The Minnesota Vikings will not use their franchise tag on Case Keenum according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. This news doesn't really come as a surprise to me especially with the heavy speculation that they're going after Kirk Cousins. Case Keenum, is not worth the salary that would be attached with the franchise tag. Sure he had a fantastic year, however so did Ryan Fitzpatrick a couple seasons ago, and how did that turn out. The Vikings are smart in the front office and know Keenum greatly exceeded expectations last season. They aren't going let the success of last year blind them into spending a ton of their cap space bringing him back, when they know damn well he can't win them a Super Bowl.
This confirms that the Vikings will be looking elsewhere for QB options this offseason. With that being said Case Keenum still very well could end up on the Vikings, just at a much lower price than they franchise tag. If they have to bring back Keenum it shows that they have little to no faith in Bridgewater coming back and being their future QB. It also means that Kirk Cousins ended up going elsewhere. This is definitely good news for Vikings fans to hear because when it's announced they signed Keenum back they'll realized they're right back to where they always are. A good team with a very mediocre quarterback.
My answer to the question proposed in the headline? PLEASE GOD.
According to OBJ, if it's up to him, he won't be playing this preseason.
I don't have a single problem with Odell not wanting to play this preseason, and neither should anyone else. I understand Beckham is coming off a brutal leg injury, and the Giants need him to be at 100% and producing 100% from the moment the season starts, but the preseason is not worth it.
Ask any player in the league (who isn't fighting for a roster spot) and they'll tell you that they'd gladly sit out the preseason if their team allowed them to.
I think all Giants fans should expect #13 to be back to #13 things this season, and if we have any hope of salvaging what's left of the talent and opportunity for this group of players, we are going to need Odell to put up MVP-caliber play.
Now let's all watch some OBJ highlights and start the all-too-early Giants hype-train.
The Jaguars quietly secured the leaders of their franchise today for another 4 years. Tom Coughlin, Dave Caldwell, and Doug Marrone all received extensions today that’ll last them through the 2021 season. After the turnaround the Jaguars had this year it’d be a cardinal sin not to show these guys some love with some sense of security. The Jaguars were just a few plays away from taking out the Patriots and heading to the Super Bowl. These guys earned these extensions and in the AFC with the Patriots still dominating its always good to have Tom Coughlin on your side.
This move for the Jaguars also becomes a nice negotiation tactic for when talking to Kirk Cousins this offseason. Knowing that there’s stability in the front office is always promising especially for a guy coming from that shit show of situation in Washington. Match that with the unbelievably talented defense he’ll have, Leonard Fournette who he can turn around and hand the ball off to 25 times a game, and an above average offensive line. It’d be tough for Kirk Cousins to say no to such an amazing situation. The only setting that may be better is Minnesota, however in the highly competitive NFC it’ll be a lot tougher to win in the playoffs. In the AFC all you have to worry about is the Steelers, who they already beat last year in the playoffs, and the Patriots, who have a 41 year old quarterback.
The Jaguars also released Chris Ivory today. This move will free up $3 million in cap space that can be used towards something they actually need and will actually contribute beneficially for the team. That is something Chris Ivory was not very capable of doing in his time in Jacksonville. While with the Jaguars, Ivory had a total of 5 touchdowns and 7 fumbles, essentially meaning he did more bad than good. This $3 million could go towards a new contract for receiver Allen Robinson because lord knows the Jaguars need to have a go to wide receiver. Robinson missed all of last season with a torn ACL and the offense suffered because of it. Marquise Lee Allen Hurns, and Dede Westbrook combined to be probably the worst receiving core in all of football, so that’s something they’ll need to address. Other than that it’s all sunshine and rainbows in Jacksonville Florida right now.
The Chiefs continue to make big time offseason moves before the new league year even begins as they have come to an agreement with the Rams to trade Marcus Peters. The deal isn’t finalized yet, so exactly what the Chiefs are getting in return is yet to be specified. If I had to guess I’d say the Rams gave up a 3rd or 4th round pick and maybe an additional 7th rounder, I could and will be very wrong however. The NFL trade market is so unique it’s tough to judge the exact value for a player. As soon as the deal is final and we know what the return is I’ll update this blog.
