The [Friday] Papers
1. Expect a lot of penalties on Sunday. Why? Because Tony Corrente will be the ref.
3. From Brendon Ayanbadejo's blog: "I get a lot of wardrobe questions which I find a bit weird. I guess I am a fashion mogul or something."
(Thanks to our friends at Rivalfish.)
8. "Regardless of his performance, it won't change Grossman's 2006 season, or the reality that he's still Rex Grossman," writes the Daily Herald's Barry Rozner. "He will still be a candidate to lose his job by Week 6 next season."
14. "In what might constitute a seismic shift in Super Bowl viewing habits, churches across the country started scrapping their party plans Thursday after the NFL warned anyone who violates federal copyright law - churches included," The Indianapolis Star reports.
15. Super Bowl Mattress Savings at The Bedding Experts. "Just like our home team, you can't beat these prices!"
16. Debra Pickett will slum with a "middlebrow beer" on Sunday just to feel like a part of things. Even the Super Bowl is all about her.
17. The mayor is going to the Super Bowl - with his biggest campaign contributor.
21. "Blinking electronic signs that raised fears of terrorism in Boston could have created "chaos" if the ads posted around Chicago had been discovered during Super Bowl festivities this weekend, Police Supt. Philip Cline said Thursday," the Tribune reports.
"One of the devices could have easily been mistaken for a bomb and set off enough panic to alarm the entire city," Cline said.
Cline also warned that Big Wheels could be wired with IEDs.
22. Memo to Sun-Times: High school kids will draw cartoons making fun of Indiana for half of what you pay Higgins.
23. "Playoffs Yes - Super Bowl, There's No Way."
24. "It's stunning - and irresponsible - that Jerry Angelo and Lovie Smith would build an elite defense and try to get by with a grinding, functional, scare-free, receivers-phobic offense," Mariotti wrote. "The Bears have too many lingering questions on offense to expect a playoff win over the Seahawks, Panthers, Cowboys or Giants - all more potent and balanced.
"They keep blindly praising Bernard Berrian, Mark Bradley, Justin Gage, Rashied Davis and Airese Currie, but injuries and rawness prohibit reasonable faith in any of them.
"'We like all our receivers,' Angelo said. 'The biggest concern and disappointment has been we haven't been able to keep them on the field at the same time week in, week out. Just because they're unknown doesn't mean we're unhappy with them. It's just a matter of getting them up and going.'
"Compare that bunk to the wealth of the Panthers . . .
"Needed: Better tight end. As for tight end, a position that continues to be revolutionized in the league, Angelo and Smith have opted for mediocrity again in Desmond Clark."
25. Also in September, Mike Mulligan of the Sun-Times predicted Nick Saban would win Coach of the Year honors and Daunte Culpepper would be named Comeback Player of the Year. He also picked Carolina over New England in the Super Bowl.
26. The Sun-Times staff predicted a 9-7 Bears season.
27. Sports Illustrated, on the other hand, picked the Bears to go 11-5, win the division, beat Dallas in the wild-card round, and then lose to Carolina.
28. "I see an 8-8 future for the Bears - not bad, but not super," the Trib's Mike Downey wrote in September. "I still don't think they can make touchdowns. This time it means they won't make the playoffs.
"My hunch bet is the Detroit Lions, who (a) have a new head coach and quarterback, (b) are way overdue and (c) look extremely relaxed up there in the Motor City, especially that assistant coach who allegedly drives his car in the nude."
The Beachwood Tip Line: Calling it in the air.
Posted on February 2, 2007
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