"The Stack" is back on this Monday with a slightly shorter version as we are a little late in getting this out and a little under the weather. So let's get right to it and see what made "the stack" for today Monday, March 19:
1. NFL free agency news
Peyton Manning still has not made a decision yet, but he has made it known that only three teams remain in the chase. Those teams are the San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans and Denver Broncos. I'm a little surprised the Arizona Cardinals aren't in the mix and they couldn't wow Manning more. Based on the three teams that Manning is choosing though, San Francisco is the best option. They have the great defense. They have great special teams. And they have pieces on offense to be great. They just need a quarterback and maybe some better wide receivers. Well the 49ers have taken care of the wide receivers, signing both Randy Moss and Mario Manningham. It appears on paper that the 49ers are the best of the three teams then. And ultimately, that is where I think he will go.
The dominos should start to fall then after Manning makes his decision. One of those dominos was Matt Flynn, but he has already made his decision. He signed a three-year $26 million deal with the Seattle Seahawks. Some are surprised he didn't follow his offensive coordinator Joe Philbin to Miami. It's a good move by the Seahawks who only have Tavaris Jackson as their viable option. Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Clark has tweeted that no one wants to go to Miami because of who is running the organization. Presumably, that means GM Jeff Ireland. There may be some truth to that as Ireland has butted heads with players and even others in upper management in the past.
Speaking of the Dolphins, they are talking to quarterback Alex Smith on a deal. It would be a good move for the Dolphins and makes even more sense that Manning would sign with the 49ers. Again for more news on NFL free agency, check out sites like PFT and nfl.com.
2. March Madness thoughts.
My bracket is in shambles like most others I'm assuming. I mean seriously, two 15-2 upsets? Norfolk State over Missouri? Lehigh over Duke? Are you kidding me? Two of my final four teams are out as Missouri and Vanderbilt were both sent packing. It has not been a good tournament based on may picking, but one of the more exciting tournaments we've seen in a while, especially on Friday when there were upsets galore.
Even if your bracket is worthy of being thrown in the trash, how can you not love this tournament? When teams like Lehigh and Norfolk State pull off what they did, that's what makes the tournament so special. They are the Cinderella's of the dance and even though they are not moving on to the second weekend, they provided some memorable moments.
Big injury news for #1 seed North Carolina who may be without star guard Kendall Marshall who fractured his non-shooting wrist in Sunday's game against Creighton. At this point, no one knows if he'll be able to play this week or the remainder of the tournament. Not even head coach Roy Williams knows. This is a huge injury for the Tar Heels. They were just getting John Henson back from a wrist injury and now that Marshall has this wrist fracture, it could spell doom to a team that looks like they're going to win it all. We'll have to wait and see what the results are and what decision is made. Hopefully something will come out later today.
We're set up for some great moments this weekend at the as the regional finals take place. The East Regional (Boston) and West Regional (Phoenix) take place Thursday and Saturday while the Midwest (St. Louis) and South Regional (Atlanta) take place Friday and Sunday. All one seeds remain. Who will be the first one out or will they all survive and move on to the Final Four? Will a double digit seed continue to move on? Will Baylor's uniforms make someone go blind? Can't wait til Thursday when the tournament resumes. It has been great so far and is, in my opinion, the best sporting event in the world. If you disagree, tell me why and tell me what sporting event is your favorite.
Coming up Tuesday: Reaction to the biggest sports headlines and stories from Monday.
Comments and suggestions on what to write about are always welcomed and appreciated.