Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

Most Recent FO Features


» Futures: Josh Rosen

UCLA's quarterback clearly has the talent to succeed as an NFL starter. The question is whether or not he can avoid enough mistakes to become a superstar.

21 Aug 2008

The Week In Quotes: August 21, 2008

compiled by Vince Verhei


"It's pretty bad when J.T. O'Sullivan is outdoing you."

-- An anonymous NFL scout after Aaron Rodgers' poor showing in a preseason contest against San Francisco

"I'm just glad we're not in that situation."

-- Another unnamed scout, from "a team with an established quarterback"

"He had pretty good time. He was looking downfield, but it was like he wasn't really seeing."

-- Yet another nameless scout, referring to Rodgers' four sacks in 20 dropbacks

"Garbage. Awful, awful, awful, awful. We're not scaring anyone and we feel like we have an offense that should scare anybody."

-- The decidedly not-anonymous Donald Driver, on Green Bay's offensive ineptitude

"God, is he bad."

-- A scout from Parts Unknown on Green Bay nickelback Jarrett Bush, who was beaten for completions of 27 and 22 yards, appeared to be at fault for a blown coverage that allowed a 59-yard touchdown, and was also called for a pass interference penalty in the end zone to set up a first-and-goal (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)


"In principle, it's agreed to."

-- Rams running back Steven Jackson on the new contract he had been seeking

"We just had two different ways -- how we were thinking, where we wanted to go on a contract. And the Rams, the way they were thinking. Their philosophy. That's where it came to a standstill."

-- Jackson, placing the blame for his holdout at the feet of the Rams' "philosophy"

"Things really got hot and heavy (Wednesday), and that's when I booked the flight. When you're talking about this kind of money, there's going to be some kind of gripes and concerns. In negotiations, no one gets 100 percent what they want, so it was just the two of us coming to an agreement on some things."

-- Jackson

"Especially for a running back."

-- Jackson on the brief careers of NFL players, particularly those at his position

"It's definitely something I'm proud of and I can live with."

-- Jackson on his new deal

"I've been working out, keeping a low profile -- staying away from sports radio and talk and all that kind of stuff. I was in Vegas the entire time -- at mom's and dad's house, taking in their love."

-- Jackson, with information on his recent whereabouts that must have made Rams officials throw up in their mouths until they got to that last part (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)


"At the beginning of camp, I hadn't asked for a trade. As of recently, we did."

-- Cardinals wide receiver Anquan Boldin


-- Boldin, when asked if he believes his standoff with Arizona can be resolved

"It's a tough situation, especially when you come into a working environment. But my job is to stay professional. I'm going to do what I'm supposed to do."

-- Boldin, who is still practicing with the team, on what practices are like

"If I'm not going to be treated fairly, if my hard work and loyalty isn't going to be rewarded here, then let me go somewhere where it's going to be rewarded. That's how I feel."

-- Boldin

"Honestly, I think it should be completely separated. I think that's why we have a department that deals with that."

-- Boldin, after implying that negotiations with the team fell apart after coach Ken Whisenhunt got involved

"We've been communicating. If communicating is talking, that's what we have been doing at practice. As we go forward, I don't know. I don't foresee anything changing. If it does, it's in his court."

-- Whisenhunt, on reports that he and Boldin had not been communicating (NFL.com)


"They saw I was disgruntled, they saw that me sitting to the side and watching and we know it wasn't going to work out well for either of us."

-- Former Falcons wide receiver Joe Horn, whose wish was granted when the team released him on Tuesday

"We made the right decision. They allowed me to go and I'm just happy to know that I'm leaving with good character."

-- Horn

"I talked to Smitty [coach Mike Smith] and I talked to [general manager] Thomas Dimitroff. We shook hands and we wished each other the best."

-- Horn

"Arthur Blank is one of the biggest reasons I came to Atlanta, him and Michael Vick. Michael Vick had a lot to do with that. By Mike Vick being incarcerated, I knew my career wouldn't go that well in Atlanta."

-- Horn

"I'm disappointed that Joe didn't get a chance to compete because of his (hamstring) injury in training camp and because he didn't choose to come to [offseason workouts]. So he didn't get a chance to compete. We're going to move forward. We feel very comfortable with the receiving corps that we have. I wish Joe the best of luck as he moves on."

-- Falcons coach Mike Smith

"It's a business so I understand how things were handled. What if some of their receivers went down? They would have had me around to help. I knew that and understood."

-- Horn, explaining why he doesn't bear a grudge against the team for making him wait for his release

"If I couldn't play I would retire, but I know I can still play."

-- Horn (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)


"I talked to Coach Smith about that before and that's exciting to go get out there right away. We're going to have a good week of preparation and hopefully play well Friday night."

-- Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan on his first professional start this weekend against Tennessee

"We want to give everybody an opportunity to work with the first unit and that's still the plan."

