Monthly Archives: January, 2016

2014 NFL Re-Draft

In April of 2014, it was a lock that Jadeveon Clowney would be the first pick to the Houston Texans in the NFL draft. While injuries have kept him from proving his skills, other defensive players have dominated from week one of their rookie season. These players are Khalil Mack and Aaron Donald. Both players are All-Pro players in just the second year of their careers. Would the Texans elect one of these players to play alongside JJ Watt? Meanwhile, quarterbacks Blake Bortles and Derek Carr appear to be the NFL’s future at their position. If the Texans decide to go quarterback, who will they pick? Following the Texans choice, what other players are most prepared to be a top 10 pick? Let’s answer these questions in our 2014 NFL Re-Draft!

Pick Team Original Pick New Pick
1. Houston Texans Jadeveon Clowney, OLB, South Carolina Blake Bortles, QB, UCF
2. St. Louis Rams Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn Aaron Donald, DT, Pitt
3. Jacksonville Jaguars Blake Bortles, QB, UCF Odell Beckham Jr, WR, LSU
4. Buffalo Bills Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State
5. Oakland Raiders Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo
6. Atlanta Falcons Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M Zack Martin, OL, Notre Dame
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
8. Cleveland Browns Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
9. Minnesota Vikings Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA CJ Mosley, ILB, Alabama
10. Detroit Lions Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina Malcolm Butler, CB, West Alabama
11. Tennessee Titans Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan Joel Bitonio, OG, Nevada
12. New York Giants Odell Beckham Jr, WR, LSU Allen Robinson, WR, Penn State
13. St. Louis Rams Aaron Donald, DT, Pitt Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
14. Chicago Bears Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA
15. Pittsburgh Steelers Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State
16. Dallas Cowboys Zack Martin, OL, Notre Dame Trai Turner, OG, LSU
17. Baltimore Ravens CJ Mosley, ILB, Alabama Corey Linsley, C, Ohio State
18. New York Jets Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville Deone Bucannon, S, Louisville
19 Miami Dolphins Ja’wuan James, OT, Tennessee Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State
20. New Orleans Saints Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
21. Green Bay Packers HaHa Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama Jadeveon Clowney, OLB, South Carolina
22. Cleveland Browns Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
23. Kansas City Chiefs Dee Ford, DE, Auburn Jarvis Landry, WR, LSU
24. Cincinnati Bengals Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State Jeremy Hill, RB, LSU
25. San Diego Chargers Jason Verrett, CB, TCU Jason Verrett, CB, TCU
26. Philadelphia Eagles Marcus Smith, OLB, Louisville HaHa Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
27. Arizona Cardinals Deone Bucannon, S, Louisville Devonta Freeman, RB, Florida State
28. Carolina Panthers Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State EJ Gaines, CB, Missouri
29. New England Patriots Dominique Easley, DT, Florida Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
30. San Francisco 49ers Jimmie Ward, S, Northern Illinois Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State
31. Denver Broncos Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech
32. Minnesota Vikings Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois


Breakdown of the Top 10:

  1. Houston Texans

Original: Jadeveon Clowney, OLB, South Carolina

New: Blake Bortles, QB, UCF


Discussion: Clowney seemed like the obvious choice here to compliment JJ Watt, but injuries have kept him off the field. The Texans instead lock up their future quarterback that they have been desperately searching for.


  1. St. Louis Rams

Original: Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

New: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh


Discussion: Greg Robinson has not reached his potential yet, so the Rams look to the defensive line instead by picking Aaron Donald, a player they drafted 13th overall in this draft. Donald is a contender for Defensive Player of the Year in 2015 and it makes the most sense.


  1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Original: Blake Bortles, QB, UCF

New: Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU


Discussion: With Bortles off the board, the Jaguars opt to take Odell Beckham Jr., one the league’s best wide receivers. They could go quarterback, but OBJ has all the talent in the world for his position.


  1. Buffalo Bills

Original: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

New: Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State


Discussion: While Sammy Watkins is still on the board, the Bills decide to pick their quarterback in Derek Carr. Having a breakout season in 2015, Carr has a bright future in the NFL.


  1. Oakland Raiders

Original: Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo

New: Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo


Discussion: Like I said going into the 2014 NFL Draft, Khalil Mack would be the best player of the bunch. After being an All-Pro player in two positions (DE and OLB) in 2015, the Raiders have no doubt about their pick.


  1. Atlanta Falcons

Original: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M

New: Zack Martin, OL, Notre Dame


Discussion: The Falcons decide to improve their offensive line by picking Zach Martin of Notre Dame. Martin has had a great career with the Cowboys and is one of the NFL’s best interior linemen.


  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Original: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M

New: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan


Discussion: The Buccaneers could go with Mike Evans again, but their offensive line needs some work. Taylor Lewan would be the perfect pick to help their pass protection.


  1. Cleveland Browns

Original: Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

New: Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville


Discussion: Cleveland has had bad luck in recent drafts, and this included Gilbert. The Browns have needed a quarterback for several years now, and Bridgewater is their best bet.


