Many things to do today, the pivotal offseason of the Atlanta Falcons, the state of the 2015 NFL draft, why Michael Sam and new BFF Oprah did the right thing, Gregg Williams being in the prefect place at the right time,
It's a story of redemption for Gregg Williams! That's a great way to spin. Snark aside, I'm glad Peter has finally acknowledged the infallible Rams have hired the architect of the bounty scandal as their defensive coordinator. It only took several months for Peter to acknowledge this happened.
So we’ve started this 10-week series at The MMQB. It’s about the history of pro football, with an eye on the future in every story we do. We dispatched young Emily Kaplan down to NFL Films in south Jersey to see a living, breathing NFL museum, the office of the late NFL Films impresario Steve Sabol, whose workplace was left precisely how he last worked in it, right down to his last lunch order. Emily Kaplan wrote vividly of the place, and photographer Jeff Zelevansky took a breathtaking GigaPan photo of the office—you can put your cursor on anything in the office, focus on it and POOF! There it is, full and vivid, on your screen.
Technology, everyone! I see Peter King has gone to the Bill Simmons School of Synergy where he uses his popular weekly column to publicize the future and past columns that will be/have appeared on THE MMQB (again, not to be confused with the MMQB Peter writes every week).
Look at the notes Sabol took after a long session watching Bill Parcells coach. Focus on it. Put your cursor on the binder with the Parcells notes, and you’ll see, down near the bottom of the page, what Sabol found after his Parcells experience.
“He’s more than old school. He’s a one-room schoolhouse with no lunch and no recess.”
Did Parcells have any quotes about how he is able to drum up interest in himself for NFL jobs by pretending to have interest in an NFL coaching job, lying that he has interest, backing out at the last minute and then taking another NFL head coaching job all while denying he is taking the job? Were there any notes on how he won only three playoff games his last 11 years of coaching? Probably not.
When coach Mike Smith and GM Thomas Dimitroff looked at their team in the last couple of years, there were things they didn’t like much. But when you coach and manage a team for five years, and you win 56 games and lose just 24, and you make the playoffs four out of five years, you tend to say, “We’re okay.”
So their sense of complacency was perfectly understandable and absolutely fine. They had made a couple of Super Bowls over the past five years, so there was really nothing to improve upon. It's not like there were any younger, competitive teams in the NFC who had proven they could beat the Falcons at home in the playoffs, so an extra week of vacation and no major roster changes are no problem at all.
Said Smith: “Human nature, when you’re getting positive results, is not to stress the negative. But when you get humbled, which happened last year, you’ve got to be realistic about your team.”
I guess it depends on your definition of "positive results" (though this is a typical Atlanta area team attitude like the Braves sometimes have had isn't it? "We made the playoffs, everything is good, no need to improve in the offseason."), doesn't it? Me personally, if I had lost a home NFC Championship Game I probably would be ready to fix any small hole in the roster with a sense of urgency and go back at it again the next year with a better team. Perhaps the Falcons thought they had done that.
As the house-collapsing 4–12 season of 2013 proved, the Falcons were most definitely not okay. The pass-rush stunk. The offensive line stunk. The secondary leaked. And every time they got into the playoffs—Smith’s playoff record: 1–4—a team with a strong pass-rush and good secondary frustrated Matt Ryan and sent the Falcons home early.
So maybe if the Falcons had a bad pass-rush and a bad secondary they could win a few playoff games and make it to the Super Bowl!
Now came the next piece of drama in the Atlanta draft room. New assistant GM Scott Pioli was a voice of calm in the room;
Will some NFL team just hire Scott Pioli as their General Manager so Peter King can stop reciting the virtues of his good friend? Scott Pioli was a voice of calm in the Kansas City draft room too. Unfortunately being calm doesn't immediately translate to being a good GM. But hey, Pioli knows Bill Belichick, so he has to be a genius!
