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Doug Farrar

Deep Posts: The UFL draft, and the case for replay

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In case you didn't notice (and you probably didn't), the UFL Draft took place yesterday. Among those players selected were veteran NFL tackle Shawn Andrews(notes), and a defensive end from Purdue by the name of "Cheeky Okeefer", who may be related to ex-Purdue defensive end Chike Okeafor(notes), who has played for the 49ers, Seahawks, and Cardinals. The first overall pick was DeWayne White(notes), who put up 27 sacks in seven NFL seasons. The expansion Omaha Nighthawks got all three players, leaving them in the catbird seat as the UFL's next dynasty (if any of these guys actually suit up). We're assuming the only reason LenDale White(notes) wasn't drafted was that he couldn't be bothered to register.

The origin of Mike Nolan's departure from his role as the Denver Broncos' defensive coordinator was a series of run blitzes he sent against the Colts in Week 13. Nolan, who engineered one of the biggest defensive turnarounds of the last two decades, learned what everyone else already knew - if you land on Josh McDaniels' hot list for any reason, you're going bowling elsewhere. Nolan's now in Miami, and has been replaced in Denver by the more obedient Don "Wink" Martindale. We can't make this stuff up.

Patriots receiver Wes Welker is way ahead of schedule in his rehab, having undergone ACL surgery just four months ago. He was on the field for New England's Wednesday OTAs, making cuts on the field and taking his knee brace off without a care afterward. It's welcome news for the fanbase of a team that seems to be drifting away from the idea of Tom Brady(notes) as an ongoing concern.

In a 1998 game between the Seahawks and Jets, the inability of Phil Luckett's crew to tell the difference between Vinny Testaverde's(notes) helmet and a football brought about the return of instant replay to the NFL. Should the Jim Joyce blown call that denied Armando Galarraga a perfect game be the same type of clarion call for Major League Baseball? Yahoo's own Jeff Passan thinks so, and I agree. Umps have less to watch on a play-by-play basis than football referees of any stripe, and if they're still blowing calls of that magnitude, something has to be done. And as Joe West has displayed, some of these guys need a lesson in humility -- though it's worth mentioning that Joyce himself has handled his mistake as responsibly as it is possible to do.

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