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  • Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

    Won't get any better for Kurt
    Bob Glauber
    Friday, June 4, 2004

    Yes, even Kurt Warner can't figure out how it has come to this: How one minute, he was the most incredible story in pro sports, the stockboy-at-the-local-HyVee-turned-Super Bowl hero. And how the next minute, he was wearing a headset and a blank stare, wondering where in the world it all went wrong.

    "Sometimes you just sit back and say, 'Wow, how did I get here?'" the former St. Louis Rams quarterback said yesterday. "You wonder where it's going."

    Warner hopes it's going back in the other direction, that the pendulum will begin to swing in the direction of a Super Bowl now that he has left the wonder and heartbreak of the Rams behind and come to the Giants. He believes he again can be the dominant quarterback he was from 1999-2001, when he won a Super Bowl, went to another, collected two NFL MVP trophies and was named a Super Bowl MVP.

    Sorry, Kurt, I have my doubts.

    "I think that two or three years down the road, it's all going to make sense, and that a lot is going to be accomplished," he said. "Sometimes it's hard to make sense of it, but all I can do is take it day by day and see what tomorrow brings."

    Warner's enthusiasm is understandable in light of his experience the last two seasons, in which he failed to win any of his eight starts, suffered three broken bones in his throwing hand and a concussion, and ultimately lost his job.

    But Warner is kidding himself if he thinks he can get back to where he once was.

    He certainly gives the Giants a chance to win more games than if No. 1 pick Eli Manning were thrown into the starting lineup right away. But to imagine Warner throwing darts the way he did with The Greatest Show on Turf in St. Louis is simply unrealistic.

    Once he steps onto the field against the blitz-happy Eagles in the regular-season opener Sept. 12, you will see the same problems that led to Warner's fall from grace. You will see him lock on to receivers the way he did during his difficult times in St. Louis. You will see him get jittery under a heavy rush. And with the shaky offensive line the Giants figure to have, Warner certainly can't expect the kind of protection that once gave him time in his seven-step drops to fuel the Rams' high-octane attack. It doesn't help that the Giants are without the collective speed and talent around Warner that he enjoyed with the Rams.

    Warner can't possibly be as bad as he was in last year's opener against the Giants, when he fumbled six times and suffered six sacks. A mild concussion can explain some of those problems, but certainly not all.

    One player who was with the Rams during their two Super Bowl seasons said Warner slowed down noticeably in recent years, that he was not making on-field decisions as quickly as he did when he first came into the league and that he was becoming increasingly jumpy when he sensed a heavy pass rush.

    In fact, by the time Mike Martz sat Warner after the opener last season, there was substantial, albeit quiet, support among many Rams players for making the change to Marc Bulger.

    Warner played the good soldier the rest of the season, never publicly complaining about Martz's decision. And there were no harsh words about his Rams experience yesterday, only fond recollections of the past and a warm-and-fuzzy look to the future.

    "We had so much success and things were so great, you'd love to ride off into the sunset," Warner said. "Unfortunately, things didn't turn out that way. Those six years were the greatest six years of my life. But I'm looking forward to nothing but better things in New York."

    In fact, Warner hopes to spend the rest of his career in New York, however long that may be. Another red flag: How is he supposed to be this great tutor for Manning when he's looking to play here another four or five years? Manning is the Giants' future, even though Coughlin has decided he'd rather bring him along slowly with a veteran presence like Warner.

    Even if Warner plays well, the Giants shouldn't sign him to a long-term contract next year. This might be Warner's team in 2004, but it's Manning's team in 2005 and beyond.

    And who knows? If Warner fails to recapture the form that made him football's best player from 1999-2001, it might be Manning's team this year after all.

  • #2
    Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

    Nick,

    I guess for some reality bites harder on the [email protected]#$%^ites

    GO RAMS

    KW LOL in NY you will need it!

    BON CHANCE

    And Brenda well fermez ta bouche, tous le temps!

    FLO
    Socrates: Surf to live! and Live to Surf!

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

      They have a worse O line, a RB who can't hold onto the ball, and not alot of speed at WR.

