Welcome to the Monday edition of the Pick Six newsletter.
I'm going to start here by wishing my dad a happy birthday. Since I'll probably forget to call and/or text him, a newsletter shoutout will have to do. My dad spent 14 years in the NFL with 13 of those coming in Cincinnati, so if you need someone to blame for my blatant homer takes on the Bengals, he's definitely the one you want to blame. Not only is my dad still the Bengals' all-time leading scorer, but he also holds the NFL record for most overtime field goal attempts without a miss. He also had a career field goal percentage of 81.8% in the postseason, which is higher than Adam Vinatieri, Justin Tucker and Hall of Famer Morten Andersen.
Now that the birthday wishes are out of the way, let's get to the rundown.
As always, here's your weekly reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the newsletter. All you have to do is click here and then share the link.
1. Today's show: Monday Mailbag!
During the NFL offseason, we like to spice things up each week on the Pick Six Podcast by adding a listener mailbag every Monday.
Our mailbag episodes are pretty simple: We read listener questions during the show and then answer as many of those questions as possible. Questions can be about literally anything. I mean, I'm pretty sure there was one time when someone asked if eating Outback Steakhouse counts as eating real Australian food, so if we'll answer that question, trust me when I say we'll answer almost anything.
Anyway, if you want to submit a question, all you have to do is go to Apple Podcasts (click here) and leave a five-star review that includes your question.
Here's one question that Ryan Wilson and I answered in today's mailbag (We kicked Will Brinson to the curb, so he wasn't on today's show):
Q: How crazy would it be for the Buccaneers to take a QB in the draft this year? Most of the quarterbacks are considered projects and who better to learn from than Tom Brady. Not saying their main goal is to get a QB, but if one fell to them, is it crazy to take one in the first round?
A: I don't think it would be that crazy for the Bucs to grab a QB, but I do think they might be hesitant to do it and that's because they just spent a second-round pick on a quarterback LAST YEAR (Kyle Trask). That being said, if they feel highly about one of the top quarterbacks in the draft and one of those top quarterbacks falls all the way down to them at No. 27 overall, then I'd at least think about grabbing a QB.
The fact of the matter is that the Buccaneers don't have much time left with Tom Brady -- this will likely be his final year with the team -- and they're going to soon need a QB and if you feel comfortable with taking a Kenny Pickett, Malik Wallis, Sam Howell, Desmond Ridder or Matt Corral, then I'd go ahead and grab him. Let him duke it out with Trask for the starting job in 2023 and make the loser walk the plank.
That being said, if I were the Bucs, I wouldn't pick a QB this year. With Brady's time in Tampa running out, you need a player who will help you this year and a quarterback definitely isn't going to help you on the field this year.
Anyway, to listen to the rest of the mailbag, be sure to click here. You can also watch today's episode on YouTube by clicking here.
2. Dwayne Haskins tragically dies at age 24
In a stunning tragedy that took place over the weekend, Dwayne Haskins died on Saturday morning after being hit by a dump truck while walking on an interstate in Florida. Haskins had been in Fort Lauderdale to work out with several of his Steelers teammates.
One thing that's not clear right now is why Haskins was walking on the interstate just before 7 a.m. The Florida Highway Patrol is still investigating the situation and here's the information that they've released so far (via the Miami Herald and the FHP):
- According to authorities, Haskins was walking on the interstate for "unknown reasons." There was some speculation that he was having car issues, but that hasn't been substantiated yet. One witness told NBC Miami that he didn't see a broken down car on Haskins' side of the interstate.
- Haskins was attempting to walk on the westbound lanes of I-595. Not only is that a four-lane highway, but visibility was low because sunrise wasn't until 7 a.m. on Saturday (The accident is believed to have happened around 6:37 a.m.)
- The vehicle that hit Haskins was a dump truck. The driver of the vehicle has been cooperative with authorities.
With the investigation still underway, it's not clear when we'll get more answers about the situation. However, the Herald did note that the report from the Florida Highway Patrol will likely be released in 60 to 90 days.
