Monday, July 11, 2011

Red Sox Magic Number - 73

Going into the All-Star break and the unofficial half-way point of the season, the Red Sox magic number stands at 73. Going into yesterday's game with the Oriole the magic number was 74 and after the 8-6 victory it was 73. Both numbers remind me of football - a thought compounded by the fact that there will basically be no games today or Wednesday to make me think of anything else.

The number 74 makes me think of quarterback Ryan Mallett who was taken with the 74th pick of the 2011 NFL Draft. Mallet was supposed to be a 1st round talent who somehow slipped to the 3rd round into the Patriots lap. I don't know what to make of Mallett. If he came out for the 2010 NFL Draft everyone says he would have been one of the top picks yet his Senior year stats would have seemed to have done nothing to damage his status. He has a strong arm, throws accurate passes and played in a pro-style offense - yet he dropped to the 3rd round. Why? And why does he need that extra "T" at the end of his last name? Like many Patriots fans I'm curious to see what the team has in Ryan Mallett but the only place we want to see him play is in preseason games for obvious reasons.

The number 73 reminds me (and many Patriots fans) of retired legend John Hannah - the man once acclaimed as the best lineman of all-time. Hannah and Leon Gray remain the gold standard for guard-tackle combinations in NFL history. Too bad that for many people when you say John Hannah they think of the guy who played the brother in the movie The Mummy.

So you have Ryan Mallett, potentially the future of the Patriots and John Hannah who represents the best of the past. The only thing missing is the present. I'm sick of so-called news about a labor deal. Just get it done and get me my football back.

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