Fan Q&A: Cowboys chances, how much longer for Brady and the Rock in 2020

Here are your questions answered by yours truly.  You may not always agree with my response, but I promise I will always respect your inquiry of my knowledge by giving you honest reasons and thorough explanation as to why I feel the way I do.  You can participate in the weekly Fan Q&A by emailing your questions to beastman757@gmail.com

Do you think Dallas will make it as far if not further this year?

I don’t think the Cowboys will win 13 games like they did last year.  They appear to have a tougher schedule and you can make the case the other teams in their division got better.  That doesn’t mean Big D won’t contend for a championship because they definitely have the offense to do it.  If the season were to start today I would pick Dallas to win 11 games and make it as far as the NFC Championship game.  Dak will make more big plays downfield and with a healthy Darren McFadden it will give them the options to limit Zeke’s carries and preserve him for a bigger load late in the season.  There are huge questions marks on the defensive side of the football.  Dallas drafted some talented players, but will they be able to make a contribution so early in their careers or will inexperience get the best of them?  Vegas has the Cowboys winning 9.5 games (over/under) and around 9-1 odds to win the Super Bowl behind the Patriots.

How much longer will Tom Brady play?

My answer may surprise you.  I think there is a good chance this is Brady’s last season.  Here are my reasons why:

  1. Gisele– Gisele Bundchen is the breadwinner in the Brady household.  The supermodel expressed that she wanted her husband to retire after this past Super Bowl and she has leaked to the media that Brady allegedly played with concussions.  Tom has made it clear he wants to play as long has he can, however his wife is a bigger influence on his decision to continue playing despite him dismissing her desire for No. 12 to hang it up publicly.  Remember Brady skipping out on the White House visit at the last minute?  That was because of Gisele.  Don’t under estimate the power of persuasion this woman’s beauty possesses on top of being the mother of Tom’s kids.
  2. Jimmy Garoppolo– The fact that the Patriots held onto Jimmy Garoppolo says a lot about the future of Tom Brady. If New England wanted to trade Garoppolo there were plenty of suitors who had the ammunition in draft picks to pull the trigger and make the deal.  The Pats opted not to meaning Jimmy G is going to get paid.  Garoppolo does not want to sit on the bench forever (he will be entering his fourth season) and while he is under contract he has expressed a strong interest in wanting to be a starter, yet he remains a good citizen (for now) in Foxboro which may allude to the fact he knows his time is coming.
  3. Bill Belichick– When we speak of the Patriots dynasty it will always be linked to Brady and Belichick. You can’t have one without the other….or can you?  Detractors of the New England franchise won’t label each as the G.O.A.T. because they will only give the edge to the quarterback play or the coaching, not both.  So this is where ego comes into play.  Belichick can launch himself into a new stratosphere if he could win a championship with another QB.  Belichick is more likely to achieve that scenario as opposed to Brady going the route of Peyton Manning and hoisting the Lombardi Trophy while riding off into the sunset in an unfamiliar uniform.  In my mind Brady was better than Manning, but Tom is not the plug and play quarterback that Peyton was.  I think it would drain Brady mentally and take the fun out of the game for him to go somewhere else, learn an entire new system and team culture after having the luxury of familiarity for two decades.

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Will Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson run for President in 2020?

This is not as outlandish as it sounds.  No matter how you feel about our current Commander in Chief you have to admit his election has forever changed the political landscape.  There have been quite a few celebrities that have been voted into office, but up until this year none went straight to the White House without having prior experience as a government official.  I think the Rock’s campaign would do well with voters.  It has been established that he is second to none when it comes to speaking into a microphone live in arenas at max capacity.  He could appeal to America’s youth because of his career in the WWE and action flicks.  Given his Samoan/African Canadian heritage he would have the opportunity to build a multi-cultural coalition.  Yes he is Hollywood, but also has some conservative views which might attract some people on the right.  Now will it actually happen?  I don’t think so….at least not next election cycle.  The Rock has won a national championship in college football, he’s been pro wrestling’s biggest superstar and is currently a leading man in Tinsel Town.  So why not add President to his resume?  The Rock announced his candidacy for the Oval Office on Saturday Night Live with Tom Hanks as his running mate.  Given the venue I doubt it has any real validity.  Rock is only 45; he is in the prime of his acting career.  Unless he truly has a patriotic itch it makes no sense for him to throw his hat into the ring for Decision 2020.  I view this as a publicity stunt (similar to what Hulk Hogan did in WCW after Jesse Ventura was elected Governor of Minnesota) in order to suggest that he should be cast for a POTUS role like Martin Sheen or Kevin Spacey.  Click here to see Rock’s big announcement. Odds Shark currently has Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson at 100-1 odds to win the presidency in 2020.  Click here to see where he ranks among the other contenders.

