Tuesday, March 4, 2014

11 comments MMQB Review: Peter King Talks More Manziel (Hey! Pageviews!) and the N-Word Edition

Peter King announced in last week's MMQB that the Top 10 picks of the NFL Draft are set, he just doesn't know what order they will go in. I'm sure sometime in early May when the draft doesn't go exactly how Peter thought it would go he is going to announce how FREAKING UNPREDICTABLE THE NFL DRAFT IS! EVERYONE'S MIND IS BLOWN! SOMEONE NEEDS TO SUE THE NFL FOR THE CONCUSSION THEY CAUSED FROM THE BLATANT UNPREDICTABILITY OF THE DRAFT PROCESS!

Last week Peter also thought it was a good idea for the officials to start throwing penalty flags for racial slurs being thrown on the field. This seems like a terrible idea to me personally, because I can't imagine how the officials will be able to hear exactly what the players say and feel good about flagging a player for using the n-word. But hey, this will stop the use of racial slurs by athletes forever, right? This week Peter talks more about the potential banning of the n-word (I think he just likes typing "the n-word"), doesn't discuss the fact he criticized Jadeveon Clowney on Twitter this past week then admitted he hasn't watched one game that Clowney has played in and takes on the those people who dare to use too many towels at the gym. Only the brave men like Peter can take on the tough issues in life. Actually, I think Peter desperately wants to make his life like an episode of "Seinfeld" so that's why he loves to comment on what others around him are doing, while giving out nicknames like "Seven Towel Man." If Peter couldn't be Brett Favre in another life, then he would want a life exactly like Jerry Seinfeld's fictional life on television, only with Brett Favre taking the place of Kramer of course.

We seem to have a disagreement about Johnny Manziel, and the salary cap has exploded in a good way, and Brandin Cooks is trying to elbow his way up in the first round, and free agency is only eight days away, and the Eagles have done a bunch of good business.

Wow, that's a run-on sentence even I would like to avoid. That's four "and's" in the sentence when it very easily could have been one "and" and a compound sentence that lists something.

But first, about that n-word …

Boy, Peter does seem to enjoy discussing the n-word doesn't he? I think it's his liberal guilt that makes him want the NFL to ban the n-word and penalize those who use it. I wish the officials would penalize those who use the word "National Football League," rather than just say "NFL" when doing analysis on television. Or maybe just penalize Jon Gruden for loving everyone and everything. I digress...

The NFL Competition Committee has been meeting in Florida since Friday, and one of the items the eight men are debating is whether it should be a penalty if a player on the field uses the n-word. I am hearing it is unlikely a rule will be passed this year penalizing a player for using the n-word for the first time in a game.

Great, because it's a cumbersome idea that is difficult to enforce.

Three outcomes are possible:

1. The Competition Committee will urge that it be a point of emphasis for officials this year. When officials hear it, they would admonish players about it and do nothing else.

Man, I bet the players would fear a stern talking-to from the officials about using harsh language. If there is a way the NFL could require NFL players who use the n-word to wear dunce caps and sit in the corner for five minutes, they should try that too.

2. The committee will urge that offending players be warned if the word is used on the field during games. After a warning, a player with a second use could be penalized for using it, at the discretion of the officiating crew. I say “could be,” because the league could give officiating crews the option of throwing a flag, depending on the circumstances.

I think on the scale of bad ideas involved with the idea of legislating the n-word, this is one of the better ideas, but I still don't like legislating words said on the football field.

3. Nothing will change. Players will be allowed to use the word at will.

Fans don't hear it at the game or on television for the most part, so no one is harmed and the players aren't treated like children who need their mouth washed out with soap for saying a dirty word.

But understand that the eight-man Competition Committee is not a legislative body. It recommends new rules, and owners vote on them. So we won’t know anything about the outcome of the debate till the owners’ meetings in Orlando beginning March 23.

Over the weekend, I communicated with three African-American players about it.

