cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
On 06/02/2014 01:03 AM in NFL

Cnotes NFL Preseason Previews of Teams - News - Notes - Selections and Whatever !

AFC West Preview

May 30, 2014

The NFL draft gets all the attention in the spring but the recent release of the 2014 schedule can be a more telling factor in how a team will fare next season. Take a look at the four teams in the AFC West in this schedule preview. Three teams from the West made the playoffs last season with the Broncos winning the AFC Championship. The schedules for this division are among the toughest in the NFL in 2014 however so a decline is very possible across the board.

Denver Broncos: From 1999 to 2007, there was a clear trend of the Super Bowl loser struggling the next season with seven of those nine runner-ups falling to a losing record the next season. The last two seasons, the Super Bowl loser wound up back in the conference championship game, but in the last 20 years, no Super Bowl loser has returned to the big game the next season, a troubling trend for the Broncos. Denver made some aggressive off-season moves notably bringing in DeMarcus Ware as the Broncos know that with Peyton Manning, the window for a championship is narrow at this stage in his career. Denver will face a much tougher schedule in 2014 after coasting to brilliant numbers in the regular season last year through one of the weakest schedules in the league. Denver has to play nine 2013 playoff teams this season as the AFC West plays the very tough NFC West teams and the Broncos will draw Indianapolis and Cincinnati as well as the entire AFC East.

Outside of the division, the Broncos have several very challenging road games, playing at Seattle, at New England, and at Cincinnati and in eight road games Denver faces teams that were a combined 75-53 last season. Denver has a stretch of three consecutive road games in November and the challenge of that run is increased by starting across the country in a huge game at New England. The primetime schedule could also wear on the Broncos with five night games ahead including having to play three division games following up primetime night games either Sunday or Monday. Denver is an older team and an early Week 4 bye might not be ideal. The first three games of the season are very tough with the Colts, Chiefs, and Seahawks in the first three weeks before the bye week. Denver also closes the season with three of the last five games on the road including potential cold weather games in Kansas City and Cincinnati. Early in the season, the Broncos will play the Chiefs, Seahawks, Cardinals, Jets, 49ers, and Chargers in succession as the offense will likely see a huge step back in production simply based on the quality of defenses faced compared with last season. Denver is still the team to beat in the AFC, but it will be a much tougher path in 2014.

Denver Broncos 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .570 (2/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 9 (four home, five away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 10,131
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2 including a back-to-back-to-back
Primetime Games: 5 (1 Thursday, 3 Sunday night, 1 Monday night)

Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs went from 2-14 to 11-5 in one season with Andy Reid. The schedule played a role but Kansas City had a lot of talent on the roster following the disastrous and tragic 2012 season. The Chiefs will be a prime candidate to slip in 2014 with a much tougher slate and the league better prepared for how the offense will look as the Chiefs were one of the early surprise teams last season. Kansas City had an epic meltdown in the playoffs last season which could be difficult to overcome, but if there is any consolation, the Chiefs have the easiest schedule in the division in terms of 2013 win percentage. Kansas City only plays three 2013 playoff teams outside of the division, though it is a very tough group featuring New England, San Francisco, and Seattle. The Chiefs get the Patriots and Seahawks at home as they will avoid two of the toughest venues in the league unlike some of the division counterparts. The schedule before a Week 6 bye is brutally tough with road games in Denver and San Francisco plus a Monday night game with the Patriots, but the slate is reasonable in the back half.

The final four road games of the season are all against teams that missed the playoffs in 2013 and the only set of back-to-back road games comes early in the year. The road games with San Diego and Denver come in relatively favorable situations for the Chiefs as they will catch the Broncos coming off a huge opening game with the Colts and they have a bye week before heading to San Diego. In a division race that could be very tight, it could make a huge difference if the Chiefs are able to steal a big road win in the division. The Chiefs will take on substantial travel miles this season despite being about as close to the middle of the country as can be as Kansas City plays every road game outside of its own central time zone. The Chiefs have a very difficult schedule and falling from 11 wins would not be a surprise, but this is not a team that should endure a significant collapse and Kansas City might actually have the best path in the division.

Kansas City Chiefs 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .559 (7/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 7 (four home, three away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 10,593
Back-to-Back road game sets: 1
Primetime Games: 3 (1 Thursday, 1 Sunday night, 1 Monday night)

Oakland Raiders: While the Raiders have been a dysfunctional franchise most of the last two decades with short term plans and a constant state of transition, there is a lot to like about what the Raiders did in the off-season. Oakland did some positive things last year in a 4-12 first season under Dennis Allen as they ran the ball with some success and were capable defensively especially against the run. The offense showed some promise even battling through three different starting quarterbacks and fighting injuries. Oakland picked up several quality veterans in free agency led by Matt Schaub to take over at quarterback as well as several pieces on defense. Oakland also had a draft class that was well reviewed led by Khalil Mack and several other defensive players to add depth. Unfortunately for the Raiders, success may have to wait another season as the AFC West looks like the most difficult division in the conference and Oakland has drawn one of the league’s absolute toughest schedules.

The Raiders will play nine games against 2013 playoff teams as a result of every game in the division fitting that role and the fourth place draw of Cleveland and Houston looks fairly daunting relative to most seasons as those teams could be greatly improved even in transition seasons. Oakland has road games at New England and at Seattle, nearly impossible places to win and the final month looks brutal with a home date with the 49ers and the road meetings with the Chiefs and Broncos. The first half of the schedule is more reasonable for the Raiders as they only play one winning team from 2013 in the first four weeks before the bye week in Week 5. That bye comes after a trip to London as the Raiders are surrendering a home game this season to make things even more challenging. Including the trip across the pond, the Raiders will travel over 20,000 miles for nine away games, by far the most travel miles in the league. If the Raiders do manage a respectable start to the season, they will face a gauntlet starting in November facing seven teams that were a combined 76-36 last season. The only primetime game of the season for the Raiders is a short week Thursday night game that follows up a huge division road game at San Diego as well. Expect the Raiders to be a competent team in 2014 but it might not show up in the standings.

