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The Super Bowl.
The biggest game of the year for football fans around the world will come down to the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49’ers.
The Chiefs, led by former NFL MVP, Patrick Mahomes, have a slingshot attack that is nearly impossible to defend against. On the other side of the ball, the 49’ers have a rock-solid defense that has been the hardest defense to score against all year. Overall, it’s a heavyweight matchup that will be a tough, hard-hitting, action-filled game that may go down as one of the greatest Super Bowls of all time.
Leading off, the 49ers are a versatile team led by ex-Patriots QB, Jimmy Garrapolo. Despite consistently doing his job all season, many people give Garroppolo hate as he rarely passes the ball. The San Francisco QB only threw the ball eight times in the Niners win against the Packers in the NFC Championship. However, I don’t understand the hate. The 49ers have been winning games all season with their rush-oriented offense, and that scheme has been working. Garroppolo fits his role perfectly and the 49’ers couldn’t have found a better player to fit the role of their QB than Jimmy Garrapolo.
The 49’ers also have the best defense in the league. The Niners defense has been on a tear all season, garnering 48 sacks throughout the season. Nobody has been able to stop the dynamic group of Nick Bosa, Arik Armstead, Soloman Thomas, Dee Ford, and DeForest Buckner. The five d-lineman have a train that has just kept on chugging all season, and they’ve yet to reach their final destination.
Meanwhile, on the other sideline stands Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes, only in his third season in the NFL has already become the best QB in the whole league. Ever since Mahomes took over the Chiefs, he has turned the franchise around in a drastic way.
People laughed at the Chiefs for trading up for Mahomes in 2017. How the tables have turned.
If one person can flip the 49ers defense by their heels, it’s Mahomes. Mahomes can scramble out of the pocket, throw the ball into double coverage and make it somehow land in the hands of the receiver, and a lot more. He’s got the best arm strength in the lead without a doubt, and if he shows up on Super Bowl Sunday, it will be very interesting to see how the 49ers can keep up.
With all of this being said, I have the 49ers winning. I know Mahomes is great and a generational talent that has the potential to win multiple Lombardi Trophies in his career, but Super Bowl 54 will not be on the list.
The 49ers defense is just too hard to play against. The Niners have a staggering 5 first rounders of their defense line and they’ve accumulated a whopping 9 sacks in two playoff games. As the old saying goes, “offense wins games, defense wins championships” and I think that saying will be in full effect come Super Bowl Sunday.
Erling Braut Haaland is nothing short of a miracle worker.
In a total of 54 minutes for Borussia Dortmund, the talented Norwegian forward as amassed an astonishing 5 goals. However, this isn’t just pure luck. Instead, it’s something we have never seen from a young forward in a long time.
Born in Leeds, Haaland comes from a very gifted family. His father, Alf-Inge, played professional ball for 22 years and enjoyed stints at clubs such as Leeds United and Manchester City.
Haaland’s tenure in England was short-lived and he moved to Norway at a very young age. From there, Haaland went on to sign with his hometown club, Bryne FK.
In his first season with Bryne, he played for their reserve side and scored 18 goals in 14 games. Showing his class at such a young age.
He then worked his way up and eventually signed with Norwegian giant, Molde FK.
One season with Molde went by, and Haaland became known as a reliable young striker, but this was a mere shadow of what he managed to become.
In his second season at Molde, Haaland scored four goals against an undefeated Brann side in twenty-two minutes. This is when Manchester United realized they talent Haaland posses, but they weren’t set on making a move just yet.
After an impressive run with Molde, Haaland joined RB Salzburg, a place where the legend of the 19-year-old began. After scoring a hat trick after a hat trick in league play and goal after goal in the Champions League, Haaland became the hottest wonder boy on the transfer market. However, with a 25 million dollar release clause instilled in his contract, it was up to Haaland to decide where he goes.
The kid who was only the second teenager in history to score a Champions League hattrick decided on joining the yellow and black in Borussia Dortmund.
After a short stint at Salzburg, that saw him become the only player in Champions League history to score over six goals in the first three group stage games, Haaland went off to Germany as confident as ever.
In Haaland’s first appearance for Dortmund, he was substituted in the 53rd minute. He then proceeds to score a hattrick only 23 minutes into his first appearance! The world was exploding over Erling Braut Haaland.
In the following game, Haaland managed to score two goals despite being subbed in the mid-second half. Haaland even scored a goal from a nearly impossible angle, and it became official that Haaland wasn’t your usual wonder boy.
Haaland possesses confidence in front of the net that is rare to see at any age. The Norwegian knows how to create space and attack a team with pace and with power. Explosive as can be, Haaland, standing at 6’4, has a physical advantage on nearly every player on the pitch and utilizes that to the best of his ability.
Another thing I often look for when analyzing young stars is their maturity. Haaland is very mature. He seems to go with the flow and is very low key about everything he does, another rare attribute to see in such a young player. Haaland has shown that he is confident, but he doesn't go overboard in any of his actions. He goes to the pitch, does his job, and then leaves.
Adding on, Haaland has a killer instinct in front of the net that hasn’t been seen in years. With the path he’s heading on, he can be the best player in the world.
I believe the next Ronaldo vs Messi is Haaland vs Mbappe.
Is Joe Burrow NFL ready?
Joe Burrow has what scouts love. Confidence, precision, the ability to take charge. However, there is still the question if he can translate his game to an NFL level, and in this article I will be analyzing the Heisman winner, seeing if he’s ready for the pros.
You cannot deny the accuracy Joe Burrow has, completing 78% of his passes this season while also dropping 60 touchdowns, a stat that led all of FBS.
Burrow puts his passes where he wants them and is able to throw into very tight spaces. He has a feel for the quarterback position that is incapable to teach. A lot of his success this season came from LSU turning their run-oriented offense into Burrow’s offense, which paid off. Burrow has a nice release of the ball and knows how to read a defense very well for a college quarterback. However, the Ohio native doesn’t possess NFL level arm strength, but his accuracy has seemed to overshadow that this season.
Burrow is comfortable at the line, and recognizes his mismatches and takes full advantage of them. For instance, Burrow has involved multiple wideouts into the game this season and made them potential first-rounders, players such as Thaddeus Moss, Justin Jefferson, and Ja'Marr Chase, have all evolved tremendously with Burrow as their quarterback.
Some of Burrow’s stats are inflated due to his offensive line. While watching him play this season, he had five to ten seconds to throw the ball, if not more. When he gets to the NFL (most likely Cincinnati), he is going to have a fraction of this time to find an open receiver, and it will definitely be a tough transition from going to college football’s best offensive to line to one of the NFL’s worst. Burrow has shown flashes where he can dazzle around defenders, but I haven’t seen enough to give him a true grade on his ability to throw under pressure, and this is about what I have seen, not what I haven’t.
Overall, Burrow’s accuracy is elite and he makes players around him much better. Despite his arm strength worries and is the offensive line, Burrow’s talent is still undeniable. He can throw a pass right on the money, and that's not something you can teach. I am going to give his passing rating a B+.
Joe Burrow has elite footwork. From his drop backs to ability to escape under pressure, Burrow has much better footwork than given credit for. Burrow is able to avoid sacks with ease (although he doesn’t get pressured much), and he’s also able to extend a play on the run. In his college career, Burrow ran for over 2000 yards, more than 600 of them coming from this past season.
For not having the best physical attributes, Burrow surprises a lot of people while out of the pocket.
His drop backs are also very smooth and he’s very relaxed while under center. He keeps his eyes downfield and is smart enough to know when not to escape.
Overall, his footwork is very clean, and he is able to extend a play very well. For a quarterback who lacks physical attributes, Burrow’s footwork is nearly flawless. I am going to give his footwork an A-.
In the NFL, especially if you’re going to a horrendous team, you better have some strong mental strength. To me, Burrow has shown extreme mental strength this season and he’s as cool as a cucumber under pressure. Burrow has ice in his veins, and it’s shown when he plays. He doesn’t let one bad play (which he didn’t have many of this season) get to him.
Burrow is confident in his ability, and that was shown during the National Championship. A lot of his big plays come from him having the courage and belief in himself to make the throw.
In summary, Burrow has insane mental strength that you rarely see in a quarterback coming out of college. Many people notice rookies having trouble finding themselves throughout the season, especially when they're losing, but Burrow doesn't fancy me to do that. Calm, collected, and determined, Burrow has all the mental attributes you look for in an NFL quarterback.I will grade his mental ability at an A.
Overall, Joe Burrow is a prospect like no other. Despite being 24 by the time he’s a rookie, I can’t see any team passing up on the option to draft Burrow. Many teams are even considering trying to trade up to get the services of the LSU quarterback, and it’ll definitely be a bidding war on draft night if any team wants to move up to the number one spot, currently held by the Washington Redskins.
I am not 100% in on Burrow, as he had one of the best teams in college football history around him, but as I said earlier, his talent is still undeniable. I am going to give his overall grade as a B. I think he has much more upside than downside and can become a real force in Cincinnati as long as they build around him. Coming into week one, expect him to be the starter and leading the huddle for whoever holds the number one pick when Rodger Goodell steps up to the podium, that be the Bengals or a team putting all their chips on the table to get Burrow.