Okay, now it is clear that this isn't your grandad's NFL anymore. With high-definition cameras getting every conceivable angle possible, it is clear that we see more of the game today than we did...hell, five years ago. Mo' Money always equals mo' problems. This, coupled with the ability to replay all these angles during injury timeouts, has given the announcer and viewer the ability to be the judge, jury and finer of all of these instances, all unique unto themselves.
The first is a no-brainer, Donkeykong Suh is clearly a moron and deserves the two-game suspension he received. This guy had it coming and I'm not talking from a football playing aspect. What I mean is, I'm fine with his "dirty" style of play--in fact, I'm a fan. Suh would have fit in quite nicely in the Raiders of the 1970's. I'm okay with his play for the most part. But his attitude sucks, but you can't always make these fuckers own up to that because bad attitudes are somehow acceptable from children these days. For example, after the Lions lost to the Falcons in Week 5, Suh was talking shit about certain Falcons players after he was accussed of making comments to Matt Ryan about his ankle injury being "karmatic" for something forgettable that happened in the game earlier. When he was making these comments, he was pompus, petty and sarcastic. He reminded me of most every student that has set foot in my English classroom.
The karma came back at Suh tenfold on Thanksgiving when he stomped that Packer lineman guy. His reaction after getting tossed was no different than a child who got his Xbox taken away for smoking bath salts and sexting his sixth grade teacher. Now, Suh has vowed to change his bad attitude while he sits at home, without 2 weeks of pay, playing Xbox while sexting Raven-Symoné.
The Nick Novak "piss-gate" is goddamned funny--and yet pathetic. I was watching this game and when I saw the cutaway, I thought he was adjusting his cup--but instead he was draining his man hose. I even heard that the commish is considering fining the micturating place-kicker. Gimme a break! The real shitty thing here is that a cameraman and producer were the ones responsible for the exposure on live TV. Who are these sick fucks and how come they don't get fined by the league? I'm sure this isn't the first time a player has made water on the sideline and why don't they have porta-potties on the side line so a player can go there instead of running to the locker room? And besides, had Novak ran to the locker room, he would have missed the opportunity to kick, thus forcing Norv Turner to burn a timeout. I think Novak did the right thing and I garentee he didn't think a camera was fixed on him--but maybe all players should conduct themselves as if they are always on camera--and don't think that their media-training will catch up to the players here, but I digress.
Jerome Simpson's epic flop against the Browns was also comical, I bet Vlade Divac was watching highlights at his home in Serbia and became engorged when he saw Jerome flop à la himself. And guess what, Simpson got the penalty, so good for him. It looked like a deleted scene from Ace Ventura didn't it? Quit hatin'!
Stevie Johnson's touchdown dance wasn't obvious at first--but after much, too much analysis, some have misconstrued the dance to attack everything from Plaxico Burress' gunshot wound, 9/11 and the Lindbergh kidnapping. Gimme a break, it was just a touchdown dance that no one got it until the game was over and the twittersphere blew up.
Is it just me, or is this league analogous to anything George Orwell wrote about? There are far too many channels, too many opinions being spewed out of talking head facsimiles of former players trying to relive their former glory vicariously through the current crop and too many angles for league officials to spy and fine. But I guess the league is no different than anything else in this country--this is and will continue to be my biggest fear. Anyways, Bulletboys were always my favorite 80's metal band...
- New York Giants. After the steamrolling they took from the Saints last night, we might actually be seeing the end of the Tom Coughlin era--an era that should have ended in 2006. After the Giants miss the playoffs this year, we're gonna see a big move after Coughlin is let go. If you ask me, this team was built for a Cowher or a Fisher, defensively minded dudes who like to grow they facial hair out in December as they prepare for the postseason. Who knows, maybe Coughlin will be in a position after the new year to interview for his old job in Jacksonville. Stranger things have happened--for Christ's sake Kiss made this.
- New Orleans Saints. Lest we forget this sleeping dragon. That shellacking they gave the G-Men is only the beginning of Drew Brees' dominance. They guys are good enough to beat the Pack--and they might be the only ones.
