Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Captain Mike Rotunda

Captain Mike Rotunda is one of my favorite discoveries on the WWE Network. I was just cruising through some early 90s WCW, and all of a sudden, Captain Mike Rotunda was no longer the Captain of the Syracuse wrestling team. He just up and became a boat captain. And it was clear that WCW told him to buy his own boat clothes, because it basically reminded me of Dr. Steve Brule and his fascination with broats.

The image at the top is the only real-life photo I can find, and he is unfortunately not wearing his captain's hat in the image. Still, I was also able to find this t-shirt which I want more than just about anything.
That is glorious.

Anyway, a year or so later, he went to the WWE and became IRS, which will always be his best known gimmick. But Captain Mike Rotunda is undoubtedly his best gimmick.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Deep Ball Accuracy Is Overrated

When watching tape of the top quarterback prospects in this upcoming draft, I start to notice things. One of these things is that deep ball accuracy is overrated. It is something that gets stressed with the pundits, but it doesn't tell you much about a quarterback prospect.

It's basically the equivalent of kicking 50+ yard field goals. Do we really know who's best? It is such a small sample size that judging accuracy is very difficult, but as long as the kicker has the leg strength to get it there, you should be fine. Quarterbacking is the same way. It doesn't matter what a quarterback's completion percentage is on the 30 deep balls he throws during the year, just that he has shown that he can be accurate and that he has the arm strength to get it there. Although a completed deep ball is a huge play, having the ability to complete that deep ball is more important to the game as a whole as it keeps safeties back which gives more room underneath on routes that are easier to complete.


Sometimes, quarterbacks are going to miss deep balls, other times, they will throw it perfectly, but trying to make a sweeping judgment on a tough throw with a small sample size isn't going to tell you much about how that quarterback will perform in the future.


Sidenote: When searching for a banner image, I typed in deep throw, Google images definitely thought I meant deep throat, so that was...something.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Bushwhackers Were Stupid Awesome

The Bushwhackers will be inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame this week, and that actually caused some controversy. Not that the WWE Hall of Fame makes any sense but teams like Demolition or The Hart Foundation may have deserved to be inducted first. Those people said The Bushwhackers were stupid, and they were right. The Bushwhackers were stupid...stupid awesome.

The Bushwhackers may have never won the Tag Titles, but they never needed them. They weren't there to fight and prove they were the best, they were just accidentally good at getting in fights with other wrestlers. It didn't matter if they won or lost, because you were never sure if they even knew the rules.

Their finishing move was a battering ram where they used the head of their teammate as a battering ram to the gut of their opponents. The battering ram is literally the worst finisher in the history of pro wrestling, but it's still awesome. But The Bushwhackers weren't designed to make sense, so that their heads were so hard that they could absorb any punishment and knock the wind out of their opponent makes enough sense to an 8-year-old to be cool.

And that is why we are here. I loved The Bushwhackers. I would be disgusted by them as an adult, but as a kid, there was no tag team I loved more. Butch once licked my head. Is it the greatest moment of my life? I mean, yeah, getting married was cool, but any asshole can get married. Very few can get licked by a Bushwhacker.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

WrestleMania 31 Betting Odds Analysis

Today, we have our top special guest writer, Lukewarm Jonah, taking the reins for the analysis of the WrestleMania 31 betting odds. I'll add insight, but he's the main event, and my goal is just to be an entertaining sideshow (my comments will be in italics), like a WeeLC match.

It’s a tradition unlike any other, a yearly event that overshadows the Oscars, Super Bowl, World Series, and Final Four combined.  Not Wrestlemania, but Hott Joe and Lukewarm Jonah’s Wrestlemania betting odds analysis.  Let’s get to it.

Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal  
Mizdow is the favorite in this and I’d love to see him win.  A couple of years ago he was super over and had a Money in the Bank contract.  Then he must have pissed someone important off because he fell off the face of the Earth, fast.  Now last year a real wild card in Cesaro won it, he wasn’t even announced to be in it.  Since I can’t see the future and don’t know what random people will be in it, I’m leaning towards a couple of guys with heavy odds against them because I think they’ll use the battle royal to try and actually make someone a star and push them.  Curtis Axel and his Axelmania is at 14/1 and Fandango who has been winning quite a few matches of late is at 25/1.  I’ll go Axel, and watch Alexmania run wild all over Santa Clara.

I'm actually going with Sheamus in this one. The WWE LOVES them Sheamus. He's had a video package going for what feels like the last six months, so he'll win by Brogue Kicking Zack Ryder out of the ring.

AJ Lee and Paige vs. The Bella Twins
AJ Lee and Paige are the big favorites here and I think they’ll win as well.  The question I have to ask myself is do the odds make it appealing to think the Bellas may win because no one who books the WWE really cares about the Divas so anything can happen.  I’m going to stick with the favorites and put my money on AJ and Paige, and go out on a huge limb and say that there’s a miscommunication between the Bellas which leads the WWE to remember that not too long ago Nikki was wishing that Brie had “Died in the womb.”  Actually I really hope that doesn’t happen because those were some of the worst segments I have ever seen.

What I would like to see in this match is Brock Lesnar come out and F-5 everyone, but I could say that for just about every match in the history of wrestling. Instead, I predict that the WWE gives the WrestleMania crowd what they want and give AJ and Paige the victory. But for funsies, we'll still say some Total Divas interfere after the match, and Joey Styles gets a mic to yell "CAT FIGHT."

Intercontinental Title Ladder Match
First of all, this is clearly the match that will steal the show at Wrestlemania.  A seven way ladder match featuring the best wrestlers in the WWE?  Fantastic.  They just replaced the Money in the Bank contract with the IC title and told a bunch of great workers to go at it.  Dean Ambrose is the heavy favorite here, but honestly, I don’t see him that way.  I don’t think Bryan will win because he’ll be in the main event picture still.  Barrett at 9/2 to retain is an attractive option, as is Ziggler at 11/1 and Harper at 19/1.  Even Truth at 35/1 is great odds.  This is a tough call.  I’m going with Ziggler at 11/1.  He should be in the main event picture, but he won’t be.

Since the main event will likely not be a crowd pleaser, they make up for it by giving Ziggler the win. People love Dolph Ziggler; I love Dolph Ziggler, and Kent State could really use it after what happened to Ian Miller at the NCAA Wrestling Tournament.

Randy Orton vs. Seth Rollins
Orton is the slight favorite here, but pretty close to a pick em match.  I’m going with Orton getting the win.  Rollins has beat Orton at every opportunity before and made him look like a punk.  This is the time for Orton to get his revenge and win the big match.  I also think this outcome is likely for a prop bet that I’ll be talking about later.

I agree. Orton gets his revenge. Also, this match doesn't excite me on paper, but it probably has a very good chance of being the second best match after the Divas Ladder Match.

