Friday, October 30, 2009
Denver @ Baltimore (-3)
So, considering Baltimore is the home team, Vegas thinks that they are equal teams, even though Baltimore has lost 3 straight and Denver has answered every challenge. That seems insane, but when you think Vegas continues to build more and more lavish casinos each year, they probably know something. Now, I definitely think Denver is better in nearly every way, and Denver is one of the three best teams in the AFC, but they are not going 16-0. They will lose sooner or later. Baltimore still has to have some pride. I mean, the old Ray Lewis would have near killed his corners after their awful performance the last three weeks. They are a good enough team to win this at home. However, Denver is going places. Baltimore is too, but unlike Denver, those places do not involve the words "play" and "offs".
Broncos 14 Ravens 20 (BAL)
Cleveland @ Chicago (-13)
Chicago just looked like a CFL team last week, and they are still favored by 13!! That is insane, and just speaks to how awful some of these teams are. In years past, I would feel that this is the game that the Browns can sneak out of with a cheap W, as Jay Cutler continues to do a poor man's Jake Delhomme impression (or a rich man's, depending how you look at it). However, this is not other years, this is 2009, where the poor teams resemble Sudanites, while the good teams are lavish Saudi Princes eating out of gold plates, wiping their faces with platinum napkins. Now, Chicago is that middle class, but that is good enough to win by 13, when they know that if they do not perform, Lovie Smith's seat may begin to feel a bit warmer.
Browns 13 Bears 31 (CHI)
Houston (-3) @ Buffalo
Buffalo is the worst 3 win team in the NFL. Houston is the best 3 loss team in the NFL. Those things speak to me quite loudly, and they are saying "Houston smokes them." Schaub will continue to please Houstonites, and more importantly please my fantasy teams. Honestly, as he continues to pile up numbers at a rate that only one man can match, I begin to pat myself on the bak approxamately every 20 seconds. I am so proud of that pick. Now, if he goes out and breaks his collarbone tomorrow because of wind pressure to his back, then it is my fault for buying into him when he was a huge injury risk, but who gives a shit. The guy produces, and you can throw (and run, and do whatever you damn well please) against Buffalo. If these are the Texans I think they are, and if this team has playoff aspirations, then they take care of business, with Indy looming next week.
Texans 34 Bills 17 (HOU)
Miami @ New York (a) (-3)
Good game, and I am so distraught over picking this game. I don't know what to do. I love the Doplhins. They are exciting to watch. They could have easily beaten both the Colts and the Saints. They are so much better than that 2-4 record. The Jets have been average for a solid month now, disregarding that scrimmage they played last week. They can be had. They are entering a weird part of the NY media right now. The Jets are getting into deals surrounding hot dogs and Sanchez, and their fat head coach who probably eats hot dogs like crack addicts snort. Rex Ryan probably was mad becuase Mark got a hot dog and he did not. Miami is the better team, and I believe that to hell, but the Jets have a lot to play for. They cannot fall too far behind, but neither can the Dolphins. Potentially going 2-5 is more pressing tht potentially going 4-4. I have no real reason for this pick, and when Rex shuts down their wildcat I will feel stupid, but fuck it. I like them. I like the Wildcat. I like Tony Sparano. I hate Ted Ginn's hands, but that is neither here nor there.
Dolphins 23 Jets 17 (MIA)
Seattle @ Dallas (-9.5)
Seattle is coming off a bye, and Dallas is coming off a week of them suddenly getting hype. There is no way Miles Austin ever has two games in a row close to those last two, so he will definitely be less of a factor in this game. Hasselbeck is playing, and they are playing for their season here. Dallas is the type of team that buys into their own hype, and can lay an egg in this game. I'm not buying the Dallas resurgence and I am buying Seattle playing well when they play for thier season. Plus, after seeing what Ced Benson did, Julius Jones has a nice revenge game here. I say he doesn't play much of a factor, but Hasselbeck and his corp has an advantage over a Dallas defense with many, many holes in that back end.
Seahawks 27 Cowboys 20 (SEA)
San Francisco @ Indianapolis (-12)
How is this line not higher? This team is a juggernaut. They have won each of their last 4 games by 21, 17, 22 and 36. They are a great team. If this was 2007, and the niners were going to Foxborough the line would have been like 24, and this team is nearly as good. Alex Smith is playing. That is all I need to know. The Colts defense is quietly the second best scoring defense in the league, and they have the best pass defense in the NFL, and now everyone is back healthy. This defense will dominate. Manning will dominate. Singletary will pull his pants down. Crabtree will not be much of a factor. Life will keep going on in Indy, and return to its mediocre normal in San Fran.
49ers 13 Colts 38 (IND)
New York (n) @ Philadelphia (pick)
This is an interesting game. If this was not Philly, and it were another 4-2 team, I would pick them against a Giants team that looked lifeless a week ago. But these are the Eagles, who historically decide to fuck it up in the middle of the season. The Giants are a better team, bottomline, and they need to make a statement that these are not the Giants that looked absolutely dead last week. Also, historically this matchup goes against Home-Field, and the Philly fans will be all out celebrating their Game 3 win and drinking it up for Game 4 to care that the Eagles will fail to show up in full strength.
Giants 26 Eagles 17 (NYG)
Oakland @ San Diego (-16.5)
This is an insanely high line for a team with no heart. Seriously, San Diego is heartless. LT is a shell of his old self. Its embarrasing to watch LT not be able to punch one of his 12 goal line carries in when he had a season just 3 years ago when he had 31 tds. The Raiders could have easily beaten them in Week one, and when they look preposterously bad, the usually follow it up with a performance. They can keep this game within two touchdowns. They are not winning, no matter how lifeless San Diego is, becuase Oakland is full of life, of fucking sad awful life.
Raiders 14 Chargers 24 (OAK)
Jacksonville @ Tennessee (-3)
Yup, that's right. 0-6 Tennessee is favored. The Jags beat them by 20, and the Titans just lost by 59. Is Vegas drunk? Am I drunk and reading this line wrong? (more likely than the first scenario). This is absolutely ridiculous. Now, Vince Young is starting. I have no idea how this effects this. He has the ability to make plays against the Jags, but he's also JaMarcus Russell 2.0 (actually he came first, so J-Russ is VY2.0). Jeff Fisher is a good enough coach to make his team win this game. He has to do something after that pitiful showing two weeks ago. Also, the Jags have to stop fooling people that they are a decent team. They are not. If I were the Jags, I would stop this charade now, so they can Jack Del Rio fired, which is what they all want.
Jaguars 14 Titans 20 (TEN)
Carolina @ Arizona (-10)
This line is right on. Carolina is not that good. I have figured that out, albeit 15 weeks after everyone figured that out. It baffles me that Jake is still starting for that team. I realize that their other options are AJ Feeley and Matt Moore (seriously, Matt fucking Moore). Now, if AJ Feeley goes in, we may get some Heather Mills shots in there, but really that's all there is to look for. Arizona is good (which will make the Colts 31-10 beatdown of the Cards in 'Zona more impressive). They are the best team in that division, and outside of the Saints, are my favorite NFC team. The Cards will get this thing rolling, and if they are a team that wants to capitilize on their recent success and potentially match their NFC title (that's right. If you have forgotten, and i don't blame you if you have, they did go to the Super Bowl last year), they take care of business.
Panthers 14 Cardinals 31 (ARZ)
Minnesota @ Green Bay (-3)
Here it is. I hope to God they boo the fuck out of Favre. I hope to God Kampman drives that primadonna to the ground. I hope to God Aaron Rodgers throws a touchdown and gives Favre the finger right after. I know that it was the Packers that essentially let him go, but Favre is such a vindictive bitch. Seriously, just fucking retire already. When you start chucking up more pick-sixes and fail to even attempt to tackle the guy that just picked up your horrendous fumble, people will see the fraud you are. If Green Bay has any pride, they shove this game in Favre's face. I think Mike McCarthy is a prideful fellow.
Vikings 17 Packers 30 (GB)
Atlanta @ New Orleans (-10)
The Saints are really, really good. They are the next decades version of the Greatest Show on Turf. They have the QB, they have the weapons, they have the opportunistic underrated defense, and they have the bravado of invincibility that comes with it. Plus, they have the coach. Seriously, Sean Payton seems like such a cool dude. That guy is straight baller. Now, I think the Falcons are a solid team and a team that has playoff aspirations (wild card, be it), and I think they will beat them in the return matchup at the Georgia Dome, but this is at the Superdome. The Superdome is a rocking place in a night game (much like the EddyJones dome used to be in the St Lizzle back in the day) and they will roll to 7-0.
Falcons 20 Saints 35 (NO)
Last Week: 6-7
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
7:32 - The first Derek Jeter "godliness" comment starts within 30 seconds of the broadcast, with a "the captain of clutch." Oh, I love Jeter. My list of heroes goes 1.) Jeter, 2.) Sully the Pilot and 3.) God.
7:34 - Ozzie Guillen is here. I'm not sure how this will work, since Ozzie seems like someone who wil slur without thinking, so this will be fun. He's also not quite speaking English.
7:36 - Ozzie Guillen says to "be careful with A-Rod" followed up with Erik Karros (who the fuck??) saying "be careful of Mark Teixeira becuase he has not been hot yet." So we have one guy giving us an comment so obvious that John Madden is blushing, and then a guy giving us a pointless comment he immediately contradicts..... THIS IS FOX!!!!
7:38 - Picks: Mark Grace says Yankees in 6. Karros agrees with him after first rubbing his dick. Finally some balls, of course shown by Ozzie "big testes" Guillen, who picks the Phillies in 6. Ozzie may have an IQ of 37, but he is a baseball savant, so bad news Yankee fans.
7:42 - The obligatory Michael J. Fox parkinsons ad. This is an awful thing to say, but if I were Michael J. Fox I would fucking move all over the place in these ads, becuase he is not moving enough to get me to think Parkinsons is that bad.
7:43 - The Empire theme from Star Wars accompanies the Phillies. God, can the Yankee fans even muster up enough passion to boo the Phillies. Also, why is Ben Francisco playing? In related news, who is Ben Francisco?
7:45 - The Yankees are introduced with the 10th most relevan Star Wars music. This is the music that is usually played in the lulls in the middle of the movie, when nothing goes on. Who is picking this music? Hedeki Matsui? Thankfully, they start playing the actual hero theme from Star Wars. Of course, this music is drowning out the already inaudible cheers for the Yankees.
7:48 - Kenny Thomas is our anthem singer. Really? Kenny Thomas? These are the Yankees, their grass is Gold Shavings painted green. They could not get a real singer. They get an "English Soul Singer." I would have preferred Kenny Rogers. I would prefered the NBA Kenny Thomas singing.
7:52 - Just to get the image of that homeless man singing the anthem, I watched Jordin Sparks's Super Bowl XLII anthem. Now that was an anthem. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGQfHIfSWK0&feature=PlayList&p=2ECA994C26A4568B&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=3
7:53 - Michelle Obama, Jill Biden (why do I find it funny that her name is "Jill Biden"), Army Captian Tony (a real hero), and Yogi Berra are throwing out the first pitch. His pitch is 20x better than most people's. Who thought of the first and second ladies? Where did that come from? I'll say this, George Bush was a fool, but he had the decency to not send out his better (much, much better) half out there. He came out and threw a perfect strike. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=631knZM9Uiw That was Bush's best moment.
