NFL Preseason Headlines Making Us Wish Real Football Would Get Here Already

Posted on 31 July, 2014  in NFL

It was five o’clock in the morning on a Tuesday in July, so I did what millions of Americans do when they roll out of bed in the summer—I went searching for a football fix.

Before the coffee had even started brewing, the search engine was churning to find the latest NFL news and notes. In hopes of a little home cookin’, I jumped over to to see what was on the fire.

This has to be some kind of joke, right? Training camp starts this week. This week! This can’t be all there is to talk about in the NFL right now.

Roger Goodell has to be behind this. He’s been too damn quiet about his 18-game regular season this year, planting the seed deeper and deeper into our football consciousness until the idea sprouts organically, like we, as a collective fanbase, somehow thought of it ourselves.

Pettine: Browns will name starting QB by third preseason game
Dareus agrees to enter substance-abuse program, attorney says
Manziel jersey tops league in sales
Tebow shows he’s staying in shape, hoping for NFL call
Dungy: ‘I would not have drafted Michael Sam’
Titans’ Mettenberger sucker-punched at local bar, owner says

If these are the headlines we get in late July, that can only mean one thing: more football. We need more football.

More football would mean training camp would have to start earlier, which would mean a shorter offseason, which would mean headlines like we got this week—headlines that adorn the front page of the league website—would simply not exist.

Let’s take a closer look at the stories the NFL is promoting. There are 10 different links to fantasy football content, because as the lead story on the site explains, “It’s not too soon to starting thinking about fantasy football.”

There’s a feature on the wide-open NFC North, which actually sounds like a great preseason read on a lazy July morning.

Then there are the “Latest Headlines” on, which include such gems as which quarterback will start for the Browns, Johnny Football jerseys sales, the release of a former third-round pick, the retirement of an offensive lineman, unbridled preseason optimism from a member of the (fill-in-the-blank) front office and Tim Tebow staying in shape in case an NFL team comes calling.

You know, a typical NFL day in July.

Oh, right, and Tony Dungy saying he wouldn’t want the distraction of a gay player in his locker room.

There’s that too.

NFL: Manziel all about football at camp

Posted on 30 July, 2014  in NFL

BEREA, Ohio — There were No. 2 cheap nfl jerseys everywhere, ringing the practice fields in various shapes, sizes and colors.

On the first day of training camp, Browns fans came out by the thousands, many of them to get their first live look at the popular and polarizing quarterback who electrified college football and who may one day lead Cleveland back to pro football glory.

They all came to see Johnny Manziel.

Strutting around the field with his usual swagger, Manziel went through his first training camp practice Saturday, a workout that finally allowed the focus to be on his playing ability after months of his social life making headlines. A day after acknowledging he “made some rookie mistakes” with his off-the-field exploits, Manziel zipped passes and showed some of the elusiveness that earned him his Johnny Football nickname while at Texas A&M.

“I have fun playing this game,” Manziel said. “I have fun going out on this field playing football. It’s what I live for, it’s what I love to do.”

On Friday, Manziel, who will battle Brian Hoyer for Cleveland’s starting job, said he wished he had done some things differently during the off-season, when his wild weekends partying in Las Vegas nightclubs brought he and the Browns some unwanted publicity. Manziel vowed to be all about football now, and his every move will be dissected over the next few weeks as he and Hoyer compete.

Browns owner Jimmy Haslam hopes Manziel sticks to his word and changes his behavior.

“Johnny said it himself, he made some mistakes,” said Haslam. “We expect better from him. I’m sure he’ll perform and now we’re anxious to see what he can do on the field, which is what really counts.”

Haslam, whose Pilot Flying J truck-stop company has been at the center of a federal investigation for fraud, rattled off the names of famous athletes such as LeBron James, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Derek Jeter as examples of athletes Manziel should try to model himself after.

“The really great athletes make their news on the field, not off the field,” Haslam said.

Hours before the Browns opened the gates of their training complex, fans waited patiently in lines for a chance to get a prime spot to see Manziel.

At 9:22 a.m., Manziel emerged through the door of Cleveland’s locker room and made his way onto the field. As Manziel came into view, fans wearing “Johnny Football T-shirts” and No. 2 cheap nfl jerseys paypal cheered as House of Pain’s “Jump Around” blared through loudspeakers.

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