  1. Minnesota Vikings

Original: Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA

New: CJ Mosley, ILB, Alabama


Discussion: Anthony Barr has been great since his rookie season, but one linebacker on the board is better. CJ Mosley is a top 5 inside linebacker, a position that needs improvement as soon as possible.


  1. Detroit Lions

Original: Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina

New: Malcolm Butler, CB, West Alabama


Discussion: Eric Ebron has been a disappointment, so Detroit elects to pass on him. Instead, they bring in one of the best young cornerbacks in the NFL, Malcolm Butler. Although he is known for this game-winning play of SBXLIX, Butler has improved every week playing as the number one cornerback for New England.


Weekly Round-Up – Jan. 24th, 2016


1. Conference Championship Weekend

Tom: What a couple of games! I did not anticipate the blow out in the NFC or Brady’s inability to deal with the pressure. I was 50% calling this weekend which brings my total to 6-4 which puts me behind Josh at 8-2. My AFC game ball goes to Wade Phillips. His tweet summed it up “going unemployed to Superbowl”. He kept the Patriots guessing all day and it made the difference. My NFC game ball goes to Carson Palmer and his six turnovers. Even though the Panthers offense was tearing it up it seemed like the Cards weren’t really too far out of it but then here came Palmer saying HERES THE W.

Josh: The NFL playoffs have been exciting, and last weekend wasn’t any different. The Denver vs New England game was one to remember for sure. Brady was pressured nearly every play and still made plays. Also, he made several mistakes. When was the last time he threw for more interceptions than touchdowns in a game? Going into the game, I knew Denver’s defense was good, but not THAT good. Von Miller played on a different level than everyone else, making plays in both the run and pass game. In the NFC Championship, the Panthers continued to dominate. Cam Newton was spectacular (again) and he locked up the NFL MVP Award in the process. The Carolina defense, led by the best linebacker in the NFL in Luke Kuechly, completely shut down the NFL’s #1 offense. Overall, it was an exciting weekend and it is sad to see the season closing to an end.


2. Kathryn Smith hired by Buffalo Bills as NFL’s first full-time female assistant.

Tom: The Bills have been at the forefront of gender equality for some time now by hiring the first female scout and now the first female coach. I do not know much about Kathryn or her background but I am assuming she knows a thing or two otherwise she wouldn’t be given this job. Good for her and good for the Bills and good for the NFL moving forward.

Josh: The Buffalo Bills made history by signing Kathryn Smith as the team’s special teams coordinator. Buffalo Bill’s lineman Richie Incognito tweeted  at Smith congratulating her, too. This shows me that the Bills have respected her for quite some time and are excited for her future with the team. I think this is a huge step for the NFL. Also, I think it is the start of something new. I feel more women coaching will become more popular in not just the NFL, but in all sports. It may take some time for everyone to get used to it, but we won’t even notice a difference. I wish Smith the best of luck and hope she proves everyone who is doubting her wrong!


3. Super Bowl Thoughts

Tom: I am looking forward to the Super Bowl, hopefully Ware gets his ring and Peyton can go out on his terms. I am a “defense wins championships” mentality and after the last performance I saw from Denver I would give them the trophy now. Carolina has a good defense, but the Broncos just beat the crap out of the best QB ever. I think Wade’s schemes will be too much for Cam and I think Peyton does just enough to get the win before his arm falls off. Also safe travels Don Crisman as he makes his way to his 50th Super Bowl!

Josh: Sadly, the 50th Anniversary of the Super Bowl is 2 weeks away. I am super excited for this matchup of the Carolina Panthers against the Denver Broncos. This is a weird matchup, too. Cam Newton, the future of the NFL, against Peyton Manning, one of all-time best quarterbacks to play the game. While Carolina is the early favorite, I have more confidence in Denver. Either way, both team’s have great defenses and are the best team in their respective conference. I will give my final breakdown of the game next week with my predictions as well. Best of luck to both of the teams!

2013 NFL Re-Draft

In 2013, the Kansas City Chiefs held the first pick of the NFL Draft. Then, they were considering an offensive tackle, looking at Eric Fisher of Central Michigan and Luke Joeckel of Texas A&M. Both of these players have not lived up to their potential, so the Chiefs will be looking for a different player. Who will they take? Defensive ends Ezekiel Ansah and Sheldon Richardson are notable choices, or will the Chiefs go offense? Here is a look at the first round of the 2013 NFL Re-Draft:

Pick Team Original Pick New Pick
1. Kansas City Chiefs Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
2. Jacksonville Jaguars Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M Le’Veon Bell, RB, Michigan State
3. Miami Dolphins Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
4. Philadelphia Eagles Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
5. Detroit Lions Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU Sheldon Richardson, DE, Missouri
6. Cleveland Browns Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
7. Arizona Cardinals Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina Tyrann Mathieu, CB, LSU
8. St. Louis Rams Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia Jamie Collins, LB, Southern Miss
9. New York Jets Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
10. Tennessee Titans Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
11. San Diego Chargers DJ Fluker, OG, Alabama Kyle Long, OT, Oregon
12. Oakland Raiders DJ Hayden, CB, Houston Keenan Allen, WR, California
13. New York Jets Sheldon Richardson, DE, Missouri Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi State
14. Carolina Panthers Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
15. New Orleans Saints Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky
16. Buffalo Bills EJ Manuel, QB, Florida State Travis Kelce, TE, Cincinnati
17. Pittsburgh Steelers Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
18. San Francisco 49ers Eric Reid, S, LSU Eric Reid, S, LSU
19 New York Giants Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse Travis Frederick, C, Wisconsin
20. Chicago Bears Kyle Long, OT, Oregon Kiko Alonso, LB, Oregon
21. Cincinnati Bengals Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame Jordan Reed, TE, Florida
22. Atlanta Falcons Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
23. Minnesota Vikings Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia
24. Indianapolis Colts Björn Werner, DE, Florida State Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
25. Minnesota Vikings Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
26. Green Bay Packers Dante Jones, DE, UCLA Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
27. Houston Texans DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson Terron Armstead, OT, Arkansas-Pine Bluff
28. Denver Broncos Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina Dante Jones, DE, UCLA
29. Minnesota Vikings Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
30. St. Louis Rams Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
31. Dallas Cowboys Travis Frederick, C, Wisconsin Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama
32. Baltimore Ravens Matt Elam, S, Florida DJ Fluker, OG, Alabama

Breakdown of the Top 10:


  1. Kansas City Chiefs

Original: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

New: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson


Discussion: DeAndre Hopkins had a breakout season in 2015, proving himself as one of the best WRs in the NFL. The Chiefs would have a solid receiver for Alex Smith to throw the ball to.


  1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Original: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

New: Le’Veon Bell, RB, Michigan State


Discussion: Le’Veon Bell has quickly established himself as a threat in both the running and passing game. The Jaguars have been trying to find a go-to back since Maurice Jones-Drew, and Bell would be the perfect player.


  1. Miami Dolphins

Original: Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon

New: Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU


Discussion: While Dion Jordan has been a major letdown, Ezekiel Ansah has been anything but that. With Ansah having 14.5 sacks in 2015 (3rd in the NFL), the Dolphins make this an easy choice.


  1. Philadelphia Eagles

Original: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma

New: Kawann Short, DT, Purdue


Discussion: Lane Johnson has been good so far of his career, but Kawann Short has been playing out of the world at defensive tackle. Short is the head of Carolina’s defensive line and would make a huge impact for the Eagles.


  1. Detroit Lions

Original: Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU

New: Sheldon Richardson, DE, Missouri


Discussion: With Ansah off the board, the Lions turn to another defensive end in Sheldon Richardson. While he may be the most talented player in this class, off the field issues cause him to fall to number five.


  1. Cleveland Browns

Original: Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU

New: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame


Discussion: Barkevious Mingo has been ineffective, so the Browns choose to pass on him. Instead, Tyler Eifert is heading to Cleveland. Eifert improved tremendously in 2015 and is among the elite tight ends in the NFL.


  1. Arizona Cardinals

Original: Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina

New: Tyrann Mathieu, CB, LSU


Discussion: Although Tyrann Mathieu is a member of the Cardinals, there is no chance of him being available in the third round. Mathieu had Top-10 talent coming out of college, but drug charges off the field drew red flags for most teams. Mathieu has learned from his mistakes and was an All-Pro player in 2015.


  1. St. Louis Rams

Original: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia

New: Jamie Collins, LB, Southern Miss


Discussion: Tavon Austin was not the threat at receiver that the Rams were hoping for in 2013. Instead of Austin, the Rams pick an underrated Jamie Collins with their pick. Collins has been a great all-around linebacker for the Patriots.

  1. New York Jets

Original: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

New: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington


Discussion: Dee Milliner was supposed to be a lockdown corner to pair with All-Pro Darrelle Revis. While he hasn’t lived up to these expectations, the Jets instead pick Desmond Trufant. Having a great career with the Falcons, the Jets get a guy that would help their defense compete in the AFC East.


  1. Tennessee Titans

Original: Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

New: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma


Discussion: With all the talent in the Top-10, Lane Johnson falls all the way down to number 10 in the first round. The Titans line has been inconsistent for years, but Johnson would help improve their pass protection.

Conference Championship Round Preview/Predictions

Conference Championship Round Preview/Predictions

After an unforgettable Divisional Round, NFL fans cannot wait for the Championship games. The Patriots knocked off the red-hot Chiefs while the Broncos handled a beat-up Steelers team. The Panthers built a strong lead on the Seahawks and held on, while the Cards barely defeated the Packers after a tremendous Aaron Rodgers’ comeback. New England gets a rematch against Denver in what may be the final Brady vs Manning matchup. Which teams will advance to Super Bowl 50?

