Football

Hail to the [Washington football team]

Featured image It looks like the wave of wokeness will cause the Washington Redskins finally to change their name. Owner Daniel Snyder says the team is undertaking a thorough review of the team’s name. It would be mighty surprising if the review concluded that “Redskins” is fine. Has Snyder had a genuine change of heart about the team name? Of course not. He’s simply come under intense pressure from corporate America. Notably, »

WaPo columnist: NFL owners chose knee on the neck for George Floyd

Featured image Colin Kaepernick is back in the public’s consciousness. Joe Lockhart, the former White House press secretary, says the Minnesota Vikings should offer him a job. That’s just what Minnesota and the Vikings need now — a quarterback controversy involving Kaepernick. But Lockhart’s suggestion seems wise compared to this column by Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post. She writes: Two knees. One protesting in the grass, one pressing on the back »

NFL considers offering incentives to discriminate on the basis of race [UPDATED]

Featured image Today, the National Football League is considering a proposal to enable teams to improve their draft position by hiring minority candidates for coaching and executive positions. As I understand the proposal, a team that hires a minority head coach would move up six spots in the third round of the following year’s draft. Hiring a minority general manager would enable a team to move up ten spots in that round. »

My favorite NFL draft ever

Featured image The wide world of sports has become a narrow strip — boxing from Nicaragua, with the possibility of baseball from South Korea and soccer from Germany. However, the NFL threw us a tasty morsel last week. For two nights and one day, sports fans could savor the NFL draft. And savor it, we did. The average television audience during Round 1 of the draft was 15.6 million, a 37 percent »

Remembering Mike Curtis

Featured image It must have been in the Fall of 1960 that I went with some neighbors to watch our local high school football team, Wheaton, play powerhouse Richard Montgomery in the final game of the Montgomery County football season. Wheaton was hoping to gain a share of the County championship with Richard Montgomery. Optimism did not abound. Richard Montgomery had a star running back named Mike Curtis. Rumor had it that »

Remembering Bobby Mitchell

Featured image Bobby Mitchell, star of the Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins, and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, died yesterday. He was 84. No cause of death was given. Mitchell broke the Redskins’ color barrier, but said he wanted to be remembered first and foremost as a great player, rather than an historically significant one. In this post, I will honor that wish. You can read about his historical »

Should the NFL postpone its draft?

Featured image Earlier this month, the National Football League decided to go ahead with its free agent signing period even though other sports were shutting down due to the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak. Unlike the playing of actual games, free agency required no physical contact. Every part of the the process could be performed remotely except for physical examination of the free agents, and that could be deferred. Nonetheless, some claimed that going »

Thank you, NFL, for proceeding with free agency

Featured image Last weekend, I wrote about whether the NFL should proceed with free agency. I thought it should. Some football writers thought it shouldn’t. Awarding big contracts to players during a time like this would be a “bad look,” they argued. The NFL went ahead with free agency. Football fans had something fun to read and think about during these somber days. Teams communicated remotely with players and their agents. Physical »

The coronavirus and the NFL, Part Two [UPDATED]

Featured image The NFL “league year” doesn’t begin when the regular football season starts. Nor does it begin with the Hall of Fame pre-season game or the opening of training camps. The NFL deems its “league year” to start when the scramble for free agents commences. That’s scheduled for tomorrow with the beginning of the “legal tampering” period. Hard core NFL fans look forward to this day every year. This year, with »

What to Watch For in the Super Bowl

Featured image First of all, the game should be good, and the teams are relatively new to the national spotlight. (“What do the Super Bowl and the Democratic presidential field have in common? No Patriots!”) I am not one of those who think the commercials are more interesting than the game; on the contrary, to the extent I watch them, I often find myself scratching my head over what product or service »

Tigers at the White House

Featured image The national champion LSU Tigers–I would say, the unbelievably talented LSU Tigers–visited the White House on Friday. Star wide receiver JaMarr Chase tweeted this; I know about it because it is all over Twitter, with 104,000 likes and 22,000 retweets, and one of my daughters pointed it out: It’s an exciting day in the White House. #GetTheGat @SubtweetShawn3 pic.twitter.com/UtgRBP5fxQ — Ja’MarrChase (@Real10jayy__) January 17, 2020 I think President Trump will »

Greatest college QB ever?

Featured image Before the start of the college championship football game on Monday night, a collection of all-time college great players was onstage at the New Orleans Superdome. Nearly all of them were running backs, including Archie Griffin, Barry Sanders, Herschel Walker, Earl Campbell, and Jim Brown. There were also descendants of Gale Sayers, Red Grange, and Jim Thorpe. Missing, of course, was O.J. Simpson who may be the best college running »

Kirk Cousins delivers

Featured image I’ve been a fan of Kirk Cousins since his days at Michigan State and a big fan since the Washington Redskins drafted him in the fourth round of the 2012 draft, ostensibly to back up Robert Griffin III, their number one pick that year. I say ostensibly because there’s reason to believe that Washington’s coach, Mike Shanahan, envisaged Cousins, not Griffin, as his long term starter. Doubting Griffin’s ability to »

RIP, “Golden Wheels” Dubenion

Featured image For my money, the coolest football nickname ever belongs to one-time Buffalo Bills wide receiver Elbert Dubenion. He was called “Golden Wheels.” Come to think of it, his real name has to be one of the coolest ever, too. Dubenion died yesterday at age 86. His death occurred on the 55th anniversary of the Bills’ victory over the San Diego Chargers in the AFL title game of 1964. Jack Kemp »

What’s the difference between American football and English football?

Featured image The punchline to this joke was supplied 20 years ago by a soccer fan I met on my way to a match in London: American football, you get up, get dressed, and go to the game. English football, you get up, get dressed, get drunk, and go the game. Twenty years later, I’m not sure the joke applies. The difference may now reside in where you get drunk. In American »

Kaepernick workout leads to job with Redskins

Featured image The Washington Redskins were one of the teams that attended Colin Kaepernick’s workout in Georgia last month. Their attendance was hard to explain because signing Kaepernick made no sense for the team. But now, the Redskins have made a signing based (at least in part) on what they saw during the Kaepernick workout. The Skins signed to their practice squad one of the wide receivers to whom Kaepernick threw passes. »

Why Colin Kaepernick might not get an NFL job

Featured image During a recess late in a trial where the plaintiff alleged he had been fired due to his race and/or his age, a federal district court judge said to his law clerk: Sure, this guy was discriminated against. But he wasn’t discriminated against because he’s black and he wasn’t discriminated against because he’s over 40. He was discriminated because he’s an a**hole. It might well be the case that, a »