National Football League

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Jun 15, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
True, me too. We watch the NFL with blinders, but I still think the best teams usually win.

If so, he is the greatest physical athlete to ever climb aboard a bicycle. More God given talent than Merckx, Hinault, LeMond, Ulrich, etc.

That's how I see it anyway.
That one got lost in the numerous SKY/Froome threads. But it´s worth to answer:
Alpe you know me, i never again can watch the NFL with blinders, and i usually don´t think the best team normally wins. You know that. :D
OTOH, what will i do in december? I think i have to comeback. Poor me. Addiction. :eek:

Hell, what´s going on with Aaron t-shirt sells. That is really sick. :confused: ...

In the end we shall not forget, the NFL has 2.500 players under contract (active, inactive, 80-Men-rosters). It´s just "normal" that some bad apples show up there too. Players might be drug users, gamblers, cheaters, but i never bought into the idea that they are more criminal than the average Joe. I guess Brock would agree. :)

About Froome: I trust him more than anyone else in the peloton. But that´s never a guarantee, because it´s still pro sports. You know.
 
$0.02:
1. Ryan Tannehill - Possible. Everyone surprised he did as well as he did last year, and now think it can't last. Maybe losing LT Jake Long contributes to this speculation. Not buying it.
2. Alfred Morris - I'm not buying this one on the list either.
3. Colin Kaepernick - As a junior he should not be on the list. Period.
4. Bruce Irvin - He will be experimented with at the SAM position. Had terrific offseason. Experimentation can be a bad sign, but with the glut of good DEs on this team and lack of great SAM, this move makes sense. Will it work? Who knows, and that justifies why he's on this list. Will it end in slump? No.
5. Courtney Upshaw - I'm neutral on this.
6. Robert Griffin III - Mirer was ROY, and followed that with being worse than just a slump. It can happen. Not with RG3. Defenses will be prepared for the option, which could contribute to this speculation. And RG will have to run differently, with less risk, may also contribute. By that rationale others like Wilson should make the list. Not going to happen with RG (or Wilson).
7. Morris Claiborne - Yeah, team needs some magic, and meddling owner Jones, who's not a football mind, ain't helping either. New DC Monte Kiffin (a 72-year-old former Tampa DC who ran a cover 2 4-3 and not the 'Boys 3-4, and who spent last 3 years at Ten Vols and USC) may not be the recipe for turnaround. This may actually set up players for a slump on the basis of change alone. Kiffin's got a good rep though, and so maybe it works out.
8. Quinton Coples - had 22 tackles and 5.5 sacks in 16 games as rook. Not exactly sparkling, means has more room to improve than backslide. The team though, ouch! Major magic needed.
 
Post-draft, which went very well for them, the 49ers were installed as early SB favorites:

49ers 6-1
Broncos
Pats (this was before Hernandez, and I think before they lost Welker?)
Seahawks

What a turnaround for the NFC West, a couple of years ago so weak that the winner had a sub .500 record. The two games between these two teams (maybe three, could meet in the postseason), should be brutal. The Rams figure to be decent, too, while the Cardinals I think will be the doormat again, though their future is looking better.

Foxxy, don't know if you heard, but about a month ago, Kaepernick was invited to throw out the opening pitch at a SF Giants game. He probably set a record of sorts. His "ceremonial toss" was clocked at 87 mph! The guy behind the plate catching it was quite shocked! Gotta believe if he went to MLB training camp and worked on his mechanics he would throw in the 90s. But he's already faster than one of the Giants starters (Zito).

It won't happen, but interesting to speculate if he tried to become a two sports star like Bo Jackson and Neon Deon. What they did was difficult, but it would be much harder to be a QB and pitcher simultaneously. You couldn't have the starting QB sitting out the first few weeks of the season while he was playing baseball. Starting pitchers only play every 5th game, so you could try to work out a schedule where you were never pitching on Sunday, but that still wouldn't work well, because after a start, you need to rest your arm, can't be throwing footballs.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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Merckx index said:
Foxxy, don't know if you heard, but about a month ago, Kaepernick was invited to throw out the opening pitch at a SF Giants game. He probably set a record of sorts. His "ceremonial toss" was clocked at 87 mph! The guy behind the plate catching it was quite shocked! Gotta believe if he went to MLB training camp and worked on his mechanics he would throw in the 90s.
I think we discussed it before. He was drafted to the MLB (?), AFIR, and threw 90+ mph fastballs. Many (non-butter-armed-like-Mirer) QB´s were pitchers and QB´s in high school/college. It´s natural. If you can throw a ball you can do it everywere. I mean besides all the noise around the-QB-Position, the talent to throw a ball is the No.-1 requirement by far for a QB.
Only that the scouts in Cleveland and Seattle for example didn´t know that by drafting Frye and Mirer. Seems the guys get lost over wonderlic tests, 40 yard dashes and other nonsense...
If you have no wrist snap and can flick the ball, you can´t complete the sometimes required 20+ yard passes. Even in todays NFL you can´t fool opponents by only throwing dump offs and screens. Well, the mentioned teams found out the hard way...

Alpe d'Huez said:
I have watched the vid. No way that was 98 mph. Looked more like a relaxed 70-throw. Which is normal, it was a ceremonial pitch... I am sure Wilson has a heck of an arm.

How is Philly doing? Do they still have Vick under contract? If so, the Eagles will be the team i root for this year. Should be a Froome*-Like-Show then. ;)
It will be exciting to watch...

* I know many hate him. But he is fun to watch, everybody must admit. :D
 
Jul 23, 2009
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No real intelligence and erratic throws. Was exciting while in Atlanta, but then again he did it with his legs along with Duckett and Dunn. Dumb as they come in my opinion. Bit of a psycho I guess.

Regarding two-sports athletes. Don't know why anybody in their right mind would chose to play in the NFL instead of MLB.
Regarding Bo, anybody seen You don't know Bo?
 
Nov 24, 2009
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zastomito said:
No real intelligence and erratic throws. Was exciting while in Atlanta, but then again he did it with his legs along with Duckett and Dunn. Dumb as they come in my opinion. Bit of a psycho I guess.

Regarding two-sports athletes. Don't know why anybody in their right mind would chose to play in the NFL instead of MLB.
Regarding Bo, anybody seen You don't know Bo?
Yes. Its very good.
 
Jul 20, 2010
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The scoring takes standard principles and adds interesting wrinkes like first downs and pass completions/incompletions.

We will start 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1TE, 1 RB/WR, 1 WR/TE, 1K and 1 DEF and have 11 reserve spots.

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That video was funny. Also showed many of the things I think are "wrong" with MLS soccer. (Listed many times before, won't repeat them).

FoxxyBrown1111 said:
I have watched the vid. No way that was 98 mph. Looked more like a relaxed 70-throw. Which is normal, it was a ceremonial pitch... I am sure Wilson has a heck of an arm.
They still haven't admitted it, but it was a gag. All for fun.

How is Philly doing? Do they still have Vick under contract?
Yes. Latest though is that Chip Kelly has been impressed with Nick Foles athleticism and learning his system. Still, I do think Vick will be starter on week 1. We just have to see what Vick can do. He has been terribly erratic and inaccurate in the past, so we'll see...

No one gave JaMarcus Russell a real chance, though the Bears did work him out one day. Vince Young, who filed bankruptcy recently, did however get a job with Green Bay, though he may not make the cut.

In other NFL news, injuries already taking shape in the league. The biggest maybe Percy Harvin in Seattle, who likely will miss at least 8 weeks (of the regular season). Maybe more. In Atlanta, starting OT Mike Johnson is also out for many weeks with ankle surgery. Packers already have a lot of minor injuries. Most notably RB Eddie Lacy, who may miss a few pre-season games.

Regular season starts Thursday, Sept 5. Ravens at Broncos.
 
Jun 22, 2009
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Hi Alpe.

RG3 will definitely be ready to start week 1. He certainly looked sharp during the warm up before the Titans game. An astonishing recovery.
 
Entertaining link rating all coaches. Pretty much agree. Rex too high.

Having a hard time watching much of the pre-season. Nice to see a few players you won't see play, but that's not very telling. Just some thoughts from what I did see:

Philly may still finish no better than 7-9. Didn't see hyperdrive from Chip Kelley's offense, but they did look good, and while Vick seemed to be able to pull the trigger faster than Foles, nothing jumped out at me., mostly because the Eagles offense looked good, but their defense looked weak.

