Let The Light Be Your Guide …… But If You Just Happen To Be In The Dark & Clueless ……. Then Your Ass Is Grass !
By tophatal ………. 05/09/2012 …. 10:50:32 PM
Well now that the NFL Draft descended upon us with the expectations of awe and surprise , we now get the see the players drafted acclimatize themselves to the professional ranks. With Andrew Luck going to the Indianapolis Colts and Robert Griffin III to the Washington Redskins . It has to be said that these two highly prized and gifted athletes will be under the microscope , while the eyes of the NFL analysts and fans will place them both the glare . For coaches Chuck Pagano and Mike Shanahan ., their very careers will be determined by how both of these quarterbacks fare over the course of this season . The expectations are undoubtedly high , given the performances of the Carolina Panthers’ … Cam Newton over the course of last season .
Slide show for your perusal .
It should come as no surprise that once inserted into the Panthers’ lineup , the former Auburn Tigers’ quarterback simply lit up scoreboard for his new team. For the front office of the franchise their choice in making Cam Newton the number one overall pick from the 2011 NFL Draft was indeed justified . Now there’s no denying that this year’s draft seemed to be ” all about the quarterback ” and the fact that several players at the position , appeared to be a proven commodity. From my own perspective I am not so sure , as I feel that beyond RGIII and Andrew Luck , there’s no real guarantee as to what the fans should expect from the quarterbacks in question. Quarterback’s don’t a dime a dozen and the truly great ones in the NFL are something of a rarity . Granted , over the last fifteen years the players drafted at the position , we have been graced with the presence of Tom Brady , Peyton Manning , Drew Brees , Alex Smith , Eli Manning , Matt Stafford , Matt Ryan and Ben Roethlisberger . All of the players in question with the exception of Ryan , Stafford and Smith have yet play on the grandest stage of them all , and that is in the Superbowl . It is every NFL players’ dream to play on that particular stage and undoubtedly be part of the team that raises the Lombardi Trophy .
The Miami Dolphins it would seem had the presence of mind to take Ryan Tannehill as their first round choice and as the eighth overall pick in the first round . Head coach Joe Philbin and GM Jeff Ireland , with the quarterbacks already on their roster in David Garrard and Matt Moore will equate with Tannehill being a backup to the two seasoned veterans , as he gets to learn the ropes over the Dolphins’ upcoming season . It should come as no surprise that the Dolphins’ quarterbacks from 2011 , they were amongst the worst performing quarterbacks within the AFC East as well as the league as a whole.
Trent Richardson was the first running back taken in this draft and it has to be said that the former Alabama (Crimson Tide) player this past season showed us why he was one of the very best at the position within College Football . Richardson knows that if can be productive for his new team , the Cleveland Browns , then it may well set the fans’ minds at ease . . God knows , last season the Browns had their issues on both sides of the ball and then some . This season however , it’s envisaged that the coaching staff led by Pat Shurmur will see a marked improvement in this team , over their accomplishments of 2011 .
Now while Browns’ President Mike Holmgren seemed to be under no illusion in drafting Brandon Weeden , I get the impression that this his way of sending a clear message to his incumbent starter at the position …. Colt McCoy ! Barely two seasons into his NFL career , having been drafted in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft , the player now finds himself at a crossroads in his tenure with the Browns’ organization . A budding quarterback controversy or not , there’s something amidst behind this whole scenario that is about to be played out during this off-season as well as over the entire regular season schedule of the Cleveland Browns. Weeden , no doubts wants to impress upon his teammates that he’s ready to start , while McCoy simply wants to prove to everyone that he’s capable of playing the game at a high standard and in leading the team to great success. Hell, within the NFC North , as good as Browns appear to be on paper , I think that they are going to have problems not just within their division but also across the whole panacea of the NFL as the season comes into focus for the organization !
Mike Holmgren may not have intended to initiate a quarterback controversy but he’s going to have one on his hands , and it will not augur well for the franchise should things plummet into sheer immaturity , by either one of these players.
Last year , may well have been ” the year ” of the quarterback but to my mind the most impressive players over the course of the season were the wide receivers and tight ends ! Hell , without that staple of receivers , the likes of Manning (Eli) , Stafford , Brees , Brady and Rodgers wouldn’t have looked that good . And this draft has provided us with several players who could prove to be just as successful at the aforementioned positions ( TE & WR ) under the right set of circumstances . Justin Blackmon and Michael Floyd were viewed as the elite , amongst the wide receivers , with Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen being seen as perhaps the best of the tight ends taken in this draft. With the success achieved by Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez last season for the New England Patriots , it could well be a mixed bag of blessings and disappointments for the rookie receivers and wide receivers , and for their respective coaches . And as prolific as the teams’ offenses were this past year I am inclined to believe that we will be in for more of the same in 2012 ! One simply hopes that the teams’ defenses can with-hold such an onslaught . The defensive coordinators and offensive coordinators around the NFL will be fighting a battle of wits against their strategic counterparts , over the course of the upcoming season , no doubt . Care to guess who’s likely to be viewed as the winner in such a scenario ? Not the coaches but the fans , I kid you not ! Isn’t this why we all love the NFL to begin with ?
Other than the gut-wrenching loss (21-17) by my beloved Patriots in the Superbowl to the New York Giants this past season , for me the biggest disappointment was to see how inept the San Diego Chargers had become ! Now for the life of me, in the wake of the fallout from their season where the team fell to a miserably and inconsolable 8-8 record within the AFC South I am still trying to figure out how Norv Turner was still retained by the organization ! GM A J Smith and COO & owner , Dean Spanos either had to be in awe of the ineptitude shown by Turner and his coaching staff or they simply felt that one more year with the head coach at the helm would suffice . Pardon me for saying this , but either premise seems to suggest that Smith and Spanos are two of the dumbest as_holes in the NFL today ! Your thoughts on the matter , especially if you just happen to be a San Diego Chargers’ fan ?
The off-season saw within the Chargers’ organization an upheaval in the roster , with several players departing elsewhere. In their place, a number of free agent signings were made along with the draft choices deemed a necessity from this NFL Draft . The “window of opportunity “ for Chargers’ quarterback Philip Rivers has diminished greatly and this off-season with the acquisition of Peyton Manning by the Denver Broncos , does anyone truly believe that Rivers’ task will now become any easier ? The two teams will meet over the course of their divisional schedule in weeks’ six and eleven and both of those match-ups should go a long way in determining the direction that the teams are said to be heading in at that time .
On paper this Chargers’ roster , possess some very talented players but I am not so sure that the cohesiveness sought will be there , in order to for them compete at a high-caliber throughout the course of their season ! Week one sees the team taking on divisional and in-state rivals the Oakland Raiders at the Oakland Coliseum , Oakland , California , in-front of what is sure to be a packed crowd , with millions more watching the televised event nationally . The Raiders themselves , have something to prove after another season of turmoil in 2011 , with firing of Hu Jackson and simply the jettisoning of players whom the front office felt were superfluous to their needs . Has there been a season over the last five years where the Raiders simply haven’t sought throw the baby and bath water out the door as far as their ambitions are concerned ? Simply watching the Oakland Raiders’ fans suffer the indignity of seeing repeated failure , then apathy and sheer stupidity sets in with them lamenting about years gone by when the reality is all about the “here and now ” ! Have you ever witnessed such pomposity and bleeding heart from a group of fans who simply feel that their team is genuinely superior to everyone else ? The Oakland Raiders haven’t been of any relevance within the NFL in almost a decade . Ah , those poor fans but then again , should we expect anything but a bunch of whining from the Raiders and their legions of fans ? No , and that’s an emphatic no !
Now inasmuch as one might admire the legacy of the Raiders , you simply know that things have to be going downhill when the franchise considers the signing of Matt Leinart in the off-season to add their already burgeoning bunch of cast-off quarterbacks. Carson Palmer has yet to fulfill his potential in the NFL since being drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals seven years ago as a first draft round pick . I’m not so sure , whether or not Terrell Pryor still remains a work in progress for the Raiders’ coaching staff because one thing is for sure , the franchise now has two self-absorbed and coddled ingrates on their roster. Leinart and Pryor , what else is there now left to be said at this juncture ? You what ? You don’t give a flying #%ck about the Raiders ? Ah well , I guess that answers my question !
The one thing where do I believe that the Raiders will have a distinct advantage over their divisional rivals this upcoming season , it is that the team’s rushing offense is better than that of their main foes within the division. If Darren McFadden can withstand the rigors of a sixteen game schedule and come through unscathed . Then I believe that this team can win the AFC West outright ! If not , then it’s simply back to the drawing board once again . they’ll simply be
I personally , am not relishing anything on offer from the teams within the AFC West this upcoming season , as I have always felt that this is one of the poorest divisions in the NFL in terms of the overall competitiveness of the franchises playing there . An 8-8 record more often than not guarantees you a playoff berth while teams with better records within the conference are simply left on the outside looking in at season’s end. Thanks NFL , perhaps when you simply are fully prepared to address the issue of “player safety honestly ” then you and the a#sholes who preside over the league’s in-house Competition’s Committee can then deal with the re-seeding of the teams for the postseason based on the teams’ record rather than rewarding ineptitude based on a divisional record and standing ?
As the idiocy continues within the NFL in light of the ongoing soap opera that has now become the Saints bounty scandal . Can we all stop , sit back and take a deep breath and realize the fact that the actions of the NFL has bordered on being egregious and comparable to that of the tobacco companies as they sought to hide the dangers of smoking in light of their research and evidence provided by accredited world-renowned establishments of academic medical research . What has come to the fore is than more than 65% of the retired veterans who have subjected themselves to medical testing have some form of CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) often seen as a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in geriatrics . But yet somehow the constant denials by the NFL continues and senior members of the league hierarchy . And if that hasn’t been enough of a warning , we now have the NFLPA Executive Committee carrying on as if they now care about their members ,specifically the seasoned retired veterans of the NFL . DeMaurice Smith has called the evidence now in the league’s hands as none-exculpatory and without any veracity to it at all. That cuts against the grain, when one delves further and realizes that Anthony Hargrove one of the four players implicated in this mess , stated that he was asked to lie to the league’s investigators about the scheme initiated by former Saints’ defensive coordinator Gregg Williams , suborned by head coach Sean Payton , assistant coach Joe Vitt and team GM Mickey Loomis . Vitt, himself , it has been revealed lied to the league’s investigators , as well as to team owner Tom Benson . Call me naive but where the fu_king hell do the members of the Saints’ players get off as it relates to this whole scandal ? When asked to give their testimony to the league hierarchy the players involved ( Jonathan Vilma , Scott Fujita , Hargrove and Willis ) initially refused to answer questions on the grounds of self-incrimination and they only did so after , it was noted that they had a player rep and legal counsel for representation at the meetings . We should also be reminded , that DeMaurice Smith now comes across looking like a complete ass , who during the course of the union’s league deliberations at the time of the labor lockout , simply negotiated away his union’s rights , in order to simply gain a greater share of the NFL revenue pie . Now he and his union (NFLPA) want to come across looking like the “good guy” ? Not that anyone comes out looking good in light of this god-damn mess ! Roger Goodell , god , judge and jury . Was there anything that I missed in the use of those adjectives ?
Picture gallery for your perusal .
In light of this piece , what thoughts if any do you have concerning the salient points raised ? By all means simply leave a comment as you see fit .
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MAY 4: Andrew Luck (12) of the Indianapolis Colts looks on as he listens to offensive coordinator Bruce Arians (left) and quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen during a rookie mini-camp at the team facility on May 4, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images …
(2) Head coach Chuck Pagano of the Indianapolis Colts talks to the media following a rookie mini-camp at the team facility on May 4, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images ….
(3) ASHBURN, VA – MAY 06: Robert Griffin III (10) of the Washington Redskins speaks to members of the media after a practice during the Washington Redskins’ rookie mini-camp on May 6, 2012 in Ashburn, Virginia. Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images …
(4) Ryan Tannehill (17) of the Miami Dolphins talks to the media after the rookie mini-camp on May 4, 2012 at the Miami Dolphins training facility in Davie, Florida. Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images ….
(5) Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson , left, listens to quarterback Brandon Weeden during a news conference at the NFL football team’s headquarters in Berea, Ohio Friday, April 27, 2012. Richardson was the third overall pick and Weeden 22nd overall in the 2012 NFL draft . AP Photo/Mark Duncan ….
(6) Browns’ team President Mike Holmgren (right) is seen here with quarterback Colt McCoy during the team’s mini-camp at their training facility in Berea, Ohio , prior to a mid-season game in 2011 . With the drafting of Brandon Weeden , beat writers are now suggesting that a quarterback controversy is about to raise its ugly head prior to the start of training camp for the 2012 season for the Cleveland Browns between these two young quarterbacks . AFP/Photo/ Matt Horner ….
(7) San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner speaks during a news conference alongside Chargers owner Dean Spanos, left, in front of the team’s headquarters, Wednesday, May 2, 2012, in San Diego. Former NFL football star Junior Seau was found shot to death at his home Wednesday morning in what police said appeared to be a suicide. He was 43. AP Photo/Gregory Bull …
(8) Head coach Norv Turner of the San Diego Chargers talks to quarterback Philip Rivers (17) of the San Diego Chargers during their game against the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on January 1, 2012 in Oakland, California. Getty Images North America / Ezra Shaw …..
(9) Oakland Raiders’ third-round NFL football draft pick …… Tony Bergstrom , right, holds his jersey with general manager Reggie McKenzie during a news conference at the team’s headquarters in Alameda, Calif., Saturday, April 28, 2012. AP Photo/Paul Sakuma ….
Hot chic pic of the day …….. Jordan Carver . And a small montage of Carver for your edification and pleasure . What’s not to like !
Looking to not quite keep a firm grasp on things and for that we all thank you Jordan !