Injuries are an inevitable part of the NFL. Torn ligaments and fractured bones don’t discriminate against any team, position or pay grade. Thankfully, with proper medical attention and support, players that get hurt can generally return to their previous form — if not even better.
Several notable athletes went down during the 2018 season and will be using 2019 to stage their comebacks. According to the experts at NFL Network, the top players to watch this season are Earl Thomas, Cooper Kupp and two big names on the Atlanta Falcons’ defense.
Sorry to burst your bubble, Patriots haters – a guy who knows a thing or two about Super Bowls (and great quarterbacks) says there’s no use betting against them.
Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews, who has spent his entire career alongside Aaron Rodgers and won a Super Bowl with him in 2011, is picking New England to win Super Bowl LIII.
“The amount of experience they’ve had and how they’ve been able to stay on top is truly remarkable,” he told AOL.com. “Even in the losses they’ve had in the Super Bowl, they haven’t been blowouts.”
As fans of the New Orleans Saints know all too well, one flag – or a flag not thrown – can completely alter the course of a season.
By now everyone has seen or heard about the blown call during the NFC championship game between those Saints and the Super Bowl-bound Los Angeles Rams. The NFL has admitted that the refs made a mistake and subsequently fined Rams defender Nickell Robey-Coleman for targeting on the play.
However, no amount of apologizing can halt what has already begun – a demand for the NFL to change the rules surrounding pass interference. And unfortunately for the league, that wasn’t the only questionable rule or play that the masses took notice of during championship weekend.
During the AFC championship game, Kansas City Chiefs defensive end Chris Jones was penalized for roughing the passer after grazing the face mask of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. The Patriots were able to continue the drive and score a touchdown.
The call looked all too familiar to Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has yet to address the pass interference no-call seen around the world – and players, both active and retired, are taking notice.
Late in the fourth quarter of the NFC Championship game between the Los Angeles Rams and New Orleans Saints, Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman hit Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis in the helmet without looking for the ball and prior to the ball reaching Lewis. It was a blatant rule violation, but no flag was ever thrown.
Had the penalty been called, the Saints could have continued the drive and scored a touchdown, or let the clock run down further. Instead, they were forced to settle for a fast field goal. The Rams tied the game and went on to win in overtime, which many around New Orleans don’t believe would have happenedhad a flag been thrown against Robey-Coleman.
Multiple members of the Saints, including tight end Ben Watson, team owner Gayle Benson and wide receiver Michael Thomas have commented on the fiasco, with Thomas even calling for a do-over of the game.
NFL legend Terrell Owens was similarly bothered by the blatant missed penalty.
The Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots are looking forward to Super Bowl LIII on February 3 – but Las Vegas is already looking towards 2020.
Way-too-early Super Bowl LIV odds show that this season’s final four teams may also be the last ones standing come next postseason, and scorned Kansas City Chiefs and New Orleans Saints fans should be pleased with their chances.
Of course, anything could happen between now and next February. The NFL draft is coming up in April, and there’s always the possibility of some star players getting injured, traded or choosing to retire over the long offseason (we’re watching you, Gronk).
The New England Patriots – especially quarterback Tom Brady – seemed to relish the team’s recent role as underdogs.
“I know everybody thinks we suck,” the 41-year-old Brady said after the Patriots dominated the Los Angeles Chargers to advance to Sunday’s AFC Championship game in Kansas City, another matchup the team wasn’t favored to win.
But they did win. As did the Los Angeles Rams, who were the underdog in the NFC despite remaining undefeated for the first eight weeks of the regular season.
So sets up Super Bowl LIII – which happens to be a rematch of Super Bowl XXXVI, when a then-24-year-old Tom Brady won his first ring and started a dynasty.
Death, taxes and the New England Patriots making it to the AFC Championship Game.
After the AFC and NFC divisional round games on Saturday and Sunday, only four teams remain in the NFL playoffs – and they’re exactly the teams you’d expect.
The No. 1 and No. 2 seeds from each conference reigned supreme over the weekend, setting up two matchups for the ages this upcoming weekend: the Patriots, last season’s runner-up, will travel to take on the Kansas City Chiefs, while the New Orleans Saints will host the Los Angeles Rams.
According to Vegas Insider, Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta will feature the top seeds from each conference. The Rams, once the league’s last-remaining undefeated team, are suddenly at the bottom of the pack looking up, and the Patriots are relishing their new role of “underdog.”
The Los Angeles Rams of the NFL faced a lot of pressure this season. It was the team’s first year back in California after calling St. Louis home for 20 years — and a major relocation and rebrand is bound to come with some stress.
Despite the challenges of the Rams’ first season in Los Angeles, running back Todd Gurley is excited for the future.
Gurley, a young star on the team, sat down to talk with AOL.com to explain how he was able to combat the challenges of the big move, as well as other aspects of his life.