EAST RUTHERFORD NJ - NOVEMBER 21: Mario Williams #90 of the Houston Texans celebrates a sack against the New York Jets with teammate Antonio Smith #94 on November 21 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford New Jersey. The Jets defeated the Texans 30-27. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
The NFLPA decertified on Friday. Following that news, the NFL quickly issued a lockout at midnight. I'm sick of statements from both sides. I'm sick of people weighing in with their opinions of who is to blame and when it will all get resolved. I'm even sick of people talking about how tired they are of all the lockout news (irony). For me, it's best just to concentrate on draft stuff to the extent that is possible. I really wish I could put a filter on Twitter and sports media in general that let worthwhile lockout news through to me but kept all of the opinion and conjecture away; unfortunately, that's not possible.
As I continue to do these links, I will try to cater to both sides. If you find the labor stuff interesting, especially as it pertains to the Houston Texans, I'll continue to link those articles as I come across them. For those of you like me, rest assured that I will have a good amount of draft articles that have nothing to do with the labor strife so you can take the "wake me when it's over" approach that I wish I could. You can find the first example of what I'm talking about after the jump.
Let's get the lockout stuff out of the way. Alan Burge gives his perspective as a fan of the status of the labor negotiations to include a breakdown of the class action lawsuit by the players against the NFL.
John Hallam wonders if the fans can decertify as well, after he received a bill for tickets to a season that very well might not be played in its entirety now.
Apparently, season ticket holders were sent a letter from Texans team president Jerry Rootes explaining the "CBA development process" to all the fans, in which he assures them that preparations are being made for the 2011 season.
John McClain takes a lot of heat around Texans blogs because of his lack of news that he produces despite his access. McClain wrote a very informative piece on new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips and how he sees the defensive roster as of right now. It's hard to determine what if certain opinions came from Phillips or McClain, but the article sheds a lot light on the direction of the defense.
John Hallam weighs in on what he took from the McClain article as it pertains to the Texans' defense.
McClain used his newfound knowledge of Phillips' intentions for the defense to write the second edition of his mock draft, in which he has the Texans selecting Aldon Smith. I don't agree with the pick, and I'll explain why when I break down Phillips' comments in the previously mentioned article.
Aldon Smith's Pro Day will be held Thursday in what will be a busy week of such workout events. Tony Pauline has a breakdown of the pro days and who will be in the spotlight. One interesting prospect that he brought up that I have to admit I was not aware of was nose tackle Blaine Sumner from Colorado School of Mines. Sumner got on the radar by benching 225 pounds 49 times despite being sick. While bench press doesn't always mean football skills, it will definitely cause me to research him more.
Wes Bunting breaks down the recent draft rumors that he's heard from scouts and front office personnel. Among the interesting notes, Pittsburgh defensive end Jabaal Sheard is flying under the radar as a potential 3-4 OLB. Sheard could be a sneaky pick in what is turning out to be a OLB-rich second round. More on that to follow as well.
Lastly, this was the second weekend that Chris Watkins was at the helm at SB Nation Houston. For a summary of his great work, check out his link roundup at the original Houston Diehards.