AFC North; Part 2 in our love/hate series

In our continuing series, we decide which of our top 3 players earned love or disgust. Truthfully, some of these teams must have driven by the loser bench.

Baltimore Ravens

Baltimore Ravens

Shivadas @Shivadas — Love/HateJoe Flacco –I love that he so wants to be “elite” and hate it when he plays that way. I love it, however, that he is definitely not. Danny WoodheadLove – The little engine that could gets a new shot in Baltimore. How long does his body last this year? Terrell SuggsLove – Ferocious attacker who has written his name in the history books. Despite his nastiness, has played in every game of the season 10 times. A true work horse.

Jules @ABroncoNoleHATE: Terrell Suggs, which was tough to pick just one to hate since this whole dang team, has had some nasty players, close your eyes and throw a dart.  A love will be Seminole, Anquan Bolden who was not part of the 2012 team. Love: Steve McNair.

Jason @CaliOrange&BlueLeast fave: Ray Lewis; what a punk, he was way too aggressive and took things too far, his dance is dumb, he got away with murder…pretty much nuff said! Most fave: Jamal Lewis; ran with fire and passion and was damn hard to take down. Brandon Stokley; sure, he’s an idiot on the airwaves, but he was an incredible slot receiver

Stuart @StuTheUKBronoco — Ed Reed LOVE Who doesn’t love Ed Reed? The best safety I’ve seen in their prime. The term ballhawk doesn’t quite do his skillset justice. If you haven’t seen his stat page I recommend it. 9 interceptions in 2004 and 2008 and 8 in 2010 for a safety is phenomenal. Haloti Ngata – LOVE A very dominant defensive tackle/end/nose tackle. Often double-teamed his stats don’t scream out hall of famer, but I really enjoy watching him space eat and cause havoc if you risk only single blocking him. Trevor Pryce – LOVE Very productive defensive end and also back-to-back Superbowl champion with the Broncos. Hard to block he fought for every yard in the trenches and recorded 91 sacks in 187 games. Add 12 forced fumbles and 2 interceptions to his resume and it shows him not a p

Graham @GrahamTiedtke—  Like: Joe Flacco. Flacco is far (FAR) from elite, but I really admire his game. Aside from Steve Smith Sr., he really hasn’t had that great of a receiver core. Love: Jonathan Ogden. Regarded as one of (if not THE) greatest offensive lineman in NFL history. It’s remarkable how there is such a strong human being. Hate: Ray Rice. Another player who had off-field issues. I never really thought Rice was considered one of the best runners in the league.

Kevin @ALLTHINGS18—  Love/Like: Tony Siragusa, just seems like a fun guy that has a ton of stories to sit down and drink a couple of dozen beers with.  Ed Reed, The best Free Safety I’ve ever seen.  Loved watching him play. Hated facing him. We might see him as a HC one day.  Hated/Dislike: Joe Flacco, and part of it isn’t his fault. It’s the NFL’s for sticking his mug up on the front of Mile High for the ’13 opener, and yes it was mocked and that prayer he sent up in the 2012 playoff game will always draw hatred from me.   Bart Scott, simply not good enough to be as mouthy as he is.

Cincinnati Bengals

Jason.Least fave: Boomer Esiason; a cocky QB just never sits well with me, and Boomer exudes cockiness as much now as he did back in his playing days. Marvin Lewis; sure, he’s not a player, but the fact that he’s STILL their head coach means that the Bungles will remain bottom-feeders for the foreseeable future. Chad Johnson; Super talented receiver, celebrated in such fun ways, definitely a joy for me to watch on Sundays

JulesHATE; Chris Collinsworth. Lord that man makes me want to break his voice box. Vontaze Burfict. Pac Man Jones. I could count on one hand the players I like from this dreadful franchise. One of my least liked teams of all. Nasty, nasty, nasty. Seminole, Peter Warrick is the lone guy I LOVE.

Shivadas — Vontaze Burfict – Hate – This penalty-waiting-to-happen has accrued nearly a million dollars in fines in a 6 year career. Has been known as a dirty player since HIGH SCHOOL (!), when he tried to take out fellow 5 star USC commit Matt Barkley’s knees. A.J. Green – Love – Gotta love wide receivers that make video game catches. The frustration of playing against him is overshadowed by his greatness. AJ McCarron – Love/Hate – He is most famous for his girlfriend/now wife whom Brent Musburger ogled over in the 2013 National Championship Game. I’m not sure if I want him to succeed to be famous on his own, or if I want him to stay in his place as runner-up in the family.

