Monday, March 28, 2016

2016 NFL Draft Profile #41 - Dak Prescott, QB, Mississippi State

http://sportsday.dallasnews.com/dallas-cowboys/cowboys/2016/03/28/bob-sturms-draft-profile-series-qb-dak-prescott-certainly-offers-flashes-worthy

Sunday, March 20, 2016

2016 NFL Free Agent Profile - Benson Mayowa, DE, Oakland

http://sportsday.dallasnews.com/dallas-cowboys/cowboys/2016/03/20/sturms-free-agent-profiles-cowboys-sign-oaklands-benson-mayowa-offer-sheet

One thing that I really enjoy about my career choice is that every new day allows me to learn about an athlete that I knew nothing about.   This is easy in covering the draft because I follow the NFL much closer than college football, so when you start getting deeper into the NFL draft, it is not difficult to find a player that I have flat-out, never heard a thing about in my life.
This also works for my passions of hockey and world soccer.  Every day, there is no reason why you can't learn about a brand new story that has put an athlete in the top level of his profession.  I will say, though, sometimes it is more difficult to find NFL players that I don't know anything about.   But, they are out there. Usually, they play in the AFC and usually on a team that hasn't been very good for a while and usually they are a reserve.  And then the Cowboys decide to splash a little free agent money in their direction and it is time to learn.
And that is today's exercise with the 24 year-old defensive end from Idaho and now the Oakland Raiders, Benson Mayowa.  The Cowboys signed him on Monday after Oakland agreed not to match Dallas' offer.
This is an interesting plan by the Cowboys who are looking for defensive end help without throwing big money at the veterans on the market.  Instead, they are looking through other team's reserves and trying to find someone who would be giddy about up-front money that would exceed all of their career earnings and try to poach them away.  
To fully understand where they are on Mayowa and why the Cowboys think this is worth the trouble, we must do two things - 1) look at Oakland's positional situation at DE. and 2) look at what type of player Mayowa actually has shown in his age-23 and age-24 seasons in Oakland.  
The Raiders had two starters play the edge of their defensive front in 2015 who were top draft picks in the last few drafts.  The amazing Khalil Mack was taken with the 5th pick in the 2014 draft and already is off the charts with his awesome overall play.  Then, in 2015, the Raiders took Mario Edwards at the top of Round 2 and instantly inserted him at the other edge as more of a strong-side DE threat.  Now, in free agency, they grabbed the speed rusher Bruce Irvin from Seattle for a large 4-year, $37m deal a few weeks back.  So, with the money they will allocate to Mack and Edwards going forward and the money already invested in Edwards, Mayowa moves down the depth chart and they may not have much of a role for him.  But, they have the cap room and could elect to just keep Mayowa and not really feel the pain.  Then, when they must pay Mack or Edwards for extensions, Mayowa's big 2016 number will already be done.  
Last year, Benson Mayowa played 376 defensive snaps for Oakland - which represented a career high.  For those wondering, the average defense plays about 1,000 snaps in a season and that is around 62 or 63 a game.  So, after missing four games, he played about 31 snaps a game in 12 games.  He would get a few series a game from Mario Edwards as a rotational and then would replace Edwards on some 3rd downs as more of a pass rusher.  Later in the season, Edwards would miss time, so Mayowa was able to get 1st team-action against Green Bay and Denver.
He was undrafted out of Idaho as a very lanky edge guy.  This is important because if Oakland does not match the deal (which they reportedly will), they would be due no draft pick compensation from Dallas.  He was signed by Seattle and played with them in 2013 on their Super Bowl Championship team (with Bruce Irvin) and played 2 games in September.  Then, he was released in 2014 before camp ended and was grabbed by Oakland.  He has been with the Raiders in 2014 and 2015 and has played roughly the same role as backup edge guy ever since.  His production has been extremely modest with 2 fumble recoveries and 2 sacks but according to a source with the Cowboys, "He has really developed his game over his three years in the league and looks like he is ready for a bigger role".  Well, Oakland has really loaded up at this spot and isn't afraid to aim much higher than developmental guys anymore, so while his paycheck is not guaranteed to improve, his playing time may actually go backwards in Oakland.  But, Dallas has cash and a spot.
So, now Dallas had to put an offer out that found the balance between paying enough to make Oakland think, but not too much that if Oakland did pass that it would be considered absurd.  
They think they did.  So, let's see what inspired their interest in this young - but will turn 25 at training camp - athletic edge guy.
BENSON MAYOWA, #95, OAKLAND - 6'3, 240 - IDAHO - August 3, 1991
