Saturday, November 25, 2006

Lincoln Mark 9 - The Car Ford Must Build To Save The Lincoln Brand

Over the past 10 years, Ford Motor Company has ruined the Lincoln brand simply by robbing it of its identity forged over 40 years. Lincolns were always luxury cars and not trucks or SUVs. Yet in its unreasonable march to have an SUV for every taste Ford wrecked Lincoln and paid less attention to its signature brands the Town Car and the Mark series.

These cars were the backbone of Lincoln for years. Bill Ford may say that they don't do well in focus groups, but I counter that Ford took the passion out of them. That has transfered to Mercedes and BMW, and if they can make cars that stir the soul, why can't Ford make a Lincoln that shakes the blood.

A Lincoln like the Mark 9 Concept car. A car introduced in 2001 that Ford still has not made. No wonder observers are betting on Ford's demise; they don't roll the dice and make cars like this. This would -- with the proper marketing -- save Ford and reclaim Lincolns's position as a luxury brand against Cadillac.

Jim Mora Sr. Is Off-Base: Is This Because Michael Vick's Black?

Recently, Jim Mora Sr. made a comment that Michael Vick was a "coach killer." I really think that's an off-base statement, and I've got to wonder to what degree Michael Vick's skin color has to do with this. I mean if Mora Sr. was the coach of the Falcons, would he have started, let alone draft Vick?

I say no.

I state this based on a lot of drive-time hours spent listening to the elder Mora on Fox. One day, Mora said that he'd routinely hire any coach with an Italian last name. He did say this, went on and on about it, and I fumed. I was thinking "I guess that's a weird way of saying he'd never give a young black head coach a chance."


So I immediately formed the view that the elder Mora may have a race issue that clouds how he sees NFL talent, including Michael Vick. Mr. Mora, I've got news, the problem with the Falcons passing game rests in the design of the passing game, not in Michael Vick.

I was just watching the NFL Network's telecast replay of the Falcons / Ravens game of last Sunday. I noticed that the passes called by Mora Junior's staff -- Greg Knapp -- were all five or seven step drops or play action. No three step drops. None of the quick passes to receivers who are standing on the line of scrminage. Nothing to take the pressure off the Falcons offensive line. Nothing.

The passes were the same one's I've seen the Falcons run game after game -- in other words, they're predictable.

So when the passing pocket collapsed, as did happen often, Vick was forced to run.

This is bad coaching in action. The Falcons are great at designing running plays for Vick, but terrible -- and I mean just bad -- at creating a great passing system.

And Michael Vick gets blamed for a problem that would have given backup Matt Schaub a separated shoulder.


The Falcons need to fix their passing game, before it's too late.

Jim Mora Says Michael Vick Is A "Coach Killer" - AP

I will comment on this in a separate post, but here's the news. I think Jim Sr's way off base here.

Vick 'speechless' after coach's father rips him
Falcons rally around Vick after elder Mora calls QB a 'coach killer'

Chris Gardner / AP
Falcons quarterback Michael Vick has struggled in the last three games. Earlier this week, Jim Mora's father labeled Vick as a "coach killer" on his radio show.

Updated: 2:02 p.m. AKT Nov 22, 2006

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. - The Atlanta Falcons closed ranks around embattled quarterback Michael Vick, who was clearly stunned by reports that Jim Mora’s father referred to No. 7 as a “coach killer.”

Vick said Wednesday that he shut off his cell phone because he was getting so many calls about comments made by Mora’s father, a former NFL coach who shares the same name with his son.

“Honestly, I don’t even know what to say,” Vick said. “I think it was inappropriate. But, hey, when you’re commentating, I guess you’ve got a right to say what you want to say. I just keep playing football. At the same time, it’s crazy.”

Earlier this week, during his show on Fox Sports Radio, the elder Mora agreed with the co-host’s description of Vick as a “coach killer.”

“It worries me a little bit because my son is the head coach down there,” Mora added. “But he’s a great athlete, my son likes him a lot, he’s a good kid. But he’s not a passer. And you need a passer at quarterback to be successful consistently in the National Football League. And he ain’t getting it done in that category.”

The younger Mora said he’s spoken with his father about the statement — “he regrets it” — and went to great lengths to show that he’s still got faith in his quarterback, despite a three-game losing streak that has severely hurt the Falcons’ playoff hopes.

Jason Calacanis Ponders His Next Gig After AOL

Jason Calacanis -- pictured here at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business -- the man credited with putting New York City's growing digital media industry on the map of popular culture and who sold his network of weblogs to AOL for $25 million, is pondering his next job having quit AOL just over a week ago.

On his blog, Jason lists the following possibilities:

1. Weblogs, Inc. of Podcasting
2. Weblogs, Inc of Video
3. Run all Nick Denton news all the time.
4. Become a professional poker player.
5. Buy CNET/Become CEO of CNET (no offer has been made--really)
6. Buy an ailing newspaper, reinvent.
6. Become a VC
7. Put 100% of my energy into CalacanisCast/JasonNation
8. Take a job at a Hollywood agency and start over in the movie business
9. Do a media roll-up (i.e. buy 20 small to medium-sized media properties and take get them to scale)
10. Partner with Peter Rojas and start a gadget company (i.e. a non-DRM, wifi enabled, Mp3/Media player)
You guys have any ideas?

If you do visit his blog, which you can do by clicking on the link to it from this post..