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» Clutch Encounters: Week 7

Saints bomb again in the final minutes. Also: Kyle Orton's rare GWD, Andy Reid's game management, the return of Colt McCoy, Jets' regression and you can't blow out Russell Wilson.

16 Aug 2007

The Week in Quotes: August 16, 2007

compiled by Ben Riley

HOW YOU GONNA GET THE MONEY? SEND PAPERS TO AN EMPTY HOME?

"Somebody has to get the money."

-- Priest Holmes, explaining how his love for the game led to his return to the NFL

"Hey, if L.J. wants to leave the money out there, guess I'm going to take it. If he wants to come get it, it's rightfully his to take. He's earned it. But if he chooses not to come back, well, somebody has to take it. Why won't it be me?"

-- Holmes

"This is about perseverance and having a great story to tell. I think that all the valuable years I've put into my tank, there's a lot in me still."

-- Holmes

"'Dubious' is a great word. But dedication is a little bit more defined in concrete. I mean, we have what's called 'making it rain.' We have the dogfighting, we have so many things that have cast a negative light on the NFL. This is just a great story to show guys that regardless of what situation you're in, you can persevere."

-- Holmes, responding to a question about whether he had dubious motives (i.e., money) for returning to the NFL

"Once I saw myself, the first thing I looked at it was as if I was a fan. I said, 'Man, I did that? Oh, that's a nice run. Oh, I love that touchdown move right there. I got to do that again.'"

-- Holmes, describing how he enjoys watching film of himself (circa 2003)

"If he's able to come back, he understands and accepts the fact that he would have a different role than when he was the starter."

-- Herm Edwards, alluding to his plans to run the other Chiefs' running back into the ground once he's signed (ESPN.com)

THE CONCIENTIOUS OMNIVORE

"It's like when you're a kid -- to get to the luscious piece of cake, you have to eat the green beans and broccoli. The cake is the season. You've got to get yourself in shape."

-- Saints defensive lineman Hollis Thomas, describing his mental approach to training camp

"I haven't been fast-fooding it up. I'm just trying to keep it green and lean, baby."

-- Thomas, describing his eating habits (and concerns about obesity)

"I'm a fat guy. I have a different makeup."

-- Thomas

"What would you desire? Would you like bacon and eggs? Pancakes? Everybody enjoys my spaghetti. Everybody enjoys my chicken and fish. I'm versatile."

-- Thomas, describing his culinary specialties moments after describing his green-and-lean weight-loss strategy (New Orleans Times-Picayune)

V.D. CAN BE SUCH A DISTRACTION

"It's funny, a lot of people try to make the comparison with T.O. and [second-year 49ers TE Vernon Davis]. But from talking to [Davis], he's different than that. He's got a serious side."

-- 49ers linebacker Jeff Ulbrich, teammate to Davis and T.O.

"People bring up the T.O. thing with Vernon, but it's not like that at all."

-- 49ers quarterback Alex Smith

"Guys like Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates, they're not all-around players. If you look at it, they're not finishing their blocks. They just catch passes."

-- Vernon Davis

"If you saw last year, none of those guys can tackle me out there. They can't tackle me."

-- Davis (San Jose Mercury News)

YOUNG MAN! THERE'S NO NEED TO FEEL DOWN! I SAID, YOUNG MAN! PICK YOURSELF OFF THE GROUND!

"We're excited to announce 'Steely McBeam' as the name of our new team mascot."

-- Steelers President Art Rooney II

"It was a difficult decision and we received many deserving entries, but we expect him to be a favorite among our youngest fans."

-- Rooney on McBeam

"The Steelers last had a mascot, Stevie Steeler, from the mid-1980s to mid-'90s."

-- from Steelers press release announcing the incarnation of Steely McBeam (click link to see pictures of McBeam at Steelers.com)

THE SLY FOX AND THE BIG CHIN (COWHER, NOT McBEAM)

"That's part of the game, I don't blink at that."

-- Panthers head coach John Fox, reacting to rumors that Bill Cowher will be taking over his job for 2008

"I've said to Jake that in this profession, we're under attack. That's why we get compensated like we do. You can't shy away from that."

