Demarco Murray Will Have to Fend Off Adrian Peterson this Time Around for the NFL Rushing Title:

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Photo credit:  Joe Bielawa

Demarco Murray was the most prolific rusher in NFL action last season. Rushing for 1,845 yards Murray was able to bring the rushing title back home to Dallas for the first time since 1995 (Emmitt Smith was that winner). A lot has changed since that time though, Murry now plays for the Cowboy’s rival the Philadelphia Eagles. He chose to sign with the team in the off-season via free agency. While the move was a shocker too many, the system will fit well for Murray who will undoubtedly get a majority of the touches. There is the threat of having to share a few carries with Darren Sproles, but those numbers should go down due to the fact that Sproles is beginning to age. With a zone blocking system in play Murray’s one cut style of running should blend well with Chip Kelly’s offense and you should look for a big year from Murray. There is one person however out there who might have the potential to dethrone Murray from NFL rusher immortality. His name is Adrian Peterson, the 2012 NFL rushing champion and the 2013 rushing champion runner-up. Peterson has been the standard of outstanding running backs nearly all of his career. After having to take a year off for some off the field issues, Peterson is back and poised to have another big season. It was reported that Peterson was unhappy with the Vikings all off-season and wanted to play with the Dallas Cowboys instead. Apparently the rusher has had a change of heart because he restructured his deal with the Minnesota Vikings and will continue his career in Minnesota. The reports from around the league coming out of Minnesota are also saying Peterson looks like he hasn’t missed a day. Looking like his old self at training camp for the Vikings. He’ll get his shot at cracking Murray and regaining his crown as the NFL’s best rusher. Something definitely worth keeping your eye on this season.

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Eli Manning Doesn’t Deserve to be the Highest Paid Player in the NFL:

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Photo credit:  Mike Morbeck

Look we respect Eli Manning at endzoneblog.com. We recognize that his two Super Bowl wins are more than his brother Peyton has accomplished. We understand that he did it in the spotlight of the New York media, which is the toughest in the world. We praise the fact that he had an outstanding Wonderlic mental aptitude test of 39. Which was smarter than Tom Brady, Andrew Luck, Aaron Rodgers, Phillip Rivers, Drew Brees and a host of other NFL quarterbacks (including brother Peyton). We like the fact that he passed for 4,400 yards last year and an outstanding 30 touchdowns. But despite all of that, the best player in the league should be making the most money. The best player at that position Super Bowl wins wise is Tom Brady. The best player at that position stats wise the last several years has been Drew Brees. Either one of those guys having those credentials and playing the most important position on the field (Even though Eli plays the same position). Would have merit if they were the highest paid player. The real unfortunate thing is Eli will likely get his contract and be the highest paid player in the league. That is the world we live in today. Where the latest contract out will always be the biggest contract out. Players want to test the boundaries of how much they can be compensated. On the opposite end owners want too outspend each other too prove they’re truly doing their due diligence for their team. We’ve seen this trend in nearly every other sport and football is no different.It’s a vicious cycle and it will ultimately reward Eli Manning, even though he doesn’t truly deserve it.

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Brock Osweiler: Making a case to be somebody’s quarterback of the future

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Photo credit: Jeffrey Beall

Remember last year? When Peyton Manning’s back up was frustrated because when he was supposed to get some playing time. Peyton Manning chose to go back in the game. Well that back up might have had a legitimate reason for being upset. Brock Osweiler the Denver Broncos lesser known second string quarterback had an impressive debut in his first football start since his collegiate days. In the teams first preseason game Osweiler completed 15 of 20 passes for a 151 passing yards and 1 touchdown. Commanding the offense smoothly and showing that he very well might be a number 1 quarterback in the National Football League. With his contract expiring at the end of 2015, Osweiler may have put himself in a position that will have teams knocking at his door come free agency. Maybe when that time comes a team like the Bills, Jets, or Texans will try to lure the young passer away. While you don’t want to rule out the Broncos re-signing Osweiler, and they have said he is a priority. It’s clear from his frustration last year that Osweiler believes he can play and would like a chance to play. If you have a chance to go some where else and start your own legacy or re-sign with Denver and sit around another year in Peyton Manning’s shadow what would you do? It’s an easy choice. Osweiler will likely choose to sign somewhere else and get his career as an NFL starter on its way. We’ve seen other back ups like Matt Schuab, and Kevin Kolb elevate themselves to starter status and then fizzle out. Hopefully Osweiler will be able to overcome the back up odds and be another example of a quality player just taking a little bit longer to develop. He’ll likely get the chance somewhere this off-season if he keeps performing well in the preseason. Keep an eye on him.

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Chargers made the right choice by re-signing Rivers:

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Photo credit: Keith Allison

The San Diego Chargers have to be happy about inking starting quarterback Phillip Rivers to a 4 year extension worth an additional 83.5 million dollars in total value to his existing contract. The deal will most likely keep lightning bolts on the signal callers helmet for the rest of his NFL career. Being able to spend all his NFL career in one location was something Rivers quoted as “special”. He went on to discuss how he grew up watching older players and how they always stayed with one franchise and was grateful he was able to do the same. Rivers admits that he has grown to love the community of San Diego, and would like to see the team stay in that area. Yet by signing this contract Rivers has committed to the team regardless of where they play in the future. Posting a career passer rating of 95.7 and 252 career touchdown passes, re-signing Rivers was clearly the best move for this football team. The other three quarterbacks on the Chargers roster Kellen Clemens,Chase Rettig, and Brad Sorensen are no where near the player that Rivers is. Nor do they know how to win at this level like Rivers does. Rivers would of been on the Chargers roster this year, but for future purposes it was still the right move to make this deal for San Diego’s front office. Now the team will be able to add playmakers at other positions during the draft and in free agency. Allowing the overall team talent to elevate. A process that would have been difficult if the Chargers had to waste a first round pick or big free agency money on a quarterback. The move will give the Chargers a long term plan and is another victory for General Manager Tom Telesco. Look for this team to again contend with the Denver Broncos for the AFC West division title and they should have a legitimate chance to return to the playoffs. It all starts with Rivers.

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Jadeveon Clowney must produce this year to avoid bust whispers:

 

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Photo credit: Instagram  Clowney_7

Jadeveon Clowney recorded only seven tackles in 2014. Seven tackles and he was the first overall pick in the 2014 draft. While maybe it’s unfair at this point to wonder if Clowney is indeed a bust. It’s clear that if he doesn’t produce more this year that there will be some validation to those “bust whispers”. The Texans are depending on this guy to come in and add another element to this defense next to the best player in the league in JJ Watt. Together the tandem playing together at an optimal level could be a dynamic pairing that could wreak havoc on opposing offenses for years to come. But in 2014 JJ Watt was the only partner in that duo that was holding up his end of play. It’s simple in order for Clowney to have success he must be on the field. While a major injury is something you can’t plan for, if there is even a chance you can play. You should play if you’re in Clowney’s shoes to prove that you’re committed to the Texans. They took Clowney number one overall to prove they’re committed to him, now it’s time that he proves he’s committed to them. Really to live up to expectations Clowney should register at least 7 sacks this year. While even if he has five you can say that is a start. We are talking about the number one overall pick here. Seven sacks from a number one overall pick is a legitimate goal. We all know the guy was a star in college but there were also some concerns with the guy’s character. As an outsider looking in on the situation one thing that quickly stands out is no matter if he plays or not, the guy is the center of attention. So he has no repercussions if he doesn’t play. The jury is still out if Clowney is a real football player at this level and is serious about playing in the National Football League. Maybe a couple months from now we will look back and laugh at this post for ever being written. Only time will tell.

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