Discussion in 'The Longest Yard' started by RynoAid, Aug 14, 2012.
Post them up for your team... be thorough.. let's see what you got !!!
Honestly? I would be in shock and awe if the Colts Rating was above 73. We cut a majority(90%) of the O(from 2010. No one counts 2011 because there was no O) and have a busted D. Besides Luck, Wayne, and Collie there is no proven personnel on the O side of the ball.(Luck isn't proven entirely but looks solid so far) We lost 60% of our weak O-line=No protection likely for Luck. On D we have no CB beyond Powers. We moved our Pro-Bowl DE's to OLB(DUMB!) and have 1 safety and a very sub-par D-line. My rating is a 68. We will see what Madden says.
Bueller?... this is a requirement.
he took the day off. I can do all the teams if you want! Compare mine to Maddens.
Denver Broncos Team Preview
We all know who is the starting QB heading into the pre-season and Week one. THE Peyton Manning. He's looking back to his normal self but what everyone wants to see is if he can take a hit. That will come eventually but hopefully the guy gets through a couple games before he takes a hard knock. The WR core looks promising. 3rd year WR D. Thomas looks to have an outstanding year with Manning under center. Just a SMALL change from Jesus Chr...I mean Tim Tebow calling shots. Thomas is excited and so is his mate Eric Decker. Decker is looking to be the underneath receiver while Thomas is going to stretch the D out a bit. Also don't forget about Stokely who is reuinited with his boy Peyton from years ago. Not sure how the OLine will look yet, will have to wait and see. Might be something we look tothe draft for or build up through the draft. I really like the TEs Dressen and Tamme. I think Tamme will be the starter with Dressen coming in on 2 TE sets. I played with Tamme last year in Madden and he looked great. Hopefully if he sees the ball a lot the progression system will let him grow into one of Mannings favorite targets. Finally on offense we have the HBs. Willis Mcgahee will be the starter with rookie Ronnie Hillman from SD State looking to fight for the starting job after a few weeks of action. Hillman is the future in the backfield for this franchise and hopefully he has a good rookie campaign in 2012.
Defense: Highlighting the front line we have DE Evlis Dumervilwho had 26.5 sacks in the last 2 seasons, he is primed for another great outing this year. Stars of the LBs are no strangers in Von Miller and DJ Williams. These guys are straight ballers and they're coming to a QB near you. Finally veteran standout Champ Bailey will be leading the DBs at the CB position. Champ's still a lockdown corner but doesn't have many years ahead of him. CB Tracy Porter will play opposite of Bailey and does have some upside. He's got good experience but still young enough to step up and take Champs spot when it comes time. Not sure about safeties but we have veteran Mike Adams and youngster Rahim Moore who's got a 6'1 frame to compliment him. We will see what these two have got once preseason hits and go from there.
All in all, the biggest holes coach nellycuz can see at this point is the Oline possibly. But that could change or maybe nellycuz doesn't know his team well enough to make that prediction. Can't wait till camp.
PREDICTION - Broncos go 9-7 and win a wildcard spot in the AFC. 3
4 Pro-bowlers in QB Manning, LB Von Miller, DE Elvis Dumervil and WR Demaryius Thomas
***Note predictions are completely biased****
Good Luck to all in 2012!!!
2012 DETROIT LIONS TEAM PREVIEW
The Lions had one of the best passing attacks in 2011, with starting quarterback Mathew Stafford reaching 5000 yards, passing to the likes of Calvin Johnson, Titus Young, Nate Burleson, and Brandon Pettigrew. Although they bring in another new toy for Stafford in Ryan Broyles, coach Haggard has said that he will look to bring more balance to the team, running the ball with a 3 headed monster of Kevin Smith, Jahvid Best and Mikel LeShoure. It's pretty well known that Haggard likes to pound the rock, but with so much talent in the passing game, it remains to be seen if he'll be able to stick to his usual offensive gameplan.
The Lions can boast the best front 4 in all of football, with Kyle Vanden Bosch, Corey Williams, Cliff Avril, and Ndamukong Suh. They also have a few good choices to rotate in and keep the big men fresh in Sammie Williams, Nick Fairley and Willie Young. Motown is also rock solid at linebacker, with starters Stephen Tulloch, DeAndre Levy, and Justin Durant all having the speed and athleticism to make plays. The secondary is the weak spot, although free safety Louis Delmas is on the verge of becoming a superstar, the Lions could use upgrades at both corner spots and strong safety.
