January 31, 2009

Cardinals fans outnumbered in Tampa, says Institute for Pointing Out Really Obvious Things...

Gee, where have we seen this before?

As I've said before, there's a sick part of me that kinda wants to see the Cardinals get XL'd... Misery loves company, blah blah blah..

January 30, 2009

This is why I have to maintain separation of football and state...

I'm a big ol' dirty lib-rul... In my voting life, I've gone Clinton-Nader-Kerry (after being a Deaniac in the '04 primaries)-Obama. I've learned that I can't expect my political obsession to mesh with my football obsession, though.

A) My favorite player (Hasselbeck) is a vocal conservative who campaigned for Bush in 2004 (ick). I still love the guy though....

B) President Obama is (ugh) professing to be a Steelers fan:






I'm guessing that combo makes liberal Steelers fans happy (and maybe conservative Seahawks fans too), but I have to sort of plug my ears, close my eyes and go "la la la la la, I'm not listening to y'all."

One of these jerks probably punches his ticket for Canton this Sunday...

What do all of the following QBs have in common?

-Bart Starr
-Roger Staubach
-Bob Griese
-Terry Bradshaw
-Joe Montana
-Troy Aikman
-John Elway
-Tom Brady

All of them have been the starting QB for (at least) two Super Bowl Champions, and all are in (or headed to) the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Roethlisberger or Warner will (ugh) join this group of two-time champs Sunday evening. The only two-time champion QB NOT in the Hall is Jim Plunkett (XV and XVIII)... If Arizona pulls the upset Kurt Warner, as the first starting QB to win a Super Bowl with two different franchises, would damn near AUTOMATICALLY get in.

Roethlisberger? I hate even thinking about this, but two rings won for a marquee franchise will probably get him to Canton, even if the rest of his career is unremarkable.

This game is going to be torture, isn't it? Here's hoping 'Tez gets into the Hall Saturday to soften the blow for us poor downtrodden Hawks fans.

Side note: Does Commissioner Goodell remind anyone else of Jack Donaghy?

January 29, 2009

The 2006 Seahawks were damn near the 2008 Cardinals

Behold: The 2006 Seahawks v. the 2008 Cardinals. Lots of interesting similarities:

-The '06 Hawks started 8-4, went on a three-game slide where they generally looked unworthy of a playoff spot, before winning a "meaningless" game in week 17 to pull out a 9-7 record.

-The '08 Cards started 7-3, then lost 4 of 5, where they generally looked unworthy of a playoff spot, before winning a "meaningless" game in week 17 to pull out a 9-7 record.

-2006 Hawks point differential: -6 (15th in NFL)

-2008 Cardinals point differential: +1 (18th in NFL)

-Both the '06 Hawks and '08 Cardinals were home underdogs in the wild card round given little chance to advance.

Of course, the big difference is that the 2006 Seahawks lost in OT at Chicago in the divisional round, while the 2008 Cardinals made it all the way to the Super Bowl.

But look back at those 2006 Hawks... They outplayed the Bears (to a large degree because Shaun Alexander had the last great game of his career), and I'll go to my grave believing they would have won at the Superdome in the NFC Championship Game against an overrated and inexperienced Saints squad.

Yes, they would have been pounded into osprey pate by the Colts in XLI, but it still would have been nice to go to another Super Bowl.

The point of all of this? The NFL is great/exciting/torturous because the tiniest mistake or stroke of luck can mean the difference between glory and infamy. If Rex Grossman had coughed up six turnovers back in that divisional playoff, the 2006 Seahawks might have been THE WORST TEAM TO EVER REACH THE SUPER BOWL... If Jake Delhomme hadn't this year, the Cards are likely just another crappy NFC West Champion...

January 28, 2009

Can we assume a Saturday Sounders FC home game means the Hawks hit the road that Sunday?

First of all, I have nothing against the Sounders, or soccer in general. I went to 4 or 5 Columbus Crew games back in my Ohio State grad school days; It was fun enough, particularly on "buck-a-brat" nights.. but I never became more than a casual fan. Seth K. over at Sports Northwest looked over the Sounders 2009 schedule on Wednesday, and two dates jumped out at me:

Saturday September 19: Sounders FC hosts Chivas USA (2 pm)
Saturday October 24: Sounders FC hosts FC Dallas (7:30 pm)


That would be week 3 and week 8 of the 2009 NFL season. Is it safe to assume the Seahawks will be on the road those weekends? I honestly don't know, because I have no clue how hard/time consuming it will be to switch the Qwest Field configuration from Soccer to Football. If they can do it quickly/easily, we may have one or two weekends where Qwest is EXTREMELY busy.. very cool if you are from out of town and want to see both teams play.

Any thoughts/knowledge? Please share...

January 27, 2009

XL: What we really think

1. There was NOT some huge conspiracy to fix the game

A lot of people cling to conspiracy theories in part because they don't want to believe a lone gunman could take down the President, or that a small group of criminals with box cutters and some flight training could murder over 3000 Americans. It's on some level psychologically comforting to think there are larger forces at work, but these conspiracy theories almost never stand up to rational scrutiny.

In the case of XL, I can understand why some Seattle fans thought the fix was in, but there was no vast conspiracy. However, officials are human; they can be swayed by environmental factors and simply not be up to the task at a crucial moment. They were in an environment where everyone was told for two weeks how Pittsburgh was supposed to win, and how great it would be if Jerome Bettis retired with a ring, and this is capped by a Ford Field festooned with terrible towel waving fans. Officials can be intimidated by crowds.. They can be overwhelmed by their surroundings. They can CHOKE. These officials did just that.

2. The horrible officiating didn't just cost us a chance to win the game, it cost all NFL fans an legitimate Super Bowl experience.

Steelers fans love to point out that Seattle didn't play a perfect game. Yeah, we know that. Neither did Pittsburgh. It was a sloppy, ugly game... and that made the tilt of the officiating towards the Steelers absolutely pivotal. In a game where Seattle was imperfect but still won the turnover battle, accumulated more yards of offense, and held onto the ball longer, the officials denied us a CHANCE to win the game.

Plus, it wasn't just Seattle fans who thought XL was a travesty... Steelers fan conveniently forget the NATIONAL outrage in the wake of XL directed at Leavy and his gang of incompetent boobs. Fuck, even Steve Nash had our backs.

3. We're still almost as pissed at Detroit as we are at Pittsburgh.

As John McGrath wrote back in 2006:

Steelers towels were on sale at every souvenir stand in the stadium, Holmgren said, noting that blue-and-green Seahawks towels were not available. That, he said, seems pretty unfair. More than Terrible Towels were at work. Amid the buildup to Super Bowl XL, mayor Kwame Kilpatrick not only presented Bettis with a symbolic key to the city, he told the running back how he wished for him to bring the Vince Lombardi trophy to Detroit.


This is backed up by a number of eyewitness accounts from Seahawks fans...

I was at the game, and the stadium employees were walking up and down the aisles with boxes full of Terrible Towels, handing them out to everyone. There were ZERO Seahawk towels or anything with the Hawk logo handed out. My buddy almost punched the poor kid who asked him if he wanted a towel (i guess he didn't care we were all decked out in Hawk gear). Rumor has it, there were boxes of green Seahawk towels that were somehow "lost" but mirculously the boxes were found somewhere in ford Field after the game. By the way, even though we Hawk fans were heavily outnumbered, there was more passion and noise coming from us than any of those yellow towel-waving "fans" of the other team (I refuse to say the name). I have been to three Super Bowls including XL, and it was far and away the most obvious one-sided push for one team in a "neutral-site" game I have ever seen.

In addition to this was the incident in the build-up to the game where a Detroit Lions executive stated that "we are very happy to welcome the Pittsburgh Steelers." When reminded that they had an opponent in the game, he replied "we are not as happy to welcome the Seattle Seahawks."

The environment that was created before the game treated the Seahawks like the Washington Generals, going up against the grinning Bettis and the Harlem Globetrotters. The officials certainly played along with the feel-good script during XL, failing to call a single penalty on Pittsburgh in the final 35 minutes of play.

Fuck Detroit. I savor their 0-16 collapse.

4. "You will never understand/How it feels to live your life/With no meaning or control."



Steelers fans will NEVER understand how we feel, because they've CONSISTENTLY gotten a helping hand from the officials in big games since the highly dubious "Immaculate Reception" in 1972. They simply don't know what it's like to have a big game taken from them by the officials.

Plus, they don't know the Seahawks' sordid history of being on the wrong side of horrible calls OVER and OVER again.

5. For the record, these are the calls that haunt us...

A) Sean Locklear gets called for holding on a play that would have given Seattle a first and goal at the Steelers’ 1, down 14-10 with 12 minutes left in the game. Replays showed little evidence of Locklear committing a foul (also, Haggans was clearly offside). Two plays later, Beck threw a game-changing interception.

B) After that interception, Matt got called for a low block TRYING TO MAKE A TACKLE!!!! An inexplicable call, which led to Pittsburgh’s final TD.

C) First quarter: Darrell Jackson catches a touchdown pass from Hass. Replays show that the closest official makes no move to throw his flag UNTIL the Pittsburgh DB started furiously complaining. Oh, a Steeler complained? I must throw my yellow hankie! Replays also show that this was at best incidental contact, NOT offensive pass interference. Also, the official in question was later revealed to be FROM Pittsburgh.

D) Roethisberger was clearly stopped at the one-inch line on a touchdown that made the score 7-3 Pittsburgh in the 2nd quarter. Replays show that the line judge started running in with one hand up as if to spot the ball, but then CHANGED HIS MIND and raised both hands to indicate a touchdown. This was not overturned by instant replay.

The officials were at best inconsistent, throwing ticky-tack nit-picky flags against Seattle while letting the same minor infractions by Pittsburgh slide.

Alright, it's out of my system... for now at least.

How a Steelers win in XLIII can work for you...

I could never root for Pittsburgh. Ever. Not in football, baseball, hockey or rollerfucking. I won't be rooting for them on Sunday.

However...

A Steelers win could directly help the Seahawks in the immediate future. In fact, the worse they beat on Arizona, the more Seattle may benefit.

Let's face reality: We can't possibly hate the Steelers any more than we already do. Another ring may make their fans and the media a bit more annoying, but that's it. However, recent history suggests that if the Cardinals win, they might get on a semi-roll over the next few years. Super Bowl winners have a strong tendency to at least make the playoffs the following season... Take a look at what these teams did the year after winning the roman numeral game:

2008 Giants: Lost in divisional playoffs
2007 Colts: Lost in divisional playoffs
2006 Steelers: Missed playoffs
2005 Patriots: Lost in divisional playoffs
2004 Patriots: Won XXXIX
2003 Buccaneers: Missed playoffs
2002 Patriots: Missed playoffs
2001 Ravens: Lost in divisional playoffs
2000 Rams: Lost in wild card round
1999 Broncos: Missed playoffs


Four out of the 10 Super Bowl winners missed the playoffs the following season, but look at the losers!

2008 Patriots: Missed playoffs
2007 Bears: Missed playoffs
2006 Seahawks: Lost in divisional playoffs
2005 Eagles: Missed playoffs
2004 Panthers: Missed playoffs
2003 Raiders: Missed playoffs
2002 Rams: Missed playoffs
2001 Giants: Missed playoffs
2000 Titans: Lost in divisional playoffs
1999 Falcons: Missed playoffs


8 out of 10 recent Super Bowl losers missed the playoffs the next year, and in most cases those seasons were absolute rock-bottom collapses... For whatever reasons, losing the Super Bowl tends to have a negative impact that lingers into the next season. Looking only at the Seahawks chances of returning to the postseason in 2009, we all might be better off if the Steelers beat Arizona's brains out... Maybe Warner retires or leaves as a free agent? Maybe the Boldin situation festers?

(You can't see it, but I'm wringing my hands in an evil manner)

Still, fuck the fucking Steelers.

Behold the Steelers Fan!

Nate, you are a great representative of your fanbase! Here's the comment "Nate" just attempted to post, in its entirety. His comment is in italics, my point-by-point responses are in the regular font.

Read and discuss, my friends!

So if officials are easily intimitaed by partisian crowds then why
don't home teams win evey week since obviously refs can't make
impartial decisions when home fans are screaming at them? Are you
retarted or is it just your beard?


My beard IS retarded.. I took it to a bunch of doctors, and unfortunately it suffers from RBS (retarded beard syndrome). I think you missed my point, in that SUPER BOWL crowds are almost NEVER partisan in the manner the XL crowd was. Hence, that atmosphere was UNEXPECTED. Plus, you may be interested in this: The little squiggly red lines mean a word you've written is misspelled. Spell Check! It's truly a great new invention.

It's my belief that you and whiney Hawks fans like you actually have
massive penis envy for all the Lombardi's the Steelers have accumulated
and will continue to accumulate starting this Sunday at 3pm. See the
real bitch about penis envy is that you can make all the statements you
want about the guy with the big cock, that he is gay, he shaves his
pubes to make it look bigger, he pays people to spread rumours about
how large it is, but at the end of the day it's just you and your tiny
dick blogging about a Superbowl loss that will never be your victory.


Penis envy? Really? I think even a Steelers fan can do better than that. I'm guessing you're the prime demo they pitch truck nutz at.

I actualy kinda feel sorry about you and your readers that grew up in
Seattle and were born a sports fan. 'Cause not sure if you noticed this
or not, but Seattle ain't a sports town. The mass populus here can give
a shit about sports. Don't believe me? Ask the local politicians who's
constituents dind't give a shit and let the Sonics leave. Plus KJR is
the only sports radio station here. Are you fucking kidding me?
Pittsburgh has 5. Hell every town I ever lived in had a least 2!
Seattle is the 14th biggest market supposedly, but it ain't a sports
market. So you and your beard are a dying breed here. It's pathetic.
Like watching a fish flop around on the beach looking for water.


A) I didn't grow up in Seattle.
B) I've never lived in Seattle.
C) I don't give a fuck about any other Seattle teams.
D) Didn't your QUARTERBACK have a beard in XL? Yup. He did. Dude looks awesome, too.
E) I don't care if Seattle is considered a good sports town or not. All I know Qwest Field is packed to the fucking brim every week, and has been since the mother fucker opened back in 2002.
F) If you'd rather live in Pittsburgh than Seattle... You sir, are an idiot.

So I hope you enjoy watching the Superbowl this Sunday, because no
matter who wins, you still lose. Steelers win and you'll have to hear
about how we are the greatest franchise in the NFL with more SB's than
anyone with the youngest Coach to win and the youngest QB to have 2.
That means more to come. If the Cards win then Seattle remains the only
team in the NFC West without one, with a new unproven coach in Mora, a
broke ass QB, sloppy defense and old ass WRs. Whew! Your sports life
sucks Mr. Beard. It's been nice writing to you, but I have to go now
and play with my big wang.

Cheers


A) I'm a Red Sox fan since age 10... and I'm feeling pretty good about that. How about those Pirates, my friend?
B) I'm guessing you won't be showing your ass around here next year when the Hawks are back in the playoffs, huh?
C) You're going to go "play with your big wang?" Are you fucking 12? You should have gone the whole nine and called me a faggot or maybe a poopyface.

Steelers, your fans are priceless! You must be very proud of your sub-literate brood of mongoloid supporters.

January 26, 2009

10 Super Bowl MVPs they got wrong

Being named MVP of the Super Bowl is one of the greatest honors a professional football player can receive, but unfortunately those who vote on the award can be pretty mentally lazy. There's a HUGE tendency to just hand the award to the QB of the winning team (22 of 42 MVPs have been QBs). Here's my list of the 10 biggest injustices in the annals of Super Bowl MVP awards:

10.XXXVII
Official MVP: Dexter Jackson
Real MVP: Michael Pittman

Jackson snagged two of TB's five INTs of poor Rich Gannon that day, but Pittman had a career day with 124 yards on 29 carries.

9. XXXVI
Official MVP: Tom Brady
Real MVP: Adam Vinatieri

Brady wasn't very MVP-like until the game winning drive, posting an anemic 5.4 yards per pass attempt. I give this one to AV, who nailed the first game-winning FG in the Super Bowl since Jim O'Brien in Super Bowl V.

8. VI
Official MVP: Roger Staubach
Real MVP: Duane Thomas

Poor Duane Thomas.. If he wasn't such a moody bastard, he would have gotten the MVP award he deserved after gaining 95 yards on 19 carries in Super Bowl VI. From the Time Magazine story about the game:

It remained for CBS-TV Commentator Tom Brookshier to provide some comic relief. While conducting the ritual post-game interviews in the jubilant Cowboys' locker room, he suddenly found himself staring into the baleful eyes of Duane Thomas. Sportswriters had unsuccessfully been trying to interview Thomas for weeks. Making the least of the moment, the visibly flustered Brookshier posed a long convoluted question that seemed to translate: Are you as fast as you seem to be? "Evidently," said the unsmiling Thomas while his teammates roared with laughter. 'I'm nervous," admitted Brookshier. He tried another less than incisive question: "You must like the game of football. Do you?" Said Thomas: "Yeah, I do. That's why I'm a football player."

7. VII
Official MVP: Jake Scott
Real MVP: Manny Fernandez

DT Fernandez demolished DC's offensive attack, and was somehow denied the MVP award despite collecting 17 tackles, a sack and generally terrorizing the Redskins more than smallpox blankets.

6. XIV
Official MVP: Terry Bradshaw
Real MVP: John Stallworth

Maybe I'm just a stickler, but Bradshaw chucked three interceptions that day... I'd rather give the award to the underrated Stallworth and his 3 catches for 121 yards (including the go-ahead TD in the 4th quarter).

5. XI
Official MVP: Fred Biletnikoff
Real MVP: Art Shell

The Raiders' amazing left tackle absolutely ERASED the great Vikings defensive end Jim Marshall, holding him without a single tackle, sack, QB pressure... nothing.

But an offensive lineman as MVP? Hahahahaha...

4. XXX
Official MVP: Larry Brown
Real MVP: Troy Aikman

Neil O'Donnell threw two passes right at the journeyman corner Larry Brown, and he caught them. Good for Brown, but that doesn't make him MVP-worthy. Aikman had a solid day in Tempe, posting a 108.8 QB rating and NOT throwing any passes directly to the other team without any of his own receivers within a 10 yard radius.

