We've got plenty of discussion available throughout the front page on the 2009 schedule release. We'll also have some more discussion in the coming days. However, I wanted to take a look at a another topic while I can still remember it. It's mostly draft-related, but can very easily be applied to any current NFL players.
I'm talking about the "contribution" Mike Singletary makes when it comes to players with "character concerns." I was primarily inspired by Tim Kawakami's column a few days ago titled "49ers draft: Singletary won't shy away from risky personalities." Additionally, there has been a lot of discussion about the various intangibles Mike Singletary brings to the table as head coach.
Since that Kawakami article, there has been a lot of discussion about Andre Smith and his agent issues, among other things. Smith has had a lot of problems going back to his final days at Alabama (let's be honest, he's no longer part of Alabama). It seems like there's a good chance he'll be gone before the 49ers pick. However, if he is there, I know a lot of folks here would love for the 49ers to jump all over him.
There are always character concerns in the draft, but for some of us, they might not be so big with a guy like Singletary in charge. So, I ask you, given that you can't really measure this kind of asset, does Mike Singletary bring something in terms of his attitude that most NFL coaches simply don't have? Or is this all fluff?
We'll certainly get a chance to assess this with DB Jimmy Williams. He's had some issues in the past and I'd imagine will bring a challenge to Singletary. He's shown he won't take any crap (see Davis, Vernon), but was that just something that happened at the right place at the right time?
I certainly don't see Mike Singletary as a phony in any sense of the word. He's an intense individual and he won't take crap from players. But in a league of millionaires, how long can that work? Will we see a revolt of players, or is a new kind of "players' coach?" I'd lean towards the latter given his playing experience, but I've certainly been wrong before. Any thoughts on the subject?