by NFL Gimpy (follow him on Twitter so that he can catch up to Ashton Kutcher)
Instead of a long, rambling, probably not going anywhere 2 or 3 stories like I normally give you, I felt like giving a bunch of little stories, mostly because I couldn’t think of anything to ramble about.
It’s starting to become that time of year again where NFL players get in a bunch of trouble with the law. Once mini-camps start to wind down (even though they aren’t done) it seems like players get in more trouble. David Diehl got a DUI over the weekend, some guy on the Chiefs got punched, and I’m pretty sure between the Lions and Bengals someone had to have been arrested in the past week.
Diehl apparently was so hammered he hit multiple parked cars. I’m surprised a player like Diehl made this mistake because he’s in New York City. There are taxis everywhere. There’s a subway that’s normally quicker than driving. I know you’re a big NFL star but seriously dude, if you hit parked cars, I’m impressed you were able to walk to your car.
Last week I ranted about how stupid NFL players must be because they have a program available that will drive them home if too drunk or tired to drive. Well, it turns out that program is in limbo. First the NFL discontinued it and now it’s back for a small fee of $85. I think the NFL is wrong to change how this program works because these idiots didn’t use the program when it was free, you think they’ll pay for it? I will never understand how a guy, who makes at least 6 or 7 times what I make, is unable to make a decision I made in college while broke and drunk. Take the bus or a taxi.
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I’m thankful I don’t live in New York City because I can barely tolerate Tebow stories as is. There will never be a player as hyped as Tebow ever again (Ed. note – what about Tebow Jr?). Can you fathom the fact that Denver is thankful the media storm is gone when they just signed Peyton Manning? They added one of the best QBs of all time to their roster and the frenzy dies down. Tebow was a late first round pick and has one playoff win. Manning will have more NFL records than I can count by the time he retires.
I get the whole “role model” image he portrays. He’s a good guy who works hard and, by all accounts, practices what he preaches. But it is so overboard it’s not even funny. I can think of a laundry list of players who I would consider better football players and better role models. If you aren’t familiar with the work Warrick Dunn has done, I highly recommend you research it.
Dunn has purchased/built and furnished dozens of homes for single mothers because of what he went through as a child. But I guess because he isn’t on a podium to make sure everyone knows how great he is, we rarely get to hear about the work this former NFL player has done.
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There are a lot of training camp battles that are going to be exciting. It’s always crazy to see a QB race because of that old saying “If you think you have 2 QBs you actually have none.” Or something like that. Essentially if you don’t have one QB separate himself from the other, you’re in trouble. Even in college where some teams will use 2 QBs you’ll see one guy eventually separate himself and take the job.
Tommy is always on my case to mention Penn State more without a certain dog and pony show that starts today (I’ll keep my thoughts on that out of this article) and a good example was the Matt McGloin-Rob Bolden race. PSU used 2 QBs and got mixed results. Now, I’m not saying McGloin is a great QB, but from my anti-PSU glasses (they’re pink in honor of PSU’s former colors) the team improved when they stuck with one guy. There’s a reason you never see it in the NFL: it doesn’t even work long term in college. (Ed. note – next week could we get 1,000 words on the greatness of Anthony Morelli?)
That’s why these upcoming QB battles in the NFL are so vital – you can’t have 2 QBs. Sure you can mix in a few trick plays here and there or give a guy some mop up duty, but you need a clear #1 QB. This isn’t like RBs, WRs, DEs, or LBs where you can mix and match or rotate. This makes the battles in Tennessee, Seattle, Miami, Arizona, and Cleveland so important.
I think a few of those teams will have true battles (Tennessee, Miami) but I don’t think that can be said of Cleveland, Seattle, or Arizona. Cleveland needs 1st round pick Brandon Weeden to win the job. He’s older than Colt McCoy yet he’s the QB of the future? If he doesn’t win the job this year, the pick looks like a waste. The entire reason you draft an 84-year old QB is because he has the maturity to start right away.
In Seattle, they gave Matt Flynn a pretty good contract and if he doesn’t start over Tavaris Jackson, the signing looks awful. Same thing in Arizona, if Kevin Kolb doesn’t win the gig, John Skelton better be top flight QB material or someone is going to lose their job over that trade.
Tennessee is a true battle this year, but unless Matt Hasselbeck keeps them in playoff contention all season, Jake Locker will be the starter at some point in 2012. The Titans have a rough start to the season with games against the Texans, Patriots, Chargers, and Lions. A 1-3 start for Hasselbeck will get him the hook. Miami is a bit different. Matt Moore was the team MVP last year and David Garrard is a solid veteran. Both players can win games in the NFL. Ryan Tannehill is a first round pick, but he won’t see the field this year if he doesn’t look ready or if Garrard/Moore do a good job.
Even with talented options, I’ll bet my entire pay from Scoutsnotebook that none of these teams make the playoffs. I don’t think a team who isn’t sure who their starting QB will be making any noise in December. Any takers? Tommy or Matt, feel free to tell them what they’ll win. I know it’ll be enticing. (Ed. note – eleventy billion pesos or a box full of mustard packets…most un-opened)
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-Gronk (Rob Gronkowski, TE of the Patriots) got a heck of a contract extension. I don’t care to dig into numbers too much but it’s a contract that looks like a win-win for both sides. Gronk had one of the best seasons a TE has ever had and now he’s locked up long term. AFC teams are not happy.
-My next random 2012 season prediction: Matt Flynn wins the starting gig in Seattle and has a Pro Bowl level season. I’m not saying he’ll make the Pro Bowl, just that his stats will be worthy of a Pro Bowl nod. Even with great stats, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Cam Newton, and Matt Stafford will be too tough for him to pass his first year.
-Ochocinco will be on the Miami Dolphins. It just makes too much sense. They have a huge hole at WR and they’re going to be on Hard Knocks? That’s a match made in heaven for a marketing genius like Ochocinco.
-Happy Birthday to Vince Lombardi. He would have been 99 years old today. I believe this story was told by John Madden but I could be wrong. Apparently Madden was at a coaching clinic hosted by Lombardi. Madden thought he knew a lot about football and was excited to learn from a legend. Lombardi walked up and spoke for hours on end about the Packer Sweep. The play was a simple sweep play where both guards pulled and NFL legend Paul Hornung was told to “run to daylight.”
I want to emphasize that. He spoke for several hours about one play. That’s the kind of perfection and attention to detail he had. Madden said he left the room feeling clueless because he realized just how little he actually knew. Lombardi was able to talk about one play for 8 hours and knew every possible detail that could possible come up.
My memory could be making this whole story up, but it doesn’t involve alien abductions or Victoria’s Secret models, so I think it’s correct. (Ed. note – Gimpy is correct and chose a good story to share)
-I give a ton of credit to the New Jersey Devils. Down 3 games to 0, they’ve rallied to make it 3-2. I still don’t think they’ll pull off the miracle and win 2 more, but Marty Brodeur is refusing to go down, even at 40 years old. You could see at the end of Game 5 that the Kings just didn’t seem to want it as much. If that attitude doesn’t change, this series will go 7. In Game 7, anything can happen.