Tuesday, February 24, 2015

6 comments MMQB Review: Peter King Sets the Trade Market for Sam Bradford Edition

Peter King was shocked by the random and irrational violence of murderers in last week's MMQB. He also previewed the combine, mentioned how many of THE MMQB writers would be at the combine and then seemed confused as to why some people are so combine-nutty. It's almost like the media's focus on the combine has something to do with it. This week Peter talks about the Buccaneers choice at #1 overall, calls Jameis Winston "the most scrutinized draft pick of all-time" which is absolutely ridiculous, tries to drum up a trade market for Sam Bradford (and talks to Jeff Fisher, which is a coincidence both these happen in the same MMQB of course), and finally sheds light on those Duke fans who camp out in line for tickets to basketball games. Why don't these students ever get mentioned by ESPN or any other major sports outlets?

The Most Scrutinized Draft Pick of All Time was on the phone Sunday, a day after the poking and prodding of the NFL combine here, and I asked The Most Scrutinized Draft Pick of All Time if he was ready for the private detectives from multiple teams and intrusive questions and the 30 hours of one-on-one time with one team alone (Tampa Bay GM Jason Licht’s estimate) that he faces in the next 66 days, between now and the first round of the NFL draft.

A couple of things here:

1. Jameis Winston is NOT the most scrutinized draft pick of all-time. Nearly every year there is a draft pick who gets this label. It was Johnny Manziel last year, Tyrann Mathieu and Tim Tebow before him. Even if Peter is joking, it's not funny, because I don't believe Peter is capable of being this self-aware.

2. When asking this question, does Peter think there is any chance that Winston will say, "Nope, I'm not ready at all for all of these questions. Hey Peter, mind if I do some cocaine off a hooker's ass in the back seat of a stolen car?"

“I love it,” Jameis Winston said. “I welcome it. They’re really going to find out the type of person I am. Character is not about what you do when you’re around people. Character is what you show when no one is looking.

Right, so don't judge Winston on stealing crab legs or screaming "Fuck her right in the pussy" while standing on a table, because that was done around other people. That's not what his character is about. His character is about all the shit he does in private when no one is looking. So judge his character on the things you don't know about him because he does them in private and therefore you have absolutely no way of judging his character based on these things.

I'm pretty sure it's "character is what you do when you think no one is looking," but then again, I'm not very good with words. More importantly, those things Winston did that everyone knows about, don't judge him on that. And someone was looking when he was accused of rape, so don't include that either when judging his character. Focus on the things you don't know about Winston in order to judge his character.

I believe if they do a hard, hard investigation into Jameis the person, they will find out that I’m a good guy.”

I already love Jameis Winston by the way. He switches from third person to first person in the same sentence. Bengoodfella loves it when people talk in this type of way. It makes him feel good and that's why I like Jameis Winston.

The answer came back thusly from I’d say about 80 percent of the NFL cognoscenti who had an opinion or some insight on the subject: Tampa’s taking Jameis. 

It’s too early to be so definitive, of course. And I don’t believe the Bucs have a final answer,

It's the very end of February and there have been zero personal workouts or Pro Days for the draft that is two-and-a-half months away. So Peter King is reporting the Buccaneers HAVEN'T decided who they will be drafting in May? I just don't believe it.

But a Saturday breakfast with the formerly invisible Licht, the most influential football man in the league for the next two months, didn’t do anything to disabuse me of the idea.

At breakfast, Licht ate crab legs and made constant jokes about why there wasn't any duck on the menu because, "We all know ducks are assholes in a fight and you never want a duck on your team." Also, Licht wore an Indian headdress and did the Tomahawk Chop when the waiter brought him a new ice water. The signs that the Buccaneers are taking Winston are there, you just have to pay attention to them really hard.

But last week coach Lovie Smith spoke positively of Winston. And at one point Saturday morning Licht mused about the two possibilities of Winston the person. “Bad guy or immaturity?” Licht said. “I’m leaning toward the latter.”

And by the way, as far as being a quarterback in the NFL goes, being immature is nearly as big of a strike as just being a bad guy is. Immaturity can submarine a quarterback's career just as much as being an asshole can.

You can deal with some immaturity. But seven months of off-field mayhem and bitter consequences for the NFL have put an even bigger spotlight on the risks of taking players with pockmarked résumés.

