What We Learned From the AAF Inaugural Games

Wanda Wiedman,
NFL Reporter

By Wanda Wiedman / @WandaW63

A dream that has been floating around for many years and has finally found a voice through the Alliance of American Football.

The league came about as a way to appeal to the undrafted college players, the tossed aside unsigned NFL players and former coaches. It is an opportunity for a chance at redemption and to be a part of a league that gives players a stage to prove they have what it takes to play in the NFL. Below are a few things we learned from the inaugural kickoff:

Old and untapped running backs and wide receivers show their skills.

Former first-rounder for the Cleveland Browns, Trent Richardson bounced around the NFL but proved he still had game with 2 rushing touchdowns, 23 carries, 58 rushing yards, and a fumble for the Birmingham Iron.

Keep an eye out for RB Jhurell Pressley of the Salt Lake Stallions. He went undrafted in 2016, bounced around five different NFL teams but was impressive in the opener with 18 touches for 84 yds, 2-2pt conversions, and a receiving TD.

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NFL teams ready themselves for offseason

Lisa
Lisa Johnson,
NFL Reporter

By Lisa Johnson // @LJ1303

While many NFL eyes were in Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII and the end of the 2018 season, 30 other NFL teams were already very busy preparing for the 2019 season. Teams with new head coaches scrambled to round out their staff, while draft boards started going up in every front office.

As the final seconds of the Super Bowl clicked off the clock, most fans put the season to rest. Many moved on to baseball, basketball, soccer, or hockey. While others still starving for some type of NFL action or news will turn their attention to the NFL calendar.

One good thing the NFL has gotten extremely good at is promoting offseason transactions and events. Making many of these events, which used to be closed, open to the public. Fans can enjoy the Combine, Draft, and of course, the all-important tickets to training camps.

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The OTFB Podcast’s NFL preseason picks – how did we do?

Well, we are nearing the end of another action-packed NFL Regular Season.

Each year, on the OTFB Podcast, Lisa Johnson and Dayna O’Gorman, along with some special guests, make their pick for who will win each division. This year Kate Arhar (that’s me!) was their special guest and they also put up some Twitter polls to gauge who the fans believed would win.

We thought it would be fun to take a look back and see if they were right or wrong!

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Do NFL Rookies Get the Gravity of Money?

Official Chicago Bears Reporter

By Wanda Wiedman / August 16, 2018

He gets it. Cleveland Browns defensive lineman Carl Nassib shares his thoughts on investment with teammates on HBO’s Hard Knocks.

“We got a lot of money right now, right? This is the easiest equation to make you rich. You have a million dollars and after seven years getting 10% of the money every single year, you are making money off of it, you’re going to double it after seven years. You’re gonna double it every seven years for 42 (expletive) years, you get 64 times your original (expletive) money. So if you got a million dollars you’re gonna end up with 64 million dollars by the time you retire.”

Drafted by the Browns in 2016, Nassib signed a 4-year contract worth $3.2 million, with a signing bonus of $890,000 dollars. Now, let’s assume he lives off of just the signing bonus, which is $222K, and invests the rest, he can have a very nice financial cushion upon retirement.

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The Quarterback Matrix: Who will be The One

Official Chicago Bears Reporter

By Wanda Wiedman //@WandaW63

Last season it was about defenses and backup quarterbacks. It was calm, cool, collectiveness of backup QB Nick Foles who lead the Philadelphia Eagles to a long overdue Super Bowl trophy. All 31 teams were put on notice after that and the QB carousel has been in full swing since the start of free agency.

Just in case some of you have been under a rock, here are the QB changes that have occurred in the past two-weeks of the quarterback matrix.

After a lengthy, but meticulous process, former Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins is now a Minnesota Viking. Washington traded with the Kansas City Chiefs for cornerback Kendall Fuller and a 2018 third-round draft pick, making QB Alex Smith a Washington Redskin. Smith signed a four-year, $94 million extension with Washington, while Cousins signed a three-year $84 million fully guaranteed contract.

