Excite goes La LaExcite goes La LaExcite Holidays is thrilled to celebrate the launch of their L.A. campaign, in partnership with Dis-cover Los Angeles.Kicking off today, the campaign will run for two weeks and will showcase all that the City of Angels has to offer. From the glitz and the glamour, to the thriving culinary scene, the incredible cultural offering (with more museums than any other U.S. city!) to the world-class entertainment and breathtaking scenery, the campaign has something to offer every type of traveller.To get into the L.A. vibe, exclusive events are being held to give agents a sneak peek of what their clients can expect on a trip to the West Coast. Gold Coast is up first, with agents taking part in yoga by the beach followed by a delicious fresh breakfast at a popular beachside café, show-casing the feel of L.A.’s iconic beach cities. Not to miss out on all the fun, Melbourne agents will be treated to a hip hop yoga session followed by a delicious dinner, all in a unique nature-inspired location.Excite Holidays are also extremely excited to offer agents the chance to win a trip to L.A. and experience life stateside. The trip will be awarded to the agent with the highest number of nights booked in Los Angeles during the campaign period. The lucky winner will receive a return flight to L.A, as well as three nights at the luxurious Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and two nights at the stunning Hotel Erwin Venice Beach, plus three tours, including Cupcake Tour of Beverly Hills, Hollywood Hills Hiking Tour, and Hollywood Behind the Scenes Walking Tour. Agents also have the opportunity to earn 500 bonus rewards points for each night booked and paid for in the se-lected destination.La La Land, get ready! Source = Excite Holidays
(Right) Vietjet Vice President, Dinh Viet Phuong and (centre)Airbus Chief Commercial Officer, Eric Schulz at the signing of 50 new A321neo single aisle aircraftVietjet and Airbus Ink Deal for 50 A321neo AircraftThe recent conclusion of the 2018 Farnborough International Airshow – one of the world’s premier aviation events saw the signing of big order contracts between Vietjet and two world-leading aircraft manufacturers Airbus and Boeing.New-age airline Viejet signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus for the purchase of an additional 50 A321neo single aisle aircraft. The agreement worth USD6.5 billion was signed by Vietjet Vice President, Dinh Viet Phuong and Airbus Chief Commercial Officer, Eric Schulz. The additional aircraft will be used to meet the airline’s development demand as well as optimize its efficiency and operation range.Vietjet has a long-standing relationship with Airbus, collaborating on various projects ranging from safety, techniques and operation management. Currently, the Full Flight Simulator located in Ho Chi Minh City – a joint-collaboration between Vietjet and Airbus – is well under way to its final phases and equipment installation which will be ready for operation this October.The latest agreement will see the carrier’s backlog of orders for the A320 Family rise to 171 aircraft, including 123 A321neo and other A321ceo. The delivery will be from now until 2025.This follows Vietjet’s recent MoU signing with Boeing for 100 B737 MAX aircraft. Worth USD12.7 billion, the new order with Boeing is aimed at serving the carrier’s development of airline alliances across the Asia Pacific region and worldwide, and further enhance the airline’s fleet synchronization, modernization and fuel efficiency up to 2025. The deal is also expected to increase bilateral trade turnover between Vietnam and the United States, the home of Boeing.As part of this contract, Boeing Commercial Airplanes has committed to deploying a series of strategic partnership programs to develop modern aviation service ecology in Vietnam, inclusive of Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul (MRO), training for pilots, technicians, engineers, and more, as well as special programs for enhancing the management and automation capabilities for airlines in Vietnam and the Vietnam aviation industry as a whole.“We are honored to deepen our strong partnership with Vietjet as they become our newest 737 MAX 10 customers. Today’s agreement for a repeat order from Vietjet validates the best-in-class capabilities of the 737 MAX family of airplanes,” said Kevin McAllister, President & CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “With this agreement, we take another major step in growing our partnership with Vietjet, one that continues to contribute to the trade relationship between Vietnam and the United States. This agreement also grows Boeing’s presence and partnerships across Asia Pacific, developing win-win partnerships in a region with tremendous development potential.”Source = Vietjet
It’s our maiden participation at OTM 2017 and we have observed good quality of trade visitors. The level of this exhibition and its outreach has been significant for us. The number of participating countries has also been quiet impressive. We look forward to participate in the future editions of OTM and promote Bahrain as a GCC country.
Lying third to Bangkok and London as the most visited city in the world, Paris is on the verge on improving its infrastructure, architecture, security and technologies to be positioned as the most visited city and be the best tourist attraction. Source: BBC
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing, Technology July 3, 2012 428 Views Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2012-07-03 Abby Gregory New Managing Sales Director Appointed at Allonhill “”Allonhill””:www.allonhill.com/ is welcoming a new managing director of sales. [IMAGE]The independent, third-party review firm recently announced that Shelly Schwieso will join Allonhill’s roster of industry professionals.[COLUMN_BREAK] Specializing in mortgage due diligence and credit risk management, Allonhill will depend on Schwieso to develop and maintain relationships for the company’s due diligence, securitization, and risk management services. Additionally, Schwieso will be focused on expanding Allonhill’s presence in the Midwestern region.Prior to joining Allonhill, Schwieso was part of “”BMO Harris Bank””:www.harrisbank.com/ in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she served as a state manager for mortgage product sales. Schwieso, however, is likely best known for her role in co-founding “”Wells Fargo’s””:https://www.wellsfargo.com/ private mortgage banking division.””We are excited to be adding an industry veteran like Shelly to Allonhill’s sales team”” said Allonhill’s CEO and founder Sue Allon, “”Shelly brings years of financial services industry experience which will provide critical insight as we develop new products and expand existing services to our growing client base in the Midwest.”” Share
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing First-time claims for unemployment insurance for the week ending September 7 plunged 31,000 to 292,000, the lowest level since March 2006, the “”Labor Department””:http://www.ows.doleta.gov/press/2013/091213.asp reported Thursday. Economists expected the number of claims to edge up to 330,000 from the 323,000 originally reported for the week ending August 31. The number of filings for that week was unchanged.[IMAGE]The four-week moving average of first-time filings fell to 321,250, the lowest level since October 2007.The strong numbers were affected in part by the Labor Day holiday as well as positive, low seasonal adjustment factors. The adjustment factors will begin to increase next week, and state offices will have had a full workweek to process claims that are filed by phone or via the Internet.Continuing claims for jobless benefits–reported on a one-week lag–fell 73,000 to 2,871,000 for the week ending August 31, the lowest level since February 2008. The number of continuing claims for the week ending August 24 was revised down to 2,944,000 from the originally reported 2,951,000.The four-week moving average of continuing claims dropped 24,750 to 2,953,000, the lowest since May 2008.The week-over-week drop in initial claims was the largest since first-time claims fell 40,000 for the week ending April 6. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, two states installed new computer systems delaying processing of claims, contributing to the sharp decline.Initial claims generally reflect layoffs, while continuing claims reflect hiring. A decrease in continuing claim suggests employers have a collective need for more workers, while an increase in first-time claims suggests companies may be overstaffed.The claims reports will not have a direct impact on the employment situation release–which includes the unemployment rate–for September to be released on [COLUMN_BREAK]October 4. That release will be based on employment and jobs data for the week of the month including the 12th calendar day. Still, this week’s claims data could, if sustained, mark an important shift in labor trends, although workers hired for summer jobs at retailers or restaurants and hotels could swell unemployment ranks when those jobs end with the close of the summer. Retail and restaurant and hotel jobs represented nearly half of the increase in employment in the last three months.Nonetheless, the drop in initial claims could embolden the Federal Open Market Committee to begin to taper its monetary policy stimulus when it meets next week by cutting back on its purchase or mortgage-backed securities and or Treasuries.The Labor Department said the total number of people claiming benefits in all programs for the week ending August 24 was 4,272,741, a decrease of 122,971 from the previous week. There were 5,391,420 persons claiming benefits in all programs in the comparable week in 2012. No state was triggered “”on”” the Extended Benefits program during the week ending August 24. Extended benefits have been affected by the federal government sequestration. States responded to the reduced federal funds by either cutting the number of weeks of eligibility or lowering weekly payments.According to the Bureau Labor Statistics, 11,316,000 persons were officially considered unemployed in August, with 4,290,000 “”long-term”” unemployed–that is, out of work for at least 27 weeks. Of those individuals counted as unemployed, 7.04 million were not receiving any form of government unemployment insurance for the week ending August 24, up from 6.92 million one week earlier.The Labor Department reported 1,454,824 persons claiming Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) benefits for the week ending August 24, a decrease of 39,918 from the prior week. There were 2,223,071 persons claiming EUC in the comparable week in 2012. EUC benefits this year were directly threatened by the federal budget sequester. According to the Labor Department detail, also reported on a one-week lag, largest increases in initial claims for the week ending August 31 were in Oregon (+1,085), Pennsylvania (+725), Nebraska (+609), New Jersey (+537), and Kansas (+394), while the largest decreases were in California (-4,988), Nevada (-2,125), New York (-1,259), Georgia (-1,221), and Florida (-884)._Hear Mark Lieberman Friday on P.O.T.U.S. radio, Sirius-XM 124, at 6:20 a.m. Eastern._ Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bureau of Labor Statistics Federal Reserve Investors Jobs Labor Department Lenders & Servicers Mark Lieberman Mortgage-Backed Securities Payrolls Processing Service Providers Unemployment 2013-09-12 Mark Lieberman September 12, 2013 439 Views Unemployment,Initial Jobless Claims At 7 1/2-Year Low Share
Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Capital Economics Confidence Consumer spending Investors Jobs Lenders & Servicers Service Providers 2013-12-11 Tory Barringer in Data December 11, 2013 420 Views Share Consumer Sentiment Outpaces Expectations in Preliminary Report Strengthened labor numbers and hopeful stock market indicators proved to be positive influences for consumer sentiment in early December.[IMAGE]The “”University of Michigan/Thomson Reuters Index of Consumer Sentiment””:http://press.sca.isr.umich.edu/ climbed to a five-month high of 82.5 in a preliminary report, increasing more than seven points over November’s final reading and beating a consensus forecast of 75.5.Both of the components measuring confidence in current and future conditions increased. The Current Conditions Index (normally affected by job market conditions) rose to its own five-month high of 97.9 from November’s 88.0, while the expectations index increased to a four-month peak of 72.7 from 66.8.While the first December report might reflect heightened optimism for the economy and labor conditions, Amna Asaf, an economist for macroeconomic research firm “”Capital Economics””:https://www.capitaleconomics.com/, says the increase wasn’t actually all that dramatic when put into context.””Seasonal factors also probably played a role,”” Asaf explained. “”The index is unadjusted and our calculations suggest that seasonal factors tend to add 1.5 points to confidence each December. Indeed, on seasonally adjusted terms, the rise in the headline index was slightly modest.””Nevertheless, the report reinforces confidence that consumption growth is on the rise after a slower third quarter and “”provides more evidence that the economic recovery is strengthening,”” Asaf said.
August 21, 2016 542 Views Riding the highest share of first-time homebuyers in four years (33 percent), existing-home sales shot up in June to an annual rate of 5.57 million, the highest annual rate for any one month in more than nine years (5.79 million in February 2009).Will existing-home sales be able to sustain the momentum and rise to new highs in July? The industry will find out on Wednesday, August 24, when the National Association of Realtors publishes its July 2016 existing-home sales report.A lingering inventory shortage suggests that existing-home sales will continue to flourish—what IS available is not going to last long on the market.“Though June’s existing home sales numbers show that we’re about 95 percent back to the pre-recession average, there are many more households in the U.S. looking for homes than in the early 2000s,” Trulia Chief Economist Ralph McLaughlin said. “As such, a lack of supply continues to hold back homebuyers. The month’s supply of existing homes in June 2016 was the lowest since June 2005. Homebuyers are finding little relief as the housing market recovery marches on. A silver lining from tight inventory is that homes are selling faster, which benefits agents and sellers. Existing home sales per agent ticked up to the highest level since June 2015.”In spite of the ongoing supply issues, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said the first half of 2016 was solid for homebuying.“Existing sales rose again last month as more traditional buyers and fewer investors were able to close on a home despite many competitive areas with unrelenting supply and demand imbalances,” Yun said. “Sustained job growth as well as this year’s descent in mortgage rates is undoubtedly driving the appetite for home purchases.”New Home Sales—HUD/Census Bureau, Tuesday, August 23, 10 a.m. ESTThe HUD/Census Bureau report on new home sales for July will be released on Tuesday, August 23. Like existing-home sales, new home sales hit their highest point in June since the last decade.New home sales were up to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 592,000 in June, which was 3.5 percent higher than in May and 25.4 percent higher than June 2015’s rate—the highest rate since February 2008.“This is a continued sign that demand for homes remains solid and aptly reflects increasing homebuilder confidence,” McLaughlin said. “The share of all home sales composed of new homes ticked upward to 10.6 percent in June, as new home sales continue to slowly ease the crunch of low existing inventory.”This Week’s ScheduleTuesday, August 23New Home Sales for July 2016, HUD/Census Bureau, 10 a.m. ESTWednesday, August 24House Prince Index (HPI) for June 2016, Federal Housing Finance Agency, 9 a.m. ESTExisting-Home Sales for July 2016, National Association of Realtors, 10 a.m. ESTFriday, August 26GDP, 2nd Estimate for Q2, Bureau of Economic Analysis, 8:30 a.m ESTConsumer Sentiment for August 2016, University of Michigan Consumer Survey Center, 10 a.m. EST in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News Existing-Home Sales Housing Market New Home Sales 2016-08-21 Seth Welborn Share The Week Ahead: Can New and Existing-Home Sales Keep it Up?
January 3, 2017 710 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News It’s Official: Arch Capital Acquires United Guaranty Share Arch Capital Group Private Mortgage Insurance United Guaranty Corp. 2017-01-03 Seth Welborn Arch Capital Group Ltd. (ACGL) can move forward with its plans to expand its footprint in the private mortgage insurance industry with the announcement of the completion of the acquisition of United Guaranty Corporation (UCG) from American International Group Inc (AIG).Based in Bermuda, ACGL reported approximately $8.24 billion in capital as of September 30, 2016. The acquisition allows Arch to further the diversification of its business profile and customer base and expand Arch’s existing private mortgage insurance operations by combining UCG’s position as a leader in the private mortgage insurance industry in the U.S. with the financial strength and history of innovation of ACGL, according to the announcement from ACGL.The acquisition was originally announced in August and completed at the end of 2016. Arch agreed to pay AIG approximately $3.4 billion in a combination of cash and securities at closing.“We are extremely pleased to complete this transaction, which will enable our company to continue to provide a strong and diversified source of private capital to the U.S. mortgage insurance and housing finance markets,” said Constantine (Dinos) Iordanou, Chairman and CEO of ACGL. “We believe the impressive operational, managerial and risk management expertise of Arch, together with the talented professionals joining us from UGC, will enable us to provide our clients with the best products and services available anywhere in the industry.”According to ACGL, expanding its mortgage insurance sector in the U.S. complements the company’s critical specialty and insurance businesses. With the diversity across product lines furthered by the acquisition, ACGL will be able to deploy capital to the areas offering the best opportunity, according to the announcement.ACGL’s U.S. primary mortgage insurance operations will be headquartered in North Carolina with significant operations in California and will be overseen by David Gansberg, President and CEO of Arch U.S. MI Holdings. Gansberg will report to Global Mortgage Group CEO Andrew Rippert, who will be responsible for ACGL’s global mortgage insurance and reinsurance operations, according to the announcement.“We are gratified that Arch U.S. MI will be led by experienced professionals in Andrew Rippert and David Gansberg and welcome our new colleagues from UGC,” said Marc Grandisson, President and COO of ACGL. “Over the past several months, teams at Arch and UGC have been working together to ensure a successful integration of our combined operations and a seamless transition for our clients. Our combined mortgage group looks forward to further strengthening its leadership position in the development of innovative products and services to meet the ever-evolving needs of our clients and the housing finance system.”
February 27, 2017 534 Views in Featured, Media, News LenderLive Network LLC recently reached a definitive agreement with PHH Mortgage Corp. to assume its private label fulfillment operations in Jacksonville, Florida.For the uninitiated, PHH late last year announced that it had had its fill of the private label fulfillment business, opting to gracefully bow out of the sector and then turn over its operations to LenderLive. The pair’s freshly inked agreement, approved by the boards of both companies and all other appropriate parties, is expected to facilitate a smooth changeover for both PHH employees and clients. After the deal closes, the transitioning associates will become LenderLive employees, and the Jacksonville operations center will be rebranded as LenderLive.”We are excited about the opportunity of adding a significant number of talented mortgage professionals and establishing a new operations center for LenderLive in Jacksonville,” said Rick Seehausen, LenderLive CEO. “The arrangement accelerates our long-stated imperative of driving scale and operating leverage in our private label Mortgage Solutions business.”Under the agreement, PHH will outsource loan processing, underwriting, and closing activities to LenderLive until the contracts with its current clients served out of Jacksonville have been transitioned and/or completed. LenderLive will service these accounts from the operations center in Jacksonville and intends to hire 250 to 300 PHH staffers to work from that locale. Throughout this year, clients requiring outsourced fulfillment services will be transitioned to LenderLive. Another benefit of the agreement: The Jacksonville operations center, a capacious piece of real estate capable of supporting some 700 employees, will allow LenderLive to expand its operations to meet the demand for services from its current and future clientele.“We look forward to welcoming our new associates and demonstrating the benefits of our platform and business model to PHH clients,” Seehausen added. “This is a win-win for everyone involved.” LenderLive Takes On PHH’s Private Label Ops LenderLive Network Inc. PHH Rick Seehausen themreport 2017-02-27 Staff Writer Share
in Headlines, News, Technology MRG Compliance Expert to Speak at Industry Events September 14, 2017 565 Views Compliance Compliance Services Compliance Services Providers Mortgage Industry Compliance MRG 2017-09-14 Krista Franks Brock Marsha Williams, a compliance expert at Mortgage Resources Group (MRG) will speak at two industry events this month.Williams will discuss “What’s Happening in Residential Mortgage Lending?” at the Texas Association of Bank Counsel Convention in Bastrop, Texas, which takes place September 21-22.She will also be part MBA’s Risk Management, QA and Fraud Prevention Forum in Miami, September 24-26.Williams serves as senior attorney at MRG, which has been offering mortgage industry compliance solutions for more than 35 years.Williams has held several prominent positions in industry organizations and has a long tenure in the industry. She currently serves on the Governing Committee of the Conference on Consumer Finance Law and on the State Bar of Texas Business Law Section’s Consumer Financial Services Committee.In the past she has served on the Board of the National Conference of State Housing Boards, was appointed to the Board of the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, held the position of president of the Dallas Mortgage Bankers Association, and served on the MBA Board of Directors, among other positions. Williams is a member of the American and Dallas Bar Associations.“In today’s constantly changing regulatory environment, MRG’s compliance expertise is in high demand,” MRG stated with the announcement of Williams’ speaking engagements. “MRG’s team of compliance experts recognizes the business imperative of proactively monitoring and continuously analyzing regulatory changes, trends, and impending regulations that impact your business.” Share
The Peninsula Beijing’s Suite Surprise package is offering guests a 50% discount off the Rack Rate, plus daily breakfast at Jing Restaurant for two and flexible check-in and check-out times across Junior Suite, Executive Suite, Premier Suite and Beijing Suite accommodation. Valid for booking until 31 December 2017, for stays until 31 December 2017.*See T&Cs Peninsula Beijing
TravelManagers recently sent eight personal travel managers (PTMs) to experience the excitement of Las Vegas, on a four-night, five-day whirlwind famil hosted by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, in conjunction with Delta Airlines.To qualify for the famil, which was exclusively available to TravelManagers, PTMs participated in a Las Vegas-focused incentive. According to TravelManagers’ Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, the purpose of the famil was to present PTMs with a variety of properties and experiences that lend themselves to high value customers.“Contrary to the infamous expression, ‘what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,’, our PTMs have come home from the famil with invaluable product and destination knowledge which they are happy to share with colleagues and clients, to ensure that they in turn are equipped to make the best use of their time and money.”PTMs Tracy Cosgriff, Sue Wright and Carolyn Burgmann, on The Stratosphere Hotel’s heart-stopping ‘Insanity’ ride, which extends out 20m from the edge of the hotel’s tower to suspend its riders over 260m above ground.The itinerary included property inspections across iconic hotels including Treasure Island, the Hard Rock Hotel, the Golden Nugget and Trump International Hotel. The group also had time to experience very-Vegas offerings such asattending an Elvis-themed wedding at the Graceland Wedding Chapel, riding the world’s highest observation wheel at Caesar’s, and delving into the world of organised crime and law enforcement at the Mob Museum.Lyndy Burston, TravelManagers’ representative for Werribee in Victoria, says the various dining experiences the group enjoyed during the time in Las Vegas was a major highlight.“I would highly recommend the fabulous Wicked Spoon buffet at the Cosmopolitan, and we also had a beautiful meal at Smith & Wollensky Steak House in the Venetian Hotel.”Other fabulous famil elements ranged from a ‘City Lights’ helicopter tour with champagne, to a half-day Pink Jeep tour to the Hoover Dam.“I hadn’t been to Vegas in more than fifteen years,” said PTM Karen Christie, representative for Woody Point, QLD. “I enjoyed every moment – you just have to go in with your eyes and mind open, walk the streets, soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the amazing sights.”The eight participating PTMs were accompanied by TravelManagers’ National Partnership Office representative: Marketing Manager, Tania Myles. Chris Tudehope from Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and Christine Poole from Delta Airlines were also along for the ride. TOP IMAGE: (Front L-R) TravelManagers’ Lisa Metzl, Tracy Cosgriff, Carolyn Burgmann, Karen Christie, Christine Poole, Sylvia Holland, Sue Wright, Lyndy Burston. (Back L- R) Tania Myles, Bianca Hamilton, Chris Tudehope Las Vegas Convention and Tourist Authority FamilsLas VegasPTMsTravelManagers
Top Stories John Skelton must start fast. Starting fast means moving the chains. Moving the chains means Skelton is most likely completing passes on third-down. Completing passes on third-down means John Skelton is seeing coverage, reading coverage and making accurate throws. I want to see Big Red Skelton move the chains and complete passes, particularly on third-down. And I’d like to see him do it in the first-quarter. Honestly, I don’t even care if they score points early; there is a bigger wave that needs to be navigated. If the Cards are able to move the ball early and convert a few third-downs, John Skelton’s confidence will increase dramatically. And this is exactly what this young man needs: confidence, to see himself perform and be successful early in games. Skelton is the kind of guy where pressure runs off his back like grease from a double pepperoni pizza; but he’s not superhuman. There are limits to a man’s constitution and experiencing success is the surest way to eliminate the dark shadows that creep into the center of one’s mind and cover his heart with doubt. The tangible act of the chain-gang moving the sticks means John Skelton is doing his job and all that it entails. From the macro, it means he’s quarterbacking a football team at the highest level our species can generate and doing it with aplomb; from the micro it means he’s completing the pass. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Did you get all that, John? This was the kind of thing that eluded Skelton a year ago. And this is the kind of thing that cannot happen again if the Cardinals want to win games. And although I’m about to reject everything that follows and it makes me nauseas to say, playing quarterback well in the National Football League often times has a residual effect that cannot be measured by human hands but is as tangible and poignant as the lines on the field: how a quarterback plays impacts how a team plays.I think I’m going to hurl.If John Skelton plays well, particularly early, it will fill the hearts and minds of players with hope and hope is a wonderful motivator in the game of football. Players should never consider their collective plight when competing in the Bloodsport…but many do. Unfortunately, players are mercenaries and demonstrate many of the same characteristics of those that have camped along the Danube and sacked cities throughout history. If players see reward for their risk they become more focused, they concentrate better and play with abandon, knowing there is booty and bounty to be had. The confidence level on the sideline soars when quarterbacks produce.Big Red Skelton needs to call the plays correctly, get a good pre-snap read, see coverage, read coverage, make good decisions, be accurate, complete the pass, protect the ball, elude the rush, extend the play, move the chains, control field position, manage the offense, quarterback this team, lead this team and…start fast. There are things I’ll be looking for when the Cardinals host the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sunday. The usual suspects like turnovers, penalties, mental errors and red zone conversions will always be integral components to winning football games, but the dynamic of this game has a trend that intrigues me more than the others. John Skelton seemed incapable of playing well early in games last season. Although he was 5-2 (6-2, really) as a starter and didn’t lose a game he started at University of Phoenix Stadium, his slow beginnings often times put the Cardinals far away from the finish line, requiring a napping hare to win the race and the game. Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Comments Share D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away
Well surprise, surprise.Just a week after Ken Whisenhunt stayed with rookie quarterback Ryan Lindley in a rough performance against the New York Jets, the Arizona Cardinals head coach is swapping signal callers once again. Third-year pro John Skelton will start Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at Century Link Field. Arizona Sports’ Kyndra de St. Aubin tweeted out the news:Whiz says Skelton will start Sunday— Kyndra de St. Aubin (@Kyndra620) December 5, 2012 Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Skelton hasn’t played since being replaced by Lindley in the first half of a loss at Atlanta November 18. The Fordham product, who won the starting job in training camp, has started five games this season, completing 98-of-179 passes for 1,058 yards with two touchdown passes and five interceptions.“There’s a number of reasons that go into it, but John is going to start for us this week up in Seattle, and we’ll go from there,” Whisenhunt said. The head coach was vague about the reasons why he’s switching back to Skelton.“Some of it has to do with Seattle — playing up there, having played against them once already this year,” he said. “There are a lot of factors, but I’m not going into each one of them.” Skelton suffered an ankle injury in the season opener against Seattle at University of Phoenix Stadium and didn’t see the field again until Week 6 against Buffalo when Kevin Kolb suffered a rib injury. Skelton started the next four games before being replaced by Lindley.“It’s another opportunity, you can’t take any opportunity for granted if it comes at the beginning of the season, the end of the season, whether you’re losing or when you’re winning, you just have to take advantage of every opportunity you get,” Skelton said after practice Wednesday. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Comments Share
STEADY GROWTH – Jonathan Cooper has improved steadily every season he’s played the game. He was a high school star, who grew enough to start as a freshman at North Carolina. Then, he never lost his starting job, improving steadily over 47 collegiate starts to earn All-ACC status in 2010 and 2011, and All-American status in 2012. He then began the draft process as the second-ranked guard on the board and ended up being the first chosen. Now, he launches an NFL career where his performance during his first camp has been described as “daily improvement.” Cooper’s steady growth tells you two things: he works hard and his ceiling is made of thin glass.RUN FORREST – Cooper is considered a better run blocker than pass protector. And considering that the entire league has gotten pass happy, Cooper will be limited to doing what he does best for 30-40 percent of the game. Honestly, this is hardly a concern. The Cardinals haven’t had a running game since Eisenhower was president. It will be nice to have an earth mover on the line. PROSCONS Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires – / 13 ATHLETICISM – We normally associate linemen with power, explosion and technique. But athleticism is the first thing scouts mention when discussing the “Amazing Jonathan.” Said one NFL scout of Cooper, “one of the most athletic guards ever scouted.” Cooper works well to the left, well to the right, well at the point of attack, well in the second level of defense, and even the third level. That’s right, don’t be surprised to see Cooper bashing away at defensive tackles, linebackers, and safeties on a single play.SIZE – As big as he is, and as large and as cool as those dreadlocks falling from his helmet make him appear, Cooper is actually undersized. He’s currently listed at 310 pounds, but he played last year at 290, suggesting he has a difficult time maintaining weight during the grind of a season. Furthermore, Cooper is only 6-foot-2 and his arms are short for a lineman. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo R-E-S-P-E-C-T – “The only guy on the line who’s a lock to start is Cooper,” said incumbent starting center Lyle Sendlein. Cooper has blown his new teammates away, commanding respect for his game from day one. “He’s special,” added Sendlein. “Definitely worthy of his draft position.”MAKING CHICKEN SALAD – The fact that Cooper is being described as the Cardinals’ best offensive lineman already is a credit to the rookie’s ability, but also a reminder of how bad this line has been. Cooper could make an immediate impact, but he can’t create this turnaround alone. Hopefully, Cooper can lean on the veterans for some support rather than it being the other way around. WHAT HE HAS BETWEEN THE EARS – Over and over, we’ve heard the NFL’s Wonderlic Test is overrated and should mostly be ignored. But when a O-lineman scores a 34 on a cognitive ability test, considering the average test score is a 20, you tend to take notice. Furthermore, Cooper enters the league with a “high character” mention on his scouting report, having somehow escaped North Carolina’s football program with no baggage. That’s like finding out a member of Motley Crue finished his career without trying drugs.STRENGTH – Cooper benched 225 pounds an impressive 35 times at the combine, but I continue to read from nit-picky analysts that the guard is not particularly strong. Frankly, I don’t see this being a problem, but between the size concern and the strength knock, one might have to wonder how Cooper will hold up over a longer 16-game schedule against elite competition. It’s not the first time an NFL team spent a top 10 pick on an interior offensive lineman. Heck, it’s not even the first time the Cardinals have since 2000. But the moment is rare that a team stoops to the top-ten guard grab, and rarer that one is believed worthy.Meet Jonathan Cooper. The North Carolina product went seventh in the draft, and not even the most critical of NFL analysts batted an eye. Is he really worth it? Time to put him on the scales, as part four of ‘Cardinals: New Faces’ series. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling 0 Comments Share Top Stories Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
GLENDALE, Ariz. — For the Arizona Cardinals, it’s now or never.At the very least, now is as good a time as any.Following a 10-6 season that left the Cardinals out of the postseason but gave them plenty of confidence, the goal is not only to win, but also win big. “I feel like it’s more pressure because you understand how good you can be and only you can set yourself up for a downfall,” defensive lineman Darnell Dockett said following the team’s pre-training camp conditioning test Friday. “It’s one thing to come in here with a new coach and a new scheme you don’t really know, you don’t have this and you don’t have that, but when you look at the roster and you look at everybody else’s roster across the league, you match up just as well. Top Stories And maybe even a hint of desperation. Some of the team’s key players, including Dockett and receiver Larry Fitzgerald, are in their later years and still have yet to accomplish all they’d like. “The window in the NFL is always closing, whether it’s year 11 or year five, especially playing the position that I play,” Dockett said. “The position I play is the most physical position on the field, so any time that you go out there the window is closing because you know for a fact you can’t do it 20, 21 years.”Dockett added that he’s had the same mindset his entire career, saying he doesn’t look at his NFL mortality so much in years as he does opportunities. Every play, he said, could be the one where he goes down. At the same time, this could be the season where something truly special happens. While that may not lead to a sense of urgency, it is certainly something that can drive this team.“Every season should be (approached with urgency) because every one can be your last, as a coach and a player, I can testify to that,” Arians said. “There’s windows for guys, and when you want to put a ring on your finger you build a team and hope that you have a chance to do that, especially with veteran players. “It’s all about chemistry and guys coming together. Coach reminds us every day, this isn’t his team, it’s our team.”Dockett is entering his 11th NFL season, all of which have been spent playing in Arizona. He’s been to the playoffs twice and reached the Super Bowl once. He’s been to three Pro Bowls and at one time was as feared a lineman as you’d find in the game.All he’s been through has given the 33-year-old some perspective, which is a big reason why he is so focused on the season that’s ahead of him.“The expectations are as high as the veterans and the leaders want them to be, and myself, going into year 11, my expectations are very high all the time,” he said. “Because I know opportunities are flying by to try to get to the playoffs or try to get the chance to win a Super Bowl.”It’s a lofty goal, and if the team should accomplish it this season they will be the first in history to win the big game in their home stadium. There is certainly a sense of optimism that this can be a special season.“They know how tough it will be but they have all the confidence in the world we’ll get it done,” coach Bruce Arians said. “I sense it in the practices, in the meetings. The questions being asked in the meetings now are totally different than last year, so there’s a great sense of confidence to go with optimism.” The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo 0 Comments Share Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “And we have quality veterans who want that ring.” – / 12 Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
“I was just fortunate enough to have the opportunity to make that third-down play and bat the ball out bounds in our end zone,” he said. “It all worked out for me.” – / 22 Top Stories TEMPE, Ariz. — There’s a photo making the rounds, one of a leaping Tyrann Mathieu skying just high enough to knock away what could have been a game-winning touchdown pass to Jordan Matthews in the waning seconds of Sunday’s 24-20 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.The timing, the quickness, the athleticism: it was vintage Honey Badger. “I think I’m finally starting to get comfortable with the brace, just moving around with it,” Mathieu said, acknowledging he’s seen the picture. “I think Sunday I wasn’t really thinking about my knee; I think it was just more about going out there and trying to make plays, so I really wasn’t thinking about it at all.” The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Comments Share Mathieu said it’s the first time he’s gone into a game this season not thinking about his knee, and according to his coach, there was a noticeable difference in his play.“He’s gotten better and better and more confidence,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said of the second-year defensive back. “I think the day that brace comes off he’ll be back to full speed, in his mind. He’s already back to full speed, but in his mind he’ll be back there and more comfortable.”Mathieu played a season-high 76 defensive snaps Sunday, finishing the game with four tackles. In six games this season, he has tallied 15 tackles, two passes defensed and one fumble recovery.But Sunday was the first time he really felt like himself out on the football field.“Yeah I did, I did,” he said. “Throughout the game, obviously there were ups and downs, I could have done things better here and there, but I think for the most part I moved around pretty good and I made a few plays. So that was definitely encouraging.”And no doubt, it was exciting to make that the photo comes from, one that may very well have saved the team from its second loss of the season. That moment, Mathieu said, is what he works for during the week.
McCoy, 26, ran for 1,319 yards and five touchdowns and caught 28 passes for 155 yards last season. In 2013, he ran for 1,607 yards and nine scores while catching 52 passes for 539 yards and two touchdowns. One of the best multi-purpose backs in the NFL, he has been named to the Pro Bowl in 2011, 2013 and 2014. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Top Stories Rex Ryan never had a rusher like McCoy, with his defense, he will win in buffalo— Tyrann Mathieu (@Mathieu_Era) March 4, 2015 It’s not often the NFL sees big player-for-player trades go down.Its trade deadline is rather meek compared to those in the NBA, NHL and MLB, and even in the offseason activity on that front rarely moves the meter.Generally, if a trade is to go down, it happens during the NFL Draft and involves picks.But Tuesday, a trade of MAJOR proportions was reported.Filed to ESPN: Bills have notified LB Kiko Alonso he is going to be traded to Philadelphia for RB LeSean McCoy. Trade official next week.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 3, 2015 Wow Shady to Buffalo huh? Crazy!— Patrick Peterson (@RealPeterson21) March 3, 2015 Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact WOW!!!!!!!— MichaelFloyd (@MichaelMFloyd) March 3, 2015 “@PriscoCBS: Donald, the only Duck Chip Kelly hasn’t acquired.”<- 😂— Patrick Peterson (@RealPeterson21) March 3, 2015 The Philadelphia Ducks huh. lol— Patrick Peterson (@RealPeterson21) March 3, 2015 Comments Share 0 loyalty.. Wow..— Tyrann Mathieu (@Mathieu_Era) March 4, 2015 The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo The news came as a shock to the NFL landscape, and members of the Arizona Cardinals reacted via Twitter:Wow RT @MikeSilver: I can confirm the report by @AdamSchefter that the Bills have traded LB Kiko Alonso to the Eagles for RB LeSean McCoy— Tony Jefferson (@tonyjefferson1) March 3, 2015 Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Alonso was a second-round pick of the Bills in 2013 out of Oregon. He tallied 159 total tackles and two sacks as a rookie while also picking off four passes. He missed the entire 2014 season after tearing his ACL.
Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Arizona Cardinals wide receiver John Brown (12) scores a touchdown as San Diego Chargers cornerback Richard Crawford (35) defends during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Saturday, Aug. 22, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) Comments Share Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Arizona Cardinals: I say John Brown, currently being drafted as WR39 (11th round) finishes with more than 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns. My thinking: The speedy breakout star of training camp in 2014, Brown somehow managed almost 700 yards with people like Ryan Lindley throwing to him last season. A full season with Carson Palmer and a Bruce Arians offense that throws deep more than any team in the NFL? Sign me up.Last season, the third-round pick from Pittsburg State burst onto the scene with 48 catches, 696 yards and five touchdowns. By all accounts, the 25-year-old has looked fantastic this training camp and preseason, appearing to be unguardable much of the time. While Arians’ offense is not one to necessarily feature a specific receiver, it would not be a surprise to see the 5-foot-11 Brown become a bit of a focal point.So, in a way, Berry’s prediction doesn’t even seem to be all that bold. – / 31 Odds are good that if you have not already had your fantasy football draft(s), you will shortly.The goal, as always, is to put together the best team possible, but these days it’s difficult to gain much of an edge over your competitors.One of the people whose job it is to help is ESPN’s Matthew Berry. And in his piece presenting bold predictions for 2015 fantasy football, he said Arizona Cardinals receiver John Brown could be in store for a monster season. Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact