06/10/23 Paul’s Preseason NFL Top Ten, and other musings…

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Those are not Chicken Nuggets. That’s a “wrap.”

We’ll be playing gen-yoo-wine NFL football in 90 days. So, yeah, here’s my Top Ten heading into the league’s 104th season.

  1. Chiefs
  2. Eagles
  3. Bengals
  4. Bills
  5. 49ers
  6. Cowboys
  7. Dolphins
  8. Jets
  9. Ravens
  10. Seahawks

Just outside the gate: Giants, Jags, Lions

Let the screaming begin.

Former NFL g.m. Bill Polian is a really smart guy. Here’s the theory he put forth on the radio Friday regarding modern running backs. Polian says that teams are making a mistake in devaluing the position, and that top-flight, difference-making running backs (such as, say, Saquon Barkley and Bijan Robinson) should absolutely be drafted in the first round. As first-rounders, you have them under contract for four years, with a fifth-year team option. You can then use the tag to retain him for a sixth season. After that, the numbers prove he is in decline. So you can either attempt to re-sign him at a lower number, or you can simply part company.

But on the other hand, if you draft an uber-talented RB in the third or fourth round, you have to re-sign him sooner and he’s calling the shots.

Viewed through this lens, maybe the Vikings’ release of Dalvin Cook makes a little more sense. His next stop? Miami, maybe?

Oh, by the way, the onboard computer that I balance on my shoulders says there is a 72.263 percent chance the Cowboys will bring Zeke back on a cut-rate deal. They should, IMO. There’s now no doubt that Pollard is the lead dog. But he has trouble staying on the field, he’s nowhere near the pass-protector Elliott is, and Dallas’ offense still requires a short-yardage and goal line hammer.  Do it.

Yeah, I’m a little surprised that D-Hop is starting his free agent tour in Nashville and Foxborough. Aren’t you? Interesting.

Rodgers says he’s having fun. That bodes well for the Jets. Rodgers is a better player when he’s having fun. And for now, his teammates on both sides of the ball are all-in.

I like watching golf on Sunday afternoons. I like it a lot, in fact. But a lot of my rah-rah has gone bye-bye and I’m not sure I can get it back. WTF? Jay Monahan et al scandalously screwed the very players who had been loyal to the PGA Tour and to him while also betraying the memories and families of 9-11 victims. And for what?

I’m not a “boycott” guy. But I will probably just find something else to do with my Sunday afternoons.

Jay Monahan will soon have to find something else to do with his weekends as well.

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Paul's Bio

I clearly have the attention span of your median fruit fly.Look! Airplane!

Sorry. I’m back.

It’s both a curse and a blessing. I’ve never bought this stuff about, “He who dies with the most toys wins.” But I do think that a wide range of life experiences helps us grow as people, and helps us better relate to other people. I’ve been fortunate. And I am beyond grateful.

I show up on time. I go like hell. I’m a good listener. I hold myself accountable. I own my mistakes. And I have a natural and an insatiable curiosity. I’m never afraid to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t. But then I try to find out.

The flip side is I’m a lousy ballroom dancer and my clothes sometimes fit me funny.

Stuff matters to me. I care. But while I take that stuff seriously, I try hard to never take myself seriously. As a result, I have sometimes been told, “Paul, it’s hard to tell when you’re serious and when you’re just having some fun. Which is it? Serious or fun?”

My answer is “yes.” But I think that is a legitimate criticism. I promise I’m going to work on that.

This has been the quickest and strangest half-century I’ve ever experienced. During that period, I’ve been afforded amazing opportunities in news and sports journalism across all platforms. I have taught wonderful students at the high school and collegiate level. Always, I learned more from them than they did from me. I’ve been a high school administrator. I spent ten seasons as a high school varsity football coach. I’ve been an advertising executive. I’ve hosted nationally syndicated television entertainment shows. In maybe the biggest honor I ever received, I was selected by NASA to be “Chet The Astronaut” for the “Land The Shuttle” simulator at Space Center Houston. (All I can say there, is “Do as I say, not as I do.” I put that thing in the Everglades more often than not.) Most recently, I just wrapped up a decade as a television news director, during which time our teams distinguished themselves in holding the powerful accountable, achieving both critical and ratings success.

What does all that mean? It means I am profoundly grateful. It also means I’m ready for “next.” So here we are. Radically Rational. It’s an idea I woke up with in 2017. I scribbled “Radically Rational” on a piece of notebook paper and used a magnet to stick it on our refrigerator. I saw it every day, and it just would not leave me alone.

I am second in charge at Radically Rational, LLC. My wife, Jo (also known as BB), is the president. Clearly, I have failed in my attempt to sleep my way to the top of this organization.

I hope you will learn that I’m loyal as a Labrador. But I will admit that this doggie can bite every now and then. My promise to you? I will show up on time. I will go like hell. I will listen to you earnestly and attentively. I will hold myself accountable. I will never be the least bit hesitant to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t.

But then I’ll try to find out. Let’s do it.