Over-Dose-Reaction; Week 4

PANIC or SETTLE IN Week — Week 4… the first of four quarterly bench marks of the NFL’s sixteen week season. The week where identities are almost fully established. There is still room for anything to happen but it’s definitely the week where you realize where your team stands. The fear of reality comes into play following week four since most teams now have seen at least one divisional rival and enough to know where there team stands. It’s the week that has some teams settling in and realizing they have something good in front of them and has other teams reaching for that bright-red panic button!

–THURSDAY–

Cincinnati Bengals 22, Miami Dolphins 7

What happened to the good looking Dolphins orange? Thursday Night’s color-rush uniforms once again featured horrifying jerseys as Miami sported all-orange jerseys that looked like they had been ran through the wash with bleach, giving a peachy hint to it. The extra sweet uniforms were replicated in the Dolphins tackling ability as exploited by A.J. Green’s ten catches for 166 yards. The Dolphins defense looked about as bad as Ryan Tannehill’s off-season contract extension is starting to look. The Dolphins need to pound that PANIC button after their week four loss. The Bengals are now 2-2 but with their losses coming to Pittsburgh and Denver, are feeling like they have solid ground in the AFC with their shellacking of the Dolphins on the road in a shortened week.

–SUNDAY–

Jacksonville Jaguars 30, Indianapolis Colts 27 [In London]

Apologies to England. Hard to say from America whether our neighbors across the pond really appreciate these publicity-stunt football games or if the NFL is just trying to compensate Americans that live overseas and trying to cure their melon-shaped football cravings. Either way, there was nothing of good coming from the 8:30 A.M. Central Standard Time kickoff between the AFC South Rivals. It was close but both of these teams still need to be striking the PANIC button. The Colts still have issues on the O-Line and now are showing signs of poor mental-strength defensively as dumb penalties plagued the Colts throughout the game. To the Jags credit they took advantage of the untimely Indy mistakes to give themselves enough of a lead to hold off another late surge by Luck and Co. who are starting to gain another bad reputation trait of being slow-starters. The Jags need to hit the PANIC button for a different reason. The AFC South is ug-lay! If they ever wanted a year of mediocre Jacksonville football to reach the playoffs they need to press-on hard in 2016 and make something out of this season!

Buffalo Bills 16, New England Patriots 0

So the Ryan brothers aren’t totally incompetent. Thankfully for Buffalo, they had a week of tape to prepare for Jacoby Brissett who finally started looking like a third-stringer in the Patriots goose-egg at home against their AFC East foes. It was the first time Bill Belichick had been shutout in New England. (2) Meanwhile, The Ryan’s found footing after being hung by the media following week three but who knows how long it will provide them with air supply. The Patriots can now SETTLE IN physically thanks to their upcoming week 5 bye week and from a roster stand-point as Tom Brady looks to reclaim his throne in Foxborough behind center. The Bills will once again ROUTINELY hit the PANIC button, as will be their full-season reaction thanks to the hole they just reached out of at 2-2.

Chicago Bears 17, Detroit Lions 14

The NFC North Toilet bowl part one. Both these teams have a recent history of mediocrity and inability to finish out games. While one, Chicago, is learning they need not be so reliant on Jay Cutler thanks to Brian Hoyer’s performances in relief. The other, Detroit, is learning they can not just expect Matt Stafford to handle the burden of a lackluster roster week after week. The Bears are hitting the short and long term PANIC button due to their predicament at quarterback and need to figure out where they stand with Cutler before he comes back. Detroit’s going to have to enter SETTLE IN mode. Falling to 1-3 with their line win coming to the Colts in week one they need to realize who’s worth keeping or cutting for post-2016.

Washington Redskins 31, Cleveland Browns 20

Washington benefited Sunday from a weak opponent in the Browns who have too many overall problems to be anything but a loser in 2016. However, the Redskins should also ease the seat back and realize their playoff meal ticket. A.k.a. the NFC East. Enjoy the easy wins like Cleveland when you can, but Washington’s real weekends will consist their most familiar foes.

Seattle Seahawks 27,  New York Jets 17

New York; SETTLE IN for a losing season. Here’s why. You didn’t PANIC and buy-in on Ryan Fitzpatrick this off season. That seems to be a good thing as of right now. Fitz is giving Jets fans just that between his nine interceptions to one touchdown pass in the past two games. (2) The Patriots are going to command the AFC East again, just accept the rebuild 6-10/7-9 season and get the cement wet. Seattle; SETTLE IN, once again they slow played the start of the year but the Seahawks will get their offensive wings flapping as the leaves turn colors. Russell Wilson played insanely well (23-32 with 309 yards and three TDs, through injuries). (4) Don’t look back on the first quarter with heavy eyes Seattle just actually prep for be Rams this time around.

Oakland Raiders 28, Baltimore Ravens 27

Both teams SETTLE IN; this should have been the package sent to London as this actually looked like two playoff teams. Granted, due to Denver and Pittsburgh they maybe relegated to Wild Card slots, both are appearing to be teams with something of merit through the first quarter.

Atlanta Falcons 48, Carolina Panthers 33

Carolina- PANIC! PANIC! PANIC! The secondary without Josh Norman looks as unrecognized to the 2015 Panthers as the Presidential campaign’s running mates. (5) Hard to say if they will have a chance to defend their NFC title from a year ago given they just lost an in division game to an Atlanta team that finally has the football world double-taking the Georgia product. The Falcons just need to SETTLE IN and focus on redemption of their week one loss to the Bucs and they’ll be able to enjoy their early leg up on the Saints and Panthers in the NFC South.

Houston Texans 27, Tennessee Titans 20

And so begins the ugly war for the AFC DIRTY SOUTH!  ALL AFC SOUTH TEAMS SHOULD BE PANICKING! The Texans no-longer have their eye-catcher with J.J. Watt’s season ending back injury and the Titans can’t seem to get a big enough advantage to propel their run-game properly. (7) Meanwhile the Jags are the Jags and the Colts are a hot mess week in and week out. Since there is no consistency in the AFC South all teams should be on red-alert if an of them really want a shot at the playoffs. Luck fully for the foursome of mediocre squads, and unfortunately for the remaining AFC soon-to-be snubs, one of these teams will be enabled a playoff spot as a matter of South champion default. The question is who will execute the right amount of PANIC to SETTLE IN to that spot?

Dallas Cowboys 24, San Francisco 49ers 17

Okay San Francisco, jokes over. You can now SETTLE IN to the bad year you were expecting. However, PANIC because now comes the story line of when does Colin Kaepernick actually get a chance to play again? (8) Holy Willy Beamen! Dallas now has a real dilemma. Who knows when or if Tony Romo comes back this season, but if/when he does there is now a question of who should start with legitimacy being cemented in Prescott’s ability to lead the Dallas offense back against the 49ers in week four (trailed by 14 in the second quarter). Like the 49ers, Cowboys fan’s should also be PANICKING about their QB controversy. Unlike the 49ers, the Cowboys may have two legit QBs and SF has two letdowns of QBs.

