Tuesday, July 26, 2011

8 comments MMQB Review: End of the Lockout Edition

Today we get a two-for-one deal with MMQB. Not only is Peter King back from his vacation (and you wouldn't BELIEVE how annoying it was for him), but the NFL lockout is over. We are all so proud of the players and owners for not ruining a billion dollar enterprise. Congratulations to all involved with getting the lockout done, you managed to not murder your cash cow! What an accomplishment.

Today, Peter gives us information on the new CBA agreement, tells us about his vacation and informs the media that we in the public don't like Brett Favre...while giving us an update on Brett Favre. You know I am not kidding about this.

And I thought after my annual four-week travelogue I could just ease back into the 15th season of Monday Morning Quarterback.

Because immediately after a month-long vacation you do need some time to rest a little bit. What else did he expect? It is hell for nearly everyone anytime you go on vacation and then have to go back to work. You know, 40,000 people want to be called or emailed back right now.

Nope. Gotta hit the ground running. No time to waste. A deal is certain to be announced after both sides agreed to terms to end the lockout early Monday pending the players' vote.

Now Peter will go through each part of the agreement, which is actually pretty helpful. Especially for someone like me who hasn't cared to really pay attention to each side's whining and posturing through this process.

I'm told chances are very good that the deal will include an opt-out for both sides, not just the players.

You may not believe this, but Peter was wrong about this. It's only like the 9,000th time in the past five years. Reportedly, and thank God for this, there is no opt-out. If there were, the CBA would be like the Presidential Election where we have to hear about it two-and-half years before it actually happens. As Gregg Easterbrook would say, it would be CBA Opt-Out Creep!

But I must stress that this was the latest version of the opt-out being discussed as the clock neared midnight, and it won't necessarily be the one that is announced today when the deal gets done.

I need this job. I need to go to work and say, "Here's my answer right now. Though it will probably change and though you pay me to know whether this will change or not so I can pass this knowledge on, I just can't tell you right now because things are moving SO DAMN FAST! Can I get a raise?"

Frankly, I believe most NFL general managers and coaches would prefer a Tuesday start because they don't want the beginning of free agency going on at the same time as the start of training camp this weekend.

Free agency is going to be a clusterfuck this year. It's going to be crazy if it plays out like I think it may over a 4-5 day span. I would guess some players are going to either (a) sign shorter term deals {2-3 years for the younger free agents} (b) make bad free agency decisions or (c) sign with their original team. I could be wrong.

Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio reported Sunday that the league could unilaterally cut the preseason schedule from four games to two in '13 or any subsequent year of the agreement. The players would have the option to either play 16 regular-season games and two preseason games, or increase the regular season to 18 games per team. The upshot: Players would lose money if they stayed at 16 plus two.

Those crazy owners! Putting the 18 game schedule back on the board.

So, the owners have put a proposal out there for an 18 game season if they unilaterally cut out preseason games, but would there be zero preseason games or would there be 2 preseason games? Either way, I don't see this 18 game schedule happening because I don't see the players wanting to choose to play 18 games when they could play 16 games and have two preseason games.

Florio wrote that it's a staredown between the owners and players, and I agree. Preseason games are easy money for the NFL, and the owners wouldn't risk the players saying, "Oh, we'll let those two exhibition games go and reduce our take.''

I think I'm confused. So the players would make less for a 16 game season once the owners unilaterally cut the preseason schedule and the players choose not to play 18 games? If a guy makes $4 million per year, that is based on a 16 game schedule, so he could make MORE than that if two extra games are added? But he would make that exact original amount if no games are added and two preseason games are played? I will eventually need further clarification of this at some point.

Barring an opt-out ("It's just an insurance policy,'' Houston co-player-rep Eric Winston told me), this deal runs through the 2021 NFL Draft. Brett Favre will be completing his 30th season then. He'll be only 52.

Brett Favre jokes aren't even funny at this point. I learned that in the podcast from yesterday. No one likes talking about Favre, even in a joking manner.