-- Fox, slyly addressing rumors that he will be replacing Jake Delhomme with David Carr

"I was awful on third down, I just didn't get it done."

-- A refreshingly candid Jake Delhomme

"The head coach and the quarterback get more credit and blame in this league than they deserve."

-- Fox (Tampa Bay Tribune)

HEY, HEY, HEY, IT'S ROB SIMS

"I was like, 'Hey, this is all right.'"

-- 310-pound Seahawks left guard Rob Sims, describing his 16-yard rumble after catching a deflected pass

"That was the Fat-Boy Route."

-- Seahawks center Chris Spencer, describing Sims' pattern

"Oh, man, I saw his eyes, and I thought, 'I'm about to kill this guy.' But he went low on me."

-- Sims' description of approaching Chargers safety Clinton Hart. Hart made the tackle. (Tacoma News-Tribune)

HE DOESN'T LIKE PLAYBOY, AND HE DOESN'T LIKE PRESEASON

"Noooooo. I want to rest up."

-- Bears defensive tackle Tommie Harris, when asked if he planned to play in the Bears' first preseason game

"The preseason goes toward concession stands. It sells. Yes, I would rather be without the preseason."

-- Harris, daring to speak the truth about the NFL preseason

"Michael Jordan iced his knees, baby. Prevention."

-- Harris, describing his fitness regimen (Chicago Tribune)

"I have four sisters and no interest in promoting Hugh Hefner's agenda. What would I be saying by being in that magazine? That I'm poor and am looking for publicity? That I like girls in swimsuits? I don't even like pornography."

-- Harris in 2002, explaining his refusal to appear in Playboy's collegiate All-American issue (Sports Illustrated)

INVINCIBLE (THE SEQUEL)

"I sold drugs probably when I was 15. For, like, a couple months. Then I was, like, 'It's not for me.' My conscience got to me."

-- Packers wide receiver and special teamer Shaun Bodiford, describing his rough upbringing

"A crackhead walked into my room and said, 'I can kill you right now.' I woke up and he was looking at me. I don't know if he was holding a gun but he was holding something. I just lay there. That's why I'm really not afraid of anything but failure."

-- Bodiford, describing a night in high school

"My stepdad was a Blood. I've just been around. I never got jumped into a gang or claimed anything or anything like that."

-- Bodiford

"I just have that feeling ... that I can be a great receiver. One day my name's going to be just like Donald Driver's and Charles Woodson's and Al Harris'. I got a rough exterior, you know? But inside I'm a little softie."

-- Bodiford (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

SERIOUSLY, DOESN'T JERRY JONES HAVE ENOUGH CASH?

"That's why I got the job, because of my dancing."

-- Cowboys owner and billionaire Jerry Jones, describing his commercial endorsement for Papa John's Pizza

"The good news is it sells some pizzas."

-- Jones, describing the good news

"I guess it dispels the myth that white people can't dance."

-- T.O. (Dallas Star-Telegram)

GO SPEED LIAR, GO SPEED LIAR, GO!

"I ran under a 4.1."

-- Second-year Panthers WR Taye Biddle, describing his fastest 40-yard dash time in college. The fastest recorded 40 time is 4.25 seconds (by Raiders cornerback Fabian Washington)

"Um ..."

-- Panthers head coach John Fox, reacting to Biddle's claim

"I'm fast enough that other guys won't race me. They won't even challenge me."

-- Biddle (Charlotte Observer)

THAT WOULD EXPLAIN THE BUG EYES

"When Reche [Caldwell] first came in he was looking pretty, running fast, and we were like, 'Damn, this guy is going to be real good for us.' The first preseason game he caught a pass and he turned it up and he got hit and he fumbled and he came back over and said, 'Whew, them guys are hitting out there.' I said, 'What do you think they do? You thought you'd be running around in shorts all the time? These guys hit in this league!'"

-- LaDainian Tomlinson on former Chargers WR Reche Caldwell (Yahoo! Sports)

"Just the way they were acting after the game kind of irked me. A couple of the guys on the team weren't being too professional. It is only a preseason game, but 87 [Caldwell] needs to keep his head on a swivel, that's all I've got to say."

