The Carolina Panthers cut the face of the franchise, Steve Smith, and let the only other three wide receivers on the roster that caught a pass last season leave as free agents. Tight end Greg Olsen is the only proven receiver returning from last season’s squad. Olsen should be Cam Newton’s favorite target this season.
So it is with my jaded view of the world that I address the Ben Roethlisberger – Emmanuel Sanders feud. Sanders said that his new quarterback, Peyton Manning, is a much better leader than his old quarterback, Big Ben. And thus the verbal jousting began, feathers flexed, talons out.
With injuries piling up and players not performing up to par, there are a number of teams making moves and rotating big names so that all roster spots can be taken full advantage of as the playoffs approach.
But no matter how black or gold my allegiance, no matter how nostalgic I feel about them. and no matter how deep the Rooney roots run in NFL history, there’s no excuse for their head coach’s conduct on Thanksgiving.
There are a lot of big storylines going on around the NFL right now and they span more than just the playoff race. Actually, the Packers are hoping for a big return soon just so they can get into the playoffs, but other stories have to deal with an interfering coach and an early day in London for next season.
Lots of big-time stories are going around as the 2013 NFL year is entering the final month of the regular season, and there is a lot more going on than just the playoff races. Those things include a Dolphin being done, a coach getting a hefty fine, and a Seahawk having a short return.
The endless genius of the NFL can’t be completely quantified. But part of pro football’s popularity is burning its image in our culture and our consciousness. While baseball and basketball have their July 4 and Christmas brands, they are afterthoughts, or leftovers, compared to the NFL’s hallmark roll call.
There’s a baleful buzz around Big Ben and my beloved black & gold these days. Reports say that the mountainous QB is now a mutinous QB, demanding he be traded at the end of this season.
Problems abound in the NFL sometimes, and it takes a lot the backing and support from your teammates, coaches, ownership and more to keep you a part of a franchise. Those problems can be injuries, losing streaks and even just rumors.
Now, one major thread in that curtain is gone. L.C. Greenwood, he of the height and heft and six Pro Bowls and four rings, as central to the dynasty as anyone not named Joe Greene or Jack Lambert, died of natural causes.