Posts Tagged ‘NFL’

Take a Knee, Everyone, Take a Knee… What are We Protesting??

September 24, 2017



Colin Kaepernick started it last year, this taking a knee during the anthem before an NFL game and it created quite a ruckus. Seems everyone has a side on the issue, one way or the other.

But now, a year later, it has finally reached the pinnacle of all protests… Yes, President Trump has tweeted his displeasure. Naturally, Roger Goodell contends that the NFL has a right to make their own rules and, as long as the owners permit it (and until the advertisers suspend their ads [spoiler: AIN’T gonna happen!]), they will let the players take a knee.

The owners are now tweeting replies to the President’s tweets that owners and fans should protest the protesters and Keith Olbermann has tweeted that everyone, including the fans in the seats, should “take a knee” in protest of Trump’s demands.

Meanwhile, Army Chaplain Captain Sonny Hernandez thinks the Constitution should always play second fiddle to his own personal religious beliefs. He states that anyone in the Armed Forces who supports the Constitutional Rights of OTHER religions to practice their own beliefs is serving none other than Satan himself.

Now, the Chaplain did not conclusively state his religious convictions implied taking a knee at an NFL game was tantamount to selling one’s soul to the Master Menace from the Netherworld, it certainly seems to be what he has implied.

Meanwhile, the head of Black Lives Matter tweeted to say he has talked to 75 other NFL players who plan to take a knee as well come this weekend’s games.

And, in case this somehow got missed with all the genuflecting going on, Colin’s protest started with the incident that gave birth to the BLM movement.

So, once again, a quiet and personal protest on one issue alone has become an immense flack about protesting Trump, or religions, or the Constitution, or any other freaking thing you might want it to mean. Protesting Trump? Take a knee! Protesting Clinton’s stealing the nomination from Bernie? Take a knee! Protesting the high cost of bananas this week? Take a knee! Think Elon Musk should make Tesla’s more affordable? Take a freakin’ knee!

I think if anyone has anything, and I really DO mean ANYTHING to protest… Take the knee!

I know I will. These damned new shoes are killing me!

I’m taking the knee.


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the 2017 NFL Season Thus Far

September 20, 2017



I found the opening week of the season very interesting for three separate reasons.

First, Trevor Siemian looked a lot crisper than he did last season and looks like he might be very good. And it wasn’t some fluke because he looked as good in week two. Maybe the Broncs will get back to the playoffs this year.

Second, Sam Bradford was the most confident I had ever seen him (and that includes all his time with the Rams and the “weekend layover” in Philly). I was anxiously awaiting seeing if he could repeat it in week two… but it was not to be. Yes, another injury.

Thirdly, the Patriots forgot to bring their defense to play. And it’s not like they lost them somewhere on the road because they were playing at home but for some reason they were all on seemingly different pages. They seem to have gotten on the page by week two.

And after two weeks, we have eight teams at 2 and 0: the Lions, Falcons, and Panthers in the NFC and the Ravens, Steelers, and three of the four teams in the AFC West: Broncos, Chiefs, and Raiders in the AFC.

And while we have to usual dawdlers at 0 and 2 (Bears, 49ers, Jets, Cleveland, and the Colts) we also find a few surprises among those ranks: Giants, Saints, and the Bengals.

But the season’s young and anything can happen.

Well, all except the Patriots going undefeated this year.



Tebow Soaring? Not Just Yet

April 22, 2015



Philly has signed Tim Tebow to a one year’s deal but that could mean anything at this point.

Other than reporter Trent Dilfer, every other commentator in the sports press seems to think it is going to be a waste of time, even though they all claim to have not yet gotten a chance to see the “new, improved Tebow”. Most are still complaining over the “old Tebow” with most crowing the familiar refrain that you cannot change a leopard’s spots.

If they were correct in the idea that people cannot fundamentally change, I suppose Saul of Tarsus’ tale of redemption on the road to Damascus was a lie. If people cannot change, I suppose Alcoholics Anonymous doesn’t really help anyone set aside their addictions. And, it should also figure that every heartwarming story of redemption and forgiveness in the history of the world is nothing but a sham.

One thing I do know that does not seem to change is these people’s attitude about Tebow any more than you can get the press to change their stance on the Kennedy assassination.

I am hoping that Chip Kelly can prove all these people wrong by pulling off one of the great coaching miracles he has been known for.

And it won’t even matter if the talking heads praise Tim’s success as proof of Kelly’s brilliance rather than his abilities.

Which, of course, is how they will slant the story. Cannot admit they could have been wrong, y’know.




Roger… Over and Out

September 10, 2014

There are a bunch of people calling for Goodell’s head after the most recent fiasco in the NFL. But these people seem to forget what his job is over there.

