Wow. What a week in the NFL. A lot of stuff happened. And you know what that means? A lot of opinions. Here is my take on a few of the crazier moves.
The Seattle Seahawks- Oh. boy.
As you now know, the Seattle Seahawks have parted ways with Matt Hasselbeck in favor of a Tarvaris Jackson/Charlie Whitehurst combo (Word was that they would try to nab Matt Leinert as the 3rd QB but the latest news has Leinert remaining in Houston). Whitehurst was the back-up guy last year and started a few games to meh results and Tarvaris Jackson is coming from Minnesota where he played back-up to Brett Favre (and not very well). I have heard many rumors that Peter Carroll inquired about Carson Palmer but we all know how that went (more on that later).
The Seahawks have also spent a good chunk of change acquiring Sidney Rice from the Vikings, signing him to a 5 year deal worth $41 million. I’m not exactly sure what they are doing right now. Sidney is absolutely a talented receiver and he left Minnesota for the pay check. But careful what you wish you, Sidney. You now have your money but at what “cost”? It’s unfortunate that he won’t have anyone throwing to him. Despite any “connection” that Sidney Rice may have to his Vikings teammate Tarvaris Jackson, I can’t imagine it’s going to help the Seahawks sneak in another NFC West title.
Of course, Matt Hasselbeck made out like a bandit in this situation and has agreed to a multiyear deal as the guy in Tennessee (where he will mentor Jake Locker, who could probably use a year or two of development). I think this is a great move for Tennessee. Hasselbeck may not be the greatest QB in the NFL but he will play a perfect role here and will help make the Locker transition smooth.
Mike Brown Announces Carson Palmers Retirement- I think I have heard it all on this subject and I maintain my position that this is absolutely the worst decision of the week.
In case you aren’t up to speed on the situation, let me download you as quickly as possible. Palmer, earlier this spring, declared that he would like to be traded from the Bengals and if he was not traded, he would retire from the NFL. In other words, playing in Cincinnati was something he was no longer interested in. Many people questioned how serious he was about this. Would he actually rather retire from football than play for the nightmare that is Mike Brown? He certainly doesn’t need the money as Carson nailed down a big fat contract a few years back. So, yeah, I believe that the guy doesn’t want to play for this organization THAT badly. (He even put his HOUSE up for sale). And who can blame him? Mike Brown has got to be one of the worst owners in the NFL and the team is always the punch like of jokes.
Here is what Mike Brown had to say about the “retirement” of Carson Palmer”:
“I’m not expecting [Carson Palmer] to be back. Carson signed a contract, he made a commitment. He gave us his word. We relied on his word and his commitment. We expected him to perform here. If he is going to walk away from his commitment we aren’t going to reward him for doing it
Here is my issue with the Mike Brown logic: He is a hypocrite.
Like almost every other owner in the NFL, Mike Brown has walked out on his own committments many times by cutting players that he had a contracts with. Just yesterday, he traded Chad Ochocinco to the Patriots for draft picks (I’ll get to that in a second). (Oh and by the way, Chad asked to be traded back in 2008…see?…hypocrite). He seemed to have no problem doing this, so how is it that he cannot trade Carson and GET SOMETHING BACK for the good of the team? This guy is an idiot and you know what? Carson Palmer just proved it (not that we needed to be convinced). How do you let him go without even trying to get a valuable piece for your team? How can you be that big of a dummy?
To those of you who think that Palmer is acting like a big baby, consider this: This is not a new development. Palmer made this decision 6 months ago and he relayed his wishes to the organization at an appropriate time for them to do something valuable with the information, including drafting another quarterback (since, you know, there was a lockout and stuff..). The Bengals then drafted Andy Dalton and from the looks of that move, I would say that they were prepared to let him go. So why not trade him to Seattle or Arizona and get something BACK? Everyone knows that these contracts aren’t iron clad. That is why they add things like guaranteed money into them. Because that is the only part that is guaranteed.
This is not about morality. This is about stupidity. Spare me the moral high ground Mike Brown, this is the NFL. It’s a business, not a place to slap someone on the wrist and teach them a lesson. Keep letting the Steeler and the Ravens destroy you every season and enjoy your mediocre franchise.
By the way, I went to school in Cincinnati. I even followed the team for a few years. It was exhausting and disappointing. I feel bad for Bengals fans.
