|Tim Hasselbeck on D&C: NFL PED cheaters like Rodney Harrison ‘should be treated differently than guys that did it the right way’||01.05.16 at 10:23 am ET|
ESPN NFL analyst Tim Hasselbeck, making his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Tuesday, weighed in on the Peyton Manning HGH controversy and the questionable handling of the story by his network. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
ESPN has been criticized for its widespread dismissal of the Al Jazeera report suggesting a link between Manning and HGH from an Indianapolis anti-aging institute he visited while recovering from his neck injury a few years ago.
“I think there’s probably been some skepticism in terms of the validity of it all, especially with the [Al Jazeera] network basically saying we’ve never alleged that Peyton Manning took HGH,” Hasselbeck said. “So that’s obviously a big leap to say that, hey, this stuff is going to his house [but] we’re not alleging that he took it. Like, that right there I think is a massive sticking point for many people, and understandably so, from that standpoint. So I think that’s really been the reason for it.”
Added Hasselbeck: “I don’t think that ESPN should be in the business of responding to an Al Jazeera report where they themselves are saying we are not alleging that Peyton Manning took HGH. That’s the leap, guys.”
Hasselbeck said the issue of performance-enhancing drugs in football goes well beyond Manning.
“Rodney Harrison, who you guys are going to have on your station today, Rodney Harrison admits to taking HGH for two years. For two years. So we’re just going to believe him that it was just two years when the guy played for over 13 years? How long did Rodney play for, 15 years? Something like that. So, hey, guys, you busted me, I’ve been doing it for two years. What? Has it been eight years or has it been two years? What’s it been? I guess that’s part of what’s happened here with this.”
Hasselbeck said he “never even thought about doing” performance-enhancing drugs during his own playing career despite his physical limitations, and he doesn’t like that other players have gained an advantage from it.
“I hate the fact that guys would cheat the system. Hate it,” he said. And I think that guys that have cheated the system should absolutely be punished, they should have an asterisk next to their name, and quite honestly they should be treated differently than guys that did it the right way. So if that’s the case with Peyton Manning, that’s how I hope he gets treated. And that’s how I hope Rodney Harrison gets treated, to be honest with you. And Robert Mathis. And everybody else who’s cheated. That’s how I feel about it.
“You’re asking me should it be looked into? Heck, yeah, it should be looked into. And they should get as much information on everybody that’s done it.”
|Gregg Doyel on D&C: ‘Totally believe’ Andrew Luck playing through broken ribs||11.03.15 at 10:13 am ET|
Indianapolis Star columnist Gregg Doyel joined Dennis & Callahan Tuesday morning to discuss the Colts, specifically Andrew Luck and his reported fractured ribs. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Over the weekend it was reported by FOX Sports that Luck has been playing through fractured ribs since Week 3. Both Luck and Colts head coach Chuck Pagano didn’t address the matter following Monday night’s loss to the Panthers.
Doyel believes Luck has been playing with fractured ribs.
“Based on Luck’s answer and even Pagano’s answer because Pagano wouldn’t deny it either, I totally believe he’s been playing through broken ribs,” Doyel said. “I totally believe that.”
Luck’s reported injury was never listed on the injury report. Many have wondered if the league would look into the matter, as it interferes with the integrity of the game. Doyel wouldn’t compare it to Tom Brady and the Deflategate matter.
“Think about what I am going to say to you: All cheating, all rules-breaking, all law-breaking, whatever we’re talking about is not equal,” Doyel said. “In other words, if you jaywalk that’s not as bad as robbing a bank.”
“There’s no question about that, but is that anywhere near the level of doctoring a football in the game before the Super Bowl?” he added when pressed about the Colts not listing the injury on the injury report.
The Colts are currently 3-5 on the season, a year after they reached the AFC title game. Doyel discussed who in the Colts organization is to blame for their poor start.
“First of all, I’m not sure we can blame Luck’s injury for all his numbers,” he said. “He was bad in Weeks 1 and 2 against Buffalo and the Jets. Bad. As far as we know, he was hurt in Game 3 against the Titans. He was bad anyway. He was bad in those games because the offensive line was horrible. He took a beating, was on the run and was just horrible.
“I thought all along that the guy to credit the most for the way the Colts went from 2-14 to 11-5 three years in a row — if you’re going to rank them in order, Luck deserves the most credit for the rise, if you’re going to rank among Luck, [Ryan] Grigson and Pagano the coach. If you rank them them in order for who deserves the most blame — Grigson. Everybody knew the Colts offensive line, no good. The defensive line, no good and this offseason he did very little to improve either one. So if you have to blame somebody first, he gets the blame first, but there is a lot to go around.”
Doyel also floated out the idea that Peyton Manning could become the Colts’ general manager if he were to retire following the season.
“One thing that will be really interesting around here is if Peyton Manning retires after this year. What if he does and what if the Colts need a GM? What if Peyton Manning becomes the Colts’ John Elway? That makes a lot of sense to me,” he said. “We will see.”
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|Matthew Slater downplays Deflategate revenge against Indy: ‘We’re playing the Colts, not anything else’||10.11.15 at 10:50 pm ET|
ARLINGTON, Texas — As soon as Sunday’s 30-6 dispatch of the injury-depleted Cowboys was in the books and just before the team plane headed back to New England, the questions began.
How much will the Patriots be juiced up this week to play the Colts after their general manager Ryan Grigson lit a match and started the Deflategate inferno?
“I don’t think that’s going to factor in for us as players,” Matthew Slater said. “It’s a good football team. We respect them as opponents. We respect the players they have over there and what they’ve been able to accomplish and we just have to get ready for the game. We’re playing the Colts. We’re not playing anything else.”
The Colts come into the game with a 3-2 record but have a quarterback in Andrew Luck that has missed the last two games with a shoulder injury. The Colts have denied that he has a separated shoulder. The Colts rescued the last two games against Jacksonville and Houston behind backup Matt Hasselbeck. But now the competition increases exponentially with Tom Brady and the 4-0 Patriots coming to town next Sunday night.
Still, Slater managed to sound a very respectful tone in the locker room after.
“It’s a huge game but we’re going to enjoy today, enjoy the win and then our focus will shift to next week,” Slater said. “It’s got to be the same way it always is, it’s one day at a time, preparation and doing what you can to get ready for your opponent. The games aren’t won on Sunday. The games are won throughout the course of the week.”
As for Tom Brady and his approach Sunday, Slater was in awe.
“He’s a warrior, he’s a warrior,” Slater said, referring to the numerous hits he took from Greg Hardy and the Dallas defense Sunday. “It’s not easy to stand back there and just have guys tag off on you sometimes. But he does and he gets up time after time. He’s such a tough guy and it speaks volumes to who he is as a person.
“I can’t really say it’s anything different. Tom’s approach has always been the same, the way he respects every opponent that we play against and his preparation. There’s one thing I’ve learned in eight years of being his teammate, you’re never surprised with what he’s able to do. He puts the work in and he definitely earns all of the success that he has on Sundays throughout the course of the week.”
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|Adam Schefter on OM&F: ‘Little crazy’ to compare 2015 Patriots to 2007||09.24.15 at 1:54 pm ET|
ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter checked in with Ordway, Merloni & Fauria on Thursday to discuss all things NFL, specifically the Patriots and comparing this year’s Patriots team to the 2007 team. To hear the interview, go to the OM&F audio on demand page.
The Patriots have started the season 2-0 and Tom Brady has put up better numbers than he did through the first two games of the historic 2007 season. With that being said, Schefter said it’s too soon to compare the two teams.
“I think that it is a little crazy to compare right now,” Schefter said. “That 2007 team was so dominant and so good for so long. I mean, 16-0 in the regular season and then it seemed to run out of gas at the end of the season and into the postseason and wasn’t as dominant, nearly as dominant as earlier in the year was. They put 51 or 52 on Tennessee, I remember, a 50 burger against the Washington Redskins around Halloween I believe it was. I understand why you want to make those points and draw those parallels, but to me they are two different years and it is just a little early to do that.
“Do I think this Patriots team is PO’d? Yeah. Do I think they are playing with a chip on their shoulder? Yeah. Do I think they they have some offensive talent and major players? Yeah. All those things are true, but again, we’re two games into that. That Patriots team from 2007 was running away from every team. Now, if this game on Sunday turns into a blowout and it continues longer, then I think you’ll be comparing it more and more. I understand why you’re doing it, but it’s just too early for me to do doing that.”
Schefter was asked if media members have inquired to the league about randomly measuring PSI in footballs in games this season. He said people just want to move on from the subject.
“I frankly think that everybody is so over this idea and so past it and we’re so on to 2015,” Schefter said. “I can only speak for myself, I can’t speak for other media members — will we at some point inquire about numbers? I am sure it will come up in a topic. Do you think that if we have on “Sunday Insiders” this Sunday something about it with what the air pressure in balls that people care — that’s a real quick way to get people to turn off right now. I don’t think people care. We’re moving on.”
|Bob Kravitz on D&C: Tom Brady has ‘acted like a guilty person’||08.13.15 at 10:20 am ET|
Columnist Bob Kravitz of WTHR-TV in Indianapolis, the writer who broke the Deflategate story, checked in with the Dennis & Callahan show on Thursday to discuss the latest in the case after it was heard before Judge Richard Berman in New York on Wednesday. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Kravitz was surprised the public portion of the meeting Wednesday centered so much around the Wells Report.
“It’s hard to read where this judge is headed because I really thought this was going to be a process oriented hearing and instead they seemed at least based on the first meeting, they seemed to be revisiting the whole Wells Report, which really isn’t what he was charged to do,” he said. “He’s got the right to do that certainly. He may come out next Wednesday if they don’t reach a settlement and come hard after the NFLPA and [Tom] Brady. You just don’t know. He’s playing devils advocate.”
Looking at the Wells Report, Kravitz feels it didn’t do a good enough job of connecting the deflated footballs to Tom Brady, but did say the quarterback is acting like he’s guilty.
“I do think the Wells Report, if you look at it closely, I think it did a really good job of establishing the balls were deflated, that human tampering was involved,” he said. “I think where they came up short was in their effort to pin it on Brady. I think that there is some evidence. I think he’s acted like a guilty person, but I don’t know that there’s been a preponderance of evidence. That’s what is required in a situation like this.”
“If he had come out early and said, ‘Look, we weren’t trying to do any funny business, it kind of happened that way. We made it low. Maybe we stepped over the line a little bit, it was not intentional. My bad. It won’t happen again.’ I think this thing would have been over in about 10 minutes,” he added. “I really do.”
In the end, he predicts Brady will end up taking a one or two game suspension with no admission of guilt, but accepting a suspension for a lack of cooperation.
“If I was Brady I would probably disincline to accept much of anything, but I think his lawyers have to be smart and understand the NFL is pretty dug in and the NFL needs to save face … ,” Kravitz said. “I personally think in the end one or two games, no admission of guilt and those one or two games would be for a perceived lack of corporation.”
Here are more highlights from the conversation. For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.
|Ted Wells: No one at NFL initially took Colts’ complaints about underinflated footballs seriously||05.12.15 at 4:44 pm ET|
According to Ted Wells, the league did not try and run a sting at the expense of the Patriots when it came to Deflategate. Instead, he said Tuesday that the league didn’t intentionally wait until halftime to catch the Patriots allegedly tampering with game balls. Instead, Wells acknowledged that the NFL thought very little about the complaint submitted by Indy GM Ryan Grigson before the game.
“When the Colts made the complaint, no one at the league office took the complaint seriously,” Wells said in a conference call with the media Tuesday afternoon. “They flipped the complaint to the operations people so they knew about it. They told the refs. Walt Anderson thought it was just a normal complaint. You get these types of complaints all the time. Nobody paid that much attention to it.
“There was no sting operation.”
According to the Wells Report, attached to Grigson’s initial e-mail regarding the complaint was a message from Colts Equipment Manager Sean Sullivan, who said, “it is well known around the league that after the Patriots gameballs are checked by the officials and brought out for game usage the ballboys for the patriots will let out some air with a ball needle because their quarterback likes a smaller football so he can grip it better, it would be great if someone would be able to check the air in the game balls as the game goes on so that they don’t get an illegal advantage.”
|Jim Irsay not surprised Deflategate probe has taken this long||04.26.15 at 9:15 pm ET|
This week will mark the 100-day mark since Indy GM Ryan Grigson griped to the NFL about the air pressure in the footballs in the AFC title game against the Patriots, sparking Deflategate.
In the wake of the uproar, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell appointed Ted Wells as a special investigator to look into the matter, but there’s been no new updates on the situation since the Super Bowl. Goodell told reporters on Friday that Wells has not been given a timeline as to when he needs to complete his probe.
One guy who isn’t surprised that the Deflategate investigation has taken this long is Colts owner Jim Irsay. Speaking with reporters on Friday, Irsay said Wells is a “very thorough investigator” who is going to do his due diligence when it comes to getting to the bottom of what happened.
“I know that they are still finishing up their investigation, and there’s really nothing new to report,” Irsay told reporters on Friday. “It could be a few days, it could be a month or more. I really don’t know. They’re working to be, again, comprehensive and thorough, and when Wells gets done with it, he’ll let us all know.
“He’s going to do what he thinks — sort of in his vacuum, so to speak. He’s not concerned about when he gets the results, how long it takes. He wants to be thorough. So I know he operates that way. So it’s not a shock, but I think everyone has wondered exactly when he’ll come through and let us know what he’s learned.”
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
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