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NFL News: November 2, 2018

It’s been a busy time for NFL News. Take a look at some of the recent news and notes:

One Of The Most Active Trade Deadlines Ever?

Unlike the MLB and NBA, the trade deadline in the NFL is usually rather quiet.  Teams are generally cautious about giving up valuable draft picks, and the deadline occurs earlier in the season when some teams are still trying to decide whether they are contenders or not.  That is all the more reason that this trade deadline was a blast to observe. There were several deals involving high-quality players and potential postseason teams. Here is a rundown of some of the trades:

  • Texans acquired wide receiver Demaryius Thomas and a 2019 7th-round pick from the Broncos in exchange for a 2019 4th-round pick and a 2019 7th-round pick.
    • With the season-ending injury to wide receiver Will Fuller, the Texans knew they needed to get more help for quarterback Deshaun Watson.  They were able to get that help in a trade with the Denver Broncos, bringing in former Pro-Bowler Demaryius Thomas. While Thomas is not the player he used to be and is not an exact replacement of the speedy Fuller, he will still give the Texans another threat as they look to make a playoff push.
  • Eagles acquire wide receiver Golden Tate from the Lions for a 2019 3rd-round pick.
    • Another wide receiver acquired at the deadline was the acquisition of Golden Tate by the Philadelphia Eagles.  Tate is a free agent at the end of the season, but will definitely be a plus for Carson Wentz and the passing attack of the Eagles alongside standout Alshon Jeffery.  It was somewhat surprising to see the Detroit Lions, who are also very much in the mix in the NFC North, trade the talented wide receiver, but a 3rd-round pick may have been too much to pass up for a player they knew they would likely lose at the end of the season.
  • Ravens acquire running back Ty Montgomery from the Packers for a 2020 7th-round pick.
    • The Baltimore Ravens definitely got a steal at the deadline by trading for Montgomery, who was basically in the doghouse in Green Bay. After fumbling a return, one in which he was told to just take a knee, Montgomery had grown discontented with his role in Green Bay and may have started to be a cancer in the locker room. To avoid that, the Packers shipped him off to Baltimore, who will look to use him to compliment running back Alex Collins.
  • Redskins acquire safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix from the Packers for a 2019 4th-round pick.
    • Ty Montgomery wasn’t the only player that Green Bay parted with at the trade deadline.  They also traded away impending free agent Ha Ha Clinton-Dix to the Washington Redskins. For the Redskins, he gives them another weapon on defense, where they already rank 9th in pass defense. It will also be interesting to see what happens after the season as he could be a prime candidate for the franchise tag.
  • Rams acquire LB Dante Fowler from the Jaguars for a 2019 3rd-round pick and a 2020 5th-round pick.
    • Sometimes the rich get richer.  The Rams, who many look at as the best team in the NFL solidified an already tough pass rush with the acquisition of Fowler.  He will likely play on the outside and could be a wrecking ball alongside the likes of Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh. Fowler will be a free agent after the season, but for the Rams, they are hoping he helps bring a Super Bowl victory this year.

Seahawks Drop Marshall

Another player who could be moving teams is wide receiver Brandon Marshall.  The Seattle Seahawks released the veteran wide out on Tuesday. With Seattle this season, Marshall had 11 catches, 136 yards, and one touchdown.  It will be interesting to see whether Marshall can latch on anywhere or whether this is the end of the road him.

Bears Lose Offensive Lineman For Foreseeable Future

Injuries are never good, but they tend to sting just a little more when they happen in garbage time.  Last Sunday, in a 24-10 win over the New York Jets, right guard Kyle Long injured his right ankle, needing help to be able to leave the field.  That injury looks like it is going to keep Long out for a while as Ian Rapoport is reporting that the three-time Pro-Bowler will likely miss 6-8 weeks.  After a surprising 4-3 start, the Bears currently sit in first place in the NFC North. The absence of Long will most definitely hurt the Bears offense, but they are hoping to be able to make do with second-round pick James Daniels until Long can return.

Nick Mullens Has Quite The Debut

Thursday Night Football was not exactly a star-studded affair, with the Oakland Raiders and San Francisco 49ers playing.  Despite, that, one player, even if for only one night, looked pretty spectacular. Undrafted Nick Mullens got the start for the banged up 49ers and to say it was a career night would be an understatement.  In his first start ever, Mullens went for 262 yards and 3 touchdowns (with a 151.9 passer rating) in a 34-3 blowout of the Oakland Raiders. For the Raiders, the first year of a 10 year, $100 million contract for coach Jon Gruden is looking rough.  After trading Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper, the Raiders are looking like they might be in line for a number one overall pick. Regardless, Thursday night allowed one unlikely quarterback to feel like a pro bowler, one team to double their number of wins and one team to continue to sink to new lows.

Turnover In Cleveland

At 2-5-1, Hue Jackson was sadly having the best season of his tenure as Cleveland Browns head coach.  Earlier this week, that tenure ended. Both Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley were fired after another disappointing outcome in a 33-18 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.  Over the course of three seasons, Jackson went a combined 3-36-1. In the interim, defensive coordinator Gregg Williams has taken over as head coach. For Jackson, an interview with The Plain Dealer on Thursday indicates that he thinks he could have turned around the Browns’ offense had he taken over play calling from Haley, but ultimately we will never know.  The firing means that this offseason, Cleveland will look for another coach hoping to tackle the challenge of turning the Browns organization into winners.

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