Aaron Hernandez had the world in his hands before throwing it all away for a life of crime:

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Photo credit: Jeffrey Beall

Author: Jon Kuzma

Aaron Hernandez was recently found with a shank in his prison cell and the former New England tight end’s story just seems to get darker and darker. Hernandez who is in prison for the murder of Odin Lloyd is also facing a double murder trial in Boston that is a separate case from the Lloyd murder. Not to mention Hernandez has been involved in two in prison incidents where he fought another inmate or was a look out man while a fight was happening. When you see Aaron Hernandez in news headlines these days you just turn your head and cringe. What if he would of chose the other route though? At one point stats wise Hernandez was just shy of Gronkowski numbers and the duo were nearly unstoppable. Hernandez over the length of his three year career averaged six touchdown receptions a season. If you factor in the experience he would of acquired in his later years of NFL action the guy could of consistently produced 10 touchdown reception seasons year in and year out. Could you imagine the Patriots offense with both of those tight end threats today? It just goes to show that the other route in life isn’t a more promising avenue. I bet Hernandez is wishing he shunned the “hard” mentality that he developed growing up in Bristol Connecticut now. He threw away millions of dollars to go sit in a prison cell and he still isn’t getting the message. It seems Hernandez’s troubles started to spiral out of control when his father passed away. Obviously the incident was very painful for Hernandez but we all go through things that we have a hard time getting through. That doesn’t give anyone the right to take another persons life. We only get one shot at this thing called life, Aaron Hernandez has to live that one life everyday regretting his life decisions. Don’t follow in the same foot steps.

 

What’s happening around the league week 13:

Author: Jon Kuzma

Rams plan to start Nick Foles

Case Keenum is still recovering from a concussion so the Rams have turned to previous starting quarterback Nick Foles to get the win Sunday. The Rams take on the Arizona Cardinals who have been playing outstanding football this year with a 9-2 record. Expect a heavy does of Todd Gurley to help make the job easier for Foles.

Coldplay will be Super Bowl half time performance

The NFL announced that Coldplay will be the halftime performance at this years Super Bowl 50 at Levi Stadium. The announcement has seemed to be followed by a mediocre response from football fans who seem so-so about the choice of Coldplay for the halftime performance. Sometimes we get ahead of our selves and write a performer off before even seeing the performance. It will be up to Coldplay to show us why they were selected and validate that selection. Right now personally it’s hard to be enthusiastic.

Mike Pettine announced Austin Davis the starter for Browns

Mike Pettine went all out in his hate for Johnny Manziel making sure he does his part in ensuring Money Manziel never starts during his coaching tenure. With Josh McCown out for the remainder of the season, Austin Davis has been named the starter from here on out. The move shows that Cleveland was never truly committed to developing Manziel as the starter. So one has to ask why did the Browns even draft him? We will see what Davis can do this week against the Bengals a tough start for former undrafted player out of Southern Mississippi. We’ll see if Davis can hold up in that match up. How ironic would it be if Manziel has to come in and be Pettine’s savior in that game after how poorly Pettine has treated Manziel in his two years in Cleveland.

Charity of the day: Ocean Conservancy

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Free play dooms Lions: Packers connect on walk off hail mary in Motown

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Photo credit: Mike Morbeck

Author: Jon Kuzma

The Green Bay Packers were able to come back from a twenty point deficit to beat the Detroit Lions on the final play of the game. A play that was an untimed bonus play due to a penalty committed by Devin Taylor just a play before. It was a play that could end up be the turning point of the season for the Packers. After starting the season red hot the Pack have looked awful in their last five games or so. Even half way through this match most people were writing the team off. You truly have to give credit to Aaron Rodgers and company for persevering and coming back to win this game. One thing that has been a bright spot for the Packers lately is the fact that running back Eddie Lacy has finally been able to get it going. Lacy has rushed for over a 100 yards in his last two games for Green Bay. Lacy is the same reason the Packers were able to make it to the NFC championship game last year. It’s imperative that Green Bay makes him the focal point of the offense after Aaron Rodgers’ passing game. That one two punch of Rodgers and Lacy is lethal for opposing defenses and is something to keep an eye on moving forward. Still the Packers are banged up and don’t look like a team who is ready to win the Super Bowl this year. The team clearly misses Jordie Nelson, but believe or not they are hurting even more on the offensive line. They lost their third starting offensive lineman tonight when center Corey Linsley went down. Leaving the team with limited options about who to fill those holes with. At the end of the day the Lions drop a game that they had in their grasp. While the Packers find a way to overcome adversity. Just another week in the NFL.

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If the Browns Do Draft a Quarterback in 2016, what Happens to Johnny Manziel?

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Photo credit: Erik Drost

Author: Joey Carr

With the exception of maybe Tim Tebow, there has never been, in the history of the NFL, a more talked about BACKUP quarterback than Johnny Football. Yes, he was a polarizing figure in college football for two years. Yes, he won the Heisman Trophy as a freshman. Yes, he does party and get into trouble more than the average human being. And yes, he is a backup, and at one point third string, quarterback for the most laughable and disappointing sports franchise of possibly all time: the Cleveland Browns. So why do we talk about him so much? Because the media made him a much bigger deal than he needed to be, which can, to a point, contribute to his immaturity and partying ways. Think about it: has there ever been, in any sport at any level, a spotlight bigger than the one unwillingly placed on Johnny Manziel after he won the Heisman? Maybe, but Johnny has to easily take the cake for this century. He was only a teenager when all of this scrutiny and limelight was bestowed upon him; it just seems natural that no teenager or 20-year old could handle that kind of pressure. So, Johnny turned to partying. And that’s not to say that he wouldn’t have partied a lot even if he didn’t have so much pressure, but the media certainly didn’t help the maturity of the young Browns QB. But, even with all of the glamor and media attention, Manziel finds himself on the backend of the quarterback totem pole for Cleveland of all places and with the NFL Draft coming up, the Browns might end up having to take yet another “Franchise Quarterback”. And if they do, what happens to the former TAMU Aggie?

I’m sure a lot of you are suggesting that Johnny should just cool down, lay low, pay his dues, and return to Cleveland for a third year and enter another quarterback competition during training camp. While that seems all nice and dandy, there’s one person that might throw a cog into that plan: head coach Mike Pettine. Pettine does not like Manziel at all, that much is clear. He refuses to let him develop as a starter and he’s constantly finding new ways to keep Manziel off the playing field. Of course, Johnny doesn’t make it easy on Pettine to let him get playing time with all of his off the field antics. For example: Just a couple of days after being named the full time Starting Quarterback for the Browns, a video surfaces of Manziel partying on the team’s bye week (week 11). The video shows Johnny holding stacks of money while clearly intoxicated, which violates his rehab probation. The Browns wasted no time in demoting the former Heisman winner to third string, effectively ending Manziel’s reign as starter after only one short week. However, after Josh McCown was sidelined with a collarbone injury after Monday’s dramatic loss to the Ravens, you would think, “Well now they have no choice to start Manziel. I mean who are they going to start instead, Austin Davis?” Well as it turns out that’s exactly what Cleveland did. That move makes it apparent that the Browns have no interest in furthering developing the young playmaker, thus raising the question, “What happens to Johnny in the offseason if the Browns draft a quarterback?” The answer is simple: Manziel gets shipped off to a willing buyer/risk-taker.

While it’s known that Johnny Football is a troublemaker, it’s also known that he is a natural playmaker. He can maneuver his way out of trouble in the backfield (if only he could do that off the field) and escape a sack better than almost anyone in the NFL. His passing is average, but can get much better if he’s given the opportunity to develop it. The Browns, clearly, aren’t interested in doing that. With an aging and injury-prone Josh McCown as their number one QB going into 2016, Cleveland might have no other choice but to take a quarterback given that they are poised for another high draft pick. There are a couple of appealing options that they could consider: Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma, Paxton Lynch of Memphis, Trevone Boykin of TCU, and the list goes on. Although, given their rich history of drafting quarterbacks in the draft, the Browns might want to steer clear of yet another wasted draft pick. But it’s the Browns, and if anyone can screw something up, it’s them (refer to Monday’s loss to the Ravens).

It’s obvious that Cleveland and Johnny Manziel aren’t a good fit, and perhaps never were. In the eyes of most NFL fans and experts, it would best for the two of them to go their separate ways and try to advance themselves without one another. The big question is, however, who would be willing to take a chance on the former Aggie? That question might soon be answered, and we might be seeing Johnny Manziel don some new colors and be partying in a new town come next fall.

Possible Landing Spots for Manziel (In order from most likely to least likely): Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins, Philadelphia Eagles, San Francisco 49ers, St. Louis Rams.

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Charity of the day: Global Fund for Women

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Battle of New York a much closer match than years past:

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Photo credit: Mike Morbeck

Author: Jon Kuzma

When the New York Jets and the New York Giants take each other on this Sunday in the Battle of New York, the match up will be much closer than in the past. Usually it’s the Giants who have the advantage heading into the game, the team who clearly has been the more significant New York team of recent. However it’s the newly led Todd Bowles Jets that come into the match up with a better record sitting at 6-5 on the season. Which leads one to believe that the Jets at the moment are the king of the big apple. In a city that Eli Manning has brought two Lombardi trophies back to. Gang green is all the talk of the town with their talented wide receiver duo in Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker. Along with their very stout defensive front which includes Muhammad Wilkerson, Leonard Williams, and Sheldon Richardson. One notable loss for the Jets however is the fact that the team will be without star player Darrelle Revis who is out nursing a concussion. For all the defensive pressure the Jets can get upfront it will be tough to win without key pieces on the back end like Revis. Especially when you factor in how truly talented the Giants are in their passing attack. While Peyton Manning has struggled this year and has been sidelined by injury. Brother Eli Manning has been striving, throwing for 23 touchdowns and 3,021 yards on the season. With talented wide receivers like Odell Beckham Jr., Rueben Randle, and Hakeem Nicks. The Giants can beat you a number of ways through the air. Will those key players be enough to get pass the Jets this Sunday? It’s hard to say, the game could really go either way. It will come down to which team wants it more and which team can execute better. Right now the trend tells you the Jets are going to win. However you should never count out Manning and the Giants. They’ve earned their respect through winning on the big stage. Regardless it will be a great match up this year at MetLife stadium.

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Charity of the day: World Vision Charity

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Week 13 Power Rankings

Panthers at Ravens 9/28/14

Photo credit: Keith Allsion

Author: Joey Carr

1. Carolina Panthers

2. New England Patriots

3. Cincinnati Bengals

4. Arizona Cardinals

5. Denver Broncos

6. Minnesota Vikings

7. Seattle Seahawks

8. Pittsburgh Steelers

9. New York Jets

10. Kansas City Chiefs

11. Houston Texans

12. Indianapolis Colts

13. Atlanta Falcons

14. Green Bay Packers

15. Washington Redskins

16. New York Giants

17. Chicago Bears

18. Buffalo Bills

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

20. Oakland Raiders

21. Jacksonville Jaguars

22. St. Louis Rams

23. Miami Dolphins

24. Detroit Lions

25. New Orleans Saints

26. Philadelphia Eagles

28. Baltimore Ravens

29. San Diego Chargers

30. San Francisco 49ers

31. Tennessee Titans

32. Cleveland Browns

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Charity of the day: World Vision Charity

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Ravens beat the Browns in stunning fashion on the last play of the game:

Saints at Ravens 8/13/15

Photo credit: Keith Allison

Author: Jon Kuzma

We’ve all heard it before, football is a game of inches. Yesterday’s match up between the Browns and Ravens was no different. On the last play of the game the Cleveland Browns lined up to kick a 51 yard game winning field goal. Only to have the kick blocked by Ravens’ defensive end Brent Urban. The ball was then scooped up by the Ravens’ Will Hill who took the blocked kick all the way to the end zone for a Ravens game winning score as time expired. The play left Cleveland fans demoralized after the Browns found yet another creative way to lose a football game. Finding ways to lose is almost a skill for the Browns considering the fact that the Ravens were without Joe Flacco and Justin Forsett, two of the Ravens top offensive players. Yet that didn’t stop the Browns from playing lackluster, losing starting quarterback Josh McCown, and keeping Johnny Manziel on the sidelines when McCown went down. The troubled quarterback out of Texas A.M (Manziel) was the Browns starter just a week ago before losing the Browns trust after a video of him partying was leaked. Regardless of Manziel’s choices off the field, he would of certainly gave the Browns a better chance to win the game over McCown and Austin Davis. As far as the Ravens go they deserve a lot of credit for coming into the game and doing what they were supposed to do. This team has struggled all season and to find a way to win with out Forsett and Flacco is good momentum for this football team moving forward. If they can improve a little bit on the defensive side of the ball and have a good offseason in free agency and the draft. This team might be able to take that next step heading forward next season. The rest of this year should be ironing out wrinkles for this Ravens team.

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Charity of the day: Humane Society of the United States

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Broncos knock off undefeated Patriots in overtime 30-24:

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Photo credit: Jeffrey Beall

Author: Jon Kuzma

The Denver Broncos were able to do what no other team in the league were able to do this far, beat the New England Patriots. In a game in which Tom Brady was able to throw for 3 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. It was the ability of the Broncos defense to make the Patriots offense one dimensional that really played a factor in the game. While Brady had success through the air, the Broncos D were able to completely eliminate the Patriots rushing attack. LeGarrette Blount was the Patriots leading rusher and he only had 27 yards on the ground. Also despite Brady’s three touchdown passes the Broncos defense were also able to sack Brady three times. And as we all know getting pressure on marquee quarterbacks is the key to beating them. This case was no different and the other piece of the winning formula was the Broncos rushing attack. Cj Anderson was able to contribute 113 yards and 2 touchdowns to the Broncos offense. His efforts were then complimented by Ronnie Hillman who rushed for 59 yards and touchdown. It’s tough to beat a football team that runs the ball effectively and plays solid defense. That has been the recipe for the Broncos success all season long. Believe it or not they also took a step forward with Brock Osweiler at the helm as well. At this point of his career the young passer provides the Broncos offense with more arm strength than Peyton Manning does. That youth has ignited a spark in the Broncos offense and the team is making more big plays down field through the passing game. It will be interesting to see if the Broncos stick with Osweiler when Manning returns from injury. It’s very likely that they will.

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Charity of the day: American Bird Conservancy

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Fitz magic wills the Jets pass the Dolphins 38-20:

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Photo credit: Marianne O’Leary

Author: Jon Kuzma

Ryan Fitzpatrick did his part today in the Jets win over the Dolphins throwing for 4 touchdowns and 277 yards on the day. After battling an injury on his non throwing hand which would ultimate lead to surgery. Fitzpatrick was able to bounce back in a big way leading head coach Todd Bowles to his sixth win on the season. The Jets are a completely different team from just a year ago and a legitimate playoff contender. The Dolphins found that out first hand today when the Jets defense were able to sack quarterback Ryan Tannehill 3 times and intercept him once. Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson led that defensive attack upfront each registering a sack apiece. It truly starts with those guys along with Leonard Williams upfront for the Jets defense. By pressuring opposing passers they can shake quarterbacks rhythm and timing. Allowing the Jets to tilt the odds in their favor. Offensively Chris Ivory had a decent day on the ground. Rushing for 87 yards and 1 touchdown in the game, truly giving the Jets offense a dual threat attack both through the ground and the air. Brandon Marshall who the Jets acquired via trade from the Bears this past off-season is justifying the teams decision to bring him on board. Marshall hauled in 2 touchdowns receptions and contributed 131 yards to the Jets offense. Showing he is as good as advertised. Eric Decker was also able to bring in a touchdown reception and 62 yards receiving. Keep an eye on whether or not the Jets can make a wild card spot down the stretch of the second half of the season. For the Dolphins they are facing another season of mediocrity. The Dan Campbell luster has worn off and the Dolphins problems from early on are showing their selves again.

Charity of the day: American Bird Conservancy

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Week 12 Picks

Week 12 Pics

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