While a ravenous snow storm pillages the East Coast, the NFL goes on in sunny Miami with Super Bowl XLIV. For those of you who don’t know your Roman Numerals, Sunday marks the 44th Super Bowl. As is always the case in Super Bowl week, there is much more news circulating other than game announcements.
Even after Coach Haraugh reiterated that he believes that Ed Reed will return, some news came out today again, being that Reed’s nerve impingement has ‘gotten worse’. Reed is continuing to consult with doctors and think about his decision for next season. He continues to insist that his opinion about retirement was not impacted by the frustrating loss in Indianapolis three weeks ago.
Ladanian Tomlinson has said that he has “played his last game as a Charger.” After nine years starring in the blue and gold, Tomlinson will not return to the Bolts in 2010. This means that Darren Sproles may take over as lead back and the Chargers will probably have to add another runner to complete their backfield tandem. This is where it gets interesting. Other than Lendale White, the highest profile guy that might be on the market is Willis McGahee. Thought to be an expensive backup, McGahee’s contract might be released this offseason. If so, is it possible that the Ravens might be interested in Ladanian Tomlinson? This is purely speculative, but it could turn out to be a situation.
The final two pieces of big news today came from Roger Goodell’s speech in Miami about the state of the NFL and its future. The first is that Donte Stallworth will be reinstated for next season. After being suspended for the whole season while serving jail time for DUI Manslaughter in 2009, Stallworth will return in the first season of the new decade. It’s unlikely he’ll be even close to his old form, but if the Ravens lose three receievers (Clayton, Williams, Washington), Stallworth would add much-needed depth and ability to the receiving corps. Again, that is purely speculative, and many people close to the Ravens have said that it probably won’t happen. If the receiving situation gets tricky however, surprises could come.
Lastly, Roger Goodell addressed the possible 2011 lockout. The commish says “the idea that owners would be in support of a work stoppage is false.” Remember that if a deal is not struck on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement by March, 2010 goes uncapped, and if next offseason, there is another stall in negotiations, 2011 would be a season without football. The thing that could give the idea that the owners are in favor of a lockout is that no matter if there’s football or not, the NFL will receive $5 billion in TV deals. Owners getting money without having to pay players? Sounds like a good deal for them. More on this will definitely be coming in the next few days.