Oakland Raiders 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .578 (1/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 9 (four home, five away)
Miles Traveled for 9 road/neutral games: 20,251 (includes London)
Back-to-Back road game sets: 1
Primetime Games: 1 (1 Thursday)

San Diego Chargers: With wins in the final four games of the regular season last year, the Chargers snuck into the playoffs and San Diego upset Cincinnati in the Wild Card round before falling narrowly against the Broncos. That late run and the resurgent season from Philip Rivers made it a very successful first season for head coach Mike McCoy. Expectations will be elevated moving forward and the Chargers will have a tough 2014 schedule along with the rest of the division. San Diego is a team that could create an early buzz in 2014 as they have a favorable early season schedule. They only play one 2013 playoff team in the first six weeks and while they do have to play the Seahawks, that game is at home and they catch Seattle off what will be a hyped opener with the Packers knowing that the Seahawks have a Super Bowl rematch in Week 3 as well. The Chargers also catch Denver in what could be a favorable Thursday night spot in Week 8, with the Broncos coming off a primetime game with a physical 49ers team the previous week and with the Broncos staring at the Patriots in the following game. As usual, this could be a Chargers team capable of beating some of the elite teams in the NFL, but also capable of losing to anyone. Houston, Oakland, and Washington combined to win nine games last season but three of those wins came against the Chargers.

San Diego has a late bye week in Week 10, but they will pay the price for the favorable early schedule with a brutally tough final five weeks. The Chargers play at Baltimore to close November before a December schedule that features teams that went 48-16 last season. The final two games of the season for San Diego are at San Francisco and then at Kansas City, with home games with New England and Denver before that. A 4-0 close to the season seems pretty unlikely for the Chargers in 2014, so San Diego will need a strong start to stay in contention late. San Diego has three East Coast games and significant overall travel as well and they have a few awkward primetime games with a Monday night game to open the season plus a late season Saturday game. Look for the Chargers to start the season looking like a serious contender, but this is a team that could limp into the postseason if they find a way to get there.

San Diego Chargers 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .563 (4/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 7 (four home, three away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 12,189
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 4 (1 Thursday, 1 Saturday, 1 Sunday night, 1 Monday night)


Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/02/2014 01:05 AM

AFC South Preview

May 24, 2014

The NFL draft gets all the attention in the spring but the recent release of the 2014 schedule can be a more telling factor in how a team will fare next season. Take a look at the four teams in the AFC South in this schedule preview. The Colts ran away with the division last season as the only winning team in the group but improvement is likely ahead for Tennessee, Jacksonville, and Houston even through some big changes. Whether there is enough to bridge the gap with the favorite in one season remains to be seen.

Houston Texans: Just about everything that could have gone wrong for the Texans went wrong last season as a team that had been expected to be a top AFC contender fell to just 2-14. While the poor results led to a coaching change, it also led to great position in the NFL Draft and a favorable schedule ahead in 2014 as the Texans will be a team expected to bounce back into contention. The quarterback position remains a key question mark for Bill O’Brien as he returns to the NFL as T.J. Yates and Case Keenum are back with limited starting experience and veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick has been added to the mix as Houston opted not to draft a quarterback early, but did pick Tom Savage in the later rounds. Houston will only play four games against 2013 playoff teams as a result of the fourth place schedule and the lone road game vs. a 2013 playoff team will come in the division at Indianapolis.

Houston will play just one 2013 playoff team in the first eight weeks of the schedule which could help in the transition season for the Texans. Houston does have significant travel on the schedule, including a West coast to East coast back-to-back set early in the season and a few other long flights. The Texans will also have to play on the road after a road Monday night appearance and there are three sets of back-to-back road games ahead. Houston is definitely a team that could see a turnaround with turnovers after having great misfortune early in the season to lose several close games, but the quarterback position is typically the key to improving in the turnover department and that is still an unsettled area for the team. Facing the AFC North and NFC East teams completes a relatively favorable schedule for this entire division and it is almost a certainty that the Texans will improve in the win column in 2014.

Houston Texans 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .441 (30/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 4 (three home, one away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 9,292
Back-to-Back road game sets: 3
Primetime Games: 2 (1 Thursday, 1 Monday Night)

Indianapolis Colts: The Colts made several moves to upgrade on offense in the offseason, but the defense certainly has some areas of concern, especially with the recent suspension looming for Robert Mathis. For back-to-back seasons, the Colts have won 11 games despite questionable point differentials and favorable bounces with turnovers and close game results, but this is a team that will be feared in the AFC picture again in 2014. Indianapolis went 6-0 in the division last season and the Colts will be favored to hit that mark again in 2014 with the rest of the division featuring two new coaching staffs and unproven quarterbacks. The Colts will face the weakest schedule in the NFL in terms of 2013 win percentage, thanks to the three division foes in the South combining to go 13-35 last season. The Colts will be the only team in the division to face New England and Denver, but three of the four games against 2013 playoff teams will come in Indianapolis where the Colts are 13-4 the last two seasons counting the comeback playoff win last year.

The only road game against a winning team from 2013 will be in the opener against the Broncos, a team Indianapolis beat last season. In the NFC East draw, the Colts will get the 2013 champion Eagles at home and in the AFC North draw the Colts will get the Ravens and Bengals at home for likely the preferable track in those games. The Colts have a Week 10 bye, which should come at a good time in the later part of the season and it comes before a huge game with the Patriots, the team that bounced the Colts from the playoffs last season. Indianapolis does have to play three of the final four games of the season on the road, but the final six games of the season will come against teams that combined to go 28-68 last season. Indianapolis also has very minimal travel requirements in terms of mileage with only two trips to the East coast and no games west of Denver. While the scoring and turnover numbers for the Colts cry for regression, Indianapolis has another great schedule to continue to pace this division.

Indianapolis Colts 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .430 (32/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 4 (three home, one away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 5,605
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 5 (1 Thursday, 2 Sunday Night, 2 Monday Night)

Jacksonville Jaguars: The Jaguars have the lowest win total projection in the NFL for 2014 and despite Jacksonville winning four games last season, the Jaguars had the worst point differential in the NFL at -202. Three wins for Jacksonville came within this division and with the Titans and Texans starting over with new coaching staffs, there may be an opportunity for the Jaguars to move up. Jacksonville rolled the dice with Blake Bortles as its top draft pick to inherit the quarterback position, but it is not yet clear if Jacksonville will proceed with the rookie in 2014 or if they will give him some time to develop. Jacksonville obviously had many other problem areas last season, but quarterback has been a glaring area of mistakes and limited production in recent seasons. Jacksonville will actually have a somewhat challenging schedule relative to its division foes as they play four road games against 2013 playoff teams and the Jaguars will surrender a home game to play in London. The Jaguars open the season with road games in three of the first four weeks with three of the first four games are also coming against 2013 playoff teams so a strong start to the season seems unlikely.

