Some odds and ends during this quiet time for the NFL and the Patriots.
First, don’t forget we are fast approaching the deadline for voting for the Patriots Hall of Fame. Be sure to vote for the most deserving player … Houston Antwine: Patriots Hall of Fame Finalists.
Rob Gronkowski will be at Worcester’s Commerce Bank Field tommorrow from 12:30 to 5:00. This is the first of four “Football for You” youth clinics offered over the next month. There will also be several other former Patriots there as well, conducting coaching sessions. Gronk will greet and speak after the coaching portion of the event at 4:00; there is no charge to participants. Next month there will be similar events in Boston, Providence and Springfield. For more info go to the Patriots website at Football For You.
On Sunday Patrick Chung will be joining owner Robert Kraft at the annual Raytheon “Science of Sports” Science Fair at Gillette Stadium this Sunday. Chung will serve as one of the judges along with Kraft and Raytheon CEO William H. Swanson. For more info on this event visit Kraft, Chung to team up during lockout.
On May 17 Gary Guyton will be at the Celebrity Poker Tournament at Tavern on the Water in Boston to raise money for the Children’s Hospital. Others that will be there include former Boston Celtics Jo Jo White, Cedric Maxwell, ML Carr, and former RedSox pitcher Oil Can Boyd. The event starts at 6:30 and no tickets will be sold at the door; for more information and to register go to SPPSports.
I find it interesting to see how stories spread from one writer and site to the next.
FanNation, which is part of Sports Illustrated publishes Tired of INTs, Brady froze out Moss on the morning of May 13.
This story references Tom Curran’s CSNNE column No Moss In Patriots Future, which was published Thursday May 12.
That story includes a link to Patriots, Jets, Rams mentioned as possible Randy Moss destinations by Michael David Smith for Pro Football Talk on Monday May 9.
Both Curran and Smith reference Jason LaCanfora speaking on the NFL Network’s Total Access about Moss on Monday. That resulted in Future of Randy Moss raises plenty of questions being published on NFL.com that same day. PFT links back to another column on their site from May 6th, which is referenced to a two-sentence answer by Titan’s GM Mike Reinfeldt that day when asked on on free agent wide receiver Randy Moss. Reinfeldt responded “I honestly don’t think we’ll try to re-sign him. We’ve got some young guys we like and I think at this point in his career he will probably go elsewhere.” This quote ran in the Tennessean’s column, Titans coach, GM answer questions from season ticket holders.
So right now that two-sentence comment has created more than forty separate columns – most of which have unique slants, opinions and interpretations. All for a player that ranked 149th in the NFL in receptions last year, and 117th in receiving yards.
And yet many still wonder why Bill Belichick chooses to be cautious with comments that he and the rest of the football team make in public?
If you haven’t read it already, I highly recommend that you check out James Sanders: The Prototypical Patriot. During the interview Sanders discusses what the transition from college to pros was like; practicing opposite Tom Brady; helmet-to-helmet hits; what it is like to play for Bill Belichick, and much more. Mike Reiss and Ian Rapoport have included excerpts from the piece on their blogs that you may have seen, but in my opinion the full original column is well worth reading.
Back to Belichick for a moment: there was a very brief bit in the news this week about him appearing at the Franciscan Hospital for Children in Brighton, as part of a run and walk fundraiser that will take place on June 12. The reason not more was made of this? Because Belichick refused to do any interviews while he was there, instead devoting his full time and focus to the kids in the hospital. The media was alerted by the hospital that Belichick and Linda Holliday would be there for a photo op, and as a result they got the publicity for the upcoming event they were looking for. But when the media wanted to talk to him about football he politely declined; he was there solely to create awareness for the fundraiser and to spend time with the kids. Personally I thought that was great that he kept the focus where it was meant to be.
On the other hand there is this thing called the Horrigan Award, which I never heard of until about a week ago. The award is given out by the Pro Football Writers Association for “his or her qualities and professional style in helping the pro football writers do their job”; this year’s winner is New York Jets’ coach Rex Ryan.
My first thought was ‘shouldn’t this go to the head of a PR department’, but then I found out the PFWA has a separate award for that. In addition they have another one named the “Good Guy Award” which has nothing to do with charities and selflessness; it goes to the player that most helps the writers do their job.
So let me get this straight: the PFWA publicizes rewarding people for helping them do their job … yet has no award for things like public service, community service, etc.?
Check here for a list of the past recipients. A veritable who’s who of ‘good guys’: Brett Favre, Tiki Barber, O.J. Simpson, Warren Moon, Charley Casserly, and Joe Namath among others. What a joke; the PFWA should be ashamed of themselves for giving these awards out, especially when they do not have any similar genuine ‘good guy’ recognition.
Back to my seat on the last stool at the corner pub; there’s a cold one calling my name. Enjoy your Friday the 13th everyone.
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