Morning, fellow Easterners. I'll be with you as soon as I put the finishing touches on the ark in the backyard. (Seriously -- are our Dallas-area readers getting decent weather? Because if so I may either need to move there or get a waterproof laptop...)
Anyway, remember 24 hours ago when we were wondering along with Donovan McNabb why he gets so much grief all the time? Well, it turns out great minds think alike, and Jemele Hill had McNabb on the brain yesterday, too. Jemele believes it's time (or past time) for McNabb to stick up for himself against the silly garbage that's always being thrown at him.
She makes a good case, of course, but I guess I'm just not that sort of guy. I don't agree with validating baseless charges by addressing them or firing back. McNabb's always spent his time on the high road, and he seems to be pretty comfortable with the life he's lived, the career he's had and the man he is. Just my opinion, and I know others feel differently, but for me, if you know the stuff being said about you has no merit, what's the point of even acknowledging it?
I remain intrigued by McNabb's quote from a couple of days ago, in which he wondered why a guy who's done so little to ruffle feathers always finds himself at the center of these odd controversies. I'd especially love to hear from Eagles fans on this. Redskins fans, sure, but you've only had the one year with him and it didn't go well enough for me to expect a wide range of opinions. So really, I'd like to hear from Eagles fans, who knew him so well for so long, about why a guy who's accomplished so much and carried himself like a pro the whole time is so easy for people to malign.
Fire away in the comments or in the mailbag (I have mentioned the mailbag, right?) and I'll check back in all day to see what people think. Meantime, let's link it up.
The funeral for Ron Springs called to mind one of the great teammate stories of the past several years. Everson Walls, who donated a kidney to Springs in 2007, mourned his friend.
Forced to work out without new defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, the Cowboys' defense is kind of freelancing it, the Dallas Morning News says. It's got to be weird, knowing you'll have a new boss but having little to no idea what, exactly, he'll want from you. I think it's safe to assume that, if there is a 2011 season, the Cowboys' defense will be a lot simpler than what they'll run out there in 2012.
New York Giants
Tom Coughlin did a phone interview Thursday on "NFL Live" and expressed frustration over the lockout preventing him and his coaches from having access to "the rookies, the veterans and the surgical repairs." The coaches really are caught in the middle of this whole thing, aren't they? No union (or trade association) looking out for them. Some could end up being judged on their successes and failures during a season for which they were given inadequate time to prepare. Not that Coughlin necessarily fits this description, but if you're a coach on thin ice, you have to hope your bosses will give you some leeway if the season doesn't go exactly the right way.
Incidentally, Coughlin also discusses Plaxico Burress in that interview. Says re-signing Burress "really hasn't been discussed by any of us," but that he's happy the guy will soon be reunited with his family.
The Giants are having a contest where you can go on their site and vote for the best "fan story." The winners will get their pictures on tickets to a 2011 game. Assuming, of course, there are 2011 games.
Attendance was apparently not what Michael Vick had hoped it would be, but he and a couple of his receivers gathered in South Jersey for a workout Thursday. Still feels kind of surreal that Michael Vick is the guy leading and organizing team workouts, right? I may have more on that later today, just FYI, so come on back. Oh, who am I kidding? I know you'll come back. You guys are the BEST.
Les Bowen caught up with Eagles first-round pick Danny Watkins, who spent time hanging out with his old firefighter buddies in British Columbia while waiting out the lockout. Don't worry, though, Eagles fans. Here's the money quote: "I didn't run into any burning buildings." Phew. Can't imagine too many insurance policies covering that.
Former FanHouse colleague David Elfin writes that Carlos Rogers wouldn't mind playing for the Cowboys or Eagles. Rogers claims to be the second-best cornerback on the market after Nnamdi Asomugha (Yes, that's three days in a row his name appears in the NFC East breakfast links!), which feels like a stretch, but it's the lockout. Everyone can talk/dream/fudge the truth. This highlights the fact that the Redskins still have some work to do to add pieces to that 3-4 defense in Jim Haslett's critical second year running it in Washington.
Dan Steinberg went scouring old newspaper stories for some John Beck facts. I like the part about the hunting videos Beck makes. We can all learn something during this lockout, even if it's about mule deer.
Enjoy the day. I gotta go find two giraffes.