January 11, 2021
The Rams got a big playoff win over Seattle on Saturday! I’m really glad the offense finally scored a touchdown in the red zone because I was about to start calling it “The Twilight Zone”. Cam Akers is a stud running the ball, but the defense is the story. They put so much pressure on Russell Wilson, he would have struggled passing the salt at the dinner table. Aaron Donald was dominant as ever, and it’s hard to argue with Howie Long’s assessment that he’s going to end up as the greatest defensive tackle to ever play when you see that. The Rams were fortunate that Donald seems to be ok since none of his ribs were broken. We’ll see about Cooper Kupp and John Wolford, but it’s hard to imagine Goff not starting next week. This team has been very up and down, but so has the entire NFC. You have to be intrigued at the thought of this team going on the road with a shutdown defense and a good running game. That plays very well against the Packers.
Elsewhere around Wild Card Weekend, if the Bills had lost, America would have had its second riot in three days. I’m not sure why Frank Reich went for two. It was like Doug Peterson kidnapped him and took over the play-calling in that moment. If the Colts had pulled that off though, you can bet your ass there would have been a 10th Rivers baby by October. Meanwhile in Tampa, the Bucs beat Washington and even though Antonio Brown scored a touchdown, he has been out of football so long he didn’t realize the chest bump is played out. It’s all about the side bump now. Taylor Heinicke played great in the loss, and who knew that Washington would find their next quarterback before their next team name? The Ravens took down the Titans on the road. Mike Vrable at one point said he would be willing to cut off his penis to win a Super Bowl, but wouldn’t go for it on 4th and 2 at the Ravens 40 yard line and down 4. Watching the Titans try to stop Lamar Jackson was like watching security try to stop the Capitol from being invaded by idiots. If you didn’t watch the Saints-Bears on Nickelodeon over CBS, then you were doing it wrong. I thought we would see a little more SpongeBob content though. How does Nickelodeon explain to the kids that Anthony Miller got ejected for punching someone in the face? He should be suspended like Trump’s Twitter account. The Browns shocked everyone by beating upon the Steelers. Pittsburgh looked more terrible than their towels last night. I don’t know what happened to Big Ben with all those turnovers. He got manhandled as if the Browns shoved him forcefully into a bathroom stall. I guess now he know what it feels like.
As for the Chargers, immediately after their last game of the season, Anthony Lynn said the team did a good job under the circumstances. Apparently he was “the circumstances” because he was fired the following day. I have no idea who the Bolts are going to make their next head coach, but this is a critical moment for the franchise. Searching for a new head coach is the right move, as long as they find the right guy. By “right guy” I mean someone who can take Justin Herbert’s development to the next level, and help the team understand how to win close games. The latter has been something that’s felt impossible for this team forever.
To the NBA, where the Lakers crushed the Rockets last night and now have the best record in the Association. That game was definitely one for the “I’m tired of the Lakers not playing hard” crowd. Let’s be honest though: they aren’t always playing hard and sometimes they look like they want to be elsewhere. I get it though. It’s because they barely got an offseason. However, you can’t really complain when they are still the #1 seed after not playing hard for much of their first 11 games. That just tells you when they decide to start playing, the rest of the league better look out. Talen Horton Tucker is a more promising young prospect than Baby Yoda. I really wouldn’t mind seeing Lebron and AD just sit out every 6 or 7 games, and play this kid some real minutes to develop him further. It’s clear that he has talent, and might be not just a good player, but an excellent player in this league.
The Clippers also found the win the column yesterday against the Bulls. It’s safe to say that while the league is in preseason form, the Clippers are in playoff form because they keep blowing 20-point leads. In all seriousness though, the Clips have moments where their team looks very disengaged and uninterested in playing basketball. It makes you wonder what the locker room dynamic is like since Ty Lue took over. It’s too early to tell if there’s a problem or not, because the Clippers’ problems aren’t as bad as much of the league and they’re still a team that can contend. However, I also wonder how effectively Luke Kennard and Marcus Morris are going to fit over the long haul, especially given the money they were paid. Their contributions have been up and down, so only time will tell.
In College Hoops UCLA is is 5-0 in PAC-12 play and in first place. The Bruins swept an Arizona road trip by defeating the Sun Devils and the Wildcats over the weekend. Since Chris Smith went down with a season-ending injury, they are 3-0. This team is just grinding out wins by playing solid defense, winning the battles for loose balls, and getting just enough offense from a 10-man rotation. It’s not sexy, but it’s winning basketball games, and should put the Bruins back in the Top 25 this week. This is exactly why Coach Mick Cronin is more consistent than A Few Good Men on a rainy Sunday. Up next are the Washington schools at Pauley Pavilion.
My thoughts and prayers go out to Tommy Lasorda and his family after he passed away last week. Lasorda was someone who made Dodger fans, sports fans, or just ordinary fans of the American way feel good about themselves. He was someone that just put a smile on your face when you saw him. He was also one of baseball’s most accomplished Managers, winning the World Series and Manager of the Year twice, along with four NL pennants and eight division titles. I’m sure Lasorda was probably cussing up a storm with the way baseball teams are run today, and the way Managers are now just figureheads, unlike in his era. Nevertheless, at least he was alive long enough to see the Dodgers win another World Series before he passed.
Finally, the season premiere of The Bachelor went down on ABC last week, and it’s back on tonight. Matt James is the Bachelor this season, and he is the first black bachelor in the history of the show. I can just envision Matt telling Chris Harrison he’s ready to send Victoria home after the first episode, and Chris threatening to kill him if he did so. Anna saying she was trying to telepathically tell Matt to pick her is one of the weirdest moments I’ve seen in the history of the show, and that’s saying a lot for all the weirdos we’ve seen. How did we not have a major meltdown with two girls wearing the exact same dress? I almost feel cheated that I wanted that for two hours and didn’t see one. I guess ABC saved their budget for The Bachelor and not The Bachelorette since night one was at some spectacular mansion, instead of some shack in the desert like we saw a few weeks ago. I think one of the most disappointing aspects of the first episode was that we’ll never actually know what the vibrator looked liked, other than that it was apparently sparkly. Who knew that you could not show an image of a vibrator on television? Looking forward to seeing where the season goes from here.