Taking a cue from Randy Moss, I decided to have my own personal press conference – asking and answering my own questions that run through my mind.
Q. Who was the better draft choice? Ndamukong Suh or Sam Bradford? A. I care about this answer only because the St. Louis Rams are my favorite NFL team. Ndamukong Suh? Duh, Suh is only one of the greatest players ever to play at Nebraska. I’m a college guy and really don’t follow the NFL that closely, but the play of the two is also tied to my love for Nebraska and Laura’s love of Oklahoma and our respect for both Suh’s and Bradford’s skills.
Naturally, I wanted the Rams to draft Suh, just like I wish they’d move back to sunny L.A. Instead, they took a much-needed quarterback in Bradford, but one with a surgically repaired shoulder who never took a snap from under center in college.
Now, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King points out that Suh is not only the defensive rookie of the year midway through the season – Suh just might be the defensive player of the year. Suh has 6.5 sacks at this point. Vaunted linemen Jared Allen, Julius Pepper and Albert Haynesworth, combined, only have five sacks.
However, Bradford has been a revelation for the Rams. He has been poised and efficient. The Rams have already won four games and have a great chance to win the weak NFC Western Division. Should Bradford stay healthy, the Rams will have a quarterback that might be able to lead the team back to glory.
There’s no right answer here. I love watching Suh dominate, but the Rams needed Bradford badly. For sheer insanity, let’s have a Rams – Chiefs Super Bowl. That would be crazy fun.
Q. Now that Cliff Lee got shelled in two World Series games, should the New York Yankees even pursue signing him? Won’t he be another Bronx pitching bust? A. For heaven’s sake, yes to the first question. Maybe, just maybe, yes to the second. There is something about coming to the Yankees as a pitcher. There have been a few great deals but more awful deals. Javy Vasquez and A.J. Burnett are the most recent bombs. Vasquez couldn’t cut it in New York on his first try, so why did they give him another shot?
One scary rumor is a possible trade of top Yankee catching prospect Jesus Montero to the the Kansas City Royals for Zack Greinke. Nothing like taking a pitcher with a past history of some mental instability and running him out to the mound in Yankee Stadium. That is a recipe for disaster.
I’d hang onto Montero. He is supposed to be a big hitter but not the greatest catcher in the world. Jorge Posada made a big living out of that combination for years, but his days behind the plate have to be numbered now that teams run on him at will.
The Yankees’ big problem is that they are getting old fast. The “Core Four” are nearing an end. Derek Jeter, Posada and Mariano Rivera are sure to be back. My bet is Andy Pettite will re-up as well. I got trapped thinking Jeter’s revived play in 2009 would carry over. It didn’t. Jeter is still a great player, but his numbers are down and his contract is up. He will always be a Yankee, but should he continue to be the Yankee shortstop much longer? I’d be looking for another soon.
Signing Lee is the most logical move the Yankees can make to get back to the World Series next season. Lee is amazing against everyone but the Giants and seems to be the kind of player unperturbed by the bright lights. The Yankees might just go after outfielder Carl Crawford as well, just to keep him from signing with the Red Sox.
Crawford was once committed to play football for Nebraska and would have likely been a great quarterback. The Huskers’ hopes of seeing Crawford in Scarlet and Cream died when Crawford was drafted in the first round of the baseball draft. The same might happen to another Husker commit, Bubba Starling, out of Gardner-Edgerton High near Kansas City. An electrifying quarterback, Starling is also a likely first-rounder in the spring baseball draft.
Continuing on the Yankee/Husker theme, one problem the Yankees must solve is their lack of middle relief. Totally awful all season. Sorry, but former Husker Joba Chamberlain is done and should be done as a Yankee soon.
Q. Did Tour de France winner Alberto Contador dope or did he really eat a tainted steak? A. When will people stop trying to create the most lame excuses imaginable? The litany of panic-stricken cheaters is long and completely ridiculous. Would someone – just once – stand up and be honest. How do these people live with themselves and their lies day after day?
Q. What was the worst news from Tuesday’s election day? A. It would be easy to say the impatience of the voting public would be my top choice, but it is not. The worst news was out-going Governor Mark Parkinson’s firing of Rod Bremby, the top administrator of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. This unexpected move was shrouded in the deceit that it paved the way for a smooth transition for the Governor-elect.
In truth, Bremby’s firing paves the way for the swift approval of the Holcomb coal plant’s construction permit before tougher EPA rules go into effect in 2011. Big coal has won out. Parkinson has what he believes will be his grand legacy. All this comes from a man that swore he would never allow another coal plant in Kansas. A flip-flop like this is to be expected from someone who shamelessly switched parties for his own political gain. In his wake, Parkinson leaves Bremby out of work despite a proven record of sound environmental decisions based on their long-term good and impact for all Kansans.
The bad news is compounded by the fact that again and again the voting public wait for someone to wave a magic wand over our city, state and national problems. When swift change does not come, the interest is not to roll up sleeves and work, it is to simply run the offenders out. Bremby was a problem because he wanted to see beyond the immediate financial impact of a new coal plant and find alternatives to energy needs that will benefit the air we breath.
The huge fortune Bill Gates has accumulated came from hard work and thought well outside the norm. His efforts are now being directed at the problems of global-warming and climate change. He has a dream of developing carbon-free energy sources for our world and is willing to spend millions. Gates is not trying to take our homes and cars away from us. He is an admitted energy consumer advocate. He does, however, see carbon as a most serious threat and plans to someday eliminate its impact on us all.
Kansas had the opportunity to say no to the carbon waste that coal brings. Instead, Bremby’s firing made it clear that Kansas will only be looking as far ahead as our noses. Once again, impatience rules.
In a Capital-Journal editorial Wednesday morning, the call was for the newly elected to “govern.” They sited unemployment as the top priority. Understand this. It is going to take more time than most are willing to give. Two years will not be enough given our current state of division and blindness to real problems.
Whether you view youself a winner or a loser last Tuesday, the Q. we all should be asking ourselves is how can we be winners if this divisive nature is all we can muster? The A. should always come from the opening line of our Constitution. “We the people…”