Tag Archives: nfl

Friday musing – Super Bowl 50, Michael Clarke returns…….maybe

Chris Barwin HillsWell we have one of the biggest sporting events in the world and certainly the biggest sporting event in North America kicking off on Monday morning Australian time being the NFL Superbowl between the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos. I have never been carolinaa big fan of the sport, possibly through lack of understanding, but the fact that a defensive linesman can have a great game and not touch the ball seems to be quite strange given the AFL emphasis on possession. I also find it peculiar that the main player in American football, being the quarterback does not kick the ball. Of the football codes, the NFL has the least emphasis on kicking. Notwithstanding my indifference to the sport it’s popularity in Australia is increasing and I am sure there will be a lot of people off work on Monday just to watch the game. I am going with the favourites, the Panthers.

I was interested to hear that Michael Clarke has announced he is coming out of retirement. As I understand it, he has only flagged
clarkeplaying the Sydney equivalent of district cricket at this stage, but surely he must be gearing up to cash in on the T20 circuit. As we have seen from other recently “retired” cricketers there is good money to be made. My big question mark over Michael Clarke would be that he has never been an attacking batsman that could do any better than a run a ball at best. If I had anything to do with a T20 franchise in Australia or overseas I would be reluctant to pay too much for his services and query the Melbourne Stars signing him to a contract in the Big Bash.

Have a great weekend!

Sports Marketing seminar not to be missed

Unknown-8A great initiative from the Southern Football Netball League in presenting a seminar that will provide tips to community clubs on sports marketing in the digital age.

Featuring Senior Associate Commissioner Dan Butterly and Sports Geek Sean Callanan, the seminar will be held on Wednesday 13 May 2015 starting at 6.30pm at Clayton Football Club rooms.  Both Dan and Sean are former Sportzfan Radio contributors and have a long history in sports marketing.

Unknown-4Dan is responsible for branding and marketing the Mountain West Conference which forms part of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the USA. He is the key person involved in marketing, promotions, merchandising, licensing and advertising.  The Mountain West comprises 12 colleges in 8 states of the USA with almost 6,000 student athletes involved in 15 different sporting disciplines.

The Mountain West has been a very successful conference having, in the last 16 years, had one of their student athletes selected as the number one draft pick in the NFL, MLB and NBA drafts. That includes Australia’s own Andrew Bogut who was the first Australian drafted at number one into the NBA.

Sean Callanan or the Sports Geek, as he is better known in sports digital Unknown-5circles, is at the cutting edge in the field and his expertise has seen him develop a client base in both Australia and internationally.  He
provides advice to teams in the NBA, AFL, NRL and cricket and is also a much sought after presenter at any seminar covering his area of expertise. He is fresh from presenting at the SEAT conference held in March 2015 in London.

This is sure to be an opportunity not to be missed to hear two  leaders in their respective fields.

Check out the SFNL website for further details.

Tebow or Hayne….who’ll get closer to making an NFL list?

Feb 27 2011 016With the news that the Philadelphia Eagles have brought former quarterback, Tim Tebow in for a workout, it prompted me to ask whether Tebow or Jarryd Hayne would be more likely to still be around when NFL teams make their final cuts to lists at the end of the pre-season.

You may remember that Tebow, the 2007 Heisman trophy winner, was drafted in the first round of the 2010 NFL draft by the Denver Broncos and started 14 games. In 2011 he took over at quarterback from Kyle Orton and transformed the Broncos from a 1-4 record to Unknownfinish 8-8, a Division title and an unlikely overtime playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. However, when Peyton Manning game to town, Tebow was shipped off to the New York Jets for a fourth round draft selection. Things didn’t work out in New York and Tim soon found himself out of the game.

Eagles’ coach Chip Kelly is currently in the process of reshaping the player list so there is every possibility that Tebow could be signed for the pre-season so that he can show his wares. I doubt Kelly, a former College coach with the Oregon Ducks, is bringing Tebow in for his pocket passing skills but rather for his running and improvisational abilities. If Tebow can make it anywhere, he can make it under a Chip Kelly offence and I rate him as a real chance.

Contrast that with the position of Hayne at the San Francisco 49ers.image A person who has not played in the NFL or, for that matter,  a competitive game of ‘grid iron’ at all. Although his position on the extended list is apparently guaranteed until the last week of training camp, unlike Tebow, he has no body of work to fall back on or reference point for the 49er coaches. Clearly he will need to come up with performances that have a ‘wow’ factor in order to survive through to the season proper.

Las Vegas doesn’t offer odds on whether players will make a list on the basis that some team officials already know the answer to that question.  However, if I could bet, I’d be on Tebow.

A lot of talk but not much substance to Hayne’s move to the NFL

meI have said before that there is a lot of smoke and mirrors to Jarryd Hayne’s attempted move from the NRL to the NFL.

Over the last few days the Hayne PR machine has ramped up again this time telling us that he is soon to select a team and sign with possibly the Detroit Lions or the San Francisco 49ers. There is also news that up to eight NFL teams including the Green Bay Packers and the current Champion New England Patriots have requested a tape of his pro day work out.

