NFL’s Clutch Killers

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Published on : November 18, 2016

 

This one goes out to the true ballers. The teams and players that never say die. The stats and odds may be stacked against them but they laugh in the face of fear and pull off the impossible. But if you routinely pull off the impossible can we really call it impossible? Woah, intellectual brain freeze. Let’s get to know the NFL crews that are pure clutch.

 

The New York Giants

Coming off a 1 point win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football, the G-men are now 6-3. Not bad, still chasing Dallas, even though they did beat them in week 1, but that seems ages ago. All 6 wins have been within 7 points. So the games they are winning are all being won in the fourth quarter. That takes guts. Giants are last in the league in rushing. So Eli Manning has t0 get some of the credit here. We all jump on him when he throws the pick but he is leading them to wins. And looking ahead they have Chicago and Cleveland. Both seem like very winnable games. The schedule after that gets brutal: at Pittsburgh, Dallas, Detroit, at Philly, at Washington. We are going to learn a lot about New York in those last weeks.

 

 

The Detroit Lions

Matt Stafford is the new comeback kid in the mold of Favre or Elway. In all 5 wins, the Cardiac Cats were trailing in the 4th quarter and Stafford led them back. The arm of quarterback and the leg of kicker Matt Parter have been clutch all season. All these two need is 40 seconds (with or without time outs) to get down the field and boot the game winner. The world is finally taking notice of what fans in Detroit have seen Matt do this his whole career. Stafford currently has 25 game-winning drives in just 102 games played. That’s all fancy stat talk meaning don’t give him a last chance with the ball unless you are ready to lose.

 

Detroit can add some wins in their next four games where they play Jacksonville, Minnesota, at New Orleans and Chicago. After that it gets wild with all road games starting at New York, at Dallas and at Green Bay. Wow, who at the scheduling office hates the Lions? If Detroit is going to make the playoffs, it is because of Stafford and his killer instinct.

 

The Kansas City Chiefs

 

KC is 7-2 and winners of 5 straight. Unlike the teams mentioned above, the Chiefs have been winning late but not necessarily because of QB Alex Smith. Don’t get me wrong, he has been vital in the victories but they have found different ways to win each week. In week 10, Kansas City was down 17 to Carolina before they finally woke up. A few field goals, a pick six, a touchdown and a forced fumble led to a game winning kick that stole Christmas from the Panthers.

 

The AFC West is tight and KC plays 2 divisional games in the next 4 weeks. First it’s Tampa Bay, at Denver, at Atlanta, Oakland. The regular season ends for them with matchups with Tennessee, Denver and at San Diego. This crew will make the playoffs either as the division winner or a wild card.

 

No one wants to play these types of teams. They keep hanging around all game and it almost seems over until something crazy happens. It’s a powerful x-factor that swing the fates of the postseason.

 

Heart attack.

 

 


Is Odell Beckham Jr imploding?

Written by :
Published on : October 8, 2016

 

2016 hasn’t exactly been kind to Odell Beckham Jr. He was held to a career-low 23 yards on three catches this past Sunday. Sure, the Giants were playing the Vikings who happen to have what most would consider the best defense in the league, but still, someone with his level of talent should do a little better than that. Through four games he has amassed 303 yards and 22 receptions, but has yet to find the end zone. And his frustrations are beginning to boil over to the point that it is becoming a distraction to the team.

 

Odell Beckham Jr being vocal about his displeasure and making a scene isn’t necessarily something new. But when your own coach says in the media that you need to cut it out, then maybe it’s time to worry. For the last couple of seasons, most of us have brushed off Beckham’s antics by saying that he is just a passionate young player who is learning to control his emotions. Everyone loves passion in their players, right? When does that excuse not work anymore? I think we may have reached that point.

 

 

I’ll admit I enjoyed his fighting with Josh Norman last season. When two players don’t like each other, the competition is that much better. And seeing it turn physical like that appeals to some of my more baser instincts. But if I was a Giants fan I would have hated it. Especially after my talented young wide receiver drew three personal-fouls in that week 15 matchup last year. When Norman was signed by Washington this last offseason, you had to believe we were in for more fireworks. In their first meeting this season, the refs made sure to squash any funny business before it even began, warning the two that they would be ejected from the game without warning if they didn’t play nice.

 

There was some minimal aggression between the two on field, but the worst of it was when OBJ picked up Josh Norman at one point. Not exactly must see tv. The real fun happened on the sidelines after what had already been a pretty solid game for Beckham. With the Giants down 2 but in the red zone and threatening to score, Eli Manning threw an untimely interception. Then Odell Beckham Jr reverted to what I can imagine his 4-year-old self was, throwing one of his biggest tantrums yet. There were tears. There was the flailing of limbs. There was yelling. There was one point where he assaulted the kickers’ practice net, only to have it retaliate and hit him in the fact. It was great. But not for the Giants.

 


OBJ has proven that he is even more immature than we thought, and he followed up his childish display of anger and frustration last week with his worst game ever on Monday Night Football this week. He got owned, and got another penalty after his frustrations with Vikings’ CB Xavier Rhodes boiled over. Now he comes out and claims that he “isn’t having fun anymore” playing football. Can you believe that? Someone isn’t having fun when things aren’t going their way at their job. What a shocker! This dude is ridiculous.

 

As if he wasn’t already ridiculous enough as it is, he then tried to play the victim in the media by insinuating that he might be unfairly scrutinized by the league and the refs. Maybe if he didn’t always fly off the handle and make a scene that wouldn’t be the case. Or maybe the high pressure situation of playing professional sports in New York is finally starting to get to him. Or maybe he is coming apart at the seams.

 

 

Whatever is happening, he had better get it figured out soon. Odell’s image has taken a big hit these last few weeks, and while that isn’t the most important thing, his underperformance only exacerbates it. He had better catch a couple touchdowns this week or the fans and media in New York might go full witch hunt on his ass. And if an Eli interception gets the water works going, he won’t be able to handle that.

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Playoff Staff Picks: Divisional Round

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Published on : January 15, 2016

 

 

Road teams. Like I said (4-0 last week). And of course, Ryan picked them all right too. Can’t he just give it a rest already? Let someone else win for once. The Chiefs murdered the Texans 30-0, the Steelers edged the Bengals 18-16, the Vikings lost a heartbreaker to the Seahawks 9-10 after they missed a 27 yard field goal in the last minute, and the Packers came alive to beat Washington 35-18. In 4 games, the home teams only scored 43 points. That’s awful. Think of all the poor fans who bought playoff tickets to watch their squads get crushed by the visitors. While the road teams scored 93 points in 4 games. That seems unprecedented. I don’t expect this trend to continue, but the playoffs are all about momentum. By that logic, Kansas City will win it all since they are so hot. Right?

 

Look for the home teams to reclaim dominance this weekend. I think both the Pats and Broncos take care of business. Cardinals too. Also, I think the Panthers should win but Seattle seems like a team on a mission. So I’m having trouble picking against them. The Panthers may be a little sluggish after the bye, while the Seahawks keep finding ways to win. Either way, it’s shaping up for some epic Conference Championships. All the remaining crews have solid rosters but I have to give New England the overall edge. It’s their’s to lose at this point. There is no Eli Manning to stop them this time. Who else has the guts to challenge Brady and the boys?

 

I’m kind of getting sad because I know football is going to end soon. Let’s enjoy the time we left and try to not get too emotional. Shit, here come the tears. These are the NFL playoff staff picks for the Divisional round:

 

Divisional Round2

 

 

Wild Card Picks

 

 


The NFC Least

Written by :
Published on : December 27, 2015

 

 

Are you ready for another .500 division winner? Washington is now the the NFC East champ after beating the Eagles 38-24. Maybe an 8-8 Skins team can get the honor of getting destroyed by the Seahawks or Vikings as they host the wild card.

 

Currently, Washington is 8-7 with a 3-2 record in the division. Giants and Eagles both have 6 wins and Dallas brings up the rear at 4-10. Apparently, average is enough to secure a home field playoff game. This group gets coverage like no-other and I’m unfortunately adding to it. Or at minimum, trying to highlight that they shouldn’t always be featured on the big networks. No matter what. Below is a quick breakdown of the “powerhouse” NFC Least.

 

Dallas Cowboys

 

As a Dez Bryant fantasy owner, this year has been rough. I kept him on the bench while he got healthy, hoping him and Romo would tear up the second half of the season, just as many Dallas faithful prayed for. That never really worked out. Now, Kellen Moore, of Lions’ 3rd string QB fame, is starting under center. It’s a mess in Jerry World. Which college player with a checkered past will they draft next?

 

Philadelphia Eagles

 

In the 40-17 loss to the Cardinals, RB DeMarco Murray had only 2 attempts for 3 yards. That’s inexcusable. Philly is one of the most Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde teams we have. They either drop 40 or more often then not, get 40 dropped on them. Coach Chip Kelly may get pushed out of office. Everyone talks about the offense but it’s the defense that can’t stop anybody. Who cares how many plays you can run if you can’t tackle on the other side of the ball?

