some people Get Christmas chocolate From ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Others get articles blatantly intended to advance their future financial interests.
This one appeared earlier this morning. Citing unnamed sources (in another meaningthe player’s agent), informs Shifter that the Ravens are the quarterback Tyler Huntley Do Fourth alternate to the AFC Pro Bowl – One place behind Ravens starter Lamar Jackson.
The article includes this inaccurate sales pitch: “Huntley is slated to be a free agent this offseason and will continue to try Saturday to prove his worth to Baltimore and other teams. Should some of their best quarterbacks come back and Huntley ends up going to the Pro Bowl, his value could be boosted.” Off-season even more.
First of all, there is no Pro Bowl, just a made-for-TV series of events. It’s hard to see how Huntley’s value as a footballer would be in any way “boosted” if he were invited to take part in a host of non-football things.
Second, and much more important, Huntley wont Be a free agent after the season, not in the way that term is always used. Will be restricted Free agent. This is a very big difference. The Ravens would be able to apply a tender offer that would qualify a team for a first-round pick as compensation, if the Ravens did not match the offer sheet Huntley was getting from another team. Rarely does a player change teams via restricted free agency.
Third, how did Huntley end up as the fourth alternate? Schefter notes that Huntley finished above the Titans quarterback Ryan TannehillRaiders quarterback Derek Carrand Patriots quarterback Mac Jones.
Again, how could that be? Huntley did not play until December 4, the game during which Jackson suffered a knee injury. And while some players get votes based solely on reputation, how will Huntley get enough support from fans, players, and coaches to finish seventh among all quarterbacks in the AFC?
The three AFC Pro Bowl quarterbacks are Josh Allen of the Bills, Patrick Mahomes of the chiefs, and Joe Burrow from Bengals. Two alternates landed ahead of Jackson and Huntley. One of them is said to be a Dolphin quarterback Toa Tagovailoa.
If the other is a Chargers quarterback Justin HerbertThis meant that Huntley finished as a higher performer than the Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence. If the other was Lawrence, that meant Huntley finished higher than Herbert.
Shifter ignores this point, perhaps because it makes the report look unreliable. In the absence of someone on record to list the full list of Pro Bowl replacements, many would choose to be extremely skeptical of the claim that Huntley finished fourth. Even if such a list were submitted, many would choose to ask if there was some kind of deception involved in the vote-gathering and tabulation process.
For example, Huntley’s agent may have launched secret (and perfectly legitimate) efforts to get friends, relatives, etc. to fill the ballot box for Huntley. Assuming that the coaches and players only name three players on their ballots, it wouldn’t take much for the one-third fan vote to push a specific player into the alternate fourth position. Really, how many quarterbacks other than Allen, Mahomes, and Burroughs would be three quarterbacks picked by anyone who knows anything about football?
Bottom line – this just doesn’t pass the scent test. Regardless, even if the report is 100 percent accurate, you will any NFL decision makers suddenly decide Huntley is someone their team should pursue, simply because Schefter’s early morning Christmas bonus contains flaws in fact and logic?
At least the chocolate is real.
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