Atlanta sat at 37, and wanted a pass-rusher—either a defensive end or an outside linebacker. The Falcons really wanted Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier, who went to Pittsburgh at number 15. That was too high for Atlanta. Then the object of their affection was defensive end Dee Ford, and he would have cost a third-round pick for Atlanta to move into the mid-20s. But Kansas City grabbed Ford at 23, and there went the two rushers Dimitroff liked.
No snark here, but if I were Atlanta and I was willing to move up to get Jake Matthews then I would also be willing to give up a third round pick to move up and get Dee Ford. It's not like their Julio Jones deal with Cleveland hasn't gone really well for them so far. Go confidently in the direction of your dreams, get that pass rusher you want!
The night before the draft, it was clear Dimitroff wanted one more impact guy out of this draft that he just wasn’t able to get. “This league is about now, and it’s about impact players,” he said. “What did Marv Levy say? ‘Depth is great until you’ve got to use it?’ ”
Perhaps I'm stupid, but this doesn't make sense to me. Depth is great and if you have to use it then that makes it doubly great, right? It's better than not having depth and having to use the depth you don't have isn't it? I get what Marv Levy is trying to say, but it really doesn't make sense because the alternative is to have no depth and have to use it. So depth is great, but it sucks if you have to use it.
Getting an impact guy in the draft is important, but the NFL is also about having depth on the roster. Just ask the Seahawks who didn't have a problem after losing Brandon Browner to suspension and won the Super Bowl despite not having the best two receivers on their roster healthy for most of the season.
Soon after the season, Dimitroff and Smith had a summit meeting with owner Arthur Blank. “We have been the hardest on ourselves, and Mr. Blank was hard on us too,” said Dimitroff. “But I welcome that. We deserved it. I’ll be damned if I ever say adequate is okay.”
Except for last year when Dimitroff and Smith decided that making the NFC Championship was adequate and they admittedly got complacent and said they were okay.
“This is not in any way a quest to find excuses for why we went 4–12,” Dimitroff said. “It is just us being mindful to try to do everything we can to keep our players healthy and at a top performance level. And give credit to Smitty—he’s been on board with everything to try to be sure our players are playing at their peak.”
You wouldn't think a head coach would want his players playing at their peak and in great shape.
Mike Tice and Bryan Cox have been imported as assistants on the offense and defense, respectively, in part to instill a toughness that has been missing.
Hopefully Mike Tice won't try to install a "Julio Rule" or else Gregg Easterbrook will flip his shit and talk about what a diva player Jones is.
But if Matt Ryan gets whacked around like last year, and if Smith’s defense can’t pressure the quarterback, it’ll be a battle again to stay out of the NFC South basement. And Blank won’t be so patient then.
And then Scott Pioli can take over the Falcons team and lead them to the promised land! Peter and Pioli can drink the blood of Thomas Dimitroff and revel in the victory of calmness and genius over complacency and creating depth.
Gut feeling about the 2015 NFL draft: It will be in a city other than New York, and it will be a week earlier, starting on April 30 and running until May 2.
Gut feeling about NFL fans. They don't especially care where the draft will be held unless it's in their home city.
Why? It’s complicated.
Well Peter, I hope your reader's mini-sized brains can handle the complicatedness of the NFL Draft starting earlier and being in a different city. Just remember that very few of your readers are as smart as you are and avoid using big words.
Last year, Radio City delayed its decision about what dates were available in the spring of 2014, causing the NFL to put off planning for the 2014 draft. Then Radio City told the league the venue was going to be occupied in mid to late April by an Easter Spectacular show, something akin to the Radio City holiday show with the Rockettes. Okay, NFL officials said, we’ll push the draft back to the second weekend of May. Mother’s Day weekend wasn’t ideal, but what choice did the NFL have? Then, earlier this year, Radio City canceled the Easter show. The NFL seethed.
