Monday, November 07, 2005

The Packers should not go after TO

I was listened to AM 1250 on the way to work this morning and they were arguing that the Packers should pick up TO. If they are smart, they will stay as far away from him as possible. TO is all about TO. If Favre has a bad game, TO will be on the sideline fuming, and after the game will go on about how they would have won if Brady was their quarterback. On the field, if Favre throws for 300 yards but TO only has 1 catch for 10 yards, he will be in Favre's ear. TO is more concerned about his stats than winning. If you caught his press conference after the Super Bowl, you would have noticed that not once did he mention any anger at not winning the game. He used it as a platform to proclaim that he performed a miracle by coming back from his broken leg and playing well, and then threw fire at McNabb by inferring that the reason they lost was that McNabb was tired at the end of the game. Everything there was said to make himself look good and to blame everyone else for the loss.

Chemistry matters in football. With TO, you lose that chemistry. When was the last time you saw a Super Bowl team win when there was dissention in the locker room? The entire New England team is together, and it's no coincidence that they have won 3 of the last 4 Super Bowls (as a sidebar, I think one of the worst proclamations by an analyst was when Tom Jackson on ESPN declared that the entire Patriots locker room was against Belichick after he got rid of Lawyer Malloy and they had the opening loss to Buffalo in 2003. They finished 14-2 and won the Super Bowl against the Panthers). When Green Bay won in 1997, the two leaders of the team were Favre and Reggie White, and they were on the same page with Holmgren to lead them to victory. Even when the Ravens won, they trusted Dilfer not to screw up, and he didn't. He played within the system and let the defense dominate other teams. Sure, there are going to be people on a team that don't like each other; however when Sunday comes around, the championship teams function as one unit, with each player trusting the others to make plays they should make. That cannot happen with TO on your team. You know each time McNabb exits a huddle, in the back of his mind he is wondering what the reaction will be if he misses TO on an open route. The same is said if the team decides to run all day and abandon a passing game. The teams will all have to worry about TO. If you paid attention, the two playoff games that Philly won last year without TO were the ultimate team performances, with both sides of the ball dominating. I think Philly made the right move today by suspending TO for the season, and if the Packers are smart, they will stay as far away from TO as possible. Let the Vikings sign him; they seem to be OK with negative publicity directed their way.

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