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Peter King: MMQB - 6/9/14

Discussion in 'RAMS - NFL TALK' started by Prime Time, Jun 9, 2014.

  1. Prime Time RODerator

    Feb 9, 2014
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    Nam Y. Huh/AP

    Chicago Takes Charge
    Bears coach Marc Trestman and quarterback Jay Cutler are taking the lead in establishing an ethical culture in Chicago's locker room. Plus, a new Dr. Z award, 10 things I think and my annual Father's Day book recommendations
    By Peter King

    SALISBURY, N.C. — Notes from the last pre-vacation MMQB—including Marc Trestman the people person, Jay Cutler the leader, and the first annual “Paul ‘Dr. Z’ Awards” by the Pro Football Writers of America—on the eve of tonight’s 55th annual National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Awards ceremony in this real-life Mayberry.

    As is our usual custom, we’ll have replacement “Monday Morning Quarterback” columnists for four of the next five weeks. San Francisco tight end Vernon Davis will write one, and Chicago coach Marc Trestman will write another to kick off our Canada Week festivities; Trestman, as noted above, coached the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes for five years before taking over the Bears last year. Oakland first-round pick, Khalil Mack, is slated to write another one of the MMQBs, with Rich Eisen of NFL Network rounding out the fearsome foursome. Looking forward to reading what they’ve got to say.

    Read entire article at the link.


    Howard Mudd, an assistant coach in the NFL for 39 years, is one of four recipients of the inaugural Paul “Dr. Z” Zimmerman awards. (Damian Strohmeyer/AP)

    The inaugural Dr. Z Awards are announced.

    The Pro Football Writers of America gives out awards annually to deserving players and executives in the NFL, and this year our group is adding an award to recognize assistant coaches. It’s long past time that career assistants, who don’t make the Hall of Fame and most often work deep in the shadows of their head coaches, are memorialized for what they do.

    The inaugural class of four winners:

    • Howard Mudd, who worked for 39 years as an NFL offensive line coach with eight teams.
    • The late Fritz Shurmur, a veteran of 24 years as an NFL coach, 20 of them as a defensive coordinator.
    • Ernie Zampese, a 24-year NFL assistant and one of the architects of the modern passing game.
    • The late Jim Johnson, a master of the disguised blitz, a 23-year assistant and defensive coordinator.
    Fritz Shurmur, a college center at Albion (Mich.) College, broke into the NFL in 1975 with Detroit as defensive line coach, after four seasons as Wyoming’s head coach. He was defensive coordinator for Detroit, New England (breaking in Bill Parcells to the NFL in 1980), the Rams, the Cardinals and Packers before dying in 1999 at 67 of liver cancer. In 1996 his Green Bay defense stifled San Francisco, Carolina and New England—holding them to an average of 16 points—in the Packers’ Super Bowl run.

    He was best known for his defensive adjustments. In 1989 he invented a 2-5 defensive front with the Rams when injuries ravaged the front, using different combinations of safeties and linebackers in the middle. He often used a “big nickel” package, with safeties playing a more prominent role in coverage and nickel rushes instead of corners.

    “Fritz was one of the first to employ a nickel on a full-time basis,” Parcells said Saturday. “He was creative in many ways, one of the coaches who really knew how to fit the talent he had to the best scheme for them. And he was a tremendous defensive line coach. Tremendous. Very demanding. Those defensive linemen, he was on their ass. When I got to New England in 1980, Fritz taught me to two-gap. I just think he’s one of the best I’ve seen in the business, and he was very important to my career.” Ask Barry Sanders about Fritz Shurmur: In a 1994 playoff game against Shurmur’s Packers, Sanders was held to -1 yard on 13 carries.

    Michael Sam is wearing No. 96 as he competes for a roster spot on the Rams’ defensive line. (Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)


    “They respect me as a human being, and as a football player. All the older guys, all the older vets, are showing me the ropes so I can see how the program is run. Chris [Long] is a great mentor. So is Robert Quinn. I’m telling you, they get after it. I’ve got to compete. I’ve got to step my game up to compete with this defensive line. I thought our defensive line at Mizzou was pretty tough. This is a whole new level—the speed, the strength, the everything.”

    —St. Louis seventh-round defensive end Michael Sam, on his fellow defensive linemen, after one of his first on-field practices Friday with the Rams, to a group of about a dozen media people in St. Louis.
    “I talk to those two guys all the time. Every time I hear something that drives me crazy, I say, ‘Sorry George. Sorry Vince.’ I say that probably 20 times a day. There’s s— going on now that those two would roll over in their graves about.”

    —John Madden, nodding at a photo of Vince Lombardi and George Halas behind the desk in his office in Pleasanton, Calif., in an interview with Dan Pompei of Sports on Earth.

    “We are going to be running back by committee,’’ Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell declared the other day, praising the backup to Marshawn Lynch, second-year back Christine Michael thusly: “He has breakaway speed and power behind his pads.”

    Perhaps. But Michael’s record is, at best, spotty. His 2011 season at Texas A&M ended with a torn ACL, his 2012 season was truncated because he had trouble in the A&M spread offense, and his rookie year in Seattle was plagued by poor blocking; he carried only 18 times as a rookie.

    The stat: In his past three seasons, two in college and one in the NFL, Michael has a total of 255 carries.

    In his past three seasons, Marshawn Lynch has 285, 315 and 301 carries, respectively—more each season than Michael had in his past three combined.
    I think the biggest reason to like Colin Kaepernick’s contract—if you’re a fan, if you’re the team, and if you’re a competitive player who thinks nothing should be handed to him—is that he’ll get very rich if he’s a good-to-great NFL quarterback over the next six years. If he’s just okay, or he slumps over the next two or three years, the Niners can get out from under an onerous deal and start over at the position without being weighed down by Kaepernick guarantees.
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