1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Friday. “Baltimore Ravens-Watching QB History–Fearing QB History”

Posted by on December 13th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Baltimore–Watching History-Fearing History”

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Lamar Jackson continues to dazzle on the field.  His Baltimore Ravens continue to win too.

The Ravens quarterback  is headed to the MVP award in the NFL.  He’s hoping to take his team to the Super Bowl too.

He has just blown by Michael Vick’s single season quarterback rushing record, and continues to pile up impressive ‘double-doubles’ , throwing for over a 100-yards and rushing for 100-yards in the same game.  It’s happened a lot.

His all purpose yardage numbers are staggering and so are his touchdowns and the TDs he is responsible for in the John Harbaugh-led offense.

He’s big, he’s agile, he’s tough, he’s dynamic.

You watch the Ravens offense and you understand how impossible it is to defense Jackson as both a runner and thrower.

Then they play power-ball with their two heavy duty running backs Mark Ingram and Gus Edwards.

They have what other teams wish they had, two pass catching tight ends  Hayden Hurst  and Mark Andrews.

You watch the Ravens at the line of scrimmage, see the formations, see the shifts, see the guys in motion.

Are they throwing the ball, running the ball, is it a tailback coming at you, or is it a pass out in the flat, a pass down the sidelines, a throw over the middle.

Is it a receiver, is it a tight end, is it a running back.

Or is it your worst fear, Lamar Jackson’s play fakes,and he coming off the line of scrimmage running the ball.

Dynamic and diverse, he the quarterback, they-that offense.

You marvel at his extra gear speed running the ball.  You are fascinated by the trickery by the formations they show you.  You understand how much he has improved in just one year throwing the ball.  His accuracy has rocketed.  He throws lakers, touch passes, bullets and rainbow bombs.

In the big picture, Baltimore looks like a Super Bowl team.

But you should be concerned too, because we see a big picture  of scrambling quarterbacks and what happened to them.

Michael Vick had a good career till father time caught up with him.

The last two scrambling QBs, who caught our fancy, both got hurt, hurt badly, and have not returned to what they were.

Robert Griffin III had a spectacular first season, then suffered knee injuries with the Washington Redskins, running the football.  He never recaptured his explosiveness.

Colin Kaepeernick did tremendous things with the 49ers, but people forget all the surgeries that took him off the field, before he became embroiled in the national anthem controversies.

The same now with Cam Newton, so explosive running for Carolina, suffered shoulder injuries and surgery, then this year, a foot injury, requiring second ending surgery again.

Lamar Jackson is headed to the end zone, likely to pick up his NFL-MVP award, and maybe even a Super Bowl lTrophy.  But one must worry that Jackson puts himself at risk by running as much as he has the past two years.

We’re watching NFL quarterbacking history, but we should fear NFL history too.

Guys like Lamar Jackson can wind up like RG3-or-Cam Newton, and that’s not a good look.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports-Thursday “MLB Winter Meetings-Commissioner Speaks-I Respond”

Posted by on December 12th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

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“The Commissioner Talks–I Respond”

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The “State of Baseball Address” from Commissioner Rob Manfred, his plate full of issues, controversies, problems and feuds.

What he said to those of us in the Media.  What I think.

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Commissioner Rob Manfred-“State of League Address”

..Astros investigation-far from complete…will interview 60-people..review 76,000-Emails and Instagram messages…Not ready to talk about potential type of discipline….Most thorough investigation Commissioner’s office has ever done.

,,IF ALL THE INFORMATION LEAKING OUT IS TRUE, THAT A NUMBER OF CLUBS SUSPECTED CHEATING, AND IF THEY PROVED THERE WAS A SYSTEM OF SIGN STEALING, USING ELECTRONICS AND OTHER ILLEGAL MEANS, THEN THE ASTROS SHOULD PAY THE STEEPEST PRICE POSSIBLE FOR DAMAGING THE INTEGRITY OF THE GAME.  IT SHOULD INCLUDE A 1M FINE, A FROZEN SALARY CAP BUDGET, A BAN ON FREE AGENT SIGNINGS, AND STRIPPING OF DRAFT PICKS.  HEADS SHOULD ROLL TOO, FROM GM JEFF LUHNOW TO EVEN MANAGER AJ HINCH, IF THEY WERE IN ON IT.  INTEGRITY OF THE GAME IS UTMOST OF IMPORTANCE.  SEE THE HISTORICAL LESSONS IN SHOELESS JOE JACKSON AND PETE ROSE.

..Minor League Baseball…They publicly attacked a longtime partner…intentionally leaked information before we ever sat down to talk about ideas…There are ways to pay minor league players better without contracting teams.

..MLB IS PART RIGHT-PART WRONG, BUT THEY ARE GOING AT THIS FROM THE WRONG DIRECTION.  THIS IS ALL ABOUT OUT OF CONTROL COST CONTROLS.  THE YANKEES HAD 9-MINOR LEAGUE TEAMS AND NEARLY 300 PLAYERS UNDER CONTRACT LAST YEAR.  THE PADRES HAD 9-TEAMS AND IN EXCESS OF 220 UNDER MINOR LEAGUE CONTRACTS.  BASEBALL NEEDS TO STREAMLINE THE MINOR LEAGUE OPERATIONS, BUT SHUTTING DOWN 42-TEAMS AND FOLDING 4-CLASS A OR ROOKIE LEAGUES IS NOT THE WAY TO DO IT.  SHORTENING THE DRAFT DOES NOT MEAN YOU CANNOT FIND AN ALBERT PUJOLS IN THE 62ND ROUND.  THE MLB SURVEY THAT SHOWED 95% OF PLAYERS WHO ARE IN CLASS A-ROOKIE LEAGUE BALL NEVER GET TO THE MAJOR LEAGUES, MEANS THERE IS ALOT OF WASTE.  THAT MONEY NEEDS TO BE POURED INTO BETTER SALARIES FOR MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS.  SHORTEN THE MINOR LEAGUE SEASONS, YOU DON’T NEED TO PLAY 144-GAMES IN THE PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE FOR EXAMPLE.  FIND A SOLUTION TO THE GEOGRAPHY, THE TRAVEL ISSUES, THE NUTRITION AND STADIUM ISSUES.  LIMIT EACH TEAM TO 4-MINOR LEAGUE TEAMS AND POSSIBLY AN ENLARGED ROOKIE LEAGUE TRAINING CAMP TEAM.  BUT THIS CANNOT BE A MONEY GRAB FOR OWNERS.  THE CASH SAVED MUST BE REINVESTED TO THE PLAYERS IN A-AA-AAA WITH BETTER SALARIES.  YES BLUEFIELD, TRI CITIES, BINGHAMTON MAY HAVE TO GO AWAY.  NEGOTIATE THESE DEALS…DON’T MANDATE THEM.

..Free agency works..Teams have committed 2B in contracts since last December-including Harper-Machado-Strasburg-Cole and more..No need to change the system.

..THE SYSTEM IS CYCLICAL, THIS YEAR A BANNER YEAR OF FREE AGENTS, LAST YEAR A THIN CROP.  WHAT NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED IS THE FREE AGENT WINDOW, AND AGENTS WHO DRAG THE PROCESS OUT.  PUT A DEADLINE ON FREE AGENT SIGNINGS ON THE CALENDAR…DECEMBER 1ST TO JANUARY 15TH.  YOU CAN’T LIMIT CONTRACTS, BUT YOU CAN LIMIT WHEN PLAYERS CAN MOVE.  IT ALLOWS TEAMS A WINDOW POST FREE AGENCY TO EVALUATE MORE TRADES BEFORE CAMPS OPEN….CALL THE UNION AND SIT DOWN AND DISCUSS A ‘FLOOR TO SPENDING’ CONCEPT…THAT EVERY TEAM NEEDS TO SPEND A MINIMUM AMOUNT ON PLAYER SALARIES, ESPECIALLY WITH THE REVENUE SHARING THAT GOES ON….NOT EVERYONE CAN BE A 200M PAYROLL TEAM…BUT NO ONE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO OPERATE WITH A 50M OR 70M PAYROLL…A FLOOR TO SPENDING ALLOWS MORE MONEY TO MID-LEVEL FREE AGENTS AND IMPROVES THE SMALL MARKET TEAMS.  THE LUXURY TAX WORKS, ESPECIALLY IF THAT MONEY IS POURED BACK INTO SMALL MARKETS.

..MLB-Union in agreement on Opioid testing program

..I AGREE FIRST TIME OFFENDERS GO TO IMMEDIATE REHAB-COUNSELING, AND REPEAT POSITIVE TESTS MEAN SUSPENSIONS…IT SHOULD BE RANDOM TESTING A COUPLE OF TIMES IN SEASON AND ‘CAUSE’ TESTING IF NEED BE.  MUCH LIKE STEROIDS, THEN HGH, THIS IS BASEBALL’S NEW ISSUE.  HATS OFF TO THE UNION FOR WANTING TO HELP PLAYERS.  I AM SURE SOMEWHERE DOWN THE ROAD, DISCUSSION OF MEDICAL MARIJUANA WILL BE PART OF THE CONVERSATION TOO.

..All MLB teams will have protective netting down all baselines.

..PROTECT THE PAYING PUBLIC REGARDLESS OF THE COST.

..MLB Draft moving to Omaha right before College World Series

..A GIMMICK NO DOUBT, BUT IT WILL BE NICE NOT TO HAVE IT A DISTRACTION TO THE COLLEGE WORLD SERIES.  MLB NEEDS TO DEVELOP A PLAN SO THAT THE TOP 100 PLAYERS CAN GO THRU MLB-WIDE PHYSICAL EXAMS PRIOR TO THE DRAFT.  THAT MEDICAL INFORMATION NEEDS TO BE MADE AVAILABLE IF YOU ARE PUTTING SO MUCH MONEY INTO GUARANTEED CONTRACTS WITH THESE HIGH DRAFT PICKS.

..We will invoke new rules for next year
(:20) pitch clock…26 Man Roster…15-Day DL for pitchers..3-Batter minimum for pitchers..28 Man Roster in September.

..PACE OF PLAY STILL SEEMS TO BE AN ISSUE, BUT YOU CANNOT PUT RULES IN THAT IMPACT STRATEGY…THE THREE BATTER RULE SEEMS ABSURD…TRYING TO BAN THE SHIFT SEEMS WRONG…I LIKE THE ROSTER UPGRADES, THE LIMIT TO SEPTEMBER CALLUPS, AND CHANGING THE DL-RULES AGAIN…THE PITCH CLOCK-DON’T THINK THAT’S AS BIG A PROBLEM AS DELAYS FOR 9-PITCHING CHANGES IN GAMES.

..Rawlings Baseball…Study shows some manufacturing variations led to different level of seams on balls-impacting aerodynamics..balls were not juiced.

NOW YOU TELL ME THE BALLS MADE IN COSTA RICA WERE DIFFERENT THAN BALLS MADE IN THE US OR AT SOME OTHER INTERNATIONAL PLANT THAT RAWLINGS-MLB USES….BAD QUALITY CONTROL FOR SURE….IMPACTING THE RECORD BOOK, HELPING HOME RUN HITTERS, HURTING PITCHERS, DOESN’T SEEM TO BE VERY FAIR.  MLB OWNS RAWLINGS NOW, SO FIX IT..

..Oakland A’s…Committed to keep team in new stadium in the market
..Tampa Bay..Rays locked into Tropicana Lease thru 2027.

..WHY CAN’T BASEBALL DO WHAT THE NFL HAS DONE, BECOME BUSINESS PARTNERS WITH THE TEAMS AND ITS COMMUNITIES…CALL THE NFL ON PARK AVENUE AND DETERMINE NOW THE NFL G-3 FUND WORKS TO HELP TEAMS BUILD NEW STADIUMS…DEVELOP A REVENUE SHARE ASPECT THAT HELPS CITIES CO-FUND STADIUMS…..I BELIEVE MONTREAL AND CHARLOTTE AS POTENTIAL MARKETS SHOULD BE EXPLORED.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports-Wednesday “Aztecs-Bowl Game-Good Time”

Posted by on December 11th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Aztecs Football–Bowl Time”

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San Diego State is headed to its 10th bowl game in a row, this time facing Central Michigan of the Mid-American Conference.

The Aztecs came home (9-3) this season.  The Chippewas went to the MAC championship game, losing to Miami of Ohio, ending up (8-5).

Old school coaches face each other.  Rocky Long-vs-Jim McElwain.  Long has been spectacular on Montezuma Mesa.  McElwain rebuilt a (1-11) team into a bowl team in one year.  Both have world of experience.

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Rocky Long’s comments”

..Excited about going to bowl game in New Mexico.
..Short period of time to prepare to play on 12/21
..Central Michigan has had great turnaround season

..Jim McElwain-great success at Colorado State, got the job at Florida
..Took CMU from (1-11) to the MAC title game.
..On film lots of formations on offense, strong on defense with 7-man front
..Hard for us to run the ball
..They put in new system when he got there…finally got it going mid-year
..Scored 40-points or more 5-games second half of season
..Developed group that now knows the system and executing well

..Our team always excited to play another game
..Like going to a different bowl games
..We have played a lot of MAC  teams..they play good football
..CMU very physical up
..Excited about going to new place-experience new things

..Wanted to be in game vs Boise State…have to let it go..just like life
..I found out this year, outside incentives don’t mean a damn thing
..It adds stress and pressure…some people handle it well…some don’t.
..Just let kids play the game

..Cycle-seniors leaving program…alot of fond memories…gave us lot of success
..Our seniors are our leaders…did a great job leading this group

..Kids playing last game…kids excited about what future holds for them
..These kids been playing since they were 8-and-10…it will hit them
..It hits them during the game…they can get sad.
..I was sad when I was pulled out for the final game at New Mexico

..Long layoff-get lazy-rusty….how sharp we are when game starts is the question

..Speed of the game is a problem when you have been off a couple of weeks.

