[Wildcat Online: Sports] [ad info]





NFL parity is a good thing

By Chris Jackson
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
November 30, 1999
Talk about this story

Ah, there's nothing like opening the Monday morning sports page and checking those NFL standings. After all, from week to week this year, they're looking a little odd. Through the salary cap and free agency, football has produced a parity not seen anywhere else in sports.

The dynasties are dead. Green Bay is floundering, San Francisco is in the gutter, Dallas still has a vague heartbeat and the Steelers ... Let's just say it's hard to be a Pittsburgh fan after watching them lose to Cincinnati and Cleveland over the past few weeks. Heck, right now, the St. Louis Rams are the team to beat in the NFC. Let's all say that together, very slowly: the St. Louis Rams are the team to beat in the NFC.

So is it good or bad for football to be undergoing this change?

People in St. Louis, Indianapolis and Detroit won't argue that it's bad. But, people in Dallas and San Francisco will argue that it is.

But it is a good thing, even for the people in the cities where their teams have floundered.

How dull was the NBA for everyone but the Bulls' faithful over a period of eight years? With the NBA's new collective bargaining agreement, even it will soon head into the realm of parity. The race for the championship is wide open.

Parity in the NFL actually means that teams like the Rams will get a chance they never would have had in year's past. The NFL is competitive again. Sure, it's weird right now, and it's hard for a lot of football "purists" to take. But in the long run, NFL parity makes things interesting.

After all, even Steeler fans can believe that in a couple of years things will get turned around. Provided Kordell Stewart is shoved into the Allegheny beforehand.

Now it's time for several UA players to turn their attention to the NFL Draft.

Dennis Northcutt has established himself as a legitimate first round pick. Right now he'd go as one of the last 10 picks, but after the NFL Combine this spring, he'll be up to the middle 10.

Trung Canidate will sneak in around the late second, early third round. Scouts will underestimate him, but some team will eventually wind up having their selection called a steal.

Marcus Bell could very well go into the late first round, but the second round is more probable.

Manuia Savea, DaShon Polk and Keith Smith will slip in there somewhere. Savea will go in the sixth or seventh round, ditto for Polk. The big question with Smith is what he'll get drafted as. Some team could look at him as the next Doug Flutie, or he might get drafted as: a running back or even as a defensive back.

The only thing for certain is that no one from the UA secondary will get drafted.

[end content]
[ad info]