This is a big time get for the Rams. After a surprise season in which they won the NFC West, they’re looking to quickly build of it, and turn it into a Super Bowl championship. I love their urgency to win now, especially with them being such a new commodity on the LA market. What do you do in the LA market? You add big time stars and Marcus Peters has proven he’s a big time star. This will also fill the void of Trumaine Johnson who is most certainly walking in free agency after this acquisition. The Rams recognize they need to add a few more pieces in order to win the NFC and compete for Super Bowl championships. With Gurley and Goff still on rookie deals it’ll allow them to spend elsewhere for now, however that window will be shutting very rapidly, so they have to make moves swiftly.
The Rams most definitely are a better team after this deal. Just hope it doesn’t come out that they gave up something ridiculous for him, although I highly doubt that’s the case. As for the Chiefs, this trade is a little bit of a head scratcher for me. Maybe it just wasn’t working out between him and the organization, or they just didn’t want to pay him. Losing Marcus Peters however, isn’t going to help fix their already weak secondary that got torched all year. Chiefs can still compete in the AFC, so rebuilding moves should not be their actions moving forward. Pat Mahomes will hopefully elevate this team to a level offensively that Alex Smith couldn’t to get them over the hump. I know one thing for sure, though. The Chiefs will need a strong defense if they want to win a championship, and trading off big pieces is not the way to achieve that.
Reports came out yesterday that Alshon Jeffery was getting surgery on his shoulder for a torn rotator cuff that he suffered in training camp You read that correctly, not the Super Bowl, training camp. Yes, Alshon Jeffery played an entire season with a torn rotator cuff like an absolute savage beast. I thought shit like that was only done in hockey, guys playing with torn ACL’s and shit, yet here’s Alshon Jeffery playing through what I’d imagine to be one of the more painful injuries. Especially since every time he catches a pass and gets hit his shoulder is probably getting effected one way or another. Even just lifting his arms to catch passes must’ve been difficult. He knew he had a one year deal, though. Nothing was guaranteed to him so he played through it, now he’s got a fat ass contract because of it. No pain no game.
It’s going to take Jeffery about 6 months to recover from the surgery. For all you math wizards out there you’re correct that lines up almost perfectly for the start of the season. As you all know these time tables for recovery, especially in a violent sport like football, are almost never correct. Doesn’t matter, I’m sure the Eagles can survive a week or two without him if necessary. Although, not having Carson Wentz or Alshon Jeffery to start the season would be a little concerning for Eagles fans I’m sure. After that Super Bowl run, I don’t think much is phasing them right now.
The Giants have Eli Manning, Davis Webb, and a #2 overall pick, so the question remains what is the future of our Quarterback position. Obviously in the now Eli is our guy. We're going to try to win with him for at least one more year is the feeling I'm getting from the Giants organization right now. Which ultimately leads us back to the question of what's the future of our quarterback position. That question will be answered April 26th, on draft night. If we take a QB, obviously that kid is going to be our guy for the future. If we decide to take a guy like Saquon Barkley instead, well then that means Davis Webb is our guy.
Let's not forget, Davis Webb was a 3rd round pick last year. That's not exactly something you just want to throw away. He wasn't viewed as a top notch talent, but neither was Tom Brady or Russell Wilson, and look how that turned out. With Webb learning under Eli for a couple seasons I'm sure his football IQ and decision making ability will be much better than almost any youngster coming into the league. Learning the game from a legend like Eli for that amount of time is something that's priceless. Most QB's never get an opportunity to do anything close to that when coming into the league, so it could have an Aaron Rodgers like effect on the kid. Webb did put up good numbers at Cal in his one season as starting QB, although in the PAC-12 it'd be pretty bad if he didn't put up monster numbers. From what I've seen from him in preseason he's pretty accurate, his footwork looks funky, and his arm strength doesn't look great. Not the best assessment, however it's hard to tell when he didn't know the system and is playing with a bunch of scrubs. He is 6'5" 230lbs, so he's got the QB build going for him.
I trust the Giants front office to make the right decision. They've seen this guy a ton in practice, at this point they should have an idea of whether or not he has the right tools to make it as a professional QB. If not, draft a QB that you think has the tools and we'll move forward from there. It would be so awesome to be able to use the 2nd pick on Saquon Barkley instead of a QB if we already got our guy in Webb. I'm all for this movement. I have a Davis Webb signed football that will exponentially increase in value if he becomes the starting QB of the Giants, so I'm all in on this. I know after a 3-13 season in which we benched Eli for Geno Smith it's hard to trust the organization, however they've been so solid for so many years we can't let one horrendous year tarnish their entire reputation. They somehow manage to fuck this situation up though, then it's time to panic because it'll start looking a lot like the team we share a stadium with around here.
The G.O.A.T. returns! Adam Vinatieri and the Colts are reportedly very close to finalizing a deal that will bring the legendary kicker back to Indianapolis for one more season.
Vinatieri is only 57 points behind Morten Andersen for the All-Time points leader in NFL history, and it is expected that he will be able to break that record this season, having scored well over 57 points in all but one season in his career, and that was due to injury.
Adam Vinatieri is considered one of, if not the greatest kicker in NFL history, and his late-game heroics have helped his team's win huge games, and Tom Brady himself will tell you Vinatieri saved him.
The undrafted, 22-year veteran, NFL 2000s All-Decade Team kicker, and 4x Super Bowl Champion, will likely hang it up after this season, but in all honesty, Vinatieri still doesn't look like he's lost a step.
It's that time of year again when sports are so slow that Mel Kiper's mock draft 2.0 is actually a story. Truthfully, any mock draft before the combine and pro days is complete trash because those sort of events change everything. With that being said let's jump into some ridiculous debate about the top 10 picks of the NFL Draft two months before it'll even take place.
Here's what Kiper's top 10 looked like:
Browns 1. Josh Allen, QB
Giants 2. Saquon Barkley, RB
Colts 3. Bradley Chubb, DE
Browns 4. Minkah Fitzpatrick, CB
Broncos 5. Sam Darnold, QB
Jets 6. Baker Mayfield, QB
Bucs 7. Quenton Nelson, OG
Bears 8. Tremaine Edmunds, LB
49ers 9. Denzel Ward, CB
Raiders 10. Roquan Smith, LB
The big surprise was Josh Rosen falling from the Giants at #2 to the Dolphins at #11. This is a big drop for absolutely nothing happening between mock draft 1.0 and 2.0. However, as a Giants fan I'm beginning to hate the fact that I actually like the idea of taking Saquon Barkley at #2. That's way too high of a pick to be taking a running back, especially in a deep QB draft with an aging franchise QB currently on their roster. Still, I feel like if Saquon Barkley becomes the player everyone thinks he's going to be then it'd be dumb not to take him. He's does everything you could want your running back to do which is almost never the case for a running back coming out of college. Usually they can't block or catch, but Barkley does it all. If the Giants take Barkley they're sending a message to the fan base that they're still going to try to win now with Eli and worry about the future later. I'm all for that, they just better have a solid fucking plan because it's not going to be easy to convince fans that you're going to flip a 3-13 team into a Super Bowl contender just like that.
As for the Browns, they have two top 5 picks, and the way Kiper has them slotted taking Allen and Fitzpatrick is just setting the Browns up for typical Browns failure. Allen is obviously the riskiest QB in the draft. He's got this big time upside, but at the same time is a huge risk to select #1 overall. Each day he begins to look more and more like Jamarcus Russell to me and less and less like Carson Wentz. As for Fitzpatrick, I don't know him too well, although I do know Alabama corner backs suck in the NFL. Remember Dee Milner for the Jets? Probably not, thtat's how bad he was. Well, I can see Minkah Fitzpatrick ending up as Dee Milner if he were to get picked by the Browns. Only the Browns are going to find a way to somehow butcher these two top 5 picks and end up back at square one like always.
Jets fans are definitley loving the Baker Mayfield pick and I'm just laughing to myself. What a bunch of idiots. I'm sorry, but if you honestly think Baker Mayfield is going to be the savior for that franchise you're an idiot. Was he a phenomenal college talent, of course he was. For his game to translate to the NFL though, he'd need to make major changes, and I just don't know if he'll be capable of doing that. I'm not going to make the idiotic Johnny Manziel comparison because that'd be so lazy. Although, I do think Baker Mayfield will have the same fate as Manziel, which is failing as a pro QB. Not because off the field issues, just because I don't think either of them are good enough to be NFL quarterbacks.
Bradley Chubb to Colts seems like only pick the consensus really agrees on right now.
Denzel Ward to the 49ers would start giving them a Jacksonville type feel to their defense.
Roquan Smith and Khalil Mack apart of the same linebacking core is not fair.
If the Broncos land Sam Darnold the NFL is fucked, so hopefully the Browns wake the fuck up.
Ryan Shazier,, star linebacker of the Pittsburgh Steelers suffered a brutal spine injury in week 13 against the Bengals that many thought would end his career. Shazier's spine compressed when he went to make a tackle leaving him without feeling in his extremities. He had been in the hospital for weeks before gaining feeling back in his legs. From the early optics of the situation it seemed as if Shazier would never play a down of football again, nor would he want to. After a life threatening injury like that I can't imagine stepping back on the field, however that's why Ryan Shazier is a warrior. Shazier has made comment saying he has to get back to the field so he can be the greatest ever. Now that's the mentality of a fucking savage.
This guy has me ready to run through a god damn tidal wave right now. How could you hear a guy that saw his career and life flash before his eyes say that he has to get back so he can be the greatest ever, and not want to be the best version of yourself. Shazier was an all world talent before the injury, so if he can get back to the player he was there's no doubt in my mind he could build himself a hall of fame resume. He's still very young, which should help him a little, but with an injury as serious as this one, all odds are stacked against. He doesn't seem to give a fuck, though, Shazier is tunnel visioning to the gold jacket and that's something I respect immensely.
What better story could the NFL write if Shazier were to comeback, rise back to an elite level, and finish out his career as a hall of famer. That'd be an all time inspirational story. This guy will have movies and documentaries made about him. He'll totally deserve it too. I'm pulling for Ryan Shazier to accomplish his mission along with everybody else. You just got to Shalieve.
The Miami Dolphins have placed the franchise tag on Jarvis Landry, restricting him from hitting the free agent market this offseason. Landry is set to make $16 million next season if he signs the franchise tag tender. Obviously him and the team can reach an agreement on a contract extension, but usually that doesn't happen very often. Look at Kurt Cousins and LeVeon Bell. Doesn't matter how good of a player you are sometimes, teams are extremely tentative of signing players to long term deals. Especially in this day an age where every free agent that hits the market gets to set the market by getting the biggest contract for his position. Jimmy G just got $27.5 million and he's played just 8 games in the NFL, don't tell me he's earned the right to be the highest paid QB. That's just how the market happens to work. I'm all for the players getting as much as possible, especially in football where these guys really put their lives on the line every Sunday. That leads me to my point of why I hate the fucking franchise tag.
The franchise tag is the worst part of contract negotiations in football. It stays around because everyone likes it except the players. Agents use it as a floor to negotiate contracts and the teams like it cause they ultimately control the player as long as they're willing to pay them the mean of the top 5 players at that given position. The players hate it because it guarantees them no safety net for the future. Every offseason they head into with a sense of uncertainty. There's no safety net for them if they get injured, there's no guarantee of a paycheck for them the following year, and there's no sense of stability within the organization. Franchise tagging a player is almost disrespectful to a player in some cases. It's essentially leading on that they don't fully trust you have a future with the team, and that's why they're unwilling to commit long term. No player wants to be apart of an organization that doesn't believe in them being apart of the long term picture.
My guess is that Juice Landry isn't all too happy with the tag. I'm sure he loves the $16 million guaranteed, however I'm sure he would've loved a 5 year $80 million contract a whole lot more. He's worth it, the Dolphins just aren't sure if they're going to move forward and try to compete, or begin the rebuilding process once again. Thus, leaving a player like Juice Landry is a state limbo. It must suck being brought into a dysfunctional organization that can never make up their mind. Regardless, Landry will be back with the Dolphins for at least another year barring any blockbuster trades around the draft. I just wanted to use this as a time to vent about why the franchise tag sucks ass. That'll be all.