-- Titans linebacker Keith Bulluck, referring to Caldwell's on-field celebration after the Patriots defeated the Titans at the end of the 2006 season, and Bulluck's plan to enact revenge during the upcoming Titans-Patriots preseason game

"There are no personal vendettas or anything like that, there is just one person in particular that sticks out in mind. He is probably the sixth receiver, so I don't even know if he'll be in when I'm in. If he is, I'll know, trust me."

-- Bulluck

"I hope his old [butt] is out there, too."

-- Bulluck, referring to Patriots third-string quarterback Vinny Testaverde (Boston Globe)

WE SAY AGAIN: SIMMS DOESN'T OWE THE BUCS A DAMN THING.

"If I have to sit out a year, I'm totally prepared for it. I really am. I have a long, long career in front of me."

-- Buccanneers quarterback Chris Simms, reacting to the possibility he will be cut or place on injured reserve by Tampa Bay

"If [I do get cut] -- and I hope that doesn't happen, trust me -- but if it does happen, I'm not going to go anywhere else until I feel like I am ready to play again and to feel like the old Chris Simms again."

-- Simms

"It's an injury that not a whole lot of people have had. It's a difficult one to rehabilitate. Like I've been saying, an ACL injury takes 12 months. I had the middle of my body cut open. I think sometimes I have to remember that it was a serious injury and it might take a little time."

-- Simms

"As far as the injury that I had, there's only been one player in the history of NFL who has had it. I don't know who it was. It was somebody in the 1970s and that's the only one I ever heard of -- and he wasn't a quarterback."

-- Simms

"It's tough. This is a tough pill to swallow. But you know what? I worked too hard and when I came out here to camp and still didn't feel right. I was really hard on myself the first few days, but then I had to be real honest with myself. I just don't feel right. It's not in my head. It's nothing like that. Something is just off with the way I throw the ball. It's made me take a step back and say, 'Let me get right first. Let me get right before I start really criticizing myself too much.'"

-- Simms (Pewter Report)

MAYBE THE RADAR IS ON THE BUS?

"People are throwing us underneath the radar."

-- Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce, describing the lack of pundit enthusiasm for Big Blue this year (New York Daily News) (Thanks to alert reader Gerry D. )

THE REST

"Right now the AFC West, I'm clearly the back that's not even in this hemisphere. When you look at Travis Henry, Larry Johnson and LaDainian, I'm not even mentioned on the same page as those guys."

-- Forgotten-but-honest Raiders running back Lamont Jordan (Inside Bay Area)

"We're going to wear his little froggy rear end out."

-- Lions offensive coordinator Mike Martz, describing his plans for newly signed Lions' wide receiver Calvin Johnson in the first preseason game (Detroit Free Press)

"[LaDainian Tomlinson] and I, we're good friends and we talk all the time about it but last year is really the only year that he has beat me at anything. It just is what it is."

-- The always humble Shaun Alexander, comparing himself to Tomlinson (Tacoma News-Tribune)

"Just kick him in the [groin]. He'll stop."

-- Chiefs DE Jared Allen, describing how to stop an offensive lineman from holding (KansasCity.com)

"With [Michael Vick] gone from the offense, I feel like I could be the face of the franchise."

-- Falcons cornerback DeAngelo Hall, finding the silver lining (USA Today)

"I already gave him a piece of my bank account. I don't want to give him anything else."

-- 49ers WR Ashley Lelie, explaining his disinterest in giving his former head coach Mike Shanahan a piece of his mind. Lelie was forced to repay a portion of his signing bonus to the Broncos after losing in arbitration. (San Jose Mercury News)

"He said he wasn't scared. He said he was at peace, and he said he was ready to go. It was the most impressive display of courage I've ever seen."

-- Mike White, longtime friend and coaching colleague of Bill Walsh's, describing his final conversation with Walsh (Seattle Times)

Send quote ideas to quotes-at-footballoutsiders.com. And kids -- don't do crack. It's a ghetto drug.

