The NFL free agency mambo

Written by :
Published on : March 15, 2017

 

NFL free agency has only been a few days but already the complete landscape of football has changed. Huge names have moved and found new homes while others have decided to hang up the cleats and retire. Millions are being tossed around and it’s a lot to process. Let ScoreBoredSports ease your weary brain with this helpful review of all the big transactions so far. Strap on your dancing shoes and let’s all do the free agency mambo.

 

WR Brandon Marshall to Giants

2 year/$12 million dollar deal saves Marshall from moving homes or facilities as he switches to the Giants. The former New York Jet will join Odell Beckham Junior in the receiving corps. Should make for a pretty solid unit.

 

WR Pierre Garçon to 49ers

This organization is totally rebuilding. They need offensive weapons. Garçon is nice possession receiver but it’s unsure who will be throwing him the ball. Got to start somewhere, though it looks like San Francisco overpaid.

 

 

OT Ricky Wagner and OL TJ Lang to Lions

Oh boy, the Lions add some beef upfront to help keep Stafford alive. As a fan, I love any effort to improve the o-line and help our lackluster running game.

 

TE Dwayne Allen to Pats

This was a trade with the Colts where Allen and a 6th round pick went to New England for only a 4th round pick. Seems like a small price tag for a guy that will blossom under Brady. But that’s what the Pats do.

 

RB Mike Tolbert to Bills

Mike packs his bags and leaves the Panthers to join Shady McCoy and the other backs in Buffalo. This team loves to the run the ball so look for Tolbert to get the short yardage/goal line duties.

 

 

QB Brian Hoyer to 49ers

I expect the new heads of the organization to draft a QB but this will be their starter for the time being. Hoyer has flashed moments where it looks like he has all the tools for the job. This will be a tough test. Hopefully, they can add a few more pieces around him.

 

S Barry Church to Jags

Jacksonville focused on defense in last year’s draft and maybe those picks will pay off but they couldn’t stop anyone last season. Church is a vet who Jacksonville hopes can bring some leadership to the secondary.

 

WR DeSean Jackson to Bucs

DJax headed to Tampa where his skills should pair well with star WR Mike Evans. This could be a nasty duo. This team has playoff sleeper written all over it.

 

 

K Steve Hauschka to Bills

Hey, kickers matter and Steve is one of the best. The long time Seahawk is bringing his talents to north beach. This is a good pick up for any team.

 

WR Kenny Britt to Browns

Get that money Kenny, but it sucks to be on Cleveland. This team needs tons of help and they don’t seem close to an answer. Would love to be wrong.

 

CB AJ Bouye to Jags

Jacksonville continues to invest on the defensive side of the ball with the splashy signing one of the top cornerbacks available, but they paid for it. 5 year/$67 million.

 

 

WR Alshon Jeffery to Eagles

Philly adds a big time target for a 1 year/$14 million deal. This is all about fit. That’s why the contract was only for a season. If Jeffery soars, expect a huge offer next year.

 

CB Logan Ryan to Titans

The other top defensive back on the market lands in Tennessee. This is another team that is quietly building a real competitor.

 

DE Julius Peppers to Panthers

Homecoming. I love when a player gets a chance to head back to his old team for another tour. Fans bust out their old jerseys and we all have fun.

 

 

WR Terrelle Pryor to Washington

1 year/$8 million and suddenly you are QB Kirk Cousin’s new favorite target. He will replace Jackson and keep the passing attack rolling in the Capitol.

 

TE Martellus Bennett to Packers

Just what Aaron Rodgers needs, a Super Bowl winning-mega talent. Ugh. The only worse headlines are from the real news.

 

WR Brandin Cooks to Pats

God damn it. How do they keep reloading so fast? It’s almost like every player in the league wants to play there and win one of those fancy trophies. New England sent their 1st and 3rd round draft picks to New Orleans for Cooks and a 4th rounder.

 

 

TE Lance Kendricks to Packers

Looks like Green Bay is following the Pats model of the two TE sets as they add another big body pass catcher.

 

WR Kendall Wright to Bears

Chicago needed to do something after losing top wide out Jeffery. Wright becomes the go-t0 guy in the Windy City. The real question is, with Jay Cutler gone, who is throwing the ball?

 

QB Nick Foles to Eagles

Another reunion. Foles will presumedly be the number two quarterback behind Wentz, who just finished his rookie year. Foles should be considered a top tier backup. Someone who is ready to start and win in the event of an injury.

 

 

RB Eddie Lacy to Seahawks

The big back joins Seattle on a 1 year/$5 million deal with $3 mil fully guaranteed. His weight is an issue. Some reports have him at 267 lbs. That’s heavy for a running back. The hope is he becomes the new Marshawn Lynch but that may be unrealistic.

 

QB Mike Glennon to Bears

Chicago has finally cut ties with Jay Cutler and they need a new signal caller. Glennon may not set Chicago on fire but he is young, 6’6″ and has experience. Not a sexy signing but the free agency market for QB’s is slim.

 

Some big names are still available. Guys like Dont’a Hightower, Adrian Peterson and Colin Kaepernick are still looking for a team. The NFL draft is a month away so we can expect to see some more action in the coming days. But most of the high profile talent is already off the board. This is such an exciting time for football. I can’t wait for the season opener.

 

Show me the money.

 

 


Roger Pretzel’s Haunted Dungeon Divisional Playoffs: Matt Ryan Finds Devonta Freeman For Huge Gain

Written by :
Published on : January 18, 2017

 

Welcome back to Roger Pretzel’s Haunted Dungeon. In this spooky sanctum, I’ve poured over all the replay tape to come up with my favorite NFL play of the week. Then it’s straight back to the projector to unspool a film you may have not been aware of…

 

The lights have dimmed, the knives are sharpened, and horrors lurk amongst the shadows.

