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Falcons Could Reach NFC Championship (Hour 1)

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb
The Truth Network Radio
March 4, 2024 4:03 pm

Falcons Could Reach NFC Championship (Hour 1)

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb

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March 4, 2024 4:03 pm

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We got the whole band back together, Moist Mike here with me, Stuart Kovacs as well, we're rocking and rolling, jamming on out all the way up until 6pm Eastern, 3pm Pacific. Charles Davis is going to join us, CBS Sports Football Analyst also works with the NFL Network, we'll get the entire lay of the land, and a little recap from the NFL Combine and talk a lot of prospects today. And I always find it fascinating, whenever you do have the NFL Combine, which I've said before, like I was just on a bachelor party in Puerto Rico, and there's some times right when you're on the bachelor party, you know, do what I do for work, where a lot of your friends and people's friends friends, they start to ask you all these sports questions, and they're like, how can you go on a bachelor party when you have the NFL Combine going down? And I actually said to the person that asked me this, the NFL Combine, even though we talk about it a lot, because there's things that we have to do, is my least favorite event of the year when it comes to the football calendar. And the reason why is, you could have three or four years of really good tape, and I mean exceptional tape, and then you don't do well on a 40, or you don't do well on a three-cone drill, or they say that you flunked some test, or you don't interview well, and the next thing you know, you go from having a great NFL draft outlook, to maybe in a few days, your NFL draft stock plummeting and costing you millions and millions of dollars, or it could go the other way, where you have two, three years of tape, that is pedestrian, that is underwhelming, and you go run one blazing quick 40, and the next thing you know, you have a dumb team, sorry Stu, like the Raiders, who took Darius Hayward Bay all those years ago, earlier than anyone should have expected.

So the Combine, it's not that I think it's a horrible event, because it gives people an opportunity, it is the beginning process of job interviews pretty much, but I do think that there are times where we walk away from the Combine, and everything that we just talked about, maybe for a year, or even a few months, or even a few weeks, it vastly changes. And that's where I start, with the Atlanta Falcons. Before I got on this bachelor party, every Tom, Dick, and Harry was basically saying, oh, it seems like it's a done deal, that Justin Fields is going to the Atlanta Falcons.

Heck, there was even that video, right before I left for Puerto Rico, where Justin Fields' agent tweeted out some video of him, and in the background, you heard someone say, oh, isn't it good to be going back home? So it felt like that deal for Justin Fields was all done. And then, now, when you get all the NFL teams in one building, and under one roof, and I know that not every coach was there, but there's representatives from each team in the NFL across all 32 teams, that's when rumors start to occur.

That's when different information starts to transpire. And even though Justin Fields has been in the league for a few years, and Kirk Cousins has been in the league for longer than that, these aren't even draft guys. But when you have a meeting point where there's so many people that are involved with NFL teams in one building, then you start to hear people say things, or people start to leak things, and you don't know what the motives are. But the perception now, and the view now, is that the Falcons are going to go take a big swing at Kirk Cousins. So I don't know what to believe when it comes with the Atlanta Falcons. I don't know if they are going to pursue Justin Fields in a trade, and if that is their preeminent and priority number one option, or if that's their backup option, just in case that they swing and miss coming up next week, or in a few weeks when free agency starts with Kirk Cousins.

I don't have a damn clue. But this is what I think is going to happen. I do think Kirk Cousins is going to be the next quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons.

We'll get into it in just a second if that is the best option. But I don't believe that the Minnesota Vikings are going to retain Kirk Cousins, and it's for one reason, and one reason only. We heard from Ben Lieber, who is the Vikings sideline reporter, longtime Vikings linebacker, that Kirk Cousins will not, let me say this again, he will not take a hometown discount to remain with the Minnesota Vikings. I believe the Vikings like Kirk Cousins. I don't think the Vikings love Kirk Cousins. So I don't believe Minnesota is going to go above and beyond to pay Kirk Cousins.

Now with that being said, I don't think that's a smart decision. And the reason why I don't think it's a smart decision is for a few reasons, but the biggest reason is I don't know who the heck that you're going to bring in that's going to be better than Kirk Cousins. And I said this to Justin Jefferson at the Super Bowl. I even said it by prefacing it with I believe you should bring back Kirk Cousins, but I don't think your team is. And then he said, well, then who do you think is going to be the quarterback? And I said, I believe it's going to be Russell Wilson, which would not be an upgrade for the Minnesota Vikings. But I made it clear to Justin Jefferson that I think they need a veteran because this team isn't that far away compared to it being a rookie.

