thoughts and links

Posts Tagged "NFL"

Jerry Jones is rich. We all know this. But HOW rich?
Jerry Jones is rich enough to hire someone to wash his glasses for him.

Jerry Jones is rich. We all know this. But HOW rich?

Jerry Jones is rich enough to hire someone to wash his glasses for him.


Steelers’ RB is a conspiracy theorist too, a truther

I guess I missed this in the flood of information last night and today — but Pittsburgh Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall is a Truther. 

Mike Freeman flagged Mendenhall’s “twitter meltdown” though Mendenhall seems to have come to his senses and deleted the messages from his meltdown where he wonders if Osama bin Laden really was behind the attacks on 9/11.

While much of the country is celebrating the death of Osama Bin Laden, one man, Pittsburgh running back Rashard Mendenhall is basically defending him.

Oh, boy. I mean, seriously, Rashard, oh boy. This is going to be bad for you, bra’. Here is the link to his Twitter .

This is the quote from Mendenhall that will get him in deep poopy doo: “I’m not convinced he was even behind the attacks we have really seen no evidence to prove it other than the gov telling us.”

That one isn’t there anymore, but this tweet is:

@dkeller23 We’ll never know what really happened. I just have a hard time believing a plane could take a skyscraper down demolition style

Then again, this is from the same Twitter feed as this gem:

Whenever you see a man and wonder “why hes with her?” it’s cause she do things that you won’t! #NASTY

His teammate, James Harrison, has a different conspiracy theory. He wonders if the US really killed bin Laden

S&P: Networks will lose money in NFL lockout

A judge ruled that NFL owners won’t be getting money from TV networks during a lockout because the deal was not bargained in good faith with the NFL Players Association. This doesn’t mean that the TV networks will get off unscathed if the lockout extends to the playing season, as many fear.

CNBC writes that the credit rating company Standard and Poor’s says the companies will lose out of revenue from not broadcasting games. Not a surprise, as NFL games are not only highly rated but have expensive advertising because of their live nature (in other words, people are more likely to watch live than DVR and skip the commercials later).

Anyway, CNBC reports:

"In a worst case scenario of an entire lost season, we believe that the ad revenue decline during replacement programming and the drop in ad revenue for programs immediately following games would overwhelm the net savings of having cheaper replacement programming instead of the NFL production costs," the report said. "Thus, even with the production cost savings, we believe there is a risk that the networks could still be subject to profitability declines for the season."

 Standard & Poor’s said NBC would probably suffer the most because it airs its games on Sundays in primetime versus CBS and Fox , whose games air during the day. Critics might say NBC is less exposed because it doesn’t have double headers — so it has less ad inventory. Thanks to greater access to alternative programming, due to the other sports rights it owns including college football, the effect on ESPN’s business would be more modest, according to S & P. It is also believed that ESPN is less exposed because cable operators own some of the local inventory for their own use. S & P says that  DirecTV, whose new four-year, $4 billion contract for NFL Sunday Ticket is set to begin this season, is also modestly exposed because “lower subscriber acquisition costs would temper the impact of lower revenue growth,” the report said.

Where they make the footballs for the #SuperBowl

Paul Lukas has a great story up at about the Wilson factory where they make all of the NFL game footballs — including the footballs for the Super Bowl.

The thing about the footballs for the Super Bowl, however, are that they have the names of the two teams printed on the footballs. And they didn’t know the names of the two teams who would be playing for the championship until last week.

That means that all of the footballs, including for practices, had to be built in a small plant in rural Ohio.

So do they start making the Super Bowl footballs the Monday after the conference championship games? Well, no.

"Wow," I said to Molly Wallace, the Wilson publicist who was explaining all of this to me, "so I guess your football factory must be hopping on the Monday after those games."

"Oh, they don’t wait until Monday," she said. "A work crew shows up at the factory during halftime of the second game on Sunday. They have some pizza and soda on hand and make a little TV party out of it. Then, when that game is over and we know who’ll be playing in the Super Bowl, they start making footballs."

"Wait a second," I said, checking the playoff schedule and doing some quick math, "that game won’t be finished until about 10 p.m."

"That’s right," Wallace said. "They work all night, until five or six in the morning. Then a new crew comes in to take over for them."

That sounded like a hoot. So I packed a bag, told Wallace to order an extra pizza for me and made arrangements to visit tiny Ada, Ohio (population 5,300), where Wilson makes all the footballs for the NFL.

Cool stuff.

Every QB who has won the Super Bowl is still alive

ESPN has a cool slideshow showing the 28 quarterbacks who have won the Super Bowl. One thing I noticed — they are all still alive.

Which, considering the brutality and wear and tear of football, is pretty amazing. 

Here are some of the notable names:

The oldest is Bart Starr, who is now 77 years old. He won two Super Bowls, Super Bowls I and II, and was MVP of both. In addition to those two Super Bowls, Starr won three NFL championships before that. 

And I can’t go on without mentioning Len Dawson since I’m a Chiefs fan. The Chiefs lost Super Bowl I, but Dawson and the Chiefs rebounded to take Super Bowl IV over the Minnesota Vikings. Dawson was Super Bowl MVP in that game. Dawson’s Chiefs also won an AFL Championship in 1962.

Note: The first four Super Bowls featured with NFL champions against the AFL champions. So, counting the Super Bowl as the NFL Championship, Starr won five NFL championships and Dawson won three AFL championships.

