There wasn’t a lot to say about the Arizona Cardinals in 2018. Honestly, it was basically a throwaway season. However, with the Cards having a new coach and the first pick in the draft, can 2019 bring a turnaround?
After going 3-13, the Cardinals knew things had to change. They started with firing head coach Steve Wilks after just one season, and hiring college football coach, Kliff Kingsbury. Kingsbury started coaching in 2008 moving from the University of Houston, then on to Texas A&M, and finally to Texas Tech. He had been hired as the offensive coordinator at USC in December, but obviously, let that go to coach at the NFL level.
Reaction to the Kingsbury hire was, to say the least, cool from fans and media. However, he coached quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes, Baker Mayfield, Johnny Manziel, and Case Keenum. So there is reason to think his system could carry over to the NFL. Add to that the fact they brought in former Broncos head coach Vance Joseph as defensive coordinator, this team has a completely fresh start in coaching.
Even after being named MVP of a Super Bowl LII, even after saving the Eagles 2018 season and taking them to the playoffs, Philadelphia continued to tell quarterback Nick Foles he just wasn’t good enough. QB Carson Wentz, who has been injured the last two seasons, will be their starter. Foles decided that it was time to move on, and he paid $2 million to do it.
The Eagles had picked up Foles $20 million option, but that would mean he would continue to carry a clipboard for Wentz. Foles paid the fee to be released from that option, but Philadelphia still has the ability to franchise tag him. This would give the team the ability to trade him. It has been reported that multiple teams are interested in bringing Foles on board. This isn’t surprising considering the state of the quarterback situation in the NFL.
During Pro Bowl week in Orlando, one would think the focus would be on the NFL players and the celebratory game played at the end of each season. But what I discovered is another extremely popular aspect of Pro Bowl week…Flag Football.
The Play Football Flag Football championship tournament is played during the same week, in the same venue. With the NFL embracing flag football, are we seeing what the future may bring to the professional levels?
Imagine, millions of kids between the ages of 7 to 14, all playing football. It’s every NFL owner and Roger Goodell’s dream. But the dream has had to change over the last decade. With injuries, CTE, and other issues that have faced professional football, the league has had to focus on how to make the game safer. Parents simply didn’t want their children to play a game that could damage their future. Enter in flag football.
What started out as a rainy, windy day in Orlando, ended with perfect temperatures, hot dance moves, and a whole lot of fun.
The NFC practice had to be moved indoors due to the weather. With that change, it allowed the NFC practice and the AFC practice to be held at different times, which allowed fans to be able to watch both conferences. Today I attended the AFC practice.
Quarterbacks Andrew Luck (Indianapolis), DeShaun Watson (Houston), and Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City) took turns running plays with the team while head coach Anthony Lynn watched from a distance, letting coaches Gus Bradley and others take over.
The QBs ran a few running plays, but when they switched to passing plays, it seemed to turn into a game of keep away. The defense made their presence known by grabbing interceptions and blocking passes. Let’s just say, it was a good thing there weren’t any officials on the field. It was all in good fun and the players loved it.
As they always do this time of year, we are being inundated with opinions. The arguments over end of season awards, conversations regarding which team most improved, which teams took the biggest step back. Yet every year, since the end of the 2012 season, there is one thing most reporters and media members can apparently agree on.
That Russell Wilson is one of the best quarterbacks in the league, yet chronically underrated.
Anyone who reads my articles or listens to the Our Turf Football Podcast knows I’m not a huge fan of quarterbacks. Its always been my observation that they get more credit for wins than they deserve, yet rarely have the burden of being responsible for defeats. However, today I put my “defense lover” hat away and focus on the one player that has been the cornerstone for Seattle’s string of successes.
Steve Wilks is out as the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals after just one season. Wilks will be the first one and done head coach since Chip Kelly’s firing in San Francisco two years ago.
Wilks started his coaching career at the college level for Savannah State University. He then moved up to the NFL, working for the Chicago Bears and the San Diego Chargers. When Ron Rivera became head coach for the Carolina Panthers, he brought Wilks with him, moving up from secondary coach to assistant head coach in 2015.
Wilks interviewed with both the Los Angeles Rams and the New York Giants before landing the job in Arizona.
For the Seattle Seahawks, last nights win against the Kansas City Chiefs was about more than getting a 17-2 record in prime time games. Even about more than clinching a playoff spot. This was a game about proving that the last few years weren’t a fluke. This game and this season has been about showing the NFL that the system, the Pete Carroll philosophy, still works.
I’ll admit it. Anyone who follows me on Twitter already knows. I didn’t watch this game live. Couldn’t watch this game live. December football stresses me out too much so I often have to watch games the next morning to save my sanity and my blood pressure. After watching the game this morning I can tell you, I’ve seen this team before. I’ve seen this energy before. And although wide receiver Doug Baldwin won’t say it, I will. It feels like 2012 all over again.
Let’s be honest, it wasn’t a pretty win… but it was my favorite kind of win. It was a win that could have easily gotten away from Seattle. But it didn’t, and now the Seahawks are one win away from clinching a playoff berth. In a year where they weren’t expected to win more than four or five games, they are the team no one wants to face.
Lisa Johnson and I argue about this all the time on the OTFB podcast. Defense or offense, which is more important? But it’s not just a shtick we do for the show. She truly believes offense wins games, I say, quite adamantly, the defense is most important.
What last night’s Monday Night Football game against the Minnesota Vikings showed was that what truly wins games is a balance. What makes the Seahawks so dangerous right now is that balance, and it’s alive and well in Seattle.
December, the time of year that brings us fun holidays, great times with family and friends, and a bright new year. But for Seattle Seahawks fans, it also brings their teams best football of the year. This year seems to be no different. Lets look at the gifts Seattle fans are receiving this year. Gifts that will help take the Seahawks to the post season.
Could anyone ask for a better present than the gift of having linebacker Bobby Wagner on their team? Wagner is the best linebacker in football and I dare you to argue it with me. After his insane game on Sunday against San Francisco, Wagner has 100 tackles, 1 sack, 2 forced fumbles, and a beautiful interception that was run back 98 yards for a touchdown. Without question, he is in his prime and we as Seahawks fans are lucky to have him.
Among linebackers, Bobby Wagner has the highest grade in run defense, tackling, pass-rushing, and coverage. #Seahawks
The 2018 season for the Seattle Seahawks started out with a lot of pessimism. Media and fans had basically written this season off as a rebuilding season. A throwaway year as the team got their young players up to speed. But as we head into week 12, the Seahawks have proven that the team never bought into that narrative.
Seattle is smack dab in the middle of the playoff hunt after their win over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The team was determined to keep their win streak in Carolina, now having won in Carolina the last 4 times they’ve met there during the regular season. It was a must-win game if the Seahawks wanted to keep their foot in the postseason.
This win, along with the wins over Green Bay and Dallas, has the media changing their tune about Seattle. At the beginning of the season, Seattle was in the bottom 5 of the power rankings. Now they are top 10.