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Regarding which? Sanchez leading Denver into the playoffs? RG3 or Kaep starting in Denver or winning elsewhere? Oakland winning more games?

Don't get me wrong on Denver, I think even with Sanchez, they will still be good because of their defense. You have to keep in mind though two things. First, they're getting nitpicked to death in free agency because of the contracts Elway signed in recent years to win now. They lost Malick Jackson, probably their best defensive lineman. Then they lost Danny Trevathan, who wasn't Von Miller, but a key part of their LB corps. They're also on the verge of losing David Burton their dime back safety who played all four DB positions. Plus on offense they may well lose Evan Mathis, and CJ Anderson. And they haven't really signed anyone in return, and what's left isn't a lot of options, with limited cap space. Let's also keep in mind DeMarcus Ware is nearing the end of his shelf life, and was very lucky to not miss much time last season, which hasn't been the case with him over the last few seasons.

Now think about how everyone will be gunning for them. Sure, teams that hope to contend will view them as challenge, but for other teams, to beat the reigning SB champion is as close to the big game they come. This is why so few teams repeat. Even past teams with great defenses couldn't do it, and many of them struggled to even make the playoffs. Denver's outstanding 2015 defense (actually outplayed by Carolina's in the Superbowl, if you look at the numbers), is starting to look more like a "very good" defense.

There are still two QB elephants in the room. First is Ryan Fitzpatrick, who could fit into Denver's system better than Sanchez and start from day 1. Though Fitzpatrick may be better fit for Todd Bowels Jets system where he just did well. And the huge elephant is Drew Brees, who is at the end of a big contract. Whomever pays him, is going to pay. Right now, New Orleans holds all the cards, but they could trade him away in a blockbuster deal. Is Denver ready to trade away their future? I doubt it, but who knows?
 
Re:

Billie said:
Pats trade Chandler Jones to Arizona for a 2nd round pick.

Really like the trade for the Cards. Only thing they were missing on defense is a rusher and Jones fit that role to a tee
Pats receive Jonathan Cooper (guard) as well. Former first-round pick, though he's been injured much of the time since he was drafted in 2013.

As for Chandler Jones: it was either trade him now or use him this season only to lose him next year. He's set for a massive pay day when his contract expires after the 2016 season, and there was no way Patriots were going to give him a contract that can match the one Olivier Vernon got this year from the Giants (and Malik Jackson at Jax for that matter). Furthermore, the Patriots have to worry about both Collins, Hightower and Butler next year, and as the defence suffers more without Hightower/Collins than it does without Jones, it's the logical move.
The addition of Cooper gives the Patriots some much needed depth at O-line as well, though he's yet to show that he's able to consistently stay healthy.
 
Definitely will be interesting to see how free agent losses effect Denver next season.

Speaking of SEA free agent losses and gains (IF you can call their free agent offensive linemen signed from other teams, like OAK OT/G J'Marcus Webb, as a GAIN), I have been and continue to lose confidence in Tom Cable's ability to pick good offensive linemen while allowing better ones to escape! :confused: Webb is a typical Cable lineman, who is a decent run blocker and horrible pass blocker. Add to that, SEA signed him for 2 years at $6.5M, making him the highest paid OL right now on the SEA roster (more :confused: ) considering LT Okung is still unsigned and undecided on his next home. If Okung flies the coop, it will make me wonder if there is something wrong with the chemistry of the offensive line group, not because of players, but as a RESULT of Cable (remember his tumultuous stint in Oakland).

[edit: actually, I'm more than losing confidence. My level of pissivity is rising. Sharply.]
 
The Chandler Jones trade is classic Belicheck. Trade a guy away in his prime who is about to be really expensive. In return, they get a needed draft pick, plus they just signed Chris Long, who is towards the end of his career, and less expensive. If he can stay healthy, almost as good. But that's a big if.

The Raiders streak continued when LT Donald Penn looked like he was about to leave, but re-signed. I'm not about to pronounce the Raiders the team to beat in the AFC West just yet, but this is shaping up to be a very good team with a lot of solid key players. They still need a defensive line stuffer, and DB help, but there are a lot of tools in place there.

CJ Anderson decided to stay in Denver, which at least stopped the bleeding there.
 
