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Ten Thoughts on the NFL

NFL: Preseason-New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

1) NFL fans often overreact after one preseason game, and by fans, I mean fans of all teams. Every fan-base has their version of the ‘sky is falling,’ ‘oh no we’re gonna suck,’ ‘let’s blow up the roster,’ fans. So if you’re a more mild mannered, ‘let’s wait and see’ type of fan, wondering why some fans of your team are so over the top negative, you aren’t alone.

Me, I like to wait until after that first drive of the first regular season game to determine if I should write the season off or not...

2) It’s not just fans that often overreact to the preseason, some members of the media lose their minds too. Sure they preface their comments with a ‘It’s only one game but,’ but they still write something that caters to the negative fans.

Here are a few things I learned from the media about the 1st slate of preseason games.

  • Brock Osweiler isn’t worth the money the Texans paid him.
  • The Patriots should probably trade QB Jimmy Garoppolo.
  • Miami’s offense is going to be horrible.

3) The preseason overreactions aren’t just slanting negative, here are a few things I learned with a more positive vibe.

  • The Titans running game is going to be powerful!
  • Cowboys rookie QB Dak Prescott is going to solidify Dallas’ back up situation and he could be the QB of the future!
  • Seattle tailback Christine Michael, who has less that 500 yards rusing in his 4 year career, is going to be a break out star!

4) The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were widely criticized when they traded up to pick Roberto Aguayo, a kicker from Florida State, in the 2nd round.

During his collegiate career, Aguayo never missed an extra point, nor did he ever miss a field goal from closer than 40 yards. He was about as automatic a kicker that has ever played college football.

So of course he would miss the first kick of his NFL (preseason) career.

Yeah, I just shared a clip of a missed extra point, but the clip is worth it just to see the dumbfounded look on the face of Eagles new defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz after his D gives up a TD.

5) So Robert Griffin III to Terrelle Pryor might be a thing for the Cleveland Browns.

RGIII is trying to revitalize his career, while Pryor is trying to be a legit option as a receiver after being drafted as a quarterback in 2011.

6) The Los Angeles market finally has football back! Now Rams’ fans will need to take out a loan to pay for parking...

Unfortunately, these ridiculous prices are pretty much the norm these days. This is a big reason why I’m perfectly fine enjoying the game from the comfort of my couch.

7) One of the most dynamic running backs in the NFL, Jamaal Charles, is off the PUP list and back practicing with the Kansas City Chiefs. Charles has a career 5.5 yards per carry average in his eight years, 5th all time in the history of the NFL.

Last year he averaged 5.1 ypc before going down with an injury, but coming back from an ACL tear is always tough. The Chiefs will undoubtedly ease him back into the lineup with Charcandrick West and Spencer Ware still on the roster.

8) Some Chicago Bears’ fans and analysts were perturbed that Denver Broncos’ defensive coordinator Wade Phillips was blitzing the Bears in the 1st preseason game. They thought is was a touch bush-league to come at the Bears in a more complicated manner, when teams are all so vanilla in the preseason opener.

Phillips took to Twitter to school those that thought he was to aggressive.

Phillips tweeted that five of the Broncos’ sacks were on four-man rushes, and the other two sacks were on five-man rushes, while none of the sacks were on actual blitzes. The pinned top tweet on Phillips’ Twitter feed is an attempt to explain the distinction between “blitz” and “dog.”

“Funny how ‘experts’ don’t know a blitz (six rush, five cover eligible receivers) from a dog (five rush, six cover) — there are also pseudo blitz and dog schemes,” Phillips wrote.

So dog schemes aren’t commonly known as blitzing?

Check out this article about Phillips’ green dog blitz scheme that he used in the Super Bowl.

I agree that rushing 5 isn’t always technically a blitz, but the way a coordinator disguises a pass rush (zone blitz, delayed blitz, dog blitz, etc...) are commonly referred to as blitzes.

9) Our sister site, Pats Pulpit, has a real nice Xs&Os breakdown on how the Patriots used ex-Bear DE/OLB/ILB Shea McClellin that you can read right here; Film Review: How the Patriots used Shea McClellin in a fun, new way.

What if N.E. head coach Bill Belichick has found a way to reap the rewards of all those position changes the Bears put McClellin through?

What if it’s all finally clicked for Shea, and he’s ready to be a Swiss-Army Knife for the Patriot D?

Nah... It’ll never happen.

10) With Chicago Bears’ corner Kyle Fuller missing the trip to New England for the joint practices with the Patriots, I wonder if one of their other young corners will take the opportunity and make the most of it.

Practicing against a well oiled offense like the Pats will be huge for Chicago’s D. It’s hard to replicate live game speed practicing with yourself, but against another team, the competitive juices begin to flow and the intensity ramps up.

Youngsters like De'Vante Bausby, Jacoby Glenn and Deiondre' Hall will take some lumps playing against Tom Brady, but the experience gained will be worth it.