Myrick 2.0 NFL MOCK DRAFT

The NFL combine is here and everyone who loves the draft, like myself, are all tuned in. Owners, General Managers, coaches, scouts finally get to see what the best athletes in college has to offer. From the measurements and interviews to showing what they can do out there on the field, this is the time to answer the most of the important questions. Let’s not get carried away on who has the fastest 40 time or who can have the most reps at the but pay attention to what will translate.

The draft order has been set for a month, with Kansas City Chiefs winning the Super Bowl over the San Francisco 49ers in Miami. The Chiefs moved up in the draft through trade to select, future Super Bowl MVP, Patrick Mahomes in the 1st round in 2017 and drafted Eric Fisher 1st overall in 2013. So who will select their future Super Bowl Champion — Here’s my 2nd version of how it will shape out come April.

1. Cincinnati Bengals

Usatoday.com

QB Joe Burrow, LSU

Even though his words from recent interviews haven’t embraced the nickname of ‘the Bayou Bengal’, I will continue to pick Joe Burrow here first, every single time. Will he pull an Eli Manning – I’m not sure if he has the leverage to do so. While everything went right for Burrow and LSU in 2019, to me, there lies a concern about him being a 1-year wonder, but the Bengals know Zac Taylor needs everything to succeed and that includes the most important position in football.

2. Washington Redskins

Associated Press

DE Chase Young, OHST

Young is the best player in the 2020 NFL Draft and every team knows it. Chase Young would be the first pick in most drafts following guys like Clowney and Garrett as top picks but it’s fine, he can be Von Miller (2nd overall in 2011) and Nick Bosa (2nd overall in 2019) who both went on to win DROY. Rivera won’t waste time with this decision

3. Detroit Lions

USA TODAY Sports

DB, Jeff Okudah, OHST

Jeff Okudah is one of my favorite players in the draft and will be the 3rd Ohio guy off the board. There have been talks that Lions GM Bob Quinn would like to trade back but how far? Lions need a star, with Darius Slay contract looming, with Slay or without the CB position is a dire need. I predicted this defense would be top 8 in the league and that prophet prediction was way off (lions defense ranked 31st in 2019).  The thing I like about Okudah is he’s phenomenal in pass coverage and to prevent separation with a combination of size, speed, athleticism and instincts. NO BRAINER.

4. New York Giants

Alabama Athletics

OT, Jedrick Wills, BAMA

With the ability to play either tackle spot, I have Wills as my highest ranked O-Lineman in the draft. Wills is big (6’5 320 lbs), strong, quick and athletic. Giants have invested in Daniel Jones (6th pick in 2019) and Saquon Barkley (2nd pick in 2018) the only way to protect and clear lanes for those investments is to continue to work on the OL. Daniel Jones fumbled 13 times in 9 games, Giants please help!

5. Miami Dolphins

USAtoday.com

QB, Tua Tagovailoa, BAMA

Tua is the best QB in this draft! Don’t let what Joe Burrow did in 1 year overlooked what Tua has done dating back to the championship comeback vs UGA as a true freshman. Tagovailoa has a quality arm that can make any throw required in the NFL. Accuracy and poised, no wonder he’s been compared to Drew Brees.

6. Los Angeles Chargers

Montgomery Adviser

DE Derrick Brown, AUB

Yes, Philip Rivers will no longer be the QB at the helm. No, the Chargers shouldn’t panic and draft a QB. Derrick Brown from Auburn is a monster. Interior DL has been the chargers weakness for years and they have the opportunity to fix it. With Ingram and Bosa on the edge and Derwin James at safety this defense can bounce back and be one of the best. He’s a monster in the ground game and as a pass rusher – take BPA (best player available) and don’t look back.

7. Carolina Panthers

Hawkeye Sports

OT Tristan Wirfs, IOWA

Good in both sets, plays with good leverage as a run blocker and sustains his blocks well enough to make room for the stud running back in Christian Mccaffery and blocking for whoever is at the helm for QB next season, if its Cam Newton or Kyle Allen, someone needs to protect. Carolina has a long rebuild ahead. Tackle is not the sexiest move but a building block.

8. Arizona Cardinals

Bucs Report

OT Mekhi Becton, UL

He’s a late riser and physical freak, for his size he has great athleticism – much need blocker for Kyler Murray. Kingsbury need his QB to have more time to execute the offense and this is the start.

