The NFL Draft 2021 and Portuguese GP

Down to the stretch in the NBA, and a week from now the order will be pretty fascinating. Some fun stuff in MLB, what with the Cubs Rizzo striking out MVP Frederick Freeman. Both were incredible sports about the encounter, and it was great. But MLB is early still.

So, to the NFL Draft. One seems sure to the Jags with Trevor Lawrence, and two, seemingly so to the Jets Jets Jets. Three, however, seemed to be either Mac Jones or Trey Lance to the Niners. But Mr. Discount Doublecheck threw a monkey wrench into the equation by saying he wants out of the Packers. That is a real monkey wrench. The Patriots still need a future at QB; might it be Jimmy G, might they move up for a rook? Nobody knows what Bill Bel will do. Suffice it to say that tonight’s first round will be pretty exciting. After that, the draft far less so.

As to the Portuguese Grand Prix, well, it should be interesting. I honestly thought Lewis Hamilton was done at the Emilia-Romagna GP at Imola when he went off into the kitty litter for what seemed like an interminable amount of time. But Lewis is Lewis, and he covered to not only place in the points, but finish in P2. Insane, but that is quintessential Lewis. So, despite all that, Hamilton still leads the Drivers Championship by a point over Verstappen, 44 to 43, with McLaren’s Norris an admirable, but yet distant, third at 27.

So, on to Portugal, what will happen? The weather looks okay at Potimao for the maiden cruise of the F1 “sprint qualifying”. As you might guess, I am not crazy about “sprint qualifying” for F1. The problem with F1 has been with lack of field competitiveness as to equipment, not drivers or qualification stunts. This TV stunt bullshit is not the F1 I grew up with. And it sucks.

So, let’s get it started with the NFL Draft, the Portuguese GP and any and everything else.

106 replies
  1. Peterr says:

    I got a good laugh out of the Kroenke’s (owners of the Rams) and the Glazer’s (owners of Tampa Bay) getting handed their asses by the fans of the English Premier League teams that they own (Arsenal and Manchester United, respectively) when they and other big owners tried to create an European Super league filled with so-called big name teams that could not be relegated (a la the American sports league model).

    Never thought I’d see the day that a Kroenke would give a public apology in front of cameras.

      • Peterr says:

        When they realized they can’t just pick up and move a Premier League club to another city for a bunch of money, they figured “Hey, let’s move the damn league.”

        Uh, nope.

    • BobCon says:

      It was impressive how quickly the players saw it for what it was — trying to set up a system like the NFL where league membership is fixed and established owners can set up a salary cap.

      I think the way JPMorgan also screwed up the stakeholder analysis and thought they could jam it through like a typical IPO by only thinking about the owners is hilarious.

  2. BobCon says:

    What is going to be wild about this year’s rookie class is how many players either sat out their last year of college or are waiting to turn pro next year. So NFL teams are stuck with a thin draft pool and are lacking a lot of the usual film and observations on prospects.

    There are going to be a lot of odd trades, and players are going to be going in a lot of different places in the draft than a lot of predictions.

  3. Eureka says:

    No one knows how these things will work out, but I was none too pleased to see Mr. DD’s trending news earlier as it might mean one fewer QB filling an early slot (might end up fortuitous, who knows?). ESPN apparently just now says Packers are acknowledging they might have to deal him.

    Cousin Sal: “If the Nets sign Aaron Rodgers I’m going to be so pissed.”

    • Peterr says:

      Cousin Sal’s anger if that happened would be nothing compared to Bmaz if BilBel gets the Patsies to sign Rodgers.


      • Eureka says:


        Saved by* the first-round coming of Tom Brady (if one is to believe the punditry on Mac Jones).

        *and a whole chain of events that may have started with Mr. DD himself — or the timing & strength of his announcement:

        at # 9. Denver (rumored to be aggressively involved in a deal for Rogers) takes Surtain instead of a QB.

        Cowboys, long rumored to have wanted Surtain, are to pick 10th. In a change of pattern and practice, Jerry does what’s right for his team’s needs and trades down w/ #12 Eagles so Eagles can draft Smith ahead of the #11 Giants. Giants, with their target Smith gone — and in another shocking move, as Gettleman never trades down — trade back with BilBell and the rest is history.

        It did turn out to be fortuitous (if dependent on low-likelihood events, and from my POV as opposed to a grander comedy which may have ensued) after all!

        Also a belated THANK YOU to bmaz for putting up the Trash.