With the tough early schedule, it might be easy for Jacksonville to slip into a another year of rebuilding and go with Bortles to gain experience for 2015 as contending for the postseason seems like a long shot this season. Jacksonville also has tough road games at Cincinnati and at Baltimore late in the season and they play Tennessee and Houston three times in the final four weeks of the season, negating to chance to catch those division foes early in their transition seasons. Finishing in third place in the division last season also means playing San Diego and Miami, two quality teams that appear far ahead of the Jaguars and far ahead of the fourth place draw that Houston will get in 2014. All in all, the Jaguars were dealt arguably the toughest schedule in the AFC South and it could be another challenging season.

Jacksonville Jaguars 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .453 (29/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 5 (one home, four away)
Miles Traveled for 9 road/neutral games: 12,125 (includes London)
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 1 (1 Thursday)

Tennessee Titans: The Titans competed very well at times and were barely negative in point differential in a 7-9 season in 2013. After three lackluster seasons, Tennessee made a coaching change and they pulled in former Arizona head coach Ken Whisenhunt, who was a prominent candidate for several vacancies. The Titans will feature a brutally tough early season schedule in the transition with three of the first four games on the road and playing teams that combined to go 41-23 last season in the first four weeks. The schedule softens substantially in October for the Titans, but Tennessee has a very challenging road schedule overall this season with four 2013 playoff teams, plus a Ravens team only a season removed from a Super Bowl title. Tennessee has to take on the Chiefs and Jets in the second place draw and they will face NFC East champion Philadelphia on the road as well. Tennessee has another set of tough road games following its Week 9 bye and while the Titans will travel the third fewest miles in the league, it is a daunting road schedule overall.

Tennessee also drafted offensive players in the early rounds including offensive lineman Taylor Lewan in the first round, an area that seemingly already was a strong point for the team. The Titans impressed on defense early last season, but by the end of the year, it was a team that struggled down the stretch and the 7-9 record was a bit misleading as Tennessee won the final two games against Jacksonville and Houston, teams that had clearly mailed in the season and did not want to surrender draft position. The Titans also must replace Chris Johnson at running back and Tennessee has lacked playmakers in the receiving corps in recent seasons. Tennessee seems less likely than Houston to jump to immediate success with the coaching change in this division with the schedule playing a big role. The tough first month could lead to big questions and potential changes at key positions and Jake Locker is yet to prove he can stay healthy.

Tennessee Titans 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .438 (31/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 5 (one home, four away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 4,765
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 2 (1 Thursday, 1 Monday Night)

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/02/2014 01:06 AM

AFC North Preview

May 19, 2014

The NFL draft gets all the attention in the spring, but the recent release of the 2014 schedule can be a more telling factor in how a team will fare next season. Take a look at the four teams in the AFC North in this schedule preview. The Bengals, Ravens, and Steelers each have three division titles in the last nine years, but for a change the Browns have grabbed some of the spotlight this spring. The North should be a competitive division in 2014 with all four teams expecting to be in the playoff mix.

Baltimore Ravens: After the surprise Super Bowl run two seasons ago, the Ravens fell to 8-8 last season and missed the playoffs after blowout losses in the final two games of the season. The Ravens lost five of seven games in the middle of the season last season with each loss by six or fewer points, as this was a competitive team that was not far from being more of a factor in the AFC. After allowing 49 points in the opening game, the Ravens were formidable on defense most of the season until the final two weeks, but the offense was very disappointing, particularly in the running game. Highly-paid quarterback Joe Flacco also failed to reach 300 yards passing in any of the final 10 games of the season. Baltimore catches a break with a third-place schedule after losing the tiebreaker with Pittsburgh in the 2013 standings. It is certainly debatable whether playing San Diego and Miami is preferable to playing Kansas City and New York in that draw, however.

The entire North will play the AFC South this season, which should provide an opportunity for the North teams to move up in the AFC, but the NFC South draw could be challenging. Baltimore has one of the tougher draws among the division in those matchups having to play on the road against Indianapolis, Houston, and New Orleans. The Ravens open the season with three consecutive division games, so Baltimore will know where it stands early and getting the road trip to Cleveland in early should be an advantage given the transition for the Browns. The Ravens will actually have five of the six division games complete by Week 9 and the back half of the schedule looks more favorable than the front, as Baltimore plays teams that combined to go 18-46 last season in the final four weeks.

Baltimore Ravens 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .461 (28/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (three home, three away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 6,425
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 3 (1 Thursday, 1 Sunday Night, 1 Monday)

Cincinnati Bengals: The Bengals have improved in the win column four straight seasons, making the playoffs each of the last three years, despite going 0-3 in the postseason. The Bengals have the most stability in the division which is a surprise given the tumultuous run for this franchise in the previous two decades. The 2014 schedules does not look overly difficult with only five games against 2013 playoff teams and one of the weaker win percentages for opponents based on last season’s record. That said, the Bengals are the only team in the division that has to play Denver or New England, getting both of them in primetime games this season. In a very tough first half of the schedule, the Bengals will play both games with Baltimore, plus games with three 2013 playoffs teams in the first eight weeks.

Cincinnati will also have to play three consecutive road games in November, going from New Orleans to Houston, and then to Tampa Bay. The final four weeks could be very tough with home games against the Steelers and Broncos and road division games in cold weather against the Browns and Steelers. Cincinnati has to play five of the final seven games of the season on the road as Cincinnati has what looks like the toughest schedule in the division, also having to play at Indianapolis and at New Orleans. Denver and Seattle were the only two teams in the NFL to have a stronger point differential than the Bengals last season, so this has to be considered an elite team, but it would not be a surprise to see a slight decline for the Bengals in 2014.

Cincinnati Bengals 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .469 (23/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 5 (two home, three away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 4,857
Back-to-Back road game sets: 1 back-to-back-to-back
Primetime Games: 3 (1 Thursday, 1 Sunday Night, 1 Monday)

Cleveland Browns: The Browns have been in the news a lot this spring, some of it with excitement with Johnny Manziel drafted, but Cleveland also was dealt very tough news with Josh Gordon potentially suspended for the season after his breakout 2013 season. Cleveland had to go through three quarterbacks last season and finding stability at that position has been a constant challenge for the organization. Adding Manziel to look over Brian Hoyer’s shoulder may not be the ideal approach, but Hoyer was not able to stay healthy last season. The schedule for the Browns in 2014 looks promising with only two 2013 playoff teams on the schedule in the first 13 weeks. That lighter slate early could ease the coaching transition with Mike Pettine taking over this season. The Browns lost the final seven games of last season and another tough finish could be ahead with four of the final six games on the road and a closing slate of Indianapolis, Cincinnati, at Carolina, at Baltimore.

Each of the last three seasons, Cleveland has gone 1-7 on the road, but there are winnable road games on the schedule this season, playing at Tennessee, at Jacksonville, at Atlanta, and at Buffalo outside of the division. Cleveland will have the second-lightest travel schedule in the NFL in terms of distance, going fewer than 4,000 miles for eight road games with no game further west than Nashville. While the excitement is growing in Cleveland and the Browns will get more national play in the media this season, breaking out of the basement in the division still seems like a long shot.

Cleveland Browns 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .465 (26/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 5 (three home, two away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 3,634
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 1 (1 Thursday)

Pittsburgh Steelers: The Steelers wound up 8-8 last season despite starting 0-4 and eventually sitting at 2-6 at the midpoint of the season. Pittsburgh’s late season surge still left them short of the playoffs and it was an atypical Steelers squad that really struggled defensively. The Steelers were also a very poor rushing team on offense and Pittsburgh draws a second-place schedule in 2014. Pittsburgh has the fewest travel miles in 2014 of any team in the NFL as they will not travel further west than Nashville, but the Steelers will have some tough travel situations with four separate sets of back-to-back road games. Despite missing the playoffs the last two seasons, Pittsburgh will play five primetime games including playing three national TV night games in a five-week span in the middle of the season. Pittsburgh had a painful start to the 2013 season, but on paper, a more promising first half seems likely even with four of the first six games on the road.

Four of the first six opponents this season won four or fewer games last season, so the Steelers could rise to the top of the division early. Both games with the Bengals are in the final five weeks of the season as are tricky home games with New Orleans and Kansas City as well as a road date with the Falcons as the closing month will be challenging. The Steelers are one of two teams to have a late Week 12 bye, the latest in the league, and it will remain to be seen if a team that was injury plagued the past two seasons can hold up without a break for much of the season.

Pittsburgh Steelers 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .469 (23/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (four home, two away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 3,537
Back-to-Back road game sets: 4
Primetime Games: 5 (1 Thursday, 2 Sunday Night, 2 Monday)

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/02/2014 01:10 AM

Flacco eager to get started anew under Kubiak

May 29, 2014


OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) - Fifteen months after winning the Super Bowl, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is attempting to rebound from the most disappointing season of his NFL career.

After guiding the Ravens to the championship in February 2013, Flacco threw 22 interceptions last season - 10 more than in any of his previous five seasons - and his 73.1 quarterback rating was the lowest of his career.

Even worse, the Ravens went 8-8 and missed the playoffs for the first time since his arrival in Baltimore.

''It was not a good year all around,'' Flacco said Thursday after a team offseason practice session. ''We didn't win enough football games, and the biggest thing is just taking care of the football. That's my No. 1 job.''

The Ravens worked hard this offseason to help Flacco bounce back. They hired Gary Kubiak as offensive coordinator and signed several new receivers, including veteran free agents Steve Smith and tight end Owen Daniels. Baltimore also re-signed wide receiver Joe Jacoby and tight end Dennis Pitta, two key players in the Super Bowl win over San Francisco.

''There's no doubt about it, we've got some weapons out there,'' Flacco said. ''These guys can all run, they can all go get the ball, they can catch. They're strong, they're physical. Every single one of them. I feel good about where we are out there.''

Kubiak takes over for Jim Caldwell, who left to become head coach of the Lions. Kubiak has been working diligently to install a new West Coast offense, and Flacco has been toiling even harder to get a grasp on the system.

If nothing else, it's been a different kind of offseason for the quarterback.

''Probably more similar to my rookie year I guess, because you're learning a new offense and have a couple new players and things like that,'' Flacco said. ''But I'm excited about it. It brings new challenges, and that makes it fun.''

Head coach John Harbaugh and Flacco came to the Ravens at the same time in 2008. Harbaugh was hired to replace Brian Billick and Flacco was a first-round draft choice out of Delaware. Together, they took Baltimore to the postseason for five straight years. Last season, the string ended

Eager to get another playoff streak going, Flacco has been poring over the playbook and trying his best to take his newfound knowledge to the line of scrimmage. The process hasn't always been smooth, but it's a long time until training camp starts.

''I think he's very businesslike about it,'' Harbaugh said. ''He's got a lot to learn. There's a lot of offense on his plate right now, there's a lot of communication. It's all different.''

On a soggy field during the last week of May, Flacco showed the arm strength that enabled him to earn a $120.6 million, six-year contract in the weeks following his Super Bowl triumph.

''Far hash, 20-yard comeback, the ball is pretty close to numbers-high. That's always a tell-tale sign of a good quarterback,'' Smith said. "We're both learning the system and learning each other.''

Unfortunately for Harbaugh, his offseason focus hasn't been entirely on Xs and Os. Four players have been arrested, most notably Ray Rice on assault charges for allegedly striking his fiancee in Atlantic City in February.

Offensive lineman Jah Reid was charged with battery for an incident outside a Florida strip club; receiver Deonte Thompson was arrested and charged with suspicion of possessing marijuana and drug paraphernalia; and last weekend rookie running back Lorenzo Taliaferro was arrested for breaking the window of a taxi cab.

This did not sit well with Harbaugh, who addressed the team Wednesday.

''There have been a lot more phone calls this year than other years to find out what the heck some guys are thinking at times,'' he said. ''I'm disappointed with some of the silliness that's going on. Character really matters to us. You don't do the right thing just because you call a cab. How about we start out with the idea that we're not going to go out and drink?''

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/03/2014 12:31 AM

Win Totals - LVH vs. CG

May 21, 2014

The Las Vegas Hotel & Casino (LVH) released their 2014 NFL Win Totals for all 32 teams on Sunday May 18.

Two months earlier, CG Technologies (CGTGlobal), formerly known as Cantor Gaming, opened their 2014 regular season numbers this March.

Based on their opening win totals, the two major sportsbooks in Las Vegas have different opinions on nine different teams.

Looking at the below table, the LVH has a higher rating on the three teams:

N.Y. Giants
N.Y. Jets
Washington Redskins

The six teams that Cantor opened higher than the LVH are listed below:

Carolina Panthers
Houston Texans
Kansas City Chiefs
Minnesota Vikings
San Francisco 49ers
Tennessee Titans

Listed below are all of the opening win totals from the LVH and Cantor, plus last year’s record for each club.

