MMQB Mail (cont.)
Now onto your e-mail. First from a friend who just e-mailed me about the Jets' personal seat license plan, which was announced in New York today.
THE GIANTS HAVE SOME 'SPLAININ' TO DO. From Tim, of Verona, N.J.: "As you know, there are four upper-deck [Giants] tickets in my family. Why are the Jets charging zero for the PSLs in the upper deck and the Giants charging $1,000 per ticket?''
Fairly simple, Tim. I know you and your brethren upstairs are not happy about paying $1,000 per ticket as a personal seat license. But paying that $4,000 gives you the right in perpetuity to do whatever you want with those tickets. As of now, if you didn't want the tickets some year, you would have to return the tickets to the Giants. You wouldn't own them. But if you pay the four grand, you'd be able to sell the four seats to a friend or business associate or a ticket broker -- and probably more than recoup the $4,000 you paid for the PSL to begin with.
Bravo to the Jets for not making the upper deck tix PSL-eligible, but if it were me, I'd rather find the $4,000 and own those four seats until such time as I wanted to dispose of them whatever way I saw fit.
YOU COULD SAY THE SAME THING ABOUT DAUNTE CULPEPPER. From Matt, of Jacksonville: "Why is Shaun Alexander still unemployed? Do teams really think he's spent or is he waiting for a team to develop injury problems at running back? It feels like he just dropped off the planet.''
There was an item about Daunte Culpepper today on profootballtalk.com that mirrors the Alexander situation. It's amazing Culpepper doesn't have a job in the NFL when there's such a dearth of good backup quarterbacks. Why he's not in New Orleans, Atlanta, Carolina, Chicago, Detroit or Kansas City (or a few other places) is interesting to me. PFT wonders whether Culpepper is being blackballed; I don't think it's that, but rather a situation where some teams are afraid of him coming in and wanting so badly to be a starter that he wouldn't accept role behind a player (Brodie Croyle, Kyle Orton) he'd consider clearly inferior.
Re: Alexander, I wonder the same thing, except for this: He's not a good blocker, receiver or special-teams player. So unless you bring him in as a starting back, what exactly is he? For instance, you might look at the Giants and say he'd be a good fit behind Brandon Jacobs, or even as a co-starter with Jacobs. But then you see the versatility of Derrick Ward, and you see the lightning-quickness and return ability of Ahmad Bradshaw, and you say: What exactly would Alexander do here.
INJURY CITY. From Rob Munn, of San Diego: "On the issue of preseason injuries, how is it that some teams seem to get bitten harder by the injury bug than others? Harder practices? Lighter practices? Too little conditioning? Too much conditioning? What do NFL people think about it? I realize the sort of leg injuries that occur in pileups are just bad luck (being rolled up on from behind, for instance), but it just seems like some teams have tougher luck than others.
"It would be a very interesting project to compile stats on preseason injuries tied to who the coaches were, what kind of offseason conditioning programs were in place, the weather conditions at camp and in the games where injuries occurred, and anything else that might help uncover injury risks. Do you know if the NFL has anything like that? If not, they should consider making the investment. If not the NFL, maybe the NFLPA- it's their health, after all.''
The NFL keeps tabs on injuries, and how they occur, with special attention paid to head injuries and concussions. Interesting. I was talking to Matt Hasselbeck about this over the weekend, and he said he thinks coaches are coaching differently with the 80-man roster, and just because of the recent history of injuries with so many players on their rosters. "Peyton and Tom haven't even played in the preseason,'' he said of Manning and Brady, "and here, they're being very cautious with my back. Mike [Holmgren] is never very sympathetic to me, but this summer he's like, 'Are you OK?' He's all concerned. Maybe it's because it's a back injury. But it is different.''
I'll tell you this much, Rob: We're going to see a change in how owners view the preseason. And soon. They're getting killed, and rightfully so, over how bush-league the exhibition games are now, and they don't like all the negative pub.
SORRY, JEFF. BUT NOT UNLESS HE HAS THREE MORE INTERGALACTIC YEARS. From Jeff, of Glendale, Calif.: "When Kurt Warner retires, do you think he will have a chance at making the Hall of Fame? Though he may not have the longevity that other quarterbacks will have (e.g., Manning, Farve, Brady), he has won one Super Bowl, played in another and won 2 MVPs.''
Good points, but here is the overriding negative: In his 10 NFL seasons in uniform, Warner has started, in order, zero, 16, 11, 16, six, one, nine, 10, five and 11 games. He's played two full seasons and most of three others. Just not enough to be in the Hall. Now, let's say he wins another MVP, and plays three more tip years. Then he at least merits discussion.
OKAY, KING. WHAT'S WITH THE POPCORN-EATING WITH JERRY JONES? From Tom Rice, of San Antonio: "Do you get residuals every time 'Hard Knocks' is played on HBO? It cracks me up every time to see you eating popcorn with Jerry Jones.''
Here's the deal. You go into Cowboys training camp this year, and you're eligible to be a TV star. The HBO cameras (actually NFL Films cameras) are omnipresent, even when you can't see them. I had no idea when I was in Jones' office that I'd be on the show, although I know from experience -- Hard Knocks in Baltimore a few years ago, when I saw the hidden camera in Brian Billick's office -- that the camera was somewhere. The only way a show like that can work is if they have about 100 times as much footage as they need, because so much of what they get is either colosally boring or guys acting for the camera. And evidently someone thought Jerry and I was worthy. But no, I get nothing -- other than a bunch of people in the past few days saying, "Hey, what's with you eating popcorn with Jerry Jones?''
NOW I NEED TO SEE IT. From Bill Sweeney, of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisc.: "Saw your two-minute cameo the other night on Hard Knocks eating popcorn with Jerry. About as real as I've ever seen Jerry.''
I've got to see that. I haven't yet. But I've heard so much about it that now I'm going to have to see the rerun here, maybe tonight if it's on.