Archive for March, 2020

I get stuck in these patterns of safe behavior. Loops that feel comfortable and predictable, but that steer me away from making “growth” choices. I’ll poke my head out and bump it on some new experience, and feel and think: “never again.”

I occasionally get faced with the reality of my own mistakes, seeing how peers, friends, coworkers have progressed in their lives while I seem to have frozen in time. A student I graduated high school with is now the Vice President of some large-ish company. Another is a lawyer. A young man I went to elementary school with has a PhD and makes silly money selling e-books and online classes he teaches. I know we’re not supposed to compare ourselves to others, but I still do.

I used to blame my parents, or think I was BORN this way of getting stuck or complacent. There may be a little truth to that thinking, but ultimately no one else but me controls me.

Thinking about my wins feels enormously empty when compared to my previous, grandiose plans. There is some line between self-hating narcissism and holding high expectations for oneself. I do the prior or both while convincing myself my self-talk is essential to push myself forward.

Sometimes, and I am not proud of this, I allow my problems to harm others. This is almost always friends, family members, sometimes a coworker.  Typically I just don’t text, email or call back. An innocuous enough inaction, I convince myself. People ignore my communications all the time. But when I care enough about what that person thinks, it hurts. I expect to be ignored, but that’s not how normal people are. Normal, healthy people don’t expect or want to be ignored. It likely makes them angry or sad.

I can remember several occasions I would be talking with a friend who kept in regular contact with a family member, parent, or all their family members. I kept thinking: “That’s just not how my family is. We talk once in a while, not all the time.” But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that’s how I am. I don’t like receiving criticism, so I don’t share with people what’s going on in my life. Many of my life plans, from teenage-hood up through today, I don’t actually follow through on, and people I would share my plans with would understandably want to know what happened with: “that job” or “I thought you were going to school for an MBA” or “I thought you were moving out finally” or “I thought you said you were going to eat healthy.” This is a way that I have very much not grown up at all.

Most of my problems I feel I know the answer to solving, but struggle to force myself to act towards those answers.

I think I’m finally starting to fall asleep. (3:24 am)

Not everything’s been bad. I didn’t get married and lock myself in a nightmare divorce scenario. I don’t have any terminal illnesses. I’m not dead. I’ve just always thought too much, which has been my safety net and (a) great weakness.

I’ve started to watch myself, almost like in third person. I end up with thoughts like: “Dave needs to have some carbs or he gets REAL hungry.” “If Dave doesn’t go to the gym, he is going to lose it.” I feel this helps me reason or negotiate with my caveman brain, instead of just shouting orders and watching as I ignore them.

I’m signing off. Talk to your friends. Be willing to annoy them. Don’t be like me. They’ll deal with it.

Song of the post – Organs, by Of Monsters and Men

Late round/UDFA Quarterback prospects who could become the GUY –

(Leaving out Jalen Hurts, Jake Fromm, Anthony Gordon as likely already drafted passers)

Arizona, Khalil Tate – Dual threat, high ceiling quarterback out of Arizona. Tate’s best work came in his sophomore year, rushing for over a thousand yards and getting 10+ passing TD’s and 10+ rushing TD’s. Tate has arm strength, athleticism, and has shown he CAN perform at a high level. I feel he would best fit somewhere he can learn fundamentals, Seattle behind Russell Wilson, Philly with Doug Pederson and Carson Wentz, or San Francisco with Kyle Shanahan. Tate did not get an invite to the combine so he may go undrafted as teams are struggling to meet with players and run physicals at this time.

Iowa, Nate Stanley – Stanley received some early round draft hype coming out of the 2018 college season, but he returned to school for his senior year, and didn’t repeat at the same level. Stanley’s got desirable height at 6’4″, so a more old school GM like Giants GM Dave Gettleman or Bengals GM Mike Brown might appreciate what Stanley brings as a “pocket passer” as opposed to Tate who competes as a dual threat passer. Stanley, by and large, showed he can keep his turnovers low while maximizing his “deep ball accuracy” (Zierlein) throughout his career at Iowa. Parcells has worked with Cleveland in recent years, and Stanley’s alignment with the “Parcells rules” for drafting QBs (Senior, 30 starts, 23 wins, graduated, 2-1 TD/INT ratio) might influence Cleveland to look at Stanley as a late round passer.

North Texas, Mason Fine – Fine reminds me a lot of Case Keenum, a super prolific passer with ALL of the starts, and is a little shorter (5’11”) than many GMs like. Fine started his first game at North Texas when Obama was still in office. Fine’s YPA never flew off the board (avg. 7.6), but he was consistently an accurate passer and is used to a pass-heavy workload. A team like Arizona (already used to a below 6ft. passer) who passes at a high volume could see Fine as a fit for their offense (as a backup). The Texans could also fit, who’ve collected a group of reliable quick pass receivers (Duke Johnson, David Johnson, Darren Fells Randall Cobb, Kenny Stills) that could help local passer Fine adjust to an NFL offense.

Utah, Tyler Huntley – Huntley’s body of work at Utah showed a very low volume, ultra-efficient passer. Huntley led the Utes to an 11-3 campaign losing out to Oregon narrowly missing out on the CFB Playoffs. Huntley completed over 70 percent of his passes, 10+ yards per attempt with only 4 interceptions against 19 passing TDs (5 rushing). Huntley only thew 301 passes in 2019, suggesting he may be a good fit for a run first offense like Tennessee or Buffalo. I see traces of Alex Smith in Huntley: very risk averse, athletic, and takes what the defense gives him.

Hawaii, Cole McDonald – I don’t typically love system guys like McDonald, but Mahomes went to Texas Tech, the ultimate ‘system’ school, so I’m trying to work around my own biases. McDonald has a big arm, he’s pretty accurate, and he even had an impressive 40 time of 4.58 at the combine. McDonald is definitely used to a pass heavy system like the Chiefs, Rams, or Eagles have, 3+ receiver set offenses would tailor to his comfort zone more than a traditional NFL offense would. McDonald struggled mightily against pressure so he would likely need an already great offensive line/quick pass scheme to be effective.

The Patriot Way can’t be copied 

New Eagle corner Darius Slay said he lost respect of Lions coach Matt Patricia when Patricia told Slay he was “good, not elite.” I can certainly appreciate that the competitive nature of a professional athlete will cause them to bristle at the notion that they are “good” instead of “elite.” Patricia comes from an environment where the head coach (Belichick) routinely shreds their Hall of Fame, actual G.O.A.T. QB on a regular basis, and in front of everyone. So his calling Slay ‘good’ is pretty tame by comparison. Belichick has the leverage to continue to coach like this because Brady has simply put up with it for so long, and the leader of the Patriot way continues to win Super Bowls, and is himself the GOAT of coaches. Patricia and Texans coach B.O.B. are not the GOAT of coaches. They have won zero superbowls as head coaches. And their quarterbacks are younger men who are not used to/wont put up with the old-school hyper critical borderline toxic/actually toxic treatment that football coaches have been shouting out to their athletes for decades all across the country at every level of play. Some people (including myself some times) criticize this younger generation of players for being soft, but a lot of problems that went unaddressed in society are linked to unquestioned facets of society like “the football coach just yells all the time, that’s the way it is.” This change may show us young athletes who don’t respond to criticism with as thick skin as maybe fans are used to, but maybe we’ll be healthier as a society if we acknowledge how this type of behavior gets into the subconscious and try to be a little more human. Like most changes in society, it seems to be more of a trade off rather than an “only good” or an “only bad” change. In my millennial brain, I see it as a “more good than bad” change. Not that I know anything, I just had too much caffeine and needed to write something.

Song of the blog post is G-Eazy’s “Everything will be okay

Cincinnati – Joe Burrow, LSU quarterback. The Bengals would probably trade out of here for, say, four first round picks, but they wouldn’t draft any one else here.

Washington – Chase Young, Ohio State defensive end. While I won’t rule out Washington drafting Tua Tagovailoa. I think Chase still has the majority vote here, Haskins is largely unknown, and Tua remains a risk with his injury.

Detroit – Isaiah Simmons, Clemson Safety/Linebacker. Simmons’ stock jumped sky high from his combine performance. Okudah makes a lot of sense here, drawing comparisons to Patriot star corner Stephon Gilmore, a corner Matt Patricia is very familiar with. I have to believe Simmons, the linebacker/safety hybrid, will be viewed as the “better overall player” and Quinn/Patricia will want Simmons. I personally think Detroit should draft Tua, but I’ve heard very little about that being a real possibility.

NY Giants – Mekhi Becton, Louisville Offensive tackle. Becton is the biggest offensive tackle I can remember in the draft. Heavier than Jonathan Ogden, Leonard Davis, Orlando Brown, and he ran a very impressive 5.10 40 time. Gettleman has been pretty vocal about establishing the run, and Becton is this year’s Jawaan Taylor (run blocking tackle) except without the injury concerns.

Miami – Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama quarterback. His medical’s checked out since the injury. And he’s the best quarterback in the class.

LA Chargers – Jordan Love, Utah State quarterback. Love looks like a better fit for LA than Herbert.

Carolina – Jeffrey Okudah, Ohio State cornerback. The Panthers may opt to tank in ’20 for Trevor Lawrence. Recently signed Teddy Bridgewater has an out in his contract after the 2021 season. Okudah is the best corner in the draft and the Panthers would be silly to not draft him.