7:59 - Best anthem ever: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1QmeEdFOSc&feature=PlayList&p=9A5926CA07D194A1&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=9 Super Bowl XXV.
8:00 - The opening pitch of the World Series is brought to you by Budweiser. No, I'm not shitting you. Rollins' bunts out on the first pitch. What a pussy play!! Bad start for the Phils.
8:02 - McCarver calls Sabathia "a totally different pitcher than he was a year ago." If by "different" he means "worse and fatter" then yes, he is. Shane Victorino pops out. And now we get the "Home Depot" Tools to victory.
8:06 - We get the first "catcher's crotch" inset as Sabathia follows that up with a walk of Utley, which will bring Howard to the plate. Howard is having an A-Rod like postseason, but no one gives a crap, because unlike A-Rod, Howard has actaully performed in previosu postseason. Howard doubles, and Utley is at 3rd. It took all of 2/3 of an inning for Yankee fans to be more scared of the Phillies than the 97 win Angels.
8:09 - Jayson Werth is apparently not known, yet he was an all-star. So far, Joe Buck is actually making more stupid comments than McCarver, this could be history in the making. Bases are now loaded, and Sabathia is astonished that people actually might decide to take pitches, unlike the Angels. By the way, thanks for that Ana - fucking - heim.
8:12 - Count now 3-1. McCarver, who predicted very confidently that Sabathia will throw a fastball, is proven wrong. Ibanez grounds out with the bases loaded. He seems to be another poon. Missed opportunity, but Sabathia seems off his game; maybe he just needs to eat a hot dog, like Sanchez.
8:14 - Free Black Taco from T-Bell from 6 to midnight on Halloween. Really, if you actually take advantage of this, you are either a cheap bastard, or need to go out and get a life, and stop frequenting fastfood establishments on Halloween.
8:16 - Cliff Lee has been dominant, absolutely Beckett-esque this postseason. If I am an Indians fan, I would give up all hope of ever being good just from this game. Here we have two pitchers who won back-to-back Cy Youngs for Cleveland who are gone for what will be a barrell of bats and balls (maybe some of Matsui's porn in Sabathia's case).
8:18 - Lee avoids God's lightning bolt and strikes out Jeter in three pitches. He looks like the opposite of Sabathia, in that he is pitching well and also in that he is not black and weighs the equivalent of 3 hippos. Damon bunts out. What is with all this bunting? These are the Yankees, Hank Steinbrenner is probably having uncontrollable fits of anger when one of his mercenaries bunts.
8:21 - Teixeira strikes out. I think the Yankees picked the wrong Indian. Lee is better, and only about 100 million cheaper.
8:23 - I'm just gonna go out on a limb and say "The Fourth Kind" will bomb. I don't even this one will count as going out on a limb, but that Wanda Sykes show will also bomb, alot. Sabathia continues to not find the strike zone. I think CC ate it.
8:26 - Buck says that "Sabathia does not worry about much." Clearly not his weight. Also, clearly not the sad bottom of this Phillies line-up. He easily gets out of the inning, and A-Rod is about to get his first World Series at-bat.
8:29 - In the Mac ad where they replay Jon Hodgeman saying that the current operating system will not have the problems the previous one did, why does Justing Long not appear to get younger, when Hodgeman does? Is Long a robot, is he impervious to aging?
8:33 - Just as Buck finishes his homage to A-Rod being a changed man in the postseason, Lee throws acid on that theory, as he strikes out A-Rod swinging. Posada gets a hit, and Lee finally looks human.
8:35 - Porn-Dog (Matsui) is up. I'm pretty sure all the Yankees will want him resigned so they get to continued use of the stash. Matsui strikes out (becoming a theme) and is now delighted as he can get some quiet time with Lil' Matsui down in the clubhouse. Cano flies out. Yankee fans evidently have shitty eyesight, as they get totally apeshit over a routine fly ball.
8:38 - DJ Hero is a game???? What is next, Orchestra Conductor Hero. What does a DJ do? Spin shit and what else?? We are going to kill society off with these games.
8:40 - I can watch the "Shankapotamus" E*Trade ad a million times, and it will be as funny on the a-millionth-and-first time. Jay-Z and Alicia Keys are singing tomorrow at Yankee Stadium. They were supposed to go today, but the rain cancelled that, so I guess that explains Homeless Guy #3 from Central Park singing the anthem.
8:42 - McCarver tells us that Sabathia and Rollins "grew up 35 miles apart." That's not that close. I guarantee you that I know absolutely no one that grew up 35 miles away from me. No one.
8:44 - Here is some actual baseball analysis. The Phillies are making Sabathia work, and are getting good swings on his balls. This could get interesting.
8:45 - McCarver says that this is "the Amtrak Series." Is he serious?? Amtrak goes everywhere. If the Yankees played the Dodgers, you could get to LA by Amtrak.
8:48 - There is an ad board saying that "24 returns January." Honestly, I think even Keifer Sutherland is bored at this point. There's only so many President's that can die, and other people for him to kill. Utley is fouling tons of pitches off, which is great becuase it is making CC throw alot.
8:50 - UTLEY HOMERS 1-0 PHILLIES
8:51 - Yankee Stadium, which has the sound of a Funeral Home at the best of times, is absolutely stunned. Yes, Yankee fans, other teams can hit the ball too.
8:53 - A sony ad featuring Peyton Manning, Justin Timberlake and Erin Andrews? Now that is an interesting group of characters. In other news, Blackberry is releasing a Blackberry Storm 2 already. Come on, there are millions that have not been suckered into buying the Blackberry Storm 1 (or 1 version 2.0) yet.
8:57 - Mastercard is donating 1,000 dollars to standup2cancer for every home run. Mastercard is probably worth billions. Isn't cancer enough of a cause to get at least 10 or 20 thousand? Swisher and Cabrera surprisingly get out, andby surprisingly I mean "so unsurprising, it hurts."
8:59 - St. Derek doubles. Which allows Johnny Damon do bat with a runer on, which is as good an idea that it rivals only "signing an obese guy to a 8 year deal" in the bad Yankee Ideas hall-of-fame.
9:02 - Honestly, for these Coors Light coach interview ads, I think using anybody would be better than Romeo Crennel. Why not use Ozzie Guillen? "Coach, coach, my can is blue, what do you think that means?" Guillen: "that means it is a faggot." That would be a wonderful ad.
9:04 - DirectTV "No one has all your favorite channels in HD". In fact, Comcast has all my favorite channels in HD. Unless I am the odd soul whose favorite channel is cartoon network, I think I will take my chances with Comcast and its 42 HD channels.
9:05 - The celebrities in the crowd: Alec Baldwin, Rudy Guliani (who is wearing the same WS hat since 2001), Kate Hudson, Kurt Russell and Jeff Gordon. I really don't know what to say.
9:09 - Sabathia has sprung to life after the home run. Sadly, it took him until he had thrown 60 pitches in 2 and 2/3 innings for him to realize that yes, in fact this is the World Series and he might bother showing up.
9:10 - Taking a break to cook up some Asian Noodles. Mmmmmm..... Raman!!!
9:17 - Lee strikes out Teixeira and Rodriguez back to back again. So, Teixeira and A-Rod, a combined 455 million dollars of contract, have come up to the plate four times, and struck out four times. I guess 455 million doesn't get what it used to.
9:19 - Cliff Lee strikes out the side, and has 7 k's through 4 innings. Is this Randy Johnson circa 2001 using Polyjuice Potion (Yeah, I love me some polyjuice potion references)?
9:21 - TD Bank may in fact be the most convenient bank, but I have yet to see a singular branch of the TD Bank. I guess that is their plan. No one can test their convenience theory, becuase they don't actually exist. Smart-asses, those TD Bank fellas.
9:24 - It looks like it is pouring in the Bronx. Weird, since it is not raining a bit here in lower Manhattan. And, we are not even 35 miles away from each other.
9:25 - Cliff Lee apparently thinks of CC as his best friend in baseball. I think he is only saying that, becuase if not CC would eat him. I see through Cliff Lee's games.
9:28 - I like the premise of "The Box" where Cameron Diaz can push a button and get a million dollars, but someone dies. I give it three months until this is a game show on NBC called "Pushing the Limits." (I know, that title is brilliant).
9:29 - Dunkin Donuts tells us to hurry up and get their fall flavors becuase they won't be here forever. I may be wrong, but I really don't think I am, but I may be but I'm pretty sure they will be here forever, as long as Fall continues to be a season.
9:31 - Buck: "The pace of Cliff Lee drips with confidence." Uh, Joe, I don't think adjectives can drip with things. Two really questionable ball calls (they were both strikes if CC was pitching) lead to a single by the Porn-Dog.
9:36 - The umpires have a chance to redeem themselves here, as it should be a double play for the Phillies as Rollins caught a ball in the air, and Porn-Dog was wandering randomly. The umps got the call right, and these umps should be immediately enshrined in the hall of fame for making that call correctly.
9:38 - Lee is absolutely cruising against this lineup whose total salaries could feed the country of Sierra Leone for the next four decades, and the Steinbrenners are considering trading for Lee before Game 5.
9:42 - Sabathia has reverted to his wild ways here in the 6th, starting with three straight balls to Victorino. Victorino pops out again, and this is getting to be a rather boring well-pitched game.
9:44 - Utley rips one just foul. McCarver just said how great a two-strike hitter he is, and McCarver is finally sounding like he is smart. He sounds like a fucking Einstein now.
9:45 - UTLEY HOMERS AGAIN 2-0 PHILLIES
9:46 - I'm gonna say it, and I know people will crucify for such an outlandish thing to say, but I think the Phillies are not scared of the big-bad Yankees and the "mystique and aura" of Yankee stadium. In fact, I think the Yankees forgot to bring mystique and aura across the street to the new digs.
9:51 - Werth hits a seeing-eye single, and Sabathia is about to throw his 100th pitch. I'm gonna say that this was one of the most dissapointing performances that yielded just 2 runs by a pitcher ever.
9:54 - Can Geico just bring back the fucking cave men please?? Also, is "The Men Who Stare at Goats" just about men who stare at goats, because if so, that is absolutely brilliant. Either way, best movie title since "Snakes on a Plane."
9:57 - Cabrera pops out, and we have had only one hard hit ball by a Yankee tonight, and that was Jeter's double. I make fun of Jeter, but he seems to be the only one who got the memo that, despite them being the Yankees, they actually have to play to win the World Series.
10:00 - Damon is 2-24 against Cliff Lee. Jerry Hairston is 1-6 with a home run against Lee. I think I am much, much smarter than Joe Girardi. But then again, I think the mold growing in our trash can is.
10:03 - Damon pops out (shock), and Lee literally yawns while grabbing the ball. I think he is locked in. Now comes the 455 million combo. Tex grounds out. This is immense fun watching the Yankees hitters suddenly turning into a more expensive version of the Mets.