Here are 10 or 11 plays I wanted to show you from looking for his contributions in the 2nd half of 2015 that I have found for you, as we try to get an idea of what inspired the Cowboys' interest.
Look for big #95 off the edge here who first over pursues on the bootleg, but then rallies back to the play and finds a ball laying on the ground.  Once you see him run with the ball, his athleticism is apparent.  That has never been an issue as his 40-time going back to his regional combine of 4.65 always caught the eyes of the scouts.  He is surely not very stout as a defensive end, but the arm length and the ability to move is always going to be attractive in today's NFL.
He does this pretty well.  He holds the edge on a running play and is able to dive at the runner and get in on the tackle.  It looks questionable from this angle wether he got part of Danny Woodhead, but in fact, he did.  You certainly want someone who can not only hold up the flank, but then make a play on the ball carrier, and Mayowa does this repeatedly when you watch him.  
Above, against the Vikings, he is at that RDE and when Adrian Peterson gets stuck on his run, Mayowa is one of many to close him down after Benson is clearly held and held well by the pulling right guard who is not fast enough to get over and hold up the edge.  I think that is a tactically odd plan by offensive lines against quick edge guys, but the Vikes tried it and it was a disaster.  You can see that in plays like this, he certainly looks more like an outside LB in a 3-4, to be honest.  And with Oakland's hybrid front, they were more than happy to employ that.  He might be the text-book tweener.  
Mayowa is on the far left of your screen here and when the Packers zone right, he is in full sprint to close down any cutback ideas.  James Starks decides to cutback when he sees nothing frontside, and Mayowa is right there to help on the tackle.  He is great for this play, where it should be noted, he is not accounted for.  This will never be an issue with him as his motor runs hot.
Here is one we will really like.  Here he is on the other side.  Far right, is Benson Mayowa.  Again, the Packers try to confuse the edge guy with the mesh point, but Benson is watching the ball go to John Kuhn inside.  Here is what we want to see.  Mayowa pounces hard with the full body pounce with legs parallel to the ground.  Ideal work.  You know what the Cowboys want in edge guys and he is checking those boxes with high motor, willingness to lay out, and the traits of wheels and long arms.  
On this play he is back on the left side.  Starks blows by him, but his chase allows him to eventually close in, strip the ball, and recover it.  You are never out of the play.  We do not loaf.  This is potentially a useful Marinelli player.
But, Bob, will he get pressure on the QB?  I don't want to misrepresent his abilities.  He is not going to be a sack machine.  Much of what he accomplishes is going to be on motor and effort, with some developing ability with leverage and using the arm bar to hold off his man and get his body around the corner.  But, when you watch him here abuse Lions' LT Riley Reiff, you can dream that there is more where this came from.  That is just beautiful.
Same game, a few plays later, he again holds up the edge and then pounces on the ball carrier to the inside.  It helps to have a smaller workload, because when he gets on the field he is looking to jump on anything that moves.  He is not pacing himself.  This is why you want a full rotation of 8 defensive line contributors.  Energy off the bench.
Back playing that standup edge on the far right.  The Broncos try the end around and look at this guy close down the edge in a hurry.  No issue here as a 3-4 OLB, basically, and he turns those hips and then again flies and pounces.  I am not sure he is going to kill the run if you run right at him, but in space, there is a lot to like.
How about dropping him back into pass defense?  He will rally to the play properly, not take a loaf, and get in on the tackle downfield.  
Finally, on this one, he is there as an active body to clean up the mess caused with this pressure from the other side as Khalil Mack proves he is a beast again and when the ball comes loose, Mayowa is there to battle for it (it ended up being a safety).  
So, again, this is not Mack or Lawrence Taylor.  This is a 24-year old that the Cowboys wish to put in their rotation and are splashing enough money up front that they will make the Raiders make a decision over a guy that Oakland was admittedly trying to upgrade from.  
If I am Oakland, I probably keep him because their roster is so affordable right now, and after you write him that bonus check, the rest of his deal is nice insurance in case somebody gets hurt.  If I am Dallas, I had to not get carried away with a contract on a player who would likely just be a reserve and give you another athlete at a spot on your roster where they need help quickly. 
But, either way, now I can say I spent a few hours getting to know young Benson Mayowa.  Hope this helps you, as well.  

