The discussion behind pass interference and the “The Call That Wasn’t” this offseason was pretty intense. It didn’t take much time after the end of the season for the subject of making pass interference a challengable call was brought up. The NFL Competition Committee added a few caveats to the new rule, taking the challenge out of the coaches hands.
They’ve added some stipulations to the challenge after the 2-minute warning of each half. Challenges can only be initiated by Replay Official, and only “under stricter guidelines”. They are hoping this will lower the number of challenges in that time frame, and in turn not have too much added time to a game.
Their season ended in a heartbreaking manner: so very close to the Super Bowl, only to be stopped by a controversial call.
I decided to go ahead and check in on the Saints this offseason, since we here at OurTurf hadn’t talked about them too much.
I asked one of our good friends and obviously, huge Saints fan Greg Barber about the team, offseason changes, their quarterback and his thoughts on the 2019 season.
SG: How’s the offseason going for the Saints?
GB: How is the offseason going for the Saints? I think the Saints offseason went good for the most part. They didn’t suffer many major losses. Not that losing [former Saints running back Mark] Ingram and [center Max] Unger were not major losses, but they managed to keep the main core players together.
The NFL is the most popular sport in America. Even fans of teams who feel like their team may not be going anywhere are still heading to games.
To help increase the popularity (like it needs any more help) and give the fans what they want, the NFL Draft has been moving from city to city, and it has worked well. At first, I thought that was sort of a stupid thing to do, but then I saw the response of the people in the cities that host the draft, and it’s been nothing short of awesome.
It’s also nice because a city can now host either a draft or a Super Bowl, giving more options for fans to interact. While a draft doesn’t bring as much revenue as the Super Bowl does, it still gives the city a chance to shine. Much like the success of Nashville this past draft.
This Sunday, June 16th, is Father’s Day, so I thought I’d take a look back at some of my favorite NFL players who followed in their father’s footsteps.
Frankly, I was surprised that – at least according to Wikipedia – there are only 53 father-son combos that have played in the League. I was also surprised to find three families whose NFL legacy has entered a third generation.
It doesn’t seem like the NFL has been around long enough to support three generatons, but here you go: Clay Matthews Sr., Clay Matthews Jr. and Clay Matthews III are my first set and the ones with whom we are most familiar. Then we have the Chickillo’s: Nick, Tony and Anthony, and the Pyne’s: George II, George III and Jim. Amazing, but true!
In April, the Miami Dolphins released their full 2019 NFL schedule. Then in May, came the news many Dolphins fans were waiting for. Tom Garfinkel, CEO of the Miami Dolphins announced via Twitter and Instagram that the Dolphins will sport their very popular throwbacks. He chose the September 15th home game.
At first, I thought it would be great to wear those against the defending Super Bowl champs, and the always a thorn in our side, New England Patriots. But as quickly as that thought came, it went. Was this a good idea?
Not since the missed kick-doink heard round the world has there been such emphasis on a kicker. It’s not like this was the first time a kicker has missed a field goal in a crucial game. Ask any Buffalo Bills fan. The Lombardi Trophy was in their grasp ready to be hoisted and it rested on the leg of Scott Norwood. With just eight seconds on the clock, Norwood kicks it and it has the distance, going towards the center, only to veer right missing the post altogether. Absolute heartbreak.
Kickers that were known to be clutch in games came from the likes of Billy Cundiff, Morten Andersen, Chandler Catanzaro, Gary Anderson, Adam Vinatieri, and Robbie Gould. Granted they had their share of missed kicks, costing them crucial games. But the one that hurt the Bears came from the Voldemort of Chicago, Cody Parkey. After having an incredible season, winning the NFC North that has eluded them since 2010, the Wild Card game was left on the leg of Parkey. Nothing can erase the facial expressions of quarterback Mitchell Trubisky or defensive end Akiem Hicks after that missed kick. Yes, Parkey hung his head in disbelief but “playing with the wind” on a crucial kick is bound to fail you.
This past weekend, New England quarterback, Tom Brady participated in the Best Buddies Challenge at the “University of Michigan in the East”, better known to most of you all as Harvard University. This was the 20th anniversary of the Challenge and Brady has been associated with it ever since 2003.
The 20th annual @bestbuddies challenge was last night! I want my kids to grow up in a world where people are recognized and celebrated for the characteristics that make them uniquely themselves because we’re all better when we include everyone. pic.twitter.com/bXDvWfiMNU
After seeing this tweet from Brady, I wanted to look into this organization more, and what exactly it’s about. After speaking with a couple of friends on Twitter, I was put in contact with Brad Blank, an NFL agent and also a Best Buddies Executive for 30 years.
Megatron. For those who love the game, that is how we’ll always remember Calvin Johnson and his talented, explosive time with the Detroit Lions. Oh, and for helping us to understand that we really don’t know what a catch is…
Drafted #2 overall in 2007 by the Lions, Johnson immediately became an elite receiver, holding both team and NFL records that still stand and making six trips to the Pro Bowl.
In March of 2012, he signed an eight-year extension for a cool $132 million, with $60 million guaranteed. He then went on to set the NFL record for most receiving yards in a single season at 1,964. Clearly, getting paid motivated him to continue producing on the field.
And then, in a move that not only shocked fans and is still talked about today, he announced his retirement in March of 2016 due to concerns for his long-term health if he continued to play the game of professional football.