Relationships

Here’s the one political thing I will say in this blog. As much as we say we do, we do not want a President that we can relate to. Other than the dozens of generic topics chambered in the frontal lobe of a candidate, who always has something to say, a theoretical conversation would be boring and short. I’m OK with that.

Somehow we’re still set up to believe that we can relate to professional athletes. If the player we most admire is a “good guy,” it’s easier to root for him/her. Players like Plaxico Burress and Brian Urlacher, who have recently received eight-figure signing bonuses, want another one. Guess what, I can’t relate to that. I can’t relate to seeing an upcoming salary of 3.5 million and thinking “I am underpaid.” I do not understand how a guy like Javon Walker, who just received another eight-figure signing bonus, would put himself in a situation where he could get robbed, mugged, and almost killed in Vegas this week.

Signing bonuses make sense in the NFL because it benefits both sides. The player gets guaranteed money, and the team gets to prorate that money over time. The downside is when that bonus lowers the annual salary, making a player feel underpaid toward the end of the deal. $10 million seems like a lot of money to blow, but just ask Evander Holyfield how easy it is to spend a fortune ten times that much. The signing bonus, and the headlines that accompany them, can be the issue. Albert Haynesworth is upset that the Titans will only pay him $8+ million as the Franchise Player, because a long-term deal would mean that he’s going to see at least twice that much up front. He should be expected to receive pay on par with the top defensive tackles in the NFL because that’s what he is, at least conveniently in time for his rookie contract to run out. He shouldn’t get huffy when the Titans decide to offer him a deal that’s best in the short term.

Last week, Tiger Woods was interviewed, and the reporter asked him about the Stanley Cup Finals. He asked “people still watch hockey?” Although I enjoyed him displaying a personality, which is rare, I also thought “F him.” I’d rather watch a high-school pick-up hockey game than any golf tournament, unless I wanted to take a nap. Frankly, golf is a hindrance to my napping since the noise is only sporadic. I can sleep just fine to a football game. Don’t make any noise on his backswing, he might get distracted. F that. No one tells a hostile crowd to shut up as Tom Brady’s throwing a pass one second before a 300-pound defensive tackle comes in at his knees. If your sport has a Senior tour, it’s not a sport.

I’ve noticed one thing while beginning to do my pre-season fantasy football rankings. I am like most football fans in that I was totally enamored by the rookie Vince Young and completely turned off by the sophomore version. When it comes to projections, it seems like people are forgetting that Young injured his quad in week six. The projections for his rushing totals seem to be low. Now I’m thinking that he might be a value in redrafts. When Steve McNair was 24, he threw for 14 touchdowns and added 8 on the ground. That’s what I think people can expect from Young this year. Just don’t quote me on that.

An NFL player gets a QB rating of 38.6 when he throws one incomplete pass. Young did have three games last year in which his QB rating was lower than 38.6. The Titans won two of those games, and in the third they lost a 17-0 fourth-quarter lead. Chris Chambers so didn’t catch that fourth-down pass. It’s time to get over 2007.

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