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Tag:Jack Del Rio
Posted on: November 16, 2010 1:32 pm
 

Garrard the reason for Jags success

D. Garrard is quietly having a solid season for Jacksonville (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

If you were to stop an obvious, but random, NFL fan on the street today and ask him or her how the Jaguars were faring this season, he or she would probably tell you something like this, “Oh, they’re totally not very good. I watched them on Monday Night Football a few weeks ago (against the Titans), and they absolutely sucked. Hey, aren’t they going to fire their coach?”

Even in Jacksonville, I imagine many of the responses would be sort of similar.

So, when you look at the standings in the AFC South today, and you see that the Jaguars – MY GOD! – have a winning record and, at 5-4, are only one game behind the Colts for first place, it’s a stunning piece of information.

And then you think back to Week 4 when the Jaguars actually beat Indianapolis, and you might think, “Man, how in the heck are they doing this?”

The somewhat surprising answer is QB David Garrard.

Garrard has never before been considered an elite NFL quarterback (and for good reason) but he’s quietly having a solid season – a 69.4 completion percentage (third-best in the league), 15 touchdowns, seven interceptions, a passer rating of 104.9 (second-best in the league). And the past two weeks, he’s played out of his mind, completing 41 of 52 passes for 602 yards, six touchdowns and zero interceptions.

What in the hell has gotten into Garrard, anyway? And is he an elite quarterback? That second query is the question posed by the Florida Times-Union today.

From the paper:

When the question was posed on Monday … Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio immediately backed off. He wasn't ready to go there because he knows Garrard's history is more roller-coaster than sustained excellence.

In other words, Garrard's boss wants to see an extended period of success, not a four-game snapshot, before putting his quarterback in a category with Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Philip Rivers.


Del Rio praised the "decisiveness" of Garrard doing a better job of getting the ball out early. He lauded him for playing at a "high level," but he wasn't biting on him being an elite quarterback. Smart move.


It is a smart move, because Garrard has not shown this kind of sustained excellence before. Can he keep it up? Probably not. But the fact we’re even using the words “David Garrard” and “elite quarterback” in the same sentence in a non-sarcastic way is not something anybody is used to doing.

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Posted on: November 4, 2010 3:06 pm
Edited on: November 4, 2010 3:31 pm
 

Dey Took Er Jobs: We Talking About Stamina

Posted by Will Brinson

On Sunday, Mike Shanahan inexplicably pulled Donovan McNabb in favor of Rex Grossman. Were it not for Randy Moss and Brad Childress, that's all anyone would have talked about Monday and Tuesday.

To counter said distraction, Shanahan and the Redskins brought in Jamarcus Russell for a tryout.

As much as all of that reads like an Onion Sports story, it's the truth, folks -- and as such we have some sort of a quarterback controversy going down with the 4-4 Redskins.

Well, perhaps "controversy" is too strong a word. After all, Grossman isn't as good as McNabb, and Russell, who weighed in at 286 pounds, might have trouble making a Lingerie Football League team. (Actually, he might have an easier time getting on an NFL squad than that, but you see the point.)

The hemming and hawing of Shanny was the worst of it all -- he originally claimed that Grossman was better at running the two-minute offense (clearly a) a lie and b) patently wrong) and then decided that McNabb wasn't in good enough shape to stay on the field.

Regardless of why, Kyle Shanahan (yes, son of Mike) protege Grossman entered the game and immediately guaranteed the Lions a win with a fumble-turned-touchdown.

We understand now that there are locker room issues with Washington (I mean, duh, right?) thanks to Shanahan's decision, and that while he certainly doesn't have the problems of the aforementioned Childress, he's getting dangerously close to blowing up a Washington season that once had promise.

Will Grossman start for the Redskins the rest of the way home? We can only hope so -- after all, that means when the Vikings sign McNabb next year, Leslie Frazier will finally get the respect he deserves.

Whatever, that's a lot of projection, but is it really worth discussing whether or not Grossman should replace McNabb in the starting lineup? Of course it's not -- if the possibility of David Carr replacing Alex Smith in San Francisco a mind-boggling mishap of mediocrity (and it was, as I said and then we saw) then this is just a slap in the face to common sense.

Most coaches go out of their way to avoid quarterbacks controversies like these -- somehow, Mike Shanahan has managed to invite one, while also insulting his veteran leader and the only talented quarterback on the roster.

No amount of humiliation-based motivation is worth the obvious downside to this. And swapping out McNabb for Grossman at this stage would just be proof that Shanny had his brain surgically replaced with Dan Snyder's.

****


Speaking of the 49ers, Troy Smith did a pretty good job of making sure that David Carr won't be seeing the field as a starter (there are always injuries, and he'll seemingly always get a job based on just potential, sigh) any time soon.

But what happens when Alex Smith returns in a few weeks? At that point, Troy will have had multiple weeks with reps as the starter and possibly even more wins than Alex, in many less tries.

It's not like we're discussing someone off the street either -- Troy has the credentials to a degree (the Heisman Trophy has to be worth something, right???) and reasonable stats when he started. His accuracy isn't as good percentage wise as Alex, but he doesn't cough the ball up as much, and San Fran is very much a Frank Gore-based team.

Just saying we shouldn't be so quick to roll right back to Alex just because he was the top pick a few years ago.

****
Matt Moore and Derek Anderson will continue getting the nod -- both moves are the smart play, in reasonably similar situations -- both teams are equal at -65 in point differential, both have star wide receivers, both have a talented pair of running backs that are underperforming, both teams have rookie quarterbacks they believe to be the future, etc., etc. The only difference is that the Cardinals are in a crappy division. And given the way Jimmy Clausen and Max Hall have played, which is to say, "not good," it behooves both coaches to allow their youngsters to develop on the bench and learn while watching for a little while.

****
Pants on Fire (Hot Seat Watch)

- Brad Childress: If I fired Andy right now, no one would notice or care, but the bosses would probably say "um, why did you do that without telling us?" and then fire me too. (Just kidding, I don't have hiring/firing power. And if anything, I'm the Randy Moss of the group. You should see what happens when my coffee isn't premium brand.) Thin ice for Chilly.

- John Fox: Someone asked Sean Payton if he would be willing to hire Fox as an assistant next year, even though Fox still has a job (technically). That's an indication of something, insomuch as 1-6 is at least.

- Wade Phillips: At some point, the awkwardness of Wade's eventual firing will wear off. Thank goodness he doesn't have a primetime game this week!

- Jack Del Rio: Betting against Del Rio when his job is on the line is like betting against Michael Jordan these days. Still, the Jags are going to be hard pressed to make the playoffs in that division with that talent and you have to think Wayne Weaver will at least explore something new once the CBA gets sorted out.

- Mike Singletary: The bright side of eventually losing the NFC West race to the Seahawks and Rams is that he'll be immediately employed as a six figure motivational speaker.

- Marvin Lewis: No one's really talking about Lewis' job being in jeopardy because it's too easy to place blame on Carson Palmer for stinking. But there's a lot of talent on this team and they're underachieving badly.

- Josh McDaniels: The biggest problem for Pat Bowlen is that admitting he messed up with McDaniels is about as fun as Mike Shanahan admitting he messed up with Grossman. Which is like full circle or something, man.

- Norv Turner: A win against the Texans on the road would go a long way towards keeping Norvell safe, particularly with divisional games coming up and Vincent Jackson returning. He should also give Philip Rivers 10 percent of his paycheck for winning games with a receiving corps only outflanked in mediocrity by the Bolts' special teams.

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Posted on: October 30, 2010 12:05 am
 

Mincey might not start after all

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

You’ll recall a few days ago when we told you that Jaguars DE Jeremy Mincey had overtaken former first-round pick Derrick Harvey for the right to start at defensive end for Jacksonsville.

Mincey Well, the storyline has changed a bit since that story ran.

As the Florida Times-Union writes, a few hours after the Jaguars made that announcement, Mincey – who, mind you, has never started an NFL game – broke his right hand in practice.

Mincey, who has practiced the past two days, is listed as questionable on the injury report for the week, and if he can’t play, it looks like Harvey could retake the starting spot.

From the story:

"The doctor told me I had really strong bones," Mincey said. "I just keep having these freak things."

Mincey said he suffered the injury during a pass-rush drill in which he came off a block too fast. He broke his right hand last year as well and broke his left wrist in 2007 and 2008.

"I told him to drink more milk," Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio said.

On a positive note, at least everybody is keeping their sense of humor.

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Posted on: October 27, 2010 5:08 pm
Edited on: October 29, 2010 11:45 pm
 

Derrick Harvey demoted from starting lineup

D. Harvey has been demoted out of the starting lineup (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

You know how much DE Derrick Harvey has cost the Jaguars since they drafted him with the No. 8 overall pick in 2008?

It cost them two third-round picks and a fourth-rounder (they also switched first-round picks with Baltimore, which took Joe Flacco with its selection that year). It cost them 33 days during which Harvey was holding out before his rookie year. And it cost them a five-year contract worth $33.4 million (including $17.4 million guaranteed).

And you know what all of that bought Jacksonville? A defensive end who has just been demoted to the second team.

That’s the word out of Jaguars headquarters today, according to the Florida Times-Union.

In his first two seasons, Harvey recorded only six sacks, but the team seemed satisfied with his run-stopping abilities. Coming into this year, Harvey lost 15 pounds in an attempt to make himself a better pass rusher, but that hasn’t come to fruition (he’s recorded exactly one-half sack this year).

Instead, he’s been steadily losing playing time to Jeremy Mincey – who, by the way, has never started an NFL game.

Now, we’ll see how Harvey responds to his demotion. Now, we’ll see if Harvey is even active this Sunday.

"I would expect a guy that faces that kind of situation to respond with a lot of pride," Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio said. "He should feel angry and channel that energy into a positive move to become the type of player that we want and need him to become."

And maybe he will play better. According to Tania Ganguli of the Times-Union, DL coach Joe Cullen said Harvey was “pissed” when he found out the news.

That’s probably the exact reaction Cullen wanted to see.

"I don’t quit on anybody,” Cullen told Ganguli. “I know there’s something in there that I’ve got to get out of him."

Who knows if that’s ever going to be more than just a less-than-mediocre defensive end who happened to cost his team a lot of time and money.

*On a side note, Harvey is the last remaining member of Jacksonville’s 2008 draft class, and now, he’s not even starting. Two years removed, that’s not what you’d call a real good draft year for the squad.

**On a second side note, Ganguli has a pretty good stat. On his career, Harvey has batted down two passes. This season, Mincey has three.

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Posted on: October 27, 2010 3:28 pm
Edited on: October 27, 2010 5:48 pm
 

Dey Took Er Jobs: 'What's Best for the Team'?

Dey Took Er Jobs takes a look at the various job controversies around the league. If you don't get the title, you don't watch enough South Park . 

Week 7 might see an unusual number of coaches actually doing 'what's best for their team' (Brad Childress' words) when it comes to quarterback decisions.

Or perhaps not -- many an external factor can change a coach's choice on who to start.

Let's begin in Minnesota, or, technically, in New England -- where the Vikings will take on the Patriots in a game that's got a storyline or two.

There's Randy Moss' return to New England after being traded from the Pats earlier this season, a monumental factor that's being even more monumentally overshadowed by the fact that every single bone in Brett Favre's foot has been reduced to little tiny pieces in the past week or so.

OK, that's a stretch, but we do know it's a pretty severe injury. Or, at least some of us do.

"You're talking to the wrong guy to rate severity," Childress said. "I just know how they were advertised to me, and I didn't use any [medical definitions] that weren't said to me."

Chilling words (pun intended) from a coach who seems to be more passive-aggressive than anything when it comes to making a decision about who'll start for him under center.

The pervasive understanding sure seems to be that Childress, if he had his druthers or any, ahem, "juevos rancheros" at all, would start Tavaris Jackson at quarterback for the Vikings. This would require Childress being in charge, though, and his description of Favre's injury ("an evolving situation") is pretty indicative that he's not.

Favre doesn't call the shots, of course, but it's pretty clear that if he wants to play, he's going to play, despite what he says; and yeah, the same thing applies to his streak of 291 consecutive games.

"I don't want to go out there for one play, I don't want to go out there for three plays," Favre said. "If I'm able to play, I want to play the whole game and give us the best chance to win."

That's utter baloney, regardless of how nice it sounds coming from Favre. He prides himself on his iron man status as much as anything, and it's pretty obvious that if he can get that next start, he's going to get that next start, even if it's at the expense of Minnesota's success.

The only thing that could stop him is Childress stepping in, telling everyone involved that Favre is going to take a week off, get rested and thereby putting the burden on Adrian Peterson to control the game and Tavaris Jackson to make one or two big throws without any huge mistakes.

It's a plausible proposition, but probably one that won't come to fruition. But only because Favre wants to keep his streak intact grit out a win just too damn much.

****


The Titans might offer up the spiciest of all job situations, because Jeff Fisher's shown in the past he doesn't give a flip who throws the ball for his team, as long as they help Tennessee win.

Kenny Britt's emergence as a potential true No. 1 wideout -- even if he's facing future discipline -- under Kerry Collins might make the decision easier.

Clearly Vince Young has potential and whatnot, but he's remarkably inconsistent, and Collins has had tremendous success with Fisher, most notably in stealing V.Y.'s starting spot two years ago and last week against the Eagles, when he lead a measty comeback in Nashville that featured Britt catching three touchdowns for 225 yards.

As long as Tennessee has Chris Johnson, it'll obviously be dangerous, and with a bye week coming after the Titans tangle with the Chargers in San Diego Sunday, it makes a whole lotta sense for Fisher to give V.Y.'s a quite convenient extra week of rest on his injured leg.

Will ownership want that no? Probably not. Will Vince? Definitely not. Does Fisher care? Absolutely not -- a win in San Diego gives Tennessee establishes the Titans as a legitimate threat to win the AFC (if that wasn't clear already), and "CSI:Nashville" knows that keeping Collins under center for now gives them the best chance to win.

At least until he does his best "Kerry Collins in the first of 2009" impersonation -- but that's what Vince Young's sitting there for!

****
The Eagles finally make their way to the bottom of this piece (or at least the middle anyway), and with good reason -- Kevin Kolb showed Sunday why Michael Vick should be the starter.

(Ironically, yes, that was while Collins showed he should start over Young, but that's neither here nor there.)

Look, we've said it plenty of times, but Kolb's plenty good and will play plenty of snaps for the Eagles at some point; he's just a different animal than Vick.

Last week we talked about how Kolb, even when posting monster numbers against Atlanta, still looked a little weak-armed. This won't change. Ever.

And Vick is, when healthy, one of the most dynamic quarterbacks in the NFL -- he'll start until he forgets how fragile his ribcage is and takes off on an ill-advised run down the middle of the field towards the goal line. Again.

****


Perhaps the best decision by any coach -- and it's an odd choice if only because of who the coach is -- will happen in London, where Mike Singletary decided to plug in Troy Smith as the starter while Alex Smith is out.

There's no telling if Troy will start for the entire two-to-three week duration that Alex is supposed to miss, but it doesn't really matter: Frank Gore would be a better option than David Carr.

Plenty of people probably weren't watching the stinker of a game he gave up in Charlotte, but believe me, he has no business taking snaps as a starter in the NFL ever again. It's like drafting Michael Clayton in fantasy -- just because he's a top pick and has tons of talent doesn't mean he has to succeed eventually.

Cut him and move on. (Oh wait, that happened in real life too. Ha.)

****
Los Pantalones Fuegos (We're talking about jobs so we might as well mentions who's seat is hot, no?)

- Mike Singletary: Right now he's getting a few too many votes of confidence. A blowout overseas at the hands of a Denver team that got torched by the Raiders last week could push him to the brink.

- Brad Childress: Weird how so many of the guys with quarterback situations are mentioned here right? 2-6 to start the season could make it worth Minnesota's while to see what Leslie Frazier can do as a head coach.

- John Fox: It's hot all season, but a win against the Rams would go a long way towards keeping him in town through 2010.

- Josh McDaniels: It wasn't the losses piling up, but the way in which they piled up (read: giving up nearly 60 points to division rival Oakland).

- Wade Phillips: Tony Romo's injury almost guaranteed that he won't be fired until the end of the season, if that's any consolation.

- Jack Del Rio: Losing to a Jon Kitna-led Cowboys team just before the bye could seal his fate. Kitna will do that to you.

- Lovie Smith: He's only slightly less delusional than Singletary. And he has four wins, so that helps.

****
Quickly …

- Needless to say, giving the job to Colt McCoy was the right call for Eric Mangini. Kid's kind of hard to root against.

- Max Hall's the starter for Arizona if he's healthy and that makes the most sense given that the only other option is still Derek Anderson. It's simple science, really.

- Apparently Washingtonians want Rex Grossman to get a shot over Donovan McNabb. Please go monitor a midterm, folks -- there's more value in that.

- Darren McFadden probably has his starting job back now, I think.

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Posted on: October 26, 2010 11:33 pm
 

Garrard cleared to practice after passing tests

Posted by Will Brinson

David Garrard passed his baseline concussion tests Tuesday, meaning he's been cleared to practice, and we have a full-blown quarterback controversy on our hands in Jacksonville!

Actually, that's a joke (and perhaps even a bad one) -- Garrard should start if he's healthy enough to go, since Todd Bouman is not necessarily the answer Jack Del Rio's looking for.

And Garrard was actually pretty reliable before his concussion, starting 38 consecutive games before missing the Jaguars blowout loss to Kansas City Sunday.

Trent Edwards is banged up as well, and, besides, Garrard is Del Rio's "guy" -- if he's going to a) go down in flames or b) save his job for the eleventy billionth time in Dallas this Sunday, he might as well roll the dice with someone he knows. It worked last time against the Colts.

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Posted on: October 21, 2010 5:53 pm
 

Givin 'Em the Business: Stupid, Soft Brains

Posted by Will Brinson

Givin Em the Business (yes we were on hiatus, sorry, we're back now) recognizes all the people that annoyed us from the week that was in football. Feel free to provide nominations either in the comments or by yelling at us on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL) .


Rank Who Why

1

Concussions
We like to blame aggressive players or equipment or rules, but you know who's really to blame? The stupid soft brain tissue that sits in all of our skulls. If it was tough, like a real man, then it wouldn't be so easily bruised and hurt and injured and we could just run around all acting like Bill Romanowski and slamming our heads into walls and punching ourselves. Dumb brain.

2

Brett Favre
Sure, he didn't release the alleged photos of his "Crocs" and he's doing his part to avoid answering questions (which, actually, is kind of irritating), but the fact that Favre has somehow managed to INCREASE the level of attention paid to him since the last time he stormed into Lambeau Field to stab Packers fans in the back with a Viking spear is just flat out amazing. Impressive, really, if it wasn't No. 4.

3

James Harrison
All due respect to a guy who's a great defender, but come on, bruh, no one's buying this retirement chatter. You get paid $51 million to play freaking football. If that means that a) you need to realize how lucky you are or b) just take it down a notch and not lead with your helmet on every single play, well, so be it -- there ain't anyone else out there willing to give you this kind of cheddar for this kind of work. 

4

Brandon Meriweather
Hey, Brandon, remember that scene in Good Will Hunting when Robin Williams ends up screaming, "IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT! IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT, WILL!" to Matt Damon? Well, pretend like you're Matt Damon and this is Opposite Day, because THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT! Alright, that might be a stretch, but if you hadn't gone headbutthunting at Todd Heap, there's a good chance we wouldn't have spent all week demanding that the NFL have some responsibility towards big hits. So thanks for nothing.

5

NFL Security
It's hard to define exactly how the NFL's investigation into Brett Favre's alleged sending of racy pictures should really progress. But it's not hard to determine that, because Jenn Sterger is the person who allegedly received pictures of Favre's "stuff" and A.J. Daulerio of Deadspin is the person who published pictures of the alleged "stuff," they should be interviewed. Certainly not before the pictures were released, but certainly before Day 25* of the Favre Croc Shot Watch. (*approximate)

6

Celebration Penalties
It'd be one thing if the NFL had solved the world's problems and completely eliminated the health issues surrounding football and then decided to attack the clear world-killing evils of excessive touchdown celebrations. But the league declared (three years ago) that players would be punished for big hits and instead decided to focus on tagging people for using cell phones in the end zone. To wit: last week, Miles Austin and Roy Williams got tagged for 15 more penalty yards because they used leapfrogs and Texas handsigns than Brandon Meriweather for acting like the Texas mascot on Todd Heap's head.

7

Jack Del Rio/ESPN
Now, this is about as alleged as anything that involves Brett Favre, but -- allegedly -- ESPN network people asked Jeff Fisher and Jack Del Rio to call timeouts during the Titans blowout of the Jaguars on Monday night. That would be swell and all except that a) it's so corporately creepy and b) it allowed Chris Johnson to break a 35-yard TD run that caused tons of fantasy owners to lose their week. HOW DARE YOU THINK THAT MILLIONS IN ADVERTISING MONEY IS WORTH MORE THAN ME WINNING A WEEK OF FAKE FOOTBALL, ESPN?

8

JaMarcus Russell
Even though his interview was a great get for Inside the NFL, it's still disappointing to see a guy like Russell be anything other than 100 percent humble in the face of what amounts to possibly the most disappointing career in NFL history. Not to mention his refusal to play anywhere other than the NFL robbed us all from millions of snarky "UFL weigh-in" jokes.

9

Trade Deadline
Not that anyone got too worked up about the whole deadline business -- after all, only Albert Haynesworth, Vincent Jackson and maybe Willis McGahee were candidates to get dealt -- but there needs to be something in place to make it spicier. The MLB and NBA deadlines are two of the most exciting days in their respective sports and, frankly, look at how much more popular they are than the NBA. But, no, no, seriously, can't we like give picks to people who make crazy trades at the deadline or something? We already had the most insane in-season trading year ever in 2010 and we could've used a little more action, if only to stop talking about Favre's shoes.

10

Vincent Jackson
Good to see you back, buddy! After all, you only totally hosed your teammates, your front office and anyone who drafted you in fantasy football. But, no, no with Malcom Floyd and Legedu Naanee getting hurt, you're probably not too excited about your bargaining position, right? Ugh. 
Posted on: October 21, 2010 12:19 pm
Edited on: October 21, 2010 12:23 pm
 

Del Rio won't talk about Monday night timeouts

Posted by Andy Benoit

Jeff Fisher basically spilled the beans earlier this week about referee Mike Carey requesting that the Jaguars and Titans spend timeouts late in the game to help Monday Night Football get through its final batch of commercials.

On Wednesday, Jack Del Rio – who, unlike Fisher, did use his timeouts – would not discuss the matter. "I'm not going to get into what Coach Fisher's saying. My answer is, this wouldn't be talked about if we'd just stopped them on fourth down. That's the only reason you're asking the question. We didn't make the play," Del Rio said. “I don't really care to sit here and rehash events of a month ago. Or three days ago, if you will. Next question."

When asked about timeouts again, Del Rio joked, "They say if you do this [call a timeout], we'll have you on again next year. So we got one coming, we're going to be on Monday night next year."

We know this: ESPN did NOT ask for the timeouts to be used. Jeff Elliot of the Florida Times Union was sitting in the Monday Night Football production truck for that game and said producer Jay Rothman never issued a request.

That doesn’t mean someone from the league didn’t talk to the Jaguars, though.

Here’s Elliot’s account of what happened:

As the Titans were grinding out a drive and running out the clock, the network was indeed in need of three more breaks. One would come as the game ended, but two more were needed either in the game or in a postgame session. No one wanted the latter as the game was dragging at that point. Some viewers had already turned it off, and the network wanted to sign off as quickly as possible.

A plan was formulated to do two postgame interviews in order to get the last two commercial breaks in. Someone even suggested that maybe Del Rio would call a timeout. To everyone’s delight in the truck, the Jags coach did such that. And when he called a second one, a cheer went up. But at no time did Rothman issue a request to anyone with the Jaguars to help them out by calling a timeout.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com