Jerry Angelo is a former personnel director for the Bucs and former general manager of the Bears. Each week, Angelo answers your questions regarding the NFL. Send your questions to GarySheltonsports@gmail.com with "ask the expert'' in the subject line. The most interesting questions will be selected.
Friday, 5 a.m.
How much of a challenge does our old friend John Lynch face as the new general manager of the 49ers? He’s smart, he’s dedicated, but can he do the job? And will owner Jed York allow it to happen?
If there is anyone who can do the job without the traditional resume, it’s John Lynch. He’s an exceptional human being. He has the personality and business acumen you need to lead a franchise. He’ll face some huge challenges to get this franchise back in the business of winning. If ownership is patient, I believe John can produce, but it won’t be easy.
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Rex Ryan says his problem in Buffalo was that he set expectations too high. Does that mean the fans actually expected a winning record? Doesn’t everyone except Cleveland expect the playoffs?
Absolutely. Expectations are high in all NFL cities and they should be. There has been too many instances where franchises have turned it around overnight, so to speak. All the attrition there is in the league, and t.he parity that free agency breeds gives every team an opportunity to win and win now. That’s a fact. Why do some team do it and others don’t? You need coaching, good personnel decisions and operate with a plan where everyone is on the same page.
Devonta Freeman's agent picks now to say his client should be paid “like an elite back.” Okay, everyone wants more money, but if you’re the Falcons running back, don’t you have to tell the agent to shut up until next week
I guess, but he’s only going to yell louder. I love it! The Falcons are already hearing what the fruits of winning looks like, a whining agent and a greedy player.
Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman says a lot of things. What did you think of his suggesting that Pro Bowl players should get what they are paid for a regular-season game check? Wouldn’t that be a pricey sort-of game?
If the league wants them to show up and play, then pay them. I agree with him. They don’t want to play in a meaningless game.
There is absolutely no-win for the player. Only the threat of an injury. So, if the league continues to mandate the game, then pay them!
The Super Bowl often has heroes no one is expecting: From Max McGee to Tim Smith, from David Tyree to Mike Jones. Who will it be this time? Pick a guy from the following list: Atlanta’s Mohammed Sanu, New England’s Chris Hogan, Atlanta’s Keanu Neal or New England’s LeGarrette Blount.
In this game, I'd go with Sanu. The Patriots aren’t going to let Julio Jones beat them. The beneficiary of the extra coverage on him will obviously be Sanu. I’m sure the Falcons are anticipating this and will have a game plan in place to feature him.
I see where Atlanta’s Kyle Shanahan briefly lost his game plan for the Super Bowl. How soon will the rumors start that Bill Belichick was spotted at Kinko’s? Seriously, do you think the cheating charges will have a permanent affect on Belichick’s resume?
I believe so, because there have been multiple reports or accusations during his tenure as a head coach. That said, those blemishes will not keep him out of Canton’s Hall Of Fame or mar his record as a coach. In sports people are focused on the results, not the character of their idols.
Ben Roethlisberger hasn’t committed to playing in 2017. Do you really think a guy would walk away from that kind of money?
No I don’t. He’s just a little tired emotionally. Maybe he has a gripe or two that he wants someone to pay attention too.
Who knows, but it’s not just the money. The guy is a football player. He loves the game and the fanfare that comes with the position. Big Ben loves the limelight as many of his peers do. You just don’t walk away from that. Usually they have to drag you away and in Ben’s case I think that’s going to be the same.
Art Modell once cautioned Robert Kraft about hiring Bill Belichick. Who does that say more about? Modell or Kraft?
Certainly Kraft. He took a chance on a guy that wasn’t liked by the media and got fired in Cleveland.
That alone should make Kraft one of the smartest owners in football. Very few people would do what he did by hiring him. He did have some knowledge about Belichick when he was an assistant under Parcels while he was the head coach of the Pats. So he saw something and that something turned out to be a real gem. The gift that keeps on giving. Hooray for him!
Both San Diego and St. Louis are now without NFL teams. Do you think the NFL returns to either city in our lifetimes?
No, not this time around. Times have changed. The NFL is loyal to one thing and it’s not ‘has-been franchises'. You saw the last of that when they replaced the teams they lost in Baltimore and Cleveland.
The NFL is a conglomerate that is driven to grow their brand. There is little room for sentimentality or cities who can no longer support their franchises in the customary way of building new state of the art stadiums to create greater revenues for their brand.
Who is going to be the MVP of the Super Bowl?
This is an easy one. I’m not even going to say his name, because you already know who it is.
OK, it’s time to make your Super Bowl pick. Does Belichick get his fifth trophy, or do the Falcons get their first. How is this going to play out, and who is going to win?
It’s a Patriot day. Neither team is great and very similar in some ways, but in the end the guys that have been there the most will prevail.