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ Terry Bradshaw won four Super Bowl titles and two Super Bowl MVPs, all in the 1970s. He can now be seen laughing at dumb jokes on Fox’s NFL pre-game show. 

Joe Montana also won four Super Bowl titles, all in the 1980s for the San Francisco 49ers. He was the MVP of three Super Bowls, the most of any player in NFL history. Montana is, mainly because of this, also arguably the greatest quarterback in the game’s history.

Doug Williams of the Washington Redskins was the first, and still only, African-American quarterback to win a Super Bowl. He earned himself the Super Bowl MVP nod in Super Bowl XXII for his performance.

Troy Aikman won three Super Bowls in the 1990s for the hated (by me) Dallas Cowboys. He won the Super Bowl MVP once and will be heard next Sunday doing the play-by-play for Fox’s Super Bowl broadcast.

Tom Brady also has three Super Bowl titles and has two MVPs. 

The youngest Super Bowl winner is Ben Roethlisberger. He has two Super Bowl titles to his name and he is just 28 years old (the next youngest is Eli Manning). When Roethlisberger won his first Super Bowl in 2006, he became the youngest QB to win a Super Bowl, younger than Tom Brady.

Roethlisberger can join the elite three-time-Super-Bowl-winning-quarterback club next Sunday but oddly enough doesn’t have an MVP to his name.

Of the 44 Super Bowl MVPs, 23 are quarterbacks. Of the ten quarterbacks to win multiple Super Bowls, only Roethlisberger and Griese don’t have an MVP in a Super bowl.

Oh, and if the Green Bay Packers win next Sunday, Aaron Rodgers, 27, will be the youngest Super Bowl MVP winner as of today. 

In this video, an apparently drunk Hines Ward and the rest of the tone-deaf Pittsburgh Steelers sing Christmas carols in such a manner that makes the Super Bowl Shuffle seems competent.

In their defense, most of them look ashamed of being there.

NFL dominates TV

The NFL is the biggest thing when it comes to TV. The only thing that is perhaps comparable in its dominance is American Idol and there is some thought that Idol’s reign of terror over the TV landscape may be coming to an end soon.

But the NFL? In an age of declining ratings shares, more and more people continue to tune into the action on the gridiron.

NBC’s Sunday night games are up 10 percent this season. With three games left, “Sunday Night Football” is certain to complete the fall as the most-watched offering in prime time, the first time the N.F.L.’s prime-time showcase (which began in 1970 as “Monday Night Football”) has ever attained the top ranking.

CBS’s Sunday afternoon games are also soaring, up about 10 percent from last year. Games on Fox are up about 2 percent. ESPN’s Monday games are about flat with last season, which that network considers remarkable because last season’s games broke all records.

The games on ESPN not only dominate cable television (the top 13 spots in cable ratings this fall are all N.F.L. games) but also have become a force against a network show on that night. While the show, “Dancing With the Stars” on ABC, managed to draw more viewers over all, “Monday Night Football” smashed all its competition among the younger-adult viewers most sought by the networks.

There are some advantages to watching football on TV. You can see every little thing in HD. In my opinion, sports have been helped by the advent of high definition TV more than any other type of programming. 

Watching soccer on Fox Soccer Channel, which does not currently have an HD version in my area, versus watching soccer in HD on ESPN is like watching two completely different sports.

Plus, it happens in the winter. It’s cold outside in much of the country and it is easier to sit inside and watch football all day Sunday instead of, you know, doing something.

However, everything isn’t perfect for these networks that are lucky enough to pay billions of dollars for the TV rights. Sometimes they make significant missteps:

 For the last two weeks, on regional games with smaller audiences, the network has played a musical score in accompaniment with the coverage of the games. The idea, Fox contends, could be the next big innovation in television football coverage because the audience is growing more accustomed to having music with every form of entertainment.

Trust me, it’s distracting. Then again, I bet people said the same thing when they put the yellow first down line on the field back in the day. Now it is hard to watch football without the yellow line.

Flashback to Ripken’s streak ending

Before Brett Favre, there was Cal Ripken, Jr. Well, only in that Ripken an Favre both had record-breaking streaks of consecutive games-played. 

Here is how the Associated Press wrote about Ripken’s streak ending:

On his own terms and own turf, the Baltimore Orioles' third baseman sat out of Sunday night's game against the New York Yankeeswith just one week left in the season, telling his manager: “I think the time is right.”

"I was going to take the last day of the season off in Boston, but I thought about it a long time and decided if this is going to end, let it end where it started in Baltimore," the 38-year-old Ripken said after the game, a 5-4 victory by the Yankees.

Ripken had made up his mind days earlier to end the streak in the Orioles’ final home game of the season. Afterward, he looked back on the night with the same sense of awe he experienced when he broke Lou Gehrig’s seemingly unreachable mark of 2,130 straight games on September 6, 1995.

"This shouldn’t be a sad moment. I look at it as a happy moment, a celebration," Ripken said.

DeSean Jackson’s TD celebration in .gif form. 

Edit: No clue why it isn’t being animated here. Must be something with Tumblr. Click on the picture for the original .gif.

DeSean Jackson’s TD celebration in .gif form. 

Edit: No clue why it isn’t being animated here. Must be something with Tumblr. Click on the picture for the original .gif.