NFC West: Kyle Turley

Seventh pick too much for Kevin Kolb?

February, 17, 2011
As promised, Kevin Kolb's potential trade value has provided a starting point for additional discussion.

"Shades" from Chico, Calif., used the recently concluded NFC West chat to question why NFL teams seem to over-value draft choices, and specifically whether the San Francisco 49ers would be foolish to consider trading the seventh overall choice for Kolb:
These are unproven, college players. Kevin Kolb has been an NFL starting QB, has had success, and has a nice upside. If he were a collegiate player, he would surely go high -- perhaps even with the No. 7 pick if he were as he is today. Can somebody, anybody, please, please give me a triple Oy Vey? I'd be all teeth to see the 49ers land Kolb and it doesn't seem like a No. 7 pick is too much of a reach, given the state of the QB situation. Of course, I'd rather trade a large turkey leg, a Prince Purple Rain CD, a sack of frozen burritos, a case of frozen Otter Pops, a BBQ-slathered porksteak, and a gigantic bowl of corn for Kolb. Smile.

This is a question I'd like to throw open for discussion, then revisit Friday.

First, I'll provide a chart showing the last 20 players drafted seventh overall, with how many seasons they played and how many Pro Bowl seasons they have earned, courtesy of Pro Football Reference.

NFC West Penalty Watch: Ejection notes

December, 17, 2010
Justin Smith's disqualification from the San Francisco 49ers' game against San Diego on Thursday night marked the first for an NFC West player since 2005.

Officials ejected Damione Lewis, then with the St. Louis Rams, from a 2005 game. Two more Rams, Tommy Polley and Orlando Pace, suffered ejections in 2004.

No other players have suffered disqualifications for current NFC West teams since at least 2001, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

A quick look at NFC West disqualifications since 2001:
  • Smith, 2010, Week 15: The 49ers' defensive end shoved umpire Garth DeFelice's arm away while DeFelice separated players following a play. Smith said he didn't realize it was an official making contact with him.
  • Lewis, 2005, Week 7: Replays showed the defensive tackle punching New Orleans center LeCharles Bentley in the groin area during the Rams' 28-17 victory over the Saints.
  • Pace, 2004, Week 10: Pace made contact with side judge Don Carlsen during a fracas involving Rams and Seattle Seahawks players. The Rams won the game, 23-12.
  • Polley, 2004, Week 15: Polley shoved Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Russell Davis in the face while Davis was standing on the sideline without his helmet during the fourth quarter. Trash talk escalated when Davis tapped Polley's helmet.

These were the only four ejections I could find by searching for fouls listed as disqualifications.

I recall Cardinals offensive lineman Elton Brown drawing an ejection for bumping an official during a 2009 exhibition game. Back in 1998, officials ejected 49ers defensive lineman Bryant Young for twice retaliating against allegedly dirty tactics used by Kyle Turley, then with the Saints.

Turley, the Rams and concussion fallout

January, 29, 2010
Kyle Turley was outspoken during his playing days with the Saints, Rams and Chiefs. He remains outspoken as an advocate for concussion awareness.

Unlike some ex-players dealing with medical conditions, Turley says he would have stopped playing earlier had he known what awaited.

"I wouldn’t go back and do it the way I’ve done it, which is why I'm out there really trying to change these things," Turley told 790 The Ticket in Miami, according to "Because it shouldn’t have been up to me to come back after having a serious concussion. One of the highest-grade concussions you can have, I had been playing in St. Louis in 2003. I was knocked unconscious, I had to get woke up off the field and walked to the sideline, and the way I was treated in that situation and was able to play the next week wouldn’t and shouldn’t have been the case if I had the right people advising me, looking over my situation and if the right rules were followed."

Turley says he deals with severe sensitivity to light, plus depression and anxiety. Lots of people who never played football experience such symptoms, of course, but someone suffering multiple concussions is obviously more vulnerable. The NFL has become far more proactive in dealing with concussions. If Turley were playing for the Rams at present, there's almost no way he would have played one week after suffering a serious concussion. The Rams held out first-round draft choice Jason Smith for the final six games after Smith suffered one.

Earlier: Turley with Malcolm Gladwell of the New Yorker.