Liar , liar , pants on fire ….
Liar, liar, pants on fire
In recent years the NFL has really gone through so many pratfalls , many of them of their own making . Image problem , well let’s just say while idiot fans champion the popularity of the brand and sport , with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell , simply espousing the league’s ever increasing revenues , you simply have to wonder if the NFL does have a compassionate side. In conjunction with the NFLPA (Players’ Union) , the league’s handling of the issue for game based injuries , in particular the matter of CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy ) and other neurologically based disorders. For the better part of the past two decades, the well-chronicled issue has remained a hot topic debate. Now, in light with the ongoing stories of the bureaucratic mismanagement of the Veterans Administration (VA) and the calls for the firing of VA Secretary General Eric Shinseki .
(4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ wide receiver Mike Evans , center is seen here with team GM Jason Licht ,left, is also seen with team head coach Lovie Smith , far right . Evans provides a receiving threat that the team rarely possessed last season . AP Photo / Collin McMillan …..
The issues of the NFL and how they have dealt with the injuries of their retired veteran players and how the US military veterans are now treated by that governmental agency , does seem to bear a remarkable resemblance. Therein, lies the idiocy of the fans, who continue to make light of this topic with their inane comments, that the players themselves knew the risks when they first entered the NFL . Perhaps , if the league chose not to subvert a great deal of their own in-house research conducted by their own medical staff and researchers , this matter could have been handled with more authority and urgency . Instead, both Goodell and his predecessor Paul Tagliabue, hid behind a veil of secrecy, deceit and lies.
There are now several cases at various levels within the Justice System where the NFL is now a lead defendant in numerous civil suits brought by current and retired players. In recent days, former Miami Dolphins’ quarterback and Hall of Fame inductee Dan Marino, has added his name, to a suit , that seeks unspecified and punitive damages. That civil suit details what the player believes were actions, that sought have himself and many of his peers to be subjected to use painkillers and antidepressants , to remain on the field during a game. While I believe that there is a great deal of justification in the players taking this route, with a civil suit , I do believe that there that has been a great deal of hypocrisy on the part of the team owners , league hierarchy and specifically the Players Union , itself ! That body’s Executive Director DeMaurice Smith has proven to be no different from that of his predecessor the late Gene Upshaw in taking this matter with a great deal of urgency and actually doing something proactive. A settlement that in some circles was greeted with a great deal of derision , awarded 2,300 players $ 775 million , with a further $1 billion being set aside , for what Roger Goodell suggested would be in-depth research into the cause and effect of neurological disorders , suffered during an NFL game .
With their own prior research, the league and commissioner suggested, there was actually no cause and effect , with their being absolutely no connection between the issues in question. Now an about-face , and here we have the NFL seeking to show its compassionate side without any admission of guilt on their part. Meanwhile , the union with a vested interested in this issue ., has simply done little to benefit their retired veterans on the matter . As I alluded to earlier, the glaring similarities of the league’s actions and that of the VA and Barack Obama’s own handling of this issue, now shows why the NFL and government remains a damn farce , where they are simply lacking real leadership , much less leaders, who really can be viewed as individuals who have any credibility.
With further evidence about how much of a mess, this whole chapter has become , it is now being reported that Dan Marino will withdraw his name from the civil suit against the NFL . As to the reasons behind this change of heart does seem ambiguous and unclear, by the Dolphins’ legend. My belief behind this all, stems from the fact, Marino’s credibility will come into question. His private life remains in turmoil in spite of his act of contrition, after repeatedly denying he was the father of a child born to a former CBS female intern . An act, the quarterback suggests was completely out of character, which brought about some unwanted attention and a great deal of embarrassment for himself and his family.
The more this story remains in the spotlight, with no real conclusion in sight, the less credibility there remains within the NFL , its hierarchy , union and among the owners themselves . There has been way too much rhetoric coming from the league, along with the usual amount of pragmatism one would come to expect from a group of individuals, where greed remains the key and their being little compassion from anyone within the groups mentioned.
As this NFL off-season comes more into the spotlight, as teams prepare for the upcoming preseason and then their regular season schedules . A number of franchises have sought renegotiate deals or cut some players, from their rosters. Meanwhile, this season’s group of rookies have begun to acclimatize themselves with the rigors of the NFL at the professional level. Jadeveon Clowney , beyond all the hype has seen his teammate and defensive counterpart JJ Watt show to him that it will not be that easy to just simply step unto an NFL field and believe that an opponent will simply pay him homage and respect.
For Clowney, before he gain that respect , he will have to pay reverence to those before him and to many of the players he is likely to face over the course of this season . The Houston Texans are expecting a great deal out of the number one pick from the 2014 NFL Draft. A losers of fourteen consecutive games , once they entered their week three schedule of last season, it was easy to understand why the Texans fell apart at the seams under the coaching of Gary Kubiak and his coaching staff . The woes of the Houston Texan were well-chronicled, to the point where many wondered if the team and staff could actually dig themselves out of the hole created. At season’s end, their record of 2-14 was a true reflection of the Houston Texans and how bad this team was said to be.
