The End of the Andy Reid Era

After 14 seasons with the Eagles, Andy Reid was fired on January 31, 2012.

After 14 seasons with the Eagles, Andy Reid was fired on January 31, 2012 after a 4-12 season.

In 1998, the Philadelphia Eagles finished 3-13, the worst mark in the league, and Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie turned to Green Bay Packers assistant coach Andy Reid to lead the Eagles. Reid led the Eagles to one of the most successful periods in franchise history, coaching superstar players such as Donovan McNabb, Brian Dawkins, Jeremiah Trotter, and Terrell Owens. Today, the Eagles announced they have fired Reid after 14 seasons as head coach, ending the longest tenure in the NFL. Reid has had his fair share of notable moments with the Eagles, both good and bad.

The Good

  • Led the Eagles to eight seasons with 10 wins or more, including three 12+ win seasons
  • Won six NFC East division championships, including four straight from 2001-04
  • Made 5 NFC Championship Game appearances
  • Led the Eagles to Super Bowl XXXIX in 2004 against the New England Patriots
  • Coached 19 different players to 44 combined Pro Bowl appearances
  • Holds Eagles records for wins (130), winning percentage (.585), and playoff victories (10) by a coach
  • Also led the Eagles’ front office as General Manager from 2001-05, and made all final football decisions from 2001-12
  • Won 2002 AP NFL Coach of the Year award

The Bad

  • Lost three consecutive NFC Championship Games from 2001-03, twice at home
  • Lost Super Bowl XXXIX to the New England Patriots in 2004, during which he was criticized for poor clock and game management in the 4th quarter
  • Led four teams to last place finished in the NFC East
  • Suspended WR Terrell Owens for conduct detrimental to the team in 2005 (and dealt with the media frenzy surrounding Owens), and released Owens in 2006
  • Finished his final two seasons in Philadelphia 12-16, including a 4-12 record this year (worst in the NFC)

Reid’s tenure in Philadelphia was perhaps the most successful in Philadelphia Eagles’ history. He finishes with a career record of 130 wins, 92 losses, and one tie (.585 win percentage). Reid was also named the head coach of the Eagles’ 75th Anniversary Team in 2007, a team that also featured nine of his players. Yet while Reid was very successful, he never won a Super Bowl in Philadelphia, which will linger in the minds of Eagles fans. Wherever Coach Reid ends up, his legacy in Philadelphia will always be remembered.

Jets Should Have Started Tebow for Week 17

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The ball is Rex Ryan’s court now, who must show the world again Mark Sanchez is his guy and QB Tim Tebow isn’t worthy of a start. Photo credit: Kirby Lee/USA Today.

Just when you think the Jets’ QB carousel couldn’t get anymore crazier and tiresome, the last week of the NFL’s regular season proves to be the most erratic as Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan announced earlier today that last week’s starter, Greg McElroy, their seventh round pick in the 2011 draft from Alabama, suffered a concussion following his first NFL start against the San Diego Chargers. No.2 on the depth chart a week ago, Mark Sanchez returns to his starting roots in Buffalo this week, in a game that is essentially meaningless for both teams.

Against the Chargers, McElroy was sacked a whopping 11 times, went 14-24 for 185 yards, and threw one interception. At the press conference announcing the news of McElroy’s injury, Ryan referenced the numbers Sanchez posted against Buffalo in the Jets’ inaugural game of the 2012 season, also admitting “…that doesn’t mean Tim [Tebow] won’t play in this game, but, I’m more comfortable starting Mark.” Against the Bills on Sep. 9, Sanchez went 19-27 for 266 yards with three touchdowns and a passer rating of 123.4. Since then, it’s all been downhill for Sanchez, culminating in the infamous “Butt-fumble” Thanksgiving night game versus the division-rival Patriots as well as the Monday night game against the Tennessee Titans where Sanchez threw four interceptions.

Since giving up fourth and sixth round picks for the presence-carrying Tebow back in March, we’ve heard the words “dynamic” and “special” when it came to the Jets’ plans for their offense this season. Used sparingly in the wildcat and even lining up at tight-end in a game against the Miami Dolphins, Tebow has had 39 yards for the year and not a single touchdown to his name for the 2012 season. Depending on who you ask, he may or may not have asked out of the wildcat role in last week’s game against the San Diego Chargers; duties went to WR Jeremy Kerley.

