The League

Archive: May 2009

Chiefs Poised for Comeback

The Chiefs could benefit from the weakness of the AFC West and a dramatic infusion of talent at the two most important skill positions on offense: Quarterback and running back. That should make them playoff contenders from the get-go.

By Peter Schaffer | May 29, 2009; 10:18 AM ET | Comments (1)

Dysfunction Saves Saints

It's entirely possible that Matt Ryan could hit a sophomore slump in Atlanta. That Jake Delhomme is capable of stinking up the joint like he did in that unsightly playoff loss. That Tampa Bay with a new head coach and yet another new quarterback could fall by the wayside. All of this points to the Saints returning to the playoffs after taking a year off.

By C.J. Holley | May 29, 2009; 10:13 AM ET | Comments (0)

Chiefs Could Do It

New Kansas City Chiefs coach Todd Haley has two huge advantages in his corner: He has a team that has added veteran leaders, and his Chiefs will be playing in what looks like the NFL's worst division. That could set up a playoff run.

By Doug Farrar | May 29, 2009; 9:22 AM ET | Comments (0)

Look Out for Buffalo

Right now the Bills should be comforted with the knowledge Owens has made the playoffs with each of his three previous teams and they could be the fourth.

By Gene Wang | May 29, 2009; 8:44 AM ET | Comments (3)

Continuity = Improvement

Tom Brady has the proper mix of talent, success, work ethic, humility and an ability to date super models, combined with a Hall of Fame coach and almost a complete veteran team. His own success, and that of his team, is all but a foregone conclusion.

By Peter Schaffer | May 28, 2009; 12:25 PM ET | Comments (1)

Scary? Yes. 16-0? No.

Yes, Brady should be able to lead an offense that piles up a ton of points, has opposing defensive coordinators reaching for the NoDoz and, one assumes, produces plenty of Patriots wins. But there's no way Brady and Co. run the regular-season table like they did two years ago.

By Desmond Bieler | May 28, 2009; 12:14 PM ET | Comments (1)

This Ain't 2007 Folks

Will the Patriots be good? Surely they will. If 2008 taught us anything, it's that Bill Belichick can still figure out how to adapt better than anyone else in the game. Can they be 2007-style perfect? Not a chance.

By Cameron Smith | May 28, 2009; 9:44 AM ET | Comments (0)

Good ... Not Great

Two years of rust coupled with everyone being, well, two years older will keep the New England Patriots from being the offensive juggernaut they were in their 18-1 march to not-quite immortality.

By C.J. Holley | May 28, 2009; 7:10 AM ET | Comments (1)

Super Bowl or Bust

There's no reason to think New England won't be right in the thick of the Super Bowl chase with Brady back in the fold.

By Gene Wang | May 28, 2009; 2:35 AM ET | Comments (0)

They May Be Even Better

I'm not too sure the Patriots offense can be better than it was in 2007, but I have little doubt that a healthy Brady will fly right back to the top of the heap. There are too many things in his favor.

By Doug Farrar | May 27, 2009; 11:26 PM ET | Comments (1)

With Brady, Team to Beat

Don't forget how good this team was in 2007.

By Mark Maske | May 27, 2009; 9:55 PM ET | Comments (0)

Fix the Rules

Instead of becoming more punitive, the league would do better to amend its rules to allow teams to pursue players about to become free agents as soon as the offseason begins.

By Gene Wang | May 26, 2009; 1:43 PM ET | Comments (0)

Crime, Penalties Stupid

I guess the reason why tampering is such a problem is because it starts a slippery slope. If it's ok the day before, then what stops it from being ok a week before, or a month before, or during the third Sunday of October. I don't get it.

By Dan Steinberg | May 26, 2009; 12:23 PM ET | Comments (0)

Tampering Impossible to Stop

Theoretically, the NFL should stop teams from tampering with players under contract with other clubs. In reality, however, without full disclosure of the conversations held, the league is going to have a difficult time proving when tampering actually occurs.

