Tag:Michael Vick
Posted on: May 25, 2011 8:53 pm
Edited on: May 25, 2011 9:07 pm

Hot Routes 5.25.11: Mike Kafka's 'next step'

Posted by Will Brinson

Got a link for the Hot Routes? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL).
  • Mike Kafka told the Philadelphia Inquirer that he's ready to "take that next step" and become the Eagles' official backup. Of course, that presumes that Kevin Kolb is traded. Fortunately, Andy Reid's got his back too. I know that Reid's really good at developing quarterbacks and all, but going from Kolb backing up Vick to Kafka backing up Vick is a significantly different proposition.
  • Is it legal for the younger brother of an NFL offensive coordinator to teach that OC's new quarterback the offense? I mean, it's not, right?

Posted on: May 19, 2011 11:12 am
Edited on: May 19, 2011 4:08 pm

Kolb to Arizona a 'slam dunk' after lockout?

Posted by Will Brinson

The lockout is probably the greatest thing ever to happen to Kevin Kolb. With each passing day, his value seems to grow more and more.

But, he's been specifically attached to one team in recent days: the Arizona Cardinals. In fact, some are calling Kolb to the Cards a "slam dunk."

"Arizona ... a slam dunk as much as you can have a slam dunk," ESPN's Sal Paolantonio told Peter King (on Sirius Radio, I believe, though I cannot confirm).

There was actually some chatter that a Kolb-Cards deal was already done, with the principle parts being Kolb for Patrick Peterson (aka "2011 first-rounder") and a 2012 second-rounder.

Kevin Kolb: So Hot Right Now
That rumor was probably based on Roger Goodell's recent statements that teams could trade during the brief period in between lockouts. However, Andy Reid shot the rumor out of the sky before it really every took its metaphorical wings and started flapping too high.

Still, even if there isn't a deal now, there's almost certainly going to be one before 2011 starts. There are too many teams that have a need at quarterback -- yes, still! -- and too many good fits for Kolb for the Eagles to wait and try to utilize him as a backup.

And yes, for those wondering, yes, every story about the NFL eventually ends up in some sort of discussion about Kolb's value to other teams.

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Posted on: May 14, 2011 2:44 pm

Vick speaking at Camelot Schools commencement

Posted by Will Brinson

The trials and tribulations of Michael Vick are an inspiring story for many people, particularly those that appreciate second chances. Which makes it quite appropriate that Vick will be the commencement speaker for Camelot Schools in Philadelphia next month.

Camelot is a group of five schools in the Philadelphia area that, per Tim McManus of Philadelphia Sports Daily, "works in partnership with the Philadelphia school district, offering transition services for kids dealing with behavioral and emotional issues." That group of five schools chose Vick as their commencement speaker of choice, and the Eagles' quarterback graciously accepted the offer.

"These students may have made a mistake along the way, but they turned it around," said Vick in a statement. "They did the right thing and finished school. I am honored to be speaking at their commencement."

It seems like a no-brainer for Vick to accept the offer (just need him to make sure and show up, not that it's been a problem or anything ...), but what about on Camelot's end? Were they worried and/or concerned about bringing in a former convict? Um, no.

“There was not a whole lot of debate on our end,” said Alexander. “One thing that we are constantly addressing with our students is if you make a mistake, if you make a bad decision, there is accountability involved, and just because this is your reality now it doesn’t have to be your reality forever.
Vick's Offseason

“Vick’s story is very relevant to their situation.”

It absolutely is, and that's pretty important when it comes to choosing a commencement speaker. While having a successful, respected member of the community is important, it's not as important as having a speaker that the kids at Camelot look up to and -- most importantly -- can relate to.

Vick is a perfect example of that.

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Posted on: May 11, 2011 2:46 pm
Edited on: May 11, 2011 3:06 pm

Boxer Hopkins implies McNabb isn't 'black' enough

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Bernard Hopkins is one of boxing’s all-time greatest fighters (and perhaps the best middleweight in history). But he’s certainly not an effective ambassador for the sport.

