Friday, August 31, 2007


If you think of the preseason as an appetizer, then the wait staff should be fired for making us wait so long for entrée. If I haven’t made my feelings clear about the preseason in previous blogs (and yes I know this is a topic that surfaces at this time every year) then let me make it perfectly clear now....the preseason is way too long and way too risky and way too expensive.

So I wondered, will this ever change?

Maybe, maybe not. But then I got to thinking, admittedly a dangerous adventure, and I said to myself, “Self, what would you change in the NFL if your could sit in Roger Goodell’s chair for just one day.

I kind of liked that adventure so I went with it and here goes – my list of changes I’d make if I were Commish for a day:

1. Preseason games cut from 4 to 2 and we add two regular season games and another bye for each team. Not only do fans get more for their money, they also see better football and the season is extended reaching deeper into the worst month of the year – February. Sorry Valentine…wherever you are.

2. Rosters are currently capped at 53 and each team has a practice squad of 8. Stretch that squad to a dirty dozen and allow 7 of them to be added to the 53 man roster at any time. Longer seasons call for more reinforcements.

3. And speaking of the 53 man roster and my new expanded roster, if you are on the payroll, you can play. No more of this inactive player list nonsense.

4. Personally I don’t mind the end zone celebrations. Look it’s hard to score a touchdown. And while I respect those that just hand the ball back to the official more than those that become dancing fools, there are some players that are actually funny. If they want to celebrate then celebrate. Just don’t delay the game or try to show up an opponent. Dance like there’s no one watching…but we will be.

5. If coaches want to wear suits, let them wear suits whenever they want. It brings a degree of class to the sideline. Does everyone who works for a NFL team have to wear NFL logo merchandise? Does that really inspire you to go out and buy a hat if Brian Billick wears one to protect his head from the rain?

6. The tuck rule should be permanently tucked away. It’s a fumble! You have to wonder though, would the Patriots have become the modern day dynasty that they are without that infamous call.

7. Blocking in the back on punts/kickoffs…they call this penalty way too much. If it affects the play, call it. If not, look the other way. Ease up on that throttle Mr. Referee.

8. Road trips to Europe are history. Just admit it was a bad idea and stay home and play. Tax payer dollars built most of these new stadiums and the local governments and their respective economies deserve to reap the value from these games.

9. Hire someone to unscrew Ernest Byner’s placard at M&T, drive 35 miles south and screw it into some inviting wall at Fed Ex Field.

10. Well I’ve gotta run…my day as Commish is running out and I’ve got to prepare that powerful and moving speech to the Hall of Fame voters. We need to get our boy Art a bust in Canton.


Anonymous said...

Well said, Tony!! I think if you have to cut your squad to 53, then all should be eligible to play. Since there are so many more injuries in the NFL, or at least it seems that way, it could be possible that a team could run out of position players during a game. Do we want to see Kyle Boller play guard or tackle because we ran out of guards or tackles?

Also, a fumble is a fumble. I never understood the rationale that the ground caused a fumble, so that is acceptable.

Preseason games should be free or cut down to 2. The people at FedEx should get their money back for the called game. However, you know the NFL will never go for that.

I agree that coaches should wear what they want as long it is clean, neat and professional. Bill Belichek should be suspended for wearing those sloppy hoodies.