THINGS I LEARNED THIS WEEKEND (from watching sports) – WEEK TWO

18Sep12

I received such a great response from this last week (see THINGS I LEARNED THIS WEEKEND (from watching sports), dated 9/10/12), that I decided to make it a regular post.

So without any further ado…..

1)      Okay, maybe ‘genius’ was going a bit too far!

Last week I was singing the praises for the Jets Head Coach, proclaiming him a genius for fooling everyone for nearly six months into believing the Jets to be inept, impotent, or simply a terrible football team.  He then proceeded to pound the Buffalo Bills into submission with relative ease in week one.

After week two, it has become apparent that either the Pittsburgh Steelers are legitimate genius killers, or I was wrong about the whole genius thing.

I’m guessing I was wrong!  I’m also guessing that, when playing against good football teams, the Jets will more closely resemble the pre-season version of their team and not the week one version.

2)      Replacement referees are just plain awful!

Did you watch any NFL games last weekend?  You did?  Then I don’t think I need to say any more!

3)      Steve Young was right.  The NFL doesn’t care that the replacement referees suck!

Again I ask, did you watch any NFL games last weekend?  Will you be watching any NFL games next weekend?  How about the week after that?

Were your answers yes, yes and yes?  Then why should the NFL leadership care about how terrible the current batch of officials are.

If the league is not losing any revenue by allowing these referee wannabes to call the games, why should they be in a hurry to settle their dispute with the real referees?

Okay, so it would show the fans (and the players and coaches and owners) that they are truly looking out for the players (and the fans and coaches and owners).  But is that really that important when they are making as much money putting out an inferior product?

Okay, so I’m being sarcastic.  Of course it matters.  Just like any other product (yes, the NFL is a product), if the quality remains lower than expected, eventually the customer base will dwindle.

Since this is America’s favorite sport to watch, play, gamble on, etc., it might take a while for the fans to begin turning their collective backs on the game.  But it will happen!

The NFL leadership can avoid that situation, one that would be difficult to recover from, by moving quickly to resolve this issue.  Put a legitimate offer on the table and let’s put this ugly situation behind us all.

4)      The phrase ANY GIVEN SUNDAY has never meant more than this season!

This is a phrase that is often heard in the clubhouses and locker rooms of the average and below average teams.  It is used to try to inspire the players to rise up and overachieve in order to lay claim to victories over teams that, by all rights, should blow them away.

They even made a movie with this as a title.  (I’m a big Al Pacino fan, but this movie was awful!!)

However, after the first two weeks of the 2012 season, it appears that this phrase might actually have some substance after all.  Let’s take a look:

Week One

The Dallas Cowboys win at the N.Y. Giants 24-17

The Washington Redskins win at the New Orleans Saints 40-32

The N.Y. Jets pound the Buffalo Bills 48-28 (after scoring only one TD in the entire preseason)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Carolina Panthers 16-10

The San Francisco 49ers win at the Green Bay Packers 30-22 (okay, not so much)

The Philadelphia Eagles struggle mightily at Cleveland before beating the Browns 17-16

The Detroit Lions nearly lose to the visiting Rams of St. Louis, winning 27-23

Week Two

The N.Y. Giants have to come from way back, scoring 25 points in the 4th quarter, to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 41-34

The Philadelphia Eagles try their hardest to give the game away to the visiting Baltimore Ravens, coming back for a 24-23 victory

The Carolina Panthers beat the New Orleans Saints 35-27

The Arizona Cardinals go to Foxboro and beat the New England Patriots 20-18

The Indianapolis Colts hold off the Minnesota Vikings 23-20

The St. Louis Rams come back to beat the Washington Redskins 31-28

The Seattle Seahawks pound the Dallas Cowboys 27-7

The six (6) undefeated teams include Arizona, San Francisco, Atlanta, Philadelphia, San Diego and Houston.

The six (6) 0-2 teams include New Orleans, Tennessee, Cleveland, Kansas City, Oakland and Jacksonville.

All other teams are 1-1.

5)      Too much has been made of Tampa Bay’s attempt to create a fumble while Eli was taking a knee!

Seriously, I have heard people on both sides of this argument going nuts, nearly to the point of violence, about this incident.  I don’t get it.

One side claims that there is an unwritten rule that when one team decides to take a knee, the defense is supposed to say ”okay, we’ll just stand here”, while the offensive team runs the clock out.  If that were the case, wouldn’t timeouts being called by the defensive unit also be considered poor sportsmanship?

If you decide to have your quarterback take a knee, here’s a suggestion…have the offensive lineman BLOCK!

Let’s compare this to a similar situation in a less violent sport – baseball.  When a decision has been made to intentionally walk a batter, the catcher will stand up and stick his arm out to the opposite batter’s box from where the batter is standing.  The idea is to let everyone know that the pitcher is going to throw the ball so far outside that the hitter cannot reach it.

What happens if the pitcher screws up and throws the ball too close to the plate?  Is there an unwritten rule that the batter is not to swing at it?  NO!  It becomes a perfect opportunity for the batter to knock it out of the park or, at the very least, get an unexpected base hit because the fielders will most likely not be expecting it.

This ‘taking a knee’ is no different.  If a fumble is caused because the offensive players have become too relaxed, then shame on the offensive players!  Quit your sniveling and do your job!!

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