by Michael Lombardi
May 26, 02010
QUOTE: “Apathy can be overcome by enthusiasm, and enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal, with takes the imagination by storm, and second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice.” – Arnold J. Toynbee
Jeff Fisher and Chris Johnson
Titans head coach Jeff Fisher wants to sit down with star running back Chris Johnson in an effort to bring Johnson into camp. Little known to many people, Johnson’s agent, Joel Segal, was in Nashville last week discussing multiple proposals with general manager Mike Reinfeldt in an effort to reward Johnson for out-playing his rookie contract. Segal knows he’s fighting an uphill battle, but he has Johnson’s two-year production on his side. Segal is attempting to be proactive in his effort to get the team to reward Johnson, and the Titans want players to honor their contracts — at least for the first three years. Both sides have strong positions, and working behind the scenes is best for both.
Since Johnson and his agent have met with the Titans, what will a meeting between Fisher and Johnson produce? It will open the lines of communication between them, and since Fisher has been involved with the organization since 1994, he knows how owner Bud Adams will behave in these kinds of situations. Fisher doesn’t do contracts in Tennessee, but he can be the voice of reason with Johnson. So the more the two sides talk, the better the chances of finding a resolution to their differences.
New York/New Jersey
The Sopranos and the New York family shared the Esplanade project based in Newark, N.J., and now in real life the NFL has a Super Bowl in the Meadowlands shared by New York and New Jersey. How come NY/NJ always shares, whether it’s on TV or in real life? Tuesday, NFL owners voted to give the New York/New Jersey area the Super Bowl in 2014 for our first very outdoor cold-weather Super Bowl.
February is not a warm month, and despite all these predictions about the average temperatures in February in the Garden State hovering around 40 degrees, the game will be cold for the players and cold for the fans. Will it be a good Super Bowl? Who can ever really say, but NY/NJ is a great setting for this event. It will be a fun week, but it will also be a security nightmare — especially for anyone who has to enter New York every day for work.
I know it will be cold, and both teams will have to be ready to handle the elements — wind being the primary concern. In the old Meadowlands, wind was a problem. Giants QB Eli Manning actually has a higher quarterback rating on the road than at home and a higher percentage of pass completions, albeit a very small difference, largely because of the wind. Before this game is played in 2014, we’ll know the wind factor in the new stadium, which will help the teams that get to play in the game handle the elements. Cold is not a big problem for the players — but wind does affect the game. So instead of discussing the average temp in February, we need to determine how the wind might alter the game.
My only other suggestion would be to make sure Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi and all NY/NJ acts handle the pregame and halftime entertainment and that the crew from “The Sopranos” welcomes the fans to the Garden State.
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