- Baltimore Ravens. Strong statement win against the Niners on Autumnal Galliform Day. This is the best team in the AFC. Call me crazy, but I see a Saints/Ravens showdown in the Supe Bowl. That D against that O is the best that this league has to offer. Get yer popcorn ready!
- CJ2K. Look who woke the fuck up. I wonder how many fairy tale football owners curse his acronym? I knew he would wake up eventually. But is CJ2K and Hasselbeck's play good enough to get the W's this team needs down the stretch to squeeze out the Bengals in the Wild Card? Or better yet, steal the division crown from the woebegone Toros?
- Caleb Hanie. Before I take a dump on his first half play, I will say that Hanie looked decent down the stretch. After throwing 3 Ints, he threw a pair of passes that made Johnny Know look like a ProBowler. And if it wasn't for the botched spike at the end, who knows what Caleb would have pulled out of his ass (an incomplete pass is my guess). Whatever, the Bears put this dude in positions of failure and expect magic--last year's NFC championship and this, his first start in the blackhole. I think he will rebound this week against KC and Martz will have an adjusted gameplan ready. If Martz would just listen to Urlacher, Hanie could be the second coming of "Tebow Time" in the Windy.
"Watch it, non-believer!"
- The Rex Grossman Award...goes to that asshole of a collarbone of Matt Leinart's. I surely hope that the Titans catch the Toros here in the end so that we don't see T.J. Yates in the godammned playoffs, essentially making this team the 2011 version of the 2010 Seattle Seahawks--happy to be there, even though they are a laughable inclusion. It's times like this that make me wish the Colts had Manning all season, thus ending any talk of a Toro postseason.
- Eagles/Chargers. Yo! Media. They done. I know you all want to collectively count them in at this point because a lot of you had them as a potential Super Bowl contenders. But it's over and Andy Reid will be wearing a St. Louis Ram windbreaker next fall (do they make XXXL?) and Norv will move back down the coordinator food chain in Seattle or Buffalo. So, sports media, if you quit whining about these two paper kangaroos, The Book will leave these teams out of the "Predictions" section. Deal? Speaking of my prognonsis for the upcoming week...
Titans V. Bills. Techinically, they are the same team. Both are long shot contenders with a good running and passing attacks. The Bills are a longer shot for the playoffs and Fred Jackson is still hurt. The Titans hope to grad that golden ring of the AFC South, but they have to win-out (at least it should be the goal) and hope that the TJ Yates era in Houston is what we think it will be. This is a serious-test for the Titans--do they want it, or don't they? The Bills still play tough, even though they have cooled off considerably from they 5-2 start. CK2K is the x-factor here--if he plays well in the mild conditions in upstate New York, the Titans win. But don't count out the Amish Rifle and co.--they are due for a win. But it won't be this week, Titans win in an offensive expolosion, 45-27.
Chiefs V. Bears. Tyler Palko vs. Caleb Hanie--the QB match-up we all wanted to see once the lockout ended, right? This one will be the battle of who fucks-it-up less. Both QB's did their teams in last week, but this week might be different. I think both these guys are decent back-ups--but like all back-ups, the rust needs to get knocked off. The Bears are used to having a turd burgeler under center--so I have confidence that they will adjust accordingly. The Chiefs will be battling for their playoff lives, so they will be up for this game. But the Bears are too good at home and Brian, Julius and Lance will muddy up Palko's helmet real good in a squeker, Bears win 21-17.
Falcons V. Toros. The Toros need to win the next two games to control their distiny--but I'm affraid they won't, making their Week 17 match-up against the Titans a potential AFC South championship game. The Falcons are looking to find consistancy in a wierd year for them. This Yates guys might get yanked at a certain point in this game in favor of the newly acquired Jake Delhomme, who will be knocking his post-forced retirement rust off in a game the Toros can't and won't win. 23-13
Colts V. Pats. The only reason I am calling this one is the Vegas line. The Pats are giving 20 points. You read that right. This is by far the biggest spread since the then-undeatfeated Pats took on the hapless Eagles in 2007, a game widdened by 23 1/2 points (Eagles covered and almost won the game in a final score of 31-28.) This game will cover as well, but the game will not be as close--unless Belichick shows mercy--which he may not, given that the Colts are such a fierce rival pre-2011. I think the Colts will play hard in this one (their Super Bowl?), but still lose by a couple of tuds, 24-10.
Bengals V. Steelers. This is the game that will make Andy Dalton's rookie season one of legend. Not only will his Stripes go into Steeltown and take one away from those mustardseeds--but this game will solidify his rookie-of-the-year ranking. His tough play and leadership will come into play (expect a John Elway-esque helicopter play in the endzone from my favorite NFL ginger in the 4th to tie). Then, Doolin' Dalton will drive the cats down the yard, to set up Mike Nugents 31-yard pooch to win it in OT, 26-23.
Packers V. Giants. The Giants have a long tradition of being the perfect season spoilers. In 1934, they beat my unbeaten Bears in the NFL championship. In 1998, they beat the 13-0 Denver Elways with Kent Graham.
Kent Graham=Ted Danson Doppelgänger
The Giants did it again, most famiously, against the Pats in Super Bowl XLII, in what most NFL scholars (mainly just Chuck Klosterman) beleieve to be the greatest loss in league history. But can they spoil the party again. The stars are lining up. The game is in New Jersey, the Giants are playing for their playoff lives (when aren't they in December and the Packers need to lose this game. Did we learn nothing from the '07 Pats? The '09 Colts did when Jim Caldwell pulled Manning in a rollover against the Jets. The Packers need to do the same, I'm affraid, or the injury issue will arise. That, coupled with the hype and buzz, another factor that the Pats tried to ignore. A loss would end the questions of an undefeated year and teh Packers could shift their focus to the postseason. Sometimes a loss is a good thing. Packers win, 38-17.
Lions V. Saints. This Suh thing might be the final nail in the coffin. The Lions kinda have a Raiders-vibe too them, loads of talent and zero discipline. This might be a top-down thing, seeing as Jim Schwartz flexed his WWE muscle in that handshake debacle. But I kinda like the Lions, they are scrappy and Stafford plays well through the pain. This just isn't their year. Plus, Drew Brees is a fireball these days and I think that he will challenge Rodgers down the stretch for the league's most valuable. Remember during the long and drawn-out dog days of the lockout summer, when the NFL Network showed the 100 top active players and Manning and Brady were 1-2? I think Brees and Rodgers have replaced that mantle in 3 short months.
Life is a SUPERBREES!
The McNabb era is over before it really began in Minnesota. I can't help but feel sorry for the dude, though. I always liked Donovan. He got a bum wrap in Phili from the get go:
He never fared well in Washington or Minnesota either because both teams thought they were getting instant offense by adding him to the fray. I'm afraid that he would have had more impact if he went to these teams in the mid-aughts--but he is too far into the twilight of his career to turn around offenses that always seem to be teetering on disaster. Bottom line: Donovan is a great quarterback who can make a difference as long as he has the weapons to help him flourish. Outside of "All-Day" in Minnesota, he didn't anything to work with in either team.
Now, the question arises--who will jump at the chance to get him. The Bears and Texans are the leaders, but the Texans resurrected Jake Delhomme earlier this week and adding McNabb might seem too desperate. But the Bears makes complete and total sense.
The Bears went all season without the drama that has plagued a lot of teams this year (see: Detroit Stompers...er, Lions)--but ever since Jay Cutler went down in the Charger game (I blame Knox's cleats for Cutler's thumb) weird things have happened. Mike Martz is being courted by UCLA and ASU to fill their head coach spots and Jay Cutler's engagement to that vapid reality show star is appartently back on. Things in the Windy are getting silly again. But I think McNabb's presence in the locker room could right this ship. And I'm sure he would leap at the chance to play for his hometown team to end his career. It just makes sense. That's why he'll end up in Houston.