9. Jacksonville Jaguars

usatoday.com

LB Isiah Simmons, CLEM

Versatility is my favorite attribute. Simmons can play Linebacker, Safety, Slot Corner, Running Back, and Quarterback….. You get my point. With Telvin Smith not coming back, no Jalen Ramsey, this defense needs talent. Imagine Simmons and Myles Jack controlling the middle of the field for years.

10. Cleveland Browns

USA TODAY Sports

OT Andrew Thomas, UGA

Kevin Stefanski did a great job last year as the Vikings OC with a suspect OL and this was Baker Mayfield’s problem last year. He looked like he was seeing ghost so it’s best to add a much need tackle to the team. Baker has everything to succeed from a weapon standpoint but the OL needs to protect and that’s what Thomas from UGA can bring.

11. New York Jets

Alabama Athletics

WR Jerry Jeudy, BAMA

My WR1 in this draft class, with Robbie Anderson looming, either way Jets need a #1 guy for Sam Darnold. Jeudy has been impressive since day 1 with his route running ability. He has the skills to be very dynamic and walk on the team as an instant star. Getting Darnold the tools is succeed should be priorty one.

12. Las Vegas Raiders

Sooner Sports

WR Ceedee Lamb, OKLA

Since Jeudy is off the board, the Raiders will run up to the podium to select Lamb. A lot of people say that Lamb doesn’t have the speed but the Raiders need someone who can get open. Good size, good hands and route running ability, I don’t see Gruden passing up on WR of this caliber.

13. Indianapolis  Colts

(Photo by Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

DT, Javon Kinlaw, SCAR

The story of Kinlaw should amaze everyone. He’s work extremely hard to get to this point and getting drafted top 15 is the icing on the cake. Kinlaw was the best player at Senior Bowl practices from either team and the first thing that stands out about Kinlaw is his size. He is quick to close and has strength to fight off blockers. Notice I didn’t spend this pick on a QB – it’s because I’m not a fan of the Jordan Love hype train to go this high so take Kinlaw.

14. Tampa Bay Bucs

Stampede Blue

QB Justin Herbert, ORE

I think Jamies Winston will be back but Bruce Arians may be looking for someone to groom. Herbert has something in common with Big Ben, Peyton Manning, and Carson Palmer,ho all played under Arians, the similarity is they all are TALL with a BIG ARM. Learning what NOT to do by watching Jamies can also help.

15. Denver Broncos

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

WR Henry Ruggs

Henry Ruggs may have been the 2nd best WR on this team but he was one of the best in the country. Ruggs will have the fastest 40 yard time at the combine and that enough will move him ahead in the draft. If Drew Lock continue to be the starter having the TE set, the RBS and your #1 WR Cortland Sutton, adding Ruggs as the deep threat would be a perfect fit.

16. Atlanta Falcons

SI.com

DE K’Lavon Chaisson, LSU

The Falcons aren’t bringing back Beasley, Chaisson from LSU has great bend around the edge and the ability to create chaos for a team that was toward the bottom in sacks. Chaisson doesn’t have the numbers but if you watch the games, the impact was felt.

17. Dallas Cowboys

Alabama Athletics

S, Xavier Mckinney, Bama

Mckinney has moved up on my board as the #1 Safety ways ahead of Delpit. McKinney is the jack-of-all-trades in the secondary, as he is able cover tight ends and wide receivers, can play deep zone free safety, also has the strength to tackle and can be the eighth man in the box. McKinney has size, speed, athleticism and upside for the NFL. He’ll be a can’t miss prospect for the Dallas Cowboys.

18. Miami Dolphins (Steelers)

(AP Photo/Tyler Kaufman)

CB Kristian Fulton, LSU

Aqib Talib is old and Xavien Howard is in legal trouble. He’s a clean prospect and can help a secondary right away. I don’t know if I see star but I do see a good piece.

19. Las Vegas Raiders (Bears)

Sooner Sports

LB Kenneth Murray, OKLA

Murray is a fast and physical linebacker who flies around the field and is always around the ball. He is put together well and a good tackler. Raiders drafting the WR-LB combo with their 2 draft picks are a win-win for this organization.

