Posts Tagged ‘2022 NFL Season’

Green Bay Packers legend Brett Favre expects a statistical drop-off from Davante Adams now that the All-Pro wide receiver won’t catch passes from Aaron Rodgers anymore.

Adams joined the Las Vegas Raiders in a stunning trade from the Packers this offseason, reviving a connection with quarterback Derek Carr that began in college at Fresno State.

“I do think that Davante will make Derek Carr better, and in time they will be a dynamic duo,” Favre told TMZ Sports. “Now, will it be the duo that Aaron and Davante had? Time will tell. I think Derek Carr is a very good quarterback, but he’s not in Aaron’s league yet. May never be. And that’s no disrespect.

“It’s just hard to shift gears, especially from a player as prolific as Aaron Rodgers. I’d be shocked if he had the same year he’s had in previous years. That’s not to say he can’t do it, but I would be shocked.”

Favre doesn’t think Rodgers will miss Adams as much, though.

“Aaron’s too good,” Favre said. “Most like Tom Brady has gone into every season and managed to just systematically tear teams apart with whoever, it doesn’t matter. And that will be the case with Aaron. Aaron will have a tremendous year.”

Adams has missed seven regular-season games since 2019, but Rodgers turned out just fine without him. The four-time NFL MVP passed for 2,049 yards and 19 touchdowns against just one interception in those contests.

Meanwhile, Rodgers was sidelined just once over the last three seasons – last year against the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 9. Adams was targeted 14 times but caught only six passes for 42 yards with Jordan Love under center for Green Bay.

Adams and Rodgers formed one of football’s most productive duos in recent memory since Green Bay drafted Adams in the second round in 2014. The wideout’s 238 receptions and 29 touchdown catches since 2020 lead the NFL.

Carr, a three-time Pro Bowler, tossed a career-high 4,804 yards to go along with 23 touchdowns and 14 interceptions last year.

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and wide receiver Tyreek Hill have been criticized for a perceived lack of on-field chemistry this offseason, but the two stars don’t think it will be an issue when the season begins.

Hill and Tagovailoa joked about their chemistry on the latest episode of the wideout’s “It Needed To Be Said” podcast, citing the NBA’s dynastic 1990s Chicago Bulls.

“(Dolphins fans) should expect a Dennis Rodman and a Carmen Electra connection,” Hill said, jokingly referring to the nine-day marriage between the former player and model.

Tagovailoa then suggested he be Michael Jordan instead.

“I’ve been underthrowing him so many times that he’s got people talking about how I can’t throw the deep ball,” Tagovailoa jokingly added, in reference to a viral video of him underthrowing Hill at practice.

Hill has no doubt that he’ll soon be on the same page as his quarterback.

“It’s all good,” he said. “I just feel that our chemistry will get there. Look, it’s going to be about 2 a.m. one night and you’re gonna wake up and walk in your kitchen and I’m going to be washing your dishes. That’s how good our chemistry is going to be.”

The Dolphins acquired Hill from the Kansas City Chiefs this year in a blockbuster trade and then signed him to a record five-year deal that will pay the pass-catcher $30 million annually. Hill, who’s earned a Pro Bowl nod in every season since entering the NFL in 2016, racked up 198 receptions for 2,515 yards and 24 touchdowns over the last two campaigns.

Philadelphia Eagles running back Miles Sanders stole the headlines Wednesday after saying Philly players feel “unstoppable” and part of “an All-Star team” this year.

Pro Bowl wide receiver A.J. Brown, the Eagles’ biggest addition in the offseason, reacted to Sanders’ comments Saturday, pumping the breaks on the remarks.

“(Sanders is) excited about what this team could be. We all are,” Brown tweeted. “But we’re not an All-Star team. We definitely could be with years to come. We have (to) strap up our pads and prove it every year and that’s what we plan to do!”

Sanders also suggested Thursday that his quotes were taken out of context by some outlets.

The Eagles acquired Brown from the Tennessee Titans in April as part of a blockbuster trade, adding the star pass-catcher to a promising offensive unit featuring quarterback Jalen Hurts, wide receiver DeVonta Smith, and tight end Dallas Goedert, among others. Philly also added to its defense, signing free-agent pass-rusher Haason Reddick and drafting defensive tackle Jordan Davis in the first round.

Philadelphia lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the wild card last season after finishing second in the NFC East with a 9-8 record. Philly’s offense ranked 12th in scoring in 2021, averaging 26.1 points per game.

Wide receiver Terry McLaurin believes he’s ready to meet the Washington Commanders‘ expectations after signing a lucrative contract extension with the club.

“Playing in the NFL is a blessing and something I will never take for granted,” McLaurin wrote in an open letter Thursday. “From the moment I stepped foot on the field as a seven-year-old to now, I continue to respect the game, play it the right way, and leave everything I have on the field. I love the grind and the process of getting better.”

He added: “From the day I was drafted, I’ve had the singular goal to win a Super Bowl with this franchise. This is on my mind every day when I walk into the building. While I am both humbled and ecstatic about this contract, it motivates me to work even harder.

“I understand and embrace the responsibility that comes with signing this extension. To whom much is given, much is required. There is no other place I would rather be or fan base I would want to represent.”

McLaurin also thanked the Commanders and his teammates.

“As with any life-altering achievement, nobody accomplishes it alone,” he noted.

Washington gave McLaurin – the team’s No. 1 offensive weapon – a three-year contract extension worth up to $71 million Tuesday. The 26-year-old’s new $23.3-million average annual salary ranks seventh among wide receivers, according to Spotrac.

A third-round pick in 2019, McLaurin entered 2022 with only one year left on his rookie contract. The Ohio State product skipped mandatory minicamp and OTAs amid stalled negotiations with the Commanders.

McLaurin has led his team in receiving in each of the last three seasons. He’s racked up 222 catches for 3,090 yards and 16 touchdowns since entering the NFL despite Washington’s struggles at quarterback.

Denver Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy is optimistic that the 2022 season will be special after the club acquired quarterback Russell Wilson.

“Every detail matters with (Wilson),” Jeudy said, according to Troy Renck of Denver7 News. “You learn a lot, just how hard he works and how focused he is when he’s on the field and on the board.”

Jeudy added: “I feel like we are going to be a very explosive team. I feel like we’ve got all the pieces we needed, so we’ve just gotta put it together, and I am excited that is going to happen.”

Wilson, a former Super Bowl champion, brings leadership and stability to the Broncos after spending 10 seasons with the Seattle Seahawks. Seattle traded the nine-time Pro Bowl passer to the Broncos for a bevy of picks that included two first-round selections.

Meanwhile, Jeudy is looking to bounce back after experiencing a series of setbacks last season. The 2020 first-round selection missed seven games in his second year due to an ankle injury and time spent on the COVID-19 list. He tallied 38 receptions for 467 yards and zero touchdowns while averaging 12.3 yards per catch.

The Alabama product is hopeful that with Wilson under center, he can surpass his totals from a promising rookie season in 2020. He recorded 52 receptions for 856 yards and three touchdowns in his first year.

Jeudy also shared that he is healthy ahead of training camp after missing OTAs with a strained groin. The 23-year-old wideout is expected to be a key figure in a Broncos’ pass-catching group that features Courtland SuttonKJ Hamler, and Tim Patrick.

Denver is aiming to improve its 7-10 record from last season. The AFC West club hired Nathaniel Hackett as its head coach after parting ways with Vic Fangio. The former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator will attempt to elevate Denver’s 211.4 passing yards per game and 10.9 yards per reception averages from last year.

Amari Cooper is ready to take on the responsibilities of leading a young receiving corps entering his first season with the Cleveland Browns.

“That’s the position I’m in now,” Cooper said, according to team reporter Anthony Poisal. “These guys look at me like an old guy. They pay a lot of attention to detail, and they know the importance of coming in every day and knowing their stuff and trying to perfect everything they do.”

Cooper, 28, is the second-oldest member of the Browns’ wideout group, behind only Jakeem Grant Sr. (29). The four-time Pro Bowler was acquired in a trade with the Dallas Cowboys for a pair of late-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Donovan Peoples-Jones led the Browns with 597 receiving yards in 2021, while veteran Jarvis Landry led the team with 52 receptions despite missing multiple contests due to injury. Cooper has the opportunity this season to lead the Browns’ receivers on and off the field.

“A lot of leadership comes with experience and age,” Cooper said. “It becomes easier and easier over time because, from what I see now, leadership is just experience.”

The often quiet Cooper seems to have made a favorable impression on his new teammates. “He sets that standard; like we have to shut up and get our work done,” Anthony Schwartz said.

