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The Around the NFL podcast. It needs a sleepover at Mark's Man Cave. Welcome to another edition of Around the NFL. My name is Dan Hansis, and I got heroes here, Greg Rosenthal and Mark Sesler. Sesler, you got a man cave? I've been to your place. I don't recall there being a dedicated man cave, nor have I ever seen you as a man that would go Man Cave, if given the opportunity.


I think you could reference the whole place as that from some angle. But no, within the apartment, I don't have a room that would be called Classically a Man Cave at the moment. But before the show, if you're on YouTube, you're talking about my background that looks a little Spartan, could use a little bit of help. So the place is in development, I'd say.


And Greg, because Greg is going to Greg, and he was labeling it as constructive criticism, and that certainly was not what I was going. I was offering a suggestion that maybe your remote background, that's what we're doing the show remote for the next couple of days, that it maybe could use a touch of color on the wall. I thought that would go a long way. Not a criticism, merely unsolicited advice/suggestion.


I did not take it purely as critique. I understand what Greg was attempting to accomplish there verbally, but I didn't fall for that either. So point and pointer taken. I look at my own setup, and it does look... It looks a little suspect. It could use just a little bit of life. I'm going to work on that this offseason.


It's not normal criticism, though. It's constructive criticism. That's the gentleman's criticism. If he's a man, a man, manly enough to even have a man cave, he can take some constructive criticism.


Yeah, I just don't like the C-word. But I don't have a man cave, so maybe I can't take the criticism. But in this case, I can.


And lest we forget, I mean, silly me. Not only does Mark have a man cave, he has an entire Super Bowl segment based around it.


That's true, and that went very well.


Now it's time for a trip to Mark's man cave. Brought to you by Devlin McGregor. I forgot that Devlin McGregor, the Crooked Pharmaceutical giant from the Fugitive, sponsored your segment.


Well, the greatest part of that segment beyond the fact that I have-They switched the samples. I have no memory of it because of the state of my health that day, but that Denzel Ward and Miles Garrett were not wearing the cans, so they couldn't even hear any of that.


Greg, I'll never forget the anxiety coursing through Mark in addition to the germs due to his illness ahead of that interview with two Browns' greats. And speaking of anxiety, I want to bring in the person on today's show. You know her, you love her, you've missed her. Connie Wolf. Connie's the Queen.


She is the Queen of NFL Media.


That's how I get brought in. Speaking of anxiety, great.


How you been, Colleen? Anything new going on in the last couple of weeks? Oh my God. You know what?


No, I've just been laying real low, real low, just chilling. A lot of just not doing anything, really.


I can't wait until we write the Around the NFL memoir. That's all I'm going to say. But it's so good to see you.


It's so great to be back. Guys, I've missed you. I'm preparing for a soft launch of the summer of Connie, and then we'll go into full swing right after the draft. So these are big months. A huge lead up to what's going to be an amazing summer.


Are you doing the draft night stage thing again? That's a big spot. Draft night stage thing.


That's nice. That's exactly what they call it. I will be in Detroit on stage for night one. Then I wanted to do day three because they're doing puppy adoptions. I've never done day three before, so I'm going to skip night two and then stay for all of the shenanigans on day three.


Are we going to maybe leave there with a puppy?


I don't know how I don't leave without a puppy, so we're going to see what happens. But I'm going to probably get my pick of the litter since I'll be with them backstage. And that's my dream, is to just be in a green room with a bunch of puppies.


That sounds great. And then will the inevitable party at your compound occur? How many hours after you return from the draft, roughly?


Minutes, moments, seconds. It already starts on the flight home.


My My beloved dog, Captain, who's now about 16, 17 months old. But shortly before Christmas '22, Emily and I went to this... I should give them a shout out because they do really great work here in terms of serving as a foster home for pets here in the South Bay and in the Los Angeles area. But we went over to this couple's home, and there they were in the laundry It was Captain as a three-week-old puppy, and then three other siblings of his. It was a female puppy and then three males. Here's the one advice I'll give, Connie. Okay. We picked Captain. Initially, we wanted to get the girl dog, but she was totally insane. Emily wanted to get a girl, but she was nuts. Then you could tell she was the Pied Piper and she was a maniac. We're like, All right, I love the dog, but we can't pick it. The other two dogs Things were various levels of overactive. Captain, as a puppy, was chilling way in the back and hiding and acting really low key. We were like, That's the puppy we want. But I'll tell you something, Connie. We got that little bastard home, and immediately he morphed to the other two brothers.


Total maniac. We wouldn't have them any differently, but they are smart enough even as puppies to con you and sell you. So just beware.


Can I ask you a question, though, Dan?


You think he was caught in you? He just wasn't tired at the moment because he just did something.


Greg, I am telling you, dude, that dog was straight up acting to separate himself from the pack. He is a very intelligent canine, so I really give him that benefit of the doubt.


Wait, can I ask you a question? Is it possible, and this is a theory, and we don't always agree with each other's theories, and it's also not a critique. Oswald acted alone. Go on. It's not a critique. But is it possible that Captain is maybe a little less or maybe a little more emotionally dense and wasn't aware, like the other three dogs, that the His siblings were about to be separated, where the other three are reacting. Then Captain gets home and realizes he no longer has his siblings. I'll tell you what, Mark.


I love you, buddy, but I don't need a cat guy telling me anything about the nature of the dog, an advanced species.


I'm asking. I didn't tell you. I'm asking the question, and it was constructive criticism, as Greg would say, or just a question.


Dan, I was trying to find the rescue because you said it to me before and was telling me that's after Blitzan. I was actually looking at that rescue a bunch. They have the cuteest dogs, but I can't find it now.


But I will tell you that Dasha did-I'm going to text my wife and we're going to get it. All right, let's get on track. We got a good app today. We're going to talk about front offices, GMs, coaches with pop, owners, obviously, the decision-makers of the organizations that dot the NFL, who's under the most heading into draft weekend. But before that, we're going to hit some news. Let's get caught up. Now, third down in 13. Blitz coming. Press got able to get out of the end zone, and now airs it out for Lamb. He's gone. When he gets there, it's a countdown, Cowboys on top. Ceed Lamb from 92 yards out. Although I do, and we're going to get to the NFL conquering the days of the week, again, in a few minutes. But I really do enjoy those late regular seasons, Saturday night games where Daddy can have a couple of Titos, my sons are with me, we don't get to watch football enough due to the nature of our jobs. When a really exciting play happens like that, it electrifies the house. Everyone knows that listens to this part, I Love Me Some Seedy Lamp.


In what was a brilliant season, that game, he was an absolute monster. Now the Cowboys are dealing with the repercussions of him being a monster because you got to pay them like a God.


I'm still a little stuck on you calling yourself our Daddy, but I do want to move on because that highlight, I think, was the first time this offseason that I saw a highlight from the season. For the few weeks afterwards, I I got to admit, seeing highlights from the season, it almost gives me the chills. Like, oh, remember that back then? It was just like you were in a totally different mindset. But now, teams have showed up. They've started working out. Football is back. I was excited to see an NFL highlight there. Let's go.


Mark is going to reach through your monitor and put an end to your jugular.


They're working out. We got Kirk Cousins doing interviews in the Falcon's facility. They're there. Football is back.


All right. We just lost Colleen. Hopefully, we'll get her back. Connie has technical difficulties from time to time on these remote shows, but hopefully, we'll get Colleen back. If we don't, it was great seeing her, and she'll be back soon enough. Let's get into the CeeD Lamb story here, which is, I don't know if I'd call it thorny, but it's on the radar, and it's worth talking about. The Dallas Morning News reported that there is, quote, NFL precedent for CeeD Lamb not taking the field until he signs a contract He's entering the fifth and final year of his rookie deal, but he is one of the best wide receiver in football. We just talked about he's coming off an incredible season where he posted career highs in receptions, 135 receiving yards, 1749, TDs, 12. So he's a first-time All-Pro. He deserves a contract that matches that. And yet the Cowboys are just in slippery conditions here, Mark, with their salary cap, with what's going on with Micah Parsons with Dak Prescott. In some ways, it's a good problem to have, but also in other ways, you're seeing the challenges of a team with top flight stars bunched together.


Yeah. I mean, this stuff happens. There is a precedent. I like that word attached to this, but they've got to We've gotten to this point with those three players you mentioned, like Prescott, Parsons, and Lamb, where all of them need their contracts to be addressed. And for all the business and hype around the Cowboys, it just feels like bad business, a little bit disorganized, because these wide receivers each year get incrementally so much more expensive that you could have done this before. You could have found a way to do this before. The whole DAK thing, I'd say the same thing. It's like, quarterback wide receiver becoming incredibly inflated price-wise. And I think it's Lamb's prerogative to say, Look, I want to be paid like what I am, which is one of the top receivers in the league, and you're not going to have my services without that money. And if you look at what else they have on the depth chart, they don't really have another choice but to make it happen.


It's just part of the offseason playbook right now. Skipping offseason workouts, they're voluntary anyways. If he skips a mini camp or not, it's not that meaningful. If he starts taking into trading camp, again, that's part of the playbook. It's a catch-22 with this fifth-year option. You retain his rights longer than if he was a second-round pick, but they just never want to play on that fifth-year option. If they're the player that CeeD Lam is. He's made a total of $14 million in his four years, which is great money for a normal person, but for the level of production that he's had, it's minuscule. They will get the deal done. They don't have a ton of cap space. But I do think the Dak Prescott situation is looming over this that they, in my mind, are going to choose on some level to pay CeeD Lamb first and wait and see how Dak Prescott does this year. I think it's meaningful with the draft coming up because I just look at a fairly deep quarterback class, and I know they don't have a high pick. I just look at the model that the packers have shown.


To me, it's not crazy for the Cowboys to be considering taking a quarterback in this class. And part of that equation, I think, is CeeD Lamb is going to get his money. It's just a matter of time. We don't need to spend a crazy amount of time this offseason, even though I suspect it will go into training camp or something like that.


And this is... Cowboys are a victim of their own success. On some level, but also it's another reminder. And it's like, you saw the Diggs trade and the Bills in some ways, and you look at their roster and what they're doing now, they're trying to reload on the fly with the star quarterback. The Cowboys had their window. They had it. When you hit on Parsons, Lamb, and Dak, you had that three or four years where that's when you go and you win Super Bowl, and they weren't able to get over the hub in the NFC. It doesn't mean that they can't contend for the Super Bowl again, even this year. But now it's getting increasingly more difficult. Parsons is a top five, maybe even top three player, maybe the number one player at his position. Lamb, you can make the same case for his position. These are two of the highest paid positions in the sport. Then Dak, maybe not top five, but probably a top 10 quarterback, and he's a QB, so that's the highest paid position in the sport. So it's almost a perfect storm, Mark, which I'm less being feeling critical of the Cowboys, but that they didn't get the job done winning, and now they have to find a way to pay these three dudes at the most expensive price tags in the sport.


It's impossible.


Yeah. I think there's no way to really shapeshift the message to not say that Dallas has had an awkward, unpredictable, strange offseason. That, I guess, to start, goes against the actual messaging of what they claim to be this offseason. I'm with Greg, though. I mean, we can let this one go until he gets paid. The Chris Jones holdout last year was one of the rare ones where a star isn't there when the season starts. I typically just tend to think these things get ironed out, but they're in a thorny spot.


Yeah. I think the story here is not the idea of, will CeeDee land play for the Cowboys? Will he show up? And more just the bigger picture situation around the Cowboys.


He said, by the way, to TMZ, I'll be in Dallas, which was a clever non-answer He was like, Yeah, you'll be in Dallas. He lived there. But he wasn't saying he was showing up to practice necessarily.


Yeah. Pars that, Harvey Levin. All right. In other news, we told you, NFL won. They've defeated days of the week. There's no longer any issue. You could play an NFL game whenever you want. And issues with competition, be damned. There will be a way and a streaming platform that will air it. And let's talk about week one. It's going to have a new wrinkle. There's a lot of wrinkles with the schedule now because everything's been blown wide open. The Eagles will play the NFL's first game in Brazil to kick off 2024. And yes, they will do it on a Friday night. So now we get the Thursday night opener. We're going to We're going to have a... This is the Brazilian national anthem, by the way. We're going to have Thursday night opener. We're going to have Friday night. We're going to have a dozen games on Sunday and then games on Monday. So you do the math. That's four out of seven in one week of football. So the Eagles last played an international game in 2018, will face a to be announced opponent in São Paulo, Friday, September sixth, the day after the NFL season kicks off on Thursday night.


So it will be the NFL's first Friday game on an opening weekend in more than 50 years. Mark, what was happening 50 years ago when they last played?


I mean, I was born 50 years ago, so I think that was probably one of the bigger news items in the country.


Yeah, I was just saying it was in your life cycle, not Greg and I, so I didn't know if you knew who were the teams.


Did they have TV back then? Did you watch it?


There was a form of television back in the early '70s, Greg.


Roger Goodell had this to say, by the way, We are just incredibly enthusiastic about our growth on a global basis. Samesies.


Yeah. I was curious because I saw our frequent guest, Andrew Marshawn, ask the question, Is the NFL even popular in Brazil? And I know it is popular to some degree, but I wasn't sure as much. But the NFL says that Brazil has the third most amount of fans in the entire world. Number one, US, number two, Mexico. They credit 30 million fans in Brazil. Now, it's not a huge part of our audience because of the language barrier, but bring it on, Brazilians. We're sending you a good game. It shows how much we respect Brazil to give them Packers eagles. I mean, that might be the best primetime game of week one.


I also read You said that actually in Brazil, that the packers, they probably looked into this, have one of the biggest fan fit. The teams, the packers, are the second or third most popular team there. But, Dan, you said that they can play games any day. There is this age-old rule out there called the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961, which happened before I was born. But you are not allowed to play a game on Friday as of the second Friday in September. So what they've done is they've They found these calendar openings where because Labor Day is happening on September first, second, or third, you can squeeze it in there. And they've noted that the other years that are eligible would be 2025, 2029, 2030, and 2031. So They're not going to... They can't do Friday night every night, but when they find their way, they're going to squeeze it in there and disrupt your weekend, Dan. We'll see.


