Depending on where you live, January is the month when most outdoor activities slow down with a few exceptions, ice fishing, snowmobiling, late season goose and duck hunting, and in a few states, the last few days of deer hunting. For all of you football enthusiast, the NFL Playoffs are in full swing! If your team is still in, congratulations and good for you. Our beloved Chiefs didn’t make it!! Things are looking up, the Chiefs just announce the hiring of Charlie Weis and Romeo Crennel, to former offensive and defensive coordinators for the New England Patriots. Hopefully they will help jump start both the offense and the defense. I personally believe it is a very good move, they both had tremendous successes with the Patriots and bring a wealth of playoff history. When reorganizing a team I feel it is critical to have both coaches and players in place who have had playoff experience. How can you coach about winning in the playoffs if you haven’t been there! Making the playoffs is the first step in winning the Super Bowl and that is every teams objective. Now we have coaches in place who have successfully accomplished both. For the teams still alive in the playoffs, Dallas and their defense look hard to beat. Being from the AFC, I still like the Charges, who I was originally drafted by, and the Colts. You can’t rule out the play of Patton Manning. Back to the outdoors! This is the time to get all of your fall hunting, camping and fishing gear cleaned up. Cleaning your firearms before putting them away is extremely important. The obvious, make sure they are unloaded before working on them and putting them up. This is a good time to take off all that old fishing line and tune up the reels. Make sure all of your camping gear is dry before putting them in storage, mold can develop quickly and cause a lot of damage to your equipment. For you Turkey hunters, this is a great time to work on your calls. Some seasons are just a few months away! Normally I can drive everyone out of the house with some yelps and cackles!
No question the fall is my favorite time of the year. High School, College and NFL Football, not to mention all the fall hunting activities. Our waterfowl season just opened here in Kansas and Missouri. It has been unusually warm but a front just move in the past few days. I hope that means more ducks! Kansas archery deer season is ongoing and the Missouri firearm season just opened last Saturday. I have had some pretty good success hunting ducks. I haven’t seen anything worth taking yet as far as the deer go. The best news is that the Kansas Pheasant population is up and the weather is perfect for that. We will be headed to western Kansas in about two weeks for a pheasant hunt. Taking several former Chiefs players and Kansas City Royals players. I will keep you all posted.
Now for football. I have NO comments regarding the Chiefs, they are struggling to say the least. We need help on the offensive line. If our QB makes it through the season uninjured it will be miracle. College football around here is also a little depressing. Both KU and MU had great expectations coming into the season, which they have not lived up too. Now on the other hand, Kansas State has exceeded everyone’s expectations, that is the lone bright spot. Our area High Schools are deep into the State playoffs, which I really enjoy. I head up the High School Coach of the Week and Coach of the Year program for the NFL and the Chiefs. After this weeks games, I will be making the selections for both Kansas and Missouri, stay tuned!
This past Sunday was the last day of the 2009 Missouri tukey season. The weather was a little unpredictable and wasn’t sure about the wind. I woke up at 4:15 A.M. and there were stars in the sky and no wind. I thought, what the heck, go and if nothing else check on how bad the flooding was. Well, as the story goes, I put on my vest grabed my calls and headed for the woods. There is a hay field on top of the ridge surrounded by hardwoods where I hunt, a great place to do a locator call. I owl hooted and to my surprise a bird gobbled at one of the usual spots the birds normally roost. With all the trees leafed out, it was easy to get close to the bird. I owl hooted one more time just to pin point him. I knew exactly where he was and where he may go. After calling to him with a few soft putts and tree yelps, he finally cut me off during my calls, which told me he knew where I was. After another 10 or 15 minutes of discourse between me and the gobbler, he flew down. When he hit the ground he was only 70 yards from me and for the next 10 minutes he never made a sound. I was confident that he was on his way but just being silent about his approach. I never called again and he never gobbled again until a crow flew over and called. The bird shook the timber with his gobble and was less than forty yards right at the end of my barrel. One minute later he stepped out on the path at 20 yards, the magic distance. The gobbler was mine at 6:20 A.M. and on a morning I wasn’t going to hunt.
Don’t miss on these late season birds. They will still turn all you hunters on with their thundering gobbles. It’s true, it never gets old
The Outdoor Quaterback
Two of the most exciting days in a college football players life, the NFL Player Draft, has come and gone. Some players walk away from these two days financially set for life, if they manage their mony wisely. Some college players walk away scratching their heads wondering how in the world I could have gone undrafted. Most of those players were both high school and college stars. Several of them were All-Americans and have very seldom faced a more deflating moment in their athletic careers. Many of the of these undrafted players will get an opportunity as a free agent and there has been many free agents who have become All-Pro and NFL Hall of Famers. This is the time that the true character of these players comes out. Most of them will have a chip on their shoulders and the mind set to prove to the rest of the NFL, that they all made a mistake by not drafting them. Watch out for those players because they are motivated and dagerous.
Now there are those player who were drafted in the first round who have been blessed with natural size, speed and talent and a few, which happens every year, will be a bust or don’t live up to everyones expectations. In most instances it more of a character issue than it is their playing ability. They take their position for granted, they become lazy and now that they are financially fixed, become less motivated. Watch for those players as well, you will hear about them early on. Then there are those high draft picks who exceed everyone expectations and is because of their character and their desier to prove to the team that drafted them that they made the right choice. You will hear about them early on and often.
My old team the Kansas City Chiefs, I believe did a workmans type job. No big hoopla, just players who should fit the new scheem. They appear to be sound players who will compete well for their positions. The question always is, how quickly can they make the transition from college to the NFL. Only time will tell, but I feel good about what the Chiefs did.
The Outdoor Quarterback
For some of you Spring Turkey season has already begun, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, you got it, in the south. On April 1st, both the Kansas youth and archery turkey seasons open.
For you veteran turkey hunters who can’t wait to get to the woods, here is your chance to accomplish two things, take a youngster to the woods and polish your spring turkey hunting skills. This is a great opportunity to take a young turkey hunter to the woods and experience the thrill of spring turkey hunting. With no hunting pressure on the birds they should be very vocal and no matter if you are a novice or verteran turkey hunter, those first gobbles of the spring always gets your heart pumping.
Now for you seasoned and experienced turkey hunters, who are looking for the ultimate challenge, grab your bow and head to the woods. Taking a spring gobbler with archery equipment is a true test of your hunting skills. The birds in Kansas are pretty vocal right now and they are just beginning to break up. With very few hunters in the woods, I like your chances.
Let me here about your hunts.
The Outdoor Quaterback
The Chiefs made a bold move in making a trade for Matt Cassell from the New England Patriots. This move adds a proven starter to the stable of young quarterbacks. It is my opinion that there will be very strong competition at this position. Tyler Thigpen proved last year that he can play in the NFL. Brodie Croyle may have the best arm of all the quarterbacks but must remain healthy to prove he can be durable in the NFL
I am proud to announce that DiscoverTheOutdoors.Com has re-launched it’s site. With over 4.5 million pages of information geared towards the outdoors, DTO.Com is the largest Internet site for the outdoor enthusiast on the World Wide Web. Please take a look and give us your opinion. We are pretty thick skinned around here, so let us know what you think.
Each week I will bring you new information regarding the outdoors, hopefully to keep you up-dated and informed.
First, Spring Turkey season is just around the corner, make sure if you are going to be hunting a state you are not familiar with or have never hunted in, that you obtain your license in advance. Most states have online licenses sales. A few states require a draw for your permit or licenses, and most states require that you have taken Hunter Education. Each state has different rules and regulations so check them out before you leave town. You can log on the DTO.Com to receive information about each states agency governing their Spring Turkey seasons.
Good luck, The Outoor Quarterback