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The new NFL pass interference replay rule is a welcome change, Robert Kraft is fighting to save his legacy and the Raiders might not be as complete on Derek Carr as they say. All this and more in the 10-point position this week.
1. at the hour
This week, as coaches, team leaders and homeowners met behind closed doors at league meetings in Phoenix and debated the extension of the replay to include the interfered calls, Saints coach Sean Payton , pleaded passionately for change. League officials said his arguments were intelligent and ultimately extremely convincing.
Now, some league members are calling the NFL's decision to broaden the replay to include pass interference in the last two minutes of each half-rule of Sean Payton.
There are times when the NFL is very wrong. This is one of the times when the league got something completely right, and Payton is the main reason.
The change comes two months after the officials missed an interfering call with Nickell Robey-Coleman of the Rams at the end of the match for the NFC title. Around the NFL, this change is considered one of the most important rule changes of recent decades.
Although the rule has been implemented on a one – year trial basis, many sources in the championship say that it is likely to remain. The only team to vote against the change was the Bengals, because these are the Bengals.
The fact that the rule was adopted so quickly is significant for a league that is not known to be collectively nimble or open to adaptation. The NFL sometimes looks like a Brontosaurus; he can be touched at the tail and will not feel the impact until much later.
It was different, and it's no coincidence that Payton is the main engine. Of course, this is partly a matter of personal interest because it is the saints who have felt the full impact of the blatant non-visit on Robey-Coleman. If the flag had been thrown, the saints would probably have been in the Super Bowl, not the Rams.
But it's more than that. Payton is one of the most innovative thinkers in the history of football and, in general, innovators hate when progress is slow and does not have to be slow. We see all calls on TV and on our phones. We know when the arbitrators go bankrupt. The league could not continue to act as we do not.
Payton, who is a member of the NFL's Competition Committee, said Charean Williams from Pro Football Talk:
"I think it's more about football [than a personal victory]. Honestly, when you sit on this committee, you really try to focus more on the history of sport. I just released copies of … all these others [proposals] we do not use to look at one day and be like, 'Ah, it's those who have not gone past.' I think it's more because of our responsibility that we have the responsibility, and that's really what I mean.
"It will not always be perfect, and we know it, the simple shape of the ball tells you that it's not going to bounce the same way, but it's mistakes that analysts are able to point out and say. : "Hey, these are the most powerful mistakes." I think we understood. "
Do they ever have. Highligths.
2. An inheritance in question
Mark Humphrey / Associated Press
Patriots owner Bob Kraft has long been one of the most popular owners of the NFL. The late Art Modell (Browns and Ravens) sometimes called Kraft "nice Guy Bob". It was not sarcastic.
Regarded as a truly kind man, Kraft was not perceived as a scratch or malice, unlike many other owners. He was a man of opinion but fair, firm but decent, a rich and kind guy.
Even though Kraft has made the policy to get a new stadium and has beaten against commissioner Roger Goodell against Spygate and Deflategate, he has generally avoided the sometimes ugly reputation of other league owners, such as the owner of the Cowboys , Jerry Jones.
Kraft was charged with two counts of solicitation related to a prostitution case in Florida last month. He pleaded not guilty and issued a statement. last week in which he he is excused.
(Kraft's arrest is the result of an extensive investigation into human trafficking, including the spa he allegedly visited, which is obviously a much bigger problem than the inheritance of a Kraft owner. the NFL, but it's a sports column, only deals with Kraft's story here.)
Kraft does not fight for his freedom. He will probably not go to jail. Instead, he is fighting for his legacy. He fights for the way the history of football considers him.
He is not only a six-time Super Bowl winner, but one of the best players in the league. After last month, will he still be seen this way?
Some members of the league believe that Kraft will be speaking to several media in the weeks and months to come and will apologize again. This week, several Kraft friends spoke to Bob Hohler about Boston Globe about his agony right now.
"Bob apparently made a serious mistake," Jack Connors, a Kraft friend who recently spoke to him, told Hohler. "But I think you will now see him redouble his efforts to do good to people who have been victims of this type of business." And he continues to support charities with this. kind, I will be proud of my friend. "
The NFL people also believe that Kraft's excuse tour, stories like that of the World and others to come soften the ground and prepare the audience for what happens when Kraft dating videos appear. Smart money still says that TMZ will receive the video, but the sheriff in the case told CNBC's Scott Zamost that the videos "will probably be released. "
And as we all know about countless scandals, it's hard to erase something from memory banks. once a video appears unless you fight like hell to do it.
Time will tell if Kraft succeeds.
3. Hackers keep their options open
Rick Scuteri / Associate Press
On Monday, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden tried to stop speculation by informing Jim Trotter of the NFL that Derek Carr was the starting quarterback.
"Yeah, he'll be our quarterback," said Gruden. "I'm not going to answer all the rumors, I do not care about those rumors, you know, he's thrown for 4,100 yards, thrown for almost 70% in a very difficult and difficult situation." he has a lot of confidence in Carr, which he can do with Antonio Brown, with Tyrell Williams, with Trent Brown coming here to help our offensive line, with a better defense, and I'm excited about Carr. "
That may be true, but the Raiders, who are fourth overall in the repechage, appear to be exercising due diligence with the quarterbacks in the repechage for a team supposedly settled at the position. .
