Trash Talk: Old Man River Showdown

Um, we’re a bit tardy throwing up trash this week, seeing as how Pittsburgh already has a 31-17 lead on Cincinnati. Only, we’re not that tardy–the game in question is in the Big East, not the AFC North, where Pittsburgh has already lost twice to Cinci this year.

Florida v. Alabama. Anyway, the big game this weekend, if you’re a football fan rather than an NFL fan, starts in just a few hours. JimWhite has been gloating all year, and we’ll soon see whether his gloat continues. I’ll be rooting for ‘Bama, but I suspect JimWhite will still be gloating come dinner time. In rather curious news, there were reports last week that at least a few winning NFL coaches are determined to take Tebow in the first round, so maybe this won’t be the end of his illustrious football career. Any guesses on what winning NFL program wants him? Pittsburgh? Indy?

Vikings at Cardinals. Now, if you’re an NFL fan–and particularly if you’re bmaz–then the highlight of the weekend comes when Old Man River North, Brett Favray, heads down to the sunny clime of AZ to meet Old Man River South, Kurt Warner, in bmaz’ backyard. Of course, with so many prominent old farts in this game, it may come down to who actually plays. Warner is still questionable with a two-week old head injury. And Antoine Winfield may not be back yet for the Vikes, either (admittedly, Winfield is not quite as old as the other two). Meanwhile, Adrian Peterson apparently hasn’t gotten enough speed on the field this with Brett Favre around, so he took it upon himself to drive 109 MPH on surface roads in Minnesota (funny, he doesn’t actually get caught when he’s speeding on his day job). Then Bernard Berrian joined the fun. I think Old Man River North wins this, only because he’s playing more consistently than Old Man River South, and with the Cardinals this year, home field advantage doesn’t amount to much.

Dallas at Gents. Does anyone actually care about the NFC East anymore? Does anyone think these teams are more interesting than Favray’s team or Drew Fookin’ Brees’ team? Eh. I say the Gents start turning their season around with this one, if only because the NFC East seems destined to remain in turmoil right until the end of the season.

Titans at Colts. When you think about it, Vince Young has almost as long a win streak going as Peyton does at the moment, if you count last year’s playoffs and discount the 2007 playoffs. And someone is bound to beat the Colts–no matter how good Peyton is, the team as a whole just can’t compare with the NFC’s leaders. That said, I’ve been burned so many times by teams failing to put enough points up against Peyton in the first half (am I really the only one who has noticed the Colts don’t show up for the first half this season?), that I’ll say the Colts win this, if only to avoid jinxing the Titans.

Pats at Fins. Really, after the Saints kicked the living daylights out of the Pats last week, who really cares about the AFC East, either? And given that Joey Porter is questionable, it ruins one of the story lines I was looking forward to. You see, Brady got some press this week for his newly active role in the Player’s Union.

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is taking on a more active role in the NFL players’ union, becoming the team’s assistant players’ representative. And while many high-profile players avoid speaking publicly about labor issues, Brady says he’s glad to publicly support the efforts of NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith.

“I’m excited to see DeMaurice Smith heading our union. He’s a great thinker and what we need,” Brady told the Boston Herald. “What’s upcoming is challenging for the players. We’re very short-term focused. That’s the nature of the sport. We need to have a leader who sees the bigger picture.”

Brady said he believes strongly that the players deserve to be fairly compensated for putting their bodies on the line, mentioning former Bills player Kevin Everett, who suffered a serious spinal cord injury on the field, as a reason he thinks the union needs to fight for players’ rights.

And I thought it’d be interesting to see how Porter responded to Brady’s defense of players’ safety given Porter’s jawing about Brady’s whining for calls earlier this season. Then again, Porter couldn’t match that jawing with decent play the last time they played, so maybe it’s just as well. The Pats have yet to win a real away game, and the Jets just pulled to 6-6 with a win against Buffalo on Thursday. Which means Miami really needs this win for a chance to stay in the hunt to win another division in turmoil.

Big Upset. Call me crazy, but I think we’ll see at least one big upset this week, with one of the loser teams (Detroit, Oakland, KC, ‘Skins, or Cleveland) surprising the winning team they’re playing (Cinci, Stillers, Denver, Saints, Bolts, respectively). It’s just that time of the season. Obviously Oakland’s done that already a couple of times this year, but Heinz Field is tough. And, with Pittsburgh now up 38-24 in Heinz Field, the Stillers had better win against Oakland tomorrow if they want to avoid playing second fiddle to the local college team in Pittsburgh.

Update: Then again, with Cinci coming from behind to beat Pitt 35-34, maybe Heinz Field will be the place for some surprises this weekend.

223 replies
  1. freepatriot says:

    the brady bunch is fighting against statistical improbability this week

    teams that lose on the road on a monday night, and then travel the next week ???

    those teams usually lose

    the numbers are something like ‘1 win and 24 losses”

    which would give the Patriots a 4% chance of winning


    • emptywheel says:

      But how do you measure that against the number of times a BillBel team has lost twice in a row. (I know, I know, all rules about BillBel have been invalidated after the NOLA spanking last week.)

