I think I've got it figured out on Cris Carter. The reason he's so easy to dislike even when he's making sense and not actually trying to be condescending is because he's convinced that everything that comes out of his mouth is profound. Think about it. Have you ever heard Cris Carter waffle? Ever heard him indicate anything less than complete and absolute knowledge on whatever topic he's discussing? I mean, we all do it, we "say for pay" types, but once in a while, I've caught myself shrugging and I've seen other guys say they need more information. Cris Carter? Never. So I guess that explains why, every time he opens his mouth and waggles those pushbroom eyebrows, I want to blow holes in his contentions. This week, Carter was asked about not getting into the Hall of Fame. As Michael David Smith at PFT pointed out, only seven wideouts who began their careers after the 1970 merger have made it into Canton (Michael Irvin, Steve Largent, James Lofton, Art Monk, Jerry Rice, John Stallworth and Lynn Swann). On the outside looking in are guys like Tim Brown, Andre Reed and Carter. Carter chalked the lack of enshrined wideouts to the position being underloved. "I think the modern-day wide receiver, I would say that his skill level is not appreciated. Its not just about the numbers. Its the ability to catch the football and put your talent on display, Carter said in an interview with Michael Irvin. Here's the thing, Cris. Everybody loves watching wideouts play. Everybody marvels at their speed, athleticism and toughness. Nobody with an ounce of sense would contend that wide receiver, cornerback and, perhaps,running back are not the most athletic positions in football. But wide receiver is not an indispensable position. Quarterback is. Defensive end, linebacker, offensive line, quarterback. Critical. The closer you are to the ball at the snap, the more important you are to winning and losing on a weekly basis. Generally. For a wide receiver to be transcendent, he needs the coach to call the play, the line to block it, the quarterback to see it and then throw it. Then and only then does the receiver get his chance to put his "talent on display", as Carter says. Jerry Rice is probably the greatest football player of all time. But even he needed his Walsh, Montana and that Niners offensive line to let the talent shine. Randy Moss will be in the Hall of Fame before Cris Carter because Moss was transcendent, the greatest deep threat in NFL history. Cris Carter is Art Monk without the rings. I mean, Torry Holt has 100 fewer catches in five fewer seasons, 500 fewer yards and a Super Bowl ring. Both were Pro Bowl players and among the best in the league at their positions over six-year stretches. Everybody can tell wide receivers are talented. Everyone has an appreciation for them. But sorry Cris, you aren't the enlightened one here preaching to the unknowing rubes who don't get your subtle beauty.
Tom Brady delivered a video message last week at the funeral of Navy SEAL Kyle Milliken, a Maine native and former UConn track athlete killed in Somalia on May 5.
Bill Speros of The Boston Herald, in a column this Memorial Day weekend, wrote about Milliken and Brady's message.
Milliken ran track at Cheverus High School in Falmouth, Maine, and at UConn, where he graduated in 2001. Milliken lived in Virginia Beach, Va., with his wife, Erin, and two children. He other Navy SEALs participated in a training exercise at Gillette Stadium in 2011 where he met and posed for pictures with Brady.
Speros wrote that at Milliken’s funeral in Virginia Beach, Va., Brady's video offered condolences and thanked Milliken’s family for its sacrifice and spoke of how Milliken was considered a “glue guy” by UConn track coach Greg Roy.
Milliken had served in Iraq and Afghanistan, earning four Bronze Star Medals and was based in Virginia since 2004. He was killed in a nighttime firefight with Al-Shabaab militants near Barij, about 40 miles from the Somali capital of Mogadishu. He was 38.
The Pentagon said Milliken was the first American serviceman killed in combat in Somalia since the "Black Hawk Down" battle that killed 18 Americans in 1993.
In a statement to the Herald, Patriots owner Robert Kraft said: “It was an honor to host Kyle and his team for an exercise at Gillette Stadium in 2011. It gave new meaning to the stadium being known as home of the Patriots. We were deeply saddened to hear of Kyle’s death earlier this month.
“As Memorial Day weekend approaches, we are reminded of the sacrifices made by patriots like Kyle and so many others who have made the ultimate sacrifice to defend and protect our rights as Americans. Our thoughts, prayers and heartfelt appreciation are extended to the Milliken family and the many families who will be remembering lives lost this Memorial Day weekend.”
A. Sherrod Blakely breaks down the Celtics offseason wish list, and which players are the most likely that they could acquire.