Some immaturity can be dealt with. The problem is that, and I don't dislike Jameis Winston or hold his college stuff against him, things like shoplifting, accusations of rape, and screaming obscenities in a public place aren't all just typical immature things. They are and they aren't. If these were things that ALL happened 2-3 years ago then maybe it's less of an issue.

Just how bad has it been at quarterback for the Bucs? In their 39 seasons, they’ve never had a quarterback last longer than five seasons as the team’s leading passer. Doug Williams, Vinny Testaverde and Trent Dilfer all spent five years as the starter. Amazing to think the Bucs have never had a true, long-term franchise quarterback in four decades.

Tampa Bay has traditionally not been a very good team. They had three winning seasons from 1976-1997 and nine winning seasons since then. That's 12 winning seasons out of 39 seasons. So it's amazing they haven't had a steady quarterback, but it also makes sense seeing how bad they traditionally have been.

Licht said he has scouted Mariota four times over the past two seasons. Ditto Winston. He said he has seen every college game of each player on tape now. I asked Licht if he could pick out a play from both players that he felt typifies them. He said he couldn’t think of just one for Mariota, because there were many that highlighted his athleticism and passing ability. But then he pulled out his smart phone and said, “If I see a good play I want to keep, I put it on my phone,” he said. “Look at this one from Jameis. I was actually at this game.”

I don't think the Buccaneers have made up their mind yet, (since it's two-and-a-half months before the actual draft occurs) but they are totally leaning towards taking Winston. When Licht can't think of one thing that sticks out about Mariota, that's not necessarily a good sign for him as the #1 overall pick.

“I’ve been lucky in this league in my 20 years. I’ve seen some great ones. I was in Miami starting out when Dan Marino was there. I worked for New England and watched Tom Brady grow. And I’ve been around Donovan McNabb and Kurt Warner. 

One of these things are not like the others.

A year ago Johnny Manziel came to the combine and was quite well-rehearsed. He had off-field issues—nightlife stuff mostly, and being sent home ignominiously from the Manning Passing Academy. Manziel had all the answers down pat, explaining how he was a good person and had reasons (maturity ones) for his mess-ups.

And at the time I made sarcastic comments about how Manziel was changed, because immaturity issues and things like that don't just magically go away once an athlete has the opportunity to get paid to play his sport. These issues temporarily go away in order to achieve a short-term goal, but it takes more than the chance to be drafted to relieve a player of his immaturity.

He didn’t try to hide his confidence. As he told the press on Friday: “This is no competition between just me and Mariota, because one thing about me, I plan on winning the Super Bowl next year so it’s going to be me versus Peyton Manning and Jameis versus Tom Brady. I want to be viewed like that.”

This third person talk is just wonderful. It makes Bengoodfella love Jameis that much more. 

There could be one other sticky thing Winston will have to address with teams. He also was Florida State’s baseball closer, and his two agents, Greg Genske and Kenny Felder, primarily represent baseball players. Genske repped Manny Ramirez for five years. While Winston said often over the weekend he is now a full-time football player, he did equivocate when we spoke Sunday. “Right now I am focusing on football,” Winston said.

Asked if he would ever want to play both sports as a pro, he said: “I can’t speak on that. It always has been my dream, but I’m just playing football right now.”

Oh. Doesn't Jameis know that baseball is dying? Baseball is dying Jameis, GET OUT WHILE YOU CAN!

I see a couple of problems that would preclude this. Tampa Bay is not taking Winston number one if he says, “I’d like to play baseball for three months every year.” Or one month, because of the training time it would take away from football.

Russell Wilson joined the Rangers for spring training last year and plans on doing it again this year. Winston could easily do the same thing.

Deion Sanders did it because he was a cornerback, not a quarterback. It’s just too hard to stay on top of being an NFL quarterback to think he could double-dip. Secondly: What team would go down the baseball road—even a team in need of a 95-mph-throwing closer—if the player had to leave the team every year just as the pennant races were heating up?

I don't think this would happen with Winston and it seems like a non-issue. He just said he wanted to play both sports as a dream, but that doesn't mean he plans on doing it right now.

But I don’t see it. Not saying it’s impossible, but I am saying it’s highly unlikely he could, or would, try to play both sports at the same time.

