I Am Good On Peyton Manning

Peyton Manning at the Line, making calls

Are you counting neck surgeries? I think you are wrong.

The deadline looms for the Colts and Peyton Manning to make a decision about his future in Indy.  Will he be cut before the roster bonus?  Will Indy keep him and draft Andrew Luck (or RG3 – holding out hope) anyways and pay two quarterbacks more than the GDP that Indy puts out in a year?

Nobody knows exactly what is going to happen, so of course the speculation has been rampant since the last game of the season in which Indy cemented their pick atop the 2012 Draft.  The prevailing rumor mill has Peyton being dismissed for the guy with the craziest neck beard in California and Peyton hitting the market.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Peyton as a person.  I think he is a great role model for countless kids across the country, learning how to play QB the right way as well as carrying himself in a professional manner.  It is arguable that he will go down as one of the greatest to play, despite his brother finding a way to win more Super Bowls than him at this point in their careers.

But to be perfectly honest, Peyton has had more neck surgeries than most WWE wrestlers will ever have, all in the course of a year.  Bones have been fused, nerves aren’t quite the same and his main issue is that he can’t feel the triceps on his throwing arm.  That’s a pretty big issue for a quarterback, let alone a human being that likes to use said arm.  So with that being said, of course he is being linked to Seattle.

I am not a huge Tavaris fan.  I think Tavaris is serviceable, and if given time (as he likes to hold the ball) he can make plays well enough to get this team through a few victories next year.  Some would argue that even Peyton with a dead arm is probably better than Tavaris, or Peyton going with his off arm may be more accurate than Jackson.  However, for a team that is reloading at all positions with youth, I don’t think going and getting a 35+ year old QB with a neck made up of solder & Gorilla Glue is the best option for the Hawks.  Between you and me, I would like to see Peyton go into the Hall of Fame sans a head halo, and at this point he seems to be on that route.

So this is my call out to Pete – let’s explore trading down and getting a QB in the 2nd or 3rd, maybe even later where these guys like to pan out.  Matty Flynn, everyone’s back-up-QB-turned-starter-de-jour was taken in the 7th round.  Here’s my vote for Brandon Weeden (yes, I know he is old, but still about 10 years younger that Manning) with that 2nd round pick.  Now that’s something I can get behind.

Jeremy Lin is Nothing Like Tim Tebow

Linsanity is taking over every sports outlet. As with any frenzy or mania, there starts to be comparisons to the last one. The comparison to Jeremy Lin that keeps coming up is how he is like Tim Tebow. These two are nothing alike.

Coming out of high school Tebow was a highly touted recruit. He went to one of the most prestigious football schools in America, Florida. The new Jesus played in and won two national championships in Florida. Oh, and he went on some little trophy call the Heisman. He was already one of the most popular players in all of football before ever getting to the NFL. The Broncos traded up and took Tebow in the first round of the NFL draft. Fans in Denver begged for Kyle Orton to get benched in favor of Tebow. When Denver played at Miami, the Dolphins had a Tim Tebow day. How does a home team celebrate a player on the other team? Because everyone loved him. Tebow was basically known by everyone in America before he ever started a game in the NFL.

Jeremy Lin had a harder time getting to play in an NBA game. Lin couldn’t even get an athletic scholarship to his hometown college of Stanford. He played basketball at Harvard, hardly known for its athletics, Ivy league schools don’t even give athletic scholarships. After finishing up his four years at Harvard and getting his degree, Lin applied for the NBA draft but wasn’t taken. The Golden State Warriors signed him as a free agent to a partially guaranteed contract out of college. He played in 29 games but didn’t even average 10 minutes a game. He bounced between the NBA and the NBDL throughout last season. The Warriors cut him before this season. The Houston Rockets claimed him off of waivers but eventually let him go before he played in any regular season games. He was picked up off of waivers by the New York Knicks. He was only on the team temporarily until Baron Davis came back from injury. It took a bunch of injuries, including another one to Davis to get a shot. Lin came in during a game against the New Jersey Nets and went “H.A.M.” for 25 points and 7 assists. He started the next seven games. Almost no one knew who Jeremy Lin was before that game.