John Cena vs. Rusev
Cena is the heavy favorite here with Rusev being a 4/1 dog.  But can you really see Cena with the US Title?  Really?  Really?  I mean I suppose Cena could win via DQ or countout but they usually don’t pull that crap at Wrestlemania.  I’m backing the underdog Rusev.  Cena puts him over again and actually builds up a big monster heel.

Cena wins and The Authority immediately makes the US Title the number one title in the WWE. A nine-minute montage is shown of past US Champions. Eight of those minutes is Johnny B. Badd shooting off his confetti gun. Nobody brings up the fact that Johnny never won the US Title.

The Undertaker vs. Bray Wyatt
Undertaker a big favorite here, but not like he was when the streak was going on.  Wyatt is an 11/4 underdog. Again I’m going with the underdog Wyatt.  Maybe the reason that the Undertaker lost last year was so he could put over a couple of guys before he retires without having to have them be the guys who ended the streak.  It’s hard to see Taker losing back to back Wrestlemania matches, but I’m still thinking Wyatt pulls off the win here and goes on to the main event scene for quite some time.

Undertaker wins with help from some of his past opponents, who he will bring back from the dead. Guys like Giant Gonzalez, Big Bossman, and CM Punk. 

Sting vs. Triple H
They didn’t bring Sting in just to lose did they?  They’re not really that stupid are they?  H’s ego isn’t that out of control is it?  These questions haunt me a bit, especially since Sting has had the upper hand throughout this entire feud making a Triple H win slightly more possible, but they aren’t that dumb are they?  Well they are, but I’m still betting on the heavy favorite Sting. Sting is 1/7 so not a lot of money to be made here, but he’s got to be the choice to win.

Sting, because WCW was legitimately better during the early Nitro days, and it was so bad that it was amazing during the latter stages.

Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar
The big one, the World Heavyweight Championship match.  Not the odds I was hoping for as I see Lesnar as a huge underdog here.  It makes sense for Reigns to beat him after winning the Rumble and that they clearly see him as the future of the WWE.  I can see Heyman turning on Lesnar and backing Reigns to turn him heel since the crowd hates him already, but I think there’s also a chance that Lesnar resigned and could keep the belt.  At only a 9/4 underdog with Reigns at a 2/7 favorite I’m taking Reigns.  If the odds were a little more favorable I might switch over to Lesnar but as they sit I’ve got to go with the favorite.

Roman Reigns wins. He can, he will. Also, just a sidenote about all of the hate towards Roman Reigns. I don't know how people are saying he doesn't have enough experience for this push when everyone freaked out that he didn't win the Royal Rumble in 2014. It came down to him and Batista, and everybody was pumped at the thought of Reigns winning. Yes, people would have wanted Daniel Bryan more, but had the WWE surprised the world and let Reigns win last year, none of this experience crap would have been brought up. Reigns is still raw, but sometimes being larger than life is more important than wrestling talent. I'm not a huge Reigns fan or hater, but you're crazy if you don't understand why the WWE is pushing this guy...

Prop Bet: Money in the Bank
The prop bet I teased earlier, will the Money in the Bank contract be cashed in?  I say yes at a 5/4 underdog.  Here’s the scenario.  Rollins loses a hard fought match against Orton so it seems less likely that he’ll cash in.  Reigns somehow overcomes the Beast and takes the title from him.  He’s exhausted, hurt, but he triumphed.  Rollins comes from out of nowhere and cashes in.  This is the way to create two new superstars.  Reigns is a star because he did the impossible and beat Lesnar.  Rollins is a star because he’s the champ.  I think it makes the most sense.

...but that being said, I hope Rollins curb stomps him and gives the fans what they want. I'll be there in person, and it would be awesome. 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Why No Iowa Wrestler Won a National Title in 2015

The 2015 NCAA Championships were this past weekend. You may have missed most of it if you are a normal sports fan. I am not a normal sports fan, so instead, I watched approximately 300 wrestling matches from Thursday-Saturday, and it was amazing. Bravo to ESPN who had coverage of all eight mats, so I was able to see every match that I was interested in from start to finish. Unfortunately, the payoff wasn't quite there as Iowa did not win the National Title and no Iowa wrestler claimed an individual crown either. I want to take a look at each wrestler and figure out what went wrong, as only two guys on the team outperformed their seed.

125 - Thomas Gilman - 6 Seed - 4th Place
Gilman was one of two Hawkeyes to outperform his seed, and I have very little to complain about with his performance. He had some close matches, but he took care of business. In the first round, he got a major decision. Then he got a takedown in sudden victory to beat Jordan Conaway. On Friday morning, he got a late takedown and rideout to tie the match and erase riding time against Joey Dance. After that, he won again in sudden victory, and I was totally convinced he was going to the Finals. I mean, all he had to do was beat an unranked freshman from West Virginia. Well, that unranked freshman came out firing and I'm not sure if Gilman realized the match had even started before he was wrapped up in a cradle and pinned in the first minute of the match. After that, he bounced back to get a pin to make it into the third place match. He got two early takedowns against Alan Waters from Missouri, but Waters got a takedown and back points in the final period to win the match. 125 was a super tough weight class this year, and outside of the Moisey match, Gilman wrestled everybody tough. It's not what he wanted, but there's no way to say he didn't wrestle incredibly well to take fourth.

133 - Cory Clark - 3 Seed - 2nd Place
Cory Clark was the other guy who outperformed his seed, and he was definitely the top wrestler in this tournament for Iowa. He just went out and took care of business. His first match was probably his worst effort as he had a little bit of a lead and kind of stalled out and held on for the victory, even though he was never in any real danger. After that, he put together a Major Decision and a decisive victory over Hall from Iowa State. He scrapped with Gulibon but showed he was the better wrestler. That took him to his Saturday night final with Cody Brewer. Brewer was definitely peaking at the right time as he got bonus points against every guy he wrestled in the tournament. He was big, strong, and did a great job of getting to his shots. Still, Cory Clark didn't try to protect himself and get passive. Clark kept on attacking, and he wore out Cody Brewer. Brewer easily held on to win by stalling his ass off in the third period, but Clark went hard for seven minutes, and you really can't ask more than that. In January, I picked him as Iowa's best chance at a National Title, and even though he didn't pull it off, he gave it one hell of an effort.

141 - Josh Dziewa - 5 Seed - 2-2 DNP
Josh Dziewa may be the Hawkeye that I feel the worst for in this tournament, because he actually wrestled really tough in all of his matches but got nothing to show for it. He drew Kevin Jack from NC State in the first round and wrestled tough, but Jack was wrestling out of his mind in this tournament. The guy made it to the semifinals before running into Logan Stieber, so it was just a bad draw for Dziewa in the first round. Then, Dziewa gets a Major Decision in his first consolation match only to run into the guy ranked 6th at the weight in Chris Dardanes. I was very concerned about that matchup, but Dziewa nearly got a tech fall as he won by 14 points. It was amazing. Unfortunately, he ran into Mayes from Missouri, and Mayes was just too athletic for him, and he was eliminated before the Round of 12. There are probably six guys at 141 who could beat Dziewa with how he was wrestling. He ran into three of them out of four matches. Still, that guy turned it on at the end of the season and wrestled as well as I had ever seen him. The end result does not match the performance.

149 - Brandon Sorensen - 4 seed - 4th Place
Sorensen is another guy who wrestled really well in this tournament. He took care of business in his first match with a major decision. He has wrestled close matches all year long and found ways to come out on top in nearly all of them, but in his second match, he gave up a cheap takedown at the end of the first period, and his opponent was able to stall his way to a victory. He took out the guy who took out two former National Finalists in his first consolation match. After that, he wrestled hard and won in sudden victory before getting another major decision with some hard wrestling for seven minutes. He then won again to make it into the third place match before losing to Tsirtsis in OT. They had some tough scrambles, but Tsirtsis is a guy who easily could have won back-to-back National Titles had some things gone differently in his Semis match. Sorensen was the 4 seed; he took 4th place, and overall, he looked pretty good doing it. I'm excited to see how he progresses.

157 - Mike Kelly - Unseeded - 0-2 DNP
Mike Kelly was not the most talented guy, but he always worked hard in his matches. I think a lot of Hawkeye fans are ready to say goodbye to Mike Kelly, but I am going to miss him. He came so close to having impressive wins, but it just never happened for him. He got outwrestled by Demas, which wasn't surprising. Then, he came close to hitting some big moves, but in classic Mike Kelly fashion, nothing quite worked out. That second match was winnable, but he unfortunately couldn't get the victory.

165 - Nick Moore - Unseeded - 0-2 DNP
There are a lot of rumors that Nick Moore wrestled this year injured, and I definitely believe it. He was one of the top guys going into the NCAA Tournament last year, had a terrible performance and hasn't looked the same since. There was just no explosion from him. He wrestled hard, but he simply didn't have it. He just couldn't get any offense going. It's a tough way to go out.

174 - Mike Evans - 3 seed - 6th Place
This is the most disappointing one. Sixth place for a 3 seed isn't bad, but I think everybody's left with the feeling that it should have been more. Evans was a maddening wrestler in that he would almost always have slow matches, but he'd still flash glimpses of explosive offense. He cruised into the semifinals after beating arch nemesis, Logan Storley. He met up with his other arch nemesis in Matt Brown and wrestled tough. He came super close on a few takedowns but couldn't quite get it and lost 1-0. That was tough enough, but then he lost another two matches in sudden victory and in the first tiebreaker. So he ended his career losing his last three matches. Last year, it was the defensive pin that wasn't called against Chris Perry, and this year it was a bunch of almosts. For fans who watched Mike Evans, he'll be seen as a special wrestler, but without that asterisk, it will be tough for his name to stand the test of time.

184 - Sammy Brooks - 9 seed - Round of 12
Brooks kind of matched his seed, and his NCAA Tournament closely resembled Dziewa where he wrestled well but just got some really bad matchups. He won his first two matches to set up a rematch with eventual National Champion, Gabe Dean. He pushed the pace the entire match (and even got a stalling call on Dean) until Dean pulled off a takedown with a minute left in the final period. Brooks was charging hard, but Dean held on. He got sent to the consolation bracket where he got faced off against 3 seed, Blake Stauffer from Arizona State. Stauffer was a really bad matchup for Brooks, and he really took it to him. I think Brooks is better than the 9th best wrestler at 184, but he went up against the champion and fourth place finisher in back-to-back matches. It was a tough draw, but he will take over the title of "Guy I think is capable of absolutely anything whether that is reasonable or not" from Mike Kelly. Sammy Brooks brings it hard in every match, so I know he can compete with anybody at 184. A little more experience and he might ruin Gabe Dean's day next year.

197 - Nathan Burak - 6 seed - 7th Place
It may not look it from his finish this year, but Burak took a huge step forward this season. He was far better at snatching that single leg and turning it into points. He has really tightened up his game, and he's a dangerous wrestler at 197. He ran into Gadson, who absolutely peaked and wrestled incredibly well in every match this tournament (hence the national championship he won and the giant bowl of ice cream I am sure he received afterwards). After that, he lost to Morgan McIntosh, who is not a good matchup for Burak, but he kept it closer this time, so that's a positive step. Burak still has a redshirt year to use, and considering that Iowa loses 5 seniors this year, I wouldn't be surprised to see him sit out next year and prime himself for a big run in 2017.

Heavyweight - Bobby Telford - 3 seed - 5th Place
It is one of the most incredibly difficult things to be peaking for five matches over three days. Being a little flat and the wrong opponent can end the dream of a national title so easily. Telford was ranked third and went against an unseeded Spencer Myers from Maryland. He was unseeded because of a lack of matches this year, even though he was an All-American last year. He made one mistake early in the match and while he was fighting against the takedown, put himself in a bad spot where he got taken down and gave up two back points. He was aggressive in his comeback, but Myers was able to do enough to hold onto the lead. Then it was Consolation Bracket Bobby Telford who seriously wrestled like he didn't have a care in the world. He steamrolled dudes. Fall in 39 seconds, fall in 1:47. 9-2 win, 4-0 win, 2-0 win. He finally wasn't able to impose his will against Medberry and lost in sudden victory, but he came back to win 5th with a dominant 6-0 victory. He got a huge applause, and you could tell it was still a huge disappointment. Gwiazdowski from NC State looked dominant, but Telford is a tough matchup for anybody.

If things could have gone differently for these Iowa wrestlers in a single moment or single match, who knows what could have happened? But there are 330 qualifiers for the NCAA Tournament, and 320 are asking themselves the same question. What could have been? This wasn't the year for Iowa, on a team or individual level, but there are plenty of positive things to build on. And it's Iowa. They may lose five seniors, but they don't rebuild; they reload. They'll be one of the top five teams in the nation next year, and things may get tougher next year, but anything can happen at Nationals. That's what makes it such an incredible thing to watch.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

My Weird Obsession With Marcus Stroman

As I get older, I find myself becoming less of a sports fan. It just doesn't mean quite as much as it used to mean to me. When my team loses, they lose; it's not the end of my world, and that is what works for me. If you still live and die with your sports teams, that's awesome for you; I definitely come close when it comes to Iowa Wrestling, so I totally get it.

Nowhere is this more evident in picking a favorite player. It's not like any player is going to be my hero, or I will ever see them as unflappable. Even as a kid, this would be tougher as Twitter has given people a fuller picture of who an athlete is, or at least who he is for the general public. So instead of looking for larger than life heroes, I look toward the fringes. The guys who aren't otherworldly overall, but have one quality that make me say wow. Right now, my favorite hitters are Travis Snider, who I still totally believe in, and Chris Carter, because he hits the ball really hard, and that is really cool, even if he does strike out a ton along with that.

