I did get to visit the new Lucas Oil Stadium though, home of the Colts. It is quite an impressive building, especially standing as it does next to the soon to be destroyed RCA Dome, which looks like it was built by Bulgarian Communists in 1951. I'll have some pics up later in the week. Of Lucas Oil Stadium, not the Dome.
(3-3) CHARGERS AT (4-1) BILLS
The Bills have had 2 weeks to think about their only loss of the season, a 41-17 demolition at the hands of the Cardinals. That game saw Senator Trent Edwards leave with a concussion, and JP Losman come in and demonstrate why the Bills are so much better off now without JP Losman as their quarterback. Edwards will be back for this one, which is a good thing because the Chargers are coming off their best performance of the year in last week's 30-10 prime time win over New England.
It was a bad week for LaDanian "Non-Factor"Tomlinson and his ill-fated big toe. Now LT takes his toe to London, where hopefully he can heal it by soaking it in the ancient healing waters of Bath, or buy it a funny palace guard hat or something, that might make it feel better.
Final- Bills 23, Chargers 14
Fantasy Heroes: Marshawn Lynch RB BUF 15 pts; Lee Evans WR BUF 14 pts; Malcolm Floyd WR SD 12 pts
(3-3) SAINTS AT (4-2) PANTHERS
The NFC South is up for grabs this year, which I guess, the whole league really is. So that makes this an important game. New Orelans has shown a complete inability to run the ball or stop the run this year, but thanks to Drew Brees has managed to stay afloat, wait, bad analogy, they've managed to tread water, no that's bad too, they've managed to keep their heads above water. Dammit is there any analogy for being .500 that does not involve trying to keep yourself from drowning so I can write something about the New Orleans Saints without offending everybody?
Ah, it is much easier to make analogies for getting your ass kicked like the Saints did in this game. Shitting the bed, crapping your pants, taking a dump on the field. Yes, most of these involve feces, not floods. The Panthers do a complete turnaround from last week's 27-3 thumping in Tampa, and blow out the Saints 30-7.
The Saints got Marcus Colston and Jeremy Shockey back for this game, but it apparently did not help. Shockey got hurt again, saying about his sports hernia “It’s embarrassing because I have a reputation I want to uphold.” No, no, Jeremy, you are living up to your reputation just fine. You're injured right? See, you're fine. Reggie Bush got hurt too and is going to miss a couple of weeks. The Saints go to London to play the Chargers this week, and unless they win they'll be 3-5 and this season is going to be close to being a lost cause.
Fantasy Heroes: Steve Smith WR CAR 18 pts; Jonathan Stewart RB CAR 12 pts
(3-3) VIKINGS AT (3-3) BEARS
This game will be all about how the Bears are able to respond to that 11 second debacle in Atlanta last week, now officially recognized by the Rand Corporation as the most embarrassing loss in the history of losing things, edging out Great Britain's loss in the American Revolutionary War, and John Kerry's loss to George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election.
There are some things that even the most learned and prescient of NFL know it alls, (and none are more learned than I, Mr. Football), can see coming. One of them is that the Bears, with Kyle Orton at quarterback, a rookie from Tulane at running back, and a cast of randoms at wide receiver, would have one of the most explosive offenses in the league. But here we are. A monumental, fantastic win for half of the Bears. A depressing, disappointing, humiliating performance for the other half. That's not unusual for the Bears, but it's which half is getting humiliated that is different.
Final- Bears 48, Vikings 41
Fantasy Heroes- Adrian Peterson RB MIN 26 pts; Chester Taylor RB MIN 13 pts; Bears DST 24 pts; Kyle Orton QB CHI 23 pts; Matt Forte RB CHI 12 pts; Bernard Berrian WR MIN 14 pts; Joe the Plumber 16 pts; Visanthe Shiancoe TE MIN 12 pts; Marty Booker WR CHI 13 pts; Greg Olsen TE 13 pts; Abdul Aziz Parking Lot Attendant CHI 11 pts
(4-1) STEELERS AT (0-6) BENGALS
Cincinnati is not only 0-6, but they've lost 7 in a row at home to the Steelers. That and they're rolling out Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB again, and Cedric Benson is their running back. I guess at least they can say they don't all have flesh eating MRSA infections, like the Browns do.
Did you know that Carson Palmer has a brother that is also a quarterback for the Bengals? How cute is that? He even got to play a little after Fitzpatrick fell victim to the 7 sack slaughter rule. Mewelde Moore scores three TDs for the Steelers, and I become more and more disenchanted with fantasy football.
