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Page 243 - Get up to date with the latest news, scores & standings from the Cycling News Community.
Brown out for Pit. That should influence the discussion between the comish, and Berf: ie: no reduction. The PA will still push for a reduction, but Brown missing a playoff game due to the illegal hit is a bargaining chip for the NFL. Chris Carter had some good commentary about this.

Brown being out will certainly help Denver, but Pit still has weapons. Ben's health is the big Q.

EDIT: Great interview with Arians this morning on ESPN radio!
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
And they really think he'll be better than Lovie Smith? Well, he is inheriting the team Lovie built.
I think that Dirk can build this team into a playoff team by 2018. The owners and fans need to give the Bucs time to build and develop. There are some good pieces already in place, but they need to tighten things up on both lines, and they need a monster LB and/or shutdown DB.
EDIT: L. David had a solid year at LB for the Bucks, but he needs some help either at OL or DE.
 
Well, I just imagine they were already on the way to being a playoff contender under Lovie. Maybe I'm just sympathetic as the way they fired him was cowardly bs.

As to Brown being out. That really stinks. Recall that Pacman Jones claimed he flopped on the play to get a penalty.

With Brown out, and Ben hurt, that does diminish the Steelers chances. But there are still two factors. How far can Ben really throw the ball. If it's no more than 30 yards, and throws won't have much zip, they're doomed. But I also wonder how healthy Peyton really is for Denver. Saw an interesting stat, PM is 0-5 in playoff games when the kickoff temp was 40 (F) or below. The scheduled high for Sunday is 41 degrees, a low of 25. Kickoff time is I believe 2:40pm.
 
Re:

Just for fun, here were my predictions dating back to just before the season started. I changed colors of some for this post, showing how right (green) I was, or wrong (red). Some are still up in the air, like awards.
Alpe d'Huez said:
• Aaron Rodgers will be MVP once again.
• JJ Watt will again be defensive player of the year.
• Jamis Winston will throw an awful lot, some great throws, some awful, and still be rookie of the year.
• Marcus Mariota will throw less, and get benched for Zach Mettenberger at some point.
• Todd Gurly (and Nick Foles) will struggle for 8+ games for the Rams, and show signs of life late.
• Adrien Peterson will gain over 1,500 yards, but not get comeback player.
• DeMarco Murray will not gain that much.

• Seattle will be great on defense still, hot/cold on offense, fade and lose in the playoffs.
• Denver will be very good on defense, have real OL problems, PM fade, and lose in the wildcard round.
• The NFC West will again be very tough. However...
• The toughest division will be the AFC North. Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Cincy and Cleveland.
Andy Dalton will be average late, and AJ McCaron will get playing time, and struggle, but show promise.
• The Steelers will be up and down early, but strong late in the season.
• The Patriots will win 12+ games again, but lose in the playoffs.
• Andrew Luck will throw a ton, but the Colts will lose some games they should win.
• Arizona will have some very impressive wins, but lose in the playoffs again.
• The Eagles will be all over the map. Win some big games, lose some they should win.
• Sam Bradford will get hurt. But not with a season ending injury.

• Both Houston and Buffalo's defenses will have some monster performances.
• Defenses will dominate the line in many games, which will get a lot of talk around the league.
• With that in mind, KC and the short-mid passing game of Alex Smith and his new receivers will surprise.
• Dallas will struggle to win 10 games, have another identity crisis.
• The Giants will luck their way into the playoffs, and win a few games they shouldn't.
• Washington and Cousins will be hot/cold. Late season will get ugly for the whole team/franchise.
• Jacksonville and Oakland will improve behind young talent and new staff...to 5-11, maybe even 6-10.

And finally: Super Bowl L: Green Bay will defeat Baltimore.

Some were pretty easy picks, some way off, others I pulled out of my hat. McCarron, Bradford, the Steelers. But with McCarron and Mariota I was only partly right, due to injuries. I was sort of right on the Rams and Eagles. Way wrong on the Super Bowl, though the Ravens were decimated from injuries more than any other team in the league. I also posted this before Jordy Nelson went down for GB.
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
Well, I just imagine they were already on the way to being a playoff contender under Lovie. Maybe I'm just sympathetic as the way they fired him was cowardly bs.