20. Jacksonville Jaguars (Rams)

Hogs Haven

CB Trevon Diggs, BAMA                                   

A very physical corner but Diggs is not the Jalen Ramsey replacement, he has above-average instincts but is not a natural defender converting to a CB not too long ago, but he could sneak into the first round because of his skill set.

21. Philadelphia Eagles

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

WR Laviska Shenault, COL

WR is the biggest need for the Eagles. Definitely can be a #1 WR with Carson Wentz – has the speed to be a big playmaker year 1. With all those injuries he can be poised for a BIG year.

22. Buffalo Bills

Bleacher Report

DE Yetur Gross-Matos, PSU

The defense is getting older, Gross-Matos has fallen but maybe the combine is what he needs to insert his name higher in the draft. He’s a good run defender and an improving pass-rusher. Jerry Hughes over 30 getting the replacement could be the selection.

23. New England Patriots

AP

IOL Cesar Ruiz, MICH

He just seems like a Patriot, he’s a lineman who can play at Center or at either guard position. He is a well-balanced blocker in the ground game and in pass protection which can help them get the ground game going and buy time for WRs to get open.

24. New Orleans Saints

House of Sparky

WR Brandon Aiyuk, ASU

The Saints need to help Michael Thomas; Aiyuk has the speed and ability to make it a dangerous duo. Scouts believe that Aiyuk was better than N’Keal Harry, if Harry was a 1st rounder so can Aiyuk.

25. Minnesota Vikings

Buffalo Fanatics

CB Jeff Gladney, TCU

Rhodes is closed now and Waynes should be on the way out tool. Gladney has real cover skills to run with receivers and prevent separation and can be lined up as an outside or inside corner.

26. Miami Dolphins (Texans)

247Sports

RB DeAndre Swift, UGA

Swift ran well for Georgia showing his speed, vision, cutting ability, and versatility. He’s a 3 down back and Dolphins doesn’t have a running back on the roster of his caliber.

27. Seattle Seahawks

CollegeFootballTalk

DT Ross Blacklock, TCU

Could be a one hit wonder but 6’4 and 305 Seattle could fall in love with him and drafting at this spot. Blacklock does have medical issues.

28. Baltimore Ravens

Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

DE AJ Epenesa, IOWA

Ravens have to replace Judon if he leaves in FA, Epenesa at 6’6 280 he has all the power from the edge.  Epenesa can play the solid base end on 4-3 defense but is best suited as a five-technique end in a 3-4.

29. Tennessee Titans

Pro Football Network

OT Josh Jones, HOU

Probably will lose Conklin to FA, fill the void at tackle with Josh Jones who has good size with length, athleticism and agility. Not an overpowering athlete, but he has some functional strength to manipulate and lean on defenders.

30. Green Bay Packers

Gang Green Nation

WR Jalen Reagor, TCU

Same reason with the Saints taking a WR, Devante Adams needs help. Reagor has the ability to take the top off the defense, he’s a speed demon and a home run hitter for the NFL that coaches drool over.

31. San Francisco 49ers

Inside the Star

S Antoine Winfield Jr. MINN

His dad was a great corner, his son can potentially be a great safety. A couple injuries but he’s another jack-of-all- trades who’s a ball hawk safety. Continuing to add help on that defense is the smart thing to do, John Lynch will love him.

32. Kansas City Chiefs

NJ.com

LB Patrick Queen, LSU

The Chiefs has to hit on draft picks due to the Mahomes contract that will follow. With that being said the Chiefs should select someone who can be a star on a cheap deal. Enter Patrick Queen. Queen is a fast linebacker who can go sideline-to-sideline and has three-down starting potential for the next level. He has special speed and athleticism that make him a valuable linebacker in pass coverage

Myrick’s 1.0 Mock Draft

The 2019 NFL regular season is in the books, and much has changed when it comes to the 2020 NFL Draft. The thought was that the Miami Dolphins would be tanking yet they find themselves not in the top 5 after defeating the Patriots in week 17 but still lead with three picks in the first round. Jaguars picked up another first round pick trading away Jalen Ramsey while the Las Vegas Raiders, yea Las Vegas, has two picks with one coming from Chicago who thought to be in the playoffs.

Originally, I wanted to give every team Chase Young and since August that has not changed. The only thing different is the rise of the QB Joe Burrow out of LSU, he’s on pace to have the best season ever as a coach, already racking up the Heisman and throwing 7 touchdowns in the College Football Playoffs Semifinals.

