Terrell Suggs: NFL lockout was the time of my life, minicamps are a burden

For most people across the NFL, the lockout was seen as a negative. Less offseason training meant less time to prepare. The potential of games being cancelled would have meant huge revenue losses for teams, television stations, and local businesses. For Terrell Suggs, however, the lockout was a vacation. In fact, Suggs believes the lockout is partially responsible for Baltimore’s successful season.

“Last year, to be totally honest with you, I had the time of my life during the lockout and wasn’t in a hurry to get back to work,” Suggs said during an interview with WHB in Kansas City on Thursday. “I think that’s why, in total, I ended up having the season that I did. A lot of guys ended up pushing themselves too hard and ended up getting hurt trying to get ready for minicamps and OTAs. Fortunately we didn’t have that burden on our shoulders and that’s why I think I had a great year.”

With the way the new CBA is written, players will not be required to work as hard next season with two-a-day practices having been eliminated. During the season, we heard players blame the lockout for their injuries and admit they failed to remain in shape during the football hiatus. Larry Fitzgerald’s father even alluded to the lockout when he ripped Early Doucet, saying the Cardinals receiver did not work hard enough because of it.

As you can see, Suggs’ opinion is one that is not shared by many. I’m sure plenty of players enjoyed themselves during the extended offseason, but there was more harm than good caused by the lockout. Something tells me Suggs doesn’t mind that his opinion puts him in the minority.

Chris Cooley Blames the Lockout for His Season-Ending Injury

Perhaps it just seems this way, but it feels like the NFL has had more significant injuries than usual this season. At least one impact player — such as Jamaal Charles, Kenny Britt, or Tim Hightower — seems to go down with a season-ending injury per week. Others like Peyton Manning were not able to improve their health enough throughout the offseason to take the field.  Could the lockout be to blame for what seems like a surplus of serious injuries?  Chris Cooley thinks so.

Cooley had been banged up for most of the season before the Redskins placed him on injured reserve this week.  Having had knee surgery in the offseason, Cooley said he thinks he would have been able to rehab more effectively had there not been a work stoppage.

“I feel 100 percent – and I’m not blaming anybody. I feel one hundred percent that I am a casualty for the season, of the lockout,” Cooley said according to the Washington Post via Pro Football Talk. “I think it was a shame that they didn’t let players who had surgery spend time with the doctors and trainers that they trust on a daily basis. I wish I could’ve. I think what I went through in July, I could’ve went through in March.”

The lockout obviously didn’t result in Cooley’s trash talking skills being dulled down, but he may have a point.  Although I doubt Peyton Manning was not provided with every possible tool for rehabbing that there is, working with unfamiliar doctors could in theory hinder the rehab process.  Some players even admitted they did not condition as much as they should have during the lockout, so that could certainly lead to an increase in injuries.  Unfortunately, increased risk of injury is on the list of lockout consequences.

Cardinals’ Dan Williams: I Did Not Work Out Hard During the Lockout

If you believe that there is something to be said for honesty, you’ll love Dan Williams.  Williams, who was a first-round pick for the Cardinals back in 2010, showed up to camp out of shape and overweight following the lockout.  The coaching staff was obviously not pleased with the 334-pounder’s condition, but what can you say to a guy who fully admits he should have worked harder during the offseason?

While Drew Brees was taking matters into his own hands with the Saints, Williams was just coasting along.  Bart Scott is worried about the league going soft without two-a-day practices, and he may have a point if guys like Williams can’t motivate themselves without the help of a team strength and conditioning coach.

“I’ll be the first one to say, I didn’t work out like a (strength coach) John Lott workout,” Williams admitted to the Arizona Republic. “I should have done more. Next year I’ll know the proper steps and I’ll put this behind me … I messed up and it won’t happen again.”

The defensive tackle added that he is not in football shape and playing at an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level doesn’t help.  Again, there isn’t really much the Cardinals can do.  Obviously Williams knows he screwed up and should have worked harder, but the fact that he has acknowledged that likely means he’s willing to put in the work to get to where he needs to be.  Some guys worked hard during the lockout and others had to pick up watering jobs. That’s the nature of the beast during a work stoppage.

NFL Lockout Reportedly Over After Sides Agree to Terms of New CBA

The best kept secret for sports fans seems to have finally come through: the lockout is over. There were several hints that the players would approve the terms of the new CBA on Monday, and FOX NFL reporter Jay Glazer confirmed the news early Monday morning.

Glazer tweeted at 3:53am Monday morning that “Sources say 2 sides this hour FINALLY agree to terms of new CBA.” He added some important details on the timeline saying “Facilities open Tues, camp starts Thurs for 10 teams, Fri for 10, wkend for 12.”

Glazer also announced on JT The Brick’s show on FOX Sports Radio that the players hope to meet Tuesday and Wednesday to recertify as a union. You may recall that the Players Association had to decertify in order to sue the NFL owners. Once they recertify, they can “negotiate terms for the league’s drug programs, player discipline fines, workers comp, etc,” according to Glazer.

Here’s the audio from Glazer’s announcement on JT the Brick’s show:

We had heard for quite some time that the lockout was expected to end, but it’s no less exciting to hear this. I’m sure I can speak for everyone who enjoys this site by saying we’re absolutely stoked for camps to open and free agency to begin. Long live the NFL!

Bart Scott: Players ‘Wimping Out’ by Eliminating Two-a-Day Practices

On Tuesday Vikings punter Chris Kluwe complained that a handful of players were holding up the new CBA for selfish purposes. Later that night, another player expressed his dissatisfaction with one aspect of the CBA as well. That player is Jets linebacker Bart Scott. Scott is unhappy that the NFLPA got the owners to agree to essentially eliminate two-a-day practices during training camp.

“I think it’s wimping out; making football more soft,” Scott told The Star-Ledger (via NFL.com). “No reason to try and make camp easy.”

“I get concerned you’re making football players weaker because you don’t push them past that threshold. … I get concerned with the same thing with the quarterback stuff, that they turn it into flag football; they turn it into little pansy stuff.”

“Two-a-days, it’s what football is all about,” Scott said. “It’s about endurance, pain, will, putting yourself through something when your body is telling you it doesn’t want to go. Your mind controlling your body. That’s what camp is all about. With one-a-days, guys might not be in as good of shape as they would have been. Camp tears you down, and then a smart coach starts pulling back in enough time that allows players’ bodies to build back up.”

See, this is the territory we get in where you worry if the players got too much power. Things need to be even, things need to be fair. Coaches can’t feel like the players will pull out their contracts Roger Dorn-style if they’re asked to practice more than they want, even if this was done for player safety-purposes. As Scott said, this is taking away reps from coaches. Let’s just hope players have the same attitude as Scott where they want to practice to get better.

Chris Kluwe Calls Drew Brees, Peyton Manning ‘Douchebags’ (Audio)

Vikings punter Chris Kluwe is one of the most outspoken players in the league. He’s not too afraid to call out inconsistencies within the NFL when he needs to, or mock Roger Goodell with a funny drawing. Now he’s gone a step farther, calling out some of his fellow players for reportedly holding up the CBA because of perceived personal greed. Here’s what Kluwe wrote in a tweet:

Shortly after Kluwe’s tweet gained attention, he joined What’s Wright with Nick Wright on 610 Sports in KC to talk about his tweet. Before we present analysis of his comments, you must hear Kluwe read his tweet. Awesome audio:

Kluwe went on to explain why he called those players out. In case you’re unfamiliar, it stems from a Yahoo! Sports report that said Vincent Jackson and Logan Mankins want to be compensated for sitting out games last season. The other part of the report is that Brees and Manning reportedly want to be exempt from the franchise tag. That’s what led to Kluwe’s reaction.

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Jeremy Shockey: Players Told Lockout Will End Thursday, Camp Begins Friday

Jeremy Shockey has provided us with the best news possible. The tight end told Busted Coverage in an interview that the lockout will end Thursday, and that players have been told to report to camp on Friday. From his phone conversation with BC:

“The deal will be done Thursday and we’re being told to report to Charlotte for a three-day camp the 22nd through 25th. Obviously the details have to be completed, but this deal is done. The Hall of Fame game is a go. It’s a win-win for both sides.”

Shockey’s words coincide with what we’ve been hearing all weekend, but it sure is a huge relief to hear it from a player. They may have some details to work out, but it looks like things are almost set. Now all we have to do is start preparing for the actual season again. Who even knew Shockey had signed with the Panthers???