Clearing out the NFL notebook entering Week 13:
Adderall, a drug used traditionally to treat attention-deficit disorder, doesn't carry the negative connotations of some other PEDs. In fact, it is permissible in the NFL with a prescription -- and some players with ADD have taken the proper steps to get the green light from the league. Those who haven't followed protocol are prohibited from using Adderall, which acts almost like a supper-caffeine that can rev a player up to work out harder or to be more aggressive and more focused during a game.
Adderall and other amphetamines were moved to the banned substance list with the approval of then-NFL Players Association executive director Gene Upshaw in 2006.
Impatient owners in Buffalo (Ralph Wilson) and Carolina (Jerry Richardson, who has already fired his GM this season) could make strong finishes mandatory for their coaches, Chan Gailey and Rivera, respectively. I wouldn't be surprised to see either fired. Nor would I be surprised if Ken Whisenhunt were endangered in Arizona, and not just because of the seven-game losing streak the Cards are experiencing -- but because a year that started 4-0 now has disintegrated and includes two 14-point losses to the St. Louis Rams. Not good.
After a seven-coach changeover last offseason, I wouldn't be surprised to see eight or more this year -- and that's not even including Dallas, Jacksonville or the Jets, all of which could be in play with disastrous finishes.
Now onto your email:
ON THE CHALLENGE FLAG CONTROVERSY.
It's simple: The NFL is penalizing a team doubly for a relatively minor infraction of throwing the challenge flag when it's not needed. The officials hand out a 15-yard penalty and say a play won't be reviewed. Way, way over the top. The intent of instant replay is to get an obviously wrong call corrected. America saw Justin Forsett's knee and elbow on the ground. He was clearly down. Plays like that, for the integrity of the game, must be reversed.
Oh, I don't know. Lots of teams have weak position groups. I just look at how Cutler's playing, and the adversity he rises above to play that well.
IT'S NOT MY LIST.
Read the item in the column. Each week, I have a chunk of my column on NFL player analysis from Neil Hornsby of ProFootballFocus.com, and that was his opinion. Your opinion is shared by many, however, and I will pass it along to Neil.
BELICHICK DOES IT ALL THE TIME. COUGHLIN, NOT SO MUCH.
It's a little different. Belichick's done this often over the years. You need more than one hand to count the times Tom Brady's been in a total blowout in the middle of the fourth quarter. But Coughlin had a reason, I believe. His offense had been struggling for four weeks, and he has every right to use the game to do what he can to make sure his team is back on track for the stretch run. People wouldn't be killing Belichick if it were a one-time occurrence. Obviously, it's not.