Posts Tagged ‘NFL’

What’s Going to Happen with the Dallas Cowboys in the 2011-2012 NFL Season?

The Dallas Cowboys are one of the most popular NFL teams in history and yet they are a team whose past glories seem to be far behind them. In the past, Texas fans could always look forward to a promising new season, given the Cowboys huge vat of resources thanks to the rich team owner Jerry Jones.

However, the latest news and indications of the lockout-affected season indicate major changes to come. The rumor is that a resolution of the NFL lockout (which is looking likely at this point, which is a good thing) is going to bring a salary cap of $120 million per team. If this is true, the Cowboys are already $18 million dollars over the limit. That means some major cuts, and some new limitations when it comes to signing free agents.

One of the biggest names amongst Cowboy free agents is Doug Free. Sources are suggesting that Free could command a large salary once the new season begins, and yet it may be more than the Cowboys can now afford–by law. How will the new cap affect players like DeMarcus Ware, who is currently making $6.7 million in base salary or Tony Romo who is making $9 million? Roy Williams is another much talked about name, as he didn’t have a great season in 2010-2011 and yet has a protruding $10 million salary that merits attention.

The Dallas Cowboys had a horrid season overall in 2010-2011, starting the season with 1-7 and ending the season at a disappointing 6-10. Immediately after the dreadful 1-7 record went into the books, the team announced that coach Wade Phillips was dropped and replaced by interim coach Jason Garrett. Cowboy fans had to watch as Super Bowl XLV took place in Arlington in the Cowboys Stadium, which no Cowboy anywhere in sight. It’s certainly reached a critical point, and this year money is an issue.

There is also talk of the Cowboys training camp being delayed for another couple of weeks, as there are still various legal issues that must be resolved. So thus far, we have a weak team recovering from a poor season, with financial limitations, with many big “ifs” and a late start. How do you think the NFL’s most expensive team will perform this year? Are you hoping for a miracle or is there still some legitimate hope left in Dallas?

Who Are the NFL Favorites in 2012?

It’s never too early to start talking about NFL favorites for Super Bowl XLVI in 2012. We are hoping to get a great NFL season – even if that season is abridged. The plans are already underway to host the Super Bowl Indianapolis, Indiana, in the Lucas Oil Stadium, so you have to believe that the Indianapolis Colts are eyeing a team victory in their home arena. In fact, it’s the first time that an NFL Super Bowl is being held in the city of Indianapolis. So you can bet that football fans are excited regardless of whose name is on the ticket.

If the NFL owners come to an agreement with the players, the big game will take place on February 5, 2012. So provided these boys come to their senses and start thinking about the fans (come on guys…we want the 2012 Super Bowl and of course our kegs of beer) we are sure to see a fiercely competitive season. Websites like and have posted their odds for each and every NFL team, based on roster data and team performances in recent years.

According to the odds, the Panthers, the Bills, the Cardinals and the Broncos are all bottoming out. The sky also looks dim for the Bengals, Browns, Redskins, Rams and Jaguars. That leaves underdogs like the Tennessee Titans (who are still looking for a player to put them over the edge), the Oakland Raiders (one quarterback short of a great team) and the Seattle Seahawks who have a history of almost achieving greatness.

Some pundits are saying that it’s all about the quarterback this season, since several teams are having quarterback issues. Favorites for the season include the home team Colts, who did dominate the AFC South and has a power player in Peyton Manning, as well as the San Diego Chargers who have Marcus McNeill and Vincent Jackson, and the Dallas Cowboys, who have Jason Garrett, and who are undoubtedly hungry for Super Bowl spotlight again. Intense competition may exclude the Bears, the Giants and the Ravens, but then again, a short season tends to be unpredictable.

As far as favorites go, it’s hard to ignore past performances and New Orleans, Green Bay (last year’s winner), Pittsburgh Steelers, and the New England Patriots (who are the odds on favorite) are the teams to beat this year. The only other dark horse team is the Philadelphia Eagles, who are promising an aggressive strategy in signing free agents. If Super Bowls are determined by the players, then we may know the winner as early as training camp dates. What do you think? Is there an odds-on favorite in your mind?

Get your NFL tickets now for the 2012 season!

Looming Lockout Continues For 2011-2012 NFL Season

The looming threat of the NFL continues for 2011-2012. It’s the NFL Lockout, the sports equivalent of the Actors Strike and Writers Strike. However, the pivotal issue being fumbled is that of a new proposed bargaining agreement that suggests the owners want more revenue than they are getting.

In previous seasons, owners took roughly one billion dollars from revenue of about nine billion dollars. However, team owners state that due to the recession (or in their words “the economic realities of the era”) they want over a 100% raise, citing $2.4 billion dollars as their aim.

How’s that for a reversal of fortune? This time it’s the big wigs and executives who want a pay hike rather than the “talent.” What does this mean for our LaDainian Tomlinson’s and Tom Brady’s? This means that players would have to take a revenue cut of 18%. Gee, does this seem likely to you?