2012-2013 Cleveland Browns Team Preview The Cleveland Browns enter a new era under Coach dj illmatic 23. Ushering in this era, or should we say rushing in this era, will be the third overall pick in the draft HB Trent Richardson. Illmatic has made it known to everyone that he plans on feeding Richardson a steady dose of the rock, and who can blame him. Richardson has the potential to be an elite NFL back. He is extremely powerful, compact, and quick. Richardson can carry between the tackles, has the speed to get around the corner, the hands to be a threat in the passing game, and is a great blocker. Richardson also benefits from running behind a good offensive line led by Pro Bowlers LT Joe Thomas and C Alex Mack. For Richardson to truly be succesful however, he will need fellow rookie, QB Brandon Weeden to keep defenses honest. Weeden has a much more powerful arm than the man he is replacing, QB Colt McCoy. The Browns hope this will help them stretch the field and allow Richardson to run against seven man fronts. Weeden will look to WR Greg Little to make plays for him in the passing game. Cleveland also hopes WR Josh Gordon, who they selected in the supplemental draft, is able to make the roster and contribute to the team. The player that could have the biggest impact on the Browns' receiveng corps is WR Travis Benjamin, a rookie from Miami, and not for any catches he makes. Cleveland is planning on making Benjamin their return specialist, which will allow WR Josh Cribbs to focus on his receiving duties. The Browns hope Cribbs can bring the same explosiveness to their passing game he brought to their return game. While the Browns are relatively certain of their plans on offense, the defense is much more of a question. Like the offense, the success of the front four will rely on a rookie, DT John Hughes out of Cincinnati. At 6'2" 320 pounds, Hughes has the physical pressence to stuff the middle. What he will have to prove is that he can do it on the field. The linebacking corps will be led by MLB D'Qwell Jackson. Jackson is coming off a career high 158 tackles and 3.5 sacks last season. The Browns are also hoping rookie LB Emmanuel Acho out of Texas will step up and provide some speed to the unit. If he can, veteran LB Scott Fujitta could be moved. In the secondary, Cleveland has two very capable corners in Joe Haden and Sheldon Brown. The play of relatively unknown safties Eric Hagg and T.J. Ward will be a big key to the success or failure of the Browns this season. When asked to make a prediction on his team's record this season, coach Illmatic asked reporters, "for what? No matter what I predict, we still have to go out there and play the games. We'll go out there and try to win every game we play, and we'll try to make the playoffs. The number of games I tell you we'll win now means nothing. All that matters is how many you actually won come January. We are probably in the toughest division in football. The Steelers, Ravens, and Bengals made the playoffs last season. They're talented football teams. All I want is to remain healthy, and to take a shot with the guys we have. We'll see how it plays out.
2012 Oakland Raiders Preview
The Oakland Raiders offensive side of the ball is coming off an up and down 2011 season with injuries to QB, RB, and WR positions. Finishing 8-8 after a 7-4 start, the loss of starting QB Jason Campbell, RB Darren Mcfadden, and injuries to Jacody Ford, Denarious More, and DHB during various stretches made it hard to continue an offensive flow. Oakland swung a trade deadline deal to bring in former pro bowler and Carson Palmer to take over Jason Campbell. While showing flashes of his abilities, his lack of offseason and lack of knowledge of the offensive system showed as the Raiders faded down the stretch to miss the playoffs.
The 2012 season looks to be a different story as Carson Palmer will have a full offseason and the return of the oft injured Darren Mcfadden could vault the Raiders offense to one of the top offenses in the league. Denarious Moore returns for his 2nd season after a breakout rookie season as a 4th rd draft pick, include DHB who showed massive improvement last year and the return of Jacoby Ford, the Raiders offensive can be one of the most explosive in the league.
Most of the offensive line returns, but with some adjustments, gone is Satele and in is 2nd year player little Wiz to take over the center position. Bringing Knapp as the offensive coordinator and installing the power-o zone blocking scheme, he brought in a few of his Texan players to improve the offensive protection.
The Raiders offense if healthy, could be one of the most potent in the league if Palmer can show flashes of what he did with the Bengals and if Mcfadden can stay healthy for most of the seasons. With a full off season this year, playoffs could be in the horizon after missing the playoffs since 2002.
