Nov 30, 2005
So I’m watching the Colts dismantle the Steelers on Monday night and because apparently I’m the type of person who needs to be constantly entertained, I flip around to other channels during the commercial breaks, the referee huddles, the first down measurements, and each & every time Michaels and Madden toss it down to the sideline reporter. After a few flips, something catches my eye. No, not E!'s Celebrity Poker. No, not the latest Ashlee Simpson video. And no, not The Making of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Calendar. It was a show on the Food Network about, well, food (and again no, I’m not gay). Specifically, this show was about what we commonly refer to as “comfort foods”. You know, those foods that make us feel good, ones that we just have to have every once in a while, that we could eat every day if we had to, and that for some reason, just always hit the spot. Mine is a grilled turkey, bacon & cheese sandwich with a bowl of tomato soup. Yours might be a peanut butter & jelly sandwich with the crust cut off, or maybe your mom’s meatloaf, or perhaps a steaming bowl of Chunky Clam Chowder, or, if you’re Cardinals head coach Denny Green, five egg sandwiches, a stack of hotcakes, a basket of bisuits smothered in beef gravy, and fourteen cinnamon rolls.
So I built up an appetite, flipped around some more and found Pulp Fiction airing for just the 273rd time this month on the IFC channel. After a few minutes of Jules toying with Vincent, then Jules toying with Brett, then Mia toying with Vincent, it hit me- Pulp Fiction is one of my comfort foods. Yep, you see I don’t think a comfort food has to actually be a “food”. It could be a movie, a tv show, a cd, a book, a best friend, a pet, a weekly card game, a favorite chair, or, if you’re Michael Irvin, a lovely, well-stuffed crack pipe. It’s anything that makes you feel like, no matter what else is going on, that everything is somehow going to be okay. We have to have these things. We have to know that they’re there, waiting for us, whenever we need them. They’re our “go-to” receivers. Basically, they’re our Marvin Harrisons.
Flipping back to the game, I realized that Marvin is Peyton’s comfort food. First play of a big game on Monday Night Football against a tough defense, what do you do? Fake the handoff and throw it to number 88. Eighty yards later…. touchdown, statement made, game over. Comfort food.
Manning has plenty of other guys to throw to; Reggie Wayne, Dallas Clark, and Brandon Stokley are all capable receivers but none of it works without Harrison. He’s the go-to guy. Why is he Manning’s go-to guy, his "comfort food"? Because Manning knows that he’ll be where he’s supposed to be, when he’s supposed to be there, and no matter what he throws at him, he’ll take care of it. No matter what else is going on around him- other receivers running wrong routes, an ineffective running game, too much crowd noise to yell out an audible...- all it takes is a look, just a look from Manning to Harrison & they're on the same page. Comfort food.
Believe me, none of it works without Harrison. If you don't believe me, take away someone’s comfort food and watch what happens. What if suddenly your dog ran away, or your best friend stopped talking to you, or the weekly poker game was no more, or mom went on a meatloaf-baking strike….? You’d be out of sorts....not yourself....a little lost, don’t you think? Of course you would. Being comfortable isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity. Ask Brett Favre just how much fun he’s having without Robert Ferguson. Ask Duante Culpepper how grand life was without Randy Moss. Check with the Saints on how it feels to be temporary residents of San Antonio.
Not good times.
Why do I mention all this? Because with five weeks left, this is the time when quarterbacks start relying on the "go-to guys", coordinators start depending on their "bread & butter plays", and head coaches start saying things like, “we've gotta get back to what we do best”. That’s why this Sunday I fully expect to see a lot of Roethlisberger handing off to Bettis, Carson Palmer looking for Chad Johnson, Bledsoe looking for Keyshawn, Eli tossing to Shockey, Vick pulling it down & running out of the pocket, Delhomme throwing to Steve Smith, a lot of Green to Gonzalez in KC, and the Broncos making chop blocks….lots and lots of chop blocks. And me, well, you can be sure I’ll be watching it all go down while eating my grilled turkey, bacon & cheese sandwich with a hot bowl of tomato soup. Or maybe a Big Kahuna burger and five-dollar milkshake.
On with the Matchups...........
Falcons at Panthers-
Is it just me, or are the Falcons about as unpredictable as Courtney Love at an open bar reception? You really can't be sure if they're gonna just quietly pass out or if they're gonna yell at the DJ, take a swing at the maid of honor, puke in the champagne fountain and piss on the dance floor. It's a toss-up, really.
