May 01, 2014
By Chris Strauss
From : USA Today Sports
Jay Glazer is feeling restless.
Like most pro football fans and experts dealing with the extra buildup that comes with the first May draft in league history, the FOX Sports NFL insider can’t wait for the hype to end and actual news to start coming in next week.
“It’s driving me nuts,” Glazer told For the Win last Friday. “I’m ready for it.”
The usually indefatigable Glazer, who’ll be broadcasting the draft’s first three rounds from Radio City Music Hall exclusively on FOX Sports Radio as well as appearing on FOX Sports 1′s “America’s Pregame” and “FOX Sports Live,” is also eager to get back to his usual pace as he continues to recover from a life-threatening bout of aspiration double pneumonia he suffered in March following routine back surgery.
“I’m happy to be alive. There’s going to be good days and bad days for months,” Glazer said. “With this thing called aspiration double pneumonia, it’s basically where both your lungs, mine had gotten burned and infected from ingesting all this stomach acid and bile and stuff that I drowned in. Thank God these doctors saw and that God was watching over me because these guys saved my life. I get to go home to New York and I definitely look at things differently now. For me, the draft will be a happier one than normal. But at the same time I don’t know how much I respond to the grind yet.”
He’ll certainly be giving it his best effort. Glazer, who broke the news last year that the Kansas City Chiefs would be drafting Eric Fisher, not fellow tackle Luke Joeckel, expects to be at the forefront of similar developments in the next week.
“It was great because everybody had just put in their mock drafts. And all of a sudden, boom, I come out with Fisher’s going to be the number one pick and every mock draft in the world is screwed up,” Glazer said. “I knew the information and was trying to make sure it’s current and make sure it’s solid and they absolutely are doing it. They did an unbelievable smokescreen on that. The Chiefs had people fooled. They should have worked for the government last year. This year, nobody’s really in love with the same people. Everybody loves a guy like Sammy Watkins. There are certain guys you go we love him but we have a certain need. The most talented guy in this draft – it’s really not close – Jadeveon Clowney’s it but you have all this other stuff. Last year there wasn’t really that clearly best player in the draft. There were a bunch of solid guys.”
Glazer sees even more potential misinformation in this year’s draft than last, with much of it being agent-driven.
“The one thing I hate more than anything with the draft, I hate it, I absolutely despise it, is the one unnamed source. I can get an unnamed source to give you a draft rating,” Glazer laughed. “I could get an unnamed source to say anything. Everybody in the world talks. That’s incredibly irresponsible but I think people feel that pressure and that need to put out more draft stuff than everybody else. I just feel the need to put out the right stuff.”
Glazer, one of the few NFL experts who doesn’t prepare a mock draft, plans to take that approach on May 8th. While some analysts have been criticized for tipping picks on Twitter before they’re announced during the ESPN and NFL television broadcasts, he says his mantra remains constant – provide facts to the fans.
“Do you tip? Do you not tip? It’s my job to give you the information as fast as possible,” Glazer said. “But I’m not just going to do it or tip just to be a [expletive]. I’m going to tell you ‘This is what’s going on here. This team wants him in three picks. This team does also … let’s see if they’re going to move up….’ Something along those lines. I don’t tweet it because I don’t work for Twitter. I save it for Fox Sports Radio. I don’t work for Twitter. I work for FOX.”
When he’s not working for the network, Glazer forges many of his NFL connections by training players at his mixed martial arts facility in Las Vegas during the offseason. The program now has worked on the conditioning of over 100 players, with Kyle Long, Jared Allen and Clay Matthews among them.
Those workouts have taken a hiatus since Glazer’s illness, not that the participants were above ribbing him about it while he was in the hospital.
“This thing happens and Kyle Long, who exploded with this training, he’d call and I’m in critical care in the hospital and he’d be like ‘So are you done with the pneumonia thing, can we train now?’” Glazer said, noting that Allen, Long’s new Bears teammate, dialed to express similar sentiments.
“I’m working with a Yeti and Sasquatch,” he joked. “My near-death experience just cramped their style. Sorry guys. I was being very selfish by almost dying. It was the craziest thing that’s ever happened though. I’m used to feeling kind of invincible and going at life like I am. All of a sudden I’m sitting there and laying in bed and looking up talking to God for a couple straight days. Man, I still can’t believe it. I’m still in shock that the whole thing happened because hell, I’ve never been in the hospital before.”
Although his personal workouts are nowhere near what he’s used to, Glazer says that he’s getting back in the gym and is also trying to regain the frantic workpace he’s accustomed to, with the realization that it’s going to take him some time to get his full energy back.
“I don’t know how I’m going to be yet. I’m making my calls and I’m trying to talk and I just die out,” he said. “I’m trying to will myself back into it but this is one of the things you can’t will. I’m intending to go into this draft guns blazing. That’s my intention.”