We’re still about two weeks away from training camps kicking off in earnest. That means right about now, a good chunk of (mostly offensive) players are starting to get together at off-site locations to work outside the bounds of the CBA, as has become customary around the league in recent years. Those are the outings we know about: receivers working on their timing with their quarterback, usually at some locale that’s been funded by the big-money signal-caller.
But I’ve noticed a new addition to the end of the NFL off-season calendar, one that’s been in the shadows for years but is starting to spread across the league. More and more, it seems, players from different teams are spending a portion of their summers training together. A few examples:
Cam Newton and Antonio Brown spent several days together at an unknown location. They chronicled their adventures—luxury rides to workouts, on-field throw-and-catch sessions and the regular ol’ weight room work—on each other’s Instagrams.
On Wednesday we got a glimpse of former Offensive Rookie of the Year running back Todd Gurley working out beside (possible) future Offensive Rookie of the Year Saquon Barkley. Jalen Ramsey skipped OTAs (but came back for mandatory minicamp) to work with his dad and family in Nashville. Ramsey was working this week with Chargers cornerback Casey Hayward and Panthers cornerbacks Corn Elder and Rashaan Gaulden—among others—with a cameo from Jags coach Doug Marrone. And though it doesn’t necessarily fit the theme, let’s just throw in Julio Jones working out with Terrell Owens for good measure.
For some traditionalists, this could be considered heresy. But surely anyone hip enough to subscribe to this newsletter (or read this website version) doesn’t feel that way. There are several reasons for the perceived rise in opponents-turned-workout partners. Many guys have the same agents/publicity firms/apparel endorsers. And there are more opportunities than ever for these guys to meet and get to know each other away from the field, from Super Bowl week events to various player engagement programs. Whatever the reason(s), we’re getting more and more workout videos—the kind I chronicled a year ago.
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NOW ON THE MMQB: Albert Breer gives you his insanely early but very good 2019 mock draft. … In case you weren’t on the internet earlier this week, Andy Benoit had some thoughts on why the X’s and O’s of the NFL game is better than the college product. … “Well, allow me to retort,” says Andy Staples in his rival column. … and more.
WHAT YOU MAY HAVE MISSED: Michael McCann looks at the legal ramifications of everything surrounding Bills RB LeSean McCoy. … Yours truly had some final thoughts on Jerry Richardson and the statue he wanted to make sure still stands. … and more.
1. Giants GM Dave Gettleman thinks his team is getting their true third-round pick in CB Sam Beal after taking him in the supplemental draft.
2. Jaguars defensive tackle Marcell Dareus is facing two separate sexual assault lawsuits.
3. FOX is in talks with former Titans and Rams coach Jeff Fisher about an analyst gig, writes Michael McCarthy of Sporting News.
4. In one of the least surprising moves in the NFL, new Panthers owner David Tepper fired the team’s top lawyer, Richard Thigpen, within his first two days in the big chair.
5. How Philly sports personality Ray Didinger and his son David, an NFL Films cameraman, made Philly Special so special, from The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia.
6. The airport employee who tried to fight Pacman Jones (for whatever reason) in Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, predictably, ended up on the ground. Police arrested the employee, saying he was the instigator and Jones was defending himself, TMZ reports.
7. The Houston Chronicle reports five Texans cheerleaders have dropped their lawsuit against the team and have agreed to arbitration in a case related to alleged workplace violations.
8. Police say Cardinals GM Steve Keim did not in fact misidentify himself as the team’s security director; the arresting officer misunderstood Keim.
9. Because this storyline will never die, Supreme Court justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh doesn’t believe Dez caught it.
10. ESPN’s Mike Triplett takes us inside a complex NFL play call with the help of Sean Payton and Drew Brees.
Have a story you think we should include in the next Press Coverage? Let us know here.
Life came at John Schnatter with extreme quickness this week. After it was reported he used the N-word on a conference call, he resigned his seat on the University of Louisville board and, Wednesday night, resigned his position as CEO of Papa John’s. You’ll recall Schnatter waded into the conversation on protests during the national anthem. So long to the former fixture of NFL commercial breaks.
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Original Article: https://www.si.com/nfl/2018/07/13/summer-workouts-cam-newton-antonio-brown