Oh babyyyy, the 172-day wait for NFL football officially ended Thursday as the preseason finally kicked off in Canton, Ohio. The new campaign offers the opportunity for new expectations, new highs, new lows, broken records, the creation of Super Bowl dreams and for 31 of 32 teams, crushing devastation when you realize it’s not the year of your team.
The first pre-season game took place last night as the Las Vegas Raiders took on the Jacksonville Jaguars with the Raiders emerging 27-11 winners.
In the weeks leading up to the regular season, we’ll wrap up five stories from across the NFL, both on and off the field. Without further ado, let’s get started…
Deshaun Watson suspended for six games after sexual misconduct verdict
The cloud hanging over Deshaun Watson’s NFL future appeared to be dissipating with no more than a light downpour after reports surfaced that he would only receive a six-game ban. For someone who has been accused of sexual misconduct by 24 different women, a ban that translates to 0.2 missed games per count was shamefully and disrespectfully small and it appears NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell shares the same opinion. Latest reports say the ban will be appealed as they seek to make it indefinite on the grounds that he violated the league’s personal conduct policy.
Dolphins owner Stephen Ross banned and draft picks withdrawn after ‘tampering’ case
The Miami Dolphins are left with a 2023 first-round draft pick and a 2024 fourth-round draft pick while owner Stephen Ross is $1.5 million short after the NFL fined Ross and to his candor for approaching quarterback Tom Brady while still in New England. , as well as Super Bowl-winning coach Sean Payton during his time with the New Orleans Saints.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell had this to say about it: “Investigators have uncovered tampering violations of unprecedented scope and severity. I know of no previous example of a team breaching the ban on tampering with both a head coach and a star player, to the potential detriment of several other clubs, over a period of years. Likewise, I know of no previous case where the property was so directly implicated in the violations. »
Cooper Kupp impressed with Justin Jefferson’s claims as Vikings’ ‘NFL’s best receiver’
Los Angeles Rams receiver Cooper Kupp was impressed with Justin Jefferson’s confidence and self-confidence after the Vikings receiver declared that after this season he would be “the best receiver in the NFL”.
“I think that’s the beauty of this game. I think it’s a testament to how competitive this league is. If you don’t present yourself as the best and you don’t work to be the best, then I would be concerned about step onto the pitch with you if you don’t feel like you’re ready to be the best player you can be.”
Kupp himself became the first player since 2006 to win the Triple Crown when he topped the charts in catches, receiving yards and touchdowns, totaling 145 receptions, 1,947 receiving yards, 16 receiving touchdowns . Jefferson meanwhile had 108 receptions, 1,616 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns. He also currently holds the record for most receiving yards for a player in his first two seasons with an impressive 3,016. Let’s see what this year has in store for the former LSU wide.
Matthew Stafford suffers from ‘pitcher’s elbow’ ahead of new campaign
Reports from the Los Angeles Rams camp indicate that their Super Bowl-winning quarterback, Matthew Stafford, is dealing with a persistent problem with “bad tendinitis,” also known as a pitcher’s elbow. Struggling with it since the spring, the injury could prove to be a significant problem for the Rams if Stafford is unable to shake it off before the new season. The Rams host the Buffalo Bills on September 8 in the season opener.
Pittsburgh Steelers Diontae Johnson gets paid
Diontae Johnson and the Pittsburgh Steelers have agreed to a contract extension worth $36.71 million, with $27 million guaranteed. Johnson had a much better year in 2021, with 107 catches, 1,161 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. He becomes the latest receiver to receive a new contract along with Deebo Samuel of the 49ers and DK Metcalf of Seattle, both signing new deals last week.