Mass. College Football: Locals Invited To NFL Rookie Mini Camps

Merrimack's Isaiah Voegeli signed his undrafted free agent contract with the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday! (Photo Credit: Merrimack College Athletics)

Merrimack’s Isaiah Voegeli signed his undrafted free agent contract with the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday! (Photo Credit: Merrimack College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan

As noted on our blog yesterday, Bentley University graduate student Nick Halloran was invited to this weekend’s New England Patriots’ Rookie Mini Camp.

“Just amazing news, not a better way to start the day,” Halloran told the Boston Globe on Tuesday.

Halloran isn’t the only local college football player to earn an invite to a rookie mini camp this weekend as Framingham State’s James Muirhead will attempt to earn a spot with the St. Louis Rams, while Middlebury College’s Ryan Moores, who prepped at Governor’s Academy, will tryout with the Atlanta Falcons.

“I’m braced for it,” Muirhead told the Brockton Enterprise on Tuesday. “I understand what’s going to happen. But you know what? I’m not there to make any friends. I’m there to compete. I’m going there to get a job.”

Merrimack College’s Isaiah Voegeli became the fourth player in program history to sign with a professional team as the Hyannis native inked his name on an undrafted free agent contract Monday with the Philadelphia Eagles.

“I am so grateful for this opportunity,” Voegeli said in the college’s release.  “I can’t thank head coach Dan Curran enough for his help and guidance and preparation to get me to this point. This is a dream come true that I’ve dreamt about since I was 7, to just have a shot and I’ve been blessed this opportunity.”

Voegeli will leave the North Andover campus as the all-time receiver in multiple receiving categories, which includes catches (211) and yards (3,554). He also ranks second in program history with 34 touchdown receptions, too.

Prior to this year’s NFL Draft, the Boston Herald reported that Muirhead, Voegeli and Moores, along with Assumption College’s Nick Haag and Boston College’s Jim Noel worked out with the Falcons, Patriots and New Orleans Saints.

New England To Face St. Louis In London

By NoontimeSports.com 

UPDATE: 9AM Friday, Jan. 20, 2012 – Sources have confirmed that the New England Patriots will indeed travel across the pond next season to face the St. Louis Rams.

8AM Friday, Jan. 20, 2012 – According to ProFootballTalk.com, as well as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, it’s believed that the New England Patriots will travel to London, England next season to face the St. Louis Rams.

Over the past few years, the NFL has played one game overseas at Wembley Stadium, and yes, the Patriots have already made an appearance across the pond when they defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2009.

NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, has expressed previously that he’d like to have one squad make London their home in the future, and according to sources, it’s believed  that the Rams could become Great Britain’s team.

Rams owner  Stan Kroenke is quite familiar with London, especially since he overseas an English football club, too.

Daily Noontime – January 20, 2012

Nathan Horton and the Boston Bruins capped off their road swing with a 4-1 victory on Thursday! (Photo Credit: Zimbio.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s Friday, wahoo! Here are some headlines and news to kick-start the final day of the workweek, enjoy!

* The Boston Bruin ended their four-game road trip with a 2-2 record, as they defeated the New Jersey Devils, 4-1. The Black and Gold notched four goals in the third period, as Andrew Ference, Nathan Horton, Gregory Campbell and Chris Kelly all scored for Boston, while Tim Thomas deflected 30 saves between the pipes. Boston will return to the ice on Saturday afternoon when they host the New York Rangers at the TD Garden.

* Boston Celtics President of Operations Danny Ainge told WEEI, (Boston Sports Radio) on Thursday that he was stating the obvious about dealing the “Big-3.” Although, he did admit if there is a decent deal on the table, he’ll most likely pull the trigger.

* Rajon Rondo told the media on Thursday that he’s doubtful for Friday’s contest against the Phoenix Suns, which means Avery Bradley, will most likely be the starting guard.

* According to various reports – the New England Patriots are “believed” to be the AFC foe that’ll face the St. Louis Rams next year in London, England. The Patriots last played overseas in 2009 when they defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

NFL News: Raheem Morris Fired, Rams and Colts Make Changes

Raheem Morris and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished the season with 10 consecutive losses! (Photo Credit: BucStop.com)

By Brian Willwerth 

On Monday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers began a much-needed housecleaning. They fired head coach Raheem Morris. All of his assistants were canned, too.

It was pretty clear to, well, everyone that Morris had lost this team. A promising 4-2 season ended up as a 4-12 disappointment. Ten consecutive losses – many of them of the blowout variety, including Sunday’s hilarious, (and I mean that sarcastically) 45-24 drubbing at the hands of the Falcons. The score was 42-0 before halftime.

The 10-game losing streak matches the team’s longest ever in a single season, back in 1977. Over the final ten games, the Bucs gave up 31 or more points seven times.

Morris went 17-31 in his three seasons, and that includes last year’s surprising 10-6 campaign.

The defense allowed 494 points this season. Yes, that’s dead-last in the NFL. No other Tampa Bay team has allowed as much.  They gave up an average of 156 yards per game on the ground. Yes, that’s dead-last in the NFL. They were third from the bottom in total yards allowed per game, (394.) Only New England and Green Bay ranked lower in that category – no joking.

Quarterback Josh Freeman threw only six interceptions last year. This year? 22.

On the subject of turnovers, guess where the Bucs rank in that category? Yes, dead-last.

Other NFL News: 

* The St. Louis Rams fired their head coach Steve Spagnuolo, and general manager Bill Devaney. The Rams went 2-14 this season, as well as tied for the worst record in the NFL with the Indianapolis Colts.

* Speaking of the Colts, they’re shaking things up as well. They’ve fired vice chairman Bill Polian and general manager Chris Polian. Indy, like St. Louis, won only two games this season, and will have the first pick in the NFL draft.

Breaking Down The NFC Playoff Picture

Photo Credit: Bleacher Report

By Brian Willwerth 

With one week to go in the regular season, here’s the lowdown on the NFC playoff picture….

The Green Bay Packers will be the No. 1 seed. They’ve won the North, and have clinched home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

The San Francisco 49ers are champions of the West. They can clinch the No. 2 seed and first-round bye if they beat the Rams in St. Louis on Sunday.

The New Orleans Saints won the South last night, with Drew Brees’ record-breaking performance.  They can still get a bye if they beat Carolina, and San Francisco falters.

The  Detroit Lions and Atlanta Falcons are the wild cards. That’s etched in stone.

The real drama lies in the NFC East, where the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants will face off in a winner-take-all showdown in primetime at the Meadowlands. The winner wins the division; the loser is out. Think NBC is licking its chops?