Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

02 Jun 2006, 12:45pm by P. Ryan Wilson

How Multiple Sets Make Defenses Fret

Pat Kirwan writes a very informative article on the cat-and-mouse game-within-the-game between offensive and defensive coordinators. If you have any questions about personnel groupings, it's probably covered here. Kirwan also looks at two specific examples: Pittsburgh and Seattle, which immediately raises a question: How can we get our hands on this data? The game charting project tracked personnel groupings, but Kirwan seems to have information on what specific 11 players were on the field on every play, which is impossible to get off the TV tapes.

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28 comments, Last at 06 Jun 2006, 6:43am by Playit

02 Jun 2006, 10:18am by P. Ryan Wilson

Kicker Now Has a Dallas Place

Certainly Mike Vanderjagt improves the Cowboy's kicking game, but I thought his quote from the article was kinda funny: "If you look at it, I guess I'm the reason why we expect [to be better] if nothing else changed..." Take that T.O. Vanderjagt is also quoted as saying, "I would love for somebody to write a story with facts. If you look at the numbers, I actually have a higher percentage outside than inside ... It's a major myth." According to the article, Vanderjagt converts kicks at a rate of 87.3 percent outdoors and 87.5 indoors. That's close enough for government work.

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50 comments, Last at 05 Jun 2006, 1:17pm by Pat

31 May 2006, 05:23pm by Michael David Smith

Arbitrator Rules for McNair

No surprise, an arbitrator has ruled that as long as Steve McNair is under contract to the Titans, the Titans have to let him work out at their facility. Which means he won't be under contract to the Titans much longer.

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30 comments, Last at 09 Jun 2006, 6:48pm by Pools

31 May 2006, 01:18pm by P. Ryan Wilson

A Cut Below

Unlike years past, there will only be a handful of June 1st cuts and Charles Robinson runs down the short list. At the bottom of the page however, he empties out his notebook with these tidbits:

- Mike Martz isn't enamored with former first-rounders Charles Rogers and Mike Williams, and neither will be in the top-three rotation at wideout when training camp begins;

- Martz loves backup QB Dan Orlovsky, and he could be a future No. 1;

- One NFC scout says Brady Quinn is reminiscent of Kyle Orton heading into his senior season.

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37 comments, Last at 04 Jun 2006, 12:08pm by jebmak

30 May 2006, 11:06pm by P. Ryan Wilson

Top 50 Players: Fleeting Moments of Glory

Here's what Pete Prisco says about the 8th best player on his list, Brian Urlacher: "After years of battling the overrated label, he finally played as well as advertised in 2005. He was the leader of that good Bears defense." I think I know why Urlacher battles the overrated label. Here's Prisco last summer: "Overrated: Brian Urlacher ... he's a good player, but not a great one. It's time for him to live up to his reputation." Thanks Pete. To his credit, Prisco does pimp Seattle's Walter Jones, another FO favorite.

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68 comments, Last at 09 Jun 2006, 5:24pm by Brian

30 May 2006, 04:25pm by P. Ryan Wilson

Out on a Limb with Branch

Michael Felger has a question about WR Deion Branch, whose rookie deal is up at the end of the 2006 season: "There's no doubt Branch wants to be paid like a true No. 1 receiver. But does he qualify?" Well, he finished 12th in DPAR and 13th in DVOA last season ahead of guys named Harrison, Holt and R. Moss. If that's not good enough, I don't know what is. The fact that David Givens signed a deal with the Titans averaging $4.8 million a season with $8 million in bonuses means that Branch will be looking for at least that much (rumors have it at around $12 million in bonuses/guarantees).

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24 comments, Last at 01 Jun 2006, 4:35pm by DWS

30 May 2006, 02:44pm by P. Ryan Wilson

Rising from the Ashes

Unlike Peter King, Don Banks thinks the Colts will win it all in 2006, although I don't get the Red Sox and Steelers comparisons.

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26 comments, Last at 02 Jun 2006, 12:10pm by DWS

29 May 2006, 11:11pm by Aaron Schatz

MMQB: Cowboys Champs in '07

Attention, Peter King. This is the Dallas offensive line speaking. Please put the crack pipe down.

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136 comments, Last at 09 Jun 2006, 10:10pm by centrifuge

28 May 2006, 07:56pm by Michael David Smith

Ricky Williams Heading to Canada

Is this a good move for Ricky? Is it a good move for the Dolphins? Is it a good move for the CFL?

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32 comments, Last at 30 May 2006, 11:47pm by nocal

28 May 2006, 05:36am by Michael David Smith

Ironhead Heyward Dies at 39

My earliest memory of Craig "Ironhead" Heyward was from his sophomore season at the University of Pittsburgh, when I watched him run over linebackers whom he outweighed by 40 or so pounds. He spent 11 seasons in the NFL with New Orleans, Chicago, Atlanta, St. Louis and Indianapolis, including one Pro Bowl season with the Falcons. Heyward died Saturday after a long battle with brain cancer.

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16 comments, Last at 30 May 2006, 11:10pm by Melissa