Chat with Ashley Fox
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN.com NFL columnist Ashley Fox stops by to chat.
Fox joined ESPN.com in 2011 after 11 years as a writer and columnist at the Philadelphia Inquirer, where she covered the National Football League, the Philadelphia Eagles and the Philadelphia 76ers. She also has worked at the Louisville Courier-Journal and Sports Illustrated. A North Carolina native, Fox lives in suburban Philadelphia with her husband, daughter and son.
Send your questions now and join Fox on Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET!
Ashley Fox (3:00 PM)
Greetings, everyone. Thanks for joining me on this beautiful Tuesday. Let's get going.
Nick33 (Pittsburgh, PA)
Why is the Washington Redskins name so important to you all of a sudden? It wasn't a problem for 14 years, and now its racist? Why would Snyder lose money changing his name so the less than 2% can be happy? He is not being stubborn or a bully, he is just standing by his team name that has never been a problem until now.
Ashley Fox (3:01 PM)
I wrote about the issue because of the politicians who wrote to him, Roger Goodell and the other 31 NFL owners asking that he change the name. It is a hot topic, and gave my opinion. That's what my job is.
Harrison Obeid (New York)
This is a response to your recent article regarding the Redskins:I'd like to provide an opposing viewpoint on this matter, and hopefully engage a discussion regarding it. Why would the Redskins name themselves after a group of people they are trying to offend, or a group of people they feel are inferior? By referring to themselves as redskins aren't they implying that Native Americans are powerful and to be respected? Would they name themselves after something they felt would derive disrespect, or disdain, from their opponents?I want you to read these articles and respond:http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/opinion/redskins-not-so-black-and-white-145172 ?http://newsbusters.org/blogs/ken-shepherd/2013/05/03/despite-liberal-media-push-poll-shows-vast-majority-americans-arent-of ?http://sonofwashington.com/2013/03/01/native-americans-speaking-out-in-support-of-redskins/ ?http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-Sports/2013/05/30/Native-American-Chief-Would-Be-Offended-If-Redskins-DID-Change-Name ?What's offensive is your self-righteous position in this matter. You averred that your position on the matter is 'obvious,' yet in the poll that your own ESPN posted in regards to the matter, almost 80% of the individuals believed that the name should not be changed. Does that provide volition to your stance? The assertions you make are not universal.
Ashley Fox (3:03 PM)
I will give those links a read later. I appreciate that there are differing opinions on this topic. It is a complicated issue, so much so that a former player whom I really respect wouldn't go near it because of the potential fallout.
The Perfect Solution.The Washington PowhatanThe Powhatan were the tribe that lived in the DC region. This name will honor that tribe and promote Native American awareness.The Perfect Solution
Ashley Fox (3:05 PM)
I think there could be some very cool, creative alternatives. And an interesting discourse.
Marc (Medina, OH)
You Washington Redskins article is just another example of letting the minority rule the majority. A small group of native americans find it offensive, so we have to make a change - what a bunch of garbage. I know several native americans, none of them is offended by it, most don't care, and a few of them think it is cool. So, please, can we stop bending over backwards for a small group of people and tell them to just act like adults. It is not derogatory in manner, it is not malicious, so get over it.
Ashley Fox (3:06 PM)
Another opinion. I don't agree with you, but there you go.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What Happened to former NFL Quarterback Jim Kelly? & How did he Get that?
Ashley Fox (3:08 PM)
Jim said earlier this week that he has cancer of his upper jaw bone and will have surgery, I believe, this month. I talked to him two weeks ago about Marv Levy and he sounded upbeat and happy. He had some good stories and insights. He didn't mention his health problems. Certainly wish him the best.
Graziano said he'd consider picking the Cowboys as NFC East favorites. Please tell me he's wrong.
Ashley Fox (3:11 PM)
Did he now? I will bring that up with him when I see him on Thursday. The NFC East is one of the more intriguing divisions, given the questions each team faces. I really don't see the Cowboys being the favorite. And now Callahan will be calling the plays for Garrett, who enters the season on the proverbial hot seat. I'm not loving that. My default pick is the Giants. But I really think the division is as up for grabs as it has been in a while.
Ed (Queens Village)
What is your take on games being played in London and Toronto? I'm not a fan of them. Why would home team be willing to give up 1 true home game. If I was a STH I be miffed that I can only attend 7 regular season games and 2 preseason games.
Ashley Fox (3:14 PM)
Well, the Bills do it for economic reasons. As for the London games, I, too, would be miffed -- okay, more than miffed -- if I was a season-ticket holder and lost one of my cherished home games. Also, coaches don't love them. The travel is tough, although all four teams playing there this year have a bye afterward. But the league loves them. It expands their footprint. I'm sure one day we'll see a franchise there. I'd like for the league to get Los Angeles figured out first.
johnny simon (new york city)
Why don't you like MMA? It is a sport after all.
Ashley Fox (3:15 PM)
Who said I don't like MMA?
