Pro Player Insiders Executive Editor Melissa Mahler http://proplayerinsiders.com Behind the scenes look at lives and lifestyles of NFL players and their families plus sports news, interviews & events Thu, 15 Nov 2018 23:38:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 Thursday Night Preview- Packers vs Seahawks http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-packers-vs-seahawks/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-packers-vs-seahawks/#comments Thu, 15 Nov 2018 23:38:55 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173889 As the season gets closer to December, the NFL Thursday Night games have gotten better. Last week, Carolina and Pittsburgh battled in a matchup of 2 teams fighting to make the playoffs. Now this Thursday we have a battle of two teams that have not only been in the playoffs consistently for the last few seasons, but needing a win to continue that reputation. Green Bay enters the game led by Aaron Rodgers and an offense that has weapons everywhere. Seattle comes into this game at home, fresh off losing a heartbreaking game on the road in Los Angeles on Sunday. So let’s take a look at what to watch for in Seattle on Thursday night.

1. Green Bay needs to give Aaron Jones the ball and let him go to work

Do you know who leads the NFL in yards per attempt? It’s not Todd Gurley III, Kareem Hunt or James Conner. It’s the Packers newly found stud Jones. He’s averaging 6.8 yards per rush this season and 6.1 per attempt over his 2 season career. The one thing about Jones is that he doesn’t have a lot of big runs this season. If you look at his game this season, with the exception of the Miami game where he had a 67 yard rush, he hasn’t had a carry longer than 33 yards. His ability to get 6 and 7 yards a carry will make things easier for Rodgers especially against the Seahawks defense. Jones has 28 carries for 1st downs on his 73 attempts in his 7 games he has played.

The real issue has been the number of a carries that Jones has gotten. He hasn’t had a game where he’s had more than 15 in a game. The Packers need to make a conservative effort to put the ball in this playmakers hands. If Aaron can get the ball, he can do some real damage. The Seahawks gave up 149 yards to the Rams last week and have giving up 160.3 yards a game at home this season on the ground.

2. Seattle has to find a way to stop the Packers from scoring in the 4th quarter.

The Seahawks have made their living in the Pete Carroll era on its defense. It’s how they have maintained their ability to be one of the most consistent teams in the league. But this season it hasn’t been that way. Especially in the final quarter. Seattle is giving up 8.4 points per game in the 4th quarter. This is a huge contrast to last season when they were the league’s best (4 points per game). Now the defense has had its losses when it comes to personal, but if they are going to make a final push for the playoffs, this has to be fixed immediately.

Seattle can’t just build a lead and allow Rodgers, Jones, Devonte Adams and former Seahawk Jimmy Graham the ability to not only erase the lead. But allow them chances to win the game. This will be interesting because with all of those weapons, the Packers are averaging scoring only 4 points per game on the road in the final 15 minutes this season.

3. Watch Russell Wilson in the 2nd Quarter

Everyone knows how dangerous Russell Wilson is with his arm and his feet. But in the 2nd quarter this season he’s been almost perfect. During this one quarter, Russell completes 73% of his passes and averages over 10 yards an attempt. 31 of his 58 completions have been for 1st downs and he’s thrown 7 of his touchdown passes in that quarter. That just adds on to the fact that he hasn’t thrown one interception and only has 21 incompletions in their 9 games this season.

So to say that if the Packers can survive this quarter, things have been better for defense in the remaining quarters. Wilson has thrown all of his interceptions after halftime.

Prediction:

They have played 6 times during Wilson years. It’s tied at 3 victories a piece. They have played some classic games, but tonight has a chance to be one of them. Expect the Seahawks to try to control the clock to keep the ball out of the two Aaron’s hands. But the Seahawks will have the home field on their side and there is nothing more dangerous than Wilson with his back against the wall. Watch Wilson throw for 2 touchdowns and rush for one and they make sure that Rodgers won’t have a chance to win in the 4th quarter.

Seahawks 24 Packers 17

 

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LA Rams give away ‘MNF’ tickets to first responders, victims of wildfires and mass shooting http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/la-rams-give-away-mnf-tickets-first-responders-victims-wildfires-mass-shooting/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/la-rams-give-away-mnf-tickets-first-responders-victims-wildfires-mass-shooting/#comments Wed, 14 Nov 2018 03:22:58 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173879 The NFL announced on Tuesday that the Kansas City Chiefs-Los Angeles Rams game scheduled for next Monday night has been moved from Mexico City to LA due to poor field conditions at Estadia Azteca.

Now with an additional home game, the Rams confirmed they are providing thousands of complimentary tickets for Monday night’s game to “first responders who are bravely protecting the greater Los Angeles community, as well as people who have been impacted by our community’s recent tragedies.”

Just last week, 12 people were killed in a mass shooting at a bar approximately four miles from the Rams’ facility in Thousand Oaks, CA. Additionally, the city has been battling wildfires that have burned over 100,000 acres of land resulting in destroyed homes and businesses, evacuations, and two fatalities. The fires also caused the Rams to cancel practice last week as some players and coaches were forced to evacuate their homes. As of now, the fire is only 35 percent contained.

The Rams’ gesture is good news for an area that has dealt with two major tragedies in a short period of time. Monday night’s much anticipated matchup will be a faceoff between the NFL’s most talked about quarterbacks this season: Jared Goff and Patrick Mahomes. Both the Rams and Chiefs are 9-1.

Follow us for more articles: @CaritaCParks, @playerinsiders.

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Larry Fitzgerald moves to Number 2 All-Time http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/larry-fitzgerald-moves-number-2-time/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/larry-fitzgerald-moves-number-2-time/#comments Sun, 11 Nov 2018 20:43:04 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173865 With an 15-yard catch late in the fourth quarter Larry Fitzgerald surpassed Terrell Owens for second most receiving yards in NFL history.  Owens finished his illustrious career with 15,934 yards.

In his 15 year career, Larry Legend has caught touchdowns from 15 different quarterbacks, but if you’re a Cardinals fan, somehow it feels like that number should be higher.

Fitz may never catch Jerry Rice’s 22,895 yard record but if you’ve followed Larry throughout his career you would know that isn’t important to him. He’s the epitome of what a teammate should be and would trade in all the records if it meant winning.

Enjoy it fans, human beings like number 11 only come around once in a lifetime.

Congratulations to you, Larry Fitzgerald.

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Drew Brees Surpasses Favre on All-Time TD List http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/drew-brees-surpasses-favre-time-td-list/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/drew-brees-surpasses-favre-time-td-list/#comments Sun, 11 Nov 2018 19:47:15 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173872 Late in the second quarter Drew Brees threw a touchdown pass to Michael Thomas, surpassing Brett Favre for second most passing touchdowns in NFL history.  Brees currently sits at 509 career touchdown passes, 30 away from Peyton Manning’s all-time leading 539. Drew will certainly have many more touchdowns this season so should he decide to play one more year he will likely take over the number one spot.

In his 18 year career, Brees has played for two teams. He spent his first five years in San Diego where many thought his career would end early do to shoulder injuries. All he’s done since then is have 13 amazing years in New Orleans while rewriting the record books. Earlier this year Brees surpassed Manning for most passing yards all-time.

Congratulations to you, Drew.

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Bills vs. Jets Preview http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bills-vs-jets-preview/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bills-vs-jets-preview/#comments Sun, 11 Nov 2018 18:26:14 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173863 The Buffalo Bills will give another quarterback a chance, their newly signed Matt Barkley will have a chance to compete against the New York Jets.

