Snap Judgments (cont.)
Not only was Tom Brady a lot more of a no-show at the Patriots' offseason workout program than he has been in the past -- opting to spend more time with his baby son, John, and that supermodel girlfriend of his -- he also made it clear this week that his days of practicing more than once daily during training camp are over.
"I don't think the goal this year is to go out and see how sore my arm can get,'' Brady said. "Two practices a day is good for arm soreness. That's what it's good for. Some guys can do it. I can't.''
I'm making an early call here, given that it's late July, but second-year Bills middle linebacker Paul Posluszny is headed for a breakthrough season. The 2007 second-round pick had his rookie season ended almost before it began, thanks to a first-half broken forearm suffered in Week 3 at New England.
Posluszny has looked bigger, stronger and very hungry to make a second-year impact at Bills camp, and only another bad break on the injury front can keep him from being an emerging star in the league.
The Giants would likely face an ugly fan revolt if they didn't make room for him, but some believe Super Bowl hero David Tyree could face a very tough battle to make New York's receiving depth chart. The Giants are going to keep Plaxico Burress, Amani Toomer, Steve Smith and rookie third-round pick Mario Manningham. That could pit Tyree against the likes of 2006 second-round pick Sinorice Moss, Domenik Hixon and the wonderfully named Craphonso Thorpe for the last one or two receiving slots.
"We are stacked,'' Tyree said Friday. "We are definitely stacked. We're loaded at receiver. What do you want me to say? You all put me on the bubble, not me. You've always had me there. But I've always had confidence that I belonged.''
The Giants could always carry Tyree as a special teams performer, which is his most significant role. But then again, the offseason knee surgery that he underwent might decide his roster fate. Tyree was placed on New York's PUP list to start camp and he says he's uncertain as to when he'll be able to return to the field.
What's it like for Dom Capers, a two-time head coach and three-time coordinator in the NFL, to go back to coaching a position? Capers is the Patriots new special assistant/secondary coach.
"One of the things about it, when you've been a head coach for nine years, you know what you look for in assistant coaches,'' Capers said Friday afternoon, between first-day practices at New England's Gillette Stadium. "I think it helps you be a better assistant coach, because you want to be that guy you were looking for.''
Capers' NFL coaching career began in 1986 in New Orleans, and in order, he's been a position coach (Saints secondary), a defensive coordinator (Steelers), a head coach (Panthers), a defensive coordinator (Jacksonville), a head coach (Texans), a defensive coordinator (Miami), and now a position coach again.
"I've been through the whole gamut,'' said Capers, who led expansion teams in both Carolina and Houston. "To me, if it's a situation you know you'll feel good about and you know who you're working for, the challenge is to find out what my role is and then do a heck of a job of trying to contribute to the big picture. I don't have a problem with that. If you do a great job of what you're doing, there's always going to be something else.''
This just in: It's July 27, and the Bills are officially done with a two-a-day practices in training camp. That's got to be the earliest cessation of that training-camp staple in NFL history. Buffalo head coach Dick Jauron only scheduled two days of two-a-days, and they fell on Friday and Saturday, the Bills' first two days of camp.
From here on out, Buffalo will practice just once daily in a full-scale manner, although the Bills will fairly often conduct a second, walk-through practice some of those days. In today's NFL, with its long offseason workout programs in place, making sure you're healthy and not ruining your team's chances in training camp has become a coach's more important goal.
A quick note to all those readers who wrote in to correctly point out that the 2007 Redskins had 33 sacks as a team, rather than the total of 19 than I wrote in a Monday story about the team's Jason Taylor trade and its need to keep pace with the pass rushes of its NFC East foes. I was mistaken, but with a caveat. I got my information from the NFL's newly issued Record and Fact Book, which come to find out has erroneously printed the Redskins' 2006 sack statistics on the page that featured Washington's 2007 team statistics.
Oops. Be it 33 or 19 sacks in 2007, my thesis remains the same. The Redskins pass rush needed Taylor in order to keep up with the (Jerry) Jones' in their division. Not to mention the Giants and Eagles, too.