I was hoping if Okung left Seattle that Seattle could pick up the Raiders' Penn or Steelers' Beachum. Since Raiders re-sign Penn and Kelvin Beachum signed with the Jags, that leaves Seattle with a chance at the Browns Joe Thomas. But Thomas has not asked for a trade and the Browns have not put out word they'd like to trade him, even though trading Thomas makes some good sense since the Browns are obviously now having to rebuild (http://espn.go.com/blog/cleveland-browns/post/_/id/18260/browns-new-approach-may-make-trading-joe-thomas-logical).

On Okung's deal, first Okung is a stellar person. So I have no hard feelings and I wish him the best. Based on his injury history, I fear that his deal with the Broncos could come crashing down on him. Okung has missed 24 games in six years (5 in the last 2 years, 13 in the last 3 years), and is coming off shoulder surgery in February. Relatively speaking, shoulder issues are not generally that big a deal (e.g. not career threatening, may not miss a load of games as result). The bad part of this for Okung is his deal with Denver DOES NOT HAVE ONE DOLLAR OF GUARANTEED MONEY. Here is what ESPN's Adam Schefter said about that yesterday:
This is what happens when you negotiate your own contract instead of having an agent. Okung's salary for next year won't be guaranteed unless he's on the roster for Week 1. That means the Broncos are protected if Okung's health deteriorates, which is a distinct possibility after undergoing offseason shoulder surgery. In today's NFL, it's rare for a player of Okung's stature to accept a deal without any guarantees. Okung's contract is essentially a one-year deal with a four-year team option. If things go south for Okung, Denver can move on from him without much hassle. Mar 18 - 2:03 PM http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/5632/russell-okung
Okung has a Business degree from OSU, and is working on his MBA, but not many NFL athletes are likely to follow Okung's footsteps to represent themselves, which is the major reason his situation has received so much media attention. Nor should other players go without an agent. Okung's deal with the Denver is a good example WHY players should NOT represent themselves. Here's a good explanation by Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times of what the first year (2016) of Okung's deal looks like:
His contract for 2016 was initially reported as $5 million guaranteed and another $3 million in possible incentives.

That means Okung could get just $5 million and be a free agent again next year. (In fact,it was revealed Friday morning that the $5 million for 2016 initially portrayed as being guaranteed is, in fact, not really guaranteed at all. Instead, according to ESPN’s Field Yates, the deal includes a $1 million workout bonus, $2 million base salary and a $2 million roster bonus for being on the 53-man for at least one game. In essence, there is not a single dollar guaranteed at signing. http://www.seattletimes.com/sports/seahawks/did-former-seahawks-left-tackle-russell-okung-make-the-right-call-in-representing-himself/
So if Okung gets injured next year Denver could just say, "See Ya", and Okung would have received a one year contract for $5M. With all Okung has done in Seattle, the Hawks would have taken better care of him than that!! I think Seattle would have paid more than that, and with guarantees. That's either a bad move by Okung, or (as I stated in an earlier post) there may be some bad chemistry starting with their OL coach that has players in the offensive line group wanting to leave Seattle.
 
Re: Re:

movingtarget said:
Amsterhammer said:
I haven't been paying any attention - has 3Bob found a new home yet?
No but he is meeting with the Browns.
Pffff. I know I shouldn't but I'm LMAO. But apparently the meeting with the Browns went well. Earlier in this month 3Bob met with the Jets. http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl-news/4699051-browns-robert-griffin-iii-rg3-redskins-baylor-rams-trade-johnny-manziel He is rumored to have some interest by other teams (Colts, Cowboys, Steelers & Viks) but everything related to 3Bob (or any other FA QB like him) going to any other team is being held up until the situation with Colin Kaepernick is resolved. http://nfltraderumors.co/nfl-rumors-robert-griffin-iii-colts-cowboys-steelers-vikings/ Other than that, I even heard on the radio this week that Kaep and the Niners may actually, and should actually, kiss and make up.
 