      Don't expect too much.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

        Everyone here knows that in 1999 Kurt was all that and a bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos....after that, things never seemed to fit together as well as they did in '99. The Rams had the right combination of people at the right time in the right place for everything to fit. Will Kurt Warner be a success in NY? I hope so, for his sake. Will he take them to a playoff season? I seriously doubt it. The 'ants don't have the same mix of players, talent and coaching that the '99 Rams had....so I think KW will do OK, but won't light up the record books again.
        As far as Manning goes....after reviewing his records, things I have read about his performance so far in practice, and other things I have seen and heard, I think he is not the QB that NY was hoping to get...I really think that we have a better pick in Smoker. Sure, there was that suspension thing, but otherwise, Smoker looks to be another Rams power player, a name that just might go down in history.
        OK, I got off topic....beer has a tendency to make me ramble on. For instance, I end up sounding like Mojo Jojo, repeating the same things using different words. You know, saying the same thing over and over, never repeating the same thing twice. Or another example, saying things different ways while meaning the same thing....OK, I'll shut up now....
        temp_4394_1467243487543_20
        RAMS!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

          Originally posted by RamsFamily
          As far as Manning goes....after reviewing his records, things I have read about his performance so far in practice, and other things I have seen and heard, I think he is not the QB that NY was hoping to get...I really think that we have a better pick in Smoker. Sure, there was that suspension thing, but otherwise, Smoker looks to be another Rams power player, a name that just might go down in history.
          Wait a sec, you're saying....

          Smoker > Manning??

          I'm not sure I'm buying into this one...

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

            Wait a sec, you're saying....

            Smoker > Manning??

            I'm not sure I'm buying into this one...
            Yes, I am. Manning is basically playing his name. He isn't the QB Smoker is according to statistics.

            Quarterback
            Eli Manning
            College: Mississippi
            Year: Senior
            Height: 6'5"
            Weight: 218
            Birthday: January 3, 1981

            Strengths: Eli Manning provides name brand comfort. You know what you’re getting with this prospect, but you might get a little more than you’d first expect. Growing up in the shadow of both his father and his older brother, Eli seems unfazed by the hype that has been heaved upon him. Like his kin, Manning is blessed with the family quarterbacking genes, including the long body, strong arm, and even stronger brain. But Eli’s also got a bit of mojo working for him, too.

            More laid back than the uptight Peyton, Eli showed some brass cahoones in following his father’s well-respected footsteps at Ole Miss. The youngest Manning has good field vision and is an accurate passer. In this year’s spring game, he was razor sharp completing 14 of 20 passes for four touchdowns.

            Manning has also set numerous records at Ole Miss. He broke his own single-season marks last year for passing yards, completions, and attempts. He’s also already the Rebels’ career leader in passing yardage and touchdowns. Manning has shown remarkable consistency, and at one stretch, he went sixteen consecutive games with a TD pass thrown. That streak was broken against Florida, his brother’s arch nemesis. Unlike Peyton, however, Eli was able to vanquish the Gators. Manning capped off an impressive junior campaign with 313 yards and no interceptions in the bowl game against Nebraska.

            Areas for Concern: Despite what you might think, Manning had something of a quiet year as a junior, and his stats did show some decline from 2001. While by most accounts he is still an accurate passer, his completion percentage dipped more than five percent from his sophomore season, and his touchdown-to-interception ratio also slipped considerably.

            A weak Rebel running attack has not helped Manning; regardless, he did have a few uncharacteristic games in 2002. In a 42-7 loss against Alabama, Manning felt heavy pressure and succumbed to four sacks. He also gave up a fumble and an interception in the contest. His three interceptions against Auburn were troubling, the last of which coming under two minutes to play to seal the win for the Tigers. Manning’s junior year regression came on the heels of throwing six interceptions in the final two games of his sophomore season. There might be concerns as to how well he reads the blitz, and when he’s under the kind of pressure he was in 2002, Manning often is found throwing off his back foot and off-balance.

            Manning isn’t much of a scrambler. He scored only the first rushing touchdown of his college career late last season. Though he would later run in another one to raise his total to two, Manning’s career rushing totals at Ole Miss are a negative 107 yards. Manning might also not be a cold-weather kind of player, having grown up in the deep south.

            Playing in the tough Southeastern Conference, Manning has been unable to ignite any serious title hope thus far in Oxford. Archie has also been a tad overbearing in shielding Eli from any Heisman hype, though he has backed down a bit this summer. One would hope that his father would have enough confidence in his offspring to show he was tough enough to handle the hoopla and expectations, especially if he’s going to possibly be a top overall pick.

            How Does He Look in Steel Blue? It won’t be happening with David Carr and Dave Ragone still around Reliant Park. Given how high Manning will go, he will be long gone before the Texans even think QB, and that’s even if the thought crosses their minds. Having one Manning already in the AFC South, it would be a scary prospect to have a second one travelling to Houston every season. With the other three teams in the division not likely to spend a first round pick on Manning, however, this fortunately is a long shot possibility at best.


            Sunday, April 25, 2004


            OVERVIEW

            Jeff Smoker
            Position:
            Quarterback
            College:
            Michigan State
            Height: 6-3
            Weight: 223
            Hometown:
            Manheim, Pa.

            Remarkable reclamation project who emerged as one of the nation's elite passers in 2003 under the guidance of quarterback guru, head coach John L. Smith … To say that Smoker was "reborn" with the installation of the new spread offense would be an understatement … He not only re-established himself on the football field, but also away from the game … Smoker was suspended for the last five games of the 2002 season after admitting to a substance abuse problem. He participated in spring drills but was not allowed to compete for the starting job, but the coaching staff saw a player rededicated to the game and gave him one last opportunity to prove that, when he was named the starter prior to the 2003 season opener … He plays his best when the game is on the line and has a knack for making things happen because he remains cool under pressure … He became the first quarterback in MSU history to reach the 3,000-yard passing milestone in a season in 2003 … "Jeff Smoker provided the one building block in the spread offense," coach Smith said. "Jeff gave us an opportunity to win on Saturdays. I'm amazed at what he accomplished as a first-year quarterback in this offensive system. Jeff had an extremely accurate arm and the knack for staying out of trouble. He made throws that gave our receiver an opportunity to catch it or no one else." … In 40 games, he completed 685 of 1,150 passes (60.0 percent) for 8,932 yards, 61 touchdowns and 39 interceptions, breaking the previous school career records of 467 passes completions by Jim Miller (1990-93), 789 pass attempts by Ed Smith (1976-78), 5,809 yards by Dave Yarema (1982-86) and 46 touchdowns by Bill Burke (1996-99) … Also set the MSU all-time record with 8,714 yards in total offense, surpassing the previous mark of 5,556 yards by Ed Smith.

            ANALYSIS
            Positives: Has a slender frame, but shows good body structure with the potential to add additional bulk … Has defined legs and calves, broad shoulders and good upper-body strength … Made good improvements in 2003 in his pass setup, displaying a better ability to set his feet and step into his throws … Also refined his throwing motion (from three-quarters to overhead), which decreased the windup that he showed in his delivery in the past … Shows very good velocity on his short and intermediate tosses … Improved his play-calling ability and appears much better poised when pressured … Adequate moving in and out of the pocket, showing a good feel and anticipation for the receiver's breaks … Decent scrambler who can throw on the run.

            AGILITY TESTS
            4.95 in the 40-yard dash … Bench presses 225 pounds eight times … 480-pound dead lift … 29-inch vertical jump … 8-foot-3 broad jump … 4.38 20-yard shuttle … 29½-inch arm length … 9 7/8-inch hands … Right-handed … Wears contacts.

            HIGH SCHOOL
            Attended Manheim (Pa.) Central High, playing football for coach Mike Williams … Consensus All-America, who was ranked among the nation's top prospects by SuperPrep (No. 23) and ESPN.com recruiting analyst Tom Lemming … Rated among the country's top 10 quarterbacks by PrepStar (No. 3), SuperPrep (No. 3) and Lemming (No. 6) … Ranked as the Eastern Region's No. 1 quarterback and the No. 4 player overall by PrepStar … Named to PrepStar's All-Eastern and SuperPrep's All-Northeastern teams … First-team all-state quarterback, who completed 150 of 235 passes (63.8 percent) for 2,458 yards, 26 touchdowns and only seven interceptions as a senior … Rushed for nearly 600 yards and 10 scores in 1999 … Connected on 110 of 173 throws (63.6 percent) for 1,993 yards, 17 touchdowns and only five interceptions as a junior … Compiled a 30-4 record (.882) as a three-year starter.

            PERSONAL
            Psychology major … Son of Jay and Sue Smoker … Born June 13, 1981 … Resides in Manheim, Pa.

            Courtesy of NFLDraftScout.com, Powered by The Sports Xchange


            OK, I posted it, now you decide...who got the best bargain?
            temp_4394_1467243487543_20
            RAMS!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

              Hummmmh!.................okay fellow ram fans. I was going to leave this subject alone!....But, after reading these threads i cannot for the life of me even begin to do this!

              #1....I'm not to much of a betting man but, i will take all comers on a friendly wager as i have done in the past with Tex! kurt Warner with adequate protection will once again light up the score board! No doubt in my mind! all takers are welcome.

              This will be to our charity of choice! any amount is fine! It will not only be to prove to whoever about Kurt's ability but, the needy will prosper! Your opinions are respected by me, by all means! But, are you willing to back your words up?............I AM!

              Some of you could not have ever played much football on the offensive side of the ball,or you would never have doubt about our ex-Super bowl QB! fella's the O-line didn't help kW's matters or even the play calling most of the time!

              here's the way i see it! MM as a OC never had the pressure on him in 99'. So he could call all the gimic plays that he wanted,granted DV had to approve them! But, you think about it for a moment! Put your feet in his shoes. You have a job that really does not have your neck in the noose! Aren't you more likely to be a gambler and a lot more at ease doing things that you would not do if in a higher position?.........I have and would of!



              and to keep thinking that the only reason this offense is succeeding is because of MM your totally naive! Point in general! .......say the Rams have or had the personnel that other teams have or had....(example) the Cards.Lions, Bears,Chargers,Bengals,browns,need i go on? Do you think that honestly MM could have taken these teams to the Super bowl and i don't want to hear that it is not close to being the same! These other teams have very good player's! If not we should have really blown them out! Don't you think?

              It has been the players that have been bailing MM out these years! Not MM 's himself! He as a OC in my mind were a much better play caller that he is as a HC!............No pressure in 99" It was DV"s then! So that's why he was alot more creative then than he has been of late!

              Ok getting back to the friendly wager................KW will not only win this year but,he will excel once again!The Giants just might be a team to be dealt with!
              I think he will not only do well but, he will post much better stats and wins than MB and the Rams!.............sad thing is i truly hope that i am wrong!

              For those of you that believe KW is washed up !It's now you opportunity to help your charity's cause! No limit here! It will be for a good cause, and not i told you so!


              Ram on fans and team!

              As long as you continue too post your negative beliefs about KW. I will continue to post my positive beliefs! Sorry but, fair is fair!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                Originally posted by talkstoangels61
                I think he will not only do well but, he will post much better stats and wins than MB and the Rams!.............sad thing is i truly hope that i am wrong!
                Wow, give me some of this bet.

                I love Warner and thank him for all he did for the Rams, I really do.

                BUT

                There is no way on Gods green earth is Warner going to out perform Bulger. Bulger has all the tools to play with on his side. Warner has little to nothing.

                Now whats that bet :tough:

                __________________________________________________________
                Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                  I'll take Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt over Amani Toomer and David Tyree, not Ike Hilliard according to the depth chart on the Giants home page, everyday and twice Sunday.

                  Not to mention Marshall Faulk over Tiki Barber.

                  As Dez says, what's the bet and lets go.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                    Not to mention our Offensive Line over theirs. The Giants did nothing to upgrade that position and that was one of the worst O lines in the NFL.

