1. Inside Training Camp: Are NFL Camps Getting Too Soft?

    The concerned look on my mom’s face said it all as I walked out of FedEx Field on one of those humid nights in August after the third preseason game in 2004...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 41 minutes ago 8 reads 0 comments

  2. Inside Training Camp: Uncomfortable Accommodations Can Be a Beautiful Thing

    NFL training camps should be dirty, grimy and even a little uncomfortable for players as they prep for the regular season with long days of practice in the summer heat and meetings that stretch deep into the night...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 days ago 321,924 reads 107 comments

  3. NFL 101: Breaking Down the Basics of Man Pressure

    In this installment of the "NFL 101" series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of man pressure to give you a better understanding of the scheme and its execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 6 days ago 94,907 reads 32 comments

  4. Inside Training Camp: Everything Changes When the Pads Go On

    Back in spring, I talked about the importance of offseason practice sessions for NFL clubs as they installed the playbook, drilled technique and began their prep work for the 2014 season...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 7 days ago 62,553 reads 52 comments

  5. Welcome to NFL Training Camp, Rookie

    With the Bills and Giants already on the field for fall camp—and the rest of the league reporting by the end of this week—it’s time for the real competition (and the hitting) to begin across the NFL ...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 9 days ago 81,897 reads 63 comments

  6. NFL 101: Introducing the Basic Red-Zone Route Combinations

    In this installment of the "NFL 101" series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basic red-zone-route passing combinations to give you a better understanding of the scheme and its execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 64,469 reads 13 comments

  7. For NFL Rookies, the Symposium Eliminates the Excuses

    During the 2000 Rookie Symposium out in San Diego, I, along with close to 300 other rookies, put condoms on bananas, sat through role-play sessions and watched as two beautiful women walked up on stage to reveal that they were HIV positive...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 24,848 reads 26 comments

  8. Lavonte David Primed for Star Turn Under Tutelage of Lovie Smith

    In just his second pro season, Lavonte David produced top-tier numbers (145 tackles, seven sacks, five interceptions, two forced fumbles) while showcasing a skill set that meshes with today’s game at the weak-side linebacker position...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 24,174 reads 67 comments

  9. NFL 101: Breaking Down the Basics of the Zone Blitz

    In this installment of the "NFL 101" series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of the zone blitz in order to give you a better understanding of the scheme and its execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 52,551 reads 15 comments

  10. For NFL Players, There Is No Summer Vacation

    As minicamps wrap up across the league, what’s the next step for NFL players as they begin their “summer vacations” before reporting to camp in late July? ...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 38,426 reads 97 comments

  11. NFL 101: Introducing the Basics of Cover 4

    In today's installment of the "NFL 101" series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of Cover 4 to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 80,993 reads 16 comments

  12. Pain Is Just Part of the Game in the NFL

    Toradol shots, Vicodin , Percocet . Every player in the NFL has his own form of pain management to mask injuries for three hours of football on a Sunday afternoon with injections, pills, whatever...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 94,507 reads 112 comments

  13. Chip Kelly's Offense Presents Biggest Challenge to NFL Defensive Coordinators

    Breaking down Chip Kelly ’s offense in Philadelphia (with a focus on the core concepts), I have no problem calling this a West Coast-spread system in both the run and pass game...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 54,095 reads 264 comments

  14. NFL 101: Breaking Down the Basics of Packaged Plays

    In today’s installment of the “ NFL 101” series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of packaged plays to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 69,834 reads 12 comments

  15. Why Defensive Backs Have a Tough College-to-NFL Transition

    The top rookie defensive backs in the 2014 class have the speed, change-of-direction ability and ball skills to compete at the NFL level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 39,734 reads 48 comments

  16. How New NFL Head Coaches Make Their Mark Early in Offseason Calendar

    Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve taken a deeper look at the offseason programs in the NFL through the eyes of both rookies and veterans as they start their prep for the 2014 season...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 1 month ago 51,912 reads 28 comments

  17. NFL 101: Introducing the Read-Option

    In today’s installment of the “ NFL 101” series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of the read-option to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 61,695 reads 71 comments

  18. Memo to NFL Rookies: Be Prepared to Play Special Teams

    For the majority of rookies, the ability to play special teams is the ticket to landing a roster spot when the final cuts are made before the start of the regular season...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 23,922 reads 17 comments

  19. Welcome to the NFL...Here's Your 1st Playbook

    As the transition to the NFL continues for rookies through OTAs, coaching sessions and the mandatory minicamps that will start next month, the playbook install is a vital piece of the developmental process...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 68,628 reads 68 comments

  20. NFL 101: Introducing the Zone-Running Game

    In today’s installment of the “ NFL 101” series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of the zone-running game to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 88,868 reads 26 comments

  21. The Hidden Value of NFL OTA Practices

    With NFL teams on the field for OTAs as they begin their prep work for the 2014 season, let’s discuss the hidden value of these offseason practice sessions with a focus on ...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 19,474 reads 21 comments

  22. Should NFL Teams 'Redshirt' Quarterbacks?

    There are positives to rookie quarterbacks taking a "redshirt" year as they learn how to study pro tape, scout opponents, work on their mechanics and improve their overall functional strength in the weight room...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 2 months ago 68,142 reads 169 comments

  23. NFL 101: Introducing the Power-Running Game

    In today’s installment of the “ NFL 101” series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of the power-running game to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 3 months ago 108,892 reads 31 comments

  24. NFL Draft 2014: Top Rookie Team-Scheme Fits

    Looking back at the 2014 NFL draft, let’s break down the rookies who have the opportunity to contribute early and play key roles because of their fit from a scheme perspective...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 3 months ago 96,594 reads 149 comments

  25. So You Just Got Drafted...Now What?

    Sitting in a window seat on a short flight from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to St. Louis just four days after the 2000 NFL draft, I felt like a young kid, or a freshman, on the first day of class...

    Matt  Bowen Written by Matt Bowen about 3 months ago 105,386 reads 104 comments