And he agreed. He wants a veteran in Minnesota. So you look at last year where there was a report, take it for what you want, that the Vikings tried to trade up to go get Anthony Richardson and they were aggressive.

Maybe Minnesota is going to be aggressive once again and attempt to trade up in the draft to go get a quarterback, with the possibility of the third pick held by my Patriots being available. But when you attempted to trade up last year for a quarterback, even though you weren't successful, it shows me that you like Kirk Cousins, but you don't love him. And I know Kevin O'Connell could basically profess his love for Kirk Cousins at the combine. Just because you say something in a press conference doesn't mean that I believe it. And also, let's not forget, Kevin O'Connell isn't the GM.

That's Kwasi Adolpho Mensah. And it just feels like with how much money they're about to give Justin Jefferson. And I know that I'm going to contradict myself here because I say it a lot, that the salary cap, it's a number. But there's flexibility in the way that you could work a contract. And every year there are teams that sit there and we sit here in March and we go, how are they going to get under the salary cap?

And they always find a way to do so. Like the Saints one year were $100 million over the salary cap. And they found a way to get under the salary cap by the date that they needed to. But when you're going to have to basically pay what would be average quarterback money now to Justin Jefferson, which is like north of $30 million a year. And that's an average QB money or like just slightly good quarterback money.

And you've got to do that for Jay Jettas. I do believe that's going to affect how much you could give to Kirk Cousins. And once again, I believe Minnesota likes Kirk Cousins.

I don't believe they love him. And I sense desperation from the Atlanta Falcons. And we talked about the conversation that I had at the Super Bowl with Justin Jefferson, both on and off the air with the owner of the Atlanta Falcons in Arthur Blank. He made it abundantly clear that he likes the way outside of the quarterback position that they have built this roster the last few years with Terry Fontenot. And notice it was Arthur Smith who was shown the door this past offseason.

It was not Terry Fontenot. And they've rebuilt that defense. They have a young secondary getting Bates over from the Bengals was enormous. And he had a monster season this past year. And on offense, you have Bijan Robinson, Tyler Algier, Drake London and Kyle Pitts. Bijan Robinson had a good rookie season. He could have had a great rookie season, but Arthur Smith just didn't use him the right way. Tyler Algier is an underappreciated player in this league.

Drake London very quietly had a good season. And I still believe that Kyle Pitts can be a very good tight end if he is used correctly. But Arthur Smith and the reason why he doesn't have a job is because he tried to make Desmond Ritter more than a game manager.

He didn't feed Bijan Robinson enough and he didn't use Kyle Pitts the right way. And Arthur Blank said all this team needs is a quarterback. He thinks they're a quarterback away.

So you look at what they should do. Should it be Fields or should it be Kirk Cousins? I think it should be Kirk Cousins because Kirk Cousins is a very good quarterback. He would be an instant upgrade. And there's no question about what Kirk Cousins is like Justin Fields. We're hoping that he will turn into this. There's untapped potential with Justin Fields. Well, you know what potential means?

It means you haven't done it yet. And sure, you could blame the Bears, but Fields also has to shoulder some of that blame too. And I would think that Justin Fields would be a whole lot of fun in Atlanta because he's quick. You know, he's got to improve with the arm. But we saw some big time throws this past year and he has an ample amount of weapons. But I know already what I'm getting with Kirk Cousins. Kirk Cousins is an underappreciated quarterback. Kirk Cousins could go win you double digit games a year and Kirk Cousins could take advantage of a garbage division, the worst division in football.

And I think he could do some more in Atlanta. And don't get me wrong, I don't believe you win a Super Bowl with Kirk Cousins, but I could see the Atlanta Falcons next year with their young, improving defense, the weapons and the way the weapons weren't used correctly with Arthur Smith and bringing in a new coach and a new offensive coordinator. I think with Captain Kirk, Atlanta next year could be playing in an NFC title game. And that's why I believe since you have a team that's not that far away and you have a team that just needs a quarterback, you go for the win now quarterback and the more proven quarterback, then the quarterback that you're just hoping will turn into the guy. And I'm not against Justin Fields. I like Justin Fields as a quarterback, but I don't believe Justin Fields is going to have a better career, ever be the quarterback that Kirk Cousins has been in the NFL. So Atlanta has a lot of decisions to make, and I do believe that they're going to prioritize Kirk Cousins over Justin Fields. But let's say Kirk Cousins goes back to Minnesota or another team antes up and ponies up and outpays the Atlanta Falcons. Then the interesting conversation becomes, does Atlanta offer up a second round pick for Justin Fields? And do they get the Justin Fields deal done because the Bears are going to take Caleb Williams with the first overall pick?