3. XLI
Official MVP: Peyton Manning
Real Co-MVPs: Tarik Glenn, Ryan Lilja, Jeff Saturday, Jake Scott, and Ryan Diem

Peyton's rainy night in Miami was pretty pedestrian, but the Colts offensive line obliterated the vaunted Chicago defense, blasting open running lanes for Rhodes/Addai while keeping Manning upright (except for a lone sack allowed).

2. III
Official MVP: Joe Namath
Real MVP: Matt Snell

Running Back Matt Snell scored NY's only TD and racked up 160 all-purpose yards. He contributed far more to NYJ's upset win than the overhyped and oversexed Broadway Joe.

1. XXV
Official MVP: Ottis Anderson
Real MVP: Thurman Thomas

Yeah yeah, the Bills lost... But it wasn't Thomas' fault. He kept Buffalo alive with 190 all-purpose yards and a spectacular TD run. How can such a performance be ignored because Norwood pushed that kick wide?

Dear Dan Rooney: We hate you, and we will never ever shut up about XL.

You may have heard the story of the (unconfirmed) letter Dan Rooney sent to a Seahawks fan who questioned the legitimacy of Pittsburgh's "thumb ring."

If the letter is real, I think it's a compelling bit of evidence that the Steelers are insecure and touchy about XL.. even at the absolute highest levels of the organization. I want to say this to everyone out there reading.. particularly any Steelers fans:

We hate Pittsburgh. We despise the Steelers and all their fans. I don't have any friends who are Steelers fans, but if I met someone and FOUND OUT they were Steelers fans, I wouldn't want to hang out with them for another nano-second. It's not something lighthearted. It's not something we can poke fun at each other about. It's a jagged, bleeding wound for every Seahawks fan, and frankly every time I see someone in Pittsburgh gear I sort of want to punch them in the face (regardless of age or gender).

There is no room for negotiation. There can be no accommodation. There is no middle ground. One can either be on the side of right and reason, or be a dirty, dirty Yinzer fuckwad. We will never, ever forgive XL, and we will never see your Championship as legitimate. You absconded with OUR Lombardi Trophy, and I told Bettis that to his fat face.... Indianapolis 2006:

We wandered over to the area near the NBC broadcast stage, and Jerome Bettis was signing autographs less than 10 feet away. He started moving towards the stairs to go back into make-up, and suddenly it was the moment of truth. Would I say something about the injustice of XL, or would I just sit there brownthumbed & slack-jawed?

I decided to speak truth to power…

“MR. BETTIS! YOU KNOW THE REFS GAVE YOU THAT RING! YOU KNOW THE REFS GAVE YOU THAT RING!”

He did not acknowledge my insolence, but more than one of the Seahawks fans around me whooped and exclaimed “damn!”


Bonus: Here's the letter yours truly wrote to Tagliabue after XL...

What do y'all think?

Holy Crap! I Forgot!

This blog has been pumping out content for over a year now (since Jan. 24, 2008), and I totally spaced on the 1-year anniversary... We've grown a bit, and I like to think DKSB has built up a small but elite cadre of followers. As long as y'all keep reading (and according to Google Analytics, a few hundred people are), I'll keep writing. Fuck, I'll probably keep blathering here if it's just me and my little brother reading it... But I hope everyone stays entertained.

Here's a few greatest hits from the early days:

Why Dave Krieg's Strike Beard?

Tiebreaker Pain


Are #12 Fan jerseys kick-ass or gaytarded?

Pink Uniforms in Tecmo Bowl???

Hey, idiots.. our unis are not now, nor have they ever been green.

January 25, 2009

10 Super Bowls that changed (NFL) history

The Super Bowl magnifies everything that happens on the field, exploding the heroes into immortals (and often into the Hall of Fame), and diminishing the losers to footnotes... or worse, to ghastly punchlines (Scott Norwood... Jackie Smith... and for Hawks fans: Etric Pruitt). Every Super Bowl is a potential pivot point for the history of pro football; Here's my top 10 Super Bowls that altered the course of NFL history:

10. XV

We take it for granted now that Wild Card teams (and lower-seeded playoff teams) can get hot and run away with the Lombardi Trophy. Until the Oakland Raiders pulled off this trick back in 1981, it was uncharted territory.

9. VII

The capstone to Miami's perfect season. Can you believe they were actually UNDERDOGS that day? Their mild upset means we still talk about them anytime another team even sniffs perfection.

8. XVIII

Those '83 Redskins were defending Champs, and boasted one of the most powerful offensive attacks ever seen on the gridiron. They were heavy favorites to beat the L.A. Raiders in Tampa, but crapped away their chance at history by delivering one of the most pathetic performances in Super Bowl lore.

7. XXXVI

It's very easy to forget how formidable that '01 Rams team was. If the Pats don't play a perfect game, and if Martz had gotten the ball to Marshall Faulk more than 9 times in the 2nd half, we wouldn't be talking about Coach Hobo being near-Godlike.. In fact, we might have lived under the cloud of a STL dynasty this decade

6. XXV

If Scott Norwood makes that kick, the Bills are never a punchline, and might have been the team of the '90s themselves. Bill Parcells also would have missed out on that 2nd Lombardi trophy, weakening his reputation to a considerable degree.

5. XXXII

John Elway and Brett Favre are both Hall-of-Fame QBs, but a different result in XXXII would have created MASSIVELY different historical reputations for these players. If Green Bay wins, a dynasty is begun with back-to-back Super Bowl triumphs, and both Favre and Coach Holmgren are vaulted into immortality faster and and more unanimously.

Elway? without XXXII and XXXIII, he's Marino. With them, some actually argue he is the greatest QB of all time. They are wrong. It's Joe Montana.

4. XIII

They didn't know it at the time, but XIII was for the title of "team of the 70s." A Cowboys win probably secured immortality for them, but thanks to Jackie Smith's dropped TD and a VERY questionable pass interference call in Pittsburgh's favor (A controversial call in a big game goes the Steelers' way? The deuce, you say!), the Steelers squeaked out a win by 4.

3. XLII

If New England had won last year in Glendale, they would not only have completed the first 19-0 season ever.. They would likely have been remembered as the greatest dynasty of all time, topping the '60s Packers, '70s Steelers and '80s Niners. By losing XLII, however, they tumble below the '90s Cowboys (and not just in per-capita cocaine consumption). While the '00s Pats and '90s Boys both have three rings, those Cowboys never lost a roman-numeral game.

If the Patriots win XLIV, they might vault back to the top, but XLII will always be a black mark on their historical resume.

2. XXII

"I'm tryin' to watch the Super Bowl; We got a black quarterback, so step back!"
-Public Enemy, "She Watch Channel Zero"

Doug Williams had a fairly solid NFL career, but for one marvelous quarter, he might have been the greatest to have ever played the game. Just in DC's 35-point 2nd quarter, Williams was 9-11 for 228 yards, with four touchdown passes and the maximum 158.3 QB rating.

Doug Williams was truly the Barack Obama of the NFL, forever burying the myth that a black man could not be a successful NFL field general.

1. III

Before this stunning upset, many NFL fans looked at the AFL the way I look at College Football now.. The Jets proved once and for all the quality of the AFL, just a year before the merging of the two leagues. This win also got Joe Namath into the Hall of Fame (and even with the win, he probably doesn't deserve to be in Canton).

CORRECTION: DKSB NFL Power Rankings

The Raiders should have 65 points, not 35 (I forgot to count their trip to XXXVII). I'd feel worse about the error, but fuck the fucking Raiders. That makes the playoff-adjusted list look like this:

1. Patriots (246)
2. Colts (195)
3. Steelers (187 or 207 after XLIII)
4. Eagles (160)
5. Giants (136)
6. Panthers (123)
7. Seahawks (122)
8. Chargers (119)
9. Buccaneers (117)
10. Titans (108)
11. Packers (103)
12. Bears (96)
13. Ravens (96)
14. Broncos (94)
15. Falcons (90)
16. Cowboys (81)
17. Jets (77)
18. Saints (73)
19. Cardinals (72 or 92 after XLIII)
20. Vikings (71)
21. Jaguars (71)
22. Chiefs (68)
23. Raiders (65)
24. Redskins (65)
25. Rams (64)
26. Dolphins (55)
27. Bengals (54)
28. 49ers (52)
29. Bills (49)
30. Browns (42)
31. Texans (40)
32. Lions (30)

Move the Super Bowl to Pasadena permanently...

I'm watching all these old Super Bowl highlights on NFLN, and I really wish the league would just move the game to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena permanently. The game hasn't been played there since XXVII in January 1993, but it's a great venue with lots of history, plenty of seating and it's in a giant, neutral city... Not to mention, if you want to make VIPs happy, you can't do better than having the game in the L.A. Metro area.

It was good enough to host XI, XIV, XVII, XXI, and XXVII, and I also love how the game could start in daylight (3:30 pacific time) and move into twilight and night through the game... anyone with me on this one?

Shit, it beats having the game in Indianapolis, no?

