Tag Archives: Professional Football

Super Bowl LV Post Mortem: A Love(?) Story

Introduction

No other title in the history of this web page matches as well as Super Bowl LV Post Mortem. Hell, I needed almost a week to mourn the loss. Thank you for your patience during this radio silence. I promise next week will be back to normal. I plan on finally finishing the comics from this month and either playing D&D with the family or doing the new MTG set review.

RIP in pepperonis my excitement about the National Football League.

Well, Tom Brady won….again. He looked flawless…again. In all honesty, I fully expected the Bucs to win. As I texted Chris when I heard the news, “Paranoia is setting in. The entire Chefs offensive line is backups.” He replied with a story from WEEI that said half of the team might have COVID after getting hair cuts. That turned out to be untrue. Nevertheless, Tom Brady and his deal with the devil endures.

And, still, this outcome dilutes my anticipation of next season. Sure, you could make the argument that I should be anticipating the revenge and redemption story of Patrick Mahomes. Sorry, I’m just not that kind of fan. I watch football at this stage in my life because I find it fun and I find no joy in Tom Brady curb stomping Mudville out of existence. In the interest of getting back into the habit of posting, let’s do this Super Bowl LV Post Mortem.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Instead of wallowing in the swamp that is my indifference towards what others call greatness (Look, I admit, he’s great. It’s also boring.), I will focus on the positive. An impossible task? As a great man once said, “You underestimate my power.”

Granted, that didn’t work out so well for him. Perhaps I should choose my allegiances more carefully.

If we go back to my preview article about the Bucs, I listed two people that I’d be happy for if they won. Granted, I did write that article on a high that Kansas City was going to thoroughly eviscerate Tampa Bay. Now that I have to face the reality, do I still feel the same?

Sure, I picked Gronkenstein mostly as a lark. But, I admit that I actually feel good for the old lunk. I can’t explain my sudden change of heart that doesn’t extend to The Golden Boy. Oh well, best to not analyze it. Just wallow in my hatred. Avoidance is a healthy way to deal with our problems. Speaking of avoidance…

I’m extremely happy for Bruce Arians. Again, I say, the Steelers made the wrong decision in picking Ben over him. This extremely limited data point proves me right on that point. Congratulations to Mr. Arians. He deserves this and if any coach could get me to feel even slightly good about a Mahomes loss.

Kansas City Chiefs

And, so, we congratulate the Buccaneers on winning the Super Bowl. It’s just too bad that they had to win because the other team forfeited the game. Avoidance and denial. Two healthy coping mechanisms for sure. Though, to be honest, a forfeit comes close to the truth. I will say one thing about the Chiefs. Bill Maher made the point by saying, “Somehow this team is still called the Chiefs. Washington doesn’t even have a name. They’re literally just ‘Team’, but these guys get to keep Chiefs for some reason.” I guess love for Patrick Mahomes blinds me to the blatant racism of this team name.

The Verdict

Growing up, the Super Bowl always sucked. Most of the time, the NFC won in convincing fashion. Tom Brady changed all of that. Nearly every game he played in was exciting and decided by a field goal or less. For a while, I enjoyed that change of pace. Little did I know that I’d be enjoying that change of pace for over 2 decades. Time for some new blood. Hopefully this is a one time thing and I can find a reason to look forward to next season.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

We Love Super Bowl LV: Kansas City

Introduction

After yesterday’s awkward attempt to find good things about Tom Brady winning another Super Bowl, I present our preview of Super Bowl LV: Kansas City. Unlike a few years ago, I have an actual rooting interest in this game. To be perfectly honest, it might be quicker to list the reasons I don’t want Kansas City to win this game.

Because there are this many…

So, in the interest of finishing this article before the game starts, I will keep it under five. Just off the top of my head, I have three, so once I get writing, to stay consistent with yesterday’s article, I will stick to those three. Let’s explore, then, my top three reasons we love Super Bowl LV: Kansas City.

Travis Kelce

I never concerned myself much with Kelce. Occasionally, I picked him for my daily fantasy lineup. Usually, I won money in those instances. I guess that says something about the dehumanizing nature of professional sports. Maybe I just don’t have the time to keep track of my family, students, and also over 1600 NFL players. Hell, I barely even know all of the players on the Steelers and they’re supposedly my favorite team.

Editor’s Note: I stopped writing about here. Then, I went for a snow shoe with my wife. After, I cooked lunch and dinner while watching our Super (Heroes, not Bowl) marathon. And, so, it is that I’m finishing this article after the fact. I have to admit. It’s a bit depressing all things considered.

Andy Reid

I gave Andy Reid a ton of crap in the past. And, with good reason. The guy never met a clock management situation that he didn’t screw up. Then, something happened. That something isn’t just Patrick Mahomes. Granted, getting Patrick Mahomes helped greatly.

But, Reid just sort of started going for it. He ignored the tendencies that were holding him back and blew the lid off of the NFL. The league is a copycat league and so many coaches are now going for it on fourth down. Sure, you might argue this stems from Belichick and in some ways, I agree with that assessment. But, it’s taken a giant teddy bear like Andy Reid and his genius offensive coordinator, Eric Bieniemy, to make the moves more mainstream. There’s only one person I will feel more happy for than Andy Reid if the Chiefs win this game.

Patrick Mahomes

He already captured the league’s imagination and adoration. He won both a regular season and a Super Bowl MVP. And, he’s only 25 years old. A second consecutive championship cements him as one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game.

Did I mention that he’s only 25 years old? I may hold back my love and enjoyment of watching Josh Allen or Tua play. That has never been the case with Patrick Mahomes. He just makes football fun again for me. That’s been sorely missing for the last 15 years or so. The Chiefs truly can represent a seismic shift in the way football is played. Their 25 year old starting quarterback is at the helm of all that.

