Amani Toomer: Ray Lewis is a caricature of himself, it’s ‘exhausting’

Make no mistake about it: Super Bowl XLVII is about Ray Lewis more than any other single player on the Baltimore Ravens. The entire team deserves credit for getting to New Orleans, but Lewis is the big storyline. Whether it’s his impending retirement, his alleged use of performance-enhancing substances or simply his obnoxious flare for the dramatic, Ray finds a way to hog the spotlight.

On Wednesday, former New York Giants wide receiver Amani Toomer criticized Lewis for what he called an “exhausting” routine.

“It’s definitely all about him,” Toomer told USA Today Sports. “Once a guy goes to the center of the field, goes into the victory formation on the last play of his last home game. … I just don’t think the Giants or any organization I’ve ever been a part of, even growing up, would allow somebody to single themselves out like that.

“If you single yourself out after you make a play, that’s one thing. But to walk out on the field reminds me of the WWE, like The Rock coming out. You’re becoming a caricature of yourself. It’s exhausting. I don’t know why somebody would want that.”

Outside of Maryland, I think most people are getting pretty tired of Ray. Wes Welker’s wife spoke for a lot of people when she ripped Lewis for not being a good role model, and Toomer hinted that he felt a similar way about Lewis’ constant religious preaching while also praising him for being a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

“If you want to say you’re Mr. Religious and all of that, have a clean record,” Toomer said. “Don’t say all of that stuff if you know there’s stuff that might come back. Those are the things that, when I look at him, I just think hypocrisy.”

My thoughts exactly. If you think it’s all about Ray now, wait until you see the television coverage if Baltimore wins on Sunday. Lewis’ Ravens teammates would be thrilled to hoist the Vince Lombardi Trophy, but they might as well deliver their comments through the veteran linebacker and have him relay them to the media.

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Amani Toomer: Tony Romo is probably a better quarterback than Eli Manning

Prior to last season, there were probably a number of people who believed that Tony Romo was a better quarterback than Eli Manning. Now, that population is nearing extinction. Manning is a two-time Super Bowl MVP and Romo has won one playoff game in his career. Last season, Eli led more fourth-quarter comebacks than anyone in the league and lit up the stat sheet in the process. Despite Manning’s tremendous success, Amani Toomer still believes Romo is the more skilled quarterback.

“Tony Romo is probably, if you look at it statistically, he’s probably the best quarterback in the NFC East,” Toomer said on SiriusXM NFL Radio according to Pro Football Talk. “You look at Eli Manning and what he does in the fourth quarter, but you talk about consistency, talking about 31 touchdowns and only 10 interceptions, that guy can play.

“I’m talking about, for me, if I wanted a guy that is going to throw less interceptions and be more productive, higher completion percentage, I’m going to go with Tony Romo. At crunch time he’s not as good as Eli but every other time he’s pretty darn good.”

Consider Toomer an endangered species. Romo is certainly an above-average quarterback and probably even a bit underrated in terms of skill because of some of the mistakes he has made in the clutch. In fact, one Giants defender recently credited Romo’s choking for the recent success New York has had over Dallas. At this point, however, Manning and Romo aren’t even in the same class.

Romo has had a couple of better seasons statistically which is what Toomer is referring to, but that probably speaks more to differing offenses and styles of play that it does to who is better. Statistically the two are similar. In terms of achievements it’s not even close. Based on some of the crap that has come out of his mouth in the past, I’m not surprised by Toomer’s opinion.

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Trevor Pryce calls Amani Toomer’s comments about Kurt Warner ‘idiotic’

Kurt Warner recently said he would not want his sons playing football because of the health risks involved, and we don’t blame him. As a parent, Warner has a right to express his opinion and choose what he thinks is best for the safety of his children — regardless of his job title. However, his opinion has been met with more than a little opposition. Amani Toomer blasted him for “trashing” the game and Merril Hoge said the comments made Warner sound uneducated. Two-time Super Bowl champion and four-time Pro Bowler Trevor Pryce strongly disagrees.

“What Amani Toomer said is probably the most idiotic thing I’ve ever heard,” Pryce said on ROME according to Eye on Football. “And here’s why: the fact that Kurt Warner said he didn’t want his kids playing football should be predicated on one thing — he didn’t want his kids playing NFL football. And that’s a big difference. Little league football? Every kid wants to play little league football.

“But there’s more than one way to play football. You can play flag football, you can play Madden, you can do a lot of things. I think you have to quantify it by saying NFL football is dangerous — more so than middle school football, high school football or even college football. But that adds up. By the time you get to the NFL you’re probably damaged goods.”

Again, I don’t think there’s any debating the physical risks the sport of football poses when compared to something like, say, basketball. Ankle injuries and knee injuries are certainly common in basketball, but head injuries that would stay with you for life are far less likely. It’s one thing to disagree with Warner’s comments in general, but it’s another to do so because you believe his job as an NFL Network analyst is to be a puppet. Toomer and Hoge sound like idiots because of the reasons they gave for their stance.

