2013 NFL: What We Know (Hall of Fame Weekend Edition)
With training camps now in full swing, some guys have returned to form (i.e. being injury-prone Nancy boys) and others have forgotten to leave their offseason-type behaviors and shenanigans back home. Thanks to 24/7 sports “news” cycles, we all know who’s who before I even write about them. But there are some football-related jewels here.
— Camp Coughlin started out with a nice, emphatic sprint out of the gate. Victor Cruz was leaping like he had made the game-winning touchdown grab in the Super Bowl when he initially sprinted on the field.
— And naturally, Hakeem Nicks pulls up lame with a groin injury the following day. Thankfully, it is not serious.
— Kevin Kolb slips on a wet workout mat and injures his knee. I am NOT making this up.
— Oh by the way, welcome to the NFL and, potentially later, the lawsuit AGAINST the NFL, Justin Pugh. The Giants’ rookie gets his first NFL concussion not even a full week into camp.
— The people who seemed to be Riled Up About Riley are some of the biggest hypocrites alive. They use ethnic slurs that would make Walt Kowalski stop and stare, mouth agape, with astonishment.
— Oh by the way, career-long injury-prone WRs Percy Harvin (hip; likely out for most of the season) and Jeremy Maclin (ACL; out for season) were lost before a single preseason game was played. Somehow, everyone yawns in unison.
— Jets camp has its first of surely dozens of its annual “anonymous Jet” quotes this week, as an unnamed Jets player was quoted as saying that rookie QB Geno Smith can do everything better than QB Mark Sanchez. Yes, and Urban Meyer is a lying, cheating snake. Tell us something we don’t know?
— The Bears seem to be under the impression that changing everything except the main culprit (Jay Cutler) will make them a viable postseason threat. You know, despite the fact that Cutler has almost singlehandedly sunk any chances for the Bears to make playoff runs with injuries, terrible games late in the season for three straight years now.
— If the Chargers were not so thin at LB, I wonder how much they would be letting Manti Te’o slide. If he were my teammate, they’d treat me like Mel Hall and ban me, like the New York Yankees did Hall after he relentlessly teased future legend Bernie Williams to the point of tears and crying home to mother, on the part of Williams.
— All is quiet on the Detroit Lions front. Hmmmmmm.
— The Vikes think they suddenly have the better end of the Harvin trade. Unless Patterson and Floyd pan out, notsofastmyfriend.
— Are the Jacksonville Jaguars still in the NFL?
— It’s only preseason, but depending on the outcome of tomorrow’s Hall of Fame game with the Miami Dolphins, Dallas Cowboys fans will either be chirping about how they are “Super Bowl Bound” or “it don’t matter anyway, it’s jess preseason!”
— If you listen to the Carolina Panthers, you’d think they were planning to run the football 60 times per game this season.
— Roddy White is usually good for a stupid, baseless quote once a week. They must have muzzled him this week.
— Washington Redskins fans are implored to have a good time traveling to Richmond, struggle to find parking and having to pay for both parking and attendance at Skins camp. Don’t you feel like even bigger schmucks than last season, when you proclaimed yourself “Kings of the NFC East” after a fluke season in which the Giants simply stopped caring to play football — or else you wouldn’t have even made the playoffs to begin with?
— Aaron Rodgers, fresh off his new mega contract, can now afford to pay us after swearing on his earnings that Ryan Braun, one of the biggest illegal substance abusers in Major League Baseball (but one of Rodgers’ friends), was innocent. How’s that working out? Rodgers strikes me as the type to renege.
— I keep warning people, but the Rams will be the Greatest Show on Turf Lite this season with all the speed they are featuring on offense. Plus their defense is going to be pretty damn good (again).
— So Michael Crabtree (Achilles) is out for season, and now alleged “homophobe” Chris Culliver (ACL) is out for season. Are people still stubbornly saying that San Francisco is the team to beat? They weren’t going to be, even before these injuries. They DEFINITELY aren’t now. They lost too many key players to free agency.
— Oh, and Tarel Brown is TIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT right now, as his agent (and Brown’s own oversight) cost him $2 Million that he will likely seek to recoup from the 49ers. Good luck in preventing THAT from becoming acrimonious. For form’s sake, we hope this ends amickably (as Lil Mo of “R&B Divas” would pronounce it). Amicable settlements are always good.
— Finding a new gun or a new murder victim in the Aaron Hernandez case is like finding another instance in which the New England Patriots cheated during the period when they “won” three Super Bowls. It just never gets old, and appears to be never-ending in both instances.
— It is scary to think about how hard Greg Schiano is pushing his Tampa Bay Buccaneers. No one is going to want to see them this year, that’s for sure.
— In a move that Jay-Z would approve of, after Nas “Ethered” his whole persona a little over 10 years ago, the Houston Texans went out and signed the guy who destroyed Matt Schaub‘s face in 2012, Joe Mays. No word if Mays immediately said, “You?!?!?!” in incredulous fashion, upon seeing Schaub at camp.
— Drew Brees is likely demanding an explanation for something or another, while declaring the Saints to be the best offense in the NFL. He better hope his DEFENSE is, or it won’t matter.
— Chiefs camp has been relatively quiet. Wait until some backup makes a great throw, catch or tackle in practice and watch Andy Reid find a way to spin it into a high-round draft pick for the guy — who may never start for anyone ever again.
— Camp will really reach its first apex with the first full week of preseason games next week. Let’s just hope everyone else who hasn’t been injured thus far, stays healthy from here. Lofty hopes, but there’s nothing worse than watching a team’s hopes get dashed before they have even played their first regular season game.
— Then again, if one player dashes your hopes, you were likely not going far this season anyway.
— I reiterate, Dick Sherman is the best CB in the NFL. Period. How many Jets fans, who would have bristled at that notion last year, now suddenly find themselves apathetic in the discussion, or actually agree now?
— Oh, and the one guy Richard Sherman doesn’t trash talk? Larry Fitzgerald. Why? Maybe because their families all hung out this summer and there is mutual respect.