Kansas City will improve from last year, no doubt. Stacked with talent, proven decent coach. Alex Smith looked quite good, in two drives. But as he himself said, "It's a preseason game." But from what I've seen I expect them to maybe be 9-7.

Tebow looked as bad in NE as he did on the Jets. Worse than when in Denver, for whatever the reason. Feel bad for the guy in some ways, but I do think he'll survive the cut.

Jets are going to be entertaining. Sanchez pick-6 was just beautiful. I agree with Michael Irvin, Jets QB shuffle should be between McElroy and Geno. Sanchez may be slightly better, most of the time, but is not the future. McElroy looked fairly good actually.

Percy Harvin out for 8+ weeks in Seattle will hurt, as will Crabtree out for that long in SF. Or they could come back and give their teams an extra weapon at the right time.

Raiders have four QBs, all different, none that impressive. Flynn looked stabile at least. Pryor has worked hard, but still makes a few poor throwing decisions, but looked good in the read option (that Flynn will never run, so how does the team prep for this, two playbooks?). Both McGloin and Wilson both showed good arms, but rookie tendencies, more so Wilson though. He may someday be the franchise QB, but he may not even make the team and lose the 3rd string spot to McGloin also.

Landry Jones struggled somewhat for Pittsburgh, but one could say the Giants defense continues to look good.

Have to wonder why McNabb can't keep his trap shut and is so antagonistic towards the Redskins, and even RG3. Griffin showed both intelligence and class in his response.
 
zastomito said:
Lewis, Philbin, John Harbaugh too low, Pagano, Tomlin, Frazier, Shanahan too high.
Tomlin maybe, he does have a SB ring, keeps putting winning teams on the field, and the players all like him. Shanahan I agree with you there. One good year now with a stellar, once-every-generation, rookie QB moved him up beyond his own talent. John Harbaugh probably could be higher.

Tom T. said:
Brady hurt in practice today. Same knee as 2008. Severity of injury not known at the moment.
Apparently a sprain, but a more direct evaluation later today. Belicheck is notorious for withholding injury information on players, so if he doesn't need surgery, it will be hard to get the truth. But it does show that Tom's aging, and how fragile their system may be. Several Pats with minor injuries already. I won't be surprised if we only see Brady wearing a red shirt and a "no touch" policy in practice, and him only play a couple series in the pre-season, if at all.

Packers also already facing a rash of small injuries. Atlanta several as well. And we're less than 2 weeks into the pre-season.
 
Alpe d'Huez said:
Have to wonder why McNabb can't keep his trap shut and is so antagonistic towards the Redskins, and even RG3. Griffin showed both intelligence and class in his response.
Also on NFL.com (sorry I don't have link) was Steven A. Smith and Skip Bayless debating on first take the McNabb-RG3 situation. Smith's angle was more about why current players don't call & ask McNabb for advice and why current players don't want to listen to McNabb. Smith said that over McNabb's career Donovan never took a stand on anything, so why would current players care to listen now. Ok, I guess I won't argue that point, which was an interesting take on the situation.

Skip had a better point, and I don't usually like listening to Skip because he sometimes takes some odd stands and says goofy things. On top of that, I have to close my eyes and not watch Skip express himself because all those shoulder rolls he does, like some reincarnated strip dancer, kind of creeps me out. Anyway, he pointed out that McNabb must have felt really dissed by being traded away from Philly by ex Philly coach Andy Reid. The worst part of that trade, in Donovan's eyes, is that he must have felt the most disrespected that a player could feel because Reid just didn't trade him, Reid traded him to division rival Washington Redskins. Then to top that, McNabb did not play well in his one year stint as the starting Redskins QB. Those might be the undercurrents prompting McNabb to strike out.

I agree with you that RG3 wins the class character contest with DM.
 
I recall McNabb being bitter when he was benched in Washington, but it was clear at the time he was not getting the job done. He was like many aging athletes who didn't quite have it anymore, but thought they still had something left if they just got another chance, and he couldn't let go. Last word on him. Don't like the guy much.

Eagles offense again played fairly well, with both Vick and Foles. I have to think Vick must be the starter though on week 1. It just seems his ability to move around and extend plays and as I said before, pull the trigger, will work best in Kelly's offense. Vick prone to mistakes, often costly mistakes, but in an Oregon-like system, the topside with him must be considered worth the risk.

