Monday Morning QB (cont.)
Posted: Monday December 10, 2007 3:32AM; Updated: Monday December 10, 2007 2:31PM
Ten Things I Think I Think
1. I think these are my quick-hit thoughts of Week 14:
a. I'm impressed with Brian Billick's post-Monday night meltdown mea culpa.
b. It's just time to go, Rex Grossman. And understand that scores of really good players had to go to a second or third team before finding NFL success. The worst thing for both sides would be for Grossman to even talk to the Bears in free agency. He needs a fresh start, as do the Bears.
c. Whatever happened to Matt Leinart? Has he been kidnapped?
d. Stop showing stonefaced coaches all the time, NFL Network. How many times can we look at Lovie Smith, expressionless, for five seconds, without throwing the remote at the TV?
e. I have no fear about Ryan Grant's ability to give me 120 yards in a postseason game. By the way, number 25 turned 25 Sunday. Nice birthday present, the 156-yard game to beat Al Davis' team.
f. How, exactly, will NFL Films put a highlight film together for the Miami Dolphins?
g. I've never seen a colder shoulder than the one LaDainian Tomlinson showed Philip Rivers as the latter was stinking up the joint in Nashville on Sunday.
h. You are the luckiest man on the face of the earth this morning, Brandon Jacobs. Plaxico Burress and the officials bailed you out in a big way Sunday.
i. Adrian Peterson rushed 14 times for three yards at San Francisco, and the Vikes won by 20 points. Yes, the tide is turning for the Vikes all right.
j. I'm no ratings maven, but I'll bet a dime that a Dallas-New England or Green Bay-New England Super Bowl would draw the biggest audience in American television history.
k. Why do I think the Vikings might have something to say about that?
2. I think it's all well and good for Eagles president Joe Banner to say, as he did the other day, that he "can't envision a scenario'' in which Donovan McNabb is not the Eagles' quarterback in 2008. It's a fine thing to support your starting quarterback and to try to put out all the fires raging in Philadelphia in the media and the public about McNabb's future. But if that's the way Banner's really thinking, he's Nero, and Rittenhouse Square is on fire.
I'm not saying McNabb can't save his job by going 3-0 down the stretch and playing great football, and I'm not saying the die is cast and he's definitely in his last month as the Eagles' quarterback. But let's be realistic. He's not the pal he once was with Andy Reid (for a lot of reasons), and that goes both ways. You can't win in the NFL when the house is divided, and you just get the feeling this house is falling apart and can't be rebuilt.
McNabb will turn 32 next November, and even though a quarterback is always healthier the second year after a torn ACL, the Eagles can't take that to the bank with his injury history. In the second half of the last six seasons, including this one, he's missed six, zero, zero, seven, seven and two regular/postseason games due to injury. That's an average of four games missed per second half of the last six seasons. Time to move on.
The Bears, if they're smart, will ante up their fairly high second-round pick -- which should be about the 45th pick overall -- and the Eagles should seriously consider taking it, then starting over under center.
One final McNabb note: Paul Domowitch of the Philadelphia Daily News is one of the most fair-minded and even-handed NFL writers in the business. The other day, he noted how rabbit-earish he's found McNabb and wrote: "For a guy who says he doesn't waste energy worrying about what people think of him, it seems as if he does nothing but worry about it. Buy a pair of freaking earplugs and stop reading the paper, will ya, fella.''
3. I think the NFL found two widely diverging explanations for official Phil McKinnely's "boy'' comment to Samari Rolle during the conflagration in Baltimore last Monday night. Rolle told league disciplinary VP Ray Anderson that McKinnely used the word in a denigrating way late in the game. But McKinnely, according to a league source, told the argumentative Rolle to "stop acting like a boy'' and be an adult.
Rather than keeping the dispute alive, the league did two things last Friday: It elected not to discipline or fine Rolle or his teammates for their onfield abuse of the officiating crew, and it sent a warning letter out to all officiating crews advising them to walk away from disputes in the future. And Anderson reminded the Ravens players to walk away from arguments before they escalate. I'm told the league believes McKinnely's side of the story.
4. I think one of the most interesting decisions of the offseason will be whether the Colts use their franchise tag on either of two vital players whose contracts are schedule to expire -- tight end Dallas Clark and safety Bob Sanders. At least one of those guys is going to be a free agent, and whoever it is will hit paydirt. If it's Sanders, it'll take a leap of faith because of all his time missed due to injury. Somehow, I can't see Indy GM Bill Polian allowing Sanders to go.
5. I think if you ever question the brutality of this game, and wonder if people like Mike Ditka, Kyle Turley and Daryl Johnston are doing the right thing in campaigning for better medical care and benefits for retirees, consider this headline you will never see on NFL.com: John Elway just had a knee replaced. At age 47.
6. I think, if I'm the Patriots, I'm dealing the pick I got from San Francisco, the one that might be the second overall pick in the draft. I'm resisting all temptation to choose Darren McFadden, because I know I can trade down and get a good back down the line. The league's full of them -- at far more manageable money than the $28 million guaranteed you'd probably have to commit to a McFadden if he's picked that high.