We'll see, Mark.


That was good reporting, though, by Mark. Sounded like a challenge, Mark. I got it. I didn't know all that, and I think it was valuable to anyone making plans for 2029.I.


Could see the league office burning thatSounds like you just challenged them on days. That sounds like you just challenged them on days. That's sports act, too.


All right. And thank you guys for giving me that information, an updated information about their opponent. That is exciting. Moving on. Josh Allen. No, the other Josh Allen, the one that plays for the Jaguars, gets paid. He agrees to a new five-year, $150 million deal, makes him one of the highest paid There is at his position in the league. It is a contract that includes $88 million guaranteed, and it replaces the franchise tag that he was playing under that was set to pay him a little more than $24 A million. Greggy Allen coming off his second Pro-ball trip in five years. He is coming off a perfectly-timed breakout year where he had 17.5 sacks, 66 tackles, two force fumbles, an interception, big-time player, They nailed the draft pick. Remember when he came into the league, he was like, Oh, it's another Josh Allen. Is this the right play? And it turned out to be, Yes, the right play.


He's a classic example of a first-round pick that was a big win, a B plus, A minus that wasn't a superstar, but better than the average and got better and better and developed, I think, in times his best season for his contract year. It just reminds me how important self-scouting and getting ahead of all these contracts are because they could They could have paid him so much less a year ago. They could have paid him this contract months ago, and then they could have kept Calvin Ridley, but they couldn't because then the franchise tag wasn't available, and he ended up being able to squeeze him. It's a good thing, though, for players, franchise tag players, we saw with Kyle Ducker earlier this week, are getting their long term money, which is how it's intended to be used. But these quieter contracts, like the Eagles, for instance, with Dickerson and Mylata, who are doing it years ahead, those are the teams that smart. They're saving money in the long run because this is pretty wild. I think it's 76 fully guaranteed, 88. He's getting that money. It's not backloaded at all. He actually has a chance to play a lot of this contract, I think, by the looks of it.


And it links to exactly what we were just saying about Micah Parsons. It's exactly what Dallas has to look at and say, Oh, we're going to have to top that. And you're right, seven of nine tag players have gotten contracts, and quicker than they would have in other situations. So I like that part of it. And the Jaguars needed to do this. I mean, Calvin Ridley is not to me like a star wide receiver, but they are letting players go. And you're watching the AFC south, the Texans, specifically, turn into a firestorm, and you got a wait and see on what Anthony Richardson makes the cult. So it's like the Jaguars who, 600 days ago, were a really sexy new operation in the AFC, are now maybe the second or third, at least the second best team in the south, maybe the third.


I was going to say, Hold It was a bad thought, but it was too late. We'll talk about the Jaguars a little bit later, potentially.


Are we going to have a Balki off? I mean, our multiple co-hosts here.


Don't be ridiculous. All right, finally in the news, guys, God, if there's one person out there that got that reference, please hit me up on social media. I did.


I enjoyed it.


Go ahead.


I don't want to spell it out for the listeners out there that are big- Give me the letters. Balki Bartakomis, big-time fan. It depends. Okay.


The Bartaka heads out there? Anyway, finally in the news, Bill Belichick is about to enter an NFL season, not as a head coach or a coach of any kind. And that'll be the first time since 1974, which predates Mark Zesler?


No, it is I was on the Earth to witness the start of that career for Bill Belichick.


Man, this is like a whole fun game. Can we find an event in history where Mark wasn't alive. Anyway, 50 years, okay? And Belichick, though, is keeping busy. He recently spoke at Nebraska's annual coaching clinic. And The head coach is an old man, an old friend of the show, a guy that once stole Mark's heart at the NFL Scouting Combine at a tavern, a local steakhouse. It is Matt Rule. He did not well as a head coach in the NFL, but obviously, he's landed on his feet well. He was blown away by Bill Belichick's presence, his knowledge, his at this clinic. Let's listen to Rule, who also was very pointed in his commentary about Bill being out of work, and how is that possible? He is so smart, has seen so much, that he can make the complex so simple that it humbles you and embarrassed you. I was embarrassed. Just to understand how smart he is, how simple it was. He went four and a half hours just for the coaching. Forget the clinic. He came in and met with our coaching staff. And three and a half hours in, I was like, Coach, would you like a water, a coffee?


Would you like to use the restroom? Because I desperately had to use the restroom. And he's like, I'm fine, Matt. I was like, Yes, sir. And just sitting there and just talking working, and just his recall from things 15 years ago. The only reason why we don't get through more information is because he's having to slow down to make sure you understand what he's saying. So you We have this man who's a savant, who's been a defensive coordinator. He's been a special teams coordinator. He could be an offensive coordinator. He's been a head coach twice. He's been a GM person. He's talking about in a way that just illuminates things and makes things so simple that you're like, Oh, my goodness. I love that. I wish things worked out better from that rule because he seems like a good guy and a personable guy in the NFL. I saw some criticism out there that, Who cares what that guy says? He's terrible at his job. Okay, he was bad as a Panthers head coach, but he's clearly someone who respects the profession that's done it for a long time. And what he's telling you right there, does that sound like an over-the-hill football man, someone that doesn't have more to give to this league?


I think it's one of the great follies and honestly, the most ridiculous thing in all our time doing this podcast, which is we're going into our 12th season that Bill Belichick wanted a job and did not get one this year. And that will probably be rectified next year. But let it be remembered when the next round of firings and dismissals goes down, that a lot of those teams had a chance to get Bill Belichick and instead chose to outthink themselves.


I could see one silver lining here for Belichick because it's pretty trenchantly noted that when coaches take a year off, their health improves. They are able to watch football more globally. I mean, you're not going to teach Bill Belichick new things. I get that. But just the idea of getting out of the grind, re-energizing, taking a look at of football from a different place. And I think for Belichick to go around to these coaching clinics and to talk to other coaching staffs, it's got to be fuel for him. And I think it takes the hot butt rankings and everyone who's on that list, it dials the notch up because whatever exhaustion or ageism was happening around Bill Belichick a couple of months ago at the end of the New England thing and the documentary that came out, all that, it's like, other owners are now going to be like, wait a minute. Everyone passed on Bill Belichick. But if I'm the giant, so I'm like, we could bring Bill Belichick back to New York to the Giants coach in a bit of poetry if this thing continues to go south. So I think everyone's now about to be watching it like, Wait a minute.


Belichick is already the lead candidate to take a job a year from now.


That's all stuff I agree with from both of you. And yet I don't think it was some Travis that he didn't get hired. He needed a year off. What he was doing was stale. He was doing a poor job. I think it's going to be extremely valuable for him to take a step back and do some self-accounting of how he went 29 and 38 with no playoff wins for four years, three out of four losing records. Because there's no way he is happy with that, and he is as critical as it gets. I randomly reread critical of himself as he gets as he used to be. I reread this book, Patriot Reign, which is one of the great season in the life, embedded reporter books that got slept on. It's Michael Holly, who spent two seasons, all sorts of inside stuff with the Patriots, 2002, 2003. It's amazing. It's like him going to Belichick's cousin's house with Belichick when she has cancer, all this stuff. The number one thing that he stressed that he was important to him was to not have yes men around him, to have people around him that he respected that could push back on what he said because it can't just be one person running the show.


