Rank #1: Jalen Ramsey, Darius Leonard, Browns talk with Mary Kay Cabot & remembering Don Banks
Peter's Training Camp Tour continues as he has conversations with an All-Pro CB & the Defensive Rookie of the Year. Plus a chat about the most interesting team in football, and remembering an old friend.
(1:15) Peter tells a few stories and reminisces on what made Don Banks such a great friend and colleague.
(6:00) Colts LB Darius Leonard talks about his fabulous rookie year, why shutting down Adrian Peterson was his welcome to the NFL moment, why tackles are not overrated, and the Usain Bolt quote that drives him every day.
(29:30) Jaguars CB Jalen Ramsey explains why he's the best defensive back in the league (but might not be in Jacksonville for long), putting a $20 bill in his shoulder pads, and which CBs were his inspiration.
(41:20) Mary Kay Cabot, who has covered the Browns for nearly 30 years, talks about what it's like to cover the most fascinating team in the NFL.
Rank #2: NFL Draft Preview Extravaganza
ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Baker Mayfield being in play for the Browns at number one, on his over-under-overall-pick (15) where Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson is drafted in round one, and on the two teams he feels are most likely to trade out of the first round.
The MMQB’s Albert Breer whips through the top 12 of the draft with me, and what his surprise of the first round would be.
Greg Cosell, executive producer and on-air analyst for The NFL Matchup show on ESPN, on the quarterback he likes best in this draft, the quarterback he sees as the “young, wild stallion” in this draft, on who he’d take if he were Giants GM Dave Gettleman with the second pick, on whether he thinks a running back is worth being picked first overall, and the one defensive player he is in love with in this draft.
NFL Network reporter Mike Garofolo, embedded with the Jets for the draft, on his gut feeling who they’ll pick if it comes down to Josh Rosen and Baker Mayfield, on the fate of star-crossed Christian Hackenberg, and on the biggest surprise that could happen in round one—and it involves the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Rank #3: Tom Brady, 5 X Super Bowl Champion - Part 1 of 2
In this episode, Brady tells the story of New England's incredible comeback and breaks down some of the most important plays. Yes, New England's Friday practice ended with a botched two point conversion... You'll see the game from Brady's point of view.
Part Two of the Brady-centric podcast will post Thursday. In Part Two, Brady will talk about his legacy and his life away from the football field.
Rank #4: Tom Brady, 5 X Super Bowl Champion - Part 2 of 2
Brady talks about his future, his lifestyle, his family and his refusal to show much emotion about his four-game suspension by the NFL this season in the Deflategate scandal. And future opponents be warned, Brady isn't retiring soon. "I know next year is not going to be my last year," he said.
Rank #5: John Feinstein, Bob Glauber and Jack Gilden, authors of good NFL books for the holiday season.
Feinstein, author of 40 books including the new one "Quarterback: Inside the Most Important Position in the National Football League," on playing the toughest job in sports, and on how racism still may exist in the evaluation of quarterback by the NFL.
Glauber, author of "Guts and Genius: The Story of Three Unlikely Coaches Who Came To Dominate the NFL in the '80s," on how Bill Walsh, Bill Parcells and Joe Gibbs all were in job jeopardy in their first NFL seasons, on the odd and tempestuous relationships between the three of them, and on how every coach in the NFL today is on the coaching tree of one of those men.
Gilden, author of "Collision of Wills: Johnny Unitas, Don Shula and the Rise of the Modern NFL," in a fascinating and living-history look at the NFL of the sixties, with an incredible passage from his book on Vince Lombardi and concussions, and on how Unitas and Shula really felt about the other and the game.
Rank #6: John Elway, GM Denver Broncos, and Philip Rivers, QB San Diego Chargers
In this episode, John Elway talks about retirement, his subsequent career venture in car dealerships and getting back into football. The Football legend discusses the precious time he spent with his dad before he passed. He highlights the importance of building teams and choosing the players to surround himself with. Elway make a point of being the guy who talks the truth to players. He knows they might not like what he says but he wants to have a reputation for players trusting what comes from his mind. Elway gives an insight into off-the-field operations by discussing bringing Peyton Manning into the organization and the difficult talk of asking him to take a salary cut in his last year.
Peter King also spoke to Philips Rivers about the chances that this may the last season for the Chargers in San Diego and what it means to him being back this year. Rivers explains why San Diego is a great football town and how sports have helped bring great things to the community. Rivers answers the question, would he move with the team or commute to Los Angeles…And what’s his sales pitch to keep the team in San Diego?
Rank #7: Ed Werder, former ESPN reporter and Jed York, CEO San Francisco 49ers
Werder details his quiet outrage on being laid off by ESPN and what the ESPN layoffs mean for the future of the journalism business. He explains why he changed his Twitter handle to @EdWerderRFA and talks about the stigma of getting laid off.
Jed York on how his new John Lynch/Kyle Shanahan team did in their first draft, on being a lightning rod for angry 49er fans, and on what went wrong in his fiery relationship with Jim Harbaugh.
Rank #8: Special Super Bowl 53 podcast: Patriots owner Robert Kraft, cornerback Stephon Gilmore, NFL Network's Mike Silver, and a special Hall of Fame analysis with long-time voter Rick Gosselin
Silver, at halftime of the Patriots' 13-3 victory over the Rams, on the struggles of a man he knows well, Los Angeles quarterback Jared Goff.
Gilmore on his big interception in the fourth quarter that foiled the Rams' comeback and ensured the Patriots' sixth Super Bowl title.
Kraft on putting the Patriots' dynasty into perspective, and on how difficult it will be for any team to do what the Patriots have done again.
Gosselin, explaining the meaning of the defense-heavy class of 2019 ... and how the Hall of Fame voters have wised up about trying to bring equity to the honor of making the Hall.
Rank #9: Earl Thomas on the end of the Legion of Boom, plus Falcons star DT Grady Jarrett, & inside the Jets with Rich Cimini
Peter King is on the road driving south, as his training camp tour rolls on.
(1:30) Peter takes you through a day in the life on the road, including having tea & scones with an NFL GM.
(8:00) Falcons star DT Grady Jarrett discusses what it felt like to sign his big deal, why falling to the 5th round in the Draft wasn't even close to the worst thing that happened to him that weekend, and being inches away from sacking Tom Brady to clinch the Super Bowl.
(25:05) Ravens S Earl Thomas opens up about starting a new chapter in Baltimore, why he doesn't regret anything about how things ended in Seattle, and why a training camp conditioning test put him in such a good mood.
(32:45) 5 Minutes With a Writer features Jets beat reporter Rich Cimini of ESPN.com. Peter & Rich riff on the odd coaching dynamic in the Jets organization, Sam Darnold's California Cool demeanor, and whether or not Le'Veon Bell can be the same patient runner behind this Jets o-line.
Rank #10: Did the Chicago Bears have the best offseason in the NFL?
Veteran NFL reporter Dan Pompei on the latest Monster of the Midway middle linebacker in Chicago, on the best offseason of any team in the league, on why the Colts stuck at six and picked a guard, and on his new book due in August--Doug Pederson’s memoir “Fearless”--about the everyman Eagles coach ... Former NFL center LeCharles Bentley, an adviser to the NFL’s committee on taking the helmet out of the game, on whether it’s possible to create a reasonable game of football with the new rule, on Jets coach Todd Bowles’ biggest concern (and the concern of several coaches) with the rule about preventing both defensive and offensive players from lowering their heads and using the helmet to strike the opponent, and on what is at stake with the parents of America with this new and revolutionary restriction to the game.
Rank #11: Hall of Fame coach Tony Dungy, longtime NFL reporter Ed Werder and Patriots cornerback Jason McCourty
Dungy on his ideas to improve NFL officiating, on full-time officials, on how to improve the numbers of minority coaches, on the fate of Antonio Brown with his old team the Steelers, on his new book “The Soul of a Team” (Tyndale House), and on the most important elements to build a good team in sports and in life.
Werder, who worked the controversial NFC title game as a sideline reporter for Westwood One Radio, on what he witnessed on no-call pass-interference from the vantage point of the Saints bench, on how Jared Goff overcame early problems to outplay Drew Brees, and on his own future. He will be free to work for another media entity in September, when his ESPN contract expires.
McCourty, from the postgame locker room in Kansas City Sunday night, on the thrill of making the Super Bowl with the Patriots after a career of playing for lesser teams, and on the difference for a teammate in playing with Tom Brady.
Rank #12: Adam Schefter, ESPN and Katie Nolan Fox Sports
Schefter talks about why he grew up so curious, what he owes to Will McDonough and Chris Mortensen, and why 9/11 will never leave him. He also reveals the other sport that fascinates him to no end (and makes him wager), and the surprising new sport he will be covering at ESPN.
Katie Nolan discusses how she got into this business, her dream job, and why she admires Jon Stewart and John Oliver. She also explains why the Darren Sharper for the Hall of Fame argument really sets her off.
Rank #13: Patriots receiver and Super Bowl 53 MVP Julian Edelman
Edelman on the winding path he took from being an option quarterback at Kent State 10 years ago to catching 10 passes in the Super Bowl, on why the Patriots are different than the other 31 teams in the league, on being suspended for the first month of this season for testing positive for a PED, and on being convinced the Patriots’ run of excellence is not over.
Rank #14: Special Draft Episode: Mike Mayock, NFL Network Draft Analyst
Rank #15: Chargers all pro safety Derwin James, NFL Network correspondent Aditi Kinkwabhala, and ESPN's Dan Orlovsky, the former NFL quarterback.
James on how the Chargers' odd defensive alignment in Baltimore helped them win a Wild Card game, on why he has been so dominant in his rookie year, and how he feels "honored" to play against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick in the divisional playoff game Sunday in Foxboro.
Kinkwabhala, who has covered the Steelers extensively, with a view into the dysfunctional Steelers locker room, on who is right and who is wrong in the Antonio Brown controversy, and what she thinks needs to happen for Mike Tomlin to take back control of his locker room.
Orlovsky on the magic of Nick Foles, on how a backup quarterback like Foles (Orlovsky was a longtime NFL backup) can prepare himself to win the big games that Foles has won, and on the playoff weekend to come--including the shaky quarterback of the Rams, Jared Goff, who was in camp with the Rams (and Orlovsky) in 2017.
Rank #16: Luke Kuechly, LB Carolina Panthers, and Jeff Fisher, Head Coach LA Rams
Rank #17: Ernie Accorsi (Former NFL GM) on the eve of the most important QB draft in years...
On the eve of the most important quarterback draft in years ...
Former NFL general manager Ernie Accorsi with a living history of two of the most historically significant drafts ever: the 1983 draft, when Accorsi, as a rookie GM of the Baltimore Colts, drafted John Elway ... and the 2004 draft, when he set his sights as GM of the Giants on Eli Manning, and how he made that happen.
Rank #18: Peyton Manning and Le'Veon Bell
Peter King talks to retired quarterback Peyton Manning and Steelers running back LeVeon Bell.
Manning on what his daily life is like, traveling as a speaker, driving the car pool for his first-grade twins and coaching their flag football team. He also explains why he wasn't tempted to return to the NFL last season, how he's been staying close to football since retirement and a potential, yet far off future for himself an executive for an NFL team.
Bell, in the Pittsburgh locker room after Sunday’s win over Baltimore, on his amazement over carrying the ball 35 times in the game, on whether he could keep up a pace like that, on any lingering resentment over his contract from his summer holdout, and on how humbling it is to hear from other running backs at all levels of football who want to model their games after his different running style.
Rank #19: Bob Costas (NBC Sports), Jason Whitlock (Fox Sports 1) and Tunch Ilkin (Former Pittsburgh Steelers guard current Steelers radio colorman)
Peter King talks to Bob Costas of NBC Sports, Jason Whitlock of Fox Sports 1 and Tunch Ilkin, former Steelers guard and current Steelers radio colorman.
Costas on how we had mis-applied patriotism to be almost exclusively militaristic, on how players and the NFL should proceed now in the wake of the week three protests, and how the national anthem might have more meaning if reserved for special occasions.
Whitlock on how America's addiction to Twitter blew this up into an overwhelming story, on how players and the NFL should have handled Donald Trump's remarks, and how they should put away their emotions in the coming weeks.
Ilkin on how this reminds him of being a Steelers team leader during the NFL strike of 1987, on the advice he gave friend and Steelers guard Alejandro Villanueva this week, and on what Steeler fans are telling him on his nightly talk show this week.