Los Angeles Rams 17, Arizona Cardinals 13

Both of these teams need to PANIC. Arizona is now 1-3 and gave up a chance to really neutralize the state of the NFC West Sunday during their contest with the Rams. The loss from Zona however pushed the Rams into a 2-1 start out in the division, making them the likely favorite to claim the divisional auto-playoff bid. (9) Not too mention, the Cardinals offense. Yes, the Rams are one of the league’s perceived better defensive teams. But to only put up thirteen points at home is puzzling and worrisome. Los Angeles also needs to PANIC by what appears in their rear-view mirror. That opening week loss to San Fran may comeback to haunt them if they don’t continue to push through the NFC West and claim that top spot in the division, because as recent history has shown the Rams are underdog-dominant but when it’s time to step up they lose their balance.

New Orleans Saints 35, San Diego Chargers 34

San Diego, New Orleans both SETTLE IN; neither have nothing but old names under center. Phillip Rivers and Drew Brees are both great… The team’s they play for are not. No need to PANIC, both of these teams will be battling for the number one pick of next may’s draft.

Denver Broncos 27, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7

PANIC TAMPA BAY, that global warming thing… may be real. (10) As far as our NFL franchise goes, nah you’re good. You have time to let Winston continue to progress himself as an NFL diamond, right now he’s half way through the buffing process as a coal. Get some more players around him, the Bucs are about a year away. Denver – SETTLE IN. WE GET IT YOUR FRANCHISE IS PROPERLY RAN!

Pittsburgh Steelers 43, Kansas City Chiefs 14

The Steelers played like pros Sunday Night, following a bad loss they came back and opened a can of whoop-ass when in question. Just like pros do. However, they still need to PANIC. Here’s why; in the long term of things playing in the Steel city come January will be key, especially if they find themselves against Tommy Brady. Due to the Pats 3-1 start without Brady they are just as likely to claim HFA in the AFC playoffs. If Pittsburgh settles they may lose their chance at a home stadium come playoff time. Let’s face it, no one wants to go to Foxborough in the winter (football player or not). KC, don’t feel bad, the Steelers were sort of destined to win this game. Unfortunately the Chiefs also need to worry and PANIC! Because the Raiders may be very much for real, and the Oakland-Kansas City rivalry ma imply a playoff spot this season since it doesn’t seem the Broncs are regressing at all in 2016.

–MONDAY–

Minnesota Vikings 24, New York Giants 10

SETTLE IN Minnesota. Your team is for real! The D is nasty (NFL first ranked in Give/Take) and Sam Bradford is finally playing like a first round draft quarterback. (6) Just take care of the team’s remaining roster health and carry on! New York Giants; PANIC! Not only have they fallen to 2-2 with consecutive losses but they are looking like they are losing their own sideline as well. Really makes you wonder if letting the Tom Coughlin regime end before his time was really the right move, because right now they look about as opposite the Coughlin standard teams as possible with the antics of their stars like Odell Beckham Jr.

Sources:

  1. http://www.foxsports.com/nfl/story/a-j-green-has-big-game-as-bengals-dominate-dolphins-22-7-093016?cmpid=feed:-sports-WIS-SportsData-NFL
  2. https://www.google.com/amp/www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/sunday-was-the-first-time-the-patriots-have-been-shut-out-in-a-very-long-time/amp/?client=safari
  3. http://www.nfl.com/player/ryanfitzpatrick/2506581/careerstats
  4. http://www.nfl.com/player/russellwilson/2532975/gamelogs
  5. https://www.google.com/amp/www.nbcnews.com/storyline/data-points/amp/poll-vice-presidential-candidates-mike-pence-tim-kaine-largely-unknown-n658731?client=safari
  6. http://www.espn.com/nfl/statistics/team/_/stat/givetake/position/defense
  7. http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2666751-jj-watt-injury-update-star-undergoes-season-ending-back-surgery
  8. http://thebiglead.com/2016/10/04/the-nfl-should-make-chip-kelly-start-colin-kaepernick-thursday-night/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=ColinKaepernick
  9. http://www.nfl.com/teams/schedule?team=LA
  10. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/lightning-may-increase-with-global-warming/
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Over-Dose-Reaction; Week 3

09-28-16

PIVOT WEEK — Week three, the reaction overdoses still are being made about the 32 NFL franchises. And have a week left before they traditionally start taking merit. But some bold prediction can start to be foreseen. For example, only about twelve percent of teams that start 0-2 make the playoffs and only five in NFL history have after going 0-3. (2) There is some momentum being built in the team’s season long reputations, creating the need to discuss what point are the teams looking at through consensus take-always or beliefs. Each game will be explained and their collective pivot point will be given that I’ve accosciated with them. With the pivot lies the over-reaction.

THURSDAY

New England Patriots 27, Houston Texans 0

Just looking at the box score it would be easy to say that the Houston defense got embarrassed by a third string quarterback in Jacoby Brissett. But that’s why paper needs human influence; a.k.a. words. The Texans d wasn’t so much up against the Patriots overwhelming offense in the week three opener as much as they were up against their own sidelines lack luster offense. Brissett and the Patriots were dealt short fields to work with that benefits a pound-ground team like the Pats. By the fourth quarter the all-white color rush jerseys that the Texans defense were sporting looked more like an eleven part shredded surrender flag after having to try and prevent the aftermath’s of Brock Osweiler’s consistent three-and-out drives all night and two fumbles on kickoff returns. Bellichick and Brissett looked dynamic but something needs to be said that the Texans defense at least kept Houston in the game for three quarters which should at least keep a sight of optimism for the Houston-loyalist. The pivot point from here is a storyline for both of the TNF game’s contestants. For the Patriots the storyline pivot is; “How much do the Patriots really need Brady before he comes back in week five?” For the Texans the turn will be; “Why did we believe so much in what we saw of Osweiler at Denver?” Osweiler threw for 196 yards, going 24/41 passing with an interception.

SUNDAY

Buffalo Bills 33, Arizona Cardinals 18

Pivots. Buffalo; “Don’t us the Rex Ryan chair fire extinguisher yet, but don’t throw away the box of matches either. KEEP THAT SEAT HOT!” Rexy may not have pulled his seat from the burner but he reduced heat to medium following the early Sunday win. Arizona; “Are we still all that good?” Arizona has lost twice now, to the Pats and Bills. Their only win came in a 40-7 blowout… of Tampa Bay. The pivot reflects off the schedule as the Cardinals once again have a losing record, Sunday’s damning loss to a reeling Buffalo might cause confidence issues.

Minnesota Vikings 22, Carolina Panthers 10

The Vikings 2016 theme stayed true for another week; AP and D. Unfortunately, the AP factor of their theme is no more due to a week two injury. So, the D stepped up in his absence, yielding Cam Newton and the Panthers to just ten points in a statement road win! The Vikes defense held three shutout quarters allowing even the Sam Bradford led offense enough time to comeback with 20 points to help construct the twelve point win. The Pivots. Minnesota; “How long can our defense hold water without a truly efficient offensive unit?” Carolina; “Home doesn’t feel like home when the tenants are unrest. Do the added distractions of Charlotte continue to effect us in our own stadium and is our struggle enough to turn a tide of peace in Charlotte?” (6)

Denver Broncos 29, Cincinnati Bengals 17

To the Bengals credit, though it’s been three weeks into the season the 2016 season they have had three very tough weeks to deal with, resulting in  their 1-2 record. They have faced a fired up Jets team in week one to start the season that they squeaked by. Had a dogfight with AFC North rival Pittsburgh in week two and had to recharge and play host to another relentless defense in the Broncos. The Pivots from this AFC showdown resides to shake em’ off themes. Denver; “Got em’! Let’s just stay below radar and keep winning games.” Cincy; “We’re fine, we just need to get to the lighter side of our schedule… oh hey look, Miami! “

Green Bay Packers 34, Detroit Lions 27

Aaron Rodgers should just change his name to Frankie for how often he needs to tell cheese heads to R-E-L-A-X! (7) Rodgers only threw for 204 yards in the Green Bay 34-27 but they included four touchdown passes that proved essential in the Pack’s win over the NFC North foes. The pivots for these two teams require a step back and a broader perspective. Green Bay; “Stop crying wolf, the sheep’s fence lot more sturdy than we think.” Detroit; “The problem’s not Matt Stafford (385 yards and 3 touchdowns). So… what is the problem (Defense)?”