Bills at Dolphins-
The battle for second place in the crappiest division of all time! This Sunday, only on CBS!
Bengals at Steelers-
Hey Marvin Lewis, turn around, you've got something on your back. Oh, hey, it's a black & gold monkey! You may want to do something about that.
Cowboys at Giants-
So do you think Drew and Keyshawn have a package deal with Satan or did they negotiate seperately?
Packers at Bears-
I can't decide what's more overrated, The Dave Matthews Band or the Bears' defense. There seems to be a "space between" perception & reality here.
Texans at Ravens-
Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the Don Criqui Game of the Week!
Jaguars at Browns-
I'll go out on a limb here and say the Jaguars win a squeaker.
Seriously, they're 8-3 and their eight wins are by a combined total of what, five points? Is that even possible?
Vikings at Lions-
I'm telling you, if Mariucci would've booked an orgy at sea, his team wouldn't have quit on him, he'd still be employed and the Lions would be making a playoff run right now.
Bucs at Saints-
Speaking of firing coaches, Jim Haslett has officially passed David Shula on the all-time list of Games Coached After Legitimately Derserving to be Fired.
Congratulations Jim, keep up the shitty work.
Titans at Colts-
Jeff Fisher's comfort food? I'm not quite sure but I know he hides it somewhere in that big furry cookie duster.
Cardinals at Niners-
Redskins at Rams-
You're telling me that the Rams new QB is some Irish dude fresh outta Harvard? Sweet. He's like the Good Will Hunting of the NFL. "Hey Bulger, you like apples? Well I'm starting this weekend, how 'bout them apples?"
Broncos at Chiefs-
Watch for the chop blocks, Watch For The Chop Blocks.....FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WATCH FOR THE CHOP BLOCKS!!!!!
Jets at Patriots-
J-E-T-S, Suck, Suck, Suck!!!
Raiders at Chargers-
If a big, fat, over-the-hill defensive tackle goes down for the season but no one really cares, will he still make a sound byte?
(Monday Night) Seahawks at Eagles-
Over/Under on the number of times Michaels & Madden mention T.O and Donnie Mac even though they won't be playing in this one: 73
Navy at Army-
UCLA at USC-
Nov 21, 2005
Remembering that this Thursday is Thanksgiving, I got curious as to what some of my friends, co-workers, acquaintences, and others (including one guy who was begging for change on an off-ramp) are thankful for. The results, randomly listed below, with no names attached to protect the not-so-innocent, range from heartwarming to puzzling to startling to, well, to downright creepy. Here, have a look.........
"That my car runs now"
"That my daughter dumped her idiot boyfriend last week"
"Gas prices going down"
"The burgeoning career of Jake Gyllenhall"
"That my probation officer is on vacation this week"
"The Bengals having a good season"
"Statutes of limitations"
"Twinkies and Ho-Hos"
"The collective works of The Who"
"Pam Anderson's new show"
"Our vacation home in Florida"
"Love, in all its' forms in this dimension and all others"
"A good wine"
"Being able to retire early"
"That my wife let me buy a new motorcycle"
"Deep fried turkey"
"Quiet moments at home"
"The new Harry Potter movie"
"The ability to ejaculate"
"The NFL Network"
"The smell of punanny"
.....and I'm simply thankful that I asked. On with the Matchups.....
(Thursday) Falcons at Lions-
Aaah, Thanksgiving in Detroit. What a tradition. Who wants to go to grandma's house when you can drive through bullet-riddled, litter-infested, downtown Detroit to watch your beloved Lions get their sphincters reamed by yet another more talented team? F-you grandma, I'm headed to the game!
(Thursday) Broncos at Cowboys-
If Parcells had Shannahan's choppers, just imagine the kind of damage he could do to a freshly basted turkey.
(Saturday) Georgia at Georgia Tech-
Patriots at Chiefs-
Early Americans versus indians.....on Thanksgiving weekend.....Brilliant!
Chargers at Redskins-
Charging at indians and referring to them with a derogatory term.....on Thanksgiving weekend.....Brilliant!
Niners at Titans-
The Tryptofan Game of the Week!
Seriously, this matchup could quickly put even the most hardcore methamphetamine addict into a deep coma.
Ravens at Bengals-
Nice to see that Jamal Lewis is still toting the pig like he has a jiblet bag stuck in his ass. Good times.
Panthers at Bills-
For those of you who have seen Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.....shouldn't it be a slam dunk no-brainer for the Panthers to change the name of their cheerleading squad from the Top Cats to the Sex Panthers? Seriously, who's in charge over there?
