The Steelers Rule

Posted: 05/26/2011 in NFL News, Team News

Recently, the NFL has passed a rule, saying that if players excessively hit other players illegally, their teams will be punished. The name of this rule? The Steelers Rule.

The rule in and of itself is bad enough, does the name really have to target one team? I’m not going to sit here and whine about the name though. I think the Steelers’ defensive players should be proud. I mean, the rule is named what it is because of Pittsburgh’s fierce style of defense. As far as I am aware, no other team can say their defense scares the commissioner and the rule-making committee. I think the rule should be called the “we-are-scared-of-the-Steelers’s-defense-so-we-are-going-to-make-rules-against-the-way-they-play-the-game” rule. Although, I don’t think it’s going to catch on…

Alright, back to the actual rule. I am not in favor of the contents of the rule, as I think that punishing the teams will not stop the injuries.

I believe the best way to combat the injuries of the players is to make them take certain actions to improve and maintain their health. Also, if you want my opinion, (which, if you are reading my blog, I’m sure you do) new rules should be enforced and new equipment should be used. I know, I know, I know, you just heard me say “I don’t like this new rule” and “we need more rules” in the same paragraph. However, I don’t like this rule because it is punishing the TEAMS for the PLAYERS’ mistakes.

(I did not expatiate to write about the specific actions I would make the players take or the new rules I would impose because I have a persuasive speech assignment in English class which talks about these, and I will be posting it as soon as it is finished.)

Okay, so remember when there was a lockout? Then remember when there wasn’t a lockout? Well, there’s a lockout again.

Could someone please tell the court to make up their minds? So, to skip the high-level vocabulary, and gigantic words, I have condensed the story into the following script.

NFL: Players, you are now locked out.
Players: That stinks.

Court: You are no longer locked out.
Players: Yaaaaaaaaaa-
*Court cuts the Players off*
Court: Sike! Now get the heck out of the stadiums.

When the lockout was first lifted, I did not have time to post about it. However, I am going to pretend that I predicted the lockout being put back into effect, so I look like an awesome football-analyst.

True Confessions of TTF (Teen Talks Football) aside, let’s get back to the story.

It’s not a very tough story to comprehend. Basically, there was a lockout, then there wasn’t, now there is. I could sit here and tell you every little quote that the players and/or coaches and/or judges said, but all they will tell you is the lockout is back on.

I hate to end a post with a sad note, so I will add that the NFL Draft has begun The first round is in the books and the third is currently underway. I hope that was a happy enough note to end on, because I have nothing else to say.

Violence

Posted: 04/11/2011 in NFL News

Here is a sonnet, written in iambic pentameter, about violence.

Iambic pentameter means that there are ten syllables every line. Each grouping of two syllables is called an “iamb”. A sonnet uses the rhyme scheme abab cdcd efef gg. Each letter represents a line of the poem, and the same letter means that those two lines rhyme.

To steal a life use words of hate, or throw
Insults degrading. Earth so green now red
With blood of men from which insults free flow.
The violence feeds the stomach of hate bread.

The sports of now are harmful games to play.
Hits vicious, injuries are of no lack.
The blood of players falling towards day,
An astronaut to orbit coming back.

An accident or not, the violence found
On Earth is harming people young and old.
It will keep progressing on with no sound.
A speaker without power, endless cold.

Violence is much too harsh, and too widespread.
If cease it does not, Earth so green turns red.

On Monday, Roger Goodell said that  “[the league] need[s] to do more [to prevent cheating], including the inclusion of HGH testing”. HGH, Human Growth Hormones, is alleged to increase muscles, improve  eyesight, and increase speed. Currently, the league has a rule against using HGH, but they are not allowed to test for HGH. This makes the rule unenforceable, unless the athlete admits to taking the drug. To fix this, Goodell is dead set on adding a mandatory HGH test for all players to the CBA deal, if it is ever put in place.

The players have very different feelings towards this, two of the differing opinions come from Derick Mason and Antonio Cromartie.

Mason said Wednesday that “[Goodell] needs to stop crying about blood tests and HGH. He needs to try to get a [labor] deal done, that’s what he needs to do. He’s been on this crusade about HGH, but he needs to be on a crusade about getting these owners together and trying to work out a deal. To me, he’s a joke, because every time I look, he’s talking about performance enhancements instead of talking about trying to figure out a way to make sure football is played in August.”

I agree with Mason, as the top priority at this point is getting a CBA deal in place. However, HGH testing would be part of the CBA, so, technically, Goodell is working on the Collective Bargaining deal. Although he is working on one detail of the deal, he is not working on the big picture, as Mason and I agree that he should.

Cromartie had a very different opinion Tweeting that he “Jus was reading an article about HGH testing in the NFL. I’m for it I’m not against it. If u against that mean you hiding something”. He later added, “i mean u shouldn’t have 2 cheat 2 get an edge just go out an play ball. God created us all differently so us the talents he blessed us with”.

