NFL News, Rumors and Musings

Discussion in 'NFL' started by Leonardfan, Nov 21, 2016.

  1. NEP01

    NEP01 Newbie

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    Rivera's playoff seasons in '13, '15, and '17, along with Newton's injuries, have given Rivera the right combination of success and excuses to have longevity without winning a championship. Jeff Fisher in Tennessee had a similar career, though being undiverse he needed to be an ultra media whore to pull it off.
     
  2. Red raider

    Red raider Mentor

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    Apparently Sutton Smith has got some reps at RB and FB during OTA’s, the more he can do helps his chances at a long career.

    The Lions have signed former pro lacrosse player Tom Kennedy after a tryout. He’s a slot receiver who played 4 years of college lacrosse and 2 years of college football and also got drafted to the Boston Cannons pro lacrosse team last year. Interesting story, maybe he can be a practice squad slot receiver or future return man.
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.freep.com/amp/1191743001
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
  3. Flint

    Flint Mentor Staff Member

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    The Lions had a "white guy" slot open due to Zach Zenner missing the OTA for the birth of his son. I don't think you'll hear from this guy again.
     
  4. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    After losing Jordy and Gronk this offseason, it's great to see Jason Witten is making a comeback:

    Dallas Cowboys TE Jason Witten 'hasn't lost a step' after taking a year off, according to QB Dak Prescott. 'I guess the trick is to take a year off because he's definitely gotten better, stronger and faster,' Prescott said. Source: Fort Worth Star-Telegram - Clarence E. Hill Jr.
     
  5. white lightning

    white lightning Hall of Famer Staff Member

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    Here is a short video interview with Sutton Smith of the Pittsburgh Steelers talking about trying out the fullback and running back positions. Apparently he used to be a running back back in
    high school. Linebacker, Running Back, Fullback, what can't this kid do? He is one athletic dude! He just looks like a football player. I have to give the Steelers credit as they have been giving
    alot of white guys a look the last few years. I'm shocked but happy. Hope this trend continues. I know Don must be excited since he lives in Pennsylvania. Let's go Steelers. Go Sutton Smith!

    https://www.steelers.com/video/smith-i-ll-do-whatever-they-need
     
  6. Rocky B

    Rocky B Mentor

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    As long as they’re not giving up on him at outside LB.....
    I’d love to see him used like Vrabel was....
    Sutton is just a bad ass athlete that needs to be a part of that team....
     
  7. Red raider

    Red raider Mentor

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    Yep he was an incredible high school running back, 1st team all-state. He had over 4000 yards and 50 touchdowns his final two seasons. I hope Steelers actually use him as a normal RB, that would be really cool to see.

     
  8. Carolina Speed

    Carolina Speed Master

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    Another one of a long list of white HS RB's moved to LB. How does a guy who reportedly runs a 4.41 at 6'0, 193lbs rush for over 4,000 in two years of HS get moved to LB? Now he weighs 233lbs. and running a 4.69.
    Interestingly, on another note, we've talked about Matthew Boling turning 19 in June on the T&F thread. Smith has a March birthday and turned 19 before graduating HS. As I've mentioned before, it seems a lot of parents are holding kids back these days. I don't think it should be allowed, but I guess some believe it's the only way to get an advantage.
    Although, I did see his GPA was 2.7 and a rank of 277 out of 455. Smith is either not too bright or just didn't try real hard to make good grades in HS.
    Anyway, it stinks that he couldn't have been left at RB!
     
  9. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    I'm hoping Smith replaces first round bust Bud Dupree as the Steelers' starting outside linebacker across from T. J. Watt. Won't happen this year but there's a good chance 2019 will be Dupree's last year in Pittsburgh unless he suddenly realizes his "mouth watering upside" in the final year of his five year rookie deal. Even a lot of Steelers DWFs were disappointed when the team decided to pay the final year of Dupree's contract rather than letting him go. Would be great if next year Smith and Anthony Chickillo -- who shows starting ability when he's on the field and can play outside or inside -- are battling it out for Dupree's vacated spot.
     
  10. Bucky

    Bucky Master

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    Raiders sign Richie "Roid Rage" Incognito.
     
  11. Extra Point

    Extra Point Hall of Famer

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    Last I heard he was retiring for health reasons. He was quoted as saying his liver and kidneys were shutting down...

    Now he signs with the Raiders.
     
  12. FootballDad

    FootballDad Hall of Famer

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    I like Incognito, only because the sporting press hates him. After all, he "bullied" an LGTBQ hero in Miami.
     
  13. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    I have mixed feelings on him returning to the NFL as he showed serious mental issues in his 1 year hiatus from the NFL. I thought he crossed over the edge, but maybe it was the media portraying him as running amok on the streets and his gym and funeral home incidents were exaggerated.

    Also the whole Miami incident was blown out of proportion as football isn't a normal 9 to 5 job, the closest I can equate it to is field combat or being a policeman in a riot situation.
     
  14. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    This is good news for Justin Watson and Scott Miller as this first round mega-bust was getting lots of favorable publicity before this injury.

    Breshad Perriman has been sidelined at Bucs OTAs with a shoulder injury.
    Per The Athletic's Greg Auman, Perriman has been sidelined since getting hurt two weeks ago. The good news is he doesn't have a sling or anything like that and has been in attendance. It sounds like Perriman should be fine for training camp, but he's still missing valuable reps as he competes for the No. 3 job.
     
  15. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Carl Nassib is being moved to outside linebacker after shining at end for the Bucs last season after being acquired after the Browns gave him very little opportunity to develop despite drafting him in the third round. Tampa also drafted Anthony Nelson in the fourth round this year and he may play on the line or also be moved outside. Some excerpts from an article on Tampa's OLBs:

    2019 Roster Reset: Outside Linebackers

    [​IMG]


    Pierre-Paul and Nassib were responsible for 19 of the team's 38 sacks last year, but obviously the former could miss time in 2019. That would be a big loss, as Pierre-Paul was the first Buccaneer to hit double digits in sacks in a season since the days of Simeon Rice. Nassib, meanwhile, was a revelation after getting picked off the waiver wires following his post-camp release by the Cleveland Browns.

    Nassib's 6.5 sacks for the Bucs last year was one more than he'd had in his first two seasons in Cleveland combined. Kacy Rodgers is the Buccaneers' defensive line coach and thus isn't working with Nassib or the other OLBs throughout practice, but their drills do intersect and Rodgers also studied tape on the all the front-line defenders. He thinks a move towards the perimeter is what unlocked Nassib's pass-rushing potential. Now the Bucs will see what he can do as a stand-up rusher, at least on some snaps.

    "When he came out of college he was a 3-4 4-technique end," said Rodgers. "Now you move him out to 6-technique in a 4-3 and it's like a whole different animal. It's a lot easier to move guys out than it is to move him in, so when you take a guy that's in and you move him out, good things usually happen."

    https://www.buccaneers.com/news/ros...b-pierre-paul-spence-barrett-kahzin-huguenin-
     
  16. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Stay healthy this year Dylan!

    Los Angeles Chargers: What should we expect from Dylan Cantrell in 2019?

    by Travis Wakeman

    If the Los Angeles Chargers failed to improve any one position after losing a player this offseason, it might be wide receiver. Or so, that’s what we all might believe.

    Tyrell Williams took the money and ran to Oakland with it and the Chargers didn’t sign a receiver through free agency or take one in the draft. Is that because Tom Telesco just couldn’t get the guy he wanted or is it because he was happy with what was already in place?

    Most assume that the veteran Travis Benjamin will assume the role once held by Williams but there are other wide receivers on the roster who should figure into the mix. One of those guys is second-year pro, Dylan Cantrell.

    It was thought that the Chargers may have gotten a late-round steal in Cantrell last season and he started out training camp looking like he might make those thoughts come to fruition. But because he ended up missing most of camp with an injury, the team was forced to release him and sign him to the practice squad.

    He was promoted to the active roster late in the season but never caught a pass during his rookie year. He should come back hungry this summer ready to make amends for a lost year.

    At 6-foot-3 and 226 pounds, Cantrell has the size to be the kind of slot target that the team just hasn’t had. With a quarterback like Philip Rivers who loves to take what the defense gives him, Cantrell could become one of his favorite targets.

    That’s not to say that Cantrell is the next Wes Welker, but he did go to the same school. He caught 158 passes during his career at Texas Tech, including 71 during his senior season. He also scored 18 career touchdowns.

    Benjamin is a speedster, but he’s wildly inconsistent and not the type of game-changer he once was with the Cleveland Browns. He’ll be the favorite to be the team’s No. 3 receiver, but that’s only because of experience.

    A healthy Cantrell is the type of player fans and teams around the league should not sleep on and it’s entirely possible that he could end up snagging that No. 3 job before the regular season kicks off.

    https://boltbeat.com/2019/05/29/los-angeles-chargers-expeft-dylan-cantrell-2019/
     
  17. Extra Point

    Extra Point Hall of Famer

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    So the 6-3 226 lb Cantrell is projected to be a slot receiver by this journalist. They usually don't project white men as outside receivers no matter what their profiles.
     
  18. Bucky

    Bucky Master

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    Ya it's nice White Men are allowed to play at least some WR now, even though it has to be slot. But the racial slotting is still beyond ridiculous. At the end of the day I'll be happy to see Cantrell on the field. As Don stated, he just needs to stay healthy!
     
  19. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    The Chargers' best receiver, Keenan Allen, is a slot receiver (who ran a 4.71 40 btw), while Cantrell is battling Travis Benjamin who is a one-trick pony small outside speedster, so if Cantrell beats out Benjamin he should play a lot outside, at least in theory. But yes, the taboo against playing White receivers outside has once again become very strong so we'll have to see how it shakes out. Given that this is the NFL and Cantrell is essentially a rookie after being injured all of last year, he's not likely to play much this season even in a best case scenario, but hey it's spring time and the flowers are blooming and anything is possible. . .
     
  20. Shadowlight

    Shadowlight Master

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    Ha. There is an old black and white baseball move called "It Happens Every Spring" and every spring there is talk of young white skill players making a mark in the NFL only for them to disappear like rabbits come fall when the 53 man roster is announced.

    But still I cling to hope. Without it things would be intolerable. Just enough hope out there to prevent me from giving up.

    San Diego hasn't had a white receiver of note since when? Tim Dwight?
     
  21. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Alex Anzalone stayed healthy last year after numerous injury problems at Florida and in his rookie year with the Saints, and got better and better as the season went on. He looks to be a breakout star this season, though he is still way under the radar as far as recognition.

    New Orleans Saints: Four breakout candidates for the 2019 season

    LB Alex Anzalone
    Some might see this name and say Alex Anzalone broke out last year. To an extent, you would be correct. During his 2018 campaign, Anzalone burst onto the scene. He racked up 44 solo tackles, two sacks, three forced fumbles, an interception, and two touchdowns. He also did all of this while in a timeshare with seven-year veteran A.J. Klein. Klein out-snapped Anzalone 734 to 543 throughout the regular and postseason, a difference of just under 200.

    Anzalone is proving to be the Saints succession plan after Klein’s contract expires at the end of this season. Thriving in pass coverage, Anzalone covered and ran with tight ends all season, while also adding pressure to the quarterback. In his third season, look for him to work on reading keys. It is also crucial for Anzalone to improve his understanding of running plays to have an impact on earlier downs.

    New Orleans should up Anzalone’s snap count after his performance this past season. It also would not be surprising to see him become the starting middle linebacker at some point in the season. If he continues his hard work, the stat line this season could be astronomical.

    DE Trey Hendrickson
    Had I not already written about him, this section would be about defensive end Marcus Davenport, but you can find that article here.

    At this point, the starting defensive ends are in place. Barring a massive regression or injury, Cameron Jordan and Davenport should be the first options on the end of the defensive line. Past that, however, it is open season for the rotation spots between Mario Edwards, Carl Granderson, Corbin Kaufusi, and the only other DE that saw snaps last season, Trey “T-Rex” Hendrickson.

    The departure of Alex Okafor gives Hendrickson the perfect opportunity to garner more play time this upcoming season. He shows the ability on passing downs as an all-out speed rusher. With few names on the depth chart, there is a spot in the rotation for T-Rex.

    Last season, Hendrickson was on the field for just 78 snaps. However, in that small sample, he was able to pressure the QB ten times with three hits and seven hurries. That means he was pressuring the quarterback on 12.8% of the snaps he played. Now, while Davenport had three times the snaps of Hendrickson, he pressured the QB on 10.6% of his snaps.

    While Hendrickson has struggled with defending the run, the Saints have some players who are monsters in that respect. On the other hand, the pass rush, outside of Cameron Jordan, has struggled a fair bit. Last season, Hendrickson graded as the second highest ranked pass rusher for the Saints.

    Outside of Jordan and Davenport, the Saints are rebuilding the defensive line rotation. With that in mind, it is T-Rex’s time to start seeing the field more and increasing his snap count. He can show the force he can be in the pass rush. Hendrickson is a worthwhile investment for the Saints because of what he offers, he is going to chase and take down the QB, and that is where the New Orleans Saints need the help.

    https://www.profootballnetwork.com/new-orleans-saints-four-breakout-candidates-for-the-2019-season/
     
  22. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    I'm encouraged by all the positive articles about Hunter Renfrow. Much like Cooper Kupp in 2017, Renfrow is the rare White receiver who may get to play quite a bit as a rookie, bypassing the traditional lengthy racial apprenticeship route. Saw this article today and it's typical of a number I've seen since he was drafted:

    Oakland Raiders: Hunter Renfrow a perfect fit in wide receiver corps

    by Cody Williams

    The Oakland Raiders used a fifth-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft on Hunter Renfrow and the former Clemson receiver is a fantastic fit in this offense.

    Much of what the Oakland Raiders did in the 2019 NFL Draft has been under heavy scrutiny. This is especially the case in regards to their three first-round selections, most pointedly taking Clelin Ferrell with the fourth overall pick. However, in the late rounds, new general manager Mike Mayock and head coach Jon Gruden did some great work, which is especially true in regards to Ferrell’s Clemson teammate, wide receiver Hunter Renfrow.

    The Raiders selected Renfrow in the fifth round, the 149th overall pick, after a productive four-year career with the Tigers. In his four collegiate seasons, Renfrow notched 186 catches, 2,133 yards and 15 touchdowns. No, he wasn’t tearing up box scores, but he was a valuable cog in the offense, something that will continue with the Raiders.

    When you look at Renfrow, he’s not a wholly impressive physical specimen. The wideout measured in at just 5-10, 184 pounds with sub-eight-inch hands. On top of that, he registered just a pedestrian 4.59-second 40-yard dash time. When you go to the film, though, you see where Renfrow shines.

    Working out of the slot and in the middle of the field, Renfrow is a technician with his footwork and route-running, consistently finding space and holes in the defense to create throwing lanes. And while his hand size might be extremely subpar by NFL standards, there is no receiver in the 2019 rookie class with more consistent hands than the new Raider.

    This offseason, it was clear that the Raiders wanted to improve the offense around Derek Carr. Chief among those improvements were the trade that netted them Antonio Brown and the signing of Tyrell Williams. The outside combo of Brown and Williams should dramatically improve Carr’s chances for success, but the wide receiver corps as a whole didn’t have anyone — outside of Brown and his versatility — well-versed at working out of the slot.

    With Renfrow added to the equation, though, that changes. Not only does he alone give the Oakland offense a player capable of demanding attention in the middle of the field and getting his own work, but the threat that he provides when he’s on the field subsequently opens things up for Brown and Williams on the outside.

    Of course, much of the Raiders’ potential offensive success in 2019 hinges on the play of Carr, which has been a rollercoaster ride over the past few seasons. While that may be the case, Mayock and Gruden have clearly made a concerted effort to give the quarterback all of the tools that he needs to succeed.