The Rangers drafted Winston in the 15th round coming out of high school. Maybe he and Russell Wilson could attend spring training together and that means zero football writers would care what Winston did because he's with Russell, so what could go wrong?

They’ve left the starting gate, and Winston’s got a couple of lengths on Mariota. Winston got used to playing from behind last year at Florida State. Now he’s got to handle prosperity—and be sure the private eyes don’t find anything.

Jameis, the private eyes are watching you. They do know your every move. Maybe they will judge your character on what they don't see, instead of what they do see.

The announcement that the Raiders and Chargers have bonded to fact-find about a new stadium project in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson is odd enough. But it is driven by the fact that there is a very dangerous game of musical chairs playing in L.A. right now. Three teams for two spots, max. And because the independently wealthy owner of the Rams, Stan Kroenke, already has his own stadium planned in nearby Inglewood, there was pressure on the Chargers and the Raiders to get in the L.A. game, and get in fast.

Extremely wealthy people threatening to move their team only holds my interest in that I feel bad for the fans of the city that may lose their NFL team. Otherwise, wealthy people are going to do what wealthy people are going to do.

But there’s one other question that had a lot of people at the combine buzzing. And that’s the question about two teams from one division partnering on a stadium project—and everything that goes along with that. Three notes on this:

1. If the Raiders and Chargers join forces on this stadium, there would have to be a realignment involving at least two teams. Because Los Angeles is America’s No. 2 television market, it would be impossible for both L.A. teams to be in the same conference. One of these teams would have to move to the NFC so that both Fox and CBS could each have an L.A. franchise in its lineup.

Well, if the Rams move to L.A. then it would make sense for them to just stay where they are in the NFC West. If the Raiders and Chargers move, and the Rams stay where they are, then the NFL should move the Cardinals to the AFC West and either the Raiders or Chargers to the NFC West. Fixed.

2. So who would move? This is all speculation, but I could see Oakland staying in the AFC West and San Diego moving to the NFC West to join a more geographically aligned division. It would be easy for the St. Louis Rams to move to the AFC West because it would mean the Rams and Chiefs would be able to form the kind of cross-state rivalry that could be excellent for both teams, and especially the occasionally attendance-strapped Rams.

Or that could happen. Either way, I feel bad for whichever fan base may lose their NFL team, especially if it ends up being the St. Louis Rams. They would have dealt with mediocrity over the last decade and then get kicked in the balls for not supporting the team enough while Rams' management jerks around without a sense of urgency.

And now, Peter King tries to drum up a trade market for Sam Bradford (who plays for the Rams, who have a connection to Peter in that the son of Peter's agent is the COO of the Rams and Peter shares an agent with Jeff Fisher) in the same way he tried to drum up a free agent market for Alex Mack (who shares an agent with Peter). It's a rumor that came out Friday or Saturday, but how often does Peter address rumors like this in MMQB, especially when neither side has confirmed the rumor?

Could the Rams actually trade star-crossed quarterback Sam Bradford to the desperate Browns? It’s unlikely, and the biggest reason is that Cleveland would almost certainly not want to trade something significant for a quarterback, pay him $14 million in the last year of his rookie contract, and face the prospect of him being a free agent after just one season.

I can't imagine what a team would offer for Bradford that would be enough for the Rams to part ways with him. I think the Rams absolutely need to bring in another starting quarterback option (this was true two years ago also), but would a 5th round pick really be enough to trade Bradford if I'm the Rams? Absolutely not and why would a team give up a 3rd round pick for one season of an injury-prone quarterback making $14 million? I don't see the trade market unless a team gets crazy and dangles a 1st or 2nd round pick. The combination of Bradford being expensive and a starting option for the Rams with the fact he's a free agent after this year makes me think there isn't a market for his services. Of course, that won't stop Peter from trying.

But everything besides that in this story does make sense.

Does it though? Really, does it? It seems like a situation where Bradford is more valuable to the Rams than another team who would try Bradford out for a season and give up a draft pick to do so. Of course, it's not a good draft for quarterbacks. So that probably plays a part too.

The trade could look something like this: The Browns send St. Louis a 2016 draft choice or choices that would be based on how durable Bradford is or how well he plays in 2015, or both.