With the new coaching staff coming in, the Raiders also made a change at the Defensive Coordinator position bringing in Tarver. No more of the 4 man rush and straight man to man, Tarver will install a multiple scheme defensive utilizing both the 4-3 and the 3-4. The Raiders struggled in 2011 to stop the run and pretty much stop the pass, essentially, the defensive was terrible ranked in the bottom five. With pretty much the same front 7 including Wheeler, the Raiders look to improve their run defense with more blitzing and discipline gap play. In addition, cutting down the penalties is a major goal as well, especially the mental mistakes like going off side or late hits. The secondary has gone a major overhaul as Routt and Chris Johnson have been dumped by the Raiders, and veterans Spencer and Bartell coming in to take over the starting job. DVD and Chekwa coming off so so rookie years will fill in as backup and in the slot. Key to the defense is the play off newly re-signed Tyvon Branch who brings toughness in the run game and also good coverage skills. Michael Huff looks to improve form an injury filled 2011 and hopefully be the ball-hawk he was drafted to be back in 2006.
In all, if the Raiders can stay healthy on offense, they will put up points as they have done the last two years. The problem has always been the defensive side of the ball and new Head Coach Dennis Allen and D-Coord Tarver look to install a brand new scheme to help the Raiders defense reach their potential. It is going to be fun year in Oakland in a very competitive AFC West.
2012 Tennessee Titans Preview The Tennessee Titans come into the 2012 season riding high off the 9-7 finish from last season. With the above.500 finish the Titans still missed the playoffs. With the key additions of Kameron Wimbley and Steve Hutchinson viafree agency, the Titans are hoping this will be enough to give that extra boost to reach the postseason. The big question mark facing the Titans entering the 2012 season is who will be the starting the Quarterback? Matt Hasselback comes off a 2011 season where he threw for more than 3,500 yards but only threw 4more td's than interceptions. Hasselback however, provides leadership and playoff experience that the Titanswill need to reach the postseason. Then there is Jake Locker, high draft pick out of Washington who did not get many opportunities last year as arookie. Locker passed for 542 yards in limited action last season. Locker does provide that running dimension thatveteran Hasselback lacks. Either way the Titans go look for the team to still rely on CJ 2K who by most experts opinion had a down seasonlast year. He did rush for over 1,000 yards but had only 4 td's on the ground. If the Titans want to reachthe postseason or compete with the Texans in the division Johnson will have to have 10 + td's on the ground this year. Defensively look for the Titans to continue to play aggressively and be one of the leagues bestwithout any of leagues top names.
2012 San Francisco 49ers Team Preview
The 49ers are coming off one of their best seasons ever going 13-3 and coach Mackie is looking to improve on what has made this team so successful. One of thosebeing the absolutely incredible run stop defense the 49ers have been able to create behind their leader and All Star Linebacker, Patrick Willis. Since the 49ers are in a division with such strong running games, it is imperative that we not only mimic what we did a year ago but take it to another level. The 49ers did everything they needed to do in the off season on the defensive side of the ball keeping their players that helped lead to their success and we are extremely excited to see the young talent of this squad continue to develop such as Navarro Bowman, Aldon Smith, and even Dashon Goldson. After such a successful season there doesn't seem to be many question marks surrounding the defense of this team but there are plenty of questions marks on the other side of the ball.
Alex Smith, the former #1 overall pick, is coming off of his best season in his entire career Passing for over 3000 yards and only throwing 5 Interceptions! Could he have finally gotten out of his slump and be a consistent QB in this league? The question remains to be answered but on top of his performance he had during the regular season he silenced even more critics by being able to handle the pressure against the Saints for a HUGE win in the playoffs that he played a big role in. The 49ers are confident that Alex Smith will continue to become a successful quarterback in this league especially with the new addition of Randy Moss on the squad. He should help Alex have more options than just Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree (on a good day.) The 49ers have the utmost confidence in Alex after a year like that; although we have a bigger reason why we are so confident than just his decent season of throwing.
Frank Gore is coming off of a great year of running with 1200 yards and 8 touchdowns to go along with his great season of running. The key to Alex's success is this guy right here, as long as Frank can keep himself healthy I have no doubt in my mind that the offense will be able to get enough things done to have a very successful season and hopefully make a playoff year 2 years in a row.
