That Leadership Stuff…. Definitely Not Over-Rated

I’m sorry, but did I miss something? When did Brandon Merriweather become Ronnie Lott in his prime?

You would think by the way Merriweather’s teammates are reacting, his two-game suspension is the most un-just ruling in the history of sport.

DeAngelo Hall led the “kids-in-the-back-seat complaining” act by tweeting:

“Preseason sucks. They want to act like that. I’ll be damn if I play another preseason game. For what? Get suspended for a meaningless game”

Ryan Clark chimed in with: “Game for $1,000 dollars that won’t count on you record can cost you two regular season games & pay! Yep, makes total sense!!”

I’m sorry fellas, but I must interject at this point to say: “Nobody cares.”

Every Redskins fan knew that Merriweather’s “style” of play (run to the ball, lead with your head) was being methodically legislated out of the league. And every NFL player should know that trying hard in pre-season is for suckers (and rookies).

The forehead slapping irony in this, is that Hall and Clark are deemed as “leaders” on this team.

Whatever that all is… it’s like the exact opposite of “leadership.”

Leadership would have sounded something like this…

“You know, I have total respect for Brandon and how hard he plays, but this league is also about playing smart, and he’s got to be better. He can’t help us from the sideline, so hopefully when he comes back he’ll make that adjustment.”

Clark would have been more helpful saying something like: “Nothing we say can change it now. We just have to have guys step up and play hard when he’s out, because our opponents won’t feel sorry for us.”

But never mind being a leader, be a cry-baby instead.

The larger problem for the Redskins is that all three players – Hall, Clark and Merriweather – are “sub-prime” ideas at best.

Hall is a 30 year old corner whom the Redskins offered just a 1-year “show-me” deal to a year ago. He did, so now they’ve spent a bit more (although still cap-friendly) by signing him to a “4-year, $17 million” deal. It’s really just $5.3 million guaranteed, which I am sure the club hopes can be spread over two more productive years. A starting corner at $2.65 million per year? Not bad. But the larger point is that the team should have had somebody come and TAKE this spot from Hall by now, and they haven’t.

Ditto both safeties.

Merriweather couldn’t get on the field for his 1st year here due to a knee injury, then when he did, he started to promptly get himself kicked off of it by being an un-repentant head-hunter.

Clark is more of a nostalgia pick-up, due to the fact he was once here, but was allowed to walk away via free-agency to Pittsburgh over a pathetic difference of about $400,000 per year. Think about that: an organization that threw bad money after good for guys like Archuleta, Lloyd, Haynesworth and McNabb – SUDDENLY got penny-wise on Clark. Who naturally went on to have his most productive years in black and gold while winning two Super Bowls.

Oh, did I mention? Both Clark and Merriweather are such key parts of this organization’s future success….. that they are both on 1-year deals.

So in other words, you have at least 3/4ths of your starting secondary as guys who probably shouldn’t be here now, and won’t be here very soon.

Doesn’t mean they don’t know how to tweet like girls who have been jilted on prom night.

I don’t know what Jay Gruden thought about these comments, or wether he spoke to Hall and Clark to help “re-focus” them on the task at hand – not starting out 0-2 despite the softest opening two-step I’ve seen in years. It’s not often you get to play two of the league’s worst teams from last year right out of the box, but here we are.

And still, our so called “leadership” players are more worried about a guy who I can say with confidence, has literally no more than 14 games left as a Redskin.


The World’s Richest, Luckiest, Moron

They paid $44 million for this guy in 2012.

A barrel chested dope, who has somehow fallen into the driver’s seat of a $9 billion-dollar a year company that is impossible to sink.


How many qualified CEO’s of other companies are looking at Roger Goodell now and slamming their fists through the drywall in their own conference rooms in sheer jealousy?

Goodell hasn’t run anything larger than a lemonade stand when he was a kid, and now he’s the CEO of the NFL.

And he’s an idiot.

In the real world of companies that have to COMPETE for market share – the NFL most certainly does not have to compete for anything – can you imagine a CEO botching a PR disaster like Ray Rice’s domestic assault like this, and keeping his job?

But hey, Goodell said “I didn’t get it right” in a rambling manifesto of corporate legalese, so just wait for some of the league’s media lapdogs to use that as a reason to PRAISE Roger Tone Deaf.

Way to go, Rog. Doin’ a heckuva job.

If the NFL was Coca-Cola, and the CFO of Coke was seen doing exactly what Rice did, and the CEO decided to “punish” the CFO by limiting his use of the corporate jet (the rough equivalent of Rice’s 4-game sit-down) you could bet the stock would take hit, sales would crash, and that dummy CEO would be sacked by the Board of Directors by C.O.B. on Friday.

But not in Roger’s cushy world. He just bumbles from one comic under-reaction to a serious issue (concussions) to the next absurd over-reaction (Bounty Gate) and keeps getting raises along the way.

Goodell could literally take a 365 day nap, wake up to take a piss, and see his company’s bottom line go up by 18%.

So let’s see, now there’s the most DRACONIAN two-step punishment for sexual/domestic assault in all of sports.

Strike One: 6 games.
Strike Two: Banned for life.

Sure, that makes sense. I mean, the electric chair would have been a bit much for a second offense, right?

Never mind that nobody really knows what “counts” as a “strike” under this new, not-at-all-collectively-bargained policy. Would Rice’s pre-trial “diversion” program “count” as a “strike.”

I doubt it. She wasn’t going to testify against him, and despite what might have been on that inside-the-elevator tape, it was probably going to be an uphill battle to convict.

Do allegations count? A bloody nose? A single call to 911?

Ah, we’ll sort it out the next time a woman ends up at the bottom of some player’s stairs. Don’t worry. What could go wrong? In a single knee-jerk reaction, Goodell has now set himself and league up for a future hornet’s nest of litigation, union opposition and constant scandal.

Besides, if Roger messes up the next time, he can always just release a Memorandum and say: “I didn’t get it right.”

Every now and then, I get someone who emails me and says “what do you have against Goodell?” They want me to somehow PROVE that he’s NOT a capable executive of a large company. I say why is the proof on ME to show he’s an idiot?

Instead, tell me what he IS good at, and I’m all ears. Show me his track record in business outside the NFL, his deft touch in turning companies around, or navigating challenging market landscapes.

Yeah, right.

But he’s got a whole notebook full of killer ideas on how to liven up the Extra Point.

Carry on, SpokesApe. The check is in the mail.


College Football Cash Cover5 Pool -UPDATE: CLOSED!


Okay peeps, here’s how it goes.

I have a college football Cover5 cash league. It starts this Saturday. (Sorry, we’re a little too late to pick Thursday games, but pipe down, you’ll live!)

I am accepting the first 125 entrants, which matches the 125 FBS schools vying for the first ever “College Football Playoff.”

Cost: $50

To enter, here is the Delta Tau Chi GAUNTLET you must run.

1. Email me at and ask to join league.
2. You will get reply with link to sign up for a Cover5 account and enter the league called “Paul Finebaum’s Skullet”.
3. If you do not get a reply, it is likely because we are FULL. I am sorry. Next year.
4. Immediately following your sign-up to the league, throw me $50 on PayPal. (My email:
5. Make SURE you send it as a “Gift” so we don’t get pinched for a transaction fee.
6. Make SURE I can reconcile your PayPal payment email, with your entry to the Cover5 site. (e.g. If you have a stealth PayPal email that is different from what you send to me to join the league.)
7. Accept the fact I am going to charge a 4.6% “Administrator Fee” for this year’s pool. (Which I’ll graciously “round down” to an even $250, making the total “pot” 6K.)
8. Make your picks on time and without handholding from me.

You need not email me any elaborate “pitch” to join this league. Just jump on in.

IF there is any problem that seems GRAVE in the next 24 hours, please bring it to my attention. Otherwise, please don’t bog me down with “where’s the button for this” or “I don’t see the link to that…”

I need some self-sufficient go-getters here people, and we’ll have a HELLUVA fun year!

The TOP FOUR point scorers for the REGULAR SEASON, will make “The Playoffs.” Then those four will play Cover5 style on the four-team playoff, with POINTS BEING RE-SET TO ZERO after the regular season.

Cover5 College Playoff Payouts
Champion: $4500
Runner Up: $1000
Third Place: $500
Fourth Place: T-Shirt….. size small.

If you think I’m f***ing with you… I can assure you… I am not.

I want the four chumps in the “Playoff” to be as nervous as Jerry Sandusky in the prison showers. I want the possibility of you RUNNING AWAY with the regular season, and then f***ing it up royally in the playoff, and getting nothing but a t-shirt for your troubles.

I want pressure. I want glory. I want agony. I want tears.

So get at it people. Playing Cover5 on Saturdays is maybe more fun than Sundays. You’ll never root harder for Alabama to stomp it’s mudhole deeper into some chump FCS opponent’s face harder than you will now!