        • Eureka says:

          UGH (strike that) da Bearss did the Giants trade to get their QB. But the ”extra” QB leftover from Denver’s decision is what helped leave a QB for the Pats and that was the point before my story Toonced off that side cliff…

  4. Ralph H white says:

    Great to see Freddie Freeman and Rizzo having so much fun and showing that at the core baseball is a game and not to be taken seriously. I’m from Atlanta and Freddie is a great He is one of those athletes that kids can aspire to be like without having to worry about his off-field behavior. We have been cursed over the years, with our professional sports teams in Atlanta, with a litany of woes, mishaps and outright choking by management and players that is too long to elaborate on in detail. Taking John Koncak over Karl Malone in the 1985 NBA draft and losing the largest 4th quarter lead in superbowl history to the hated Patriots and Brady are but a couple tales in this scroll of horror.
    I was fortunate to be part of one of the most interesting and intriguing years in Hawks history. I roomed with Pistol Pete in 1971, when we were both rookies for the team. Pete, a “great white hope”, the leading scorer college BB history, is drafted by Atlanta to join an almost all black, veteran squad that had been together for several years. He signed a three year $1.4 million contract, which I believe was the largest in professional sports at the time, and maybe ever. Tumultuous is as close as I can get in describing that season in one word. The Hawks were a slow, disciplined team that had been successful playing their style featuring some really good NBA players…Lou Hudson, Walt Hazzard, Bill Bridges and Walt Bellamy. Toss in Pete’s hell for leather, non-stop, no-look pass, undisciplined game and you have the proverbial recipe for disaster. Our coach, Richie Guerin, deserves some kind of award for somehow holding that Shakespearian debacle of a team into the playoffs.

    • BobCon says:

      That is great stuff. The Hawks aren’t bad this year, by the way, as long as Trae Young comes back healthy. He’s a really fun player and has room still to grow.

  5. bmaz says:

    Wilson seems like a good kid that is really just growing into his own. Since Namath, though, the Jets are killers of such QB talent.

  6. bmaz says:

    Is he Mahomes Jr? Not sure SF is wrong with taking Lance, but do they then need to keep Jimmy G for at least a year?

    • Peterr says:

      Don’t know about your first question, but the local sports talk folks in KC point to Alex Smith and Mahomes here as the logic to say that SF needs to keep Jimmy G for a year minimum. At the same time, they were not sure SF folks believe that, and would not be surprised if they didn’t keep him in town.

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        Niners fans are VERY happy, and want to see Jimmy stay around till Lance learns everything, and can slowly develop.

  7. Eureka says:


    Adding: no way Jerruh doesn’t take the flashiest player left. He can’t stop himself from packing that offense. I will be pleased to be wrong, then endure this all over again when Giants pick.


      • Eureka says:

        Howie wants to keep his job… this city will riot if he takes anyone else (NOT ANOTHER QB YET)

        While we’re waiting: experts claim that we’re all the worse off for lacking “small talk”: the predictable fodder we know and love to hate. I warned the neighbors the other night to watch for a happy scream or mad one … of course no such warning is necessary in Iggles land (strikes me that a serial murderer could roam freely during sports events and no one would be the wiser)

  8. drouse says:

    As far as I know the sprint qualifying isn’t going to debut until Silverstone which is the 10th race in the season. After all, they only settled on the (mostly financial)details last week. Your point about the qualitative gap in cars is well taken. This year the gap between, let’s say, the top three in the mid-field and the leaders is much smaller. This is true even across the whole field, though not to such a great extent. So a lot more pressure for Bottas and Perez. I mean, what was Bottas doing in a position to be challenged by a Williams car? This week I’m looking forward to the battle between McLaren and Ferrari. Who knows, maybe Gasly and Tsunoda will find their balance and join the fray.

    • Jon_NeedsToDifferentiateTheirName says:

      Bottas gets ALL of Mercedes bad luck and mistakes. He’s a lightning rod. He also has the misfortune of being teamed with a driver who’s easily the equal of Stewart, Senna, Clark or Fangio. Russell really shouldn’t have driven into Bottas, in a situation of no practical significance. And Russell found his own level of pain and misfortune, when he subbed for Hamilton last year – in addition to showing just how good he is, and just how dominant the Mercedes are. I give Bottas a great deal of credit, for his equanamity in what has to be an incredibly difficult second banana role.

      • Peterr says:

        I can imagine a number of defensive linemen and linebackers licking their chops at seeing Tebow line up at the end of the offensive line rather than behind it.

        • Peterr says:

          All of them, Katie.

          He might line up as a TE, but in their eyes he’d still be a QB, and linemen and linebackers love nothing more than hitting QBs.

          It wouldn’t show up on the stat line as a sack, but it would be satisfying nevertheless.

        • Eureka says:

          And for all this, he is interfering with the aged TE market. I had wanted to keep Julie Ertz in the impending Eagles-Ertz divorce but let them enjoy their lives together, we still have Carli Lloyd (and if things continue as they have in Japan with the virus, she may miss that last Olympics for which she had deferred her ~planned NFL-kicker career).

          Re @ 11:17 AM: Every time a non-stat stat is born, an analytics guru gets their wings… thus too a new betting line to BOLO should Tebow gets his TE start.

