My new favorite NFL team had a great draft.

The death of the XFL was close to the near death of my fandom for professional football.  As a St. Louis native I have now seen two professional teams disappear from my city over the last five years.  I had totally bought into the Battlehawks.  I was screaming KaKaw along with my fellow St. Louisans and dreaming of the future of football in my city and it was taken away again.  Now on the hunt for a new team to support once again, I have found myself on the outskirts of the band wagon the Kansas City Chiefs have been pushing around my city.  While the Chiefs may be a Missouri team my inability to connect with a fanbase that is underrated in their obnoxiousness will forever keep me from enjoying their greatness.  I went into the 2020 draft looking for a team and I may have found it.  Maybe…..

The Draft

First Round Pick: WR Jerry Jeudy, Alabama

Second Round Pick: WR KJ Hamler, Penn State

Third Round Pick: CB Michael Ojemudia, Iowa

Fourth Round Pick: TE Albert Okwuegbunam, Missouri

The Broncos look like they have found their franchise quarterback in 2nd year quarterback Drew Lock.  Lock started the season on the bench waiting for the franchise to realize that Joe Flacco was no longer a viable NFL quarterback.  When Lock was finally given the chance he ran with it, cementing himself as the new starting quarterback of the present and future. In his five starts the Broncos went 4-1, throwing for 1,020 yards along with a 64% completion rate.  Immediately a chemistry between Lock and new #1 receiver Courtland Sutton developed.  The offense was lacking further exterior threats other than Sutton leading into the draft.  They were able to find what they were looking for at the #15 pick, grabbing Alabama wide receiver Jerry Jeudy.  Jeudy was competing with CeeDee Lamb for the top rated player at their position.  Jeudy has the ability to get separation on the college level averaging 7.8 yards after the catch. His speed will transition to the NFL as well as his ability to make plays from anywhere on the field.  

The Broncos continued to be aggressive in filling needs on the offensive end grabbing KJ Hamler out of Penn State.  Another player with great speed that will fit into the slot receiver role.  He is a little further away from a completed project than the other recievers that were available in the draft.  If he can fit into the slot role he could be a sleeper that makes an impact in big ways during the season. He is an explosive potential playmaker.  

An underrated 4th round pick was the playmaker out of Mizzou,  tight-end Albert Okwuegbhunam.  A very raw prospect that will have time to develop behind Noah Fant.  Okuegbhunam averaged a touchdown every four catches in college, he is a future red zone threat if he can improve on his routes and speed off the line.  He was a high upside pick that won’t be forced into anything right away.  I loved that Denver was willing to take the talent in the later rounds.  

Defensively, Denver’s No. 2 corner position was a revolving door all season last year; it’s possible Michael Ojemudia was selected to be a potential starter sometime in the near future.  He will fit into Vic Fangio’s system which can hide deficiencies of the secondary allowing them to gain experience and progress in the NFL. 

Free Agency

Free Agent addition: RB Melvin Gordon, OL Graham Glasnow

The Broncos quietly had a great offseason before the draft. GM John Elway knew that he needed to protect his new franchise Quarterback.  Adding veteran Graham Glasnow on a 4-year deal from Detroit was a great way to help fill a hole in the line.  

After suring up the line the Broncos went out and made a surprising impact signing.  Adding former Charger Melvin Gordon in free agency has put Denver in the conversation for potentially the best runningback combination in the entire NFL. 

I loved everything Denver did in the draft.  They were clearly trying to build around their young quarterback.  Adding speed and athletes that are NFL ready. This team is a serious contender for a playoff spot in 2021.  John Elway has made some mistakes over the last few years but it is looking like he has found his groove as a GM.  

NFL 2018: Five Things I was wrong about

Being wrong sucks, but admitting you were wrong is the sign of growth.  Here are the five things that I was completely wrong about before the start of the season.

Chicago Bears are the third best team in their own division.

When the Bears pulled off what could have been the steal of the century acquiring Khalil Mack from the Raiders I knew it was going to be an impactful move.  But with an offense that featured a second year QB that had not yet proven much on the NFL level and a new head coach that was transitioning his style I wasn’t sold on them as NFC North winners.

I was very wrong.  Matt Nagy has taken Trubisky and the Bears offense to a new level in 2018 while utilizing his Swiss army knife RB Tarik Cohen and many ancillary pieces.  This team is still built around their defense but the surprise for most teams will be Nagy’s offense in the playoffs.  Multiple targets that can step up at any time will be a headache for opposing defensive coordinators. 


Can’t believe I fell for Kirk Cousins.

Le’Veon Bell is going to play in 2018.

I was one of those guys that drafted Bell in his fantasy draft.  I am also one of those guys that refused to trade him despite great offers…actually turning down a trade of Michael Thomas and Andrew Luck. 

Bell stuck to his guns, as did the Steelers, sitting out the entire season.  James Conner and Jaylen Samuels filled in admirably for Bell, but the Steelers are most likely not making the playoffs and whether this was because of Bell or not I was still very wrong about his playing status. I’m not mad at Bell but it really sucked for my fantasy squad.

The Jaguars are a Superbowl favorite in the AFC.

I bought into Jacksonville and Blake Bortles. Shame on me.  Injuries have been a problem for the Jags, Leonard Fournette has a problem with staying healthy and without him this team just has not been able to put together a kind of consistent run. 

After defeating Patriots I thought that maybe I was right about the potential of this team and maybe Blake Bortles is actually good, when you are wrong, you are wrong.

I was wrong.


The Broncos may make the playoffs.

This was an in season change of opinion Phillip Lindsey came out of nowhere to become an elite level RB in the league. Two upset victories over the Chargers and the Steelers made me believe this team was going to make a real run in their division.  Then the real Case Keenum stood up. The one-dimensional offense of the Broncos became very obvious, Lindsey had to face stacked boxes with zero passing ability.  Von Miller and Bradley Chubb are both great players but a team with no real offense and terrible coaching never truly had a chance to succeed.

Baker Mayfield was the best Quarterback in the Draft.

Drafting Baker Mayfield #1 overall last season, seemed like another blunder from the Cleveland front office.  With standouts like Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen presumably ranked ahead of Mayfield it made no sense to go after the controversial Oklahoma QB. Mayfield was held back by the clueless Hue Jackson and when given the opportunity Mayfield immediately made his impact and began to turn around the sorry franchise. Mayfield is the leading candidate to win rookie of the year (in my opnion) and has proven me and all other doubters…cough Colin Cowherd… completely wrong.  Mayfield is a star and will be for a long time.

What I learned from Week 3

The Broncos QB situation is still a problem.

Case Keenum has had a solid NFL career.  Highlighted by a pro bowl season for the Vikings in 2017 he was a prize on the free agent market that many teams were interested in.  While he was the the grand prize he still garnered a lot of interest from multiple teams.  Eventually he landed with the Denver Broncos.  A team with a solid defense and good core of receivers, it made sense for him and the organization.

The Broncos jumped out to a 2-0 start before falling to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday 27-14.  Keenum did not play like a prize QB going 22 for 34 for 192 yards, no touchdowns and an interception.  What was the most staggering was Denver’s inefficiencies in the red zone. An inability of Keenum to score in the red zone along with an inability

Cleveland has their QB.

The Cleveland Browns have moved into the new era of a QB savior.  Baker Mayfield made his debut with the Browns on Thursday Night Football leading them to their first victory in over 600 days.  The new savior of Cleveland sports was crowned.  The question is whether he will be the new King of Cleveland sports or will he follow in the line of Cleveland QB’s that paved the way.  Is he Lebron or Manziel?

No matter what Baker turns out to be the people of Cleveland have fallen in love again.  Hue Jackson could be the only one standing in the way of this new affair.  Jackson refuses to name Baker the starter despite him leading the Browns to victory.  Hue still believes in Tyrod Taylor but the fans are ready for their #1 draft pick to play and play now.

The Patriots have real issues.

The Patriots fell to the Detroit Lions Sunday night 26-10 in a game that they were never truly in.  While the loss is bad, it pales in comparison to the issues in the locker room.  Reports of turmoil between Tom Brady and Bill Belichick continue to make national attention.  Now talks of the Patriots potentially looking to move on from Rob Gronkowski continues to fuel the fire of dissention in the locker room.

We have seen the Patriots get off to slow starts in the past but with the continued in house disruptions you have to question whether this team is on the same page. Eventually losing coordinator after coordinator has to cause a problem for the on-field preparation.  There is a lack of talent as well.  Is this the year where Brady and Belichick can’t get past their differences?