Jun 22, 2009
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Re: Re:

on3m@n@rmy said:
movingtarget said:
Amsterhammer said:
I haven't been paying any attention - has 3Bob found a new home yet?
No but he is meeting with the Browns.
Pffff. I know I shouldn't but I'm LMAO. But apparently the meeting with the Browns went well. Earlier in this month 3Bob met with the Jets. http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl-news/4699051-browns-robert-griffin-iii-rg3-redskins-baylor-rams-trade-johnny-manziel He is rumored to have some interest by other teams (Colts, Cowboys, Steelers & Viks) but everything related to 3Bob (or any other FA QB like him) going to any other team is being held up until the situation with Colin Kaepernick is resolved. http://nfltraderumors.co/nfl-rumors-robert-griffin-iii-colts-cowboys-steelers-vikings/ Other than that, I even heard on the radio this week that Kaep and the Niners may actually, and should actually, kiss and make up.
Much obliged for the input and links.
 
Thanks for the links. That is indeed pretty ugly deal. I mean, he is likely to get $5m, but that could end up being all he ever gets. And if he re-injures himself in camp, or the pre-season, he could walk away with as little as $1m, or $2m. That's it. In a league that's as rough as any in sports, and a player who has been injured many times. And despite those seeming like decent numbers, I have a serious hunch as a good, sought after LT in his prime (though yes, often hurt), just about any agent worth his weight in salt could have gotten a much bigger number. Yes, there are some bad agents, but someone like Russell would have had no problem getting a good one. And that 3% fee would be nothing as a result.
 
Re: Re:

on3m@n@rmy said:
movingtarget said:
Amsterhammer said:
I haven't been paying any attention - has 3Bob found a new home yet?
No but he is meeting with the Browns.
Pffff. I know I shouldn't but I'm LMAO. But apparently the meeting with the Browns went well. Earlier in this month 3Bob met with the Jets. http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl-news/4699051-browns-robert-griffin-iii-rg3-redskins-baylor-rams-trade-johnny-manziel He is rumored to have some interest by other teams (Colts, Cowboys, Steelers & Viks) but everything related to 3Bob (or any other FA QB like him) going to any other team is being held up until the situation with Colin Kaepernick is resolved. http://nfltraderumors.co/nfl-rumors-robert-griffin-iii-colts-cowboys-steelers-vikings/ Other than that, I even heard on the radio this week that Kaep and the Niners may actually, and should actually, kiss and make up.
i think Kaep will end up at Denver after more negotiating. Someone will have to concede ground for that to happen. At the moment it's a phoney war and everyone is looking for the best deal but sooner or later someone will have to blink !
 
I noted a couple months ago my proposed rule changes, and I like mine better, but I'm just some guy at a desk. Here is how I would vote:

1. By Competition Committee; Permanently moves the line of scrimmage for Try kicks to the defensive team's 15-yard line, and allows the defense to return any missed try. Yes.

2. By Competition Committee; Permits the offensive and defensive play callers on the coaching staffs to use the coach-to-player communication system regardless of whether they are on the field or in the coaches' booth.Yes.

3. By Competition Committee; Makes all chop blocks illegal. Yes. However, this will change the game to see less running outside the tackles, and less screen passes. Committee needs to be ready to adjust and implement future rules as needed to counter this.

4. By Competition Committee; Disqualifies a player who is penalized twice in one game for certain types of unsportsmanlike conduct fouls. No. Knee-jerk reaction to the refs not tossing Odell Beckam. Just educate the refs better, and let them do their job. Richard Sherman is right.

5. By Competition Committee; Changes the spot of the next snap after a touchback resulting from a free kick to the 25-yard line. No. Seriously? This is the best they could think of?.

6. By Baltimore; to amend Rule 5, Sections 3, Articles 1 and 2 (Changes in Position) to require players to wear jersey vests with numbers appropriate for their positions. ?? No more receivers with numbers in teens? Why?

7. By Baltimore; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Articles 1, 4, and 5 (Instant Replay) to provide each team with three challenges and expand reviewable plays. No. This is not an issue..

8. By Buffalo; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Articles 1, 4, and 5 (Instant Replay) to permit a coach to challenge any official's decision except scoring plays and turnovers. Yes. But only if reviews are done in a centralized "booth", NOT by officials under the hood on the field. There also needs to be a 60-90 second rule after the red flag is tossed and whistle blown. If the play isn't overturned by then, it stands and they keep playing.

9. By Carolina; to amend Rule 8, Section 2, Article 1 (Intentional Grounding) to expand the definition of intentional grounding. Yes. Probably, need to know more.

10. By Kansas City; to amend Rule 14, Section 2, Article 1 (Half-distance Penalty) to add penalty yards to the distance needed to gain a First Down. No. Not necessary..

11. By Kansas City; to amend Rule 8, Section 1, Article 2 (Legal Forward Pass) to prohibit quarterbacks from falling to the ground, getting up, and throwing a forward pass. No. This isn't college..

12 (same as 15). By Minnesota; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Article 1 (Coaches' Challenge) to eliminate the requirement that a team be successful on each of its first two Instant Replay challenges in order to be awarded a third challenge. Yes, though a minor issue

13. By Washington; to amend Rule 16, Section 1, Articles 1, 4, 6 and 7 (Overtime procedures) to eliminate overtime periods in preseason games. Yes. I like the idea of both teams getting one shot at a 50 yard FG, and that being OT. This allows teams to test a kicker too.

14. By Washington; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Article 4 (Reviewable Plays) to subject personal foul penalties to Instant Replay review. Yes. As I said before, nearly all plays should be reviewable, but only in a booth, and on a timer.

15. See 12 above.

16. By Competition Committee; Expands the horse collar rule to include when a defender grabs the jersey at the name plate or above and pulls a runner toward the ground. Yes. I see the logic in it, but jerseys give more than shoulder pads. And Imagine the replays on this one.

17. By Competition Committee; Makes it a foul for delay of game when a team attempts to call a timeout when it is not permitted to do so. Yes. I thought this was already a rule?

18. By Competition Committee; Eliminates the five-yard penalty for an eligible receiver illegally touching a forward pass after being out of bounds and re-establishing himself
inbounds, and makes it a loss of down.Yes. Simplifies a hard to judge rule.

19. By Competition Committee; Eliminates multiple spots of enforcement for a double foul after a change of possession. Yes. I think this would be going back to the way it was in the old days, and simplifies things.
 
Only had time to look at your takes on the first 5 rule changes. I agree with all, but have a different thought about rule change #3. I'm not exactly sure where to stand on this one. The rule essentially allows calls to be made to the players with green dots on their helmet FROM the play booth upstairs, where the field view is much better than the way it has been done in the past, which is to call plays FROM the sideline. My thought is that allowing the call to be made from the booth makes it much easier to direct the QB on where to go with the ball, which could make mediocre QBs look pretty good. I'm not for that if that is the outcome. If they are lousy QBs, then let them suffer the consequence and play lousy. Not just that, but it takes a bit of the spontaneity and possibly athleticism out of the QB play and the game, which to me is less interesting. (Besides, I hate QBs and like to see them get freight-trained. :D )
 
Oh, man, Chip Kelly just gave a hel! of an interview on his time in Philly. The highlights:

1) He never sought power over personnel moves, it was basically handed to him by the owner
2) He never negotiated a player contract in his life. He just evaluated players and told management whether he thought the team should pursue them, how much they were paid was not up to him.
"I wouldn't have paid anyone," Kelly said on Wednesday during the NFC coaches breakfast at the NFL owners meetings. "I'm really frugal. I think some of the money all these guys are getting, that's a huge leap of faith with anybody."
3) The disappointing seasons of DeMarco Murray and Kiki Alonso? They were “injury-related”
4) When asked what went wrong this past season: “We didn’t win enough games.”


http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/eagles/20160324_McLane__Chip_Kelly_says___Wasn_t_my_fault_.html#RjqZldy7Imk8LU82.99

It’s going to be an interesting season in SF. If the 49ers continue as one of the worst teams in the NFL, hey, at least there will lots of drama and discussion about how long Kelly will last.

In other NFL news, several rule changes were made. The most talked-about was probably the one that makes touchbacks on kickoffs put the ball on the 25 yard line, rather than the twenty (# 5 on Alpe’s list above). The rationale is that the extra five yards will make players fielding a KO in the end zone more likely to down the ball rather than run it out, thus cutting down on injuries. But some wonder if kickers will respond by trying to kick the ball higher and shorter, forcing the receiving team to run the ball back.