Which he proved yet again Tuesday when promoting his May 21 fight against Jean Pascal in which Hopkins will try to become the oldest-ever world champion in any weight class.

For some reason, Hopkins had a hankering to talk about Redskins QB Donovan McNabb, and it wasn’t in very complimentary terms. In fact, this was more of a Rush Limbaugh-style rant.

Hopkins basically said McNabb isn’t a black man in the same way Hopkins is a black man. Or Terrell Owens and Michael Vick are black men, for that matter.

Said Hopkins, via the Phillynews.com: “He’s got a suntan. That’s all.”

As an example, he brought up the Eagles trade of McNabb to Washington.

"Why do you think McNabb felt he was betrayed?” Because McNabb is the guy in the house, while everybody else is on the field,” Hopkins said. “He's the one who got the extra coat. The extra servings. 'You're our boy.’ He thought he was one of them."

Clearly, Hopkins is referring to slavery and plantations and Uncle Tom’s. And it’s not the first time Hopkins has gone off on a racial rant – he also said Joe Calzaghe couldn’t beat him because Calzaghe is a white guy (for the record, Calzaghe won a split decision against Hopkins in 2008).

"McNabb? Great. Skills? Throw the ball? Great,” Hopkins said. “But there was something missing. Vick? He understands. And T.O. - same cloth."

That said, Hopkins said that he WOULD allow McNabb to watch his kids. So, McNabb has that going for him.

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Posted on: May 7, 2011 10:31 pm

Madden 12 getting serious graphical upgrades

Posted by Will Brinson

As some of you may know, I'm a bit of a Madden junkie. I reviewed Madden 11 before it dropped last year, and look forward to doing so with Madden 12 this year again, especially after reading this post from Mike Young, Art Director of Madden 12 over at EA Sports' website about the "major graphical upgrades" they're putting in place for the newest rendition. 

For starters, pregame introductions are getting what appears to be a serious overhaul -- pregame is a facet that's been improved in recent years (Can you even remember what the "pregame" looked like five or six years ago? Guh.), it's still an area where the team at EA can find some improvement. They look to have done that this year, not only with the giant flags in the middle of the field (great graphical detail, woo America!, etc.) but with the team introductions as well.

As you can see below, the Bears look pretty sweet coming out of the tunnel.

Now, we just need them to figure out a way to have Ray Lewis do his dance in 3-D so we can get people really pumped up and scare the crap out of kids.

Speaking of scaring kids, the images of Michael Vick below (I kid, I kid) are pretty indicative of how EA's providing an upgrade for player detail and lighting within the game. They've moved to what's called "Linear Lighting," something that was used in NCAA 11 in order to achieve more realistic colors. In Madden 11, you're pretty clearly playing on a virtual world, even as real as the stadium, field, etc., look.

The improvement in player detail should be obvious, albeit subtle -- check the shadows, padding and creases on Vick's jersey, as well as the flak jacket that he's rocking in the right photos. In addition, Young points out that they've got a brand new "head and neck scaling system" in place that will make dudes like Brandon Jacobs and Darren Sproles -- people with weird body types -- not look as cartoonish as they might have in 11. 

One of the most dope things I've seen from this set of upgrades, though, is the 3-D grass that Madden 12 will have, in addition to the "flying turf" you'll see below.

Unlike previous years, you can actually, you know, see the grass a) standing up on the field when it the camera gets close and b) see turf flying. The latter is particularly sensical, because as we've seen from the aforementioned Soldier Field (except in real life), conditions aren't always perfect for football. 

So, yeah, very cool stuff all around. And, sure it may seem uber-nerdy -- and it is! -- but for those of us that play the game, it's a welcome bonus. Besides, it might be the only football we get in 2011!

