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How do you handle this?

The distraction recent reports have caused are just another thing the defending Super Bowl champions don't need.

Very interesting story has blown up in the media the past couple of days. I am talking about the New Orléans Saints, currently America’s sweetheart team, allegedly covering up the theft of Vicodin from their medical room. Oh and just to be clear, if the accusations are true then it is considered covering up a felony. Those implicated in the lawsuit are three very high-ranking officials in the organization. The head coach, the assistant head coach and the general manager. Currently the situation is under investigation but that is not what interests me. What I am wondering is if, when this all plays out, will the league pass down any punishment and what might it be?

Roger Goodell has placed his stamp on the commissioner’s office through punishing those who tarnish the shield. Part of the job he probably does not enjoy but it is necessary. However, this usually consists of players that have put themselves in these situations. Even when the legal charges get dropped, like with the case of Ben Roethlisberger, there can still be some kind of punishment. Now, you have two coaches and a general manager implicated. Is this a case where they need to be punished as well?

If the commissioner does decide that there is warrant for a punishment, what kind of punishment should it be? I suppose that the two coaches could be suspended for a number of games just like players, but can you suspend a general manager from a game? I am sure that the men are first worried of being cleared of any wrongdoing and getting the suite to be dropped but it is something that has crossed my mind and I am sure others have thought of the same thing.

Categories: NFL

1st Prime Time Draft

April 26, 2010 Leave a comment

In the wake of the first prime time NFL draft, Roger Goodell must be very please with the new format. After a thirty percent viewership increase, it looks like prime time is here to stay. After taking a couple of days to digest the new process I have come up with some things that I like and I didn’t like about the prime time draft.

Just one more thing I like about the draft. Zachary Hatfield gets to announce his favorite team's pick. Zachary was given this opportunity through the Make-A-Wish Foundations. Hopefully he had a great time!

For reference the basic layout went like this:

1st round – Thursday, 7:30 P.M. ET

2nd and 3rd round – Friday, 6:30 P.M. ET

4th-7th round – Saturday, 10 A.M. ET

Likes:

  • The media had a full night to analyze team’s 1st round picks. Because only the first round was held on Thursday night this allowed for the media an entire evening to break down picks, play game footage, talk to coaches, and analyze how these rookies would help their new team
  • This year I can honestly say it was the first time that I gave my attention to the third round. In past years the first two rounds were held on one day and the rest of the draft the next. Most of the time this meant that I didn’t watch, or at least didn’t pay attention to, the third round of the draft because I was not as familiar with many of the subsequent picks. So I would just wait until my team’s draft was over and read about the picks on the team website and in expert’s analysis. This year with the third round of the draft on the same evening as the second I found myself actually watching and paying attention after the second round had ended.
  • Breaking it up into three days gives coaches more time and opportunities to reset their draft boards. I don’t know about everyone else but sometimes I really wonder what coaches and general managers are thinking when they make their decisions. I have always wondered how hard it must be to have to scout and draft so many players when it could very well be that those players are not there anymore. In these cases teams have to rearrange their draft boards. Teams get the best chance to do this at night between rounds. Now, instead of one chance, they get two.

Of course, everything that I like about the new format also are the same things that I didn’t like.

Dislike

  • Waiting a whole day between the first and second round is excruciating. There are still a lot of prominent players that go in the second round. There were a lot of players left that I was really interested in seeing where they went. But that wasn’t the worst part. I wanted to know who else my team was going to pick. Plus I am just thankful that my team had a first round pick. If I had to way until day two of the draft before my team picked, especially if it was because they traded out of the first round, I would go insane.
  • If you are like me, then you don’t get home until around 6 P.M. every day, even on the weekends. (If I am lucky that is) I live in the central standard time zone which means it begins at five and I get to miss an hour of the second round. People in time zones further east have to watch it even earlier in their day. I understand that the NFL wants to get both the 2nd and 3rd rounds in at a manageable time but that doesn’t mean it is not going to annoy me to the point where I complain about it on my blog!

With those reasons in mind I can say that if I was Roger Goodell I would privately think that none of those things matter. What matters is that there was a thirty percent increase in fans watching. That is

Categories: NFL

Vacation in the Cold?

April 7, 2010 1 comment

Before the whole McNabb to Washington media storm, there had been some discussion in the media over whether the Super Bowl should be held in cold weather venues. This comes about as the NFL considers awarding the new Jets/Giants stadium in New Jersey the 2014 Super Bowl. Remember that the game is in the winter, like this years was in February. Also that the stadium is not a dome but is open to the elements. Lets first consider the arguments against it, then those for it.

If taxpayers, many who will never enter the stadium, have to help shoulder the cost, then don't they deserve at least one Super Bowl in their City?

The main argument I have read against New Jersey hosting a Super Bowl has to do with fans who buy tickets to the game. Tickets for the Super Bowl can range from $1000 on up. So as some have suggested, who wants to pay thousands of dollars to go sit in the freezing cold with a possibility that it could be snowing. People come from all over the world, spend that much money and there is a chance that it could be miserable outside.

My thoughts on this is that we are talking about the SUPER BOWL. You know, the biggest game for a league that might as well just print its own money. Of course people will pay a ridiculous amount of money to got to it. If someone doesn’t want to there will be thousands lined up right behind them waiting for their chance at a ticket. I am pretty sure that the NFL could stop all advertisements for their league and still be the king of sports.

The next argument for the city is that the citizens of that city deserve to host it. One of the other big controversies in the NFL, and any other sports league, is the use of tax payer money to help build the stadium. That is everyone in the city has to help shoulder the cost. There is no way that everyone in the city will actually get to attend a game at the new stadium. Would anyone really want to look those people in the face and tell them no? “Oh I am very sorry but you can’t host the biggest sporting even in the country. It is just too cold here.” Thanks I will pass. Better yet I would just award them the 2014 Super Bowl.

Categories: NFL

Real over 3-D

As I was reading Andy Staples’ article over 3-D broadcasts in sports, I ran across a statement that got me thinking. He states “Sometime between five and 10 years from now, most of us will watch our sports in 3-D, and we’ll wonder why anyone bothers to actually attend the games.” Now Andy is not lobbying for or against watching in 3-D over going to the games. However, once a thought enters my head then I have to think it out. 

Already there are some definite advantages to watching football at home, it is more comfortable, better view, instant statistical updates, 

The first of ESPN's regular 3-D broadcasting will be a weekly broadcasts of a selected college football game

concessions are free and a refrigerator is just a few steps away. You get an up close look at all of the action for far cheaper than attending a game no matter what sport it is. The older you get makes these things all the more important.  Making the game more realistic on TV so the action jumps off the screen is going to make everything about staying at home even better. However, there is a definite downside as well. 

Attending the game lets you experience the people, pregame, intensity and tradition. You can take part in a rivalry, rush the field when your team provides a major upset, and sometimes even interact with the players. You tell someone that you watched that game on TV and it was amazing just to be out done when someone simply says well I was there. To be part of a crowed that drowns out a quarterback to help their team to victory. It is an aspect that all hard-core sports fans want to be a part of no matter what their age or how high they have to sit. 

In the end I would have to say that those people who would already watch the game home should definitely get a 3-D television. Still I doubt that it would impact all of the sports fans attending games. 

Below a link to Andy Staples’ article over 3-D broadcasts 

Categories: CFB, NFL

Problem Vs. Bigger Problems

February 23, 2010 Leave a comment

One of my favorite sports writers, Peter King, recently wrote about the controversy of starting and sitting players at the end of the regular season. The controversy really took off when the Colts sat some of their starters during the Jets game and, as many have stated it, handed the game to the Jets. The Jets went on a run into the playoffs, beating out other teams that had to play their games against starters. Peter King writes that the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell are very concerned about teams not starting their best players.

I can understand the problem that it creates and that there is an issue about the integrity of the game. So it will be interesting to see how the NFL handles this situation. I am against any form of rule aimed at forcing starters to play late in the season. There are three main reasons why:

1) The biggest issue would come when a team with a super star QB locks up their division but is forced to continue playing its starters. It is

Imagine Brett Favre going down with an injury due to a rule forcing to play starters late in the season.

a very real situation that a team, for example lets use the Vikings and Brett Favre is still playing, locks up their division and is playing a meaningless game against the Lions. During this game the unthinkable happens and Favre goes down with a season ending injury a week before the playoffs start. I can tell you one thing for certain, the angry fan reaction about starters not playing at the end of the season would be nothing compared to the mayhem that would ensue in Minnesota. I say by fixing one problem you open the door for a much larger problem.

2) I realize as a fan that everyone wants their team to have the same fair chance at winning it all as every other team. That was the reason that the NFL instituted revenue sharing. At the same time aura around NFL football is supposed to be one of greatness, toughness, and a drive to be the very best. This situation seems to be more like a well we should have taken care of our own business and if we had we would not be in this situation. However, because we are lets go ahead a whine about how unfair it was. Well it goes back to the old saying that many seem to forget these days: Life isn’t fair.

3) The last thing that would make it difficult to implement some kind of rule would be teams looking for loopholes to find away around the situation. One situation I can foresee is teams declaring players injured and having them benched. Teams would start accusing other teams of lying, so many players are actually injured at the end of the season that the NFL would have a difficult time proving anything. It just seems like an opportunity for  controversy to arise. If there is one thing Roger Goodell has shown during his tenure as commissioner its that he does not like controversy being affiliated with the NFL.

I would like to know your thoughts on the situation. Please let me know anything that I did not think of or possible solutions that did not occur to me. I look forward to reading them.

Categories: NFL