Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Five things I learned* watching the opening weekend of NFL football

1. Ron Jaworski is the best color/analyst in the game and it's great to have him in the MNF booth.

Just getting rid of Theisman would have been enough but Jaworski offers real insight into the game. He belongs in the booth making observations, not in the studio trying to make sense of Michael Irvin's rambling idiocy. Example: As the Bengals lined up, he pointed out that the corners were playing inside the wideouts and that indicated a blitz. Sure enough there was a blitz. Cool. He also implied that Jeremi Johnson had a huge cock and it made Kornheiser giggle.

2. Brian Billick is a vain and stupid man.

Your backup, mistake-prone QB is in the game. You've already committed 5 turnovers and yet somehow you find yourself down only 7 points in the final 3+ minutes of the 4th quarter. You're up against one of the worst rushing defenses in the league. Let's look at your play calling shall we?

1st-3, CIN3 3:11 W. McGahee rushed to the right for 1 yard gain
2nd-2, CIN2 2:29 K. Boller incomplete pass to the right
3rd-2, CIN2 2:23 W. McGahee rushed to the right for 1 yard gain
4th-1, CIN1 2:00 BAL committed 10 yard pass interference penalty
4th-11, CIN11 1:54 CIN committed 5 yard penalty
1st-6, CIN6 1:49 W. McGahee rushed to the left for 4 yard gain
2nd-2, CIN2 1:24 K. Boller incomplete pass to the right
3rd-2, CIN2 1:13 M. Myers intercepted K. Boller for no gain

Okay, they got screwed on the phantom pass intereference call on Heap. Granted. But once the make-up call is made and you've run it inside the 2 on 1st down momentum has shifted You have 3 chances to gain 1.5 yards. You don't need to be creative or cute, you need to tie the game. RUN THE FUCKING BALL.

This game was the beginning of the end of Billick in Baltimore. He's gone at the end of the season and the Ravens do not make the playoffs. Other best bets to not be coaching the same team in 2008? Tom Coughlin, Jack Del Rio, Joe Gibbs, Romeo Crenel, Dick Jauron, and if there is any justice in the world… Herm Edwards.

3. The AFC is as dominant in the NFL as the western conference is in the NBA.

The two consensus "best" teams in the NFC (Saints and Bears) combined to score 6 offensive points. The Eagles laid an egg against a Packers team that had lost 5 straight home openers at Lambeau. Dallas' defense and Wade Phillips' coaching will be were exposed and will continue to be exposed, and trendy San Francisco looked awful. The smart money on NFC champion future bets should be on Seattle (+650) and Carolina (+625) right now. Carolina gets TB and ATL twice, the NFC West (with Seattle and SF travelling across 3 time zones for 1:00 pm EST starts), and their toughest non-division games against the Colts and Cowboys are also at home. If you're looking for a deep, deep sleeper… Detroit (+5000) and John "I guarantee 10 wins" Kitna isn't the worst value bet you could make. If you can get (-150) on the AFC to win the Super Bowl right now, take it and don't look back.

4. In genral, televised commercial advertisements make me less likely to buy the product being advertised

And it's only week one, so you know these are going to get worse before they get better…
  • John Cougar Mellancamp makes me hate Chevrolet, Americana, and you. Especially you.
  • Those Coors Light guys are what we thought they were. I personally would like to crown their ass. What does it take to get some hot, scantily clad women back in beer ads? The More Taste League? Attack squirrels? 3 goofballs playing madlibs with Bill Parcells? I have three words for you, domestic light beer advertisers: T, N, A. Seriously. It shouldn't be this difficult.
  • I hate Comcast so much that I'm backing the Big 10 network in their dispute but the misleading, bullshit ads from both sides are already making me crazy. The competing claims to be "doing it for the fans" are embarrassing. To quote David Cross, "You're shitting in our mouths and calling it a sundae." Shut. Up.
  • John Lynch is already thinking about next week, when, God willing, he can suck my balls. His wife Nancy, and his kids Jake, Lindsay, and Lillian can join in too.
5. Betting on the NFL is going to be a tough slog this year

Beyond the logistical difficulty of gambling online (what with it being made illegal an all), the parity, week-to-week fluctuations, and lousy coaching/officiating, make it extremely difficult to find good bets. So… because I'm a law-abiding citizen and a lousy prognosticator, I'll make my pretend wagers keep track of my pretend winnings here. Each week I'll take 5 games including both nationally televised night games.

1. New Orleans (-3) over TAMPA BAY. Normally I like me a home dog but with the extra time to prepare and Garcia and Williams banged up, I think the Saints will bounce back and get a win here.
2. MIAMI (+3.5) over Dallas. What was that about home dogs? The Miami defense is more formidable than the Giants (as if it's possible to be less). I think Miami wins outright (upset special of the week) but I'll hedge that bet
3. DETROIT (-3) over Minnesota. Two defensive scores and one long screen pass accounted for all of the scoring against Atlanta and it was more than enough. When they get pressed into a shootout, the offense will show it's inexperience. I like a defensive score for Detroit in this game.
4. NEW ENGLAND (-3.5) over San Diego. I hate this game and wouldn't bet it but that I'm a degenerate gambler. Norv Turner is a marginal coach, Bill Bellichek is a good one. New England is at home and this is a statement game but they don't have the horses to stop Gates and Tomlinson. The outcome will be in question into the 4th quarter and while that usually leads me to take the points, I'll give them and cheer for the Pats.
5. PHILADELPHIA (-7) over Washington. Another game I don't love but I think Philly is the better squad in general and will be a little more desparate for the win. I hate picking teams to win and not cover so… Philly it is.

  • $20 parlay on 1, 2, and 3. A correct bet pays $140.
  • $50 on 1. A correct bet pays $95.
  • $25 each on 2, and 3 individually. Each correct bet pays $48.
  • $20 each on 4 and 5. Each correct bet pays $38
  • Opening pool: $1000. Amount wagered: $160. Amount remaining $840.

*Learned = confirmed suspicions that I was harboring


Andrew Wice said...

Hey, I just started an unconfirmed rumour that Patriots Coach Bill Bellispellcheck was somehow tied up with the gambling elements of organized crime, which is why he was cheating.

Does this affect your parlay?

Andrew Wice said...

And spot-on, sir, regarding Billick. The Ravens definitely deserved to lose after that pathetic display on the goal line.

If you only have one yard to go, why drop back your (backup) quarterback at all?

Accurate also is the assessment of head coaches on the "hot seat" -- especially if the seat is hot from their fear-squeezed urine.

Muumuuman said...

The saints only 3 point favorites over tampa? Put the c-note down monkey butt!

Big Blue Monkey said...

Your first point is quite valid, but also so similar to King Kaufman's point that I think you owe him a link, sir.