Stuart —  TJ HOUSHMANDZADEH – HATE Massively overrated and he also played for the Raiders. His 2001 rookie season was modest and as he progressed through the years he steadily increased his stats both good and bad. My memory of him went quickly form nearly breaking my PC to laughing my nuts off as the camera panned to him after Shayne Graham’s PAT was ruined by a slippy and snowy ball in a 24-23 Broncos victory. Houshmandzadeh scored a touchdown with seconds remaining and as he picked himself up off the snowy turf he did the mile high salute and laughed. Still laughing on the sidelines as the PAT was attempted he went from joy to stunned and I laughed so hard at my screen. 1 word TJ karma. ANDREW WHITWORTH – LOVE An outstanding left tackle. 6 foot 7 and 330 pounds , he is a package on the left side of any line. Multiple pro bowls and all team selections add to his impressive resume. CARSON PALMER – HATE Another in my opinion over hyped player who gets extra hate points for wearing the silver and black of the Raiders. The Bengals, Raiders and Cardinals have collectively paid him over $188 million which bemuses me. He has taken his teams to the playoffs 3 times in 14 seasons and with only 1 win I don’t understand the contracts this guy gets. Hats off to him though, your only worth what someone is prepared to pay you. He must laugh everytime he looks at his bank account as he could possibly be the luckiest man alive.

Graham —  Like: Anthony Munoz. A core piece of the Bengals OL core, Munoz made the pro bowl 11 consecutive years. Have to admire and respect a player who had as much success as Munoz did. Love: AJ Green. Green is a beast at receiver for the Bengals. I rank him 3rd best WR in the NFL today (behind Antonio Brown and Julio Jones). There wouldn’t be much of an offense for the Bengals if it weren’t for AJ Green. Hate: Pacman Jones. If he would stay out of trouble, he would be likeable. I also don’t like how he carries himself on the field.

 Kevin– Love/Like: Carl Pickens, like Herman Moore with the Lions, one of the most underrated receivers  that has played. Never had a Quarterback. Anthony Munoz, a dominating offensive lineman that was fun to watch him dominate moving guys against their will.   Hated/Dislike: Cris Collinsworth, he was a douche when he was on record for loving 14 year old girls in his 20’s, he’s a douche on Sunday Night Football.  Chad Johnson, or whatever he’s calling himself this days.  Not a fan of showboats.  If anyone wants him in Canton, buy him a ticket.

Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns

Jules– LOVE: Fearsome Ozzie Newsome. Not only was he a force as a TE, but I’ve spent some time with him and he’s a gracious man who doesn’t laugh at a female in a football world. He has my heart forever. Love: TJ Ward because now he’s a Bronco. Love; Jim Brown because he was one of the greatest backs to ever play the game and because my grandfather had a drawing he did of him in the Hall of Fame. As more players have been added, the drawing was removed. Note to self, bring birth certificate next time in Canton and ask to see it. Like some teams, their players from the past are far better than ones of the present.

Stuart — Joe Haden – LOVE Outstanding corner. Very loyal to keep playing for the browns despite other teams interested in his services. Electric pace and football smarts like only 1% of the football population he plays man coverage as if he was in the offensive huddle listening to the routes of the number 1 receiver. At only 5 foot 11 he is fearless covering number 1’s and slot guys. Just an outstanding football player. Joe Thomas – LOVE Joe Thomas is the definition of loyal. Hes been a Brown his whole career and like Haden doesn’t want to leave Ohio to play anywhere else. That gets my attention and my upmost respect. The best offensive tackle I’ve ever seen, but the young guys are catching him up. He seems to make the pro bowl every year and with the Browns being the Browns I can imagine him not turning it down due to a Superbowl appearance anytime soon. Josh Gordon – HATE This guy is a straight up fool. All the talent in the world to be better than 80% of the WR’s in the game today and he can’t stop getting suspended for substance abuse. It’s a shame in a way but also how many chances do you need? With Joe Thomas in your locker room there should never be any negativity. I hope Gordon gets the help he requires but hes wasting his talents watching from the sidelines in sweats.

Jason — Cleveland Steamers—Dave Logan; I mean, sure, I never really remember seeing him play, but I love his as our radio guy, so he gets a nod here as a WR. Bernie Kosar; he gets a nod here for giving the Broncos so many good games, of course in which the good guys came out ahead.
TJ Ward; damn we did good poaching him from the Browns, he is such a thumper, and had been a shining spot on some terrible teams.

Graham —  Like: Josh Cribbs. His ability at KR/PR for the Browns is what I admire most about Cribbs. When he got the ball in his hands as a returner, there was always a chance at taking it to the house. Love: Jim Brown. Wow. Brown was an extremely difficult running back to take down back in his days. When you think of the Cleveland Browns, JIM Brown is what always comes to my mind. Hate: Johnny Manziel. Manziel was a must-watch college player for Texas A&M but his off-field issues and poor quarterback play for the Brownies drove him right out the door of the NFL.