January 24, 2009

Off Topic: Anyone else watching Friday Night Lights?

I just got into the show, and it is AWESOME... Plus, it's got football, good lookin' dudes and pretty girls in it! You can watch the whole damn run of the show on Hulu, so get to it, y'all.

January 23, 2009

DKSB NFL Power Rankings (2002-2008)

Because I clearly have too much time on my hands, I decided to rank EVERY NFL team since realignment in 2002. The easy way is to just rank the teams by regular season record. Here's that:

1. Patriots 86-26
2. Colts 85-27
3. Steelers 72-39-1
4. Eagles 70-41-1
5. Chargers 64-48
6. Broncos 64-48
7. Panthers 63-49
8. Packers 63-49
9. Titans 63-49
10. Seahawks 62-50
11. Giants 61-51
12. Cowboys 61-51
13. Ravens 61-51
14. Buccaneers 57-55
15. Bears 56-56
16. Vikings 56-56
17. Jaguars 56-56
18. Falcons 55-56-1
19. Chiefs 53-59
20. Saints 53-59
21. Jets 52-60
22. Dolphins 50-62
23. Redskins 50-62
24. Bengals 49-62-1
25. Bills 49-63
26. Rams 44-68
27. Cardinals 42-70
28. 49ers 42-70
29. Browns 42-70
30. Texans 40-72
31. Raiders 35-77
32. Lions 30-82

OK... Fair enough, right? But what about playoff success? I decided to add points to each teams "score" like so:

+5 for each Wild Card appearance
+10 for each Divisional Playoff appearance
+20 for each Conference Championship Game appearance
+30 for each Super Bowl appearance
+50 for each Super Bowl victory

For example, this pumps Seattle's "score" from 62 to 122 (2 wild card round appearances, one Super Bowl appearance, and 2 divisional round appearances).

Here's the playoff-adjusted list

1. Patriots (246)
2. Colts (195)
3. Steelers (187 or 207 after XLIII)
4. Eagles (160)
5. Giants (136)
6. Panthers (123)
7. Seahawks (122)
8. Chargers (119)
9. Buccaneers (117)
10. Titans (108)
11. Packers (103)
12. Bears (96)
13. Ravens (96)
14. Broncos (94)
15. Falcons (90)
16. Cowboys (81)
17. Jets (77)
18. Saints (73)
19. Cardinals (72 or 92 after XLIII)
20. Vikings (71)
21. Jaguars (71)
22. Chiefs (68)
23. Rams (64)
24. Redskins (65)
25. Dolphins (55)
26. Bengals (54)
27. 49ers (52)
28. Bills (49)
29. Browns (42)
30. Texans (40)
31. Raiders (35)
32. Lions (30)

Our Hawks are pretty respectable, no? Even after a 4-12 year. How'd you like to be a fan of one of those bottom five teams that haven't made the playoffs since realignment? Ugh.

January 22, 2009

3 Years Ago Today

On January 22, 2006, we escaped the pathetic fraternity of NFL teams to never reach the Super Bowl. Yeah, what happened two weeks later in Bettisburgh (also known as Detroit) was fucking bullshit, but for one glorious winter day, our Seahawks ruled the football universe. It not only was the greatest day in team history, and the greatest team performance in franchise history... It was also by far the best day of my life as a sports fan, and after my wedding day and my son being born, probably the best day of my life.

I was lucky enough to be at Qwest that day.. Here's the pics. What are your memories of that day?

Here's a few excerpts of what I wrote back then:

When I was 8 years old, I started refusing to go to church to watch the Seattle Seahawks. That was the beginning of my march down the path of damnation, in both the spiritual and sports-fandom senses. My eternal soul may still be doomed depending on which thousands-years-old book you’ve taken to heart, but the Seattle Super Seahawks have freed my sporting spirit from the purgatory of mediocrity and broken dreams.

In a real sense, my experience at Qwest Field was as close as I’ll ever get to that sense of joy, bliss and peace that true believers enjoy. If my personal faith is the Seattle Seahawks, salvation arrived on Sunday night… Thirty years of dashed hopes, first-round busts, fourth-quarter collapses, phantom touchdowns and 8-8-ness were shattered in the deafening noise generated by 67,837 disciples and buried in a flurry of blue and green confetti.

It was clear that everyone milling around was convinced that there was no way that the crowd would ALLOW the Seahawks to lose.. There was only a tiny smattering of Panthers fans around, and they were mercilessly abused with boos and taunts.

After a long wait in line followed by a pat-down search we strolled through Touchdown City… I was a tad keyed up, because I ran through a little tackling dummy/blocking sled course like I was Lofa Tatupu chasing down Jake Delhomme.. When I leaped at and sacked the faux qb, I flipped all the way over and landed on my back… At least I got a free “Go Seahawks!” shirt for my troubles…

We finally settled into our seats about an hour before kickoff, and I got wayyyy too much enjoyment from telling everyone that I came out from Ohio for the game. In this environment, that was like kicking someone’s ass the first day you’re in prison…

With all due respect to fans of other teams, the Seahawks boast the loudest, most rabid home crowd in the NFL. This has been made evident many times this season (ask the NY Giants), but Carolina coaches and players were still saying things like this:

“We went into places like New Orleans and Indianapolis and St. Louis and won,” said Henning. “So we’ve done fairly well with it. Plus, I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anything louder than the Kingdome.”

-Panthers Assistant Coach Dan Henning


Ooops!

From the moment owner Paul Allen raised the 12th Man Flag, the crowd became a roaring, towel swirling mass of noise which only rested when Seattle had the ball. When did the crowd go particularly insane?

-Hass to Seneca (huh? We were ALL stunned), followed immediately by a lazer-beam snagged by Stevens.. 7-0 Seahawks.

-Lofa picks off Delhomme (I spontaneously hugged my little brother for the first of many times at that moment)..

-D-Jack scores to ice it.. 27-7 Seahawks..

Once the score got to 34-7, the party began.. Chants of MVP for SA, roaring choruses of “Super Bowl! Super Bowl!”, old-school types singing “na-na-na-na, na-na-na-na, hey hey hey.. gooooodbye!”

You know all about the action that went down on the field, but I was so gratified to see my team blossom before my eyes as a juggernaut on both sides of the ball.

Steve Smith? Erased. Those road-warrior Panthers? Reduced to quivering piss-stained wrecks by our smothering D and the assault of the 12th Man. Jake Delhomme? Don’t EVER claim he’s half the QB Hass is after that display of inept chucking and diving… The “soft” Seahawks? Ask Nick Going’s concussed brainpan about that one.

Every week, legions of reporters and opposing fans sound our death knell.. Every week, our opponents have been the ones feeling the bony hand of the football reaper on their shoulders… Pretty nice pattern, huh?

After the final kneel-down, grown men cried, including a little bit of misting up on my end.. Complete strangers hugged each other, and our howls of triumph cut through the damp Seattle night sky.

For 22 years I’ve waited for this, and it’s even better than all those scenarios I’ve imagined for years. Though I love the Sawx, this easily trumps the gleeful 2004 playoff run for me, and I’d say it’s the best moment of my life as a sports fan…


January 19, 2009

I'm Calling It: Steelers 31, Cardinals 15

Since the NFL went to a 16-game schedule in 1978, only two 9-7 teams have reached the Super Bowl: the 1979 Rams and the 2008 Cardinals (Both NFC West Champions who faced Pittsburgh in the big game, incidentally)... These Cardinals are objectively a much worse team than those '79 Rams... Check it:

-The '79 Rams had a very average offense (15th in scoring, 13th in yards) but an above average defense (11th in scoring, 7th in yards). This gave them a prayer at being competitive in XIV, which they ultimately were. Another big stat for those Rams? They were 7th in the NFL in rushing offense... They could run the ball and play defense, and that's championship ball, y'all.

-The 2008 Cardinals are like one of those teams you create in NCAA Football or some such video game, with the big offense and no defense. These Cards are 3rd in scoring offense, but 32nd in rushing yardage! People talk about the "resurgence" of AZ's running game, but it's just an upgrade from abysmal to below average in these playoffs. The defense? 28th in scoring... WORSE THAN SEATTLE.

I did a little research on teams with similar profiles: Top quarter of the NFL in scoring offense, bottom quarter in scoring defense... This is the first time such a team has EVER reached the Super Bowl. These teams were sort of in the ballpark:

-1991 Bills (2nd O/19th D): Lost XXVI
-1992 Bills (3rd O/14th D): Lost XXVII
-1996 Patriots (2nd O/14th D): Lost XXXI
-1999 Titans (7th O/15th D): Lost XXXIV
-2006 Colts (2nd O/23rd D): Won XLI

Side note: Some of you may want to bring up the 1999 Rams, but they were 1st O/4th D... NOT the defensive clusterfuck the Cardinals represent. And the 2005 Seahawks? 1st O/7th D.

So the only precedent Cards fans can point to is the 2006 Colts, but in that instance, you have to remember that Bob Sanders was missing from the defense for much of the year, but returned for the playoffs. Plus, those Colts were 9th in point differential and 7th in takeaway/turnover ratio. The '08 Cards? 18th/17th in those categories.

