Friday, November 21, 2008

I'm moving on up in the world of blogging...this is my last post here.

Check out my new blog

thanks for the memories here...

Friday, October 17, 2008

NFL = Flag Football?

I couldn't help but to post this enjoyable article. Read with great pleasure and soak in the truth written...

Two-hand touch? To Polamalu, NFL now flag football
By ALAN ROBINSON, AP Sports Writer Oct 16, 4:15 pm EDT
PITTSBURGH (AP)—Troy Polamalu wishes someone would put the football back into the National Football League.Polamalu, unhappy with the increasing number of fines for what he says are nefarious infractions that weren’t penalized, is complaining the over-the-top enforcement of contact-related rules is taking away what makes the sport so popular.
“It’s becoming more and more flag football, two-hand touch,” said Polamalu, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ four-time Pro Bowl safety. “We’ve really lost the essence of what real American football is about. They’re not really concerned about safety, because people have been doing this for … quite a few decades.”
The NFL, concerned the ever-increasing size and strength of players may be heightening the risk of serious injuries, is strictly enforcing all contact rules, especially those involving quarterbacks and helmet-to-helmet hits.
In a Sept. 17 letter to players, the NFL emphasized it would monitor “illegal and dangerous hits” in an effort to protect players.
Polamalu believes the restrictive rule enforcement might be making defensive players hesitant because they are worried a routine tackle will result in a major fine.
“You’ve got to figure out how to tackle people a new way. … It’s too much,” he said.
Polamalu also wonders if physical players who once starred in the league, such as Dick Butkus, Jack Lambert, Mean Joe Greene, Ronnie Lott and Jack Tatum, could play in the NFL today.
“These guys really went after people,” said Polamalu, who has not been fined this season but has been in the past. “They were that way because the game was physical. Now, they couldn’t survive in this type of game. They wouldn’t have enough money. They’d be paying fines all the time, and then they’d be suspended for the year after they do it two games in a row. It’s kind of ridiculous.”
Polamalu said the only people who welcome all the fines are “quarterbacks and the front office.” However, the NFL does not profit from the fines, which are donated to charity.
Among recent fines, Cardinals strong safety Adrian Wilson was fined $25,000 for a hit that left Buffalo quarterback Trent Edwards with a concussion, and Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers was fined $10,000 for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan.
Jets safety Eric Smith was suspended for one game and fined $50,000 for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Cardinals wide receiver Anquan Boldin that the league called a flagrant violation of player safety rules.
Polamalu isn’t defending those hits, but rather the routine plays that are drawing fines even if there are no penalties or apparent rules violations.
The Steelers believe the $15,000 fines levied against wide receiver Hines Ward for non-penalized infractions on successive weeks were unwarranted, and team chairman Dan Rooney and coach Mike Tomlin contacted the league about them this week.
Polamalu is normally one of the NFL’s most intense players on the field and softest-spoken off it, but he sounded like outspoken former teammate Joey Porter, now of the Dolphins, or Lambert when he questioned the NFL’s intent.
Lambert, the Hall of Fame linebacker from the 1970s and 1980s, once said the NFL should put skirts on quarterbacks so defensive players would know not to tackle them.
“It’s just the essence of what NFL football is,” Polamalu said. “You don’t want to get into a sport that loses the core mentality. It’s like playing basketball and, `Oh, you can’t body somebody up. You can’t touch them. You can only play defense from a foot out.’ It takes away from the real athleticism of the sport. … football loses its identity.”
Polamalu also doesn’t defend players who take cheap shots.
“I didn’t mean being cheap, but (those who) don’t take anything from anybody,” Polamalu said. “Know what I mean? Joe Greene wouldn’t take anything from anybody. Joey Porter wouldn’t. When people came to our field, they knew this was our home field. Nobody was going to mess with us. … That’s the type of attitude I think is really awesome.”