Fitzpatrick worth $59 mil?

Fitzpatrick is going to have a lot of this to deal with the better part of the next decade.

Let me first say, I love Ryan Fitzpatrick. He has brought an excitement back to the city of Buffalo that hasn’t been seen since the days of the Flutie Flakes.

The Buffalo Bills decided to pull the trigger on a new contract for starting QB Ryan Fitzpatrick to the tune of $59 million over six years with $24 mil guaranteed. Like I said, I love Fitzpatrick and think he did deserve a new contract, but six years at $59 mil? Really? It’s averages out to a little under $10 million a year for a QB who didn’t come into his own until last year, his sixth in the league.

Fitzpatrick is, in my mind, a good to very good QB, he’s definitely in that 2nd tier of QB in the league. Ten million a year for a 2nd tier QB seems like too much.

In the Bills defense they have been without a playoff berth since 1999. I was 17 in 1999. I am currently 29. It goes without saying that Fitzpatrick has (with help) yanked the Bills back into being relevant again. He has put the Bills right in the playoff pictures.

When you take into account the way the Bills finished last year with him at the helm and add that to how the Bills have started this season, then I suppose I can’t fault them. This contract coming for a notoriously cheap owner like Ralph Wilson is a bit of a surprise though.

This contract, whether they meant it to or not, puts tremendous amounts of pressure on Fitzpatrick to perform. Whether he knows it or not he has to perform to a playoff level for at least three of those six contract years or the contract will be viewed as a massive failure.

Phil Simms can read minds!

Mr. Know-It-All himself. (Photo credit: Florian Schneider/Showtime)

On last nights Inside the NFL (on Showtime), Phil Simms said, “There is no way if Peyton Manning is given a clean bill of health — I’m going to go on that assumption — that he is going to let them draft Andrew Luck.”

Phil Simms is an idiot. He has to be out of his mind if he thinks that a 35-year-old (36 by next season) with three neck surgeries (two this year alone) is going to have so much sway as to keep a team from possibly drafting Stanford Cardinal phenom, Andrew Luck, with the #1 pick in next years NFL draft.

I’m not really sure how Simms can pretend to know how Peyton Manning would react in that situation. Peyton, you would think, is the only person that would be in the know on that subject. Personally I can’t imagine Manning would put an organization, that has done everything but chew his food and spit it in his mouth, in a position like that.

If Manning could walk into that front office and proclaim in no uncertain terms that he is going to play the next 3-4 years without his neck acting up, then maybe his words would be slightly more persuasive. He cannot, of course, make that statement.

Even if he could that is a situation where Colt’s owner Jim Irsay would say, “Thank you for your input, you can now see yourself out.”

What I mean to say is Peyton Manning would have as much say in if the Colts drafted Andrew Luck #1 as you or I would, which is zero say.

Some would scoff at that statement, but it doesn’t make it any less true. To let a star player who has one foot of his first ballot Hall of Fame career in the grave to make as important as possibly drafting their future franchise QB is asinine.

For Phil Simms to of made such an ignorant statement is ridiculous. Just another in a long line of drivel from a smug Mr. Know-It-All bitter ex-player.

A trade saved his life

I would assume most players don’t want to be traded. So when Jerome Harrison was traded from the Detroit Lions to the Philadelphia Eagles (for Ronnie Brown) a couple of days ago, he probably wasn’t jumping up and down with happiness.

Going through the motions and getting his physical done by Eagles doctors, they found something abnormal. ESPN is reporting (according to two league sources) that the trade was officially nullified because doctors discovered a brain tumor.

Sources also say that the trade itself may have saved his life as Harrison may not have received a physical otherwise.

Scary stuff.

HGH test for NFL?

According to the Associated Press (via ESPN) the NFL and the NFLPA have agreed to immediate testing of human growth hormone (HGH) for all players in the National Football League.

Except the NFLPA doesn’t seem so sure how soon this testing will actually take place.

From union spokesman George Atallah;

“We believe that we have to report back to our players, make sure that the protocol and the testing protocols are safe. Once we feel that way, which we hope will be as soon as possible — obviously the chairman and congressman Cummings can help us facilitate that — we’ll be in a position to start testing as soon as possible.”

I applaud the NFLPA for trying to protect their players, but it’s not how they make it sound. I believe that the players association is not protecting the players from the way the testing method is applied or if the test is reliable, but protecting them from the fact that large amounts of NFL players are taking HGH.

Say what you want about Major League Baseball, and they have rightfully received a lot of blame in the whole scope of performance enhancing drugs, they have at least faked an effort these days. The first professional athlete in the United States to ever test positive was a player from MLB. If the MLB test is instituted and up and running, why has the NFL version continued to stall?

The NFLPA, I believe, is afraid of what might ultimately produce many positive HGH tests among its rank and file. They have put up this front of making sure the tests are administered properly using the right methods, when it’s nothing more than an attempt to try and prevent any HGH test from happening at all.

I admit it sounds rather conspiracy theory-ish, but stranger things have happened.

Five Fights Wishlist

The punch that turned out the lights on Paul Williams.

With news that Ken Hershman was scooped up by HBO (and away from Showtime) to be the new president of HBO Sports, it makes me feel hopeful that the debacle at HBO Sports and their problems with reaching their budget and forcing some non-PPV worthy fights onto PPV is over.

This hopefulness has me thinking of some fights that I would love to see. Not that any of these fights will or will not be made, just my current wish list.

I want to see two men* in the trenches, pouring their heart and soul into every punch. Refusing to give into the will of their opponent and fight as if it was their last chance in the ring.

*Or women, I don’t discriminate I mean I have watched women fight locally in Sarah Kuhn and Jaci Trivilino in fantastic, hard nosed battles that were extremely enjoyable*

5. Sergio Martinez vs. Miguel Cotto

I realize Cotto has a fight on HBO PPV coming up (I see a Cotto KO victory over Margarito, btw), but I don’t care. The styles that both men have would end in nothing less than fireworks. I understand and appreciate a fighter that is over skilled defensively and from time to time it’s a joy to watch someone so skilled in that craft do their work in the ring, but what I really enjoy in a fight above all else is a fight. I think these two have the potential to have a 5-star fight. I have almost no doubt Maravilla would win, but I am also sure that Cotto would give him everything he could handle.

4. Yuriorkis Gamboa vs. Gary Russell, Jr.

Russell, Jr. is realistically about three fights away from being ready for someone of Gamboa’s quality. It’s just that to see Russell in the ring now you would think he’s a 10+ year veteran. He looks extremely polished with the whole package at his disposal. The 23-year-old has speed, power, defense and controls the ring like a grizzled veteran.

Gamboa is no slouch though. While I am high on Russell, I think Gamboa is the cream of the featherweight division. He, too, has almost unmatched speed and throws deadly accurate combinations. His major flaw is his ability to disappear for a minute or so in some rounds. He can get away with that against most because he is so superior in talent and quickness, but another grade A fighter would be quick to exploit that weakness. Continue reading “Five Fights Wishlist”

AJ Burnett, God help us!

Simple title, simple post.

AJ Burnett is starting for my beloved Yankees tonight in the most important game of this season for them.

That’s bad if you don’t know. AJ Burnett is erratic in a best case scenario. I’m hoping it’s one of AJ’s happy bi-polar pitching days.

“I’ve been proving people wrong my whole career, it seems like,” Burnett said.

Yes, you have been proving people wrong you whole life. The people who keep insisting you’re capable of being a very good pitcher. I wouldn’t worry though AJ, that number may have finally dwindled to zero after your past two seasons (10-15, 5.26 ERA in 2010, 11-11, 5.15 this season) and your month of August this year when you impossibly posted an ERA of 11.36.

His ERA in August is reminiscent of this seasons Jacksonville Jaguars offense; dismal.

As a Yankee fan, a realistic one, I have no hope whatsoever that Burnett is going to be competitive and so I feel safe in saying…we need a lot of runs tonight. Let’s make it a shootout. I believe the Yankees have more bullets in their gun than the Tigers do.

Lets just hope they aren’t blanks.