You have to wonder if Tiger Woods will ever come back to the PGA Tour. Some may even wonder if he has stage fright.
Whatever it is, Woods took another PR hit this week after his decision to withdraw from this week’s Safeway Open, a tournament he committed to play in just three days earlier. This decision shows a complete disregard for the game.
Woods committed to play the Safeway Open on Friday, causing a frenzy of interest in the tournament with ticket sales doubled and hotels within miles of the course booked. And three days later, he withdrew, leaving the tournament officials and sponsors with egg on their faces, thousands of fans in a lurch, some out of money spent and everyone involved out of luck.
Woods stated on his website that his health is good and that he feels strong but his game is vulnerable and not where it needs to be.
Okay, so Woods had game on Friday and lost it over the weekend. If this were health-related, his withdrawal would be totally understandable. But it is not.
Is one of the greatest players of all time, winner of 14 major championships and 79 career PGA tournaments, afraid to walk to the first tee and show his game in public? Will he ever return to the Tour?
Most everyone was looking forward to Woods returning this week. There’s still a fascination attached to him coming back. People wonder how close he can come to the greatness that had him on a fast track toward shattering Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major championships.
But the more things like Monday happen with Woods, the more he becomes a sideshow. Eventually, people are going to stop caring, not only about how he plays whenever he comes back but whether he comes back at all.
Will Jerry Mess This Up Too?
The Dallas Cowboys are off to a 4-1 start behind the excellent play of rookie quarterback Dak Prescott. It has been quite some time since the Cowboys have started this fast. But leave it to controversial and stubborn owner/general manager, Jerry Jones, to possibly find a way to mess things up.
Jones announced his intention to bench Prescott in favor of often-injured Tony Romo when Romo recovers from his current back injury. He stated that Romo is the Cowboys’ number one quarterback. As popular as Romo is in Dallas, this decision will likely not be received well in Texas. The Cowboys have had a number of impressive wins and Prescott has yet to throw an interception.
Jones’ decisions over the years have led to a love-hate relationship with Dallas fans. If Prescott and the Cowboys keep on winning, he may want to rethink this decision.
A quarter of the NFL season is already complete and there have been a number of surprises.
The underachievers include the 1-4 Carolina Panthers. Cam Newton is recovering from a concussion and if you don’t think they miss Josh Norman, go to YouTube and watch how Matt Ryan threw for 503 yards against Carolina. Another warning sign is that the 2016 Panthers already have turned the ball over half as many times as they did all of last year.
The Arizona Cardinals are 2-3 and their quarterback, Carson Palmer, is recovering from a concussion. The Cardinals went deep into the playoffs last year before being eliminated by the Super Bowl bound Panthers.
The New York Jets won 10 games last season. They are now 1-4 and have not come close to winning a game of late.
The Indianapolis Colts are 2-3 despite having an easy schedule. This team has a franchise quarterback in Andrew Luck, but fail annually to give him an offensive line or a defense.
The New Orleans Saints used to scare opposing defenses. What is scary is just how bad the 1-3 Saints’ defense is.
The Miami Dolphins are 1-4 and still think Ryan Tanneyhill is a franchise quarterback.
A few overachieving teams are out there. I already spoke of the 4-1 Dallas Cowboys.
The Denver Broncos are 4-1 with a pair of rookie quarterbacks, Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch, starting games.
The Atlanta Falcons are off to a 4-1 start with the most productive offense in the league.
And how about the unbeaten Minnesota Vikings. No Teddy Bridgewater, no Adrian Peterson, no problem for Mike Zimmer with Sam Bradford stepping in for Bridgewater at quarterback and Jerrick McKinnon replacing Peterson at runningback. And the Vikings have the best defense in the game.
Photos: Tiger Woods in flux; and Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones