Hooked On The NinersBianchini's Market

On the Tunney Side of the Street 27

by Jim Tunney

After Further Review ... The National Football League is experiencing "disconnects" (i.e. 'some things just don't make sense') in its 2009 season. Here are a couple:

In the Sunday night game with the New York Giants at the Dallas Cowboys new stadium, Giants place kicker #9 Lawrence Tynes lined up to kick the winning field goal with 4 seconds remaining. Dallas Head Coach Wade Phillips waited until the play clock had almost expired, then, standing alongside the line judge, quickly called "time out." The New York Giants center snapped the ball on count and Tynes kicked it through the uprights - "field goal good" - Giants win! But wait - the time-out was called just before the ball was kicked.

Coach Phillips did what other coaches have done, and what the NFL rules permit. But is it right? "Freezing the kicker," as it is euphemistically called, is a legal strategy and, although it seldom works, you never know ...? The Giants reassembled and Tynes kicked it through the second time - Giants 33/Cowboys 31. A possible solution: not allow a time-out once the kicking team has broken the huddle or has set its formation. Question: What happened to fair play?

A second "disconnect", how 'bout Michael Crabtree, the first round pick of the San Francisco 49ers? This All-American wide receiver from Texas Tech was selected because he is thought to be the next Jerry Rice. You kiddin' me? Crabtree, as of the end of September, has yet to report. He wants more money, saying the $20 million that was offered was not enough. Crabtree and his agent - and, therein, may lie the real issue - said he deserved to be selected higher.

Well, excuse me! No one said the NFL draft was perfect! Example: Alex Smith drafted No. 1 by the 49ers in the 2006 draft and Tom Brady drafted #199 by the New England Patriots in the 2000 draft are miles apart in accomplishments. So while the selection process isn't perfect, how does a player, who has NEVER played one NFL down, believe he is worth more than $20 million? Players want to play; yet some agents seem to be looking out for the money to be gained, rather than the importance of the player playing. What kind of T.E.A.M. mate will Crabtree be? It seems to me that he could live very nicely on $20 million. Question remains what happened to fair play?

Will you see the big picture when making these kinds of decisions?

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