Hey everyone...let's get this rolling
How likely is it that the Jets will reach the postseason this year?
I do expect a noticeably improved D, but I still think their O is too easy to play against. How many 13-10 games can they win? I don't see them as a playoff team, but I will say they have a 38% chance of reaching the post season.
What are your thoughts of the Dolphins giving up the 3rd rounder they got for Marshall to go after Percy Harvin? He seems like a good fit no?
The Dolphins do seem like a good fit for Harvin. I thought the Jets first, but Miami is growing on me too. I think a 2nd is more appropriate compensation though. I also don't think Minny can let this guy go.
hey matt with the all 22 being released this year do you plan on talking about how to break down the film in your podcasts and articles? specifically how to grade WRs and DBs
I would certainly be open to that...it will be different for sure for the serious fan.
Think the Vikings would deal Harvin within their own division? I don't but anything's possible.
I would say highly unlikely. The Bears came to mind, but how can you play against that guy twice a year?
Given that you've been skeptical about the Broncos chances this year, what do you think Denver needs to do to win a Super Bowl before Peyton retires?
They could win it this year. I am skeptical, but I do see that as a possibility if everything falls into place-which it could with Manning orchestrating everything. I have serious concerns about their Run D, but I think they will defend the pass really well now. I also don't love their OL overall and I just think making such a drastic transition from last year's O to this year's O will take a lot of time to be executed properly.
I hear the Bills could use some WR help...Harvin seems like a Chan Gailey guy to me
I can't argue that. Has some similarities to Spiller.
does Jerry Hughes have a chance with the Colts?
I have heard good things thus far and I think a switch to a 3-4 is very good for him. We shall see in the preseason though.
Do you think Chan Gailey can find a way to utilize both Fred-x and CJ?
Yeah, I think he features Jackson though first and foremost. Jackson was spectacular before his injury last year. Spiller could get more reps at WR, even on the field with Jackson.
A year removed from the Dream Team debacle, do you think the Eagles have made the moves needed to live up to expectations this year?
No question. Their D should be fantastic. The entire offseason should do Vick a lot of good. Can he stay healthy? I do have serious questions about that.
Stevie Johnson O/U 1100 yds 10 tds?
Seems a little lofty, esp the TDs, but not outlandish. They throw the ball well and he is clearly the top target. Not a great player, but right below that distinction in my mind.
Just saw the all-time best RB poll ESPN put up...who would you take - Marshall Faulk or LT?...I say Faulk hands down...
We talked about this on the podcast and I also discussed it on Pittsburgh radio this week. To me, that is the toughest comparison. I put Brown first and in a class all his own. Payton is second for me and Sanders third. Then, I think picking between LT, Faulk, OJ & Dickerson is really tough. Dickerson is probably last on that group. Emmitt goes right after those for to me. 1. J Brown 2. Payton 3. Sanders 4. OJ 5. LT 6. Faulk 7. Dickerson 8. Emmitt
What team is the best fit for Harvin?
Still trying to figure that out. So far, Jets and Bills seem like good fits, but Miami is prob the best. Baltimore? Houston?
I'm curious, we hear about qb's like Brady and Manning are students of the game and constantly study tape. What have you heard about Ben? He comes across as someone who wouldn't be a big tape guy?
I am under the impression that you are right-early in his career. But after getting into trouble in Georgia, I think he dedicated himself more to his craft-and it showed up on the field.
What do you think the odds are of Harvin actually getting traded?
Slim. The Vikes need to make Ponder's life easier in order to develop a true Franchise QB, which I think Ponder could become. Losing Harvin now with Simpson's suspension and Peterson's injury might destroy the guy. They need to use Harvin more too.
What about San Fran for Harvin?
They just has SO many WRs right now though. And for that matter, RBs.
Why wouldnt Houston, Cleveland, or Miami (to name a few) offer a 4th rd pick or something for James Jones? He would be a huge upgrade as HOU and CLEV's #2 WR, no?
Would GB take that? The Pack is trying to win now. Miami in particular with the Philbin connection sure makes sense. I see James Jones as a starting caliber #2 WR with some inconsistencies, but also with ability.
