National Football League

Page 261 - Get up to date with the latest news, scores & standings from the Cycling News Community.
Merckx index said:
movingtarget said:
I suppose if they retire young with some cash behind them and the brain has not been scrambled too much it's not such a bad thing. I saw an interview with Joe Montana recently where he said he is in pain every day. Knees are gone, back problems and so on. Even has trouble sleeping because of his football related injuries.
i read an interview with Montana about ten years ago, when he was about 50 and about ten years out of the game, and he said at that point that he had had seventeen operations. His back has certainly been a major issue. He was out for a while in 1986, and there was serious concern that his career was finished; he ended up having surgery to fuse some vertebrae, which I understand virtually guarantees problems later in life. He also mentioned in that interview that he had several operations because of a problem with nerves leading to one of his eyes.

It just gets worse for Manziel. At this point, I’d think that just staying alive for another six months would be a good and better-than-expected outcome for him. We’ve seen some professional athletes and other celebrities go down the tubes, but this descent is about as fast as any I can ever recall:

According to New York Post's Emily Smith, out-of-work quarterback Johnny Manziel and his friends trashed a posh Los Angeles home they were renting and the real estate broker who discovered the damage said that there were clear signs of drug use at the house.

Manziel and a friend rented a $4.5 million house in West Hollywood for two days last week, and it sounds like it was a hell of a party. An expensive glass table was broken. So was a bathroom door. Wine stains. Cigarette burns on carpets. Kathy Griffin was there! All hell apparently broke loose.

Broker Nicholas Goodwin has demanded $32,000 from Manziel for damages, and he his lawyer spelled out the sordid details. The Post reported that "lines of suspicious white powder" were found, along with a bag of what appeared to be "magic mushrooms," or psilocybin, an illegal recreational drug.

In a letter written by Goodwin’s lawyer, Niki Ghazian, it's alleged that “Mr. Manziel threw large parties on both nights, causing extensive damage . . . Evidence suggests [Manziel] and his guests were consuming drugs and alcohol . . . and that they caused a disturbance to the neighborhood.”

That led to LAPD being called to the house on April 6. Goodwin, who arrived to the house after the two days to find it trashed and Manziel crashed on the sofa at 2 p.m., added more specific details about the drug use he believes went on at the house.

"They were supposed to check out at noon,' Goodwin told Page Six. "Manziel was passed out . . . There was cocaine all over the kitchen table, and mushrooms were still out on the table in front of him. There was booze everywhere . . . broken glasses over the floor and a Champagne glass in a tree."
http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/report--johnny-manziel-trashed-posh-l-a--pad--evidence-of-drug-use-125823320.html
Someone needs to intervene with Manziel and get him into rehab even if it fails at the first attempt. He needs a reality check. This will be the final nail in the coffin re getting a new contract I would think. If Denver quash the Kaep deal which some say is imminent they will pick up another QB in the draft.
 
Re:

Billie said:
I do not understand for one bit all the hype Wentz gets. He sure looks like what most coaches want in a QB but does he actually play like a good QB? Most analysis I see doesn't go much farther than 'built like an nfl qb', 'big arm'. But is he constantly accurate? Can he move in the pocket? How does he handle pressure? That's more imporant I think and the writers I trust don't see that.

One QB I think is highly underrated after reading some analysis is Vernon Adams. He might not be build like what an NFL QB is supposed to look like but he's much more accurate than Wentz, has better movement and awareness in the pocket. I hope a team drafts him and gives him a fair chance prove his worth.
It seems that the 49ers have been looking at Adams and Connor Cooke.
 
I worry two things about Adams. First is his size. Yes, Russell Wilson is about the same size. But Russell is the exception, not the norm. The other is if you watch Oregon's offense, he frequently had the same benefit Darron Thomas had, which were a lot of wide open receivers on many plays.

A couple benefits though is that he's used to playing a fast game, and he has a knack for quickly going through progressions across the entire field. Seems like a good person and confident, but not too cocky. He should get drafted, and get a shot somewhere. I just don't see as a starter.