Bill O’Brien, who succeeded Gary Kubiak , after his expected dismissal, will now look to resurrect the fortunes of this franchise , where there are not seen to be many major challengers to the Indianapolis Colts’ and their dominance of the AFC South in recent years. Houston’s regular season meetings with Andrew Luck and his teammates , should provide us with a great deal of evidence about the aspirations of the team. Those two regular season contests in week six and fifteen , may well be something , O’Brien can use as a gauge, about where the Texans will need to be, in order that they are considered a legitimate threat within the AFC this upcoming season.
The firing of Greg Schiano , as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the aftermath of another horrendous season by the franchise, in reality , was of no great surprise . Schiano’s brash demeanor, simply could not hide the fact, he was clearly out his depth as a head coach in the NFL . He brought absolutely no discipline to the team from a coaching standpoint and once again, the idiotic claims by Buccaneers’ fans, there was a sense of consistency to the Buccaneers , was nowhere to be seen , all season long. Beyond that, the franchise then had to the issues of their troubled former quarterback Josh Freeman , whose career with the franchise can be best characterized by saying it was simply one of abject failure. Indeed this organization has not had a quarterback with any great sureness in several years and that includes their Superbowl winning quarterback Brad Johnson , whose 2002 season was understated even with the Superbowl victory among his personal achievements.
Schiano’s firing and the Buccaneers’ decision not to extend the contract of GM Mark Dominik , has led to a new structural hierarchy within the front office . Jason Licht replaces Dominik and the return of a former Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ assistant Lovie Smith to claim the reins of Greg Schiano , begins a new chapter for the organization. Smith’s coaching philosophy is one of a defensive mindset , with the players being held accountable and where the opportunities that arise on offense are duly taken . With Greg Schiano , it was simply a hodgepodge of schemes , with no clear path about what was being achieved. . As damning an indictment as that statement appears to be , the truth cannot be overlooked and the Buccaneers in 2013, were one of the worst performing teams in the NFL , in a wide variety of areas. At no point in the season could one believe that this team was actually in with a chance of winning the NFC South , much less be viewed as a legitimate contenderwithin the NFC . This preseason, a number of dubious prognosticators are now suggesting that this might be the year that the Buccaneers actually turn things around. A few off-season acquisitions and a moderately average draft will not put this team in the driver’s seat within their division. If anything, the Buccaneers at best are likely , to be no better than the third or fourth best team within the NFC South and record within the conference was a clear reflection of who they are within the league as a whole last season.
I believe Lovie Smith brings a great deal more credibility to the role as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and he does a proven track record, unlike that of his predecessor . Granted , the issue of this organization I believe stems from the ongoing mindset of the Glazer family and where their intentions truly lay. Is it their ownership of the NFL franchise or the ownership of the far more successful ownership of their English Premiership (EPL) team Manchester United ? Within both entities, over the past six weeks we have seen some major upheavals . The firing of David Moyes as manager of the EPL giants after only a year, was welcomed in all circles because of David Moyes’ continued mishandling of team affairs and his level of incompetence . Certainly, United’s failure to win a domestic trophy and their poor showing in the UEFA Champions League played a part in his own downfall. Moyes’ successor , is the no-nonsense and highly regarded Dutchman Louis Van-Gaal , who is likely to be more demanding of his players, while taking more input from the members of his coaching staff and the team in general . Something, David Moyes was unaccustomed to doing throughout his entire tenure with Manchester United.
Away from the field of play, the recent death of Glazer family patriarch Malcolm Glazer, there has been renewed speculation that the family may well seek to sell one , if not both of their professional sporting interests. Tampa resident Eddie DeBartolo Jr , former owner of the San Francisco 49ers is known to be seeking a return to the NFL in some capacity. In the UK, the continued calls for the sale of United continues unabated, because of the lackluster showing of the team, but more so, because of the family’s incompetence in their ownership of the soccer club and then their placing the club with a mountain of debt , that still stands at unprecedented level . That figure in some circles, is being reported to be as high as $1 billion and as low as $600 million . The real issue, is whether or not this upcoming season, will the club fall in line with the UEFA mandate of the “Fair Play Act” , in meeting the financial requirements to be eligible for all UEFA sanctioned club competitions ? The financial windfall the Champions League provides, is something that the club counts on, beyond the revenue derived from the domestic competitions in the England of which the two most important are the Premiership and the FA Cup . Competitions where Manchester United have attained a great deal of success in recent years, as well as throughout their history.
Joel and Bryan Glazer have been emphatic, that neither Manchester United, nor the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be put up for sale, but I cannot help, but wonder , if their appetite has not been whetted by the recent $ 2 billion bid made by Steve Ballmer to buy the NBA’s beleaguered franchise the Los Angeles Clippers ? Pending, the league’s approval, that will be the highest price paid for an NBA franchise in league history. We also witnessed in 2013, the Los Angeles Dodgers being purchased for the seemingly unbelievable price of $2.156 billion . This sum, I believe in many ways, was forced upon the winning syndicate by the behind the scenes shenanigans of MLB Commissioner Bud Selig , in demanding that the sale not only take place , but his forcing his will upon the presiding judge in the US Bankruptcy Court, in the state of Delaware.