Two things I want to bring up:

1. I like that a rule about whether NFL players can use a racial slur on the football field is going to be voted on by a bunch of old white men. That's perfect.

2. Why did Peter only talk to African-American players? Wouldn't non-African American players have an opinion on this word even if the word wasn't traditionally used to denigrate them? I think it's important to get the opinion of players who aren't African-American too.

Two of them were opposed to the word being banned. A third thought it was a good idea but would be hard to police.

There are a lot of great ideas out there. Yet if you can't enforce the idea then it's not such a great idea that is grounded in reality. 

“It’s an atrocious idea,” said Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman. “It’s almost racist, to me. It’s weird they’re targeting one specific word. Why wouldn’t all curse words be banned then?”

I recognize I don't have the Stanford education that Richard Sherman has, but I fail to see how banning an inherently racist word from being used and banning no other words that aren't inherently racist is racist in itself. I think Richard Sherman may just want to call something racist, because it's not racist to attempt to eliminate racist words from being used. Except in opposite world, which could be where Sherman is vacationing during the offseason.

Sherman emphasized that the n-word ending in “-er” is racist, but the n-word ending in “-a” is not, when used among African-American players.

Oh okay. I wonda about the reason fa that but now I know.

Free agent linebacker D’Qwell Jackson said, “Ultimately if the NFL can get it done, it’s great for our game. But I think refs have a hard enough time officiating the game now. Now they’d be asked to police language?”

Exactly. Why make the officials job harder than it has to be? Not banning the word from being used isn't condoning the use of the word. It's going to be difficult to get rid of the n-word on the football field.

One reliable league source told me the biggest problem he saw is very often during scrums, name-calling and foul language are exchanged by a group of players. What happens if an official thinks he heard the n-word from one player and it actually was another? The referee could call the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty/language foul, and if the offending player is white, it’s going to scar him for his career. What if the call is made on the wrong player?

Then he would have a very good season, people may forget about it and the Eagles would sign him to a large-ish contract when he's a free agent.

The Fritz Pollard Alliance has been loudly advocating the ban of the n-word this off-season. This is where the generation gap between the hierarchy of Pollard—chairman John Wooten, 77, and executive director Harry Carson, 60—and many current players comes into the picture.

Shocking to think there is a difference in opinion about what the n-word means between two generations, one who was called that word derisively and the other who was called that word by his friends as a somewhat affectionate-ish term. Who would have thought it true?

“I find it very disheartening that in our society today we’re having a debate about the n-words being used as a term of endearment,” Carson said Sunday. “If that’s a term of endearment, go up to your grandfather, or an elderly black person, and use it on them. See how they react. For those who use it, I say they have no sense of history.”

This is absolutely true. Regardless, the word is used a lot on football fields and it's nearly impossible to police it. Trying to do so is going to be like herding cats, and take it from someone who lives in his mom's attic with 15 cats, it's really hard to herd cats. 

“For someone who uses the n-word,” said Carson, “it dishonors Bill Willis, and it dishonors the sacrifices he and others have made for others in the future. I find it disheartening players can justify using the word in any form today, in 2014.”

But Peter never really gets into whether Harry Carson thinks it is a good idea to legislate the use of the n-word or not and how he would go about legislating this word.

No matter what the Rich McKay- and Jeff Fisher-led committee recommends, it will face ire from one of two sides: football traditionalists/respected veterans who see it as an issue of dignity, or many modern players who see it as an infringement of free speech.

I hope these middle-aged white men can make a good decision about whether an inherently racist word directed towards non-middle-aged men can be penalized or not. I wish Peter had just come out and asked this question.

Last week, former quarterbacks and current tape students Ron Jaworski and Phil Simms both came out as skeptics of Johnny Manziel. I liked it.

