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Old 04-30-2010, 10:58 AM   #1
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Default Broncos, Jets Define Character Differently

Sorry if this article has already been posted, it's a week old. The search feature wasn't working. Anyway... good read.

Broncos, Jets Define Character Differently

David Whitley
National Columnist
http://nfl.fanhouse.com/2010/04/23/b...r-differently/

Circle October 17 on your NFL calendar. It will be Truth, Justice and the American Way vs. the Jets.

New York fans won't quite circle it that way. They'll look at the schedule and see the Broncos. But the game will be a clash of philosophies that extend beyond football.

New York believes in talent; Denver believes in character.

That much has become clear through trades and the draft. To put it in simple numbers, the Jets signed a player who has fathered seven children by six women in five states.

The Broncos drafted the world's only 22-year-old football superstar virgin.

Who would you rather see triumph?

(Note: New York can't stuff the ballot box by allowing Antonio Cromartie's children to vote).

I'm not one of Cromartie's children, nor am I a Broncos fan. I just prefer players who act like adults and organizations that encourage responsible behavior.

Then there's New York, the official petri dish of the NFL. Rex Ryan is seeing how much fungus he can cultivate before it devours the team.

You have Cromartie, who certainly knows how to replicate. You have Santonio Holmes, who'll be suspended the first four games for violating the league's substance abuse policy. Last season, Ryan picked up Braylon Edwards, who prima donna'd his way out of Cleveland.

On Thursday, the Jets drafted Boise State cornerback Kyle Wilson despite the fact he has no criminal record. He was suspended three games as a freshman, so there's always hope.

Contrast that with Denver, where Josh McDaniels has spent his first year cleaning the petri dish. He got rid of high-maintenance quarterback Jay Cutler and low-life receiver Brandon Marshall.

Denver hopes to eventually replace them with first-round picks Tim Tebow (please genuflect) and Demaryius Thomas.

For his efforts, McDaniels is being called an egomaniacal dictator who'd rather run a convent than a football team.

Ryan is generally hailed as a rambling, gambling rebel. His cause is to win a Super Bowl, which is all that matters to most fans.

I think this bad boy freight train is going to derail. They usually do.

Sure, the Cowboys of the early '90s had plenty of character-challenged players. But Jimmy Johnson uniquely managed to maintain a team-first approach. When Barry Switzer brought in his brand of Oklahoma discipline, the Cowboys' dynasty dissolved.

Jerry Jones thinks it could have been revived had he drafted Randy Moss in 1998. He's still kicking himself for being scared off by all those red flags, which explains why the Cowboys just drafted Dez Bryant.

His bad-apple credentials resulted from a troubled childhood featuring a teenage mom who reportedly dealt drugs. It sounds a lot like Thomas, whose mother and grandmother went to prison on drug charges.

The difference is Thomas didn't use that as an excuse to become a knucklehead.

"I didn't want to be that guy that is always talked about that he's a bad guy," he said. "So I just put myself around the right crowd."

If nothing else, Denver won't have to worry about its new receiver getting into an argument with the wrong crowd. Marshall did, and one of the thugs gunned down teammate Darrent Williams with bullets intended for Marshall.

But as long as he catches 21 passes a game, what's a little gangland shooting, right?

Marshall is now Miami's migraine. The Dolphins got him for about 25 cents on the dollar from Denver. That overrode Bill Parcells' proclamation that "I don't want thugs and hoodlums on the team."

Miami figures Big Tuna will provide the parental guidance Marshall needs to stop getting arrested. Surrounding problem children with the proper locker room structure sometimes works.

Moss behaved once he got to New England. His interest waned when Tom Brady got hurt. It vanished last year after Bill Belichick sent him home after being late for practice.

Moss responded by catching one pass against Carolina, whose defensive backs openly accused him of "shutting it down." When the going gets tough, the Moss stops going.

So does the Cromartie. He was a stud in 2007. Maybe it was all those PTA meetings, but by last season he'd become a wimp. His matador tackle allowed Shonn Green to cruise 53 yards for the pivotal score in the playoff game against the Jets.

Now he's taking that attitude to New York. Cromartie and Holmes are playing for contracts, which should help. If that fails, Jets management thinks Ryan has the babysitting skills necessary.

All I know is Pittsburgh was dying to get rid of Holmes, San Diego was happy to dump Cromartie and Denver's police department won't miss Marshall. And, as always, their new teams think they got a steal.

We'll see. Self-centered people eventually lose focus on the team. They stop trying when they're down by 13 in the fourth quarter. They revert to who they are.

So do players like Tebow and Thomas. That's why I hope the Broncos' approach prevails far beyond October.

I'd like to think the Jets' locker room will come apart in December. I'd like to think Denver's new guys will out-perform the old ones.

Most of all, I'd like to think that character still matters.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:02 AM   #2
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I hope it relates to chemistry and wins. It's certainly much easier to root for a team of stand-up guys.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:04 AM   #3
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Better win with bad character guys or the team will implode.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:11 AM   #4
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Interesting take. But the notion that McDaniels and the Broncos don't value talent is absurd.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:11 AM   #5
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I think there is something of a false dichotomy being propped up here. Obviously Josh is putting a big emphasis on character, but that hardly means talent is a completely secondary attribute in evaluating players.

Deciding not to invest big money in a WR who is thisclose to getting a lengthy suspension is as much risk management as it is taking a stand on character. Likewise, he obviously loved Tebow for the character aspects, but there is no way he makes that pick if he doesn't also believe in his physical/play-making ability.

That said, I do like this new emphasis, and I am glad we are taking a different approach than the Jets. Sure, I was still rooting hard for the Broncos when we had Romonaski or Travis Henry, but it is gratifying to see him try to put a team together that is made of people I can truly respect off the field.

Of course, that goodwill will be short lived if they don't produce wins, so ultimately the only way to build and keep together a "character" based team if to build a talented, character based team.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:20 AM   #6
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I think an all good guy approach is pretty dumb personally. No team has ever been successful only fielding good guys. You limit your talent pool far to much when doing this. For one, the majority of top athletes are cocky and think their crap doesn't stink. It is pretty easy to see why. They are treated like they are special from the time they are little because they are good at sports. It is why a guy like Cutler gets offended by trade talks. You need a front office that can keep control of a team and keep them focused even with different personalities. Again, try naming a successful team that works with our current formula. Even the Pats bring in questionable character.

That being said, I understand getting rid of people that get arrested. That is far different than having an attitude problem as you now get suspended for it. I think a large percentage of teams would have traded Marshall in our situation. I also think there isn't another team in this league that would have given away Cutler for the reasons we did. Oh well, its now time to sit back and see if this team knows what it is doing. I still have hopes that they are just trying to build a strong core of good character before they bring in some talented guys with problems. Those guys have helped many teams win SBs.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jhns View Post
I think an all good guy approach is pretty dumb personally. No team has ever been successful only fielding good guys. You limit your talent pool far to much when doing this. For one, the majority of top athletes are cocky and think their crap doesn't stink. It is pretty easy to see why. They are treated like they are special from the time they are little because they are good at sports. It is why a guy like Cutler gets offended by trade talks. You need a front office that can keep control of a team and keep them focused even with different personalities. Again, try naming a successful team that works with our current formula. Even the Pats bring in questionable character.

That being said, I understand getting rid of people that get arrested. That is far different than having an attitude problem as you now get suspended for it. I think a large percentage of teams would have traded Marshall in our situation. I also think there isn't another team in this league that would have given away Cutler for the reasons we did. Oh well, its now time to sit back and see if this team knows what it is doing. I still have hopes that they are just trying to build a strong core of good character before they bring in some talented guys with problems. Those guys have helped many teams win SBs.
The Colts beg to differ.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:27 AM   #8
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The Colts beg to differ.
and then rodney harrison went and shot some people...
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:31 AM   #9
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and then rodney harrison went and shot some people...
Yeah, I don't know what to make of that. I never thought Marvin(Not Rodney) was that kind of guy.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:33 AM   #10
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The article is nice but it presupposes that high character does not equal talent. A guy like Walter Peyton would disagree.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:34 AM   #11
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The Colts beg to differ.
They do not have the character thing this team has. They have the other thing I said, a front office that keeps control. Harrison is a thug and everyone thought he was great. Even Manning wouldn't fit in here. He has thrown his o-line under the bus when he had a bad game. Does that sound like the team player we want?

Anyways, try finding something that says the Colts passed on guys for character concerns. I have never heard that as one of their ways of doing business. The guy that was in charge for a lot of their good years was the same guy that rushed to Vicks defense and promoted getting him back in the league.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:35 AM   #12
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I think an all good guy approach is pretty dumb personally. No team has ever been successful only fielding good guys.
Besides Romanowski, the late 90s Broncos were about as well behaved as a football team could be, from a player perspective.

It's not so much just about being good citizens, it's about being smart.

Thing is, those usually go hand in hand.

Most of us long-time fans are happy to see the staff building a team full of smart players that can represent the team/city with some dignity.

There are always going to be incidents. But, there's a climactic difference between teams like Oakland and Indianapolis.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:35 AM   #13
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Easy to root for the Broncos with good character but as they say, "Nice guys finish last." I dont think we have that but we are getting character and talent with these players. I just hope they have NFL talent.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:42 AM   #14
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While I like the approach of the good character team and yes it makes them easy to root for does have drawbacks.

1. Look at NE Colts and now Denver if you win alot great but, still overall real boring teams. I like alittle flash attitude. mixed in.

2. Passing a great talent cause of character concerns that might not be that big of deal.

So you end up going better locker room guy with half the skill level sounds like a bad idea for a team lacking talent.

It will be interesting to see if good guys only is succesful

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Old 04-30-2010, 11:43 AM   #15
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F...U...C...K...

the

JETS
JETS
JETS.

That is all.

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Old 04-30-2010, 11:43 AM   #16
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Quote:
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There are always going to be incidents. But, there's a climactic difference between teams like Oakland and Indianapolis.
I completely agree. I'm saying it's not smart to go full "you have to be an angel to play here", or "we don't care what you are like as long as you can play". I think both approaches fail. You have to have a mix and be able to handle them. Again, it goes back to limiting your talent pool to much if you only go for character and a lack of leadership if you only go for talent. These are all just my theories though. I made them by watching what successful teams do. I could be wrong and I hope McDaniels proves that.

Last edited by jhns; 04-30-2010 at 11:45 AM..
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:45 AM   #17
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Don't worry, im sure the broncos still have more than one ahole on the team.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:48 AM   #18
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The Colts beg to differ.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:57 AM   #19
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Suprise, Santonio Holmes in trouble again. aparently he got kicked off an airplane for refusing to turn off his ipod...
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Old 04-30-2010, 12:01 PM   #20
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I completely agree. I'm saying it's not smart to go full "you have to be an angel to play here", or "we don't care what you are like as long as you can play". I think both approaches fail. You have to have a mix and be able to handle them. Again, it goes back to limiting your talent pool to much if you only go for character and a lack of leadership if you only go for talent. These are all just my theories though. I made them by watching what successful teams do. I could be wrong and I hope McDaniels proves that.

I think its important to have good character guys first, and then add the less then perfect players as time goes on and your program has proved being worth playing for.

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Old 04-30-2010, 12:20 PM   #21
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I don't think McDaniels is looking for "righteous" men as he is men that are smart and have good work ethics and lack stupid habits.
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:19 PM   #22
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Character is a key component in translating talent into results. Go figure.
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:44 PM   #23
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I though CB Perrish Cox was a bit rough around the edges. I was happy to see us take a risky pick, can't have all choir boys. A mix of personalities is good.
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:49 PM   #24
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Character is a key component in translating talent into results. Go figure.
This couldn't be further from the truth.

Maybe you can explain how this key component was at work when serial rapist QB Big Ben was passing to SB MVP, and troubled, Santonio Holmes.

Last edited by jhns; 04-30-2010 at 01:51 PM..
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:56 PM   #25
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This couldn't be further from the truth.

Maybe you can explain how this key component was at work when serial rapist QB Big Ben was passing to SB MVP, and troubled, Santonio Holmes.
both of whom are currently suspended for atleast 4 games apiece to start htis season off. talk about results.
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