2002-01-19 / Sports

Ode to the A-To Everything,Turn, Turn,Turn

By Elio Velez

Ode to the A: To Everything, Turn, Turn, Turn
By Elio Velez

The Jets season is over. Finished. Kaput. Their loss in Oakland showed many of the things they did right and did wrong this season. People only remember the losses and not the good things. RB Curtis Martin was second in the league in rushing; DE John Abraham made the Pro Bowl; and the offensive line gave up the fewest sacks for a team this season.

The bad though overshadows the Jets. The defense, which was shaky this year, finally blew up. Marcus Coleman and Damien Robertson from the secondary were awful and cannot be brought back next year. The Jets lacked a pass rush when Abraham fell sick in the playoff game. Their inability to stop the run (example of when Charlie Garner with less than 2 minutes left ran 80 yards to seal the game) must be answered. What to do with the linebacking corps? Who comes back? Who goes?

Herman Edwards, who did a good job coaching this year, along with GM Terry Bradway, must find answers fast. They must contend with being 17 million over the salary cap. The first question that must be addressed is if Vinny Testaverde is coming back. If he does, they will contend. If he does not, the Jets basically are saying they are rebuilding.

After all that, guess what other problem looms on the horizon and by my next article should be a done deal?

THE TUNA RETURNS!!!

Don't believe for one second that Bill Parcells will not take many of his former Jets' players, coaches and management with him to Tampa Bay. It's a given he will hire Jets Assistant GM Mike Tannebaum, who is a wizard with dealing with the salary cap issues that is vital for managing an NFL team in this era. How about Vinny going back to Tampa for one last ride with King Bill. Maybe he signs free agent to be Jason Fabini or takes Mo Lewis or Marvin Jones, who might be salary cap casualties.

Parcells will sure bring a lot of rumors out in Hofstra on who stays or goes. The offseason is shaping to be chock full of stories, misinformation and drama. At least once every week, major events will happen that fans must keep an eye on.

Before I get off the football topic, I was 3 of 3 in playoff picks last week. I didn't pick the Jets game on purpose. I was off on the scores. Well, I'm no handicapper. This weekend, the matchups are outstanding; so let's get to it.

Philly vs Chicago: Donovan McNabb leads the Eagles into cold and windy Solder Field. This will be a tight game and I will give the slight, slight edge to the Bears at home. I'm picking the Bears but I won't be shocked if the Eagles win. It's a pick 'em game. Bears 20, Eagles 17.

St. Louis vs. Green Bay: I relish watching this game to see the two best quarterbacks in the game in Warner and Favre battle it out. Two smart offenses and improved defenses make this the playoff game of the weekend. The Pack is good but the fast track of the St. Louis Dome gives the Rams the offensive edge. When the Rams get going on offense, no one can stop them. I pick the Rams 35, Packers 28. (P.S. The score though could get higher.)

Oakland vs. New England: My question to the NFL is on why did you start this game at 8 p.m. on Saturday night in sub freezing temps in Foxboro? This game could get ugly like the weather might be. Anyways, Oakland is coming off a big win but New England is on a mission this year to prove people wrong. I'll jump on the bandwagon at least for one more week. Patriots 24, Raiders 20.

Baltimore vs. Pittsburgh. This will be a game where both defenses play nasty and go after you like you had meat tied to your body. Both offenses don't score much, but Kordell is playing way better than Grbac so I'm picking the Steel Curtain to pull this game out. Barely. Pittsburgh 17, Baltimore 14.

Other thoughts:

I was disgusted by the three game suspension handed out to Shaquille O' Neal for basically trying to sucker punch Bulls' Brad Miller in the head. O'Neal intended to hit him and if he didn't miss, Miller would be eating food through a tube in his mouth for a few months. He should have received 10 games and his reason of disrespect caused to him by the Bulls is as lame as watching his movies "Steel" and "Kazaam." Oh that's right, no one watched it.

I respected Rudy Giuliani throughout his run as mayor, but his shady deals with the Yankees and Mets' new stadiums deal is making me ill. His last minute power play into giving Steinbrenner his new palatial home was ridiculous. Bloomberg was right in dumping this deal until at least next year. Yankee Stadium is fine, Shea Stadium isn't. That stadium has got to go. It's getting ugly real fast.

I hope the new Arverne by the Sea Project gets off the ground. The community needs the deal to go through. I hope that the project concentrates as well on recreational activities for the kids and the young adults that would live there. Also, the project must be able to connect with the local schools and community organizations to bring a well-managed and positive environment. See you next week, Peace!


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