Thursday, September 21, 2017
Around the NFL (9/2/10 – 9/8/10)
By Jason Lewis (Sports Editor)
Published September 4, 2010


Can any AFC team knock off the Colts?

Outside of the New York Jets, who wins the 2010 offseason hype award, it’s hard to believe that any AFC team can make a run at the Super Bowl.

Maybe the San Diego Chargers, who play in one of the easiest divisions in the NFL.  The AFC West is just bad, so the Chargers should be able to rack up a lot of wins.

The AFC East is going to be a dogfight.  The Jets are getting all of the publicity, but remember, they were a 9-7 team last year who barely made the playoffs, and the New England Patriots won that division last year.  Don’t bet against Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

The AFC North…blah.  The Cincinnati Bengals, Baltimore Ravens, and Pittsburgh Steelers all look like solid teams, but none of them look like world-beaters.  That’s going to be a tough division, but it’s hard to see any of those teams as real contenders.  The most interesting thing to watch in that division is Bengals wide receivers Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens.  They have the potential to be really great together, or implode that locker room.

As for the AFC South, unless Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning gets hurt, they are going to run away with that division.

The Tennessee Titans are going to be a team to watch though.  After starting last year 0-6 with Kerry Collins at quarterback they finished the season 8-2 with Vince Young under center.  And running back Chris Johnson has stated that he plans on breaking Eric Dickerson’s single season rushing record.

McNabb might miss opener

Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb might have to wait a little longer for his fresh new start.  McNabb has not practiced since spraining his left ankle in the second preseason game against Baltimore.  He sat out the Redskins’ third preseason game and has watched practices with a black sleeve on his left leg.

McNabb will not play in the final preseason game and could miss the season opener against the Dallas Cowboys if he cannot practice soon.

Bengals blow $8 million in five months

Back in March the Bengals worked out wide receivers Antonio Bryant and Terrell Owens.  They decided to give Bryant a $28 million contract with $8 million guaranteed.

Well, the Bengals front office did not take into account that Bryant had a bad knee, and they must have just realized that he would not be healthy this year, so they decided to cut Bryant and eat the $8 million in guaranteed money that has been paid to Bryant.

Because Bryant has not been healthy the Bengals had to go out and sign Owens.

Somebody in the Bengals front office may be looking for a new job after offering a player with a major knee injury a $28 million contract.

Well now Bryant can hang out for the rest of this season, get healthy, and sign another big contract with another team next year.

Don’t feel bad for Bryant, he made $8 million for five months of work and never even had to put on the uniform.

Leinart benched!

Either Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt is trying to send a message, or Matt Leinart’s days in Arizona, and in the NFL, are numbered.

One knock on Leirnart is that he feels entitled.  Many believe that he pretty much rolled over and gave the job to Kurt Warner, and now it seems like he has not stepped up to the challenge to win the job over Derek Anderson.

If Leinart can’t beat out Anderson, it would be hard to believe that he could win a roster spot anywhere in the NFL.  And the word that Leinart did not really even compete proves a lot of the critics right.

When Whisenhunt named Anderson the starter for the Cardinals’ third preseason game he said the reason was because he just wanted first downs.  In two preseason games Leirnat failed to lead the Cardinals to any first downs.

Maybe Whisenhunt is trying to light a fire under Leinart, because what coach in their right mind would want to go with Anderson as their starting quarterback?  Not even the Cleveland Browns wanted to do that.  If the Browns don’t want you, then you’re just awful.

Polamalu’s hair insured for $1 million

Yes, you read that right.  Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu’s hair has been insured by Head and Shoulders, the shampoo brand that Polamalu endorses.

Polamalu’s trademark long flowing black hair is nearly three feet long, and has been pulled before during a game.

Then Kansas City Chiefs running back Larry Johnson once tackled Polamalu by the hair during a 49-yard interception return in a 2006 game.  The tackle is legal because hair hanging out of the back of the helmet is considered a part of the uniform.

As silly as it sounds, this is good for both Polamalu and Head and Shoulders.  Polamalu is able to make an income off of his hair, and what athlete would be better to endorse Head and shoulders?  Certainly not Tennessee Titans Chris Johnson with his trademark dreadlocks.

Fantasy Football

It’s that time of year again.  No, not quite the start of the regular season, that’s still a week away.  But it’s that time when a bunch of football fans gather around and act like they are general managers in the draft day war room.

The Black Fantasy Football League (BFFL) recently held their draft at the Cellar in Long Beach, which is a black owned establishment that has live music, a full bar and menu.

The league is entering its 12th season and the owners could not wait to talk trash to each other.  Having a live draft gives them an opportunity to not only fellowship, but to run their mouths at each other.

“It was kind of a disconnect (to have a computer draft),” league commissioner Vince Barner said.  “You didn’t have the same competitiveness with the pressure of everybody looking at you and yelling at you and screaming at you.  It makes for a better time.”

Barner is an avid fantasy football player because it gives him more of a vested interest in the games.

“I’m a Rams fan, and my team hasn’t done well the last few years,” Barner said.  “So this gives me something to cheer for.”

One unique feature about this league is that when they meet up at a bar to watch the games, the owner who had the lowest score from the previous week has to buy the first round of drinks.  If an owner is the low man a few weeks in a row, Barner jokingly said, “You’ve got problems.”


Categories: Football

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