This is not to suggest that the locker room is unanimously against the proposal. Some players do understand where these costs are coming from, as many team owners are investing big money in remodeled stadiums and other important promotional expenses. Some sources are suggesting that the players want to retain a 50/50 split of revenue, which the owners are adamantly countering with an offer of 51-49.

If the worst-case scenario happens and there is no NFL 2011-2012, this will not only hurt the league and the sport but hosting cities and essentially the entire United States. The NFL Lockout website states that an estimated $160 million would be lost in each NFL city; in addition to 115,000 jobs. The worst-case scenario looks scary indeed.

However, as of June 6, 2011, sources (like Daniel Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal) are optimistic, but slightly muted in enthusiasm. The NFL is planning for a season this year, though it could be as little as eight games, possibly started by the last quarter of 2011. While this isn’t as exciting as a full season on schedule, it does offer some hope that there will not be a total “lockout” due to poor negotiations between the NFL and the players association (NFLPA).

Talk of a lockdown has been happening since last year’s Super Bowl. These boys have until October to make a deal. You can bet NFL tickets will go fast with such a potentially short season. Stay tuned for more information on the lockout on the blog.

NFL Playoff Picture To Change?

Breaking news from…

FORT WORTH, Texas — Rich McKay, Atlanta Falcons president and co-chair of the NFL Competition Committee, said Wednesday at the league’s owners meeting that he would like to see playoff teams re-seeded, with division winners not necessarily granted a home game.

McKay said that in the past, similar proposals have received upwards of 18 votes, but not the 24 needed by owners to pass a measure.

When asked if he believed the possibility of a .500 or worse team winning a division would lead to future consideration of altering playoff seeding, McKay said: “I hope so. I’ve brought it up twice and never had real success getting it passed. I think it is something we should consider.”

McKay said he has always supported re-seeding spots 4 through 6 based on record, but he realizes not all share his views. Several owners I’ve spoken to in the past about this issue believe there should be a significant reward for winning one’s division, with that belief grounded in the traditions of the game and a desire to keep a focus on divisional rivalries.

“I don’t disagree with that,” McKay said, “but re-seeding is something we should keep talking about.”

What do you think?  Should things stay the way they are, granting the division winners home-field throughout, or should the NFL continue to deviate from football tradition, and shake things up?

Metrodome Collapse

With the Vikings and Giants game being moved to Detroit, we’re wondering how the play of each team will be impacted.  The video of the collapse is something to see…

More NFL Rule Changes…

With the hard hits that took place in week 6, including two by Pittsburgh Steelers‘ linebacker James Harrison, one by New England Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather and one by Atlanta Falcons cornerback Dunta Robinson. All three players were fined, with Harrison receiving a $75k fine and the other two being hit with a $50k fine each. The hits prompted the NFL to meet immediately, and create rules to prevent players leading with the head, helmet to helmet contact, and other hits deemed “flagrant” or intended to cause injury to another player.

The news has fans, and some players, in an uproar. Football has always been a dangerous – and violent – contact sport. While most agree that “dirty play” should be handled on a case-by-case basis, taking the hits and hard play out of the game will only result in the decline of its popularity.

So we want to know what YOU think. Would a “Steel Curtain” defense be the same, if the players aren’t allowed to hit in the same way they have for more than 75 years? Would the game be the same if a linebacker can’t go at a running back, for fear he will be suspended?

Speak your mind, football fans!

Are The Pittsburgh Steelers For Real?

With week 3 in the books, there are some movers and shakers in the collective power ranking pool. The Chicago Bears and Pittsburgh Steelers have soared to the top, while pre-season analysis said the Bears were laden with trouble, and the Steelers would be lucky to go 2-2 without Big Ben for the first four games.  The New York Jets had – hands down – the best defense in the NFL.

What we find most interesting, though, is the way the Pittsburgh Steelers have rallied around adversity, touted as a team that is too old, and riddled with problems.  Not even making the post-season last year, the Steelers were – and are – determined to prove everyone wrong.  So far undefeated without their two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback, the Steelers defense has done an amazing job.  And the offense has allowed Charlie Batch to make plays. Entering week 4 of the 2010 NFL season, the Steelers have defeated the Atlanta Falcons, Tennessee Titans and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Not too long ago, Sports Illustrated columnist, Peter King, chose the Steelers to beat the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XLV. People joked.  They laughed.  They wanted to know what King was smoking when he made that prediction…  But the actions on the field do speak for themselves, don’t they?