Posted by: Ben Riley on 16 Aug 2007

44 comments, Last at 21 Aug 2007, 3:17pm by DB

Comments

1
by Banewulf (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:09pm

Misspelled LaDainian Tomlinson's name....wasn't sure if it was on purpose....

2
by Ben Riley :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:23pm

You're supposed to say "First!," then correct my spelling mistakes. It's fixed now.

3
by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:37pm

Third!

Thanks for being so conscientious, Ben.

4
by Doctor Hook (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:46pm

As a 9ers fan, I do occasionally wish Vernon Davis would shut the hell up. But I have to say, he was an impressive blocker last year and he looked even better in his limited action against the Broncos on Monday. If he can fulfill his receiving potential, and he's looked pretty damn unstoppable in TC, then he will indeed be a more complete TE than Gates and Gonzalez, neither of whom are particularly strong as blockers (although I would say that Gonzo has his moments).

5
by Joe T. (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:54pm

Last year everyone was concerned about being thrown under the bus. This season, being thrown under the radar.

6
by Joe T. (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 2:56pm

The Deangelo Hall quote is just great.

7
by Thok (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 3:15pm

The whole Steely McBeam think makes me want to make up fake mascot names for other teams.

Packy McBox?
Viky McPillage?
Matey McLoot?
Niny McGold?
Chargy McInterest Rate?

8
by Joe T. (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 3:23pm

Steely McBeam sounds like a porn star name.

9
by C (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 3:43pm

How about:

Patriot McMissle?
Bears McSterns?

10
by JJcruiser (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 3:45pm

What kind of a world is it when T.O. makes a smart, funny, sardonic comment and Herm Edwards sounds normal?

Thank goodness for Piece's radar and Martz's bizarre froggie comment.

Is Vernon Davis actually even good? I know he was a workout wonder last year at the combine, and I know he was injured. That's about all I know about him. I think he's got a long way to go before he should be criticizing HoFers like Gonzales and Gates.

11
by Phil (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 4:04pm

JJ #9
RE: Davis
I remember watching him in a number of games during his last year in college and thinking that he was an absolute beast. He was never tackled by a single defender. He just owned the field when he had the ball. And this was in the ACC (granted, not known for its defence), not the Sun-belt or a 2nd teir division. I've also heard he's a work-out warrior, hence the amazing combine results. But like you, I don't know how that will translate to the NFL.

Also,
Lets settle down on annointing Gates as a HOFer, shall we? Give me a couple more years of similar productivity--not a big stretch of the imagination, admittedly--and I'll be right their with you.

12
by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 4:23pm

"Bears McSterns?"

I was thinking "Bears McGrowly"

13
by Bobman (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 4:30pm

I love TO's dry comment about white guys dancing. And, of course, Antonio Pierce's radar line. The mixed cliche reminds me of one of Tom Jackson's favorite quotes from 1995--instead of saying they were having a Jeckyll and Hyde year, a Colts DB said they were having a "Heckell and Jeckyll season." Which TJ reminded us of weekly for the rest of the year.

14
by Mr. Beefy (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 4:34pm

What about Snuff McFrotteur as a team mascot? :).

15
by mawbrew (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 4:44pm

Re: 9

Well, Davis had a -25% DVOA last year, which ranked him 41st out of 43 TEs with enough receptions to 'qualify'.

He may turn out to be a great TE, but I would be nervous about anybody drawing this many public comparisons to T.O.

16
by Independent George (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 6:32pm

Bears McSterns

Now THAT is a Loser League team.

17
by Jimmy (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 8:04pm

Can someone please explain the 'Doctor Cockney' advert to me. I understand that the outsiders need revenue, but I bought the book, Kubiak (and I don't even play fantasy football, I just wanted to see what it did) and am planning to buy the advanced DVOA premium stat thingy. I still have no objection to the vast majority of advertising, but 'Doctor Cockney' is seriously unneccessary (I am sure I have spelt that word wrong), he just looks like some kind of pervert or sex offender. I buy almost everything you guys put up for sale, please give us more CMG and less Doctor F***ing Cockney. Or failing that, just less of the sex offender.

18
by DolFan 316 (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 8:40pm

I believe ex-Bills and Raiders WR Bob Chandler was the guy Simms was referring to who also needed his spleen removed after an injury.