Much like what happened in the Alex Mack situation where Peter laid out specifically that Marvin Demoff had a way for the Browns to not match any offer sheet a team signed Alex Mack to, this is the part where Peter relays the information from the Rams organization on what it would require to acquire Sam Bradford. If you haven't noticed, I'm very jaded and believe Peter is being used to set the market for Bradford's services.

For example, the Browns could trade a third-round pick that would become a second-round pick if Bradford had 14 starts or more, and would become a first-round pick if Bradford reached certain performance benchmarks. The Rams are almost certainly taking a quarterback high in this draft anyway and could be looking at the last year of Bradford as a Ram.

So, NFL teams, here is the outline of what the Rams would want for Sam Bradford. Straight from Peter King, which came straight from the Rams organization if my cynical mind is correct. 

Given all that, however, Bradford does represent St. Louis’ best chance to win in 2015, so Cleveland would have to pony up a very serious offer for the Rams to even think of it.

This is fucking laughable. Really, Peter is setting the market for Bradford in a way that I don't know he does often for athletes that aren't connected to him in some third-party way. Peter is making it clear the Rams DO NOT want to trade Sam Bradford, so come at them with your highest possible offer and they will think about it. Again, I can't help but think Peter is being used as a mouthpiece to set the market once again. He's communicating to NFL teams on behalf of a player or other NFL team through his MMQB column. That's how it seems to me.

But I can tell you that the Rams would listen if the Browns were serious.

Peter can tell you this because the Rams said to him, "We are serious if other teams want to make offers" while dictating the terms they wanted Peter to get out in the open. Peter has discussed the trade market for other football players in MMQB, but I can't think of another time he has not only:

1. Discussed the trade market with a specific player going to a specific team as a response to an unconfirmed rumor that team may be interested in the player.

2. Set out the specific terms required to acquire said player.

3. Indicated that player's current team doesn't want to trade the player, while indicating the offer must be serious.

4. Then stating that player's current team would listen to the trade offer if it were serious.

Peter is, again, doing leg work for a player or organization has ties to his agent. It's absolutely shameless. It seems this way to me.

I just don’t think the Browns would be unless they had some assurance about Bradford being in Cleveland well into the future if he does play well in 2015.

Which is absolutely the reason they would not do this trade necessarily. It's a rumor and I would be surprised Peter addressed it in this way, but given the overall circumstances it shouldn't surprise me. He's done this shit before. 

The most interesting development recently concerning the 2015 free-agency class is the acknowledgment in Denver that there’s a legitimate chance the Broncos don’t want to pay tight end Julius Thomas fair market value for his services. Thomas’ agent, veteran contract negotiator Frank Bauer, told the Denver Post on Friday that he felt the Broncos were “pushing him away” after Thomas declined the team’s offer of five years and $40 million. I’m not eager to defend or attack the offer, but want to address the effect of what this will mean if the Broncos choose to let Thomas walk.

It means the Broncos may realize that Peyton Manning can make another tight end who doesn't have Thomas' skill look good?

Peyton Manning loves Julius Thomas. I thought that Thomas’ high-ankle sprain midway through the season really helped doom the Denver offensive attack because it took away Manning’s most significant weapon in the intermediate part of the field. Thomas had 24 touchdown catches over the past two seasons. Losing that kind of security blanket for a quarterback, especially one with an arm showing signs of decline, would be a huge blow.

Here's the issue that was discussed a little bit in last week's MMQB regarding Manning taking a pay cut...the Broncos have to do what is right for the Broncos' organization next year and five years from now. Allowing Peyton Manning to dictate which players they keep and don't keep is not a smart policy because Manning may not be in Denver next year or the year after that. Life goes on in Denver after Manning retires. Contracts don't just get ripped up.

Just think: Two of the most important people over Manning’s past two prolific seasons have been offensive coordinator Adam Gase and Julius Thomas. Now both could be gone. Manning hates change. And if Julius Thomas does not return, I can tell you Manning is going to hate that.

Yes, it would suck if the Broncos don't get to re-sign Julius Thomas because they are too busy paying up for one of Manning's other favorite targets, Demaryius Thomas. The issue is really that the Broncos have done a great job surrounding Manning with great offensive weapons and the reality is they can't just keep these players around forever simply because Manning may put on a sad face that he has to work with new players. The Broncos can't pay for Pro Bowl talent at every offensive skill position simply so Peyton Manning doesn't have to deal with a little change.

The Broncos have been very quiet about whatever negotiations are happening to try to convince Manning to take a little less than the $19 million he is scheduled to earn in 2015. I wonder if part of Elway’s sales pitch to Manning will be that if Manning took a little less, then Elway could offer Julius Thomas a little more.

That would be the main point of my sales pitch if I were John Elway. Manning doesn't want change? Make it easier for the Broncos to affect less change.

Three questions with a coach.
Jeff Fisher of the Rams is the co-chairman of the league’s competition committee, which has several major rules issues to take up this winter.

Ah yes, my boy. I would like three questions with Jeff Fisher and I'm sure he wouldn't like the three questions I had to ask him.

What is the best argument against coaches being able to use replay on every type of play, as some coaches, including Bill Belichick, have suggested?
Fisher: “Well, we have a lot of work to do to evaluate that. For the whole game?

HEY! Peter will be the one asking the questions here, buddy. Shut up and just answer the questions. Here's a question Peter has, what do you want Peter to say about Bradford's injury? He needs to add something about Bradford making "good time with his rehab" or something like that if he's going to pump up the trade market for Bradford.


Fisher: “So if someone throws a touchdown pass against us to win the game, I’m going to throw the challenge flag. Somebody [committed a holding penalty] out there. Somebody did something. You start there and then go … I mean, I don’t know.

It seems Fisher has a firm grasp over what Peter means, but "I mean, I don't know" isn't exactly a great answer so far to the question. I mean, you know?

Replay was designed to overturn obvious errors. It was never designed to include penalties.

But...it could be designed to include penalties. That's the point of the question Peter is asking. The rules can be changed, or at least consideration to changing the rules can happen, especially from someone with the title "co-chairman of the league's competition committee."

The game is hard to officiate. We’re making strides in that area. If I challenged a holding call and a false start in the first half, I’ve used all my challenges.”

Oh, so every penalty shouldn't be open to being challenged because the officials miss so many damn calls that the head coaches would run out of challenges? Great, that makes sense then.

And more importantly, a head coach would have to strategically consider what calls he wants to challenge as opposed to just blindly challenging every call he thinks is wrong. So "I've used all my challenges in the first half" isn't a good reason to not consider every call as having the opportunity to be challenged.

So the co-chair of the rules committee sounds like he thinks it will be tough to make a change in what everyone was screaming about after the Dez Bryant non-catch in the playoffs. I asked Fisher about the chance of calling a catch a catch as soon as the player possesses the ball with two feet on the ground—without the so-called “making a football move” to finish the process of a catch. “Then,” he said, “you’d be eliminating the defenseless player aspect of the whole thing.”

What? That explanation doesn't make sense to me. What does making a football move have to do with the defenseless player aspect of the whole thing? Defensive players can still tackle opposing offensive players without tackling them by their neck or head.

Jameis Winston was a better quarterback in the second half of games than the first in 2014 at Florida State. You knew that. But although he told me Sunday, “All my interceptions came in the first half of games,” (he was exaggerating, but you get his point) it’s not quite as stark as I’d thought.

Yards Pct. Yards/att. TD-Int
2014: First and Second Quarters 1,926 .628 7.7 14-13
2014: After Halftime 1,981 .682 9.1 11-5

The problem is that in the NFL Winston won't be on a team that has superior talent to nearly every other NFL team, so if he throws all of his interceptions in the first half then he won't have a chance to lead a comeback, because his team will be losing by too many points. Obviously ever throwing an interception isn't ideal, but throwing interceptions in the first half can put his team in a hole.

This Week’s Sign That The Footballpocalypse Is Upon Us:

The number of media members covering the combine has risen 5,300% in the past 15 years.
The math: Approximately 15 to 20 reporters covered the combine in 2000. This weekend, the NFL credentialed 1,071 media members—and turned away quite a few (mostly college media people, who formerly were credentialed) because of space restrictions. Meaning this: For every one reporter who covered the combine in 2000, there were 53 this year.

I still don't understand Peter's fascination with reporting about how popular the combine is when he is the head of a football site that sends nearly their entire staff to the combine and he writes his MMQB about players and how they performed at the combine. Perhaps the combine is more popular in 2015 than it was in 2000 because more media organizations are sending more reporters to cover the combine, so therefore the general public pays more attention to it. It's weird to me that Peter refers to the number of media members covering the combine as the "Footballpocalypse" when he sent most of the MMQB staff to cover the combine. 

My friend Jack Bowers had a bout with the same cancer that killed Stuart Scott, cancer of the appendix, a few years back. After several surgeries, Jack is in a good place and on track to live a long time. But a byproduct of having a brush with a very serious illness was he stopped putting off things he loved to do. He just started doing them. I have been a partner in crime with Jack for a couple of them, including a World Series trip to San Francisco, and he told me a few months ago he wanted to go back to Duke, where he attended school in the ’70s, and see this year’s Duke-North Carolina basketball game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

It was snowing hard as I walked through Krzyzewskiville, the tent city outside Cameron where students camp out for the privilege of going to this game.

Finally, someone has the guts to discuss Krzyzewskiville and the students who camp out prior to important games in order to attend that game. Why hasn't any other media organization focused on these students? At no point during any telecast of a Duke game does the crowd at Cameron get mentioned, nor does anyone mention the tent city that is Krzyzewskiville. Thank goodness Peter is here to shine a light on a heretofore undocumented group of college students. 

There are byzantine rules about how many people need to stay in the tent, and for how long, and for how many overnights, to keep one’s place in line, and for all 10 people in Tent Three to qualify to get into the game. Suffice to say Fuchs had to sleep outside for 15 overnights in order to get a good standing-room position for a two-hour basketball game.

I talked to Fuchs after the game. He and his friends, upon being admitted to the arena an hour or so before tipoff, chose the front row of the student section across from the North Carolina bench.

The part that doesn't always get talked about is how anyone in the way of students trying to get a place to stand during the game could be bowled over in the mad dash the students make to get in the door and then find the perfect place to watch the game. It's nerve-wracking to watch and I feel like there could be more order to this part of the process.

“Does it bother you at all that you might have done better on these tests if you’d been in the library those nights you were sleeping outside?” I asked.
His answer was perfect, I thought.
Said Fuchs: “It doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it would have if being in the library would have made me miss the game.”

Thank goodness someone has focused on the Cameron Crazies. God knows ESPN certainly didn't do enough of this.

The national baseball reporter, on the hand-written Alex Rodriguez apology for his PED use. Which, it seems, no one was buying. 

Nobody has to buy the apology. If A-Rod didn't make the apology then writers like Jon Heyman would have called for A-Rod to AT LEAST apologize for his actions.

Thank you, Michael. Thank you.

And yet, though 40-yard dash times are overrated Peter still sends his employees to the combine to watch the 40-yard dash times.

On the flip side of this Tweet, the five slowest wide receivers at last year's combine were Christopher Boyd, Jarvis Landry, Josh Stewart, Cody Hoffman, and Ryan Grant.

The five fastest wide receivers at last year's combine were Brandon Cooks, John Brown, Donte Moncrief, Paul Richardson, and Martavis Bryant.

Notice that four of those receivers contributed to their team in their rookie year, but only Jarvis Landy contributed to his team in his rookie year from the slow class. Speed isn't everything, but to continuously throw Anquan Boldin out as the reason why the 40-yard dash is overrated ignores other information that there is some semblance of correlation between a receiver running a faster 40-yard dash and contributing in the NFL. I wouldn't say this correlation is true every year. Still, Kelvin Benjamin and Allen Robinson are the only receivers in the bottom-10 of 40-yard dash times from last year that contributed to their team. Odell Beckham and Sammy Watkins were in the top-10 of 40-yard dash times as well during last year's combine. So a receiver showing speed in the 40-yard dash does have some meaning.

Ten Things I Think I Think

2. I think the most important workout on the horizon is an early one. Marcus Mariota’s pro day is March 12 in Eugene, and I talked to a couple of teams at the combine who will be watching to see how he does the kind of mundane things he didn’t do much in college. 

Mundane things like doing dishes, fixing his own dinner and paying bills?

Notably, dropping back, staying in the pocket and throwing from a stationary position. One of the other things Mariota’s been working on is the simple calling of plays in the huddle. In college Mariota didn’t huddle much, didn’t take the snap under center much and didn’t have a lot of power to change things at the line. All that is about to change, and how quickly he adapts will be vital to his early success as a pro.

Quite a few college quarterbacks are coming out of college not having a lot of experience doing these things. It doesn't mean they can't learn, but taking a snap under center and huddling are two really important parts of being an NFL quarterback.

4. I think teams that pick after six in the first round but like Mariota could finally give Washington a lucky personnel break. Washington, of course, traded half the western world to move up four spots in 2011 to get Robert Griffin III,

And this trade is the one that, of course, propelled the Rams to the heights that team is now seeing.

But now Washington picks five, and if Mariota generates the kind of interest he should, maybe St. Louis (picking 10th), Cleveland (12th) or even Chip Kelly’s Eagles (20th) would move up for him. God knows Kelly would want the quarterback he recruited to Oregon. If Washington could recoup an extra first-round pick, or a high two at least, new GM Scot McCloughan would be smart to consider moving down five spots or so.

Yes, I guess he would be smart to do that. I don't know if Peter is trying to set up the compensation the Rams would offer to move up and get Mariota by stating it would require an extra first or second round pick to move up five spots (which is what the Rams would have to do), but I definitely think it would require more than that to get the Redskins to move back 15 spots in order to allow Chip Kelly the chance to get Mariota. It would take more than another first round pick to get me to move back 15 spots personally.

5. I think the Pro Football Hall of Fame is not inclined to rewrite its bylaws to include a morals clause, which could get some attention this year with Darren Sharper (accused of being a serial rapist) being eligible for the Hall for the first time. As I suspected, the Hall thinks the slope is too slippery to begin judging players on acts that happened off the field, and after their careers ended.

I do agree that the slope is a little slippery and there should be a Pro Football Hall of Fame vote system based solely on a player's production on the field. Still, Peter's "I'm going to quit voting if Darren Sharper isn't considered" stance seems very, very strong to me regardless of what Peter thinks the Hall of Fame is or is not inclined to do. I'm still not over the way he caped up for Sharper like that. The rules are the rules, but to say he would quit? That seems drastic to me.

8. I think I love Dorial Green-Beckham or Todd Gurley to Seattle at number 31 in the first round. Green-Beckham’s the receiver who got kicked off Missouri’s team for marijuana violations, and Gurley is coming back from the ACL tear. Seattle can afford to take chances because of the bedrock of talent on the roster.

Me from last week's MMQB: 

Also, I think the Seahawks will probably be linked to Green-Beckham too, because after all (says the media) they dealt with Marshawn Lynch so Green-Beckham wouldn't be so hard to deal with. Pete Carroll is a player's coach, he'll get through to Green-Beckham.

The predictability of the media, specifically Peter King in this case, is absolutely laughable. They link "problem players" to teams that are successful because those teams have so much talent and such a strong coaching staff. Because a guy like Percy Harvin worked so well in Seattle, I can see how Dorial Green-Beckham would work out as well. I can't wait for Peter to link Green-Beckham to possibly the Cardinals, Ravens (though he would be surprised if they had interest since they just got done with the Ray Rice issue), Patriots and Colts. Those teams can handle a talent like Green-Beckham, because they are successful and success cures everything.

Peter is so predictable.

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

b. Tremendous job by Academy Award winner Julianne Moore (as the victim) and Kristen Stewart (as her wiseass daughter and, ultimately, savior) in “Still Alice,” the movie about a brilliant college professor and early-onset Alzheimer’s patient...I never saw any of those vampire movies that Stewart was in, but she is one great performer.

They were called "Twilight" and it would have taken five seconds to look this up as opposed to referring to them as "those vampire movies that Stewart was in." For a guy who tells his readers to "Google that" from time-to-time when discussing something he doesn't think his readers will understand, Peter sure doesn't like to take his own advice. Speaking of not taking his own advice...

And I haven’t seen enough of the nominated movies to know if Moore deserved the Oscar for best actress,

Which means Peter King is about to make a comment indicating that Julianne Moore deserved the Oscar for best actress. Once Peter says he doesn't know if he can do something, rest assured the next thing he will do is that something he said that he wasn't sure he could do.

but if someone beats her it’ll have to be with the acting job of a lifetime.

There we go. And by the way, usually when someone gets an Oscar nomination then they are getting that nomination for the acting job of a lifetime. So if someone had beaten Moore, then winning the Oscar over Moore would have been a victory indicating that actress had performed the acting job of a lifetime.

c. Coffeenerdness: Too many Starbucks are careless with the milk in the Flat White, I’m finding. It’s whole milk, not 2 percent.

God, you are the worst. I wish Peter King had to work as a barista for a month just to see what a pain in the ass it is to deal with people like himself. Yes, "getting careless with the milk" as if using whole milk and not 2% milk is a mistake that will result in the death of thousands. By the way, the guy who accuses baristas of getting careless with the milk is someone who used a source this past summer that was 100% wrong about what happened in the room when Goodell interviewed Ray Rice about his domestic violence incident. Peter apologized and moved on, but I find it interesting that Peter is going to accuse anyone of being careless in their job for the next 10 years.

Only a true coffeenerd would understand the difference.

Only a true coffeenerd haughty, self-important dipshit would understand the difference. There, it's fixed.

d. Beernerdness: While in Durham, we dined at a local place with only one beer: Torch Pilsner, of Foothills Brewing in Winston-Salem. What a terrific beer. Much more bite and flavor than a usual pilsner. Highly recommended.

(Bengoodfella checks the rating he gave this beer on Untapped...dammit, we agree!)

f. Haven’t been as cold as I was Friday and Saturday mornings at the combine. It was so cold that you didn’t stop and talk to anyone on the street. Just exchanged quick hellos.

Only in New York. Wait, this didn't happen in New York, but happened in Indianapolis? Peter's world is spinning.

g. Stopped in the Nike Suite at the combine. Big companies that serve players and agents and coaches have these big areas with food and drink and perks for Combinees. Now here’s something I never saw before: The Nike Suite had two barbers cutting hair (not mine) and pampering people. That was cool.

Peter has never seen barbers cutting hair and pampering people? Doesn't Peter visit Sports Clips? I feel like he was the target market when they invented the MVP Experience.

Adieu Haiku
Combine ends today. Indy’s pub owners are sad.
Football folks can drink.

Well done! This haiku is amazingly less interesting and even more pointless than the one Peter created last week. 


Eric C said...

Peter is such a starfucker. Look at him fluff Winston up now that they are on interview terms. You know if he wouldn't sit down with Peter, it would have been grave warnings about Jameis. The worst thing he has to say about the kid is that he is good at baseball in addition to football, as if he's going to go close for someone a few months a year when he's not playing football. He's not THAT special.

Now I happen to think Jameis comes with risks, but the upside is there and if I were Tampa I'd bet on his upside over Mariota's clean cut image.

Ericb said...

Can you imagine how Peter would react if Cam Newton referred to himself in the third person?

Bengoodfella said...

Eric, it was very smart for Winston to sit with Peter and talk to him. That's how Manziel got on Peter's good side. Staying on the good side of the media is so important. I don't know if being a closer in the majors is something real that could happen. It is sort of a weak red flag to me.

I do believe Jameis was immature and all of that. Really the things he's done have been more stupid and immature than just outright immaturity. It's still an issue the Bucs should investigate, but at least teams know all of his secrets...maybe?

Ericb, Peter doesn't like it when Cam does the Superman thing when down in a game, so I feel like if Cam had done a pre-draft interview in the third person it would not have endeared himself to Peter. See, that's a good example of why getting off on the right foot with the media is so important.

Chris said...

Not just Cam, imagine if Josh Freeman referred to himself in the third person. Peter would want him executed at dawn

Eric C said...

When Jameis speaks of himself in third person, it's precocious.

Eric said...

This MMQB really pissed me off. It didn't piss me off because PK is a precocious douchebag (well, he's a douchebag, at least). Nope. It pissed me off because he deals in a game that relies on stats. Not like baseball, but a game that relies on stats. As such, he should be able to produce a graph that isn't a flaming piece of shit on the ground. Here are his row headings: "First and Second quarters" and "After Half". What that fuck is that? It's a mail-in. It doesn't change what he is trying to say, but please try to pretend to be a professional when you put together a graph, Peter King.