FMIA: Day Of The Dolphin—How Miami Fearlessly Trades Draft Picks To Set Up Success, Now And Later

2021 NFL Draft
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DAVIE, Fla. — This was March 25, a Thursday night around 10, exactly five weeks before round one of the NFL draft. Miami GM Chris Grier sat in his rental Chrysler outside the Residence Inn in Ann Arbor, Mich. Grier would attend the Michigan Pro Day in the morning, but now, here he was, finishing [more]

FMIA: On Drama In Green Bay, The 49er Fakeout And The ’21 NFL Draft

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Two stories obliterated everything this weekend. (Well, except if you live in Illinois, or you’re a snowbird from Schaumburg.) The two: Trey Lance over Mac Jones to the Niners with the third pick, and the pre-draft news bomb from Adam Schefter that reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers wants out of Green Bay. You’ve got to hear [more]

FMIA Mock Draft: Mysteries, Trades and Guesswork As First Round Nears

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The best thing I can say about my mock draft: I am cautiously optimistic about hitting my first two picks. Before you see my mock draft and commence tomato-throwing at your screens—Penei Sewell, dropping to seven?! You are nuts!!!—a few headlines about what’s coming this week, prepping for the 8 p.m. Thursday kickoff to the [more]

FMIA: Whispers, Rumors And Gut Feelings As Most Unusual NFL Draft Ever (According To Gil Brandt) Nears

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This is the 67th draft for Pro Football Hall of Fame personnel evaluator Gil Brandt, which means he’s worked all but 19 NFL drafts. When you get to be 89, you’ve seen a lot of things. “This one ranks first, in terms of how unusual it is,” Brandt said Saturday. “The opt-outs kind of remind [more]

FMIA: 20 QB Decisions Shaping This NFL Offseason, Draft Like No Other

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There has never been an offseason like this one, which sets up a draft the likes of which we’ve never seen. Never has there been such a league-wide gold rush for quarterbacks. Never has the draft gone 1-2-3-4 with quarterbacks at the top. But with the assurance now that the top three picks will be, [more]

FMIA: Justin Fields, NFL Draft’s Man Of Mystery, Faces Down ‘Reckless’ Criticism About Work Ethic, Desire

Wisconsin v Ohio State
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It did not take Ohio State coach Ryan Day long to warm up to the topic of his draft-eligible quarterback, Justin Fields, and work ethic, and being the “last one in and first one out” in football prep last season. One question, to be exact. “The whole idea that he doesn’t have a very good [more]

FMIA: While Urban Meyer’s Jaguars Head In Trevor Lawrence’s Direction, Rest Of Draft’s Top 6 Gets Shaken Up

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One by one, the 2021 draft dominoes fall. One month from tonight, Roger Goodell will take the stage in downtown Cleveland—set on the shore of Lake Erie between the football stadium and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame—to announce the first-round picks in the 86th NFL Draft. In the wake of 26 minutes that [more]

FMIA: Free-Agency Millions Or NFL TV Billions, Patriots Owner Robert Kraft Simply Is ‘In This Business To Win’

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The NFL is a news machine. This is what it churned out in the past few days: • Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson has been named in seven civil lawsuits alleging he sexually assaulted or harassed women in the Houston area, bringing to a halt any thought he could be traded—and calling into question the immediate [more]

FMIA: Drew Brees Leaves A Legend. Plus What To Expect In Free Agency

Carolina Panthers v New Orleans Saints
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The Drew Brees part of this column will be everlasting. But part of this column, about the dawn of the annual crazy free-agency cycle, will be obsolete this afternoon, so please speed-read accordingly. Starting at noon ET today, you’ll begin to hear the drumbeat of major moves of the 52-hour (aptly named) legal tampering period [more]

FMIA: In This 2021 NFL Draft Primer, Uncertainty Is No. 1 Overall Prospect

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This is the kind of pre-draft season it’s been: There’s a first-round pass-rush prospect from the University of Miami named Gregory Rousseau. High school wideout/safety. College history, checkered. Year one: Played a few snaps as a freshman, got hurt, redshirted. Year two: ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year with 15.5 sacks. Year three: Opted out [more]

FMIA: New Insight On NFL’s 17-Game Schedule. Plus The Story Of One QB’s Quick (Door) Dash To Top 5 Prospect

BYU v Houston
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On many weekends late last spring and early summer, with his football future very much in doubt, Brigham Young quarterback Zach Wilson pulled his Mazda 6 onto an I-15 on-ramp in Provo, Utah. It would be a Friday, mid-afternoon, and Wilson would be road-tripping to see his quarterback tutor, John Beck, in southern California. On [more]

FMIA: Want To Trade For Deshaun Watson? Here’s What It Might Take

Tennessee Titans v Houston Texans
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What an interesting time for quarterbacks in the NFL. The last month: Jan. 20: Philip Rivers retires, opening the Indianapolis quarterback position—again. Jan. 30: Rams trade Jared Goff and three picks to Detroit for Matthew Stafford. Feb. 7: Tom Brady wins his seventh Super Bowl. Feb. 12: Quarterback and presumptive first overall pick Trevor Lawrence [more]

FMIA: Deconstructing Super Bowl LV And The 5 Bucs Plays That Shaped It

Super Bowl LV
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Where to begin? Let’s do the state of football, in a boldface way: Two great ones lost: Terez Paylor (journalism) and Marty Schottenheimer (coaching). I am heartbroken for the future of our business; Paylor, 37, was going to be a giant, and for a long time. Tom Brady, talking to the Bucs in the locker room before [more]

FMIA Super Bowl LV: Strange Season, Normal Result—Tom Brady Wins His Seventh Title, Leads Bucs Over Chiefs

NFL: FEB 07 Super Bowl LV - Chiefs v Buccaneers
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TAMPA, Fla. — “Hey dude,” Bruce Arians said to Tom Brady as confetti fell on their world champion heads Sunday night. “You remember our first conversation?” “Vividly,” Brady said. “Me too,” Arians said. “ ‘You come, and we’ll win the Super Bowl.’ “ He came, he saw, he conquered . . . even though so [more]

FMIA: Spotlight Shines On Tampa Defense Ahead Of Super Bowl LV; Inside The Rams-Lions QB Swap

Kansas City Chiefs v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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No one will think much of the first meeting of the Super Bowl LV combatants, Kansas City and Tampa Bay, by looking at the final score. Nine weeks ago, in the same stadium that will host this year’s Big Game, the Chiefs beat the Bucs 27-24. But this was the best Patrick Mahomes–Tyreek Hill game [more]