The Super Bowl was three months ago, but we're still a long way away from watching another meaningful football game in 2008. That said, with the draft in the books, the personnel acquisition phase of the offseason is nearly complete and teams largely are already what they're going to be this season. Who's on their way up? Who's on their way down? Here's our post-draft assessment of the team in each division poised to make the biggest move this year, in either direction.
• What a ridiculous story the
I'm no big fan of Parcells' penchant for Jedi mind tricks, but what kind of greeting did Taylor really expect from a guy who has always been all about football? All Parcells knows about Taylor at this point is that he's more intent on launching his Hollywood post-playing career than he is preparing for the '08 season. Not showing your face around the Dolphins' complex except for a drive-by meet and greet isn't going to earn Parcells' respect.
When Taylor wants to act like an active and committed player who still has football as his top priority, Parcells will likely accord him the status he has earned within the Miami organization. But if Taylor deems it more important to make like the retired
• Not only did I not know that
• Cardinals fans are going to love the team's first-round pick, Tennessee State cornerback
"Not only am I going to bring the athletic ability and hard work and determination, I am also a people person. I am outgoing, very lovable, fun to be around, a man of great character. I'm just a lovable guy.''
Sounds a bit like his first awkward effort at writing a personal profile for Match.com.
Maybe because those were two of the most recent examples of great running backs who we knew were done before they knew they were done.
• Speaking of great stories, the Lions drafting Army defensive back
I'm just wondering if there will be the same amount of fanfare in late August if he would wind up having his name listed in the agate type of the transactions column on roster cut-down day?
• There was absolutely nothing not to love about Kansas City's 12-man draft class, which lead the league in terms of star power, potential rookie impact and solid long-range roster-building. But I still don't know how the Chiefs close the huge gap between themselves and San Diego in the AFC West without giving themselves more starting options than
Maybe the Chiefs should talk to the Bears and Ravens about a good team's limitations when it doesn't get quality quarterbacking.
• Spending draft weekend in Dallas gave me the chance to absorb plenty of the wit and wisdom of
On whether or not first-round pick
"He's 6-feet tall, 207 pounds,'' Jones said. "Y'all probably heard this, gathered this, but he's thick in the bottom, from the waist down. And we've had another one that was this size, not in height, but about that weight that carried the ball 25, 30 times a ballgame -- Emmitt Smith.''
On the risk of trading for
"There's a lot of me that under certain circumstances would rather have somebody who's been knocked down a lot and gotten back up and proven they can get back up. I'd rather be with him or her in tight situations than someone who'd never been knocked down. That does create some resolve, especially in football.
"I'm not trying to sound like some preacher here, but I have always been one that just because a person has made some bad decisions, do not close your eyes and ears and decision-making to giving them an opportunity.''
• You might recall that I was fairly confident throughout the course of the regular season that the '07 Patriots were destined for history's first 19-0 showing. I may have even mentioned it a time or seven in print. Alas, it didn't happen. Now I understand why.
It seems the Patriots have been rather methodical of late when it comes to the business of rescaling the NFL's mountaintop, and I missed the trend. In case you haven't noticed, since last winning a Super Bowl, the Pats have lost in the divisional round ('05, at Denver), the AFC title game ('06, at Indy), and in the Super Bowl ('07).
You know what that means. There's only one more step left to take in '08.
• I could be wrong about this, but Cowboys offensive coordinator and heir apparent head coach
Just another indication that Dallas head coach