end all of evaluation? Of course not

end all of evaluation? Of course not

Messagepar elaine95 » Lun 15 Avr 2019, 8:15 am

HOUSTON (AP) — Robert “Bob” McNair Keke Coutee Jersey , the man who brought football back to Houston after the Oilers left for Tennessee by founding the Texans, has died. He was 81.One of the NFL’s most influential owners, McNair had battled both leukemia and squamous cell carcinoma in recent years before dying in Houston on Friday. The team did not immediately release a cause of death, but said he died peacefully with wife Janice and his family by his side.“He was a very caring, thoughtful and passionate individual,” coach Bill O’Brien said in a statement. “As much as he cared about winning, I think the thing I will remember most about Mr. McNair is the way he cared about the players.”When Houston lost the Oilers to Tennessee after the 1996 season, McNair made it his mission to return the NFL to the city. He formed Houston NFL Holdings in 1998, and on Oct. 6, 1999, he was awarded the 32nd NFL franchise. The Texans began play in 2002.“He was the reason professional football returned to Houston and he (led) our franchise with a laser focus on honesty, integrity and high character,” team president Jamey Rootes said in a statement. “He was an amazing champion for Houston and worked hard to make sure our city received maximum value from the presence of the Texans and the NFL.”His son, Cal McNair, who has been serving as the team’s chairman and chief operating officer, will lead the team in the wake of his father’s death.President George H.W. Bush, McNair’s longtime friend, issued a statement on his passing.“Bob McNair wasn’t just the brightest point of light in Houston; he was one of the kindest and most generous people anywhere,” Bush said. “Nobody cared — or helped people — more, and that’s just one of the reasons I will always be proud Bob was my good friend. He was simply the best.”Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones raved about McNair and his contributions to the NFL. .“His love for his team, and especially his players, was unsurpassed by any NFL owner that I have known,” Jones said in a statement. “I am most grateful and indebted to him for bringing Houston back the NFL and re-establishing that great metropolitan area in our state as an NFL city. I am privileged to have been his friend. We have lost a great Texan, sportsman and a wonderful person.”“He was not only a strong personal and professional influence on me, but his presence in the NFL helped grow and develop our league on so many levels,” Jones continued.Many current and former Texans took to social media to share thoughts about McNair and send condolences to his family.Receiver Andre Johnson, who played for the team from 2003-14 and is the Texans’ career receiving leader, tweeted about McNair, saying: “Can’t thank you enough for giving a kid from Miami a chance to live out his dream of playing in the NFL.”Three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt also tweeted his appreciation for McNair saying: “Thank you for giving myself and so many others an opportunity here in Houston.”McNair came under fire in 2017 when he said “we can’t have the inmates running the prison” during a meeting of the NFL owners about players who protest social and racial injustice by kneeling during the national anthem. McNair issued two apologies after the remarks became public, calling it a “very regretful comment.”In response, almost all of the Texans kneeled during the anthem before their game against the Seahawks on Oct. 29, 2017 after no one on the team had kneeled before.A powerful force in the NFL, McNair served as chairman of the league’s finance committee and as a member of the audit committee.In August 2014 he spoke candidly about his battle with cancer, and outlined the many procedures and treatments he endured to recover.“In the past, if you mentioned cancer, people thought it’s a death sentence,” McNair said at that time. “That’s just not nearly the case.”It was then he revealed he’d dealt with skin cancer for about 20 years.He also noted then that he’d remain in charge of the team, but would work on delegating responsibilities to other members of his staff.“We’re in terrific shape,” McNair said. “I’ll continue being the CEO and continue doing everything I can to put together a winning football team; that’s what we’re all about. We’ve won this other battle, and now we’ve got to win the battle of football.“I go to all the games and I’ll plan on continuing doing that,” McNair added. “I think I will enjoy it more and leave it to other people in the organization to worry more. I’ll skip the worrying and take the enjoyment.”He continued to attend many games after that pronouncement and was often seen at practice under the shade of a golf cart or talking with various staff members around the facility.“During his nearly two decades as an NFL owner, Bob McNair left a lasting mark on his city and our league,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “His leadership and determination brought the NFL back to Houston, built a magnificent stadium that hosted two Super Bowls, and his beloved Texans are in the midst of another successful season and are again contending for a place in the postseason.