It can't just be one person. Scott Piole, especially in that book, was really important as someone who he trusted to do a lot. He loved how me and Jeanie pushed back. He said, I never want to be the type of leader that gets masturbatory. He used that word in terms of my opinions, and no one's got-He didn't have to use that word. He didn't, but he was. And what did he turn into? He turned into a guy who started making all the decisions, had no one around him, didn't groom anyone that would push back. And he will, I'm sure, reflect and say, I did a poor job for four years. 29 and 38 with three losing seasons is a bad job no matter I think he'll come back a better coach. But to me, it's not some... He needed to reset and change the way he was doing things.


I know, but everyone seems to be so sure of their opinion that he needed to reset and he needed this year away. But he didn't think it. Listen, he could have gotten a job in January and still done some self-reflection and self-scouting and went into this enlivened and re-energized and learning from what happened at the end of the New England run. The idea, I think, ageism played a part in the fact that he's in his early '70s. Now, in some way, the point I'm trying to make will be made in January when multiple teams want the guy. It won't be because, Oh, now he's had the year in head coach jail where he was able to come clean and go to confession and finally see the air of his way. He's going to be the same guy, and he's learned some things away from the game. But I think he would have been learning and scouting himself either way because that's He did such a bad job? Well, I understand what you're saying, and you could point to the end of the run. He also ended up with a quarterback that couldn't really play, and that really shades things.


I think if he ended up with a better quarterback prospect than Mac Jones, we probably aren't having this conversation. That's not to put everything on Mac Jones because he played a major role on Mac Jones. He was the face of the organization behind the scenes as well. I still can't believe it. I don't want to dwell on it anymore. I think we're all on the same page. I'm just a little more stride in my feeling that these teams think they're so smart, and it's a copycat league. I think once other teams put it out there that, Oh, we don't want that guy.


He needs a good team, though. He needs a good team, though. He's a pain in the ass. I'm not assuming he's going to do well. The odds would say he could be mediocre.


And he loves that, Greg. A turnkey team like the Cowboys or the Jets, not like the Jets are going to hire him, but a team that actually has it in place.


His mind is obviously so sharp. He's such a great defensive mind. He can do all that. Running He's not going to need an organization, I think he showed that his best days are behind him when it comes to that.


He'll need to make some adjustments, obviously. He's not somebody to speak on this. He's not going to do a last dance Jordan thing and speak his mind on this stuff. But he loves national guys like a Greg Rosenthal who no one was ever more in his corner, saying he can't do it anymore. He's got to be in a perfect setup. He can't run the show like he used to. I think he's going to be hungry hungry. And I think he would have been hungry this year, too, I guess is my point. This idea that he needed to take the year off. Well, he's getting the year off, and let's see what happens because he will be back.


I think a little bit of all of that can be true. Even if he didn't want the year off, it can help him. He can be doubted, but you have to look at the full body of work. He's one of the greatest coaches, if not the greatest coach of all time. And I find your versatility, Dan, to be impressive that you can come out and attack appropriately the ages and the people that killed Bill for his age on a show where you're asking if I was here to witness the Revolutionary War. So that versatility is not there.


That's a fair point. I think versatility, I'll fall in the sword. That's a good point, Marky. That's fair. I think you're saying it's a little hypocritical. Versitals It seems like the word that's a nice guy move. I'll fall on that sword, baby. All right, let's take a break, and we will talk about, speaking of pressure and decision-makers, who's under the most as we enter draft Welcome back. I'll tell you what, this sport is not for the meek of heart. And leadership in the front office, that Holy Trinity, owner, GM, head coach, all teams are different and who has the juice. But ultimately, there's always someone who's responsible, who will be either celebrated or dragged through the mud for the draft. Then free agency is a test for these decision-makers. But I feel like the real pressure point, the future of the organizations are really built on the back of these three days every April. That's what we're going to talk about right now. That's why you're hearing that ominous synth, Mark Sesler, because I can only imagine. I mean, look at we just talked about Belichick. One day you're the goat, the next day you can't even get a job.


And that's the pressure these guys are under. It's what have you done for me lately? And if you're coming off a so-so draft, for instance, and there are a lot of GMs and front office leaders that are coming off so-so to bad drafts, man, you better hit on this one or you'll be joining Bill Belichick at the next Corn Huskers summit. If you're lucky.


I think you're right. It's a stark, stark environment. That's why it seems to be happening a little bit less, but you got these coaches that like to brag about being in the office 90 hours a week. Gms right now are doing the same thing. They don't see their families for four months. I think this year, especially, there's a lot of new GMs, but the pressure has turned up on some of them, but especially some of these guys that have been around for a while, and there have been some disappointing tracks in the background. So this segment comes at the right time, Dan.


I don't want to get... In this podcast, especially, but I did hear one of the many... A lot of new head coaches, to make your point, Mark. I heard from a birdie that an example is one of the coaches toward the facility after being hired. And the first thing he asked was, Where are the beds? Where are the pull-out couches for my assistants? You could infer quite easily what will be expected of that staff. The fact that the assistant coaching officer didn't have a place to sleep meant that needed to be handled, put it that way. So, yes, there's a lot of pressure all the way down the chain. But let's get into some teams and front office leaders who are under the most pressure entering this draft. Greg, why don't you get us going? Throw a team out there. We'll go around the horn. By the way, for those that are wondering, Coleen Wolf still missing in action We're going to continue to track this, and hopefully she returns, but hope is growing dim.Go ahead, Greg.All right.


I'll save Bartokomus for you because I'm that teammate. I want to mention a name I feel like has not been mentioned since the day he was hired, and he's going to be drafting for the first time, actually. And he's not in a great spot. And yet I still feel like he's under a lot of pressure. His name is Dan Morgan. He's the Panthers GM. Not getting a lot of pop this offseason, the Panthers. Not getting a lot of attention, partly because they don't have a first-round pick. But you know what they do have is the first pick in the second round and then another pick, six picks later. In a draft that it's the perfect spot to have those two picks, where people really feel like the strength of this draft is in the top 50 picks, that the difference between, let's say, 15 and 50 is not that great. And to me, the Panthers have so many needs that he He can put a little bit of a fire sail up for that 33 spot overnight and see what he can get for it and pick up more and more. They're thin everywhere. I love the Deontay Johnson move, but Adam Thelen, you can't expect what you got out of him to happen again.


He is a three in a perfect situation. You need more juice. You don't have a receiver. You don't have a tight end. Your left tackle from a couple of years ago has essentially been a bust, and they're going to say that they love him, but they're going to need another option there. And then I look at their defense, and they've added some good just veteran players that fill the snaps. Josie Juhl, DJ Juan, Ashawn Robinson, like Clownies there, like a bunch of solid guys who can play, and they needed that. But when you look on Our Lads, which I have my favorite depth charts, you can see When they got drafted, where they came from. And I noticed only three players on the Panthers starting defense were drafted by the Panthers. And one of them, Shaq Thompson, who was practically playing with Dan Morgan back when Dan Morgan was quite an exciting middle linebacker back in the day. And so they need homegrown talent, and they need to win fast because we've learned with that owner, you might think you might have a timeline. Dan Morgan has been in the building. He was part of the last regime.