 

New York Giants

 

Even with WR Odell Beckham Jr playing amazing, this offense hasn’t been great. They are now out of the post-season hunt so OBJ’s suspension doesn’t really matter to anyone besides fantasy owners. Once again, we will hear whispers of coach Tom Coughlin maybe losing his job. Like we have heard for the last ten years. It should be fair to note that since Peyton is out, Eli should be more powerful. Kind of like a weird Highlander type situation. Eli absorbs all the Manning power. And if Peyton returns then Eli will drop off. Simple Archie-nomics. But even that magic can’t save the G-men now.

 

Washington Redskins

 

They aren’t great but…….DJax is back! Four TD’s in the last six games has added the spark this crew needs. They can kind of run the ball with either Alfred Morris or Matt Jones and their D has mostly held up. But QB Kirk Cousins is the reason this team still has life. He has limited his turnovers and started to build some nice chemistry with the likes of Reed, Garcon and Jackson. I don’t see this franchise making much of a run towards the Super Bowl but I don’t think anyone picked them to win the NFC East either. Also, they should change their name to something less offensive. Seriously.

Last question is, which wild card team is going to get the chance to beat the Skins? Because they will lose in the first round.

 

Please, prove me wrong.

 

 


Champ and Chump: Week 8

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Published on : November 7, 2015

 

As we reach the halfway point of the NFL season, and the first college football playoff rankings are revealed, we crown a true champion in this week’s Champ and Chump. The World Series is over, the dust has settled on the infields soon to be covered by snow in many parts of this nation and we bid farewell to America’s past-time for 4-5 months. This week we welcome a couple first timers to our Champ and Chump section, but also see a familiar face. Spoiler alert: My Detroit Lions are the definition of “Chump”. Alex always said in his NFL Spread picks, “Always bet on the Packers”, well you might as well always bet against the Lions. But before I go on a 6-page tangent that goes through all the feels, six beers, and a box a Kleenex, I’ll just cut to the picks for Champ and Chump this week.

Champ: Kansas City Royals

The Royals getting hype in the 9th inning of their series winning game 5 matchup with the Mets.

 

Not too much of a surprise here. Let’s face it, if you win the World Series, or any championship for that matter, you have a great shot at finishing as my Champ of the week. A year after losing Game 7 of the World Series to the San Francisco Giants, the Royals had one goal all season long, and for the most part they played pretty consistent baseball to get there. As a Tigers fan, I know all too well how good these Royals are and have been the past few years. Often described as a gnat, or pest, that just won’t go away, they battle for 9 innings, and most times end up on top. They made great moves at the trade deadline, and I declared them winners there, and a few months later, those moves paid off. A quick 5 game dismantling of the New York Mets gave the Royals their first World Series title since 1985. Hats off to them.

 

Honorable Mention:

Drew Brees- 39-50 for 505 yards with 7 touchdowns. 91.7 QBR and a passer rating of 131.7 begs the question, “Is this a video game?” Big win over the Giants and Eli, mentioned below

Eli Manning- Weird to have a loser from a game in the same “Champ” category but what else could you have asked Eli to do vs the Saints? 30-41 for 350 and 6 touchdowns with zero turnovers. QBR or 94.1 and a passer rating of 138.2, insane.

Andre Drummond- Pistons fans haven’t had much to cheer about the past six or seven years but they have an absolute star in the making at center. Through four games, Drummond is averaging 20/20 a game following a monster performance vs Indiana where he scored 25 and ripped down 29 boards.

 

 

Chump: Minnesota Golden Gophers’ late 4th quarter clock management

Because of the terrible clock management, Michigan once again holds the Little Brown Jug.

 

A little over a week ago, Minnesota football coach Jerry Kill had to resign due to health reasons. In a very sad press conference, Kill was emotional as he knew that coaching the game he loved was taken away from him far too soon. Kill was building a very successful program at Minnesota, a tough feat to achieve. From a 3 win season in his first year, to coming one win shy of a Big Ten West title last year. He led the Gophers to a 4-2 start before having to say goodbye. Tracy Claeys, an assistant under Kill, took over the job as interim head coach and figures to have a legitimate shot to become the long term replacement. After an emotional week, the Gophers and Gopher fans were ready to “win one for the gipper” as they say. They welcomed the Michigan Wolverines for a game on Saturday night. A back and forth game had Minnesota driving deep into Michigan territory, down 3 with under a minute to play. Then with 19 seconds left Minnesota thought they had it, a touchdown pass to win the game, but it was reviewed and called down. Minnesota had the ball, first and goal at the 1-yard line. Apparently, Minnesota spent no time drawing up a play just in case their touchdown was reversed because they got to the line, the ball was spotted, the clock began and they went on to waste a dozen seconds before even snapping the ball. Minnesota’s quarterback then ran around and threw the ball away leaving them 2 seconds left. They called timeout (yes they had a timeout) and ultimately opted for a quarterback sneak which came up short, and they lost. Two things really bothered me about this complete mismanagement of the clock: For one, call timeout as soon as the play is reversed and you would have four cracks at it from the 1-yard line, and secondly, you’re down 3, kick the field goal and force OT. Michigan was down to their backup quarterback due to an injury, so trust that your quarterback can outduel him in overtime. Also to quote Brian Piccolo from the famous Brian’s Song, “When you dedicate a game to somebody, you are then supposed to go out and win it, idiot. Pat O’Brien never said let’s blow one for the gipper.”

