1. Bill Belichick Not only did his team beat a quality Ravens squad, but Belichick was the only head coach in the league who didn't appear to wear something pink a hat, a ribbon, shoes, etc. to mark the NFL's Breast Cancer Awareness initiative. I always suspected Belichick is pro-cancer, but now this proves it. Sure, it's an abhorrent stance for a person to take. But I admire Belichick's courage in taking it. And, who knows, maybe I don't know the whole story. Perhaps he is very active in fighting cancer. I wouldn't be surprised to hear he regularly gives breast exams to suburban MILFs.
2. Rashard Mendenhall A week ago he was benched for not knowing his playbook. This week he was forced into action due to an injury to Willie Parker and rushed for 165 yards and two touchdowns. I can't say if he knows the plays now or just ran well through the wrong holes.
3. Detroit Lions Wasn't last week such an amazing rush of excitement and celebration? Way to keep it special. Winning more will only cheapen the experience. But if you keep playing like you did this week, you may get to cherish that memory for the rest of the year. Oh, by the way: you play the Steelers this Sunday. You won't beat them. So don't even try. Instead, maybe cancel practice this week and do some scrapbooking. Record those memories before you forget the details.
4. Evolution After reviewing a catch made by Mike Sims-Walker of the Jaguars in the end zone yesterday, the referee ruled it was a touchdown because Sims-Walker "got three feet down." Impressive. It wasn't long ago that receivers like Santonio Holmes were just sprouting third legs, and now they're big enough they can use them to run. What's next? Penis hands?
5. Eli Manning Manning left yesterday's game with a heel injury. But it's not serious. And you know what injuries mean, don't you? Band-Aids! SpongeBob Band-Aids! And a trip to the ice cream shop with mom and dad for a clown sundae to make the boo-boo tears go bye-byes. Yay!
1. People with cancer other than breast If you would like the NFL's support in your fight, you should really consider letting the cancer spread to your breasts. Think about it.
2. Logic The Baltimore Ravens were not happy with the officiating in New England. Said safety Ed Reed on a 4th-and-1 try in which Ravens RB Willis McGahee was stopped short: "When Willis had his fourth-down try, it probably wouldn't have been a first [down], but it probably should have been a little closer." Why must you rob the Ravens of quarter-yards of no consequence, officials? Do you have no shame? What if Willis McGahee finishes the season with 999.75 yards? That will be on you, refs.
3. Rich Gannon As the Cincinnati Bengals were driving for the winning score in overtime, CBS game "analyst" Rich Gannon warned them not to score too quickly lest they leave time on the clock for the Browns to score. Ha! What an idiot. Did you see how Gannon messed up there? He suggested the Browns could score! What a moron. (Also, NFL overtime is sudden death.)
4. Mark Sanchez He looked in over his head yesterday against the Saints with four turnovers, two of which were returned or recovered for touchdowns. It was also a bad day for Jets fans, whose erections fell incomplete and were returned to their pants.
5. Tom Brady Your former fellow team captain, Rodney Harrison, told you on national television to "take off the skirt." This is why someone as famous as you must be careful who you trust. You never should have told Harrison that Gisele makes you play dress up.
October 5, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
JaMarcus Russell throws it where only the defender can catch it
Oakland Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell uncorked a 25-yard laser in the second quarter yesterday just over the outstretched arms of tight end Zach Miller to a spot where only Texans linebacker Brian Cushing could catch it. Cushing, however, dropped it. "It was my mistake," said Cushing. "I just didn't expect him to throw it there. It was such a small window for the ball to get to me and Zach Miller was wide open. I should have been ready. It's JaMarcus Russell after all." Raiders head coach Tom Cable says he aims to harness his quarterback's abilities. "JaMarcus does things on the football field that I have never seen before," said Cable. "If I can just flip those to be good things instead of horribly bad things, we'll be golden."
They bled. They sweat. They gave it their all for 60 minutes.
And they lost by 18 points.
"At this level it all comes down to who wants it more," said Kentucky head coach Rich Brooks after his team lost 38-20 to No. 3 Alabama at home on Saturday. "And also who is the better team. Usually that last part of the cliche is left out for the sake of brevity. That's the thing with catchphrases and slogans make them too long and people tune out."
The Wildcats trailed Alabama only 7-6 after the first quarter, but things got out of hand after that.
"I think the biggest problem, outside of them being better than us, is that we noticeably wanted it more," said Kentucky quarterback Mike Hartline. "We should have paced ourselves. We were spent at the end of the first quarter from trying so hard and the mental exhaustion that comes with wanting something so intensely."
Hartline threw three interceptions on Saturday and his intended receivers say they wanted the ball more than the opponent covering them.
"But no matter how much I wanted it to stop happening, Mike kept throwing the ball into the hands of their defensive backs," said Kentucky wide receiver Randall Cobb.
And while Kentucky was dragging, the Crimson Tide were just starting to get into the game.
"Honestly, I didn't want to be out there at all today," said Alabama linebacker Eryk Anders. "Kentucky had way more intensity and I just wanted to be back home in my bed. Thankfully I was able to coast by on my superior athletic ability."
"I wasn't too happy with the effort," said Alabama head coach Nick Saban. "In fact, it was embarrassing. I was, however, very happy with the score and that's all that matters. I'll ride my team's laziness all the way to a national title if I have to."
Saban says he has developed a unique recruiting approach that he thinks has allowed his program to get a leg up on the likes of Kentucky.
"When I go to a kid's house, I ask him how much he wants it," said Saban. "I ask him if he wants it more than anyone else. Those are such important questions. But then I ask him if he's any good at football. If that one is a no, then I leave."
There are only a few days until the start of the MLB playoffs and SportsPickle is previewing each playoff team. Today: Colorado Rockies.
- - -
NL wildcard winner / Playoff seed: No. 4 / NLDS opponent: Philadelphia Phillies
The Colorado Rockies and their fans have gotten a lot of mileage out of "Rocktober." But I think they're limiting the use of ROCK in more words.
Here are some other possibilities, Rockies fans. Try them out!
Rockcident When a Rockies player gets hurt via groceries, an ATV or deer meat.
Playing cops and Rockers A euphemism for getting arrested for soliciting a really ugly prostitute a la Denny Neagle
Rocktopus The girlfriend of a Rockies player.
RocktoMom A former Rocktopus who has been knocked up.
Rocktogenarian A Rockies fan as old or older than Todd Helton.
Rocktogon The status of a young, star Rockies player who everyone knows will be gone one day when the team can no longer afford him. "Enjoy Matt Holliday now because he is Rocktogon."
Rocktion The practice of selling off players who are Rocktogon for whatever the team can get.
Rockward The annual ritual of switching the calendar over to November without a World Series title. "Rockward!"
October 4, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
Reds OF to miss the remainder of the season with an injury
The Cincinnati Reds announced today that outfielder Tyler Heppner will miss the remainder of the season with a wrist injury. "It's been that kind of season for us," said manager Dusty Baker. "We haven't gotten any breaks." Heppner tweaked his wrist in batting practice this morning. He is not expected to need surgery, but his season is over. "He needs to get tougher," said one anonymous source in the Reds front office. "This is not the kind of thing that should end a player's season. He's going to carry the reputation of a soft player now."
There are only a few days until the start of the MLB playoffs and SportsPickle is previewing each playoff team. Today: Boston Red Sox.
1:00 p.m. ET
Detroit at Chicago (-10)
Congratulations, Chicago you didn't get the Olympics, but you are getting the Detroit Lions. Not a bad trade really.
My pick: Chicago
Oakland at Houston (-8.5)
Stop staring, JaMarcus Russell. It's rude. Also, the defensive back read your eyes and intercepted your pass a good 30 seconds ago. You have to get off the field. Come on. Play is resuming.
My pick: Houston
Tampa Bay at Washington (-7.5)
What a tough stretch of the schedule for the Redskins. No, not that they've had the Rams, Lions and Buccaneers right in a row. Of course not. That's easy. I mean that their schedule includes the Redskins every week but they are the only team in the league who never gets to play them. That's too bad. Because the Redskins suck most of all. I bet even the Redskins could give him a game. Wait. Now I'm starting to get confused.
My pick: Washington
Seattle at Indianapolis (-10.5)
Matt Hasselbeck is back for the Seahawks this week. Last Sunday he was out with acute not-wanting-to-look-like-a-buffoon-by-wearing-those-ridiculous-jerseys.
My pick: Indianapolis
New York Giants at Kansas City (+8.5)
Every report I've seen this week about the Chiefs trading Tyler Thigpen to the Dolphins says that in return they received "an undisclosed 2010 draft pick." Not true. While the specific pick isn't yet known, the player will be terrible because he will have been drafted by the Chiefs. Steal by the Dolphins.
My pick: New York Giants
Baltimore at New England (-1.5)
This will be an interesting game to gauge two teams I don't think are as good as their records. Although, if they're both not as good as their records, I'm not going to learn anything from this game will I? Oh, well. I guess I'll just watch this game for entertainment purposes and hope they both lose.
My pick: New England
Cincinnati at Cleveland (+6)
The Bengals upset the Steelers last week giving Ben Roethlisberger his first-ever loss in Ohio. Interestingly, the Browns have never won in Ohio. Too bad they're based there.
My pick: Cincinnati
Tennessee at Jacksonville (+3)
Everyone wants to know what's wrong with the Titans. Ooh! Ooh! Ooh-ooh! Pick me! Pick me! Yes, I just wanted to say that they were never all that good in the first place. Okay, thanks for calling on me. Feel free to continue with your lesson.
My pick: Jacksonville (and to win)
4:05 p.m. ET
Buffalo at Miami (+1)
Since Dan Marino retired after the 1999 season, the Dolphins starting quarterbacks have been Jay Fiedler (5 years), A.J. Feeley (1 year), Gus Frerotte (1 year), Joey Harrington (1 year), Cleo Lemon (1 year) and Chad Pennington (1 year). And now it's Chad Henne's job. What does this tell us? That five different quarterbacks have failed to fill Jay Fiedler's shoes. Wow.
My pick: Miami (and to win)
New York Jets at New Orleans (-7)
This trip to New Orleans is going to get a bit awkward when love-struck members of the New York media start asking Rex Ryan to show them his tits.
My pick: New York Jets
Dallas at Denver (+3)
Josh McDaniels has silenced his critics. Apparently his critics weren't smart enough to look at the Broncos' schedule and see that they opened with the Bengals, Browns and Raiders. Do your research, critics!
My pick: Dallas
St. Louis at San Francisco (-9.5)
Before we all jump on San Francisco's bandwagon, let's remember that their quarterback is still Shaun Hill. Plus, this is San Francisco. That's not a bandwagon. It's a Gay Pride float.
My pick: San Francisco
8:20 p.m. ET
San Diego at Pittsburgh (-6.5)
In the past week, Steelers 2008 2nd Round draft pick Limas Sweed dropped a game-winning touchdown pass and was benched. And 2008 1st Round draft pick Rashard Mendenhall was benched for not knowing any plays or his assignments. This is part of the reason why players love playing for Mike Tomlin so much. None of his crappy draft picks will ever take your job.
My pick: San Diego
Green Bay at Minnesota (-3)
We are the person in the wood chipper. Brett Favre is the tall guy. And Aaron Rodgers can be Frances McDormand.
My pick: Minnesota
Byes: Arizona, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Carolina
There are only a few days until the start of the MLB playoffs and SportsPickle is previewing each playoff team. Today: Philadelphia Phillies.
October 2, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
Teams preemptively banning players from using Google Wave
"I don't really know what this Google Wave is," says NBA commissioner David Stern. "But it sounds like some unholy combination of blogging, Facebook and Twitter. So, basically, the worst thing ever. I can't have our players communicating without a filter to the outside world. Banned." Google Wave, a cross-platform, web-based communication tool that is currently in beta testing, is the talk of the Internet and the greatest fear of coaches and league executives. "To me Google Wave sounds like change," says Texas Tech head football coach Mike Leach. "And i fear change. At least any change that is not within the structure of the spread offense." But some others disagree. "I can't wait to get my hands on it," says USC head football coach Pete Carroll. "I don't know what the hell it is, but I bet it's pretty cool. If it's fun enough, I'll let my players screw around with it during games."
October 2, 2009 Column
Tweet of the Week
Tweet of the Week
From @terrellowens AKA Buffalo Bills wide receiver Terrell Owens