Barkley in his career has eight touchdowns and 18 interceptions. If you’re looking for a Nathan Peterman upgrade, this probably isn’t one. While the Bills wait out the healing process for Josh Allen, this may be the best they have to offer.

On the other side of the football is quarterback Josh McCown, a player that’s taken on a leadership role with the Jets. He will be starting Sunday while Sam Darnold nurses an injury.

Here are a few things to watch for in Sunday’s upcoming matchup:

Tremaine Edmunds returns:

Edmunds has clearly been a fan favorite of Bills Mafia thus far. His return should help maintain the defense’s great play. This matchup in particular could be a game that the defense could actually win, as long as Barkley can avoid turning the ball over.

Jets offensive line:

The 39-year old McCown will need his protection. The Bills defense is among the best in the NFL at applying pressure to the quarterback. If the Jets expect any success this weekend, it will have to begin and end with their offensive line.

The kickers:

By no means is either team considered talented at the NFL level on offense. Bills Stephen Haushka and the Jets Josh Myers may be in for a duel if neither team can find the endzone.

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Pick Six: Tennessee Titans vs New England Patriots http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/tennessee-titans-new-england-patriots-2/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/tennessee-titans-new-england-patriots-2/#comments Sat, 10 Nov 2018 21:59:37 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173851 The Tennessee Titans stopped the bleeding last Monday night when they went to Dallas and pulled out a win. The game started rough for them, but they eventually got things going on both sides of the ball. After that big win, the Titans return home and now face the depending AFC Champions, the New England Patriots. For some former Titans players and even the coach, this will be a surreal feeling going against the team they gave their blood, sweat and tears for at one point in time. It will be interesting to see not only how the Titans respond to the level of competition and for the former players, it will be interesting to see how they go at their former team. Here are six keys to them being successful in their pursuit of another win.

 

Offense

1) Keep that energy Marcus

Marcus Mariota started the game rough against Dallas, but as the game went on he got better. He made plays with his legs and feet like he is capable of doing. That type of performance was against a defense that was highly ranked in the NFL. The Titans need Mariota to be that same player again this weekend versus the Patriots. Not only do they need that same performance, but they need Marcus to be ultra-aggressive going at the Patriots defense and decisive when he decides to pull it down and run the football.

2) More Dion Lewis please

Before the season, everyone was excited imaging how Derrick Henry was going to do as the starting running back for the Titans. Well, it seems like his backup Dion Lewis has stole the show and quite honestly, he fits this offense better and the offense looks better with him out there, as evidenced by his play last week. This week, the more Lewis is in the game, the better the Titans’ offense will be. It’s about wins not who plays, but Lewis’  play gives them the best chance of winning.

3) Finish drives

The Tennessee Titans finally got in the endzone last week for the first time in what seems like forever. This week, they need to carry that momentum over. The Patriots are known as a defense that gives you things within the 20 yard lines but stiffens up in the red zone. For the Titans to have their best chance of winning this game, they have to finish those drives with touchdowns and not field goals. Tom Brady is on the other side and points will be needed.

 

Defense

1) Can the real Malcolm Butler show up?

Malcolm Butler was talked about as a good signing for the Titans defense. Well, the only thing that has happened well for him this season is biting on the double moves he has been given. Each game this season we have seen him get beat for a big play or touchdown and it has become a pattern. Against a team that knows him very well, that could happen again. Hopefully Butler has watched the film and will revert back to top form. If he doesn’t, Brady will definitely target him in the passing game over and over and over again.

2) Pressure up the middle

Tom Brady is one of the greatest quarterbacks of all-time and there is no denying it. There aren’t many ways to stop him, but one that can at least slow him down is pressure and more specifically, pressure up the middle. When Brady faces pressure outside, he usually steps up and makes the necessary throw. With pressure coming up the middle, Brady then has to escape outside the pocket and we all know he isn’t exactly great when throwing on the run or outside the pocket. Guys like Jurrell Casey and Austin Johnson could be huge in the outcome of this game.

3) Find James White

Plenty talk about the addition of Josh Gordon at wide receiver or Rob Gronkowski’s presence on the field, but the guy the Titans need to find is running back James White. The talented running back is also a dangerous weapon in the passing game. He can be just as dangerous as any weapon Tom Brady has and over the years, running backs like Shane Vereen and Kevin Faulk have been great safety valves for Brady and White has become that guy. The Titans linebackers and safeties have to be aware of where he is at all times and make sure to make life a little more difficult for White when he’s on the field.

The Titans are underdogs once again, but they seem to be comfortable in this role. And after how they played against the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles, you could see them step up and play well with the level of play rising. Only time will tell, but it will be interesting to see if the momentum from Monday night carries over.

 

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Bruce Arians to call Cardinals vs Chiefs http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bruce-arians-call-cardinals-vs-chiefs/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bruce-arians-call-cardinals-vs-chiefs/#comments Fri, 09 Nov 2018 04:42:18 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173842 Coming off of their bye week, Arizona is headed to Arrowhead Stadium to take on the red-hot Kansas City Chiefs. In the coming days you won’t hear what a good matchup it will be. On Sunday morning you won’t see or hear any of the experts picking the Cardinals – not even as their upset pick of the week. The Cardinals are 2-6 and both of those wins have come against the same Jimmy Garoppolo-less San Francisco 49ers. What you might hear is how the only thing the Cardinals have a chance at winning this week is the coin toss. Well, the Chiefs have won 12 straight coin tosses too!

The Chiefs are 8-1 and haven’t lost a game at home (4-0). Even when the Chiefs are bad, going in to Arrowhead and coming away with a win is a tough task. As if the Cardinals offense hasn’t had a hard enough time already, this week they will also have to deal with the loudest fan base in the NFL.  Arrowhead Stadium can be deafening to opposing teams. Back in 2014, Chiefs fans registered an incredible 142.2 decibels – an eardrum can rupture at 150.

There’s only a few ways to quiet the home field advantage and to do that the Cardinals will need to string together some first downs and score points. The only other way is to get blown out early. A few weeks ago the Cardinals got embarrassed at home on Thursday Night Football against the Denver Broncos. Denver jumped out to a 35-3 halftime lead and even the sea of Broncos fans got bored and began to simmer down.

To silence this crowd, look for new Offensive Coordinator, Byron Leftwich, to spread the offense and attack a Chiefs defense that has been susceptible to the pass. The Chiefs have given up more pass yards than any other team in the NFL (2,724). After the Bronco beat down, the Cardinals let Mike McCoy go play golf and Leftwich took over play-calling. Leftwich earned a win in his first game and rookie quarterback Josh Rosen threw for 252 yards on 40 attempts – both season highs. Rosen isn’t buying in to the idea that the Chiefs have a bad pass defense, though. “I think a lot of those numbers are a little bit deceiving because, I mean, they’re up by like 30 in half their games”, Rosen said.  “A lot of the times they [defense] are just playing back, letting the offense do what they want to do and trying to bend not break.”

Patrick Mahomes

Head Coach Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes (QB)

Rosen is right. Chiefs Head Coach, Andy Reid, and his emerging superstar-quarterback, Patrick Mahomes,won’t mind a shootout. When it’s all said and done, they have more weapons than you. Wide receiver Tyreek Hill, tight end Travis Kelce, and running back Kareem Hunt are all stars in their own right. Mahomes leads the NFL in passing yards (2,901) and touchdowns (29). Hill and Kelce are both in the top 10 in receiving yards – Kelce leads all tight ends – and Hunt has the third most rush yards in the league. Hunt already has 13 touchdowns on the season – the entire Cardinals offense only has 12. Pick your poison, Arizona.

