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Defenderdawg : 8/11/2019 9:57 am

Schmeelk Film Review: Rookies get feet wet vs. Jets

CBS2 NY: CBS2's Steve Overmyer talks with Giants beat writer Dan Duggan about the preseason debut of rookie quarterback Daniel Jones and the latest news from training camp
(Video) Sights and Sounds: Giants defeat Jets to open preseason
Big Blue opened up the preseason with a 31-22 victory over the Jets. Check out the best sights and sounds from the win! (Video)

Dunleavy 4 things to watch in Giants training camp this week | Changes coming to starting defense


Glauber Newsday: After one preseason game, Eli Manning-Daniel Jones decision already looms on horizon for Giants

Eisen Shurmur: A good first step for QB Daniel Jones Every pass from Daniel Jones' perfect first TD drive
Watch every pass from New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones' first TD drive against the New York Jets in Week 1 of the 2019 preseason (Video)


Pflum BBV: Film Study: Giants’ secondary, part 1 - the starters
Let’s take a closer look at how the Giants’ new secondary fared against the Jets


Schwartz NYP: Lifelong Giants fan making surprise case for final roster spot


Dan Schneier (@DanSchneierNFL)
8/9/19, 10:52 PM
Dave Gettleman takes a ton of crap on here. Some is warranted. However he is is at worst a solid talent evaluator. I would take ANY of the 3 CBs he drafted in Rds 1, 4, 6 over Eli Apple right now.
The first SB was accorsi’s roster. The second was Eli’s outlier.
Gettleman & gt; Reese


Lombardo Why Giants’ Michael Thomas calls for ‘less grey area’ in NFL’s PED policy as Golden Tate faces suspension appeal

Dan Schneier (@DanSchneierNFL)
8/10/19, 6:11 PM
Michael Thomas to Corey Ballentine on Giants Sights and Sounds, re: Davis Webb:
"The QB they got in was with us last year. He gon let that fly. He don't care. You're going to get a chance for a pick. Whoever is in (looking teammates), you're going to get a chance for a pick."


Volin Boston Globe: Sunday Football Notes:
Lessons learned from two weeks of NFL training camp

“My biggest takeaway from Tom Brady’s new contract, which pays him $23 million in 2019, then automatically voids on the final day of the league year (March 17):
This wasn’t quite another case of Brady and the Patriots working hand in hand. This was more of a true negotiation — both sides got something of value, but also made concessions.

The Patriots really must not have wanted to give Brady an actual extension, though, because the contract is not the savviest cap management. When the deal voids March 17, the Patriots will automatically take a $13.5 million cap hit for 2020 (the final two years on the $20.25 million signing bonus he just received). Even if Brady re-signs in free agency, any contract must start with a $13.5 million cap hit, which could result in a fairly large number.
It would have been better cap management to give Brady two actual years on the back end of the contract, which would have allowed the Patriots to spread the cap hits to $6.5 million in 2020 and 2021 should he walk away next year. But the Patriots look pretty adamant about going year to year with Brady and not locking themselves into any commitment.

As for next spring, Brady is set to be an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career, come March 18. However, nothing is set in stone. Brady and the Patriots can still negotiate a new deal before the current one voids. If Brady signs a new one-year deal before March 18, there would still be the $13.5 million cap hit. If he signs a new two-year deal, it would start with a $6.75 million cap hit.

This is where Brady came out ahead — he now controls the timing of the situation next spring. If the Patriots want the cap relief for 2020, they need to negotiate a deal with Brady by March 17. No more of this waiting around until August, then offering Brady (relative) scraps. And they can’t put the Franchise or Transition Tag on Brady, giving them one fewer negotiating tool.
The Patriots and Brady can always do a new deal after March 18, but it will start with that $13.5 million cap hit. It would be much better for the team – cap-wise and PR-wise – to get a deal done with Brady sooner instead of dragging it out all offseason.
I’m sure Brady would have rather signed a true extension now, and would have liked to get paid more. But he did score a victory by taking control of the timing.

