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Which Will Cam Newton Take First: Jimmy Clausen’s Job or His Number?

When the Carolina Panthers made quarterback Cam Newton the first overall pick in the NFL Draft, Jimmy Clausen sent his congratulations on twitter saying “Congrats to Cam Newton! Welcome to the Panthers.” Clausen may have been genuine sending his congratulations, but he can’t be too happy about the pick because this is the guy who is going to take his job.

Clausen was brutal in his first year as Carolina’s starter. He threw for just three touchdowns while turning the ball over 11 times (nine interceptions and two fumbles). He never once threw for more than 200 yards in a game. The team went 2-14. Carolina only invested a second-round pick on Clausen, so they’re not on the hook for much money if they don’t play him. It all adds up to Newton becoming the team’s starter. The only question is whether or not he becomes the team’s starter before he gets Clausen’s jersey.

Cam Newton wore jersey number two at Auburn — the same number Clausen wore for the Panthers last year. Cam wants to continue wearing the number and that presents an issue. “It’s mine right now,” Clausen said of the No.2 jersey. “We’ll see what happens.”

What will happen is Cam will make him a really nice offer of money or jewelry or gifts in order to get the jersey number. Who could have imagined that the same guy who was the Golden Child coming out of high school would have to end up surrendering his jersey number to a higher-rated quarterback? I guess it’s all Karma and coming back to The Jimmy for flashing his rings and taking his stretch limo to his Notre Dame announcement coming out of high school. Couldn’t be happening to a nicer guy.

Alexa Flutie is a New England Patriots Cheerleader (and Doug’s Daughter)

Last week, we brought you the stunning Bianca Tai La Russa, who is Cardinals manager Tony La Russa’s daughter and was recently named to the Oakland Raiders cheerleading squad.  Oh yeah, she also happens to be insanely hot (check her out here).  This week, we are fortunate enough to have had another sports daughter join an NFL cheerleading squad, this time the daughter of Boston College legend and former NFL quarterback Doug Flutie.

As the Boston Globe pointed out, via NESN.com, Alexa Flutie was named to the 2011 New England Patriots cheerleading team on Tuesday.  As a result, I may spend a couple less minutes watching football at Gillette Stadium next season (if there is one) and a little more time keeping an eye on the sidelines.

Here are some more pictures of Alexa Flutie, who I must say appears to be very deserving of the honor.

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Rashard Mendenhall’s Incredibly Ignorant 9/11, Osama bin Laden Tweets

The fact that we live in a world where a few strokes of a keypad can change the entire perception of a person never ceases to amaze me. With social media tools like Twitter at their disposal, athletes and celebrities like Rashard Mendenhall can destroy their public image in less than 140 characters. The ease of the task does not, however, excuse what Mendenhall had to say on his Twitter account Monday night.

After witnessing acts like Phillies fans celebrating the death of Osama bin Laden and college students taking to the streets to party upon hearing the news, Mendenhall decided to share his thoughts on 9/11 and the man who was almost certainly responsible for the attacks.

“What kind of person celebrates death?” Mendenhall tweeted. “It’s amazing how people can HATE a man they have never even heard speak. We’ve only heard one side…”

While most of us disagree with that, I suppose it isn’t that bad if you are someone who believes in forgiveness and is against death as a form of punishment.  Fair enough, but what Mendenhall wrote next is truly mind-boggling.

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Patriots and Eagles Swapped 6th-Round Draft Picks to Keep Trade Streak Alive

Bill Belichick is known as a boring, unfriendly, stick in the mud type of coach. Andy Reid is considered to be friendlier and forgiving. When you think of the two of them, you wouldn’t consider them to be frequent trading partners, but that is actually the case.

We learned over draft weekend that the Pats and Eagles swapped 6th-round picks — New England’s 193rd for Philly’s 194th — in order to keep a streak alive.

Since Belichick took over the Patriots in 2000, the two men have made a draft-day trade every single year.

Belichick explained the decision to the media in a way only he can. “We talked to the Eagles,” Belichick deadpanned. “We wanted to make the trade, they wanted to make the trade.”