Remembering Haskins: Players, coaches and former teammates mourn loss
Haskins was only in the NFL for three years, but you can tell he was well liked by nearly everyone he came in contact with around the league. Following his death on Saturday, there was an outpouring of condolences on social media as players, coaches and former teammates tried to come to grips with what happened.
- Steelers players in shock. Steelers star T.J. Watt and quarterback Mason Rudolph were among the many Pittsburgh players who shared their feelings on Twitter. Retired QB Ben Roethlisberger also shared a statement about his affinity for Haskins. One of the more emotional reactions on Twitter came from Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool, who had been in Florida with Haskins on Friday.
- Former Ohio State teammates pay their respects. During a highly successful 2018 season with the Buckeyes, Haskins threw 50 touchdown passes, which is a big reason why he ended up finishing third in the Heisman voting that year. Many of Haskins' former OSU teammates, including Colts receiver Parris Campbell and Rams safety Jordan Fuller, shared their sadness on Twitter. Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, who was teammates with Haskins for one season at OSU, also sent a tweet, "Tough to find the words… you will be missed," Burrow wrote.
- NFL coaches pay their respects. A multitude of NFL coaches also shared their grief on Twitter. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, Commanders coach Ron Rivera and Vikings coach Kevin O'Connell all wrote about how special Haskins was as a person (O'Connell was Haskins' offensive coordinator in 2019 while they were both in Washington).
If you want to read more about everyone's memories of Haskins, be sure to click here.
3. Walmart heir expected to make huge bid on Broncos
If you've ever wanted to be an NFL owner, you'll have a chance to buy a team this offseason and that's because the Denver Broncos are for sale. According to the New York Post, the team has set April 15 as the deadline for opening bids and when that deadline hits, the team is expecting to receive a monstrous bid from Walmart heir Rob Walton.
Here's what we know about the situation:
- Walton is expected to make an astronomical bid. According to the Post, the Broncos won't be accepting any bids less than $4 billion, but that won't be a problem for Walton, who is planning to bid between $4.5. billion and $5 billion. If that happens, it would smash the American record for most money ever paid for a sports team in the U.S. The record is currently held by the Nets, who sold for $2.35 billion in August 2019.
- Walton has the funds to outbid anyone. According to Forbes, Walton has a net worth of $65 billion, which makes him the 19th richest person in the WORLD. If he buys the Broncos, not only would Walton instantly become the NFL's richest owner, but he'd have a higher net worth than the NFL's six richest owners COMBINED. Panthers owner David Tepper currently has the highest net worth in the NFL at $16.7 billion.
- One Walmart heir is already indirectly involved with NFL ownership. Rob Walton's cousin, Ann Walton Kroenke, is the husband of Rams owner Stan Kroenke. If you're wondering about the family tree there, Rob is the son of Walmart founder Sam Walton, who is Ann's uncle. Ann's father, Bud, was Sam's brother and a co-founder of Walmart.
If the 77-year-old Walton is intent on buying the team, there's a good chance no one is going to be able to outbid him and that's because he's one of the richest people in the world.
The sale of the Broncos isn't going to happen overnight, but we will almost certainly know who the next owner is going to be before the start of the 2022 season. If anyone wants to start a GoFundMe to purchase the Broncos, let me know and I might chip in.
4. NFL Mock Draft: A three-round mock draft that covers 105 picks
Ryan Wilson didn't return any of my texts over the weekend and now I know why: It's because he was working on a monstrous mock draft.
Wilson has done plenty of one-round mock drafts and he even recently completed a two-round mock draft, but today's mock is his biggest one yet: It consists of all 105 picks through the first three rounds. Although part of me wants to break down all 105 picks here, we're not going to do that, because it would take me 11 hours and today's newsletter wouldn't be released until tomorrow and no one wants that.
