Tag Archive | Vikings

Take It To The Bank: NFL Week Nine

By Brett Malamud

Digg for gold

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs has scored 43 fantasy points over the last three weeks, making him one of the most intriguing names on the fantasy football waiver wire. He’ll take on a St. Louis Rams defense that has a tough secondary. I’m not sure that this will be a huge outing, but Diggs should still be considered as a flex play.

Big Ben’s Back

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger returned from a sprained MCL injury last weekend, completed 28-of-45 passes for 262 yards, with one touchdown and three interceptions Sunday against the Bengals.. Not such great numbers. I think that this week, Big Ben returns to his old self, and has a big day against an Oakland Raiders defense that has allowed the most passing yards in the league. Look for wide receiver Antonio Brown to have a huge day as well.

Same Face, New Place

Headlines were made this week as the Denver Broncos traded two sixth round picks this week to acquire two time pro bowler, tight end Vernon Davis. This had me intrigued for the main reason that quarterback Peyton Manning loves his tight ends. Let’s take a look back. Julius Thomas had 24 touchdowns from Manning in his final two seasons as a Bronco. I think that can be Davis this season, and am highly attracted by the potential that this trade has. He does have two other tight ends on the roster to compete with (Owen Daniels and Virgil Green), but there’s a reason why Denver traded for him. I say take a number and stash Davis on your bench this week.

The time to pick up Vernon Davis is now (Via Fox)

The time to pick up Vernon Davis is now (Via Fox)

Waiver Wire Pickups

Last week we saw many players go down with major injuries, crippling fantasy teams everywhere. Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell tore his MCL and PCL, and he is done for the season. DeAngelo Williams is going to replace him, and if you were lucky enough to snag him on the waiver wire, he should be in your lineup right away. Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte suffered damage to his MCL and will be out for a few weeks. Enter Jeremy Langford. I expect him to have a big week against the Chargers on Monday Night Football.

Your Bold Prediction

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski takes on the Washington Redskins this week, who have allowed the 12th fewest yards per game to tight ends. Of course, they’ve yet to face Gronkowski and I’m predicting three touchdowns today from Gronk.


Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric 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

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NFL Week 11 Predictions

By Brett Malamud

This week has a lot of great matchups, especially in the later games. Here’s my week 11 predictions:

BYES: Ravens, Cowboys, Jaguars, Jets
-Bills 09 (5-4) at Dolphins 22 (5-4), FINAL on Thursday

The Dolphins took a big win that propelled them into second place in the AFC East.

-Vikings (4-5) at Bears (3-6), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Bears defense can make or break this game. I think that the Vikings will come out strong and take the victory. Verdict: Vikings

-Texans (4-5) at Browns (6-3), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Good matchup here as the Texans head into Cleveland. The Browns are riding a three game winning streak and show no signs of stopping here. I think they’ll take this one in a  close game. Verdict: Browns

-Falcons (3-6) at Panthers (3-6-1), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Panthers have not been able to get it together. Cam Newton has thrown one touchdown pass since week seven. I think that he’ll edge out Atlanta here though Verdict: Falcons

-Bengals (5-3-1) at Saints (4-5), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

I’m taking New Orleans, no question. I think that this one could turn ugly if Drew Brees is himself. Verdict: Saints

-Buccaneers (1-8) at Redskins (3-6), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Bucs enter week 11 with the 29th ranked offense and defense. They will probably lose this one on the road. Verdict: Redskins

-Broncos (7-2) at Rams (3-6), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Broncos should win this one easily. Look for Peyton Manning to have another great game. Verdict: Broncos

-49ers (5-4) at Giants (3-6), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Giants have won their last two matchups with the 49ers, the first of the two coming in the NFC Championship game a few years ago. However, I’m going to go with the 49ers on the road. I think that the Giants will make it a good game though and will stay close throughout. Verdict: 49ers

-Seahawks (6-3) at Chiefs (6-3), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

This game will be a battle of defenses. I think Russell Wilson takes over and that Marshawn Lynch runs in a pair of touchdowns.  Verdict: Seahawks

-Raiders (0-9) at Chargers (5-4), Sunday @ 4:05 PM EST

I expect the winless Raiders to stay winless this week. I just can’t see them taking down San Diego on the road. Verdict: Chargers

-Lions (7-2) at Cardinals (8-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

Another fantastic matchup here puts Calvin Johnson and the Lions against the Cardinals secondary. I think that Megatron wins here and has a huge game. Don’t doubt Larry Fitzgerald. Even with the Carson Palmer injury, Fitzgerald could have a good game. Verdict: Lions

-Eagles (7-2) at Packers (6-3), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

Rodgers takes on…Sanchez? A big game here sees one of the league’s top QB’s taking on the former butt-fumbler. Sanchez was good last week though. I just cannot see how he pulls one out in Lambeau though. Verdict: Packers

Mark Sanchez hopes to continue the Eagles winning ways this week in Green Bay (Via USA Today)

Mark Sanchez hopes to continue the Eagles winning ways this week in Green Bay (Via USA Today)

-Patriots (7-2) at Colts (6-3), Sunday @ 8:30 PM EST

Luck vs Brady. Now there’s a good matchup. The two QB’s will duel on national television in Lucas Oil Stadium. The Colts have the top ranked offense at the moment. I see that trend continuing this week as they take down the mighty Patriots. Verdict: Colts

-Steelers (6-4) at Titans (2-7), Monday @ 8:30 PM EST

A strange Monday Night Football matchup sees the Steelers’ 4th ranked offense going head to head with the Titans’ 31st ranked offense. This game shouldn’t be close as long as Big Ben keeps his composure. I’m taking Pittsburgh. Verdict: Steelers


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 Seven Predictions

By Brett Malamud

This week has Peyton Manning on the precipice of NFL history. Manning needs just two touchdowns to tie Brett Favre for the all time touchdowns record. Here’s what else is on tap for week seven:

BYES: Philadelphia Eagles, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 

-Jets (1-5) at Patriots (4-2), Thursday @ 8:25 PM EST

The Jets come into this matchup off their loss to Peyton Manning and the Broncos. They showed signs of promise, and kept with Denver for most of the game. This week they’ll face another hall of fame quarterback in Tom Brady. Brady was excellent last week against the Bills and hopes to continue his success. I believe that the game will be close throughout, but I’m taking New England. Verdict: Patriots

-Falcons (2-4) at Ravens (4-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Falcons lost to the Bears last week in a game that was close through three quarters before Chicago pulled away. They’ll face the Ravens, who return home after their biggest win this season. Joe Flacco finished his day with five touchdown passes in route to a 48-17 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. I’m going to pick the Ravens to stay hot. Verdict: Ravens

-Titans (2-4) at Redskins (1-5), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Titans barely edged out the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, in a performance that Tennessee should not be proud of. They allowed 336 passing yards to Jaguars rookie quarterback Blake Bortles. This week they’ll have a tougher matchup against Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins who threw for 354 yards against a tough Arizona Cardinals defense. The task will be tough, and I think it’ll be too difficult for the Titans to stop Cousins. Verdict: Redskins

-Seahawks (3-2) at Rams (1-4), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Seahawks were shocked last week by the Dallas Cowboys. Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson was held to just 126 yards on the day. The Rams also were defeated last week, taking a Monday night loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Look for Rams rookie quarterback Austin Davis to show some promise against a deadly Seahawks defense, and ultimately win. The Rams will continue powering through their rough schedule. Verdict: Rams

-Browns (3-2) at Jaguars (0-6), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

I picked the Browns to win last week and they did against the Pittsburgh Steelers. They’re going to win this one too, especially against the winless Jaguars. Verdict: Browns

-Bengals (3-1-1) at Colts (4-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Last week’s Bengals-Panthers game ended with Mike Nugent kicking a 36-yard field goal wide right as the clock expired to end the game in a tie. The Bengals now look to regroup as they head into Indianapolis. They’ll try to stop a red-hot Colts team, led by quarterback Andrew Luck and wide receiver T.Y. Hilton. The Colts come off of a win in Houston on Thursday Night Football. They’ll take this one, especially at the rate they’ve been playing at. Verdict: Colts

-Vikings (2-4) at Bills (3-3)Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Bills couldn’t handle Tom Brady and the Patriots last week, and that sent them to an even 3-3 on the season. Bills quarterback Kyle Orton did look good though and hopes to continue that this week. He’ll match up against Vikings rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater couldn’t find the endzone last week against the Detroit Lions. I think that will change, but the Bills will run away with this one. Verdict: Bills

-Dolphins (2-3) at Bears (3-3), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

Jay Cutler impressed last week, torching the Atlanta Falcons for 381 passing yards in route to a 27-13 victory. This week, the Bears turn their attention to the Miami Dolphins, who come off of a closely contested game with the Green Bay Packers. This game will be very close, but I’m going with Chicago here. Verdict: Bears

-Saints (2-3) at Lions (4-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Saints head off of their bye week into Detroit, where they’ll take on the Lions. Injuries will have an impact in this one, as the Saints will likely be without tight end Jimmy Graham, and the status of Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson is up in the air as well. The one achilles heel of the Lions could be their running game, currently ranked 29th in the league. With that said, look for wide receiver Golden Tate to step into the spotlight and lead the Lions to a close victory. Verdict: Lions

-Panthers (3-2-1) at Packers (4-2), Sunday @ 1:00 PM EST

The Panthers escaped last week’s game with a tie after the Bengals kicker Mike Nugent missed a 36-yard attempt as time expired in overtime. Carolina quarterback Cam Newton had 284 passing yards and two touchdowns through the air, in addition to his 107 yards and a touchdown on the ground. The Panthers will take on the Packers at Lambeau Field this week. The Packers beat the Dolphins this week and look to continue their win streak. I believe that they will. Verdict: Packers

-Chiefs (2-3) at Chargers (5-1), Sunday @ 4:05 PM EST

The Chiefs come in off of the bye week after being defeated in San Francisco the week before. The Chargers on the other hand squeaked out a victory against the Oakland Raiders. Quarterback Philip Rivers threw for 313 yards and three touchdowns. San Diego has the third ranked defense and will have to stop the Chiefs’ run game. I think they will, and will charge past the chiefs this weekend Verdict: Chargers

-Cardinals (4-1) at Raiders (0-5), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

I’d be shocked to see Oakland come away with a victory in this one. The Cardinals took down the Redskins last week, and the Raiders took a loss to the Chargers. Look for the Cardinals to keep the Raiders winless. Verdict: Chargers

-Giants (3-3) at Cowboys (5-1), Sunday @ 4:25 PM EST

A battle is brewing in the NFC East. The Eagles and Cowboys are currently tied for first place at 3-1 and lurking behind them is the Giants at 3-3. The Giants are sure to miss wide receiver Victor Cruz after he tore his patella tendon, ruling him out for the rest of the season. Odell Beckham Jr. and Ruben Randle will have to step up, knowing that they’ll have to get open quick due to the bad offensive line that the Giants have. I’m going to have to go with the Cowboys simply because of their offense, that took down the mighty Seattle Seahawks last weekend. Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo and running back DeMarco Murray should have a big day. Verdict: Cowboys

-49ers (4-2) at Broncos (4-1), Sunday @ 8:30 PM EST

My game of the week is right here, with the 49ers traveling into the Mile High City. The Broncos are fresh off of their win against the Jets last week. Peyton Manning is two touchdown passes away from tying Brett Favre for the all time touchdowns record. He’ll most likely tie the record on Sunday. The 49ers took down the Rams last week, but will probably take a loss to Peyton and the Broncos here. Verdict: Broncos

Peyton Manning will go for the NFL all time touchdowns record this week (Via CBS Sports)

Peyton Manning will go for the NFL all time touchdowns record this week (Via CBS Sports)

-Texans (3-3) at Steelers (3-3), Monday @ 8:30 PM EST

The Texans took a loss at home on Thursday Night Football to send them to an even 3-3 record. The Steelers took a loss to the Cleveland Browns. With both teams looking to bounce back, expect a good game here. I’m going with the Steelers, who head into this week with the sixth ranked offense in the league. Verdict: Steelers

Studs and Duds: NFL Week Four

By Brett Malamud

Week four was full of blowouts, and it was pretty easy to point out the studs and duds of the week. The week began on Thursday night with a 45-14 Giants blowout in Washington, and ended with a 41-14 Patriots blunder in Kansas City on Monday night. It was quite the shock for many, and even though it feels like the season just started, the week could play a big role in the end of season standings for certain teams. Here’s week four’s edition of Studs and Duds:

Stud: Eli Manning, New York Giants

Eli Manning…a stud? In a shocking twist of fate, Manning finished the week leading the entire league in fantasy points with 32 (in ESPN standard leagues). Talk about a comeback. Eli threw for 300 yards and four touchdowns in what was nothing short of a blowout in Washington.

Eli's Back! The Giants quarterback dismantled the Redskins defense this week. (Via NYDN)

Eli’s Back! The Giants quarterback dismantled the Redskins defense this week. (Via NYDN)

Dud: Tom Brady, New England Patriots

Tom Brady…a dud? Yes, Tom Terrific wasn’t so terrific on Monday night in Kansas City. The future hall of famer fumbled twice and threw two interceptions. Brady also was limited to one touchdown pass on the day. Brady will not be able to produce anything positive if he’s stuck behind an offensive line that cannot protect him. He was replaced by Jimmy Garoppolo in the fourth quarter in the midst of a slaughtering.

Stud: Andrew Luck, Indianpolis Colts

This is the second straight week that Luck made the studs list, and for good reason. Luck threw for 393 yards and four touchdowns in a 41-17 crushing blow to the Tennessee Titans. Looking ahead, Luck will face the Baltimore Ravens, a team that ranks 24th against the pass, in Indianapolis.

Dud: Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins

This is proof that you can move from stud to dud in one week. Kirk Cousins did just that, after coming out flat against the Giants. Cousins threw four interceptions and lost a fumble. Looking ahead, Cousins could stay on the duds list for another week, as the Seattle Seahawks travel to Washington for a week five matchup.

Stud: Steve Smith Sr., Baltimore Ravens

Smith faced his former team, the Carolina Panthers, in Baltimore this week. A 61 yard capped off a day to remember for Smith. He finished the game with 139 yards and two touchdowns on seven receptions. Smith continues to produce for his new team, and leads Ravens receivers in all major categories.

Dud: LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles

For the man they call Shady, it was a very disappointing week. The 49ers were ranked seventh against the run headed into this game, and proved that ranking to be true this week. While Darren Sproles only had one carry for four yards, I felt that as a backup, it wouldn’t have been fair to be classify him as a “dud.” Instead I point at McCoy, who ran for just 17 yards on 10 carries. With that, McCoy has ran for just 39 yards on 29 carries in his last two games. I’d tip him about $0.20 for that performance.

Stud: Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs abused Tom Brady this week, and forced a fumble and two interceptions, one of which was returned by FS Husain Abdullah for a touchdown. The entire team was happy to have the return of Jamaal Charles, who scored three total touchdowns in the game. Looking ahead, the Chiefs now will look to pair Charles with Knile Davis, who took over the starting job while Charles was out of the lineup with injury, to create a one-two punch that many teams have this season in the backfield. They’ll travel into San Francisco next week before heading into their bye week.

Dud: Oakland Raiders

The Oakland Raiders have a lot of work to do. The men in silver and black traveled to the beautiful Wembley Stadium in London, England, hoping for a last gasp of air before they head into their bye week. Unfortunately, they failed to get much of anything going. Rookie and starting quarterback Derek Carr suffered a high ankle sprain and sprained MCL and had to be replaced by third-string quarterback Matt McGloin. Why the third-string quarterback, you ask? Backup quarterback Matt Schaub didn’t travel to England with the team after his wife underwent an emergency c-section a week ago to deliver their baby several months prematurely. The team decided that it was best for him to stay home, rather than travel to London. That didn’t help the quarterback troubles. The day can be best highlighted by a shotgun formation snap in the third quarter that went about a foot to the left of Carr, landed behind him, and was scooped up by Dolphins CB Cortland Finnegan, who brought it back 50 yards for a touchdown. The game ended in a in a 38-14 Dolphins victory that sent the winless Raiders to 0-4 on the season. The bad news continued, as the Raiders announced Monday night that head coach Dennis Allen was fired. Allen was 8-28 as Oakland’s coach. An announcement on the interim coach is expected today. Many believe that offensive line coach Tony Sparano will be given the job, after he recently was the head coach of the Miami Dolphins from 2008-11, and has the most coaching experience of the likely candidates. We’ll see what ultimately happens but it’s a relief that the coach will have two weeks to prepare themselves with the bye week coming up.

Stud: Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings

The rookie quarterback entered the day with high expectations and finished the day with no regrets. Bridgewater was excellent in the first start of his career, taking over for the injured Matt Cassel. The second round pick out of Louisville threw for 317 yards and rushed five times for 27 yards and a touchdown. He was carted off of the field with a sprained ankle but Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer remains completely optimistic that Bridgewater will start Thursday against the Green Bay Packers.

Stud: Terrance Williams, Dallas Cowboys

Tony Romo attempted just 29 passes in a run-heavy game for the Cowboys. But Williams made the most of his opportunities. The second year wide receiver was targeted a team high seven times, and he hauled in six of those for 77 yards and two touchdowns. As teams focus on stopping the Cowboys run game, Tony Romo will be given the option to pass. The man with the spotlight on him is Dez Bryant and with that, Williams should be able to produce a lot of strong stats moving forward.


 

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.

Broadway Johnny?

By Brett Malamud

Finally the time has come and the wait is over. After making his mark in the NCAA, Johnny Manziel has declared himself eligible for this year’s NFL draft. The Heisman winner is a projected top-ten pick with many even placing him in the top-five. While Manziel is a scrambling quarterback, he averaged 317 passing yards per game for a total of 4117 yards. This is 408 yards more than he threw for last season, a season in which he won the Heisman Trophy. In improving his passing game, Manziel had to take a step back in tucking the football and running. He rushed for only 53% of what he had rushed in 2012. However in the end, the touchdown totals remain to be consistent. Manziel finished with 47 touchdowns in 2012 and 46 touchdowns in 2013. Not too shabby when you consider the fact that Manziel threw for more yards than Andrew Luck did in any of his seasons at Stanford.

Manziel does have his problems though. He has been in the news for his behavioral issues. He was arrested back in 2012 for getting in a late night fight and possessing a fake ID. The issues continued even after he won the Heisman Trophy. He overslept while attending the Manning Passing Academy. He was kicked out of a University of Texas fraternity party. He also voiced his displeasure with Texas A&M by tweeting that he “can’t wait to leave College Station” after he received a parking ticket. His taunting on the field became quite the story during the 2013 season, and was regularly featured on ESPN. But the most notable issue came in early August 2013. The NCAA began investigating whether Manziel accepted payments from autographs that he had signed in January 2013. While it is widely believed that he did accept the money, the NCAA could not find any evidence and suspended him for only the first half of the season opener against Rice.

Johnny Manziel will enter the 2014 NFL draft as one of the top quarterbacks available (via Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Johnny Manziel will enter the 2014 NFL draft as one of the top quarterbacks available (via Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Right now if you look at the NFL draft order, Houston has the first pick. The Texans need a quarterback and are expected to draft Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater. The St. Louis Rams have the second pick and while it seems that they might need a quarterback, they have showed no indication that they want to dump Sam Bradford. The third and fourth picks belong to the Jacksonville Jaguars and Cleveland Browns respectfully. Both teams need a quarterback. The Oakland Raiders sit in the five spot and the Vikings sit at the eight spot. It’s possible that they could each want to draft a QB as well. UCF quarterback Blake Bortles is on the board as well but it’ll be interesting to see which QB gets drafted first.

An interesting pick for Manziel though could be the New York Jets. The Jets currently hold the 18th pick. Now I’m not saying that Manziel is going to slip to the 18th pick. We did see Brady Quinn slip to the 22nd pick back in 2007, after being projected to go in the top ten. Manziel is not likely to slip based on the amount of teams needing quarterbacks. Therefore, only way the Jets can get Manziel will be by trading up picks to draft him. I think that a run at Manziel could be what the Jets need. Now I know some people look and they’ll say, “why would they do that?” Well, they’ve done it before. Back in 2009, the Jets traded up to the fifth pick to select USC quarterback Mark Sanchez. Now I know that didn’t turn out to be such a great decision now that Sanchez has lost the starting position, but Manziel is a bigger threat than Sanchez ever was. The Jets current starting quarterback, Geno Smith, had the lowest QB rating in the entire league. General Manager John Idzik stated at the end of their week 17 game that they will “look at quarterbacks” in the offseason. It is this statement that shows that Idzik doesn’t believe that Smith is “the guy.” If the Jets want to get their hands on a reliable quarterback for years to come, they must trade up and select Johnny Manziel.

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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