Speaking of timing, Brady signed the deal Aug. 5, confirming the debated point that he didn’t have to wait a full calendar year (Aug. 9) to sign a new contract. And it calls into question why the Patriots didn’t get this done earlier. Sure, they created $5.5 million in salary-cap space, which they can always roll over to next year. But they knew all spring that Brady would be their quarterback this year, and knew they would restructure his deal for cap-saving purposes. Why did they wait until August? Had they done this back in March, they could have used the cap dollars on a Jared Cook or some other help on the roster.

Finally, the two void years have oddly specific salaries, considering Brady will never earn them: $30 million in 2020, and $32 million in 2021. Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but add in the $23 million, and what you get is a three-year deal worth $85 million – an average of $28.3 million per year.”

Rosenthal Top 25 free agents in 2020: Two quarterbacks lead way (for now)

Cody Alexander (@The_Coach_A)
8/10/19, 10:15 PM
Here's how play-action works:

O can ONLY send 5 guys out

Most PAs come from run sets w/ a TE/H-back

These sets reduce the vertical threats (in backfield or on line).

Most Ds carry 5 DBs (Nickel)

O uses run sets + run action to target the DBs w/o a vert threat

Throw to space

Cody Alexander (@The_Coach_A)
8/10/19, 10:17 PM
This is also how RPOs work...

Target a box player w/ run action

Box player = primary fit support (he has a gap!)

PA & RPOs are essentially the same thing, but targeting different parts of a D's structure.

McManaman AZ Republic: Arizona Cardinals release starting defensive lineman Darius Philon one day after arrest

Shaffer Baltimore Sun: Ravens sign defensive tackle Elijah Qualls; QB Robert Griffin III expected to return by Week 1

Jay Skurski (@JaySkurski)
8/11/19, 9:26 AM
The Bills save $2 million against the 2019 salary cap by releasing Vlad Ducasse

Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo)
8/10/19, 7:40 PM
The Bills are signing veteran CB Captain Munnerlyn, source says. Former Panthers corner rejoins Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane in Buffalo as a contributor and mentor for the younger DBs

Marks Charlotte Observer: No paper tickets? Why the Panthers will make you use your phone to get into games

Lieser Chicago Sun Times: Bears’ training-camp injury concerns: WR Anthony Miller, TE Trey Burton

Liesrer Chicago Sun Times: Bears CB John Franklin III has come a long way, but will he make the roster?

Dragon Cincinnati Enquirer: Here's what we learned from Cincinnati Bengals vs. Kansas City Chiefs NFL Week 1 Preseason game

Beighle CincyJungle: Ryan Finley shows promise in Bengals’ first preseason game

Patsko Cleveland Plain Dealer: Cleveland Browns training camp offensive report: Running backs have a big day

Cabot Cleveland Plain Dealer: Redskins knew of Browns’ 2-minute plan; when OBJ, Landry join in ‘it’s gonna be dangerous,’ QB coach says

“We let them know pre-game,’’ said Lindley. “That was the deal. In preseason, we didn’t necessarily want to go blitzkrieg on and catch them off guard. I don’t know how it went down. I just know we talked about like, ‘hey, you know, the referees knew, the other team knew and everybody was on board.'"
Lindley acknowledged that the Browns actually felt better about their execution knowing the Redskins had a heads up.
“Sure,’’ he said. “The regular season, obviously we'd be ‘let's catch them off guard and let's roll. Let's get them on their heels and knock them down.’ But for us, we want to work it. We want to work against a guy who knows what he's doing and knows what they’re expecting.’’
Lindley added, “when you’re rolling like that, as long as we execute and we’re in the right spots and we got the quarterback making the right decisions, we shouldn’t be stopped."

The Browns didn’t have their two best receivers on the field in Beckham and Landry. While the two stars stood on the sidelines resting some minor aches, the Browns opened with Jaelen Strong, Willies and Higgins.
“You throw those guys in the mix, and it's gonna be dangerous,’’ said Lindley. “That’s just guys that are making more plays with the ball.’’

Fields Cleveland Plain Dealer: Dontrell Hilliard: How he looked in Day 13 of Cleveland Browns training camp

Dulik AP: Browns draft pick Mack Wilson making plays at linebackerb utm_source=Twitter& utm_campaign=SocialFlow

Archer ESPN Dallas: Count Jerry Jones pleased with the work of rookie running back Tony Pollard, who had four carries for 16 yards. What was potentially most interesting was the fact that he did not play at all after the first series. “He looks confident out there. We know he’s inordinately understanding what it is he does and what he can do,” Jones said “We’ve seen him do it. We know he’s capable, if he really needs to, carry the whole load.”

