Tag Archives: NFL

Flacco should get a raise, but how much?

Just a short thought today about the Flacco contact situation. Flacco received a ~$20 million a year deal to make him the highest/top paid Quarterback right now, but it begs the question in my head, is he really worth it?

Now I understand that he did just lead his team to Super Bowl victory, but does he really deserve top flight money just due to a hot run in the playoffs? Everybody these days thinks that if a player is on the championship winning team that he automatically should be the top paid player. The passing game this year was not the best in the NFL. The Flacco led passing game was mid-pack in all passing stats, but yet he should be paid better than a Rodgers, Brees, or Brady?

It is time now to reel in the insanity, and pay Flacco what he is really worth, as a high mid-pack QB which only should be around 10-12 million a season, maybe 14 with incentives. Not everybody should get what they want, even in success. NFL players are one play away from injury, a bad play or the bench, don’t let the high of the Super Bowl cloud against reasonable judgment.

I know the current deal with Flacco is a done deal, but I hope that reasonable judgement will finally kick in just like with the rookie contracts issue and teams will wait until they come off the cloud and make sound choices on how to spend their money.

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My Predictions Wrap-up

Super Bowl XLVII is finally over with the Baltimore Ravens defeating the San Francisco 49ers by a score of 34-31. With that being said another NFL season is in the books. In one of my previous posts, I predicted some things for the game, lets see how I did…

  1. Manti Te’o will be seen at the game with his girlfriend Incorrect!
  2. Tebow will be mentioned at least once. Incorrect!
  3. Phil Simms will say Lawrence Taylor’s name at least twice Incorrect!
  4. Total number of times the Harbaugh family will be shown by CBS: 8 Incorrect! Only showed them 1 time.
  5. A head coach with the last name of Harbaugh will win the Super Bowl Correct!

My serious predictions…

  1. Number of commercials during the first quarter including the end of quarter commercial: 5 Correct!
  2. Rushing yards by Colin Kaepernick: 80 Incorrect! Only 62 Yards
  3. Halftime Score: San Francisco 17; Baltimore 10 Wrong! Baltimore 21; San Francisco 6
  4. Missed FG’s by Akers: 1 Incorrect! Did not miss a FG (Thanks to some luck)
  5. Final Score: San Francisco 31; Baltimore 20 Incorrect! Baltimore 34; San Francisco 31

Some final thoughts on the Super Bowl XLVII:

  • I was very shocked to find out that the second quarter interception of Kaepernick was the first pick in any San Francisco Super Bowl appearance
  • Bold move by John Harbaugh with the fake Field Goal. He put his trust in the defense and it paid off in the end.
  • Flacco looked very good in the first half going 13 for 20 with 3 passing TD’s, Flacco was able to throw the ball downfield (With a little bit of luck)
  • Based on the halftime show from Beyoncé this year and the way everybody was dressed, I clearly see everybody has gotten over the Janet Jackson fiasco from Super Bowl XXXVIII, not that I minded 🙂 .
  • What a kickoff return by Jacoby Jones to start the second half!
  • Power Outage during the biggest game of the year. I’m guessing the conspiracy theorists will say a convenience store group pulled the power so people would go out and buy more snack/beer.
  • Good comeback for the 49ers in the third quarter into the fourth, but it was not enough.

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MLB losing touch with fans

A couple of days ago MLB approved a couple of rule changes for the upcoming 2013 season as explained in this article.Normally when I hear about rules changes, I’m ready to jump right into the article and update my knowledge of the rules in the sport. With this article, I was also struck by a sense of disappointment as MLB once again proved to me that they are out of touch with the fan’s and their expectations of the game.

Frankly, I don’t care about banning the third to first move or adding the seventh coach to the dugout during the game. Along with the on field interpreter rule, if those are the only rules that MLB could come up with this season, they are more out of touch than I ever thought. There are so many other problems that are holding up the progression of the game in America to worry about the assistant hitting coach being in the dugout.

We have been for about five years that MLB continues to look into the use/expanded use of instant replay, but yet we continue to hear week after week during the season about blown close calls that could have been easily and quickly reversed with replay.

The NFL went through the same kind of issues with incorrect calls on close plays back in 1997. The NFL was able to implement an “experimental” system for the preseason in 1998 with full implementation in 1999. It only took 1 year to put in a replay system, yet we are waiting year after year for MLB to get their act together to modernize the game. This modernization of the NFL coincided with major increase in popularity of the game while baseball continue with their slow downward trend.  Most every other sport in the world uses some form of reply in their top tier professional league with the exception of soccer, but they are even investing in goal line technology. The young and middle aged people now a days know that these game are judged by the human element and that nobody is perfect, but if the technology exists to quickly correct the play/call, it should be used.

The main argument against instant replay from the anti-replay people is “The game is already running long, this will make the game run longer”. My reply to that is, the game is already being held up by the manager auguring the call, replay would take 2 minutes or less to correct the call which would be far less than the time the manger spends yelling at the umpire.

Another argument against instant reply is that “It will interrupt the flow of the game”. That is another weak comeback as the flow of the game has already been ruined when the player or manager is arguing the call.

Proponents of instant replay are not talking about stopping the game every five minutes to use instant replay. We are talking about 1-2 calls a game at most that need to be reviewed. Just give each manager 1 challenge per game just like in Little League. MLB seems like they would rather save 2 minutes during the game from not using replay and would rather receive negative publicity for 2 days on all the major sports cast shows.

People who are against replay do not truly care about the game and its future. They care about a past vision of the game, they are trying to hold onto something from their past and not look into the future. They want to remember the game for the black and white images that they see from time to time, but those images are in the past and can never be recaptured.

Another rule that needs to be changed is the DH rule between the two leagues. Most people want the DH to be used in both leagues, but personally I don’t care how MLB want to address the issue as long as the rule is consistent between the two leagues especially since there is an odd number of teams now in each league.

It is time for Bud Selig to step down as commissioner. The game has passed him by, he is dragging the progress of the game down while other sport continue their rise in popularity. It should not take to genius to make the needed rule changes in a quick manner to help the game.  He always says there are logistical and financial issues with these types of changes, but it has not stopped other sports from quickly put in similar major rule changes. If your focus is on the first to third move or how many people are in the dugout, the game has passed you by and you need to past the reigns to somebody else.

This will not be the last time you will hear me talk about MLB rules, instant replay or Bud Selig, as long as the game continues to fall behind other sports. All I can do is hope that someday baseball will wake up and listen to the fans as they walk away from the game.

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End of an Era for the Packers?

After the 45-31 loss Saturday to the San Francisco 49er’s, I came to the realization that what I was watching was the end of an era in Green Bay Packers football from the Super Bowl winning team in the 2010.

The way the NFL works now in the salary capped free agency era and the way players change teams, you have a 2-4 year window to win the Super Bowl before players either retire, sign bigger contacts or their skill diminishes below a useful capacity and are released. Also other teams start to figure out how these players skills which reduces their impact. After the 2-4 years have passed with no Super Bowl, the team can no long win the Super Bowl without an overhaul on the team. Since the early 90’s, this is how the NFL works.

I would like to to cite the example of the 1996 Green Bay Packers who won Super Bowl Super Bowl XXXI. During the lead up to the Super Bowl winning season the Packers were able to acquire or draft many key players in forming a championship winning team. But after the 1996 season the pieces to the puzzle started to go missing:

  • Keith Jackson retired
  • Edger Bennett got hurt in the 1997 preseason and never played for the Packers again
  • Andre Rison bolted for Kansas City
  • Desmond Howard bolted for Oakland, did return to Green Bay a couple of years later, but it was too late
  • Chris Jacke bolted for Pittsburgh, got hurt, then signed for Washington
  • Reggie White was plagued with injuries in the coming seasons and left Green Bay after the 1998 season.
  • Sean Jones final game was in the 1996 season
  • Eugene Robinson bolted for Atlanta after the 1997 season.
  • Coach Mike Holmgren left after the 1998 season for Seattle
  • OC Sherman Lewis left after the 1999 season
  • Andy Reid left after the 1998 season

All these key people left mainly after the Super Bowl loss to the Denver Broncos or the following season and until a whole new system was implemented, the Packers did win, but could not go all the way to the Super Bowl. Once all the players from the 1996 team era had left, we were able to succeed. Another example of this you are currently seeing this with is the Pittsburgh Steelers who last won the Super Bowl in 2008 and have now surpassed the 4 year window. They finished the last season 8-8.

Based on what I saw Saturday, this is it for Green Bay, major changes need to be made on Offense and Defense to turn over to another era. We are in need of:

  • TE
  • LT/RT
  • DT
  • LB
  • FS/SS

In addition to these changes, some defensive changes are needed after watching how we planned for Kaepernick. I even knew that this guy could run the ball going back to his college days, but we had nobody marking him all night. When this occurs, it is time for a change, not once we hit a 4-12 season, but now while we still have time.

All in all, it will be interesting how this off season will go for the Packers and what changes are made (or not made) and if the Packers are able to continue this streak of success, but I fear that last night was the end of an era and now we begin the slow decline to our final destination …. Failure.

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New kickoff rules and the insane

The other day the media was reporting on some of new proposals to make the NFL safer for the players in the game. The only thought that ran through my head was if there was gas leak in the NFL office’s.

The two ideas being talked about are eliminating kickoff or the wild 4th and 15 idea. I have similar opinions on the two options that were proposed…. They both suck.

These ideas are not about the so called “player safety” , but more about Roger Goodell trying to prevent another uprising in 30 years when former NFL players playing today would Sue since they can not remember why they are standing the bathroom. Players then and players then should have known inherently that bashing into each other has its side effects. Injuries are a part of the game and especially in light of the recent head injury developments, there should be no ignorance by players that what they do now will affect them later in life.

I also believe that Goodell is thinking long term when making these tougher “player safety” rules. If he can reduce the number of head injuries, then reduces the healthcare costs for NFL players after they have retired, therefore helping the NFL’s bottom line in the long term future. I have no proof of this, but the whole basis of the recent legal action is about head injuries.

Another angle I have thought about was that few to no star players ever play on special teams, especially on kickoffs, that eliminating kickoff also allows the elimination of players that generally only played special teams. This could reduce the additional costs that come with players that only play about 5 to 6 times a game. This increasing the revenue of each team is something I’m sure the NFL owners would not mind.

The game has become too technical, too many rules, to much for officials to process. The spirit of the game is lost, and if any of these new proposals go through in their current form or in a similar form, the game could decline, the excitement could diminish, fans might turn something else that peaks their interest and the NFL could lose the popularity they work so hard to achieve.

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NFL: Stuck in the Technicality’s

As has been reported many times before and by this time I’m sure everybody is sick of hearing about, there was an interesting play during the Texans-Lions game on Thursday which has everybody up in arms. The Lions head coach throwing the challenge flag when nullified the review that was sure to come from the replay both.

I wish I would have started this blog before this season, because we saw this exact same thing occur during a Packers preseason game in which McCarthy attempted to challenge a turnover and was penalized 15 yards and the play was not reviewed. This should have been a major wake up call to the NFL that this needs to be addressed before a real game was affected, like on Thursday. Then again, the NFL was not thinking when using replacement officials so why would they use logic in this case?

The sad thing is, there is nothing the NFL will do about this until the season has completed because they say it is too difficult to implement a rule change mid-season. This is not a hard change, let coaches challenge in the final 2 minutes + OT, turnovers and touchdowns in addition to the replay offical being able to stop the game.

In reality, we are slowly progressing towards a college like replay system in which the replay offical can review all plays. So I say, lets just end the insanity and next season move to a college replay system.

We are so stuck in the detail of the rules, we forgot the reason replay was brought back…. To get the call RIGHT. Instead replay is creating more issues rather than preventing them,

My prediction for the next big gaff in the replay system? Field Goal over the upright. Since reply can only be used to determine if the ball crossed over the crossbar on Field Goal, we will have a kick that is called good (or no good) and the officials will call the opposite.

We have not heard the end of issues with the rules around replay. So until next time…..

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NFL Tie Games: Nobody wins

Sunday we saw the rare feat of a tie game between the 49’ers and Rams after many missed opportunities. In the big four professional sports in America, only Football allows tie games in the regular season since the shootout rule was instituted in the NHL in 2005.

These ties zap the excitement out of what was a good game. It seems more and more that the NFL should go with a college football style of overtime. Fans really don’t care about the plays it takes to go 50-60 yards to get in Field Goal range, they care about scoring and declaring a winner to the game. The NFL should just put the ball on the 25 yard line, give each team one possession and give the fans what they really want, scoring.

Overtime rules should remain the same for playoff games since those games today can not end in a tie. It is now time for the Competition Committee to review the overtime rules and stop the ability for NFL games to end in a tie

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NFL in London? Think this one through

Another year, another game in London as New England played St. Louis and once again talk about putting a franchise overseas in London. This continues the thinking of expanding the game internationally for what the NFL thinks will make the sport an international game.

But one must think…. Is this the right move for the NFL? With the increased talk of player safety at all levels of the game along with some NFL teams having issues filling their home team stadium’s, would the game hold up in the international sporting world?

As with any team that struggles in any sport, teams have issues getting people to attend the home matches. Putting a team in London means you have to compete with the national sport Soccer (or as they say Football). Overall, with the law of diminishing returns as the NFL loses it uniqueness to the British fans, less people will attend the games over the years with 8 home games a year. If this NFL team does not have a winning record, that will drive more fans away and all that will remain is the empty seats along with some worn out players that have to travel 3,500 – 5,500 miles for all roads games stateside.

Along with the above issues, there is one other thing to consider. How do you get the fans to attend your London NFL team instead of the established London Soccer teams? While most Soccer games in England are played on Saturday, there are a few “Good” games for Sunday. Who are the fans going to really care about? NFL or EPL? London alone has many winning established teams including but not limited to:

  • Arsenal
  • Chelsea
  • Fulham
  • QPR (Well… Maybe not a good team, but they are in London)
  • Tottenham
  • West Ham United

You also have to compete with some of the established lower level teams that would further draw fans away:

  • Charlton
  • Crystal Palace
  • Milwall
  • Brentford
  • Leyton Orient

With these issues present, the NFL should really question putting a team in Europe especially since the NFL has already had one failed venture with NFL Europe. Take care of your teams at home first, then think outside your domestic boarders.

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