3 areas of concern for the Titans heading into 2019

The Tennessee Titans just missed out on the playoffs in 2018, losing a winner-take-all game to the Indianapolis Colts in Week 17 and finishing with a record of 9-7.nfl store

Now, going into 2019, the Titans are hoping to erase the memory of that painful loss and get back to the postseason.nfl uniforms

Tennessee is certainly a solid team, but the general consensus is that it will not make the playoffs this coming season because it simply has too many holes on its roster, most notably on the offensive end.nfl nike titans

There are plenty of concerns for the Titans heading into 2019, and here are the three main ones:nfl hats

The Tennessee Titans just missed out on the playoffs in 2018,
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losing a winner-take-all game to the Indianapolis Colts in Week 17 and finishing with a record of 9-7.

Now, going into 2019, the Titans are hoping to erase the memory of that painful loss and get back to the postseason.official nfl football

Tennessee is certainly a solid team, but the general consensus is that it will not make the playoffs this coming season because it simply has too many holes on its roster,nfl wholesale  most notably on the offensive end.

There are plenty of concerns for the Titans heading into 2019, and here are the three main ones:cheap nfl

Marcus Mariota, Titans

3. The Direction of the Offense

I’m not even sure if Tennessee itself knew which direction its offense was headed in 2018, and that is clearly reflected in the Titans’ usage of running back Derrick Henry.

Before Week 14, Henry had totaled double-digit carries just seven times and had not rushed for 60 yards in any one single game, accumulating 50 yards only three times.

But from Week 14 on, Henry became the focal point of the offense, scoring eight of his 12 rushing touchdowns on the season and racking up 585 yards, which was seriously over half of his yardage total on the season.cheap nfl hats

So, basically, the Titans went from rarely using Henry at all to running him ragged over the final four games of the season.

In 2019, Tennessee needs to find a scheme and stick to it.nike nfl store

2. The Receiving Corps wholesale nfl

Corey Davis established himself as the Titans’ No. 1 receiver this past year, hauling in 65 receptions for 891 yards and four touchdowns. Tennessee also signed Adam Humphries to play alongside him this offseason.authentic nfl football

But the Titans are going to need a group effort from their wideouts in order to be a respectable offense.nfl store online

A lot of that, of course, falls on Marcus Mariota, but his receivers also need to make plays. That means guys like Taywan Taylor and Tajae Sharpe are going to have to step up and provide Mariota with more options.

The good news is that tight Delanie Walker will be back after missing all but one game in 2018, so he will help spread the offense out, but either Davis is going to need to take his game to the next level and become a dynamic No. 1 or the supporting receivers are going to have to become more of a factor.

1. Marcus Mariota’s Health

Mariota’s first two seasons in the NFL were actually solid, particularly in Year 2 when he threw 26 touchdowns and just nine interceptions.

It’s easy to forget that, however, based on his last two years, as Mariota has totaled 24 touchdowns and 23 picks in 2017 and 2018. That is a terrible ratio, and while we can pile on Mariota for not playing well, we also need to keep in mind he hasn’t been healthy.

Mariota has been bothered by both elbow and leg issues over the last two seasons, which have kept him from performing at his highest level.

Now, obviously, Mariota himself deserves some blame, as those numbers are inexcusable no matter how you slice it, but if he can stay healthy in 2019, perhaps he will begin to resemble nfl online store his 2016 form when he looked like a good young quarterback on the rise.

Taylor Lewan Has Been Yannick Ngakoue’s Kryptonite

Jacksonville’s Yannick Ngakoue is one of the absolute best young pass rushers in the NFL, and at age 24 he can only get better as he enters his fourth season. He wants a new contract from the Jaguars and he clearly deserves it with his quality of play in his first three years in the league.nfl jersey sale

For his career, Ngakoue has put up 29.5 sacks, 70 QB hits, and 29 tackles for loss in 48 career games, an extremely impressive mark for a pass rusher that hasn’t even played a game in his age 24 season yet!nfl official jersey

The jarring part, however, has been how the fellow AFC South rival Titans have played against him.where to get nfl jerseys cheap
Since 2016 the Jaguars are 1-5 against the Titans. In those 6 games Ngakoue has put up 1 sack, 3 QB hits, and 2 tackles for loss. That’s china nfl jerseys cheap 0.17 sacks per game, 0.5 QB hits per game, and 0.33 TFL titansper game.authentic nfl jerseys china
In his other 42 games, Ngakoue has posted 28.5 sacks, 67 QB hits, and 27 tackles for loss. That’s 0.68 sacks per game, 1.60 QB hits per game, and 0.64 TFL per game.

Wow.authentic nfl jerseys cheap china

The craziest part is Ngakoue has never sacked Marcus Mariota. Not once. His only sack against the Titans came against Matt Cassel in Week 16 of the 2016 season, and that was because Mariota was out for the rest of the season due to a fractured fibula.nfl jerseys nike

In comparison, let’s check out what Ngakoue has done against the Colts and Texans so we can get a firm grasp of his career against the AFC South.nfl nike jersey
Colts: 6 games, 5.5 sacks, 13 QB hits, 6 TFL, 0.92 sacks per game, 2.17 QB hits per game, 1 TFL per game
Texans: 6 games, 3.5 sacks, 11 QB hits, 2 TFL, 0.58 sacks per game, 1.83 QB hits per game, 0.33 TFL per game
Titans: 6 games, 1.0 sacks, 3 QB hits, 2 TFL, 0.17 sacks per game, 0.50 QB hits per game, 0.33 TFL per game.my cheap nfl jerseys

Yeah, that’s absolutely insane. Hell, Ngakoue had as many QB hits last season against the Colts—who have one of the best offensive lines in the league—in two games (3) as he’s had against the Titans in six!authentic nfl jersey cheap

The difference in splits is amazing, but it does make sense. Ngakoue has regularly faced off against Taylor Lewan, one of the best left tackles in the game, so it’s not completely bizarre to see why his per game production would fall. Even so, that it’s fallen as far as it has is both astounding and a testament to Lewan’s quality, nfl jerseys cheap jerseys or at least in these matchups.where can i get nfl jerseys cheap

Let me put it this way: Lewan has never allowed a sack while facing Ngakoue. He’s obviously allowed some pressures here and there, but no sacks.women nfl jerseys

But don’t just take my word for it, see for yourself as we look at a few matchups between Taylor Lewan and Yannick Ngakoue. nfl jersey store nfl china jerseys

Obviously Lewan and Ngakoue are squaring off on the far left of the screen. This came in Ngakoue’s debut against the Titans (as in his first game against Tennessee, not his first game in general) on Thursday Night Football back in 2016.

Ngakoue attempts a club chop on Lewan, but the left tackle’s efforts prevent his pass rushing foe from getting a good angle on Mariota, as the quarterback fires a quick strike to Rishard Matthews for the 4-yard score.my cheap nfl jerseys

This is a hell of a stand by Lewan. Ngakoue tries an inside stab as his three-step counter, but the left tackle prevents him from getting outside leverage. Lewan’s footwork also keeps him sturdy, as even when Ngakoue has a better shot at hitting Mariota he’s still overwhelmed. Just an excellent rep from the three-time Pro Bowl tackle.nfl womens jerseys

Initially Lewan looks like he should be flagged with a false start, but upon closer inspection, he actually times the snap up perfectly. This slight edge allows him to contain Ngakoue just enough for Mariota to get this pass off. Pressure from Marcell Dareus still gets to the quarterback, but Lewan’s role at the very least prevents a big time hit.

Titans’ Dennis Kelly to battle for starting role following tumultuous 2018 season

Getting through an NFL season requires toughness and resolve, but for Tennessee Titans offensive lineman Dennis Kelly, the 2018 season was especially difficult.

He had to deal with the death of his father in December, and that came after he had worked his way back from an undiagnosed illness in September that caused him to lose weight and miss five of Tennessee’s nfl jersey sales first seven games. When he wasn’t dealing with those issues off the field, he was often in the lineup and playing well at right tackle in place of Jack Conklin, who started just nine games in 2018.

It added up to a challenging season for Kelly, who impressed teammates and coaches with his professionalism.
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There were early indications that 2018 wouldn’t be just another season for Kelly. He opened the season as a replacement for Conklin in the season opener in Miami, a brutal game that lasted seven hours and cheap jerseys nfl 10 minutes because of weather delays, making it the longest in NFL history.

Kelly’s problems started when he was hospitalized during the days leading up to Tennessee’s Week 2 matchup against the Houston Texans. Tests proved inconclusive, so the nerve-wracking affliction was never identified.nike jerseys nfl

“Literally, we don’t know anything,” Kelly said after leaving the hospital.china nfl jersey “That’s kind of the mystery.”nfl official jerseys cheap

Once Kelly, listed at 6-foot-8 and 321 pounds, started to feel better, managing the workload to put weight back on was difficult. He had to be careful not to overwork himself for fear of triggering the illness again, and he didn’t return to the lineup until getting five snaps in the Titans’ Week 7 game in London against the Los Angeles Chargers.

When Conklin suffered a concussion against the Dallas Cowboys in November, it opened the door again for Kelly to start — this time against the New England Patriots in Week 10. The Titans played arguably their best game of the season — a 34-10 win at Nissan Stadium — and quarterback Marcus Mariota was sacked only twice, thanks in large part to the protection from Kelly and the offensive line.

The mysterious illness was behind him, but Kelly’s world was turned upside down again when he was excused from the Titans’ facility on Dec. 10 to go back to the Chicago area to bury his father.nfl jerseys online

The Titans placed Conklin on injured reserve later that same week with a knee injury, and remarkably, Kelly returned in time to practice two days after his father’s burial. He once again was called upon to start at right tackle against the New York Giants in Week 15, and his inner strength to do so didn’t go unnoticed by teammates.nfl jersey from china

“I’m really proud of him,” left tackle Taylor Lewan said. “Given the situation he had to deal with before the game, it’s hard to even put myself in those shoes. It’d be tough. But he played a great game.”

One of the greatest things about football is how much of an escape it is for players and fans, and it proved to be the perfect remedy for Kelly while he was mourning.nfl wholesale jersey

“Dealing with everything going on in my personal life was hard,” Kelly said after the Titans’ 17-0 win Dec. 16 in New York. “Then knowing that the team was relying on me and having to try and catch up was a lot. where to buy authentic nfl jerseys The whole process of football … the routine and all the structure of it, in general, helped keep my mind off it. But the game, especially, helped.”

Orlando Magic: Center

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The following sentence, submitted by the Ringer’s Jonathan Tjarks, should thrill Orlando Magic fans since he’s discussing one of their own:

“He could develop into one of the best centers official nfl jerseys cheap in the NBA by the time he reaches his prime.”

Sounds incredible, right? There’s only one catch—Tjarks wasn’t talking about No. 6 pick Mohamed Bamba or $12.7 million man Nikola Vucevic. To cover all bases, he wasn’t referring to fellow Magic centers Timofey Mozgov or Khem Birch, either.hi-res-a6d9962a437f0b8236b63919aed8ce3b_crop_exact

No, Tjarks poured that praise onto last summer’s sixth pick, Jonathan Isaac, who might have his brightest future at a position occupied by four other players on the roster. Further muddling this mix, his current home is at the 4, where Aaron Gordon just orchestrated a breakout season so convincing that Orlando nfl authentic jerseys spent $84 million to secure his next four seasons.

Stockpiling young talent is generally fine for rebuilders, but how are the Magic ever going to align these puzzle pieces? It’s not like they can expect their floor generals to figure it out when D.J. Augustin, Jerian Grant and Isaiah Briscoe comprise one of the Association’s worst point guard groups.nfl authentic jerseys cheap

Vucevic needs to go, whether in a trade now or when his contract expires next summer. Mozgov and Birch are placeholders who should battle each other for mop-up duties. But Orlando must assess the long-term viability of the Gordon-Isaac-Bamba nfl jersey wholesale trio. Maybe there’s a minutes mix that keeps all three satisfied and effective, but there’s a decent chance the Magic will be forced to choose two keepers sooner rather than later.

Jabari Parker

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Team: Milwaukee Bucks

Age: 23

Type of Free Agency: Restricted

2017-18 Per-Game Stats: 12.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.3 blocks

2017-18 Advanced Metrics: 17.1 PER,custom nfl jerseys  minus-2.88 RPM, minus-26.83 TPA

Maybe it’s the lack of remaining money scattered throughout the NBA’s 30 organizations—a carryover effect from the 2016 spending bonanza. Perhaps teams are that scared of Jabari Parker’s injury history, which includes multiple ACL tears, and struggles for the Milwaukee Bucks after he returned to the floor following his latest malady.

But this Duke product’s short- and long-term scoring upside should still have someone buying in.

Parker didn’t excel in a smaller role during the 2017-18 season and left a bitter taste after his shooting woes in the first-round exit at the hands of the Boston Celtics. He’s still only 23 years old and just one year removed from his 2016-17 efforts: 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists while slashing 49.0/36.5/74.3. He was actually even better from beyond the rainbow this past go-round, connecting on 38.3 percent of those three-point hoists. customized nfl jerseys

And yet, no deals are emerging. Social-media hijinks also fail to foretell a reunion with the Bucks, and it’s hard to see a player this young and talented being forced to play for the qualifying offer before hitting unrestricted free agency next summer. Then again, general manager Jon Horst is singing a different story. nfl custom jerseys cheap

“We qualified him because we value him and we want to have the ability to keep him and work through that with him and his agent,” he said on a July 8 NBA TV broadcast, as transcribed by Brandon Molleur. “We’ve had great conversations. We’re in contact with him every day. I think the market will cheap custom nfl jerseys  dictate some of it, but we’ll continue to work on it and see how it turns out.”

Parker’s hometown Chicago Bulls could swoop in and offer him around $12 million annually to join their roster. The Brooklyn Nets could make a similar play. The Atlanta Hawks still have money. But is anyone willing to gamble heavily enough that the Bucks won’t match?

For now, the best bet remains the qualifying offer—Parker essentially betting on himself and counting on better luck with the injury imp from this point forward. cheap customized nfl jerseys

Metrics 101: Ranking the Biggest NBA Offseason Moves so Far

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Get excited about any additions your favorite NBA team has made during the 2018 offseason. Seriously. Do it, already!

This is the time of year for optimism. All incoming rookies are blank slates. New free-agency signings haven’t yet done anything wrong in new jerseys. Upside reigns supreme, nfl jerseys from china if only because no hard evidence points in other directions.

But after diving into the numbers and using them to inform our subjective order, we can safely say some offseason moves still project as more valuable than others.

As was the case in last year’s edition of this countdown, we’re only interested in the impact on the upcoming season; long-term aid isn’t relevant here, which makes it harder for rookies to rank among the top 10. To be clear, that’s “harder” but not impossible, which you’ll see when two first-year contributors make appearances. official nfl jerseys cheap

These 10 biggest moves are ranked by nfl authentic jerseys cheap the on-court rises or falls expected from their teams as a direct result of the decisions.

Departing from a team isn’t quite as impactful as joining a new one, since the organization left behind is typically either already operating at a low level, able to replace the production with a subsequent acquisition or ready to enter into a rebuilding period.

Plus, remaining positive this time of year is just more fun. nfl jersey wholesale

Nerlens Noel’s brief tenure with the Dallas Mavericks with filled with drama, relative ineffectiveness and plenty of time spent watching the action in warmups or street clothes. But a fresh start with the Oklahoma City Thunder, which comes on nothing more than the veteran’s minimum, per NBA.com’s David Aldridge, should allow him to regain his former luster. nfl jersey for cheap

This big man isn’t going to slot into the starting five. He won’t displace Steven Adams anytime soon (or ever), and his shooting limitations should prevent head coach Billy Donovan from deploying him at the 4 in a dual-center lineup. But the Thunder desperately needed a reliable rim-protector off the pine, and that’s exactly what Noel gives them—along with wide-ranging defensive skills that allowed him to post a career-best 4.5 defensive box plus/minus in 2017-18 even while struggling to find a rhythm in his minimal run.

ESPN.com’s defensive real plus/minus told a similar story.

Noel’s 2.36 DRPM allowed him to slot in at nfl jerseys cheap authentic No. 29 throughout the league, leaving him behind only Andre Roberson (4.34) on the Oklahoma City roster. Up next from last year’s crew? Dakari Johnson (2.1 in minimal time), Nick Collison (1.59 in 75 minutes) and Russell Westbrook (1.2).

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There’s what the Major League Baseball All-Star teams will probably look like, and then there’s what they should look like.

We’ve already covered the former. Now it’s time for the latter.authentic nfl jerseys cheap

Our goal is to determine which players the American League and National League would bring to Nationals Park on July 17 if the statistics were in charge. And by “the statistics,” we mean the average of players’ wins above replacement at Baseball Reference and FanGraphs plus other metrics to help break ties.

Here are the ground rules for players:

Position players must have made at least 150 plate appearances (see AL and NL qualifiers)
Starting pitchers must have made at least 10 starts (AL and NL) nfl jerseys for cheap
Relief pitchers must have made at least 20 appearances (AL and NL)
Players must be healthy or expected to be healthy by the All-Star break
There need not be a representative for every MLB team

And here’s how the rosters are comprised:

32 players per side
20 position players: a starting nine (including a handpicked DH for the NL) with a backup for each position (except designated hitter) and three wild cards
12 pitchers: eight starters and four relievers

Let’s take it away.

If the stats had their druthers, the AL starting lineup would look like this:

C: Yan Gomes, CLE (1.3 WAR)
1B: Matt Olson, OAK (2.0 WAR)
2B: Jose Altuve, HOU (3.8 WAR)
3B: Jose Ramirez, CLE (5.2 WAR)
SS: Francisco Lindor, CLE (4.5 WAR)
LF: Aaron Judge, NYY (3.7 WAR)
CF: Mike Trout, LAA (6.4 WAR)
RF: Mookie Betts, BOS (4.4 WAR)
DH: J.D. Martinez, BOS (3.1 WAR)

This starting nine mostly resembles the one that the fans want to see, save for a few exceptions.cheap nfl jerseys

One is at shortstop, where Manny Machado is notably absent. He has star power and big offensive numbers (.929 OPS and 19 home runs), but he’s been slumping, and his value is hurt by his well-below-average defense.

Another notable absence is Jose Abreu at first base. Like Machado, he’s also been slumping and doesn’t have much to offer in the field.

The only other disparity is at catcher, where fans have been pulling for Wilson Ramos. To their credit, Ramos’ .780 OPS is the best among qualified AL catchers. The catch is that Ramos is being held back by FanGraphs’ low valuations of his baserunning and defense.nfl jersey cheap

In place of Machado, it’s hard to argue against Francisco Lindor, who’s having yet another spectacular season both at the plate and in the field. For their parts, Matt Olson is rocking a solid .842 OPS since May 1, and Yan Gomes’ offense (.777 OPS) is all the way out of the pit it fell into in 2016.

Otherwise, nobody should need convincing that Jose Altuve, Jose Ramirez, Aaron Judge, Mike Trout, Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez deserve their spots.

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The Baltimore Ravens are apparently tinkering with some sort of two-quarterback, Joe Flacco-and-Lamar Jackson-on-the-same-field, Wildcat-option-gadget-wrinkle-trickeration package for this season.

Sounds exciting! It will baffle some opponents. It will get Jackson on the field quickly. It will make the Ravens offense more interesting, though showing commercials instead of the game would also make the Ravens offense more interesting.

It’s also a terrible mistake. A specialized Jackson package likely will trade a few highlights for clubhouse discord and a wasted opportunity for the rookie to quickly develop into Flacco’s not-too-eventual replacement. It could even slap Jackson with a label the Ravens’ first-round pick may cheap nike jerseys nfl never be able to peel off.

John Harbaugh and his offensive assistants have a long history with package quarterback experiments. So they should know better. Unfortunately, many of their past mistakes have been retconned into successes, making the Ravens eager to try again.

Ravens offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg was former Philadelphia coach Andy Reid’s assistant in 2009, when the Eagles signed Michael Vick. Fresh from prison and two years removed  cheap nfl jerseys from china nike from the NFL, Vick was used strictly as a trick-play specialist behind Donovan McNabb that year. He then reached the Pro Bowl and earned the Comeback Player of the Year award after McNabb was traded in 2010.

So everyone lived happily ever after, and the Vick package experiment was a great idea, right?

Wrong. The Eagles had groomed Kevin Kolb, not Vick, as McNabb’s replacement. Had Kolb not gotten injured in the 2010 season opener, the Eagles likely would have noodled with him as their starter all year. Vick’s comeback story happened almost by accident.cheap new nike nfl jerseys

That’s one of the biggest problems with the package role. It’s sticky. Once NFL coaches see a package quarterback, they have a hard time seeing a “real” cheap nfl jerseys nike china quarterback, even if Vick is the package guy and someone like Kolb is the traditional guy.

Mornhinweg and Vick reunited with the Jets in 2014, when Vick became a package quarterback behind Geno Smith. Vick typically entered the game for just one play, where he rushed for a few yards, threw an incomplete pass or took a sack. It did nothing for the Jets offense or Smith’s nike jersey nfl cheap forever-battered confidence.

Serbia

15. Serbia (+1)

There’s no guarantee it all clicks for Serbia, but if it does watch out. They’re a massive side who will dominate set pieces and have key difference-makers Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Aleksandar Mitrovic in great form.

They’re the second of our three dark-horse contenders.

14. Mexico (-1)

The 2018 World Cup will act as a sort of strange pathway from one generation to the next for Mexico. Thirty-nine-year-old Rafa Marquez will anchor the defence in his last tournament, while Hirving Lozano will spearhead the attack in his first.

They look good value to get out of their group, with the number of goals they’re capable of netting giving them the edge over Sweden, and from there who knows?

13. Denmark (+1)

Denmark hop above Mexico in our rankings after beating them 2-0 on Saturday, but there’s little to choose between the two. That Yussuf Poulsen found his goalscoring groove in the game is potentially important; it’s crucial the attacking onus does not solely fall on Christian Eriksen’s shoulders.authentic nfl jerseys

12. Poland (-1)

The news that Kamil Glik will miss the finals after sustaining an injury during training is a massive blow. Of all the pre-tournament ailments suffered across the 32 competing nations—and there’ve been too many, sadly—this is arguably the most impactful.

The White and Reds may still ride Robert Lewandowski’s coattails to success, but they’ll be far less resolute without their central-defensive man mountain.wholesale nfl jerseys

11. Colombia (-1)

Colombia opted to play just one tune-up game ahead of the World Cup finals, taking on Egypt on June 1 and drawing 0-0.nfl jerseys wholesale

That hardly seems like the ideal preparation—particularly given some teams have jammed in three friendlies during this period, for comparison—nfl jerseys china and things were made worse on Saturday by the ACL injury sustained by starting left-back Frank Fabra.

Los Cafeteros have depth in plenty of positions, but not that one. It’s a serious knock to their chances of upsetting the odds this summer.nfl wholesale jerseys

Sweden

20. Sweden (+2)

Sweden won’t wow anyone this tournament, but they’re capable of getting results—as evidenced by the play-off win over Italy, and their solid, if unspectacular, build-up to the finals.

They look third-strongest in Group F, but qualification isn’t out of the question. They’ll need to make an effort to score a few more goals than usual if they’re to usurp Mexico, though.

19. Morocco (+9)

If you’re looking for a potential group-stage upset, Morocco to qualify ahead of Portugal should be on your radar. They’re defensively excellent, have a coach in Herve Renard who knows how to eke out victories, and are close to a year unbeaten.

The Atlas Lions rarely concede, mix defensive quality (Medhi Benatia) with attacking zip (Hakim Ziyech) and are our first of three dark-horse candidates.cheap nfl jerseys china

18. Senegal (+5)

Perhaps results didn’t go their way during this preparation period, but what Senegal offered on the counter-attack against Croatia in their 2-1 defeat on Friday should scare anyone preparing to play them.nfl cheap jerseys

They defend crosses well and launch attacks quickly, feeding the ball to Sadio Mane and asking him to create. It’s a good strategy!

17. Switzerland (+7)

For Switzerland, see Sweden (20): They won’t blow you away with their football, but they can be solid when required and boast a couple of genuine difference-makers—Xherdan Shaqiri and Breel Embolo—in attack.nfl jerseys cheap china

The group they’ve landed in, alongside Serbia and Costa Rica, will be a gritty one, but that almost plays to their strengths.

16. Peru (+5)

Things are looking pretty rosy for Peru right now. They haven’t lost a game in over a year, have won five of their last six and have welcomed talismanic striker Paolo Guerrero back into the fold nfl jersey after his doping ban was temporarily lifted.nfl jerseys