One needs to understand that NFL clubs spend a great deal of time researching players and have hundreds and hundreds of tapes so the fact that a club has asked for the tape is little indication of anything except Hayne is being considered along with hundreds of other players.

Should Hayne be signed by an NFL club it is a risk free look for any club. I say that as there won’t be any guaranteed money, it will be for the minimum contract amount and, unlike in Australia, the day you get cut is the day the Club no longer pays you. That’s the end of the contract.

Following the NFL draft in April 2015, each NFL team will have over 100 players on their roster made up of players already on contract, players drafted in April, free agents made up of undrafted players and those who have been cut from club lists at the end of the 2014 season and people like Hayne who sign a ‘futures deal’.

Importantly for any contracted player, there are two roster cuts that must be made by each team. One in mid August 2015 when lists are pared down to 75 and then another a week later when the roster is further reduced to just 53 players. Meaning a team must reduce its list by just under 50%.

Some reports from NFL scouts indicate that Hayne is too slow, doesn’t know the game and at best could make a practice squad. He will need to overcome a lot to make a final list!

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to see Hayne make it in the NFL. It would be refreshing though if the rose coloured glasses were taken off for a while and the size of the task is acknowledged.

My advice to Jarryd is to select a team very, very carefully!

Friday musing – Packers, Seahawks, DeflateGate, Super Bowl XLIX….

There’s almost too much to talk about in today’s Friday musing!

First off let’s look at the recently completed Championship games from the NFL. The Green Bay Packers had the Seattle Seahawks on Carroll2toast with about five minutes left in the game. At that time the odds makers had the Seahawks less than a five percent chance of winning. A reported six things had to go wrong for the Packers for them to lose the game….and they all did.

Perhaps the worst blunder during those five minutes was Packer Brandon Bostick trying to catch an onside kick with his helmet….denying Jordy Nelson an easy catch and gifting the ‘fumble’ to the Seahawks. That play will haunt Packer fans for years to come.

Whilst on the Seahawks, I came across a 2012 article from the Bleacher Report that gave Pete Carroll and the Seahawks an ‘F’ for that year’s draft…and I quote ‘Pete Carroll is proving why he didn’t Carrollmake it in the NFL the first time….selecting Russell Wilson…was by far the worst move of the draft’. Shows the so called media experts don’t always get it right!

I never thought deflating footballs would become a pastime in New England. The NFL are investigating and have rounded up the usual suspects. The Patriots coach, Bill Belichick says he has no explanation on how the footballs became deflated. I wonder who belichicktook it on themselves then to make that decision. Surely some simple investigation will locate the culprit? Money is on the NFL not sorting this thing out anytime soon…especially with Super Bowl XLIX only a week away.

My tip for the Super Bowl – Pete Carroll and the Seahawks by 10!

If you thought deflating footballs was a stretch, consider the noble sport of golf. In the last week we have seen Robert Allenby’s dubious allenbyreporting of an incident after a night out in Waikiki that left his face re-arranged. His report has it that he was drugged, abducted, bashed and robbed. Reports are now surfacing that Allenby was drunk and passed out in the street and ‘face planted’ a rock. It was even big enough news to make ESPN’s Keith Olbermann show. Olbermann had much glee in highlighting the inconsistencies in Allenby’s story.

As if that wasn’t enough for golf, we then have Tiger Woods’ missing tooth to contend with. Story is he was hit in the mouth by an errant mounted video camera. Whether it did or it didn’t, you would pay money to be in a three on the golf course with Woods and Allenby just for the inside information on those stories.

Have a great weekend!

Jarryd Hayne and the NFL – a story

As an avid fan of the NFL, I am having difficulty following the Jarryd Hayne efforts to sign with an NFL club. Reports today have the former Eels NRL star returning to Australia due to visa problems. Those ‘problems’ meant he could not sign a contract with an undisclosed NFL team.

First thing I would say to that is ‘what a mistake to make’! Next thing I would say is just how would the NFL team sign Hayne? The NFL has eligibility rules and I can’t find any one that would have allowed him to sign now.image

I read with interest on the Sportsbet site that the ‘rumour’ is that he has signed a ‘futures contract’ with Detroit Lions. On the basis of that, Sportsbet has wound in the odds on Hayne participating in the NFL. However, signing that contract wouldn’t let Hayne play this season as such a contract doesn’t take effect until March 2015 and, by the way, that type of contract cannot be signed until AFTER the end of the NFL season. So then what has Hayne signed, if anything?

I discussed the subject of Hayne playing in the NFL with a senior Seattle Seahawks official in November this year and his response was decidedly underwhelming. Almost a Jarryd who?

I wish Hayne all the best in his endeavours to crack the NFL, but, there appears to be a lot of spin and not much substance to this story at the moment.

I figure he is closer to playing in the NRL in 2015 than the NFL!

Should Adrian Peterson be re-instated by NFL?

imageAdrian Peterson pleaded ‘no contest’ yesterday to a misdemeanour charge of reckless assault which arose out of him ‘punishing’ his child. He was fined $4,000.00 and ordered to perform 80 hours of community service.

With the legal proceedings out of the way, the question now is whether or not the NFL, through Commissioner Goodell, will re-instate Peterson and allow him to play the balance of the NFL season.  Since playing the first game, Peterson has missed seven games.

The NFL has said it will review the Court documents and other material prior to making a decision. Given the recent backlash over the handling of the Ray Rice affair, you can bet that the NFL will proceed with extreme caution in an effort to avoid a similar public outcry over lenient penalties.

Peterson must at least serve the minimum six match suspension for being involved in a ‘domestic violence’ situation. Given that he has been on full pay whilst on the Commissioner’s Permission List (by the way, the only player that is on that list), the suspension would see him penalised around $5.4 million of salary.

A decision by the NFL could still be some weeks away, so I would think that the six games plus games missed while a decision is being made, is sufficient penalty, bearing in mind that any second offence brings a lifetime ban.

The NFL is only the first hurdle for Peterson to get over though as the Minnesota Vikings have yet to indicate whether they will play him even if he becomes eligible. That may be a tougher sell for Peterson than the NFL.

AFL, broadcast rights, innovation!

mcgEven though the current AFL $1.25 billion broadcast rights deal does not expire until 2016, what better time to pump up the rights discussion than after an AFL Grand Final? With two years left on the deal, the subject appears in the media today with ‘talks on a new deal to open within weeks’.

That may be the case, but with the hammering the AFL got from diminishing crowds this season, I for one would be wary of how much money I’d invest in a product that is on the nose with a lot of fans. Add to that a schedule that throws up less than interesting contests ie. GWS v Gold Coast, GWS v Melbourne, Melbourne v anyone, 7.00pm matches on a Sunday, 7.00pm matches on Monday and I’d suggest that the dollars may not be there for a deal as big as the AFL expects (at least $3 billion over 10 years).

The AFL says that they have listened to the fans complaints about scheduling and the cost to families of attending games. I’ll am keen to see just what changes are actually made.

If the AFL want an increase then they should consider ‘innovation’ to help things along. As a suggestion, why not introduce conference style play similar to the NFL. Not only would this spice things up but would also solve some of the inequities of the current fixture. This could be accomplished by placing one team from each of SA, WA, NSW and Qld in separate conferences and then splitting the ten from Victoria between the two so that each conference has nine teams. A team would play each team in its own conference twice (16 matches) and each team in the other conference once making a season total of 25 matches.

The top four teams in each conference would progress to the final series with 1 v 4 and 2 v 3 playing in each conference, the winners of those games each playing in a preliminary final and then the winning team from each conference plays in the grand final.

The extra ‘productivity’ by the players (3 extra matches in a season) would justify the ever increasing salaries the players are receiving.

Friday musing – NFL, Super Bowl, NBA, Essendon FC, cricket……

Chris Barwin HillsNot being a big American sports fan I have not seen a lot of sport in my two and a half weeks in Hawaii, but I was there for the Super Bowl. My daughter and I went to a bar on Maui and watched the game from just before half time. While being seated by the manager I enquired as to whom I should be supporting and I was assured I should be on the Seahawks. The bar seemed to be evenly divided between the Denver fans, who were very quiet and the Seattle fans who were a little more excited with plenty of Sea-Hawk chants. I enjoyed the game, however, the advertisements and the entertainment seemed to go for a lot longer than the actual playing time. My daughter also enjoyed the game and the advertisements! I think the game was an endorsement for the maxim that a good defence will usually defeat a good offence.

My other sporting observation from my time in Hawaii was the saturation coverage of basketball. It did not seem to matter what time of the day it was, if you went into a bar or restaurant and they had sport on the television, it was usually the NBA or college basketball and that included the time leading up to the Super Bowl.

Since being back in Australia I have been disappointed to see the Essendon supplements saga rear its head again. I guess it is not going to go away until such time as ASADA have closed their file. This could go on for years!

A good start to the Test series in South Africa, but I am starting to get a little concerned about Michael Clarke’s ongoing form lapse. Having scored 100’s in the first two Ashes tests he has not passed fifty since. I have been happy with the continued good form of Steve Smith, who in the same period has made three centuries. With Shane Watson missing from the line-up I hope we won’t be found to be a bowler short.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Sportzfan Radio show #261.1

@SportzfanRadio now available on iTunes!26 August 2012 261.1 – The Professor and Paul Gamble kick off the program with Sportzfan Stan still out of the side injured. They start the program looking at the parlous state of rugby union with the Wallabies failing to trouble the scorer for the first time in fifty years against the All Blacks. They consider that Robbie Deans tenure must be on shaky ground. Dan Butterly comes on to talk US sport and looks at the Lance Armstrong decision not to contest the USADA charges, the start of the college football season and also the start of the NFL season. The Gelding talks racing and reviews the results from yesterday’s Moonee Valley and Warwick Farm meetings.