I've never Tweeted at (Tweeted towards?) Peter King in my life that I can recall, but I did when he stated he didn't understand the backlash at Jaws for saying he didn't like Manziel in the five games he watched. Peter misses the fundamental point about the backlash. The problem isn't what Jaws said, he's made these type of statements before that just provide fuel for the ESPN echo chamber. That's how it seemed to me, which is what I told Peter over Twitter. Of course, he responded which followed a lot of other people directing comments at me and missing the point too. I don't care about Jaws' opinion, but it's not his opinion that's the issue, it's that Ron Jaworski has made really bold statements (like Colin Kaepernick could end up being the best QB in the history of the NFL) before and it only provides fuel for ESPN to create their own news cycle. So the criticism of Jaws is that he believed this opinion, but was also creating a news cycle for ESPN based on his "controversial" comments that could be discussed on different shows on ESPN...which of course happened. So it's not about whether I like Jaws opinion or not, but his motivation behind the statement. Was it to get his opinion out there and create stories his employer could cover on their different programs?

If you’re an analyst and don’t voice your real opinion, what good are you?

Sort of like how Peter King stated on Twitter he didn't think Clowney gave a good effort in games and used Lawrence Taylor as an example of a player who was constantly double-teamed, so that's not an excuse he would accept. Then Peter admitted he had not watched one minute of tape on Clowney. Typical Peter.

Manziel was such a wild stallion as a quarterback at Texas A&M,

You know Peter got mildly aroused typing that sentence. Manziel is so Favreian.

What's interesting is that Peter is dead set on discussing Johnny Manziel as much as possible, but there is a chance Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater could be drafted before Manziel, yet nary a word on either player. It's almost like Peter knows Manziel's name drives pageviews. 

But it is folly to say he hasn’t played well at times in the pocket; some of his best plays—though maybe not always with good footwork—came with traffic around him, and Manziel finding the receiver he needed to find. But Whitfield knows you don’t want to neuter all of his instincts and you don’t want him exposed to the number of hits he faced in college either.

Much like how I felt about Robert Griffin, I think staying healthy is going to be Manziel's biggest issue in the NFL. He's not going to be able to scramble around quite as much or be exposed to big hits at the NFL level and expect to stay healthy. He's not a big guy and I'm afraid he's going to have trouble staying healthy more than I'm afraid he can't throw from the pocket.

I find it interesting that Nick Saban didn’t emphasize keeping Manziel inside the tackle box (or if he did, it just didn’t work) the way LSU coach Les Miles did. Check out how Manziel did in his two meetings against LSU and Alabama. Saban, I would argue, is the biggest test for a quarterback in college football, given his track record on the pro and college levels.

I would argue that Peter King doesn't watch enough college football to make an argument on who the biggest test for Manziel is. I would also argue that the LSU defense is slightly closer to an NFL defense as compared to Alabama's defense. Again, it's my opinion, but I consider LSU to have a speedy NFL-type defense that likes to show different fronts and different blitzes to a quarterback. LSU also seems to rotate defensive linemen more than Alabama does, which means Manziel is facing slightly fresher pass rushers against LSU than Alabama. Again, I could be wrong, but I don't know if Peter has the experience in watching college football to be right.

“I understand he’s not for all 32 teams,” said Phil Savage, the color man on Alabama radio broadcasts, executive director of the Senior Bowl and former NFL GM with the Browns.

He's the former GM of the Browns who drafted such notables as Brady Quinn, Kamerion Wimbley, Braylon Edwards, and Brodney Pool, so you know he's good. 60% of the time he gets the pick right every time.

“But he’s so instinctive, such a playmaker and such a smart football player that I think there have to be a few teams that think, We can shape our offense around him and use his skills for what he does best. We can win with him.”

"Then we can watch his body slowly crumble because he's the type of quarterback who is prone to taking big hits while scrambling."

My guess, two-plus months out from the draft: Jacksonville, at number three, or Oakland, at five, make the most sense. If I’m Jags offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch, who is one of the most imaginative young coaches in the game, I’d love to get my hands on Manziel.

