January 9th, 2017
Perhaps it wasn’t such a great idea for the Giants’ receivers to go on that boating trip to Miami. Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepherd looked like they forgot to bring their hands back from the trip, as the Packers blew out the G-Men yesterday on Wild Card Weekend. Odell’s hands were obviously still greasy from rubbing down all those men in Miami with sunscreen, as he dropped two touchdown passes while Aaron Rodgers was connecting on another Hail Mary touchdown pass. The Packers are are on fire, and headed for an epic showdown with the Cowboys. It was so cold in Green Bay yesterday that Eli Manning’s mom packed an extra thermos of hot chocolate for the quarterback. Here’s Rodgers huge Hail Mary…..
Meanwhile in Pittsburgh, the Steelers dismantled the Dolphins. That game was a bigger mismatch than Big Ben locked in a room full of sorority girls. Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Browh put up monster numbers and looked like they were playing Tecmo Bowl. Bell is the worst thing to happen to the “anti-drug” campaign. That team looks so good at times, but so inconsistent at others. Still, Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin is much more than just the “cheerleader” that Terry Bradshaw suggested he is. In the last 10 years, this “cheerleader” has won 64% of his games, with 5 division titles, 2 Super Bowl appearances, and one of only 6 active head coaches that have won a Super Bowl. Nice try Terry Bradshaw. Congratulations to Matt More, who made history yesterday. Moore is the first quarterback to die, yet continue an NFL game……..
In Seattle, the Seahawks took care of the Lions. This is definitely the worst thing to happen to Lions fans since they found out they actually live in Detroit. Cheer up though guys, you can still buy pieces of property out there for about $10, so it’s not so bad. Seattle was never going to lose that game playing at home, especially while Matt Stafford had a bad hand. I think The Lions may be the only franchise to give up a one handed TD while getting face masked and a butt catch in the same game.
Then there’s the tragedy that was the Raiders, getting blown out by the Texans. I was waiting for a Brock Osweiler implosion here, but it was the Raiders’ Connor Cook who was the disaster. I had a better quarterback rating than Connor Cook on Saturday, and I haven’t played tackle football in 15 years. It was so bad that the Raiders would have been better off playing Derek Carr with a broken leg than putting Cook out there. That’s about as good as it’s going to get this year for the Texans, who should be demolished next weekend in New England. The Patriots thought they get one bye week during this years playoffs, but it turns out it was really two.
To the NBA, where the Lakers are still searching for some consistency. That’s typical of a young team, however, there’s some trade opportunities out there for the team to consider. Specifically, Chicago Bulls all-star swingman, Jimmy Butler. According to Ric Bucher, the Bulls are shopping Butler. Considering the new CBA is going to keep most all-star players with their current teams, when a player like Butler becomes available, it’s worth considering whether or not you should deal for him. You can be sure a conversation with the Bulls will actually take place, but Chicago would likely ask for two players among, Jordan Clarkson, D’Angelo Russell, Brandon Ingram, and Julius Randle, with one of the two being Russell or Randle. Butler is a very good player with a team friendly contract, and I had to ask myself this question a few times before deciding that the Lakers should keep the kids and not make a trade like that. I’ve seen what a team looks like with Jimmy Butler as its best player, and it’s not only not a championship team, it might not even be a playoff team. However, we don’t know what this Laker team is going to look like in the next 2-3 years, but it should at least be a playoff team with the development we’ve seen thus far. You just have to have patience, which nobody seems to have.
As for the Clippers, they have turned things around winning four straight. Chris Paul made an emphatic return with on Friday night with an efficient game, and then followed it up with an 18 assist game yesterday. The bigger issue though is that the Clipps whine more than a room full of pre-schoolers. They’ve been charged with 34 technical fouls this season, 3rd most in the league. At this point, even Doc Rivers knows his team is a bunch of cry babies, and has told them to pipe down because the officials are targeting them. More than anything though, this type of complaining is so symbolic of the Clippers lack of discipline in the last five years in big games, and a big reason why they will come up short again in the playoffs.
Russell Westbrook amazes me. The man is averaging a triple double, which nobody in the NBA has done in the last 55 years, yet he’s getting criticized for his selfishness. Ironically, Westbrook is one of the few elite players who decided to stay with his current team by signing an extension, which he should be lauded for. Instead, after Westbrook and the Thunder lost to James Harden and the Rockets earlier in the week, the media was suggesting that Harden was more unselfish than Westbrook. Harden is definitely having an MVP caliber season, but people who cover the NBA have very short memories. Harden is the same guy who quit on his teammates last season. Westbrook is still a better defender, and more explosive than Harden Nobody that averages a triple double is selfish. Just because you don’t like the way Westbrook executes at the end of games doesn’t mean he can’t change that. The same way Harden became a better teammate this season. If Westbrook averages a triple double for the year, he should definitely be the MVP. Knowing the media though, they’ll probably give it to Harden.
To college hoops, where the Bruins picked up a couple of wins against Cal and Stanford the last few days. UCLA will likely move up a spot in the AP poll, probably #3, after #1 Villanova lost earlier in the week. Lonzo Ball is doing it all, and he might not even be the best Ball brother that’s going to be playing at UCLA in the next four years. Apparently, their father has had them working on all kinds of crazy things in practice over the years, including regularly shooting half-court shots. That probably explains why you see this from him all the time…..
Then there’s USC, who’s starting to look like the mid-major I thought they might be about a week ago. The Trojans lost a close one at home to Cal last night, which is already their second loss in Pac 12 Play. That game between the Bears and Trojans may have been exciting last night, but USC looks like nothing more than a middle of the road Pac 12 team, and nothing like the team we saw last year.
The Rams coaching search is still in full effect. Last week’s interviews were headlined by Patriots Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels, Bills Interim Coach Anthony Lynn, and Jacksonville Interim Coach Doug Marrone. Falcons Offensive Coordinator Kyle Shanahan will likely be this week. The “hot candidate” seems to be Shanahan. However, I don’t ever recall “the hot candidate” ever being all that great in recent memory. Mike McCoy was “the hot candidate” a couple of years ago with the Chargers and now he’s out. Josh McDaniels was “the hot candidate” a few years earlier with the Broncos, then ran Jay Cutler out of town, and then was run out of town after that. All the big names we heard a few weeks ago like Jim Harbaugh and Jon Gruden won’t even interview, so I fully expect to be underwhelmed when a new coach is announced.
Is Lane Kiffin one of the most disliked people on the planet? He must be. A pretty good sign that people don’t like you is when you are asked not to call plays in the National Championship game when you’ve been doing it all year long, and then your replacement is a recovering alcoholic. My favorite part of this was when Kiffin thought we were all dumb enough to believe that this was a mutual agreement between him and Nick Saban. Saban just wants him gone after he accepted a job with Florida Atlantic. I’m taking Alabama tonight over Clemson in the National Championship game. Nobody can stop the Crimson Tide and all the money they are paying their players.