                    Remember, they went 4-12 and passed up Gallery for Manning. They play in possibly the strongest division in the NFC. The Eagles are tough, Dallas made the playoffs and have a pretty good defense, and the Redskins went out and try to buy a championship.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                      Originally posted by RamsFamily
                      Manning is basically playing his name. He isn't the QB Smoker is according to statistics.
                      Statistics are statistics. Manning outperformed Peyton's college stats. What does that mean to you?



                      Originally posted by RamsFamily
                      OK, I posted it, now you decide...who got the best bargain?
                      Well, the best bargain is a different matter. The Giants clearly overpaid for Manning, where all we paid for Smoker is a sixth round pick. If Smoker ends up performing (he's third string now so the liklihood is slim) and Manning busts, of course we got the better bargain. But I don't think there's any reason to say that yet, since we haven't seen either play a single down of pro football.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                        Eli Manning is the real deal. He played at Ole Miss, not Tennessee. You haven't seen Ole Miss play for any National Championships have you? Even though, I was at the game when Memphis beat Tennessee at Memphis. Peyton was the QB. Was hoarse for three days. BTW Ike, Memphis also beat Ole Miss last year, so our alma mater has owned the Manning's. LOL

                        Anyway, Eli is scary with talent. He has a gun, can scramble a little, and probably has forgot more about football than all of us will ever know. Don't sell this kid short, he's a thoroughbred.

                        However, watch a kid named Danny Wimprine from the University of Memphis this year. This QB has a major gun. This is a QB Martz salivates about. And, CBS Sportsline has Memphis ranked 13, so they do have some talent. 13, wow. Can't believe it.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                          Dez and Tex,
                          Tend to agree with you about our weapons 100% but, the fact of the matter is .Will MB use them? You know that Kurt will use his!

                          The early part of my post also said with adequate pass protection!.......lol.......but, i did put myself out there for the taking! So i'll honor my bets! Who ever wins the others will have to donate $$$$$$ to their choice of charity's! Kurt will have to be the starter though! Covering my butt here!........lol......Oh by the way Dez, your avatar is the way i felt after the Rams cut KW!..................It made me turn green also! glad that your feeling the same way!....lol....he he....and for you Tex, glad you have horns on your head down there in Texas because you know what the old saying is about texans!...lol..he he......just kidding......lol......couldn't resist!........my bad!.........sorry...........now where's Av?.......lol.........
                          Last edited by talkstoangels61; -06-06-2004, 09:51 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                            Originally posted by talkstoangels61
                            The early part of my post also said with adequate pass protection!
                            It'll be interesting to see how you guys judge that if you do end up betting some money.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Won't Get Any Better for Kurt / Newsday.com

                              I am all over that bet for $100 alex, er talks... for KW to get mauled most of the season as he will be served up like a daniel against the first two teams on their schedule.

                              One more contigency TTA, you can't wear your Giants T while rooting for our beloved RAMS :tongue:

                              Good luck, KW!

                              Hey the best part of (if there is such a thing) for KW leaving is we will not have to see those close-ups of Brenda any longer LO<L :redface:
                              Socrates: Surf to live! and Live to Surf!

                              Comment

                              Related Topics

                              Collapse

                              • Yodude
                                Insider: Warner earns vindication, another turn on top
                                by Yodude
                                Oct. 13, 2004
                                By Pete Prisco
                                SportsLine.com Senior Writer
                                Tell Pete your opinion!



                                Insider | Notebook | Mailbag
                                New York Giants quarterback Kurt Warner is on a cell phone, driving somewhere in New Jersey, talking about his new team and his new situation. As he speaks, he sounds more upbeat than he has in years, which is saying something because this is one happy dude.

                                "I'm loving it here," Warner said.


                                Showing vintage form so far, Kurt Warner is proving just how little his critics know.
                                Why wouldn't he? This was a man who was written off the past year, many speculating that his time at the top had come and gone. They said his 15 minutes of fame were over.