As to Brown being out. That really stinks. Recall that Pacman Jones claimed he flopped on the play to get a penalty.

With Brown out, and Ben hurt, that does diminish the Steelers chances. But there are still two factors. How far can Ben really throw the ball. If it's no more than 30 yards, and throws won't have much zip, they're doomed. But I also wonder how healthy Peyton really is for Denver. Saw an interesting stat, PM is 0-5 in playoff games when the kickoff temp was 40 (F) or below. The scheduled high for Sunday is 41 degrees, a low of 25. Kickoff time is I believe 2:40pm.
I was surprised that they hired Lovie in the first place. I didn't see enough improvement this year to say that they "were already on their way". The two disclaimers are obviously that they won more games this year than last, and they (Dirk) were developing a rookie QB. If I was an owner, I would give a head coach at least three years to build things. I didn't follow his firing enough to know how cowardly it was (rich people don't care who they step on). Isn't the family notorious for cut-throat business?
 
Re:

jmdirt said:
Brown out for Pit. That should influence the discussion between the comish, and Berf: ie: no reduction. The PA will still push for a reduction, but Brown missing a playoff game due to the illegal hit is a bargaining chip for the NFL. Chris Carter had some good commentary about this.

Carter also said Jones spiked his marijuana with PCP :D
 
Jun 22, 2009
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NFL To Move All 32 Teams To Los Angeles

NEW YORK—National Football League commissioner Paul Tagliabue announced Tuesday that, after over a decade without a football team, Los Angeles would become the home of all 32 NFL franchises by 2015.

"The league has met with Los Angeles city officials several times over the past few years in an attempt to bring a football team to the nation's second-largest market," Tagliabue said in a press conference held to unveil the NFL's realignment plan. "I'm happy to announce that we have finally reached a decision: Every single NFL team will be relocated to the Los Angeles metropolitan area over the next five years."

Tagliabue noted that Los Angeles, which has been without an NFL franchise of its own since the Raiders moved back to Oakland and the Rams went to St. Louis in 1995, had everything the league was looking for in a comprehensive host city: previous experience in hosting more than one team, proximity to the nerve center of the entertainment industry, a diverse fan base, and a climate ideally suited for playing the traditionally autumnal sport of football well into the inhospitable winter months.

"Los Angeles is a perfect football city," said Gene Washington, the NFL's director of football operations. "It's a mystery to me why no team has been able to make a go of it here during the modern era, when places like Pittsburgh and Green Bay enjoy rabid fan bases. Obviously, the solution that has always eluded us is to move the most popular teams here. I'm sure the die-hard followers of the Glendale Steelers and the Orange County Packers won't abandon their teams over a little thing like geography."

"Plus, the intricate L.A. highway system will cut team travel time by almost 25 percent," Washington added.

The National Football League and city officials have reached a preliminary deal on terms to bring all the teams back to the Los Angeles area. The current divisional alignment will be preserved, with teams from the NFC and AFC North divisions making their home in northern L.A., creating such teams as the Malibu Vikings and Venice Beach Browns. Teams in the Eastern divisions would become the Compton Cowboys and Florence Avenue Jets, and so on throughout the 4,100-square mile sprawl of Los Angeles County.

All teams will play their first few seasons of games in the Los Angeles Coliseum until 31 separate stadium referenda can be agreed upon by the city's taxpayers, after which the venerable facility will become the home of the Silver Lake Jaguars.

The reaction from fans and players alike has been mixed.

"This is certainly a bold move," said Alex Smith, rookie quarterback of the Beverly Hills 49ers. "I can't say I saw it coming. But I'll continue working hard for my team, my coach, and the 49ers fans—the greatest fans in the world, no matter where they wind up living when this whole thing is over with."

Ok, I cheated. ;) This was from the Onion in 05, the original 'target date' was 2010, which I changed to 2015 for effect.
 
