An NFL Preseason Q&A Session Just For You
THE NFL PRESEASON:
IT’S ALREADY Q&A TIME ‘ROUND THE LEAGUE …
COLLEGE FOOTBALL CONFERENCE REPORTS:
IT’S THE PAC-12’S TURN
Okay, so you know the deal:
It’s never wise to “over-react” to what happens in the NFL Preseason (especially in NFL Preseason Week 1) but gotta say there are already some real news items this summer and we’re here to do a little Q&A.
Q: Are the New England Patriots going to trade backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo any time soon after letting him pile up the big-time stats in these exhibition games?
A: Gut feeling is Garoppolo is going nowhere although it’s hard to imagine he’ll stay put for another five years providing Mount Rushmore QB Tom Brady keeps playing at his uber-high level. Undoubtedly you noticed that last week Garoppolo completed 22-of-28 passing tries for 235 yards with two TDs and 0 INTs in New England’s 31-24 home loss to 2.5-point underdog Jacksonville. Now, what would it cost San Francisco or Cleveland in picks/players for Garoppolo? Hmm, good one.
Q: Did the Buffalo Bills push the panic button after scoring only 10 points in their preseason opener last week?
A: Folks, we’re inclined to say “yes” as just one day after the 2.5-point home underdog Bills were beaten 17-10 by the Minnesota Vikings, there was the AFC East team dealing away WR Sammy Watkins to the Los Angeles Rams and top cornerback Ronald Darby to the Philadelphia Eagles.
True, the Bills now own six picks in the first three rounds of next spring’s NFL Draft but it sure seemed to us that following the Preseason Week 1 loss – where Buffalo committed 10 penalties for 106 yards including a pair of 15-yard special teams flags – this new management bunch “starring” head coach Sean McDermott punched the clock on this 2017 season all too soon.
The 2017 NFL Preseason continues to rock-n-roll with Week 2 action beginning on Thursday Night with three games (Buffalo at Philadelphia, Baltimore at Miami and Tampa Bay at Jacksonville) and then we’ll have the remainder of NFL Preseason Week 2 Friday-thru-Monday Night, so make sure you’re all aboard with Jim Hurley’s Network for Sides & Totals winners both here online at www.jimhurley.com and at our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-32304453.
Note the College Football campaign swings into high gear on Saturday, August 26th and so make sure you’re ready to rumble with the college kids too plus there’s lots of Major-League Baseball winners each and every day.
Q: Are the Chicago Bears already regretting the free-agent signing of QB Mike Glennon?
A: Boy, Chicago sports talk shows were sizzling-hot with Bears talk following last Thursday’s 24-17 home loss to 1.5-point underdog Denver. Not only did #1 QB Glennon throw a “pick six” on the third offensive play of the game but he finished up with the following stat line: 2-of-8 passing for 20 yards with a zero QB Rating; meanwhile, rookie QB Mitchell Trubisky completed 18-of-25 passes for 166 yards with a short TD strike to new slot receiver Victor Cruz and the North Carolina kid looked great while being tossed head-first into the two-minute drill in the first half. The Bears can say otherwise, but if someone comes out of the woodwork to make an offer for Glennon than he’s probably a goner … yes, already! That’s how much Trubisky “sold” the Bears after just one game and a batch of rock-solid practices.
Q: Finally, what NFL teams were “underwhelmed” by their QB play in their first preseason games?
A: To be sure, there were a few teams that exited Preseason Week 1 with a sour taste in their mouths when it came to quarterback play with San Francisco “down” on new starter Brian Hoyer (see 1-of-4 passing for 3 yards in two offensive series against Kansas City) and the Indianapolis Colts none too pleased with the trio of slingers that shared time in Andrew Luck’s absence. If Luck indeed misses the first week or two of the regular-season, Indy needs Scott Tolzien (2-of-5 passing for 24 yards versus Detroit last Sunday afternoon) to perk up his play. Tolzien picked up just one first down in three offensive series. Ugh!
COLLEGE FOOTBALL REPORT: THE PAC-12
Folks, you have to go all the way back to the 2004 season to find the last time a Pac-12 team captured the national championship – you remember those days of Reggie Bush, Matt Leinart and friends, right?
Well, here we fast forward things to 2017 and USC (along with Washington and Stanford) believes this will be the year the Pac-12 returns to the top of the pack.
No matter how you slice it, USC is the numero uno story in the league with super-soph QB Sam Darnold chuckin’ it all around the field but Washington – who lost in the College Football Playoffs last year versus Alabama – says QB Jake Browning will be back for a run at the brass ring.
BEST TEAM – USC
Don’t ask us why it took so darn long last year for the Men of Troy to realize Darnold was their guy at quarterback, but after throwing for 3,086 yards and 31 TDs a year ago, the redhead slinger looks to bring SC back to new/old heights.
BEST PLAYER – Sam Darnold, QB, USC
There’s a slew of NFL-bound talent inside the Pac-12 this season (see Washington QB Browning, UW wide-out Dante Pettis and UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen, to name a few!) but this Trojans’ megastar is a legit Heisman Trophy frontrunner.
BEST GAME – Washington at Stanford, Nov. 10
Expect this showdown at “The Farm” to decide matters when it comes to the Pac-12 North Division. P.S., we remind you that last year Washington lambasted Stanford 44-6 in Seattle.
HIDDEN STORY – Can either (or both) of the Arizona schools rise up and save the jobs of respective head coaches Todd Graham (Arizona State) and Rich Rodriguez (Arizona)? Last year these clubs combined to go 8-16 SU (straight-up) and a grisly 7-16-1 ATS (against the spread).
PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIP GAME PREDICTION – USC over Washington
NOTE: More NFL Preseason News/Notes/Previews coming all week long in the next Jim Sez column!
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