Tag Archive | "New Orleans Saints"

Billy Yerman and Nestor preview the Ravens vs. Saints game

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Billy Yerman and Nestor preview the Ravens vs. Saints game

Posted on 18 November 2014 by WNST Staff

Nestor caught up with Billy Yerman from Continental Title Company to preview the Ravens vs. Saints game. New Orleans has scuffled lately losing its most recent game to the Bengals 27-10. The Ravens look to take advantage of a struggling team as they head to New Orleans on Monday night. LISTEN HERE.

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Dennis Koulatsos joins Nestor to recap NFL week 11

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Dennis Koulatsos joins Nestor to recap NFL week 11

Posted on 18 November 2014 by WNST Staff

Dennis Koulatsos joins Nestor to break down another wild weekend around the NFL. With the Steelers pulling out a comeback victory over Tennessee last night, it’s the Ravens turn to answer the bell heading to New Orleans. LISTEN HERE.

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Chris Pika talks all things NFL football

Posted on 17 November 2014 by WNST Staff

Chris Pika, NFL insider, joined Nestor to discuss the struggles of the entire NFC South. With a lowly 4 wins, the Atlanta Falcons are currently in first place. The Ravens look to help contribute to Atlanta holding onto that lead with a win Sunday in New Orleans. LISTEN HERE.

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Mutiny On The Bounty-Gate

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Mutiny On The Bounty-Gate

Posted on 06 November 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

If  you think that you’re having a tough 2012, look no further than to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for some perspective. Goodell’s 2012 has been terrible, and from the looks of things 2013 isn’t set to begin much better for the embattled commish.

After dealing with a labor lockout, and officials lockout, a rash of concussion related lawsuits and an over the top level of professional disdain from nearly every player with whom Goodell has had to deal, the commissioner is still entrenched in the midst of the controversy that won’t go away as the league continues to try and find their way through bounty gate.

 

While the suspended players’ plights are still tied up in the appeals process, thereby continuing to add life to this story we are bombarded with reminders of one of the league’s uglier scandals; a scandal that most would have imagined would be well in the league’s rear view by now. There’s still no real assurance that anyone, aside from Saints former defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, current assistant (and interim head coach) Joe Vitt, and GM Mickey Loomis will ever actually be punished for their roles in the scandal.

 

One would have to imagine that there’s a very real possibility that at some point soon if notorious whistle blower Anthony Hargrove doesn’t find employment in the NFL he’ll be looking to raise his complaint to defamation and attempt to prove a conspiracy that has blackballed from the league as a result of his role in the investigation. And now, as a result of a voided contract by the commissioner’s office, it appears that Saints head coach Sean Payton might come out of his “punishment” in better shape than ever.

 

Like Peyton Manning last year, Sean Payton’s absence in 2012 is serving as little more than an illustration of just how important he was to the Saints organization, and a reinforcement of his value. Now like Manning too, Payton will find himself a free agent at the end of his suspension, able to sell his services to the highest bidder. Unlike Manning, there are no health issues related to Payton that might have teams reluctant to take a chance on signing him.

 

So now, as punishment for standing by their man, the Saints will be likely forced to pay a king’s ransom just to match the efforts of other clubs anxious to attract the hottest commodity in coaching once the bidding process can officially begin.

 

It hardly seems fair that the Saints and their fans have been punished for the wayward culture that Payton and his minions presided over while Payton himself will likely come out on the other side of things better than ever. It’s tough to imagine this was the commissioner’s ‘intent, but it continues to be his mess.

 

 

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MSB Trend Report: Who’s Storming the Court and Who’s Courting the Storm?

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MSB Trend Report: Who’s Storming the Court and Who’s Courting the Storm?

Posted on 06 March 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

Here’s the MobTown Sports Beat, Tuesday Trend Report. It’s our appraisal of who’s balling and who’s falling in the world of “sports futures”.

 

 

Five on the Rise – Here’s who’s balling

 

 

Deron Williams

 

As everyone focuses on Dwight Howard and where his fortunes may lead him after this season (or at the trade deadline) the Nets are just quietly hoping that they’ll be able to retain Deron Williams, and use the allure of his services to land Howard too. Williams however seems intent on testing the waters of free agency, and may feel compelled to return home to Dallas and join the Mavericks or to land wherever he sees the best chance at winning and being happy. On the way there, Williams is showcasing all of the reasons why he should be the hottest commodity headed to free agency at season’s end.

 

After helping to jumpstart Lin-Sanity in its early stages, Williams responded to the hype in his second chance against the Lin led Knicks with 38 points and 6 assists. Since then Williams has handed out 8, 12, 8 and 7 assists in his last 4 games respectively, the last accompanying an incredibly efficient 57 points against the Charlotte Bobcats.

