Saturday, August 18, 2007

Yo, Meathead!

So we are officially in the dog days of August. Things are starting to shake out in baseball, although all of the races are close, including the wild cards. Even though we’re in the heart of the season, I’m a little disenchanted with baseball. It may have something to do with the fact that my two favorite teams aren’t doing so hot—yeah, the Mets are still in first, but they don’t really deserve to be there by my accounting, and the A’s are just playing out the string. It might also be that despite the fact that the sport is celebrating some truly great milestones—Tom Glavine’s 300th win, A-Rod’s 500th homer—the specter of steroids still hangs over Barry “Bighead” Bonds breaking Hank Aaron’s home run record, and it is just flabbergasting that Jason Giambi escaped any punishment at all for his tacit admission of steroid use just because he was forced to cooperate with the congressional investigation of steroids in baseball. Therefore, I’m going to switch to the NFL as my subject for this post.

It’s early in football training camps, and only a few exhibition games have been played. You all know that I don’t make predictions this early in ANY season. However, I thought I’d write about 10 things that I’d like to see happen this NFL season. I don’t really expect any of these to necessarily come true, but a guy can dream….

The San Diego Chargers prove that Norv Turner is a bad coach by failing in the playoffs for a second year in a row. I actually like this San Diego team, and with LaDainian Tomlinson and Philip Rivers leading it (as well as steroid user and all-around jerk Shawn Merriman), these guys have too much talent to not make the playoffs. But Turner has shown that he has passion of a wet noodle in every head coaching job he’s had. I don’t know what possessed this team to make such a poor choice for head coach, but I would not be too surprised if it came back to bite them in the rear this year and the next, and the next…until Turner’s fired.

The Detroit Lions finally finish with a winning record. I have no special love or hate for Detroit, but I sure did like to watch them way back when Barry Sanders was still around. Since he’s left, the Lions have sunk to unfathomable depths—they’re like the old “Ain’ts” Saints teams, or the Tampa Bay teams that used to be lucky to win five games a year. Even though they have the Tigers and Pistons to give them some self-esteem, Detroit fans love football, and I would feel good for them if their Lions gave them something to cheer about for a change.

Randy Moss demonstrates—yet again—why he is such an awful team player and the Patriots flop. Even though I respect Bill Belichick incredibly for everything he has done for his players, his teams, and the league, I am so SICK of the Patriots and their surly, entitled fans. And I’m tired of everyone saying the Pats will win the Big Dance just because they signed Moss in the off-season. I hope New England crashes and burns.

Trent Green has a great season, the Miami Dolphins shake off three years of Nick Saban and bad football, and they make the playoffs for the first time since 2001. The Fish have never been the same since Dan Marino retired, and their quarterback situation has been almost laughable since then. Jay Fiedler, Ray Lucas, Brian Griese, Daunte Culpepper, Joey Harrington—yeesh! It would be great to see Miami come out of the doldrums and fight to make noise in the playoffs before Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor get too old to make much of a difference.

Terrell Owens proves to be too much of a jackass for Wimpy Wade Phillips to handle, and the Cowboys self-destruct midseason after a promising start. T.O. creates such a circus, and a case could be made that his signing led to the departure of Coach Bill Parcells after last season. Owner Jerry Jones could not have picked more of a polar opposite to succeed Parcells than Phillips—about the only thing they have in common is the fact that they are both defensive guys. But Phillips has the personality and ego of a cream puff, and the heat from T.O.’s fiery persona could melt Phillips like a popsicle in the Texas sun at noon.

Vince Young does even better than he did his rookie season, and the Tennessee Titans ride his big arm and quick legs to a playoff berth. Jeff Fisher has always been a coach I admired, but he hasn’t been able to get his team’s mojo working since 2003. With a spry new quarterback who can win a game almost all by himself, Fisher’s got a new chance to make some major headway in the playoffs the next few years.

The Washington Redskins are bad again. How many times does Little Danny Snyder have to learn that you can’t just throw money at free agents to make the playoffs? And how humiliating these past few years have been for Joe Gibbs, who forever tarnished his Hall-of-Fame reputation by coming out of retirement to lead this bunch of losers! It will not be until the Skins either have a new owner or make the playoffs two years in a row that they will have any respect from me!

Brett Favre plays his last year as if he’s 25 again, and the Green Bay Packers make a run in the playoffs. Favre has been a classy and personable ambassador for the NFL since he became the Packers’ QB. He’s had a rough couple of years recently, and it would be great to see him go out in a flash of glory at the end of his playing days.

The Baltimore Ravens are forced to eat a large slice of humble pie, finishing under .500 and out of the playoffs. I’m not sure any other NFL coach rubs me the wrong way as much as Brian Billick. The guy has the most arrogant attitude of anyone in the football coaching business, and nobody deserves to fall harder than him and his criminal of a linebacker, Ray Lewis. I hope they both hit their heads on the way down!

Michael Vick is convicted, sent to prison for at least a year, and banned from the NFL for life. I mean, come on. The guy tortured, maimed, and killed dogs for fun and profit, then tried to make like he had no idea what was going on. I happen to be a pet owner, and I think Vick is the scum of the earth. I hope he never plays in the NFL again. (But I also hoped that, in baseball, Bighead Bonds would be stopped and punished for steroid use before he broke Aaron’s record, so I’m not holding my breath for Vick to be banned.)

Michael Strahan retires, but the New York Giants go on to win the Super Bowl anyway. I know this is pretty unrealistic, but I just can’t figure Strahan out. I really liked and respected him, but now he’s being a big baby and putting the team’s chances of competing at risk. It would be divine justice if Strahan did decide to hang up his cleats, and then the Giants went all the way to win that ring that Strahan covets but never has earned—without Tiki Barber, too. Then maybe Strahan will regret the fact that he bailed out on the team at the start of training camp and left them in the lurch. The only problem with this wonderful revenge scenario is this: If the G-Men win the Super Bowl, it means several more years of Terrible Tom Coughlin at the helm, although I guess if he wins, he deserves whatever extension the team wants to give him.


Star said...

I am not a huge football fan, but you make it sound so appealing that maybe I will give it a try this season. Thanks for another great article!

Toby Millit said...

I think you're mistaken about the Redskins this year. I bet ya they make it into the palyoffs. Just watch. You're way off on the 'Skins!

Meathead said...

Thanks for reading, Toby! I appreciate your feedback! But at the beginning of the post, I said I was writing about what I'd LIKE to see, not necessarily what would actually happen--I don't really think the Giants will win the Super Bowl without Michael Strahan, either. I'm not fond of making predictions before the season has even started. It is entirely possible the Skins will do fine this year. Cheers!

Brent Asmuth said...

Colts will REPEAT!!

Bro Johnstone said...

What about the Rams? I think they will be a BIG surprise to a bunch of people. They have the best QB (Bulger) and RB (Jackson) in the NFC!

Kirk Korenko Jr. said...

Larry Johnson just signed with the Chiefs today. Don't count them out.

Meathead said...

You guys rock! Keep those comments coming!

Ed Attanasio, Freelance Writer, Journalist, Baseball Historian, Comedian and Ad Copywriter said...

Wow, Meat. I never get comments on my postings and you're getting a ton. What's your secret. Keep it up and we just may have to change the name of the site to Meat and Ed's Sports on the Street!

Meathead said...

We can't change the site name or we would lose its rhythm and rhyme....

Malcolm Bossier said...

You are so right about Strahan. I used to like the guy but he's really a punk. He does not deserve the sack record, because Brett Favre laid down so that he could get it.