NFL Season Summary

As the NFL season comes to an end, I can’t help but imagine what next season has in store for us football fans. This season has provided us with plenty to talk about and it looks like half the teams in the NFL will have a chance to make the playoffs come next week. I have thoroughly enjoyed the excitement and entertainment that the NFL has provided all of us with this year and I think its about time I summarize this years NFL season with a couple of awards. It may be a week early but hey…just means I’ll be the only one with awards out in time for the holiday season. So lets get started.

THE UNDERACHIEVERS

[1] Pittsburgh Steelers (7-8) – I consider the Steelers underachievers for one reason and one reason only and that is because they are the defending Super bowl champs and they will most likely miss the playoffs this season. Pittsburgh’s season isn’t all that surprising to me considering they made the playoffs last year as a wildcard and this year they will just barely fall short but anytime the defending Superbowl champs fail to make the playoffs the following season, you have gotta chalk them up as underachievers because you can be sure their fans have.

[2] Cincinnati Bengals (8-6) – How can an 8-6 team on the verge of making the playoffs as a wildcard be considered a disappointment? Very easily, considering experts pick you to easily win your division and challenge for the best record in football as well as a trip to the Superbowl all while boasting one of the best and most explosive offenses in the entire NFL…and you do none of them.

[3] Indianapolis Colts (11-4) – How can an 11-4 team on the verge of finishing their season tied with the fourth best record in football be considered a disappointment? Trust me, Colts fans are not going to forgive their team for their recent collapse so neither will I. The Colts have lost 3 of their last 4 games and although that ain’t too bad, considering the losses were to teams like the Titans, the Texans (who beat them today for the first time in franchise history) and an absolute blowout by the Jaguars just two weeks ago, the Colts look tired and finished. That defense needs to be completely rebuilt. They’ll be lucky to get by the first round.

[4] New York Giants (7-8) – This is a team many picked to make it to the Superbowl but they won’t even make it to the playoffs. The Giants have had a rough season (right Plaxico?) and considering this is Tiki Barber’s last year and the Giants don’t have another RB, I’d say they are kinda lucky to have a chance to get a replacement in the draft. Better luck next year.

[5] Carolina Panthers (7-8) – It’s definitely a disappointing season when your team could be 11-4 instead of 7-8 had they just held on in the 4th quarter in four games this year. Well it’s better to give then to receive and the Panthers have demonstrated the Holiday spirit all season long.

[6] Miami Dolphins (6-8) – Can anyone remember at the start of the season when people were talking about Cullpeppers comeback year and a potential trip to the Superbowl for the Dolphins? Anyone? Guess nobody wants to admit it because EVERYBODY predicted it. Makes me wish I had started writing earlier because I had Cullpepper as my fantasy QB last year and when the Dolphins got him I was saying what a mistake it was and how the team will go nowhere with him. Maybe Joey Harrington can be the answer…ok, definitely not.

[7] Chicago Bears Offense (13-2) – The Bears offense deserves very little credit if any credit at all for the Bears 13 wins this season. Grossman has had an on and off year (where he has mostly been off) and the Bears defense has bailed this team out on more than just a few occasions. In fact, I wonder who scored more points…the Bears offense or their defense? Either way, Grossman has got to play better.

THE OVERACHIEVERS

[1] New Orleans Saints (10-5) – This team came together in the darkest of times and gave a city as well as a nation something to cheer about. This team was playing for more than themselves or their city or even their fans, they were playing for an entire country’s hopes and dreams and they did so with class, dignity and a passion that can only be described as incredible. Congratulations and thank you.

[2] Tennessee Titans (8-7) – The Tennessee Titans along with their spectacular rookie QB Vince Young have been one of the most pleasant surprises this season. The Titans have definitely overachieved this year finishing with at least a .500 record and amazing wins against teams like the Colts, Giants, Eagles, Jaguars and Bills and have the possibility of making the playoffs with a little luck (I can dream, can’t I?). Vince Young has been magnificent and PacMan Jones deserves A LOT of credit as well.