Fears of Cheers: The Tebow Effect

20170405_205755I have been arguing for the last few weeks that Colin Kaepernick remains a free agent mainly due to his on-field performance combined with the fact that his market has yet to be determined just like a few other names in free agency who are still without a home.  I continue to make the point that the protest isn’t the reason, but it is a reason.  It might not be the reason you think.

It has nothing to do with being afraid of the President’s Twitter handle or the fact the NFL is mostly a club of older, white conservative owners.  These are the same owners that had no interest in Rush Limbaugh joining their fraternity after it was mentioned he was considering making a bid for the Rams several years ago.  Roger Goodell made the statement that someone like Limbaugh and his “divisive comments” were not welcome.  Goodell works for the owners.  He was simply their mouthpiece on this one.  There is fear, but outside of certain markets it has little to do with political ideology.

Kaepernick is not a “distraction”, but his following is.  Is Kaepernick’s potential upside worth the media sideshow that will follow?  It all looks too familiar.  By now Tebowmania seems like it was decades ago (unless you’re a fan of minor league baseball), but for similar reasons it is why some NFL GMs and coaches cringe at the thought of signing Kaepernick.

Teams don’t want extra persuasion from the press and fans in regards to who will be their starting QB.  This is what happened with Tim Tebow.  He wasn’t good enough to start for the long haul.  John Elway had to pull off the unthinkable and land Peyton Manning in order to satisfy the media and the fans who would’ve buried the Broncos otherwise.

Tebow went to the Jets via the owner’s decision (ironically Woody Johnson who has been outspokenly critical of Kaepernick) and it was a headache gang green didn’t need.  Tebow regressed as a passer (never started a game), Mark Sanchez continued to struggle (had his infamous butt-fumble), head coach Rex Ryan was heavily scrutinized for mishandling the quarterback situation and the Jets finished a disappointing 6-10.  Ryan, who never met a headline he didn’t love, loathed Tebowmania and immediately cut ties with the faithful fan favorite following the 2012 season.  Tebow would never play another regular season game in the NFL.

Let’s say Kaepernick is signed by a team that isn’t settled at quarterback.  If he doesn’t start his proponents will argue it is related to his kneeling from last season.  There are a lot of people that won’t buy the narrative that “he hasn’t grasped the offense” or “the other quarterback on the roster gives us the best chance to win” even though those could be legitimate scenarios.

Tebow fans and Kaepernick fans/haters are alike in the sense that they are ignorant when it comes to the football logistics on why these guys don’t have jobs in the NFL.  The good news for Kaepernick is he is a much better quarterback than Tim Tebow and should land a gig this fall.

Kaepernick would be wise to accept a backup role for less money in 2017.  An ideal landing spot for him would be a team that has an established starting quarterback with a solid coaching staff that will help him resurrect his career.  This will benefit Kaepernick down the road and should quiet a lot of the noise that will follow him.

Here are the best destinations for Kaepernick:

Seattle Seahawks- Kaepernick is familiar with the Seahawks and they are familiar with him.  He would be an excellent backup for Russell Wilson and he would mesh well with Pete Carroll’s culture in Seattle.  There would be no outcry to bench Wilson, one of the better starting quarterbacks in the league, in favor of Kaepernick who played for the rival Niners all those years.

Oakland Raiders- The Raiders were having a dream of a season until Derek Carr got hurt.  The Raiders already feature a talented supporting cast on offense and could use a better backup plan.  An organization historically known for sheltering castoffs and misfits seems like a match made in black hole heaven for Kaepernick.  If the fans in Oakland are upset about it who cares?  You’re moving to Vegas.

