Wednesday, September 7, 2005
Page 2 Quickie: September 6, 2005
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:
Greatest of All Time?
Era comparisons are tough.
So are positions.
So are offensive schemes.
ESPN.com experts ranked Jerry Rice No. 2 all-time,
behind Brown and ahead of Montana. It's hard to
disaggregate Rice from Montana (and Young).
Would Rice have been G.O.A.T. if he hadn't been
playing with those QBs? Or in Walsh's innovative
That's the wrong question.
The better one is this:
Would any of those guys have been who they were if not
for Jerry Rice? Amazingly, he was the one who made
that O go (as a receiver!)
He was, without argument, the greatest WR of all time.
He's a living superlative: Hardest worker. Best
route-runner. Most prolific stats.
So I'll take Rice over Brown, joining ESPN Era fans in
a generation gap that undervalues Brown because we
never came close to seeing him play.
The best argument for Rice's being No. 1 is that he
didn't walk away at his peak, like Brown. Instead of
"What If?," Rice gave us "What Is."
In the final analysis, comparisons of Brown and Rice
are fun but maddeningly theoretical. Let's leave it
Rice was the ESPN Era's best football player, but, far
more important, he was as close to perfect as a
football player can be.
More on Bonds
Why shouldn't SF use Barry in
some limited role, like pinch-hitter? Forget his
likelihood to get on base; he turns a noncontender
Latest: The NFL has moved Week 2's
Saints-Giants game to 7:30 on Monday on ABC (with the
game moving to ESPN when MNF starts at 9).
National interest in Katrina has turned the
Saints into the league's must-see team, but make no
mistake: It has nothing to do with the product on the
(And if you haven't made a contribution to relief yet,
consider doing it during the game broadcast.)
Meanwhile, if you missed Monday's Quickie, you missed
my argument blasting the NFL for even considering
playing the entire Saints home schedule at the
Upshot: Fans in the region have so little to cling to
right now, can't the NFL support a historically strong
fan base by keeping the team in the region? (See Q It
Up for more).
Superlative of the Day: The quarters
match between Andre and James will be the pairing of
the U.S. Open, if not of tennis in 2005.
Agassi is merely the oldest men's player in the field
to make it to the U.S. Open quarters. (Andre's the
reigning old man of tennis, period.)
Blake, tennis' feel-good story of the year, is only
the second wild card ever to make it to the
Who to root for? Andre has the age sympathy, but
Blake's story is simply too good to root against. But
for the casual fan, there is no downside.
Schilling shelled: It's gone from
excusable "just getting back into starting" anomaly to
his regular MO. Playoff stopper? Hardly.
King Felix Watch: Lack of IP is no reason
Hernandez can't (or shouldn't) win AL Rookie of the
Year (Mon: 7 IP, 0 R, 5 K, 4 H)
Wild Card: The best-case scenario in the NL is
if the Nats earn it; DC beats FLA for 3rd W in a row,
now 1.5 games behind HOU for WC (HOU plays PHI).
CFB: Who's NOT No. 1?
OKLA's title hopes are shot. VA Tech
nearly joined the Sooners. Add Miami to the list after Monday
night's ugly loss to FSU.
And yet: Expect your laugh of the week when the
rankings come out. Inevitably, inertia-driven
rep-loving voters won't punish Oklahoma nearly
It's very simple: They were Preseason No. 8 for no
reason other than rep. But with actual evidence,
they're not even close to Top 25-worthy.
If I were a voter, I wouldn't have OU anywhere in my
Top 25. And any voter who doesn't drop 'em from 8 to
oblivion doesn't deserve the job.
Pot/Kettle? Never: I picked Louisville as Rosy, but
after UL eked out a win over Kentucky, right now they
don't deserve that lofty call.
NFL Preview: NFC
E: Eagles; N: Vikings;
S: Panthers; W: Seahawks;
WC: Bucs (S), Cards (W)
NFC Champs: PHI over CAR
Vick still allergic to West Coast O
Arizona is the new San Diego.
Detroit is the old Arizona.
Are they "America's Team"?
This week's Preview Schedule:
Wednesday: AFC Preview
Thursday: Playoff/SB picks
(Hint: Champs PLAY on Thurs.)
Miss Monday's DQ?
Miss Monday's Quickie?
Here's a recap:
*Saints must play locally.
*New Vocab: "Soonered." Ha ha.
*Heisman Watch: Wk 1 edition!
*MLB Wrap: Colon for AL Cy?
*And much, much more!
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