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Impacts On Week 2

So early in the season, but so much happening. When you have your studs — and duds — picked, the NFL throws you for a loop. Maybe that is why we love it so much. In week two, we saw…

The Super Bowl defending New Orleans Saints lose Reggie Bush to a broken leg. Ouch. Many forecast that one Bush does not make a team. Others say that his loss wll be the team’s detriment. In fantasy world, people are dropping Bush faster than you can say spit. The StubPass folks are divided on whether or not the Saints can pull off a playoff run, without Bush in the mix for the time being…

In a “Leggo my Eggo” moment, Philadelphia Eagles‘ Michael Vick is the starter. There are none more waffly than Andy Reid, who can’t decide from one week to the next , who the starting QB spot belongs to. Initially, he was steadfast that the start belonged to Kevin Kolb. But wait. No. Now it’s Michael Vick. Granted, Vick did quite well for the Eagles. But the team needs to know who the leader is, more than the media does. Lordy.

Charlie Batch, of the Pittsburgh Steelers, was all but released just a few short weeks ago. In the absence of the 102 million dollar QB Ben Roethlisberger, the decision was made. Byron Leftwich was the starter, with Dennis Dixon as 2 string.

And then, Boom Boom Pow. The Steelers’ Leftwich is out with a knee injury and Dixon is the #1 — yet struggling — starter. But no, there’s more. Dixon finds himself in a jam with a knee injury requiring surgery, and now a Steelers (essentially) 4th string veteran QB, Charlie Batch, is at the helm in week three. Backup? Antwan Randle El (who could, potentially, do quite well if need be). The Steelers defense needs to maintain…

You have got to love the NFL. Predictions mean nothing, when one has no idea what will happen from week to week.

So who is going to be in the “impact player”? What team will suffer more, because of those that cannot play? Will the Saints flounder — or be mediocre at best — without Reggie Bush? Will Michael Vick step up for the Eagles, and show he still has what it takes to be an elite NFL quarterback? Will the Steelers find success with Charlie Batch, and manage to squeak out one (or two) more wins, to take the Steelers to 4-0 upon Roethlisbergers return? Oh yeah — will Brett Favre retire, again, from the Minnesota Vikings? Talk to us.

Celebretweeting – Athletes Who Tweet

Facebook and the Twitter revolution have changed the way the world communicates.  Now we can share our lives – and our innermost thoughts – instantaneously – with anyone who will listen!

Over the past several months, however, athletes and celebrities have jumped on the social media freight train, and it’s not always resulted in positive public relations.  Especially when it comes to an athlete’s “fan base”.  Good, bad or indifferent, there are people out there waiting to egg a celebrity on – create a story, circumstance, or lawsuit, based on (in all intents and purposes) a text message.

Former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver, Santonio Holmes, led the charge earlier this year when he told a Twitter follower to kill himself.  Not long after that incident, the NFL player then greeted Twitter followers with the message that it was “time to wake and bake”.

The slang term describes the action of smoking marijuana immediately upon waking from sleep.  The Pittsburgh Steelers subsequently traded Holmes to the New York Jets, whereupon his arrival he received a four-game suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

Also in the NFL, Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver, Chad Ochocinco, was fined $25,000 for Tweeting during the preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Ocho, apparently bored with the game, violated the prohibited period when players can use social media – 90 minutes prior to kickoff and until post-game media.  But the StubPass staff admits, the man can dance.  And can look manly doing it.  Seriously.  That’s one hell of a six-pack.

Former Kansas City Chiefs running back Larry Johnson also found himself in Twitter trouble, after posting a homophobic slur in response to a fan’s post, after the Chiefs suffered a loss to the San Diego Chargers.  Johnson was fined $213,000 and was eventually let go by Kansas City.

But Twitter isn’t just impacting the lives of NFL players and their followers.  The NBA fined Milwaukee Bucks player Brandon Jennings $7,500, after the player tweeted his excitement that the team had finally got back to “500”.

While there was no harm intended, Jennings violated the zero-tolerance rule of no tweeting during – or 45 minutes before and after – a game. Other NBA players who have received the same fines include New York Knicks’ Amar’e Stoudemire and Dallas Mavericks’ Tyson Chandler.

Many believe that athletes should censor their opinions, especially through social media platforms.  Others believe that those with celebrity status are revealing their true personalities when posting tweets or updates on the fly.

It is evident that sports organizations are recognizing the impact of social media, as they scramble to implement rules, codes of conduct and similar policies across the board.

What say you?  Should professional sports organizations monitor the “social media” of its employees?

Should professional sports organizations monitor the "social media" of its employees?

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NFL Quarterback Controversies

Controversy is nothing new in the NFL, and the 2010 season proves to be no different. As fans and teams ramp up for the regular season, there are several quarterback controversies brewing across the National Football League.

The Philadelphia Eagles are right in the middle of a controversy, after releasing veteran quarterback Donovan McNabb – picked up by the Washington Redskins. In McNabb’s wake, Philly finds themselves deciding between Michael Vick and Kevin Kolb. The plan, apparently, is for the Eagles to rotate both quarterbacks before making a firm decision.

Rumors state that the locker room is divided as to which quarterback the Eagles would like to start the 2010 regular season, but only time (and possibly performance) will tell.

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