 

Dishonorable Mention:

Detroit Lions- Congratulations to the Lions as they now suck on two continents, a tough feat. Falling to 1-7 across the pond to the woeful Kansas City Chiefs by a score of 45-10 has led to the firing of their President and General Manager, a week after firing a couple coaches. Cheers Lions fans, it literally cannot get worse (we’ve already achieved 0-16), so hang your hat on that.

Los Angeles Lakers- The Lakers and NBA fans couldn’t wait for Kobe Bryant to return this season, and in what may be his final season he is far from riding off into the sunset on a high note. Sitting at 0-4 Kobe’s $25 million per year contract is easily the worst contract in sports right now… well, aside from Bobby Bonilla still getting paid in New York. The guy is shooting 32% from the field, and just 20% from 3-point land, averaging just 16 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists per game. To make matters worse, first round pick Deangelo Russell appears to be struggling compared to a lot of the other top-10 picks from this past draft.

Chelsea Football Club- In England’s Premier League, Chelsea has enjoyed much success in the 21st century and have done so while having some of the most loathsome creatures take the pitch in their all blue kits. Being a Manchester United fan, there isn’t much I enjoy more than seeing Chelsea completely crumbling right now. Currently sitting in 15th place in the table, just four points from relegation, has Chelsea frantically clawing to stay above the cut. While I am sure they will avoid relegation, it is still a bit satisfying to watch them struggle.

 

 

 


Champ and Chump: Week 5

Written by :
Published on : October 15, 2015

 

 

Welcome back to another installment of Champ and Chump. The Major League Playoffs are in full swing, college football is at the halfway point of the season and we are beginning to separate the contenders from the pretenders around the NFL. Hockey is back, and the NBA is on its way with a few more preseason tilts left for each team. Be sure to check out a couple recent articles by Antoine and Patrick to educate yourself on what to expect from the NHL and NBA this season. As for me this week, here’s a look at the champs and chumps.

 

Champ: University of Michigan Football

Harbaugh and khakis have led the Wolverines to the nation’s top ranked defense.

 

It was only a matter of time before Jim Harbaugh was going to revitalize the football program at Michigan, but I’m not sure even the biggest Wolverine slappy thought it would be this fast. Just like Rome wasn’t built in a day, realistic expectations had Michigan needing a full season under their belts before they could compete for a conference championship, let alone a national championship. After just 6 games, Harbaugh and company look primed and ready for potentially both as they dismantled Northwestern this past weekend 38-0. It was the third consecutive shutout for the Wolverines who have outscored their last three opponents 97-0. Michigan has the nation’s #1 ranked defense and the offense seems to be finding a groove too. Climbing up to #12 in the rankings has folks in Ann Arbor ready to explode and with in-state rival Michigan State coming to town this weekend, expect the college football world to be glued to some Big Ten action.

 

Honorable Mention:

MLB Divisional Rounds- With at least two of the four going to the maximum 5 games and the other two looking like they may as well, the 2015 playoffs have gotten off to an awesome start.

Eli Manning- For as much shit as people give this guy (myself included), he’s having one hell of a season and Sunday Night was no exception. He went 41-54, for 441 yards and 3 touchdowns including the winner with 21 ticks left.

Andy Dalton- Leading the Bengals to an undefeated record thus far is anything but expected but perhaps something we need to get used to. After all, the guy’s made the playoffs every year. He went 30-44, for 331 with 3 touchdowns in an overtime win over the Seahawks Sunday afternoon.

