Tag Archive | Cincinnati Bengals

2015 NFL Mock Draft 1.0

By Ryan Crawford

The hot commodities of this draft include the two intriguing quarterbacks, two high level running backs, a batch of very good interior defensive linemen, three dynamite edge rushers and a group of wide receivers that just might rival last years extraordinary crop. Here’s my initial mock draft for 2015. There’s sure to be many changes before long.

1. TAMPA BAY BUCS – Jameis Winston – QB – Florida State
Lovie Smith and the Bucs badly need a franchise quarterback and Jameis Winston can be that guy. Questions about his maturity and too many interceptions are the major red flags. I think the Bucs jump at the opportunity to snag such a high level QB prospect and hope the potential problems work themselves out.
 
2. TENNESSEE TITANS – Leonard Williams – DT – USC
I do not think the Titans are enamored with developing Marcus Mariota at QB. Williams might be the top talent in the draft and fills a huge need in the middle of the Titans defensive line.

3. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS – Randy Gregory-OLB- Nebraska
Jaguars are looking to upgrade on defense and Gregory is a stud.

4. OAKLAND RAIDERS – Amari Cooper-WR-Alabama
Take your choice between Cooper, White, Parker etc. but there is a clear need at the receiver position and the Raiders will have plenty to choose from. Cooper seems to be the cream of the crop.

5. WASHINGTON REDSKINS – Landon Collins – S- Alabama
Best safety in the draft fills a huge void for the Redskins.

6. NEW YORK JETS – Dante Fowler – DE/OLB – Florida
Bigtime explosive pass rusher is a welcome gift for the defensive minded new head coach Todd Bowles.

7. CHICAGO BEARS – Shane Ray – DE – Missouri
Watching the Bears play defense last season was somewhat frightening for Bears fans. Ray is a pure pass rusher who should put some pressure on opposing quarterbacks.

8. ATLANTA FALCONS – Danny Shelton -DT- Washington
Another team with a bad defense…seeing a trend down here? Danny Shelton was a monster at the senior bowl and should anchor the middle of the Falcons line for years.

9. NEW YORK GIANTS – Brandon Scherff- OT- Iowa
The Giants most important job is to keep Eli Manning upright so he is able to get the ball to Odell Beckham Jr, Victor Cruz and Ruben Randle. This load should help accomplish that goal.

10. ST LOUIS RAMS – Marcus Mariota- QB- Oregon
Rams are thrilled to see Mariota drop into their laps and will jump at the chance to replace the often injured and highly paid Sam Bradford

Could Marcus Mariota slip to the Rams at 10?

Could Marcus Mariota slip to the Rams at 10? (Via SportsChat)

11. MINNESOTA VIKINGS – Kevin White – WR- West Virginia
White ran a 4.35 at the combine. At 6’3″ with top flight speed, he can be a dynamic weapon for Teddy Bridgewater

12. CLEVELAND BROWNS – Devante Parker- WR- Louisville
Parker is another top weapon to be contended with and the Browns have major concerns at the wide receiver spot with Josh Gordon being a major question mark.

13. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS – Vic Beasley-DE-Clemson
Beasley is a prolific pass rusher who will be called upon to play OLB because of his size. Certainly the Saints will require some defense sooner or later. Had a great combine.

14. MIAMI DOLPHINS – Ereck Flowers- OT- Miami
Another massive body in front of Ryan Tannehill could be just what the doctor ordered for the Dolphins.

15. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS – Arik Armstead –DE/DT-Oregon
New coach, new ideas but there will be a big need to retool the ferocious 49ers defense and Armstead is a mountain of a man for the defensive line.

16. HOUSTON TEXANS – Andrus Peat – OT- Stanford
The Texans need to build up their offensive line and Peat is great place to start

17. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS – Eddie Goldman- DT- Florida State
With all the weapons they have on offense, the Chargers can use a little defense and this guy is a force in the middle of a four man front

18 KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – Dorial Green Beckham- WR- Missouri
Green-Beckham is just one of those guys who could not seem to find his niche in college but oozes talent. The Chiefs are a team that had no touchdowns last year from a wide receiver. Seems like a match to me.

19. CLEVELAND BROWNS – TJ Clemmings- OT- Pittsburgh
The Browns continue to build up their offense. Now if they can only figure out the quarterback situation then they can start to move the team forward.

20. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES – Trae Waynes – CB – Michigan St
Not sure how I got Waynes to drop down this far, especially after he ran a 4.30 in the combine, but the Eagles would be thrilled if he did and snatch him up quickly.

21. CINCINNATI BENGALS – Bud Dupree- DE/OLB- Kentucky
Called a physical freak of nature, this future NFL edge rusher will help the Bengals defense immensely. Ran a 4.56 in the 40 yard dash and has a 42 inch vertical leap and did a 138 inch broad jump. All while weighing in at 270 lbs. Oh My!!

22. PITTSBURGH STEELERS – Malcolm Brown- DT- Texas
A mountain for the middle of the Steeler defensive line.

23. DETROIT LIONS – LaEl Collins – OT – LSU
The Lions have a few holes on their offensive line and Collins looks like he’ll be a pretty good one. At 6’5″ and 322 lbs, he projects at left tackle.

24. ARIZONA CARDINALS – Jaelen Strong- WR- Arizona State
At 6’4″, this blazer is another stud in the crop of highly sought after receivers. A local product, the Cards are thrilled to scoop him up at 24.

25. CAROLINA PANTHERS – Marcus Peters – CB- Washington
Regarded as the number two cornerback in the entire draft, Peters is a very physical corner who fills a major need for the Panthers.

26. BALTIMORE RAVENS – Melvin Gordon-RB-Wisconsin
The Ravens are in dire need of a top flight running back and Gordon is considered the best of a strong group.

27. DALLAS COWBOYS – Maxx Williams- TE – Minnesota
The heir apparent to Jason Witten, the Cowboys are on the lookout for a young tight end that they can develop. Williams has great hands and top speed. Reminds some of a young Jeremy Shockey.

28. DENVER BRONCOS – Devin Funchess- WR- Michigan
Broncos are in salary cap dilemmas with the Thomas boys. If they franchise Demaryius Thomas, they might lose Julius Thomas. Either way they should be in the market for a pass catching tight end with speed to play receiver and Funchess certainly fits the description.

29. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – Cedric Ogbuhei- OT- Texas A & M
When you have a quarterback with the ability of an Andrew Luck, you must wisely do anything and everything to protect him. A big tackle helps and Ogbuhei oozes with potential.

30. GREEN BAY PACKERS – Denzel Perryman – ILB – Miami
The Packers just released veteran A.J.Hawk and Perryman is a highly regarded prospect who could step into that inside linebacker role.

31. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS – Kevin Johnson- CB- Wake Forest
The Legion of Boom was a little banged up by the end of the season and with Byron Maxwell slated for free agency, a young corner might be just what the doctor ordered.

32. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS – Mike Bennett – DT- Ohio State
Another big body for the defensive front should help the Patriots continue to dominate the NFL.

Other Potential 1st Round Picks

Todd Gurley- RB- Georgia
Trey Flowers – DE- Arkansas
Shaq Thompson- OLB – Washington
Eli Harold- DE- Virginia
Breshad Perriman- WR- Central Florida
Quinten Rollins – CB- Miami (Ohio)

Studs and Duds: NFL Week Ten

By Brett Malamud

I was pretty impressed in many of this week’s performances. Of course, with great success from your team comes great failure from your opponent. Here’s week ten’s edition of Studs and Duds:

Stud: Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks

Beast mode is an understatement as Lynch was phenomenal against the Giants. He had 21 carries for 140 yards and four touchdowns. His fantasy owners must have been happy as he scored 40 points this week in ESPN standard leagues.

Marshawn Lynch had a huge week against the Giants, rushing for four touchdowns (Via Getty)

Marshawn Lynch had a huge week against the Giants, rushing for four touchdowns (Via Getty)

Dud: Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals

Dalton was awful on Thursday Night Football. He completed 10-of-33 passes and finished the night with just 86 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions. He’ll try to refocus for next week’s him matchup against the Saints.

Stud: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers 

Rodgers torched the Chicago Bears on national television Sunday night. He threw six touchdowns, with all six coming in the first half. He was pulled in the third quarter.

Dud: Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers

Brown’s numbers dropped off this week. He caught eight passes for 74 yards, which isn’t really that bad. Well why is he on the duds list then? Oh, that’s right. Brown had two lost fumbles, giving him just three fantasy points for the day in ESPN standard leagues

Stud: Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

Were you expecting anything else? Manning threw five touchdown passes in the Broncos’ rout of the Oakland Raiders.

