2018 NFL Draft Caps

Image result for nfl draft

Every April, NFL and NCAAF fans experience the excitement that is the NFL Draft.

College football fans can’t wait to see how many players will get drafted from their favorite university, who those players will be, when those players will get drafted, and where those players will go.

NFL fans can’t wait to see who’s got next for their favorite franchise. Fans of teams with the highest draft picks are hoping for a franchise QB that will lead their team to the playoffs and the Super Bowl for a decade and a half (or longer), and fans of teams with lower draft picks are hoping for that one perfect pick that fills the hole that would prevent them from continuing and building upon their success from the previous season.

New League Year’s Day is in March but in the football world, Christmas comes after that, in late April and early May, in the form of the NFL Draft.

It’s important to remember family during the holiday season, and in the case of Football Christmas, that family is your team: the players, the coaches, the owner(s), the trainers, the food vendors, and of course, your fellow fans.

Just like traditional Christmas, Football Christmas wouldn’t be complete without commercialization…I mean, uh…wonderful presents that embody the true meaning of Christmas 😉 Obviously, draft picks are the presents to which all of us football fans look forward to the most:

  • Most of them will turn out to be those crappy toys that break within five minutes of you taking them out of the box (draft busts). Bummer. But…
  • A small number of them will be worthwhile. Maybe you’ll get an average starter-level player that hangs around for 10 years; Those are the toys that aren’t our favorites. They weren’t THE item on our list, but they are last for long enough and are just enjoyable enough that we grow to appreciate them. Maybe they’ll even get a Pro Bowl nod or two?
  • Then an even smaller number of them are the quality players; These still weren’t THE gift on our list, but we definitely wanted them and are pleased the moment we open them. They are the toys we play with on a regular basis, but not every day. They’ll likely get several Pro Bowl nods and maybe even a spot on an All-Pro team.
  • Then, the most rare of all: THE gift. This isn’t just the top toy we wanted this year, it’s the top toy we’ve wanted the last FIVE years. Not only do we play with these toys everyday, but we can hardly go anywhere without them: The Hall of Famers. These are your franchise QBs like Peyton Manning, Dan Marino, and Tom Brady. These are your electrifying offensive players like Jerry Rice, Barry Sanders, and Shannon Sharpe. These are your game-altering defenders like Lawrence Taylor, Ray Lewis, and Rod Woodson. They’ll make the Pro Bowl almost every year (if not literally every year) and they’ll also make multiple All-Pro teams. Maybe they’ll even win a MVP award?

Yes, toys are awesome. But, sometimes you get stuck with clothes. Well, I’m here to tell you that in the case of Football Christmas, clothes can actually be a little exciting. I’m talking about the annual NFL Draft Caps brought to fans (and to draftees) by New Era. (For the record, I’m not sponsored by them or anything, I just happen to be a big fan of their quality. I don’t recall ever having gotten a New Era cap that I didn’t enjoy.) The 2018 NFL Draft Caps were just recently revealed and well, they deserve to be talked about.

This year’s theme: Team Mottos. Below are some of my favorites and least favorites. If you want to get one for yourself or check out ones that I do not mention, you can find all of them here.

Image result for new york giants

Favorites

  1. New York Giants: “Big Blue”- Obviously,  I had to mention my team’s hat. “Big Blue” is a nickname the Giants have had for ages and I think it looks great on a hat.
  2. New York Jets: “J-E-T-S”- Not even leaving the same stadium from the last one on my list, I love the Jets hat. The motto is their team’s chant. It’s not exactly the most original chant, but it’s a classic.
  3. Seattle Seahawks: “We are 12”- I like this one a lot because the hat features the 12 flag as part of the slogan. The Seahawks are the only team to use something besides words and their team logo in their Draft Cap’s design.
  4. Cleveland Browns: “Dawg Pound”- Another classic slogan makes my list. Also, aside from their logo, this hat is devoid of that ugly orange team color.
  5. Chicago Bears: “Monsters of the Midway”- Though the team has recently lacked the ability to incite fear that is usually associated with monsters, it’s another classic slogan.
  6. Buffalo Bills: “Billieve”- The greatness of the play on the word believe is just the tip of the iceberg when you consider the fact that the “bill” is actually a physical part of the hat. This one actually made me laugh.

Image result for pittsburgh steelers

Least Favorites

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers: “Steel City”- Yes, Pittsburgh is the Steel City, but the Steelers are the Steel Curtain. C’mon New Era!
  2. Miami Dolphins: “Go Phins”- The Jets hat lacks originality in a fun way. The Dolphins hat lacks originality in a boring way.
  3. New England Patriots: “Do Your Job”- I can hear these words coming out of Coach Bill Belichick‘s mouth, but that doesn’t make them fun or interesting to put on a hat unless there is a likeness to Belichick right next to them, which (SPOILER ALERT!), there is not.
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars: “Black and Teal”- Congratulations, you can name colors.
  5. Arizona Cardinals: “Rise Up Red Sea”- So, they stole the Atlanta Falcons “Rise Up” slogan, and decided that stealing wasn’t bad enough, they should also make it sound dumber.
  6. Houston Texans: “We Are Texans”- I am human. I don’t think I need to put that on a hat to make that true.
Advertisements

New England Patri-OUT: Rob Ninkovich Retirement

 

Image result for rob ninkovich

For those of you who are like me in that you are sick of seeing the New England Patriots win, you’ll be happy to hear that they are suffering a setback today (don’t worry Patriots fans, I’m sure HC Bill Belichick will find a way because he always does):

Pats LB Rob Ninkovich announced his retirement from the NFL today, smack in the middle of training camp. Ninkovich, by way of Purdue University, spent 11 seasons in the NFL (New England Patriots [8], Miami Dolphins [1.5], New Orleans Saints [1.5]) accruing 460 tackles, 46 sacks, 5 interceptions, 10 forced fumbles, and a defensive touchdown. Ninkovich was drafted by the Saints with the 135th overall pick (5th round) of the 2006 NFL Draft.

Ninkovich is expected to be replaced by sophomore LB Elandon Roberts, by way of the University of Houston, who accrued 45 tackles and a forced fumble in his rookie season. Roberts was drafted by the Patriots with the 214th overall pick (6th round) of the 2016 NFL Draft.

Super Bowl LI

I really can’t start anywhere but the Super Bowl. Super Bowl LI. The first overtime Super Bowl which was, admittedly, shocking considering how terrible most of this postseason’s playoff games were. The New England Patriots came away with a 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. I knew the New England Patriots would win because they just always find away. I had that sinking feeling in my heart the whole time. I was also right about WHY the New England Patriots would win: the Atlanta Falcons’ lackluster defensive secondary. The New England Patriots were held to just 3 points in the first half because the Atlanta Falcons pass rushers were getting to QB Tom Brady before he could make good throws against the porous secondary. Unfortunately, those pass rushers were too tired after the stellar first half to maintain the same level of play in the second half, and Tom Brady carved up the Atlanta Falcons secondary. That said, props to Atlanta Falcons CB Robert Alford, who played admirably without starting CB Desmond Trufant (he even had a pick six!). Robert Alford was the ONLY member of the Atlanta Falcons secondary that came to play.  OK, S Keanu Neal wasn’t called out too much, but CB Jalen Collins did NOT come to play, and CB Brian Poole had what was probably (in the nicest terms possible) the worst performance of any member of any defensive secondary that I have EVER seen in the Super Bowl. Brian Poole had multiple holding calls against him, and he was also burned by the likes of WRs Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, and Malcolm Mitchell, repeatedly throughout the game. New England Patriots QB Tom Brady set two records: most passing yards in a Super Bowl (466) and most Super Bowls won by a QB (5). New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick also set the record for most Super Bowl wins as a head coach (5). The Atlanta Falcons also had their ONLY turnover of this postseason with QB Matt Ryan‘s fumble. In conclusion, Super Bowl LI was proof that the good guys lose (Atlanta Falcons) and the bad guys win (New England Patriots).

Image result for lombardi trophy

Two other brief Super Bowl notes:

  1. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell could not wait to get off the podium during the Lombardi trophy presentation. The battles between Roger Goodell and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft (and QB Tom Brady) have been well documented with the cheating scandals that the Patriots always seem to be facing. Roger Goodell left the trophy stage IMMEDIATELY after handing the trophy to Robert Kraft. LOL. Oh, and Robert Kraft took a jab at the whole ‘Deflategate’ situation, too.
  2. The Super Bowl commercials continue to get weaker every year. I honestly can’t really remember any of the commercials from this Super Bowl. 😦

That’s all for TheHaysWay today, make sure to leave a comment with your thoughts on Super Bowl LI and/or on the New England Patriots and/or on the Atlanta Falcons and/or on whatever else is related to the Super Bowl and/or on whatever is on your mind, along with a much-appreciated like. If you are not yet a follower, become a follower to support the feeling of being REALLY tired of seeing the Patriots win CONSTANTLY. Have a pleasant tomorrow.

