Peter King will answer your questions each week in Monday Morning Quarterback: Tuesday Edition.
I'm really ready for some football. Not saying I don't love vacation, but it feels like about 16 months since the Steelers beat Seattle in the Super Bowl. (And be careful saying that to Seahawks fans, because they still don't believe they lost the game.)
So today I'll drive 79 miles west to Eagles camp in Bethlehem, Pa., on the hilly campus of Lehigh University. That starts it. A couple of days at the Iggles, then a day home, then on to Orlando for the start of Bucs camp on Friday. A month and 22 team visits later, I hope to be educated enough to tell you who to take in your fantasy drafts. If you're lucky, I won't advise you to bypass Favre for Wuerffel again.
I'm the same as you this time of year. I've got questions. Will the Steelers repeat? Will Reggie Bush sign in time to play one down in training camp? Will enough Bengals stay out of jail so Cincinnati can field a team?
But mostly, this time of year I get caught up in the renewal of it all. When I meet fans of different teams, it impresses me how excited they are. A guy at a softball game a couple of weeks ago said to me, "Big Vikings fan. We winning the division this year?'' In Manhattan last week a guy at a crosswalk said he was a Raiders fan and thought they were the big sleepers and loved the acquisition of Aaron Brooks. Heasked what I thought.
"You never know,'' I said, because you really don't. "Aaron Brooks makes an awful lot of mistakes. But that's what's great about this time of year. Everyone has hope.''
The Raiders are a great example of that. I think it's lunacy for any team to be excited about Brooks lining up under center. He's the classic guy who looks good in practice, runs fast and has a good arm but always does enough to lose you the game. But in the offseason I kept hearing that RandyMoss and others believe that Brooks is a big improvement over Kerry Collins and how the Raiders finally have a mobile guy with a big arm who can fully capitalize on the greatness of Moss.
Crazy logic, if you ask me. But that's what's great about July. Everyone has hope. And who am I to pop bubbles? I mean, who liked Atlanta in July 1998, the Rams in July 1999, the Ravens in July 2000, the Pats in July 2001 or Carolina in July 2003? No one that I recall.
I enter these six weeks of undue optimism thinking of two upstarts: Miami and Detroit. The Dolphins aren't a stretch; they finished strong last year, winning their final six, and they'll have a much better quarterback situation with Daunte Culpepper in the fold.