The Kevin Dodd experiment should be over now

SAN DIEGO, CA - NOVEMBER 06:  Kevin Dodd #93 of the Tennessee Titans pulls down  Melvin Gordon #28 of the San Diego Chargers during the first half at Qualcomm Stadium on November 6, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

The Titans drafted Kevin Dodd No. 33 overall in 2016 to be an explosive pass rusher. The former Clemson defensive lineman was expected to convert to outside linebacker and be a force off the edge for a team that needed to bolster their outside pass rush. Unfortunately, it looks like the high point of Dodd’s Titans tenure will be the night he was drafted.

Dodd rarely saw the field in his early transition to outside linebacker. He averaged only 19.9 snaps per game in his first nine contests and produced only one sack. A foot injury forced him out of action for the rest of the season after Week 10.nfl cheap jerseys nike

SAN DIEGO, CA - NOVEMBER 06: Kevin Dodd #93 of the Tennessee Titans pulls down Melvin Gordon #28 of the San Diego Chargers during the first half at Qualcomm Stadium on November 6, 2016 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CA – NOVEMBER 06: Kevin Dodd #93 of the Tennessee Titans pulls down Melvin Gordon #28 of the San Diego Chargers during the first half at Qualcomm Stadium on

His return to the field in 2017 didn’t go much better. He didn’t get onto the field until Week 3 and only averaged 10.2 snaps in nine games. He was inactive for several games.

New head coach Mike Vrabel and the Titans’ coaching staff were going to give Dodd another shot despite his past disappointments. He wasn’t producing as an outside linebacker, but there was an opportunity to carve out a role as a defensive end –nfl nike jerseys for cheap  the position where Dodd thrived in college.

The relationship between Dodd and the new staff didn’t get off to a great start when he skipped the final portion of the team’s voluntary offseason work. While it was not a good look for Dodd, it was forgivable since the workouts were not mandatory.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

However, the problem grew when he was a limited participant in the mandatory minicamp. It was further exacerbated Sunday when Dodd did not report to training camp.

This was a crucial offseason if Dodd was going to save his NFL career, and his level of commitment toward making the roster hasn’t reflected the urgency of the situation.

Dodd has talent. His dominant fourth year at Clemson showed that. We certainly hope all is well with him and his family, but if he simply missed his specified reporting date, then it’s hard to believe the Titans won’t cut ties with the 26-year-old.nike cheap nfl jerseys

He was already was someone who needed to have a strong camp to make the team, but he is not making himself look any better nike nfl cheap jerseys with his lack of participation in the offseason. The experiment with Dodd has gone wrong from the beginning, and there is no coming back from this if he is indeed missing camp for no other reason than not wanting to report.

Jurrell Casey in London promoting NFL, Titans-Chargers Week 7 matchup

Dec 31, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey (99) celebrates beating the Jacksonville Jaguars to earn a playoff spot at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Titans’ Week 7 matchup against the Chargers will mark their first ever game in London.

Defensive lineman Jurrell Casey took a trip nike nfl jerseys cheap china across the Atlantic to help promote the NFL as the league aims to expand its fan base beyond the United States.

He was joined by Chargers linebacker Kyle Emanuel in a video posted by the Titans’ Twitter account.

Dec 31, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey (99) celebrates beating the Jacksonville Jaguars to earn a playoff spot at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 31, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey (99) celebrates beating the Jacksonville Jaguars to earn a playoff spot at Nissan Stadium.

First things first: Those new Titans jerseys look really sharp. The contrast between the dark blue and the two-tone gray shoulders is a really nice touch.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

It would also be cool if Casey started to get more national recognition. Teams didn’t necessarily send their best players to London for the promotional tour, but it’s cool to see Casey representing the Titans. He’s one of the league’s unheralded dominant players and he deserves more love. Promotional events like this should help a little bit.

The defensive lineman also ran into some Titans fans across the pond.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Hopefully those guys are all at that Week 7 matchup.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping  Tennessee is technically the visiting team at Wembley Stadium, but it would be good for them to have a little bit of a home field advantage against a very good Chargers team.

OG Joshua Garnett, San Francisco 49ers

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Plenty is working against Joshua Garnett as he prepares for his third NFL campaign. Yet, he still has a chance to emerge as the San Francisco 49ers’ starting right guard.

“I think Josh is putting together a pretty nice improvement pattern,” buy nike nfl jerseys cheap offensive line coach John Benton told The Athletic’s Ted Nguyen.

