Even if Thomas’ musical talents are more virtuoso than just another athlete trying to be a rapper, the lifestyle is viewed as a distraction. It causes decision-makers to question whether a player wants to be a rapper or a football player.
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He cooperated with the compliance office to remain eligible without profiting off his likeness. He used Major Nine as his rap name, a nickname that started as Nine-Nine in high school because of his jersey number but evolved in college. He used his Twitter account solely to promote his music and couldn’t post his songs on streaming sites for profit. He says he was prohibited from tweeting about Miami or posting pictures wearing Miami attire on that account.
They were trying to take away my love, football. You can’t take that away from me. If somebody takes football away from me right now, Imma find my way back around it. Imma be coaching, doing something.
Losing Avery Williamson in free agency to the Jets puts new Titans head coach Mike Vrabel a bit behind the eightball when it comes to the kinds of linebackers Tennessee has preferred over the last few years. Williamson is a heady player in space with the ability to blitz from multiple gaps, and he would often pair with outside linebacker Brian Orakpo to create some of the most effective A-gap blitz packages in the NFL.
Based on his college tape, Leighton Vander Esch would be a perfect replacement and may be able to do even more than Williamson over time. An outstanding pass defender who seems to instinctively understand the routes he’s facing, Vander Esch would give the Titans a ton of help in short to intermediate coverage. He’s also a quick blitzer who sees and analyzes gaps quickly, and while he may have a bit of work to do as a run-stopper, he’s got the skill set that defines the modern inside linebacker.
The Falcons have a need for a strong, run-stopping defensive tackle to pair with Grady Jarrett and his penetrative skills, and head coach Dan Quinn is one of the league’s more creative coaches when it comes to assembling lines. So, don’t automatically assume that, just because they’re replacing Dontari Poe, they’re going to go with a 340-pound nose tackle. Quinn recently said, per the team’s official side, that Authentic D.J. Augustin Jersey he’s intrigued by the depth of this tackle class.