Allow me a quick story before we get to the NFL.
It is a sad story for the man involved, but hilarious for everyone else. I believe that is the difference between tragedy and comedy, no? When it happens to you it's a tragedy; when it happens to someone else it's comedy.
Anyway, around 10 am yesterday morning a friend of mine calls to ask a favor. I’m at the gym at the time so I ignore the call and call him when I get back to my truck.
‘Dude! I’m heading to the game today! In fact, right now. I’m in the car, heading for some beers and burgers!’
He means, of course, the Patriots game. In a related weather note, it’s pouring out and 35 degrees. The absolute last place on earth I want to be is anywhere outside. I wish him luck before he gets to the point. He always has some reason for calling other than to pass along news.
‘I need you to make a change on my fantasy team when you get home.’
Without asking what the change was, I told him I would call once I was connected. We’re in the same league, so he just needed to let me know his password. I get home, call him and login as him.
‘What change do you want?’
He tells me and I pause. ‘Really? You sure?’
‘Absolutely! There is now way he has a good day in this weather. And my backup is playing in San Diego in 80 degree perfect conditions tomorrow night.’
‘Dude, I don’t know. The Titans officially suck this year. Their secondary is horrible so the Patriots should be throwing short all day.’
‘No, this is what I want.’
So I make the change. To the bench goes Tom Brady with Kyle Orton taking his starting spot.
When I submit the changes I tell him, ‘You realize you’ll be cursing every time Brady throws a touchdown today?’
‘I know, right! He won’t throw that many today, though. Weather is way too shitty for that.’
Brady’s line: 29-34, 380 yards, 6 TDs
My post game text: ‘I don’t want to hear any more complaints about you losing close games when you make moves like this.’
As I got no response back I assume he jumped off the top of Gillette Stadium by the third quarter.
Onto the games:
- While the Saints looked dominant against the Giants, I have a question. Are we sure this Giants team is any good? Look at who they played heading into Week 6: Redskins, Cowboys, Buccaneers, Chiefs, Raiders. If we suspect the Cowboys of sucking (and we do!) then the Giants have had the easiest opening five weeks of any team in the league.
- That said the Saints looked scary good yesterday. They took apart a (supposedly) very good defense and made it look easy. Note to every TV announcer everywhere - the Giants didn’t trade Jeremy Shockey because they thought he was talentless; they traded him because of his lack of work ethic and tendency to take games off. He’s still guilty of that in New Orleans, so let’s not pretend Shockey should be offended the Giants shipped him out of town. It was good for both of them.
- After the Vikings racked up 466 yards we can safely say this Ravens defense is not nearly as good as it has been in previous years. Ryan is gone as coordinator and he took linebacker Bart Scott with him. Maybe it’s a work in progress, but you can move the ball pretty well against them at the moment.
- Viking fans, I’m still not convinced your team is for real. Keep in mind you nearly blew a very comfortable lead to a mediocre team at home. Yesterday’s win shouldn’t inspire confidence. If anything, Flacco and Rice may have inadvertently set the stage on how to beat your team. Stay tuned on that one.
- Coming up on week 7 and I still don’t know what to make of this Texans team.
- The Steelers – Browns game was the definition of ugly. Pittsburgh has a tendency to play down to their opponents. Not the quality you’re looking for in a defending champ.
- Finally, the Carolina coaches have figured out how to win. Keep the ball out of Delhomme’s hands. He only threw it 17 times (yet still threw 2 INTs) while handing it off to Williams and Stewart a whopping 47 times. When you’re quarterback is a major weak link and you have a dominating running game, perhaps you should stress the running game. Just a thought.
- While we’re here, there is a painful part of watching the Red Zone channel when you’re a fantasy participant. It tends to go like this: One of your starters is running amok, bouncing off tacklers, mere yards from a touchdown. You get to your feet and start cheering. You congratulate yourself on starting a sleeper and having it pay off. Right at this cocky, self congratulatory part is where your guy fumbles the ball. Talking to you, Stewart. I saw that and was not happy. He did make up for it with a good game, but watching things like that live is unpleasant. This can also occur when your guy scores a touchdown only to hear ‘There is a flag on the field!’
- There were two war of attrition games I need to mention. The Jets and Bills overtime session was a comedy of errors. It was so bad that, after yet another false start penalty, the color guy (not sure who it was) said ‘Does either team want to win this game?’
The second was the Chiefs at Redskins which was just as bad as everyone anticipated. Washington seems to be regressing before our eyes and Zorn’s post game press conference was bizarre and embarrassing. He kept telling everyone it was on his shoulders and he needed to ‘re-evaluate everything’, but spoke in a dry, emotionless voice that was kind of creepy. It was like he was talking at his own funeral and expected Dan Snyder to come bursting in to fire him on the spot. If I was sure he had any human feelings I would have felt bad for Zorn.
- Oh, and Buffalo fans, I thought Trent Edwards was bad until I witnessed the indecisive and scrambling spectacle that is Ryan Fitzpatrick. My apologies for those choices. Where did JP Losman go?
- In a game I didn’t watch and in which nothing interesting happened, Atlanta beat Chicago. Thought you might be interested even though nobody else seems to be.
- The single most embarrassing loss of the year: Oakland 13 – Philadelphia 9. The Eagles, who boast two dynamic running backs in Brian Westbrook and LeSean McCoy, rushed 14 times.
- The Arizona Cardinals sure look like they got the bounce in their step back after the bye week. Seattle was out of the game before their offense touched the ball.
- Around 6:30 last night, I was watching television and laughing out loud for several minutes. Wifey comes around to see what it is I’m watching, only it’s the Patriots game. She gives me the confused look I usually get from her and I have to explain ‘This Titans team is so bad it’s funny. Watch this.’ I point to the replay of Vince Young trying to do…well, I’m not sure what he was trying to do, but he wound up falling down, losing the ball, while he and another team mate stumbled around in the snow trying to get it back. All of this happened when there wasn’t one Patriot player in a five yard radius of either of them.
Tennessee should really hire Jeff Fisher back to coach this team.
Holy Shit Stat of the Week #1: New England threw for 426 yards. Tennessee threw for negative 7 yards.
Holy Shit Stat of the Week #2: In 9 minutes and 56 seconds, Tom Brady threw five touchdown passes.
Holy Shit Stat of the Week #3: New Orleans scored 7 touchdowns, rushed for 133 yards, passed for 360 yards, and put up nearly 500 total yards against the number one ranked defense heading into yesterday’s game.
Holy Shit Stat of the Week #4: During an 8 play sequence, the Steelers and Browns combined to turn the ball over 5 times.
Holy Shit Stat of the Week #5: Mark Sanchez had a quarterback rating of 8.3. And, no, I didn’t miss a number.
Random Monday Night Prediction: Denver’s defense is exposed and tonight’s game turns into a shootout. Chargers win 35-31.
Today’s distraction: A sure sign the John and Kate phenomenon of using your kids to become famous has gone too far. As an aside, why is everyone calling this kid ‘The Balloon Boy’ when he was never actually in the balloon. Can’t we just call him ‘Future Drug Dealer’?