We know, Peter. We know you just want to get your hands on Manziel. But how would he respond? Does he like the comparison to Favre or would that cause Manziel to shy away at your touch? He's a wild stallion. There's no way he can be tamed. It's attractive and scary at the same time, but Peter can be imaginative too and there's a bear-skin rug at Peter's secret apartment in the woods of Mississippi that hasn't been used in years.

The salary cap has doubled in this century, and it has virtually quadrupled in its 20-year history.

If people treated Roger Goodell and Paul Tagliabue the way David Stern is treated then this is all that would be focused upon and all of Goodell's missteps would immediately be forgotten.

Collectively, teams have more than $700 million to spend when free agency begins a week from Tuesday. If I were a GM, I’d try to spend internally, the way the Eagles did last Thursday and Friday, signing four key offensive players to new deals, and eliminating the need to go outside the building for important positions like left tackle (Jason Peters, one of the best in the league, got re-signed) when there’s usually a reason why players are on the market in the first place.

Of course my favorite team did spend internally after the lockout ended and that's part of the reason the team is in the salary cap hell that it currently is in. So it's good to spend on current players, but make sure you are spending on the right currently players and maybe not giving $80 million to two running backs.

As I wrote about last week, NFL teams are going to have to spend the money on somebody, inside or outside the organization.

Sounds like somebody is getting overpaid.

Point is, teams now will be forced to spend to the minimums required by the 2011 collective bargaining agreement. That’s a good thing. And with the cap projected to increase by at least $10 million more in 2015, this should be a good time for players who thought they were being held back by a relatively flat cap to make up for lost time.

Who could strike it rich? Three projections:

These are "projections." Not to be confused with "guesses" because if these were "guesses" then that would mean Peter doesn't know for sure who will strike it rich. These are "projections" based on tons of data from past years that Peter didn't crunch in order to determine which players will strike it rich, and are based solely on Peter's opinion...which of course isn't a "guess."

1. Cleveland center Alex Mack (either with the Browns or elsewhere), a sturdy 28-year-old line leader and solid run blocker, should average $8 million a year, minimum.

Who really knows what's going on in Alex Mack's head though and how much he wants on the free agent market. He's so secretive. It seems there is a secret world of Alex Mack or something.

2. Miami defensive tackle Paul Soliai, 30 years old but relatively lightly used in his career, is the best run-stuffer on the market and should command at least $6 million a year.

Notice that Mack will "average" $8 million per year, while Soliai will "command" $6 million per year. Peter's projections also show how strongly each free agent will ask for a certain contractual amount per year. Ted Ginn is going to be "politely asking" for a multi-year deal, while "sternly suggesting" he gets $5 million guaranteed.

3. Tennessee cornerback Alterraun Verner, who just turned 25 and had his best season with the Titans. Cover corners and rushers will be the most lucrative positions on the market, and Tennessee, going against Andrew Luck and new quarterbacks due in Jacksonville and Houston, needs to do everything it can to keep Verner.

Because Peter's projections tell us that the Titans need to load up on corners to fact the yet-to-be-determined quarterback the Jaguars and Texans are going to be drafting. Apparently Peter has a projection that tells him for sure the Titans and Jaguars are going to be drafting quarterbacks that are going to succeed in the NFL and require teams in the AFC South to load up on cornerbacks. Oh that's right, I forgot the Top 10 of the NFL Draft is already set. 

I watched the Oregon State offensive snaps of three of his 2013 games—against Cal, Stanford and USC.

That's three more games than Peter watched Clowney play, but he KNOWS Clowney takes plays off.

It was the TV copy, and the wide receivers were out of the picture quite often, so I couldn’t get a good picture of him blocking downfield (though he did block aggressively in a scrum against Stanford for a fellow receiver).

Apparently Peter can't afford anything but bootlegged Oregon State tapes from overseas. I would imagine the tape Peter watched had subtitles and "Do Not Copy" written across the screen, along with Russian commercials.

And I can’t say I am confident about his route-running either, for a similar reason. 

Well great, I'm glad you watched the tapes then and can feel confident enough to waste our time talking about what you don't know regarding Brandin Cooks.

