Former NFL star Jason Bell provides his thoughts on the latest events in the National Football League as Super Bowl LVII edges closer...
49ers’ bad luck continues
I can’t remember a team that has had such bad luck at the quarterback position like the San Francisco 49ers have had.
They’d already gone through two, so to lose Brock Purdy to a bad injury early on and then for fourth choice Josh Johnson to be ruled with concussion is crazy.
Purdy had been superb in all of his starts before that, so it was just such a shame the game was basically done when he got hurt.
You want to see every team at full strength, especially at this stage of the season, but credit to the Philadelphia Eagles for seizing the opportunity.
Every year officials get flack
There was plenty made of the standard of officiating in the two NFL Championship games and in all honesty it’s just one of those things that happens every year.
The officiating is always questioned, it’s nothing new, so I’m not surprised people have spoken up.
There were some calls that could be questioned, no doubt, but these things swing in roundabouts, and I think a lot of it is just frustration that it’s gone against someone’s team.
If there are any significant issues then it always gets fixed ahead of the new season, and I’m sure this year will be no different.
Mahomes proved he’s got guts as well as class
If you look at the quarterbacks of both the Kansas City Chiefs and the Eagles, these are two guys that are true leaders. It’s not because of them being the loudest person in the room, it’s because of the respect they demand.
You see the way Patrick Mahomes played against the Cincinnati Bengals, even with that injury, the team rallied around him as much as possible to help, but he still took over and did what we know he can do.
Everybody was watching him, doubting him and his mobility, but he got through it. In the second half, he was grimacing from the pain in his ankle, but he stayed out there and made plays.
That’s what a leader in the NFL is – somebody who plays through anything and does anything to help their team. He’s not only the best player in that position, but he’s the best leader too and he should be applauded for that.
Mahomes v Burrow a rivalry to savour
Josh Allen will definitely have something to say about it because he’s that good, but personally I really want to keep seeing Patrick Mahomes versus Joe Burrow.
These two teams don’t like each other, but you can’t have a rivalry between two good teams without two legitimate stars at the quarterback position because that’s what makes it.
Both are amazing players and I’m sure we’ll see them battling it out for many years to come. I can’t wait!
Chiefs still have my vote, just!
As you get closer to the Super Bowl, it’s always hard to pick a winner because the two best teams are the only ones still standing.
You always lean to the team you picked at the start of the season, but this Eagles team is really good. Jalen Hurts has been playing brilliantly and is rightfully a serious MVP candidate, but I think at the moment I’m still just with Kansas City.
I just think the Mahomes factor is so hard to go against. He’s still playing lights-out football despite being injured and if the defense can hold up and give him enough opportunities to take his offence down the field, I think they’ll just have enough.
Jackson will be a Raven next season
I can’t see Lamar Jackson moving on from the Ravens as he has the franchise tag and I think they’ll use it. That’s unless they franchise him and then trade him, but I don’t see that happening.
Will he get what he wants? I’m not sure, but I think he’ll be there next season.
He can certainly take the Ravens to a Super Bowl. He’s got the skillset and when you watch him on the field, he can legitimately do anything. It’s about putting the right talent around him and I don’t think they’ve done that as well as they could have.
When he’s on, he’s probably one of the best 10 offensive players in the league.