Miami Dolphins Making Moves on Free Agency Day One

Danell Ellerbe has flown the Ravens coup.

Danell Ellerbe has flown the Ravens coup.

If  you thought it was going to be difficult for the Ravens to stay among the league’s elite, things just got worse. One day after trading away Anquan Boldin, they lose the free agent they most wanted to keep in linebacker Danell Ellerbe.  He just signed with the Miami Dolphins. Today he received a 5 year $35 million deal that takes him down to sunny Florida. They should have franchised him…now his 89 tackles and 4 1/2 sacks will be in the AFC East.

Wallace is on his way to South Beach.

Wallace is on his way to South Beach.

Now add to that the Dolphins also signed WR Mike Wallace to a 5 year $60 million deal to leave the Steelers. Right now his agent is with the Dolphins brass to solidify the deal. They gave Ryan Tannenhill a deep threat that should open a few things up for Davone Bess and other underneath receivers. However they signed him for a guaranteed $30 million. Will these moves pan out?? Will the Dolphins make a move in the AFC East?? Don’t forget they are probably going to lose Reggie Bush.

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Taylor Blitz Times new logo!!

Taylor Blitz Times new logo!!

Percy Harvin Traded To The Seahawks

Percy Harvin is going to be a viable threat out of the backfield as well as in the slot.

Percy Harvin is going to be a viable threat out of the backfield as well as in the slot.

Percy Harvin is packing his bags for the Pacific Northwest. He is going to a legitimate Super Bowl contender at the expense of 2 1st round selections. One this year and another next year. Let’s face it he only had a salary of $915,000 last year and provides an explosive element to the Seahawks on offense as well as special teams.

If there is a weakness on the Seahawks, they didn’t have enough play makers around Russell Wilson. The only way to free up Sidney Rice is to get a complete receiver on the other side. Harvin isn’t that guy. He’s the guy that will attack from the slot formation when you split your attention between Marshawn Lynch, Sidney Rice, and the later to be named receiver they should get in the draft or free agency. Understand the dynamic that Harvin isn’t the end all be all.

He’s going to be that wildcard in their offense that you won’t be able to account for. Couple that with Russell Wilson’s running ability and Harvin just needs to stay alive on those plays. Everyone knows he is always one missed tackle from taking it the distance. If you read our Seahawks preview https://taylorblitztimes.com/2013/03/08/2013-seattle-seahawks-preview-ready-to-make-a-move/ you’d know the relative ages of these players. This team is in for a Super Bowl run and they would still have another year before free agency can nick at this team. So giving up 2 first rounders for a team that is loaded at every position but receiver, this was a good trade. If they take the field for Super Bowl XLVIII, it will be looked upon as a great trade.

 

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This is a move in the right direction. Terrelle Pryor and Darren McFadden should form an effective “Pistol Formation” offense. It simplifies downfield reads by holding the linebackers in place with the design fakes. Lets face fact, we’ve seen the best of Palmer’s career at this point. There is no upside to continue with him. Their best bet is to let Pryor and a new spirit push the Raiders into the future. Pryor may not be RGIII, Colin Kaepernick, or Russell Wilson, but at his height and size teams have to think twice about blitzing DBs at him like Ben Roethlisberger. That alone would give Pryor an advantage over a stationary Palmer. Give the kid the job and move into the 21st century. It’s working all around the NFL.

The Soul Of The Game – Fred Williamson

The helmet Fred "The Hammer" Williamson wore with the Kansas City Chiefs.

The helmet Fred “The Hammer” Williamson wore with the Kansas City Chiefs.

When you think of the wild west scoring of the AFL, you think of long bombs, high scores, quarterbacks going for broke. Well, someone had to be deployed to stop those receivers and that’s where Fred Williamson comes in.  He was the “original” AFL shut down corner with the Oakland Raiders when he arrived in 1961.

There just isn’t a lot of footage on Fred Williamson’s early days. NFL Films didn’t acquire a lot of the old footage until after the merger agreement of 1966 so they exclusively used Kansas City Chiefs footage.

However he was an AFL All Star in 1961, ’62, and ’63 and was chosen 1st team All Pro in 1962 and 1963. Consider the fact he achieved All Star status with 5 int. with 58 yards in returns for a 2-12 Raider team. His best season was in 1962 which was his first as an All Pro, he intercepted 8 passes returning them for 151 yards and a touchdown. This he achieved on a 1-13 Raiders team that had two coaches and preceded Al Davis. In an 8 team league where the Raiders finished last on offense and second to last on defense, he was 1st team All Pro and the only player on the team to achieve any honors.

An autographed pic of Fred Williamson with Al Davis. He was the first guy to wear white shoes, not Joe Namath. Joe came into the AFL in 1965 when Williams stopped playing for the Raiders in 1964.

An autographed pic of Fred Williamson with Al Davis. He was the first guy to wear white shoes, not Joe Namath. Joe came into the AFL in 1965 when Williams stopped playing for the Raiders in 1964.

Those are high numbers for a cornerback who played for a team that was always behind and teams were running the clock out on them.

After intercepting 25 passes for the Raiders for 4 years, Williamson became a Chief and finally played for a winner. He teamed with all time AFL interception leader S Johnny Robinson to form arguably the best secondary in AFL history.

For all the talk of the “point a minute” reputation of the AFL, the 1966 Chiefs were dominant on defense. In a 14 game season teams threw away from “The Hammer’s” side of the field. So much so that both safeties Robinson and Bobby Hunt intercepted 10 passes each and the team grabbed 33 as a unit.

In the AFL Championship Game, the two time defending champion Buffalo Bills were eyeing a three-peat when Williamson nearly beheaded receiver Glenn Bass. It took the fight out of the Bills much like the Mike Stratton hit on Keith Lincoln in the 1964 championship, knocked the fight out of the Chargers giving Buffalo the momentum and emotional advantage.

Fred’s hit should have been remembered in the same light…

Fred “The Hammer” Williamson was the AFL’s version of the shutdown corner if there was one. Had the Kansas City Chiefs won Super Bowl I his legend would be greater and might have his inclusion in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

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Taylor Blitz Times new logo!!

Taylor Blitz Times new logo!!

Super Bowl XLVII will be Ray Lewis’ swan song. Here is his first sack against Jim Harbaugh who is now San Francisco’s coach. More irony is in the ensuing two years they would be teammates in Baltimore. How is that for irony??

They Call It Pro Football - Official Blog of NFL Films

Super Bowl XLVII will be the final game of Ray Lewis’s storied career.  To win it, he’ll have to go through Jim Harbaugh, and if he does, it won’t be the first time he’s taken down his head coach’s younger brother.

In 1996, when the Niner-coaching Harbaugh was the Colts-signal calling Harbaugh, he became the first NFL quarterback that Ray Lewis ever sacked.  Here’s a look back at that meeting, the first in a bookend set that will be completed this weekend in New Orleans.  Tune in Sunday to see whether Ray or Jim will laugh last.

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It doesn’t surprise me that these things are coming out so late. So much goes into not wanting to sound like a sore loser once you lose a big game. After years of reflection and conversation with former teammates, there are going to be some feelings that will boil to the surface. Take Tim Brown’s plight to get into the Hall of Fame, many are using his not playing for an NFL champion as the reason he’s being excluded. Every time Super Bowl XXXVII is reflected upon, it would get under your skin too. I can understand being upset with Callahan overcoaching but I don’t think he sabotaged the Raiders purposely. That I would definitely find offensive. That would definitely open pandora’s box.