Monday, October 22, 2007

Monday Morning Hangover 10-22-2007




This week, we got a nice, quiet Sunday of football, as I returned to the cavernous Kingshead Tavern with two good friends and, between us, about half of a good liver. Suffice to say, the bartender was less than thrilled that after six hours of watching football, the bulk of our money went to the breakfast sandwiches we bought somewhere else. She’s never going to make enough money to be a professional ballet dancer that way (/chortle)! Anyway, the craziest part of my weekend certainly came prior to Sunday (a Saturday night Justice concert will do that to you…at least I think so…most of the experience is kind of hazy at this point), so I feel it’s in our best interest to skip the pleasantries and get right to the thoughts I was left with after watching the Jets rip my heart out again…

- I’ve pretty much said everything that needs to be said on the matter.

- Meanwhile, elsewhere in the AFC East, the Dolphins/Pats game was further evidence that Bill Belichick is displeased with the way Patriotgate went down. At this point, it’s going to take an injury for any team to be given a realistic shot against the Pats. That said, the run game is showing signs of slowing. That may be because they simply don’t have to run, but with the weather getting colder, it will be interesting to see if the Brady-Moss connection continues to impose its will on teams. I, for one, don’t see a perfect sweep to the Super Bowl coming, but considering that I continue to dress up in my Jets sweatshirt to watch Thomas Jones run into the backs of our O-linemen, I’m an idiot.

- On a related note, after Alex crowned last week’s Atlanta/Giants debacle the worst example of a team quitting she’d ever seen, I’m going to take that crown and fit it firmly on the head of Cam Cameron and his Dolphins. Down 42-7 in the second half, the Fins came out running the ball, making it perfectly clear that they just wanted the day to be over. Unsurprisingly, Ronnie Brown is now out for the season. Karma is a bitch.

- Staying on the shame of my birthplace, I don’t want to hear from Jason Taylor any more. Is he great? Sure he is. But that defense has given up 49, 41, 35, and 31 points to the Pats, Browns, Raiders, and Jets, respectively. Only one of those teams has ANY business scoring about 30 points. Again, I’m not blaming him; I like Jason Taylor, but he’s a team leader, and his whole “things could be worse…I could be in Iraq” rant is not the stuff that inspires middling players to overachieve.

- Finally, is it time to realistically consider that the Dolphins could go 0-16? When do the odds swing in favor of that happening? They have maybe three or four winnable games left, and with Ronnie Brown gone…

- There is no bigger travesty than JP Losman getting benched for Trent Edwards. I just don’t get the logic behind it. Does his 1 to 4 TD to INT ratio scream untapped potential? Are we this enamored with the personnel prowess that Dick Jauron has displayed up to this point? After a season in which JP Losman proved he may be the best young deep ball quarterback in the league, and in which he was TOLD he had earned the starting job, throwing him under the bus for getting injured is unacceptable, and should send a message to every member of the Bills organization regarding honesty and accountability at the top.

- Not to alarm anybody, but the Lions are six wins away from Jon Kitna being a prophet and the entire city of Detroit being converted to Christianity, and it’s not unrealistic for them to pull those wins off, given their schedule. Seriously, how is the Pope not getting face time with Kitna? This could be the biggest coup for Catholicism since the Crusades!

- Also, I like the Lions as a team that will get exponentially better over the next 2-3 years. They’re set on offense. Kevin Jones showed that he can handle running against tough defenses, and the receiving corps is who they should have been three years earlier. From here on out, you can draft defense and build around a core that includes Cory Redding, Shaun Rogers, and Ernie Sims. Get back to me in two to three years, people (because yeah, this blog will still be around, right?).

- Ok, let’s get crazy with the NFC South. The Saints have won the last two games, and are getting more comfortable with Reggie Bush as a feature back. Drew Brees seems to be settling his jitters too. They’re 2-4 right now, and they play San Fran, Jacksonville, St. Louis, Houston, Carolina, Tampa Bay, Atlanta, Arizona, Philly, and Chicago. The can win all of those games except for maybe Jacksonville and Houston. If they go 10-6 in the NFC South, could we be looking at a playoff team solely thanks to the weakness of the Saints’ schedule? I’m waiting to see who the first football commentator or coach to suggest that New Orleans doesn’t deserve the record their easy season should hand them. Keyshawn, don’t let me down!

- I don’t know if he was catering to the local fan base or what, but Mike Nolan’s facial hair was the definition of prison pussy.

- Was Trent Dilfer always this bad? Did he complete any passes in that Super Bowl that he won? Also, I’m pretty sure Mike Nolan hates fantasy football. There really is no other explanation for Frank Gore getting 14 carries while giving the Trent Dilfer aerial assault 38 different throws to send to various blank spaces on the field. That’s the secret of Dilfer’s success: His bad throws are so bad that NOBODY expects them to wind up where they do, not even the defense.

- The Redskins barely escaping Arizona with a win is not the momentum they need before they head to Foxboro. That said, I’m ready to go out on a limb and say that the Redskins will beat the Patriots. They have the run game to maintain possession, and they have all the ingredients of the kind of passing offense that can give the Pats defense fits (two speedy wideouts and a tight end that can get loose up the middle seam). If Behemoth Campbell can keep his head on straight and not force passes that don’t need to be thrown, the offense could get the score or two that they need to beat out a pats offense that hasn’t seen a pass defense quite like the Redskins secondary.

- Eight field goals is ABSURD, and it’s also evident of a team that wins the battle of field position. Jeff Fisher is a genius. Know this.

- On a side note, any chance I get to type “Sage Rosenfels’s four touchdowns weren’t enough” is a serendipity.

- Does somebody want to explain to me how the Chiefs have a winning record at the bye? Seriously, let’s not sleep on this team’s chances to make the show come January. They’ve already stolen one from the Chargers (in San Diego, no less), and they’re still waiting for Kennison to return and LJ to really hit his stride. Add to that the unheralded QB smarts of Damon Huard and the…well…the something of Herm Edwards, and this team could sneak into the postseason. I told you last Friday: Shooting distance is what matters in the end.

- The Vikings are the most bizarre bad team that I’ve ever seen. They’re nowhere near good enough to win (having Action Jackson under center guarantees that), but they are just so damn tough for teams to not lose to (know that as an English major, ending a sentence with a preposition gives me hives). It’s like Minnesota’s own awfulness surrounds them like a marsh. True, they’re stuck at the deep center, but other teams are getting their boots stuck as they wade around.

- I did enjoy watching my two favorite running backs go head to head in the Dallas/Minnesota game. Watching Adrian Peterson is like watching Eddie Murphy do comedy. Everything is technically perfect, yet with one or two little improvisations that make the whole affair that much more spectacular. Meanwhile, Marion Barber III reminds me of why I liked watching Ricky Williams run so much. He actively enjoys finding and clearing out the path of greatest resistance. It’s like watching a playful bulldozer.

- Not to kick a guy when he’s down, but after discovering that there was a headset malfunction on the Chicago sidelines, we’re left to conclude that Andy Reid got outcoached by Brian Griese. Still think you belong on the sidelines, coach?

- Marc Bulger has broken ribs, and he took seven sacks. Does anyone else think that the Rams might be trying to find an excuse to cut him and drop that big contract he signed?

- Could someone explain to me why whenever a defensive or offensive minded coordinator becomes head coach somewhere, his team automatically becomes great at the side of the ball that’s NOT his specialty, and lacks on the other side? Marvin Lewis at Cincy, Brian Billick at Baltimore, Tony Dungy at Indy, now Mike Tomlin at Pittsburgh?

- PS: There is no cooler looking coach on the sidelines than Mike Tomlin.


That’s all for me today! Keep your eyes out this week for some interesting updates. Also, we’ve added a “Digg This” toggle to the bottom of posts, and we’d really appreciate it if you all “Dugg” (oh you crazy kids and your inter-web-speak) the posts that you liked. Watch out tomorrow for Alex’s MNF redux, where we’ll find out which AFC South team wins the division, and which one goes

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