Tag:Mike Coulter
Posted on: June 18, 2008 7:29 pm

Blog Cabin: Does anybody believe Chad Johnson?

In the news...

So, Chad Johnson had surgery today to clean out an ankle that was supposedly bothering him at the Bengals mandatory workouts. Oh, and he also has a sore back.


Sure, Chad, we believe you. There’s definitely no way that you and your agent, Drew Rosenhaus, could have cooked this one up as a way to punish the Bengals for not trading you.

Just like there’s no way that the general public would question the statements of someone who has been a loud-mouth, malcontent for most of his career.

Sarcasm aside, I think we all know that this is a power move on Chad’s part. He says he’ll be back to start the season, but we all expect him to try to sit until he’s traded.

I wouldn’t expect Cincinnati to play ball, though. The team has already said that it won’t trade Chad because it can’t get equal value.

Good for the Bengals, too. I hope they fine him, and if that doesn’t work, I hope they sit him and let him rot. Whatever they do, they can’t, under any circumstances, trade him to get him out of the way. These guys have to learn that they can’t bully management... even if slimy Mr. Rosenhaus is doing their bidding.

Cincinnati, maybe more than any other team in this situation, needs to hold firm. They’ve already cut ties with a few troubled players, and they are well on their way to reigning in the three-ring circus. To finish the task, they have got to get this one right.

Anyway, it might even be better for the team if he doesn’t play. Carson Palmer is sick of him. T.J. Houshmandzadeh seems to have had his fill of “Ocho-Cinco”. Plus, at this point, who’s to say he even gives it an honest effort?

Eventually, though, he’ll realize that he’s wasting games and money in the prime of his career. If he has any brain beneath that short Mohawk, he’ll also realize that he’s hurting his stock for the future.

Sure, someone will sign him after this ordeal (Dallas), but it won’t be as big of a contract as it would have been, especially since he’s coming off somewhat of a down year. How many teams nowadays can afford to take a chance on a guy like Chad Johnson?

Some, but not that many.

And by the way... 85 is “ochenta y cinco”. Idiot.

From the Blogosphere...

Banned Poster learned a lot of things during this year's NBA finals, but the most important was that Laker fans are "classless". Please, can we start using some synonyms for that word. I know they use it on television, but there are actually about 20 other words that mean exactly the same thing. Microsoft Word has a thesaurus. Besides that, it is a great blog, and is up to par with the rest of BP's writings.

Stepping outside the world of sports, redoverred is sending his prayers to the Americans dealing with the floods of the Midwest. Stop in and share a thought.

The AL Central is always a dog fight. In his latest blog, tigertowner68 breaks down the middle of the pack, as the Tigers and Indians move in opposite directions.
Posted on: June 13, 2008 7:22 pm
Edited on: June 13, 2008 7:55 pm

Blog Cabin: Your Sports Weekend Planner

Coming up...

Unfortunately, I missed Griffey’s 600th homerun by one at-bat, last weekend. I went Sunday, and he hit the thing on Monday, in his first plate appearance. The saddest thing is; the area where he hit the ball was exactly where I was camped out with my wife and friend.

We had it all planned out, too. I was going to hurl my wife on top of everyone in the row in front of us. My buddy, meanwhile, would tackle anyone coming in our direction, leaving me to make the catch... I'm sure it would have been mine.

Well, now that my missed opportunity is behind me, I have to look forward to this weekend. I know I won't have a chance to catch history, but there’s still a lot going on in the world of sports.


Interleague play is back this weekend, giving us some very interesting matchups to look at.

Rays vs. Marlins
I wouldn't have said this at the beginning of the season, but these may be two of the best teams in baseball. Both teams have capable offenses, but pitching has been a real key for the clubs.

It’s starting to look like the Marlins got the better of that trade with Detroit in the offseason. Rookie Andrew Miller - one of the prospects they received in the trade - has four more wins than Dontrelle Willis, who’s now pitching in Single A. Although we won’t get to see Miller this weekend, we will get a chance to check out young Ryan Tucker. The rookie takes the mound, Friday, bringing a 1-0 record, and an ERA of 1.80. I got to see him last Sunday, and it seemed like he could be a very solid young arm.