As to Manzeil, what a disaster of a career, life maybe. I think cleaning his act up and making it back into the NFL would be a miracle at this point. I don't know if anyone here has been through an intervention (as a helper, or subject), or even watched Chad's on TV, but the subject has to be willing after the intervention. The family and friends can't force them. From what I can tell about Manzeil his mind isn't that open. This probably explains why his father hasn't attempted one, or if he did, it failed because of Johnny's refusal, and father decided the public didn't need to know.
 
Hey Alpe, as we've discussed ESPN.com is part of "the four letter network", but does provide quick scores, highlights, and headlines (as well as local radio). I read other sources like MMQB, but what www. do you prefer? I ran from SI many years ago, but just took a look and it seems to have changed considerably (I know MMQB is their baby). I'm interested to hear what www. others like for sports news.
 
My niece's husband said that San Diego/Carlsbad sports radio said that they had "unnamed inside sources" who claim LA is taking Elliott with the number one pick. Can a RB, a devalued position in the NFL, really go number one? As much as I still love the ball carriers, I just don't see it happening. It does create some buzz...maybe Jeff Fisher is the inside source! :D
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
And what exactly are the Rams going to do with Todd Gurley? Trade him away to get a draft pick back, to get better OL help to block for Eliot? :confused:
Great Q! Two half back set, old school? A wishbone (flex, wing, option) minus the FB? I can't see it happening, but like I said a few posts ago, the Rams new home requires some flash. If (when) they take a QB, it will be the kid from Cal to help fill the seats. If they take Elliott I will be surprised...but the rumor is good buz (I've yet to see it in print).
 
Re: Re:

movingtarget said:
Billie said:
I do not understand for one bit all the hype Wentz gets. He sure looks like what most coaches want in a QB but does he actually play like a good QB? Most analysis I see doesn't go much farther than 'built like an nfl qb', 'big arm'. But is he constantly accurate? Can he move in the pocket? How does he handle pressure? That's more imporant I think and the writers I trust don't see that.

One QB I think is highly underrated after reading some analysis is Vernon Adams. He might not be build like what an NFL QB is supposed to look like but he's much more accurate than Wentz, has better movement and awareness in the pocket. I hope a team drafts him and gives him a fair chance prove his worth.
It seems that the 49ers have been looking at Adams and Connor Cooke.
Wentz is plenty accurate, moves very well, and his knowledge and mental part of the game appears more developed that the other QBs in this draft class. Not that Goff is bad. All that based on NFL network's 1-hour segment on Wentz vs Goff with Mariucci grilling them on the white board. Then compared to former recent first round picks they said Wentz and Goff both would be rated lower than Luck, Newton, and Winston. Also that Wentz would be rated more on a Matt Stafford level. That said, there are a number of worthy opinions that think Goff has more games under his belt that shows he might perform at a level better than Wentz.

So what will the rams do? If they pick a RB they will be dumber than dumb. No, they will take a QB. Which one is anyone's guess at this point. But one Tony Dungee said yesterday that for the rams to trade away all those draft picks for the #1 overall selection, they HAVE to know who that player is, even if they are reportedly inviting each player in for another look.
 
Bleacher Report has a list of 6 underrated players who could become a first round selection:
http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2633383-2016-nfl-draft-underrated-prospects-who-could-sneak-into-first-round

Shilique Calhoun, Michigan State (DE43, OLB34)- Played DE but this crop of OLBs is not real deep and a team needing situational explosive pass rusher might reach for this.

Connor Cook, Michigan State (QB)- projected early-mid 2nd round selection might be picked in the late 1st round by a better team needing a backup QB, or a team needing some QB competition. I could see this happening.

Jeremy Cash, Duke (SS)- Not sure what to think. B/R thinks he could be SS-LB hybrid like Cards Bucannon. Projected mid-2nd rounder. At 6" and 212 pounds is a bit light for the LB role. At Duke he played nickle corner in video I watched. He would have to be a coverage LB or nickle CB. He tackles well, but is not very physical, not a thumper. Guys like Bucannon and Kam Chancellor are much more physical.