Final- Steelers 38, Bengals 10
Fantasy Heroes: Steelers DST 11 pts; Ben Roethlisberger QB PIT 20 pts; Mewelde Moore RB PIT 33 pts; Hines Ward WR PIT 12 pts; Nate Washington WR PIT 11 pts; Chad Johnson WR CIN 11 pts
(5-0) TITANS AT (1-4) CHIEFS
After last week's cavalcade of upsets, there is only one undefeated team left in the NFL. That team is your Tennessee Titans. They had the good fortune of sitting out what turned out to be a very dangerous weekend for a lot of good teams, but now they get their own chance to avoid an upset against a very, very, very bad football team.
The Chiefs played all 3 of their quarterbacks in this one, and wouldn't you know it, they are all not good. In fairness though, they could have had Len Dawson, Rich Gannon, and Joe Montana alternate series in this game, and the Chiefs still would have gotten killed because they gave up over 300 yards rushing to Chris Johnson and LenDale White.
This is Herm Edwards' third season in KC, and I have to ask myself, where the hell is this thing going? I mean, I love Herm and all, but since he got traded to the Chiefs this franchise just keeps getting worse and worse and worse. Herm's response after his team got repeatedly gashed for runs that could have gone on for 1000 yards had not the NFL decided to make the field 100 yards long, "“They hit some big runs at the end. Guys not playing their gaps and that’s kind of been our Achilles’ Heel from the beginning to right now. We worked on it all during the bye week and we thought we had some things corrected.” What? You worked on it all week during the bye week, and you still gave up 300 yards? That almost makes me sad.
Final- Titans 34, Chiefs 10
Fantasy Heroes: LenDale White RB TEN 34 pts; Chris Johnson RB TEN 24 pts
(2-3) RAVENS AT (2-3) DOLPHINS
Oooooo, we have a little bit of animosity built in to this game. Apparently, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said something in defense of his offensive coordinator Cameron Cameron's 1 season stint as Dolphins head coach to the effect of, "He did OK given what he had to work with." The Dolphins have taken umbrage with this comment. Umbrage that they hope to convert into the Ravens' 4th straight loss.
Unfortunately, the Dolphins and their wacky Amos Alonzo Stagg formations could not avenge Trent Green's concussed brain and stick it to Cameron Cameron and company. The Ravens win, and gave Cameron the game ball afterwards. Cameron says after the game, "When you give your heart and soul to something and it doesn’t work out, some of that pain comes back.”" Holy geez Cameron, get over yourself. I bet Trent Green was feeling pain too in that picture below that happened after you called for him to be lead blocker on a reverse, or he would have if he was conscious. Douche.
Final- Ravens 27, Dolphins 13
Fantasy Heroes- Cameron Cameron Offensive Coordinator BAL 1,000,000 pts; Willis McGahee RB BAL 21 pts; Derrick Mason WR BAL 14 pts
(2-4) 49ers AT (4-1) GIANTS
There were alot of WTF games last week, but the WTFest of all for me had to be the Giants getting drilled by the Browns. My only valid explanation for that one was that the Giants were afraid to tackle the Browns because they know everyone on the Browns has MRSA. Tom Coughlin ain't sweatin it though, he says, "This team will bounce back. I believe that," which is much more encouraging than him saying "I think this team is now spiraling at light speed toward the Clusterfuck Nebula", which is probably more like what Wade Phillips is saying to himself right about now.
And thus ends the Mike Nolan epoch in San Francisco. Actually, I'm glad they went ahead and did it this week. It sure beats the reports that were on ESPN earlier this week that said something like, "Mike Nolan is expected to be fired after this week's game vs. Seattle." I was surprised they didn't add after that, "Shhhhhhh...don't tell Mike Nolan. It's a secret." If you're going to tell the whole world you're going to fire someone after the next game, why don't you just fire him now? That made no sense.
Anyway, Nolan is gone and Mike Singletary is in for the rest of the year. Mike Singletary. I remember I once coughed in the vicinity of his Domino's personal pizza in the locker room after a preseason game in Miami back in 89. He acted all pissy about it. In hindsight I should have been like, "Hey Samurai, I'm a 14 year old kid who is 3000 miles away from home and hasn't seen his family or friends in a month, I've been working for the last 19 hours and I'm picking up sweaty laundry without any rubber gloves, I know you had a grueling day today with those 3 snaps you put in during this Week 1 Preseason game, sorry I coughed near your precious Domino's pizza. Just puff your eyes out all intense-like and eat it. I'm sure you'll live to tell the tale."
Final- Giants 29, Niners 17
Fantasy Heroes: Giants DST 16 pts; Brandon Jacobs RB SF 18 pts; Josh Morgan WR SF 14 pts
(4-2) COWBOYS AT (1-4) RAMS
Not a good time for the Cowboys to have to turn to their backup QB, the justified and ancient Brad Johnson. The Boys lost for the second time in their last 3 starts last week, on a blocked punt in overtime against Arizona, and lost Tony Romo to a broken pinky. The response to that was to make a panic trade for Detroit WR Roy Williams that this franchise is going to regret probably up until the Earth falls off its axis on December 21, 2012. A couple of weeks ago, this game looked like a gimme for Dallas, but in last week's win over the Redskins, the Rams looked like a different outfit under interim coach Jim Haslett than the Ensemble of Lost Souls they were under Scott Linehan.
It is officially panic time for the Cowboys. They didn't just lose to the Rams, they got beaten badly. I don't remember the Cowboys getting beat this badly since they lost 44-0 to the Bears in 85. Johnson was horrible, Roy Williams didn't catch a pass, and the defense got steamrolled by Steven Jackson, who rushed for 160 yards and 3 TDs. The Cowboys are melting down so spectacularly that the whole thing should be on TMZ. I wouldn't be surprised if Jerry Jones shaves his head and bashes in a car window with an umbrella any day now. Mr. Football's piece of free advice to the Cowboys; Marion Barber is your best player, give him the ball as much as possible and see if he can carry you to one win to break the free fall.
Final- Rams 34, Cowboys 14
Fantasy Heroes: Steven Jackson RB STL 37 pts; Marion Barber RB DAL 18 pts; Donnie Avery WR STL 12 pts; Martellus Bennet WR DAL 12 pts
(0-5) LIONS AT (1-4) TEXANS
Mr. Football christens this the first of what always ends up being many completely meaningless games of the NFL season. Both of these teams seasons are over. The Lions season is probably more over than the Texans, but the Texans, they're finished too. Don't kid yourself. I had a conversation at the wedding I went to this weekend with a guy who is from Michigan and was a Lions fan, but has abandoned his team for the Colts. He said he just couldn't take it anymore, and that the team had never won more than nine games in his lifetime. I was like, "What about when Barry Sanders was there?", he said that no, they had never won more than nine games with him either. I know that to be false, but he spoke with such vitriol and hurt about the Lions that I didn't have the heart to tell him that.
The Lions fall behind 21-0 early in the game, as is their standard operating procedure, and get some points in garbagio time to make the game look closer than it really was. Calvin Johnson did have 2 catches for 154 yards for the Lions though, and Dan Orlovsky managed to keep his exuberance contained within the dimensions of an NFL playing field this week, so I guess that's progress.
Final- Texans 28, Lions 21
Fantasy Heroes: Matt Schaub QB HOU 21 pts; Steve Slaton RB HOU 14 pts; Ahman Green RB HOU 12 pts; Andre Johnson WR HOU 16 pts; Owen Daniels TE HOU 18 pts; Kevin Smith RB DET 12 pts; Calvin Johnson WR DET 23 pts
Ah Yes, With Incompetence Such As This, America Will Be An Easy Conquest
(3-2) COLTS AT (3-3) PACKERS
As I said earlier, I spent this weekend in Indianapolis, and visited the Colts' new digs. Being that Peyton Manning has been QB of my fantasy team since 2002, I've developed quite an attachment to the team, so I also spent about 150 bucks on Colts paraphernalia. The fresh faced young lass at the Pro Shop assured me that the team had turned the corner with last weeks' spanking of the Ravens, and it would be like 2005 all over again from here on out. So with all that feel-good Colts mojo, how can they lose this one?
Immediately following this game, I went outside and hit golf balls off the head of my garden gnome sized Peyton Manning bobblehead I had just purchased. After showing an inability to stop throwing touchdowns last week, when I benched him after 5 weeks of sub-mediocre play, he was back in my lineup this week, and went right back to sucking. He threw 0 TD passes to his team, and 2 to the Packers. Maybe he needs a sixth knee operation, I'm starting to think his staph infection has become sentient and is now inhabiting his very soul.
Final- Packers 34, Colts 14
Fantasy Heroes: Packers DST 16 pts; Dominic Rhodes RB IND 23 pts; Ryan Grant RB GB 19 pts;
(3-2) JETS AT (1-4) RAIDERS
It took over a month, but the Brett Favre Circus has revved up once again after seemingly subsiding after he was traded to the Jets. He apparently called his friend Matt Millen before the Lions played the Packers in Week 2, and gave a lengthy dissertation complete with Power Point slideshow on how to beat the Packers. Then he called Tony Romo after he broke his finger last week and told him that he hopes his pinky heals soon, and that if it doesn't he'll be there to retire and unretire and be the Cowboys quarterback next year.
