Apr 28, 2011
For the first time in a long while, we have actual football to discuss. It is NFL Draft day everyone! Of course, we also have more courtroom stuff to talk about, and this time, there has been some real progress toward the off-season starting in earnest. We think. Whatever the case, we do have the draft to talk about tonight, and there’s a chance (again, we think) free agency might not be long after. For the breakdown there, we’ll give way to people smarter than us.
Judge Nelson denies NFL’s request for a stay… Judge Susan Nelson, opining that the “irreparable harm” suffered by the players in a potential long lockout outweighs the damage that would be done to the owners if her ruling to overturn the lockout is not stayed, decided to deny the NFL’s request to stay her lockout-blocking ruling upon appeal. This is somewhat of a surprise; although most legal experts expected Nelson to side with the players in the preliminary injunction hearing, they also expected Nelson to issue a stay of the ruling while the NFL pursued an appeal with the 8th Circuit Court. But Nelson’s opinion is clear: her original 89-page ruling shut down the NFL’s arguments, and her ruling to deny the stay strengthened her original points even further. Obviously, the players are hailing this as a victory, as expected, while the league is still trying to hang in limbo as long as it possibly can. The decertified NFLPA sent letters to players and agents declaring the 2011 league year open, and agents have already started contacting teams about their free agents. But the NFL, also expectedly, wants to wait on a stay ruling from the 8th Circuit before proceeding with “business as usual.” The NFL is toeing a thin line of legality/contempt, and the players’ counsel will certainly take notes on everything that happens during this weird “lockout purgatory” period. It’s all a bunch of frustrating mumbo jumbo, but the bottom line for you draft nuts is that we would not expect trades of actual players during the draft tonight (sorry, Kevin Kolb), although we wouldn’t wager our life savings on it at this point.
NFL DRAFT WITH THE GURU STAFF
Hey, we’re as anxious for real football as anyone, and because of it we’re going all-out during the draft tonight. Before the festivities start at 8 PM, we implore you to get ahead of the curve by reading our comprehensive NFL Draft preview, breaking down team needs from a fantasy slant. You can also get an in-depth preview on every skill position player who is worth a damn in our pre-draft rookie report. And what’s more, if your team selects an obscure lineman from Northwest Montana A&M, Tony Pauline from TFYdraft.com will have him written up in our extensive rookie player profiles, which provide scouting reports on just about every draft-eligible player with a pulse (skill position or not). We don’t think that’s hyperbolic.
And once the draft kicks off at 8 PM, we’ll have you covered, no matter your tonic.
Tonight, staff writer Matt Brown and I (Joe Dolan) will be hosting a live chat on the site, lasting throughout the first round. Our intention isn’t strictly to provide a question-answer format, but more of a running commentary both from our end and yours. We’ll talk from a fantasy standpoint and offer up any interesting tidbits on the players taken, even if they don’t project as impact fantasy guys. We’re sure it’ll be a good time. And it’ll be a great chance to get to know Matt, who lives and breathes college football and might know more about these players than the teams drafting them. Stay tuned to our Twitter feed and Facebook page for links to the chat, which should be up sometime this morning.
Concurrently, John Hansen and Matt Camp will be hosting an NFL Draft special on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio (XM 147/Sirius 211) from 8-11 PM, in what we believe is an industry first – a national radio program covering the NFL Draft from a fantasy slant. Then, tomorrow, John and I will be doing the same for the second and third rounds (when a lot of skill-position players are expected to go), also from 8-11 PM. Please join us and our guests, it’ll be a great time.
- Joe Dolan