Men who play in a game in any season of this deal will be eligible to stay in the NFL medical plan for life. Currently, retired players have five years of post-career health care. Just saw Eddie George, looking like an Adonis, at the Super Bowl last February, and he said his medical benefits just ran out a couple of months earlier. "Now's not the time I need 'em,'' he told me.

I'm going to be the non-caring jackass about this issue for Eddie George. He earned millions in his career in the NFL, so I fail to feel bad for him when it comes to medical benefits. It is the guys who played in the NFL before it became such a gold mine I feel badly for.

This went over everyone's heads all weekend. Let's say a player signs a three-year, $6-million contract with a $2-million bonus and salaries of $1.1 million, $1.3 million and $1.6 million. And say he gets a career-ending injury in game five of the first season. He keeps his bonus. He keeps his first-year salary. That's normal. Now he'd get to keep $1 million of his year-two salary and $500,000 of year three. In the old days, he'd have been able to keep the bonus and year-one salary, a total of $3.1 million. Now he'd be able to pocket $4.6 million because of the maximum of $1.5 million in injury-protection money.

This is probably a good thing.

Teams can have 14 per regular season, including only three in the last six weeks of the season. Grumbling leaguewide has begun over the sissification of the NFL; coaches won't be able to toughen up soft teams anymore.

"Not sure this is a very big deal,'' Winston of the Texans said. "We had the leading rusher in the league last year [Arian Foster] and I bet we only had 17 padded practices all season.'

Oh yes, and I remember the deep playoff run the Texans went on last year as well. Great point Eric Winston. You had 17 practices and the leading rusher in the NFL, so clearly it all worked out well with limited practices for you. Let's ignore the fact the Texans weren't breaking in a new coaching staff, new quarterback or anything like that at the beginning of the season, nor did they lose their starting quarterback when the season began. So the padded practices during the year may not as been as necessary for them. I don't really know if these practices are important or not, but simply because the Texans had the leading rusher and only (supposedly) had 17 padded practices doesn't mean they aren't necessary for other teams.

Most in the football establishment, like this well-respected GM, don't like the changes that have players on the field less. "We complain about tackling all the time,'' he said. "How are we gonna teach tackling without practicing tackling enough? I will not be surprised if you see the smashmouth game disappear.''

I hate to point it out to this well-respected GM (Bill Polian, is that you?), but the smashmouth game of football has disappeared already. This should be abundantly clear to anyone who has watched the NFL over the last 3-4 years. I doubt the 14 padded practices are going to get rid of smashmouth football any faster than the natural evolution of the NFL towards a passing-oriented league seems to be doing.

I heard it all this weekend -- that the game will turn into the college spread offense, that lack of fundamental work will make the game sloppy, that new coaches who used tough training camps to toughen their teams won't be able to do that anymore. Maybe. But the smartest football coaches in the world -- all of whom will be playing by the same set of restrictive rules -- will learn to adapt.

Apparently Peter agrees with me on this.

But at the end of the day, the players demanded the opt-out because too many of them have zero trust for the owners. I mean, zero. It's been interesting to talk to a few of them over the weekend, off the record, in what should be a very happy time for them and realize how little they trust the men who employ them. Sad, really.

How many people really trust their bosses or their organization? Peter probably trusts Sports Illustrated and NBC Sports because he is entrenched both places, most likely is on great teams with his boss and it isn’t as easy to replace him because there isn’t a constant stream of sportswriters out of college who are as qualified as he is (ok…maybe there are, but they won’t get hired to replace him). What world does Peter live in where he thinks it is more sad, and less just normal, for an employee to not trust those who employ him? Sometime I think Peter lives in a different economy and a different United States as everyone else. How many employed people really can say they completely trust their bosses?

My buddy Phil Parisi of the USO (we went on the USO's Afghanistan tour in 2008) volunteered to have one of the huge USO vans used for domestic entertainment of troops and their families made available for me to take my tour of camps this year (pictured at right).

Sounds like Peter’s whining from last year about how he wanted his own bus paid off. He now has a USO bus to travel around the country…you know, because traveling by car and staying in hotels is for paupers, not Peter King. He needs a bus to travel.