Baltimore Ravens 19, Jacksonville Jaguars 17

Almost as expected as ever in this match-up of two teams that just don’t consistently make regular season highlights. The Ravens just got by to claim another win, while Jacksonville just got beat and claimed another loss. The Ravens always seem to find ways to boringly win, while the Jags just keep finding ways to NOT win. The Pivots will be how the two teams move forward this season. Baltimore; “As long as we’re lamely winning under the radar, we’re good.” Jacksonville; “Let’s just be the Jags and give the people what they expect… Bottom dwellers.”

Miami Dolphins 30, Cleveland Browns 24

From an isolated entertainment stand-point two evenly matched teams is a great thing! So, if you were in South Florida for the game between Miami and the Browns you at least we’re entertained, but they were two evenly matched BAD NFL teams. Which was settled in a Dolphins win due to Jarvis Landry going off at receiver and capped with an OT touchdown run by Jay Ajayi sealing it. However in the broader perspective the two teams shared the same pivot spot and went opposite ways. Miami; “Hey, at least we aren’t as bad as the Browns.” Cleveland; “Yeah… We’re as bad as the Browns.”

Washington Redskins 29, New York Giants 27

Why is it that the NFC East can never give us a straight forward season. Just when you think the Redskins are going to be dead to the world they step up on defense and force late turnovers of Eli Manning, denying his 36th career game winning drive, and grabbing a divisional win to pivot back skyward. The Giants are walking a little less tall after dropping to 1-2 and will have identity issues looming in their rear-view from here. Washington; “Trust in Norman, not in Cousins.” New York Giants; “I guess those narrow wins say more about are overall success than we thought.

Oakland Raiders 17, Tennessee Titans 10

When you make QBs look average, you’ve had a good day in the NFL. And the Raiders defense needed that Sunday to change the gathered narrative of the Oakland score preservers. Oakland held Marcus Mariota to 215 yards passing and forced two interceptions, finally coming through on their preseason hype. The Titans will start questioning if they took the right path behind a smash mouth approach following Sunday’s one touchdown day. Tennessee:  Isn’t getting a lead essential to grinding down clock behind a run game? Maybe we should have thought of that.” Oakland; “There’s the D. Now we can get to work.”

Seattle Seahawks 37, San Francisco 49ers 18

With the score at 31-3 you have to wonder why Russell Wilson was even playing, but he was and he was injured as Murphy’s Law worked against Washington’s Hawks. San Francisco’s gold is finally starting to look fake and bend after their season opening win as they fall to the expected below .500. Seattle; “Won a battle, jeopardized the war.” San Francisco; “Ha, yeah. We were just playing. Let’s just hope the baseball Giants make the post-season and keep people’s attention off of us.”

Indianapolis Colts 26, San Diego Chargers 22

If you needed any more proof that the Colts are a bad team, research their week three contest with the Chargers. Sure, the Colts won but it took a cough up by the Charger’s Hunter Henry to ultimately enable the Indy win with a San Diego final drive fumble. The Colts have more holes than a Whack-A-Mole board in their roster caused by injury. They need a lot of help they won’t get during the season, making it impossible to think positive about this year’s chances. San Diego: “Phil, keep feeding your octo-foundation of kids, sorry that’s all we can do to compensate you.” (3) Indianapolis; “Grigson (GM) or Pagano (HC)… Both… Again?… Neither? Let’s just take what we can get out of this season. Will ACTUALLY settle this in winter this year.”

Kansas City Chiefs 24, New York Jets 3

*As a GM to a QB* 1 Interception… Shame on you. Interception 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6… Shame on me’s! How bad must the Jets QB situation be if they don’t even have the back-up power to pull Ryan Fitzpatrick following his hexo-pic performance Sunday? As for the Chiefs there is still cause for concern in their three touchdown win over the weekend. To have six interceptions on defense and to only win by a three score margin? The Chiefs need more points from the offensive side if they want people to stop thinking of them as a non-threat for the AFC crown. The pivots taken by both of these teams are hinging on the offense after this dozer of a game Sunday that invoked as many zzzzzz’s from fans as INTs from the KC D. New York; “One year contract for Fitzy? Alright, livable.” Kansas City; “The D was so good it even covered up our mediocre O this week.”

Los Angeles Rams 37, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 32

Jeff Fisher is above 50-50 after week three of the 2016 season, let’s just over react for the hell of it and assume he’ll  do better than that mark this year. It’s hard to take away anything from either team in this week three match-up. Do we try and validate the Bucs by saying the Rams are better than we thought? Do we credit LA for beating a Tampa team that a lot of people thought would be a vastly improved franchise less than a month ago? Do both teams suck and it was simply a matter of someone had to win or are both teams good and it was just a matter of somebody had to win, or are both teams pretty good and it was was just a matter of somebody had to lose? The pivots prove the real difference here with how the teams will walk from the enLIGHTENing Sunday contest away mentally. Tampa Bay; “Damn, we can’t even beat the Rams at home?” Los Angeles; “Damn. We just beat the Buccaneers on the road!”

Philadelphia Eagles 34, Pittsburgh Steelers 3

This was a perfect storm type product of media belief from both teams that helped concoct the upset of week three and probably of the first quarter overall of the season. The Steelers just managed a huge win over their rivals the Bengals in week two, while the Eagles flew in under the scrutiny that they hadn’t played anyone all season. The Eagles had a major score to settle with doubters and what better way to do that then to deliver a sound upset to a team who probably came in believing like the rest of us; that the Eagles were destined for a loss. Instead, we leave week three with an undefeated Philadelphia team that’s starting to flaunt their feathers more proudly while the Steelers walk away knowing they took a week off and now have a dent in their metal to show for it. The pivots — Philadelphia; “Finally being taken seriously, but let’s not act like we know.” Pittsburgh: “Alright, we abandoned a week and it showed. three weeks till the Patriots file into the Burg, let’s having matching overall records when they leave. (5-1)

Dallas Cowboys 31, Chicago Bears 17

Sunday Night Football needs to stop looking at the names on the front of jerseys when they schedule games and consider the names on the back a little more. Luck fully at least D-town held up their end of the load, while the Brian Hoyer led Bears just looked like a flat team that is just looking to cash NFL pay checks. Sunday Night’s showcase featured a first half where Chi-town scored three points to the Cowboys 24 and had those looking to work in the morning hitting the off button on their tvs early. Chicago: “Go Cubs Go!” Dallas; “Well… At least we can handle QBs like Hoyer.”