    Without question, Renfrow is a part of that equation. And whether or not Carr is the long-term answer, the Clemson product’s fit between Brown and Williams sets the Oakland receiving corps up for long-term success.

    https://nflspinzone.com/2019/05/27/oakland-raiders-otas-biggest-takeaways-week-1/
     
  23. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Vance McDonald is a bull of a tight end. Hopefully he stays healthy this season and tears it up with Jesse James gone.

    Analysis: Vance McDonald poised for Pro Bowl leap

    by Dale Lolley

    Which Steelers player who has not made a Pro Bowl has the best chance to do so in 2019? . . .

    [T]he pick here comes from the offensive side of the ball: Vance McDonald.

    And there are a number of reasons why, not the least of which is McDonald being a very talented player. Studies also show tight ends typically peak later than many other positions in terms of their level of play, usually having their best years between the ages of 28 and 32.

    "Really? I didn't know that," McDonald said last week. "I'll have to check into that."

    The reason McDonald was interested to learn that bit of information was because he's right in the middle of that age range. He'll turn 29 on June 13.

    Therefore, it was no accident McDonald had his best NFL season -- by far -- in 2018, catching 50 passes for 610 yards and four touchdowns, all of which were career highs.

    Chances are, with Brown and No. 2 tight end Jesse James both gone, McDonald will be asked to do even more. He received 72 targets in 2018. Expect that number to push to 90 or more in 2019.

    McDonald welcomes the challenge.

    "I think it’s required," he said. "It’s definitely being asked and I will embrace it.”

    If he catches 60 or more passes, he'll have a pretty good shot at a Pro Bowl. After all, Rob Gronkowski is retired. And the 2018 Pro Bowl tight ends in the AFC were the Chiefs' Travis Kelce, the Colts' Eric Ebron and the Raiders' Jared Cook.

    Kelce is an absolute shoe-in to make the Pro Bowl again this year. With Gronkowski retired, he's the clear-cut choice as the top tight end in the AFC.

    But Ebron made it in largely based on his touchdown production -- 13 in 2018 -- though he did have 66 receptions for 750 yards, as well.

    Cook, meanwhile, is now playing for the Saints, having signed as a free agent.

    There are some other players who will vie for a spot, including the Chargers' Hunter Henry, but McDonald is going to get plenty of opportunities.

    The question for him is health. Because of his rough-and-tumble style of play, McDonald gets nicked up from time to time. In his first season in Pittsburgh, because he joined the team so late — joining the Steelers in the week before the regular season opener — the coaching staff erred on the side of caution. If McDonald didn't practice the week leading up to a game, he didn't play. The staff hadn't built up that kind of trust with him yet.

    Now, it has. So much so, in fact, he'll be counted on to be a major part of the offense. He is, after all, the Steelers' most athletic and complete tight end since pre-knee injury Heath Miller.

    That led to McDonald playing in 15 games in 2018, matching his career high, even though he wasn't always a full practice participant. Unless he suffers some kind of major injury in 2019, chances are he'll see at least that many games this season.

    And that's why he's my pick as the best bet as a first-time Pro Bowl player for the Steelers in 2019.

    https://www.dkpittsburghsports.com/2019/06/01/steelers-analysis-vance-mcdonald-pro-bowl-dl/
     
  24. Johnny Tightlips

    Johnny Tightlips Guru

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    Im very skeptical as to the fluidity of this move....the dude is like 6'7 280, hes not playing linebacker, hes probably just going to get cut but who knows maybe Bruce Arians knows sometime I dont
     
  25. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Blurb I found about Diontae Johnson, compare him to his more productive and athletic teammate Cody Thompson, who went undrafted:

    1. Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers
    After the combine, I didn’t project Johnson to get drafted. As a small school prospect (Toledo) who struggled to produce in his final season, these type of prospects tend to fizzle out pretty quickly when getting evaluated by the NFL. Johnson did get a combine invite but struggled badly in testing, posting bottom percentile scores across the board. Considering all this, it’s truly shocking he was drafted in the third round, but now that he has been, especially by a team as prolific at drafting WRs as the Steelers, he’s certainly worth reviewing. Johnson is most known for his 2017 season where he took over featured duties when Toledo teammate WR Cody Thompson was lost for the season due to injury.
     

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