But I got a good feel for his physicality competing for balls and his hands and his speed around the edge. All very good. 

This is analysis people! Peter is about to use projections, so stand back!

I didn’t see the blow-the-top-off-the-defense speed I thought I’d see after his 4.33 40-time at the combine, but he clearly is plenty fast. Oregon State uses him on the Jet sweeps the way Seattle used Percy Harvin when healthy in 2013; he didn’t break many, but you don’t sneer at 6.8 yards per play on the sweeps.

Harvin was healthy for the Super Bowl and like one quarter of a regular season and playoff game. This is the best comparison Peter could come up with?

Cooks reminded me of the West Virginia all-purpose weapon, Tavon Austin, 

The brilliant future Hall of Fame receiver that the Rams stupendously selected in the first round of this past year's NFL Draft, while sneering at the idiot teams who weren't as smart as the Rams to recognize the talent Austin has. Speaking of those Rams, Peter's projections have their fortunes pointed upwards very soon.

The most impressive play I saw Cooks make came against Stanford. From the Cardinal 8-yard line, quarterback Sean Mannion looked for Cooks running a short post on the right side. Cooks caught it around the 4 and hurtled toward the end zone, with three Stanford defenders in the way. Cooks dove under safety Ed Reynolds, his main foe near the goal line, while defensive tackle David Parry and linebacker A.J. Tarpley tried to squeeze him from getting in for the score. Cooks barely made it. The physicality of the play was impressive; Cooks knew he’d get clobbered, but he went for it nonetheless—and he won.

And he’s a plucker of the ball; his hands dart out, grab the ball softly and bring it in.

And we all know that Peter loves it when an athlete plucks balls softly. If an athlete's hands can pluck balls quickly and softly, Peter's projections show that he's going to like that athlete.

This is a terrific receiver class—Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans and Marqise Lee are the more highly regarded and bigger receivers, and fast-riser Odell Beckham is another high-pick contender. The quantity and quality will likely push Cooks down to the second half of the first round; there’s a slight chance he’d fall to the second round, but with wideout-needy teams late in the first round (New England, Baltimore, Cleveland, Carolina, San Francisco), it’s highly unlikely he’ll make it out. Seeing as they have a huge need for a playmaker, the Jets, at 18, would be a great landing spot for Cooks.

It seems that Peter has all his bases covered here. He states Cooks will likely go in the second round, though he may go to one of the wideout-needy teams late in the first round, but Peter thinks Cooks would make perfect sense for the Jets at 18. So basically, anything could happen.

“Russell Wilson is more explosive. He’s naturally bigger and stronger than Johnny Manziel. They’re not even close in arm strength.”
—Phil Simms, to Adam Schein of SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Radio.

Not even close? Simms is a scientist of the position, and he has watched 1,000 hours of tape for every one I have watched. But did he see the Manziel strike, while off-balance, that traveled 44 yards in the air to Mike Evans against Alabama? Or the one that went 53 yards in the air downfield, also a strike, against Arkansas?
I suppose Wilson would win a throwing contest against Manziel. But it would be close.

Remember earlier in this column when Peter wrote:

Last week, former quarterbacks and current tape students Ron Jaworski and Phil Simms both came out as skeptics of Johnny Manziel. I liked it.

If you’re an analyst and don’t voice your real opinion, what good are you?

Apparently Peter doesn't like it when an analyst voices his real opinion if Peter doesn't agree with that opinion. Basically, Peter likes Ron Jaworski and doesn't want his friends to be criticized, even though Peter doesn't really understand why there was criticism of Jaworski.

Comparing the Eagles’ Dream Team (Vince Young’s words, not mine) acquisitions of 2011 to the signings of their own last week:

But...but...those are your words because you just typed "Dream Team" in this column and could have referred to the 2011 Eagles by any other term you chose to without your audience losing the meaning of what you wanted to discuss (which was a comparison of the money spent on the 2011 and 2014 free agent class by the Eagles).

