USA TODAY Sports NFL columnist Jarrett Bell and NFL reporter Lindsay H. Jones have been polling agents this year to get a sense of how they view the league’s teams, executives and its issues, particularly those linked to labor relations and collective bargaining.
A total of 25 agents responded to a series of questions, with some choosing to abstain to certain portions of the survey. But most did provide opinions when asked which teams were most prepared during free agency, which decision-makers commanded the most respect (and the least), and more. Here is what their answers revealed:
Saints at Vikings
Oct. 28, 8:20 p.m. A rematch of last season’s thrilling divisional round showdown — the so-called Minnesota Miracle, in which Vikes receiver Stefon Diggs won the game on a walk-off 61-yard TD catch after New Orleans safety Marcus Williams failed to tackle him — this figures to be another back-and-forth battle. These are likely playoff teams, so it could have NFC seeding implications once the season wraps up.
Packers at Patriots
Nov. 4, 8:20 p.m. There’s nothing quite like watching the top quarterbacks in the NFL — Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers — battle. Factor in that these are two legitimate Super Bowl contenders who meet only every four years makes it that much more intriguing.
Here are six contenders that must navigate the toughest regular-season schedules in order to make the postseason after the 2018 season. Andy Reid is breaking in new starting quarterback Patrick Mahomes with a brutal stretch early in the season. It starts with the Chargers and Steelers in consecutive road games.
Brandon Marshall isn’t embracing the notion of fellow wide receiver Dez Bryant joining the New York Giants. Marshall, in fact, took to social media to voice his displeasure with Bryant’s comments about possibly suiting up for the Giants. Sorry baby bro no room, Marshall posted on Instagram along with a screenshot of Bryant’s comments. Marshall has since deleted the comment.
Bryant, who was released by the Cowboys last week, was asked about possibly joining the Giants during an interview with Mike Fisher of 105.3 The Fan in Dallas. The Giants, Bryant said, got a hell of a defense, they’re going to pay OBJ (Odell Beckham Jr.), so coming back. Playing with him, Sterling (Shepard), the tight end (Evan Engram), (quarterback Eli) Manning? Crazy…. draft (Penn State running back Saquon Barkley with the No. 2 overall pick)? That’d be crazy! While Bryant included a lot of names in that quote, one that was missing was Marshall.