Posted on: November 3, 2009 2:45 am

Skins stay unbeaten during bye weeks

Despite going into the bye week with as much turmoil as any professional football franchise in the league this year, the Washington Redskins have managed to extend their unbeaten streak during bye weeks to twenty straight games.


The 20-0 record during bye weeks ties the Redskins for the best record during bye weeks in the NFL.


Controversy has surrounded the Redskins this year.  Going into the bye there were many experts who doubted whether the Redskins could stay unbeaten for the twentieth year in a row.


Despite Jim Zorn’s poor record during his tenure as a head coach, he extends his unbeaten streak to two games during the bye.  This is the first week that the Redskins have not lost since Sherm Lewis took over play calling duties from Zorn, so much of the credit should be given to his positive new influence.


Both coaches and players echoed Redskin management’s sentiments that the bye week was a week that the team could not afford to lose.  Despite a record low in team morale, the Redskins pulled together this week, the way true professionals should.


This week should undoubtedly bring the team momentum as it seeks to beat the Atlanta Falcons next weekend.


The Redskins are 11-8 following a bye week.  However their record against non division foes is much better. 


They are 7-3 against non division opponents, while only 4-5 in games against division foes.


Despite the Redskins’ consistency during the bye week, Jim Zorn has urged Redskin fans to not get too confident.  He warned reporters present at his weekly news conference on Monday that it is much harder to achieve positive results after a bye week than during it.

Category: NFL
Posted on: September 22, 2009 3:09 pm

Cause of Death: Washington Redskins!

As I was watching the Redskins play the Rams on Sunday a thought occurred to me that I hadn’t ever thought about before.


I thought about writing up a will.


Now I am fairly young, and I don’t have any money, but there are a few things that I want done in the unfortunate event of my passing.  The one thing I want made very clear is that should I die of a heart attack I want the official cause of death to be listed as The Washington Redskins.


To someone who is not a passionate sports fan that may sound rather silly.  But I’m sure many sports fans that aren’t blessed to follow great teams can empathize.


When I saw that the pre-game betting line favored the Redskins by nine and a half points I had to laugh.  If I lived near a legal gambling establishment I would have bet a large sum against them.


The Redskins play most teams very close.  Whether they are overmatched or clearly more talented the Redskins always seem to play to the opposing team’s level of talent.  Most of their games end with a seven point margin of victory or less, no matter which team wins.


I know many people who like close games.  I do too, but when it comes to my favorite teams it would be nice to have a blowout victory every once and a while.


Having my heart pound in anticipation for three and a half hours straight every week for four months can not possibly be healthy.  Therefore I want the reason for my heart attack made very clear to everyone.


There are many reasons why the Redskins always seem unable to put a team away.


One of them is their unique talent to commit costly and silly penalties at very inappropriate times.


Like a personal foul on Stephon Heyer during the game last year against the Cards that nullified a sixty yard touchdown by Devin Thomas that would have given them a two touchdown lead late in the game.


Or Casey Rabach committing back to back holding penalties on back to back touchdown plays against Dallas last year.


Or this week, when a VERY late hit on Mark Bulger by Brian Orakpo whipped away a key fumble recovery deep in Ram territory that could have helped build an early lead.


Every time the Redskins make a great play I first look for a flag and then hold my breathe until the next play is snapped and the play can no longer be challenged.  I think I have post traumatic stress disorder from watching this team.


The Redskins also have a knack for committing costly turnovers in scoring position.  In the last two games against the Rams the Redskins committed turnovers at the exact same time in the game on the exact same part of the field.


This year a Santana Moss fumble thwarted a chance to go into halftime with a lead.  Last year a Pete Kendall catch of a tipped pass lead to a fumble and an eighty yard Ram touchdown, effectively causing a fourteen point change of fortune.


Coaching decisions have also played a part in aging me well before my time.


