Archive for the ‘NFL’ Category


The Cowboy’s Season is Underway

The weather is cool and there is a nice crispness in the air. For many of us, that means football season is here. With the NFL’s 2013/2014 season underway, we are just now starting to get a good look at the teams and how they are doing, and while it might be too early to make any predictions yet, you can bet that super fans around the country are doing just that! Who is your favorite team? Do you adore the Dallas Cowboys? No matter how your team might be doing this year, true fans remain loyal.

How do you watch your games though? Are you at home and on the edge of your seat, hollering at the refs and covering your eyes when the tension mounts? Do you get together with friends at a sports bar and watch? While those might be some decent ways to watch the game, they aren’t the only ways by any means.

The season is young and the Cowboys are currently 3-3, so things could start getting better for them. Why not get out and watch football the right way? No matter what team you love, you know the best way to see them is to watch the game in person. Tailgating before the game and then heading inside to gather with 60,000 other fanatics is unlike watching at home on your couch. You can feel the excitement in the air and the energy the crowd projects.

It’s time that you got some tickets for you and the other fans in your life. Just imagine how much fun it would be to get down to Cowboys Stadium in Arlington and cheer on your team with America’s Team! You can scream at the refs live and in person, which is far more entertaining than arguing with your television. Get your tickets today for one game or for the rest of the season. Don’t forget, football tickets can make great gift items as well. No matter where you live and no matter what your favorite team might be, it’s time to get out there and support them the right way — by screaming and waving your foam finger!

Time for Tickets to the Patriots

The New England Patriots are an NFL team with a long history, most of which is shining with just a few tarnished spots. Ardent fans of the team will follow the team through winning and losing seasons, and will attend every game or at least watch it on television. The team’s detractors are often just as vocal about the way they dislike the team, so it is important for fans to get out to the stadium — and even to travel to other stadiums — to show support. This year promises to be especially interesting for fans of the team. Most have heard the recent news that the Pats just signed Tim Tebow, a quarterback with a strange history.

The Heisman winner has only been in the League for a few years, since 2010, and he’s been on three teams in that time — the Denver Broncos, the New York Jets, and now the Patriots. His NFL career started promising with the Broncos, having led them to a number of fourth quarter victories. However, his light started to fade, thus the trades.

Now, he is acting as Tom Brady’s backup. This could be a good plan on the part of the Pats, as Tebow does seem to show at least some promise. Under the tutelage of Brady — love him or hate him — Tebow could well improve. Of course, all this remains to be seen, and chances are Tebow will not be getting much playing time.

Of course, the Patriots are about much more than Tim Tebow. They are a storied franchise that always seems to be in contention for the title. The passing game is always interesting to watch whether you are rooting for the Patriots or against them. Regardless of which side of the line you are on, there is no doubting that Tom Brady can throw and the rest of the Pats know what they are doing on the field.

If you love the Patriots and you want to show your support for your favorite team, it’s time to check out some tickets right now. Make it to at least one or two home games this year.

Should RG3 have been Benched in Redskins’ Loss to Seattle?

rg3-redskinsDuring the Washington Redskins’ first playoff game of the season, they lost to the Seattle Seahawks by a score of 24-14. And it was ugly. RG3, who was the best hope Washington had to further themselves in the postseason, got injured twice — both injuries to his right knee, an area that he’s already been benched for this season. The first time he injured the knee was in the first half, and he went back out to play. Now, those who love controversy, are saying that he should never have gone back in.

It’s an easy argument, to say that Griffin should have been benched and Cousins should stepped in much sooner than he did. Even when you consider that Cousins had missed practice that week due to illness, and the fact that the Seahawks’ defense has been one of the toughest to beat this year. After all, this is Griffin’s health we’re talking about and possibly, his career that he has only just begun. So yes, perhaps he should have been sat after he first injured his knee in the first half.

But, the other side of the story always must be considered. First, there was a conversation that took place on the sidelines once Griffin was hurt the first time. Coach Mike Shanahan asked him if he was good to play, and Griffin answered, “I’m hurt, not injured.” Really, what player isn’t at least somewhat hurt after just coming off the field? And while this is the hottest line being tossed around in the debate of whether Griffin should have been benched, the actual conversation was likely much longer than that. These talks are very typical between the coach and the player, as the decision is largely theirs to make.