Tom T. said:
Brady hurt in practice today. Same knee as 2008. Severity of injury not known at the moment.
I gave the incorrect response to this before. The correct response should have been:

T-E-B-O-W!!!!

(Actually, Tom was back on the practice field yesterday). :)
 
Offensively, NFC East better watch out for Philly. They are going to be a different offensive team under Chip Kelly. Hyperdrive is a good word to describe it. Up tempo. PLUS they will be spreading the field out more. Watch out for the run game or dump offs to RBs in the flats. AND in preseason, Vick has shown his mobility. They only negative I see against Vick right now is his accuracy is a bit off, even on completions. On some of the highlights, his throws have been a little behind where they should be, causing the receivers to reach back (maybe even slow down to reach back), or even turn a 180 to make a catch instead of hitting the receiver in stride. But it will be interesting.

If I was opposing defenses, and if Philly's offense lines up with an empty backfield (I mean really empty... not motioning a RB out of the backfield), I'd try some code 1 blitzes. That's just an automatic blitz from any defensive formation, even if blitz was not called before the play. That should force the QB to throw some hot routes (hot being under pressure). If Vick or Foles have accuracy problems, forcing them to toss it under pressure could result in some picks. Or a sack if the QB doesn't see blitz coming and doesn't know where to get the ball off to.

I'm sorry NE fans. I really respect Brady as a QB, but everyone keeps misspelling his name. It's BABY. He's not really hurt and he'll be fine.
 
Not confident in he Eagles defense, but they will score.

Big props to Tavaris Jackson. Essentially gave up being a starter in this league and took a pay cut to return to Seattle, and he's having an excellent pre-season.

Starting to form thoughts on this season. AFC North and NFC South should be interesting. Balt stlll good without Lewis and Reid? Flacco overpaid? Cincy on the rise? i wouldnt write the Steelers off. New managemant in Cleveland, and Weeden quietly playing very sharp in pre-season. A lot of people pencil in Atlanta in NFC Sputh, but I'm not so sure. NO looks sharp, and motivated with Sean Payton back, and Carolina young and solid on both sides of ball, if Cam can be consistent.
 
Agree wit you on Eagles.

Tavaris Jackson's play this preseason has been phenomenal. TJax gets my nod over Brady Quinn for the backup role. In Saturday's game vs Denver, both Wilson and TJax had similar stats and ratings of about 141. And TJax has shown the ability to hit the deep ball with touch in both preseason games. Quinn's rating was 78 in Saturday's game, but he is not playing badly. Quinn just does not look nearly as comfortable as TJax. Word has it when TJax was let go by Buffalo several Seahawk players called TJax to encourage him to return to Seattle, they thought that much of him.

Agree AFC North & NFC South should be interesting. I'll take my shot at the NFC South first. Strength of schedule looks like this for 2013 (REDZONE):
Team Win %..........Team Win %
Panthers 0.543..........Saints 0.539
Rams 0.539..........Lions 0.539
Ravens 0.535..........Packers 0.533
Cardinals 0.520..........49ers 0.520
Dolphins 0.520..........Seattle 0.516
Vikings 0.516..........Jaguars 0.508
Bengals 0.508..........Patriots 0.508
Falcons 0.504..........Bears 0.502
Buccs 0.500..........Redskins 0.498
Eagles 0.496..........Jets 0.496
Steelers 0.492..........Browns 0.492
Titans 0.488..........Giants 0.480
Cowboys 0.475..........Chiefs 0.473
Bills 0.473..........Texans 0.472
Raiders 0.469..........Colts 0.461
Chargers 0.457..........Broncos 0.430

Panthers and Saints... toughest schedule in the NFL, with the Falcs and Bucs sitting down there in the middle of the pack. Advantage Falcons.

2012 was an exception, but generally he who won a Falcs-Saints tilt in recent memory is he who had the ball last. Offensive slugfests, without a lot of defense. So what's new for 2013?

