Monday, August 16, 2010
Fellow sackmaster says 'Schobel wore out'
By Tim Graham
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- The New England Patriots won't sign veteran pass-rusher Aaron Schobel.
Schobel, after nine seasons with the Buffalo Bills, announced Monday he has decided to retire after a summer of vacillating. The Bills tired of his indecisiveness two weeks ago and cut him. That allowed him to sign with any team he wanted in pursuit of a championship.
He apparently didn't have the stomach for it anymore.
"Aaron Schobel wore out," New York Jets outside linebacker Jason Taylor said. "Plus, losing will do that to you, too. When you're winning, everything's a little easier."
Schobel's situation came up in a conversation I had with Taylor on Saturday morning. Nobody terrorized AFC East quarterbacks more over the past decade than they did. Taylor is the NFL's active sacks leader with all but 3.5 of his 127.5 career sacks occurring with the Miami Dolphins. Schobel's 74 career sacks -- all with the Bills -- are second in the division.
Schobel also tops the list of sacks on Patriots quarterback Tom Brady with 12. Taylor is next with 9.5 sacks.
Despite Schobel's production and two Pro Bowl selections, Buffalo had only one winning season since it drafted him in 2001.
"That's sad," Taylor said. "As a competitor and as an athlete, you understand what they go through. Nobody likes to be on the losing end of things.
"He's such a good player, plays the game so hard and always laid it on the line. He's one of those guys that we around the league look at and respect the way the kid works. Everybody has a boiling point. I guess he hit his."
That's when I mentioned to Taylor that as bleak as the Bills' outlook was for 2010, they also lost running backs Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch to injuries on the opening drive of Friday night's preseason opener.
"Yikes," said Taylor, his eyes bulging at the news. "You never count anybody out in this league, though, but goodness gracious."