TIOPS INSIDE BUZZ — Rumblings, Musings, Opinions– 1. The Washington Capitals were ousted in Round 1 Wednesday night on a Brock McGinn double overtime goal as an unpredictable 2019 postseason continued. The NHL has always wanted parity with this playoff alignment and they got it this season with all no division winners advancing past Round 1. Washington’s rein comes to an end and as good as a story the Hurricanes are, the NHL loses a great Round 2 storyline of Trotz vs the Capitals. This was just a strange series for the Capitals. To go up 2-0 in the series followed by laying an egg in Games 3 and 4, to then deliver what looked like a knockout punch in Game 5 where it appeared after fives games they were finally taking the Hurricanes seriously, only to drop games 6 and 7 as Carolina roared back to win four ofRead More »
Safety Morgan Burnett, a complete disaster with the Steelers in 2018, agreed to a two year deal with the Cleveland Browns on Friday. The deal reportedly has a max value of $9 million. Burnett, 30, was a major free agent bust in Pittsburgh last season, totaling 30 tackles, 0 sacks, 0 interceptions and 6 pass defensed. When he could actually get on the field this season, Burnett showed he just can’t play anymore. If the Browns are banking on a change of scenery bounce-back season from Burnett in 2019, good luck with that. Burnett prior to officially asking for a release from the Steelers in February, was widely believed to be leaking made up stories to former teammates at the NFL Network about Ben Roethlisberger being a locker room problem.
After declining a 5 year, $70 million contract from the Pittsburgh Steelers, Le’Veon Bell bet on himself by sitting out the 2018 season, foregoing a guaranteed $14.5 million payday. Bell on Wednesday signed a 4 year, $52.5 million contract with the New York Jets and Bell’s market, as expected, never developed to the point that Bell and his agent Adisa Bakari insisted it would. That $17-$18 million a year payday Bell sought wasn’t out there and the market was so small, Bakari was forced to leak to the media of fake interest from teams like the Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs, amongst others, to try to get the Jets to up their offer. Bakari got San Francisco to make a late push but the 49ers offer is believed to have capped out at $40 million over 4 years. Meanwhile, the real numbers of the Bell contract are now tricklingRead More »
Will Le’Veon Bell follow Antonio Brown to the Oakland Raiders? Bell is of course going to follow the money and even after the Brown acquisition, the Raiders have been tabbed as a “sleeper” for Bell, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. Bell enters free agency with an asking price of $18 million per season, something NFL executives feel he has zero shot of getting but time will tell.
Don’t plan the New England Patriots funeral just yet. Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are headed to an eighth straight AFC Championship game. Brady and the Pats throttled the Los Angeles Chargers, 41-28, and this one was over by halftime as the Patriots roared to a 35-7 lead at the half. Brady torched the Chargers, going 33/43 for 343 yards and 1 touchdown. New England did what they wanted on offense, scoring touchdowns on five of their first six drives. Sony Michel starred in the running game with 129 yards, 3 TD’s. Philip Rivers falls to 5-6 in his playoff career. —KC opens up as a 3-point favorite for the AFC title game—
C.J. Anderson couldn’t find work for months, never got a call from the Steelers, and is another example of why you don’t bring out the brink trucks for running backs. Anderson with now three 100 yard rushing games in three games with the Rams, totaled 127 yards and 2 touchdowns in the Rams 30-22 win over the Cowboys. Los Angeles physically punished the Cowboys at the line of scrimmage, en route to the NFC title game.
The AFC Goes through Arrowhead. The Kansas City Chiefs held serve at home with a 31-13 win over the Colts, advancing to the AFC title game. The surprise in this one was how small the Colts offense came up in a dud performance. Andrew Luck had no vertical game through the air, going 19/36 for 203 yards. T.Y. Hilton was a non-factor as the Chiefs were swarming on defense, producing 3 sacks, 1 turnover and allowing just 7 points.
On the cusp of Hue Jackson’s firing, there will be no expanded role for Todd Haley in Cleveland. In fact, there will be no role for Haley in Cleveland. Haley is out as offensive coordinator and has been fired, the NFL network reports. What’s next for Haley? It’s hard to see him getting another shot as an offensive coordinator anytime soon. His stock is going to be as low as it can get around the league. Among the primary reasons is that Haley is an extremely tough person to work with for coaches and only stayed around in Pittsburgh as long as he did because of the Rooney’s.