When last we left over-the-top latte man, Peter King, he was lamenting the loss of Roger Ebert, who was apparently to film criticism what Troy Brown was to the Patriots teams of the early to mid Aughts. PK also feigned like he didn’t know what a bunch of fancypants writerly words mean because he’s just like you and me, you see, except incompetent and a millionaire. Finally, Peter discovered the true sting of poverty in America because someone mistook his slovenly ass for a hobo outside of a grocery store in Manhattan. DON’T EVER CALL HIM OUT FOR BEING A BRAGGING RICH ASSHOLE! PK KNOWS SUFFERING!
But what about this week? This weekend was mock draft weekend. Did you know that meaningless bullsh*t is hard when half the picks aren’t already spelled out a month before the draft? Also, Peter King watched The Masters and talks way too much about it because he thinks the world needs him to weigh in on important matters when really no one cares at all. That’s what makes this fun! READ ON.
Lord. How great was that golf?
On a scale of Don’t Care to Why Are You Leading a Football Column With This, I give it a semi-7.5.
Angel Cabrera’s approach shot on 18 and Adam Scott’s putting and Cabrera’s excruciating near-miss putt and Scott’s winning putt … and the sportsmanship.
My stars, the sportsmanship. Players were gracious in defeat and victory. Just the sort of behavior that gives crusty old white people who love golf their first 80-year-old man chub in years.
The real sportsmanship.
THE LOFTY SPORTSMANSHIP.
And hitting those championship shots under such tremendous pressure. That’s one of the best 40 minutes of sport I can recall, in any game, any match.
Also probably the only 40 minutes of golf PK watched this year. But he knows people are talking about it, so he feels obligated to weigh in like people give a shit about his take on The Masters.
How many of you said, watching that: “I’ve got to get to the Masters!” And you do. I scratched that off the bucket list two years ago
“What’s that? Have YOU never been to Augusta? Shame on you, person of limited means. Far be it from me to tell another how to live their life, but unless you’ve been, it’s like you’re spitting in God’s eye for squandering the gift of life. You simply must.”
and I’m still determined to go again, once, twice, three times.
Basically, as many times as he can get an executive from a sports marketing firm to foot the bill for him.
/still can’t believe PK accepted a gift from a PR flack and no one in the journalism community gives him shit for it.
Other than the theater and the beauty and the setting, what’s so great about it?
Anyway, enough with my Masters infomercial.
What? No, no, tell us more about the walkability of Augusta! Is there Allagash available? Can you count the minorities on one hand?
The next big sports thing is 10 nights away.
Astros-Red Sox, am I right?
That’s the first night of filming of Draft Day, the next Costner movie, in which he plays Cleveland GM Mike Lombardi. (Sort of.) It’s also the night of the first round of the NFL draft, which occupied most of my time this weekend when I wasn’t drooling at the TV over the Masters.
“Don’t worry about the drool, honey. I’m trying really hard to show that I cared about this important sports thing. I’ll clean it up when it’s done.”
This was mock draft weekend.
THE mock draft weekend!?
When Paul Zimmerman suffered a series of strokes four-and-a-half years ago, SI’s Mock Draft was handed down to me. I’ve done one forever, just not with the pressure that comes from following Dr. Z.
This time, he’s mock drafting FOR KEEPS.
It used to drive Zim crazy, the time he spent on the unknowable. Many’s the Sunday afternoon before the draft we’d be on the phone, Zim trying to crack the code of just one more team and asking if I knew anything to help. How angry he’d be if he found out something about, say, the Vikings at 11, that swayed him to make a change there, and then of course the dominoes would fall and he’d have to change 12, 13, 17, 18, 20, 23, 25, 26, 27 and 28. Aaaarrrrrgggghhhhh! Not happy Sundays.
Oh noes! Your precious guesswork, ruined! That thing no one gives an iota of a shit about once the actual draft starts!
Now, with round one of the draft moved to a Thursday night, the magazine has moved the mock to a week earlier. I used to file mine two or three days before the draft, online; now I file it 11 days before, and it runs in the magazine a week before. It’s never very pretty. This year, it could be a stink bomb.
I talked in confidence to quite a few people around the league Friday through Sunday, so they could (I hoped) be relatively honest. I tried to barter some information as the calls went on, but mostly I was fishing.
“HEY DIMITROFF, I’LL TELL YOU WHO THE SAINTS ARE DRAFTING IF YOU SEND ME A FRAMED PHOTO! HAHA, JUST KIDDING, I’LL TELL YOU ANYWAY!”
And the lines I cast over the weekend came up empty quite a bit.
Nuggets not biting? You’re just using the wrong bait. Next time, offer exclusive travel bitching. That’s value they can’t deny.
Empathizing with me Sunday was Mike Mayock, the wizard of these things and of draft research
“These things” being draft research, you redundant doof.
and we agreed on the three reasons draft-placement intelligence is going to be hard to come by this year. 1. The absence of no-doubt franchise quarterbacks means you can’t pencil in great prospects at the very top. 2. There’s a lack of must-have franchise guys at the top of the draft, with a bigger upper middle class than normal, meaning a Star Lotulelei could go sixth or 26th; beauty’s in the eye of the GMs. 3. So many new GMs and franchise czars are at the top of the draft — six new coaches in the top 10 of the draft, and seven new men running draft rooms — that it’s tough to predict what they’ll do when they haven’t developed a track record.
“Waaaaahhhhh, the first five picks of this draft aren’t already in place! Why does the world have to make pulling shit out of our ass so harrrrddddddd?”
“And,” Mayock said, “you throw a Chip Kelly in there at No. 4. He could be so different. I’m not sure they value things in Philadelphia the way everyone else does in the league anymore.
Good point. Chip Kelly is simply operating on a different standard than everyone else. That’s why the Eagles are taking a kicking tee in the first.
Scattershooting after that: I did one mock draft Saturday night that ended with no quarterbacks in the first round.
Did another in which no fewer than six unicorns went in the first 20 picks. And here’s the thing: ALL SEC SCHOOLS.
But I eventually put Geno Smith in my mock for the magazine, because there’s just too much smoke about him going in the first round.
He’s oversmoked! All smoke signals point to him being taken within this 32-pick window, unless he isn’t!
As I reported Sunday night, Minnesota GM Rick Spielman ate dinner the night before the Notre Dame Pro Day with Manti Te’o.
ZOMG! That totally means they’re gonna draft him!
The Vikings have four Notre Dame players on their roster. As Archie Bunker might say, Ipso fatso there Edith, that imaginary guy’s going to the Vikings.
Clearly Minnesota just wants to stockpile players from this one overrated school. When you can build a roster around a college that’s relevant once every 20 years, you do it.
Then again, he might not.
But a TV character from the ’70s said so!
But the Vikes do have two picks, 23 and 25, right in the Te’o neighborhood
The imaginary neighborhood of make-believe houses!
and Minnesota has Tyrone McKenzie at middle linebacker
And Ronaiah Tuiasosopo working the phones in their war room.
Now for the Super Bowl participants. San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh has been at a high number of receiver workouts, I’m told. “This isn’t about 2013 for the Niners,” one GM told me. “Harbaugh knows he’ll be there for a while. They just lost Randy Moss, and Anquan Boldin is there for a year, and they don’t know about [2012 first-round pick] A.J. Jenkins [out of Illinois]. Receiver’s very logical for them there.”
Extremely logical. Possibly too logical. Bust on a receiver the year before? Better force another first rounder on a future need position rather than the best available player. That never fails.
At 32, Baltimore would love a physical safety to play alongside free-agent acquisition Michael Huff, but it could be that all three big safeties here (Kenny Vaccaro, Matt Elam and Jonathan Cyprien) are all gone, and a tight end they love, Tyler Eifert, is gone too. Alec Ogletree wouldn’t surprise here, but the guy I gave them in my mock draft is someone I haven’t seen anyone else put in the first round. It’s that kind of year in mock draft-land.
I had them re-drafting John Elway, just to get back at John Elway! YOU NEVER KNOW!
Quote of the Week II
“There is not a guy that’s done more for this franchise in this offseason than Matthew Stafford. The guy’s been in the building every day. He’s been living here the entire offseason. He’s been working out, he’s helped us recruit free agents, he’s been involved on a daily basis in trying to get ready for the season, and he would do anything to help us be successful.”
— Detroit president Tom Lewand, on his quarterback.
The Lions and Stafford will have a new long-term deal done by the end of the year. Write it down.
/writes down “laugh at Lions fans”
Quote of the Week III
“I grew up a Dallas Cowboys fan. I loved Roger Staubach. I always dreamed of playing for the Cowboys, playing in the Super Bowl.”
— Brett Favre, in an interview with Cowboys radio voice Brad Sham at an SMU-sponsored event in Dallas Friday.
Of course you grew up a Cowboys fan. Fuck you with a chainsaw, Brett Favre.
Ridiculously Overstated Quote of the Week
“This will cast a dark shadow over the entire day of golf, over this entire event, but more importantly over his entire career for the rest of the life.”
— Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, on the two-stroke penalty against Tiger Woods in the Masters Saturday, and what said penalty will mean for Woods in the future.
So … on the day Tiger Woods dies, everyone will skip right by the 14 majors he won (or 18, or 24, by then) and say, “All of the victories are rendered insignificant by the time Tiger dropped his ball two feet behind the spot where he should have dropped it in the 2013 Masters. And that’s the most important thing he ever did, positive or negative.”
That is some pathetic golf analysis. Shouldn’t these analysts go to Hyperbole School?
That’s not just PK trying to look smart by picking on an easy target for criticism. That’s an honest to goodness plug for his First Grade in Hyperbology 101 at Wichita State class, beginning in the fall. It’s the best class going on the subject ever, unless there are others that are better, which there might be, I think.
Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week
Well, now I’ve seen the other side.
“So this is what it looks like OUTSIDE of Favre’s anus. Neat!”
I spent three days last week in Boston, Detroit and Chicago talking to advertisers and ad agency reps about the new NFL-exclusive website SI is foolish enough to be giving me to play with. This week, I’ll do more in Manhattan, and I’ll travel to Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles.
“Oh nothing, just the pedestrian business of getting people to give me money for my own website. You know, just the nitty gritty of it. I won’t bore you with details, because SI lawyers have told me not to. DAMN THEM, I WANT TO BRAG SO BAD!”
The Five Things I Have Learned About the Business of Our Business:
1. Coffeenerdness is not lofty SEO bait.
2. I have to add a GIF of Kate Upton in all my columns now.
3. If I have to tell you about Santa Clara’s travel schedule, make it into a slideshow.
4. Now replace the travel schedule with tits.
5. Not my tits.
1. Dress is pretty casual. I have never dressed well consistently, but I figured I should on this trip, and so I went in with a pinstripe suit to chat with the Chevy Silverado folks. Not a tie in the room. Oooops. Same on the tour of agencies and companies in Chicago.
“WHAT GIVES!? I WATCHED ‘MAD MEN’ AND ALL YOU GUYS DRESSED FANCY! WHEN DID TV START LYING TO ME!?”
2. Youth is served. Oldest of nine people in the room for one of the meetings: 30. Impressed with the intelligence of a room full of execs young enough to be my children. They do what people should do when they’re trying to figure if there’s a match between them and a media company: They think and brainstorm and throw out ideas that get dismissed a minute later. A cool experience.
“You want me to do a Mountain Dew KickStarter of the week? I’m sorry, boys. This is strictly a coffee site. I thought we had an understanding.”
3. We on this side of the biz always think the ads will be there, but … There’s money out there.
Whoa whoa whoa, “the biz”? Cool it with the industry jargon, PK, I’m not insidery enough. I’VE NEVER BEEN TO THE MASTERS, I’M SORRY!
That I see. But you have to work for it, and you have to convince people why their money will be better spent on this site than on sites and TV shows significantly more mountainous.
“I know we are over-statted in terms mountainosity, but if you want to reach middle aged football fans who know nothing about football and really want to talk about the Red Sox and how much they love ‘Veep’ that is our top demo.”
4. Thought I’d be meeting in some pretty stuffy board rooms. Not.
Met most of Casual Friday with different agencies, and their meeting places are just as casual. In one place they brainstorm on the wall (a giant dry-erase wall) with markers.
ZOOPER ZANY! I bet they even have more than one color!
5. You do a better job if you can drink well out there. I have closed Ditka’s. Now that is a point of pride. I’m not usually a bar-closer or a restaurant-closer, but when the Iron Mike’s Icon Cabernet flowed, I got a pretty good second wind. Talk about emptying the NFL Story Saddlebag, those guys for four big companies got my best stuff that night. And when the party of 12 went downstairs, golly, everyone was gone and the place was being vacuumed.
“THESE YOUNG CASUAL DRESSERS DIDN’T THINK OL’ PETEY COULD HANG! I SHOWED THEM A THING OR TWO! I HAD THREE, MAYBE FOUR GLASSES OF THAT WINE! AND LEMME TELL YOU, THE STUFF THEY SAY ABOUT IN VINO VERITAS AIN’T JUST TALK. BY THE END OF THE NIGHT, I DREW BILL PARCELLS DICK FROM MEMORY ON THR DRY-ERASE BOARD.”
Tweet of the Week II
“Talked to my dad about the viewer calling in on Tiger. We both agreed its best viewers can’t call in holding penalties on me.”
— @geoffschwartz, offensive tackle of the Kansas City Chiefs, on the Tiger Woods penalty-stroke affair.
Since there are holding penalties are pretty much every play, that would actually be kind of delightful chaos.
Ten Things I Think I Think
1. I think the Antoine Winfield signing by Seattle is another good one — in part because of the plans the Seahawks have for the 35-year-old Winfield. Though Winfield played 1,100 snaps last season, it’d be a fluke if he matched that this season. The Seahawks plan to use him in the nickel role, which means maybe 600 snaps a game.
I don’t usually pounce on PK typos, since everyone commits them from time to time, but that’s a pretty good one. Every week, Antoine Winfield is pissed because he only gets a fraction of his promised 600 snaps a game.
2. I think Cincinnati-Pittsburgh games next season all of a sudden got more network-attractive, assuming the Bengals and James Harrison get their deal done today. Harrison trying to sack Ben Roethlisberger (and Harrison will be revved up in a big way for those games, having been cap-purged by the Steelers) will be eight must-see quarters.
Yup, nothing more friendly for primetime than a 6-seed against a team that didn’t make the playoffs because an old-ass linebacker switched teams.
5. I think this news item came to our attention over the weekend: Tyrann Mathieu admitted to extensive marijuana use while at LSU. In other news, the Masters had a slightly dramatic climax Sunday.
In other other news, MMQB has a somewhat detrimental effect on my sanity.
6. I think someone’s going to have to tell me, if the Patriots really wanted Emmanuel Sanders in restricted free agency, why they signed him to a one-year, $2.5 million contract. That’s like saying, “Well, we sort of want him, but we’re really not sure, and we’ll give him a D-minus deal, and maybe Pittsburgh will just take the third-round pick in return.”
And why didn’t they credit Peter King for his trademark equivocating?
I don’t get the gesture. At all.
Well, you see, the Patriots wanted him at a certain price and knew the Steelers are sufficiently tight against the salary cap that it was far from certain that Pittsburgh would match that modest offer. And even if the Steelers did end up matching the offer and keeping Sanders, the Patriots just made another AFC team eat up cap space for essentially no cost.
YAY, FOOTBAW ANALYSIS IZZ FUN!
9. I think Peyton Manning is learning patience.
“Foreplay, Peyton. There’s a word for that.”
He has learned in his offseason throwing sessions he still isn’t throwing as well as he did before his four neck surgeries, but it’s not bothering him, I’m told, because he knows nerve regeneration can take years. He’s learned to use what he has and not worry about what he doesn’t have.
“Dr. Strangeneck: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying And Love My Android Parts.”
10. I think these are my non-NFL thoughts of the week:
e. Memo to MLB: Maybe scheduling the Mets to start the season in Queens (six games), Philadelphia (three) and outdoors in Minneapolis (three, minus Sunday’s sleet-out), and then Colorado (three), with temperatures for one game this week scheduled to be in the teens, wasn’t such a great idea.
Good thing those clowns aren’t responsible for deciding who hosts the Super Bowl!
f. Memo to MLB II: Maybe scheduling the Yankees to start the season in the Bronx (three games), Detroit (three games) and Cleveland (two coldouts, one game) wasn’t such a great idea.
g. Memo to MLB III: Maybe scheduling the Twins outdoors in the north for the first six weeks of the season wasn’t such a good idea.
Memo to MLB: Please schedule all games at the beginning of next season in the Yukon territory just to piss Peter King off. Now carry on with shit I don’t care about.
h. By the way, baseball needed to suspend Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin for five games longer than the period Dodgers pitcher Zach Greinke will be gone with his fractured collarbone (which will keep Greinke out for two months), which would be a revolutionary but justifiable penalty. Instead, Quentin got eight games. There was no need for Quentin, who clearly has some sort of anger-management problem, to charge the mound Thursday night in San Diego
Oh hey, the hyperbole class isn’t in session yet, but I see the dimestore psychology class is underway. This guy got hit with a pitch and charged the mount. No doubt he has deep-seated mental issues.
i. Coffeenerdness: You know you’re drinking too much espresso when you have a Starbucks gold card in your wallet and on your Starbucks phone app. Different cards too. Gold at both. That means I’m over the top as a latte man.
Don’t be so modest, PK. You’re what all the other latte men aspire to be. You’re the latte-est man there is. That’s right, bitches, not one, but TWO Starbucks gold cards. Just call Peter by his rap name, “2 CARDZ”
j. Beernerdness: Doubt I am the first, but I managed to have an Iron Mike’s Ale (nice and dark) and glass of his Iron Mike’s The Icon Cabernet (bold, heavy on the blackberry aroma) in the same evening. And I’m a better man for it.
Careful of the old saying: Mike Ditka beer before Mike Ditka liquor, I don’t have a rhyme for this but you’re a name-dropping asshole.
The Adieu Haiku
should instruct a class in class.
Wouldn’t you enroll?
Class taught in Spanish
How you say… “Hyperbole”?
That class down the hall.
I want more like this!
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