See, this irritates me. It makes perfect sense now why the draft was pushed back until May. Why didn't Peter King (if he even knew prior to the draft), the NFL or someone else just say, "Hey, Radio City was booked and we couldn't get a date until May." It makes sense and rather than have NFL fans and writers make comments about the NFL pushing the draft back until July, just state a completely understandable reason why the draft was pushed back until May 8-10. I have to admit though, I like that Radio City pissed off the NFL. The NFL not getting it's way does not displease me and I think it's good if the NFL is reminded from time to time they only control football in the United States, not everything related to sports in the United States.
now Radio City was going to be dark on the normal draft weekend. But the NFL couldn’t move the draft at that point, so the May 8-10 weekend went on as planned.
The poor little NFL didn't get it's way. I bet Roger Goodell stomped his feet, said he hates everyone, ran up to his room and then refused to come out for dinner.
Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel spoke to Roger Goodell twice about having the draft somewhere there—gigantic McCormick Place near Soldier Field, for instance
That's a great idea, though I'm not sure the NFL would enjoy the draft prospects having a 15% chance of being murdered while attending the draft. I guess it would be interesting to see something like a real like "Hunger Games," but people dying is not cool.
When? NFL officials hear the beefs of teams that want the draft in April. NFL officials also see the 30-percent-plus increase in TV ratings with the draft moved two weeks later. I maintain it wouldn’t matter—with the Manziel mystery, the where-will-Michael-Sam go, the fact that four of the top five picks in the draft were totally unknown as the first round approached. But the NFL does not ignore the ratings.
No way! The NFL likes ratings? I could never tell from the Monday Night Football and Sunday Night Football matchups.
My guess: Chicago, with the first round April 30, 2015.
The benefit of this is so many idiotic Jets fans won't be in attendance to boo or stick their ugly-ass face in the camera whenever the Jets choose a player. The problem is I'm scared of Chicago right now.
In the end, Michael Sam did the right thing. He told coach Jeff Fisher and GM Les Snead that he was going to make his situation right, after the Rams were blindsided by the news of the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) planning a “docuseries” on his rookie year as the first openly gay NFL player.
Because the only documentary that should be allowed about the NFL is the one the NFL forces on an NFL team every summer called "Hard Knocks."
The meeting Friday was only positive, I’m told, because OWN was clear that the only way it would do the series is if Sam wanted it and the Rams wanted it. And it’s just as clear that, for both sides, the series would be best done beginning next off-season, assuming Sam makes the team and plays some this year.
I'm pretty sure OWN would need the consent of Michael Sam to do a documentary about him, so I think the fact OWN was going to do a series about Sam at all is a sign that he wanted it done. Unless OWN planned on filming Sam and hoping that he didn't notice what they were doing.
In some ways, it’s a shame we won’t see (at least now) the trials of Sam in this rookie year, the personal side of trying to be the first openly gay player fighting for a spot on the team. It would be compelling to see Sam at home with his boyfriend, and certainly a help to the LGBT community, dealing with what surely will be a stressful time in his life. But for Sam, it’s just better that it be postponed.
Why? Because Sam is a football player, a rookie trying to find his way onto a football team as an underdog low-round draft pick. Could it help him make the team, or help him make his mark? I don’t see how. But I do see how teammates could either resent him or be angry with him as a low man on the team totem pole.
This is probably good advice from Peter. Sam doesn't need more to worry about right now as a 7th round pick trying to adjust to the speed of the NFL. I personally didn't have an issue with his documentary or reality television show or whatever he wanted to call it. I thought if he wanted to be seen as a football player-only then this was a weird way to go about reinforcing this notion.
There is going to be enough of a sideshow—big media names and TMZ showing up at Rams Park, clamoring to get a Sam story or interview—without Sam voluntarily adding to it. At the scouting combine, Sam semi-pleaded with the media to see him as a football player and not as a gay football player. It would have been hypocritical for him, then, to seek that attention by having OWN cameras in his face off the field as he battled to succeed in his first year.
Yet Sam's hypocrisy would not have been quite as annoying as the NFL forcing an NFL team to participate in "Hard Knocks" when that team does not want to participate.
