Monday Bloody Monday

Former NFL Coaches: Crennel (Chiefs), Reid (Eagles), Shurmur (Browns)

Former NFL Coaches: Crennel (Chiefs), Reid (Eagles), Shurmur (Browns)

We knew it was coming. We knew heads would roll. But who knew Black Monday would be this bloody?

By New Year’s Eve day, seven NFL head coaches and five general managers were unemployed. Dozens of coordinators and assistants followed. A post-regular-season house cleaning like we’ve never seen. More head coaches lost their jobs Monday than in the previous three seasons combined.

Some teams chose to start over completely, removing both the general manager and head coach. The Arizona Cardinals did so with Coach Ken Whisenhunt and General Manager Rod Graves. The Cleveland Browns with Coach Pat Shurmur and Manager Tom Heckert. And the Chargers followed suit with Coach Norv Turner and Manager A.J. Smith.

New Jacksonville Jaguars Owner Shad Khan chose to fire General Manager Gene Smith. And the New York Jets turned General Manager Mike Tannenbaum loose after a season that proved to be interesting, yet disappointing. No word yet on Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan’s future. In fact, we’re still waiting for his end of the season press conference.

Four other teams chose to part ways with their coaches: The Buffalo Bills with Chan Gailey, the Kansas City Chiefs with Romeo Crennel, the Eagles with Andy Reid, and the only real surprise…the Chicago Bears with Lovie Smith.

Smith’s firing created a backlash in the Bears locker room as well as the national sports media. Because…well, everybody loves Lovie. Both Tony Dungy (a close friend of Smith’s) and former Bears Coach Mike Ditka referred to the decision as “ridiculous.” Bears star Wide Receiver Devin Hester is reportedly so distraught by the news that he is pondering retirement.

One person who won’t be retiring…Lovie Smith. He is a hot commodity in the now busy market for NFL head coach shopping season.

So, what happens now? Does a game of musical coaches ensue…cut your guy and pick up the one to your right? It’s already started, with Andy Reid reportedly interviewing with the Chiefs today and Cardinals tomorrow.

And the bloodshed may not be over.

In the meantime, we’re still waiting…

Rex?

XO

 

Get off your soap box and go back to the press box!

NBC Sunday Night Football Host Bob Costas

It was an emotional week in the National Football League. The horrific tragedy in Kansas City rocked the Chiefs, their fans, and the entire nation. You can’t make sense of the senseless, yet that’s exactly what many attempted to do during the hours and days that followed the Jovan Belcher story. I just didn’t expect Bob Costas to be one of them.

Let me start by saying I consider myself a Bob Costas fan. Like Costas, I went to Syracuse and studied broadcast journalism. Unlike Costas, I did not drop out. Boom! I worked in the news business. He works in sports news. So, we’re peers…sort of.

Which made it all the more shocking to me when, during halftime on Sunday Night Football, Costas used his position as an NBC host to pontificate on gun control in the wake of the Belcher murder-suicide. My first reaction was to pick up my phone and tweet, “What the hell is Costas doing?” I decided instead to give him a chance, to see if he was going somewhere that made sense. The only sense I could make of it, was that Costas used the emotion tied to Belcher’s acts to commit professional suicide himself. And it left me asking the same question. Why?

I would rather watch a marching band than listen to Bob Costas (or anyone else for that matter) politicize a tragedy and voice opinion merely because they are in a position to do so. One of the reasons Americans have become so angry and polarized is that they are tired of having opinions heaped upon them unsolicited. Like when my sister and her sister-in-law went to the Madonna concert and were forced to listen to her unpaid election advertisement…while paying $300 a seat.

Whether it’s self importance, self assertiveness, or self aggrandizement, people in the public eye (and ear) need to listen up. In this season of giving, stop giving the public what makes you feel good and instead, try giving them what they ask you for.

In other words, do us a favor…and get off your soap box.

Now…I’ll get off mine.

XO

Coffee Cup Quarterback | Week 9: Decisions…decisions…

Happy Election Day, America!  Make sure you vote today.  Or…don’t complain about the result.

I’m sure the exit polls are already coming in.  A winner cannot be predicted in the NFL season thus far…but we’re starting to be able to project the losers.

Week nine kicked off on Thursday night with a must win game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Diego Chargers.  The Chiefs came out on the losing end of that battle 13-31, which puts them at 1-7.  I’ll just let Twitter take it from there…


Sunday night…another primetime game, another must win game.  But this time, only for one team…the Dallas Cowboys.  Tony Romo’s first pass to the end zone was a throw I could have made.  But he missed it, badly.  Amazingly, it wasn’t intercepted.  Romo leads the league with 13 interceptions this season, yet he had none against the Atlanta Falcons.  Still, the Cowboys fell 13-19.  And that makes the Falcons 8-0 and the Cowboys 3-5.

Which raises some questions…what does the future look like for the Dallas Cowboys?  For Head Coach Jason Garrett?  For Tony Romo?  And you think you have decisions to make today?  How would you like to be Cowboys Owner and General Manager Jerry Jones?  Who was, by the way…locked out of the locker room after the game.  The locker room he built and he owns.


Things are getting a little bizarro in Jerryville.  Just goes to show…you can buy a team, you can buy a stadium, you can even buy an election…but you can’t buy respect.

At least he stuck around for the end of the game.  Tennessee Titans Owner Bud Adams was reportedly so disgusted with his team’s performance against the Chicago Bears on Sunday, that he left during the third quarter and flew home.  The Titans lost to the Bears 20-51.

“In my 50 years of owning an NFL franchise, I am at a loss to recall a regular-season home game that was such a disappointment for myself and fans of the Titans.”

-Tennessee Titans Owner Bud Adams to The Tennessean

And that brings us to the Monday Night Football game of Election Eve.  And, you guessed it…a must win game between the struggling Philadelphia Eagles and the New Orleans Saints.  You know a game is boring when Michael Vick’s brother’s tweets are a highlight.


The other highlight…the halftime interviews with the presidential candidates.  For anyone…who after all the ads, debates, phone calls, and mailings…hasn’t yet made up their mind.  What I really wish Chris Berman would have asked is, “Mr. President, how would you fix the Eagles?”  They lost to the Saints 13-28.  Along with the economy, healthcare, and social security, the Philadelphia Eagles may be a problem that will take longer than four years to fix.

Whatever your team, whoever your candidate…last night and today are what America is all about.  In the end, politics may divide us, but football unites us.

So choose wisely, America. Your future depends on it.

And that goes double for the Chiefs.

XO

And a happy Election Day birthday to my sister, Jennifer!  Congratulations are also in order…as she reclaimed her spot atop the Pigskin ‘N Pearls fantasy league with her team, Don’t Play Like Shiht Zus.  She may shiht when she sees who’s right behind her though…with Doug Martin.