Happy Super Bowl week! Let's chat.
What does your gut instinct tell you where Julius Peppers will play next season?
Well, it is just a gut - I'd say the Atlanta Falcons are a team to watch. Their owner, Arthur Blank, is very focused on a Super Bowl and a stud defensive end would fill a huge need. I'd say watch out for the Broncos, too. Who knows, maybe Dan Snyder will top himself and add him to the D-line with Albert Haynesworth.
Let's get this out the way. Who's your pick to win the SB and why are you picking them?
I am picking the Colts, something like 37-31. But I don't see this as an automatic coronation of Peyton Manning and the Colts, especially with Dwight Freeney out or limited. This Saints team is talented and the Ravens
Do you see the Cowboys trading up on draft day? Maybe for a Taylor Mays?
Ugh. No. Taylor Mays is almost like Roy Williams (the safety). Physical, yes, but stiff. And Jerry Jones is usually more inclined to trading down. I see see them beefing up their offensive line and also targeting a dynamic slot receiver - a Wes Welker or DeSean Jackson/Jeremy Maclin type. Then the safety.
National Signing day has been historically the week after the superbowl, with the SB now being played in February, should they coordinate and move it back a week so these kids get full football attention?
It's a great day for those colleges and high school kids and I really believe signing day garners its own large audience and attention. And these things will never be coordinated like that. Now if the league expands the season to 17 or 18 games, the Super Bowl will be later, that's for sure.
The Steelers want to return to their roots next season and run the ball more.Do you think Ben will have a problem with this?
I will see it when I believe it. There was a front office sentiment to get back to more rushing the ball but Ben campaigned hard to keep OC Bruce Arians; they have dynamic receivers...and, oh, as Hines Ward told me, the guy with $100 million contract carries a lot of weight.
Do you think that without a salary cap we see a free agent signing that tops Albert Haynesworth?
I would say Peppers has a chance to top Haynesworth.
With Dwight Freeney banged up and the offenses expected to thrive on Sunday, are there any defensive players that can realistically make an impact?
For the Colts, I'd say watch DEs Robert Mathis & Raheem Brock, LB Gary Brackett and S Antoine Bethea.
Mort, Peyton's success has garnered much talk about the best QB of all time. From someone who has been around the game for decades. In no particular order, who are the greatest 5 QBs of all time?
Kev, I have a difficult time because different eras, different schemes, rules, etc. In no particular order, I've been talking John Elway, Joe Montana, Johnny Unitas, Dan Marino & Otto Graham.
When the Dolphins cut Porter, would any team want hiim for $5M and guaranteed starter?
There's an old adage: It only takes one team so I will say "probably" especially in a restricted free agent market.
Chris, if The Skins don't go QB in Round 1, are there any other QB's that Shanahan will pursue either via FA or trades?
Personally, I see the Redskins keeping Jason Campbell on for at least a year and drafting one, most likely Sam Bradford. If they pass on a QB - and Bradford could always go No. 1 to the Rams - then I could see them taking an OT and drafting a QB in the 2nd round. Others? Not sure, which is why Campbell is important in this picture.
Do you see the Cowboys staying with the current three headed running attack or do you see one of the backs possibly being traded? And if one is traded which one would give Dallas the best value?
I doubt the Cowboys trade one of the backs but there's no doubt Felix Jones' role will grow. I would say Marion Barber could bring something of value on the market (wonder if Parcells would like him if Ronnie Brown is not in the picture since he drafted Barber); however, we're not talking about any super high draft picks.
Mort-Do you think all the Donovan McNabb crap is just that? I don't think he is going anywhere for the time being.
I'm with you but I must admit that I'm not going to sleep on it. With 1 year left on his contract, I wouldn't be surprised if the Eagles seriously listened if someone like the Vikings offered a big-time package. But why help a team in your own conference that has the same realistic Super Bowl aspirations?
alot of people have elway as number 1 or 2 all time qb, i didnt know he had lost 3 superbowls before winning 2. do those 3 losses tarnish his legacy?
No, for those who really remember, Elway was credited with carrying three fairly mediocre teams to those Super Bowls he lost. Very few, if any QBs, could have taken those teams to the Super Bowl. Elway's ability at his peak - arm strength, competitiveness and mobility - would have played well in any era.
The NFL stated that the play Favre injured his ankle against the Saints should have been called a personal foul, with Vikings possession on the 19. How did he refs miss such a significant call? And when, if ever, is the offense so egregiuos that it requires the game or part of it to be replayed?
On the latter part of your question - and I will try to respectfully say this - your suggestion is more outragaeous than the bad non-call by the officials. That's football. Even if the penalty were called, we don't know if it would have changed the outcome of the game and certainly not the injury.
Hi Mort, do you like the hiring of Hue Jackson in Oakland? Of course anything is an imrovement, but do you see him making any impact with Russell and the Raiders offense?
I don't know how much Hue Jackson will help Jamarcus Russell but I think he's a very, very good hire. He's a darn, good coach and has worked with some outstanding offensive-minded coaches, including Bobby Petrino and Cam Cameron.
Mort what is the best personal performance you have seen by either an offense or a defense in a super bowl?
Two performances stick out in my mind and, ironically, both by defensive units - the '85 Bears and the 2000 Ravens. And, I personally believe that the 2000 Ravens had the best defense ever. The Bears defense was tremendous but it was so novel nobody had an answer for it at the time. The Ravens' defense would have been dominant without smoke and mirrors.
Hey Mort, tell Jason in Atlanta that the #1 all time QB question starts and ends with Joe Montana. He didn't play as long as Elway and didn't get the chance to pass as much as Manning and Favre, but I'll take the completion percentage, yards per attempt, TD to Int Ratio, Oh, and the 11 TDs 0 Ints, 4 Rings, the greatest drive in SB history and 3 MVPs in 4 Super Bowl appearances over any anyone else!!!!! The sad thing is, I shouldn't have to write this!!!!
Rich, you make a very good point. I know a lot of football people who have high praise for Montana but believe we would have had a different story if he did not come into the league when Bill Walsh was hitting his stride as an offensive genius. But is that Montana's fault? Nope. So, duly noted.
Do you think Jerry Rice is the greatest NFL player of all time. I'm 36 and he is the best I've seen but it's hard for me to believe he is better than Jim Brown.
I know a lot of people who believe Jim Brown is the greatest but put Jerry Rice way up there. I would still say take the greatest QBs ever and throw them in that mix, along with Lawrence Taylor and Reggie White...and maybe Deacon Jones. And I'm positive I just left somebody out.
Follow up on the Cowboys question ...... "and also targeting a dynamic slot receiver" ... you think Jordan Shipley fits the bill?
That's a pretty good name. I also wonder if a guy like Ole Miss RB Dexter McCluster fits the bill. A lot of scouts believe he can make that transition because he has excellent hands.
OK, I have an assignment to run to but thanks for the time. We'll have a post-Super Bowl chat next week. I will get active on Twitter.com @mortreport, as well. We're on TV & radio the rest of the week and Sunday NFL Countdown at 11 am ET may be our best ever. Take care and God Bless!