Thursday, December 20, 2012

Five Things to Watch This Week - Weeks 16 and 17 (Game 15 and 16)


The Patriots play their fifteenth regular season game at EverBank Field against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, December 23rd at 1:00 PM.

The Patriots play their sixteenth regular season game at Gillette Stadium against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, December 30th at 1:00 PM.


Hoomanawanui!

I don't feel good about the way my team played last week.  Plus we lost our best chance for a playoff bye.  But... I know Bills fans who would stab somebody for a chance at the playoffs (honestly, most Bills fans I know would be happy to stab somebody for you anyway...).

So instead of moping...  Let's make fun of the Jets!

Epic Buttfumble vs. Season Ending Botched Snap.  Discuss.

Obviously, Epic Buttfumble will never be topped.  But Season Ending Botched Snap has its merits, too (especially if it ends up resulting in mass firings).  The Jets have a way of snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory.

I'm worried that things with the Jets are SO BAD now they'll be forced to clean house.  This makes me sad.  I like having Rex Ryan and Mark Sanchez to kick around.  It's fun!

/cries into goddammned snack


"A Christmas Story" Power Rankings:

1) The Dad (Darren McGavin is so good in this movie it hurts)

2) Ralphie

3) Christmas Tree Guy (a surprising big mover this week)

4) The Mom

5) The Narrator


We're almost done with another glorious year of football.  Here's five guys that mattered this season:

1) Tom Brady - One of these years he's going to start slowing down and losing a little off the fastball.  This was not that year.

2) Wes Welker - Why the hell didn't we get a long term deal done with him last year?  Wes deserves to get paid.  This is why we can't have nice things.

3) Rob Gronkowski - GRONK SORRY GRONK HURT ARM.  GRONK PLAY GOOD IN PLAYOFFS.

4) Vince Wilfork - Vince had a monster year.  I can't say enough good things about him.  He's a beast.

5) Stevan Ridley - Even with his recent putting the ball on the ground problems, he's had a pretty darn good year.  (Just don't fumble in the playoffs.)

(Honorable mentions for Aaron Hernandez, Brandon Spikes and Jerod Mayo.)


Did Michael Hoomanawanui have a catch this week?

YES!


My prediction (Game 15): Pats 35, Jaguars 17

My prediction (Game 16): Pats 28, Dolphins 24

My prediction (Season): 12 - 4 (Up from last week.)

Nut up or move on.

*****

This year, we're going to have regular contributions from Fake Bill Belichick for your reading pleasure.  Here's this week's selection from Fake Bill Belichick's second book "My Patriot Years":

December 24th, 1999.  Late, late at night. I'm at the Jets training facility watching some extra film on the Dolphins.  I probably hadn't slept in two days.

I'm starting to doze off a little bit.  I hear my Casio watch beep off the hour and sit upright.

I look over to my right and my old pal Art Modell, owner of the Cleveland Browns and my former boss, had wandered into the film room.

"I am the NFL Owner of Christmas Past!" he tells me, spilling a drink as he talked.

"Get the hell out of here," I calmly told him.  "You completely ruined my reputation when you announced you were moving the team to Baltimore.  They burned an effigy of me in the parking lot.  Now I'm stuck working under Parcells again, dammit."

He scurried off.  I went back to my film.

A few minutes later, another guy in a suit shows up.

"Hi!  I'm Woody Johnson.  I'm about to be the new own of the Jets.  We should be buddies!"

"Sir, no disrespect, but it's late and I've got a lot of work to do."

"Sure thing, Brian!"

Huh.  Turns out the dude didn't even know my name.  Never a good sign.

I buried myself in Dolphins footage again.  Was Marino long past his prime at that point?  Yeah.  But he still scared me.  And besides... Anything was better than talking to liquored up owners.  They're the worst.

My watch beeped again.  A third guy in a suit showed up.  This guy had a blue shirt with a white collar.

"Hey!  How's it going?  I'm Bob.  You used to work for me, remember?"

"Yes, I do."

"How you like things here?"

"They're fine, I guess.  Do you mind?  I'm trying to get a little more work done tonight."

