They’ve got ninety-nine problems and it’s all about their quarterback …

They’ve got ninety-nine problems and it’s all about their quarterback …

It tells you a great deal about a franchise, when it just happens to be the team owner making many of the personnel decisions , rather than the coaching or front office staff of a team. We have all witnessed the machinations of Al Davis , former owner of the Oakland Raiders and how he continued to ruin the franchise during the latter years of his tenure. Dallas Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones has still not seen his beloved team win a Superbowl in over a decade . Now, while having the customary setback after their loss to the Arizona Cardinals in week nine , with Tony Romo now on the team’s injury reserve list and their being mounting speculation as to if he will be suited up for the Cowboys’ game in London against the Jacksonville Jaguars . If Romo is unable to play , a game time decision is likely to be made by head coach Jason Garrett but with a great deal of input coming from Jerry Jones. It remains to be seen whether the incumbent starter will be replaced by his backup Brandon Weeden.

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With their defeat the Dallas Cowboys lost their grip on the NFC East , with the Philadelphia Eagles now leading the division over their arch rival . For the Eagles their worries have now manifested with the loss of starting quarterback Nick Foles for as many as three weeks. Foles’ loss will likely provide the opportunity for Mark Sanchez to resurrect his career in the NFL . Sanchez will get the start when the Philadelphia Eagles play host to the Carolina Panthers at Lincoln Financial Field , in Philadelphia, Pennyslvania, in the Monday night game on the 10th November ,2014.

Mark Sanchez will be asked to be conservative in his play, with the likely propensity for Chip Kelly to use the ground game against the Panthers in this all NFC contest . There is no denying the Eagles will need this win, if only maintain their lead over the Dallas Cowboys. These two NFC East adversaries still have to meet in their seasonal match-ups, which will take place during week twelve at AT&Stadium in Arlington, Texas and with the second of the two contests reverting to Philadelphia in week fifteen.

If Jerry Jones is said to have a high opinion of his own managerial acumen, then his peer, Daniel Snyder , owner of the Washington Redskins , who it is believed insisted Robert Griffin III , be given the start in week nine against the Minnesota Vikings. Griffin returning from an injury was less than stellar in the game where the Vikings came away with the victory. Ill-timed pass attempts and failure to connect with a number of his receivers played a part in the Redskins’ defeat and Robert Griffin’s poor play.

With their depth chart simply thin on experienced quarterbacks, Jay Gruden and his coaching staff have brought in Terrell Pryor with a view to assessing the player’s attributes and whether or not he would be a good fit for the Washington Redskins’ team. Pryor’s career in the NFL can be best described as lackluster and very much understated. This could be considered the desperate act of a head coach at his wit’s end , whose faith in the quarterbacks now on the roster, is are less than he expected to see , given the experience of Kirk Cousins, Colt McCoy and Robert Griffin III .

The Redskins are now in a dire position and great deal of the blame for their situation can be placed firmly on the shoulders of GM Bruce Allen, Gruden’s predecessor , Mike Shanahan , his former assistant , the team’s former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan . Shanahan and his son, were simply bereft of creativity and the relationship with Daniel Snyder was less then commendable , during the latter part of their tenure with the Washington Redskins.

Ben Roethlisbeger seems to be back at his very best, with the Pittsburgh Steelers now riding high within the AFC North and the two-time winning Superbowl quarterback now showing the poise and play with the performances, likely to put the Steelers back in the postseason for the first time in three years , when their last appearance came in 2011 as a wildcard entrant , where they fell to the Denver Broncos in a narrow six-point loss. The Steelers are winners of four of their last five regular season games, with their last defeat coming in a 31-10 loss to the Cleveland Browns in week six. Roehtlisberger in those five contests, has simply been unbelievable , passing for over 1664 yards , fourteen touchdowns , one interception , with a 112.55 quarterback rating. Rarefied air , but nothing, coach Mike Tomlin hasn’t seen from the player since becoming the head coach.

Pittsburgh, with their lead in a very competitive AFC North, now down to a one-game margin, there remains a great deal to play for, with each of the four teams all in with a shot of claiming the divisional crown , barring any mishaps or major injuries . The Steelers’ passing game has always been based on the efficiency of their quarterbacks. Ben Roethlisberger has been resplendent in showing his prowess during the season , where he has been among the most successful quarterbacks in the the league up to this point of the NFL schedule. A week ten match-up against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford , New Jersey, will see the Pittsburgh Steelers take on their AFC East conference rivals . To describe the Jets’ seasonas dire would be an understatement , where there has been a convergence of ineptitude witnessed in the poor play of Geno Smith as well as the entire team under head coach Rex Ryan. Many are now wondering, if the head coach can survive the rest of the season or will he simply be allowed to coach the team until the end of their regular season schedule. Jets’ GM John Idzik has not been candid about the coach’s position , with criticism also being leveled at the front office executive for his decision making and handling of the organization.

An eight-game losing streak has seen the New York Jets’ pratfalls take on comical implications for the team and their fans in attendance for their home games. If there was decision to be made about “eating crow” or eating dog crap by the fans of the New York Jets, I get the feeling they would take delight in eating both , and then take aim at Geno Smith and Rex Ryan , showing their displeasure at the duo. If Smith’s backup Michael Vick is made the starter for the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers , I am not so sure the veteran quarterback can lead the team to a victory. Vick still believes he can be productive for an NFL franchise at this stage of his career, but those grandiose ideas should now be placed on a back-burner for a player who has failed to live up to expectations. Geno Smith , Michael Vick and Rex Ryan’s career have now become intertwined and it is extremely difficult to see how the Jets as a franchise, can move forward, with all three still being a part of this organization.

Five straight games of passing for three-hundred yards or more , have placed the credentials of Andrew Luck under even more scrutiny as the top pick from the 2012 NFL Draft has seen his stature rise since he entered the NFL. There were doubts , as to whether or not he could succeed Peyton Manning and then lead the Indianapolis Colts to any semblance of success. Two consecutive postseason appearances have a way of bolstering a young player’s credentials and clearly that has been achieved by Andrew Luck. Now the question becomes, can he lead the franchise to a Superbowl victory ?

Though the Colts have not fallen short short in their last two games . In week eight they were on the wrong side of an entertaining and high-scoring contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers, during which Andrew Luck and Ben Roethlisberger combined for over eight-hundred yards of passing offense , nine touchdowns and a single interception . Chuck Pagano must like what he is now seeing from his young quarterback , with his only concern being the number of interceptions thrown by the player. Indiana’s victory over to the New York Giants was a timely booster , wasn’t perplexing , a great deal of which can be put down to the fact the Giants’ defense has performed inconsistently over the course of the season, rather than suggesting Eli Manning is now back at his very best . Manning , his teammates and the coaching staff are still trying figure out the conundrum that has become their season .

A bye-week in week ten, will Chuck Pagano’s players the chance to recuperate , study the playbook and then prepare for their week eleven contest agains the New England Patriots , their quarterback Tom Brady who once again is having an exceptional season.

Confounding critics, who may well have written them off , after their embarrassing loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, the Patriots are back on track and raring to go. The second half of the team’s schedule is a daunting one , with several difficult games on their agenda. Their week nine annihilation of the Denver Broncos was clinical , where the highlight , was meant to be the chance to witness another Tom Brady Peyton Manning match-up, didn’t quite live up to expectation, with the Broncos’ defense simply being in tatters after being shredded by Brady. If John Fox is said to have a concern , then it has to be the fact the Denver Broncos’ secondary even with the acquisitions made are no better than their lineup of last season. Struggled as they have, if the Denver Broncos are to rekindle their hopes of making the postseason and and completely eradicate the memories of the loss to the Seattle Seahawks in the Superbowl, then their defense will have to be far more efficient , than we have seen this season.

Peyton Manning remains one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history having broken several of league’s most revered records as he certainly goes on to become future inductee to the Hall of Fame. There is no denying the Denver Broncos are only as good as their quarterback is said to be on game-day , and granted, there are likely to be times where Manning will have an exceptional game , but the team will end up losing the contest , but more than not , it tends to be something of a rarity with this high-caliber player

Johnny Manziel might not have been the first quarterback taken in this most recent NFL Draft, even with their being proponents of the player to be taken higher, with many believing him to be a consensus top-five pick , if not the number one overall pick. The Cleveland Browns drafted the former Texas AM quarterback and he has become an integral part of the team , while being offered a number of opportunities to show his skill-set.

For the moment, Brian Hoyer has the starting role for the Browns and with the team being in contention for the AFC North , there can be no justification to have Manzel inserted into the lineup, as the starting quarterback , in spite of the clamor for him to be on the field. Mike Pettine knows there may well come a time at some point in the season where Johnny Manziel will be called on to take the reins , but for the time being I am inclined to believe he will will continue to ride on the ” hot hand ” of his current starting quarterback.

Cleveland’s defeat of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers added to the Buccaneers’ woes and has sparked the belief with the Cleveland Browns’ fans , this could be the season, where they challenge the Pittsburgh Steelers , Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals for divisional supremacy and a postseason berth. The Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals will meet in a Thursday night contest at Paul Brown Stadium, in Cincinnati , Ohio,.

A case could be made where the Jacksonville Jaguars’ faith in Blake Bortles might well have been over-reaching with the belief if made a starter , the rookie quarterback could ignite this fading franchise. Hard to believe the last quarterback of note for the organization was Mark Brunell. Considering Brunell’s last game for the Jaguars was during the 2003 NFL season and that his last professional game as a quarterback came in week fourteen of the regular season schedule in 2011 , when he played for the New York Jets as a veteran forty-one year old. The fact that the Jets were on the wrong side of a demoralizing loss suffered at the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles, should not come as a big surprise.

Gus Bradley and his coaching staff will now seek to guide Bortles through the landmines and trappings of being a rookie quarterback , the front office sought to be the future of the franchise. A 1-8 record is not at all inspiring and though Blake Bortles cannot be blamed for the team’s mediocre statistics , yet it does beg the question , if his baptism of fire can be so bad, what are the alternatives if any for the organization to take at this juncture ?

Jacksonsville will have the Dallas Cowboys as their guests this upcoming Sunday at Wembley Stadium in London, England , where the Cowboys will be hoping for Tony Romo to make his return after being sidelined in week nine due to an injury. Both teams are in need of a victory , but the signs point to a road win for the visiting team , in what is likely to turn out to be a lopsided contest.

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In the age of the quarterback , where NFL has now become systematically about the passing game and defenses being asked to slow down and actually negate that facet of the game. There is no denying the passers in today’s game are seen as the on field generals, with their salaries and contracts being among the highest offered in the league. How do you see the NFL manifesting itself in terms of how the game is perceived and the appreciation of the quarterbacks ? By all means do leave a comment as you see fit on this and anything else you believe relevant to this article .

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Picture and slideshow details below .

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(1) From left to right , Dallas Cowboys’ head coach Jason Garrett , defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin and the team’s quarterback Tony Romo. The trio arrived at London’s Heathrow Airport in preparation for Sunday’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in a game to be played at Wembley Stadium . AP Photo / Eric Barton …

(2) Brandon Weeden (3) of the Dallas Cowboys passes against the San Diego Chargers during a preseason game at Qualcomm Stadium on August 7, 2014 in San Diego, California. If Tony Romo is declared unfit for the Cowboys’ game against the Jaguars then Weeden is likely to get the start. Getty Images / Stephen Dunn ….