I’ve thought a lot about this story in the past week, as I’m sure everyone who follows football has. And the more I think about it, the more I think Sam landed in a perfect spot. Absolutely perfect. Three reasons:
Here in list form is why the Rams are so great, you guys. Let Peter tell you about why the Rams are the perfect spot for Michael Sam, no check that, the perfect spot for any NFL player to land. This list sponsored by Marvin Demoff.
The Rams embrace the history of it. I can tell you with certainty that there was some regret in the Rams hierarchy that Sam’s rookie story won’t be told by OWN. Not enough to override the fact that the team really didn’t want it to be done. But the Rams are sure they’ll be a welcoming team and St. Louis a welcoming community for Sam. They’re fired up about the historical significance and the chance to show that a football team can be a change agent.
The Rams are really open-minded you guys. They are so open-minded about Michael Sam being gay, yet also really focused on him succeeding as a human being and a football player.
There are not two better coaches in the league, in tandem, for this task than Jeff Fisher and Gregg Williams. Williams especially.
This is true. Michael Sam knows that if he makes the Rams team he won't have to play much football after every early January, so he will have plenty of time to pursue his other interests. If he had landed on a team like the Patriots, Broncos, 49ers or even the Colts there was the risk that their NFL season could push the offseason back three weeks, maybe even four weeks, depending on how far the team advanced in the playoffs. Since Jeff "8-8" Fisher's teams have made the playoffs six times in his 18 full seasons (hey, that's how many winning seasons Fisher has as an NFL head coach too!) as an NFL head coach and he hasn't actually won a playoff game since 2003 then the future looks pretty bright for Sam to pursue his other interests in the offseason. What really seals the deal is Sam can make a few extra dollars during the season participating in Gregg Williams' bounty program that he will implement with the Rams. It motivates the defensive players and gives them some extra pocket change. So there's only a 33% chance playing under Fisher will result in an extended season, which is good news for the OWN documentary.
Gregg Williams has the kind of ego to believe he can take a player with limited athleticism but good college production at a high level and put him in position to make NFL plays. I can’t wait to see what he has planned, frankly. As for Fisher, he’s a staunch league guy. He knows this is good for football and great for the NFL. He will do everything to give Sam the best chance to make it.
If you put your head close to the keyboard, you can actually hear Peter King's conscience screaming out for a break from pimping out Marvin Demoff's clients. Alas, his conscience loses (much like Fisher's teams during the 12 seasons they have not made the playoffs) and Peter talks up the Rams coaching staff yet again this year. Remember last year when he painted Gregg Williams' son as an up-and-coming defensive assistant? This year Blake Williams (I think that's his name) has been relieved of his duties on the Rams coaching staff.
Not to mention, the Rams kept nine defensive linemen last year and they have only three must-keeps (Chris Long, Robert Quinn, William Hayes) at defensive end. Yes, Sam is in the right place,
Surely no doubt he's in the right spot. Maybe he can help lead the Rams to a 12-4 season, which will lead to a Jeff Fisher contract extension, followed by two straight seasons of the team having a 8-8 record. That would be great if that could happen.
Mike Tannenbaum was the general manager of the Jets for seven years before getting fired by owner Woody Johnson 16 months ago. In his former life, he traded for Brett Favre, hired Rex Ryan, drafted Darrelle Revis, starred in Hard Knocks, traded for Tim Tebow, was part of a team that won four road playoff games, watched in horror at The Buttfumble … in other words, did quite a few things to keep the Jets relevant, mostly successful and back-page-worthy.
He just did something else: As a rising star in the agent business, he represented Steve Kerr in negotiations to make him the new Golden State Warriors coach.
Clearly, Tannenbaum would like another shot at being an NFL GM, but he understands that despite his team’s 61 wins and three playoff appearances in seven years, often a general manager in the NFL gets only one shot. Look at the league now. Bruce Allen (Tampa Bay, Washington) is the only current general manager in his second life as a GM.
If only Tannenbaum was the son of an NFL legend and had the last name as that NFL legend, then maybe he could get another shot as an NFL GM. I mean it worked for Bruce Allen and even got Jay Gruden head coaching job with the Redskins. Unfortunately Mike Tannenbaum's name isn't Mike Parcells or Mike Schottenheimer.
