They call it the July 22 double-issue of ESPN the Magazine, but you may have already noticed it.
Hard not to notice it.
San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick is on the cover.
And he is naked.
(Actually there are eight different covers, each with its own naked person. I suppose you could collect all of them but maybe you shouldn't brag about it at work.)
Swimsuits, Sports Illustrated? We don't need any of your swimsuits. We're talking — are you ready for this — total nudity!
Of course it is some of the most cleverly photographed nudity you will ever see (or not really see). No clothes but plenty of strategically placed hands, footballs, basketballs, water sprays, a motorcycle (!) but mostly some very carefully raised thighs.
So the nudity is not, you know, totally total.
The photo that caught my eye ... No, wait, let's start again ...
Golfer Gary Player is 77 years old. He is shown in his backswing with no sign of Nike anywhere. If he's wearing cleated shoes, we can't see — but it would be funny to see a guy wearing nothing but cleats.
Back to topic. He looks great.
I have some history with Mr. Player. We spoke often on the PGA Tour in the late '70s and '80s. I'm not sure if Mr. Player ever forgot a face but I'm pretty sure he never forgot a bulging belly. Every time I tried to talk to him about golf, it turned into a lecture about health.
OK, he had my best interests at heart and apparently has never heard the siren call of a chocolate eclair.
But then there was that one Wednesday the day before a Disney World golf tournament began. Mr. Player was demonstrating the art of hitting the golf ball to about 100 to 200 fans. And I stopped by.
Mr. Player asked me to help him by addressing the ball. I walked over and resisted the temptation to say, "Hello, ball," 'cause I knew he would not be amused. So I positioned myself next to the ball and mentally saw myself as Tom Weiskopf. (Ask your grandfather.)
Mr. Player apparently visualized me as a killer whale.
"If Jerry hits a poor shot, don't be too harsh," he told the audience, "because, after all, he can't see the ball."
Friends, it's about 30 years later and I still haven't thought of a snappy comeback.
So he's part of "the body issue" of a national magazine and I still have my eclairs.
I'm calling it a draw.
NFL thoughts: AFC West
Denver, 13-3 last season, over/under 11.5.
Broncos have been knocked out in the playoffs the last two years by eventual Super Bowl participants -- New England and Baltimore. They are loaded. Oddly enough I think their biggest worry is Peyton Manning. When will the decline begin? But, again, they are loaded on both sides. They open the season on Thursday, Sept. 5, by hosting champ Baltimore. Talk about a great way to get Big Mo on your side. If you like someone in the AFC better, let me know who and why.
San Diego, 7-9 last season, over/under 7.5.
Seriously, I am so sick of these guys. Every year they look good on paper, play terribly and then win a few at the end to keep you wondering. They do have new management including a new coaching staff, which must help. No! I will not be suckered again. Forget them.
Kansas City, 2-14 last season, over/under 7.
Everyone's preseason sweetheart to jump from bottom to possible wild-card contention. New coach in Andy Reid and new QB in Alex Smith. Of course both were available for a reason but they certainly are upgrades. And there is a fantasy favorite in RB Jamaal Charles who should be about No. 6 on your RB cheat sheet. An 8-8 season sounds about right.
Oakland, 4-12 last season, over/under 5.5.
And then there are the Raiders. They were rotten and now they are rebuilding from there. Best shot for next year's first pick in the draft.
A moment about Paula Deen . . .
"What? Paula Deen? Greene, are you all right?"
Who ever knows if I am all right but I need your help about Paula (and this gives some of you a break from all that NFL stuff.)
Not my place to tell you how you should feel about Ms. Deen. That's up to you. We know because of prior offensive racial language that she was dropped by Food Network and numerous sponsors, including Ballantine Books.
Here's my question: Why have sales of her previous cookbooks quadrupled? Stir that in your pot.
Summer vacay at — Snake Island?
Looking for that special getaway that will impress your friends when you get back (or if you get back)? Let me tell you about a little island 90-some miles off the Eastern coast of Brazil. Officially known as "Ilha de Queimada Grande," it's usually called Snake Island.
That's because the most conservative estimates suggest you will find a snake every three feet. And most of these snakes are the golden lancehead, a nicely named but extremely poisonous pit viper.
That makes the island so dangerous that the Brazilian Navy has forbidden anyone to set foot there. The snakes, incidentally, feast upon migratory birds who must be extremely stupid to keep landing there.
There's a story about a fisherman who landed there to pick bananas.
It's a short story with a terrible ending and no bananas.
The complete story of Snake Island is courtesy of The Beat of Sports, where you learn the strangest things. You can find more by going here: http://thesent.nl/198UT79.
And when you go to that site, there also are links for Monkey Island, Whistling Island and the ever-popular Stromboli Island — so there's something for everyone.
These are the notes, folks
• Speaking of snakes, a copy of "The Real Book About Snakes" was returned to a library in Ohio — 41 years overdue and with $299.30 (Two cents a day.) A note with the book explained that the renter was "a slow reader." Study hard, kids.
• Thursday was the fifth anniversary of the opening of "The Dark Knight," and I'm still not sure if anyone since has given a better performance than Heath Ledger as The Joker.
• OK, Yankee fans, a show of hands. Who is thrilled about the return of A-Rod? — Oh, come on.
• Because of the harping of the media, I now want Johnny Manziel to lead A&M to a perfect season — and play Ohio State for the national championship.
• Which has it been for you: Early morning British Open or constant Comic-Con live streaming? Ah, life is full.
Jerry has been doing both and will probably not shut up about it Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to noon on The Beat of Sports, hosted by Marc Daniels on 740theGame radio. And he's ready to reply to just about anything sent to email@example.com. Have a great British Open Sunday.