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]

FMIA: Ten For Tom—Brady Heading Back To Another Super Bowl, Bringing Buccaneers To Meet Chiefs In Tampa

NFC Championship - Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Green Bay Packers
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Tom Brady can’t quite grasp it, and if he can’t, how can we? Ten Super Bowl appearances in 19 years as an NFL starting quarterback, dwarfing modern-era megastars. Michael Jordan made it to the NBA finals six times in 15 seasons. Wayne Gretzky, six times in the Stanley Cup finals in 20 seasons. Derek Jeter, [more]

FMIA Divisional Round: Chiefs Prove HenneThing Is Possible, Beat Browns

Divisional Round - Cleveland Browns v Kansas City Chiefs
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When it was over, and when Kansas City backup quarterback Chad Henne floated back to the locker room after the biggest five-yard completion of his life—and quite likely the biggest five-yard completion in franchise history—Patrick Mahomes was waiting. Congrats all around after Kansas City survived over Cleveland 22-17 to advance to its third straight AFC [more]

FMIA: How The Browns—And A Guy Named Blake—Survived Weird Wild-Card Week And Upset The Steelers

Wild Card Round - Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers
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On Heinz Field Sunday night, after Cleveland won its first playoff game in 26 years, wide receiver Jarvis Landry was being shepherded to a post-game radio interview by the Browns’ media man, Peter John-Baptiste. Landry stopped. “Wait!” he said. Landry said, “I gotta talk to coach. Now. I need to see him.” After one of [more]

FMIA Week 17: Odd Season Ends On Weirder Note, a Wild-Card Peek and 20 People Who Defined NFL In 2020

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This was the 37th NFL regular season I’ve covered. It was the weirdest, of course, and not a single other one was close for second place. Washington and Philadelphia played in Week 1, with Dwayne Haskins’ season of great promise beginning in the nation’s capital, and Carson Wentz primed to continue his ascent to consistent [more]