I think that's pretty clear. And then they're going to have to trade Justin Fields and the return is going to be, in all likelihood, a second round pick or maybe a three with some conditions on it. But I lean more that it's going to be a second round pick.

But you miss out on Kirk Cousins. And the conversation becomes, do you go trade for Justin Fields or when you sit there at eight? Do you try to move up into the top three or can you stay at eight and get your quarterback of the future?

And I look at this past weekend from the combine. The only thing I'm willing to say right now is Caleb Williams will be the first overall pick. I do think the commanders are going to take a quarterback, but I don't know which quarterback it's going to be. And then at three, I think it's a toss up that the Patriots take a quarterback or they trade the pick.

I really do believe that. So let's just say two out of the three first picks are quarterbacks. Let's just say that, like guaranteed. At number three, if it's, I don't know, Williams one, Drake made two, then there's going to be a big rush to three for Jayden Daniels. Now, let's say Jayden Daniels goes to and there are quarterbacks available at three like Drake May, J.J. McCarthy, Michael Penix Jr. I don't know how much of a mad dash there's going to be to the third overall pick, but there could be. So three is an option where the Falcons could trade up to. Five is an option because the Chargers and even four, because the Chargers and Cardinals both have their quarterbacks in Kyler Murray and Justin Herbert. The Giants could be interested in a quarterback in six.

I don't think Tennessee will be in seven. So to take a quarterback in the first round, you have to fall in love with that quarterback. It just depends who ends up falling down the board to eight or who's in striking distance for Atlanta, where you're going to want to attach a future first round quarterback.

So here's I believe Terry Fontana will handle this offseason. I think they will ultimately land Kirk Cousins. Kirk will be priority number one, but they don't get Kirk. Then I do believe Fields is priority number two and then it's trading up in the draft to get a pick for a quarterback or whoever remains there in at eight.

That's the way that I think it will go. And that's the way that I think it should go for the Atlanta Falcons. So we have a very simple poll question for you today and you can find it on my Twitter at Zach Elba retweeted at CBS Sports Radio. The Atlanta Falcons should trade for Justin Fields, sign Kirk Cousins, draft to QB in the first round.

The super duper early returns are as followed. Forty six point three percent. Overwhelming majority say trade for Justin Fields. Twenty seven point four percent say signed Kirk Cousins and twenty six point three percent say draft to QB in the first round. What should the Falcons do?

Eight five five two one two four CBS eight five five two one two forty two twenty seven. We will take a time out. Baker Mayfield could have a surprise suitor and Mike Evans is Mr. Buccaneer.

We'll talk about both those storylines. We return on the Zach Gelb show off and running on a very busy Monday after these short messages. Old man winter here. If I had it my way, it would stay winter all year long. Short days, wind chill, black ice and a good polar vortex.

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Subject to official rules at Baja Blast dot com and six fifteen twenty four void prohibited. Oh, I never thought I'd be saying this. My father is having a LeVar Ball type of moment right now on the good old cesspool of Twitter. And this is going to offend my father, but I'll say it anyway. This is why older people should not be on social media, because they think their sarcasm plays, but sometimes it may not. And I think if anyone knows my dad, they understand that he's kidding. But earlier this morning on the Maggie and Perloff show, Maggie was out.

And once Maggie is out, all hell, I guess, breaks loose on that show. The great E.J. Stewart, who I'm a big fan of and E.J., by the way, after spending an entire week with him in Las Vegas, he knows how to pick restaurants. He is a very underrated foodie here in the hallways of three forty five Hudson Street.

I didn't realize that. But you had E.J. filling in with Perloff and somehow, you know, I wasn't up for this conversation.

I called in later, but I was getting mentioned on social media and they tweet out a video. Perloff recalled the time when I was actually filling in on his show with him and he thought it would be a good idea to try to go up against me. Him being a defensive lineman and me being an offensive lineman. Well, like Perloff just thinking he'd be able to get past me is a joke. And the moment Perloff went and got close to me, I think he got a little scared because when E.J. said hike, he ran in the other direction. So they were talking about this earlier this a.m. and there's video of E.J.

Perloff, Pete the Body Baladi, who I love, Andrew Bogusch and Ryan Botcher. So my dad sees the video where Perloff accuses me of being over 300 pounds, which is not true. And you're spelled 286. No, I'm lower than that these days. There wasn't. Trust me, there was a day where I was well over 300 pounds. But now I am not in the 300 pound range.