Garnett, whom the 49ers selected in the first round of the 2016 NFL draft, is no longer an ideal system fit for the team’s offense. Kyle Shanahan’s zone stretch usually features lighter and more athletic blockers, whereas Garnett came out of a power scheme when he won the Outland Trophy as a member of the Stanford Cardinal. As a result, Garnett spent the offseason reshaping his body and is down to 305 pounds, according to s Nick Wagoner. cheap nfl nike jerseys china

The third-year lineman spent all of last season on injured reserve after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, and he returned a different blocker.

“I see a guy who’s really going for it,” Shanahan said, nfl nike jersey cheap per the Sacramento Bee’s Matt Barrows. “I’ve been very proud of how he’s handled his year off.”

Garnett should be ready to overcome another first-round pick, Jonathan Cooper, in the upcoming guard competition. If not, another team better suited for his skill set could land a potential starter.

Vic Beasley, Atlanta Falcons

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The Atlanta Falcons made a mistake with their handling of 2015 first-round pick Vic Beasley, and the organization is trying to rectify the situation.

Beasley became the eighth overall pick because he could harass opposing quarterbacks. Since the collegiate defensive end didn’t fit prototypical standards (6’3″, 246 lbs), the coaching staff moved him to linebacker and only used him as an nfl nike jerseys cheap edge-rusher in sub-packages.

Beasley led the NFL in 2016 with 15.5 sacks only to see his production drop to five sacks last season.

“I wasn’t rushing as much as I normally would,” Beasley said, per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s D. Orlando Ledbetter. “There were less opportunities, but it was for the betterment of the team and what the team needed most at that moment. I was fine with that.”

What’s best for the Falcons is unleashing Beasley as a pass-rusher. He’s not nearly as effective working in space as a linebacker. There’s no reason why he shouldn’t have his hand in the dirt at all times, and the staff finally realized this by permanently switching him to defensive end this offseason. nike nfl jersey cheap

“It frees him up to play more first- or second-down nickel and be available in that way and be fresher during the course of the game,” defensive line coach Bryant Young said. “Not that he couldn’t handle it, because I thought he did a good job of handling the [strong side] and playing defensive end. cheap nfl jerseys nike Just having him available to play more reps at defensive end will be good for us.”

The moral of the story is simple: Play a top-10 pick and elite talent at his natural position to maximize effectiveness.

Tavon Austin, Dallas Cowboys

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No one has quite figured out how to use Tavon Austin despite the continued implementation of spread principles at the professional level. The Dallas Cowboys just might have found a way to finally utilize his skill set by moving him to running back. cheap nfl custom jerseys

Austin has been viewed as a wide receiver for the bulk of his career. However, he excelled at West Virginia as a multipurpose weapon before the then-St. Louis Rams used the eighth overall pick to select the 5’8″, 179-pound speedster.

Technically, the Cowboys’ coaching  nike nfl jerseys cheap staff now refers to Austin as a “web back,” which is a glorified third-down role.

“At the end of the day, I’m a playmaker,” Austin said, per the Dallas Morning News’ Brandon George. “That’s how I describe myself. I don’t really care where I’m at on the field. I just want the ball and a little bit of space and let me create, and I’m going from there.”

The ability to create is what’s important. nfl jerseys cheap nike Not asking him to be a refined route-runner or reliable target is a major step in the right direction. As a member of the running back stable, Austin can be handed the ball or targeted out of the backfield. His creativity in space is where he excels.

“He’s a steal,” quarterback Dak Prescott said of the Dallas trade to acquire Austin from the Rams, per ESPN.com’s Todd Archer.

Anfernee Simons Remains Biggest Enigma of 2018 Draft Class

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LAS VEGAS — Anfernee Simons isn’t the type of player that a team like the Portland Trail Blazers typically drafts. Solid playoff teams without much flexibility to add veterans often look for seasoned college players who will be able to contribute right away.cheap nfl custom jerseys

Blazers president Neil Olshey bucked trends on June 21 and put a laser on Simons, placing a bet that his long-term upside will justify the lack of present-day production for a team fighting to stay afloat in a brutal Western Conference free-for-all.

Heading into the draft, Simons was a virtual unknown, as he skipped college to spend a year training at Florida’s IMG Academy. He’s a talented but physically slight prospect who is two years away from being two years away. Simons could be the next Giannis Antetokounmpo, or he could be the next Bruno Caboclo. nfl jerseys cheap nike

The Blazers certainly weren’t expecting him to play much next season when they selected him with the No. 24 overall pick.

