Figure It Out ……………

Figure It Out ……………

Well Monday Night Football brings us a conference and divisional —— matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins . For these two NFC East teams comes the first of two divisional games where the duo will look for dominance between both parties. Mike Shanahan as coach of this Redskins’ team is off a 2-0 start and one of the surprises of the season , albeit that the schedule is in its infancy. The Redskins’ coach seems to have this team playing with a great deal of resilience with the offense seem to be leading the way with the play of incumbent quarterback Rex Grossman taking the helm and leading by example .

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From my own standpoint this game should prove to be something of an eye opener as to the ambitions of both teams. Cowboys Stadium will play host to these two divisional rivals with team owner Jerry Jones still singing the praises of his $1.3 billion homage to ostentatious opulence , albeit that the Cowboys simply have struggled in the early part of their schedule , having lost a winnable game to the New York Jets inexplicably. For some reason Cowboys’ quarterback Tony Romo would like to have us believe that he should be seen as one of the elite players at the position within the league but fortunately for many of us we know that’s simply not true . And for the ever consuming idiot analysts within ESPN who continue to drool over the player’s alleged abilities my question for them is when will they simply wake up to the fact that Tony Romo is not an exceptional talent ? He may well be statistically the second most successful quarterback in the franchise’s history sitting behind Hall of Famer Roger Staubach . But that counts for nothing when you have yet to lead the Dallas Cowboys to successful run in the NFL postseason and therein lies the dilemma facing the Cowboys’ organization .

For Jones’ counterpart there’s the equally ambitious Dan Snyder whose millions seems to be limitless when it comes to spending money needlessly on overpriced talent . The Albert Haynesworth and Donovan McNabb experiments were a case in point where neither player were at all productive for the team last season .

Both the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins garnered themselves some highly regarded talent in this past NFL Draft and it seems to have paid dividends for the Cowboys and Redskins as both seek to complement their respective rosters. Jason Garrett having succeeded his predecessor Wade Phillips seems to have the Dallas Cowboys playing with a great deal of confidence but as I alluded to before the Achilles’ Heel for this team just happens to be Tony Romo.

Now while Romo has a litany of offensive weapons at his disposal with the likes of Dez Bryant , Miles Austin , Jason Witten , Felix Jones , DeMarco Murray and Tashard Choice the real problem has been the inconsistency of the Dallas Cowboys to close out a game decisively . If they are to succeed then it will be incumbent of Jason Garrett and the coaching staff to emphasize that to his players.

With what appears to be a renewed belief amongst the Washington Redskins’ fans as well as the front office of the organization it would appear that Mike Shanahan and his coaching staff led by his son Kyle Shanahan has this team playing with a great deal of resolve . Given the mindset of Dan Snyder and the very fact that he’s a mirror image of Monday night counterpart without the title of general manager . As much as Jones and Snyder are viewed as two of the more high profiled owners within the league it has been their mere presence with interjecting themselves in the day to day affairs of the respective franchises that they own which has led to the ongoing lack of success for both teams over the last decade. Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder may feel that as owners it is their right to dictate the terms under which their teams operate and what they expect their coaches to do . Unfortunately for both success has been fleeting and it would appear that both Jason Garrett and Mike Shanahan are in for an uphill battle if they are to succeed for their respective franchises.

Results they say can be misleading given the premise of the schedules set by the league . But I would susgest it all comes down to how the teams prepare themselves leading up to gameday . And clearly this seems to have worked out and favored the Washington Redskins but I would suggest that their season while in its infancy has yet to convince me that this team is capable of being considered a legitimate contender within the NFC for the Superbowl .

Rex Grossman for his part has shown why he was preferred over counterpart John Beck . And as good as both appear to be for this team it would very well lead to the Redskins struggling for much of the season . The long held belief that the game has passed Mike Shanahan by may well have been justified but that now seems to give us a moment to rethink mindset.

Monday night’s game could provide us with several clues as to the aspiration and direction of the Cowboys and Redskins . Both are proving that on both sides of the ball they are capable of showing playing at a reasonably high level . I am not convince that either the Dallas Cowboys or Washington Redskins are truly capable of being considered amongst the very best that the NFC has to offer by way of being the best teams the conference has offer much less win the Superbowl.

The NFL season while still in its infancy won’t give us a a clear indication as to an outright favorite as of yet but by week 9 or 10 we should be getting a much clear indication as to what lies ahead for the real contenders as they look to separate themselves from the pretenders . As to the coaches on the perceived ” hot seat “ we may well see a casualty . My own thought as to who are the likely candidates ………….. well you can count Norv Turner , Chan Gailey , Tony Sparano , Jack Del Rio and Tom Coughlin should he not be able to corral the New York Giants ——– lead them to at least the divisional round of the playoffs . Anything less , and I believe that the coach’s tenure in New York with this franchise will come to an abrupt end !

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What if anything has come as a complete surprise to you as the NFL embarks upon another season ? And do you believe that either the Dallas Cowboys or Washington Redskins are viable contenders within the NFC for the Superbowl ? Simply chime in with a thought as to this piece and anything else you believe to be pertinent .

Alan aka tophatal ………. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

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(1) Tony Romo (9) of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass against the San Francisco 49ers in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game at Candlestick Park on September 18, 2011 in San Francisco, California. The Cowboys won the game in overtime 27-24 . Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images ….

(2) Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) is sacked by New York Jets linebacker Calvin Pace (97) during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 11, 2011, in East Rutherford, N.J. AP Photo/Julio Cortez ……

(3) Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan watches the action in the first half of an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals in Landover, Md., Sunday, Sept. 18, 2011. Washington won 22-21. AP Photo/Nick Wass ……

(4) Quarterback Rex Grossman (8) of the Washington Redskins hands the ball off to running back Tim Hightower (25) during the first half against the Arizona Cardinals at FedExField on September 18, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images …….

(5) Two of the NFL’s more high profiled owners seen here at Fedex Field in Landover , Maryland . Dan Snyder (left) owner of the Washington Redskins is seen here with his Dallas Cowboys counterpart Jerry Jones prior to a game between their respective teams . Getty Images / Harry How …………….

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Oops Upside Your Head I Said Oops Upside Your Head !

Oops Upside Your Head I Said Oops Upside Your Head !

Well week one of the NFL season came about with a bang and in some cases something of a whimper given the rather morbid performances of some noted players. Anyone who witnessed the performance of Donovan McNabb in the Minnesota Vikings loss 24-17 to the San Diego Chargers . And though Chargers’ fans may well feel that they can take a great deal out this victory , in truth the team’s performance wasn’t really something to be desired . A seven point win but it was simply the woefully inept performance by Donovan McNabb that surely indicates that the player’s best years are behind him . Anyone who simply felt that McNabb would be the answer to the team’s woes has to be now rethinking that premise .

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From my own perspective , Zygi Wilf and the entire front office of Vikings clearly were sold a “bill of goods” in terms of the McNabb acquisition . As for Minnesota Vikings’ coach Leslie Frazier if he has pinned his hopes on the veteran quarterback leading this team to unprecedented heights then he clearly hasn’t learned anything in the aftermath of the Brett Favre fiasco under his predecessor Brad Childress and then last season with himself at the helm as coach of the team. And with the team’s quarterback Adrian Peterson having signed a multi year multi million contract this looks as if it could be a season of discontent for the Minnesota Vikings . McNabb’s stats from this season opener might just be the most anemic a performance of any quarterback in the league over the past five seasons . 7/15 , for 35 yards 0 TD’s and 0 INT’s and you have to wonder what happens next for the now beleaguered player. .

For those of you out there who are intrigued as to who Leslie Frazier may well choose to step into McNabb’s shoes . If not Joe Webb or Christian Ponder then you might as well say that the Vikings’ goose has been cooked . Without an adept quarterback to lead this team then there’s not a cat in hell’s chance of the Minnesota Vikings having a legitimate chance doing anything meaningful within the NFL this season .

From winning the AFC West last season and then garnering a postseason berth the Kansas City Chiefs had sought to improve on their showing last season . Todd Haley and his coaching staff along with quarterback Matt Cassel were looking to bolster their claims that they could be viewed as a legitimate contender within the AFC . Offseason acquisitions and a draft class thought to be the best amongst the teams within the conference and there might have been every reason to believe the claims made by the staff. Well if you have ever seen an anvil being dropped from a great height then the Chiefs’ 41-7 bludgeoning by the Buffalo Bills . If anything we can all attest to the fact that the Bills might well have been one of the worse performing teams in the NFL last season.

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Matt Ryan (46) of the Atlanta Falcons fumbles the ball against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Falcons 30-12 . Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images ……

In this game the Bills’ quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick had the type of performance that cast him as the second coming of Jim Kelly the Buffalo Bills’ Hall of Fame signal caller . There’s nothing to suggest that this Chiefs’ team possessed anything that was the equal of their conference opponents this past Sunday .

Care to suggest how the Kansas City Chiefs are likely to fare over the course the remainder of the season ? But simply base that thought upon the team’s woefully inept play against the Buffalo Bills . If you believe that the Chiefs are liable to improve then simply say “yes” , if not then obviously you’ll say ” no ” .

Mike Smith as coach of the Atlanta Falcons if he’s improve the goal of this organization . Smith over the past two seasons has seen gradual improvement not only in team’s play but also in the leadership qualities of his quarterback Matt Ryan . The player for his part is seen one of the bright young players at the position within the NFL . The Falcons for their part often regarded as a very good regular season team but come the postseason they simply floundered under the weight of great expectations .

In the Atlanta Falcons’ season opener against the Chicago Bears , wherein we saw an onslaught that the Falcons simply had no answer in a completely lopsided loss that not even most NFL fans would could have envisaged . Jay Cutler and his Bears’ teammates mauled the Atlanta Falcons 30-12 leaving the team in a complete daze. I have to admit that of all the games that took place this past weekend the result that I found to be the most surprising happened to be the lopsided defeat of the Atlanta Falcons .

One could surmise that the entrenched battle . between the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers and the absolute bloodbath in terms of the adversarial demeanor between these two heated NFC North foes had to be seen to be believed . Seven turnovers and a slew of mistakes by Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger amongst others on what is usually well disciplined Steelers’ team coached by Mike Tomlinson .

To suggest that anyone could have foreseen the Baltimore Ravens laying waste to the Pittsburgh Steelers 35-7 would simply be a complete lie . The margin of victory was one thing but for the Steelers to be so thoroughly outplayed had to have come as a complete surprise . Joe Flacco , Ray Rice , Terrell Suggs , Ray Lewis and Anquan Boldin simply had a day at the office that they could all be pleased with . And for Ravens’ coach John Harbaugh this might be just the evidence needed to suggest that gutting of the roster from last season and the subsequent offseason moves that coincided with the draft picks was a vindication for the Ravens’ front office and coaching staff that the decisions made were simply the right ones at the time.

It is pretty much safe to say that the NFC West might just be the least competitive of all the divisions in the NFL . Anyone of the belief who simply belief that a team that wins its division with a sub .500 record should be viewed as a team with a legitimate chance of winning the Superbowl must be either satisfied with that type of mediocrity or they simply view those teams as viable within the NFL .

Each season the more I simply take in the events of the NFC West it is the more I feel that the appropriate action to take would be get a paper bag and simply begin to regurgitate the food I may well have ate earlier ! To describe the football being played within the division as mediocre would be to describe a painting by Van Gogh as average . Simply put , it’s diatribe being served up on a silver platter for the fans’ edification , not that the NFL fans should be subjected to this over the complete NFL regular season schedule by the teams within that division. But that’s ….. c’est la vie !

The Seattle Seahawks’ Pete Carroll is amongst the highest paid NFL coaches in the league earning in excess of $7 million a year . Granted , team owner Paul Allen is amongst the wealthiest individuals on the planet but I’m sure that even he and GM John Schneider could have imagined wherein the team would simply have regressed rather than taking a step forward . I have never really thought Pete Carroll to be a very good NFL coach as his previous tenures has proven that coaching in the NFL isn’t within his wheelhouse . But this where the front office executives and team owners simply become at times too enamored with a college coach who’s said to have attained unprecedented success. Nick Saban and Steve Spurrier should have been a clear indication that ………. all that glitters isn’t clearly gold .

The Seahawks were hosted by the San Francisco 49ers this past weekend and the effort put forth by Pete Carroll’s team can be best described as being anemic and completely devoid of any aggression . Funny how a team who made the playoffs last season can now be looked upon as quite possibly one of the worst performing franchises in the NFL , on both sides of the ball. The Niners came away with the bragging rights in the divisional game clearly laying waste to their opponent 33-17 . With the loss of Matt Hasselbeck to the Tennessee Titans as a free agent somehow the coach felt that former Vikings’ quarterback Tarvaris Jackson could be seen as an adequate successor to the seasoned veteran . Given Jackson’s performance in that game I somehow think that Pete Carroll’s problems have now increased immeasurably ! The coach’s options at the position are not that great beyond Charlie Whitehurst and Josh Portis , so it is hard to view this team as a viable contender within the NFC much less the league as a whole .

It has to be said that there would be no doubt that the Indianapolis Colts would suffer this season with the long term loss of their celebrated quarterback Peyton Manning . You simply knew that this team wouldn’t be the same with his loss. GM Bill Polian and the front office may well have felt that acquiring seasoned veteran Kerry Collins would indeed make a difference but in reality the Colts are not a team that play on par with a nemesis when they simply haven’t got their best offensive weapon at the helm as the signal caller and in truth you cannot expect them to be .

Colts’ head coach Jim Caldwell and the coaching staff may well now have to keep the playbook simple for Collins and the team to have any semblance of success this season . Given the experience and the shock to the system of their season opener I am inclined to believe that the Indianapolis Colts are likely to struggle over the course of this year . The humiliating defeat the Colts suffered at the hands of the Houston Texans was enough to suggest that we might well be seeing the decline of a team who having the lost its leader has now become a rudderless vessel about to be capsized at sea. That 34-7 loss more than suggested how devoid of leadership this team becomes , without Peyton Manning but even more so , when you realize that there was no one willing to step up to the plate and assume the role as a leader . Say what you will , but if they are to fare well this season then someone has to be seen as the new leader on thus team .

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The NFL lockout may well have played its part in the rust we have seen from the teams in their performances in this first regular season scheduled game . But if anything it has to be said the coaches and their staffs had more than enough time to prepare their squads for expectations of what is always expected to be an arduous season . Simply put some of the teams in question may well have performed badly , much of it from their own doing and complete lack of preparation . If nothing else this could well be what we could very well expect over the next few games . But from my perspective these teams on the wrong side of these lopsided losses must have felt that they had been hit upside their heads ! What thoughts if any do you have from this first week of the NFL schedule ? Do you expect to see more of the same or could it be that this was merely a minor blip on the screen for many of the franchises in question ? Simply chime in with a comment as you deem fit .