Kansas City Chiefs vs New York Jets

Travis Kelce (left), Kareem Hunt (center), Tyreek Hill (right)

For the Cardinals to stand a chance, simply winning the turnover battle won’t be enough. They’ll need those turnovers to lead to points and will need big plays on defense and special teams. Look for the Cardinals defense to be extra aggressive this Sunday. With nothing to lose, why not?

Former Cardinals Head Coach, Bruce Arians, will be calling the game for CBS. It’s no secret that Arians wanted to draft Mahomes in the 2017 NFL Draft before the Chiefs ultimately jumped Arizona and snagged him with the 10th overall pick. It will be a matchup between the guy he almost had verses the guy he would have had if he decided to stay with Arizona for another year. Bruce may have not brought a ring to the desert, but after what Arizona has endured this season, the sound of his voice will certainly have fans reminiscing.

Kickoff is scheduled for 11am (MT) and the Chiefs are favored by 16.5 points. Sheesh.

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Thursday Night Preview: Panthers vs Steelers http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-panthers-vs-steelers/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-panthers-vs-steelers/#comments Thu, 08 Nov 2018 23:38:54 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173836 On Thursday night, the NFL gets a chance to showcase two of the better teams in the league in primetime. The AFC North’s top team the Pittsburgh Steelers take on the NFC South’s Carolina Panthers in a matchup between two teams that would be in the playoffs if it started today. Lets take a look at a few things you should keep an eye on as both teams will try to continue their winning ways.

1. Cam Newton has to have a rushing touchdown

Carolina Quarterback Cam Newton might be having his best season of his career in 2018, but his team has lost 2 of their 3 games on the road this season. He has been just as good throwing the ball at home as he has been on the road. But the major difference is what Newton is doing on the ground. At home this year he has 4 touchdown rushes and Carolina is undefeated at home. On the road, he only 134 rushing yard and 0 touchdowns running the ball. It’s a weird concept, because most teams don’t want their starting quarterback to take contact. Especially one who is nursing a shoulder injury, but Newton is the biggest regular ball carrier on the roster.

Tonight’s matchup isn’t the best one for testing out this theory. Pittsburgh is still one of the more physical teams in the entire league and will attempt to hit Newton as much as possible. Don’t be surprised if Cam gets a chance at the goal line and attempt to keep the teams winning streak alive when he scores a touchdown.

2. Both teams aren’t the best against defending the pass

Pittsburgh has always been known for their hard-hitting style, but they aren’t very good against the pass. They have allowed four 300+ yard passing games and nothing less than 250 yards in the air in any game this season. Good news for Panthers fans is that Greg Olsen looks like he’s 100% healthy now. He’s scored in every game since coming back from a foot injury. Devin Funchess is the leader among the Wide Receivers, but the favorite target is Christian McCaffrey. Not only does he lead the team in targets and catches, he’s also has the highest catch percentage among any receiver on the team with 84.55%.

Carolina has to deal with the most dynamic duo of receivers they will face all season. No offense to their own division who has an amazing group of receivers, but none are better than Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster. They have combined 104 catches, 1266 yards and 11 touchdowns this season. Brown has caught at least one touchdown in eight of the Steelers nine games this season. Ben Roethlisberger will test the corners of Carolina all night. He’s thrown to those two guys 169 out of his 339 attempted passes this season.

3. Can Carolina keep Newton on his feet?

Pittsburgh is fourth in the league in sacks at 26 and have had success pressuring the passer all season. TJ Watt leads them with 7 sacks and they have four players with at least three sacks and none of them are named Cameron Heyward. Heyward lead Pittsburgh with 12.5 sacks last season has gotten off to a slow start. Even with Heyward not having the numbers of last season, Pittsburgh as a team has been very good rushing the passer. Now they haven’t faced a quarterback all year with the size and strength of Newton.

Expect Pittsburgh to blitz Newton all night long and force him to throw under pressure. Newton is known for making mistakes when he has pressure.

Prediction:

With both teams ranked in the 20′s in pass defense, this has all of the makings of a shootout. Not to mention both running backs (McCaffrey and James Conner) can catch the ball out the backfield, gives both quarterbacks (Newton and Roethlisberger) every chance to throw for over 300 yards a piece. The difference is Carolina is focused on keeping up with New Orleans in the NFC South race. Their focus will allow them to force a few turnovers and give Newton and Olsen the ability to connect a for big play or two. Watch D.J. Moore in this game, this could be his coming out party on national TV.

Carolina 27 Pittsburgh 24

 

 

 

 

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Dez Bryant and the Saints are negotiating a Deal http://proplayerinsiders.com/news-features-featured-on-homepage/dez-bryant-saints-negotiating-deal/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/news-features-featured-on-homepage/dez-bryant-saints-negotiating-deal/#comments Wed, 07 Nov 2018 04:28:48 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173724  Seattle WA- Free agent Dez Bryant and the New Orleans Saints are in talks with making a deal happen. A source that is close to Bryant stated that the Saints are very interested in him and want to make this deal happen as soon as possible. If the Saints could make this deal, this would make the Saints more dangerous than what they already are. They are 7-1 and are the division leaders in the NFC South.

dez-bryant

The Saints are a very balanced team. They have a two-back system with Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram, which has helped out Drew Brees a lot. Brees has mainly been mistake free and now the Saints are second in the league with scoring 34.9 points per game because the run game has been very productive. However, Veteran Ted Ginn Jr. was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury last month. Newly signed restricted free agent Cameron Meredith has not been very productive thus far. He has not been thrown at.

If Bryant and the Saints agree to a deal, this would give the Saints more depth at the wide receiver position. Bryant is still a physical receiver that can make plays down the field. You can put him in one on one match-ups, he can still make a big play or go get the jump balls. In his career, he had three consecutive seasons with at least 1,200 yards and 12 touchdowns.

At the moment, the deal is looking promising, but things could change in a quick minute.

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Un-bear-able, Bills lose by 32 http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/un-bear-able-bills-lose-32/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/un-bear-able-bills-lose-32/#comments Mon, 05 Nov 2018 21:40:55 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173825 If you had the Bears defense in fantasy football, then you were handsomely rewarded.

The Chicago Bears ate up the Buffalo Bills offensive woes that equated to a 41-9 Bears win. Once again, turnovers made the difference in the game, but in this loss, it was the offense as a whole that should take the blame, not just Nathan Peterman.

On some good throws by Peterman, the ball just failed to be caught by players like Kelvin Benjamin and Terrelle Pryor.

With 2:24 left in the third quarter, from close to 30 yards out of the endzone, Peterman made a near perfect throw to Benjamin, who despite being contested, put two hands on the ball however couldn’t bring it down for a score.

A poor incompletion by Pryor and costly fumble by tight end Jason Croom, proved to be detrimental to the outcome of the game.

The one thing you could give Peterman a knock for is his instinct to run the ball himself at the end of the first half rather than trying for a hail mary down field. Could it have possibly been a play in which Peterman was too scared put another interception on his record? All he could’ve done in the moment was throw it up for a touchdown, however his choice was to run the ball and take it to the sideline, effectively giving the team no chance for a touchdown.