Santonio Holmes got traded for a 6th rd pick, 4th is too high for James Jones
Not a fair comparison though. PGH would have given Santonio away.
Which AFC and NFC tight-end comes out of nowhere this year in this new age of TE's?
There are SO many to pick from. I think Gresham has a real big year as the 2nd option in Cincy. Cook could certainly be the next big thing. I love Fred Davis too, but he might have already broken out. K Rudolf and J Casey are two of my favorites.
kyle rudolph and kellen davis
Davis is another good name
Will Martellus Bennet reach his full potential in NY? How good do you think he can be?
Well, he is pretty clearly the starter. And being on the field a lot with Eli should produce numbers. I think he is better than anyone they had last year. What does he weigh now though? But he is a very good blocker, which is huge considering the state of NYG's OL
We're always talking about who's about to break out..do you see anyone that is a candidate for a huge regression? I'm thining Jordy...so many TDs, rise of Jones, Cobb, Finley finally breaking out...
Tend to agree with you. LOVE Cobb & Finley. I just LIKE Nelson.
Giants don't utilize the TE too much...Boss and Ballard are very good players but didn't see a lot of passes their way. With Nicks/Cruz and Barden/Hixon coming back their WR are stacked
All true. I don't think Bennett is a break out candidate like was asked a few questions ago, but I do think he was a good signing and an upgrade for NYG
Andre J and Fitz about to decline?
Would bet on Andre's decline before Larry's for sure. Just because of all the injuries. I don't see anything in Fitz's game to suggest he is going backwards yet.
matt i know ou think the cards and seahawks can challenge the niners but do you flat out expect either to win the division over them outright ??
I do think SF wins that division. Most talent. Established. Upgraded their explosiveness from a year ago.
What's the ceilling of Freeman? Can he really become elite?
He can-and I don't say that about many QBs. But he has a ton of work to do. Time to break him down, run the ball, take a lot off his plate and start over. Make him more of a caretaker. Work on the fundamentals of playing the position. Then let him grow again.
John Clayton has Kansas City going 7-9. Do you agree or disagree?
Disagree. I will prob pick KC to win the West.
Injuries aside, the bears should be pretty good this year, right?
I think and can certainly see why people are excited about Chicago. The coaching/scheme change should REALLY help the OL...but they still don't have good players there. That is my big worry.
What is the definition of an "elite" QB to you? John Clayton seems to have a more liberal definition than I do...to me, an elite QB is at least the top 5 guys and at MOST top 10. Elite should mean the best of the best, agreed?
I am semi torn on that right now. I think you can make the argument that there are only three elite QBs right now: Brees, Brady, Rodgers. I have consistently put Ben and Eli in that category as well, but I will admit there is a bit of a gap between the top 3 to those two. Before last season, I thought Rivers was elite as well-and he can certainly get back there. Who knows about Peyton, but clearly he has spent most of his career as Elite. I have put those five I mentioned as Elite and then the next tier I label Franchise QBs and there are about 8 of those guys.
How about Dennis Pitta for a breakout TE candidate?
Good player, but I don't see it. Not sure that he is athletic enough to really create huge matchup problems like guys like Cook
Forget about being "ELITE" if you don't have a SB win.
I am not with you there. Dan Marino was Elite. No doubt in my mind. Team game.
Let's pretend for a minute that a miracle happens and Vick missed 0 games. How many wins do the Eagles end up with?
12...and a very possible trip to the Super Bowl. Vick isn't without faults as a QB though. But this team is strong.
No denying Texans D nubers last year but they also played Colts twice Jags twice Miami Clev. and Oak, so bad offensive teams. Are they a top 5 D or did the easy schedule make them higher rated than they should have been?
Great observation. We talked about this on Twitter (@WilliamsonNFL) quite a bit last week. I think they are right on that Top 5 fringe. I would take SF, SEA, PHIL, NYJ over Hous and maybe Pittsburgh and Baltimore and Chicago
Sources in Minnesota are reporting that Adrian Peterson may be ready the first week of the season. Even if this proves to be true, shouldn't they be more cautious and sit him the first couple of weeks at least? I know Frazier may not like that, but organizationally, and for AD, isn't it the right call not to rush him back?