Alan aka tophatal …….. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

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(1) SAN DIEGO, CA – SEPTEMBER 11: Donovan McNabb #5 of the Minnesota Vikings in the huddle with his teammates against the San Diego Chargers during their NFL Game on September 11, 2011 at Qualcomm Stadium in San DIego, California. Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images ….

(2) Donovan McNabb (5) of the Minnesota Vikings in action against the San Diego Chargers during their NFL Game on September 11, 2011 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images …….

(3) Adrian Peterson (28) of the Minnesota Vikings is tackled by Donald Butler (56) and Takeo Spikes (51) of the San Diego Chargers during their NFL Game on September 11, 2011 at Qualcomm Stadium in San DIego, California. Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images ……….

(4) Quarterback Matt Cassel (7) of the Kansas City Chiefs reacts after a turnover during the game against the Buffalo Bills at Arrowhead Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images …….

(5) Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) of the Buffalo Bills in action during the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images …..

(6) Matt Ryan (46) of the Atlanta Falcons fumbles the ball against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Falcons 30-12 . Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images ……

(7) John Abraham (55) #55 of the Atlanta Falcons sacks Jay Cutler (6) of the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Falcons 30-12. Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images ……

(8) Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) of the Pittsburgh Steelers scrambles while being pressured by defender Arthur Jones (97) of the Baltimore Ravens during second half of the season opener at M&T Bank Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images …….

(9) Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll walks the sidelines during their season opener against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on September 11, 2011 in San Francisco, California. Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images …….

(10) Tarvaris Jackson (7) of the Seattle Seahawks drops back to pass against the San Francisco 49ers in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game at Candlestick Park on September 11, 2011 in San Francisco, California. the 49ers won the game 33-17 . Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images ……

(11) Quarterback Kerry Collins (5) of the Indianapolis Colts is blind sighted by linebacker Mario Williams (90) of the Houston Texans on September 11, 2011 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. Texans won 34-7 . Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images …

(12) Head coach Gary Kubiak talks with quarterback Matt Schaub (8) of the Houston Texans during a time out against the Indianapolis Colts on September 11, 2011 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. Texans won 34 -7 .(Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images ……..

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Do The Bears Still Suck And Is A Roll of Charmin Really As Soft As We’re Led To Believe ?

Do The Bears Still Suck And Is A Roll of Charmin Really As Soft As We’re Led To Believe ?

There’s no denying that after Jay Cutler’s mea culpa in the postseason a great deal of questions arose about the player’s credibility and mindset . Chicago Bears’ fans and a number of his teammates sprung to the player’s defense in suggesting that the NFC Championship game loss to the Green Bay Packers and Cutler leaving the game simply wasn’t the prime reason for that defeat. I’ve long held the contention that Jay Cutler while being a good player simply isn’t a great player ! Well , not the player I think is capable of leading a team to a Superbowl victory !

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Jay Cutler’s talents are undeniable but there seems to be something lacking from within , as to what that might be I can’t be totally be sure . He may well have the arm to launch the ball 60 yards at the drop of a hat but that if anything is the primary flaw in his arsenal . That pass is just as liable to be intercepted by the opposing defense as it is to end up in the arms of one of his receivers . Head coach Lovie Smith a staunch supporter of his beleaguered Pro Bowl quarterback has even suggested that Cutler was the main reason for having a successful 2010 season. That in ofitself may well be true but few if any truly believed that the Chicago Bears would be deemed one of the best teams in the NFC last season . Granted , we saw a number of teams within the conference fall by the wayside due to inconsistency and in part more so through injuries but that becomes a mute point because isn’t that why teams have depth to their rosters ?

The challenge for the Chicago Bears isn’t one of not being good but simply playing well on a consistent basis and that to my mind has always been the knock against the team. You simply cannot trust the Chicago Bears to go out and play four consecutive quarters of high quality football much less two but yet somehow there are fans out there who believe that because of Jay Cutler , this team should now be viewed as a legitimate contender for the Superbowl ? Granted , the team now has a solid blend of veterans and youth with Brian Urlacher leading the charge . And it should be remembered it was Urlacher amongst the players who leapt to the quarterback’s defense when it was suggested that Cutler simply bailed on his teammates to hide from his own insecurities and somewhat lackadaisical performance during the NFC championship game. That asides , it once again all boiled down to the fact that this teams lacks resolve to close out a game when they have it within their grasp.

Head coach Lovie Smith’s philosophy has been to build his team around a miserly defense that allows the opposing team almost nothing. If anything that was taught to him by Tony Dungy from who he gained much of his knowledge as a coordinator , which he now puts to good use. But you should not discount the offense of the Chicago Bears where their primary running back Matt Forte can be counted on to be productive when given the means to do so. Certainly the Bears’ offense is more than capable of putting points on the board but with that also comes the expectations of wins , divisional titles , conference championships but most of all the Superbowl victory. And it is these expectations that cast a giant shadow over this whole organization and the fact that there are some who have questioned whether or not Lovie Smith is the right man for the job and above all whether or not Jay Cutler is the quarterback is the guy to lead this team to that ultimate goal.

Beyond Matt Forte the complementary pieces for the offense seem to be in place with Devin Hester , Johnny Knox , Chester Taylor , Earl Bennett and the newly acquired Marion Barber . And with the defensive presence of Brian Urlacher alongside Julius Peppers , Lance Briggs , Charles Tillman and Danieal Manning there is a belief that the team could very well be favored to do something special this upcoming season .

As I alluded to earlier if the Chicago Bears are to be successful then Jay Cutler to my mind will have to show me a great deal more than I witnesed last season and in particular after his performance in the NFC championship game . There are those who suggested that his injury was indeed far more serious than it was as first presumed to be. Others will detract from that by saying that the player simply opted to bail on his team when he realized he had nothing to offer. I’m of the opinion that it was little of both , Cutler was injured but I doubt injured enough to the point where it warranted him sitting out the vast majority of the game. It may well have sat well with some of his teammates on the day but I do believe that many of the Bears’ fans at Soldier Field saw an unacceptable side of a player whose maturity level isn’t where it needs to be. And as for Brian Urlacher’s assertion that Jay Cutler is a warrior , well we know that the defensive stalwart has been known to play through pain when his team needed him most . But this falsehood that he now lives under that his quarterback is a player he’d run through a wall for seems all so laughable given Urlacher’s own displays of courage and bravado on the field.

The NFC North apart from being home to the reigning Superbowl champions the Green Bay Packers also has residing there the Minnesota Vikings , Detroit Lions as well as the Chicago Bears . And for the respective coaches Mike McCarthy , Leslie Frazier , Jim Schwartz and Lovie Smith , they are all looking for their teams to acquit themselves well this year. I personally believe that of the cadre of coaches mentioned Smith may well be the one with the most to lose . If his team should fail to make the postseason at best then I certainly believe that in spite of the contract extension granted he could be shown the door by either team GM Jerry Angelo or Tim Ruskell the Head of Football Operations for the Bears’ organization. There can only be so much that the fans can be be subjected to and be asked to endure . To be repeatedly asked to witness a team come up short is not one of them and at this juncture it’s pretty safe that’s what the fans of the Chicago Bears have actually beared witness to.

The Minnesota Vikings have their own issues and with the team’s acquisition of Donovan McNabb it may arguably be seen as something of an upgrade from the quarterbacks on the team’s roster of last season. When one bears in mind that the throngs of Brett Favre fans were simply wiling their time away as the self aggrandizing veteran was showing his age , with his best days are so far behind him that it couldn’t be seen from a rear view mirror. Now the Vikings’ fans will be subjected to the travails of Donovon McNabb over the coming season . Let’s put this way McNabb didn’t help his cause any last season with a number of horrendous displays but at the same time one has to remember he was playing for the Washington Redskins which has Mike Shanahan as the head coach with his son , Kyle Shanahan as the offensive coordinator . There hasn’t been such an inept duo front and center e for the public to view since Ross Perot and Vice Admiral James Stockdale were running as independents , seeking to win the US Presidential election . The less said about that event and likewise with the Redskins’ 2010 season the better !

I believe that the Detroit Lions are still a work in progress but how much longer will the fans be patient with the often injured Matt Stafford ? I am not saying that he’s brittle but there are leukemia patients with more moxie and strength than the player is said to possess . Alas , the Lions will live and die by the play of their quarterback . For the Green Bay Packers it’s all about looking to make a successful defense of their title . Quiet in the offseason no doubt obviously due to the lockout the team stood pat not making any serious moves in looking to add to the roster . However , you can be sure that the team of last season along with their draftees will be looking to make some waves and show that their triumph of last season wasn’t an aberration. And Superbowl MVP Aaron Rodgers will most certainly be out to show that he’s now rightfully assumed the mantel once held by his predecessor Brett Favre . And for those who’d suggested that the team couldn’t win without the legendary quarterback ___ how’s that dose of crow tasting right about now ?

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What thoughts if any do you have with regard to the upcoming season for the Chicago Bears and in particular for their quarterback Jay Cutler ? And also do you see the Green Bay Packers quite possibly making a successful defense of their Superbowl title ? Chime in with any pertinent thoughts you might have on the points raised within this piece and as always thanks for the continued support !

Alan aka tophatal ….. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Contact tophatal @ rapptu@gmail.com

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(1) Chicago Bears wide receiver Devin Hester stretches during NFL football training camp Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …..

(2) Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, right, looks to a throw as offensive coordinator Mike Martz looks on during NFL football training camp Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh ……

(3) Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher watches his teammates practice during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(4) Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler wipes his face during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(5) Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith watches his team during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(6) Chicago Bears general manager Jerry Angelo watches his team during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(7) Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz, center, talks with quarterbacks Jay Cutler, left, and Caleb Hanie during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(8) Jan 23, 2011; Chicago, IL, USA; Green Bay Packers defensive tackle B.J. Raji (90) returns an interception for a touchdown past Chicago Bears quarterback Caleb Hanie (12) during the fourth quarter of the 2011 NFC championship game at Soldier Field. Rob Grabowski-US PRESSWIRE ……..

(9) Green Bay Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings (85) is tackled by Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher (54) during the first half of the NFC Championship NFL football game Sunday, Jan. 23, 2011, in Chicago. AP Photo/David J. Phillip ………

(10) Quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) of the Green Bay Packers dives into the corner of the endzone for a one-yard touchdown run against Danieal Manning (38) of the Chicago Bears in the first quarter of the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Getty Images / Jamie Squire ……..

(11) Quarterback Jay Cutler (6) of the Chicago Bears attempts to avoid a sack by Cullen Jenkins (77) of the Green Bay Packers in the first quarter of the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Getty Images North America / Jamie Squire ……
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We’re Back ………. !

We’re Back !

Well it appears all is back to the norm within the NFL with the lockout apparently ended , the league hierarchy, owners and union reaching an accord that allows for a decade of peace , goodwill amongst all the parties concerned . NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell comes off smelling of something but I’m not quite sure it’s of roses ! More in line with some form of fecal matter and the same could be said of the NFLPA as they now seek to re-certify and once again become a fully fledged union. I can’t help but wonder how the retired veterans feel about this all being that they were in essence shut out for the most part during the course of the deliberations. But ah well it simply takes the death of a number of aged NFL players before both the NFL and union actually show some form compassion as to their grievances all along !

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Now with many of the owners simply glad to have their teams back at work there’s a great deal of money to be made ! And made it will be by hook or by crook as they simply have done their best to portray themselves as the wronged party and the victim ! The players for their part are no doubt happy in particular union President Kevin Mawae who having retired from the league will leave his position as president once his term is over . Mawae along the union’s Executive Director DeMaurice Smith may well have gotten all that they wanted and perhaps a great deal more but now comes the hard part for a number of players returning back to the team facilities . The bloodletting is about to begin as coaches and general managers make the unkindest cut of all and that’s the shedding of talent they believe to be obsolete to their needs . Granted , there are a number of players who became free agents over the course of this four month standoff and it is to be expected many of them may well be resigned by their respective teams but in large the vast majority will be kicked to the curb. Let’s put it this way the carnage is about to become a feast and famine for some players.

In the midst of this all stand the agents who will be looking to secure the best possible deal for their clients . Drew Rosenhaus , Eugene Parker , Tom Condon who heads the Football division of sports agency CAA Sports , Mark Bartelstein and Leigh Steinberg will be handsomely rewarded for their endeavors , as too will some of their clients . Especially those thought to be amongst the marquee free agents thought to be the prime recipients of the contracts that will be on offer for their very special skillset. That being said there are bound to be several players who will be in receipt of contracts that simply do not measure up to the presumed expectations .

With there being varying rumors that the Washington Redskins’ much maligned quarterback Donovan McNabb said to be interested in leaving the team to ply his trade elsewhere and it should come as no surprise to anyone that the Minnesota Vikings are said to be interested in the player . Call me naive but after the Brett Favre debacle this past season why go down that road once again with McNabb whose best years are in his rear view mirror ? At the same time Redskins’ coach Mike Shanahan , himself , has been about as productive a coach in his tenure with the organization as the seated members of the 112th Congress since they returned to session after the midterm elections . And that’s saying a fu_king lot considering that they have not produced one meaningful piece of legislation over that entire period !

Now inasmuch I welcome the return of the NFL my problem with the whole scenario that now arises is seeing the number of teams simply shedding players in order to acquire replacements quite possibly cheaper or in some cases simply overpaying even if we’re led to believe it’s at market related prices . Somehow if Peyton Manning is on the way to becoming the league’s first salaried player at $20 million a season then for all sense and purpose the NFL hierarchy has simply lost their god damn mind ! Indianapolis Colts’ owner Jim Irsay , GM & Vice Chairman Bill Polian and the team’s coach Jim Caldwell may well feel that the player is well worth such a deal and the very fact that he’s coming off an offseason surgery I can’t say that such a decision would be a prudent one . But I think that it’s not necessarily the player determining this deal but more so the sway and power held by his agent Tom Condon who is amongst the most powerful men in all of sports .

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FILE – In this Feb. 6, 2010, file photo, Indianapolis Colts’ Peyton Manning, left, talks with then-offensive coordinator Tom Moore during practice in Davie, Fla,. The Jets have hired Moore as a consultant, according to a person familiar with the situation. Moore, credited for helping Manning develop into a four-time NFL MVP, will work during the season from his home in South Carolina, according to the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced the hiring. AP Photo/Eric Gay …..

It would be be remiss to suggest that the Colts won’t be amongst the contenders for the Superbowl this upcoming season . But until we see Manning in full flight , displaying his vast array of skills then many of us will be wondering whether or not the $20 million was actually worth it ! And as of now the jury is still out on the matter .

With all of the expectations coming this season it will be interesting to see how Cam Newton steers his way through the professional ranks of the NFL , given the fact that he was coddled for much of his career with Auburn . The Carolina Panthers coming off a disastrous 2010 schedule , great deal of discontent amongst the coaching staff and front office saw the departure of John Fox . Team owner Jerry Richardson and GM Marty Hurney brought in Fox’s successor Ron Rivera and an upheaval in the assistant coaching staff with a view turning things around for a team that posted a 2-14 record last season.

There’s not said to be a quarterback controversy brewing but I am sure that Jimmy Clausen knows that if he’s not able to prove himself worthy of the starting position then for all sense and purpose he will be spending the greater part of the season holding a clip board , showing his support for his teammates and Cam Newton , as the latter is given his baptism of fire within the NFL . The player has a great deal to prove not just to the fans in general but also to himself because if he fails to any signs of maturity and ability to play within the NFL then much of that perceived hype about him will be considered to be just that ………. nothing but hype !

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Picture gallery for your perusal and by clicking on an individual frame you can entity in its original formatted size .

It took four months of mayhem , madness for the NFL and union to reach an accord . Over the next 72 hours the events that will take place will make the league’s deliberations seem somewhat miniscule by comparison . Was it really all said to be worth it in the end ? The NFL at this juncture should be careful what it actually wished for because if this is what they had to do to reach a peaceful accord I would hate to think what they may well seek to do when they realize that their own perception of tranquility was nothing but a fairy tale !

With all of the upheaval that will now undoubtedly take place with the teams around the NFL how do you think that things will pan out for the franchises as they embark on the upcoming season ? Simply chime in with a comment .

Alan aka tophatal ……….. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Picture and slide show details below .
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(1) Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Donte’ Stallworth catches a pass during warmups before an NFL divisional playoff football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh, Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011. AP Photo/Keith Srakocic …..

(2) EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – NOVEMBER 21: Santonio Holmes (10) of the New York Jets scores a touchdown against the Houston Texans during the third quarter of their game on November 21, 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) …..

(3) Donovan McNabb (5) of the Washington Redskins passes the ball against the New York Giants apply pressure during their game on December 5, 2010 at The New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Jersey. According to reports July 27, 2011, there is an preliminary agreement in place for the Washington Redskins to trade McNabb to the Minnesota Vikings. Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images …….

(4) Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck (8) of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates after a score in the fourth quarter against the New Orleans Saints during the 2011 NFC wild-card playoff game at Qwest Field on January 8, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. According to reports July 28, 2011, Hasselbeck reached an agreement with the Titans for a multiyear contract. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) ……

(5) In this Sept. 2, 2010 file photo, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Tarvaris Jackson throws a pass during an NFL pre-season football game against the Denver Broncos in Minneapolis. A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Tuesday, July 26, 2011, that Jackson has agreed to terms with the Seattle Seahawks and is expected to sign a contract Friday. AP Photo/Andy King …….

(6) FILE – This Sept. 19, 2010, file photo shows Oakland Raiders cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha (21) at an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif. The challenge: taking more than 1,000 players and sorting them onto 32 rosters , working out contracts that must be signed and then processed by the league office , with every deal from rookies to free agents fitting under the salary cap and falling within the other boundaries of the new, still-being-understood labor agreement _ and getting all this done in time for the start of the preseason , preferably by the start of training camp. AP Photo/Paul Sakuma …. ………

(7) FILE – In this Feb. 6, 2010, file photo, Indianapolis Colts’ Peyton Manning, left, talks with then-offensive coordinator Tom Moore during practice in Davie, Fla.,. The Jets have hired Moore as a consultant, according to a person familiar with the situation. Moore, credited for helping Manning develop into a four-time NFL MVP, will work during the season from his home in South Carolina, according to the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced the hiring. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File …….

(8) NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 28: Cam Newton receives a hug from his mother Jackie on stage after he was round selected #1 overall by the Carolina Panthers during the 2011 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 28, 2011 in New York City. Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images …..

(9) Panthers’ GM Marty Hurney (left) is seen here with team owner Jerry Richardson and team president Danny Morrison , far right . AP Photo /Chuck Barton …..

(10) Former San Diego Chargers’ assistant Ron Rivera is introduced to the convened press as the Carolina Panthers new head coach by team owner Jerry Richardson . Charlotte Observer/ Jeff Shiner …..

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NFL News

Top NFL free agents thought to be amongst the most desired coming to the market

NFL transactions

Dumb , Dumber And Dumbest …………

Dumb , Dumber And Dumbest …………

Broke, devoid of creativity and ideas , I guess that could best describe the Congress , Senate and Barack Obama’s first two years in office and the performance of his Cabinet overall ! But no this piece isn’t about but that but the continued mediocrity of the Minnesota Vikings and in part that of the New York Knicks . But before I delve further into the sporting topic of the day I’d like to continue on the path of idiocy of the nation’s politics at present . Is anyone of the opinion that both the FAA ( Federal Aviation Administration) and Department of Transportation can be trusted to allay the fears of the public as it concerns air traffic safety when we’re being informed of air traffic controllers falling asleep in the control towers when there are flight departing arriving from the nation’s regional and major international departure airports ? Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says … ‘ the situation can no longer can be tolerated and that there will be much stricter enforcement as well as an adoption of new rules as it relates to working hours of the air traffic controllers on all shifts’ . Am I missing something here ? But in light of the volume of travellers that take to the air each year , that figure is approximately 500 million passengers flown domestically and internationally within US air space I find LaHood’s words of little comfort !

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As many of you may well have been aware several incidents have come to light in the past few weeks where there have been multiple mistakes due to fatigue and human error by air traffic controllers . Consider this also in a recent domestic travel of First Lady Michelle Obama’s flight into Andrews Air Force Base had a near miss with a military cargo transport plane as both were in close proximity of each other . The C 137 was less than three miles from that of the flight carrying the first lady which had to be delayed in its landing while allowing the military cargo transporter to land . Aviation rules call for planes of such size to be no more than no less than 5 miles apart when in flight and close proximity of each other during pre landing rules. This error concerning this incident wasn’t down to the military air traffic controllers but again due to the lax attitude shown by several controllers at a regional airport in Maryland who’d mistakenly allowed both planes into the same air traffic lane and space . Needless to say though there wasn’t a serious mishap the situation could have been much graver . Consider this also what might have been the domestic and international political fallout had the President been on board and Air Force One collided with that military transport plane ? Suffice to say that the country would be in turmoil and we’d be talking about this tragedy and questioning why it happened .

Given the season that the Minnesota Vikings had in 2010 and the ineptitude shown by the team with Brett Favre under the helm is it any wonder why that the team’s season flamed out the way that it did ? Having posted a mediocre 6-10 record within the NFC North any hopes that Brad Childress’ had of making the postseason before his abrupt firing went the way of Favre with a whimper . Childress was succeeded by Leslie Frazier but the team’s improvement as such can be best described as being marginal . With Favre being forced to sit out several games down the latter part of the season it was left to his backup Joe Webb to provide the team with any impetus that there was to be had .

In light of what Leslie Frazier and his coaching staff now has to work with in terms of the quarterbacks available to him on the Vikings’ roster , names such as Webb , Rhett Bomar , Tarvaris Jackson and Patrick Ramsey can either be viewed as journeymen or essentially players that can be relied upon to be good during practice but you simply wouldn’t want on an NFL field during a regular season game unless it was under dire circumstances . That being said if as is being rumored the Vikings front office led by Director of Player George Paton assisted by Rick Spielman are said to be seriously interested in seeing whether or not seasoned NFL veteran Donovan McNabb would indeed be a good fit for this team . Pardon me for saying this but McNabb’s best years are indeed behind him and even when he showed faint glimmers of his skillset at its best , it wasn’t as productive as one would have thought. OK, so he was playing on a Washington Redskins’ team that on a good day couldn’t sniff a out win in the NFL if they were handed a three touchdown lead with less than five minutes left in a game as they’d somehow find a way of fu_king things up , completely ! The fact that the team was coached by Mike Shanahan with his son Kyle as the Redskins’ offensive coordinator may well have a had a great deal to do with it . But in some respects much of the blame had to be laid at the feet of McNabb as well !

From my own perspective I think that Vikings’ owner Zygi Wilf is caught between a rock and a hard place knowing that this team greatly underachieved over the past two seasons , each time when the team was considered amongst the favorites for the Superbowl . Wilf’s will to win is only exceeded by the dire need for the Vikings’ organization to try and lure Minnesota State Legislature to pass a legislative proposal to pay for a new stadium for the organization replacing what Wilf and his co-executives feels is an archaic and out of date facility in the Metrodome (Mall of America Field) in Minneapolis , Minnesota. At an estimated cost of between $600- $800 million the proposed new venue for the team would be paid for largely in part through a bond issue and state funds at the state residents’ expense . Needless to say with the state now facing a budget deficit any such proposal within the legislature is now being placed on the backburner . Albeit that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and the league hierarchy could assist the Vikings in their endeavor by loaning them part of the costs to aid in the building of such a facility . But as of now the NFL lockout very much takes precedence over any such problems that the Vikings are said to facing on or off the field.

I can’t possibly see what advantage that there would in the Vikings acquiring McNabb as a free agent when they already have four quarterbacks on the team’s depth chart . But it either shows us that the Vikings are in such dire straits and the fact that Leslie Frazier has no implicit faith any of the quartertabcks on the roster. That being said Joe Webb was able to show that under the right set of circumstances that he’s quite capable of <l leading this team. But herein lies the caveat as it relates to the Vikings , as potent an offense as they’re said to have their defense had become porous and indeed an aging one that had showed signs of deterioration throughout much of last season . If the team is show signs of improvement this upcoming season should there be one then there choices will have to reflect bolstering their defensive line and looking via free agency to add any other pieces that they deem suitable to their needs . I certainly don’t believe that adding McNabb to this roster would make them any better given what I’ve seen from this team over the last two seasons !

The upcoming NFL Draft set to take commence on the 28th April , 2011 , being staged at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City , New York . And with the Vikings having the twelfth pick in the first round , eleventh pick in the second round (43rd overall) there’s bound to be an abundances of choices and picks that can be made I feel that can be envisaged being made by the Vikings organization ! I certainly don’t believe it prudent either for the team to take a quarterback in the first round no matter how good they’re presumed to be when it’s clear to see that the team’s immediate needs have more to do with its defense than anything else ! But whatever the choices that are to be made by the organization one can only presumed that it will be done in order to bolster their competitive needs and requirements .

So the New York Knicks are said to be relevant once again having made the postseason . And having to face the third seeded Boston Celtics , their task hasn’t now been made any easier with the fact that they now have to overcome a 2-0 deficit against the Celtics . That being said Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire have stepped up to the plate in leading the team into the postseason . But as good as this team is no doubt perceived to be , there remains flaws that coach Mike DAntoni has failed to address or quite possibly he and his coaching staff are actually too ignorant and unwilling to address . And that is the very fact that the Knicks simply cannot play any form of resolute defense . It has been one of the many flaws on this Knicks’ team that has and will ultimately need to their downfall should they not come to the conclusion that this situation needs to be addressed !

Throughout much of the regular season the New York Knicks struggled to make their presence felt . And even having made the playoffs as the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference you simply knew that they’d have their work cut out for them no matter which of the top four teams that they would have to face in the playoffs. If anything their 42-40 record reflected greatly where they sat in the pecking order of the Eastern Conference. Albeit that their fans undoubtedly feels that their record doesn’t justify their actually competitiveness as a team within the NBA . I do believe that most Knicks’ fans under the misapprehension that this team is far better than their regular season record reflects .

At this juncture when the series resumes at Madison Square Garden the Knicks will be hard pressed to not only try and derail Doc Rivers’ team but I believe that they would very well bow out of the first round of the playoffs in the most decisive of ways and that’s quite possibly being swept by the Boston Celtics . Game two saw the Celtics eke out a three point victory (96-93 ) even with the advent of with a 42 point offensive output coming from Carmelo Anthony who was ably assisted by Toney Douglas . But as I’ve alluded to earlier in this piece if you’re coach and his staff aren’t prepared to ingrain it into the players that they’ve got to play defense then you’re bound and will be doomed for failure !
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Game three and it’s all to play for and with that raucous home crowd to be found at MSG showing their support for the home team . One would expect for the Knicks to rise to the occasion with the fervent support of their fans . But I do know this , if they continue to allow the Celtics to dictate the pace and rhythm of this game and series then they will end up losing it all too decisively . They have to play defense and negate the perimeter shooting of Ray Allen and Paul Pierce in particular . And needless to say it’d also help if they were able to put a damn body on Rajon Rondo , rather than allowing him to continue to run wild being the architecture of much of the Celtics’ play and offense . I kind of get the impression that these minute details seems to have escaped not only the Knicks’ players but also their dumb and lame assed coaching staff ! .
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Picture gallery for your perusal .

To your mind do you believe that the Minnesota Vikings would be making an immense mistake in acquiring Donovan McNabb as a free agent at this point of his career ? Or do you believe that he can still offer the team something by way of his veteran leadership and in some form still be productive ? Moreover which of the quarterbacks on the Vikings squad is best equipped to lead this team should they not sign McNabb ? And what thoughts if any do you have on the outcome of the playoff series between the Boston Celtics and New York Knicks ? Simply leave a comments as to your thoughts on each of the topics raised within this piece .

Alan aka tophatal ……..

https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) U.S. President Barack Obama makes a statement in the Rose Garden of the White House regarding support for infrastructure development October 11, 2010 in Washington, DC. Obama was joined by members of his administration and members of local governments around the nation including (L-R) former Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (far right). Getty Images / Win McNamee ……….

(2) Obama Departs White House For Columbus Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (L) talks with U.S. President Barack Obama as they walk across the South Lawn before departing the White House aboard Marine One June 18, 2010 in Washington, DC. Obama is traveling to Columbus, Ohio, to mark the 10,000 road construction project paid for by the Recovery Act getting underway in downtown Columbus. Chip Smodevilla / Getty Images North America …….

(3) Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) is tackled by Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (90), linebacker Bobby Carpenter (59) and defensive tackle Corey Williams (99) during the first quarter of an NFL football game in Detroit, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011. The Lions would go on to defeat the Vikings 20-3 AP Photo/Carlos Osorio …….

(4) Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre (4) comes out of the tunnel before an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions in Detroit, Sunday , Jan. 2, 2011. AP Photo/Rick Osentoski ………

(5) Minnesota Vikings quarterback Joe Webb (14) looks downfield during the first quarter of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions in Detroit, Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) ……

(6) Donovan McNabb (5) of the Washington Redskins greets DeSean Jackson (10) of the Philadelphia Eagles prior to their game on October 3, 2010 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Jim McIsaac / Getty Images ……..

(7) Head Coach Mike Shanahan (R) of the Washington Redskins talks with his son Kyle Shanahan (L) offensive coordinator for the team during Redskins training camp on August 6, 2010 in Ashburn, Virginia. …

(8) In this photo taken Tuesdauy, April 19, 2011, Boston Celtics center Shaquille O’Neal , far left, whistles from the bench during the first quarter against the New York Knicks in Game 2 of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series in Boston. Celtics head coach Doc Rivers announced Wednesday, April 20, that O’Neal will miss his third straight playoff game with a right calf injury when they meet the Knicks on Friday night in Game 3. AP Photo/Elise Amendola ……….

