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Bye week reading, "The Blind Side"...

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by DarrylS, Oct 28, 2009.

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  1. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Just about done "The Blind Side", by Michael Lewis (who also wrote Moneyball).. very well done, there are two stories that feed into each other.. the evolution of the left tackle and the story of Michael Oher.. The Oher story is interesting, and one of those feel good things. But the left tackle is fascinating and how this position has evolved essentially since the advent of Lawrence Taylor...

    It draws from many sources, Bill Walsh seems to be a major contributor, as there is quite a bit about how SF had to change their blocking schemes and whole offense, as the OLB changed so much since LT.. no longer could you just stick a big body on the left side...

    It also talks about Lawrence Taylor quite a bit, and when he came on the scene in 1981... coincidentally the LB coach for the Giants was BB in 1981... and how the Giants braintrust used LT and the game essentially changed..

    This is right up there with "Education of a Coach", in terms of being well written and thought provoking... highly recommend.

    BTW read along the way that Ty Warren kind of felt that Oher is a jerk as he runs his mouth too much for a rookie, there are other D lineman who have made similar comments...
     
  2. Pat the Pats Fan

    Pat the Pats Fan In the Starting Line-Up

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    #50 Jersey

    Well Oher is a Raven, so it's not to much of a leap for him to run his mouth and be a jerk too.... par for the course I suppose......
     
  3. bitsygirl

    bitsygirl Practice Squad Player

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    They've made the book into a movie. It will be released next month.
     
  4. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    For sake of clarity, the part about him running his mouth, could have been left out as the part of the book that enjoyed most had to do with the impact of LT and the subsequent evolution of the Left Tackle... the Oher story was secondary.
     
  5. aluminum seats

    aluminum seats In the Starting Line-Up

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    The problem is that while the Oher story might have been secondary to you, it dominates the book. And that "touching" story is such a crock. Yes, the wealthy white family adopts the poor black boy.....who just happens to be a great football player! Who just happens to end up at Dad's alma mater! Brings a tear to your eye. Ugh.
     
  6. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Was pretty clear about how I thought the part about the evolution of the Left Tackle, was clearly more important than the story about Oher...

    Perhaps it dominated that way you read it, but found the other information infinitely more valuable...
     
  7. tombonneau

    tombonneau In the Starting Line-Up

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    I agree. The Tohey's (sp?) come off as phony, possessive of "their" Michael, and self-serving. Nothing touching about it. I'd love to know how long Michael would have stayed with them if he were 5'6 130. The Oher story is certainly interesting from a socioeconomic perspective just to see how many breaks are tolerated within the school system for someone with athletic ability. I mean when it came to classes Oher was as dumb as dirt (through no fault of his own, he didn't exactly have a great upbringing) and the breaks didn't stop coming.

    What's maybe most unenjoyable is how he is completely just thrown into the football system and displays absolutely no joy or passion for the sport (at least he doesn't come across that way.) Reminds me a lot of the movie "Sugar" if anyone saw that, about Dominican baseball players.

    Anyway, the history of the LT sprinkled throughout the book is most interesting.
     
  8. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    That is my contention, coupled with the evolution of the LT with lots of info from Bill Walsh makes the book enjoyable... the rest is what it is.
     
  9. aluminum seats

    aluminum seats In the Starting Line-Up

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    I'm not criticizing you--I was much more interested in the LT stuff too (I thought that's what the book was going to be about.) All I'm saying is that objectively the Oher stuff dominated the book--probably made up 80% of it--and Lewis (who's smart as hell, so it's strange) didn't seem at all skeptical of the motives of the family, which seem pretty blatant to me.
     
  10. Synovia

    Synovia In the Starting Line-Up

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    Different strokes I guess.


    I didn't see it that way at all. I saw it like this:

     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2009
  11. aluminum seats

    aluminum seats In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think both are true.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2009
  12. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Never should have posted this thread... flush
     
  13. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Why? I, for one understand where you are coming from- I've read plenty of books on the NFL where the secondary information turns out to be more interesting and appealing than the drama/marketing cop out.

    For instance now I am reading "More than a game" by Brian Billick where the storyline itself is nothing noteworthy, but there are fascinating tidbits in it, including quite a few about BB.

    BB was one of the first to stop giving potential FA the royal treatment.. he simply gave them an economical room at the Renaissance, had them come in for a chalkboard session and ordered takeout pizza while all the other GM's were wine and dine types, whisking them around in limo's, etc.

    Billick also talks about how hard it really is to identify a franchise QB in the draft. That chapter alone is very interesting.
     
  14. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Because it descended into the inane Oher argument, rather than the evolution of the Left Tackle which was much more interesting than the Oher stuff...
     
  15. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    There are a lot more people who that read threads but don't remark. I'm sure they understand what you were trying to talk about.
     
  16. shakadave

    shakadave In the Starting Line-Up

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    I read this book a couple years ago and found it interesting, including the Oher parts. I got a good smile at the part about Oher continuing to block the trash-talking high school opponent all the way into a chain link fence off the field. I followed Oher's career and was interested on draft day to see where he went. My understanding is that he is talented but not a Patriots type of player.

    To address something mentioned above, the Toheys (sp?) didn't just use Michael, but apparently were going on to adopt many other kids from disadvantaged backgrounds.

    I once found a photo or two of the family in the book by googling. The daughter was more ordinary-looking than I guessed from reading the book.
     
  17. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    It's a decent read. It's been out, what 5 years now?

    The biggest controversy/issue with the book is the characters were written in a way that critics questioned if they would have ever helped out this poor kid if they didn't think he had any pro talent.
     
  18. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    I agree. Definitely not a Pats player. By all accounts in the book this guy is not very bright up top, whether it be book-smart or even football-smart. It's a miracle he even passed the basic standards to get into college.

    Someone else commented that it's being made into a movie. I saw a commercial for it the other day, it stars Sandra Bullock. It looks to be different from the book, in how they are presumably going to portray the husband-wife dynamic.
     
  19. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I never cared for Billick the HC, just exuded arrogance. But I've liked Billick the analyst and after reading your mention and finding this excerpt online I think this book is added to my christmas list...

    Books : More than a Game : Excerpts
     
  20. Hardboiled

    Hardboiled Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Interesting to read these comments. It's a book about Michael Oher who is a success because of the valued position of Left Tackle. It's called The Blind Side because Oher will be paid lots of money to protect it. To tell Michael Oher's story, the book needs to explain that.

    This book was a staff summer read where I work. Woman and non-sports fans hated the football history part. It created a lot of complaints. I told them to skip the football parts. While people here might tell others to skip the Oher parts. It was an ok read. I felt the book was sloppily put together. Chapters seem thrown together at the end.

    I was highly suspicious of the tricks the family pulled to get Oher NCAA academically eligible. Because of that, I'm wasn't sure what to take away from Oher's story. I wanted to know more about Big Tony who was taking care of Oher at the start of the book. There is good football stuff in the book, and I can see where some would just want that. But the book is about Oher.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2009
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