[3] New York Jets (8-6) – What are the Jets doing with a winning record and a serious shot at making the playoffs? Don’t ask me but I’ll bet it has something to do with Laveranues Coles’ 1000 yards receiving and 6 TD’s and maybe a little something to do with their team leader and starting QB Chad Pennington coming back and playing 14 games this season. Just a hunch.

[4] Baltimore Ravens (12-3) – The Ravens’ defense is back in full force and look like the team they were back when they won the Superbowl against the Giants…only this time they are younger and faster and have a MUCH better offense (McNair, Heap, Lewis…). Everyone knows how great a QB McNair is but I think we failed to realize what a great leader he truly is.

[5] Tony Romo (6-2) – 2440 yards, 16 TD’s, 10 INT’s and a 98.4 QB Rating. His stats scream overachiever and the Cowboys couldn’t be happier…after all, where would they be without him?

[6] Chicago Bears Defense (13-2) – How can a team have a spot on both lists? Their offense is that bad and their defense is that good. Like I said before, the Bears defense had to play both roles of defending and scoring on more than a few occasions and gave this team wins they did not deserve. If you don’t believe me, just ask the Arizona Cardinals.

MVP

Drew Brees – Tomlinson will no doubt win Offensive Player of the Year and he absolutely deserves it after the incredible season he has had this year however he should not win the MVP. Drew Brees has been the best offensive QB this year and has thrown for over 4200 yards, 25 TD’s, 11 INT’s, a 65.6% completion percentage and a 98.2 QB Rating on a team without a real number one receiver. But that is not why he should win. Brees has transformed rookie wideout Marques Colston into a pro bowl receiver with 1000 yards and 7 TD’s. But that is not why he should win. Brees has elevated his play and the play of everyone around him (including Colston, Bush, Mcallister…) and brought a team that went 3-13 last year to a 10-5 record and a division win…and that is only part of why he should win. Hurricane Katrina left the city of New Orleans and its people devastated and without hope after it completely destroyed everything they had known and loved. Throughout the NFL season, the Saints have truly become Saints for their city as well as their entire country as they restored hope and happiness across a country that had seen more than its fair share of disasters in the last couple of years. New Orleans is the real MVP of the NFL and their MVP is Drew Brees.

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

LT: 1626 yards rushing and 28 TD’s, 484 yards receiving and 3 TD’s, 2 TD passes. Anyone disagree?

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Champ Bailey: This is a bit of a biased pick considering I’m watching the Bengals-Broncos game right now and Bailey just picked off Palmer but I think its the most legitimate pick I can make. 75 Tackles and 8 INT’s not including todays is pretty good and considering he is the best defensive back in the league and can shutdown absolutely anyone…ya, I’d say he deserves it.

FUNNIEST PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Chad Johnson (aka Ocho Cinco): This pick is more because of what he did last year (like making a list of everyone who was going to cover him and ticking off who could and who couldn’t do their job against him or like when he proposed to the cheerleader as a TD celebration) than what he has done this year, mostly because of the league’s new restrictions. This year, Chad’s antics included cutting his hair into a yellow mohawk (looks even weirder than it sounds) and then a few weeks later promising to cut it off if he didn’t score in a game (I think it was just an excuse to shave it off). Can’t wait to see what he’ll have in store for us next year.

MOST WARRANTED SUSPENSION

Shawne Merriman: I’m sorry but there is no room in professional sports for steroids. No exceptions.

MOST UNSPORTSMANLIKE PLAY

Albert Haynesworth: Everyone probably expecting Terrell Owens (and he would be a legitimate choice) but we cannot forget that Albert Haynesworth stepped on an opposing player’s head, tearing his face open and requiring many stitches. No room for this in professional sports either.

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Vince Young, QB: Easy choice considering his team is 8-7 and he is the reason why.

BEST COACH

Bill Belichick: Every year, only three constants on the New England Patriots remain the same, Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and their winning record. What more can I say other than that Bill is the best coach in the NFL.

Happy Holidays

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A Touching Story…

This is one of the most unbelievable and touching stories I have ever heard in my entire life and I really hope that you all take the time to read and watch it for yourself. The link to the original is below.

A Touching Story

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Crazy Hockey Moves by a 13 year old Canadian Kid

Simply some absolutely ridiculous moves performed during a breakaway relay practice session. Wouldn’t mind seeing some of these moves done in the NHL.

Allen Iverson Traded to Denver

Well its official, Allen Iverson has been traded from the Philadelphia 76ers to the Denver Nuggets today. In return for the two time scoring champion, the Sixers acquire Andre Miller, Joe Smith and two Number 1 picks in the 2007 NBA draft.

Fair Trade?

Well considering that the Sixers were absolutely desperate to unload their 30 year old all star and the Nuggets have lost their franchise player and current NBA scoring leader in Carmelo Anthony to a 15 game suspension for fighting, there really is no way of saying whether or not this trade is fair…but I’ll give it a try.

Iverson will be able to easily step in and become a temporary replacement for Carmelo Anthony while he serves his suspension and when he returns, the answer can hopefully provide the answer the Nuggets are looking for in order to elevate their team to the next level. AI and CA will be a very explosive combination and personally I can’t wait to see Iverson in action with serious scoring threats and all stars on his team. Denver got the guy they wanted (an all star, two time scoring champion and currently second in scoring this year) and they didn’t even have to give up anyone serious. Andre Miller is a 30 year old PG averaging 13 points/game while Joe Smith is a bust of a first overall pick. The most valuable assets the Nuggets gave away in this deal are the two 1st Round picks in this years draft, a draft that has scouts all over the league absolutely salivating, but the Nuggets want to be great now and adding Iverson is an excellent way to accomplish that goal.

I guarantee you the Sixers made this trade because of the prospect of having three first round picks in this years NBA draft (the two they got from the Nuggets and their own). The draft is supposed to be full of talented and skilled players ready to make an immediate impact in this league including guys like Ohio State’s Greg Oden, Texas’ Kevin Durant and Florida’s Joakim Noah. The Sixers should finish close to last in the league if not last and that should give them an excellent shot at getting Greg Oden with the first overall pick. With two more picks in the first round alone, the Sixers would have the chance to surround young talented players like Korver, Dalembert and Iguodala with even more young and talented players giving them a lineup that could compete in this league for a very long time. Teams usually need a couple of years to rebuild but the Sixers will have the ability to rebuild their team in just one (especially if they get Oden). Andre Miller is a good but not great point guard who can definitely step into a larger role for Philadelphia but I really don’t think he is a main piece of the puzzle for the Sixers’ future plans.

The trade gives both teams the pieces they need to better their teams and really, isn’t that what the holiday seas…I mean fair trades are all about?

Happy Holidays!


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Stern too harsh? No way. Too Lenient…?

By now everyone has seen the huge fight that took place at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night (and if you haven’t just check it out here in the NBA section) and hopefully everyone has heard of the strict punishments Darth Stern has handed out this week to all those involved. A total of seven players (out of ten who were actually ejected from the game, if that makes sense) were suspended and each team was actually fined $500,000 in an effort to hopefully avoid further similar “events” and preserve the NBA’s already decaying image.

So Stern got the opportunity to dish out some pain this week and honestly, I don’t think he took full advantage. We all know that Stern has been trying to turn the NBA’s players into little 12 year old boy scouts who can do no wrong and after the massive fight Saturday night, I really thought that Carmelo Anthony would be reported as missing and Nate Robinson would wind up in a crate on a cargo plane on its way to somewhere in Nicaragua. Hey, it could happen. The lucky winner to receive Stern’s largest suspension of 15 games was none other than Carmelo (no surprise there) while Nate Robinson and J.R. Smith got 10 games each. I don’t know about you, but personally I think I would have given Anthony way more games because when the fight looked to be over and everyone was starting to calm down, he comes over and punches a Knick player in the face and starts the fight up all over again. I’m not saying Stern dropped the ball because his punishments were definitely reasonable but considering the response from writers and analysts, like Wilbon and Kornheiser, he could have gotten away with much more.


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Has TO taken ALL the headlines?