Shivadas — Brock Osweiler – Hate – I think all of America, not just Broncos Country, hates him. QB starved Houston couldn’t even stand his stench and paid Cleveland to haul him away in a dump truck to the QB landfill that is the Browns. Joe Thomas – Love – Only offensive lineman to be named to the Pro Bowl in each of his first eight seasons. Enough Said. Jabrill Peppers – Love – I like to see how swiss-army knives are used in the NFL. Should make some impressive stops this year but most excited to see what he can do as a returner.

 Kevin– Love/Like: Bernie Kosar, another one that likely has his share of stories  that would go perfectly with a case of beer or two. Jamal Lewis, he was nearly on my Ravens list. An outstanding back that, was as good as those getting underserved hardware in the 2000’s.  Hate/Dislike: Kellen Winslow Jr. He’s a mother f”ing joke.  Not half the player his daddy was.

 Pittsburgh Steelers

JasonLeast fave: Jerome Bettis; his hype was overrated to me, sure he was tough to take down, but how he got into the HOF before TD is beyond me. Another least fave: Hines Ward; his cockiness made me want to punch him the face, or give him a Talib-poke. Most liked: Kordell Stewart; CU Buff player, very mobile, not particularly accurate but fun to watch when he scrambled.

Shivadas — Ben Roethlisberger – Love/Hate – Pretty conclusive he is a nasty SOB off the field, and on it. Trying to tackle a Sequoia is both fascinating and heartbreaking. TJ Watt – Love – Can he be half as good as his brother? Antonio Brown – Love – Gotta love wide receivers that make video game catches. The frustration of playing against him is overshadowed by his greatness.

Jules— unlike the Ravens and Bengals, this franchise has too many loves. LOVE: Franco Harris . His Immaculate Reception beat the Raiders and they still are pissed to this day. Haha. LOVE Rocky Bleier. His life story is amazing. He is the definition of never, ever give up.  LOVE: Kevin Greene. Harris and Greene played like their abundant hair was on fire. Guys you hated on the field because you knew they were going to mess up your day.

Stuart– Troy Polamalu – LOVE Another loyal player that earns respect from other pro players by his honest hard nosed play on the field. He has very impressive stats for a safety. I personally used to love seeing him flying across the field with his hair escaping from his helmet making heavy but legal hit time and time again. Antonio Brown – LOVE I enjoy a good success story from a low round drafted player. Drafted in the 6th round of the 2010 draft, he’s now the best receiver in the game today, not by much but always my first choice when asked. He can play anywhere do anything and he plays with the attitude of a young kid playing with his family on Thanksgiving. Whenever he gets the ball you draw in extra breathe incase he takes the punt back to the house or he takes a screen the distance. James Harrison – LOVE I call players like James Harrison Marmite – you either love him or hate theres no middle ground. I love him. Unsigned free agent deemed too small and too light to make it and he proved the doubters wrong. Slow starter in his career he suddenly exploded in 2007 with 98 tackles 7 forced fumbles and 8.5 sacks. This season started a stretch of 4 years with combined stats of 378 tackles 25 forced fumbles and 45 sacks. He was clearly a dominant force on the right hand side of the Steelers linebacker corp.

Graham — Like: Antonio Brown. 2nd-best hands in the NFL in my opinion. Antonio Brown is an amazing wide receiver, and it’s fun that he also competes on DWTS. Love: Le’Veon Bell. The most patient running back in the game today, choosing Bell is the easiest decision in this piece. It amazes me how spectacular Bell is behind the line of scrimmage. Hate: Ben Roethlisberger. Big Ben was a great player in his prime, and still is I suppose.

 Kevin– Love/Like: Joe Greene, aka “Mean” Joe Greene, one of the baddest men to ever step foot on an NFL field, the backbone of those 4 Super Bowl  teams from the 70’s and the only member of those teams to date to have his #75 retired. Owner of one of the most iconic commercials ever too.   Jack Lambert, intense, crazed and a bit warped. Just what you want out of a Middle Linebacker. Once showed up wearing a shirt that said F’ing Maniac. I’d believe it. That toothless snarl, added the perfect symbolism.    Hate/Dislike: Terry Bradshaw, benefactor of playing on the best teams, one of a dozen QB’s in the 70’s that would have won 4 Super Bowls with that group. Waste of space broadcaster.   DeAngelo Williams, simply a  “mental midget”.

 

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