Here’s my initial mock draft at how it could play out come April 2020.

1. Cincinnati Bengals

Usatoday.com

The Selection: QB Joe Burrow, LSU

It’s destiny that the LSU Tiger will head for play for the Cincinnati Bengal. He will be a day 1 starter. High hopes for the Bayou Bengal.

2. Washington Redskins

The Selection: EDGE Chase Young, OHST

He will walk and be a stud right away. Pairing him with Swear, Allen and Payne give this one of the best fronts in football with new coach Ron Rivera and DC Del Rio

3. Detroit Lions

Saturdaytradition.com

The Selection: CB Jeffery Okudah, OHST

Lions want to play man and struggle from the secondary this season. Okudah with his long arms, fast feet and closing speed can help him be a strong candidate for DROY immediately.

4. New York Giants

Alabama athletics

The Selection: OT Jedrick Willis, Bama

No need to use a high draft pick on skills position when you need help to protect your investment. So getting a OL is key. I like Willis – he can be dominate when run blocking and can maximize his ability to help Daniel Jones and Barkley.

5. Miami Dolphins

USAtoday.com

The Selection: QB Tua Tagovailoa, Bama

No way he returns to school, he’s in good position to find himself on a solid team. Pairing him with good weapons would help him pick right back up where he left off in Alabama. He’ll declare and go south to Miami. Don’t count out the Dolphins.

6. Los Angeles Chargers

The Draft Network

The Selection: OT Andrew Thomas, UGA

Lets get physical and tough with this pick and whoever Thomas will be blocking for at the Quarterback position the need and fit is here.

7. Carolina Panthers

Hawkeye Sports

The Selection: OT Tristan Wirfs, IOWA

Good in both sets, blocking for Mccaffery in the run game is a priority as well as blocking for whoever is at the helm for QB next season. He has good control to his game and could play either tackle spot.

8. Arizona Cardinals

Sooner Sports

The Selection: WR CeeDee Lamb, OKLA

The ageless, great, and future Hall of Famer Larry will probably retire. CeeDee Lamb has questions for long speed but why not put him in a system where speed wasn’t Larry’s thing. Can be ROY in Kliff system and pairing him back with Kyler Murray is the icing on the cake.

9. Jacksonville Jaguars

Alabama athletics

The Selection: WR Jerry Jeudy, Bama

They retain the staff and will

They retain the staff and will probably keep Minshew. Jags offense can be special with a special WR. Good weapons to put on a show with Fournette, Juedy and Chark Jr.

10. Cleveland Browns

Montgomery Adviser

The Selection: Derrick Brown, AUB

The Browns can get you from the edge consistently once Garrett is reinstated. Imagine pressure up the middle too, and from the best IDL in the class, I mean 6’5 318, he’s a monster and I see superstar.

11. New York Jets

Usatoday.com

The Selection: EDGE A.J. Epenesa, IOWA

Joey Douglas loves big players. Hard to find out as big as Epenesa 6’6 280. All power from the edge here.

12. Las Vegas Raiders

The Selection: LB Isaiah Simmons, CLEM

The leader of a defense Gruden has been looking for. Long arms. Can also cover TEs in man and zone. Potential Defensive nightmare.

13. Indianapolis Colts

NFL mocks

The Selection: WR Tee Higgins, CLEM

Cris Carter always say you should build your WR core like a basketball team. If TY, Pascal are my guards I need a big SF to go along with the TEs. Would’ve seen what Devin Funchess would’ve done in this offense but injuries ended his season early. Tee Higgins and TY can be similar to another former Clemson WR Mike Williams pairing with Keenan Allen. With the right QB watch out for that duo.

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Stampede Blue

The Selection: QB Justin Herbert, ORE

IDL is a need if Suh doesn’t comeback. But, I went QB. Reason being as much the fun rollercoaster ride is watching Jamies Winston there’s no way they keep him for the future. Draft Herbert……he has something in common with Big Ben, Manning and Carson Palmer (who played under Arians) TALL AND BIG ARM. Learning what NOT to do watching Jamies can also help.