Tampa Bay (38-28) and Florida (36-30) are both contenders for their respective divisions, so this should be a good series. The only thing missing will be Carl Crawford, who will be serving a suspension for his involvement in last week’s brawl with Boston.

Reds vs. Red Sox
Two teams going in different directions - Boston is atop the AL East at 42-27, while Cincinnati is in the cellar of the NL Central, 11½ games behind the Cubbies.

Why do I want to see this series, you ask? The only thing they have in common is Manny Ramirez and Ken Griffey Jr. both hitting milestones this year.

There’s still plenty to watch for, in this one. Griffey has been hot... or at least better then he has been in a while. Wouldn’t it be great to see these two Hall-of-Famers go homer-for-homer to see who ends up on top? C’mon, it could happen.

The Reds also bring young stars Jay Bruce and Edison Volquez in to the series. Volquez, especially, has been a treat to watch this season. Acquired from the Rangers in the trade for Josh Hamilton, Volquez is lining himself up for a Cy Young this season. He’ll enter Saturday’s contest with a 9-1 record and paltry 1.56 ERA.

Oh yeah, and look for the Red Sox to hang about 10 runs on once-dependable Aaron Harang.

Cubs vs. Blue Jays
The Cubs sit with the best record in the majors, and this weekend, they’ll ride a four-game win streak in to Toronto. The Cubs haven’t been at their best away from Wrigley, and the Jays will have their best arms waiting. “Doctor” Roy Halladay will take the ball on Saturday, and will probably go 9 innings, before handing it directly to Sunday-starter Jesse Litsch.

It will be interesting to see if the Cubs can hold up, especially with Alfonso Soriano out for a few more weeks.

US Open Golf

I’m guessing the Open will eat a large portion of my weekend. (Could be worse!) I've been paying close attention to the first two rounds, and it’s been a pretty strange leaderboard so far. Many young players are going to make the cut, leaving a few of the veterans out in the cold.

As I write this, notables behind the cut line include Mark O’Meara, Justin Rose, Vijay Singh, and last year’s winner, Angel Cabrera.

Obviously, the biggest question remaining is whether Tiger Woods or Phil Mickleson can make a run. They had a late tee time on Friday, but it doesn't look like they will have to make a huge push to the top. If they can shoot -2, they should be sitting pretty heading into Saturday

Torrey Pines has played tough in the first two rounds, and probably will get tougher as the weekend progresses.

NBA Finals - Game 5

Can the Boston Celtics close out the Lakers for the franchise’s first championship in 20 years? Can Kobe and the Lakers play a full 60 minutes of basketball?

I definitely can't wait to find out.

This series has seen both teams come back from 20-plus point deficits. The difference is that Boston won their game 4 comeback, while Los Angeles fell just short in game 2.

It’s good to know that both teams are going to in it at the end, but it can also be a little predictable. I say tune in for the last six minutes and enjoy.

Who am I kidding? I’ll be watching.

Kobe was the next Jordan until the Lakers went down 3-1, and I think that Sunday’s game will be the last. If it does look like it’s going in that direction, I fully expect Bryant to start back-handing his legacy-killing teammates right there on the court.

Somewhere... I can hear Shaq laughing.

From the Blogosphere...

Footballprophet returns to the list with his Diaries of a Crime Scene Analyst. This week, it's the second part in the story of JC, a toddler who was growing up in a meth lab.

Who's the greatest guitarist of all time? Da Fan in Japan has a bracket going. Cast your votes!

For the top minor league baseball prospects, take a look at pizza's phantastic blog. (Yeah, that's really what it's called.) This member ranks the top 40 prospects who are on their way to the pros.
Posted on: June 12, 2008 7:38 pm

Blog Cabin: Milton Bradley needs more crazy pills

In the news...

Just when you started to think that Milton Bradley’s crazy pills were working, he goes and does something like this. It’s unfortunate, too, because he’s been absolutely on fire at the plate.