Friday, March 18, 2016

The Sturm Plan For Pick #4

http://sportsday.dallasnews.com/dallas-cowboys/cowboys/2016/03/18/sturms-mailbag-friday-part-1-thoughts-pick-4

I know, I know.  The Mailbag is supposed to be answering mail.  And, it will be in Part 2.  I promise.  And that comes out in just a little bit.  But, Part 1 - the first 1,000 words or so - is going to be all about getting on to paper my vision for picking #4.  It is one thing to say parts of this on Twitter at different times over the course of 100 days from the end of the season until the Cowboys are on the clock, but now, I think I should spend some of my Friday morning making sure this is all on paper in long-form.
We shall call it, basically, the answer to the following question: 
Q: "Bob, what do you think is the smartest thing to do with the 4th Pick in the draft?"
There are some vital things to understand as we go here.  They must remain top of mind.  Let's start here:  Picking #4 is incredibly rare.  
We should review with some historical context.  The Cowboys have not picked with their own earned selection this high in the draft since 1989.  That's right, during the generation where you think the Cowboys have been as disappointing as they have at any point of their existence, they have never been bad enough to get up into the tip-top of the draft.  Given the welfare program that the NFL has this time of year to help the "football needy", this is worth noting.  The Cowboys have had some very rough times, but since they selected Troy Aikman they have never been this bad.  The Russell Maryland #1 pick in 1991 was from New England, by the way.  The Dave Campo years gave the Cowboys the 7th, 8th, and 5th picks.   The first one went to Seattle to pay for Joey Galloway, the 8th was Roy Williams.  The 5th became Terance Newman.  They also traded up to #6 to get Morris Claiborne in 2012, but I know everyone is trying to forget about that.  So, while you have seen plenty of bad seasons in the last 20 years, you haven't been "Top of the draft bad", and this one time is that one time.  
However you digest that last paragraph, the point is this:  You haven't had this pile of capital in the draft in a long, long time.  So, let's focus on not blowing it.  
And that requires us to move on to the next objective which is not always in play:  This pick is so good that you cannot afford to select a player for need.
That will simply mean this - Do not tell me about how the roster looks in March 2016 to do your picking.  Rosters change quickly and we have no idea its coming.  The team will say everything is fine over here and then unexpectedly, one guy gets suspended and another guy gets banned internally from ever setting foot in the facility again.  Injuries hit out of nowhere.  The point is, your roster condition is like the Texas Weather: you don't like it?  Wait a few hours.  It is constantly evolving.  To be so small minded that the only reason you want Joey Bosa is because it is 6 months before the start of the season and you have no idea who your opening day left defensive end is, would be an incredibly poor way to blow your best pick in decades.  You need a left DE?  Sign Jeremy Mincey or Jack Crawford for $2 million to plug the hole and save your amazing pick for something amazing - for all the right reasons.   Then, circle back and add a DE later if all you are trying to do is make sure you aren't starting a fern at defensive end.
You don't get a shot at generational talent very often.  You must ask yourself when making this pick the following question:  Do I think that this player can be the face of my franchise and the cover of my yearbook in 2023?  That is 8 seasons away.  If you do this correctly, in 8 seasons Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, Byron Jones, and possibly an aging Dez Bryant are still a part of this thing.  Other than that, I need to use this pick on adding to that group.  This is the "Big Picture" approach.  
You may notice that the "big picture" approach is the exact opposite of the "what can help me right now" approach.  This is what I get the most grief about from the fans and I am telling you, you cannot think about September 2016 with this type of currency.  Out of the Top 10?  This conversation changes.  But, in the Top 5?  You simply owe it to your franchise and its longevity to take the talent that is most likely to be a great player for you in 8 years, not 8 months.  
This is why when I am constantly asked about Ezekiel Elliott and Myles Jack, I generally offer a less-than-excited response.  It isn't that those aren't talented players.  They are wonderful players that I think will be great talents between now and 2020.  But, those 2 positions in particular have a mountain of evidence that indicates the life-span is short.  They may be elite players for a bit, but unfortunately, for every RB that lasts 2 full contracts with his team (8-10 years) there are about 100 that don't.  And for me, high-tackle inside linebackers are essentially the RB of the defense, in that they are generally involved in many high-speed collisions where they are taking the punishment directly.  Again, some last.  But, most get wore down as they head towards 30 years old.  I just think at #4, you must consider the life-span of an asset.  Is it reasonable to assume that a player at either of these positional spots in today's NFL can both play at an elite level and play with health and longevity like a Quarterback, Left tackle, pass rusher, or even a cornerback?  Evidence tells us "no".
So, if you take Elliott or Jack, you are getting a fine player at a risky position.  I assume most people don't need a further explanation on this, but let's look at RB vs QB briefly:
In 2004 (12 drafts ago), the league saw 3 franchise QBs selected within the first 2 hours.  The Giants left with Eli Manning, the Chargers left with Philip Rivers, and the Steelers snagged Ben Roethlisberger within the first 11 picks.  As we sit here 143 months later, those 3 teams still employ those three assets.  One other player from that top group remains with his franchise, WR Larry Fitzgerald in Arizona.  
Now, let's fast-forward to the 2008 draft.  This is merely 8 years back.  Again, teams addressed franchise QB with Atlanta selecting Matt Ryan and Baltimore found Joe Flacco.  As you know, both teams will have both of those QBs for probably several more seasons.  
But, in that 2008 1st round - 8 seasons back - 5 teams decided to go with a RB.  Oakland selected Darren McFadden and he played in Oakland for 7  seasons.   Carolina grabbed Jonathan Stewart and he remains there today (still just 28 years old).  Dallas snagged Felix Jones and let him go after his first and only contract.  Pittsburgh drafted Rashard Mendenhall (who they allowed to leave in 2012) and he retired at 26.  And Tennessee drafted the fantastic Chris Johnson and then released him after 2013.  
Am I cherry-picking the data?  Sure.  But, the point is that we don't think it is weird that Big Ben, Eli, and Phil are still with their original teams 12 years later.  But, we do raise an eyebrow that the Panthers have received 8 years from Stewart at RB.  That is called "positional longevity".  Some spots you expect 3 contracts.  Some you are surprised if they finish their 2nd deal.  
So, let's circle back and tie this up in a bow.  I am not selecting at #4 for need.  I am not selecting at #4 for a short-term position.  But, I am selecting at #4 for the type of guy who can perhaps affect the direction of my franchise for the next generation of talent.  
That is why I keep coming back to finding my Quarterback.  If the data tells us that almost all starting QBs - especially those in the "elite" conversations - are found in the 1st round, and if it then tells us that most of them are found high in the first round, then priority #1 must be to get the guy who by reasonable projections could be my QB in 2028 and it would not seem odd by Roethlisberger/Eli/Rivers comparable spans.  Why does it matter if he plays in 2016?  Or even 2017? If the best place to get your next guy is high in the draft, and if picking high in the draft is extremely rare around here, why would anyone resist this fit in a year where the Cowboys may actually have a chance to take the top QB talent in the entire draft?  And at a time where Tony Romo does not seem like a cinch to play 16 games in a season ever again?  
But, Bob, what if that guy isn't in this draft?  You are right.  I might like Jared Goff more than the professional scouts.  I think he will be great in the pros (especially when he is 25 years old - in October of 2019!), but I have been wrong before (many times).  So, then I go down my list and look for the best talent that has the best chance of joining Tyron, Zack, Byron, and maybe old Dez in 2023.  
Personally, I think that would make my list at #4 this:  Jared Goff, then Jalen Ramsey (a generational defensive back that has a chance to make the impact of Charles Woodson who just retired after 18 amazing seasons), then Joey Bosa.  Just to clarify, Bosa plays a position that ages extremely well and he is amazingly young.  If he is the athlete he seems to be, there is no reason he isn't going strong when he turns 30 (in July of 2025!) There is about a 99% chance that I can have one of those 3 at pick #4.  If all of those are gone, now, you can talk to me about trading backwards, Carson Wentz, or if none of those options are happening, then let's talk about Zeke.  
I am not worried about who is on this roster right now.  Laremy Tunsil is the wildcard here because he appears to be a bit of a Tyron clone, and perhaps it is hypocritical to say that left tackle is blocked, but he might be the one guy I would pass on because of where my franchise is currently at.
Otherwise, that is my take on your considerations and decision making at #4.  
This is just too good of a pick with too many good talents to make a poor, short-sighted decision.

Friday, March 11, 2016

2016 Free Agent Profile - Cedric Thornton, DT, Dallas

http://sportsday.dallasnews.com/dallas-cowboys/cowboys/2016/03/11/bob-sturm-free-agency-cowboys-land-run-stopper-cedric-thornton-eagles

It is nice to know that free agency week is not just about teases and rumors. Sometimes, you actually add a nice piece to your team and yesterday the Cowboys did just that. Cedric Thornton has been signed for what appears to be roughly a four-year, $17 million deal. The deal includes $5M up front in a signing bonus and then base salaries of $1M, $3M, $4M, and $4M -- with the first two years ($9M fully guaranteed). The final two years will basically be team options with only the remainder of his signing bonus ($1.25M per year) as potential dead money.
Cedric is going to turn 28-years-old in June and is 6-foot-4 and around 310 pounds. He has been an Eagles force in the middle for the past four seasons out of Southern Arkansas. He is a run stopper who will play around 600 snaps as a run-down speed bump 1-technique. But, he is actually much more than that.
Nick Hayden has played this 1-technique spot for the past three seasons and has performed admirably for a player who wasn't even in the league when the Cowboys called.  But, Thornton has a much bigger and impressive toolbox.  He plays all first and second downs and has a knack for destroying outside zone blocking plays.  Now you may be wondering how this helps the pass rush - well, it really doesn't.  In nickel or passing downs, he is generally on the sideline.  He will occasionally get to the QB, but odds are you have better natural pass rushers than him.  
The price is what makes this right for me.  The Giants just paid Damon Harrison $46 million with $24 million guaranteed to do a similar job in New York.  The Giants, I guess, plan on playing Harrison and Johnathan Hankins both inside on their line which will not allow much on the ground but will certainly not get to the QB, either.  Either way, Harrison for almost $10 million a year or Thornton for $4 million?  There is no question if you are going to pay for a two-down-run-stopper, you want one but you also don't want to give them all the money.  I can't imagine the Giants are going to like that deal in 24 months.  
Either way, let's focus on Thornton.  No team has given the Cowboys' running game more problem than the Eagles.  There are many reasons for that - Fletcher Cox, Bennie Logan, and the overall depth of the Eagles front as well as their willingness to play eight in the box as a general rule and take their chances with Dez Bryant (which killed them in 2014) or Terrence Williams (which sort of killed them in 2015 at their place).  But, in all four of those meetings, you can see No. 72 doing damage as he destroys run plays.  And he is constantly going up against Zack Martin to do his damage, which should tell us a few things about his ability to hold his own.  Neither guy was winning every play.  And I bet these performances against the best Dallas has to offer sold them that they should plunk down some cash to steal away a nice piece at the right price.
I went through much of his 2015 in the last day to try to demonstrate what the Cowboys surely saw that inspired them to strike at what could be a bargain in free agency.
Cedric Thornton - No. 72 - 6'4, 309 - 27-years-old
Here is a good place to start.  Look at the Panthers wanting to get on the outside with a pulling guard and get their runner into space.  Thornton - No. 72 - is not going to let that happen and see the big man turn on the wheels from defensive end.  He uses his arms to stay in front of the right guard and then displays athleticism to make the play.  Top-notch stuff, here.  
But, this right here is his specialty.  Lined up at the 1-tech between the right guard and the center, Thornton kills zone plays by finding a way through the wall and then making the play from behind or at the point of attack.  He is too quick for most interior linemen to stay in front of and he gets in and makes the tackle himself.  He kills zone plays.  I saw this repeatedly.
Zone read to his side as No. 72 lines up at DE again.  He reads the play, keeps outside leverage, and then gets in on the tackle.  Again, Hayden played hard, but he can't dream of this skill set.
Same concept against the Lions.  The right tackle is trying to get the reach block on Thornton and can't.  Thornton has the strength in his upper body to hold the opening open for himself to rush through and then track down the running back from behind to make the play.  There isn't much accomplished against the Eagles front with this type of play.  
1-technique clinic here.  Push the center right out of the way, peel back and make the tackle yourself.  There is no question that "keeping the linebackers clean" is a selling point of a proper defensive tackle from the 1-tech, but what if he just makes a bunch of tackles himself?  This should be getting you fired up by now.  
I had some people ask me to find some double teams on him and how he stands his ground.  When two 300-pound OL key on you, it is a lot to ask for a man to stand up to them, but Thornton does fine above and actually gets in on the tackle.  This is not his specialty, but he can handle it as well as Hayden can.
And others were asking about his pass rush.  Honestly, he is not a huge factor here because he has a very limited Rolodex of moves.  He has one.  It is a bull rush.  This can help collapse a pocket and get some hustle sacks/hits, but it is not why you signed him.  You signed him to shut down first and second down so that your rushers can get there on third-and-long.  He does his job quite well.
Now, here he is against Zack Martin, Doug Free, and Travis Frederick in games this year against the Cowboys:
Here is a sack from Thornton.  Don't go falling in love with them, but it has happened against the Cowboys.  It looks like Free has no idea the play started and that Romo decides not to throw a ball at the last second.  The whole play looks bizarre, but Thornton did get a sack against Romo back in September.  It happened.  
Here he is being double teamed and is battling his tail off to stay in there and ultimately to help get in on the stop after a few yards.  Again, if a team wants to double you, it is hard to affect the play, but that means you have just taken out the right guard and right tackle and your mates now have a clear path to the ball.  You did your job.
He is not perfect.  He is very good, but so is Martin.  Here, he gets out leveraged and Martin clears him right out of the screen.  Like I said, they both had their wins.  
Thornton on this play has Free on a zone left where McFadden picks a hole off of No. 72's shoulder.  Thornton again loses his man and makes the tackle himself.  He is great at winning a quick physical battle while keeping an eye on the ball carrier so that you can stop the play.
Thornton turned Martin here and closed off the flank, causing the running back to head right into the waiting arms of Bennie Logan.  Again, Thornton ends the path of this play with a really quick and athletic move around Martin but will not get a stat on this play.  He merely affects the play with his nice effort here and again, this is a club the Cowboys did not have in their bag on the interior.  
Another rare chance to pass rush from DE for No. 72 and another exhibition that he pretty much just keeps contain and uses his bullrush.  He is not much of a pass rusher unless he gets his man off-balance, but it is all power.  
This is the Eagles' bear front, which they showed the Cowboys a bit last season.  This means that the center and both guards are covered by interior Eagles (taking away the chance to double team).  Watch Thornton knock Martin right out of the way to get in on the play.  Also, notice No. 91 Fletcher Cox show that he is a superstar who can do everything Thornton can do and many things Thornton cannot.  But, Thornton was not out-classed by Martin at all.  
One more time.  Thornton versus Martin on a zone left.  McFadden follows the lead fullback and then decides to try the cutback lane.  Free doesn't help much here as he stumbles through the path and Thornton has his arms open and waiting for McFadden.  Thornton is fantastic on the backside of these zone plays and he cleans up most of them.  This also reminds us that McFadden is not great running zone plays, too.
Hopefully this study shows you some real promise here.  I think the price is great and the player has certainly shown that he can provide something the Cowboys did not have.  
He is not a world beater, but exactly the type of bargain shopping you want this time of year.  At his price of about $4 million a season, the Cowboys plugged a hole they have had for several seasons with a nice upgrade.  I like this deal quite a bit.

