- Michael Jordan being in the Bengals' starting lineup but Billy Price not is interesting for sure. Even though he was only a fourth-round pick, Jordan is almost certainly more talented than the other competitors at guard, so putting him in there and letting him take his lumps is probably for the best. Price wasn't healthy in the preseason, which likely played a role in his losing the starting center job to Trey Hopkins, but I wouldn't be surprised if Price is a better prospect at guard than center anyway because of his athleticism. I think that's also true of Jordan.
- A fun controversy broke over the weekend when Ohio State announced, not coincidentally on a Friday afternoon to minimize the response, it is going to have a DJ play songs before and (worse) during the game. This, which likely means even further de-emphasizing the band during the game, seems like a phenomenally dumb idea that will make the generally bad game-day atmosphere at Ohio Stadium worse, which also explains why people in the athletics department support it.
- Some will say traditionalists who want things to stay the same on game day forever need to get with the times, and those people are, of course, wrong. I mean maybe not 100 percent wrong, but it is way below 50. Riddle me this: What is the ratio of people who go to the game wanting to hear the band play during stoppages vs. people who won't go because the band is less involved? And then what is the ratio of people who are more likely to go because there is piped-in music (or a DJ) vs. less likely to go?
- People arguing in bad faith because they like it will suggest the DJ is, like piping in music during games, something that will appeal to recruits. As Kyle Rowland of the Toledo Blade pointed out, the recruiting angle is bogus, as is the case with alternate uniforms. Might the DJ catch the ear of some talented teenagers and increase their enjoyment of the game? Sure. Will it actually be a significant factor in their decision? Of course not. Players pick schools primarily based on relationships with the coaches and teammates, style of play and potential to get to the NFL. They also tend to like playing in front of loud crowds that are actually into the game rather than sitting on their hands waiting for cues from the P.A. or scoreboard.
- My only take (I'm pretty sure) on Andrew Luck retiring at 29 is probably more guys are going to retire in the range of 29-31 than they used to, and that's fine both for them because that's what they want to do and for the game because there are at least twice as many potential pro football players out there than there are roster spots at this time. Luck's decision is personal and judging him for it is dumb, but it is fair to criticize him for leaving the Colts in the lurch by retiring at this time in the year.
- With the rise in salaries it's more likely more players make enough money to feel comfortable (not only for them but those who likely depend on them) at a younger age and decided they've had enough. Good for them! That is healthier for everyone than having guys hang on for an extra five years strictly to make more money and then have to live with the results the rest of their lives. I still think it will be a small percentage of players overall who make this decision because I'm guessing the majority of players still enjoy playing, at least for the money. That a noteworthy percentage of players play more for the money by the time they reach the top level is not news.
- That said, there is nothing wrong with lacking sympathy for someone who quits their job because they don't enjoy it anymore. That reminds me of a line from the Drew Carey Show: "Oh, you don't like your job? There's a club for that. It's called, "Everyone! We meet at the bar."
“Random Thoughts” was a semi-regular feature here at the blog. I’ve decided to rebrand it as “Marcus Musings” because it more often was topical sports thoughts than, well, random thoughts as originally intended.
While most of my other coverage is concentrated on news and analysis, this is a place to share opinions and have some fun. Have your own thoughts? Send them along to firstname.lastname@example.org or find us on Twitter or Facebook.