Peter King Knows Many A Sad Frenchman

05.02.11 6 years ago 65 Comments

When we last left excitrodangerfearmonger Peter King, he was somewhere between indifference and total confusion. Call it passively disoriented. He also served on a jury. Maybe. I’m not morally certain of it. I’ll have to check with the 5th circuit court of Chaosville.

So what about this week? Does Peter have any thoughts on the death of Osama bin Laden? I doubt it, but he might. READ ON.

The NFL can wait. Osama bin Laden is dead.

Sort of.

What an eerie end. While the world was following the Royal Wedding in England on Friday, Obama was giving the orders to have Navy Seals swoop into the bin Laden compound and take out bin Laden at all costs.

So WEIRD. Who knew that important world events and trivial world events could occur so closely together?

The front page of this morning’s Chicago Sun-Times floated around Twitter, a close-up of bid Laden’s face, with the word “DEAD” across the bottom.

Same headline if Peter were the editor of the Sun Times: “DEADish?”

Smarter people than I will write today about what it means.

God, that’s so true. It’s a truth that applies to so many people from so many different places. In a way, this statement does more to unify us that a terrorist attack ever could.

I don’t have anything deep on that, other than this:

I have nothing important to say about this, except for ONE THING THAT YOU WILL FIND UTTERLY PROFOUND.

We kept our word. We said we were going after bin Laden and wouldn’t stop until we found him. It took a decade, but we did it…

Because I totally expected us to call off the hunt! Let sleeping dogs lie, if you ask me.

It’s really been a remarkable 10 years, years that changed our lives. I don’t just mean by how much of a pain air travel’s become either.

Because air travel inconvenience was the first thing I thought of when I heard the news. Now, we all know 9/11 is why you can’t bring your nail file on a plane anymore. But did you know some people also were killed that day? Let me tell you a little bit more. But first… perhaps a trip to the Texas School Book Depository is in order…

I mean, and not to be corny, we’ve gained (I think) more of an appreciation for living in this country.

Are you new to this country?

(Back in 2001) Mayor Giuliani was asking citizens to please support the restaurants of the city, because people were afraid to come into the city, fearful of another attack. So my wife and I organized a party of 16 to come into the city 10 days after the attack for dinner at Carmine’s in midtown.

Now, I don’t want to call myself a “hero,” but suffice it to say this is the one time I didn’t expense a 16-person dinner. Mostly because I lost the receipt in my LL Bean suitcase.

Talk about getting goose bumps.

Pretty goosebumpy for someone in the middle of something emotional.

In 2008, I accompanied a USO group of players to Afghanistan. I’ll never forget flying from Kyrgyzstan, north of the country, over the northeastern area of Afghanistan into Kabul. Seventy, eighty, a hundred miles of mountainous, treacherous, untouched, snowy terrain. On and on we flew. “Do you think Osama’s down there, somewhere, hiding?” I wondered.


I’m getting a little tired of New England saving for a rainy day.

But when that rain comes… SIDEWAYS. You need a Tedy Bruschi type to lead you through it.

A couple of disclaimers: No one works the draft and manages the draft like Bill Belichick.

Just before I criticize Bill Belichick, I’d like him to know I still think he’s genius and that he should still keep feeding me phony leads in order to leverage other teams. Now, to my objective opinion.

In Cleveland, GM Tom Heckert didn’t try to outthink himself… Nine out of 10 general managers in the league would have done what Heckert did in moving down 21 spots in the first round for five picks in the first four rounds in the next two drafts.

Ten out of 10 GMs would have done it, because that Julio Jones trade was a fucking heist.

Washington is likely not going to be interested in (Kevin) Kolb.

I love how Peter just throws out random shit like this. Washington? Eh, they’re not interested in Kolb. I don’t see it. IDEA: QUASHED.

His is just a name in the small type, like the other 253 draftees. Round 7, overall pick 223: RB Shane Bannon, Yale… now the lone Ivy Leaguer to hear his name called over the weekend in the draft has a shot. Underdogs everywhere will be watching.

Indeed. There’s nothing more heartwarming than the underdog story of a Yale graduate attempting to have a successful career in something. It just goes to show that if you can attend an elite institution that bestows numerous future job connections upon you, you can really make something of yourself in this crazy world.

Now a word about draft grades.

That word? Kookyville.

I have nothing against my peers grading drafts.

If they wish to indulge in such folly, (snicker snicker) they can be my guest. But students of First Grade in Draftology 101 know it is ungradeable, like chemistry.

It’s harmless fun. Like mock drafts, grading drafts has become a spring tradition that fills space and, I suppose, generates good talk show fodder. There’s a difference the two, though. When you do a mock draft, you’re predicting who each team is going to pick …

And that’s so much more legit!

…presumably based on some knowledge you’ve gleaned though some people you know in different organizations.

Unless someone lying to me, and no way that’s happening. BREAKING NEWS! BELICHICK WANTS TO TRADE UP FOR MARK INGRAM!!!!!!!