I can't believe that anyone really knows if he will be back for Week 1 right now, but under no circumstances would I rush him back.
Matt - I agree on a lot of things with you but are you NUTZ on Emmitt's ranking? The only thing he did not have was blazing speed but did everything else that MADE the cowboys win Superbowls!
He's awesome. Amazing. Definition of a work horse. My only point on Emmitt, is what do you think LT/OJ does behind that OL and with Aikman and Irvin? I have GREAT respect for Emmitt, but just don't think he was quite as special as those other guys.
Will Denarious Moore be able to step up for the Raiders this year and become the go to receiver?
I very much think so.
Will a combination of Upshaw, McPhee and Kruger be able to replace Suggs' production this season?
No and you can throw Kindle's name in there too. To me, a huge weakness on that D last year was an edge rusher opposite Suggs, which is why they picked Upshaw. That was really promising, but those guys you mentioned are #2 pass rushers (like
But...I will say that Balt's CBs could be improved next year and very good, which will help the Pass D obviously.
Judging by your (deserved) love for AJ Green, Fitz, and D. Moore, you see body control and leaping ability as far more important traits for a WR than speed...right?
I would say so. Fluidity. Ability to make routes all look the same. Body control for sure. Speed isn't such a bad trait to have though either!
Everyone was killing them for it, and its very early, but it looks like Coples is looking like a good pick for the Jets. Thoughts?
Very interesting fit. Certainly more talented than his draft position would indicate and I very much believe that Rex knows how to utilize those talents. Will align all over the DL most likely-outside in a 4-3, DE in the 3-4 and in their 46 Front. Might be right...
What impact do you think Jarrett Johnson will have in SD?
Early down OLB...and a good one. Leader. Tough. Great vs. the run. On the sidelines for Barnes and/or Ingram on passing downs.
Do you think Bruce Carter has an impact this year? I think that year off from UNC caused him to have a rough go of it last year. Could you see him stepping up and making an impact on that DL?
I think we have to give all those UNC guys a pass...Little, Austin, Quinn, Carter. But I don't think Carter is the starter. Lee is great and Connor is a two down player and great insurance for if Carter doesn't develop. But if Carter does develop, their ILBs could be mentioned with SF's.
No one dreamed that the Jets were going to a 4-3 when they were getting criticized for taking Coples...
I think we will see EVERYthing from the Jets' D this year
Is there realistic way the Steelers LT Mike Adams is capable of starting week 1 at the position? Is Marcus McNeil too expensive and/or too much of a medical liability to be a rent-a-player until he is ready?
Would imagine if they are to add a veteran there, it would be Max Starks if healthy. But the way I see it is that if an OL has one question mark (Adams in this case) you can slide protections his direction or help with with a RB or TE while he learns. The problems really arise when you have two weak starters.
Who do you see ending up having the most carries among the Redskins RBs? Hightower is such an average runner, I'd love to see Helu/Royster take the next step.
I would bet heavily on Helu for that honor. I just think he is the best of the group as a ball carrier and the best fit for Shanny's scheme.
Do you see Shawn Phillips bouncing back from his down season with SD, or is he done?
I don't think he is done. Maybe declining slightly. But he was the only threat last year. Demanded a lot of opposing attention in their pass pro.
Steelers have a rookie guard penciled in too. Best line in football our AFCN blogger Hensley says...
I do think the Steelers OL will compete to be the best in the NFL this year...and for the foreseeable future. I really like Carolina's OL though too.
Do you share the concerns about the Ravens offensive line that others at ESPN and in other circles have offered regarding age and ability?
Much less now post-draft. I would move J Reid back to LT to compete with McKinnie and let the two rooks compete for the LG position.
I'm expecting big things for the Skins' front 7 this year. Kerrigan with a year under his belt and a full offseason, Cofiled with some experience at NT, and a ton of depth if Goff and Jenkins are healthy. Thoughts?
Couldn't agree more. Very strong Front 7. I worry about the secondary however.
Do you see Jabal Sheard continuing to improve this year or will he regress?