2014 NFL WIN TOTALS

TEAM LVH OVER/UNDER CG OVER/UNDER 2013 RECORD

ARIZONA 7 ½ OV -125 7 ½ OV -125 10-6

ATLANTA 8 OV -130 8 OV -130 4-12

BALTIMORE 8 ½ OV -120 8 ½ 8-8

BUFFALO 6 ½ OV -130 6 ½ 6-10

CAROLINA 8 OV -130 8 ½ OV -130 12-4

CHICAGO 8 OV -140 8 ½ UN -115 8-8

CINCINNATI 9 OV -135 9 OV -115 11-5

CLEVELAND 6 ½ OV -150 6 ½ 4-12

DALLAS 8 8 OV -115 8-8

DENVER 11 OV -140 11 UN -125 13-3

DETROIT 8 OV -150 8 OV -125 7-9

GREEN BAY 10 OV -145 10 OV -120 8-7-1

HOUSTON 7 ½ OV -145 8 UN -115 2-14

INDIANAPOLIS 9 ½ UN -150 9 ½ 11-5

JACKSONVILLE 4 ½ OV -150 4 ½ OV -135 4-12

KANSAS CITY 8 OV -120 8 ½ OV -140 11-5

MIAMI 8 UN -130 7 ½ OV -135 8-8

MINNESOTA 6 UN -120 7 5-10-1

NEW ENGLAND 10 ½ OV -130 10 ½ OV -130 12-4

NEW ORLEANS 9 ½ OV -150 9 ½ OV -125 11-5

N.Y. GIANTS 7 ½ OV -135 7 OV -140 7-9

N.Y. JETS 7 OV -125 6 ½ OV -155 8-8

OAKLAND 5 UN -150 5 UN -115 4-12

PHILADELPHIA 9 UN -135 9 OV -115 10-6

PITTSBURGH 8 ½ OV -120 8 ½ OV -120 8-8

ST. LOUIS 7 ½ 7 OV -145 7-9

SAN DIEGO 8 OV -120 8 OV -125 9-7

SAN FRANCISCO 10 ½ OV -120 11 UN -135 12-4

SEATTLE 11 OV -120 11 OV -115 13-3

TAMPA BAY 7 OV -120 7 4-12

TENNESSEE 7 OV -130 6 ½ OV -115 7-9

WASHINGTON 7 ½ UN -145 7 3-13

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/03/2014 12:37 AM

Odds posted for Week 1-16

May 21, 2014

CG Technologies (CGTGlobal) in Las Vegas, formerly known as Cantor Gaming, has released point-spreads for the first 16 weeks of the 2014 NFL regular season.

Week 1 starts on Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014.

Week 8-16

Week 1

Away Home

Green Bay Packers Seattle Seahawks (-5, 44.5) THURSDAY

New Orleans Saints Atlanta Falcons (-1, 51.5)

Minnesota Vikings St. Louis Rams (-4.5, 45.5)

Cleveland Browns Pittsburgh Steelers (-5, 40.5)

Jacksonville Jaguars Philadelphia Eagles (-11, 52)

Oakland Raiders New York Jets (-4.5, 40)

Cincinnati Bengals Baltimore Ravens (-2.5, 43)

Buffalo Bills Chicago Bears (-6.5, 48.5)

Washington Redskins Houston Texans (-2.5, 46)

Tennessee Titans Kansas City Chiefs (-5, 44)

New England Patriots (-3.5, 47.5) Miami Dolphins

Carolina Panthers (-2, 40.5) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

San Francisco 49ers (-3.5, 48) Dallas Cowboys

Indianapolis Colts Denver Broncos (-7, 55.5)

New York Giants Detroit Lions (-4, 46)

San Diego Chargers Arizona Cardinals (-3 -115, 44.5)



Week 2

Away Home

Pittsburgh Steelers Baltimore Ravens (-2 -120) THURSDAY

Atlanta Falcons Cincinnati Bengals (-3)

New Orleans Saints (-2.5) Cleveland Browns

New England Patriots (-3 -115) Minnesota Vikings

Detroit Lions Carolina Panthers (-3.5)

Miami Dolphins Buffalo Bills (-1)

Arizona Cardinals New York Giants (-3)

Jacksonville Jaguars Washington Redskins (-9)

Dallas Cowboys (-2.5) Tennessee Titans

Seattle Seahawks (-2.5) San Diego Chargers

St. Louis Rams Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2.5)

New York Jets Green Bay Packers (-8.5)

Kansas City Chiefs Denver Broncos (-7)

Houston Texans (-2.5) Oakland Raiders

Chicago Bears San Francisco 49ers (-7)

Philadelphia Eagles Indianapolis Colts (-2.5)



Week 3

Away Home

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Atlanta Falcons (-5.5) THURSDAY

Baltimore Ravens Cleveland Browns (PK)

Green Bay Packers (-1) Detroit Lions

Tennessee Titans Cincinnati Bengals (-7)

San Diego Chargers Buffalo Bills (-1)

Indianapolis Colts (-6) Jacksonville Jaguars

Oakland Raiders New England Patriots (-13)

Minnesota Vikings New Orleans Saints (-10)

Houston Texans New York Giants (-4)

Washington Redskins Philadelphia Eagles (-4.5)

Dallas Cowboys St. Louis Rams (PK)

San Francisco 49ers (-2.5) Arizona Cardinals

Kansas City Chiefs Miami Dolphins (PK)

Denver Broncos Seattle Seahawks (-3.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers Carolina Panthers (-3.5)

Chicago Bears New York Jets (PK) MONDAY



Week 4

Away Home

New York Giants Washington Redskins (-1.5) THURSDAY

Tennessee Titans Indianapolis Colts (-7.5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5)

Green Bay Packers Chicago Bears (-1.5)

Carolina Panthers Baltimore Ravens (-1)

Buffalo Bills Houston Texans (-5)

Detroit Lions (-1) New York Jets

** Miami Dolphins (-5) Oakland Raiders

Jacksonville Jaguars San Diego Chargers (-10)

Atlanta Falcons (-1) Minnesota Vikings

Philadelphia Eagles San Francisco 49ers (-6)

New Orleans Saints Dallas Cowboys (PK)

New England Patriots Kansas City Chiefs (-1) MONDAY

**Game play at Wembley Stadium, London, England



Week 5

Away Home

Minnesota Vikings Green Bay Packers (-10) THURSDAY

Buffalo Bills Detroit Lions (-7.5)

Houston Texans Dallas Cowboys (-4.5)

Chicago Bears Carolina Panthers (-3.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers (-6.5) Jacksonville Jaguars

Baltimore Ravens Indianapolis Colts (-3)

Cleveland Browns Tennessee Titans (-2.5)

St. Louis Rams Philadelphia Eagles (-6)

Atlanta Falcons New York Giants (-2.5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers New Orleans Saints (-7.5)

Arizona Cardinals Denver Broncos (-9)

Kansas City Chiefs San Francisco (-7)

New York Jets San Diego Chargers (-4)

Cincinnati Bengals New England Patriots (-4)

Seattle Seahawks (-4.5) Washington Redskins MONDAY



Week 6

Away Home

Indianapolis Colts Houston Texans (-1) THURSDAY

Detroit Lions (-1) Minnesota Vikings

Green Bay Packers (-2.5) Miami Dolphins

Pittsburgh Steelers Cleveland Browns (PK)

Carolina Panthers Cincinnati Bengals (-2)

New England Patriots (-3.5) Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears Atlanta Falcons (-3)

Denver Broncos (-6) New York Jets

Jacksonville Jaguars Tennessee Titans (-7)

Baltimore Ravens Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-1)

San Diego Chargers (-2.5) Oakland Raiders

Dallas Cowboys Seattle Seahawks (-7.5)

Washington Redskins Arizona Cardinals (-4)

New York Giants Philadelphia Eagles (-4.5)

San Francisco 49ers (-4.5) St. Louis Rams MONDAY


Week 7

Away Home

New York Jets New England Patriots (-7.5)

New Orleans Saints Detroit Lions (-1.5)

Miami Dolphins Chicago Bears (-6)

Minnesota Vikings Buffalo Bills (-2.5)

Atlanta Falcons Baltimore Ravens (-3)

Carolina Panthers Green Bay Packers (-4)

Tennessee Titans Washington Redskins (-3.5)

Seattle Seahawks (-6) St. Louis Rams

Cleveland Browns (-2.5) Jacksonville Jaguars

Cincinnati Bengals Indianapolis Colts (-2.5)

Kansas City Chiefs San Diego Chargers (-2)

Arizona Cardinals (-3.5) Oakland Raiders

New York Giants Dallas Cowboys (-3.5)

San Francisco 49ers Denver Broncos (-3)

Houston Texans Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5)

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/03/2014 12:43 AM

NFL Odds - Week 8-16

May 21, 2014

Week 8

Away Home

San Diego Chargers Denver Broncos (-8.5) THURSDAY

** Detroit Lions (-1) Atlanta Falcons

Houston Texas Tennessee Titans (PK)

Seattle Seahawks (-1.5) Carolina Panthers

Baltimore Ravens Cincinnati Bengals (-3)

Miami Dolphins (-4) Jacksonville Jaguars

St. Louis Rams Kansas City Chiefs (-6.5)

Chicago Bears New England Patriots (-4.5)

Buffalo Bills New York Jets (-2.5)

Minnesota Vikings Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3)

Philadelphia Eagles Arizona Cardinals (-2)

Oakland Raiders Cleveland Browns (-4.5)

Indianapolis Colts Pittsburgh Steelers (-2)

Green Bay Packers New Orleans Saints (-2.5)

Washington Redskins Dallas Cowboys (-4.5) MONDAY

**Game play at Wembley Stadium, London, England



Week 9

Away Home

New Orleans Saints Carolina Panthers (-2.5) THURSDAY

Tampa Buccaneers Cleveland Browns (-2.5)

Jacksonville Jaguars Cincinnati Bengals, (-11)

Arizona Cardinals Dallas Cowboys (-3.5)

Philadelphia Eagles Houston Texans (PK)

New York Jets Kansas City Chiefs (-6)

San Diego Chargers Miami Dolphins (-2.5)

Washington Redskins Minnesota Vikings (-1.5)

St. Louis Rams San Francisco 49ers (-11)

Denver Broncos New England Patriots (-1)
Oakland Raiders Seattle Seahawks (-14.5)

Baltimore Ravens Pittsburgh Steelers (-2.5)

Indianapolis Colts New York Giants (-1) MONDAY



Week 10

Away Home

Cleveland Browns Cincinnati Bengals (-6.5) THURSDAY

Tennessee Titans Baltimore Ravens (-6)

Kansas City Chiefs (-2) Buffalo Bills

Miami Dolphins Detroit Lions (-5)

** Dallas Cowboys (-10) Jacksonville Jaguars

San Francisco 49ers New Orleans Saints (-1.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers (-2) New York Jets

Atlanta Falcons Tampa Bay Buccaneers (PK)

Denver Broncos (-10) Oakland Raiders

St. Louis Rams Arizona Cardinals (-4)

New York Giants Seattle Seahawks (-10)

Chicago Bears Green Bay Packers (-6)

Carolina Panthers Philadelphia Eagles (-1) MONDAY

**Game play at Wembley Stadium, London, England



Week 11

Away Home

Buffalo Bills Miami Dolphins (-3.5) THURSDAY

Minnesota Vikings Chicago Bears (-7)

Atlanta Falcons Carolina Panthers (-4)

Houston Texans Cleveland Browns (-1.5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Washington Redskins (-2.5)

Denver Broncos (-4.5) St. Louis Rams

San Francisco 49ers (-3 (-120)) New York Giants

Cincinnati Bengals New Orleans Saints (-4)

Seattle Seahawks (-2.5) Kansas City Chiefs

Philadelphia Eagles Green Bay Packers (-4.5)

Oakland Raiders San Diego Chargers (-8)

Detroit Lions Arizona Cardinals (-2.5)

New England Patriots Indianapolis Colts (-1)

Pittsburgh Steelers (-2) Tennessee Titans MONDAY



Week 12

Away Home

Kansas City Chiefs (-4) Oakland Raiders THURSDAY

Jacksonville Jaguars Indianapolis Colts (-12)

Cincinnati Bengals Houston Texans (PK)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Chicago Bears (-6)

New York Jets Buffalo Bills (-2.5)

Cleveland Browns Atlanta Falcons (-7 even)

Green Bay Packers (-4.5) Minnesota Vikings

Tennessee Titans Philadelphia Eagles (-7)

Detroit Lions New England Patriots (-6)

St. Louis Rams San Diego Chargers (-4)

Arizona Cardinals Seattle Seahawks (-10.5)

Washington Redskins San Francisco 49ers (-8.5)

Miami Dolphins Denver Broncos (-10)

Dallas Cowboys New York Giants (-2.5)

Baltimore Ravens New Orleans Saints (-6.5) MONDAY



Week 13

Away Home

Chicago Bears Detroit Lions (-3) THURSDAY

Philadelphia Eagles Dallas Cowboys (-1.5) THURSDAY

Seattle Seahawks San Francisco 49ers (-2.5) THURSDAY

Oakland Raiders St. Louis Rams (-5.5)

Cincinnati Bengals Tampa Bay Buccaneers (PK)

San Diego Chargers Baltimore Ravens (-3)

Cleveland Browns Buffalo Bills (-2.5)

Tennessee Titans Houston Texans (-5)

Washington Redskins Indianapolis Colts (-6)

