Tag Archives: New England Patriots

NFL Quarterback Competitions

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Matt Flynn (pictured above) is going toe to toe with Russell Wilson for the starting quarterback job in Seattle.

By Jeremy Powers

They say competition is healthy. When NFL training camps open, the hot topic always centers on who will win the starting job. Not at running back, not at wide receiver, but at quarterback of course.

There are several teams with quarterback competitions at full speed as the second week of preseason approaches. Ironically, quarterback uncertainty is plaguing the same franchises every season. Teams like the Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, and New York Giants, among others have had the quarterback position nailed down with their Pro Bowl throwers, making them oblivious to what it’s like to have a competition for the top spot on the depth chart. For other teams like the Seattle Seahawks, Arizona Cardinals, Tennessee Titans, and Miami Dolphins, the coaching staff does not have that luxury and all they can do is hope they make the right decision.

These four situations may not be black and white, so here is my analysis of which quarterback is the best fit under center for their respective teams.

4. Seattle Seahawks: Pete Carroll has one of the more interesting competitions to focus on in the NFL. Management went out in the offseason and signed free agent Matt Flynn to a nice contract after he showed unique abilities in Green Bay. The question becomes, is Flynn really a franchise guy, or was he only the product of an efficient system under Mike McCarthy? The only way to find out is to put him to the test this preseason. The other player in the mix is rookie Russell Wilson, who on paper doesn’t look like a viable option (Tarvaris Jackson seems to have faded out of the race for the starting spot). But the more and more you watch him you see what kind of athlete he really is, and he really makes you want to give him the reigns. My prognosis, start Flynn. I think his abilities are sufficient, and if he really does fail to win games, then go to Wilson. The Seahawks defense should win them games anyway. Continue reading

NFL Games of the Week

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. The Pittsburgh Steelers lost an overtime thriller to the Denver Broncos back in January. Peyton Manning (pictured above) will do all in his power to get Denver another victory over the Black and Yellow in Week 1.

By Josh Kramer

Opening night is still well over a month away (September 5th), but anticipation for the 2012 NFL season is mounting.  With training camps, fantasy drafts, and more, people are all ears in regards to the 2012 NFL season.  The following is a guide for the upcoming season with a game a week to have circled on your calendar regardless of your fan allegiance.

Week 1:  Pittsburgh Steelers at Denver Broncos

Date/Time/Station:  9-9-2012/4:25PM/NBC

The Word:  What transpired on January 8, 2012 left a bitter taste in the mouths of Steeler Nation.  Tim Tebow may be gone, but Peyton Manning has arrived. Continue reading

Aside

By Josh Kramer Beantown is not exactly the place to be these days.  At least when it comes to sports.  First, the Boston’s beloved Red Sox had arguably the worst breakdown in baseball history, blowing a seemingly insurmountable nine-game lead during the course … Continue reading

The New England Tight Ends

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Jake Ballard (pictured right) adds to an already loaded tight end group in New England.

By Josh Kramer

The New England Patriots and the word winning have become synonymous over the past decade.  It is also no secret that a key to New England’s winning formula this past season centered around their tight ends.  If last year was the “Year of the Quarterback” in the NFL, this very well could be the “Year of the Tight End.”  Not only did New England have two very good tight ends, but arguably the two best in the NFL.  Well yesterday, they added a third very good tight end.

Meet Jake Ballard.  The third year former New York Giants tight end out of “The” Ohio State is the newest member of the defending AFC Champion Patriots.  After suffering a torn ACL, the Giants placed the talented youngster on waivers.  In typical New England fashion, the Patriots swooped in and nabbed the 6 foot 6 275 pound up and coming star from Springboro, Ohio. Continue reading

Food for Thought 6-12-2012

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. It is finally time for LeBron James (pictured above) to win his first ring.

By Josh Kramer

Mark it down.  The third time will be the charm for the King.  Call this the championship of threes.  It is LeBron’s third appearance in the NBA Finals.  James is coming off of his third MVP award.  While Kevin Durant is coming off his third consecutive scoring title.  Each team is led by an outstanding “Big Three.” Plus the pressure seems to be three times what it was in the conference finals on the King.  As much as I and the rest of the world hate to admit it, it is time for LeBron to acquire a ring.  Oklahoma City is a great team.  They have proved that since December.  The Thunder are young, exciting, and have outstanding overall team chemistry.  But Miami won’t be denied this time.  Besides, if OKC somehow pulls off the impossible, there may be a nuclear like explosion in South Beach.

On paper, this matchup is about as even as it gets.  That is why I have been calling it a dream matchup for months now. Both teams finished second in their respective conference.  The Heat won 46 games and had an average scoring margin of six points per game.  OKC won 47 games and won by an average of 6.1 points per game.  Both teams are led by an outstanding “Big Three.”  And they split in their regular season battles.  It is safe to say that on paper, not too much is revealed.

One key in OKC’s favor is the fact that they have home-court advantage.  The Heat were nearly unbeatable at home this year, but showed their fair share of flaws when traveling.  Next, the last time an MVP faced off with an NBA scoring champion in the finals was 1997.  The scoring champ (Jordan) led his team to a victory over the MVP (Malone).  But Miami also played in the NBA finals last year, while OKC did not.  In addition, the Heat did better than the Thunder overall this year when their “Big Three” were healthy.  OKC’s “Big Three” is not quite at the level of Miami’s outstanding trifecta, though they are very close.   The agony of last year’s defeat will be a major driving force for the Heat.  Expectations in Miami are so high, that if the Heat lose, it will be as if they had a worse year than the Charlotte Bobcats did.  If the Thunder are to lose, there will be disappointment, but also a ton of pride in a very successful season.  Losing is not an option for Miami.

Finally, Durant is playing great, but nobody is even on the same stratosphere as LeBron James right now.  The guy is playing like a hybrid of Michael Jordan, Oscar Robertson, and Magic Johnson.  As his teammates said after Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals, LeBron has that look in his eyes.  He won’t be denied.  He can’t be denied.  It is time for the King to finally take his seat on the throne. Continue reading

Ocho is a no go

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Chad Ochocinco (pictured above) is no longer the dominant receiver he once was between 2003 to 2007. Now he is just an average player who struggles to learn the playbook.

By Josh Kramer

Think back to the year 2007.  Who was the best wide receiver in all of football?   Now right away Randy Moss should come to mind after reeling in a record 23 touchdown receptions and nearly helping the Patriots complete the first perfect season in the NFL since 1972 (Dolphins).  On most people’s list Chad Johnson would rank as number two or three.  Between the years of 2003 to 2007, Chad Johnson was no only one of the most entertaining players in the game, he was always one of the elite.  During the four-year span of 2003 to 2006, Chad Johnson became the only player in NFL history to lead his conference in receiving yards for four consecutive seasons.

Boy have times changed.  Not only has his game seen a colossal decline, his name has changed.  Yesterday, Ochocinco hit rock-bottom when he was released by the New England Patriots after just one season.  As mentioned earlier, Ochocino was one of the best players on the planet not that long ago.  Since, he has become arguably the most influential athlete in the world of social media, and possibly the least influential on the actual field.  Ochocinco may have nearly 3.5 million followers on Twitter, but he amassed an abysmal 15 catches last season for a meager 276 yards and one touchdown. Continue reading

Coughlin deserves it

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Tom Coughlin (pictured above) has been highly criticized over the years. Yesterday, he finally received some of the credit he deserves in signing a three-year extension worth 20 million dollars.

By Josh Kramer

Tom Coughlin never actually looks happy.  He was likely smiling on the inside yesterday though when he signed a three-year contract worth 20 million dollars.  Not too many coaches have sat on a hotter seat than Coach Coughlin has during his “tumultuous” eight years roaming the sidelines at the Meadowlands.  Yesterday, Coughlin was finally awarded monetarily for bringing the Giants their second Super Bowl championship in five years.

The harshest critics in the world reside in New York City.  If you can’t take the heat, then get out is the motto in the Big Apple.  Over the years, Tom Coughlin has dealt with as much, or more heat, than any other coach in the NFL (that still has a job).  If we are being entirely honest, if the Giants had failed to win in Week 16 and Week 17 last year, Coughlin likely would have been fired.  Instead, the Giants went on a magical run of six straight victories resulting in the organization’s fourth Super Bowl championship.

I for one have never understood the skepticism in regards to Coughlin. Continue reading