Archive for March, 2010

Sam Bradford, Tim Tebow & Jim Kelly: 2010 NFL Draft Smoke

Today none other than long-time NFL writer Gil Brandt opined that Sam Bradford’s Pro Day Workout had left people speechless and was the greatest workout since Troy Aikman.

Meanwhile news leaked that legendary Bills quarterback Jim Kelly had been involved in a dinner the team had with Florida quarterback-turned-Draft-lightning-rod Tim Tebow. According to Kelly (or rather his wife’s Twitter-feed) the former quarterback came away impressed.

Of course what this has led to in both cases is intense media speculation about everything as to when they will be drafted to whether they (in Bradford’s case) will sign before the draft.

Days like this remind me of the old saying: Believe none of what you hear and half of what you see.

Let’s think about what we really heard today – not the hype, not the crazy salivating. What was actually said.

Bradford had a good Pro Day - but best ever?

In Bradford’s case, he had an outstanding Pro Day, no doubt about it.

Keep in mind though—the guy threw a ton of passes, yes, but scripted and with absolutely no pressure on him. He didn’t take a hit, didn’t have to get back off the turf after a big hit to his shoulder.

Now, I’m not going to downplay the work he did to get his shoulder right. He is showing no weakness in the shoulder and that assuages my one big concern for him.

I don’t worry much about durability—the guy chose to try and let his shoulder heal on it’s own via rehab and when he come back, it was clear that wasn’t enough.

So throwing the way he did is a big deal. But he didn’t show that much more than we expected did he? Did we see something never seen before? I’ve been to a bunch of Pro Days, including a rather impressive one Mark Sanchez had at USC last year.

Hell John David Booty had an impressive Pro Day.

I’m hear to tell you it’d be more of a shock if he had a bad day.

So what did we learn? We learned his arm is fine, his accuracy is just as advertised and he can throw a deep ball when not under pressure.

Aside from that? Hype. Keep some perspective—locked in 1st pick? Maybe. Hall of Fame? Maybe later…

As a side note, we’re a month out and while we’re all assuming Bradford is the top pick, suddenly reports say he’s not going to sign his not-yet-offered contract.

So…. we’ve got the World’s Greatest Pro Day and a Qb who is rumored in some vague way to not be sure he’ll sign a contract that doesn’t exist yet.


Our other Over-Reaction Moment for Monday involved Tim Tebow. Shocking, I know.

I would dearly love to spend a day with this guy if just to see what he’s really

With Tebow it's hard to seperate truth from hype.


Because who can tell with the smoke and mirrors around him? I have to wonder how much he buys into what is said about him. He seems very grounded, but how the heck would I know? How could anyone outside of those who take him to dinner or interview him in a dark room at their team facilities?

Speaking of dinner, the Bills had Tebow over for dinner this weekend and rumors ran rampant on the internet about how impressed Kelly was with him.

What did the staff think? Hard to say since everyone was busy reading into Kelly’s reaction which actually wasn’t even his so much as his wife’s reaction to his reaction.

Head hurt? It should. All the discussion about the Bills came about mostly because of one person’s excitement about another person’s excitement.

Am I saying Tebow isn’t going to the Bills or that Jim Kelly didn’t fall in love with him after dinner? No. What I am saying is that it shouldn’t really be this much news when a) a team meets with a top prospect or b) someone comes away with a dinner with Tebow and says he’s a class act.


This is the part of the year where teams start some real gamesmanship. I’m sure the Bills are thinking a bit about Tebow. But how much? Hard to say and anyone who swears they know the level better be working for the team.

But we’re watching high-stakes poker. Teams are all trying to see how soon they have to go ‘all in’ to get what they want.

Someone will blink on Tebow. They’ll see—or rather think they see—another team ahead of them in the next round start to move and they’ll leap forward, push their chips in and hope to good they don’t get river’d.

I have my concerns about Tebow, but there is enough buzz around him to where people are intrigued. It does feel a bit like Tebow is a strong possibility for the Bills, and I think they may strongly consider him with their second round pick.

Though some of that just feels like it’s what they want me to feel.

Like so many things, we’re being manipulated early and often.

So next time you see that blurb about Jacksonville feeding Tebow or Player A having ‘the greatest Pro Day recorded in human history since we started recording history’, make sure you read a little closer and think a little longer.

And try not to step in the hype.

