"I have a hard time believing the two sides will come to an agreement on an extension, unless it is heavily incentive-based and includes team options."
-Chris Pokorny, Dawgs By Nature
The Cleveland Browns are trying to work out a contract extension with quarterback Brian Hoyer, who is entering the final year of his deal. Hoyer took over as the starting quarterback early last season, but injuries derailed what was looking to be a promising year. Now, Hoyer has to contend with rookie Johnny Manziel, meaning a potential extension would likely include tons of incentive- and performance-based escalators, as noted by Chris Pokorny of Dawgs By Nature.
On top of that, Hoyer's agent doesn't seem to think a deal getting done now is feasible. It certainly seems like an extension would benefit the Browns the most, and would give Hoyer the least flexibility when it comes to his competition with Manziel. Hoyer's agent says Nov. 1 is the earliest date the two sides could agree on a contract, as reported by Pro Football Talk. That would give Hoyer sufficient time to prove he can start.
"There was questionable depth along the offensive line and now it's even a little thinner."
-Brandon Lee Gowton, Bleeding Green Nation
Philadelphia Eagles right tackle Lane Johnson has been suspended by the NFL for four games. Johnson reportedly tested positive for PEDs. As a rookie last season, Johnson played well and started all 16 games. He struggled at times in pass protection, but was a mauling run blocker who was entrenched as the starter going forward.
The folks at Bleeding Green Nation note that this definitely hurts the Eagles, a team that wasn't exactly strongest or deep along the offensive line. Johnson is now in line to miss games against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Indianapolis Colts, Washington football team and San Francisco 49ers.
"He's an athlete. He's a freak. We just have to put him in the right situations and he's going to be hell."
-Pat Sims, Oakland Raiders
Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Pat Sims counts himself among Khalil Mack's fans. Mack was Oakland's first-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft and he's expected to be an impact player in his rookie season. Mack is a prolific pass rusher and is as athletic as they come. He was widely regarded as the second-best player in the draft behind Jadeveon Clowney, who went first overall to the Houston Texans.
Sims sure sounds excited to play alongside the rookie, according to quotes from the team's website. Sims said that Mack can play "almost any position in the front seven," which is true. It's still unclear where Mack will actually end up playing, but fans can expect him to see the field early and often in his rookie campaign.
"[Roddy White and Julio Jones] are Pro Bowl caliber receivers, both of them are All-Pro caliber receivers."
Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals
Recently, Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones contended that he and Roddy White comprise the best wide receiver tandem in the NFL. It's a claim that's only difficult to argue due to a rough 2013 in which the pairing dealt with multiple injuries and missed a good deal of time, but if we go by the numbers from 2012, it is nearly indisputable.
Cornerback Patrick Peterson of the Arizona Cardinals, who knows a thing or two about defending wide receivers, thinks Jones is correct in his statement, according to D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Peterson said that the claim is "pretty accurate," and that the two are "All-Pro caliber receivers." Peterson said that Jones and White make Matt Ryan's job "a little easier." Jones and White are both expected to be 100 percent healthy heading into the regular season.