But my favorite pitcher is Marcus Stroman. He's way better than Travis Snider and has great potential to be a better player than Chris Carter, so it's not like I'm going out on a limb with him, but as for relating to players, this is the guy I get. He, like me, is a smaller guy. I'm 5'9" and Stroman is right around there as well. Our similarities mostly end there, as anyone who has ever seen me throw can attest. But still, Marcus Stroman represents the little guys, and that is why he is my guy.

That's why I was so bummed to hear he tore his ACL in a fielding drill. That story is just dumb. It's so stupid that he won't pitch this year because of a fluke injury. It's not anybody's fault, but it still sucks. Selfishly, I really wanted to draft Stroman this year, because I thought he was poised for a huge breakout year where he challenged for the Cy Young. I usually pick out one guy that I must have, and he was my guy this year. I usually write a recap of my fantasy drafts, and I was so obsessed with Stroman that I had already written the following paragraph in anticipation of drafting him.

He is the crown jewel for me. I want him more than any single player in this draft. Now, I could draft him in the first round, but I feel like that might slightly depress his value, so it is a matter of waiting. I am in a 12-team league, and I was eyeing him in the 11th round at pick 121. He was ranked around 160, so this seems safe enough, but I was terrified for a month going into my draft.

I refused to confirm that I had drafted him, as I thought that may jinx it. But it appears the above paragraph was enough to still do the job.

Now my fantasy draft means nothing in the grand scheme of things. I just really like Marcus Stroman as a player. Anybody who gets underrated because of their lack of size will always have a special place in my heart. And as Stroman says, HDMH, Height Doesn't Measure Heart. I can't wait to see what he does in 2016.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Marcus Mariota - 2015 NFL Draft Scouting Report

With the college football season over, the 2015 NFL Draft season immediately starts up to fill that void. I plan to take a look at all of the top quarterback prospects but will also be willing to take suggestions if there are prospects at other positions that you would like to see analyzed. But my bread and butter is quarterback play (a position I still feel is underrated in the draft). Today, I wrap up the series by taking a look at Oregon Ducks Quarterback, Marcus Mariota.

Statistically speaking, you cannot get much better than Mariota. He absolutely dominated during his final college season and led the Oregon Ducks to the National Championship game. Most casual football fans assumed that he would be the first quarterback taken, because Winston threw more interceptions and interceptions are bad. As I'm writing this, Winston has gained the edge, but I'm not really worried about consensus, I'm worried with how these guys produce. Courtesy of Draft Breakdown, I was able to take a look at his 2014 games against Michigan State, Florida State, and Ohio State.

Awareness
The first thing that people seem to bring up with Marcus Mariota is that his offense made him tough to evaluate. Honestly, I don't think scouting an Oregon player is more difficult than scouting an Alabama player. For Oregon, it is scheme that gives them an advantage, but Alabama brings in nothing but the best recruits so it is easier for a player to shine with all of that talent around them. With the efficiency in the design of Oregon's offense, I was worried that Mariota wouldn't have to go through progressions on throws. For the most part, this was true, but he did have plays where it was necessary, and he showed aptitude. This is a good example:

He looks to his left, but then works his eyes back towards the middle where he sees that his receiver has a step on the defender. Even with good coverage, there is not much you can do when a quarterback throws a ball like that.

Pocket Presence
If you give him a comfortable pocket, he can carve up a defense. Once the pressure comes crashing in, he takes a lot of sacks and will too often throw off his back foot. Here is a play where he sees pressure coming but has plenty of space to step up and make a throw.

Unfortunately, he throws off his back foot and misses a wide open receiver. He's going to have to learn to throw in tight pockets, so not being able to step into a throw like that is definitely worrisome.

This is another example of Mariota adjusting his throwing motion when the pocket closes in on him.

He likely has enough room to make that throw, but he hesitates on it, and then short arms the throw.

Still, it's not all bad, as he did show the ability to move well in the pocket on this play.

He starts by looking to his right, adeptly slips a rusher, sees that things are still crowded in front of him, so he looks up, spots an open receiver and makes a touchdown throw.

Wow Plays
Full disclosure: I take notes while I watch the games, and I pressed pause and wrote, "I keep saying that he is very good, but I never get the feeling of greatness." Then I watched the very next play and started laughing at my stupidity.

There is so much that is right with this play. First off, the throw is great, but that pales in comparison as to what he does mentally here. Marshall is his third option on this play, but he is so quick at going through his reads that it doesn't matter. His first option is the tight end, but the linebacker in zone takes away that, so he looks to his left but the receiver on the outside is not open, he works his eyes back to the middle and fires a great pass to his receiver who is streaking open.

The issue that people have with Mariota is the offense. He wasn't asked to do the same things that Winston was required to do. Still, he showed flashes of having any ability that an NFL team is looking for. The biggest question mark I am left with is whether he is willing to trust his arm and pull the trigger by throwing into tight coverage. The physical capabilities are there; it's just a matter of believing he can squeeze the ball into tight windows.

Overall
There is a reason that everybody puts Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston far ahead of all of hte other quarterbacks in this draft. Although I have found myself liking the skills that Brett Hundley brings to the table, he is a step below these two quarterbacks. But this is the (likely) the last guy I will be looking at, so who's #1? Well, it really depends on what you want.

Marcus Mariota gets really bad comparisons. He gets compared to Colin Kaepernick, but he has less arm strength but maintains a tighter delivery, makes more accurate throws, and is far better at reading a field. I have also heard Alex Smith, but I think he is a far more dangerous quarterback in every aspect than Smith. The guy I see is Randall Cunningham. He doesn't quite have the arm, but he makes up for it with his accuracy. Meanwhile, I see Winston as a non-athletic Andrew Luck. They both make stupid throws, but they also do incredible things when it matters, and they are guys who find ways to win.

When it comes down to it, the offense that you want your team to run should be the difference maker between the two prospects. Jameis Winston fits that bill for more teams than Marcus Mariota, but Mariota would be good in a Winston offense, while Winston drops off quite a bit if asked to do what Mariota does. In the end, I have Winston a hair ahead of Mariota, as Winston has consistently displayed the ability to stand tall under pressure and deliver passes while Mariota has only flashed it. Off the field, there are plenty of question marks, but on the field, Jameis is the best talent in this draft.

Quarterback Prospect Rankings:
1. Jameis Winston - Florida State
2. Marcus Mariota - Oregon
3. Brett Hundley - UCLA
4. Shane Carden - East Carolina
5. Bryce Petty - Baylor
6. Sean Mannion - Oregon State
7. Garrett Grayson - Colorado State
8. Blake Sims - Alabama

Monday, March 16, 2015

Another Date Night Watching WWE NXT

It had been a while since I had treated my wife to a wonderful evening of watching pro wrestling, so it was time for us to go to another NXT house show. Tickets are $10 for general admission, so it is an incredible deal, especially considering that general admission means rows 3-5. Also, even though my wife doesn't really care about professional wrestling, she enjoys watching me, as I do morph into a 12-year-old who has a permanent smile on my face while watching live wrestling. I'm lucky to have found someone who finds it cute and charming instead of sad and pathetic.