By Rob Rang | May 26, 2009; 11:26 AM ET | Comments (0)

Follow the NBA Role

For once, the NFL actually could learn something from another American professional sports league. And only the NBA has taken appropriately harsh measures to eliminate tampering from free agency.

By Cameron Smith | May 26, 2009; 11:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Time to Change the Rules

f you have a seven-day window that gives every team an equal shot at the best and most desirable free agents, and a team tries to sneak in a day early, that team should get the same kind of fine/draft loss the Patriots received for the Spygate scandal.

By Doug Farrar | May 26, 2009; 10:58 AM ET | Comments (0)

This Isn't Golf

Unlike many other major sports, football doesn't have many iconic venues left. If it did, perhaps the site of the Super Bowl would count for something.

By Gene Wang | May 22, 2009; 1:53 PM ET | Comments (2)

It's All About Branding

There's reason to believe that the NFL is changing how it views the Super Bowl, turning it from a way to reward loyal NFL cities in warm climates with a fat payout and a compelling carrot for cold weather cities to build new stadiums to a way for the league to broadly expand its larger fan clientele and, in one case, the markets where the league belongs.

By Cameron Smith | May 22, 2009; 6:38 AM ET | Comments (1)

Focus On Economy, Parity

Roger Goodell is certainly determined to make American Football the world's favorite sport, but taking the country's greatest sporting event and outsourcing it to places that see the game as a novelty cheapens the experience.

By Doug Farrar | May 22, 2009; 6:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

Not in Europe

The NFL, which has the best product in the world in my opinion, doesn't like being told "We're not interested." It's like, "Don't you people know who we are? We're the superior NFL!" The fact that nobody cares in most of the rest of the world is something the league just cannot accept.

By Kornheiser & Wilbon | May 22, 2009; 6:38 AM ET | Comments (1)

Who Cares, Just Win

Ultimately, the Super Bowl comes down to the show and the spectacle on television. Every other facet about the fun surrounding the Super Bowl is lost on a regular person sitting at home on their couch.

By C.J. Holley | May 22, 2009; 6:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

Vick Deserves Opportunity

What would it say about the priorities of the league if Vick is treated worse for killing dogs than another human being -- as in the case of Leonard Little or Donte Stallworth.

By Rob Rang | May 21, 2009; 4:08 PM ET | Comments (0)

Suspend, but Reinstate

Having Vick sit out the first eight games sounds about right.

By Desmond Bieler | May 20, 2009; 8:31 PM ET | Comments (3)

Building a New Image

Because of the vitriolic reaction to his dog fighting ring, and Vick's past, the NFL can't reinstate him ... yet. But they could soon, if Vick makes the right moves by working hard at his new construction job, proving that he can be a successful team player again.

By Gene Grabowski | May 20, 2009; 6:24 PM ET | Comments (0)

Who Even Wants Him?

Whether Michael Vick will be re-instated is actually irrelevant, because while he almost certainly will, a much greater issue is who should want him?

By Les Carpenter | May 20, 2009; 11:29 AM ET | Comments (6)

One Last Chance

The NFL should give Michael Vick a non-negotiable last chance to play football.

By Gene Wang | May 19, 2009; 3:55 PM ET | Comments (3)

Ban Vick for Life?

I see no reason why Goodell would ever let Michael Vick back under the lucrative NFL Shield.

By Emil Steiner | May 19, 2009; 10:29 AM ET | Comments (38)

The NFL Will Bend

The current Commissioner has proven that the need to fill the coffers trumps most everything else in his mind.

By Doug Farrar | May 19, 2009; 10:10 AM ET | Comments (3)

May 19 Winner: cohenra

Anybody who needs another "talking head" to break down a game that is sheer brutality masked as a sport is, as a wiser man than me would put it, "an idiot."

By TOP COMMENTER | May 19, 2009; 6:14 AM ET | Comments (1)

Who's the NFL Kidding?

Sports gambling, in the casinos in Vegas, online and on the street corner, is a part of the fabric of this country.

By Dan Levy | May 15, 2009; 8:38 AM ET | Comments (1)

Betting a Fine Line

The NFL needs to tacitly encourage wagering, while not officially endorsing it.

By David Carter | May 15, 2009; 6:40 AM ET | Comments (1)

Bet on It

Gambling, when properly regulated and controlled, is good for the NFL

By Peter Schaffer | May 15, 2009; 6:40 AM ET | Comments (1)

NFL Strikes Back

The NFL already has filed a legal brief with the state Supreme Court challenging the legalization.

By Mark Maske | May 15, 2009; 6:11 AM ET | Comments (0)

Passion of the Chin

His chin, his stare, his passion could motivate a winning season out of the Washington Generals.

By Emil Steiner | May 14, 2009; 12:04 PM ET | Comments (0)

Dont' Forget About JJ

Jimmy Johnson was the brains behind perhaps the greatest turnaround in NFL history, and that's why he's the most coveted retired coach.

By Gene Wang | May 13, 2009; 11:40 AM ET | Comments (1)

It Ain't Me, Babe

I would like to think I have the credentials to be on the list but at 72-years-old I just don't have the stamina to do it anymore.

By Dick Vermeil | May 13, 2009; 9:54 AM ET | Comments (0)

Holmgren Creates Greatness

If the most important position in the NFL is quarterback, the most coveted retired coach should be Mike Holmgren.

By Jeff Nelson | May 13, 2009; 9:13 AM ET | Comments (0)

New Game, New Rules

The NFL may be shifting away from the era of the high-priced, high profile coaches who may soon find themselves filling GM chairs.

By Doug Farrar | May 13, 2009; 8:52 AM ET | Comments (0)

Shanahan in Demand

With Jerry Jones and Daniel Snyder hot on his trail, Mike Shanahan will get the highest bid.

By Les Carpenter | May 13, 2009; 8:29 AM ET | Comments (0)

May 11th Winner: echovector

Seed the playoffs based on record. It's absurd that last year two teams with great records in tough divisions lost on the road to mediocre teams from lousy divisions.

By TOP COMMENTER | May 11, 2009; 6:32 PM ET | Comments (1)

No drama in OT

Let's take the anti- out of the climax of NFL overtimes.

By Jim McCormick | May 11, 2009; 2:09 PM ET | Comments (4)

The Right to Choose

Why not give the defense the option of moving back the ball or moving the chains forward?

By Gene Wang | May 11, 2009; 1:13 PM ET | Comments (1)

Bring Back the Ickey Shuffle

Let's get creative here NFL. Tie in a sponsorship deal with the TV networks to market the celebration.

By Dan Levy | May 11, 2009; 12:28 PM ET | Comments (3)

Too Much Pass Interference

Why not just have the college rule, where the penalty for DPI is either 15 yards from the line of scrimmage, or a spot foul for plays that are less than 15 yards.

By Doug Farrar | May 11, 2009; 12:10 PM ET | Comments (1)

Dump the Refs

If a $50 GPS can help fans find their way out of Fed Ex Field parking lot, why is the NFL still relying on Ed Hochuli's eyes?

By Emil Steiner | May 11, 2009; 11:56 AM ET | Comments (3)

Stress Can Be Good

Players and coaches should be more honest about the high level of stress in the game.

By Dr. Matthew Prowler | May 8, 2009; 4:43 PM ET | Comments (1)

Is This It For Favre?

Brett Favre's "last stand" and Manny Ramirez issues with performance-enhancing drugs.

By Kornheiser & Wilbon | May 8, 2009; 12:46 PM ET | Comments (0)

Little Reason to Believe

Another neat redemption narrative has been ruined by chemical analysis: Manny Ramírez tested positive for a banned substance.

By Sally Jenkins | May 8, 2009; 2:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

MLB Steps Up

Of course, if this were a linebacker in San Diego in the NFL, he'd just get a four-game suspension, make the Pro Bowl and everybody would shrug.

By Tom Boswell | May 7, 2009; 5:55 PM ET | Comments (4)

If a tree falls...

Shock and disgust has devolved into "so what?" and "who's next?"

By Jim McCormick | May 7, 2009; 2:56 PM ET | Comments (0)

Should We Be Surprised?

At this point, positive tests really don't affect my perception of sports at all - I had assumed for years that almost everyone in baseball was juicing.

By Doug Farrar | May 7, 2009; 2:10 PM ET | Comments (0)

Produce and It's Forgiven

These days, it seems fans are much more forgiving of a player embroiled in the steroids mess so long as he performs at a high level.

By Gene Wang | May 7, 2009; 1:48 PM ET | Comments (0)

Pity Jason Campbell

Campbell could well have the futures of as many as 10 men, along with their wives and children, riding on every pass.

By Les Carpenter | May 7, 2009; 12:54 PM ET | Comments (0)

Manning More Than Sanchez

The greatest pressure, however, falls upon Tony Romo and, to an even greater extent, New York's Eli Manning.

By Rob Rang | May 7, 2009; 12:27 PM ET | Comments (0)

Romo's On the Hook

With a new stadium, a non-stop reality show around him at all times the quarterback with the heaviest weight to carry is Tony Romo.

By Doug Farrar | May 7, 2009; 12:24 PM ET | Comments (1)

No More Excuses, Romo

Tony Romo better take Dallas deep into the playoffs or risk getting stamped the A-Rod of football.

By Gene Wang | May 7, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (1)

May 4 Winner: SPORTTC

He should do what he wants. If he still wants to play, then play. If not, then find something else. I believe that's how it used to work in this country.

By TOP COMMENTER | May 4, 2009; 11:42 PM ET | Comments (0)

A Helpless Hurt

We understand that the chief motivator here may just be love of the game. But we love the game too, and we don't want to see you trip in the outfield. Again.

By Jim McCormick | May 4, 2009; 1:29 PM ET | Comments (0)

"I'll Hold the Ball, and You Kick It!"

Hearing about Favre coming back to the NFL makes me feel like Charlie Brown being abused by Lucy.

By Doug Farrar | May 4, 2009; 11:29 AM ET | Comments (0)

Don't Board Viking Ship

Brett, for the sake of your legendary status in Green Bay, please don't turn the Lambeau Leap into the Metrodome Mount.

By Zach Leibowitz | May 4, 2009; 9:50 AM ET | Comments (2)

A Comeback in Non-Sequential Bills, Please

We've seen this show before. And each time we see it again it gets more predicable and that little part of us rooting for the robber wanes.

By Dan Levy | May 4, 2009; 9:40 AM ET | Comments (0)

Hamlet Worth the Drama

Let's all urge Favre to come back for the Vikings, so we can enjoy the best in reality TV.

By Gene Wang | May 4, 2009; 6:02 AM ET | Comments (3)

Let It Go, Brett

After all the hype and fanfare, Favre's comeback would not be poignant or heroic. It would be like "Rocky" ... "Rocky 6."

By Emil Steiner | May 4, 2009; 6:01 AM ET | Comments (5)

Lower Everything Prices

Fans can't afford the luxury of going to a football game anymore. And frankly, that's what sports is... a luxury.

By Dan Levy | May 1, 2009; 11:20 AM ET | Comments (6)

Fans Don't Count

Lower prices would be good for fans, but not for the league, teams, and players. Those three entities have more actual power than the fans.

By Doug Farrar | May 1, 2009; 11:16 AM ET | Comments (2)

Price Is Right

If the NFL reduces its prices it will actually have the opposite effect on the economy.

By Peter Schaffer | May 1, 2009; 11:10 AM ET | Comments (10)

 
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May 2009 Archives