Saturday, March 05, 2016

Things That Interest Me



Above, is the greatest goal I think I have ever seen in person. David Beckham in his prime with a brilliant chip on my trip to Upton Park in 2002.

So, for no other reason, I recently pulled that game out and posted it up for you. And, while I am at it, here are the 16 matches I have seen in the United Kingdom to date.

The Results from my 6 Road Trips to England:

Deportivo 2, Arsenal 0 3/12/2002 - Champions League - Highbury

Manchester United 5, West Ham 3 3/16/2002 - Upton Park

Arsenal 2, Charlton 1 2/28/2004 - Highbury

Newcastle 1, Portsmouth 1 2/29/2004 - Fratton Park

2007 Trip Recap Blog Here

Manchester United 1, Liverpool 0 3/3/07 - Anfield

Blackburn 2, Bolton 1 3/4/07 - Reebok Stadium

Chelsea 3, Aston Villa 0 4/10/10 - FA Cup Semifinal - Wembley

Liverpool 0, Fulham 0 4/11/10 - Anfield

2012 Trip Recap Blog Here

Southend 3, Barnet 0  4/20/12 - Roots Hall

Arsenal 0, Chelsea 0  4/21/12 - Emirates

Queens Park Rangers 1, Tottenham 0  4/21/12 - Loftus Road

Manchester United 4, Everton 4  4/22/12 - Old Trafford

2014 Trip Recap Blog Here

Millwall 1, Bournemouth 0 5/3/14 - The Den

Arsenal 1, West Bromwich 0  5/4/14 - The Emirates

Chelsea 0, Norwich City 0  5/4/14 - Stamford Bridge

Crystal Palace 3, Liverpool 3  5/5/14 - Selhurst Park

Below is my view from that amazing night.


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I imagine it would have to be a really boring day at your job to find this interesting, but that is why I named this post like I did. In fact, I was just looking through my ticket stubs the other day and was reminded of the day in February of 2004 when I had a chance to see Arsenal in person (with Spike Lee and the picture I took below)



Various other video items from these matches: