Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Tuesday Morning News



The Raiders may have moved to Oakland, and the Los Angeles Rams may have folded but the Southern California rivalry has manifest itself into the Dodgers (Raiders) and Angels (Rams) rivalry. Although some might argue that this weekend's rivalry was really between the Angels and Jayson Werth, who drove in all four runs for the Dodgers during the weekend set.

You had to figure that Dodgers manager Jim Tracy wanted to turn his circus of a baseball club into a Bugs Bunny cartoon.

At first base, Jayson Werth
At second base, Jayson Werth
At third base, Jayson Werth
And so on ...

The Dodgers offensive production would probably receive a boost if it was matched up against the Raiders defense. And pity the poor Raiders/Dodgers fans; they were so starved for something to heckle by the weekend's conclusion, many of their fans turned on the walking vendors in the stadium. But even that seemed half-hearted, a lot like the Dodgers effort. In a way it was disheartening. Being beaten down usually brings out the best in the delusional Raiders/Dodgers fans, who can spin doctor a loss better than Karl Rove.

But this weekend was nothing. The Angels were so overwhelming on the field, it seemed like the Eric Dickerson days had returned to Anaheim. But don't worry Raiders fans; the Dodgers disappointment will help prepare you for the Kerry Collins era in Oakland.

NOTES FROM AROUND THE LEAGUE

Freddie Mitchell has found a home in Kansas City, meaning that Dick Vermeil's retirement will likely be hastened after dealing with the enigmatic receiver. The Chiefs obviously were desperate for a receiver when Az Hakim pulled a fast one and back out on a verbal agreement with Kansas City and instead signed with New Orleans.

Vermeil, as expected, was appalled by this saying that people should stick to their word and then gave a shout out to the fans in St. Louis. Vermeil immediately excused himself afterwards for a few minutes to have a good cry in the locker room.

Hakim's act opened a spot for Mitchell in Kansas City, which is fortunate because New Orleans already had its required number of loud mouth receivers, so signing Mitchell was not an option. Mitchell, with the help of Luke Saks of NFL Players Inc., is trying to rebuild his image. Even Vermeil was singing his praises.

"He's an experienced receiver, a first round pick and one that we also rated a first round pick when he came out," Vermeil said. "He's a good friend of mine; his attitude's real good and [Eagles coach] Andy Reid gave him an outstanding recommendation."

Reid had not given Mitchell such an outstanding recommendation when he cut the first-round bust earlier this offseason. Does Vermeil understand sarcasm? Here's how the phone call likely went down.

"Hey Andy, we're thinking of signing Freddie Mitchell. What do you think?"

"Uh, he's a great guy. A real quite, shy, and hard working guy. He's not afraid to get dirty or make a big impact. I think, though, I admire his humbility (sic) more than anything."

"Okay, thanks Andy. I appreciate that."

*click*

"Uh, Dick, I was joking. Dick, Dick???"

*dial tone*

But maybe Mitchell has learned his lesson. Maybe this latest episode has turned him into a more mature player.

"Az Hakim is a great receiver," Mitchell said. "I would have chosen Az Hakim because he can come right in. He has been with Coach vermeil before so it's not really second fiddle."

Mitchell is indeed second-fiddle. And he is not talking about playing second fiddle to Torry Holt or Isaac Bruce. He is talking about Az Hakim. What happened to the Freddie Mitchell that believed he was on equal-footing with Terrell Owens? Now he is saying that he does not mind being sloppy seconds to Hakim?

Football really is a humbling sport.

JAIL TIME FOR REDSKINS STARTER?

Washington Redskins safety Sean Taylor would face a minimum prison sentence of three years if convicted on charges of point a gun during a dispute about an all-terrain vehicle.

Attorney's for Taylor want the trial, scheduled for September 12, pushed back until after the Redskins season is over. The judge agreed and moved the trial date back to late October.

CONGRATULATIONS

Angie Harmon gave berth to her second daughter on Monday, Avery Grace Stokley.

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