  9. Molly Pitcher says:

    TREY LANCE a Niner !!!! Tremendous pick !!! SO happy !! FYI, Jimmy G immediately got Trey’s number and called him, welcoming him to the team.

  10. joel fisher says:

    Rogers did the Pack a favor by announcing the split now. After 2021 he could walk and they get nothing.
    He’ll go somewhere and the Packers get a bundle.

    • bmaz says:

      Think he and his fiancé (seriously, how wonky is Rodgers to have ended up with Woodley, who is very smart and cool) really want to be in California. Hard to see that now though. Niners made huge trade up to take Trey Lance and will likely keep Jimmy G around long enough to school young Lance up. LA traded for Matt Stafford who still has many good years left. Bolts have Justin Herbert, who seems quite entrenched now. Lot of other possibilities, like NE, took QBs in the first round and now seem unlikely.

      So where is left that makes sense for Rodgers? To my eye, either Denver or the Rayduhs. Vegas is closer to LA (actually pretty close all things considered!) but they are dysfunctional. Denver looks the best choice at this point, but who knows? Miami might be in play, but does Rodgers want to be on the east coast? Plus the Fish drafted the perfect receiver for Tua, so looks like he is their guy.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Elway’s a Stanford guy (I was actually on the field surface for The Play, keeping the fans off) and Rodgers an Old Blue. I’m not so sure Denver is run that much better than Vegas so I think the Team Formerly Known as Oakland gets Rodgers to push Derek Carr (and replace him, who are we kidding here).

        • Peterr says:

          Rodgers is not going to go somewhere to be a backup, or to create a QB battle. He wants to be — and be treated as — The Man.

      • joel fisher says:

        I see 2 near term scenarios:
        –1) He goes somewhere he likes–as you say, those places are pretty well qbed up–and the Pack gets more; or
        –2). He goes somewhere, anywhere, as a 1 year rental and the Pack gets lots less. It seems he doesn’t have a no-trade clause.
        Go out 4.5 months and see what the various DLs do to the knees of the starters, he could be a hot property.

    • Rick Ryan says:

      He’s still under contract through 2023. If he were serious about wanting out, he’d have made that clear before the start of free agency, when there were more openings and more resources in play. Even if he had a specific destination in mind, they would need as much room as possible to maneuver for the pieces they needed to make it happen.

      No, this means either he and another team had been trying to do exactly that ll offseason but the Packers wouldn’t go for it so they tried a hail mary (ahem), saber-rattling in the press in hopes it might jump-start the failed negotiations (presumably before those precious, tantalizing draft picks became so-much-less-exciting actual players) – or he wants a bigger extension than they’ve offered him so far, and he let them know by shouting from the tallest pulpit he’ll get before next offseason. It’s the only real leverage any player has, other than the Le’veon Bell Maneuver, and that’s untenable at Rodgers’ age.

      The ESPN report is phrased as “[Rodgers] has told some within the organization that he does not want to return to the team, league and team sources told ESPN” – 2 steps removed from Rodgers himself, with enough plausible deniability to go around with every possible party when they wash their hands of this. I expect we’ll either hear about a new extension agreed around the start of training camp, or a report that negotiations had ended, teeing up a trade in early 2022.

  11. scribe says:

    An interesting draft, most of which I slept through. Day after Pfizer shot #2, y’know. (Clock ticking down to official “Free Breather” status.)

    A bunch of things seem to have come to pass which the pundits had predicted.

    Niners picking a QB.

    This had been clearly telegraphed since the minute they traded up to 3, the only question being which QBs they’d have to pick from. Jimmy G’s biggest problem (beyond throat tightness in the last quarter of the Super Bowl, for which it seems he has not been forgiven) has been availability. I also think there’s some level of disconnect in the Niners’ organization similar to that which erupted yesterday between Discount Jeopardy Host Doublecheck and the Pack. That was building since the minute they spent a high pick on a replacement QB. Probably since before – that kind of pick doesn’t just pop up out of nowhere. How that scenario plays out, and how the Niners’ plays out, only time will tell. Right now the Pack is in the “we’re not trading him, no how” mode, which I view as trying to plump his trade value. I could see something along the lines of the Herschel Walker Minny-Dallas trade boiling up. Which would be funny indeed.

    Iggles picking a WR.

    Big surprise, not. They had a craptacular passing game last year. At least they picked a good one to ruin. This team needs a new owner. Rosenman injects himself into everything, taking authority away from subordinates and ruining organizational effectiveness on a every-level, every-cubicle scale. And for every Carson Wentz, who manages to get himself run out of town, there are surely 4 or 5 other stars on that team who want out from under the management nightmare – a HBS case study in what NOT to do, how not to run a football team – that is the Iggles.

    Stillers picking a big running back – Najee Harris – indeed, most of the predictions I saw that went that deep had them picking the guy they actually picked.