 

Divisional Playoffs: Matt Ryan to Devonta Freeman For Huge Gain

Enough with the heartbreaker history spiel: it looks like the Falcons have finally become the real deal. And while it sounds a bit crazy, I’m actually favoring them over the Pack for Sunday’s NFC championship tilt. They’re Super Bowl worthy when the defense steps up and we all know what this offense can do…

 

Two times on this play Seattle’s defense ends up chasing ghosts with a blitz attempt in which Matt Ryan drops back expertly and releases the ball off a back-foot throw while under respectable pressure from three Seattle linemen. When I saw the play live, I thought “Matty Ice” had gotten lucky on an ugly throw, but seen in replay that ball looks downright gorgeous.

 

After the catch, Freeman loses Bobby Wagner and cuts, causing safety Steven Terrell to lose his footing. The Falcons star back resembles a steam locomotive off the rails as he careens downfield with a burned Seattle secondary in hot pursuit. It’s actually a bit impressive that Kam Chancellor and DeAndre Elliott were able to catch up to him and prevent the TD. Do Atlanta fans dare get their hopes up? That’s for them to decide, but this was certainly a decisive victory.

 

Divisional Playoffs: The Green Slime

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Director: Kinji Fukasaku
Released: 1968

 

In this tantalizingly titled offering, east meets west in a joint effort by Metro Goldwyn-Mayer and Japanese studio, The Toei Company. Directed by Kinji Fukasaku, who is best known today for The Hunger Games predictor Battle Royale (2000), and the Battles Without Honor and Humanity series, in which Yakuza gangsters fight it out down and dirty in a postwar Hiroshima. The film was shot with a predominantly Japanese crew and American and European cast.

 

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This unusual historical collaboration is nothing compared to how strange the picture is, however. While there’s plenty of corn to be had with the intended demographic solidly resting with the kiddie-matinee crowd, this is far from your average penny-pinching sci-fi cheapie. There’s lots of Japanese styled miniature special effects, some truly trippy extra-terrestrial habitats, and a whole gang of rubber-suited monsters.

 

Amusingly enough, the plot itself is somewhat similar to Alien (1979) with the titular menace becoming an unknown stowaway on an interstellar aircraft that grows and mutates into a horde of crimson-eyed Cyclops, with wildly waving tentacles that shoot lasers. Certainly a little different aesthetically from H.R. Giger’s sleek and horrific creature design, but just as malevolent.

 

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It should go without saying that the visuals and frenzied tone are The Green Slime’s real charms but the just-adequate acting and hoary old love triangle plot add just enough human interest to keep one engaged in the haggard Troy McClure-esque alpha males duking it out over the leading lady.

 

The manic balls-to-the-wall zaniness of the picture is also amplified by a groovy theme song courtesy of Richard Delvy, in a tune that’s equal parts, catchy, fun, and terrible.

 

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Dig that slimy trailer:

 

Your new favorite B-flick theme song:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkFalUlcWY

 

Full movie (cropped) here. DVDs available on Amazon.

 

 


Roger Pretzel’s Haunted Dungeon Week 10: LeGarrette Blount Vs. Kam Chancellor and “Gutterballs”

Written by :
Published on : November 16, 2016

 

Welcome back to Roger Pretzel’s Haunted Dungeon. In this spooky sanctum I’ve poured over all the replay tape to come up with my favorite NFL play of the week. Then it’s straight back to the projector to unspool a film you may have not been aware of…

 

The lights have dimmed, the voodoo dolls pierced, and the walls drip with blood.

 

Week 10 Twofer: LeGarrette Blount VS. Kam Chancellor

Sunday Night Football’s rematch of Super Bowl XLIX was a real treat, with both teams showing off what they do best. The game-ending goal line stand by Seattle was awe-inspiring, but we only got to that point because of New England’s well oiled offense and champion caliber determination.

 

We’re doing a twofer this week with a couple of highlights during the game that featured both my favorite players from each team: LeGarrette Blount in New England, and Kam Chancellor in Seattle.

 

 

There are few backs in league you’d want more in short distance red zone situations than LeGarrette Blount. After his floundering days in Tampa Bay, he’s blossomed under Belichick’s undeniable genius. This power run works like a surfer riding a wave, as Blount and the Pats o-line keep riding out a powerful but finite Seattle push along a horizontal trajectory towards the goal line that finally peters out, allowing Blount to push through. Kam Chancellor, a guy I consider the best safety in the league, gets in on the act pushing sideways against Blount, but it’s too little too late as New England takes a big go-ahead touchdown on a play that epitomizes the very best of both downhill offense and defense in the NFL.

 

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Come the end of the game, we’re in a similar situation, and why wouldn’t you give it to Blount again? Because of number 31: Kam Chancellor. Nothing wrong with Blount going up and over to try and break the plane, and damned if he wasn’t close, but Chancellor comes in from the side again and grabs the New England back around the knees, tugging him back the few inches necessary to prevent a TD.

 

Like so many plays in a league full of lighting quick dudes, the actual play didn’t look like much besides a strong goal-line stand, but watching Chancellor do what he does in glorious slow-motion is just amazing. Every play in that final New-England-knocking-at-the-door series was notable, but Chancellor’s stop on Blount was a stark exhibition of how remarkable these NFL payers really are.

 

Week 10: Gutterballs

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Director: Ryan Nicholson
Released: 2008

 

Here’s another genuinely awful one for the hardcore sickos out there. Canuck director, Ryan Nicholson, began his career as an SFX makeup artist for horror/sci-fi/fantasy television and films, and like many folks toiling away in different stations of the entertainment industry, he wanted to make his own flicks, and went the DIY route by founding his own company, Plotdigger Films.

 

Nicholson’s tastes definitely tend towards the tasteless, and I’ve only managed to make it through three Plotdigger productions, giving up after this movie’s follow-up, the truly reprehensible and nauseating “Hanger” (2009), about a disfigured back-alley-dumpster-baby abortion survivor who goes on to seek vengeance.

 

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This one’s plot actually becomes quite convoluted as it progresses but the basic premise revolves around a group of kids sneaking into a bowling alley after-hours to compete in a tournament over the course of two nights that devolves into a skin-crawling rape scene and later a whole host of creative murders by a mysterious killer with a bowling ball bag atop his/her melon.