So maybe Shanahan really doesn’t trust Griffin at his word. And maybe he knew he was putting the kid’s career in jeopardy when he sent him back out there. But that’s not likely the case. After all, Griffin didn’t really seem all that hurt on the field. There was some maneuvering, and sometimes yes, he limped. Again, these are things that nearly every football player does while they’re playing football. Especially when it’s a playoff game. And even if Griffin was showing signs of weakness, he also showed signs of strength, tossing a touchdown after he went back out.

The culture of football is typically cutthroat, as we’ve seen with teams just this past year. But would a coach really knowingly risk his own player’s health? In the first game of the playoffs, and with many good years still left in him? Would the player knowingly severely injure himself, in the hopes that he can at least make a couple good plays in the meantime? None of it is likely. What’s more probable is that both Shanahan and Griffin took a risk, as players and coaches do every day in the NFL. Unfortunately this time, it didn’t work out for either of them.

Punishments Dealt to Saints Staff for Bounty Programs

saints-bounty-programEveryone knew that when NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell dealt down his punishments for the Saints’ bounty programs, they would be harsh. So far, it has resulted in a suspension for head coach, Sean Payton, for the entire 2012-2013 season; a suspension for general manager, Mickey Loomis; an indefinite suspension for defensive coordinator, Gregg Williams; two second-round draft picks; and a fine of $500,000. But Goodell isn’t done. He wants even more people to pay, and it’s left the hands of the Saints tied tighter than ever.

The Commissioner also wants to find and fine the approximately 24 defensive players that were involved in accepting the bounties for “particularly unusual and egregious” and “totally unacceptable” hits on players of opposing teams. One of those players who will not be called into question is quarterback, Drew Brees. And now it seems, the New Orleans Saints might have to give him whatever he’s asking for.

Brees’ contract is up, and he can’t sign with another team due to the franchise tag the Saints have on him. In exchange for that tag, Brees gets a guaranteed $15-$16 million per year. Brees wants to earn $23 million, but the Saints came back with $18 million. That puts them at a standstill, with the scales tipping in the direction of the Saints‘ favor. But that was before the Commissioner showed that he wasn’t joking around with his bounty discipline. Now, the Saints are in a bit of a tougher spot.

Brees is exactly what this team needs right now to pull them together as a unit, and bring some sanity to an insane locker room. He’s inarguably an elite player and is the best chance the Saints have at pulling anything together for the coming season. He can’t leave, but he can decide that he’s just not going to play.

That’s something that the Saints just can’t afford right now; and is probably what will not only balance out the scales of Brees’ coming paycheck, but tip them right over into his bank account.

Where will Peyton Manning Go?

peyton-manningAfter Peyton Manning missed all of the 2011 football season with a neck surgery, and as a result, the Colts had one of their worst years in recent history, the team has now decided to release the quarterback in favor of paying him a huge $28 million bonus. Manning stated in a very emotional press conference yesterday, “I haven’t given much thought to where I’m going to go; but I have given a lot of thought as to where I’ve been.” If that’s the case, he’s the only one. A few teams are already eager to get one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time in their jersey; but will they hesitate due to the star’s past health history?

The Cardinals and Seahawks are two teams that have been rumored to mutter interest in Manning behind closed doors. But the Cardinals have already committed to Kevin Kolb and still owe him a heap of money; and the Seahawks currently have Tarvaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst on their roster. The team to express the most interest so far is reportedly the Miami Dolphins, and the fact that Peyton already has a home there might make it a good fit.

But will anyone actually end up taking him?

Before this year it was hard to imagine a football season without Peyton Manning. But with continuing health problems posing an uncertain future, who can afford to pay big bucks for a quarterback that might never amount to much more than health progress reports and sideline-sitting?

What do you think? Do you think Manning’s uncertain health will keep him out of football; or do you think the right team is going to come and scoop up this superstar?

Mid-December Brings Shocking Upsets

green-bay-packersWe shouldn’t be too surprised to know that the Green Bay Packers‘ perfect season came to an end, but at the hands of the Kansas City Chiefs?  Yes, the under-performing team is now at 13-1 after suffering defeat against Kansas City.  What went wrong?  Green Bay fans are not exactly crushed, as an undefeated streak was not really a priority.  In fact, most NFL viewers were talking about the performance of the Chiefs, rather than the “shame” of Green Bay.

