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Ten Thoughts on the NFL

NFL: New York Jets-Rookie Minicamp Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

1) One of the more popular options from the mock drafters for the Chicago Bears was LSU safety Jamal Adams. The Bears of course moved up a spot to nab Mitchell Trubisky, and Adams fell down to the New York Jets, who picked him sixth overall. The Jets doubled down on the position and picked Marcus Maye in the second round.

The Jets may have one of the worst rosters in the NFL, but they are embarking on a complete makeover of their roster, and the Adams, Maye duo is already looking legit. "I can't speak for other people's safeties on their team," Bowles said after Sunday's practice via "But for rookie safeties, from the average that I've been around, they're a lot farther along." Bowles went on to discuss these two starting this year, saying “we think those guys are ready to play."

2) Adams made some news for something off the field on Monday.

During a Jets’ fan forum, the discussion turned to concussions, CTE, and player safety, and Adams had this to say, "Literally, if I had the perfect place to die, I'd die on the field."

I totally get what he’s saying, and I understand the passion, but he still felt the need to clarify his comments a bit later.

"I can speak for a lot of guys that play the game," he said. "We live and breathe it. This is what we're so passionate about. Literally, if I had a perfect place to die, I would die on the field. And that's not a lie. There's so much sacrifice that we go through as a team, and just connecting as one and winning ball games. There's nothing like playing the game of football. But again, I'm all about making the game safer."

2a) From Martellus Bennett...

3) Staying with the Jets, some are accusing them of tanking this year, but commissioner Roger Goodell disagrees with that term saying, "I don't think any team tanks, I really don't."

"I think teams, depending on where you are, go through transitions. They are looking to sort of say, 'We need to build more talent here, we'll do it through the draft. Let's let some of our veteran players go and develop some of our younger players.' That's always been part of football. That's always been part of sports."

An organization may do everything in their power to assemble the youngest, most inexperienced roster, which would help them have better odds on a higher draft pick, but the players and coaches do everything they can to prepare to win games.

4) Back to the safety position, the Green Bay Packers plucked safety Josh Jones in the second round, and so far, he’s been one of their biggest play-makers this off-season. Jones (6’2”, 215) has that kind of chess piece skill set, that will allow defensive coordinator Dom Capers to move him all over the field. He can play safety, he’ll line up at inside linebacker and he’ll rush the quarterback.

It’s very early, but the 2017 NFL Draft seems to have a lot of safeties making waves in various NFL camps.

5) I’ll never forget a few years ago we had a frequent commenter that swore that Kam Chancellor was going to be one of the all time greats. So every time I see Chancellor in the news, I remember that WCGer.

The Seahawks are signing Kam to an extension for three years, $36 million, with $25 million guaranteed, and he is one of the best players in the NFL.

6) If I was a professional athlete, I think I’d hold off on the rock climbing, and water skiing, sky diving and off road ATVing.

Malik McDowell, rookie defensive lineman for the Seattle Seahawks, was recently injured in an ATV accident. While it seems the initial reports were worse than the actual injuries he sustained, how many times do we hear of players ruining their careers because of these off-field adventures?

There’s a fine line between enjoying life, and preserving one’s livelihood. With pro athletes having such a small earning window, waiting until it’s that window is closed is the best bet.

7) Bill Belichick is a very impressed with the scouting skills of the Patriots’ beat reporters.

He puts the camp experience into perspective quite well.

8) Then again, this is the time for optimism.

Kenny Britt, Cleveland Browns’ wide out, says of his rookie quarterback, DeShone Kizer, that “he's going to be one of the great ones.''

Carolina Panthers’ rookie running back, Christian McCaffrey, may catch a million passes in his career because he is uncoverable. His teammate Jonathan Stewart, says of the rookie, “I can tell you now there's not going to be anybody in this league that can cover him 1-on-1."

Chiefs’ corner, Marcus Peters, said his teammate, Tyreek Hill, “is one of the best receivers in our league right now." Hill, a second year pro, just finished his rookie year with 61 catches.

T.J. Watt, the Steelers rookie outside linebacker and brother of J.J., is already lining up with the starters, and the other starting OLB, Bud Dupree, had this to say about Watt. “I think he caught on faster than me. He does pretty good. He’s ahead in the playbook. I think it will be a great year for him.”

I know some fans are sick of hearing about how great this guy is, or how awesome that guy looked, but this is the time for optimism. Once the season gets rolling, there’ll be plenty of time for us to cry and moan about our crappy teams.

9) NFL helmet manufacturer Riddell, has debuted a brand new series of licensed collectible helmets, which so far at least, are only available as collectibles. There are no plans to rotate them into a color-rush type of thing that the teams are forced to wear.

Here’s the helmet for the Chicago Bears.


Is that orange Bears’ helmet ugly?

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10) Did you see this Bears related Tweet?

Yeah it’s corny, but football players eat this stuff up.

CSN’s Chris Boden caught up with Azzanni.

"Yeah, I give out those little green army guys. I give out one of those a day for our soldier of the day. And it doesn't have to mean making 18 catches. And you know what's funny? We go into those meetings and guys are like, `Who's got the Soldier of the Day?' Cuz they wanna line `em up on their desk. I mean, these guys are still kids playing this game. And we've got to make it fun, too. I'll let everyone else stress out about it, but we're gonna have some fun in there but also teach these guys how to respect this game, how to play it with a hard edge and make people change the way they think about NFL wideouts."

I had to ask. Is this coming out of his personal childhood collection?

"No it's just Amazon. Ten bucks (for a 144 pack)...I don't get paid what they get paid."

Our own Andrew Link, who was at Bears’ camp all weekend, mentioned the enthusiastic Azzanni to me when we recorded my latest T Formation Conversation.

What are some of your NFL thoughts this week?