Otherwise this week's material was sort of...blah. Last week's was much better. We need more Herm.

19
by DolFan 316 (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 8:41pm

I did like the opening reference though. I wonder how many people will get that?

20
by Glenn (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 8:47pm

Steely McBeam = ripoff of Rusher McFumbles. By the way, McFumbles is a lot more poised in his third year and can safely shed the FO nickname now.

21
by Dwight Cans (not verified) :: Thu, 08/16/2007 - 9:38pm

Re: 19
Cans did not get the reference, but Cans did enjoy many of the quotes, especially the one about Vinny Testaverde- a true loser.

22
by MJK (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 12:57pm

Wow, Bulluck doesn't know how to keep his mouth shut! It begs the question--if hypothetically either Caldwell or Testaverde get injured by Bulluck tonight, what action does the league take? Even an innocent accident involving Bulluck and either of those two players will look really bad for Bulluck.

I find it especially annoying because it was the TITANS that were playing without class in that game last year. They seemed to think that, because they Patriots had clinched a playoff birth, they should have been playing their scrubs and not trying to win (never mind that the seeding wasn't clinched yet). And seemed to take personal offense when the Patriots, you know, actually came out and played football. Gasp! The nerve! So as a result, the Titans were intentionally trying to cause as many injuries as possible, in order to try to force Belichick to pull his starters, and ended up knocking Rodney Harrison out for the playoffs with a dirty play...one of many pointless, vicious cheap shots over the entire course of that game by the Titans (remember all the personal foul flags flying?). That game made me lose a lot of respect for Jeff Fisher, and for practically every player on the Titans, and they are now probably the team that I dislike the most... Yes, even more than the Colts... I won't wish injury on a player, but I hope the Titans go 4-12 this year!

23
by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 1:13pm

Re #22
That game was incredibly chippy, on both sides. If you're wondering why Ed Hochuli didn't work any playoff games, check out the tape of that game-he lost control early and started calling semi-random personal fouls to assert his AUTHORI-TAY.

The Pats played their starters for playoff position-it didn't end up mattering, because the Colts won their late game, and actually cost them, with the Harrison injury (on a perfectly legal block by Bobby Wade). The thing that really rankles me, as a Titans fan, was the Testaverde TD pass. At that point, the Pats could simply have taken a knee three times and ended the game. Instead, Bill Belichick decides to do his buddy a favor and, incidentally, runs up the score.

24
by pat on the back (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 1:37pm

In the spirit of the origin of the name, shouldn't "Packy McBox" be "Packy McMeat"? I mean, both are equally suggestive...

25
by Dwight Cans (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 1:55pm

Re: 22

Obviously a poster with an agenda.

Also it is obvious said poster did not watch the game. Rodney Harrison hit Bobby Wade late on the previous play. Harrison got away with it in that no flag was thrown. However, Wade got him back the very next play.

The final touchdown pass, so that Testaverde could extend his silly record that nobody cares about, was completely and thoroughly unnecessary.

Cans has spoken.

26
by Gandhi (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 2:40pm

The block by Wade on Harrison was perfectly legal cut block. Just because Harrison got injured and then cried about it like a baby in the media doesn't automatically make it a cheap shot. Wade came in from the front, not the back or the side, and Harrison was not engaged with any other offensive players at the time. Therefore, it was, by definition, a legal block.

27
by The multitudinous posters of FO (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 4:05pm

Cans talks about himself in the third person, it's very annoying.

28
by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 6:04pm

"That game was incredibly chippy, on both sides. "

It was, in the second half. The personal fouls were pretty much all on one side in the first half.

The issue with the Rodney Harrison hit wasnt that it was illegal, and wasnt that it was a cut block. Its that it was a cut block directly at the knees (and not the thighs) of a guy just coming off of knee surgery, who wasnt involved in the play.

29
by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 6:35pm

Re #28
You mean "the personal fouls they called" were all on one side in the first half. There's a difference between what was called, and what should and should not have been called, and it went both ways that game.