It will be fun for the fans (and apparently EJ Manuel) to point fingers at the Bills quarterback, but there is an obvious belief in Peterman’s skills by the front office and coaching, and it showed in his most recent performance at home.

For one, he finished a game.

 

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Bills Halftime: Bills trail 28-0 to the Bears http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bills-halftime-bills-trail-28-0-bears/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/bills-halftime-bills-trail-28-0-bears/#comments Sun, 04 Nov 2018 19:39:20 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173820 For the Buffalo Bills offense, there was little risk and little reward in the first quarter.

In the first quarter, without having to deal with Bears linebacker Khalil Mack, little progress was made for the Bills offense. There were a few carries by LeSean McCoy, however, little yardage was gained.

The Bills starting quarterback, Nathan Peterman, had no interceptions and only 15 yards. While Mitchell Trubisky, a player that’s really come into his own, drove the ball down and spread it out among Taylor Gabriel, Trey Burton and Anthony Miller.

In the second quarter, a pass by Peterman bobbled by tight end Jason Croom resulted in a fumble recovered by the Bears Eddie Jackson and taken in for a touchdown, increased the Bears lead to 14-0.

On the Bills next drive, a pass intended for Bills receiver Terrelle Pryor was never corralled, resulting in an interception on Peterman’s record.

And on the Bills next drive, with just under 4:00 minutes to play in the first half, the Bills and Peterman threw another interception resulting in a pick six, increasing the score from 14-0 to 21-0. For Trubisky, he continues to sit back and watch the score increase as the Bears defense takes care of the Bills’ inefficiencies.

A big punt return by Tarik Cohen before the half came to a close put the Bears in good field position to kick a field goal. However, it didn’t take long for running back Jordan Howard to plunge through the Bills defense and increase the lead to 28 points.

At the end of the half, Peterman is 12/19 for only 75 yards and two interceptions, while Trubisky is 8/13 for 104 yards.

We’ll see if Buffalo maintains their belief in Peterman in the second half, as the team has a big hill to climb.

 

 

 

 

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Pick Six: Tennessee Titans vs Dallas Cowboys http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/tennessee-titans-dallas-cowboys/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/tennessee-titans-dallas-cowboys/#comments Sun, 04 Nov 2018 16:46:45 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173815 The Tennessee Titans have been trending in the wrong direction lately. They have lost three straight games after starting the season 3-1 and are looking to do anything to stop that slide. On Monday night, the Titans travel to Dallas to take on another 3-4 team in the Dallas Cowboys. With the whole world to see, can the Titans end their slide or will they fall prey to the Cowboys in Jerry’s World? No one knows the answer as of yet, but these six points could help them win the game in prime time.

Offense

1) Super Mario must be present

This season has shown us that Mariota can have some bad moments and some special moments too. On Monday night, the Titans need Mariota to be special against the defense of the Dallas Cowboys, which is ranked number one in total defense in the NFL. Mariota will more than likely not have an offensive line that will keep him clean in the pocket, so for the Titans to win, he must break the pocket and make some plays in the passing game and in the running game as well. It’s time for Mariota to be Super Mario.

2) Explosion in the passing game

The Titans have not really been that prolific in the passing game this season. In fact, they are currently ranked 31st in the NFL in the passing game. Tennessee has the talent, but they just have not shown it consistently and that has hurt them. In this game in Dallas, they need their most exciting receivers, Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor, to step up. If both are able to threaten the Cowboys’ defense, then the explosive plays will come and the offense will be able to help the defense more than they have in the last three weeks of games.

3) Accept the challenge

The Tennessee Titans offensive line has not accepted the challenge for most of the season. The blocking up front has not been great and as a result, the running game has suffered and Mariota has been running for his life at times. Facing the Cowboys defensive line is not going to be easy, but the Titans have to step up to the plate and make things happen. If they don’t, they will be making Mariota’s job even tougher than it has to be.

 

Defense

1) Bring the heat

The Titans have been doing solid work defensively, but they have been suffering when it comes to rushing the passer. The reality is the Titans have not really scared any teams with their pass rush all season long. They need to bring the heat in this game or else Dak Prescott will have all day to find people down the field and that could spell danger for the Titans. Can and who will bring the heat in this game are the questions the Titans have to answer.

2) Gobble up the run

The Titans are facing a team that is predicated on its run game. When Ezekiel Elliott gets going, he can be hard to stop and can cause huge problems for the Titans. With that being said, Jurrell Casey, Austin Johnson and the entire front seven of the Titans must fill the gaps and stay in their lanes against the run Monday night. If they do so, they will make Dallas one-dimensional.

3) Keep the momentum going all game

The Titans have been good defensively in stretches but have fell off at some point during the game, allowing the opponent to get back in the game. For the Titans to win this game Monday, the defensive intensity level cannot drop and someone has to step up and be the hype man for that team. Who it is and what he says are up in the air, but the Titans defense needs all hands on deck and they need someone to lead them from a coach’s perspective.

Tennessee has a great opportunity to win a game and get back on track. With their inefficient performances so far, no one is sure how they will come out. Hopefully for their sake, they get it all together for this prime time game.

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Sunday Night Showdown: Brady vs. Rodgers http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/sunday-night-showdown-brady-vs-rodgers/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/sunday-night-showdown-brady-vs-rodgers/#comments Sun, 04 Nov 2018 05:27:18 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173804 For just the second time, which is astonishing to think, heavyweights Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady will match-up on NBC Sports in New England Sunday night at 8:20 PM.

It’s the marquee match-up among many great match-ups in the NFL. Baltimore faces off against Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Baker Mayfield play Kansas City and Patrick Mahomes, and finally Drew Brees and Jared Goff serve as the opening act for Brady and Rodgers.

Rodgers has the edge over Brady in a lot of statistical categories. Including all time passer rating, completion percentage and yards per attempt. Yet, what Rodgers doesn’t have that Brady does is a handful of Super Bowl rings and an edge in MVP awards. Brady holds three while Rodgers holds two.

There will be a lot to watch in this match-up outside of the two great quarterbacks that will own much of the spotlight. Here’s some things to look for in this weekend’s match-up:

NBC Productions

This is obviously a big opportunity for NBC Sports to broadcast the NFL’s most premium match-up. Already, we’ve seen NBA legend Michael Jordan promote the match-up in dramatic fashion. The in-game presentation should be top of the line, considering the viewership will be there, a lot of big money is to be made in this surprisingly rare match-up.

Young backs

Sony Michel and Aaron Jones are among some of the best young running backs in the NFL right now. Michel says he’d play on one leg for the Patriots, but maybe that wouldn’t be the most productive. Michel is currently listed as questionable, while Jones is unquestionable and ready to take on more carries in Green Bay’s offense. When the ball is not in the air, the game should still be exciting when watching both of these backs take it to the ground.

Defensive coordinators beware

As far as interceptions are concerned, nothing is too dominate on either side of the ball. So far this year, Green Bay has two interceptions to New England’s seven. There’s little expectation that the defense will take over the game, however, if one defense can play a little better than the other, it could make the difference in the offensive shootout that many predict.

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Pryor to Sunday: Bills gear up to face Bears http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/pryor-sunday-bills-gear-face-bears/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/pryor-sunday-bills-gear-face-bears/#comments Fri, 02 Nov 2018 21:56:32 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173797 The Buffalo Bills offense has a bit of a different look coming into week nine against the Chicago Bears, who currently has their star linebacker, Khalil Mack, listed as questionable.

Earlier in the week, Buffalo signed wide receiver Terrelle Pryor. Pryor, a seven year vet, has shown flashes of production in the NFL, mostly at wide receiver.

In 2016, Pryor hit 1,000 receiving yards with a Cleveland Browns team that went 1-15. In his subsequent seasons, Pryor wasn’t able to achieve as much productivity. Despite being with teams that were a bit better, he felt that he was underused and suffered minor setbacks due to injury.

However, coming into this stint with Buffalo, Pryor seems to be fired up about helping his new quarterback, whoever that might be, succeed. Pryor said regarding Bills’ quarterback Nathan Peterman, “We’re going to help him do great. If he plays this week, we’re going to help him be very successful. And we’re going to make him look good this weekend, period.”

If it’s not Peterman, then it’s going to be Matt Barkley against Chicago. Barkley has some experience, which is good.

In his three year NFL career, Barkley has only appeared in 11 games. But he’s played as recently as this past off-season with the Cincinnati Bengals before suffering a knee injury that took him out of contention to back-up Andy Dalton.

With the trade deadline now past, the Bills obviously never made any big splashes. Their biggest target, Lesean McCoy, stayed put, despite reports throughout the season that he could be on the move.

The focus now, with Buffalo’s limited weapons still in place, is to regain their confidence by simply working day-to-day, play by play. Once Josh Allen is healthy, all this quarterback chaos should come to a slow down, at the very least.

Yet, in the immediate days and weeks ahead, I expect a receiving core zipping around trying to make the best out of their current situation. And as far as the defense is concerned, if they can keep up with the way they’ve played, Buffalo should be able to churn out a few wins down the stretch.

The Bills will get things going this week against the Bears at 1:00 PM EST at their own New Era Field.

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2019 NFL SCOUTING COMBINE WATCH LIST http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/2019-nfl-scouting-combine-watch-list/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/2019-nfl-scouting-combine-watch-list/#comments Fri, 02 Nov 2018 18:41:38 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173792  

2019 NFL SCOUTING COMBINE WATCH LIST

By: PPI Draft Pro

 

Each year roughly 330 players are invited to the NFL Combine and many of them will be underclassmen. Last year alone about 225 seniors were invited while about 110 were underclassmen.

 

Below is a list of about 325 seniors who we believe will be among the top names considered when the NFL Combine voting takes place later this month.

 

 

 

2019 NFL SCOUTING COMBINE WATCH LIST

Pos Jersey First Last School
WR 3 Ronald Cleveland Air Force
LS 59 Austin Cutting Air Force
DE 9 Jamal Davis II Akron
SS 7 Jordan George Akron
DE 49 Isaiah Buggs Alabama
OG 66 Lester Cotton Alabama
RB 34 Damien Harris Alabama
C 71 Ross Pierschbacher Alabama
CB 17 Tae Hayes Appalachian State
RB 25 Jalin Moore Appalachian State
WR 6 Shun Brown Arizona
WR 19 Shawn Poindexter Arizona
CB 17 Jace Whittaker Arizona
QB 5 Manny Wilkins Arizona State
OG 51 Hjalte Froholdt Arkansas
OLB 23 Dre Greenlaw Arkansas
DE 10 Randy Ramsey Arkansas
DT 90 Armon Watts Arkansas
FB 22 Calen Holt Army
ILB 57 Deshaun Davis Auburn
DT 95 Dontavius Russell Auburn
OT 76 Prince Tega Wanogho Auburn
CB 3 Josh Miller Ball State
WR 5 Jalen Hurd Baylor
DE 52 Greg Roberts Baylor
CB 23 Derrek Thomas Baylor
CB 14 Tyler Horton Boise State
WR 7 A.J. Richardson Boise State
QB 4 Brett Rypien Boise State
DE 2 Zach Allen Boston College
FS 21 Lukas Denis Boston College
OG 75 Chris Lindstrom Boston College
DE 11 Wyatt Ray Boston College
TE 89 Tommy Sweeney Boston College
ILB 4 Khalil Hodge Buffalo
WR 83 Anthony Johnson Buffalo
C 77 James O’Hagan Buffalo
DE 90 Corbin Kaufusi BYU
OT 73 Ului Lapuaho BYU
QB 12 Tanner Mangum BYU
OLB 16 Sione Takitaki BYU
RB 28 Patrick Laird California
QB 9 Jacob Dolegala Central Connecticut State
FS 25 Kyle Gibson Central Florida
OG 78 Wyatt Miller Central Florida
OLB 11 Alex Figueroa Central Oklahoma
DE 5 John Cominsky Charleston (WV)
OG 64 Nate Davis Charlotte
OG 70 Dino Boyd Cincinnati
DE 7 Austin Bryant Clemson
CB 2 Mark Fields Clemson
DT 67 Albert Huggins Clemson
OT 75 Mitch Hyatt Clemson
ILB 34 Kendall Joseph Clemson
WR 13 Hunter Renfrow Clemson
DT 42 Christian Wilkins Clemson
RB 34 Travon McMillian Colorado
SS 6 Evan Worthington Colorado
WR 15 Brody Oliver Colorado School of Mines
FS 23 Nasir Adderley Delaware
CB 3 Darren Gardenhire Delta State
TE 80 Daniel Helm Duke
OLB 34 Ben Humphreys Duke
FS 9 Jeremy McDuffie Duke
WR 88 Trevon Brown East Carolina
WR 15 Alexander Hollins Eastern Illinois
OT 73 Oli Udoh Elon
OLB 41 Jerry Iweh Fairmont State
OT 52 Devon Johnson Ferris State
OT 73 Tez Ivey Florida
DE 96 Cece Jefferson Florida
OG 74 Fred Johnson Florida
ILB 2 Azeez Al-Shaair Florida Atlantic
CB 3 Shelton Lewis Florida Atlantic
SS 18 Jalen Young Florida Atlantic
DT 90 Demarcus Christmas Florida State
C 54 Alec Eberle Florida State
DT 55 Fredrick Jones Florida State
WR 80 Nyqwan Murray Florida State
RB 19 Jacques Patrick Florida State
CB 18 Deandre Baker Georgia
C 53 Lamont Gaillard Georgia
WR 5 Terry Godwin Georgia
DE 13 Jonathan Ledbetter Georgia
ILB 6 Natrez Patrick Georgia
OLB 15 D’Andre Walker Georgia
ILB 31 Jahlani Tavai Hawaii
ILB 8 Emeke Egbule Houston
CB 14 Isaiah Johnson Houston
OT 66 Brian Fineanganofo Idaho State
OG 53 Nick Allegretti Illinois
CB 7 Jamarkese Williams Incarnate Word (TX)
OG 62 Brandon Knight Indiana
OG 59 Ross Reynolds Iowa
OLB 29 Joe Dineen Jr. Kansas
DT 96 Danny Wise Kansas
OT 71 Dalton Risner Kansas State
DE 41 Josh Allen Kentucky
OG 64 George Asafo-Adjei Kentucky
CB 8 Derrick Baity Kentucky
WR 2 Dorian Baker Kentucky
TE 87 C.J. Conrad Kentucky
SS 7 Mike Edwards Kentucky
CB 6 Lonnie Johnson Jr. Kentucky
OG 65 Bunchy Stallings Kentucky
OT 74 O’Shea Dugas Louisiana Tech
DE 45 Jaylon Ferguson Louisiana Tech
DT 93 Immanuel Turner Louisiana Tech
WR 9 Teddy Veal Louisiana Tech
OG 72 Lukayus McNeil Louisville
WR 9 Jaylen Smith Louisville
RB 4 Nick Brossette LSU
OG 78 Garrett Brumfield LSU
TE 18 Foster Moreau LSU
K 36 Cole Tracy LSU
OLB 6 Sterling Sheffield Maine
TE 86 Brandon Dillon Marian (IN)
DT 91 Ryan Bee Marshall
WR 8 Tyre Brady Marshall
OLB 4 Juwon Young Marshall
DE 6 Jesse Aniebonam Maryland
OT 55 Derwin Gray Maryland
RB 24 Ty Johnson Maryland
OG 58 Damian Prince Maryland
FS 4 Darnell Savage Jr. Maryland
WR 5 Andy Isabella Massachusetts
RB 8 Marquis Young Massachusetts
OLB 8 B.J. Blunt McNeese State
OLB 7 Curtis Akins Memphis
OG 72 Trevon Tate Memphis
CB 28 Michael Jackson Sr. Miami
SS 4 Jaquan Johnson Miami
FS 22 Sheldrick Redwine Miami
OT 78 Tyree St. Louis Miami
DT 9 Gerald Willis III Miami
FS 23 Tyree Kinnel Michigan
DE 15 Chase Winovich Michigan
WR 18 Felton Davis III Michigan State
RB 3 LJ Scott Michigan State
SS 27 Khari Willis Michigan State
OLB 36 Blake Cashman Minnesota
OT 73 Donnell Greene Minnesota
WR 5 DaMarkus Lodge Mississippi
OG 79 Javon Patterson Mississippi
CB 5 Ken Webster Mississippi
SS 36 Zedrick Woods Mississippi
SS 38 Johnathan Abram Mississippi State
QB 7 Nick Fitzgerald Mississippi State
C 74 Elgton Jenkins Mississippi State
SS 41 Mark McLaurin Mississippi State
CB 2 Jamal Peters Mississippi State
DE 9 Montez Sweat Mississippi State
OT 77 Paul Adams Missouri
DT 5 Terry Beckner Jr. Missouri
TE 11 Kendall Blanton Missouri
WR 84 Emanuel Hall Missouri
QB 3 Drew Lock Missouri
DT 99 Walter Palmore Missouri
OG 71 Kevin Pendleton Missouri
OLB 42 Josh Buss Montana
WR 8 Stanley Morgan Jr. Nebraska
CB 13 Jalin Burrell New Mexico
OLB 2 Terrill Hanks New Mexico State
WR 3 Damion JeanPiere Jr. Nicholls State
FS 13 Chris Johnson North Alabama
DE 53 Malik Carney North Carolina
DT 97 Jalen Dalton North Carolina
QB 15 Ryan Finley North Carolina State
OG 53 Tyler Jones North Carolina State
C 65 Garrett McCain Bradbury North Carolina State
OLB 3 Germaine Pratt North Carolina State
DE 45 Darian Roseboro North Carolina State
QB 12 Easton Stick North Dakota State
CB 9 Nate Brooks North Texas
OLB 22 E.J. Ejiya North Texas
CB 16 Kemon Hall North Texas
DT 49 Roderick Young North Texas
WR 1 Emmanuel Butler Northern Arizona
OT 73 Max Scharping Northern Illinois
OLB 32 Nate Hall Northwestern
CB 24 Montre Hartage Northwestern
QB 18 Clayton Thorson Northwestern
DE 11 Obi Iheoma Northwestern State
OG 71 Alex Bars Notre Dame
ILB 4 Te’von Coney Notre Dame
C 53 Sam Mustipher Notre Dame
P 85 Tyler Newsome Notre Dame
DT 99 Jerry Tillery Notre Dame
OLB 23 Drue Tranquill Notre Dame
RB 2 Dexter Williams Notre Dame
OT 65 Joe Lowery Ohio
WR 4 Papi White Ohio
WR 21 Parris Campbell Ohio State
WR 1 Johnnie Dixon Ohio State
OG 78 Demetrius Knox Ohio State
WR 83 Terry McLaurin Ohio State
OT 59 Isaiah Prince Ohio State
OG 72 Ben Powers Oklahoma
OG 75 Dru Samia Oklahoma
WR 9 Jonathan Duhart Old Dominion
WR 7 Travis Fulgham Old Dominion
DE 7 Oshane Ximines Old Dominion
FS 7 Ugochukwu Amadi Oregon
OLB 11 Justin Hollins Oregon
DE 97 Jalen Jelks Oregon
OLB 7 Koa Farmer Penn State
QB 9 Trace McSorley Penn State
CB 21 Amani Oruwariye Penn State
SS 4 Nick Scott Penn State
WR 3 DeAndre Thompkins Penn State
OT 78 Alex Bookser Pittsburgh
OT 70 Stefano Millin Pittsburgh
RB 30 Qadree Ollison Pittsburgh
ILB 58 Quintin Wirginis Pittsburgh
WR 4 Jesper Horsted Princeton
OT 65 Tariq Cole Rutgers
FS 9 Saquan Hampton Rutgers
WR 14 Davion Davis Sam Houston State
DE 49 Derick Roberson Sam Houston State
TE 89 Josh Oliver San Jose State
OT 78 Trey Pipkins Sioux Falls (SD)
RB 4 Wes Hills Slippery Rock
WR 3 Jamarius Way South Alabama
OG 78 Zack Bailey South Carolina
OT 74 Dennis Daley South Carolina
CB 1 Nick Harvey South Carolina
CB 22 Steven Montac South Carolina
CB 9 Keisean Nixon South Carolina
WR 1 Deebo Samuel South Carolina
CB 9 Jordan Brown South Dakota State
OG 76 Drew Forbes Southeast Missouri State
OG 77 Chris Brown Southern California
OT 70 Chuma Edoga Southern California
OLB 45 Porter Gustin Southern California
C 50 Toa Lobendahn Southern California
CB 8 Iman Marshall Southern California
ILB 35 Cameron Smith Southern California
FS 7 Marvell Tell III Southern California
RB 28 Aca’Cedric Ware Southern California
OG 68 Nick Natour Southern Methodist
CB 23 Jordan Wyatt Southern Methodist
TE 19 Logan Parker Southern Utah
ILB 32 Joey Alfieri Stanford
P 14 Jake Bailey Stanford
C 73 Jesse Burkett Stanford
CB 13 Alijah Holder Stanford
RB 20 Bryce Love Stanford
WR 17 Jamal Custis Syracuse
QB 2 Eric Dungey Syracuse
OT 78 Koda Martin Syracuse
DT 95 Chris Slayton Syracuse
DE 15 Ben Banogu TCU
OLB 91 L.J. Collier TCU
ILB 42 Ty Summers TCU
WR 25 KaVontae Turpin TCU
RB 7 Ryquell Armstead Temple
DT 9 Michael Dogbe Temple
SS 2 Delvon Randall Temple
CB 6 Rock Ya-Sin Temple
CB 2 Kris Boyd Texas
DE 90 Charles Omenihu Texas
RB 5 Tre Watson Texas
ILB 42 Otaro Alaka Texas A&M
DE 46 Landis Durham Texas A&M
DT 8 Kingsley Keke Texas A&M
DT 34 Daylon Mack Texas A&M
DE 99 Michael Onuoha Texas A&M Commerce
SS 21 Mook Reynolds Texas A&M Commerce
OLB 40 Dakota Allen Texas Tech
CB 13 Ka’dar Hollman Toledo
WR 7 Jon’Vea Johnson Toledo
WR 25 Cody Thompson Toledo
CB 18 Blace Brown Troy
CB 1 Donnie Lewis Jr. Tulane
OG 72 Tyler Bowling Tulsa
DE 99 Jamell Garcia-Williams UAB
WR 3 Keelan Doss UC Davis
FS 15 Corrion Ballard Utah
OLB 30 Cody Barton Utah
OT 70 Jackson Barton Utah
SS 13 Marquise Blair Utah
K 97 Matt Gay Utah
OLB 22 Chase Hansen Utah
P 33 Mitch Wishnowsky Utah
CB 5 Nik Needham UTEP
DT 8 Iseoluwapo Jegede Valdosta State
DE 34 Dare Odeyingbo Vanderbilt
OT 58 Justin Skule Vanderbilt
OT 73 Ethan Greenidge Villanova
SS 21 Juan Thornhill Virginia
OT 69 Yosuah Nijman Virginia Tech
DT 8 Ricky Walker Virginia Tech
OG 74 Phil Haynes Wake Forest
CB 1 Corey Ballentine Washburn
OT 72 Trey Adams Washington
QB 3 Jake Browning Washington
ILB 25 Ben Burr-Kirven Washington
DT 99 Greg Gaines Washington
RB 9 Myles Gaskin Washington
OT 58 Kaleb McGary Washington
SS 14 JoJo McIntosh Washington
CB 23 Jordan Miller Washington
TE 88 Drew Sample Washington
OT 60 Andre Dillard Washington State
QB 16 Gardner Minshew II Washington State
OG 55 Iosua Opeta Weber State
SS 6 Dravon Askew-Henry West Virginia
OT 55 Yodny Cajuste West Virginia
QB 7 Will Grier West Virginia
WR 12 Gary Jennings West Virginia
WR 13 David Sills V West Virginia
TE 88 Trevon Wesco West Virginia
DT 99 Khalen Saunders Western Illinois
OG 66 Beau Benzschawel Wisconsin
ILB 43 Ryan Connelly Wisconsin
OG 63 Michael Deiter Wisconsin
SS 14 D’Cota Dixon Wisconsin
ILB 53 T.J. Edwards Wisconsin
FB 45 Alec Ingold Wisconsin
DT 99 Olive Sagapolu Wisconsin
OLB 17 Andrew Van Ginkel Wisconsin
DT 90 Miles Brown Wofford
FS 6 Marcus Epps Wyoming
DE 91 Carl Granderson Wyoming
SS 28 Andrew Wingard Wyoming