But Perloff and E.J. put out this video and my father responds on social media talking about me. I constantly kick his tuchus, which is not true. And then number two, he then takes a shot at the morning show.

You guys, with the exception of Maggie, are a bunch of milk toast panty wastes. What the heck does that mean? So now here we go having my dad try to hype up his athletic ability like LeVar Ballwood and take a shot at me saying he still kicks my ass, which let's just set the record straight. The last time my dad was willing to go up against me in any athletic competition was in seventh or eighth grade. And we were at the local gym and we were playing basketball and I backed him down and he fell on his ass.

And then it was that day where my dad said, I am not roughhousing anymore with my son. So let's get that on the record. And then number two. You take a shot at the morning show when it's E.J. Perloff, botcher, baladi and bogus.

And you basically call them a bunch of wimps. So this is just not good right now, Samter. And also, Samter, the morning show took a few shots at you this morning. I don't even know if you're aware of this, because once Perloff realized it's probably not good to have a rematch with me on an offensive line drill, I volunteered. I said you could have and I hate to throw E.J. in this conversation, but Perloff dragged him in it. I said you could have E.J. and Perloff go both up against me. And I think I would be more than fine being able to hold my own in a blocking drill.

And then they went after you. At the same time? Yeah, oh easy. Like a two on one? I don't know about that.

It's basically like two on one and a half. Perloff, come on, he's a pencil. He's a pencil. Perloff will be like just trying to line up behind E.J.

and push to try to knock me over. It wouldn't happen. And I like E.J. E.J.

I think could hold his own for a little bit, but I don't think it's going to go that far. So yeah, you have my father going after I guess the morning show and they took a little bit of a shot at you. Now I will fully admit I had a sarcastic throwaway line where I was like, because they were going after you saying, oh we like our chances if Samter was the second person. And I said, oh it's kind of like just our show then. I'll just carry around Samter like he's dead weight or something.

I was kidding when I said that to get the cheap easy laugh. I don't actually mean that. If you listen to this show, you know I love Samter, I love Stu, and we are a team here and we are built off checks and balances. I thought we were a team until that line. I mean, you know, listen, we kind of rib each other, but I don't go on other shows and talk junk about you. I feel a little hurt right now. I don't know about that.

I get some tweets when I'm away that you guys were going after me a little bit with Bart Winkler, which maybe we'll investigate anyway. But I say about 33.3% most of the times on this show. I get 33.3%, Samter gets 33.3%, and Stu gets 33.3%.

But those percentages, depending on the decisions, are sometimes subject to change. And let me also just set the record straight, okay? I'm a damn good football player.

I say this in all seriousness. I was on my freshman football team. I started out as the fourth string running back. But it was mostly because the coach knew all the other running backs and he was worried about me getting hurt.

So he was like, I don't want to put him in. But during all the drills, I dominated. I was very good. Even to the point where we would do Oklahoma drills, we would do blocking drills, and I would take down our star defensive linemen. I would get past our star offensive linemen.

I would take down our star defensive linemen. Well, football is about being low, low to the ground. So it's low, it's leverage, it's balance, and I had all that, and I'm also very shifty. I'm very quick.

I don't have the super high-end top speed, but I'm very shifty, very quick. I was very good. My coach was like, you know what? After weeks and weeks of realizing that I was really good and just being worried about me getting hurt and me not getting hurt, he's like, you know what? You're my new starting running back.

Three plays into being the starting running back turned my ACL. So I do have skills. Can I just ask a question? How many years ago was this? I mean, this was a long time ago. How many years ago? Are you the guy that talks about the high school glory days and what could have been if you didn't get hurt? No, no, no, not at all.

Her love is older than me, so his glory days are well beyond mine. My father still bitches and complains about how he got robbed of a baseball trophy at summer camp and still has his average home runs, RBIs, and how many guys he threw out from center field at home plate. There's just some people that...

Sounds like Al Bundy. His four touchdowns in a single game for Paul Kai. There's just some people that, as they go through the years, they think their playing abilities were better than what the reality actually was.

Like, I will say, I got told by ESPN, they hit me up, that 30 for 30 was going to do a 30 for 30 on Samter, and when they were looking at athletes whose injuries derailed their career, and it went Andrew Luck 1, and then it was Michael Samter 2. I beat out Bo Jackson, which was really amazing. I was surprised that I beat out Bo.