Far too often in recent years we have seen the Tampa Bay Buccaneers fail to live up to expectations and I do not believe that this season will be any different . A new coaching staff , rookies and the inexperience of second year starting quarterback Mike Glennon is a great deal to ask of a team , where last season in their old guise they simply fell apart at the seams .
If Glennon is not up to the task, the insertion of a durable veteran such as Josh McCown is by no means a guarantee of success for the Buccaneers. Their rivals within the NFC South , the Carolina Panthers, Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints are likely to be considerably better than they were in 2013 , by way of the NFL Draft and through their own off-season acquisitions . It is highly unlikely that Ron Rivera , Mike Smith and Sean Payton would have stood by and waited to see what was being done by the Buccaneers . But this has been the mindset of the moronic tendency of the print and television media within the Tampa Bay area, with their prognostications concerning the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ upcoming regular season . How many times, have they and the fans got those assessments wrong and would they be willing, to admit that fact ?
The Buccaneers’ draft class of Mike Evans , Jenkins Seferian , Charles Sims, Kadeem Edwards , Kevin Pamphile and Robert Herron are thought to be the players Lovie Smith believes will be able to complement his roster and be productive throughout the course of this upcoming season. Their preseason schedule should prove to be interesting , with their first contest being against the Jacksonville Jaguars, at Ever-Bank Field in Jacksonville , Florida on Friday 8th August , 2014. The remaining three exhibition games will be against the Miami Dolphins, Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins . The team’s first regular season contest will be a home game at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa against Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers , reigning NFC South champions. Tampa needs a sound regular season start and what better way than to obtain a win against a divisional rival , who this season has to be viewed as one of the favorites within the NFC .
I will say this, for Trent Baalke, as the general manager of the San Francisco 49ers as he has busy during the off-season, in acquiring players in such a creative way, while also trying to stay within the salary cap . Yet , his biggest accomplishment might well have been in succeeding to have Colin Kaepernick sign a five-year contract extension for a quarterback who if anything, has made the Niners, a team to watch for the foreseeable future . Kapernick now has the weapons to succeed , but the question remains , has he grown as a player, showing maturity, as well as the potential leadership qualities sought by head coach Jim Harbaugh ? These are the traits that will be genuinely sought by the Niners’ coaching staff and their fans as the team embarks on their preseason and regular season schedule. A postseason berth and the likelihood of a Superbowl appearance are the ambitions of the Niners , where Kaepernick, can seek to avenge the loss suffered at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens in 2013.
Your thoughts on the points raised within this article and how best do you believe that the NFL can best solve the ongoing legal issues that they are now embroiled in ?
Picture and slideshow details below .
(1) Hall of Fame quarterback , Dan Marino and now an NFL analyst with CBS , who at first signed on to be plaintiff in a legal suit against the NFL , concerning the league’s actions in forcing players to deliberately take painkillers and other prescriptive medications , that may well have caused unnecessary harm and other health issues. Marino has since withdrawn his name from the suit, but has not offered a full explanation as to the reasons , behind the change of heart. Getty Images / Paul Matthews …..
(2) NFLPA Executive DeMaurice Smith ,left. is seen here with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell . Smith has been extremely critical of Goodell and his handling of Indianapolis Colts’ owner Jim Irsay’s sobriety issues and the fact the owner has now received his second DUI in the past five seasons . It was widely known that Irsay’s issues were ongoing and that his dependency upon alcohol and wide variety of narcotics (cocaine, marijuana and Oxycontin). While his criticism may well be valid , Smith is not without blame as it relates to his own lack action concerning the issue of retired NFL veterans and their being unable to receive their rightful medical benefits. AP Photo / Glenn Mitchell ….
(3) The Houston Texans’ Jadeveon Clowney ,left, is seen here with the team’s General Manager Rick Smith as the player addresses the convened press at the Texans’ Reliant Stadium in Houston , Texas. Having signed his rookie contract , Clowney now becomes a part of a team that will be looking to revamp its reputation as one of the league’s worst performing defenses in 2013. AP Photo / Samantha Mitchell ….
(4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ GM Jason Licht , left, is seen here with the team’s number one first round draft pick , wide receiver , Mike Evans , center and team head coach Lovie Smith . The head coach and executive hope that Evans can provide a deep receiving threat they sought last season , but was rarely seen during last season , leading to the franchise having one of the worst offenses in the NFL in 2013 . AP Photo / Samantha Morton ……
(5) Buccaneers’ starting quarterback Mike Glennon (8) is seen here with teammate and seasoned veteran Josh McCown . Lovie Smith has emphasized that Glennon remains the starter but it is clear that McCown is there to challenge the second-year player for that position. AP Photo / Rick Barnes …
(6) Colin Kaepernick (7) is seen here with San Francisco 49ers’ head coach Jim Harbaugh . Kaepernick , already with back to back postseason appearances to his career as well as a Superbowl appearance now hopes to lead the franchise to another appearance in the NFL’s biggest showcase event of their postseason. Getty Images / Sam Harris …
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