Henry will be in the draft. Who will take him? Will the Titans go big and take him #1? Cowboys at #4? Colts at#18? Or do the Titans take him with their second pick? Disclaimer: I don't know how the pick shuffle will shake out so I'm just looking at the set order.

I know the RB has lost value in the NFL, but a strong running game (running threat) makes teams better. The Steelers were better with Bell, the Seahawks with Lynch/Rawls, the cards are best when Ellington is well, even the Pats are better when they plug a solid run threat behind Brady. Th Broncos would be on the couch this weekend if it wasn't for their RBs. Just having a good RB doesn't necessarily make you a superbowl team as Martin and the Bucs showed this year, but the RB is an important piece of a successful offense.
 
Re:

jmdirt said:
Henry will be in the draft. Who will take him? Will the Titans go big and take him #1? Cowboys at #4? Colts at#18? Or do the Titans take him with their second pick? Disclaimer: I don't know how the pick shuffle will shake out so I'm just looking at the set order.

I know the RB has lost value in the NFL, but a strong running game (running threat) makes teams better. The Steelers were better with Bell, the Seahawks with Lynch/Rawls, the cards are best when Ellington is well, even the Pats are better when they plug a solid run threat behind Brady. Th Broncos would be on the couch this weekend if it wasn't for their RBs. Just having a good RB doesn't necessarily make you a superbowl team as Martin and the Bucs showed this year, but the RB is an important piece of a successful offense.

In all those examples the rb was out by the season halfway point. Which is another reason why you don't take them high.

And Henry is an Alabama rb so people are wary
 
Re: Re:

The Hitch said:
jmdirt said:
Henry will be in the draft. Who will take him? Will the Titans go big and take him #1? Cowboys at #4? Colts at#18? Or do the Titans take him with their second pick? Disclaimer: I don't know how the pick shuffle will shake out so I'm just looking at the set order.

I know the RB has lost value in the NFL, but a strong running game (running threat) makes teams better. The Steelers were better with Bell, the Seahawks with Lynch/Rawls, the cards are best when Ellington is well, even the Pats are better when they plug a solid run threat behind Brady. Th Broncos would be on the couch this weekend if it wasn't for their RBs. Just having a good RB doesn't necessarily make you a superbowl team as Martin and the Bucs showed this year, but the RB is an important piece of a successful offense.

In all those examples the rb was out by the season halfway point. Which is another reason why you don't take them high.

And Henry is an Alabama rb so people are wary
:D
Its always a bit of a crap shoot with any NCAA star transitioning to the NFL.
 
KC@NE - Both teams have injuries, the Chiefs biggest is that Maclain is unlikely to play much, or will only be a decoy, or some short routes. The Pats are banged up all over. I think KC is a very complete team, and the hotter team (hottest in NFL, really), but I'm going with the Pats in a close, maybe ugly game.

GB@AZ - This is the one game I am pretty confident in. I expect somewhat of a shootout, but the Cardinals have more firepower, more consistency, and a better defense. And they're at home. Ignore talk from the Packers that their blowout loss in the RS was personal and they want revenge.

SEA@CAR - This is the toughest game for me to pick. Seattle has all it takes to beat Carolina. But they have had some close games they lost, and barely eeked by the Vikings last week. Carolina hasn't been world beaters over big teams, but they win and know how to win. In the end I think Cam to Greg Olson is the key Seattle can't stop. But I think Seattle is better prepared mentally, and if the game is close late, I won't be at all surprised if the Seattle defense holds, and especially if he has the ball late and it's close, Russell Wilson wins the game.

PIT@DEN - While I don't expect much from Manning, I think he will throw very precise short throws to open receivers, enough to move the ball. If he can't go, Osweiller can still win the game I think. With no Brown, and Big Ben hurt, I just don't see the Steelers doing enough against the Broncos stellar defense.

I realize it's unlikely all four home teams will win. So if I see an away team winning, I first say Seattle, then KC pulling out wins.
 
Jun 22, 2009
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I thought that I had already posted, but evidently that was just a senior moment. It certainly looks like four homes, and I totally agree with Alpe about which away teams might upset.

