Week 11 Review of the NFL


It’s splits-ville for Vince Young

It seemed to me and to everyone else that Vince Young had finally understood what you had to do to become an elite quarterback last year.  After his issues on and off the field the previous year, he was the backup to Kerry Collins going into the 2009 season.  Collins faltered and Titans head coach Jeff Fisher went to Young.  Immediately his skill set brought out the best in the entire offense and the Titans were off.  After a 0-6 start they finished the season 6-2 with Young.  Things began to look good going into 2010 that he was going to finally live up to his billing as the number two overall pick of 2006. 
All that changed after a disappointing defeat at home to the Washington Redskins.  Young was turnover prone and left the game with a season ending thumb injury to his throwing hand.  After the game, Jeff Fisher said something that most head coaches never say, even when there is turmoil in the locker room.  “Regardless of whether Vince is hurt or not, he’s no longer the starting quarterback.”  Young by all reports went on a tirade in the locker room after the game and it’s become apparent that Fisher has had enough.  Unfortunately owner Bud Adams loves Young and he will have to choose after this season between his quarterback and head coach.  One will be leaving after the 2010 season.

Zygi has had enough

We all knew it was going to happen.  Brad Childress was going to be fired.  What we didn’t expect was that he was going to be fired after one of the worst losses the Vikings had suffered in a long time to the division rival Green Bay Packers.  Now all eyes will be on the interim coach Leslie Frazier.  He has interviewed for numerous jobs the last half-dozen years.  This is an audition for a guy who has been touted as a players coach who demands they play hard on every play.  His only problem is that he is now the newest coach to deal with the Brett Favre question.  Will Frazier bench Favre at the first sign of trouble and hand the reigns to Tarvaris Jackson?  I say yes because you don’t want to show weakness during your one chance to show the league that you mean business.  For his sake he should make it absolutely clear in that locker room that he expects them to forget about the last two and a half months and focus on now.  The same goes for Favre.  He should be on a short leash and not be given any breaks from here on out.  If Frazier does anything less, he will be looking for a job elsewhere, but not as a head coach.

Why does there need to be a team in Los Angeles?

It’s a question that has been bothering me for most of my life.  I was aware that Los Angeles had two teams for the first eight years of my life.  Soon thereafter 1994 both the Raiders and Rams bolted and the second biggest media market was without a NFL team.  Since then the NFL has added teams in North Carolina, Jacksonville, Baltimore, Cleveland, Tennessee and Houston.  Why not LA?  Well, like with all of the state of California’s problems, it starts with the politicians.  Los Angeles politics screwed this up royally.  The nuts and bolts of it was that the city wanted a new franchise, expansion or existing, to make their home at the Los Angeles Coliseum.  Now if you haven’t been around Los Angeles, the Coliseum is a dump.  It would need to be renovated big time and the neighborhood isn’t exactly ideal.  Only recently the city decided to abandon that idea and that left the door open for others to make their plans public.
The company AEG, which owns Staples Center and LA Live in downtown Los Angeles, is ready to go forward with the building of a stadium next to the Staples Center.  AEG president and CEO Tim Leiweke is leading that charge.  There is another person that wants to build a stadium in the hills outside of downtown in the City of Industry.  Ed Roski, a billionaire real estate mogul and part owner of the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Kings is behind that idea.  The problem isn’t the stadium now, but rather does the NFL need Los Angeles and does Los Angeles need the NFL?
The crux of it of course has to do with revenue.  The NFL has grown into a billion dollar sport without Los Angeles.  Los Angeles seems to have been all right in the sport department without the NFL.  The Lakers are on top.  The Kings have made a resurgence the last couple years in the NHL.  Just about everyone is a Dodgers fan.  If you want to watch football, there are many ways to watch your favorite team.  Either on television, computer and cell phone.  Raider fans can drive or fly up north.  The same for 49ers fans.  Charger fans can do the same going south.
Los Angeles wants some extra cash and the NFL wants to get back into the Los Angeles market.  I get that from both sides.  I’m not gonna say that it will never happen.  That would be naive of me.  It will happen.  The problem with it is there is a looming labor fight and the NFL will not be thinking about expanding anytime soon.  The easiest solution would be if an existing team moves to Los Angeles, but that would still force the league’s hand to give that city an expansion team.  Nobody wins regardless.
The argument that fans are clamoring for a team is totally non-existent.  I polled some friends here in Southern California.  The question was ‘Do you want Los Angeles to have a NFL team?’  The results were 37% percent said yes and 63% said no.  To put it simply we don’t think about having a team of our own.  When the Rams and Raiders left, those Los Angeles fans are still fans of those teams.  If those fans aren’t loyal anymore they found new teams to root for.  I honestly believe Los Angeles football fans don’t care and assume it will happen.  Whether they will embrace in the short-term or the long-term is another question that won’t be answered until it happens. 

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