Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Exit the tuna and other football miscellany

Never one to shun the spotlight, Bill Parcells has retired. On a day that should belong to the Colts and the Bears, the New York-centric media went nuts for a story that had an NYC hook.

Maybe this time Parcells stole Tony Dungy’s thunder by accident. It still brought back bad memories of the way that the Tuna flirted with Tampa Bay while Dungy was still their head coach. If the Colts can win SB XLI, Dungy will have the last laugh. Parcells’s failure in Dallas stands in stark contrast to the success that Dungy has had in Indy.

The Parcells’s coaching tree has been more successful than the Dungy tree (so far.) But the Dungy guys all seem to like each other. The Parcells’s group seems like a highly dysfunctional family.

The Patriots acted like sore losers. Big deal. It is not like the press gave Manning and Dungy any credit for the classy way they handled defeat in years past.

Far too many sportswriters are sludge-swilling bottom feeders. They enjoy shooting the wounded. I see no reason why any athlete should smile politely at them while they go about their dirty business.

Some ex-player I never heard of was talking about Parcells on the NFL network. He chalked up the Tuna’s problem to “a new generation of players” who just will not tolerate old school coaching. Hence, it was Parcells’s job to adapt to T.O., not visa-versa. No one pointed out that Troy Brown has three rings while T. O., Michael Vick, Chad Johnson, and Plaxico Burress have ZERO.

I love the idea of the NFL network: Year round coverage of football without having to listen to yapping about the NBA or Michelle Wie. The NFL Films programs are first-rate. But their on-air talent is just abysmal. Deion Sanders? Bryant Gumbel? It is almost as bad as the ESPN crew. (Bristol wins because Rich Eisen could not be as bad as Kornheiser if he tried.)

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