Was the risk of making these moves worth it and will they pay off?
The Minnesota Vikings’ lack of confidence in Case Keenum throughout the 2017 season carried over to the offseason as they did not offer the quarterback a contract. Then they turn around and pay huge money to Kirk Cousins, who has never won a playoff game.
I always felt the Vikings disrespect of Case and lack of loyalty was disgraceful. Now they roll with Kurt, who I happen to like. But remember, there were plenty of Viking players in the locker room last season that did not care for the way Case was treated.
I believe the Vikes are the best team in the NFC North and hope there is no carry over for the team execs letting go of Keenum, Bradford and Bridgewater. Case moves on to the Denver Broncos, where they felt he was worth the risk of putting their franchise for 2018 in his hands.
Last Thursday we saw 9 of the 12 NFL preseason games go OVER the total. That was not expected, since most early preseason games tend to be played under the number. It seems as if the handcuffs the league has put on the defenses has finally left the door open for even more scoring, which has been the trend lately.
Most viewers of the Browns/Giants game came away very impressed with Baker Mayfield. He was very poised in the pocket and did not put himself in harm’s way, which is what we usually see from newbies. The Browns may have found a quarterback that can stick in Mayfield. That being said, they do have Tyrod Taylor as their starter for now who also looked very sharp in the preseason opener. We will see how that all turns out.
The Browns have taken plenty of money on the season over/under win total – up from 4.5 to 6 and now 5.5. It is tough to bet on an organization as bad and dysfunctional as the Browns have been the last few decades.
Some teams did not show up in Week 1, so don’t try and put too much stock in what we saw. The Rams didn’t even start their offensive No. 1’s, who got plenty of work in the previous week’s scrimmage with the Ravens. Weeks 2 and 3 tend to show more reality as the starters will get more work, especially Week 3, commonly known as a dress rehearsal for Week 1 regular season.
They might as well skip Week 4 which is really a joke. It’s more for those final cuts and to see who stays and goes.
From what I am hearing, Aaron Rodgers is quite upset the team let go wide receiver Jordy Nelson, who was his friend and favorite go-to guy, not to mention a fan favorite. Nelson went to the Oakland Raiders where he will be catching balls from QB Derek Carr.
The best team overall in that division is Minnesota, so any disfunction elsewhere will only serve the Vikings’ march to the conference title. This may be the last go around for Rodgers and McCarthy.
I’m still looking for a real battle between the Saints and the Falcons for the NFC South Division title. Those two teams are loaded, with great QB leadership. I lean toward the Saints to win the battle, but it will be close.
The Eagles are solid but who will contend for the NFC East? I’m not looking for Dallas or the Redskins but feel the Giants have a leg up on those two. Losing Dez Bryant could be a plus but no Jason Witten will hurt the Boys. Alex Smith has taken over the signal-calling for the Washington Redskins. He has been a winner everywhere he has played, not flashy but a solid quarterback.
The Seattle offensive line last week was horrendous. I am not a fan of how HC Pete Carroll has handled this club the last few years. The Rams will step up and be very solid with the Niners contending. The Seahawks and Cards are not in the mix this year.
I may have under estimated the Ravens. QB Joe Flacco may have needed the push of looking over his shoulder at Lamar Jackson and RGIII contending for his job. That could be a big plus and the Ravens do have a good coaching staff.
All-in-all it should be an exciting football season, especially with the new rules in place. Buckle your seat belts and enjoy the ride.