But I was right there. I mean, listen, freshman year, Scarsdale High School football was a juggernaut, and having the starting running back under my belt, it would have been guaranteed... You said Bo Jackson, right? Yeah, I said Bo Jackson. How old are you? Older than you. Wait, I know, but Bo Jackson is 61 years old. I don't think you're 61 years old.

How did you guys go to high school at the same time? No, no, no. You're talking about all-time career injuries being derailed. And I said, you know, I was right behind Bo Jackson, right in front of Bo Jackson behind Andrew Luck.

Oh, okay. I thought you meant on the depth chart at your high school. I was like, let me see that depth chart at your high school.

Yeah, yeah. I don't think Bo Jackson would have been going to my high school. My high school was a lot of guys who looked just like me. But my father broke my number one rule here. And that's when there's things posted about me on social media, you don't respond. So now I feel like I'm Micah Parsons or Dak Prescott or C.D.

Lamb, where I need to respond for the actions of my loved ones. No, no, no, no. It's not your responsibility. Your father is a grown man. Well, sometimes he acts like a child if we're being honest. So do all of us. Let's be honest.

Apple doesn't fall from far from the tree in the Gelb family. But I'm not going to lie out of that show. And I said this on the air with them. If we had to do an offensive lineman defensive lineman drill. I think I'm most afraid of Maggie, especially if you give Maggie a margarita, because Maggie has this side to her. Well, like if we were getting into a bar fight here at CBS Sports Radio and I had to pick one person from that morning show. It's not E.J. It's definitely not Perloff. Like he's hiding underneath the bar and he's just like, oh, please don't have any bottles at me in the face. It's definitely not botcher.

It's definitely not bogus. You know, Pete, I feel like could get a few jabs in there. But it's easily Maggie.

Maggie is by far and away the toughest person on that show. You know, five, six, seven years ago, I would have said maybe bloody. He's softened up as a father these days. He's a he's a much kinder, softer, happier person. But five, 10 years ago, there was some anger behind those eyes.

I agree with you. Maggie's dangerous. Maggie's trouble. But also, Pete can't afford to get into a fight now because Pete's other job is being like the program director and student media director at a college radio station. You can't have the director of the youth and the people that will be future talk show hosts. You can't have that guy getting into a bar fight.

That just would be no bueno. You get fired if you're a teacher and you get into a bar fight, you get arrested. I mean, Cam did it. Cam Newton? Yeah. You know, he was in charge of a bunch of kids in the camp and he got into a big fight. I'm just going to say this. I believe what Pete the body baladi is to C.W.

Post. He is a better mentor than Cam is on the seven on seven camp where he was talking smack allegedly and then got into a fight with three people. And throughout the years, I don't know if there's been a bigger supporter of Cam than me and a bigger defender of Cam than me. But I will say that Pete is a better mentor to the youth than than Cam is at his football. So if we were to have like a show kind of athletic competition, whether we're doing football, basketball, what else in the morning show? Yeah.

Now, granted, listen, they had the numbers because they have more people. But if it's a you, me and Stu versus Maggie and body. Now, if we throw Andrew in, then we have to add act to our crew also.

Now, act is act. I could see being athletic. So Pearl off, I think, would win the basketball shooting competition. But the other sports, I think we'd win easily.

I do. I think we are. This is a pretty low bar around here. I think we are in more athletic show than the morning show. Now, let me be abundantly clear about this. That does not mean if you put us up against other radio shows, we would hold our own. But I'm very confident in saying against the morning show, we would hold our own. I think you have to throw some pickleball in there, too, no? I may need to get endorsed, though, by Icy Hot.

I'd be like Shaquille O'Neal because, you know, I have to ice my back for carrying the team. All right. But we do have youth on our side. We do have youth on our side. We do. And we have you and Stu, not me. And we have a lot of hunger, too.

Jason Kelsey retired today. He said hungry dogs run faster. I feel like Stu's a hungry dog. Stu will definitely take out a few kneecaps if we need it. He told me he skipped lunch today. He's starving.

Yeah. It's the Zach Gelb show on CBS Sports Radio. Jeff Howe said that the Patriots are very high on Baker Mayfield. I like Baker. I do not want Baker as the Patriots starting quarterback. And it's the same reason why a few years ago I said when there was a potential Jimmy Garoppolo reunion, why I wouldn't want Jimmy Garoppolo back. And I do believe Baker's a better quarterback than Jimmy G. I don't think Baker Mayfield has a ceiling of being great. I just think he could be a good quarterback in this league and he could play consistently like what he did in Cleveland for that one year.

