Tag Archives: New York Jets

Roger Goodell Wants You To Be A New York Jets Fan

roger goodell jdub ny jets

Der Kommissar with J-Dub, who is doing his patriotic best to help the NFL.

This post is all about questions, not the least of which is why the hell does Roger Goodell care which team I support? The answer to that is a bit more complex than you might think, and to get you there means seeing a few more questions.

How do we know Kommissar Goodell wants you to be a New York Jets fan? Why else are the New York Jets on national television 3 times in this upcoming season? Because Kommissar Goodell wants you to be a New York Jets fan.  Maybe he doesn’t care specifically about you, but there’s really no doubting the NFL wants to give the Jets as much exposure as they can.

Why does the NFL want to expose the Jets as much as they can to a national audience? The magic word is “television.”  To be specific, this is about the numbers of people watching the NFL on television. The dirty little secret is the NFL is rapidly approaching maximum capacity for television viewership, which is exactly why Kommissar Goodell and the rest of the NFL Politburo are constantly beating the bushes for ways to grow the NFL’s television market. This is why we keep seeing silliness like games in foreign countries and the expansion of Thursday Night Football. Continue reading →

Why Rex Ryan Should Be AFC Coach of the Year

Rex Ryan

After the New York Jets beat the Miami Dolphins 20-7 to end their season, owner Woody Johnson announced that Rex Ryan would be the Jets’ head coach next year. Then, he backed that up by inking Ryan to a multi-year extension. Finally, the Jets’ make a smart move.

Yes, I understand that Ryan can be a bit of a blow-hard, but he is one of the best coaches in the NFL, and this year’s performance proves it.  Every NFL pundit from the blow-dries at ESPN to myself and Ryan Meehan on Sports Blog Movement had the Jets written of as nothing more than a runaway train crashing into a burning mound of tires, all to a Nickelback soundtrack. We’re talking  about a disaster of epic proportions.  It seemed like such an easy bet; all the signs were there.  This team was thinner on talent than an Ethiopian swimsuit model with a six-foot tapeworm, they were banking on a rookie quarterback, all of which made Ryan’s future seem as certain as hitting the trifecta at the dog track.

But instead of being the NFL doormat as we all expected, the Jets finished the season at a respectable 8-8, and were in the play-off conversation deep into December.  Out of those eight wins, three were over play-off teams: Philadelphia, New England, and New Orleans. Even after the Jets were bounced from play-off contention, Ryan found a way to get his team to keep playing. In the last two week of the season, the Jets played harder than a lot of teams whose seasons still had hope; the Cowboys spring to mind.

What Ryan did with the Jets is to be commended. He is the clear choice for the AFC Coach of the Year. Even if you don’t buy the case based on what I’ve already mentioned, there is one argument that can’t be refuted. It’s based on the process of elimination.

Take any other AFC coach you deem worthy. To illustrate my point, I’ll start at the top any possible list and work my way down.

  • John Fox – Sure, he’s led the Broncos to the Super Bowl, but they were expected to be there. Not to mention, he’s got a Hall-of-Fame quarterback.
  • Bill Belichick – He took a perennial play-off contender deep into the play-offs, and he’s another guy with a quarterback soon to be getting his mail in Canton.  Granted, Belichick deserves a shit-load of credit for getting all he could out of an aging and injury-depleted roster, but the fact remains he opened with a far better hand than Ryan.
  • Andy Reid –  Here’s a guy who took an underperforming team loaded with Pro Bowl talent, and got them to underperform at an even higher level.  Say what you will , but the fact is this team pissed a trip to the Super Bowl down it’s leg, and has nobody to blame but themselves.
  • Chuck Pagano – If the Colts could have managed just one play-off win, I’m probably not writing this article. Don’t even try to tell me the world wouldn’t love to find another cancer survivor to love now that all those yellow-bracelet-wearing LiveStrong types got butt-needle-fucked by Lance Armstrong.  Not to mention, Andrew Luck is showing early, disturbing signs of an ability to be inconsistent in a world where the streets to success are paved with consistency.

andrew luck and tom brady meme

  • Marvin Lewis – BWWWWWAAAHHHHHHHAHHHHHHAAAAHHHH!!!!!!!! (deep, lung re-loading gasp) BWWWWWAAAHHHHHHHAHHHHHHAAAAHHHH!!!!!!!!
  • Mike McCoy – This is the best alternative if you just can’t bring yourself to give the award to Ryan. McCoy managed to break a formerly unpenetrable barrier; he managed to get a team to not suck in the season immediately after the end of it’s  Norv Turner era. Just ask the Raiders or the Redskins how huge that is.

When you look at the race for AFC Coach of the Year in those terms, Ryan becomes the clear choice.  Sure, McCoy got his team into the play-offs, but then again, he had a top-flight quarterback and far more talent to work with than did Sexy Rexy.  The Jets shocked everyone by finishing the season with eight wins, and the main reason that happened was Ryan. Simply stated, there was no better coaching performance in the AFC.

Today’s “No Kidding” Moment: Former New York Jets’ GM Regrets Extending Mark Sanchez’s Contract

mark sanchez buttfumble

Let’s just cut through the crap here. I have no idea what the Jets were thinking last off-season, but it is clear it will take years to get out from under the mess they’ve created.  In order to understand this, we need to do a Sgt. Joe Friday-style breakdown of the facts involved in this catastrophe.

FACT: Last March, the New York Jets’ general manager Mike Tannenbaum thought Mark Sanchez was their quarterback of the future.

FACT: This was after the Jets traded for Tim Tebow, which was Tannebaum’s reponsse to Rex Ryan’s request for help at the quarterback position.

FACT: Tannebaum gave Sanchez an extension, making his contract worth more than $58 million over five years. This was after the Jets committed to at least $2 million per year (which could escalate with incentive clauses) with Tebow. That means the Jets are currently paying  in the neighborhood of $14 million dollars per year for quarterbacks they are desperate to unload on somebody. That’s number gets even more painful when you look at guys who are getting paid the same or less than the roughly $12 million the Jets are paying for Sanchez. Just for starters, look at the next six guys in terms of salary…

Continue reading →

Guest Column: Jim Rockford on How and Why To Tell The Difference Between Jets and Giants Fans

jim rockford on phoneEditor’s Note: Mr. Rockford is a private detective based in Malibu, California. We here at Dubsism have retained Mr. Rockford at his standard rate of two hundred dollars a day plus expenses to investigate matters of crime and other general shadiness in the world of sports, then report back to us when needed. If you would like to contact Mr. Rockford, at the tone, leave your name and number and he’ll get back to you

Have you seen the ESPN commercial that feature the two English soccer fans that have no idea they are indistinguishable? After you’ve seen that commercial, you may not realize that situation exists right here in America.

Look at a map of the greater New York/New Jersey area. Pinpoint MetLife Stadium, it is right next to the Meadowlands Race Track, “Meadowlands” being a polite euphemism for “Dismal Jersey Swamp.” Draw a 50-mile circle around it, and it is the Jets and Giants fans who live within this zone I’m talking about. I know one of the contributors to Sports Blog Movement is a Giants fans who lives somewhere in the Midwest; I’m sure his life is already some soulless vortex of suck, so it’s important he knows I’m not talking about him.

So, if you were born within the 50-mile zone of exclusion, you were raised either a Jets or Giants fan.  So, how can you tell the difference? In a word, you can’t, because to the untrained eye, like those soccer fans in that commercial they are the same. But unlike those soccer fans, they will change their colors depending on which team doesn’t currently suck.  In 2007, their world turned blue based on one piece of blind luck from Eli Manning and that guy who could catch with his forehead. A year later, they all turned green when the Giants were nowhere to be found in January and Rex Ryan found a way to get to back-to-back AFC Championship games with another shit-heap of a quarterback. Last year, the NY/NJ football color pendulum swung back to blue because the New England Patriots are bigger gag artists than a runaway at her first porn audition.

That’s why now is the time to learn the subtle differences present in this seemingly infernally similar group of football derelicts; neither of these teams are in the play-offs so our January will for once be free of their mouthbreather fans. Seriously, the Jets/Giants fans I’m talking about are the most horrible people imaginable. They are worse than vegetarians and Patriot fans combined. One of the advantages of living in a city without an NFL franchise means these assholes aren’t coming here for road games.

But let’s talk about their home games. There more than just the fact they share a stadium that from the outside resembles the world’s largest parking garage. MetLife Stadium rises like a concrete sarcophagus out of the Jersey swamp, but it is in that football hell hole where you can start to see the differences between Giants and Jets fans.

Continue reading →

Tebow-Mania, Part II: Five More Questions About Tim Tebow

Back in January, Drew Magary from Deadspin posed five hypothetical questions about Tim Tebow.  These questions were so interesting they required a Dubsism response.  Now that Tebow continues to be an NFL version of a lighting rod in cleats, perhaps it is time to ask a few more questions that you simply won’t find anywhere else.

1) Why is Tim Tebow the biggest star in the NFL?

First of all, make no mistake that he is the biggest star in the league. That doesn’t mean he is the best player; as it stands now, he’s far from it.  In America we have created a rule of celebrity I’m dubbing the Tebow/Kardashian Postulate. This rule states that one no longers needs merit or talent anymore to achieve mind-numbing levels of fame in this country.  Celebrity can be created entirely on the whims of the media, and this is exactly what happened with Tebow.

Face the facts.  Tebow became the biggest star in the league without having done a single thing in the NFL other than answer the phone call from the Broncos the day they made him a first-round draft pick.  ESPN was at the Tebow house, cameras at the ready.  But do you remember how everybody in that house had a Broncos cap on within 30 second of the announcement of the pick?  That didn’t happen by accident; I’ll bet you a big amount of dough that the truck which carried all that Bronco gear had the letters “ESPN” on the side of it.

 

Tebow led the league in jersey sales before he ever set foot on an NFL field.  Tebow gets entire hour-long special editions of SportsCenter dedicated strictly to him.  ESPN treats his birthday like it is a national holiday.

So, why is that? My best guess is two-fold.

  1. He’s likable guy who plays football like we would if given the chance.  None of us are “prototypical” quarterbacks either, but we can easily look like a great backyard football quarterback, especially if that game is happening after all the participants have blasted well into their second six-pack.  People love stuff with which they can identify, and more people feel they have more in common with Tim Tebow than Tom Brady.
  2. He’s polarizing. There’s is only one person I know who has no opinion on Tebow (see Question #5). Other than that, the mere mention of the name “Tebow” draws responses; people love him or they hate him. That also means he makes the ratings needle jump.

I would love to hear alternate theories; that’s why after he made Tim Tebow, God made the Comments section.

2) Why do former quarterbacks hate him so much?

Old quarterbacks are the prima donnas of the NFL;  Tebow threatens their entire belief system.  It is the John Elways and the Boomer Esiasons who helped create the “fuck it and chuck it” NFL.  It is what defnes them, and it is that model of the NFL that keeps them in fat jobs as commentators and general managers. Anybody who has even the remotest shot at success by doing anything other than filling the skies with football is a not only a religious heretic who must be burned at the stake, but he is screwing with how these gymnasts in shoulder pads collect paychecks.

Neither John Elway or McKayla Maroney are amused.

3) What happens if Tim Tebow suddenly doesn’t suck?

Here’s where you have to pry your brain out of the box…look past what you see now and ask what if Tebow just hasn’t found his coaching muse yet. Tom Brady was destined to be a career bench-jockey until he found his way onto the field for Bill Belichick.  Hall-of-Famers like Len Dawson, Johnny Unitas, and Brett Farve all got dumped by their first teams, then blossomed in a new system.  Even guys like Terry Bradshaw and John Elway looked like complete boobs in their first few seasons.

Don’t worry, I’m not saying that muse is going to be Rex Ryan. But the question remains: What happens if Tebow finds his muse; what happens if Tebow winds up in a place willing to build an offense around him and (gasp) it succeeds?

If we are ever able legitimately to call Tebow a Super Bowl winning quarterback, several things will happen by the time he gets to Disney World.

There will be an earthquake caused by the weight of a big chunk of the Tebow-haters flip-flopping, and couch their waffles in a lot of “what I really meant to say” bullshit.  Professional microphone infecters like Colin Cowherd will be the first to spew about when they saw the first signs of Tebow’s potential after they’ve spent years calling him cat-shit in cleats.

The Tebow-haters who don’t flip will become the Taliban of NFL fans; they will become even more fervent and maniacal. Their wives will be forced to wear burkas made of old Boomer Esiason jerseys  and any mention of Tebow will result in being strapped to a tree and lashed with an extension cord.

If you think Tebow is a media darling now, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. The minute Tebow touches the Lombardi Trophy, his media stock will get higher than Lindsey Lohan at a Snoop Dogg house party.  The Tebow-gasm will hit epic proportions; for three solid months there will be a Tebow tsunami which will overwhelm us with personal appearances and an advertising blitz unlike anything we’ve ever seen.  Forget about Wheaties boxes; Tebow’s face will be on everything from sneakers to shotguns, and there will be no stopping it. .

If the resultant Tebow-gasm doesn’t explode the skulls of the remaining haters, the fact that a Super Bowl winning Tebow-centric offensive approach will undoubtedly spawn an explosion of imitators.  The Tebow-haters will be so close to their bulged-out eyes in Tebow-wannabes they may in fact start lining those Esiason burkas with TNT.  Not to mention, can you imagine what happens to the Brady/Manning knob-slobbing fantasy football geeks when a wave of Triple-Option/Single-Wing/Leather Helmet offenses washes across the NFL?

4) How long can Tebow stay in the NFL as a side-show attraction?

How many times have you heard “Tebow is just not an NFL quarterback?” It would be more correct to say that as it stands now, he isn’t a good NFL quarterback.  But that is also a measure of the “right here, right now” version of the NFL. This makes the question this: How long can the media hype last if Tebow stops being a play-off quarterback? The Chicago Cubs can be terrible and keep fans; NFL quarterbacks are not accorded the same luxury.  Right now, Curtis Painter doesn’t get hand jobs form ESPN for his birthday…how long can Tebow keep getting them with a 46% completion percentage?

5) Why does Mrs. Dubsism not give a shit about Tim Tebow?

It’s true…Mrs. Dubsism is the one football fan in America who couldn’t care less about Tebow.  In bullet point form, here’s why she will change the channel at the first mention of “Timmy Rah-Rah.”

  • Other than the fact he is charismatic, what’s he ever done in the NFL to deserve the attention?

Yeah, she’s pretty much hitting the newly-dubbed Tebow/Kardashian rule. According to her, while he may have gotten the Broncos into the play-offs, and he may have even gotten them a miracle win against Pittsburgh, those were team accomplishments, not individual ones.  It was the Bronco defense that kept that team close enough for the last-minute Timmy miracle. Look what happened when that play-off run died a horrible death in New England.

  • He doesn’t play for her team.

If Tebow were a New Orleans Saint, I’d probably have to take out a contract on him. Mrs. Dubsism loves the Saints, which is why if I ever said anything bad about Drew Brees (oh, and she’s also a Purdue alum..) there would be a bounty out on my ass faster than you could send Sean Payton to the ATM.  If you were to replace Brees with Saint Tebow, I’d probably need to have him killed because I couldn’t stand hearing about him anymore.

  • Tim Tebow is the photo-negative of J-Dub.
  1. He’s super-white
  2. He’s uber-religious
  3. He’s a quarterback
  4. He never has profanity-filled tirades

To be fair, she also says that I have one thing in common with Tebow.  Mrs. Dubsism thinks we both may be megalomaniacs, albeit in a different sense.  She thinks Tebow may have a bit of a “God” complex, whereas she believes my mania is more of a “Bryant Gumbel meets Hitler” thing.

The Bottom Line:

Here’s the truth as it exists right now.  Rex Ryan needs to take a shot at being Tebow’s muse.  Tim Tebow is the best shot the New York Jets have to win, not so much because of Tebow, but because Mark Sanchez is irrelevant. If you doubt that, consider the fact that the Jets got to the AFC championship game in each of Sanchez’s first two years. During that time, he had a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 19 to 33. In his third season, Sanchez improved to a respectable 26 touchdowns to 18 picks and the Jets didn’t get into the playoffs.

This means the Jets’ fortunes revolve around the defense and running game. The Jets wouldn’t win with a “prototypical” quarterback, the team isn’t built for that.  A Rex Ryan-era  Jets quarterback needs to a) keep the defense off the field when needed, b) usually be moving the chains by whichever means necessary, and c) don’t give the ball away.

While neither Tebow or Sanchez are likely to become that “prototypical NFL quarterback;” Tebow because he throws like a Special Olympian chucking a wet Nerf Ball, and Sanchez because we’ve seen what he’s got, and it isn’t anything past mediocre, it is Tebow’s skill set that fits the Jets better than anything Sanchez has to offer.

No matter what, the Jets’ offense is as likely to be as underwhelming in 2012 as it was in 2011.  As odd as it may sound, that’s exactly why Tebow is the better fit.  Regardless of whether or not he ever learns that throwing a football does not require the same motion as heaving a shot put, he will likely always be unconventional, always be limited as a passer, and always be someone who needs to have a team tailored to him.

As much as I love Rex Ryan, there’s really no denying he is also Rex Ryan is also unconventional, limited as an offensive coach, and need to tailor his teams around his style.  He’s also out of time; he needs to win in New York now.  Like it or not, Tebow is his best shot.

Rex Ryan and Tim Tebow: The Introduction

Be warned the following post is Rated “R” largely because it includes an uncensored Rex Ryan…

The other day, the New York Jets introduced their new media sensation to the New York press. While that press conference was widely covered, the introduction between Tim Tebow and Jets coach Rex Ryan was kept largely under wraps.  Until now.

Lets’ be honest…nobody really knows how this relationship is going to play out in the future, but we do know that you really couldn’t find two more divergent personalities. However, thanks to our vast network of spies, we here at Dubsism did manage to obtain a transcript of the first meeting of the two men who promise to dominate the New York football headlines for the immediate future.

TT: (knocks on office door) Coach Ryan, are you in here?

RR: What the fuck is up, kid? Come on in. (throws Tebow a beer) Have a brewski, kid!

TT: Uh, thanks Coach, but I don’t…

RR: (interrupts) Don’t you shit me now, boy! I ain’t never met a catholic yet who didn’t like to get good an’ fucked up. Now sit your ass down and have a beer with your new coach.

TT: (stares uncomfortably at the beer) But I’m not catholic, Sir. I’m a Christian.

RR: What the fuck ever. So, what can I do for you?

TT: Well, Sir…

RR: (interrupts) First of all, you’re gonna have to knock off that “Sir” bullshit. Call me either “Rex” or “Coach.”

TT: OK…well, Sir…er, I mean Coach Rex, I just thought I would come by, introduce myself, and maybe get a playbook.

RR: Well, don’t worry about the playbook quite yet. We really don’t quite know what the hell we are going to do yet.

TT: Whatever you say, Coach.  I will do whatever the team needs.

RR: (cracks another beer) No, you’ll do whatever the fuck I tell you. You gonna drink that beer or are you waiting until you change your tampon?

TT: But, Coach, I tried to tell you that I don’t drink.

RR: (Leans forward in his chair) I told you to drink that fuckin’ beer.  Now drink it.

TT: (cracks beer, pretends to take a sip) Uhhh, this stuff smells like Kyle Orton.

RR: That’s better. Now let me tell you what I’m thinking here. People like you, kid, and that’s gonna be a big help when they figure out the team isn’t any good.  I can’t figure out why they re-signed that pile of monkey nuts Sanchez. God, he sucks (facepalm).  Anyway, eventually I want you to do here what you did in Denver. I don’t have the first fuckin’ clue how you did that, but I will tell you this. Your relationship with the media and your off-field activities will be as important as what you do on the fuckin’ field.

TT: I’m not sure I understand what you mean, Coach…

RR: Listen here, Opie.  You could get away with selling that “Charlie Church” routine out there in Denver, Punksylvania, but here in New York, the media is always going to be looking for cracks in your story, and somebody is eventually going to get some fuckin’ dirt on you. Nothing will kill you faster than getting caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy. You don’t like feet by any chance, do you?

TT: Excuse me, Coach?

RR: Never mind. The point is that eventually your little altar boy routine is going to get blown up.

TT: But it’s not a “routine,” Coach.

RR: Yeah. Of course it isn’t, kid. And I can see my own dick without putting a mirror on the floor (chuckles).

TT: Honest, Coach. I’m not pretending for anything. I really believe in…

RR: (interrupts) Yeah, yeah, yeah…what the fuck ever. Look kid, just understand that here there will be tons of skanks who would love to be on the front page for suckin’ your guts out through the end of your dick. All it takes is one to fuck this whole thing up.

TT: That won’t be a problem, Coach.