So, the Eagles, with an estimated $21 million in cap room, should be able to address their needs and get their own players re-signed in the early days of free agency. If I were GM Howie Roseman, I’d be watching tape of Titans corner Alterraun Verner.

(Peter checks his non-existent projections sheet) YES! Peter does project that Howie Roseman will be watching tape of Alterraun Verner, who will be demanding $9 million per season, while asking for a five year deal, but reluctantly submitting to a four year deal.

Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week
Not a travel note, really, but a slice-of-non-green-life note from New York City:

Or as I should start calling it, the "I Want My Life to be Like 'Seinfeld' Travel Note of the Week."

I observed The Seven-Towel Man on Saturday at my gym in Manhattan, while on parallel schedules with the man.

See? He gives cutesy nicknames to people like characters on "Seinfeld" used to do.

Three towels for the steam room—one to wrap around his waist, one as a cape around his shoulder, one to hold in his hands to wipe his brow. After a short steam, he deposited the three towels in the hamper.

Here's the thing...this guy probably knows what Peter King looks like. So now this guy knows that Peter King is somewhat mocking him in his public column about the NFL. If Peter gets punched in the face or accosted by this guy for writing this note, then I'm completely on the side of Seven-Towel Man. If you don't want to get punched in the face, don't stare at a person in public and then comment to hundreds of thousands of readers what his steam room routine is.

He took two for the shower—one to dry himself and one as a mat for the floor when he left the shower. He dropped those in the hamper. The Seven-Towel-Man then took two for post-showering, and I did not see what he did with those.

Let's not overlook the fact Peter King is staring at a man who is in the steam room, staring at a man as he enters the shower and then staring at this same man as he exits the shower. Perhaps, and this is just a suggestion, Peter should mind his own fucking business and stop staring at people when they are in various states of undress? What's more weird, using seven towels or staring at someone as they steam off, shower and then get out of the shower?

One man, 25 minutes, seven towels. Life is plush.

Says the man who belongs to a health club that has a steam room.

“Woman just dropped her scarf in hotel lobby. ‘Excuse me. You dropped this,’ says man, leaning down to give her scarf. The man? Allen Iverson”
—@MrMichaelLee, Michael Lee, Wizards beat man for the Washington Post, on Saturday in Philadelphia, where Allen Iverson had his number retired by the Sixers that evening.

Oh my God, this was Allen Iverson? Isn't he a huge thug who only cares about smacking bitches and getting tattoos? That's the narrative isn't it? And here I thought Iverson would rather shank this woman as opposed to politely giving her the scarf back.

Ten Things I Think I Think

2. I think there’s no way I’m giving up two first-round picks and $12 million a year for a tight end, particularly one I’m not sure is going to be great consistently against physical defenses. That’s not a knock on Jimmy Graham.

No, this is literally a direct knock against Jimmy Graham. He would cost two first round picks and $10 million plus per year to any team that wants to trade for him and then try to sign him. Peter is talking about Jimmy Graham here, so this is a knock against Jimmy Graham directly since Peter is specifically referring to Graham not being consistently great against physical defenses. Considering Eric Decker was held to one catch in the Super Bowl against a physical defense, I wonder what Peter thinks about his value as a free agent?

But two ones and 9% of your cap? Nope. Really good player. Not worth that.

But again, this is not a knock against Jimmy Graham. He's just not worth $12 million per year and two first round picks.

4. I think a De Smith-Sean Gilbert battle would be interesting, if only for this issue: Smith is adamantly opposed to an 18-game schedule, and Gilbert’s on record saying he’d be willing to give the owners 18 games in the regular season in exchange for a three-year path to free agency.

And I definitely think the players should elect a person who sat out a year because God told him to do so. That person clearly seems sane, plus he seems willing to trade the player's health for a faster path to money. I'm sure that sounds good to some players, but otherwise, it seems his idea is to trade health for money. Go figure, Sean Gilbert is chasing money even after his retirement.