    Still, the Stillers picking this RB in the 1st round – arguably the best player available even though they’d telegraphed that he was the guy they wanted – raises the question of why Watt the Youngest got like one carry all season and in a game where the result didn’t matter anyway, and spent the rest of his time on special teams. Watt the Youngest is a prototypical fullback – something the Stillers desperately needed last year – who would have nicely complemented the now-departed James Conner by plowing the road for him. (Translating to Old Miami – Csonka, Kiick and Mercury Morris as the speed back.) I know. Tomlin is an inflexible idiot when it comes to in-game decision-making. So now they spend their first round pick on a guy they arguably already have on their roster. If I was running their draft I would have been looking for offensive line help to replace Pouncey and/or working up to ultimately replace Villanueva. (5 years Army service plus 1 year plus on the practice team before his first pro snap – he’s getting old. But I continue to maintain the Stillers’ best 1st round draft pick in recent years has been the one they traded to Miami for Minka Fitzpatrick.

    Patsies pick a QB.

    There was a lot of speculation, late in the process, that the Patsies were going to draft a QB. Between coping with the idea of Cam Newton as their QB, dreams of getting Jimmy G back, and Brady winning in TB, it seemed an inconsolable fan base was ready for this. More to the point, it seems a deeply inflamed ego resides in the carcass of Cheatin’ Bill, one which wants desperately to prove “I’m a good coach. I can win games. I don’t need the GOAT to win games. I Really don’t. I know my record in New England without the GOAT is just like my record in Cleveland. But I’m a good coach. I really am.”

    Cheatin’ Bill is like 67. He probably has about 3 or 4 years, maybe 5, left before he just gets too old to be doing this head coaching thing. Pete Carroll is older and running on fumes. So now precisely the pocket passer Cheatin’ Bill likes just happened to fall all the way to the Patsies. And now he can mold him, shape him and win without the GOAT. He has been slowly accumulating parts and pieces to fit around a better pocket passer – Cam has been an interim place-filler – and now this.

    Thing is, the existence of the rookie contracts (4 years with an option 5th) has changed the calculus around drafting. I heard an interesting discussion on the radio a week or two ago, in which the talker cited the 4-year contractual structure as allowing pro teams to treat players even more like dirt – building their teams like they are college teams. In college, your stars graduate in 3 or 4 years, and then you replace them. This is a given. Now, in the pros in addition to the always-uncertain ground under players feet – where you can be cut any time and those big contract numbers are so many cloud-castles – teams have recognized the average career of 2 years means they have to replace just about half a team every year. So the owners colluded to control the rookie contracts, limiting the pay and setting the same time terms. Now there’s no benefit to a player to prefer one team over another, nor is there any opportunity for the player to bargain. He has no power – take it or leave football. No need to recruit players.
    For the teams, there is no need to go out to some trailer park in Podunk and persuade the players’ mothers and fathers to have their son attend State instead of Tech and trust you with his future. Here, the players are beating down the doors to come play for you.

    Now, look at the Jimmy G. and Aaron Rodgers situations through that lens, where the teams get a stud QB on a rookie contract, ride him hard for 4 years, then insult him and toss him aside. The Pack, with last year’s pick, and the Niners, with yesterday’s, are doing just that. Let someone else pay for Rodgers’ past performance or the contract the Patsies gave Garop. And then the media shills will go on about how Rodgers is a diva the Pack have been trying to push out for years and the listeners will gobble it up. When in reality it’s management cutting costs.

    Frankly, the way some of these right-piece-falling-just-right events seem so improbable as to be the fruit of collusion. Not saying it is, just saying it seems far more likely than random chance. It would seem that all the media coverage, and the leaking, is a backdoor manner of communicating and colluding between the teams.

    And the fans eat up the pageantry of Draft night, which looks more and more like a high-tech slave auction every year.

    • bmaz says:

      Philly got a hell of a receiver, but, yeah, they may screw it up. Harris seems like a great choice for the Stillers, but yeah they still need some OL help. Jones is almost certainly exactly who BB wanted. And he does fit their mold, so we shall see. And, yes, you are right about the nature of the 4/5 rookie contracts.

      • scribe says:

        Philly area papers are playing up that Hurts helped persuade Iggles management to pick his college teammate. Big vote of “Hurts is our guy”, say the papers.
        We’ll see how this works out.

    • Eureka says:

      @ 5:51: Interesting — while I’d like to see Hurts as an unfettered QB1 (and let’s not even have to get into Flacco, a Local Area Man contract of convenience) — I haven’t gotten that impression (of emphasis) from the sports journalists. (I did see that Eagles PR set up a Smith-Hurts reunion at NovaCare, and that clip on the news.) It’s more like Roseman (Lurie) actually followed the board / scouts’ advice and did well with trades to boot. No small accomplishment given recent drafts where they’ve “outsmarted” everyone. I think they’re sick of the bad publicity which rides with failure and, maybe contra the shallowness of this year’s draft, will finish up pretty well all things considered.

