After three NFL seasons of kicking off from the 35-yard line, what has been the impact on touchbacks, returns, field position, scoring and injuries? Also, is this rule responsible for a record number of big comebacks?
09 Aug 2007
compiled by Ben Riley
"Way to go, Will!"
-- Fan attending Kansas City Chiefs practice after watching offensive lineman Will Svitek and defensive lineman Turk McBride get in a scuffle
"No, that's not the way to go. It's embarrassing. He just got kicked out of the game. That's the way to go, huh?"
-- Chiefs head coach Herm Edwards, heckling the pro-fight fan
"I hear and see everything. When people make silly comments, they need to know about it. It's never good when a player gets kicked out of a game. I don't want a player to all of a sudden think it's good to fight."
-- Edwards (Kansas City Star)
"I think this is really a situation where you have a day off and the young guys just sort of shut their brains off. "
-- Edwards, describing the lackluster performance of younger players during practice
"Guys when they get to a certain age their legs go on them. Their brains still work; they know I need to get over there but their legs won't get them there."
-- Edwards, describing the lackluster performance of older players during practice (Chiefs.com)
"I hurt my butt cheek."
-- Dolphins rookie WR David Sutton, describing his injuries after making a diving catch during practice. Sutton is fighting for a roster spot.
-- Sutton, explaining his decision to transfer from the frigid University of Missouri to a California junior college
"[T]he world of volleyball is a whole different world. People don't know there's a lot of racism and I just got tired of hearing all that."
-- Sutton explaining why he abandoned his pursuit of of playing for the U.S. Men's Olympic Volleyball team (ESPN.com)
"I tried being a normal guy last year, and I think it hurt me as a player. I can't be the guy who just does what he's supposed to, and nothing way out there. It's not me.''
-- Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson, talking about his new, non-normal approach to football this year with Sports Illustrated's Peter King
"I tried it everybody else's way. Now I'm going back to my way. I've got my sex back.''
"I've got my sexy back. That means, I've got me back, I've got my own way back. And I promise you, it'll be more fun. You know me. I won't do anything to disrespect the game. I never have. I love this game more than anything. I might do something that'll cost me a game, but believe me, everybody will love it. The memory of it will last a lifetime.''
"My blocking? It sucks. I'm not gonna lie.''
-- Johnson (SI.com)
"I know my workload is going to be turned up a little bit. The expectations, not only for myself ... is going to be pretty high."
-- Dolphins running back Ronnie Brown, describing how he's going to overcome the PFP 2006 cover curse this year (we hope)
"I love running the football. There's been times in this league we've run it over 50 times a game. I mean, there's no better feeling."
-- Dolphins head coach Cam Cameron
"Everybody knows this system is running back-friendly and gives you the opportunity to touch the ball -- not only from the running back position, but also to be able to catch a lot of passes and be involved in the passing game as well."
"Coach Cameron has always had a featured back, and it is what I have always wanted to be. I look forward to the challenge. It will take us a little time to get all the pieces put together, but I like what this offense promises."
-- Brown (South Florida Sun Sentinel)
"I come out here and work hard just like everybody else. I deserve a couple of passes."
-- Steelers wide receiver Cedrick Wilson, complaining about the lack of passes thrown to him during practice
"Yeah, then you all talk about how I ain't [expletive] and I never get the [expletive] football."
-- Wilson, complaining about an underthrown football from Charlie Batch
"I can't help if the quarterback doesn't throw me the ball. I'm running my routes, I'm doing the right things. You can't help if the quarterback doesn't throw you the ball."
-- Wilson, griping about the lack of balls thrown to him
"You tell me. You watch the games. Don't you watch the games?"
-- Wilson, after being asked whether he's ignored when open
"I didn't do anything last year to have my job taken away from me but get hurt. You shouldn't lose your job on account that you got hurt, know what I mean? Plus, you only lose your job on account you got hurt with a first-round pick behind you. At the same time, I caught all the balls that were thrown to me last year."
-- Wilson, complaining about (1) getting injured and (2) having to compete for starting job with Santonio Holmes
"I just have to focus on the balls I get, I guess, because there ain't a lot of them, I'll tell you that much."
-- Wilson, complaining about his lack of targets (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
"He reminds me of Terrell [Davis], when I watch the way he runs."
-- Delusional Texans head coach Gary Kubiak, describing running back Ahman Green
"He's a downhill runner. He's bigger than you think. He likes the physical part of football. He likes to bang around, and if he gets a big enough crack, he's capable of going the distance. He reminds me of [Davis] quite a bit."
-- Kubiak on Green
"I know there's been questions about his age and how many years he's been playing and those types of things, but you guys are seeing the same thing I'm seeing. This kid looks like he's got a lot of big plays left in him, and I know it's going to be important for us to get the ball in his hands. He's doing a heck of a job."
-- Kubiak (Houston Texans)
"You know the Bible speaks of a healing place. It's called a threshing floor. The threshing floor is where you take your greatest fear and you pray for help from your great God. I want to share something with you today. I have two sons. Michael, he's 10, and Elijah, he's 8. Michael and Elijah, could you guys stand up for me. That's my heart right there. That's my heart. When I am on that threshing floor, I pray. I say, 'God, I have my struggles and I made some bad decisions, but whatever you do, whatever you do, don't let me mess this up.'"
