Cowboys most valuable NFL team + German QB + Return of football renews virus fears

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German QB with 'big arm' has big plans for TCU career

INTRO: When you are a German quarterback preparing to play big-time college football in America, there’s going to be a learning curve. Like the time Alexander Honig met Jim Harbaugh but hadn’t known that the Michigan head coach played 14 NFL seasons. “I only knew him as a coach at first,” Honig said. “My dad told me that he played for Chicago and some other teams, and that he played for Michigan as well.”

No worries, though, because what he lacked in knowledge of gridiron history, he made up for in size, skills and potential. The 18-year-old Honig is taking his talents from Bavaria to Texas — he has committed to play at TCU on a scholarship beginning next year — with dreams of becoming an NFL QB.

Standing nearly 6-foot-6 and weighing 235 pounds with a strong arm, Honig looks the part. Sounds it, too. In fluent English, he explains that he needs to outwork competitors and win over doubters because patience may be limited for the German kid playing the most important position. “Especially in Texas, football is like a religion down there,” he said. “They don’t want to have a European losing their games.” (MORE)

Cynical Sindee: "Proof that two decades of mediocrity on the field can be overcome by commercial propaganda."

Forbes: Cowboys most valuable NFL team at $5.7 billion

RELEASE: Forbes estimates the Dallas Cowboys are the NFL’s most valuable franchise at $5.7 billion, the 14th consecutive year they’ve held that distinction. According to the magazine, Jerry Jones’ team is also the most valuable franchise in the world.

After the Cowboys, the six-time Super Bowl champion New England Patriots are second in the league at $4.4 billion followed, by the New York Giants at $4.3 billion, the Los Angeles Rams at $4 billion and the San Francisco 49ers at $3.8 billion. Rounding out the top 10 are the New York Jets ($3.55 billion), Chicago Bears ($3.52 billion), Washington ($3.5 billion), Philadelphia Eagles ($3.4 billion) and Houston Texans ($3.3 billion).

The teams with the biggest jumps from last year include the Jets, Eagles and Seahawks, all at 11%. The bottom three teams are the Detroit Lions ($2.1 billion) at No. 30, followed by the Buffalo Bills ($2.05 billion) and the Cincinnati Bengals, who finished last in the standings at 2-14 in 2019 and are worth $2 billion. They are also the only franchise without any increase from last year.

On average, each team in the NFL is worth $3.05 billion, an increase of 7% from last year. And four teams (Cowboys, Giants, Patriots and Rams) are worth at least $4 billion. The Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs are No. 23 at $2.5 billion, an increase of 9% from last year.

Return of football renews fears over more virus spread

EXCERPTS: Are you ready for some football? The kickoff of the NFL season Thursday with 17,000 fans in the stadium illustrates the nation’s determination to resume its most popular sport in the middle of a pandemic that has already killed nearly 200,000 Americans. The topic has led to passionate debates at the state and local level, including whether to allow high school seasons to proceed and how many fans to allow in professional and college stadiums.

While Major League Baseball and the NBA have played without fans, the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs were allowed to open the season Thursday night against the Houston Texans at 22 percent capacity. The remainder of the NFL teams start their seasons Sunday with restrictions that vary by stadium, with some games devoid of fans and others with scaled-back crowd sizes like Kansas City.

[...] For football-obsessed fans, the start of the season is a relief after being cooped up for months — an opportunity to gather with friends at bars, go to games and tailgate parties or head to sportsbooks to place bets. Sportsbooks are expecting a record-breaking season in terms of the amount of money wagered, driven by a public that’s eager for action after months of lockdowns.

[...] Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious diseases expert at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore, said the NFL has the resources to protect players by testing them frequently. He’s more concerned about fans cheering in the stands. Yelling spreads virus particles in the air. Even with a lot of empty seats in a stadium because of capacity limits, fans may need to stand in line for bathrooms or concessions where it’s difficult to stay 6 feet apart... (MORE - details)

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