      For similar and other reasons, I think the Eagles are on the upswing. While I wouldn’t exactly submit “interfering owner/ paranoid-tyranical GM” to Old Takes Exposed: (1) they do have a history of some course-correction in the mirror of misery; and (2) the new coaches are so young that they wouldn’t feel the oppression of micromanagement as … thoroughly as Pederson, (Staley,) et al. (Schwartz having been more left to his own devices with the defense, which doesn’t produce the big pass play excitement and point totals Lurie wants.) We’ll be able to tell in short order if Sirianni (is allowed to) run(s) the ball when appropriate to the game, whether Lurie has really backed off. And we don’t know how well any of them can coach.

      That last — and big — question aside, in a bit of an update since Siri’s first press conference, I’ve come to like him. Not long after that first appearance the Eagles put out some propaganda video of Siri in the film room. The key: I found myself smiling. His energy and enthusiasm are infectious, not canned, and portend good things more than a(n annoying) golden retriever-like quality. We shall see… the other issue is that the injury bug needs to go away (some players perhaps being so-called “index patients” of a troubled family).

      Of course they need the better part of a football team and have no cap space so this all will take a couple-few years. But I immediately expect more pleasant games; the O-line cannot possibly be as busted next season as last. (The strength of that line covered a multitude of sins in recent years: as it and in-person relationships collapsed due to 2020, so did the house of cards.)

      I’m pissed that I missed out on the post- Pfizer #2 sleep: I planned for it, embraced it, and all I got was some rock gut and cranky listlessness (awake and useless). Congratulations.

      • scribe says:

        Your analysis on the Iggles seems spot on. Time will tell, however, whether ownership can resist getting their own extension of the Microsoft Surface connection to the coaching staff whereby they can call down to the sidelines during games to demand the plays they want to see. Sorta like that video-game arena league Young Mr. Manziel was last seen and heard touting as the future of football. Or at least his immediate future.

        As to the post Pfizer #2 sleep, you may not want to have to have gone through what I did to get there. The night before was serious chills and cramps all night long, followed by feeling febrile, weak and sweaty all day. Then there was the whole deal – most of the day – arranging a different shop to take on my broken car* to get it out of the clutches of The Overchargers, grocery shopping in anticipation of returning The Overchargers’ loaner car, followed by Arranging a Tow, Dealing with The Overchargers’ Service Department (hundreds of dollars ransom, interrupted by “no personal checks” and a quick side trip to the bank), Riding in the Tow Truck, then Waiting in 45F-and-raining-lightly for the Uber. By the time I got home about 5 I was wiped. Fell asleep, sitting upright, in front of the computer.

        *The timing belt tensioner/idler fell down on the job, resulting in the Bad Things That Happen To Interference Engines. For the failure of a $5 part, it’s gonna cost me somewhere around $4k for a new motor (or used car). Which, given the lifetime warranty on the new motor, is decidedly better than The Overchargers’ initial bid of $6999 (with 6 month warranty) or their bidding-against-ourselves second bid of $5550 (with no warranty). But, despite being better, still very stressful.

        • Eureka says:

          You know, I had been meaning to mention here Kate Winslet’s new short HBO series, Mare of Easttown. It’s excellent, gripping with mystery but also the painfulness of mundane (and costly) daily drama [Now What? Oh, I was going to deal with X, and successfully, but now Y relative-emergency/urgency calls. Repeat]. Done wordlessly, of course — and she depicts it so well that you find her character inhabiting your body for some moments after each episode, as life push-pulls you, too, again. The third of seven shows premiers Sunday night (though start from the beginning).

          I forgot to note my Pfizerama included several days of migraines but none of the fever-chills stuff. Fortunately my more physically-demanding trials-of-life scheduled themselves for between the shots, not during [and ironically vis-a-vis yours, resulted in the acquisition of an Unproblematic Vehicle (Knock on Wood, Belts Hold Right and all that). Of course my mother had to pass for that to happen (awhile back now) — and she always fretted so about proper vehicle maintenance, esp. over the winter.]

          I was trying to place who I’d last seen boosting Manziel and his league. It was thank-you-for-LII (and your 2018 shrine to Nick Foles) -come-bettor role model Chris Long. So it struck me as another way to part fools from their money (with even less fun). Cue Jamiroquai.

    • Peterr says:

      Now, look at the Jimmy G. and Aaron Rodgers situations through that lens, where the teams get a stud QB on a rookie contract, ride him hard for 4 years, then insult him and toss him aside. The Pack, with last year’s pick, and the Niners, with yesterday’s, are doing just that. Let someone else pay for Rodgers’ past performance or the contract the Patsies gave Garop. And then the media shills will go on about how Rodgers is a diva the Pack have been trying to push out for years and the listeners will gobble it up. When in reality it’s management cutting costs.

