#HoldOutSzn

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

Ahh yes.  It’s mid July.  I’m back from family’s annual trip to the beach, and that can only mean one thing.  It’s time for football to kick into gear.  Training camps, preseason, and everyone’s favorite, the hold outs.

It brings back fond memories of last season when then Steelers running back LeVeon Bell held out the entire season looking for a payday and ended up getting picked up by the Jets and taking less money.  We saw what happened with then Seattle Seahawk safety Earl Thomas holding out, coming to play and then getting injured.

But we’re looking to see if history could repeat itself in the form of Chargers RB Melvin Gordon who is asking for more money, and if he can’t get it, demanding a trade.

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In the “New NFL” who would be the winners?

 

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

For the past two weeks, Kate Arhar has written about more geographically pleasing divisions in the NFL.

I love the idea! It would be great to see some of the new rivalries.  It would be great to see the Cowboy fans, Saints fans, and Falcon fans go at it.

The AFC North rivalries would be awesome as well! While there weren’t too many big changes with the teams, there were some.

This week’s Blitzed NFL Insider’s featured article!

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Checking in on the Baltimore Ravens

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

It’s been a while since we’ve talked about the Baltimore Ravens here on Our Turf.  So, I scoured the internet to find someone who I could ask about the Ravens.  I came up with “The most ELITE Raven’s blog on the internet”, The Baltimore Feather!   He was gracious enough to let me pick his brain about the 2018 AFC North champions.   Here’s our chat!

SG: John Harbaugh. They extended him over the offseason, and a lot of people felt that he could be on the move. How do you feel about that?

The Baltimore Feather:  John Harbaugh’s extension was well deserved. His win of the AFC North after changing quarterbacks and offensive schemes mid-season makes him look like a football wizard. Many people were convinced at the bye week that Harbaugh would depart from Baltimore after 2018, but his playoff push saved him from that fate.

I think the extension and the vote of confidence from the Ravens brass are well deserved and the right move for the organization. Harbaugh is one of the best coaches in the NFL, and it would be a terrible mistake to let him go.

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So, really: Who has the best NFL fans

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

If you ask anyone on Twitter, or anywhere, to be quite honest, of course, everyone will say that they are the best fans in the NFL.  If you ask me, it’s a title that really shouldn’t be taken too seriously, because there’s always some sort of bias to it.  But that’s just me.

However, a professor from Emory University, Dr. Mike Lewis, performed a study and ranked the fanbases of all 32 NFL teams.

The top 3?  Eagles fans, Patriots fans, and Cowboy fans.

The bottom 3?  Titans fans, Chiefs fans and Rams fans.

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The “return” of Brett Favre?

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

Raise your hand if you remember the “I’m retired now I’m not” phase of former Packers, Jets and Vikings quarterback Brett Favre.  Did anyone else get the feeling that when he finally hung it up, that it wasn’t really going to be the last time?  I know I did. But he finally settled into starring in Wrangler commercials and those copper wire commercials, fishing and whatever else it is retired NFL players do.

Then yesterday afternoon, an Instagram post changed all of that. Since Favre deleted it the post, I’ll have to stick with this tweet.

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Checking in on the New Orleans Saints

 

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

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.

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Keep the Combine in Indy, the draft can move

 

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

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.

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Tom Brady and his Best Buddies

 

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

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.

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.

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Taking pain management in the NFL seriously

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

A new day is coming in the NFL.  Probably sooner, rather than later.  Kate wrote about this yesterday

The NFL and the NFLPA are going to start taking pain management seriously.  And part of taking pain management seriously means that the NFL will potentially have to address the marijuana issue.

Many former players have embraced and endorsed using marijuana for pain relief.  It’s been known to be just as effective, if not more so than regular prescription opioids and other medications that the NFL has routinely used.

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Remembering Gunther Cunningham

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

On May 13th it was announced that former Kansas City Chiefs head coach, and former Chiefs, Raiders, and Lions defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham had passed over the weekend.

For the Lions, he served as both a defensive coordinator under former head coach Jim Schwartz and then a defensive analyst for the Lions when he retired.

Born in Germany, he came to the United States as a child, shortly after World War II ended. At the time, he didn’t speak English but used football to help get acclimated to America.  He ended up having college coaching stints at Oregon, California, Stanford and Arkansas.

After his college career, he spent some time in Canada in the CFL.  In 1982, he came back to the States and began his NFL Coaching career; first with the Colts, then moving on to Kansas City.

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