Are You Ready For Some Football?

August 13, 2007 |

Thankfully, it’s officially football season beginning at 7 p.m. tonight at The Purple Palace!

Things to look for tonight while the starters watch just like us:

Marshall Yanda’s debut.  Ben Grubbs and Jared Gaither also.  These three youngsters are hopefully the foundation of the Ravens’ O-line for the next decade or so.  Try to focus on the line play tonight as much as possible. 

Yamon Figurs in the return game.  Will he be sure-handed fielding punts and kickoffs?  I believe if Figurs shows enough confidence early on, he will seriously press B.J. Sams for the return job.

Musa Smith and P.J. Daniels.  Could either one ultimately be the second stringer behind Willis?  We all know Smith’s unfortunate injury history, but it’s a testament to his passion and professionalism that he’s still in the NFL battling for work.  Daniels showed rookie jitters at times in the preseason last year, along with a penchant for slippery fingers while toting the rock.  But my recollections of Daniels are from his college years at Georgia Tech, where he annihilated the Terps and ran with purpose and power.  Any positive signs of maturing into a dependable NFL back will be welcome; you cannot have enough young legs in this league.

Troy Smith and Drew Olson.  The ONLY reason to stick around for the second half tonight is to get an idea of which of them will grab the third QB spot.  Smith’s credentials are certainly greater than Olson’s, but the competition is there.  I wouldn’t read too much into who gets more reps tonight.  Ultimately, because he’s the Heisman winner and a draft pick, the inside track has to be Smith’s.

Kevin Kolb.  The Eagles’ first choice in this year’s draft (2nd Rounder) will have an opportunity to make headway on their roster due to McNabb sitting out.  I know, I know, it’s not the Ravens, but it’s always interesting to watch other teams develop players too.  Andy Reid, who’s never met a pass play he disliked, will want to see how Kolb fares in his first NFL action.

It’s great to finally be able to see a little game action!  Enjoy!  September 10th gets closer every day!

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While I’m on the subject of football, can someone please do something at league headquarters about these full price tickets for exhibition games?  It’s borderline criminal to charge full price to loyal fans for these "games".  The only purpose is to let your guys hit someone else’s guys to break up the tedium of training camps.  Silly money for a silly product.  Did you notice how LaDainian Tomlinson was in street clothes last night during NBC’s telecast of Chargers-Seahawks?  Al Michaels announced to the world that "LT NEVER plays in preseason games".  If that’s the case, why gouge the fans this way?  I know why.  Because they’re the NFL, and they can.  But it still doesn’t make it right.

In this era of technology, can’t we band together as fans and stand up to this?  I’m going to have to send Nestor a memo.

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I realize it’s golf, but I must make note of Tiger Woods’ 13th Major Championship in the PGA.  If you’re a fan of the game as I am, you more than likely watched not just yesterday’s round, but parts of the first three as well.  Tiger won this thing on Friday with his amazing 63 and on Saturday when he simply wouldn’t mis-hit a ball off the tee.  His iron play is truly awesome.  He cuts, bends and spins the ball with impunity.  And when he’s dialed in with the short stick, absolutely no human can catch him.  But I think he tweaked his ankle yesterday with that fist pump after a birdie from the collar.  Better not get hurt, Tiger.  That’s the ONLY way anyone can beat you.

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Anybody heard if the Orioles signed that Wieters guy yet?

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Tomorrow’s Headline:  Brian Roberts Complains About All Those Yankees Fans In Their Ballpark

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