Thursday, March 10, 2011

NFL Fans Should Pay For Their Tickets, Not Stadiums

By David Levy-Fan Experience Reporter-Football Reporters Online

The Georgia Dome in Atlanta remains a perfectly fine building for professional football. Still a teenager, it is nowhere near long in the tooth. Capacity is enough to accommodate nearly every Atlanta Falcons fan willing to buy tickets.
Arthur Blank, the team owner, craves a new stadium. That seems akin to trading in your car after it has logged only 20,000 miles, but he can well afford it.  Blank, the former owner of the ubiquitous American home improvement store chain called The Home Depot, has a net worth of $1.2 billion, according to Forbes, and the franchise value has risen 52 per cent since he bought it in 2002 for $545 million.

But wait. Blank expects the quasi-public agency that operates the Dome and the proposed site of a new stadium to issue bonds that would pay some of the costs. That should be 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct, sticking it to taxpayers at the same time that funding for public schools in Georgia is being cut.

This sickness is spreading among NFL team owners. In Minnesota, the Vikings' Zygi Wilf has capitalized on the collapse of the Metrodome's inflatable roof amid a once-in-a-lifetime snowstorm and the fear of the franchise relocating to Los Angeles in his campaign for a replacement stadium. Of course, citizens would contribute to the project. Never mind that Blank might expect Wilf, worth $1.3bn, to pick up their lunch bill.

The shameless nonchalance of these folks who seem detached from reality has generated a shifting of the winds.  We have already experienced it here in New York and New Jersey.

The public, which normally sides with management during labor disputes in American sports, is sympathetic toward the players in a stand-off with owners that has pushed the league to the brink of a lockout.  In a poll conducted by Seton Hall University, 35 per cent who participated backed the players, compared to 22 per cent for their bosses. This, even though the same study found that most contend the players are overpaid.

Taxpayers are increasingly fed up with being forced to become stadium-erecting partners with Rolex-wearing, yacht-sailing jet-setters. Economists nowadays agree on little, but one belief they share is that public support of professional sports offers almost nothing financially in return.

The Giants and Jets grew tired of their shared arena and convinced the government to pitch in for a new-and-improved one. The old Giants Stadium was torn down despite carrying more than $100m in debt that must be paid off by the good people of New Jersey.  Plus, the season ticket holders are also helping flip the bill on the new one with PSL's.  Isn't that double dipping?  The nerve!

Roger Goodell, the NFL commissioner, stands complicit in this wasteful building boom. From his office comes a wink-nod promise of the ultimate in ego gratification for owners: host your own Super Bowl! Just throw up a stadium and you will get the big game. How you bankroll it, that's your business.

Which explains why the 2014 Super Bowl was awarded to New Meadowlands in a region where the average low temperature in February is -2°C.  Which also explains why 22 of 32 teams have moved into fresh digs or had their existing ones totally made over in the last two decades.
In that time, teams have been blessed with more than $7bn in taxpayer subsidies for construction and renovation, according to the NFL Players' Association.

The players union reports that, on average, taxpayers put up 65 per cent of the financing for those projects. Owners found a way to avoid putting in any money for 10 of them; for nine others, their contribution amounted to less than 25 per cent.
Further driving public sentiment toward the players are reports on the sport's inherent physical risk, particularly for victims of post-concussive syndrome that has ravaged retirees. Fans are looking beyond the average salary of $1.9m and discovering other statistics:

$770,000, the median yearly pay.  Three-and-a-half years, the average length of career.  Eleven, the average number of players per team on injured reserve this past season.

While many of us might trade places with the players, the figures show that most of them accumulate more aches and pains than enough wealth to last them a lifetime.

For team owners, it is a different story. Admittance into the club all but guarantees going from rich to richer, experienced from the comfort of a stadium luxury suite.

Fine. That is the American way. But those who knock on government doors seeking handouts to finance mostly unnecessary arenas should instead heed the marketing message aimed at customers of Blank's old home improvement stores.
Do it yourself.

Follow me Twitter @LevysBakeryProd or at

Orb Networks Apple TV Killer Makes Home Digital Entertainment Simple

For those who think Apple's got the upper hand forever with Apple TV, check out Oakland-based Orb Networks new hardware to have your mind blown. The company taken over by the man who's now its CEO, Joe Costello, has created a cool, sexy, and easy-to-use product that makes your iPhone or Android smartphone, or iPod or iPad tablet computer the nerve center for your home digital entertainment system.

And you don't even need a digital television or stereo set.

As the video below, will show (get a cup of coffee and relax because it's 22 minutes long) Mr. Costello and his staff have made a smooth looking, wel, orb called The Orb Caster, that connects with your existing television or stereo and allows you to call up (as an example) videos from any YouTube channel, or Hulu, or ESPN 3, just to give some examples of video sources.

But you can show not only videos, but photos from your smartphone or online platform, too.  In fact, Joe demonstrates this in the video.

As you will see, you download the smartphone app that "calls" the Orb Caster from the Orb Networks website.

Here's the video:

Joe Costello is no stranger to the digital space. The former boardmember of Oracle, and CEO of Cadence (which became the world's supplier of Electronic Design Automation or "EDA" software), Joe's an energetic man who's youthful exuberance for his products and company is infectious.

Costello is a great model for any startup entrepreneur because he feels and believes in what he's doing, and knows he's got something that can change how people live in their homes.  (And on top of that, he invested in the company himself.  The origin of Orb Networks goes back about five years and before Costello; that story's a blog post in itself.)

Orb Networks Blue-Ray

Joe's also excited about his newest offering, the Orb Networks Orb BR software, where "BR" means "Blue Ray." He says "The combined cost of a Blu-ray player and Orb BR software is less expensive
than most of the other Internet TV solutions, like Boxee and Google TV,
while providing more capabilities." In fact, at $19.99 Costello's got a point. In fact, all of the Orb Networks products are competitively priced. The Orb TV is $99 and the Orb Music Player is $79.

It's the same price as Apple TV but with one big difference: the smartphone is the controller, whereas you have to enable Apple's AirPlay provision to use your iPhone with Apple TV.  And even with that, some have complained the ability to stream videos from platforms like YouTube isn't yet "fully baked" on Apple TV.

Check out Orb at  

Tila Tequila Convinces MTV She Stands for Empowering Women

How buzzworthy - Female Empowerment? Tila Tequila? Over the summer Tila Tequila encouraged her army to attack blogger, Nikky Raney, whose only flaw was blogging objectively about "Miss Tila" and her shenanigans. Now, working as an MTV VIP looking through MTV posts it is seen that Tila has done a Yoko Ono cover to the song "Walking On Thin Ice.

The kicker is what MTV writes within the blog post before posting the video:

We have to give Tila credit for empowering and encouraging women not to tolerate an abusive relationship. Tila said she recorded the song "at a time when my life was complicated and I was emotionally drained." Of the video's violence and abuse, she said, "The video was created in a way where the woman isn't just the victim; she is also a survivor. I want women to see that you can get out of an abusive relationship and hopefully do it BEFORE something horrible happens to you or your partner. I am hoping that people can see that this video doesn't promote or glorify abuse; that in fact, it is promoting change and strength."

The music video will not be included within this blog post, because that would be an insult to Yoko Ono - who originally sang this song.