      Then again, there’s also the percentage chance that going for it on 4th and 3 from the fucking 30!!! Never mind.

      • sluggahjells says:

        It’s the end of his illustrious career.

        Picking Tebow in the first round (or even in the second round) as a quarterback will be a disastrous move for a franchise. Mel Kiper and Todd McShay will have a field day on that one.

        Unless of course, he is to be a pastor for a team. Then that would be a great pick indeed.

        In regards to the game, full preview to be over soon at TWD, but it shoudl be noted the massive loss for Florida of Carlos Dunlap, their defensive end. Dunlap’s poor decision to get caught for DUI is a huge blew on defense for the Gators considering how well he has played as the season has progressed.

        Even with the loss of Dunlap putting massive pressure on a defensive line that has been proven to be run on this year at times with him in the lineup, Greg McElroy just doesn’t do it enough at quarterback for many folks eyes to put Nick Saban’s side over the top here. The game will rest on his shoulders and whether he will be bold enough to go down the field today.

        I just don’t see that happening here, but possibly even bigger tonight in the FBS is whether Nebraska can throw the BCS in a tailspin and upset Texas in the Big 12 title game.

        More on that later.

      • freepatriot says:

        The statistical anomaly surrounding the game is fascinating

        but when is the last time a statistician scored a touchdown ???

        I wonder if BillBel can overcome the numbers (a true sign of greatness)

        or is he just a potzer who had a good run

        (duckin & runnin)

        PS: anybodywatch “the civil war” thursday night ???

        that dude blount is a fricken battering ram

        if he plays with that kind of intensity in the NFL, he’s gonna hurt somebody

          • freepatriot says:

            that punch dint hurt

            in the world of what ifs …

            if I was the Oregon coach, dudes’ football season would have been over. But some people are in to forgiveness an redemption, and I accept that

            an if I was the other coach, the “punchee” woulda sat out a game too

            sportsmanship ain’t what it used to be

          • randiego says:

            Norv is on a 6-game winning streak. The scuttlebutt is that he’ll get a 3-year extension.

            It’s really popular to bag on the guy, I get it all the time from non-Charger fans. But, it’s hard to beat his record in December (8-0 December in 2 years) and his post-season record in his two years in SD is 3-2. Not great, but better than a lot of other coaches. Marty Schottenheimer was 0-2, and couldn’t win a playoff game to save his life, especially against an overmatched Pats team in a game they dominated.

            • bmaz says:

              Go ahead. Give him a Charlie Weiss like extension. Do it now. Cause the second you do, the disaster that is Norval Turner will let fly.

              • randiego says:

                I didn’t say I was going to give it to him, but dude Charlie Weis? What the fuck has he done, except be a Belichick disciple?

                Seriously, make an argument. So we’ve haven’t seen the disaster yet, but we will once they extend him?

                What more is the guy supposed to do? He gets the blame when they’re 2-3, but when they’re 8-3 he still sucks. The players have continued to play hard for him.

                • bmaz says:

                  Yeah, you talk about yer family ties from the Lady RanDiego Texass branch, well my inlaws are native to the Potomoc Maryland area and made all the kids, including the daughters like my wife, learn and memorize Hail To The Redskins before they started kindergarden. Norval is a four letter word. So is that buttwipe Heath Shuler he was determined he could make into the second coming of Joe Montana.

                  • randiego says:

                    I lived in DC during Norv’s tenure. Norv isn’t the Redskin’s problem, that would be Dan Fucking Snyder. Isn’t Norv the last coach to take the ‘Skins to the playoffs? I was at the playoff game they won against the Lions that year, they lost in the next round at Tampa.

                    Seriously, I can tell you what I think Norv’s shortcomings as a coach are, but I’d like to hear what you think they are, other than “Norv is teh suck”. What ya got?

                    Btw, I lived on Bradley Blvd in Chevy Chase… just down from Potomac.

                    • bmaz says:

                      Why I’m sorry, the detailed basis for the conclusion is highly classified and “For Eyes Only”; the declassified public version available is “Norv is teh suck!”.

                    • randiego says:

                      Hah! You got nothin’.

                      Norv is very conventional, sometimes frustratingly so. His halftime adjustments leave a lot to be desired, and his play-calling is at times incredibly predictable.

                      During the winstreak, he’s been using misdirection a lot more effectively. They’ve also been using reverses and silly wildcat formations, at times against defenses that can’t cover their three 6’5″ wideouts, which makes me crazy. I would prefer they just push the ball downfield against defenses that can’t cover them.

                      There, that wasn’t so hard, was it counselor?

        • freepatriot says:

          I looked in Sports Illustrated this week

          turns out, the poor bastard’s name really is NORVAL

          an all this time I thought you was jes bein funny

          btw, Bama is EATIN the gators

          ROLL TIDE

    • BayStateLibrul says:

      And the Tuna will be hexing the Patsies from high above South Beach.
      Should be a good 1PM drinking game.

