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Welcome to the Friday edition of the Pick Six newsletter! 

It is somehow already March, which means free agency is right around the corner, but before we can get there, we have to make it through the combine. If you love the combine, then I have some good news for you: It is going to be on television ALL WEEKEND. The NFL Network will be airing more combine coverage than you could ever want over the next few days with six hours scheduled for today (3-9 p.m. ET), eight hours scheduled for Saturday (1-9 p.m. ET) and four more hours scheduled for Sunday (1-5 p.m. ET). 

We'll also be covering the combine all weekend on CBS Sports HQ, and you can check out our live coverage by clicking here

Unfortunately for me, I might not be able to watch as much of the combine as I would like because my wife's birthday is this weekend. For some reason, she's not as excited I am about the combine. Very weird.

As always, here's your daily reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the newsletter. Actually, you don't even have to tell all of your friends; just tell two of your friends and I'll be happy. To get them signed up, all you have to do is click here. Let's get to the rundown. 

1. Today's show: Breaking down the latest news and rumors from around the NFL

For today's episode of the Pick Six Podcast, it was just me and Will Brinson, and we got a little crazy. The two of us decided to break down the latest rumors from around the NFL and we also had a debate about whether space exists because one player at the combine apparently does not believe in space or "other planets."

"I don't believe in space. … I don't think there's other planets and stuff like that."

That's an actual quote that came from Texas Tech's Tylor Owens, and you can see the video of it here. Brinson and I would both like to see Owens end up on the same team as Josh Dobbs so that they can sit down together and settle whether space actually exists (Dobbs has a degree in aerospace engineering). I'm on #TeamSpace.

After debating whether space exists, Brinson then moved to a debate about what the Bears will do with the top pick. 

  • Most likely scenario: We agreed that the most plausible scenario is that they end up trading Justin Fields and keeping the No. 1 overall pick to draft a quarterback. 
  • Scenario that might actually make more sense: If we were in charge in Chicago, Brinson and I decided that we would trade Fields AND the No. 1 overall pick. The Bears have several holes on their roster and they should try to get as many picks as possible. If they trade Fields, that will get them a few draft picks. Also, trading from one down to three or four in the draft wouldn't be completely crazy. If the Bears aren't completely sold on Caleb Williams, they could trade down after dealing away the top pick for a king's ransom, and then take a quarterback with the third or fourth pick. 
  • Unlikely scenario that might actually be smart: First, you keep Justin Fields. Then you trade down a few picks and draft a wide receiver (Marvin Harrison, Jr. or Malik Nabers). Easy. 

We also spent some time talking about where Russell Wilson might land, and we both liked the idea of Wilson ending up with the Steelers. 

Today's podcast was all over the place, and if you want to hear our full conversation, then be sure to click here so you can listen. You can also watch today's show on YouTube by clicking here

2. Combine roundup: Handing out grades after the first day of drills

The first day of real action went down at the combine on Thursday, and we had defensive linemen and linebackers taking center stage. The two position groups were the first ones to hit the field this week, and NFL Draft guru Josh Edwards was in Indianapolis to grade their performance. 

Here are some of the grades that Josh handed out: 

  • Dallas Turner (Alabama): A. "Turner measured sub 6-foot-3-inches and 247 pounds on Thursday, but his lack of ideal height was neutralized by his 34 3/8" arm length. His athletic testing was off the charts with a 4.46 40-yard dash, as well as a 1.54 second 10-yard split. He leaped out of the stadium with a 40.5-inch vertical jump and a 10-foot-7-inch broad jump."
  • Chop Robinson (Penn State): A-. "At 6-foot-3 and 254 pounds, the hype surrounding Robinson's anticipated performance lived up to expectations as he ran a 4.48 40, which was the fifth-fastest ever at the combine for someone at his position who weighs at least 250 pounds. Yes, he ran fast, but the 1.54-second 10-yard split and 10-foot-8-inch broad jump also showcased how quick he can get off the ball."
  • Bralen Trice (Washington): B-. "Trice dropped some weight from the season, and the thought was that he was hoping to run faster as a result. He finished towards the bottom of the 40-yard dash times (4.72), so that was disappointing, especially stacked up against these other top-tier outings by his peers."

You can see all of Josh's grades from Thursday's action plus his list of winners and losers here

3. Quarterbacks to take center stage at the combine

When it comes to the NFL Combine, the position group that draws the most headlines every year is almost always the quarterbacks, and that will likely once again be the case this year. The quarterback class will be on full display from Friday thru Sunday. 

Although the quarterback class won't be working out until Saturday, they did speak with the media today and they definitely had some interesting things to say. 

  • Caleb Williams declines medicals. Not only is Williams staying out of drills, but the USC quarterback has also made the unprecedented decision to decline his medical exams, which is pretty shocking, because it's believed that he's now the first player in the history of the combine to not go through with his medicals. Williams said on Friday that he'll only reveal his medicals to the teams that he interviews with. "The team I go to for my visit, those teams will have my medicals and that will be it." You can read more about his unique situation here
  • J.J. McCarthy is dropping out of a few drills. McCarthy was one of the top quarterbacks who was supposed to be participating in every drill at the combine, but that won't be the case. The Michigan QB revealed on Friday that he won't be doing any jumps -- vertical or long jump -- and he also won't be running the 40 due to hamstring tightness. The good news for teams is that he still plans to throw, and that's the one big thing that counts when it comes to trying to assess a quarterback. 
  • Jayden Daniels would love to play for the Patriots. There's been a lot of speculation that the Patriots are going to spend the third overall pick on a QB, and if that happens, Daniels would love to be the guy. "It would be dope. Growing up and seeing what Tom Brady did there, six Super Bowls, that's tough to live up to, but it'd be dope to come in there and see the success that they've had and help them get back on the track." Of course, Daniels also said he'd love to go to the "best situation," so it doesn't sound like he's being very picky about where he ends up. He probably also wouldn't mind ending up in Las Vegas, and that's because he is familiar with Raiders coach Antonio Pierce. The two men spent three seasons together at Arizona State. You can see his comments about that here.  
  • Michael Penix Jr. had an interesting interview with the Broncos. Penix stuck to his standard script when he was asked about most teams, but when he got asked about the Broncos, he admitted that things went a little differently than his meetings with other teams. "It was an interesting meeting, it was different than the others," Penix said. "I felt good. I felt confident going into it and going out of it. I felt confident as well and playing for coach Sean Payton, that would be special. ... to be able to learn from him, that would be special." If you're wondering what was different, Penix said the Broncos brought up a lot of his bad plays from his final season at Washington, and he thinks they did it just to see how he'd react. 
  • Drake Maye wins the award for best quote from a QB. The North Carolina quarterback was asked why teams should draft him, and he gave a simple 15-word answer: "You don't want to game plan for me," Maye told NFL Media. "You want to game plan with me." I might put that on a T-shirt. You can read more about what Maye had to say by clicking here

The combine will be going down all weekend and we'll have live coverage all weekend. If you want our streaming coverage, be sure to head over to CBS Sports HQ by clicking here. If you want the latest updates on 40 times and other drills, be sure to follow our combine tracker here. Quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers will be running the 40 on Saturday. 

4. Ranking the top draft prospects at each offensive position

After looking at the top defensive prospects in the draft yesterday, we thought it would only be fair if we followed that up by taking a look at the top offensive prospects today, so that's exactly what we're going to do.  

NFL Draft guru Chris Trapasso ranked every position on the offensive side of the ball, and we're going to check out his top receivers here: 

  1. Malik Nabers, LSU
  2. Marvin Harrison, Jr., Ohio State 
  3. Javon Baker, Central Florida 
  4. Brian Thomas, Jr., LSU 
  5. Rome Odunze, Washington 

Nabers and Harrison are neck-and-neck for the top spot, and if you're wondering why Nabers got the nod, Trapasso has a perfectly reasonable explanation. 

"Nabers gets the nod for me over the highly regarded Harrison Jr. for one reason -- YAC. Harrison has run a more diverse set of routes, but the LSU star goes from 0 to 60 like a Ferrari and tracks it downfield as well as his Ohio State counterpart," Trapasso writes. 

 If you want to see Trapasso's top-five rankings at quarterback, tight end, running back and offensive line, then be sure to click here

5. QB matchmaker: Projecting landing spots for the top quarterbacks

When it comes to playing matchmaker, there's no one better than Cody Benjamin. I'm not sure if it's because he spends half his week watching old episodes of "The Love Connection" or if it's because the only show he used to watch as a kid was "Temptation Island," but Cody is the king of matchmaking. 

Due to that fact, we asked him to match up several free agent quarterbacks with the team that would be the best fit for them. Cody decided to play matchmaker for 18 different players, and we're going to list three of those below. 

  • Match: Kirk Cousins and the Falcons"Cousins likes it in Minnesota, and the Vikings like him, too. But it might finally be time for the latter to shift focus to a longer-term signal-caller. In that case, there isn't a better fit for Cousins than Atlanta, which is ready-made for a playoff run in the wide-open NFC South, complete with ascending skill talent and an underrated defense."
  • Match: Russell Wilson and the Raiders"Wilson's market may be even thinner than most realize, which speaks to the rapid decline in his dual-threat stardom since exiting the Seattle Seahawks. He remains a serviceable starter, however, and that's precisely what the Raiders need after whiffing badly on Jimmy Garoppolo a year ago."
  • Match: Ryan Tannehill and the Steelers"The Steelers are in an awkward position of wanting to give former first-rounder Kenny Pickett another audition, while also knowing full well they can't gloss over a Plan B. A splashier upgrade, such as a trade for the dynamic Justin Fields, would be more invigorating. But Tannehill is precisely the kind of plug-and-play veteran for their predicament, providing immediate starting competition and/or premium insurance."

To check out where Cody has 15 other quarterbacks landing, be sure to click here

6. Extra points: Chain gang could be going extinct

It's been a busy 24 hours in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you.

  • NFL testing optical tracking for first down measurements. NFL fans have been wondering for years why the league doesn't embrace technology when it comes to measuring first downs. Apparently, the NFL has finally gotten the message because the league has been testing optical tracking for first down measurements. The technology still needs to be refined, so it wouldn't be used until 2025 at the earliest, but the important thing is that the league is looking into it. For more on this story, be sure to click here
  • Eagles cut former All-Pro safety. The Eagles have decided to cut ties with Kevin Byard, according to The move comes less than five months after Philadelphia acquired him in a trade with the Titans. Byard's release was almost certainly motivated by the salary cap with the move expected to free up roughly $13 million. 
  • Tyreek Hill responds to accusation that he broke a women's leg. The Dolphins receiver is denying the accusations after being accused this week of breaking a woman's leg while doing football drills at his house in South Florida. Hill's lawyer told ESPN that the lawsuit was only filed to "generate bad publicity for Mr. Hill in an attempt to 'scare tactic' him into personally covering the cost of Ms. Hall's medical bills." If you want more details on this crazy story, you can get those here
  • Vikings to release Alexander Mattison. Minnesota has decided to kick Mattison to the curb. The Vikings gave Mattison the starting running back job last season, but he definitely didn't do enough to keep it. Mattison rushed for just 700 yards during a 2023 season where he scored ZERO rushing touchdowns. The move to cut Mattison will save the Vikings nearly $3.4 million in salary cap space. 
  • Chiefs planning $800 million in renovations. The Chiefs aren't technically building a new stadium, but they might as well be. The team is planning nearly $800 million in upgrades to Arrowhead, which is the third-oldest stadium in the NFL. Before this can happen, though, voters have to approve a tax extension on April 2 that will help pay for the renovations. You can read more about the team's plans here
  • Tush Push will be sticking around. If you are NOT a fan of the tush push, I have some bad news: It looks like the play will be sticking around. The NFL's executive vice president of football ops, Troy Vincent, said there's been no push from teams to eliminate the play. You can read his full explanation here