The veteran Cooper is now with his third team following stints with the Cowboys and Oakland Raiders. He’s expected to lead a group that features Peoples-Jones, Schwartz, and rookie David Bell.

The Browns will look to improve on a passing attack that ranked 27th in the NFL last season, averaging 195.3 yards per game.

Cooper has surpassed 1,000 receiving yards in two of his past three seasons. He recorded 68 receptions for 865 yards and eight touchdowns last year.

Deshaun Watson’s disciplinary hearing concluded Thursday with the NFL adamant about an indefinite suspension of at least one year and the quarterback’s legal team arguing there’s no basis for that punishment, two people with knowledge of the case told The Associated Press.

Both sides presented their arguments over three days before former U.S. District Judge Sue Robinson in Delaware, according to both people who spoke on condition of anonymity because the hearing isn’t public.

Watson was accused of sexual misconduct by 24 women and settled 20 of the civil lawsuits.

Robinson, who was jointly appointed by the league and the NFL Players’ Association, will determine whether Watson violated the NFL’s personal conduct policy and whether to impose discipline.

Post-hearing briefs are due the week of July 11 so it’s uncertain when Robinson will make a ruling. The Cleveland Browns are hoping to know Watson’s availability before training camp starts July 27.

If either the union or league appeals Robinson’s decision, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell or his designee “will issue a written decision that will constitute full, final and complete disposition of the dispute,” per terms of Article 46 in the collective bargaining agreement.

A person familiar with the case told the AP the league believes it presented evidence to warrant keeping Watson off the field this season. The person said the league’s investigation determined Watson committed multiple violations of the personal conduct policy and he would be required to undergo counseling before returning.

A person familiar with Watson’s defense told the AP they expect a suspension. Asked what would be acceptable, the person said: “our goal is to get him back on the field this year.”

Two separate Texas grand juries declined to indict Watson on criminal complaints stemming from the allegations.

Watson has denied any wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name.

This is the first hearing for Robinson, who was the first female Chief Judge for the District of Delaware. Previously, Goodell had the authority to impose discipline for violations of the personal conduct policy.

Justin Herbert is confident his Los Angeles Chargers can compete against the league’s best, but he knows they must be more consistent to do so.

“It’s all about consistency,” Herbert said on “SiriusXM NFL Radio.” “We have to put together a full season for us to play the football that we want to.”

The Chargers narrowly missed the postseason last year despite finishing with a 9-8 record due to a late-season slide that involved an overtime loss to the Las Vegas Raiders and a shocking defeat to the 4-13 Houston Texans. The club struggled with balance as it placed fifth in scoring but 29th in points allowed.

Los Angeles responded accordingly this offseason, adding the likes of Khalil Mack and J.C. Jackson, among others. However, other AFC West teams also improved, with the Denver Broncos acquiring Russell Wilson and the Raiders landing Davante Adams.

“We’ve definitely added some guys on defense, picked up a few guys on offense, and had a great offseason so far,” Herbert noted.

He added: “As soon as the season comes, we understand it’s all about execution and being sharp week in and week out, never looking ahead, and making sure we’re doing everything we can to give ourselves a shot on Sundays.”

Herbert has thrown for 9,350 yards with 69 touchdowns to 25 interceptions over his first two seasons, though he’s still in search of his first career postseason berth.

The Houston Texans had been told that their former quarterback Deshaun Watson was sexually assaulting and harassing women during massage sessions, but instead of trying to stop him, the team provided him with resources to enable his actions and “turned a blind eye” to his behavior, according to a lawsuit filed Monday.

The lawsuit against the team was filed in Houston by one of the 24 women who had previously sued Watson over allegations of sexual misconduct when he played for the Texans. Last week, the women’s attorney, Tony Buzbee, announced 20 of the 24 lawsuits have been settled.

Watson, who was later traded to the Cleveland Browns, has denied any wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name. Watson is facing discipline from the NFL over the allegations. He is set to have a hearing this week with NFL disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson, who will decide if the 26-year-old violated the league’s personal conduct policy. Robinson is expected to rule before the Browns open training camp late next month.

In their lawsuits, the women accused Watson of exposing himself, touching them with his penis or kissing them against their will during massage appointments. One woman alleged Watson forced her to perform oral sex.