Atlanta Falcons 45, New Orleans Saints 32

Pivot week’s finale ended in the Big Easy where the Saints hosted NFC South foe the Falcons and played a pretty good host as well. It was a night MNF looked back on how football helped the city of New Orleans find it’s identity again after the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina. All the honoring was done away from football as the Saints defense allowed the dirty birds to take the gridiron at will, especially through the ground game! Devonta Freeman racked up 152 yards and set up Tevin Coleman with three very vulture-esque (4) short yardage touchdowns. The Saints defensive problems lingering from a year ago went unsolved into 2016 and the Saints are destined to face more issues on that side of the ball as the city of New Orleans is destined to eventually face the fact that they’re a town below sea level in a hurricane heavy location. Luckily for the “Aints” they have a future to correct it, it just won’t be till January. Atlanta; “Freeman or Coleman?… Screw it, we’re winning! Stick with both.” New Orleans; “Maybe we should rebuild. Go after J. Peppers… Jabril Peppers… Next spring… In the draft. Unlike our city, this 2016-7 ship ‘Aints’ worth restoring.” (5)

Sources

  1. http://www.foxsports.com/nfl/scores
  2. http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/pattisonave/Making-the-NFL-playoffs-is-difficult-when-teams-start-0-2.html?mobi=true
  3. http://national.suntimes.com/national-sports/7/72/2028320/chargers-philip-rivers-welcomes-8th-child/
  4. http://www.fantasysportshero.com/definitions/fantasy-football/vulture-back/
  5. http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2016/9/27/13057908/jabrill-peppers-michigan-jim-harbaugh
  6. https://www.google.com/amp/www.newsweek.com/charlotte-demonstrators-protest-nfl-game-502610%3famp=1?client=safari
  7. http://www.metrolyrics.com/relax-lyrics-frankie-goes-to-hollywood.html

NFL Over-Reaction-Dose; Week 2

09-20-16

***Quick reactions to all of the National Football League’s previous week’s games.***

(3)

–THURSDAY–

New York Jets 37, Buffalo Bills 31

And we are back to the beauty of the true Thursday Night Football games that feature ugly uniform renditions, mediocre story lines and just enough intrigue to kickoff your football week. The TNF game is pretty much that bar restaurant appetizer; something to catch your eye and munch on while you linger on the real menu that awaits ahead.  The Jets had two players answer off-season lingering questions in the week’s early game. Ryan Fitzpatrick helped to settle the debate that he was worth an off season contract extension with a 24 of 34 night and 374 yards passing yards with a touchdown on the side. Meanwhile, Matt Forte answered the questioning of age that people associated with him in the off season. Forte rushed for three touchdowns and 100 yards exactly as he and the J-E-T-S Jets put another damper-day on the early 2016 Rex Ryan/Buffalo campaign. The Bills “stand-out defense” gave up 37 points and followed up humility with apparent stupidity by firing Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman.  The problem wasn’t the offense Thursday, the problem was the defense couldn’t get the Jets off the field (39:12-20:48 Time of Possession NYJ). The Bills have a flat tire and they’re looking under the hood.

–SUNDAY–

Carolina Panthers 46, San Francisco 49ers 27

Kelvin Benjamin… Freak. Cam Newton… Freak. Carolina Defense… Freaks. The Panthers are just freaky! Benjamin ended with seven catches and 108 yards catching, the defense forced three turnovers including a scoop-score by Shaq Thompson, and Cam shut-up anybody questioning the NFL’s concussion protocol by putting up numbers that epitomized QB’s with clear thoughts. Odd how with both this games contestants being 1-1, our general reaction is that the Panthers are for real in 2016. While still at 1-1 you got to wonder, “What the hell is San Fran offering us this year?”

Baltimore Ravens 25, Cleveland Browns 20

Hard to believe that after the opening quarter the Browns held an 18 point, 20-2 lead over the Ravens… not so hard to believe… they threw it away. The over-reaction for Baltimore; Flacco is bacco to the days of old and the Ravens are a legitimate NFC North contender. The over-reaction for the Browns; none… they are just marking the checklist off of annual Browns problems. Injured/New quarterbacks every week; check. Humiliating losses; check. Still somehow keeping fans coming back; check. Hope you enjoyed that NBA parade Cleveland, next summer’s a LONG ways away.

Tennessee Titans 16, Detroit Lions 15

Last week, Detroit flirted with a loss to the Colts, procrastinating a last second field goal clinching win on the road. So, naturally being the Lions that allowed them a chance to regress against another AFC South opponent in week 2. The Lions are like the girl next door of the NFL. You wouldn’t mind giving them a shot at long-term legitimacy and success, but the mystery that comes with short-term mediocrity just suits them so much better. In the end this contest SCREAMED even! Hardly anything separated the two teams on paper, but in the end someone has to win and a veteran helped a Tennessee young’n to step up and do it when Andre Johnson snatched a lofted Macus Mariotta ball with what was the game-winning score in Motown. Detroit’s continuing an annually ongoing trend of mediocrity while the Titans simply took advantage of it.

Houston Texans 19, Kansas City Chiefs 12

The game featured more 3-pointers than a Golden State Warriors shoot around. A DeAndre Hopkins 27-yard touchdown proved to be the difference maker of Sunday’s snoozer. NRG Stadium lacked just that in Sunday’s match-up between the Texans and the Chiefs… Energy. Besides the geographical closeness that both teams share there just isn’t much here to look forward to between the two AFC teams. Even the story line of a rematch of last year’s Wild Card contest that saw a Chiefs 30-0 blowout didn’t seem to sell intrigue between the two. Main reason; both teams are boring! There just wasn’t much to levy at-home remotes to punch the numbers to watch this match-up. Despite their attached boredom, both these teams are looking like they will have a chance to fill AFC Playoffs spots with guilt by Divisional association therein lies this contest’s over-reaction; both these boring teams will make the playoffs.

New England Patriots 31, Miami Dolphins 24

New England started out the 2014 season losing to the Miami Dolphins and you would have thought riots were ensuing the game based on the NFL’s audiences reaction. For the sake of NFL Media reaction; the Patriots have seemed to have vowed to never allow that reaction to happen again. Miami will simply continue to struggle against the Pats as long as Belichick is there, because obviously the Pats could put Jonathon ‘Mox’ Moxon at quarterback and still win as second stringer Jimmy Garoppolo left the game due to a shoulder injury leaving the reins to Jacoby Brissett. Brissett didn’t dazzle, but he did salvage a win. Fact is, in New England the name on the front is more important than the back no matter the position because the name on the back just simply isn’t recognizable. The Pats will go undefeated without Brady and are even scarier post deflate-gate punishments, while the Dolphins continue to just simply inhabit an abundance of talent with little production value.

New York Giants 16, New Orleans Saints 13

On Sunday “Game of Thrones” won an Emmy for Best Drama Series. (2) Speaking of wins that went unnoticed; the Giants are now 2-0 in 2016 following a squeaker over the Saints 16-13. The Saints are 0-2 but there two losses are close games with teams expected to be playoff contenders come January. The overreaction here is to be okay with the NOLA early flood of losses. Eventually, their schedule will soften once their division (NFC Sad South) schedule inserts itself to their record. Meanwhile the Giants will silently earn themselves an NFC home field advantage spot this post season. All silent that is except for their contest with Washington that will feature the UFC’s unofficial rematch between Josh Norman and Odell Beckham Jr.