I am going to make this short and sweet…well maybe not so sweet (and maybe not so short either). Terrell Owens continues to provide us with someone we love (and I mean LOVE) to hate this NFL season and I think we should all thank him because without him and his antics (his most recent being him spitting on DeAngelo Hall during a game Saturday night) we might have actually spent more time talking about more compelling and entertaining stories such as (in no particular order):

[1] Tomlinson breaking Alexander’s TD record.

[2] The Steelers collapse just a year after winning the Superbowl.

[3] Vick no longer being considered an elite QB in the NFL.

[4] Vince Young being hailed as Rookie of the Year after starting his NFL career 7-4 despite having awful passing stats (I love him but 1700+ passing, 10 TDs, 11 INTs and a 65.7 QB Rating!!!).

[5] Dallas’ resurgence thanks to Tony Romo replacing a statue that looked an awful lot like Drew Bledsoe.

[6] Drew Brees being the best QB in the NFL this year! (4000+ yards, 25 TDs, 10 INTs and a 101.2 QB Rating)

[7] Giants going from projected Superbowl favorites to a potential wild card…if they’re lucky.

[8] Tiki RETIRING!?!?

[9] Reggie Bush and Mario Williams…Wait, Mario Who?

[10] Absolutely no one noticing how Chad Johnson pushed his game into overdrive after the Bengals looked like they were out of it and pretty much single handedly (with some help from TJ) brought them back to respectability and a potential wild card spot (765 yards receiving and 5 TDs in his last 5 games and the Bengals went 4-1 in that span).

[11] Carolina just plain being bad, just really bad.

[12] Dolphins’ rollercoaster of a season and Joey Harrington’s resurgence. I know I cant believe I said it either.

[13] Patriots winning their Division…again.

[14] Detroit Lions being the best 2-12 team in the league. Roy Williams can at least be proud of that, right?

[15] People actually saying Manning may never get to the Super Bowl despite the fact that the Colts are 10-3 and have won their division for a fourth straight year.

[16] Mcnabb getting injured…again.

So thanks Terrell because without you, we might have actually paid more attention to more serious and interesting stories surrounding the NFL this season but hey, I guess you spitting on a guy is kinda cool too. Although I must admit that I did enjoy watching Michael Irvin defend you and even select you as a Gamebreaker every week on NFL Sunday Countdown. It quickly became my Sunday morning ritual; wake up, watch Irvin defend you, watch you completely embarrass yourself by dropping a pass or saying/doing something completely immature and detrimental to your team, then wait till next Sunday to see how Michael would defend you. It was pretty entertaining.


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Nuggets and Knicks all out brawl at MSG

Tonight (December 16, 2006) marked the second full out team on team brawl in the NBA in the last three years. The first was one I think we all remember between the Pistons and Pacers in Detroit, although that one was much more serious as it involved fans rather than just players. Tonight, the Denver Nuggets and New York Knicks got into a huge fight that will most likely warrant practically the entire rosters of both teams being suspended but in all honesty the damage has been done. The NBA is a league desperately trying to change its image and events like these certainly don’t help Stern’s cause. The commish is constantly inventing new rules every year in an attempt to reverse the horrible image that the NBA claims it has and after tonight, you have just got to wonder if its working.

The fight started after a very flagrant foul by Marty Collins on J.R. Smith and resulted in the ejection of a total of ten players. “According to the Knicks, the whole thing happened because the Nuggets still had their starters on the floor with 1:15 left and a 19-point lead. Denver won 123-100.” Maybe one of the worst excuses I have ever heard. I mean sure the Nuggets should have cut them some slack because you never try and embarrass a team especially on their home court but to start a fight like that, someone better have a much better excuse than that. The Knicks are bad and everybody knows it so frustration is bound to spill over onto the court but it seems to me like the NBA may have a much more serious problem than we thought…or maybe Stern has realized and we just haven’t caught up.

Either way, the only one that suffers because of these childish displays of immaturity by overly paid celebrity athletes is the NBA. Simple, right? Not if you ask David Stern.

By the way…Carmelo can throw one hell of a punch!

The Big Fight! Knicks-Nuggets Brawl 16.12.06

Sorry they must have taken it off youtube so heres another one.


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