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How The Masters is Like the NFL (And a Few Other Thoughts)

| April 5th, 2018

Here are a bunch of Around the League thoughts for this random April Thursday.

  • I love the Masters. But I don’t care for the people who run the tournament, Augusta National Golf Club. I love professional football. I can’t stand the people who operate the league, it’s thirty-two owners and league office. These are by-and-large shitty, old, racist white guys shepherding a great product.
  • This “lowering the head” penalty has been universally panned by players and the NFL’s attempt to rule change┬ábrain injuries out of the game (see: kickoff removal) reminds me of golf’s debate over the ball going too far. You can’t legislate strength and speed out of sports. There are more head injuries in the league now, and the ball goes further off the driver face, because the players are bigger, stronger and faster than ever before in human history. In the NFL they are hitting each other at 25 MPH.
  • Don’t look now but the Panthers are going to sell for north of $2.5 billion. The Bears, should the McCaskey family ever show interest in selling, would fetch $4 billion, even without owning a lucrative piece of real estate.
  • Has there ever been a team attack the NFL off-season like this Rams club? And does anybody really think it’s going to work? One lesson the NFL should learn from this approach: the key to modern success is winning on a good QB’s rookie deal. Once that QB gets his $100 million, the chances of winning consistently drop precipitously.
  • What’s been almost as amazing is the Seahawks embracing a down year, referring to 2018 as a “reset”. With Jimmy G. exciting the Bay Area, not hard to imagine Seattle trafficking down the bottom of the NFC West this year.
  • Derwin James is a special player and he was profiled here on DBB during this college football season.
  • An NFL GM texted me this week: “Everything coming out of the Giants right now is bullshit. Don’t believe any of it.” He’s right.
  • When asked if the Redskins were better with Alex Smith than Kirk Cousins, Jay Gruden responded, “Without a doubt.” One day there will be a 30-for-30 on Cousins’ time with Washington. And I will watch the hell out of it because I simply don’t understand his tenure with that team.
  • Saw an ESPN segment debating whether Mitch Trubisky will throw 20 TDs this season. He’s going to fly by that number is he stays healthy.

  • Team to watch when it comes to this draft: Buffalo. They have the assets to make a move for a QB. But will they? For the record, Buffalo should give A.J. McCarron a shot at that job.
  • Jon Gruden has asserted his dominance in Oakland by…cutting the punter. Seriously? Gruden hasn’t coached in the league for a decade and was 45-51 over his last six seasons. What could go wrong?
  • The NFL scheduling folks will most likely send the Giants or Cowboys to Philly to open the season but those games are big ratings grabbers no matter when they’re played. Why not give Deshaun Watson the stage to open 2018? Texans at Eagles. (The schedule should be released in about two weeks.)
  • Todd Bowles said the Jets traded up to the 3rd pick with “6-7 players in mind”. They had the 6th pick. What?!?
  • Masters pick? Justin Rose. Dark horse? Xander Schauffele.

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