 

 

 

Chump: Bret Bielema

 

If you didn’t see it, Bret Bielema and the Arkansas Razorbacks went down to Tuscaloosa to take on the Crimson Tide this past weekend. While Alabama went on to win the game, Bielema himself looked like a loser on two fronts. One, he coached the losing team, which is no embarrassing feat when you play Bama. However, after an interception in the first half, a little shoving happened, all of it very mild and the type of behavior you’d expect to see on a football field after almost every play. Bielema is seen in a video getting in between the players to separate this “confrontation” that is clearly not going to escalate, and then sells a shove by flopping away from the Bama player, getting the referee to throw a flag. This immature small victory causes Bielema to celebrate like a 5-year old who just knocked down his first couple pins in bumper bowling. I’m a big soccer fan, and much like we see in the NBA nowadays too, I am ok with a little selling of the foul every once in a while. Granted, there better be some contact, I am 100% against completely flopping. In the case with Bielema, you’re a coach. You should be setting the example for the players on the field, and instead you’re desperately trying to sell that to get your team 15 yards? It is cheap, classless and down right embarrassing. Stay on the sidelines and let the players determine the outcome of the game because after all, you were hired to coach. You do remember how to coach right? (12-19 career record at Arkansas)

 

Dishonorable Mention:

Rutgers QB Chris Laviano- Ugh this poor guy. In the final seconds, on 4th down near midfield with his team down 7, he spikes the ball trying to stop the clock turning the ball over to Michigan State.

Golden Tate- Saying that Lion fans have “turned their backs” on the Lions? Really?! You’re 0-5, have one playoff win in 57 years, you find any and every way to lose while making millions of dollars, yet they owe you more?… he has since apologized but the damage is done.

US Men’s Soccer- On Saturday night, the USMNT had one last chance to clinch a spot in the 2017 Confederation’s Cup after losing during the Gold Cup this past summer. Played in Pasadena, California, the US Men got on the board early only to lose 3-2 in extra time. These guys have been absoluty Jekyll and Hyde recently, when it matters most they’ve faltered.

 


Football is a Cruel Bitch

Written by :
Published on : September 22, 2015

Mama said there’d be days like this.

Coming from Detroit, I’m used to football bringing me more pain than pleasure. It just comes with the territory of being raised a Lions fan. I’ve grown accustomed to Sundays that are filled with heartache and rage. Screaming at the TV and cursing the Gods, old and new. Like a true battered lover, I blame myself. It’s my fault for still investing so much in a team that I know was placed on this earth to bring grief to Southeast Michigan, as well as those poor fools like myself who have moved on geographically but can’t shake the Honolulu Blue and Silver disease of our homeland.

 

If this was about just another Lions loss then I probably would not be writing this. I can deal with a Lions loss, I’ve been here before. Sure, this was one of the more painful regular-season losses in recent memory, especially for a team with such high hopes for the season. But shitting the bed against a (in my opinion, lesser) division opponent is nothing new for me. This past Sunday, September 20th, was continuously brutal from beginning to end, and I feel like I just have to vent my rage and frustration in hopes that it will help someone else….. Or that someone will help me. Please, I beg you to help me.

 

I have no words

 

As if the Lions loss wasn’t enough, I may have had the worst day in the history of fantasy sports and it starts with my survivor pool. After having selected the Steelers to beat the 49ers at home, I stupidly overthought the decision and made a last second switch to the Rams. My reasoning was that St Louis looked very strong, especially on defense, against the Seahawks in their win at home in week 1, and that the Steelers had not. All of that vanished on the road when the Rams traveled to play the (previously thought) piss-poor Redskins. Everyone except the other person who took the Steelers in the pool were eliminated when they picked the Saints, Colts and Dolphins to win this week. If I hadn’t have tinkered myself to a loss, I could be one of only two remaining in the pool, vying for a nice chunk of change. Okay, what can you do, it was a crazy week and everyone lost. My dear friend, Trent, will be taking home the big prize after only two weeks. I guess I can live with that.

 

The struggle continued and I remained the butt of some cosmic joke as I limped to three losses in three different fantasy football leagues. It was truly a losing day for the ages. In my favorite league, where I am the commissioner, my starting running back tandem of Jeremy Hill and Ameer Abdullah combined to give me a whopping negative-one point. NEGATIVE-ONE! I would have been better off leaving those two positions empty. How the fuck does that even happen? If that wasn’t enough, I left Travis Benjamin on my bench with his 3 total touchdowns. I might have actually won if I had started him over Mike Evans, who also gave me a big, fat zero.

 

So my big money league team started off poorly. Maybe my other two leagues have greener pastures ahead. WRONG….. My starting QB in league #2 is Tony Romo, so those dreams are broken along with his left clavicle. Hopefully my backup, Eli Manning can keep the interceptions under control and help me get the wins I need until Romo comes back, but I’m not very optimistic.

 

Poor Romo

 

My other QB, my first round pick, Andrew Luck, is playing about as ugly as his beard through two weeks. Like, really bad. He has 3 touchdown and 5 interceptions, to go along with a 54.7% completion rate. I’m going to attribute this to the fact that he has played top defenses each week but still, he is supposed to be one of the best and he looks like Blaine Gabbert out there. But I digress.