But when you grade a draft, at least when I graded drafts in the past, I always felt I wasn’t qualified in any way to do so, because I just didn’t know the players beyond the top ones well at all.

Here comes the punchline…

Log on Tuesday to to read… Cincinnati killing it for once in the draft.

You know what’s dumb? Grading drafts. In other news, ZOMG BENGALS DRAFT GETS AN A++++++++++!

Quote of the Week III

“Get ready to play. We’ll put you on the other team’s best. You ready for that? I know you are. You’re part of the Ravens’ defense now.”

-Baltimore defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano, on the phone with Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith after the Ravens made him their first-round pick Thursday night

“You’re part of the Ravens’ defense now, Jimmy. That means pretending to be better than you actually are.”

Quote of the Week VI

“I’m told I can’t find one person who thought the linebacker [Michigan’s Jonas Mouton] we took in the second round … wasn’t a fifth- or sixth-round guy. Well, I’ve found one guy. Me. He’s a second rounder here.”

-San Diego general manager A.J. Smith, to Nick Canepa of the San Diego Union Tribune.

That is the most AJ Smith quote of all time. Seriously, AJ Smith is a walking penis. “Everyone thinks I’m a retard. Well, you know who doesn’t think I’m a retard? ME. Not a retard. TAKE THAT TO THE BANK.”

One thing about A.J. Smith: He’s a confident man.

No, he’s a prick.

The draft-pick value chart, used by teams leaguewide, is at times valuable, at times maddening.

It is no longer used by MANY teams leaguewide. Which means it’s of NO value to them. Hey, here’s something that occasionally valuable, provided that the results of it coincide with sheer luck!

The chart shows the Browns getting a slight advantage (but not a major one, as many draft analysts have said) in the 5-for-1 deal with Atlanta that netted the Falcons Julio Jones Thursday.


Flew through Milwaukee to San Francisco the other day, had some time to kill, and so re-entered security after getting a bite to eat. On my way through security, at the end of the X-ray zone where travelers gather belongings, there was a sign.


Right between the Confusion Are and the Indifference Area.

I asked one of the TSA guys about the sign. “Interesting word,” I said. “Ever hear of it before this?”

TSA GUY: Wasn’t it in your column last week, Kit Kat boy? Piss off.

On the plane to San Francisco (every seat occupied, but since when is that different from every other flight these days), the 4-year-old behind me kept kicking the seat. I took it for a half hour or so, then turned around and asked the dad if he could get the boy to stop. The dad said: “Yeah, I tried, but if you tell him not to do it, I know him — he’ll keep doing it.”

I would say, “I weep for the future,” but that would be a bit of an overreaction.

In other news, man have the last 10 years changed us as a country. I think we really appreciate each other more. OMG WHO’S THE LITTLE TWAT KICKING MY SEAT?! THIS IS THE WORST DAY EVER.

Tweet of the Week IV

“The Navy Seals get an A for their draft.”
–@mrnejman, at 1:58 this morning.

That doesn’t mean anything. You can’t draft shooting someone. If you could, I’d draft putting a .22 in Berman’s dome.

And that will be the only draft grade that counts for anything today.


I think in the Most Ridiculously Unimportant Note of the Week, I bring you how I did in my mock draft. (I don’t dare, do I?) I dare.

(I shouldn’t put weird shit like this in parens, should I?) I should. (But not the answer to my own question?) No. Make it look like a cool song title.

I called (Mike) Lombardi Sunday to ask him about one of the best scoops of the weekend — maybe the best — and about the suggestion on Twitter from Boston Globe football writer Greg Bedard that Lombardi may have been used by Bill Belichick to see if the Pats could have smoked out a better deal by a team interested in trading up for Mallett. Tweeted Bedard: “Almost positive Patriots leaked the Mallett pick to NFL Net to see if anyone would say, ‘Oh crap,’ and overpay to trade up.”

Whoa hey, the Pats manipulating media sources? Well, that’s just insane. I just talked a Pats source today and he told me they never did that kind of thing. Also, he told me that Andy Dalton had AIDS, which I thought was kinda shocking.

New England took running back Stevan Ridley with the 73rd pick, then Mallett with the 74th. Asked whether there was a chance he could have been used, Lombardi said: “Completely fictional. The Patriots, I’m not speaking for ’em…”

“I just spend every waking moment complimenting their organization. YOU WANT TO SEE HOW A REAL PRO TEAM IS RUN? YOU SPEND A DAY WITH MY FRIEND BILL BELICHICK.”

”They wouldn’t have brought Mallett in for a visit if they didn’t have any interest.”

Because teams NEVER engage in that kind of subterfuge.

“It’s completely inaccurate. The Patriots were seriously interested in Mallett, and I don’t think I was used by them. Not at all.”

Lombardi, of course, wouldn’t have had to have been told of New England’s plan, if indeed there was one, and I have no evidence this is true.

Lombardi is certain the Pats didn’t lie to him. But Peter is borderline certain that the Pats COULD have lied, except that he has no evidence of this possibility. So call it a legit 3:70% chance there was a lie.

It’s odd, though, for an organization as famously zipped-up as New England to have a story that big slip out.