 

While this is a truly balls-out exercise in extreme cinema, it does harken back in large part to the 80’s slasher movie with its direct-to-video feel and atrociously obnoxious cast of what appear to be 30-somethings playing potty mouthed teens.

 

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Hack ‘n slash is the name of the game here and Nicholson does a dandy job of spicing up the kills with a blend of the ghastly and amusing. The two most memorable set pieces involve murder by sixty-nine sex position (suffocation via genitals!), and a decapitation by shotgun that is remarkable from a technical standpoint.

 

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Like I said, I’ve only made it through a few of Nicholson’s films , eventually giving up after the trashy and utterly sadistic tone became too much even for my depraved constitution.

 

This trailer does the film no justice but it is the best I could find:

 

And an example of what you’re in for with one of the film’s kill scenes:

 

Rental available on Netflix (DVD only). Cheap DVDs available on Amazon.

 


The ones I Love to Hate: NFL QB Edition

Written by :
Published on : September 4, 2016

 

 

We all have people we don’t like. We can never really like everyone. It’s just part of the human experience. Sometimes there is a legitimate reason for that dislike, perhaps the person has wronged you in some way or behaved in a way that just didn’t jive with you. Other times, there might not be a reason you dislike that someone, you just do. That’s okay too. Well as with most things in life, this can relate to sports as well.

 

Obviously we all have our hated rivals that we just can’t stand. Maybe it’s because they always beat your team’s ass on the field or maybe it’s because they are a pesky thorn in the side of your favorite squad as they try to win a championship. But there are also those guys that your team barely ever plays that you still can’t stand. It happens to us all, and I’m here to help you embrace that strong dislike, or dare I say hate, by giving you glimpse at the NFL QBs that I love to hate.

 

AARON RODGERS

 Most hated.

 

FUCK THIS GUY! When I was young, I didn’t think I could ever possibly hate a Packers QB more than I hated Brett Favre. Then this smug bastard plummeted in the 2005 draft and landed in Green Bay. He’s been making me hate my football life pretty much ever since. Remember that hail mary TD pass that was the result of a bullshit face mask call? Yeah, me too. I still see it in my nightmares every fucking night of my miserable Lions-loving life. The 49ers can fuck right off too for drafting Alex Smith over him. How did that work out? Whatever, I just have to hope Ziggy Ansah develops into a Rodgers killer and turns the tide in the Lions’ favor because I can’t take much more of this guy murdering the Lions.

 

JAY CUTLER

 A face only a mother could love.

 

I kind of feel bad for this dopey bastard but still, fuck him too. I know this list is starting out with the two biggest rivals of my favorite team, but hear me out. I’m pretty sure most Bears fans can’t stand Jay Cutler by now. He has continually underwhelmed as the guy leading the Bears’ offense. He pretty much squandered an offense that consisted of Matt Forte, Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffrey. Martellus Bennett, who recently left that offense, expressed frustration at Cutler’s decision making. “He just sucks. And he happens to have perhaps the most punchable face in all of the NFL.” I’m just happy that he hasn’t beaten the Lions in 6 straight meetings. Here’s to hoping we get to see this sad sack of trash lose to the Lions forever.

 

TOM BRADY

 Best Friends Forever.

 

In all reality, I should like this guy because I’m a huge University of Michigan fan but he still bothers the shit out of me. Ever since that first Super Bowl in 2001, I’ve had a simmering hatred for Tom Brady and the Patriots. You can see how highly I think of Tom and coach Belichick here. I fully accept and submit to the fact that they are the greatest coach/QB combination ever, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. There’s something infuriating about how easy he makes winning look. Maybe it’s the jealous rage inside of me fueled my desire to be part of a winner but I’m pretty sure it’s just that he kind of seems like an asshole. Also he’s homies with Donald Trump so he has to be shitty. If we’re lucky he will start to decline soon and we can stop having to hear about him and Roger Goodell fighting all the time.

 

RUSSELL WILSON

 What a tool.

 

It’s pretty well documented here at ScoreBoredSports that I can’t stand Russell Wilson. He’s such a tool. Like everyone else on this list outside of Jay Cutler, I accept that he is a very talented quarterback. His run at the end of last season was downright bananas. He’s going to be a good football player for a very long time. That’s what makes it even worse. I’m seriously going to have to deal with this guy’s bullshit for the next decade. His relationship with Ciara is enough to make you want to vomit. It all looks so staged. If I was a Seattle fan, I’d be stoked to have him but I think I speak for everyone outside of the Pacific Northwest when I say that I can’t wait for the time when he hangs up the cleats and walks off into the sunset. Maybe he can move to Tibet and become a monk. Perhaps even some sort of lifetime vow of silence can be arranged?

 

That’s it for the ones I love to hate. Which quarterbacks rub you the wrong way? Add your most hated in the comment section below, and stay tuned for other players that I love to hate.

 

 


Top Holdout Candidates Other Than DeAndre Hopkins

Written by :
Published on : July 31, 2016

 

 

Yesterday, Pro Bowl wide receiver, DeAndre Hopkins, failed to report Houston Texans training camp with the purpose of holding out for a better contract. He (rightfully) wants to be paid in a manner commensurate with his contributions to the team and says that he will not return until a new contract has been worked out. At 24, he became the centerpiece of an otherwise lackluster Texans’ offense, piling up 111 catches for 1,521 total yards, good for third-best in the NFL. Hopkins was the only bright spot on an offensive unit that saw four different quarterbacks take the field, and he became the first player to ever have 100 yards receiving from those four different QBs.

 

 DeAndre just wants to get paid his fair share.

 

For someone who is as important to the offense as he is, the $1 million base salary that he is earning under his current contract for the 2016 season means that he is grossly underpaid. In a field of work where tomorrow is never guaranteed (like the contracts) and the future is never certain, NFL players must maximize their value when they have the opportunity. DeAndre Hopkins realizes that there might not ever be another chance to get paid like he can right now so he is gambling on himself and hoping that the team realizes how important he is.