10:06 - If Mike Bloomberg really did stuff for the middle class, like his ad says over and over, than I think he should have not allowed taxpayers to pay 900 million dollars for a stadium that looks exactly like the old Yankee Stadium. Honestly, what a fucking waste of money. Instead of building the new stadium, they should have paid for AC in Rubin Hall.
10:09 - Sabathia, on his 110th pitch, walks Ben Francisco. Francisco has a stunned look on his face, probably because this is the first time he has ever been walked. Pedro Feliz hits a double play. It's a bit ironic that Pedro Feliz is slow, I won't way why.
10:12 - And now comes God Bless America, better known as the Yankees crook way of freezing out pitchers in the name of fake Patriotism. If the Yankees were Patriotic, they would have not picked a British guy to sing the anthem. Also, fueling the fire of the my conspiracy theory is that this is by far the longest version of God Bless America ever. I think she made up that opening verse.
10:15 - A brilliant WalMart moment with a contrived family making up an even more contrived story. This ad is then followed by a Beatles song. Talk about one end of the spectrum to the other.
10:17 - A-Roid comes up. A-Roid grounds out. A-Roid is 0-3. Looks like he forgot that the World Series is part of the postseason as well. Phil Hughes is warming up, and gets the treat of facing the top of the order. That should be fun.
10:20 - McCarver tells a joke and makes himself and no one else laugh. I feel bad for him, but in a strange way connected to him, since I too try to tell jokes and make myself and no one else laugh. Tim, I feel for you. Posada grounds out.
10:22 - Porn-Dog grounds out (related note: CC Sabathia goes into the clubhouse to take a sneak into Matsui's best vids (Boner-Jams '03 - a bunch of clips Hedeki was into in the Summer of '03)). TheYankees have now been shut out for 16 straight World Series, dating back to Beckett's shutout in Game 6 in 2003.
10:26 - Rollins hits a bomb just foul. This is a key inning. They need a insurance run (or like five insurance runs) becuase we all know Lidge cannot be trusted. Phil Hughes has a classic "Holy Fuck, this is the world series" face. Hughes walks J-Roll with two pitches that were closer to Row 3 than they were to home plate.
10:29 - Hughes is annoyingly throwing over to first base on Rollins. There is a better chance of Yankee Stadium spontaneously taking off and flying to the moon then Hughes picking Rollins off. Hughes goes to 3-0. He is wasting all his strikes on his pick off throws. Rollins steals second. Great job trying to hold him to first Phil Hughes.
10:33 - Hughes walks Shane Victorino. Girardi tries to go cute going lefty-lefty with Damaso Marte. There are two things wrong with this: 1.) Utley has two home runs against the best lefty the Yankees have in CC and 2.) Damaso Marte sucks balls. Yankee Stadium appropriately boo.
10:36 - Is Damaso Marte holding Phil Coke hostage, or does he have pictures of Girardi fucking a melon, becuase if not, there is no reason for him to be pitching.
10:39 - Damaso Marte is somehow getting out of this jam. Good job, Damaso, you won't be killed tonight be a deranged Yankee fan.
10:43 - David Robertson in. Robertson was the center of scrutiny when Girardi took him out to let Aceves pitch in Game 3 of the ALCS. When fans are mad that you are taking David Robertson out, I think you may need to rethink the strength of your bullpen. Robertson promptly walks Werth in 4 pitches. I think Damaso Marte could have easily done the same.
10:47 - IBANEZ SINGLES 4-0 PHILLIES
10:48 - The New York media is going to hammer Girardi for not bringing in a lefty for Robertson when Ibanez came in. If Girardi is lucky, his lifeless team will continue to get shut out for two more innings just so this inning does not matter in the end.
10:52 - Lee comes out for the 8th, and I really hope he pitches a complete game. Great defensive play by Lee. Another reason why the Yankees should have picked Lee instead of Sabathia. No way Sabathia makes that play, unless the ball gets stuck on his gelatinous fat.
10:56 - Cliff Lee is now through 8. He is absolutely shutting down the Yankees and shutting up this crowd. I really hope he goes out there for the complete game.
10:59 - Here's an interesting tidbit, the Michelin Man is just CC Sabathia painted white and wearing a mask. Also, can you believe this, someone is trying to assassinate someone on 24. There is a shocker for you. I guess my opening episode idea of "Jack Bauer kills eight chinamen by himself" was overlooked.
11:00 - Brian Bruney is, which is always cause to celebrate with a brew. Ruiz hits a double, and it is sad when Carlos Ruiz has hit a ball harder than any Yankee.
11:05 - Jimmy Rollins hits a ball that just dies on the grass in front of A-Roid, which is ironic because Alex Rodrigeuz's postseason of glory just died as well.
11:07 - VICTORINO SINGLES 5-0 PHILLIES
11:07 - They just made the end of this game mighty anticlimatic and also mighty entertaining for a Yankee hater. Side note, the winner of game 1 has won the World Series every year since 2002.
11:13 -Phil Coke now goes 3-1 on Utley. This is not looking good for the Yanees. You know what else does not look good? The thousands of empty seats in Yankee Stadium.
11:16 - HOWARD DOUBLES 6-0 PHILLIES
11:16 - Ryan Howard is fucking the SI Cover Jinx in the ass right now. This is fun.
11:19 - Cliff Lee is out there to finish what he started, against the top of the order no less. For a team whose combined payroll rivals only Rush Limbaugh's salary, this is embarrasing.
11:21 - Joe Buck is now so bored he is rambling about Cliff Lee's kids Jackson and Macy. Good Lord, Buck. Can't you just make up some Pujols story to orgasm about instead. Jeter continues to be the only Yankee to show up as he singles.
11:22 - Johnny Damon is now 4-26 lifetime against Cliff Lee. I really hope they let Lee finish this. He is not blowing a 6 run lead. Suddenly, Girardi's ass managing is a problem now, as this would be a much more nerve racking ninth inning.
11:24 - JETER SCORES ON ROLLINS' ERROR 6-1 PHILLIES
11:24 - The Yankees went 17 and 1/3 innings without scoring a run, so the Yankees finally get off the schnied. Rollins idiotic attempt at a double play takes away the shutout. A-Rod now up. I hope this does not absolve Teixeira's shitty night. A-Roid quickly to 0-2 against Lee.
11:26 - This is why I would not make a good proffesional athlete, other than my lack of ability. I would be furious if my teammate's bonehead error just cost me a shutout. I would seriously kill him in my mind.
11:26 - A-Roid strikes out again. I am sooooooo happy the old A-Roid is back. I've missed you buddy.
11:28 - Jorge Posada strikes out. Lee goes the distance giving up 6 hits and striking out 10, and coming within one horrible throw by Rollins from getting a complete game shutout. The boy is special. Yankee Stadium is eerily silent, and I am pumped up, I just took a victory lap around my dorm.
That was an interesting game 1. Lee was brilliant, Sabathia was fat, Girardi did his usual questionable managing job, Damaso Marte actually performed well, Chase Utley was nearly killed by Hal Steinbrenner's hitman, and Pedro is pitching in Yankee stadium tomorrow.
I would do this again, but instead I will visit a local establishment and cheer against the Yankees in the hear of NYC. Wish me luck.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Remember, Tier 1 is for first-ballot guys, Tier 2 is for guys that should make it, and Tier 3 is for the young guys who are on the right path.
There are no tier one players, since I think to qualify for first-ballot lock, you have to hit every field goal ever and kick a touchback on every kickoff.
Adam Vinatieri - He should absolutely be in. He is probably the single most important player of this decade, and to the careers of Bill Belichick and Tom Brady (other than Walt Coleman, the little fucker who overturned the fumble in the "tuck game"). If he misses that kick to send the game against the Raiders to overtime, there is no dynasty. Instead of Brady and Belichick starting out at 10-0 in the playoffs, they would have lost thier first playoff game at home. Had he missed the kick at the gun against the Rams, it goes to overtime, and maybe the Rams win and get thier dynasty. He has the all-time record for field goals in the playoffs, including going 5-5 in a game three times. Even his work with the Colts has been admirable. If there ever is a kicker hall-worthy it is him. Clutch kickers are real. He is the only true one. He never misses a clutch kick, ever. After seeing Mike Vanderjagt shank kicks that resemble my golf game, I know just how amazing having Vinatieri is.
Ryan Clady - Sure, he is only in his second year, but he deserves this mention. He started from day one at LT, and allowed half a sack for a team that threw it 590 times. That is production, and protection, that only a select few have ever given. Walter Jones called him "the best young tackle I have ever seen since Ogden" and he's absolutely right. Great LT don't just lose it suddenly, so unless he gets seriously hurt, he is nearly assured to keep playing at the high level he is. Another plus is that he is a terrific run blocker, as the Broncos were 2nd in the league in yards running behind LT last year.
Jeff Saturday - He is the second most indispensible player on the Colts other than Manning. When he starts, which has been 138 out of the last 144 games, Manning has a 96.1 rating. In the games that he has not been there, Manning has a 82.2 rating. There is a reason for that. Considering the no-huddle nature of the Colts offense, and Manning's tendency to change play calls, there is no lineman asked to do more than Saturday is. There is a reason why Manning has often stated that he would pay Jeff himself just to keep him. He is the only constant in the best offense of the last decade on the line.
Alan Faneca - The biggest difference between people who like football and people who played football in their understanding of the game is the way they know how lineman play. I really have no subjective evidence to say that Faneca is a good player, but from what I have heard, he is excellent. The guy is a horse, missing only one game this decade, and is an 8 time pro bowler. He was the key cog in the Steelers line that made the Steelers the second best rushing attack during his tenure, and the Steelers have never been able to run the ball nearly as well ever since he left. He was the most talked about O-Lineman in years when he switched to the Jets, and that has to be for a reason.
Kevin Mawae - Like in Faneca's case, I have no real evidence to back this up, but the guy made pro-bowl and all-pro team after pro-bowl and all-pro team for a reason. He was the guy that centered the line that made Curtis Martin into a great player. He was the heart and soul of the line that made the Titans a playoff team each of the last two years. Plus, he's a center, so having to shove a ball near your genitals for the last 15 years, and missing only 13 games. That is dedication to your craft. He's been the preeminent center the last two decades, and easily deserves the hall nod, just not as much as the next guys.
Steve Hutchinson - Here are Shaun Alexanders numbers in the four years where Hutchinson played LG for the Hawks: 1318 yds (14tds), 1435 yds (14tds), 1696 yds (16tds), 1880 yds (27tds). Here are his numbers after Hutchinson left: 896 yds (7tds), 716 yds (4tds). Here are the numbers for the new guy that Hutchinson primarily blocks for: 1340 yds (12tds), 1760 yds (10tds). That guy is Adrian Peterson. There is a reason why in the last six years, the back that Hutchinson opened up Red Sea like holes for has averaged 1571 yds and 15.5 tds. The second he left Seattle, they have never been close to the same on offense. The second he came to Minnesota he transformed them into one of the top running teams in the league. Sure, he played next to Walter Jones, but he's a pass blocker. Hutchinson was the guy who made that running game go, and made Matt Hasselbeck, Shaun Alexander and even Mike Holmgren millions.