Although there are personal ties related to why the video won't be posted and within this blog post - it is still a fact that over the summer Tila Tequila was not empowering but insulting. Attacking a 20 year old girl and having her "Tila Army" attack her again and again. The hate mail and the e-mails received from "Miss Tila" were enough to make it unbearable to even go onto Twitter. So, no, the girl who coined the phrase "Piggy Raney" and posted lots of blog posts attacking other celebrities and hating on Rihanna (yes, Tila shows no remorse for what Rihanna went through and always insults her) is not someone who should be commended for female empowerment. The post has gotten a few comments, and it's unsure as to how many views the video has gotten.

Since I no longer go to Tila's personal "celebrity gossip blog" which I have been told is now just a TILA TILA TILA TILA TILA promotion blog I don't know what she has written in regards to the MTV endorsement, but I felt as though I was obligated to write this blog post after what I had to go through this summer with her. I have not watched the music video.

TMZ took Tila's blog off their blog roll after what she did; it was minutes after she posted a blog post bragging that she was on TMZ; unknowing that Zennie62 Media was also.

Oh, this brings back some not-so-fond memories, but that's what got me known on this blog. So this post is a bit of a throwback for me.

UCubed Creates ‘Marching to Madness’


UCubed Creates ‘Marching to Madness’

Washington, D.C., March 10, 2011 – Citing today’s state and local unemployment numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Ur Union of Unemployed (UCubed) has created a March Madness-like graphic to bring the grim statistics to life.

“We’re predicting a lot more ‘upsets’ in this tourney – between 25 to 29 million,” said UCubed Executive Director Rick Sloan. “Today’s local unemployment release serves as further proof that state governments and Congress must focus less on destroying good-paying jobs and more on putting jobless residents back to work.”

The “Marching to Madness” unemployment brackets are the latest installment of UCubed’s aggressive ad campaign on Facebook meant to draw more attention to the national jobs crisis. Users are being asked to fill out the unemployment brackets, ranking the city they think is suffering the most. On Friday, March 18, 2011, UCubed will fill in the brackets with actual rankings from the BLS.

“America’s jobless, along with the rest of the country, have for the past few weeks watched the assault Republican governments in Wisconsin, Ohio, Missouri and other states are afflicting on hard-working Americans,” said Sloan. “They can’t help but wonder: How does this put me back to work? It doesn’t. Not only will it ultimately send more hard-working folks to the unemployment line, it’s also part of the GOP’s larger strategy to completely ignore and distract from the more pressing issue affecting our country at this time – jobs.

“The jobless want to go back to work. And they want to go back today. The time to create a national jobs agenda is now.”

See UCubed's ad campaign on Facebook.

Ur Union of Unemployed, or UCubed, is a community service project of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) designed to assist the millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans, and to provide them with a structure that allows them to take advantage of their growing numbers. For more information, visit Ur Union of Unemployed.

Go to and hit the "LIKE"

Newsweek is Officially

Just received the newest issue of Newsweek in the mail and up on top of the header for Newsweek is a little link that says THEDAILYBEAST.COM - which has never been there before. It is now official. is no longer in existence and is the new site.

The bottom of EVERY SINGLE PAGE under the page number is a link to Every single page. And the Daily Beast Logo is everywhere.

And then there's a NewsBeast title. Pretty sure Zennie62 Media came up with that one first.

What has happened to Newsweek? The Daily Beast has taken over.

There will be a video to accompany this blog post posted as soon as it has finished loading on Youtube.

Keene State Adventure

There have been a lack of blog posts from blogger Nikky Raney - the reason for this is the lack of Internet while spending time on Spring Break, but there are many videos which are interesting and will be worth watching. The videos were taking with the FLIP CAM that Zennie sent for Zennie62 Media vlogs.

Enjoy seeing what this college girl was up to when she wasn't blogging. She was getting a good use and getting practice with the Flip cam!

Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin, what about Tina Fey?

Media Bistro reports Julianne Moore will be portraying Sarah Palin in HBO's adaptation of the book Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime. written by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin.

Tina Fey spent a lot of time on Saturday Night Live portraying Sarah Palin, and it is a bit more realistic that Fey looks like Palin more than Julianne Moore does - when thinking about who would play Sarah Palin in a movie Tina Fey would be the first to come to mind, but maybe this role calls for someone a bit more serious and it would be difficult to take Sarah Palin seriously in a movie if Tina Fey was the actress, but in all honesty: it's hard to take Sarah Palin seriously when she is Sarah Palin - so good luck trying to make her look better.

Media Bistro reports:

Anybody wish they picked Saturday Night Live veteran Tina Fey? Heilemann and Halperin interviewed more than 300 people to write Game Change (2010). The book had three parts: part one covered the Democratic primaries, part two looked at the Republican primaries, and part three examined the race between Barack Obama and John McCain.

Getty Images. Moore & Palin
The Washington Post has a bit of a light-hearted piece called Julianne Moore: Five things she won't do in her role as Sarah Palin
The five things include being on camera naked, having a sexual performance, overdosing on pills, having a British twin and uttering the phrase, "Do you like sex, Mr. Lebowski." All of the aforementioned are things that the actress has done previously in her roles from Boogie Nights, Magnolia, Short Cuts, As The World Turns and The Big Lebowski.

Time Magazine online also begins its article asking: "We wonder what Tina Fey thought when she found out she wasn't playing the part."

Its more in-depth article with Time's blog Tuned In writes:

Another burning question: is Moore's Alaska accent better than the Boston Southie one she put on for 30 Rock? Speaking of which, might she pick up some coaching from Palin-impersonation veteran and 30 Rock producer Tina Fey? And who will fill out the rest of the cast, whose lead characters will presumably (if it hews to the book) include John McCain, Barack Obama, Hillary (and presumably Bill) Clinton and John (and presumably Elizabeth) Edwards?

This is bound to be very interesting. Good luck to Julianne Moore - maybe it's good giving Fey a break. It will be interesting to see who will be cast as Barack Obama, John McCain, Hillary Clinton, etc.

99ers Implore HELP - bombard Boehner, Media Non-Stop NOW

NEW PLAN: 99ers must implore HELP and bombard Speaker Boehner & media non-stop now - continuing until such a time as the 99ers bill (HR589) passes the House.

With the shenanigans in Wisconsin last night, it is easy for Americans to feel their wants and needs are insignificant in the wake of the greedy, corrupt politicians - but never fear: WE MUST FIGHT ON & FIGHT HARDER.

We cannot survive on nothing and those who are fortunate enough to land a job are discovering that paying gig is not enough income to even sustain a life of poverty. [See: Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims at 20 Million Annual Pace ]

Even as Peter King (NY Congressman) wastes precious time and energy on his useless and controversial hearings on "radicalization" within the American Muslim community, the US unemployment exhaustees continue to suffer devastating poverty those in Washington choose to ignore.

However, according to the article by Crew of 42 yesterday, Lee + Scott Ask Boehner for Meeting on Unemployment Help:
Reps. Barbara Lee and Bobby Scott asked for a meeting with Speaker Boehner and reminded the new GOP Speaker and Majority Leader Cantor of unemployment in their states (OH, VA and MI) as they did so.

