Reality: 34 of America’s 35 most-watched fall TV shows were NFL games.
Perception: An NFL game was the most watched TV “show” of the week all 17 weeks of the regular season. It really makes me believe that the NFL will add more wild card games next season for the simple reason that it means money, and America just can’t get enough football. I mean think about it. Game 7s are supposed to be the biggest thing in sports, yet a Broncos-Chiefs regular season game got higher ratings than Game 7 of the NBA Finals. That is astounding!
Reality: The last three Super Bowl champions won 10 or fewer games in the regular season.
Perception: Other unique stats about recent Super Bowl champions…
- Over the last four seasons, the team that the Eagles have played in their home opener has gone on to win the Super Bowl. Furthermore, the last six Super Bowl champions all played in Philadelphia during the season they won the big game.
- The last 2 champs lost in Washington to the Redskins.
The San Diego Chargers can actually extend each of those streaks. They had only nine regular season wins. They lost in Philly in Week 2, the Eagles home opener. And they lost in Washington in Week 9.
Reality: The Ravens coaching staff will look different in 2014.
Perception: Running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery has already been let go. Juan Castillo had his title changed from run-game coordinator to offensive line coach. The offensive Line Coach since 2008 had been Andy Moeller. Either he or Todd Washington, the assistant offensive line coach, might be headed to LSU as the offensive line coach. If one of them goes, they would be joining LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron there, who was the Ravens offensive coordinator for five seasons. So changes are coming to the Ravens coaching staff. Jim Caldwell might be another.
Reality: Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell interviewed for head coaching gigs with the Lions, Redskins, and Titans.
Perception: The Redskins hired Jay Gruden as their head coach, and it appears that it’s Ken Whisenhunt’s job to lose in Detroit. The front-runner for the Titans job is the Seahawks defensive coordinator, Dan Quinn. Caldwell, Mike Zimmer, and Whisenhunt are also under consideration in Tennessee. However, I’m beginning to think that Caldwell really was just a “Rooney Rule” interview with these teams. The “Rooney Rule” requires that an NFL team at least interview a minority candidate for their coaching position. I don’t see Caldwell getting the Lions or Titans job, which means that John Harbaugh might have to decide if he really wants Caldwell back with the Ravens next season.
Reality: Ozzie Newsome said the Ravens will be active in free agency and that they have identified the type of WR they want and they will get that receiver.
Perception: Could a reunion with Anquan Boldin be in the works? I mean who else defines that type of receiver the Ravens are looking for more than Boldin? And he is a free agent. But then again, I’m just dreaming for all you Ravens fans.
So who could Newsome really be looking at? He said with such determination that they will indeed get that receiver they want. Some free agents would be Boldin, Eric Decker, Julian Edelman, Hakeem Nicks, and James Jones. Or Newsome could be meaning a wide receiver in the draft fits their needs, and they have been linked in Mock Drafts to Mike Evans of Texas A&M… but is developing a rookie really going to help this team in 2014? I have no problem drafting one, but I don’t believe that’s what Newsome meant when he said they have identified the type of receiver they want and they will get him. So it’ll be interesting to see what rumors start swirling around about this.