Morgan Douglas– Sports Editor
Changing of the guard. A typical cliché, but one so applicable to today’s NFL.
As Ben Roethlisberger retires and the futures of aging veterans Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers remain uncertain, a new crop of young, talented quarterbacks have emerged from the shadows to take some of the spotlight reserved for the old guard.
Josh Allen vs. Patrick Mahomes has the feelings of this generation’s Brady vs. Peyton Manning. Joe Burrow is leading a team to the Super Bowl at 25 years old. Lamar Jackson has an MVP award. Justin Herbert is an incredible talent.
The AFC is loaded with these dynamic superstars at quarterback. Mahomes is the oldest of the group I mentioned and he’s only 26.
Expect AFC playoff races and divisional rounds to be exciting for the foreseeable future.
Even as some of the older QB’s age out and trade their shoulder pads for gold jackets in Canton, Ohio, they can retire knowing the future of the position is in fine hands.
Retirements also create job openings, as does mediocre performance.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are likely to have interest in Russell Wilson or Rodgers to take the place of Big Ben and must know by now Mason Rudolph will not cut the mustard.
Rodgers will have many potential suitors if he chooses to leave the Green Bay Packers.
The Denver Broncos have long been linked to Rodgers, as have the San Francisco 49ers, and after the 49ers were bounced from the playoffs due in part to a back-breaking Jimmy Garoppolo interception, no one should be surprised if they looked to trade Jimmy G to make room for Rodgers given the chance.
I cannot help but marvel at the precision of today’s NFL. Chiefs vs. Bills from a couple weeks ago was football nirvana and was the only game of the past six to have a margin of victory greater than three points.
All these teams have been so evenly matched recently to the point where walk-off kicks are becoming all the rage. Kickers have not gotten this much attention since the infamous double-doink in Chicago from 2019.
The only thing which makes me sad is it’s ending. One more game and then I’ll be spending my Sundays differently and having to get more creative with what I write in these columns.
Until now, a football column has been my security blanket. My Travis Kelce.
But I do not need to worry about it right now. There’s still 13 seconds left on this game clock, and I know I’m looking for #87 running up the seam.
White 80. Set. Hut.