Well hello, everyone, and happy Wednesday. John Breech is taking yet another one-day vacation, and sources say he's testing out new tiger-striped swimsuits this time. Meanwhile, you've got me, Cody Benjamin, to guide you through the latest from around the NFL.
This is the Pick Six newsletter. Now let's get to it. (And please, do yourself a favor and make sure you're signed up to receive this newsletter every day! You don't want to miss our daily offerings of everything you need to know around the NFL.)
We've got more top 10 position rankings, Browns QB news, and much more:
- Today's show: Ranking the best O-linemen of 2022
Quarterbacks, receivers and other big-play positions get all the love. But everything starts in the trenches. That's why Jeff Kerr was the special guest for Wednesday afternoon's "Pick Six NFL Podcast," joining the show to break down his ranking of the top 10 offensive linemen for the 2022 season. Some highlights:
- Tyron Smith hasn't played a full season since 2015, managing just 13 games over the last two years. But that's not stopping Kerr from crowning the Cowboys veteran one of the best tackles in the league, specifically No. 2 behind only Trent Williams.
- As for Williams, Kerr doesn't see anyone coming close to unseating the 49ers star as the NFL's best tackle. Williams is getting better with age, he argues, and couldn't have found a better match than Kyle Shanahan's offense.
- Longtime Eagles center Jason Kelce ranks No. 3 on Kerr's rundown of the top interior linemen, but he's also "on the fast track to the Pro Football Hall of Fame" as one of the NFL's top run blockers at the second level.
Catch the full episode (and subscribe for all kinds of daily NFL talk) right here.
2. Commanders extend Terry McLaurin for up to $71M
One of the NFL's remaining big-name holdouts came to a sudden end Tuesday, when the Commanderson a three-year extension worth up to $71 million. The Ohio State product, coming off back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons, skipped voluntary workouts and mandatory minicamp while approaching a contract year. Now, the former third-round draft pick will stay in Washington through 2025, earning as much as $23.6M per year on his new deal. That total would make him one of the five highest-paid wideouts in the game.
3. Projecting when rookie QBs will debut in 2022
Six different rookie QBs started at least one game in 2021. So which of this year's freshman signal-callers will get work under center, and how soon can we expect to see them? Draft expert Josh Edwards projected if -- and when -- five of the top 2022. Here's a sneak peek at his forecast:
- Kenny Pickett (Steelers): The most logical position for Pickett to be thrust into the starting lineup is Week 10 at home against the New Orleans Saints. The latter half of the schedule features a game against every team in the division, including the Ravens twice, as well as the Panthers and Falcons.
- Desmond Ridder (Falcons): There is not an obvious point in Atlanta's schedule to play Ridder but Week 15 against the Saints could be an option. The Falcons finish the season against the Saints, Ravens, Cardinals and Buccaneers. It is a very difficult stretch but long enough to inform the team and short enough to not break Ridder's confidence if it goes poorly.
- Malik Willis (Titans): The AFC South franchise has aspirations of contending this season and that plan can only come together with Ryan Tannehill under center. Tannehill is likely to start this season in its entirety and then the team will re-assess following the season unless it goes south quickly.
4. Browns QB drama: Watson fallout, Mayfield speaks
The QB position is always full of drama, but that's especially the case in Cleveland. Here are some of the latest updates:
- ? The NFL is reportedly pushing for a lengthy ban, so we explored all the possibilities -- whether Watson is likely to get his suspension reduced, which alternatives the Browns could have at QB in 2022, and more.
- : The former No. 1 pick is leaving the door ever so slightly open for reconciliation, but it's apparent both he and Cleveland are still planning to part ways.
5. Ranking top D-linemen: Aaron Donald reigns supreme
Turns out Jeff Kerr didn't just rank the best offensive linemen in the NFL. He also sorted through the, identifying the elite starters both off the edge and in the trenches. Here's a look at his top five for each spot:
- Aaron Donald (Rams)
- Cameron Heyward (Steelers)
- Chris Jones (Chiefs)
- Jeffery Simmons (Titans)
- Jonathan Allen (Commanders)
6. Rapid-fire roundup: Edelman comeback, Eagles an 'all-star team'
Hungry for more headlines? You came to the right place:
- : He's 'building (the) trust of the team'
- : Apparently he's still scared of Bill
- : Philly is feeling good for 2022
- : A fascinating story from a legend
- : She's facing unexpected health issues
- : Jeff Kerr says the Bills and Browns are too high on their own QBs