Tuesday, April 29, 2008

NFL Rookie Max salary

The Counselor is IN:

Another NFL Draft has come and gone. There are several more rich young men from huge contracts of the first round picks. The majority of the money is given out to the top of the draft. The number 1 over all pick, OT Jake Long, is now the highest paid offensive lineman and he has not even stepped on the field for practice yet. Teams can not trade out of the top slot because no team wants the expense of the number one pick. This is crazy money for these players.

I believe that a Rookie contracts should be limited in some form of a Rookie Maximum cap. The top picks should get paid much better than a seventh round pick but should not be the highest paid player at that position. This would also help player to get signed and into camp. NFL Commissioner Roger S. Goodell agreed with this idea last week on Mike and Mike in the Morning. I know that the NBA has a similar cap with their rookies.

National Football League Players' Association leader Gene Upshaw does not agree. Below are his comments on this idea.

Every spring, the buzz from general managers is, 'We need to fix rookie compensation.' We addressed this issue by limiting rookie pool growth and fixing the maximum number of years a rookie could sign. The length of contracts severely limits players’ ability to move money into future years. What the media doesn’t report is that the rookie pool is part of the overall salary cap, and a player is only a rookie for one season. Clubs want the players to pay for mistakes teams make in drafting. We’ll never agree to a rookie wage scale in such a short-career sport. (NFL)

If there was a fix to the rookie compensation, then the teams would need to pay their veterans more. The overall salary cap would remain the same but teams could afford to compensate their own players better. This may actually help players to remain with one team longer.

This idea makes too much sense to me. It would be smart utilization of limited resources and cap money. I would think more union members would want to help their compensation rather than a few rookies.

The Counselor is OUT:

Accusations against Clemens continues to mount

The Counselor is IN:

First were accusations that Roger Clemens used steroids. He testified before Congress stating that he did not use steroids. This was contrary to Brian McNamee testimony that Roger did use. Roger is facing a lawsuit for defamation of character from McNamee.

The latest twist on the scandal has Roger having a ten year affair with a country music star, Mindy McCready. The accusations have Roger starting the affair when Mindy was 15 years old. MSNBC has the story. “'I cannot refute anything in the story,' McCready told the newspaper in a story posted on its Web site Monday night."

Roger is the best pitcher of my generation. He should be a first ballot Hall of Famer. These accusations could not only damage his reputation and affect the lawsuit against him, but they could potentially keep him out of the Hall of Fame. We know that off the field issues can keep you out of the Hall. If any evidence of this comes out, this could ruin Clemens.

Beyond all of that, if these accusations are true, then Roger will be going to jail for a long time. He will have violated a teenage girl. Sex offenders are not treated very nicely in prison. Roger may in for a nightmare of legal issues.

It is very sad to see your heroes fall.

The Counselor is OUT:

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Live NFL Draft- Round 1 Commentary

Here is my running commentary of the first round. I will blog as far into the first round as my time allows.

1) Miami Dolphins- OL, Jake Long, Virginia, 6'7", 335 lbs. Long is a stud Left Tackle that the Dolphins can build around. We have known about this pick since Tuesday. This is a classic Bill Parcells pick. This should shore up the offensive line immediately. A bunch of teams were hoping Long would slip a bit. This is a great pick for the Dolphins. Boomer called him the Pancake Blocker.

2) St. Louis Rams- DE, Chris Long, Virginia, 6'4", 266 lbs. Long , the son of the great Howie Long, is a QB sacking machine. He has a motor that will not quit. He brings enthusiasm to the field even during practice. The Rams had a hard time getting to the opposing QBs last year. Long will start right away and should continue to be a sacking machine for St. Louis.

3) Atlanta Falcons- QB Matt Ryan, Boston College 6’5”, 224 lbs. He is a very accurate passer that has a bunch of intangibles. More importantly, he is the new face of the Falcons. This is important since Michael Vick was the previous face. Many feel that he is the only franchise QB in this year’s draft and next year’s draft.

4) Oakland Raiders- RB Darrin McFadden, Arkansas, 6’2”, 210 lbs. McFadden has homerun hitting speed. Al Davis loves fast guys. McFadden’s explosiveness should be a good compliment to the other running backs for the Raiders, who lacked speed at Running back last year. There are questions if he can be an every down player or if he will do better with 15 carries a game.

5) Kansas City Chiefs- DT Glenn Dorsey, LSU, 6’1.5”, 313 lbs. Many people feel that Dorsey is the best player in the draft including Mel Kiper. He will shore up the run defense for the Chiefs. This is a bit of a surprise pick just because they need pass rushers and Offensive lineman. It appears that Dorsey was too good to pass on. This should be a great pick at number five but it does not address their key needs. They do have a bunch of picks to address those needs.

6) New York Jets- DE Vernon Gholston, Ohio State, 6‘3”, 260 lbs. He is an intense pass rusher that will be converted to an OLB in the 3-4. He had great stats but appears to take downs off. He did not play football until his sophomore year of high school. He should be a great addition to the Jets.

7) New England Patriots- traded to the New Orleans Saints: The Saints trade 1st and 3rd for the Patriots’ 1st and 5th picks.

7) New Orleans Saints – DT Sedrick Ellis, USC, 6’1”, 307 lbs. He is a force in the middle. He is an impact defensive tackle. He is the man that the Saints wanted badly to stop the run. Ellis was clearly the second best DT in the draft just slightly behind Dorsey.

8) Baltimore Ravens- traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars: The Jags traded their 1st, and two 3rds, and 4th round picks for the Raven’s 1st round pick.

8) Jacksonville Jaguars- DE Derrick Harvey, Florida, 6’4”, 260 lbs. Harvey is clearly the next best DE on the board. The Jags really liked him and need a DE. This may be a bit of a reach but the Jags feel that he is worth it. The Jags used to have a dominating Defense and are hopeful that Harvey can help them get back to it.

9) Cincinnati Bengals- ILB Keith Rivers, USC, 6’3”, 237 lbs. This is a solid pick for the Bengals with solid character. He is the best true linebacker on the board. He will play well in their defense. He will not be a problem in that previously volatile (may be again is Ocho Cino plays) locker room.

10) New Orleans Saints- traded to New England Patriots: (see above)

10) New England Patriots- ILB Jerod Mayo, Tennessee, 6’2”, 235 lbs. He is another solid linebacker. The Patriots should be very happy to get younger at the LB position. Mayo should come in and produce for them right away. They get a good player and get more picks by trading back.

11) Buffalo Bills- CB Leodis McKelvin, Troy, 5’10.5”, 186 lbs. This is a bit of a surprise pick because I thought they would go WR. That said, this pick makes since for their needs. McKelvin has been list as the top CB by many of the experts. Many felt he would go in the top ten.

12) Denver Broncos- OT Ryan Clady, Boise State, 6’6”, 320 lbs. He should help the Broncos immediately at LT. Clady did not play against the most challenging of defenses in college but he should still transition nicely to the NFL. Many experts also believed he would go earlier than 12.

13) Carolina Panthers- RB Johnathan Stewart, 5’11”, 230 lbs. This is a surprise pick for the Panthers. I really thought they would look at their offensive line or even add a defensive player. Stewart will give the Panthers a tandem like most teams are going to. I really thought Mendenhall would go before Stewart. Very interesting pick.

14) Chicago Bears- OT Chris Williams, Vanderbuilt, 6’6”, 317 lbs. He will help this line that crumbled last year. This is a great pick for the Bears. They could have traded it for multiple picks but they did get a top level offensive lineman.

15) Detroit Lions- Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs trade their 1st, 3rd, and 5th picks for the Lions 1st and 3rd picks.

15) Kansas City Chiefs- OT/OG Brandon Albert, 6’6.5”, 320 lbs. Albert was potentially the Chiefs pick at five until Dorsey fell to them. For them to go out and get him at 15 is a steal. Albert should have been taken earlier. This is a true steal for the Chiefs. They now have their LT for this season and the future.

16) Arizona Cardinals- Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Tenn State, 6’1.5”, 183 lbs. He is a potentially stud CB which has been a hot commodity of late. He fell a little lower than expected earlier in the week. He is not from a big time program but has shown himself well in the Senior Bowl. The Cardinals could have gone in several directions including RB. It is a good pick but it is not what I thought the Cardinals would do.

17) Kansas City Chiefs (from MIN)- traded to the Detroit Lions:

17) Detroit Lions- RT Gosder Cherilus, Boston College, 6’6.5”, 313 lbs. He is more of a RT and not a LT but should immediately help this porous line. It is a bit of reach pick since Cherilus was predicted to go in the last first or early second round.

18) Houston Texans- Traded to the Baltimore Ravens:

18) Baltimore Ravens- QB Joe Flacco, Delaware, 6’6”, 237 lbs. Mel stated that he has the strongest arm of any QB in this draft but is still able to move around in the pocket. It is said that he is a quick learner. This is the pick that the Ravens wanted. They traded down and then moved back up to ensure they would have their man.

19) Philadelphia Eagles- Traded to Carolina Panthers: The Panthers give the Eagles their 2nd and 4th from this year and next year’s 1st pick for the Eagles’ 1st round pick.

19) Carolina Panthers- OT Jeff Otah, Pittsburg, 6’6.5”, 341 lbs. He is a big boy that will help their running game. Boomer refers to him as a “mauler”. He is the last top level offensive lineman. He did not play football early in High school. He is still developing some of his skills but is quickly learning how to dominate on the O’ Line.

20) Tampa Bay Buccaneers- CB Aqib Talib, Kansas, 6’1”, 195 lbs. Talib is a very talented CB that fell because of behavioral concerns and drug use. He is a great pick talent wise for the Bucs. We will have to see how his behavioral issues are in the NFL.

21) Washington Redskins- Traded to the Atlanta Falcons:

21) Atlanta Falcons: OT Sam Baker, USC, 6’5”, 314 lbs. The Falcons do need to address their offensive line. Baker is a bit of a reach at this point but the Falcons felt that he would not be there at the beginning of the second round. They need to protect QB Ryan that they just drafted. It is an interesting pick.

22) Dallas Cowboys (from CLE)- RB Felix Jones, Arkansas, 6’0”, 207 lbs. Okay, time for this Cowboy fan to rant about this pick. With the board falling well for the Cowboys where they could get either CB Jenkins or any WR at this spot, they reach to get Jones. Jones would have been there at 28 or maybe they could have traded up for him in the second round. RB was a need position for the Cowboys but CB is a greater one. Why not wait or consider Mendenhall if you are going RB at this position. I am sure that Jones will be a great edition to the Cowboys and will give them the speed they need as a change of pace back.

23) Pittsburgh Steelers- RB Rashard Mendenhall, Illinois, 5’10.5”, 215 lbs. This is picking the best player on the board. This will give the Steelers the 2 back system with Mendenhall being more of a between the tackles runner. This is a good pick.

24) Tennessee Titans- RB Chris Johnson, East Carolina, 5’10”, 201 lbs. This team needs WRs but they went and picked a fast RB. He is the fastest player in the draft. This is a reach pick and did not meet the needs of Vince Young. They will now have a thunder and lightning running combination of Johnson and White.

25) Seattle Seahawks- traded to the Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys trade their 1st (28) 5th, and 7th round picks for the Seahawks 1st.

25) Dallas Cowboys- CB Mike Jenkins, South Florida, 5’11”, 200 lbs. As a Cowboys fan, I screamed in joy with this pick. I wished they would have done pick in the other order but they did get Mike Jenkins at CB. This will help shore up that secondary that struggled in the regular season and was smoked in the playoffs by the Giants. This should instantly help the Cowboys. Henry should be playing safety on passing downs instead of Roy Williams.

26) Jacksonville Jaguars- traded to the Baltimore Ravens and then traded to the Houston Texans: See above trades

26) Houston Texans- OT Duane Brown, Virginia Tech, 6’4.5”, 302 lbs. Houston has needed a LT for a long time. This is about the right time for Brown to come out. This should have out the Texans who have struggled on the O’ Line.

27) San Diego Chargers- CB Antoine Cason, 6’0”, 191 lbs. This is a good pick for the Chargers. They can definitely use the help in the secondary. Cason was not the next best CB on my board but it is not really a stretch pick.

28) Dallas Cowboys- traded to the Seattle Seahawks: (see above)

28) Seattle Seahawks- DE Lawrence Jackson, USC, 6’5”, 270 lbs. I thought they would go and get either D.E. Merling, DT Balmer, or TE Davis or Keller. Jackson is a good De but I think Merling is better. I think Balmer would have been a much better pick.

29) San Francisco 49ers (from IND)- DT Kentwan Balmer, North Carolina, 6’4”. 295 lbs. This is a good defensive pick but this team does need some offensive help. He will help immediately in the 3-4 defense.

30) Green Bay Packers- traded to the New York Jets: Jets trade their 2nd and 4th pick for the Packers’ 1st pick.

30) New York Jets- TE Dustin Keller, 6’2”, 251 lbs. Keller is a great receiving TE. He is a former WR. He should help this team by catching the ball over the middle. He can play like a WR but is still a big boy. He is not much of a blocker at this time.

31) New York Giants- Safety Kenny Phillips, 6’2”, 210 lbs. Kenny is the best safety on the board. This is a great pick for Giants. Phillips should develop into a top safety in the NFL.

The Counselor is OUT:

FSC- Final Mock Draft

The Counselor is IN:

Here is the final mock draft before the draft starts in an hour and a half.

1. Miami Dolphins- Jake Long OT, Michigan
2. St. Louis Rams- Chris Long DE, Virginia
3. Atlanta Falcons- Matt Ryan QB BC
4. Oakland Raiders- Glenn Dorsey DT LSU
5. Kansas City Chiefs- Vernon Gholston DE OSU
6. New York Jets- Darren MdFadden RB Ark
7. New England Cheaters- Keither Rivers LB USC
8. Baltimore Ravens- Brandon Albert T/G Virginina
9. Cincinnati Bengals: Cedric Ellis, DT, USC
10. New Orleans Saints: Leodis McKelvin, CB, Troy
11. Buffalo Bills: Devin Thomas, WR/KR, Michigan State
12. Denver Broncos: Jerod Mayo LB Tenn
13. Carolina Panthers: Ryan Clady, T, Boise State
14. Chicago Bears: Jeff Ottah, T, Pittsburgh
15. Detroit Lions: Derrick Harvey, DE, Florida
16. Arizona Cardinals: Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois
17. Kansas City Chiefs (from MIN): Chris Williams, T, Vanderbilt
18. Houston Texans: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Tenn State
19. Philadelphia Eagles: Malcolm Kelly, WR, Oklahoma
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Desean Jackson, WR, California
21. Washington Redskins: Quentin Groves, DE, Auburn
22. Dallas Cowboys (from CLE): Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida
23. Pittsburgh Steelers: Gosder Cherilus, T, Boston College
24. Tennessee Titans: Limas Sweed, WR, Texas
25. Seattle Seahawks: Kentwan Balmer, DT, North Carolina
26. Jacksonville Jaguars: Phillip Merling, DE, Clemson
27. San Diego Chargers: Carl Nicks, OT, Nebraska
28. Dallas Cowboys: James Hardy, WR, Indiana
29. San Francisco 49ers (from IND): Donnie Avery, WR, Houston
30. Green Bay Packers: Aqib Talib, CB, Kansas
31. New York Giants: Kenny Phillips, S, Miami-Florida

The Counselor is OUT:

Friday, April 25, 2008

2008 NFL Draft is hours away

The Counselor is IN:

Tomorrow at 2:00 pm CDT, the NFL will hold its annual player selection draft. I will again live blog part of the first round (all if it is possible). I do have a time constraint this year so I may not be able to live blog the entire first round. Please check back here or at Simple Thoughts of a Complex Mind for my live comments on the different selections of the first round.

The Counselor is OUT:

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Walsh to testify about Patriots Taping procedures

The Counselor is IN:

Matt Walsh, the former video assistant with the New England Patriots, has agreed to discuss the Patriots taping producers with Commissioner Goodell on May 13. He has agreed to turn over any video to support his potential allegations.

The agreement also requires Mr. Walsh to return any tapes and other items in his possession that belong to the Patriots. In return, the NFL and the Patriots have promised not to sue Mr. Walsh. They also will indemnify him for any expenses, including legal fees that he incurs in connection with the interview. (ESPN)

I am not sure if Commissioner Goodell is investigating this further because he believes there might be more to the story than what he was told or if he is doing this to keep congress off of his back. Senator Specter did blister the Commissioner for destroying evidence. Specter also has stated that he wished he could have seen the tapes.

Either way this story is not going away until Walsh testifies and presents evidence before Goodell. Even then, Congress could do their own investigation. What happens if there is support for the rumors of taping of the Rams final practice before the Super Bowl? Could the Patriots or Bill Belichick receive more discipline than the slap on the wrist from the Jets taping? What if the Patriots have been cheating for years and using it in games? We will have to wait and see.

The Counselor is OUT:

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Late starting draft frustrates

The Counselor is IN:

In years past, the NFL Draft would start in the late morning. The first 2 rounds would end by early evening. I expected this trend would continue.

I did know the section times had decreased this year. I expected that I could watch the first two rounds and still have the evening open. I made plans with my wife to attend a fancy restaurant for next Saturday night. I thought I would be able to live blog the first round with no problems.

Earlier in the week, I came to the sad realization that the draft is not starting at its usual early time. It begins at 3:00pm central daylight time. I am going to miss a good portion of the draft because I failed to check the time of the draft. You know what assuming does. My DVR will be recording it and I will watch it when I get home.

Why did we have to change the time? Oh well.

The Counselor is OUT:

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Skipping your pick strategy

The Counselor is IN:

There is some discussion that the Tuna might not select anyone with the Dolphins’ number one pick. Miami could hold onto the card and let the Rams go on the clock. Then they can jump in front of any team after that to make their selection. This could save them a bundle of cash and they could still get a top pick.

This strategy is not only possible but very much in line with the rules. This has been verified by the NFL front offices. The question remains if Bill Parcels would really want to use this. It comes across as very bush league.

If the Dolphins do this, I could see other teams using it also during this draft. The Kansas City Chiefs would love to trade down if OT Jake Long is not there. They might use this strategy to pick later and still get a good OL without having to pay number 5 money for them. Other teams might also consider it.

If Parcels and the Dolphins use this strategy, I can see the rules committee changing it completely next year.

If it does happen, there might be a discussion on a rookie contract salary cap, like in the NBA. A rookie really should not make as much as a top 5 veteran player at their position but often this is the case with these early pick contracts. These top pick contracts can destroy a team if that player does not work out

It could get very interesting on Draft Day.

The Counselor is OUT.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Hold steady with struggling studs

The Counselor is IN:

We are a couple of weeks into the fantasy baseball season. Many of the stud players are currently struggling. I know that many of my players are. Here are just a few examples.

The consistent .300 hitting SS Michael Young is only hitting a .2083 so far this season. Pudge Rodriguez is batting an under the Mendoza line with .1951. Super DH- David Ortiz is hitting a meager .0698 (yes that is a 0 in front). There are many other examples of studs that are not hitting yet.

There are also plenty of top pitchers flailing mightily. The A's Closer, Huston Street, has an inflated 6.429 ERA. Phil Huges, the 2nd year Yankee's stud, has an ERA of 9.00. Then there is Cleveland's Ace, C.C. Sabathia, who has an ERA 11.571 and a WHIP (Walks + Hits/ Innings Pitched) of 2.357.

Over the past several years, I have owned Johan Santana. He usually struggles in April for some reason. But by August he is always a top pitcher. That is par for course with Santana. No one remembers his early season challenges when he is winning another Cy Young.

It is not time to panic. Hold onto your studs that are having an early season woos. They usually will bounce right back. It is way too early to dump players. I would even hold onto your struggling flyer players at this time. There is a lot of games left (only 10% have been played) and things have a way of balancing out.

The Counselor is OUT:

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Updated Mock Draft @ CP

The Counselor is IN:

The NFL mock draft at Cowboys Pride has been updated. Check out who your favorite team might be selecting. Also check out their on going GM NFL Mock Draft where regular members are drafting for teams.

The Counselor is OUT: