The Thursday Show Prep

posted by Steve Bortstein - 

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers

My boss gets frustrated at me from time to time because I'm what is commonly referred to as a "hoarder".

The clinical definition of a hoarder, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (I want to party with these people someday) is a compulsive purchasing, acquiring, searching, and saving of items that have little or no value. 

I keep soundbites -- for a really long time -- saved on the servers for my show and for reference materials down the line. 

I admit, there are quite a few files, and by quite a few, I mean about 95 percent that I'll never use again once they've aired on the show.

But this morning, I was happy to find some old ones from last July.

Seems at that time, the Baltimore Ravens were in some sort of desperate need for a quarterback. There was concern last summer about the health of starting quarterback Joe Flacco. At that same time, there was an intense debate about whether a team would sign Colin Kaepernick to a contract. 

Kaepernick had some history and connection with Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. It was his brother Jim, who at the time when he was coaching the San Francisco 49ers, drafted Kaepernick who in turn led the team to two NFC title games and an appearance in the Super Bowl.

It seemed like a good fit on the field.

But it was also at that same time last summer when all the rhetoric and the controversy surrounding the so-called anthem protests were once again heating up.

Let's do a little comparative study, shall we, of the quotes from nearly eight months ago and the quotes from this week. 

This is why I save so many damn soundbites.

Ravens coach John Harbaugh, July 27, 2017 on the prospect of signing Colin Kaepernick:
"I wouldn't rule it out at all. He's a really good football player. I believe he's a really good person.... Definitely got to get another arm in here. He's not an arm obviously, he's an accomplished football player and we always like having good football players around."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh, April 5, 2018 on the announced signing of Robert Griffin III:
"He's a very talented quarterback who's had a lot of success in this league. We're excited about it. We felt like we needed a number 2 quarterback... I felt like he really wanted to be here, really wanted to be a Raven. He makes us a better football team."

Cliche warnings and talking points aside, there is literally no difference at all between the descriptions of these two individual athletes made by the same head coach.

Except for one thing.... Numbers.

Kaepernick career stats:
28 wins, 30 losses in regular season (4-2 in the postseason)
79 TD passes, 35 interceptions, 14,145 career passing yards, 17 rushing TDs

Griffin career stats:
15 wins, 25 losses in regular season (0-1 in the postseason)
44 TD passes, 27 interceptions, 9,007 career passing yards, 10 rushing TDs


I know that very few of you reading this passage are going to stand up in defense of a man who refused to stand up for the anthem.

That's the pity. Because if we're going to apply some standards to some only when its convenient, then let's try another standard when it comes to a job description.

Who was the more qualified person for the position?

I guess that's where we differ in terms of what's "best for business."

Johnny Manziel hasn't finished his AA training

The so-called big book in Alcoholics Anonymous suggests you must take some accountability for your actions.

That seems logical, not just for people struggling with an addictive behavior, but it makes sense all over the place.

It could be argued that Manziel might have skipped that portion of the "big book" after comments he made this week suggesting his problems with the Cleveland Browns were, in fact, the fault of the team.

Manziel told Dan Patrick that if the Browns had done their homework on Manziel, they'd have realized he wasn't the player the team was looking for.

“I see a successful guy in the NFL in what they do in the offseason, and the time that they put in that makes them good players. yes, they’re athletically gifted but guys are good in the NFL because they know film, they study hard, and they work even harder in the offseason. I didn’t know that If Cleveland did any of their homework, they would have known that I was a guy that didn’t come in every day and watch film. I was a guy that didn’t really know the X’s and O’s of football.” Johnny Manziel

To his credit, Manziel not only takes a bit of the responsibility, but also tried later to clarify his comments, but the damage was already done.

The simple fact is Manziel still feels entitled to the benefits and the accolades. He's not ready to take any real responsibility for what eventually got him tossed off the team and, inevitably, ostracized from the league.

The tour down redemption road has been a rocky one indeed for Manziel, and it appears less and less likely there'll be any real NFL-type destination for him in the future.

Edelman's Instagram saves lives

An example of both the good and bad of social media. Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman was notified of a comment posted on his Instagram account by a 14-year old boy who threatened to shoot up his high school. The boy has been charged with making terroristic threats. It’s great no one was hurt, but also demoralizing to come to terms with the fact that this is becoming the norm.

For more information, check out the story here from the New York Times.

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