Su'a Cravens, USC (OLB43)- Also a SS/LB hybrid like Cash. B/R thinks Cash may have more suitors in the NFL because Cash was primarily a SS/CB at Duke, whereas Cravens was used mainly as an OLB at USC. At OLB he is able to take on blockers and linemen to get to the ball. He is not a cover guy. He is a mid to late 2nd round projection, so I do not see how he can jump to round 1. Cash is actually projected to go higher simply because he is more of a cover guy, which are move coveted these days.

Bronson Kaufusi, 6'6" 285, BYU (DE34, DE43)- Like Cravens, is a projected mid to late 2nd round pick. But unlike Cravens/Cush's positions, Kaufusi's position group is loaded with depth. There are 5 DEs rated higher than Kaufusi but only one of those played DE34 in college [Joey Bosa (Ohio St, DE43, 6'5" 269), DeForest Buckner (Oregon, DE34, 6'7" 291), Shaq Lawson (Clemson, DE43, 6'3" 269), Noah Spence (Ea. Kentucky, DE43, 6'2" 251), Emmanuel Ogbah (Oklahoma St, DE43, 6'4" 273), not to mention Penn State's Nassib who's right in the mix with Kaufusi in the player rankings]. At BYU in their 3-4 defense Kaufusi played inside and outside (3 and 5 technique) and often drew double teams, but he does not have NFL prototypical size (300+ lbs) for the 5 technique that generally lines up outside the tackles and would be responsible for 2 gaps. 285 pounds is kinda light for the 5 technique (Red Bryant when he was in SEA played the 5 technique, and was known for being difficult to run at even while responsible for 2 gaps). So besides big, the 5 has to be strong as well. Kaufusi's size alone makes him a better fit for the NFL DE43 position, and this draft is loaded with DE43's. So, I really do not see Kaufusi being drafted in the first round.

Le'Raven Clark, Texas Tech (LOT)- Okay. Someone is dreaming. This guy is a projected late 3rd to early 4th round pick. It would be quite a reach for any team to select him in the first round. At least the article points out this would only happen if there was a run on LOTs early in round 1. But that is not going to happen with the good defensive depth and poor LOT (and OLine) depth in this draft.

[edit: working in progress on last 4 names done]
 
I agree with Dungee there. I'm almost thinking they'll take Goff, for the two simple reasons that he's probably more pro-ready, and that he's from Cal. Assuming they are expecting a "start from week 1", or at least "play and win soon with as little as a few games to learn and develop", that spells Goff to me.

Let's look at some history. When you look at past drafts, few times have QB's gone 1-2. But often they go very high.

In 2001 Vick was taken at #1, and Drew Brees was taken at the top of the 2nd round. Vick was always overhyped to me, Brees will easily make the HOF.

I look back to 2002 and I'm not even sure coming out of college Wentz and Goff are equal in likely potential to David Carr (#1) and Joey Harrington (taken 3rd). I wouldn't say both those guys busted, but both played on teams with horrible offenses, and horrible OL's. I'm guessing that St. Louis and Cleveland will be at least a little better than that. Recall that Carr set, and still holds, the NFL single season sack record. Harrington retired early after a few okay years at best.

In 2003 Carson Palmer was taken with the 1st pick, and an obvious, easy pick at the time, and since. Despite being with a few coaches he didn't like, he's had a very good career. Byron Leftwich was taken by the Jags at #7. He spent much time as a backup, and dealing with injuries. Kyle Boller and Rex Grossman were taken late in the 1st round that year.

In 2004 Eli and Philip Rivers were taken #1 and #4. A lot was known on both, and both were expected to perform, with Rivers likely able to start from game 1 if needed, and Eli after a little learning. Both came true to that, though Eli took longer. Rivers has shown more consistent great playing, but Eli has won big games in pressure situations, including two SB victories. It's hard to compare Goff-Wentz to these guys, one way or the other.

In 2005 Alex Smith was taken #1, and Aaron Rodgers fell to #24. Smith played in a spread offense at Utah under Urban Meyer and showed a real pension for fitting the ball into tight windows across the whole field, which he has done in the NFL, except deep throws. He's had a good, if not spectacular career. Rodgers (also from Cal) was viewed as being somewhat of a gunslinger, and a bit wild, but will obviously get into the HOF and be remembered as one of the best ever. So It's a tough guess comparing Wentz and Goff to these two at the time of that draft.