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Amani Toomer says Kurt Warner is trying to trash the game of football

As a father, Kurt Warner says he would not want his sons to play football. With the awareness that has been raised over the past several years in terms of concussions and head injuries, his opinion is one that is shared by many parents across the country. Football is a violent game, and some people would prefer that their children play a sport that is less aggressive.

When discussing the Junior Seau tragedy on the Dan Patrick Show Thursday morning, Warner said there is “no question in (his) mind” that he would prefer that his sons not play football. Former Giants wide receiver Amani Toomer thought those comments were highly hypocrtical.

“I’d definitely have my son to play football,” Toomer said on NBC SportsTalk Thursday according to Pro Football Talk. “That’s what the Toomer family does. We all play football. But what this reminds me of is the guy at the basketball court, who once he gets done playing takes the ball and ruins the game for everybody else. I think Kurt Warner needs to keep his opinions to himself when it comes to this. Everything that he’s gotten in his life has come from playing football. He works at the NFL Network right now. For him to try and trash the game, it seems to me that it’s just a little disingenuous to me.”

Warner has seven children, so he has as much of a right to speak candidly as a father as anyone else does — regardless of how he made his money or who employs him. If I made my money dealing drugs, that doesn’t mean I want my children following the same career path. Before you fly off the handle and accuse me of comparing the NFL to a drug dealing agency, I’m not. I’m simply pointing out that Toomer’s reasoning is flawed in terms of why he thinks Warner should keep his opinion to himself. Then again, flawed reasoning is something Toomer has found himself extremely familiar with over the past few months.

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Amani Toomer doesn’t think Mark Sanchez will start the entire season

With the 2012 NFL season a full five months away, people are already speculating about how the quarterback situation in New York will shake out. Now that the Jets have added Tim Tebow to the mix, you have to wonder if Mark Sanchez will be on the shortest leash of his career when the season begins. If Sanchez struggles, the Jets have a backup waiting who has won games at the NFL level. It doesn’t hurt that Tebow is a marketing machine. With that in mind, it is fair to wonder if Sanchez will make it through the entire season as New York’s starter. Amani Toomer doesn’t see it happening.

“I don’t see Sanchez being the starter for the entire season,” Toomer told reporters Monday according to the NY Daily News. “(Sanchez) is not a great quarterback. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that.”

For someone who has led his team to two AFC Championships in his three seasons as a starter, Sanchez takes a lot of heat. That being said, Toomer is right. Sanchez is not a great quarterback and I don’t think any of the Jets coaches would argue that he is. Not to mention, Tebow isn’t only going to be utilized as a backup. Rex Ryan and Tony Sparano plan to give him the ball up to 20 times a game`.

What happens if those 20 snaps are highly successful? The Jets plan to use both quarterbacks, but if the offense is clicking with Tebow on the field it’s only a matter of time before Sanchez is watching from the sidelines. If you believe Urban Meyer, you shouldn’t be surprised if Tebow takes the starting job from Sanchez at some point.

Amani Toomer on Jeremy Shockey: He’s a ‘bad teammate, worse person’

Jeremy Shockey is a free agent, and from the sound of it he is hoping time truly does heal all wounds. Shockey did not leave New York on good terms. During the team’s Super Bowl run in 2007, he suffered a broken leg and was not able to play down the stretch of the season nor in the playoffs. Many believe that distanced him from the team. Then, there was also his discontent with the way the Giants were using him, as Shockey believed he should do less blocking and more pass-catching.

According to the NY Daily News, Shockey is now interested in reuniting with the G-Men. Amani Toomer, one of the tight end’s former New York teammates, thinks that would be a terrible idea.

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Amani Toomer Says the Patriots’ Three Super Bowls Need an Asterisk (Audio)

Amani Toomer is not the first person to say that the three Super Bowls the Patriots won are tainted because of Spygate. He won’t be the last to say it, either. Many people have said the Patriots have to prove they can win a championship without videotaping opponents’ signals, whether videotaping led directly to their wins in Super Bowls 36, 38, and 39 or not. There are even people who believe the Pats went 18-1 rather than 19-0 because they could not videotape their opponent. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but Toomer’s logic about the Patriots needing an asterisk next to their three Super Bowl victories is ridiculous. I’ll let you listen before sharing my opinion. Here is the clip of Toomer on The Jim Rome Show discussing the Patriots’ legacy:

Toomer saying the Patriots cheated is one thing. If you believe they only won three Super Bowls because they broke the rules, that’s fine.  It’s at the 1:10 mark that his reasoning becomes absurd.  If the Patriots cheated to win three Super Bowls, they cheated to win three Super Bowls.  How does it make sense that winning one in the “post Spygate” era with a completely different team would validate the first three?

I’m not saying the first three are invalid, but Toomer’s assertion that winning on Sunday would mean the Patriots could argue they “probably would have won (the others) anyway” is just idiotic.  You either believe the Patriots won as a result of cheating, or you don’t.  Whether they win or lose Super Bowl 46 should not influence your opinion.