In the Joe Gibbs era it was a strict belief in playing very conservative on offense with a lead combined with the use of prevent defense that seemed to be the reason that the Redskins could never put a team away.  Everyone is well aware of the saying that a prevent defense only prevents winning.


When Jim Zorn was hired fans hoped that the conservative strategy would be gone.  Well it has almost swung to the opposite extreme.  When faced with a fourth down decision at the end of a game Zorn has proven that he will always go for the kill shot.


I like that.  But I don’t like that EVERY SINGLE TIME!  Zorn needs to look at the flow of the game when making these decisions.


The first fourth down run I understood.  Shaun Suisham is very unreliable, and a kick from over thirty-five yards out is almost as much of a gamble as going for it.


But when you have a fourth and one at the two yard line it is a totally different situation. A nineteen yard field goal is a 95% sure thing.  If you have that good of a chance to go up by five points against a team that has produced one scoring drive all season you must take it.


The Redskins did not, and the results might have cost Zorn his game and his job if it weren’t for the stellar play of the defense.


Despite these very good reasons, the most important reason why the Washington Redskins can never win big is that the just can’t score.


They have changed coaches.  They have changed players.  They have changed offensive philosophies.  They haven’t changed the end results.  They can move the ball with ease from twenty to twenty.  But once they get inside the red zone something happens.


I don’t know if Dan Snyder broke a mirror seven years ago or if he offended a voodoo witch doctor.  All I know is that the Redskins seem to be suffering from a scoring hex.


This hex can not be blamed on any one person.  Jason Campbell threw two great passes during each of the first two scoring drives.  On the first Devin Thomas dropped the ball.  On the second Mike Sellars dropped it.


During the third scoring drive terrible play calling seemed to doom the team.  Two runs up the middle and a third down gimmick caused a drive to stall without giving the QB a chance to make a single throw.


There are many reasons why I may keel over any game now.  Until the Redskins can stop making silly mistakes and end this scoring jinx I will be content to stand up during the fourth quarter of games. 


I will also be finalizing my last will and testament.

Category: NFL
Posted on: September 6, 2009 1:54 am

Da Bearss!

The greatest comedy is the comedy that is a true reflection of the reality in which we live.

Based on Bears fans' reactions after the Cutler deal I have gained a new respect for the early nineties SNL Bear fan parodies featuring Mike Myers and Chris Farley, among others.

The Bears fans are so pumped by the signing of Jay Cutler that they have reverted to Ditka era form.  Please don't give a reasonable argument for why the Bears might not make the playoffs this year.  You will have 50 fanatics cursing you for even considering that the Bears may not succeed.

In honor of the classic SNL sketcches, I would like to update them to accurately reflect modern Chicago fans.

Host: "Alright everybody, it's time for season predictions.  Everyone please give your opinion of how the Bears' season will play out.  Personally, I think that 15-1 is a distinct possibility."

Fan #1: "16-0.  The Packers play us close, but Cutler pulls it out in the end."

Fan #2: "Undefeated season.  This is the year that Don Shula is finally disappointed."

Fan #3:  "15-1, due to a blown call against Cutler by Ed Hochuli."

Host:  "O.K.  We all seem to be in agreement about that issue.  Now I would like to ask you to predict how the Bears will due against Favre and the Vikings.  Who wins?"

Fan #1:  "Da Bears.  Cutler throws seven TD's to Earl Bennett.  52-17."

Fan#2:  "Da Bears!"

Fan#3:  "Da Bears knock Favre out early and manhandle Jackson on their way to a 35-2 victory."

Host:  "Alright, but just to make it interesting, let's suppose that Cutler is only six inches tall.  The Bears have to play with a mini-Cutler."

Fan #1:  "Bears.  21-17."

Fans #2:  " Da Bears, but it's close."

Fan #3:  "DA BEARSS!"
Category: NFL
Posted on: August 10, 2009 12:22 am

Titans Owe Me 50$, Internal Investigation

My bookie gave me the Titans giving 3 and 1/2.  I was sitting pretty.