The bigger issue: Is it at all possible the House GOP will “find” $16 billion in the budget for unemployment assistance? Whether any deal comes (or doesn’t come) under a pay-for agreement or an emergency designation in irrelevant. The process of this sausage (legislation) actually becoming reality will either be brought into reality by complaining constituents back home or it won’t.

The bottom line is if House GOP members are returning to their districts and hearing the complaints of unemployed constituents on a regular basis that could tip the political scale. That is the only possible way House Republicans would make a way for a $16 billion budget allocation for unemployment assistance. A sure sign of altering political dynamics would be Speaker

Boehner or ML Cantor actually agreeing to a meeting on this issue. With the absence of political pressure and the White House completely absent from involvement on this issue (along with so many others…) a meeting would be surprising. “The unemployment rate does not discriminate…” Lee and Scott reminded Boehner. The unemployment rate in Ohio is 9.2%. In Michigan it is 10.6%. In Virginia it’s 6.4%.
The Huffington Post reported today: The Democrats in the House of Representatives who are pushing for additional jobless aid for the long-term unemployed say they are willing to compromise with Republican leadership on cutting spending from the budget to prevent the cost of new benefits from adding to the deficit.

In a Wednesday letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Reps. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) and Bobby Scott (D-Va.) wrote, "We want to work with you to identify how best to finance this legislation and ensure its swift passage."

Read the rest of this article House Dems Open To Compromise On 99ers Bill

The full letter to Boehner, Cantor and Rep. Dave Camp reads as follows:

Dear Speaker Boehner,
Majority Leader Cantor,
and Chairman Camp:

Once again we want to express our deep concern for the plight of millions of long-term unemployed workers across the country. Last week’s unemployment numbers reflect the harsh reality that still exists – while the economy is moving in the right direction, too many workers are still looking for jobs.

For every available job opening, there are 4.7 unemployed workers. And many of those workers have been unemployed for a year or longer. The unemployment rate does not discriminate – the challenges that our constituents face in our districts are just as difficult as the challenges that your constituents are facing in western Ohio, central Virginia and central Michigan. We all have a shared obligation to help our neediest and most vulnerable populations in their hour of greatest need.

The letter we sent you last month requested your assistance in extending emergency benefits for long-term unemployed workers who had exhausted their eligibility. In addition, we requested that these benefits be considered under the emergency designation of PAYGO spending rules, a provision that would exempt emergencies from these rules. We are disappointed that you disagreed with our belief that this is a true state of emergency for these workers.

As we outlined in our previous letter, we believe there is a strong moral and economic case to extend these emergency benefits. Economic experts believe that unemployment benefits provide a stimulative impact to our economy by helping to drive consumer spending. So not only is providing these benefits the right thing to do, but it is sound economic policy. To be clear, we maintain our position that this legislation deserves to exempt from PAYGO spending rules under the aforementioned emergency designation, but we are committed to exhausting every possible avenue to pass this bill. Adding an additional 14 weeks to the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Program is estimated to cost up to $16 billion.

We want to work with you to identify how best to finance this legislation and ensure its swift passage. We request a meeting with you as soon as possible to discuss alternative ways to address the costs associated with H.R. 589, The Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act. We hope that you share our urgent desire to move forward on passing this legislation.

There are dire consequences for millions of long-term unemployed workers who are fighting every day to make ends meet so they can support their families. It is time to get serious about taking care of our long-term unemployed workers who continue to suffer. We look forward to your response and are hopeful that we can meet with you in the near future to discuss the importance of this bill and our plan to pass it. Thank you for your time and consideration of this request.

— Reps. Barbara Lee + Bobby Scott

In my opinion, the Time is NOW for all unemployed Americans to put non stop pressure on the media, the House leadership and every one of our elected officials in our home district offices beginning TODAY and not letting up until we have Obama’s signature on a law that will provide badly needed and long overdue additional UI benefits for the millions of current 99ers and future 99ers alike.


@dailyrundown @chucktodd @SavannahGuthrie @maddow @wegoted @theedshow @edshow @alivelshi

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Lets go people it is time we let them know beyond a doubt that we will no longer be ignored! Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims a... Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims a...: "Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims at 20 Million Annual Pace News could not be worse for the average unemployed and employed A..."

Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims at 20 Million Annual Pace

Democracy Dead in Wisconsin as US Jobless Claims at 20 Million Annual Pace

News could not be worse for the average unemployed and employed American these days. Wages down, Unions being busted, rights being stripped along with dignity and the American dream dying a slow, miserable death.

The problem: rich, corrupt politicians - what else? The question is What are “We the People” willing to do about this unacceptable ongoing conspiracy of middle class genocide by the corporate elite and their politician puppets?

From the Journal Star this week, in an Op-Ed by Robert Reich titled - The real news on jobs

Most of the jobs we've gained pay less than the jobs we've lost.

An analysis from the National Employment Law Project shows that the new jobs created since February 2010 (about 1.26 million) pay, on average, significantly lower wages than the 8.4 million jobs lost between January 2008 and February 2010.

The biggest losses during the Great Recession were jobs paying $19.05 to $31.40 an hour. By contrast, the biggest gains over the past year have been jobs paying an average of $9.03 to $12.91 an hour.

In other words, the big news isn't the slow return of jobs. It's the drop in pay.

For several years now, conservative economists have blamed high unemployment on the purported fact that many Americans have priced themselves out of the global/high-tech jobs market. So if we want more jobs, they say, we'll need to take wage and benefit cuts.

And that's exactly what Americans have been doing.

Employers have been demanding wage and benefit concessions from their unionized workers and usually getting them. Detroit is creating auto jobs again -- but new hires are getting about half the pay that autoworkers were getting before. Airline workers are taking home 30 percent to 50 percent less than they did years ago. And so on.

Conservatives say it's not enough. That's why unions have to be busted --

Millions of non-union workers also have had to accept cuts in pay and benefits just to keep their jobs. Their health benefits have been slashed, their employer pension contributions dramatically cut and their wages reduced or frozen.

Millions of other private-sector workers have been fired and then re-hired as contract workers to do almost exactly what they were doing before, but now without any benefits or job security.

Last night when the “deaf to the People” Republicans in Wisconsin’s State Senate used a procedural ploy to cram through a bill sharply curtailing collective bargaining rights for government workers - they proved beyond any doubt that they only care about making Americans poorer and worse off then they already are. It is now an undeniable fact that the American PEOPLE MUST SAVE THEMSELVES. We can no longer avoid massive demonstrations in the streets if we hope to survive and topple what is now a completely corrupt and oppressive US Government.

It is unrcontionable that the wealthiest Americans keep paying off the politicians to look out ONLY for their own, myopic interests and the US Supreme Court has become as corrupt an enemy of “The People” as Washington DC.

The Wisconsin legislation was separated from the budget measure on Wednesday to break a three-week stalemate created when the Democratic senators all went to Illinois to deny the chamber the 20-member quorum required to take up bills that appropriate funds. The quorum requirement for other kinds of legislation is smaller.

Once the bill was separated, the Republicans pushed the measure through the Senate in less than half an hour by a vote of 18-1, without any debate on the floor or a single Democrat in the room - officially declaring the DEATH of DEMOCRACY in the great state of Wisconsin.

