B&B Rapid Fire: Manziel, Elam, Winston and More

March 03, 2014 | WNST Staff

By: Brett Dickinson and Barry Kamen

Each week on the Brett & Barry Show (Saturdays 9am-12pm), we gather each others’ analysis of the big news stories and headlines of the week for a couple minutes a piece in a segment we call Rapid Fire.  We will post our answers in blog form every week to a visual version, with links to our segment in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault.

Listen HERE to last week’s Rapid Fire Segment.

Barry 1: During the first week of Spring Training, Frank Robinson visited the Orioles in Sarasota, where he bumped into prospect Josh Hart in the hallway of the facility.  When Hart did not recognize the Hall of Famer, Manager Buck Showalter assigned him a research report on Robinson’s career and impact for the organization and the MLB.  What is your reaction to Showalter handing out a homework assignment to the 19 year old prospect?

BD: I absolutely love this move by Buck, as a man that knows baseball and the history of the game.  I think more players need to understand how they received the opportunity to be on a major league roster; it started with players, like Frank Robinson, paving the way.  A lot is lost with younger generations, when it comes to appreciation for those who changed the game for the better.  Josh Hart will not only be a smarter person because of this “assignment,” but a better ball player as well.  He has the opportunity to make millions upon millions of dollars in the near future, which would not have been possible without Frank Robinson.


Utah Valley BrawlBrett 1: After a conference game between Utah Valley and New Mexico State, a brawl broke out on the court, when a player threw the basketball at his opponent (Watch the Video HERE).  Players, coaches and even fans began throwing punches after a court-storming.  Should the NCAA ban court-storming, citing safety issues for everyone involved?

BK: Although the Southeastern Conference has had success in banning the joyous, silly tradition, I do not think that the NCAA has the willpower or ability to get involved. This particular incident is very sad, as two schools made national news for the wrong reasons. I hope that we can get back to rooting for our respective teams, enjoying rivalries for what they are, and allow college students to enjoy a major victory with their team.

Jameis Winston BaseballBarry 2: We mentioned a couple of weeks ago that Seahawks QB, Russell Wilson, was working out with the Texas Rangers during Spring Training (read our reaction HERE).  Now Heisman winner and National Championship QB, Jameis Winston is playing baseball for Florida State during the football off season. Do you think he could be a professional two-sport star?

BD: Like I mentioned before, I am not opposed to the idea of another Deion Sanders or Brian Jordan or Bo Jackson, wrecking havoc in two different sports.  The problem is none of those athletes were a QB; it just takes too much dedication in preparation to become elite in the NFL.  Winston could be the first overall pick in next year’s NFL draft, which means he will have the added pressure of performing right away. Taking time away from the mental grind that is involved in not only mastering an offensive scheme, but  earning the respect of your teammates as the face of the franchise and leader of the team, would simply be a mistake.


Johnny ManzielBrett 2: Thankfully ESPN analyst (and QB guru), Ron Jaworski stated that he would not take Texas A&M QB, Johnny Manziel, in the first three rounds of the upcoming draft (making me feel much better about my analysis).  You already know that I do not believe he is a first round prospect (let alone a top 10 pick, as heard HERE), but what is your reaction to “Jaws” analysis on the controversial former Heisman winner?

BK: Jaworski’s analysis on Manziel may not be popular, but it is more accurate than those experts who consider Johnny Football to be a top 10 prospect. The success of Russell Wilson, a shorter quarterback with abnormally large hands and great awareness, has paved the way for Manziel to be fairly evaluated. However, there are a lot of question marks when it comes to Manziel, both as a person as a player. Teams in the top 10 who are in the market for a quarterback (Jacksonville, Cleveland, Oakland) would all be making a mistake to use their first selection on Manziel. By giving Manziel a mid-round grade, Jaworski is essentially saying that the former Heisman winner would be best served in a backup role to start his career, with the potential to become a starter. Following the NFL Combine, Manziel still appears to be a top 10 pick, but teams would be wise to take note of the dissenting opinion.


Matt Elam ShoesBarry 3: This NFL off season, most players are taking time off relaxing, preparing their minds and bodies for another grueling  season. Well, Ravens second year Safety, Matt Elam, has a different approach; he took a job as a shoe salesman at Finish Line to gain a better understanding of the business (which he plans to invest in the future).  What is your reaction to Elam taking a job this off season, preparing for his life after football?

BD: After the past couple weeks of bad news for the Ravens, this definitely uplifts the spirits, when looking at a young man that just simply gets “it.”  Elam obviously already has an understanding that football does not last forever, while preparing for a career after he hangs up his cleats.  Realistically, he could only hope to last in the NFL for the next decade; meaning he needs to find a way to occupy his time for the following 40-50 years of his life.  Add in the fact that with his notoriety as a professional athlete, the money he does make while on the field, will likely not last to support his family in the future.  Elam has proven to be a smart and mature young man beyond his years, with his humility to clock in and out of a “low-paying” job; professional sports needs more people like this.


Jim HarbaughBrett 3: Reports came out that the Browns tried to work out a deal to trade for San Francisco 49ers Head Coach, Jim Harbaugh. Looking at a deal that would cost multiple draft picks, for a coach who has led his team to three straight championship games (and one Super Bowl loss).  Would you make such a deal if you were either team?

BK: The Cleveland Browns should not be ashamed to admit that they were interested in Jim Harbaugh. He has proven himself to be one of the top coaches in both college and professional football, and his track record of taking bad teams and turning them into winners speaks for itself. The Browns have not had the proper leadership in place for quite some time, and getting a man like Harbaugh via trade makes sense, no matter what the cost. Unlike Robert Griffin III, there isn’t an injury risk associated with dealing a number of high draft picks.

If I were the San Francisco 49ers, I would have entertained, but not accepted an offer for Harbaugh. While the 49ers could absolutely put the extra draft picks to good use, there is no way of putting a value on Harbaugh’s relationship with QB Colin Kaepernick. The 49ers are just too close to winning the Super Bowl to make such a drastic change.