Pittsburgh Steelers 24, Cincinnati Bengals 16

Speaking of UFC; BENGALS VS. STEELERS; LET’S GET IT ON! Well… Wait… nevermind. The letdown of a rendition of AFC North Rival drama didn’t present itself between Cincy and Pitt Sunday, but they did play one hell of a game of pigskin toss! Sunday’s contest felt and looked like a playoff match-up where legacies build or break resumes. Andy Dalton continued to break his resume while James Harrison continued to build his. Dalton threw just one touchdown in the eight point loss that was daggered by Harrison when he forced a fumble of Tyler Boyd on the Bengals final drive. Dalton is a legitimate QB in the NFL but his resume continues to fail to add that reliable late in games moment. Harrison continues to be one of the most feared men in the NFL, behind the Steelers continued success he will cement himself as an NFL All-Timer this season!

Dallas Cowboys 27, Washington Redskins 23

Dakota Prescott finally seemed to look outside his check-down option and remembered that Dez Bryant also wears a Cowboy uniform. Bryant and the Cowboys had a highlight Sunday that enabled an NFC East victory over the Washington Redskins that continue to wonder how much they “like that” when they look at their quarterback situation with Kirk Cousins. However, neither of these teams will be fighting for the NFC East crown (which is still the bronze medal divisionally of the NFC) come playoff time. Questionable QB play only works in Foxborough (New England). Not D-town or the Nation’s capital. As tape comes out on Prescott the weekends of 22-30 and 292 yards will end as the exposition of Cousins continues to come to fruit.

Los Angeles Rams 9, Seattle Seahawks 3

If there isn’t a petition circling the Greater L.A. area to force the Rams to make the Royal Blue and Mustard jerseys the only colors they’re allowed to wear then I will work on a draft right after this post! The Rams finally looked good and they had snazzy uniforms to match their play as their defense held the Seahawks out of the end zone long enough to secure a win in the Los Angeles opener. Don’t be fooled by this game’s result from Los Angeles. Somehow those horn swirls seem to always make those hawks look cross-eyed when they meet. Seattle has lost four of their last five contests with the Rams so their is no big surprise there. (4) However… Seattle’s off to another slow start but this one looks different in 2016. The Offensive line play looks rough and there is something more of validity with the week two defeat. This may be the year legion of boom buffers too long and costs themselves a playoff spot!

Denver Broncos 34, Indianapolis Colts 20

Tank-season may not be over in Central Indiana! With early season injuries piling up and noticeable lack of experience on the front-line, Indianapolis may want to consider securing a top draft pick already so that they can trade it away for a large abundance of picks to fill the many position problems they face. That said, the Broncos D is just plain nasty!

Arizona Cardinals 40, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7

How much must the Colts miss Bruce Arians? The Cardinals got back to winning ways following the opening hair-puller of a loss with the Patriots by trouncing the still rebuilding Buccaneers. Hard to have an overreaction from this one; the Bucs will be either 8-8 at the end of the year or just below it. Sunday’s match just proves they’re still in the NFL but not ready to own it. The Cardinals reestablished themselves as NFL Landlords, pulling credibility with their 1-1 balance win. The main over reaction that could be taken from this is that the Jameis Winston bandwagon lost a wheel this weekend with a four interception performance.

Atlanta Falcons 35, Oakland Raiders 28

Right when we thought the Raiders had things turned around, they remind us that they are still the Raiders and are fully capable of losing… However, this is the over reaction. The Raiders lost to a team many think isn’t very good in the Atlanta Falcons. But, to me this is more of a statement win for the dirty birds then it is a demoralizing loss to the Bay Area Pirates. The Falcons will turn things around and contend for the top half of the AFC South from this week on and the Raiders will bounce back. Come years end, this won’t be the colossal upset that it seems to be today.

San Diego Chargers 38, Jacksonville Jaguars 14

Not enough is said for the East Standard Time to Western Standard Time migration timezone adjustment. The Jaguars were probably groggy entering the Chargers game mentally due to the time difference and the Chargers took full advantage building a 35-0 lead by the end of the third quarter. Timezone adjustments is a typical trait with young teams but with a trip to London looming on Jax’s schedule they better figure out how to set multiple alarms on their iPhone 7’s if they don’t want to cost themselves another game in a couple of weeks. Meanwhile, let’s hope the SD fans enjoyed the shellacking of the spotted-cats because it may be  one of the few times they get to celebrate all year!

Minnesota Vikings 17, Green Bay Packers 14

Defense and/or Adrian Peterson… Those were the two legs the Vikings had to stand-on entering the 2016 season and they managed to balance on one leg pretty well after All-Day went down with a torn meniscus early in the Sunday Night Football NFC North contest. The purple people eaters held an off-nighted Aaron Rodgers and Packers offense to just 263 total yards. The Vikings quarterback flavor of the week, Sam Bradford, actually left a good enough taste in the mouth of Minnesota fans to be worth another serving following Sunday night’s two touchdown performance. Things may not be as sparkling as their new stadium in Minnie, but there is definitely reason to be optimistic.

–MONDAY–

Philadelphia Eagles 29, Chicago Bears 14

Chicago and Jay Cutler are like that couple that fights all the time but neither one is willing to admit that it’s time to break-up. Cutler made poor decisions in the Bears gut-wrenching Nationally televised blowout event Monday as Carson Wentz exposed a worn down Chi-town second half D to put up 20 points in the second half and keep the eagles undefeated! Don’t fly too high Philly fans, the two wins have came against two highly dysfunctional opponents in Cleveland and Chicago. However, the early walk-through wins may be just the tune-up the North Dakota State stand-out needed as the schedule gets trickier and Breast Cancer Awareness month approaches. The Windy City needs to finally nut up and break things off with Jay. Sadly, in the fourth quarter when Cutler left the game the offense looked smoother under the control of Brian Hoyer, who may have a starting NFL spot again come season’s end by default.

–Week Two Takeaway —

Week Two of this season is officially going to be labeled as this year’s “Injury Week.” Every weekend the NFL has certain trends that effect all teams. From Garoppolo, to AP to the majority of the Indianapolis roster, the NFL will have to readjust and prove their TEAM’s worth in entirety moving forward. Although most hate injuries due to Fantasy Football stats, the injuries just help to promote variety and new narratives to be written along with new legacies to be built. After all, where would names like Brady, Wilson and (insert Pittsburgh running back name here) be without the ugly beauty of the NFL injury week?

Sources

  1. http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2014090705/2014/REG1/patriots@dolphins?icampaign=GC_schedule_rr#menu=gameinfo%7CcontentId%3A0ap3000000392475&tab=recap
  2. http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-et-st-emmys-live-updates-jimmy-kimmel-and-the-emmys-tout-and-1474276601-htmlstory.html
  3. http://www.sbnation.com/2016/9/19/12963844/2016-nfl-scores-highlights-week-2-injuries-patriots-vikings-jimmy-garoppolo-cowboys-dak-prescott
  4. http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/game_query.cgi?tm1=sea&tm2=ram&yr=all

 

CAUTION: MUST BE THIS YOUNG TO BALL!