And some of the moments that you saw this season in Tampa Bay. But I don't think you look at Baker as being the franchise quarterback ever. I think he's just a guy that you say, OK, he's a good serviceable quarterback in the league. And also the Patriots don't have a lot of talent right now. So you're telling me Baker Mayfield to stop gap guy.

OK. But if the Patriots operate this offseason by saying, OK, we'll take Marvin Harrison junior at three, which I would like. But then it's you're making Baker Mayfield be the quarterback. You're eventually going to get someone in a year or two from now to replace Baker Mayfield. But if you are going to get Baker, that's probably going to be a three or four year contract that he's going to commend command. And I don't believe that the Patriots right now should give a three or four year contract to any quarterback on the market right now. Justin Fields via trade shooting up three or four or four year contract extends for the Patriots. Kirk Cousins, they sign him. No way. Russell Wilson, when he becomes available.

No way. The only way I would be willing to give that deal is if there is a quarterback that you say could be a franchise quarterback and there won't be one available on the free agent market or via trade. So it would have to be in the draft. And I think the Patriots should do two or three things right now. You either take Jaden Daniels and only Jaden Daniels if he's there at three. I do not want Drake May. If you don't take Jaden Daniels and let's say he's off the board at two and Drake May is there at three. I would either trade the pick or I take Marvin Harrison Junior. The Patriots need a lot of talent. They don't have to reach for a player that they don't love. So draft the best player available or trade back for future draft capital.

Don't just take a quarterback because you think you have to take a quarterback. It is that Gelb show on CBS Sports Radio. We'll take a break when we come on back. Sampders got some questions for me.

I got some answers. We'll do a little onside offside. But first, let's get the latest CBS Sports Radio update in from the act man, Rich Acker. Oh, should we start this show?

Yeah, I'm down. Just buying a car and Carvana first for real. Yeah, it's super convenient. I already got prequalified in two minutes. All I had to do is answer a few questions. Oh, that's helpful. And now just customizing my down and monthly payments. Oh, that's a very fair deal. Yep.

Boom. Just bought a car and you get to take me to the Carvana vending machine in a couple of days to pick it up. Oh, I'm kind of busy.

Visit Carvana dot com to finance your next car financing subject to credit approval. When something happens to your car, you might say. But what you really need to say is something that can actually help. Like a good neighbor. State Farm is there. Just like that. State Farm is there to help you file your claim right on the State Farm mobile app. So just remember, like a good neighbor. State Farm is there. State Farm, Bloomington, Illinois. It's that time of year. Cash the ticket.

Jim Costa with Mike Valenny. We shift the focus from football to college hoops. Play in that system that's not a system but sure plays like a system leading up to the tournament. We're looking for that value with the daily dimes. We look for the gross lines. Getting us ready for the tournament where we're going to break down all the matchups and have an eye on some future plays, too.

This time of year, baby. Search cash the ticket on the Odyssey app or wherever you get your podcasts. Zach's taking on the most polarizing issues in sports. Which side of the line of scrimmage will he end up on? Offside defense number sixty-nine. It's onsides, offsides with Zach Gelb on CBS Sports Radio. It's time to Ask the Pros where you, the listener, get to ask us a question brought to you by O'Reilly Auto Parts. Simply tweet your question at CBS Sports Radio at Zach Gelb using the hashtag Ask the Pros. Be listening later in the show where we might answer your question. Think O'Reilly Auto Parts for all your car care needs.

Get guaranteed low prices and excellent customer service from the professional parts people at O'Reilly Auto Parts. Sampter, what do we got cooking today? It's good to have you back, Zach. I'll say that. We missed you the past couple weeks. I appreciate that.

It's very nice. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Listen, I mean, the fill-ins that you have are certainly better than you on the air, but still good to have you back anyway. That's good to know. We'll make sure we repeat the fill-ins when I take future vacations as well.

Perfect. Now, with that said, the Eagles will need a fill-in at center because, as expected, Jason Kelce retired from the NFL today, capping off his sure-fire Hall of Fame career. Now, ESPN is also reporting that borderline Hall of Famer, Fletcher Cox, we can talk about that at some point too, is also expected to retire this offseason. Onside offside, the Eagles' Super Bowl window is closed.

I'm going to give this a caveat the way that I answer this. I'm going to say onsides as long as Nick Sirianni is still the coach. I know they brought in one of the more overrated offensive minds in the game this year, Kellen Moore, to be their OC. I like the hire of Vic Fangio, who has familiarity there, to be their DC. But I think there is a locker room problem in Philadelphia.

And I've said this 9,000 times, I'll say it 9,001 times. The players like Nick Sirianni. You have to be a player coach nowadays, but you can't be a doormat. And unfortunately, even though he's been to the playoffs three times, he's been in a Super Bowl, Nick Sirianni. I think he's viewed as more of a doormat in that locker room. And even though the NFC is pretty open, I don't trust Sirianni to be able to galvanize that group and reignite them to get back to being that dominant team that they once were. And that defense needs a lot of work.

And I don't even know if Hassan Reddick is going to be back with some of the trade speculation. So the Eagles' Super Bowl window is closed. I'm going to say onsides. Now after two consecutive AFC North titles, the Bengals finished last in the division as Joe Burrow played in just 10 games. Tearing a ligament in his wrist in Week 11 and missing the rest of the year. This weekend, Burrow gave Cincy fans good news telling ESPN he expects to fully be cleared by the middle of May. Therefore, he'll be ready for training camp and all good for Week 1 at this point. Onside, offside. With a healthy Joe Burrow, the Bengals are the best team in the AFC North.

So, Kit, I'm going to answer it this way. The Chiefs should be the Super Bowl favorite heading into next year because of Mahomes. But that doesn't mean that they're the best team. The Chiefs' defense was phenomenal this past year. Offensively, though, I need to see what they're going to do where, yes, Mahomes is like a human eraser.

And Kelsey, when needed to, is going to be great as always in the postseason, even if the regular seasons aren't what they once were. Isaiah Pacheco, a solid running back. Rasheed Rice, a good wide receiver. But I look at the Bengals, assuming T. Higgins is still there.

I know they franchised Hagen, but we'll see if he gets trade. They're going to lose Tyler Boyd. You still have Jamar Chase. You got Burrow, and you had an underappreciated defense the last few years. I do believe the Bengals are a more well-rounded team than the Kansas City Chiefs. And also, they've had success up against the Chiefs. There was that rung where they beat them three straight times before losing in that AFC Championship game. They also beat them another time in the AFC Championship game. So the Bengals are the biggest threat to the Chiefs. I think the Bengals are the better team when comparing them to Kansas City. But you asked us about the AFC North, right? Yes. This was more about the Ravens, the Steelers, and the Deshaun Watson-led no Joe Flacco Browns.

Okay. Yeah, they are on sides. I don't know why I started going all about the Kansas City Chiefs.

I was wondering that too, but now I understand you omitted the North part of this. Yeah, I just thought you meant that that was a hangover response from back-to-back weekend to the bachelor parties who were just going to be fully transparent. Maybe it's not good to have you back. No, yeah, maybe not.

I need a load management day, everybody. Yeah, I gave you too long of an answer here because it was about the Chiefs. Yeah, they're the best team in the AFC North, the team that you trust the most instantly on sides. It's interesting because all four of those teams, depending on who the Steelers grab as their quarterback, could make a claim. Well, the Steelers aren't going to make a move at quarterback.

It's going to be Kenny Pickett, and they'll bring in a backup because that's what the Steelers will do. You take a look at the Ravens. The Ravens are now just one of those teams.

I don't give a rat's ass what they do in the regular season until they get the job done in the postseason. In the Browns? Deshaun Watson? As good as they were, Deshaun Watson returns to even 90% of the four that he was, which I don't think is going to happen. And then also, you have Nick Chubb coming off another major injury.

If he's even on their roster. So the Bengals are the best team in the AFC North, yeah, on sides. Just forget about the last two to three minutes that you heard before that.

We have a two to three minute delay. None of that even made it. You can't help talking about my Chiefs.

They are just that good. Now, the combine concluded this week in Indy, but one of the bigger headlines is the number of athletes opting out of workouts, with Caleb Williams even opting to not do medical checks. And many saying the 40-yard dash now feels like an outdated measuring tool. So onside, offside, the NFL should actually do away with the combine. Offside, and the reason why is because the interview process and then also getting all those teams in one building is still good. And even though guys like Caleb Williams don't need the combine, there are some people that the combine still does help in a big, and I mean a big way.

So it's not just for the stars, it's for everyone. So yes, the NFL should do away with the combine is the question. I will go no offside. Offside. Now the NFL is changing onside kick rule with the new proposal saying teams can only attempt an onside kick if they're trailing in the fourth quarter.

Yeah, I hate this. And they must declare ahead of time that they're going to kick an onside. So onside, offside, literally, teams should be allowed to onside kick whenever they want without telling anybody what they're doing.

Onsides, and I'll take it a step further. The NFL, they try to tell you they care about player safety, but they have weird battles on when they actually pick and choose when they care about player safety. With the kickoffs, oh, we care about player safety.

We're going to basically try to eliminate the onside kick, and then we'll try to bring it back in some different way years later. But no problem giving you a 17th regular season game, an extra one, and now there's reports that they're going to give you an 18th regular season game. So do you care about player safety? Then you tell me, oh, well, they'll eliminate preseason games. A lot of these players don't even give a rat's ass about the preseason.

So don't give me that nonsense. Just go back to how the kickoff always was. That may not be a popular opinion, but when you pick and choose when you care about player safety, that's not the right way to run your league. So you ask me, teams should be allowed to onside kick whatever they want without telling the other team. Yeah, onsides, and they should go back to the old way that the onside kick and the kickoff rules used to be. Now, EA Sports is bringing back their popular college football game, offering athletes $600 and a free game to opt in and allow their likeness to be featured in the game. After just a week of enrollment, it's been eight days, over 10,000 players have opted in, including stars like Jalen Milro, Quinn Ewers, Carson Beck, and Travis Hunter.

Onside, offside. Superstar players like the ones I just mentioned should get paid more than everyone else to opt in to EA Sports. That's a great question.

Thank you. So they're giving everyone just a flat fee of $600. $600 and a free game, which comes out to another $70 in value or so. So there's more players, there's rumors that there's players that are like, oh, maybe I'll try to negotiate something else to have them use my name image and like this in the game? As of right now, about 87% of all eligible players have opted in, so a large number. So maybe some guys have just, you know, they're on vacation or they're not thinking about it or some guys are choosing not to do it.

But for the most part, the vast majority of people are doing it. Yeah, I would say so. I would say onside to that, that if someone wants to leverage their NIL in the game, sure. But then EA has the same right to create someone that looks similar or is, you know, who the player is in the game and not play them. Like how many times did Bill Belichick, you knew who the coach of the Patriots was in Madden, but Belichick never agreed to it. So they put some guys that didn't look like him, but they would always have like a high coaching ranking on him. You could do that with players, right?

So I would go onsides here. Players should, star players should get paid more than everyone else too often. Now LeBron James became the first player in NBA history to eclipse 40,000 points, but the Lakers remain 10th in the West. LeBron has gone to the playoffs three times, including winning the bubble title in his first five years in LA. This is his sixth. Often known as an NBA championship still, the bubble title.

Yeah, but still it's the bubble title. Now Gilbert Arenas was talking with Shannon Sharpe on his podcast and he was talking about whether LeBron should get a statue for the Lakers. Do you believe the Lakers will build a statue for LeBron? If his career stopped right now, hell no. He don't have enough accolades in the Laker uniform. He needs another title.

Yeah. The closest statue we had with that was Shaq. Shaq, eight years. Was it four rings? No, three rings. You know, so it's going to be hard to put him in there with six years, 8,000 points, one championship, six All-Stars.

That's not good. That's not good enough for a statue in Los Angeles. So onside, offside, the Lakers should build a statue of LeBron, even if this is his last year in LA. Onsides, like I'm not telling you LeBron is a top five Laker of all time. When you look at the accomplishments for only in a Laker uniform, but he did win a championship there.

And he's going to go down as one of the greatest players of all time. You know, Gilbert Arenas is starting to annoy me. I see a lot of stupid things being said from Gilbert Arenas, which is not surprising. But look how he like downgrades the accomplishments of LeBron James. Where like Gilbert Arenas, don't get me wrong, was a very good NBA player and an enjoyable player to watch. But you're only a three-time NBA All-Star.

Like you never got close to winning an NBA championship. So if you're going to talk that way about LeBron, like then how do you want people to talk about your career? So I think LeBron should get a statue with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Alrighty, this is Zach Gelb's show on CBS Sports Radio. Stu, real quickly, yes or no? LeBron's statue? I say no. Ooh, and that's coming from a Lakers fan. So maybe Gilbert Arenas does have a point.

I think not though. Charles Davis going to join us on the other side. Lot of juicy stuff from the combine, and where will J.J. McCarthy get drafted? We discuss that next. We'll be right back. Offers end soon. Call 562-314-4603 for details. So pick up a Baja Blast wherever you are.

In stores now. When something happens to your car, you might say, No! My car! But what you really need to say is something that can actually help. Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there. And just like that, State Farm is there to help you file your claim right on the State Farm mobile app. So just remember, like a good neighbor, State Farm is there. State Farm, Bloomington, Illinois.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-04 16:44:06 / 2024-03-04 17:04:31 / 20

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