RR: It better not be, or else this will happen to you  (leans toward the door in his chair). HEY SANCHEZ!!! GET YOUR COCK-LOVING ASS IN HERE!!!  NOW!!! (Sanchez enters the room in a Pulp Fiction-type “Gimp” outfit, complete with shock-collar)

RR: This here’s the deal, boy (pulls a remote control out of his desk). It’s one thing to be a shitty quarterback, hell, this league is full of them. But it’s another to be a shitty quarterback who is a liability off the field.  See what he’s wearing? The outfit is all because this jerk-off got caught porking a 17-year old last year. So now, he gets to wear the “Suit of Shame” (presses button, at which time Sanchez becomes a screaming electro-convulsive pile of uncontrolled bodily functions).  Some people just have to learn the hard way (looks down at Sanchez). Don’t they, Dipshit?

Sanchez: (screams muffled by leather zipper mask)

TT: (horrified, drops beer) Oh, my…I mean, I understand, Coach.

RR: You goddamn well better, kid. You’re here because Electro-Nuts down there doesn’t seem to get the message . I’d really hate to have to pump 50,000 volts through your Holy Trinity (hits button again).

Sanchez: (screams muffled by leather zipper mask)

What We Learned: The NFL Regular Season

1) Andy Reid and Rex Ryan are just photo-negatives of each other

Andy Reid is quiet and studious. Rex Ryan is loud and brash. And they’ve both lost their locker rooms.

It doesn’t matter where the shit-talking came from, there was far too much of it.  While the media didn’t do Reid and the Eagles any favors with that “Dream Team” bullshit, they fell victim to believing it largely because Reid failed to keep the Eagles grounded in reality.

With the Jets, all the shit-talking came from the Jets themselves.  The word is starting to get out that Rex Ryan is all talk that he can’t back up. With all the crap that team spewed about how they were the team to beat, they ended up in the same place as the Eagles: 8-8 and playing golf in January.

Even if you don’t think their respective team quit on them, they certainly had pain-in-the ass wide receivers who did. Some people say Santonio Holmes may have quit on his team late in the last game against the Dolphins. Those people clearly haven’t been watching Jets football; Holmes has been a non-factor for quite some time. In Philadelphia, the obvious problem child was DeSean Jackson, or as I like to call him “Punk Bitch Vagina Face.”

This is what happens when you can't back up your smack-talk.

2) Defense apparently is now illegal

Consider the following: this season saw 2 quarterback s with 5,000 passing yards, 8 more with over 4,000 (including rookie Cam Newton), and 7 more mediocre-to-shitty ones with over 3,000 (Ryan Fitzpatrick, Joe Flacco, Josh Freeman, Matt Hasselbeck, Mark Sanchez, Michael Vick, Rex Grossman, Alex Smith, and Tarvaris Jackson –  and that doesn’t include the 3K season posted by rookie Andy Dalton).

3) Bill Polian somehow went blind

The former vice chairman of the Indianapolis Colts, the man who built that franchise around Peyton Manning, apparently didn’t see the infrastructure collapsing. He thinks the reason he got fired was for not having a back-up for Peyton Manning.

Bill, the reason you got fired was because the team got old, can’t run, and can’t play defense. Manning didn’t affect any of that. Since football is the ultimate team sport, there is no way  team should be so defined by a single player that it literally melts away the second that player is missing.

4) The NFL has some franchises that are in trouble

Stop and think about this: Where would the franchises in Jacksonville, Buffalo, Minnesota, New Orleans, San Diego and St. Louis be if the NFL did not do revenue-sharing? Discuss amongst yourselves.

5) The “Dream Team” moniker is a kiss of death

What do you do with a season that started with such promise, delivered none of it, but yet ended on a positive note? In Philadelphia, the standard operating procedure is “find someone to blame.”

Blaming Andy Reid is easy. The irony is that the same media which points a collective finger at the coach used that same finger to type all the bullshit hype that destroyed this team.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not ascribing the bullshit season the Eagles had exclusively on the crap the media spewed, but they own a part of it. Inasmuch as the team owns not meeting expectations, it was the media who set those unrealistic expectations in the first place.

Once the label “Dream Team” was hung around the organization, they were dead.

What We Learned From This Weekend in Football 11/19/2011

1) This Year, the Entire BCS Argument is Moot

Name a team outside of the SEC that can beat Alabama, LSU, or Arkansas…I’m waiting…

2) We Sort Of Forgot About Miami

University of Miami president Donna Shalala being presented a check by Nevin Shapiro.

I think we all know why the scandal that gripped Hurricane football dropped off our collective radars. But now,for some reason, the University of Miami has decided to at least give the appearance of trying to do the right thing.

Despite qualifying with Saturday’s win over South Florida, Miami has made the decision to remove themselves from bowl consideration this season in response to the ongoing NCAA inquiry into the Nevin Shapiro allegations. The school has informed both the NCAA and the ACC of its decision.

“We understand and share the disappointment that our student-athletes, coaches, staff, supporters and fans are feeling but after lengthy discussions among University leaders, athletic administrators and outside counsel, it is a necessary step for our University. The University of Miami has not self-imposed any other penalties. “

Athletic Director Shawin Eichorst and head coach Al Golden addressed the decision briefly in a teleconference on Sunday afternoon. Eichorst informed Golden of the school’s decision early Sunday afternoon, and further meetings with the coaches and players followed.

Naturally, the fact that they were headed for the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl had absolutely nothing to do with this decision.

3) Teams we can start the “Death Watch” on right now

San Diego Chargers

It’s not just the five straight losses, its they way they’ve lost them.  They have no offensive line. They are without Malcolm Floyd and Shawn Phillips. They rely entire too much on Philip Rivers since they have a marginal running game, and there is the matter of the Human Handicap, otherwise known as Norv Turner. Turner could screw up a grilled cheese sandwich, and the Chargers will never win as long as he is on their sideline.

Washington Redskins

Like the Chargers, it’s not just the six straight losses, it’s the way they’ve lost them.  Nobody defines “inconsistent quarterback” play like the Redskins; they got the “good” Rex Grossman against the Cowboys and still lost.  In fact, despite the sideline weakness present in Mike “I never won shit without a guy named Elway” Shanahan, you really can’t fault the offense.  While the Redskins defensive line has proven to be improved and often more physical than the offensive lines they’ve faced, the back seven gives up far too much on pass plays.

New York Jets

It’s official…I’m off the Mark Sanchez band-wagon. This guy sucks swamp-water. This guy saves his job once every six games or so. This guy has to go.

Look at the pattern. When the Jets were on a three-game skid last month, Sanchez led them to a win over then-winless Miami. This is just like 2009, when the  Jets came back from a 4-6 record to make the playoffs at 9-7.

Now, Jets fans are stuck hoping history repeats itself again. This time, the Jets are 5-5 after dropping their and a suddenly-remembers-they-are-supposed-t0-be-lousy Buffalo team is coming to town. But none of that accounts for the dirty Sanchez secret.

Sanchez has chucked pick-sixes in each of the last two games. He’s tossed three total this season.  He also has lost two fumbles that were returned for touchdowns and had an interception returned to the 1 by Dallas on opening night, and the Cowboys scored a touchdown two plays later. That’s 42 points the Jets have allowed, almost all because of Sanchez.

To be fair, the Jets offensive line isn’t helping matters.  They’ve reverted to their early-season ineptitude. They allowed four sacks on opening night 11 in the first four games.  Sanchez has been dropped eight times in the last two games.

4) Teams I Want To Like, But…

Chicago Bears

The Bears are the photo negative of the Chargers. The Bears have won five straight.  They don’t win pretty and they depend on the running game. But when do they get Jay Cutler back?

The Bears’ Achilles’ heel on defense is the deep pass. If you can set it up, you can  you can hurt the Bears on deep passes, something that will be a test for them when they play Oakland this week. But after that, the Bears get Kansas City, Denver and Seattle. In fact, after Oakland, they won’t face a team with a passing game to speak of until week 16 with the Packers.

Oakland Raiders

Carson Palmer and Michael Bush might just be what the Raiders needed.  Palmer has yet to be dominant, but he is efficient, doesn’t make mistakes, and gives the Raiders the ability to move the ball against anybody.   Michael Bush can be flat out dominant with his bruising running style.  Plus, all they have to do to make the playoffs is win the AFC West.  But can they do it?  They’ve already lost to the Broncos once.

5) …And in what promises to be an on-going saga…

That whole bit about the Raiders brings us to the ever-present Tim Tebow story. His heroics against the Jets only serve as another chapter in what I fear may be a story that won’t be ending for a while. You can say all you wan’t about how he is a “terrible” quarterback…don’t look now, but this guy is winning games, and with every win, he gets more fans. If Tebow isn’t careful, he’s going to be one of the biggest stars in the league because his appeal transcends football.  Watch it it happen if the Broncos make the play-offs.

Don’t scoff at that thought. Like I said about the Raiders, all that is required to do it is to win the AFC West, and the Tebow-led Broncos have already bested the Raiders. The Broncos would be in the “Teams I want to like, but…” category, but my “but” on the Broncos is more of a belief question.  Do I believe that Tebow’s winning ways are due to him, or due to the fact nobody in the NFL has seen an option offense in 40 years?

The Dubsism 2011 Pre-Season NFL Power Rankings

As we find ourselves on the verge of another NFL season, it is time for the degenerate gambler in me to preview the carnage. Let’s face it, the NFL is comprised of  three classes: Really Good, Mediocre, and Lousy.  This means NFL predictions are pretty easy to get reasonably correct. For example, the online sports book experts find it easy to predict the AFC East standings each year. As long as quarterback Tom Brady is playing for head coach Bill Belichick in New England, that will be your division favorite. Another point that should be obvious is that if you are reading this article and expecting anything more clever than a sports book expert, maybe you shouldn’t be gambling in the first place.

Having said that, here’s how we see these teams come January (playoff teams noted in green).

Rankings by Division

AFC East

The Patriots looked invincible last season until the New York Jets found their Achilles’ heel. Once you take away the Patriots running game, their offense suddenly can’t create plays. However, the Pats’ seem to have addressed that by solidifying the offensive line.  Otherwise, the Patriots needed to make two major changes;  they needed help in the defensive secondary, and they needed size in the running game. Danny Woodhead is a great story, but he’s a munchkin, and teams had him figured out by the playoffs. Brandon Meriwether is a fraud, and has been for a while. This is why the Patriots drafted defensive back Ras-I Dowling and running back Shane Vereen. When you stop to consider the Patriots’ past success at player scouting and development (don’t make me break out the Tom Brady cliché yet again), it is safe to assume that the Patriots solved their problems.

Q: Who knew this looked a future Hall-of-Famer? A: Bill Belichick.

But don’t sleep on the Jets.  The Jets get the second spot in the AFC East by default; the Bills and Dolphins are both in that “Lousy” category. The Jets season hinges on two things: the defense has to live up to expectations by being the dominant unit it should be, and Mark Sanchez has to not suck. Frankly, it is time for Sanchez to prove he is worthy of the star status he has been accorded. If he finally shows us he is the “San-chise,” the sky is the limit for the Jets. If not, expect another playoff loss.

  1. New England Patriots
  2. New York Jets
  3. Miami Dolphins
  4. Buffalo Bills

AFC North

The Ravens defense used to be radioactive to offenses, but like all radioactive elements, eventually they pass their half-life and the decay becomes noticeable. This may not be the year that happens, but it is getting more likely with time. If the Ravens are going to make a move and snatch this division from the Steelers, that defense needs to stay healthy and give us one more season of nuclear-powered destruction. Anything short of that, and we may very well be seeing those damn Terrible Towels deep into the playoffs.

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers
  2. Baltimore Ravens
  3. Cleveland Browns
  4. Cincinnati Bengals

AFC South

This division goes to the Texans by default. Tennessee has a new head coach, and I have no faith that Matt Hasselbeck is the cure to all that ailed the Titans. Jacksonville is just plain bad, and I can’t sell on the Colts fast enough. If you saw Indianapolis in the pre-season, you saw the lack of Peyton Manning is only one problem this team has. The offensive line couldn’t block a hat, the defense acts more like the express lane at the toll-booth, and head coach Jim Caldwell couldn’t find his balls with both hands. However, in all fairness, it’s not like the Texans have ever shown they know where their balls are either; they’ve never once showed they have what it takes to win.

  1. Houston Texans
  2. Tennessee Titans
  3. Indianapolis Colts
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars

AFC West

Here’s another default situation that just drives me nuts. Every year, I get sucked in by the Chargers, only to watch them underperform. I honestly wish I could say with confidence San Diego can’t win this division, but who else can? The Raiders didn’t lose a division game last year, but they also have a new head coach, question marks all over the roster, and the usual Raider drama. The Chiefs showed what they were in that seal-clubbing they took at the hands of the Ravens in the playoff last season, and they didn’t get better since then. Do I even need to mention the Denver Tebows?

  1. San Diego Chargers
  2. Oakland Raiders
  3. Kansas City Chiefs
  4. Denver Broncos

NFC East

We could call this division the NFC Over-Rated. I swear to god, the next person who refers to the Eagles as “dream team” will get kicked in the neck (I say this as a lifelong Eagles fan). They have some serious issues on the offensive line, and I will give you even money Michael Vick proves to be a bust on that big contract he just got. Don’t forget he got the crap beaten out of him last season and lost five games due to injury, plus he got progressively worse as the season went on. Not to mention he is age-wise already north of 30, and I don’t know of too many athletes that aged like wine; running quarterbacks age like milk.

Then there’s the Cowboys. To buy this team, I need to do two things that make me nervous. First, I have to buy Tony Romo as a quarterback who can win a game that means something; that’s compounded by the fact he plays behind an offensive line that at times can look like five matadors in silver and blue. Secondly, I need to see head coach Jason Garrett take this team out of the gate as “the man;” last year I suspect he got a bump in performance out of that team just for not being fat Bob Newhart Wade Phillips.

As far as the Giants are concerned…well, let’s just say the difference between Tony Romo and Eli Manning is pure, uncut luck. Without one David Tyree catch against his helmet as the best possible time, we are likely dogging the drunken, non-misshapen-headed Manning as badly as we dog Romo now. Besides, that one catch lengthens the time before I will see Tom Coughlin standing by a freeway on-ramp holding a sign which says “will be an asshole for food.”

One of these quarterbacks is probably not a homosexual. The other is Eli Manning.

The only thing for sure about this division is that the Redskins will be a vortex of inter-galactic suckittude; the kind that generates such a gravitational pull it threatens to collapse under its own mass.

  1. Philadelphia Eagles
  2. New York Giants
  3. Dallas Cowboys
  4. Washington Redskins

NFC North

The Packers return better as defending champs not because they added tons of talent in the off-season; rather because they are entering with all the talent they lost due to injury. Let’s face it, the 2010 Packers were so beat up last year they looked like the battered women’s shelter by Mike Tyson’s house. If they can learn to slip that “I’m off my Lithium again” left-hook the NFL season can throw, the Packers will prove to be more than a Buster Douglas-type one-trick pony.

Meanwhile, three hours to the south lies the enigma known as the Chicago Bears. How can a team have so many ex-head coaches on its staff (Mike Martz, Rod Marinelli, and Mike Tice) and not know that a key to a successful offense is not letting the other team turn their quarterback into lawn mulch? It is easy to beat on Jay Cutler, but’s let’s be fair, he could sue his offensive line for non-support. If there’s a guy in Chicago who should be getting called out, it’ s Lovie Smith. He’s done the least with the most talent of nearly any coach in this league, and yet his job never seems to be in danger. One can make an argument that a coach who didn’t have his head up his ass could have won two Super Bowls with the Bears during the Lovie regime, but nobody ever seems to mention that…

If Wal-Mart made a cheap, Guatemalan-made version of the New York Jets, it might just be the Detroit Lions. Let’s look at the common components:

  • A team that will likely have a bone-shattering defense
  • A team designed around a “ball-control” offense
  • A team with a young quarterback who needs to prove he’s the real deal
This will be the first year of the post-Favre debacle in Minnesota; an era that will be marked by 6-win seasons and a continued failure to understand the value of the quarterback position and the talent required to make a winner.
  1. Green Bay Packers
  2. Chicago Bears
  3. Detroit Lions
  4. Minnesota Vikings

NFC South

The NFL Lockout really was a cover story so Drew Brees could hang out with Seal Team 6 and waste some bad guys.

The Saints may very well be the most complete offense in the NFC. Drew Brees and Sean Payton make the brainiest quarterback-coach combination since Joe Montana and Bill Walsh. Not only did the running game get better simply by the subtraction of Reggie StolenHeisman-KardashianReject,  the addition of running back Mark Ingram and “I’m gonna smash you in the mouth” center Olin Kreutz, makes for a physical ground game to go with the Brees and Company Flying Circus.

Every since draft day, we’ve known the Falcons think they are “that one piece away,” and they think that piece is wide receiver Julio Jones. Honestly, I would be more concerned about the impending breakdown of running back Michael Turner; in the past few seasons he’s touched more balls than the lady who does the lottery drawings.

  1. New Orleans Saints
  2. Atlanta Falcons
  3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  4. Carolina Panthers

NFC West

Welcome to the NFC 7-9 Division, or as I like to call it, the “Somebody’s got to win it” Division. Honestly, I loved all the belly aching that went on about how a team with a losing record shouldn’t be in the playoffs despite the fact the SeaHacks won under the architecture provided, and the people who bitched the loudest about the NFL playoff system are the same ones who beat on college football for not having a playoff. Plus, it was these very same people who bitched about my solution for the college playoff issue who stole the line form the “Poll and Bowl” crowd about this being about the “best teams, not just those who win a bad division.”

That was until the SeaHacks knocked out the Saints. Then it all stopped. It really doesn’t matter, because one of these teams will be in the playoffs whether you like it or not.

  1. St. Louis Rams
  2. Arizona Cardinals
  3. San Francisco 49ers
  4. Seattle Seahawks

Overall Rankings

  1. New England Patriots
  2. Green Bay Packers
  3. Philadelphia Eagles
  4. Pittsburgh Steelers
  5. New York Jets
  6. New Orleans Saints
  7. San Diego Chargers
  8. Atlanta Falcons
  9. Baltimore Ravens
  10. New York Giants
  11. Houston Texans
  12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  13. Dallas Cowboys
  14. Chicago Bears
  15. Miami Dolphins
  16. St. Louis Rams
  17. Tennessee Titans
  18. Detroit Lions
  19. Indianapolis Colts
  20. Arizona Cardinals
  21. Oakland Raiders
  22. Cleveland Browns
  23. Kansas City Chiefs
  24. Jacksonville Jaguars
  25. Seattle Seahawks
  26. Minnesota Vikings
  27. San Francisco 49’ers
  28. Buffalo Bills
  29. Denver Broncos
  30. Cincinnati Bengals
  31. Washington Redskins
  32. Carolina Panthers

I Don’t Give A Shit What Anybody Says, I Still Love Rex Ryan

Caps and Swests, baby...

So what if the Jets lost last night.  So what if some people are saying once again the Rex Ryan is all talk. We big, sweatervest-wearing, smack-talking  guys need to stick together at all costs, and considering what Ryan has done for the Jets, sticking with him is easier than ordering an extra slice of pizza.

Sure, its easy to point at the disaster that was the first half of last night’s AFC Championship. However to do that ignores two important things. It ignores the nearly-successful comeback in the second half, and it ignores what it took to even be in that position. Most importantly, it ignores who made both those thing possible.

Rex Fucking Ryan.

At first, I had a similar reaction to last night’s loss. I had a profanity-filled tirade at such a volume that the cat still hasn’t come out from under the bed. But then I thought about where the Jets have been, and where they are are going, and then I remembered why that is all happening.

Rex Fucking Ryan.

You don’t have to love his style, and you don’t have to love his brash nature. But you have to respect what this guy has done. The Jets are a franchise which for the last two decades has oscillated between mediocre and terrible; achieving double-digit wins only four times in that spa, but suffering double-digit losses at twice that rate. Before Ryan’s arrival, the Jets had only advanced to one AFC Championship in the past two decades; after Ryan they have been in two straight.

If that isn’t enough for you, look at the path they had to follow this season. To get to the Super Bowl, this team would have had to go on the road and beat three of the most elite quarterbacks this game has to offer; Peyton Manning in Indianapolis, Tom Brady in Foxboro, and Ben Roethlisberger in Pittsburgh.  Stop and think about it…had they been successful, this accomplishment would be largely similar to the Steelers journey of five years ago when as a 6-seed they had to navigate the top three AFC seeds on their way to a Super Bowl.

So, before anybody starts criticizing Rex Ryan, take a hard look at where the Jets were before Rex Ryan arrived, and look at where they are now. So, this time the Jets couldn’t beat the last three Super Bowl winning AFC quarterbacks. But, to quote another notable big guy, Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad.

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