Hi folks. Couple quick notes as we get started: Column blog for the week is up -- it's on Titans receivers working to get off press coverage. Please visit me on <a href="http://www.facebook.com/people/Paul-Kuharsky-Espn/1821907159" target="_blank">my Facebook page</a>.
You know PK, I'm a bit upset about how these chats are handled. Are they one hour or two hours? The communication back and forth between us has really been lacking and I feel left in the dark.
You never write, you never call, you never fax, you never text. One hour. Once in a while two by special petition. Just like you do during a timeout with Tom or Clyde.
Paul, Great stuff week to week. I've got a Titans question for you: As good as our D was last year (and granted, a large part of that had to do with Haynesworth's dominance), should it not be better against both the pass and run this year? I don't think we lose much on the DL, with T. Brown and J. Jones in the middle and Bosch, Kearse, Ball and Hayes on the ends. Our LB's only get better with the maturation of Tulloch, and our secondary has gone from the weakest to the strongest position set on the field. What rank do you think our D will have by week 17?
I don't know about better. As good, maybe. A full season of KVB will help offset loss of Albert. Secondary is excellent. Depth there and at LB a concern if there is an injury. I think the offense will score more, which will be a big help too.
Do you think that with Nate Washington and Kenny Britt in the line up, That Kerry Collins will be able to hit them with the deep ball in his old age? Also if he can't hit them with the deep ball you think that they will bring in VY?
1) Yes 2) No
Even with an OLine decimated with injuries and starting a mediocre Khalif Barnes at LT, the Jags finished 18th in rushing in 2008. They finished 15th in passing despite the worst receiving corps in the league (at least in terms of drops). This year, the OL should be much stronger, opening holes for Maurice Drew and giving Garrard more time to throw. Moreover, with Torry Holt and the talented and productive (in college) receivers they've drafted, the receiving corps should definitely improve. Is a top 10 finish in offense in the card for 2009?
I think when you're losing big and people play prevent, some of those numbers are fluff. Look at points (24th) and third down (16th) as better gauges. It should be a much improved offense, and we will have a chance to get a real read on Garrard. Top 10? Not so sure they jump 10 spots, but possible.
Hello Paul, Since Fisher pretty much knows he'll be around no matter if he's 4-12 or 13-3, what's his motivation to win the big one? He makes the same regardless does he not? Just seems like change ain't all that bad (see Mike Tomlin).
You think he's complacent and since he's safe, he doesn't care if they win or lose? Seriously? His incentive is he wants a ring, a legacy, players who did it all, etc. Change is good, see Tomlin. Also see Scott Linehan, Cam Cameron, Mike Nolan, etc.
Paul, I feel I am the only one concerned that Kevin Mawae can not stay healthy a full season. Maybe I am putting too much importance on the Center position but stability at Center is important. Much like the QB he touches the ball on every play.
Leroy Harris could step in and do well.
The whole Moore/Mudd situation has had people down on the Colts hopes for this season. However, it seems like it is no big deal that Tennesse is chaning their D-coordinator, when defense is virtualy everything to them. Thoughts?
Tennessee lost a coordinator who got a better job, and it's their only change. Indy lost its very highly regarded head coach, fired its DC, fired its special teams coach, and has new guys at OC and on the OL at least for now. Way more turnover for the Colts.
Being a loyal Jags fan, it's apparent that the Jack Del Rio era has always been defense first. With all the new additions brought in this year it seems like the philosophy has changed. What do you think caused the change of heart for the Jaguars?
Their offense was brutal last year, and no matter how good the D is, they have to be able to run it and possess the ball some.
DO you see me coming back strong this year or am I rushing my progress? Go Blue
I can't pretend to know your timetable, but I expect you'll be a contributor for sure.
You're gonna have to eat your words when Kerry gets injured early this year and I make it rain all over the field. What will you have to say about my salary if I take the Titans to the Super Bowl this year?
I'd say a $4.5 million bonus and a $14 million cap number are still too big in 2010 and I might just let you test the market.
Can I be the water boy on your AFC South basketball team? The position seems tailor-made for someone who can make it rain.
Hired. But you answer to me, OK? (I know that line works, i saw Jeff Fisher use it.)
Why can't the ESPN Bloggers have pictures that don't look like they drive around in an unmarked van with blackout windows asking kids if they want some candy?
Send me your headshot. Let's see what a work of art you are?
I have been reading the power rankings for the 2009-10 season and almost everone has the Titans around 15-18th best team in the NFL. Didnt we upgrade at receiver and add depth at every needed position. We lost Haynesworth but we have guys that are great role players so WTF??? And per Madden 2010 how is Chris Johnson not a top 10 back?
The Madden rankings have to factor in that a guy isn't "full time," I would think. But you might want to check with gaming guru Tim Graham on that one. It's not unreasonable for a voter to think the Titans just had one of those years where everything clicked and the schedule fell just right. I don't think that's the case, but I think such a case can be made.
I think everyone knows the Colts have a new head coach, and more turnover. My point being the microscope is 100% on the Moore/Mudd thing, with pretty mucn no mention of the Tennesse D-coordinator change.
Schwartz's successor has been in place for months. The timing of Moore and Mudd makes the transitions at their spots unusual, don't you think? Manning does.
That's a personal foul against Coach Fisher for whining about power rankings when it's not even June yet, 15 yards and repeat 2nd down.
Welcome Ed. Is the weather to your liking? Short sleeves?
How do you see the Titans doing against the Colts' offense seeing how they lost a starting cornerback and the best defensive tackle in the league? Also, how high a seed in the playoffs do you think the Titans will land?
Sorry, not going to be predicting playoff seeding in May. They lost a starting corner? I saw Finnegan and Harper at practice last week.
Speaking of the Colts, what has emerged ON the field out of their OTAs so far? Is Gonzalez staying in the slot? Did a replacement for Marvin bubble to the top out of the young guys? Just wondering...
I don't think a clear cut third receiver is going to emerge in a couple light practices with no real contact. I was not there to see for myself. I will be at their minicamp starting a week from tomorrow.
Who will be the #2 back in Jax and what share of carries do you expect? Also, will MJD lose goal-line carries to Greg Jones?
Everything I've been told and heard is that they intend on getting Jones 10 carries or touches a game as the second guy. Rashad Jennings might have something to say about that.
So good call Mike Reinfeldt on letting Randy Starks go! And for not overpaying on guys like Travis LaBoy, Antwan Odom, Travis Henry... I could go on. It seems Mike gets blasted for a lot of his decisions, but over time they all make more sense, agree?
The Titans didn't think for a second about re-signing Starks. They have a history before and during the Reinfeldt era of letting guys go on time -- with the exception of the cap purge guys like Mason and Rolle.
Do you think that since Jacob Ford has one year under his belt coming off the bench, he will repalce Kearse at some point through the season as the starter?
You don't really want Ford to start. Starting is overrated. If you think he's a better rush option than Kearse, then you want him playing third down. Washburn said a couple weeks ago if he had to put a lineup on the field, Ball would start. So Kearse is hardly a lock for that.
As much as I want my Jags to be the Miami or Atlanta of 2009 I'm just not sure it can happen. I expect better play on defense however we are asking this team to utilize 2 aging vets in the passing game (Northcut and Holt) and an aging vet on the line (Trea). You're then asking for at least 2 rookies to be WR threats and rookies to be o-line help. If one rookie steps up the offense will be better but when a team needs multiple rookies to step up that is a problem. It is what was demanded from Harvey and Groves which was very unrealistic.
I hereby declare Brian president of Jaguars fans, and bestow on him the responsibility of spreading his reasonable, measured and largely unemotional view of his team to the masses. But I use the word masses loosely.
I hear all the time that Kerry Collins has a big arm...Yeah he did back in the day but i have yet to see it since he has been in TN. You think he can throw bombs to Washington and others?
Yup. He's got a big arm.
Schwartz's successor has been in place for months. Moore and Mudd's successor's have been in place for years. And you're making a mountain out of a mole hill with Peyton's comments. He wasn't saying the transition is unusual. He was just frustrated that Polian hadn't given him the 411 on when they were coming back.
I mean, Chuck Cecil has been working as the defensive coordinator for months. He's been on the staff for years too. Did you want my answer to the question, or did you want me to say what you wanted to hear? The uncertainty of what's going to happen with those guys is going to have a bearing on the Colts, at least for a while. In my opinion.
Paul, I've yet to hear any follow-up about the Fat Albert/tampering charge. The Titans had 2 years to sign him and everybody knew they weren't going to come off the cash, what's the big deal with these accusations? Are they really that hard-up for draft picks or is it a rouse to appease the fan base? (Implying that somehow he would still be a Titan if not for those meddling Redskins).
The Titans haven't made a big deal. They passed along some "evidence." They didn't aggressively lobby for an investigation, they left that to the NFL to decide. No, they weren't going to sign him. But if Washington did move early, don't the Bucs and other suitors who waited have legit complaints? And shouldn't the league enforce the rules so that teams that follow them don't wind up suffering for doing so?