                                That feel-good story of grocery stock boy to league MVP was nice at the time, but as quick as he rose to the top, it was sure to be followed by talk that he would fall just as fast.

                                Washed up. Over. Done. Finished.

                                Warner heard it all the past couple of seasons, the talk growing from murmurs into a full-blown amplified beat by late last season in St. Louis. Forget his two MVP awards he won with the Rams. Forget his Super Bowl victory after the 1999 season. Forget all the passing numbers.

                                The doubters, including the St. Louis Rams coaches, insisted his time was up.

                                "I guess it's unprecedented what happened to me," Warner said. "To go from where I was to the last two years, it's hard to make sense of it. People formed an opinion on what was wrong with me and they all seemed to jump on the bandwagon. It was easy to come to the conclusion that I wasn't the same player based on the past couple of years. But I never put a lot of stock in what people were saying. I knew what I was capable of doing. The bottom line for me has not been what people think about me, but what the people in my locker room and in the organization think about me. I knew I could still play and still win."

                                He's doing both, too.

                                The Giants are the surprise team of the first five weeks, winning four consecutive games after losing their opener to the Eagles. At 4-1, heading into their bye week Sunday, they are a half game behind Philadelphia in the NFC East.

                                Warner is big reason for the success.


                                So much for his just keeping the seat warm until rookie first-round pick Eli Manning takes over. Warner isn't going anywhere. Not the way he's playing. There had been some talk that Warner would keep the spot until the bye week, and then hand the keys to the car over to the younger kid. That's laughable now.


                                Warner may not be putting up the huge numbers he did with the Rams from 1999-2001, but he is running the offense with precision, he's taking care of the ball and he's getting it out on time.

                                Through...
                                -10-17-2004, 09:21 AM
                              • Nick
                                Footballguys.com Analysis of Warner Situation
                                by Nick
                                Fantasy Notebook: Fool Me Once, Shame On You. ...
                                By Bob Harris - Senior NFL Analyst - Footballguys.com

                                Well, the latest reports filtering out of the Big Apple say Kurt Warner
                                looked sharp during his initial mini-camp workouts this week. His passes
                                were crisp and mostly on target. But as New York Daily News staffer Ralph
                                Vacchiano noted, the surprise was that Eli Manning's passes looked even
                                better.

                                After struggling through his first mini-camp as a pro early last month,
                                Manning put all that behind him Monday with a much-improved performance
                                that caught the eyes of his coaches and teammates.

                                According to Vacchiano, "his command in the huddle was better and he had a
                                much greater knowledge of the offense. And as a result, he was able to
                                show off the right arm that the Giants worked so hard to acquire in their
                                blockbuster draft-day trade."

                                Wow. Sounds pretty darned good. ...

                                Unfortunately, Manning didn't fare as well Tuesday. Which should come as
                                no surprise. Once again, we're talking about a rookie trying to get up to
                                speed at the league's most difficult position to master.

                                Which is why, I suspect, we'll see a growing media drumbeat surrounding
                                the Warner/Manning competition with Warner putting increasing pressure on
                                his younger teammate as he becomes familiar with the Giants' system and
                                his NFL MVP experience begins to factor into the equation.

                                But that doesn't mean I believe Warner is the best man for this job. Nor
                                am I sure he's not. And I'm not alone in my confusion.

                                In fact, after reviewing some of the opinions being floated by those "in
                                the know," I've come to the conclusion that Warner is as mysterious to the
                                rest of the world as he is to me.

                                A sampling follows. ...

                                In an article published Monday, Sports Illustrated insider Peter King
                                advised readers: "I think Kurt Warner, whatever happens, will be a team
                                player and will help Eli Manning as much as he can with the Giants. Warner
                                is one of the few people I know in football who truly would help the guy
                                behind him even if it meant it might hurt his situation."

                                But former Giants quarterback Phil Simms disagreed.