KC @ NE - The Chiefs roll comes to an end, just.
GB @ ARI - I expect an easy Cards win.
SEA @ CAR - The Seahawk's luck finally runs out.
PIT @ DEN - The old man to shine just enough one last time.
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
SEA@CAR - This is the toughest game for me to pick. Seattle has all it takes to beat Carolina. But they have had some close games they lost, and barely eeked by the Vikings last week. Carolina hasn't been world beaters over big teams, but they win and know how to win. In the end I think Cam to Greg Olson is the key Seattle can't stop. But I think Seattle is better prepared mentally, and if the game is close late, I won't be at all surprised if the Seattle defense holds, and especially if he has the ball late and it's close, Russell Wilson wins the game.

I realize it's unlikely all four home teams will win. So if I see an away team winning, I first say Seattle, then KC pulling out wins.
there are a couple other factors going in favor for Seattle in this rematch. In their first meeting, Seattle was without:
-LB Bobby Wagner
-DE Frank Clark
-DB Jeremy Lane
-DB Marcus Burley
On top of that, the Seattle secondary was still a mess with Cary Williams starting at CB.
Now, Cary is gone, Deshawn Shead has taken over at starting CB while playing well, Lane has returned and contributing well at nickle, and Burley is a capable backup. BWagz can be mentioned in the same sentence with Luke Kuechly (without disrespecting either), and Clark is a huge disrupter all along the front that gives needed depth. Other front 7 defenders are healthy and the DL rotation is now at full throttle. And all of those guys listed above are healthy.

Considering that, in their first meeting Seattle allowed 27 Carolina points. I don't see Seattle giving up that many this time.

Offensively, Seattle has TE Willson back and Lynch back. Willson could have the biggest impact of those 2. (Yes, I'm not drunk). But I don't think either will matter that much. Seattle can go without either.

Most people are picking Carolina to win. Overall, this still could be a very close game, but if there is a blowout, Seattle will be the one handing it out. SEATTLE BY A DOZEN.
 
Re: Re:

jmdirt said:
The Hitch said:
jmdirt said:
Henry will be in the draft. Who will take him? Will the Titans go big and take him #1? Cowboys at #4? Colts at#18? Or do the Titans take him with their second pick? Disclaimer: I don't know how the pick shuffle will shake out so I'm just looking at the set order.

I know the RB has lost value in the NFL, but a strong running game (running threat) makes teams better. The Steelers were better with Bell, the Seahawks with Lynch/Rawls, the cards are best when Ellington is well, even the Pats are better when they plug a solid run threat behind Brady. Th Broncos would be on the couch this weekend if it wasn't for their RBs. Just having a good RB doesn't necessarily make you a superbowl team as Martin and the Bucs showed this year, but the RB is an important piece of a successful offense.

In all those examples the rb was out by the season halfway point. Which is another reason why you don't take them high.

And Henry is an Alabama rb so people are wary
:D
Its always a bit of a crap shoot with any NCAA star transitioning to the NFL.

Don't see him going going in the first round. Also it seems like Zeke is the consensus first RB taken. Trent Richardson still looms large like Hitch said. Also Henry had a ridiculous amount of carries this season (i think multiple games with over 40 carries) so teams will be wary.
 
Really surprised by the lines this weekend.

Pats -4.5 feels low. Would mean on neutral field Chiefs would only get 1.5. I think the pats are much better.

And Carolina -1.5 seems extremely low. Will definatly take the Panthers here. Seahawks have had 2 very disapointing games against the Rams and the ridiculous Vikings win. In between their was them Clobbering the Cards in arizona but I saw that game more as Cardinals not trying at all. Don't see much changed from the first meeting. yes the seahawks got some players back but if i remember correct Kuechly wasn't playing either so that would even out.
 
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Re: Re:

Billie said:
jmdirt said:
The Hitch said:
jmdirt said:
Henry will be in the draft. Who will take him? Will the Titans go big and take him #1? Cowboys at #4? Colts at#18? Or do the Titans take him with their second pick? Disclaimer: I don't know how the pick shuffle will shake out so I'm just looking at the set order.

