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Hickok SportsThoughts

Sports historian and author Ralph Hickok of www.hickoksports.com sometimes meanders on about current happenings in sports and sometimes looks back in languor.

Monday, September 05, 2005

A Few NFL Roster Notes

The final NFL cuts always produce a few items of interest. Here are some tidbits that caught my eye:
At the moment, Doug Flutie is the last player left from the U. S. Football League. Punter Sean Landeta, who also played in the USFL, was cut by the Philadelphia Eagles, while Flutie is Tom Brady's backup at quarterback with the New England Patriots. I say at the moment because there's always the chance that some team, desperate for a punter, will sign Landeta in the course of the season.
New England's third quarterback, incidentally, is Matt Cassel, who threw only 33 passes in his college career. At Southern Cal, he backed up two Heisman Trophy winners, Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart. Cassel had 54 pass attempts in the pre-season, more than he threw in his four years of college. I wonder if his arm is sore.
Another rookie quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, stuck with the St. Louis Rams. The interesting tidbit here is that Fitzpatrick is from Harvard. A few Harvard guys have played in the NFL, including Minnesota center Matt Birk, but I'm pretty sure that Fitzpatrick is the only T-formation quarterback from Harvard ever to be on an NFL regular-season roster.
Okay, one further quarterback note: The New York Giants cut Jesse Palmer and kept rookie Jared Lorenzen. Palmer is probably better known for starring in the fifth installment of ABC's The Bachelor, while Lorenzen is known (if he's known at all) as football's first 300-pound quarterback, when he was at the University of Kentucky.
Graced by such nicknames as "J-Load," the "Hefty Lefty," the "Pillsbury Throw Boy," and the "Round Mound of Touchdown," Lorenzen passed for 10,354 yards and 78 touchdowns in 41 games at Kentucky. He signed with the Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2004 but never showed up at training camp. This year he did, though, and was immediately told to lose weight. Evidently he has; the Giants list him at 275 pounds, though other sources say he's 288.
Just for the record, starter Eli Manning weighs 218 pounds and backup Tim Hasselbeck weighs 211. Before Lorenzen, the NFL's biggest QB was Daunte Culpepper of the Vikings, at 260 pounds.
Finally, running back Jarrett Payton, Walter's son, was cut by the Titans. However, he's been signed to the team's practice squad, so he may not be done yet.

And now for something completely different


Red Sox fans will love this. Yankee fans will hate it.
The link will take to Google image search results for "universal choke sign."