08-24-16

The “Dream Team” idea of USA Men’s basketball has taken the form of a nightmare! They lose (or come close to losing), and America yells, “Cut off their feet and throw them over that cruise ship they’re staying in on the way home!” (1) They win and America says, “Okay, they can keep their hands but they should still be grounded from the brothels tonight! (2) Easy to admit that in general, Americans have high expectations when it comes to international basketball. It is believed that the American should obliterate any team they share a court with. But it’s justifiable due to the fact that the team is made up of most the best players that America and probably coincidentally,  the World has to offer. 

In Rio, the newest rendition of the “Dream Team” went an undefeated 7-0 and won by an average of 25.3 points in the process, including a 30 point gold medal round victory over Serbia to flex that USA muscle hard on the way out. But the common American reaction remains one of dissatisfaction, (3) therefore it’s time for a total Olympic format change. The dissatisfied spectator’s remedy is simple and even has an example to lead off of already with Olympic Men’s soccer.

A lot of things irked people about U.S. Olympic basketball’s Rio timeline from their in-game results at Rio to things that lead up to the August 2016 games. 

  • Paul George broke his leg playing in a scrimmage for Team USA that doomed his professional team’s status in 2014-15. (4) George’s involvement with the team was questioned considering its effect on his professional career.
  • Certain aged USA basketball stars skipped playing for the 2016 Olympic team. (5) The veteran players who avoided Rio for the sake of preserving their professional capabilities were also scorned for an un-patriotic approach to the games.
  • A young USA men’s team doesn’t have the chemistry of the other country’s Olympic teams who have grown men complimenting more years of playing experience together. That even legendary American coach Jim Boheim called a USA basketball flaw. Boheim said the other countries Okympic teams would trump a team of college kids if we sent them. (6)
  • People tend to find the games are to predictable with the currently allowed “Dream Team” enabled format. The USA’s blowout games feel like formalities and it’s time that the team is restricted for the sake of entertainment. (7)

The Olympic men’s soccer event is however restricted to an age limitation of participation; Under 23 years-old. (8)

The Olympic Men’s basketball event must adopt this rule from their neighboring soccer event. It would have nothing but positive dividends for the event and the Olympics overall.

An Under-23 years old restricted format would hamstring the “Dream Team” idea that America arguably has come to be bored and displeased with. But, it would still allow for an even playing field among the countries involved to not have to worry about the factor of years played together on such a large scale. Young American NBA and college players could use their windows of qualifying for the Olympic team as a better point of pride then they would as grown men who have already established legacies in the league. Under this approach their would be less hesitation to join the country’s team as we have seen with NBA faces like James Harden, Steph Curry, Blake Griffin etc. from a belief that there wouldn’t be more chances to go if they skipped the few Olympics they could take part in.

Speaking of NBA stars protecting themselves, it would allow for the veteran players to not risk the attrition or possible injuries that could weigh down their later-staged careers. Paul George’s horrific 2014 injury left many wondering why USA continuously  sends the faces of NBA franchises as George is to the Indiana Pacers. If the Olympics held an Under-23 requirement in the basketball event players like George and Lebron James and Dwayne Wade wouldn’t be obliged to participate with the extra involvement of Team USA. The isolation allowance of the star’s NBA career would help decrease their wear and tear as players and forgo future fear of injury. 

The level aged playing field would disallow the ability for more chemistry to be built among the other countries, making for a more competitive and even event. Even though Team USA doesn’t get together year round and play, some of the teams at the Olympics do and have been for awhile. (9, see Lithuania) Not much topples basketball teams loaded with talent but when it does a main culprit is teams with years of chemistry. Just go dig up your NCAA bracket out of the paper shredder from March if you want proof.

There is still the possibility of Team USA dominating even if they just put up their best U-23 players against the best U-23 players of the World’s countries. After all, soccer powerhouse Brazil did still claim gold in the U-23 men’s soccer event at Rio. (10) But their are definitely other factors that would make the decision to restrict the age limit changing things for the better. It would cause for less worry of unjust injuries and rust to build on NBA star’s legs. It would eliminate the scrutiny the NBA stars already face for not competing in the Olympics. And it could even level the playing field not just as a USA talent reduction but a Worldly limitation on chemistry. The games would be less boring on more even terms and their would be less for countries to complain about if there was an installed feel that everyone is held to the same standards.

However, if it does become implemented and the U-23 rule goes into effect, how long before we’re comparing the 2020 U-23 team’s win margins to the team’s that follow it?

Sources:

  1. http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/08/07/sports/olympics/rio-2016-basketball-united-states-cruise-ship.html?_r=0
  2. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3728161/Pictured-embarrassing-moment-Team-USA-basketball-players-caught-BROTHEL-Rio-insist-thought-spa.html
  3. http://www.cbssports.com/olympics/news/the-struggles-of-team-usa-mens-hoops-and-why-its-time-to-manage-expectations/
  4. http://www.slamonline.com/nba/paul-george-likely-out-2014-15-season-leg-injury/#EBuLgxrw9VLFRVHd.97
  5. http://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/23/lebron-james-will-skip-rio-olympics-joining-a-team-of-stars-on-the-sidelines.html
  6. http://www.syracuse.com/poliquin/index.ssf/2016/08/jim_boeheim_olympic_report_spain_is_good_griner_and_barkley_are_wrong_su_would_g.html
  7. https://mobile.twitter.com/Strikers_6/status/762068159360794624?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw
  8. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Football_at_the_Summer_Olympics
  9. http://www.sbnation.com/2016/8/3/12351142/olympics-basketball-2016-rio-rankings-france-spain-brazil
  10. http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/20/football/brazil-germany-neymar-goal-olympics-football/

Is It Worth It? The Zika Virus Will Make the Rio Olympics Better.

06-29-16

You’ve felt that sting… That quick pain on that hard to reach spot. Maybe you were at a neighbor’s house for a grill-out, camping or just out and about at a random event and all of a sudden you yell, “SONUVA… !” and smack yourself, even though you know that the damage is already done. We suffer a mosquito bite and await the painful consequences that will follow.

You scratch that itch for awhile and throughout the following days the bite will reduce and eventually fade and we’re no longer bothered by the reminder that we didn’t douse enough OFF! spray on ourselves before partaking in nature’s activities.

But imagine that bite-mark doesn’t just go away.

Imagine it stays with you after you obtain it during a one-week getaway to an exotic destination. The bite infects your blood stream. It enters your body and you carry it with you. You receive a rash and irritated red eyes, plus start having pains in your ankles, elbows and knees. Even worse, if you have the sex drive to fight though your newly acquired illness, you pass it on to your wife/loved one at the end of date night to keep the fire alive between you two. Imagine that the desire to keep your passion going results in a pregnancy, and now that measly mosquito bite has engulfed your pedigree and been biologically passed to your newborn. You have basted the infant’s bloodstream with disease marination thanks all to a bite on the back of your thigh, causing life-long problems to your soon-to-be child like microcephaly (shrunken head). (1)

So, not only have you been dealing with your own personal illness, you have passed it along to your lover and even worse the spawn of that love affair will now suffer birth defect traumas. It doesn’t seem worth the risk does it? Ironically, that one-week getaway is now the deathblow you never  expected from what was supposed to be a time to get away from all stress. Instead, you’ve gone to a place that essentially created more of it within your life.