Is your head spinning yet?

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The March Madness of Free Agency

Official Chicago Bears Reporter

By Wanda Wiedman // @WandaW63

The long-anticipated trades and free agency frenzy has finally arrived. It began with a surge of trades throughout the league ignited by the Seattle Seahawks. A shock to the Seattle fans, defensive end Michael Bennett is traded to the Super Bowl champions, the Philadelphia Eagles and a seventh round pick in exchange for a fifth round pick. But what seemed like a simple trade was the beginning of players released which included cornerback Richard Sherman and Jeremy Lane, tight end Jimmy Graham and wide receiver Paul Richardson. Seahawks did re-sign DB Bradley McDougald.

But the Bennett trade also ignited a trading bonanza by the Cleveland Browns as they gave up a 2018 4th rounder and a 2019 seventh-rounder for Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry, This was followed up by a trade of their top third-round pick for Buffalo Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor. But before anyone could take a breath, the Browns swapped fourth and fifth round picks for Green Bay Packers cornerback Damarious Randall in exchange for QB DeShone Kizer.

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Sports isn’t just a man’s world anymore

Kate Arhar Official Reporter, Cleveland Browns

 

by Kate Arhar // @clvlndk8  

 

Today is Women’s Day and here at Our Turf Football – a site run and staffed by women – I thought it was appropriate to celebrate some of the women that I think are making contributions in the NFL and paving the way for the next generation of women. Some of the names you should already know, but I’m willing to bet a few will surprise you.

 

TEAM LEADERSHIP

Martha Firestone Ford – Detroit Lions After her husband’s death in 2014, Ford became sole owner of the Detroit Lions. Currently, she is the majority owner with small shares being held by her four children. She’s 93 years old, but don’t let the age fool you. She is very involved in the operation of the team as well as the hiring of coaches and player retention. She even worked directly with players during the protests last season and was able to work with them by financially supporting efforts in their communities for social change.

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Honoring the Women Who Paved the Way to the NFL

Official Chicago Bears Reporter

by Wanda Wiedman // @WandaW63

There are some that would say every day is International Women’s Day and in some way, they are right, but not based on the usual reasons. The struggle of gender equality has been going on for centuries but not surprising is the list of women who have overcome that. Eleanor Roosevelt once said:  “A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.”

How true a statement that is! I come from a long line of strong women who persevered and overcame many obstacles. But today is a day to celebrate and honor just a few women who paved the way in the National Football League, which has always been a boys club.

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Free Agent Kirk Cousins: Where does he land?

Kate Arhar
Kate Arhar OTFB Reporter

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8  

 

As the free agent period approaches, one of the hottest names and biggest difference makers for a franchise is Kirk Cousins. I think it’s safe to say that, with the signing of Alex Smith, Washington will not be putting a Franchise Tag on Cousins which means he can start looking for his next team on March 14th.

There are quite a few teams desperately searching for a franchise quarterback, but are they all viable options at this point? Do they have the money to pay Cousins the huge contract he wants? Do they have the cap space? Are they the type of organization that he would want to play for? Let’s look at the front runners…

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Jerry Kramer is going into the Pro Football Hall of Fame!

Kate Arhar, OTFB Reporter

 

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8  

The Pro Football Hall of Fame, Class of 2018, was announced this past weekend. As always, my favorite selection is the one from the Senior Committee. These gentlemen have been over-looked and under-appreciated when compared to the modern-era players. And, most importantly, they are the heart, soul, beginnings of this game I love.

They wore leather helmets and pads that were a puny excuse for protection. They got paid so little that most had second jobs during the offseason. They played because they loved the game.

While it was before my time, my dad would tell me stories about these great men and they’ve always stayed with me.  This year I was very excited to see that Jerry Kramer from the Green Bay Packers would finally be admitted into this great hall.

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