Let me just start by saying that I failed yet again to get a picture with Norman Smiley. I truly suck at this, as I saw him out of the corner of my eye as he was walking by and I was giving my ID to get my tickets. I should have just stopped what I was doing to achieve the goal, but I froze, and I never got another chance to express my gratitude to the man who invented the Big Wiggle. I suck, and I must find a way to make this happen.

As for other former superstars there, nobody of note...oh, except Mick Foley was randomly there simply as a spectator. He just sat in the front row by the entrance and watched the whole event. He did nothing during the event and was simply there to watch these guys wrestle.

But let's get to the wrestling with a quick match by match recap.

Anna Brock vs. Bailey
I had never seen Anna Brock before, but she's got some guns on her, and she flexes them a lot. Like that may be the extent of her gimmick, check out my muscular arms. Considering she must be fairly new, it's not too bad of a gimmick, because she does have the arms to pull it off. Bailey was Bailey, who was pretty solid and won the match with a Belly-to-Bailey suplex.

Chad Gable vs. Solomon Crowe
Chad Gable is fairly new, but he has some potential as a legit wrestler who can incorporate that into his pro wrestling. He was fairly entertaining, but the biggest takeaway from this match was that Crowe got rid of his really shitty splash finisher in favor of a submission.

Steve Cutler vs. Baron Corbin
Steve Cutler is a military guy, so you would think he was the good guy, but he came out to metal music, and posed more as a bad guy. He was kind of Lance Storm-esque in persona, but he ain't there with in-ring skills. Baron Corbin took a little offense before powering up and ragdolling Cutler.

Big Cass and Carmella vs. Marcus Louis and Devin Taylor
This was my wife's favorite match, as she was a huge Carmella fan and Devin Taylor lasted one episode on this year's Bachelor. The latter makes sense, but the former really confused me. But my wife is all in on Carmella and also likes Big Cass and Enzo Amore as they have fun sayings and they were 100% over with the crowd. From a personal standpoint, this was the moment where it hit me how gigantic wrestlers are. Marcus Louis is an above average sized wrestler, but he's not considered huge, but he was standing in the corner near where we were sitting, and let me tell you, that dude is huge. He is a massive human being, and sometimes people forget how big wrestlers are, even the guys who aren't considered that big. Unfortunately Taylor and Louis were S-A-W-F-T, SAWFT.

Ty Dillinger vs. Hugo Knox
Ty Dillinger has a new gimmick where he comes out after matches and rates them on a scale of 1-10. He considers himself a perfect 10. Who is Hugo Knox? Hugo Knox is probably my new favorite wrestler. He is a Manchester, England club dancer who has stupid tattoos, polka dot trunks and LOVES to West Coast Dance. Is he good in the ring? No, not really. But the more important question is whether he is totally awesome, and the answer to that one is a definitive yes. Dude danced so hard. He won the match and danced some more. I cannot wait for Hugo Knox to debut on television.

Mike Rallis vs. Bull Dempsey
Who is Mike Rallis? Not sure, honestly. Who is Bull Dempsey? A fat guy with a mean streak. This match happened. It wasn't terrible, but outside of Dempsey hitting his flying headbutt, nothing memorable happened.

Alexa Bliss Vs. Becky Lynch
I remember this being one of my favorite matches of the night. It was a good back and forth match with some of the few rare finishes that I was actually buying. Becky Lynch got the win, because poor Alexa can't get wins on sparkles alone.

CJ Parker vs. Hideo Itami
CJ Parker is who he is. He's fine in the ring; his gimmick is mildly entertaining, and he's basically in the same place he was two years ago. Hideo Itami was a guy who came in with a lot of hype due to being one of the biggest stars in Japan, but he hasn't really been all that impressive so far from what I saw on NXT. That being said, Hideo Itami is AWESOME in person. His style was really cool to see up close, and I finally get why people were so excited about him. Eventually, he is going to start using the GTS, and people are going to freak out. Needless to say, I am fully on board the Hideo Itami bandwagon.

Itami is great, but he's still no Hugo Knox.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A Guy's Thoughts On The Bachelor: Season 19

I am a guy. I have all of the necessary parts to prove it, and not only am I a guy by sex, but also by gender. I identify as a guy. Also, I watch The Bachelor. In fact, I thoroughly enjoy The Bachelor. These facts make me the quintessential source on everything that happened on this season. I have thoughts, oh, I have so many thoughts on The Bachelor. I have been keeping them inside, but these thoughts are bubbling up, and they are about to explode all over this blog.

The Bachelor
A lot of people think Chris is boring and stupid. Let me assure you that if you knew nothing about Chris but what you saw on this show, you could even feel quite confident in calling him boring and stupid. As a connoisseur of The Bachelor, I can assure you that Chris may be the smartest Bachelor in history (this may not be saying much). Chris played the game perfectly. Now, as The Bachelor, he shouldn't have to play a game; all the ladies are there for him. But he wasn't playing a game for love, he was playing a game for public approval, and he obtained an incredibly high approval rating with viewers by just not messing up.

Sure, it's cool to make out with all the ladies, but where he truly excelled was in his order of eliminations. This man never eliminated a woman who did something interesting. Let's take a look back.

Get so wasted you can barely stand the first night?
Stick around, he doesn't want to offend any alcoholics.

You randomly do crazy shit and can't tell the difference between a pomegranate and an onion?
Maybe in another week, you'll learn, so he can't kick you out on the streets without fruit smarts.

You've already been so wasted that you had to be eliminated, but now you want to come back?
Sure, everybody deserves a second chance.

Have a child?
Have a rose and leave that child alone in the apartment for another week. If a cat can survive being left alone for weeks, so can a baby.

You resemble a Kardashian and tell him you're a virgin?
You just bought yourself an extra week.

Your husband died?
That's an amazing story. Have a rose to cheer you up.

You don't shower?
How about you get showered in cheers at a Big and Rich concert.

Oh, another virgin?
I guess you get to make the final two instead of the precious flower that is Kaitlyn.

Literally, any girl who stood out got to stick around for at least another week. Chris was the least offensive Bachelor in history, and that takes incredible self-control. Everybody seems to love the farmer from Iowa, but Iowa people are better than other people, so I can't say I'm surprised.

The Ladies
But we need to talk about the ladies. First off, there is Alissa, Amanda, Amber, Bo, Brittany, Jordan, Juelia, Kara, Kimberly, Mackenzie, Michelle, Nicole, Nikki, Reegan, Samantha, Tandra, Tara, Tracy, and Trina. Although some of these women had some moments, none of them are worth revisiting. Let's talk about the essential ladies from the show.

Although she only lasted a few weeks, there are few Bachelor contestants that made as much of an impact as Ashley S. She was given the task of shooting zombies, but she wanted to shoot the other ladies. That's just smart. Then she showed she was fearless by walking into the fog towards the zombies, as she believed in the power of love. She's an insane person, and I am really happy that Chris Harrison demanded that she participate in the weird Bachelor stepchildren shows to keep her in my life. She is crazy...crazy awesome. Ashley S, you get it, girl.