New England Patriots (12-4) at Denver Broncos (12-4)

  • Kickoff: Sunday at 2:05 PM CST
  • Location: Sports Authority Field at Mile High (Denver, CO)
  • Odds: NE -3
  • Over/Under: 44.5

Case for New England:

Just like every other year, New England is again competing for a spot in the Super Bowl. Just like every other year, Tom Brady is leading this team. The Patriots started this season 10-0 before injuries of key players costed them a loss (of course, to the Broncos). Following that loss, the Patriots won 2 of their final 3 to finish 12-4 and a second place finish in the AFC. Last week, with many players coming back from injuries, the Patriots handled the Chiefs fairly well in 27-20 win. Going into this week, New England looks like an early favorite for this game. New England has been outstanding on offense, averaging 29.1 points per game, good for 3rd in the NFL and 1st in the AFC. Defensively, this team finished in 10th for yards allowed, but New England is always known for playing it’s best on the defensive side of the ball in the playoffs. This looks like good news after watching the Bronco’s offense struggle against a weak Steeler’s defense. If the Patriots play their best game, they should be competing in Super Bowl 50.

Case for Denver: 

After claiming the #1 seed for the playoffs in week 17, Denver gets to host New England for a chance at another Super Bowl. Going into the playoffs, the Broncos didn’t know who their starting QB would be until Manning was called up to lead this team. This team is feeling very confident against a New England team they defeated earlier in the year, a 30-24 overtime win. Offensively, this team has been inconsistent. Some weeks, they are able to score a lot of points, but others, they fail to score a touchdown. While Manning has had trouble scoring, he does have something on this team that he has never had before in his career: An offensive rushing attack. CJ Anderson and Ronnie Hillman will be able to take some weight off Manning’s shoulders. Defensively, it is hard to argue that the Broncos do not have one of the league’s best. With Demarcus Ware and Von Miller rushing the quarterback, Chris Harris Jr and Aqib Talib locking down receivers, it will be a challenge for any quarterback. Brady has been known to struggle against good defenses. Denver’s defense ranks 4th in points and 1st in total yards (1st against the pass and 3rd against the rush). If the Broncos are able to stop New England when the run the ball, they will able to force Brady into making tough throws when they expect it. This may lead to turnovers, giving Manning and the offense extra chances to put points on the board.

Prediction: Denver 23, New England 20

Confidence: Very, very low

Difference of Game: Denver’s defense being able to stop Brady and give Manning chances on offense.



Arizona Cardinals (13-3) at Carolina Panthers (15-1)

  • Kickoff: Sunday at 5:40 PM CST
  • Location: Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, NC)
  • Odds: CAR -3
  • Over/Under: 48.0

Case for Arizona:

After a crazy game that finished in Arizona’s favor last week, the Cardinals are looking for another Super Bowl appearance. Carson Palmer is having an MVP-type season and he proved that last week leading his team down in overtime. Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald continues to dominate after having 176 yards and the game-winning touchdown in overtime last week. David Johnson has also been great this year as this team’s running back. This team also finished 1st in total yards and points per game. Defensively, this team has been tremendous. Cornerback Patrick Peterson leads this squad that finished 5th in yards allowed. Even though defensive back Tyrann Matheiu is out for the remainder of the season, the Cardinals still have great players that cause havoc for most quarterbacks in the NFL. Even though Aaron Rodgers brought his team back in the final seconds of last week’s game, this team still maintained him for a majority of the game.

Case for Carolina:

After leading the game 31-0 at halftime last week, the Panthers were able to stop a Russell Wilson comeback and seal the 31-24 win. The Panthers offense scores more than every team but one in the first half of games this season. Cam Newton, with the lack of weapons he has, has dominated all season long. It’s hard to argue that he isn’t the front running for MVP. Running back Jonathon Stewart has played his best year, helping the Panthers finish 2nd in league rushing yards. Carolina has been extremely efficient this season, finishing +20 in turnovers this season. Defensively, led by DPOY candidates Luke Kuechly, Kawann Short, and Josh Norman, have played fantastic this season. This defense has a knack for forcing turnovers and turning them into points. While this team looks like the NFL’s best at some points (First half of last week’s game), they have played poorly at other times. If Cam and his team play as good as they are capable of, no team will stop them from reaching their goal.

Prediction: Carolina 27, Arizona 23

Confidence: Low

Difference of Game: Cam Newton and his explosive offense being able to score quick points on the Cardinal’s defense.

2016 NBA Mock Draft 1.0

I thought I would release my first edition of my 2016 NBA mock draft. This far through the college basketball season, Ben Simmons of LSU appears to be a lock for the first pick. Will that change in the next couple months? After Simmons, who is next in line to make the transition to the NBA? Brandon Ingram of Duke appears to be that guy. How will the rest of the season affect this draft? So, here’s a look at how the first round is going to play out:

Pick Team Player Position College/Country
1. Philadelphia 76ers Ben Simmons PF LSU
2. Los Angeles Lakers Brandon Ingram SF Duke
3. Boston Celtics Ivan Rabb PF California
4. Minnesota Timberwolves Dragan Bender PF Croatia
5. Phoenix Suns Jaylen Brown SF California
6. New Orleans Pelicans Kris Dunn PG Providence
7. Denver Nuggets Buddy Hield SG Oklahoma
8. Portland Trail Blazers Jamal Murray SG Kentucky
9. Utah Jazz Wade Baldwin IV PG Vanderbilt
10. Milwaukee Bucks Henry Ellenson PF Marquette
11. Charlotte Hornets Skal Labissiere C Kentucky
12. Sacramento Kings Jakob Poeltl C Utah
13. Orlando Magic Furkan Korkmaz SG Turkey
14. Washington Wizards Deyonta Davis PF Michigan State
15 Toronto Raptors Timothe Luwawu SF France
16. Denver Nuggets Diamond Stone C Maryland
17. Boston Celtics Grayson Allen SG Duke
18. Philadelphia 76ers Denzel Valentine SG Michigan State
19. Detroit Pistons Cheick Diallo PF Kansas
20. Indiana Pacers Caris LeVert SG Michigan
21. Boston Celtics Melo Trimble PG Maryland
22. Memphis Grizzlies Stephen Zimmerman C UNLV
23. Chicago Bulls Malik Newman PG Mississippi State
24. Atlanta Hawks Isaiah Briscoe PG Kentucky
25. Los Angeles Clippers Nigel Hayes SF Wisconsin
26. Toronto Raptors Taurean Prince SF Baylor
27. Philadelphia 76ers Allonzo Trier SG Arizona
28. Cleveland Cavaliers Domantas Sabonis PF Gonzaga
29. San Antonio Spurs Ivica Zubac C Croatia
30. Golden State Warriors Gary Payton II SG Oregon State


Tom’s Championship Weekend Picks

Arizona at Panthers

I think this game comes down to how effective Arizona can keep Cam guessing. They are one of the better teams in switching up their looks and not showing blitz until the last second. If Cam can recognize this he will have a hay day with either running for the first or finding the open guy. This is the game that not having Tryann could really hurt the Cardinals. Another key is Arizona’s run game. It didn’t have much juice against the Packers and the Packers aren’t known for their rush defense. If Zona can get DJ going this game should take shape on the Cardinals side.

Arizona 24 Panthers 21 OT

Patriots at Broncos

The big Brady v Manning. Wouldn’t it be a lot more fun if it was Osweiler v Garoppolo. The Patriots are pretty beat up right now and I was thinking, does the mile high city increase some injury concerns, hmmmm. Manning seemed like he couldn’t really get a touch on the ball, but they won. I wonder if the Broncos two qb this game. That would be a hell of an idea. Let Osweiler start and get going. If it gets to high pressure situations toss in Manning, give him a mic and let him talk to Brock all game. It probably wont happen but still I can dream. I am thinking it comes down to time of possession honestly. Whoever can keep the chains moving wins this so I am flipping a coin for my pick and yes I will actually flip it. Heads=Mr Forehead Tails=I can’t think of something funny so Pats are tails.

Broncos 17 Patriots 16

2012 NFL Re-Draft

Going back to the 2012 NFL Draft, it was Andrew Luck vs Robert Griffin III for the first overall pick held by the Indianapolis Colts. Since then, things have changed. Today, Russell Wilson has been the most successful quarterback of this draft, but would the Colts pass on luck for him? Also, the Panthers and Seahawks picked their star middle linebackers for their team’s today from this draft. Luke Kuechly and Bobby Wagner have been tremendous since their NFL careers began. Where would these players have been picked today? The Miami Dolphins picked their quarterback with the 8th pick in Ryan Tannehill. Would they have redone that pick, or maybe a different quarterback? Let’s find out in the 2012 NFL Re-Draft!

Pick Team Original Pick New Pick
1. Indianapolis Colts Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford Russell Wilson, QB, Wisconsin
2. Washington Redskins Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
3. Cleveland Browns Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
4. Minnesota Vikings Matt Kalil, OT, USC Bobby Wagner, LB, Utah State
5. Jacksonville Jaguars Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina
6. Dallas Cowboys Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU Josh Norman, CB, Coastal Carolina
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mark Barron, SS, Alabama Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame
8. Miami Dolphins Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M Kirk Cousins, QB, Michigan State
9. Carolina Panthers *Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College Dont’a Hightower, LB, Alabama
10. Buffalo Bills Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
11. Kansas City Chiefs *Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
12. Philadelphia Eagles *Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State
13. Arizona Cardinals Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame TY Hilton, WR, Florida International
14. St. Louis Rams Michael Brockers, DT, LSU Chandler Jones, DE, Syracuse
15. Seattle Seahawks Bruce Irvin, LB, West Virginia Bruce Irvin, LB, West Virginia
16. New York Jets Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina Mike Daniels, DE, Iowa
17. Cincinnati Bengals Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama
18. San Diego Chargers Melvin Ingram, LB, South Carolina Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin
19 Chicago Bears Shea McClellin, DE, Boise State Tashaun Gipson, S, Wyoming
20. Tennessee Titans Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
21. New England Patriots *Chandler Jones, DE, Syracuse Matt Kalil, OT, USC
22. Cleveland Browns Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
23. Detroit Lions Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa Casey Hayward, CB, Vanderbilt
24. Pittsburgh Steelers *David DeCastro, OG, Stanford Melvin Ingram, LB, South Carolina
25. New England Patriots *Dont’a Hightower, LB, Alabama Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor
26. Houston Texans Whitney Mercilus, LB, Illinois Whitney Mercilus, LB, Illinois
27. Cincinnati Bengals *Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
28. Green Bay Packers Nick Perry, LB, USC Doug Martin, RB, Boise State
29. Minnesota Vikings *Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
30. San Francisco 49ers AJ Jenkins, WR, Illinois Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
31. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Doug Martin, RB, Boise State Ladarius Green, TE, Louisiana-Lafayette
32. New York Giants David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech Nick Perry, LB, USC


Breakdown of the Top 10:


  1. Indianapolis Colts

Original: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

New: Russell Wilson, QB, Wisconsin


Discussion: Luck appeared to be the obvious choice here coming out of school, but Russell Wilson has been undoubtedly better. With a Super Bowl ring under his belt and coming off his best season yet, Russell Wilson would be the first pick of this draft and the Colts wouldn’t look back.


  1. Washington Redskins

Original: Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

New: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford


Discussion: Robert Griffin III hasn’t had the best career, with several people blaming the Washington Redskins. RG3 has been haunted by injuries and hasn’t translated well following his Heisman Trophy season at Baylor. The Redskins would take Luck here and be confident heading into the season.


  1. Cleveland Browns

Original: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

New: Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College


Discussion: With Trent Richardson not being in the league anymore, the Browns take the NFL’s best linebacker Luke Kuechly of Boston College. Kuechly has dominated since his rookie season and would dramatically help the Browns defense.


  1. Minnesota Vikings

Original: Matt Kalil, OT, USC

New: Bobby Wagner, LB, Utah State


Discussion: Next to Kuechly, Bobby Wagner has been one of the best linebackers in the NFL. He has started for a stellar defense of Seattle since his rookie year and would help the Vikings right away.


  1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Original: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

New: Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina


Discussion: Justin Blackman has had trouble staying on the field, so no doubt the Jaguars pass him. Instead, the snag Alshon Jeffery, one of the best young receivers. Jeffery would be an immediate threat for a weak Jaguars receiving corp.


  1. Dallas Cowboys

Original: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

New: Josh Norman, CB, Coastal Carolina


Discussion: Morris Claiborne has struggled, so Dallas would take Josh Norman. Norman had a breakout season in 2015 and is among the elite cornerbacks in the NFL.


  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Original: Mark Barron, S, Alabama

New: Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame


Discussion: Mark Barron has been a major letdown for the Bucs. For their pick, they grab Harris Smith out of Notre Dame. Smith has proven to be a dominant safety that would start for almost every team in the NFL.


  1. Miami Dolphins

Original: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

New: Kirk Cousins, QB, Michigan State


Discussion: While Tannehill has been average, the Dolphins elect to take Kirk Cousins. Cousins led the Redskins to the playoffs in 2015 and was one of the most accurate throwers of the season.


  1. Carolina Panthers

Original: Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College

New: Dont’a Hightower, LB, Alabama


Discussion: With Kuechly off the board, the Panthers take Dont’a Hightower. While he would have been a early first round pick of this draft if it weren’t for injuries in college, Hightower has had a great career for the Patriots.


  1. Buffalo Bills

Original: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

New: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
Discussion: The Bills need an upgrade at cornerback, but David DeCastro is on the board. DeCastro is one of the NFL’s best interior linemen that would help the Lions out fiercely.

NFL Coaching Carousel

Here are my head coach hiring grades. A year after going with all defensive coaches the NFL decides to go all offensive coaches. Only one team who made a head coaching change made the playoffs and that was the Broncos.

49ers Hire Chip Kelly Incomplete

There is not enough information on Chip Kelly to properly grade this move. He had one stint after a successful college run. If he continues to coach and try to run a team like he did with the Eagles then the grade is a big fat F. If he changes his ways and realizes some players are worth more than three dollars then I could see the grade being a C+. He does have a lot of work to do with the ‘9ers so he isn’t in the best situation. Only time will tell.

Browns Hire Hue Jackson B+

The reason this grade isn’t higher is because it is the Browns. They go through head coaches like quarterbacks. I believed that their current head coach should have been retained but what do I know. Hue Jackson has coached all over and after his one year stint in Oakland went to the Bengals where he stayed for four years. I think he has enough knowledge and experience to get the Browns to be a respectable team in two years, if he is retained that long.

Dolphins Hire Adam Gase C-

Lions QB coach 2007, Denver QB coach 2011-12, Denver OC 2013-14, Chicago OC 2015. So he coached an aging Jon Kitna, Tim Tebow, The guy that knew everything already, and he caught Jay Cutler on a good year. I do not really see the hype behind him. He has to create a new environment at a place where the only requirement is an ego bigger than T.O. and where recently they gave up on the field. He has his work cut out for him. The lone bright spot is that his offense is pass heavy so Tannenhil might break out.

Titans Hire Mike Mularkey F

Why? Granted they are not the most talented team but they had a rookie QB that did fairly well. He has a 18-39 record. I have no idea what the Titans are thinking. I get the idea of continuity but still he’s terrible. Almost all the other hirings and candidates would be better than him, maybe even Rob Ryan?!?!

