When you looked to the heavens this past weekend while giving thanks for the season's first full slate of football games, you didn't see any puffy wisps of cloud spelling out college scores or NFL insider info. We mention this simply to illustrate that skywriting just might be the only type of coverage that SI won't offer this season.
In our 46th year of covering autumn's game, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED will provide its most comprehensive look yet at the ever-burgeoning world of football. You will be, as always, in good hands; the same writers you've trusted for looks inside the huddle and over the coach's shoulder will also serve as your television sages and Internet guides.
In the case of SI senior writer Peter King, this will involve doing triple duty. In addition to filing his weekly INSIDE THE NFL column, King will return to the airwaves on CNN's NFL Preview (an hourlong show airing on Sundays at 10 a.m. ET) and to cyberspace with his CNNSI.com column, Monday Morning Quarterback, which, among other things, will feature his "Ten Things I Think I Think This Week." Given a standard King workday—a 7:15 a.m. interview with Oakland Raiders coach Jon Gruden, followed by a dip into his Web-site mailbag at 8:45, followed by a flurry of phone calls lasting well past noon, followed by an hour-long Internet chat at 2 p.m., followed by a quick stop at his daughter Laura's field hockey game, followed by a taping of his appearance on that night's Charlie Rose show—10 things will have to suffice. " CNN and the Web site give SI more outlets for the information our readers want," says King. "I might make 100 calls in a week. Now I get to use a lot more of the stuff I uncover."
Not that such added duties will diminish our efforts inside these pages, as evidenced by this week's menu. Sample Michael Silver's look at Jacksonville Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin, John Ed Bradley's piece on Indianapolis Colts rookie running back Edgerrin James and Jack McCallum's story on the rematch of last season's NFC Championship Game between the Minnesota Vikings and the Atlanta Falcons. On the college scene, partake of the feature on Tennessee running back Jamal Lewis by Tim Layden, who doubles as a CNN college football insider (11:30 a.m. Saturdays). Or you can turn to the INSIDE columns, in which Ivan Maisel blankets the college game the same way King does the pros. If you have a taste for prognostication, NFL guru Paul Zimmerman's picks are SI's last word on the coming week's games.
Each week on the Web site, Dr. Z will rank NFL teams from 1 to 31, weigh in on a hot topic and respond to readers' questions. The Web site will combine the entertaining (a weekly Flem File from staff writer David Fleming) with the informative (interactive depth charts, a weekly "Heisman Watch" ranking).
Still looking for more? If yours is among the 15 million households that gets CNN/SI, our all-sports cable channel, you can see weekly reports from Fleming and Maisel. "The Information Age changes our jobs yearly," says King, "and this expanded coverage allows us to keep pace."