                                "The perfect guy (for the Giants) was Neil O'Donnell," Simms told the
                                Newark Star-Ledger. "It's not a knock against Kurt, but the agendas are
                                different. Kurt Warner still wants to be a franchise quarterback. He wants
                                to be the guy. ... Kurt Warner will give information to Eli, but he's
                                going to be more concerned about his performance, his knowledge and what
                                he's doing."

                                Another Sports Illustrated writer, NFL guru Paul Zimmerman, took things a
                                step further,...
                                -06-13-2004, 09:36 PM
                              • WisRamsFan
                                Warner in the correct forum
                                by WisRamsFan
                                Warner becomes caretaker QB until Manning ready

                                By TOM CANAVAN, AP Sports Writer
                                June 3, 2004
                                EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New York Giants are taking some of the pressure off Eli Manning , signing Kurt Warner to be their caretaker quarterback until the top pick in the draft is ready to take over.

                                While the two-time MVP got a two-year contract late Wednesday that will pay him a minimum of $3.5 million this year, there is no guarantee the two-time NFL MVP will play for the Giants for more than a year.

                                When Manning is ready to go, he will be the Giants' quarterback.

                                ADVERTISEMENT


                                Until then, the job seemingly belongs to Warner, the soon-to-be 33-year-old who led the St. Louis Rams to Super Bowl appearances after the 1999 and 2001 seasons. Injuries and the emergence of Marc Bulger earned him a pink slip on Tuesday.

                                ``I am looking to come in and to play and to re-establish myself,'' Warner said at Thursday, hours after his first practice. ``I would love this to be where I finish my career.''

                                Warner has incentives that can push his salary to $8 million this season. However, the second year of his contract is voidable and his tenure may well be determined by Manning's progress in his rookie season.

                                ``I don't want to keep moving and picking up my family,'' Warner added. ``I want to continue to have success. I would love it to be here in New York and I will do whatever in my time here to be successful. We'll just see what happens.''

                                ``Obviously Manning is there, but this is New York and if Kurt wins, they are not going to want him to leave,'' said Mark Bartelstein, Warner's agent.

                                The signing takes a ton of pressure off Manning.

                                The son of Archie Manning and the brother of Colts quarterback Peyton Manning became the Giants' starting quarterback when Kerry Collins refused to take a pay cut and was released less than a week after New York got the No. 1 pick in a draft-day trade with San Diego.

                                Manning, who has known for weeks the Giants planned to sign a veteran, still plans on competing for the starting job.

                                ``I don't know if this takes the pressure off,'' Manning said. ``I don't know if anything has changed in my view. I am still going to practice just as hard as ever. I want to be ready.''

                                Manning and Warner spoke for a few minutes on Thursday. Warner plans to tutor Manning, just as he did with Bulger in St. Louis.

                                ``To teach a guy the little things and have him become a better quarterback was fun for me, as frustrating as it was not playing,'' Warner said. ``But I look forward to helping any way I can.''

                                Warner also is looking forward to playing again. He suffered a concussion in a season-opening loss to the Giants last season and did not start for the rest of the year. He...
                                -06-03-2004, 03:58 PM
                              • Nick
                                Warner's benching shows that Rams made right choice - PD
                                by Nick
                                Warner's benching shows that Rams made right choice
                                By Bryan Burwell
                                Of the Post-Dispatch
                                11/15/2004
                                Bryan Burwell
                                Post-Dispatch sports columnist Bryan Burwell
                                (P-D)

                                Back here in Kurt Warner's adopted home town, the varying opinions on
                                the cause and effects of the meteoric rise and fall of his storybook
                                football life always will be blurred under so many dreamy - and
                                divergent - emotional clouds. With all we know about him here, how
                                exactly do we reconcile the dramatic beginning that took him from
                                stocking supermarket shelves to NFL MVP to the unceremonious end that
                                has dropped him from heralded Super Bowl hero to declining
                                arm-for-hire?

                                There always will be an unresolved emotional debate here, where the
                                polarizing after-effects of his departure from the Rams still conjure
                                a divisive chasm between the unadulterated Warner worshipers who
                                believe he left town too early and the unapologetic Warner bashers who
                                are convinced he left far too late.