Hey Paul--do you think I'll be playing for my hometown Jags next year, selling out the stadium and saving the franchise?
I'm not convinced you're going to maintain your Midas touch in the NFL.
Will Chris Johnson ever win a Rushing Title with the Titans?
Maybe. But he's never going to get the same high percentage of the carries that some other star RBs will.
It susck that most questions that involve the Jaguars somehow involve a backhanded comment about our fan base, but I guess we did that to ourselves. However, I think that it's not too much to expect better wide receiver play as I can't forsee a way for it to get worse. I agree that the playoffs are a longshot, but most people are predicting we suffer a season simlar to last with one analyst even saying were the 5th worst team in the league. Maybe it's wishful thinking on my part, but I feel like a 7 to 9 wins isn't unreasonable.
I agree. But I think they will have a tough time in the division.
What do you have to say about the report that I've gained 18 pounds of muscle without losing any of my speed?
That's a lot of muscle. Read Del Rio recently saying he looks for guys that need bulk to add 5 a year. That seems a more reasonable pace. Too much too fast makes me wonder when the injury hits?
Hey Paul, you got me in the championship right?
Poor, poor NBA. Won't be able to jam its stars of choice down our throats. Yawn.
BUT, even if the tampering charges are proven it's the Skins that lose a pick, not the Titans gaining one, correct?
In the Briggs case, Chicago got some small upgraded pick from SF -- a swap in one round. In addition to 49ers getting a pick taken away, i believe. If the Titans get something, it won't be very much.
I'll put my name in the hat for VP. Not only are you relying on said veterans and rookies, but you are replacing an absurd number of starters. Remember, Barnes, Taylor, Peterson, Spicer, and Sensabaugh were all significant contributors (though you can probably consider Jones/Williams for Holt/Dillard/Walker at least a wash). There's a much better chance that the Jaguars compete in 2010 or 2011. This season, our hopes should be for 8-8. Anything else would be gravy.
Vice Presidency granted. Make sure the President gets reasonable vacation time.
Over the course of two years, I have become a big Stephen Tulloch fan. What are the chances that the Titans re-sign him considering that they apparently don't value the MLB position much (or so I have read)?
All depends on how he does this year and how much his value of himself differs from their value of him. History suggests those numbers won't match up. But I don't know how the market for him would be. I like him and think he should do well. He'll miss Albert, though.
oh I'm an idiot I didn't realize this was an AFC south chat
I voted Detroit higher than anyone else in the power rankings. I hear they love me in Michigan. Had the Lions 28th I believe. We welcome all here.
pretty thin on the AFC"S most exciting team today. what is your take on glover (with the silent v) quin. he is opening some eyes in OTA"S, and i know its only otas, but
I haven't seen him. I did talk to Frank Bush and we only touched on Glover briefly as I was focusing on the safeties. I wouldn't expect he's going to be in the top five on opening day. I will be in Houston for minicamp in mid June.
Do you ever laugh? from you picture i don't see that ever happening?
If I had a big smile in that picture, you'd be saying: "Why so goofy with that smile, don't you take anything seriously?"
Do you think Peyton Manning will be remembered as the best ever at QB? Does he need multiple rings? Does leadership matter more than stats?
One of the best. Another ring or two would certainly help, since he trails his contemporary in NE. Montana rates No. 1 to most because of the rings.
In honor of the Madden rankings being released... who would top your list of the best QB, RB, WR, TE and Defender in the AFC South?
Peyton Manning Chris Johnson Andre Johnson Dallas Clark (with Daniels closing) Mario Williams Defender is an awfully broad category, however.
If you had to pick one team to bet on this season between Houston and Jacksonville. Who would it be and why?
Head to head or better finish in division? Both I'd give edge to Houston right now.
I read Yesterday where Moore/Mudd could come back now if they pay their own taxes. Have you heard anything different?
Yeah, I hear Polian say he doesn't know, that it's all unsettled. He was on Kravitz and Eddie on the radio there. I did an entry linking to it.
Someone smarter than me is working on the linking issue. Sorry. Call this the apology chat.
Who is Mike Janecki? And what blackmail do you have on him to get him to create a facebook page called "the drive to get Paul Kuharsky more time on 104.5 the zone"???
He's a lovable character with phenomenal taste who calls in to the wildly popular morning radio show in Nashville as part of "The Goon Squad." He thanks you for the shout out. (As do I...)
No offense to you PK but its pretty sad when this is the highlight of my Thursdays.
I agree it's sad. You really need to do something about that. More a you problem than a me problem, no? I will help any way I can.
