- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
The thing about Jerry Glanville is that he isn't one to hold a grudge for long. "Only till I die," he once said. That's why, ever since the 1990 NFL schedule came out way back when, one game on opening weekend stuck out like Miss Illinois: the Houston Oilers at the Atlanta Falcons. The game would be not only the Harley-ridin', reporter-fightin', Elvis-sightin' Glanville's debut with the Falcons, but also a chance for the man in black to polish his dislike for the folks who used to sign his W-2s, the Oilers, whom he coached from 1986 through last season.
Now, Glanville is a scalawag and a raconteur and a pretty fair coach and a man who has too much fun and laughs too loud for some people. Consequently, he made more enemies in Houston than Texaco has maps. He eventually a) quit, b) was fired or c) jumped with only a few flame marks on his pant cuffs. How many people in Houston would love to see him fall flat on his Stetson in Atlanta? "Your story ain't big enough to fit all the names," he said before Sunday's game.
O.K., so maybe just the short list:
•The Oilers' 70-year-old general manager, Mike Holovak. Glanville didn't like the way Holovak acquired players, thinking him hopelessly uninventive. "I don't know why we didn't get along," Glanville says. "Most dead people like me."
•Houston's defensive backs. Glanville said his new ones in Atlanta are "real, not made out of paper or cardboard." The Oiler secondary took that rather badly. "The man's a joke," said cornerback Patrick Allen. "I didn't listen to him then, and I don't listen to him now."
•The city of Houston. When Glanville landed in Atlanta in January to interview for the Falcon job, he stepped onto the tarmac and said, "If you're not sleeping in Atlanta, you're just camping out."
•Oiler quarterback Warren Moon. He was Jerry's kid for four years in Houston but didn't rate one mention in Glanville's new (and, incidentally, hilarious) book, Elvis Don't Like Football. Moon doesn't seem to mind; he's just glad to be done with Glanville. "It got to be a circus atmosphere around here," said Moon in Houston last Thursday. "We'd have the national media coming in and asking us about snakebites. There were so many distractions, you could hardly concentrate on football."
Even a few folks outside Houston figured to be rooting against Glanville. For one, there's L.A. Ram quarterback Jim Everett, whom Houston traded in 1986 several months after Glanville arrived. In his book Glanville writes, "[Everett] said he thanks God every day that he didn't have to play for us, that he was thankful to go somewhere where he could get good coaching. After we played against him twice, it was obvious he needed great coaching."
Last Friday, Glanville even sideswiped his replacement in Houston, Jack Pardee. "He must be a great coach," said Glanville. "He's making three times as much as the last guy they had in there."
Pardee wasn't biting. "Jerry's not going to be on the field," said Pardee. "If he is, we'll get some yards out of it."