The Utter Non-Parity of the AFC’s Past Two Decades

Occasionally, there may be some fun football facts that cross my mind that I feel deserve a quick mention somewhere.  Here are some that have been in my head for a while, and that I finally took the time to investigate further.

That, as the title suggests, is how top heavy the AFC has been for the past 20 seasons.  During that time, just five teams (about one third of the conference) have dominated.  Good news, the Broncos are one of those teams!  The other four are the Steelers, Patriots, Ravens, and Colts.

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Midweek Musings: Last Thoughts Before Training Camp

Hey, Bronco fans. Training camp is just around the corner and I’m sure everyone is excited. I’ll keep my thoughts brief this week because most of the items that everyone is talking about are subjects we’ve gone over several times.

1. As I mentioned earlier, it doesn’t hurt to bring in Jake Long to see if he’s healthy and can contribute, but I would be careful not to get my hopes up. I can’t see the Broncos offering anything more than a $2M deal loaded with incentives, likely based on how many games he starts, and who knows what another team might offer if they think he can help. Ideally, he’d be healthy, willing to sign and can fill in at left tackle for a year while Ty Sambrailo develops. But I’m not counting heavily on that.
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Jake Long to Visit With Broncos

Former Dolphins and Rams offensive tackle Jake Long is set to visit the Broncos this week.

The report first came from Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News, after Long finished a visit with the New York Giants. Vacchiano reported that Long was also set to visit Atlanta.

Why didn’t the Broncos do this earlier? Based on Vacchiano’s report, it was because teams weren’t convinced Long had fully recovered from his latest injury last October. Keep in mind that Long has twice torn the ACL in his right knee in the past two seasons, so it isn’t a sure thing that he’d be an upgrade over current Bronco linemen.

ETA: Andrew Mason has a friendly reminder.

It certainly doesn’t hurt to have Long visit, though.

PFF: Tap The Brakes On The Derek Carr Hype

There seems to be a growing consensus among league observers that the Raiders have finally found a quarterback in Derek Carr, recently furthered by an article by Mike Sando in which he culled league observer opinions to place Carr as the league’s 20th best QB. However, PFF says, not so fast, my friend:

There were certainly things to like about Carr’s rookie season, including his performance in Oakland’s 24-13 win over the 49ers, and his effectiveness on intermediate throws throughout the year. But overall, his body of work lagged well behind the rest of the league, and he ranked No. 38 out of 39 qualifying QBs in our grading system (only the Jaguars’ Blake Bortles graded out lower).

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Pro Football HOF Needs To Change A Bad Policy

Earlier today, I shared the news that the family of Junior Seau will not get to speak at the Pro Football Hall of Fame cermonies that take place in about two weeks.

I did mention that this would not be the first time a player inducted posthumously will not have anyone speak on his behalf, as this applied to Los Angeles Rams guard Les Richter in 2011.

However, as Mike Florio notes, this policy about players who are inducted posthumously not having anyone give a speech on their behalf was first implemented in 2010, so it hasn’t been around for long. The policy came about after Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Derrick Thomas was inducted posthumously, and both former Chiefs general manager Carl Peterson and Derrick’s son Derrion Thomas spoke on Derrick’s behalf.
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Seau’s Family Won’t Get to Speak at His HOF Induction

The New York Times reported that Junior Seau’s family will not be allowed to speak during his Hall of Fame induction ceremony Aug. 8.

According to the Times, Seau had told others that he wanted his daughter Sydney to introduce him. Now she won’t get that opportunity, even though she told the Times she doesn’t plan to talk about the traumatic brain injuries he suffered.

“It’s frustrating because the induction is for my father and for the other players, but then to not be able to speak, it’s painful,” Sydney said. “I just want to give the speech he would have given. It wasn’t going to be about this mess. My speech was solely about him.”

It’s not the first time a deceased inductee didn’t have somebody speak for him (the Times story mentions nobody spoke for 2011 inductee Les Richter).

But in this instance, it sure comes off as the NFL trying to avoid drawing attention to what happened to Seau, especially with the family filing a lawsuit against the league.

Derek Wolfe Suspended 4 Games For PED Violation

Easy come, easy go on the suspension front.

The NFLPA released this statement on behalf of Wolfe:

Please allow me to offer my most sincere apology to everyone in the Broncos organization, and especially to my teammates and our fans. During the off-season I took a medication which is on the banned substance list.  The medication is not a substance which would enhance my on-field performance in any way, and I genuinely was unaware that it was prohibited, but players are responsible for what is in their bodies. I will certainly exercise far greater caution in the future and will seek advice relating to the permissibility of any and all medications. I’m very disappointed that I can’t help my team for the first four weeks of the season, but I look forward to a great season with the Broncos and can’t wait to get back on the field in week five.

Chiefs’ Sean Smith Suspended First 3 Games, Which Includes A Broncos Game

The Broncos drew some bad scheduling luck by having to travel to Arrowhead in Week 2 with only four days of rest.  This should help ease some of that pain.  And hey, maybe Marcus Cooper won’t get picked on so much this time because Peyton Manning can now even out who he picks on.  Also, who do the Chiefs get in Week 3?  A trip to Lambeau to face Aaron Rodgers.