Quotes of the Week
“We are disappointed to learn of the incident today involving Aldon Smith. As this is a pending legal matter and we are still gathering the pertinent facts, we will have no further comment.”
—San Francisco general manager Trent Baalke, who has to be at the end of his rope with Aldon Smith, his troubled Pro Bowl pass rusher. Smith, police said, was belligerent with authorities at Los Angeles International Airport Sunday afternoon and allegedly said he had a bomb.
“It was a little emotional. I have spent my life here.”
—New Jersey goaltender Martin Brodeur, 42, the NHL’s all-time winningest netminder, after a 3-2 win over Boston on Sunday in Newark. His contract is up, and Cory Schneider is the Devils’ long-term goalie. So Sunday’s win is probably the last of his 23-year run in New Jersey.
“I don’t really buy ‘Draft Day’—it’s a shallow and evasive movie …”
—Highly respected movie critic A.O. Scott of the New York Times, on the new movie about the NFL draft. Scott reports the movie was made “with what appears to be the very enthusiastic—not to say domineering—cooperation of the NFL.”
“We have talked about keeping our own players and this is a positive for us. Alex is a quality person and player that truly brings to life what playing like a Brown means.”
—Cleveland GM Ray Farmer, upon matching Jacksonville’s five-year, $42 million offer sheet for center Alex Mack, meaning Mack will remain a Brown for at least the next two seasons.
Stat of the Week
We learned from the free-agent chase of offensive linemen this year that tackles aren’t the only golden children, and that teams will pay for quality on the line, and teams are freer with guaranteed money than they’ve been in the past. Of the eight players who signed for $30 million or more, the top four in gross dollars had every cent of the first two years guaranteed, now that Alex Mack is in the fold. Examining the value of the top offensive linemen on the market this season:
|Player||Pos.||2014 team||Contract||Guaranteed in first 2 years||Percent guaranteed in first 2 years|
|Branden Albert||LT||Miami||5 years, $47 million||$20M||100%|
|Alex Mack||C||Cleveland||5 years, $42 million||$18M||100%|
|Eugene Monroe||LT||Baltimore||5 years, $37.5 million||$17.5M||100%|
|Jared Veldheer||LT||Arizona||5 years, $35 million||$13.5M||100%|
|Roger Saffold||RG||St. Louis||5 years, $31.7 million||$8M||53.3%|
|Zane Beadles||LG||Jacksonville||5 years, $30 million||$12.45M||100%|
|Austin Howard||RT||Oakland||5 years, $30 million||$9.9M||66.9%|
|Anthony Collins||LT||Tampa Bay||5 years, $30 million||$9M||75%|
Note: The last two columns represent the amount of guaranteed money each player earns over the first two years of the deal, and the percentage of the total money in the first two years that is guaranteed. By my definition, a guarantee is a full guarantee, not just a guarantee if the player is injured and cannot play.
Factoids of the Week That May Interest Only Me
A couple, from Stanford’s spring game Saturday:
1. Barry Sanders, son of Barry Sanders, led all rushers with 12 carries for 68 yards, including one juking 29-yarder. The junior from Oklahoma City is competing to win the starting running back job and didn’t hurt himself Saturday. One of the competitors for the job: Ricky Seale, whose dad, Sam Seale, played a decade in the NFL as a cornerback.
2. Free safety John Flacco, brother of Joe, intercepted starting quarterback Kevin Hogan and returned the pick 58 yards for a touchdown. John Flacco is a fifth-year senior, a former New Jersey high school valedictorian who majors in biomechanical engineering.
Tweets of the Week
4 years a slave
— BrandonSpikes51 (@BrandonSpikes51) April 9, 2014
Jennifer Garner isn’t doing a very good job of managing the Browns’ salary-cap room.
— Bart Hubbuch (@HubbuchNYP) April 9, 2014
I sort of wish Oscar Pistorius would stop crying. Jeez. Enough.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) April 10, 2014
Cool! Today’s date is a palindrome. 4/10/2014
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) April 10, 2014
They’re right: It was cool. It would also be a palindrome if you made it “4-10-14.”
There’s like an 80% chance if Draft Day tanks at the box office, the Browns fire Mike Pettine
— Eric Stangel (@EricStangel) April 13, 2014