-- Falcons coach Mike Smith, who started Chris Redman against Jacksonville and Joey Harrington against Indianapolis, and will likely start D.J. Shockley in the team's preseason finale against Baltimore

"I really was impressed with the way he handled the two-minute situation before the half last Saturday night. He did throw the interception but he moved well in the pocket. He avoided some pressure and he got rid of the ball. He's got to make plays. That's what really counts in this league, making plays and doing what everyone expects him to do. He obviously has the ability to do that, now he just has to go do it."

-- Falcons right tackle Tyson Clabo on Ryan's performance against Indianapolis last weekend (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)


"I never really got comfortable. We just weren't playing real smart to start the game."

-- Former Bears starting quarterback Rex Grossman, after going 9-of-15 for 74 yards with an interception and a sack against Seattle

"Not really pleased with what many of our offensive guys did early. We didn't get a lot done. Rex was a part of that."

-- Bears coach Lovie Smith, foreshadowing a switch in his quarterback depth chart

"I don't know any more than you all do. I thought I executed the offense all right, and the bottom line is we just need to find more ways to score points."

-- Former Bears backup quarterback Kyle Orton, after the Seattle game (Chicago Sun-Times)

"You [media] guys can get negative about quite a bit of stuff, but this is the preseason. In some areas we've done well. In some areas we have struggled. But all and all, as a unit, I think we're getting better. And I think we're really going to show that in the next few weeks."

-- Orton, shortly after being named starting quarterback

"We take a lot of things into consideration. But in the end, it comes down to a gut feeling you have. I feel good about Kyle leading our team."

-- Smith, whose decisions on whether Orton or Grossman would start have been made via gut feelings, coin flips, and "no rhyme or reason"

"Is it over? Nothing is ever over at any position. We don't name any guys starters for a lifetime."

-- Smith, ensuring a fun, fun season in Chicago one way or another

"We're going to be a good offense."

-- Orton (Chicago Tribune)


"I was scared to come through. It's good to be back."

-- Former Titans quarterback Steve McNair, returning to the team's facilities for the first time since a messy split in the 2006 offseason

"This organization has been great for me, they gave me an opportunity to play 11 years and take care of my family. I still don't have any animosity toward this organization, especially the coaching staff. The coaching staff is like family."

-- McNair

"A business decision."

-- McNair, describing his departure from the Titans

"I scratched mine. If I get the itch I go ahead and scratch it."

-- McNair, putting any thoughts of a comeback to rest

"You always want to kind of go out on a high note, but at the same time when you're as competitive as Brett [Favre] is, and you've got the ability and the mindset to continue to play, he just wanted to continue to play. He's got the opportunity with the Jets and he's happy and I'm happy for him."

-- McNair on another quarterback who underwent a messy NFL divorce

"My career is over and this is a great opportunity for me to give back and help more kids here and in the state of Mississippi. It should be a lot of fun."

-- McNair, on his Oct. 31 retirement ceremony (The Tennesseean)


"I just think he needs to play, and he's shown he can play. He had a good game last week and needs some more."

-- Cowboys head coach Wade Phillips on Adam Jones, who will make his first start since Dec. 31, 2006, this Friday against Houston

"I'm just happy to be out here competing and I'm getting a chance. Whoever comes out there, I'm ready to compete. Let's see what happens on Friday."

-- Jones (Dallas Morning News)


"Two, one, I'm not sure where they are right now."

-- Dolphins coach Tony Sparano on his top quarterbacks, Chad Pennington and Chad Henne, either of whom may start the regular season opener.

"It's hard to tell. Chad [Pennington] hasn't had a lot of work right now. But I feel really comfortable with Chad Henne and my evaluation of where he is. I think he's developed a bunch since the start of rookie camp. All of a sudden the game is starting to slow down, and he's playing a little bit more comfortable in the pocket, starting to see the field a little clearer and making some faster decisions out there in critical situations. This guy is really showing me great poise."

-- Sparano

"If he's the best guy, I'll play him."

-- Sparano, referring to Henne (South Florida Sun-Sentinel)


"Same side of the body, and same leg, but not the same injury."

-- Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, comparing his current unknown injury to the injury to his right ankle during last postseason

"I spent some time this weekend getting treatment on it, and hoping that it responds quickly like it usually does."

-- Brady

"It's going to be up to Coach, what he wants to do. I think he's been coaching long enough to know that the first game in September is the most important game for us."

-- Brady, on whether he would play Friday night against Philadelphia (Boston Globe)


"I'm giving Jacoby [Jones] every chance I can to work out of this and clean these mistakes up. At the same time, our team has to know what direction we're going if somebody's back there putting the ball on the ground, (so) David and Andre are getting a lot of work this week."

