2011 NFL Draft May Help Area Teams

By Hayden Gonzalez –

Throughout the entire National Football League, viewers have been anticipating their favorite teams on the field. With a lot of speculation on when the football season will start, a lot of people have been awaiting the 2011 draft picks.

“There is a lot of potential that is being brought into the NFL this year, so it’s kind of hard to predict who will be a team changer from the beginning,” said Antonio Vega, a 14-year-old freshman from Penn Manor High School.

Cam Newton from Auburn University was the number one draft pick this year for the Carolina Panthers.

The draft picks coming into the NFL in 2011 will impact the following season

Von Miller, Marcell Dareus, A.J. Green and Patrick Peterson were drafted in the first round by either the Carolina Panthers, Denver Broncos, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals or the Arizona Cardinals.

“All the players coming from the college level and going up to the national level are all very talented. It’s just a matter of time before each one of those draft picks fill in their role on their team, then they will be more established as a better player,” said Henry Kohler, an 18-year-old senior from Penn Manor High School.

The order of the draft picks this season goes the Carolina Panthers, Denver Broncos, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns, San Fransisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans, Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins, Houston Texans, Minnesota Vikings, Detroit Lions, St. Louis Rams, Miami Dolphins, Jacksonville Jaguars, New England Patriots, San Diego Chargers, New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kansas City Chiefs, Indianapolis Colts, Philadelphia Eagles, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks, Baltimore Ravens, Atlanta Falcons, Oakland Raiders, Chicago Bears, New York Jets, Pittsburgh Steelers and the Green Bay Packers.

Cam Newton is valued at such a high pick because during the 2010 season he threw for 30 touchdowns, he ran for 20 touchdowns and he also passed for 2,854 for the Auburn Tigers.

“He is one of the best quarterbacks all around that I’ve seen,” said Vega.

Yet, Newton isn’t the only important draft pick.

A wide receiver from Alabama Crimson Tide named Julio Jones is also expected to be a big game changer, similar as to what Dez Bryant was considered as when he entered the Draft.

Jones, a member of the Atlanta Falcons is 6 feet 2 inches, weighs in at a staggering 220 lbs and he also runs a 4.39 seconds in the 40 yard dash.

“Jones is a beast,” said senior Matt Aston. “Probably the most underrated player that went in the first round.”

There are many people who agree with these draft picks but it won’t be proven false or true until the National Football League is under way.

Cheeseheads vs. the Steel D – a Game to Watch

By Sam Valentin

The palace in Dallas will feature two teams which are arguably the most storied franchises in the NFL. The traditions of both teams go back to the likes of Vince Lombardi, Chuck Noll, and Bradshaw. Between them they both have nine Super Bowl championships.

The lights won’t need to be on in Dallas with all the star power that will take the field at approximately 6:00pm Sunday night. Some players are just trying to make a name for themselves, others have to prove things and even a select few could solidify their place in history.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is playing under much scrutiny ever since he replaced Brett Favre so he could shut down all the doubters with a Super Bowl win.

Ben Roethlisberger is looking for redemption for his mistakes.  He is also gunning for his third championship in his seven seasons in the NFL.

“He’s matured a whole lot,” said receiver Antwaan Randle El, who returned to Pittsburgh after spending time in Washington. “And that’s evident from the first Super Bowl he played in to the one he played in 2008. A very different quarterback,” said Randle EL in an interview with ESPN.

Points could become scare in this Superbowl of supercharged defenses, that could reign over the bigger named players.  There are sure to be great individual performances by many of the players on both sides of the ball and both teams.  The Steelers will bring a variation of their 1960s Steel Curtain defense led by James Harrison and recently named AP defensive player of the year and the anchor of their gritty defense, Troy Polamalu.

Image from foxsports.com.

But the high powered Green Bay attack led by Rodgers and his famed wideouts have finally found the answer to their previous next to nothing running game.

His name Starks, James Starks the low draft pick who has really came up big so far for the Packers.

The Steelers offense isn’t too bad in its own right, though. Led by Roethlisberger and veterans Hines Ward, who has some rumors about retirement after this season, and Rashard Mendenhall who is young but is looking forward to his time to run in the biggest spotlight.

The Steelers could be missing rookie and pro bowler Maurkice Pouncey who has a high ankle sprain and hasn’t practiced all week.

This game could top the previous Super Bowls with well matched defensive and offensive teams.

The players maybe joking around today and just trying to keep their normal routines but come Sunday there won’t be any jokes. Both teams will be all business and surely nervous as they step into the biggest spotlight of their careers.