Thursday brought us a long, tense day of labor negotiations, and now an absolutely crucial time continues in New York today. Elsewhere, a decision in Tennessee leaves the league with one less capable veteran quarterback.
Collins retires … If you take a look at the numbers – 3,439 completions (9th); 6,193 attempts (9th); and 40,441 yards (11th) – the average fan probably wouldn’t guess they belong to Kerry Collins. After a somewhat underrated 16-year career, the 38-year-old Collins opted to retire Thursday, thus ending speculation that he’d re-sign in Tennessee and hold the starting QB job while rookie Jake Locker tries to adjust to the pro game.
As a fellow product of Penn State, I salute Kerry Collins for an undefeated 1994 season.
Collins had an up-and-down career, beginning when he was the 5th overall pick out of Penn State in the 1995 draft and the first ever pick of the expansion Carolina Panthers. He proceeded to lead the team to the NFC Championship game in his second year and the team’s second year. But his career with the Panthers and then the Saints in the ‘90s was derailed by problems with alcohol before he went through rehab and resurrected his career [...]
A slow time of year for news is even slower during this holiday weekend, which means an abbreviated blog today. Here is a look at some of the news, notes, and nuggets from around the league.
We’ve gotten some interesting tidbits from Camp Alex, the 49er player-run workouts led by QB Alex Smith. However, one of the most important components of the team’s offense has been rehabbing across the country. RB Frank Gore broke his hip in November, but Smith said the updates he’s gotten on Gore have been “encouraging.” Also, Smith noted that Gore should ready when he hits the field since he met with RB coach Tom Rathman extensively before the lockout to learn the new offense.
A few weeks back, we learned that the #1 overall pick, QB Cam Newton, would be working with former Panther QB Chris Weinke to learn the team’s new offense. Newton got a playbook on the one day the lockout was lifted, so he’s been able to share that with Weinke. Newton is also getting help from former NFL QB Ken Dorsey, who played for new Panther OC Rob Chudzinski at the University of Miami and with the Browns. Dorsey’s knowledge of Chudzinski’s offense [...]
Is Michael Crabtree hurt or healthy? Is the lockout almost over or is there still a lot of work to be done? Is Carson Palmer finished in Cincinnati? We have a lot of questions with few concrete answers.
Crabtree says he’s fine … On Tuesday, the Sacramento Bee reported that 49er WR Michael Crabtree has been bothered by his left foot, which he had surgery on in 2009. Crabtree has sat out workouts for much of the Alex Smith-led sessions, but on Wednesday, he told reporters that everything was fine. And hey! Here’s Crabtree putting on shoes. Crabtree has caught some passes during workouts, and 49er OT Joe Staley stuck up for the receiver. Reporters have been allowed to watch only 30 minutes and haven’t seen Crabtree do much, but he’s insisted that he’s been active. So, if Crabtree is feeling even the slightest bit of discomfort, it probably isn’t a bad thing that he’s taking it easy during informal workouts. We really have no idea how significant the discomfort is though, and this is just one more story that makes us look forward to real football in September.
What $2 million looks like
Investigating the Cincinnati area real estate market … [...]
The big news Friday morning is that some owners are apparently resisting movements on the labor front, but that should not surprise anyway. Instead, we focus on the happiness of a Jacksonville tight end and the running game in New York.
Lewis looking for more … Jaguar TE Marcedes Lewis emerged as one of the league’s most complete players at the position in 2010, and he was also a very viable fantasy option because of his knack for getting into the endzone. After his strong season, the Jaguars opted to put the franchise tag on Lewis – a move he is not pleased with. Of course, we have no idea if a franchise tag will mean anything until the labor mess is resolved, but Lewis said he wants a long-term deal to stay in Jacksonville and feels he’s put in the work necessary over the last five years to warrant more than just a one-year tag. Lewis caught 58 passes for 700 yards and 10 TDs last season, and the numbers certainly jumped out considering he had a total of 7 TDs in his first four seasons. All the numbers were career bests, and he ranked 7th among TEs with an [...]
The whole temporary stay thing is starting to sound permanent, as the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has yet to rule on a stay that would allow the lockout to continue through the appeals process. But that doesn’t mean there is no court activity to discuss…
NFL files brief, gets NHL’s support … The wheels are in motion in the NFL’s appeal to the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, as the league filed its brief opposing Judge Susan Nelson’s injunction that lifted to the lockout. The NFL’s argument features more of the same points that we’ve been hearing over and over: the NFLPA’s decertification is a sham, Nelson didn’t have jurisdiction to lift the lockout, lifting the lockout causes harm to the league, etc. We’ve heard it all before, and we’ll continue to hear the same things. In the meantime, someone please take away Reggie Bush’s Twitter account.
We’re still waiting for the court to rule on granting the league a stay, although it already granted a temporary stay, which is why we still haven’t seen free agency. In the event that the lockout is lifted, the NFL has yet to decide on rules for operating without a new [...]
The draft is quickly approaching, but most of the focus remains on the mediation discussions taking place in Minnesota. With the gag order in place, not a lot of information has come out from either side, but it won’t stop us from keeping a close eye on the situation with the hope that some good news will finally come.
Mediation to resume Tuesday … after the two sides met for 14 hours over last Thursday and Friday. With both sides being ordered to keep the details of their meetings quiet, the most we’ve gotten in terms of news is sources claiming that the break in mediation is related to the sensitivity of the talks, with one of the lead plaintiffs, Carl Eller, noting that the two sides are moving forward and were sent home on Friday with “homework” to think about over the three-day break. Another source said the two sides are “serious” when it comes to the negotiations and the possible ramifications if things were to break down again. In addition to their legal counsel, the league was represented by Commissioner Roger Goodell, Patriot owner Robert Kraft, Chief owner Clark Hunt, Panther owner Jerry Richardson, Steeler President Art Rooney II, [...]
Well, here we are. It is March 3. The day of reckoning is upon us. Despite seemingly endless mediated talks in Washington over the last couple weeks, we are a mere hours away from the CBA expiring with no new deal in place.
March 3 arrives … The CBA expires tonight, and we await word on what happens to football in the immediate future. While a new deal seems highly unlikely, there is still hope that the two sides agree to extend the deadline and bargain for a few more days or weeks, meaning there has been some progress and a lockout could be avoided. If that’s not the case, then it remains possible that the NFLPA will decide to decertify before the day ends, meaning the union will cease to exist and individual antitrust lawsuits may be filed. And, of course, we still face the threat of the owners locking out the players. Once again, we recommend reading Andrew Brandt’s take at the National Football Post, where he lays out all the possibilities. Fasten your seatbelts, things are about to get interesting. We’ll continue to hope for the best.
Hasselbeck far from deal … With the negotiation deadline coming tonight, the [...]