As to Harrison not being involved in the play, as I remember, it was an outside run (off tackle?) right side. Wade lined up in something like a slot position right side, and blocked Harrison. That Harrison recently had knee surgery simply made him probably more vulnerable than normal to such a block.

It doesn't make me happy that Harrison was injured, aside from a bit of ironic amusement from a player known for dirty play and cheap shots being hurt by a perfectly legal "dirty play." Were I a Pats fan, I'd probably be angry over the play. As a Titans fan, I'm angry the Titans lost-as things shook out, it cost the Titans a playoff berth, so it was bitterly disappointing. But, I can accept that injuries and losses are part of the game. I can easily see a player like Bulluck being really mad the Pats won.

As I indicated above, though, the only thing that was unforgivable was Vinny T throwing the TD pass when the Pats could simply have run 3 kneeldowns and ended the game. THAT sort of running up the score for individual records is why I feel I can justifiably hate the classless Bill Belichick with the passion of a thousand burning suns and root for the Pats to lose every game 62-0, except for the games where they give up more than 62 points--all of this in a football only sense. It's not like I'd punch Bill Belichick in the face if I saw him walking toward me on the street or anything like that.

Just for the record, the Pats beat the Titans in Week 17 because they were the better team both that day, and the Pats were also the better team over the course of the season.

30
by MJK (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 8:49pm

Regarding the Testaverde TD:

Hypothetically, imagine your favorite baseball player is 1 HR short of breaking the all time record. It's late in the season, maybe even the last weekend, and your team has already clinched a playoff birth and is way way ahead (like 10-2 or something) in the last couple innings, and the other team's starter is gone and their bullpen is shot. In this situation, most managers will pull their starters, to rest them up for the postseason, and to give some of the young guys a shot to see what they can do in a major league setting. But because this player is so close to the HR record, the manager of course leaves him in. Said player hits a HR and breaks the record.

Would anyone, even fans of the losing team, complain that it was unsportsmanlike to leave that player in and let him try for the HR record?

I would have been annoyed if the Pats had gone for the TD in almost any other situation... the same way I'm furious at a CB who catches what could be a game-clinching interception when up late and, instead of falling down or running out of bounds, tries to run it back for a TD. But given that this allowed a record to be broken, and given that Testaverde is a personal friend of Belichick and has had a long and distinguished career, I don't blame Belichick in the slightest. I also don't blame the Titans for being a little annoyed, but it's one thing to be annoyed that a team broke a record at your expense; it's a totally different thing to threaten that player or that team the following year.

31
by MJK (not verified) :: Fri, 08/17/2007 - 8:49pm

Regarding the personal fouls:

I was being a little melodramatic in my first post...the number of unnecessary roughness penalties was about the same for both sides. I apologize for any trollishness that crept in. I just hate what I preceive as bad sportsmanship. Subjectively, it seemed to me, and to nearly all Pats fans that I have talked to, that the Titans came out early and were playing rough and dirty, and that they were dirtier earlier. Naturally, the Pats players go annoyed and started taking cheap shots back, especially after Harrison was injured, and Hochuli tried to get the situation under control by flagging both sides equally. But think about incentives...the Patriots want to win, but want to stay healthy even more, so they have no incentive for initiating rough play and risking injury in the inevitable backlash of the other team. On the other hand, the Titans had every incentive to play as dirty as they thought they could get away with, because by doing so they could theoretically have bullied the Pats into resting their starters. They therefore had motive to play as dirty as they could, and to my eye at least they acted on that motive. I'll concede that fans of the Titans may not have noticed this, and maybe it's all in my Patriots-fan clouded eyes, but that's the way it looked from my angle. Hence I am angry because I would hope teams and coaches would take the high road and not resort to such tactics (much the same way that I was very angry at Dallas in the SB where they, to my eye at least, intentionally took out Jim Kelly with a cheap shot).