He's not going to have that long of a timeline, and they just need to start finding some players. And I just wanted to say hello to the Carolina Panthers fans that listen to this show.


I'm with you because they've been completely ignored. That is a perilous spot because I think if anyone's going to want to try their test of being a GM, and it It was an uncreative... I think Dan Morgan could be as good as anyone else somewhere, but it was a higher from within, which tells me sometimes about what the owner wants to be able to have control over. I don't know if that's the case here, but the odds on situation tells us that Tepper wants to have the strongest voice. You don't know if the quarterback can play. You inherited a job where you have given away a ton of draft picks for the future and made a ton of terrible team-building decisions over the last three or four years. That's why Matt Rule doesn't have a job. So it's like, I think Dan Morgan selling that pick maybe and acquiring all the assets you can. I agree with you, Greg. I think that makes sense.


Yeah, because this is obviously the critical year for Bryce Young. It comes quick in the NFL. The number one overall pick coming off a nightmare rookie year. If he's bad again, very, very real chance that they just clean house.


Two-fifths, as I mentioned, two high seconds, and then the first pick of the third. That third is almost as good as a late second. Even though they traded all this pick so they have some maneuverability. They got to make it happen.


I thought one more before we throw it to Mark with his pressure point. Just a little... Greg, I like the way you did that. That was an optimistic type way to say hello to the Panthers fans. The one thing that you got to remember to do no matter what, no matter what obstacles you faced, no matter the hardships in your past, there's only one thing you got to do.


He pounded. All right, Mark. It's been a while.


When you look at the last Panthers GM, Scott Fitterer, not surprising why he's not there anymore. I think there's one GM sitting out there that it's like, it is a surprise to me that he's still in the building, and it's George Payton, who I think we have a nickname for. Was it Kevin Saunders, I believe?


That's it.


Okay, so Kevin Saunders has enough on his resume where he shouldn't be there. I think he's got a head coach who essentially probably runs that front office, if not directly, just spiritually. And a head coach in Sean Payton, who's verbally, I know Greg always thinks whatever Sean Payton is saying that he's lying, but he says there are teams up there above us in the draft where they're at number 12, that trading up for a quarterback makes them very valuable front offices and assets. And I think you're looking at a team that has Jarrett Stitt and Ben Deneuci in a post-Russell Wilson Apocalypse, and there is a lot of pressure to get up there and get someone if they don't like who's going to fall to them as the fifth or sixth guy. They do have more draft assets than you would think. But I think either way, if for some reason it doesn't go the way that Sean Payton wants, that Sean Payton has the easiest fall guy around. And once every couple of years, there's a team that cleans house in the front office right after the draft. And I could see that being a real problem for George Payton/ Kevin Saunders.


If it doesn't come out real well for them, I mean, they absolutely need it.


I mean, if that's happening, the decision is already made. It doesn't matter. They're not going to let them do anything on draft weekend if they're going to fire him.


Well, so I'm saying I don't know if the decision is already made or if maybe they work better together than we realized. I just think that the power structure puts them in a tough spot. And it's almost like you have someone you can blame other than Sean Payton if you're Sean Payton, if it doesn't go well a couple of weeks from now.


I mean, you could almost look at it a different way then, Mark. Especially these teams coming off disappointing years, there's not a lot of pressure. I mean, there's pressure to try to be better, but If things go wrong, Sean Payton is pulling the strings anyway, and he could just blame the GM and start over there. And if things go right, Kevin Saunders keeps his job most likely, and McVay and and Payton gets all the credit.


I don't like the power structure for George Payton to begin with. But I would say, secondly-Who? Kevin Saunders. But if you go into another rough year with Sean Payton, I think things get real ugly. I just do. I think they've got to come out of this draft with a lot more hope than their... Their roster, to me on offense, is just like, Come on, guys. And the drafts have not been great. They've not had great draughts under Kevin Saunders. So it's like, what's the track record here?


Is it Walmart? That's the part that owns the Broncos? Yeah. We don't know yet how patient they are. When we talked about the Russell Wilson trade, I shared my opinion that I thought if they're being run the right way, that Payton should be mostly absolved of year one because he had to inherit the Russell mess and everything that came with it. For sure. Now, it's pretty widely known across the league that the Broncos are in a very difficult spot in terms of how they can spend over the next couple of years because of that disastrous Russell Wilson transaction. I guess I just disagree just a little bit about what the expectations are in Denver and when the expectations are lowered because of their unique situation, that maybe it's not as high a pressure point as other teams.


Broncos fans didn't like it going into last season, but I'm going to make the same point now. I was like, Where is the strength of this team? Give me a position group that has much. It's a pretty bad roster. I might put it in the bottom six in the NFL. I think Payton did a fine job. Sean Payton, that's why we talk about Kevin Sun. They did a fine job coaching up what they had, but there's not a lot to wrap your arms around here and feel good about for the Bronco. So I'm with you. They need some talent infusion. And it's tricky. Bo Nicks as a second rounder feels okay. Bo Nicks, if you take them in the top 15, feels a little rich.


Yeah, they definitely We really need to get better. All right, we started with two bad teams, two sad teams. A bad team and a sad... Panthers are sad and bad. Anyway, Panthers, Broncos, two teams that are looking up the hill. I want to talk about a team that's in really the opposite place, but I attached some headlines to these. The headline here is, Take a window for granted, and soon enough, it will be a wall.


I like that.


Pretty good. Made that one Talking about the packers. You have Brian Gutekunst has been there for a while now. He survived the Aaron Rodgers power struggle, handled it beautifully, looking back on it, nailed the Jordan love pick. You have Matt Lafleur there, his sixth season with the team. There's been a lot of success in those 6 seasons, but also they have not gotten to the big one with Lafleur. This is an organization that expects to get back to the Super Bowl. The whole last season, they went nine and eight. They closed very strong, obviously. They went into the playoffs. They were the team nobody wanted to play. They gave the lines all that they could handle. And now it is understood that this is the year that they make that leap. And it better be because I think that these windows, especially the Jordan love situation, Greggy, and maybe you could provide just a little clarity, because of his situation, where is he at contract-wise?


He's entering the second year of a two-year contract. They're probably going to give him a new contract this offseason if I had to guess, in the summer.


Yeah. And then things get a little more difficult for the packers. And so what you have with their situation, they have the 25th overall pick, and they have a early second-round pick. That is the Aaron Rodgers trade. It was going to be a first rounder, but Rodgers didn't reach the percentage of snaps because of his injury, of course. So they get a second rounder. So that is the ninth pick of the second round. They also have the 26th pick of the second round, and they have two third-round picks. So that's pretty nice. They have, for a team coming off a successful season with a really exciting young core, they now have five picks Out of the first 91, including three in the top 60. And I think the pressure here is it's not like Gutekun is going to lose his job, but this is, look at the bills as a recent example, or what the lions are now entering as they come into what feels like a big time important year for their organization. I could have talked about the lions in this exercise. This is the year. And if Gutekun nails this draft and makes smart moves and picks up, hits the first round pick, and then gets value in those ever valuable second and third rounds.