All in all the 49ers look like a very stellar and exciting squad to be apart of, of course there are some things I would like to change a little on the offensive side but the defensive plus side is too much to let it bother me. I can foresee my 49ers squad having a 11-5/12-4 season and hopefully clinching the playoffs but this team has so much talent that if somehow I shit the bed in my first season with them there isn't much to improve so I'm excited to get it going.
for some reason my Alex Smith and Patrick Willis pictures won't show up
Coming off a pitiful season in which only 2 wins were achieved, Jim Irsay decided to clean house. First off was the Pollians, who you could say there only fault was not finding a backup for Manning, then Jim Caldwell got axed after 1 year as HC. Then he released Manning, Addai, Bullitt, Clark, Brackett, several others, and the ever helpful Curtis Painter quickly out the door. So what now? Well first Jim brought in new head coach, Josh Foster. Then came his new O coordinator from Pittsburg Bruce Arians. Defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano(a strong candidate for the HC position) implementing the 3-4(where Jerry Hughes is thriving). So who does that leave to lead when all others are gone? The new HC first decision!
The team will rest on this young man’s shoulders in these rebuilding years. With a WR core like Wayne, Collie, and a couple youngsters it may take a while. We will see what Coach Foster has in store for this young QB and his destiny as a Colt.
Now on D with Pagano changing the Colts from a Tampa 2 to the 3-4 that means our two pillars become LB’s
Jerraud Powers is primed for a breakout year and Antione Bethea is fixing to establish his self as one of the best FS in the league. A lot will be determined by this in-experienced younger LB core consisting of Moise Fokou and Greg Lloyd. It will be in interesting year for these Colts. The new HC has a lot on his plate. How will he handle it? Will he crack under pressure or cement his legacy?
BUILD THE MONSTER
The Colts young receiving core looked pretty decent last night vs the Steelers.....Looks like you will have some speed--
Yea. TY Hilton Dropin that wide open TD and turned it into a Pick
Not so sure that was a TD but yea that was bad....
He beat the safty and Troy was up on wayne. There was no one until he bobbled it.
The 2012 Cincinnati Bengals The Bengals come into 2012 with something to prove. Many analysts claim that the 2011 season which seen the Bengals win many more games than most people thought, then make the playoffs as a Wildcard team was a fluke. The Bengals have not made the playoffs in consecutive years since 1981-1982, and the 2012 Bengals are here to erase that stat. OffenseThe offense will be headlined once again by 2nd year QB Andy Dalton and 2nd year WR A.J. Green. This combo gave defenses fits last year. The tandem has the benefit of a full off season this year, a opportunity that was not afforded to them last year on account of the player lockout. If these two guys can continue to mature and progress look for this to be one of the premier QB / WR tandems in the NFL. Although A.J. Green has shown that he has what it takes, the Bengals lacked depth at the No. 2 receiver spot for all the 2011 season and were in desperate need to find a solid No. 2. The Bengals addressed this need in the draft by using their 3rd pick on Rutgers WR Mohammad Sanu. Sanu is known as a possession type receiver with excellent hands and route running ability, which is exactly what the Bengals were needing. Also in contention for the No.2 spot is Brandon Tate. Tate is known primarily as a kickoff / punt return specialist but has improved as of late as a WR and is in position to impress coaches. Lastly being considered at the No. 2 spot is Armon Binns, another possession type receiver that has impressed coaches throughout training camp. At RB the Bengals have acquired Benjarvus Green-Ellis through free agency. With the astounding fact that in his entire career he has yet to cough up the ball on a fumble, his red zone prowess, and his reputation as a great locker room presence, it is hard to not believe that the Bengals have upgraded from Cedric Benson, which became a locker room discouragement with a "me me me" attitude during the late season in 2011. With one of their two first round picks, the Bengals opted to shore up their offensive line with guard Kevin Zeitler. DefenseDefensively the Bengals hope to repeat their feats of last season. The defense claimed the No.1 spot in the NFL for multiple weeks last season, and that without their top CB Leon Hall in the lineup. Depth has been added to the defensive backs with the addition of 1st round selection Dre Kirkpatrick and free agent Terrance Newman. At the LB position the Bengals will once again look to Rey Maulaga to captain the squad. Maulaga was quite hit and miss with his play last year, and the Bengals will need him to be the impact player that he CAN be in order to shut down talented running teams such as Baltimore and the Browns with their new addition of Trent Richardson. Also at LB the Bengals have added the controversial Vontaze Burfict. While he was considered a 1st round draft pick by most at one time, due to many factors he was snubbed at the draft. The Bengals (who are notorious for taking chances on problem guys) picked him up as an undrafted free agent and thus far in training camp and preseason he has shown that he deserves to be on an NFL roster. With time and work, I think that he will eventually be a starter. The defensive line is looking stout once again, headed by future stars like Carlos Dunlap and big Geno Atkins.
I know nothing of the Rams these days. Since they moved from LA I have lost most interest in them. Im trying to revive my old feelings for the team. So I found this little ditty that explains how good the Rams will be in 2012.
Why Your Team Sucks 2012: St. Louis Rams
1. The Rams are the WNBA team of the NFL.
Outside of the Staph Infection R&D Lab that is the Cleveland Browns, there isn't a worse team in football at keeping players healthy than the Rams. A Rams player is 50% more likely than any other NFL player to break his arm WHILE tearing his ACL. They didn't need a new coach. They needed a fucking trainer.
Because Sam Bradford could very well die this season. I think it's very nice that the Rams managed to fleece Dan Snyder and the Shanahans for three first rounders. That's what the Redskins are there for. But the Rams had one of the shittiest o-lines in football last season, and they only spent one measly fifth round pick on a linemen in the draft. Bradford was sacked an average of three-and-a-half times a game last season, and the only thing the Rams did to fix the problem was sign center Scott Wells away from the Packers. That's not enough. By Week 6, Bradford will have his clavicle broken in fourteen different places and it'll be Kellen Clemens time. Because who the fuck is Bradford gonna throw to? Steve Smith? Steve Smith is a bucket of ass. And anyone who tells me that Lance Kendricks could be a sleeper at TE this season should be forced to drink hydrochloric acid. I've done the whole "draft Kendricks late because you think he's a sleeper" thing. It doesn't work. This is arguably the worst roster in football.
2. They still don't have a defensive coordinator.
Now that Greggggg Williams has been suspended for 500 years, who will help Rams pit crew chief Jeff Fisher craft bizarre Powerpoint slides that look like Whitlock's Twitter page? I think you Rams fans will be heartened to know that the answer is... like, whatever:
Fisher believes if the game plan is sound, it doesn't matter who makes the calls.
What's that? Organizing a sound chain of communication so that nothing gets fucked up come gameday? MEH. Unimportant. We'll just, like, figure it out and shit. I'm crazy excited for the Rams to take three defensive timeouts every first and third quarter.
3. They are the scourge of the Red Zone Channel.
There's nothing more depressing than watching the Red Zone Channel and being taken from the excitement of an intense NFC East matchup and dropped into the fucking funeral parlor of a Rams home game. None of those fans want to be at a Rams game. Those are people who were hoping to get into a Cardinals game that day so that they could clap lustily for the other team (so classy!) and eat nothing but the salt part of the giant pretzel. But they missed on tickets, and now they're stuck at the Junior Kingdome. You can hear the trace of guilt in Andrew Siciliano's voice when he says, "Let's take you to St. Louis," because he knows that you know that he's cutting to the Rams game because every other game happened to be breaking to commercial at the same time. I don't even need to look at the screen to know it's a Rams game. All I have to do is listen for Ron Pitts. If the Rams were contracted (or mercifully shipped back to Los Angeles), the Red Zone Channel would never have any lulls.
4. I saw the best years of Steven Jackson's life wasted.
Poor bastard. He'll be forced to touch the ball 40 times a game before falling apart Bluesmobile-style by midseason. I'm so sorry this happened to you, Steven. If it's any consolation, I hear that Bradford is quite the cutup in the team whirlpool.
There is a conspicuous feeling when you watch the Rams that their best days are now long behind them. They're on their fourth coach since Dick Vermeil was overthrown by Mike Martz, and 1999 seems decades away with each passing year. They're never gonna be that good again. Ever. They got three very nice years, and now it's all but forgotten. And I'd feel bad for St. Louis, except for the fact that St. Louis is a shitty town and you get what you deserve if you're dumb enough to hang out there. Even Matt Vasgersian knows that downtown St. Louis is a hole in the ground.
