Yet the Seattle rotation doesn’t seem to be anywhere near up to snuff. Hernandez, as great as he once was, is now entering his Age 32 season and hasn’t pitched like an ace since 2015. He missed most of last year with shoulder issues. Paxton, as great as he was, missed time with two different muscle strains. The highlight of the rest of the group is Mike Leake, which should say enough.
There were other factors — the offensive line was the healthiest in football that year, to start — but it would be foolish to say Mack didn’t play a major part in pushing the Falcons toward the Super Bowl.
The 49ers have orchestrated some curious re-signings over the past week, notably retaining former Seahawks washout Garry Gilliam to serve as a swing tackle and bringing back the underwhelming Daniel Kilgore on a three-year, $11.8 million deal.
It seemed like general manager John Lynch was setting his sights low in protecting Jimmy Garoppolo, but the Richburg move makes things look much better.
He’ll slot in as the starting center, where he has both the athleticism to excel in a zone scheme and the brains to set and reset protections.
Kilgore will likely move to guard, where he’ll fight with Zane Beadles, Laken Tomlinson and 2016 first-rounder Joshua Garnett for starting work.
“I learned how to be patient,” Acuna said. “I had to learn how to handle things not going my way. It’s tough because I want to be the best. But I have to learn.”
Potentially, he could wait a little longer even if he continues to build on the hype. If Acuna breaks camp on the MLB roster, he would be eligible for free agency after his sixth full season. That would be 2023. However, the Braves could wait until late April or early May to bring him up, meaning Acuna would not be eligible for free agency until after the 2024 season.
The Jets are willing to throw a ton of money at Cousins with hefty guarantees built in, but that won’t matter if Cousins just prefers the Vikings. That’s a possibility, according to SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano.
The Jets are one of the four teams vying for Cousins, according to a report from Adam Schefter.