When you’re an undrafted rookie kicker in the NFL, you should know right off the bat not to expect to be able to go out and buy a Rolls Royce with your first game check. In fact, a bag of rolls may be much more realistic than a $500,000 luxury vehicle. But however small Arizona Cardinals rookie kicker Chandler Catanzaro‘s $1,500 signing bonus may seem in comparison to most of his teammates; he’s balling up to par with anyone else on the roster.
Although his salary is listed at $420,000 this season; the rookie minimum, his signing bonus is the only money that was guaranteed. So how would a young man who’d just attained his dream of playing in the NFL celebrate making big boy bucks you ask? The answer: Buy headphones.
“I bought some headphones,” he said. “That was kind of my big gift. That’s kind of the ratio between my signing bonus and some other guys’ — they get a car and I get headphones.”
Headphones may be a small price to pay for a kicker who is currently 15/15 on field goal attempts, so the Arizona Cardinals had better enjoy the cheap production while it lasts. If Catanzaro keeps making kicks as he’s been, they won’t be paying him the league minimum for long.
Maybe then he can really turn up and get himself a nice system to go with those headphones.
Ricky Williams says he’s given up marijuana for good this time.
Williams, who is now an assistant football coach at the University of the Incarnate Word, says “he turns down weed all the time.”
“When I go places, people offer me pot all the time,” Williams said. “And then I have to say, ‘Well, I’m sorry, I don’t do that anymore.’ And they look so disappointed.”
Williams spoke to USA TODAY Sports for a story about changes in the marijuana rules of the NFL’s new drug policy.
He says now that marijuana offered relief from pain and stress during his playing days.
“I don’t agree that it was an Achilles heel, I kind of think it was more like spinach for Popeye,” he said.
Luke Wilson In Talks To Play Roger Goodell In A Movie About How Roger Goodell Does The Right Thing In The End?
There’s a movie in pre-production based on a 2009 GQ article called “Game Brain.” The article, written by Jeanne Marie Laskas, details the story of forensic neuropathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu, who first discovered chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in former (and now deceased) NFL players like former Pittsburgh Steelers center Mike Webster. Not surprisingly, Omalu’s work was not readily accepted by the NFL — the article (and ostensibly the movie) details the pushback he faced from league doctors and officials after making his findings public.
The role of Dr. Omalu is already set — he’ll be played by Will Smith. Today, TheWrap reported that Luke Wilson, of all people, is in talks to play somehow-still-NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Notably, Goodell’s character arc is described as such (emphasis ours):
Goodell is the incoming NFL commissioner who leads a summit to investigate the connection between playing football and CTE. He eventually recognizes the connection and donates huge amounts of money to scientific research.
Roger Goodell admitting he was wrong? That doesn’t sound… right. At all. That last bit probably refers to when the NFL donated $30 million to the National Institute of Health in 2012, nearly four years after the timeline in the article ends. The official press release announcing this donation — “the single-largest donation to any organization in the league’s 92-year history” — makes no mention of Omalu or his pioneering work.
No one can deny that $30 million is a lot of money, and that it was a step in the right direction for the NFL to donate in the first place. But it’s worth remembering that the NFL and NFLPA had previously agreed to committing at least $100 million over 10 years to medical research, primarily on brain injuries. Also, Goodell made $44.2 million in a 12-month period from March 2012 to March 2013, including a bonus worth $40.36 million.
Perhaps the movie will shed light on Goodell’s learning process and how he came to understand and appreciate Omalu’s work. It probably will not show him receiving a $40+ million bonus, or him watching a video of Ray Rice beating his fiancee and then saying “Well, let’s just pretend like we didn’t see that, okay?”
Then Owen Wilson will show up as Goodell’s dead-beat brother and eat all of the Pop-Tarts, as per Owen Wilson’s usual schtick.
As football trick plays go, this is pretty good: quarterback takes snap, stands up, shows ball to ref, point to ref, walks through defensive line, then begins sprinting toward end zone. Touchdown. But Lewis & Clark Middle School (Jefferson City, Missouri) (Go Trailblazers!) added a nice touch: their coach named the play the “Ugly Kardashian”, and therein lies the genius. Kids will never forget a play with a name like that.