New York Giants (-5.5) Jacksonville Jaguars

Carolina Panthers (-3) Minnesota Vikings

New Orleans Saints Pittsburgh Steelers (-2.5)

Arizona Cardinals Atlanta Falcons (-4)

New England Patriots Green Bay Packers (-3.5)

Denver Broncos (-3) Kansas City Chiefs

Miami Dolphins New York Jets (-1) MONDAY



Week 14

Away Home

Dallas Cowboys Chicago Bears (-4.5) THURSDAY

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Detroit Lions (-6)

Houston Texans (-4) Jacksonville Jaguars

Indianapolis Colts (-1) Cleveland Browns

Pittsburgh Steelers Cincinnati Bengals (-3)

Baltimore Ravens Miami Dolphins (PK)

St. Louis Rams Washington Redskins (-2.5)

New York Jets Minnesota Vikings (-2)

Carolina Panthers New Orleans Saints (-3.5)

New York Giants (-1) Tennessee Titans

Kansas City Chiefs Arizona Cardinals (-2)

Buffalo Bills Denver Broncos (-11.5)

San Francisco 49ers (-7) Oakland Raiders

Seattle Seahawks (-1) Philadelphia Eagles

New England Patriots (-1) San Diego Chargers

Atlanta Falcons Green Bay Packers (-6.5) MONDAY



Week 15

Away Home

Arizona Cardinals St. Louis (-1) THURSDAY

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Carolina Panthers (-6.5)

Green Bay Packers (-4.5) Buffalo Bills

Jacksonville Jaguars Baltimore Ravens (-10.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers Atlanta Falcons (-3.5)

Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5) Cleveland Browns

Washington Redskins New York Giants (-3.5)

Minnesota Vikings Detroit Lions (-7)

Houston Texans Indianapolis Colts (-4.5)

Oakland Raiders Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5)

Miami Dolphins New England Patriots (-6.5)

Denver Broncos (-3.5) San Diego Chargers

New York Jets Tennessee Titans (-1.5)

San Francisco 49ers Seattle Seahawks (-3.5)

Dallas Cowboys Philadelphia Eagles (-3)

New Orleans Saints Chicago Bears (-3) MONDAY



Week 16

Away Home

Tennessee Titans (-3) Jacksonville Jaguars THURSDAY

Philadelphia Eagles (-1.5) Washington Redskins SATURDAY

San Diego Chargers San Francisco 49ers (-7) SATURDAY

Cleveland Browns Carolina Panthers (-7.5)

Detroit Lions Chicago Bears (-4)

Baltimore Ravens Houston Texans (-1)

Minnesota Vikings Miami Dolphins (-4)

Atlanta Falcons New Orleans Saints (-6.5)

New England Patriots (-3) New York Jets

Kansas City Chiefs Pittsburgh Steelers (-1.5)

Green Bay Packers (-3) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

New York Giants St. Louis Rams (-3)

Indianapolis Colts Dallas Cowboys (-2.5)

Buffalo Bills (-1) Oakland Raiders

Seattle Seahawks (-3.5) Arizona Cardinals

Denver Broncos (-1.5) Cincinnati Bengals


Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/03/2014 12:46 AM

AFC East Preview

May 14, 2014

The NFL draft gets all the attention in the spring, but the recent release of the 2014 schedule can be a more telling factor in how a team will fare next season. Take a look at the four teams in the AFC East in this schedule preview. This certainly looks like New England’s division to lose with the East title in 10 of the last 11 seasons for the Patriots, but this could be a competitive division from top-to-bottom with another year under the belt for three young starting quarterbacks for the Bills, Dolphins, and Jets.

Buffalo Bills: The Bills have not won a division title since 1995 and the odds will be steep on Buffalo ending the streak this season. Buffalo has not had a winning season since 2004 and the Bills have not made the playoffs since 1999. In a transition season with first year head coach Doug Marrone last season, Buffalo wound up 6-10 but there were some impressive performances with the Bills scoring 20 or more points in the first seven games of last season including getting wins over Carolina and Baltimore. Buffalo won three division games last season and E.J. Manuel did enough to lead to some optimism for the future, especially with the draft pick of Sammy Watkins coming in this season to boost the offense. Buffalo will play a reasonable schedule in 2014 with only two road games against 2013 playoff teams and only one trip to the West coast. Buffalo has a central Week 9 bye week and they don’t have to give up a home game to play in Toronto for a change this season.

Buffalo will draw winnable home games outside of the division with Minnesota and Cleveland visiting and they will catch teams in coaching transitions early in the season facing the Texans, Lions, and Vikings in the first half of the season. The Bills do have a daunting December schedule with road games in three of the final four weeks, including trips to Denver and New England with the home game coming against Green Bay. That means the start of the season will be even more critical for Buffalo. Making the playoffs seems like a reach with the Bills and the rest of the AFC East facing an AFC West division that produced three 2013 playoff teams, but the NFC North was a weak division last season and that is the inter-conference draw for this division. Finishing in fourth place last season allows the Bills to play the Browns, but drawing Houston might not feel like a fourth-place game if the Texans bounce back after a bizarre 2013 season.

Buffalo Bills 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .500 (14/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (four home, two away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 8,822
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 1 (one Thursday)

Miami Dolphins: Despite great distractions last season, Miami wound up 8-8 and by virtue of losing the tiebreaker with the Jets, the Dolphins will score a third-place schedule this season. Miami had a negative point differential despite the even record, but the Dolphins should have stability as Joe Philbin remains at head coach through the Richie Incognito scandal and Ryan Tannehill will lead the Dolphins for a third straight season, a rarity in recent years for this franchise. The Dolphins were a worse team statistically than the record indicated and 2013 was a year of streaks for the team, starting 3-0 before losing four straight games and also winning four of five late in the season. Miami was 8-6 heading into division games in the final two weeks of the season against the Bills and the Jets before getting outscored 39-7 in the two final games to blow a chance at the playoffs. Five of the eight wins came by four or fewer points last season, so this is a team that could head backwards without some of the same fortune but the Dolphins also four games by four or fewer points in 2013.

Miami opens the season with the Patriots and Chiefs in the first two home games of the season and the Dolphins will only play seven true road games as they take on the Raiders in London. That trip comes early in the season in Week 4 as the Dolphins have an early Week 5 bye. November may be the key month for Miami with games at home against San Diego and Buffalo and road games against Detroit, Denver, and the Jets. To have a shot at the playoffs, Miami likely needs to be able to come through that stretch at .500 heading into the final four weeks where they host three of the final four games. The Dolphins have four of six games against 2013 playoff teams at home and because they play in London, the Dolphins do not travel further west than Denver this season as five road games come in the Eastern time zone.