Just last week Ohio pulled their own disgusting end run around proper democratic protocol by approving an even tougher measure that restricts the collective bargaining rights of roughly 350,000 teachers, firefighters, police officers and other public employees, while Wisconsin's would affect about 175,000 workers and exempt police and firefighters. They did so by pushing that bill through 2 committees in one day in an unprecedented manner. When they did not have enough votes in each of two committees to pass the bill along, they replaced committee members immediately with other republicans they knew would support the “party UNION BUSTING line” - not once but TWICE on March the 3rd.

This is the sort of CRAP they pull in corrupt dictatorship type countries NOT what one expects from the American Democratic process. Henceforth this country is better described as the Republic(an) of American oppression rather than the United States in my opinion.

Adam Green of - last night put it this way:

"CODE RED: Wisconsin's Republican senators just voted to pass Gov. Walker's anti-worker bill -- without Democrats present. They are bending the rules in order to break Wisconsin unions, and they need to be punished for this undemocratic action. We plan on working all night to prepare new online ads and radio ads -- and we'll buy more TV ads in the districts of Republican senators up for recall."

I say RECALL the lot of them and shut down the entire state. Let’s show them how little will get done if NOBODY in the drone worker class bothers to come to work at all.


Wisconsin State Senate Republicans Took Hundreds Of Thousands In Government Farm Subsidies

MEANWHILE: New applications for state jobless benefits jumped by 26,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 397,000, the Labor Department reported this morning. Over the past four weeks claims have averaged 392,500, putting them near a three-year low.

That 3 year low still has the US rate of job loss at a pace of over 20 MILLION JOBS PER YEAR - do the math! [392,500 avg per week x 52 weeks = 20,384,000]

So even as unemployment remains at unacceptably outrageous levels, the few jobs that might be out there are paying below the poverty line in most areas. With the gas needed to get to work rapidly approaching $5 per gallon and the food required to sustain life costing us more everyday, how long until America is just another dual class society of the very rich vs the very poor? Come on folks there are so many more of us than them - let’s make it clear to the rich corrupt interests and their dutiful political pawns that we have had all we intend to take and FIGHT BACK NOW!

[The donation button below is for Paladinette. If you like what I write please donate so I can keep on fighting for the 99ers! Thank You!]


By Don Stokes-Senior Writer-Midwest Region-Football Reporters Online

Returning to the aforementioned Miami Dolphin dominance during the early part of the decade with 5 playoff seasons in a row and 3 straight Super Bowl appearances (1971- ’72 and ‘73). In the bright Oakland Coliseum sun the run finally concluded for the Fish. During the 1974 AFC Divisional round the two time defending champion Miami Dolphins lost a slugfest to the Oakland Raiders 28-26. When the Raiders QB Kenny Stabler fluttered an 8 yard pass to RB Clarence Davis in the end zone through the Miami “Sea of hands” with just 24 seconds remaining for the winning score, most football experts at the time stated the 1974 AFC Title game was just completed. The powerful Raiders had beaten the back to back Super Bowl Champions Dolphins surely they would easily beat their next opponent at home and go on to Super Bowl IX and become the NFL’s newest dynasty. Who was the “Silver and Black” opponent in that ‘74 AFC Championship game? The young and hungry Steelers of Pittsburgh, PA.
Pittsburgh did do one thing nearly better than any other team during that 1974 season. Their defense was proclaimed “The Steel Curtain” and played great football all season long. But they had a noticeable Achilles heel. For all of the teams who had made the NFL playoffs in 1974 everyone’s perceived strength was considered Pittsburgh’s biggest weakness. That was of course being the Quarterback position. The Steelers QB was in then his 5th year and still could not play with a level of consistency. Their now starting QB had actually lost his job to a 2nd year player early during that same season. Looking back if any one player had a right to have the preverbal “chip” on his shoulder during that time period it should be the Steelers Terry Bradshaw. Although because of his inconsistency at the position most of ills on the field was of his own accord. In telling Bradshaw’s account one must also mention another QB who just may have helped pushed Bradshaw to finally play up to his potential. The casual NFL fan born after 1970 may not recall the colorful name of one Jefferson Street Joe Gilliam, a lanky, rail thin man of color with a powerful arm. The tale of this duel began with Bradshaw joining an up and coming Steelers team in 1970.
Despite being the 1st pick of that year’s NFL draft the rocket armed University of Louisiana blond bomber Terry Bradshaw struggled the first 4 seasons of his career. Bradshaw still led Pittsburgh to 2 straight playoff appearances in 1972 and 1973 but his play at quarterback was continually erratic. By 1974 the Steelers knew were ready to seriously contend for an NFL Championship. But their 5 year quarterback unfortunately Bradshaw still was not. During the ’74 pre-season Steeler Head Coach Chuck Noll had enough of his gifted but frustrating passer. He also knew third year pro Joe Gilliam had the physical skills to compete against Bradshaw while the other vet on the roster (QB Terry Hanratty) did not. Joe beat out Bradshaw and won the starting job. Gilliam played well early. Beginning with the 1974 season opener, a 30-0 win against the Colts (257 yards) then a week 2 35-35 tie against the Broncos (348 yards) Joe Gilliam was the talk of the National Football League. But Gilliam’s success was short lived. An 8 for 31 passing performance for 106 yards during a week 3 (17-0) loss against the Raiders began the slide. Although the Steelers rebounded with wins against Houston, Kansas City and Cleveland Joe’s play was not impressive. Other factors (to be mentioned later in this piece) may have contributed to Joe Gilliam regression but he began to spiral out of control.
Coach Noll, who some later argued did not show the same patience with Jefferson Street Joe (4-1-1 in his starts)after 6 games as he did with the 4 seasons of unpredictable play with Bradshaw soon pulled the plug on the Joe Gilliam experiment. Terry was returned as the starter for the remainder of the season first beating the Raiders in the AFC Title game, then leading Pittsburgh to their 1st Super Bowl victory against Minnesota 16-6. Regarding the Jefferson Street Joe Gilliam story? It’s a sad one with a “What might have been” ending. Substance abuse dogged his brief career in Pittsburgh. After Gilliam received his 2nd Super Bowl ring Coach Noll, growing weary of his personal issues released him in 1975. His NFL career was over. With Gilliam athletic abilities and raw talent maybe Noll used him to push Terry to become a better quarterback in 1974.
By the 1975 season Terry Bradshaw had become a Pro bowl QB. After back to back championship seasons in 1974-’75 and 1978-’79 the Steelers impressive run had ended by 1980. The final total: 4 Super Bowls wins in 6 years. Terry Bradshaw by that time had become the 2 time Super Bowl MVP Hall Famer bound QB finishing his career at a still high level. Bradshaw most surely would have played a few more seasons if not for an elbow injury which hastened his retirement. Bradshaw played in but one game the entire 1983 season, the final one of the year. Terry started and threw the final two touchdown passes of his career during the Steelers 34-7 win against the Jets. A pop in his elbow after a 2nd quarter TD pass signaled the end of his playing career. With Bradshaw’s elbow being a season long problem it gave an opportunity for his back up 5th year pro Youngstown State’s Cliff Stoudt to show his skills. Stoudt played well enough to win 9 games and lead Pittsburgh to the AFC Central crown.
Terry Bradshaw’s 1978 NFL MVP (top) last winning Super Bowl season and Cliff Stoudt’s (bottom) 1983 best NFL season
Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
16 368 207 56.3 2915 28 20 84.7
16 381 197 51.7 2553 12 21 60.6

As stated before Stoudt led the Steelers to a playoff berth in 1983 were they were soundly beaten by the eventual Super Bowl Champion LA Raiders in the AFC Divisional round 38-10. With both QB’s interceptions were a problem but in the case of Terry Bradshaw there was much more productivity than Stoudt via the TD passes. With any team success (especially in Steel Town) there is a harsh reality from fans when you follow a successful winner at the hot spot of QB, much is expected. In the case of Cliff Stoudt, after a 9-2 start struggled towards the end of the season losing 3 straight games. To right the ship a tender elbowed Bradshaw volunteered to play the regular season finale at Shea Stadium against the Jets. Sometimes great results by both the media and fans are expected and expected quickly. And, also sometimes for some players the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. Or in the case of Cliff Stoudt the green was money from another league: The United States Football League. The USFL Birmingham Stallions signed Stoudt to play for them in 1984. For 2 seasons he played quite well for Birmingham throwing for 60 TD passes. But the league itself was unstable. Unfortunately the USFL took the NFL on in court. And congrats to them, they won their lawsuit. What was the USFL winning judgment? One single lonely buck. The new league was done and for the most part so was Stoudt’s career. After stops with the Cardinals and Dolphins it ended in Dallas on their practice squad in 1991.
As the mighty Steeler dynasty was ending by 1980, a new one began in the City by the Bay in San Francisco, CA by 1981. For many seasons before the San Francisco 49ers were called many different things. They were called also rans, bridesmaids all the like. But they were never crowned an NFL champion until the arrival of Bill Walsh. In the beginning no one would have believed this because the 49ers had fallen upon hard times. Everyone knows the story of Walsh coming from Paul Brown’s Cincinnati’s via Don Coryall’s Chargers and the 2-14 record during his 1st season as 49ers head coach in 1979. During that uneventful ’79 season new head coach Walsh was blessed with not just 1 but 2 young QB studs. The incumbent was the 2nd year starter Steve DeBerg, who started 15 of the 16 games in ’79 and threw for over 3600 yards and led the NFL in pass completions. The other quarterback was a rookie who started just one game that season, a week 14 loss against the NFC Champion Los Angeles Rams: A 3rd round pick from the University of Notre Dame, Joe Montana. By the 1980 NFL season both Steve DeBerg (9 starts) and Joe Montana (7 starts) were splitting time at QB with each having their ups and downs. Despite winning but 2 games as a starter in ’80 but still leading the NFL in completion percentage with 64.5% the decision made to keep Montana over DeBerg. After the 1980 season the 49ers traded Steve DeBerg (to the Denver Broncos….. remember DeBerg’s name but that’s another story for later) before the start of the 1981 season and named Joe Montana the full time starter at quarterback.
Some possible reasons: Although not blessed with great foot speed or a rocket throwing arm, what Montana did bring to the table was an ability to find the open man and quick feet to avoid the pressure of a pass rush. Something the somewhat stationary Steve De Berg did not have. Another possible reason was the West Coast offense system that Walsh implemented which calls for a more mobile and accurate type of passer. A bigger reason may have been Montana’s ability to coolly bring his team back from seemly insurmountable odds. One of the two games Montana won that 1980 season was a 38-35 win against the Saints with the 49ers trailing 35-7 at the half that may have helped open Walsh’s eyes about Montana’s leadership skills for his very young team. By 1981 the San Francisco 49ers rise to the top was the surprise of the National Football League with a 13-3 mark. Leading the young 49ers into the NFC Playoffs, Montana led San Francisco over the Giants in the 1st round. Now “Americas Team” the battle tested Dallas Cowboys awaited. With a historic Dwight Clark pass from Montana (“The Catch”) now in NFL lore the San Francisco 49ers moved on to Super Bowl XVI. Joe Montana was voted Super Bowl MVP as the 49ers beat Cincinnati 26-2I. A Super Bowl type layover hit the 49ers in 1982 crashing with a 3-6 strike shortened record.
But by 1984 the 49ers again were back on top of the football world by beating the Dan Marino led Dolphins in Super Bowl XIX 38-16. However by the ’86 campaign Joe Montana, after numerous injuries was feeling the effects of years of lingering back pain and his continued excellent play was at that point in question. With that in mind the 49ers made a steal of a deal that would allow them continued success far into the next decade. The victim of the theft: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs drafted their seemly new franchise QB with their 1st pick of the 1987 NFL draft: The University of Miami’s Vinnie Testaverde. Already on the Buccaneers roster at the end of the 1986 season was veteran QB Steve DeBerg (remember him?) and the extremely mobile but still raw University of Brigham Young QB Steve Young. Coach Walsh was so impressed with the athletically gifted Young he traded an 2nd and a 4th rounder for the USFL castoff. With the arrival of Steve Young by 1987 the 49ers had the QB necessary to remain a football dynasty for many more years to come. But Joe Montana by all means wasn’t finished just yet. Montana and the 49ers returned to the Super Bowl winning in back to back seasons in 1988 and 1989. By 1994 San Francisco with Steve Young finally entrenched under center as the starter won Super Bowl XXIX against the San Diego Chargers 49-26.

Here are the stats for Joe Montana’s (top) 1989 last Super Bowl winning NFL season and Steve Young’s (bottom) 1994 NFL Super Bowl winning season

Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
13 386 271 70.2 3521 26 8 112.4
16 461 324 70.3 3969 35 10 112.8

Looking at both Hall of Famers stats in those Super Bowl winning seasons their numbers are eerily similar in productivity. Montana played just 13 games in 1989 and still averaged 270 passing yards per game. Young (who started slow because of a thumb injury) averaged 248 yards passing in 16 games in 1994. Their completion % is but .1 percentage point difference. And their passing rating is just .4 points apart. And both were voted the NFL MVP in their respective seasons. But as far as their careers were concerned they ended in very different ways. For Joe Montana a pre-season elbow tendon injury before the 1991 season caused him to miss all of 1991 and all but one game of the 1992 season. With Young’s growth and success on the field this effectively ended Joe’s time as a San Francisco 49er starting QB. Sensing the 49ers split in the locker room Joe requested a trade and found new life as a Kansas City Chief in 1993. Along with another reclamation project RB Marcus Allen, Montana led the surprising Chiefs to an AFC Title game appearance and for him another Pro Bowl. In 1994 the 38 year old Montana again led the Chiefs to another playoff berth. But just as in his very 1st NFL start Joe Montana’s NFL career ended with a loss this time in an AFC Wildcard game against the Dolphins 27-17.
While Montana was traded from Candlestick to Arrowhead in the spring of 1993 Steve Young’s career took off. Only the Dallas Cowboys ended their seasons in both the 1992 and 1993 NFC Championship games. By 1994 as Joe’s career was winding down, Steve Young’s was on the rise. He finally overcame the Cowboys for the NFC Title. A Super Bowl record 6 TD passes by the game’s MVP Young soon followed. He like his QB rival Joe Montana had now become both a 49er and NFL icon. The following years for Steve Young were successful statistically for him as he led the NFL in passing in 1996 and 1997. But not for the 49ers team in general, for they have not returned a Super Bowl since the 1994 season. With Young the injuries began to mount up as the years went by. Being an athletic running type of passer Young suffered numerous concussions through out his career. The final career ender for Steve occurred on a Monday Night Football game week 3 encounter against the Cardinals in 1999. Young was forced to retire with post-concussion syndrome. Just like Montana before him, the doors of Canton opened wide for Steve Young making the San Francisco 49ers one of the few teams in NFL history to have two Super Bowl winning QB’s in the Pro Football’s Hall Of Fame.

Coming soon Part 3: Troy Aikman, Aaron Rodgers and ……… The happy sack play in the desert.

The lockout and the "little people" it will affect

By Rafael Garcia
Sr. Contributing Writer-Southeast Region-Football Reporters Online
March 10th 2011

In a perfect world many things would change. War would not exist and and we would live in peace. Politicians would always tell the truth and actually look out for the people they are supposed to serve. The national debt would be no more and everyone would work. Unfortunately, we do not live in that world so we live with the status quo and deal with it. We look for other things to occupy our time. A way to deal with everyday life like the movies and restaurants. We go on vacations and take the kids to Disney World if we can. Some of us have bad habits and some have good ones. On Sundays many of us go to church to worship and then go eat lunch. A whole bunch of us have another habit that creates a fever. It makes your blood boil. It has been known to cause friction between families.

The NFL on Sunday is a ritual that no fan wants to give up. First of all, they spend way too much money to see the game and buy the merchandise. In a perfect football world there would be football all the time. Owners would never cry about more money and they would stop trying to outdo each other. No need for the best stadium equipped with everything except a spaceship. They wouldn't be so filled with the need for money and ask the players to consider an 18 game schedule. Players would honor their contracts until it expires instead of having one good year and demanding the moon. They would play hard every play and every Sunday instead of waiting until their contract year to showcase their skills. Again, we do not live in that perfect football world so we deal with what we get. A bunch of rich owners that want more games to make more money. They will not open their books, which is their right, for the players to see. For most of us the most important thing we want to know is when there will be football again.

One the biggest issues not talked about enough is the little people that will be affected by a lockout. I have spent time at many venues and LP Field has been my stomping grounds the last several years. I have talked to the concession stand workers from time to time. Hey, I get hungry and thirsty for a good old hot dog and a coke like anyone else. I have gotten to know some of the cleanup crew and lent them a hand at times if I was passing by and they needed the help. Then you have the event staff that stands in the aisles checking your tickets. They provide extra security and customer service for the fans. They brave the cold and rain and all other elements of the game. These people do all of this for a paycheck that feeds their families. These paychecks pay the bills a full-time job cannot pay. This is the second job for those that have to work another job. It is these types of little people that could be crushed by a lockout. They do not have a Plan B fast enough to make it by. They cannot tell their kids that the NFL was worried about their little paycheck. That they were only worried about how to get a bigger piece of the pie for themselves. Families will have to find emergency means to get over this. They will ask for a long time to come, why?

Then there is the NFL player that is not making a million dollars a year. Those that have yet to get, or have never gotten the big contract. Statistics show that a big percentage of players do not make the millions of dollars superstars get. What about the bunch of rookies and undrafted free agents that made bottom of the barrel last year? They made purchases like homes, cars and other things based on the salary they thought they would have every week. Now they have to have a Plan B so they can continue to pay for these things and needs.Their families will be affected as well and nobody comes out the winner.

No matter what happens the NFL is treading dangerous waters. Remember what happened to baseball way back when we lost part of the season and the World Series. Imagine Sunday with no football to watch or even worse, no Super Bowl in February. They extended talks for one week like that will make a difference. We can only hope that the heads in charge remember that they do not want to become the first sport the fans make an example out of. That would not be wise or profitable for anyone of the owners making demands. Each side has made their case and no one wants to budge. All we can hope is that sometime sooner than later some form of agreement will be reached. All the fans and the rest of the football world deserve better than this. They deserve football every Sunday and the fight to the finish we know as the NFL.

Imagine a world where fans buy no tickets or merchandise. Imagine a world that has been deprived of football and fans do not show up when it comes back. Imagine a stadium full of players and coaches, but no fans. Imagine college games being played on Sunday afternoon with a prime-time SEC game on top. How about maybe the four letter network get a deal to put on, say ah, Alabama vs. Auburn for a Monday Night Football special? Now imagine a world that has a playoff system instead of the BleepCS? Imagine that folks. I think not, do you?


By Don Stokes Senior Writer-Midwest Region- Football Reporters Online
As I watched the end of Super Bowl XLV come to a conclusion as the Green Bay Packers beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 31-25 in the “gigantic” football palace that Jerry Jones built, I wondered out loud as the Packers QB Aaron Rodgers took the final knee to run out the clock the magnitude of that moment must be for him. As the Cowboys Stadium turf was engulfed with players, press, NFL bigwigs and fans my lovely wife reminded me of the very first time we saw the newest SB MVP Aaron Rodgers. It was on a Saturday morning NFL draft day in 2005 at Radio City Music Hall.
I recalled watching him on television sitting gleefully at a table with his family and well wishers with all of the other expected early draft picks of that season nearby. Rodgers was expected to be an early 1st round draft pick.

As the names QB Alex Smith, RB Ronnie Brown, CB Antrelle Rolle and others were continually called to the stage but surprisingly not his he still sat and the time ticked on. Minutes turned into hours watching the announcers continued surprise of a quarterback of Aaron Rodgers quality remained available. The smile that was broad and generous on Aaron’s face at the start of the afternoon had turned into puzzlement and disbelief as the day went by. It was merciful when both he and his group moved away from their front row accommodations and also away from the glare of the television cameras. Many Hours later just one word came from both my wife and me simultaneously when the Green Bay Packers made Aaron Rodgers their 1st round choice (the 24th player chosen). FINALLY!
Fast forward 5+ years and of course the rest is history. Now Aaron Rodgers can stand alongside other Packer quarterback legends like Brett Favre and Bart Starr as a Super Bowl winning QB. A thought came to me: Just how really difficult is it to replace a legend? I did a little research (yes I do that on occasion) and I came up with these numbers.
But first let’s use the following criteria:
Number one: Only Super Bowl winning quarterbacks from 1967-2011 (players from the Super Bowl era)

Number two: The Super Bowl winning QB must be a current Pro Football Hall of Famer (hence the word legend). There were many QB’s who played in the NFL during the Super Bowl era who put up great numbers (Tarkenton, Fouts, Marino, Moon, etc.) who didn’t win a Super Bowl. This discussion is not about them.

Number three: Meaning the following Super Bowl winning QB’s DO NOT count in this equation…… All due respect to Chicago Bears QB Jim McMahon (1985) NY Giants QB Phil Simms and Jeff Hostetler (1986 and 1990) Washington Redskins QB’s Joe Theismann, Doug Williams and Mark Rypien (1982, 1987 and 1991) Oakland Raiders/ Los Angeles Raiders QB’s Ken Stabler and Jim Plunkett (1976, 1980 and 1983) St. Louis Rams QB Kurt Warner (1999) Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Brad Johnson (2002) and Baltimore Ravens QB Trent Dilfer (2000). While some of these QB’s may wind up in Canton one day (see Warner and Stabler) at the moment they are not.

Number four: for the most famous number 4 Brett Favre……He’ll be a slam dunk Hall of Famer in five years but with his track record he might return in 2011. I will not place his numbers against Rodgers. The question should be when do we start the countdown to Canton?

Number five: No active Super Bowl winning QB is allowed on this list for obvious reasons. These 5 are still playing so they haven’t been replaced just yet. No (Peyton or Eli) brothers Manning, No Big Ben Roethlisberger, No Cool Drew Brees and no Mr. GQ himself Tom Brady.

The stats used are from the Super Bowl winning quarterbacks’ last SB win (or in the case of Namath and Unitas, their only SB win) and his replacements best NFL season. The numbers (in most cases) also will show just how difficult it is to replace a Super Bowl winning QB. We’ll start with four University of Alabama Quarterbacks. Let’s begin with the winner of the first two Super Bowls: The Packers QB Bart Starr and his replacement also from the Crimson Tide, Scott Hunter.
Starr final Super Bowl II season in 1967 (top) compared to Scott Hunter’s NFL 1972 season (bottom).
Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
14 210 115 54.8 1823 9 17 64.4
14 199 86 43.2 1252 6 9 55.5

Although Starr 1967 numbers was considered an off-season for him (8-3-1 in his starts) the Pack still won SB II against Oakland 32-14 and he was voted the SB II MVP. As for Scott Hunter who replaced Starr during Starr’s last season (1971) his 1972 season even by 1970’s standards was abysmal. Fortunately the Packers kept Starr as his QB coach and along with a strong running game (John Brockington and McArthur Lane ran for over 1,800 yards between the two) Green Bay won the NFC Central with a 10-4 record. In the preceding seasons Scott Hunter did not progress well as an NFL QB and was playing for the Buffalo Bills by 1974. Not a great choice to replace the legendary Bart Starr.

Let’s now look at the QB from the swinging ‘60’s with the white shoes and the ‘guarantee win’. Super Bowl III MVP Jet Joe Namath compared to his replacement at the helm 1st round pick Richard Todd in 1976.

Joe Namath 1968 Super Bowl III season (top) compared to Richard Todd 1981 NFL season (bottom)

Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
14 380 187 49.2 3147 15 17 72.1
16 497 279 56.1 3231 25 13 81.8

Namath’s game calling changed to a more conservative running game approach from previous seasons which help lower his INT’s total from 28 in 1967 to 17 in 1968. The forecoming 70’s were rough on both the Jets and Broadway Joe indeed. Numerous injuries ravaged Namath during the 1970, ’71 and ’73 seasons (he played but 15 out of 42 games during that period). With their 1st pick the Jets drafted Alabama’s Richard Todd in 1976 and he split time with Joe during Namath’s final Jet season. While Broadway Joe thrived under the hot spotlight of the New York Press during his playing days, Richard Todd wilted under the same heat. He never seemed comfortable with the task of following a sports icon the likes of Joe Willie in the Big Apple.

Todd, who took the Jets to back to back playoffs seasons (’81 and ’82) for the 1st time since 1968-‘69 had the all the physical skills to become a solid everyday QB. His best playoff finish was in the strike shortened season of 1982 when he led the Jets to an AFC Title game appearance. After a disappointing 7-9 record with 26 interceptions Richard Todd was traded to the New Orleans Saints after the 1983 season. After 6 rollercoaster seasons from Todd the separation from the Jets was much needed and was mutual for both parties involved.

In Kansas City, the Chiefs had their eventual replacement for their Hall of famer former Purdue QB Len Dawson on their roster for over 8 seasons before the job was totally his. Mike Livingston was drafted in the 2nd round from SMU in 1968 but did not truly have the QB job until Dawson finally retired after the 1975 season.

Here are the numbers for SB IV MVP Len Dawson 1969 (top) final Super Bowl appearance and Mike Livingston’s 1976 NFL season (bottom)

Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
9 166 87 59.0 1323 9 13 69.9
14 338 191 55.7 2682 12 13 77.6

The ’69 season wasn’t a great one statistically for Len Dawson. He missed 5 full games and parts of others with a knee injury. With the added burden of a gambling investigation falsely placed upon him before the game Dawson led the Kansas City attack to a convincing Super Bowl IV victory with crisp pinpoint passing. Livingston in his 2nd year at that point actually was 6-0 during the 1969 season and was named to the AFL All-Star game (along with Dawson).

Numerous injuries nagged Len Dawson for the later part of his career making Mike Livingston a very important insurance policy at QB for the Chiefs in the 1970’s. By 1976 the great Chiefs teams of the 1960’s was a distant memory although with 2682 passing yards Mike Livingston finished 6th in the NFL that season. Both he and the Chiefs never achieved championship success again. Kansas City would not return to the NFL playoffs until 1986, seven seasons after Livingston retired at age 34.

There are times when following a legend is nearly just impossible. Such was the case when you are the 1972 Baltimore Colts and two seasons removed from your Super Bowl V 16-13 victory against the Dallas Cowboys. Your management has the 39 year old John Unitas one of the all time greats at QB benched. Surely you realize this would be a tough sell replacing the pride of Baltimore so you better have a solid choice for your new QB. The Colts chose Marty Domres; a bright articulate young man from an Ivy league school (Columbia). But Domres really never had a chance.

The numbers for John Unitas SB V 1970 season (top) and Marty Domres 1972 NFL season (bottom)

Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
14 321 166 51.7 2213 14 18 65.1
12 222 115 51.8 1392 11 6 76.6

During this first year of the NFL-AFL merger the former Louisville Cardinal QB Unitas had somewhat erratic season throwing the ball. Fortunately the Colts had a strong defense in 1970 just enough to carry them to Super Bowl V. Unitas was injured in the second quarter of that game giving veteran Earl Morrall a chance to redeem himself. Morrall took over and led them to victory.
Just going by the numbers Marty Domres had a nice 1972 season but the Colt team finished 5-9. Baltimore soon traded Unitas to the San Diego Chargers before the 1973 season, where he retired at the end of the year. But unfortunately for Marty the Colts also drafted a QB (LSU’s Bert Jones) with their 1st pick in the 1973 NFL Draft. It was apparent the younger Jones had better natural skills (stronger arm and scrambling ability) than Domres and in time he led the Colts to AFC Eastern Division crowns in 1975, ’76 and 1977. As for Marty Domres? He finished his career as a Jet backup QB in 1977.

An observer from the sidelines during Super Bowl V Dallas Cowboys loss to the Colts, backup QB Roger Staubach would get his opportunity the following season and lead the Cowboys to their 1st Super Bowl title in 1971. Veteran holdover QB Craig Morton started the 1971 campaign under center but after 5 games the Cowboys offense stalled. Enter Roger Staubach former Naval Academy and Heisman trophy winner, who at one point during the 1971 season won 9 games in a row. The MVP of SB VI, Staubach would soon grow to become “Captain Comeback” pulling victory from the jaws of defeat numerous times. During Roger Staubach’s eight seasons as a starter the Cowboys played in 4 different Super Bowls. His backup and replacement ASU QB Danny White had been a Cowboy since 1976 (he was the regular punter) and was ready to take over the quarterback reins when the last of numerous concussions ended Roger “the Dodger’s” playing career after the 1979 season.

Here is Roger Staubach SB XII 1977 season (top) and Danny White 1981 NFL season (bottom)
Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
14 361 210 58.2 2620 18 9 87.0
16 391 223 57.0 3098 22 13 87.5

If you look at Staubach 1977 and White’s 1981 passer ratings they’re eerily similar. Both Dallas QB’s had RB Tony Dorsett either in his 1st season (1007 yards 4.8 avg in 1977) and at his peak (1648 yards 4.8 avg in 1981). Both had strong defenses and the same head coach with the fedora (Tom Landry). Dallas gave up 15.8 points a game in ’77 ranking 8th, 17.3 in 1981 ranking 7th. So why didn’t the 1981 team win the prize as did the 1977 squad accomplished? Two words: The “Catch”. A high pass into the end zone corner from a young former Notre Dame QB named Montana to a nondescript wide out named Dwight Clark with: 24 on the clock began the 49er dynasty and ended the best chance for a Danny White led team to win a Super Bowl title.

For three straight seasons Danny White (1980,’81 and ’82) led the Cowboys to the NFC Title game. And each time they were defeated. White, a good QB who was never forgiven for following Staubach in big D was prone to turnovers. He caught a bad break as the core group on both the offense and defense side of the ball began to age. He happened to play with the Cowboys towards the end of that teams’ talent run. Towards the end of Danny White’s in career in 1988 the Cowboys had become the laughing stock of the NFC East.

Before the exploits of a certain number #13 becoming the face of the franchise in Miami there was another great quarterback in South Florida than preceded his arrival who wore number#12: Bob Griese. From the very beginning Griese was the choice at quarterback for the Miami Dolphins in their early years. An AFL All-star in his very first season (1967) Griese from Purdue University was a cerebral signal caller who took the majority of snaps during his playing career. Other than injury (playing but 6 games because of a broken leg during the undefeated season of 1972) Griese was a durable quarterback who remarkably made the 1973 Pro Bowl despite averaging only 104 yards a game passing that season. In Miami’s Super Bowl VIII victory against Minnesota that year Bob Griese threw but 7 passes the entire game.

In 1980 Miami drafted QB David Woodley from LSU to replace the aging 35 year old Griese. As a rookie Woodley started 11 and played in 13 games that year easing the retirement of Griese (because of a shoulder injury) in 1980.

Here are the stats for Bob Griese 1973 SBVIII season (top) and David Woodley’s 1981 NFL season (bottom)

Games Att Comp Pct% Yards TD INT Rating
13 218 116 53.2 1422 17 8 84.3
15 366 191 52.2 2470 12 13 69.8

During Griese’s time the Dolphins relied more on their so called “no name” defense and the running of backs Csonka, Morris and Kiick to accomplish their place in NFL lore. A perfect season (17-0) preceded the 12-2 1973 Super bowl champion club with Griese at the helm. During the latter half of Bob’s career he threw much more passes than the Super Bowl clubs. Miami still remained competitive but never returned to the Super Bowl again during his playing career.

Regarding the quarterback play of David Woodley? As many students of the game know a mobile QB with a strong arm doesn’t always equate success. Such was the case with David Woodley. His career started well (he was voted the Dolphins MVP in his rookie 1980 campaign) but as a QB he never got better. The Dolphins had developed the league’s strongest defense by 1981 (11-5 winning the AFC East) in 1982 Miami’s “Killer B’s” defense took them to Super Bowl XVII but was hampered by Woodley’s inconsistent play at QB which would dog him his entire NFL career. By 1983 Don Shula had grown tired of Woodley’s up and down play and made rookie QB Dan Marino his choice as the starter. Woodley was shipped to Pittsburgh to compete for the starting quarterback job in 1984(Terry Bradshaw retired after the 1983 season). A change of scenery didn’t change Woodley’s play. David Woodley retired in 1986 while in the same year Dan Marino threw 44 touchdown passes. One could say Woodley was the bridge between the two Miami Hall of Fame players.

Next week part 2: Terry Bradshaw, Joe Montana, Steve Young, John Elway and……. Cliff Stout?

Wisconsin Republicans Move State Toward Fascism

Today, Wisconsin GOP Senators moved to pass an anti-union bill without a single Democrat present. The move took observers by surprise. GOP Senators side-stepped the need for a quorum to pass the controversial legislation, thus rendering powerless Democrats who left the state capital and traveled outside state lines to avoid a vote that would harm the teachers unions. The GOP and Governor Scott Walker effectively altered the State of Wisconsin's legislative structure toward one-party rule, and in the process moved it toward Fascism.


The definition of Fascism is:

1.: a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition
2.: a tendency toward or actual exercise of strong autocratic or dictatorial control.

Consider that Wisconsin's government has become, for all practical purposes, a police state, where Democratic Rep. Nick Milroy was tackled by police just for trying to enter the Wisconsin Capital to retrieve clothes from his office. Also Democrats who refused to vote were subject to illegal threat of arrest last week. These are examples of a use of police power to ultimately repress opposition. There's nothing democratic about what Governor Walker and the Wisconsin GOP have done, and everything, again, Fascist about it.

Fascism is a nasty term, indeed, but when the actions of the Wisconsin GOP are looked at from a cold, analytical perspective that embraces history, the use of the word to describe what's happening in Wisconsin becomes inescapable.

Moreover, if one looks at the more detailed Wikipedia definition of Fascism, the comparisons with the actions of the Wisconsin GOP are unmistakeable. In part:

Fascism is a radical, authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists seek to organize a nation according to corporatist perspectives, values, and systems, including the political system and the economy. Fascism was originally founded by Italian national syndicalists in World War I who combined left-wing and right-wing political views, but it gravitated to the right in the early 1920s. Scholars generally consider fascism to be on the far right. Confusion over whether fascism is of the left or right is due to the inability to fit the economic policies into a clear-cut category, because while fascism is considered on the right politically, fascist economic controls were left-wing, though ended up benefiting social groups considered to be supportive of right-wing parties.
Fascists believe that a nation is an organic community that requires strong leadership, singular collective identity, and the will and ability to commit violence and wage war in order to keep the nation strong. They claim that culture is created by the collective national society and its state, that cultural ideas are what give individuals identity, and thus they reject individualism. Viewing the nation as an integrated collective community, they see pluralism as a dysfunctional aspect of society, and justify a totalitarian state as a means to represent the nation in its entirety.

Pluralism embraces a diversity of views and "stands in opposition to one single approach." Governor Walker doesn't want compromise, and it's clear he's not interested in balancing the budget, or plain and simple union-busting, but far beyond that, to something that looks like dictatorial control.

Governor Walker points to how Indiana Republican Governor Mitch Daniels was able to eliminate collective bargaining in his state, but what Scott either doesn't know, or leaves out of his rants, is that Daniels was able to do so by executive order, and because a Democratic predecessor was able to do so "many years before" as he explained to Fox News in February of this year.

Governor Walker can't rule by the stroke of a pen, so he has to resort to arresting, then locking out, the opposition party and having his GOP pass the largely unwanted legislation.

The idea of seeking compromise is out of the window.

So, it seems, could be Governor Walkers term, if the recall effort reaches it's logical objective.

That is, unless Walker figures out a way to enlist the police to arrest recall election advocates, too. Don't put it past him.

Stay tuned and follow me on Twitter here.