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Tony Dungy: Titans targeted Peyton Manning when Gregg Williams was there

Tony Dungy believes Gregg Williamsbounty system targeted Peyton Manning as far back as Williams’ tenure as defensive coordinator for the Titans from 1997-2000, and possibly again with the Redskins in 2006.

“I know they had them in Tennessee,” Dungy said in a text to Pro Football Talk. Although Williams reportedly had a bounty system in place during during his time in Washington, Dungy added he wasn’t sure whether bounties were offered when the Redskins injured Manning during a game over five years ago.

Dungy said during a Football Night in America broadcast last year that he believed Manning’s neck problems may have started with a hit by former Redskins defensive end Phillip Daniels in 2006. Williams was the Redskins’ defensive coordinator at the time. Manning was shaken up on the play, which wdid not draw a flag but resulted in a $5,000 fine for Daniels.

The allegation that Williams’ bounty system may have sparked Manning’s neck problems is very significant but, for now, still unfounded. Then again — just speculating here — if Williams acknowledged having a pay-for-play system with the Saints, and another coach claims Williams had one with the Titans, why should anyone believe he didn’t do the same during his tenure in D.C.?

Tony Dungy Says He’d Take Robert Griffin III Over Andrew Luck

With the 2011 NFL regular season in the books, the Colts have secured the first overall pick in next year’s draft. Now the question becomes what they will do with it. At this point it looks like the most likely scenario will be the Colts selecting a quarterback. Unless Peyton Manning can prove that he is 100 percent healthy and can give Indianapolis a reason to believe he’ll be around for 4 more years, they aren’t trading down too far. With that in mind, it all comes down to Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.

Earlier in the season, Luck was the obvious choice. One Heisman Trophy and a bunch of eye-popping athletic plays later and the decision isn’t as clear-cut. In fact, former Colts coach Tony Dungy told the Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday that he would take RG3 over Luck.

“I haven’t seen enough of everybody but I like those mobile guys,” Dungy said when asked who he would select with the top overall pick. “The way the game is and the guys that bring that extra dimension — I love Aaron Rodgers now and I’d take (him) over Brady and Brees for the pressure he puts on the defense with his running ability. I just see these guys like Griffin and Russell Wilson and they’re intriguing to me. I like Robert Griffin.”

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Tony Dungy Blames Lions Coaches, Organization for Ndamukong Suh’s Antics

On the surface, Tony Dungy comes across as a soft-spoken, back seat kind of guy. Those of us who know his history, however, know that he loves to ruffle feathers. Whether it’s pissing off the Cowboys, criticizing Rex Ryan for having a potty mouth, or telling the Titans what to do with Vince Young, Dungy is always ready to share his opinion no matter how controversial it may be.  For that reason, it comes as no surprise that he weighed in on the Ndamukong Suh situation on Monday and took an interesting stance.

“I really have to fault the Detroit organization,” Dungy said on the Dan Patrick Show. “I think they really could have stopped this.”

As we saw by his no-hesitation stomp of a Packers offensive lineman, Suh obviously lacks discipline.  That being said, how would you handle him if you were the Detroit Lions coaching staff?  Suh’s attitude and aggressiveness are what make him a force on the defensive front.  There is no excuse for stomping a player or throwing shots after the whistle blows, but if he spends too much time worrying about harnessing his aggression wouldn’t it stand to reason that he would become a different player?

Much of what people perceive as dirty play from Suh is simply playing hard.  Jim Schwartz and company have the difficult task of needing to find a middle ground between telling Ndamukong to tone it down and changing him as a player.  Despite what Dungy says, something like that is much easier said than done.

H/T to Pro Football Talk for the story.

Can the Tim Tebow Offense Last? Tony Dungy Says No

By now you all know that the New York Jets got Tebowed last night. Well, they actually got Sanchezed too but it’s more fun to talk about Tebow Time than it is to blast Sanchez for not making any significant strides in his third season as an NFL starter. With the Broncos trailing 13-10 and 5:54 remaining in the game, Tim Tebow took his team 95 yards for the game-winning touchdown. Naturally, it was Tebow himself who ran it in from 20 yards out.

Once again, Denver was able to win with a virtually nonexistent passing game.  Tebow completed 9-of-20 throws for 104 yards and no touchdowns.  He was particularly inaccurate when throwing from the pocket, missing at least three wide open receivers throughout the course of the game.  Per usual, none of that mattered.  The Jets could not find an answer for Denver’s spread offense on the game-winning drive and Tebow led his team to yet another comeback victory, improving his record to 4-1 as a starter this season.

Despite the Broncos’ success over the last five weeks, the Tebow-style offense — the one John Fox insists his quarterback would be screwed without — still has its doubters.  And it should.

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Tony Dungy Could See Peyton Manning Walking Away from Football in a Year

Peyton Manning had been a bastion of good health throughout his NFL career until succumbing to a neck injury recently. In early September, the All-Pro quarterback had a third procedure on his neck, ending his streak of 227 consecutive starts. His former coach, Tony Dungy, doesn’t believe the quarterback will exit the game on this note. However, Dungy could envision Peyton walking away from the game after one more year.

“I don’t think it would be hard to walk away from the game where he is now, with everything that he’s done. He loves it, he’s very competitive,” Dungy said during a guest appearance on PTI Thursday. “I don’t think he’ll walk away like this unless the doctors tell him that he can’t play. I think he wants to come back and have a great year. I could see him walking away after one more year, but I know him as a competitor, and there’s no way he wants to leave because of an injury.”

Dungy coached Peyton for seven years, so we trust his insight on the subject. However, he conceded that he no longer has insider info on his former quarterback.

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Tony Dungy Believes Peyton Manning’s Neck Injury Traces Back to 2006 Hit

Peyton Manning recently had his third neck surgery and is expected to miss at least 2-3 months. Many people wondered how Manning sustained the injury given that few of us had heard he was experiencing neck problems. Peter King reported Saturday night that “Peyton’s current neck trouble stems from hurting himself working out at Indy HS last spring.” Indianapolis Star writer Phillip B. Wilson says the pain in Manning’s neck started at least in February. Former Colts coach Tony Dungy thinks the injury goes back even further than that. He traces the problems back to a 2006 hit.

From Cindy Boren at The Washington Post:

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Tony Dungy: Aaron Rodgers Is the Best Player in Football

Despite winning Super Bowl MVP last season, Aaron Rodgers is rarely mentioned when people are asked to name the top quarterback in the NFL. The list usually starts with Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. When those two were ranked one and two on NFL Network’s Top 100 players of 2011 list, I said that Rodgers should have been No. 1. Instead, he was listed 11th. Apparently someone else agrees with me.

During the pre-game analysis of the Packers-Saints season opener on NBC, former Colts coach Tony Dungy declared Rodgers the best player in the NFL.

“Rodgers is special,” Dungy said. “He’s smart, he’s tough, and he can make all the throws you need to make.

“What separates him is the mobility. This is what makes him a great quarterback and why if I were building a team right now, I’d take Aaron Rodgers if I wanted to win a Super Bowl. I would take Rodgers over [Drew] Brees, [Tom] Brady, and [Peyton] Manning.”

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