The following quotes are from NFL scouts, coaches and front-office personnel, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
• “The new CBA rule is that a third quarterback can dress and play. That is why Tim Tebow’s stock went up. He can play special teams and run in the red area and have a presence on game day. For awhile a few years ago, a lot of teams were only carrying two quarterbacks. Now I think you’ll see everyone moving toward having a third quarterback who can run. You’re at a competitive disadvantage if you don’t.”
• “Have you heard anything out of the Green Bay Packers this whole offseason about how good they are going to be? They don’t proclaim it to the world. They just go about their business and get the job done. They are the team to beat right now, in my opinion.”
• “There is a lot of stuff that goes on behind the scenes with prominent head coaches and players that no one ever finds out about. If the public ever knew half of it, I don’t know that they would be surprised, but they would definitely be enlightened. You’ve got head coaches hanging out at casinos and blowing all of their money. You have all kinds of womanizing and adultery. It’s Sodom and Gomorrah. The NFL has turned into a cesspool, in large part because there are so many politicians in positions of power and good football people have been run out. Someone has to explain to me — why is a first-ballot Hall of Fame GM like Bill Polian out of job? It does not make any sense.”
• “I talked to the people at Penn State. No one saw this coming. It was not anticipated at all. They did not get the death penalty. It’s worse. They wanted to keep the program alive and show everyone how much they are suffering. There are going to be a lot of people who lose their jobs in the front office. There are going to be people that go to jail. (New head coach) Bill O’Brien is really good, but I don’t know how he is going to keep his roster together. I don’t know how he is going to be able to recruit on an equal playing field under these conditions. I give it two years before he is back in the (NFL), tops — and no one could blame him. It’s a disaster.”
• “One of the big problems the league is facing right now — where is the development taking place? The new (CBA) rules have changed the practice squad into professional dummies. They are not playing football anymore or being allowed to develop. That’s a big problem that inhibits the ability to develop talent.”
• “I don’t think they have any expectations at all of winning in Minnesota this year. I fully expect they will start from scratch after the season — whether that involves a head coach and a GM or just a head coach is still to be decided.”
• “(Eagles third-year DE) Brandon Graham is on the brink of getting cut. He shouldn’t make the team.
• “The NFL has been building all these stadiums and jacking up prices and alienating its fan base. Sure, they have the TV contracts to support them, but the next generation is playing lacrosse. It is huge now. (NFL commissioner) Roger Goodell better figure out a way to keep investing in grassroots programs.”
• “(Redskins GM) Bruce Allen walks around trying to act like George Allen, but the new generation does not even know who (his father) was. The Ravens have taken over the state of Maryland. The Redskins have been pushed to the south in the state of Virginia. Washington (D.C.) used to be all Redskin country. Now it’s all Ravens and Steelers. That is why Bruce is there. His brother (George) is (a prominent politician in) Virginia and there’s an exit plan to (build a new stadium in) Virginia. They have to be able to leverage the situation.”