When you looked to the heavens this past weekend while giving
thanks for the season's first full slate of football games, you
didn't see any puffy wisps of cloud spelling out college scores
or NFL insider info. We mention this simply to illustrate that
skywriting just might be the only type of coverage that SI won't
offer this season.
In our 46th year of covering autumn's game, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED
will provide its most comprehensive look yet at the
ever-burgeoning world of football. You will be, as always, in
good hands; the same writers you've trusted for looks inside the
huddle and over the coach's shoulder will also serve as your
television sages and Internet guides.
In the case of SI senior writer Peter King, this will involve
doing triple duty. In addition to filing his weekly INSIDE THE
NFL column, King will return to the airwaves on CNN's NFL
Preview (an hourlong show airing on Sundays at 10 a.m. ET) and
to cyberspace with his CNNSI.com column, Monday Morning
Quarterback, which, among other things, will feature his "Ten
Things I Think I Think This Week." Given a standard King
workday--a 7:15 a.m. interview with Oakland Raiders coach Jon
Gruden, followed by a dip into his Web-site mailbag at 8:45,
followed by a flurry of phone calls lasting well past noon,
followed by an hourlong Internet chat at 2 p.m., followed by a
quick stop at his daughter Laura's field hockey game, followed
by a taping of his appearance on that night's Charlie Rose
show--10 things will have to suffice. "CNN and the Web site give
SI more outlets for the information our readers want," says
King. "I might make 100 calls in a week. Now I get to use a lot
more of the stuff I uncover."
Not that such added duties will diminish our efforts inside
these pages, as evidenced by this week's menu. Sample Michael
Silver's look at Jacksonville Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin, John
Ed Bradley's piece on Indianapolis Colts rookie running back
Edgerrin James and Jack McCallum's story on the rematch of last
season's NFC Championship Game between the Minnesota Vikings and
the Atlanta Falcons. On the college scene, partake of the
feature on Tennessee running back Jamal Lewis by Tim Layden, who
doubles as a CNN college football insider (11:30 a.m.
Saturdays). Or you can turn to the INSIDE columns, in which Ivan
Maisel blankets the college game the same way King does the
pros. If you have a taste for prognostication, NFL guru Paul
Zimmerman's picks are SI's last word on the coming week's games.
Each week on the Web site, Dr. Z will rank NFL teams from 1 to
31, weigh in on a hot topic and respond to readers' questions.
The Web site will combine the entertaining (a weekly Flem File
from staff writer David Fleming) with the informative
(interactive depth charts, a weekly "Heisman Watch" ranking).
Still looking for more? If yours is among the 15 million
households that gets CNN/SI, our all-sports cable channel, you
can see weekly reports from Fleming and Maisel. "The Information
Age changes our jobs yearly," says King, "and this expanded
coverage allows us to keep pace."
Bill Colson, Managing Editor
does the pros.