If you look at 2006, Vince Young was taken #3 (by Tenn, against Jeff Fischer's wishes), and Matt Leinhart at 11. Both were way overhyped, with Young expected by some to change the NFL, what Vick couldn't do. Leinhart was supposed to easily jump from USC to the NFL. Despite a good rookie year from Young, both have since admitted they blew their careers.

In 2007 Jamarcus Russell was taken #1, and Brady Quinn fell to #23. At the time Russell was a physical specimen, but a real question mark if he could really play, and how he would. Russell is the biggest bust in NFL history and Lane Kiffen didn't want to draft him. Quinn came into the league a little raw, but with potential, similar to the way Rodgers entered the league. There was talk he would go very high, maybe even #1. But Quinn also believed his own hype and appeared aloof. But he did play okay once he settled in and matured a lot. Not great, but okay.

2008 may be the closest, hopeful bet here. With Matt Ryan (perhaps like Goff) going at 3, and Joe Flacco (perhaps like Wentz) going at 17. Ryan was believed to have great vision and a very good arm. Flacco came from a smaller school, but had a great frame and a great arm. Both Brian Brohm and Chad Henne were taken in the 2nd round.

In 2009 Matt Stafford was taken #1 by Detroit, and no surprise. He played a quick game at George with a very strong arm able to make deep throws. Mark Sanchez was a bit of a surprise taken by the Jets at 5, we all know his career. Josh Freeman was taken at 17, and after a good first two years, fizzled, including a lot of interceptions.

In 2010 Sam Bradford was taken at #1, and expected to make a big impact in the NFL. Recall he was injured his senior year at Oklahoma, and still went #1 anyway. The surprise was Tim Tebow selected at 22 by Denver. Five of the first six picks that year came out of the Big-12, and 3 of the first 4 from Oklahoma. Jimmy Clausen went in the 2nd round, and Colt McCoy in the 3rd.

In 2011 Cam Newton went #1, and Jake Locker at #8, Blane Gabbert at #10, and Christian Ponder at #12. I don't see either Wentz or Goff being like Newton, obviously. Locker was viewed as having a lot of NFL potential all through college, even going back to high school. Gabbert similar. Ponder was a bit of a surprise high pick.

2012 of course saw Luck-RG3 go 1-2 in that amazing QB draft that also saw Wilson, Tannehill, Cousins, Osweiller, Foles, Weeden, Keenum, Kellen Moore and Austin Davis. No one in their right mind thinks Wentz-Goff are equal to Luck-RG3, even with RG3's issues.

2013 saw a dearth of QB's, with EJ Manuel taken at 16, and Geno Smith, once thought of in college as a real pro prospect, falling to the 2nd round. Mike Glennon went in the 3rd round. But the real story was Matt Barkley. Even before playing a down an USC, he was regarded as a likely top pick in the draft. Had he left UFC a year earlier, Matt would have gone in the first round. He fell to the 4th, in what was then a surprise pick by Chip Kelly, and has had an invisible career so far in the NFL.

2014 had Blake Bortles going at 3. This is interesting because Bortles was a high prospect whose stock rose as the draft approached and Jax couldn't resist, but the pick was viewed with trepidation after Gabbert didn't pan out there, but was still young. Manziel went at 22. People forget Cleveland traded with Philly to move from 26 to get him. Teddy Bridgewater, who was the best prospect at the end of the NFL season had an average Combine and Pro Day, and fell to the last pick in Rd. 1. Derek Carr was taken four picks later. Interestingly enough, AJ McCarron fell to the 5th round, taken behind Jimmy Garapolo, Logan Thomas, Tom Savage and just after Aaron Murray.

And finally, Winston-Mariota from last year. Both were Heisman winners. Jamis was almost a sure bet, with some character questions, of which he's seemed to resolve. A few questions on Mariota going as high as 2, but he was deemed to have an extremely high, Russell Wilson level character. I don't hear either Wentz and Goff spoken like either of these two.
 