  2. BoxTurtle says:

    Cleveland will win just enough games to completely screw any decent draft positioning. This means they WILL win at least one more game and possibly two. It’s likely they’ll do it without scoring a touchdown.

    Boxturtle (Long suffering Browns fan)

  3. Jim White says:

    I think Alabama will have a hard time scoring on the Gator defense. On the other hand, defensive line was the only position the Gators could lose a star player without it being devastating. Dunlap cost himself a couple million on his signing bonus with the DUI, but I don’t see him hurting the team. They’ve run a rotation of a huge number of defensive linemen who’ve all played well.

    That’s news to me about winning programs being interested in Tebow in the first round. I had been assuming he’d go to Jacksonville in the third round or later, just because everybody disses his arm. With all the success of the “wildcat” for a lot of teams, Tebow brings a bit of that flavor with the added bonus of actually being a quarterback.

    Coaching carousel: Charlie Strong is rumored to be the top choice at Louisville, but I think Notre Dame should take a look at him, too. I don’t understand why Kansas hasn’t already hired Nolan Cromwell. He’s a Jayhawk and his Texas A&M offense really made Texas’ defense struggle. He has NFL experience as a defensive player and special teams coach. There’s no aspect of the game he doesn’t know. If they don’t hire him, they’re idiots. I’m not prejudiced at all from having been there when he was the QB in a huge upset of Oklahoma…

    For those who haven’t seen it yet, check out the cover of Golf Digest for January: Huge photo of Tiger as caddy for Obama with title story “10 Tips Obama Can Take from Tiger”, with additional stories “How to Outsmart Your Buddies” and “Power: Load It and Go!”. The jokes just write themselves there…

    What a disappointment at Ketchup Field. Pitt led the entire game, by as much as 21 points, and Cincy wins by 1 in the final minute.

    • sluggahjells says:

      Dunlap is a massive loss though in my mind Jim. He is the team’s best pass rusher (one of the nation’s premiere sack artists as well), and though they blitz the quarterback well with different blitz schemes, Dunlap is a massive part of that why. Despite the talent on their team, no one is better on the unit at getting in the backfield than Dunlap.

      It puts more pressure on cornerbacks Joe Hayden and Janoris Jenkins, who when attacked deep down the field this season have been burned on a few occasions, especially Jenkins. And if Major Applewhite is keen on that, which I will be disappointed if he isn’t, then they will go down the field with the trio of Jones, Maze, and Franks.

    • emptywheel says:

      Thing is I don’t remember whether it was Dungy or Peter King who said it, both of whom would know (and my vague memory it might be Dungy is why I included Indy as a possibility).

      Mind you, whoever it was didn’t say they would take Tebow as a QB. It sounded like there were two or three coaches, and the emphasis was on winning teams.

      So who needs the offensive help who can afford to think creatively?

    • BayStateLibrul says:

      The last QB the Pats drafted was Julian Edelman, the quarterback-turned-wide receiver out of Kent State…
      Julian is another Welker?

    • sluggahjells says:

      That comeback win could place them over TCU in the final BCS standings. And if Nebraska upset Texas tonight, all hell could break loose.

      • randiego says:

        That comeback win could place them over TCU in the final BCS standings. And if Nebraska upset Texas tonight, all hell could break loose.

        Oh please. That won’t happen. TCU could beat any of the top teams. The fact that they won’t get a shot at the title is total bullshit.

        • sluggahjells says:

          It shouldn’t, but it could happen.

          It certainly would have happen had Pitt not loss to West virginia last week. And with Pitt still ranked firmly in the top 20, it has a strong possibility of that happening.

          That was a very impressive win for Cincy on the road to win the Big East title. Their defense looked a lot better than most thought it would, especially in that second half where they actually shut them down.

  4. freepatriot says:

    Cincinnati over pittsboro for the third time in a season

    we gots our first undefeated BCS team


  5. bmaz says:

    I wonder if Bill Bel might not quietly be one of the ones interested in Tebow.

    Interesting thought above about Cincy overtaking TCU in the BCS rankings. You would at first blush think not based on all the accolades TCU has received (curiously much more than Boise State or Cincy so far and they are equally unbeaten), but with TCU at .8689 and Cincy at .8547 going into today’s game – and TCU having no more games – Cincy’s win over the highly ranked Pittsburgh might be enough.

    Back to Tebow, I don’t know why he could not be made into an NFL quarterback; he is tough as nails, smart enough, a hard worker and a proven leader. And say what you will about him (personally I find his religious schticht annoying same as I do with Kurt Warner), the guy is the epitome of a winner.

    • sluggahjells says:

      Danny Wueffrel, Rex Grossman were epitome of winners too.

      You can never say never about anyone in the future, as it is the beauty of sports (and life too).

      With that said, it will take a lot to make Tebow a good NFL quarterback though.

      He doesn’t line up from under center, his mechanics are shoddy, and he has a tendency to make some poor throws at times, especially as the Mississippi State game have shown.

