Mar 252014
 

So last night Washington football franchise owner Dan “the Klan” Snyder released a letter to fans hoping to dampen resistance to his keeping the “Redskins” name.  To paraphrase the letter:

I traveled (and paid some folks to travel) the country and visit some real life Native Americans.  I am now told I really like them, and I was struck by the difficult problems their communities face today.  So I am going to set up a charity called the “Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation,” because I want to help (sort of) and couldn’t resist using the slur in the name of the charity.   See, I really have nothing against those people and wish them well, so back off already and please let me keep using the Redskins name for the team that I own.

Still Obliviously Yours,

Dan Snyder

The letter and foundation seem like a desperate move to end the criticism over keeping the name.  It’s a PR stunt for his detractors and practically a bribe for the “Original American” communities.  Like I said before, the feelings about a great tradition do not outweigh the morality of showing respect by declining to repeat racial epithets.

Again:  If the NFL gave you a brand new franchise tomorrow (and the name had not been used), would you call your team the “Redskins”?

Daniel Snyder

I dub thee … Dan “The Klan” Snyder, for so long as you keep the Redskins name.

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Feb 042014
 

Even with this year’s new schoolyard pick format, the ratings for the NFL pro bowl are strong, but not nearly what they could be.  This year’s game seemed like less of a farce, perhaps because the change in format made it more interesting for the players.  The league is still not using the all-star event to its potential.  Previously, I gave you some more entertaining tweaks to the game (albeit tongue-in-cheek).  If the league is serious about continuing to improve the quality and relevance of the Pro Bowl, here’s one option that will get fans of all teams to tune in.

Two Pro Bowls:  Conference Runner-ups v. Conference All-Pros

The team that lost the conference championship plays against their conference’s all-stars in Hawaii the next week.  If they win, they get an automatic playoff spot next year.  This gives the league (and TV networks) you TWO Pro-Bowls, with something significant at stake.  The players will be motivated.  The fans of the other 28 teams will tune in to see whether it will be a little tougher for their team to make the playoffs next year — a definite rooting interest.

Under this system, this year’s Pro Bowl games would have been the San Francisco 49ers v. the NFC Prow Bowlers, and the New England Patriots v. the AFC Pro Bowlers.

2014 Pro Bowls:  New England Patriots versus AFC and San Francisco 49ers versus NFC

 

A guaranteed playoff spot. The team would still be motivated to play hard during the year because they would be playing to earn a higher seed. That bye week and home-field advantage is still highly coveted. If you can beat a motivated squad of all-stars, you certainly deserve such a reward.  I would tune in to see that every year.

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Jan 272014
 

It’s the last game and pick of the season. So far this year I’ve gone 161-104. Last week, I went a perfect 2-0.

The pick is in bold. I’m just picking the winners; spreads are for bagels.

Sunday February 3
Seattle Seahawks v. Denver Broncos 6:30 p.m.

The media will spend two weeks fawning over legendary quarterback Peyton Manning, but after this weekend he’ll still have fewer championship rings than his brother, Eli. The Seahawks faced a much tougher schedule this year. A good defense shuts down an offense that’s been feasting on cupcakes all year.

Bills, Dolphins, Patriots, Jets, Ravens, Bengals, Browns, Steelers, Texans, Colts, Jaguars, Titans, Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders, Chargers, Cowboys, Giants, Eagles, Redskins, Bears, Lions, Packers, Vikings, Falcons, Panthers, Saints, Buccaneers, Bucs, Cardinals, 49ers, Seahawks, Rams, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Bucs, Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams

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