Of course, Brett Favre denied all of this, then kind of undenied it, then started speaking in the third person. I think I remember hearing somewhere that all drug addicts are liars by definition. I also remember hearing once that once you're a drug addict you're always a drug addict. Well, it's documented that Brett Favre was a drug addict, which means he is a drug addict, which means he's a liar, so why does everyone always act so shocked when he gets caught in a lie? Because he's been in Wrangler commercials? Because John Madden loves him? Why?
Another thing about Favre, does any quarterback put on a bigger show of histrionic disappointment when one of his receivers drops a pass? It's like wacthing Moises Alou yell at Steve Bartman. Just once I'd like to see Laveraeneus Coles or someone start jumping up and down and put his hands on his head when Favre gunslings one 7 feet over his head when he's wide open. How about that? The Raiders win in OT for the first victory of what is sure to be the long and prosperous Tom Cable era. Favre throws 0 TD and 2 picks and posts passer rating of 47.8.
Final- Raiders 16, Jets 13 OT
Fantasy Heroes: Thomas Jones RB NYJ 17 pts; Javon Walker WR OAK 13 pts
"Hey Javon, Want To Know How To Beat the Packers?"
(2-3) BROWNS AT (4-2) REDSKINS
A lot of weird stuff happened in the NFL in Week 6. Among those were the Browns pasting the previously unbeaten Giants in prime time, and the Redskins losing at home to a Rams team that was winless and had just fired their coach. Were those performances aberrations? Or a harbinger of things to come? In a world gone insane, only this game holds the answer.
And the answer is......Browns, still bad, Redskins, still good. Actually, the Browns didn't play all that badly on the defensive side of the ball, if you discount the fact that Clinton Portis gashed them for 6.5 yards per on 27 carries, and the Redskins probably still would have won if they just handed the ball off to Portis on every play. Okay, the Browns actually played pretty bad on defense too then. But the offense, my God. Derek Anderson is a terrible, terrible quarterback. He completed 14 of 37 pass attempts, and has now completed 49% of his pass attempts on the season. That's the worst in the league by far. That was an awesome move by the Browns to give him $24 million guaranteed over 3 years when they just drafted Brady Quinn last year. An awesome move.
Final- Redskins 14, Browns 11
Fantasy Heroes: Santana Moss WR WSH 13 pts; Clinton Portis RB WSH 24 pts
(1-4) SEAHAWKS AT (4-2) BUCS
Mike Holmgren's last season in Seattle has been a lost season so far. They upgrade this week from their third string QB, Charlie Frye, to their second string QB, Seneca Wallace. Their starter, Matt Hasselbeck, is away practicing his Bahston accent and his singing of "Dot Commmmmmmmmmm" for those Expedia commercials. We all know though, that it is only a matter of time before Jim Mora Jr. brings in Michael Vick to be his QB when he gets out of jail and Mora is the new head coach. You read it here first. From Mr. Football.
This was one of the least viewed prime time NFL games in recent history, as it was going up against Game 7 of the ALCS, which was also taking place in Tampa. Nobody missed anything. Seattle's offense was totally helpless and passes for only 73 yards, as the Bucs won easily.
Final- Bucs 20, Seahawks 10
Fantasy Heroes: Antonio Bryant WR TB 17 pts; Earnest Graham RB TB 12 pts; Jeff Garcia QB TB 20 pts
(4-2) BRONCOS AT (4-2) PATRIOTS
For the second week in a row, the Tom Brady-less Patriots are in prime time. Last week didn't go so well. They went to San Diego and got absolutely embarrassed, to the point where you have to wonder now if Matt Cassel is going to last the rest of the season as their QB. The Broncos had a bye week to think about how they've lost 2 out of 3 after a 3-0 start.
Now THAT looked like the Patriots. Well, sort of. Tom Brady usually doesn't get sacked 6 times like Matt Cassel did, and they didn't break any long pass plays, but the outcome was familiar, a win by 5 TDs. The Broncos look like they're totally disintegrating now. Sammy Morris and something named Benjarvus Green-Ellis combined for 203 rushing yards against them. All you need to do to beat the Broncos by 20 is just run it every time. They are completely powerless to stop it.
Final- Patriots 41, Broncos 7
Fantasy Heroes: Matt Cassel QB NE 25 pts, Sammy Morris RB NE 19 pts; Benjarvus Green Ellis RB NE 12 pts; Randy Moss WR NE 18 pts; Wes Welker WR NE 12 pts