Dud: Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers

Newton, who hadn’t thrown a touchdown pass since week 7, finally threw one to kelvin Benjamin for a score. The only problem? The Panthers were so far out of reach that the game didn’t matter anymore. Newton threw three interceptions and lost a fumble in a very shaky performance in week 10. He’ll return to Carolina to face a favorable matchup with the Atlanta Falcons in week 11.

Stud: Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys

After two straight games that had Bryant with less than 35 yards receiving, Dez came alive on Sunday in London. Facing the Jacksonville Jaguars, Bryant hauled in six catches for 158 yards and two touchdowns. He’ll head into the bye week this week.

Stud: New York Jets 

Finally! The Jets took it to the red-hot Pittsburgh Steelers and came away with a 20-13 win for just their second win of the season. They’ll have a bye in week 11.


Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Studs and Duds: NFL Week Six

By Brett Malamud

There was a lot of good action out on the fields this week, including many big fantasy performances. The injury bug may have ruined some fantasy owners seasons, in addition to the players’ respective teams.  Here’s this week’s edition of Studs and Duds:

Stud: Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens

Flacco came out firing and finished the day going 21-for-29 with 306 yards and five touchdowns in route to a 48-17 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Dud: Chris Johnson and Chris Ivory, New York Jets

The running duo for Gang Green were halted this week against the Denver Broncos. The pair combined for 11 carries and just 16 yards in the Jets 31-17 loss. I’d like to take this time to call out the offensive line too. They didn’t help the cause either.

Stud: T.Y. Hilton, Indianpolis Colts

Normally, you might see Andrew Luck here in the studs list, but not this week. Instead, his receiver T.Y. Hilton takes the spot after hauling in all nine of his targets for 223 yards and a touchdown.

Dud: Mike Nugent, Cincinnati Bengals

It not fun that one play can dictate whether you end up on this list or not. That’s the case here with Mike Nugent. The kicker Nugent came into the game this week for the last play of overtime between the Bengals and Carolina Panthers. Nugent kicked a 36-yard field goal wide right as the clock expired to end the game in a tie. Teammate Adam “Pacman” Jones wasn’t afraid to call out his kicker after the game.”We were in a perfect position to win the game, two seconds left on the clock, we’ve got to win the game,” Jones said. “Everybody in here gets paid to do a job and that’s what everybody needs to do.”

Mike Nugent Looked down in frustration after missing the game winning 36-yard field goal.

Mike Nugent Looked down in frustration after missing the game winning 36-yard field goal. (Via CBS Sports)

Stud: Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers

Cam was the man this week against the Cincinnati Bengals. The quarterback finished with 284 passing yards and two touchdowns through the air. In addition, Newton had 17 rushes for 107 yards and a rushing touchdown.

Dud: Injured Wide Receivers

Victor Cruz, Calvin Johnson didn’t practice all week and missed this week’s game in Minnesota, nursing an ankle injury. Johnson was pulled just a week earlier after injuring the ankle in week five’s matchup against Buffalo. A.J. Green was taken off the practice field on a cart on Wednesday after hurting his toe. The Bengals wide receiver missed Sunday’s game against the Carolina Panthers and will also miss this week’s matchup against the Colts. The Giants lost their top wide receiver in Victor Cruz this week after he tore his patella tendon this week in the Giants’ matchup in Philadelphia on Monday night. Cruz will likely miss the remainder of the season.

Stud: Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles headed into this one fired up. They dubbed the game “the blackout” and wore their black uniforms. Philadelphia shut out the Giants 27-0.

Dud: New York Giants

Eli Manning didn’t look great, but I don’t think that it was his fault. The offensive line looked shut down this week, much like their New York counterparts, the Jets. The Giants also lost Victor Cruz for the season. They looked flat for most of the game and in the end, the G-men were shutout 27-0.

Stud: Tom Brady, New England Patriots

There were questions headed into this week about Brady’s health, but Tom Brady shut those questions down. He stepped into the AFC East matchup against the Buffalo Bills and fired four touchdowns over 361 passing yards.

Stud: Oakland Raiders

Now I know people will look at this and say, “Hey Brett, the Raiders lost,” and I know. Look at the other side of the field though. You’ll see the San Diego Chargers, a team that shutout the Jets 31-0 last week. Many including myself would argue that the Jets are a much better team than the Raiders despite their struggles. That said, the Raiders came into this one with a new coach in Tony Sparano and came within a field goal of the Chargers, ultimately surrendering a touchdown in the final two minutes of the game to lose 31-28. The winless Raiders should be proud of their effort this week, even though the outcome wasn’t in their favor.


Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

NFL Week Three Preview

By Brett Malamud

-Buccaneers (0-2) at Falcons (1-1), Thursday @ 8:25 PM EST

The Buccaneers travel one state over to the confines of the Georgia Dome. The Falcons come in after their offense was virtually shut down by Cincinnati last week. I think that coming home will heal the woes and that Matt Ryan will come back strong tonight. Verdict: Falcons

-Chargers (1-1) at Bills (2-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

I watched the Bills game last week and there wasn’t much excitement, other than the Sammy Watkins touchdown play and the C.J. Spiller kickoff return for a touchdown. I think that after taking down Seattle last week, the Chargers should roll through the Bills. Verdict: Chargers

-Cowboys (1-1) at Rams (1-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Cowboys beat the Titans last week and DeMarco Murray and Dez Bryant looked great. The Rams third-string quarterback Austin Davis went 22/29 for 235 yards and no interceptions, as St. Louis slightly edged out Tampa Bay. If Davis continues at that pace this week, it could make for a close game, but I’m still going with the Cowboys. Verdict: Cowboys

-Redskins (1-1) at Eagles (2-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Kirk Cousins is now at the helm for the Redskins and it’ll definitely be noticeable. Cousins went 22/33 and completed his first 12 passes. Not bad for a guy coming in cold off of the bench. I don’t think they’ll get past the Eagles though, after they’ve rolled as of late. The duel back combo of LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles continues to be the story and should be it again this week. Verdict: Eagles

-Texans (2-0) at Giants (0-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Giants stink. They took a loss to the Drew Stanton led Arizona Cardinals after quarterback Carson Palmer was announced as inactive for the game. The G-Men turned the ball over the ball four times, much to the disappointment of head coach Tom Coughlin. The Texans, on the other hand, won in Oakland last week. I’m gonna take the Texans here because the defense will be too strong for the Giants.  Verdict: Texans

-Vikings (1-1) at Saints (0-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Saints are 0-2. Seriously? They’re so great but have had some not so great moments. A last second field goal decided their fate last week in Cleveland. I’ve got to take them here, especially after the beat down that the Patriots gave Minnesota. Verdict: Saints

-Titans (1-1) at Bengals (2-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Titans couldn’t find a way to beat the Cowboys. Jake Locker showed some promise, throwing for 234 yards with a touchdown. The Bengals come in fresh off a win at home against the Falcons, and my belief is that they’ll stay undefeated after this week. Verdict: Bengals

-Ravens (1-1) at Browns (1-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Browns shocked the Saints last week, winning on a field goal in the final seconds. Baltimore came together after losing Ray Rice and didn’t allow a touchdown to the Steelers last week on Thursday Night Football. Still, Joe Flacco only threw for 166 yards. I think the Browns continue to shock and take this game in another close one. Verdict: Browns

-Packers (1-1) at Lions (1-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Packers were down 21-3 to the New York Jets. They came all the way back, beating the Jets 31-24. Aaron Rodgers looked pretty invisible in the first quarter and a bit of the second quarter, but powered back in the second half and finished the day off with 346 passing yards and three touchdowns. The Lions showed that Megatron was human, as Calvin Johnson could not be found in the end zone last week. Instead, the lone Lions touchdown went to Fullback Jed Collins. I think the Packers stay hot and win this one. Verdict: Packers

Calvin Johnson looks to get back in the end zone this week vs. the Packers (Via Getty)

Calvin Johnson looks to get back in the end zone this week vs. the Packers (Via Getty)

-Colts (0-2) at Jaguars (0-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Colts lost…to the Eagles. And I say it that way because the Eagles looked fantastic. But the Colts looked good too. They were edged out at the last second and so the loss might sting a bit, but I know they’ll come back strong this week against the Jaguars, who were slaughtered by Washington last week. Verdict: Colts

-Raiders (0-2) at Patriots (1-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

There shouldn’t be much debate here. The Patriots woke up last week, and beat down the Vikings by a score of 30-7. They’ll take on the Raiders in what could be an ugly result. Verdict: Patriots

-49ers (1-1) at Cardinals (2-0), Sunday @ 4:05 PM EST

I have been and am still pushing hard on this Cardinals defense. I’ve said it all along, I really like their defense. They forced four Giants turnovers last week at MetLife Stadium. This will be their toughest test yet, as they take on the 49ers. The Niners, however, didn’t look right at home in the second half of the inaugural game of their new stadium. Instead, quarterback Colin Kaepernick forced passes throughout and the Bears rallied to beat them. I think that the woes will stop and that Kaepernick will lead his team to the victory. Verdict: 49ers

-Broncos (2-0) at Seahawks (1-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

This is my matchup of the week. A rematch of last season’s Super Bowl sees the Broncos headed to Seattle to face the Seahawks. The Seahawks took a loss last week to the Chargers. Marshawn Lynch was not much of a factor, only rushing for 36 yards. Wes Welker is back this week after the NFL and NFLPA agreed on a new drug policy, freeing him from the remaining four games on his previous suspension. I think that the attention on Welker should free up Demaryius Thomas and Julius Thomas.  I like the Broncos this week to quiet the 12th man. Verdict: Broncos

-Chiefs (0-2) at Dolphins (1-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

The Chiefs almost took down Peyton Manning and the rest of the Denver Broncos last week, but they didn’t. Instead they dropped to 0-2 and their defense has allowed 50 points through only two games. On the other side of the field will be the Miami Dolphins, who shocked everyone back in week one, when they took down the New England Patriots. Last week was a different story and they couldn’t get anything going, taking the loss to the Buffalo Bills. The Chiefs are desperate for a win in the competitive AFC West, and I think they’ll get their first of the year here. Verdict: Chiefs

-Steelers (1-1) at Panthers (2-0), Sunday @ 8:30 PM EST

The return of Cam Newton brought a great performance by the Carolina Panthers offense. Newton was 22/34 for 281 yards and a touchdown as he defeated “Donkey Kong Suh and [his] fellow Auburn teammate Nick Fairley.” The Panthers look ahead now to this week’s matchup at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football. Simply put, the Steelers couldn’t score a touchdown last week on Thursday Night Football. This week they’ll play their second game in a row in a primetime slot. I think that they’ll lose this one as well, and the nation will see the flaws of this struggling team. Verdict: Panthers

-Bears (1-1) at Jets (1-1), Monday @ 8:30 PM EST

Ah, the Jets. Many of you know how much I love the Jets, and how I continue to root for them, even in the darkest of times. Well, last week was one of those times. The Jets went up 14-0 within the first seven minutes of the game. Then, the Jets were up 21-3 in the middle of the second quarter when things started to unfold. Capped off by an 80 yard laser to Jordy Nelson for a touchdown, the Jets collapsed and lost 31-24. As far as bright spots, there were not many. Eric Decker looked good, but how long until defenses double team him on every play? Chris Johnson played an awful game, and finished the day with 21 yards on 12 carries. Instead, the running back who looked the best was Chris Ivory, who had just 43 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. I’m not sure they’ll bounce back this week though, facing the Chicago Bears. The Bears had three fourth-quarter touchdowns to take down the 49ers. I don’t think that the Jets secondary can handle Brandon Marshall, who scored three touchdowns last week. Jay Cutler is 8-4 on Monday Night Football with 20 touchdowns in only 12 games. The trend of touchdowns for him should continue this week, and you can bet that Jets head coach Rex Ryan will be upset with that. Verdict: Bears

NFL Week 2 Preview

By Brett Malamud

Week one proved to be a great week of football that was full of crazy catches and games coming down to the wire. Let’s hope week two can bring the same level of excitement. Here’s my picks for this week:

-Steelers (1-0) at Ravens (0-1), Thursday @ 8:25 PM EST

The Steelers escaped a major comeback at the hands of the Cleveland Browns. Now they’ll face their rivals, the Baltimore Ravens, who were narrowly defeated at home against the Bengals, under the bright lights of M&T Bank Stadium in primetime. Crowd noise will be a factor, but I’ll take the Steelers here in a close one. Verdict: Steelers

-Dolphins (1-0) at Bills (1-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Pretty even matchup here as these AFC East foes duke it out. The Dolphins are coming in red hot after defeating the almighty New England Patriots. Buffalo is also coming in with some momentum as well, after shocking the Chicago Bears in overtime. The addition of Knowshon Moreno has proven to be great for Miami thus far, especially after he ran for 134 yards on 24 attempts with a touchdown. I’m going to take the Dolphins here. Verdict: Dolphins

-Jaguars (0-1) at Redskins (0-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

I’m going to be brutally honest, I will not tune in to this one. After watching the Texans dispose of the Redskins offense last week, I can regretfully say that I am not interested in the team, with the exception of Alfred Morris, DeSean Jackson, and Jordan Reed (who has been a major disappointment to my fantasy team), as they are amongst the players on my three fantasy football teams (thankfully, each is on a different team). I’m taking the Jaguars, who took a 17-0 lead into halftime last week against the Eagles. Verdict: Jaguars

-Cowboys (0-1) at Titans (1-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Now we come to the Cowboys, who were manhandled last week when they faced the San Francisco 49ers, and at one point were down 28-3. The game included two fumbles from the Cowboys offense, one of which was taken all the way back by the 49ers defense for a touchdown. The Titans had a great showing out of quarterback Jake Locker, who threw for 266 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. I’m going with the safe bet of picking the Titans to win this one. Verdict: Titans

-Cardinals (1-0) at Giants (0-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Both of these teams played in the Monday Night Football doubleheader in week one and each of those games was a polar opposite of the other. The Cardinals rallied late, scoring two touchdowns in the final quarter. Carson Palmer looked phenomenal, and his night was highlighted by a 63 yard bomb to Michael Floyd, who also had an impact on the game (although he didn’t score a touchdown). The other game was rather one-sided and the Giants were done from the opening whistle. Eli Manning was intercepted twice and there wasn’t much room for Rashad Jennings to run. The Giants should struggle this week against a tough defense. Verdict: Cardinals

-Patriots (0-1) at Vikings (1-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Patriots were shocked last week, taking a tough loss to the Miami Dolphins. They’ll travel to Minnesota to face the Vikings, who had an excellent game last week by shutting down the Rams in St. Louis. My gut tells me that the Patriots will come back strong and win the game. Verdict: Patriots

-Saints (0-1) at Browns (0-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Saints lost a heartbreaker in Atlanta after fumbling the football in overtime. Drew Brees tried out his new toy in Brandin Cooks and liked what he saw. Cooks has one less catch than Jimmy Graham, hauling in seven receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown. The Browns rallied against the Steelers from a 24-point deficit but ultimately lost on a field goal as time expired. The Browns may give the Saints a run for their money at the beginning of this game, but I think the Saints pull away in the second half. Verdict: Saints

-Falcons (1-0) at Bengals (1-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

On the other end of the Saints’ heartbreaking loss was the Atlanta Falcons. Didn’t Matty Ice look great? I mean, seriously! 448 yards. FOUR HUNDRED AND FOURTY EIGHT YARDS! A Falcons franchise record for him with that, and he even threw three touchdowns. I do like the Falcons’ addition of Devin Hester, who was targeted six times and caught five of those for 99 yards. The Bengals blew a 15 point lead but scored a touchdown with just over five minutes left against the Ravens. I don’t see it shaping up that way this week, because instead I see the Falcons going up early and not looking back. Verdict: Falcons

Matt Ryan ran through the Saints defense last week and hopes to do the same this week vs. the Bengals (Via AP)

Matt Ryan ran through the Saints defense last week and hopes to do the same this week vs. the Bengals (Via AP)

-Lions (1-0) at Panthers (1-0), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Lions looked fantastic last week, but after all, they were playing the Giants, who blew coverage after coverage. It seems that nobody could stop Calvin Johnson, who made the most ridiculous catches. The Panthers will get Cam Newton back but I don’t see much changing. The Lions are just too good right now. Verdict: Lions

-Rams (0-1) at Buccaneers (0-1), Sunday @ 4:05 PM EST

Another boring matchup on the week two slate sees the Sam Bradford-less, touchdown-less St. Louis Rams, squaring off with the team that had the worst ranked defense in the NFL last season. The Rams might have lost their backup as well, with Shaun Hill going down last week with a strained quad. Doug Martin did nothing last week, piling up a whopping nine yards on nine carries. I’m pulling for them this week though, and this could be the week that Doug Martin comes back to form. Verdict: Buccaneers

-Seahawks (1-0) at Chargers (0-1), Sunday @ 4:05 PM EST

This seems to be one of the more intriguing battles this week. The Chargers took a loss, but looked good against the Arizona Cardinals. The Seahawks also looked good in their game, taking down the Packers. I’m going to take the Seahawks here, but I’m sure that San Diego will compete throughout. Verdict: Seahawks

-Texans (1-0) at Raiders (0-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

The Texans defense is electric. They were great against the Redskins. The Raiders were not, and took a loss to the Jets. I see the Texans defense as too much of a threat to the Oakland offense. Verdict: Texans

-Jets (1-0) at Packers (0-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

This could be a really close game, but it could also turn ugly and end up as a blowout for Green Bay. The Packers look to bounce back against the Jets after being defeated by the Seahawks last Thursday. The Jets have assembled a bit of a new offense, with Chris Johnson and Chris Ivory as duel threats in the backfield. Johnson caught five passes and one touchdown out of the backfield in addition to his 68 rushing yards. Eric Decker also played nicely, racking up 74 yards on five receptions. Ultimately, I see the Packers taking this one, but not by much. Verdict: Packers

-Chiefs (0-1) at Broncos (1-0), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

The Chiefs weren’t themselves on defense last week. They were picked apart by Jake Locker and allowed him to drive down the field, resulting in two touchdowns. This week they’ll face an even tougher task: Peyton Manning. The 38 year old took down his former team, the Indianapolis Colts, in a showdown with Andrew Luck. Peyton found Julius Thomas in the end zone three times and utilized the acquisition of Emmanuel Sanders. The Chiefs are no match for the top team in the AFC. Verdict: Broncos

-Bears (0-1) at 49ers (1-0), Sunday @ 8:30 PM EST

The Niners dominated the Cowboys throughout. Rookie Carlos Hyde scored a touchdown and Vernon Davis caught two. The Bears lost that shocker to the Buffalo Bills last week and I’m not sure their defense can keep up with the Niners’ fast west coast offense in the inaugural game for Levi’s Stadium. Verdict: 49ers

-Eagles (1-0) at Colts (0-1), Monday @ 8:30 PM EST

Interesting matchup here as the Eagles face the Colts on Monday Night Football. Andrew Luck threw for 370 yards against the Broncos. Darren Sproles and LeSean McCoy are a deadly combo for Philadelphia. Should be a great offensive duel but I’m taking the Colts at home. Verdict: Colts


 

Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

2014 NFL DRAFT

The NFL Draft starts at 8:00 PM EST tonight. You can follow the draft coverage here

Pick Team Player Position College
1 Houston Texans Jadeveon Clowney DE South Carolina
2 St. Louis Rams (From WSH) Greg Robinson OT Auburn
3 Jacksonville Jaguars Blake Bortles QB Central Florida
4 Buffalo Bills (From CLE) Sammy Watkins WR Clemson
5 Oakland Raiders Khalil Mack OLB Buffalo
6 Atlanta Falcons Jake Matthews OT Texas A&M
7 Tampa Bay Buccanners Mike Evans WR Texas A&M
8 Cleveland Browns (From MIN) Justin Gilbert CB Oklahoma State
9 Minnesota Vikings (From CLE) (Via BUF) Anthony Barr OLB UCLA
10 Detroit Lions Eric Ebron TE UNC
11 Tennessee Titans Taylor Lewan OT Michigan
12 New York Giants Odell Beckham Jr. WR LSU
13 St. Louis Rams Aaron Donald DT Pittsburgh
14 Chicago Bears Kyle Fuller CB VA. Tech
15 Pittsburgh Steelers Ryan Shazier LB Ohio State
16 Dallas Cowboys Zack Martin OT Notre Dame
17 Baltimore Ravens CJ Mosley LB Alabama
18 New York Jets Calvin Pryor S Louisville
19 Miami Dolphins Ja’wuan James OT Tennessee
20 New Orleans Saints (From ARI) Brandin Cooks WR  Oregon State
21 Green Bay Packers Ha-Ha Clinton Dix S Alabama
22 Cleveland Browns (From PHI) Johnny Manziel QB Texas A&M
23 Kansas City Chiefs Dee Ford DE Auburn
24 Cincinnati Bengals Darqueze Dennard CB Michigan State
25 San Diego Chargers Jason Verrett CB TCU
26 Philadelphia Eagles (Via CLE) (From IND) Marcus Smith DE Louisville
27 Arizona Cardinals (From NO) Deone Bucannon S Washington St.
28 Carolina Panthers Kelvin Benjamin WR FSU
29 New England Patriots Dominique Easley DT Florida
30 San Francisco 49ers Jimmie Ward S Northern Illinois
31 Denver Broncos Brandon Roby CB Ohio State
32 Minnesota Vikings (Via SEA) Teddy Bridgewater QB Louisville

 

Draft Day Trades:

  • Bills acquire No. 4 Pick (Sammy Watkins) from Browns for No. 9 pick (Anthony Barr), plus 2015 1st & 4th round picks
  • Browns acquire 8th pick (Justin Gilbert) from Minnesota for 9th pick (Anthony Barr)
  • The Cardinals traded No. 20 (Brandin Cooks) to New Orleans for No. 27 (Deone Bucannon) and their third-rounder, Pick No. 91.
  • The Browns traded Pick No. 26 (Marcus Smith), and their third-rounder, Pick No. 83, to move up to No. 22 (Johnny Manziel)
  • Vikings acquire the 32th pick (Teddy Bridgewater) for the 40th pick and 108th pick
Amid all of the hype for other players this season, expect Clowney's name to be called first at the NFL Draft (Via Jeff Blake/US Presswire)

Amid all of the hype for other players this season, expect Clowney’s name to be called first at the NFL Draft (Via Jeff Blake/US Presswire)

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Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

 

Vikings Hire Zimmer

By Nick Vespasiano

Mike Zimmer was hired on Wednesday to be the ninth head coach of the Minnesota Vikings. The first time head coach was the Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator since 2008 after holding the same position with the Atlanta Falcons and Dallas Cowboys. The hire came just over two weeks after Leslie Frazier was let go by the team.

Personality wise, Zimmer’s blunt honesty sharply contrasts Leslie Frazier’s passivity. When addressing the media, Leslie was often painfully vague or sounded like he was just repeating what general manager Rick Spielman wanted him to say. Vikings management was not willing to give up on Christian Ponder despite his lack of talent and Leslie stood by as we lost game after game. Zimmer is not that kind of coach. He will not be Spielman’s “yes man” like Frazier was for three seasons. Had he been head coach of the Vikings during the Christian Ponder era, Zimmer would have put up more of a fight when Spielman insisted Ponder be the starter.

One thing Zimmer and the former Vikings head coach have in common is they are defensive minds. Excluding a dismal 2010 season, in his six years in Cincinnati, the Bengals yards, touchdowns, and points allowed per drive and sack totals trended from the bottom half of the league to the top ten. Last season the Vikings ranked 31st in yards allowed and last in points allowed. Zimmer’s defenses in Cincinnati featured very few Pro-Bowlers, but the Vikings hope he can improve their defense that lacks top talent.

Mike Zimmer will take over as the ninth head coach in Vikings history (Via The Enquirer/Jeff Swinger)

Mike Zimmer will take over as the ninth head coach in Vikings history (Via The Enquirer/Jeff Swinger)

Zimmer has proven he can revamp a defense but the Vikings have issues offensively as well. This new coaching staff will have to find a quarterback that can consistently give the team a chance to win. If that doesn’t happen, the team likely won’t win many games and Zimmer will be fired in a few years just like Leslie Frazier. The Vikings’ offensive success will depend on not only on acquiring a quarterback either in free agency or the draft but also on hiring the right assistant coaches. While the draft is not until April, assistant coaches are being hired right now. The Vikings hired Norv Turner yesterday to replace Bill Musgrave as offensive coordinator. As the Cleveland Browns’ offensive coordinator last season, his offense had the 11th ranked passing game in the league despite an offensive depth chart worse than the Vikings’. While the offense will run through Adrian Peterson, Turner can help utilize weapons like Cordarrelle Patterson and Greg Jennings.

There are still many unknowns. There are still open assistant coach positions, free agency, and the upcoming draft. The roster and coaching staff are still incomplete but the Vikings seem to be moving in the right direction.

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Nick Vespasiano is a senior English major at St. Olaf College and aspiring sports writer. He was raised in Minnesota, favorite teams are the Vikings, Wild, and Twins. Favorite athletes are Randy Moss and Jaromír Jágr.