Miami Dolphins 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .508 (12/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (four home, two away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 13,835 (includes London)
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 5 (one Thursday, three Sunday night, one Monday)

New England Patriots: The Patriots have won the AFC East 10 of the last 11 years, only falling short in an 11-5 campaign in the season that Tom Brady was injured. This has been one of the most consistently successful franchises in professional sports for the last decade and there is little reason to expect much of a decline in 2014, coming off a 12-4 season where New England eventually lost in the AFC Championship. New England will open the season with three of the first four games of the season on the road for a challenging start to the season, but it is not a daunting stretch of games with only two of the first eight games of the season coming against teams that had a winning record last season. New England does have four road games against 2014 playoff teams and they have some challenging back-to-back sets ahead, playing Kansas City and Cincinnati, Chicago and Denver, and Green Bay and San Diego in back-to-back weeks throughout the season.

New England will play five primetime games, including three Sunday night games if the schedule holds, so there will be some late night travel and taxing scheduling ahead for the Patriots. The first-place schedule brings the Colts and Bengals on the schedule and New England was only 4-2 in division games last season with several of those wins coming in very tight games despite this being a relatively weak division last season. The Patriots had shaky defensive statistics last season despite a strong scoring margin and New England was just 4-4 in road games last season, as this team has over-performed its talent in recent years. The track record for New England on personnel decisions and in coaching is impressive and with three young quarterbacks and three coaches with questionable track records in the division, it seems likely that a sixth consecutive division title is very possible even with a fairly difficult 2014 slate.

New England Patriots 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2013: .516 (10/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (two home, four away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 10,181
Back-to-Back road game sets: 2
Primetime Games: 5 (one Thursday, three Sunday night, one Monday)

New York Jets: The Jets were expected to be at the bottom of the league last season after a summer full of problems. New York surprised many with an 8-8 season, though the Jets were -97 in point differential. New York has made a lot of moves to upgrade the offense, but improving on the mistakes that Geno Smith made last season will be of critical importance for the Jets to stay competitive. New York had wins over both New England and New Orleans last season and at times the defense was very impressive, but the Jets also allowed 30 or more points four times last season. The 2014 schedule features a second-place slate, but that may not be such a bad thing as Pittsburgh and Tennessee are the two teams drawn, hardly overly threatening second-place teams. The Jets do have four road games against 2013 playoff teams and the early season schedule is challenging with three consecutive games against the NFC facing the Packers, Bears, and Lions in consecutive weeks before a tough October lines up with games against the Chargers, Broncos, and Patriots in succession. That start could lead to disaster and major personnel moves unless the Jets pick up an upset or two.

The tough first half schedule should make the opener against Oakland of paramount importance. If New York can survive without digging too big of a hole in the first half, the second half schedule is favorable. The final four road games are not overly daunting playing at Buffalo, at Minnesota, and at Tennessee before the season finale at Miami. The Jets do face a Thursday game and two Monday night games so there will be some short week games ahead which can take a toll. The Jets have a late Week 11 bye week and overall fairly reasonable travel outside of the cross country trek to San Diego in Week 5.

New York Jets 2014 Schedule Numbers:
2014 Opponents Win Percentage in 2012: .520 (9/32)
Games vs. 2013 Playoff Teams: 6 (two home, four away)
Miles Traveled for 8 road/neutral games: 9,043
Back-to-Back road game sets: 1
Primetime Games: 3 (one Thursday, two Monday)

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:27388 Followers:33
06/04/2014 01:18 AM

Former Trojans battle for Eagles' No. 2 job

June 3, 2014


PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Matt Barkley followed Mark Sanchez at USC and set school records in nearly every statistical passing category.

The former Trojans are teammates now, and they're battling for the same job.

Sanchez, a 2009 first-round pick who led the New York Jets to consecutive AFC championship games in his first two NFL seasons, signed a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles in March. Nick Foles is the starter after a sensational breakout year, so Sanchez will compete with Barkley for the backup spot.

''If my role is going to be to help Nick get ready for the season, help Nick get ready for Week 1 or preseason games, I'm going to be ready for whatever they need me to do,'' Sanchez said during his first organized team activities with his new team. ''It's nice to be with somebody like Nick who really works hard, who wants to compete, who wants to throw a couple extra after practice.''

Sanchez spent last season on injured reserve after tearing the labrum in his right shoulder in a preseason game. Geno Smith took over as the starter for the Jets, and they signed Michael Vick from the Eagles early in free agency, making Sanchez expendable.

He quickly landed in Philadelphia, where he gets a chance to play in Chip Kelly's up-tempo offense. Sanchez saw it in college from the opposite sideline when Kelly coached at Oregon.

''I think what they did last year was just the tip of the iceberg for these guys,'' Sanchez said. ''If we continue to work, if we continue to improve, that was the real enticing thing.''

Barkley was pressed into action as a rookie when Foles and Vick were injured last year. He threw four interceptions and lost a fumble in four quarters over two games.

He's far more comfortable this time around.

''It feels like my offense now,'' he said. ''Last year, it felt like it was Oregon's offense. It feels like the offense that I've been running for a while now. All of the calls, all the checks, it just comes to you quickly without having to think about it now.''

Barkley could've been a top-five pick if he left school after his junior year, but he returned as a Heisman Trophy front-runner with a chance to lead USC to a national championship. Neither happened, and Barkley finished his career watching his teammates play in a bowl game from the sideline with his arm in a sling after a shoulder injury.

There were questions about his arm strength last year, but Barkley said he's pain-free and feels fine now.

''I feel like I have more torque, more velocity on the ball,'' he said. ''I feel confident in being able to put it anywhere I need to.''

Barkley rewrote the conference record book during a USC-record 47 starts over four seasons, becoming the Pac-12's leader in touchdown passes, yards passing, completions and total offense. He impressed Kelly in four games against Oregon and was selected in the fourth round.

Foles, a third-round pick by Andy Reid just a year earlier, began the year as Vick's backup before taking over in October. Foles led the Eagles to the NFC East title and threw 29 touchdowns and only two interceptions in 11 starts, including a playoff loss to New Orleans. He also had the third-highest passer rating (119.2) in league history.

But with injuries always a risk, Kelly wanted depth behind Foles.

''With the quarterback specifically, I've said it all along you better have two,'' Kelly said. ''You look at Aaron Rodgers. Peyton Manning missed a year. Tom Brady missed a year.''

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
theseer Posts:9 Followers:0
06/04/2014 03:16 PM

The Packers will not be a good pick in pre-season as they will play the #3, #2 strings losing ATS.