What would Vince Lombardi make of Seattle, which has turned to meditation to nurture the well-being of its players? Or Jacksonville, which has embraced hard-core analytics to find that increasingly elusive edge? Or RG3 and the read-option; or Joe Flacco and the Ravens’ new aerial ways; or another certain Lambeau Legend, who by the end of his sixth season as starter, will have thrown the ball more times than Bart Starr did in his 16-year career? Maybe Lombardi would curse up one of his famous storms over a league that’s been renovated beyond his recognition. Or maybe not. After all, quitters never win, and winner never fail to install a no-huddle, quintuple read-option, wild Tebow offense – if it works.
ESPN The Magazine’s NFL Preview on newsstands Friday, August 23, will tackle a variety of issues surrounding the NFL with features such as:
Meditation? Yoga? No yelling or swearing? The Mag’s Alyssa Roenigk writes that Russell Wilson and the Seahawks believe their kinder, gentler philosophy is the future of football.
Go to http://es.pn/16cqrSo for a photo gallery from Russell Wilson’s cover shoot and http://es.pn/16w3SvI for behind-the-scenes video where he discusses the upcoming season, the importance of being a Seattle Seahawk, and his motivation as a quarterback
Every day is Tuesday
For Derrick Mason, being retired from the NFL isn’t about battling Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy(CTE) or dealing with bad investments. He’s just a man struggling to fill his days. By Tim Struby
The Jacksonville Jaguars are leading an analytics boom in the NFL with a new head coach who finally takes the number crunchers seriously. By David Fleming
Joe Flacco thinks you’re boring
Fiery. Outspoken. Innovative. The Ravens QB knows he’s none of these things. But what makes him seem ordinary actually makes him special. By Kevin Van Valkenburg
And the server says …
This time of year, everyone has a theory—about the players who’ll matter most, the games that’ll go to the wire and the team that’ll exit New Jersey with the Lombardi Trophy. So Football Outsiders mined its 22 seasons of data to forecast each team’s offensive and defensive performance. Pro-Football Reference used its Approximate Value metric to highlight a non-QB MVP, while our resident Football Scientist, KC Joyner, studied the bad decisions of each signal-caller. Finally, Pro Football Focus performed its algorithmic gymnastics to predict the scores of all 256 regular-season games and our playoff bracket. The only theory left to test: Does champagne taste sweeter at Mile High or the Meadowlands?
Beyond the NFL
Also in the latest issue of ESPN The Magazine is Howard Bryant’s column on the Bryan Brothers, and as they reach for history at the US Open the twins will make you forget all about the sorry state of American men’s tennis. Also in this issue, senior writer Wright Thompson explores wrestling’s most famous winner in “The losses of Dan Gable,” and how after a lifetime of battles, he takes on a final struggle: To save his sport.