 

The DeAndre Hopkins situation got me thinking about which other players are being way underpaid in the league right now. Here are my top candidates to be the next to holdout for a new contract. Maybe it won’t happen until next year, but these guys are definitely being underpaid, or at least they think they are.

 

Derek Carr

This is the big one. Derek Carr is one of the best young QB talents in the league and he is making a laughable amount of money for someone who is future of the franchise and made a Pro Bowl last season. His $733,346 base salary is less than guys like Kyle Van Noy, Shaun Draughn, and Bishop Sankey. The added $741,691 in bonuses helps a little, but the fact is that he is far underpaid compared to other quarterbacks who have a similar level of talent. There’s no doubt that the Raiders will pay him his due eventually, but we all know how volatile of an environment the NFL is for its players and their worth. He might be best served to holdout now and try to get that paper.

 

 The Raiders have their QB of the future. Now it’s time to pay him like it.

 

Michael Bennett

Michael Bennett has been complaining about his current contract situation for a minute now. In his opinion he is better than the 26th best defensive end in the NFL, which is where his current base salary is on the spectrum of DE contracts. Bennett hinted at the idea of a holdout earlier this offseason for the second year in a row, but he also showed up to training camp this weekend, so it seems like he might not really have the stomach to go through with it. Either way, if you talk about the idea of holding out, then there is at least a chance that you’d do it. That’s why Michael Bennett made it on this list.

 

 Michael Bennett has been unhappy about his contract for a while. And he’s been taking it out on opposing QBs.

 

David Johnson

This dude came out of nowhere for the Arizona Cardinals and finished his rookie campaign last season with 13 total touchdowns, a rookie record for the NFL’s oldest franchise. From the time he entered the starting lineup in week 13 until the end of the season, no other player in the league averaged more yards from scrimmage per game than Johnson’s 131.7. He is just as dangerous in the pass game as in the run game and his playmaking ability means that he will quickly silence doubters this coming season and hang on to the starting role over Andre Ellington and Chris Johnson. And he is making peanuts compared to other star running backs. The fact that the Cardinals were able to snag him in the third round of last year’s draft means that he will make an average of just $729,843 a season until he is an unrestricted free agent in 2019. That won’t happen. Look for David Johnson to light the world afire once more this season and get himself a fat new contract next offseason.

 

 David Johnson is the most electrifying player on the Cardinals offense.

 

Khalil Mack

The Oakland Raiders have a pretty good problem on their hands. They have two young stars who they are underpaying right now. That means they are getting a ton of value for their dollar in two very important positions. Khalil Mack was selected to the Pro Bowl last year and holds the Raiders franchise record for sacks in a game (5) against the Broncos. Mack’s average of $5.1 million per year ranks 31st among outside linebackers and he won’t be a free agent until 2018. With the physical demands of playing outside linebackers and heightened injury risk that comes with playing such a violent position, it would not be at all surprising to see Khalil Mack holdout for a new contract next offseason if he plays as well this year as he did last. The Raiders would be smart to start preparing for the idea of having to pay both Derek Carr and Khalil Mack very soon.

 

 The kind of guy who can give you 5 sacks in one game is the kind of guy you pay to keep around.

 

Who do you think is a serious candidate to holdout for a new contract in the near future? Leave your answer in the comments below or tweet us @ScoreBored_SBS.

 


Four Players to Avoid in Fantasy Football in 2016

Written by :
Published on : July 26, 2016

 

 

 

Fantasy Football is almost here people. For many of us with real jobs and grown up responsibilities it’s our last way to be competitive with our friends and acquaintances. We get to be downright mean and hope for the misfortune of others. If you’re like me, you are looking for any type of insight in order to make yourself the best team possible, and if you strike out with a high draft pick then it can haunt you for the rest of the season. With that in mind, here are some players that you should really avoid in 2016.

 

Frank Gore

 

Frank Gore had a pretty decent 2015 while playing for a pretty bad Indianapolis Colts team. He rushed for 967 yards and six touchdowns, while fumbling the ball four times, including once on the 1-yard line. That’s not too bad for a guy who is 33 years old and was running behind a garbage offensive line. But don’t be fooled. Frank Gore is still 33 years old, and although the Colts drafted four offensive linemen, I foresee the play up front being subpar as they figure out what works and what doesn’t. With a decent back up (Robert Turbin) and some talented youngsters (Tyler Varga and Josh Ferguson) looking to take carries away from the old dog, it would be smart to pass over Frank Gore this year. You just don’t spend draft picks on a running back who is that old and has a poor offensive line.

 

Jeremy Hill

 

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t draft Jeremy Hill if he comes to you in a late-middle round, but the fact is that someone is going to draft him very high. Don’t be that person. Muhammad Sanu and Marvin Jones are gone, and Tyler Eifert is hurt. That’s just 1,929 total yards and 19 touchdowns, no big deal. Defenses are going to key in on the run game and hope that they can contain AJ Green. Look for the Bengals to see eight men in the box much more than they have in recent years. On top of that, Giovani Bernard is still going to split carries with him. I just don’t see enough here for Jeremy Hill to be worth the inevitably high position he will enjoy in most drafts. Do yourself and your team a favor and get someone else.

 

Jimmy Graham

 

Once upon a time Jimmy Graham was arguably the best tight end in the NFL. When he got traded from the Saints to the Seahawks many people thought that he would excel in that offense, but that did not happen. Before his season ended with a torn patellar tendon in week 12, it was clear that he was not a good fit in the Seahawks run-heavy offense, where the team misused him by trying to make him block for Marshawn Lynch. I just don’t see the Seahawks changing up the style of their offense and utilizing Jimmy Graham as the full-time receiver that he truly is. Add to that the fact that the patellar tendon injury will likely cause him to lose at least a little bit of that quickness and agility, and I just don’t see this as a very smart pick at tight end. Pass on Graham.

