Good Morning, Broncos fans! Via the mailbag, a question from Brian:
I've always been curious as to why you don't see NFL players trying to play for the team that they grew up fans of.
Why didn't Brett Favre ever try to become a Cowboy? Why hasn't Aaron Rodgers tried to force a trade to the 49ers?
Now I understand the NFL is BIG business, or maybe the situation won't allow it (there is already an established or marquee player at that position), but as a fan fantasizing, I think I would accept a significant pay cut for the opportunity to play QB for the Broncos.
I've seen/heard/read players being asked this question in the past. Of course, some of them do get to play for the team they rooted for, ie. Terrell Davis fan Mike Bell, and CO native Mitch Unrein.
Aaron Rodgers wanted to be drafted by the Niners, but they spurned him for Alex Smith. He's been pissed at them ever since, and can you blame him?
What every player says is that as soon as they get drafted, their feelings change. It's all about their team, and after all, that's who wanted them.
I'd have to think that if Al Davis rose from the dead (again) and offered me millions of dollars to do something on behalf of the Raiders, I'd go right ahead, and throw in a "GFY, Horse Face" for good measure.
I think it's hard for us, as fans, to put ourselves in the shoes of players, especially as it pertains to loyalty.
It's important to remember, that it's not just a matter of who's providing the paycheck, and that you're now part of a new team, where everyone has a common goal, but the team is also responsible for choosing you and helping you live out your dream.
Unless you're drafted in the first round, there's a valid case that your new team valued you more than any other one did. That has to go a long way toward trumping your own prior rooting interests.
Thanks for the great question, Brian, and keep them coming!
Brian McIntyre agrees that releasing D.J. Williams and Joe Mays would appear the most obvious cap- and cash-saving moves for Denver to make this offseason, and they could also change gears by restructuring any of Peyton Manning, Champ Bailey, and Elvis Dumervil's deals.
Mays says he should be ready to go in time for training camp, but again, it remains to be seen whether he's still with the team at that point. He's due $500K in guarantees this year, so that could favor a renegotation over an outright release.
Remember how Roger Goodell and Jeff Pash made such a show of their $1 salaries during the lockout of 2011? Turns out the league paid Goodell $29.49M and Pash $8.8M that year for their hardships.
Nine days after they claimed him off waivers from the Lions, the Rams already tired of Titus Young's act and dumped him Friday.
The Eagles signed former Bills and Raiders offensive lineman Ed Wang, the first Chinese-American player ever drafted into the league.
Following their final year at the Metrodome, the Vikings will play outdoors at TCF Bank Stadium, which is the home of the Gophers, for the 2014 and 2015 seasons while they await construction of a new home in Minneapolis.
Steve Palazzolo examines PFF's top free agent guards and centers, led by LOLJets guard Brandon Moore, he of Buttfumble fame. Gordon McGuinness had floated Moore as a potential target for Denver a week ago.
Bucky Brooks thinks the Giants, Bears, Packers, Ravens, and Bills would be good scheme fits for Manti Te'o.
Matt Waldman rightfully grates at the closeminded notion expressed by Doug Farrar and Mel Kiper that the next surprise star quarterback a la Russell Wilson isn't out there to be found. And as if on cue, Farrar discusses the pro prospects of the top QBs in the 2013 Draft, and whether there's another Wilson.
As the Combine looms, here are Mike Mayock's top five prospects at each position.
While many hold up boxing as an example of what fate may await football if its safety issues aren't handled well (and I've been guilty of this at times), Jonathan Mahler reminds us that it wasn't the brutality of boxing that destroyed its popularity; rather, it was the corruption, unpredictable length of bouts, and thus, the reluctance of advertisers and network TV execs to support the sport.
A whole sheet of gold stars to anyone who can correctly answer Chase Stuart's trivia question about mobile quarterbacks, even with the clues he offers.