Monday, July 31, 2006

NFL Training Camp Do's and Don'ts

Now that all of the NFL training camps have officially begun, I thought it would be good to go over a few training camp do’s and don’ts, offering pertinent and useful information to any first time training camp attendees out there, or more likely, useless blather to the “Regular Joes” who read this sort of thing.

DO: Work hard in the off-season, so that when camp begins you are physically prepared for the grueling two-a-day practices and intense heat. This is after all the NFL, where any slight advantage should be sought. Being in top shape is key to a successful completion of camp and getting a shot at some playing time.

DON’T: Make 4-7 daily trips to Fat Burger, wherein you consume your meal before you even leave the parking lot and then feel compelled to turn right back around to get another meal, so your pals at home waiting for you to start the second half of a game of Madden don’t think you are a pig for eating it all before you got back.

DO: Study your playbook. It is just as important for all players to be mentally prepared as it is to be physically prepared for training camp and the up coming season. There is no better way to impress the coaching staff than to have the plays down pat, so that you can concentrate on displaying your physical skills.

DON’T: Spend the off-season smoking tons of ganja and exploring your inner self, or searching for enlightenment, or sitting around listening to “Tabla Express”. It doesn’t help your chances of passing drug screenings, and it isn’t very becoming for a hard-assed NFL player, people might think you are gay. Anyway, smoking crack is actually better suited for the fast paced, physical game that is football.

DO: Take time to make a positive impact on your community by volunteering or doing some type of community outreach. Being a well rounded, community active player is good for the soul and great for team PR as it prepares for a new season.

DON’T: Play for the Cincinnati Bengals and end up in jail or being sentenced to “community service”. Although wearing orange is no big change, sides of highways are dangerous and road crews are notorious for offering further nefarious exploits. And please watch out for tasers, they sting.

DO: Bring with you to camp some of the comforts of home to make the transition a little more bearable. Also, college dorm beds are small and your average NFLer is huge, so bring a quality mattress pad along to help yourself get as much quality rest as possible, you’ll need it.

DON’T: Bring with you your own hyperbaric chamber to sleep in; even if it does help you recover from injuries more quickly. It is just creepy, Count Darren Sharper, and what happens when a fun prank results in you being sealed in the thing, causing you to miss practices and lose your starting spot to Tank Williams or Willie Offord? Hell, the Vikings need your ball hawking skills out on the field, not hermetically sealed.

This list could go on and on, however I thought getting a few of the more important do’s and don’ts out there for the Rooks to see was the least I could do. Maybe my blogging mates can add their own lessons for NFL Training Camp.

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