You missed one: 1998 #1 overall Peyton Manning, #2 overall Ryan Leaf. ;) What a disparity!

I think Wentz was more accurate in his combine workout than Goff. But Goff has plenty of game film to show how accurate he is, and I will take game film anytime over workouts. The one thing Goff has going for him is the I-A talent he played against most likely was a faster group than the I-AA talent Wentz played against. The NFL speed will be faster for both QBs, but Goff should not have as much adjustment to make as Wentz will. In that respect, Goff is a safer bet.

On another subject, back to the Dungee interview. Often enough we see players that are stars on the field but carry off field issues that creates risk for teams who might be considering picking them in the draft. Dungee was asked what won out on draft day (during his entire HC career); risk or reward. He said at Tampa and Indy that he was fortunate enough to have staff and GMs that were on the same page with him. Then he said risk always overrides reward. No matter how good a player was on the field, they just would not take a player that presented too much risk. The fine line is how much risk is too much. They did not get much into that, but I think common sense was probably a common denominator with his staffs.
 
Re:

WOW Alpe, nice recap! Honestly I hope that both of these kids have solid careers because I really dislike Ryan Leaf stories! The thing that tends to get the top QB picks is the crappy teams they go to. Some end up like Troy Aikman, (0-12 his first year, but three Superbowl titles, and a HoF career) while many end up marginal or worse.
 
Whew! Thanks for that rundown on draft QBs, Alpe. Very informative, I knew most of those guys, but not what position they were drafted, and when, etc. I’ve been thinking there are enough data points to estimate the probabilities that a QB taken in a particular round will make it as a starter, and be worth it. I wonder if any NFL teams apply stats in that way, or if it’s all subjective judgment of the coaches.

Regarding the expanded postseason. Like some others here, I think there are already too many teams, and adding two more makes it worse. We’ve discussed before how the post-season is a crap shoot to a great extent, and the more teams make it, the greater the chances that a team that didn’t play that well during the regular season, even a team that finished below .500, might end up winning the SB.

It’s interesting to compare the NFL with the NBA, though, where even a greater number of teams, more than half of the league, make it to the postseason. You might think you would see a lot of teams with relatively poor regular season records winning the championship, but in fact, that doesn’t happen. The team that wins the NBA championship almost always has one of the best regular season records. Why?

One reason is because in basketball, you can play several games a week, so a best of seven series is feasible. If one team is significantly better than another, based on regular season record, it might lose a single game, but is much less likely to lose a best of seven series. Obviously, football does not allow that.

But there’s more to it than that. Baseball’s postseason is also determined by short series, best of five initially (though now there is also a wild card game, a one shot deal), followed by best of seven. A team that is considered better than another, by regular season record, is more likely to win a short series than a single game. Also, baseball’s championship is determined by three postseason series (four for the WC teams), vs. four for the NBA. This should also improve the chances of the best team or one of the best teams going all the way. Yet this frequently does not happen, in fact the best team by regular season record is often eliminated early in the postseason.

Why? In baseball, the difference between the best teams and the worst teams, or the best teams and average teams, is much less than in basketball. The Warriors won nearly 90% of their games this year, which would be unthinkable in MLB. The Warriors, to be sure, had the best regular season record in history, but even in a more ordinary year, one or more teams will win at least 75% of their games. That is still more than any MLB team has ever won. Half a dozen or more NBA teams may win 60% of their games, whereas in MLB maybe only one or two teams will be that successful.

The gap is greater in the NBA, because there are only five players on a team, so one great player—Curry, James, Leonard, Durant/Westbrook, etc.—can have a huge impact, that you don’t see in baseball or football. And the result is that it makes it much more likely that the best team, or one of the best teams, will go all the way. If a team won 75% of its games during the regular season, it has a 75% chance of winning one game against an average team, which it will probably face in the first round. It has nearly a 90% chance of winning a best of seven series. As teams go deeper into the playoffs, the level of competition goes up, and the chances of winning a series decrease, but the result is still that the better, if not the best, teams are selected.