15. Denver Broncos

Usatoday.com

The Selection: CB Kristian Fulton, LSU

CB is still a need. Few months ago they wanted to trade Chris Harris. Here’s a good way to bounce back with Fulton. He’s not long but neither is Chris Harris, he’s a clean prospect and can help right away

16. Atlanta Falcons

Pro football rumors

The Selection: CB C.J. Henderson, UF

Falcons need help at CB position. Very athletic good speed to keep up with any type WR and physical toughness. That’s a need for this division with the likes of Michael Thomas, Godwin/Evans and DJ Moore.

17. Dallas Cowboys

The Valley Shook

The Selection: S Grant Delpit, LSU

Trading for Jamal Adams could fix things but how bout getting the safety he played with in college. Delpit is very versatile and that’s what you need from the safety position. Once he sure up his tackling he will be a good player, maybe not Jamal but close.

18. Miami Dolphins (from Steelers)

http://www.si.com

The Selection: EDGE K’Lavon Chaisson, LSU

Got the most important position in football drafting Tua earlier. Here they are with the position that’s supposed to get after guys like Tua. K. Chaisson from LSU is a good pick here. Very versatile playing in any scheme as a 4-3 DE or stand up OLB in a 3-4. Raw but can be a serious problem for opposing teams.

19. Las Vegas Raiders (from Bears)

The Spun

The Selection: WR Henry Ruggs III

Ruggs in space can’t be stopped. Similar to would be his rival in KC with elite Speed in Tyreek hill, could help open up a John Gruden offense. Imagine a Jacobs-Ruggs-Waller combination, that’s a very nice.

20. Jacksonville Jaguars (from Rams)

Bleacher Report

The Selection: EDGE Yetur Gross-Matos

Josh Allen had a very impressive rookie campaign and the Jags should continue in that direction and bring back Sacksonville. Plus, Campbell can’t play forever, can he?

21. Philadelphia Eagles

Draft Wire

The Selection: WR Laviska Shenault Jr. , COLO

Have you seen the injuries to the Eagles offense? Easy to why they would take a WR? He has big play ability from Colorado. Definitely can be a #1 WR with Carson Wentz.

22. Tennessee Titans

The Scorecrow

The Selection: IDL Javon Kinlaw, So. Carolina

My philosophy of a GM is not to pay RBs. Do the Titans sway away from that and draft one? I would say yes but a deep RB class I can’t take one first round. This teams needs IDL up front and that’s J. Kinlaw, a long term answer.

23. Buffalo Bills

247sports.com

The Selection: WR Justin Jefferson, LSU

Did they missed out on the run of WRs? Not even, Justin Jefferson should rise up on draft boards especially after a performance of a lifetime. Big body WR 6’3 190. Just what the doctor order for Josh Allen.

24. Minnesota Vikings

Wisconsin Badgers

The Selection: IOL Tyler Biadasz, WIS

Although everyone assumes a CB will be taken. I won’t go that route. Vikings Rookie center, Bradbury, has looked awful all season. With really only one good draft pick on the Offensive line they need to address the interior of again. Tyler Biadasz is the pick.

25. Miami Dolphins (from Texans)

247sports.com

The Selection: CB Paulson Adebo, Stan

QB, check, Edge rusher, check, dolphins need someone to help Xavier Howard in the secondary. How bout a long, playmaker at the cornerback from Stanford, P. Adebo, who can help in both the passes and run game.

26. Seattle Seahawks

The Athletic

The Selection: OT Alex Leatherwood, Bama

I’ll do anything in my power if it helps Russell Wilson. Easy decision. Let’s help protect him. Alex Leatherwood can help.

27. New England Patriots

Alabama athletics

The Selection: EDGE Terrell Lewis, Bama

Could go so many directions as they need pieces pretty much everywhere and to continue to keep Gilmore the best CB in the league lets get him some help up front to get after the QB. Terrell Lewis from Alabama looks the part of a NFL rusher with his length and size. Saban and Bill talk about Bama players to one another. I know Saban has sent plenty of tape.

28. Green Bay Packers

Athletique.com

The Selection: WR K.J. Hamler, PSU

YES, another WR off the board. He gives me hollywood brown vibes. Another player who excelled with Rodgers was Randall Cobb. Hamler speed is top notch can be vital playmaker to continue to help Rodgers as he enters “old man status.”

29. Kansas City Chiefs

CBS Sports

The Selection: RB J.K. Dobbins, OHST

My first RB comes off the board and that is JK Dobbins. He can fit into any system. Andy Reid loves backs who can catch and JK not only can run the ball but can be deadly in the passing game. Matchup nightmare pairing him with Tyreek Hill, Kelce and of course Mahomes.

