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A Look At A Crazy NFL Offseason

Peyton Manning Fantasy FootballAs I am getting ready for a couple of major sporting events, WrestleMania 28 in Miami, and the race known as the “Greatest Two Minutes in Sports, also known as the “Run for the Roses,” or simply known as the Kentucky Derby, I did learn a lesson about the NFL. NFL Network’s Rich Eisen is right.

There is NO offseason for the NFL. There were so many things that happened just in the past week or so: Peyton Manning finally settled on a team. Tim Tebow was traded to another team, and even had a press conference Monday. The Saints got pounded for “BountyGate” by the Commissioner. One of the best Wide Receivers the Pittsburgh Steelers ever had. retired. That is a lot of news to make in a week. Well, in this blog, I have something to say about all these news tidbits, so let’s go.

Peyton Manning’s choosing the Denver Broncos

It was pretty surreal seeing Peyton Manning holding up that God awful Orange colored Denver Jersey. It will definitely take me awhile to get used to that. Of course, former Bronco great, and now Bronco GM John Elway was gushing over Peyton, and saying how they will win Super Bowls, and how Peyton will become the best ever, etc. I had written a previous blog about Peyton Manning expressing my concerns about his continuing his career. I had those concerns then, and I still have them now. Even with all the clauses about passing physicals and such, I still think 96 million dollars is a lot of money to throw at a 36 year old QB with a bad neck who, mind you, has NOT played in a year. Vegas has the Broncos at 10/1 odds to win the Super Bowl, down from 75/1.

I think Vegas has gone insane. In 2008, even though it was not a neck, Tom Brady suffered a horrid knee injury, and when he came back in 2009, after not playing for a year, his 2009 season, despite some pretty decent stats, was up and down. He was not “Tom Brady.” It was the 2010 season when he became “Tom Brady” again. I just don’t see how a lot of the experts are so sure that Peyton Manning is going to be any different, and he is a year or so older than Brady, and Brady was 32 when he suffered his injury. It may not have been a neck, but a knee injury is a serious injury just the same. With this neck injury, one bad hit , and it is over. He is also with a totally different team, etc. I know he is “Peyton Manning,” but even he has to learn. I am just not on the Broncos to multiple Super Bowls bandwagon like some are is all.

Tim Tebow traded to the New York Jets and the Press Conference

Well, the next problem, now that Manning was on the team was what to do with Tim Tebow who lead the Broncos to the playoffs. Well, the Broncos traded him to the Jets. After a couple of screw ups on the part of the Jets concerning reading a clause in Tebow’s contract, and the failure of the Jaguars to really go after Tebow, the former Heisman winner wound up a member of the Green and White. Mr. Tebow, without any of the Jets brass, had a press conference with the New York Media. He was his charming self, and gave his usual spiel on how he was going to work hard, etc, etc. Well, my opinion of all this is pretty simple.

I don’t understand what the Jets are doing,honestly. About a week or so before all this, they are extending QB Mark Sanchez’ contract. They then signed former Lions QB Drew Stanton and told HIM, that HE would back up Sanchez, and now they bring the circus to town, named Tim Tebow. Stanton, who just signed, wanted nothing to do with this, and wanted out, and the Jets obliged. I mean, is this a way to run a team? I mean, in my opinion, with Tebow, and everything he brings, I think Sanchez is being undermined. All this helps Sanchez, how? If Sporano is going to use the Wildcat, I guess I can see that . However, when you have two QBs, you have none. Tebow also should remember he is playing for the New York City area which is a very , VERY diverse area with people of DIVERSE opinions, views, and of diverse RELIGIOUS BELIEFS. I understand his feelings and I respect his beliefs, but he has to respect OTHERS.

The Retirement of Hines Ward

Well, all things must come to an end. Sadly, Hines Ward, who played Wide Receiver for 14 years for the Pittsburgh Steelers retired. He was a hell of a player. It was always a joy seeing him catch a ball, and then ram himself into a defender. I loved it when he would get into it with defenders from rival teams, especially the Bengals, and the hated Ravens. I will never forget his laying out that poor Bengals LB Keith Rivers. I didn’t think the hit was “dirty,” but oh well.

He broke several Steeler records held by John Stallworth, and was a two time Super Bowl winner. He was the SB MVP for SB XL. He is not afraid to show emotion either which was another of his great characteristics. I will never forget his crying when the Steelers lost the 2005 AFC Championship Game to the Patriots at Heinz Field when he thought it was RB Jerome Bettis’ last game. More importantly though, I will never forget that smile after after play. He would brighten the whole field with that smile. Hopefully, he will be smiling when he wears that gold jacket in Canton as well. Thanks Hines for the memories, for putting your body on the line, for everything.

The Saints Getting Pounded for “Bounty Gate.”

WOW. That is the weird I uttered when I heard the sanctions the Saints got for what is now called “Bountygate.” The Saints’ Former, now Rams Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams got an indefinite suspension. Head Coach Sean Payton got a one year suspension. Coach Joe Vitts got a 6 game suspension, and Saints Mickey Loomis got anr 8 game suspension. The Saints were fined $500,000 and lost a 2nd round draft pick for this year and next year. That is heavy, I must say. There was a lot of reaction, both pro and con. I could not help but notice that a large majority, including the experts at ESPN, etc, thought the Saints were hit “too hard.” Lots of people were trying to excuse the Saints’ actions by saying, “…but Belichick didn’t get suspended……”

Well, here is my take on all this. The Saints were investigated for THREE YEARS over this. I mean, the NFL got tipped off, and since the 2009 season (the Saints’ Super Bowl season), the League has been looking into these charges. There were 50,000 pages or so of documents. I hardly think that just came out of the blue. I mean, yeah, the NFL is a hard hitting sport. The defender’s job is to stop the offense, and their mentality is to knock the dude out of the game. I have watched this sport for over 35 years.

Trust me. I MISS the days when you can actually HIT the QB. Guys like Night Train Lane, Mean Joe Greene, L.C Greenwood, Randy White, Lawrence Taylor, etc if they played today, they would be fined or suspended with today’s “don’t touch the QB” rules. Why do you have the “Mel Blount” rule? It is there because Mel Blount, the famed CB for the Steelers would push around and wrestle wide receivers. Now you can’t touch receivers. Trust me. I miss all that.

However, when you talk about a team that has an INSTITUTIONALIZED system of paying players EXTRA to purposely TAKE OUT players like a MOB HIT, well, that is not right, and that has to be heavily punished. People complain how “Spygate changes the complexion of a game.” Oh,really?? Let’s say, the Saints took out Brett Farve in the second play of the game in that NFC Championship game, and of course, got their Bounty payments. You mean to tell me that from the third play of the game on, with the Saints playing against the BACKUP, the complexion of the game is NOT CHANGED??? Really? It sure as hell would make the game easier for the Saints to win, in my estimation. Unless that backup is a young Kurt Warner, or a young Tom Brady, the Saints will have an easier time.

Williams deserved to be pounded because on every team he was on he pulled this crap. In my opinion, he should be banned for life. Sean Payton tried to cover it up. He knew about it. He is the head coach. I always kind of sensed something very “jerky” about him in interviews and such. Payton had a responsibility to make sure nothing was going on that was illegal. Loomis should be suspended because he lied to his boss, the Owner.

Finally, I wish people would stop using “Spygate” as an excuse for what the Saints did. The Pats did what they did, and got punished, and took their punishment (even though some analysts still won’t shut up about it). The Saints did what they did, and should just take responsibility for their disobedience of the NFL.

Terri Bey currently blogs for about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for Terri can be found here at Facebook- and at Twitter-

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an M.B.A. from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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