PR, pure and simple. If anything comes along that makes the NFL “look” bad, Roger is all over it like white on rice… or something. He is not some Supreme Justice handing down balanced opinions and punishments for students to pore over in posterity, he is making the NFL LOOK caring, concerned, responsible.

It seems some people have lost the idea that this is really nothing but a sport and the NFL just another tax-free multi-billion dollar corporation. When was the last time you heard about a corporation really caring for “people”?

The Commish hears cases of violence in the game and passes out judgments like lollipops to the kids getting their first haircut. Each may be a different color but for some strange reason they all taste exactly the same, you know?

His decisions are not the golden benchmarks of jurisprudence some people seem to think they are.

Violent hits are frowned on – and fined – because of previous lawsuits. Drug abuse is frowned on – and fined – because of previous lawsuits.

Then along comes a case of domestic violence. Hey, that sort of thing happens and its not pleasant but – hey! – its really no one’s business, is it?

Except that it was a big-name player and a black-eye for the league. So, Roger and his assistants looked through their papers and found not very much in legal actions against the league for this sort of thing. Still, it reflects badly on the league that they cannot somehow keep the violent nature of their players curtailed to the confines of the playing field. So, Roger simply had to do something to keep that hint of tarnish off the NFL shield.

Did they see the tape? Who cares?! They certainly didn’t care anything more about the situation whether they saw the tape or not.

Their only concern – and most especially, Roger’s – was to make it appear that the NFL cared. That was all this is about.

Do those billionaires really care that a man whalloped his wife in a casino elevator after both had reached their alcohol-tolerance limits? Heck no!

There have been other tales over the years of players doing the same thing – even with some of the battered wives pressing charges – but it never had interfered with the business of football. The league figured it was handled properly.

But times have changed and it would seem that the public did not react as Roger figured. Maybe it was TMZ’s fault or maybe his own but he wound up with something akin to egg on his face.

Now, people are calling for Roger’s head.

That is an overreaction. That is not understanding his role. People are acting like he’s had a fall from Grace or something. He was never “up there” to begin with. He’s just a CEO.

The overreaction – in my opinion – is what has happened to Rice.

Many people over the years have had to learn to deal with anger issues. There are treatment centers, programs, councillors. Ray can get some help in this. But to ban him FOR LIFE seems a bit harsh. Even killers seem to get lighter sentences these days.

First Roger underreacted to the case and now he has overreacted. People are screaming for his removal.

But I am sure there are clinics to help him through this as well.

Professional Football is Imploding in Florida

November 4, 2013

NFLflorida

It was bad enough that Jacksonville refused to take the locally charmed Tim Tebow and thus earn the complete distrust and disgust of their fans by producing a less-than-lackluster team, now the remainder of Florida has joined in the “Peninsular curse”.

But I don’t really think we can blame Tebow for any of this… can we? Unless the scriptures somewhere tell us that “the peninsula will be lost if one turns their back on the Man of God” or something like that.

Anyway, after Jacksonville buckled to the curse, Tampa Bay was beset with a scourge of virus and bacterial infestation… somewhat less than seven plagues, but you get the drift.

Some of their team have gotten very ill from the microbes and their coach (some say who has a brain the size of a microbe) is acting fairly odd in his decision making.

This mess might be entirely overlooked if either team had one win between them but they are – strangely enough – the ONLY two teams in the NFL without a win this season! This has Biblical connotations all over it!!

Still, there was one bright spot in this fiasco: Miami is sitting at .500 (4 wins, 4 losses) and are not the bearers of the golden goose egg shared by the other two Florida franchises but now it seems they have a mess the size of Texas. And maybe a bigger mess than the other two teams combined.

It seems Jonathan Martin (no relation to Trayvon) has gone AWOL from the team amid swirling rumors of hazing, practical jokes, and other good-natured football camaraderie. Perhaps the fellow just has thin skin.

Today, the story took a turn to the South and it seems that one player named Ricky (whose name will remain Incognito) has been badgering the fellow for some time now (like since last year) and has been using racial slurs, threats, innuendo, and half a dozen other nuanced behaviors that I thought were beyond the mental capacity of the one-who-shall-remain-Incognito.

It is a sad day for for Miami, a sadder day for Florida, and an even bigger dark day for the NFL.

Oh, did I mention Jonathan Martin is black? (That might frame the story in a different light.)

So, what looked like a simple case of an emotionally frail young man not being able to take some friendly ribbing, it now seems his teammate has been involved in criminal behavior of a very bad sort.

And the rest of the team seems to have known something of this and did nothing about it.

Sure, New England had Hernandez and the murder-thing – so very easy to see that sort of thing and handle it – but this does not bode well for anyone.

