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SCHOOLED with "The Professor" John Clayton

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Can't get enough of the NFL? Get SCHOOLED with 'The Professor' John Clayton. Each week, ESPN's human database dives deep into all the news in and around the National Football League. Player interviews. In-depth analysis. Stories from a Football Hall of Fame career. Further your football education with new episodes each Thursday.

Can't get enough of the NFL? Get SCHOOLED with 'The Professor' John Clayton. Each week, ESPN's human database dives deep into all the news in and around the National Football League. Player interviews. In-depth analysis. Stories from a Football Hall of Fame career. Further your football education with new episodes each Thursday.
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Can't get enough of the NFL? Get SCHOOLED with 'The Professor' John Clayton. Each week, ESPN's human database dives deep into all the news in and around the National Football League. Player interviews. In-depth analysis. Stories from a Football Hall of Fame career. Further your football education with new episodes each Thursday.




Chris Berman on 40 years at ESPN and how the NFL has changed over those years

One of the highlights of training camp was seeing Chris Berman of ESPN. I had the pleasure of working with Chris for more than 20 years and he’s the absolute best. He joined us on Schooled with the Professor to talk about our love for pro football and some of the history of the game. We talked a lot about the Seahawks, a team that he respects and likes from what he saw of practice. Chris has been a big fan of the San Francisco 49ers in the 1980s and 1990s and the Buffalo Bills team that...


Brian Billick on NFL offensive trends in the NFL

We have quite the education on this week’s Schooled with the Professor. Brian Billick from the NFL Network joins us and as he does so well, he breaks down the current state of offenses in the NFL. Billick, as a former NFL coach, has one of the best offensive minds in the game. He’s been on some of the best offenses in NFL history. Having just been to the Baltimore Ravens camp, Billick talks about the potential running offense of the Ravens with Lamar Jackson at quarterback. He asked John...


David Shields on his Documentary- Lynch: A History

We have a fun class on Schooled with the Professor this week. David Shields, a professor at the University of Washington, just did a documentary on Marshawn Lynch. Lynch: A History is available Sunday on Amazon and Vimeo. Shields tells us he got into this project because he felt Lynch’s silence made a statement. He put together the documentary using more than 700 video clips. Shields discusses how Lynch's youth in Oakland shaped his personality and gets into how his experiences in Buffalo...


Pat Kirwan on how teams are preparing to combat new offensive trends this season

With training camps opening this week, we thought this was the perfect time to preview what to expect around the NFL. Our go-to guy for Schooled with the Professor is Pat Kirwan. I work with Pat and Jim Miller as a fill-in on Sirius radio. Kirwan is the best in the business at studying the league. We start out getting into the increasing trend of teams using three-receiver offenses and how defenses have had to adjust. Defenses are in nickel 65 percent of the time and that number increases...


Draft expert Tony Pauline on the supplemental draft and a review of the Seahawks picks

After a quiet June in the National Football League and a slow start in July, things are in the beginning stages of heating up. On Wednesday, the NFL held its supplemental draft and Washington State safety Jalen Thompson went to the Arizona Cardinals for a fifth-round pick in 2020. Tony Pauline at joined us on Schooled with the Professor to talk about Thompson’s prospects in the NFL. Pauline also gives a detailed evaluation of the Seahawks. We discuss draft trends from the...


Tony Dungy - a Powerful Message

One of the highlights of my career covering the NFL was watching the development of Tony Dungy. I covered him when he was an undrafted rookie with the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was at training camp the first day he came to the Steelers to interview for a coaching position. I kept in touch with him and watched him grow into a Super Bowl caliber coach. He joins us on Schooled with the Professor. Dungy is a class act. He was a great coach who learned from Chuck Noll and the Steelers. We talk about...


Phil Steele's College Football Preview

One of the highlights of the sports year comes in June. That’s when Phil Steele publishes his College Football Preview. As we do every year, we catch up with Phil and preview the college football season. He joins us on Schooled with the Professor. Steele is the absolute best at previewing the season. He discusses the many statistical formulas he’s perfected throughout the years. He believes teams that lose an abundance of close games make major position jumps the next year. If teams win a...


Evaluating the Off-season with NFL Network's Steve Wyche

The off-season programs of the 32 NFL teams are concluding this week. With the closing of work on the field for players, it was time to wrap up what’s been going on this off-season. Steve Wyche of the NFL Network joins us on Schooled with the Professor to take a look at the league and where teams stand as mini-camps conclude. Wyche gives us an update on Todd Gurley and his knee problems and how he might be used this year. Steve spent time with the Arizona Cardinals and has raves reviews of...


Kevin Mawae on his career and being voted into the HOF

Kevin Mawae was a unique center in the National Football League. When the Seahawks drafted him, he struggled to maintain weight. His weight would slip to around 275 pounds, which is tough for a center trying to block in a division loaded with big defensive tackles. He got a little too heavy in year three. By the fourth year, he was able to resolve everything and have a Hall of Fame career. He joins us on Schooled with the Professor. His story is a great one. Very few centers are able to...


Dean Blandino on the expansion of replay and the state of officiating in the NFL

This week we are joined by Dean Blandino, Fox analyst and former supervisor of officials for the NFL. Last week, NFL owners decided to alter the pass interference challenge rule that they approved in March. Blandino gets into the nuances of how difficult a task the Competition Committee has in getting things fixed. He also talks about the history of replay and how the intention was never to expand the number of plays that can be reviewed. We also get into the difficulty officials have in a...


Pete Fierle takes us inside the Pro Football Hall of Fame

This is the time of year to plan for vacations and get ready for another NFL season. With former Seahawk center Kevin Mawae going into the Hall of Fame, Canton, Ohio, should be a great vacation destination in August. On Schooled with the Professor, we talked to Pete Fierle, the Chief of Staff and VP of Communications for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Pete went into great detail of what is available for the fans. There are plenty of things to do, from the first pre-season game, to the...


'Everyone Can Be A Ninja' with Akbar Gbajabiamila

This is a big week for Akbar Gbajabiamila. He he celebrates his 40th birthday, heads Tacoma to shoot American Ninja Warrior, and launches his book `Everyone Can Be A Ninja'. The book describes growing up in South Central Los Angeles as one of seven children. It also covers his NFL career and how he made the transition into broadcasting. He applied the focus he learned growing up in South Central to his broadcasting career and now he’s a superstar. On Friday and Saturday, NBC is shooting...


Evaluating the 2019 NFL Draft with Bucky Brooks

Everyone knew last weekend's NFL draft was going to be defensive, but it didn't play out as anticipated. This week, On Schooled with the Professor we turned to Bucky Brooks of the NFL Network and The biggest surprise was the pass rushing defensive ends. It was considered a great draft for pass rushers but as it turned out, 12 defensive front seven players were taken in the first 19 picks and the list of quality pass-rushers ended quickly. Bucky goes into what happened to the...


Final look at the NFL draft with Greg Gabriel

On the eve of the NFL draft, we caught up with Greg Gabriel, the former head of college scouting for the Chicago Bears. For Schooled with the Professor, we hit the draft pretty hard. Greg educated us on the usual inside workings of the draft. As he said, normally teams are going to have first-round grades on 12 to 15 players and the next group may include 40 to 60 players who have second-round grades that are pretty close. Gabriel explains how teams think. He discusses the flexibility of...


Bill Barnwell on NFL QB contracts

The Russell Wilson contract extension was not only one of the biggest stories in Seattle this year, it was one of the biggest stories in the league. This week on Schooled with the Professor, we talked to Bill Barnwell of The two of us went in depth discussing the impact of having to pay quarterbacks and how it works in this cap era. Bill recently wrote a story for about the next 11 quarterbacks who will get mega-deals. He accurately predicted that Wilson would get a...


Seahawks & The Draft with Ourlads' Dan Shonka

The NFL draft is two weeks away, so it’s time to start figuring out what’s going to happen. For the Seahawks. John Schneider is likely to trade down from the 21st pick to get more draft picks, since they have only four. So, on Schooled with the Professor, we check in with Dan Shonka from Ourlads to study how far the Seahawks can move down and still get a quality defensive player. Dan talks about how deep the draft is for edge pass-rushers, which is one of the team’s primary needs. Shonka...


David Tepper and Shawn Springs

It’s double-header time on Schooled with the Professor! First, we had a chance to talk to new Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper. David grew up in Pittsburgh. In fact, he graduated from the University of Pittsburgh two years after I graduated from Duquesne University. Both of us grew up in tough towns on the outskirts of Pittsburgh. Both of us were fortunate to learn and have great instincts growing up in that environment. Tepper became a billionaire. He bought a minority share of the...


New Rules with Al Riveron

The NFL's head of officiating Al Riveron sits down with The Professor at the owners' meetings in Phoenix, AZ in this week's SCHOOLED. In a surprising move, NFL owners voted yesterday to approve a rule proposal that allows for offensive and defensive pass interference, including non-calls, to be subject to review. Saints coach Sean Payton led the charge to expand the replay system following a highly publicized missed call in the NFC championship game that many believe cost his team a trip to...


Peter King: Earl Thomas, Free Agency Deals, and More

Peter King from NBC sports joins us on Schooled with the Professor and we could have talked for an hour. Our first topic was Earl Thomas. Peter talked to him after he signed with the Baltimore Ravens and has some great insight into Earl's state of mind. King tells us the Kansas City Chiefs wanted to sign him to a one-year, $12 million contract after reaching a $14 million a year deal with Tyrann Mathieu. The Ravens came in at the end and scooped him up for $13.75 million. King also gives...


Free Agency with Mike Lombardi

This year marks the 25th anniversary of NFL free agency. Things are moving fast and furious, and this week on Schooled with the Professor, we talk to the perfect person to go through the history of NFL free agency. Mike Lombardi has worked with and for some of the best football minds throughout the years. He’s been a general manager. He recently wrote a great book about football, "Gridiron Genius," and he's a writer for The Athletic. Lombardi talks about how free agency has changed over the...