 

Williams is clearly peaking at just the right time.

 

 

Peyton Manning

 

As the Colts brace for the most anticlimactic $28 million decision in history, it seems that the Manning camp is at least giving them something to think about. Over the last day or so, allegedly unauthorized video of Manning throwing at Duke University has mysteriously surfaced, showing the QB’s arm and skills in a good light. It’s inconceivable that the latest “news” has done anything to sway the Colts’ decision, nor should it, but it’s at least an indication that Manning is on a better course than some have suggested to this point.

 

 

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The Ledge

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The Ledge

Posted on 05 March 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

When great expectations and poor performances collide, fans, coaches and even players find themselves at the ledge. That uneasy place where the temperature is always rising and the sky is always falling. Here’s a look at who’s on the ledge this week:

 

 

The Saints

 

The Saints are on the ledge over what is quickly coming to be known as “Bounty-Gate”, alleging that defensive coordinator Gregg Williams and his players and subordinates coordinated a program that rewarded game changing defensive plays of both the legal and illegal variety. Not only is it a circumvention of salary cap rules, more importantly it’s a reward for the type of violence that the NFL has been punishing its players especially hard for over the last few years. The league will be heavily scrutinized over how they choose to punish this, and the ramifications could likely affect Williams current job with the Rams, his former team in Washington and of course the Saints. Punishment is likely to be harsh and swift on this one. Until then, Williams, the Saints, the Redskins, Sean Payton and many others will wait at the ledge.

 

 

UCLA and Ben Howland

 

Last week’s Sports Illustrated expose of Howland’s hands off approach and the out of control program that resulted won’t be the only reason he’ll likely be gone at season’s end, but it will surely be the easiest. Just a few short seasons ago Howland and UCLA had the Final Four looking like their birthright and Howland himself looked ready to challenge John Calipari as the master of the “one and done” player. Now on the brink of their second straight season out of the tourney looking in, Howland is likely counting down his final days and final paychecks and Reeves Nelson, the villain of the SI Story, looks ready to challenge Chris Washburn in the annals of college hoops stars behaving badly.

 

 

Mavs Fans

 

They may not be there for long, but by now Mavs fans have surely realized what the rest of us have been seeing all along this season. That is that the Mavs are making a less than genuine, borderline fraudulent effort at defending their title. Now that the euphoria of last year’s championship has had some time to wear off and Lamar Odom’s welcome has had time to wear out, it’s time to concede that in allowing Tyson Chandler, Caron Butler, JJ Barea, DeShawn Stevenson and others to walk and replacing them with Odom, Vince Carter, Delonte West and Yi amongst others, this season was over before it started in Dallas.

 

Maybe the gamble will pay off in Dallas and they’ll land Deron Williams and/or Dwight Howard in free agency. This year though, the Mavs are making the least genuine effort at a title defense that the NBA has possibly ever seen.

 

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Whatever the max punishment is for the Saints — double it

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Whatever the max punishment is for the Saints — double it

Posted on 03 March 2012 by Drew Forrester

I realize opinions are like – well, you know what…everyone has one.

But if your opinion is that the New Orleans Saints shouldn’t be punished or penalized for their “Bounty System” then something’s terribly wrong with the way you look at things.

The NFL should throw the book at the Saints, whatever “the book” is.  In fact, whatever the maximum penalty turns out to be, I say double it.

You simply can’t have players in the league creating a bonus structure for injuring other players.  There’s more to it than that, but it really is that easy to preside over if you’re the NFL and the task at hand is determining the gravity of the situation and the penalty for pulling it off for a couple of seasons.

It’s simply unacceptable.

Please don’t make excuses for the Saints…or anyone else in the league who has been guilty of this conduct.

Don’t make excuses for them by saying, “Football is a physical game”.  Or “We like to see those hard hits every Sunday”.  Or “The money doesn’t really change anything, they’re trying to punish each other on every play anyway.”

None of those words pave the way for putting a system in place where players are rewarded for helping to remove an opposing player from the game.

It’s essentially a locker room “prop bet”.  ”Maybe we can’t bet on the outcome of today’s game, but we can put some money up for the first guy to take out the opposing quarterback.”

It’s not gambling, but it’s close enough that the league most certainly could lump it in there with wagering.

And let’s not even mention what happens when the Federal Government gets wind of this and decides to make a big deal about the taxes that weren’t paid on that “income” laying around in the locker room.

But, there’s one element of this that no one has yet talked about that makes rewarding players for injuring other players a reprehensible act.

