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Michael E Lawrence
Notes From A Keeper League
The Ultimate, Utopian Ups and Definitive, Diabolical Downs of Life as a Keeper Leaguer

December 10th
In the end, it was a simple coaching mistake that finally terminated the Holybourne Prophets' season.
From the sidelines in the dying minutes, as fans filed out early to beat the traffic, as our starters worked frantically to pull something back on the field before me, I knew that I had done the inexcusable: left touchdowns, four of them, on the bench...
( full article )

maurice jones drew

International Series International Series

Michael E Lawrence
James Laurinaitis: You got to be able to not let them run the ball at all and hope to make them one dimensional
October 24th 2012
james laurinaitis If you do let Tom Brady complete some balls early on first down so that you're facing lots of second and shorts, sooner or later they take a shot - and you're going to have a long day.... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Bradley Fletcher: We've just got to make plays in the secondary
October 24th 2012
Bradley Fletcher We're getting the plan in right now, and we've just got to make plays in the secondary, make plays on the ball and try to hold back this offense that they have. They're really good and we've got our work cut out for us... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Cortland Finnegan: I look like a Ram, is that what you're saying?
October 24th 2012
Cortland Finnegan FD: You are one of the most recognisable Rams, very much a team leader
CF: Yeah, I think it comes down to age and the way I play the game, and hopefully the respect that I've built through my hard work. And I think being a leader is just one of those things that comes with age... ( full article )

Michael E Lawrence
Notes From A Keeper League
The Ultimate, Utopian Ups and Definitive, Diabolical Downs of Life as a Keeper Leaguer

December 5th
The locker room is complete madness. There is champagne, singing, dancing, even tears, and the party will go on through the night. The Holybourne Prophets, in the final week of the regular season, have made the playoffs.
A champagne cork whizzes past me, actually grazing skin from my cheek, and for a moment, the whole place falls still, looking to see what I'll do. Anyone would think Welker had ordered a Babycham.
In fact, I laugh. I laugh like a drain. And the whole place erupts once more into action and raucousness. A reporter asks Romo “did you ever doubt you'd make it this far?” and Romo, catching my eye as he answers, says sans stutter and with grin: “No, never.”
( full article )
Notes From A Keeper November 27th The Final Push
Notes From A Keeper November 15th Darth Fader, Goliath, The Haters!
Notes From A Keeper November 6th Fireworks Night
Notes From A Keeper October 22nd A New Hope
Notes From A Keeper October 15th The Smurfs
Notes From A Keeper October 10th Potential
Notes From A Keeper September 30th Prophets vs Jets
Notes From A Keeper September 10th Season Opener
Notes From A Keeper September 1st QB or Not To QB
Notes From A Keeper August 10th Draft Day
Notes From A Keeper July 13th Draft Strategy
Notes From A Keeper June 17th Cutdown
Notes From A Keeper May 20th Off Season

International Series Pro Football Interviews Pro Football Interviews

Michael E Lawrence
Brian Urlacher: Ready to play despite late arrival
October 21st 2011
Brian Urlacher Q. A lot of people are talking about the fact you came over here later than Tampa, do you think there's too much made of that and will you be physically ready on Sunday?
A. Yes. It's not a reason to make a big deal out of it you know. We're here about 48 hours before the game and we'll be ready to play.... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Arrelious Benn: I'm named after the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius!
October 19th 2011
I guess my parents were historians somehow. It's real different and now I plan to name my son Marcus Arrelious too and flip it back... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Lance Briggs: Cup of Joe and I'm ready to go
October 21st 2011
Lance Briggs Q. Do you think you could get into Buckingham Palace if you just went up to the gates?
A. I don't think anybody could get in the palace without permission... maybe if we got a say-so from Obama or something... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Da'Quan Bowers: There's a chip on my shoulder
October 19th 2011
Da'Quan Bowers The Diner caught up with Buccaneers DE Da'Quan Bowers for an exclusive chat on Wednesday. The rookie linemen told us about his growing role, his young buddies in the front seven, and why he plays with a big-time chip on his shoulder... ( full article )
Rich Lawrence
Amobi Okoye Bear's Gallery
Oct 21st 2011
The day in photos...
( full gallery )
Rich Lawrence
Bucc's Gallery
Oct 19th 2011
The day in photos...
( full gallery )

NY Giant Legend

phil simms Phil Simms is a legend both as a player and as a broadcaster. With CBS in London to cover this Sunday's International Series showdown between the Patriots and Bucaneers, the Diner pounced on the opportunity to pick the former Giant's brains and take a trip down Super Bowl-memory lane ...( full article )
Maurice Jones-DrewStar Jaguar RB

Maurice Jones-Drew is fun. He's fun to watch, he's fun to talk to. You want proof? Mojo stops by the Diner to talk playoffs, Reggie Bush, blocking Shawne Merriman, and the Jags visiting Wembley in 2008! Read it here!
Michael E Lawrence
Gary Guyton:
ignore the talk !

January 15th 2010
gary guyton Third-year linebacker Gary Guyton is a central cog in the New England Patriots' linebacker rotation. In 2010 the Georgia Tech alum came into his own as a defensive playmaker recording 63 total tackles, three sacks, a pair of interceptions and two touchdowns from the middle of a young, emerging defense... ( full article )
mikecarlsonChannel 5 Presenter

Stops by the Diner to talk about his Ivy League days, Bill Belichick, SBXLII, chicken feet & a run down on how he thinks the top 10 in the Draft will go, all in our
Big Diner Interview!
Gregg RosenthalRotoworld's

Award winning fantasy football writer Gregg Rosenthal returns to the Diner to give exclusive tips and strategy for the stretch run in our big interview.
NFL Network's

jason la canfora The Diner invited NFL Total Access chief reporter Jason La Canfora for a coffee and a chat to find out what it was like covering the Redskins as their former Washington Post correspondent, how he is finding his new TV role, the differences in covering not just one but all 32 NFL teams and how aware he is of NFL interest in the UK...( full article )
Akin AyodeleCowboy MLB

Speaks to the Diner about the Giants on Sunday, Superbowl hopes and being a warrior in our Big Interview!

Michael E Lawrence
Woody Paige:
I could not pick my mother out of a police lineup

October 30th
woody paige Woody you're a star on both sides of the pond as part of ESPN's Around the Horn - what's it like making the show?
Woody Paige: It's great fun, great fun, and people seem to enjoy it because we're having such a fun time doing it. One of the most interesting aspects of it - since I've been over here the last three or four days - is that I've realised it's in a more primetime slot in Britain than it is in the United States... ( full article )
Justin TuckNY Giant DL

Talks about the run to the Playoffs, Osi & Eli, and being a part of one of the most dangerous D-Lines in football in our exclusive interview!
Bob GrieseDolphin QB Legend

Talks exclusively Football Diner, tells Fins fans: "Keep the Faith!" Read the full interview here!
Jaguar RB
maurice jones-drew Just days before the Super Bowl, the Diner caught up with the Jaguars' offensive centrepiece and asked him all about his career year, his future goals, and whether the Jags' fierce rivals Indianapolis can be stopped by New Orleans in this weekend's Super Bowl ...
( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Game Preview with Neil Reynolds
October 27th 2010
Neil Reynolds We caught up with analyst, broadcaster and writer Neil Reynolds at the 49ers' team practice earlier today to ask him who he thinks will come out on top in Sunday's game... ( full article )
SMU Coach
jeff reinebold Ahead of returning to the UK to once again be a part of Sky's coverage of Superbowl XLIV, current SMU Wide Receivers coach and all round cool cat Jeff Reinebold checks into the Diner to chat about the Mustangs season, as well as a wide range of issues in the college ranks and the NFL, plus makes a big prediction for this Sunday's big game ...
( full article )
(... View the COMPLETE Features Page ...)

International Series International Series International Series

Michael E Lawrence
Vernon Davis:
happy to play game on Mars

October 27th 2010
vernon davis You've been making a lot of plays recently and scoring touchdowns - but the offense as a whole still needs to take a step forward. Is this the perfect opportunity with Troy at QB?
Vernon Davis. Yeah, I think it's a big opportunity no matter who we got at QB - I think we got three guys who can get it done. I like Troy - he has lot of potential just like the other two guys we have on the roster... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Champ Bailey: we've definitely got our hands full
October 29th 2010
champ bailey Champ, there's some great CBs in the league right now - yourself, Darelle Revis, Nnamdi Asomughua - do you get caught up in the league table of who's best?
Champ Bailey: No, for me it's just about playing my game. That's really for the fans and the media to do all the speculating. Some guys promote themselves to be the best but I just play my game and let my game speak for itself... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Patrick Willis: we just have to finish
October 27th 2010
Patrick Willis How do you see Sunday playing out?
A. It's all about what team wants it the most and for us - despite what happened to Denver last week - we know that they're gonna come here to play against us thinking maybe this is an easy win. So we gotta come here and play hard this Sunday and every Sunday after... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Frank Gore: we've gotta stop beating ourselves
October 27th 2010
Frank Gore Do you feel any extra pressure with this QB change coming so late?
A. Um, I don't know - I think Troy Smith will do a good job. The guys around him have to lift him up, let him know we're there for him. Go out there and play hard and, you know, just try to be ourselves... ( full article )
Richard Lawrence
Broncos Practise Day Gallery
October 29th 2010
tim tebow More exclusive Football Diner photos from the Denver Broncos practise day...
( full gallery )
Richard Lawrence
49ers Practise Day Gallery (Wed)
October 27th 2010
michael crabtree Exclusive Football Diner photos from the San Francisco 49ers practise day...
( full gallery )

Patriot WR

wes welker Mighty mite receiver Wes Welker is the oil that keeps the Patriots' slick passing attack running smooth. His return to the lineup in week six after an injury-related absence powered the Patriots to a 59-0 drubbing of Tennessee, and the Patriots hope for more of the same in Wembley. He answered questions posed by a posse of media types – including the Diner – at length on Friday ...( full article )
Patriot LB

junior seau Junior Seau – the crazed all-star linebacker who's just unretired to rejoin the Pats – is a scary guy.
He's erudite, polite, and well-schooled in media sessions like today's, but a quick tip – don't try to put words in his mouth. He'll fix his eyes on you and let you know, unequivocally, that Junior Seau's not going to be making any statements Junior Seau doesn't want to make. And you will need a change of underwear shortly afterwards ...( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
Brady, Belichick step up to the rostrum

Brady, Belichick step up to the rostrum One of the main events of this afternoon's media jolly was, of course, hearing Tom Brady and Bill Belichick speak about playing in London and the Patriots' as a whole.
Brady – the handsome lug – was relaxed and cheerful, shooting winning smilesΒ as he discussed not just Sunday's game but sightseeing (the Patriots head of security is British born and gave the players a guided tour on the bus as they drove in from Heathrow) and cricket (Tom knew he was onto a winner when he name-checked the England cricket team and it's summer Ashes triumph) ...( full article )
Richard Lawrence
Patriots Gallery
More exclusive Football Diner shots from the Patriots media day...
( full gallery )
Patriot LB

jerod mayo Second year linebacker Jerod Mayo has returned from injury just in time to power up a re-energised Patriots defense. Jerod is a little looser than the average Patriot – open to talking about winning games, and just a little bit superstitious with it ...( full article )

Chargers TE

drew breesDiner:
Antonio this is a must-win game for you guys – did that result in an intensive practice today?
Yeah, it's always intensive when you put yourselves in a position like we're in and you have to climb out of a hole. And we very much created this problem for ourselves... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
San Diego meets Surrey
marques colstonWord on the field was that the Chargers practices here have been as intense and focused as any sessions all season. San Diego's nattily attired PR man Jamaal LaFrance told us: "Coming here has been like another minicamp for this team and the last few days have been some of the most spirited days of practice we've had all year"... ( full article )
Chargers CB

antonio cromartieDiner:
Do you think the Chargers are as good defensively without Shawne Merriman?
We're the same, nothing changes – we'll still try to apply pressure the same way we did when he was here. We're still a very tough defense to face... ( full article )
Chargers WR

marques colstonDiner:
The feeling is that the trip here has been like a little minicamp for the Chargers and a chance to regroup – is that your take on it too?
Yeah it is. We've been able to spend a lot of time with each other through making the journey and staying together in the hotel so we've bonded a lot this week... ( full article )
Richard Lawrence
Chargers Gallery
More exclusive Diner shots from the San Diego Chargers Friday practise
( full gallery )
Michael E Lawrence
Life's a Brees
drew breesSaints – and former Chargers – quarterback Drew Brees spent some time talking with media types such as ourselves after practice, and had plenty to say on his former team, coming to London and the Saints without Reggie B... ( full article )
Michael E Lawrence
A Guide to Recognising Your Saints
marques colstonYour faithful Diner has been swanning about in one of Hertfordshire's swankiest hotels today (we wore tweed and everything), getting up close and personal with the likes of Sean Payton, Drew Brees, Marques Colston and, uh, Vernon Kay, not to mention watching practice as the team prepared for Sunday's showdown with the Chargers... ( full article )
Richard Lawrence
Saints Gallery
More exclusive Diner shots from the New Orleans Saints Wednesday practise
( full gallery )

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