On the Harrison thing...I'll concede that the play was legal. But legal and ethical are two different things. I find it somewhat suspect that a player who is the acknowledged defensive leader, with a well publicized history of severe knee injuries, should get taken out of the game (and the postseason) by a (legal) cut block directed AT THE KNEES, away from the play. It may have just been bad luck. However, I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if someone in the Titan's coaching organization had been instructing the players all week to play for Harrison's knees: "Harrison is going to be cautious about his knees...attack them, and you can throw him off his game even if you don't knock him out". I'm sure this goes on in almost every team whenever a key opposing player is nursing an injury (which is why I agree with Belichick and other coaches that injury data should not have to be made public), but it doesn't mean that I have to like it.

32
by Dwight Cans (not verified) :: Sat, 08/18/2007 - 1:25pm

re: 30

I can't compare Testaverde's "record" to a guy chasing the all-time HR record.

33
by IQFB (not verified) :: Sat, 08/18/2007 - 4:50pm

Great quotes... truly refreshing to see someone like Jake Delhomme acknowledge his own problems and not pin the blame on a offensive line coach or a second string strong safety.

34
by RICHCONLEY (not verified) :: Sun, 08/19/2007 - 12:42pm

If you have a problem with the other team "running up the score"....

Dont let them score.

This isnt fucking t-ball.

35
by MikeB (not verified) :: Sun, 08/19/2007 - 7:49pm

re:29 "THAT sort of running up the score for individual records is why I feel I can justifiably hate the classless Bill Belichick with the passion of a thousand burning suns"

#34 was right, they can't score if you do your job on defense. Personally I root for superior teams to crush their opponents because I am eternally annoyed by ideas like "taking it easy late" and "good sportsmanship." That's not a joke. It's a game in which 300-pound behemoths violently collide with each other at full speed, trying to throw one another to the ground. It's the closest thing to warfare you're gonna get outside of real warfare.

Talking about being a good sport in such a context is ridiculous and effeminate.

36
by Alex (not verified) :: Sun, 08/19/2007 - 10:55pm

As I indicated above, though, the only thing that was unforgivable was Vinny T throwing the TD pass when the Pats could simply have run 3 kneeldowns and ended the game. THAT sort of running up the score for individual records is why I feel I can justifiably hate the classless Bill Belichick with the passion of a thousand burning suns

Hating Bill Belichick is fine, but not for that. There's running up the score, and there's running up the score. It's not like the Patriots left their starters in and ran up 5 more TDs just to humiliate the Titans. They let their ancient backup QB throw one freakin' TD in garbage time, so that he would have something to brag about in the retirement home in a couple years. If the Titans didn't want to give up another TD, maybe they could've played well enough to stop a 43 year old QB from throwing a TD to a 35 year old WR/CB. Seriously, both of those guys are past retirement age at their positions, and the Titans couldn't stop that play? Come on man.

And really, without breaking that obscure record, what stories would poor old Testaverde have to tell his grandkids when he retires at the end of next season and starts collecting Social Security? "Boys, I used to be a heck of a QB, I threw 5 interceptions in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl, costing Miami the National Championship." Think of poor Vinny!

37
by Alex (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 1:08am

Talking about being a good sport in such a context is ridiculous and effeminate.

Yes, totally, talking about being a good sport, while playing a sport, is ridiculous and effeminate.

Seriously, man, even in real warfare, there are rules. After an enemy surrenders, you're not supposed to keep shooting them. Similarly, if a team that's being blown out puts out its backups and third-stringers (which amounts to a surrender of the game), you don't leave your starters in and pile on more points relentlessly. But again, that's not what happened here. The Patriots pulled their starters, and only scored one more TD. That's not really running up the score, at least not in the sense that should inspire intense hatred.

38
by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 2:11am

If it had been a single play, with a player reacting on instinct, I'd be more inclined to be forgiving. But, instead, Vinny T going for the TD was the result of a conscious decision by Belichick. He could simply have knelt the ball 3 times and walked off with the win. Instead, he acted stupidly and selfishly.

1. He put his players at an unnecessary risk of injuries. The injury risk on kneeldowns is essentially 0. He exposed his players to what happened to be 5 additional plays of injury risk.
2. He increased the risk of losing the game. The risk of losing the game with 3 kneeldowns was 0. Meanwhile, it was possible that Vinny T could have thrown an interception, or there could have been a fumble, and the Titans wouldn't have been the first team to score 10 points in the last 2 minutes of the game.
3. Reputational capital. The Pats came into Nashville and had beaten a Titans team that with a win could have (and, as it turned out, would have) made the playoffs with a win. Scoring an additional TD to achieve a personal risk was an insult to the professionalism of the opponents.