      • scribe says:

        I haven’t enough fingers and toes to count all the great college QBs (and RBs and receivers and linemen and defenders) who amounted to nothing in the NFL.

        Brian Bosworth, anyone?

        And, it also never ceases to amaze me where the NFL scouts find exceptional players, even HOF players, toiling in obscurity at some cow college or whatever in the middle of nowhere.

        Jerry Rice (someplace obscure in Mississippi), Phil Simms (Morehead State, IIRC), Wayne Chrebet (Hofstra IIRC, had to make his own demo tape to get an invite to camp) and James “Silverback” Harrison (Kent State, undrafted) come to mind immediately.

        That’s why they pay them the bucks. But it remains quite true that what makes a great college player is not necessarily the same as what makes a great pro player. And, don’t forget: every defensive player in the NFL will be looking to deal that “welcome to the NFL, rookie ‘Superman'” hit on Tebow come August or September. All his sanctimony religiosity will be of little use then and there.

    • emptywheel says:

      Yeah, I was thinking BillBel too–he’s creative enough to find a way to use him.

      That said, BillBel doesn’t take QBs in the first round. Just doesn’t. So while he might be interested, I can’t see him being willing to take him first round.

      • sluggahjells says:

        By the way, it needs to be said, and I will write about this more tomorrow possibly.

        Belichick made a mistake trading Richard Seymour away, in order for him and Kraft to be cheap again. It showed on Monday with no pass rush on Brees.

        • emptywheel says:

          I’ve been saying that for some time. The lesson you take away from the 4th and 2 call is not that he made the right or wrong call–in that game. It’s that you cannot get rid of all your defensive leadership and expect to run a typical BillBel D.

          • bmaz says:

            I also think that as big of a loss as Seymour was athletically on the field, the combined loss of leadership by Bruschi, both on the field and in the lockeroom, is just as significant.

            • emptywheel says:

              Agreed. BillBel basically pushed his (previously ample) luck way too far in believing he could train someone up over the course of the first 6 games or so. And at this point, the D is getting worse, not better.

          • scribe says:

            Didn’t Baltimore have a 4th and 5 last Sunday night? And didn’t Collinsworth and Michaels note that the difference in the NFL between idiot and genius was whether the players made the first down?

            That said, it was amusing to hear Pats fans during the week post “4th and 2”. They sounded like Red Sox fans in the winter of 2003-2004 bemoaning Aaron f’g Boone, curses and hanging knuckleballs. I think it reactivated that old Boston-misery reflex – kind of like an old scar reopening.

            • sluggahjells says:

              Big difference was that it was in the middle of the field for Baltimore as Flacco mead the throw to Rice for the first down.

            • emptywheel says:

              THat may be true of other Pats fans. I have zero problem with his decision–it was the right one for the circumstances. I do have a problem with his decision to get rid of all his defense at once.

              And I still have the lurking suspicion that he will never be as good without Pioli and maybe even McDaniels.

      • 1970cs says:

        Tebow as a running QB in the NFL would end his career in about 4 years. He is not fast enough to be a reciever, and not big enough to be a TE. The only offense playing anything close to the Gators style is Miami with the wildcat.

        A team would have to remake the whole offense to incorporate Tebow. Fire Mangini, bring in Urban Meyer and Tebow to Cleveland, what have the Browns got to lose?

  6. scribe says:

    Kinda funny, the Cincy coach during the on-field post-game interview: “Go Huskers, Beat Texas.”

    The best part is, a friend is a Pitt grad and I get to harp on them gagging on their ketchup.

    As to my Stillers: frickin’ Steely McBeam’s been waving his kryptonite around and I have no hope for them. Something is going to happen such that they either don’t make the playoffs or get knocked out early (probably as a road team in Wild Card Week). It will be one of those low-probability events that never happen (except to the truly snakebit) and lead to a cascade of further screwups and mishaps culminating in a morale-destroying loss.

    As to the Gi-ants, intersting how they shuffled teir first- and second-team defensive alignments. Something tells me their locker room is a decidely unhappy place and has been for a while, i.e., the unhappy locker room was a cause and not an effect of their failings. That said, it would deeply please me if the Gi-ants were to beat the snot out of Tony Romo and Coach Cupcake. Not hoping for that (can’t put in the emotional investment), but it would be deeply pleasing to savor that result.

    • emptywheel says:

      You would be pretty cranky if you had to play for Coughlin, too.

      Gents would be a great team right now had they figured out a way to give Spagnuolo the HC job, IMO.

      • scribe says:

        The problem with canning Coughlin and elevating Spagnoulo is twofold. First, once Coughlin won the Super Bowl, the Giants were and are stuck with him until one (or even two) losing seasons. FWIW, the Maras tend to stick with coaches who’ve won for them regardless of the “sense” behind canning them. Coughlin would have been canned at the end of 2007 if he hadn’t won; there was a lot of sentiment for getting rid of him (including, IIRC, from sources close to the Maras) at the end of 2006.

        Second, for whatever reason, the Giants seem to need a Ray Handley to follow a Parcells (and totally make a mess), so they can rebuild totally. It’s the way they do things. Spagnoulo might be a good choice and have a chance after he gets some experience as head coach at St. Lou’s expense.

    • sluggahjells says:

      Yup, but the Giants are in serious trouble, especially thanks to the massive absences of Antonio Pierce and Michael Phillips.

      Those two are differences makers, and Pierce is the heart and soul of that defense. The Cowboys couldn’t have come at a better time to the Meadowlands.

  7. sluggahjells says:

    Florida is definitely messing Dunlap. No pass rush on McElroy at all.

    They are in serious trouble, as McElroy has taken the confidence from last week late against Auburn and has been very sharp.

    Saban is undefeated in “revenge” games so far in his tenure at Alabama.

    • bmaz says:

      How? Seriously? They are freaking SEC officials; I am surprised they didn’t also add on a vaporous unsportsmanlike penalty too.

  8. scribe says:

    Boise State deals an ass-whipping on New Mexico.

    Nice comment by the guys calling the USC game – “what else does Boise State have toprove? The fact is they are the winningest team this decade, and a lot of the “bigger” teams won’t take them on b/c the bigger teams have more to lose than just a game.”

    • sluggahjells says:

      What does Boise State have to prove?

      That they clearly are the baddest blue turf program in the nation’s history.

    • BayStateLibrul says:

      Horn those Frogs…
      TCU did the same last week.
      I’d rather be buried in a coffin that is painted in TCU’s purple and black,
      or is it a dark blue

  9. freepatriot says:

    University of Spoiled Children beaten at home by some guys you never heard of ???

    two words


  10. sluggahjells says:

    Devastating drive for the Tide there. Florida has it all to do now.

    They have to abandon the run here obviously, and that means they will get after Tebow. This won’t be a happy ending for the Gators, and this quarter will be a long one.

  11. Leen says:

    Over at Huff Po
    Snowe Rejoins Dems At Public Option Negotiating Table
    In a breakthough in Senate negotiations around a public health insurance option, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) sat down with centrist conservative Democrats for the first time Saturday since the bipartisan Gang of Six broke up shortly after returning from the August recess

          • sluggahjells says:

            Mh, I don’t know about next year. A lot of guys on defense can be gone from the team if they feel they are ready for the league, and though Bradley has talent, he is no T-squared obviously.

              • sluggahjells says:

                I just don’t see it beside Thompson….there is no one in the mode of Harvin and Murphy at the moment.

                And Bradley can throw, but he knows that he has to move in the pocket to make things happen. That is what we all know made Tebow as dangerous…..his ability to run.

  12. 4jkb4ia says:

    Tim Tebow will not get the Heisman simply because of name recognition. This must be called an unqualifiedly good thing. Otherwise I am paying little attention to this game.

  13. sluggahjells says:

    Well, the corrupt NCAA and BCS are hoping to the high heavens that Texas hold to form and win tonight.

    Nebraska needs their quarterback Zack Lee to not only make sound decisions, but key throws in order for them to pull off the upset here.

    Texas has been vulnerable a few times this year, and if Nebraska kept it close, we all know the pressure will mount.

    Mack Brown is a great guy, and I am happy for his success. But I think Bo Pelini’s team will pull of the upset, and send the NCAA and the BCS into a long forgettable 24 hours.

  14. randiego says:

    Nebraska is winning, but they aren’t very good. Two picks on plays where the receiver was blanketed with double coverage.

    Texas Tech beat Nebraska handily, and this isn’t Tech’s best year.

  15. alabama says:

    That Tebow boy was bawling his head off after the game, so something must have been bothering him a whole lot. He was babbling to some woman with a microphone, but I have no idea of what his problem was, because the audio was off in our local sports bar.

    Did his mommy forget to pick him up after sunday school?

  16. BayStateLibrul says:


    “THE Boston Red Sox, one of the world’s most famous baseball teams, are coming to Australia for a Major League game at the Sydney Cricket Ground – next year.”

    • Jim White says:

      For one thing, the incident that started the investigation that dumped Mangino from Kansas happened just before they played Colorado–the first game in the seven game loss streak to end their season from a 5-0 start and high ranking…

    • freepatriot says:

      somebody north of Oklahoma had to take the hit, an they got picked

      Go nebra … goddamned corn fed inbred brain dead assholes

      let me try that again

      Go nebra … goddamned corn fed inbred brain dead dirt farmer clod hopper assholes


      I jes can’t do it

      I ain’t got it in me to admit I’m rootin for nebraska that team

  17. orionATL says:

    The Alabama players

    Especially #23, god what a runner he was today,

    Did you notice the muscle definition on their arms?

    Wonder who their strength coach is?

    These guys out muscled Florida today –

    they ran over Florida today

    And I do mean ran OVER them.

    The story was a physically strong team vs a physically weaker team.



    But a game won On running over the other guys for four quick’s is about strength and conditioning.

    • Nola Sue says:

      I’m a longhorn for nearly 30 years. THe Texas/Nebraska match-ups have been one of my favorite parts of the creation of the Big 12. This is WAY too ugly. But these 2 teams (and their fans) respect each other, if nothing else. I don’t think any Horns counted these chickens…

      So I’m here by myself, kid’s up in bed, husband’s in China on biz, where I was IM’ing him play-by-play til he had to sign off. This is one of the most stressful games ever!!!!!

  18. sluggahjells says:

    Well, as I said up top at #80, Zack Lee could not make mistakes if Nebraska wanted to win the Big 12 tonight and send the BCS into total shock ways.

  19. sluggahjells says:

    As Michael DeCourcy said, “What is that I keep hearing about how the college football regular season “means more”? How come it means nothing at Cincy, TCU?”

  20. sluggahjells says:

    And Boise State.

    ESPN has already decided that Texas and Alabama will play each other…….which they will.

  21. bobschacht says:

    Brett Favray, heads down to the sunny clime of AZ to meet Old Man River South, Kurt Warner

    Sunny clime? You been paying attention to the weather reports? Sunday evening partly cloudy, but storm front moving in on Monday. We’re being warned about bow-coup snow up here in the mountains.

    OK, you’re free to brag about sunny climes as long as you restrict yourself to Sunday daylight, but by evening things could start to change.

    And as for the Old Man of the South, he’s been splitting time in practice with Matt Leinart this week, and who will start will apparently be a game-time decision. My bet is that the Old Man of the North will be in better shape than the Old Man of the South. Minnesota should win this one.

    Bob in AZ

    • PJEvans says:

      Given what it felt like this morning, I’m expecting snow here in LA. They’re predicting 60 percent chance of rain tomorrow night; low tonight of 38, high tomorrow of 57 – definitely winter.

  22. emptywheel says:

    You know, except for a dusting we keep getting nightly, we still haven’t had any real snow here in MI.

    Looks like we’re the only ones. Who knew MI was the new balmy paradise?

  23. BayStateLibrul says:

    Rumor — Brady gives Miami the finger?

    “It didn’t seem like much when the Patriots added “finger” next to “right shoulder” next to Tom Brady’s name on Friday’s injury report. A lot of people think something much deeper is going on here. has some details and speculation regarding what they’re calling “Fingergate.” The most interesting part is the fact that several online betting services went so far as to remove the betting line for the Patriots-Dolphins.”

  24. randiego says:

    Today’s Charger-Cleveland match-up has an interesting side story: LT is 56 yards rushing (12,257) short of Jim Brown (12,312), who obviously played his whole career in Cleveland.

    Their careers stats are closely matched:
    JB: 9 years, 12,312 yds rushing w/106 TDs, 2499 yds receiving w/20 TDs
    LT: 9th year, 12,257 yds rushing w/134 TDs, 3846 yds receiving w/15 TDs

    Yards per carry, Brown 5.2, LT 4.4

    Fumbles, Brown 57, LT 27

    That fumbles stat is really amazing to me.

    • bmaz says:

      “The Bolts must beware the always dangerous KC Chiefs”

      This bit about the Brownies motivation sounds like a replay of that infamous KC hedging two or three weeks back. I call it the “Norval Hedge”. See, here in Cactusland, such hedging is a lot easier; all you have to do is weekly say “the Cardinals suck”. Even after last years miracle playoff run, such a statement is almost always met with knowing nods of agreement

      • randiego says:

        What are you talking about?

        One, NFL coaches are always worrying about complacency in their players in “trap” games against inferior teams. But suddenly you’ve only noticed that it happens in SD. What would YOU do against Cleveland?

        Two, the rivalry of teams in the AFC West is a special thing, which goes back to the formation of the AFL, which you have no knowledge of apparently. They’ve all been playing each other for 50 years, and if you think KC and the Raiduhs aren’t totally pumped when they play against the Chargers well I can’t help you.

        Oh yeah, and KC did beat Pitt a couple weeks ago. The Raiduhs beat the Iggles, so crappy AFC West teams have a few upsets.

        • bmaz says:

          What I am saying is the Bolts, for all the hedging, actually have at least some history of some winning. Every now and then anyway. The Cards have a history of abject failure. My hedging is more real than your hedging! I claim victory on the hedging front! (Again, with the Cards, you take any victory you can get).

          • randiego says:

            Gotcha, and then of course today KC is totally laying down at home against the division rival Broncos. KC has always been such a tough place to play, kind of sad to see.

  25. BayStateLibrul says:

    New Psychological disease for the Patsies:

    Fourth and One Remorse.

    Fourth and inches… punt from the 40…
    Fourth and one at Miami’s 10, went for it and missed.

    Pat’s 14-10 at the half.

    Every fourth down decision is in Bill’s head…
    We need a shrink…

  26. bmaz says:

    Hahahahaha! In a break during the Jags/Texans game, the Jags mascot, pretending to be a Tiger, was running around on the field being chased by a blonde with a golf club!

      • bmaz says:

        Man, I dunno, but it is getting pretty ugly. The hens are coming out of the woodwork at the rate of at least one a day. He may lose some fans, he may gain some others that didn’t like his purity before, but if he keeps being Tiger on the golf course he will likely be just fine as far as the sports and marketing go. It is, however, hard to see how his marriage survives. Not saying his wife is totally blameless in this bizarre deal, who knows what their relationship really has been like – clearly not what everyone pictured it being – but jeebus, how can they ever have a real relationship after this? From the family and kids aspect, this story is really sad and tragic. Just goes to show that the grass really is not greener in the gated communities; there is just a hell of a lot more money laying around to give that appearance.

        • randiego says:

          The question that no one ever addresses is not how their marriage can survive (which is a valid question), but how any marriage can survive when one partner is constantly on the road from place to place to place, with children at home, and therefore a spouse that can’t be traveling alongside.

          To make something like that work, you’d have be pretty special.

          • Petrocelli says:

            My Granny always said, “I don’t care where your Grandpa gets his appetite, as long as he eats at home !”

        • Petrocelli says:

          Perhaps “Swinging Wood on other Fairways” was not as clear as it could have been on the Prenup …

          I don’t see how Wifey stays in the marriage without looking like an opportunist, if the marriage contract is reworked to give her more $$$ and ‘power’.

          Then again, I think we can all agree that if Tiger was a blue collar worker, she prolly wouldn’t be with him in the first place.

        • LabDancer says:

          Woods just keeps on breaking records: Joe Louis could only manage a Bum of the Month club.

          Stilt’s mark lacks documentation; Tiger’s will benefit from a vastly inter-connected communications technology of modern total surveillance.

    • bmaz says:

      Unpossible; the Pats “do not ever lose two games in a row” according to the experts.

      The Who Dats might be in a spot of trouble it seems.

        • bobschacht says:

          That was the game, right there. The center for the ‘Skins field goal was bad– the holder had to rise up to catch the center, enough to disrupt the timing, resulting in no FG, no win for the ‘skins.

          The ‘skins played a brilliant game for 99% of the game, lose it in the last minute.

          Well, the Saints deserve it. For the sake of Katrina, they deserve it.

          Bob in AZ

    • scribe says:

      Another manifestation of “Cheaters never prosper”.

      Actually, it was more like “Fourth and a football-length.”

      We will continue to see one-yard or two-yard fourth-down conversions dancing, like so many sugarplums, before Belicheat’s eyes for the rest of the season. When his psychosis from past failures subsides, he’ll bite, only to be stoned again and get even crazier. More to the point, though, is New England’s utter futility on third-down conversions. They were 0/5 in the second half today at one point, and are only converting something like 44 percent of their thirds this season. They keep trying for the big play, the showy play, the 81-yard TD pass into triple coverage, and keep flubbing off-tackle right on third-and-one for two and a cloud.

      But, like other karmic things, it’s not really their fault. It’s the Universe evening things out. Because cheaters never prosper.

      • bmaz says:

        Naw, it is all Giselle’s fault. Brady needs to get back out there with Tiger to get his mojo back. A high class slumpbuster is needed!

        • scribe says:

          Well, it wouldn’t be the first time Brady screwed around on a chick after knocking her up, would it now?

          But I csn’t see him getting anything much hotter than what he’s already got at home, so the who to hook up with question winds up being bigger than whether to.

          • Petrocelli says:

            If you think the Scandinavian girls are tough, try crossing a Brazilian woman and live to tell about it …

            … not that I have any experience in the matter …

            [messaged from an undisclosed location, hostile to Amazonian women]

            • scribe says:

              I have dated a Swedish woman, for an extended period of time. And, yes, she was hotter than hell. I saw her, just walking down the sidewalk, stop NYC traffic. I also saw guys turn around after passing her, to see some more. And she was fully clothed, too.

              She went on to someone else and, to make a long story short, I was not unhappy to see her go.

              Remember, Scandanavians were once Vikings. One of the untold secrets about Scandanavian women is that they still are.

              I see nothing wrong wth Tiger catting around. IMHO, one of the prime reasons for going through all that one goes through to be a first-class pro athlete (or other celebrity, for that matter) is that it brings an astonishing number of really hot women your way, throwing themselves at you. Whether or not that game is worth the candle for the guy is another story entirely. But as to Ms. Nordgren, she knew what she was getting into and if she didn’t her ignorance was her own fault.

              • Petrocelli says:

                Perhaps it’s the Canadian Water, but the Nordic women up here are very mild, although truly gorgeous.

                Amazonian women, OTOH appear to be impervious to Canadian Water …

                • scribe says:

                  They only look mild – that just means you haven’t gotten close enough to really find out.

                  Think “coral snake”.

                  • Petrocelli says:

                    I’ve been around them since I was 9; even dated a few …

                    I don’t doubt you, that the Nordic women in NYC or Europe are more fiery than those in Canuckistan.

          • bmaz says:

            See that is why he needs to pal around with Tiger so he can learn that it just doesn’t matter how hot your wife at home is. I mean, seriously, Elin Nordegren is enough to cause global warming all by herself, but look at what El Tigre sought out.

            • Petrocelli says:

              These days, Car Leases outlast most relationships …

              *Pats self on back for inserting Car Talk into Trash Thread*

  27. Petrocelli says:

    58 yd FG try for the Saints, to win it all. 7 seconds remaining.

    Field goal attempt is short … we’re going to OT.

  28. Petrocelli says:

    Contentious fumble ruling … in American Rules, does 1 elbow down mean that the play is over, if the Legs are in the air ?

  29. freepatriot says:

    in other news, pittsboro can’t win without Palamalu

    and never bet on a monday night road loser that travels the next week (jes don’t do it)

    yardbirds and the whiners, tied at 7

    I’m gonna go sort my socks or sumtin

    PS do we have any new info ??? is the great geezer of the south gonna strap it on tonight ???

  30. sluggahjells says:

    Well, after these hurdles this week, I think it going to take something really bad from the Colts and the Saints to lose.

    Only the Jaguars can challenge the colts on paper to me, but this is the NFL.

    Any given Sunday.

  31. randiego says:

    Brady Quinn has already had his career day against the Bolts defense, and we’re only halfway through the second quarter. But the Browns are the Browns, they’re losing 10-7 and just fumbled the ball in the red zone.

  32. bmaz says:

    I am sorry to report that I have had to fire Marcy and ban her from Trash Talk. That intentional jinxing of the Skins in their moment of need was heinous! Who is gonna help out the Geezer and hang a loss on the Aints now??

    Ugh. And aaaarrrrggghhh.

    • scribe says:

      G-Men salvage my Sunday; My old favorite “Whoever’s playing Dallas” comes through.

      Mmmm. Hot chocolate time.

  33. 4jkb4ia says:

    The Giants really needed that game, but this was an iffy day because Miami won. The Jets will have to get past them for any postseason. And Miami probably has to beat Jacksonville to help the Jets, too.

    • rosalind says:


      Andrew Luck, the redshirt freshman quarterback who helped Stanford to an 8-4 regular season and a Sun Bowl berth, probably won’t play in the bowl game because of a broken finger on his throwing hand.

  34. bmaz says:

    Why do the Cardinals pick now to be competent? This is why I cannot warm up to them; they can’t even lose at the right times.

    Ouch! Roidney Harrison and Tony Dungy just loaded the bus with lead weights and backed over Tony Romo for going to Vegas instead of doing something unnamed that he was not, I take it, required to do. Wonder if Romoeo hooked up with one of Tiger’s girls on The Strip?

  35. bobschacht says:

    Wha’ happened? The Arizona Cruds Cards are beating Minnesota??? Just got back from a Christmas party, and have to get caught up with the action.

    Cheese, the Old Man of the South is really sticking it to the Old Man of the North!

    Bob in AZ

  36. emptywheel says:

    Hey, remember that guy Brett Favre who was throwing picks at the end of the season in NY last year? He was lost, but I think I’ve found him. He’s just lucky he’s thrown just one.

    • bobschacht says:

      The Brett Favre of those other teams tried to do too much. That’s when he started throwing interceptions. Same thing is happening now in the second half– he’s trying to do too much, too fast. Result: interception. Minnesota really looks off balance.

      Bob in AZ

    • freepatriot says:

      ya better watch out

      ya better not cry

      ya better not pout

      I’m tellin you why

      santa farve is comin to town

      so that makes 2 touchdowns and FIFTEEN INTERCEPTIONS in December an January of the past four seasons

      jes sayin

      (duckin an singin)

  37. bmaz says:

    The competent, well coached, physically imposing play of the Cardinals is simply an overmatch for the Minnesota Vikings.

    In other news, Hell is freezing over…….

    • john in sacramento says:

      Yea, the Cards outplayed, out-coached, and outworked the Vikings in every phase of the game

      Favre was confused. AD had no running lanes. Both lines played like they were in quicksand. The def secondary couldn’t make a tackle to save their life (I’ve talked about this before). And the Cards punched em in the mouth while they were at it

      Congrats Cards

      I’m not so much disappointed in the result, (I knew it was coming) as the loss of EJ Henderson (hope he gets well)

  38. bobschacht says:

    TV commentators saying that the Cards defense is confusing Favre. One would think that the Old Man of the North has just about seen everything by now, but I guess not.

    Bob in AZ

  39. bobschacht says:

    Um, have all the Bidwells been kidnapped, and are they being held at an undisclosed location? I can’t think of any other reason that better accounts for the fact that for the past two years, the Arizona Cardinals have actually become a decent football team for the first time in recorded history.

    Bob in AZ

  40. phred says:

    Missed the games and the thread, but simply cannot restrain myself from a drive-by to say December has arrived. The Cards must have taken a peek at the calendar before the game and known they had it in the bag ; )

    P.S. Go Pack!

    • john in sacramento says:

      Even though they’re in the same division as the Vikes, I hope the Packers win

      Not sayin’ I want the Vikings to tank the last 4 games and let the Pack take the division ;-) just wouldn’t mind if you got one of the wildcards

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