Bears at Bucs-
Winner of this one officially becomes the "Where in the Holy Hell Did They Come From" team of the year.
Browns at Vikings-
A win here and the Vikings will be 4-1 since their infamous orgy at sea. Coincidence? I don't know, but other mediocre teams like the Lions, Rams, and Bills may want to look into booking a cruise.
Rams at Texans-
Hey,is that David Carr or a lifeless CPR dummy? Hard to tell, my friend, hard to tell.
Jaguars at Cards-
When you think about it, the Jaguars are a lot like Mama Squintz- it may be ugly, and it may get quite messy but they do just enough to get the job done.
Dolphins at Raiders-
After the game, please join Ricky Williams for a traditional Thansgiving Day feast- two turkey subs from Quiznos, a heaping helping of hash potatoes, some delicious chicken pot pie, and weed......lots & lots of weed.
Packers at Eagles-
Last week, Eagles backup quarterback Mike McMahon looked a lot like the old Brett Favre. Meanwhile, Brett Favre looked a lot like the old Mike McMahon. Hmmm. Anyone ever seen the movie Freaky Friday? Speaking of which, has any woman in the history of women made a bigger slide on the Looks Continuum than Jamie Lee Curtis?
Giants at Seahawks-
Happy Tiki Day! (sorry)
Saints at Jets-
Seriously, what's the F-ing point here?
(Monday Night) Steelers at Colts-
You know what I'm most thankful for this Thanksgiving? Tommy Maddox. God bless you, Tommy Maddox.
Nov 16, 2005
No mindless ramblings from me this week. Sorry fellas, there's a first time for everything. There was a show about "nothing" once. If I remember right, it did pretty well.
Ohio State at Michigan-
New Mexico State at San Jose State-
Cardinals at Rams-
Panthers at Bears-
Lions at Cowboys-
Jaguars at Titans-
Dolphins at Browns-
Saints at Patriots-
Raiders at Redskins-
Eagles at Giants-
Steelers at Ravens-
Bucs at Falcons-
Seahawks at Niners-
Bills at Chargers-
Colts at Bengals-
Jets at Broncos-
Chiefs at Texans-
(Monday Night) Vikings at Packers-
Nov 10, 2005
Well, the 2005 NFL season has official hit the halfway point. And you know what that means. Yep, it means there’s another half still to go. If the second half is anything like the first, it could go down as quite possibly the most entertaining season in NFL history. We’ve had a team orgy on a yacht, Panther cheerleaders rubbing each others’ tacos in a bathroom stall, the return of Vinny Testicleverde, the return of Rasta Ricky, the demise of the Patriot Dynasty, Neil F-ing Wackers going 26 for 26 on field goal attempts, Mark Brunell and Jake Plummer consummating deals with the devil, the mysterious infections of Mike Martz and Braylon Edwards, the first-place Bengals, the first-place Bears, the last-place Eagles, the Baton Rouge Saints, the San Antonio Saints, the sad ending to Brett Favre’s career, the fan who stole the ball out of Favre’s hands in Cincinnati, the emergence of Carson Palmer and Eli Manning, the ’05 Bears defense being better than the ’85 Bears defense, the Burger King in-action commercials, the comeback of Tedy Bruschi, and, of course, the quick & decisive public castration of Terrell Owens by the Philadelphia Eagles.
What in the hell could we be in store for in weeks ten through seventeen? A player coming out of the closet? The return of Bernie Kosar? Cheerleaders having sex on tape with livestock? Mike Tice and Denny Green getting contract extensions?….One can only hope. What I do know is this: the Colts are the front-runners to win Super Bowl XL and the Texans are the front-runners to win the Matt Leinart Sweepstakes. Most everything else seems to be like Mama Squintz ass after 2am……..up for grabs and up in the air.
But here are some things I think I know about Week 10………
Cardinals at Lions-
Joey Harrington’s rookie card will not be increasing in value anytime soon.
Ravens at Jaguars-
Brian Billick will not be this year’s NFL Coach of the Year, but he is still in the running for the FedEx Fuckface Whiny Bitch of the Year Award. Good luck Coach.
Texans at Colts-
This is a classic trap game. The Colts are coming off of an emotional Monday Nighter in New England, they have a short week to prepare, the Texans are coming off two straight strong performances, Domanick Davis is beginn………..Shit, I almost got through that with a straight face.