(3) Mark Sanchez (3) of the Philadelphia Eagles is seen here during a game played against the St Louis Rams . With the unavailability of starting quarterback Nick Foles , Sanchez as the backup, will now be inserted into the starting role by head coach Chip Kelly. AP Photo / Howard Jones ..

(4) Ben Roethlisberger (7) of the Pittsburgh Steelers is congratulated by Andrew Luck (12) of the Indianapolis Colts after Pittsburgh’s 51-34 win at Heinz Field on October 26, 2014 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The duo of AFC quarterbacks put on an exhilarating display in providing the fans of the NFL with the highest scoring game of the day during week eight . Getty Images / Stephen Dunn …

(5) Washington Redskins’ quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) looks to make an offensive play on the ground in a game against the Minnesota Vikings . The Redskins lost the game and pretty much any chance of making a legitimate run to win their division or gain a postseason berth. AP Photo/ Michael Parsons

(6) Tom Brady (12) of the New England Patriots and Peyton Manning (18) of the Denver Broncos exchange post-game salutations . Brady and the Patriots defeated the Broncos in their AFC clash , which was somewhat , a lopsided affair , ending with New England’s victory over their arch rivals. Getty Images / Andreas Matsos ..

(7) Blake Bortles left , of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Johnny Manziel of the Cleveland Browns , are two of this season’s NFL rookie quarterbacks looking to gain some playing experience in the NFL this year. The Cleveland Browns are looking to make a serious push to win the AFC North, where they currently sit in a Isecond place tie with the Cincinnati Bengals , one game behind division leaders the Pittsburgh Steelers (6-3) . AP Photo/ Tracey Atwater …..
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When is it said to be right, to be politically correct?

When is it said to be right, to be politically correct?

In recent months and weeks there has been an ongoing debate , that quite literally few members of the public are said to be interested in. The NFL franchise , the Washington Redskins have been the center of an ongoing debate concerning the organization’s name, use of the word “Redskins” is seen as an affront to the Native American tribes , that were in fact the first inhabitants of the country.

For team owner , Daniel ‘Dan’ Snyder and specifically the NFL hierarchy , the issue has been rarely broached or addressed in full and become a matter of public debate in any type of forum. The print media, merely seeks to make this, their issue of the moment, as when they see fit and rarely have they sought to discuss , other issues such as the ongoing lack of funding provided to the Department of the Interior , who in fact are directly responsible for dealing with Native Indian issues , nationwide . Bear in mind also , the ongoing rise in crime, lack of employment opportunities, education, collegiate educational opportunities , but overall, actual direct medical care to many of the tribes on many of the reservations nationwide. Yet, here we are, in the midst of an issue using the word Redskins, which is said to be deemed derogatory among Native American Indians ? How insane is that meant to be?

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The Redskins’ franchise, through no fault of their own, have been caught within the midst of this debate with the organization being criticized on all fronts, most notably with former PGA Tour golfer Notah Begay III , becoming a vocal opponent of any type of association with the NFL franchise, albeit, that Snyder, has made every effort to make use of his wealth to aid a number of Native American organizations with charitable donations and directly with programs aimed in educating children from various tribes nationwide. I believe this discussion, to blurred on so many levels, because the league itself , has no wish to be part of this ongoing progress. At the same time , if using the word Redskins is a said to cause Begay , himself a Native American Indian, , such distress. Then why has he not shown similar outrage, with the usage of the word, ” Seminole ” , as it relates to the use of that word in the naming of the Florida State Seminoles ? Granted , with regard to the Seminoles and the use there as it relates to the collegiate program , there also seems to be an ongoing dialog there , that has yet to be fully addressed on a national level, but for the moment , it seems to be overlooked and to be playing no part of the ongoing debate concerning the Washington Redskins.

Courtesy of USA Today

Washington Redskins foundation loses another event sponsor

By Erik Brady, USA Today Sports

Notah Begay/

Notah Begay Associated Press Rick Portnoy

The Notah Begay III Foundation pulled its support from this weekend’s Arizona golf tournament to benefit scholarships for Native American students when it learned the title sponsor was the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation.

“I find it underhanded and despicable that the Washington football team would co-opt this event,” Crystal Echo Hawk, NB3 foundation executive director, told USA TODAY Sports on Sunday. “As soon as we found out about their involvement we withdrew our support.”

Begay, a four-time PGA Tour winner and an analyst with the Golf Channel, is Navajo, Isleta Pueblo and San Felipe Pueblo. He is a longtime critic of the Washington team name, which he called “a very clear example of institutionalized degradation” on ESPN last year.

MORE: Nonprofit National Indian Gaming Association pulls support

Echo Hawk, who is Pawnee, said the NB3 Foundation was asked in February to donate silent auction items for a golf tournament to be held in Chandler, Ariz., this month; the foundation donated golf apparel.

When she found out Friday that Saturday’s event was sponsored by the NFL team’s foundation, she called the radio station that asked for the donation. Echo Hawk spoke to Tony Little, general manager of Arizona radio station KTNN, and demanded that NB3’s name be removed from the event officially called the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation (OAF) 1st Annual KTNN Celebrity Golf Tournament.

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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, has not seen fit to immerse himself in any part of the ongoing dialog concerning the Washington Redskins and the issue of the franchise’s name , albeit it , that the subject, concerns one of the NFL’s most prominent teams, and one which draws a fan-base beyond the greater Maryland area , rather than it simply being close in proximity to the nation’s capital. Personally, I believe that the commissioner tends to be only drawn to battles that he believes that he can win , while his image and that of the league’s remains intact ! Here , it might well be the one real subject , that Roger Goodell may well feel, that no one can actually be victorious in. Yet, without his offering up any type of public comment, either directly from himself or from a spokesperson within his office , we will never know how he views this ongoing debate.

The idiocy here, does appears to be, that while Notah Begay seeks the Washington Redskins to bear some responsibility for what he believes to be some type of slight over the name of a franchise, that has been existence for over seven decades , but yet somehow he has not seen fit to question the lack of opportunities provided to his people by the US government , that comes by way of the Department of the Interior , headed by Sally Jewell . Be it the budgetary constraints placed on Jewell’s agency by the government or the very fact , that there is said to be high levels of corruption within the upper echelons of a number of Native American tribes, with regard to the disbursement of the revenues from the casinos, that were built on tribal lands, of which those profits are meant to be used on welfare programs for per capita , within the Native American population. Somehow, what oversight there is meant to be , by the DOI ,through the National Indian Gaming Commission is either nonexistent , or those heading that specific entity, are in collusion with those behind the ongoing corruption .

If Notah Begay can seemingly overlook that issue, merely to shift the focus from something that is far more acute and prevalent within his race . Then clearly, as a spokesperson for his people, he is doing them a great injustice and disservice with this current stance. Failures by a federal agency, are being overlooked , in order, that a subject, now being broached, albeit, that the echoes of that matter , is now being joined by other tribes, who feel , that now is time for the Redskins’ organization to discuss the issue of a name change. Either, they are completely happy with their treatment, as being meted out by the federal government , while having nothing better to do, than to now seek some type of recourse from a sport’s franchise, which in no way, was it responsible for their plight, as it now stands .

Mike Shanahan’s failures last season as the head coach of the Washington Redskins, were greatly magnified with the team falling apart at the seams and their being no leadership shown on or off the field of play. As to the idiocy, that the team’s quarterback , Robert Griffin III bore a great deal of responsibility for Redskins’ poor season and their 3-13 record within the NFC East , that led to the firing of Shanahan and several members of his coaching staff from last season. Dan Snyder and GM Bruce Allen , simply had enough of the ongoing incompetency of the former Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders’ head coach and the very fact that he sought not to discuss many of the team’s woes during the season. Furthermore, from a defensive and offensive standpoint, the Redskins were found wanting in just about every aspect of their game. That being said, Shanahan’s dismissal , while being viewed as the best thing that could have happened to the Washington Redskins, his successor might not bring on the same sort of exuberance and joy as would be first thought. The hiring of Jay Gruden might well be seen as a positive in some circles , but in reality, it could end up being as big a mistake, as Shanhan’s original hire alongside that of son, Kyle Shanahan as the team’s offensive coordinator. Never mind the fact , that Mike Shanahan was among the highest paid head coaches in the NFL , earning a reputed $7 million a year .

At the time of his firing, Shanahan , was still owed two years on the remainder of his five-year contract. Way too costly a mistake , for the type of incompetency shown by head coach in 2013. What might be even more exacerbating for the Redskins’ fans, was the very fact, that the team was coming off a postseason appearance and a divisional title in 2012 , with a belief that in 2013 , there would be a marked improvement in terms of their on the field performances . Instead, beyond the injuries , regression, lack of leadership and a lack of coaching acumen, all having played a part in the Washington Redskins’ fall from grace.

While Jay Gruden, has proven to be a great coaching assistant, having held several positions around the NFL during the course his career , as well as serving under his brother, now an ESPN analyst and commentator, Jon Gruden . It must be said, his being placed into the cauldron of being the head coach of one of the league’s more high profiled teams will bring about a great deal of scrutiny and with that a great deal of expectation . Jay Gruden, is likely to bring about a more aggressive style of play, with a more pass oriented offense , playing to the strengths of Robert Griffin III. However, with the team’s acquisition of DeSean Jackson, to go alongside incumbents , Alfred Morris, wide receivers Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan . The running and receiving game of the Redskins should see greater visibility this upcoming season than was witnessed in 2013. Defensively, the team will also have to show great deal more resilience than shown through much of last year , where the secondary left a great deal to be desired. For defensive and offensive coordinators, Jim Haslett and Sean McVay , their assessing the player personnel , will go a long way in determining, how Jay Gruden, is best likely to use his players this upcoming season.

While I have always believed, that NFL a franchise, should have a great backup to the starting quarterback. For the Washington Redskins, they should consider themselves extremely lucky, with the fact that they possess Kirk Cousins in that role. Cousins has proven to be a more than adequate substitute that position, but his ambitions are now, to be that of a starter and not in a secondary role to a player, he may well now be believe that he is now the equal of. Cousins, who was a fourth round draft pick in the 2012 NFL Draft , a class deemed to be and have been one of the best crop of quarterbacks to have entered the NFL over the past fifteen years. With their now being rumors circulating, that Kirk Cousins is desiring a trade, as the opportunities to be or remain a starter, are likely to be greatly diminished with a return to health of Robert Griffin. It will be interesting to see whether or not this opens up an opportunity for GM Bruce Allen to use the backup as trade bait , to move up the draft ladder, to gain a pick in the first round of the upcoming NFL Draft, having forfeited their original number two pick to the St Louis Rams. Certainly, there are likely to be a number of teams around the league, in need of a player with Kirk Cousins’ ability to assist with their pass offense.If Bruce Allen were to get a mid-first round pick in exchange for Kirk Cousins , then I believe, that some team , would be amenable to such an offer !

There may well have been a lot of criticism leveled at Robert Griffin III last season , much of it justified , as the player never fully recovered from his injuries. Yet, there seemed to be no concern by Mike Shanahan or his son , offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan , to have the offensive line actually , protect the quarterback , who just happens to be the team’s most valuable asset and face of the franchise and their long-term future. Granted, RGIII did himself no favors, by trying to be the hero, when all that was being asked of him, was to simply be conservative and play error free football over the course of the season . Looking back , it was plain for all to see that the sophomore quarterback, simply forgot what made him such a blistering talent in 2012 , and during the Redskins’ somewhat short postseason run of that year. If it is, Griffin’s intent to lead the team back to where he believes they belong, under the guidance of Jay Gruden and his staff, then the player will have to definitely raise the level of his play, to position himself as one of the best young quarterbacks in the league. The evidence was there for all to see in 2012 and I seriously doubt, that the former Baylor star would like to see a repeat of last season , once the 2014 Redskins’ season gets underway !

