Weekly NFL News and Notes Column

Hondo S. Carpenter

 

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There is a lot of talk about the NY/NJ Super Bowl. It got the votes, but I haven’t talked to one NFL person who likes it. Not one.

 

There is nothing but praise for Chad Henne, the former UM and current Dolphin QB. For those of you who haven’t ever met Henne, he is a super kid. They love him in Miami and the players and management all feel the same. The Dolphins will be much improved and the likeable youngster will have a lot to do with it.

 

Brett Swenson struggled with kickoffs at MSU. If he can fix that, he can beat Adam Vinatieri. Swenson’s kickoffs are what stands between him and making the team. If Swenson struggles like Vinatieri does, the vet will get the job.

 

Patrick Crayton, the talented WR in Dallas, is stuck in what is now a crowded Cowboy locker room at his spot. Jerry Jones will not admit failure with Roy Williams, so Crayton is the odd man out. I have heard from two sources that the Broncos and the Bears could make a deal. One person said, “I think both teams are waiting for Jerry (Jones) to have to cut him, but if not, those are both logical places.”

 

Here is my NFL/MSU note for the week since it is called Spartan Nation. I was talking with an AFC scout this week and I mentioned (someone had brought it up to me) how many Spartans have been drafted in the last three years here and at Cincinnati. He told me, “Look at all the kids Dantonio recruited at Cincy that are getting picked and all that aren’t at MSU from the talent his predecessor had. This will be his first true class of kids and after this season wait and see what is next.” I asked this scout who the top two prospects for the 2011 draft are and he said, “Rucker and Jones of course, and there are some others who could really help themselves.”

 

I have always said and maintained that I root for good people. One of the best I have ever met and got to know is former UM and current Dolphin Jake Long. Long is a class act and as great of a young man as a football player. He is doing great on and off the field in Miami and as one member of the organization told me recently, “How big is that for Chad to have his college left tackle on his line in the pros?” I agree. I am really feeling the love for the Dolphins in 2010.

 

The Raiders filed a grievance against JaMarcus Russell this week for some of his signing bonus. If they get awarded any of that, it would be beyond foolish and a complete shock. How far reaching is that? You would see me on the cover of Victoria Secret is some thong before that would happen. 

 

On Friday, Saints RB Reggie Bush may hear the NCAA say his national title and stats will be wiped out for the 2005 season. If it happens, and I frankly never trust the NCAA to do the right thing against a major school, look for the Heisman committee to push for Bush to give it back.

 

Folks in Buffalo continue to privately tell people to not count out Brian Brohm. One of them told me, “He makes plays. Then you kind of scratch your head, but he has all the tools. If he can stick with it and eliminate mistakes he shows flashes of greatness.”

 

Interesting Ben Roethlisberger note…a source very close to the commissioner told me today, “He is so sick of talking about it. He can’t do an interview or even get a hot dog without someone bringing it up. Guys who make future mistakes may pay even more dearly. He has had it with guys disrespecting the league, owners, and other players. I think out of this you may see more marketing of the good guys off the field.” I would totally support that.

 

Tim Tebow isn’t ready…yet, but Orton and Quinn have to be looking over their shoulders. He is going to be a big money first rounder and the players already love him and so does the staff. Not to mention, he is already a fan favorite.

 

Lovie Smith will have to ride Mike Martz in 2010. He is not that kind of coach. I spoke with a member of the organization who said, “Bringing him in is a high risk and high reward type gamble.” In Detroit, Rod Marinelli had to fix the defense and Martz had way too much power. Will Lovie control him? If he doesn’t, he is done in Chicago. 

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