Ryan Howard's Venice-style Canal Forces Florida Community to Shift

Ryan Howard's Venice-style Canal Forces Florida Community to Shift

There's a trend among Phillies players (see Harry Leroy Halladay III) to have homes not too far away from the team's spring training facility down in Florida, so it's no surprise Ryan Howard and his $125 million contract extension are putting down some roots in the area.

But not just any roots. In fact, Howard is building one heck of a mansion in the town of Belleair Shore, roughly ten miles from the Phillies spring home at Bright House Field in Clearwater.

The "Casa Del Howard" will surely be an enjoyable spot to head home to after a tough day of spring ball. Local newspaper the Bellaire Bee says the home will be a "$23 million, 17,500-square-foot home on a gulf-front lot covering over an acre."

Derek Jeter and his 30,875-square-foot mansion is not impressed.

Okay, so Howard's mansion isn't exactly the same square footage of the Yankee shortstop's colossal castle, but check out the details of the Phillies slugger's new home, complete with the potential for a gondola ride.

Once again, from the Bellair Bee, the home will feature a:

“Venice-style lazy river running from the swimming pool underneath a series of bridges,” and a bowling alley on the ground level with breakaway walls. Dawson termed the river “a fundamental part of the design.” He said the whole Howard family was really excited by the Venice canal, and would not want to give it up.

But building your own personal Venice-style canal is a time consuming project, and the community of Bellaire Shore recently enacted a tough new ordinance a couple of years back to prevent construction projects from dragging on too long. You see, the ordinance allows for 24 months from the start of construction to the completion, but no way you could get Howard's crib done in that time.

Venice was not built in a day.

So what's the moral of the story? Well, basically the town is going to do what it has to in order to accommodate the unique design aspects of Casa Del Howard. They could simply drag their feet in actually enforcing the building code or deal with the magistrate, who is just a great guy.

Also, the special magistrate “could grant whatever he wants.” He described James Yacavone, the magistrate, as very reasonable.

It's good to be the magistrate.

And it's even better to be the Big Piece.

>>Howard house forces code review [Bellair Bee]

Another award: Carson Wentz named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month

Another award: Carson Wentz named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month

Three games into his NFL career, Carson Wentz might need a bigger trophy case.

The 23-year-old, who picked up his first NFC Offensive Player of the Week award for his performance against Pittsburgh, has been named the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Month for September.

Yes, Wentz's first NFL month was a special one.

The No. 2 pick from North Dakota State has completed 64.7 percent of his passes for 769 yards, five touchdowns and zero interceptions. He's the first rookie in NFL history to put up those numbers in the first three games of a career. And his 102 straight passing attempts without an interception is also a rookie record.

It's hard to believe that a little over a week before the season began, Wentz was scheduled to be the Eagles' third-string quarterback and have a redshirt year. That all changed when de facto GM Howie Roseman traded away starter Sam Bradford and the team decided to start the rookie.

While many thought the decision to start Wentz was the beginning of a long rebuilding year, the rookie has the Eagles off to a fast 3-0 start. Wentz has played very well, but has also been aided by a stout defense, led by NFC Defensive Player of the Month Fletcher Cox.

This week, Wentz is spending some time hunting while the Eagles are on their bye week. He bagged another trophy on Thursday.

The team will be back in action on Oct. 9 in Detroit to face the Lions.

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Watch: Joel Embiid can't get over how much he trusts the process

Watch: Joel Embiid can't get over how much he trusts the process

Joel Embiid really trusts the process. 

And he'll tell you as much over and over.

In fact, JoJo said it so much yesterdady that he was cracking himself up about just how much he trusts the process.

By most accounts, Joel was a bit rusty in the first couple of practices to kick off training camp, but, you know, you've just got to trust the process.

And he does. Trust the process.