About a year ago, when nothing mattered to them considering they had the No.1 seed locked up as well as home field advantage, the Green Bay Packers started QB Matt Flynn, who had the game of his life, throwing for 480 yards and a whopping six touchdowns. A free agent at the end of the 2011-2012 season, Matt Flynn drew high demand from those looking for a Quarterback; the Cardinals, Jets, and Dolphins, to name a few. Flynn’s stock was never higher, and with Russell Wilson leading the Seahawks to 150 points in their last three games, Flynn could again be on the market.

Tim Tebow

It has been a lost year for Tim Tebow, in terms of production and his career, which already has plenty of questions. Photo credit: Joel Auerbach, Getty Images

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With Sanchez’s confidence clearly shaken, what reason does anyone have to believe that he’ll post numbers similar to Week One against Buffalo? Sure, Sanchez has posted pretty good numbers against them aside from his sixth career start (in 2009) in which he threw five interceptions; but who’s to say the Jets won’t catch lightning in a bottle with Tebow similar to the Packers last year with Flynn? Yes, there are rumblings of Tebow being a terrible practice player, but when the team goes from saying they’ll put him in 20-25 plays a game to not using him at all, the question becomes why are the holding him back? We know what we’re getting with Sanchez– a mediocre performance, so why not give Tebow a shot to appease his large fan-base, as well as the numerous fans all over the league that have been chanting his name since the infamous “butt-fumble” game? One other aspect to think about is if this were a home game; is one really led to believe Ryan would subject his guy Sanchez to a crowd filled with spite and anger in a season gone totally wrong? We may never know who truly authorized this Tebow deal (my guess would be Tannenbaum and owner Woody Johnson, as is probably yours), and while Ryan doesn’t seem like the culprit, I’d have to think a home game would conflict his decision a little bit more.

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Tebow is expected to move on to Jacksonville following this year, and who could blame him? If the Jets were smart, they’d start him; even if he does a poor job–does it really matter? Jacksonville is hungry for a name that sells tickets, and who better than Tebow? If he does well–the Jets end the season on a high note, and while some will call for heads to roll for not using him earlier on in this lost season, it’s very likely the heads of General Manager Mike Tannenbaum, Offensive Coordinator Tony Sparano and perhaps Rex will roll anyway. The Jets owe it to their fans after a season of false hopes and strange controversy, and to Tebow, after costing him a year of his career, whether he’s a quarterback or not.

The Ultimate 2012 Sports Quiz

2012 was a very memorable year in sports. Records were broken, championships were won, and the Summer Olympics once again captivated the world. But it’s now time to see how much you know about the world of sports in 2012. Try your best to answer these questions, and submit them to the “Our Mission” page to see if you are the most knowledgeable sports fan!

  1. In the 2012 BCS National Championship Game, Alabama shut out #1 LSU 21-0. When was the last time the #1 team in college football was shut out?
  2. Super Bowl XLVI generated the most advertising revenue of any Super Bowl in history. How many million dollars did NBC earn from advertising revenues?
  3. The Kentucky Wildcats won the 2012 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament over the Kansas Jayhawks. How many Wildcats were drafted in the 2012 NBA Draft?
  4. At the 2012 Masters, Bubba Watson hooked a ball out of the trees onto the green in a playoff to win his first major. How long was that famous hook shot from the hole?
  5. The 2012 Kentucky Derby set new attendance and gambling records. How much money was wagered on the derby field in 2012?
  6. The Los Angeles Kings defeated the New Jersey Devils to win their first Stanley Cup in 45 years. Which two teams share a 45-year Stanley Cup drought?
  7. 2012 Home Run Derby winner Prince Fielder has 260 career home runs. How many of those home runs are walk-off winners?
  8. The 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England set new social media records for sporting events. Which athlete had the most Youtube views during the Olympics?
  9. On September 1, #19 Oklahoma State throttled Savannah State 84-0. How much did Savannah State earn for playing the Cowboys?
  10. In Game 1 of the 2012 World Series, Giants 3B Pablo Sandoval hit three home runs. How many other players have homered three times in a World Series game?
  11. In the 2012 Maui Invitational, Chaminade upset the University of Texas 86-73. How many wins does Chaminade have in the 29-year history of the tournament?
  12. Which athlete has the most followers on Twitter, as of Christmas Eve 2012?