The Verdict

Apologies that I didn’t get this Super Bowl LV: Kansas City preview out before the game. I wanted so badly to finish it and meet that deadline. Instead, I have to waltz in with my tail between my legs confident in the fact that I was completely wrong about this game. Well, not completely wrong. I did text Chris a few days ago that my paranoia ran rampant at the news that Kansas City’s entire offensive line was backups. Like I just texted him, “Football is so unforgiving because it is only one game.” Oh well, Mahomes is 25 and hopefully this loss gives him some inspiration to come out and kick butt next year.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Conference Championships 2021 Post MOrtem: A Love(?) Story

Introduction

Sorry that I’m a day late on this NFL Conference Championships 2021 post mortem article. I was busy simulating for my epic 70 year run of Super Bowl LV: As It Should Have Been. Actually, I don’t own the teams for this year yet to be able to simulate the games yet. They won’t be released for another couple of months at the earliest.

In all honesty, I’ve just been slacking lately.

But, I bring you my take on the fallout from the games this past weekend. Spoiler alert: I liked one outcome. However, I hated the other in every way possible. Instead of dwelling on the games themselves, which we all watched, allow me to reflect on how the results may have affected each team. I realize that may be unorthodox.

What are we if not unorthodox around here. I just try to find those forgotten or lost topics to write about. With so much content out there, especially in sports, that can be difficult. Nevertheless, 6 years of a web page that reaches about a dozen people at a time proves that I do not give up easily. Join me, now, for the NFL Conference Championships 2021 post mortem.

Green Bay Packers – Wither Aaron Rodgers?

Not my terrible photoshop, but I happened to be in my Simpsons crapposting group on Facebook and this one popped up.

Poor Aaron Rodgers. I mentioned in the previous two articles that he has thrown less than 100 interceptions in his career. This season, he again made a compelling case as the MVP. And yet, in the aftermath of this weekend’s game, the less imaginative members of sports media saddled him with the “can’t win the big one” label.

Yes, the Packers lost the game with him. Yes, that makes them 1-4 in conference championships with him as their. Forget for a minute that wins and losses are not a quarterback stat. Football is the ultimate team game until a quarterback has an unfavorable record. Then, all of a sudden, he’s a choker and “can’t win the big one”. So stupid.

Tampa Bay got Tom Brady and then basically sold their future for now. They got Leonard Fournette, a good receiving corp and offensive line, Bruce Arians as coach, and one of the best defenses. Kansas City reloaded after Hunt went to Cleveland. Hell, even Buffalo got Stephon Diggs to help Josh Allen. Aaron Rodgers has the other Aaron, a receiving corp that drops ball after ball, and a suspect defense made even more so by a cornerback whose kink is apparently getting beat like a drum every other play.

Chris accused me of “Brady hate” during our text exchange during the game. More on that later. The whole game, I just kept thinking how much this sucks for Rodgers. I hope he gets another chance to drag this corpse of a team up the mountain and shut everyone up. Oh, I forgot to mention earlier. You’re the coach of a team down 8 with about 2 minutes to go. What do you do? Oh, you’re kicking a field goal. Surely, you have the trickiest onside kick planned, right? Right? RIGHT?!

Buffalo Bills – Young Coaches Got Schooled

Bills fans are adorably naive.

I quietly rode the Josh Allen bandwagon last year. He looked to be improving. However, I didn’t want to come out as a full Josh Allen fan. I’ve been burned before. Remember Kordell Stewart? I bought too many shares of that stock just before it tanked. The jury on Tua in the NFL is still out, but his college career is enough for me to hang my hat on. Therefore, unless your name is Patrick F. Mahomes, I reserve the right to be, uh, reserved in my adoration.

Even though I wanted to watch this game more than any other game so far this season, I didn’t. I tuned in to the Gamecast and saw KC was up 21-9. Texted Chris, “Well, at least something is going according to plan.” He agreed. I “watched” the Gamecast for a bit more and went to bed confident in the Chefs’ victory.

So, not having seen the game, I can’t comment with 100% accuracy. I will, instead, report from one of the various articles I’ve read in the past week. It looked to me like the two losing teams simply got outcoached. Yes, I realize that seems hypocritical when I just said the team wins and loses and that it can’t be blamed on one person. Nevertheless, the coach (especially in the NFL) has much of the power and decision making capacity.

Think of it like a game of Magic the Gathering (what’s this, gaming content?). Now, granted, football players are more than simply pieces of cardboard. But, stick with me for this possibly overwrought metaphor. The decisions that you make (right or wrong) add up over the game and one costly mistake can lose you the game. The point is the Bills will be back and I’m fully on the Josh Allen bandwagon now.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Oh, God, Not This Again

Yes, much of what I’ve said about Tom Brady should not be published on a fan friendly web page. Allow me to explain.

I already said that Chris accused me of Brady hate. He said this in response to my preview article where I said that I don’t hate Brady as a football player or a person. I assure you, all of that is true. Then again, by simply needing to assure you, I may have already exposed my guilt. So, what’s the deal? Do I or do I not hate Tom Brady?

I don’t hate Tom Brady the person. Yes, he is a consummate con man that peddles questionable medical and lifestyle advice. Basically, he’s Gwenyth Paltrow for sports dudes. But, he seems to actually believe the crap he says, so it’s not like he is Trump level con man. I also don’t hate Tom Brady the football player. He does what a quarterback is supposed to do and he does it very well.

I do hate, still, that he receives a bulk of the credit, especially for this game. He threw 3 TDs, that much is true. He also threw three interceptions and, in the second half, looked like Eli Manning. As mentioned, his defense bailed him out. It also helped that Green Bay’s coach isn’t very good at probability and statistics.

I read one article that credited the defense, which gives me some faith that bad actors in sports media are being ushered out the door. These guys are professional writer and speakers and the best they can come up with is “Tom Brady Good/Aaron Rodgers Chokes”. It infuriates me to no end. I even said to Chris this week, why do we pay for sports media content? Eff the sports media.

Kansas City Chiefs – Start Chad Henne?

I’m sorry, Patrick. Please forgive me.

In the closing seconds of the Green Bay/Tampa Bay game, I might have texted Chris, “I might consider starting Henne in this game to give Mahomes more time to rest and recuperate.” He texted about turf toe in an attempt to trigger my paranoia, so I responded in kind.

I forgot that the NFL has access to a wide variety of pain killing medication (surprisingly, even though it’s been decriminalized and legalized, that doesn’t include cannabis) that they can mix into cocktails to get a guy ready to take his 3 hours of abuse on the field. So, it most likely is that Mahomes was out there and tossing 3 TDs against a Bills defense that looked good earlier in the year and the week before, but wilted against decent to good offenses.

A couple of days ago, I went back and read my article previewing the Eagles/Patriots Super Bowl. I must cheer against Tom Brady. I cultivated my entire football fan identity around that key idea. And, so, as a former Pittsburgh native, I swallowed my pride and cheered for the Eagles. I took no joy in this.

This year, I can both root against Tom Brady and for Patrick Mahomes. I do this fully aware that the NFL loves a “riding off into the sunset” story and will push that above all else. Knowing that my heart might be ripped in two adds to the excitement. I take solace in the fact that Chris and I both agree that Tampa, unless their defense plays out of their minds, doesn’t have a chance in this game. Oh crap. That gives me no solace at all.

The Verdict

I enjoyed this past weekend. I did tune out of the Packers/Bucs game for the second and third quarters because I thought the Bucs might run away with the game. Chris got me back in by updating me on Brady’s three picks each time they happened. I then sat in stunned silence at the field goal call before texting Chris that I’m not a football coach but I did not understand it at all. You already know that I didn’t watch the Chiefs/Bills game, but the Chiefs won, so that’s all gravy. Thanks for reading my NFL Conference Championships 2021 Post Mortem and see you in a few days for the Super Bowl Preview.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Conference Championships 2021: A Love(?) Story

Introducton

I think that Chris missed my article this week about the NFL Conference Championships 2021. He texted yesterday to ask my picks for the Super Bowl. I know we talked about it at the end of the wild card round and I told him Kansas City vs. Green Bay. Maybe he wanted to see if I changed my mind.

Spoiler Alert: I didn’t change my mind.

I responded, “I want to see KC/TB, but Brady still has that mojo even if he isn’t very good.” He replied that he wanted to see the same. I hopefully texted back, “The solace is that Brady faced Brees, who is clearly on his last leg. At this point, Rodgers is the superior quarterback.” He agreed. So, since that’s settled, what will I write in this article.

A couple of years ago, I ranked the potential Super Bowls according to an extremely scientific “Eff the Pats” scale. Since the Patriots sucked out loud this year without Brady, I won’t have to implement that scale. I don’t hate Brady as an individual. He only offended me in his unholy union with Belichick. Maybe I should use a “Mahomes Magic” scale. It’s just the “Eff the Pats” scale, but positive. Everyone, send your magic to the Chefs for tomorrow. Chad Henne did okay last week, but I need Mahomes. Continue to read my thoughts on the NFL Conference Championships 2021.

Bills/Bucs – 0 Mahomes Magic

Technically, Bills/Packers is 0 Mahomes Magic, too. However, I will explain in the next section why that isn’t true. This game is, for sure, 0 Mahomes Magic, though. No actual Mahomes. We do get discount Mahomes in Josh Allen. However, if he beats the Chefs, I would be too bitter to enjoy watching him play in the Super Bowl.

Add in the fact that I’d have to watch another Tom Brady Super Bowl and you have a recipe for a potential emotional breakdown. Granted, I just admitted that I don’t hate Brady as a player or even as a person (but he does seem like kind of a trash person sometimes). Not wanting to see Brady again fits into my “been there, done that” box. Plus, the media would simply fellate Brady for the entire two weeks leading to the Super Bowl. It’s enough to make me dry heave.

Bills/Packers – 3 Mahomes Magic

How, without Mahomes even in the game, does it receive any Mahomes Magic, let alone three? Patience. I told you I will explain and I will. Granted, this scenario lacks Patrick Mahomes, as mentioned. However, it also lacks any mention of TB12, too. For me, the addition of Rodgers at the subtraction of Brady is an automatic +3 Mahomes Magic.

I always liked Rodgers. Even when I used to be a bigger Steelers fan and his Packers beat them in the Super Bowl, I shrugged and tipped my hat to the man. Ever since reading the article a few weeks ago that he has thrown only 89 picks in his career. Okay, pause a moment after that last stat because this next one is the real mind screw. He’s thrown 3 (yes, 3) pick sixes. Five guys, including our man Hall of Famer Eli Manning, has throw 3 in a game.

Watching Rodgers eviscerate the Bills defense would put my mind at ease that they beat Mahomes to get there.

Chiefs/Bucs – 5 Mahomes Magic

I mean, let’s be real. Mahomes is worth 10 Mahomes Magic by himself. However, I said I would be consistent to the other scale, so he’s just an automatic 5. Not even Brady is enough to knock that dew off of the lily. Add to the fact that Mahomes beat Brady 3 out of the 4 times they’ve played and I have full confidence in him doing it again.

Sure, there’s the possibility of Brady fellating as mentioned earlier. However, Mahomes Magic easily eclipses anything that Brady brings to the table. Plus, watching that sad old man trip over his walker while the young and virile Patrick Mahomes smile his way through 4 or 5 TDs and another Super Bowl MVP is enough to make a man swoon.

Chiefs/Packers – 8 Mahomes Magic

Mahomes. No Brady in sight. Rodgers. Endless State Farm commercials. What more can you ask for? Nothing. This might be the most perfect Super Bowl matchup in history. If it doesn’t happen, I’m going to simulate it 25,000 times to assuage my hurt. So, if either the Bills or Bucs win, get ready for 70 years of “Super Bowl LV – How It Should Have Been”.

The Verdict

Seriously, though, any outcome of the NFL Conference Championships 2021 is okay with me. Besides, we never actually watch the game. We started a tradition maybe a decade ago now where we watch all of the movies from a franchise on Super Bowl day while still eating the standard Super Bowl fare of appetizers. In honor of Cobra Kai, this year it will be The Karate Kid series. Hey, don’t blame me. Christine came up with the idea. I’d be happy simply rewatching Cobra Kai.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021 Post Mortem: A Love(?) Story

Introduction

Okay, that’s more like it. While I thought the Coin Flip weekend was underwhelming, I enjoyed the heck out of the divisional round this past weekend. I look forward to discussing all of it in this NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021 post mortem article. Seriously, I can’t remember the last time I had this much fun watching the NFL.

It might have been the Steelers/Arizona Super Bowl. Surely, that’s the last game to make me jump out of my seat.

Granted, it wasn’t all wine and roses this weekend, as we will discuss in the article. I experienced one of the single scariest moments of my football fan life this weekend .I guarantee you know what I’m talking about. Nevertheless, I will keep that modicum of suspense so that you continue reading.

I will structure this NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021 post mortem article by analyzing each game. I will start with the game that I considered to be the least exciting and progress to the most exciting game of the weekend in my opinion. Okay, enough explanation. Let’s talk some football.

Snooze Fest (Ravens 3, Bills 17)

I considered this my game of the week going into the weekend. Both of these teams have shot into my top 5 over the last couple of years. I love both quarterbacks. Imagine my surprise then, when I spent most of the first half ignoring it to play chess with my son, then went to bed at halftime. I woke up to a text from Chris about LJ’s injury and checked the score. Turns out, I missed nothing. Well, technically, I missed two Buffalo TDs, but really all I missed was a terrible game.

An exciting blowout (Rams 18, Packers 32)

I knew the outcome of this game before it played. The Rams honestly had no chance. Sure, people commented repeatedly about number 1 defense vs. number 1 offense and that statistic. Turns out none of that matters with Aaron Rodgers residing on the opposing sideline. He and the Packers shredded the Rams. If I’m being honest, I have no idea how the Rams even scored the 18 points they got. Still, a fun game.

More exciting if it hadn’t given me a heart attack (Browns 17, Chefs 22)

Patrick Mahomes went down with a clear concussion. For some reason (plausible deniability), the network played coy about his status for the rest of the game. Until they weren’t able to deny it any longer, then they finally reported it. Now, the rest of this week will simply be shows talking about him in protocol and whether he will play next week. Already, Around the Horn and Pardon the Interruption did a segment on it. I might have to avoid sports talk for the rest of this week. Aside from that, I enjoyed this game. The Browns made it much closer than it should have been. Chris and I both texted one another to say that we thought it was over after the Baker pick deep in their territory. Turns out it wasn’t over until the last play of the game. And, that call took cajones.

Why Was This Game So Fun? (Bucs 30, Aints 20)

There’s something to be said for not having a rooting interest in the game. I hate both these quarterbacks. Well, perhaps hate is too strong a word. However, of the quarterbacks in the divisional round, I put these two guys at the bottom of the likability index. However, I did get what I asked for from this game. Old Man Brady pulled out another of his patented “how the hell did he win that game” games. The Aints suffered another of their recent heartbreaking losses. Perhaps this game says more about me and my capacity for schadenfreude than I’d like. But, if you’ve been here for any time at all, you already knew that.

The Verdict

Other than the Bills, every game went the way I hoped. Even the Bills winning was half a win for me since I only slightly favored the Ravens in the game. That’s not why I enjoyed the weekend so much, though. For whatever reason, I put aside the adult trappings of cynicism and watched football like I used to when I was a kid. I cheered. I shouted. You know what else? I nearly cried over Mahomes’ injury. Hell, I even came to terms with the fact that TB12 might not be as BS as I’ve always considered it. I, for one, can’t wait until the championship games.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021: A Love(?) Story

Introduction

I’m cutting this NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021 preview a bit close. I think the first game this week starts in about an hour and a half. I should have this written and posted before then, so it will still count as a preview. Why is this so late? And, where is the CFP National Championship post mortem? What is happening to this page? Is it about to become inactive for a couple of months again?

Never say never, but I’m committed to keeping the momentum, even if it isn’t quite the same momentum as last year right now.

You expect me to say something about school now. While not completely wrong, the story is actually much simpler and less responsible. I started playing Minecraft again on my new laptop and that sucked many hours from my life over the last week. I apologize for my negligence. Let’s talk about the NFL Divisional Playoffs 2021.

NFC Divisional Playoffs

Rams/Packers (Saturday, 4:35 EST): I texted Chris earlier in the week with the question, “Any surprises this weekend? re: NFL” I will save his answer for later because it relates to another game. I responded that the Rams have a great defense this year and they could pull off a win against the Packers. He replied about Jared Goff’s injury and I conceded he was probably right. The Rams might keep the game close, but ultimately I think that Aaron Rodgers and his 89 (seriously) career interceptions find a way to pull out the win.

Bucs/Aints (Sunday, 6:40 EST): During our text exchange, we both agreed this game has the potential to be the most entertaining. Sure, N’Awlins beat up on the Bucs twice this year. But, and this argument isn’t much of an argument, Tom Brady in the playoffs. Also, we can’t forget the Aint’s recent tortured history in the playoffs. Sure, they usually wait until the conference championship to break their fans hearts. I have confidence they can take care of business a round early this year.

AFC Divisional Playoffs

Ravens/Bills (Saturday, 8:15 EST): If Bucs/Aints promises to be the most entertaining, this game might give them a run for their money. The Bills are favored by less than a field goal. Lamar Jackson finally doesn’t have to listen to the dumb narrative that he hasn’t won a playoff game. This whole week, they’ve instead gone with the equally dumb narrative that he’s never won a game in snow. Well, the snow in Buffalo can be brutal, but this storm looks to be mild. I’m rooting for the Bills, but a Rats/Chefs championship honestly sounds more fun.

Browns/Chefs (Sunday, 3:05 EST): Now, for Chris’s answer to my text. He responded with a joke about the Browns winning and him not able to text that with a straight face. I replied, “It’s funny because a lot of the talking heads are picking that game as a possible upset. I think they just did so because there’s literally nothing to lose. You either look like a “genius” or everyone forgets you made the pick. I’m not ready to pick against the Chefs until they give me reason and now that I’ve typed it, I’m jazzed about Rats/Chefs next round.

The Verdict

I said after the Wild Card that I wasn’t as excited about the games as I thought I might be. I barely watched any and tuned out from the Steelers after the first play of the game. However, something about this week’s games must have interested me. I searched for them earlier on Hulu before realizing the games started later today. Good thing they do. I got a chance to write this preview and get even more excited for the games. GB/TB and KC/Bal sound like a fun conference championship weekend.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021 Post Mortem: A Love (?) Story

Introduction

You may be surprised to see this NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021 Post Mortem article. Where is the DC review from last week? I keep meaning to finish comics week for January 2021 by reviewing the DC books from this month. However, I keep getting distracted and not finishing the books. I hope to have them done by tomorrow and then I can do an post mortem article for the CFP National Championship Game on Thursday. Perhaps, I will do an article and video for Minecraft dungeons to finally get into some gaming content.

It’s been a while since Quinn and I have sat down to play.

I think I will structure this article as a Top 5 list. But, you might say, weren’t there six games this weekend? Yes, and I will give you 3 guesses (but you’ll only need one) as to which game didn’t crack the top 5. Here’s a hint. When Chris texted, “This is getting ugly”, I responded with ” I think I need to just swear off this team until they get good or, at least, fun.”

Call me a front runner all you want. I just can’t with this team anymore. The coach can’t properly motivate them. AB clowned him in the locker room a couple of years ago. Juju listened and stopped dancing. He then promptly gave the Browns bulletin board material. Ben Roethlisberger is a repeatedly alleged rapist. What, then, am I supposed to find appealing here? I suppose those were all much bigger hints than the first. Oh well, let’s dive into some NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021 Post Mortem. Except, of course, for the Steelers/Browns game.

5 – Alas, poor Mitchell, I knew him well

I can be the first to admit that page favorite Mitch Trubisky does himself no favors. I don’t think he’s a bad quarterback. In fact, I often say that Josh Allen is Mitch Trubisky if he gets a good coach. Now, the question becomes, will that ever happen?

We got closer to it possibly happening. I saw a headline on NFL.com that said he might be gone from Chicago without a deep playoff run. Well, the Saints ended any of that talk by decimating the Bears this weekend. The funny thing is that Chris and I both texted during the first half about what a decent game it was.

Then, he texted, “They just came out after halftime and laid an egg.” I don’t remember his exact words, but they had that sentiment. I just wish for the best for our dear friend Mitch. I also hope that Tompa ends the Saints in the most heart breaking fashion next week. Cheering for Tom Brady two weeks in a row. What hath this year wrought?

4 – “Seattle is the most complete team in the league”

I texted these words to Chris earlier in the season. I tried to give it more merit by giving the actual week when it happened, but I honestly don’t remember. And, I’m not going to comb through our archives to find out. So, you will just have to take my word for it. After all, why would I lie about something so stupid?

Well, you also need to take my word that ever since I texted those words, Seattle fell back to earth. They barely resembled an NFL team some weeks, let alone the most complete team in the league. The Seahawks again went out of their way to prove me wrong this weekend. They lost to a Rams team with a former AAF (is that even what it was called?) guy and Jared Goff with a broken thumb as their quarterbacks.

I think, of all the games this weekend, this one both shocked and made me the most angry. Sure, I have more invested in the Steelers as a former life long fan. However, I fully expected them to blow that game. Other than their inconsistency this year, Seattle showed no indication of a potential let down.

3 – I think TB12’s got his steroids, er protein shakes

The Golden Boy didn’t light Football Team up for 5 TDs like I hoped. He threw for two in the first half. Washington came back in the second half to make it close. In general, that’s one thing you can count on in today’s National Football League. One team will almost certainly come back in the second half to make the game close.

I must admit. Looking at the box score, I have no idea how Washington even competed with Tampa in this game. I thought that the Seattle game was more shocking. Now that I see some of the names on the Washington roster, I reverse that decision. I lieu of further explanation, I present the following screen shot.

Seriously, has there ever been a roster that looked more like a “Football Team” from some generic 1980s or 1990s football video game?

2 – LJ defeats yet another of those dumb narratives

Nothing irritates me more about sports talk than the narrative, “(some guy) can’t win the big game. We are told over and over how sports are team dependent. Then, someone like Lebron James, Clayton Kershaw, and in the NFL more recently, LJ get the label of not being able to “win the big game”.

Granted, there are a lot of lazy narratives in sports journalism and “journalism”. We live in an era where talking heads scream at each other from across the table. Well, technically, since COVID, they scream at each other from across the room.

Any stupid opinion can be picked up by a bot on Twitter and turned into the latest “hot take”. Nevertheless, I contend that nothing needs to die more than this stupid idea of “(some guy) can’t win the big one.” Well, at least I don’t have to listen to it said about LJ anymore.

1 – Both the Bills and the Browns won this weekend

Earlier, I said I refused to talk about the Browns/Steelers game. I stand by that. I only mention them in the header so that I can make my stupid joke. Okay, now that I’ve properly telegraphed that, on with the show.

What is this, the 90s? Am I right, folks? Am I right? The 1990s? The time of aborted Woodstock festivals and the last time either of these two teams was relevant in any fashion. Okay, perhaps that joke wasn’t worth the set up. Or, maybe the set up was the joke the whole time.

I know. What can I say? I’m a master of alternative comedy.

All I’m saying is I like the Bills. I wish them only success against the Ravens next game. Then, if the Browns can somehow pull off the upset vs. the Chiefs, we can have a real old fashioned 1990s Super Bowl where they lose by 35 points. Too bad none of their old foes are still alive in the NFC to really drive the point home.

The Verdict

My verdict of the NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021 post mortem is that it wasn’t nearly as entertaining as I hoped. Chris and I texted several times during this year about how glad we were that football was happening in spite of COVID. My interest started to wane about midseason and completely fell off when the Steelers lost their first game. I only wanted them to go 16-0 and lose in their first playoff game. That would have been much more satisfying for my schadenfreude than what actually happened. Oh well, the games for the next round look fun on paper, at least. Besides, what else am I going to do with my weekend?

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021: A Love? Story

Introduction

Welcome to NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021. I can’t remember if we did any previews last year for the NFL playoffs other than the Super Bowl. I suppose there is at least one way to figure that out. Okay, okay, if you’re going to pressure me into it. I will search the archives.

BRB…

Okay, in actuality, we were right on top of the entire playoffs last year. So, yay for us! Now, for the new readers, allow me to explain the title. If you’re old hat around here, skip the next couple of paragraphs and get to the good stuff.

A few years ago, I got the idea to rename Wild Card Weekend to Coin Flip Weekend. It has, by far, the most variance of any of the postseason games other than maybe the Super Bowl in the last 20 years or so. I found a quarter, named him George, and used him to predict the games. George actually did pretty well. If I bet on George’s pick, I’d have made money.

George led to another cockamamie idea of becoming the “Completely Ignorant” prognosticator to show how silly it was that there are so many talking heads shows. Clearly, that failed, as the number of those shows has increased exponentially. Oh well, I am tired of calling myself completely ignorant in a society that actually finds that to be a virtue. Let’s talk some NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021.

NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021: AFC

Colts/Bills (Saturday, 1:05 EST): Earlier in the year, I called Josh Allen, “Mitch Trubisky with a good coach”. I stand by that analysis. Allen improved every year, this year by leaps and bounds to lead the Bills to their first division title since the 1990s. I’m all in on the Bills. Hopefully they don’t eff it up against the Colts. Then again, Chris and I were texting and I said I’d have gladly traded either the Rats or Browns for the Colts. Ended up trading the dysfunctional Fins for them. While Phillip Rivers can use the extra money for his 17 kids, I hope the Bills roll.

Rats/Tuxedos (Sunday, 1:05 EST): As a supposed Steelers fan, I should hate the Ravens. I don’t. I love Lamar Jackson in spite of his fall back to earth this year. On the other hand, I hate the Titans and I don’t even have a valid reason why. If love is to prevail, I guess it needs to be LJ and the Ravens.

Browns/Steelers (Sunday, 8:15 EST): Again, as a supposed Steelers fan, I should hate the Browns. For most of my life, I have. Then, Baker came along and I kind of enjoyed their brand of inconsistency. This year, I think I’m just tired of incompetence. Speaking of incompetence, I asked earlier if 10-6 team ever fired their coach. Sure, the Steelers ended up 12-4, but it wasn’t for lack of trying. Time to flip that coin. Eff both these teams.

NFL Coin Flip Weekend 2021: NFC

Rams/Seahawks (Saturday, 4:45 EST): Once upon a time, I declared the Seahawks the most complete team in the league. The whammy (I swear that’s not what I intended) worked and they immediately began sucking out loud. The Rams can go to hell. Along with the Patriots, they delivered the most boring Super Bowl in my lifetime. Go Hawks.

Tompa/Football Team (Saturday, 8:15 EST): Dan Snyder is a dick. Screw his stupid football team and the stupid football team name. I should hate Tampa because The Golden Boy is down there. I don’t. As I’ve said before, it must have just been the unholy union of the Patriots and Brady that made me hate both entities. Also, Chase Young is a moron. I hope TB calls up his old steroids guy, er finds the fountain of youth down there in Florida, and drops an old fashioned 5 TDs on the barely concealed racist nickname.

Bears/Saints (Sunday, 4:45 EST): How the hell are the Bears in the playoffs? Who let them in? Jesus, this league is a joke. A 7-9 team is again hosting a playoff game and the Bears made it, too. Look, I’m sick as sick of Drew Brees as the next guy, but give them one more game and hope the Seahawks blow them out next week to keep that old voodoo curse alive.

The Verdict

The NFL is selling this as the Super Duper Mega Wild Card Weekend. They added one team, which admittedly gave us an extra game in each conference. That’ s a 50% increase. Is a 50% increase really all that super? I guess it depends on what you’re increasing. Am I right, Cialis? Ahem, back to football.

During one of our conversations, Chris and I both said that this year’s playoffs could have been interesting. While that’s true, they’re not as interesting as I’d like them to be. Especially this week with no Mahomes. Also, no real team to root strongly for other than the Bills, who I’m all in on this year. Even so, I’m sure I will tune in for at least half of the games and I’ll check the Steelers score for my yearly dose of schadenfreude. See you guys next week for the Divisional Round.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

Best of the NFC 2020 Midseason

Introduction

Only because we have to, here is our best of the NFC 2020 Midseason. As mentioned in the previous article, we aren’t exactly at the halfway point. Some teams have played nine games. There’s no undefeated team in the NFC to defer to like the Steelers. Plus, I don’t have any NFC team this year that has me psyched. Therefore, we do this out of obligation.

Love, too, of course. Always love.

I don’t mean to say that there aren’t good things in the NFC. It’s just that the bad is so bad (and consequently in the east, so where I start this article) that I don’t even want to face it. I joked earlier in the year that the NFL should move the AFC South to Europe when they expand. With the way the NFC East is playing this year, maybe we should move them into the Atlantic Ocean. With that, how about that Best of the NFC 2020 midseason!

NFC East

Philadelphia Eagles (3-4-1): That is not a typo. The Eagles are in first place with a sub 500 record. If I had done this a few weeks ago, the leader of the division only had 2 wins. I told you. Putrid. The best for the Eagles this year is it’s only been 2 years since they won the Super Bowl, so maybe that glow is still a bit shiny.

Washington Football Team (2-6): Yes, I will bang this drum until it snaps. The best thing about the Washington Football Team is that they are no longer nicknamed an offensive term. In true Dan Snyder douche fashion, though, they haven’t picked a new nickname and are only known as the football team. What a dumb ass.

Dallas Cowboys (2-7): I’m struggling here. The Pokes had deulsions of grandeur before the season. Those shattered spectacularly in the first game and then again when Dak went down. I guess the best thing is that their 4th string QB held his own against the Steelers. *shrug*

New York Giants (2-7): The best thing about this is that I’m done with this terrible division. On to better things.

NFC West

Seattle Seahawks (6-2): I considered calling the Seahawks my NFC team because they’ve been probably the most consistent team in the first half of the season. Sure, they’ve had some bumps in the road, but that’s to be expected. I really want a Seattle/KC Super Bowl. Also, DK Metcalf is a stone cold stud.

Arizona Cardinals (5-3): The best thing about the Cardinals is that they’ve avoided the Covid surge in their state. Seriously, though, how can you say anything other than Kyler Effing Murray. I thought he might be too short to succeed in the NFL. Shows how much I know.

Los Angeles Rams (5-3): I mean, the best thing is that if they can figure out a way to beat the Seahawks, they’ll technically be in first place. The Rams are just another of those faceless teams that could disappear tomorrow and nobody would mourn them.

San Francisco 49ers (4-5): Having suffered a bit of a curse because of their treatment of Colin Kaepernick, the good news is that it seems as if Kaep doesn’t want to play. So, the best thing is that the effects of the curse are minor and localized to selling yourself into salcap hell for a Super bowl loss last year.

NFC North

Green Bay Packers (6-2): I almost coronated the Packers as my NFC team, too. I’ve always liked Rodgers. He’s a more palatable anti-Brady than the Manning Brothers ever were. If Seattle doesn’t play in the Super Bowl, I want it to be these guys.

Chicago Bears (5-3): The best for these guys is that the pact they made with the devil or whatever voodoo magic they weaved at the beginning of the season only demanded the benching of Trubisky. This team stinks and yet, they’re in the hunt for the playoffs. I just hope Mitch gets another shot with a real coach.

Minnesota Vikings (3-5): I hate going to a well too often, but the only thing I got for the Vikings is at least they’re not the Lions. Remember when I said that the Rams were faceless? At least I can name their QB and coach off the top of my head. Not so for the Vikings.

Detroit Lions (3-5): After several years of doing this, I finally remembered that Matthew Stafford is their quarterback. That’s gotta be worth something. No? Well, then, I got nothing.

NFC South

New Orleans Saints (6-2): Speaking of voodoo magic, how the hell are the Aints in first place with noodle arm Drew Brees under center? Plus, there’s that whole controversy about him speaking out about gay rights or something? I could Google it, but I’m feeling lazy right now. Just know that I’m firmly on the Taysom Hill bandwagon.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-3): You expect me to say Tom Brady. I expect me to say Tom Brady. After week 1, it didn’t look like I would say Tom Brady. After this most recent game, it might seem silly if I said Tom Brady. Seriously, though, how can I say anything but Tom Brady?

Atlanta Falcons (3-6): How do you come up with a best for Atlanta ever since their Super Bowl loss to the Patriots a couple of years ago? It has just been one nightmare after another for this team. Whatever voodoo magic they used has not ultimately paid off.

Carolina Panthers (3-6): I mean, Cam Newton is in New England stinking up the joint. That gave Teddy Bridgewater a chance to start. I wouldn’t say that’s be great, but it is probably the best thing to happen to the team. At least the future looks bright.

The Verdict

NFC 2020 midseason isn’t as much fun as the AFC was in my opinion. First off, you have the worst division in football in the NFC East. Secondly, I can’t distinguish between about a half a dozen of these teams. Third, there’s only about 2 or 3 teams that I’d actively root for as a non fan. There’s just not enough here to say that the NFC 2020 midseason report is the best of the two.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).

Best of the AFC 2020 Midseason

Introduction

I realize it isn’t exactly the AFC 2020 midseason. Some teams, including the Colts and Titans after last night, have played 9 games. However, the team of my childhood (and the surprising favorite team of a colleague I recently learned) the Steelers, have only played 8. While I take no joy necessarily in the fact that they’re undefeated, they are. We should show deference to that perfection.

Tried to find a humorous image using the search term “imperfectly perfect” and it was just a bunch of motivational crap. Nobody has time for that.

And, so that is how we have arrived at the “midseason” report for the AFC this year. For the quarter report, we did “awards”. This time around, because we like to focus on the positive, I’m going to do the best of the first half of the year for each team. I thought about doing best and worse, but (a) that’s twice as much work and (b) focus on the positive! So, let’s discuss the best of the AFC 2020 Midseason.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills (7-2): The best thing to happen to the Bills this year has got to be that Josh Allen finally seems to be rounding into form as a decent to good quarterback. He’s still not a top tier quarterback even though I might have him in my top 10 at this point. That’s actually an intriguing couple of questions. Maybe I’ll answer them before the end of the year.

Miami Dolphins (5-3): Anyone who has followed this page for any period of time knows exactly what I’m going to say here. Granted, it has only been two games and he wasn’t great in one of them, but Tua Tagovaiola has been my man crush since his first appearance at Alabama.

New England Patriots (3-5): I guess in a year where everything seems to be going sideways for the Pats, the best thing for them is that they aren’t “Eff the Pats” this year. I’m sure they appreciate it. The thing is, I don’t hate Brady without the Pats and I feel sorry for the Pats without Brady. It was just an unholy alliance I couldn’t allow to exist.

New York Jets (0-9): I mean, what can I say about the Jets? At least they have an inside track at Trevor Lawrence. Though, what does that mean now that the guy has had Covid-19? We’ve seen that might have lingering effects. I suppose that it is fitting that I’m having trouble spinning an 0-9 record into a positive.

AFC West

Kansas City Chiefs (8-1): You might expect me to say Mahomes here. And, with reason because I considered it. After all, last year he became my main NFL man crush. But, the fact of the matter is…well, the fact of the matter is that I’m saying Mahomes is the best thing that has happened to the Chiefs this year and maybe ever.

Las Vegas Raiders (5-3): I didn’t want the Raiders to move. The Raiders are, and always will be, from Oakland. However, I’d be lying if I said anything other than “Vegas Baby!” when discussing the best for this team. It’s just perfect that there are now two teams in the gambling capital of America. It really puts a dent in the whole sports is about comradery and competition.

Denver Broncos (3-5): Denver is rapidly approaching the territory that Seattle occupied briefly a few years ago. If someone doesn’t remind me periodically of their existence, I forget. I guess the best thing I can say about them is that at least they have this year to avoid being the fourth place team in the division. Because, next year, Herbert is going to blow up and propel San Diego ahead of them.

San Diego (I know, LA, but eff that) Chargers (2-6): The Chargers don’t deserve Justin Herbert. But, they have him. And, like Mahomes, he’s the best thing to happen to this team in a long time. Sure, they had Phillip Rivers, but honestly, what kind of a life is that for a football team?

AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers (8-0): They are my childhood team. That’s a tough habit to break. However, I drift farther and farther away every year from this team. Perhaps that’s the best thing to happen to them as they are 8-0 this year. I refuse to admit their rapey helmetless motorcycle riding QB is great. Their receiving corps thogh.

Baltimore Ravens (6-2): The best thing for this team is that they aren’t the Browns anymore. Can you imagine? Having Baker Mayfield as QB instead of Lamar Jackson? Think about it. Just for a minute, Ravens fans, and tell me I’m wrong.

Cleveland Browns (5-3): I used to like Baker. I rooted for the Browns and tried to use the 538 playoff predictor to get them into the playoffs a couple of years ago. I might still like Baker. But, he’s not the best thing on the Browns this year. Then again, he just might be. I can’t think of anything better. How sad is that?

Cincinatti Bengals (2-5-1): I’d be insane to say anything other than Joe “Mothereffing” Burrow. The kid has lived up to the hype as the number one pick. Sure, the Bengals are in last place in the division and they have two games left against the Steelers and one against the Ravens. They can hang their hat on Burrow being legit and next year being better.

AFC South

Indianapolis Colts (6-3): I guess the best thing about the Colts is that they’re tied for first in the division in spite of being in salcap hell because of Andrew Luck’s decision to retire at the beginning of last season. By the way, I still support it 100%. Some things (meaning pretty much anything) are more important than football.

Tennessee Titans (6-3): Having trouble coming up with a best for the Titans. Until the Steelers beat them a few weeks ago, they were also undefeated. Since then, they’ve lost 3 out of 4 including one to the aforementioned Colts. I guess Derrick Henry is a beast.

Houston Texans (2-7): The best thing for the Texans is that they’ve gone back to their annual status of most disappointing team in the AFC. I mean, that’s not really a best, but it is a superlative. Great job, Texans!

Jacksonville Jaguars (1-7): Sure the Jets are winless, but I’m not entirely sure where I was going with that. The fact of the matter is that it is best for both of these teams that American sports don’t have European soccer style relegation.

The Verdict

I’m actually more interested in the conference now that we’ve reached the AFC 2020 midseason. The Chiefs no longer look to be the world beaters. The Steelers are surprisingly playing an effective heel as the only undefeated team. Tua! is winning hearts across Florida. Justin Herbert and Joe Burrow round out the great young QBs in the league. I keep saying to Chris that we seem to be going through another golden age for QBs and I’m here for it.

Note: All teams and the single logo used on this web page are the property of the NFL. They are used without consent (written or otherwise), but only in good fun. If you’re feeling litigious, please refrain from throwing your vast legal resources at this small page that caters to my kids, Chris (Hi Chris!) and about 25 Russian bots (Hi Sergei!).