The Jason Peters Trade and the 2009 NFL Draft - My Thoughts
I don't think I've missed an NFL preseason game in years. When I tell people this, they usually give me a dirty look or ask me if I've recently escaped from the local mental institution. I then have to explain that I watch the first three weeks of the preseason (the final week doesn't count because no one plays except for practice squad guys) for fantasy purposes.
For instance, in 2007, I noted on this Web site that Tom Brady's first read on almost every play was Wes Welker. I named Welker one of my fantasy sleepers and told my readers to take him in the middle rounds. A few months later, Welker finished the year tied for the league lead in receptions with T.J. Houshmandzadeh. That's why I'm more than happy to tune into a Browns-Lions preseason contest.
When these people hear my explanation and decide not to have me committed, they usually ask if I watch the Pro Bowl as well. To that, I smile and proudly boast, "I've been a football fan since I was about 10 years old, and I've never watched the Pro Bowl."
The Pro Bowl is a joke. Some of the top players opt out. Those who go don't really try. It's not even a real football game. And it's impossible to bet on because no one puts forth any effort. As a degenerate gambler, I do not find this appealing.
However, the reason I hate the Pro Bowl more than anything is that there are far too many crappy players named to the two squads. I don't think the NFL should strip the fans of all of the decision-making, but it's a joke because there too many clueless voters out there.
Jason Peters is the perfect example. Peters, a 6-4, 340-pound mauling left tackle, is entering his sixth year. In 2006, he started all 16 games and surrendered just two sacks.
I later wrote of Peters, "[He] has emerged as one of the top left tackles in the NFL. Unfortunately, Peters is holding out because he wants to renegotiate his contract. I say pay the man. Peters is in the middle of a 5-year deal worth $15 million. He's one of the best players at his position, and he certainly deserves a lot more than he's currently making."
So, should my Pro Bowl voting rights be revoked as well because I considered Peters a top talent? No; not for this reason anyway. Since the 2006 campaign, Peters' play has regressed exponentially. In 2007, Peters gave up six sacks in 15 contests. And last year, things got downright ugly, as Peters surrendered a whopping 11.5 sacks in just 13 games, good for tops in the NFL. Peters was also whistled for eight penalties, a career high for him.
Now you see why I hate the Pro Bowl so much. How could the league's worst left tackle, statistically speaking, be voted in as one of the premier players at his position?
Moreover, how could Andy Reid give up the No. 28 overall selection in the 2009 NFL Draft for him? You can suggest that Reid was too busy waiting in line all year at Geno's Steaks to watch film on Peters or even check his stats, but doing so wouldn't be too classy. I mean, what kind of Web site makes fun of fat coaches and NFL analysts who can't even come close to speaking proper English?
I don't like this trade at all for Philadelphia; the team would have been better served trading up for Michael Oher or William Beatty, or simply sliding Todd Herremans over to left tackle. As mentioned, Peters gave up 11.5 sacks in 2008. Newly acquired right tackle Stacy Andrews, coming off knee surgery, allowed 9.5 sacks last season.
Either the Eagles missed the 2008 season entirely, or are trying their hardest to get Donovan McNabb injured so the highly anticipated Kevin Kolb era can commence as quickly as possible. On the bright side, they'll probably serve McNabb some Chunky Soup while he's lying in bed at the hospital.
From Buffalo's perspective, the deal was a lucrative one. The organization avoided overpaying for one of the NFL's most overrated players. The Bills can take Oher or Andre Smith at No. 11 overall (trading up to No. 9 for one of them is also an option). They'll be able to spend the No. 28 selection on a much-needed pass-rusher, such as Larry English or Michael Johnson. And now, they'll be free to spend their second-round choice on the best tight end or linebacker available. They also get a fourth-rounder and a conditional 2010 pick.
Seems like a fair trade for the Bills. The only downside to the deal is that their fans will have one less Pro Bowler to root for. Not that anyone watches that stupid game anyway.