November 21, 2014 |
With the NFL and the ex-players who support its nearly $1 billion settlement on the defense Wednesday and those seeking its rejection on the attack, the ongoing legal skirmish over the league's concussion agreement headed into overtime. The long day of testimony in Courtroom 7-B of Philadelphia's federal courthouse was aimed at determining the fairness of the settlement. Senior U.S. District Court Judge Anita Brody, who granted conditional approval this summer after the NFL agreed to lift its cap on damages, has yet to decide on the agreement's fate.
November 20, 2014 |
Critics of the NFL's $765 million settlement proposal to compensate former players for concussion-related health problems will finally have their day in court Wednesday, as the designers of the landmark deal push for final approval from a federal judge. U.S. District Judge Anita Brody, who has overseen the massive case involving more than 5,000 individual lawsuits and 20,000 potentially eligible league retirees, is set to preside over a fairness hearing in what could be one of the final steps to resolving a legal fight that began three years ago with allegations that the league hid or ignored the long-term dangers of head-hits for decades.
November 18, 2014
Since the Packers began the season 1-2 and Aaron Rodgers urged fans to "relax," he has been on a roll rarely seen in the NFL. Green Bay is 6-1 since then, and the quarterback has been the main reason. Here is what he has done the last seven games: 23 TD passes and just two interceptions. Quarterback ratings of: 151.2, 138.7, 99.7, 154.5, 93.7, 145.8, and 120.3 (Sunday vs. Eagles). 9.7 average yards per pass attempt (2,051 yards in 211 attempts). Rodgers entered the game leading the NFL at 8.7 per attempt.
November 16, 2014 |
Don't look now, but the 1950s are breaking out in the NFL. Talk all you want about parity, but nearly one-third of the league's 32 teams - 10 of 32 - have yet to win a Super Bowl. That might change in what is shaping up to be a season of revivals. More than halfway through the 2014 schedule, four of the NFL's eight divisions are led by teams that have never hoisted a Lombardi Trophy - the Eagles, Browns, Lions, and Cardinals. That's interesting because, if you're willing to conflate the new and original Browns, those four combined to win 10 of the 14 NFL titles between 1947 and 1960.
November 16, 2014 |
The Eagles worked out free-agent quarterbacks Terrelle Pryor and Thad Lewis last week, an NFL source said. Pryor, who spent his first three NFL seasons with the Raiders, was traded to the Seahawks in April and was released in August. The 6-foot-4, 233-pounder wants to continue to play quarterback, but he could have a better chance to land with a team as a wide receiver. The Eagles also worked out the 6-2, 220-pound Lewis, who has four seasons of NFL experience as a backup, in August.
November 10, 2014 |
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell was a little busy last week as he prepared to explain to an appeals judge his finger-in-the-wind decision process regarding the suspension and re-suspension of Baltimore running back Ray Rice. Even so, Goodell must have noticed that one of the league's owners, Washington's Daniel Snyder, was suing five Native Americans for the crime of being upset about the "Redskins" team nickname. If he wins the suit, maybe Snyder can take their land and force them to live in a fenced-in section of the FedEx Field parking lot. Not much of a view, but, hey, no income tax. The five activists, perhaps to their own surprise, won a ruling earlier this year from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that canceled six of the team's trademarks that used the word "Redskins," with the ruling board stating it did so because the word was "disparaging to Native Americans.
November 2, 2014 |
The inclination is always to compare and debate whenever Tom Brady and Peyton Manning go against one another, which the future Hall of Fame quarterbacks will do for the 16th time in their careers Sunday when the New England Patriots play host to the Denver Broncos. They are not just two of the best quarterbacks of their era, they are two of the best ever, and they remain elite even as they approach the age of 40. You can look for cracks, but it would be a huge mistake to ever think you have found one. They may have a bad game every now and again, as Brady did in Week 4 vs. Kansas City, but neither has ever had a bad season, unless you count the ones they sat out injured.
November 1, 2014 |
All week, the questions about how the Eagles are going to handle J.J. Watt this Sunday were numerous and persistent. Center Jason Kelce, preparing to play for the first time since undergoing Week 4 abdominal surgery, said all the usual things about how smart and fierce Watt is, how hard it is to prepare for an opponent who moves around the line so much. Finally, though, after question number eleventy-billion about Watt, Kelce said this: "We don't care who we're playing, we're playing our offense.
October 31, 2014 |
Bill O'Brien feels at home again. That probably sounds like a silly thing to say about a guy from New England who left a job in State College, Pa., for one deep in the heart of Texas. Home for O'Brien, however, is not so much about location as it is the level of football he is coaching. He showed a lot of courage in January 2012 when he left his job as the New England Patriots offensive coordinator to take over a storied college program that had shockingly spiraled out of control.
October 29, 2014
GLENDALE, Ariz. - There's no crime in being pretty good. Consider Canada; even Americans agree their neighbors are all right. Malaysia isn't Singapore, but it's hard to have a bad time in Kuala Lumpur. Sweden and Norway get all the press, but you might actually come out smarter if you're raised in Finland. There is no häpeä in hailing from Helsinki, no shame having kinfolk in Calgary. So, too, there is nothing wrong with being an Eagle; nothing wrong with being pretty good.