Monday, August 10, 2009

Five Good Questions with . . . John Valentine

The football season is closing in fast so Stiles Points has asked some of his friends to participate in "Five Good Questions..."...yeh believe it or not, Stiles Points does have a few friends...he has to pay them $10 a month for this right...

Anyway, the first to respond is the pride of the Eastside of Youngstown, Ohio -- the real Golden Bear -- John Valentine...I've known Johnny V for 16 years even though he now lives in south Florida...he is the only Puerto Rican who does not look Puerto Rican...besides loving the NFL, he is one smooth dealer with the women...I know he was probably banging some chicks, so I want to thank him for taking a timeout to respond to this request...

Q1. Every season there are a few teams that do really well even though they were predicted to have a lousy team. For example, the Dolphins went from 1-15 to a playoff team in one year. Who are some surprise teams that we should keep an eye on and why?
A. I'd have to go the the New Orleans Saints. I believe that their 8-8 schedule was attributed to dismal secondary, ranking in the bottom half in the league for passing yards allowed and passing scores allowed. In the off season, they promptly and efficiently addressed that by bringing in Darren Sharper and Jabari Greer, and taking stud Ohio State corner Malcom Jenkins with their first draft pick. How is that for addressing a need? The offense speaks for itself, and I believe that with this commitment to the secondary could turn around 4 of those losses from last year and make them a 12-4 team this year.

Q2. What are your thoughts about the NFL playing an 18-game regular season?
A. I am all for it. The more games, the better. I do believe it may impact teams with players in contract disputes or need extra rehab time, but that dynamic will become part of the game. Nobody wants to see pre-season games, and ultimately the fans win.

Q3. Fun question - you have just been granted a franchise and you are able to select any 2 players in the NFL to build your team around. Who would you select and why?
A. You have to start with a QB, and I cannot think of anyone better than Peyton Manning. Not only is he a consistent producer, he is of great moral character and work ethic. He may be the "safe pick", but if I am starting a new team, that is exactly what I want. My second pick would be Adrian Peterson. Not only for his freakish abilities, but his age. He could give me highlight reels for years to come, and the peak of his ability has yet to be seen. Given that Peyton would be his QB, he would never see 8 man fronts, making him deadly. The combo of those two would be an incredible start to a new franchise.

Q4. Of the current 32 NFL head coaches, who would you select to coach your team in a one-game must win situation? Why did you choose this coach?
A. As much as I hate to say it, it have to would be Bill Belichick. Say what you want about the man, he will do whatever it takes to win. From Spygate to his notorious skirting of the IR reports, he is committed to getting what ever edge he can, and it is that drive that makes him successful. Given that, he is also a football genius. Offensively and defensively is always creating a new wrinkle to keep teams on their toes. His knowledge of the game is unparalleled, and many have benefited from his knowledge, with 6 of his assistant coaches becoming head coaches, 5 went on to become Div. I head coaches, and seen numerous assistant coaches or executives under him going on to becomes assistants, coordinators or executives elsewhere in the NFL. Incredible!

Q5. Last question - who will play in this year's Super Bowl -- and your winner?
A. New England vs. Atlanta. Atlanta is a reach, but I don't like anyone else except the Saints and Giants to make any noise in the NFC, and I believe that ATL are best poised to make that run. Belichick does it again.

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