Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Free Agency: Day 2

Couple of big time signings today, Sidney Rice is a Seahawk while Donovan McNabb became a Viking, Steve Breaston left for Kansas City, Matt Hasselbeck didn’t have to wait long for new work. And the Jets got more interesting (didn’t know that was possible) So let’s dive in!

Sidney Rice, WR Seattle Seahawks: I’ll be completely honest, this signing caught me by surprise. I knew that the Seahawks had been looking to add a big bodied receiver as they demonstrated by going after Brandon Marshall (who later signed with the Dolphins) and Vincent Jackson (who is still in San Diego).

So when I heard that the Seahawks were in a bidding war with the Vikings over Rice I expected the Seahawks to strike out again and Rice would be with the Vikes for the long term. And I was wrong. This really causes a problem for the Vikings coming into this season that they’ll have to move quickly to fix.

As could be seen by Brett Favre’s early struggles last season the Vikings don’t function well without Rice. Percy Harvin does not play well at the one and is at his best when he can work out of the slot, Bernard Berrian just did not play well and Visanthe Shiancoe is best as a tight end and only as a tight end. Luckily for the Vikings I have a solution that might not cost them a dime more than they’re currently paying.

At the beginning of the offseason the Vikings quietly signed Devin Aromashodu away from the Bears. The name might tinkle a little bell in the heads of Vikings fans as Aromashodu was the one who ran away with the Vikings’ chance to win in overtime during Favre’s first season. Aromashodu is tall at 6’2 with great speed and good leaping ability, similar to Rice. Had Rice re signed with the Vikings then I would have expected Aromashodu to take over for the ineffective Berrian at the 2 spot. If the Vikings choose not to move to replace Rice I’m just saying that Aromashodu is an option.

On the flipside this is a definite win for Seattle who got a receiver with the frame and ability they were looking for. This also might give Tarvaris Jackson the slightest of edges when he goes against Leinart and Clipboard Jesus as he has worked previously with the teams new No. 1.

Donovan McNabb, QB Minnesota Vikings: Like I said, open and shut, the inevitable has happened. McNabb is coming to Minnesota to compete with Christian Ponder and provide veteran guidance to the Vikings. Unfortunately Minnesota (as I just explained in my traditionally long rant format) just lost it’s top receiver. On the upside Minnesota is still a more pleasant team than Washington for McNabb to be a part of. Whether McNabb or Ponder open the season as the starter will be a closely followed battle in camp, though due to the unstable QB situations around the league that doesn’t mean much.

Matt Hasselbeck, QB Tennessee Titans: The Hasselbeck era in Seattle has ended and Hasselbeck didn’t have to wait long for work, signing on with the Tennessee Titans and providing the calm of a veteran in the wake of Kerry Collins’ surprise retirement. With that handled the Titans can rest easy and allow their rookie QB Jake Locker to learn on the sidelines as opposed to shoving him into the fire from day 1. Expect Hasselbeck to play well with pro bowl running back Chris Johnson by his side.

Steve Breaston, WR Kansas City Chiefs: You remember when you were a kid and you lost your favorite toy in October and you were so upset that you were in a funk for several days? That’s how Chiefs QB Matt Cassel felt after losing his offensive coordinator Charlie Weis to Florida. Cassel seemed to be in a slump shortly following the announcement that Weis was departing to the college football world. So what did the Chiefs do to cheer him up? They brought him some new toys. Cassel flowed well with the team’s top wide out, Dwayne Bowe, last year but seemed to suffer from a dearth of other targets. The Chiefs went out and drafted Jonathan Baldwin who stand 6’4 with tremendous leaping ability. In addition Steve Breaston left from the Cardinals to sign on with the young Chiefs.

Santonio Holmes, WR New York Jets: Holmes, sweet Holmes. Obvious puns aside the Jets got priority one off their offseason wish list by bringing Santonio Holmes to New York for the long haul with a 5 year contract. In the end Holmes was going to head back to the Jets where he has the best chance of winning another Super Bowl and the most motivating coach in the NFL. Side effect: Braylon Edwards is probably too expensive and the Jets are rumored to be dusting off a file entitled Moss, Randy.

DeAngelo Williams, RB Carolina Panthers: This one was really between Carolina and Denver and Carolina won. Carolina won back it’s leading rusher today with a long term contract preserving the tandem of Williams and Jonathan Stewart. John Fox meanwhile is still minus a running back and I predict he’ll take a long look at Marion Barber.

Other Tales of Interest

Orton talking with Dolphins: Things seem to be settling at the quarterback position as Orton seems to have been targeted by the Miami Dolphins who are reportedly in negotiations with the Broncos for a trade. Depending on the deal this could be a win-win for Miami as they get a more steady option at QB to compete with the erratic Chad Henne. The Broncos, depending on what they get in return free up some cap space so they can get those defensive lineman they asked Santa for.

Kolb deal by Friday: The long talked about deal between the Eagles and the Cardinals regarding Eagles’ second stringer Kevin Kolb is a reality. One need only look to the fact that the Eagles briefly had a link on their website where fans could buy Rodgers-Cromartie jerseys…in Eagles green. Yeah, this deal is going to happen sometime before the end of the week.

Nnamdi still looking at options: Apparently I was wrong to count the Jets out of the race for Nnamdi Asomugha. Should the Jets pull off a salary cap miracle and sign Asomugha to the Jets they have officially become the league’s best secondary. There can’t be any question about it with the top two corners in the league making life a living hell for all offensive coordinators required to play against them. A deal like this would instantly become the talk of the league and would have ripples that could reach as far as Houston. If the Jets sign Asomugha they’ll have to release Antonio Cromartie who could be sought after by the Houston Texans or other teams who came in second for Asomugha.

Plaxico sweepstakes narrows to two: Plaxico Burress is scheduled to meet with the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New York Giants tomorrow, leading to speculation that Burress has decided that one of two teams with whom he has a history. Burress is one of the few free agent wide outs still on the market

Redskins: All talk, no splash? The Redskins, expected to be big spenders in free agency have been strangely quiet these past few days. The Redskins have Brandon Stokely and Donte Stallworth yet barely made a peep about Holmes. Are they waiting for Braylon Edwards? Are they still attempting to buy their way into the race for Asomugha? What is going on in DC?
Coming soon
More free agency talk, some college football predictions and can't miss games, similar analysis for the pros and my opinion on what's next for Butch Davis.

Free Agency: Day 1

Ok so technically it’s morning but I still count this as “later tonight”. So today was eventful with several “signings” taking place even though contracts cannot be signed until Friday night. So without further ado.

Notable Signings

Mark Herzlich, LB New York Giants: The Giants rectified one of the great injustices of the 2011 draft by making Mark Herzlich an NFL linebacker. Herzlich is everything one can ask for in a player, a brave player who survived cancer and shows great playmaking ability and a dogged determination and proven leadership capabilities. This is also a great signing for the Giants because they receive a linebacker who will bring some leadership to their weak linebacking core.

Tarvaris Jackson, QB Seattle Seahawks: Things just got interesting. Tarvaris Jackson endured a couple of years as the Vikings quarterback before Brett Favre came to town and made Jackson “That one guy with the clipboard”. Regardless T-Jack is being reunited with his old Offensive Coordinator, Darrell Bevel, and will be competing with Clipboard Jesus and…

Matt Leinart, QB Seattle Seahawks: And this is where things get very interesting. Bevel has his guy from his old job, but so does Head Coach Pete Carroll. Granted Leinart hasn’t demonstrated the ability, mental make up or leadership capabilities of an NFL QB but I have faith that Carroll believes he can get the old Heisman winner up and running again. Although there is a precedent for Carroll turning trash into treasure. Receiver Mike Williams played for Carroll back in his USC days back when Carson Palmer was still the big man on campus. Williams however was out of the NFL after consistently performing below his potential, being arrogant and struggling with discipline (sound familiar?) This is Leinart’s last best chance and if anyone is going to get the best from Leinart it will be Carroll. It will be an interesting camp battle between Jackson, Clipboard Jesus and USC’s Golden Boy.

Pat Devlin, QB Miami Dolphins: Most of you probably don’t know much about Devlin, in general people tend to remember him because he “played where Joe Flacco went to school”. While Devlin is not the prospect that Flacco was he brings some solid attributes. What I’m curious about is what this means for Miami regarding their QB situation. Is Devlin their project? Or is he their competition for Henne? Does this mean Vince Young is out of the picture? Another interesting camp situation here to keep an eye on.

Jeremiah Masoli, QB San Francisco 49ers: I singled this out as my last notable signing of the say because it caught my attention the most out of a list I saw earlier today. Masoli, former quarterback for the Oregon Ducks and the Ole Miss Rebels is now an NFL QB. I’m intrigued to see how Harbaugh plays this one. The 49ers are a team in search of a quarterback, some say that the teams pick of Colin Kaepernick is the answer, others say that Alex Smith deserves another shot, and still others question whether it might not be worth it to call up Joe Montana (not really). But I didn’t in my wildest dreams see Harbaugh and Co. looking into Masoli’s corner. Whether Masoli makes the roster is obviously up in the air but I’m curious to see what Masoli does with the spotlight on him again.

Cap Casualties and Other Players on the Move

Roy Williams, WR Dallas Cowboys: We all saw this one coming, but there was something about seeing it in print that made it all so real. Roy Williams was not a good fit in Dallas and ultimately was put on notice the minute Dez Bryant showed up and refused to carry Williams’ pads. From that point on his days were numbered and his game changing fumble on Turkey day didn’t help. The Cowboys have space to clear and have cut co many players today that it’s more a list of who the Cowboys cut today than it is a list of who the Cowboys cut today.

Matt Hasselbeck, QB Seattle Seahawks: In an effort to break up the soon to be flood of Dallas players I’ll have to describe being cut in the next couple of minutes I write of Matt Hasselbeck and the end of his era in Seattle. Hasselbeck despite throwing more touchdowns than interceptions last season figures to be coveted this offseason (Tennessee anyone?) as his veteran status can stabilize several quarterback situations this offseason.

Marion Barber, RB Dallas Cowboys: We also saw this coming but the days of Marion the Barbarian and the Dallas backfield are over. Barber should have a good market especially if John Fox strikes out with signing DeAngelo Williams.

Kyle Orton, QB Denver Broncos: And so begins the legend of the Mile High Messiah, the Tim Tebow era has begun in Denver and Orton is on the move. Similar to Matt Hasselbeck, Orton is in high demand beyond the walls of Mile High stadium. Orton could end up any number of places, if one thing is for certain it is that Orton will not be out of work for long.

Leonard Davis, G Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys have finally gotten serious about improving their offensive line and also about the fact that they needed to get under the cap. So Davis is gone and will find work where a guard is needed. No doubt his three pro bowls in four years will help his case.

Honorable Mention: Marc Colombo, T Dallas Cowboys

Still at Large

Nnamdi Asomugha, CB Oakland Raiders: See the article I published earlier, you’ll find all you need.

Kevin Kolb, QB Philadelphia Eagles: Also dealt with in the article below.

Santonio Holmes, WR New York Jets: This one has been speculated as a battle between the persuasive power of Rex Ryan and the money of Daniel Snyder. Personally I have my money on the Jets to retain Holmes keeping him as Mark Sanchez’s #1 playmaker. While Holmes might be tempted by a monster contract he is also playing for the most well liked coach in the league on a team that has been to back to back AFC championship games. Whereas the Redskins can offer him a year in which he’ll possibly be playing with John Beck as his quarterback…things to think about.

Braylon Edwards, WR New York Jets: One of three wide receivers who the Jets are trying to keep in New York, should Holmes stays then the Redskins may turn to his Watson (I’m not funny, but I try hard) Edwards, in spite of some off field issues and at times shaky hands, has a large frame and a physical styles that would make him a good fit for teams trying to add size at receiver (Redskins, Bears, Chargers etc.)

Plaxico Burress, WR: Speaking of size at receiver, Plaxico Burress is reportedly having a meeting at some point in the near future with his old team the New York Giants. Almost as widely speculated as Kolb or Asomugha, Burress has been talked about with the Giants, Eagles, Bears, Seahawks and Redskins.

Tyson Clabo, T Atlanta Falcons: A solid addition to an offensive line, Clabo could simply re sign with the Falcons but has also been talked about with the Vikings, Seahawks, and Bears.

Ray Edwards, DE Minnesota Vikings: Edwards looks to be on his way out in Minnesota, to pursue life elsewhere and possibly as a featured pass rusher. The most likely landing spot I have for Edwards is the Atlanta Falcons who have been looking to add a pass rusher aside from Jonathan Abraham.

Jonathan Joseph, CB Cincinnati Bengals: Part of one of the league’s best tandems at any position but especially at cornerback, Joseph is a pro bowler at a young age. He’s no Revis but this man can upgrade a secondary. Joseph will probably going to re sign with the Bengals though I’ve also thought that I could see him signing with the Vikings or a team that misses out on the Asomugha sweepstakes.

Sidney Rice, WR Minnesota Vikings: Rice was a star for Brett Favre in his first year with Brett Favre and showed tremendous vision, focus, leaping and playmaking ability. Rice has the assets of a #1, though it remains to be seen how much of Rice’s breakout year was the Favre effect. Rice is being looked at by the Vikings, Seahawks and the Bears as a dark horse.

Kyle Orton, QB Denver Broncos: Detailed above in Players on the Move

Matt Hasselbeck, QB Seattle Seahawks: Same thing as Orton

Cullen Jenkins, DE Green Bay Packers: Jenkins is generally considered to be a fit in almost any 3-4 scheme, I see Jenkins or his brother Kris taking off for DC and piles of money. Possibly both, nothing says franchise like two guys with the same last name (just ask the Williams Wall).

Donovan McNabb, QB Washington Redskins: This one is actually pretty open and shut from where I’m standing. Reports say that the Vikings are prepared to offer a sixth round pick for McNabb and a conditional sixth rounder. Considering how determined the Shanahans seem to be to get rid of him I think this one is wrapped up, but until Friday it just what I think.

Jamarcus Russell, QB: This was a joke.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Finally Free


It’s over, it’s all over! The lockout is over and across the nation people can give thanks that ESPN is no longer 40% “Roger Goodell walking out of a building with DeMaurice Smith” stock footage, which is good because I had run out of things to write about. But that’s all fixed now and I am ready to speculate like there is no tomorrow (I have a lot of exciting things going on in my life, does it show?).

So now that there will definitely be a season we get to ask the really tough questions, Where will Nnamdi Asomugha sign, is Kevin Kolb a Cardinal or an Eagle, Why did Jay Cutler dump Kristin Cavallari, and many more.

First Things First

Throughout the lockout there have been a number of names thrown around, Roger Goodell, Demaurice Smith, Vincent Jackson, Tom Brady, Jerry Jones and Nnamdi Asomugha. Of these names the one that probably triggered the fewest group groans was Asomugha, possibly due to several blank stares permeating the room.

Luckily for Asomugha the lockout has created a nice bit of buzz as he has become this year’s most talked about free agent. Asomugha has played shutdown corner for the Raiders since being drafted in 2003. Only the New York Jets’ All Universe cornerback Darrelle Revis has been mentioned more often in recent seasons as the league’s best corner. Asomugha has elected to become a free agent this season as he goes off in pursuit of Super Bowl rings.

Due to the shortcomings of numerous NFL teams at the cornerback position, Asomugha has his pick of teams and I will now piggyback off his real accomplishments by giving my opinion on who he’ll sign with.

Washington Redskins: (Unlikely)

The Redskins are expected to be big spenders in the coming free agency period. So naturally with their deficiencies in most areas of the field many expect them to dish out the dollars to Asomugha. Seems like solid logic until we remember the reason that Asomugha is leaving in the first place. Asomugha is 30 years old and realizes that he’s closer to the of his career than the beginning, Asomugha is leaving the Raiders because he feels there are better chances for him elsewhere in the world. Moving from the Raiders to the Redskins does not make things better, it actually is debatably worse.

Philadelphia Eagles: (Highly likely)

The Eagles, as I’ve noted in an earlier article, weren’t great against the pass and relied a lot on Asante Samuel. But what if the Eagles could make their #1 corner into their #2? What if they signed Asomugha to an on the rise Eagles team, taking pressure off their youth at safety? I feel Asomugha would be game for that. So I will put down the Eagles as my front runners for the Asomugha sweepstakes. The key I see here is whether the Asomugha signing happens before or after a Kolb trade. If Kolb, as has been speculated for weeks, is sent to the Cardinals in exchange for say a 2nd rounder and CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie then I would say that it would put the Eagles out of the picture for Asomugha.

Dallas Cowboys: (Possible)

The Cowboys definitely have an incentive to go after Asomugha, just look what happened the last time they had a shutdown corner added to the roster (Deion Sanders, and they won the Super Bowl). Not to mention that the Cowboys are looking to upgrade their secondary and may be parting ways with Terrance Newman. Jerry Jones loves to throw money at players so this seems like a definite possibility. The only reason I don’t have the Cowboys with the high rating I gave the Eagles is because the Cowboys are making deep cuts to get under the salary cap and might not have space for the monster contract that Asomugha both expects and deserves.

Houston Texans: (Likely)

I’m not going to review the obvious, the Texans have a great offense and their defense was abysmal. Everyone knows that, however the addition of Asomugha would make Houston’s new defensive coordinator, Wade Phillips, giddy. The Texans are talked about often as being a contender for the playoffs if only they could get past Peyton Manning. Having Manning with one less option due to Asomugha’s coverage skills might just be what the Texans need. whether Asomugha feels the same remains to be seen.

Baltimore Ravens: (Possible)

Also well documented are the Ravens’ struggles at CB. And a presence like Asomugha could help lead the Ravens past their hated rival, the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Ravens are adding a player however whom they consider to be a steal, Jimmy Smith who fell to the Ravens at pick #27. Whether the Ravens decide that this is enough and that they will turn their minds to other needs is a storyline I’ll keep an eye on.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: (Unlikely)

I’m convinced that sometime within the next decade Josh Freeman and the Bucs will bring home a Super Bowl title. Quote me on it. The Bucs seem to have a winning formula going for them as they’ve built a remarkable roster that was arguably the best team not to make the playoffs. Among these soon to be and already stars are QB Josh Freeman, runningback LeGarrete Blount, WR Mike Williams (not to be confused with the Seahawks’ receiver of the same name), DT’s Gerald McCoy & Brian Price and rookie defensive ends DaQuan Bowers and Adrian Clayborn. Notably missing from this list is troubled cornerback Aqib Talib who will stand trial in 2012 for assault with a deadly weapon. Reportedly the Bucs won’t cut Talib, who is one of the games best young corners. As a result I’m guessing it’s unlikely that Asomugha lands in the Pirate Ship.

Kolb To Arizona?

Perhaps one of the most talked about QB’s who isn’t a starter (along with Green Bay’s Matt Flynn and the Seahawks’ Clipboard Jesus Charlie Whitehurst) is Kevin Kolb of the Eagles. Most reports seem to agree that Kolb is heading to the Cardinals in exchange for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a 2nd round draft choice. In my opinion everybody wins here as the Cardinals get to have a set starter going into the season and have a reason for Larry Fitzgerald to stay in Arizona. In the QB deficient NFC West that may be all they need to compete with the rising Rams. The Eagles get to sort out their CB situation and get a draft pick in the process.

Cutler breaks heart of reality TV star

Just kidding, I don’t cover celeb gossip. More tonight as we take in the first day of free agency.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Heisman List #2

It is 4am, I cannot sleep. I am bored. These are the facts of the case and they are undisputed. In order to make myself feel useful and stave off my boredom I have finished the second Heisman watchlist I mentioned a few weeks ago. What will I write on next? Not even I know.

Heisman List V2

1.       Andrew Luck

For all the same reasons as I listed months ago I still have Andrew Luck holding the Heisman (and possibly the glass football) at the end of this next season. Luck is an incredible talent with the size and playmaking ability that you’d ideally look for in a qb to pair with a strong arm and solid scrambling abilities. He may be missing his old coach but I have faith that Luck can rise above this.

2.       Matt Barkley

Let’s put it this way, a final showdown between Barkley and Luck is must see television. Barkley threw 26 touchdowns last year and many feel that he has just barely scratched the surface of his potential.

3.       Trent Richardson

Mark Ingram’s backup these past two years built quite a bit of hype for himself this past season. Filling in for Mark Ingram, Richardson rushed for a career high 144 yards against Penn State and lead many to believe he could be even better than Ingram. Richardson is a wrecking at 220 lbs and explosive. Look for Richardson’s name to be called a lot during Heisman trophy debates.

4.       Taylor Martinez

I bumped T-Magic up and Kellen Moore down for this issue. Why? Is it because I believe that Taylor Martinez is better than Kellen Moore? Absolutely not, simply put this is a list built on Likelihood not Desire, But more on that later. Martinez in my view is better positioned to be in real contention because for reasons I understand yet also don’t comprehend the world just refuses to take Boise State seriously. Martinez plays for Nebraska, a program that I know first hand has a fan base that will kill for it’s team. Nebraska overall garners more respect than Boise State even if Martinez isn’t as statistically impressive as Moore.

5.       (DH) Kellen Moore

So, back to my explanation (rant) about Kellen Moore, were it up to me I’d give Moore the Heisman because he is one of the best QB’s in the college game and is thrilling when the game is on the line (Moore’s bomb to Titus Young was a thing of beauty and you’re missing out if you haven’t seen it) But as I noted earlier, Moore gets very little respect from the establishment. Moore made the final list last year and I believe he’ll make it again this year because he is indeed that good. But he won’t win the Heisman because a quarterback from a more recognized conference and a more recognized program will end up winning it.

6.       (DH) Marcus Lattimore

My views on Lattimore haven’t changed since last issue, he’s an incredible even freakish talent. Lattimore is a dangerous combination of speed, vision and strength and had an incredible season last year before South Carolina was chopped down by Cam Newton and the Auburn Tigers. Between Lattimore and his team mate Alshon Jeffery, who will be an all American wide receiver this year, the college world should tremble

Sunday, July 3, 2011

My Thoughts on Terrelle Pryor

Glad To Be Back

So it’s good to be writing again because there’s really nothing interesting or exciting to explain why I haven’t been writing. Basically I drew up all the question for the offseason questions and then I graduated and they took my laptop (from which I rescued all of my precious work) and then I embarked on what has essentially been a solid month of nothing but weight room and grad parties. Moral of the story: Writing is easy but finding the time and drive to finish an article after 3-4 hours of working out and the fact that Spongebob (or the sponge themed cartoon of your choice) is on for 3 straight hours is difficult. But now I’m back so let’s delve into what happened while I was gone.

Pryor Going Pro

Terrelle Pryor, former QB of The Ohio State University, has declared for the Supplemental draft scheduled to be held whenever the hell the league feels like it. What has followed and preceded Pryor’s abrupt declaration has triggered a tidal wave of thoughts, comments and people learning that there is actually something called the Supplemental draft. You see the Supplemental draft is rarely a place to find an awe inspiring athlete like Pryor and typically the success rate on Supplemental picks is pretty low. So what’s Pryor got going for him since he was forced to flee Ohio State due to NCAA probes regarding off field issues including free tattoos and cars?

The Pros: Pryor is a remarkable talent, plain and simple. Pryor stands 6’6” with a fluid running style that once prompted a journalist to say “He doesn’t so much run as he glides over the field”. Pryor runs a 4.5 and with his tall stature has attracted interest as a receiver at the next level. Why not QB, the position he has played for years at the high school and college level? Well that brings us to Pryor’s drawbacks.

The Cons: Pryor is not the most accomplished of passers, he owns a quirky throwing motion that all too often drives balls into the turf and his arm strength isn’t top of the line either. Pryor’s main strength is improvising on the run, his gliding run allowing him to buy time to spy an open receiver and chuck the ball in his general direction. But the NFL game for QB’s is different than the one that Pryor experienced in college. In the NFL quarterback’s whose main asset is their legs don’t win championships (Michael Vick prior to 2010, Vince Young), quarterback’s whose mechanics and arm strength allow them to rely on those two things have (Manning, Brady, Brees). Note that these top of the line QB’s, main stays in any conversation about the best in the game, are not at all noted for their rushing abilities but for their pocket presence.

My Opinion: Pryor doesn’t seem to have the intangibles to play QB at a high level in the NFL. At the end of the day Pryor is an athlete who plays quarterback, not the other way around and playing him at QB seems like a risk most teams shouldn’t take. However Pryor’s potential as a receiver intrigues me, he’s got the height, speed and hands to be a great red zone target. The league really can’t seem to get enough of tall targets so Pryor has great potential there that I would say is worth looking into for most teams in the Round 4-5 range.

Teams of Interest:

Rams (Receiver): The Rams have their quarterback of the future in the phenomenal Sam Bradford, the Rams are also in possession of a rare opportunity, the NFC West is weak, very weak. The starting QB situation is not settled with any one of their rivals. The Rams have an opportunity for dominance of their division and a guaranteed home game if they can put a lot of room between themselves and the rest of the NFC Worst. A big step in the right direction would be to snag Bradford a blue chip target.

Pryor could be the answer to Bradford and his OC Josh McDaniels’ prayers. McDaniels however much of an epic fail he may have been as a head coach has proven how dangerous his system can be with one unreal target and a great QB. You want proof? You remember the year the Patriots almost went undefeated, broke several passing records between Tom Brady and Randy Moss? That had a ton to do with McDaniels’ system. Some might argue that Brady’s precision and Moss’ freakish abilities would have made it a productive season regardless but McDaniels has also done stunning work between Kyle Orton and Brandon Lloyd.

Browns (Receiver): I’m getting on my soap box for this one, some people think this is a good pick for the Browns as a QB based pick. I disagree with this on quite a few different levels: historical, statistical and just plain common sense. Also I’m a huge Texas fan and McCoy was awesome back in college.

McCoy showed a lot of potential as a rookie and he did so in the very worst of circumstances. Don’t believe me? Ok let’s play a little game of “Hypothetical matchups” if you were a rookie quarterback which defense would you start against? If you answered Pittsburgh then New Orleans then New England followed by the New York Jets, congratulations you are a braver man than I. Was this me just listing off random teams? Nope those were McCoy’s starts to begin his career. Sound like fun? No, no it does not. McCoy was supposed to be holding a clipboard through each and every single one of those games and yet he led and actually beat the Saints and Patriots in back to back games before losing in overtime to the Jets who were at that time on hot streak behind Mark Sanchez and an inexplicable string of awe inspiring late game heroics. Pretty damn impressive for a short guy. A knock that’s been had on McCoy is his lack of arm strength and how he won’t be able to handle the strong Cleveland winds and this was the cause of his many interceptions in the final weeks of the season. Because it couldn’t have possibly had something to do with the fact that McCoy was going against two of the scariest defenses in the league. It also couldn’t have had something to do with Eric Mangini’s constrictive play calling and general ineptitude at anything. But also Pryor’s arm strength isn’t great and he’d have the exact same criticism leveled against him. Pryor’s real advantage over McCoy is his scrambling prowess (an area McCoy is actually solid in) but Pryor’s scrambling is just unnecessary within the personnel that Cleveland has. Cleveland has one of the best offensive lines in the league anchored by Joe Thomas who in my opinion is the best left tackle in the league. The pocket is there and there’s really no need for him to scramble.

That was the statistical and common sense (Or at least part of it) so on to the historical which I’ve been looking forward to. In 1989 the Dallas Cowboys selected Troy Aikman of UCLA with the first overall pick in the draft, later that same year at the behest of coach Jimmy Johnson the Cowboys drafted Steve Walsh of Miami with their first pick in the supplemental draft. Both Aikman and Walsh played QB and for the next couple of years both had to spend their time looking over their shoulder for the other and it didn’t allow for the Cowboys to settle on a QB. Granted Johnson was engaged in blatant favoritism to many of his former players (Johnson coached at Miami) but the Walsh pick was the worst. In my opinion the Browns selecting Pryor is similar in that the heir apparent, McCoy now has to worry about being usurped from his starting spot for reason that are not entirely within his control.

To wrap up, Pryor can be of tremendous value to the Browns as a receiver as right now McCoy has few people to throw to the most recognizable of which is Mohammed Massaquoi. No offense intended but the majority of people only know of Massaquoi as “That receiver they show getting decked by James Harrison whenever ESPN wants to talk about violent hits.” While the addition of Greg Little shows promise McCoy certainly won’t complain about another tall receiver.

Bears (Receiver): Like I said the league likes tall receivers and Pryor could make a wonderful target for a team in search of a clear cut No.1, granted it would take Pryor time to adjust to some of the ins and outs of his new position but his potential can’t really be ignored. I’d expand more on this but I’ve covered the topic at length in my earlier article about the Bears and by now this article is way longer than I intended.

Redskins (QB) (Receiver): Things are a mess over in DC, take that statement as you will but in this case the Redskins are in need of, well pretty much everything. If they could find a scouting report saying that Pryor is capable of playing guard, center and QB all at the same time then the Skins are in business. Pryor’s athleticism will be definite draw to a team that is about to start a winless QB and who’s offensive line almost necessitates that the QB be ready to take off for his life. Meanwhile Pryor’s potential as a wideout adds a playmaker to a team with two good tight ends and one legit receiver.

Bills (QB) (Receiver): And so we come to the last of the teams of interest, the Bills seem content with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback but he can’t last forever and the Bills are going to need a franchise QB if they would ever like to see anything besides the basement of the AFC East. Is Pryor their guy? It’s possible, Chan Gailey’s offense favors the mobile which lead to draft day speculation that Newton would not make it past the Bills. The Bills need some excitement in their game and Pryor needs a team. Pryor could also provide another playmaking option opposite the rising star of Stevie Johnson.s