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In light of the points raised within this article, what thoughts if any, do you have concerning the stance now being taken by Notah Begay III and do you believe them to be misguided or actually , correct ? Also, how competitive do you think that the Washington Redskins will be, this upcoming season and are they likely to pose a serious threat to the other residents within the NFC East ? Do leave a response on this and anything else you believe to be pertinent to the subject and thanks as usual for your continued support of this site , as it is greatly appreciated !

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Picture and slideshow details below.

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(1) Native American Indians are seen here protesting in close proximity of Fedex Field in Landover, Maryland, the stadium in which Washington Redskins’ regular season games are played . Over the past five seasons , the strains of more tribes, thronging in support of this issue, has caught the nation’s attention , as well as that of the print and television media . However, the NFL hierarchy , has not issued a statement concerning the matter and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, simply has not discussed the matter at any great length in addressing the fans , press or members of any of the Native American tribes, voicing their concerns . Getty Images North America/ Ian Marks ….

(2) A late night vigil is held outside the Washington Redskins’ training facility in Richmond , Virginia by Native American Indians voicing their disapproval of the word ” Redskins” as the name of the NFL franchise . AP Photo / Isabel Hughes ….

(3) Washington Redskins’ owner , Dan Snyder, left , is seen here alongside the team’s general manager Bruce Allen as the two leave an official NFL function that discussed the scheduling of this past season’s NFL Superbowl staged at the Met-Life Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey . The tow executives are facing vocal opposition, with regard to the name of the NFL franchise which Native American Indians believe to be derisory and derogatory. Snyder has been very direct, in stating that the seven-decade old franchise will not make a name change, in light of the growing controversy. The NFL hierarchy have failed to discuss this matter directly , leaving it solely as a matter between the Redskins and dissenting Native American tribes. AP Photo / Chris Harper …

(4) Mike Shanahan , and his son , Kyle Shanahan are seen here along sidelines at Fedex Field , in Landover , Maryland during a regular season game last season . The pairing of father and son had a horrible season, as the 2012 defending NFC East champions fell apart , with the team ending their schedule with a 3-13 record in the division , and one of the worst records in the entire league in 2013. Both were dismissed by GM Bruce Allen, with the elder Shanahan still owed on the remainder of his then, existing contract. Kyle Shanahan has since rebounded , having signed on to become the offensive coordinator of the Cleveland Browns , which is currently coached by first time head coach Mike Pettine . Getty Images / Rob Porter ….

(5) From left to right , PGA Tour golfer , Mike Weir , Notah Begay III , Dr Mathura Santosham , Center Director of American Indians Healthcare Partners in association with Johns Hopkins Hospital , Ventura Lovato , Manager of the Vision Center for Native Americans , Tiger Woods and Camilo Villegas . Begay has been very vocal in his opposition and the use of the word Redskin , as used and depicted by NFL franchise the Washington Redskins . In recent weeks the former PGA Tour golfer, has withdrawn his charitable foundation, NB3 Foundation’s sponsorship of a celebrity pro-am golf tournament, where the franchise’s own foundation was a primary sponsor . The Washington Redskins’ Foundation in years earlier, had been a large donor to the NB3 Foundation as well as a co-sponsor of a number of nationwide health initiatives by Begay’s foundation. Getty Images North America / Rick Maslin ………..

(6) Department of Interior Secretary Sally Jewell is seen here being congratulated by her predecessor , Ken Salazar , as she began her term in 2012 during the second term of President Barack Obama . Jewell’s issues as head of this Federal Agency , has been one of dealing with rising crime on a number of tribal reservations , prolific drug use, among young teens, lack of educational opportunities at the collegiate level and that of widespread corruption within a number of Native American Tribes, as it relates to revenues derived from the gaming casinos. AP/REUTERS/ Max Sellars …….

(7) CLEVELAND OH,. DECEMBER 16th , 2012 . Injured Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) , left, and quarterback Kirk Cousins (12) sit on the bench late in the 4th quarter as the Washington Redskins defeat the Cleveland Browns 38 – 21 at Cleveland Browns Stadium in Cleveland OH, December 16, 2012 . Cousins , now believes that he is ready to become a starter in the NFL , having substituted for Robert Griffin III during the times that the incumbent, was sidelined by an injury . Both quarterbacks were picks by the Washington Redskins in the 2012 NFL Draft , for which there several players at the position who were seen as top-notch talent . Griffin was the number two quarterback taken behind Andrew Luck, who was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts , that year . Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post via Getty Images …..

(8) Wide receiver DeSean Jackson , having been waived by the Philadelphia Eagles , the player signed with divisional rivals the Washington Redskins , a four-year $32 million deal of which $16 million was guaranteed money . Jackson hopes to be productive addition to the Redskins’ offense and a likely target of Robert Griffin in what may well be a pass-oriented attack initiated by new head coach Jay Gruden . AP Photo/ Tom Carter ….

(9) Jay Gruden , head coach of the Washington Redskins is seen here alongside GM Bruce Allen after the much-traveled assistant speaks to the convened press at Fedex Field , in Landover , Maryland , having agreed to succeed Mike Shanahan , who was fired by the organization after a sub-par season in 2013. Gruden an experienced offensive coordinator, hopes to make the Redskins offense more potent , with his being a strong proponent of a pass offense , but that is not to state the effectiveness of Alfred Morris will not be used to add variety to the team’s offense. Gruden inherits a team that struggled throughout much of last season , much to the dissatisfaction of the Redskins fans and the front office , of which team owner , Dan Snyder , demanded that changes be made, after a disastrous 2013 schedule . The dismissal of Mike Shanahan still leaves the Washington Redskins owing the much maligned former head coach about $9.5 million , including incentives . AP Photo / Michael Warren ….

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” I said I’ll get to it in a moment , just let me pull on this fish for a minute as it’s what I’ll be having for dinner ” !

A season to behold or not ………… make a case ?

A season to behold or not ………… make a case ?

Well not much to report as week two of the NFL preseason will come to a close of tonight with the Pittsburgh Steelers taking on the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field in Washington , DC. For the Redskins , the talk has been whether or not the team`s sophomore quarterback Robert Griffin III and his head coach Mike Shanahan are on the same page in terms of the player`s recovery from knee surgery and is now back to full health . Shanahan does have cause for concern, because the loss of Griffin before the regular season has started , would be a devastating loss for a franchise that rebounded to have a very successful season , having won their division (NFC East) and making a playoff appearance . Undoubtedly, the fans will be expecting a great deal more in 2013 as the franchise looks to improve and prove that last year was no mere aberration.

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Griffin and his backup Kirk Cousins were able provide the Redskins with the type of offense offense that was lacking for so a ref= many years with the franchise. And with an effective running game provided by running back Alfred Morris . It does give credence to the fact that this team should be considered as one of the more credible franchises good enough within the NFC to be thought of as a serious contender for the Superbowl . Coming off a narrow 22-21 victory over the Tennessee Titans during which Washington exhibited no more than an adequate number of plays , giving Mike Shanahan and his staff a chance to assess a number of his starters as well as the young rookies acquired in the NFL Draft and a number of free agent acquisitions . By my own estimation, I believe that the Redskins will most certainly have to show a great deal of improvement in the team`s defense . It was a problem all season long for the franchise, giving up on average 377 yards per game ranking the team twenty eighth overall of the league`s thirty-two teams in 2012 . If that issue can be rectified, then we could very well see the very best of the Washington Redskins in 2013 .

For those young Redskins` rookies now seeking to make in impact , the preseason will be the chance for them show their worth to the organization as a whole . Aaron David , Jordan Reed , Phillip Thomas , Chris Thompson , Brandon Jenkins , Baccari Rambo and Jawan Jamison are seen as the players seeking to make that a reality. With games against the Buffalo Bills at home on the 24th August , before closing out their preseason exhibition against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa , Florida . The reigning NFC East champions would like nothing better than to close out their preseason on a winning note .

Mike Shanahan and his Washington Redskins will begin their regular season with a divisional clash against the Philadelphia Eagles , in a match-up that will be of vital meaning for both teams . In a televised Monday night game , it will be interesting to see who the starting quarterback will be for the Eagles , after what appears to be something of a season of mixed fortunes Chip Kelly`s contestants for the position for the opening day starter. There is seasoned veteran Michael Vick looking to answer the question , as to whether not he is still capable of leading a team, or second year player Nick Foles , who when called upon, has proven himself to be comfortable in the role as an NFL quarterback of note .

Chip Kelly can ill afford to start off this season with any type of indecision concerning his roster , after the upheavals that took place in 2012, leading to the departure of former head coach Andy Reid . Also , with Vick`s indecision , lack of leadership, but most of all, Reid`s insistence that his veteran quarterback was the best option in leading the team, was a clear indication as to how dire the situation was said to be. A 4-12 season with a fourth place finish in the NFC East pretty much summed up a disastrous 2012 for the Philadelphia Eagles . As to what the fans can expect of the team this season, will very much be predicated upon what the head coach can get out of his players by way of an all-out effort .

There is a continuing enigma surrounding the Chicago Bears` quarterback Jay Cutler . Often called a franchise caliber quarterback , this Pro Bowl player to my mind, has fallen far short of expectations . And in no way can Cutler be viewed as a leader , much less a player thought to be in the prime of his career or as one of the top ten quarterbacks in the NFL , since his entry into the league in 2006 , when he was drafted by the Denver Broncos as the eleventh overall pick in the first round that year . Though the Bears narrowly missed qualifying for the postseason in 2012, the continued knock against Jay Cutler has been the fact that his talents, belies his will to win. Excuses continue to be made for a player that remains amongst the highest paid players at his position in the NFL .

Sooner or later , it will be time for Cutler to either put up or simply shut up . This is a contract year, for the quarterback, who becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2014 and . It will certainly be interesting to see how Jay Cutler acquits himself this season for the Chicago Bears as the team seeks divisional supremacy over their rivals.

The Bears` 33-28 defeat of the San Diego Chargers for rookie head coach Marc Trestman was the baptism of fire for the well-respected former coordinator . Trestman replaces fired former head coach Lovie Smith . As to the reasons for the dismissal of Smith by Bear` GM Phil Emery , the explanations seem vague and somewhat ambiguous, to say the very least. Now while I believe the Chicago Bears to be a very good team , mainly because of a defense that has always been tenacious , and known for getting at an opposing quarterback and for their takeaways . It remains Cutler`s inconsistency to perform at a high level , and anemic passing offense that remains a blight for the team.

Marc Trestman and his coaching staff will have a great deal assess during this preseason , before the Bears embark upon their regular season schedule . Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte remain the main emphasis of an offense which I have already described as anemic after last season`s efforts. With the Bears being the guests of the Oakland Raiders in a game to be played at the O Coliseum in Oakland , California, as part the week three preseason schedule . A number of the Bears` starters and several players on the team`s depth chart are expected to see some playing time against Dennis Allen`s Raiders team . In what should prove to be a test of two teams looking to make some real inroads , as each seeks to raise the level of their play, in the build up to their regular season openers .