The NFL also features a larger difference between best and worst, or best and average, than MLB. Thus we’ve had two unbeaten teams, several teams that won 15 games (94%), and I can’t remember a year when the best team didn’t win at least 12 games, or 75%. This turns out to be a bigger advantage than a short series, so while upsets are more likely in the NFL—a team like the Giants winning the SB—the best teams are still more likely to go all the way. In that respect, the fairest championships are NBA > NFL > MLB. NFL has the advantage of relatively large differences between teams, MLB has the advantage of short postseason series, while the NBA uniquely benefits from both.

Another thing I like about the NBA is the seeding. As we’ve seen in recent years in the NFL, sometimes a team with a poor record gets into the postseason, because it wins its division, whereas a team with a better record stays home. The wild card helps alleviate that, but not always, and even when it does, frequently a wild card team has to play on the road against a team with a poorer record.

In the NBA, the top eight teams in each conference by record make the postseason. The only exception to this is that a team that wins its division will make the postseason regardless of its record. So divisional competition is not irrelevant. However, it’s very unlikely in an eight team field that a division winner will not have one of the top eight records, and I don’t think it’s ever happened. A division winner is also guaranteed the number four seed, regardless of its rank in wins. Last year, e.g., Portland had the sixth best record in its conference, but the best record in its division, so it was seeded higher than two other teams with a better record. But even then, it ceded home advantage to its first round opponent, the fifth seeded team, because the latter had a better record.

The current NFL playoff scheme follows this pretty closely, except that a division winner gets a home game regardless of whether its record was better than that of its opponent. I think a lot of people want to see that changed, and I think it might, eventually. To be completely like the NBA, the top two teams in each conference would get a bye, even if both were in the same division. But probably that won't happen.

Beyond that, I don't think there's anything more that can be done to make the NFL postseason fairer—except, of course, eliminate some of the teams, which will never happen.
 
Merckx index said:
The current NFL playoff scheme follows this pretty closely, except that a division winner gets a home game regardless of whether its record was better than that of its opponent. I think a lot of people want to see that changed, and I think it might, eventually. To be completely like the NBA, the top two teams in each conference would get a bye, even if both were in the same division. But probably that won't happen.
Unfortunately, I think a lot of people don't. I've seen this debated on NFL forums and the popular response is always - "win your division". There seems to in general in America be this obsession with "winners", with people who "win" regardless of the circumstances, being revered above all else.
Good players who won multiple championships on great teams are considered better than great players who didn't win as many because they were on worse teams. It doesn't matter because they are "winners".

Similarly, people very aggresively want to keep the current NFL system rewarding teams that top crap divisions, because they are "winners", and a 13 win team in the NFC Best, are "losers", as they didn't win their division, so losers deserve nothing.
 
As if winning more games in another division isn't "winning".

I agree with everyone else, I do not want to see more playoff games. I don't want to see a longer season either, but greed usually wins out, eventually.

Here's an article on NFL talking about the Rams "secret" workout with Jeff Goff, and why he'll be taken first by them.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000653513/article/rams-topsecret-qb-tour-bred-blockbuster-trade-for-no-1-pick

Brandon Browner signs a one-year deal with Seattle. I'm sure he'll be very welcomed back, as a former member of the Leigon of Boom. However, he had MCL surgery, and a sub-par year with the Saints, marred by penalties. So I wouldn't expect him to start.
 
Re:

jmdirt said:
Hey Alpe, as we've discussed ESPN.com is part of "the four letter network", but does provide quick scores, highlights, and headlines (as well as local radio). I read other sources like MMQB, but what www. do you prefer? I ran from SI many years ago, but just took a look and it seems to have changed considerably (I know MMQB is their baby). I'm interested to hear what www. others like for sports news.
I read a lot of bleacherreport.com. Not the greatest and the polar opposite of MMQB, which is very in depth, but it has frequent updates which I like. I'm usually looking for a quick read in between tasks.
 