                                But nine games into his comeback season in New York, far removed from
                                the agonizing two-year-long Rams soap opera, Warner has been benched
                                again in favor of another rising young passer. And now it's time to
                                face three unemotional facts:

                                Warner still can play.

                                Warner no longer can play at his two-time MVP level.

                                The Rams kept the right quarterback.

                                The evidence is there if you're objective enough to digest it. The
                                more you watched Warner play, the more you knew the star of the Rams'
                                glory years looks better suited for a more limited role as an aging
                                backup QB.

                                Giants head coach Tom Coughlin had no other choice but to bench him.
                                If the Giants' offense was going to struggle, it might as well
                                struggle with $46 million rookie passer Eli Manning getting some
                                valuable experience.

                                "(Manning) is the future of the New York Giants, it just starts now,"
                                Coughlin told reporters Monday. "I really felt the last four games we
                                haven't been playing well offensively. We just need to make a change."

                                This is why he could make the change with a clear heart.

                                In all the important categories that measure a quarterback's worth,
                                Warner has settled into a mediocre existence (15th in passer
                                efficiency rating, 13th in completions, 16th in pass attempts, 13th in
                                completion percentage, 14th in yardage, 27th in touchdown passes, 17th
                                in yards per attempt and last in times sacked). The only category in
                                which he is among the NFL leaders is in fewest interceptions (fourth).

                                Meanwhile, in those same categories, younger, more mobile Rams QB Marc
                                Bulger is decidedly better in every category but interceptions (Bulger...
                                -11-16-2004, 01:24 PM
                              • Yodude
                                Why Coughlin Picked Warner....
                                by Yodude
                                Horrible game with Rams opened door for Warner to sign with Giants
                                Friday, October 22, 2004
                                By Tom Kowalski

                                ALLEN PARK -- Kurt Warner has won a Super Bowl, a couple of NFL Most Valuable Player awards and has set all kinds of passing records, but he's currently the New York Giants quarterback because head coach Tom Coughlin was impressed with one of Warner's worst-ever games.

                                In last year's season opener, when he was quarterbacking the St. Louis Rams, Warner had a horrific game against the Giants. He was sacked six times, fumbled six times (losing three) and was intercepted once in New York's 23-13 win against the Rams.

                                Coughlin, who became the Giants head coach this year, remembered that performance (after watching game films) when he was deciding whether to sign Warner as a free agent in the off-season.

                                "I looked hard at the game," said Coughlin, whose 4-1 Giants host the 3-2 Detroit Lions Sunday at Giants Stadium. "He had the turnovers, no question, but he also performed with outstanding toughness even well into the fourth quarter, despite the statistics, the turnovers and all of those things. He was battling and competing and had a high percentage completion rate even deep into the fourth quarter."

                                Coughlin, who is a hard-nosed throwback coach, wanted a competitor and that's what he got in Warner, who only wanted an opportunity to play. After his glory years in St. Louis, Warner stumbled hard with the Rams and it appeared his career might be over.

                                "I never had the doubt, from a personal standpoint, about my skills and that I could play at that level," Warner said. "I had some doubt about whether I'd get a legitimate chance to do it. That's where the doubts were. I always felt that if I ever got that opportunity, I could play this game as well as I've ever played it."

                                That's why Warner didn't want to sign with the Lions as a backup to Joey Harrington.

                                "It was kicked around and talked about a little bit but, obviously, they have a young quarterback who they've put some stock in and given him the opportunities to continue to progress," Warner said. "It wasn't the most conducive situation to what I was looking for, but I definitely considered it.

                                "(Lions) Coach (Steve) Mariucci is an old friend of mine and I really love the guy. That would've been a great fit, other than the standpoint that they have Joey there and he has so much talent and he's proven that's the right direction to go."

                                After a close training camp battle between Warner and first-round draft pick Eli Manning, the Giants decided they wanted to go with the veteran. Warner has responded with solid performances, completing 65 percent of his passes and throwing just one interception in five games. However, Warner -- and his three touchdown passes -- is...
                                -10-22-2004, 05:57 PM
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