- Matt Bowen provides some nice insight into the overload blitz that the Jets will use this week for the Chicago Tribune.
- Neil Hayes at the Chicago Sun-Times thinks that young players are emerging to take some heat off of general manager Jerry Angelo and his draft acumen. I remain unconvinced. These players are contributing but the difference makers are the older veterans.
- Clinton Portis told 106.7 The Fan that he thinks that the Donovan McNabb benching might have the Redskins playing scared (via the Jason Reid at The Washington Post, via Michael David Smith at profootballtalk.com):
“’That’s really been a big part of the problem around here,’ Portis said. ‘People start playing for safety. So it’s like, ‘I gotta play safe and sound, instead of going out on the limb and making plays.’ . . . If a guy scared in the locker room, he gonna always play scared.’”
- Andrew Brandt at the National Football Post takes a look at the current state of the collective bargaining negotiations between the NFL and the NFLPA. His prediction is not good news for those fans and players who don’t like the thought of an 18 game season as much as I do:
“Despite the apparent contradiction to the player safety initiatives, the 18-game season will happen as the complaints will be drowned out by the pronouncements of labor peace for the foreseeable future.”
- Kyle Shanahan is firing back at Donovan McNabb: (from Reid again, via Gregg Rosenthal at profootalltalk.com):
“I called Donovan on the phone, mentioned I wanted to have a conversation with him to find out what this was all about,” Kyle Shanahan said Friday, according to Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post. “And when I talked to Donovan [on Thursday], he said he didn’t say any of that.
“I’m like, ‘Well yeah, your agent did, which to me is you.’ And he said he didn’t agree with any of that, those words didn’t come out of his mouth, he didn’t tell his agent that stuff. So all I can go off is what Donovan tells me. And we’ve never had a confrontation all year, never had an argument, everything’s been good.”
This is pretty much just cowardice on McNabb’s part. I’m glad Shanahan is calling him out.
- The headline of the day comes from the New York Post: “Rex puts best foot forward to accomplish feat”
- Bart Hubbuch at the Post on the improvement in Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez‘s shoulder overnight:
“It was a Christmas Eve miracle!”
Perhaps he was being a tad sarcastic.
The shoulder was a welcome distraction from head coach Rex Ryan‘s personal difficulties.
“Rex Ryan is a believer in “Homecoming Heroes,” a term he uses for players returning to their home cities or college towns performing above their standard level, but he will not allow himself to think of the Chicago area, where he spent his high school years.
“‘The teacher had it in for me,’ Ryan said. ‘Lots of C’s and D’s.’”
One Final Thought
Mike Florio at profootballtalk.com highlights the dichotomy in performing well enough to be considered for head coaching positions in the NFL.
“It’s unclear how hot of a candidate (Bears offensive coordinator, Mike) Martz is or will be. Much of it depends on how his offense will perform in the 2010 postseason — and whether the available jobs will be filled before Chicago’s run has ended.”