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Some reasons why the Browns could pass on RGIII- “Robert Griffin III is a special and unique talent. I’ve heard comparisons to quarterbacks like Steve Young and Cam Newton. Griffin III is not the next someone, he is the first Robert Griffin III. Moreover, football pundits think he is a perfect fit for the West Coast offensive system. This is what the Browns’ employ to a certain degree. Yet because Griffin III is so unique, the team that does select him will have to tailor their offense. The Browns believe in their system from the top down. Holmgren, Heckert and Shurmur come from similar backgrounds and have similar beliefs in how to run a football team. That trio is more inclined to fit players to their system and not vice versa. [Delco/Orange and Brown Report]
“I’m a sucker for a feelgood story. I mean, it’s my job to tell stories, so why wouldn’t I gravitate towards the tales that tell of people overcoming great odds to achieve success. This is one reason why I’m a fan of Cleveland’s Shelley Duncan.
If Duncan earned a spot on the Opening Day roster as the Tribe’s left fielder this spring, it would mean he found a way to shake off a label that was stamped on him long ago. Once a ballplayer is dubbed a utility man, or a good guy for the clubhouse and a fit for his specific role, it can be a tall task for them to convince the decision makers to roll the dice on them as an everyday option.” [Bastian/MLB.com]
Arguing for Flynn over Griffin- “The Arguments for Matt Flynn: Flynn costs zero draft picks. Aside from which of these gentlemen is actually the better player, the cost of draft picks is the most important factor here. Draft picks are the lifeblood of an NFL franchise. Used properly, they keep a team stocked with talent and relatively cheap. You can’t exist as a quality team without using draft picks well. To get Griffin, you’re going to have to give up a bucketload of them.
He’s not an unknown quantity. Flynn has spent four years in Green Bay learning from the same people who helped Aaron Rodgers become great. That’s invaluable. Tape of him exists throwing 132 passes in real, live NFL games. It’s much easier to evaluate that than it is to evaluate tape of RGIII in a college system against college defenses. You won’t have to wait on him. Some rookies might take a year or two or three to mature into a very good NFL quarterback. Flynn should be able to step in and play his best football right now.” [MJD/Shutdown Corner]
Rookie power rankings, Irving still on top- “My biggest concern was that defenses would attack his left hand, forcing him to put the ball on the floor and go right — similar to how defenses have begun to guard Jeremy Lin. But Irving is still very successful from the top of the key. According to data from Synergy Sports, Irving is posting a points per possession (PPP) of 1.333 in “top isolations,” among the top 2 percent of all NBA players. Most notably, defenses have not been able to stop Irving from his preferred move: He has landed in this top 2 percent while still going left 63.6 percent of the time. In fact, when Irving attacks the basket from the left side, he is posting the best PPP among all NBA players, scoring 1.467 points per possession” [Pruiti/Grantland]
Finally, a long video, but really good stuff on secondary ticket markets, social media strategies in sports. From the Sloan Sports Conference. [ESPN Video]