YOU REALLY THINK CHRIS JOHNSON IS A BETTER RUNNING BACK THAN ME? HANDS DOWN?
Has a better line, is on a better team, and has speed that no one else in the league may be able to match. Like you a lot too.
Do you want to join the Facebook fan group for D&D? I'm the President.
It's time to put those funny dice away.
How's my progress in camp looking? As good as CJ's last year? Can I have as good a rookie season as Dwayne Bowe 2 years ago?
There is no camp. There were three practices. You hardly did anything in two of them as you had a tight hammy.
We are receiving a high amount of traffic due to your inability to run a chat room. We ask that you close it.
You don't like traffic?
I think Caldwell could be what the Colts need to get back to a super bowl. He believes in most the same things, coaching wise, as Dungy. He seems to be more aggresive and maybe able to light a fire under their butts. If that happens, Colts will be in the super bowl this years!! Yours thoughts?
I think it's a good line of thinking, that a new fire can help. I also think it's the positive spin to put out there in a scenario like this.
Admit it, Paul. Covering the Raid-ahs was the high point of your career, wasn't it?
From 8-2 to 8-8. Commitment to mediocrity. I did get to see Vince Evans play!
Paul, I love your stuff but I am really disappointed in your VY column. I can't believe you could even compare that to pacman. That's like saying just because pacman drove a cadillac that nobody else should because it sends the wrong message. Unlike pacman, this was not a selfish act by Vince. He was not doing it for his own deranged enjoyment, nor did he slam a stripper's head onto the stage. It was more of him playing off of his celebrity status and having a good time along with everyone else there. The crowd enjoyed it. Not to mention the guy just came from a fundraising event in Houston. Give the guy a break. Peyton Manning wouldn't do that, yeah... because that's not his culture.
Why do anything that mimics Pacman? It's just not a smart choice. Why if you're having a good time would you choose to imitate a guy who killed your team's rep? I don't see how whether he was at a fundraiser or not has to influence my opinion of what he was doing right then. I understand your stance, and that a lot of people share it.
Do you see Jon Gruden coaching in Jacksonville next year?
I don't. I think if the Jags improve, Del Rio can survive. And I think Notre Dame could be after Gruden.
Sub-par chat today, Paul. Regroup next week Skipper.
Take out the link incident and re-grade?
Where do you really see us standing after the losses of our coaches Mudd,Moore...and will they have as much access on game day as consultants
No one seems to know. Consultant is the haziest term in the league right now.
I agree w/Chris, I was expecting something very different when I clicked the VY video. He has definitely made poor choices over the last few yrs, but this wasn't one of them. It's not like he was Javon Walker dousing a crowd w/champagne in Vegas.
Is that all it takes? As long as it;s not as bad as that, then it's OK?
Hey PK. With the news of Glover Quin making some plays in OTAs, what do you think the chances of him being a real hidden gym for our Texans? If he does happen to be that good, do you think it would incline the Texans to trade/release Dunta?
I think it's way, way, way early to make any judgments. "Making plays in OTAs" doesn't mean a whole lot. I've seen people look like Hall of Famers in OTAs and not make it out of camp. Even if he's great, wouldn't you want him opposite Dunta instead of replacing him? Why on earth if you can afford him would you cut him? He's yours for this year, at least. That secondary could be brutal without him.
Who's the best Jag of all-time? Taylor, Smith or Boselli?
Tough call. I think Boselli at his peak was probably the best. I think I'd vote Smith overall though.
Ok, I'll rephrase, it wasn't bad at all. We won't know anything about VY and his maturity until he shows up on the field in a pressure situation, and that may or may not happen this season, may possibly never happen in a Titan uniform. Also, I sent you an email w/Mario Williams doing the same thing at a club a couple yrs back.
Was Mario doing the same dumb thing a teammate had done as part of an incident that drew national, negative attention?
I think we need at least another 30 minutes of chat to make up for the links debacle.
We'll go til 3:30 ET.
Have you found anything about why Jennings slid into the 7th round of the draft yet?
Asked a few people and they had nothing for me. Let me get around to this minicamps.
Yes, I have a question for Tim Graham. Tim, how do you see the Bills doing this year and can I have some Zima?
Tim is locked in his basement right now and cannot accept your message. And he thought you'd believe we raced and he won?
Not counting Nashville since you live there, whats your favorite division city to visit?
Well, I like the food in Houston and the weather during the season in Jax. I think downtown Indy is underrated if you'rr on a business trip. But that's the hardest trip for me as I have to drive or connect.
Yeah, we were done 42 minutes ago, did you miss it? I am off today -- 3:30 CT.
I'll have to respectfully disagree with you on the Smith vote, Paul. Tony B. was arguably the most dominant tackle in the league when he played. The 1996 playoffs in which he shut down Bruce Smith was a thing of beauty. I will admit, however, that Smith's sudden "retirement" may taint my perception. Jimmy was great, and I don't use that term loosely, but both fans and the media failed to use a critical eye when Jimmy abruptly left football. To me it was obvious the guy didn't want to go through the public humiliation of another positive drug test.
I was talking strictly as a player, and looking at full career. Three great ones.
Me and some buddies were talking Colts in the infield at the Indy 500 on sunday, and somebody said that if Anthony Gonzalez doesn't totally blow up this year with great numbers, than he was a bust as a first round pick. I disagreed, he proved his worth in his first year when Marvin when down in my opinion. What do you think?
It would take more than one bad year for any first rounder who's done reasonably well so far to be deemed a bust. The guy can clearly play, now we see how well, where and for how long.
Dont leave at 3:30 CT... What else am I going to do at work?
Ask your boss for suggestions.
Will Tim ever slay me?
Will you ever set him on fire with your breath?
I understand the immaturity of Vince's actions, but contrary to yours and many elderly-gentlemen's (not that old, just above my generation) beliefs, Pacman did not invent "making it rain". I understand your stance as well, but do not believe it warranted its own column. Now it comes off as a personal vendetta. And the fundraiser thing is meant to show that the concert is not all this man is doing in his free time.
He didn't invent it, but he made it his. Say "Make it rain" to an average American and what will most of them say back?
Say something. Anything. I'll disagree with you. I swear.
The Yankees rule.
Prez got it right. Smith is definitely behind Boselli, probably behind Taylor. Recent news confirmed he's been battling this thing for quite some time
But where does that affect how he caught a football?
I'm projected to be the 3rd pick in fantasy by ESPN, so how am i not a top 10 madden player?
Madden is a video game that tries to put measurables into a player and fantasy is a game directly connected to your statistics.
That's a personal foul against Chris for referring to the chat host as an "elderly", 15 yards and repeat 2nd down.
As if I haven't struggled enough with being 40. I can't even link effectively any more.
You didn't write a column about VY's charity event but you sure jumped on him throwing a handful of unidentified bills into a crowd. That says alot.
First off, we need to discuss what qualifies as a column. You're using the term very loosely. I write one column a week, and that sure wasn't it. That was a blog post. I don't write columns or posts about guys doing charity events, generally. It's great that they do it, but it doesn't usually call for analysis. It's kind of like the guy who blogs about the airlines and airport doesn't do entries on each plane that lands.
Yes, you should write an article everytime a player in the afc south does a charity event, especially the back-ups! You might as well work for unitedway.org
Nick medals in this chat.
Which backup QB in the AFC South is most likely to get significant playing time?
You're asking me to predict who's going to go down with injuries, basically. How in the world would I be able to do that? Is there a fortune teller anywhere on your route home from work?
Smith abusing drugs during his career doesn't change your opinion of him as a football player but VY "making it rain" does?
I was asked which one of the three was the best player, no? Vince isn't playing currently, and that discussion was about something he did off the field. I didn't follow Smith day to day. But even if he was doing some bad and/or stupid stuff, he was playing pretty good football, no?
Paul, for the sake of the AFC South Chat Thursday (or AFCSCT for those in the know) you'll have to get the suits at ESPN to pay for VP Nathan to fly to Jacksonville in early June when you'll be here. It is critical to the socioeconomic stability of the division and the chat.
The whole backfield on the Jaguars team are filled with power backs. With a two back system is it necessary to have a speed back in the fold? What do you think of having a roster filled with just power backs?
I don;'t think it's the best constructed backfield. But if they want to be all power all the time and can make it work, more power to them.
I apologize for calling you elderly. "Seasoned" would be a better term. Anyways, what movies are you excited for this summer?
I want to see the Terminator flick, though I've heard mixed reviews. That show shouldn't be canceled. It's different and decent.
Wow, I can finally read the chat. This is gonna be great!
Congrats on the eye surgery Nick. Now it's time for the other Nick to get to those cold calls. Or make that list of AFC South charity events. Thanks for coming. Friend "Paul Kuharsky Espn" on facebook. I won't dare try to link it again. Hit the mailbag anytime. See you in a week I hope...
MJD a powerback? Umm, have you seen all his long td runs. Amateur.
In a combo with Taylor he was. Doesn't mean he can't run. He's more of a power guy than Johnson or Slaton, no? I certain think he's more durable than they will be.