30. New Orleans Saints

Sooner Sports

The Selection: LB Kenneth Murray, OKLA

K. Murray is very productive with good sideline to sideline range. Would be a steal for a team where their weakness is the middle of the defense.

31. San Francisco 49ers

Alabama Athletics

The Selection: S Xavier McKinney, Bama

Wont be here come April. But since we don’t predict trades — they should address the secondary. The question is a safety versus CB. I would compare McKinney from Bama as a Minkah Fitzpatrick type. He can play either safety spot at a high level. Versatility is my favorite word. John Lynch will hit another home run with this selection

32. Baltimore Ravens

247sports.com

The Selection: EDGE Julian Okwara, ND

Since the Ravens fixed the CB situation by acquiring Marcus Peters, has solid playmakers on offense, a top 5 OL, there’s nothing really left to do but attack opponents QBs. I went with another edge rusher I’ve liked this season. Okwara from ND. He’s a go getter and fits well with the Ravens.

Why Serbia is Destined To Win Gold

The FIBA World Cup is set to take place in China at the end of next week. The tournament will act as qualification for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo and with the field expanding from 24 teams to 32, it will give more teams more opportunities to make a stronger case.

Qualified Teams for FIBA:

  • 5 Teams From Africa (Angola, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Senegal, Tunisia)
  • 7 Teams From The Americas (USA, Canada, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Dominican Republic, Venezuela)
  • 8 Teams From Asia and Oceania (China, Japan, Iran, Australia, South Korea, Jordan, Philippines, New Zealand)
  • 12 Teams From Europe (France, Germany, Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Poland, Russia, Spain, Turkey, Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania)

So why Serbia? Let’s take a trip down memory lane. In the last World Cup, dating back to 2014, Team USA met Serbia in the World Cup Final in Madrid, Spain. Serbia was dealing with a very difficult group with the likes of powerhouses of Spain, Brazil and France. Serbia did defeat Iran and Egypt but lost to all three teams accumulating 7 points (2 points for wins & 1 point for a lost) and advancing to the next round. In the round of 16, Serbia faced the winner of Group B Greece, who went undefeated knocking off teams like Argentina and Croatia in the process. An impressive 18 point win was the spark they needed. The next round, they faced an opponent they lost to before, Brazil. An eight point lost earlier in the tournament now turned into a 28 point blowout led by Milos Teodosic with 15 points. Serbia made their way to the Final Four of the World Cup. Serbia couldn’t avoid yet another FIBA Powerhouse in France, a familiar opponent from just a few games back. France won the 4th quarter by 3 points and ultimately winning the game 74-73. In the Semifinals, after 2 big wins, this time would be different. Serbia was in control for majority of the game, taking a 14 point lead into halftime, as well as a 15 point lead into the 4th. Serbia hangs on,behind Milos’ 24 points, with a 5 point win making the World Cup Final for the first time since winning Gold in 2002, who went by the country Yugoslavia that grace the names of Vlade Divac, Peja Stojakovic, and Vladmir Radmanovic. The question was who would Serbia be playing in the Finals? Of course that’s not really a question, as Team USA won every game by 20 or more points. This would be the case in the World Cup Final — Team USA won 129-96. Serbia took home Silver.

Nikola Jokic drafted by the Denver Nuggets in 2014, in the 2nd Rd with the 41st pick, with not a lot of expectations turned out to be one of the best picks this decade. In the 2016 Olympics, the world got to see his growth to stardom. Just 2 years removed from the 129-96 lost to Team USA in the World Cup, Serbia find themselves in the same group as them, with 2 other good teams France and Australia. In similar fashion, Serbia lost to Australia and France by 15 and 1 respectively, but what was so shocking is that Serbia almost upset Team USA who hadn’t lost an international game since the assembling of the Redeem Team. With the star studded team that the USA presents, they almost slipped through the cracks and if not for a off the rim shot by Bogdan Bogdanovic (Kings) would have took a L. Either way Jokic put on a show at a very young age — posting 25 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in a nailbiting 94-91 lost.

Serbia still made the final round of 8 with another similar path of 2014 FIBA World Cup. Serbia escaped Croatia, then destroyed Australia, who they once lost to before and yet again find their way in another Final match with the Powerhouse of the USA. Very different outcome this time as USA wiped the floor with them coasting to a 3rd Straight Gold Medal winning by 30, leaving Serbia with another Silver Medal.