Meanwhile, the CTE issue is heating up. As noted on this thread before, the NFL has finally admitted a link between concussions and CTE. That's progress, right? Well, some scientists are now arguing there is no direct evidence for the link. There are only studies showing an association of CTE with athletes who have had concussions, which is not actual proof of a causal relationship. In fact, the association is really strong, one study reported 90/94 post-mortem brains analyzed showed signs of CTE. But the counter-argument is that the athletes might have had other risk factors, such as drug use, and that the kind of individuals who end up in such a study are not a random sample of all players. They are individuals who led a troubled life in some manner, that's why the possibility of CTE arose; thus the sample might be biassed towards other, unknown factors than concussions.

I can't really disagree with this reasoning, but it still seems likely that when better studies are carried out, the link will be confirmed. The concern among those who think it's being called a link prematurely is that athletes who have problems resulting from some completely different cause--mental illness, e.g.--may think they have CTE, and in the worst case, commit suicide.
 
First, it looks like RG3 is signing with the Browns, in a good deal for Cleveland. $15m over two years, only $6.75 guaranteed. Worth the risk I think. Will he start? Over McCown? I don't think so, but I would think at least he'd be given a chance to start, and at worst be 2nd string going into the season. All the word from Hue Jackson and others was that RG3 was pretty humble and open to admitting he made many mistakes, and never blaming the Redskins. The guy has a lot of talent, so maybe he can adapt? McCown has always been a total team player, which had to have played into Hue and the team's decision.

Do the Browns now trade their 2nd round pick? Tennessee isn't going to take a QB, and needs help all over, and Carson Wentz stock is rising. So dumping the pick seems quite possible. What about Cleveland taking a QB in the 2nd or 3rd round? Both Cook and Hackenberg are viewed as prospects who could be NFL QB's in a few years, and likely to fall to 2-4th round. Cook looked like he might make Rd1, but a horrible final game against Alabama showed his mid-long range accuracy needs a lot of work. But his arm may overcome that.

Good post Merckx. I love Kelly's quip about not winning enough games. Sounds like he took lessons from Bill Belicheck on that one answer. If he thinks he had a hard time working with the invisible Howie Roseman, just wait until Baalke gets his hands on Chip's team!

Merckx index said:
In other NFL news, several rule changes were made. The most talked-about was probably the one that makes touchbacks on kickoffs put the ball on the 25 yard line, rather than the twenty (# 5 on Alpe’s list above). The rationale is that the extra five yards will make players fielding a KO in the end zone more likely to down the ball rather than run it out, thus cutting down on injuries.
I came up with (or borrowed) answers to this before. They could simply not allow kicks to be returned from the end zone, unless the ball is fielded, or bounces, before it gets to the goal line. Sure, you won't see as many kick returns, and rare will be the ones over 100 yards for a TD, but in the name of safety, that's not a bad idea.

Recall, Greg Schiano had the idea of instead of kicking off, giving teams the option of a punt, having the ball at the 20, or actually having the ball at their own 25 yard line on offense, but with a 4th and 15 play. That would certainly eliminate a lot of injuries, like all of them from kickoffs.

As to CTE, one of the hardest parts to factor in is what happened in college, and high school even.
 
RGIII going from the 2nd most dysfunctional franchise in the NFL to the most dysfunctional (or is it the other way around). Feel sorry for the guy. A joy to watch and what an arm. Only Rodgers can throw it better than him imo
 
RE: CTE:

One of the talking heads on ESPN Radio said "the scientist we consulted wondered a loud if steroid, and/or hormone use/abuse is a contributing factor...or THE factor. Is Jones getting info from this guy?..." Caller: "Maybe Jones is paying this guy to say that." Talking head: "So Jones wants to prove that there is 'roid abuse in the league?"...

Alpe makes a good point as well about what happened prior to their NFL career.
 
Re:

Billie said:
RGIII going from the 2nd most dysfunctional franchise in the NFL to the most dysfunctional (or is it the other way around). Feel sorry for the guy. A joy to watch and what an arm. Only Rodgers can throw it better than him imo
Great comment about the franchises. Now give it a couple years and we will be able to say which is most dysfunctional based on whether Griffin turns out well or goes bust. If Griffin becomes a pro bowler that will be serious egg on the face in Washington.
 

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