Tom Dundon shouldn’t be blamed for the AAF’s collapse. Dundon sank $70M into the league and gave the players seven more games than they should’ve had:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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It seems like Tom Dundon is the fall guy for the Alliance of American Football’s struggles but it’s very unfortunate that people would try to blame him for the league failing. The AAF nearly collapsed after their first week of action and it was Dundon who came to the rescue. Had it not been for Dundon then Charlie Ebersol and Bill Polian would’ve been under heavy scrutiny for failing to secure enough capital for such an enormous operation.


It’s clear the AAF’s expenses were racking up quickly and because Dundon tried to lend a helping hand he got burned for $70M of his own money. The problem with these startup league’s always comes back to one burden and that’s the financial challenges which are way too high of a mountain to scale. Dundon realized his new investment was a money pit and he couldn’t risk losing anymore of his wealth by trying to save a sinking ship. The players should all thank the Carolina Hurricanes owner (Dundon) because he at least gave them an opportunity to showcase their talent. Some of these players (Younghoe Koo, Garrett Gilbert, Rashad Ross, etc.) could wind up on NFL rosters and that wouldn’t have been the case if only the first games were played. Was it an ideal ending to a too good to be true situation? Not at all but there was some great moments and for the time being it helped a lot people put some food on the table. Ultimately the payroll is what doomed the Alliance and the only way this could’ve worked is with individual owners for each team. Otherwise the costs add up too quickly and everything spirals out of control. Tom Dundon is smart for getting out and his only mistake was getting involved to begin with. He lost a lot of money and his reputation took a hit.

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Tom Dundon shouldn’t be blamed for the AAF’s failure. All he tried to do was help and it ended up costing him $70M.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are loaded with offensive playmakers and Bruce Arians is an x and os mastermind. Which means Jameis Winston could have his best year yet:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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The Bruce Arians hire makes sense for Tampa Bay because he’s an x and os mastermind and the team is loaded with offensive players. Mike Evans is an elite receiver who’s gone over 1,000 receiving yards in each of his five seasons. O.J Howard is a 6’6’” 240 pound red zone target and his sidekick Cameron Brate is also a solid player. Then there’s emerging wide out Chris Godwin and it’s obvious they have a good nucleus in West Florida.


All of these tools will help Arians execute his game plan which will be facilitated by quarterback Jameis Winston. Being able to put those guys in a position to succeed is why offensive coordinators are so valuable in today’s game. The defenses in the NFL are so good that it takes a creative mind to strategize and create opportunities when it comes to designing plays. Jameis Winston will benefit so much from Arians scheming players open and everything should be much more crisp. Winston will have to stand tall in the pocket and make all of the throws and the Buccaneers are going to attack whatever formations their opponents throw out at them. So you can expect O.J Howard to run in between to the safeties on a cover 2 and Winston testing the corners when he has one on one coverage against a cover 3. It’s those little tactical advantages that should get the most out of Tampa Bay’s roster and because of that this offense will score plenty of points. Arians couldn’t have arrived at a better time for Jameis Winston but all of his struggles are in the past now. It’s about putting it all together moving forward and making a run at an NFC South title. Obviously that’s step one and then from there’s it’s about going on a deep playoff run. Of course a good start to all of this would be a win in week one over the Atlanta Falcons and Winston has to be the difference maker.

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Jameis Winston could have his best year yet with Bruce Arians calling the offensive plays.

Andy Dalton is on thin ice in Cincinnati after Mike Brown said the Bengals won’t extend his contract. Dalton has to prove he’s worthy of being a part of the team’s long term plan:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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After the comments Bengals owner Mike Brown made it sounds like Andy Dalton’s future is in doubt. Brown said they won’t give Dalton a contract extension in 2019 and it could mean Cincinnati plans on drafting a quarterback at the end of this month. The former 2nd round pick (2011) is starting to get up their in age and Dalton is already 31.


