Peter King, sans Red Sox hat, Bruins cup holder, and Patriots underroos. Photo: redskinsblog.files.wordpress.com
Peter King is a big, fat New England Patriots homer. The evidence to suggest so is pretty convincing. So, why doesn't he just come out an admit what the rest of us already know?
Peter King isn't a bad guy. He's a good writer who seems to have genuine integrity about reporting the facts of the game. I respect that, especially in the ESPN-driven media culture we work in, where inconvenient stories (like the Ben Roethlisberger rape case) are buried by major media news networks because they could adversely affect the network's relationship with certain players (like, say, ESPN's cozy relationship with Ben Roethlisberger).
However, what has always frustrated me about King's writing is his total lack of understanding for the game of football, despite decades covering the sports as a one-time beat writer and now a mega-columnist. King's merciless beatdown of Colts receiver Anthony Gonzalez in the latest Monday Morning QB article is a recent example. King bashed Gonzo in his recent column for dropping a sure TD in a pre-season game, saying:
I think the most significant single play of the weekend could well have been the right-in-his-hands drop by Colts wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez late in the first half at Detroit. The Colts are trying to give Gonzalez one of two jobs -- Marvin Harrison's right wide-receiver spot, or the slot receiver job. But Peyton Manning and offensive coordinator Tom Moore are waiting for Gonzalez to raise his game and grab one of the jobs. After the Gonzalez drop, Manning threw six more passes, none to Gonzalez, and Dallas Clark was back in the slot, his comfort zone with Manning.
18to88 does a fine job tearing King's "analysis" apart by stating what all of us already know:
- Anthony Gonzalez was #2 in the NFL last season in catch percentage rate (72%). For you stupid people out there, that means 72% of the passes thrown to Gonzo were caught. For you even dumber morons out there, a 72% catch rate is awesome!
- Gonzo is not "competing" for a job. He is the starting WR on the right side. He is not the slot receiver. Austin Collie is. Go to any blog, or go to the Colts own website, and it's right there for you to see.
I agree with 18to88 that King's analysis on this particular topic is very poor. In fact, it's almost amateur. You really don't need to know much about the Colts to know that Gonzo has great hands and that he is locked in as the starting WR. Any way you look at it, it's just bad analysis from someone who should know better, and is paid to know better. Sadly, this is often the norm with PK. When he reports on events and happenings in the league, he is top notch. Probably THE best. When you ask him to comment on an event or a happening, or to offer his "expert" opinion, oy vey!
Get ready for something ignorant and stupid to fly off his keyboard.
The other mind-wrenching trait King can't seem to shake loose from is his seemingly uncontrollable homerism for the New England Patriots. Peter King was born in Springfield, Massachusetts and currently lives and works in Boston. He's a seemingly big Red Sox fan. And for four of the last five years, Peter King has picked the New England Patriots to win the Super Bowl, and he's been wrong each and every year.
The one year King did not pick the Pats to win was 2007, which happened to be the year after the Colts won the Super Bowl. It also just happened to be the year the Patriots actually made it back to the big dance, only to choke in one of the biggest sports upsets in history. I guess if you're a Pats fan, Peter King picking your team to win is the "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" moment of the off-season. If you're a Steelers fan, you just went "YES!" to King passing over your team yet again, despite the fact they've won two Super Bowls in four years while the Patriots have won zero during that span.
Again, Peter King seems like a great guy, but it is really hard to think of him as an objective analyst when one sees such unabashed Patriots love displayed in full force.