Thirty years can be considered a lifetime in the world of professional sports. Consider the fact that thirty years ago, in 1989, only two quarterbacks passed for over 4,000 yards. Compare that to last season, which saw twelve signal callers eclipse 4,000, and it’d be safe to say we are talking about two completely different sports. The evolution of football is both undeniable and well-documented – teams pass more than ever, bone-jarring hits have been virtually eliminated due to rule changes in favor of player safety, and the every-down back who gets over 270 touches – ten in 1989 compared to just Ezekiel Elliot in 2018 – is a thing of the past. But what has this change in play done to how teams approach the draft, and specifically, the first two rounds of the draft, which are vital to a team’s growth and success down the road?
The American Sports Landscape
On May 14th, 2019, fans of the New York Knicks, the basketball franchise in the global financial center of the world, will be packed around their televisions. No, the Knicks won’t be playing in the second round of the NBA playoffs, which will be occurring at this time – these fans will be watching the NBA Draft lottery, which will determine the order of selection for the 2019 NBA Draft.
Welcome back to Corner Three, and welcome to Tuesday Takeaways – on a Wednesday – as we kick off football season and get the juices back flowing!
With two weeks in the books, NFL football is officially in full swing, and we can make some more meaningful judgements than after just a single game. Here’s what I noticed this week:
Seven long months without the joy of football are finally a thing of the past. Week 1 provided us fans with some much deserved good football. The NFL’s opening weekend had it all: underdogs pulling off big upsets, wild comebacks, and games that went down to the last play. It is unwise to jump to conclusions after only one week, but there are plenty of things to take away from the first week of football.
Finally, we are just one day away from the NFL’s main offseason event. Fans’ hopes are as high as they get, speculations continue to swirl, and those that are fortunate enough to have tickets are preparing to let their boos be heard when Roger Goodell takes the stage. For this mock draft, we are assuming no trades are made, and each team makes their own pick.
The Internet was set ablaze last night when news broke that the Philadelphia Eagles and the Buffalo Bills agreed in principle on a trade that would send the 2013 rushing champion LeSean McCoy to Buffalo in exchange for 2013’s third leading tackler Kiko Alonso. Many were shocked to see the Eagles part ways with their most productive player on offense, who has rushed for over 1,000 yards four out of the last five seasons, for a linebacker coming off an ACL tear. Before writing this trade off as a complete disaster for the Eagles, let’s take a look at the evidence.
Ravens at Patriots
Yet another January trip to Foxborough for the Baltimore Ravens, as the New England Patriots will host the Ravens in a playoff matchup today for the fourth time in six years. For those who easily forget, the Ravens were a Lee Evans dropped touchdown pass away from sweeping the Patriots in their last three-playoff matchups. Here’s what to watch for in the next chapter of the Patriots-Ravens playoff saga.
Sixteen weeks have flown by, and somehow, the NFL regular season is coming to an end. This week, the NFL announced which players the fans voted into this year’s Pro Bowl. Being voted to the Pro Bowl is a huge honor for any player, but the voting process is flawed, and usually turns into a popularity contest rather than voting for the best player at their position. Every year, there are a handful of players wondering what else they had to do to earn a spot in the game. This piece highlights the four biggest snubs of the 2015 Pro Bowl.
All season long, many have dismissed the Cardinals, labeling their hot start as a fluke and waiting for their inevitable downfall. However, even with the passing of 11 weeks, Arizona is still on top. No one has a better record than the Cardinals, who sit at 9-1 and have a record of 16-3 dating back to week 8 of last season. Let’s take a closer look at how the team from the desert has been so dominant this season.