If they’re doing it in the NFL, it won’t be long before they’re doing it in college.  And if they’re doing it in the NFL and college, it won’t be long before it filters down to the high school level.

I went to a pair of high school playoff basketball games this past week.  I had to laugh out loud at the pre-game introductions of both teams (all four, if you count the two games).  Long gone are the days where they announce the player, his number and what year of school he’s in.  No, no, no.  Now, every starter has his own unique “intro welcome”, where a non-starter stands out on the floor and welcomes the starter when he’s announced by doing a fist-bump, two hand slaps, a quick body-search (as if the police were “frisking” him) and then a big chest bump.  All of that is done in a well-rehearsed routine.  And every player has a different one of those.

Do you know where those kids picked that up from?

College.

I wonder where the college kids learned it?

You can guarantee yourself this:  If the NFL is handing out money for big hits or “cart-offs”, it won’t be long before high schoolers are doing something similar, even if they don’t have money at their disposal.  Teen-agers are extremely creative.  They’ll figure out something to put on the table.  Weed, perhaps?  Or “beer money”, the equivalent of one dollar per-kid in the locker room.

How about this concept:  Maybe an enterprising coach comes along – say a coach who also doubles as a gym, math or science teacher – and starts handing out A’s if the other team’s star player doesn’t finish the game.

If you think high school coaches and players are above shenanigans like that, you’re living in a cave.

It looks like the NFL has the Saints dead-to-rights on this one.  I can’t imagine there’s a “chain of custody” excuse in the offing that will somehow make this out to be less of an offense than it is.

Financially rewarding a player for injuring another player is just about the worst thing you can do in all of sports.

These are fathers of children, husbands of women and good, upstanding members of their community.  Having to spend the rest of their life in a wheelchair because someone wanted to scoop up $1,500 after a helmet to helmet hit is unthinkable, yet it’s exactly the kind of result that’s possible when players are intent on injuring someone else.

It’s unacceptable.

Let’s hope the NFL does the right thing and throws the book AND the kitchen sink at the Saints.

And let’s all hope and pray that this sort of barbaric behavior doesn’t somehow trickle down to the high school level, where kids and coaches are already losing sight of the real purpose of athletics.

 

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NFL Playoff Positional Power Rankings

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NFL Playoff Positional Power Rankings

Posted on 05 January 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

Here’s a look at my positional power rankings for the players and teams that are left in the playoffs. This year’s stats accounted for a lot but at the end of the day it’s my opinion on who I’d suit up today for the best chance at winning.

Quarterbacks

 

1 – Aaron Rodgers (GB)

2 – Drew Brees (NO)

3 – Tom Brady (NE)

4 – Eli Manning (NYG)

5 – Matthew Stafford (DET)

6 – Matt Ryan (ATL)

 

* I gave 6 here since the first 3 were fairly obvious (if not their respective places in that top 3)

 

 

Running Backs

 

1 – Ray Rice (BAL)

2 – Arian Foster (HOU)

3 – Michael Turner (ATL)

4 – Frank Gore (SF)

5 – Darren Sproles (NO)

 

 

Wide Receivers

 

1 – Calvin Johnson (DET)

2 – Andre Johnson (HOU)

3 – AJ Green (CIN)

4 – Victor Cruz (NYG)

5 – Wes Welker (NE)

6 – Roddy White (ATL)

7 – Greg Jennings (GB)

8 – Jordy Nelson (GB)

9 – Mike Wallace (PIT)

10 – Hakeem Nicks (NYG)

 

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Washington Redskins v Baltimore Ravens

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Don’t Believe the AFC North Hype…Yet

Posted on 03 January 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

 

Of all of the changes that the NFL has brought forth in the last couple of seasons, one that went without a great deal of notice has certainly had a profound impact so far. The line that teams have walked all too often in recent seasons after wrapping up playoff fortunes with games still remaining on their schedule has been too much of a story lately, but this year not so much. Whether a direct result of the decision to put divisional match-ups in the season’s final weeks or not it made for one of the most exciting final weeks of any NFL season in recent memory. Add “Goodell’s Grand Finale” to the once celebrated “Pete’s Parity” and you have the excitement that was week 17 of this NFL season.

The Ravens run through their own division unblemished is cause for celebration, and with 3 teams qualified for this year’s playoffs the AFC North is being hailed as the league’s best division. The Bengals are young and dangerous, and now stocked with picks courtesy of the Carson Palmer trade, the Browns are tough and physical and also stocked with picks courtesy of the Julio Jones trade and perhaps in better position than any team to trade into the first overall pick if the Colts should choose to shop it. And the Ravens and Steelers are simply the Ravens and Steelers. But before we proclaim the AFC North the class of the NFL, we should at least acknowledge that parity is more relative from division to division than league wide, and that the AFC North may simply be the most accomplished division in football because they had the easiest trek though the 2011 season.

