NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced Friday that NFL Network will air 13 games during the 2012 season.
Goodell said NFL Network will expand its current eight-game “Thursday Night Football” package starting in Week 2 and running through Week 15.
Man, it sure will be interesting in a few years when the NFL goes to a 24-game schedule with three-day turnarounds and 48 teams across four continents, right? As Bart Scott would say, CAN'T WAIT.*
Tim Tebow dwarfs Joe Montana at Super Bowl
Joe Montana sat on a director’s chair conducting an interview right in the heart of Radio Row here at Super Bowl XLVI.
He was, somehow, all but ignored. Five feet away sat the center of attention, the quarterback who caused crowds to push up against barriers and crane their necks and hold their camera phones high and disregard Montana and the rest of the celebrities in this third-floor hotel ballroom. Tim Tebow brought Tebowmania to the Super Bowl on Thursday, and this was Justin Beiber walking through a shopping mall, minus the squeals of teenage girls. “Obviously he’s got something everyone gets excited about,” Montana said. “If you win, that’s going to happen.”
Montana has four Super Bowl titles and a legacy that puts him in the debate for greatest quarterback in NFL history. Tebow has nine regular-season victories as a starter. It doesn’t matter. Tebow needed two cops, an entourage of handlers and press agents and the focus that lets him barrel through a secondary just to get from one interview to the next. Everyone wanted a picture, an autograph a quick moment of his time.
Sources: Peyton Manning cleared
Peyton Manning has been medically cleared by two doctors, including Dr. Robert Watkins, who performed the most recent surgery on the Indianapolis Colts quarterback’s neck, to resume his NFL career, sources told ESPN senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen and ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
Watkins, according to the sources, joined Colts neurosurgeon Dr. Hank Feuer in clearing Manning to play. One source said that Feuer recently told Manning, “If you were my own son, I’d tell (you) to go play.”
What remains in question is the timeline in which Manning’s nerve regeneration to his triceps will improve to the point where he is throwing passes in the manner that helped him win four MVP awards during his 13-year career.
Three days away from the Super Bowl, and again the story is about Peyton Manning. The Colts face a March 8 deadline by which time they must decide whether to pay Manning the $28 million option bonus he'll be due or cut him free. With Manning's health questions, his advanced NFL age, and Indy's option to draft Andrew Luck, it seems at this point a foregone conclusion Manning will become a free agent and the Colts will draft Luck.
The NFL season may be concluding on Sunday in Indy, but the drama there is only heating up. Just don't look to Rob Lowe for the latest scoop.
Super Bowl Shoutout: The Power of Tebow
Behind our table was a window and a small group of fans could see inside. They spotted Tebow. The crowd grew. And grew. And grew some more. A few people turned into about 40 or 50 at least. People who couldn’t even see in the window just stood there hearing that Tebow was inside. The crowd got so large it spilled into the street and police had to tell the fans to step back onto the sidewalk.
Tebow left and went outside where he signed countless autographs (Goodell later did the same).
Kudos to Tim, whose celebrity has lessened neither his approachability nor appreciation for his fans. But, we knew about this already.
The real surprises here are that Goodell joined him, and that people actually wanted his autograph too.
Tim Tebow has canceled an appearance at a revival organized by a controversial Ohio preacher, a spokesman for the star athlete said Wednesday. The Denver Broncos quarterback and dedicated Christian had been scheduled to speak at a three-day Columbus event in March led by televangelist Rod Parsley.
Tebow’s brother Robbie said in a phone interview that he was canceling the talk. Robbie Tebow said his brother’s speakers’ bureau hadn’t researched the event before saying yes to the invitation. “I know for a fact that Tim is not going to be a part of it,” Robbie Tebow said. “That’s being resolved.”
Parsley teaches that God wants the faithful to be rich. Last year, he asked followers to donate more than $1 million to ward off satanic attacks. In the 2008 presidential election, Republican Sen. John McCain disowned an endorsement from Parsley after learning the pastor called Islam an “anti-Christ” religion.
I'm not saying Satan attacks or anything, but when and if he does, I'm glad there are people like Rod Parsley who are well funded to, you know, give that ol' nasty Satan the business.
John Legend Sings a Tim Tebow Parody
Earlier today, John Legend made his way to ESPN headquarters in Bristol, CT to appear on First Take with Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith. There’s no doubt besides the upcoming Superbowl on Sunday, and Peyton Manning’s career-status, that the biggest story this NFL season was Tebowmania. Watch as the Grammy award winner performs a Tim Tebow-themed parody of his hit, “Ordinary People.”
Tim Tebow Refuses To Drop Pants For Jockey Underwear Campaign
NFL golden boy Tim Tebow is the newest face of Jockey. But unlike David Beckham and those who came before him, Tebow isn’t willing to drop his trousers to sell a few pairs of underwear…An underwear-clad Tebow was briefly displayed on the company’s website, but has since been replaced with an image of the Denver Broncos player fully clothed.
Marketing expert Stephen Bender agrees: “If you’re not going to show the product, then how is the campaign going to work? You are either selling underwear or you’re not.”
But Michael Kleinmann, editor-in-chief of The Underwear Expert, said it’s the public’s discomfort with a man in underwear that has kept Tebow zipped up. “Tebow should have dropped his pants,” Kleinmann told me. “I don’t know why everyone is so scared of men in underwear. Choosing a guy that people can relate to—a man’s man—is good, but even he walks around his house in his underwear… People just need to relax and stop being afraid.”
I was reminded of Acts 18:9: One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: “Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent, but put some clothes on, would ya? For my sake, I can see yer Johnson."
Tebow has big fan in Sean Salisbury
“”Tim Tebow has got what I can’t teach: A winner and leader,” said former NFL quarterback and ESPN analyst Sean Salisbury. “”We’ve got enough buttheads in this league who don’t know how to grab somebody by the throat and tell him to play. This kid does. Now, his mechanics are awful. Whoever taught him to yank his (front) arm through _ I know it wasn’t Denver _ did him a great disservice. It’s like trying to swim upstream. But I can promise you this: Give me four months with that kid and he’ll complete 60 percent of his passes next year. Because he wants to work. He’s one of those guys who stays the course.’’
Not sure that I trust Sean Salisbury as a QB guru. His career accuracy percentage is 55.1%. And then there's the anger management and sexting thing, after which Salisbury was suspened from ESPN. Recently, Salisbury
was dropped by parted ways with the Lingerie Football League. Without the connections to women's lingerie, what good is he, really?
You're dead to me, Sean Salisbury.
The QB Files: Tom Brady Vs. John Elway
As the only other quarterback to start five Super Bowls, John Elway seems like the perfect place to start when evaluating Tom Brady’s Super Bowl legacy.
The story of Elway in the Super Bowl is essentially a tale of two quarterbacks. The young and inexperienced raw talent that helped his team to three Super Bowls in his first seven seasons (taking a beating in each) and the wily veteran who rode Terrell Davis to a career-capping pair of victories.
This one was not particularly close. Elway was an all-time great, and the two Super Bowls victories to end his career were a tremendous story, but on the biggest stage he cannot match Brady’s resume.
Tough (impossible?) to find fault with this one. During Brady's first three Super Bowls, he was complemented by very few offensive stars (Corey Dillon had one big year in 2004), just like Elway was during his early SB trips. The body of work from Brady's SB performances has simply been better than Elway's, and that's without even getting into the rings.
Broncos deny Raiders from talking to Smith
The nice play is over in the AFC West. It didn’t last long.
When Dennis Allen was hired to be the Oakland Raiders’ head coach last week, his former boss John Fox wished Allen well. And, now, Allen is on his own.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Broncos have denied the Raiders permission to speak to linebackers coach Richard Smith for the Oakland defensive job.
Go ahead and chuckle. After losing Dennis Allen, you deserve it. The serious part of this move, though, is that it tells you how much the Broncos value Richard Smith. Let's say Del Rio leaves after one year? Who do the Broncos turn to? I think we've got our answer. (h/t, RSH)