Friday, February 26, 2010
I was at the ESPN college football meetings last year and God just put it on my heart to put out a monthly message to a group of Christian broadcasters—on-air people, producers, directors, camera people, and others who are believers... It’s always hard to witness to a stranger, but it’s much harder with the people you work with. You have to invest in those relationships—to love them and also for encouragement.
I think we all need encouragement. We’re the body of Christ. We can all be used. Romans 1:12 talks about being “mutually encouraged” in each other’s faith. It’s easy to live the comfortable Christian life, to not be in the Word, to not disciple. I’m no different than any other Christian. I would appreciate any prayers about being bold for the Lord. We all have an obligation, that command from Christ to open our mouths for him.
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Sometime in the 2009 season, the Royals mascot (a lion? why? and he's named "Slugerrr" [sic]) chucked a free hot dog into the crowd. Some Royals fan took it right in the face, and is now claiming a detached retina & cataracts in a $25,000 lawsuit.
1. It's a baseball game, boner. Pay attention! It could have been a line drive (and you can't sue for that).
2. But it was a free hot dog. At MLB parks, that's an $18 value. I'd catch a free hot dog in my mouth like a trick dolphin.
Now then, taking a wiener in the eye for money ... there's a name for that kind of industry.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
When I read that Tomlinson was released and wanted to go to a team with a chance for a championship (i.e. any team that is not coached by Nerf Turner), I ran through all the possibilities in my head: which championship-caliber teams are short one dynamic, part-time running back?
I considered the Eagles, but assumed that Westbrook was returning. However, Westbrook's contract was terminated today*. Who is going to pair with McCoy in the pass-happy (which includes the RBs) Eagles offense?
I can't be the first one to call it: LT goes to the Eagles, which sucks for me.
* thanks again for breaking him, London Fletcher!
Saturday, February 20, 2010
Portis finished the year on IR. Although he's a Snyder and fan favorite, there is no question that injuries have been mounting in recent years, cutting his production off at the knees. His backup was also on IR, which forced Washington to bring in a series of backs off the street to run behind the slumdog line (also largely signed off the street).
In early February, Portis did a radio interview from Brazil. With no lack of self-regard, Portis had some harsh words for eternally-embattled QB Jason Campbell, taking special aim at Campbell's demonstrated lack of bellyfire:
"No disrespect to Jason but everybody in that locker room can tell you, you'll never see Jason mad, you'll never see Jason's tempo change, you'll never see Jason get mad ... But as a leader, you never heard -- it was always, 'Jason couldn't take control of the huddle,' or he didn't do this or he didn't do that."Perhaps if he hadn't started with "no disrespect" it wouldn't have sounded so disrespectful. It could have come across as another teammate explaining that the QB isn't a rah-rah guy, but tries to lead by his example on the field.
But it provoked some bellyfire in Campbell. In fact, Campbell goes on the attack, and dusts off Portis with a vehemence that I've never heard from Campbell nor heard directed at the quixotic Portis [emphasis is mine]:
"How is he going to say I'm not a leader? I mean, that's just not true. To me, that's somebody who shows that they don't know what a real leader is ... There's a reason guys get selected as captains, and there's a reason guys don't get selected as captains. Obviously, he doesn't have the respect of the locker room to be a captain. For someone to try to take a shot at me at the end of the season, after they haven't even been around, only speaks about their character anyways."Now on the one hand, I'm glad that Campbell rose up to crush Portis, who many feel receives special treatment as an owner's favorite. On the other hand, it's February and we have a brand new organization. Although both of these players are under contract, neither is assured of a place with the team next year. This dust-up could clear the air for a productive backfield next year, or it could light a fuse of season-long disgruntlement.
"Not one time have I come out and made any excuses about anything with my situation. I never do anything to try to hurt my teammates. Some people need to stop being 'me' guys and start being 'we' guys. And another thing, and I want you to write this, too, how does he even know what's going on with our team?"
"How's he question anything when for those four or five weeks before he was on IR , he never even came around. He wasn't with us. He was never at practice. Who does he think was holding the offense together? He should go ask the coaches and the players if he wants to know. But he wasn't around to do that. He doesn't know anything about leadership."
"You've got guys out there working their butts off, guys out there practicing and doing everything they need to do to prepare for Sundays, and you see him over there getting special treatment. What does that say about him? I go out, I get beat down on Sundays, and I still have to go out and practice and get ready for games. And that's what your supposed to do."
How Coach Shanahan handles the poison in the locker room, as well as CB Westbrook's DUI (the first Washington player arrested since before Gibbs returned), may offer an early window into his administrative style. Shanahan drafted Portis. But he also traded him.
I have a feeling there might be some more dusting before the season begins. Something to keep an eye on, since Olympic luge isn't very entertaining on the radio.
Friday, February 19, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Campbell had his best season statistically in 2009, but finished in the middle of the QB pack and his team went 4-12. He has never looked comfortable in Snyder's spinning schemes, he has never delivered a meaningful game-winning performance and he has never given up. His status before the 2009 season was very tenuous before the team granted him a lukewarm vote of confidence.
Scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in 2010, it seemed certain that Campbell would leave Washington where he neither flourished nor was appreciated. Many Sportsjacks have predicted that Washington would draft a QB with the number 4 pick.
And yet, those special circumstances ...
1. If no Collective Bargaining Agreement is achieved in the next couple weeks, Campbell (along with 212 other players) will lose his unrestricted status and become a restricted free agent. This will severely limit the movement of free agents this offseason. The draft becomes that much more important this year.
2. New coach Mike Shanahan is no spazz for free agents, and would instantly put his stamp on this team by not giving Campbell the boot. Shanahan is also no spazz for first round QBs, and seems capable of picking for true need: offensive line.
3. Trading for a QB, or losing our few remaining draft picks by plucking a restricted free agent, seems unlikely given Shanahan's character. There simply isn't a more proven talent available. And we're still paying draft picks for that old fucking Dancing Queen, I shit you not.
4. General consensus seems unanimous: "Campbell was set up to fail by an administration that neglected the offensive line for the better part of a decade." Shorn of Vinny Cerrato, Snyder will have trouble continuing to ignore the obvious. With a strong-minded head coach in charge, Snyder's role in football decisions will shrink, praise jebus.
Criticism of Campbell falls into two camps: lack of pocket presence and "he dont threw no deep ballls" [sic]. That he has been battered behind slumdog lines throughout his career is obvious: he has been sacked an average of over twice per game.
His pocket awareness has never been great, and one wonders if this is a skill that can be taught. However, cutting down on the number of sacks (and countless late hits) he receives will help to reduce his mortal terror, not to mention bad footwork.
As for the charge that he didn't throw the deep ball ... I'll let Campbell respond, as he did to Chief Idiot Peter King: "I don't know how anyone can say something like that. Don't you think I wanted to throw the ball downfield? By the time I looked up, I was getting hit."
Although Campbell lacks some innate intangibles (pocket presence, bellyfire), he's been the best Washington QB since Mark Rypien and no better option will be available in 2010. I am convinced that Shanahan is a smart coach and will give Campbell (who has only begun two seasons as the starter) another chance ... hopefully behind a better offensive line.
Create your own video slideshow at animoto.com.
Trivia Question Round-Up
Crunching these numbers was actually somewhat entertaining. It was like watching the season's expectations flash past ... as if swimming in a school of silver-sheen, stupid fish. Yes, there is much to be proud of.
TQ1. The team picked by our contestants for the most "Shoe-ins" was your Superbowl Champion New Orleans Saints. Over the 17 week regular season, they wore the Big Shoe 24 times. Gratification should be our watch-word: 22 teams were fitted for shoes by our contestants, a damn fine spread. The Saints were followed by a Ravens/Packers tie, then a Colts/Cincy tie. No one got this question right.
TQ2. The team selected the most times for the Clash of the Titans was the Philadelphia Eagles. Twenty teams appeared in the Clash of the Titans, a damn fine spread, but the Eagles were in a premier matchup four times. In those clashes, the Pedophilia She-gals went 3-1. Big BM & Jess got this right.
TQ3. The team which most often appeared on the Underdog List was, (surprise!) the Detroit Lions. They were considered a severe fudgfest in 12 of 16 games. Final record? 2-14.
The Detroit Leotards were followed by the Raiders and then Tampa Bay. Eighteen teams made this ignominious list, a damn sad spread. Leftnut, MMMan & Jess got this right.
Cincinati's surprise season ended with the dull splat of playoff fudge pie. They made all three lists, which underlines the eyebrow-raising yet ultimately disappointing Bengals season: 13 Shoe-Ins, 1 Clash, 4 Underdogs.
Anyway, the Superbowl Pick'em Winner is...
While Leftnut scored an incredible 30 points in one week (with 19 bonus points thanks to picking the Saints to win the Superbowl at the beginning of the regular season and the playoffs), two-time champion Jess was consistent through the tournament and finished with 31 points.
Congratulations, Jess! Would you like another t-shirt? Otherwise, I can randomly select an item from my house and mail it to you. It could be my car keys, it could be a pint of hot dog water, it could be anything. Hmm?
1. Jess: 31 points (this week +14)
2. Leftnut: 30 points (this week +30)
3. Adw: 20 points
4. MMMan: 16 points (this week +1)
5. Big BM: 14 points (this week +3)
6. MWC: 11 points
Thank you for your participation. Here at Badcock Industries, we look forward to providing the 2010 Uncapped NFL Pick'em in only seven months. Until then, nanu-nanu.
Larson's order said the league clearly violated Minnesota laws by failing to tell the players within three days that they had tested positive for a banned substance. The players were tested on July 26, 2008, but weren't told of the results until two months later."
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Friday, February 12, 2010
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
Monday, February 08, 2010
Sean Payton played to win. Going for it on 4th and goal was a brilliant, ballsy move. And it didn't work. But the Saints got their 3 points before halftime anyway.
The onside kick to start the second half was a brilliant, ballsy move. And it did work. When Manning finally touched the ball, around an hour had passed. Keeping that (talented) chump on the bench was the key to victory. When he finally threw that pick-six, it was the culmination of an extraordinary effort in game-planning and execution by the Saints defense.
The Colts were held to 17 points, tied for their second lowest output in meaningful games all year. The Saints did it without sacks, without getting burned on big blitzes, and without panic. In the second half, the Saints repeatedly bluffed a big blitz, then dropped eight into coverage. Manning was befuddled by the man/zone combinations and the unstoppable Colts only scored once in the second half.
And maybe, just maybe, that game-losing INT means that the sportsjack army will shut up about Manning being the best QB ever. At least until next year.
Only seven months to go!