Chat with Chris Mortensen
Mortensen, an award-winning journalist and one of the most respected and accomplished reporters covering the NFL, joined ESPN in 1991 and appears on Sunday NFL Countdown, Monday Night Countdown and SportsCenter.
Send your questions now and join Mort on Wednesday at 11 a.m. ET!
Chris Mortensen (11:03 AM)
Good morning. Big day and night. NFL32 on ESPN2 at 6 ET with Troy Aikman as a guest..then NFL Insiders Special from 9:30 to 11 tonight with John Clayton, Adam Schefter and Trey Wingo. But first, your questions...
Aaron B (Lexington, KY)
Hi Chris. What will it take for the Browns to become an actual winning franchise?
Chris Mortensen (11:05 AM)
Stability. You cannot keep firing front offices and coaches and expect to build a sustainable winning franchise. That creates upheaval in personnel and scheme philosophies. I do believe the Browns need to assess the QB situation if they have a first-round talent staring at them next April. I thought Colt McCoy actually threw the ball well the other night and he does need more skill talent around him. Keep building.
Brian (Fishers, IN)
How likely is it that the Chiefs decide to retain Crennel as their head coach for next season? Would he be a good fit with Pioli and the organization?
Chris Mortensen (11:08 AM)
I think Crennel is a candidate and should be a candidate. I also believe that GM Scott Pioli would love to lure Kirk Ferentz from Iowa to head things up. Does Josh McDaniels fit into the picture? Maybe as a long-shot head coach candidate but a reasonable offensive coordinator candidate.
kathy (atlanta ga)
I would like to know why Big Ben never gets any love. All he does is win, and no he's not out there for style points, but he can run, pass, tackle and block. A quarterback who's also an athlete, Brady can't or won't do the tough stuff. If nothing else, Ben is certainly one of the most exciting players in the game
Chris Mortensen (11:09 AM)
Kathy, you do know that Ben gets plenty of adoration and compliments from analysts, right? I never hear a conversation about elite quarterbacks in the NFL without Ben on that list.
Any chance Elway trades Tebow in offseason for a 1st RP to get a QB he wants?
Chris Mortensen (11:12 AM)
Nobody is giving a high draft pick for Tebow. I believe Tebow will be part of the QB mix in 2012. If the Broncos should win the division and he continues to show improvement, then I believe Tebow will going into the off-season as the starter. Under those circumstances, the Broncos draft in April will then will be focused of taking the best player available rather than absolutely commit to taking a quarterback. Now the best player available could still be a quarterback. Regardless, they have to add QBs to the roster because Brady Quinn will be a free agent.
What are the chances the Seahawks are able to keep Marshawn Lynch after this season? Aging running backs are tough to pay for, but he has been by far their best and at times only weapon this year. If not Seattle, who might compete for his services and be willing to pay?
Chris Mortensen (11:13 AM)
Marshawn Lynch has got to be an excruciating financial decision because of running back shelf life combined with his running style, which ranks among the most physical backs in the NFL. I think the Seahawks will try to put down an offer that makes sense or franchise him.
Shu (The ATL)
Mort, are the Cowboys cursed? I know that the defense is bad but everything that can go wrong goes wrong for that team. They have a chance to win the game and Miles Austin loses the football in the lights. C'mon, Mannnnnnnnnnn!!!
Chris Mortensen (11:15 AM)
I think the Cowboys are a team in transition. I agree with Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News - this is a team that needs help on the D-line, linebacker and secondary. There's somewhat of a myth that this is a team "loaded" with talent. There is good talent, not great talent. Yet I understand why Cowboys fans would be frustrated because of things just like you're talking about.
Hi Mort, thank for doing this chat with us. It looks like the Chargers have started to play some football again a little to late. Doesn't the last 2 weeks almost work against Norv Turner? It shows what this team is capable of when prepared. If you are the Chargers which up and coming coached would you be looking at?
Chris Mortensen (11:17 AM)
I think Norv will have a tough time keeping his job, even though owner Dean Spanos knows that injuries have taken a toll and a lot of players have missed practice PLUS the talent level - like the Cowboys - is nowhere near the hype.
Shane (Robins AFB, GA)
Mort, have we reach a time when unneccessary roughness calls as they relate to roughing the passer and defenseless receivers should be CHALLENGEABLE? The onus would still be on the challenging coach if he believes there is irrefutable evidence to overturn the call, but the inconsistency in the calls is what I think drives the fans' frustrations. If it weren't for the Harrison hit on McCoy, I think London Fletcher's hit on Brady would be talked about a lot more this week. Thoughts?
Chris Mortensen (11:19 AM)
Shane, all I can tell you is I highly doubt that these type of calls will ever be subject o review.
Thanks to the Childress contract mistake, Leslie Frazier will get another year to turn the Vikings around. What do you expect out of them next season and what areas should be on their priority list to be addressed. Thank you.
Chris Mortensen (11:21 AM)
I'm not the guy to talk to if you believe a coach should be fired after one or two years. Other teams that play the Vikings contend the Vikings need to really beef up the roster on the O-line and much of the defense. I do like Christian Ponder at QB. These things can turn around but as you know it is a very tough NFC North.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
Do you think the suspension leveled on James Harrison is too light? He kind of just laughs it off, and it's a joke because apparently everyone else in the league can change their style of play and he won't or doesn't care to try to...
Chris Mortensen (11:24 AM)
I did not believe Harrison should have been suspended - I know I am in the minority. Colt McCoy didn't help himself by actually tucking the ball as a running back and as he reached the line of scrimmage abruptly brought his arm up to flip the ball and, thus, became a passer again as Harrison was closing on him. Harrison doesn't believe in the "repeat offender" philosophy but the NFL suspended him on that basis.
The Broncos defense plays great, holds the Bears to 10pts, and Matt Prater hits a 59 and 51 yard FG to end the game but Tebow is the winner? Don't you think this narrative is getting kind of silly considering how obviously terrible at passing Tebow has been?
Chris Mortensen (11:25 AM)
Some of it has been ridiculous. We always talk about football being the ultimate team game - as Tebow did this week - and then we go overboard with one individual, usually the QB. However, I do think Tebow has thrown the ball better the past two weeks - especially in the 4th quarter - and deserves his share of credit, too.
Mort, i see the skins with barkley being their first pick, but if not does rg111 fit wut they wanna do in their system plus he is mobile...
Chris Mortensen (11:27 AM)
I think Robert Griffin III probably fits what the Redskins like to do more than Barkley.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What Happened to the NFL Teams who started out Great & Now they are Terrible Such as the Buffalo Bills
Chris Mortensen (11:28 AM)
The Bills' roster just is't deep enough yet to survive the amount of good players they have lost through attrition (injuries). That's something GM Buddy Nix is trying to do - build a deep roster.
with jennings injury vs. the raiders in a meaningless game, if the packers win sunday and clinch a total home field advantage..do you see them forgoing 16-0 to rest and save players
Chris Mortensen (11:31 AM)
I think the Packers will play hard and aggressive to build up leads and then rest guys, as necessary. That's something we're going to talk about tonight on NFL32 at 6 ET (ESPN2) and then again on the NFL Insiders Special at 9:30 ET tonight. We also have a Saturday NFL Countdown show at 11 a.m. ET this week, in addition to our normal Sunday NFL Countdown at 10 a.m. ET. Thanks and God Bless!