2013 NFL: What We Know (The Training Camp Edition)
As training camps are set to open league-wide this week, it is time to ramp up the NFL column after a six month hiatus. As always, there is something going on in the NFL; although much of it has to do with breakin’ the law, like Judas Priest (insert Beavis and Butthead Voice here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VBZClrxDLQ), than anything football related. And since there hasn’t been an exhibition game — the annual Hall of Fame Game will be played two weekends from now, on August 4, featuring the Miami Dolphins and Dallas Cowboys — or even a single practice yet, most of this edition of “What We Know” will consist of signings, trades and offseason news in preparation for next weekend’s training camps.
WHAT WE KNOW
— With the Packers being the only game in town for Green Bay fans, they sure know how to tailgate and prepare for an upcoming season, don’t they? (Link: http://www.packerpedia.com/offseasonv2.html)
— When you are a Seahawks fan nowadays, you brace yourself in hopes that the next headline involving the Seabags isn’t another player receiving a suspension for PED usage.
— Drew Brees wants an explanation as to why the Saints have let two of his best pass protectors go in back to back offseasons.
— We know the Jets are the biggest circus act in the NFL, but can things be any worse when a player goes on record saying one thing and the head coach has no idea that such a thing took place within the locker room?
— Victor Cruz thinks he’s “underpaid” at $45 million. What young Vic fails to remember is that he could have easily been changing tires at the local Aamco in Hackensack for less than $45 THOUSAND if not for that one preseason game in 2010, and Steve Smith’s tomfoolery.
— Bob Kraft expects people to buy his story that he was betrayed and surprised by the actions of Aaron Hernandez, when he has employed a rogue coach with a complete disregard for rules and convention for nearly 15 years. Right, Bob.
— Calling the Steelers “broke” is like calling Dr. Dre “irrelevant” because he never dropped “Detox.”
— The Miami Dolphins are now favorites to win the AFC East. However, they still have to play the games.
— The Buffalo Bills love to psych themselves into believing that their offseason moves put them over the top. Each time, they finish 6-10 or 7-9.
— The Cleveland Browns are a mess. No one blinks.
— Reggie Bush says the Lions will have the best offense in the NFL. Maybe recently retired LT Jeff Backus was right when he uttered the “We’re making strides” line 1,376 times during his Lions career.
— Roddy White is running his mouth like a complete idiot. YAWN.
— Where are the people who said that Chris Johnson was better than Adrian Peterson?
— Over/Under three regular season games before the “Jaguars to Los Angeles” rumors ramp up this season?
— Alex Smith will either cement his status as an efficient QB this season, or be proven to have been a fluke in 2011. He certainly has weapons in Jamaal Charles and Dwayne Bowe, along with Tony Moeaki.
— People say Eli Manning is overrated. ALL Giants fans yawn in unison.
— Washington fans think the 2012 season was a sign of things to come, but there are 17 games of film on the Skins and their offense from last year. If Kyle Shanahan does not adjust, the Skins will be right back in the cellar where they’ve resided for most of the past 20 years.
— Dallas owner Jerry Jones say that the Cowboys are favorites to win the NFC East. Not a soul surprised.
— Chip Kelly will definitely have a great opportunity to prove whether his offense is suited for the NFL. He has speed across the board. The question is, what will his defense do? They don’t have anyone who scares any offensive coordinator anyplace on their defensive roster. And that’s including Mr. September, Trent Cole.
— Chargers’ QB Philip Rivers says his best years are ahead of him. After turning the ball over more than every QB in the NFL not named Mark Sanchez over the past two seasons, it is difficult to take his statements seriously.
— Most people did not like Greg Schiano‘s tactics at the ends of games last season, but on a personal note, he used to bring his teams to our church in central Jersey quite regularly and he is a good guy/good coach. The Bucs have talent stacked galore. Do not be surprised if the Bucs win the NFC South.
— Because as we know, the Falcons usually follow up one of their fluky 13-3 seasons with a “strong” 8-8 finish, which is quite literally a real possibility in 2013.
— The Panthers have been mired in purgatory since drafting QB Cam Newton, this is put up or shut up time for Newton.
— The Cincinnati Bengals have not done much to improve their offense. Their defense is certainly good enough — although MLB Rey Maualuga will continue to be a liability in pass coverage.
— There are hyenas more sane than Titus Young, Sr.
— Doofus of the Summer awards go to Mike Goodson and Dan Connor. Can a professional athlete with information and resources galore be anymore ignorant than these two (excluding batshit-crazy Young, Sr.?)
— Aaron Hernandez is excluded from that question as well, because his goal in life was not to become an all-time great tight end, but rather live out the plot line in “Goodfellas.” He has to realize that copying Tommy D. in real life comes with a price: Tommy D. got shot in the head just as he thought he was being “made”, forgetting that he left a trail of destruction that eventually caught up with him and caused him to be killed.
— At least Hernandez’s life is intact. No word on the condition of his anus in about 5 years. Pause.
— Several players were injured during the Football Giants‘ OTAs. Move on, nothing to see here.
— Millions of fingers are crossed hoping that no key players are injured during training camps.
— The Arizona Cardinals have changed general managers, head coaches, personnel chiefs, starting QBs, defensive coordinators, and will yet be the same: the head coach will turn out to have been better elsewhere, the QB stinks, the defensive coordinator manned a unit that surrendered nearly 35 points per game in his previous stop, and despite having loads of talent on defense, he will find a way to mismanage it.
— Darnell Dockett may truly organize a mutiny as he damn near did last season.
— Do not be surprised if the San Francisco 49ers miss the playoffs altogether in 2013. They have been “figured out.”
— Will the Ravens be the team that breaks the schnide of teams falling short in a Super Bowl repeat? Although they lost several key players, the best GM in the NFL stealthily restocked the roster through the draft and shrewd, if not subliminal, offseason signings.
— The Rams are going to be the team that battles the Seabags for NFC West supremacy, not the 49ers.
— The Tennessee Titans are like a rudderless ship. They don’t know where they’re going. We don’t know. No one knows.
— If the Denver Broncos do not get it done this season, heads will roll. The talk is that Peyton Manning is about as close to his old self as he ever will be at age 37.
— The Houston Texans take a step back (Matt Schaub is still their QB, you know…) it is the Indianapolis Colts’ year to shine.
— The Bears are still who we thought they were. They poach another team’s castoff players every year, and it never works.
— Do I even need to waste space on what could be the worst team in the NFL this season, the Oakland Raiders? Good. I won’t.