Orlando Pace - He was the heart and soul of the line that made the Greatest Show on Turf hum along for years. He was the guy who protected Kurt Warner, and in that offense, which usually left him all-alone one on one with the other teams best pass-rusher, he kept Warner upright alot. He was the best LT with the next guy for this decade, and road-grated for Faulk and now Steven Jackson. Not much else to say here, since I have no idea if he is actually as good as I think he is. He does give out five tickets for every Rams game to the less fortunate, so the guy is at least a good human being.
Walter Jones - Big Walter has been to nine pro-bowls, has missed just 12 games since he entered the league, and has been the stronghold of that same Seahawks offense that made Hasselbeck and Alexander into stars. He has given up 8 sacks in the last 6 years, total. That is ridiculous. He has been the only LT playing currently to be listed among the other more marketable positions as being the best player in the league (along with Jonathan Ogden, who retired this year). In 2006, Sporting News named him the best player in the NFL. In Peter Kings "King 500" before the 2007 season, he was listed as the eighth best player in the NFL. John Madden, who rarely says anything about linemen in broadcasts, other than to point out how large their appetites are, called him the best LT ever. That's all I need to know.
Jason Witten - Cowboy's usually get in even if they are undeserving, so this one should not be that hard if he continues to play like he is now for the forseeable future. He is only 27, and he is a 5 time pro bowler, and is the only pass-catcher who has any rapport or good timing with Romo. He is only 50 catches away from 500, and could threaten 800 in his career, which would put him in the top-5 all time for TEs. Becuase people generally overrate Cowboys, actually legitimate great players like him go unnoticed. Also, he is one of the few great pass-catching TEs to be also a very good, if not great blocker.
Antonio Gates - His career numbers are strikingly similar to those of Mr. Witten above, and that is a good thing. He is also a 5 time pro bowler. The only problem is that he has been more injury prone, but usually that only comes into effect in the playoffs. He is closing in on 500 receptions, and although he is older, so he won't approach 800, 700 may be attainable. He is the epitome of the basketball-player turned TE, and he has been dominant at times, with multiple QBs, and for years was the only legitimate target in San Diego apart from Tomlinson.
Tony Gonzalez - You are currently watching the end of the career of the Greatest Tight End of all Time. Had he played Wideout, his numbers are hall-worthy. He will become the first Tight End to get 1000 catches. a number which only 5 receivers have attained. He will retire in the Top-15 in catches, yards and TDs, which is insane for a TE. After all of this, he is still only 33, so he probably has three more productive years like this after this one. This is alot like watching Jerry Rice at the end of his career. It is rare that we can see someone who is the greatest at what he does ever. We could see that with Jerry, and the only other examples play other sports, like Jordan and Gretzky. Now, he is not in those all-time classes, but at every position in football there is debate as to the greatest to ever play it. There are two that have no debate, which is Rice at Wideout and Gonzalez at TE.
Andre Johnson - He is on pace for another monster year, and at this point the only thing that can stop his is injuries. He already has 500 catches, and this is with missing 10 games in his career. He just catches the ball. He twice has caught 100 balls, and twice led the league in yards. He is the perfect combination of size and speed, and he is not a dive, like most WRs these days. Just for that, and also for his freakish ability to catch and run with the football, he is well on his way to Canton.
Larry Fitzgerald - He just turned 26. The only player who put up even comparable numbers at that age is Jerry Rice. He will most likely get his 500th catch this year. He has gotten 100 catches twice times in the last 4 years and has eclipsed 1400 yards 3 times. No one will pile up TDs like Rice, and later Moss, but he is the only man that can conceivably top Rice's catches and yardage marks. That is saying alot, but it is all true. As shown in last years playoffs, he is a great prime-time player. He is also one of the classiest athletes in the NFL and will just continue to grow as a great WR. Recent receivers, like Harrison, Moss and Owens have shown that they age well, and if that is true, look out. Rice will probably never be topped, but he can come close.
Isaac Bruce - He is one out of 5 players to catch 1000 balls. The other five are (or in Marvin's case will be) hall of famers. He is a compiler though, as he has 16 years, but his overall numbers are good enough to get him there, it just may take awhile. He has had some amazing seasons, like in 1995-1996 where he caught 200 passes for 3,000 yards and 20tds. He was one of the centerpieces of the greatest show on turf, and continued to be stellar throughout his 30's. It might take him longer than some of the other guys on this list, but it is hard to say that he is not ultimately deserving.
Chad Ochocinco - He deserves it. He may be a serious joke, and a mini-diva, but it is hard to say there has been anyone better since 2003. This is the numbers he tossed up from 2003-2007 (5 seasons): 462 catches, 6870 yards and 43 tds. Those numbers rank 2, 1 and 4 over that time period. It was him that turned Cincinnatti from a joke to a real franchise. He's only 32, so he probably has 4-5 more years to make music with Carson and by then he should be nearing 1000 catches. His antics may have rubbed people the wrong way, but he always went out and competed, had a ton of fun playing football, and was the leader of the resurgence of the Bengals (he was putting up numbers, dancing weirdly and guaranteeing wins before Carson started). I just hope he changes his name by then.
Terrell Owens - I really considered putting him in the next class, but seeing that it is really hard for receivers to get in, I could not do it. Part of the hall's qualifications is being a stand-up performer and class guy. Terrell has burned bridges in 3 cities, hard public spats with three different QBs, and even insinuated one of his QBs was gay (Jeff Garcia , by the way, got married to a Playboy playmate, and has probably resisted many an urge to go to Owens's driveway and fuck her right there, and make TO watch). He is a coach, QB and team killer. However, you cannot underestimate his talent. His numbers are scary, and that is what will eventually get him in, even though he probably will have to wait a while.
Torry Holt - He was as consistent and as brilliant as they come for years and years. His numbers are right there with the TOs and Mosses, except for TD catches. Here's why I would not care to much about that, Moss and TO have had better QBs. When Holt was part of the Show, he caught TDs, but since then he has had Marc Bulger, Jeff Fitzpatrick, David Garrard, Scott Covington and Gus Frerotte throw him balls. Put him in for this stretch from 2000-2007: 753 catches, 11094 yards and 65 tds. He was a catching machine for years and years, and still has something left.
Randy Moss - Yup, he's a first ballot Hall of Famer. In fact, there is a case to be made that he was as dominant as Rice, just lacked the longevity and the drive. He was the centerpiece of both of the top-2 scoring offenses of all time. He took Tom Brady and made him finally reach the stat-levels of Peyton Manning. He made Randall Cunningham, Jeff Goerge and Daunte Culpepper viable QB options. He had a run of six years to start his career where he had 525 catches, 8375 yards (15.9 a catch) and 77 tds. He was the greatest downfield target ever, and there was nothing more exciting than when some QB launched one deep to him. Even his first year in Oakland, one that people like to forget, was a very good year, especially when you consider he was in Oakland: 60 catches 1005 yards and 8 tds. He made everyone around him better, especially that Patriots team. Without him, the Pats don't approach the numbers they did. He is only 32, but he has lost a step, and is still one of the 10 best receivers in the league. Sure, he has had his fair share of off-field incidents, but he was a good teammate. Lawrence Taylor is in the hall, and he was practically butt-fucking hookers and snorting cocaine in the huddle. This guy should be in first ballot.
Marvin Harrison - Since he technically has not yet retired, he qualifies. And thank god. I've put up alot of "runs" in the receiver column, and here is one more. And it shatters every other one posted. From 1999 to 2002 (before Manning even won 1 MVP), he put up (and remember this is just 4 years) 469 catches, 6322 yards and 52 tds. He had 8 consecutive years of at least 10 tds. He has helped Manning as much as Manning helped him. As Manning got better and better, and guys like Clark and Wayne got better and better, Manning threw to him less and less, but he never complained, never sulked. All he did, and all he ever has done, is run his route, get open and catch the ball. He has some of the more underrated circus catches too. He was a catching machine, a true great person and a surefire first ballot Hall of Famer.
Adrian Peterson - My god, is he a shoo-in unless he gets hurt. Every running back seemingly falls of an edge when they hit 30, so he will eventually start to decline, but he has six full season after this one before he reaches 30. He is putting up numbers at a record pace. So far, he has averaged 102.5 yards per game in his career. He is fresh off a running title, and is the consensus favorite to win the next five. He is fast, strong, agile, quick and many other similar adjectives that explain his being a manbeast. Sure, he has a great O-Line playing in front of him, but the last two years he faced a rare 13 men in the box defense when Tarvaris Jackson was his QB, and prospered at levels rarely seen from young runners. This will be special.
Edgerrin James - Guess who has more rushing yards in his career: Edge or LT? Its Edge, and its not close. Now Edge has played for two more years, but he also missed much of two years with serious injuries. Edgerrin is in the top-10 in rushing yards, and everyone else around him will or already are hall of famers. He was part of the new triplets, with Harrison and Peyton, and was arguably as important as either guy. He is 12th in yards from scrimmage, which shows how valuable he was a reciever. He may have never gotten the publicity of an Alexander, or Tomlinson or even Priest Holmes but he deserves all of it. I just wish the Colts kept him for 2006 so he could get his ring he so truly deserved.
LaDainian Tomlinson - He used to be scary. He used to be the best single skill position player in the NFL. He used to be a touchdown machine, a guy who has scored 10+ TDs every year of his career. He won rushing titles, touchdown titles, and even an MVP. He even caught 100 balls one year, and was, after Faulk the best all-purpose back we have season. He was a first-ballot hall of famer. In fact, he still is one. He just is not half as good as he thinks he is anymore. I would feel the same way if I were him. He dominated this game on the ground, and is the NFL leader in yards, tds, yards from scrimmage and even non-QB passing touchdowns since entering the league in 2001. He was a stand-up guy throughout, garnering one of the most beloved followings from the mainstream media. He was the perfect running back, and should easily get first-ballot distinction.
Phil Rivers - He got a late start, sitting on the bench each of his first two years, but he has lost no time in catching up to his class of 2004 brethren statisctically. He has an insane 88-39 TD/INT ratio and a career 93.3 passer rating, which is barely worse than that of one Thomas Brady. He has a career 37-17 record, and throughout his receivers were Malcolm Floyd, Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers and other no-names. He is an absolutely fantastic QB, but he is stuck on a team that is a bit lost. They gave away a good young RB for an aging old one, and have not surrounded him with the pieces to win a super bowl, despite this annual notion of them being the "most talented team in the league." He has shown, though, that he is a gamer in the postseason, nearly knocking off the 17-0 Pats with one good leg, and winning playoff games each of the last two years (he is, shockingly, the only QB in the NFL to do that). He should continue to pile up stats, and hopefully the national recognition will follow in earnest.
Carson Palmer - This takes the projection that those elbow problems are behind him. If they are, he is in pretty good position to make a run at it. He is only 29, even though it seems he's been in the NFL for years and years. With him healthy, Chad motivated and Andre Caldwell and Chris Henry finally showing the promise that they had, he can pile up numbers the next four or five years. Also, with a good defense, he has the opportunity to win playoff games and maybe even a Super Bowl. This might be outlandish, but I think he has a better chance to win a super bowl than Phil Rivers. It might be a strecth, but I'm behind him.