If the league cannot get this sort of behavior under control (and there were shades of the same sort of thing going on in Tampa just a couple of weeks ago, i.e. Freeman’s departure) they are going to wish their only problems were a few concussion cases, illegal tackle fines, and the racial slur contained in the names of their teams.


Maybe everyone in Florida should take a moment and do a little Tebowing?

And perhaps Tim could bring some salvation.

Or at least a little salve.


a Real Song of Ice and Fire

June 11, 2013

hoodie

On May 9th, Mike Florio reported that Mike Silver of Yahoo! Sports (a man of questionable authority to begin with) that “Belichick hates Tebow”.

As if the story did not already have too many Mikes in the equation, they went on to quote “organizational sources” and “unnamed head coaches” to firm up the claim.

Six weeks ago, Tebow was released by the Jets to – as most assumed – fade away into obscurity. When I read the original Mike Florio article to my wife, I said it sounded like a bit of misdirection by the guys in Foxboro if it was actually really said by anyone attached to the Patriots organization.

If misdirection was intended, it worked like a charm and now all the commentators are proclaiming it was the “perfect match” all along.

Whatever.

The Jets may have taken Tebow originally with the idea of doing something with him but never quite figured out what that might be.

The sports talking-heads are now saying that Belichick always likes taking on “projects” and many have not turned out well. Remember Albert Haynesworth?

But other ones have turned out pretty good, like Randy Moss.

And Belichick has a way of shutting down the “media circus” that seems to follow Tebow wherever he goes.

True, true, and true… but these guys are still overlooking one final thing that might be a more interesting angle:

Belichick loves to get the New York Jets’ goat whenever he can. Whether spying on them or simply trashing them (not hard to do, it seems) Bill loves to goad the Jets.

Now he can – possibly – use a tool they discarded against them in a very public way.

I doubt he will pull Brady out of the games against the Jets (two a year, if memory serves me [LOL]) but I can certainly see him using the fellow in the games to show them what they coulda, woulda, shoulda done.

Darren Sharper (an analyst at NFL network) contends that the entire thing is a mistake that Tebow is not a quarterback… apparently he has never seen any of the stats from his high school, collegiate, or NFL career. Either that or he simply tends to ignore the stats because “everyone knows” he can’t play quarterback.

That’s a very Rex Ryan attitude to take. And we can see how well it served him and the Jets last year.

Many people think the Patriots are taking Tebow to change him into a tight end or running back. But, no, he has been hired as a quarterback.

If there can be any good brought from this relationship, you know Belichick will find it. Maybe not this season, but later on. Brady will not last forever. Not saying Tebow is his logical heir, but who knows what the future may bring.

The Wizard of Oz and the Wizard of Menlo Park are really no match for the man behind the curtain in Foxboro. The wizard in the gray hoodie makes the incomprehensible seem to make more sense than the power struggles behind each episode of “Game of Thrones”.


So there will be no quarterback controversy in New England like we saw in Denver and New York. No one is going to doubt that Brady is THE starting quarterback.

And there will no longer be a Tebow media circus… not in Foxboro. There, Belichick has always been the one-man circus.

Another Season in the Can

January 21, 2013

Well, it’s all over but the Super Bowl and I cannot express how glad I am that this season is over!

We started out with the lousy reffing of the replacements and finally (!) Roger Goodell pressured them to sign a contract and get the regular refs back on the field. We all heaved a sigh of relief.

Unfortunately, I cannot see that the reffing got any better. All season long, every game I saw, I was wishing the replacement refs were back on the field. Even in the playoffs, it was so miserable, I was praying they would bring them back.

Why?

Simple. With such lousy reffing – and it was as bad as when I played on my junior high team (and that was fifty years ago) – if we only had the replacements still on the field I would understand why it was so piss poor.

With the “professional” refs present, you would expect at least a semi-professionally reffed game. But no such luck.

Missed calls, erroneous calls, too damned many ref huddles where they try to figure out what the heck game they are reffing, or what day of the week it is, or what movies are showing on the local theaters, or something!

So, we can now – or at least after just one more game – put this madness behind us and hope next season will see the return of the true professional refs.

Maybe it’s just that they did not have time at the start of the season to “find their groove”. Maybe those first weeks of preseason would have been enough to help these poor guys get into the swing of it.

And, as it turned out, they missed that vital breaking-in period and seemed a little off-kilter, a little out of touch, slightly unbalanced all season long.

I just hope with the off-season that they can regroup and give us a much better season that the one they just finished.


Yeah, I know, you’re not supposed to complain about the reffing… if you’re an NFL coach, that is, and I am not one of those.

My old high school coach said “the refs can’t beat you”… but I don’t think he saw anything as lousy as this year’s reffing.

Start to finish, it was one for the record books.

And like the fans of all the losing teams say: “Hey, there’s always next year.”

Even for the refs.


I’m Just Sayin’…

January 16, 2013

While it is a truism that no good deed goes unpunished, and equally true that sometimes you’ve only got one shot…

It is also true that a man is greater than the sum of his parts.

The new GM for the Jacksonville Jaguars – the team everyone assumed Tebow would next play for – has announced they really have no place in their organization for the man.

Most people have said that Tebow did miserably while at the Jets… but when was he given the chance? They used him sparingly over the season. The “brilliant” (a self-proclaimed moniker, I believe) coach Ryan would rather lose with Sanchez.

Tebow’s brother tweeted his side of the argument but he has no say in the matter. (If you missed that, he basically reminded everyone that the last playoff win in Denver was by none other than his brother, Tim.)

Analysts all claim that both Denver and New York have said he is a “terrible” QB.

If Tebow was such a bad QB, how could he take Denver on such a wild ride into the playoffs? Probably, had he gone all the way to the Super Bowl, they would still have said the same thing.

Why?

Because in practice, Tebow looks lousy.

Therefore he cannot play good enough for the NFL, right?

But practice is not the same as the game and some people are simply better when put in the right conditions.

A fine example of that is Kaepernick, the young QB who rallied the 49ers to beat the Packers, and that’s after he threw a pick-six on the opening drive.

Picking talent is a seemingly rare talent. There are too many stories about the “draft busts” over the years. Choices made by people supposedly good at judging talent.

Yet, as many people know, it is not always the quality of the stars that means the most. I remember a certain team out of Miami that was not full of the greatest stars in the NFL but they seem to have gone undefeated. Later greats like Dan Marino could not surround himself with a team like that.

What is that indefinable thing that causes some people to form into a great team, and for the individual parts to become better than they otherwise might have been?

Joe Montana was picked in the third round because they said he did not have arm strength that was NFL caliber. They said he couldn’t compete in the NFL.

Tom Brady was chosen in the sixth round because he looked positively horrible at the Combine. They said he couldn’t compete in the NFL.

And that shows you what their statistics and miles of “practice” footage will get you.

Tebow deserves a shot because he has already shown he can do the job.

But I don’t think anyone in the NFL is smart enough to know it. Or to look back at that footage.

What Is It With the Jets?

December 30, 2012

[Yes, yet another useless football-oriented entry… but don’t worry: the season is almost over!]

Sure we know that everyone ♥ New York but is the place becoming the “vacation year” for athletes?

Brett Favre came out of retirement and Green Bay immediately shipped the guy off to the Jets for one year. Then he was traded to Minnesota the next year and took them on a pretty good run into the playoffs.

Now Tim Tebow has gone to the same Jets for – apparently – only one year before being shipped off to who knows where… probably Jacksonville, where he wanted to go in the first place rather than… well, New York, which everyone ♥, by the way.

I know there is not enough data here to make any decent statistical analysis but what is going on here? Is New York the new sabbatical, or is it more of the new “Time Out” corner for slightly bizarre players? (Sure, you want to add “and coaches”… but Ryan has been there for more than a year.)

Maybe it is just some sort of jinx. I mean, two rather exceptional (though much maligned) quarterbacks have both spent their year in purgatory (i.e. New York Jets organization, not the city, which everyone ♥’s) in utter mediocrity before moving on to where they wanted to go in the first place.

Do the Jets just not know how to use talent when they get it or what? I mean, they did pretty good back in the days of Broadway Joe. He was able to take them places…

Ah, but that was in the days before Broadway Rex.

Don’t ya just ♥ New York?

Sure My Math Isn’t What It Used to Be…

December 25, 2012

The Washington Redskins battled back to “tie” the Giants and Cowboys above the NFC East. But, because of the tie-breaking rules, Washington was actually the head of the division.

Then, last weekend, the Redskins beat Philly while both the Giants and the Cowboys lost, so that put them ahead by one game AND – by my calculations, gave them the division as well.

To my surprise, none of the sportscasters or networks seem to see it that way. It must be my math.

It seems to me that, by using the same tie-breaking rules as before, if Dallas AND the Giants both win next week (meaning the Redskins lose to the Cowboys) it would result in another three-way tie and – using the same tie-breaking rules as before – Washington would STILL win the division because they have a better divisional record than either of the other two.

If the Redskins lose to Dallas, they will both be 9-7. If the Giants beat Philly, they too will be 9-7.

In the Divisional records, Washington & Dallas will both be 4-2, the Giants 3-3 and therefore eliminated.

In the Conference record, Washington will be 7-5 and the Cowboys will only be 6-6, and eliminated.

Therefore, how can the Redskins NOT win the division??

Maybe there’s some part of the formula I’ve missed but I cannot see what it might be.

If anyone knows the answer to this mystery, I would love to know. I left a query at NFL.com but have yet to see an answer.