If the movements of a team during free agency is indicative of the final results (the jury has been out on that for years), the two teams in the Super Bowl will be the 49ers and the Browns…
Look, both teams were bad last year. We know that. The Browns could muster a win and have a couple of picks in the top 5 of the first round (1 and 4). The 49ers didn’t win until they put Jimmy Garapolo in at the end of the season. But they have not been languishing in their mediocrity.
Actually, you can say that they would have been happy with mediocrity, because they were that bad. But look at the roster moves that the two teams have managed before the league year began on Wednesday. Each team has begun to amass playmakers via trades and with splash signings in Free Agency.
Can a team go from worst to first (The Browns)? If they make the right picks in the draft, they have the capability to make life miserable for the rest of their division. It all depends on how well the players buy in to the vision of the head coach.
The 49ers have shown with their new GM, John Lynch, that they are willing to build a better team through smart drafting and trading. The players who come to San Francisco are coming because they see the leadership of the quarterback, the coaching staff and the ownership. This could be a year where the 49ers could overtake the cap strapped Seahawks and the Quarterback needy Cardinals, and give the Rams powerhouse a run for its money. Even if they don’t win the division, they could still make the playoffs as a wild card and then run the table (stranger things have happened).
Whether you agree or not, a lot of teams look great on paper during the off season. If the 49ers and Browns are not the best two paper teams this season, leave a comment below and let us know who you think will make the Super Bowl based on current rosters (and the upcoming draft picks).
As OTAs wrap up and teams gear up for training camp, a surprisingly high number of NFL teams are having a “quarterback conundrum”, either overtly or covertly. Let’s take a look at some of the teams that are still up in the air on choosing their starting field general.
The Cleveland Browns made headlines much more often than they cared to last season due to Johnny Football‘s on-field and off-field antics. The Brown’s wisely signed quarterback veteran Josh McCown. Manziel has seen marked improvement after rehab but according to NFL.com, McCown would “have to crumble during training camp to lose his grip over the starting gig”. I believe Manziel will see significant action this season and if he has a solid performance in training camp and shows a dedicated attitude, he could still be the Brown’s starter. Everyone love’s to see a comeback kid.
Next up, we look at the Buffalo Bills. New head coach Rex Ryan is playing it cool, but the Bills are in trouble. Last season was a disaster with E.J. Manuel, who had a 80.3% rating, threw for 838 yards with 5 TDs, 3 interceptions and a fumble. (stats obtained by espn.com) The Bills pulled Manuel and began using Kyle Orton as starting QB for the rest of the season, but Orton is gone now. So it’s a three way battle between Manuel, Matt Cassel and Tyrod Taylor. Ryan is taking his time with a decision, stating on 6/10/2015 that he will go into training camp to see the guys practice in full pads before making any decisions.
The New York Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey announced on 5/20/2015 that Geno Smith would return as the starting quarterback. However, since that announcement there has been an uptick in chatter about Ryan Fitzpatrick, the journeyman QB the Jets traded a draft pick to the Texans for. “Fitzy” has been seeing a lot of first team playing time in recent OTAs and Jets quarterbacks coach Kevin Patullo is impressed with his pocket presence.
With the Houston Texans trading Ryan Fitzpatrick, they have to decide between Ryan Mallett and Brian Hoyer, who they acquired from the Cleveland Browns. In a 5/14/2015 SB Nation poll, 82% of respondents voted for Mallett while 18% voted for Hoyer, so it is clear who the fans would like to see as starting QB. Head coach Bill O’Brien stated on 6/10/2015 that he will make the decision very soon because the entire team needs to know who the leader is going to be.
So there you have it. These are just four of the teams struggling with quarterback decisions. The NFL 2015-2016 season is certainly shaping up to be another wild ride! Do you think it is possible for a team without a clear leader at QB to make it to the playoffs? Lets hear what you think on our Fan Page or in the comments section below!