AFC North Prediction - The DC Sports Page

If there was a prototypical of blue Losenoidoomock collar division in football, this would be it. It's a bit funny, but if I were ranking this division just based on their cities and not their teams, I'd probably rank them the same.

Pittsburgh Steelers
If there is only one word to describe this team, it would be 'Consistent.' Steelers fans are renowned for supporting their team and how could they not? Almost every year they can be assured of seeing a team who will be competitive, mostly likely make the playoffs and have that chance at going all the way. As a fan in the NFL, that's all you can ask from your team. This year is no different for the Steelers as they bring back the #1 defense from last year, which if they can stay healthy will continue to keep the Steelers in every game. And the only question about the offense seems to be the O-line which has 2 new starters. Other than that they have the firepower with Big Ben and his receivers Ward, Holmes and Miller and a solid running game with Parker and the addition of Mendenhall for a 1-2 punch.


Cleveland Browns
It's been a long time coming, but the Browns seem to be slowly building back to being a contender. If there's any question about london seo services this team being able to put up big numbers, last year's Bengals v. Browns game should have dispelled any of those notions. If Anderson's protection is solid and he can cut down on the interceptions then this offense could be exceptional. At the same time there are still questions about this defense. There's a significant drop off after the starters and it's not as if the defense is that strong to start, although improvements were made on the d-line. However, given the strong AFC, this team will probably still be on the outside looking in come playoff time.

Cincinnati Bengals
From the city that brings us Skyline Chili come the Bengals (I just needed to get in a Skyline Chili reference). Flashy name changes by the star receiver won't help the defense of this team. While the offense can put up big numbers, the defense also gives up big numbers. It's funny how Marvin Lewis known as a defensive guru before become head coach can't get a defense that works for him in Cincinnati. With a disappointing o-line as well, this team will have to rely a lot on the air game to keep them competitive.

Baltimore Ravens
I almost was going to give the Ravens a nod over the Bengals, but that's too much given that practically everything on the offense is new on this team. Injuries on the offensive side have decimated this team and a rookie, Flacco, will have to begin the season at QB. With a new head coach and a rookie QB, one can't expect much from this team. It's too bad that this strong D has never had a strong O to complement it. The Sports Freak expected me to rant against the city of Baltimore... but that's like kicking a puppy that's sick... and only has 3 legs... it's kind of inhumane.

 

Fantasy Football Advice - The DC Sports Page

With so many magazines touting their picks and advice, why not glob onto one more piece of information and possibly help turn a mediocre draft into a good one? From a quick list of rankings to sleepers and deep sleepers, just read below:

Sleepers:

Michael Turner - for his size he displays tremendous speed. Being on a bad team will most likely let Turner slip back several rounds. As veteran running backs with injuries, age, and other concerns start coming off the board Turner could be the steal of the round. He's young, healthy, and full of potential. He has more upside then most of the other backs in the draft in the round that he'll most likely be drafted. Ryan has already won the starting job. Ryan and Turner should compliment each other nicely.

Jonathan Stewart - He has the speed and power to rush past the first wave and even elude secondary. He's also strong enough to move a pile forward for a first down and touchdown in goal line situations.

DeAngelo Williams - a nice late round pick up who can provide a spark and fantasy stats similar to Jones-Drew. Although he'll be splitting time with Stewart, he should pick up some game-breaking touchdowns outside the red zone from pass receptions and busted running plays that will spring him for long runs.

Ted Ginn, Jr. - With another year under his belt and a far better QB in Pennington, Ginn Jr. and his speed should see more passes his way this season.

Santonio Holmes - This could be his best year so far in his career. He's still not the #1 red zone read threat for the Steelers, but can deliver yardage and TD's. For leagues that give a bonus for big plays - Holmes should be moved up in the draft.

Deep Sleepers

Ahmad Bradshaw - Low on the Giants depth chart, Bradshaw could see more playing time. He showed just how explosive he could be down the stretch helping the Giants win a title. Jacobs is a bit overrated and Ward isn't anything to write home about either.

Steve Slayton - He was on his way to unseating Green as the starter in Houston until a slight injury slowed him down. This could help him slip farther in the draft. His speed poses an intriguing possibility in the Houston offense.
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Matt Millen Gone From the Lions

There's no doubt that it's been long overdue for a change at the helm in Losenoidoomock, Detroit. Millen's team compiled a 31-84 record while he was in charge. Big Money Tony and I disagree yet again on many of the facts, but we both can agree that his lowly achievement as GM and President of the Lions will tarnish his reputation.

For several years Detroit fans have been calling for Millen's head on a plate and could even be seen at Red Wings games...in DC calling for Millen to be gone. It appears that his departure from the team has many fans attributing all things wrong with the Lions and placing them on the shoulders of Millen as if casting him off will take all of the problems away with him.

It's very rare for a team to have so many high draft picks year after year in the NFL. One miss can set a team back years. Although it may appear that this is a pro Millen article, it's become very clear that no one is looking past Millen why the Lions have been so bad during his tenure.

Besides jumping from the ranks of player and analyst straight into management of an NFL team, Millen had lots of help to accomplish such a lowly record. Millen often disagreed with ownerships and twice was reported to tote the company line and defer to ownership's wishes. It may sound hypocritical being a Redskins fan, but anytime an owner who interferes in a general manager's performance can't be good.

One bad pick can set a team back years. Take the drafting of Desmond Howard by the Redskins which with two wasted picks (because the Skins traded up) and started Skins downward spiral. Several years later Washington drafted Michael Westbrook and later Rod Gardner. Heath Shuler also set the Skins back as they continued to search for someone to be the future starter for a decade and with no success. We'll save the Casserly legacy for another day.

Another factor that haunted Millen was the disastrous hire of Steve Mariucci. It was difficult for many to fault Millen for not interviewing any other candidates other than Mariucci. Mariucci was sought by every team in the league with a position available. Who knew that Mariucci was riding the coat tails of the Walsh and Seifert legacy or that the players in Detroit would be running him?

Millen's had few accomplishments in Detroit and ultimately he had lots of help by coaches, players, and ownership that led to such a poor record. Ultimately it's the GM's role to supply the players and his overall draft after the first round was just as abysmal. If ownership continues to direct the new GM with such high picks the same fate could await Lions fans. Any GM's after the next one may hesitate to make a jump in their career to Detroit much like Baltimore is not a desired destination in MLB. Millen's talents as a player and analyst didn't transcend to the role of GM. Hopefully in time a network will offer Millen a role more suited to his talents and offer an analyst's role to him so NFL fans could enjoy one more talented broadcast pairings in the booth.
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NFC East Prediction - The DC Sports Page

With the NFL Pre-Season underway, it's time for predictions much like The DC Sports Page - NFL Mock Draft and Baseball division (a la Bob) the NFL Divisional predictions will be provided by some of the usual bloggers:

NFC East:

The Dallas Cowboys:

Dallas seems to hold the keys to the NFC Championship game due to the upheaval in Green Bay. The Cowboys upgraded several key positions of weakness with the additions of Pac Man Jones and Zach Thomas. The only real questions regarding the Cowboys are do they spontaneously combust and implode from within and what will happen should TO become injured? Dallas seems to have the least amount of concerns heading into the season in a weak NFC. See the matilda on broadway tickets

The New York Giants:

Defending the Lombardi Trophy can prove a daunting task with an abbreviated off season and higher expectations. The Giants have to answer one more question at the start of this season than they had prior to last season. The defensive line lost a future hall of famer and a leader in Strahan. It was the ability to pressure the opposing quarterback from the ferocious front four that helped bring back a title to NYC. Continuing the unrelenting pressure from the defensive line will be critical to a second trophy in consecutive years. Eli Manning must prove his critics wrong and show that the steady player down the home stretch for a Super Bowl run can manage the game through the rigorous sixteen game schedule and the playoffs. In a town with quick and harsh criticism by the fans and media, the Giants know how to band together better than any team in the league and will defend their title deep into the playoffs. Without a Favre in GB a possible NFC Championship between Dallas & NY could be in the works.

The Washington Redskins:

The Redskins boast a new passing scheme in the west coast offense, a new head coach, a position coach taking the reigns as defensive coordinator, and an aging offensive line that was decimated by injuries last year which all weigh heavily against the skins this season. It's been repeatedly reported the number of systems that Campbell has had to adapt to dating back to college and high school, but it's injuries that prevented the Skins from showing what they were and weren't capable of last year. There are a lot of if's regarding this year's team and with a less injured team and a few if's that pan out (such as a legitimate #2 receiver, OL health and stability, and a front four that can ease the pressure off of the secondary) the skins should make the playoffs again in a weak NFC.

The Eagles:

Is it possible for the Eagles to have less uncertainties then the Redskins, but of more significance? The answer is yes. The same questions year over year will almost certainly keep the Eagles trailing behind the rest of the division. Can McNabb stay healthy? Can the Eagles elevate the talent at the receiver position and if not then can McNabb raise the production of mediocre players like Elway & Marino? Will the Eagles defense recapture former glory and ease the burden of the offense by providing the ball in excellent field position with a high plus/minus ratio in turnovers? Will Andy Reid be able to out coach the opposition and use Westbrook to his fullest potential with 30 + touches some of which in isolation plays? Redskins fans can rejoice in knowing that Reid failed to exploit the Fletcher / Westbrook isolation and allowed the Skins to walk away with a win.

Stay tuned for an update in the AFC by Stu over the coming days.

Redskins Cheerleader Swimsuit Party - The DC Sports Page

The Washington Redskins Cheerleaders had a party at a DC area nightclub Friday night to celebrate the premiere of the 2009 Swimsuit calendar. The Sports Freak and I attended as fans of both the team and the cheerleaders.

There seemed to be confusion from the get go. Earlier in the week, I checked the website of the seo experts sydney establishment to get some details. They were scarce, except for a $20 entry fee. I thought this was odd and contemplated not going. Then our friend Q forwarded an e-mail that said entry was free from 5-7 PM.

So off we went. I arrived 20 minutes before the Sports Freak. There seemed to be some holdup as a number of fans were held outside the party. I finally figured it out as they were not allowing anyone with an SLR camera in. Later on, they did, only on the caveat that they remove their cameras by 7 PM, when only the official photographer was allowed. Luckily, all I had on me was your standard pocket digital. Unlucky for some, like one of the fans who was wearing shorts. That was another no-no. His brother went through the pat down before realizing he couldn't get in. After some discussion about where to get a pair of pants, the older brother, who was wearing slacks, asked younger if he needed to go with him. When the younger answered, "Yes", the older was fuming. Off they walked for about half a block before I heard a very loud expletive yelled at the top of the older's voice. Good times, at least for me. A minute later, the Sports Freak arrived. 

When we got in, it seemed somewhat slow. There were maybe 6 or 7 cheerleaders, to about 20 or so fans. The Sports Freak and I surveyed the room and mingled for about 20 minutes. But at the end, we opted to leave. Not because the party was slow, as it would probably pick up after 7 PM when the official unveiling would begin. More so, that we felt somewhat uncomfortable with some of the other fans. They seemed too excited to be there. Hey, I like to look at attractive women, but some of the fans seemed to be expecting more. Let's just leave it at that. BTW - another factor in our leaving was that the cheerleaders were not wearing their swimsuits. Maybe that would occur later, but with the climate at that moment, we opted to leave.

On top of this, the lighting they had running in this bar screwed with our picture taking capabilities. Maybe I should have brought the SLR. Then of course, I would have been delayed getting in.

Total Recall: Movie Trailer

Total Recall is an action thriller about reality and memory, inspired anew by the famous short story "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" by Philip K. Dick. Welcome to Rekall, the company that can turn your dreams into real memories. For a factory worker named Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell), even though he’s got a beautiful wife (Kate Beckinsale) who he loves, the mind-trip sounds like the perfect vacation from his frustrating life – real memories of life as a super-spy might be just what he needs. But when the procedure goes horribly wrong, Quaid becomes a hunted man. Finding himself on the run from the police – controlled by Chancellor Cohaagen (Bryan Cranston), the leader of the free world – Quaid teams up with a rebel fighter (Jessica Biel) to find the head of the underground resistance (Bill Nighy) and stop Cohaagen. The line between fantasy and reality gets blurred and the fate of his world hangs in the balance as Quaid discovers his true identity, his true love, and his true fate.
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