Well, it is Friday, and on a day where there are links from all 4 major sports, I choose to lead with something your wife would be proud of. I am so pathetic.
US Weekly says they are getting Married! …
Jessica Simpson is head over heels in love with Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo – and close pals say an engagement might be around the corner.
"I think they're going to get married," Romo's close friend of three years, Michael Starr, says in the latest issue of Us Weekly, on newsstands now.
Starr's prediction comes on top of Romo's former fling Sophia Bush telling Us, "I think they could go the distance.
"They're perfect for each other," the actress, a mutual friend of Romo and Simpson, added. "They're both funny and wonderful and kind. I'm rooting for them."
Even Simpson's ex, Nick Lachey, has chimed in to add his blessing. "I wish her nothing but happiness," he told Us. "If she's found that... good for her."
Meanwhile, Cowboys risk Left Tackle; secure Safety …
The Cowboys have probably secured Pro Bowl safety Ken Hamlin for at least 2008 by slapping the franchise tag on him, but they have also opened up the possibility another Pro Bowler, Flozell Adams, could leave.
Hamlin will make $4.396 million, the average cap figure of the five highest-paid safeties in 2007, next season unless the Cowboys are able to sign him to a long-term extension by July 15.
Had the Cowboys put the franchise tag on Adams, he would have cost $9 million against the $116 million cap, a price they were not willing to pay on a one-year deal. If the Cowboys are unable to reach an extension with Adams and agent Jordan Woy, the veteran left tackle will hit the market Feb. 29 when the free agent signing period begins.
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones and executive vice president Stephen Jones are scheduled to arrive in Indianapolis today for the NFL scouting combine where they will conduct talks with Woy, Hamlin's agent, Kennard McGuire, and Drew Rosenhaus, who represents running back Marion Barber.
In guaranteeing Hamlin $4.396 million, the Cowboys will chew up much of their cap space. More will be taken over the next few days when they either sign Barber, a restricted free agent, to a contract extension or give him the first- and third-round tender worth $2.562 million and give defensive end Chris Canty, another restricted free agent, the first-round tender worth $2.017 million.
The Cowboys will probably have to create more salary cap room by restructuring contracts or releasing players to keep all of their free agents and sign others.
One possibility is restructuring Tony Romo's contract. The quarterback is scheduled to count $8.4 million against the cap, but the Cowboys can lower that figure by turning some of it into a signing bonus.
The Cowboys want to keep Hamlin and Adams. In effect, they have bought themselves some time to work out a long-term deal on Hamlin, so they can focus most of their attention on Adams.
Having been selected to the Pro Bowl in four of his last five seasons, Adams is the key to the Cowboys' offensive line because he protects Romo's blind side, but he is entering his 11th season and will turn 33 in May. He signed a five-year, $25 million deal in 2003 after the Cowboys used the franchise tag on him in 2002.
"We'll get into the meat of the talks over the next four or five days," Woy said. "I think if we can come up with something where everybody agrees, we'll be good. If we don't, then we'll take a look at the market."
If the Cowboys lose a potential bidding war for Adams, then they have drafted Pat McQuistan and Doug Free the last two years as possible replacements. Leonard Davis played some left tackle for Arizona, but he flourished in 2007 at right guard and was a Pro Bowl starter.
Game 2 of the Jason Kidd era (part 2) goes down tonight in Memphis (Not the one by the Nile).
Name as many Starting Grizzlies as you can name:
Grizzlies: Mike Conley, 6-1, Juan Carlos Navarro, 6-3, Rudy Gay, 6-8, Hakim Warrick, 6-9, Darko Milicic, 7-0.
If you got 3 or more, I would like to thank you, Skin, for reading my blog.
Mavs look for the right fit with Kidd at 2 Guard …
The Mavericks are going to use the next few games to see which combination works best in the backcourt.
The one constant will be Jason Kidd.
His partner is to be determined – or more accurately, a job will have to be won.
"We knew with these first four games coming out of the break that we could have four different lineups," coach Avery Johnson said. "That's a possibility."
Devean George started at shooting guard against New Orleans in Kidd's first game with the Mavericks. It could be Eddie Jones or Jason Terry tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies.
Jerry Stackhouse is a viable option, too.
"We did it during the course of the game [Wednesday night], and we're going to continue doing it," Johnson said. "That's part of the whole process of tinkering with the lineup a little bit; seeing who works well together and who works well together coming off the bench."
In baseball, thanks to the good Lonestarball.com, I would enjoy confirming with you that Mark Teixeira is still a hired gun who doesn’t want to connect in any way, shape, or form with any fans of his current employer …
Tex rolled into training camp Tuesday and said he's here to play ball and get ready for the 2008 season, not talk about his contract or whether he plans to test the free-agent waters next winter.
"If you're worrying about contracts, you're not going to take care of business on the field," he said. "Twenty-four other guys on this team don't care about my contract."
Actually, they do care.
Veterans Chipper Jones and John Smoltz have said how important it is to try to re-sign Teixeira, who hit .317 with 17 home runs and 56 RBIs in 54 games after being traded to Atlanta on July 31 last season.
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before the end of the season, before he hits the free-agent market?
"I'm always willing to listen," Teixeira said. "At the same time, I have much more important things to worry about. If I take care of things on the field, that [contract] will take care of itself."
Some believe agent Scott Boras could land Teixeira a six- or seven-year deal worth $25 million or more annually, considering the other contracts that have been handed out in recent years and Teixeira's age and all-around skills.
Boras is famous for producing a spiral-bound dossier crammed with statistical data for each free-agent client, and someone joked to Teixeira that Boras might have several books to support this client.
"He's got plenty of [contract negotiation] ammunition for me," said Teixeira, punctuated by his usual smile and good-natured laugh.
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He was asked if the contract issue could become a distraction.
"I'm not going to let it be a distraction for me and my team," said Teixeira, who is making $12.5 million this season. "If you want to talk about baseball, I'll talk all night.
"But if you want to talk about contracts, my agent is always willing to talk. And I'm sure Frank [Wren, Braves general manager] is always willing to talk."
In Hockey, Edmonton is in town. Here the Hockey News rates the powers in the NHL …And Dallas is up to #2!
3. New Jersey
TSN’s Trade Deadline page …
Hockey Shootout ideas
Billy Mitchell - It has to be a SNL bit.