 

 

 

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Thursday Night Preview- Raiders vs 49ers http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-raiders-vs-49ers/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/thursday-night-preview-raiders-vs-49ers/#comments Fri, 02 Nov 2018 01:10:11 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173785 On Thursday night, the Oakland Raiders and San Francisco 49ers will battle in a game of 2 teams trying to find a way to turn their seasons around. The Raiders enter the game on a 3 game losing streak and have lost each of the last 3 games by at least 16 games or more. Oakland has given up 25 or more points in every game but one this season and is now trying to adjust with having Amari Cooper on offense. The 49ers enter this game at home having lost 6 games in a row. But this is the same team that has 7 players on injured reserve and another 3 players being ruled out (as of this writing). The 49ers could be starting their 3rd string quarterback (Tom Savage) if CJ Beathard isn’t able to go. So lets take a look a few things to watch as game kicks off at 8:20 on Thursday night.

1. Matt Brieda should get the ball early and often

Oakland has given up over 140 yards in a game on the ground 4 times already this season. Before Brieda was injured, he had 2 games in the first 3 that he averaged 9 yards or more per carry and had over 10 attempts. The Raiders gave up over 200 yards on the ground last week against the Colts. The 49ers haven’t run the ball effectively much over the last few weeks. They have had 107 yards in each of the last 2 weeks on the ground. San Francisco should be able to use Brieda and Alfred Morris on a regular basis to pound the Oakland defense.

Oakland has also allowed over 5 yards per rush in each of those games as well. If Jon Gruden can find ways to get his team to blitz at the right time on Thursday night, they could have a chance to keep the 49ers from shredding their defense.

2. Oakland should be able to score points against the 49ers 

If Oakland could do one thing right is get the ball down the field. Even though they score 19.7 points per game, Oakland has some solid offensive weapons. If Derek Carr can stay on his feet, he has Jordy Nelson and Jared Cook. If Carr can make a few plays in the passing game early, then the Raiders running game should be able to be effective. If Richard Sherman can’t go for the 49ers, expect Carr to find Nelson for a big play or two against a weakened secondary.

Prediction:

It’s a national television game and even though it’s not the game that we all expected when the schedule was released, there is something to be gained from this game on Thursday night. You should expect a high scoring affair. Both teams are ranked in the 20′s or worse in most of the defensive categories. So in a game like this, you take the better quarterback when the teams are even. Because Carr has been improving over the last few weeks and they had some time to adjust to life without Cooper, I’m taking the Raiders.

Oakland 37 San Francisco 31

 

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Patriots break game loose, beat Bills on MNF http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/patriots-break-game-loose-beat-bills-mnf/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/patriots-break-game-loose-beat-bills-mnf/#comments Wed, 31 Oct 2018 01:34:49 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173780 A 28-3 Tom Brady against the Buffalo Bills all-time became 29-3 after a victory against the Bills at home, with a final score of 25-6 Patriots. A Bills offense led by Derek Anderson just couldn’t keep up with Brady’s bunch, despite great stops by the Bills defensive unit.

With 3:04 left in the third quarter, Anderson gave up a costly fumble, which led to a Stephen Gostkowski field goal to break New England’s lead from 9-6 to 12-6. Within the first three quarters, New England nearly doubled the Bills in total first downs. After three quarters, New England’s 17 first downs outpaced Buffalo’s mere 9.

Even though the final score showed a rather large deficit in New England’s favor, the Bills defense had a pretty positive outing, with great games out of Matt Milano and Lorenzo Alexander.

Alexander, arguably their best player on defense, tallied two sacks. While players like Milano and Tredavious White disrupted a lot that Brady was trying to accomplish early on.

However, the Bills lost a key piece to their defense during the game, as Tremaine Edmunds left with a concussion.

In the fourth quarter, James White’s 1-yard touchdown run, as well as Devin McCourty’s 84-yard interception return broke the game loose from 12-6, to 25-6.

In the end, the Bills offense couldn’t keep up with Patriots. While the defense has played extremely well against good talent, frustration was felt in the locker room for the entire team.

Running back Lesean McCoy clearly felt a sense of responsibility and a lack of production out of the offense as opposed to the defense, McCoy reflected on the last couple of games and said, “We held Aaron Rodgers to one touchdown. Tom Brady, kind of the same thing. Then we don’t do anything on offense. It’s not fair for them.”

In the final moments of the game, Anderson left with an arm injury. This currently leaves the Bills with one healthy quarterback, Nathan Peterman, against the Chicago Bears, who may be without their star linebacker, Khalil Mack. Still, a challenge looms ahead if the Bills plan on regaining any team confidence.

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MNF Halftime: Bills Thurman Thomas honored, New England leads 9-3 http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/mnf-halftime-bills-thurman-thomas-honored-new-england-leads-9-3/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/mnf-halftime-bills-thurman-thomas-honored-new-england-leads-9-3/#comments Tue, 30 Oct 2018 01:59:46 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173777 In their first Monday Night Football game since 2008, the Buffalo Bills came out with a creative approach on their opening drive. Quarterback Derek Anderson’s flea flicker to Lesean McCoy, followed by a flip to Zay Jones nearly resulted in a deep touchdown targeted to Charles Clay.

Besides the flea flicker, McCoy was the Bills most active player in their offense, carrying the ball eight times and receiving twice for a total of 40 yards.

On the Patriots’ side of the ball, wide receiver Josh Gordon started on the opening drive, despite reports of tardiness prior to kickoff. His production was minimal, as the majority of the load was carried by wide receiver Julian Edelman recording 68 yards on just six receptions.

However, the highest scorer of the first half, kicker Stephen Gostkowski became the 10th active NFL player to cross the 1,000 point mark.

The score is 9-3 New England heading into the second half.

During halftime, the Buffalo Bills announced the official retirement of number 34, worn by legendary running back Thurman Thomas.

For many fans, this jersey retirement was long overdue. 18 years ago, Thomas decided to hang up his cleats. Throughout his 12 years as a Buffalo Bill, Thomas recorded 2,877 rushing yards, 65 rushing touchdowns and 22 receiving touchdowns.

Thomas will join fellow teammates, Jim Kelly and Bruce Smith, as the only Buffalo Bills to have their jersey retired by the team. Effectively taking numbers 12, 78 and now 34 off the board, for good.

For Thomas, his number 34 is now retired from every stage of his playing career.

For further updates on tonight’s game follow @PlayerInsiders on Twitter.

 

 

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Monday Night Football: Brady in Buffalo http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/monday-night-football-brady-buffalo/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/monday-night-football-brady-buffalo/#comments Mon, 29 Oct 2018 21:20:42 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173768 For the first time in a decade, the Buffalo Bills will host a Monday Night Football game in Orchard Park, New York. They come in to the matchup as 14 point underdogs – understandable as they are 3-28 against Tom Brady. Not to mention, the Bills will be starting Derek Anderson, a 35-year-old quarterback they picked up off the streets just a few weeks ago.

Derek Anderson

Derek Anderson attempts pass against the Colts

 

While it will be difficult to expect much from Anderson, the Bills offense will need something out of him if they plan to stay in this game. New England comes in to week eight averaging 30.6 points a game so the 11.6 points the Bills offense averages per game – the lowest in the NFL – will not be enough. Look for Anderson and the Bills to rely on LeSean McCoy and the Bills defense to slow the game down. Buffalo’s D ranks among the league’s best only allowing 320.9 yards per game to opponents, good enough for fourth best in the NFL.

One of the key matchups in this AFC East battle will be Bills corner Tre’Davious White versus the Patriots receiving core. White has proved to be more than worthy of the first round pick Buffalo used on him in the 2017 NFL Draft and has caused fits for opposing receivers. Pats tight end Rob Gronkowski knows all about the frustration White can cause. Just last year Gronk cost himself a game check when he took a blatant cheap shot to the back of White after an interception in Buffalo.

White has been shadowing opponent’s number one receivers for much of the year but with so many weapons available to Brady that may not be the case this Monday night. Reports are that Patriots receiver Josh Gordon will be disciplined for tardiness which will result in the troubled wide receiver missing multiple series – possibly even a full quarter’s worth of playing time. Even if Gordon sees less playing time, Brady will still have Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, and Gronk at his disposal.  It will be interesting to keep an eye on just how Buffalo decides to utilize their star corner.

Thurman Thomas #34

Thurman Thomas

Kickoff is scheduled for 8:15 PM (ET). At halftime Buffalo will retire the number of legendary running back Thurman Thomas. Thomas is one of only eight Bills in the NFL Hall of Fame and is currently ranked 16th on the all-time rushing leaders list. Thomas played a pivotal role in the Bills four Super Bowl trips in the early 1990’s. Hopefully the mood at halftime will be one that allows fans to enjoy the ceremony.

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Patrick Peterson, Committed to a Solution in Arizona http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/patrick-peterson-committed-solution-arizona/ http://proplayerinsiders.com/nfl-player-team-news-features/patrick-peterson-committed-solution-arizona/#comments Fri, 26 Oct 2018 05:58:33 +0000 http://proplayerinsiders.com/?p=173747 Earlier this week Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson made it clear, he wanted out. A few days later and his tune has changed.

Patrick Peterson

Whether Peterson changed his mind or just came to the realization that General Manager Steve Keim wasn’t about toput the nail in his own coffin, it won’t change the fact that it’s just another negative headline coming out of the desert.

Arizona will need every bit of Peterson’s skillset headed in to week eight against the 1-6 division rival San Francisco 49ers. The 9ers come to town losers of five straight, one of those losses coming to Arizona in week five by a score of 28-18. So if Arizona beat San Francisco in their own home just a few weeks ago, why doesn’t a home game against the division foe feel like a sure win? If we take a look back at the week five game in Santa Clara, California you’ll see that the 49ers gave that game away – literally. San Francisco had five turnovers and Arizona had zero. Credit goes to Chandler Jones and the Cardinal’s defense for forcing those turnovers but the 49ers dominated Arizona in just about every other aspect of the game. In a game that lasted 60 minutes, San Francisco had the ball for over 40 of them. The 9ers had 447 total yards compared to the Cardinals 220. On third down the Cardinals only converted twice (2-12) whereas the 49ers converted on 10-17 attempts. First downs? The 49ers dominated there too (33-10).

While winning the turnover battle is always important, Arizona can’t expect to come away with five more turnovers than the 9ers this Sunday and will need their offense to do something – anything! Arizona recently handed Offensive Coordinator Mike McCoy his walking papers after the worst offensive start to a season in decades. Offenses in the NFL seem to be breaking records every week and somehow McCoy found a way to take a step back. Byron Leftwich will take over as Arizona’s play caller and he will look to resuscitate an all but dead offense. Leftwich came to town under Bruce Arians, a head coach that laid out the blueprints for how to use running back, David Johnson.  Leftwich may not be B.A. just yet, but he’s seen enough to know how to use his current roster. Leftwich also had a nine-year career as an NFL quarterback so you can be assured that running it up the middle will not be his forte. Josh Rosen might finally get the chance to throw the ball down field.

NFL: Washington Redskins at Arizona Cardinals

Byron Leftwich

In week five’s matchup against the 49ers, San Francisco was without track star receiver, Marquise Goodwin. He’s healthy now and with Cardinals safety Tre Boston questionable with injury, Goodwin could pose a problem for the Cardinals secondary. Boston’s replacement, Rudy Ford, appeared to have blown a deep coverage last week versus Denver which resulted in a 64-yard touchdown to Emmanuel Sanders. With receiver Pierre Garcon doubtful and rookie receiver Dante Pettis questionable to play for the 9ers on Sunday, could we see Arizona go back to having P2 shadow the number one receiver (Goodwin)? It might be necessary.

Kickoff is scheduled for 1:25pm (MT) and the 49ers are currently favored by one point. This week isn’t just going to decide who the worst team in the division is, it will decide who the worst team is in the entire league is.

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