The boys in powder blue were all over Buffalo, winning by a convincing 21-9 advantage in the fourth.

Then the Titans put in fourth stringer Mortensen.  This guy doesn't last two plays before he lobs up a lame duck to a wide open Bills cornerback, who procedes to strut his way to the house.

The very next series Ramsey is back in at QB.  Now this is the first preseason game.  This is the time to let young players work through mistakes.  Conventional wisdom says that they stick with Mortensen.  Yet out he comes.

I know why Fisher yanked him.  Old Jeff had more money riding on that game than I did and he wasn't gonna let some young punk (who may or may not have taken a payoff) ruin it for him.

But the Titans played stout defense and intercepted a pass to seal the deal.  Three plays later they were a punt away from paying for my gas this week.

I had my phone in hand ready to press speed dial to see when I could collect my payout.

Then the punter gets the bright idea to run out the clock instead of punting.  OK.  No big deal.  He will run around before kneeling at the five.  Game over.

But what does this prick do?  he runs to the back of the end zone and stands there.  As cameras pan to Jeff Fisher racing down the sideline with veins bulging from his neck mouthing "NO! NO!" out of his beat root red face he calmly steps on the back of the end zone.

Game over.  Bet over.

Now I'm not insinuating that the game was fixed, but I did see several Italian businessman in leisure suits congratulating the punter after the game.  Call me a cynic, but I don't think the were congratulating him for the trick play he pulled off in the first half.

You may say that I have a gambling problem for betting on meaningless pre season games, but I feel that I am shedding light on a growing problem in the NFL today.

If preseason games are being fixed then it creates doubt about the true motives surrounding the officiating of the Steelers/Seahawks Superbowl.  Or the "tuck rule" game.  Or the Eagles/Bengals game last year.  Yeah. Sure McNabb.  I really believe that you are dumb enough to not understand NFL overtime rules.

Please look into this matter.  The integrity of the game of football is at stake.

In addition to my 50 bucks.
Category: NFL
Posted on: June 10, 2009 2:03 pm

Second Generation Redskin

Some people seem to be born into a profession.  Everyone knows the type. We have all known people who are third generation doctors and fourth generation servicemen.  We all know someone like this.


            I also was born into a proud tradition.  One not as lucrative or respectable as being a doctor or lawyer, but I am proud of it just the same.


            I am a second generation Redskin fan.


            My father was a die hard redskin fan who somehow managed to get along with my mother’s family, who were all Giant fans (my grandfather taught me another fine tradition: gambling.  We bet on all Giant /Redskin games from the time I was three).  There are pictures floating around my parent’s house of me with a Redskin jumper sitting on my dad’s knee at the advanced age of one watching Joe Gibb’s first season as coach.


            Most people don’t retain memories before the age of four or five.  I have a vivid recollection of my first memory.  My dad’s boss had given him two tickets to see the ‘84 Superbowl between the Raiders and Redskins.  I was excited………until I realized he was taking my mom to California to watch the game instead of me.  I had to stay with Grandma and Grandpa Giant.


            It turned out to be a blessing in disguise.  If I had gone and watched the Redskins get humiliated in the Superbowl before a 95% Raider crowd I would have looked like that little kid after the Duke /Maryland game that is so famously pictured crying in his dad’s arms, while his dad looks like he just had an accident in his pants.  Instead I got to cry at home, where at least no one was snapping pictures.


            Despite his lousy performance against the Raiders I was a huge Joe Theismann fan.  My father was too.  We have a porcelain Theismann Christmas tree ornament that we hang on the tree every year.  It’s become a tradition.


            I mention this because a funny thing happened to this ornament.  In 1985, about a month after Lawrence Taylor gave Theismann an extra knee joint halfway down his shin, we began putting up our Christmas decorations.  Somehow the Theismann ornament fell as we were taking it out of storage and it broke the same leg that he had just broken in real life.  My father and I saw the irony immediately.


            My dad super glued the leg back onto his body and our injured hero went back on the tree, where he will be this Christmas and every one after.  Unfortunately for the Redskins it proved to be much more difficult to glue the real Joe Theismann’s leg back together.  The injury would end his career.


            Despite this setback the Redskins were just beginning their golden era.  They would go on to three more NFC championship games and win two more Superbowls.  Many Redskin fans agree that Riggo’s run in the ‘83 Superbowl was the greatest moment in franchise history.  While it may be more important historically, the game that holds the fondest memories for me was the Redskins/Broncos Superbowl in 1988.

            My parents used to go to a Superbowl party at their friends house and I used to go with them.  My memory is a bit hazy, but I don’t remember any other kids at these parties.  They had a pool for the game that was broken down by points during each quarter.  I remember the safety during the Bears/Patriots game two years before that gave me the winning point total for that quarter.


            I would like to say I won the pool during the Redskin/Broncos Superbowl by predicting Doug Williams’ glorious second quarter, but I don’t think Williams himself could have predicted the turn of events that took place.


            Most of the guests at this party were Steelers fans.  For some reason they had an AFC loyalty and were pulling for Elway and the Broncos.  When Denver jumped out to a commanding 10-0 lead there was a lot of hooting and hollering.  I cringed when Williams hyper extended his knee and had to leave the game momentarily.  I was having flashbacks of Joe Theismann’s career ender just two years before.


            The injury did not end Doug Williams’ career that day, however.  When he returned during the next series he led the Redskins to the greatest one quarter performance in Superbowl history.  Thirty five points later you would have been able to hear a pin drop at that party.  At least you would have if that annoying eight year old kid would have stopped bouncing up and down and screaming.  I’m sure a few of the adults did not appreciate being taunted by an obnoxious kid while their team was getting steamrolled, but I was oblivious. 


            The recent history of the Redskins has not been nearly as exciting as their Superbowl era.  I must admit that being a Redskin fan sometimes makes me feel like a battered wife.  I know that they will probably disappoint me but I go back to them every year.  Even after the black eye they gave me last year I still cling to hope.


            People ask me sometimes why I don’t switch allegiances and start following another team.  To me that would be similar to dropping my daughter off at the doctor’s office and leaving with another child.  As much as it pains me sometimes I am emotionally invested.  I was born into this.


            As I reflect on my birthright as a lifelong Skins fan I am preparing to hop back on the Redskins roller coaster for one more spin around the tracks of the NFL season.  I remain hopeful that this time there aren’t as many unexpected drops at the end of the long climb up the hill.



Category: NFL
Tags: humor, Redskins
Posted on: June 10, 2009 2:00 pm

Favre Signs With Vikes...........................

   The Vikings have announced that they have officially signed Favre and have designated him as their featured running back for the 2009 season. 

     A Vikings spokesman said that the Vikings were impressed by his speed and especially his ability to catch passes out of the backfield.  "We envision him playing as a Brian Westbrook type of player.  He will be flanked out wide from time to time." 

     The source also said the Vikings were installing special "wildcat" formations for him and were also considering letting him field punts.  Adrian Peterson has embraced a backup role wholeheartedly. 

     "I'm willing to do whatever it takes to win," Peterson told us on the phone Tuesday night.  "Obviously when you have a choice between Favre and Adrian Peterson you will pick him every time.  I think this will be a great one-two punch."

     Favre has praised Peterson for his unselfish attitude.  He has asked for the Vikings to feature a two back set with Peterson serving as a fullback to help clear blocking lanes for the future hall of fame runner.

     "I'm excited about this new opportunity," Favre told us.  "The Jets used me as a more traditional type of back, but I feel I can be effective catching passes also.  I am a really good route runner and linebackers will have problems keeping up with my speed."

     With Sage Rosenfels handing off and throwing to Brett Favre the Vikings now look to be the odds on favorite to win the Superbowl this year.  Place your bets early folks.



Category: NFL
Tags: humor, Vikings
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