So, the vacation to paradise becomes a vacation to a hell that has no known heavenesque solution. At the end of the day your left with the self-questioning of was that vacation worth it?

… But you think on that and I’ll present another topic while you weigh it out.

Here’s a fun fact, according to a study on http://www.insidethegames.biz, Olympian athletes on average spend more than 10,000 hours in the four year leading up to upcoming Olympic events training to prep themselves for the quadrennial games. (2) Imagine now; that those games have chosen to be held in that vacation of hell destination from the topic discussed before. In this particular 2016 calendar year, that destination is Rio, Brazil. The illness faced; the Zika Virus.

Olympians battle enough obstacles as it is just to earn the right to represent their respected country in the Olympics, but now there is one more added in factor to go through; Zika. Is it fair to request from these athletes to risk their future health to partake in these games?… Makes your answer to ‘is that vacation worth it?’ seem pretty minimal in comparison doesn’t it?

The potential Olympians are faced with a hell of a dilemma for the upcoming August games. Do you participate and risk health and the spreading of disease for the glory and praise of being able to call yourself an Olympian? Or do you throw away those hours of training, the hardships, the dedication, the desire all because of a potential infection/outbreak?

For some of the athletes, it is not such a dilemma of questioning.

Famous PGA golfers, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy have both withdrawn from the games due to the virus. (3) Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors will not play with the USA Men’s National team, stating “other factors” as reasoning for not competing, leading people to believe Zika fear is involved. (4) Negate the inital reaction to ridicule the athletes for not representing their country and just ask yourself, are you planning a vacation to Brazil anytime soon?

You can’t blame Curry or the PGA stars or most of the athletes pulling out of the games due to Zika. Going to Rio risks they’re ability to work as professional athletes, jeopardizes they’re future legacies that are already rolling in other events and let’s not forget we already know these athletes from more relevant events!

McIlroy became a household name in 2011 thanks to a stunning performance, not in the Olympics, but in the U.S. Open! Rory doesn’t need the Olympics to promote his legacy, he has the PGA tour. Stephen Curry is famous for his work in the NBA with the Warriors, not the Americans in the Olympics. It’s fair to believe a gold medal from Rio means less to him than the gold trophy or colorful checks he receives from the NBA.

Though, not all athletes benefit from their professional media like McIlroy or Curry.

Think of the big names we get to know thanks to the Olympics and the athletes that rely on the Olympics to build their athletic storylines. Ussain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Shawn Johnson; all names we know thanks solely to the Olympics. Olympic success is essential to these athletes, if not for the Games they would be irrelevant.

Hogwash you say?… When was the last time you put time aside to watch a track event featuring Bolt or a swimming meet of Phelps’ that didn’t have an Olympic medal on the line?… EXACTLY! These athletes need the games where athletes like McIlroy and Curry can rely on their other sources to create their legacies and self-worth not only as athletes but professionally and financially.

So, why might a Zika infected Rio Olympics be a better thing for us, the viewers?

The elements of risks were high enough in the Olympics before Zika even entered our infection radars in society. It’s the climax of athletic drama to see athletes train vigorously for hours, days, YEARS all for a sudden moment of glory that may never present itself again! We know as viewers of all the pain and self-torment/discipline that they have put themselves through just in general to get to the point of Olympic competition. Now, add in the idea that the athletes are piling on the risk of their future health to earn these achievements due to the Zika virus.

It’s the equivalent of telling you to concentrate enough to walk a tightrope and then saying balance an empty Culligan water container on your head all the while!

The desire needed to risk involvement with the Rio Olympics is peaking thanks to Zika! This August you can plan on seeing the athletes that are willing to risk their reputations as athletes as well as their health as human beings to earn the right to be called an Olympian. If you need more than that to be intrigued by these games and can honestly tell me you don’t think having read this blog post that you won’t admire these athletes any more because of the added threat of Zika, then book a flight to Rio in August and tell these athletes that yourself! If you hesitate to do so because of fear of Zika for yourself then you can rest assured that you have no argument against their heart, desire and passion to literally risk everything for the right to do so. They may not be the gladiators of the Olympics we were expecting but they demand the respect and viewership for their risk-taking that their more famous fellow athletes have backed away from!

Sources:

  1. http://www.cdc.gov/zika/about/
  2. http://www.insidethegames.biz/articles/11108/elite-athletes-spend-10000-hours-training-for-london-2012
  3. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/0/rio-olympics-which-athletes-have-withdrawn-over-zika-fears/
  4. http://ftw.usatoday.com/2016/06/17-athletes-not-going-to-rio-so-far-2016

Headliners! 06-27-16

TIGER WATCH! … Still Not Back …

(3) Quick Reaction; What’s the true state of professional golf when the big headline is still the curiosity on when the Messiah of the sport, Tiger Woods, will come back? It’s been years since Tiger was competitively relevant and you really have to wonder; ‘is there really no one more intriguing in the sport of today’s stars to pull the spotlight away from Woods?’ You don’t see the media react like this to big name NFL players that retire, notice the talk about Calvin Johnson has already died down? The media just moves on, because there are other receivers/NFL stars relevant enough to keep the discussion going. Golf has seemed to have lost that edge without Tiger.

Messi Misses Penalty Kick, Quits Argentina… World’s Pissed!

Quick Reaction; Argentinean Lionel Messi quits the National team after Sunday’s devastating 1-0 loss to Chile in the COPA America final in penalties where Messi missed his kick from the mark completely. “It’s been four finals, it’s not meant for me. I tried. It was the thing I wanted the most, but I couldn’t get it, so I think it’s over.” said the 29-year-old star. (1) It is easy to ridicule anyone under the age of 30 that even mentions the word retirement even if it is just from playing for your country and in the less-than 24 hours that have past since Messi’s announcement of future withdrawal the famous footballer has received a wide margin of it. Still, it’s somewhat ironic that we ridicule a guy like Messi for quitting the Argentina National team at a young age and give an NBA star like Stephen Curry the green light to pass on the Rio Olympic Games. (2)

Let the Kevin Durant Trade Talk Escalate!

Quick Reaction; The highly anticipated off-season NBA Free-Agency begins. It’s highly anticipated mainly because one of the big name free agents is Kevin Durant. Where will he go is the major discussion topic that’s starting to boil under the surface and just waiting to find the right location volcano to erupt out of with an announcement from Durant. One of the volcano-points being considered in the discussion is Washington D.C. and the Wizards. Rest assured, K.D. going to D.C. is about as likely as Dorothy staying in Oz. Wake up Washington, you’re still in Kansas and Kevin isn’t clicking his heels to come home anytime soon this summer, unless of course it’s for a Fourth of July grill out with the family. If that’s the case, please Durant for the sake of the league, stay away from the fireworks displays! #JPP.