(9) BOSTON, MA – APRIL 19: Ray Allen(20) of the Boston Celtics shoots a three point basket against the New York Knicks in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 19, 2011 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The Boston Celtics defeated the New York Knicks 96-93 Getty Images /Elsa Martinez ……..

(10) Carmelo Anthony(7) of the New York Knicks tries to shoot over Jermaine O’Neal (7) of the Boston Celtics in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 19, 2011 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The Boston Celtics defeated the New York Knicks 96-93. Getty Images/ Elsa Martinez ……

(11) Toney Douglas (23) of the New York Knicks tries to pass as Rajon Rondo(9) of the Boston Celtics defends in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 19, 2011 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The Boston Celtics defeated the New York Knicks 96-93. Elsa Martinez/ Getty Images ………

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Minnesota Vikings’ coaching staff

Minnesota Vikings’ 2011 Draft order

Minnesota Vikings 2011 schedule

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NBA Playoffs 2011

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Boston Celtics — vs New York Knicks’ playoff series

It’s Been DC Or Bust ……………….. But In Reality It Was Always Going To Be A Complete Bust …… !

It’s Been DC Or Bust ……………….. But In Reality It Was Always Going To Be A Complete Bust …… !

You’d have thought with a coaching pedigree acquired over the course of his career a two time winning Superbowl coach such as Mike Shanahan would prove to be decisive ? But what’s now happening with the Washington Redskins now under his reign is proving to be not only embarrassing to his immediate legacy but also to the tenure of owner Daniel Snyder . Consider this, that since the end of the second tenure of their former Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs the Redskins have been a complete mess . With their season now in a complete tailspin the organization are now at a point where it seems that Shanahan feels that it’s best to bench the team’s starting quarterback Donovan McNabb in favor of his backup Rex Grossman . And if Grossman’s reintroduction proves to be unsuccessful then it’s left to John Beck . From thereon in who the hell cares because as by then one seriously doubts that there’ll be a Redskins’ fan out there interested in this team !

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The coach in a public statement given at the team’s headquarters in Ashburn , Virginia , Shanahan stated that he’d like to see what Grossman and third string starter John Beck has to offer the team over ‘the final three games’ of the season. If that wasn’t enough to contend with the team still has to deal with the wayward and unrepentant Albert Haynesworth and his less than productive season . The player has been benched , suspended for the remainder of the season and fined for conduct detrimental to the team. Haynesworth , however has lodged a formal complaint with NFLPA with the intent of fighting the fine. And given the details and action taken by Shanahan and his coaching staff in coming to the decision there’s a chance that the suspension could very well be rescinded by an arbitrator.

Granted at 5-8 there’s little else to suggest that the Redskins have much to fight for beyond their pride . With a season of expectation from the hiring of Mike Shanahan , his son Kyle , coaching staff and Bruce Allen as the team’s general manager it’s pretty much now safe to say that those expectations have fallen completely flat. There’s been little to suggest that the Redskins were capable of contending in the NFC East and against the division’s incumbents the Dallas Cowboys , New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles . As we all know the Cowboys’ season has faltered and with owner Jerry Jones having since fired Wade Phillips with his interim successor Jason Garrett assuming the position the Cowboys are now gauging Garrett’s tenure with a view to making the position permanent. The Eagles and Giants will meet this weekend in a game that has divisional implications as they both fight to gain a playoff berth with the winner being in the driver’s seat with regard to winning the division.

The comedic nature of what’s been happening with the Redskins doesn’t seem to have gone unnoticed with the nation’s press and furthermore the fans in the nation’s capital have to be wondering what the hell is going on ? Fedex Field in Landover, Maryland still is awash with fans for the Redskins’ home games. But that in ofitself can’t counter Shanahan’s gross mismanagement of the team and the antics we have all witnessed this season. It’s now twice that Shanahan has benched McNabb this season and what might be even more unbelievable has been the fact that the organization signed veteran quarterback to a five year $72 million deal of which $45 million was guaranteed money. That being said with the way the deal was constructed the organization does have a $3.5 million buyout clause which it appears they will actually use in releasing Donovan McNabb at the end of season. Now it’s hard to say what the future holds for McNabb given the fact this has been the most unproductive season of his veteran career. It seems improbable that there’ll be a team willing to take a chance on McNabb but no doubt given the fact that there’ll be a number of teams out there looking for some time of veteran leadership if only as a tutor to a young rookie. Something of disastrous downfall for a player who has led his former team the Philadelphia Eagles to four NFC Championship games and a Superbowl (SBXXXIX ) appearance. The saying most associated with McNabb and Eagles’ coach Andy Reid ………. “always the bridesmaid never the bride” .

Once again for Daniel Snyder it comes to a situation where he’s overpaying for talent that in reality has been something of an immense failure. From my own perspective it appears that the game has left Mike Shanahan behind and his abilities as a coach has to now come into question. Consider this, while in final years as coach of the Denver Broncos having relieved then quarterback Jake Plummer in favor of their then first round draft pick (2006) Jay Cutler the Broncos never made the playoffs and the coach’s record over that period has been a meager 22-28 including his tenure this season with the Washington Redskins . One could say that much of that malaise came down to the fact that the Broncos talent wise has been a mess and that’s most certainly been the case given what we have all witnessed this season with the team under Shanahan’s successor Josh McDaniels who has since been fired by team owner Pat Bowlen . McDaniels has been succeeded by Eric Studesville as the interim head coach and as of now the Broncos’ season still remains in an abyss .

With the regular season about to come to an end it appears that Shanahan now believes this latest maneuver to be his best option. But it’s becoming abundantly clear that Shanahan has no belief in either Haynesworth which given the present circumstances is understandable. In the case of McNabb it’s hard to see what he was trying to achieve much less do in acquiring the player to begin with as there were always risks. Fundamentally the team wasn’t that sound to begin with on either side of the ball and it’s clear that Shanahan and his coaching staff have failed to address those issues straight off the bat. Kyle Shanahan who has been given the role as the team’s offensive coordinator has produced nothing that would indicate that the Redskins offensively were good enough to compete within its own division much less the conference and the NFL as a whole. The team’s productivity can be best described as being anemic in terms of its offense. And defensively it certainly leaves a great deal to be desired . Injuries asides the Redskins simply aren’t a cohesive unit and they lack leadership both on and off the field of play.

Now with the upcoming NFL Draft it’s clear that the Washington Redskins feel that their greatest need will be a quarterback . And with the likes of Andrew Luck , Kellen Moore , Cameron Newton , Colin Kapernick amongst those who may well declare themselves eligible for the NFL it will be interesting to see the steps taken by Shanahan and his staff. And given the money that Dan Snyder has been known to have spent over the years could it be that we’re about to see another maelstrom and inane stupidity by the Redskins ? The ongoing troubles with the the organization isn’t just about the talent but also the mindset of Shanahan as a coach and whether or not the game has really passed him by. I believe that to be the case but in reality Snyder and the front office clearly believe otherwise and it’s clear that the ongoing problems there in Washington has nothing short of being a bust and it will continue to be that way for the foreseeable future !.

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

Where do you see things going for the Redskins and what of the future of Donovan McNabb and where do you as such see him ending up if indeed he still has a future in the NFL ?

NB: This piece was completed prior to Sunday’s scheduled game against the Dallas Cowboys .

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😉 —- 😛

Alan aka tophatal ………………………………. 😉

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Eye candy ……… Tv reality star Deelishis’ a favorite of rap star Flava Flav’ on his eponymous reality show ‘Flavor of Love’ . Courtesy of XXL Magazine

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Deelishis

Someone needs to put a cork in that . What do you think ?

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Rick Ross …………‘Aston Martin Music’ feat’g Drake & Chrissette Michelle

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Nepotism Can Be A Double Edged Sword ….. That Bitch Can Cut Both Ways And It Hurts !

Nepotism Can Be A Double Edged Sword ….. That Bitch Can Cut Both Ways And It Hurts !

I don’t know about you but as a youngster I had no real interest in following of the footsteps of my father professionally. He worked for almost three decades in factory as a machine operator for a company that made office furniture. Not that there was anything wrong with that as a profession and the relationship between he and myself wasn’t one that was close to begin with. He left the family home recusing himself of all responsibilty of being a father first and then a man. But that asides he had his moments in the lives of myself and my two younger siblings , my brother and sister. Over the remaining years prior to his leaving the UK to return to the Caribbean our paths crossed but not always on the most amicable of terms.

As I grew up I simply knew that I had no intention of following in my father’s footsteps professionally as I sought to make my own way in the world. Having graduated from high school I joined the military and for the nex eight years I saw a great deal of Europe and North Africa serving in the British Royal Marines . Fulfilling my obligations there , I was lucky enough to be hired by large financial concern and over the next decade I spent working in the world of high finance. Along the way I was lucky enough to be the proud beneficiary of my employer’s in house educational program , wherein they paid for my entire college education. I put that education to good use in the world finance which was mutually beneficial for both parties at the time.

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Slide show for your perusal .

In the NFL rarely has it worked with great success where a father and son have achieved success at the highest order. Especially when it comes to the field of coaching albeit that we’ve seen where the likes of Buddy Ryan and Mike Shanahan have achieved a great deal of notoriety and success. In the case of Ryan he has seen his son Rex follow in his footsteps first becoming a coordinator before being entrusted to take over the helm of the New York Jets as their head coach. Kyle Shanahan eager to follow in his father’s foosteps also is now the offensive coordinator and assistant coach alongside his father Mike Shanahan with the Washington Redskins . Now one can surmise that it’s never easy to try and succeed much less outdo the acvhievements of one’s parents. But there is a case to be made that when that comes about a parent never ceases to be proud of that very moment and the fact of the matter is those moments are a lasting legacy of the very achievement itself.

Ryan in his first season with the Jets he got the team to the AFC championship game where they would fall short in their loss to the Indianapolis Colts with the result being a 30-17 defeat . This season within the AFC East the Jets are off to a 5-2 start and it would appear are comfortably placed to make the postseason . For all of the bravado comming from Ryan and his team and the belief that they’re capable of winning the Superbowl . There is a widespread belief that Rex Ryan is merely amping up the rhetoric and hype in order to deflect any attention and undue pressure upon the New York Jets. At times actions such as this can do more harm than good to his team . And within the cauldron that is New York City where the fans and press can merciless and unflattering , either Ryan will be able to put up or he’ll have to simply shut the hell up. This much we do know if he’s unable to guide this team to the promise land it won’t be long before the fans there in New York start to clamor for his head on a platter and his blood to be spilled all over the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford New Jersey. Granted, while this is a very talented Jets’ team there’s no denying that their humbling 9-0 loss at home to the Green Bay Packers having come off a bye week showed not only how unpredictable the NFL is but also that there’s way too much hype placed on a team that simply hasn’t achieved anything in the past three decades that is of any real note.

Often thought as one of the elite division of the of the NFL the NFC East has been anything but that this season . Mired in mediocrity for much of early half of the season I sincerely doubt that we’ll see a clear cut and dominant team within the conference as a whole. Many of the top tiered teams within the NFC as viewed by the press and tv analysts alike have performed like they’ve been hampered by some unseen obstacle. Based on what I’ve seen of the teams in question namely the Dallas Cowboys , Minnesota Vikings , New York Giants and New Orleans Saints a case can be made that hype , complacency and the mere fact that a number of these teams simply aren’t that good.

Redskins work out ex-Oakland QB JaMarcus Russell

Ashburn , Va. (AP) —Former Oakland Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell worked out with the Washington Redskins on Tuesday, just three days after Donovan McNabb was benched in the closing minutes of a loss to Detroit.

Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan said Russell was one of many players, including a few other quarterbacks, who were getting a look from the team.

“We’ll evaluate him and everyone else out there,” Shanahan said.

The Redskins routinely invite out-of-work players for workouts on Tuesdays, but the timing of Russell’s visit only added to the team’s quarterback drama of the last few days. McNabb’s benching raised questions about the six-time Pro Bowl player’s future with the team, and coach Mike Shanahan added to the confusion by offering varying explanations for the decision.

Russell, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 draft, was released in May after three disappointing seasons with the Raiders. He regressed on the field, was fined for being overweight and was criticized by the coaching staff for his work ethic.

Kyle Shanahan praised Russell’s talents, but said the other factors do come into consideration when evaluating a player.

“I don’t think you consider anyone just based off of talent,” Kyle Shanahan said. “Everyone in the NFL’s pretty talented. (It’s) other stuff that really separates you. He is very talented, so I think he can overcome some of the stuff that he struggled with. I don’t really know that personally, but if he looks like he’s in good shape out here and he’s working, and that’s all you can evaluate. Sometimes when guys do get a second opportunity, they can change their stripes.”

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We’ve seen the unraveling of the season for the Cowboys and Vikings and there’s a great possibility that one if not both teams will most certainly miss the playoffs . And who’s now prepared to lay odds that Brad Childress and Wade Phillips aren’t on the proverbial “hot seat” as far as their NFL coaching positions are concerned ? This is much is certain with the tumultuous maelstrom and storm said to be surrounding both organizations at present nothing short of divine intervention will actually save either Childress or Phillips by season’s end. Jerry Jones and Zygi Wilf are now backed into a corner and as owners, they have to be completely embarrassed by the very circumstances that their respective teams are now in. Unrest amongst the respective coaching staffs and what could amount to be a certain amount of dissention has effectively cacaded out of control. And while this has all been going on we’ve seen some rather asinine displays of immaturity being shown not only by some of the player on these respective team but also by the coaches. Childress has waived wide receiver Randy Moss after a mere four games played having acquired the player via a trade from the New England Patriots. And less we forget he still has to deal with the now injured “primadona” Brett Favre whose play this season has bordered on being mediocre at best. It’s obvious that the $20 million spent this year on Favre won’t be getting this piece of crap anywhere at all !

Jerry Jones has a dilemma on his hands does he jettison Wade Phillips now or at the end of the season ? In doing so, knowing that in hiring a coach and complementary staff there is a good chance that next season will see the possibility of a labor stoppage. Why waste paying upwards of between $8 million to $12 million needlessly when there’s said to be a great deal of uncertainty as to what next season holds ? A slumping team and what appears to be a lame duck coach and owner whose ego knows no boundaries. Could Hollywood have scripted this any better ? All that now awaits is the self combustion of Jones’ brain matter all over the executive suite of his office inside Cowboys Stadium . A fitting end no doubt to the Cowboys’ comical and disastrous season don’t you think ?

