Tom Coughlin burns the Jets

Winning a Super Bowl can allow a NFL head coach a little bit of candor in his public statements.  Winning two super bowls allows a coach a ton.

New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin took full advantage of that yesterday when he couldn’t resist taking a jab at the “cross-town” rival New York Jets and their recent player acquisitions (ie: Tebowmania in NYC). Here’s what Coughlin had to say about the Jets recent acquisitions:

“You know who won the Super Bowl, you know who the world champions are,” he said. “Whether we’re on the front page every day or not, it’s not that important. New Yorkers know.”

Ouch, little bit of a burn there or what? The best part about that statement is that it pretty much rings true. The Giants go about their business, generally not making too many crazy headlines (minus Brandon Jacobs i guess) and they just go and win two Super Bowls in five years. The loudest Giants in the media are ex-Giants Tiki Barber and Michael Strahan.

Meanwhile, over in Jets country, you’ve got Rex Ryan flapping his gums every other week, talking about winning Super Bowls like he is a fat and sober Joe Namith, showcasing the entire team on HBO’s Hard Knocks, making free agent signing splashes that, all combined together…gets them essentially nowhere. Nowhere, that is, if you consider your season to be a bust if a Super Bowl ring was not won.

Anyway, it is nice to see Coughlin finally give up a little of the “hard ass” persona in his interviews with the media. Generally this is a guy who can make Bill Belichick look like charming. Maybe he’s finally getting soft in his golden years?

If so, I am loving it.

The one where Florio manufactures a controversy

Devotees to this website will quickly learn that we cast a skeptical eye to our fellow writers who seem to relish each and every opportunity to enhance their own celebrity and become yet another “personality” of the Trent-Dilfer-Mark-Schlereth cast. Thus, Profootballtalk’s evil dwarf and high school yearbook nerd Mike Florio, who I reluctantly admit has been right about a few things, (just as stopped watches go) is doing his damnedest to create a controversy out of Peyton Manning’s decision to pull rank with former Denver Broncos quarterback Frank Tripucka and wear his formerly retired number 18 when he begins the 2012 NFL season under the knife center for the Broncos.

No fewer then three posts appeared in a single day criticizing Manning for donning the retired number on PFT. It’s not that Florio doesn’t have a point, he does, but athletes are superstitious people (Michael Jordan abandoned number 45 by like the third quarter of his first game back) and Elway would have probably sold his first-born into the Sierra Leone diamond mining trade just to get rocket-lazer-arm in Denver for next season.

Most likely to annoy me into posting this article:

If it goes against everything Manning believes in, then he should have politely declined. I’m sure if Manning had been wearing No. 7 since 1998, John Elway would “really want” Manning to wear Elway’s number, too. That doesn’t make it right.


Indeed, it flies in the face of the entire concept of retiring numbers. If a number is retired, it’s retired. The person for whom the number was retired should have no say in the matter; part of the honor is that the topic of unretiring the number should never be broached.

It’s the Catalina wine mixer! People have literally killed to be in this position!

In this case, the skids were greased last week, when reporters began contacting Tripucka and asking him about whether the number would be dusted off for Manning. What would anyone expect Tripucka to say? ”No, it’s mine . . . and while we’re on the topic get off my lawn”?

To his credit, Tripucka acted charitably. But he never should have been placed in that position.

Fair point. Then again, Tripucka probably saw the Patriots game.

In the end, the Broncos are the custodians of the team’s numbers.

So then why do you even care? As soon as Manning goes down he’ll go under the knife again, retire for good, and 18 in Denver will belong to Tripucka again. Does this really matter?

And to those of you who think that Tripucka has manipulated this situation merely to get his name back into circulation after nearly 50 years of obscurity, keep two things in mind. First, he’s 84. Second, he has Alzheimer’s.

Has anyone said that? Also, although it is truly unfortunate it’s not like he’s giving Manning power of attorney, or buying volcano insurance from Manning. Also, the insinuation that the Broncos or Manning are taking advantage of Tripucka in his current state is deeply misleading since Mrs. Tripucka says her husband would feel honored.

Manning is going to wear a number for the Broncos for a couple seasons (if he’s supremely lucky) and then it will come down again. If nobody seems to care, then why do you care so much?

Where’s your messiah now, McDaniels? He’s off writing a book instead of using his powers to vanquish the Broncos’ rivals and save his coach’s job. Selfish bastard.

Tim Tebow has already accomplished everything humanly possible. There’s nothing left to do but tell the story of how he became the backup for the Denver Broncos.

Former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow is working on an inspirational memoir.

Tebow is collaborating with Nathan Whitaker on “Through My Eyes,” scheduled to come out in April. HarperCollins announced the book Monday.

Read the story about how he led the Gators to the SEC Championship in his last season. Be amazed at the miracles he pulled in the Pacific. Did you know that every Filipino baby he circumscised became a saint and can stop bullets with their minds? Oh to have foreskin again.

Tebow’s autobiography could start a disturbing trend among young professional athletes in this country. England has seen several soccer stars write autobiographies before they hit the age of 30. As one might imagine, their books are as empty and vapid as their interviews and play for England. They’ve achieved nothing except extreme wealth and arrogance combined with a disregard for the common man. Even if they aren’t pompous, they don’t have much to say about their sheltered, pampered lives especially at that age.

The last thing we need is more of this nonsense cluttering the shelves. Many athletes wait until the end of their careers to write an autobiography. It would seem that would be the time to reflect upon one’s career. Success in college doesn’t ensure a long NFL career. Just ask every quarterback to come out of Florida. Being a winner in college isn’t unique or especially that interesting. Tebow may be more mature than many others coming out of college even if you take away the pious hype but that doesn’t mean that his insight into his career to date will be anything to worth reading for anyone besides Florida fans. I consider myself a diehard Chelsea fan but I have no desire to read Ashley Cole or Frank Lampard’s autobiographies. Manager Carlo Ancelotti? Absolutely. (A great read by the way. A review will be coming in the next couple days.)

If Tebow’s writing the book to preach his beliefs then a heads up would be great so anyone not interested won’t be subjected to whatever bathtub mint julep nonsense may be in it.

Tebow hasn’t accomplished anything. He was successful at the college level but has yet to accomplish anything professionally beside score two touchdowns. Colt McCoy is more successful than him so far. Think about that.

If that’s all it takes, I demand autobiographies from Brady Quinn and Kevin Kolb. While we’re at it, Sergio Kindle should write a book. He could talk about injuring himself and still getting a contract. See you can smoke crack like a mayor (Marion Barry not Kindle) or fall down two flights of stairs and still make it big, kids. Now that’s knowledge people can use. If I want advice on circumcision, I’ll go to a rabbi or Congolese village priest not an unproven NFL quarterback. Proven like Mark Rypien or Trent Dilfer? I’m all ears.

Reading Between the Headlines

The return of football season brings back to focus a lot of things, but most notably, the blustery sportscaster.  For some odd reason, FOOTBALL may only be announced in LOUD VOICES by GUYS who speak in run-on sentences while GRUNTING.  While I love football, I’m not sure I can take another season of Chris Berman gesticulating his way through a stream of highlights or Jon Gruden speaking in coach talk for an entire season.  There’s got to be someone better.  Nevermind.

And one other thing: Berman, I don’t normally like you, but for one reason or another, the moustache looks oddly right.  Bonus points for helping kill an emerging hipster trend.  On to this very special football-only edition of headlines:

Reading Between the Headlines

Late last year, I had a burgeoning five-hour energy problem.  I finally kicked it in early January, but now, thanks to Kansas State and Xavier, it’s coming back.  What a great game.  So now I’m debating a re-up – White Lightning, where you at?  Thankfully, there won’t be any more late-night weeknight games.  On to the headlines:

Before K-State survived, Syracuse was knocked out by Butler

Yeah, 75% of the country’s brackets were done last weekend, so we don’t care.  What I really care about is the deification of Gus Johnson.  What happened to this guy?  He’s not that good anymore.  A few years ago, he was solid.  Now, he’s just another screamer.  I found him almost unbearable last night. 

Meanwhile, Billy Raferty explained the origin of “onions.”

I, on the other hand, will never get tired of Billy Raferty.

Joe Mauer signed an 8-year $184M extension with the Minnesota Twins.

Couldn’t be happier for Twins fans; Mauer is a great player (even though his guaranteed $184M is roughly $32M more than what the team contributed to the funding of their new ballpark.  Thanks, Hennepin County!).  I just find it interesting that people are back-slapping the Twins for stepping up to the plate and taking such a big risk.  The recently- deceased owner was reportedly worth $3.6B.  Yeah, that’s a “B” for BILLION.  Excuse me if I’m not as obsequious.


Vicente Padilla, a true gentleman of the game.

Vicente Padilla will be the Opening Day starter for the Dodgers.

Apparently, Dean Wormer was wrongFat, drunk and Plaxico is a great way to go through life.

Gilbert Arenas will be sentenced today.  

I wouldn’t be surprised if Flip Saunders hopes for the chair.

Tim Tebow was cursed at when he suggested a prayer before the Wonderlic test.

Tebow is denying the story and if I were him, I’d deny it too.  The dude scored a 22 out of 50.  Just to give that score some context, 24 is the average for NFL QBs.  Even this guy beat him.  Clearly, Jesus was busy that day.   

Phil Hughes will start the season as the Yankees’ 5th starter.

Color me shocked.  If you followed the Yankees in spring training even somewhat closely, it was pretty easy to see this wasn’t really a competition.  And since most teams don’t need a 5th starter until May, once again, I must ask: who cares? 

Tiger Woods will hold a press conference the Monday before the Masters.

Wrestlemania XXVI is this weekend.

Now, there are two unrelated places that could both use Gus Johnson.

This week was kind of a downer, yes, I know.  Treat yourself to Keith Law’s Top 200 Rock Songs of the 1990’s.  In addition to his encyclopedic knowledge of music, I’m fairly certain he’s one of the few people in the world who could make the Kansas City Royals a playoff team.  That’s a rare combination of talent.   Have a great weekend, enjoy the games.