 

Teddy Bridgewater

 

After a pedestrian rookie season in 2014, many people thought that he would see a big uptick in his production in 2015. When he came into the NFL, accuracy was supposed to be one of his strengths but that seems to have disappeared now that he is in the big leagues. He just doesn’t throw the ball all that well. And he looks especially shaky on longer throws. To make matters worse, this might be the year that Adrian Peterson finally starts slowing down. Meaning a lot more pressure on a young and inaccurate quarterback. He’ll make some plays, especially with his legs, but look for his interceptions to be up and completion percentage to be down. You would be wise to let Teddy slide if he comes to you. Sorry Vikings’ fans.

 

Fantasy Football can be a cruel beast. One player can be the difference between a trip to the playoffs and a December full of sadness and loathing. If you want to field the best team possible then sometimes that means eschewing some big name players that have helped you be successful in the past or that you just plain like to watch. This isn’t business though, this is Fantasy Football, so avoid these guy and maybe you could be heading to the Championship this year.

 

 


How John Elway Revamped the Broncos and Built a Champion

Written by :
Published on : February 12, 2016

 

 

 

The two Broncos teams that appeared in Super Bowl 50 and Super Bowl XLVIII may have had many of the same players, but they were very different teams. Two years ago Peyton Manning and the offense had one of the most prolific units in recent memory, and they got demolished in the Super Bowl, by a score of 43-8. The Seahawks team that put such a hurting on them boasted a stifling defense that brought down the hammer on the NFL’s most high-flying offense. It was a battle of number one vs number one, and defense won in a big way.

 

The Broncos’ executive vice president and general manager seemingly took note of that Seahawks defense because just two years later, they used a nasty, attacking defense to put a hurt on the Carolina Panthers. Super Bowl 50 was once again the battle of a top offense and a top defense and the result was the same. In football, as in life, you must always be adapting in order to survive. In just two years, John Elway transformed the entire identity of his franchise, from head coach down, in order to not only survive but thrive, and win the greatest prize in all of sports. Here’s how it went down….

 

Shoring up the Defense

 Ward and Ware were two monster free agent pick ups.

 

After that crushing Super Bowl XLVIII defeat at the hands of the Seahawks defense, John Elway made it a point to fix the defense the following offseason. He added not one, but three, lynchpin type players to the Broncos defensive unit during free agency, in pass-rusher DeMarcus Ware, cornerback Aqib Talib, and safety TJ Ward. He also added first round cornerback Bradley Roby in the draft that year.

 

With an almost completely overhauled secondary and a potential hall of famer rushing opposing QBs along with a still improving but not-as-yet-godlike Von Miller, the Broncos had almost completely remade that part of their team. John Elway saw what the best teams in the league were doing in order to reach the next level and successfully emulated that. He should be given a ton of credit for the work he did in building that defense, but he wasn’t quite yet done with his overhaul of the team.

 

A New Coaching Regime

 Gary Kubiak did it!

 

Following the Broncos 24-13 divisional round playoff loss to the Colts last year, John Elway and former head coach John Fox decided that it would be best for coach Fox and the Broncos to mutually part ways. Elway was clearly not pleased by another year without advancing past the divisional round (in three of four years in Denver they had lost in that round), and felt that he find someone else to take them over the top. What a ballsy move that was. John Fox had 46-18 record in his four seasons in Denver and had taken them to the playoffs every year, including a Super Bowl appearance! I, for one, thought that the move to fire John Fox was bat shit crazy, but I was wrong.

 

John Elway brought in his old pal from back in the day, Gary Kubiak. This was another move that left me scratching my head. I never really thought of Gary Kubiak as a bad coach, but I certainly didn’t see him as a Super Bowl winning head coach. He had a 61-64 regular season record and 2-2 playoff record in his previous NFL stint with the Texans, and never seemed to me to be someone who was able to get the most out of the talent on his team. I was wrong about that, my bad. With the help of new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips they turned this Denver Broncos team into a defensive powerhouse that took the pressure off of the offense and controlled games all season long.

 

A Change in Offensive Philosophy

 By focusing on the run game, the Broncos minimized mistakes and let the defense take control.

 

It became clear in 2014 that the world would never get the Peyton Manning that they knew and loved back. The Peyton we were left with was a shadow of his former self. Years of injuries and normal wear and tear had left his arm strength severely inhibited, and that was not only obvious to opposing defenses but also to the untrained eyes of fans all over the world. In 2015 we watched Peyton Manning fall apart before us. He was still dealing with injuries as always but it was becoming obvious that he couldn’t play through it like a younger version of himself could. It was his worst statistical season since his rookie year and it seemed as though he was still trying to do too much with the limited physical abilities that years in the league had left him with.

 

In the third quarter of the Broncos week 10 loss the Chiefs, Manning was replaced by Brock Osweiler. He didn’t see the field again until he replaced Osweiler in the third quarter of the Broncos week 17 matchup. Peyton came in and led the team to a 27-20 victory against the Chargers, helping secure the top seed in the AFC playoffs. But this was not the same Peyton Manning. He had bought into the system and was no longer trying to do too much. By allowing the run game to become the focal point of the offense, Manning minimized the mistakes that had plagued him earlier in the season. As a result the defense became the standard bearer of the Broncos Super Bowl run and everything came together perfectly.

 

The Von Miller Effect

 The MVP.

 

Every champion needs an x-factor and for the AFC Championship and Super Bowl the Broncos had Von Miller. Through those two games, he destroyed the opposition and was unblockable. Against New England and Carolina he racked up 11 tackles, 5 sacks, 2 pass defenses, an interception and 2 forced fumbles. The fumble he forced against Cam Newton in the Super Bowl was recovered for a touchdown and helped the Broncos grab momentum early on. He was the most versatile player on the field; he rushed the passer, played the run and covered tight ends and receivers in the pass game. There was no other player as deserving of winning the Super Bowl MVP Award and now the Broncos better pay him his due this offseason.

 

 

It only took the Broncos two years to return to the Super Bowl but when they did they were a totally different team. John Elway had a vision for the team he wanted to build and deserves a lot of credit, along with the player and coaches, for executing that vision and creating a champion.

 

 


Roger Pretzel’s Review ‘N Brew: Divisional Playoffs

Written by :
Published on : January 21, 2016

 

 

In this little corner Roger Pretzel will review his favorite play of the week along with a thoughtful review of what beverage he was imbibing at the time.

 

 

 

Divisional Playoffs: Thomas Davis Shows Good Hands on Onside Kick to Kill Seahawks Miracle Comeback

 

VIDEO: HERE

 

In this Divisional weekend, we saw the Patriots get lucky breaks even when they didn’t need ‘em, Aaron Rodgers completed two ludicrous Hail Mary passes back-to-back, and grandpa Peyton overcome a handful of sacks to take Denver to the Conference Championships. Not least of all, in the Carolina/Seattle matchup, we saw the ‘Hawks do what they do, in attempting to crawl out of a 31 point hole and make an improbable comeback, like they did last year against Green Bay.

 

Not if Thomas Davis has anything to say about it.

 

I think Detroit fans might feel this, since earlier in the season Calvin Johnson, arguably the most “hands” guy one would want on that “hands” team flubbed one against the Packers. It don’t matter if the guy is a linebacker in his thirties or a star wide receiver: you gotta put the game away.

 

Davis takes a massive hit as he goes up for the catch, so it’s not a gimme by any means. Fullback Derrick Coleman, ploughs into Davis’s legs sending him crashing headfirst to the field. Davis hangs on for the showstopper.

 

 

Divisional Playoffs: Booze That Comes in Bottles Shaped Like Weapons

 

Nothing goes together better than alcohol and weapons. Whether it’s taking potshots at cans off your front porch while sippin’ some Lynchburg Lemonade, emptying your Beretta into the air at your cousin’s christening while chugging Night Train, or wowing party guests with your spiked punch-enhanced knife throwing skills, you know the guns and blades are gonna come out at some point in the night.

 

It’s only natural that spirits providers would get hip to this match made in heaven, and now we’re blessed with an embarrassment of riches in the form of booze holding vessels that looks like our beloved heaters, streetsweepers, and toad-stickers.

 

Tequila That Looks Like an AK-47

lg_1825

 

The good folks at Institucional Tequila chose to bottle their 100% agave blanco tequila in a glass bottle shaped like an AK-47. Online providers claim that the product is both “fruity and smooth,” though Institucional prefers to describe the spirit as “dangerously smooth.” Get it? You are going to get lots of attention if you bring this to a Super Bowl party, your grandma’s funeral reception, or a government building.

 

Vodka That Looks Like an AK-47

Ak-47

 

It would be pretty lousy if a Mexican company were the only distiller to use the shape of the famed Kalashnikov. You can’t leave the Russians out. But apparently Moscow’s attitude is “nyet way, Jose.” Kalashnikov vodka is not only named for the famed creator of the world’s most iconic machine gun, but it also has a far superiorly modeled bottle to it’s Mexican counterpart, and comes in a faux-military style weapons crate.

 

Good luck getting your hands on this puppy though, it was a one-off production with a limit of 13,000 bottles produced.

 

Rum In The Shape of a “Buccaneer Pistol”

 

Another export from our Mexican friends, this añejo rum has been aged a respectable ten years and boasts “lots of vanilla and sweetness.” The bottle itself is hand made, and certainly looks like something a pirate would carry around, but holding only 20cl of hooch, it’s questionable whether or not Blackbeard & Co would be trucking around with such a paltry stash.

 

Still, it would make a great gift for that elementary school teacher, elevator operator, or proctologist in your life.

 

Tequila in the Shape of a Pistol

UnFTN

 

Well, there’s definitely a theme here… This tequila is described thusly: “This limited edition tequila is made with quality, prestige and tradition to honor the Villanueva Barragan family, owners of Licores Veracruz. This pistol symbolizes the family’s courage, respect and pride. Hijos de Villa tequila represents the Mexican family in the revolutionary era.”

 

It probably would’ve been better had the family not gone out of it’s way to explain what the pistol means to them as now I’m picturing an estate full of the Mexican version of the Sorpanos, but what’re ya gonna do? This one’s also only 20cl, so you’re mostly paying for a glass bottle shaped like a gun with a little bit of yellow tequila in it, which is generally considered pretty good (think Cazadores).

 

Brandy in the Shape of a Sword

193

 

And straight out of left field comes a glass sword full of Ukrainian brandy thanks to the Albo Group of Companies. I couldn’t say it any better than the company representatives:

 

“A new brand from the Albo group is now available as a gift. Our cognac is considered to have good form and flavor. The new Cognacs of Ukraine come in a souvenir bottle and has been rated as a five-star cognac in a several tasting competitions… The shapes of the bottles are very pleasing themselves, however; inside is where the real pleasure and surprise are contained. Even experts are pleasantly surprised at the quality of the cognac. The taste is classical balanced and the flavor harmonious combined the aroma of fruit. The long and silky final note gives an elegant aftertaste. The noble amber color of the cognac in a vessel of sculptural form will improve any home interior or office.”

 

That’s all for this week, but you can bet I’ll be seeing you after the Conference Championships, swinging my brandy sword, and making obscene shooting sounds with my tequila pistol.

 

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks: Week 17

Written by :
Published on : January 2, 2016

 

 

Well folks, it’s been an incredible year making picks for the all the SBS staff. We’re a bunch of smart motherfuckers. Though there was a heated competition and I am currently a distant second, I will make my boldest prediction yet: I will become the ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks Champion. In fact, here is an excerpt of my acceptance speech:

 

 

But the real point here is more exposé than anything. What the hell got into SBS Editor and possible PED user Bruno? Here we are in a two-man race between myself and Ryan, comfortable on our laurels, when all of a sudden this dude Bruno gets the Shining and mounts a ridiculous comeback. In the last five weeks he’s been among the top two in picks, including blowing us all (out of the water) this past week. Sick of it. Someone needs to dig up the dirt.

 

Moving on, the trickiest game on the slate this week for me to pick was the Cardinals – Seahawks matchup, mainly because they’re both damn good.  The game is in Arizona, but there’s very little at stake for the Cards, already having won the NFC west, while Seattle and Russell Wilson were straight up Megachurching everyone in their path before that unfortunate Rams loss (yes, when it applies to Russell Wilson on the football field, I believe “Megachurch” can be used as a verb). That loss makes this game critical for the Seabirds, not so much for the Sandbirds, so I went with Seattle.

 

That about does it for the ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks for this year.  Thanks so much to the readers, we sincerely hope that you made money gambling illegally, using our tried-and-true methods of nonsense.  Here’s to a great end of the NFL season, playoffs, Super Bowl, and hopefully a Roger Goodell Satan-worshipping scandal in the off-season.

 

My New Year’s resolution for 2016:

 

 

Week 17

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

Week 11

Week 12

Week 13

Week 14

Week 15

Week 16

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks: Week 15

Written by :
Published on : December 17, 2015

 

Here we sit on the precipice of week 15. The ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks are almost done for the season and what a fun ride it has been. At least for Ryan and Antoine, who are the only ones who have had a legit shot at the title since the beginning of the year. With 3 weeks of picks left, it’s not likely that Ryan is going to be unseated from the top spot. I suppose he could have a couple of bad weeks and I could miraculously catch up, but this guy just seems to know how to pick winners. He’s a madman who can’t be stopped, and he should probably start gambling on sports.

 

But we can talk about Ryan’s future gambling addiction some other time, right now let’s look at this exciting slate of games. Actually the only game that really looks exciting to me is Panthers at Giants. Mostly because these last fews Panthers games are going to be really suspenseful as they try to go undefeated, but also because it seems like the Giants are finally starting to put it together. Some of that bad luck has turned into late season good luck with that win over the Dolphins last week and they sit in a 3-way tie for the top spot in the abysmal NFC East.

 

There’s also a bunch of garbage matchups, either between good teams who will crush their bad opponents ( Titans @ Patriots, Browns @ Seahawks), or between two bad teams ( Dolphins @ Chargers, Lions @ Saints.) Either way, those will all be hard games to watch, but we’ll watch ’em anyways, because it’s football. And we love football!

 

On to the picks…..

Week 15

 

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

Week 11

Week 12

Week 13

Week 14

 

 


Champ and Chump: Week 14

Written by :
Published on : December 16, 2015

 

 

A little more variety this week as we give some love to the frozen pond and hit the hardwood in our Champ and Chump sections. As always, the gridiron takes center stage with quarterbacks in the leading role. And there were a couple very memorable performances, while another gets awful reviews for his play. So here we go, see which players took a bow as the fans begged for an encore performance and who saw the curtains crash down on them. To the picks!

 

Champ: Russell Wilson

 Can Russell lead the Seahawks back to the Super Bowl?

 

Hard to find a hotter quarterback on the planet right now than Seattle’s Russell Wilson. A few weeks ago the Seahawks looked like a team that might miss out on the playoffs after consecutive Super Bowl appearances, especially when running back Marshawn Lynch went down with an injury. Since then, Wilson has led the Seahawks to four straight wins and has Seattle looking at a Wild Card spot. On Sunday, the Seahawks manhandled the Ravens 35-6 with Wilson finishing 23-32 and 292 yards with 5 touchdowns. During the four game win streak, Wilson has 17 touchdowns (1 rushing) and 0 interceptions. With Lynch expected back for the playoffs, Seattle may be hitting their stride, and for everyone else in the NFC that could be very bad news.

 

Honorable Mention:

Khalil Mack- The Oakland Raider finished with 5 sacks, as he constantly pressured and hit Denver’s Brock Osweiler, leading the Raiders to a 15-12 victory.

Eli Manning- Finished 27-31 and 337 yards with 4 touchdowns in a win on Monday Night in Miami. A nearly perfect evening for Eli keeping the Giants in the playoff hunt.

Patrick Kane- With an assist on Sunday night, Kane extended his points streak to 26 games as the Blackhawks blanked the Canucks 4-0. Kane leads the league with 46 points.

Golden State Warriors- Speaking of streaks, an incredible run was put to an end this past weekend as the Warriors took their first loss of the season after starting the year 24-0. Give the Bucks credit for being the first to take down the defending champs, but my guess is Golden State will get another streak going here real soon, and I predict they will win 70+ games.

 

 

Chump: Rajon Rondo

 Rondo wins the award for biggest chump.

 

Rajon Rondo is not known as one of the “good guys” by any stretch in the NBA, and he may have made matters even worse this past weekend. Disgusted with a call, Rondo lashed out on an official before being ejected, going as far as to call him a slur that rhymes with “maggot.” Days later, that official has come out as a gay man. Whether Rondo knew he was gay or not isn’t necessarily the issue, though I suppose Rondo looks even worse if he did. Just last year on a Dallas squad that made the playoffs, we saw Rondo absolutely give up on his team and wound up being benched by coach Rick Carlisle, who Rondo constantly argued with on and off the court. Once thought to be potentially the best point guard in the NBA, Rondo has continued to put up good numbers for the Kings all the while looking like an absolute joker.

 

Dishonorable Mention:

Robbie Gould- For the second consecutive week, Gould lined up with a chance to give Chicago the win or in this case a tie as time expired, and in both cases he missed it. The Bears easily could have won both these games making them 7-6 and just a game out of the playoffs with three winnable games left. However, instead they’re 5-8 with the chips stacked high against them.

Andy Dalton- The “Red Rocket” may have just cost the Bengals their season on Sunday. While blaming a guy for breaking his thumb while trying to make a tackle may seem a bit unfair, you have to consider the circumstance. In the redzone, Dalton threw an interception on an atrocious shovel pass attempt. I had to watch this replay a few times to even see what happened because it honestly looked like he just threw it to the defensive lineman and then dove into his knees. Dalton may be ready for the postseason where his resume absolutely needs a playoff win, perhaps more than any other quarterback.

Miami Dolphins- This one is personal. I just have to vent real quick. In the first round of my fantasy football playoffs I am sitting pretty at halftime with Lamar Miler and Josh Brown (NY Giants’ kicker) going against Odell Beckham Jr, who for the most part was held in check. Miller went off in the first half and Miami is leading so I think I’ll be ok. Fast forward to the second half and OBJ goes off for two scores (one being an 85-yarder) and Miller gets just 4 second half touches. Just 4! Thanks Miami, I hope you lose the rest of your games.