While I’m under no illusion as to how average the Washington Redskins are , at best , I do know that this team simply isn’t capable of playing with any degree of consistency throughout the season . Now we have the idiocy of the coach and his son , Mike and Kyle Shanahan trying making contrary statements as to the fitness and play of starting quarterback Donovan McNabb . Furthermore, given the deficiencies of the Washington Redskins at present I’d say that their worries over McNabb are being exaggerated and without basis. Their real concern ought to be how best get this team playing with a great deal more consistency. Now the duo are trying downplay their statements and in doing so they’ve made themselves a complete laughing stock and have no doubt loss the immediate respect of the player. If they now had these concerns then why trade for him in the first place ? Clearly Mike Shanahan and his son are either unsure of what they want or they simply now have misgivings and are too afraid to admit to the fact that they made a monumental mistake in aquiring the player. What might now be even more ludicrous is the fact that the team’s offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has brought in former NFL players JaMarcus Russell and J P Losman for quarterback tryouts. Is there a reclamation project now being put in place as they seek to perhaps replace McNabb ? Never mind the fact that the team has another “washout” in Rex Grossman as its backup . What are the Redskins’ fans to make of this latest turn of events ?

Given the mediocrity of the play now taking place within the NFC and specifically within the NFC East at present. We could very well see an 8-8 or 9-7 team make the playoffs this season from within the conference. How bad on appearance would that be ? No doubt what the fans have been served up within the conference would considered to be mediocre at best. But such are the vagaries of the game and the fact from week to week within the NFL one simply never knows what’s about to be served up next. It would be remiss to think that NFC is the only conference where the fans are getting a drab brand of football on display each week. As within the AFC at the lower rungs of the conference the teams there might be just as bad as those now in the middle and lower end of the NFC.

From my own perspective the mediocrity of the play this season isn’t merely about the teams but also about the apparent lack of real quality coaching and some of the asinine decisions that the fans have witnessed throughout much of the season as it has progressed. The remaining 8 weeks and the postseason has a great deal in store for the NFL fan and one would hope that it’ll be an improvement on what we’ve witnessed so far this season. As to the futures of Rex Ryan and Kyle Shanahan they will be judged by the decisions they make and the success achieved by their respective teams. This much I do know it’s clear at present given what’s going on they can’t really do much worse than many of the other head coaches around the NFL at present.

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What are your own feelings concerning the current situations that have befallen the Redskins, Cowboys and Vikings ? And do you feel that in the cases of Mike and Kyle Shanahan they’ve made themselves something of a laughing stock around the league and in the eyes of the fans ? And what are your thoughts concerning familial ties within the league and how it plays out concerning the individuals mentioned within this piece ? Simply chime in with a comment as you see fit .

NB List of NFL coaches including their 2010 record .

List of NFL teams’ coaching staffs including assistants .

NFL Week 9 schedule

Team with byes Broncos, Titans , Jaguars , Resdkins , Rams & 49ers

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😦

Alan aka tophatal …… 🙂

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Azzareya-Crystal-Curtis

Eye candy …….. Azzareya Crystal Curtis (left) & friends
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Sly & The Family Stone …… “Family Affair” (Remix)

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The Sporting Weekend That Was ……… Misfires And Positives ………..

The Sporting Weekend That Was ……… Misfires And Positives ………..

Well the MLB season has kicked off in full swing and oh yes , the baseball fans are simply now in heaven . Two things have caught my eye , the Yankees and Red Sox rivalry will be ‘as heated as ever’. And low and behold ESPN has made the announcement that former Arizona Diamondbacks and Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling will be joining their staff as an on air analyst for their pre-game and radio shows covering baseball. Now don’t get me wrong if ESPN feels that someone as opinionated as Schilling, is what they need to lure even more fans to watch their coverage . Then , so be it ! Schilling will also be providing live analysis , giving his undoubted experience and some might say in depth analysis of the game. I’m wondering if Curt will try to pass himself off as baseball’s answer to Charles Barkley ?

Schilling the entrepreneur .

Courtesy of Associated Press & Yahoo Sports

ESPN hires Curt Schilling as analyst

Bristol , Conn. (AP)—Curt Schilling has been hired by ESPN to work as a baseball analyst.

The network says that the former pitcher, who won World Series titles with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Boston Red Sox, will appear on “Baseball Tonight” and ESPN Radio, in addition to contributing to ESPNBoston.com and the company’s main Web site.

He will make his debut Sunday during ESPN’s pregame coverage of the big league opener between the Red Sox and the New York Yankees.

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Well it appears that the Donovan McNabb saga wasn’t going to be drawn out as the fiasco that’s now once again unfolding in Minnesota with Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings . The Eagles sent the Pro Bowler to the Washington Redskins for second round pick and a third or fourth round pick next year.

Donovan  McNabb  of  the  Philadelphia  Eagles.   The  player  was   traded  to  the  Washington  Redskins  a   divisional  rival     in the  NFC  East.   It  adds  to the  flavor  this   upcoming   season    when   the  player  meets  <u> his   'former   team' </u>.    photo appears  courtesy  of   Getty  Images/ Hugh  Malcolm ....................
Donovan McNabb of the Philadelphia Eagles. The player was traded to the Washington Redskins a divisional rival in the NFC East. It adds to the flavor this upcoming season when the player meets his 'former team' . photo appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Hugh Malcolm ....................

For the Eagles , their coach Andy Reid , GM & President Joe Banner this now becomes about the immediate future and the handing over of the reins to Kevin Kolb . And given the fact that the Eagles’ fans have never truly accepted McNabb and embraced him openly. I’m now wondering what they’ll make of the fact that the player has been traded to a divisional rival ? Will there be effigies of both Banner and Reid hanging outside the stadium should the team not fare well at all during the upcoming season ? Now call me naive but would it not have been far more advantageous for the organization to trade the player to another team outside the division (NFC East) ?

Mike Shanahan and team owner Daniel Snyder , they may well view this as their coup-de-gras in obtaining the Pro Bowl quarterback. And for Jason Campbell , he now must be left wondering as to what his immediate future may well be within the organization. My own opinion is that he’s no more or less , your rather average backup quarterback ! He simply can’t be entrusted to lead the Redskins with any great aplomb. Granted , he’s had to deal with the revolving door of coaches and offensive coordinators from his very first day with the team until now. And no player mentally or physically should really have to deal with such a situation. But this is simply what makes the Redskins one the NFL’s more comical organizations in terms of their managerial and executive structure .

Courtesy of The Washington Post

Washington Redskins’ trade for Donovan McNabb is a perfect fit

By Michael Wilbon , Sports Columnist

The only reservation in Donovan McNabb’s voice Sunday night was over finding and talking to Jason Campbell. After all, when things were going rotten for Campbell, when he was being benched and booed, it was McNabb, after an Eagles-Redskins game in Washington, who sought out Campbell to buck him up, tell him he’s got the tools to be a fine quarterback in the NFL. The quarterback fraternity is small, and the black quarterback fraternity is even smaller, and McNabb didn’t want Campbell to think for one second he’d been lying in the weeds for weeks, waiting to take his job.

McNabb, for the record, didn’t know until the last second where he was going to wind up. The rumors that the Vikings were atop his list were erroneous; McNabb told me that himself last week. The Raiders were a team that was interested, but not the only team. McNabb and I talked about the business of football the other night in Arizona, a totally off-the-record conversation. But I was reminded that night, with all due respect to Campbell, why McNabb is about the best fit around to be the quarterback of the Washington Redskins . . .

…Because Donovan McNabb has done most of it and seen all of it. Even on an evening when the Eagles, the only team he has played for, were trying to trade him, he was completely unfazed. We’re talking about an 11-year veteran who was booed by Eagles fans from the moment he was selected. He’s dealt with injury, the harshest criticism imaginable, idiot teammates such as Terrell Owens, roiled up locker rooms. He’s watched his team draft his replacement, taken the field with few if any Pro Bowl-caliber weapons. He’s shrugged off controversies involving race that were none of his doing. Yet, McNabb has always been able to speak his mind, keep his dignity and keep his team in Super Bowl contention.

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Click on link to read Michael Wilbon’s article in its entirety.
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Baylor's   Brittney  Griner  and   U Conn's  Maya  Moore  are  seen  here   during  the  women's   Final  Four   game   between the two  teams.  Geno  Auriemma's   Huskies  would   go  on  to  defeat  the  Baylor Lady  Bears    <u> 70-50</u>  in  the   game  played  at the  Alamodome in   San  Antonio  ,  Texas , Sunday  April 4th  2010.   photo appears  courtesy  of  Getty  Images/   Alicia  Mack  ...........
Baylor's Brittney Griner and U Conn's Maya Moore are seen here during the women's Final Four game between the two teams. Geno Auriemma's Huskies would go on to defeat the Baylor Lady Bears 70-50 in the game played at the Alamodome in San Antonio , Texas , Sunday April 4th 2010. photo appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Alicia Mack ...........

I’m not really hyped about women’s sports but I’ve caught a glimpse of one or two of the games in the women’s NCAA basketball tournament. And it’s now becoming clear that it’ll take a cataclysmic event to derail the U Conn Huskies as they “seek perfection” to end their season. All that now stands in the way of Geno Auriemma’s team are the women of Stanford . And as good as the Lady Cardinals appear to be , I do believe that they face an uphill task in trying to derail this Huskies’ team. Head coach Tara VanDerveer must either pray for divine intervention or that her team can catch lightning in a bottle and pull off the biggest upset ever to have taken place in women’s collegiate athletics. That’s the size of the task now facing the overwhelming underdogs in this contest , as they battle for the national championship.

Cleveland Browns nose tackle Shaun Rogers and his lawyer Patrick D'Angelo, center, talk to reporters after leaving Cleveland Police Headquarters where Rogers was charged with one felony count of carrying a concealed weapon on Friday, April 2, 2010, in Cleveland, Ohio. Rogers was arrested at Cleveland Hopkins International airport on Thursday after he tried to take a loaded handgun through airport security. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Jason Miller .....
Cleveland Browns nose tackle Shaun Rogers and his lawyer Patrick D'Angelo, center, talk to reporters after leaving Cleveland Police Headquarters where Rogers was charged with one felony count of carrying a concealed weapon on Friday, April 2, 2010, in Cleveland, Ohio. Rogers was arrested at Cleveland Hopkins International airport on Thursday after he tried to take a loaded handgun through airport security. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Jason Miller .....

Another week and “another dumb ass move” by an athlete ! It must be me but NFL players either believe that they’re impervious , invincible and above the law. Let me pose this question to you ? Knowing what you know, concerning the security measures carried out by the TSA (Transport & Security Administration) at all domestic airports , why in hell’s name would you want to carry a concealed weapon in your carry on luggage and then to board a domestic flight ? Cleveland Browns’ nose tackle Shaun Rogers pled not guilty to such a charge when he attempted to board a flight at Cleveland’s Hopkins International Airport , Cleveland ,Ohio. Rogers through his attorney Patrick D’Angelo pleaded not guilty to the charge but has already offered an apology to the fans and to the Browns’ organization . If found guilty he faces up to eighteen months in prison and a fine . The case should it go to trial would take place within the Cleveland Municipal Court and it is bound to not only to just add one more “black eye” to the image of the NFL but also to the entire Browns’ organization.

Courtesy of Associated Press & Yahoo Sports

Browns tackle pleads not guilty to gun charge

Cleveland (AP)—Cleveland Browns nose tackle Shaun Rogers(notes) has pleaded not guilty to a concealed weapons charge after authorities say he tried to carry a loaded handgun through airport security in a carry-on bag.

Rogers’ attorney Patrick D’Angelo says his client entered the plea Saturday in Cleveland Municipal Court. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in prison.

The 31-year-old apologized to his fans and his team Friday after spending a night in jail, saying he didn’t mean to take the gun into Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. Rogers told police he forgot the gun was in his bag when he attempted to fly to Texas on Thursday.

D’Angelo says Rogers planned to fly to Houston later Saturday to spend Easter with family and will make sure “to check everything.”

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One clearly now must wonder what President & Head of Football Operations Mike Holmgren must be thinking about the mess that he finds himself in , as to the ongoing problems of this team both on and off the field of play ? Never mind the fact that he also has to deal with an under achieving coach in Eric Mangini and his coaching staff . The task now facing Holmgren in turning this organization around is a daunting one . But when he has players who use poor judgment not only on the field but also off it. It kinds make you feel that they’re completely deserving of anything that’s thrown their way , and that it is of their own making. Rogers may well try and deny his culpability , in his poor lack of judgment in traveling with a concealed weapon. But given the fact he was about to board a domestic flight and whereby passengers are routinely checked. You have to simply wonder what mindset he had at the time ? It is bad enough that he plays on a woefully inept team but his decision making off the field, in some ways indicates many of the woes that the Browns now faces as an organization in terms of its on field personnel. Common sense doesn’t appear to be part of the equation there at all ! Well at least when it comes to the Cleveland Browns . Their fans might as well accept the fate that is now within their midst. Because in reality over the last decade , what we’ve seen from the Browns is a lesson in abject futility both on and off the field ! Shaun Rogers’ actions only further endorse and enhance the fact as to how bad things are there with the NFL franchise .

And it has been suggested that the addition of Jake Delhomme to the team will add some much needed resolve for the organization and make them a legitimate contender within the NFC North ? I’d somehow like to think so but being on the outside looking and seeing how the Browns fared last year. Any advances made to my mind will only be incremental . After-all we are talking about a team that could only muster 5 wins all of last season in going 5-11 within its ‘own division. A far cry from the expectations of the Browns’ fans and ownership .

Butler head coach Brad Stevens, left to right, Gordon Hayward and Ronald Nored smile during an interview session for the men's NCAA Final Four college basketball championship Sunday, April 4, 2010, in Indianapolis. The Butler Bulldogs will face Mike Krzyzewski's Duke Blue Devils in the championship game Monday night to be played at Lucas Oil Stadium , Indianapolis, Indiana. This in many ways will be very much a "home game" for the small and in-obtrusive college team from Indiana. The furor over over their improbable journey has resonated within the state and across the nation. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Mark J Terrill ...............

Butler head coach Brad Stevens , left to right, Gordon Hayward and Ronald Nored smile during an interview session for the men’s NCAA Final Four college basketball championship Sunday, April 4, 2010, in Indianapolis. The Butler Bulldogs will “face” Mike Krzyzewski’s Duke Blue Devils in the championship game Monday night to be played at Lucas Oil Stadium , Indianapolis, Indiana. This in many ways will be very much a “home game” for the small and in-obtrusive college team from Indiana. The furor over over their improbable journey has resonated within the state and across the nation. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Mark J Terrill ……………

Now as we all know the Butler Bulldogs have made it to the men’s national championship game in the NCAA Basketball Tournament . In tonight’s final, they’ll be taking on the ‘prohibitive favorites and three time national champions in the Duke Blue Devils . The thing I’d like to know is the fresh faced looking Brad Stevens , coach of this Butler team . Is he actually old enough to drink or vote ? He’s the only guy that I’ve seen during this tournament who actually looks younger than several of the players he’s coaching and many of the other collegiate players that have participated in the tournament for their respective teams. All kidding asides , even the team’s best player Gordon Hayward actually looks older than his coach . But that simply won’t mean anything once the two teams set foot on the court for the tip-off at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.