"Work, huh?  OK."  He started to walk away, then came back into the room.  "You want to come work for me?"

"Sure.  If you just leave me alone right now, I'll come coach the Patriots."

"OK then.  That works."

He seemed pleasant enough.

At first I thought I must have been hallucinating all these Old Money guys coming into the film room with me.  The next day I found out there were all in town for an owners' meeting.

A few weeks after that night, I quit as HC of the NYJ.  And that's how I became the coach of the New England Patriots.

True story.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Five Things to Watch This Week - Week 14 (Game 13)


The Patriots play their thirteenth regular season game at Gillette Stadium against the Houston Texans on Monday, December 10th at 8:30 PM.

Woo Hoo!  AFC East Champs!

Not the most complete game they've played all season, but I'll take it.  The best thing about the Dolphins game was the 7 minute drive to close out the game.  We haven't had one of those in a while.


So close!

Christmas Special Power Rankings:

1) A Charlie Brown Christmas

2) The Spirit of Christmas

3) Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas

4) Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

5) Pee-Wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special


Here's five guys coming back this week that I'll be keeping an eye on:

1) Chandler Jones - Ankle injuries have to be rough when you're 260 pounds.  'Cause every time you take a step...  You know...  That's 260 pounds landing on your bad ankle.  Ouch.

2) Logan Mankins - The offensive line has been pretty good this year, even the weeks he's been out.  But I'd still rather have him in there (unsportsmanlike conduct penalties and all).

3) Donte' Stallworth - Back with the team.  Honestly, I thought he looked great in training camp.  I was surprised they cut him.

4) Brandon Bolden - Back from a four game suspension.  He was playing well before that, but he's probably behind  Stevan Ridley on the depth chart now.

5) Brandon Lloyd - It'll be nice to see him get back into the action this week... Wait, what?  He played last week?  OK... Nevermind then.


Did Brandon Lloyd have a catch last week?

Yes.

(But just one.)

Did Donte' Stallworth kill a guy this week?

No.

(Not that we know of...)


I hate to do it... But I'm going to pick against the Pats this week.  It pains me.

My prediction (Game 13): Pats 27, Texans 31

My prediction (Season): 11 - 5 (Steady from last week.)

Nut up or move on.

*****

This year, we're going to have regular contributions from Fake Bill Belichick for your reading pleasure.  Here's this week's selection from Fake Bill Belichick's second book "My Patriot Years":

It was just last week.  I was finally starting to feel pretty good about this season.  We had won a few big games.  We had just clinched the AFC East. The rest of our schedule was tough but manageable.  And then this bomb gets dropped on my desk Friday morning.

Josh McDaniels runs into my office to tell me.

     BB: What? No coffee?

     JM: Did you hear?

     BB: Hear what?

     JM: Brady's wife gave birth last night.

     BB: What?  Brady had another kid?

     JM: (nods)

     BB: During the SEASON?!  You've got to be kidding me.

     JM: Yeah.  It was all over the papers.

     BB: You know I don't read the papers... except for "Garfield".  I didn't even know she was pregnant.  Nobody told me.

     JM: Sorry, sir.

     BB: Awww c'mon... We talked about this.  Big game this week, and he's not going to get ANY sleep at home with a new baby.  Dammit!  Can we get him out of the house for few days?  Maybe here could stay here.

     JM: He says he wants to be home with his family.

     BB: What if we hid his keys?

     JM: He keeps an extra set hidden somewhere here in the building ever since Matt Light stole his car that time.

     BB: Heh heh... That was good.  Can we convince him he needs to stay all night and watch extra tape?

     JM: Maybe... But he'd wonder why he couldn't just take it home on his laptop.

     BB: Maybe we could lock him up in the nap room?

     JM: There's no lock on that door

     BB: Wait... I've got it!

     JM: What?

     BB: Tell him a representative from Uggs is coming to see him here with samples from the new product line.  It's important they see him in person.

     JM: That's great.  He's stay at his locker for days.

     BB: And schedule a vasectomy for Brady, too.


Boom.  Problem solved.

True story.