12/30/2013 at 7:39 PM #33597
The NFL is the most watched sport, and it isn’t even close. There are a number of reasons why this is the case. But here are just a few of my observations to start the conversation for why the league has captured my attention THIS year:
Win or go home: You think the seat is hot on college coaches? Four NFL coaches were fired today, a day known as Black Monday. Your recently unemployed include Shanahan, Schwartz, Schiano, Chudzinski and Kubiak (last week). More could follow. Put simply, I don’t care who you are or what you’ve done, you better win – or go home (with millions in the bank, of course).
Unexpected success: On the flip side, you have coaches that far exceeded expectations. Carolina’s Ron Rivera saved his job after starting 1-3 with an incredible 11-1 finish and locking up a two-seed in the NFC. And what can you say about Andy Reid leading the Chiefs out of never-never land in just one year? And how about Chip Kelly in Philly? He proved all the doubters wrong in no time. A good coach is a good coach, college or pro.
Peyton Manning: Enough said on this one. How can you not LOVE this guy? Comeback story, set all the records, and oh yea, he is darn easy to pull for as a class act. He embodies everything that is great in the NFL. The consumate professional. Would love to see him win another Super Bowl.
Wild Sunday: With a number of playoff spots and seeding scenarios on the line on the last Sunday of the season, we were treated to several great games with it all on the line. KC/San Diego was a classic. And the Eagles/Cowboys did not disappoint either, as Dallas had to play a backup in Orton. Simply put, EVERY game matters in the NFL.
Feel free to share your favorite NFL storylines as the playoffs commence. We are certainly in for a treat.12/30/2013 at 9:15 PM #33808
Forgot Frazier was let go too in Minny. Good golly today was bloody.12/30/2013 at 9:46 PM #33834wufpup76Keymaster
Chud out after one season. Ouch.
He goes from coaching Cam to unemployed … On a side note, I wonder why organizations don’t try to emulate the Steelers more. It’s fair to say that they’ve had some really good head coaches, but they also stick by their guys on the occasional one or two off years. I don’t think Tomlin would even be let go if they didn’t make the playoffs next season (given that they are relatively competitive and they’re not looking to completely overhaul the roster – which they rarely do).
The Steelers have had remarkably consistent success … A key to that is, well, consistency. Are they the outlier, or someone to emulate? I think the Panthers even show organizational consistency. Not a lot of coaching changes, even though there was speculation about Rivera as soon as midway through his first season. They even kept former GM Hurney for a long time when he would’ve been let go at a lot of other places.
Contrast the Steelers to Snyder’s Redskins, or the Raiders of the past twenty-five seasons … It’s amusing.12/30/2013 at 10:04 PM #33838
Nobody cared for Chud. Steve Smith can’t stand the guy. He had not earned the respect of the players.
Yep, Panthers have had some pretty good ones. Rivera is no different. Players love the guy.
Panther fans don’t like to admit it but Hurney put together the bulk of this team and staff. Funny how that works.12/30/2013 at 10:15 PM #33840Alpha WolfKeymaster
A lot of owners think they know more about football coaching and management than they do. They also have NFL teams as their toys, because they got their money through other means. Snyder, the Browns owner, the guy who owns the Jags and Mark Davis of the Raiders all come to mind. Jerry Jones too, but he knows a good little bit about football because he played in college.12/31/2013 at 10:05 AM #33851BJD95Keymaster
PeyPey is the bestest. If you haven’t, watch the “Book of Manning” SEC Storied episode. PeyPey talks about being 10, and telling his peewee coach he didn’t know what he was doing. Archie made him apologize, and you can tell from his facial expressions that PeyPey is still pissed off about it (because he believes he was right). Archie better hope that Elisha and/or Cooper picks out his nursing home LMAO.12/31/2013 at 8:40 PM #33905TexpackParticipant
The NFL is the best league in pro sports because it has a hard salary cap and non-guaranteed contracts. It is a meritocracy and stupid moves don’t last forever.12/31/2013 at 9:20 PM #33906
…and stupid moves don’t last forever.
Unless you’re Cleveland…12/31/2013 at 9:29 PM #33907
I agree, Texpack, and that is one of the reasons why you see a some worst to first, and first to last after just a season. See Houson Texans. Or KC Chiefs. Or the Iggles. Or the Panthers. And Baltimore, your Super Bowl Champion a season ago, watches from home. Of course, you have the Patriots as the model of consistency (and the Browns, Lions, Raiders and Bills as the models of futility). Usually able to put Pittsburgh on that list, but not so much this season. And what was it, just a few seasons ago, the NFC West was a joke. Now it is rock solid with three very legit teams. The tides turn so quickly in the NFL. And that is another reason why we watch, for better or for worse.01/01/2014 at 9:08 AM #33923BJD95Keymaster
A pure socialist meritocracy! Doesn’t work for politics, but pretty badass for pro sports.01/01/2014 at 10:02 AM #35004GowolvesParticipant
Being a Pittsburgh fan they may be struggling for a few years. They are in salary cap hell. Then we will see if they keep Tomlin. I think with quick develop of quarterbacks in the last few years have made owners believe a quick turnaround is easy. I think that’s what happened in Cleveland. They say Detroit is the best job out there because of all the talent for the incoming coach but I’m not so sure. Stafford can’t seem to figure out that the strongest arm doesn’t always win. He makes the dumbest decisions. The rest of the team is stacked. Just shows that the league is driven by quarterbacks. Ryan in in NY gets another shot which I think will be his last if they miss the playoffs again.01/04/2014 at 3:45 PM #35651
Titans fire Munchak.
Wade Phillips out as DC in Houston.
Cowher sitting 2014 out.01/06/2014 at 7:40 AM #35747StateFansKeymaster
I might be the most engaged in the NFL this year than I have ever been. A large part of that is because of the strength and depth of our NC State alums in the league…but that isn’t all of it.
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