Highly doubt he goes backwards. Very solid all around young DE. Good vs. run too. Base DE. Doubt he is ever a fantastic pass rusher, but he will always be above average there.
You think J Reid can start LT this year? Is Oher not the future LT?
Not sure if Reid can or not, but I don't trust McKinnie at all and I don't think Reid is a guard. I do think Oher is a lifer at RT though.
Fan of Robert Quinn?
Huge. I have been doing these "Best of 2015" positional series and will turn in Pass Rushers in the next 24 hours. It goes up on Monday. Quinn will be high...real high...on my list. LOVE the Rams DEs
You going to the NHL draft at Consol on Friday?
I am not...bet that would be fun though. I honestly don't know one name in that draft class though
M Dub you all in on T. Rich? Top 10 rb this year? Top 5?
ALL IN....easily Top 10
Do you think Marcell Dareus is going to have a big year?
I do. Even without the great supporting cast, I think Dareus is just very difficult to block. With the great Bills' DL, he should be a Pro Bowler.
Did you see the Furrys in Pittsburgh?
Litter Boxes in their hotel rooms!
Does your top 5 fantasy receivers include A.J. Green and Julio Jones?
For this season? Green is Top 3 to me (but few others). I doubt I have Julio in my Top 5, but he is a Top 10 WR for fantasy.
Lardarius Webb to rival Revis as best CB in the league by season's end?
Easy Big Guy. Love Webb, but that is too steep. The only guys I can say might...might...rival Revis by season end are Peterson and Haden.
Have you seen Waters The Wall in concert? Any good live?
Not yet, but going VERY soon. Can't wait. Have seen Floyd several times. Couldn't go see Waters the last time he was here because of Sunday Night Football...
London Fletcher a Hall of Famer? His stats are pretty close to Ray Lewis, who's a no-brainer.
No..zero Pro Bowls. Great player, but I can't say he goes to the HOF.
Why do you think the Niners drafted Lamicheal James, isnt he very similar to Kendall Hunter, around same height, weight, speed, skill set, etc..?
It is curious. I see Hunter as more of a feature back than James and James being a little closer to the Sproles mold than Hunter. But they are similar. I think SF will use a LOT of different O personnel-fast paced tempo more than we have seen. Rotate guys in and out. But in the end, the #1 goal for SF this offseason had to have been to become more explosive on O. James is explosive.
Fletcher is so underappreciated...if Redskins had been better in his career, he would have received more attention. Pro Bowl voting?? Come on M dub, that's no way to rate a player's worth or career
I agree with everything you are saying, but I still don't think he gets in. His stats will be impressive to the voters, but his accomplishments/awards will not be. Great player, but is he a Top 10 LB for this generation? Obviously behind guys like Lewis, Urlacher, Brooks, Seau...and prob several others.
I feel as though Matt Stafford will take over the top QB spot this season. I hear Titus is catching everything, Pettigrew is improved, and of course Calvin. Am I crazy?? I predicted Rodgers ascension 2 seasons ago as well.
You are not crazy at all. I very much believe that Stafford will be truly elite. Top few by seasons end. No doubt. Special.
How would yould you see Addai being used in NE? He is decent recieving option and a good pass blocker but do you see him getting 10-13 carries a game?
The whole key for Addai for me is how well do Ridley and Vereen pass protect? Those two youngsters deserve many more carries than Addai, but Addai is reliable and won't get Brady killed. If they prove to be reliable, I think Addai does little. Insurance.
Bucs fan here, who gets in HOF Brooks, sapp, Lynch, barber all in?
Wow, tough call. I think Brooks and Sapp are in. The other two I give 50/50. Barber has some incredibly numbers, but was he ever considered a Top 5 CB during his career?
Clayton has Steelers at 10 wins. Thoughts?
Seems reasonable, but I prob take the OVER on that one.
Lynch and Barber are iffy to me...Hall of Very Good along with Fletcher?
Tending to think that way myself on those two
How many wins for NE?
12 or 13...I think they are the best team in the NFL right now
Guys, I gotta run. Fun chat as always. Be here next week!