Though you wouldn’t peg Belichick and Reid to be friends based on their seemingly dissimilar personalities, they actually are buddies. Maybe it’s this type of sense of humor that other coaches around the league need to adopt in order to be as well-tenured as they are.

Bill Parcells’ Criteria for Drafting a Quarterback Out of College

Like any other talent evaluator, Bill Parcells has had his share of misses. He’s even admitted to making a few mistakes. But Parcells has also shown an undeniable ability to turn franchises around and build successful teams. Some of that is accomplished through free agency, but most of that is done through the draft.

I’ve long heard about Parcells’ strict criteria for drafting a quarterback out of college. Chad Henne passed the test and so did Pat White, so obviously they were well accomplished collegiately but turned into busts. Whether or not you think the criteria are reasonable is up for debate, but here are his guidelines as he shared during his Draft Confidential on ESPN via Dan Pompei:

1) At least a three-year starter
2) Started at least 30 games
3) Won at least 20 games
4) At least a 2:1 touchdown-to-interception ratio
5) Completion percentage better than 60%
6) Is a senior
7) Is graduating

Andy Dalton and Ricky Stanzi are the only quarterbacks from this year’s class who passed Parcells’ test while Greg McElroy fell three starts short. Dalton went 35th overall to the Bengals while Stanzi was selected 100 picks later by the Chiefs. McElroy (and his hot sister) went 208th overall to the Jets.

As for current NFL quarterbacks, here’s how they stack up:

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Arizona Cardinals Reportedly Had Deal in Place for Kevin Kolb Before Draft

If you are a Cardinals fan and wondering why the team didn’t select a quarterback in the NFL draft despite needing one, we may have our answer. Pro Football Weekly reports that the Eagles and Cardinals had a “potential deal in place to trade QB Kevin Kolb … but those plans changed when 2011 draft picks were not allowed to be dealt.” They add in their report that the trade talks could reignite down the road, and I imagine that is the case.

We knew a year ago that the Cardinals did not seem comfortable with their quarterback situation entering the season. Derek Anderson’s awful play and outburst did not help matters, and Max Hall played horribly. John Skelton could be a decent backup, but you don’t want any of those three guys being your starting quarterback if your goal is to win. Even analyst Jimmy Johnson told us personnel was the problem in Arizona, not coaching. So it makes sense for them to pursue an upgrade at the most important position on the field.

Kevin Kolb has shown accuracy and an ability to produce in his limited time as Philadelphia’s starting quarterback. Even though he’s a West Coast Offense QB (not the style the Cardinals run), he’d be a big upgrade over anything else they have on the roster.

We know Kolb would like to be traded to Arizona and that Larry Fitzgerald also wants it to happen. When league business is eventually cleared to resume, I would anticipate a deal getting done. That is unless someone else (Seattle perhaps?) can come up with a better package to offer the Eagles.

Chest bump to Evan Silva for the tip

Bruce Carter Eats a Ton of McDonald’s

Former North Carolina linebacker Bruce Carter is a physical monster.  The 238-pound wrecking ball runs a 4.39 in the 40 and can bench press 440 pounds.  That alone could win him the title of biggest freak in the nation, but the UNC records Carter holds with a 40.5-inch vertical and 374 power clear were enough to cement him at the top of Bruce Feldman’s college football “Freaks” list.

There must be a secret, right?  According to Carter, the secret is McDonald’s.  If you thought Tim Lincecum’s In-N-Out Burger order was crazy, check out what Carter said he orders at McDonald’s almost every single day.

“I eat a lot of McDonald’s and fast foods, but I do work out real hard,” he explained. “I usually get three double cheeseburgers, medium fries, large tea, and a six-piece McNuggets. I don’t think eating healthy as far as eating salads and that stuff works for me.”

Apparently not.  If Carter eats that much McDonald’s almost every day, I’m inclined to think he would weigh a solid 155 if he just ate salads and healthy foods.  The most amazing part to me is how a person can move after eating that much.  When I eat any type of fast food I immediately turn into a snail.  Given some of the records Carter has set, I’m guessing he rarely feels sluggish.

Look on the bright side — at least McDonald’s is helping his career.  Micky D’s is dangerous for a guy like Brandon Marshall, right?