Of all the annoying and meaningless rituals associated with the NFL preseason, this one’s my favorite: the annual parade of players proclaiming with 100 percent certainty, and for all the world to hear, that they are, without a doubt, in the Best Shape of their Lives.
After all this BS talk, we decided to investigate all the other “Best Shape of my Life” claims that were made this summer.
BS Line: “I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in,” Tebow declared at the end of July in yet another attempt to return to the NFL.
BS Level: 10. Tebow — the guy who is willing to do anything on earth to make his QB dreams come true (except, ya know, go play in the CFL) — was so confident in his life-altering conditioning that shortly after this statement he quit football altogether to pursue a baseball career.
BS Line: “He came back in the best shape of his life,” said Chiefs special-teams coach Dave Toub at the start of camp.
BS Level: 3. Seems legit, at least to Toub, who added: “The conditioning test, I think he was first out of all of those guys. He’s lean, he’s ready to go, he’s focused and he’s ready to compete.”
BS Line: “I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in,” Bell declared on his Facebook page this summer.
BS Level: 0. Uh, have you seen the workout videos the Steelers running back posted? A few examples: here, here and here. Have you seen him run during camp? But last year, the 244-pound Bell posted a medical report that listed his body fat as 2.9 percent. Now, who actually believes he’s in better shape this season? Well, me for one.
BS Line: “This is actually the best shape I’ve been in for the beginning of camp for the first five days,” Gronk told Sirius Radio during camp.
BS Level: 8. The proof Gronk used to back up his claim? He really got intense and super-focused with his training for the entire two weeks before camp opened.
What was it like to play Arena League football, and that game in particular? ESPN.com has the video and spoke with the quarterbacks — Jay Gruden of the Tampa Bay Storm and Kurt Warner of the Iowa Barnstormers — for details. (They’re now known as Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden and surefire Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Kurt Warner, but you’ve probably made the connection already.)
On this particular day, Gruden’s Storm held off Warner’s Barnstormers with a late goal-line stand to win 42-38.
With the news, Blount is now my No. 33 running back, tops among Patriots backs but still 12 spots behind where I initially had Lewis (21st). White, meanwhile, has moved up to 48th, though he’d earn a ranking closer to Blount’s in PPR formats.
During Tuesday’s joint practice with the Cleveland Browns, Aguayo went 3 for 6 on field goal attempts, and Bucs fans booed him loudly.
“He’s struggling,” coach Dirk Koetter said after practice. “He’s struggling a little bit right now. He’s gotta work his way through it.”
The first miss came on his first attempt of practice at 35 yards out. After making the next two attempts, he backed up to 45 yards, and shanked it. He attempted a 45-yarder again and missed, with the ball sailing wide left.
Through two preseason games, he’s missed two field goals and an extra point. During his entire time at FSU, he was 198-for-198 on extra points and only missed nine field goals in three years.