I know the RB has lost value in the NFL, but a strong running game (running threat) makes teams better. The Steelers were better with Bell, the Seahawks with Lynch/Rawls, the cards are best when Ellington is well, even the Pats are better when they plug a solid run threat behind Brady. Th Broncos would be on the couch this weekend if it wasn't for their RBs. Just having a good RB doesn't necessarily make you a superbowl team as Martin and the Bucs showed this year, but the RB is an important piece of a successful offense.

In all those examples the rb was out by the season halfway point. Which is another reason why you don't take them high.

And Henry is an Alabama rb so people are wary
:D
Its always a bit of a crap shoot with any NCAA star transitioning to the NFL.

Don't see him going going in the first round. Also it seems like Zeke is the consensus first RB taken. Trent Richardson still looms large like Hitch said. Also Henry had a ridiculous amount of carries this season (i think multiple games with over 40 carries) so teams will be wary.

Yeah I see Henry as a good power back but I don't know if he can do much else in the pros. Guys are bigger and faster in the NFL. Zeke is my top RB for this year. Next year is looking like a really good RB class though
 
Late with this, but agree with Alpe, not just on picks, but pretty much on rationale. Even agree on which road teams most likely to win. I think AZ is the surest win, and Denver also very sure, given the players the Steelers have lost or are playing hurt.

But here is my ranking for teams I would most like to see win the SB:

1. KC. So much to like here. Andy Reid is one of the longest-serving coaches in the NFL, and arguably the best active coach who has never won a SB. Alex Smith was a no. 1 pick, was on the verge of being cut by the Niners, had his career resuscitated by Harbaugh, then got pushed aside by Kaepernick (who?), and has found peace and success in KC. Also a class guy off and on the field. And how about the home town? A relatively small midwestern city that rarely wins everything has a chance for a rare double, a WS and SB in the same season.

2. AZ. Can you believe that Carson Palmer, Heisman winner and no. 1 pick, is 36 years old and has only played in one postseason game? Well, technically two, but in one of them he was hurt on the first freaking play of the game, and taken out. How does this happen? All those years with Cincy, which rarely made the postseason. Then Oakland, which was even worse. His first year at AZ, the team was good enough to make the playoffs, but had the misfortune of playing in the then toughest division in the NFL. His second year they made it, but he was injured. Finally, he gets his big chance. Phoenix, of course, has never won a SB or NBA title, and their only WS win was fifteen years ago. The Cardinal franchise has never won a SB, and lost a heart-breakingly close one to Pittsburgh a few years ago, arguably the most exciting and dramatic SB of all time.

3. SE. When the 49ers are out of it, I start becoming a fan of that team up the coast. I think Carroll/Wilson could win 3-4 SBs before they're done, and if they do, I'll say enough. But they aren't there yet.

4. DE. I'll admit it, it would be cool to see Manning go out winning the one game he's had so much trouble winning. Maybe he doesn't deserve another chance, he's had three already, and the two he lost were in large part his fault. There's also the HGH thing, but actually, for me, that adds to the intrigue. Suppose DE won the SB behind Manning, then a few days or weeks later, strong evidence that he used HGH came out. Think LA's fall was a big deal?

5. CAR. Arguably the best team overall for the season as a whole. They''ll probably have to beat both SE and AZ to get there, and if they do that much, there won't be any question about how good they are.

6, GB. Rodgers is too good a QB not to win more than one SB.

7. PIT. The Steelers have won more SB than any other team. Ben has already been in three. Enough.

8. NE. Enough, enough, enough.
 
Nice, gritty win for the Patriots. This is the best they have looked in a while, though they still didn't look completely sharp. Biggest props go to the OL, who are simply a noticeable step better with Vollmer on the field. One could only imagine how good they'd be if Nate Solder hadn't been lost for the season.

The other team members of the Pats who deserve praise are their secondary. Part of the issue was Maclin being out, but repeatedly Smith had no one to throw to, even after long plays of moving around. While the Pats did give up some third down passes, they managed the game very well, and got very stiff whenever the Chiefs got into the red zone, which is where the Chiefs have thrived all season.