 

 


Who will win this year’s NFL MVP Award?

Written by :
Published on : December 15, 2015

 

 

With the 2015-16 NFL Regular Season wrapping up, we finally have a good idea of who all these teams and players actually are. It’s been a crazy year that has been full of surprises, jaw-dropping plays and sadly, some even more jaw-dropping mistakes from players and refs alike. As the playoff picture begins to come into focus, let’s take a look at which players have been absolutely indispensable to their teams and have a leg up on everyone else in the race for this year’s NFL MVP Award.

 

Tom Brady

 Brady is used to being in this conversation.

 

Nothing new here. The quarterback from New England has been consistently present in this conversation for the last decade or so, and this year seems to be no different. While his rival of old, Peyton Manning, has fallen apart before our eyes, Tom Brady has put together one of his more impressive seasons yet. Through 13 games he has amassed 4,138 passing yards, 33 touchdowns and only 6 interceptions, while completing 64.2% of his passes. The dude is unstoppable and seems to be showing no signs of slowing down. Sure, he has the best tight end in the game catching balls for him and keeping defenses occupied, but without Tom Brady, the Patriots go nowhere. There is no player more valuable to that team.

 

Cam Newton

 “What’s that you say? Playoffs? Yes please!”

 

Here’s a new face in the NFL MVP race. It’s not really all that surprising that the quarterback of a 13-0 team is on this list, but I feel like most people give the defense and running game the most credit for the Panthers’ success. While those two things are very big reasons for the Panthers continued greatness this year, Cam Newton has really stepped his game up over the last month or so, and catapulted himself into the MVP debate. He is coming off of a 38-0 dismantling of the division-rival, Atlanta Falcons in which he completed 71.4% of his passes, and he also has two games over the last month where he threw for 5 touchdowns. The Panthers would still be good without him, but there’s no way they would still be undefeated.

 

Russell Wilson

 16 touchdowns and 0 interceptions over the last 4 games. That’s nothing to sneeze at.

 

Like Newton, Russell Wilson, and the Seahawks as a whole, have really turned things up in the last month. With the exception of a 39-30 win over the Steelers three weeks ago, the team has been dominating the opposition and that’s very much the result of Wilson’s excellent play. He has completed a ridiculous 75.6% of his passes over the last 4 games for 1,171 yards, 16 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. Along with some help from the defense, Wilson has put the Seahawks firmly on the path to the playoffs and they now sit in the 1st wildcard spot. If he can keep playing like this, there’s no reason that the Seahawks can’t go to their 3rd Super Bowl in a row.

 

Who wins?

This is a really tough question. It’s hard to look past Wilson’s ridiculous numbers recently, and Tom Brady is the best qb in the game, but I think I have to give it to Cam Newton. This could change over the final three weeks of the season, but if the Panthers end up going 16-0, which is looking very likely right now, then I think Cam is a lock. Even if they drop 1 or 2 games before the playoffs, I still think it’s Cam’s award to lose.

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks: Week 12

Written by :
Published on : November 25, 2015

 

Thursday is Thanksgiving, the holiday that football owns the same way that Bill Murray owns Groundhog Day. It’s inescapable. If you’re not watching it on TV or playing it in the front yard, then you’re probably hiding in the kitchen filling up on hors d’oeuvres and making small talk with your boring cousin. Good luck with that. I’ll see you at halftime.

 

Meanwhile, these ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks remains a tight race. Ryan and Antoine still lead the pack. I find myself squarely in the middle —  ten points away from both highest and lowest record. Oh, and Alex and Mike both have the same stats (95-65). Not bad? Not good enough. All it takes it one good/bad week to change everything.

 

I’m not much for trash talk, so I’m going the opposite route this week — passive aggressive kindness. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, SBS staffers, and good luck with this week’s picks. Don’t choke.

 

Week 12

 

 

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

Week 11

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks: Week 11

Written by :
Published on : November 19, 2015

 

Hello out there everyone,

It’s been since week 1 that I’ve written the intro to these ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks, and what a rollercoaster of a ride it has been. I spent the first few weeks in the basement of the standings but since then, I’ve really turned things around. I’ve had a 1st or 2nd place record for the past 4 weeks and I’m clawing my way back to relevance. Sure, I’m still 11 correct picks behind Antoine and Ryan but if they have just a couple more stinkers like last week then I’ll be right in the thick of it. I think I can, I think I can…

 

There are a few interesting trends in the way the SBS Staff picked this week’s slate of games. For instance, the Jaguars are the consensus winner over the Titans, as if the Jags are some sort of standard of excellence nowadays (or maybe the Titans are just THAT bad). Also, the Lions seems to have restored faith amongst quite a few of us here and as a lifelong Lions fan, that is the perfect time for them to let everyone down. Besides that, everyone is picking the Patriots and Panthers to win their respective games and remain the last two undefeated teams. How great would it be for both of them to lose? Anyways let’s get to the picks.

 

Week 11

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

 

 

 

 

 


ScoreBoredSports NFL Staff Picks: Week 8

Written by :
Published on : October 28, 2015

 

I may be the only football illiterate person on the staff. My wisdom for the weekly NFL Staff Picks is based on which place I’d rather live in, and random tidbits I pick up by listening to announcers.

 

Recently, I heard football spectators commenting on the Seahawks. They argued that they are not offensively ready to go on a winning streak following the royal beating they gave to the 49ers last week. My pick for the Seahawks was justified by Pete Carroll’s trajectory in USC football’s glory years. Trojans stick by each other, which is why I was rooting for him, not the team.

 

Anyway, I was struck by a comment in an email from Alex; “football is stupid.” While making my choices for the week 8 picks, certain thoughts came to mind: I barely watch NFL games, but my picks are doing alright; average at worst and better than I expected. Considering my success in making picks for the first time ever, I’ll wait to till the end of the season to confirm or deny if football is stupid.

 

 

Week 8

 

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

 

 


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