Football Update

Jack Pittman, Intern

Over the past few weeks the NFL has had some monumental news about player retirements and blockbuster trades. These trades have shaken the football world and changed the dynamics of some conferences and even created a super team in Cleveland.

Rob Gronkowski

The first and least surprising of these events is the retirement of Rob Gronkowski. The starting tight end for the New England Patriots played for 9 years but was very successful in this time. He is the only tight end in NFL history to have had four seasons of 1000+ receiving yards and has the most receiving yards in the playoffs of any tight end. Gronkowski’s retirement had been speculated for the past view seasons, following a successful foray into the WWE and an up and coming career as an actor. It was catalyzed by a long going battle with injuries throughout his career. He was quoted as saying, “You take hits to the thigh. You take hits to the head. Abusing your body isn’t what your brain wants. When your body is abused, it can bring down your mood. You gotta be able to deal with that. I just took 50 collisions, and the next day everyone wants you to be up. They want practice to be full speed. The next week, they want the game to be full speed, but they don’t understand what players are going through with their bodies or their minds.” Gronkowski was ready to be finished with the wear and tear that comes with a NFL career and was ready to move on to new things.

Antonio Brown

The first groundbreaking trade this offseason was the trading of Antonio Brown from the Steelers to the Raiders. This trade was also highly predicted as the Steelers’ locker room had devolved into too many drama queens and big egos. It started with a conflict with the quarterback and missed practices from Brown. This along with the inability to resign star running back Le’veon Bell, caused him to leave in free agency. Wanting to avoid this fate with Antonio Brown and already having a similar quality player on the roster, Juju Smith-Schuster, the Steelers traded Brown to the Oakland Raiders for a third round pick and a fifth-round pick. In the end, this trade was just the Steelers attempting to get something in return for a player that would likely leave for nothing and got the Raiders a star wide receiver.

Odell Beckham

The second and much more influential of the trades this offseason in the trading of Odell Beckham, one of the best wide receivers in the league right now. Odell Beckham was traded from the New York Giants to the Cleveland Browns for the 17th pick, the 93rd pick, and Jabrill Peppers. This is a shocking trade as the Beckham is the one bright spot on a dismal Giants team. This trade fills a position of need for the Giants and their general manager said it was “an offer they couldn’t refuse.” For the Browns, this trade pairs longtime best friends Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham.

Odell Beckham

This two star receivers will be catching passes from young quarterback Baker Mayfield. This offensive pairing along with star tight end, David Njoku, and a defense anchored by pass rushers, Myles Garrett and Olivier Vernon, will make the Browns the favorite to win their division dethroning the Ravens. At the end of the day, this trade makes the Browns a potential super team with super bowl capable talent.