That could really fill out whatever ills this roster at this point, whether they decide they want to go after an offensive tackle, even though they had a pretty good season from Rasheed Walker, who filled in for Bakhtari, but that's a former seventh-round pick. Do you want to upgrade at that position? Do you want to add some help to the defense? You finally made the decision and changed defensive coordinators, but do you want to add more talent there? I suspect that they will, and they'll be aggressive addressing the defense because the offense is in a very good place overall. But this is such a pivotal moment in recent packers history, because if you hit this draft, look out. You could be hoisted in Lombardi in February. If you miss on it, you could be the next Bills, the team that could have, would have, should have, that was on the make and then never got there.


I would just say one thing, though, quick, though, because I see what you're saying, that it could swing either way. But with the way the packers operate in general, I would give Goody an A, if not an almost an A plus on rebuilding the offense because in a way, even though Aaron Rodgers is Aaron Rodgers, it was a little bit of a progress stopper. And we're really only four months removed from finding out that Jordan Love can play. And now I think the hope is gushy rushing out of that organization.


Well, Rodgers did win back-to-back MVPs before that last season.


No, I know, but I guess it's more like, in a way, they found a good quarterback in Love, but then his rookie contract has been eaten up by that situation. It's two different things in a way. But they're pretty conservative with what they do with their front office and stuff. I think Goody has to be as safe, a GM, as anyone in the division in a way. But also because he's been successful. I want to make sure we're on the same page because I'm not talking about...


I don't see this segment as who's on the hot seat necessarily. It's about who is in many cases it will be, and probably the other teams I bring up, it will be. But in Goody Kunz's situation, it's more like, here is a moment, and it might not be on everyone's radar that this could be the year that separates them and makes them a true Super Bowl team if he hits it. It's like a moment in time before love gets that big deal.


I thought you said that he would be in trouble for some reason if this draft didn't go well, which maybe you weren't.


He would live with regret more than he'd be in trouble.


I think that's so true. As you were talking, and I'm thinking about it, they have a chance to really set themselves up as the consistent team in the NFC, a young quarterback in a really good young core, a lot of which is on offense. That's how you win consistently. And when you say, watch out, you turn into the Bills. And part of me thinks like, well, you should be so lucky. I mean, they did win the most amount of games over the last four years. I don't view the Ville's story as remotely close. To me, Josh Allen is in the middle of their prime, and so their window's open. So consistent winning is what they want. You want to get it a little over the top and some good picks on defense, especially, I think, in the secondary. Maybe you get a little younger with the pass rush, but they're a team unlike the Broncos, where I look around, I see a lot of strengths, and I don't see a ton of huge screaming needs. You mentioned a couple of them. I think they'll definitely address the secondary at some point with those first three picks, but he's in a good spot.


Damosheck does that list of the greatest positions in sports, and he puts Bruin Center and Yankees, something. I don't even remember what it was. Centerfield. It's like, How about Packer's GM going from Wolf to Thompson to Gutekunst? That's pretty good.


I feel like most of Dave's cross-sports points just circle back to Mario Lemu.


Yes, it is. It is the goal of all. It is the goal of all. It is the center, I think, is number one all time or something.


All right, let's take a break, and then we will go around again talking about different teams, the decision makers. What am I calling this again?


Pressure points. It was decision makers. Team builders.


Pretty good. All right, we'll be right back.


All right, everybody. Let's never play that again.


Thank you very much, Greg Rosenthal, who said that. By the way, Greg, have you given any thought so far about the Delaware tapes now that they are in the possession of the old Zooser? No.


I mean, despite the firestorm of interest on social media. Oh, wait, no, I haven't heard from one listener on this thing. Nobody cares. We waited too long for this bit. The desire has really diminished over the years. Half the listeners are like, What's Dan even talking about? This is from eight years ago.


What a mistake that was. Everyone, all the soldiers of the ATN army, please hit up Greg on Twitter/X. We need help. Let him know that you do want to hear the Delaware tapes. It would be a win. Come on, Greg. Mark, like we said, a win for everyone, a win for you. I think so.


I think when we're hearing the innocent voices of children, young minds and hearts asking that this be the wish that were fulfilled not only just for us, but for the future generations. So I think it's important.


Yeah, that was a rookie mistake by me. And I know you're not. I will be turning off notifications until Monday, April 15th.


All right. Start sending this on Monday, April 15th. No, and I know you're not in it for the glory, but just think, Greg, that you two could have a signed football from Debo Sweeni. Like me. That's how it works. I potentially played a role in the, I'm going to say, an orphanage that was erected in the Clemson region. I'm not sure, but I did play a role because I got that ball. You two could have some type of artifact celebrating your great philanthropic mind.


I think it was I'm just thanking you for speaking to the Young Capitalists of America conference or something. Let's come down with the orphanage.


Young Capitalists of America? That's so false. Anyway, again, just before we get back to it, who wins? Mark and I. Who wins? The audience. And who wins? The Santa Monica Food Bank as an example, where we will donate on behalf of Greg if he lets us all hear the Delaware His his Prague Acid Rock Group from the mid '90s in high school out of Western Massachusetts. Some of their great work includes, I have it under Delaware bio, under stickies on my laptop, How do you want it cooked? Shiny Man went to Frogtown. These are all output from Delaware. All right, let's get back to it. We must listen to Delaware. Shiny Man went to Frogtown. You're up, Greg.


I'm going to go with Brandon Bean.


Pressure point.


I started with Carolina. Let's go to a former Panthers staffer here, Brandon Bean, who arrived in Buffalo after one season of Sean McDermott. He joined his power there in 2018. I think what they've done since McDermott got there could be taught at a sports business school of how to rebuild a franchise through pics, through trade, through free agency, how take something where there was basically nothing and create a consistent winner. Hopefully for them, they get a Super Bowl eventually, and it really completes that story. But I think he was excellent. But you look at the track record over the last few years, and in the draft, specifically, there's just not enough home runs. There's a bunch of singles. Like, Ed Oliver, you found a guy who you can build around. That was 2019. For the most part, all their best players, their core players, were found back then when they first got there, 17, 18, 19, maybe And since then, they've been hitting singles. He needs to find guys that can be around. Now, they don't pick until late. I've seen some stuff that maybe they trade up for wide receiver. I think that's crazy because they do have some fifths and sixths in this class where they can trade to move around.


But I think they need to find two or three real difference makers in the top 75 picks. We're going to talk receiver tomorrow, but their number one receiver right now at wide is Curtis Samuel or Cleo Shukhtier. I don't even know who it is. Oh, Jesus. It's Kincaid. They need a wide receiver. They've signaled that they're really happy with their offensive line. They recently signed Lael Collins, too. So I think that's one area they won't hit. But especially in the secondary, the defense and at wide receiver, they need core guys. They need the bills that are going to help carry Josh Allen to where he hasn't gone before. I think he can do it because he's done it before, but they're starting to run out of time. I liked the draft last year. It worked out okay, but they need to start stacking them.


