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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Checking in on the Cincinnati Bengals

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

We don’t talk nearly enough about the Bengals here at OurTurf, so I figured I’d reach out to the experts.  In my search, I came across Ace Boogie on Twitter.   He’s a Bengals analyst and host of New Stripe City on YouTube.  The perfect person to talk to!  I asked him 5 questions to get the lowdown on Bengals Nation.

 

 

Bengals Analyst and host of New Stripe City on YouTube AceBoogie (@NewStripeCity)

Me:  How did the Bengals do in the draft?

Ace:  I think the sense around the NFL is that the Bengals did great. I’d have to agree with this because they really attacked fixing one of their biggest weaknesses by drafting [tackle] Jonah Williams.  [Tight end] Drew Sample was a bit of a head scratcher, but overall I think they did great. They were able to fill needs, add depth, and add character. One thing that changed was that they didn’t target any players with off-field issues and went after team captains.

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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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Wrapping up the draft for the AFC and NFC South

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

This week I’ll be looking at the AFC and NFC South and how they did with their drafts.  I’ll ask 3 questions about each team.  Did they address their biggest need? Who will have the biggest impact? What could 2019 look like?

Let’s start with the Indianapolis Colts. After having a pretty strong offensive line, quarterback Andrew Luck, and Pro Bowl tight end Eric Ebron, the Colts focused on defense.  7 of their 10 picks were defensive.

Who could have the biggest impact? Former Michigan State safety Khari Willis.  He worked hard and was an impact player.  I think he’ll fit in nicely.  2019 for the Colts?  If their defense lives up to its potential, it could be tough sledding for the rest of the AFC South.

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The 2019 NFL draft is almost here

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

What can I say about the draft that hasn’t already been said? Not too much. We’ve already had an infinite amount of mock drafts. There’s been tons and tons of speculation about whose stock is rising, and whose is falling. We’ve broken down pretty much every play from every game of the possible top 10 draft picks and then some. We’ve heard the different trade scenarios.

I know who I want my team to take, I know who I don’t want them to take.  I know that their GM has ideas of his own that could throw a wrench into my hopes and dreams, and I’ve

We’re all trying to look into a giant crystal ball to see how it’s going to shake out, but none of us know how it’ll actually will. Which is why this is my least favorite time of the NFL year. I’m sorry. I’ve tried to get around it, but I can’t.

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Do quarterbacks have to be leaders?

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

 

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

I’m taking a break from my quarterback series to discuss a trait found in some quarterbacks. Leadership.

Leadership has come into question quite a bit in the past month or so, especially among the quarterback position.  Specifically Aaron Rodgers and Ben Roethlisberger,   whose leadership skills have recently been called out.

Of course, this could be just some silly, off-season stuff to keep us talking.  If so, I fell for it. But it did get me to thinking, do quarterbacks really have to be good leaders?  I don’t think it’s a true requirement.  Respect, yes.  Leadership skills? I’m going to go ahead and say no, and this is why.

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Checking in on the quarterbacks in the NFC South

Sonja Greenfield, OTFB Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //  @Mom23RN

I’ve hit the NFC North and NFC East.  This week, I head down to the durrty south.

These quarterbacks are about as stable as they get, outside of Tampa Bay, and even that’s not that truly unstable.   Despite quarterback Jameis Winston‘s issues, he’s still in the mix.

So, lets look at Winston, Matt Ryan, Drew Brees, and Cam Newton and ask the question, “What will 2019 look like for these quarterbacks?”

Since I’ve mentioned Winston, let’s start with Tampa Bay.

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