Joe Flacco - I'll believe in him. Sure he's young, and everything may all go wrong later, but he's for real. He's better than Matt Ryan (I think I made Peter King cry with that) and it will continue to show. He is throwing for 280 yards a game this year, and here are his receivers: Derrick Mason (ancient), Mark Clayton (sucks), Kelley Washington (was the 5th receiver on the Bengals) and the corpse of Todd Heap. That is really impressive. This guy will be a star for a long, long time, and with the era of defensive dominance slowing, he will emerge as the leader of that team. Also, losing the unibrow makes him so much more believable.
Drew Brees - I assume the Saints greatest show on turf impression will continue another three to four years, becuase if so, he is golden. This guy is fast approaching 200 career TDs, 30,000 yards and is a career 90.9 passer rating and 64.1 cmp%. That all is great, but put him in for what he did for New Orleans, and induct him on the spot if he wins a super bowl with them. Not only is New Orleans a team with a wretched history, he inherited a post-Katrina wasteland, and turned them into the most exciting team in the NFL. He should retroactively get that 2006 MVP award, but he should get this nod anyway.
Kurt Warner - He probably needs to lead this team back to the playoffs this year to put this cast in stone, but even if he leaves the sport tomorrow, he should be in. Here are his rate stat numbers: #2 in yards per game (.1 behind Peyton), #5 in YPA, #4 passer rating, #2 cmp%. He has taken two downtrodden franchises to three super bowls (one combined super bowl before that). He has the three largest passing days in QB history, and barely lost two of them. He has a career 8-3 in the playoffs. He led the fucking Arizona Cardinals to the Super Bowl. These are his numbers in his 7 kinda-healthy years: 4354 yds 41 tds, 3429 yds 21 tds (11gms), 4830 yds 36 tds, 2713 yds 11 tds (10gms), 3417 yds 27 tds (14gms), 4583 yds 30 tds. He is a hall of famer. Above all that, he has the greatest story in NFL history. People laud Brady for being a 6th round pick. Warner was not even picked, he played Arena League, bagged groceries and still made it and won a Super Bowl.
Ben Roethlisberger - He too, could probably retire today and make it, or at least play averagely for the remainder of his career and make it. Through five years, no one has his numbers. Through 2008, he was 51-20 as a starter, with a career 101-69 td/int, 63.3 cmp%, 8.0 ypa, 90.2 passer rating. In the postseason, he is 8-2 as a starter, he has won two super bowls. This is probably going to make Peter King cry as well, but he has a more impressive resumer through 5 years than Brady had. He is also a far better throwing statistical QB than people give him credit for. His physical style of play may evential knock him out, but if he has three more years like the five he has had, he should be in the Hall.
Brett Favre - What is there to say? Nothing, every possible combination of words to describe Brett Favre has already been said millions of times over. I'll just say this, look at the stats from 1994-1998 that Favre put up. I think with all his gay shenenigans recently people have forgotten what a great QB he used to be. He was amazing. I have no comment as to the current farce of a person named Brett Favre today.
Tom Brady - I hate him as well. I respect him to hell too. He is a surefire hall of famer. Colts fans like to make reasons to discredit Tom, but honestly, when you are 14-3 in the playoffs. He is 92-26 in the regular season. Now, he has always had a hall-of-famer as a coach, and a top-5 defense, so those wins are not totally due to him, but there is no way you can take away those accomplishments away from the guy. He is an amazing player. He can make every throw (I'll add one shot at him though: his throwing arm has very interestingly gotten much stronger since he came into the league). He put up the 3rd greatest season for a QB ever (behind Marino's 1984 and Manning's 2004) and deserves all of it. He has raised his game when the playoffs start, and even pre-Moss, his numbers dwarfed Aikman's and resembled Montana's. He is as sure-fire as the guy above him and below.
Peyton Manning - He is not done, as he has probably as good a shot at winning another super bowl this year as anyone else, but if, god forbid, he retired tomorrow, he would be a first ballot. His numbers are scary, and if Favre ever retires he will own every passing record in the leagues history. He already has 350 tds, and 47500 yards, which put him in 3rd and 4th respectively already. That is scary. He is on his way to a 4th MVP award, and has directed an offense that has been the league's best since 1999. He has not really had the weapons people try to make it seem, as, besides Marvin, he made every other receiver into a great player. He made Wayne, Stokley, Collie, Garcon, Clark, Pollard, Addai, James, Rhodes and all of those guys into better players. He called his own plays. Why am I using the past tense? I don't know. He still has many more great accomplishments to go. He is already better than Brady (one day I will write about that argument), and if he wins the Super Bowl this year, there is just no point of having an argument about that. At this point, he's up there with Montana and Marino as the greatest QBs of the Super Bowl era, and if anyone does not vote for him for the Hall, that person should lose their voting license.
32.) St. Louis Rams (0-7)
I continue to feel bad for Steve Spagnuolo, but maybe he's a Cam Cameron "great coordinator, awful heaad coach" type. However, before I make that judgement, I probably should wait until his team has enough talent to beat Alabama.
31.) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-7)
I am still convinced they have the worst Head Coach in the league. (Preview: Head Coach rankings within the next week). I still cannot believe some people actually think an NFL team could work in London. This is a message to the NFL office: "An English Premier League team would not work in America. Why? Becuase it is fucking soccer, and American's hate soccer. Now, English people probably hate American Football even more. Why? Becuase they have their own form of football, one that coincedently is played using your feet." Also, what may not help is in the three years this London game has been played, we sent the 1-15 Dolphins to England, and now this Bucs team.
30.) Kansas City Chiefs (1-6)
I guess I was wrong in saying that this team has a pulse. I would say that this team was foolish for investing in Matt Cassel, but it would be hard to say that since their GM worked for the Patriots. Maybe he should have known that the guy would not be all that great when he's not throwing to the second greatest receiver of all time.
29.) Tennessee Titans (0-6)
That's whay byes are for. They actually gained a spot. The big news in Nashville is that Jeff Fisher wore a Peyton Manning jersey and quipped "I want to feel like a winner" before introducing Tony Dungy at a charity event. Now, that may very well be a dumb thing to do. But what is a dumber thing to do would be to fire him for this. He's one of the few coaches who act like they know what a smile is. My favorite part of this whole thing was this comment from Keyshawn Johnson: "Would Bill Belichick wear this?" No, you idiot, he would not becuase his team is not currently 0-6, so it would not make fucking sense.
28.) Cleveland Browns (1-6)
They continue to be the most boring team in the NFL. When the biggest news of the year is your coach fining a player $1,701 for not paying for a $3 water bottle, you are not having a good season. To think that fat-ass was once called the "Mangenius." I think it is fitting that the most boring team has the most boring name. Come on, Cleveland. A Color, really? I realized its really named after Paul Brown, but you ran the guy out of town, and his name adorns another teams stadium, so I think it is fine to change it to what your name should be anyway: the Cleveland Dawgs.
27.) Washington Redskins (2-5)
Let's do a quick check-list: They beat the 32nd ranked team by 2, and the 31st ranked team by 3. They are the only team to lose to the Lions for the last 18 months. Their coach has really no job to do, and their play-caller was calling out bingo numbers three weeks ago. I guess Dan Snyder's pocketbook does not get what it used to?
26.) Detroit Lions (1-5)
I really hope Matt Stafford comes back, becuase that team is helplessly pointless if not. Honestly, it is only becuase their name is not a color, but a ferocious manly animal, and the fact that their fans have a tendency to get their persons drunk and fight, and the fact that their coach is probably the single reason why the Tennessee Titans are now a joke, that they have not replaced the Browns as the boringest team.
25.) Oakland Raiders (2-5)
Ahhhh, life in the NFL in 2009. You can lose games by 38, 37, 20 and 23 and be the eighth worst team. That is what is great about this team. They have the talent, as seeing as they dominated a good Philly team last week, and were beating San Diego for 59 minutes and 30 seconds in the opener. However, every time the shoot to a motionless shot of Al Davis watching JaMarcus throwing a laserbeam right to the hands of a defender, I wonder what the old Al Davis would think. I'm sure the old Al would have fired the current Al, and then hired a gunman to kill him.
24.) Carolina Panthers (2-4)
I guess it is time to John Kerry on them again. They are not going to sneak back into this thing. They are toast. Jake Delhomme continues a brilliant Akili Smith impersonation and they just lost to the Bills at home by 11. Not even the Raiders would lose to the Bills by 11 at home. Thank god for DeAngelo Williams, because if not for his fantasy value, Carolina would have already turned to College Basketball last week.
23.) Buffalo Bills (3-4)
It is absolutely inexplicable how they have won three games. They won the last two weeks while getting outgained 839-463. What is more inexplicable is that Dick Jauron has been dead during all of this. It is all smoke and mirrors though, as they have benifitted from Mark Sanchez and Jake Delhomme turning into me playing QB the last two weeks.
22.) Seattle Seahawks (2-4)
They will continue to be dangerous to pick and pick against, becuase the Matthew and his bunch of receivers will throw up 3 td days twice a month. It makes no sense that they can beat a team 41-0 and then lose 27-3 at home. On the good side, rain season is approaching so they will now be the most depressing place in the world for 3 months.
21.) Jacksonville Jaguars (3-3)
They may be .500, but that is also crazy. They needed OT to beat the Rams, and beat the 0-6 Titans. Also, if you haven't forgotten, they have laid a Whale-sized egg in Seattle. That was the single worst performance in the year; yes, even worse than the 59-0 game by the Titans. At least there was some excuse (the snow, the lack of anything to play for), whereas the Jags were in playoff contention, and had a real chance to show they are for real.
20.) New York Jets (4-3)
Sorry, but I'm not going to give alot of credit for beating the Raiders in the Raiders monthly "don't-show-up-because-I-am-too-depressed-for-living-in-a-wasteland" game. That is no hard feat, just ask the Texans, Broncos and Giants. In fact, I may have dropped them. This is mainly due becuase Rex Ryan decided to criticize Mark Sanchez for eating a hot dog becuase he was feeling sick. First, why is Sanchez eating a hot dot trying to feel better. This is an Oakland hot dog, it probably made out of sewage, and Al Davis's bile.
19.) Chicago Bears (3-3)
What an awful performance. I think I am the only person who thinks that the Bears will still eventually win the Cutler deal. Soon enough, Mike Nolan will leave for a head-coaching gig, which he will fail at again, and that defense will go down again, and then you're left with Orton. So, it may be until 2012, but Bears fans, you will come out on top. (I don't really believe that, I just want to stop Bears fans from killing Cutler after his next 3 pick game).
18.) San Francisco 49ers (3-3)
Looks like they are who I tought they were. I really hope Alex Smith does well. He deserves it after all the flak he took. They are just not a good team, but Smith will make them interesting. I really think Singletary will be gone in two years. Mainly becuase, there are only so many times where dropping trou will motivate your team. And I speak for Patrick Willis when I say that "Coach, we have reached those alloted amounts of time."