The battle between Ashley I. and Kelsey was one I could do without. A lot of people thought Kelsey was the worse person in this situation, but it was definitely Ashley I. Ashley I. was not entertaining. She just existed and cried. Anybody can cry, but it takes something special to have Kelsey's story. Her story is amazing, and her lack of self-awareness is even more amazing. Did I have my doubts that she ever had a husband? Yes, yes I did. Did I look it up on the internet to make sure she had one? Yes, yes I did. I had to. There was something so off with her. Something so inhuman that there was no way that everything about her was real. But it was all real. She's a total sociopath. I hope she finds love with Juan Pablo.

Apparently, there was a girl named Megan who lasted until Week 7. She looks vaguely familiar, but I have zero memories of her. Just thought I should bring that up.

Carly kept it real. She knew she was going home, so she used her last moments to bury Britt. I was shocked that she was getting booed at the Women Tell All reunion. She had a good sense of humor and seemed like a pretty cool chick. I think she got a raw deal with how people reacted, and I want you to know, Carly, I got your back.

Speaking of having Carly's back, this brings me to Jillian who didn't last that long, but she was THE WORST person ever during the Women Tell All. She just kept butting in on things. And yes, if Carly said she had a dick, that's a shitty thing to say to a buff chick like Jillian (or really any lady in general), but your weird protective nature of Britt made everyone uncomfortable, and I would have way rather watched you do box squats.

Jade was the only woman to drop a bombshell and not move on. Being a drunk is cool, lack of cleanliness is also cool, but posing naked early on in life is not cool. I have a buddy who was all about Jade, and I get it. She's attractive in that "Could be in Playboy but is made for Penthouse" sort of way, but I would have liked to see more of her wildside, which I was able to when I Googled images of her.

The Important Ladies
I'm not saying the other ladies weren't important, but when you look at this season, these four ladies held the most prominent roles. Let's start with the champ.

Was Whitney the right pick? Yes, I think Chris did a good job. She seems like a very nice person, was all about moving to Iowa, and her last name is Bischoff. That's a triple threat, and you just know that her uncle Eric played a part in pushing Chris towards making the right decision. I'm not saying the threat of an Elimination Chamber was brought up, but I'm also not saying it wasn't. Also, I would be quick with your vows if I were you Chris. Don't make them go on too long, especially not three minutes too long.

Becca was very interesting in that she was clearly gunning for The Bachelorette. She did everything to disqualify herself from being selected in the final episodes. When she got dumped, you could see it in her eyes that she was telling herself to look sad, but was plotting what dates she would plan when she had a season all to herself. Now, obviously, her strategy did not lead to her becoming The Bachelorette(s), but honestly, it was a great strategy. She is an attractive woman who has the whole virgin thing going for her for added intrigue, so on paper, she would have made an excellent candidate to be the next Bachelorette. Unfortunately, she underestimated one area. She is completely uninteresting. What do I know about Becca outside of her being a virgin? She currently lives in San Diego, and the only reason I remember that is I thought it was crazy for anyone who lives in San Diego to move to Iowa. She also knew it was crazy, so good for her. Unfortunately, she will drift from everyone's memory and fade away, but still, I want to give her props for her strategy as it's that kind of forward thinking that will get you ahead in this world.

There may be some extra sting for Becca considering the next season of The Bachelorette(s).

So, yeah, there are two Bachelorettes for next season. Britt and Kaitlyn will be sharing the honor. I know the audience is like 90% female, so ladies, why did you like Britt? I mean, yeah, as a guy, I get it. She's very attractive and seems like she would be a pleaser when it comes to the hibbity dibbity. But these shows are rightfully geared towards women, and the women in the audience seemed to really like Britt. Is it just that she cries a lot? Because I get it, sympathy is nice, but man, she broke a lot of the unwritten rules of The Bachelor, and women are like baseball players when it comes to the sanctity of the unwritten rules. But Britt got a pass and became one half of The Bachelorette.

As for the other half of The Bachelorette, I am very happy that there will be more Kaitlyn in my life. I was Team Kaitlyn from the very first episode, and I stayed true the entire time. She is wonderful. Now, Kaitlyn may not be the most traditionally pretty girl that was on this season, but I'm past the point where I need traditionally pretty, because that shit's boring. Kaitlyn has charisma; she has the "It" factor, and that made me far more attracted to her than any other girl on this season.

From beginning to end, Kaitlyn kept it real. She kept things lighthearted early on, and she put up walls to protect her heart. When she finally let those walls down, she was hurt, and I can never fully forgive Chris for hurting this precious angel. But him hurting her has led her to become a Bachelorette, so I can't be all that mad.

But about that decision. The Bachelor/ette people were really counting on it being even applause for both of those girls, but it was about ten times louder for my girl Kaitlyn. She clearly should have been the single Bachelorette, but this problem will probably take care of itself when every guy on the first episode goes for Kaitlyn, and Britt has to hitch-hike her way home.

Maybe it's her dance moves, maybe it's her explicit raps, and maybe I just have a weird thing for Canadians, but I'm #TeamKaitlyn all the way. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Brett Hundley - 2015 NFL Draft Scouting Report

With the college football season over, the 2015 NFL Draft season immediately starts up to fill that void. I plan to take a look at all of the top quarterback prospects but will also be willing to take suggestions if there are prospects at other positions that you would like to see analyzed. But my bread and butter is quarterback play (a position I still feel is underrated in the draft). Today, I am taking a look at UCLA Bruins Quarterback, Brett Hundley.

Brett Hundley is the most interesting prospect who is generating the least amount of buzz. Almost all buzz is dedicated to Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston, as they are universally regarded as the top two prospects in the draft. Still, there were plenty of times before this year where Hundley was also seen as a possible top pick in the draft. He didn't really regress during his final year at UCLA, but he also didn't progress much either, and it gave people plenty of time to find the holes in his skill-set. So now the questions become, has the scouting community gone too far, and could Hundley be the answer for teams looking for a quarterback who miss out on the big two? Thanks to Draft Breakdown, I was able to look at his 2014 games against Arizona, USC, and Utah. Unfortunately, Draft Breakdown changed how they do their videos, and since I'm not tech savvy, I can't get them to embed on the blog, so I'll try to be more colorful with my words to paint a beautiful picture of what Hundley does as a prospect. 

Reads
Hundley is able to read a field well, as he stays on his toes and bounces from one read to the next. He's very light on his feet, so he is able to bounce on his toes as he scans from one side of the field to the other. He showed the ability to scan the field and make the necessary throws when he recognizes an open receiver. For as low as people are on Hundley, I was shocked at how smooth he was in his progressions as that is one of the most common aspects that college quarterbacks struggle with. 

Pocket Presence
The Utah game stood out for all the wrong reasons when it came to pocket presence. He exhibited absolutely no feel for pressure, and he repeatedly stood in the pocket while he waited for a sack (the second play from the Utah game is a great example). It was inexplicable at times, as it looked like a video game where you accidentally drop the controller, and although you are scrambling to regain control, your quarterback on the screen just stands there and helplessly takes the sack. 