Instead of looking at all 105 picks, we're going to take a look at where Wilson has the top five quarterbacks going:
43rd overall: Falcons select Sam Howell (North Carolina)
90th overall: Titans select Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati)
Ridder is definitely the most polarizing quarterback in the draft. Some projections have him going late in the first round while most other mock drafts have him going in the second or third round.
By the way, if you want to see how the other 100 picks turned out in Wilson's three-round mock, be sure to click here.
5. NFL Insider Notes: Details on a possible Baker Mayfield trade and how it might impact the rest of the league
With Deshaun Watson now in Cleveland, Baker Mayfield has basically been an afterthought over the past few weeks. Although Mayfield is still officially on the Browns roster, don't expect that to be the case much longer. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora is fully expecting the quarterback to be traded at some point over the next few weeks in a deal that very well could come around the draft.
If Mayfield does get traded:
- Don't look for the Browns to get much in return. The Browns might have to pay some of Mayfield's salary. From JLC, "It wouldn't shock me if the Browns end up assuming $5 million or more of Mayfield's salary to facilitate a solid return, as this is the team that once essentially paid $16 million (via assuming Brock Osweiler's bloated contract) for a draft pick."
- One team makes the most sense. The reason the Browns can't ask for much is because there's not much of a market for Mayfield. According to JLC, only one team makes sense for a deal: The Seahawks. From JLC, "Seattle makes the most sense to me for Mayfield, still. The Seahawks are used to having a QB without ideal size, they don't mind big personalities, Mayfield has been to the playoffs, and I don't see Pete Carroll wanting a true re-boot under center."
- Three teams that could take a QB in the top 10. If the Seahawks make a trade for Mayfield, that leaves three teams that could still take a QB in the top 10. From JLC, "At this point I keep coming back to the Falcons and Panthers as teams that will take a QB in the top 10 -- and possibly the Lions, too, despite Dan Campbell's protestations."
6. Rapid-fire roundup: Commanders re-sign their kicker
It was a wild weekend in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you.
- Joey Slye lands two-year deal from Commanders. After a 2021 season where Slye didn't miss a single field goal for Washington, the Commanders decided to reward him with a two-year deal. According to NFL.com, the contract is worth up to $5 million and includes $2 million in guarantees.
- Ravens re-sign Calais Campbell. The defensive end will be returning Baltimore for at least two more seasons after signing a two-year deal over the weekend that could pay him up to $16.5 million. The 35-year-old is one of the longest-tenured defensive players in the NFL. The six-time Pro Bowler has been in the league since 2008, when the Cardinals selected him in the second-round of the NFL Draft.
- USFL will be introducing some major technological innovations. Despite being a multi-billion dollar entity, the NFL still uses chains to measure whether a team got a first down. When the USFL kicks off this weekend it will be going a different route. The new league will put a chip in each football and use lasers to measure for first downs. You can read all about the technology by clicking here.
- Deshaun Watson civil cases won't go to trial during 2022 season. Although Watson wasn't indicted by a grand jury, the QB is still facing 22 lawsuits that could potentially lead to a suspension in 2022. However, Watson did get some good news this week. According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, none of the 22 civil cases will be going to court during the season. Tony Buzbee, who represents the 22 plaintiffs, told the Plain Dealer that if he can't get the cases to trial by July 2022, then he'll wait until March 2023.
- Bills officially get $600 million in stadium money from state of New York. The Buffalo Bills are officially getting a new stadium. The Bills were promised $600 million by the state of New York, but before that could happen, the state legislature had to approve it and that approval came over the weekend.
- Longtime Cowboys running back coach passes away. Former NFL player and Cowboys running backs coach, Gary Brown, passed away over the weekend. The 52-year-old died on Sunday due to complications from cancer. Brown spent seven seasons coaching the Cowboys running backs (2013-19) and in that time, he coached three 1,000-yard rushers. Brown also spent eight seasons in the NFL, playing for the Oilers, Chargers and Giants. His best season came in 1993 when he rushed for 1,002 yards for the Oilers. His 5.1 yards per carry that season ranked second in the NFL behind only Emmitt Smith (5.3).