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Ten Thoughts on the NFL

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Check out my latest version of Ten Thoughts on the National Football League...

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

1) The Carolina Panthers released corner Brandon Boykin just 2 months after signing him. Someone will need to let me know why no one wants the 25 year old, 5'10", defensive back. After being traded by the Philadelphia Eagles to the Pittsburgh last offseason, the Steelers decided to allow him to walk as a free agent after the 2015 season.

Boykin then sat for a couple weeks until the Panthers signed him, only to let him go after some rookie try out players impressed. From 2012-2014 Boykin allowed the 2nd best passer rating against him while playing nickleback at 63.1. Has his game regressed or is there something else going on?

2) Ex-rugby star turned San Francisco 49ers running back, Jarryd Hayne, is heading back to his original sport.

Hayne made a few highlights clip shows after his preseason last year, but he wasn't able to stick on the active roster full time. Hayne planned on giving the NFL and the Niner backfield another try in 2016, but a chance to play in the Olympics has led to him retiring from the NFL. The 28 year old is still in the prime of his athletic career, so it should be a seamless transition back to rugby.

3) If there were such a thing as an NFL Fan Free Agent, the latest from the Atlanta Falcons would be enough to sway some to become fans of theirs.

The Falcons are moving into a brand new stadium in 2017, the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, but it's not the fancy new building that is the exciting part. If you've ever gone to a live sporting event, you know the most expensive thing isn't the ticket, it's the food and beverages. But the Falcons now have at least some of their food and drink choices available at a very reasonable cost.

(They) will sell non-alcoholic drinks, hot dogs, pretzels and popcorn for just $2. Peanuts, pizza, nachos and waffle fries will go for $3. And a 12 oz. domestic beer -- the cause of, and solution to, all of life's problems -- will set you back a wholly manageable $5.

I'm ready for about 4 hot dogs, a pretzel and a bag of popcorn right about now...

4) The Arizona Cardinals are close to making Tyrann Mathieu one of the highest paid defensive backs in the game. Not bad for a guy that slipped to the 3rd round of the draft partly because of character concerns.

Success stories like his are why teams will continue to take chances on talented players.

5) Las Vegas is still in the running for an NFL team. If the Oakland Raiders don't relocate, the San Diego Chargers are still in play if they can't work out a Los Angeles deal. Market size could be a sticking point, but money ($750 million) could trump them being the 5th smallest market.

6) The Houston Texans' J.J. Watt, arguably one of the more popular players in the NFL, recently held his annual charity softball game at the Houston Astros' Minute Maid Park. Besides giving us this outstanding moment,

...the game itself actually outdrew 13 Astros' home games.

But most importantly, they raised nearly $2 million for Watt's foundation where "Our mission is to provide after-school opportunities for middle-school aged children in the community to become involved in athletics, so that they may learn the character traits of accountability, teamwork, leadership, work ethic, and perseverance, while in a safe and supervised environment with their peers."

I don't know how anyone could dislike J.J. Watt.

7) The Baltimore Ravens held a portion on their rookie minicamp in full pads, a clear violation of the NFL CBA. Baltimore is going to go with the "oops, my bad, we didn't know" excuse. I don't think it will work, so I would expect some sort of punishment or fine.

8) The heaviest projected offensive line in the NFL resides in Oakland for the second consecutive year. The Raiders' starting five weights an average of 327.2 pounds. The tallest on average is the San Diego Chargers at 6'6". SB Nation has it all in a nice sortable table, and in case you were wondering, the Chicago Bears check in with one of the lighter crews at 312.8 pounds, which is 9th lightest. The Bears tied with the shortest o-lines at 6'4".

8a) Here's another nugget about the Bears o-line, they are set to have the 7th youngest starting 5 in the NFL at a 25.8 average. The Tennessee Titans have the youngest (23.9) and the Philadelphia Eagles have the oldest.(29.8).

9) A lot of mock drafters had the Bears taking Clemson's Shaq Lawson with the 11th overall pick of the 2016 Draft. The Bears moved up for Georgia's Leonard Floyd, and Lwason fell to the Buffalo Bills at 19th overall. Yesterday the Bills announced that Lawson will need to undergo shoulder surgery and will miss about 4-6 months.

Imagine the fan backlash had the Bears taken Lawson, especially after last year's top pick has surgery on his shin.

And speaking of that guy...

10) Kevin White has yet to play a down in the NFL, but the 2015 first round pick of the Chicago Bears is being compared to two former Pro Bowl players. Chicago's new wide receivers coach, Curtis Johnson, coached the position with the Miami Hurricanes from 1996-2005 and he believes White has similar traits to a couple of his old players. Johnson said White is "big and physical and fast" like Andre Johnson (7 time Pro Bowler) and he has good "hands similar" to Reggie Wayne (6 time Pro Bowler).

It's tough to not become excited with the potential White has.