Another difference between the two is their level of play during games. Lin actually is playing well during this stretch of 7-1 for the Knicks. Tebow didn’t play well at all. The Broncos defense was playing insanely well during Broncos run to the playoffs. In 11 regular season starts, Tebow went 7-4 and didn’t carry the team at all in most of those games. Tebow had a completion percentage of 46.7, which is terrible for an NFL quarterback. Tebow was 34th in the NFL in completion percentage, which most of you know there are only 32 teams. Jeremy Lin’s shooting percentage was 50.4 during his run. Which would be 23rd in the NBA, with only two other guards in the top 25. Tebow threw for an average of 150 yards per game. Lin averaged 24.6 points a game and 8.6 assist per game. Lin’s numbers haven’t been matched by anyone in NBA history during the first seven starts of a career.

Another factor in the frenzy is race. It can’t be ignored. A few people have gone about bringing it up the wrong way. Floyd Mayweather said on Twitter that the only reason people care about Lin’s success is because he is Asian. That is ridiculous! That isn’t the only reason. It, however, is part of the reason. There has never been an Asian-American starter in NBA history. This does add to the intrigue of the story. We have seen the white quarterback that was a superstar in college go on to have an excellent NFL career. Lin is bringing an aspect to the NBA that has never been seen before, which opens our minds and breaks down stereotypes that have been in place with the NBA for years.

One other major difference is that half the people loved Tebow and the other half hated him. Lin seems to have almost everyone on his side. Both guys are men of faith. Tebow seemed to use his fame as a platform to promote his religion. That gets under people’s skin. Lin wants to become a pastor after his playing career but isn’t using his fame to push his religion. ESPN has covered them both to an extreme but Lin’s play has justified his coverage, Tebow’s not so much. That could have been another reason for all the dislike of Tebow.

It will be interesting to see how each of their careers play out. We will see how each will affect the game they are playing and the people watching them. I am going to go have a few “Lin” and tonics and hopefully I am not Tebowing over a toilet later.

Are the Winter X Games Really That Cool?

Only awesome thing to see at Winter X Games

A couple weeks ago, I turned on ESPN a few times  and saw the Winter X Games were on. I watched parts of a few competitions and realized it was one of the most boring sporting events I have ever seen.

The first event I saw was some big air ski event. It was just guy after guy going off a jump and doing two to three spins and landing forward or backwards, backwards being the “harder” of the two. That was all there was too it. I expected to see something crazy. Nope. Just 720′s over and over. Every now and then a competitor would throw in a back flip with a twist but that even got repetitive.

Some of the other competitions were pretty much the same thing, except they had something else attached to their feet or body. Sometimes it was a snowboard, other times it was a snowmobile. Those were essentially the same trick over and over.

Outside of the racing competitions, the Winter X Games are glorified figure skating competitions. I actually get excited when Scott Hamilton does a back-flip or Brian Boitano hits a triple axel.

When judges come into play, the sport loses value. Shaun White does the exact same trick as some nobody and gets a 93, while the other guy gets an 84. Don’t want that nobody ruining the little ratings the Winter X Games are getting. Slide that judge a couple Hamiltons and a Lincoln and keep the big names on top.

The average fan doesn’t see the difference in the technicality of the trick. They just see 54o with a McTwist landed without falling. Followed by the same trick by the next guy. Then, the scores come up and there is an eight point difference. It is just kind of lame.

I know the Winter X Games used to be a couple weeks long. Now, it is down to essentially a weekend. I wouldn’t be surprised if it got completely fazed out in the next few years.

I just picture the Winter X Games played by Bolo Yeung aka Chung Li , being held by the head by Jean Claude Van Damme, aka Frank Dukes and saying “matay.” Just give Winter X Games you are finished.

I Want the NBA Too – but the Kings?