 

Best of luck to everyone, and Happy Holidays from Front Office Sports!

Young Guns: Ranking the Rookie QB’s

Colts QB Andrew Luck is on pace to eclipse 4,000 passing yards in his rookie season.

Colts QB Andrew Luck is on pace to eclipse 4,000 passing yards in his rookie season.

Eleven quarterbacks were selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, and five of them have been their respective team’s starting quarterback for the majority of the season. Some of the other QBs have started, but in limited roles. 7th round pick Ryan Lindley has failed to help the struggling Arizona Cardinals, and Eagles backup Nick Foles hasn’t exactly righted the ship in Philadelphia after Michael Vick suffered a concussion. But several quarterbacks have made their mark, for better or worse.

5. Brandon Weeden, Cleveland Browns, 22nd overall pick

The Cleveland Browns just can’t seem to catch a lucky break, can they? They turned to Weeden, a 29-year-old “veteran” as their franchise quarterback in 2012. While he has shown signs of greatness, he has been far too inconsistent, throwing 17 interceptions and posting a QB rating of only 72.4, good for 32nd in the league. Weeden may be the franchise quarterback, but the franchise continues to struggle around him.

4. Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins, 8th overall pick

Like Weeden in Cleveland, Tannehill has been good, but not great, and he doesn’t have a great defense to back him up. Tannehill has decent stats (2929 yds, 10 TDs, 12 INT) and he broke several of Dan Marino’s franchise records this season. He is a good quarterback who can grow into one of the league’s elite, but compared to the rest of the rookies, he remains on the low end of the rookie spectrum.

3. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts, 1st overall pick

Sure he turned around a 2-14 team to 9 wins in one year, but Luck has had his share of inconsistency as well. His 18 interceptions are tied with Drew Brees for the most in the NFL, but he has thrown for 20 TDs and run for five more. You can’t argue with a 4,000 yard season either. Luck will most likely be in the playoffs, and deserves a great deal of credit for taking charge of the Colts.

2. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks, 75th overall pick

Replacement referee-laden “touchdown-interception” aside, Wilson has risen to stardom in Seattle. A dual-threat quarterback, Wilson has scored 24 touchdowns this season, and has an impressive 95.5 passer rating, eighth best in the league. Like Luck, he has led his team to a 9-5 record and a likely playoff spot, and because of his consistency, Seattle’s offense is among the NFL’s best.

Robert Griffin III of the Redskins is leading the NFL's Rookie of the Year race.

Robert Griffin III of the Redskins is leading the NFL’s Rookie of the Year race.

1. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins, 2nd overall pick

The Redskins traded three first round picks and a second round pick for the right to draft the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner. It’s a good thing they did. RG3 has quickly become an NFL superstar, compiling 3,650 all-purpose yards, scoring 24 touchdowns, and throwing just four picks. He has led the Redskins to a three-way tie for the NFC East division lead. A true leader, Griffin was named one of the Redskins captains on November 14, and has not disappointed. With RG3 at the helm, the future looks bright in our nation’s capital.

Tebow Time Over in New York?

Jets QB Tim Tebow has completed six passes for 39 yards and has 102 rushing yards this season. (Image Source: USA Today)

Jets QB Tim Tebow has completed six passes for 39 yards and has 102 rushing yards this season. (Image Source: USA Today)

From his high school days, Tim Tebow has impressed on the field, and his religious background has made him one of the most popular and most talked about athletes in the NFL. But ever since he joined the New York Jets, Tebow has been placed on the back burner. Now, it appears that “Tebow Time” is over in New York.

The Jets announced earlier today that starting quarterback Mark Sanchez would be benched in favor of Greg McElroy, the third QB on the Jets’ depth chart. Tebow, the second Jets QB, cracked two ribs in November, and has seen limited playing time since. In last night’s game against the Tennessee Titans, Tebow played only one series, throwing an incompletion and running three times for 15 yards. Tebow has only attempted eight passes this season, being used mostly as a fullback or wildcat quarterback running for short yardage situations.

This latest decision adds to the Jets’ quarterback carousel this season. Franchise quarterback Mark Sanchez has struggled this season, throwing only 13 touchdowns and committing 30 turnovers. McElroy, a former national champion at Alabama, entered the Jets’ December 2nd game against the Cardinals in relief of Sanchez, and led the Jets to victory with a touchdown pass, with a QB Rating of 118.5.

As for Tebow, an NCAA Champion and Heisman Trophy winner, his stay in New York will likely end this year. He signed a 3 year, $6 million contract last offseason, with his salary in 2012 being $1.1 million. Tebow gained notoriety in the NFL world for completing six fourth-quarter comebacks last season, and leading the Broncos to an overtime win in the Wild Card playoffs against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Tebow was traded from the Broncos to the Jets for two draft picks.

So where could Tim Tebow be headed? Perhaps teams like the Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cardinals will show interest because of their concerns at quarterback. The Eagles will likely release franchise QB Michael Vick because of injury concerns, and the Cardinals can’t seem to find that one great starter on their roster. But the Jacksonville Jaguars are the safest bet. Even though they have both Chad Henne and Blaine Gabbert on the roster, having a homegrown player like Tebow (who grew up in nearby Ponte Vedra Beach) would definitely attract more fans to a struggling, lackluster franchise.

Even though he never fully got his feet wet in New York, Tebow can still play at the highest level. Look for Tebow to make headlines wherever he goes, and perhaps save a dull, unattractive team in Jacksonville.

MLB, StubHub Agree to Extension

MLB and StubHub have partnered together since 2007 to give fans more access to tickets.

MLB and StubHub have partnered together since 2007 to give fans more access to tickets.

Major League Baseball announced today that it has renewed its contract with StubHub, the online ticket marketplace owned by eBay. The two firms originally started business together in 2007, and their recent contract expired a few months ago.

Founded in 2000 by two Stanford University business students, StubHub is the world’s largest ticket marketplace. Fans can purchase and sell tickets for sporting events, concerts, circus shows, and theater productions. In 2007, the business was purchased by the internet marketplace company eBay. StubHub has formal relationships with every MLB team (except the Blue Jays), as well as Major League Soccer, the Canadian Football League, eight NFL teams, and twenty NCAA institutions.

MLB Advanced Media CEO Bob Bowman said ”this renewal reflects its successes in an ever-evolving space.”

In a world where technology thrives, this partnership will ensure that fans can remain involved with their teams. It also gives fans a great deal of flexibility when purchasing season ticket plans, or deciding to attend games at the last-minute. StubHub is quick, efficient, and charges only a modest handling fee for all purchases. Sports fans, especially those of Major League Baseball, are glad to see StubHub and MLB extend their partnership

Texas A&M’s Heisman Marketing Plan

Johnny Manziel, 20, became the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy on December 8, 2012.

It took 78 years for a freshman to win college football’s most prestigious award, but it finally happened this year. Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel became the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy on Saturday night. Manziel beat out Notre Dame LB Manti Te’o and Kansas State QB Collin Klein to become the second Aggie to win the Heisman Trophy.

Manziel succeeded Ryan Tannehill at Texas A&M, a QB who was the ninth pick in the 2012 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins. Manziel led the Aggies with 4,600 all-purpose yards (the most in SEC history) and 43 touchdowns. After A&M upset then #1 Alabama, Manziel earned the moniker “Johnny Football”. Now, Texas A&M isn’t wasting any time marketing Manziel and the Heisman.

Manziel will be featured on a Times Square billboard tomorrow, and full-page advertisements for Manziel and Texas A&M will be featured in the New York Times and USA Today. Website advertisements have also been purchased, and the Manziel family is in the process of securing the trademark “Johnny Football” to use once Manziel graduates from college.

But while this marketing may bring attention to Texas A&M, the school can not profit from the campaign, according to NCAA rules. Still, that has not stopped apparel manufacturers like Adidas from creating Texas A&M apparel with Heisman references. Still, the school expects to make serious money from the Heisman Trophy victory by Manziel. Last year, Baylor University issued a  report claiming that Robert Griffin III’s Heisman victory earned the school more than $200 million. Texas A&M expects to earn even more.

And while the school may benefit financially, Manziel can do nothing to pad his own bank account. As a redshirt freshman, he is not eligible to enter the NFL Draft until 2014, and cannot sign endorsement or sponsorship contracts while he is still enrolled in school. His best bet is to go outplay his own expectations next season and win another Heisman. Until then, “Johnny Football” remains a nickname, not a slogan.