Cornering the Market
The subject of race is a tired one for Giants cornerback Jason Sehorn, the only white starting cornerback in the league. "I wear sleeves and gloves and high socks anyway," he says, "so no one can really tell what color I am. I realize that of the 60 starting corners in the NFL, 59 are black. A white corner's a novel thing, but I just want to be recognized for playing."
Sehorn is getting plenty of recognition these days because he's competing on a level with the game's best corners. His performance in a Nov. 16 win over the Cardinals—10 tackles, one interception, one-half sack, four passes deflected, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one stoning of fullback Larry Centers for a four-yard loss on a run blitz—was a memorable one.
What makes the 210-pound Sehorn special is his 4.4 speed in the 40 and the fact that he hits like a strong safety. A 1994 second-round pick out of Southern Cat, Sehorn should compete with NFL interceptions co-leader Ryan McNeil of the Rams for a reserve spot on the NFC's Pro Bowl squad behind Deion Sanders and Aeneas Williams.
How to Curb the Roughing
In the preseason and the first 12 weeks of the regular season, 26 fines were assessed for late hits on the quarterback; there were 19 all of last year. But the fines have been meager, typically $7,500, and no suspensions have been handed down. A plan hatched by New York Times columnist Dave Anderson is worth the NFL's consideration. Defenders would accumulate points—two for a hit that draws a fine, one for unnecessary roughness—and when a player's total reached five, he would be suspended for one game.
Naturally the defensive players hate the idea. "If you have four points, and you know you'll miss a game if you get another, it's going to affect your play," says Cardinals linebacker Eric Hill. "Say you had three guys on a team who had four points. All of a sudden, they're going to have to play a game walking on eggshells."
Adds former defensive end Sean Jones, who played 13 years with three teams before retiring after last season, "Football's too fast a game. In basketball you can sec Dennis Rodman kicking the photographer. In baseball you can see Roberto Alomar spitting at the ump. In football so many hits happen so fast it's not [always clear] if it's late."
The plan's not perfect, but the league's competition committee should consider some kind of proposal that would curtail the infractions. You think a $2 million-a-year pass rusher wouldn't pay more attention to the rules if he knew he might miss a week—and a $125,000 paycheck?
End of the Line for Humphries?