Saints getting coach Peyton back will help, and Saints offense can keep pace with the best offenses in the league when all the parts are there with the best in the league. Problem with Saints in 2012 was their pass defense was terrible last year (one of league's worst). So what did the Saints do in the draft and free agency?
1. They got 9 year vet safety Jim Leonhard off Denver. At 5'8" and a buck 88 he is just a depth acquisition.
2. Got 5 year vet CB Keenan Lewis from Pitt. The 6'1" 209 lb Lewis is their top FA pickup. Penciled him in as starter. He should work opposite Saints best CB in Jabari Greer (who's a 10 year vet).
3. Drafted safety Kenny Vaccaro (Texas Longhorns). The 6'0" 214 pounder is great athlete, can cover, and provides good run support. Saints starters at safety last year struggled, so Vaccaro has shot to start.
Question is, are those acquisitions enough to handle all the Falcs offensive weapons (TE Gonzo, WRs Jones & White, and Matt Ryan... oh and let's not forget FA acquisition Steven Jackson, who I have always loved as a runner and who's also a great receiver out of the backfield)? Until Saints prove otherwise, I still have the advantage to Falcons.

Now flip to the Falcons, who have to battle the tough Saints offense (Brees OFC, and weapon WRs Colston and Moore - both 1000+ yards in 2012 - and maybe the best TE Graham if healthy). So what did Atlanta do to upgrade their defense to battle those guys?
1. Drafted CB Desmond Trufant (Wash. Huskies) in 1st round of 2013. Pencil him as starter to work opposite one of the best cover corners in NFL... Asante Samuel, who's 11 year vet.
2. Drafted CB Robert Alford (SE Louisiana) in 2nd round of 2013. Speed guy had good Senior Bowl. A depth acquisition, possible nickel corner.
3. Drafted S Kemal Ishmael (Central Florida) in 7th round of 2013. POY honors in Conference USA at CB. Rangy speedster is a depth acquisition behind solid safeties Moore and DeCloud. Don't laugh because of the round he was picked at.
4. Drafted a couple DE's in rounds 4 & 5 with good upside, and another SS (round 7).

Obviously, acquisition wise, it's too early to tell which team helped themselves more in FA and the draft. But I think Saints had more to make up for than the Falcs, and the Falcs acquisitions grade out a bit higher.

A lot of people are picking the Saints to take the division on the basis of the return of Sean Peyton and a Brees return to form. I still like the Falcons to take the division over the Saints. Bucs and Panthers just have too much work to do.

Maybe the AFC North will be a later entry. Just a hip-shot, I still like the Raves despite the defensive losses. They still have a solid DLine, and the offense is fine. But Cincy will push them as a legit contender for the division, and the Browns are close to breaking through. I kind of miss the old Bengals- Browns rivalry. Well, it has never really gone away. It just has not been as significant of late. And can never count Pitt out, but they have more areas to make up ground.
 
Jul 17, 2009
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What are all y'all's thoughts on preseason? Are preseason performances and results indicative of the type of season a team will have?

watching the Rams week a$$ performance I am worried. a great defense last year cant tackle and allows for catches with DB's like 5 yards off the ball or receiver.

Also Sam Bradford cant look off backs. cannon arm but always treading the needle. hes just locked in on primary receiver which is Givens.
T Austin kid is fast but small and cant catch with his hands. his catch radius is like the size of a bmx wheel. and he looks surprised coverage is as fast as he is. needs better routs. weighting in at a buck 75 if they put him on kick or punt return he could lose his head. imagine a 240 pound dude running a 4.4 40 hitting him at full speed??? gave up many picks for him hope they find way to use him

I'm not optimistic given the division and an improved AZ team. 5-11 and dont pay Bradford the 14 million next season. will 5-11 give us a qb?
 
Jul 17, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
I recall McNabb being bitter when he was benched in Washington, but it was clear at the time he was not getting the job done. He was like many aging athletes who didn't quite have it anymore, but thought they still had something left if they just got another chance, and he couldn't let go. Last word on him. Don't like the guy much.

Eagles offense again played fairly well, with both Vick and Foles. I have to think Vick must be the starter though on week 1. It just seems his ability to move around and extend plays and as I said before, pull the trigger, will work best in Kelly's offense. Vick prone to mistakes, often costly mistakes, but in an Oregon-like system, the topside with him must be considered worth the risk.


I gave the incorrect response to this before. The correct response should have been:

T-E-B-O-W!!!!

(Actually, Tom was back on the practice field yesterday). :)
Tebow on Pats is kind of awesome. you know they will use him, although red zone has been his weak spot in the NFL Coach B is rumored to work it with him on direct snap or even tight end.
 

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