The one thing I don't like about Buffalo's situation is when less than a month before the draft, you created a burning need for an offense that... You could say Josh Allen go do it all on his own. Well, no, he can't. That's just not how this is going to work. And so you have to go find that wide receiver. It's absolutely you need to use it. You might need a trade up if you fall in love with someone, but then you need that wide receiver to produce right away. I just don't love the situation. I think I think there is a lot of pressure on the coach. There's a lot of pressure on the quarterback. There's a lot of pressure on the front office. Brandon B. Did such a good job building this thing, but they're in a place that they did not plan to be, I don't think on any level right now.


They could make an aggressive move up the board, potentially, to grab one of these top wide receivers. But it might end up being more likely that with that 28th overall pick or even in the second round where they pick 60th. Yeah, they have to be sharper than ever and identify someone that is a high value guy and hope they hit on it. I agree with what you're saying, Mark. They just seem very vulnerable where they are right now. If you were going to trade Diggs, the timing of it, post free agency, pre-draft, almost just puts more pressure on the organization to hit on something. It's not easy to hit on these guys. As good as this wide receiver class is, and like Like I said, we're going to talk about that in an episode later this week. It's not easy to land on the guy that actually turns into a big-time pro. They need a guy who's going to be a big-time pro. They're trying to win the Super Bowl. It's not good enough anymore just to go 12 and 5 or 13 and 4. Immense pressure in Western New York. That was a... Greg, Marky.


I think the most interesting spot in the first round is number four, the Arizona Cardinals. And I think with some of these guys, like with Brandon B, you can look back and say, what have his draughts been? And with Monty Austin-Fort, their GM, I'm less concerned with... He doesn't have that track record, but he did. He almost reminds me of our old guy, Sashi Brown, where he came in with a very distinct strategy. They used last year to compile draft picks. They didn't trade Kyler Murray, which was this thing that I thought might happen, but they're cool at quarterback, so they're not a candidate to take a quarterback at number four. They talk I'll talk about a team that needs wide receivers. They've got Michael Wilson, who I like, Greg Dorch, who I like. These are supporting guys, and Chris Moore, essentially. So they're another team that, well, what do you do? You created this burning need. You could also, I think, obviously, trade these picks to the Vikings and get a good wide receiver down the board a little bit. I guess I just cannot wait to see what they do. They've got 11 picks in this draft, and it's cool to keep accruing them.


But to go back to Sashi Brown, because the one thing that comes up is I love the strategy because I think it's like you're always going to have a team when you're number four and they have needs all over the place. So recreate this team with young players. But that's Sashi Brown accruement of draft picks. And this is other teams have tried this, too. It's like, you got to hit on them, and they missed on a lot. There was one draft where they drafted four wide receiver and a quasi-titend wide receiver type hybrid, and none of them worked. None of them worked. And that's only the beginning of how it didn't work. So I guess what I want to find out is Monte Austin Fort, great plan, good strategy. You sit at the inflection point of the entire first round where you're going to get great value like you did from the Texans a year ago, and you can't argue with that strategy. But When are you, the front office, the GM, the group of people, to go get the right players? Because if that doesn't happen, you've passed on someone like Marvin Harrison Jr.


It's like you could get a legit, bona fide, likely Hall of Fame, or you can continue your draft capital building plan. I just cannot wait to find out what they're offered, what they say yes to, what they say no to, and what they do.


They have so many needs, and they're just a little unlucky. Do you remember? I memory-hold this game, but Week 17, they were down 21-6 to the Eagles. And Kyler Murray ends up putting up 35 points. It felt like the bottom of the Eagle season, and yet they had more lengths to go. And they won that game. And they would have They only won three games. I think they would have been two picks higher if they hadn't won that game. And they would be in such a better position here to trade that number two pick for a quarterback. They could have gotten the farm for it. And sometimes it is a little lucky. It's like the Panthers got this This one pick for the Panthers. I mean, the bear's got this number one pick for the Panthers being this bad. No one expected them to be this bad. So it's just a little bit of bad luck. And they have so many needs that it's like you could pick any position and they need it other than quarterback. I would say. Maybe It's an offensive line. They're pretty good.


I'll go glass half full in the sense that we don't know if this management, and never forget ownership. When you look at the teams that are successful and teams that aren't, it all connects. Can you trust the Arizona Cardinals to make the right decision? If they were sitting with the number two pick, as you're saying, then they have to, or most likely, make a decision either to draft a quarterback or they trade out of the pick, and maybe the trade they make is great, or maybe it makes them overthink things and mess things up. The way it is now, it's almost dummy proof. It's like you got in a top-flight wide receiver year, you need a top-flight wide receiver for this quarterback that you paid all this money to. Go just take Marvin Harrison or whoever you think is the best wide receiver. Don't overthink it and get better overnight. How do you mess this one up? I don't know. It seems like a tough one for even the Cardinals to look.


But I think they're likely... Greg, where would you put the odds that they trade it? I mean, it depends. I think the Vikings already called them. I would put it at 60% that they would maybe trade it. That may be a little bit high, but Or just add Justin Jefferson or Jamar Chase or a player of that level to your roster right now with your quarterback that you're still trying to figure it out.


I guess that's what I mean. I said there's nothing wrong with trading back when there's a quarterback starting team out there and you have to pick up the phone of it, it rings. But also, I feel like just taking a potential first-team all-pro-level wide receiver is a path to getting a lot better also.


To give Monte Austin for credit, look, Last year, Will Anderson turned out to be great for Houston, but the Cardinals are happy with that trade. They already did a trade down last year, and they had a sneaky good rookie class. They got four or five real contributors, real NFL players. They're off to a good start. I think it's a good coaching staff, and the GM has done a good job so far. Yeah, Mark, I think it's significant the chances they trade. I'd put it a little lower just because Harrison's so special that it's like 40, 60, but it feels like it could happen for sure.


Okay, I got a weird one here in terms of the headline because I wanted to give a headline for each of these. Yes, the jaguars. Let's talk about the jaguars. Little Bartakemus. The Bartake heads are going off right now. Got Doug Peterson. I was thinking of a headline, For Some Reason. The phrase, I do not want what I haven't got, just came into my head. That is the title of Chinado O'Connor's 1989 album that had, of course, nothing compares to you on it. I'm like, Why did I think of that? Why did that just come into my brain? That seems strange. I'm not even a huge Shaneid head. I respect and rest in peace. She's Irish. I loved Shanead O'Connor's voice, but it's not like I was a superfan. I don't own an album. Why did I do not want what I haven't got come into my brain? Anyway, apparently It's a song off the album. It's said to be about finding acceptance for what can't be changed, making peace with loss and limitation, and finding the courage to live and to love. I said, That What about Trevor Lawrence. What? Like, are the Jaguars now, we maybe didn't draft the savior of all saviors, and he could be very good, but there's some limitations here.