Chiefs at Bills-
This is Dick Vermeil’s last season. Hey, what a coincidence, I think it’s Mike Mularkey’s last season, too.
Vikings at Giants-
The Vikings are easily the worst road act this side of Ashlee Simpson.
Patriots at Dolphins-
The Pats have the second-lowest rated defense in the league. Maybe Tom Brady should get them one of those Visa cards with the five layers of protection. Or maybe the personnel director should stop signing has-beens like Chad Brown and Duane Starks.
Niners at Bears-
I know, Earl knows, and now so do the Niners.... that karma thing can be a real bitch.
Broncos at Oakland-
Forget Carmen San Diego and Matt Lauer, where in the hell is Randy Moss? And while I’m thinking of skinny black guys, has anyone found Dave Chappelle yet? Let’s start checking under sewer grates and floor vents.
Jets at Panthers-
If Dave Chappelle were here, I think he’d agree with me in saying, “The Panthers are some sneaky bitches, ain’t they? Six and two and gettin’ no press. They’re some real stealthy motherfuckers. And I’ll admit it, if a couple of their cheerleaders hadn’t just got caught flickin’ each other’s beans in a public bathroom, I still wouldn’t have known they were 6-2 right now………I’m just interested in the freaky bitches…….FREAKY!!!!”
Packers at Falcons-
“As winner of our weekly business card drawing, Stanley Chamkowski of Eau Claire, Wisconsin will be Brett Favre’s go-to receiver this Sunday against the Falcons. Stanley will also receive four free oil changes from Big Tom’s Oil Lube. Big Tom’s, serving eastern Wisconsin since 1973 with twelve convenient locations, including the newest Big Tom’s right next to Hilda’s Hotcake Heaven on State Route 129 just north of the Rollie Fingers Mustache Museum.”
Rams at Seahawks-
It’s not just me……..Shawn Alexander looks like Wayne Brady on steroids, right?
Redskins at Bucs-
It’s official; Chris Simms will never be as good a quarterback as his father. Furthermore, he may also never be as good a quarterback as his mother.
Browns at Steelers-
Man, that Polamalu's got a lot of hair. I haven't seen that much hair in one place since Mama Squintz wore her backless red dress to the club a few weeks ago.
(Monday Night) Cowboys at Eagles-
T.O. will be watching this one from home……..Lying in bed with Mama McNabb, drinkin' sweet tea and suckin’ on some neckbones!
LSU at Alabama-
Florida at South Carolina-
Nov 2, 2005
I think it’s safe to say that when you spend an afternoon tossing five interceptions and getting the ball stolen from you by a drunken fan, it’s time to call it a career. Sure, two of the interceptions were deflected and the fan was super-stealthy, but goddammit that’s a bad fucking day, ain’t it? Now don’t get me wrong, I love Brett Favre. You’ll have to search long and hard to find a tougher, more fearless, more competitive quarterback than number four. Two hundred twelve straight starts and counting, playing through broken bones, sprains, strains, the death of his father…..and not only playing but (until recently) playing very well. He's always shown a great love for the game & played it with the exhuberance of a ten-year old boy letting it loose on the playground. He's been a model citizen, a good teammate, and maybe most importantly, he's been entertaining and refreshingly honest. But now, honestly, the Packers sit at 1-6 and Captain Farve is at the helm of a ship that is quickly circling the drain. Now, it’s not all Favre’s fault. In fact, most of it’s not his fault. He’s without two of his top three receivers, his top two running backs, the offensive line is a disaster, and their best defensive back seems to have stolen Milli Vanilli's hair. This is certainly not a good way for a player like Brett Favre to go out. I want to remember him as the scrambling, gun-slinging, comeback master who brought that hopeless, godforsaken northern Wisconsin town back from the dead. Not as the limping, gasping for air, interception machine he was last week. When he was good, he was real good- like an out-of-control VW bug spinning on a frozen road, somehow never getting stuck in the snow. Now, he's like the VW Thing (the vehicle that was supposed to be able to float but actually took on water like the SS Minnow), barely keeping his head above water and looking silly in the process.
Quick sidebar here: Why in the hell didn't Volkswagen ever hire Favre to do commercials for them? Favre. Farfegnugen. I cannot be the only one to have thought of this, right?
Anyway, I guess it really doesn't matter what I want to see, or what I don't want to see. If Favre wants to play, you gotta let him play. Let him go out like half of the Regulators in Young Guns when they tried to fight their way out of Alex' calvary-surrounded burning house. Maybe Favre wants to end it in a blaze of glory (sorry). Maybe he's in the huddle, surrounded by hasbeens and neverbeens and saying, "I like these odds". And if he is, well, good for him. (Warning: another Young Guns reference coming up in three seconds) He spent many a Sunday bating cornerbacks with a pump fake that whispered "I'll make ya' famous", so I reckon he deserves to write his own ending.
Some people say the Packers first rounder & QB of the future, Aaron Rodgers, should be in there getting some experience. That may be true, but given the circumstance, Aaron Rodgers can wait. I don't care if the Packers go 2-14, I just want one more improbable, impossible, unbelieveable fourth quarter rally in Lambeau, led by good ol' number four before the curtain falls on the '05 season and his career. And if possible, I'd really like for it to be this Sunday against the Steelers. And if possible, I'd also like Milli Vanilli to break Hines Ward's fibula. Or tibula. Or tibia. Whatever. Whichever takes longer to heal. And if it happens, (regional coverage permitting) I'll be watching it live. And if you happen to be watching too, and you happen to get a tear in your eye as Farve leaves the field with his fist in the air, his cold breath visible in the crisp autumn air, heartfelt cheers from adoring fans raining down upon him, well, you can be sure that I too will have a tear or two running down my cheek. Not so much for Favre as it will be from laughing at the misfortune of the Steelers, but still, some tears will be shed.
So keep strapping it on, Brett Fav-ruh. Keep your chin up, your passes down, your spirals tight, and your forward laterals, uh, not so forward. Patrol that frozen tundra like you own it. Go out like you came in- taking risks, throwing from all angles, and running like hell. And no matter what happens, just remember, Terry Bradshaw's job on Fox NFL Sunday is yours for the taking.
Wisconsin at Penn State-
After all that, could I really leave Wisconsin off of the slate this week? Seriously.
Miami FL at Virginia Tech-
VT is #3 in the nation behind USC and Texas. Great. That's a lot like being that dark-haired chick on Baywatch. Sure, she was pretty hot, but did anyone fucking notice?
Falcons at Dolphins-
Here's my part of a conversation with a co-worker recently: "No, seriously, Gus Frerotte is still in the NFL..... I swear to you..... He's starting for the Dolphins..... Why would I lie.... Look it up..... No, I'm not fucking with you."
Panthers at Bucs-
Two words: Chris. Simms.
Seven more words: Give me fifty dollars on the Panthers.
Bengals at Ravens-
No Ray Lewis. No Ed Reed. And most importantly (for the Ravens) no Kyle Boller.
Lions at Vikings-
Jeff Garcia. Brad Johnson. The Lions versus the Vikings, this Sunday on FOX!
Texans at Jaguars-
Over/Under on how many times the Jags will sack David Carr: 6.......in the first quarter.
Raiders at Chiefs-
Is it just me, or has no one else seen any coverage of the Raiders this season? It's almost like they moved back to LA and no one followed. How the hell are they doing? I mean, they do have Moss, Sapp, Janikowski, Woodson, and Kerry Collins, right? There's got to be a story about drugs, booze, criminal behavior, or some sexual deviance over at Mama Squintz' house, right? Whaddya say we gets a camera or two over there before we miss something.
Chargers at Jets-
J!E!T!S! SUCK, SUCK, SUCK!!!
Titans at Browns-
Also known as, The Don Criqui Game of the Week
Bears at Saints (in Baton Rouge)-
Word has it that the good people of Baton Rouge are quietly praying to be hit by a level four hurricane just so the Saints will have to leave.
(Yes, I know,....Hell, straight to hell. Fine.)
Giants at Niners-
Tim Rattay, Alex Smith, Ken Dorsey, now Jessie Palmer........Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha, ....Karma baby, karma!
Seahawks at Cardinals-
Hey, look who's on the hot seat boys & girls......it's Denny Green! Hi, Denny!
Steelers at Packers-
Again, tibula, fibula, whichever takes longer to heal.
(F-you Hines Ward, you little gooky-spooky)
Eagles at Redskins-
Word has it that Mark Brunell is seriously pissed off at Satan. His agent claims that Satan renegged on his deal last week & now Brunell is seeking restitution. Satan camp claims that Brunell's October payment was late, thereby voiding the contract. My sources tell me to expect both sides to settle their differences by gametime on Sunday.
(Monday Night) Colts at Patriots-
Al Michaels, John Madden, step right up and be the next crew to suck Tedy Bruschi's dick for him. And feel free to show his freakishly pale wife another 472 times during the game.