Tony (Richmond, CA)
What are your thoughts on the McNabb-RGIII situatons? Doesn't Donovan just need to be quiet and move on? He comes off looking bad as usual, speaking out publicly more out of resentment, like a scorned lover, than concern for RGIII's weel being. Also, do you think Donovan's perceived lack of "street cred", and being viewed as a company man, factored into his advice being shunned by the Griffins?
Ashley Fox (3:19 PM)
I don't know why Griffin didn't accept McNabb's offer of advice, but I agree with you that Donovan didn't come across looking that great. Everybody knows he didn't have a great tenure in Washington and didn't love the Shanahans. He came across as looking for the spotlight. At least that's how I saw it. And the thing is, Griffin is a really bright, savvy guy. If he wants or needs advice, I'm sure he will seek it.
How devastating is the Jason Pierre Paul injury news to the Giants?
Ashley Fox (3:21 PM)
It's not good. They're saying he's projected to be out 12 weeks, which would put him in jeopardy for the start of the season. We're seeing a lot of surgery news pop up lately because players prefer to rehab and rest before finally agreeing to go under the knife. No one likes surgery.
Am I the only one who thinks the Browns win the Division and shock the world??... Steelers are old and breaking down, The Raven's cut half their team and the Bengals are... well the Bengals...They have good young talent that fits a down field attack scheme...
Ashley Fox (3:24 PM)
Yes. You are. But I agree that they aren't as far off as it might appear. They've got some nice, young talent. They aren't completely bare. Don't turn your nose up at Cincinnati or their defense. It should be one of the best in the league. And Baltimore isn't going to disappear even after losing all those guys on defense.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Did you ever meet Deacon Jones? If so, is he as scary and crazy in person as he appears on televison? May he rest in peace.
Ashley Fox (3:25 PM)
Sadly, no. I did not. From everything I've heard, he was an amazing storyteller. And he had a huge impact on the game. I was reading Twitter this morning, and you could see the love, from Goodell to Michael Strahan and J.J. Watt. It is a sad day.
Dino (Rochester, N.Y.)
What's your take on John Madden being ranked only number 12 on the Greatest Coaches Series? He has the best winning pct.of any coach with at least 100 wins,and has a winning record vs.all the HOF coaches he faced.
Ashley Fox (3:28 PM)
As someone who participated in the rankings, I will just say that it was a very, very, very difficult process. I think what probably hurt Madden -- if you want to say that No. 12 is too low, which I don't -- simply was the longevity. Look at who is ahead of him. Would you move him past Joe Gibbs? Or Tom Landry (who I think is too low at No. 8)? You can probably guess the rest of the list, and I don't think Madden jumps any of those guys. But again, I don't think being No. 12 is a bad thing.
JeremyB666 (Kewadin, MI)
Will Calvin Johnson break the 2,000 yard barrier in 2013?!
Ashley Fox (3:32 PM)
He got oh so close last year, finishing with 1,964 receiving yards and 122 catches, both career highs. I'm sure he'd like to raise his touchdown number from last year (he had five) more than his receiving yardage total. But yes, I would think they're going to continue use him to exploit defenses. This could be the year he tops 2K.
Ashley, I just have a little problem with some of the first questions posted here... With only 32 football teams and significantly more than 32 words in the English language, why is it ok to offend even "less than 2%" of the population? I'm as annoyed as the next person by all the PC stuff, but this isn't saying "man" instead of "person", it was a word used in a derogatory manner in the past. That part is true, obvious, and unequivocal. It may not be now but no one is saying it is. It just seems like a stupid problem to have that has a relatively simple solution. Why not one of the many Native American tribes (as alluded to by Tim) or generic Native American references (i.e. the Washington, D.C. "Tribe")? Or just re-brand entirely (like people aren't going to buy a new RGIII jersey...?): other teams seem to have had good runs with bird names, mythical figures, or Knickerbockers... I understand the argument that only a small percentage of the population is offended, but are we fine that one of the 32 team names in a sport we are known for world-wide Was an insult and Is offensive to anyone?
Ashley Fox (3:33 PM)
Well said, Brian.
Why is everyone so quick to dismiss the Ravens because of the personnel turnover on defense? The ranked #17 last year. This isn't the 2000 team being rebuilt.
Ashley Fox (3:36 PM)
I agree with this. I know this about John Harbaugh: He's been very pleased with the talent that Ozzie Newsome has assembled during his time there. They feel like they've drafted well and while the number of starters they must replace is alarming, they've got young players they are very high on. What I'm looking forward to seeing what Jim Caldwell does in his first full season being the offensive coordinator. He obviously pushed all the right buttons during the playoffs.
Which active NFL QB's would you classify as "elite"?
Ashley Fox (3:38 PM)
The usual suspects: Brady, Manning, Manning, Rodgers, Brees, Roethlisberger. And then there's that tier of young guys who definitely could get there but we just don't know yet, led by the rookies last year, Kaepernick and Cam Newton. Did I leave anybody out?
Keith (Seattle, WA)
Will Peyton "First Round Exit" Manning get the Broncos over the hump this season and back into the Super Bowl? Or will he disappoint the fans, down the strech, in the clutch, like he did last year, and so many times in Indy?
Ashley Fox (3:41 PM)
He's reached the point where he needs to prove it. There are too many first-round (or first game) exits. I'm still not sure what John Fox was really thinking at the end of regulation against the Ravens. But the Broncos are stocked. If they can avoid significant injuries, they should be there again as one of the top teams in the AFC. I love the addition of Welker.
Chris Fiegler (Latham, NY)
If Andy Dalton Exceeds expectations this year and their defense remains solid, do you see Cincinnati as a Top Tier team?
Ashley Fox (3:44 PM)
They could be up there. This is a big year for Dalton. And it is a big "if" you throw out there. I'm not sure he is more than an average quarterback. But that defense is scary and their d-coordinator is one of the most creative in the league. Very underrated.
What do you make of the reports on Trent Richardson being held out until August? Is this simply the Browns being overly cautious or could there be something more serious going on?
Ashley Fox (3:47 PM)
I saw that Rob Chudzinski said that he still expects Richardson to be available for training camp, which isn't surprising he would say that. I think they're having to be cautious and careful with Richardson. It's better to be safe, I agree. But it is not good news that he can't participate now. He hasn't been totally healthy yet, and at some point you've got to wonder if he ever will be.
Joe Flacco (Baltimore)
I thought that I was elite?
Ashley Fox (3:48 PM)
See, I did forget someone.
Christy (San Diego)
So Philip Rivers is not "elite"
Ashley Fox (3:48 PM)
I think he has a lot to prove this season.
Tim (El Cajon, CA)
I actually live in the San Diego area and went to San Diego State University. We are the AZTECS. No one had a problem with that mainly because it is a tribal name, NOT a derogatory nick name like Redskins. The only problem they ran into was the helmet emblem. They changed that and all is well. Redskins really should go.
Ashley Fox (3:49 PM)
Miami of Ohio were the Redskins and while it took 25 years, they eventually changed their name.
JeremyB666 (Kewadin, MI)
What about Matt Stafford as an elite QB? I feel he is almost there but his ability to read coverages has to improve
Ashley Fox (3:50 PM)
Could be. Not there yet. It is an exclusive club.
Ashley Fox (3:50 PM)
Matt Ryan will be there if they can make a playoff run. He's got all the talent in the world.
What's the argument for Landry over Gibbs? I'm sure you've heard the "three Superbowls, three quarterbacks" argument many times before, and also the "he beat Landry's full team with scabs" argument. Both are top-10 coaches, but why Gibbs at 9, when as a coach Gibbs out-coached some of the best when nobody had their best players (except for Landry), willed a team reeling from the loss of Sean Taylor to a playoff berth, and reached the playoffs 50% of the time with teams put together by one of the leagues most incompetent personnel men in history (Vinny Cerato)?
Ashley Fox (3:53 PM)
It was tight. And there were something like 20 of us who voted. I had Gibbs higher than ninth on my ballot, if I remember correctly, but as I said earlier, you get in the top 10 and it was really hard to pick.
If Barkley beats out Vick as the starter, does Vick get released?
Ashley Fox (3:54 PM)
What about Foles? What if Foles beats out Vick? I don't think he would get released, but with Chip Kelly, who knows? I wouldn't have thought DeSean Jackson would be working with the third-string offense, even for a second, and he did. It is impossible to predict. That would certainly send a message.
I am sorry but your article on the "Redskins" was terrible and who are you to decide what is right . And I am a Cowboy fan. You liberals ????
Ashley Fox (3:55 PM)
I was just giving my opinion.
kcchiefsfan200890 (Wichita, Ks)
Do You think there is a chance for The Kansas City Chiefs to win ten games this year?
Ashley Fox (3:57 PM)
Ten? Wow. That would be a fantastic turnaround. I'd have to study their schedule. I do think that there is more talent there than their record reflected and as I've said before I think Alex Smith is a perfect fit for Andy Reid's offense. Now, can they go from four wins to 10? I don't think it's out of the realm of possibility, but it would be asking a lot.
Jim Mora (Stuck in the regular season.)
Will the league be expanding the number of teams that go to the playoffs anytime soon?
Ashley Fox (3:58 PM)
Very funny, Jim. I would expect the league will, but not sure how soon that will happen.
Keenan (Atlanta, GA)
Do you think Chris Johnson will ever regain his 2,000 yard season form?
Ashley Fox (3:59 PM)
I know he thinks he will, but I'm not sure he will. History tells us that no player has ever rushed for 2,000 yards in a season twice in a career. There's a reason.
Ashley Fox (4:00 PM)
Alright everybody, thanks for all the questions and the discussion on Washington's name. I appreciate all of the opinions. Have a great week. We will do it again next week.