It’s not at all surprising that a quality team would overcome Green Bay at least once–especially considering that the Packers have been drastically affected by player injuries.  On the injured list are receiver Greg Jennings, running back James Starks, tackle Bryan Bulaga and rookie offensive linesman Derek Sherrod.

However, one must give credit to the Chiefs, and in particular, to interim coach Romeo Crennel, who went from defensive coordinator to coaching after the unceremonious firing of Todd Haley, who started the season poorly with a 5-8 record, and a crushing 37-10 loss to the New York Jets. 

Some sources speculate that Crennel did have an effective strategy, which was to overwhelm the offensive line of the Packers.  The Giants stumbled upon this “secret” flaw in Green Bay’s armor a few weeks ago, and gave them a very close game, though in the end they couldn’t capitalize on this weakness.  Practically everyone in the NFL is still buzzing about the performance of Aaron Rodgers who continues to make great decisions and great throws. 

One thing’s for sure: the eyes of the league are now on coach Romeo Crennel, who starts his temporary gig with a great accomplishment: a defeat of the sport’s best team.  This loss will no doubt fire up Green Bay, and agitate quarterback Aaron Rodgers to a more cautious state of mind.  Just witness how Rodgers looked after being sacked multiple times by outside linebacker Tamba Hali!

Speaking of upsets, how about the first win of the Indianapolis Colts?  The Colts are the perfect mirror image of the Packers, with a 1-13 score, after (finally) defeating an adversary and a good one at that, in the Tennessee Titans.  The Colts also avoided an embarrassing 0-14 record, which would have been a disastrous first. 

Things are looking shaky in the NFL in Mid-December and perhaps it’s the unstable weather.  Perhaps as January comes in, and colder temperatures prevail, we’ll see a return to the status quo?

These Three NFL Teams Need Your Cheers!

nfl-teamsThe NFL season is underway and three teams are falling from grace. In fact, they’re in danger of blowing the whole season! Of course, there’s nothing too shameful about a 5-3, especially when compared to appalling records earned by the likes of the Dolphins, the Rams and (sob) the Colts.

However, coming from the New England Patriots, we expect a little more than 5-3 (as of November 7th, 2011) since this was, at one time, the “dynasty” of the NFL. The Patriots have slipped to number nine in the rankings after losing two games straight, most recently to the New York Giants. What’s the problem? The Patriots are suffering from defensive problems, and are attempting to coast through the season with powerful offense. While this strategy worked at least three times, it’s getting to the point where other teams are starting to study New England in advance and exploit their defensive problems.

What about the Washington Redskins? At one time, one of the most valuable franchises, and at one time a contender, now the Redskins have fallen four weeks in a row, taking them to a 3-5 record. This is all the more discouraging since they started out strongly at 3-1. However, offense problems are significant, including the flawed performance of quarterback John Beck.

The Buffalo Bills are also suffering, maintaining a 5-3 loss, but losing a significant game to the Jets. Besides turning the ball over three times, there were also offense problems. In fact, they didn’t even start scoring major points until the third quarter of their game with the New York Jets.

Meanwhile, this season is becoming increasingly “Bizarro World” in terms of top playing teams. After all, the Bengals are now the #1 ranked team in the AFC North, followed closely by the Ravens, both maintaining a 6-2 record. The Houston Texans are holding their own at 6-3 of the AFC South, while the New York Giants are controlling the NFC East.

The only lack of surprise this season is the tank-like performance of the Green Bay Packers who are maintaining an 8-0 win-loss record. However, your dreams of seeing a Packers vs. Patriots, or a Packers vs. Bills are slowly deteriorating. Now is the time to root on your former champions and get them back in the competitive season!

Mid-October 2011 Reveals Some Monsters, Ghosts and Scary Sights in the NFL

nflIt’s not quite Halloween yet, but if you’re keeping track of the latest NFL scores, then you’re seeing some scary sights, a few “ghosts” who are fading from glory, and a few monstrous defeats–and not from the teams you expect. Let’s first talk about the most gruesome scores of October 16, 2011.

How about the Green Bay Packers slaughtering the Rams? Talk about a sacrificial ram–the Packers defeated the Rams 24-3, despite some serious offense problems from the former. The Rams have since acquired Brandon Lloyd from Denver, who will hopefully be an effective pass receiver for Sam Bradford. Many journalists are stating that the Rams need a miracle if they’re going to survive this season with their dignity intact.

How about the ghastly final score of 39-10, as the Chicago Bears wasted the Vikings? Perhaps Chicago had something to prove after last week’s disastrous game with the Detroit Lions, because they displayed some solid, if unorthodox, plays. Meanwhile, last year’s “big story” is now becoming ghostly, considering that they compiled a win/loss record of 1-5 as of mid-October.

Meanwhile, the New England Patriots strive to prove to their naysayers that they are not a ghost of a team. Many believe the franchise is over, New England is playing like a champion, thanks to great performances by players Tom Brady and Aaron Hernandez, both of whom helped the team to score a last minute touchdown for the win. And the Dallas Cowboys are starting to become translucent in terms of wins. Each and every week they test their competition, only to lose by a hair. Still, final score is what determines the season, not just strong resistance. In fact, Dallas’ future is looking bleak, just in time for Halloween, since they now have two offensive starters on the injury list: Felix Jones and Bill Nagy.

So which team has the best win and loss record this early in the season? The Patriots have only lost once, giving them an impressive 5-1 record, though the Ravens are holding their own with 4-1 for the season thus far. Both the Lions and the 49ers are also looking good, each one having only lost one game, but with five victories behind them. However, the team with the best score card this week is the Green Bay Packers who are 6-0. And while there are plenty of teams vying for the worst record of the league, it’s hard to non-compete with the Rams, who have lost five games without a single victory!

What do you think, is Green Bay destined to win Super Bowl 2012 or is it too soon to tell?

Retired NFL Players to Sue NFLPA

nfl-players-sue

There are more lawsuits floating around in the world of sports. But this time it’s not unions suing owners, or players’ associations suing league execs. This time, it’s retired NFL players who feel as though they’ve been getting the short end of the stick — and all because they’re no longer playing.

The lawsuit has been filed by 28 retired NFL players including Carl Eller, Chuck Bednarick, and John Hannah, although it represents all retired NFL players. The lawsuit is against the NFL Players’ Association; DeMaurice Smith, the union’s president; Tom Brady, New England’s quarterback; and Mike Vrabel, a former player in the league. The suit deals with the collective bargaining agreement that was agreed on to stop the lockout and get the season started for this year. The retired players say that their rights were given up during negotiations, in order so that the current players in the league could receive more benefits and bigger pay.

Just two of the benefits the retirees were forced to sacrifice affected their pension incomes as well as their health care in their retirement years. More importantly than that, the retired football players are also saying that because the union was decertified in March 2011 before the lockout began, there was no union to represent them and so, their rights were violated.

Lawyer Mark Hausfeld is representing the plaintiffs in the case. He was also the lawyer that represented the retired players while the labor dispute was being settled. And while he’s been talking plenty about the case, players on the defendant’s side, as well as the executive director of external affairs for the NFLPA, could not be reached for comment.

No New Games Added to Upcoming NFL Schedule

nfl-gamesThe NFL wanted to include 18 more games in their upcoming schedule as part of the collective bargaining agreement, but many of the players, coaches, and general managers see that as a major problem. And as such, no new games will be added.

So what’s wrong with giving fans even more games to cheer on, and giving the owners more revenue from those games? It’s just not possible, especially in states where the climate gets very cold come mid-January, and players and fans are outside for hours at a time. In states such as New York, Pittsburgh, Chicago, and Buffalo, by the time January rolls around, there’s already plenty of snow on the field and temperatures are just far too low for anyone to be out there for any length of time.

So, one of the two or three proposed weeks would need to come at the beginning of the season, which would make that one week fall in line with Labor Day weekend. The problem with that is that the NFL mandated in 2001 that no football is to start that weekend, as too many fans use that weekend as vacation time before heading back to school and work.

The other problem, says some teams, are the short careers of football players. With the average player playing only three or four years before they must exit the league due to injury, adding 18 games is a major risk. During that time, good players who are already getting injured during the regular season could become even more severely injured, shortening their time in the league to just two years, or perhaps even just one! That risk, is just one that doesn’t need to be taken.

As it stands, the NFL is currently hoping to still extend the football season to President’s Day weekend. But that’s not going to happen this year and, as some executives have made it clear, they’re hoping to stop that from ever happening.

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