What a surprise. The 49ers came into SOFI Stadium yesterday and beat up on the Rams again, this time 31-14. It doesn’t seem to matter if the 49ers are banged up, where they play, or what the situation is. San Francisco has been smacking the Rams around for 8 straight regular season meetings. What really made this one sting is that Cooper Kupp and Matthew Stafford got banged up, and they were also victimized by Christian McCaffrey, who they tried to trade for a week ago. The problems are still the same. Poor offensive line play, no running game to keep the 49ers off the field, and no vertical threat in the passing game. The only good news is that they don’t have to play the 49ers again for the last 10 games of the regular season. If the Rams could somehow sign Odell Beckham and trade for Kareem Hunt, that would change their offense quite a bit. However, that’s a lot to ask for. Since that probably won’t happen, I suggest Sean McVay send a fruit basket to Cam Akers so he will get back in the lineup and come with a positive attitude.
Elsewhere around the NFL in Week 8, the Bills took down the Packers on SNF, and Aaron Rodgers is ready to send his wide receivers to Greenland for the rest of the winter. The Seahawks got the best of the Giants, and Geno Smith has risen from the dead like Jesus Christ himself. The Colts got beaten by the Commanders, and this time they can’t blame it on Matt Ryan or Carson Wentz! The Eagles crushed the Steelers, and the Pittsburgh fans are going to use those terrible towels to wipe their tears. The Raiders must have had too much jambalaya before their loss in New Orleans. The Broncos beat the Jaguars, but the British informed us that if we ever send those two teams to play in England again, they will consider it an act of terror and will declare war against the United States.
To the NBA, where the Lakers finally found the win column last night, ending a five game losing streak. For just a moment, I will give Russell Westbrook credit for his performance last night, and since coming off the bench. He played well, however, he’s still a terrible fit, and this team has absolutely no shooting. I also found it interesting last night that Jeanie Buss and Rob Pelinka didn’t show for the George Mikan retirement ceremony. That tells me they are self-aware of the public dissatisfaction with the team, and that they didn’t want to endure getting booed. The more and more I watch this team, I don’t even think it’s worth a trade to try and keep the Lebron and AD era alive. AD is elite when he’s healthy, but he’s never healthy. Of course he injured his back again last night, but do you really think he’s going to hold up for another 77 games? Lebron is still excellent, but as great as he is, he doesn’t impact the game like he used to, evidenced by the fact he can’t even get the bums around him to the play-in game. By the time Rob Pelinka makes a trade, it’s going to be too late. I’m also afraid that he’s still focused on Kyrie Irving, who is clearly an idiot, and it would be a mistake to bring that lunatic to the Lakers, even by some crazy chance it goes down. The scary part is, knowing Pelinka, he will probably make a trade when it’s too late.
Meanwhile, the Clippers should be very worried about Kawhi Leonard. I realize that Kawhi has often been handled with extra care, and load managed quite a bit since leaving San Antonio. However, even for Kawhi, you have to wonder if his knee is really going to hold up. He hasn’t played basketball for over a year, yet he’s going to miss 5 straight games after tonight, due to “load management” of his knee. On top of that, despite all their depth, the Clippers haven’t looked good. Were it not for the disasters that are the Lakers and Nets, people would be talking more about this. Not only do the Clippers need Kawhi to be healthy, they need him practicing and on the floor so they can build chemistry. It’s definitely a problem to keep a very close eye on given the expectations.
Every since the Dodgers got sent home early, all I keep hearing about is rumors about who they are interested in pursuing this off-season. The name that keeps coming up is Aaron Judge. If Andrew Friedman, or anybody else thinks the Dodgers need Aaron Judge to solve their problems, you seriously haven’t been paying attention. You really think the Dodgers need more talent? You really think they need another guy that is swinging for the fences all the time and strikes out a lot? You really think they need to give another long-term deal to a player in his 30’s? Just because they have the money to go get a guy like Judge, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. The Dodgers problem isn’t personnel. They will have a talented team next year that is in contention once again. Their issue is their approach to postseason baseball, and until they fix that over-analytics based approach, we’ll be having the same conversation again this time next year.
To College Football, where USC outlasted Arizona over the weekend, in another typical Lincoln Riley shootout. Caleb Williams is out here throwing another 5 touchdown passes for the 2nd straight game, and racking up over 400 yards in passing. This guy is putting up video game numbers, and this time it came without his leading receivers, Jordan Addison and Mario Williams. As great a Caleb Williams has been, he’s still probably 3rd in the race for the Heisman Trophy. Hendon Hooker from Tennessee and CJ Stroud from Ohio State are the two front-runners for now. Whether or not Williams candidacy improves will depend on how his team finishes over the course of the next month, and especially if the Trojans can’t find a way to sneak into the CFP.
Williams isn’t the only Southern California College Quarterback vying for the Heisman. Dorian Thompson Robinson from UCLA is also continuing to put up impressive numbers every week, including this past week in the win over Stanford. It’s amazing that we are talking about DTR in this light, after everything we saw from him before this year. Then again, these are just college kids, and not everybody develops at the same rate. If UCLA finds a way to sneak into the CFP, and there’s still a chance, then DTR will at least find himself in New York for the Heisman ceremony. The Bruins are up to #10 in the AP Polll, but they have two tough games against the Arizona schools before their showdown against the Trojans.