One other non-football note. Wondering why Kerr chose Golden State?
No, I think it's pretty obvious why Kerr chose Golden State. The Knicks are a disaster and Kerr doesn't want to work for James Dolan. It seems like an easy decision to me.
NFL owners gather in Atlanta Tuesday for the annual one-day spring meeting, and they’re slated to pick a host city for Super Bowl 52 (I hate Roman numerals, but for you Augustans, it’s Super Bowl LII) on Feb. 4, 2018. The candidate cities are Indianapolis, Minneapolis and New Orleans. Here’s my tote board of favorites:
New Orleans: 2-1
2018 is the tricentennial for the city, and no one hates a New Orleans game.
As long as they pay the power bill this time it sounds like a good idea. Plus, hearing about how great New Orleans is NEVER gets old.
Northern dome teams always get at least one Super Bowl per new stadium.
And I guess the Vikings are only planning on staying in the stadium for around 10 years, so that's why they should get a Super Bowl just a few years after opening their new stadium?
I personally want another outside Super Bowl up north so I can hear/read sportswriters whining about potential snow and weather that could affect the game. Hearing the cries of a potential crisis, as if the idea of football being played in the snow or (gasp!) rain was too frightening to even imagine, pleased me greatly.
Indy did a superb job on the 2012 game. The city is so easy to negotiate.
Since the city of Indianapolis is easy to navigate this means Peter won't have some ignorant immigrant who barely speaks English guiding him around town in a taxi. Peter will know where's going, so he can punch this taxi driver in the face and negotiate his own way to the nearest Starbucks. Peter won't be buying a latte at this Starbucks run like he normally does though. That story is later in this MMQB, so I don't want to ruin it now.
No question the league is inclined to return to central Indiana at some point in the future, but my guess is the owners will figure there’s not the urgency that New Orleans has in 2018. Wild card here will be the presence of owner Jim Irsay, who has been off battling his addiction issues and plans to speak as part of the Indianapolis bid. Will that help, hurt or be no factor?
I'm sorry, I thought Irsay's "addiction issues" have all been covered up and forgotten about. Are we still okay to talk about Irsay getting arrested for DUI and how the NFL hasn't done a damn thing in regard to punishing him? I wasn't sure. I also like how Irsay has "addiction issues" while Josh Gordon doesn't get the benefit of such doubt from Peter. Much like you are "eccentric" if you are crazy and wealthy (as compared to just being called crazy), an arrest for DUI/DWI while being a wealthy owners means you have "addiction issues," while any NFL player who gets arrested for DUI/DWI is a moron who needs to learn to call a cab.
“This offseason has been very frustrating for me … [I wonder] Is this still the place for me?”
—Houston wide receiver Andre Johnson, who obviously thought the Texans would go get a quarterback in free agency or the draft (one better than Ryan Fitzpatrick and Tom Savage).
Houston coach Bill O’Brien is in a tough spot. He’s got a wideout who’s going to be 33 this season, who, despite the inconsistency at quarterback for the team, has caught 221 passes over the last two years and missed zero games due to injury. If Johnson’s not going to be with the program, is it worth trying to get a 2015 or 2016 first-round pick for him—which some contender (New England? San Francisco?) might be willing to do?
If Andre Johnson keeps running his mouth about how he doesn't want to be on the Texans team anymore he could end up helping the Texans lose any leverage they may have when trying to get a first round pick in return for Johnson. At this point, I'm not sure the 49ers even have room on the roster at the wide receiver spot to trade for another wide receiver. Who would be the fourth receiver on this 49ers team with a run-based offense? Stevie Johnson? Anquan Boldin?
“I think I’m a lot more ready than people think. I think people label me as a project simply off of stats. I can understand what they see, what they think … but when you think of a project you think of building something from the ground up. I feel like I have a basis. It’s just a few things I’ve got to get down. Everybody has things to work on. I don’t think mine are as crazy as people want to make them out to be.”
