Excerpts from reader commentary on News stories and staffers' online blog postings last week. Online comments come from registered users, but comments to the blogs can be posted under pen names.
No Pro Bowl Picks?: News sports reporter Jay Skurski's article on the fact that no Bills were selected for the Pro Bowl brought this comment from John Mamon of Woodstock, Ga.:
Injuries certainly hurt us this year -- they exposed the lack of real depth we have. Green Bay won the Super Bowl with lots of injuries but they had a roster with good depth. We are at least one off-season away from being a playoff contender and probably two away from having the depth of most other franchises. And on Jason Peters -- I totally supported shipping him off. Why pay big money to a guy who played lazy? He still isn't a top-five left tackle. Just my opinion
Gregory Wright of Lititz, Pa., added:
It's a shame Fred Jackson was hurt. He likely would have been chosen -- was on pace for a standout year. This was one of Jason Peters' best seasons, and the yards Shady McCoy racked up are in large measure because of big 71's blocks. Other years, I thought Peters got in on rep alone.
Roy Swonger of Merrimack, N.H., had another viewpoint:
I hope we don't have anybody in the Pro Bowl. As Chris said, the game is a joke. Worse than that, it's a potential for injury in a meaningless contest that nobody watches. I live in New Hampshire, and still remember the year that Patriots rookie Robert Edwards saw his career essentially ended by the rookie flag football game on the beach in Hawaii. The Pro Bowl should be changed to be a recognition award without the actual game, period. It's not just pointless, it's dangerous.
Back on track: News staff reporter Dan Herbeck's follow-up piece on former homeless veteran Clarence O. Rounds and his recent return to the "grid" elicited this comment from Jeremy Lewis of Buffalo:
It's a sad story that is only going to get sadder. So many veterans come home from war carrying scars that will never heal. With the staggering amount of servicemen and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with severe PTSD and brain injuries, stories like this are going to be played out for years.
Standing Tall: News Niagara reporter Nancy A. Fischer's article on the Gerhardt family and Allen Gerhardt, the Niagara County sheriff's deputy who lost his legs five months ago, brought this show of support from Jeffrey Wojcik of North Tonawanda:
Deputy Gerhardt, I commend you for having the intestinal fortitude to persevere. I, too, became an amputee almost four years ago in April 2008. At the time, I was a U.S. Customs officer. I was off-duty, taking my Harley for a ride down the boulevard and ended up T-boning a '98 Cadillac. My life was saved, thanks in large part to the presence of a U.S. Marine, who immediately went to work on me and tied a tourniquet. I am forever grateful to that Marine to this day as I am sure your gratitude will endure forever with your colleagues. I left U.S. Customs and am still employed in a law enforcement-related field. I continue to help other amputees whenever I can, letting them know that they are not alone and can still achieve their goals. Whatever your goals are currently, I have no doubt in my mind that you will surpass them and make your family proud.
Buffalo Sabres: News sports reporter Mike Harrington's article, "Power play clicking for Sabres," led Allan Suchinsky of Kensington, Md., to ask:
Why has it taken years for this team to figure out that quick puck movement is the key to a successful power play? Someone named Ruff has apparently been clueless all this time. By the way, someone should tell him that good fore-checking can also do wonders for you.