Chicago’s regular season opener will be against the Cincinnati Bengals at Soldier Field , in Chicago , Illinois,. For the Bengals and Marvin Lewis , this may well be the year in which this team can make even further strides, after making the postseason for the last two consecutive seasons . Andy Dalton remains one of the unheralded young quarterbacks to have been drafted in the NFL over the past four seasons . It has been his play that has spawned the resurrection of this franchise during the time-span in question. Dalton`s performances in conjunction with the play of A J Green and Jermaine Gresham , that have been one of the more pleasant surprises in watching the Bengals , and the trio could very well prove to be a mainstay of the franchise for years to come .

It would be fair to suggest that for the better part of his career Brian Urlacher was a mainstay of the Bears` defense . A future Hall of Fame inductee, the player was not re-signed to a contract extension this off-season . Rather than seeking to play elsewhere in spite of is anger at being discarded by the only organization he has ever played for. Urlacher formally announced his retirement and is likely to be hired by one of the major broadcast or cable networks to provide his analysis and insight on the game .

It is not inexplicable to understand how a team such as the Detroit Lions can go from being a franchise on the rise in 2011 to a club that simply regressed in 2012 ending that season with 4-12 record within the NFC North . One could say that the abrasiveness of head coach Jim Schwartz and the lack of leadership from Matt Stafford played a part in the elements of a dismal season last year . Granted, a prolific offense remained on show last season, with the Lions averaging over 400 yards of offense per game , third only to the New England Patriots and New Orleans Saints . Yet, what those three teams had in common was a porous defense that simply could not stop any type of offense challenge thrown against them under any circumstance.

Matt Stafford for is part, in 2012, simply put up gaudy numbers in terms of total yardage in a season , throwing for over 4900 yards , failing to break the 5,000 yard threshold by a mere thirty-three yards. The tandem of Stafford and wide receiver Calvin Johnson would however, go on to break the single season receiving yardage mark , once held by Jerry Rice , a record (1,848yds) that withstood assaults for seventeen years , until it was surpassed in 2012 , with Johnson`s mark of 1,964 yards. While I am not against the singular achievement of an individual in a team context, I do believe that you win and lose as a team ! Those feats, while exemplary, mean absolutely nothing if at the end of season , all that the team will be remembered for , is finishing with a sub 500 record and firmly rooted at the bottom of your division. I can categorically state that both Matt Stafford and Calvin Jonson would have traded their single season achievements, if it guaranteed the Detroit Lions a berth in the 2012 postseason !

Jim Schwartz and the Lions were lackadaisical in their 24-6 lopsided defeat to the Cleveland Browns , in a game that we know not to be meaningful . Yet, it gave cause for concern, as the Lions` defense seemed to overly complacent , missing several assignments during the contest . Once again, bringing into question, whether or not Nick Fairley and Ndamokung Suh can been seen as the lynch pins of this defense for the long-term sustainability of this franchise ? ? Certainly during the regular season both of these players should be capable of raising the level of their game, yet it remains somewhat doubtful, if Sunday`s game is anything to go by. Given the respective salaries of Fairley and Suh, I would hate to think that both contracts have been a complete waste !

The acquisition of Reggie Bush gives Matt Stafford another weapon out of the backfield, as well as a running back, who when capable, is usually productive . But I can`t help but wonder, if Bush at this stage of his career is still motivated enough to produce at the highest level possible !. In New Orleans and Miami , he simply failed to meet the expectations sought and it is quite possible , that he may well fail here with the Detroit Lions . Yet only time will tell, and the actual hunger of the seasoned running back to make a return to the postseason and show the world what he is actually capable of doing .

Detroit will begin its regular season schedule with a game against divisional rivals the Minnesota Vikings and reigning league MVP Adrian Peterson . Ford Field in Detroit ,Michigan, is likely to be packed to rafters for a divisional match-up that pits two of the NFC`s more robust teams. Leslie Frazier , head coach of the Vikings, will be hoping that starting quarterback Christian Ponder can lead this team with a great deal of authority and maturity over the course of the season. The NFC North is likely to be a division that sees the Green Bay Packers quite possibly making a successful defense of their title under head coach Mike McCarthy and his singular minded quarterback Aaron Rodgers . All roads to the division, may have to pass through Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin,.

Stanley Kroenke , in an article in the magazine Sports Illustrated , has been described as the one of the most powerful men in all of North American sports . Granted , unimaginable wealth , as a member of Forbes` 400 List of Richest Americans . does bring along its privileges and notoriety . Kroenke`s sports interests through his Kroenke Sports Enterprises owns the St Louis Rams , Colorado Avalanche , Colorado Rapids , Arsenal FC of the Premiership (EPL) as well as the majority stake owner of Dick`s Sporting Goods chain. Of late, there has been mounting criticism of Kroenke and his ownership of the English soccer team. However , it should be noted that his original overtures to buy an initial 15% of the team, was warmly welcomed by the board members . In gradually raising his stake in Arsenal over an eighteen month period to above 28%, Stanley Kroenke was legally obliged to inform the London Stock Exchange of the raising of his stake in the soccer club , as is required by UK law, when there is intent to mount a bid to purchase a publicly listed company. .

Yet , Kroenke`s wish to own a majority stake was not about to take a backseat , as he has seen fellow prominent North American sports` franchise owners enter into the English soccer market over the past several years snapping up teams , primarily to maximize their investment . Franchise values for North American sports` teams are on the rise and their values are far greater than that of their British and European counterparts. Yet those values, are not appreciating as fast as those across the Atlantic. Now while the NFL , MLB , NBA and NHL do have a global presence. By comparison, soccer simply dominates the global scene as the most popular sport on the planet . It has been this realization that has led to John Henry of the Boston Red Sox , Stanley Kroenke , Malcolm Glazer and Shahid Khan to now take aim in purchasing a number of the top teams in the Premiership .

The regular season opener in the Premiership, saw Arsenal entertain Aston Villla at their palatial home of Emirates Stadium , in North London. The game itself, would be a humiliating event for the hosts, as the team was simply outclassed 3-1 in what turned out to be a very lopsided affair . Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger was left at a loss for words , as to the reasons behind his side`s defeat . The fans responded, calling for the head of Stanley Kroenke and the very fact , that since his installation as the club`s owner , very little has been done to improve the team`s roster by way of acquiring any major players .

I am not about to suggest that Kroenke`s tenure of the soccer franchise will be short-lived , but I do believe that if as he states , it is his wish to bring some success to Arsenal . Then his first act, will be to open up is pocket , rather than creating the perception that he is simply another North American sports` franchise owner , simply being a predator, on the loose seeking to make a monetary profit from is investment , while not seeking to make that team a competitive entity. Lessons have obviously not been learned from the disastrous ownership of Liverpool FC , which was placed into receivership (UK bankruptcy proceedings) after then owners Tom Hicks and Ken Gillette simply laden that club with a mountain of debt . With the team, now debt-free, and under the ownership of John Henry and his Fenway Sports Management Group , the soccer club is now in a much better financial standing and considered to be contender for major domestic and European trophies over the course of the season .

The St Louis Rams are stuck in division , where two of the NFC`s best teams from last season now reside. It would pretty much safe to say that the NFC West will remain a two-horse this year between the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks , with the Rams and Arizona Cardinals , likely to be left on the outside looking in . St Louis has started off its preseason schedule under a cloud, having gone win-less in their first two games . Starting quarterback , Sam Bradford now entering his fourth season as a passer in the league, is slowly acclimatizing himself to the rigors of the game. Unfortunately, for the player , coaching upheavals instigated by the front office , have not created a great working environment under which Bradford can operate in his role. Jeff Fisher , having succeeded Steve Spagnuolo , as the Rams` head coach, will now seek to reinvigorate the attitude of this team while also seeking the input of his young quarterback.

Rams` EVP & COO Kevin Demoff and GM Les Snead , working in conjunction with Jeff Fisher and his coaching staff have drafted the players they feel can best complement a roster that must now strive to make a great deal of improvement in 2013 . Closing out their preseason schedule with wins against the Denver Broncos and Baltimore Ravens would be the best way place themselves in the right frame of mind, with the regular season a little over two weeks away. Sam Bradford has to now take command and prove himself a leader of this Rams team.

At its core, this is an extremely group of players that Jeff Fisher will lead into this season , with but a mere handful of players with more than five years of NFL experience . As to what that indicates by way of what Stanley Kroenke seeks to do in terms of the expenditure made by way of the team`s payroll, can be best summed up by the events now taking place across the Atlantic with his other sport`s interest there , Premiership soccer club , Arsenal . Kroenke may well have made is billions by making some very shrewd in investments and by way many of the outside interests of Kroenke Sports Enterprises, not concerned with the professional sports` teams. Yet no one can deem to think it possible that the Rams can seek any type of success when you have an owner , who would rather rest on his laurels, by way of the teams acquired and the ancillary services provided by is company, without there now being any type of tangible on-field success to show for it all .

St Louis will kick of its regular season schedule with a home game at the Edward Jones Dome Stadium in St Louis , Missouri , against the Arizona Cardinals led by Carson Palmer and their highly respected wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald . Both teams will be looking at this match-up as a real test of their competitive acumen, as well seeking to obtain first blood in the first of their two divisional meetings in 2013.

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Picture gallery .

This NFL season could very well have a great deal in store for the fans . In light of all of the adverse news that the league has been encompassed with as of late, as a fan of the game, I am hopeful that the teams are able to provide us with the best entertainment possible ! Your thoughts, on this all, simply offer up a comment as you see fit.

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Picture and slideshow gallery details .
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(1) Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Bruce Gradkowski (5) runs away from Washington Redskins linebacker Darryl Tapp (54) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game on Monday, Aug. 19, 2013, in Landover, Md. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky …

(2) Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) listens to the play calls on a radio while on the sidelines during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Monday, Aug. 19, 2013, in Landover, Md. The Redskins defeated the Steelers 24-13 . AP Photo/Nick Wass ….

(3) Redskins` head coach Mike Shanahan speaks to his young quarterback Robert Griffin III . The player taken, was the team`s number one draft pick in the 2012 NFL Draft , and has proven to be an team immediate success with fans and the entire organization , with the rookie putting up exemplary numbers in his first full season in the NFL, in 2012 . AP Photo / Patrick Masters ……

(4) Philadelphia Eagles’ Michael Vick, left, is tackled by Carolina Panthers defensive end Wes Horton during the first half of a preseason NFL football game , Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Philadelphia. AP Photo/Matt Rourke ….

(5) Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton , left, and Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick meet after a preseason NFL football game, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Philadelphia. Philadelphia won 14-9 . AP Photo/Matt Rourke ….

(6) Chicago Bears defensive end Shea McClellin (99) sacks San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (17) during the first half of the preseason NFL football game , Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Chicago. Rivers loses the ball which was recovered by Bears safety Major Wright on the play . AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast …..

(7) Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) gets sacked by San Diego Chargers defensive end Corey Liuget (94) during the first half of the preseason NFL football game, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Chicago. AP Photo/Jim Prisching ….

(8) Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush (21) runs away from Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Desmond Bryant in the second quarter of a preseason NFL football game Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Cleveland. The Browns defeated the Lions n 24-6 . AP Photo/Tony Dejak ….

(9) Calvin Johnson (81) left is congratulated by teammate , Matthew Stafford of the Detroit Lions . The Lions` wide receiver would surpass Jerry Rice`s single season receiving yardage mark of 1,848 , set in 1995 , on his way to setting a new record mark of 1,964yards last season . Johnson believes that he is capable of surpassing the 2,000 receiving yards` mark. Yet, singular achievements while glorious, means absolutely nothing, when the team is not winning games . As evidenced with the Lions` menial record of 4-12 and a last place finish in the always competitive NFC North . AP Photo / Greg Goulding …..

(10) Stanley Kroenke , majority stakeholder in the famed North London Premiership soccer club , Arsenal FC , is now under siege after the team`s inauspicious start to the 2013-2014 season in the Barclays Premier League (EPL) . The team lost 3-1 to Aston Villa in rather humiliating fashion . Leading many to believe, that Kroenke is simply disinterested in the success of the team but more concerned over its value and the very fact that it is also one of most profitable soccer clubs and professional sports` franchises in the world . Arsenal fans are outraged with the entire board and its unwillingness to spend money to bring in new players . The soccer club has a number of lucrative deals that nets , in excess of $ 250 million annually . In is private life it should also be noted that Stanley Kroenke is married to Ann Walton-Kroenke , daughter and heiress of the late Sam Walton , founder of the Walmart chain of stores, the world`s largest retailer . The Guardian UK / Nigel Armstrong ….

(11) Head coach Jeff Fisher of the St. Louis Rams watches from the sidelines alongside defensive tackle Kendall Langford (98) and quarterback Sam Bradford (8) during the game against the Washington Redskins at Edward Jones Dome on September 16, 2012 in St Louis, Missouri. Getty Images North America /Jamie Squire ……..

(12) Carl Jenkinson of Arsenal tackles Fabian Delph a of Aston Villa during the Barclays Premier League(EPL) match between Arsenal and Aston Villa at Emirates Stadium on August 17, 2013 in London, England. Villa would go on to defeat Arsenal 3-1 in the Gunners` opening game of the 2013-14 Premiership season . Getty Images Europe / Clive Mason ….

(13) Theo Walcott (left) of Arsenal avoids Antonio Luna of Aston Villa during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Aston Villa at Emirates Stadium on August 17, 2013 in London, England. Getty Images Europe /Clive Mason ….

(14) Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger looks on prior to the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium on December 18, 2011 in Manchester, England. Getty Images Europe/ Alex Livesey …….

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tophatal …………………… 08/19/2013

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Premier League (EPL) official home site and EPL news

Profile of Arsenal FC and Arsenal`s official news` site .

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NFL news and news from around the league

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2013 NFL Draft prospects

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Hot chic image of the day Katee Owen .

It’s A Man’s World But In The NFL …. Money And Its Image Is Are The Only Things That Actually Count And Matter …….. !

It’s A Man’s World But In The NFL …. Money And Its Image Is Are The Only Things That Actually Count And Matter …….. !

By tophatal ………….

It’s said to be a man’s game but somehow it may well have been lost on the staff of Sean Payton , the head coach of the New Orleans Saints . The NFL hierarchy is said to be conducting an ongoing investigation that would suggest that bounty scheme orchestrated by the team’s then defensive coordinator Gregg Williams that would reward defensive players on the roster monetary rewards either maiming of incapacitating an opposing player during a regular season game . Such has been the uproar and palpable of the suggestion that a coach would be actually rewarding his players to harm the members on an opposing roster.

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Slide show for your perusal .

Payton is said to be unaware of this all but I somehow find that to be a complete lie ! There’s no way in hell that a head coach could be made unaware of such a scheme unless he chose to ignore what has been blatantly obvious for even the naked eye to witness . Williams was the defensive coordinator for the Saints from 2008 to 2011 before accepting a similar role with the St Louis Rams at the culmination of the 2011 season . Gregg Williams has since apologized to the NFL and the Saints hierarchy for his ill-advised scheme and the ramifications of this outrageous act . Now for those who took umbrage with the fallout of Bill Belichick’s actions that led to the “Spygate scandal “ and then Spygate II . If they felt that the Patriots coach’s actions were egregious then I would seriously like to know how they must feel about the actions of the Saints and specifically the actions of Greg Williams while he was a member of the organization’s coaching staff ?

One such incident was a game that involved the New Orleans and Rams in a regular season scheduled match-up that would see then Ram’s quarterback Kurt Warner knocked from the game as the player would suffer a grade 2 concussion which would leave him dazed and confused for several days of what Warner , himself would later suggest in a public interview the hits it was a legitimate one by Saints’ defensive player Darren Sharper . Warner suffered a concussion in that game but would later have post-game headaches and was sought medical supervision by the Rams . The Saints’ defensive player was quick to deny that anything done or perceived to be committed by his teammates was anything but legitimate during the time period suggested and he remains adamant in that fact . But that in of-itself doesn’t speak well , when one considers the actions and the formal apology issued by Greg Williams . So either the player is looking to placate himself from any actions by way any punishment that is expected to be meted out by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell .

Commissioner Goodell hasn’t issued a formal statement beyond claiming that the hierarchy is said to be investigating these claims . However , it is believed that heavily penalized sanctions will be levied against the New Orleans Saints and their former assistant defensive coordinator. Williams could face possible suspension and a monetary fine , while being an employee with the St Louis Rams . His former team , the New Orleans Saints could face even stiffer penalties which may include a forfeiture of draft picks , stiff monetary penalties as well as a formal reprimand by the league hierarchy in terms of the franchise bringing the game into disrepute. This all speaks boldly as to the seriousness of the issue at hand and how it is being viewed by the NFL .

I’ve always maintained that the NFL (league hierarchy) itself has done little to protect the safety and well-being of the players until recently . Much of this has come down to the fact that the hierarchy has never looked upon the issue of injuries such as concussions , blunt force trauma as anything more than a small bye product of the game . Bear in mind that such seasoned veterans who have served the game ____ many current and former players have been seriously injured by such incidents . Hall of Famer ….. Troy Aikman’s career was cut short by repeated concussions which caused the player to have short-term memory lapses . Consider also in 2011 the Cleveland Browns’ quarterback Colt McCoy and the injury that he suffered during a regular season game against the Pittsburgh Steelers and the lack of action by the organization’s training staff in treating the player in the appropriate fashion . And do we really need to be reminded the circumstances under which Dave Duerson and Mike Webster died when one bears in mind their ongoing health issues at the time of their death ? Needless to say the idiots who continue to suggest that this is a game for men are so ignorant to ignore the facts that are there to be seen . Try to now placate that as nothing more than an over reaction if you can ?

The denials by the league hierarchy smacks of the stupidity shown by the NFL over the years even in light of the in-depth of the clear medical evidence from the studies conducted by NIMH , AMA , Harvard School of Medicine and & Neuro Sciences , Yale School of Medicine , Harvard School of Medicine , American Academy & Fellowship of Neurology & Medicine and the Stanford School of Medicine & Neurological Sciences . What might be even more egregious is the very fact that the league’s own in-house studies by conducted by paid medical professionals questioned the veracity of the evidence provided by these esteemed places of academia . Furthermore , with the idiocy also shown by the NFLPA under the then leadership of Gene Upshaw , you can simply understand how and why neither the league or union (NFLPA) cannot be trusted to act with any degree of integrity .

Even now , Roger Goodell and his union counterpart DeMaurice Smith only pay this issue lip service , albeit that during their much disputed labor lockout , surreptitiously $1,000,000,000 ($1 billion) was set aside to aid retired NFL veterans with assistance in denied medical benefits that were long overdue . And it should be noted that for league veterans who were members of the NFLPA prior to 1974 they were only guaranteed medical benefits only in their careers in the NFL covered continuously three years . That somehow doesn’t equate adequately when you considered how much of an effort was contributed to the game by such veterans , only for the contributions to have been denounced by the late Upshaw as not of being his concern at the time , while he was the union’s executive director. Goodell for his and that of his predecessor Paul Tagliabue sided with the evidence provided by the medical professionals hired by the league as to the cause and effect of blunt force trauma and concussions as to having no bearing upon the injuries suffered by NFL players . Have you ever heard anything so asinine in all of your life ? And we’re led to believe that these individuals still have the best interests t of the game and the players’ safety at heart ? That’s utter bullshit !

If it is Roger Goodell’s intent to send a shot across the bow of the NFL and specifically to the teams , their coaches and coaching assistants that such egregious acts will not be tolerated . Then he had better make sure that the punishment meted out cannot be seen as a slap on the wrist as was the case in terms of actions levied against Bill Belichick in the aftermath of the “Spygate Scandal “ . Nothing more than a $ 250,000 fine for the coach and a $500,000 monetary penalty for the franchise seems paltry when one considers the tens of million of dollars in revenues derived by the New England Patriots annually ! But then again the team’s owner Robert Kraft along with Jerry Jones and Tom Benson were three of the main protagonists who supported and put Goodell’s name forward as the successor to Paul Tagliabue as the NFL Commissioner . And the league hierarchy made of the NFL team owners simply went along with that proposal and the rest as they say is history . Needless to say , you can read into the decision rendered by Roger Goodell as it related to “Spygate” whatever way you like but at the end of the day you can’t help but wonder whether or not this was simply the commissioner’s way of telling Belichick ….” don’t let this happen again ” .

The NFL’s investigation has now expanded to cover Williams’ tenure with the Washington Redskins where in that capacity he held the defensive coordinator’s position from 2004-07 and where several defensive players have spoken openly as to the fact that a similar reward incentive had been put into place by the coach . Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs was in his second tenure as the head coach of the franchise , where he won multiple Superbowls . Gibbs in a candidate statement has gone on the record in a public address maintaining that he was unaware as to any bounty (head-hunter) system by the players on the roster at the time . I suppose when you’re winning or showing signs and some semblance of being consistent then things such as this tends to be ignored . But then again , I may well be wrong or I might not ? Like I said , I hardly believe that Williams has been the only coach to adopt such a policy with an NFL franchise ! It all comes down to not being caught but when things about and the franchise is revealed things are seen in a whole new light .

As to Gregg Williams and his now less than what appears to be a contrite apology seems to be meaningless after the fact ! Especially when one considers the events that are said to have taken place and how we ought to determine the number of players that may well have been injured over the course of time that the practice was in place and being adhered by the players on the New Orleans Saints’ roster . Now it’d be remiss to suggest also that the Saints might be the only franchise in the NFL that may well have put this sort of practice into place as an incentive for their players . I mean it simply didn’t take all that long for Belichick protege` Josh McDaniels to follow in the footsteps of his mentor and repeat the very same actions while a head coach of the Denver Broncos . His subsequent denials and lying to Broncos’ owner Pat Bowlen about the incident summarily led to his dismissal along with the abysmal season that the franchise had in 2010 . There’s not much left to be said after that is there ?

From my own perspective I feel that the NFL has been mute and redundant in clearly showing that it cares about the health and well-being of their players current and past ! It speaks volumes to the fact when it has been only recently that they sought to be proactive after the years of evidence that was there for the league hierarchy to view . And I am now to believe that the league much less the commissioner now actually has a damn backbone ? I mean you tell me after their lack of inaction over the years only now be dragged kicking and in screaming in order for them to actually stand up and take a stance . As of yet the league itself and the union having agreed upon the proposal of testing for steroids and other PED’s have yet to put this mandate into practice after it was agreed upon in the collective bargaining agreement . Now with two select House Committees ( Energy and Commerce & House Oversight & Gov’t Reform Committee ) now once again questioning the NFL’s intent it makes you wonder what the hell is now actually going on during the tenure of Roger Goodell ?

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have concerning the salient points raised within this piece and what actions if any do you believe should be taken against Gregg Williams and the New Orleans Saints ? Simply leave a comment as you deem fit .

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(1) Gregg Williams ,left, and Saints’ head coach Sean Payton are seen here during a team workout . The former Saints’ assistant has now come under a cloud of suspicion with a “player bounty system” wherein defensive players on the team’s roster were rewarded with financial incentives to take apparently “take out” opposing offensive players during a game . The New Orleans Saints and Washington Redskins are now under investigation for the apparent scheme said to have been initiated by Williams . Penalties are said to be adjudged by Roger Goodell should there be any veracity to the claims. Gregg Williams has indeed apologized to the league and his former organizations where was employed . He now holds the defensive coordinator’s position with the St Louis Rams . AP Photo /Chris Hendricks ….

(2) Williams (background) is seen here with then head coach Joe Gibbs at the Washington Redskins’ training facility in Ashburn , Virginia . The NFL hierarchy is currently conducting an investigation of both the Redskins and Saints concerning the allegations that have risen from a scheme initiated by Gregg Williams. Getty Images/ Elise Amendola ….

(3) Running back Marshawn Lynch (24) of the Seattle Seahawks runs for a 67-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter as Darren Sharper (42) of the New Orleans Saints misses a tackle during the 2011 NFC wild-card playoff game at Qwest Field on January 8, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. Getty Images North America / Johnathan Ferrey …..

(4) The CBA is it really worth the paper it’s written on ? Your thoughts ? NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (L) and NFLPA Executive Director Demaurice Smith hold up the NFL’s new 10-year Collective Bargaining Agreement at the Pro Football Hall of Fame August 5, 2011 in Canton, Ohio. Getty Images / Jason Miller ….
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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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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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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

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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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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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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 ……..

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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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NFL News

Minnesota Vikings

Minnesota Vikings front office

Minnesota Vikings roster

Minnesota Vikings’ coaching staff

Minnesota Vikings’ 2011 Draft order

Minnesota Vikings 2011 schedule

NBA News

NBA Playoffs 2011

NBA Playoff Picture team draws

Boston Celtics — vs New York Knicks’ playoff series

You’re Only As Good As Your Last Game ……. Unfortunately If Your Last Game Was Good As The Ones That’ve Been Played By The Cavaliers and Wizards Then Than That’s Not Saying A Great Deal ………….. !

You’re Only As Good As Your Last Game ……. Unfortunately If Your Last Game Was Good As The Ones That’ve Been Played By The Cavaliers and Wizards Then Than That’s Not Saying A Great Deal ………….. !

I’m sorry but being an avid NBA fan I’ve always loved the spirit of competition and that goes through a whole litany of sports that I’ve either grown up participating in or watching from afar. At present but there’s no other way to explain it but there really are some god-damn awful teams in the league at present . And it’s clearly down to the lack of real quality coaches in the NBA and the very fact that in large part many of the players simply aren’t that good.

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At present the two worst teams in the league record wise are Minnesota Timberwolves (11-30) and the preposterously bad Cleveland Cavaliers (8-39). I’m sorry but not even Byron Scott can now coach this team out of the mess that they’re in. Cavaliers’ owner Dan Gilbert may well have made the fans in Cleveland a promise that a NBA title banner would be raised inside the Quicken Loans Arena before LeBron James and the Miami Heat would be a led to title by the former Cavaliers’ player. And I know that as of late the Heat have had their problems in the league with a number of setbacks and the fact that their triumvirate of James , Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade have suddenly become injury prone and the very fact that the team’s —- productivity has been a little inconsistent . Well it won’t hide the fact that they’re still one of the teams to beat in the Eastern Conference .

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra I’ve no doubt is a capable coach and will right the ship and I can see them contending . The same however cannot be said of the Cavaliers as they descend into an abyss of mediocrity. There’s not been enough that can be said about this team as they have lost 20 consecutive games . And if you thought that statistic was bad then you’ve only got to simply look at the team’s statistics to see how bad things have really become for the organization as a whole. Even with a veteran such as Antawn Jamison on board the Cavaliers simply hasn’t had an answer for any of their opponents that they’ve met this season.

It goes without saying that the only hope that the Cleveland Cavaliers may now have is to go for broke and simply just “tank the season” in the hope that they can earn one of the top picks in the 2011 NBA Draft. And with there being such an abundance of talent in the college ranks namely Kemba Walker , Jared Sullinger , Darius Morris , Marcus Morris , Jimmer Fredette , and Kyle Singler amongst a litany young college players who’ll be looking to make their mark at the professional level. It may well on appearance not be such a bad thing were the Cavaliers to go down that particular path. At this juncture I’m wondering also how Dan Gilbert’s demeanor has to be doing . In an offseason where he berates LeBron James for abandoning the team , I find it mildly amusing that much of this could have been avoided had both parties involved acted with common courtesy rather than letting this idiotic play out in public for their own personal consumption !

Now while no one can deny that John Wall had a stellar collegiate career with the Kentucky Wildcats but his career thus far with the Washington Wizards (13-35) has been anything but average at best. And while praise has been heaped upon the player I can’t help but feel that they’re simply not good enough to be even competitive within the Southeast Division of the Eastern Conference. A number one overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft Wall was seen as the corner piece of this team with him perhaps working in part alongside Gilbert Arenas . But alas, that wasn’t to be as the seasoned veteran was shipped off to the Orlando Magic as part of a multi-player multi-team deal .

Say what you will but the Wizards’ fans in attendance at the Verizon Center in Washington , DC can’t have envisaged this all unfolding as a spectacle in front of their very eyes. Their season has been bad enough as it is with the inconsistency playing to all facets of the Wizards’ game . And with what has taken place with the Washington Redskins and their rather mundane season under the tenure of Mike Shanahan , Kyle Shanahan and that rather mediocre coaching staff , in truth one could have a great deal of sympathy for the fans in the nation’s capitol. It’s not as if the Washington Nationals were about to provide them with any solace whatsoever. Although the fans are holding out for a change in fortunes for the team this upcoming season at the Nationals Ballpark . I’d say at this moment in time they’d be better off praying for hell to freeze over first before they can see any of the three teams in question actually turn themselves into championship contenders.

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I’m not so sure as to what needs to be done in order for the Washington Wizards to be competitive. From a coaching standpoint this young roster needs to learn as much as they can as fast as they can if they’re to show any semblance of progress . And that’s the real task that Flip Saunders is now facing even with the assistance of his coaching staff led by Randy Wittman and former NBA player Sam Cassell . If this staff cannot get this Wizards’ team heading in the right direction then to my mind then the turnaround in fortunes that they seek won’t be happening anytime soon ! And that will be to the embarrassment of the Wizards’ front office , GM Ernie Grunfeld and that of principal managing partner Ted Leonsis .

Now when these two teams meet at the Verizon Center I’d certainly like to think that the NBA hierarchy won’t have the temerity to make this part of the national broadcast or through their cable broadcast on their own in-house provider NBA Tv . As poor as the two teams have been playing I certainly don’t think that the nation ought to have to endure such garbage ! Simply put , this will do absolutely nothing to enhance the brand of the NBA , certainly not the brand and product that has given us Jordan , Kareem , Malone , Ewing , Magic Johnson , the 95-96 Bulls’ team and a slew of other NBA greats !

As an avid fan of the game just like any other NBA fan I’d prefer to see competitive games with levels of dexterity and athleticism . Unfortunately when the Cavaliers and Wizards meet on Sunday 13 th February that’s unlikely to happen ! Somehow I think at this juncture I’m sure that David Stern is looking for options if not a chance perhaps to ask that both teams simply settle the result of the game by playing checkers rather than subjecting the nation to this particular form of mediocrity on an NBA basketball court .

What thoughts if any do you have on the NBA season and the woefully inept form of the teams lumbering at the bottom of their respective divisions ? Simply chime in with your thoughts on this topic and any other as it relates to the NBA .

Alan aka tophatal

Picture and slide show details immediately below .

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(1)Memphis Grizzlies’ Zach Randolph, right, knocks the ball away from Minnesota Timberwolves’ Kevin Love in the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, in Minneapolis. Randolph was charged with a foul on the play. AP Photo/Jim Mone ……….

(2) Minnesota Timberwolves’ Darko Milicic, center, of Serbia, crouches between Memphis Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol, left, of Spain, and Sam Young in the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, in Minneapolis. AP Photo/Jim Mone ….

(3) Danny Granger (33) of the Indiana Pacers shoots against Christian Eyenga (8) of the Cleveland Cavaliers at The Quicken Loans Arena on February 2, 2011 in Cleveland, Ohio. Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images ……

(4)Fans hope for the end of the Cleveland Cavaliers losing streak, in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, in Cleveland. The Cavaliers continued a disappointing season, losing 117-112 to the Pacers, as the streak reached 22 straight. I’d like to think that the Cavaliers’ fans have now become very much more appreciative of the team’s losing streak and their continued mediocre effort being shown on the court ? AP Photo/Mark Duncan …….

(5)Cleveland Cavaliers’ Manny Harris shoots against Indiana Pacers’ Mike Dunleavy, right, in the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, in Cleveland. The Pacers won 117-112 to hand the Cavaliers their 22nd straight loss. AP Photo/Mark Duncan …..

(6) Cleveland Cavaliers coach Byron Scott, center, is flanked by his coaching staff, from left, Paul Pressey, Chris Jent, Jamahl Mosley and Joe Prunty , Monday September 27th 2010 at the team’s training facility in Independence ,Ohio ,. Picture courtesy of Associated Press .

(7) Alonzo Gee (33) of the Cleveland Cavaliers drives against the Indiana Pacers at The Quicken Loans Arena on February 2, 2011 in Cleveland, Ohio. Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images ……

(8) Washington Wizards point guard John Wall walks onto the court at the end of a timeout in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Hornets in New Orleans, Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011. Wall shot two for 11 with four points in Washington’s 97-89 loss to New Orleans. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky ………..

(9) Washington Wizards head coach Flip Saunders reacts to an official’s call in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Hornets in New Orleans, Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011. New Orleans defeated Washington 97-89. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky ……

(10) Washington Wizards guard Nick Young, right, shoots over New Orleans Hornets forward Jason Smith during the second half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011. New Orleans defeated Washington 97-89, despite a game-high 30 points from Young. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky ……..

(11) LeBron James smiles as he’s introduced to the crowd at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School with owner Dan Gilbert, left, general manager Danny Ferry, second from the left, and coach Mike Brown, second from the right. In happier times the quartet saw untold success from a competitive and financial standpoint but the past offseason led to a tumultuous upheaval with Danny Ferry re-signing as general manager , Mike Brown being fired and as we all know James left the Cavaliers to ply his trade elsewhere with the Miami Heat. Gus Chan / The Plain Dealer ….

(12) Billionaire internet and media mogul Ted Leonsis the principal owner of the Washington Wizards as well as the NHL’s —- Washington Capitals . Leonsis and his partners bought the Wizards from the late Abe Pollin and his family . Courtesy of The Washington Post/ Getty Images/ Christian Hascher …………

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NB: Click on the links shown below to read the latest news and views around the NBA .

NBA News ……………

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Junk-in-the-trunk

Eye candy ………………. Meet ‘Biscuits’ whose assets seem to be very well rounded wouldn’t you say ?

Continue reading “You’re Only As Good As Your Last Game ……. Unfortunately If Your Last Game Was Good As The Ones That’ve Been Played By The Cavaliers and Wizards Then Than That’s Not Saying A Great Deal ………….. !”

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 .

Click here for the latest NFL news …….