After what seems like yesterday, the discussions are back.  Land is being purchased.  SoDo is the target for potentially a new multi-purpose (NHL & NBA) arena in Seattle.  With these discussions, this means a team for each is on the way.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am excited at the prospects of not just one, but two sports putting roots down here in the Northwest.  One, a sport returning since stolen only a few short years ago, and another which hasn’t been around since the 1920′s.  However, our collective Seattleite memories are pretty short considering the agony that NBA fans in this region went through as Clay Bennett up and bought the team from the clutches of an apathetic local owner.

Except this time, it is a Seattleite turned San Franciscan that is looking to uproot another NBA franchise from a community in which it has been a part of since 1985.

Granted, the history of the Kings has been quite a nomadic one.  Moving from Rochester to Cincy, Kansas City and now Sacramento, the Kings were living the current NBA business model before it was cool.  Their history is nothing like the one of the Sonics, granted as an expansion team in 1967 to Seattle, winning a championship in 1979 as the Seattle Supersonics and being unceremoniously moved to the heart of America to blossom into one of the leagues best young teams.

When the Kings moved to Sacramento, I would have tipped the age scales at 3 years old.  I don’t remember them as the Kansas City Kings, but as the Sacramento Kings, in which there is an entire generation of fans which grew up with them as only that.

Now they are on the way out if every rumor is to be believed.  A new stadium deal must be reached by March 1st or the relocation buzzards can officially circle around the Power Balance Arena.  David Stern is working with mayor Kevin Johnson (yes, the Kevin Johnson that was a thorn in the Sonics side as a member of the Phoenix Suns) in an attempt to “keep” the Kings in Sacramento.  An all too familiar story, as Stern supportively was behind that too here in Seattle before the Sonics moved.

Now the shoe is on the other foot and the excitement of the local NBA fanbase, at least the one that voices into sports radio locally is nothing but excited.  But isn’t the way Seattle is acquiring the team the same way that Oklahoma City did the same?  There is an air of hypocrisy that I can’t get my head around.  I want the NBA back now as much as the next guy, but at the expense of another community losing their team?

This hasn’t been said much, but I think our tactic should be different.  Expansion.  Start from scratch.  Authentically build another Seattle Supersonics.  No history coming in but the one that has been paused as the other team left.  No robbing a team from another community.  Let us not forget how we felt when the Sonics left, and doing the same thing to a community in which the Kings are the only act in town.

Joe Paterno’s Legacy

All it took was a week of Super Bowl talk and the Penn State scandal is already on the back burner, maybe even locked up in some Tupperware on a shelf in the fridge.

Just a week ago, the back and forth on Joe Paterno’s legacy was the hottest topic in sports, if not the country. People were on the “Joe Paterno is the worst human being alive” wagon for a few weeks. Then, he passed away and they were on the “Joe Paterno was the greatest man alive” wagon.

Which one is it people?

When history looks back on the JoePa is it going to shine favorably on him?

I think it will.

Joe Paterno’s good out weigh his alleged bad.  He coached at one school for 61 years and was head coach for 46 of those years. I can almost guarantee that will never happen again. I doubt anyone will even come close to that many years at one place.

Paterno donated, not thousands of dollars, but millions of dollars of his salary of the years to Penn State. All that money wasn’t donated to sports, it was donated to education. It didn’t benefit just his players, but every student that attend school in Happy Valley.

Remember JoePa touched many lives, not many kids.

Joe Paterno didn’t witness the crime, he was told about it second hand. Everyone wanted Paterno to do more, but he wasn’t the one that walked in on the Jerry Sandusky. The police should have already been contacted before Joe Paterno ever heard about it.

If we were going to place blame on anyone, it should be Mike McQueary. He is the only person that saw anything. He should have gone to the police.

Let’s say you saw a murder outside of your house. You don’t call your mom and let her know what you saw and expect her to figure it out. You call the police.

I can sit here and play the blame game for a few more paragraphs, but I won’t. The truth is Joe Paterno could have done more, however, McQueary should have done everything and he didn’t.

Joe Paterno was looked at as a great man for most of his life and will continue to be looked at as a great man going forward. Many people were positively influenced by him and for that they will always be grateful. Don’t let a bunch of outsiders who never met the man dictate how he will be perceived in history. See what the people who were around him for 61 years at Penn State have to say.


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