Ready for some 3-technique football dressed in rave green?

September 6, 2013 

Another NFL season kicked off Thursday in Denver, home of a Broncos team the 2012 Baltimore Ravens eliminated from the playoffs.

The Ravens went on to win the Super Bowl, an achievement usually worth home-field advantage in the next season’s opener. Why were the Ravens on the road?

Seems there was a scheduling conflict with the Baltimore Orioles, who play in an adjacent stadium and share a parking lot with the Ravens. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell asked the Orioles to reschedule their night game against the White Sox, but the O’s wouldn’t budge.

So there, that’s all there is to know about how the league’s defending champions ended up in Denver for the “Trading Places” opener.

As for the some of other topics regarding the 2013 NFL season, I’ll be happy to supply answers when answers are available.

But after an offseason that never really seemed like an offseason – the NFL dominated the winter, the spring, the summer – all I’ve got are questions:

Is former Seahawks quarterback Matt Flynn (two career starts since 2008) doomed to spend the rest of his career on the sideline, the embodiment of the poor, unfortunate soul who couldn’t catch a break?

Or is Flynn (guaranteed $6.5 million by the Raiders) the luckiest man on the face of the earth?

Is there a more nightmarish headline than “Ray Lewis Pondering Comeback”?

I mean, besides “Maloof

Brothers To Purchase Seahawks”?

Am I alone in thinking those “rave” green jerseys the Seahawks wore for one game in 2009 are worth a second look?

Forty years from now, will retired NFL players share memories as vivid, nostalgic and funny as the late Art Donovan and Alex Karras did?

Speaking of Karras: The Lions defensive tackle, who missed one game during his 12-season career, was named to the league’s All-Decade team for the 1960s. How is he not in the Hall of Fame?

If a snow storm hits New York City on Feb. 2, will it put the idea of future winter-weather Super Bowls to an end? Or will the record television ratings – TV viewers, for some reason, are mesmerized by football games played in inclement weather – assure that Denver, Chicago and Seattle join the Super Bowl rotation?

How long will it take for somebody to deliver a cheap shot on Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper as payback for that infamous concert rant? Even if he manages to stay healthy, his season figures to be a 180-degree contrast from the “Life of Riley,” a radio series (and, later, a movie and TV show) about a man whose life is ideally carefree.

I understand why the Seahawks have created a defensive position called the “Leo,” a hybrid linebacker/defensive end. A more apt name would be “Len,” but I get it. What I don’t get is why are defensive tackles who line up outside the offensive guard termed something as intentionally obtuse as “3 technique” players?

Why does one position get a cool name like “Leo”, and the other gets a name more complicated than a slow-motion analysis of a golf swing?

Will the world still turn if the Washington Redskins acknowledge that this is 2013, and it may be time to change the team’s polarizing nickname to, say, ’Skins?

With all due respect to Michael Robinson, the 2011 Pro Bowl fullback recently released by the Seahawks, is there any distinction more specious than “Pro Bowl fullback”? (Reminds me of a second-place ribbon I once won in a park-district chess tournament. Three of us entered, and the kid I beat couldn’t tell the difference between the knight and the bishop.)

When will Mike Holmgren realize his musings as a regular KJR contributor are pure gold? When will he understand he’s got the potential to serve as host of the most intelligent, most insightful, most gripping talk-radio show we’ve ever heard?

Are you interested in my fantasy team? No? That makes us even, because I’m not interested in yours.

(Full disclosure: I don’t participate in any fantasy leagues. I’ve got this stodgy notion that there’s only one statistic worth monitoring, and it’s broken down to letters: W or L.)

How is it that the NFL, the most lucrative professional sports league in the history of the world, tolerates a largely ignored team in Jacksonville while steering clear of Los Angeles?

Who will be chosen to raise the 12th-man flag when the Seahawks take on the San Francisco 49ers, a week from Sunday, in the home opener?

Sorry, getting ahead of myself here. The Seahawks’ first order of business is to beat the Carolina Panthers, which brings me to the most pressing question of all.

Can the Seahawks, once and for all, put that biological-clock phobia about 10 a.m. kickoffs to bed?

We’ll find out Sunday, when Leo lines up next to the 3-technique and all the talking and all the conjecture is finally muted for a real football game.

Does it get any better than that?

john.mcgrath@ thenewstribune.com

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