The “click clack” of the cleats, the smell of sweat and body odor, and the sight of rookies carrying drenched pads can only mean one thing. Training camp has commenced and football is right around the corner. Training camp is the time for players to compete for a spot on a roster that is cut down to 53 by the end of the preseason. Even though this training camp has followed the mold, it seems to have brought on a little extra un-needed clay of drama and controversy.
The biggest story during this NFL training camp seem to be the problems surrounding Washington Redskins defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth. Pre-training camp, Albert Haynesworth was displeased with his team’s decision to switch to a new defensive scheme (3-4 defense). Haynesworth would play nose tackle, instead of playing the 4-3 position of defensive tackle. After long discussions with new head coach Mike Shanahan, Haynesworth agreed to join the team in training camp and participate in drills.
The only problem with Haynesworth joining the team for drills was his inability to pass the mandatory conditioning test. The first two times Haynesworth took the conditioning test, he failed. His third try was cut short due to a problem with his right knee. It took until August 7th for Haynesworth to pass the team’s mandatory physical conditioning test. Haynesworth now must catch up on practice with his team after missing 14 team practices during this conundrum.
A story that might rival the drama circulating around Albert Haynesworth may be the drama that is surrounding New York Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis. Revis is not only known for his skill and speed at the cornerback position, he is also known for successfully defending top-notch wide receivers such as Chad Ochocinco, Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Marques Colston, and Andre Johns. Due to the recent success of the Jets cornerback, Revis is looking to sign a new contract that would make him the highest paid cornerback in the league, something that many football fans, in and outside of New York, feels he deserves. The Jets may need to make Revis happy because without him, their defense may not the “Number One” defense they were last year.
The number one song on Brett Favre’s iPod must be Should I Stay or Should I Go by the Clash because it seems to be the discussion every year that we have on his behalf. Only Brett Favre knows if Brett Favre will play another season in the National Football League.
The saga began as Favre underwent ankle surgery after the 2009 NFL Championship game against the New Orleans Saints. He told the Minnesota Vikings that he did not know if he was going to return for another season. But as we all know, Whenever Favre says something, you can always assume that he may flip-flop on the decision a few weeks later. After throwing passes to Oak Grove High School students in mid-June, speculations were made that he may return. Weeks later he explained that he was contemplating on returning the play another season but was not sure.
Last week, reports came out that Favre was saying retired, but Coach Brad Childress said he wanted to hear it from the “horse’s mouth.” Favre later added that if he is completely healthy going into the season, then he would play quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings for yet another year. Sears may have something because Brett seems to just as indecisive about choosing televisions as he is about continuing his NFL career.
The final issue occurring in training camp this year is the dreaded injuries. Last year, Philadelphia Eagles middle linebacker Stuart Bradley tore his ACL in training camp, ending his season. The Philadelphia Eagles are already experiencing troubles with injuries as wide receivers Desean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin have suffered minor injuries.
The Denver Broncos have been hit by injuries so far in this training camp, losing running backs Knoshown Moreno and Correll Buckhalter. Things got worse for the Broncos, hearing that during drills on August 5th, they would lose Pro-Bowl Linebacker Elvis Dumervil for four months, most likely taking him out of action for the season.
The injury bug bit yet again as Cowboys defensive end Marcus Spears will likely be out 4-6 weeks with a sprained left knee. Things just do not seem to get any easier as training camp rolls along. The NFL preseason begins in about a week, and everyone is excited for football season to start up. With new quarterbacks, new wide-receiver duos, and new stadiums, there is NO way that this season will disappoint!