Giants Hire Ben McAdoo C

There isn’t much on this guy really. He called the plays the last two years for the Giants. So there shouldn’t be much change offensively. The offense hasn’t really been a problem with the Giants its been the padded dummies they toss out on defense, especially at linebacker. The grade fits. Its average

Eagles Hire Doug Pederson C

He has familiarity with Eagles both as a player and coach. His offensive play calling with the Chiefs has me interested. Alex Smith is either underrated or the play calling has just been perfect. I’m leaning toward Smith underrated. Philly is a train wreck after Chip. Doug has a bunch of work to do, starting with reteaching the players that head coaches are good and should be listened to.

Weekly Round-Up – Jan 17th, 2016

1. Divisional Round. What a round of football! All the games were way close and had plenty of drama. We had the Patriots over the Chiefs, Broncos over the Steelers, Panthers over the Seahawks, and the Cardinals over the Packers. Here are our thoughts on the outcomes:

Tom: When was the last time we had both 1-2 seeds in both championship games? 2004? So far this playoff I am 5-3. Not too bad considering I never guessed only 1 and 2’s would remain. I am excited for the championship matchups. All of the teams have some injury questions along with can their QB get it done question. Peyton and Tom and old and have their whole rivalry. Cam is young and hasn’t been here before. Carson is old and hasn’t been here before. It should be a good weekend of football coming to us. Look for my picks later in the week. 

Josh: Just like the Wild Card weekend, the Divisional round only got better. We kicked off with Brady handling the Chiefs at home and cruising to yet another AFC Championship game appearance. Saturday night, the Cardinals and Packers played in one of the greatest games I have ever witnessed. Aaron Rodgers led his team, with a receiving corp that even I could start on, down the field against one of the NFL’s best defenses in their house. Rodgers proved he is easily one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL right now and one of the most skilled of all time. It was unfortunate that he didn’t get a chance to win the game in OT, but the Cardinals moved on. On Sunday, the Panthers played amazing in the first half, but horrendous in the second half. For Seattle, vise versa. Either way, the Panthers advanced. The Broncos took on the beat-up Steelers and finally scored a touchdown in the fourth quarter and won the game. Looking ahead, the Patriots look like the early favorites in the AFC, while the Cardinals and Panthers are even. Either way, I picked all four games correctly and I cannot wait for the Conference Championships!


2. Vontaze Burfict


Tom: There is no place for people like this in the NFL. He deserves every second of this suspension and more. If you are deliberately trying to hurt people then get out, just leave and do not ever come back. My thoughts are the same of OBJ. Yes there are big hits that is part of the game, but when you target players and attempt to injure them you aren’t only hurting them for this game but the next you could put their lively hood at stake. The Bengals should release him and every NFL team should watch him go by their team on the waiver.

Josh: Unlikely for Burfict, he will be out the first three games of next season. While watching the game, I really didn’t think it would be a penalty. After watching the replay, it CLEARLY wasn’t a penalty. Burfict didn’t even touch him with his head! The league is very strict on helmet to helmet hits, and Burfict didn’t use his head. I understand the need for player safety, so maybe the rule should be changed to not hits to the head with any part of the body. The rule should be changed and Burfict shouldn’t be punished.

3. Carson Wentz Rising Up Draft Boards

Tom: I have seen multiple placed that Carson is a top 3 qb even the top qb prospect. With this league being a qb-starved as it is, I will not be surprised if Wentz, Lynch, and Goff are gone by ten. I could even see another name squeaking in. Carson was under-recruited because of where he played and he was under-the-radar for NDSU because of where he played again. He is a big athletic quarterback. He can make the throws and has great awareness. I am leaning as him being my top qb for this draft as of right now.

Josh: In the league today, Joe Flacco, Tony Romo, and Ryan Fitzpatrick are notable players that played in the FCS.  Of these players combined, they have one Super Bowl win. I was initially shocked when I saw Wentz as an early second round selection. Today, I am still questioning it. As a FCS quarterback, he dominated. How well does that translate to the NFL? He has good size with a strong arm. Still, is he better than Paxton Lynch or Connor Cook? On my board, he is the #4 QB. It would be very risky to take Wentz anywhere near the top 10 and I don’t see it happening or working out.

2011 NFL Re-Draft

As of the 2015 season, the 2011 NFL features some of the best players in the league. JJ Watt, a 2x Defensive Player of the Year winner, has established himself as one of the NFL’s greats during his career. Cam Newton, the former first overall pick of this draft, has led the Panthers to  15-1 season and is a strong candidate for the NFL MVP. Julio Jones and AJ Green have been dominated throughout their careers since their rookie season. Outside linebackers Von Miller and Justin Houston have been some of the best edge rushers. Cornerback Patrick Peterson was a top 5 pick, but is currently battling Richard Sherman (5th round pick) and Chris Harris (Undrafted) as the league’s best cornerbacks. With so much talent from the actual top 10 and the rest of the draft, how would these picks be shaken up? Here’s how I see the first round turing out:

Pick  Team Original Pick New Pick
1. Carolina Panthers Cam Newton, QB, Auburn Cam Newton, QB, Auburn
2. Denver Broncos Von Miller, LB, Texas A&M JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin
3. Buffalo Bills Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama Justin Houston, OLB, Georgia
4. Cincinnati Bengals AJ Green, WR, Georgia Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
5. Arizona Cardinals Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU Andy Dalton, QB, TCU
6. Atlanta Falcons Julio Jones, WR, Alabama Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama
7. San Francisco 49ers Aldon Smith, OLB, Missouri Richard Sherman, CB, Stanford
8. Tennessee Titans Jake Locker, QB, Washington Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M
9. Dallas Cowboys Tyron Smith, OT, USC Tyron Smith, OT, USC
10. Jacksonville Jaguars Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri AJ Green, WR, Georgia
11. Houston Texans JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
12. Minnesota Vikings Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State Tyrod Taylor, QB Virginia Tech
13. Detroit Lions Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn Robert Quinn, DE, UNC
14. St. Louis Rams Robert Quinn, DE, UNC Randall Cobb, WR, Kentucky
15. Miami Dolphins Mike Pouncey, C, Florida DeMarco Murray, RB, Oklahoma
16. Washington Redskins Ryan Kerrigan, OLB, Purdue Muhammad Wilkerson, DT, Temple
17. New England Patriots Nate Solder, OT, Colorado Nate Solder, OT, Colorado
18. San Diego Chargers Corey Liuget, DE, Illinois Ryan Kerrigan, OLB, Purdue
19 New York Giants Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska Chris Harris, CB, Kansas
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa Aldon Smith, OLB, Missouri
21. Cleveland Browns Phillip Taylor, DT, Baylor Doug Baldwin, WR, Stanford
22. Indianapolis Colts Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College Anthony Castonzo, T, Boston College
23. Philadelphia Eagles Danny Watkins, OG, Baylor KJ Wright, OLB, Mississippi State
24. New Orleans Saints Cameron Jordan, DE, California Cameron Jordan, DE, California
25. Seattle Seahawks James Carpenter, OT, Alabama Kyle Rudolph, TE, Notre Dame
26. Kansas City Chiefs Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh Mike Pouncey, C, Florida
27. Baltimore Ravens Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
28. New Orleans Saints Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn
29. Chicago Bears Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin Jason Kelce, C, Cincinnati
30. New York Jets Muhammad Wilkerson, DT, Temple Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
31. Pittsburgh Steelers Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State Orlando Franklin, OT, Miami
32. Green Bay Packers Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State Julius Thomas, TE, Portland State


Breakdown of the Top 10:

  1. Carolina Panthers

Original: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn

New: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn


Discussion: While many would argue JJ Watt here, you need a QB to win in the NFL. Cam has led the 15-1 Panthers to their best season ever, so Carolina makes this an easy choice.


  1. Denver Broncos

Original: Von Miller, LB, Texas A&M

New: JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin


Discussion: JJ Watt is the best defensive player in the NFL, and it might not be close. Von Miller has had a good career so far, but Watt is just too good to even consider someone else.


  1. Buffalo Bills

Original: Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama

New: Justin Houston, OLB, Georgia


Discussion: While Dareus has had a great career for the Bills, Houston has had 56 career sacks in just 5 seasons. Houston would have been a perfect edge rusher to help put pressure on Brady in recent years.


  1. Cincinnati Bengals

Original: AJ Green, WR, Georgia

New: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama


Discussion: AJ Green vs Julio Jones. Both receivers have had stellar careers, but Jones will get the nod here. Jones led the league in receptions this past season and has dominated defenders throughout his career.


  1. Arizona Cardinals

Original: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU

New: Andy Dalton, QB, TCU


Discussion: Patrick Peterson is arguably the best CB in the NFL, but like the Panthers, a good quarterback is what wins football games. Dalton has been great since his rookie season, so this pick only makes sense. (Remember, Carson Palmer was an Oakland Raider during this draft.)


  1. Atlanta Falcons

Original: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama

New: Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama


Discussion: With Jones off the board, the Falcons would solidify their interior defensive line by snagging Dareus. He has been one of the best DTs in the league that would only help the Falcon defense.


  1. San Francisco 49ers

Original: Aldon Smith, OLB, MIssouri

New: Richard Sherman, CB, Stanford


Discussion: On the field, Aldon Smith is an amazing player. Off the field, he has issues. The 49ers would be able to avoid these problems by picking CB Richard Sherman. Sherman has been lockdown throughout his career and is one of the best defensive players in the NFL.


  1. Tennessee Titans

Original: Jake Locker, QB, Washington

New: Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M


Discussion: No doubt the Titans would pass on Jake Locker if this draft reocurred. By doing that, the Titans would pick up stud OLB Von Miller. Miller has gone over 10 sacks a season four times in his five year career.


  1. Dallas Cowboys

Original: Tyron Smith, OT, USC

New: Tyron Smith, OT, USC


Discussion: The Dallas Cowboys absolutely would not change their pick on Tyron Smith out of USC. He has been one of the best tackles in the league and is the head of the NFL’s best offensive line.


  1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Original: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

New: AJ Green, WR, Georgia


Discussion: Just as Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert has not had a good career in the NFL. Instead, the Jaguars pick WR AJ Green. Having 45 career touchdowns, Green is too good to let go.