Watkins Dallas Morning News: Entering a contract year, La'el Collins' future with Cowboys is unclear, but his financial path is secure

Watkins Dallas Morning News: Travis Frederick: “It was a good feeling to be out there, playing with the guys and being a part of the game. I am trying to treat everything just like a normal preseason and a normal training camp. That is what this was tonight, a good first drive for us.”

Hairopolous Dallas Morning News: Cowboys DE Taco Charlton talks about his future after loss to 49ers

Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball)
8/10/19, 11:24 PM
Stephen Jones on Cowboys LBs:
We're gonna give opposing teams fits...Sean, Jaylon & Leighton... they're not gonna be able to ID.
All 3 can do all 3 positions. They're not going to know who's Will, who's Mike, who's Sam. They can all run to the ball & they all can play coverage

Bill Barnwell (@billbarnwell)
8/10/19, 11:44 PM
As long as the other team doesn’t realize they can put three wide receivers on the field at the same time, Jerry’s golden

O’Halloran Denver Post: Broncos at halfway point of camp: Players whose stock is up, Lock’s progress, injury concerns

Mike Klis (@MikeKlis)
8/10/19, 11:10 PM
One reason why Broncos replaced TE Austin Fort on roster with OT Adam Bisnowaty is TE Bug Howard is expected to return from ankle injury and practice at some point this week

Birkett Detroit Free Press: Lions sign well-traveled QB Josh Johnson, bring Trey Flowers off PUP

Birkett Detroit Free Press: Detroit Lions observations: What to make of Matthew Stafford's day off

Birkett Detroit Free Press: Detroit Lions' Trey Flowers has 'long way to go' to get ready for season

Wilde Wisconsin State Journal: Packers coach Matt LaFleur defuses Aaron Rodgers’ criticism of joint practices

Wilson Houston Chronicle: The Duke? Texans coach is eager to see new running back Johnson on field

McClain Houston Chronicle: Texans’ safeties are a good combination

Erickson Indianapolis Star: Colts camp observations: Deon Cain, Reece Fountain add to intense receiver competition

Erickson Indianapolis Star: Setbacks haven’t stopped Deon Cain from finding his place with the Colts

Ayello Indianapolis Star: Colts legend Dwight Freeney in no rush to figure out life after football

Oehser Training camp 2019: Marrone on Bryan, OL competition, mor

Smits Florida Times Union: Big-play instincts helping Tae Hayes in battle for a Jaguars roster spot

Skretta AP: Mahomes sharp as Chiefs rout Bengals in preseason opener utm_source=Twitter& utm_campaign=SocialFlow

Pryor KC Star: Rookies Hardman, Thompson dominate Chiefs’ preseason victory against Bengals

McDowell KC Times: ‘There’s nothing like it.’ Hometown kid scores a touchdown in Chiefs’ preseason win

LA Times: Chargers’ Drue Tranquill inspired by Pat Tillman and pays tribute

Klein LA Times: Rams’ Blake Bortles looks like capable fill-in QB in preseason loss to Raiders

Hyde Sun Sentinel: Preston Williams is a cautionary star of this Miami Dolphins summer

Walters Kyle Rudolph says Vikings have learned from ’18 mistakes

Reiss ESPN Boston: Quick-hit thoughts and notes around the New England Patriots and NFL:
Patriots teammates pulling for Josh Gordon beyond football

“7. Hockenson a mix of Gronk and Mayo: Watching two days of competitive joint practices between the Patriots and Lions last week, my eye was often drawn to tight end T.J. Hockenson, the Lions' first-round pick out of Iowa (No. 8). His impressive catch radius and reliable hands served up an instant reminder of what the Patriots are missing without tight end Rob Gronkowski, and those in the organization say he's mature beyond his years, similar to 2008 Patriots first-round pick Jerod Mayo.”

Guregian Boston Herald: Cause for optimism heading into Patriots preseason week 2

Teope Saints training camp observations (Aug. 10): Butler returns to full team drills, Cook is human, and more

Stuart Football Perspective: Will Alvin Kamara Average At Least 4.53 YPC in 2018?

Just Despite being without a team since May, new Saints RB Kerwynn Williams trusts in the timing

Mehta NYDN: Adam Gase-Joe Douglas relationship is thriving

Cimini ESPN NY: - A look at what's happening around the New York Jets: Early signs: Jets GM Joe Douglas has a plan, and Adam Gase likes it

Rich Cimini (@RichCimini)
8/11/19, 8:50 AM
Jets PK Chandler Catanzaro, struggling in camp, has retired, the team announced. They signed K Taylor Bertolet. The Cat Man has run out of lives

Gehlken LV Review Journal: Raiders rookies rile up Black Hole in 14-3 preseason win

Schrock NBC Bay Area: Nathan Peterman edges ahead in Raiders' backup quarterback competition

Gutierrez ESPN Oakland: Gruden defends AB; calls helmet 'personal' issue

Robinson Yahoo Sports: From retirement threat to frostbitten feet, Antonio Brown puts entire premise of 'Hard Knocks' on notice

Ostler SF Chronicle: For Raiders’ Antonio Brown, best headgear would be a tinfoil helmet

Bair NBC Bay Area: Arden Key, Maurice Hurst benefit from playing in Raiders' preseason opener

Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL)
8/11/19, 1:20 AM
Gruden said Johnny Townsend has “hands full” with rookie punter A.J. Cole. Said of Cole’s performance in joint practice vs. Rams: “We haven’t seen kicks like that since Lechler was here or King. This guy really has a live leg, and it looks like he can directional punt and hold.”

McLane ‘This ain’t nothing': Eagles veterans reflect on old-school training camp

Kempski Phillyvoice: A recap of the Eagles' injuries, four weeks before Week 1

Kaye Eagles trade for Eli Harold: Breaking down defensive end depth following deal | Here’s how swap could impact Shareef Miller, Daeshon Hall

Rutter Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Towering Zach Gentry gives Steelers clarity in tight end pecking order

Fittipaldo Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Steelers No. 1 draft pick Devin Bush impressive in his NFL debut

Branch SF Chronicle: Rookie receivers Jalen Hurd, Deebo Samuel shine in 49ers’ 17-9 preseason win over Cowboys

Chan NBC Bay Area: Nick Mullens, C.J. Beathard neck and neck for 49ers' backup QB job

Branch SF Chronicle: 49ers receiver Trent Taylor out indefinitely after foot surgery

Inman SJ Mercury News: 49ers’ Taylor out after foot surgery, more injuries come in exhibition opener

Branch SF Chronicle: 49ers’ Dante Pettis hasn’t secured starting role; nightmare avoided

Eric Branch (@Eric_Branch)
8/11/19, 1:11 AM
49ers OT Shon Coleman had a cast on his right leg and was using a scooter to get around in the locker room. His season is believed to be over

Boyle Seahawks Sign QB J.T. Barrett & LB Juwon Young; Waive SS Marwin Evans & LB Chris Worley

Jude Seattle Times: Xavier Turner’s journey to the edge of Seahawks’ roster: 9,064 miles, 4 teams, 3 tryouts, 1 NFL debut

Stroud TB Times: Could Ronald Jones, Peyton Barber rush the Bucs back on top?

Lenzi Buffalo News: NFL Draft snub motivates former UB wide receiver Anthony Johnson

Bites The Times: Jordan Whitehead competing for starting job in Buccaneers' secondary

Wyatt Observations from Day 11 of Titans Training Camp

Bacharach The Tennessean: Observations from Titans training camp: Jurrell Casey moved to active roster

Skrbina The Tennessean: Arthur Smith gets first taste as Titans offensive coordinator

Bacharach The Tennessean: The drops are mounting for Titans wide receiver Taywan Taylor. Is he a candidate to be cut?

Harris The Tennessean: Titans QB room 'something pretty special' with Ryan Tannehill addition

Bacharach The Tennessean: Titans’ Kalif Raymond's fight for roster spot mimics spiritual journey in Thailand

Copeland Washington Post: Interceptions rule the day, and other Redskins camp takeaways

John Keim (@john_keim)
8/11/19, 8:02 AM
Don’t know if this was out there or not but the Redskins signed Jalan McClendon as their fourth QB per source. Replaces Josh Woodrum who tore his pectoral muscle in the preseason opener

Fowler Rookie Playmaker Jimmy Moreland Shines In Preseason Opener


Valente Football is Family: The Story of United States Army Colonel Gregory D. Gadson


Branch SF Chronicle: Former 49ers wide receiver Dave Parks, the No. 1 pick in 1964, dies at 77

“Parks played with the 49ers, Saints and Oilers in his 10-year career, but his best seasons came in San Francisco from 1964-1967. He was named to three Pro Bowls in his four seasons with the team and was a first-team All-Pro in 1965 when he led the league in catches (80), receiving yards (1,344) and receiving touchdowns (12).
Parks, the No. 1 pick in 1964, Irving Fryar (1984) and Keyshawn Johnson (1996) are the only wideouts who have been drafted first overall. Parks, tight end Harry Babcock (1953) and quarterback Alex Smith (2005) are the only players the 49ers have drafted No. 1 overall.
As a rookie with the 49ers, Parks ranked third in the NFL in yards per catch (19.5) and had 36 catches for 703 yards and eight touchdowns, which was seventh in the league. However, he began to completely click with quarterback John Brodie in his triple-crown season in 1965.”

Nowak Former Saints WR, TE Dave Parks dies at 77; remembered for 'speed, sure hands ... sharp elbows'

“Parks went on to sign with the Saints in 1968 for a reported salary of $60,000, a year after they were added as an NFL expansion team. He played five seasons in New Orleans, where his role shifted to tight end. He accounted for 149 catches, 2,254 yards and 16 touchdowns in that five-year span.

In the days before restricted free agency, then-commissioner Pete Rozelle decided compensation for such signings — opting for the Saints to surrender two first-round picks to the 49ers. 
“Two number-one draft picks from a bottom club is ridiculous. That was absolutely uncalled for," Parks is quoted as saying by AJ Media. “I go down (to New Orleans) and I’m supposed to walk on water. I can’t even get to the lake. But it wasn’t because I was any different. As an individual, you can’t do anything without the team.”

Gutierrez ESPN Oakland: Raiders great Fred Biletnikoff shows Peyton Manning the magic of Stickum

“For Fred Biletnikoff, it was the 1970s all over again when the Oakland Raiders Hall of Fame receiver broke out an old friend for a newer friend, then lathered gobs of Stickum on Peyton Manning's hands and forearms to show the former quarterback what it was like to play with the stuff for Manning's ESPN+ series Peyton's Places to commemorate the NFL's 100th anniversary.
"I don't know what he expected," Biletnikoff said later, laughing. "He was very interested in it. After we put it on him, he started making one-handed catches and really put on a great performance."
Biletnikoff was howling now, recalling how, after he fired the football at Manning with the JUGS machine, Manning simply snagged the ball midflight with one hand. Then he did it again. And again.
The pages to Manning's playbook stuck to Manning's hands, making the paper unusable and unreadable.
No wonder then-Raiders equipment manager Dick Romanski had to manually feed Biletnikoff his chewing gum on the sidelines, before, during and after games.
"Two Juicy Fruits, one Wrigley," Romanski told NFL Films. "Or two Spearmint, one Doublemint."
Romanski would have his staff unwrap the gum, place the sticks in two separate plastic containers -- two Juicy Fruits and one Wrigley in one container; two Spearmint and one Doublemint in another -- and he would place one container in each pocket on game day in preparation for the receiver.
It was a formula for Biletnikoff, who chewed gum rather than use a mouthpiece and, yes, Biletnikoff fed Manning a stick of gum too. Just for old times' sake.
Stickum was everywhere in Biletnikoff's heyday. In cold-weather games, he would put it on the inside of his thighs to keep the goop warm so it would not freeze on him and lose its consistency.
"But not too close to the crotch," Biletnikoff said with another laugh. "You don't want that stuff too close to your privates."
And while Romanski was just fine unwrapping and then feeding gum to Biletnikoff, the mess Stickum created was an issue for Romanski's day job.
"Dick used to yell at me, 'I gotta clean these goddamn uniforms!"' Biletnikoff recalled. "So I just said, 'Talk to Al [Davis].' He just always told us, 'Do whatever you got to do to win.' So ..."
Romanski's son, Bob, the Raiders' current equipment manager, explained the cleaning hassle of Stickum.
"It was all over the place," Bob Romanski recalled. "Helmets were the worst.
"Mondays were, the whole day, with turpentine trying to clean it off the helmets and off the shoulder pads. Yeah, it was everywhere. They'd sit after the game -- there was a washer and a dryer in the back of the old Raider locker room in the [Oakland] Coliseum -- they'd sit there with that paint thinner and towels and just sit there for hours, just rubbing it, trying to get it all off. I don't know how they did it."
Back when the AFL and NFL both held drafts in late November, Biletnikoff was taken by the Raiders in the second round of the 1964 AFL draft and also was selected by the Detroit Lions in the third round of the NFL draft. Biletnikoff signed with Davis under a goalpost in the Gator Bowl immediately following his Florida State team's win over Oklahoma on Jan. 2, 1965...”

Kendle Canton Repository: Memorable NFL firsts for Providence Steam Roller include first night game

Giants Birthdays 8-11

In Memoriam

Hal Mitchell LT D14-UCLA 1952 NYG 1952 Born 8-11-1930 Died 11-15-1993
Part 2  
Defenderdawg : 8/11/2019 11:05 am : link


Traina Locked on Giants Podcast: ICYMI: Mark Schofield stopped by yesterday to talk Giants quarterbacks. As usual, he dropped some great info nuggets (Audio)


Emory Hunt (@FBallGameplan)
8/11/19, 10:36 AM
Impressive consistency in the route running by Giants receivers. That’s a testament to coaching; which is why Tyke Tolbert is one of the best in the business


Stuart Football Perspective: 2019 Team Records (Coach, Quarterback, Rushers, Receivers) – Falcons

Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter)
8/11/19, 10:34 AM
At least four teams have called the Ravens to inquire about trading for kicker Kaare Vedvik, with at least two of those calls coming from NFC North teams, per a league source. Ravens don’t have to do anything in the short term, but will deal the kicker at some point this summer

Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN)
8/11/19, 10:37 AM
Sources: Jets RG Brian Winters’ shoulder injury is not believed to be serious. The team expects him to be ready for Week 1 against the Bills. No surgery planned. NYJ will take a smart, conservative plan for rest of preseason

Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1)
8/11/19, 10:38 AM
According to a Steelers statement, receivers coach Darryl Drake passed away this morning. "We are at a loss for words," Steelers president Art Rooney II said

Jennifer Lee Chan (@jenniferleechan)
8/11/19, 1:13 AM
Shanahan said Trent Taylor has a Jones fracture in his foot. He had surgery so that the recovery time would be 4-6 wks as opposed to taking the risk that it might break, which would make the recovery time 8-10 wks.
Best case: KS is hopeful to have Taylor back for Week 1.


Stuart Football Perspective: Best Players in Pro Football History: 11-20, by Brad Oremland

Frye Football Perspective: All Time NFC East Teams, by Bryan Frye

“Wide Receivers – Michael Irvin, Del Shofner, and Terrell Owens
I wasn’t quite sure where to put TO, so I included him with the NFC East, since he spent time with both the Eagles and Cowboys. His exploits on and off the field are well known and don’t need more time here. Irvin seems to be underrated by modern fans with fantasy football mindsets. Throw on any tape, and you’ll see a violent route runner who had his way with almost every defensive back in his path. Bob Hayes was good too, but he tends to get too much credit for things he didn’t do. Some of that credit rightfully belongs to super huge Hall of Fame snub Shofner, who forced schematic changes before Hayes ever played a game of pro football.2”

“Tackles – Rosey Brown and Rayfield Wright
How highly do I regard Brown? When Jim Parker was playing tackle, Brown was the only player to take the GridFe Guardian Award from the Colts legend. He was an incredible athlete who had the physical skills to excel as a tight end had he so chosen. I’ve seen footage of him blocking downfield and running faster than his halfback. Wright was a similarly talented athlete who was adept at neutralizing pass rushers. He narrowly edges out Boomer Brown, who was a dominant force but didn’t spend enough time in the division.”

Center – Mel Hein
As a center, Hein actually won a league MVP award. He made an all pro team every year from 1931-1941, had a couple down years, and ended his career with all pro nods in 1944 and 1945. Bednarik was great too, but I was more impressed with his work at OLB (you can view Brad’s thoughts on him here). As far as modern players go, I’d like to see Travis Frederick overcome his medical issues and make a push for this spot eventually.

Defensive End – Reggie White and Michael Strahan
Playing for the Eagles, White had more sacks than games played over an eight year span! He could sink inside and play tackle at a Hall of Fame level, or he could play wide and manhandle blockers at will.3 Strahan was the complete package. Everyone knows and laments his official sack record, but fewer talk about his ability to rack up sacks without forsaking his responsibilities against the run. Honorable mention to Andy Robustelli, and special mention to Al Blozis, who I earnestly believe would be a slam dunk, inner circle Hall of Famer had he not died as an actual hero.

Outside Linebacker – Lawrence Taylor and DeMarcus Ware
Chuck Howley and Seth Joyner faced uphill battles trying to knock these guys off the mountaintop. Howley is among the great coverage specialists the position has seen, and Joyner seemingly had the ability to do anything he wanted, from lining up across from a tackle to spelling at safety. I love Bednarik’s work as well, but I didn’t like him enough at either center or linebacker to put him in one of those spots. Instead, I opted to go with arguably the greatest defender in history (LT) and the recent guy who reminded me most of him (until Von Miller came along).
Middle/Inside Linebacker – Harry Carson and Sam Huff
While I don’t think Huff’s performance quite lived up to his reputation, he nonetheless earns a spot here. Carson was a liability in coverage and wouldn’t star in today’s game, but his work against the run was phenomenal. Some say he doesn’t belong in Canton, but I think that’s a bit unfair. He seemed to do an underrated job maintaining order on defense when LT decided to go off script.4

Safety – Emlen Tunnell and Brian Dawkins
Tunnell is both the first primarily defensive player and the first black player inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He played a vital role in the famed Umbrella Defense, with uncanny mix of range and devastating hitting ability. He also happened to be one of the best return men of his era. Dawkins had no weaknesses as a player. He could cover deep, patrol intermediate zones, stuff runs, and was the unquestioned leader of his defense. Jimmy Patton and Cliff Harris are honorable mentions.”

Pittsburgh Post Gazette: When the Steelers almost lost Joe Greene

“Training camp that year began on July 16. Almost two weeks into practices, Greene and the Steelers still hadn’t come to terms on his rookie deal.
Pittsburgh Press reporting from July 29, 1969, framed the standoff as a giant flex by Greene’s agent Bucky Woy.

“We are ready to go to court,” Woy told the Press’ Bob Smizik. “If we can’t beat them in court, then something is wrong. This isn’t the free-enterprise system. We don’t want to go to court, but the boys just don’t have a bargaining position anymore. Our legal counsel tells us we are solidly prepared and we can beat them.”
Dan Rooney, then the Steelers’ vice president, responded to Woy in the next issue of the Press.
“We’ve been more than liberal in our negotiations with Greene,” Rooney told the Press’ Pat Livingston. “We’ve offered him a fair figure, but we’re not going to pay him more than we’re giving our proven veterans, many of whom have spent years establishing themselves as bona fide stars.”
The exact dollar amount that Woy and Greene were asking for was never confirmed in either story, nor was the Steelers’ initial offer. Livingston did, however, bring up reports that Greene’s initial asking price was $400,000 and that there was a $130,000 difference between that figure and the team’s offer.
Rooney, for what it’s worth, denied that $130,000 chasm, telling Livingston, “It’s not $100,000.”
Come Aug. 2, Greene decided to break his silence about the ongoing negotiations. It wasn’t what the Steelers probably wanted to hear.

“I think they’ve used me,” Greene told the Associated Press in a story run by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “They should either pay me or trade me.”
That quote might send shivers down the spines of Steelers fans in 2019, but this one might be even more frightening: “I was really looking forward to playing for the Steelers. But I don’t know. It’s become personal now, you see.”
Reporting on Greene went dark in the Post-Gazette and Press for the next week. But on Aug. 8, Greene and the Steelers finally reached a contract agreement.”
The Manning-Biletnikoff material is gold. Gold, Jerry!  
RickInCharlotte : 8/11/2019 12:45 pm : link
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