I have never seen a quarterback be more hesitant than Hundley was in the Utah game. He just held onto that ball like he was waiting for the sack to come. The only time he scrambled was when he slipped a pass rusher and just started to move forward from that. Otherwise, he just sat there, waiting for a single guy to get open before getting taken down. There was one time where Utah sent a double A gap blitz, and Hundley's body language clearly states, "Aw shit," as he just buries his head and takes what's coming to him.

The positive with Hundley is that the Utah game was only the second conference game where the USC game was near the end of the season, and he showed tremendous progress between those two games. Hundley admitted that he was purposely trying to stay in the pocket to display his skills to NFL scouts, but although it's not a good idea to always bail, he can't just stay there and take sacks either, so finding a balance will be essential.

He does display the ability to step up in the pocket and make throws, but even when he does that, he doesn't always work to the best possible place to make his throws as he'll step up but into a pretty tight area. A lot of times, he has just enough room to make his throw, but if he moves in a slightly different angle, he would have a much cleaner look.

If you want to see the most positive play from Hundley, you can find it at 5:35 of the game against USC. The throw is nothing special, but the way he is able to step up in the pocket to deliver the ball gives me that hope that he may be able to learn enough pocket presence to become a viable starting quarterback in the NFL. He actually probably should have had more room, but Leonard Williams put on a really slick spin move to go from outside to inside the offensive tackle, but Hundley was still able to fire the ball into his receiver without being disrupted.

Another positive factor is when he is able to work outside of the pocket, he can escape pressure while still keeping his eyes on targets down the field.

Ball Security
Another thing that I noticed was a consistent fumbling issue. It was only three games, but he struggled with taking snaps, handoffs, and holding onto the ball when running. It's not something I put a lot of stock in for quarterbacks, because I think all of these issues can be solved, but it is something to keep an eye on. 

Mobility
Brett Hundley is a very good athlete, but he is not a great scrambling quarterback as he has terrible vision as a runner.
Just runs into the defense instead of cutting up field to get a first down.

Arm
First off, he has the arm strength and enough accuracy to make all the necessary throws. I cannot imagine that anyone will be questioning his arm capabilities when evaluating him. With that said, he wasn't always able to show off his skill-set. UCLA's offense was not designed to take advantage of space over the middle as they were far more likely to attack the sidelines, but in the opportunities that he was given, Hundley does a nice job of putting the ball either in front of his receivers or away from defenders on his throws over the middle. This might be a hidden strength that he was not able to fully take advantage of during college because of scheme.

I mentioned his ability to read the field above, but something else that he does incredibly well is using his eyes to move defenders. There were multiple examples of him looking at one side of the field to move the safety over before bouncing to the other direction and throwing a deep ball to his receiver who was covered by a corner with no help over the top. That is an incredibly valuable skill that will transition well to the next level.

Overall
I'll admit to being down on him far before most people were, but it has gotten to the point where people are going too far in their criticisms of him. I will admit that I got angry as I watched him take sack after sack against Utah, but he also laid out two of the best deep balls you will ever see, one of which where the process was even better than the throw.

I'm about to drop the meanest comparison possible on him, so brace yourselves...he reminds me of Blaine Gabbert. They are very similar in build, athleticism, and their throwing capabilities. Now, I was incredibly low on Gabbert out of college, but I'm actually much higher on Hundley, because of a few key differences. The biggest one is that Gabbert never learned to scan a field. His entire offense was high-low reads, and he was in bad shape if that wasn't open. Hundley is very smooth in reading the field and also showed the ability to move safeties with his eyes. The latter is more subtle, but it is how they deal with pressure. They are both terrible at it, but in different ways. Hundley just lacks awareness when it comes to a rush but shows flashes of feeling things and moving away from pressure. Gabbert felt pressure but his instincts told him to bail and it led him to sprint backwards a lot of times. Obviously, Gabbert was a total bust, but Hundley has shown flashes of potential in his area of weakness. I don't know if pocket awareness is something that Brett Hundley can learn, but if it's the end of the first round and I need a quarterback, I'm probably going to be willing to find out.

Quarterback Prospect Rankings:
1. Jameis Winston - Florida State
2. Brett Hundley - UCLA
3. Shane Carden - East Carolina
4. Bryce Petty - Baylor
5. Sean Mannion - Oregon State
6. Garrett Grayson - Colorado State
7. Blake Sims - Alabama

Monday, March 9, 2015

The 3 Coolest Things About WWE's Crush

The WWE Network is built for nostalgia, and I every few episodes of Raw, I will come across that a guy that I liked way too much or didn't appreciate enough. Crush falls into the former category, as I thought Crush was really cool. When watching now, I am wondering what I thought was so cool, so I decided to break down the three coolest things about Crush in the eyes of a child.

1. Demolition
I thought Demolition was awesome, because I was a WWF kid, so although I was aware that the Road Warriors were awesome, I thought Demolition was just as cool. When looking back, Hawk and Animal actually were awesome, where Axe and Smash were kind of flabby S+M-looking perverts. Anyway, Crush joined the team towards the end, so he had a lot of built in credibility from being associated with Demolition.

2. "Brudder"
A few years later he came back as a Hawaiian who said "Brudder" a lot. I thought that this was both exotic and totally badass.

3. Kona Crush
The coolest thing as a kid is also the lamest thing as an adult. His finisher was the Kona Crush where he basically just squeezed a dude's head until they gave up. The reason this is so awesome for a kid is that kids are small and weak, so being strong enough to just squeeze a man into submission is an amazing fantasy to live vicariously through a wrestler.

After a year of being a cool Hawaiian dude who beat up Doink the Clown for being mean to kids, he "hurt" his back trying to bodyslam Yokozuna and became a Japanese sympathizer, because Macho Man didn't call to check up on him while he was recovering. He then bounced around various tag teams and various organizations over the next few years until retiring due to real back issues.

Like too many wrestling stories, he passed away in 2007 at age 43. Maybe Crush wasn't built for the modern-day cynical adult, but he was still cool by me, brudder.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Suits Power Rankings - #SuitsFinale

And so we have reached that time, another Suits season is in the books. Since they split these seasons into small little bursts of episodes, I think this is the end of season 56. You can check out my recap of the penultimate episode here. It has been a great run, and there is no better way to pay homage to the best show about lawyers playing with my first ever power rankings done entirely in Haiku.

1. Harvey Specter
From hot shot lawyer
To being the grizzled vet
He has ev'rything.

2. Donna Paulsen 
Hunts for young lawyers
The best barista around
Never pays for drink.

3. Rachel Zane
No one respects her.
She tries exposing secrets.
Now she's got a ring.

4. Mike Ross
Has a hot GF
Decides to drop to one knee.
Uh, Mike, that's her job.

5. Marcus Specter
Just a simple man.
With a PokerStars account.
Damn offshore gambling.

6. Sean Cahill
Have you seen the cash?
Hey man, where's all that cheddar?
Can't find the money.

7. Charles Forstman
Screws people over.
"Shoe's gonna be on the other foot"
is what losers say.

8. Jessica Pearson
She's running her firm
Because that is all she's got
And lots of dresses.

9. Louis Marlo Litt
Louis has to grieve
Better to have battle-axe
Than just an axe wound.

10. Jeff Malone
A true mailman
Jeff knew how to deliver
Never on Sundays.

11. Eric Woodall 
Woodall has problems.
Joke about mental illness?
I think I will pass.

12. Norma
Norma, oh Norma
It is time to go to work.
Death is no excuse

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Bryce Petty - 2015 NFL Draft Scouting Report

With the college football season over, the 2015 NFL Draft season immediately starts up to fill that void. I plan to take a look at all of the top quarterback prospects but will also be willing to take suggestions if there are prospects at other positions that you would like to see analyzed. But my bread and butter is quarterback play (a position I still feel is underrated in the draft). Today, I am taking a look at Baylor Bears Quarterback, Bryce Petty.

Much like Marcus Mariota, Bryce Petty has people questioning his accomplishments at the college level based on the offense that he performed in. Unfortunately for Petty, that is where the comparisons basically stop for Petty as he is not seen as a top talent in this year's draft. Art Briles has set up an offense for his quarterbacks to be successful, but it's tough to say whether that will translate to the NFL level. After Robert Griffin III's rookie year, people argued that he was better than Andrew Luck. Those people were most definitely wrong, but I'm not ready to label RG3 as a bust yet as health combined with a consistent offensive scheme may be all he needs to be an upper-echelon quarterback in the NFL. But I'm not here to talk about Mariota, Luck, or RG3, I'm here to talk about Bryce Petty. Thanks to Draft Breakdown, I was able to look at his 2014 games against West Virginia and Kansas State as well as a 2013 game against Oklahoma.

Mobility
Let's get this out of the way. Petty in no way resembles RG3 when it comes to speed. Although they would run a read option with Petty, that did not play to his strengths as shown here.

He's not completely immobile, but no coach at the pro level will consistently call read options with Petty.

Pocket Awareness
He doesn't have a great feel for when pressure is coming on him, as he will often stand in the pocket and make no movements to avoid pressure. This is the most egregious example.

Petty has to know that he has to get rid of the ball quickly when he is standing in his own endzone. His first option wasn't open, but he should have an automatic read at that point to get rid of the football in any way possible. Instead, he waits and gets nailed by a blitzer coming off the edge on his blindside.

Here is an even more egregious example against West Virginia.

The blindside may be acceptable, but he consistently takes the full brunt of hits, which will definitely lead to sacks, likely fumbles, and probable injuries.

When Bryce Petty feels pressure, his first instinct is to run. It was rare that he was able to move within the pocket to avoid a rush and complete a pass.

Here he adjusts to the pressure well and has a pocket to throw from, but he puts his head down and just plows forward. I will admit that this is a problem with the sideline camera, as there is no way to tell what routes Baylor's receivers were running, and considering the propensity to go deep, there may not have been a reasonable route to throw to. The point still stands as he bails out on passing when feeling pressure, and he's simply not athletic enough to make that work consistently.

Decision Making
Petty has to trust his arm. In Baylor's offense, he got accustomed to guys being wide open for his throws, but he has to be willing to challenge defenders and trust his receivers to make plays. This is an excellent example of when he hesitated and it cost him.

He sees his receiver running open on a slant and is ready to throw but he doesn't trust that he can fit the ball in there due to a closing pocket or closing coverage, but this is a throw that he simply has to make. After he doesn't, it's just a matter of time before Oklahoma brings him down for the sack.

He's a little slow on the draw when it comes to throwing the football. Instead of anticipating his receiver making his move on the comeback, he waits for that receiver to make the move before throwing the ball.

This ball was completed, but that was because of great protection and the defender sinking too far off in coverage. If he consistently waits that long, it's a great way to throw costly interceptions.

Accuracy
One thing that I did like about Petty on his slants is that he did a very good job of leading receivers. He understood where his receivers were going as opposed to where they were.

This is a ball that he has to deliver with velocity to avoid the middle linebacker, and he puts it in front of his receiver who is able to gain big yards after the catch because of the placement of the ball. You could nitpick that it was a little out in front, but I'll take that ball on a slant nine out of ten times (Super Bowl excluded).

Summary
This report probably seems like the most negative one that I have written, but I'm not that down on Bryce Petty. The problem with Petty is that I kept waiting for throws to wow me, and I just didn't see them. It was all slants and deep balls, and the deep ball accuracy was nothing special. Their whole offense is designed to consistently beat a defense underneath until the big play opens up over the top. Bryce Petty is totally fine when it is pitch and catch. When things go wrong, it usually doesn't end well as Petty fails to adjust to pressure. But nothing is all that bad. He can scan the field, has decent mechanics, solid arm strength, but I keep coming back to the same conclusion. The whole package is nothing special. I don't see him as a starter in the NFL, but I wouldn't be surprised at all if he was able to stick around for a while as a backup who comes in and doesn't kill you. There is value in having a guy like that, and in a very weak draft class, I could see that being enough to be a fourth or fifth round pick.

Quarterback Prospect Rankings:
1. Jameis Winston - Florida State
2. Shane Carden - East Carolina
3. Bryce Petty - Baylor
4. Sean Mannion - Oregon State
5. Garrett Grayson - Colorado State
6. Blake Sims - Alabama

Monday, March 2, 2015

Joel Gertner Is Still Hilarious To Me

I'm an adult. I'm 30 years old and have a wife. I am no longer a child. Yet still, as I watch old ECW clips on WWE Network, I can't help but laugh at Joel Gertner's one liners. It is the very definition of working blue, so if you don't like dick jokes, this guy is probably not for you (rhyming definitely on purpose). And every time I do, I feel bad about it, but I understand that I cannot change this behavior, and I will always find Joel Gertner hilarious.

Oh, yeah, many of you are probably wondering who the hell Joel Gertner is. That is a totally fair question. As I mentioned, ECW, and he wasn't Sandman or RVD either. So he was a manager most known for helping out with the Dudley Family. After that, all you really need to know is that he only spoke in sexual innuendo one liners. And yeah, I do mean ONLY sexual innuendo one liners. He referred to himself as, "The Sexual Intellectual," "The Lyrical Miracle," and most famously "The Quintessential Studmuffin."

There's really nothing more I can provide outside of these videos, and assuring you that I laughed incredibly hard at every one of them.





So whether you're a fan or a hater, there will be more next week so be sure to come back later, next week I could write about Sting or Vader, and I think we can all see where this is going, even without a telestrator, but I don't need to work blue when I'm the creator, and this blog also talks about Iowa a lot, so three cheers for former Hawkeye, Shaun Prater.