I'm not really interested in continuing this discussion, as you'll never convince me Belichick acted properly, and I don't expect you to suddenly you accept that I've been right all along. You can hate my team, I can hate your team, and we can all just get along that way.

39
by Andy (UK) (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 3:26am

'Steely McBeam'= George Hincapie. Lance abandoned him and His team Discovery have disbanded so I guess he needed a new Job!

40
by Alex (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 10:12am

1. He put his players at an unnecessary risk of injuries. The injury risk on kneeldowns is essentially 0. He exposed his players to what happened to be 5 additional plays of injury risk.

He also had 5 more plays to evaluate those players, and these were players that generally didn't play that much, so every chance you can get to evaluate them is a valuable thing. That's what garbage time is for, evaluating your backups. The injury risk for 5 plays is not that high, and honestly, if I were a backup player, and didn't get too many chances to get on the field and maybe impress my coaches, I'd want every opportunity I could get, injury risk be damned. And really, it's not like an injury to Vinny Testaverde would've been the end of the world.

2. He increased the risk of losing the game. The risk of losing the game with 3 kneeldowns was 0.

Aside from the fact that the Patriots still would've made the playoffs even if they had lost that game, the risk of losing with 3 kneeldowns was not 0. If the QB fumbles the snap on an attempted kneeldown, the defense could recover it, and the Patriots could've lost. So it's a matter of whether a slightly higher risk of losing the game and/or sustaining an injury to a backup player was worth the chance to evaluate his backups and figure out which ones would play well when they were needed. And it was. 5 plays worth of injury risk just isn't that much.

I’m not really interested in continuing this discussion, as you’ll never convince me Belichick acted properly, and I don’t expect you to suddenly you accept that I’ve been right all along. You can hate my team, I can hate your team, and we can all just get along that way.

Look man, I hate Belichick as much as the next guy (maybe more), but this is one of the only things that he did that I like. The only other one I can think of is when he let Doug Flutie dropkick an extra point.

41
by dryheat (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 1:19pm

#38, During the course of their championship-caliber cycle, the Patriots have had many opportunities to score late touchdowns to run up the score. Until the Tennessee game, every single one of them has ended with a QB kneel, so I don't think you can make Belichick out to be a bad sport. There was an opportunity to achieve a "special" thing for a player, and he accomodated it. I mean, if it were the last game of the season, and Vince Young needed a touchdown pass to be the first quarterback ever to score 20 TDs passing and 20 rushing in a season (or some other type or "record"), would you have a problem with Fisher allowing him to try to achieve it in the last game of the season, with the game in hand?

I also don't consider it running up the score when your starters are pulled.

I also echo the above posters who have no problem with professional athletes "running up the score". I abandon that thought at the NCAA level. Defensive players are PAID not to allow offensive players to score for 60 minutes plus whatever overtime may be played.

42
by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 4:05pm

Re #41
I wasn't accused Belichick of being a bad sport in general by running up the score, just in particular in this case. But he was did was so different, not to say outlandish, that I can't believe he wasn't criticized me for it. I don't know of a single other instance where any other NFL coach has ever made the decision to sacrifice team in favor of a particular player's individual record in quite so blatant a manner.

Oh, and just for the record, the Titans ran a drive that ended in an interception by Asante Samuel, so it's not like the Pats were only playing their backups. If Samuel, for example, had been injured on some plays that should never have happened, and the Pats lost to the Chargers, what effect would that have on your thinking?

For the record, I have and had no issues with the Flutie drop kick for the extra point. It was a nothing game, didn't put any risk on anybody other than the participant, and you have to try to the extra point anyway.

43
by Acero (not verified) :: Mon, 08/20/2007 - 9:19pm

Thankfully, that's over: "Cans" used the first person.

44
by DB (not verified) :: Tue, 08/21/2007 - 3:17pm

Really? We got all this way and no one suggested Rapey McStand?