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|Maybe Tell Authentic And Replica NFL Jerseys , just maybe, the worst is behind the Phoenix Suns.
Their 50th anniversary season was awful, even worse than the two that came before.
For the eighth season in a row, the Suns won’t make the playoffs. The win totals the past three seasons: 23, 24 and – this year 21. That 21-61 mark is the worst since Phoenix went 16-66 in its inaugural 1968-69 season.
The season devolved in the final months, with injuries depleting the already exceedingly young roster, leaving a contingent of G League transfers to fill out the lineup in the final days. The Suns lost a franchise-record 15 straight in one stretch.
Now, everyone involved is insisting, enough is enough.
”I’m done with not making the playoffs,” rising star Devin Booker said as the players cleaned out their lockers and conducted exit interviews Wednesday. ”I’m serious. This is probably my last year ever not making the playoffs. If that’s putting pressure on myself, I’m going to take this summer and work that hard so that it doesn’t happen again.”
His goal is ”turning the franchise around and getting it back how it used to be.”
8”You watch the highlights of Barkley, Nash and them and how alive the arena was,” Booker said. ”So one of my goals is to get it back that way.”
Booker Good Sellers For Fake NFL Jerseys , T.J. Warren and rookie Josh Jackson form the core of the young talent the Suns have accumulated. Dragan Bender and Marquese Chriss could be part of it, too, although their development has been uneven.
But Phoenix needs experienced players, and not just old guys to cheer on from the sidelines.
”The voice in the locker room or the voice when they’re teaching carries a lot more weight when the person is contributing,” interim coach Jay Triano said, ”not just there as a teacher. … They need those guys on the court to follow.”
General manager Ryan McDonough agrees the time is come to ratchet up investment. To begin with, Phoenix has the most ping pong balls in the May 15 lottery and a chance at the No. 1 overall pick. At worst, the Suns will draft No. 4. They will have one, and maybe two, more first-round picks.
”We’ll be one of five or six teams with more than $10 million in cap space,” McDonough said, ”and I think we have the ability to create significantly more if we want it.”
So the assets are there if they can be translated into needed players, and not teenagers 2018 Good Sellers For Fake NFL Jerseys , except that early first-round pick.
Three years of concentrating on acquiring this young talent is long enough, McDonough said.
”If you go beyond that I think the losing starts to set in and the guys start to become accustomed to that and the bar is lower,” he said. ”Next year we’re going to try to raise the bar. We’re going to try to raise our standards. We won’t be as young. We won’t have nearly as many young players as we had last year.”
A couple of things to consider after the Suns’ miserable season.
COACH SEARCH: McDonough said the search will begin immediately for a head coach with a list of five to 10 candidates in mind.
Triano would like the job. He took over after Earl Watson was fired just three games into the season.
McDonough said he would like to have a coach in place before the draft combine and lottery in mid-May.
BOOKER’S CONTRACT: The Suns would like to have Booker sign a maximum contract extension in the offseason and he’s open to the idea.
Triano knows that Booker is tired of losing and believes things will get better for his budding star with more experienced talent around him.
”He looks around the locker room and sees what it is and he knows that it’s time,” Triano said. ”I think the growth that he’s gone through individually as a leader and the capability he’s been able to show as a scorer has set the tone to make this an attractive place and to have him be the focal part of that. People around the league want to play with Devin Booker.”
KNIGHT IN WAITING: One of the biggest needs for Arizona is at point guard, and they’ve had one watching from the sidelines all season.
Brandon Knight, left over from the old days of three point guards with Eric Bledsoe and Isaiah Thomas, missed the entire season with a torn ACL. Once stuck at the end of the bench with no playing time when he was able to go, he’s being talked about as the starter alongside Booker next year.
”As a competitor, as a winner, I just love to play the game,” Knight said. ”I had the game taken away from me by the injuries and due to other things. … I’m just trying to help the Suns in any way I can.”
The Tennessee Titans' draft strategy underscores how close they believe they are to competing for a Super Bowl berth.
Convinced of their depth elsewhere, the Titans traded up to select defensive players they had long targeted and largely ignored their offense .
They ended up with just four draft picks 鈥?the fewest of any NFL team this year and the least in franchise history.
"Some of these names we drafted are guys we talked about in February," Titans coach Mike Vrabel said.
Vrabel was hired in January to improve a team that went 9-7 and lost to New England in the AFC divisional round after earning its first playoff victory since January 2004 .
"I think we are a more talented roster now 5 Ways To Tell Authentic And Replica NFL Jerseys (Real VS Fake) , and it's our job," general manager Jon Robinson said . "That's our job, to try to get as many good football players on the team as possible and let them compete for spots."
They didn't take a single offensive player until drafting Pac-12 career passing leader Luke Falk of Washington State in the sixth round with the 199th overall pick.
The Titans' defensive picks included Alabama linebacker Rashaan Evans in the first round, Boston College outside linebacker Harold Landry in the second round and Arizona defensive back Dane Cruikshank in the fifth. The Titans traded up and gave up draft picks to get each of those three players.
That represents a huge change for a team that had taken an offensive player with its first pick every year from 2011-17.
Tennessee already had addressed its major offensive concerns in free agency with the additions of running back Dion Lewis , guard/tackle Kevin Pamphile and guard Xavier Su'a-Filo .
Evans and Landry boost the front seven, the Titans' top draft priority with Derrick Morgan and Brian Orakpo entering the final years of their contracts and Avery Williamson having already left for the New York Jets as a free agent.
Cruikshank adds depth to the secondary for a defense that ranked 25th against the pass last season. The Titans already released veteran safety Da'Norris Searcy in March, leaving their depth thin behind All-Pro safety Kevin Byard fellow starter Johnathan Cyprien. Tennessee did sign cornerback Malcolm Butler away from New England in March.
Other things to know about the Titans' draft:
Falk expected to get taken much earlier. The former walk-on set Pac-12 records in yards passing, total offense, touchdown passes, pass completions and pass attempts.
"I think just the word that came to mind would just be 'shocked,'" Falk said. "It wasn't exactly how I thought it would play out, but I'm very grateful. I'm grateful that a team in Tennessee took a chance on me and is giving me an opportunity to compete and go in there and help the football team."
Falk's two sisters are aspiring country singers who live in Nashville. Falk gives the Titans someone to groom as a possible backup to Marcus Mariota after signing veteran Blaine Gabbert in March.
The 6-foot-4 Falk went to the Titans with the 199th overall pick. That's the same pick New England used on Tom Brady back in 2000. Falk considers himself a big Brady fan.
"I just think that we kind of have the same similarities and style of play," Falk said. "We are not the most mobile guys. We do stuff in the pocket NFL Blog , creating throws in a small space. We are accurate. He's the best to do it and somebody I look up to and just try to model my game after. It's a huge coincidence that it is pick 199 and Tennessee took a shot on me."
Although he spent much of his college career at cornerback, Cruikshank says he could play anywhere in the secondary and that NFL teams were primarily viewing him as a safety. The Titans are listing him merely as a defensive back for now and praised Cruikshank's versatility .
"Whatever they need me to play, I'm willing to play," Cruikshank said. "I feel like I can do it all."
PICKING FROM THE BEST
Cruikshank, who is 6-1 and 209 pounds, picked off three passes for Arizona last season. Two of his interceptions came against first-round draft picks Sam Darnold of Southern California and Josh Rosen of UCLA .
WHAT ABOUT RECEIVER?
The Titans didn't draft a single wideout and will lean heavily on a batch of young receivers to complement Rishard Matthews, who is entering his seventh NFL season. Tennessee didn't bring back Eric Decker and signed Michael Campanaro, who's more of a special teams player with 31 combined receptions in four seasons.
That leaves Corey Davis, the fifth pick overall a year ago, along with Tajae Sharpe and Taywan Taylor. Sharpe spent last year on injured reserve, and Taylor is entering his second NFL season.
AP Pro Football Writer Teresa M. Walker contributed to this report.