Reggie Bush to the Miami Dolphins– When the Saints drafted Mark Ingram, Reggie saw the writing on the wall. I think we all knew this was coming and it’s probably not all that shocking. Reggie was offered a 2 year, $9.75 million deal and he will get $5 million in 2011.
But I offer you these two nuggets:
- According to Mike Lombardi, Bush was assured by the Dolphins that he would be the primary guy. I am not sure that Reggie can be the guy. It’s just not really what he does. He is part running back, part wide receiver. But I digress…
- The Saints have agreed to a deal with San Diego Chargers running back Darren Sproles, who will play exactly the same role that Reggie did. When Reggie was moved, I initially thought the Saints let it happen b/c they had Ingram. But the addition of Sproles confuses me? They now have at least 4 running backs (Ingram, Sproles, Thomas AND Ivory) who are going to be playing a role in the offense on a regular basis. How is this going to work? Sure, Sproles plays the Bush role out of the backfield with some special teams work but I am just scratching my head at this entire situation.
I like Reggie and I hope this works out. It smells a little bit like a move that was made just to be flashy but who can blame them? The Dolphins needed to shake up their offense and this move helps them do just that.
Albert Haynesworth to the New England Patriots- Textbook Belicheck move; taking someone else’s trash and trying to make it into treasure. I suppose if anyone can work with Haynesworth, it’s Bill Belichick.
Two things I like about this move. One, the Patriots need a pass rusher and it is a need that they did not address in the draft (despite the opportunity). Two, this cost them next to nothing(a 5th round draft pick). Bill just gave up one of his 8 zillion draft picks that he is storing for god only knows what reason. This is a hell of a discount on a guy that the Redskins signed to a 7-year $100 million dollar contract not too long ago.
Now for the bad news. The guy was a cancer in Washington. He had a bad attitude and, on top of that, he was in bad shape. This we know. Question is, how will he fit into the Patriots locker room? Will BB be able to smack some sense into him. I guess it ultimately doesn’t matter that much, because it only cost them a draft pick. Something they have plenty of.
Interesting that Albert pouted his way out of Washington because he supposedly didn’t want to play in a 3-4 defense and he gets moved to a New England where he will again play in a 3-4. Although Belichicks defense is a hybrid. They only ran the 3-4 40% of the time last season.
We will see how this shakes out.
Ochocinco to New England Patriots- Now this is a move that really shocked me. Not necessarily because I think it’s a bad idea-on the contrary, I love it-but because I hadn’t heard boo about it.
Be careful before you lump Chad and Albert in the same group. They are not the same. Sure, Chad Ochocinco rides bucking broncos, tries out for soccer leagues and dances with the stars. The guy is a character. He isn’t a cancer. He works really hard and he still has something left. And his physical type of receiver is actually what the Patriots are missing.
My dad used to call the Oakland Raiders the land of misfit toys. BB is making a run for that title right now.
By the way, Ochocinco was traded to the Patriots for a 5th round pick in 2012 and a 6th round pick in 2013. His 3-year contract will be restructured. May I just take this opportunity to once again point out that Mike Brown is a hypocrite?
Also- looks like Aaron Hernandez gave up #85 for Ochocinco. He will now be sporting #81. That’s a good guy, right there.
Greg Olsen Released from Chicago- In a move that no one saw coming, the Chicago Bears traded Tight End Greg Olsen to the Carolina Panthers for a TBD 2012 draft pick. In addition to trading Olsen, the Bears acquired former Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Matt Spaeth.
Alright , I get it. Mike Martz prefers to use tight ends as blockers, not as receivers. The acquisiton of Spaeth makes that clear. That being said, I don’t think this is the best move. Olsen was one of the Bears best offensive weapons last year and has the potential to be one of the best tight ends in the league.
While we can now see that Bears are looking to add better receivers to their core in 2011, I still find this move puzzling. Look around at all the teams who have effective offenses with the help of the tight end: Patriots, Packers, Chargers, Cowboys and the Colts to name a few. Maybe the problem isn’t the player. MAYBE the problem is the game plan (and Jay Cutler). Carolina made out BIG time in this trade. Good for them and good for Olsen.
Vote in the Aerys Sports NFL poll and share your opinion on the most shocking move of the week.
*Stay tuned for a Nnamdi Asogmugha reaction piece this weekend (I’m writing this as the news is coming in).