Carolina Panthers- Since Cam Newton takes a beating it would be wise for the Panthers to upgrade the second-string roster spot.  We saw what happened when Derek Anderson made an appearance last year.  Yikes!  Kaepernick would join an organization that has talent and stability.  It might not be popular with the fans in Charlotte.  Kaepernick knocked Newton and the Panthers out of the 2013 playoffs which probably upsets the Queen City citizens more than his kneeling.

Kansas City Chiefs- Hall of Famer and star of FS1’s Undisputed Shannon Sharpe believes the Chiefs are the best destination for Kaepernick.  Many feel that KC can only go so far with veteran Alex Smith and they might need to start looking at other options for seasons to come.  Andy Reid is a QB guru and who better to take on the Kaepernick reclamation project than the Kool-Aid Man himself?

Pittsburgh Steelers- Big Ben has taken his share of licks over the years and has hinted the end is near.  I’m not sure if the Steelers think Landry Jones is the future or even feel he is there best option at backup.  In Pittsburgh, Kaepernick would have a talented supporting cast around him if he had to play and if he did well who knows?  Maybe he could be the answer for life after Roethlisberger.  The only concern might be the circus-like atmosphere that the Pittsburgh locker room has been in recent years.  They might not need another non-football headline grabber.

New England Patriots- This is a long shot and it would depend on Jimmy Garoppolo being traded.  No one drowns out the echos like Bill Belichick and company.  If this were to happen Kaepernick would really have to prove himself worthy of making the roster.  Belichick likes to experiment and won’t hesitate to cut a proven veteran.  But if he were able to land a spot on the team what better place to turn his career around as Tom Brady’s understudy and working with an offensive mind like Josh McDaniels?  Given Robert Kraft, Belichick and Brady’s support of Trump could you imagine the head explosions it would cause?

The Elephant in the Room

I recall a time at a much younger age when tensions seemed to rise every four years when Americans got the opportunity to perform that good old civic duty of heading to the polls and casting their ballot for the next Commander in Chief in hopes of the newly elected taking the Land of Opportunity to new heights.  Like I said there was tension, but it appeared to fade once the results were final. The quarrels between family and friends ended as life continued.

That was the 20th century.  In this millennium we get to hate one another 24 hours a day from New Year’s Day to New Year’s Eve because the political circus is featured ’round the clock on cable news and social media. If you tune in regularly you will find those who hold or seek office become more polarizing by the hour.  And the more you give your two cents the more backlash you invite.  We used to have sports as an escape from everyday realities. Not anymore.  The sideshow in Washington has infiltrated that too.  In the words of George Costanza “worlds are colliding”.

Before it gets better it is going to get worse.  New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett and safety Devin McCourty have recently stated they will not attend the team’s White House visit which is a traditional invitation from the President to championship sports teams both at the professional and collegiate level.  Most people in the media saw this potential trend gaining life between Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling during the national anthem and the election of Donald Trump, however it doesn’t deserve the criticism or praise that it will receive compared to other protests and stands taken by athletes.  I don’t think Bennett and McCourty’s choice not go to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue should fall under either umbrella.

At the end of the day Bennett and McCourty do not feel comfortable going.  It could be for personal reasons or maybe they don’t feel like having to explain themselves to friends or relatives who have strong feelings and opinions about the direction our country is headed. In 2015 Tom Brady did not attend the Patriots visit with then President Barrack Obama.  Brady, a friend and supporter of President Trump, attended the previous three meetings with George W. Bush and even was seen at the 2004 GOP National Convention.  Obama just might not have been his cup of tea and he decided to pass.  Who cares?  I have more respect for people turning the other cheek and walking away rather than indulging themselves in controversy in order to receive attention or demonize someone else.

If you do not like what is on TV turn it off or change the channel.  If you don’t care for a particular protest stay clear of the crowd marching in the streets.  If you are upset about a scheduled campus speaker do not attend. Not enjoying what you see on social media?  Put down your iPhone and go do something else.  Perhaps you don’t want to visit the White House after winning a Super Bowl. Then by all means stay home. That’s okay too.