—Arizona quarterback Logan Thomas, a fourth-round pick in the draft.
All Thomas has to do is work on making better decisions and improve his accuracy, which is something he wasn't able to do at all during his college career. I think it sounds easy enough, plus he really, really looks like a quarterback and has all the measurables. That's all that matters. Maybe one day Thomas will wake up and just be more accurate throwing the football.
Three times as many TV households (671,000 to 225,000) watched the first round of the NFL draft on May 8 as watched the opening game of the Subway Series between the Mets and Yankees May 12.
That's crazy, because everyone wants to watch the first game of a regular season matchup between the Mets and Yankees. There is no more compelling game than a Subway Series (it is to be capitalized because it's that important) regular season game.
Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week
Plumb forgot this one last week:
Well, golly gee! You plumb had it slip your mind.
So on a quick trip to Nashville a couple of days before the draft, I found myself having a beer and a bowl of turkey chili in a sports bar downtown. Ten minutes into my beer, I noticed it. Smoke.
My God, the place was on fire! Finish your bowl of turkey chili, grab the Brett Favre autographed computer case you carry, drain your beer and then get the hell out of there!
The guy and gal at the next table were both drinking and smoking—and they did neither casually.
This was opposed to Peter who was casually drinking his beer and casually eating his bowl of turkey chili. The difference is the loftiness and grace with which Peter drinks the beer and eats soup.
Now, where I live, New York, smoking has been banned in public bars and buildings for 11 years.
This is otherwise known as "civilization" where smoking has been banned, Big Gulps are banned and the people always respect each other's sense of privacy. New York is the utopia Peter King was looking for and has now found.
Smoking has been banned in city parks for the past three years.
“Surprising to see people smoking in the bar,” I said to my server. “Anybody ever complain?”
By the way, it took Peter 10 minutes to notice the smoke, either that or the people who were smoking didn't arrive until 10 minutes into Peter's beer.
“Not that I’ve heard,” the fellow said. “We’re pretty much still a smoking society down here.”
I don't know where "down here" is, but smoking has been banned in most public places where I live. There are even designated smoking areas at most places of employment. It sounds like Peter has been visiting some dive bars on his tour of Tennessee.
Well there goes a perfectly good Saturday in June I mean hooray for another Triple Crown try!
— Steve Politi (@StevePoliti) May 17, 2014
Sports columnist for the Newark Star Ledger, who presumably will be one of the (apparently reluctant) watchers of the Belmont Stakes in New York in 19 days, when California Chrome tries to become the first Triple Crown winner since 1978.
Ah, horse racing. A sport that isn't really a sport and something I have never understood the draw of.
Ten Things I Think I Think
And always try to remember that these are not things Peter knows, but things he thinks that he thinks. He isn't sure if he thinks them or not, but he thinks that he might.
1. I think I would be surprised if we didn’t read the following headline on the web sometime late Tuesday afternoon: “NFL owners make progress on expanded playoffs.” My guess is a vote is unlikely but possible, and commissioner Roger Goodell wants to be sure he hears every ownership voice that wants to be heard before calling a vote on it...One of the reasons is the increased TV exposure and ratings and ad revenue associated with two more playoff games. I expect the new format to include two valuable entities the league now does not have: Sunday night and Monday night games on wild card weekend, with six wild card games filling the weekend instead of the current four.
Why doesn't the NFL just allow every team to make the playoffs? That would be much easier, increase exposure, ad revenue and ratings also, plus more NFL head coaches could claim they took their team to the playoffs.
2. I think no one asked me (who ever does?), but I think 12 playoff teams is plenty, and 14 waters down the significance of making the postseason. And what’s to stop the league five years from now saying, “The ratings for wild card weekend are so boffo that we should go to 16.”
Now that I agree with Peter King on this, I would like to change my mind. What's the harm in more playoff games? It allows more fans to be a part of the playoffs and if a team isn't good enough to make the playoffs they will simply lose early. More playoff football isn't a bad thing. There, I have changed my mind. I can not in good conscience agree with Peter.
