So football is finally back with last night’s Hall of Fame pre-season game in Canton. While I only watched about five minutes of the game last night, and I honestly can’t tell you much about what happened last night (other than Kevin Kolb getting hurt), it was simply enough to know that there was a game on; all felt right with the world again. The Saints beat the Cardinals 17-10, and this Thursday brings a slate of five pre-season games including my Patriots hosting those same Saints.
Speaking of the Patriots, they are looking a bit lean on the offensive line right now. Logan Mankins is still out and Robert Gallery retired after unsuccessfully trying to come back from an injury, while Sebastian Vollmer is still rehabbing and Brian Waters has yet to report to camp. The thought is that Waters has simply reached a private agreement with Belichick not to report until he has to, and the veteran guard played at a Pro Bowl level last season. But if Waters does not return this group could find itself in some trouble early on.
In other football news, the lockout with NFL officials still has not been resolved, so Thursday will see the first ever appearance by a female official. Replacement official Shannon Eastin will be one of the officials for the Green Bay at San Diego game. So it essentially has taken a negative experience (failure to reach an agreement) to see a good thing accomplished. Hopefully Eastin will be the first of many female officials to follow.
Pittsburgh wide receiver Mike Wallace still has had no contact with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and seems intent on holding out despite being under contract. Given that the Steelers awarded a large contract to fellow receiver Antonio Brown, this situation does not look like it is going to end well for Wallace in Pittsburgh. While Wallace is an excellent talent, his contract demands are preposterous for his resume.
Finally, a shocker…. Brandon Weeden is now the official starting quarterback of the Cleveland Browns. OK, maybe that’s not a shocker to me or you, but it is apparently a shock to former starter Colt McCoy, who seems to be under the impression that when the Browns told him he would have a fair shot at the job, that they meant he would have a fair shot at the job. Speaking with the Cleveland Plain Dealer, McCoy said, “I have not taken any snaps with the first group. I thought coming in it would be a competition.”Given the Browns’ treatment of Colt to date, it seems like a rather large leap of faith on his part to believe that he had any chance at all. While McCoy has not demanded a trade, a good pre-season showing might motivate another team to seek his services, and you can count me as one person who would really like to see that happen. The Browns don’t deserve McCoy, whether or not he ever proves to be an NFL starter. And this will only end with another miserable season for the Browns and a house cleaning by ownership in the next off-season. The Factory of Sadness just keeps producing.
On a final note, a shout out to the Rat’s Widow, who in addition to writing an excellent article for football widows everywhere, also bought me NESN (to see my Boston sports) and an improved sports package, as well as getting our NFL Sunday Ticket upgraded. Life is good.