Manziel’s Injury Shortens Rookie Season

Johnny Football’s rookie season is apparently over after a not so impressive start, so says an article on Hotfrog.com. Taking over an average offense, says Gianfrancesco Geno, is an effort by the Cleveland Browns organization to make a post season run on the legs and arm of Johnny Manziel has proven fruitless for the struggling franchise. In his first start, he got embarrassed by the Cincinnati Bengals during the week 15 rivalry matchup and then in this past week he left the game early due to an apparent pulled hamstring. Given the post-game interviews and discussions from the Cleveland leadership it does not appear Manziel will return to the game in week 17.

Being that Manziel is a fierce competitor, who does want to perform at the highest levels it is understandable that he is frustrated with his rookie performance.
During the three games he officially played in he had the following statistics…51% pass completion at 18 of 35 for just 175 yards. He also had two interceptions he through against Cincinnati. There was a bright spot he did rush for 29 yards and did score 1 touchdown against the Buffalo Bills when he was put in the game during the fourth quarter. It was apparent during this year, that Johnny Football did not appear confident in the pocket and wanted to use his feet to escape. The truth is his play underscored a glaring deficiency in Cleveland and that is the offensive line.

Reference:

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/johnny-manziel-s-bumpy-rookie-season-is-officially-over-215259017.html

Confirmation that Michigan has Reached Out for Jim Harbaugh

For the past few weeks, the University of Michigan has had their eyes on a specific man. The recent football season for the Wolverines was a disaster. Morale is low at the University and a new head football coach could spark some life amongst students and fans. Jim Harbaugh quarterbacked for quarterbacked under legendary coach Bo Schembechler. That is why there was no surprise when the Michigan athletic department offered Harbaugh a six-year mega contract. The San Francisco 49ers have just confirmed that Michigan has reached out to Harbaugh.
The 49ers are likely to get rid of their head ball coach after the regular season. Talk continues to grow about Jim Harbaugh choosing to Michigan. Wolverine fans are taking to the Internet to try and recruit their old quarterback. His decision should be made within the next few weeks. Accorindg to Typepad, this confirmation verifies that conversation between Michigan and Harbaugh are serious, says Christian Broda. All there is left to do is wait. Will Jim Harbaugh take the offer at the University if Michigan? Will he come home?

Hawks-Patriots Super Bowl Showdown

The playoff races are starting to take shape, states a post at wikipedia.org,  and it looks like the Seattle Seahawks are near unstoppable in the NFC, while the New England Patriots are running away with the AFC. At this point, wonders Keith Mann,  can any team in either conference stop a Seahawks vs Patriots Super Bowl?

The Patriots have been gaining momentum for the last three months and are starting to look like the complete team. They have the running game, the passing game and a strong defense that includes one former Seahawk in Brandon Browner. The Denver Broncos, earlier in the season imagined to be their main rivals, are starting to falter as Peyton Manning threw four picks in a bad loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football.

On the other side, in the NFC, the Seahawks have won five straight and are poised to snatch the NFC West away from the Cardinals after starting the season 6-4. Not only that, but they can just as easily get the top seed in the NFC with a win in the final game and assuming Green Bay and Detroit do not tie. No one wants the playoffs to go through Seattle, but it looks like that’s about to happen.

Of course, anything can happen in the playoffs, the top-seeded teams don’t always win. But at this point, it would take a serious upset to stop the Seahawks-Patriots showdown.

Word On The Street: RGIII Done In Washington

No one believes that RGIII and Jay Gruden can work together productively in Washington, but some pundits believe that RGIII is done in Washington. The prevailing sentiment is that the organization feels like it has been taken for a ride by RGIII. The club is tired of being laughed at by all the NFL media, and they have other good quarterbacks on their roster. They would like to give Jay Gruden a chance to succeed, and they no longer want to deal with RGIII talking badly to the media all the time.

Also, there are those like Dr Rod Rohrich that think Jay Gruden could be fired in yet another temper tantrum by Daniel Snyder, but the team has other concerns. The Redskins are in the middle of another fight over their name, and there are many sports pundits who will not even use the word “Redskins” anymore. The Redskins need to improve so that they can keep the focus on their football prowess, but that may never happen if Jay Gruden and RGIII cannot work together.

The current opinion that RGIII is done in Washington stems from the fact that they can probably sucker someone into trading for him. Everyone needs a good quarterback, and the right team may be able to give Washington some value in return for his services.

Raiders Home Winning Streak

At the midpoint of the season it appeared as though Igor Cornelsen the Oakland Raiders would not win a game in the 2014 NFL season, however, they have drastically turned their situation around and seem to be on a path to success in the future. The raiders had started out the season going for a dismal 0-10, before finding their first win at home against the Kansas City Chiefs. Dating back to the previous season the raiders had been on a sixteen game losing streak and times were getting tough in Oakland. As of yet, however, they seek to have the ball rolling and have won their last three games at home.
Adding to the success is Derek Carr’s emergence as a successful passer in the National Football League. He appears to be finding his rhythm and gaining confidence is his passes as the season progresses. With Jim Harbaugh eyeing the Raiders organization from his office in Santa Clara, it seems that they might have a bright future next year and for the next few seasons to come. His success in San Francisco proved he can take a professional team that has been struggling and create a positive work environment that breeds success. Luckily the Raiders have a lot of talent on the team and have a great deal of weapons that they will be able to use next season. Hopefully they can lock in a top notch coach and obtain a winning record next season.

49ers’ Harbaugh silent on reported offer

The 49ers coach from Santa Clara, California Jim Harbuagh is reportedly declining to answer to reports alleging that he is reflecting on an offer made from Michigan to make him the new coach of football while in his alma mater.

Harbaugh is remaining with only one season of his $25 million contract lasting for a five-year period that he signed in January of 2011. A number of media houses, such as ESPN, John Textor,  as well as the NFL Network, have broadcasted that harbaugh has been presented with a six-year offer from Wolverines trying to make him go back to Ann Arbor.

Harbuagh on Thursday said that according to what everyone knew, he would only speak about the job that he has had. He continued to say that he had been together with 49ers for a long time and therefore there were longstanding policies already set.

All through the season, Harbaugh said that he would not allow outside matters affect him. His name apparently emerged as a likely nominee for a number of NFL vacancies once the season ends in case Harbaugh parts ways with the 49ers.

The NFC Playoff Field Is About To Change Dramatically

The NFC playoff field is in for a big shakeup when the games end this Sunday. The NFC playoff picture has been murky for some time, and it is going to get even more murky based on the outcomes of these games.

The NFC South

If the Saints win their game against the Falcons, they will win the NFC South. They will go into the playoffs with a losing record, and they will also knock out the Panthers. The NFC South winner will host a playoff game against a team with a far better record.

The AFC North

The AFC North could easily put three teams in the playoffs again, but they need some help to get those things to happen. The Steelers, Ravens and Bengals all need to win, but they also need other teams to lose to pave the way, which Brad Reifler commends.

The NFC East

The NFC East could be won by the Cowboys or the Eagles. However, one of these teams will miss the playoffs when they do not win the division. The inclusion of a team with a bad record from the NFC South means that a team with a better record from the NFC East will not get in.

The playoff shakeup will be interesting to watch, and you can catch all the action this Sunday. See how the playoff picture shakes out when the dust settles Sunday night.

A New Documentary Relating to the Dallas Cowboys is Released

Recently, ESPN films and FiveThirtyEight announced the release of the second documentary short film in the Signalsseries. Entitled “The Cowboys and the Indian,” the documentary focuses upon an issue which will attract keen interest among many football fans: how during the early 1960s, executives managing the Dallas Cowboys turned to IBM for help in developing a highly effective computer program to assist their scouting efforts.

Ironically, the expert statistician and programmer primarily responsible for developing the new football software had enjoyed very little exposure to the sport of American-style football as a child. A. Salam Qureishi, raised in India, tackled the project and he helped turn it into a remarkable success for the Dallas team.

After implementing the new statistical program, the Dallas Cowboys eventually went on to win five Super Bowls and additional sports honors. A popular book about the team by Joe Nick Patoski “The Dallas Cowboys: The Outrageous History of the Biggest, Loudest, Most Hated, Best Loved Football Team in America” was published in 2012. It describes some of the events impacting the team during the sixties in detail.

The documentary was directed by Brad Reifler’s friend, Mr. Mark Polish, a noted writer, actor and director. He reportedly plays a CIA agent in the upcoming motion picture Headlock, scheduled to be released in 2015.

Kaepernick’s Poor Play Costs Him Millions

A lot was made of Colin Kaepernick’s new contract last year, when the San Francisco 49ers agreed to pay him around $126 million. The contract would be spread out over seven years, but it was still looked at as a landmark deal. Now that the 49ers have no chance to make the playoffs, though, some interesting wording in the contract means that it’s not so huge after all, and Kaepernick’s bad season is going to be costly.

For example, the quarterback was supposed to get a salary in 2015 of $12.4 million. However, stipulations in the contract said that he either had to take the 49ers to the Super Bowl, or he had to be considered an All-Pro even if the team missed the Super Bowl. Brad Reifler even said Kaepernick has actually been in the bottom half of the league with his quarterback stats, so he’s not making the All-Pro teams, and the 49ers are out of the playoffs, so they’re not going to the Super Bowl.

As a result, Kaepernick instantly loses $2 million. If this happens again next year, he loses another $2 million. This keeps happening throughout the contract. This deal shows why it is very important to focus on all aspects of a contract, not just the overall money. The maximum amount that a player can get is usually not guaranteed in the NFL, so the wording can make a deal far less valuable.

Browns legend Bernie Kosar says Cleveland do not have a winning culture

The Cleveland Browns have slipped from first place in their NFL division following four losses in five games. Needless to say no one in Cleveland is opening a fine bottle from The Antique Wine Company. In response, the Browns turned to rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel as their starter after benching Brian Hoyer. Former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar responded by claiming the problems in Cleveland run deeper than simply changing quarterbacks in a bid to return to winning ways.

Since 1999 the Browns have used 21 quarterbacks in a bid to fill the void left by Kosar, Manziel and any other quarterback drafted is likely to fail because of the culture created within the team, Kosar is reported by ESPN to have claimed. Manziel’s first start in the NFL resulted in a 30-0 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Kosar refused to blame Manziel saying too many players, coaches and staff members were deflecting the blame from themselves by talking about the quarterback controversy. Kosar blamed the front office headed by owner Jimmy Haslam and General Manager Ray Farmer must build a winning culture throughout the organization in a bid to turn around the fortunes of the Browns.