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Ten Thoughts on the NFL

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Chicago Bears v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

1) NFL Quarterbacks get paid a lot of money.

Not just the good ones, but the mediocre ones too. That’s the nature of the position. The Atlanta Falcons gave Matt Schaub a 2 year deal worth $9 million. He’s 35 years old and he’s only thrown 93 passes the last three years.

Nick Foles just returned to the Philadelphia Eagles on a 2 year, $11 million deal, and the guy he’s probably replacing as their #2 QB, Chase Daniel, has an $8 million cap hit in 2017. Daniel has only thrown 78 passes in his entire seven year career.

Brian Hoyer just got $10 million guaranteed on his 2 year, $12 million contract from the San Francisco 49ers. But wait, there’s more! The ‘Niners liked ex-Bear quarterbacks so much, they gave Matt Barkley a 2 year deal worth $4 million and $500,000 guaranteed. Barkley went from being traded for a conditional 7th round pick in 2015, to being cut in 2016, to the Bears practice squad, to becoming a millionaire.

1a) You gotta hand it to Chicago offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains and the Bears offensive staff, their coaching and guidance just helped land Hoyer and Barkley $16 million dollars over the next 2 years.

The fact of the matter is, there simply aren’t 32 quality starting QBs in the NFL. If a veteran has shown anything during his time in the NFL, he’ll probably have a long career. If a young QB has shown even an ounce of promise, he’ll probably get a hefty paycheck from some team just in case they can develop him.

2) The New England Patriots are the defending Super Bowl Champs, and so far, they are winning the off-season too.

They lost tight end Martellus Bennett, but replaced him with the capable Dwayne Allen, in the exact same trade they used to get Bennett the year before. They traded for speedy wide out Brandin Cooks, who has averaged 81/1,156/8 the last two seasons. They also traded for Carolina edge rusher, 25 year old Kony Ealy, who had 5 sacks in each of the last two seasons. He has yet to break out in the NFL, but I have a feeling the Patriots will be able to get the best out of him.

They also added one of the top corners on the market, when they gave $40 million guaranteed to Stephon Gilmore, but they also brought back one of the top safeties on the market by re-signing Duron Harmon.

3) Speaking of Bennett, he’s moving on to the Green Bay Packers, and just like we saw with Bennett in New England, I expect him to play good football for the Pack.

4) Staying in the NFC North, the Detroit Lions made strides on their o-line, by adding T.J. Lang at right guard and Ricky Wagner to play right tackle. If they can improve their running game, I would not be surprised to see the Lions make back-to-back postseason appearances for the first time since the mid 90s.

5) Another NFL North team upgrading their o-line, was the Minnesota Vikings. They gave Riley Reiff (LT) and Mike Remmers (RT) a combined $88.75 million on a couple of 5 year deals, and $21.5 million guaranteed. Neither of these players are considered to be tops at their position, but they are both serious upgrades for the Vikes.

6) This graphic was interesting.

I think it shows that you gotta build through the draft, then plug roster holes via free agency. Teams that go nuts in free agency just don’t win games.

7) Ezekiel Elliott is a dumbass.

Whether Elliott pulling a woman’s shirt down was “all in good fun” or not, this is something you just do not do when you are a high profile celebrity. It doesn’t matter if he and the woman are friendly, it’s not a good look for him, the Dallas Cowboys or the NFL.

8) The Cleveland Browns are having a very good off-season so far. That trade for Brock Osweiler, where they basically bought a draft pick, was brilliant.

I think they’re either going to trade for Jimmy Garoppolo or go all in and take a quarterback with the 1st overall pick in the draft.

I think the days of the lol-Browns are over.

9) If the Denver Broncos do make a move for the soon to be released Tony Romo, I’d expect them to trade Trevor Siemian, who just finished up a very solid debut season at QB. They invested a 1st round pick in Paxton Lynch last year, so unless they don’t believe he’s the future, then I see no reason why they wouldn’t shop Siemian.

10) While I’m still not sure which direction the Chicago Bears will go with the 3rd overall pick in the draft, I have settled on my favorite pick, for now anyway.

Stanford defensive end, Solomon Thomas.

At 6’3”, 273 pounds, he’s not the ideal size for the 5-tech DE spot in the Bears defense, but I think he could be a Swiss Army Knife type of player for defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. He’s strong, he’s quick, he’s athletic, he’s technically sound and he has a non stop motor.

He’s athletic enough to line up as an outside linebacker or he could line up and rush the passer from the defensive tackle spot. He may not be able to play any 2-gap stuff at 273 pounds, but as a 1 gap penetrator, he may not have an equal on the 2017 Bears.

11) I was a guest on the Chase Thomas POdcast, and you can hear us talking Bears around the 45:30 mark. We talk free agency, Mike Glennon, Ryan Pace, Jay Cutler and more...