He's not going to be the guy that takes you just on his back, but you can move on from that. Once you know that you have a very good to potentially great quarterback, but maybe not a first ballot Hall of Famer, now that We know that, we process that, and maybe there's some grief involved there. But it's not the end of the world. You still have a quarterback that 25 teams in the league, maybe 23 teams in the league, maybe 20 teams in the league would kill to have. So we move forward. And how do they do that now? Here's a quote. Do we have this quote, by the way, ETP, from Doug Peterson? I don't know if I'll ever get over it. I think for me, it's going to be my motivation, my fuel moving forward. I'm not going to let it cloud the vision, but at the same time, it's going to be close in my mind as I move forward with the team this spring. Doug Peterson was talking about the one and five finish to the season when they were eight and three. And on top of the world, they went in Houston right around Thanksgiving to go to eight and three, and then the wheels fell off, and Trevor Lawrence's injury played a big role in that.


But it wasn't the only thing. The defense melted down as well. So now they have to figure out where they're at. And they have, let's see, they have the 17th overall pick, and they have the 48th overall pick in the second round, and then they have a compensatory pick in the third round. So they have three picks in the top 96, two in the top 50. Where do you go if you're Balki? Where do you go if you're Doug Peterson, who took the end of that season very personally? You're definitely set at quarterback, you believe. You got to decide whether you're going to make Trevor Lawrence a top five paid quarterback in the league. That's a decision that it's going to be difficult. But what do you do to try to get better in the AFC South? And B, as also Peterson said in that press availability at the owners meetings, they're back to being the Hunter in the AFC South. I'm looking at like, move the sticks, mocks, Terry and Arnold, the cornerback out of Alabama to Jacksonville. There's a lot of issues with miscommunications in the secondary, a lot blown coverages late in the season.


So that makes sense. They also... The repercussions of a move that a lot of us first guessed at the time, the Trayvon Walker first overall pick when you had Aiden Hutchinson, who seemed like the safer pick. Because Walker hasn't become the guy they expect them to be. They have a big need, an edge rusher still. So I think it's the defense where you focus, but you can't ignore the offense that needs help with Ridley out the door. And Trevor Lawrence at an inflection point in his career, who is he? Well, give him the the right setup and give him the cast that allows him to maximize what he is. Very important. A lot of pressure on the brain trust in Jacksonville.


I maybe part of it is see what type of wide receiver falls to you. 17, you said. Because it's a special draft on that note. I think it's easier when you're a team that has a couple of burning needs. They need a wide receiver. They need secondary help. You maybe can't go... I mean, you can go wrong with any of these pics, but you probably can't walk away from the first round not feeling good about whoever you add. I don't hate their spot there. I'm higher on Trevor Lawrence, maybe, than you are. I know what you're saying, but the injury hurt him a lot last year, but he's still like... The way he ended the season before outside of the playoff game, he's 6'6, he can run, he can do everything.


Where would you have him in your quarterback rankings right now?


Well, so I mean, the QB index is based on literally the last stuff we saw from him.


Overall, the offseason, you do-Yeah, wipe that just in general.


I would say this. I think he has absolute potential to be a top 10 quarterback.


But where would you put him right now? That's all I'm saying.




Yeah, and I would, too. I would put him in that territory. I'm saying, is it time to give up the ghost that you have the top three guy?Not.




All I'd say. And build around it.


Just not yet. I mean, that would be like a-But by the way, you could win Super Bowl with a top 10 quarterback, obviously, and many have.


It's not the end of the world. I'm just saying him as the all-world savior, Peyton Manning type guy, maybe that's the calibration or the recalibration that needs to be made.


I need to write the list down, and I feel like I'm lower on Lawrence and consensus, but maybe not in this room. I think he's still in the top 10. He's probably right around 9 or 10. And that's his play so far, and I think he can get better. I think he had a lot of good play last year that they were not supporting him early in the season. But they are a weird team. I agree, Mark, that the needs aren't that screaming. They're a better version to me of the Broncos, where it's like they're average to good at most spots. Secondary to me, especially cornerback, is the biggest need. But they feel like they solve something by signing Eric Armstead. But that's an older player with an injury last year. And so you need defensive linemen, even if it's a third edge with Walker and Allen, or if it's a defensive tackle. And they would have loved to keep Bradley so that receiver wasn't in need, but now you go into it with a need. I think Lawrence is emblematic of this whole team. It's in the middle. They spent a lot on the offensive line, and it's not a bad line, but they spent a lot of resources for it to just be Our guy, Balki.


Our guy, he survived a lot of different power struggles. Do you know who the coach was when Trent Balki entered the building there?


Don't be ridiculous.


It was Doug Marrone. It was Marrone. He was there with Marrone. Urban Meyer kept him around as like, Okay, you can be my guy who takes care of that side of things. Darryl Bevel, remember, he was an interim head coach there for a while, and now he's still here with Peterson. He had all those power struggles in San Francisco. He supposedly wants a team that's bigger and tougher and stronger and faster than everyone. I don't quite see that. They're very middle of the pack.


I agree. It's time to figure some things There's a lot of stuff going on right there. All right. Good stuff. Let's take a break, and we'll wrap things up. All right, we're back. By the way, we're still... Coleen has been missing for about 45 to 50 minutes now, and It's I think where we're at now, Mark, it's gone from a search and rescue to, I hate to say this, a search and recovery.


Well, yeah. I think part of the difficulty is that we're still locked in our chairs trying to produce the show while realizing that we've lost our friend. And so we're going to have to shift into full investigation mode after the show. But if you can find the Delaware tapes, I believe we can find a five-foot-one blonde.


There have been reports out there from various police scanners on the east side of Los Angeles that there's been witnesses to a young blonde woman talking about Quesia Doffo-Mensa's third year in during his rebuild, that it's go time. I do feel like that might be a little bit of a clue for where to find her. Just talking just on the street corner. It's a little worrisome.


Colleen has become the gone girl of this podcast over the last couple of weeks. We just got to find her and hope she's okay. All right, that is it for the Wednesday show, and we'll be back a little later in the week. As we said, we're going to continue our draft worm hole and really dig in on one of the most exciting positions, or maybe the, it depends, quarterback, wide receiver, position groups in this draft, which is wide receiver. So that's coming up later this week. Anything else to add, boys, before we say goodbye.


Never. It's been a pleasure.


As always. And Mark, again, not constructive criticism, but just a suggestion about your background on remote.


You have put it on my radar fully, and I am going to think about how to address it.


Let me underline this with, My wife got back to me. The dog rescue place is Love, Leo, Rescue. If you are in the Southern California area, it is an incredibly run organization that really put the pet first. Adopt a dog, save a life. Love Leo rescue is a nonprofit based in Los Angeles. We believe all dogs deserve a second chance. So check out loveleorescue. Org. That's where I got my beloved captain, and they do amazing work. So Check that out. And until next time, he's the call. Where are you, Connie? Hey, guys.


Thanks for listening to this episode of the Around the NFL podcast. I can't wait to do I'd like to thank producer Eric Roberts for going into the office on an off day, just so I'd have everything I need to do the show remotely. Eric, we tried our best. To Greg, thanks for sending out the news item so early. It's a true hero move. You know me so well. To Mark, my brother in anxiety. Thanks for probably overpreparing today. You're always ready for anything and everything. I just wish I could say that about my Internet provider, especially today. And to Dan, who never stops believing that my remote appearances could maybe work this time. You miss all the shots you don't take, and we've taken a whole lot of shots. So good times, gang. We'll reconvene in studio.