-- Texans coach Gary Kubiak on Jacoby Jones, who has struggled with fielding punts lately (Houston Chronicle)


"That is my goal, to be ready for that first game ... it has been my goal all along. Hopefully it continues to progress up until that point."

-- Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, conceding that he may not be ready to play the team's regular season opener against the Bears on Sept. 7

"I've had a tough month. It's truly been a challenge for me, certainly something totally different than I've had to ever experience. Just constant rehab."

-- Manning, who has started every game for the Colts since he was drafted in 1998 (Indianapolis Star)


"New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has won more or less than two Super Bowls?"

-- Matt Gallant, host of NFL Cheerleader Playoffs on NFL Network, asking a question during a trivia game


-- Catherine, Tampa Bay Buccaneers cheerleader, getting the question wrong


"He's like a bowling ball with butcher knives on it."

-- Chiefs coach Herm Edwards on rookie running back Dantrell Savage (Kansas City Star)

Thanks to Kevin McKinley for the contribution this week. Send in your favorites (including those you think we may have missed) to quotes-at-footballoutsiders.com, and please remember to include a link to your source.

Posted by: Vincent Verhei on 21 Aug 2008

43 comments, Last at 22 Aug 2008, 6:38pm by The Hypno-Toad


by Nathan (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:00am

Immediate disqualification on Herm since he bogarted that 'bowling ball with butcher knives' line from Maurice Jones-Drew...

Then again, does Herm even realize who Maurice Jones-Drew is? I mean, the guy did score against them last year, but I'm not so sure Herm remembers all that far back.

by Aaron N (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:13am

Saying O'Sullivan 'out-did' Rodgers is a joke. Up until the Packers pulled Woodson and Harris, O'Sullivan was 3 for 11 with an interception.

by AmBentDonkey (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:14am

Warren Sapp used the bowling ball with butcher knives line about Dwayne Robertson before he was drafted as well. So I guess being a knife wielding bowling ball gives you a 50% probability of success as an NFL player. Good luck to Dantrell Savage, though I suspect he'll be cut next week.

by Led (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:17am

Jones-Drew was not the first usage of the "bowling ball with buther knives" line. It was used (I think by then-GM Terry Bradway) to describe DeWayne Robertson shortly after he was drafted. I assume the phrase goes back farther than that...

by brian (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:43am

Herm, how do you keep your job? I ask myself that question every year.

The Rams needed to pay Steven Jackson his money. Sitting in Vegas, eating his momma's food can't possibly keep him in good condition, no matter how much he worked out.

by James, London (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:55am

"“We’re going to be a good offense.”

I think Neckbeard's been on the Jack Daniels again...

by Nathan (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:58am

I'm not saying that MJD was the first, I was honestly just wondering if Herm is aware that there are 31 other teams in the league.

I imagine that he goes to practice everyday and asks himself "why did we change colors from green to red?"

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 11:59am


Is he saying "we're going to be a good offense" straight up, or is "compared to other chicago bears offences" implied?

by BOOM!ImChrishHanshen (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 12:14pm

Bad quarterbacks make for good quotes.

by dbt (Bears fan) (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 12:32pm

Orton doesn't say when.

by Temo (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 12:42pm

New category for a new season: "This Week in Chicago Quarterbacking"

Make it happen!

by Becephalus (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:06pm

You realize a cheerleader not knowing anything about football might be an indication she just does not care about football instead of an indication of intellectual deficit.

I have known one cheerleader over the years, she was very bright, and could absolutely care less about football, it was just a way to make some money on the weekend during school.

In fact i would guess that as a group the cheerleaders who would get that question right might be dumber than the ones who would get it wrong.

Just a hunch.

by BOOM!ImChrishHanshen (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:20pm

Two truths about NFL cheerleaders:

1. They work hundreds of hours during the year on rehearsals, routines, working out, and games.
2. They get paid squat: "Dallas Cowboys
Cheerleaders are paid $50.00 per home game" plus a bit in personal appearance fees.

Ergo, doing it to "make some money on the weekend during school" sounds like the rationalization of another similar, more tawdry part-time job.

(I'm not sayin, I'm just sayin)>

by chucky chainsaw (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:32pm

re 12: its not that she got it wrong, its HOW she got it wrong. after i read that quote i laughed my ass off.

by Stickler (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:38pm

RE: #12
If you read the quote carefully, you'll see that the deficit isn't in her football knowledge -- it's that she answered an over/under question with a true/false response.