Then Peter talks about the NFL Networks Top 100 NFL players list, which I ignored (I am getting concerned over how much NFL-related stuff I ignore) because I don’t care what the players think. I don’t trust them to get a list of the Top 100 players in the NFL together accurately in other words.

Of course, I'm not sure I should trust Peter King to do this either. He did put Ben Roethlisberger as a top-10 player in the NFL. I'm not sure he is a top-10 NFL player simply because quarterbacks are in high demand and he would be taken early in an NFL re-draft (where all the players are put into a pool and drafted). Roethlisberger is a great quarterback, but I'm not sure he is a top-10 NFL player.

Yes, Tramon Williams is 16 on my list. He's young, big and clutch, and the only two corners better right now are Darrelle Revis and Nnamdi Asomugha. That Williams didn't make the player list is, well, a horrible omission.

Tramon Williams is clutch. Not sure I’ve ever heard a cornerback be referred to as clutch.

Free agency will be interesting. How long has it been since a top-10 player in the game, which Asomugha is, has been unrestricted?

I believe Julius Peppers was a free agent last year. Also, it is completely arguable whether Asomugha is a top-10 player in the NFL. The players have him at #18. So Peter is basing this statement on his own subjective opinion that Asomugha is a top-10 player in the NFL. I find it delightful that Peter ranks a player, using his own opinion of that player’s ranking and nothing more, and then makes this statement. It's like he has set his own criteria and then is amazed at what result his criteria yields.

I guess what I’m saying is Julius Peppers could have been considered a top-10 player last year and he was an unrestricted free agent. Drew Brees is now #4 on Peter’s list and he was an unrestricted free agent when he signed with the Dolphins. Mike Vick is #19 on Peter’s list and no team wanted him as unrestricted free agent. Is that extraordinary? Does it prove something? Perhaps I’m being too critical.

Maybe Julius Peppers two years ago, but it certainly doesn't happen often.

Except for last year in free agency when it may have happened.

One of the great things about vacation is it lets you catch up with reading. This gem came from Andrew Goldman's interview with Judge Judy in the June 26 New York Times Sunday magazine: Judge Judy works five days per month ... and makes $45 million a year.

Judge Judy Factoid II: Her 24,000-square-foot home in Connecticut contains a snoring room -- an extra room for guests who snore.

I think we can all agree this is ridiculous. I bet Judge Judy doesn’t have her own USO bus though! Point for Peter King.

Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week

Well, I have many.

This should not come as a shock to anyone who reads Peter King’s MMQB regularly. He is more than willing to complain about his vacation and those ignorant, pathetic lower class, moronic pests known as “the general public” that Peter has to endure while making his way in the world.

The personal space thing is just weird. In Venice, we stood in line for a water ferry to take us from the train station to San Marco Square. The line moved slowly, and the 30ish woman behind me kept leaning on me, as if it would make the line go faster. After the third forearm/breast push into my back, I turned and held my palm out, moving it up and down, as if to say, "Relax.''

Little did this woman know with whom she was messing. Peter suffers fools ever-so-lightly. When you get up on Peter when he is traveling, he goes all Charles Bronson in “Death Wish”…or at least he wants to.

It was no use, at the first sign of space to my left, she and her friend squeezed to our left and got on the ferry a few people in front of us. I should say that we all got on the same ferry, which arrived at the same time, and we all got off within seconds of each other.

Foreigners are morons!

Lines, too, were just foreign. It's every man, woman and idiot for him/herself. In line at a Trieste bank to change some dollars into euros, I noticed a teller signaling he was ready to take me. An older lady came from the back of the line, saying something that sounded like "Scoozy, scoozy,'' and cut in front of me, and the teller took her.

You know that slow guy in line? The one who doesn’t seem to be paying a damn bit of attention to what is going on in front of him? The one who reacts about 30 seconds too late when he is acknowledged to receiver customer service and clearly has no idea what he is doing? That must be Peter King. I’m guessing the teller had been signaling for a few seconds and Peter was too busy working his Blackberry or staring at the other people in line as he is prone to do in public (seriously, whenever Peter tells a story about a “crazy” or “bizarre” person on a train, he is always staring at them. If he didn’t pay attention to them, he probably would have nothing to complain about), so the lady just cut in front of him. That’s my hypothesis.