If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, here’s the brief version -

During a game, Kansas City announcer Ryan Lefebvre was commenting on how Josh Hamilton has been able to shake a cocaine problem, and has bounced back to become somewhat of a national fan-favorite. During the course of that conversation, Lefebvre also talked about how Bradley has been unable to distance himself from his own troubled past.

Bradley heard the comments after the game and, being the sane and rational person that he is, decided to run up the stairs towards the announcer’s booth. Fortunately for him, he was intercepted by the Rangers GM just feet away from his next suspension.

OK, got the picture? Good.

Anyone shocked? Yeah, me neither.

While I don’t think that Lefebvre’s comments were warranted, Bradley was clearly exercising some horrible judgment. If an opposing announcer wants to judge a player based on past events, or doesn’t like a guy who gets in to it with the hometown fans... so what?

What do you expect when you’re in the other guy’s yard? You have to let that go. You have to be a man, and a professional. If anyone should know that by now, it’s you, Milton.

Maybe he really should be on some kind of medication. He’s already been to anger management, and he’s made it extremely clear that he still doesn’t see his behavior as a problem. (Hey, maybe Lefebvre was right.)

After this incident, Bradley said, “All I wanted to do was introduce myself and tell him, ‘the stuff you’re talking about is uncalled for’.”

He even went so far as to say, “People would automatically assume that if I went to meet that guy that we were going to start fighting. That would be completely out of my character. I never had a fight in my life.”

Yeah, well, I guess busting your wife’s lip wasn’t that much of a fight, now was it, Milton? (That was one of three domestic violence calls that police responded to at the Bradley household in the summer of 2005.)

That’s right; your past follows you, Milton. It’s going to take people a while to forget what a world-class idiot you’ve been. And yes, some of them will never let you live it down.

You’ve got to understand that doing things like this is no way to...

Crap... From the banging sound on my front door, I would guess that Milton just got here to “introduce” himself.

From the Blogosphere...
According to cirnick, the Pacers have a roster full of expendable players, and that means it's time for some wheelin' and dealin'. This member breaks down a bunch of possible trade scenarios that could help the team in the offseason.

Is there a gender bias in the Community? Dookisevil asks the question. Let her know what you think.

RealFerrari once again brings his scientific approach to ranking the best hitters in baseball. His rankings are based on bases earned per plate appearance, and I think there are definitely some interesting anomalies. Ryan Ludwick at No. 2?
Posted on: June 10, 2008 6:14 pm
Edited on: June 10, 2008 6:32 pm

Blog Cabin: 5 things I can't stand about soccer

At the risk of sounding like Jerry Seinfeld... What’s the deal with soccer?

For the second day in a row, I’ve been forced to watch these Euro Cup matches, and let me tell you, I’m just about at my wits end.

I don’t get it all; and I’ll be the first to admit that. But, you know what? I don’t want to get it. You want to know what else? I don’t feel bad about not wanting to get it.

I think a lot of people have started to watch soccer just to make themselves feel better. They feel like watching soccer exonerates them from being one of “those American elitists.” It’s a way to feel like they’re more in touch with the rest of the world. It’s trendy.

Personally, I think Americans have the right to be elitists when it comes to athletics. After all, America did come up with some pretty great sports, like basketball, baseball and football.

When you know that those sports exist, how can you possibly watch something as inferior as soccer? It’s like watching the WNBA, because it makes you feel like you’re not a sexist.

I understand that it’s the most popular sport worldwide, but the rest of those countries are the ones that didn’t invent the sports I listed above. Besides, the biggest reason for soccer’s popularity is the fact that it’s so cheap to play. All you need is a ball and something to kick it towards. Of course it’s the pride of the third world... and Europe for some odd reason.

Here are a few more reasons I don’t get soccer.

1. There are no increments in soccer. It’s impossible to keep track of a game played on a field that big when there’s absolutely nothing to keep track of. Besides goals, there seems to be nothing else going on... It’s just a bunch of guys running back and forth kicking a ball. It’s like watching a bird try to get one of those soda can rings off its neck... Yeah, the bird might get it off, but it will take an hour, and be one of the most painful things you’ve seen in your life.

2. Headbutting. I know that guy Zinedine Zidane floored a guy once, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the ball. When they were coming up with the rules for this game, who was the guy that said, “Using your skull to control the ball... Brilliant! That will make for an awesome game!”

3. The announcers. OK, that one commentator does kind of sound like the Lucky Charms Leprechaun, which is cool. But why are they all so overdramatic? Oh, wait, maybe it’s because they only get to talk about actual on-field action about twice a game. I don’t want to hear anyone call a sports team “dreamers” because they scored a goal, and I sure don’t need to hear a guy scream “Gooooooooaaaaalll” for a minute and a half.

4. Flopping. If people want to make fun of Paul Pierce, they should watch a game of Futball. These cats have the art of flopping mastered, and they really sell it. I mean, it’s Academy Award-worthy. Every time two players get close to each other, one guy acts like he just stepped on a land mine. In fact, if you mute the set, you might think you were watching a battle scene from Saving Private Ryan.

5. The lettuce. Seriously, the hair is ridiculous. I mean, a back-of-the-head Mohawk? A half-mullet rat-tail? Really? I guess the back of your dome is the best place to put a nifty hairdo if you’re going to be headbutting a ball all day.

OK. So, does any of this sound like something that should be televised in America? No!

Get your cursed talons out of my countrymen, soccer!

From the Blogosphere...

Harst is back on the list, and this time, he's put together his top three NBA Teams of all time. See who he left out.

The NHL season is barely over, but NYfan1982 already has his ideas for the Rangers' off-season. According to this member, signing superstars should not be a priority.

"If you want to be taken seriously as a fan, take your fandom seriously." That's the advice Yankeechick gives in her latest blog, in which she tells the slackers on the site to get their acts together.

Posted on: June 9, 2008 7:04 pm

Blog Cabin: Don't be 'that guy' at the game

From my life...

It doesn’t matter where I go, at every sporting event I attend, I always seem to sit next to “that guy”.

Now, I don’t mind people taking through a game, or screaming at the players. I don’t even mind the big, fat, smelly guy who’s had a few too many, and insists on a dancing the “shirtless shuffle” up and down the isle.

I’m fine with that, that’s what you expect when you go to a game.

What I don’t expect, is to see a couple ladies gossiping while knitting... and I have. In fact, it seems like most of the time, my “that guy” is a woman.

I’m not trying to say that women don’t belong at ballgames, or even that they don’t know the etiquette. By and large, women do just fine in the midst of the shirtless, sun-burned fat guys and over exuberant fantasy players. Most of them even know the game well enough to add something to the conversation that usually develops among the fans in your vicinity.

There are a few, though, that have no business anywhere near a sporting event. They drive me crazy! And why, God, do they always sound like Fran Drescher!?

The two knitters I mentioned before... Basically, they looked like fourth grade teachers, and they didn’t watch or say one word about the game. Not one! Of course, I did, unfortunately, get to hear about what Sally said to Marge, and why Anne’s granddaughter shouldn’t be dating that boy.

This type of thing has no place at the stadium, and I thoroughly believe that you should be able to call an usher and have them removed. After all, what if a foul ball came up there? These old hens could have been seriously hurt... and they probably would have freaked out and stabbed me in the neck with a knitting needle.

OK, the yarn-wielding grannies are maybe my best example, but I ran in to another of “those guys” yesterday at Dolphins Stadium.

The woman sitting right in front of me was probably in her mid-40s, but I could tell that most of those were hard years. At first, she just seemed like an average fan, but it didn’t take long for her to scare off the two guys sitting next to her.

I’m actually shocked that her date didn’t abandon her as well, because all she did was harass him about “smoking four cigarettes every time he went to get more beer”.

Self-medication, I’m sure.

By the third inning, it was full-on. She, for whatever reason, found it necessary to use her horse, nasaly voice to give play-by-play for the entire game.

If you can, imagine Joan Rivers as a baseball commentator, while holding her nose...

Yeah, it was brutal... and it would have driven me crazy, except for the first time, I figured out great way to combat the annoyingness.

I listened to her, and I imagined that she was the play-by-play voice.

“Oh, Keeen Greeffey hit a fowl bawl!”

“Oh, weeew, he made the catch ova theeer!”

I would have preferred not to have to role play through the entire game, but let me tell you, it made for one of the most hilarious games imaginable, and it was a small price to pay for the chance to catch No. 600.

In any case... Has anyone else had to deal with that guy or girl? I’m curious to hear some of the great stories from around the country.

From the Blogosphere...

Can Indiana make it to the NIT next season? While the NIT hardly seems important to many basketball fans, that's the question on The Teen Expert's mind. See what he predicts.

With the Greatest NFL Team of All Time complete, cirknick has decided to fill the void by putting together the Greatest Colts Team of All Time. This week: wide receivers.

Boziebob thinks that the NBA Playoffs are rigged, and to prove it, he sites the horrible disparity in free throws. Yeah right, Bob. Next you'll be telling me that boxing isn't legit.
Category: General
Posted on: June 6, 2008 7:54 pm
Edited on: June 6, 2008 8:05 pm

Blog Cabin: Your sports weekend planner

In the news...

There’s no better feeling than the one you get when you’re leaving the office on Friday. Walking out to your car, knowing that you will soon be relaxing on your couch, or on a bar stool, with a cold one in your hand, and watching the best athletes on the planet do what they do.

You can stay up past your bedtime if you want, and you can sleep right through the time when you’re normally grabbing your second cup of coffee at the workplace. All you have to do is make sure that you’re up in time for the start of day baseball.

Sure, you may have to mow the lawn or run a few errands, but you gotta love the weekend.

Here’s my guide to this weekend in sports


We’re all waiting to see if Griffey can get to 600. Heck, I’m even going to the Marlins vs. Reds game on Sunday, but, in all honesty, it could be August by the time it happens.

So, what else is going on in MLB?

Twins vs. White Sox

That’s right, the American League has two divisions besides the East, and this weekend the top two teams in the Central will battle. Neither team is playing spectacularly, but no division beats itself up like the AL Central. Also, if you haven’t seen Chicago’s young pitcher Gavin Floyd, you might want to take a peek on Sunday. We could have a budding superstar on our hands.

Angels vs. A’s
The top two teams in the AL West will also face off this weekend. Thanks to weak pitching, Saturday’s contest should be a slugfest. Sunday’s game, meanwhile, should have a much lower score, with aces Ervin Santana and Rich Harden taking the mound.

Yankees vs. Royals

I know these teams are nowhere near the top of their respective divisions, but Sunday will still bring us a pretty interesting storyline. Joba will take the mound for his second start, and it will be interesting to see if he’s able to improve from his last not-so-great outing. On the Kansas City side, Zack Grienke will try to bounce back from an awful last start.

Horse Racing

The 140th Belmont Stakes
In Saturday’s big race, Big Brown looks to become the first Triple Crown winner in 30 years. Ten horses will enter the starting gate, but can any of them beat the Big guy?

Millions of people will be watching and tens of thousands will be in attendance. Why wouldn't I want to watch what could be a great moment in sports history? This feat hasn't been accomplished in my lifetime, so if it happens, I want to see it.

This past week we've heard that Big Brown's hoof is fine, and that top-contender Casino Drive now has a bum foot. We’ve also heard that Hooters wants to get in on the action, by sponsoring the potential Triple Crown winner... which leads me to this funny note.

When the Hooters story came across the wire here in the newsroom, there was a series laughs around the office. The title: “Big Brown Hooters”. Lol... That’s still funny.

Let’s get to the race already!


Lakers vs. Celtics: Finals Game 2
After the Celtics beat the spread in game one, you would have expected that there would be a larger spread for game 2, right?

Wrong. The Lakers come in to the second contest as one-point underdogs.

We all know this will be a good game, and a good series. Basically, this is why people watch the NBA... or at least the NBA Finals. It’s the biggest names on the greatest stage, and in this case, it’s the resurrection of a long-dead rivalry.

Personally, I have a hard time believing that Boston will be able to hold off Kobe twice in a row... at least not if Bryant decides to shoot the ball in the fourth quarter this time. Man, some of his passes in game 1 were horrendous.

I’ll take the Lakers by six. Kobe scores 36.


French Open Women’s Final
Dinara Safina will take on Ana Ivanovic on Saturday and, for those of you who don’t know, women’s tennis might be the only sport besides volleyball where the women are actually equally as entertaining as the men. On clay, especially, you can see an amazing variety of shots and angles. This match could help Ivanovic make her case as one of the best female players in the world.

Oh, and by the way, Ana, the bronzed goddess that she is, would make this worth watching even if both players were standing still. I mean... Wow.

French Open Men’s Final
On Sunday, the men take the stage... and it should be one for the ages. No. 1 Roger Federer goes up against arch-nemesis No. 2 Rafael Nadal, in the pair’s second French Finals meeting.

Federer is after his 13th major title, which would place him one behind the great Pete Sampras... but he’ll have his work cut out for him. Nadal owns Roger on clay. In fact, Federer is 1-8 versus Nadal on the red court, and 0-3 in the French Open.

From the Blogosphere...

Donbedouin has some interesting things you might not know about the 2008 Chicago Cubs. For instance, did you know that Ryan Theriot is in 6th place for the MLB batting title?

If you like to watch Cold Case or Law and Order, you might want to check out one of the most interesting blogs since the blogosphere's inception. Footballprophet brings us his Diary of a true Crime Scene Analyst... and that name should tell you everything you need to know about its subject.

The always-dependable PAOLO is back on the list, as he's once again recognized for his spectacular Marlins breakdowns. If you like the Fish, this is the place to be.
Posted on: June 4, 2008 7:28 pm
Edited on: June 4, 2008 7:33 pm

Blog Cabin: Who can't debate sports?

From my life...

For many fans, talking sports is almost as fun as watching them. And, what better way to talk sports than to get a nice debate going about the hot topics of the day, right?

Well, for the most part, that’s true. But, sometimes, you run across a person who, for whatever reason, has such a delusional perspective that it makes a normal dialog utterly impossible. Their points make little sense, and their logic seems as though it came from a completely different dimension.

It’s frustrating. It’s infuriating. It makes you want to grab that person and shake them until their brain starts to function again.

Enter, my friend Will.

I’ll preface this by saying that Will is, without a doubt, one of the most knowledgeable fans I know. He is well versed in many sports, and has a better than average understanding of sports history.

I’ve been friends with Will since college, and after having many time-consuming debates with him, I’ve come up with a small list of grievances.

Please tell me if you’ve experienced something similar, or if you think I’m the crazy one.

1. A general lack of perception when it comes to the realities of sports.

He believes that a team with “heart” can beat a team with talent. He thinks that professional players would rather sign with a winner than take a contract with the highest bidder... not ringless veterans, mind you, but guys at the beginning of their careers.

Basically, he prefers to ignore the monetary aspect of sports, and views things through the scope of a Disney movie. “Guys that try hard make the squad. The underdog team really can work together and win the championship.”

2. He has some kind of bizarre love affair with drafts, real and imaginary.

He loves to play video games on “manager mode”. He’ll simulate entire seasons of game play, only to focus on drafting and signing players.

Even when he does play a season of Madden, he’ll make due with a sub-par quarterback or running back, while hoarding picks for the draft. Doesn’t he realize he can trade his first-round pick and his mediocre quarterback for Tom Brady or LaDainian Tomlinson?

I know it wouldn’t work in reality, but it works in the game, so why not do it?

In real life, he’s quick to suggest trading proven players for picks in the draft. If he was an owner, every unhappy star would immediately be dealt for a 3rd and a 5th.

See ya, Ocho Cinco. See ya, Jason Taylor.

He honestly believes that picks are somehow equal to a Chad Johnson... even though history would show that those players have only a small chance to make a significant impact in the long run.

Don’t get me wrong, drafts are important... They’re just not as important as getting or keeping proven players.

*This trait isn’t all bad, it does help me beat him consistently at Madden.

3. He believes everything he hears.

Will heard an Atlanta Braves commentator say that John Smoltz studies hitters, so now he thinks Smoltz will be a MLB hitting coach when he retires.

He heard some crazy story about the Miami Heat trading Dwyane Wade for draft picks... so he told me about that “immanent” transaction.

When the guys on TV started to talk about the Triple Crown of horse racing, he immediately started thinking that winning one of those is just as hard as winning one in baseball. Never mind that most of baseball’s Triple Crowns came from an era of 16 teams... He didn’t want to hear it.

Doesn’t he understand that the TV media needs to come up with these things to generate interest, and that they’re not always factual or even possible? These guys say things like "LeBron is better than Jordan" or "Terrell Owens should be banned for celebrating." Why? Because it's inflammatory, or invokes a strong reaction... It's good television.

Nope... He doesn't get it.

From the Blogosphere...

Mock MLB drafts seem to be all the rage in the blogosphere lately, which is good, because most people pay little attention to baseball prospects. Today, it's time to take a look at a few our our member's picks.



Posted on: June 2, 2008 7:30 pm

Blog Cabin: Proven players deserve to get paid

In the news...

Let's get serious for a minute...

We absolutely must put a cap on how much money NFL rookies can make.

JaMarcus Russell signed a huge contract with the Raiders last year, and what did the Raiders get? 373 passing yards and a 4-12 record.

This year, Matt Ryan, the third overall pick, got a $72 million contract with $35 million in guarantees. We're talking about a guy being paid like Tom Brady and Peyton Manning without even stepping on to an NFL field.

What if he turns out to be the next Tim Couch? Or worse yet, the next Ryan Leaf? Uugh, I shudder at the thought.

The solution should be a mandatory three-year contract for rookies taken in the first two rounds. The contract would be worth a certain amount, depending on the round and pick. There would be a designated a price range for these players, but the teams and agents could work out a deal within those terms.

It just makes no sense to pay an unproven player as much as multiple Pro-Bowlers and Super Bowl winners. Not when there are guys like Marques Colston in the league to help me make my argument... and every team has one.

Man, sometimes, you really can't hold it against an "underpaid" player who wants to hold out.

I know... I can't believe I said it either, but it's true.

Let's take the Colston example... He's twice as good as any receiver the Lions have ever drafted. He's better than Bernard Berrian. Comparing him to Javon Walker's overpaid butt is just laughable.

In fact, Colston stacks right up there with the best in the league, but he's getting paid the minimum salary because he was taken in the seventh round.

Here are a few quick stats from the 2007 season. Terrell Owens had 81 receptions for 1,355 yards and 15 touchdowns. Randy Moss caught 98 passes for 1,493 yards and 23 touchdowns. Ocho Cinco racked up 93 receptions for 1,440 yards and 8 touchdowns.

Colston - 98 catches, for 1202 yards and 11 touchdowns.

The numbers are pretty close to the big boys, but he's getting paid a fraction of their salaries.

In this year's draft, no receivers were taken in the first round, but I'll guarantee you that all those second-rounders are going to get more money than Colston this year. And, maybe, one of them puts up numbers like Colston did his rookie year, when he amassed 70 receptions, 1,038 yards and 8 touchdowns... and that was in 14 games.

My point is this... If a player proves himself in the first two years of his rookie contract, then, and only then, should he be able to restructure his contract for the third year or for an extension.

This plan would allow teams to keep their young and talented players, while not disrespecting the veterans. Meanwhile, budding stars, like Colston, can be rewarded, while players that don't produce can be cut with little money invested and no salary cap penalties.

From the Blogosphere...

Harst is back on the list with a sweet afro avatar and an even sweeter NBA Finals preview. No kidding, this blog is awesome. Take a look.

So, who won out in the Josh Hamilton for Edison Volquez trade? Metheronia breaks it down for both sides.

Check out The Bong Zone for a conversation about Tom Brady and his skill players. Specifically, Bong wonders how most of Tom's supporting cast seems to do better when he's not on the field. I know... It sounds funny to me, too, but check out the stats.
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