5 Big Stories in the NFL This Week
The Eagles have been crowned Super Bowl champions and Philadelphia prepares for their victory parade. The NFL officially turned the calendar to the 2018 season on Monday morning. There are still lots of moving parts around the league, so let’s take a look at the “5 Big Stories in the NFL This Week”.
Philly Parade Plans
Thursday is the big day in Philadelphia.
Schools will be closed so that kids can “witness history” during the Eagles’ Super Bowl parade through downtown. The parade will start at 11am eastern at Broad @ Patterson, then head north to the Philadelphia Art Museum. Yes, that’s the museum with the famous steps that Sylvester Stallone scaled in Rocky.
Weather conditions are a big reason the city will hold the parade on Thursday. There’s a rain/snow mix scheduled for Wednesday, but Thursday is supposed to be dry and a balmy 32 degrees. The Eagles have not celebrated a winner since the 1960 NFL Championship Game, so this is a party that’s been 58 years in the making!
Detroit Lions Hire an Aeronautical Engineer as Their New Head Coach
The Lions announced Monday that their new head coach is a former aeronautical engineer…you might know him as the former Patriots defensive coordinator, Matt Patricia. Yes, he’s the dude with the big, furry, black beard who wears his hat backwards on the sideline.
Patricia won three Super Bowl rings as a member of Bill Belichick’s staff, the past six as defensive coordinator. He’s only 43 years old. After graduating with a degree in aeronautical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, he worked as an engineer for two years before going into coaching. He coached in college for two seasons at Amherst, then one at Syracuse before joining the Patriots in 2004. He worked his way up from offensive assistant to assistant line coach, linebackers coach, safeties coach, and ultimately defensive coordinator.
Two years ago in an interview with New England Sports Network, Belichick talked about Patricia: “This guy could probably build a plane and fly it, this guy is really smart, has great recall and a really high IQ level.”
Now Patricia will take over a Lions team that is one of four NFL franchises to never reach a Super Bowl. The other three are Cleveland, Houston and Jacksonville.
Selling Like Hotcakes!
Eagles fans are snatching up Super Bowl Champion memorabilia at record rates. According to Fanatics, overnight sales following the Eagles’ win on Sunday night is 60% higher than last year (when the Patriots claimed their 5th Super Bowl title).
Fanatics also projects that Eagles fans, jubilant over their team’s first Super Bowl win, will sell the second-most championship memorabilia in history, second only to the Chicago Cubs following their 2016 World Series win.
Gronk’s Home Burglarized While He Was at Super Bowl
Adding insult to injury, Patriots star tight end Rob Gronkowski’s home was robbed while he spent last week in Minneapolis preparing for the Super Bowl.
Gronk had a tough week overall. He was recovering from a concussion suffered in the AFC Championship Game and missed practice time. Once cleared through the concussion protocol, he played in Sunday’s game and scored two touchdowns. But the Patriots lost to the Eagles, 41-33. When he got back home Monday afternoon, thieves had taken some valuables from his house which is just a few miles from the Patriots’ home, Gillette Stadium, in Foxborough.
Paul Jasienski via AP
What’s Next on the NFL Calendar?
Now that the Super Bowl is over, officially the league’s new season has begun. Monday was the first day of the NFL’s new year, the day in which teams could start releasing players. The first big name to get cut was Raiders cornerback David Amerson. Here are some other dates in February which are important: February 20th is the first day teams can designate a Franchise or Transition Player. The Cowboys could place a Franchise Tag on defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence as early as February 20th.
February 27th is the first day of the week-long NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, the gathering of more than 300 top college prospects who are hoping to be drafted in April.