The “storied Duke program” will be taking on the unexpected finalists in a game of contrasting styles but nonetheless a game that will invoke and elicit a great deal thought and fan support across the country. No doubt a great many fans will be looking to cheer on the “hometown heroes” of Butler. While opposing fans will be looking to see if Duke’s coach, Mike Krzyzewski can add to “his already illustrious” career by winning his “fourth national title” as coach of the Blue Devils. This will be the main plot-line of what will be an epic match-up of “David versus Goliath” on what is college basketball’s grandest stage. Tonight we shall see if Butler in its role as David can take down the mighty Goliath , in form of Duke, in front of a national tv audience of millions , as well as the thousands who’ll be in attendance to cheer on the “local hometown heroes” . And hopefully this will be a game that lives up to all of the perceived hype and expectations.

Los Angeles, April 4th 2010. <strong> Manu Ginobil </strong> (20) of the San Antonio Spurs goes to the basket against Luke Walton (4) of the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on   Sunday.    The   San  Antonio   Spurs  would   go  on  to  defeat  the  Los  Angeles Lakers  <u> 100-81 </u>  in a  game   played  at  the Staples  Center  in  Los  Angeles, California. photo  appears  courtesy  of  NBAE/ Getty  Images/  Noah Grahame  ................
Los Angeles, April 4th 2010. Manu Ginobil (20) of the San Antonio Spurs goes to the basket against Luke Walton (4) of the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on Sunday. The San Antonio Spurs would go on to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers 100-81 in a game played at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. photo appears courtesy of NBAE/ Getty Images/ Noah Grahame ................

Well those have been my takes on this sporting weekend. I’m still on “cloud nine” having seen my beloved San Antonio Spurs lay the ‘wood’ to the Los Angeles Lakers in their lopsided victory 100-81 . And with Manu Ginobli essentially, outplaying even Kobe Byrant on the day, with a thoroughly engaging display of offensive prowess in scoring 32 points ,in leading the team to victory at the Staples Center , in Los Angeles, California. Needless to say, there’ll be those who will say that one shouldn’t put much store in “the result”. But I look at this way, a team wants consistency and rhythm as the NBA postseason beckons. ‘No teams’ wants to go limping in the opening rounds of the playoffs where the ‘slightest mistake’ can put ‘an end to your season’ before it’s even started . Hopefully , this will be a sign of things to come from the Spurs after this rather engaging display. It should serve as a warning that they’re not dead and buried as of yet ? Writing them off as of now and you’ll be doing so at your peril !

What sporting events that took place this weekend have you thinking “hits and misses” ? By all means chime on in with a comment. And I’ll look to responding to them each ,in the usual manner. As always thanks for the continued support , it is definitely appreciated !


Alan Parkins

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Mystikal …. “Boucin’ Back Bumpin’ Me Against The Wall ”

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Babes of The Day . In order to view each picture up close and personal just click an individual feature . Have fun while perusing these “pics”.
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Crap ! Say It Ain’t So ….. ?

Crap ! Say It Ain’t So …… ?

Well while the men’s NCAA basketball tournament has us all in awe and the suspense builds as the ‘Final Four’ is upon us. Life still goes on in the NFL and unfortunately the idiocy that is the Brett Favre spectacle still remains as the Minnesota Vikings awaits the player’s decision as to whether or not he’ll be making an imminent return to the game. Like we really care ?

2008  Heisman  Trophy  winner   Sam  Bradford.   The   player is widely  expected  to be  taken   number   one  overall  in  the   upcoming  NFL  Draft.   The  team  with  the   first  pick  are  the  NFC's   St  Louis  Rams .    photo  appears   courtesy  of  Associated   Press/  Chris   Rogers  ...........
2008 Heisman Trophy winner Sam Bradford. The player is widely expected to be taken number one overall in the upcoming NFL Draft. The team with the first pick are the NFC's St Louis Rams . photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Chris Rogers ...........

While much of this is now happening we’re close to pro days where several players will be exhibiting their skills for the general managers and coaches that’ll be in attendance. Also a number of teams will be bringing in a number of draftees personally for interviews . Amongst the players participating in this will be Oklahoma’s Sam Bradford . The Sooners’ quarterback is thought to be the desired choice of the St Louis Rams . The franchise will have the number one pick in the upcoming NFL Draft . And with Ndamokung Suh , Eric Berry , Russell Okung , Gerald McCoy and quite possibly Jimmy Claussen may well be amongst be the ‘first six picks’ taken in the draft, to commence on the 22nd April . It begs the question , will the teams, their coaching staff and general managers have done their jobs prudently ?

Personally , I don’t place a great deal in the draft geek’s in depth analysis of the players. Either these college players can take their game to the next level or they can’t . Now the situation as it arises , is one of making money in term of their draft position for the players in the first round. A drop off from being the first pick to midway in the first round can mean anywhere between $25-$30 million. The number one draft pick could be the recipient of as much as $30-million , as a signing bonus. But when one bears in mind this upcoming season in the NFL will be one that will not have a salary cap for the teams, since the NFL first adopted the salary cap in the early nineties.

The draft itself will take place from the 22nd April through to the 24th over the course of seven rounds , three odious and grueling days. Now call it what you will but I for one won’t be spending a great deal of time assessing the draft and what takes place. As I alluded to earlier my own thoughts are, can they play ? Because in this league if you’re found wanting , then it will be magnified greatly and there’s nowhere to hide if the talent isn’t there to begin with.

Eagles' quarterback    Donovan  McNabb.   The  player   is  said  to  want  to  remain  with  the  Eagles   but  it's  becoming  clear  that  he   will   be  traded  sooner   rather  than  later.   Eagles'  coach  Andy  Reid  and   team President   Joe  Banner  are   willing  to  listen  to  offers  for the Pro  Bowler.    photo  appears   courtesy  of  US  Presswire/ Jody Gomez  .............
Eagles' quarterback Donovan McNabb. The player is said to want to remain with the Eagles but it's becoming clear that he will be traded sooner rather than later. Eagles' coach Andy Reid and team President Joe Banner are willing to listen to offers for the Pro Bowler. photo appears courtesy of US Presswire/ Jody Gomez .............

There are now widely conflicting reports that the Oakland Raiders are the prohibitive favorites to land unsettled Philadelphia Eagles’ quarterback Donovan McNabb . The veteran Pro Bowl quarterback has been a fixture as the franchise’s signal caller for a decade. The possibility of him now moving to play for the Raiders can only mean that incumbent starter JaMarcus Russell’s days in Oakland as a starter have got to be numbered. Either that or the implicit faith that Al Davis has in the player is either waning or still there. The former LSU Tiger has been an immense disappointment to the coaching staff , the front office and in particular their long suffering fans who’ve had to witness the complete ineptitude shown by the led by Tom Cable and his staff. And to think that Raiders’ owner Al Davis is still revered within the NFL. ? I’ve got to wonder the irony of it all concerning the embarrassment to be found amongst the hapless Raiders !

Tebow (15)  left is  seen  here   alongside  his  former  college  coach   Urban  Meyer.   The   two  proved  to  be  very  sucessfule   as  a  team   combining to  win   two  national  titles   in  four  years.    photo  appears  courtesy of   boston.com/  articles ............
Tebow (15) left is seen here alongside his former college coach Urban Meyer. The two proved to be very sucessfule as a team combining to win two national titles in four years. photo appears courtesy of boston.com/ articles ............

Back again to the upcoming draft for one final time and the feeling is that Florida Gator quarterback Tim Tebow may well see his draft stock rise . Not just because of the apparent retooled delivery of his passing action but more so how the player has been conducting himself during the interview process with a number of NFL teams thus far. Now while the view is it has to be about the players’ performances during the drills and practices. Obviously how a player also performs during the interview process means a great deal and it bodes well for Tebow in showing his intelligence on and off the field of play. Do you think that former NFL player Ryan Leaf may have initially had that problem but it was overlooked firstly by the San Diego Chargers ? How fortuitous was it that the Indianapolis Colts didn’t take Leaf in the 1988 NFL Draft ?

DeMaurice Smith Executive Director of the NFLPA. Smith who assumed the position after the death of his predecessor Gene Upshaw. He was elected to the position by the board members of the Players' Association. Smith was a corporate litigation attorney for the DC law firm Patton Boggs. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Phillip Mitchell
DeMaurice Smith Executive Director of the NFLPA. Smith who assumed the position after the death of his predecessor Gene Upshaw. He was elected to the position by the board members of the Players' Association. Smith was a corporate litigation attorney for the DC law firm Patton Boggs. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Phillip Mitchell

The NFL makes sure that its season is now an all round one that is a constant reminder that to its fans as to how important the game really is. Business is business,as they say but more and more that business is all about making money . Everything else is just considered to be an afterthought .

I don’t know that I may have missed anything but how is it that the NFL still believes that it’s possible to still continue with the belief that playing a regular season game in the United Kingdom adds to the excitement of the game ? Never mind the fact that the league’s hierarchy envisages having a franchise at some time in the future placed in the city of London. Never mind the asinine notion that the city of Los Angeles still yearns for the return of the NFL. In what universe, given the fact that in order to facilitate that prospect any proposed relocation to the city would be at a cost to the taxpayers in the city ? And fans there are said to be yearning this all ? Now unless I’m mistaken I was under the impression that the residents in the greater Los Angeles area were bright and highly intelligent ? I guess I was wrong but then again look at the financial mess that the California State Legislature has placed itself in ? Could it be anymore asinine than it is at present ,given the nature of the state legislature and the apparent idiocy of the state’s governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger ?

Goodell speaks on the Vick incident. But need I remind you there’s a conduct policy that the commissioner can use to suspend a player for conduct detrimental to the game as agreed to in the collective bargaining agreement between the NFL (league) and the NFLPA (union). Someone should broach Goodell on the reasons why he’s yet to act concerning Roethlisberger given that the player’s conduct has also been detrimental to the sport . It’s taken him this long to meet with the player much less make a statement on the matter. But yet he has always stated he’s concerned with the image of the players and their behavior ? Unfortunately Goodell and DeMaurice Smith just keep on blowing hot smoke up everyone’s ass on the matter ! But that’s to be expected as they couldn’t give a sh_t to begin with !

The NFL for all of its proclivities it tends to forget about the fans and what they mean to the game as a whole . But it’s becoming even more apparent the fans are not thought of as an integral part of the game by the heirarchy , players and the union itself. Doubt that ? Ask yourself this what has either the NFLPA (union) or the NFL for that matter done to rein in the behavior of its members when they’ve ran amok and broken the law . It’s not as if they’ve proceeded to be proactive at a given time. Image to the NFL has been merely about looking good from one moment to the next and never about doing what’s right at the appropriate time. Somehow I think that present NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell , his predecessor Paul Tagliabue and Goodell’s union counterpart NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith simply don’t give a damn ! If they did, then it’d be more apparent in their actions whereby they would either be dealing with many of the problems that have arisen. I’d like to think that there would be a concerted effort by both parties either jointly or singularly to deal with many of the problems concerning the off the field behavior of the players !

Common sense within the game at present isn’t at a premium and unfortunately it just seems to be an ongoing thing across the landscape of sports in general. Crap , just say it ain’t so ?

Alan Parkins aka tophatal ………………….

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Nappy Roots …………. “Po’ Folks”

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Adult  entertainment   star   and  actress   Tera  Patrick  .    Wonder  what  she   does  when   she's   got  some  down  time on  her  hands    as  they  say  ?
Adult entertainment star and actress Tera Patrick . Wonder what she does when she's got some down time on her hands as they say ?

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Time Is On My Side Yes It Is …………Time Is On My Side ………. Oh Really ?

Time Is On My Side Yes It Is …………Time Is On My Side ………. Oh Really ?

For me one of the biggest disappointments of the NFL postseason, was to see the Philadelphia Eagles go down in a whimper without so much as a ‘bang’ against what appears to be a redemption seeking Dallas Cowboys’ team led by their quarterback, Tony Romo.

Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid addresses the media during a news conference at the team's NFL football training facility in Philadelphia, Monday, Jan. 11, 2010.  picture appears courtesy  of  ap/photo/ Matt Rourke .......
Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid addresses the media during a news conference at the team's NFL football training facility in Philadelphia, Monday, Jan. 11, 2010. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Matt Rourke .......

And while the Cowboys go on to the divisional round of the playoffs, where they’ll next meet the Minnesota Vikings for the right to a berth in the ‘NFC championship game’. The Eagles will be left at home, sitting and pondering as to what might’ve been and why their postseason aspirations inexplicably went up in smoke. With the defending Superbowl champions, the Pittsburgh Steelers having not even made the playoffs. The state of Pennsylvania and ‘its ravenous NFL fans’ are without either of their NFL representatives in the latter stages of the playoffs. Talk about tough , well let’s just say stark and dank times have hit the state sport’s wise, just as much as the demise of the ‘steel industry’. Stop bitching and whining those in the state of Michigan , other than the Red Wings and the ‘Wolverines’ and ‘Spartans’ , there’s not much to speak off when it comes to sports in the state of Michigan. I mean for God’s sake you’ve still got the Detroit Lions trying to eke out a living as an NFL franchise. If it were a race horse it would’ve been euthanized long ago ! And the Detroit Pistons of the NBA , has shown about as much athleticism and competitiveness as Clay Aiken and Adam Lambert combined, were they being recruited by the US Marine Corps. Yes sir, these are dark times indeed for the states of Michigan and Pennsylvania when it comes to sports on various fronts. That’s unless one counts the resurgence of the Phillies in Major League Baseball (MLB) as something to be proud of ? Well there you have it.

Arlington , Tx,. Quarterback Tony Romo (#9) of the Dallas Cowboys greets Donovan McNabb (#5) of the Philadelphia Eagles after a 34-14 win during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas.  picture appears  courtesy of  Getty Images/ Ronald  Martinez .................
Arlington , Tx,. Quarterback Tony Romo (#9) of the Dallas Cowboys greets Donovan McNabb (#5) of the Philadelphia Eagles after a 34-14 win during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Ronald Martinez .................

Courtesy of The Philadelphia Daily News

Donovan’s brain

By Michael Smerconish , of the Philadelphia Daily News

Everyone has an opinion about Donovan McNabb, including me. I say bring him back, but with a qualifier. He needs to see a shrink. Because my armchair analysis tells me that what ails him is in his head.

He’s the Sybil of the NFL.

The only thing consistent about McNabb is his inconsistency. On the field, it’s been well-documented. Flashes of greatness followed by depths of despair. A week of Hall of Fame-quality play and then an afternoon of utter offensive collapse.

It’s the same off the field.

There’s the McNabb who played the air guitar and banged the plexiglass while making an entrance at Cowboys Stadium. And the McNabb who sinks into an emotionless stupor on the sidelines.

The McNabb who cracks a nervous smile after a poor throw or a bad play. And the McNabb who is professorial during the postgame press conference.

Like an actor, he seems always “on.” We watch back-to-back subpar performances against the hated Cowboys to end the season.
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Linebacker Bradie James (#56) of the Dallas Cowboys recovers a fumble by the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears courtesy  of Getty Images / Ronald Martinez ..................
Linebacker Bradie James (#56) of the Dallas Cowboys recovers a fumble by the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images / Ronald Martinez ..................

With the dust having settled within Philly, it appears that everyone and anyone is looking to apportion blame on someone for the franchise’s lackluster performance in the first round loss to the Cowboys. Having lost to them embarrassingly twice, during the regular season. The thought was that ‘the team’ would be able to at least redeem themselves in the playoff game. Instead, it was another altogether lopsided loss and where the only respite may well have been the play of Eagles’ wide receiver Jeremy Maclin. Everyone else it appears , may well have been asleep at the wheel including the entire coaching staff of head coach, Andy Reid.

Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Joe Mays, left, sits on the bench during the closing minutes of an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Eagles 34-14. picture  appears   courtesy  of  ap/photo/  David J Phillips ......
Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Joe Mays, left, sits on the bench during the closing minutes of an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Eagles 34-14. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ David J Phillips ......

Courtesy of NFL.com in conjunction with the Associated Press

Reid’s call: McNabb ‘a great player,’ will be an Eagle next season

Philadelphia — No. 5 will return to the Eagles for a 12th season.

Eagles coach Andy Reid squelched speculation about Donovan McNabb’s future, saying Monday that the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback will be back with the team next season.

“That’s my call,” Reid said. “I think he’s a great player. His work over the last 11 years has proven that. I truly believe it’s a team sport; it’s not one guy.”

McNabb’s status was questioned because he has one year left on his contract and he has failed to lead Philadelphia to a Super Bowl victory in 11 seasons. McNabb has led the Eagles to five NFC title games — going 1-4 — and one Super Bowl appearance.

McNabb had one of his finest seasons in 2009, but he struggled badly in consecutive losses to Dallas. The Cowboys beat the Eagles 34-14 on Saturday night in an NFC wild-card playoff game.

After the loss, McNabb said he wanted to return to Philadelphia. He also said he’s open to discussing a contract extension. The Eagles reworked the final two years of McNabb’s deal last summer, giving him a $5.3 million raise. That would seem to make it unlikely they would extend his contract beyond 2010.

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Tony Romo (#9 )of the Dallas Cowboys pitches the ball in the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium. picture appears courtesy of  Getty Images/ Jamie Squire  ...........
Tony Romo (#9 )of the Dallas Cowboys pitches the ball in the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Jamie Squire ...........

And now with the anguish of the Eagles’ fans having seen the team fall once again. It appears that the organization will have to take a serious and inward look as to the failures and frailties of the team, as a whole. It isn’t just about the play of veteran quarterback, Donovan McNabb and the lack ‘a real leader’ on this roster . But somehow, without a playmaker on the team and their lack of being able to steer adversity in the face and handle it well. For all sense and purpose they just seem to have that inevitable fate about them when it comes the NFL playoffs. You seem to know what to expect of the team one way or another. It’s either they play well above expectations with an exemplary style and guile to their play or they have a complete meltdown and become just a complete anathema to their fans in general and to those watching. As to why this all happens is anyone’s guess. But clearly neither coach , Andy Reid or McNabb as a player , can give a precise explanation as to why the team fails so often with increasingly regularity in the playoffs. Other than with the lone Superbowl appearance with Terrel Owens in tow under Reid’s tenure, the Eagles have stumbled at every conceivable obstacle placed in their way. And even then, in the game- the Superbowl loss to the New England Patriots. It was to Owens of all people that team had to look to, to give a bravura performance on the day. It certainly didn’t come from McNabb or the so called ‘Fedex Fast’ Freddie Mitchell. And Mitchell made his presence felt about as much as ‘The Invisible Man’. The same can be said of his less than instinctive hands ! The resultant 24-21 loss in ‘Superbowl XXXIX’ was a bitter pill to swallow for the team.

Come full circle and though the 34-14 playoff loss to the Dallas Cowboys was bad enough. It was the ‘complete lack of attitude and determination’ shown by the Philadelphia Eagles that may well have been hard for the Eagles’ fans as well as the watching public to endure and bare. God knows the ineptitude shown by the team was totally unbelievable. Reid may well have made multiple postseason playoff trips and coached several NFC championship games. But I doubt he’s ever had a team of his, perform so badly in the NFL postseason, as this team had at Cowboys’ Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Organization wise and structurally, the Eagles have to be viewed as on the better ran teams within the NFL. But what may well be lacking, is a general manager with an insight as to the real inherent needs of the team. And with Tom Heckert , the present general manager now leaving to join Mike Holmgren in a similar position with the Cleveland Browns. The Philadelphia Eagles and their owner, Jeffrey Lurie and Team President Joe Banner will be in need of another executive to fill the void left by Heckert. Though it has to be said that in large part it seems to be Reid and Banner who have been making many of the personnel decisions over the years concerning the team. They’ve had their hits and they’ve had their misses. More hits than misses one can surmise. Though it has to be said that when McNabb was drafted out of Syracuse. The fans were none too pleased with the choice. Fate as they say would see a change of heart in the fans over the ensuing years since. Though at times they’ve railed against him and they now appear to doing so again at present. A decade later and the ‘jury’ still seems to be out on McNabb.

Quarterback Michael Vick (#7) of the Philadelphia Eagles looks down on the bench late in the fourth quarter against the Dallas Cowboys during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears  courtesy of  Getty Images/ Jamie  Squire  .........
Quarterback Michael Vick (#7) of the Philadelphia Eagles looks down on the bench late in the fourth quarter against the Dallas Cowboys during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Jamie Squire .........

Courtesy of NFL.com and in conjunction with Associated Press

McNabb’s future once again an issue after loss

ARLINGTON, Texas — After another season ended in the playoffs for Donovan McNabb and the Philadelphia Eagles, a familiar question expects to linger in the offseason.

What is McNabb’s future with the Eagles?

“I say it every year,” McNabb said after Philadelphia lost to the Dallas Cowboys 34-14 in the opening round of the playoffs Saturday night. “I want to be here and don’t want to be anywhere else.”

The 11th-year Eagles quarterback had his contract restructured this past summer, but didn’t get an extension past the 2010 season.

While Philadelphia has made the playoffs eight times with McNabb, the Eagles haven’t won the Super Bowl trophy that has long eluded the franchise.

Because of those postseason failures, the question has come up several times whether the Eagles need a new start with someone other than McNabb.

When asked if McNabb was going to be the starter in 2010, coach Andy Reid responded: “Yes, I do.”

McNabb was 19 of 37 for 230 yards with a touchdown and an interception as his career postseason record dropped to 9-7.

The Eagles had won their first game in seven consecutive postseason appearances since Reid became coach. McNabb was the starter in six of those victories.

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 Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb (5) leaves the field after losing an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Eagles 34-14.  picture appears  courtesy of  ap/photo/ David  J.  Phillip .....
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb (5) leaves the field after losing an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Eagles 34-14. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ David J. Phillip .....

With just a year left on his contract, McNabb and the Eagles have some serious decisions to make. The window of opportunity for not only McNabb and Andy Reid seem to opening and shutting repeatedly. But with each passing year and with diminishing quarterbacks skills and Reid’s somewhat less than exact determination, things for the team just seem to be set on that inevitable path of failure on appearance. In Kevin Kolb they have what one can consider to be an able backup and some might perceive a capable quarterback. But thing is ‘…can ‘he deliver in a big game when it really counts and when all is said to be on the line’ ? This is the answer that no one seems to know and they have yet to witness for themselves within the organization and by the fans themselves. They’ve seen only fleeting glimpses of the player and it’d be idiotic to suggest that Michael Vick can deemed to be McNabb’s successor in waiting. He may well have been signed by the team, merely as a way of allowing the player to redeem himself back within the ‘fraternity’ of the NFL. But Vick as a ‘long term option’ for the team at the position is definitely a none-starter ! He’s shown glimpses that he can still play and be exhilarating and electrifying all in one move but the tendencies for errant plays and signs of rust are still there. And that’s not what is needed by the team or the organization at this time or for the foreseeable future.

Eagles'  President & CEO and  majority  stake owner  in  the  Philadelphia   Eagles,  Jeffrey Lurie (right)  seen  here   with New  England Patriots'  owner   Robert Kraft.    picture  appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/  Matthew  Hollings  ..................
Eagles' President & CEO and majority stake owner in the Philadelphia Eagles, Jeffrey Lurie (right) seen here with New England Patriots' owner Robert Kraft. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Matthew Hollings ..................

The Eagles could trade McNabb but would there be any takers for the veteran qb ? At the same times does McNabb feel that he can lead this team to where they desire to be ? As good a player as he’s been over the years ,with the acclaim he’s received and the Pro Bowl appearances. I simply view Donovan McNabb as one of the better quarterbacks within the NFL. As a leader , I seriously doubt that he has all of the prerequisite qualities shown by the likes of Drew Brees >, Kurt Warner, Philip Rivers , Peyton Manning , Tom Brady or Ben Roethlisberger. In many pundits and fans’ eyes he might be viewed as an elite quarterback within the NFL. I view him still as a ‘top ten quarterback’ within the league but as ‘an elite quarterback’, at this juncture I’m not so sure that he’s still got what it takes. Time inevitably catches up with all. For some it’s sooner than it is for others . But it now appears that it has not only caught up with the Philadelphia Eagles and for Donovan McNabb and Andy Reid in particular. But it’s my belief that it is now beginning to devour them both to such an extent that they no longer look viable as candidates in their now presumed positions as a quarterback and coach within the organization. It’d be remiss to suggest that the game has passed them by. But clearly something is awry here both of these individuals. As to how to bring about the desired effect is open to a great deal of debate and speculation at this juncture.

 Fans of the Dallas Cowboys cheer in the stands during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears  courtesy of Getty Images/ Ronald Martinez ...........
Fans of the Dallas Cowboys cheer in the stands during the 2010 NFC wild-card playoff game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Cowboys Stadium on January 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Ronald Martinez ...........

As an outsider looking in and observing the Eagles , I think that whatever decision they make it will be one that’ll have a lasting effect as to its very existence and future. The decision itself won’t be an easy one for either Banner or Reid to make. And at the same time we won’t really know what McNabb , himself , will be thinking at this juncture. He’s saying all of the right things but saying something and it actually happening are two completely different things altogether. So let the chips fall where they may and let’s see what happens with the Philadelphia Eagles. Time Is On Their Side but really how much longer will it be there ? What are your thoughts on the matter at this juncture ?

Led by the ‘indomitable’ Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones’ rendition of ‘Time Is On My Side’

Round Up Of The NFL Sports Weekend & Other Pieces Of Triviality

Well, the NFL weekend is all but through, with the exception of Monday night’s scheduled game between the Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2) and Denver Broncos (6-1) from Invesco Field , Denver , Colorado.

Buccaneers quarterback  Josh   Freeman  hands the ball  off  during the   game  played  against  the  Green Bay  Packers at  Raymond  James Stadium  in  Tampa Florida .  The  Buccaneers   would   go  on to  defeat  Green  Bay  38-28  and  being  ensured    of  their   first  win  of the  season.   picture  apears  courtesy  of  getty  images/ J Meric .............

Buccaneers’ quarterback Josh Freeman hands the ball off during the game played against the Green Bay Packers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. The Buccaneers would go on to defeat Green Bay 38-28 , being ensured of their first win of the NFL season. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ J.Meric ..
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And as evidenced from Sunday’s slate of games for Week 9 , we now know more than ever, that the NFL is still in something of a diabolical state when it comes to several teams. There’s the good, the bad and the downright ugly ! Based on what took place between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-7) and the Green Bay Packers (4-4) at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa , Florida. It was hard to extrapolate which was indeed the winless team and which team was indeed the one with ambitions of quite possibly making the postseason. Suffice to say that the game was filled with a litany of errors from either side. And the quarterback play of both teams left a great deal to be desired.

Buccaners'  defensive players  Torrie  Cox (27)  , Geno Hayes (54) and  Tanard Jackson (36)  set  about   tackling  Packers'  wide  receiver  James  Jones (89)   during  the  game .    picture  appears  courtesy  of  getty  images/  J  Meric ..........

Buccaneers’ defensive players Torrie Cox (27), Geno Hayes (54) and Tanard Jackson (36) set about tackling Packers’ wide receiver James Jones (89) during the game.
picture appears courtesy of getty images/ J Meric ….

Buccaneers’ rookie quarterback, Josh Freeman did just enough to garner his first professional win in an NFL uniform. Which was much to the delight of the home fans there in Tampa. As to what this may well mean down the lines for the Buccaneers and their coach , Raheem Morris. Well, for now let’s just say with that first win of the season in defeating the Packers 38-28 . It leaves the Buccaneers with something to smile about. As to what this means for the Mike McCarthy coached Packers’ team ? Suffice to say , it’s back to the drawing board for McCarthy and his coaching staff. Their offensive line couldn’t protect quarterback, Aaron Rogers from the Buccaneers’ defensive play , much less from the H1N1 strain of the swine flu. That’s how awful the Packers’ offensive line were on Sunday !

Eagles' head  coach  Andy  Reid  and  his  opposing   number   Wade Phillips of  the   Dallas Cowboys   meet  centerfield  after  the  game to  congratulate one another .

Andy Reid ,coach of the Philadelphia Eagles and his opposite number Wade Phillips of the Dallas Cowboys meet centerfield at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia after the game. The Cowboys had just defeated the Eagles in an NFC East divisional match up 20-16, to sit atop of the division with a one game lead over their rival. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Craig Gentry ……

Image is everything , hype means nothing ! If that were really true then how can one explain the seemingly endless media frenzy concerning the Dallas Cowboys (6-2) and everything that this team is said to represent ? Unlike any other team in the NFL the attention paid to this team in the print format as well as on television and radio borders on the insane. Granted , that $1.5 billion monstrosity built in Arlington, creates the desired facade that this is an NFL franchise that has a great deal going for it both on and off the field. Truth be known, the Cowboys are simply nothing more than a well ran cash cow. Making money for the organization is the sole existence for Jerry Jones. And anything beyond that is considered to be a bye product of it all. The franchise seeks to get back to winning ways in terms of a postseason berth with the ultimate goal of landing a sixth Superbowl title. But that would be predicated upon them placing a winning team on the field of play. Something of which they’ve failed to do in almost a decade.

Cowboys'  wide  receiver  Miles  Austin (19)  takes  it to  the  house  with a  49 yd  touchdown  reception  run  against the  Philadelphia  Eagles  in  the  fourth quarter  of the   game.  Eagles' defensive  player   Quintin  Mikell (27)  missed  his   coverage  assignment   of the  receiver  in  allowing  the  score  .   picture  appears courtesy  of  getty images/ Al Bello  ............

Cowboys’ wide receiver Miles Austin (19) takes it to the house , with a 49 yd touchdown reception run against the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter of the game played at Lincoln Financial Field , Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Eagles’ defensive player Quintin Mikell (27) missed his coverage assignment of Austin in allowing the score. picture appears courtesy of getty images/Al Bello ……..

Today the Cowboys faced their arch rivals the Philadelphia Eagles (5-3) in an NFC East divisional match up, that sought supremacy within the division. And while there’s no doubt that the winner of the division has an outside shot to garner one of the top two seeds in the NFC pecking order ,come the postseason. Whether or not that team from the division can acquit themselves well enough in the playoffs, is clearly open to a great deal of speculation. Of late ,these two teams have played some great football but at the same there’s been a great deal of inconsistency to their play. Hence the reason for the statement made concerning their post-season ambitions.

Whenever the Eagles and Cowboys tend to meet. It is either under the best or worse of circumstances as to the scenario placed within that specific environment. For both coaches it has come to be the norm for gauging their teams and the coaches , themselves. At the start of the season the speculation had already began as to whether or Wade Phillips would still be in a job, were the Cowboys to have an unsuccessful season. From week to week , even during the preseason that talk was being fomented in all avenues of the press. And for the Eagles’ coach , Andy Reid , the talk there was whether or not he and veteran quarterback , Donovan McNabb were still an asset to the team and the franchise in general. Well , considering their legacy with the franchise and the success that they’ve brought during their tenure. Those who were trying to make a claim that both ought to be released clearly don’t remember the years when this team was in the doldrums.

Sunday’s game between these two stalwarts reminded us why it is that the NFC East is considered to be the best division with the NFL. The Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles provided us with an allout air assault with a passing game that was replete with some spectacular plays by both sets of receivers on either team. And if anything Cowboys’ quarterback, Tony Romo may well have now overcome the loss of Terrell Owens. Not that anyone is now the slightest bit concerned that he was once a former Cowboy. Now the thought is , when is the proverbial meltdown going to place in his new place of residence ? As of yet, there hasn’t been a seismic shift to indicate that Owens is about explode and unleash a tirade against the Buffalo Bills‘ organization and his Bills’ teammates. But rest assured, if the downward slide in Buffalo continues. Then you’ll definitely be hearing it , loud and clear. It’s just the way TO is !

The Dallas Cowboys managed to get their sixth win of the season in defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 20-16 , outscoring their rivals in the fourth quarter (10-3) of a relatively hard fought game. And Romo had his best game of the season so far. He was able to find 7 different receivers on the way to the team’s victory over the Eagles. And they now hold a one game lead over their closest rival , as they sit atop of the NFC East. For both the New York Giants (5-4) and the pitiful Washington Redskins (2-6). Well, things at present aren’t looking too good for either team. The Redskins are in deep turmoil and the Tom Coughlan coached Giants , now can’t even obtain a win, even if they were spotted 7 point advantage.

As we’ve now reached the midway point of the season. We’ll begin to see a push, where the legitimate contenders for the postseason will try to separate themselves from the pretenders. And the also rans , well they’re now essentially out of it. Though they could very well play ‘spoilers’ for a number of teams who still feel that they’re in with a shot of making the postseason.

Titans'  running  back   Chris Johnson  (28) is  tackled  by the  San  Francisco  49ers'  defensive  player  Patrick   Willis  (52)   during  the   game  played   at   Candlestick  Park  ,  San  Francisco  ,  California.

Titans’ running back Chris Johnson (28) is tackled by the San Francisco 49ers’ defensive player Patric Willis (52) during the game played at Candlestick Park , San Francisco , California. The Titans would go on to defeat the 49ers 34-27, to win their second consecutive game of the season , pushing their record in the NFL to 2-6 . picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Ezra Shaw …….

And for the claims being made by Titans’ running back Chris Johnson , that his team is quite capable of reeling off 10 straight wins to place the team amongst the thick of things. Well, it’d be a whole lot easier Chris , had you made those predictions earlier . Rather than after the Tennessee Titans (2-6) hadn’t gotten off to an 0-6 start to the season. Now you’re setting yourself and your teammates up for an even greater fall in the event of another loss. And that my friend is no laughing matter.

Whatever happens throughout the ensuing run to the end of the regular season. We will probably all remark as to the ups and downs for many of the teams in the NFL . But even more so , I think that the conversation will be about how bland and bad so many of the teams were. Parity is now being used as a misnomer for the inadequacies that’d been sought within the league. One of the problems is however, the lack of on-field talent but what’s even becoming more so, is the lack of depth in talent amongst the coaching ranks in the NFL at present. Take a look around and scrutinize the rosters of the teams with regard to the coaches and their staffs. Non too impressive to begin with , now is it ?

Click here to see the the NFL divisional standings …………………

Week 9 Results ……..

Washington Redskins 17 Atlanta Falcons 31

Arizona Cardinals 41 Chicago Bears 21

Baltimore Ravens 7 Cincinnati Bengals 17

Houston Texans 17 Indianapolis Colts 20

Kansas City Chiefs 21 Jacksonville Jaguars 24

Carolina Panthers 20 New Orleans Saints 30

Detroit Lions 20 Seattle Seahawks 32

San Diego Chargers 21 New York Giants 20

Tennessee Titans 34 San Francisco 49ers 27

When Is The Wildcat Offense Not A Wildcat At All ? Pardon Me But You’ve Been Punk’d …………….!

When Is The Wildcat Offense Not A Wildcat At All ? Pardon Me But You’ve Been Punk’d ……..!

For all of the hype and ballyhoo concerning the Miami Dolphins and their offensive presence and the ‘wildcat offense’ . It’d appear that when you live and die by the sword and there’s not much creativity beyond that one offensive strategy . Then the cupboard becomes bare . All of a sudden the Miami Dolphins are beginning to look very ordinary. Much of what we’d witnessed from the team last year was surprising. But this year the teams around the NFL have seen this team for what they really are. What’s even more surprising are the analysts who are still buying into the idiocy that this is still competitive. And in large part, they were against the New Orleans before their sails were caught in the bluster of the winds of Drew Brees and the offensive presence and play of the Saints.

New Orleans  Saints'  cornerback  Tracy  Porter (22)  runs for  the  score  in the   fourth  quarter   against  the  Miami  Dolphins   in a  game  played  at  Land  Shark  Stadium   in  Miami,  Florida.   The  Dolphins   would  give  up  a   24-3  lead  to the  Saints  and    ended  up   losing  46-34   .      picture  appears   courtesy  of  ap/photo/  Jeffrey   M.  Boan      .......................
New Orleans Saints' cornerback Tracy Porter (22) runs for the score in the fourth quarter against the Miami Dolphins in a game played at Land Shark Stadium in Miami, Florida. The Dolphins would give up a 24-3 lead to the Saints and ended up losing 46-34 . picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Jeffrey M. Boan .......................

The New Orleans Saints started off as if they were asleep at the wheel . And it wasn’t just midway through the game that they suddenly realized that they were in with a good chance of being one of the unbeatens within the NFL who could be in for a fall. From being 24-3 down, Brees and the Saints rallied back to defeat the Dolphins 46-34 . For Sean Payton and this Saints’ team , they now move to 6-0 within the NFL and sit atop of the NFC South. And with the fall of the Minnesota Vikings and Brett Favre , who fell to the Pittsburgh Steelers,27-17.

Dolphins'  wide   receiver   Ted Ginn Jr.(right)  can't  hang  on  to  the  ball   causing an   interception  that   would  be   returned   for  a  touchdown    by the  Saints'  cornerback    Tracy  Porter  (22) .      picture appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/ Jeffrey  M.  Boan   ................
Dolphins' wide receiver Ted Ginn Jr.(right) can't hang on to the ball causing an interception that would be returned for a touchdown by the Saints' cornerback Tracy Porter (22) . picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Jeffrey M. Boan ................

Well, can we now stop with the hoorah, as to the indomitable play of the veteran quarterback ? It’s become an irritant, much like a pain in one’s rear end ! And at this moment in time, it’s very much how I feel about Favre and his traveling circus. Clown school must be out, and one would expect the likes of Mark Schlereth , Merril Hoge and Ron Jaworski must be declaring their profound disappointment with the Vikings’ loss. I trust they’ll be replacing their Brett Favre posters with pictures now, of Clay Aiken ?

Vikings'  quarterback  Brett  Favre (4)  watches  as the   Pittsburgh  Steelers'  Keyaron  Fox  (57)  returns  a TD  interception   for   82 yards   in  the  fourth    quarter   of  the   game  played  at  Heinz  Field    in  Pittsburgh   Pennsylvania,.     The  Steelers   would    go  on  to   defeat  the  Vikings   27-17   inflicting them  with  their    first   loss  of the  season.        picture appears  courtesy  of   ap/photo/Star Tribune/   Jerry   Holt   ........................
Vikings' quarterback Brett Favre (4) watches as the Pittsburgh Steelers' Keyaron Fox (57) returns a TD interception for 82 yards in the fourth quarter of the game played at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania,. The Steelers would go on to defeat the Vikings 27-17 inflicting them with their first loss of the season. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/Star Tribune/ Jerry Holt ........................

For the Miami Dolphins and their coach, Tony Sparano , they now have to show their fans and those of the NFL in general. That they can play with a great deal more than what they’ve shown us. But what else , can we now expect from a team that has fallen short of expectations to begin with ? So much was promised but so little has been delivered by this team. The AFC East is now back to the way it ought to be ! Cream always rises to the top and so it has done so, once again. Need one say anymore on the subject ?

Buccaneers'   quarterback  Josh  Johnson  (11)  is   sacked  by   Patriots'  safety  Pat  Chung  (25) and  linebacker   Tully  Banta-Cain  (95)   in   an   NFL   game   played   at   Wembley   Stadium  ,  London  ,  England .,   The   New England  Patriots   would  hand the  Tampa  Bay  Buccaneers  a   demoralizing   35-7  loss   .  Leaving  the  Buccaneers  still  winless  at   0-6   within  the  NFL.    picture  appears  courtesy  of    ap/photo/ Matt  Dunham   ....................
Buccaneers' quarterback Josh Johnson (11) is sacked by Patriots' safety Pat Chung (25) and linebacker Tully Banta-Cain (95) in an NFL game played at Wembley Stadium , London , England ., The New England Patriots would hand the Tampa Bay Buccaneers a demoralizing 35-7 loss . Leaving the Buccaneers still winless at 0-6 within the NFL. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Matt Dunham ....................

Well is there anything else that needs to be said when the St Louis Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Oakland Raiders still are mired in so much putrid mediocrity ? If there has ever been a triumvirate of teams to have played so badly within the NFL ? And their fans don’t appear to be indifferent as to the sheer ineptitude being displayed by these teams. Personally, when I see fecal matter in the street , I tend to avoid it. There’s no way I’d want to intentionally step in it. Which essentially is what we’re seeing from a number of these teams and their fans. They’re quite prepared to keep on supporting the team through thick and thin , without questioning the ineptitude being shown by the team. I’ve even had a Raiders’ fan try to tell me that this team was disciplined. Well , if that’s dependent upon how one defines the word discipline ? In the Raiders’ case, under the tenure of Tom Cable, it’s akin to playing with the aplomb of a bunch of effeminate transgendered males. And if this is an affront to the transgendered males out there . Then, please accept my apologies as it’s not meant to offend at all. Merely, to make you feel that there are guys out there who are beneath you in the social pecking order. So for Raiders’ fans out there, get your players to man up and act like they’ve got a pair ! And the same applies to Tom Cable as well. Acting tough and assaulting an assistant coordinator is one thing , but it only proves what a fool you really are to begin with. Now, the question that one needs to ask …..is Al Davis still cognizant of what’s going on- on the field of play, as well as off it ?

Oakland  Raiders' quarterback   JaMarcus  Russell (2)   sits  on  the  bench  in  the  waning  moments  of  the  team's   38-0    loss  to  the  New  York   Jets  in  game  played  in  Oakland  Alameda  County  Stadium,  Oakland   , California,.      picture  appears  courtesy  of   ap/photo/  Tony  Avelar    .........................
Oakland Raiders' quarterback JaMarcus Russell (2) sits on the bench in the waning moments of the team's 38-0 loss to the New York Jets in game played in Oakland Alameda County Stadium, Oakland , California,. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Tony Avelar .........................

NFL Scores Week 7 ….

Green Bay Packers 31-3 Cleveland Browns
San Francisco 49ers 21-24 Houston Texans
San Diego Chargers 37-7 Kansas City Chiefs
Indianapolis Colts 42-6 St Louis Rams
New England Patriots 35-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Minnesota Vikings 17-27 Pittsburgh Steelers
Buffalo Bills 20-9 Carolina Panthers
New York Jets 38-0 Oakland Raiders
Chicago Bears 10-45 Cincinnati Bengals
Atlanta Falcons 21-37 Dallas Cowboys
New Orleans Saints 46-34 Miami Dolphins
Arizona Cardinals 24-17 New York Giants

Raiders'  backup  quarterback  Bruce  Gradkowski  (5) is  about  to  be  brought  down   for the  sack by   Jets'   linebacker  Calvin  Pace    in  the   third   quarter  of the  game.   picture appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/  Ben  Margot  .....................
Raiders' backup quarterback Bruce Gradkowski (5) is about to be brought down for the sack by Jets' linebacker Calvin Pace in the third quarter of the game. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Ben Margot .....................

Monday Night Football encapsulates the game being played between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Redskins. This NFC East match-up pits the beleaguered Redskins and a somewhat pedantic Eagles’ team looking to rebound to from last week’s stunning 13-9 defeat at the hands of the Oakland Raiders. The Eagles’ , Donovan McNabb was doing his level best to make the statements made by Rush Limbaugh, seem to have some veracity to it. His play was so inept that he made his Raiders’ counterpart JaMarcus Russell seem like a Pro Bowl caliber player. Which in essence, if it were possible then I’m sure that the Raiders’ quarterback coach, Paul Hackett would have Russell enrolled in such a program, were it available to begin with. Because Russell has yet to prove that his game has matured to the level where one would deem him even an NFL ready quarterback. And most certainly, it would provide Hackett with something of a respite at this juncture.

I’ve stated this already but in the sixteen plus years that I’ve been following the NFL . Since I emigrated to this country , I can’t remember having witnessed such an abundance of horrendous NFL teams. I know there’s always been talk of parity -whatever they allege it to mean. But at this juncture in time, you can tell , when which teams are good, which are marginal and the ones who are infinitely bad . It’s not rocket science and I certainly don’t need Ashton Kutcher to be about to provide me with a playful prank to begin with ! Seven weeks into the NFL season and I’ve been already provided with enough of them to make a scrapbook of it all. Have you been watching the NFL lately ? How much worse it is liable to get ?