5. I think I cannot see a majority of players agreeing with Gilbert. I just can’t.

What if God says the players should agree with Gilbert? What then, Peter?

7. I think we all want to know: Jerry Jones, what were you doing at the Oscars last night?

I mean, you really have to ask Peter? I would ask why Jerry Jones chose not to attend the Oscars. It seems like something he would do.

9. I think the biggest sign that Greg Schiano will someday work with Bill Belichick in New England, and the most interesting personnel result from the last week, is this: New England could start three Rutgers Scarlet Knights in the secondary this fall: free safety Devin McCourty (round one, 2010), strong safety Duron Harmon (round three, 2013) and cornerback Logan Ryan (round three, 2013).

Peter has a small obsession with Greg Schiano. He thought Schiano was a wonderful head coach for the Bucs and likes that Schiano is connected to Belichick. Otherwise, no one outside of Patriots fans give a shit if a fired NFL coach is going to be hired at another job. Where's the Jim Schwartz update at? What about the Leslie Frazier update on what's he doing now? That's right, those aren't coaches that Peter King personally likes.

10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:

a. Lupita Nyong’o. Awesome.

She's definitely no Phillip Seymour Hoffman or a gem like Meryl Streep, but she'll do for Peter. She's good enough, at least until she dies, at which point Peter will proclaim her the best actress of her generation out of the blue.

d. Great job, U2.

They suck, Peter. Please just admit this. They were good 20 years ago and have coasted on their name and similar-sounding singles since then.

g. Who can forget this line from the Ramis classic, from the long-lost and forgotten insurance man, Ned Ryerson: “Ned! Ryerson! Needle-Nose Ned! Ned the Head! Ned Ryerson! Come on buddy! Case Western High! I did the whistling belly-button trick at the high school talent show! Bing! Ned Ryerson. Got the shingles real bad senior year, almost didn’t graduate! Bing, again! Ned Ryerson, I dated your sister Mary Pat a couple times till you told me not to anymore. Well?” Just watch it.
h. The look Bill Murray gives Ned … one of the greatest in Murray history.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman would have rocked this look too. The depth he would have shown. He was like a wild stallion as an actor. The Manziel-before-Manziel of Hollywood actors.

i. Wow. What a putt by Paula Creamer.

Which specific punt was this again? I know it's easy to see what Peter is talking about when he talks in such generalities but it would be easier if he just told us exactly which putt he was referring to.

k. Beernerdness: Thanks to my friends at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and especially Joe Horrigan, for taking us out to a place that served Great Lakes Brewing’s Burning River Pale Ale. Fresh and with a good bite, this ale reminded me of the San Diego pale ale, Ballast Point. Both have a touch of pine.

Gregg Easterbrook would wonder how Peter knows what pine tastes like. Or would Gregg not make fun of a fellow pretentious, lofty upper-class buddy?

The Adieu Haiku
Commercials. Which has
more—Oscars or Super Bowl?
Brick through the TV.

Then don't watch the Oscars. If you watch the Oscars then you deserve to be annoyed by the commercials.


HH said...

“It’s an atrocious idea,” said Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman. “It’s almost racist, to me. It’s weird they’re targeting one specific word. Why wouldn’t all curse words be banned then?”

I recognize I don't have the Stanford education that Richard Sherman has, but I fail to see how banning an inherently racist word from being used and banning no other words that aren't inherently racist is racist in itself.

I think what Sherman is getting at, and I wrote about this on my blog, too, is that if there's a penalty for using the N-word, black players will be the most penalized. As players have said, the word is very commonly used among black players, and they're the ones having to break the habit. Thus, most of the burden will fall on black players to adjust to the new rule. It's a reasonable point, but this proposed rule is stupid on other grounds.

Zidane Valor said...

I don't know. It seemed like the big story to the media was the 15-yard penalty for saying the n-word, but to me the big story was that a second offense would lead to an ejection. Really? Players are going to be ejected for it? I'm stunned how little play that part of the rule got.

John Dudley said...

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Bengoodfella said...