According to Albert Breer of The MMQB, the Raiders will be working on Kyler Murray (Oklahoma) and Dwayne Haskins (Ohio State) next week.
It's a smart move from the Raiders, who have done a lot of smart acts lately, like wide receiver Antonio Brown's negotiation. It is not because Carr is the starting quarterback early in the game that the team should not look to improve, or at least find someone that Gruden shares fully.
I am not the only one to believe that Carr is not the long term solution, and I can not imagine that the Raiders believe it. Maybe that makes the game risky for Haskins, as many teams expect the Raiders to decide.
I would not blame them if they did it.
4. A player in the transformation
Gail Burton / Associated Press
One day, when we all come back on the acquisition of Le & # 39; Veon Bell by the Jets, I am confident that it will be considered one of the best signatures of autonomous players of all time. (Cc: @OldTakesExposed)
The reason why? Versatility.
People continue to significantly underestimate the quality of Bell. He covered over 1,200 rushing yards while adding more than 600 receiving yards in three of his five NFL seasons.
Jets head coach Adam Gase recently discussed this with Kimberly Jones of the NFL network.
"I love its variety," Gase said. "I like the fact that he can do it all. And the more I watch movies since we signed it, the more I tried not to tease myself too much by watching too much." movies.
"But since we signed it, I just prepared it and tried to understand what it did in Pittsburgh? You know, where do we get it? What can we do in the game of passes? What we have how do we somehow build this thing around Sam? [Darnold], him and some of the other pieces we have? So you know, it's been fun to watch, really go back and look at what he's done in the past. "
My prediction: Bell will transform the Jets attack as it did with that of Pittsburgh, and it will be fun to watch.
5. Well done, NFL, well played
Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images
The NFL has dropped the tradition of last year's Super Bowl winners opening the season instead of scheduling the Packers and Bears to kick things off Thursday night in September.
It's a brilliant gesture for a number of reasons.
The NFL enters its 100th season, so what better than to start with its oldest rivalry? And every time we see Aaron Rodgers play, it's a good thing. Not to mention, the Bears will be Super Bowl contenders.
It's also a smart initiative in public relations. Kraft's solicitation package may still be in public view in September, which would create hard times if the Patriots were to play in the opening game of the season.
6. the biggest
Billie Weiss / Getty Images
I've been covering the NFL for 25 years and I've never seen an end as tight, athletic and fast as Rob Gronkowski.
He announced his retirement on Sunday, and his numbers alone should consolidate him as Hall of Famer.
In 115 regular season games, Gronkowski recorded 521 receptions for 7,861 yards and 79 touchdowns. In 16 playoff games, he has 81 assists for 1,163 yards and 12 scores. As Mike Reiss of ESPN.com noted, all of these playoff marks are records for a tight game.
Much more data speaks of Gronk's greatness, but you understand the point. He also made it to 265 pounds.
More than a mere receiver, he was also an infernal blocker.
There was not much that Gronkowski could not do. As a result, the defenses had to mobilize considerable resources to defend it. It's not like Tom Brady needed help, but Gronkowski opened the New England offensive.
Gronkowski will be remembered for many things, but most of all, we should remember him as the best tight end of all time.
7. The more things change, the more they stay the same
Jim Rogash / Getty Images
Now that Gronk has called it a career, how are the Patriots going to adapt?
When you lose a player of his caliber, it hurts. But we have already seen this song with New England. Now we can sing all the lyrics perfectly.
They have lost a long list of quality players and it is useless to recite it. But as always, they will adapt and continue to win.
None of us should be surprised to hear this familiar melody again next season.
8. Each image tells a story
Mark Dalton @CardsMarkD
Say cheese: NFL head coaches pose for the group photo at the league's annual meeting at Biltmore in AZ https://t.co/n2PO6Ml4U5
NFL owners, general managers and coaches are meeting this week in Phoenix. Among rule changes and addresses of the state of the team, participants meet to spend a little time. To commemorate, they usually take group photos.
Although they are supposed to be camaraderie portraits, you do not need to look too closely to see that they represent something more.
Mark Dalton, Senior Vice President of Media Relations for Cardinals, tweeted this photo Senior NFL coaches. The lack of diversity was very striking. (The Steelers head coach, Mike Tomlin, who was African-American, was not present.)
Earlier that day, Adam Schefter of ESPN tweeted a photo General Directors of the league. The lack of diversity was, well, even more striking.
The league knows that its lack of diversity among coaches and general managers is a problem. These images highlight how serious this problem is.
9. The club ACL
Many NFL players suffer from tears every season, but it is still amazing to see all these names on one list.
The ACL Recovery Club Twitter Account compiled every 53 torn ACLs that NFL players have suffered in 2018.
ACL Recovery Club @ACLrecoveryCLUB
There were 53 ACLs torn in the 2018 NFL season. Here is the list of all players ? https://t.co/GKkmQhQRNy
There are no conclusions to draw here. With about 1,700 players in the NFL, 53 ripped ACLs might not be much.
Nevertheless, it still reminds us how brutal the game is. It's something to think about next time someone will be upset by a player's contract.
10. Look at this now
If you are in delicate interactions, then follow my example and watch this again and again. I promise you to laugh every time.
And if you do not like the delicate interactions, the look on Belichick remains unique.
Mike Freeman covers the NFL for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter: @mikefreemanNFL.