-- Michael Irvin, accepting his induction into the NFL Hall of Fame
"I say, Please, help me raise them for some young lady so that they can be a better husband than I. Help me raise them for their kids so that they could be a better father than I. And I tell you guys to always do the right thing so you can be a better role model than dad."
"I doubted I would ever have the chance to stand before you today. So when I returned home, I spoke with Michael and Elijah . I said, 'That's how you do it, son. You do it like [Hall of Famers Troy Aikman, Warren Moon, Harry Carson, Rayfield Wright, John Madden, and Reggie White] did it.' Michael asked, he said, 'Dad, do you ever think we will be there?' And I didn't know how to answer that. And it returned me to that threshing floor. This time I was voiceless, but my heart cried out. 'God, why must I go through so many peaks and valleys?'"
"I wanted to stand in front of my boys and say, 'Do it like your dad, like any proud dad would want to. Why must I go through so much?' At that moment a voice came over me and said, 'Look up, get up, and don't ever give up. You tell everyone or anyone that has ever doubted, thought they did not measure up or wanted to quit, you tell them to look up, get up and don't ever give up.'"
-- Irvin (NFL Hall of Fame)
"[It's] something to do, to keep me out of the streets while I have my little off-time from my real job, and, I'm a big fan of wrestling, so I wanted to give it a try."
-- Adam "Pacman" Jones, explaining his decision to join Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling during his one-year suspension from the NFL
"It will help get my mind off a lot of stuff that I'm going through. It's sort of a way to relieve some stress."
-- Jones (USA Today)
"Pacman is a gifted athlete and though he has had some serious off-the-field issues, he has a chance to take his suspension and turn it into a positive, something good. We met with him numerous times before signing the contract, and each time we were thoroughly impressed with his desire to change his image, train hard and his commitment to take this opportunity to show a different side of himself."
-- TNA President Dixie Carter
"We are well aware of the controversy that might surround this signing, but it is our goal to help Pacman during his time away from football."
"Pacman wants to change his life, so we will do everything in our power to surround him with a positive work environment and people who will help him achieve his goal."
-- Carter (TNA Wrestling)
"Like all athletes, I knew this day would come when I would have to stand before that proverbial fork in the road. But I must admit that it's not until you're actually staring at the two diverging paths do you really grasp how impactful and painful this decision can be."
-- DE Michael Strahan's statement to fans regarding his potential retirement
"I went into this off-season with every intention of entering a 15th season with the Giants, the only team I've ever played for during my career. But I am human, and despite the images of me grimacing and tackling opposing quarterbacks and running backs, I have to face my mortality like anyone else."
"What's been most disappointing has been all of this nonsense that I'm holding out for more money ... Despite what some might believe there are those of us who make decisions that have nothing to do with money."
-- Strahan (Newsday)
"You can write [247 pounds] but it doesn't mean it's true."
-- Sapp, describing rotund Raiders wide receiver Mike Williams (Inside Bay Area)
"I go out less. Drink less. I do a whole lot of things less, because you don't ever want your grandparents to call you and ask, 'What were doing in the stairwell?'"
-- Vikings safety Dwight Smith, describing the changes he's made to his lifestyle after being found unclothed in an apartment stairwell with a female friend last year ( St. Paul Pioneer Press)
"He will treat you like a man until you don't treat him like one by doing things like being late. He will tell you about it. And if it happens a second time, he will cut the guy."
-- Cowboy quarterback Tony Romo, trying (and failing) to make Cowboys head coach Wade Phillips sound tough (San Antonio Express-News)
"In closing, to the fans of Buffalo, every guy has probably stood up here in all of these Hall of Fame jackets and said they probably have had the best fans in the world supporting them. I'm here to say that's hogwash. No fans are like my fans, like Bills fans. You were all out there freezing, spending hard earned money to cheer us on. You guys are the best."
-- Thurman Thomas, accepting his induction into the NFL Hall of Hame
"The system is flawed and when they fix the system I'll go back. I'm in the restaurant business. I'm busy. They don't need me anyway."
-- Restauranteur Mike Ditka, who is refusing to attend NFL Hall of Fame ceremonies until the league pension system is reformed (ESPN.com)
"I don't like guys fighting for someone to get hurt but I do like ... let's put it this way. If you're fighting about something, it means something to you. And that's really important. A lot of times, you'll find teams that are warm and fuzzy all the time. And in my opinion, those teams typically struggle in games because something's not important to them."
-- 49ers head coach Mike Nolan, expressing a very un-Herm Edwards-like view of training camp fights (Sacramento Bee)
"The worst is when you're not showing the exact amount of white you're supposed to be showing on your socks. If it's just a little more, or a little less, you get fined. Those are the things that drive us crazy.''
-- Packers cornerback Al Harris, expressing his frustration regarding the NFL's sock policy (SI.com)
"Just to give you a little insight into how my day was going, before the game I was drinking Red Bull and vodka and pouring Pop Rocks into my mouth, letting it foam out."
-- New Orleans resident "Heather," the woman of debatable attractiveness who wore the "F*** Da Eagles" t-shirt during the Saints-Eagles game last year. You can see more pictures of Heather -- including some in her new "F*** Jeff Feagles" t-shirt -- courtesy of Maxim here.
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46 comments, Last at 12 Aug 2007, 7:05pm by Yakuza Rich