“We were looking for the guy with the highest ceiling we could possibly find,” Olshey said on draft night. “He’s really gifted. We felt like he was the most talented guy on the board. He’s got a really bright future, he works, he can dribble, he can pass, he can shoot, he’s a high-level athlete, we know he’s going to work. His skill set translates. When the physical growth catches up to his natural God-given ability, he’s going to be a really good player.”nfl nike jerseys cheap

Any summer-league production should be taken with an entire block of salt, but the early returns on Simons are promising. Although he came off the bench in his Las Vegas Summer League debut against the Utah Jazz on Saturday, he finished with 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting. He followed that up the next day with a 12-point performance in a win over the Atlanta Hawks. Simons struggled in his first summer-league start against the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday, scoring only eight points on 4-of-13 shooting.

“These players are a lot faster,” Simons said after his first game in Vegas. “They know how to finish better. You’ve got to be in the right position at all times. It’s much easier now because there’s a lot more spacing. I was able to get off ball screens and into open spaces and hit those open jumpers and floaters and stuff.”nike nfl jersey cheap

Summer league often serves as a rude awakening to rookies who had success in college. For Simons, that gap is even steeper. A top-10 recruit in his class, Simons initially committed to Louisville before decommitting in the wake of last fall’s FBI investigation into NCAA corruption, which implicated the school and led to the ouster of head coach Rick Pitino.

Simons instead opted to train at IMG, a well-known athletics-focused prep school. He was essentially a fifth-year senior, playing in AAU tournaments against younger competition. He wowed scouts with his athleticism and shooting ability, but his thin frame raised concerns that he wouldn’t be able to handle the physicality of the NBA. Add to that the obvious question marks about the level of competition he faced, and he entered the draft as more of a project than a sure thing. Most major draft analysts projected him as a late first- or early-to-mid-second-round pick.cheap nfl jerseys nike

DeAndre Jordan to the Dallas Mavericks 2.0

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What’s the ideal type of big man to pair with Dirk Nowitzki?

Defensively, you need a strong rebounder who nfl nike jersey cheap can prevent second-chance opportunities while holding down the fort as an interior anchor. Especially as the German 7-footer moves deeper into the twilight of his career, he should be minimizing the amount of banging done in the painted area, instead preserving his energy for spot-up opportunities on the scoring end.

Offensively, the Dallas Mavericks should be looking to pair him with a dominant roll man who can burst into the open space created by Nowitzki’s perimeter-dwelling gravitational pull. More shooting would be great, but that’s not as important as keeping a defense honest with rim-running.

Sound like anyone in particular? cheap nike nfl jersey

If your answer was peak Tyson Chandler, that’s valid. After all, the Mavericks last won a title when those two bigs were working in harmony during the 2010-11 season. But DeAndre Jordan is also a legitimate response, considering his ability to maintain his primary skills while gearing up for his age-30 season. cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

Now officially joining Dallas, Jordan is ready to catch lobs from Dennis Smith Jr. and Luka Doncic when he’s not exerting himself defensively. He’s a perfect fit, even in a slightly declined state.

Jordan allowing opponents to shoot 63.9 percent at the rim isn’t exactly ideal, but his willingness to contest myriad opportunities is valuable. Despite that porosity around the basket, he still posted a positive score in cheap nfl nike jersey  defensive real plus/minus and could bounce back in a system that doesn’t attempt to funnel everything in his direction.

As a roll man, he’s even better. Though he couldn’t replicate 2016-17’s 99th percentile finish for points per rolling possession (breaking news: Losing Chris Paul’s set-up feeds is a big deal), he still sat in the 84th percentile. Couple that with extreme volume, cheap nfl jerseys china nike and it’s no wonder he remains a valuable offensive presence despite not having any shooting range.

A New Kentucky Pairing for the New Orleans Pelicans

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The entire list of players last season who took at least 300 shots from within three feet, converted at no worse than a 70 percent clip and created at least 40 percent of their shots from that range?

LaMarcus Aldridge cheap nfl jerseys nike
Giannis Antetokounmpo
LeBron James
Julius Randle
Ben Simmons

Even though Randle is still developing moves while driving to his right and doesn’t yet have three-point range—or much jump-shooting range at all, for that matter—his ability to take bigger players off the bounce and convert with either finesse or overpowering physicality around the basket allowed for major strides. He’s a legitimate asset on the offensive end, and the combination of quick feet and strength makes him a defensive asset when nfl jerseys nike cheap  paired with the right big. nike nfl jerseys for cheap

Anthony Davis counts now that Randle is replacing DeMarcus Cousins and Rajon Rondo as the leading Kentucky cohort for the unibrowed ex-Wildcat. His rangy defense makes life easier for his running mates, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s now comfortable serving as a primary interior stopper. new nike nfl jerseys cheap

Plus, Randle should immediately be comfortable as a change-of-pace player, as William Guillory detailed for NOLA.com:

“The Pelicans already had one of the fastest paces in the NBA with Cousins in the lineup, but it moved into warp speed after he went down, and Mirotic’s ability to defend multiple positions and shoot from the perimeter allowed him to fit in seamlessly with Davis.

“But adding Randle to the mix will provide some of the paint presence New Orleans lost with Cousins’ departure and a big man that’s capable of grabbing defensive boards and running the floor to create opportunities in transition.”buy nike nfl jerseys cheap

The Lakers were actually slower when Randle played, per PBPStats.com, but that doesn’t mean this power forward is incapable of assuming Cousins’ vacated role. You didn’t have to watch many Los Angeles games to see him darting down the court and looking to set up his teammates in the fast-break game. cheap nfl nike jerseys china

Kendall Fuller, Kansas City Chiefs

The reason Kendall Fuller isn’t higher on this list is because he does most of his work from the slot. While that limits his utility to a degree, what he does with the position made him NFL1000’s top-ranked slot cornerback in 2017.kids nfl jerseys

In just his second season, Fuller allowed an opponent passer rating of 56.7, according to Sam Monson of Pro Football Focus, and he averaged fewer than 10 yards per reception, including yards after the catch. That’s hard to do when you’re dealing with slot receivers who are practiced at running two-way routes and other option concepts designed to work against cornerback movement.

Slot corners also have to cover outside receivers when they move inside, which is a different physical challenge. Imagine going from Doug Baldwin to Jimmy Graham in coverage from one play to the next, and you’ll have an idea of what that looks like.

Fuller is able to succeed because he’s well-versed in the fundamentals.nfl kids jerseys

He understands how to use his hands to landmark receivers and keep them from speeding away. He keeps his eyes on the center of the man he’s covering, making fakes harder for receivers to pull off. And he’s quick enough to catch up to a receiver who has gotten away from him as well as to jump the route for a deflection or an interception. He had 10 passes defensed and four picks in 2017 after having just two pass breakups and no picks in his rookie campaign.nfl jerseys for kids

Traded to the Chiefs in January (deal official in March) as part of  cheap kids nfl jerseys the swap that sent quarterback Alex Smith to Washington, Fuller should continue to be one of the best interior pass defenders in the league, and he does have the attributes to eventually move outside if the Chiefs choose to go that way.

Every NFL Team’s 2018 Breakout Player Candidate

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Someone always emerges.

Every year, every team has at least one breakout player. Usually several. And 2018 will be no different, because dozens of high-potential 20-something recent early-round draft picks have yet to make their marks.

Not all of them will pan out, but some will take that next step in 2018.

NFL offseason programs have pretty much wrapped up, and training camps loom on the other side of a six-week nap. That gives us a chance to step back and look at one player on each team who could explode in 2018.

Dealing only with players entering their second, third or (only in New England’s case) fourth season, and only players who have yet to make the Pro Bowl at their current positions, here’s a breakdown of 32 potential breakout stars.replica nfl jerseys wholesale

The Arizona Cardinals will be counting on 2017 first-round pick Haason Reddick to put together a strong second season in 2018, but last year’s second-rounder is actually riding a more promising trajectory.

Speed demon safety Budda Baker was already delivering as a top-end special-teamer before he started playing a major role on defense during the second half of his rookie campaign, and he came through as a regular with 45 solo tackles and a pair of forced fumbles in seven November/December starts. replica nfl jerseys china

The Cardinals then released Tyrann Mathieu in March, indicating that Baker would likely have a chance to replace Mathieu as the team’s top cover man in the slot.

Watch for the instinctive, versatile 22-year-old to emerge as one of the game’s shiniest young defensive players in 2018.

So many young Atlanta Falcons players have already broken out—we’re looking at you, Deion Jones, Keanu Neal, Vic Beasley and Grady Jarrett—that the obvious candidate for 2018 nfl replica jerseys wholesale  is top 2017 draft pick Takkarist McKinley. replica nfl jersey

The big-motor defensive end didn’t play enough to shine consistently as a rookie (he was on the field for just 38.2 percent of the team’s defensive snaps), but he recorded five of his six sacks in his last nine regular-season games, then he added two mor ein the playoffs. He should receive more opportunities now that veteran pass-rusher Adrian Clayborn has left town. nike replica nfl jerseys

Injuries have gotten in McKinley’s way in each of the last two offseasons, but if the 22-year-old can stay healthy, he’s destined to become a force in 2018.