Ben Watson has hands!
With Benjamin Watson, the Browns now have another tight end with good hands to go along with Evan Moore who came on strong last season.
Even Robert Royal made a good catch! He was terrible last season, but you have to wonder how much he was affected by two sub-par quarterbacks. Royal is a good blocker, so I think he still has a chance to hang on a keep a roster spot, particularly if he starts catching the ball.
Peyton Hillis and his impact on the power running game and the passing game
We saw some sloppy play the other night when the Cleveland Browns faced the St. Louis Rams, but we also saw more good signs heading into the new season.
It was a joy watching Peyton Hillis play. He’s the kind of blue-collar player that can make this team more physical so we get back to Browns football. He’s a tough runner who is hard to bring down, and he showed that on Saturday night as he punished the Rams in the running game. On one play it took practically the entire defense to bring him to a stop, and they were lucky the refs blew the whistle as Hillis broke free again at the end of the run.
Hillis is also an excellent receiver, which gives the Browns more options in the passing game. We know Jerome Harrison can be explosive catching the ball out of the backfield, and we’re seeing that Hillis can be very effective as well. This can be a huge plus in games when the Browns are facing a tough pass rush. Hillis is a big back who can help on pass protection in games where Harrison is having trouble picking up blitzes.
Finally, we haven’t even seen Montario Hardesty yet. With Hillis, Harrison, and then Lawrence Vickers opening up holes, the running backs suddenly look like a strength on this team.
Here’s another photo of Hillis. It will be nice to see him pounding the Steelers and Ravens defenses.
The Browns look like a real team again
It’s only one preseason game, but watching the Cleveland Browns last night against the Green Bay Packers, a Super Bowl favorite, had to make Browns fans feel better for a change.
What we saw was a team that belonged on the field with their opponent. We also saw a team that had two NFL quarterbacks. Jake Delhomme looked like a solid veteran, and Seneca Wallace looked like a potential weapon at that position. We don’t have to hold our breath any more and hope that Brady Quinn can hit a wide open receiver or that Derek Anderson can stop throwing the ball right in the hands of defensive backs.
We still don’t know how good this offense can be, but we do know that they probably won’t looked like a bunch of over-matched amateurs when trying to throw the ball. Mike Holmgren realized that a change needed to be made, and I suspect that Eric Mangini was all for a change as well.
The running game also didn’t miss a beat. It was a joy to watch the Browns pound in that first touchdown from the four yard line. Lawrence Vickers is a beast at fullback, and Jerome Harrison showed again that he can gain tough yardage. With a solid running game, Delhomme should be able to have a solid season. Also, we didn’t even see the Wildcat last night and Josh Cribbs didn’t touch the ball!
Peyton Hillis showed that we now have several weapons coming out of the backfield. This kid is a great receiver, and I loved seeing the screen pass. We haven’t even seen Montario Hardesty yet.
The defense could stop one of the best offenses in the league, so let’s hope they play better against more typical NFL offenses. That said, the young DBs looked pretty good. T.J. Ward looks like a real player, even with some of the mistakes. Joe Haden looked solid, and we saw a glimpse of his athletic ability and speed on the kickoff return.
Bottom line – the Browns looked like a team that can play with the better teams in this league. Let’s see how they do next week at home against the St. Louis Rams, a team that seems to be starting over.
Posted in: Cleveland Browns
Tags: Brady Quinn, Derek Anderson, Eric Mangini, Green Bay Packers, Jake Delhomme, Jerome Harrison, Joe Haden, Josh Cribbs, Lambeau Field, Lawrence Vickers, Mike Holmgren, Montario Hardesty, Peyton Hillis, Seneca Wallace, T.J. Ward
Ohio State Buckeyes are #2 in first coaches’ poll
Coming off their huge win over Oregon in the Rose Bowl, the Buckeyes start the season with the #2 ranking in the first USA Today coaches’ poll.
The Big Ten also gets some recognition to open the season.
With four teams in the top 15, the Big Ten had more than any other conference. Iowa is No. 10, Wisconsin No. 12 and Penn State No. 14. The Buckeyes play all those teams, as well as playing host to No. 13 Miami in the second week of the season.
I thought that the Buckeyes would have to go undefeated to earn a shot at the National Championship, but the schedule might give them a shot even if they suffer a close loss in one of the Big Ten games, though I still think that’s a long shot.
The key is beating Miami. The Buckeyes have no chance at a title shot without beating a respected non-conference opponent.
George Foreman, A Successful Second Act, Examined For Sportsbook Reviews
George Foreman — he’s the big guy on all the commercials for the outdoor grill. Seems like a great guy, really funny and really friendly. That’s who he is, right?