Cover5 Season Just Got Way Mo’ Interesting!

Radio fascinates me. Despite the fact I’ve been doing it my entire professional life.

I have a “trick” to doing my show. It goes something like this.


That’s right. Pretend like it’s just you and the fellas, shootin’ the shit. It helps to make it as natural as possible. And it also helps relax me as a host, to not worry about getting every single word right, every single sentence.

For years, I’ve been imagining that my daily three-hour show is essentially just being blasted out into thin air.

Except it’s not. People listen. I mean, they really LISTEN.

And thank GOD for that! People tune in, connect, and get addicted. But I never really believe that, until I hear from you guys (and gals) via email, with some of the most detailed, thoughtful, and appreciative letters I could ever imagine.

It’s also cool when “famous” people are listeners. Or even big fans.

Now, I say “famous” in air quotes, because everyone’s notion of “fame” is different. So when I mention the guy above who is going to be with us every week during football season, you might just say: “bwah! HE’s not FAMOUS.”


Meet Roy Wood Jr. a funny-as-hell comedian and actor who is on the fast track to “oh, yeah, I know that guy!” He’s already been on a ton of late night shows, done a lot of radio himself, and is currently on the TBS show  “Sullivan and Son.”

Turns out, he’s a big fan of the ol’ Steve Czaban Show.

When I first talked to him over the phone, it was clear he wasn’t just a “yeah I’ve heard you a few times” kind of “fan.” Oh no, he started quoting show lore, chapter and verse!

Roy said he often drove through the night from one comedy gig to another, and starved for something interesting to listen to, he found our show in the West coast overnight hours of 3-6 a.m.

He’s a Bama boy. Loves his football, and is going to be with us every Thursday.

All we need is ONE good ass-whoopin’ Roy to take to the window and make some money. If not that, we’ll settle for all the good subversive, snarky sports laughs we can get!

Pre-Season NFL Football: Necessary But Meaningless

In principle, there’s nothing wrong with the NFL pre-season.

At four games in length (five if you play in the Hall of Fame game) it’s maybe one game too long, but at lot better than six game march-to-boredom that existed back when there was just a 14 game regular season.

Pre-season games are necessary.

New players need some live reps. Rookies need to “flash” or “show something” to make the team. Coaches need a few dress rehearsals to get used to getting plays called on time, substitutions to be executed properly. The complex dance of a pro football game and it’s myriad of moving parts needs the oiled and exercised so that the regular season doesn’t start like a complete train wreck.

Yet, at the same time, pre-season games are meaningless.


This is true, despite attempts by us in the “chattering class” try to insist otherwise.

There’s only one thing that means anything in pre-season football: “Did any of your important players get hurt?”

No? Good. “Shower up boys, we’ll see you at practice after the off day.”

Necessary, but meaningless.

Prime example from Monday night’s Redskins-Browns game. I’m on the phone with a buddy as the Redskins smash Alfred Morris into the line of scrimmage FOUR straight times from the 1 yard line.

Goal line stand. My buddy says: “What kind of idiotic play calling was THAT?”

I said: “It was perfect. Why in the hell would we want to put any of our GOOD goal-line plays on tape for other teams to see in the PRE-SEASON.”

My buddy admitted: “good point.” Do you know how hard it is to get a “good point” admission from a friend when it comes to arguing about football?

Now, maybe Jay Gruden was NOT trying to “play it vanilla” in that case and IS IN FACT an idiot play-caller. I tend to doubt it. The point is, we DON’T KNOW what teams are doing in pre-season games. We don’t know how much of the playbook is actually active and prepared.

We know teams do not at all “game plan” in the pre-season. And that’s a huge part of preparing for your next opponent.

We know that the “tempo” of the game in August, is a VISUALLY noticeable notch below what it will look like in September and beyond.

We know that star players – especially the 4-5 guys who will directly influence the outcome of games when they matter – only play 1/2 to at most 1/2 of any game.

We know that 46% of NFL games are decided by 7 points or less. Which means it takes 60 minutes of action, involving some 120+ plays from scrimmage, plus special teams, penalties, and a big heaping of dumb turnover luck to decide the outcome of most games.

So only idiots would extrapolate any meaning from a pre-season game under the above mentioned restrictions and limitations.

Yet, we do.

I guess it’s still better than talking about baseball.



the GIF

Lionel Messi knows how to BEND IT like Beckham!