Letters From The General/Rick Riggin

Letters From The General/Rick Riggin

Dearest Beth,
Our march to Tennessee was a triumphant one as we tasted victory against the invading gold miners in our last battle. Only if we would’ve known what these men they call Titans had planned for us. Our young officer, Capt. Brissett, lead our battalion with great leadership. But neither he nor I could have known that these men, these Titans, were nothing short of immortal. Like me, their General also has nagging battle wounds, but he led his Titans to victory. Their swords and shields are as much a part of them as their own beating hearts. I look forward to one day soon, rejoining my men in the trenches, and reclaiming our days of victory…
Love Always

General A. Luck

Source Rick Riggin Flipping The Field

So yeah about “Rodgers and the NFC” /Ed Kracz Balance NFL Contributor

So yeah about “Rodgers and the NFC” /Ed Kracz Balance NFL Contributor
By Ed Kracz
NFL Contributor

Too many of the stars in the NFL heavens have begun to flicker out.
Another weekend of games are complete, and on this one, Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers couldn’t make it to the finish line, breaking a collarbone in his throwing shoulder on a clean hit from Minnesota linebacker Anthony Barr during their game on Sunday. So Rodgers joins other stars such as the Giants’ Odell Beckham, the Texans’ J.J. Watt, the Cardinals’ David Johnson, the Vikings’ Dalvin Cook, and the Patriots’ Julian Edelman on the shelf for the remainder of the year.
It’s not good for the league or its fans when these types of high-quality players go down before the season has even begun to get within ear shot of trick-or-treaters ringing doorbells on Halloween.
Strictly from an on-the-field perspective, the injury to Rodgers may have the greatest consequences not only on his team, but across the entire NFC landscape, from the east coast where Philly is making plenty of noise to the west coast where Seattle’s defense keeps thumping right along.
Rodgers was arguably the best player in the league. He gave the Pack a chance to win any game they played, even though Green Bay is a flawed team. So is just about every team in the league, though, which made Rodgers the great tiebreaker and his team a perennial Super Bowl contender.
Now, Green Bay will attempt to stay afloat with a former fifth-round draft pick in Brett Hundley and a backup who played his college football at the tiny Division III Wesley University in Dover, Del.
Meanwhile, the rest of the NFC salivates.
Suddenly, the Eagles are the favorite to earn a No. 1 seed. They have the best record in the NFC at 5-1. Seattle is in the hunt for the top spot with a defense that is still ferocious and a quarterback in Russell Wilson who has been to the mountaintop once already in his career. Don’t count out Carolina, yet, either despite a 28-23 loss to Philadelphia last Thursday.
None of these teams have anything locked up, by any means, though.
Not now, not after the momentum Rodgers’ injury gives teams like the Falcons, who were a 13-point favorite at home on Sunday, yet somehow found a way to the Jay Cutler-led Miami Dolphins. Or the Detroit Lions, who looked like a team to be reckoned with until losing their last two games, giving up a whopping 52 points to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
The Washington Redskins fought tooth-and-nail to get to 3-2 by surviving an upset bid from the winless 49ers on Sunday.
Go right down the list … Minnesota, especially quarterback Teddy Bridgewater given the green-light to practice this week, the Los Angeles Rams with a 31-year-old coach in Sean McVay doing wonders with former No. 1 draft pick Jared Goff, and on it goes.
Really, there are only two teams who don’t look like they can make it into the playoff field of six and they are the 1-5 Giants and 0-6 49ers. Maybe the Packers are the third now that Rodgers is done.
The rest?
Well, with Rodgers’ star now extinguished most of the NFC teams have an even greater chance to shine.

Follow Ed Kracz on Twitter: @kracze

‘NFL Films Presents Touchdown in Israel’ Follows Robert Kraft and Pro Football Hall of Famers’ Trip to the Holy Land

​​’NFL Films Presents: Touchdown in Israel’ Airs Friday, October 20 at 8:00 PM ET on NFL Network​

“Bringing the game to the rest of the world…There’s nothing better.” – Joe Montana

NFL Films Presents: Touchdown in Israel airs on Friday, October 20 at 8:00 PM ET on NFL Network. The one-hour show produced by NFL Films and hosted by Katie Nolan follows the unforgettable spiritual journey of New England Patriots Chairman & CEO Robert Kraft and 18 Pro Football Hall of Famers to Israel to relish in the faith-filled culture and spread the gospel of America’s Game.

Touchdown in Israel follows Kraft and the team of 18 Hall of Famers including Jim Brown, Joe Montana, Roger Staubach, Cris Carter, Aeneas Williams and Joe Greene as they visit historical and biblical landmarks including the Mount of Beatitudes, Jordan River, Masada, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Western Wall, City of David and the Dead Sea. Together, the football legends absorb the Holy Land’s offerings and form powerful bonds with one another.

