The Cubs are serving as background noise as I put together this look around the NFL before I head out to pick up some items from the hardware store. Summer is here, which means football is coming.
- The rule allowing for instant replay of pass interference that the New Orleans Saints lobbied for during the offseason has been approved. Here is the latest from the league:
— NFL Football Operations (@NFLFootballOps) June 20, 2019
- I want to applaud the league for being progressive with its rulebook for a change, but my gut tells me this will open up a can of worms the powers that be aren’t ready to take on. The hope is that the kinks would get worked out during the preseason, but that’s tough to bank on. My gut tells me we’ll be re-visiting this rule next winter. In the meantime, you can read up on the rule in its full-blown glory here. Good luck to all officials who need to interpret this rule in the coming year (you’re gonna need it).
- For what it’s worth, I think Rich Eisen nailed it with his assessment of the new rule.
- Even though No. 1 overall pick Kyler Murray is expected to start for the Arizona Cardinals from the get-go, Brett Hundley isn’t ready to play second-fiddle just yet. “For me, my goal has always been to start, no matter what position it’s in,” Hundley said, via NFL.com. “I don’t play to be second.” Hundley is in his fifth year as an NFL backup, and I’m still madly annoyed that his best career game came against the Bears. Then again, that game might go down as the beginning of the end of the John Fox era. So maybe that represents a worthwhile silver lining for Bears fans?
- This is fun: ESPN reports New Jersey’s sportsbook took in more than $318 million in bets last month. Not only is that newsworthy because that’s a ton of money, it’s notable because it’s more than Nevada (a hair more than $317 million) took in during the same time span. It’s the first time any state has brought in more cash than Nevada when it comes to sports betting. And with the NFL season coming soon, that number figures to grow.
- Wake up, Illinois! Your time should be coming soon. And when it does, here’s hoping the Rivers Casino in nearby Des Plaines looks something like this:
We are very proud to introduce you to our NEW Rivers Sportsbook opening this fall! The new Sportsbook will be located in the center of the casino & includes TWO state-of-the-art 50 feet LED screens and TWENTY FOUR 86” flat-screen HD TVs! 🤩
Gambling Problem? Call 1800Gambler pic.twitter.com/Tz6zV7G2Kw
— Rivers Casino Pittsburgh (@WinBigRivers) June 27, 2019
- What’s next for Tyreek Hill? That’s a pretty big question that needs to be answered, but perhaps we’ll get some word in the coming days/weeks/months after the Chiefs receiver recently met with NFL investigators. The league is currently reviewing whether Hill violated its personal conduct policy after allegations of child abuse surfaced in April. Kansas City hasn’t allowed Hill to be with the team during the offseason training program and it’s possible he could be suspended, even if he isn’t facing criminal charges.
- Who’s up for a palate cleanser? Let’s watch Jared Goff and Cooper Kupp torch the Vikings defense:
— NFL (@NFL) June 27, 2019
- What I wouldn’t give for Mitch Trubisky to carve up Minnesota in the same way Goff did last season. Goff threw for 465 yards and five touchdowns in what was a historic night for the Rams star quarterback. To put it in perspective, Trubisky has thrown for 634 passing yards and just 2 touchdowns (3 interceptions) in four games against the Vikings. Time to turn it around, Mitchell. It starts in Week 4! Let’s go!
- Amari Cooper has high hopes for the 2019 season, telling Pro Football Talk he has set a goal to reach 2,000 receiving yards this coming season. No receiver has racked up 2,000 receiving yards in a given year, but it’s not keeping Cooper from shooting for the moon. It’s going to be tough to average the 133.3 yards per game he’ll need to do it in the 15 games he’ll play against teams who aren’t the Bears, who are going to keep him off the board when the two teams meet later this year. (Hey, Cooper isn’t the only one who will be setting unrealistic goals for the season.)
- If you’ve ever wanted to know what it looks like to make long field goals, this 117-second video is for you:
IT'S GOOD! 👟
— NFL (@NFL) June 27, 2019
- Is making field goals even legal in the NFL? I had no idea this was even possible. Someone nudge the Bears and let them know that kicking the ball between the uprights is a perfectly legal play that puts points on the board!
- I know who I’m rooting for here:
Which first year head coach will have more wins in 2019:
Zac Taylor or Matt LaFleur?
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) June 26, 2019
- The Associated Press reports the Raiders will play host to the Rams for a pair of joint practices this summer before the two squads link up for their preseason opener. It’s a little bit of new school vs. old school as upstart Sean McVay leads his Rams against one-time offensive wunderkind Jon Gruden’s Raiders. McVay worked under Jon’s brother Jay in Washington. Wonder if they’ll share stories about the other Gruden brother in between practice whistles.
- A reminder that it’s never too late to right a wrong:
Trump orders policy intended to allow athletes at military academies to immediately pursue pro careers as an option.
His administration in 2017 rescinded a policy that allowed top academy athletes to go straight to the pros upon graduationhttps://t.co/8qYnRhLARv
— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) June 27, 2019