21 Apr 2005, 02:11pm by Aaron Schatz
Somehow between writing and editing chapters for Pro Football Prospectus 2005, I found time to put together this article for ESPN Page 2 on the best one-team draft classes since the combined draft began in 1967. Clearly, I am insane. As I note in the article, I could have just done this as "top Pittsburgh Steelers draft classes since 1967" and the list would have been about as good. Pittsburgh's ability to snag great players with both early and late picks is just remarkable.
20 Apr 2005, 03:11pm by Michael David Smith
This article is a little hard to decipher, but it sounds as though Warren Sapp received lots of fan mail in 2001 and sold it, unopened, to a sports memorabilia company. The company has filed for bankruptcy and an auction house will now auction all the letters. So some kid sends Warren Sapp a letter, and Sapp not only doesn't read it, but he sells it. A real class act.
20 Apr 2005, 01:49pm by Aaron Schatz
Alan Greenberg of the Hartford Courant on how draft preparation has gone from guys picking college players they read about in magazines to a year-round stew of video study, workouts, staff meetings, and statistical analysis. As Gil Brandt tells it, "Guys would come in with their Street and Smith's football magazine, the Billings Gazette, and a roll of quarters. Reason they had to have the quarters was for the phones, because there were no credit cards in those days."
19 Apr 2005, 01:01pm by Aaron Schatz
Our man TMQ is back with his mock draft that mocks the draft, along with some complaints about basketball and science fiction and the projection of the seventh round. Look out for that run on punters!
19 Apr 2005, 08:33am by P. Ryan Wilson
For a team that only has five picks in the draft and a lot of needs, trading away their first rounder for the rights to CB Phillip Buchanon and Oakland's 2nd round selection seems kind of silly. Apparently, Washington's worried that three of the top CBs (Adams, Rolle and Rogers) might be gone by the time the 9th pick rolls around; there's also some concern that a rookie would be slow to pick up the complex defensive schemes the Redskins run, and that might hamper his ability to contribute next season.
18 Apr 2005, 05:42pm by Al Bogdan
Monday Night Football is moving to ESPN in 2006. Not a complete shock. What is a surprise is what has just been reported by Mike Francesca on WFAN 660 in New York -- Sunday Night Football is moving to NBC.
18 Apr 2005, 10:59am by Ned Macey
Peter King forecasts the top 12 picks in this weekend's draft. He practically guarantees Alex Smith will go first. He thinks Minnesota will draft a running back and Miami will trade down as far as they can go. This could be King at his best or worst, as he claims that many organizations have grown exceedingly tight-lipped this draft. He is a good reporter, so maybe he has uncovered the truth. King also has some harsh words for TO and some nice things to say about Jon Kitna.
14 Apr 2005, 05:49pm by P. Ryan Wilson
Just as Russell predicted last week, the NFL has now banned the sale of all #7 Falcons jerseys with the name "Mexico." If you're really dying for a memento however, you can visit www.ronmexico.com and order a Ron Mexico t-shirt with Vick's image, his number and the name "MEXICO."
It really is a shame the Falcons aren't playing south of the border this season. (may require bugmenot/free registration)
14 Apr 2005, 03:03pm by Michael David Smith
Michael Silver gets a lot of points for the idea but not for the execution. He imagines a draft in which every team has the right to choose any active NFL player. His first pick, ridiculously, is Michael Vick. He also has Marvin Harrison going in the first round, ignoring Harrison's age even though he explicitly mentioned the importance of age earlier in the piece. Still, this should be a lively conversation starter.
13 Apr 2005, 02:47pm by Aaron Schatz
Here you go, the 2005 schedule has officially been announced. I mentioned when this was first posted that the league had set things up so the Steelers would need to beat the Patriots in order to match their regular season record of 18 straight victories. It turns out this is slightly wrong. New England travels to Pittsburgh in Week 3, which would represent Pittsburgh's 17th straight regular season win, one short of the record. Then the Steelers get a bye and, assuming they are 3-0, would try to tie the record in San Diego on Monday Night Football.
Possibly the closest Super Bowl matchup in history also poses the question: how much does it mean when certain aspects of an NFL team improve dramatically in the second half of the season?