Included in Touchdown in Israel are reflections from Hall of Fame cornerback and founding pastor of Spirit Church in St. Louis Aeneas Williams discussing how God helped Williams through his football career, and Hall of Fame wide receiver Cris Carter sharing his story on Christ saving his football career and helping him overcome drug abuse, as well as baptisms in the sacred Jordan River for many of the Hall of Famers.

Kraft pioneers the integration of Israeli culture and American football, opening the Kraft Family Sports Campus to develop another cultural link between the United States and Israel. Alongside Kraft, NFL football greats help foster football’s growth in Israel by coaching and mentoring local Israeli football squads in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Touchdown in Israel features the following Pro Football Hall of Famers:

Joe Montana

Roger Staubach

Joe Greene

Cris Carter

Andre Reed

John Stallworth

Eric Dickerson

Marshall Faulk

Dave Casper

Jerome Bettis

Jim Brown

Ron Yary

Aeneas Williams

Lem Barney

Willie Lanier

Mike Singletary

Andre Tippett

Bruce Smith

Provided below are some select quotes from NFL Films Presents: Touchdown in Israel:

– “You see us with the equipment on. You see us with the helmets on. But at the end of the day, we’re just human beings that are in need of Christ…Learning to worship God helped me learn to overcome fear. So many people never reach their destinies, never reach their potential because they never learn that they are created in God’s image. As they learn to worship the One that created them, the fear begins to dissipate because God becomes bigger then whatever that fear is.” – Aeneas Williams

– “I continue to thank God for allowing my family and me, Jonathan, Daniel and Joshua to help continue to build Jerusalem the Holy City all together, as one nation, one city, and with a prayer for peace, the nation of Israel lives.” – Robert Kraft

– “I came here as just a member of the Hall, but man I am leaving with some special relationships.” – Marshall Faulk

– “Bringing the game to the rest of the world…There’s nothing better. What you’re doing with bringing American football here, it is something that brings people together.” – Joe Montana

COLLEGE FOOTBALL FTF CFB TOP 5/Rick Riggin

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

FTF CFB TOP 5
Rick Riggin Official College Analyst for The Balance

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When we have weeks where no ranked teams play each other, crazy things happen… Or maybe it was just because it was the Friday the 13th weekend??

This weekend we saw 4 of the Top 10 teams go down starting with Clemson and Washington State Friday night, followed by Auburn and Washington on Saturday. The fun didnt stop there though. It took OT for Michigan to finish off Indiana, and Texas had a late lead against Oklahoma, before Baker Mayfield put the Sooners on his shoulders to get the W in the final minutes.

So here is the ever evolving Flipping The Field Top 5 Rankings.

1. Alabama – No surprise. “To be the man, you have to beat the man, WOO!” – Ric Flair… And Arkansas really had no shot at doing that. Only A&M has been close so far.

2. Georgia – Just could be the man to beat the man but we won’t find out until the SEC Championship Game.

3. TCU – The Big 12’s only hope the way I see it right now. I know Oklahoma beat Ohio St at Ohio St, but man, the loss to Iowa St just looks really bad. As long as the Big 12 doesn’t cannibalize itself, TCU will be in the Playoff.

4. Penn State – I left them out last week, but not out of disrespect… I was just wrong. If they can avoid a disappointing loss, or a late loss, or just avoid losing is what I mean, the Big 10 Champ definitely gets in.

5. Ohio St – Yup, they’re on track to bust up the Playoff again with their proven formula of losing early. How bad does the loss to Oklahoma look now? They just need to keep doing what they’re doing like famously said by Charlie Murphy. That OSU-PSU game is growing large.

Oh by the way. There’s about a half a dozen 1 loss teams right now that can crash the party. Like I said, this ranking evolves weekly… Be sure to Subscribe, follow @Flipping_Field and @Riggin_Rick on Twitter.

Source FTF/Rick Riggin
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This Week in the NFL! Ed Kracz/NFL Contributor

nfl-week-6-opening-lines

By Ed Kracz ED

Official NFL Contributor to The Balance

The Dallas Cowboys have the weekend off thanks to their bye, but the drama that has surrounded star running back Ezekiel Elliott did not take a break.
Elliott’s on-again, off-again six-game suspension was reinstated earlier in the week. Elliott, the Cowboys and the NFL Players Association refuse to go quietly into the night, however.
The NFLPA has asked the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for an immediate recall so they can pursue a full-panel hearing with the court. If the recall goes through, Elliott may very well be able to play in Dallas’ next game on Oct. 22 against the winless 49ers. If it does not, he will sit out games against San Francisco, the Kansas City Chiefs, Atlanta Falcons, Philadelphia Eagles and Los Angles Chargers. He would not be eligible to return until Nov. 30 against Washington.
By then, the Cowboys’ defense of the NFC East title they won last year, when they went 13-3, may be out the window, because the Eagles appear to be in good shape to unseat them.
The Eagles are sitting at 5-1, compared to Dallas’ 2-3, and Philly quarterback Carson Wentz has taken a huge leap forward from his rookie season. Wentz has thrown seven touchdowns in his last two games and has been over 300-yards passing in half the team’s games this year.
More importantly, the Eagles are playing team football and free of the drama that surrounds the Cowboys and also another NFC East team, the New York Giants, who are sitting at 0-5, have injuries galore at receiver and had to suspend cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie earlier in the week when he complained about being taken out of a recent game.
Elliott and the Cowboys seem to be affected by the suspension issue.
The offensive line, which is one of the league’s best, isn’t playing at the same level as it did last year when Elliott led the NFL in rushing with 1,631 yards.
Also, in his first five games last year, Elliott had 546 yards and five touchdowns. In his first five this season, he has 393 with one touchdown and was held to eight yards on the ground by the Denver Broncos in Week Two.
Should Elliott be lost for the next six games, the running game would be handled by Alfred Morris and Darren McFadden. Not bad, but not Elliott, either.
That means quarterback Dak Prescott, who was last year’s Offensive Rookie of the Year, will likely have to shoulder a heavier load.
Prescott has the targets to be effective in future Hall of Fame tight end Jason Witten and receivers Dez Bryant, Terrance Williams, and Cole Beasley, but the quarterback also has an 11-game streak where he has failed to throw for more than 300 yards.
That would have to end if Elliott’s suspension remains in place.

Letters From The General

Letters From The General
Rick Riggin

General

Dearest Beth,
On a day where we honored our battalion’s retired Commander, Gen. Manning, our Vice President seemed to concede an early defeat by leaving the battle arena as he faced the crouching enemy. Today was bittersweet as I, once again, was not able to join my men in the trenches. But we were able to come away victorious against the invading gold miners of San Francisco. Now we depart these blood soaked fields to battle Titans from Tennessee. The journey will be short, but the fight will be long.

Sincerely,
General A. Luck

What’s The Deal With USA Soccer?

What’s The Deal With USA Soccer?
Rick Riggin

usmnt

The title is the question for this article… Well, this isn’t going to be much of an article, it’s really more of a question for you to comment on. So what’s the deal with USA soccer, more specifically, the USMNT? My thought is (money). I feel that our talented players go to Europe where they pay huge money for soccer, and they develope players on a different level than we do. My second thought is mindset and culture. What I mean is, we know that we’re not going to win the World Cup, but we’re perfectly content on just making it to the World Cup. (Example) – Indiana football knows it can’t win the National Title, but they’re perfectly happy with just 8 wins and a bowl game. I’m not saying the USMNT is the IU Football of the world, but I feel like as a soccer fan, that’s where the mindset is. So what needs to change as far as mindset/culture, and money/development? Our current coaching and mix of old guys and young guys clearly isn’t working. Feel free to leave a comment here, or tweet @Riggin_Rick or @Flipping_Field.

Source Flipping The Field Flipping The Field

FTF Top 5 …Rick Riggin

Thanks to Rick Riggin our official College Football Analyst

Flipping

Before we begin, here is the actual AP Top 5…

Alabama
Clemson
Penn St
Georgia
Washington

Now let’s look at the FTF Top 5. Definitely debatable, but that’s what makes college football fun. (Disclaimer) All questions and complaints go to @Riggin_Rick on Twitter…

1. Alabama – Yes, obvious easy choice. Bama is the clear cut number 1. Even after a close win against A&M at Kyle Field, Nick Saban is right. “We’re not going to beat everybody 66-3.” Yeah the SEC might not be what it was 5 years ago, but then again, I think the conference is trending back up to the top. Which brings me to my #2.

2. Georgia – Talk about a complete turn around. Well, they were never really bad under Mark Richt, but they never played defense like this under him either. Kirby Smart has this team looking like a thorn in Bama’s side for years to come.

3. Washington – Washington at #3??? What the hell kind of hack job ranking system is this? The truth is, it seems like when you see a Washington score they’re winning by 40 (give or take). That just smells like dominance. Crazy good offense, good defense, and a really damn good Head Coach. But wait…. They still got a date with USC down the road.

4. Clemson – Kelly Bryant has big shoes to fill being the guy that follows Deshaun Watson. But he’s done a hell of a job so far and I might argue he’s actually a better runner. I said runner, not QB… Defense is strong, actually all around they’re good. The question is, would they beat the top 3 teams in this ranking on a neutral field? (Debate), and go!

5. TCU – What the hell, not Penn State?!? Have you seen TCU’s defense? They shut down what most of thought was the one of the best offenses in CFB. (Oklahoma St). Kenny Hill, Kenny Trill, whatever you want to call him, is playing on Baker Mayfield level. I put them at 5 because I’m showing some love. Plus their mascot is pretty damn cool.

So why did I not include Penn State? I love what James Franklin has done at PSU. My problem is I feel they rely on Saquon Barkley too much. Ask yourself this, then fight me on Twitter later. (Would they still be undefeated without Barkley?) Yeah they play tough D, but the offense goes when Barkley goes. No disrespect, college football is better when Penn State is relevant. But it looks like Ohio State finally got it’s sh*t together, and these two are on a collision course….

Source
Flipping The Field