The Comeback Kids
Sporting comebacks come in many shapes and sizes, as the result of different factors and forces. The necessity to forge a comeback is often born of circumstances outside of one’s control: the main culprit being injury. Many promising NFL careers have been gravely derailed as the result of injury, some before they even managed to take off. On the other hand, being shut out and having to fight your way back in can also come down to a player’s performance and actions on and off the field. Let’s take a look at the most high profile players hoping for their shot at restitution this season.
(Note: I had a whole paragraph written on Johnny Manziel until I realized he had recently signed for the Hamilton Tiger Cats of the CFL. It may not be the NFL, but it still counts. Good job Johnny.)
- Colin Kaepernick
I’m probably one of the few people that actually rate Colin as a starting quarterback. He’s ridiculously athletic and has a better arm than some quaterbacks who currently have a job. Colin’s downfall (aside from his best Marouane Fellaini hair impression) was his decision to kneel during the playing of the national anthem. His protest in the name of social justice combined with a subpar streak of play ultimately became his ticket out of the bay area. Now it has become obvious, though yet unproven, that NFL owners are colluding to keep him out of a job. The only way that Kaepernick makes it back to even a backup role is if one brave team exec decides to break rank and sign him. That’s a big if. Kaepernick’s days may not be completely numbered, but odds on him playing this year are slim.
- Andrew Luck
Luck missed the entire 2017 with a shoulder injury, and has yet to throw a football post surgery. You can’t help but feel that, if he returns, that this is a make or break year for Luck. Having being selected 1st overall in 2012, Luck is far from a bust. However, he has yet to bring Lombardi to Indy. Luck’s biggest comeback obstacle is being in uniform for the season opener, and staying in uniform for the whole season. The Colts have not had a playoff appearance since 2014, but they might be inclined to be more patient with Luck given the circumstances. According to Peyton Manning, who is unquestionably qualified on the topic of making a comeback, the key to Luck’s successful return is reps. To throw as early and often as possible and to get back into the rhythm of the position. Hopefully Andrew will take the Sheriff’s advice.
- Colour Rush Uniforms.
Opinions are mixed on this one. The Jets v Bills Red on Green jersey debacle was undoubtedly a nightmare for color-blind spectators, but the color rush uniforms add an extra level of fun to games. Initially trialed as a method of making Thursday night football bearable, the jerseys were slowly rolled out to more games. There was talk a while back of scrapping them altogether. That would be a mistake. Not only do they increase engagement with fans, they act as an additional layer of revenue for teams and the league, which they shouldn’t be complaining about. Although I’d happily have them scrap the truly atrocious mustard yellow outfit the Redskins wore 2 seasons ago!