5. Hear it from Rams fans:
Long-time Rams fan here who has been to 80% of our games since they moved to STL. In the past 5 years, we have amassed a horribly putrid total of 15 wins, which is worse than any 5-year total in NFL history, including even the Matt Millen era Lions. All of this because the powers that be couldn't control their massive fucking egos back when things were going good. Since then, we have just made mistake after mistake in the draft (zero players from our '06 and '07 drafts remained on our roster by 2010), personnel moves ($34 million for Drew Bennett??) and coaching hires. Hopefully things will change with an actual proven GM-head coach combo but I'll believe it when I see it.Chris:
Point 1 - They are actively terrible. The Rams were not only the worst team in the league last year, they were comically non-competitive. The talent level in the NFL shouldn't ever be so one-sided that one team looks like an NFL team and the other looks like a collection of recently aborted fetuses.
Point 2 - The lame-duckery. Stupid fuckhead Florio makes it a personal point to turn any Rams-related news into a definite sign that they're on the next moving truck to LA. He's the worst, and any post drags me into the PFT message boards, home of the ever charming masses of racists and steakheads that populate that mosh pit of jackassery. Regardless of the fact that LA doesn't even have a shovel in the fucking dirt yet. I hate him.
Point 3 - Our owner's moustache. Pronounced Moo-Stash, Stanley Kroenke has a Wannstedt level lip fungus. Where we could have had Shahid Khan's beautiful, Iron-Sheikiness, instead, we get the watered down Ron Jeremy look.
Point 4 - The Edward Jones Dome. Outdated as soon as it was finished, the Ed (as we call it here) is dark and depressing. It can be stupid-fucking loud when the team puts out a tiny bit of effort, but the team has underperformed to the point of comedy for 5 years, and it's hard to cheer for terrible. The nachos are tasty, though.
2011 RECORD: 10-6 (2nd, NFC South)
LAST PLAYOFF APPEARANCE: 2011, lost to N.Y. Giants in NFC Wild Card
COACH (RECORD): Mike Smith (43-21 in four seasons)
OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR: Dirk Koetter (first season with Falcons)
DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR: Mike Nolan (first season with Falcons)
OFFENSIVE STAR: Matt Ryan, QB (4177 passing yards, 29 TD, 12 INT)
DEFENSIVE STAR: John Abraham, DE (35 tackles, 9.5 sacks, 4 forced fumbles)
2011 OFFENSIVE TEAM RANKS: 10th overall (17th rushing, 8th passing), 7th scoring (25.1 ppg)
2011 DEFENSIVE TEAM RANKS: 12th overall (6th rushing, 20th passing), 18th scoring (21.9 ppg)
KEY ADDITIONS: CB Asante Samuel (from Eagles), FB Lousaka Polite (from Patriots), OG Peter Konz (2nd Round, Wisconsin), S Chris Hope (from Titans)
KEY DEPARTURES: FB Ovie Mughelli (to Rams), MLB Curtis Lofton (to Saints), WR Eric Weems (to Bears), TE Reggie Kelly (free agent), CB Kelvin Hayden (to Bears), S James Sanders (to Cardinals)
QB: In case the point hadn't already been driven home, Ryan will clearly have a significant role in determining whether the Falcons wind up in this season's final game in New Orleans or somewhere shy of the Super Bowl. He logged career-bests in passing yards (4,177), touchdown throws (29), passing yards per game (261.1) and quarterback rating (92.2) in 2011 and enters this season with the same high-octane wideouts (Julio Jones and Roddy White) who helped make those numbers possible. Backing Ryan up are the same reserves as in 2011, 10-year veteran Chris Redman and fourth-year man John Parker Wilson. Redman got on the field in five games last season, completing 18-of-28 passes for 188 yards and an interception.
RB: Providing an encore to a 1,340-yard, 11-touchdown season is the task for feature back Michael Turner, who averaged 83.8 rushing yards per game and 4.5 yards per carry over the entire 2011 campaign, but logged more than 3.6 yards per carry just once in the final seven games. Smith is on record saying Turner's load will be lessened this year in favor of speedy 22-year-old Jacquizz Rodgers, who had 205 rushing yards and 21 catches in his first season after being selected in the fifth round of the 2011 draft. Jason Snelling is also back after logging 44 carries for 151 yards last season. Fullback Bradie Ewing was selected in the fifth round of April's and was expected to challenge Mike Cox for the starting position, but a year-ending torn ACL in the preseason opener scuttled those plans.