I know! It’s almost as if they wanted people to know!

I think I’d like to clarify something from the column last week

Or whatever.

…a quote from Green Bay GM Ted Thompson in which he said the draft experts “don’t know anything.” Thompson called me Saturday to explain what happened. The quote is accurate, but he didn’t intend it to be about those in the national media (Mike Mayock, for instance) who study players for a job. He said he was referring to all the fans who become draftniks at this time of year. “I have tremendous respect for the guys who really study it,” Thompson told me. Consider the situation clarified.

“You see, Pete. I don’t hate draft experts. I just hate the FANS. So let’s not go blowing this out of proportion.”

It’s good that Peter provided a bit of context to this quote. Context helps. By the way, did know Cam Newton told Peter he wants to be an “entertainer”? Something’s very wrong with that young man. CONTEXT OR NOT.

I think we’re in for a long football exhale. My advice to you if the lockout bores you to tears: Don’t let it. Don’t pay attention. Don’t read about it. Trust me: I’ll tell you when to care about the legalities.

Don’t bother paying attention to the lockout, everyone. Peter will let you know when it’s safe to look. OMG! PETER SAYS LANDON DONOVAN SAYS THEY MIGHT REACH AN AGREEMENT BY THURSDAY! THIS IS GREAT NEWS INDEED! I THINK!

I think this is my cold water thrown on the weekend’s festivities.

I just want to prepare you in advance for this. You may want to skip this part, because it involves French people. Trust me: I’ll tell you when to care again.

It’s a letter from a follower of this column, Arnauld Chatainier, from Toulouse, France. He writes: “Bon jour Peter!

PETER: And vichyssoise to YOU, amigo!

The first-round day was a SAD day for me. After 20 years of passion for the game, 12 spent in pads in a country with less than 5,000 registered players, I finally realized that NFL football was not a sport anymore but a business.

O RLY? You mean they make MONEY off these games? GTFO.

‘Big deal,’ you would say … and you’d be right.

Oh, so you have no point.

But after watching JaMarcus Russell, Vince Young, Reggie Bush, Cam Newton and a bunch of untested QB getting drafted within 12 slots, the idea finally occurred to me: After a 2-14 season, those picks are made to keep your stands full, not to turn around your franchise.

Because those two ideas are mutually exclusive and can’t possibly go hand-in-hand.

“For every Sam Bradford-Home Run QB, there are 12 players who will implode.”

Oh, you are such an MMQB reader, Pierre. This player could work out, or he could IMPLODE.

“Reggie Bush was drafted to revive a devastated fan base after Hurricane Katrina, not to be an every-down back, which was obvious even for me, a poor French MMQB, with poor football IQ.”

He was also drafted because in college he was, like, really good and stuff.

“Vince Young was drafted to make the cover of a video game and sell tons of jerseys, not to be a perennial Pro Bowler. Don’t criticize the guaranteed money spent for first-round draftees: That $50 million is not for winning. This is the money an owner has to spend to keep his stadium full.”

Well then, it’s obvious that the only way to fix this is for NFL owners to purposely draft players who have a 100% chance of being Pro Bowlers. It’s so weird that they don’t elect to do that these days.

“On the 29th of April, 2011, I finally gave up the idea that Pro Football was a sport.”

Eet eez nussing more zan a boozhwah exheebeeshawn!

/lights cigarette in cigarette holder

“With so many red flags, Cam Newton was not drafted to win, he was drafted to sell T-shirts. I’m sad, because I lost my innocence.”

No! NO! Not Arnauld’s innocence! COME BACK INNOCENCE!!!

Thanks, Arnauld. Well done.

No it wasn’t!

You have quite a few fans over here nodding in agreement.


e. I love it when a team like the Indians comes out of nowhere to shock baseball. There’s one or two every year.

f. If there’s one or two every year, King, why is it never the Buccos?

e. I love it when Peter uses two bullet points for a single subject.

f. And manages to ask himself a question in the process. Right, me?

Good to meet all of you at Comcast Bay Area. For those keeping score at home, Raider voice and sports show host Greg Papa and Bob? Not brothers.

So you’re telling me they don’t share… a papa?!


Missed The Office finale. Will catch up this week.

BREAKING NEWS: Aging man fails to watch aging program.

BOTTOM OF PAGE: Bin Laden still fucking dead.

Coffeenerdness: I’ve got to get weaned off the six espresso shots a day.

Can that fit in a venti cup?!

That’s going to be my job starting this week…

Your sole job, one would imagine.

…when sanity returns to my coffee intake.


Beernerdness: Thank you, Marriott Santa Clara, for having such high-quality beer on tap at midnight Thursday

Indeed. Who knew hotel bars served alcohol to people late into the evening? LORD KNOW THE MARRIOTT DOESN’T DO LIKEWISE WITH ZULU BLEND.

OK, sue me. I thought the Royal Wedding was cute. There’s nothing wrong with the occasional royal occasion.

If only the wedding had been held at Conrad Hotel. Talk about getting goose bumps.

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