With 165 days to go until the 97th season in the history of the NFL is scheduled to kick off, here’s a quick recap of what has happened so far during the off-season.
The St. Louis Rams moved out of their home in Missouri and returned to Los Angeles California, renamed the Los Angeles Rams where they resided from 1946 until 1994. The new series of Hard Knocks will follow their journey of their move covering training camps.
Free agency has seen a number of high profile players change teams [read more on that, here] and we’ve also seen a number of head coach changes. Mike Pettine was fired by the Cleveland Browns and replaced by Hue Jackson. Joe Philbin was fired by Miami Dolphins and replaced by Adam Gase. Tom Coughlin resigned from the New York Giants and will be replaced by Ben McAdoo. Philadelphia Eagles fired Chip Kelly prior to the season ending, Pat Shurmur took over as interim with Doug Pederson hired for the 2016 season. Chip Kelly is now with San Francisco 49ers following the firing of Jim Tomsula. Lovie Smith was fired by Tampa Bay Buccaneers and replaced by Dirk Koetter and finally Tennessee Titans fired Ken Whisenhunt and replaced by Mike Mularkey.
Whilst there have been some exciting movements there have also been a number of retirements, some we were prepared for, some we weren’t including Detroit Lion’s Calvin Johnson. I’m lucky to say I saw him play at the NFL International Series last year, also rather selfishly, I bought his jersey when they came over, I’d have been devastated if he went elsewhere!), another surprise was Seattle Seahawks Marshawn Lynch, such an incredible talent and one I expected not to retire at all but go join another team. The announcement of retirement is something I think we all suspected from Peyton Manning. We also saw Justin Tuck, Jared Allen, Logan Mankins, Matt Hasselbank, Jon Beason, Rashean Mathis, Heath Miller and Jerod Mayo hang up their helmets for the last times.
There is still likely to be more actions and the Draft is now just weeks away. We’re also expecting the regular season game schedule to come out in the next week or so with the first game kicking off on September 8, 2016. Super Bowl LI will kick off on February 5, 2017 at the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, home of the Houston Texans. With their impressive activity during free agency, could they be the team we see in the final?
Watch this space…