WR/TE: Ryan returns under center with a plethora of targets that includes Jones, who caught 54 passes for 959 yards (17.8-yard avg.) as a rookie after the Falcons traded up to get him with the No. 6 overall pick of the 2011 draft. He's joined by the 30-year-old veteran White, who caught 100 balls for a team-best 1,296 yards and scored eight times last year. It was the second straight season of triple-digit catches for White, who amassed 115 receptions a year earlier and raised his yards-per-catch average from 12.1 to 13.0 in 2011. He also posted a league-high 15 drops, however. Harry Douglas again mans the slot after making 39 catches for 498 yards last season, while Canton-bound tight end Tony Gonzalez caught 80 balls for 875 yards in a bounce-back year after compiling 70 catches for 656 yards a season earlier.
OL: The Falcons used second and third-round picks in this past draft to shore up a widely-criticized offensive line which many claimed was neglected a year earlier, when the team gave up a collection of draft choices to move up and get Jones. Returning starter Tyson Clabo and Mike Johnson are listed ahead of 2012 third-rounder Lamar Holmes at right tackle, while second-rounder Peter Konz could start as a rookie over Garrett Reynolds at right guard. Thirteen- year veteran Todd McClure remains in the fold at center, while left guard Justin Blalock and left tackle Sam Baker also return. The latter was limited to just 12 games and six starts last season because of a back injury.
DL: Veteran end John Abraham (35 tackles) continued a career's worth of passer pressure in 2011, registering 9 1/2 sacks in 15 games and forcing four fumbles. On the other side, Ray Edwards (33 tackles) managed just 3 1/2 sacks in his initial season in Atlanta after inking a big free-agent deal to exit Minnesota. Rookie fifth-round draft pick Jonathan Massaquoi entered the preseason listed third on the depth chart at left end, beneath Edwards and pass-rush specialist Kroy Biermann (37 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 1 INT). Jonathan Babineaux (21 tackles, 1 sack) and Corey Peters (26 tackles, 3 sacks, 1 INT) return as starters in the middle of the Falcons' 4-3 alignment, though Peters is questionable for the start of the season due to a foot injury. A 2009 first-round pick, 295-pounder Peria Jerry (10 tackles), is listed second behind Babineaux at left tackle.
LB: Leading tackler Curtis Lofton (147 tackles) was lost to New Orleans via free agency in the offseason, which leaves 2011 third-round choice Akeem Dent (20 tackles) as the front-runner to claim his old spot at middle linebacker. On the outside are holdovers Sean Weatherspoon (115 tackles, 4 sacks) and Stephen Nicholas (35 tackles), who combined for 150 tackles and four sacks in 2011. Among the second-stringers are veteran middle man Mike Peterson, who was signed to another one-year deal in the offseason after playing 15 games and making 24 tackles while picking off a pass a season ago. He'll provide insurance in case Dent struggles in his first try as a starter.
DB: The big name to enter the Falcons' fold in the offseason is cornerback Asante Samuel (34 tackles, 3 INT), who came over via a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles for a seventh-round pick and immediately agreed to rework his contract to $18.5 million over three seasons. He'll join returning corner Brent Grimes (49 tackles, 1 INT), who allowed just a 44.3 completion percentage last season compared to Samuel's solid 47.5 percent clip with the Eagles. The returning starters at safety are William Moore and Thomas DeCoud. Moore has missed 18 games in three seasons, but made 54 tackles and picked off two passes in 12 contests in 2011, while DeCoud had 86 tackles and four interceptions while suiting up for all 16 games. Nine-year man Dunta Robinson (49 tackles, 2 INT) looks like a nickel-coverage defender for 2012 following Samuel's addition.
SPECIAL TEAMS: Backup running back Rodgers inherits kick-return duties from Eric Weems, who returned 24 kicks for 563 yards (23.5 avg.) in 2011 before signing with the Chicago Bears in the offseason. Weems also returned 32 punts for a 9.8 yard average and is set for replacement by slot receiver Douglas, with kicker Matt Bryant (27-of-29 FG, 126 pts) and punter Matt Bosher (42.7 avg.) returning to their previous roles.
PROGNOSIS: The Falcons look stronger in the NFC South based on the offseason challenges faced by division-rival New Orleans, and the prolonged postseason foibles have to serve as a spur for maximum motivation to return for another chance for playoff redemption. Assuming Ryan, Jones, White and Turner remain healthy, enough offensive firepower to provide for at least a chance to erase those pockmarks has to be expected. And if Ryan takes the "he's an elite quarterback" step now twice taken by a certain NFC signal-caller in New York, he and Atlanta's final trip to Louisiana may actually be a little later than the scheduled Week 10 date with the Saints in early November.
Oh I will be laying some talk down after we get our full rosters
CHICAGO BEARS SEASON PREVIEW Coach J. Smith enters his first year at home in Chicago with a ton of optimism. Elite QB, RB, and WR? Check. Best DE in the league? Check. Two of the best veteran LBs in the league? Check. One of the most accurate kickers in NFL history? LOL, check that too. There's a ton of reason to be optimistic about the 2012-13 season, but with that being said, there are some question marks that need to be ironed out by the Week 1 opener at home against Indy. Offense QB: We're pretty set here. Jay Cutler is the unquestioned starter and will look to recreate the success he had in Denver with new #1 WR Brandon Marshall. Jason Campbell is solid and could start for several teams in this league; he will be the backup. Josh McCown will be a solid #3, but we may go in a different direction depending on who becomes available. Backs: Matt Forte and Michael Bush will look to form one of the most potent 1-2 combos in the league. While Forte IS a workhorse who can do everything well (but doesn't stand out in any one thing besides having the best hands at the RB pos. in the NFL), Bush is a battering ram at 6'1" and 247 lbs. but more athletic than you think. Look for something resembling a 60-40 carry split with Bush getting the short-yardage and GL work. Outside of that, there will be a competition all preseason for the 3rd and possibly 4th spots between Kahlil Bell, Armando Allen, Alvester Alexander, (and Lorenzo Booker). SPTeams value will help these guys. FB/TE: No word yet on whether we're going the H-Back route. But TE is actually pretty set with Davis as the starter. Hoping that Evan Rodriguez get's moved to his correct position at TE; Spaeth is the blocking TE, but is that what we really want? Only way Adams/Ross stays is if we decide to get rid of Spaeth. Receivers: Brandon Marshall will be the new #1, and 100 receptions is not out of the question. With Johnny Knox most likely on IR, look for Hester to certainly be the #2 to start the season. Bennett will compete with Alshon Jeffery for the #3 spot, but could be gone in a trade. Knox's injury means Eric Weems will be the 2nd KR as well as compete for playing time at WR. Dane Sanzenbacher's status is up in the air. Defense - will update this tomorrow.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 2012 SEASON PREVIEW
The Seahawks' offense is in a stage of flux. The good HB Marshawn "Beast Mode" Lynch is the anchor to the offense. Over the course of last season the running attack led by Lynch consistently improved, and defenses should be scared to play the Seahawks because defenders do not want to be the next Tracy Porter. In analyzing the passing game, let's just say this needs to improve. There is currently a two man quarterback battle between the $24 Million Dollar Man Matt Flynn, and Rookie Sensation Russell Wilson. Last year's starter Tavaris "Pick 6" Jackson has not seen any action this preseason and will hopefully be traded soon. Who Flynn/Wilson will throw to is entirely another question. Let's see we have TO, Deon Butler, Ben Obamanu, Charly Martin, Doug Baldwin, Sidney Rice, Jermaine Kearse. Yes, folks I haven't heard of these guys either.
Seahawks Fans want to see more of this
DEFENSE Shh! The defense is actually good. The line is led by DE Red Bryant. Bryant is a great player, and FG blocking specialist. Last season he blocked 3 field goals last season and against the Redskins he blocked two field goal in one game. In the middle of the line is DT Brandon Mebane. The linebacking crew is not shabby either with Leroy Hill, KJ Wright on the outside, and Bobby Wagner in the middle. The secondary is filled with a bunch of no namers. Two seasons ago it was it was unclear who these guys were and where they went to college. But with third year player SS Earl Thomas the secondary is secretly good with Kam Chancellor, and Brandon Bronwer on the corners teams should be afraid to pass the ball against the Hawks.
Kickers be aware
Was reading your talk about the No.2 Wideout issue and was wondering if the Bengals still have Jordan Shipley or perhaps you're not a big fan of him?
He's on the Buccaneers now
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