Somehow I don’t think he is going to be nominated for any literature prizes anytime soon…

Once you get past the horrible grammar and just general ugliness of that statement, he has a point. If a player objects to the HGH testing, they will definitely be viewed as suspicious.

In a way, both Mason and Cromartie are right. Mason is right in the sense that Goodell should be focusing on the big picture before the details, but Cromartie is right in the sense that anybody already following the rules should have no objection to the tests.

Madden 2012 Cover Curse

Posted: 04/06/2011 in Uncategorized

Okay, so chance are, if you are reading this blog, you are a fairly dedicated football fan. And that means you have probably heard of the Madden curse. If you haven’t, it is basically a theory that the athlete that is on the cover of Madden does poorly the next year.

The curse has been especially evident over the past 13 years. Drew Brees and Larry Fitzgerald were the only “exceptions” to the rule.  Although Brees’s stats didn’t take a major hit after appearing on the cover of the video game, he did throw a career high 22 interceptions and played almost the whole season with a medial collateral ligament sprain. What about Larry Fitz? He took even less of a hit stat-wise than Brees, but he shared the cover with Troy Polamalu, who took a MAJOR hit, missing 11 games on the season.

This year, there are eight players left in the mix for an appearance on the cover. The finalists are Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Danny Woodhead, Jamaal Charles, Peyton Hillis, Adrian Peterson, Michael Vick and Patrick Willis.

All of these players are either top fantasy stars (Brees, Rodgers, Peterson, and Willis [in some formats]) or had huge stat-filled seasons (Charles, Hillis, and Vick). The only one that doesn’t fit in either of these categories is Danny Woodhead.

Maybe, the people who are deciding who goes on the cover decided to give fantasy owners a break and use someone who wouldn’t have as much of a drop. As a yearly fantasy owner, I would appreciate this greatly. However, I don’t think that is the truth. I can’t tell you why they chose who they did to be in the finals, but I can tell you that whoever they chose, beware the curse.

Twitter Warfare

Posted: 03/29/2011 in Uncategorized

Over the past few years, NFL athletes have branched out in to the “wonderful” world of social media, specifically Twitter.

The players can vent on completely unrelated topics, like Chad Ochocinco did when he said…

He has a way with words doesn’t he? As you can see, Twitter can give the players a pretty bad reputation. However, it can also be used as a helpful tool, instead of a weapon. For example, some players will tweet about world affairs, team events, or NFL news.

And then there are the deep tweets that are cheesier than Lambeau Field on game day.

In conclusion, Twitter can be used as a sword or a shield. If the players continue to use it as a weapon, it will only intensify and grow worse over time. However, Twitter could be used as a positive influence, and a way for players to share their personal experiences, team news, and opinions about ON-TOPIC situations.

Proposed Rule Changes

Posted: 03/17/2011 in NFL News

The NFL’s executive vice president of operations, Ray Anderson and the president of the competition committee, Rich McKay told the press about their proposals for rule changes on Wednesday.

The main focus of their proposals was player safety. This includes the rampant illegal hits in addition to some proposed changes in the kickoff game.

Anderson promised the media that repeat offenders of the illegal hits that were so widespread in the 2010 season would be suspended, not just fined.

Anderson and McKay decided against reseeding and the “Calvin Johnson Rule”. In my opinion, this is a good thing because reseeding is pointless.

The point of  rule changes is to improve competition and make players safer. Reseeding has no effect on safety, and it would actually DECREASE competition. If the Seattle Seahawks had to play the Saints in Now Orleans, I believe the Saints would have won, hands down. Therefore, reseeding would tilt the playoff games towards the better teams, and decrease competition.

The “Calvin Johnson Rule” would be almost impossible to enforce. Who is to say that Johnson didn’t actually let it go accidentally? It would be the player’s word against the ref’s word, and that situation will rarely produce a winner.

When McKay surveyed the coaches, he found that some of them would like to eliminate kickoffs. This seems a bit drastic, and would put a lot of people out of a job. However, changes are being made to the kickoff game.

The proposal was to move the kickoff from the 30-yard line, where it is now, to the 35-yard line, and all members of the kicking team must start between the 30 and 35 yard lines, to limit running starts. Touchbacks would start at the 25, instead of the 20 like they do now. With limited running starts, and a greater inclination to take a knee, injuries would (hopefully) be decreased significantly.

The other proposed change was a mandatory replay proposal. This means that every scoring play would be reviewed, even the obvious ones. This would make the game too slow, put something needs to be done so that the border-line scoring plays can be reviewed, not just two of them. Maybe, we could give the coaches a different colored flag to throw that would do the same thing as a challenge flag, except it has unlimited uses and can only be used on scoring plays. I think most coaches would have the common sense not to challenge a field goal or an obvious score, so the game wouldn’t be slowed down too much, but scoring plays could still be challenged.

I think, overall, Anderson and McKay did an awesome job, and I think that if these proposals are made, the game will be improved by a lot.