The Hitch said:
Merckx index said:
The current NFL playoff scheme follows this pretty closely, except that a division winner gets a home game regardless of whether its record was better than that of its opponent. I think a lot of people want to see that changed, and I think it might, eventually. To be completely like the NBA, the top two teams in each conference would get a bye, even if both were in the same division. But probably that won't happen.
Unfortunately, I think a lot of people don't. I've seen this debated on NFL forums and the popular response is always - "win your division". There seems to in general in America be this obsession with "winners", with people who "win" regardless of the circumstances, being revered above all else.
Good players who won multiple championships on great teams are considered better than great players who didn't win as many because they were on worse teams. It doesn't matter because they are "winners".

Similarly, people very aggresively want to keep the current NFL system rewarding teams that top crap divisions, because they are "winners", and a 13 win team in the NFC Best, are "losers", as they didn't win their division, so losers deserve nothing.
While there is certainly a strong "everyone loves a winner" streak in the American culture, I think your analysis as pertains to the NFL divisions is fairly off.

Most fans I know (a whole lot) have an affinity for the division competition, but recognize if often results in poor outcomes. No one likes a mediocre team getting in the playoffs. The division thing is cool because of the history against the other teams in the divisions. There are historical rivalries which fans really enjoy, like Cowboys/Giants/Redskins, Raiders/Broncos/Chiefs, etc. It's not about "being a winner" as pertains to winning one's division. It's about the identity of the division (the wild west, the AFC Norris, etc.) which gives teams and fan bases a closer connection to the team and the culture. There is a very different culture in the west than in the midwest or east coast, and the teams and the way they play have often reflected those cultural values. It also leads to stereotyping which can be accurate (Pittsburg playing a very "blue collar" brand of football) or very off (the Niners of the 80's were a "finesse" team), largely because of the culture surrounding those teams. Playing teams in the division can in many cases solidify those cultural ideas.

I think most fans don't want to see the traditional rivalries messed with any more than they have been already. That said, most agree that a straight "best record" solution would be more fair. But maybe not more fun. I think most are open to a modification, but I've not heard one yet that services the affinity for divisional play and also is more fair. Generally we're OK with an imperfect system which we enjoy for other reasons.

There is no perfect system. Even taking the best records in a conference is problematic. In the NBA, when is the last time more than 2 or 3 teams from the eastern conference were legitimately in the top 10 teams in the league? 1991? The east sucks and has for a long, long time. There is a legitimate argument that the winner of the east has no business in the Finals quite regularly.
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
Brandon Browner signs a one-year deal with Seattle. I'm sure he'll be very welcomed back, as a former member of the Leigon of Boom. However, he had MCL surgery, and a sub-par year with the Saints, marred by penalties. So I wouldn't expect him to start.
Well, Browner is a familiar face and he has a warm connection with Seattle fans. So, yeah, he will be welcomed back. But his one year contract is no guarantee he makes the roster. I mean, one could argue that he was the worst CB in the NFL last year because he was the most penalized player in the entire NFL with 24 flags. The next closest was DE Jerry Hughes (BUF) with 14, and then Ndamukong Suh had 13. But if he is fully recovered from injury his career could revitalize in Seattle because of the defense as a whole. Mainly, Earl Thomas' speed gives the CB position some freedoms Browner did not have in NO or NE. Still, when Browner was good in Seattle as a pro bowler he still collected a lot of dirty laundry. So, we'll see. I see this move as a depth move.
 
red_flanders said:
The Hitch said:
Merckx index said:
The current NFL playoff scheme follows this pretty closely, except that a division winner gets a home game regardless of whether its record was better than that of its opponent. I think a lot of people want to see that changed, and I think it might, eventually. To be completely like the NBA, the top two teams in each conference would get a bye, even if both were in the same division. But probably that won't happen.
Unfortunately, I think a lot of people don't. I've seen this debated on NFL forums and the popular response is always - "win your division". There seems to in general in America be this obsession with "winners", with people who "win" regardless of the circumstances, being revered above all else.
Good players who won multiple championships on great teams are considered better than great players who didn't win as many because they were on worse teams. It doesn't matter because they are "winners".

Similarly, people very aggresively want to keep the current NFL system rewarding teams that top crap divisions, because they are "winners", and a 13 win team in the NFC Best, are "losers", as they didn't win their division, so losers deserve nothing.
While there is certainly a strong "everyone loves a winner" streak in the American culture, I think your analysis as pertains to the NFL divisions is fairly off.