 

Only two weeks into football and I’m already starting to lose hope. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. This was supposed to be my year. Two weeks ago I was so vibrant and full of life; ready to take on the world. Now I feel dejected, lost and alone. A broken soul and a lost heart, longing for something or someone to bring me back to life. I’m just not sure it’s going to happen and I don’t know why I continue to do this to myself.

 

Like some devil-filled junkie, I’m still chasing the dragon. The memory of how sweet it once was fuels my quest to get back to that feeling. I remember making the playoffs and winning the league. I remember the Lions’ winning a playoff game (sad but that’s as good as it’s ever gotten). I just need to get back on my feet, that’s all. It won’t always be this bad, I just know it. If just a few things go my way then it’ll all be better. So here’s to hoping and praying that the Football Gods have some mercy on me before I break. Cuz this drug is something I just can’t quit.

 

anymore touchdowns

 

 

 


Champ and Chump of the Weekend

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Published on : September 16, 2015

 

Fans rejoiced this past weekend as the NFL kicked off its 2015 season. Add in a couple big college football tilts and the U.S. Open in New York, and it made for one jam packed weekend in sports. Week 1 in the NFL had some great story lines and some memorable moments. With that in mind, here’s my Champ and Chump of the weekend.

 

Champ: Marcus Mariota

13-16, 209 yards, 4 touchdowns, 0 turnovers. 95.7 QBR, 158.3 Passer Rating in a 42-14 victory over Tampa Bay

All he does is win.

 

In a much anticipated match up featuring the top two quarterbacks taken in the 2015 NFL draft, and the last two Heisman trophy winners, Marcus Mariota looked a lot more NFL ready than Jameis Winston, who threw a pick-six with his first throw. Many doubted Mariota coming into this season, fearing his style wouldn’t translate to the NFL, a trend that has been true with former Oregon quarterbacks in the past. Through one week, Mariota has silenced his critics for now, and the Jameis supporters have to hope that Winston’s career takes off much like the career of a former legend who also started his NFL career with a pick-six—Brett Favre.

 

Honorable Mention:

Michigan State football- Huge win over #7 Oregon avenging last year’s loss in Eugene

Novak Djokovic- Defeated Roger Federer for the US Open Championship, his 10th career major win

Zack Greinke- Pitched 8 scoreless innings vs Arizona to improve to 17-3 on the season, 1.61 ERA, 0.85 WHIP…truly remarkable season, could go down as one of the best seasons ever.

 

 

Chump: New York Giants

Rashad Jennings summing up how the Giants ended the game.

 

On a play that may be scrutinized as much as the Seattle Seahawks bonehead decision to throw the ball at the 1-yard line in last year’s Super Bowl, Eli Manning left many fans scratching their heads yesterday. The New York Giants were just about to shock the defending division champion Dallas Cowboys Sunday night when Eli Manning and company did the seemingly unthinkable. Up 23-20, the Giants had a 3rd and goal at the Cowboy’s 1-yard line with just over 90 seconds left. Out of timeouts, Dallas had no way of stopping the clock. The Giants had them on their heels, all they had to do was punch it in. Hell, they had two chances if they wanted.  Worst case scenario, they come up short on 3rd down and kick the field goal to go up 6 and leave Dallas with under a minute and no timeouts to drive for a touchdown. Another scenario, on a potential fourth down, if the Giants came up short, Dallas would have to go some 99 yards without any timeouts for a touchdown, or some 60 yards for a field goal try with like 45 seconds left. Instead, on 3rd and 1, Eli dropped back to throw, and threw the ball away avoiding the pressure, but ultimately also avoiding the 40 second runoff that may have helped win New York the game. To make matters worse, it has been reported Eli told running back Rashad Jennings to intentionally not score with the hopes of draining the clock. Well, the G-Men may not have won the game but they did win the award for chump of the week.

 

Dishonorable Mention:

Adam “Pac Man” Jones- Flagged and fined for slamming Oakland Raider Amari Cooper’s head into his helmet

Florida football coach Jim McElwain- Childish tirade on the sidelines while berating a player

Detroit Lions/Offensive Coordinator Joe Lombardi- After leading 21-3 at San Diego, the Lions

gave up 30 unanswered points and lost 33-28. Calvin Johnson targeted just 4 times (2 catches)

 


Roger Pretzel’s Cloudy Crystal Ball: NFC East

Written by :
Published on : August 27, 2015

 

There is no other division in the NFL in which the specter of injury looms so heavily over every team. Dallas has its brilliant but weary O-line protecting a fragile veteran QB, Philadelphia has built a winning crew that can sustain injury up to a point, the Giants are looking to rebound after two seasons of a seriously depleted squad, and Washington has brought a curse upon itself for not changing its unfortunate and offensive image.

 

Sweet crystal ball: murky and jumbled though your whispers may be, illuminate our way!

 

Dallas Cowboys:

 photo dallascowboys_zpsl1ytzif4.jpg

 

There was a brief period of time where I didn’t totally hate the Cowboys. I moved away from general knee-jerk disdain and grew to recognize their brilliant offensive line. I also realized that Tony Romo is a solid, likable, and hardworking quarterback, and even thought that Jerry Jones’s desperate ramblings became amusing, endearing even. Then along came Dez Bryant. The dude is by far my least favorite NFL superstar. He’s the epitome of a diva and I hate his whininess towards referees, as well as his frequent fights with coaches and teammates. I will never deny that he is a fantastic talent, but as a human personality, I’m just kind of grossed out by his ego and sense of entitlement. He is Calvin Johnson’s evil twin, no doubt about it.

So here we are in 2015 and I think that Jerry Jones knows in his wizened coal-black heart that last year was the ‘boys best chance at making a run for the title in a long time, and the best chance they’ll get for quite a while. Romo is good for another couple of seasons as long as he stays healthy, but that surgically repaired back is one hell of a sword of Damocles hanging over the entire organization. That previously mentioned O-line is the key to keeping things regular, but even they’re starting to show signs of wear and tear. Should they falter, this will prove very problematic for Darren McFadden.

 

The crystal ball says:

 

The crystal ball likes Dez much more than I do, predicting a stellar season for a big time receiver in his prime. Romo will hold down the fort, thanks to that crucial offensive line that will suffer only minor injuries, and remain more or less intact through the season. Darren McFadden will show promise at first and then eventually disappoint. Dallas has a shot at the wildcard spot but she’s still a leaky boat holding herself above the surface in a division that is returning to its highly competitive ways.

 

New York Giants:

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I think it’s pretty easy to get hyperbolic over New York’s potential this season, but I’m afraid that’s more from what’s expected of them than actual evidence. Sure, Eli’s too good to keep playing so poorly, and it’s easy to write off the last two seasons because of the mass of injuries sustained by Big Blue, but that’s also the lazy approach. Like many, when it comes to analyzing the Giants, I want to have my cake and eat it too. Yes, I think a healthier team will win more games, but I’m still dubious that this is a club that’s going to sweep back into the division.

I’m not particularly concerned about the stories surrounding Eli Manning’s contract, but regardless of what he purportedly wants, the fans and coaching staff need to see his ratio of INT’s to TD’s drop precipitously. He’s certainly proved it can go either way. I also didn’t like how Jason Pierre-Paul dealt with his team following that unfortunate sparkler accident. It looks like he’ll be returning to the Giants, and will play before the first half of the season is out, but his cagey statements from the hospital and seeming lack of interest to meet with the team’s officials had me seriously doubting his return to New York, or anywhere. At least JPP can rest assured that he won’t go down in history as the NY Giant guilty of the stupidest unnecessary injury of all time…

 

The crystal ball says:

 

Eli will bring his pick numbers down to below Andy Dalton levels, which will be considered a victory. There will be lots and lots of speculation as to whether or not Tom Coughlin keeps his job. He will, while chomping angrily on his gum the whole time. Jason Pierre-Paul will come back. He’ll do fine. Odell Beckham Jr. and Victor Cruz will be frustrated with the heavy coverage they receive from defenses that aren’t particularly scared of the run game. The Giants improve, making them a viable threat, but not as much as expected. THEN things will get crazy with Eli’s contract!

 

Washington Redskins:

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It’s pretty obvious to me that the central cause of the Washington’s woes over the last few years have been due to a longstanding Native American curse brought on by owner Dan Snyder’s absolute refusal to change the franchise’s name and image in the face of good taste or common decency. RGIII is constantly nursing a bum knee or sitting concussed on the bench; relegated to selling sandwiches alongside a once obese pedophile. Now, Niles Paul and Junior Galette are out for the whole damn season. It doesn’t seem fair, and it shouldn’t be… Unless you remember that this team is named after a derogatory term coined during the genocide of an entire population. Feel free to write Dan Snyder a letter telling him how you feel.

Thanks to the curse, we’re left with an extremely weak offensive line supporting a glass-jawed QB. However, the defensive line is really interesting, and I think it’s the best thing the ‘skins have got going for them. There’s a good pass rush to be had there, and a good defense overall if the secondary can hold up. I don’t care if it’s Kirk Cousins or Colt McCoy, but either of these dudes will fare better than Griffin.

 

The crystal ball says:

 

More deserved suffering for a team with a shamefully behind-the-times character. RGIII will continue to fail and the Redskins will focus more on a mediocre ground game because of it. Fans can expect some joy through the defense, and some excitement when either of the backup QBs start airing it out to DeSean Jackson, the most electric offensive weapon this team has.

 

Philadelphia Eagles:

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Chip Kelly is the closest thing the NFL has to a mad scientist. He’s a singular coach in that his megalomaniacal vision for his club’s success is less predicated upon individual player performance and more so on the crazy scheme in his head. I mean that as a compliment. The Foles/Bradford trade wasn’t about Foles’ merits or deficiencies on the field; it was about Sam Bradford working better in Kelly’s vision.

So Bradford and Murray are going to be the experiment and the gamble. Both are players that fit with Chip Kelly’s Eagles (trademark registered), but both are also injury prone. Unlike other teams in the NFC East, Philadelphia has a deeper bench. Mark Sanchez works well in this offense and Ryan Matthews and Darren Sproles can certainly help take some of the pressure off of Murray. All the meticulously planned and thought out offense in the world can’t cover a weak defense that ranked near the bottom of the league last season. If things looked as exciting for the Eagles on the other side of the ball then they would be a true Super Bowl contender.

 

The crystal ball says:

 

The ball likes the Eagles this year, and thinks they’re the frontrunner to win the division, thanks in part to a cushy schedule. The mad scientist has the offense that he wants and I think it’ll come through for him. The defense will improve incrementally but there’s going to be plenty of shootouts to keep Bradford’s throwing arm in shape. Finally, I’m proud of myself for having made it this far without making a single Tim Tebow joke.

 


Eli Manning Can’t Be Serious

Written by :
Published on : August 19, 2015

 

 

 

With the recent rash of NFL QBs inking lucrative contract extensions, it looks like Eli Manning is next up to the plate.

 

First it was Ben Roethlisberger, who got the ball rolling with his whopper of a contract that will earn him $60.75 million over the first 3 years. Then it was Cam Newton, Ryan Tannehill, Russell Wilson, and most recently, Phillip Rivers. All of these guys are pretty talented and deserve to make their money, but some of them have accomplished more than the others. Big Ben and Russell have both taken their team to the mountain top, while Cam, Tannehill and Rivers certainly have not, which is fine. There’s a difference between paying for a known commodity and investing in your future. Get your money guys.

 

What they’ve done is inflate the market and that has two-time Super Bowl Champion, Eli Manning, seeing dollar signs big time. To the point that he reportedly now wants to be the highest paid player in the NFL.

 

 

That’s right, Peyton’s little, interception happy brother, Eli, wants to be paid more than Aaron Rodgers, arguably the best quarterback in the game.

 

When’s the last time you heard someone arguing that Eli Manning is the best QB in the game? Don’t worry, I’ll wait. That’s what I thought. Never. You know why? Because he isn’t even close.

 

Eli’s face when he’s thinking about all that money.

 

He must be crazy to think that the New York Giants and Tom Coughlin are going to break the bank on a 35 year old (when his current contract ends) QB. One who routinely places in the top 10 in interceptions thrown. Sure, he has won 2 Super Bowls, and both of the wins were only possible due to late comebacks orchestrated by him (and helped mightily by some amazing catches), but let’s get serious. He is in the twilight of his career and almost certainly will begin to decline very soon.

 

If Giants fans are getting nervous about this prospect and are looking for someone to blame, then they should look across the country at the man they traded away for their starting QB, Phillip Rivers. Last week he inked a huge extension that guaranteed $65 million. That’s for a a guy with a 4-5 playoff record who has never played in a Super Bowl. That’s just about as crazy as Eli wanting to be the highest paid player in the game, but after Rivers screwed the market, you can’t really blame the guy.

 

That face.

 

I’ve heard the argument that with the salary cap increasing every year, contracts like Rivers’ and (potentially) Mannings’ aren’t that crazy, but I just don’t buy that. The fact is, Aaron Rodgers is the standard among quarterbacks, and no one who is that much worse than him should be making more than his $22 million per year, even if that contract is 2 1/2 years old.

 

Sorry Eli, but you just don’t deserve it. I know about the wins, the championships, the pro bowls. But I also know about the interceptions and that you haven’t been to the playoffs since 2011. Sure, you can play out your last year and get that one year, $24 million franchise tag payday, but after that you can be sure that the Giants will not be making you the highest paid player in the game. And if they do, fans in New York should get out the torches and pitchforks, because their team will have just sacrificed their salary cap, and future, for a much-too-close-to-40 years old quarterback who has proven he can’t carry the team anymore.

 

 


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