The lawsuit against the Texans accuses the team and some of its employees of having been told or being aware of Watson’s troubling behavior. Joni Honn, the owner of a massage company that was contracted with the Texans, told police investigators that her therapists were aware of Watson’s “known tendency to push boundaries during massage sessions,” according to the lawsuit.

Honn told the Texans, including the team’s head trainer, that Watson was reaching out to random women on Instagram for massages in early 2020, according to the lawsuit.

Magen Weisheit, another massage therapist who worked with the Texans, told Houston police investigators she and others were well aware of Watson’s conduct during massage sessions. When Weisheit learned of the allegations made against Watson by a woman who filed the first lawsuit against him, she wrote in a text to the woman’s former co-worker that she could reach out to the team’s player personnel person but “they don’t do much about the situation though,” according to the lawsuit.

“Despite being actually aware of what can only be described as troubling behavior, the Houston Texans turned a blind eye. Worse, the Houston Texans organization enabled Watson’s egregious behavior. The Texans also protected and shielded Watson — for Watson’s own protection and the protection of the organization itself,” according to the lawsuit.

The woman’s lawsuit alleges the Texans provided Watson with various resources, including rooms at a Houston hotel, massage tables and a non-disclosure agreement the women were told to sign, that allowed the quarterback “to further his misconduct with women by turning the massage sessions into something sexual.”

The Texans are also accused of having their head of security remove from the internet an Instagram video from November 2020 in which a woman had detailed alleged misconduct by Watson during massage sessions with her.

In a statement, the Houston Texans did not specifically address the various allegations made against the team.

“We are aware of the lawsuit filed against us today. Since March 2021, we have fully supported and complied with law enforcement and the various investigations. We will continue to take the necessary steps to address the allegations against our organization,” the Texans said.

Buzbee said the lawsuit against the Texans was the first of many he plans to file against the team.

“Suffice it to say, the overwhelming evidence collected indicating that the Houston Texans enabled Watson’s behavior is incredibly damning. We believe the Texans knew or most certainly should have known of Watson’s conduct,” Buzbee said in a statement.

The NFL declined to comment on the lawsuit against the Texans.

“I never assaulted anyone,” Watson said June 14 in his first public comments since being introduced by the Browns in March. “I never harassed anyone or I never disrespected anyone. I never forced anyone to do anything.”

In March, two separate Texas grand juries declined to indict him on criminal complaints stemming from the allegations.

Houston police Detective Kamesha Baker, the lead investigator in the criminal investigation, told Buzbee in a deposition that she believed Watson had committed crimes in the 10 criminal complaints that had been filed against the quarterback. Baker also said that Watson’s conduct during the massage sessions was escalating in such a way she believed that he would commit even more serious crimes, according to the lawsuit.

After the grand juries declined to indict, several teams pursued Watson, who agreed to be traded to the Browns. Cleveland signed the three-time Pro Bowler to a five-year, $230 million contract in March.

The four lawsuits still pending against Watson could still go to trial, but that wouldn’t happen until 2023 at the earliest.

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence praised Doug Pederson on Tuesday, saying the head coach’s leadership has been a difference-maker for the franchise so far.

“We’re building toward something special,” Lawrence said, according to CBS Sports’ Cody Benjamin. “It’s been great, just the way (Doug) interacts with the team, the way he leads. I think personality-wise, we’re similar. We get along well.”

Lawrence added: “Obviously, he played quarterback, he’s won a Super Bowl as a player and as a coach, so he knows how to get there. He knows how to do it. I think that’s really important to have in a leader like that. And just the energy he’s brought to the building has been awesome.”

Pederson joined Jacksonville in February to replace Urban Meyer, who was fired partway through last season after a 2-11 start. The 54-year-old Pederson, who spent 2021 away from football, last coached the Philadelphia Eagles from 2016-20, winning one Super Bowl with the team. He also lifted the Lombardi Trophy as a backup quarterback for the Green Bay Packers during the 1996 season.

Lawrence, the first overall pick in the 2021 draft, struggled as a rookie, completing just 59.6% of his passes for 3,641 yards and 12 touchdowns against a league-high 17 interceptions. The Jaguars finished the season 3-14, the worst record in the NFL.

“I think (last year) really taught me how to stay the same every day, to be consistent,” Lawrence said. “Just my attitude, my work ethic, no matter how things are going. I know what it’s like to struggle as a rookie.

“Now in my second year, I have a good feel for the schedule (and) can really feel like I’m prepared.”