HH, oh.......that makes sense. I don't have the Stanford education and that's probably why. That's a really good point by Sherman. Gosh, he's pretty intuitive and smart. Not that I didn't think he was prior, but I thought this through and missed this point entirely.

It's a reasonable point. I wish he had explained WHY it was racist, because it doesn't seem like a rule that tries to rid the NFL of a racial slur is racist. Either way, the rule is dumb. Stupid and should not be enforced.

Zidane, that's a bit much. I recognize it's a terrible word, but to kick a player out of the game for using the word twice? What if a player uses it twice in a sentence? Is that like a double technical and he's out of the game?

I hope this rule doesn't pass.

John, thanks. Your timing is great. I'm going to New Delhi tomorrow specifically for skin treatment.

Ericb said...

Maybe the NFL should ban the "r-word", Redskin.

Slag-King said...

I wish he had explained WHY it was racist.

He probably did, but Peter probably edited out the explanation, afraid that Sherman's Stanford education will be over people's heads.

However, I have to admit that Sherman's statement is refreshingly pithy (if it was indeed that length). I hate the longwindedness of Peter's column about this subject.

Bengoodfella said...

Slag, Peter probably figured we are all idiots (which I didn't do anything to not support this line of thought by completely missing what Sherman was talking about) so he edited that part out. I think Peter is struggling to find something to talk about this time of year, so he talks about topics at length that aren't that interesting. Because, God forbid, the column be shorter.

Eric, nope that word is fine to use. No big deal.

The Casey said...

What's the over/under on Johnny Football's first Wrangler commercial? 5 years?

2. Miami defensive tackle Paul Soliai, 30 years old but relatively lightly used in his career, is the best run-stuffer on the market and should command at least $6 million a year.

Isn't "lightly used" the same thing as "couldn't win a starting job/stay on the field"? Every now and then you get someone who's stuck behind a HOFer (Michael Turner/LaDanian Tomlinson), but not most of the time.

Bengoodfella said...

Casey, I'm taking the under and I have no doubt that Brett Favre will be in the commercial too.

If I'm not wrong Soliai is lightly used mostly because he's a run stuffer and tends to come off the field on passing downs. I'm not sure the value of a guy like that on the FA market, but I think he's a best fit for a 3-4. I think "lightly used" means "can't play on passing downs," but I could be very wrong.

Murray said...

They suck, Peter. Please just admit this. They were good 20 years ago and have coasted on their name and similar-sounding singles since then.


Bengoodfella said...

Murray, U2 has been coasting on their name for a while now. What's sad is they have tried to change their sound, but their fans absolutely won't have it. So rather than play the music they want to play and put out albums that may not sound like U2, the band has decided to just stay within the confines of "the U2 sound" and count the cash.

Great bands and artists have different "periods" of their career, but U2 doesn't have too many "periods." They have tried to branch out a few times into electronica, disco-ish, and even some weird pop, but each time come back to "the U2 sound" when record sales aren't what they want.

U2 wants to sell records, which is fine, but they have hit the part of their career where they just put out albums that sound like them over a decade ago. Most bands choose to challenge themselves and then have the balls to play this music they want to play, but U2 won't do that.

In fact, I LOL'd the other day at a news story I saw on Billboard. U2 has been trying to make a new album (which apparently is the hardest thing ever to do) and they have scrapped some of the music because "it didn't capture the U2 magic," which is a funny phrase considering the last album to do that was Achtung Baby. Regardless, they have now called in Ryan Tedder to help them write songs. Tedder of course fronts his own band that rips off the U2 sound. So basically, U2 has called in a professional songwriter to write songs for them that sound like U2.

Could the band be any closer to less relevant and an actual band? Say what you want about the Rolling Stones, but there is no indication even at their very, very advanced age they call someone else in to write songs that sound like a Rolling Stones song. I mean, U2 is so concerned with having the right U2 sound they are basically hiring someone to write like they can't write anymore. What a pathetic display. Give it up, boys.