Arizona – Jedrick Wills, Alabama offensive tackle. Trading for DeAndre Hopkins allows Arizona to address a badly suffering offensive line group. Wills is a technician who thrived at Alabama.

Jacksonville – Derrick Brown, Auburn defensive tackle. Brown would’ve been a first rounder in 2018, but he returned to school to finish his senior year.  Brown is a force against the run and as a pass rusher. This is a ‘best player available’ pick here, Jacksonville can line him up next to Marcell Dareus and Josh Allen/Yannick Ngakoue. Kristian Fulton or Tristan Wirfs could also go here.

Cleveland – Andrew Thomas, Georgia offensive tackle. Thomas has experience starting at left tackle, and crushed defenders as a run blocker and pass protector. The acquisition of Jack Conklin who played Right tackle in Tennessee allows Cleveland to quickly turn an area of weakness into a strength at Tackle.

NY Jets – Tristan Wirfs, Iowa offensive tackle. Wirfs showed up at the combine with a 40 in the 4.8 range and already had a reputation for his crazy impressive strength. Wirfs can play guard or tackle in year one and brings badly needed blocking to a struggling NY Jets offense.

Las Vegas – Jerry Jeudy, Alabama wide receiver. The Raiders have the worst wide receiver group in football. Jeudy is the best (according to some) wide receiver in the draft class.

San Francisco – CeeDee Lamb, Oklahoma wide receiver. The 49ers as of yet haven’t resigned their best wideout from 2019, Emmanuel Sanders. In either case, drafting Lamb is in the interest of their club and winning for seasons to come. Lamb averaged over 20 yards a catch in his 2019 campaign.

Tampa Bay – Javon Kinlaw, South Carolina defensive tackle. Kinlaw had a strong senior bowl performance and a strong 2019 in general. Kinlaw is maybe the best player available at this slot. Kinlaw smoothly fits in where Ndamukong Suh lined up.

Denver – C.J. Henderson, Florida cornerback. The Broncos added A.J. Bouye but lost Chris Harris. Henderson’s stock has risen since the end of the college season, and teams really need 5 starting caliber defensive backs.

Atlanta – A.J. Epenesa, Iowa defensive end. Death, taxes, and the Falcons need a pass rusher: the only three constants in the universe. Epenesa is not a high ceiling edge rusher, but effective in the run game and as a pass rusher, Epenesa forced 4 fumbles in 2019, demonstrating his playmaker skills.

Dallas – Xavier McKinney, Alabama safety. McKinney was a reliable safety at college football’s talent factory, Alabama. He can start as a nickel or at safety if needs be.

Miami – Josh Jones, Houston offensive tackle. Miami needs serious help in the front five. Jones showed up well at the senior bowl and is expected to be a first round pick.

Las Vegas – Kristian Fulton, LSU cornerback. The Raiders will need to replace some key assets in the secondary, losing Karl Joseph and Daryl Worley. It’s obvious Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock pay close attention to the championship game, where Fulton allowed zero receiving touchdowns. Fulton has allowed a completion rate of 40% since 2018.

Jacksonville – Denzel Mims, Baylor wide receiver. Mims showed at the senior bowl he’s not a one trick pony. He’s got height, he’s got speed, he can run a route tree, the Jaguars could really use wide receiver outside of D.J. Chark to catch passes.

Philadelphia – Grant Delpit, LSU Safety. Delpit is maybe the best safety in this draft class. The Eagles need serious help at wide receiver and defensive back. Delpit would be a value pick at 21 who the Eagles desperately need. The Eagles could also draft yet another wide receiver, Tee Higgins or Michael Pittman.

Minnesota – Henry Ruggs, Alabama wide receiver. The Vikings will want to replace Stefon Diggs, and really need defensive back help. Ruggs is a BURNER who likely won’t fall this far.

New England – Justin Herbert, Oregon quarterback. Herbert won’t be available here, but the Patriots will draft him if he is. Herbert has a lot of raw potential Bill and Nick Caserio will find intriguing. If Herbert isn’t here, they could target Jacob Eason or trade back and draft Jake Fromm.

New Orleans – Laviska Shenault, Colorado WR. Michael Thomas is the only receiving threat on this roster. Shenault specializes in gadget, quick pass plays the Saints have been running with Brees at 40+ years old.

Minnesota – A.J. Terrell, Clemson cornerback. Terrell is one of the draft’s bigger-bodied corners and ran an impressive 4.42 40 time. While he can struggle against big receivers, Terrell’s used to big-time games (like the 2019 national title), Terrell will likely be thrust into a starting role immediately given the Vikings need and should be able to keep up with division standouts like Kenny Golladay, Allen Robinson, and Davante Adams.

Miami – Trevon Diggs, Alabama cornerback. Standing at 6’2″, Diggs can hang with the league’s bigger receivers better than most. Lance Zierlein compared Diggs to Aqib Talib, who made his name as a tight end buster, and was a damn good corner for his whole career. Diggs performed well in his combine drills. Miami has two starting corners in Byron Jones and Xavien Howard and can use Diggs as a nickel.

Seattle – Curtis Weaver, Boise State defensive end. Weaver is the anti-D.K. Metcalf, who carries some bad weight but puts up consistently impressive numbers. The Seahawks look like they will lose Ziggy Ansah and Jadeveon Clowney, two starting outside defenders from 2019. Weaver is semi-local, Boise, Idaho being not TOO far from Seattle (as far as the north west goes.)

Baltimore – Kenneth Murray, Oklahoma linebacker. Murray was all over the field at Oklahoma. The Ravens added Calais Campbell for a late round pick, but really need help at linebacker. Murray has shown versatility in coverage, run defense and occasionally as a pass rusher.

Tennessee – Jeff Gladney, TCU cornerback. The Titans have some holes to plug on defense. Gladney’s an aggressive tackler and not shy about corner blitz assignments. The Titans lose Logan Ryan and Tramaine Brock this offseason.

Green Bay – Tee Higgins, Clemson wide receiver. The Packers have built a strong defense, and Aaron Rodgers desperately needs a receiver to throw to when Davante Adams is triple covered. Higgins’ ceiling is sky high. The Packers could also look at a tight end like Harrison Bryant or Cole Kmet.

San Francisco – Jeremy Chinn, Southern Illinois safety. Chinn was one of the fastest people at the combine, is 6’3″, and bench pressed 20 reps of 225. HE WEIGHS IN AT 220+. This is a small school Derwin James. The 49ers were getting burned not only by Tyreek Hill, but Sammy Watkins who is not an in demand wide receiver at this time.

Kansas City – Zack Baun, Wisconsin linebacker. The Chiefs suck at linebacker. Baun can rush the passer, but is effective at staying home and stopping the run as well.

Song of today’s blog is the new Onerepublic single

I can’t post pictures, they’re all copyrighted :(. (Here are some highlights courtesy of

Cunningham took over at QB for the injured Jawon Pass, and while he’s demonstrated some scrambling ability, Cunningham chucks the ball for over ELEVEN AND A HALF yards per attempt. That’s more than Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa, and Trevor Lawrence threw for last season. The interesting thing about this is Cunningham’s completion percentage was kind of low at 62.6%, which means his passes at 11.5 YPA were even deeper downfield than a Burrow or Tagovailoa who achieved 11+ yards per attempt at 70+% completion.

Here are some key stats for Cunningham in 2019:

62.6% completion percentage, 2065 yards passing, 11.5 yards per attempt, 22 (passing) TDs, 5 INTs, 122 carries, 482 yards rushing, 4.0 yards per carry, 6 TDs (rushing). 5 fumbles, 3 lost fumbles.

Cunningham did not throw as many passes as other QBs, we don’t know what Cunningham’s play will look like over a full season of games and starts. Cunningham had some ups and downs. Not every game was perfect. He played against Clemson (a stacked future NFL defense) and looked pretty bad in his limited work. Against Clemson, Cunningham threw eleven passes, completed four of them, and threw one interception (no TDs). Clearly his game has room for improvement against elite defenses.

Cunningham’s best game (in my opinion) came in Louisville’s bowl game against Mississippi State. Against Mississippi State, Cunningham played against NFL talent like Willie Gay Jr. (LB), Chauncey Rivers (DL) and Kobe Jones (DL). Cunningham went 16/23 for 279 yards, 2 TDs, 16 carries for 81 yards rushing. Cunningham did a great job of scrambling (5 yards per carry), tossed the ball consistently deep down field (12+ Yards Per Attempt). Trying to weed out Cunningham’s target share has been infuriatingly difficult as Louisville often starts Cunningham with another QB in the same game.

I know stats are boring, but they tell us a story of a young QB who can absolutely SLING it without tons of NFL talent in his receiving corps, whereas hotshot quarterbacks like Burrow, and Tagovailoa have NFL caliber receivers to throw to. Cunningham will be draft eligible in 2021, teams may be more willing to look at Louisville as a QB school with the success of Lamar Jackson with Baltimore. Cunningham’s name joins a growing list of names like Jamie Newman, Spencer Rattler, and Tyler Shough who could really take off in 2020 with new opportunities at Georgia, Oklahoma, and Oregon.

Song of the day is “Moon” by Kid Francescoli.