May 27, 2005
Around the NFL: Friday Edition
BY: Ian Logue/PatsFans.com
Despite conflicting reports earlier this week, it looks like Miami Dolphins running back Ricky Williams is indeed serious about returning to the NFL after all.
When asked during an online chat recently about his future, Williams had said, “I honestly don’t know.” According to the South Florida Sun-Sentinal he knows enough to have reportedly contacted the NFL about being reinstated in the league’s drug-testing program.
Williams originally retired right before the start of training camp last season, which left the Dolphins in tough shape considering the fact that their whole running attack revolved around him. Their ground game was more or less non-existent last season, with Sammy Morris leading the team in rushing with just an anemic 523-yards rushing. It has also led to some hard feelings in the Dolphins locker room and will likely lead to some interesting quotes by the time training camp rolls around.
To make matters worse he’s hardly in playing shape, with the Palm Beach Post reporting that he’s weighing in at just 195 pounds. That puts him 30 pounds lighter than the guy who used to be able to lower his shoulder and punish defenders. He’s now the size of a wide receiver, and it will be interesting to see whether or not he’ll have the mental discipline to get himself back into playing condition.
After all, we’re talking about a guy who publicly admitted just one year ago that he was tired of football and wanted to be free of everything that went along with it.
“I'm finally free,” Williams told the Miami Herald last July when he announced he was done with football. “Human beings aren't supposed to be controlled and told what to do. They're supposed to be given direction and a path. Don't tell me what I can and can't do. Please.”
Coming back to the league will definitely challenge his issue with authority. According to the Sun-Sentinal the NFL will now be subjecting him to as many as 10 tests a month. His travel plans are also hampered since he’ll now have to notify program administrators of any plans to leave town since players can apparently be contacted about tests taking place within hours.
It’s a lot to handle for a guy who admitted that other than practices and games he couldn’t stand everything else that goes along with life in the National Football League. Now he’ll have to deal with the media and the autograph-seeking fans, two things he claims to “hate”.
”I loved to practice and I loved to play, but I hated to be in meetings,” Williams told the San Francisco Chronicle back in November. “[I] hated to talk to the media, hated to have cameras in my face, hated to sign autographs. I hated to do all those things.''
Now he’ll have to hold his nose and open wide, because he’s going to get what will likely be an even bigger taste of all of it. The questions from the media will be fast and furious, and with websites like screwricky.com out there, fan reactions to his return don’t appear to be warm and welcoming. Not to mention the displeasure that his teammates have openly admitted they feel for him.
He thought it was tough before. Now he’ll find out just how strong he really is.
A Crennel/Law Reunion?
Former New England Patriots defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel appears that he may be interested in recruiting one of his own out in Cleveland. According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer the new Browns head coach is interested in sitting down with former Patriots cornerback Ty Law to see exactly where he’s at physically as Law continues to recover from a broken foot which sidelined him for most of last season.
"I haven't spoken with Ty, but Ty knows how I feel about him and I don't think there's any question about how he feels about me," Crennel told the newspaper. "His injury situation is one that has to be resolved.”
Get A Room
According to the Nashville City Paper Tennessee Titans WR Tyrone Calico, 24, was cited for public indecency after he was caught having sex with an 18-year-old woman in his sport-utility vehicle in Nashville on May 12. Head coach Jeff Fisher apparently wasn’t too pleased. “Everything we do involves choices and decisions, and I’ll just say that I think he’d like to have this one over again,” Fisher told the newspaper. “He dug himself a little hole, and he’s on his own to get himself out of it.
“It’s a situation where you need to make better choices, and better decisions, as far as I’m concerned.”
Calico has also reportedly been rehabbing an ACL injury in his left knee that will keep him from being able to practice until training camp. He also reportedly denied any sexual activity was taking place. Maybe he was just getting some rehab work in, who knows.
Henry Headed to Tennessee
The Tennessean reported on Thursday that the Titans are still interested in Buffalo Bills running back Travis Henry. However the Bills haven’t moved away from their demand of a 3rd round draft pick for him. So far the Titans haven't reportedly been willing to go that high after Tennessee was only willing to offer a fifth-round pick for Henry on draft day. The dialogue apparently is continuing.
"We're interested in Henry," Titans owner Bud Adams told the newspaper yesterday from the NFL Meetings in Washington, D.C. "He wants to get out of Buffalo. We think he has a lot of ability. We think he has four good years left. Because of where he went to college I think he'd be real popular with the fans.
"I think he'd be a real good addition."
Warner Lands In Arizona
For some strange reason Arizona Cardinals head coach Dennis Green signed Kurt Warner and then handed him the starting over Josh McCown. I have no problem with the signing, however I do feel considering how badly this guy has played in recent years it doesn’t make a lot of sense to hand him the job before evaluating Warner’s performance during training camp and then making a decision. For all the Tom Brady detractors who call him a product of the so-called, “system”, take a minute to think about this. Warner was in an extremely prolific offense but couldn’t improvise and make big plays after teams figured him out following the Rams Super Bowl season. There were those who had said that teams figured Brady out after the first season which is why he 'struggled' and the Patriots missed the playoffs during his second season as a starter. Since then Brady has gone on to win two more championships, while Warner has gone on to play for two more teams. I wonder what those same doubters are thinking now that he’s got two more rings on his fingers.
Are You Serious?
For some odd reason it’s a big deal out in Denver that Jerry Rice isn’t interested in asking Rod Smith if he can wear his #80. The idea is so far fetched it’s ridiculous. After all, Smith is the entering his 11th season with the Broncos and is the team’s all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns, not to mention the team captain. This shouldn’t even be a discussion. "Jerry is not going to ask anybody for any numbers," Rice’s Agent, Jim Steiner, told the Rocky Mountain News on Wednesday. "It never came up. We never asked. It was never discussed of him wearing No. 80. All that was discussed is, 'What numbers are available?'” For that quote to come out means that someone must have asked him the question. Good grief.
Good For Troy
One Final Point: Everyone in New England is happy to see Patriots wide receiver Troy Brown back for another season. The good news is that while he took less money to come back to New England, he’s taking advantage of the fact he’s had such a long tenure in this region by making up for some of the money he lost by not going to New Orleans. According to the Boston Herald Brown was reportedly able to cash in on a three-year promotional agreement with TD Banknorth. One point that obviously may have been lost was that in New Orleans he wouldn’t have been as recognized and therefore not as marketable. Thankfully this deal worked out just fine for Troy and the people who will get to hear those commercials.
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