      Rodgers was fine with this when he was The Hot New Guy. Now he seems to be channeling his inner Favre.

      • scribe says:

        Some truth to that. But the Pack aren’t being, and haven’t been, anywhere near above-board with him.

        Seems to be a habit with that organization, as I remember them doing much the same with Favruh.

        • scribe says:

          Interesting – an experiment in human behavior which shows repeatable results. Confirms that, if you keep a star QB in the dark and insult him, he will take it badly.

        • bmaz says:

          In a regard, I think it is different. Favre was just an old diva, but he did not want out of Green Bay. Rodgers seems to. There is a difference there.

  12. Rapier says:

    My condolences to Justin Fields whose name will be the answer to a trivia question in 20 years because he was selected by the Bears. The same fate that would have befallen Tom Brady or really any HOF QB in the modern era had they had the same misfortune. I am not saying Fields is HOF material only that with the Bears we will never know.

  13. bmaz says:

    I completely whiffed on mentioning the Derby. Honestly, no clue what is up at Churchill this year. Essential Quality seems to be the consensus favorite, but the 14 post is historically brutal. Just for grins, I will pull for either Midnight Bourbon or Bourbonic. After all, this is Bourbon country we are talking about.

        • Molly Pitcher says:

          Regarding the Derby, my daughter’s friend is one of the syndicate owners of Hidden Stash who will be running tomorrow. He will probably be a 60-1 or worse, but they are very excited. The decision to run him was only made a few days ago.

          He is trained by a woman; Vicki Oliver will be just the 18th woman to ever train a runner in the Kentucky Derby. Syracuse head basketball coach, Jim Boeheim, also owns a portion of Hidden Stash .

          Hidden Stash’s saddle cloth number/post position is 13.

        • scribe says:

          I make this stuff the French call “44”, which is an infused vodka, basically. Ingredients are one liter plain vodka (more or less), one ripe orange, 44 French roast coffee beans, one ripe banana (peeled), 44 lumps (i.e., 1 1/3 cups) sugar, one vanilla bean.

          Scrub the orange a bit (to remove any wax) then puncture its skin 44 times (point of a sharp knife). Puncture the vanilla bean 44 times similarly. Put all the ingredients into a large, large-mouthed, non-reactive jar, swirl a bit to start dissolving the sugar, then put in the proverbial cool, dark place for 44 days. At the end of the time, decant into a suitable bottle and discard the fruit and coffee beans. I’ll toss the vanilla bean into the bottle both because they’re dear, continue to hold flavor, and mark what’s in the bottle.

          It comes out somewhere between Cointreau and Grand Marnier (but a hell of a lot cheaper). Good sipped straight (warms on winter evenings), rocks, or (here’s the important part) floated atop some whiskey.

          It humors the rye nicely.

  14. Jon says:

    I think this F1 season may be the most interesting and exciting in decades. Hamilton continues to be the most talented, skillful and ferocious competitor. His driving is of another order than any other driver. But many of the other teams really see to have stepped up their game, so the competition is far closer. The rules changes have also done their work, and we see more passing in one race than used to happen in a season of follow the leader, in the bad old days. Last year also saw a mix up of the season and tracks, with a number of really fine older tracks pressed back into service, showing just how boring the Tilke tracks are. And the relative fragility of Pirelli’s tires have also helped keep things interesting. Even Ferrari seem to have finally bought a clue. If George Russell can finally find a point, my life may be complete.

    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please use a more differentiated username when you comment next as we have several community members named “Jon” or “Jonathan.” I’m sorry we haven’t pointed this out in your previous (11) comments but I think we mistook you for one of the other Jons. Thanks. /~Rayne]

  15. punaise says:

    Seems the Niners made a decent pick. Football: meh.

    I did not have “SF Giants in first place* in the NL West on the last day of April, with the best record in the NL” on my bingo card, did you?

    *they backed into it on a travel day thanks to Dodgers loss.

    Nice to see the cross-bay A’s going from horrid to torrid as well.

    Warriors are fading… they have an unfortunate habit of doing face-plants on national TV.

  16. bmaz says:

    Actually thought the Cards might take the PSU tight end, but the Stillers took him. He looks quite good. Nice pick Scribe.

    • scribe says:

      Second time in recent years my Stillers have taken a TE from PSU. The other was Jesse James, who played his rookie contract through with the Stillers and then went as a free agent to the Lions. James is a kid out of McKeesport who comes in at 6’7″ and 265 or so, picked in 2015. A good, solid player who still has miles left on the clock. James was robbed of a TD by bad refereeing at the climactic moment of a late-season game in Pittsburgh against the Cheatertown Cheaters. That changed the playoff seeding from goes-through-Pittsburgh to goes-through-Foxboro and, effectively, foreclosed an all-Pennsylvania (Stillers-Iggles) Super Bowl.
      We are still bitter about that.
      Say what one will about Tomlin, but he has to receive credit for possibly the best track record extant when it comes to picking receivers.

