Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Catching up Part 1: NFL


Hines Ward, with the KISSSSSS! (NFL.com)

Thoughts about the Super Bowl

Normally the Super Bowl is either a dominating coronation of the best team in the league, or a close struggle that is a game for the ages. So where does this fit in? Yes, Pittsburgh won, and deservedly so because they cashed in when Seattle couldn't. But the Steelers didn't dominate. In fact Seattle had more total yards and first downs.

I have the same feeling about the MVP. I really have no problem with Hines Ward winning, it's just there really wasn't a game changing or dominating performance by anyone.

I have a thought about Mike Holmgren's post-game comments about the officiating, it's just not something I want to print. Still, the officials served him a softball with the way they've been officiating this entire postseason, especially with the way they've called the instant replay. You have to wonder if the officials are blowing some of these replay calls to try and get replay thrown out.

The combine: Emphasis on "Wonder"

People are making way to much of a deal about Vince Young's alleged score of 6 on the Wonderlic test. The guy's got the football smarts and the intangibles to play QB at the NFL level. He'll show the physical abilities soon enough.

Now, you NFL personnel people don't have to completely hate on Vince, just hate on him enough to drop him down to the Cowboys' pick.

OK, back to reality...

The labor dispute: What labor dispute?

Former Oakland A's owner Charlie O. Finley once said that baseball should just forget about arbitration and make every player a free agent.

The union head at the time, Marvin Miller, reportedly hoped he was joking.

Why? Miller knew better than anyone that a market with a few key free agents creates scarcity and drives the salaries up, but a market flooded with free agents means demand outpaces supply and the salaries go down.

So what does this have to do with football?

Well, everyone seems to have been sweating the potential for an "uncapped" year when, in reality, it would have been a nightmare for the players.

See, a lot of players don't get cut from NFL rosters because owners are afraid of the dead cap space created when players with large signing bonuses are cut or traded. An uncapped year meant owners could sign freely, but they could also cut freely too which would have flooded the market with free agents.

Now you know why the players association caved again.

By the way, kudos to the NFL for getting this CBA done years ahead of time.

The Dallas Cowboys become "Dallas" the soap opera

Yeah, I know, I know, Terrell Owens is a Cowboy now.

And I'm glad to see a receiver with his talent, work ethic, and lack of arrest record on the Cowboys.

But I can't see this ending up anything but badly.

First off, Terrell's already on a short leash in Dallas, no thanks little stunt he pulled with the star some years ago. He may be a Cowboy, and there's not going to be a rush of people turning in their season tickets over this, but that doesn't mean Cowboys fans are automatically going to accept him in their uniform. If he doesn't produce a Super Bowl this year, Cowboys fans will let him have it.

Secondly, the Cowboys are already depleted at offensive line, and they just let future hall of famer Larry Allen go. And we all know that without a quality O-line, Drew Bledsoe is never gonna get Owens the football. And when Owens ain't getting the football, that's when the side of Terrell Owens that gets him in trouble comes out.

Thirdly, his coach is Bill Parcells. Parcells is practically bullet-proof when it comes to the media. We're talking about the only white male in the last 30 years of political correctness to utter the word "j*p" in a public setting and not get fired because of it. Terrell Owens may be able to hold his own in a PR battle with Steve Mariucci or Andy Reid, but he cannot possibly win a PR battle with Bill Parcells. At least if he had gone to Denver, he would have had a fighting chance in a PR battle with Mike Shanahan, who's coaching acumen has been frequently questioned since John Elway retired.

And it will be worse for Owens if Parcells quits or gets fired, because Owens will get the blame for that too (even if it's not his fault), which just will push him into Kobe Bryant territory.

Finally, there's too many potential match lighters in that locker room now. From Roy Williams, who almost ended Terrell Owens' season 2 years ago, to Mike Vanderjagt, who's not afraid to throw a guy under the bus himself, there's too many people who could potentially set Terrell off.

If any team is screaming for a reality show, it's this team.
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