..Disappointed last year loss to Ohio..players didn’t want to play in bowl game
..Proud way seniors led this group since 2nd semester last January

..Gave Jesse Matthews-WR-awarded scholarship next year-he deserves it.

..I have special feelings about New Mexico…love the place..the people..the culture
..Trying to let players know how special New Mexico is
..Only ones who offered me a scholarship-that’s how I went there

..4-game redshirt rule…NCAA may change it…I had answer to problem
..Put a guy on scholarship, here to play football-get college degree…give them 5-years.
…End restrictions how and when they play.
..No waivers-no redshirts-no injury redshirts…Have 5-to-play 5
..You still have 85-grants per year…Not spend additional money

..NCAA transfer portal rule…don’t think there is tampering going on..
..Allow athletes avenue to move on if not happy.
..Not against it…but a lot of names are showing up in the portal.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Tuesday “Baseball–Winter Meetings-A Wild First Day”

Posted by on December 10th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

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“Baseball–Winter Meetings-Wild First Day”

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The Winter Baseball Meetings are in high gear in the Gaslamp Quarter.

Free Agent signings, mega trades, and some controversial showdowns coming.

The Washington Nationals started Monday’s opening day with the signing of Stephen Strasburg, the World Series pitching hero, to a (7Y-245M) contract, the highest salary package and average salary for a pitcher in history.

It’s not over, for within hours came reports that the other big free agent, Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole, was prepared to leave and possibly head to the Yankees or the Angels for what is likely to be a new record high (250M) package.

Still out there will be the Giants-Madison Bumgarner, seeking 25M per year, and Nationals 3rd baseman Anthony Rendon, a likely 33M a season bat to somebody’s lineup.

We await to see who throws bargaining chips on the table to start the trade market.

The strangest rumblings in the hallways at the Manchester Grand Hyatt are that the Cubs might be willing to tear their top heavy salaried roster apart with a series of deals that could include star 3B-Kris Bryant.

Once this domino falls, then the other deals fall into place.

Joc Peterson of the Dodgers..the Pirates moving Starlin Marte, the rumored move of Milwaukee closer Josh Vader, and the Padres efforts to shop, move, dump Austin Hedges and Will Myers.

The contracts given to the marquee free agents continue to escalate, winter by winter.

I’d say it’s shocking anyone would give a 31-year old pitcher, like Strasburg, a 7-year contract, but then again, MLB is awash in money from its TV contracts.  And if pitchers go down, odds are some of the salaries are covered by insurance policies.

Think back to yesteryear, when the Steinbrenner’s threw wild money at free agents every winter.  We thought the 217M package David Price signed with the Red Sox was absurd.

People were aghast when all this started with Andy Messersmith, Catfish Hunter and Wayne Garland.  That is when the back in the day dollars were as high as 700,000 a year.  Those were pennies on the dollar to what Strasburg just got.

But this winter meeting session is different than the last couple of years, when the delayed signings of Shohei Ohtani by the Angels, or last year’s mess with Craig Kimbrel and Dallas Keuchel, held up all the other deals.

This started early with Yasmani Grandal, going to the White Sox, and has escalated since late last week.   Atlanta moved quickly to get Giants closer Will Smith, then Cubs starter Cole Hamels.  The Reds landed 3B-Mike Moustakas, and Texas signed Jordan Lyles-Kyle Gibson for the back end of their rotation.

Now Strasburg signs so quickly, it should open up the flood gates for lots of other deals.

The bidding isn’t over, but the trades are to come next, maybe by nightfall..

The ‘Shopping Spree’ is now to replace the ‘Spending Spree’.  A fun time to watch the dealings of big market to small market teams.

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1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Monday “NFL Weekend Worth Commenting On”

Posted by on December 9th, 2019  •  0 Comments  • 

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“A Football Weekend Worth Commenting On”

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CHARGERS…..A win is a win even if it is against a deplorable team like the Jacksonville Jaguars, who have seemingly quit on their head coach.  You ever seen so many guys running open on pass patterns?  Giving up 80-yards in a 2-play sequence, 84-yards over 3-plays and 73-yards on 3-snaps should merit a housecleaning in Jaguarland.  Great performance by RB-Austin Ekeler, his (213) all purpose yardage day should merit him a big pay raise.  Joey Bosa had another strong day with a couple of sacks, a pressure and tackle for loss, as he builds out a career season on a team going nowhere.

RAMS…Backs to the wall, they came up big time tearing apart Seattle at the LA Coliseum.  Suddenly the explosiveness that was missing much of the season, re-emerged, probably because Robert Woods, Cooper Krupp, Gerald Everett, Josh Reynolds, Tyler Higbee and Todd Gurley seem healthy.  The defense, which has been shoved around a lot this season, showed up with attitude and an edge, and pressure on Russell Wilson all night.  At times Pete Carroll seemed stunned with the look on his face.

49ers…That was some explosive day in the shootout win in New Orleans.  A 500-yard plus day on offense, just enough to withstand the 5TD day of Drew Brees.  First time the Niners defense looked human, and not dominant, but San Francisco won.

NEW ENGLAND…They may be (10-3) but they don’t look like vintage Patriots football any longer.  Tom Brady has no offensive skill help.  No quality tight ends.  Not many playmakers at wide receiver aside from the mighty mite Juliah Edelman and no running game at all.

KANSAS CITY….Went into Foxboro, jumped the Patriots early, and hung on, snapping New England’s 21-game home winning streak.  Patrick Mahomes does not have all his weapons right now with all these nagging injuries, and the defense is leaky, but they have clinched the AFC-West.

CLEVELAND…Fighting for their playoff life, and maybe fighting to keep their coach, they battered the bad Bengals, but the stench coming out of the locker-room about dysfunction in the offense, players-vs-coaches clashes, and the public second guessing of coach Freddie Kitchens means all is not well on the Lakefront.

BALTIMORE…That was some defensive street fight in Buffalo but they won and that was what was important.  The Ravens defense choked off Josh Allen, the young Bills quarterback, and Lamar Jackson did just enough to guide his team to a critical road win.

BUFFALO…The Bills play hard for Sean McDermott, the defense is so rugged, but they may be a year away yet with the young QB-Josh Allen.  Another draft will help that out.

JACKSONVILLE…If the Bengals weren’t in the league, you’d vote for the Jaguars as being the worst team in the league.  Five straight blowout losses in a row.  All this from a team put together by legendary Super Bowl coach Tom Coughlin.  Interesting to see if ownership fires him, plus the loser of a coach Doug Marrone.

DALLAS….Waiting for the end of the season and the ouster of Jason Garrett, something is really wrong at Valley Ranch.  The kid offensive coordinator Kellen Moore’s play calling leaves a lot to be desired.  How do you have all that talent and sit there with a (6-7) record.

HOUSTON..Go explain this, playing at home, with everything on the line, coming off a big win, the Texans lose at home to troubled Denver and their kid QB-Drew Lock.

DETROIT…This isn’t working out, Another Bill Belichick assistant, failing as a head coach .Matt Patrica’s Lions, without QB-Matthew Stafford, out with that back fracture, are not competitive, and are now (3-9-1).  Don’t know if they’d fire him in his 2nd year, but they are not very good under his leadership.

CINCINNATI….3-weeks left before QB-Andy Dalton gets to leave as a free agent in the offseason…this (1-12) mess in his rear view mirror.

PITTSBURGH…Some coaching job by Mike Tomlin, injuries, suspensions, rookies, ailing QBs, and they are now (8-5).  Who could have thought that when they were (1-4) in September.

TENNESSEE….Some turnaround for QB-Ryan Tannehill.  He is now (6-1) as a starter since replacing Marcus Mariota, who will likely depart as a free-agent.

NY GIANTS….Clocking ticking towards Pat Shurmur’s firing at the end of the season.  Doubt Eli Manning, starting on Monday night, can save him.

ATLANTA….Poor Matt Ryan, having to do it all himself, since the Falcons have so many injuries around him.

CAROLINA…Unfair firing of head coach Ron Rivera, by new owner David Tepper.  Started (6-2) and (4-2) the last two years, then Cam Newton got hurt each of last two seasons, and ten fell apart.  And this is Rivera’s fault.

ARIZONA…Miserable (3-9-1) season for the team around QB-Kyler Murray.  Interesting that GM Steve Keim makes statements about looking forward to rebuilding the defense.  His track record isn’t good, he might not be there for next season.

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