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The Thundering Blurb Show – 3/25

You can download or stream the show here and here on the Itunes feed. Subscribe and post your opinion on it as well to let me know how I’m doing.

A very brief write-up today since I spent the morning doing school tours and applications for the youngest Blurb’s schooling.

We had two great guests last night, both NFL Draft prospects from my old stomping grounds in Los Angeles.

First we welcome Ryan Moya—Tight End/H-Back from the UCLA Bruins. We talk a little about his versatility and what it offers NFL teams, the changes under Neuheisel as well as what he’s been focusing on for his upcoming Pro Day.

Without missing a beat, we then have offensive guard Alex Parsons from crosstown rival USC on the line. We talk about approaching run blocking vs pass blocking, how being a little brother gave him an extra edge (and some insight into defensive players), the challenges playing with a freshman quarterback and what he feels he will bring to a NFL franchise.

I came away pretty impressed with both guys, most specifically their willingness to do whatever it took to get—and keep—a roster spot.

They’re later round guys and I think they know that means they’ll have to work that much harder to keep their slot.

We also touch on the overtime brouhaha and the Jets imminent ‘Hard Knocks’ announcement (since confirmed).

Thanks for listening, and letting me a part of your off-season.

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Thundering Blurb Show for 3/17

Last night’s show was chock full of info as well as guests.

Check it out here or subscribe via the ITunes feed.  Or do both!

After kicking the show off with some Dropkick Murphy’s in honor of St. Patrick’s Day I touch on LaDainian Tomlinson’s new home with the Jets (and how it makes my kid the Charger/Bengal/Jets fan happy & sad), how Tim Tebow’s Pro Day didn’t tell us anything much new and how ridiculous Charlie Whitehurst’s contract is.

After that, we welcome Daniel Jeremiah of Move The Sticks to the show. Actually Daniel and I taped the spot Tuesday night, but if you’re about to listen for the first time, I guess that’s neither here nor there.

Daniel and I touch on a wide range of subjects including what Tebow had to do at his Pro Day and if it really matters, why maturity is more important in a quarterback than a wide receiver, whether Jonathan Dwyer is the real deal and why he likes Ryan Mathews so much.

I always like meeting new folks to chat about football with and not only does Daniel know his stuff, he was a pleasure to talk to. Hopefully we’ll be able to get him back—without the 4.4 earthquake next time.

After that, we welcome Ralph Mancini, editor of Rick Seritella (head man at NFLDB) was supposed to come on but was ’stuck in traffic’ which on St. Patty’s Day could be code for ’stuck in a pub’.

Maybe that says more about me than him though. Could be.

Regardless, Ralph fills in very ably, covering topics such as Tebow’s Pro Day, if the quarterback class is really as weak as it seems, if Eric Berry’s toe is really a worry, the solidifying of Joe Haden as top corner and his opinion of who should be the #2 wide receiver behind Dez Bryant.

Ralph did a great job pinch hitting and I appreciate him coming by. Haven’t talked to him in some time, so it was nice to catch up and talk some football with him again.

Great show and both guys brought along a bunch of new ears to the place. I hope if you’ve dropped by for the first time, you enjoyed the show. As always you can reach me at thunderingblurb (at) gmail dot-com or hit me up on twitter at

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2010 Rookie Quarterback Rankings (Pre-Draft) Guest article

Hey folks – every once in a while we’re going to have a guest columnist here at The Blurb. Sometimes it will be someone you’re familiar with, others maybe not so much.

But I thought it would be nice to get you guys some extra takes and this time of year is perfect for it.

This week we will have a bunch of stuff brought to you by Fantasy Football I’ve known Jeff Hoffman and Jay Charles Johnson for a long time—in fact working with them for a few years. Always good stuff.

Today, we’ve got a piece from Jeff on some of the rookie QBs as they stand right now. As you may notice, they don’t mirror my own, which is why I like to bring you other people’s stuff. as you form your own takes, the more info you get, the more informed that take will be.




While many of the top prospects did not throw at the combine they already had a body of work to evaluate and it have us more time to see more about the rest of the class at the combine. Here are our top ten rookie quarterbacks for this class prior to the draft.

1. Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame, 6-3, 222, 4.75:

NFL Comparison: Matt Ryan

Positives: Clausen is a NFL ready quarterback who ran a pro-style offense as a three year starter. With two years with 6 or less interceptions, and a completion percentage of 62.6%, Clausen makes solid decisions and protects the football. In a pinch a team could select him, start him his first year and have him learn on the job.

Negatives: Clausen has an average arm, and cannot make big plays with arm strength alone. He also has a tendency to take too many hits in the pocket when holding the ball too long, and can get nicked up as a result.


2. Sam Bradford, Oklahoma, 6-4, 236, 4.75:

NFL Comparison: Matt Schaub

Positives: Bradford is a proven leader with extensive experience and has faced a wide range of high pressure situations at the college level. He is the definition of team player and team leader on and off the field. He also has an above average arm, and makes quality decisions with the ball.

Negatives: Played behind a very solid offensive line in college, so it is an unknown how he would handle being behind a poor offensive line (like the Rams?). He also has shown that is shoulders are a source of concern after two serious shoulder injuries within the same year. He should be 100% before the start of training camp, but it is a concern.


3. Colt McCoy, Texas, 6-1, 216, 4.81:

NFL Comparison: Marc Bulger

Positives: McCoy is a proven leader from a quality program and a very experienced prospect. He also has experience taking over from a legend (Vince Young), and playing at a high level when thrown into the action at a very young age. Solid NFL arm.

Negatives: Had a strong supporting cast in college, so it is unknown how he will perform on a team without elite talent. Has a history of some questionable decisions in high pressure situations, and might need time to develop on the pro level. Finally, he is just few inches below ideal height and has a slight frame that could result in injuries at the pro-level.


4. Tim Tebow, Florida, 6-3, 236, 4.72

NFL Comparison: David Garrard

Positives: You could not ask for a better leader or team player. Amazing leadership, will to win, and possible the most physically gifted prospect as a mobile quarterback since Vince Young. Not afraid to duck his head and fight for yardage as a runner. Amazing work ethic that could help him greatly exceed expectations.

Negatives: Needs to adjust to a traditional pro-offense and adjust his mechanics to the NFL game. Realistically is he 2-3 years from being a viable NFL Starter. If he cannot adjust to the NFL he might be out of the league in a few years, or have to change to another position (like TE).


5. Tony Pike, Cincinnati, 6-6, 223, 4.93

NFL Comparison: Joe Flacco

Positives: Excellent height and field vision, and quality NFL arm that can make all the throws at the NFL level. Proven leader that makes good decisions, and protects the ball. Not fast, but very fluid in the pocket.

Negatives: Durability is a major red flag, with a frame that is under-sized for his height. Limited experience as a starter and will have to change his mechanics at the NFL level.


Best of the Rest:

6. Jevan Snead, Ole Miss, 6-3, 219, 5.04: Snead regressed his senior year, after being considered a possible elite prospect after his sophomore year. Has show a tendency to make poor decisions under pressure and throw interceptions that are game killers. He has the physical tools, but he needs to make mental adjustments to succeed in the NFL.


7. Dan LeFevour, Central Michigan, 6-3, 230, 4.66: Excellent athlete and can make plays on the move. Accurate passer, but has problems with the deep ball and has poor NFL mechanics. Has tendency to take off and run under pressure.


8. Jarrett Brown, West Virginia, 6-3, 224, 4.54: Excellent physical skills and height, makes quality decisions with the ball, but lacks the NFL arm to make plays deep. Limited starting experience.


9. John Skelton, Fordham, 6-5, 243, 4.9: Quality physical candidate, with the ability to make smart decisions with the ball. Questionable competition at college makes him a risky proposition at the pro-level.


10. Zac Robinson, Oklahoma, 6-2, 214, 4.68: Has the physical tools to develop into an NFL signal caller. One can only imagine how much higher his stock could have been if Dez Bryant had not been suspended.

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Thundering Blurb Show for 3/10

Maybe I’m biased—I am—but I could talk to Cecil Lammey all day, every day.

I got 30 minutes last night, so I guess it’ll do.

Before I go further, I’ll reiterate here what I tweeted this morning and Cec

None of these people will be me - but I will be there

and I discuss on the show:

I will be fully credentialed media at the NFL Draft. On the floor, at the scene at Radio City all three days.

I can’t even express how geeked I am for it, and I have to take a moment to thank Cecil and 104.3 the Fan in Denver for thinking of me when the gig opened.

Check Lammey out at &

Aside from pimping myself, Cecil and I discuss his Mock Draft series, the ‘What if? Mocks’. The basics for it is: Cecil throws a monkey wrench (trade, free agent signing, position run) in the first round and examines what the effect will be.

This time out it’s four quarterbacks in the first and what that means for the other teams.

Cecil and I also talk about running backs and how their overall value isn’t what it used to be as teams look for value later.

All in all, great interview as always. Cecil spends more time than a lot of folks doing this with his road trips to the All Star games and covering stuff for Denver radio. The man knows.

I finish up by chatting about Rutgers’ Pro Day—for the first time streamed live on the interwebs.

I don’t think this has been done before and kudos for having the foresight to take a chance and do it.

To me, it was a mixed bag. Some of the interviews weren’t incredibly well conducted and there was more chatting and promos than footage of the drills. I do discuss that both OT Anthony Davis and CB Devin McCourty did very little—Davis didn’t even do drills as far as I know—and they did show more of the drills when McCourty did his position drills.

It might work better if a school had more players that are hot, such as USC had last year.

But a good first effort and I expect it to get better as time goes on. And likely another school might do it better—but Rutgers was first and being a pioneer gets some applause from me.

Rutgers GETS what the internet can do for it. You can’t fault them for running promos when they essentially have a captive audience.

First time out is usually rough, so while it could have been better I applaud them for being the people to take the first step.

Most organizations don’t take the risk that comes with being pioneers in something. People love to be first, but don’t like to risk falling on their face.

Rutgers didn’t fall on it’s face. They took a chance and while they didn’t nail it, they can take pride in a solid effort.

That’s all for now – remember, not only can you listen live on Wednesdays, but you can download the episodes direct from or subscribe via the Blurb Itunes feed.

If you do, drop a comment/review on Itunes or below and let me know what you think!

Thanks for listening and following.

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NFL Draft Writing Odds and Ends

So the weekend and early portion of this week has been hectic, and I was remiss in letting you guys know a pair of articles had dropped in that time.

First off, my running back analysis hit over at Top 20 draft prospects at the position along with some detailed thoughts on the reasoning behind the rankings.

As a side note, we’ve got Cecil Lammey of Draftguys, Footballguys and the accompanying podcast The Audible on tonight to talk about another feature at Draftguys called ‘What if? Mock Drafts’. It’s a really interesting concept, basically taking your average Mock and throwing in a monkey wrench into it (for example, what if Brandon Marshall is traded to the Seahawks).

The second article relates to my writing at As some of you might recall, I am taking part in a feature writers mock as GM of the San Francisco 49ers. The #17 pick came up and I made my selection. Read about it here…

That’s all for now – show tonight at 10pm EST on Some big announcements coming up in the next month or so. Stay tuned…

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The Thundering Blurb Show – 3/3

Hey kids, hope this post finds you well. Last night was another great show and thanks for everyone who was in the chat or listening live. (You can also check it out on the ITunes if you’ve a mind…)

Thanks for you slackers coming in late as well.

That was a joke – I want to make sure you know that since my humor on Twitter has somehow been taken seriously of late.

It’s scary someone thought I really believed the Germans Bombed Pearl Harbor when I was cheering the US hockey team to a comeback.

There have been others, so I’m just letting you know, I’m kidding. Just in case.

Before Matt comes on at the half-way point, I talk a little about several of the tenders teams are placing on players (Leon Washington, Brandon Marshall) and what the implications could be for both players and teams.

Also I talk a bit about players rumored to be potentially traded (Boldin, Marshall), those that will be cut (Thomas Jones) and those that could attract attention (Washington) regardless of tender.

At the halfway point, Matt Waldman of the Rookie Scouting Portfolio, and stops by to talk about some offensive players.

We touch on some running backs we like (Dwyer! Gerhart!), some wide receivers, the Qb triumverate of Bradford/Clausen/Tebow and whether Waldman will survive Tennessee with one Cecil Lammey as his sidekick.

Matt as always is money, and we don’t have near enough time to go over all he knows so you know he’ll be back.

Check out some sample pages of the Rookie Scouting Portfolio and save your pennies for April 1st when it drops.

Whether you’re a football fan, draftnik or fantasy owner, you will be blown away. Trust me.

Thanks to all for listening however you do it. Feel free to drop your thoughts in the comments.

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