Sure, George Foreman is a fun guy who’s created an amazing business with his handy Foreman Grill. But do you know who else he is? He’s a two-time heavyweight boxing world champion, as well as an Olympic gold medalist for boxing.
Foreman won the heavyweight title in 1973 with a clean knockout punch to the reigning champ, Joe Frazier. A year later, in 1974, he lost the title when he fought Muhammad Ali in the legendary “Rumble in the Jungle” heavyweight championship in Zaire. Foreman lost to Ali, but went on to fight, and win, for many more years.
Yet like every fighter, Foreman knew he had to face the bittersweet reality that sooner or later, he’d have to hang up the gloves. But what could he do for a second act?
In Foreman’s case, the answer came through an honest chat with God. In 1977, Foreman was injured during a fight in Puerto Rico against Jimmy Young. Suffering from exhaustion in his dressing room after the fight, Foreman felt that God was speaking to him, telling him to change his life. The experience so affected Foreman, he became a born-again Christian and ordained minister.
He has since dedicated much of his life to charitable work and to his ministry, while also becoming a highly successful spokesman and entrepreneur. Though he retired, he did come back to fight again many times, even regaining the world heavyweight title at age 44, becoming the oldest fighter ever to hold the title.
Plenty of sportsbook reviews and magazine articles have been written about him, and many more are still to be written. With kindness, humor, and grace, Foreman’s life keeps unfolding in sometimes astounding ways.
Sports Start Interact with Fans by Tweeting about Xbox Games and More
In the past, if a sports fan wanted to come in contact with a favorite athlete, the only reliable way was while trying to obtain an autograph. Some athletes signed autographs after a game. A child may have been able to get an autograph from a sports star while in a restaurant. It was a challenge to meet your favorite sports star, but it was generally a special occurrence. Today’s athlete can reach out to his or her fans in many ways — in real time.
With the growth of blogs, sports stars can write articles about everything. Quarterback Donovan McNabb blogs about football and charitable projects that he’s involved in while baseball player Pat Neshek posts entries every few days about daily life and his baseball adventures. Even athletes in sports that are not part of the big four — football, basketball, baseball and hockey — can connect with fans and talk about whatever interests them. Olympic athletes Brianna Glenn and Lauryn Williams regularly update fans about happenings in their sports lives; former heavyweight boxing champion Buster Douglas also maintains a blog about life and boxing.
Other sports stars maintain connect with Twitter. Sports fans can get regular updates and even replies from their favorite players in all sports — once you sign up to follow a player. Some popular sports Tweeters are Shaquille O’Neil, Dwight Howard, and Serena Williams. Sports stars can also post interesting pictures and give fans an up-to-the-minute breakdown of their everyday movements. Some sports stars may even talk about what Xbox games he or she is currently playing. A search of Twitter can uncover a variety of sports stars and fans can interact with any of them.
Today’s sports fans have unprecedented access to the sports stars of today. Waiting for an autograph as the only way to meet your favorite sports athlete is no longer necessary.
Does Your Favorite Sports Star Have Custom Poker Tables?
s poker a sport? Poker is a diversion which is a requirement for a sport but does not require much physical exertion to play. Poker also involves skill, a bit of luck, nerve and an ability to lie — or bluff — in order for a player to be successful. These skills are generally found in many professional sports stars; many of these athletes have taken up the game of poker — either for enjoyment, for charity events, or even as professional players.
On trips between games, many sports teams play poker. The ill-fated results of a team poker game between Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton earlier this year was well-publicized; however, most team games do not involve guns. Olympic athletes such as Michael Phelps, Hannah Teter and John Shuster all have also become well-known poker players.
Other sports players display their poker skills in charitable events. During the Fourth of July weekend in 2010, there was a charity tournament in Las Vegas called Ante Up For Africa. Sports stars Jerome Bettis and Evander Holyfield participated and Bettis finished sixth. The Lakers Young Foundation also has a charity event this month and a variety of present and former Lakers are expected to participate. Combining a good cause with the thrill of a poker game is an optimal situation for many sports stars.
After life in the sports world, some athletes decide to become professional poker players. Former professional baseball player Orel Hershiser and Erica Schoenberg, who is a former volleyball player, have both moved to the professional poker circuit. These sports athletes probably have custom poker tables in their homes for games with their friends.
Just because sports athletes enjoy the challenge of the game does not mean that poker is truly a sport. Unless there is an extreme version of the game that involves racing or climbing, many will enjoy the fun of poker — as the game.