Johnny Football In Non-Football Related Talk Again

(4) Quick Reaction; Remember that quarterback from Texas A&M that beat Alabama, stole the hearts of millions with triumph and football highlights, won the Heisman as a FRESHMAN? His name was Manziel… Pepperidge Farms remembers! The QB was nicknamed Johnny Football and since earning the nickname has stayed relevant with anything but his actual football play. Over the weekend, Johnny found himself in more public scorn as his attorney sent an errant text message regarding what most believe is in talks of Manziel’s ability to pass a drug-test. The text spawned a response from Johnny’s father Paul saying, “I don’t know what to say other than my son is a druggie and he needs help. He just hasn’t seeked it yet. Hopefully he doesn’t die before he comes to his senses. That’s about all you can say. I don’t know what else to say.” At the end of the day, Johnny Football is no closer to actually playing football again than he was before and now it’s just a matter of *insert 30 for 30 author here* as this tragic story writes itself in front of all of us.

Sources:

  1. http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/soccer_copa/chile-wins-copa-messi-misses-says-he-is-quitting-argentina/ar-AAhEsmw?ocid=ansmsnnews11
  2. http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nba/2016/06/06/report-stephen-curry-2016-olympics-team-usa/85489358/
  3. http://espn.go.com/golf/story/_/id/16545202/tiger-woods-not-certain-return-pga-tour-2016
  4. http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/16556893/attorney-sent-errant-text-withdraws-johnny-manziel-case

 


Will Stallone Weep Over Wepner Like He Did for Ali?

06-15-16

Bah-Dah-Dah! Bah-Duh-Duh! Bad-Dah-Dah! Bah-Duh-Duh, Ba-Da-Ba-Da-Badah, bum-b-bum-b-bum-bum, b-du-bah, b-du-bah!

That’s right folks, 2016 has graced the world with another Rocky sighting, and not just the movie Creed reaching the store shelves after hitting theaters in 2015! Unfortunately, it comes as sweat beads falling off the face of the Muhammad Ali death, that shook America in the past weeks!

Ali had been aging horribly in the years leading up to his June 3rd death due to complications he had to live through from Parkinson’s disease he was diagnosed with in 1984. (1) He could no longer speak after years of being a celebrity so known for his words. He was shown at multiple events throughout those ill-stricken years as almost a wax figurine with a pulse and it was hard to understand why there was so much shock in the announcing of his recent death. The reaction just gives credit to Ali, that amidst his seen weaknesses, knowing his physical state, the world was still taken so aback by the news of his passing. Ali’s last knockout punch after rope-a-doping us for years. We knew it was coming and it still put us on our feet and down for ten!

Everyone took to their own reactions of Ali’s death on some type of medium if they knew Ali or not. Celebrity’s quotes made headlines, boxing admirers shared social media post weighing in, even political leaders threw some jabs on how Ali effected their lives.

I, on the other end, refrained respectively. I did not know Muhammad personally, I never was alive to see him as the sports great that he was. I had lived my experience of “The Greatest of All-Time” with the help of re-runs on ESPN Classic, the interpretation of Will Smith’s role in ALI and other documentaries relating to the topic. Ali did not personally influence me to do or not do anything in particular in my life except for the idea not to tell other people you are the greatest unless you truly believe you are as he did, believe me that idea has been more used than not. Still, I felt it was not my place to add-in a phony sentiment to a man who personally had little effect on my life. I mean no offense in that, just stating why I chose to stay ringside for that fight instead of lacing up mits.

Granted, some celebrity’s and sports figures were definitely within their own right to voice their stories or condolences to the death of the Champ.

“The world has lost a great Champion. Muhammad Ali, lover of human beings, a warrior for the fight against discrimination…a great friend.” tweeted Jim Brown on Twitter. (4)

“The true GOAT. What a sad day for everyone to loose someone so great and kind and someone who really stood up for what they believed in. He was my hero. He always will be. #muhammadali#cassiusclay,” posted Serena Williams on her Instagram account. (4)

Still, one reaction brought an interesting thought to my noggin.

That reaction came from the man who is probably the second most-known boxer among fight fans in the world even if he wasn’t actually a professional fighter.

Sylvester Stallone’s (a.k.a. Rocky Balboa) reaction brought about one that had me questioning how he will react in the future following another fighter’s pending death.

Fantastic man who I came to know well.… He was the real Apollo Creed!– Sylvester Stallone on Muhammad Ali. (5)

… Interesting, considering Stallone’s past history with the inspiration for his highly known movie franchise.

Of the above mentioned documentaries that allowed me to better understand a time before my own in the light of who Muhammad Ali was one was entitled The Real Rocky. Spoiler alert… It’s not Stallone!… Sue me. Sly did not fight Ali, but he did see a man go to the final scene with Ali as a major underdog and found great inspiration to write the American-triumph story in 1976 that became the movie Rocky. That man was Chuck Wepner. All of this is better covered in the ESPN 30 for 30 series’ documentary on Wepner and his relationships with Ali and Stallone.

Certainly, this post is not trying to take away from Stallone’s Instagram post of sympathy. It has been well known that Ali was meant to be Creed and Stallone portrayed his underdog opponent in Wepner. Ali never pressed on Sly for accommodations for the movie’s inspiration so there is no lingering anger within the context of Muhammad’s death.

The curiosity that ignited in my mind upon the public reaction from Stallone actually had very little to do with the former REAL LIFE Heavyweight Champion of the World. The question comes in the wonderment of how Stallone will react to the death of Wepner in the future.

(To assume that it will even be note-worthy enough for print to mention Wepner’s passing when it comes of course.)

From fighters, to personalities, to influences, Wepner and Ali are on completely different levels as shown in the results of their lives. However, there is a level that they balance out on; their influence of the Rocky movie’s success.

Stallone, whose only leading role before ”Rocky” was in a 1974 low budget flop called ”The Lords of Flatbush” (he was also in ”Capone” and ”Death Race 2000”), turned to screenwriting out of frustration at not being able to get good acting jobs. He was also influenced by his mother, who dabbled in astrology and predicted he’d make his first big success as a writer. Stallone sold a few scripts, mainly to television, before conceiving the idea of ”Rocky,” which was inspired by an actual championship fight in 1975 between Chuck Wepner, know as ”The Bayonne Bleeder,” and Muhammad Ali, the world champion.(3) — New York Times article; ‘ROCKY’

It’s easy to assume that Wepner wanted compensation for his influence on the 1977 Academy Award winner (2) due to his limited success following the Ali fight in the ring as a professional boxer and later in life in general and that Ali didn’t since he had fame and fortune that lasted.

Still, Stallone needed to address the credit where credit was due as he did for an undisclosed settlement in 2006 with Wepner. (6)

Wepner and Ali to this day are as polar opposite as they were in the square back in 1976, and their death’s will see completely different reactions. While Ali relished from the grave in the reminiscence of a great man who stood adamantly for a lot of things and inspired many to do much likewise himself; Wepner may simply be most well-known as the man who inspired the true story of ‘Rocky’… I just wonder if Stallone will acknowledge publicly the Bayonne Bleeder as the real Rocky when that day comes!

Sources/References

1) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2789882/boxing-legend-muhammad-ali-ill-parkinson-s-barely-speak-says-brother.html

2) https://www.oscars.org/oscars/ceremonies/1977

3) https://www.nytimes.com/packages/html/movies/bestpictures/rocky-ar.html

4) http://www.si.com/boxing/2016/06/04/muhammad-ali-dead-athletes-celebrities-tribute-reaction

5) http://www.wetpaint.com/react-muhammad-ali-death-1497989/

6) http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/life/people/2006-08-08-stallone-lawsuit_x.htm