Most fans I know (a whole lot) have an affinity for the division competition, but recognize if often results in poor outcomes. No one likes a mediocre team getting in the playoffs. The division thing is cool because of the history against the other teams in the divisions. There are historical rivalries which fans really enjoy, like Cowboys/Giants/Redskins, Raiders/Broncos/Chiefs, etc. It's not about "being a winner" as pertains to winning one's division. It's about the identity of the division (the wild west, the AFC Norris, etc.) which gives teams and fan bases a closer connection to the team and the culture. There is a very different culture in the west than in the midwest or east coast, and the teams and the way they play have often reflected those cultural values. It also leads to stereotyping which can be accurate (Pittsburg playing a very "blue collar" brand of football) or very off (the Niners of the 80's were a "finesse" team), largely because of the culture surrounding those teams. Playing teams in the division can in many cases solidify those cultural ideas.

I think most fans don't want to see the traditional rivalries messed with any more than they have been already. That said, most agree that a straight "best record" solution would be more fair. But maybe not more fun. I think most are open to a modification, but I've not heard one yet that services the affinity for divisional play and also is more fair. Generally we're OK with an imperfect system which we enjoy for other reasons.

There is no perfect system. Even taking the best records in a conference is problematic. In the NBA, when is the last time more than 2 or 3 teams from the eastern conference were legitimately in the top 10 teams in the league? 1991? The east sucks and has for a long, long time. There is a legitimate argument that the winner of the east has no business in the Finals quite regularly.
+1 Bingo.
On the topic of winning divisions and hosting a playoff game, vs a revised format with seeding based on season record I would just add: OFC the players prefer to play in front of their home crowd, but for the most part I really don't think players care where they play. Just the right to play and accept the challenge of beating the opponent on their field, they don't back down from because of mental toughness. So, I don't think the players would be opposed to such a change. As a fan I would not be opposed either. But the same fans of 2nd place teams who cry because they don't get a home game under the current formatting, the next year could be division winners with an 8-8 record and host a 2nd place team from another division with a better record. Then they are all for the current format. Who cares? Just play the game.
 
red_flanders said:
There is no perfect system. Even taking the best records in a conference is problematic. In the NBA, when is the last time more than 2 or 3 teams from the eastern conference were legitimately in the top 10 teams in the league? 1991? The east sucks and has for a long, long time. There is a legitimate argument that the winner of the east has no business in the Finals quite regularly.
Agree, good post.
 
And now the Eagles have acquired the 2nd pick from Browns in a trade;

Schefter on Twitter:
Eagles acquire 2 overall and a 4th round pick in 2017 from CLeV. Browns receive 8th overall pick, a 3rd (#77 overall), a 4th (#100 overall), a 1st round pick in 2017 and a 2nd round pick in 2018.
This is mental...the Eagles fans are raging on Reddit :D

Chargers' pick next up on the trading block?
 
I'd be curious. Are Philly fans raging mad or raging glad? I have a guess but have not read anything.

SI had a blurb on Manziel begging the question of who was the biggest draft bust, Leaf or Manziel. I still give that distinction to Leaf, but Manziel is closing in.
 
Re:

Hey, don't sell long Jamarcus Russell!

As to Philly, they didn't quite trade away the farm the way the Rams did, but they came close, for again, an unknown.

I won't bother repeating my same post about how the NFL gets emotional about these picks and risks a great deal on them based on hope, blind faith.

And this comes off signing Chase Daniels, a career back-up, to a fairly nice deal. Bradford sits with one more year on his contract, and I don't care who the Eagles pick, Sam has to be the starter going into this season, and all 16 games if he's health enough, and plays decent.

The interesting thing is what the Browns are doing. They now have a LOT to build on going into the future. But who is their QB of the future? This year it's probably McCown with RG3 sitting and playing when McCown gets hurt. But in 2017? Is it RG3? Or do the Browns hold onto these picks thinking they can move them next year to get a player they want? Like, AJ McCarron? There's talk their new font office guys are sabermetrics type guys, which explains more of the trade to me.

http://www.clevelandbrowns.com/team/front-office.html
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS