Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Bold moves and average news

So nothing major to report today, just fancy going through some of the news that's been floating about on yonder internet plus anything else that catches my eye: -- Tim Tebow is reportedly going to miss the QB drills at the combine and instead he's working on his throwing motion. I admire the kid for wanting to put the work in that's asked of him. I think his ethic and his dedication is going to stand him in good stead in the NFL and you get the sense he's going to be a great leader, setting an example for others to follow. What concerns me is that in changing his throwing motion you're taking him out his natural rhythm. Yes you make his release faster, but is that going to adversly affect the timing of his throws? Maybe something to keep an eye on. -- LaDanian Tomlinson has been released by the Chargers. Many question whether LT still has the explosiveness in his legs to compete in the NFL. Though much has been said already about his leadership qualities and him being a standup guy, which is good for young players, everyone still believes he's going to be nothing more than a role player, just coming in for the odd down and change of pace. Personally I disagree. We saw this with Larry Johnson when he switched from the Chiefs to the Bengals. Suddenly he went from a terrible yards per carry to a much better showing and I think a lot of this was down to the Bengals more run friendly offense. The reality is that the Chargers don't run much and LT didn't get the carries. Couple that with their use of LT as mainly a short yardage and goal line type player and I think you have a good reason why LT's numbers came up short. I just think those damn statistics people are doing him no favours and whoever gets their hands on LT (come on San Fran') will get a valuable tandem player to go with their premier rusher. -- Enter Brian Westbrook, another RB who finds himself on the open market. Personally I don't get it. If you're Andy Reid, then you put LeSean McCoy in as #1 and you use Westbrook as your backup. That said it's Andy Reid and we all know Andy is a little rush adverse. So the market doesn't look all that tempting for Westbrook due to his concussions but honestly, I think someone is about to get a steal. Westbrook can run but even better, he can catch! Given the amount of time he's been off the field now he should be well recovered and if he keeps himself in top shape, look for him to make a surprising impact next year. -- Darren Sharper will NOT be tagged by the New Orleans Saints this off season. He seemed stunned by this decision while talking to the press, but at a guess I'd say the Saints went back and watched the film, realised that Tracey Porter and Jabari Greer did all his work for him and decided "na, not worth the exorbitant fee". Nice move by the Saints. But if they have a slump this season it'll all be blamed, incorrectly, on letting Sharper go. I can almost smell the bulls%$t bubbling already. -- For anyone that's interested, Mike Mayock, the NFL networks draft guru has done a series of videos explaining what all the main drills are at the combine and what coaches and scouts are looking for. It's a well put together series of clips and Mayock does a sound job with the explanations. If you're an experienced coach or football guy you may not find much value in it, but I always find that going back and reviewing things that look basic sometimes throws up ideas if nothing else. Worth a look I think. -- Speaking of the draft, both the Rams and the Lions are looking to dump their first round picks. No doubt there will be much debate but I think they don't really have anything to lose. If they pick high they get a great DT (either Suh or McCoy). If they can sell, they can get a player or two who gives them immediate help and they get extra picks to work with on rebuilding. Maybe they'd have been better off doing this last year, but hey. Supposedly the forerunner for the Rams pick is Tampa with talk of Josh Johnson going to St. Louis as well as the Bucs' first and third round picks. I think to get Suh or McCoy, that's a pretty good move and the Rams will get good service out of Johnson who's mainly impressed (me at least) in the brief flashes that we've seen of him. The Eagles could also been in with a shout, trading off Vick and some picks if they wanted. It's still possible that the Patriots might even make a move, if Belichick decides to take a gamble on an expensive rookie instead of Peppers. Me personally, I'd be going to my owner cap in hand requesting cash for a bold move; stealing both of the first two picks. Why the crazy trade? Suh and McCoy are both awesome tackles. What impresses me most when I watch them is their speed out of their stance, their great use of footwork and hands to get by O-linemen and their great instincts. Both of these guys love being around the ball and they work hard to make it happen. What you have is a chance to pick up two young guys who can make a difference on your D for years to come. So how do you go about it? First you have to be willing (and able) to ship a QB to the Rams and a defensive player, probably a tackle or a defensive back to the Lions. If I was Andy Reid of the Eagles I'd give Donovan McNabb to the Rams and Asante Samuel to the Lions. This may just be personal bias but I think McNabb is getting on a bit now and I think both Vick and Kolb give you more options offensively. I still think Vick can pass well and has a great motor when you need it and Kolb is the true starter in waiting. As for Samuel, yes he gives you picks, but at what cost? He gets beaten too easily by double moves, I question his effort at times and he is almost a non-factor in the running game. You're also going to have to give up your first round pick from this year and 2011. Whoever gets the 2011 pick will probably also want added compensation lower down in this years draft. For me, it's worth it. It's a brave move and if things don't work out, you look like an idiot, but I think this a calculated risk and I'd be more than willing to take. If I was the Panthers (hate 'em) I'd seriously consider this, as Peppers leaving puts a dent in your pass rush but also leaves some salary space open for the move. Trade a QB to the Rams (they have Delhomme and then 3 guys they'd hope to bring back from free agency) and find someone the Lions want (god knows who) and hey presto, new and improved pass rush plus run stopping capability. Well, least that's what I'd do. But then I can be a bit nuts at times.

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