Alright, so I said that last week’s analysis of Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback column would be a one-off event. It was something we were forced to do because there was nothing else to talk about. But my fingers were crossed as I typed that (it look like five minutes).
Based on the lack of interesting news circulating around the NFL world on this Monday, we’re going to go back to the PK well, reacting to some of the tidbits King hits on in this week’s piece.
King devoted about 94.6 percent of his column to book recommendations, so this won’t be quite as long-winded as it was last week. But here goes it…
I think if I were an NFL team watching Plaxico Burress walk out of prison today in upstate New York, I’d be thinking, “How can we get him at a reasonable price?” As I wrote last week, he’s going to be supremely motivated, and for not franchise-receiver money, to be a star again. It’s a long shot that he can be one, but the risk is well worth it, particularly in a sport where you can control guaranteed money so well.
I think if I were an NFL blogger watching Plaxico Burress walk out of prison today, I’d be watching this video…
…And I’d be thinking, “This is not how I’d walk out of prison, even after a short sentence. I would be running and screaming and smiling and maybe even naked.” But to each his own. I’d also make an effort to constantly rewind and re-watch Drew Rosenhaus’ Hollywood-style run-and-leap into his client’s waiting arms. That was way too awkward. Apparently, Drew didn’t do enough online research regarding how to treat those moments:
By the way, here are the odds on where Plax will land, according to BetOnline.com:
Philadelphia Eagles: 9/4
New York Jets: 7/2
Chicago Bears: 9/2
Minnesota Vikings: 7/1
St. Louis Rams: 7/1
Oakland Raiders: 9/1
Pittsburgh Steelers: 18/1
My hope is that both sides return to their secret lair and continue the bargaining that was begun last week in Chicago. It’s a great idea. It’s also an idea that needs to stay underground. There’s a reason a gag order is a good idea sometimes. It prevents angry people from spoiling a chance at real momentum. There was no need, for instance, for the league’s attorney, Paul Clement, to say Friday after the hearing in St. Louis that continued negotiations mean the union’s decertification is a sham.
“How does that build any kind of trust?” asked a players association spokesman. “Their lawyers risks crippling the process with remarks like that.”
Whether Clement speaks the truth is one matter; the point is, when the two sides are getting somewhere, why lob a grenade?
Clement said this specifically: “I think there’s no question that to the extent with what’s going on is continuing negotiations. I think what that underscores is that the union has not disappeared forever.”
This was something Mike Florio ranted about earlier today, and it’s not even a controversial issue because I can’t imagine that anyone would disagree. The lawyers are the only folks benefiting from a long-term stoppage of professional football. DeMaurice Smith and several players continue to state that the owners are the ones who “don’t want football” but the players’ dissolving their union and handing things over to lawyers has been the most damaging step of this entire process thus far.
Right now, both sides need to shut up, kick the lawyers out of the room and save the 2011 season before it’s too late.
An app for the iPhone and Android phones has been introduced to help non-medical people monitor head injuries when a medical professional isn’t present (the Concussion Recognition and Response app, $3.99). “It allows people on the scene to witness what may be a head injury and walk them through a cursory exam of the athlete,” said one of the app’s developers, assistant professor Jason Mihalik of UNC.
Sounds sort of awesome, but what if people begin to use this instead of trained professionals, who cost more than $3.99? Could this become a crutch? Should laymen really be conducting any sort of exams to analyze head injuries, regardless of how “cursory” they are? Just throwing it out there…
The Top 100 update: How is Ben Roethlisberger the 41st-best player in football, unless his peers docked him some for his off-field misdeeds? He’s won two Super Bowls, he’s 29, has a big arm and … well, there’s no justification for having him 41st, in my opinion. But the lists go on. I may have Mike Wallace higher than you’d figure. The same goes for Justin Smith, who has been reborn in San Francisco after being mostly invisible in Cincinnati. Watch out for Wallace. With so much speed (Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown) in Pittsburgh’s four-wide formations, you can bet Wallace is going to see less safety help over the next couple of years when Roethlisberger throws deep.
In our opinion, Roethlisberger is the fourth-best quarterback in the game. On paper and in terms of what he’s accomplished, he’s right there with guys like Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers, who I’d expect to be close to the top five. He should probably be in the top 10, no lower than 12 or 13. Embarrassing.