No need to get defensive about cheerleaders. I'm sure some are smart and some are dumb. Their job is unrelated to their intellectual capacity.

by Aaron N (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:39pm

Um, guys? She answered a 'less or more' question with the word 'false'. She's an idiot.

by Becephalus (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 1:40pm

My bad for not reading very carefully!

by Harris (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 2:06pm

Sure, but at least strippers they have Anna Nicole Smith to look up to (dimwit with big hooters nabs elderly billionaire who has the decency to die shortly after marriage). What do cheerleaders have to aspire to? They can't even fraternize with players in hopes of trapping one with a paternity suit.

by MilkmanDanimal (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 2:42pm

Oh no. A cheerleader who may not be the sharpest tool in the shed. This completely and utterly changes my perception of what cheerleaders are there for.

by Joe T. (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 2:49pm

Why on earth would anyone watch a television show about NFL cheerleaders with the volume on anyway?

by Tom D (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 2:57pm

Re 20:


Actually some of the cheerleaders are pretty good at the trivia. Last year on of the questions was which two teams don't have logos on their helmets, and I was having a tough time thinking of them myself, but the cheerleader got it right.

by panthersnbraves (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 3:22pm

21) Browns and .... {dang}

"Are you smarter than a cheerleader?"

I'd tune in every week.

by Joe T. (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 3:43pm

"Last year one of the questions was which two teams don’t have logos on their helmets?"

False...er...wait, the answer is B. No, no, no...U.S. Americans who don't have maps. Thats it, thats my final answer...I think.

(link in name if you don't know what the hell I'm talking about).

by S (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 3:50pm

In principle, it's agreed to."

That's the most Herm-like quote from someone other than Herm this year. In fact, that whole Steven Jackson thread is pretty solid.

by Travis (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 4:10pm

Re: 22

Browns, and either the Bengals and/or Rams, depending on whether the pattern counts as a logo.

by pr9000 (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 4:12pm

Seriously, what's the other team with no logo on its helmet? Everyone has something ... except for the Bengals, but that's not quite "not a logo," is it?

by S (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 4:31pm

The Steelers are missing a logo on one side.

by Some Guy (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 4:55pm

If anyone is looking up to Anna Nicole Smith, they clearly stopped reading the story half-way through.

by Derek (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 5:12pm

Although, to be fair to the cheerleader, the question wasn't exactly phrased the best way.

"...Tom Brady has one won more or less than 2 Super bowls?"

How about, Has Tom Brady won more or less than 2 Super bowls?

Much better

by sam! (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 6:33pm


Your question is literally a true/false question... how about "Has Tom Brady won more than two Super Bowls?"

by JR (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 7:13pm

Re the cheerleader. If you read it as a true/false question and stopped watching the 2001 playoffs when Walt Coleman went under the hood, her answer looks good.

by MC2 (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 7:47pm

#18: "What do cheerleaders have to aspire to?"

Making headlines by making out with each other in public bathrooms, of course.

by Bugs Meany (not verified) :: Thu, 08/21/2008 - 9:41pm

Typical, another election year, another dangling Chad problem in Florida.

by Vincent Verhei :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 12:30am

Typical, another election year, another dangling Chad problem in Florida.

Dammit! Where were you when I was writing this last night?

by Matt Weiner (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 8:14am

Maybe she thought he won exactly two?

by Matt Weiner (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 8:15am

Oh wait, 31 already said that funnier.

by The Hypno-Toad (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 12:22pm

Dammit! What is the other team without a logo? I mean, no matter what other team it is, I think this is going to lead to some pretty fine hair-splitting about what constitutes a logo. And I really enjoy a good semantics debate, particularly on this site.

by theosu (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 1:13pm

Ah, but what if Brady had won exactly two super bowls? Then she would have been right!

by Fred Bellemore (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 2:15pm

Regarding the Cheerleader:

First off, "fewer" should have been used, not "less" --- number of super bowls won is discrete...This made the question confusing to me...And in fact, makes the statement false.

Second, as mentioned in #29, "has" should definitely be out front...Again, more confusing...

Third, as mentioned in #35 and #38, if she thought the answer was "two", then what else should she have answered?...'Exactly'?...Not really...

Anyway, to me, not knowing the fewer-less distinction is a worse intellectual gaffe than the true-false problem

by hjt (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 3:10pm

re #37

see #27

by mattfwood (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 5:39pm

34 - Vince, if the mere mention of the name Chad coupled with anything in South Florida doesn't immediately set off a lightbulb regarding the bad joke about hanging chads, then you should probably turn in your union card.

by Vincent Verhei :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 6:02pm

Sorry. My humor detector is set to bad sitcoms, not bad politics.

by The Hypno-Toad (not verified) :: Fri, 08/22/2008 - 6:38pm

40 - Really? That was the answer they gave on the show? I thought 27 was just offering that up as a possibility, or as a "this fact fits into this conversation" sort of thing. I suppose I don't know the actual phrasing of the question when they asked the cheerleaders... It could have been a "one of them is not a nickel" phrasing, making it more a riddle than trivia. But if the question was What 2 NFL teams don't have logos on their helmets? And the answer included the Steelers... Well then, that's just stupid. It's like claiming I don't have a left hand because I don't have one on the right side of my body.