In a queue for coffee at the Vienna airport, a man behind me, in German (the national language of Austria), shouted his order over the meeker me, and when I said something like, "Hey, my turn,'' the bilingual barista said, "I make his first.''

See? I think he is just really slow to react. I've been to Europe and no one busted in front of me in line.

Italy's such a terrific place, with great people. Austria is an orderly country, from what I can tell, and everyone there was good to us.

They were great except for their blatant disregard of lines. Other than that Austria was very orderly…which is a very weird way to describe a country. For the record, I have been to Austria and experienced no line-breaking. Though I did experience water without ice and bread that was rock hard.

Why the terminal rudeness while co-waiting? I'd love to hear some plausible explanation from some of you who have lived, or who live, in Europe.

Yes, those people from Europe who read Peter’s column, write in and explain these actions to the great Peter King. Peter asks, no demands, an explanation for why he was treated so poorly by your countrymen and the entire continent of Europe...which Peter appears to believe only consists of Italy and Austria.

I like how Peter visited Vienna and Venice, but it is all of Europe where he believes this line-cutting is a problem. Nothing like taking incidents that occurred in two countries and just assume the rest of Europe has the same problems.

"I would be honored to have Brett Farve as a backup. That will be amazing Learning how to toy with defenses the way he did.''

-- @mikevick, the Eagles quarterback, tweeting Sunday about the rumor of the oft-retired Hattiesburgian coming back to the NFL. As a backup.

This is the second time, so far, in this column that Peter King has brought up Brett Favre. This will be relevant very soon.

3.Vienna. So many parks, so little time. Parks and beer. That is one underrated city.

Vienna is an incredibly underrated city. Why doesn’t Vienna get more attention? Perhaps a musician should write a song called Vienna about the city. I can’t believe Monocle magazine only rated it the 8th most livable city. If a city could be underrated, then I think Vienna would be that underrated city.

You know what is an underrated state? Hawaii. More people should know about that place! Peter discovered it just a few years ago!

Our last night there, we went to see an orchestra dressed in period costume and playing Mozart's greatest hits. Amazing how many of those pieces are recognizable.

It’s crazy how many of those pieces were recognizable! Not as recognizable as U2’s hits are though! You still have a long way to go, Mozart, in order to catch up with Bono and his band in terms of being a hitmaker.

Dear Vienna and Europe,

I am sorry. Peter King is back in the United States now. Fear not, your national crisis is over. Again, I am sorry.



I've blown smoke at Osteria Giotto on Midland Avenue in Montclair a few times, like the time I took Brandon Jacobs of the Giants there two nights before the Giants and Pack played in the NFC Championship Game –

Notice how Peter wasn’t working on a story about Brandon Jacobs, he just took him out to eat and it certainly seems like he paid for the dinner. To those people who accuse Peter of wanting to be friends with the subjects he covers…well, you may be right. I know he has to work sources and contacts with each team, but maybe I need to be informed on “the line” between socializing with a player you are covering and getting information on the team from that player you can report on. I think "the line" is where Peter actually gets useful information from these players.

What’s so funny is that I can’t think of one time in the 3 years I have been covering MMQB here where Peter King had a bit of information about a team that was broken as news by him. I respect him as a sportswriter, but he cultivates this contacts and I can't think of an NFL-related story he has broken. What’s interesting is Peter has actually indicated he knew about some news and didn’t report on it (I can't remember what this involved, but I know there was a situation and Peter later admitted he knew more about that situation but didn't reveal his knowledge). Isn’t he supposed to be an NFL insider? If not, what is Peter’s role? Decipher news other NFL reporters break and tell us about his vacations? Maybe I am just being jaded and don’t understand the value of eating dinner with Brandon Jacobs.

Got the ESPN book read. (Sheesh. The anger against SI from Steve Bornstein. Relax. The world's big enough for all of us, Steve.) Lots of knowledge in the book, but I can't help but think some of the real cornerstone players who've been there for the last two decades or so -- Chris Mortensen, Sal Paolantonio -- really got short-shrifted in the story of why ESPN has become so omnipresent. It's guys like Mort who made ESPN appointment television for people who love sports and need the knowledge.

Exactly. If it weren’t for Chris Mortensen, I wouldn’t know what to believe is true. When Mort reports that Player X is going to sign with Team X, then I know it isn’t going to happen. He has always helped me narrow down what NFL information is true and what isn’t by reporting on what won’t happen.

I tweeted my ranking of the ballparks last week, now that I've been in every one except the Rogers Centre (nee SkyDome). And, lockout be damned, my feed got overwhelmed with people telling me -- surprise! -- I had no idea what I was talking about. Folks, it's just personal preference. Here goes again, with a quick comment on each:

I always enjoy when Peter gets sarcastic about people disagreeing vehemently with his opinion. He throws out his personal list of favorite ballparks and then gets all offended when people disagree with him. It is just personal preference, but when a public writer throws out his public opinion on a subject he gets feedback. If you don’t want feedback on your rankings (a) don’t make rankings or (b) don’t write a national column many people read and include your ballpark rankings in this column. Don’t get all offended and say “it is just personal preference” like you are shocked people disagree with you.

1. Fenway Park (Red Sox) -- Too cramped, but it's my ballpark-away-from-home.

No shock here. What is shocking is Peter King has a ballpark in his house? Doesn’t he live in Boston? So Fenway is his home ballpark? No?

8. Dodger Stadium (Dodgers) -- Park's fine. Feel of a Perry Mason episode. Real L.A.

We are taking ballpark information from someone who says Dodgers stadium feels like a Perry Mason episode. I don't even know what that means. How interesting the Bryan Stow incident happened at Dodger Stadium and time was spent searching for the assailants. Maybe that's why the ballpark feels like a Perry Mason episode. I am sure that’s not what Peter meant of course.

21. Nationals Park (Nationals) -- A little cold, but a good effort. Gotta win a little.

Oh, so winning means the ballpark is better? Not sure I get that correlation, especially since Safeco Field was 6th on Peter’s list. I guess the beer in Safeco makes for a good environment even without the winning.

23. Citi Field (Mets) -- Weird place. Home of the Dodgers or the Mets?

The Mets. Why would Citi Field be the home of the Dodgers?

We all know Peter is a Red Sox fan. I find it interesting he ranked the other ballparks of the other teams in the AL East at 12th, 26th, 28th, and didn't rank one because he hasn't been there (Rogers Centre). This may be completely inconsequential of course, but I think it is interesting as to how “the feel” of a ballpark is affected by how you feel about that team.

1. I think I've never looked forward to a training-camp odyssey as much as this year. Think of how many teams have compelling stories -- and on top of it all, one of those camps is going to have Nnamdi Asomugha walk into it.

I really like Nnamdi Asomugha, but what is Peter’s fascination with him? He is going to be highly wanted, but Peter is just absolutely fascinated that a player of Asomugha’s caliber is going to be a free agent in this offseason.

2. I think Asomugha wants to play for the Jets. Great idea, but would any team in football pay its starting corners one-quarter of the entire salary cap? That's about what it would take to pair Nnamdi with Darrelle Revis.

Welcome to the Monday Morning Asomugha with Peter King.

3. I think I doubt Brett Favre would come back to play another year of football, though if he's going to back up anyone anywhere, it would be Mike Vick in Philadelphia.

Here we go. Peter King is now discussing Brett Favre. Wait for him to now scold a television network for showing video of Favre.

Media maestro Howard Eskin reported the possibility of this Saturday night; Jay Glazer solidly knocked it down Sunday. And so it goes. I'm not buying it. But Favre loves Andy Reid, his Green Bay quarterback coach in 1997 and '98. He loves Doug Pederson (who was in Favre's foursome in California when Favre got the news of his father's death the day before that game in Oakland in 2003),

Peter probably can’t remember his wedding anniversary date, but he remembers who was in Favre’s foursome when he got news of his father’s death. Maybe Peter is a little too close to Favre? Maybe by “a little” it means “a hell of a lot” in this case.

Why not hold a clipboard for $4 million for five months? I believe it will not happen. But we shall see.

Because if Brett Favre comes back, I will go insane. That’s why it can't happen.

4. I think, by the way, I almost gagged when NFL Network -- which I believe did an outstanding job Thursday night into Friday covering the owners and players in "Let's Make a Deal'' -- ran an inspirational reel of Favre highlights Sunday night.

I'm not a TV programmer, but a note to NFLNet: Fans hate Brett Favre right now.

Yet Peter doesn’t stop talking about Favre in print. I’m not a sportswriter, but the same shit that goes for everyone being tired of Favre on television goes for Favre in print. I can't believe the audacity of Peter King to have mentioned and discussed Brett Favre DIRECTLY ABOVE the section of MMQB where he gives television programmers advice that people are tired of Favre so they should quit mentioning and showing his image.

THEN HOW ABOUT YOU QUIT WRITING ABOUT HIM? How does this advice not go for Favre information in print? It doesn’t. Peter gives sage advice that NFL fans hate Favre, yet he doesn’t follow his own damn advice.

Fans don't want to see the same highlights you ran 63 times when he retired two years ago and then 63 times again last winter. It makes them throw bricks through TVs, which is not good for ratings.

(shaking head sadly)

Fans don’t want to read about Favre either. It makes me want to throw a brick through my computer. How does Peter not get this?

Sometimes I honestly think TV does more damage to Favre than Favre does to Favre.

Oh no. Favre with his insatiable need for attention does more damage to himself. He craves the attention and that’s why he is given the attention. If he would just retire/unretired quietly and not draw it out into a long, drawn-out “will he/won’t he” issue then he wouldn’t get the attention. But Brett Favre loves the attention. He desires it and that’s why he gets it. Over the last four years, he could have made the focus on him go away and he not only chose not to, but he chose to draw-out his decision to retire or not retire in order to get more media attention. He does more damage to himself, but he does have a lot of help.

6. I think the Jacksonville Jaguars are going to be very, very busy in free agency.

I think every team is going to be very, very busy in free agency.

7. I think this is the first time ever a free-agency period has 10 solid starters at an important position like cornerback. I don't recall ever seeing one spot so full of restricted and unrestricted guys who can help a good team. From Nnamdi Asomugha all the way down to Kelly Jennings, it's a heck of a solid group.

Stop talking about Nnamdi Asomugha! He’s an unrestricted free agent. Whoop-de-fucking-doo!

8. I think if Asomugha had his way, he'd sign with the Jets. The coach, the team, the city, the causes ... it all appeals to him.

I wish I was making this up. That is four of Peter’s “I Think” statements dedicated to Nnamdi Asomugha. He is a great cornerback, but there are other potential free agents that can be discussed in this space.

As Rich Cimini astutely pointed out the other day on his Jets blog, they could restructure Mark Sanchez and Darrelle Revis (due to count a total of $27.8 million against the cap this year), and they could take linebacker David Harris' franchise number of $10.4 million this year and lower it by converting it into the first year of a long-term contract. Remember, Santonio Holmes is a priority to sign, so assume that would take about $7 million this year. The Jets would probably have to cut two or three vets and not re-sign Antonio Cromartie to have any chance of getting into Asomugha's financial league -- even if it means Asomugha would take significantly less to go to New Jersey than, say, to Dallas or Houston.

Well, I will be on pins and needles to see what happens, since the fate of the free world will be determined by how the Jets spend their cap space.

g. Really, Larry David: You're playing a nun in the Three Stooges movie? Sister Mary-Mengele?

I think Nnamdi Asomugha would be better in that part. Let’s talk about his free agency again!

k. We overstate the value and goodness of a lot of people -- famous and otherwise -- but it would be hard to overstate the generosity and humanity of Myra Kraft.

Nnamdi Asomugha. He’s a great guy too. He is a philanthropist, a great cornerback, and has a wonderful foundation. Nnamdi Asomugha. Great guy. Potential free agent.

m. Beernerdness: Lots of bitter beer in Vienna. We found one I really liked at a sidewalk caf on a hot afternoon that reminded me of the white beers I've been trending toward lately, and it was a German brew: Schneider weisse hefe-weizenbier. A hefeweizen, of course. Citrusy. The server looked at me oddly when I asked for a lemon.

Yes Peter, there’s a reason I don’t drink Blue Moon with an orange in public. Also, if the drink was citrusy then the server may have wondered why you needed more citrus with it. Of course as we all know, when Peter stares at people in public it is because they are acting strangely, but when people stare at Peter it is because they are just weird people.

n. Very good to be back. Looking forward to one of the strangest years since I started covering pro football in 1984.

In the podcast, I said I was a “6” on a scale of 1-10 for football. There’s just so many things up in the air right now before I know what my favorite team will look like in terms of free agent signings, signing their own players, and all of that, it is hard to get excited. I do know I will probably go to an “8” once training camp starts.

Football is back! Of course, that means Gregg Easterbrook is as well.


ivn said...

The Mets. Why would Citi Field be the home of the Dodgers?

I think he was bringing up the large amount of Brooklyn Dodgers history/memorabilia that Citi Field has.

From Nnamdi Asomugha all the way down to Kelly Jennings, it's a heck of a solid group.

did he seriously just use "Kelly Jennings" and "solid" in the same sentence? that should never happen unless the sentence is, "Kelly Jennings plays like a solid lump of diarrhea; just a complete pile of shit."

An older lady came from the back of the line, saying something that sounded like "Scoozy, scoozy,'' and cut in front of me, and the teller took her.

how can he travel to Italy and not know what the Italian term for "excuse me" is? how can a university-educated, ostensibly well-read (he constantly talks about how much he reads) man live for fifty-four years without knowing that Hitler was born in Austria? how can he look himself in the mirror every morning?

rich said...

I could just ease back into the 15th season of Monday Morning Quarterback.

Isn't the entire off-season of writing about very little akin to "easing into"? Oh no, the job he gets paid an absorbanent amount of money to do for half the year doesn't give him any off weeks! WAAAAHHHHHHHHH

"How are we gonna teach tackling without practicing tackling enough? I will not be surprised if you see the smashmouth game disappear.''

This is a problem with the logic. If you're an NFL player (i.e. you're over the age of 20) and you don't know proper tackling techniques, odds are you're probably never going to learn them.

You know what you can also do? Use tackling dummies and just go 3/4 speed and have them go without the pads.

How long has it been since a top-10 player in the game, which Asomugha is, has been unrestricted?

Peyton Manning - 2011
Ray Lewis - 2009
Asante Samuel - 2008
Randy Moss - 2008
Drew Brees - 2006 (Kind of stretching it a bit, but he was given a bazillion dollars to leave SD)
Ty Law - 2006
Orlando Pace - 2005

So... almost every year? It just happens that most of those players resigned with their original teams.

The line moved slowly, and the 30ish woman behind me kept leaning on me, as if it would make the line go faster.

This happens all the time. All the fucking time. If you don't like it, say something, but since I doubt sir Peter knows a lick of Italian, he couldn't.

Also, having just come back from the Southern part of Italy (the only good thing to come out of grad school), a lot of this is due to the fact that their customs are a different than ours. Stores close between 2pm and 5pm on the weekends, no one is really out between 1 and 6pm, etc. You either learn to adapt or you GTFO of the country you're visiting.

Why the terminal rudeness while co-waiting? I'd love to hear some plausible explanation from some of you who have lived, or who live, in Europe.

You know what it is you fat fuck? You don't speak their language and when they see you dicking around, speaking to the people around you in English, they'll act as if they can't communicate with you and will act accordingly. It's not like they can tap you on the shoulder and say "move your fat ass."

Other than grocery stores, Italy didn't really have "lines," they had big waiting areas and you kind of had to figure out where you were in line and order. It's not wrong, it just requires you to have your big boy panties on. Peter's stories are all in places that are like this. There aren't really lines, they just happen to rely on the people who are there to be grown up enough to realize when they need to order.

Yes, it gets frustrating sometimes, but again, you're visiting their country, there are going to be things that seem weird, just like the idea of "tipping" a server is when they visit our country.

3. I think I doubt Brett Favre would come back to play another year of football, though if he's going to back up anyone anywhere, it would be Mike Vick in Philadelphia.

Remember when he "retired" instead of backing up a guy who is currently a Super Bowl winning QB? Why would Favre go anywhere to be a fucking backup?

2. I think Asomugha wants to play for the Jets.

Hey Ben, I think your blog is great.

8. I think if Asomugha had his way, he'd sign with the Jets.

Hey Ben, I think your blog is great.

Darrelle Revis

Remember when Revis held out to get out of his last contract? I'm sure he'd be totally cool with restructuring the deal he just signed last year.

Martin F. said...

When do you start the Fantasy Football League? Perhaps you could invite Peter to join us this year? And I think that Asomugha wants to join the Packers or some other pressing coverage team. The Jets run a lot of blitzes and zone blitz coverages, not Nnamdi's strong point.

Bengoodfella said...

Ivn, clearly I haven't been to the park though I probably should have known that. Peter's references are above my head apparently.

I know very little a/b Kelly Jennings, but that sentence was hilarious. I was under the impression he was a decent corner. Not sure I have the facts to support that, so I believe you.

Peter can look himself in the mirror every morning because he is under the impression everyone else is weird and he is completely normal. I was going to make a reference to him not knowing Hitler was born in Austria, but I forgot. Really, I just forgot when I was editing. Glad you were smart enough to bring it up.

Rich, great point a/b tackling. If you can't tackle by the time you're in the NFL, you are already behind.

I did research and most of the players who were unrestricted FA did re-sign with their own teams. So I abandoned it to cut the space down on the post, but you are exactly right.

That's why I apologized for Peter's behavior. He gets off on pointing how bizarre other countries are and seems to indicate the way they do things are not reasonable. I didn't have anyone bust in front of me in Germany and Austria, mostly because I was paying attention and realized I need to be on my toes b/c I don't speak anything but "Hello" "Have a good day" and "where is the bathroom." You are very right. Other countries are different from America. Is this really surprising or worthy of mention?

Brett Favre's ego would never allow him to be a backup. Never. He would want to start.

I'm getting the feeling Peter thinks the Jets may sign Asomugha. He only mentioned it about 8 times. I don't see why Revis would re-structure either. Also, didn't the Jets draft a CB last year in the 1st round? Kyle Wilson? Is Asomugha, as talented as he is, worth the investment at cornerback?

Martin, I had completely forgot about the league. I will get on that tomorrow and send out invites to those who participated last year and anyone else who wants to join. I'll send Peter an invite, we'll see how that goes.

I would think a team like the Jets would work for Asomugha, but you probably have seen him play more than I have. I don't get a lot of Raiders games here in NC. You have to use a CB wisely and if he is a guy who is more valuable in press coverage than the Packers may work for him. I personally think they could use a corner. I'm not a Sam Shields fan if he's a starter in 2 years. For some reason, I see him in Jacksonville. I have no basis for that of course.

jacktotherack said...

"Why not hold a clipboard for $4 million for five months? I believe it will not happen. But we shall see."

Who in the hell is going to give Favre $4 million to be a backup QB? That's idiotic.

Bengoodfella said...

Jack, people who love Brett Favre way too much would do that. Other than that, I'm not sure. Merely having him in the locker room would cause a QB controversy, I see no upside unless no one ever asked Favre if he could be a starter still.

Aron said...

It is amazing to me how completely clueless Peter King is about his own hypocrisy. In a way, it makes him worse than Easterbrook. At least Greggggg is probably aware of how pompous and sanctimonious he is. King seems to think he's 'one of us'. Idiot. Great job, especially "CBA Opt-Out Creep". Literally laghed out loud.

Bengoodfella said...

Aron, I just had to add an Easterbrook reference. Peter is clueless about how he comes off. He goes on vacation and then complains about it. Complains! Just stay in America if the rest of the world is so terrible. People act crazy everywhere.

It is irritating he is completely ignorant to how the comes off to us.