Black Quarterback: The Bigger than Football Episode
By Brandon Simmons
Is Jerry Jones bigger than the NFL?
This is not a question that should even be asked because we all know there is a “yes” that comes along with it, but apparently Roger Goodell and the NFL owners don’t see it that way. Currently, Jones is threatening to sue the league and six owners so he can vote against Roger Goodell’s contract extension. It’s crazy to believe that a NFL owner would pull such a stunt, but Jones is not just regular NFL owner.
Jerry Jones is Kris Jenner and the Cowboys are the Kardashians. Everybody knows that the Dallas Cowboys are one of the more notable franchises as well as the most attention-sought in the league, even though they have been quite average in the 20+ years since their last Super Bowl. That’s largely thanks to the marketing genius of Jones within that time frame. During this same time period, you don’t remember conference championships or epic playoff battles. However, you can recall the time quarterback Tony Romo fumbled the snap in his first playoff game, both times the Cowboys blew their number one 1 playoff seeding and lost their divisional matchups at home, every storyline that starred wide receiver Terell Owens when he didn’t get the ball or a whole bunch of regular season moments that were pure comedy.
Jones’ penchant for entertainment is why the Cowboys are one of the most valuable teams to this league. Last month, it was reported the franchise to be valued at $6 billion dollars. That’s not because Jones has put in great football minds to elevate this team; he has put in big names that are decent enough to get some wins to stay in business but also able to draw some attention. This year, the Cowboys drafted a rookie defensive end from Michigan named Taco Charlton. When Charlton got his first sack last week, there was a promotion ran with the local taco restaurant, Taco Bueno, serving 97 cent tacos, which is also his jersey number.
There is no other owner that can go up against the league, threatening to sue other than Jones. He’s the most visible out of all the figureheads in every team’s executive brass. People look at his success as more than just football; they see an empire which is equated into power that can transcend sports leagues.
Watson Watching Bridgewater
Sunday, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater suited up for a game for the first time since suffering a non-contact knee injury a year and a half ago; and it definitely has to have caught the attention of Houston Texans rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson. Watson suffered a similar non-contact injury in the week leading up to Week 9, which some believed was injured Week 8 against the Seahawks but was initially ruled a non-contact ailment during practice. For a player as young as Watson, who has never faced a real injury, Bridgewater has to be the unlikely role model for this obstacle.
This is an injury that is quite rare and could determine the future of both of these quarterbacks. Right now, Bridgewater has returned to a 7-2 Vikings team that appears to be bowling over teams with defense and just making it with their offense, which is helmed by quarterback Case Keenum. Keenum is probably playing his best season ever throwing for 1900 yards and 11 touchdowns with only 5 picks. Before this, he was just some backup but now he has the potential to become a full time starter, which could mean trouble for Bridgewater, who was drafted in 2014 as the apparent franchise quarterback. However, he was still sort of developing when he got injured, and if he’s unable to get back to form by next season, it could really put a dent in his career. This is similar to what happened with Watson, a young quarterback who was doing well, but still learning the pro game before getting hurt. The main thing that works in his favor is that it does not appear the Texans will have another quarterback capable of playing at a high level anytime soon. The one thing working against him is that he has never faced an injury, with it being so early in his career and not know how his body will respond to treatments and healing. Could this also affect the way he plays the game? Former Washington Redskin Robert Griffin III was never the same after he injured his knee in the Redskins’ Wild Card game of his rookie year. Former Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan was on Fox Sports 1’s Undisputed, to explain that a myriad of factors happened to Griffin while he in was Washington but mostly brought on by that injury:
Knee injuries in sports are one of those things that you never really wish on any athlete, particularly in football and basketball. There have been plenty of promising superstars whose careers have taken downward turns after they get hurt in that area. Watson has a long career ahead of him, and there’s no doubt it’s all depending on how many times Bridgewater hits that field.
The Case Keenum Conundrum
So now that Bridgewater is back, what are the Vikings going to do with Case Keenum, who has given their offense some competitive life? Keenum took over for the regular starter, Sam Bradford, when he was hurt in Week 2 of the season. Since then, he has led a struggling offense to a top 10 unit and having his best season as a pro, as mentioned earlier. However, Bridgewater was drafted in hopes of becoming the franchise QB while Keenum has never really found his footing.
The Vikings are leading the NFC North behind Case Keenum right now and it could go a couple of ways. They could keep him to compete for the starting job next season with Bridgewater or as a backup, in the event he injures his knee again. The team could trade Keenum for some picks, to beef up their offensive line in hopes of protecting Bridgewater even more. Right now, they should focus on riding out with him into the postseason where they have a chance to do some real damage. This is only the beginning but we could expect to see much more out of this situation.
Colin Kaepernick on the cover of GQ – Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is on the cover of GQ Magazine’s Citizens of the Year issue. Kaep will be joning other stars such as Wonder Woman’s Gal Gadot, talk show host Stephen Colbert and NBA star Kevin Durant, who will appear on alternate covers.
Marquis Goodwin touchdown – This is more of prayers than a shout out to 49ers wide receiver Marquis Goodwin and his family. Goodwin scored a touchdown Sunday hours after learning him and his wife lost their baby due to pregnancy complications. Prayers sent out to them during this troubling time
Broncos’ fall – the Denver Broncos suffered the their 5th straight loss after getting beat by the New England Patriots 41-16. After starting the year 3-1, they now sit last place at 3-6.
Still Winless – The Cleveland Browns failed to get a win against the Detroit Lions, despite jumping to a 10-0 lead in the 1st quarter. Probably couldn’t find a way to stop those 3 touchdowns Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford threw with his 249 yards.
Hopefully, this weekend will wash away all out the blowouts from this past weekend. And for that to happen, look no further than the Los Angeles Rams and Minnesota Vikings. The high powered Rams offense will be facing the Vikings and their powerful defense. It’s a great matchup but just might be the undercard of the weekend before the Atlanta Falcons go at the Seattle Seahawks on Monday Night Football. These teams are both in the playoff hunt, in a competitive Wild Card race. Don’t be surprised to see these two teams leave it all out there on the field. But until then…I’ll holla.
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