3. I think one of the players I’m anxious to follow in training camp this summer is undrafted free-agent defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat of the Seahawks.
You mean the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year that went undrafted and nobody gave a shit or was all up-in-arms about it because he's not gay? That guy?
Surprisingly undrafted after a 33-start career at defensive end for Texas, Jim Jeffcoat’s son caught the eye of Pete Carroll at a weekend minicamp. He’ll have to be special to dent a very good defensive line, but anyone who accounts for 32 tackles for loss (19 non-sack tackles behind the line, 13 sacks) in that program could open eyes when the real practices start in July.
You mean there was a quality college football player that went undrafted purely based on his skill at playing football? No way, I have been told the only reason that would happen is because teams aren't brave enough to draft a player like this.
4. I think this is why they paid you the big money, Dave Gettleman. The Panthers general manager has to decide what to do, if anything, about a long contract extension for star defensive end Greg Hardy, just 25 years old and in his prime, after Hardy’s run-in with a girlfriend and his temporary jailing … and being ordered to turn in 10 guns to authorities.
Gettleman doesn't have to decide what to do with Hardy until after the NFL season if it even comes to that. He can wait to see how the season goes and then decide what to do with Hardy from there after the case has been adjudicated. It's not against the law to own guns (though if this were an NFL owner I'm sure Peter will say that Irsay has "gun addiction issues") and nothing has been shown positive or negative in the case yet regarding Hardy's guilt.
In addition, the judge in the case ordered Hardy to attend three Alcoholics Anonymous classes.
No mention of "addiction issues"? That's right, Hardy is an NFL player, not an owner. NFL players get suspended for violating NFL rules all the time, but Goodell is still hard at work thinking about the appropriate punishment for Jim Irsay.
This could be a very tough call for Gettleman, particularly if Hardy is cleared to play at the start of the season and tears up the NFC South as he did last year.
Hardy did have nine of his fifteen sacks last year against NFC South teams, but he got seven of those sacks in the last two weeks of the season and was completely shut out by Joe Staley in the playoffs.
10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:
a. After the bitter Montreal-Boston series, TSN’s Aaron Ward reported that Boston’s Milan Lucic said to two Canadiens, “I’m going to —-ing kill you next year.” That’s nice.
b. Two days later, in front of the press, Lucic said, “I’m not apologizing for what was said in the handshake line.” That’s nicer.
c. I want to hear what Lucic thinks on July 19. Not May 19. If it’s the same, that’s not a guy I’d want on my team. Ridiculous Irony of the Week: Lucic recently released a book entitled, Not Cool to Bully in School.
I'm not sure that's ironic because I don't think one grown man telling two other grown men he'll "fucking kill you next year" could qualify as bullying at all. First off, they are all grown men, and second, it is one person threatening two people. Can one person bully multiple people in this way?
h. Coffeenerdness: So I’ve been working a bit with a nutritionist, and after studying my diet (or lack thereof), she said, “No more lattes.” The horror!
How can a person be "a bit" of a nutritionist? I would think a person is either a nutritionist or not.
We reached a bit of a truce there. I shan’t give up my favorite warm beverage, but I think I can handle three a week, with brewed Italian roast the rest of the time. We’ll see.
Speaking of people who have "addiction issues," if Peter can't limit himself to three lattes a week then he should perhaps go to coffee rehab.
j. Donald Sterling stories: Zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
These stories are boring, but they certainly weren't boring a few weeks ago when he commented on the Sterling situation in two straight MMQB's. It's a boring situation once Peter is done commenting on the situation.
The Adieu Haiku
Draft withdrawal sets in.
One hope I have this morning:
Mayock. Beach. St. Kitts.
Mayock certainly trolled hard enough when talking about Teddy Bridgewater to deserve a vacation. I mean, he ignored all of the tape he saw of Bridgewater and focused his entire evaluation on the bad Pro Day Bridgewater had.