An Unexpected Journey, Music in Science, and Multiple Football Stories!

Say what you will about life, it never ceases to surprise. For example, you might think Chick-Fil-A is colossally overrated. But, that doesn’t stop you from making a half-hour trek to the nearest one for free 8-piece chicken nuggets. (By the way, if you haven’t tried their chocolate chip cookies, you need to. They are dynamite.) Another example, sometimes your ex-girlfriend’s best friend will start hitting on you. And when you turn her down the first time, she turns into a total Star Wars nerd to attempt to impress you and tries again six months later. And even one more example, sometimes the Trail Blazers lose. (OK, that last one really isn’t surprising 😦 Oh well.)

Image result for surprise meme

Anyway, I got this brilliant idea today of incorporating more music into science. Frankly, I think science sucks. It is INSANELY boring, to the point where I had no idea one subject could be so boring. Though, in science’s defense, it really includes a multitude of individual subjects. Seriously, though, what if we could cure diseases with music? Scientists have been looking for elements to cure diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s, but have they tried rhythm as one of those elements? Or major or minor tonalities? This probably sounds ridiculous, but I think they should give it a shot. Music is so powerful on an emotional level already so I don’t see why it can’t also be powerful on a physical level. Plus, that would make science WAY more entertaining.

Image result for science meme

In unrelated news, Madden Mobile got a new update today.

In football news, I read an article about what QB-needy teams should do during the offseason. I didn’t read the specifics because I already know exactly what they should do: Play for the #1 overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft. Seriously, the top trade option at the position is Tony Romo. He’s a solid QB as long as you don’t mind using your backup for the majority of the season and having absolutely no ability to win games that actually matter. I also saw a list of the top QBs in the draft this season. Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer topped the list. You know this draft is doomed when the top option is a guy who led Notre Dame to its worst season in recent memory BY FAR. Also, Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield wasn’t even in the top 5. And Clemson’s DeShaun Watson was #2. AND DESHONE KIZER WAS #1! WHAT THE ABSOLUTE….!!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!!!??!?!?

In other football news, the Green Bay Packers have officially fixed the hole that New York Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr created in their locker room wall. So, no more memes of different people’s faces inside the hole.

Image result for packers locker room hole
OK, One more

Also, I just want to say for the record that the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to be hard-pressed to beat the New England Patriots this weekend with all of the controversy surrounding the events that occurred in their locker room after their Divisional Round game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Between head coach Mike Tomlin’s profanity and WR Antonio Brown’s Facebook live video, the Steelers seem far too distracted to be a Super Bowl team. In fact, I seem to remember things going poorly for a Wild Card team this season that had their WRs distracted by a trip to Miami…

Image result for steelers meme

In contrast to the distracted Steelers, New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick spoke to the media today. One reporter asked him about the importance of home field advantage. “I don’t know, ask Kansas City and Dallas.” HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my gosh, you know, as much as I hate Belichick for saying things like that, I love Belichick for saying things like that. I’m sure the fact that he doesn’t give a **** about so called “advantages” is why he is the greatest head coach of all time. I also admire the fact that he can say things like that with a straight face.

Image result for bill belichick meme

That’s all for TheHaysWay today, make sure to leave a comment on life’s surprises and/or on music in science and/or on football, lots of football, along with a much-appreciated like. If you are not yet a follower, become a follower (you may do so with a Belichick straight face, if you like. Though, I will be smiling, regardless) 🙂 Have a pleasant tomorrow.

Daily Update: June 23, 2016

“Let us sacrifice our today so that our children can have a better tomorrow.” -A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Statesman

So, I’ve been running through The Hunger Games movies for the past three days (yes, I know there are four, I’ll be watching the last one tomorrow), which is why I’ve been putting in scenes from those movies. Frankly, I wanted an excuse to put “The Hanging Tree” into today’s post, and this quote is that excuse. Although I personally feel that Mockingjay: Part 1 is just an extended commercial for Mockingjay: Part 2, my favorite part of the book trilogy-turned-movie quadrilogy is definitely this song. In regard to the quote, I don’t totally agree. While I do agree that it is important to set up a better tomorrow, I don’t believe we need to sacrifice today for that purpose. I live my life by telling myself everyday that this day is going to be the new best day ever. I admit, I don’t always believe myself when I say that, but I ALWAYS say it, and it helps me be a better person because of it. You may be wondering, ‘How do you believe that today will be the best day ever if you ‘know’ that tomorrow will be better?’ It’s not so much that today needs to be the best day ever as it is that today needs to be the best day it can be. Life will not always go our way, in fact, it often doesn’t. But, as long as we believe that each day will get better, it will improve our lives, as well as the lives of the people and the world around us. So let’s continue making this day the new best day ever with some NFL news:

  1. The NFL is partnering with the Cirque du Soleil. This is actually a really interesting story. The partnership is building a theater and interactive exhibit in Times Square. Some features include: NFL films being displayed on a four-story video board and Cirque shows capturing the NFL game day experience. Basically, both organizations are attempting to gain each other’s fan bases to add to their own. I’m not a big fan of the intent, but the concept sounds astounding!

As promised, I have some cool NFL analysis in the event of a lack of NFL news. NFL.com recently released a list of their top 10 non-QBs in the league today, so I have done the same. Take a look:

  1. J.J. Watt, DE, Houston Texans- No surprise here, the three time DPOY, Watt is the heart and soul of the Houston Texans. He is possibly the best defensive player of all time with his abilities to attack QBs, throw the football, and catch the football. He is probably the most diverse player in the NFL.
  2. Odell Beckham Jr, WR, New York Giants- Ok, maybe I’m a little biased, but hear me out. Odell is probably the best WR in the league for multiple reasons. Firstly, he has Eli Manning throwing him the football. Eli definitely has his moments, but he is about as inconsistent as a QB gets. Despite Eli’s inconsistencies, Odell consistently puts up at least 90 yards per game. He doesn’t have the luxury of having a consistent QB like Antonio Brown or Julio Jones. Secondly, the 90 yard per game rule still applied against the best CB of 2016: Josh Norman. Although Norman got in Odell’s head, leading to Odell’s one-game suspension, Odell still torched Norman for over 90 yards in that game. Thirdly, the catch. The best catch of all time. Nobody has hands like Odell.
  3. Bill Belichick, Head Coach, New England Patriots- I never said this list was all players. Belichick has won four Super Bowls for the Pats. Yes, most of his success hinged on a QB in the form of Tom Brady, but Belichick also has a knack for finding amazing WRs out of nowhere. See: Julian Edelman, Wes Welker, and now Chris Hogan (who has been drawing rave reviews from Pats OTAs).
  4. Von Miller, OLB, Denver Broncos- This guy was Super Bowl MVP for a reason. There is NO DOUBT that the Broncos had the best defense of last season, and that is all because of Miller. Sack artist, hard hitter, natural leader. He is a GREAT defensive anchor.
  5. Luke Kuechly, MLB, Carolina Panthers- Kuechly rose to fame almost as fast as Odell did. He is the anchor of the Carolina defense that went 15-1 in the regular season, and went to the Super Bowl. Drafted in 2013, he is already the best at his position, with nobody else within shouting distance.
  6. Chris Harris Jr, CB, Denver Broncos- Perhaps you’ve heard of Aqib Talib? He is a top-10 CB in the league. He also plays CB2 for the Broncos defense. Who is the CB1? Chris Harris Jr. He is better than Aqib Talib, therefore, he is one of the best CBs in the league and, in my opinion, the best right now.
  7. Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers- He has been lucky to play with a top-5 QB and a top-5 running back, but Brown is a freak of nature. He has the speed to take any pass to the house. If you want explosive, the first man you call is Antonio Brown.
  8. Joe Haden, CB, Cleveland Browns- Just barely beat out by Harris, Haden is the lone bright spot on the Browns. No matter how much they lose, Browns fans are still treated to a show by Haden on a weekly basis. That is definitely something to cheer for.
  9. Travis Frederick, C, Dallas Cowboys- Offensive linemen never get enough credit. Remember how RB Darren McFadden looked like an all-star behind the Dallas o-line last year. Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you: the anchor of the league’s best o-line.
  10. Stephen Gostkowski, K, New England Patriots- What better way to end the list than with the guy that completes the team? You can’t have a football team without the kicker. When it comes to a kicker that can win football games for your team, there is nobody I’d rather have than Gostkowski. Don’t let his missed extra point in this season’s AFC Championship fool you, this man can kick.

That’s all for TheHaysWay today, make sure to leave a comment on the daily quote and/or the daily news. Also, I would love to hear your own list of the top 10 non-QBs in the NFL today, as well as your opinion on my list. Please leave a much-appreciated like whether you comment, or not. Have a pleasant tomorrow.