“He cared deeply about the league and was generous with his time and willingness to share his insights as an exceptional businessman.But above all, Bob was a family man.I extend my heartfelt condolences to Janice, their family, the Texans, and the entire Houston community.”After several difficult building years as an expansion team, the Texans won their first AFC South title and first playoff berth in 2011. They also won the division title a year later when they went a franchise-best 12-4. Both years they lost in the divisional round of the playoffs.McNair made the agonizing decision to fire longtime friend and coach Gary Kubiak late in the following season as the Texans limped to 2-14, tying a franchise record for losses. He hired O’Brien in 2014 and the team improved to 9-7 in his first year, but missed the postseason. Houston put up an identical record in 2015, but this time in a weak AFC South it was enough to reach the postseason for the third time. That season ended with an embarrassing 30-0 wild-card loss to Kansas City.In March 2016, McNair beamed as he sat next to quarterback Brock Osweiler on the day the team introduced him in Houston, and seemed unfazed by the staggering $72 million, four-year contract they gave Osweiler to lure him from Denver.“We just want to get better every day,” McNair said. “Certainly this is a day when we got a lot better.”Not exactly. Osweiler struggled and his name was added to a long list of quarterbacks who couldn’t help the owner get the title he so longed for. Osweiler was benched late in the 2016 season before getting his job back (through injury to his replacement) in time for the playoffs. But he threw three interceptions in a loss to New England in the divisional round, and Houston had seen enough and shipped him to Cleveland a few months later.The Texans drafted Deshaun Watson in the first round in 2017 to replace Osweiler Deshaun Watson Jersey , but he sustained a season-ending knee injury in a year when star defensive end J.J. Watt also missed most of the season with a broken leg. Houston went 4-12 in the last full season McNair would see.McNair was born in Tampa and graduated from South Carolina in 1958 with a bachelor of science degree. He received an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from South Carolina in 1999, and in 2010 was given an honorary doctor of humanities in medicine degree from Baylor College of Medicine.He and Janice moved to Houston in 1960 and he made his fortune as the founder of Cogen Technologies, an energy company which was sold to Enron in 1999 for $1.5 billion.The couple has been committed to charity in the city, and he was the chairman of The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation, The Robert and Janice McNair Educational Foundation in Forest City, North Carolina, and the Houston Texans Foundation. Through these efforts the McNairs have given more than $500 million to scientific, religious, educational and literary organizations.He also founded the AdvoCare Texas Bowl, which has provided more than $700,000 in funds to the DePelchin Children’s Center in Houston.Along with his wife, McNair is survived by four children, 15 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. I’ve always struggled to trust NFL front offices. They are full of humans, and humans are remarkably prone to mistakes for a variety of reasons, whether because of bias or self-preservation.It’s important to remember that no one is perfect. However, this doesn’t mean that people should get a pass for some pretty questionable errors. Let’s take a look at two such instances that have emerged in the news today. The first one is Texans related, and seeing as this is a Texans related blog, I thought we might start with this anecdote from the really fun deep dive that ESPN’s Seth Wickersham did on the dysfunction within the Cleveland Browns over the past few years. The story as a whole is filled with really dumb Cleveland things like owner Jimmy Haslem developing something of a dislike for Teddy Bridgewater during the pre-draft process in 2014 over something fairly unusual: Who knows what turned Haslem off Bridgewater?Maybe he thought his hands were too small.Wickersham’s report is full of really stupid things like this, all of which are hilarious to read if you’re not a Browns fan.Well, almost all of it is funny to read.There is one particular passage in the story that’s kind of hard to read as a Texans fan.Recall how the offseason between the 2013 and 2014 seasons was after Matt Schaub’s collapse.There was a fair amount of bluster about the Texans needing to find a quarterback to build around for the future. The Texans did have the first overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft but decided to select Jadeveon Clowney, leaving the QB slot still open. At the same time, the Browns were also in the market for a quarterback despite having Brian Hoyer on their roster. Shockingly, Hoyer’s presence wasn’t enough to keep the Browns from selecting Johnny Manziel with one of their first round picks. Manziel’s selection apparently prompted the Texans to ring up the Browns to inquire about the availability of Brian Hoyer, who we all know O’Brien was familiar with from their days in New England: The proposed trade was allegedly struck down by then Browns GM Ray Farmer, who was in his first year in the big chair; Farmer supposedly felt pressured by owner Jimmy Haslem to draft Manziel and wanted to assert his authority on the decision making process, so he rejected the Texans’ offer of a second round pick for Hoyer. The Browns rejected a second-round pick for Brian Hoyer.If not for an internal power struggle, the Texans would have given a second round pick (likely the 33rd overall selection that became Xavier Su’a-Filo) to acquire Brian Hoyer. There’s a more passionate and less rational version of me that would be swearing with gusto right now, but it’s been replaced by a sense of numbness, like I’ve been hit in the face with a frying pan. Maybe if I took a frying pan to the face I’d lose the required amount of brain cells ito start to think that this proposed trade was ever a good idea for the Texans. This is the past though, right? It didn’t happen! All of the people in the Texans’ front office who could have had a hand in this are probably gone now! Wait, the Texans’ head coach is still here? YOU’RE DAMN RIGHT HE IS! WAS BRIAN HOYER A FORMER QUARTERBACK BILL O’BRIEN WORKED WITH IN NEW ENGLAND?YES, JUST LIKE RYAN MALLETT!WAS HOYER A GUY O’BRIEN WANTED TO COACH AGAIN? YOU’RE DAMN RIGHT HE WAS!DID O’BRIEN AND HOYER EVENTUALLY REUNITE IN HOUSTON A YEAR LATER, WITH THE MARRIAGE EVENTUALLY CULMINATING IN PERHAPS THE WORST QB PERFORMANCE OF ALL-TIME IN A PLAYOFF GAME?OF COURSE!Even now with Deshaun Watson firmly ensconced as the Texans’ quarterback of the present and future, never forget that somewhere, lurking deep within the bowels of NRG Park, are individuals (some of them in prominent positions) who looked at the idea of trading a second round pick for Brian Hoyer and thought, “Yeah, seems legit.”Never forget.Our second story is actually something I can kind of relate to. I dislike math.Like, I try to avoid it at every turn in my life.I don’t speak numbers, I speak Ame - I mean, English! Apparently a certain section of NFL executives share my distrust of nerds with numbers. Per Tony Pauline of DraftAnalyst.com, there are some front office executives who don’t like this whole ‘‘analytics stuff’’:‘‘LEMME TELL YOU A LITTLE SUMTHIN’ ABOUT THIS HERE GAME OF FUTBAW, YOU SWEATY NERD. IT AIN’T WON BY TAPPIN’ AWAY ON THAT THERE LAPTOP.IT’S WON BY MEN WHO LEAD!MEN WHO LOVE RUNNING THE OKLAHOMA DRILL!MEN WHO EAT THE TURF SO THAT THE POWERS OF THE FUTBAW FIELD MIGHT IMBUE THEM WITH SOME SUPERNATURAL CONNECTION TO THE FUTBAW GODS THEMSELVES!’’ The reason I bring this up is that Wickersham’s article makes it clear that current Browns general manager John Dorsey is not a particularly big fan of the analytical movement, as evidenced by the lead up to the 2018 NFL Draft:Jokes aside, it’s important to acknowledge that this is a section of the NFL Front Office communities and not a referendum on how the entire NFL treats analytics. Teams like the Eagles have embraced analytics and the advantage the data can give to teams. I don’t like math, but the information analytics provides is too useful to ignore.It provides you with a valuable way of understanding the game. Is it the be all, end all of evaluation? Of course not. There are things stats and analytics can’t quite quantify yet; they are getting there, but there is always going to be a need for context based on game tape and the experience of working in a role and understanding what kind of things have worked before. These things can coexist. I understand where individuals from the scouting community are coming from, though. Their careers have often been built around experience, knowledge, and learning to trust what they can perceive.Stats can appear to cut against that because they attempt to explain things in a different way from what scouts are used to. There are two different paths to the same destination; it’s just one is so drastically different to the minds of those who take the other path, so there is a natural unease about it. Furthermore, you could almost understand the distrust.What if the other path is the objectively better one? What will happen to the people who tread the other path? Will they get left behind? This refusal to try new things is dumb, but I understand the irrational behaviour behind it. The problem as always is that no way of doing things is perfect. There is a reason why I don’t really care what Mel Kiper ever says; he’s wrong a lot of the time. He and every other member of the NFL scouting community works in an imperfect world of evaluation, and sometimes those methods lead to you looking at Brian Hoyer and going:‘‘Screw it, let’s offer a second round pick for him.’’

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