Proving that even if he does play well he’s still entering the back end of his career. Clearly Brown wants to start prepping another quarterback and eventually turn over the reins to someone he sees more fit for the position. If the Bengals want to pick a player in the first round it’s possible Drew Lock or Daniel Jones are available when the time comes. Kyler Murray and Dwayne Haskins should be off the board by then and truthfully it would be a miracle if Lock somehow fell into Cincinnati’s lap at the 11th spot. If they don’t like Daniel Jones then Brown will probably have to trade down and take Will Grier in the early 2nd second round range. Based on the fact that Dalton himself was a 2nd round pick when he came out of TCU it almost feels like this organization will want to go all in on the QB position and get the best player they can. Maybe they’ll get aggressive and move up to get Haskins or Lock. All of these choices spell bad news for Andy Dalton though and he’ll have to find another team to continue his career. It’s very possible that Dalton will be demoted to a backup quarterback job like Blake Bortles had to do with the Rams. Which means he needs to have a great season in 2019 or it could be the end of Dalton’s time as a starter in the NFL.

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Andy Dalton is on thin ice in Cincinnati and this could be his last year with the team.

Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley combined for 18 touchdowns last season and those two are hoping they can help the Atlanta Falcons take over the NFC South:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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Everyone knows Julio Jones is one of the best receivers in the NFL but Atlanta has another promising pass catcher in 2nd year receiver Calvin Ridley. Both players were coached by Nick Saban at the University of Alabama and it shows on the field. Jones and Ridley combined for 18 touchdowns in 2018 and they also led the Falcons to a top 5 passing offense (4th).


Atlanta still needs to improve their running game but they have a bright future with Matt Ryan, Jones, and Ridley making so many plays through the air. Each of these receivers has what it takes to get open and it’s so exciting to watch. Jones is a bigger guy and he does a great job on drag and flag routes. Those plays helped the 30 year old wide out rack up 1,677 yards. Nobody in the NFL had more and he’s the reason why Ridley always sees single coverage on the backside. Truthfully Ridley is no slouch though and he put up 821 yards and 10 touchdowns as a rookie. That proves how high of a ceiling the Falcons’ 2018 first round pick has. Hopefully if Thomas Dimitroff can clean up the other positions on this roster then the dirty birds should be able to get back to winning football. Most of the draft will probably be used on improving the defense and obviously that will keep their opponents from scoring. Which should give Atlanta an advantage because they know they can’t be stopped when they have possession of the football. This team is one franchise who could make a significant jump this upcoming season. There’s just so many weapons and it feels like they’re starting to trend in the right direction. After losing in Super Bowl LI to the New England Patriots it took a little bit before the front office started to get everything back in order. Because Dimitroff paired up Jones and Ridley there’s a lot more to be optimistic about and sooner or later that’s going to translate into wins.

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Atlanta Falcons are hoping their high flying offense can help them take over the NFC South.

Cam Newton is running out of time and he needs to overcome shoulder surgery. Carolina might start looking at other options if things don’t get back on track soon:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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We’ve all been blown away by Cam Newton’s athleticism at one point or another but things haven’t been working out in Carolina. Most of the pressure has fallen on head coach Ron Rivera but eventually Newton is going to come under fire for the lack of results the team has produced. Newton has flashed glimpses of the MVP caliber talent that he displayed in 2015.


However he’s been very inconsistent and his arm talent sometimes appears to be good more so than elite. To be fair there’s been games when Newton has been able to launch the football deep and the example that stands out is against the Saints in the 2017 NFC WildCard. With the shoulder injury though it feels like if Newton has one more down season then it could be the end of his time with the Panthers. New owner David Tepper has high expectations after purchasing the team and everyone’s job is being evaluated. It’s very possible Newton comes out and completely defies expectations but it doesn’t feel like there’s a good enough supporting cast to make life easier on their quarterback. In some ways Cam Newton is going to take the fall for some of this team’s problems but there were also moments he’s looked unfocused. Over time those small mistakes tend to add up and the former 1st overall pick isn’t the only QB on the hot seat. Matthew Stafford, Eli Manning, Andy Dalton, Marcus Mariota, and few others are in the same position. Proving it’s a make or break season for a lot of the passers around the league that we’re familiar with. Cam Newton has to understand this heading into the season and there’s no margin for error. Ultimately it will come to down to whether or not he can air it out from the pocket and beat teams by just throwing the ball?

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Make no mistake about it Cam Newton is running out of time and he needs to have a big year in 2019.

The Houston Texans should have Noah Fant and Hakeem Butler at the top of their wish list. Those two guys will give Deshaun Watson the help he needs:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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It’s no secret that the Houston Texans need to revamp their offensive line but they should hold off on fixing those problems with their first two picks in the draft. Instead Houston should start off by taking Noah Fant with the 23th overall pick. Jordan Thomas had some success as the Texans’ tight end a year ago but Fant is much better athlete. Those throws over the middle to the former Iowa tight end will make Deshaun Watson’s life much easier.


Plus Noah Fant ran a really good 40 yard dash time (4.50) so he has the ability to get behind the secondary and create some quick scores. The other guy the front office should key in on is Iowa State’s Hakeem Butler. With Will Fuller being a very injury prone player Houston can’t risk losing him for another season. Butler would be a weapon out wide who can provide an impact opposite of DeAndre Hopkins. Hakeem Butler is very good after the catch and he made a name for himself by breaking tackles and scoring touchdowns. Those are some of the same traits that made Terrell Owens special and Butler is also a fiery competitor. If general manager Brian Gaine goes in this direction then the Texans won’t have to worry about only scoring 7 points in the playoffs which is how much they put up in their wildcard loss against the Colts. It should also be mentioned that this organization has two second round picks so they can use that additional selection and the third round along with Matt Kalil to repair the offensive line. At least going this route will give this team a fighting chance when they get to January. Watson proved he can win the big game when the pressure is on at Clemson but he needs the right pieces around him to do it in the NFL. Fant and Butler are exactly what’s needed.

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Noah Fant and Hakeem Butler should be at the top of the Houston Texans’ wish list. Those two guys can help them take the next step.

Saquon Barkley is the most entertaining player in football and he’s the reason why the Giants could win 8 games this season:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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When you look at the New York Giants and what they did once Dave Gettleman took over the team it’s obvious that the front office was purging talent to clear cap space and to build a brighter future down the line. After shipping out Jason Pierre-Paul and Damon Harrison it’s clear the Giants should’ve taken a huge step back from where they were in 2017. Yet that didn’t happen and it’s because Dave Gettleman had one trick up his sleeve.


New York selected Saquon Barkley with the 2nd overall pick in last year’s draft and that move masked so many of this team’s problems. The Giants won 2 more games and scored 126 more points after adding Barkley to their offense. With the losses of Pierre-Paul and Harrison they probably should’ve been the worse team in the league too. It’s not hard to see what makes Barkley special when you plug in the tape. He’s a player who’s got tree trunks for legs and his speed blows just about anyone away. Add in rare ball carrier’s instincts and you have a player who can juke, spin, and hurdle his way to touchdowns. Trading Odell Beckham Jr. wouldn’t have been an option if Barkley wasn’t on this roster. Clearly Gettleman realized that New York would be better off built around the former Penn State running back’s attitude and leadership so he pulled the trigger on the Beckham Jr. deal. And once against the Giants don’t have to worry because Saquon Barkley is going to pour everything he has out on the field and change this franchise for the better. Will it happen immediately? Probably not because Dallas and Philadelphia are very strong right now. A good estimate of what the Giants can accomplish is an 8-8 record. Which will prime them for contention a year from now and it’s all because of Barkley.

Saquon Barkley is the most entertaining player in football and it’s because he’s a once in a generation athlete.

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The Dallas Cowboys know they have something special with Robert Quinn and Demarcus Lawrence as their defensive ends. A combination that could keep this team atop the NFC East:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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The NFC East is always one of the most competitive divisions in football and any team can end up coming out on top. However the Dallas Cowboys are relying on the pass rushing combination of Robert Quinn and Demarcus Lawrence to keep the Eagles, Giants, and Redskins at bay. Dallas just traded away a 2020 6th round pick to acquire Quinn so it was a cheap deal for a player who could provide a big impact in Rod Marinelli and Kris Richard’s system.


Quinn recorded 6.5 sacks during his one year stint with the Miami Dolphins but he still does a good job of getting to the quarterback. The Cowboys are going to line their new weapon (Quinn) up at right end and let him use his burst to beat left tackles. When he does make it the QB Quinn is also very good at striping the ball and creating fumbles. Those are plays that will change the momentum of football games and then you have Demarcus Lawrence on the other side. Lawrence went for 10.5 sacks in 2018 and he can beat offensive linemen in so many different ways. Which is why Jerry Jones is paying Lawrence $20M annually and on film that translates into speed and power that jumps out at you. Now the Cowboys’ opponents have to prepare for two elite edge players and it’s going to be so frustrating to game plan for both of those guys. Based on the potential this defensive line has it’s very possible that this division runs through Dallas. They still have Jaylen Smith and Leighton Vander Esch who will also be better with another year under their belt. So it’s going to be a tall task trying score against this group and we all know how tough it is to beat a team when you can’t put up touchdowns.

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The Dallas Cowboys know they have something special with Robert Quinn and Demarcus Lawrence. Those two are going to be tough to stop.

The Philadelphia Eagles trade for Jordan Howard and upgrade their offensive backfield. Howard has been one of the better running backs in football since entering the league back in 2016:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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Well we’ve been hearing rumors all off-season that the Chicago Bears were shopping Jordan Howard and now the Philadelphia Eagles have traded for the 24 year old running back. This is somewhat surprising for Chicago because Howard has averaged 1,123 yards per year over his first three seasons. Losing a player of this caliber will hurt the Bears chances of making it to the Super Bowl but it’s a big win for the Eagles.


Pairing up Carson Wentz and Howard is an upgrade over what the team had to deal with in 2018. Philadelphia was burning through running backs and defensive backs their last 16 games but Howard will take care of one of those problems. This is a player who can take on a heavy workload and pick up those tough yards when needed. So many times throughout his career Jordan Howard has been able to break a couple of tackles and takeoff for a big gain. What this does is it allows Philadelphia to cause defenses to sell out to stop the run. Which will open up those playaction passes for Carson Wentz and the Eagles wide receivers / Zach Ertz. There will even be times that Doug Pederson will be able to win contests by simply handing the ball off and pounding the rock 30 or 40 times a game. Jordan Howard will be the main guy and then you let Corey Clement, Josh Adams, and Wendell Smallwood sub in accordingly. Together that group will be much better off with such a complete running back leading the way and Howie Roseman once again steps up and works his magic for this franchise. It probably won’t be enough to get Philly back to the Super Bowl but at least they’re improving and that’s more than the Patriots, Rams, and Vikings can say.

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The Eagles bolstered their offensive backfield by trading for Jordan Howard.

The Minnesota Vikings have been one of the biggest losers during free agency and it feels like their run is coming to an end. Mike Zimmer could be on the hot seat before the 2019 season is over:

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Author: Jon Kuzma

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The Mike Zimmer era in Minnesota could’ve already seen their best days especially when you realize how bad their off-season has been. The Vikings didn’t make any significant upgrades in free agency and that’s probably because their cap space is limited after signing Kirk Cousins. With no room to maneuver financially this ball club is going to lose a step in the NFC North. Chicago, Green Bay, and Detroit have been much more active and they’re starting to leave the Vikings behind.


At the end of the day everything goes back to that Cousins deal and he’s the reason things went off the rails. Not only was the veteran quarterback too expensive but he hasn’t delivered on the field. Cousins can’t beat elite teams and Zimmer has to know he’ll be on thin ice soon. His only hope is nailing the draft and because he coaches defense that’s probably where his preference will be. Montez Sweat or Clelin Ferrell could be a few options they pursue with Everson Griffin’s career winding down. Dre’Mont Jones would also be a nice addition next to Linval Joseph. Then there’s the possibility that Rick Spielman goes with an offensive lineman to protect Cousins but that side of the ball feels like a lost cause with the wrong QB under center. Ultimately that will doom this team’s fate and it could result in Zimmer being fired. The Wilf family wants to win and they’re not going to wait around while their franchise begins to regress. Unfortunately because of the Vikings limited cap space everything seems to be heading that way. You have to wonder if the front office should tear things down now instead of trying to ride out a situation which has already peaked? Cutting Riley Reiff, Harrison Smith, Everson Griffen, and Kyle Rudolph would hurt in 2019 but it could give Minnesota a chance to turn things around in 2020. Otherwise Minnesota is settling for a wildcard loss at best and even that’s a little unrealistic.

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This current Vikings regime could be coming to an end. Mike Zimmer can’t improve his team and they’re on the verge of collapsing.

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