17.) Miami Dolphins (2-4)
They are below a four win team. But I think they are that good. So far, they are 2-1 with the better Chad, their Wildcat is still fooling people, and their two losses on the road were against San Diego and Atlanta, two pretty good teams. However, above all that, the reason I believe in them is that they played the Colts and the Saints closer than anyone. They played point-for-point with two teams a combined 12-0.
16.) San Diego Chargers (4-2)
I'll give them credit for getting the job done. That was a nice performance by 52 of their 53 players. The one player who did not have a nice performance, and who should hang is face in shame and be forced to smell the combination of vomit and excrement, is LaDainian Tomlinson. What an awful performance. Your team gives you what seemed like 20 touches inside the 5, and you put exactly zero into the endzone. Honestly, I think I could get one touch out of 20 into the endzone.
15.) Dallas Cowboys (4-2)
Nice win, I still don't believe. Sooner or later, Miles Austin's Jerry Rice circa 1989 performance will end, and he will go back to being an average receiver. I feel that their running game will be done in by their collective fragility, and their offensive line is really, really shoddy. That was a good performance, but that was a really important game for the Cowboys to win. Jerry Jones may have cut the team on the bus if they lost.
14.) Atlanta Ravens (4-2)
I realize they lost to the team right above them by 16 just two days ago. I have only one thing to say: this is not Math. There is no transitive property of football. It does not exist. Just because this team lost to the Cowboys, does not mean they are a better team. For example, in 2007, the 18-1 New England lost to the Giants, who lost to the Eagles, who lost to the Seahawks, who lost to the Cardinals, who lost to the Ravens, who lost to the 1-15 Dolphins. That does not mean that the Pats were worse than the Dolphins. All I am saying is that, at the end of the year, when the Boys are 8-8 and the Falcons are 11-5, no one will care about this game.
13.) Baltimore Ravens (3-3)
They still are a tad overrated, but I would fear them in any one game. Their defense is a shell of itself from last year, but we all know that great band of "thugs and convicts" (Limbaugh's words, not mine) can bring the heat any day. Also, they have Joe Flacco, and he is reaching a level that few thought he would. They remain scary, but inevitably irrelevant.
12.) Philadelphia Eagles (4-2)
The lost to the Raiders, and they crushed Tampa, KC, Carolina and Washington. Big Shit. I'll wait until they play and beat a good team before I think of them as anything other than the fringe-playoff team they are. In totally unrelated news, DeSean Jackson is fucking awesome. That boy is like what Devin Hester used to be.
11.) Green Bay Packers (4-2)
They still can't protect the passer. Sure, Cleveland did not get one sack, but then again, unless you dangle a doughnut in front of Shaun Rogers he's invisible. It was great to see a Ryan Grant sighting. Before the season starts, I thought they would go 13-3. Now, I think they can reach that level next year, but if they get by Minnesota this week (and I hope to god they do) they will be my frontrunner for that division.
10.) Houston Texans (4-3)
I found someone who had the Stillaz at #4 last week, but I'm sure I won't find anyone with Houston this high. However, other than the two Colts game (and preview: I am picking them over the Colts when they play in Houston, unless Andre Johnson dies), every game they play is winnable. They are a good team, and the last two weeks showed us that they have some toughness, and unless Matt Schaub ruptures his hymen again, then this team is playoff bound, and a damn dangerous out in the playoffs.
9.) New York Giants (5-2)
I can't drop them that much further, because I give them the benefit of the doubt. They still are a good team, with great depth, but they have been hit by injuries, and they lost to two very good teams. Also, I won't fret about losing at home, since Eli Manning is way worse in the Meadowlands than he is at home. Brandon Jacobs is finally playing with some intensity again.
8.) Minnesota Vikings (6-1)
Tough loss, but I think this was one out of many more Brett "Holy shit, some black guy is running after me and a can't beat a paraplegic in a race, so I will just throw it up for grabs" Favre games to come. Adrian Peterson is an adonis, but that won't help them when the turnovers start piling up and Brad Childress starts becoming the overmatched fool he is.
7.) Arizona Cardinals (4-2)
What ever happened to that theory of losing teams in the Super Bowl are cursed. Sure Tom Brady got hurt, but that team still one 11 games, and now this will be three years in a row where the Super Bowl loser has a winning record. That was a mighty impressive performance Sunday Night. The old Cards would have lost that game 34-10 and Kurt Warner would have fumbled about 10 snaps, but these are not your old Cardinals (read: the 2008 Cardinals).
6.) New England Patriots (5-2)
I hate ranking them this high, because beating two opponents who have combined to win all of zero games by a score of 94-7 is not impressive. However, I will say this, when people feel underwhelmed with a 35-7 victory (as I and many others were with that game), that is a good team. I'm still not to afraid, and I still say that when they play an actual team, points will be harder to come by, but in some strange way, I am happy that the Pats are on top of that division again. Life is better when people hate them.
5.) Cincinnatti Bengals (5-2)
What team has three more impressive victories this season then this: win @ Green Bay, win vs Pittsburgh, win @ Baltimore, thrashing vs Chicago. Those are four good teams, and they beat them all. As I predicted, Carson and Chad went off, and this is the first of many games where those too will single-handidly win fantasy weeks. Now, I don't think Cedric Benson will keep this up all year, but I do think that defense will. This is a damn good team.
4.) Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2)
This is another damn good team, and the division race between them and Cincinnatti will be great. Quietly, they have won 4 straight, and are back to doing what they do best. They play defense, harrass QBs, and take care of business. Ben finally had an average game, but that Running Game is coming together and this team will only improve as Troy gets healthier and healthier. That is scary.
3.) Denver Broncos (6-0)
I think they lose this week against Baltimore, but since no team is going undefeated, that's not a big deal. I did not think they would beat Oakland, I did not think they would beat Dallas, I did not think they would beat New England, San Diego and now Baltimore. And Josh McDaniels' keeps throwing those fistpumps in my face. I hate to admit it, but I like McDaniels. He is no Bill Belichick clone, mainly because if he were, he would be the emotional equivalent of a stuffed platypus.
2.) Indianapolis Colts (6-0)
Hello, an actual schedule. As the year goes on, their thrilling win in Miami and thier beatdown of Arizona in the span of 6 days will seem more impressive, but they really have not been threatened by the Seattle-Tennessee-St. Louis part of the schedule. However, they have good teams each of the next six weeks, so when they run that slate at 5-1, then people will believe. It is scary how good they have been so far. Sure, Peyton seems to be playing Madden on "rookie" right now, but that defense is great too. They are on pace to score 477 points and allow 205, which would be the second greatest winning point-differential ever, behind the 1985 Bears. And yet, they are not the best team.
1.) New Orleans Saints (6-0)
They are. They won a game where Brees had four turnovers. How did they do that? Defense. It is not great, but they force turnovers, as they are on pace to have 48 takeaways. They are, and I cannot stress this enough, the return of the Greatest Show on Turf. They are absolutely unstoppable, and have a swagger that even if you play good defense, force turnovers and get pressure, they don't give a shit. They just continue to mow down yards, score points (they are on pace to shatter the 2007 Patriots scoring record), and force turnovers while playing good but not great defense. That was the recipe the Rams used to be the Greatest Show. This is going to be fun.
Playoff Projections (with record!!!!)
1.) Colts 14-2
2.) Steelers 12-4
3.) Broncos 12-4
4.) Patriots 11-5
5.) Bengals 11-5
6.) Texans 10-6
1.) Saints 14-2
2.) Packers 12-4
3.) Cardinals 11-5
4.) Giants 11-5
5.) Falcons 11-5
6.) Vikings 10-6
Monday, October 26, 2009
This is not a long list, primarily because three hall-of-famers retired or were fired last year (Holmgren, Shanahan and Dungy), and Cowher left two years before. So there is a dearth of deserving coaches.
Mike Tomlin - I love this guy. He inherited a great team, already won a super bowl and has already become the coolest coach in the league today. The players love him, he can motivate, and he can, I cannot stress this enough, act like a total badass. There is no one cooler than him in the league. Being in Pittsburgh, he will always have a competitive team and will stay there a long time, because Job Security in Pittsburgh is like it is in Washington, except the exact opposite.
Tom Coughlin - He's won a super bowl (one out of three active coaches) and took an expansion Jacksonville team and made them an instant competitor. He made the playoffs four times with two different franchises and won a super bowl. He changed his entire demeanor and it payed off. His record is not that great, but considering he had an expansion franchise, it is not all that bad. He deserves a hall-nod just as much as Bill Cowher does.
Andy Reid - He may be an awful coach in terms of game-management, but the guy can coach, and build a team. He has done things few have, like getting the number one seed three straight times and making it to 5 NFC Championships in an eight year span. His winning percantage is basically the same as Bill Belichick, and Bill is a lock. Andy Reid has one of the most underrated resumes, making the playoffs 7 times in 11 years. The most amazing part of his resume is that in his seven playoff appearances, he has never lost the first game. He is a great coach, and should be a hall-of-famer.
Bill Belichick - I hate him with a never-ending passion. I really do. He's arrogant, his a major dick. He's secretive, he's disloyal; however, after all that, he is an amazing head coach. His 15-4 playoff record is one of the best all-time. I feel like he was more important to the Pats dynasty than Brady was. He did fail miserably in Cleveland (which did indirectly lead to them leaving town), but his record in New England is amazing. Any coach that wins three super bowls can go 0-16 for two years running and still get in. His enshrinement speech will be boring as fuck, and he dresses like a homeless man, but he deserves a first-ballot nod. Even with spygate smearing that legacy.
Derrelle Revis - He's that good. He may just be in his 3rd year, but he shut down Randy Moss and Andre Johnson in a way only one man has done in recent years. He deserves every bit of praise that is heaped upon him. Corners age pretty well too, at least the great ones, so his future is bright. He will be one of the best in the game for a long, long time.
Kelvin Hayden - Here is the list of Colts defenders that Bill Polian has given a second contract to: Freeney, Sanders and Hayden. That is it. He deserves that second contract, and he deserves to be in this discussion as well. Tampa-2 corners will never have the outlandish stats that they do in more pressure oriented schemes, but he is an absolute beast. He is a great tackler, has great instincts and can play that Tampa-2 perfectly. He will become a top-4 corner soon and will start to get the recognition he deserves.
Asante Samuel - I've always felt he was a tad overrated, more of a product of having great players around him, but his numbers speak for themselves. He has 4 postseason TDs, which is the all-time record. He has 30 picks at age 28 (almost a Reed like pace) and has acheived the status of a shut-down corner. Plus, his name was responsible for one of the comedic brilliances of this decade, when Phil Simms used to call him "Asante Samuels" for years. Just for that, and the playoff performances, he deserves a spot.
Nnamdi Asomugha - He held Andre Johnson to 1 catch for 4 yards this year. He held him to 3 catches for 24 yards last year. When they played Carolina, he covered Steve Smith all day, and Delhomme threw at him once, and he picked it off. QBs only threw at him 16 times last year, and only 50 times the last two years. He deserves every penny the Raiders pay him. Plus, he's been able to do all that in the black-hole of football and he's an outstanding guy as he's won the NFL humanitarian award each of the last three years. Finally, his name is fucking Nnamdi Asomugha, which is by far the chillest name in NFL history.