      • scribe says:

        With a name like “Freiermuth” I was sure he was some big Penn Dutch farm boy. I was wrong – he’s from Massachusetts.

        Third round pick is a center/offensive guard from Illinois. Good call, that. They’er going to need OL help.

        In other teams’ news, Tompa Bay spent its second-round pick on Kyle Trask, the Florida QB who broke Tim Tebow’s passing records. From the Department of Laying On Heavy Expectations, Trask’s wikipedia entry says he “… is an American football quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL) as well as the heir apparent to Tom Brady.”
        Note that he was born in 1998, when Biebs was already in college. (Behind the Immortal Drew Henson on the depth chart, I think.)

        • bmaz says:

          I really thought the Cards would take him. Heck, they may need a TE even more than the Stillers. But they got Rondale Moore, who might be a WR total steal. AZ still gonna need some TE help though. Freiermuth really looks like a keeper, so congrats on that.

        • scribe says:

          The Lions cut Jesse James recently, from his 4 year gazillion-dollar contract. Not a bad pickup for a team needing a TE. If I ran the Stillers I’d be bringing him back.

      • scribe says:

        We are still bitter about that.
        Like he says: “it’s the NFL’s world. We just live in it.”
        There were available online t-shirts and hoodies which read “Jesse James Caught That Ball”, but the campaign was “removed for content reasons”, which I interpret as the No Fun League enforcing its copyright on bad officiating and reporting on the results of games.
        Like he says: “it’s the NFL’s world. We just live in it.”
        Made better, a year later.

  17. Eureka says:

    Oh boy Jim must be thrilled.

    Thought the Eagles might take Kyle Trask if he fell to 70 but TB snagged him.

  18. phred says:

    Dang. I had heard Mr. Rodgers did his homework for his Jeopardy stint, but it hadn’t occurred to me he was checking it out for his retirement gig. At his age, one must consider such things ; )

  19. scribe says:

    And in the 4th round my Stillers take another offensive lineman, a 6’5″ 315# guy from Texas A&M who, says his hometown paper as linked through his brand new wikipedia page, hasn’t missed a start since sophomore year.
    In NFL terms, that means he’ll come up lame the second day of training camp and never play a down in a live game. Or something.
    As a 4th round compensatory pick, we get an linebacker from A&M. So obscure, his brand new wikipedia page doesn’t even have a hometown paper article about him to reference.

    One thing that’s been bugging me: have any of you noticed, during the video from the living room shots of last night’s draft picks, how they all seemed to have the right team’s hat there to wear during the celebration? Did The League send them a box of 32 hats? Or is this whole draft spectacle stage managed, such that they only had to send them one?

      • scribe says:

        That’s true, but Pack management wanted to move on and treated him like dirt on the way to getting rid of him. I recall they had to break out the kneepads and open wide for a good long time before Retired Favre would come back to town to see his number retired.

        Discount Doublecheck took the blindside last year and let it stew, then took it out on the team. He’s going to make getting rid of him expensive/painful for Pack management.

        • bmaz says:

          Different divas. Favre was a pain in the ass, but was never worried about Rodgers, and did not really want to leave. Rodgers is a pain in the ass, worried about Love and really wants to leave. It is a pretty ironic juxtaposition.

          Much is made of the coaching continuity in Pittsburgh, and rightfully so, but since 1992, GB has had, really, only two QBs. That is pretty insane. May be time for the next one though. But that kind of continuity is what makes both teams what they are.

      • scribe says:

        Ok – so far so good. But one question answered raises a couple new ones.

        What to do with the other 31 hats? Party favors ? In this time of corona, shuffling out one per guest means a party way over occupancy limits and a visit from the police. Will The League intervene? Doubt it.

        If not party favors, do they get shipped off to some 3rd World backwater like the Atlanta Falcons’ 2018 Super Bowl Champions shirts? Who pays the shipping? Did they give the prospective draftee a return label? Who eats the cost of these unwanted misfit hats?

        Presumably, someone at League HQ was making a list and checking it twice to determine who gets the box of hats. The Draft Worthy Candidates. At some point, someone got picked who didn’t make the list. Nice surprise but I’m sure he’d like a hat. Probably worse, someone who got a box of hats didn’t get picked. Will he have to send them all back? Who pays?

        • Eureka says:

          The hats: same page, many questions. Found this from last year:

          What NFL Draft picks are doing with all of their extra hats

          The NFL sent pre-draft care packages, including the hats of all 32 teams, to 57 prospects identified as possible first-rounders. That’s more than 1,800 hats distributed in order to capture a signature welcome-to-the-NFL moment that could have been missing in the virtual draft.

          Every time a new draft pick showed up on the television screen Thursday night already sporting his new team’s hat, there were 31 others discarded somewhere nearby.

          What happens to the extras? That decision is up to the player, NFL vice president of communications Brian McCarthy told The Post.

          This year, the draft caps are selling for 31.99 to 39.99 at “that” sports merch outlet for fans. Procedures may have been revised. Maybe they sent the hopefuls pre-paid return shipping weighed-out to the 31st cap (maybe, too, there are Laws Against That somewhere, but they’re not bathing suit bottoms, either).

          Snark aside, I bet some number of these caps show up on auction sites.

          I have a funny story about King Roger gifting cheap, fugly hats. Another day.

  20. scribe says:

    Nice race. The favorite took one hell of a hipcheck from #15 coming out of the gate and got stuck behind a pack for a while, then went outside on the turns and never quite caught up.
    Too bad for #13 – finished but way back in the pack. Still, having a horse in the race has got to be awesome.

    • Molly Pitcher says:

      #13, Hidden Stash went off at substantially better than the 60-1 everyone expected, and he gave the owners a thrill !!

  21. Eureka says:

    All of the worlds are colliding:

    Trending in United States
    Roger Stone
    Many say Tom Brady’s Kentucky Derby outfit makes him look like the villain from Who Framed Roger Rabbit and like former president Trump’s ally Roger Stone

    Apparently just updated as:

    Horse racing & equestrian · Trending
    Judge Doom
    Many say Tom Brady’s Kentucky Derby outfit makes him look like the villain from Who Framed Roger Rabbit and like former president Trump’s ally Roger Stone
    Trending with Roger Stone

    Eh — I see some Jim Carrey there too

      • Eureka says:

        To be fair I think this is a near-guaranteed epiphenomenal result of the Derby dress code and TB’s long face, currently “leaned out” (possible there’s some facial fat pad loss with age but more likely the guru-chef and No Carbs for You!). [And compare to those 2012 photos, the top-of-the-top two of which I can see above the paywall banner.]

        I’m struggling to envision any hat — besides one that hugs to his scalp, like a ballcap — that wouldn’t produce (cartoon-/villain-) character comparisons, particularly with typical “masculine” wardrobe coloration. Change the brim/bowl and you’ve still got, like, that cowboy from Toy Story. IOW, constraints which even Giselle would be hard-pressed to overcome. Puzzling on this I think he’d have to go full-on pastels/soft neutrals.

        This basketball game (76ers @ Spurs) has turned stressful, into OT off a game-long ten+-point lead. Clearly will require my full attention.

  22. bmaz says:

    Lol, Nico just said that Lewis, behind the cameras, does not have much for Verstappen and that it would be a bad idea for Max to test him side by side. Kind of find that believable.

  23. scribe says:

    Watching a bit of Portuguese GP, wondering whether that digital display showing speed, throttle percentage, brake percentage, gear and all that other business is an actual display or just a computer creation superimposed into the video.
    A little distracting.

    Also, empty stands no fun.

      • Chetnolian says:

        Super course and the excitement was improved by the slippery surface even if the drivers didn’t like it. I agree the absence of people watching was sad.

  24. scribe says:

    Fans break into Old Trafford, being rousted IRT on live TV by the police. Liverpool-ManU delayed.

    That whole “bad ownership doing unpopular things” thing seeming to have unanticipated outgrowths.

    • scribe says:

      Liverpool-Man U postponed sine die.

      In the distance, a rumbling sound. The Return of the English Football Hooligan proceeds apace*. A bunch of yobs adapting something from Serie A … road flares.

      Ironic, the propaganda about how the game is all about the fans, on the tarps covering all the seats, as the fans take over the pitch.

      Every now and a again, one would see soccer riots at Italian games where people brought road flares and pyro into the stadium. I once asked a colleague, born in Italy and a former semi-pro player himself, why it was that this happened repeatedly in Italy. His answer: “it’s the ownership class and government letting the working-class blow off some steam without actually having to change anything.”

      *Truism: “so long as there are Maoist guerillas in some distant land raising hell, or English soccer hooligans in more civilized countries doing likewise, we can know the world is not yet totally fucked.”

  25. bmaz says:

    I hate to see stupid soccer hooligans waving around lit road flares. People laugh at social darwinism, but it is real.

    • Chetnolian says:

      True and violence is never justified, but the cause, to protest greedy Americans ruining football (European definition) is a noble one.

    • bmaz says:

      Well crap. Met him when I was younger, but because of car business (Chevrolet) rather than actual racing. What a truly wonderful man.

    • scribe says:

      Thank Chinese imports for spotted lanternflies.

      AFAIK trout don’t eat them, bass don’t eat them, birds don’t eat them and all the damned things do is suck trees dry then crap all over everything. When they’re not flying as slowly as fireflies in front of and onto everything. (They have a hard time getting aloft, being nearly the size of a hummingbird.)

      Damned things are pest worse than #43 Tom Wilson.

Comments are closed.