More Crying by Crybaby Bill (Aug. 25th)
I�ve come up with a new nickname for the FieldGoal Meister, Field Goal Bill. It�s Crybaby Bill.
We�ve not even finished the preseason yet, and already I�m sick of hearing Cowher moan, sob, cry, and weep about the "youth" and "lack of experience" of this team.
What�s even sicker, is that the Pittsburgh media, like Jerry DiPaola in today�s TR, is gullibly gobbling this poppycock up like a kid in a candy store.
Says DiPaola, "It might sound like an excuse, but what Cowher has been talking about this summer is closer to reality." DiPaola then blathers on and on about players who are in their 2nd and third seasons in the NFL.
Hey Jerry --- wake up and smell reality. Players nowadays do NOT need 6 years of NFL time for grooming and seasoning, before they can add value and contribute to their club. If the �99 season showed us anything, it was that players with ZERO NFL experience --- Kearse, Warner, James --- are capable of stepping in and getting the job done. And Jerry�s citing EXPERIENCED players like Chad Scott as being "inexperienced", despite having played 2 prior FULL NFL seasons, as well as playing superbly in the �97 playoffs, is beyond belief. How many more years should Chad Scott toil in the NFL, before he is deemed "fully experienced"..? 4 more ? 6 ?
Let�s look at this club, on both sides of the ball.
On offense, the LT has 6 prior NFL season, the RG 2. The center, regardless of if its Dawson or Duffy, has over 10. The RG, Tylski, has 4 seasons under his belt. Reserves like Myslinski, Shar, and Tharpe have numerous years of experience. The only rookie on the line is RT Smith, who will have the luxury of lining up most often alongside the TE (Breuner), who happens to have 5 years of experience.
At WR, Plex is a rookie, but he was talented enough to be the 7th overall pick. Troy has a year under his belt. Shaw has 2 years, as does Ward. MJ has a year. Sure, MJ doesn�t have a lot of PT experience, and neither did Ward as a rookie, but there�s only ONE man who is to blame for that, and his name is Crybaby Bill.
The backfield has GOBS of experience. Stewart has 5 years, Bus 7, Wittman 5, and Fu & Hunt 3. Amoz has a year. The backup QB, Graham, has 8 years.
So, looking at the offense, we have 1 rookie starter at WR, who was the 7th player taken in the draft. The other rookie starter was a 2nd round pick from a big-time Pac-10 school. Other than that, EVERY position is manned by a player who has at least 1 full season as an NFL starter (1 minor point -- Troy did not start the whole year at WR last year, but did, in fact, tie for the team lead in receptions).
The defense is even MORE experienced. On the DL, you have Henry, who has 7 years under his belt. Kimo is new to the team, but has 6 years of NFL time, most of that in a similar 3-4 defense. Prior to his back problems, Sullie was the other starter at DE, and he has 4 years of tenure in the NFL. Staat has 2 years of tenure. Smith has only 1 year of tenure, and that was spent waxing his bean on the sidleines�but again that�s the fault of Crybaby Bill, who could have EASILY gotten this man some PT last year. Clancy and Lucas are rookies, but neither man is being asked to play 60 snaps per game.
At LB, Kirk, Holmes, and Gildon have loads of NFL experience. There isn�t anything that these 3 men have not seen at the NFL level. Porter is in his 2nd season, so it�s not as though he�ll show up for a game and not know what side of the ball to line up on. Porter, of course, could have had far more PT last season, but again it was Crybaby Bill who INSISTED on keeping the sub-par, soon-to-be-free-agent Carla Emmons in the starting lineup.
The secondary is also loaded with NFL experience. DeWayne has 6 years of tenure, while Lee has 5. Alexander brings 6 prior NFL years. Chad Scott, as has already been mentioned, has 2 full NFL seasons, plus a 3rd from re-hab. 2nd year man Scott Shields is the youngster of the crew, although he got some decent PT last season. He could have had more, in lieu of the pitiful Travis Davis, but -- once again � Crybaby Bill insisted on giving gobs of PT to a lousy veteran.
To sum up, the defense will start ZERO rookies, and three 2nd-year men. That�s hardly worth the sobbing and whining that Crybaby Bill has laid on the media.
Even Bill�s favorite position -- the FG Kicker � has a full year of experience.
Last season, Indy would have had a legitimate gripe about "youth", starting a 2nd year QB and a rookie RB. But Indy didn�t do that. They laid high standards on these men, and they put these men in positions where they could excel and succeed.
It�s obvious that Cowher -- who is beginning to show the savvy and manipulative ability of "Survivor" winner Dick Hatch -- is setting himself up with a litany of excuses, all centered around this bushwah of "youth and inexperience", so that when his team stumbles to a pitiful 6 or 7-win season, he�ll already have snowed everyone and absolve himself from all blame.
But I�m not buying Crybaby Bill�s continual crying. Nor should you.
The Still Mill