Nikola Jokic (Serbia) being guarded by Draymond Green (USA) in the Gold Medal Game

Internationally, basketball is getting better and better with a lot of new countries putting more and more teams in the NBA. Teams like Canada, Australia, Greece are all rising with their new talent. Serbia is right in the mix and with Jokic, arguably being the best big man in the league (averaging 20.1 ppg, 10.8 rpg, and 7.2 apg) has to chance to make a statement this upcoming World Cup. Losing Milos Teodosic would hurt for most teams but with a Top Ten player in the NBA and other NBA talent like Bogdan Bogdanovic and Nemanja Bjelica of the Kings, new Mavericks Center Boban Marjanovic, and former Bucks player Miroslav Raduljica it is easy to see why FIBA World Rankings have them ranked #2 in the World, only behind the United States.

Teammates Bogdan Bogdanovic and Nikola Jokic in an exhibition game

Why do I believe that Serbia will take Gold? Well a lot has to do with their rise as a team but also what Team USA will look like come August 31st. After numerous All Stars dropped out to prepare for the NBA Season, what this USA team lack is an identity. Most times, USA gather the best talent and it can overcome any problems that occurs. Chemistry will play a huge factor for Team USA. While most international countries have been playing together since they were young (Serbia is no different) the United States, with as much talent as we have that’s just hard to do.

Since I’ve been watching international basketball, USA at any given moment has the best player on the court. When USA takeS on Nikola Jokic, this would not be the case. Without a superstar or go to guy as of now, Serbia has the advantages to finally capture Gold.

I’m not the only person who agree. Serbian coach, Aleksandar “Sasha” Djordjevic said in a interview, “Let’s let them play their basketball and we will play ours and if we meet, may God help them.” Sasha has shown no sympathy for “the Americans”, as he referred to them in his interview, claiming this is what happens to most European teams.

With plenty of teams and opportunities, this very well may be Serbia’s chance at obtaining Gold. Look for Nikola Jokic and Co. to finally get the job done and win it all.

Keven’s Keys To Success: Fantasy Football

The best season is finally here, Fantasy Football. Fantasy Football has opened many doors because now you’re not just a fan of the team you enjoy watching on Sundays but now you’re a fan of the game and other players. I’m a Vikings fan but guess who I love? I love Davante Adams for the Packers and I love Kenny Golladay for the Lions. To celebrate the best time of the year with you all I want to give my 5 keys to success.

WR #17 Devante Adams, GB
  1. Know the players, know the game, know the rules. So you asked me how do you do that? Simple, Mock drafts. You should do mock drafts over and over and over again to be completely comfortable knowing where guys are coming off the board. You should also know their Average Draft Position or ADP and you MUST find ways to manipulate the draft.
  2. You should know the format: PPR (points per reception), Half PPR 2 QB leagues, SuperFlex (QB,RB,WR,TE) or Double Flex , how many Running Backs or Wide Receivers are in the starting lineup — that can change the values for different players.
  3. During the Draft, Draft who you want but remember to Draft around their ADP. If they won’t come back to you by your next selection then it is not a Reach. Please, I beg you, wait til the last two rounds to select defense and Kickers — Build your team with depth.
  4. Don’t draft a QB or TE high. Quarterbacks touch the ball every play and dictate where the ball goes and for Tight Ends sometimes they’re asked to block depending on the scheme and not always available to give you points.
  5. After your team is finalized, let’s talk about Trading. I believe I am an elite trader, some would say a Master. Knowing when to Buy High or Sell Low is how you become a master trader. Continuous improvement is what you’re striving for. You don’t have to trade every week but if you’re not getting better then why are you playing? The key is knowing how to make someone say yes. For Example: Someone is struggling with Running Backs, this your time to pounce. Someone loses their QB? Time to pounce. There are — always opportunities in Fantasy Football that you must take advantage. When the time comes, you have to use it.
Trading for D. Adams early in the season

Want more help? Read Matthew Berry’s Draft Day Manifesto

https://www.espn.com/fantasy/football/story/_/page/draftdaymanifesto19/fantasy-football-draft-day-manifesto-how-draft-your-fantasy-football-team-matthew-berry-way