1:00 p.m. ET
Washington at Atlanta (-10)
Thanks to a bye week, Jim Zorn has had two weeks to prepare for the Falcons. So yeah, I guess he's done nothing for two weeks.
My pick: Atlanta
Arizona at Chicago (-3)
Many thought the Bears would contend for a Super Bowl this season with Jay Cutler. They're not even close to that level. Lovie Smith, you're on the hot seat. (Note: his expression changed from this, to this after I put him on the hot seat. I think he got the message. I think. Or maybe he just thought of a really hilarious story. Or someone close to him died. Hard to tell with that guy.)
My pick: Arizona (and to win)
Baltimore at Cincinnati (+3)
Hey, I'll admit that I didn't have this game circled on my calendar at the beginning of the season. But that's partly because who uses a calendar anymore? I mean, really? Sure, I underestimated the Bengals. But you you still use a calendar. Dork.
My pick: Baltimore
Houston at Indianapolis (-9)
Bad news for the Colts: cornerback Marlin Jackson is out for the rest of the season with an injury. Good news for the Colts: it seems they have another defensive back with characteristics similar to the great Bob Sanders.
My pick: Houston
Miami at New England (-10.5)
Bill Belichick is going to be extra motivated to stop the Dolphins. Why? The man absolutely hates wildcats. Wildcats remind him of cougars. And cougars turn down his advances in favor of younger men.
My pick: Miami
Green Bay at Tampa Bay (+9.5)
You have to feel bad for Aaron Rodgers. I bet sometimes he wishes that he got drafted by the other Bay. Then all he'd have to worry about is Brad Johnson or Trent Dilfer or Vinny Testaverde trying to seek revenge against his team. And those guys suck. Although, to their credit, they could all start right now for the Buccaneers.
My pick: Green Bay***
Kansas City at Jacksonville (-6.5)
Often I make fun of the Jaguars for their inability to draw fans and for the tarped-off sections of their stadium. But, really, in this case the Jaguars in a game against the Chiefs I say tarp over the entire top of the stadium and save us all from seeing this.
My pick: Jacksonville
4:05 p.m. ET
Detroit at Seattle (-10)
What's more humiliating: that Lions fans wear bags on their heads? Or that the Seahawks marketing department probably thinks that's possibly a great look for an alternate helmet. "Hmmm a rectangular helmet made of paper a splash of radioactive green KA-CHING!"
My pick: Seattle
Carolina at New Orleans (-13)
Jake Delhomme is from New Orleans. This game is kind of like when a dog runs away from home, gets hit by a car and then hobbles back to his front door to die. In this analogy, consider Delhomme's turnovers in this game as the dying dog's loss of its bowels.
My pick: New Orleans
4:15 p.m. ET
San Diego at New York Giants (-4.5)
People get on Philip Rivers because, unlike fellow 2004 draft class members Ben Roethlisberger and Eli Manning, he has yet to quarterback his team to a Super Bowl. But consider this: the guy drafted two spots ahead of him, Robert Gallery, has yet to win a game. Oh, but you say: "Robert Gallery isn't a quarterback." Maybe not. But he has the same body type of Oakland's quarterback, so what's his excuse?
My pick: San Diego
Tennessee at San Francisco (-4)
I think Jeff Fisher really wants to get fired. Last night he showed up at a benefit for the charity Tiny Hands Across America in an Alex Smith jersey.
My pick: San Francisco
8:20 p.m. ET
Dallas at Philadelphia (-3)
This Philly crowd should be especially cantankerous following the Phillies loss. But they're going to need to step up their game to get noticed. Let's see, they've booed Santa. (Although that one has an asterisk because he was drunk.) They've cheered when Michael Irvin was possibly paralyzed. What can top those? Ooh! I know, booing a moment of silence. The gauntlet has been thrown down, Philly. Disappoint me.
My pick: Philadelphia
Pittsburgh at Denver (+3)
Steelers safety Ryan Clark could die if he plays at altitude because he has sickle cell trait. But he has been cleared by team doctors to play. I mean, it's the 6-1 Broncos. On Monday night. Big games need storylines.
My pick: Pittsburgh
The Eagles practiced this tackling technique all season with defensive coordinator Paul Bearer.
Picture Beer Football Uniform
She's more of a Busch girl.
Yes, the portly Boston Celtics backup says he plans to play in the NFL one day.
"I will try it," Davistold reporters. "When I become an All-Star in the NBA, when I become a great player in the NBA, then I'll try football. One of my dreams has always been to play football."
So there's no definite timeline there, outside of a plane carrying all the top 25 or 30 frontline players in the NBA has to first go down so Davis can make the All-Star team. But when that happens IT'S NFL TIME!
And this is what the NFL will get:
You know, that was actually pretty good.
Let's not let Boston fans get wind of this. They'll become even more unbearable. "We ahh so fackin good at fackin football, even owah beloved Celtics could beat yah football team full uh fackin queeahs."
The life of a modern professional athlete seems glamorous. Money, fame, women. But it's also very easy to shoot yourself.
If you are a professional athlete and suddenly find yourself the victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound like Plaxico Burress or Vicente Padilla, what should you do?
1. Consider shooting someone else. You've just shot yourself. You're probably in a panic. And a great deal of pain. And quite embarrassed, too. I mean, you shot yourself. Your thoughts will be going a million miles an hour. But you need to calm down for a second and think. Is your gun still beside you? Yes. Is there anyone else near you? If so, shoot them, too. Really. Do it. Consider the facts: Plaxico Burress is imprisoned for shooting himself. Bob Knight and Dick Cheney? Both free. And they shot other people while "hunting." The message is clear: it's far better to "accidentally" shoot someone else than it is to accidentally shoot yourself. Just tell the cops that you saw a pheasant run behind your victim and you'll be golden.
2. Collect evidence. Not for some kind of cover up. You have nothing to hide. You were hunting, right?! (By the way, in case you don't know and in case someone asks, a pheasant is a medium-sized game bird.) No, you need evidence for eBay. Can you imagine if Plaxico Burress had auctioned off swatches of his blood-soaked sweat pants? He would have made a fortune. And then he could have afforded to hire a much better attorney than the one that he had.
3. Get to the hospital Shooting yourself is serious. It's no laughing matter. Well, it is a laughing matter. In fact, it's kind of hilarious. But only for everyone else. Not you. Anyway, at the hospital you'll want to get fixed up. And do your best to get the doctor to prescribe you some steroids for "muscle regeneration" in the limb you shot. Your league won't suspend you for steroids use if they've been prescribed by a doctor. This gunshot just might give your career new life! Well done!
4. Apply for a gun license Yeah, I'm just going to assume you didn't have one. But you're going to want to be able to produce a gun license when the cops show up. A little bribery should get you one. The person at the licensing office is a state employee. They make crap money. A few thousand in cash should be enough for them to backdate your license. If they really drive a hard bargain, offer the piece of clothing that shows the bullet hole. That would have earned the most on eBay.
5. Call your agent Agents don't just help you negotiate your contract. They provide other services, too. Remember that time he disposed of that dead prostitute for you? Really, you don't? It was in 2003 after the first round of the playoffs, you were at the Tropicana, she got mouthy and oh, okay,now you remember. Yeah, that dead prostitute. Anyway, agents can be a big help in situations like this.
6. Go public Okay. All of your bases are covered. It's time to leak the story to the press. Who is the most friendly reporter that you know? No, it's not necessarily that one female reporter who clearly wants to hook up. What about the team beat writer who cheats on his wife during every road trip? Yeah, he's your guy. Call him, tell him what happened, hint that you know about his extramarital activities, and then say: "I know you'll do the right thing with this story." In tomorrow's paper you're going to be portrayed as the hero in an epic gun battle for the very survival of freedom.
7. Start a charity Charitable people, even charitable people who are packing heat, are loved by the general public. So a few days out from the incident, once you have stopped bleeding completely, you'll want to hold a press conference. At the end of the press conference, announce that you are starting a charity to help athletes who are victims of gun violence. Specifically, from their own guns. It will be a small charity to start. But, trust me, the numbers of those in need will continue to grow rapidly. Athletes are getting bigger, not smarter.
The New Orleans Saints won again on Monday night, running their record to a league-best 7-0 and giving them a commanding lead in the AFC South. Despite that, the team remains determined to stay humble, saying they have a lot of room for improvement and even referring to themselves as the “worst team ever.”
“7-0 doesn’t mean anything if you don’t win the Super Bowl,” said quarterback Drew Brees after the game. “And we haven’t won the Super Bowl yet. We haven’t won anything yet. We barely even squeaked out this Monday night win against the Falcons. In fact, I will go so far as to say we are the worst team ever. If we win another game this season I will be shocked.”
Brees refused to acknowledge the stellar play of the offense, calling it “meaningless.”
“The offense? You want me to talk about the offense?” Brees asked one reporter. “Yea, we’ve scored a lot of points so far. Big deal. Defense wins championships. And when it comes to offense, the only number that matters is how many Super Bowl rings you have and right now that number is a big, fat zero. God, I’m so embarrassed. We should all be ashamed of ourselves.”
Coach Sean Payton acknowledges that 7-0 “is a pretty good place to be” but cautioned against overconfidence, saying that the Saints are just another deeply flawed team scratching and clawing for a playoff spot.
“7-0 is better than 0-7,” said Payton. “But this is a long season and you don’t win Super Bowls in November. You win them in February. Everything up until February is completely meaningless.”
Immediately following the victory over the Falcons, coach Payton told his team to enjoy the victory tonight, but be prepared for a hard week of practice and a tough opponent next Sunday in the Carolina Panthers.
“Pat yourselves on the back. You’re 7-0,” Payton said to a roomful of cheers. “But we haven’t done anything yet. We haven’t won a Super Bowl. We haven’t won the conference, division or wild card. We’re nothing. I spit on our accomplishments. See? I just spit all over this game ball, and you know who’s going to get it? Nobody, because you all suck. I’m going to give it to the retarded ball boy because he’s more worthy than you. And better at football, too.”
Payton then stormed out of the room, leaving his team in stunned silence.
“That was a bad one,” said receiver Devery Henderson. “Coach is really trying to keep us humble right now, trying to show us that we still have a lot of work to do. And of course he’s right. We still have a lot of work to do and – say it with me now – we haven’t accomplished anything yet. Yes, you’ve heard this one before, right? I don’t even know why you guys bother talking to all of us. You really just need to get one quote and then attribute it to everyone on the team.”
AVOID: Ryan Moats, RB, Texans Houston running back Steve Slaton fumbled his first carry of the day on Sunday against the Bills. That turnover put Slaton, a fumble machine this year, on the bench and Moats in the backfield. Moats responded with 151 total yards and three touchdowns. So jump on Moats, right? Wrong. Moats is a career journeyman for a reason. He's not about to become a superstar. And Slaton is expected to get the majority of the carries again soon, maybe even this week. If that happens, Moats won't be on the field. Also, if Slaton sees more action, you should really grab Houston's fullback or even Matt Schaub if he's available. They have the best chance of picking up Slaton's fumbles and advancing them for positive gains.
1. Green Bay You lost the battle, but won the war. By booing Brett Favre on his return to your fair hamlet, you struck a blow against the Cult of Favre and forced the NFL media to acknowledge there are some who do not love the be-stubbled man-child. Yesterday, we were all Green Bayers. (Green Bayians? Green Bayites? Fat? Lactose-tolerant? Whatever.) Well done.
2. Rams-Lions Only one of these horrible teams could win, but they both played hard yesterday. In fact, I think it was the hardest-hitting game of the day. Probably because the players were trying to kill themselves.
3. Eli Manning You were horrible on the field, but you learned a valuable lesson: eat too much Halloween candy the night before a big game, get a bellyache and play terribly.
4. gravity Still as strong as ever. Good to see that some things never change.
5. Jim Zorn You proved your worth this week. You didn't have a game, yet you really did nothing different this Sunday than you do any other Sunday: you basically just relaxed. Redskins management will notice your consistency and dedication and reward you with a contract extension.
1. NFL rookies With 84 receiving yards and a touchdown on Sunday, as well as a several long kick returns, Minnesota's Percy Harvin is running away with the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. That's nothing to be ashamed of. Harvin is a good player. But here's where the shame comes in. Percy Harvin's given name is William Percival Harvin III. Ha-ha, rookies. You're losing to the kid you used to shove in his locker.
2. The ladies Tom Cable is knocking you around. (Reportedly.) That's bad. Almost as bad: You ladies are so desperate that you're dating Tom Cable. What the? Come on, ladies. You're better than that.
3. Adrian Peterson Peterson had a good game yesterday. 97 yards rushing. But it wasn't anything remarkable. Only 3.9 yards per carry. It was his second consecutive game averaging less than four yards. In fact, in Minnesota's eight games this season, Peterson has cracked 100 yards only twice. He's on pace for 1,568 yards half of the 3,000 yards some predicted for him. Peterson is obviously one of the best in the game. But he's not the "Purple Jesus" (as dubbed by Drew Magary). Maybe Purple Pope. Or Purple Associate Pastor.
4. Rex Ryan After a 3-0 start, the Jets have lost four of five, including games at home to the Bills and Dolphins. Might want to help yourself to those complimentary sideline hot dogs while you can, Rex. You may not have a job for long. Or, worse, you could follow in this next guy's footsteps and end up in Cleveland.
5. Eric Mangini This guy is clueless. And not just when it comes to football. So Derek Anderson obviously has naked pictures of you, Mangini, and that's why you keep playing him. But here's the thing you somehow aren't getting about blackmail. People actually have to want to look at those pictures. Have you seen yourself? No one wants to see you naked. You are disgusting. Just a depressing tub of a man. So stop worrying about the photos and play Brady Quinn. Or Joshua Cribbs. Or a plant. Or just have the center snap the ball backwards onto the ground and then dive on it for a five-yard loss every play. Just don't let Derek Anderson on the field ever again.
NFL.com and FoxSports.com reported more than 8 million unique streams of their "Favre Cam" the online video feed of Brett Favre's every move during Sunday's Vikings-Packers game. But it was hours after the game ended that Favre Cam got its biggest traffic.
Fans who kept the feed running after the game ended noticed that the camera kept rolling on Favre even after he left the field, following him into the locker room, the shower, the postgame press conference, the team plane, his car on the ride home, and then eventually into his wife.
"I didn't expect that kind of access," said Vikings fan Kurt Lehman, who was glued to his computer during the Favre's lovemaking. "People were laughing at this Favre Cam concept when it was first announced. But they're not laughing now. For the first time in history, someone managed to combine two things millions of males love: sports and porn. And I commend NFL.com and FoxSports.com for doing it. It's an amazing achievement."
Traffic numbers for Favre Cam grew during the game but then dropped off dramatically after action ended. Less than a thousand were still watching when Favre got home and went upstairs. But when the sex began, those numbers multiplied as the original viewers quickly spread the word. Ten minutes later, as Favre finished with a clutch, late-coitus performance that brought his wife to orgasm, some 30 million were watching an Internet record for a single video stream.
Fox Sports CEO David Hill said he was pleased with the traffic numbers.
"This is all that we could have hoped for and more," he said. "But we're still working out the kinks. Ideally, we want to make it a profitable venture, where the viewer has his or her credit card charged to watch Favre have sex or use the bathroom. We can't give away this kind of stuff for free."
No matter the future, the production was a milestone for fan access.
"I've never seen anything like it," said former NFL broadcaster John Madden. "It was so easy to feel like you were there in the room with him. For example, I imagined I was his wife."
Favre, ever the showman, played to the camera pumping his fists or throwing his arms in the air when things were going especially well.
"He was like a kid in there," said Bears fan Bill Landry. "He made a lot of mistakes, yes. But he had so much enthusiasm. You could tell he really loved what he was doing. And while I'm not a Favre fan, I found myself rooting for him to come."