Straining at the leash

Is it obsession to read everything there is on BTB, and then sit there hitting the refresh button, desperately hoping a new comment will show up somewhere?

Oh.  I was afraid of that.  They do have meds that will help, right?

Anyway, after this downer (read my comment carefully to see how I really feel), I was wondering if something might come along that would inspire another of my seemingly out of control series of posts.  And, bless OCC's mathematically gifted heart, he puts up a quick article on Keith Brooking that just sets me off.

Besides, people keep saying nice things about my posts, and as you know, no good deed will go unpunished.

This post is about what Keith said.  Now, with any player remarks, you do tend to judge them a bit by the source.

Brooking himself is becoming something of a lightening rod.  There is a feeling expressed in some of the comments that he is a liability for the team because his presence inhibits the development of younger, more athletic linebackers.  Also, that walker he uses does present a tripping hazard.  It seems obvious from his remarks that he fully plans to be back on the team this fall, possibly to maintain his AARP endorsement deal.  In a real sense, he may be helped by the time off, getting healed up and all.  And I would bet that the Big Robowski is only going to keep Keith around if he thinks he can contribute more than one of the young'uns. 

For this discussion, however, it's not the condition of his body that matters, but his football smarts.  And, despite those freaky pep talks he did, I have a good deal of respect for him.  Face it, anyone who can get out on the field in the NFL at his age and perform well enough to keep his roster spot has to have some brains, because it ain't the raw physicality anymore.  Especially playing inside linebacker.  So I give more weight to his comments than I would to most.

His opinion that the Cowboys have gained an advantage with the player led workouts is a very, very good thing, IMHO.  On several levels.

The first is the obvious, that the team has in essence gotten some "bonus" practices that the other teams have not.  I realize that these do not have the value of a real OTA or practice, but they have some value.  Even if you take a very cynical position and say that they only accomplish 25% as much, that's still more preparation and work than the other teams have.  I was particularly encouraged that Keith has been comparing notes with his friends on other teams, and gets a totally different evaluation of those workouts.  Any advantage for the Star is good.

The second, I'm sure most saw.  Brooking clearly put an endorsement of Tony Romo, Team Leader, in his comments.  It is possible that this is just a bit of a reaction to some of the questions that have been raised about this subject, but I am taking it mostly at face value.  Tony showed one veteran something, and that means he probably showed it to many others.  Compare his actions to the comments from Aaron Rodgers (who is after all the greatest quarterback since Peyton Manning) and Eli Manning (who is after all the brother of Peyton Manning).  Now, which one of those three seems the most inspirational for the moment?

I think the leadership crisis on the Cowboys has been a tad exaggerated.

In addition to those takeaways from the article, I got one more.  One I think is the most important, and that you only got if you clicked on the link and read the source articles.

Over 50 players turned out.  50.  Now, I don't think they came to these workouts because they were lonely and missed their locker buddies.  No, this says one thing to me.


These guys want redemption.  They are pissed off about what happened last year.  They have a chip on their shoulder.  And I think they got a little inspired by the last eight games of the season.  They have faith in what is happening with the coaching staff.  And they are ready to go.  If you think this work stoppage is frustrating to you, imagine what they feel.

And don't forget.  These guys are not getting paid.  What would motivate them to go out and practice for free?

Belief.  Desire.  Anger.  All things that make for great play.

Damn, I am ready for some FOOTBALL!.

Stupid, idiotic, lockout.


The following is not factual, has no relation to the content above, and has no basis in anything other than that you know it could happen.


Today, Brett Favre, the greatest quarterback ever until the advent of Peyton Manning, announced that he was coming out of retirement.

"it just occurred to me that this was what I had wanted all along, no OTAs, no training camp, just show up, run through a couple of plays, and go out there and collect a huge paych . . . uh, win some games.  I am energized, excited, motivated, and I feel like I am thirty-nine again.  Besides, I googled my name the other day, and hardly anything came up.  I figure with the economy being so bad, I can at least get a couple of sports reporters hired to cover me.

"Now, I could never have made this decision without the right encouragement and support.  In particular, I would never have done this if not for a wonderful human being I met through Twitter, who convinced me that this was the right thing to do.  He has not only encouraged me, but he has agreed to become my new agent.  Heck, this man is a true brother to me.  He and I have so much in common, and he understands things about me no one else does.

"Let me introduce him:  Former Representative Anthony Weiner."

Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.

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