Cincinnati Bengals: your new Super Bowl favorite

marvin lewis

It seems early to already be down to just one undefeated team in the AFC, but the Bengals are playing like they could maintain that storyline well into November.

They’re led by a defense who is hungry for more. Aside from the Ravens making a game of it late during the fourth quarter, the Bengals have been almost untouchable. That defense is suffocating opposing quarterbacks and running attacks; while the offense continues to play simple, efficient football.

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Which quarterback should the Chicago Bears draft?

Matt Scott

Before you get up in arms about the title, let me make this clear: this is not an article proposing that the Bears should pick a quarterback in the 1st round of this year’s draft to replace Jay Cutler.

If the Bears take a quarterback at all, it will be with one of their later selections in the 4th, 5th, 6th, or even 7th rounds. No quarterback taken that late will challenge for a starting spot in year one. It will be a “project” type player who will have to pay his dues in practice and in the film room while patiently waiting for a starting shot down the rode a la Aaron Rodgers.

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Four former Wisconsin Badgers headed to the 2013 Pro Bowl

Russell Wilson Pro Bowl

Late scratches to Atlanta’s Matt Ryan and New England’s Rob Gronkowski paved the way for Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and Houston Texans tight end Owen Daniels to join the league’s best in the 2013 Pro Bowl.

Wilson and Daniels join Cleveland Browns offensive lineman Joe Thomas and Texans defensive end J.J. Watt as the four former Wisconsin Badgers to make the team.

Here’s a quick summary of their great seasons and how they ended up as Pro Bowl invitees: [Read more…]

Chicago Bears Season Outlook: 3rd Quarter

Brandon-Marshall

With a 4-1 record, it’s been all smiles for the Bears so far. Can they keep it up through the 3rd quarter of games this season?

The Bears have taken full advantage of facing the weakest strength of schedule in team history over the first 5 games of the season. They’ve rode their dominating defense to a 4-1 record and now stand alone at the top of the NFC North after the Minnesota Vikings fell to the Washington Redskins this past weekend.

In my first 2 installments of “Quarter Previews” (1, 2), I correctly predicted the Bears would be 4-1 through the bye week. The next 3 games remaining in the 2nd quarter of the season remain to be seen, but the Lions, Panthers, and Titans aren’t striking much fear in me.

I have the Bears heading into the 3rd quarter with a 7-1 or 6-2 record. In either scenario, 6+ wins will likely be enough to have the NFC North lead at the midway point of the season.

But no matter how good the Bears play over the rest of the first half of the season, the 3rd quarter will prove to be their toughest test. The Houston Texans,San Francisco 49ers, and Seattle Seahawks all rank in the top 6 in the NFL in overall defense, and the Viking’s Adrian Peterson loves to feast on the Bears.

But with 3 of these 4 games coming at home, I think the Bears have a few tricks up their sleeve that may lead to a surprise in the standings when the 3rd quarter is said and done.

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Green Bay Packers jobbed by the replacement refs in Seattle

Not one call, not two calls, not three calls, but four bad calls led to the Seattle Seahawks’ 14-12 upset win over the Green Bay Packers.

None bigger than Russell Wilson’s desperation heave that the Packers’ (1-2) M.D. Jennings seemingly intercepted but was ruled a simultaneous catch and touchdown by the Seahawks’ (2-1) wide receiver Golden Tate.

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Green Bay Packers vs. Seattle Seahawks: Brutally Honest Preview

For the 20th straight season, the Green Bay Packers will make an appearance on Monday Night Football, making the trip to CenturyLink Field to face off with the Seattle Seahawks.

Seattle is a city currently crazed by rookie sensation Russell Wilson, a guy Packers nation should know very well from his time with the state’s second most important football team, the Wisconsin Badgers.

This game won’t be about quarterbacks though, it’s about a couple of defenses coming off top notch performances in week two wins.

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Russell Wilson named Seahawks starting QB; new Doug Flutie?

Former Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Russell Wilson was named the Seattle Seahawks starter by coach Pete Carroll. Not former Packers back up Matt Flynn, not Tarvaris Jackson. And people said RW was too short.

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Seattle Seahawks QB race: Badgers Russell Wilson is in the mix!

russell-wilson

The Seattle Seahawks may be located in the Pacific Northwest, but their quarterback derby certainly has an upper midwest feel to it. Tavaris Jackson was a longtime starter for the Minnesota Vikings, and Matt Flynn set Green Bay Packers passing records in his limited time running the offense.

But the starter might be a guy you saw calling the signals for a dairyland state team on Saturdays instead of Sundays last fall. Wisconsin Badgers BMOC Russell Wilson, who set the record for single season college football passer efficiency in 2011 is very much a factor in the race to be the Seahawks starting quarterback in 2012.

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Badgers continue NFL Assembly Line; 6 more Wisconsin players drafted

bret-bielema

“It speaks volumes. Last year we put more players in the NFL than anyone in college football,” Wisconsin Head Coach Bret Bielema said following the Badgers spring game.

“I thought it was pretty cool this year we had six players through six rounds. Our kids are excited for it, it’s definitely a great pat on the back for our program, I believe we’ll probably have another at least six sign as free agents, so we’ll probably have 12-14 more guys go to the NFL,” he continued.

That’s right Wisconsin had 6 guys taken through six rounds of the NFL Draft on Saturday. One in each round. If only they had a seventh in the seven round- it would have been a perfect seven for seven.

Still 6 for 6 is almost unheard of.

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2012 NFL Draft – Top QB & RB

Quarterbacks

1. Andrew Luck, Stanford (6-4, 234): There’s not much to say about Luck that hasn’t been said. He’s the best quarterback prospect since the man he will be replacing in Indianapolis. [Read more…]

2012 NFL Draft Combine winners and losers: quarterbacks

kirk cousins

It’s combine time, the male version of a swimsuit calendar shoot. But don’t get too high or too low about this stuff. Like my friend Bill Smith says, “beware the workout warrior.” The site of the past Super Bowl, Indianapolis is also hosting the 2012 NFL Draft Scouting Combine. Let’s take a look at who’s draft stock is trading higher and who’s trading lower after the workouts.

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Wisconsin Badgers Head Coach Bo Ryan Blasts NCAA Transfer Rule

bo ryan wisconsin

Under NCAA rules, a college athlete who receives his undergraduate degree but still has a year of eligibility remaining can transfer to another school and play right away rather than sit out a year which other transfers must do.  This exception became a focal point in the national media when St. Joseph’s would not release center Todd O’Brien from his scholarship so that he could pursue his graduate degree and play out his final year of eligibility at UAB.

Big Ten teams Michigan State and Illinois have benefited from this rule this season.  The Spartans starting shooting guard Brandon Wood transferred in from Valparaiso under these guidelines, so did Illini point guard Sam Maniscalco who left Bradley and provided Bruce Weber with a much needed, experienced floor leader. 

Wisconsin Badgers head coach Bo Ryan is vehemently against this rule though.  He had quite the rant on the topic when speaking to the media on Monday, describing it as “a terrible rule” and “one of the worst rules I’ve ever seen.”

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