Goodell upholds bounty suspensions levied by Goodell Lard

Good Afternoon, Broncos fans, and Happy Fourth! According to Mike Florio, Matt Prater got $4.25M in guarantees as part of his new deal - not $3M as had been reported by the DP.

If this is true, count me back on the side of disliking this contract. Prater will be making more this season than Ryan Clady and Von Miller (I know, rookie contracts, but still), and somewhere in the neighborhood of Joel Dreessen, Jacob Tamme, Tracy Porter, Chris Kuper, and Joe Mays.

This, for a 78.4% career kicker (76% last year, tied for 26th-best among kickers with 24 or more attempts).

Out of 34 active kickers, Prater ranks 29th in overall accuracy over his career. These are not figures that suggest Prater should be one of the league's highest-paid kickers.

Broncos

Mike Klis says the total value of the contracts for Brock Osweiler and Ronnie Hillman are done, but that the sides are still haggling over guarantees.

Jeff Legwold looks back at the rough early start to Prater's stint as Denver's primary kicker.

Another group of players visited with firefighters and support personnel who are battling the Waldo Canyon Fire; Ben Garland spoke about the loss of his grandparents' home with CBS4.

Klis joined Florio on PFT Live to discuss expectations for Peyton Manning and the Broncos (videos), and he claims PMFM began offseason work at 65% and is now at 85-90%. What this is based upon, I have no idea.

Meanwhile, two of the writers for NFL.com mildly debate what to expect out of Manning this year.

Here's the 2012 Media Guide, featuring new Ring of Famer Rod Smith on the cover.

The latest issue of the team's official magazine can be seen here; it includes profiles of the team's seven draft picks.

Trimmings

To no surprise at all, NFL appeals court judge Roger Goodell upheld the suspension ruling by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell against the current and former Saints allegedly involved in the bounty scandal.

Arbitrator Stephen Burbank ruled that the first franchise tag used on Drew Brees (by San Diego) still counts, which means if the Saints were to tag him in 2013, it would cost them a whopper of a salary.

Former longtime Raider Ben Davidson passed away at 72; Monte Poole remembers the DE. The Raiders' pledge to donate a portion of season ticket sales last year netted the Oakland school system over $54K.

RB Derrick Ward is retiring; Browns DT Kiante Tripp was arrested in Georgia for burglary.

Chad Johnson claims he's going to play until he's 40, and he is making an extraordinary gesture to one of his Twitter followers who was recently widowed.

Scrapple

Greg Cosell has been impressed by Eli Manning's year-to-year improvement, and he thinks Eli truly arrived as a great QB last season.

Jaws says Joe Flacco has the strongest arm in the NFL, but between the two 2008 first-round QBs, Bucky Brooks would prefer Matt Ryan over Flacco.

Khaled Elsayed checks on RB drop data and finds no Broncos among the best or worst. Despite his tendency to fumble, Peyton Hillis ranks among the best in terms of holding onto passes thrown his way.

Chase Stuart looks at franchise passing leaders; can anyone guess which QBs hold the Broncos records for yards and TD passes in a single season? I'd have gotten those wrong. Plus, Stuart looks over Matt Forte's productive career and forgives his lackluster 2009 season.

Will Brinson thinks Norv, Shanny, and Sexy Rexy are among the coaches whose jobs are in greatest peril heading into this season.

Matt Bowen breaks down a strong safety zone blitz; Ben Muth evaluates the Rams offensive line.

Offal

Joe Paterno and the rest of the self-serving PSU admins continue to look worse and worse everyday.

We'll end on a much better note. Happy Birthday, America. Do you believe in miracles?

PS. Please don't drink and drive, and enjoy the holiday!

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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