Click here for the for the NFL results from Week 15

NFL Standings ……. By Conference

By Division

By League

😉 —- 😛

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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Press Play Or Rewind ……….

Press Play Or Rewind ……….

Well the NBA ___ season though not yet in full swing has given us a great deal to contend with and to discuss. Washington Wizards’ rookie point guard John Wall has already set himself apart from the rest of this season’s rookies with a grand entrance by posting a triple double in the team’s first win of the season. And if the player’s exhilirating displays are anything to go by then fans attending the Verizon Center in Washington DC will be in for a treat for much of the season.

Wizards’ coach Flip Saunders has got to be encouraged with the effort put forth by the young rookie who seems to be showing a growth and maturity far beyond his young years. And indeed the front office of the organization led by team President Ernie Grunfeld, VP of Basketball Operations Tommy Sheppard and VP of Player Personnel Milt Newton must feel a sense of justification in making Wall the number one overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft . And while there can be no denying that the team will undergo some growing pains as the team tries to acclimatize itself with the offseason changes made within the organization it has to be said that this start may well augur well for the Wizards and the faith shown in John Wall .

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Now as we all know with the recent moves that took place within the Eastern Conference of the NBA wherein everything seemed to have revolved around the acquisitions of Chris Bosh and LeBron James by the Miami Heat made everything else pale into insignificance. So much so, that even with the New York Knicks acquiring Amar’e Stoudemire with Shaquille O’Neal and Jermaine O’Neal now finding a home with the Boston Celtics. All the fervor and furore seems to be about what happens within the conference and whether or not the Heat can seemingly led what many NBA analysts will be a ceremonial romp and anointing of the team as NBA champions .

With Gilbert Arenas due to make an imminent return it will be interesting to see how the seasoned veteran deals with his new teammate and who takes the reins of the team. And given what we know about Arenas as a player and the fact that he’s still under close scrutiny of not only the NBA hierarchy led by NBA Commissioner David Stern but also the entire front office of the Wizards’ organization. He’s now on something of a tight leash and any major transgression could see his career with the Wizards come to an abrupt end. The player has already fallen afoul with his coach this preseason having lied to him having faked an injury in a preseason game to facilitate the entry of rookie Nick Young into the game played against the Atlanta Hawks. Even with a public apology to the organization and the fans it has to be said that Arenas just doesn’t seem to have that instinct as knowing what’s right from wrong. Being armoral would appear to be the norm for the player and his mindset would appear to be if …. I screw up a less than contrite apology will suffice .

I’m under no illusion about the expectations of this team and although I can foresee them making the NBA playoffs I don’t fully expect them to challenge the likes of the Atlanta Hawks , Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls or Miami Heat for overall supremacy and dominance within the Eastern Conference. At best should they qualify from within their conference I can’t see them being any higher than a fifth or sixth seed at best . Much of the team’s fortunes this season will be dependent on how much cohesion is shown by the team and obviously upon the coaching prowess shown by Flip Saunders and his coaching staff . If they can play with any type of consistency and maintain that level throughout the season then the bye product by way of an above .500 record and the garnering of a playoff berth would be viewed as tremendous bonus by the organization.

If you thought that the bloodbath of the midterm elections were bad wherein the Tea Party essentially corralled in not only what appears to be an intransigent Republican Party that gave the Democrats an ass kicking which its leadership will long remember well into the future. It has to be said that President Barack Obama , Senator Harry Reid and House Representative and former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi have to be licking their wounds and perhaps now see the error of their ways ? You simply cannot expect to always govern from a position of strength without showing civility and at the same time be willing to listen to an opposing view no matter how idiotic you might think it to be. Well that’s now what seems to have happened as the President has come out and accepted the blame for his party’s disastrous showing in these elections. Consider however , what now seems to be going on within the organizations of the Dallas Cowboys , Minnesota Vikings and Washington Redskins ? Comedic farces simply don’t get any better than this and it would take an extremely creative writer to script something far more riveting and funnier than what we’re all now witnessing . I’d dare say that should this ever hit the big screen there’d be a plethora of Hollwood A-listers willing to take on and play the lead roles of the main characters in question ?

Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones has offered his profound apologies to the team’s fans and the fact that he hadn’t envisaged things getting so out of hand . I beg to differ as this team simply wasn’t as good as advertized ! And in coach Wade Phillips , Jones possesses a coach who seems to be way out of his depth , never mind the fact that the coach himself and his coaching staff have been about as efficient as the use of a sponge would have proven to be on the Titanic . Suffice to say that Phillips couldn’t coach or find his way out of a wet paper bag ! To suggest that Phillips ought to be viewed as a lame duck coach would be something of an understatement but the longer this charade goes on the worse it becomes for the entire organization never mind the team itself. Not one of these players on the team has a sense of pride or purpose as they systematically seem to be “mailing it in” each successive week while the team’s owner continues to look like the proverbial buffoon ! I can only assume that the Cowboys’ fans will continue to attend in droves at Cowboys Stadium to witness the diatribe now being served up by team right through to the end of the season . In retrospect the Cowboys’ season is already over but I’d like to think that the Green Bay Packers can simply add another in that coffin when the two teams meet at Lambeau Field Green Bay , Wisconsin this upcoming Sunday !

I’d like to think that the farce also on display with the Minnesota Vikings will soon come to an abrupt end . But unfortunately anything that seems to involve Brett Favre seems to be prolonged and can be as painful to endure as a bad tooth ache. Suffice to say that with the fallout over the Randy Moss affair and Brad Childress’ rather innocuous explanation that the trade for the player was a mistake gives one the impression that the club has now become a legitimate asylum for the legally insane. Could this been what team owner Zygi Wilf envisaged for his team at the start of the season ? I certainly don’t think so ! But then again this is the Vikings we’re talking about and whose every move has been placed under the microscope this season as if we were all witnessing some kind of lab experiment taking place . God this petri dish just seems to be going rancid and personally I don’t think that I can stomach much more of this crap !

Well it appears that Redskins’ owner Dan Snyder for all of business prowess simply can’t hire a coach who seemingly possesses and ounce of intellect. With the recent hiring of Mike Shanahan and an entirely new coaching staff which also includes Shanahan’s son , Kyle Shanahan . It would appear that no sooner had things seem to have calmed down within the organization a full blown maelstrom seems to be back within the team’s midst. Now at the midpoint of the team’s season Mike Shanahan seems to be questioning not only the fitness of his starting quarterback Donovan McNabb but aslo the player’s skillset as it surround McNabb’s comprehension of the “two minute drill”. Not only that but Shanahan would then proffer up the comment that McNabb’s backup Rex Grossman would be better suited to lead the team in such moment’s during a game. Given Grossman’s lack of dexterity having replaced McNabb in the waning moments of team’s game against the Detroit Lions and their subsequent loss 37-25 .I’ve got to ask myself what the hell was it that Shanahan and his son were watching ?

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Picture gallery for your perusal . By clicking on each frame you can view an individual picture in its original formatted size.

There’s the suggestion that parity within the NFL makes the game a great spectacle but given the display of the teams within the NFC I’m not so sure that’s exactly what we’re now seeing at present. If things get much worse I think that the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) ought to intervene and fine the NFL in order to protect the consumer (fans) from fraud. Because to my mind that’s what is now being perpetrated by the NFL at present !

What thoughts if any do you have concerning the fate of the Washington Wizards this season ? Also how do you see the turmoil now unfolding for the Cowboys , Redskins and Vikings ending up ? Simply chime on in with a comment . From my own perspective I’d rather see this all play out rather than there being a complete rewind of the whole charade we’ve all witnessed so far !

😦 * 🙂

Alan aka tophatal …. 🙂

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Bria Myles

Eye candy ……. Bria Myles

Bria's ass split

More of Bria is what I’d personally like to see and feel !

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

.

😦

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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The Rooney Rule ………..

The Rooney Rule

Commendable as it appears to be, I now have to wonder whether or not the intentions behind this all, is well worth it. Named after famed Pittsburgh Steelers’ owner Dan Rooney. The so called ‘Rooney Rule’s‘ intent was set to see that minorities are given the chance to interview for vacant head coach’s positions within the NFL. And considering that the very first minority to be a coach in the NFL was Frederick Douglas ‘Fritz’ Pollard in the 1920’s. One has to wonder why it was necessary to have this rule installed as mandate for all teams within the NFL. But it was apparent that with the racial tone of the league, minorities weren’t being afforded the chance of advancement from beyond the playing field and unto the sidelines as coaches, much less the chance of becoming an owner at the league’s inception.

Frederick Douglas 'Fritz'  Pollard , the  first minority  coach  of an  NFL  team.   Pollard is an  inductee  in  the  NFL  Football  Hall  of  Fame.
Frederick Douglas 'Fritz' Pollard , the first minority coach of an NFL team. Pollard is an inductee in the NFL Football Hall of Fame.


Minorities now make up 72% of the player personnel within the NFL and it appears to be generally acceptable within the league and to the fans. But how is it that the NFL while mandating for such a role, has essentially done little if anything to try and bring in a minority owner within its ranks ? By all accounts the lone occasion this attempted maneuver was made , due diligence was not taken by the league’s panel in their investigations. An an attempt was made by what we were informed was a prominent African American businessman , Reggie Fowler who was financially solvent. His attempt to purchase the Minnesota Vikings was met with a great deal of derision and skepticism. And it certainly didn’t help that this individual had the financial means but it was said could not provide the league with enough financial details for them to ensure that his ownership bid could be granted to become the league’s first and only prominent minority owner of an NFL franchise. In the end Fowler would become part of a consortium led by German businessman, Zygi Wilf, as the owner of the franchise. Wilf would become the principal partner in the ownership group of the Minnesota Vikings with a 60% stake in the organization. Fowler has a 20 % stake in the franchise, with the remaining 20 % split amongst the remaining partners of this limited partnership group. An owner in part but not a majority stake owner that would clarify the term “prominent ethnic owner” of an NFL franchise. While some facts are disputed as to Fowler’s supposed wealth , it appears from the outset that certain maneuvers were in place to deny him the success in an attempt to purchase the team, originally. As to who was behind this all , we will in fact never know. Suffice to say , that the image of the NFL was somewhat tarnished by the episode.

Ashburn, Va,. January 4th 2010. Washington Redskins General Manager Bruce Allen leaves after holding a press conference on the dismissal of Head Coach Jim Zorn at Redskins Park January 4, 2010 in Ashburn, Virginia. During the press conference Allen said, "Last place 2 years in a row is not Redskin football."  picture appeara courtesy of  Getty Images/  Win McNamee  .......

Washington Redskins’ General Manager Bruce Allen leaves after holding a press conference on the dismissal of Jim Zorn as Head Coach of the team. The press conference was held at Redskins’ Park the team’s headquarters and practice facility in Ashburn , Va, on 4th January 2010. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Win McNamee ….

It wasn’t as if this investor was Robert L. ‘Bob’ Johnson, founder of BET and the prominent African American billionaire media mogul or famed NBA legend Magic Johnson. The latter of whom has branched out to become a commercial real estate mogul and business entrepreneur, with a believed estimated net worth approaching $750million. It appears that the NFL despite its image of being a charismatic and an all welcoming league.But as of yet the one vestige in showing the fans that minorities have finally arrived in terms of a majority ownership of a franchise, has yet to materialize or be realized.

San Diego, Ca,. January 3rd 2010. Kris Dielman (#68), Dennis Norman (#64), and Nick Hardwick (#61) of the San Diego Chargers enter the field against the Washington Redskins during the Washington Redskins  v San Diego Chargers NFL Game on January 3, 2010 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. The Chargers won 23-20. picture appears  courtesy of Getty Images/ Doug Miraelle  .......
San Diego, Ca,. January 3rd 2010. Kris Dielman (#68), Dennis Norman (#64), and Nick Hardwick (#61) of the San Diego Chargers enter the field against the Washington Redskins during the Washington Redskins v San Diego Chargers NFL Game on January 3, 2010 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. The Chargers won 23-20. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Doug Miraelle .......

Courtesy of Associated Press and Yahoo Sports

Redskins talking to coaches to replace fired Zorn

By Joseph White , AP Sports Writer

Ashburn, Va. (AP)—Jim Zorn was fired by the Washington Redskins early Monday, the first step in yet another team overhaul under owner Dan Snyder.

Zorn was informed of his dismissal shortly after the team returned to Redskins Park following Sunday’s season-ending 23-20 loss at San Diego.

“I just know that last place is not Redskins football,” general manager Bruce Allen said. “Last place two years in a row is not Redskins football.”

Zorn went 12-20 over two seasons, but he lost 18 of his past 24 games after a 6-2 start in 2008. The Redskins struggled early despite a weak schedule this season and finished 4-12, their worst record since 1994.

“No one in the organization is satisfied with our record over the last two years,” Snyder said in a statement released by the team, “and I am sure that Jim would concur with that statement. It has been painful for him, too. I certainly accept responsibility for mistakes that I have made. I am hopeful that our fans will accept my commitment and pledge to deliver a franchise that can compete in the NFC East every season.”

Zorn’s replacement will be Washington’s seventh coach since Snyder bought the team in 1999. Playing a role in the decision will be Allen, who was hired as the GM last month. Allen would not comment on former Denver Broncos coach Mike Shanahan, who is considered the favorite to get the job.

“We’re in the process of talking to people,” Allen said. “We have a good game plan of what we’re going to do.”

Neither Snyder nor Zorn were made available for comment.

Zorn’s dismissal had been expected for months. The front office stripped him of his play-calling duties in late October, and Snyder has interviewed assistant coach Jerry Gray for the job weeks ago, according to the Fritz Pollard Alliance, which monitors minority hiring in the NFL.

The new coach, Snyder and Allen will have a monumental task to rebuild a team with many roster deficiencies and major questions at offensive line, quarterback and running back.

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Washington Redskins head coach Jim Zorn looks on from the sideline against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on January 3, 2010 in San Diego, California. The Chargers defeated the Redskins 23-20.  picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Jeff Gross ............
Washington Redskins head coach Jim Zorn looks on from the sideline against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on January 3, 2010 in San Diego, California. The Chargers defeated the Redskins 23-20. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Jeff Gross ............

The NBA and MLB seems to have done quite nicely for themselves, with minorities coveting and obtaining a ‘seat up at the big house’ at the dining table. Where the owners can feast upon the billions of dollars that annually finds its way into the NFL coffers. This might on the face of it appear to be racially insensitive and motivated. But I assure you, nothing could be further from the truth as I feel it only proper at this juncture to let you know that for in spite of its facade. The hierarchy of the NFL may well be the best organized , financially sound and ran of the four major sports in North America. And that at the end of the day is in essence what the NFL is all about. Any bye product from it all in terms of entertainment and plaudits from the fans, media and populace in general, is merely further proof of the game’s popularity.

Washington Redskins head coach Jim Zorn, left,  greeting team owner Dan Snyder before an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, in Landover, Md. Zorn was fired by the Washington Redskins early Monday, Jan. 4, 2009, the first step in yet another team overhaul / Nick Wass .....
Washington Redskins head coach Jim Zorn, left, greeting team owner Dan Snyder before an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, in Landover, Md. Zorn was fired by the Washington Redskins early Monday, Jan. 4, 2009, the first step in yet another team overhaul / Nick Wass .....

And while we’ve seen the success of Tony Dungy as the coach of the Indianapolis Colts, being the first African American NFL coach to win the Superbowl. And the ongoing success of his of successor, Jim Caldwell augurs well for the current situation. But other than Caldwell and Raheem Morris of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, there are no other African American coaches in the NFL. Furthermore, that situation is even hindered by the fact that assistant head coaches and coordinators aren’t always afforded the luxury of the required cursory interview as demanded by the league’s mandated policy. A team has to only say that they have a minority as a prospective candidate and essentially create the scenario that the process is being adhered to. An initial cursory interview may well be granted.

The Washington Redskins with a new general manager in place, with Bruce Allen now assuming the position formerly held by Vinny Cerrato. The Daniel Snyder owned team might just be the worst ran NFL franchise in the league at present. Their turnovers in coaches is line with consistency of the Oakland Raiders and their ‘revolving door policy’ when it comes to coaches. Success or lack of it thereof, seems to be the norm for both of these franchises. Jim Zorn is the current coach of the Redskins and the impending upheaval appears apparent that Zorn’s two year tenure as the coach seems about to come to an abrupt end.

Reggie Fowler, left, has agreed to buy the Minnesota Vikings from current owner Red McCombs, right. The deal, worth a reported $625 million,
Reggie Fowler, left, has agreed to buy the Minnesota Vikings from current owner Red McCombs, right. The deal, worth a reported $625 million. However, the deal fell through when the NFL panel entrusted to review the bid stated that Fowler's financial backing and finances wasn't all in place and met with their tacit test. The deal was torpedoed and Fowler would then become part of the consortium headed by Zygi Wilf that would be successful in their purchase of the team from then owner Red McCombs . picture appears courtesy of afp/reuters/ Paul Marshall .............. ,

Courtesy of NFL.com Wire reports

Zorn out after two seasons as Redskins’ coach; is Shanahan in ?

The Washington Redskins fired coach Jim Zorn early Monday, the first step in yet another team overhaul that appears likely to involve Mike Shanahan.

An unidentified official within the NFL informed The Associated Press that new Redskins general manager Bruce Allen talked to Shanahan by phone Monday, and league sources told NFL Network’s Jason La Canfora to expect an organizational overhaul by Thursday but maybe sooner. Shanahan, who won two Super Bowls in 14 seasons as the Denver Broncos’ coach, would take over as coach/team president and quickly bring in assistant coaches and front-office personnel.

Zorn was dismissed shortly after the team returned to Redskins Park following Sunday’s season-ending 23-20 loss at San Diego.

Zorn went 12-20 over two seasons, but he lost 18 of his last 24 games after a 6-2 start in 2008. The Redskins struggled early despite a weak schedule this season and finished 4-12, their worst record since 1994.

It was the second consecutive season that the Redskins finished in last place in the NFC East under Zorn.

Allen said in a news conference Monday that “last place is not Redskin football.” He also refused to speculate on who the next coach would be, but he repeatedly said that a “passion for football” would be a primary requirement. He added that “head coach in the NFL is the most demanding executive position in sports.”

Zorn’s replacement will be Washington’s seventh coach since Dan Snyder bought the team in 1999.

“This has been an extremely difficult season for our organization and for the fans,” Snyder said in a statement released by the team. “Bruce Allen spent many hours examining the football operations, and we are both determined to do whatever it takes to build a championship team. That process begins today

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They’ve eagerly pursued Mike Shanahan for the position. And after two initial interviews, it appears that Shanahan is the successor in waiting for the presumed vacancy. What might the most egregious maneuver in all of this has been the apparent move by the Redskins to interview one of their low tiered assistant coaches,Jerry Gray, assistant defensive coordinator, who happens to be an African American. Now if this is being done merely to adhere to the Rooney policy, instead of it being a valid interview for a viable candidate for the position. But it appears that this is nothing more than a ploy on the part of the Redskins. It remains to be seen whether or not the NFL hierarchy under Roger Goodell as the league’s commissioner will have anything at all to say about the situation. It will be very interesting to see whether or not they will watch with a great deal of close scrutiny as to whether or not the Washington Redskins will follow the league mandated policy. On the face of it, it looks as if the Redskins are following the policy. But if anything they are actually circumventing the policy by merely creating the appearance that the interviewee is a candidate for the position. And that if anything smacks of the insidious behavior expected of a franchise wherein the norm of segregation was said to be still in being from a coaching standpoint, albeit that the roster of the franchise is very much a diverse one in nature.

Jerry Gray, secondary's and  assistant  defensive  coordinat  of   the   Washington  Redskins
Jerry Gray, secondary's and assistant defensive coordinat of the Washington Redskins. Gray has been the lone minority candiate interviewed for the now vacant head coach's position. Former Broncos' head coach has twice been interviewed for the position , prior to the dismissal of Jim Zorn as head coach of the team. picture appears courtesy of TWP/ John McDonnell .....

Segregation in sports at the player personnel level is a thing of the past within the NFL. But from a coaching standpoint it looks likes it’s either at a standstill or about to indeed take a turn for the worse. But this situation just isn’t happening at the NFL level but also at the collegiate level. Of the 120 collegiate football positions at the Division 1 A level, there are less than a dozen coaches that are of African American origin or of any other minority for that matter. But at the collegiate level where the NCAA governs college athletics. There’s nothing that mandates the hiring policy when it comes to the hiring of a football coach. It’s not really so much of a dilemma that can’t be resolved. But for the NCAA it’s not something that is of an urgent priority for the organization or the various conferences. They’re not openly willing to discuss the situation and it appears neither are the NCAA. The Black Coaches Administrators (BCA) are the only ones who are pressing the colleges, the NCAA and NFL , on the issue of their hiring practices, as it concerns minorities at the college coaching level and amongst the professional ranks. And what success if any is almost mute on the part of the NCAA and how they view the situation.

Denver , October '06. Head coach Mike Shanahan of the Denver Broncos looks to call a play against the Baltimore Ravens during a cold rainy first quarter on October 9, 2006 at Invesco Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado.  picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Brian Bahr  .......
Denver , October '06. Head coach Mike Shanahan of the Denver Broncos looks to call a play against the Baltimore Ravens during a cold rainy first quarter on October 9, 2006 at Invesco Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado. picture appears courtesy of Getty Images/ Brian Bahr .......

The aspirants for these positions more often than not, are qualified for those positions but even if they are not. How are they are going to know what qualities will be needed by them in order to make them better suited candidates ? Especially in the case where they’re being denied the opportunity to even interview for a vacant position. At the collegiate level there is no ‘Rooney Rule’ in place for the candidates seeking a vacant coach’s position. But this is something where questions are needed to be asked and answered concerning this very issue. As to whether or not we’ll never know what will be forthcoming in the terms of an answer remains to be seen. But somehow these question have to be posed and answered unequivocally. If only to allude to the fact that there is clear transparency when it comes to the hiring of minority coaches at the collegiate as well as at the NFL level of football.

The Rooney Rule was put in place for a reason but it appears that now the NFL may well be calling time on this particular mandate.. As to the NCAA, well they’ll just continue to march to the beat of their very own drum completely oblivious of the realities of the real world and how it exists ! With its immense power in terms of its governing of the collegiate athletics’ landscape, it goes unchallenged by the major conferences as well as the Federal Government. And the Federal Government at times, would rather chide the NCCA , rather than demand that the NCAA do what is right and morally acceptable.

There But For The Grace Of God ……..

Death when it comes to someone so young, is often seen as a tragedy , dependent upon how that life is lost. And the loss of a life is never an easy one to take . Not for the family of the victim or for their friends and acquaintances.