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Posted on: April 27, 2011 5:05 pm
Edited on: April 28, 2011 11:51 am

Peyton Hillis shocks world for Madden 12 cover

P. Hillis suprisingly has won the Madden 12 cover (Getty). Posted by Will Brinson

Peyton Hillis overcame lots of odds to become a star running back in the NFL. He might have overcome MORE odds to become the cover athlete of Madden 12, in a shocking result that was revealed on live television.

Michael Vick stormed his way to the finals, while Hillis and the fans of Cleveland Browns grass-rooted their way to the finals of the first-ever competition that featured fan voting.

Hillis took the league by storm in 2010, rushing for 1,177 yards and getting in the end zone a total of 13 times.

• Thurs. 7 p.m. ET: NFL DRAFT Live coverage

Of course, this may not do wonders for Hillis' value in fantasy football -- or for the Browns! -- if you believe in the Madden curse. Regardless, though, it's a fantastic story for a guy who flew under the radar out of Arkansas (behind Felix Jones and Darren McFadden) and was traded out of Denver for Brady Quinn.

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Posted on: April 20, 2011 3:05 pm

Hot Routes 4.20.11 a time for hypotheticals

Hot Routes

Posted by Andy Benoit

Brandon Marshall thinks Ryan Mallett will be an All-Pro.

Norv Turner believes that being at home in three of the first four games will give the Chargers an opportunity to get off to a fast start (for a change).

Click here to see some sloppy touch screen analysis from Michael Irvin.

Ozzie Newsome says the Sergio Kindle story “is not written yet”. (True, but the first few chapters were sure bad.)

Based on 2010 records, the Carolina Panthers have the toughest 2011 schedule in the NFL. (Reason why: they don’t get to play the Carolina Panthers.)

Bengals season ticket holder Dr. Kim Brady will have the honor of announcing the team’s fourth round draft pick this year. (Expect it to be a player with some sort of criminal record.)

Film studying savant Greg Cosell says Jimmy Smith, not Patrick Peterson, is the best cornerback in this year’s draft.

Bob Raissman of the New York Daily News is incensed that NFL Films had Thursday Night Football’s Bob Papa audition for the play-by-play job he already has.

Cheerleaders aren’t locked out right now, which is why the Titans are holding a tryout next month.

Matt Hasselbeck talks about his status with the Seahawks (predictably, it hasn’t changed since before the lockout).

Michael Vick is visiting the Virginia Tech campus for the first time since his incarceration. (We’re gradually running out of “first time since prison” stories with this guy.)

Da’Quan Bowers says speculation about his knee is wrong.

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Posted on: April 18, 2011 9:52 pm

Kolb willing to play backup role if necessary

Posted by Will Brinson

It's presumed that Kevin Kolb will get traded at some point before 2011. After all, the Eagles seem okay with moving him and teams are desperate for quarterback talent.

But it's certainly not guaranteed -- the labor situation makes things a bit difficult when it comes to moving Kolb to another team. As such the Eagles backup is ready to be, well, just that.

"I'll go to work as a backup if that happens," Kolb said to the Dallas Star Telegram's Charean Williams. "That'll be my job. That's a possibility. I hope it doesn't happen."

That doesn't mean he'll be particularly thrilled about it though -- as Kolb as made known plenty of times over the past few months, he wants to start.

Kevin Kolb: So Hot Right Now
"I want to be starting somewhere next year. I really want to be," Kolb says. "I'm in my fifth year now, so it's time to prove myself as a starter. Andy and I have a great relationship. It's always, 'You tell your side, and I'll tell mine, and hopefully we can make this thing work.' That's usually what happens. I know he'll do the right thing here."

Well, Reid will actually do the "right thing" for the Eagles. And clearly, that means starting Michael Vick under center and letting him do the voodoo that he do.

That particular voodoo can lend itself to injuries, though, which means that Kolb, even if he ends up staying with the Eagles, he's not that far from getting his wish in the first place.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com