So the Cards are clearly THE WORST TEAM TO EVER REACH THE SUPER BOWL. What hope can we say they have against a Pittsburgh team that is #1 against the pass and #2 against the rush? Yes, the Steelers have only the #20 offense, but the "weak O, great D" formula has led to a Lombardi Trophy many times before.

The Cardinals bring a one-dimensional offense, the worst defense in Super Bowl history and shaky special teams to XLIII. I see Warner being harassed into four or more turnovers, Fitz being shut down, Edge finishing with 30 yards or less, Pittsburgh scoring at least one defensive touchdown, and running out to a big lead before a couple AZ garbage time scores...

My Official XLIII prediction: Steelers 31, Cardinals 15.
MVP: Troy Polamalu

What awful XLIII calamity would you enjoy most?

A) Arizona goes into an XL-like atmosphere of 70,000 braying Yinzers waving their piss-yellow hankies. They outplay Pittsburgh, but are clearly screwed over by the officials, who are once again cowed into fear by a football media and un-Super-Bowl-like crowd DEMANDING another Lombardi Trophy for the Steelers.

Welcome to our world, Cards.

B) The Steelers lose because of one or more BLATANTLY awful calls by the officials. These are mistakes on the level of Testaverde's Phantom Touchdown, and their fans feel justified in their righteous anger. The response of a couple million Seahawks fans?

FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU!!!!!!!!

Stings like a bitch, don't it, you Yinzer fucks?

C) XLIII is the first Super Bowl to go into overtime. Arizona wins the toss, and the Steelers kick the ball out of bounds. Warner hits Fitzgerald for about a 20 yard gain, and the drive stalls, but Rackers nails a 53-yarder for the win.

Cue Steelers Nation whining all winter, spring and summer about OT being sudden death. Douchers.

D) Pittsburgh goes all XXIV on Arizona, comprehensively shattering the franchise and sending it back to the desert utterly humiliated. This absolute destruction of the Cardinals clears the path for Seattle to ascend back to the top of the NFC West in 2009.

Any other fantasies of Schadenfreude from y'all?

January 18, 2009

Well, if there is a god, she hates us.

Steelers v. Cardinals. In the Super Bowl.

Fuck.

I'll be watching, of course, and tepidly kinda-sorta rooting for Arizona... But Jesus... This is like choosing between eating a plate of steaming dogshit or a bowl of mingled pork & bean hobo diarrhea.

Can anyone even think of a championship matchup more painful to a single "third party" fanbase? I'm drawing a blank...

My gut feeling? Pittsburgh by two touchdowns. I just can't give THAT great of a chance to THE WORST TEAM TO EVER REACH THE SUPER BOWL, facing the #1 defense in the NFL. My official prediction will come later on.

Who are you rooting for? Why? What's your dream scenario for this one? I guess I'm kind of hoping for the game to be shrouded in some terrible controversy...

NFC West: Tied for the best?

Super Bowl Appearances Since Re-alignment in 2002:

NFC West: 2 (Seattle in XL, Arizona in XLIII)
NFC South: 2 (Tampa Bay in XXXVII, Carolina in XXXVIII)
NFC East: 2 (Philadelphia in XXXIX, NYG in XLII)
NFC North: 1 (Chicago in XLI)

Hmm, not bad for the "worst division in football," huh?

Still, fuck the Cardinals. Fuck them right in the ear.

Halfway to the Hawkpocalypse

The Arizona Cardinals are in the Super Bowl, and I'm not nearly mature or classy enough to congratulate them. I can only sit here and hope the Ravens win tonight and beat them in XLIII... More later tonight.

Side note: I wish someone would tear out Joe Buck's larynx.

January 17, 2009

Rams Doom Another Coach's Career

Yeah, yeah, a good hire by the Rams... (makes wanking motion)

Spags aint gonna stop STL's losing streak against the Hawks any time soon, and on balance he has a MUCH steeper climb to the playoffs than the Seahawks or Niners face. It's a move in the right direction, but right now the Rams are like the house the Tri-Lambs move into in Revenge of the Nerds... and STL can't use a snappy montage to fix that shit-shack up. No team, not even the Lions, has won fewer games over the last two seasons.

In an unrelated note, Ben Gazzara kicks ass in Road House as Brad Wesley, don't he?

January 16, 2009

Disaster Preparedness

Seahawks fans have to start mentally preparing for an almost unthinkable nightmare: A Super Bowl between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Arizona Cardinals. There's better than even odds that at least ONE team will make it to XLIII, and a non-trivial chance that both gaggles of buttsores will get to Tampa.

If both teams make it, we're screwed.

First, two weeks of fawning media worship for Pittsburgh... Prepare to hear the word "dynasty" get thrown around (even though two titles in four years is hardly a dynasty... and that's coming from a Red Sox fan). There will be open talk of Roethlisberger's chances for the Hall of Fame if he gets a second ring (even though his QB rating in XL was, what? 22?). There will be little or no talk about how fucked the officiating was in XL, and if there is, it will be dismissed as Seattle "whining."

The Cardinals would get much less media coverage as huge underdogs to Pittsburgh, but I assure you it will be annoying as fuck. They'll be portrayed as lovable losers, and Kurt Warner's story will be dug up, reanimated and shoved back up in all of our grills. Ugh.

Then the game... Do you root for those Pittsburgh Dickbags to get that 6th ring? Or do you root for the Cardinals, whose "fans" would never ever shut up about how "they got the job done against Pittsburgh" the way we couldn't?

Apocalyptic, no?

We might get lucky and only see ONE of those squads of thumbdicks in XLIII, which gives us.. Hooray! A clear rooting interest, whether it's the Eagles over Pittsburgh or the Ravens over Arizona. But then Arizona or Pittsburgh could still get that Lombardi Trophy, which would haunt our dreams until next fall.

A Ravens/Eagles XLIII would be the only sure way to preserve our collective sanity, but it seems unlikely. Thus, we must mentally prepare ourselves for the worst possible outcomes...

-Skipping XLIII? Some people might do this, but I just can't. It's the Super Bowl, plus in a sick way I feel like I'd need to bear witness.

-Media Blackout? That's an option, but I never stick to it.

-Catching up on your movie-watching before the Oscars? That's a decent distraction, and I'm probably going to do that anyway.

What do y'all think? How are you planning to cope if XLIII ends up as our "Worst Case Scenario?"

January 15, 2009

Super Bowl Party Fashion Question

The biggest holiday of the year is fast approaching, y'all. Christmas is only somewhat in the game with Super Bowl Sunday thanks to the presents. Other than that, nothing comes close to the culmination of the NFL season. Every year I either host or attend a party, and even if it's Cards/Steelers in XLIII, I'll be at another one glued to the action.

As far as I'm concerned, there are only two appropriate things to wear at a Super Bowl party:

1. A t-shirt commemorating that Super Bowl, bought in the two weeks before the game.

OR

2. Your team's gear (Seahawks, natch)

It's a celebration, bitches.. of football, of the NFL... of America... Fuck yeah! You have to, as the kids say, represent.

What about you? Any fashion rules for your Super Bowl Party?

Just what we need: Another Goddamned Blog.

I just launched another blog for y'all about Movies, TV and pop culture...

Behold....

Flim Springfield!

DKSB's Official Conference Championship Predictions

Ravens 14, Steelers 11
Eagles 27, Cardinals 21 (OT)

January 14, 2009

Seahawk Dreams

I regularly have dreams about the Seahawks, but last night's was particularly weird.

For whatever reason, I couldn't watch a Seahawks game. The weird part? It was a playoff game between this year's 4-12 Hawks and the Denver Broncos. Even within the dream, I had a hard time believing that Seattle was in the playoffs, and against an AFC opponent. I checked ESPN.com and texted my friends, both to get updates and make sure that it wasn't a dream (yes, within the dream).

The dream Seahawks won this dream playoff game 60-57. In OT. Extremely plausible, no?

It took me a few minutes after waking up to realize none of it had happened, and that realization somewhat ruined my morning.

God, I am a nerrrrrrrrrrrd.

January 13, 2009

If we can't have Jack Bauer as head coach, this guy'll do...

I didn't get to watch the press conference out here in the Wilderness of Central Illinois, but just these quotes are enough to make ME want to suit up and charge into hell for the guy...

"What gets me jacked up is the thought of taking the Lombardi trophy back to Seattle. Having a parade that starts up at the Space Needle and ends down at Qwest, and giving the Seattle fans what they have been waiting so long for."

"Our crowd is different. What our crowd realizes is that they can affect our opponents. They have created an atmosphere in that stadium that is suffocating. When people come into our stadium, all around them is just this compressing feeling. What we're going to do is put a team on the field in front of our opponent that gives them the same feeling where they are suffocated. Where they are like, 'Get me off the field, get me to the bench, I don't want to be on the bench, get me to the locker room, get my butt on the bus to the plane so I can get out of here. I'm not safe here.' Our fans provide that. Our football team is going to provide that."


My wife already has a crush on Jim Mora. Now I think I do too.

January 12, 2009

Go Eagles! Go Ravens!

For us Seahawks fans, AZ v. PIT would be a joyless dirge of an XLIII... Which means that's probably the matchup we'll get in three weeks... I am officially adopting the iggles... not a division rival... coach from holmgren tree... spaz qb who is hated by T.O. & Rush Limbaugh... that all sounds good to me!

January 11, 2009

Flames... Flames on the side of my face!

Bill Leavy. Officiating an NFL playoff game. Involving the Pittsburgh Steelers.

That makes me feel like this:



Like my boy Thom Yorke said... We hope that you choke.

Fucker.

The true MVP?

Larry Fitzgerald: Exhibit A in the case against picking the MVP before the playoffs.

The case for Fitzgerald based on the regular season is strong enough: 96 catches for 1431 yards and 12 TDs. He didn't even sniff the MVP award, despite being at or near the top of the NFL in all of those categories. Now let's add his postseason stats to his stellar regular season: 14 catches for 267 yards and 2 touchdowns. His team now is one win away from the first Super Bowl in that franchise's sordid history...

How is that not a MUCH stronger MVP resume than Peyton Manning's?

To steal a concept from Gregg Easterbrook, they should call Peyton the "80% MVP" based on the fact that his MVP award is based on 16 games rather than the 19 or 20 a team needs to play to win the Lombardi Trophy.

After the Super Bowl, DKSB will announce its "100% MVP" and "100% All-DKSB Team." Stay tuned, y'all.

Screw the Cardinals

Yeah, I know Steffes over on Seahawk Addicts has gone the classy route, but I'm not about to get warm and fuzzy and start pulling for our hated division rivals.

They're still the Cardinals, and they're coached by a dude who has an ill-gotten ring from XL*. I'm not about to go soft because they're on a little Hickory Huskers-style run.

I guess the only way I could feel good about AZ going to XLIII would be if they played the Steelers, had to face 70,000 asshead towel-waving Yinzers, and got assplowed by the refs.

Then I would laugh an evil laugh.

January 10, 2009

Titans Get XL'd

Wow. On two KEY calls, Tennessee got screwed, and it leads directly to a Ravens win.

-Flacco sure appeared to step on the back line of the end zone, which should have made the score 10-9 Ravens and gave the ball back to the Titans. I'll get pics of this up when I can. HORRIBLE job by CBS failing to show replays of this.

-On Baltimore's game winning drive, they avoid an obvious, BLATANT delay of game call.

I'll only be able to catch the first part of the Arizona/Carolina game.. going to the Americans v. Winterhawks game with my little brother later tonight.

Off Topic: Are you old? Do you love ethnic slurs? You'll adore Gran Torino.

I'm no Clint hater. Dude has made some truly kick-ass flicks (my favorites are In the Line of Fire and Unforgiven). Even a lot of his weaker films are pretty memorable (I have a soft spot for Pale Rider and Heartbreak Ridge). I just don't understand all the Oscar hype around Gran Torino.

It's mainly a "get off my lawn" sort of story (hell, Clint actually SAYS THAT at one point), and it could have easily starred Grandpa Simpson, if only he slimmed down and got himself strapped like Plaxico Burris. Do kids suck? Yup. Has the world changed since the Eisenhower Administration? Yup.

Like Nicholson in As Good As it Gets, Clint's character throws around racial and ethnic slurs like goddamn frisbees. Unlike Nicholson, Clint's excuse is not mental illness, but being a crusty old fucker. The over-50 crowd that packed the theater I was in seemed to love it, but it grated on me after a while. McCain might not have won the election, but at least they have Eastwood affirming their notions that the country has gone to hell in a handcart.

Of course, it's not that simple, and I'm sure the point Clint was trying to make was about his character coming to terms with his violent past and befriending his Hmong neighbors. But the flick still comes off as SERIOUSLY out of touch... Even its sports references are just OFF.

The movie is set in Detroit, which has FOUR pro teams.. Three of them have had recent success (including world titles for the Red Wings and Pistons)... Which team gets not one but two direct references? The Lions. There's even a scene where Clint's shitheel foriegn-car-selling kid pesters him about getting a hold of Lions tickets. Um... ever try stubhub, Clintspawn? Or the gutter where the scalpers leave the tickets after they can't get $10 for a pair?

It's not a disaster, but this one's only really going to please Hard-Core Eastwood fans and film critics.

My Grade: C+

January 9, 2009

Boycott!

That's Jackson's Sports Bar in Richland, Wa. They offer aid & comfort to the Pittsburgh enemy. Thus, I call on all Seahawks fans to boycott the joint.

End of line.

DKSB's Divisional Playoff Predictions

Ravens 20, Titans 17
Panthers 34, Cardinals 21
Eagles 27, Giants 26
Chargers 16, Steelers 13


Boosh!

January 8, 2009

College Football Sucks

If you're a regular here at DKSB, you probably prefer the NFL to college football. Personally, I don't just prefer the NFL to college ball. I think college football is a festering cesspool, a blight not just upon the sporting landscape but also on American higher education. Here's why:

1. No other sport has such a retarded method of picking a "champion."

Even in the EPL, which doesn't have playoffs, you KNOW who the champion is.. The team with the best overall regular season record. In big-time college football, you don't even get THAT.

Sabermetrics Godfather (and Red Sox employee) Bill James said it best...

It is inherent in the nature of sports to seek a clear resolution of the competition. You have two football conferences, two basketball conferences, two baseball leagues—you want to know who the best team really is. That doesn't come from anywhere; it's integral to the sport. It's like a movie; either the boy gets the girl, or he doesn't. Either the cop catches the killer, or he doesn't. Either the hero wins the battle, or he dies on the battlefield. That's just the way it is, whether it's Shakespeare or schlock. Leaving the situation unresolved is unpopular because it's unnatural.


Instead of playoffs, we have 34 fucking bowl games. Really, who gives a flying fuck about the GMAC bowl? It's just programming filler for ESPN. Plus, the BCS system is rigged in favor of the major conferences (just find a Utah fan and ask them about that).

2. The players are shitty


If you are a baseball fan, would you rather watch a MLB game or a AAA game on TV? You'd pick the major league product, I'm sure. So why do so many people profess the idea that NCAA football is "better" than the NFL?

Severe brain trauma, maybe?

The NFL features some of the most elite athletes on Earth. Only the most talented and driven college players make it to the NFL, and only the best from that group have successful NFL careers. By definition, the product put on the field by the NCAA is inferior. College superstars like Ryan Leaf are often exposed as overrated frauds when they are thrown into the crucible of NFL competition.

But some people choose to shop at Wal-Mart instead of Target.. I don't get that either.

3. College football is festooned with hypocrisy.

The college fans I know like to prattle on about how NCAA ball is more "pure" than the NFL. What a crock of fucking bullshit.

NCAA football is a multi-billion dollar machine, raking in vast sums of cash from advertising, merchandising, ticket sales and subscription services like ESPN Game Plan. The main difference between the NCAA and the NFL? The players don't get jack fucking squat until they get the the pros.

It's the NFL that provides the more "pure" product: It's about the money. The players are professional gladiators, and they are well-compensated to play a game that could leave them crippled for the rest of their lives.

You may say that the college players get a free education. Fine, but that leads me to my next point.

4. College football fucks up higher education


Do you really think a kid at an elite program like Ohio State gets much of an education? I can tell you from direct experience: Nope, they don't. There is tremendous pressure to give passing grades to football players, and to look the other way when their work has OBVIOUSLY been done by one of their "tutors."

Plus, when they actually WANT a real education, they get ripped by their coaches and vilified by the fans like Robert Smith did at OSU.

You may say that academic scholarships are a key method of providing access to higher education. I'd say that system is FUCKED, and if it was up to me we'd provide free (or at least very cheap) access to higher education to anyone who wants it.

At a school like Ohio State, the focus upon athletics is like a mental eclipse: It blots out almost everything else. I'm as much in favor of the separation of school and sports as I am the separation of church and state (hint: it's a lot).

5. The "passion" argument

I hear this one a lot too: That there is more "passion" in the college game. Once again, we're dealing with mental manure.

Ever been to a game at Qwest Field? Arrowhead? Mile High Stadium? Ever watch Jack Youngblood play through the entire playoffs on a broken leg? Ever see Elway dive for that first down in the Super Bowl? Ever see Emmitt Smith play with a separated shoulder? On and on and on.

Plus, the NFL offers not just passion, but passion combined with competitive balance. I can't believe schools charge full price for tickets to these "christians-fed-to-the-lions" games like this one... Over half of all NFL games are decided by 8 points or less, and the gap between the best and worst teams is quite small. In the NFL, you can't win by simply being faster or stronger than the other team.

I might watch a bit of tonight's game, and generally speaking I'll veg out in front of an NCAA game if it's on... but the real stuff is this Saturday and Sunday of course, as the greatest sports league in the world lurches closer to crowning another Super Bowl Champion.

January 7, 2009

Off Topic: We've got movie sign! (Valkyrie)

tom-cruise-nazi-movie-injury.jpgThere was so much that looked horrible about this one.. the troubled production, the struggles between the German government and the scientologists, the shifting release dates, and the trailers/commercials that made this look like "Maverick the Good German." The buzz for this one was Battlefield Earth-level toxic... shit, this could have been Tom Cruise's The Day the Clown Cried.

Shockingly, I really enjoyed this movie. It's not perfect, but it's a tightly-paced, professionally-made piece of Hollywood fare. After the relative disappointment of Superman Returns, Bryan Singer should be commended for not just surviving Valkyrie, but making a product worth seeing. He makes what I think is a solid choice in focusing on the mechanics of the plot to kill Hitler, and not delving too deeply in everyone's motivations (we all know the Nazis were evil... It's not THAT crazy to think some Germans knew it back then too).

Singer sometimes overdoes the directorial flourishes (spinning record shot? made me think of Happy Days), but some of them work very well. There is one shot where Cruise and Bill Nighy are discussing the plot in a church, and the camera pans up to show that allied bombing has torn off the roof of the church. Nicely done.

Tom Cruise is OK in the lead role. That might sound like I'm damning him with faint praise, but considering that I thought this movie would kill his career a couple of weeks ago, that aint bad. He is easily outshone by Bill Nighy, Tom Wilkinson, Kenneth Branagh, and Terrence Stamp (Zod!).

Yeah, it's at only 57% on rottentomatoes, but this one is worth a look. On the financial side, it cost $75 million to produce, and has already grossed $61 million (before opening anywhere outside North America). It should easily turn a profit eventually.

Well played, you magnificent bastards!

Seahawks side note: This is how fucking crazy and obsessive I am... there's a moment in the film when it looks like the plot will succeed and gain control of the German government. As we know, that hopefulness is short-lived.

What did that make me think about? The moment in XL, immediately after Hass hit Stevens to get inside Pittsburgh's one-yard line early in the 4th quarter. We were down 14-10, and momentum was surging our way. Now we were going to punch it in from the one-yard-line to complete an epic 99-yard drive, and cruise to victory.

Then we saw that fucking yellow flag on the field. Locklear called for one of the most ticky-tack holding penalties in NFL history, and... we know what happened next.

So yes, even when I'm watching Nazi movies, I'm thinking about the Seahawks.


Grade: B

Hass to Minnesota for a Second Round Pick? Al Swearengen's reaction below...

Danny O'Neil brings us the story of a St. Paul Pioneer Press reporter who apparently thinks that Beck might be available to the Vikings for a 2nd round pick.

As they used to say on Greg The Bunny... Puppet, please.

These fucking guys... Who stole Hutchinson from us, and WHO FUCKING RUINED OUR 2006 SEASON, think that they can get our franchise QB for a 2nd round pick?

I'll leave the rest to the esteemed NFL analysts of Deadwood, South Dakota:

January 6, 2009

Just a Gentle Reminder for Josh Brown: Lick the White Dogshit, Butthole!

The Slave to the Businessman just took another shot right in the fleshy patch where a man's berries would typically be found. Not only did he flee to a 2-14 team that actually ended up paying him LESS money after taxes than the Seahawks were offering... Now his much cheaper replacement beat him out for the kicker's slot on Mike Sando's All-NFC-West team.

I learned a harsh lesson though.. I'm not about to run out and buy that Olindo Mare jersey... Ugh. Here's the photographic evidence of my embarrassing past:

This is what I want to wear to Canton in August...

As you may have read on Seahawk Addicts, Cortez Kennedy is one of 17 Hall of Fame finalists for this year's class. Here's the full list:

Cris Carter
Dermontti Dawson
Richard Dent
Russ Grimm
Bob Hayes
Claude Humphrey
Cortez Kennedy
Bob Kuechenberg
Randall McDaniel
John Randle
Andre Reed
Shannon Sharpe
Bruce Smith
Paul Tagliabue
Derrick Thomas
Ralph Wilson
Rod Woodson


You need 80% of the vote to get in, and I'd rank Tez's chances this year behind Carter, Woodson, Smith, Thomas, Reed and Randle. It would need to be a BIG class this year for Tez to get in, but it's possible.

If/when he makes it, I vow to be there for his induction. Plus, I vow I'm going to get a Tez #99 jersey custom-made for that, given that he wore 99 to honor fallen friend Jerome Brown in his defensive POY season of 1992. Anyone can find a #96 Tez jersey, and I have a deep-seated compulsion to be Mr. "Ooh! I'm so special! No one is as hard core as me!!"

Yes, I'm that big of a nerd.

Even Seahawks Fans Can Be Complete Retards

I read this on Mike Sando's NFC West blog today, from his "mailbag" post.

Mike B. from Los Angeles writes: Sando, do you know when Matt Hasselbeck's roster bonus is due? With a huge cap number of $9.45 million this year, it seems likely that he'll be dumped before that is due to be paid, assuming that's what the Seahawks have in mind (oh, please, please...).

Oh, Mike B... I can only assume Mama B. let you eat too many lead paint chips as a child, or you have the memory of Guy Pearce in Memento.

He's not the only one out there displaying a level of reasoning equal to whoever greenlighted The Spirit, though... I've run into FAR too many Hawks fans ready to push the greatest QB who has ever suited up in Seahawks blue out to sea on an ice floe.

So shortsighted. So stupid. So ignorant of both franchise history and the NFL's present. In 33 seasons, the Seahawks have had exactly TWO elite QBs (Krieg and Hasselbeck) and have spent the spaces in between those guys searching fruitlessly for their replacements. It's not a coincidence that our two great eras of success were with these guys under center. They are not easily replaced.

I understand the Field Gulls-type argument that we only rarely get a shot to obtain a QB with a high-first-round pick, but I would argue strongly that using our #4 pick on a QB when Beck still has greatness left in him is wrong-headed. This year players like Jake Delhomme and Kurt Warner have helped prove two things:

1. QBs CAN bounce back from significant injuries to an elite level
2. QBs CAN play at an elite level well into their late 30s

Matt Hasselbeck will turn 34 in September. Kurt Warner is 37. From ages 34-37, Steve Young led the NFL in passer rating twice. John Elway (ugh) won Super Bowl rings at ages 37 and 38. Brad Johnson led Tampa Bay to a ring at age 35, blah blah blah... You get the point. Our #4 pick in the draft should be spent on protection for Hass, or weapons for him to utilize... NOT on his replacement.

Mike B. from Los Angeles... Hass is going to lead us back to the playoffs in 2009. If I find out that your stupid monkey ass is wearing a Beck jersey, or pretending that you never spouted that ignorant sewer-blather, I will hunt you down Rick Deckard-style. Then I will punch you right in the cock.

But The Great Sando already gave you a written cock-punching... observe!

Mike Sando: The roster bonus is only $1 million, a lot of money to you and me but not a prohibitive amount for a starting quarterback. The Seahawks expect Hasselbeck to bounce back from his injury.

January 5, 2009

Fixing the NFL Playoff Field

This might be a bit of a moot point, since the supposedly undeserving Chargers have advanced to the divisional round, but here's my humble proposal to "fix" the NFL playoff system.

A lot of people talk about just picking the top six teams in each conference, without altering the schedule or the divisional format. That is stoooopid. Are you really not going to take into account how some divisions are a MUCH stronger than others? Plus, what is the point of winning a division title if you aren't guaranteed a playoff spot to go along with it?

My proposal is sort of radical, but I think it would work.

1. Divisions are eliminated.

2. Every team will play every other conference opponent once a year (15 games)

3. Every team will play two games against teams in the other conference (yes, that gets us to 17 regular season games). One game will be against the team that finished in the corresponding position in the other conference. For example, the Seahawks finished 14th in the NFC this year. This means next year they'd play the AFC's 14th place team: Cincinnati.

The 17th game? This is the "flex game," which the NFL can schedule to push regional rivalries (Jets-Giants), or a Super Bowl rematch, etc. This can also be one of the "neutral site" or international games the NFL is so interested in.

4. The playoffs are expanded, including the top 7 teams in each conference. The BIG prize for having the best record in each conference? The only bye week for that conference's playoffs.

Based on this year's regular season, here's what that would have looked like:

NFC
1. NYG
2. Carolina
3. Atlanta
4. Minnesota
5. Arizona
6. Philadelphia
7. Tampa Bay


Wild Card Saturday Triple-header!!!
(7) TB @ (2) CAR
(6) PHI @ (3) ATL
(5) AZ @ (4) MIN

The three winners advance, with the #1 seed hosting the lowest surviving seed, and the highest surviving seed hosting the remaining surviving team. Just for fun, here's the AFC:

AFC
1. Tennessee
2. Pittsburgh
3. Indianapolis
4. Miami
5. Baltimore
6. New England
7. NYJ


Wild Card Sunday Triple-Header!
(7) NYJ @ (2) PIT
(6) NWE @ (3) IND
(5) BAL @ (4) MIA

The extra week of the regular season, plus the two extra playoff games, would be a financial windfall for the NFL. Fan interest would be increased even more, and without divisions you'd be ensured that the 7 best teams in each conference reach the post-season. It would also be highly unlikely that 8-9 (or worse) teams would make the tournament.

Even if you are worried about maintaining traditional divisional rivalries, those teams would still play each other once a year. The OSU-Michigan rivalry isn't any less intense given that they only play once a year, is it?

Can anyone give me a compelling argument against this?

Bonus: Here's a theoretical 2009 Seahawks schedule based on this system...

9/6/09 @ AZ
9/13/09 @ DET
9/20/09 v. DAL
9/27/09 v. SF
10/4/09 @ CHI
10/11/09 v. NYG
10/18/09 @ NO
10/25/09 v. CAR
11/1/09 BYE WEEK
11/9/09 v. PIT (AFC flex game; MNF)
11/15/09 @ TB
11/22/09 v. ATL
11/29/09 @ CIN (AFC game @ Ohio Stadium in Columbus)
12/6/09 v. STL
12/13/09 @ GB
12/20/09 @ WA
12/27/09 v. MIN
1/3/10 v. PHI

Off Topic: Am I Insane?

I don't want to send traffic to this product's site, but I just wanted to rant about this... A certain pro football website prominently features an ad about a weight-loss product targeted at women. This is what they display as before and after pictures:

Before:
before.jpg

Hey that girl is pretty attractive! Nice hair, pretty face, in decent shape.. Looks approachable and cute. Me likey!

After:
after.jpg

Ahhh! My eyes!!!! I bet if you took that shirt off, you could see her ribs about to poke straight through her translucent bat-like skin! And where did her bewbage go? To quote Patton Oswalt: Starches! Here.. Finish my fries! Do most men really prefer the "smack-addict who just escaped from a death camp" look?

Insight, please?

January 4, 2009

Getting to know your new favorite team (for this week, anyway)

The San Diego Chargers. Team of Burgundy, team of Marmalard. First of all, who could really lather up hate for a team that dresses its cheerleaders up like that? Yeah, I usually find the women chosen to be cheerleaders too skinny and fake, but that is just hawwwwt.

The Chargers play at Pittsburgh this week, and like all loyal Americans not infected with the dreaded Yinzervirus, I want the boys in Powder Blue to emerge victorious. Here's some fun facts about San Diego and its team...

1. The Chargers are the only old school AFC West foe Seattle has a winning record against (25-23), and the Hawks have won 5 of 6 meetings this decade. Even in the sole defeat to SD in 2006, the blow was softened by the Hawks clinching the NFC West title midway through the 4th quarter. Not a lot of hate petrol to find there.

2. In my opinion, SD's powder blue jerseys are probably the coolest looking ones in the NFL (besides ours of course).

3. Seattle and San Diego are the 15th and 17th biggest metropolitan areas in the US, and both are growing at a nice 5-8% rate since 2000. Pittsburgh? It's shed 3 percent of its population of subhuman mole-men who put french fries on salad.

4. San Diego has 264 days of sunshine every year, and temps rarely exceed 80 F or fall below 50 F. Cripes, can I move there now?

5. San Diego is the largest US city that has never won a major pro sports championship. They even think there is a curse... Since the Hawks are already eliminated, why not pull for them to get a ring this season?

6. Soundgarden/Pearl Jam drummer Matt Cameron is from San Diego, and Eddie Vedder grew up there... Hard for a loyal northwesterner to hate on that, baby.

7. Finally, I must remind you that they dress their cheerleaders up like this...


Go Chargers! :-]

January 3, 2009

Sproles!

328 yards for the kid whose name sounds like a chronic medical condition (Damn, my Sproles is acting up again), and the once 4-8 Chargers advance. My preseason pick for AFC Champs is now two wins from Tampa, but I also went 0-2 with my picks today. I'm a regular Smooth Jimmy Apollo!

"The Denver/New England game is too close to call. But
if you're one of those compulsive types who just has to bet, well,
I don't know... um... Denver."


Before anyone bitches about the "coin toss deciding the game," remember that

A) The team that wins the toss scores on the opening drive only about 30% of the time.
B) Hey fuckers... Try playing defense?

However, I would support going to a "first to six" OT format for the playoffs, and a full 15-minute OT in the Super Bowl (followed by sudden death after that point).

What do y'all think?

UPDATE: Considering how quickly the Colts bowed out of the playoffs, isn't it worth wondering why Peyton won his third MVP while Drew Brees didn't get a single fucking vote? DB threw for 1000 more yards, seven more TDs and had a higher passer rating.

Don't throw the Saints 8-8 record back at me.. Pey-pey and his boys just lost to an 8-8 team in the playoffs.

Brees should have been league MVP...

Ummmmm...


Congrats to the Cardinals... but seriously, who fucking bites on a play-action fake on a 3rd & 16? That's gonna sting ATL fans for oh, about the next six months.

UPDATE: You may have won, Arizona, but this is still what I have to say to you...

Revisiting Predictions; Stealing Ideas from Other Blogs.

Move over, Danny O'Neil.. I'm stealing your idea!

Here's my NFL predictions from August... Ha ha ha ha!

What I got right:

-Vikings 10-6 & Champs of the NFC North
-Chargers win AFC West (ok, I had them at 14-2, not 8-8)
-I called it! Saints at 8-8, Skins at 8-8, Eagles at 9-7 (close enough to 9-6-1), Jets at 9-7, and the Colts as an AFC Wild Card.
-I was only correct on two of eight division champs (Vikings and Chargers) and five of 12 playoff teams.

What I got wrong:

-Almost everything else.
-Seahawks 12-4? Um, no. Dolphins and Ravens at 4-12? Great job, Nostradamus! Last place Titans? Don't quit your day job, John Edward!

I could still be right about the Chargers going to XLIII, but I highly doubt that one.

Sweet Sweet Schedenfruede

On Saturday afternoon Seahawks Nation will be rooting quite lustily for dem dirty birds from the ATL. Why? Because there is no greater American tradition than rooting against teams once your own squad has been sent home for the winter. Here's my stab at the ten biggest orgasmic spasms of shameful joy for Seahawks fans ever...

10. Super Bowl XXIV: 49ers 55, Broncos 10

Anytime your most-hated rival takes the worst beating in Super Bowl history, that game's gonna make this list. Also, I made tons of money off this game from my Denver-loving school chums... and that was while also giving a 30-point spread, by the way.

9. 2007 NFC Championship: Giants 23, Packers 20

A week after humiliating the Hawks, Favre went back to single-handedly eliminating his own team from the playoffs... Just ask Thomas Jones about that shit these days. Ha!

8. 2003 NFC Divisional Playoff: Panthers 29, Rams 23
Pfft. Greatest show on turf my ass. This upset loss was the beginning of the end for STL as a respectable franchise.

7. 1996 AFC Divisional Playoff: Jaguars 30, Broncos 27

Imagine that in the 2005 playoffs, the Seahawks had blown that first playoff game at Qwest v. DC. How would you have felt? Multiply that by a ba-jillion and you have some idea how those Orange Crush idjits felt after suffering one of the biggest upsets in playoff history.

This one was so bad that they changed the team's fuckin' uniforms afterwards.

6. 1999 AFC Divisional Playoff: Jaguars 62, Dolphins 7

That's what you get for ruining the last game ever played in our Kingdome... Laces out Marino!


5. 2003 NFC Divisional Playoff: Eagles 20, Packers 17


After 4th & 26 and that r-tard'd int Mr. Wrangler Jeans threw in OT, Packers fans should have shut the fuck up about Hasselbeck's pick-six a week before. Of course they didn't. Cheese-eating fuck-os.

4. Super Bowl XLI: Colts 29, Bears 17

You and I.. just between us now... You KNOW that if Seattle could have escaped Soldier Field with a win in that OT divisional playoff, they go on to XLI. But no, and I had to hear for two weeks about how awesome the new monsters of the midway were. I had to sit through Ditka's bullshit tough-guy posturing and a million retrospectives about the '85 Bears (Yes, I get it. They were awesome. Can we move on now?).

Then Rex Grossman offered up the ball like it was a god damn extra value meal. Thanks, Sexy Rexy!

3. Super Bowl XXI: Giants 39, Broncos 20

A great Seattle team goes 10-6, missing the playoffs on a tiebreaker. They wallop Denver 41-16 in week 16 at the Dome, but then have to watch the Broncos pull off a miracle in Cleveland to gain a trip to XXI. They were huge underdogs to Parcells and LT at his cocaine-fueled, frenzied best... yet they led 10-9 at halftime before getting assplowed as day turned to night in Pasedena. Fuck... even Phil McConkey scored on them.

2. 2007 AFC Wild Card Playoff: Jaguars 31, Steelers 29

Immediately following Seattle's rousing Wild Card win over DC and Sean Taylor's ghost, we went to a bar to celebrate. It was packed with Steelers fans, watching their playoff dust-up with Jax... As the final seconds ticked down, the Pittsburgh fans made the perp walk to the door. I found a Jags fan to high-five, and joined him in taunting the XL thieves as they slithered into the night.

Glorious!

1. Super Bowl XXII: Redskins 42, Broncos 10

Ahh, 87... The scab games, losing the AFC West race to Denver, and the OT loss to Houston in the Wild Card round. A big shitwhopper for Seattle fans, no?

Those Broncos were favored to win XXII, and jumped out to a 10-0 lead. It looked like I faced a looooong winter, spring and summer of dealing with Broncos fans somehow being even smugger than usual.

Then Doug Williams morphed into Sammy Baugh for one quarter of play, and the rest was sweet, shameful history.