Troy Polamalu - Many people probably have him pegged as a sure fire. Not me, as he has not been that unbeleivably spectacular. To be in that top category, you need to be special. Troy is an excellent player, has amazing ball skills and hits like a line backer. He is straight ferocious and I would shit my pants if he came up to hit me. He is an all-around player, and is one of the most instinctive, smart safeties in the NFL. The perfect example was against the Ravens in the playoffs last year, when he lept over the offensive line to stop Joe Flacco on a QB sneak. That was amazing.
Charles Woodson - He may be on the fringe of this list, but his career reads out much like his Raider predecessor Mike Haynes, a hall-of-famer. Haynes hada 46 career picks, one sack and two touchdowns. Woodson has 40 career picks, nine sacks and eight career touchdowns. After a good start, he had a lull in the middle of his career, but has been reborn since he became a Packer. In his last three plus years (52 games) he has 4.0 sacks, 23 ints, 4 fumble recoveries and six touchdowns. He is an all-time great.
Darren Sharper - He is one of the most underappreciated safeties in recent memory, being overshadowed by the Reed/Polamalu duo, but he is the Ernie Banks of the NFL safeties, or in other words, a guy who tirelessly played very good for an exceptional amount of years. He has now done it for three franchises, and played at an all-pro level for each. He has not had amazing singular years, like Reed, but he has 13 career TDs, 60 career ints (ninth all-time) and he is a fearless guy who has rarely missed games. He may have never been extraordinary, but being above ordinary for an extended period of time should be viewed as good.
Brian Dawkins - He was the heart and soul of the NFC's premier defense of the last 10 years. The Bucs had Sapp/Brooks/Lynch, the Steelers had a bunch of great leaders, the Ravens had Ray and Ed Reed. The Eagles had only him. His stats and accolades are all hall-worthy, with 34 ints, 3 tds, 21 sacks (third highest for a DB all-time) and 4 all-pro selections. However, his surefire canidacy is far more than just numbers, it is about what he meant and what he did. Along with the late Jim Johnson, he was the only constant of a defense that had a six year run of the following defensive ranks: 7, 2, 2, 4, 7, 2. He was the anchor of a defense that led the Eagles to heights that the franchise had never reached. His heart and ferocity epitomized the city of Philadelphia.
Champ Bailey - He was the ultimate shutdown corner. In eight full years, he had 44 ints, but when you consider the fact that he was targetted fewer times than most DBs, that number is scary. He was, at one time, the only corner people game-planned around. He made Tom Brady look foolish in the playoffs. He was traded for a RB who put up four 1300 yard seasons in the five years since the deal and the team who let him go rues the day they did. Honestly, RBs are probably as dime-a-dozen as corners, and Portis is an excellent RB, and Washington lost that deal, and Dan Snyder has spent approxamately 500 billion trying to replace him (with characters like sex-boat pioneer Fred Smoot, starbucks-addicted Shawn Springs, wildly overrated DeAngelo Hall and actually good Carlos Rogers). He was a baller, and QBs were afraid to death of him.
Ed Reed - The feeling I have for Belichick (abject hatred, geniune want to fight his fat ass) is
pretty much the opposite for Reed. Reed is my favorite player not named Peyton Manning. Reed is the most dominant safety this era, and possibly ever. For whatever reason, there was a large Polamalu/Reed debate last year. First of all, they play different positions. However, Reed used to play Troy's position, and he played it better than Troy. When Reed was a SS, he averaged 65 tackles, 7 ints, 1.5 sacks and 2 tds a year, plus he won a Defensive Player of the Year award as a SS (something Troy never did). Then, he converted to FS and continued to play at a first-ballot hall of fame level. He is a guy who has 45 ints in 7.5 years, and has 12 career touchdowns (and 2 more that were called back for penalties). He has the longest INT return TD, and the second longest. He has twice picked off 9 passes and twice picked off 7 passes in a year. He has 4 career playoff ints in four games. He was by far the best player on the field in the 2006 AFC Divisional loss to Indianapolis (that film should be sent to Canton). And to complete his domination, he has blocked 3 punts and returned all for touchdowns. He is a special, special player and is as important to the defensive success of the Ravens as Ray Lewis is.
Terrell Suggs - He's a great player. But he is also a great story, as he was raised in a broken home, but a white family cared for him, forced him to study, to find the lord, to focus his abilities. I'm sure most opposing teams hate that white family, since it is them who has allowed his terrorness Terrell Suggs be unleashed to the NFL. He is still just 27, and he already has 55 sacks as a LB, and has two career touchdowns. He is still improving and that is the most scary part. He is the only LB that is not a product of Ray Lewis (I'm looking at you, Adalius Thomas) playing next to him.
Patrick Willis - He led the NFL in tackles as a rookie. Was third in tackles as a sophomore. Has already been an all-pro, and has five sacks and three ints (returning 2 for touchdowns) in two plus years. He is often compared to a young Derrick Brooks, and he has the speed and the instincts that merit that comparison (unlike Matt Ryan who does not really merit that Peyton Manning comparison, at all). He will be an all-time great.
Brian Urlacher - He is a tad overrated, and he has entered the neverworld known as the pussy of Paris Hilton, yet he is undeniably a rare talent. He is a 4 time all-pro, a guy who has racked up 37 sacks, 17 ints, and 90 tackles a year. He is the heart and soul of the third best NFC defense of the decade, and he is the connecting link to the team that was the top-ranked defense in 2002 and 2005 and the super bowl defense in 2006. He was the team MVP of a Super Bowl team that started Rex Grossman (the QB equivalent of burning dog shit) at QB. That is enough to merit serious consideration for this title. I, and society, may never forgive him for dating Paris and also having a weird paternity suit that invloved his kid and Michael Flatley (Lord of the Dance).
Julian Peterson - This may be really stretching it, but his stats are deserving. He has 50 sacks, 16 turnovers forced and a touchdowns. Has been a 5 time pro-bowler and the defensive leader of two different franchises. He has been a multiple time pro-bowler for two different teams. He is a longshot, and probably will not ever get it, but it is hard to argue that he is not as deserving than some of the lesser linebackers in the hall of fame.
James Farrior - He was the heart and soul of the Pittsburgh defense. Joey Porter was the mouth, but Farrior was the leader of the new-Steel Curtain. He was an all-pro, he was a pro-bowler. He has forced 25 turnovers, he has 30 sacks, which are all big numbers for an inside LB in a 3-4. He was one of the most stand-up guys out there. He was a tackling machine for six years in Pittsburgh, where he helped lead the team to 3 AFC Title games, and 2 super bowls. Just for his credentials as a leader in Pittsburgh, and his postseason success, the man might oneday be enshrined.
Joey Porter - Farrior's teammate was just one level ahead, and one of the most feared players coming off that edge. His antics and average trash-talking may have made him some cruel ironic version of himself in recent years, but the guy is an insanely good player. He's only 32, and has 85.5 sacks so he has the opportunity to crack the 100 sack platuea. He has 12 career ints (a good number for a pass-rushing LB). He is the Kevin Greene of the next decade, and is a more inspirational player. Some of his best football may still be left, as he had 17.5 sacks last year, and seems energized for the future. LBs have not been the all-time greats they were in past generations (as Derrick Brooks retired last year, so I did not include him, although he is a sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer), so the standards are a little down. Either way, Canton should be ready for his eras best pass-rushing LB.
Probably the easiest, most obvious selection on defense. He is the Peyton Manning of defense. He has had great years now, but people forget just how good he was at the beginning of the decade and the end of last decade. He was superman in a Raven uniform, racking up tackles at record pace. He is 2 ints away from the rare 30 sack - 30 int club (members: 1 - Rodney Harrison). He is a two-time defensive player of the year. Above everything, he is the main reason (along with Ed Reed recently) that Baltimore is one of the model franchises in the NFL. He is the heart and soul of that defense. Everyone plays through him, feeds off of his passion and intensity. He is the reason Mike Nolan and Marvin Lewis were thought of as defensive genius's (Nolan may still be one after what he is now doing in Denver - although he has the second most inspiring defensive player there in Dawkins), and the main reason a laundry list of LBs were considered good players (Jamie Sharper, Peter Boulware, Ed Hartwell, Adalius Thomas). Most of those are bit-players, but became pro-bowlers next to the brilliance that is Ray Lewis. He was a hall-of-famer 5 years ago, but his recent run of newfound success is now making one of the all-time greats. Singletary to Taylor to Lewis. That is his company.
Jared Allen - He is just 26, and he is racking up numbers like no one else active. Now, that may be due to the fact that he gets to play with the Williams wall next to him, but he did it in Kansas City, a black-hole of suck when it comes to pass rushing. He has 65.5 sacks in 71 starts which is a staggering number. He has, and I know this will sound eternally cliched, a "motor that never stops" but it is true. He is one of the premier pass rushers and is one of the best at stripping the ball. His numbers are scary and he is getting better. If he continues what he has done in two plus years in Minnesota (37.5 sacks in 37 games) he will be a lock. He probably will not continue at that pace, but anything close and he is in.
Haloti Ngata - He is the most athletic 340 lb nosetackle in football, as evidenced by his three career ints, including one he returned 60 yards. However it is his massive frame and great disrupting skills that make him arguably the best nose tackle in the game today at just 25. He gets pressure, he eats up blockers and he inflicts major, major pain on running backs, and sometimes quarterbacks. He is a great player, is improving and will be a fixture in Hawaii for years to come.
Julius Peppers - It all depends on if he wants to play. If he does, he is the most athletic dynamic D-Lineman in football. For all the flak he is taking this year, he has 6 sacks in 6 games and is well on his way to his sixth double digit sack year in 8 seasons. He is also freakishly athletic, shown by his 60 yard fumble return and 97 yard int return for touchdowns. There is nothing he cannot do with his athleticism and ability. If he stays focused and motivated, he will rack up sacks and make this a shoo-in, but that fire is not always there.
Dwight Freeney - He is the most dominating end since the moment he entered the NFL. He had a bit of a sack lull in 2006-2007, where he had only 9 sacks in 27 games, but he still led the NFL in hurries and hits in that span, showing that he was still a terror. He basically patented the spin-move, and used it to spin by and embarras first-ballot hall of famer Jonathan Ogden, like he has never been embarrased before. He is now playing the best football of his career, with 7 sacks, 5 hits and 12 hurries in 6 games, which means he is on pace for career highs in all three. What can he not do? He is the key of that defense, a defense that has been the NFL's second most consistent the last five years after Pittsburgh's.
Jason Taylor - He may care more about his looks (and definitely cares more about his dancing) than he does about football, but that only makes his scary numbers more fearsome. He has been the best pass-rusher since the day he entered the NFL. He is the premeir of this generation of players. He has 8 years with at least 9 sacks. He has 8 career TDs, a ridiculous amount for a defensive lineman. He is the best at what he did for his career, and deserves a first-ballot enshrinement. Now, the standards are lower, since lineman and QBs have never been better at minimizing sacks, but he is the best of this era (I cannot stress that enough).
So, there is the defense and the coaches. The offense and the special teams come next.
Friday, October 23, 2009
San Diego (-4.5) @ Kansas City
San Diego really is not any good. They were playing for their pathetic lives last week, and played with perfect SoCal easiness. I'm not sure they even know what standings are. Either that, or they buy into the eternal crap about this being the "most talented team in football" and that has gone to their heads. Or maybe its just this: LT is old, slow, not explosive and hallucinatory. Every year for the past couple he does the same "I'm not old, just watch I'm back this year" routine in preseason. Then fools like Peter King believe him. Peter may be stupid, but I'm not. What is LT supposed to say? Is he actually going to admit that he is washed up? No, and I don't blame him. As long as his ruse can get him paid by the Chargers, I would not stop. As for the Cheifs, they are alive. That is enough for me to pick them (that, and the fact that they play the Chargers well every time) against a team that is emotionally dead.
Chargers 20 Kansas City 24 (KC)
San Francisco @ Houston (-3)
Ahh, my beloved Texans bandwagon. How empty you are. Even though Matt Schaub is quietly leading the NFL in TDs, Andre Johnson is continuing his man-beast routine and Steve Slaton continues... actually scratch that, Slaton is doing jackshit and that annoys the hell out of me and my fantasy team. What can I do but wait on him? Either way, they are better than a San Francisco team that is about two weeks from getting all the "Mike Singletary Pumped Up" juice out of their system. That rah-rah stuff can only work for so long. In semi-related news, Michael Crabtree is finally playing. Thank God, we can all go back to worshipping this cretin. He's not that good. He played in a shutgun-spread. I could put up 80 catches in a shutgun-spread. Heck, Swath (for those who don't know who or what that is, don't worry, there's no need to) could put up 50. He's a diva that ranks up there with anyone. At least guys like TO and Moss and Ocho show up and play as rookies. God knows what Crabtree has been doing the last two months. Here's my guess: stuck in the bathroom looking at a mirror to see his beautiful self and stuffing himself with Pie. It shows you how average the Niners are that they are starting a guy that just shows up to the team two weeks ago.
49ers 14 Texans 31 (HOU)
New England @ Tampa Bay (-14.5)
Once again, I was not impressed by that 59-0 win. And neither will I be when they inevitably win this one 45-3. These are two of the worst teams that are in this league, and now I'm suddenly supposed to believe the Pats are back. Nope, not buying it. In fact, fuck logic. I like doing random picks, and I have been on a pretty good roll so far, so I will go against all convention and all sane forms of thinking and pick the Bucs to cover. I mean, this is a home game for them. Also, the thought of a team called the Patriots playing in our old owner's land, there is some bad karma there. Call it the revenge of King George II.
Patriots 34 Buccaneers 24 (TB)
Indianapolis (-13) @ St. Louis
I love the Colts, and I try to watch as much of all their games as humanly possible, and I have no intent on watching this game. What is the point? It is a damned if you do damned if you don't situation. If they lay the hammer down and win 41-10, then that is what they are supposed to do. If the Rams come out and play inspired and the Colts win 31-17, then everyone will bash the Colts. Precendent says that the Colts don't like to Pat-it-up (my twist on run-it-up) and win games 52-7, but really, this is a new Manning and a new team. This Colts defense is one of the top-5 defense in the NFL. There are not many great defenses this year (I mean Baltimore's D is as strong as a piece of paper) and the Colts are one of the few. Bob Sanders is back (for now) and the defense will play even more amped up than usual and that will translate to a semi-patting-it-up. I know none of that made sense, but I have nothing to say about a game that does not interest me. I'm in preseason mode for this one - just no one get hurt.
Colts 38 Rams 10 (IND)
Minnesota @ Pittsburgh (-4)
Favre is 40 years old. Pittsburgh is slated for mid-50's. Now that may seem like a fine temperature, but when you are 40 (that's in football years, which is like 96 in human years) and have been playing in a climate-controlled dome all year long, then mid-50's is the equivalent of playing inside a snowman. Not good. The Steelers are the only team that has a chance to have a dominant defense this year (other than the Colts :)!!!) and it starts now that Troy is back and that defense is playing better. They have allowed 20 points on defense the last two weeks and Harrison and Woodley have finally been alerted that real football is in fact being played currently. Ben is throwing for 300 yards a game right now, and the Vikings were shredded a week ago by a lesser QB and lesser targets. Santonio will have a big day. The key is Peterson. The Steelers can win this game even if Peterson goes off, but if they shut down AD, they are back for real. Either way, this is the day we see the defending champs in their true ugly colors for real.
Vikings 14 Steelers 27 (PIT)
Green Bay (-7) @ Cleveland
That is a scary line for a team that has a tendency of playing down to their opponent at times, and the Browns have not exactly been all that bad recently. However, and this is not exactly a new theory, with all the really shitty teams this year that the crowds in these buildings are bad. Even in Cleveland where their fans are the fan equivalent of people locked in a insane asylum, their crowds are not that good. That's why their only win was in Buffalo (and why Buffalo won in New York and so on). It may make sense to me and me only, but that's all I need. I really don't want to pick Green Bay, but I cannot pick a team that has a coach who is fatter than their O-Line combined. That's one of my rules in life. When a head coach starts pushing 400 lbs, that's it for that team.
Packers 34 Browns 14 (GB)
Buffalo @ Carolina (-7)
I'm pulling a classic John Kerry here with Carolina. I'm waffling on them again. At first, even after that horrendous opening game, I believed in this team. Then, I totally did what every Carolina fan did, became convinced that Jake Delhomme would drag this team down into his own pile of sewage. Now, I am convinced that this team will not be all that bad. Now, I'm not saying that they will suddenly storm back and win this division, but I just don't think the wildcard is out of reach. Now, Jake Delhomme has all the ability in the world to put it way, way, way out of reach, but I, as stunningly stupid as this may seem, trust him enough to pull a Kyle Orton the next 11 games. This team will be heard from again. As for Buffalo, they will not. Dick Jauron is the anti-Mangini. I think that Eric is sapping the life out of Dick Jauron every day and consuming said life, converting into food and feasting on it. Mangini get fatter and Jauron gets more gangrenous and lifeless every day. Its uncanny. The other theory to Jauron's ability to not move, talk or breathe may be that TO killed him, and they stuffed him up and propped him up on the sidelines every week.
Bills 10 Panthers 27 (CAR)
New York (a) (-6) @ Oakland
Is it really wise to give the Jets 6 points on the road when their QB has been underperforming JaMarcus Russell the last few weeks. Honestly, I have seen my fair share of bad QB play over the years (JaMarcus, Marques Tuaisosopo, Andrew Walter, Everything that Peyton Manning does but only opposite), but I don't think I have seen anything as miserable as Sanchez last week. I simply cannot trust him to go into a semi-tough place to play. Oakland is, at least for them, on a roll. They played inspired defense, and they only need to play semi-inspired defense to own Mark Sanchez. It will happen. JaMarcus will probably be confused to death by Rex Ryan's schemes (mainly becuase JaMarcus seems to have the IQ of a sofa), but I think he can have a better game than the Sanchize.
Jets 13 Raiders 20 (OAK)
Chicago @ Cincinnatti (-1.5)
This is the underrated game of the week. Both of these teams are in that, semi-contender that loses to every good team they play and beats every bad one. It is always interesting when those type of teams play each other (like CHI-ATL last week). So I go with who needs this more. Quietly, Pittsburgh has won 3 in a row, and that much bally-hooed Bengals resurgence and leading the AFC North is over. They will be hungry in many ways. Chad and Ocho are primed to start their yearly dominance month and that defense will want to prove it is for real even without Antwan Odom (which they probably are not, but can be for a week). Chicago is a good team, and a team that will challenge for the WC, and maybe the division if the Favre from 2008 returns as I think he will eventually. However, they just do not need this game the way Cincy does.
Bears 20 Bengals 28 (CIN)
Atlanta @ Dallas (-4)
Why the hell is Dallas favored at all (let alone the ludicrous 4)? Why would anyone think Dallas is better than Atlanta? Sure, Dallas is at home, but its not like they have been lights out at home (lost to NYG, looked like a San Diego look-a-like against Carolina), and barely beat KC the other day. They are just not that good, and Atlanta is a legitimate top-10 team. I thought they would take a step back, and I was wrong. I really don't know how they do it, becuase I feel that Matt Ryan and Michael Turner are both overrated, but they get the job done. On the other hand, I know how Dallas does not do it, becuase Tony Romo is the most overrated athlete since Jeter, and they do not get the job done. For example, the last time they played in a big do-or-die game, they lost 44-6.
Falcons 31 Cowboys 23 (ATL)
New Orleans (-6.5) @ Miami
This is also an underrated game, and this is my upset of the week. Miami has the team that can beat New Orleans. The Saints are a slightly different version of Indy, and Miami played Indy better than anyone else has so far, and that was before they upgraded Chads. Chad Henne is in for a bit of a fall, but not at home (somehow his first three starts were at home, lucky guy), and that Wildcat can do wonders against a overly-aggresive team. Miami is just a fun team to watch eversince they took the Wildcat to the next level and ever since they started playing a QB that can throw an out. New Orleans is the best team in the NFL, but they are not going undefeated and this is the type of game, with Atlanta looming next week, that they may take a little bit off, especially since it is an interconference game (just like Atlanta did when they went to New England). I really hope that I am right, becuase I really want this Miami story to continue. I, like Jon Gruden, cannot get enough Wildcat.
Saints 24 Dolphins 27 (MIA)
Arizona @ New York (n) (-7)
I still think the Cards win that division, but New York better win this game, or no one will ever take them seriously. They were simply outclassed last week, and it showed. They looked like a team that had no intention of even trying to stop Drew Brees. Now, Kurt Warner can do a similar thing, but the Giants, as we know from Super Bowl XLII, are a prideful bunch. They are a mouthy bunch, but they usually play with a swagger too (god knows what happened last week with that Swagger). If these are the real Giants, they blow the Cards out. The Cardinals are a good team, but I think they are not quite at that Giants level, at least not now and not in New York. The only thing I can think of is that with the Yankees playing potentially Game 6 or 7 at the same time, then the atmosphere will not be true Giants Stadium in the night.
Cardinals 20 Giants 31 (NYG)
Philadelphia (-7) @ Washington
Well, Philly is a lot better than Washington. On paper, they are at least 13 points better. However, since this Philly team evidently loves making people believe that they are overrated and that Donovan McNabb needs to go. Honestly, they are a bizarro version of San Diego. Both teams are really really schizophrenic. They can both win games any week and lose games. But Philly seems to only rise up for big games, while the Chargers like to tape thier dicks behing their balls and pretend to be women rather than man up and play a real team. Anyway, enough Chargers bashing. Philly right now is at a stage where they actively try to get Donovan McNabb killed.
Eagles 20 Redskins 16 (WAS)
Enjoy the games!!!
Last Week: 10-4