 

You never can quite tell how teams will be from season to season in the NFL, but sometimes you can. While every year brings a fresh example of a team with no expectations suddenly becoming a force on the back of a few “minor” tweaks to the coaching staff, roster or approach, we should also acknowledge that those examples aren’t as plentiful as the attention that they get would suggest, and that more often than not we have a pretty good idea going into the season who’ll be good and who’ll struggle.

 

If you were picking a schedule for the Ravens or any AFC North team to have success in 2011, and charged with using the NFL formula of matching up against 1 whole division in the AFC and 1 in the NFC you probably would have picked the AFC South and the NFC West. Surely you would have picked the NFC West as maybe one or two teams in that less than mediocre division could have been expected to be competitive (as the 49ers became this year’s surprise team) but expecting the entire division to have a resurgence would have been unfathomable, as the division has been floundering for years now without improvement.

 

The AFC South would have looked almost equally ripe for the picking even before Peyton Manning was announced to be out for the season, and despite the Texans best attempts at representing the division respectably, injuries ultimately took their toll on them too.

 

Add the bottom dwelling Cleveland Brown to the mix and the formula was just right for the successes of the Ravens, Steelers and Bengals. The Browns are scrappy and can’t be totally dismissed, but they did play their divisional schedule to the tune of 0-6 this season, serving up 2 wins each of cushion for the division’s other 3 teams.

 

In 2010 the NFC South had 3 double digit win teams. The Falcons won 13 games, the Saints won 11 and both made the playoffs and the Buccaneers picked up 10 wins and narrowly missed the playoffs while looking promising. They did so while matching up against the terrible NFC West, and an AFC North with 2 bottom dwellers in Cincinnati and Cleveland that offered up “easy” chances at racking up wins. The NFC South also had the floundering Panthers in 2010 who served up 6 wins to the rest of the division in struggling through a miserable campaign themselves.

 

This year the NFC South still looks relatively strong although slightly less promising beyond the top two as they were charged with matching up with an NFC North that was better than last year’s NFC West draw but also took advantage of this year’s weaker AFC South.

 

In 2008 the AFC East and NFC East both looked equally promising as both took advantage of similar scheduling “opportunities”.

 

Next year the AFC North will be afforded the opportunity to feast of the AFC West if they’re able to take advantage, and if the NFC is in the disarray that it appears to be in all of a sudden there too may lie an opportunity. While I won’t yet acknowledge the AFC North as football’s best division, the likelihood of them getting 3 teams into the playoffs again next season (especially if the Browns serve up another 6 wins) might look pretty good again. What they do once they’re there will determine which division is best.

 

 

 

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NFL Week 8 Locks, Lumps & Luck (or Lack Thereof)

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NFL Week 8 Locks, Lumps & Luck (or Lack Thereof)

Posted on 28 October 2011 by Thyrl Nelson

This is not an inducement to gamble, in fact it should serve as quite the opposite. It is my attempt at picking all of the games (before injury reports are official) each week. The picks are broken into 3 categories, 5 picks that I love, 5 that I like and the rest.

I would encourage anyone looking for a little extra interest in Sunday’s game to try the MobTown $15.70 prop card. It’s free it’s easy and cash and bragging rights are on the line.

 

All lines taken from sportsbook.com.

 

Loves (100 pts for a win and -110 for a loss)

week 7: 2-3 (-130 pts)    season: 13-12 (-20 pts) 

 

Saints -14 @ Rams 

 

Lions -3 @ Broncos

 

Steelers +3 vs. Patriots

 

Browns +9 @ 49ers

 

Chiefs +4 vs. Chargers

 

 

Likes (50 pts for a win and -55 for a loss)

week 7: 2-2-1 (-10 pts)    season: 10-12-1 (-160 pts)

 

Panthers -3.5 vs. Vikings

 

Dolphins +9.5 @ Giants

 

Bills -6 vs. Redskins

 

Bengals -3 @ Seahawks

 

Cowboys +3.5  @ Eagles

 

 

Feeling Lucky? (20 pts for a win and -22 for a loss)

Week 7: 1-2(-24 pts)    season 9-10-2 (-40 pts)

 

Titans -9 vs. Colts

 

Jaguars +9.5 @ Texans

 

Ravens -12.5 vs. Cardinals

  

Last week Total: 5-7-1  (-164 pts)     Season Total: 32-34-3 (-220 pts)

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