Posted: Monday March 6, 2006 9:45AM; Updated: Monday March 6, 2006 11:58AM
Ten Things I Think I Think
1. I think you'll all be happy to know I heard from Army First Sgt. Mike McGuire on Sunday morning. Everywhere I go, people ask: "Hey, how's the soldier doing? Love your reports on the soldier." Stuff like that. And so it was good to hear from Mike, on the front lines of seeking out explosive devices in Iraq with his platoon. Here's what he said:
"Hello Peter, Been a while, huh? Been very busy doing TCP's (Traffic Control Points) and Route Clearance with the Infantry. Everyone is doing fine. Got some really good pics to show you. If you send me an address (which I did) to send them, I have them on disc for you. My guys made a slide show to music for you to see us in action.
"Don't have a lot of time to write because I got a chat date with my wife. We have not chatted on the net for a very long time, so I apologize for the short letter.
"I asked my buddy how would be the best way to describe Iraq to you and he said, 'It's like a bad Dr. Seuss dream.' I agree. Take care, Mike.''
I wrote back, asking if he was safe (dumb question) and telling him how much all of you have responded positively to his story. Keep the notes coming and I'll keep passing along your wishes.
2. I think just for the sake of insuring trust in the salary cap from some skeptical front offices, the league needs to make sure LaVar Arrington is really going to forego the $4 million in guaranteed money to get his freedom now. Not saying it didn't happen, but I am saying with all the money the Redskins have to spare and how convenient it was that the team could find this money after months of hand-wringing over the Arrington deal, the league needs to double check that the accounting of this is clean.
Assuming Arrington did give the money back, it's a smart move on his part to get his freedom now instead of in June or July. And I think it's a good example of cutting one's losses. The Redskins and Arrington were never going to be happy together, even though he loves the city and the people there.
3. I think a week from today, Drew Brees has a very good chance to be a Dolphin. It's a perfect fit, particularly if Nick Saban is sure Brees can throw the ball in training camp after having undergone surgery on his labrum. Remember, torn labrums are repaired all the time. The Dolphins will be doing handsprings if they're lucky enough to work out a deal for Brees.
4. I think I haven't changed my mind about the Chargers and Brees. Unless his arm is falling off and can't be surgically re-attached, you just don't let a top-tier quarterback go at age 27. We are watching insanity before our very eyes. Someone stop the Chargers before they go through with this. Please.
5. I think no matter what Chad Pennington and the Jets say about the restructuring and how they're going to be one big happy family, they aren't kidding anyone? The Jets tried hard to get Pennington to take an $8 million pay cut and showed no faith that his twice-surgically repaired shoulder will be fine. In the end, he got the money up to $3 million in guaranteed 2006 salary, with $6 million in incentives. But the Jets still hope to get a quarterback with the fourth pick of the draft (they've got Jay Cutler written all over them, if he makes it to four, or if they can move up to two with John Abraham as bait). So whatever happens, look for this to be Pennington's last year with the Jets.