Saturday, April 29

Super Mario Brother

Yesterday Armando and were discussing the question "if you were starting an NFL franchise from available talent, who would be the first non-quarterback chosen?" (clearly Kelly Holcolmb would be the first off any qb draft board) Armando more or less settled with LaDanian, while I went with Dwight Freeney, reasoning that a game-stopping DE is more powerful than a playmaking running back. Fortunately for the New Orleans Saints, Gary Kubiak and the Texans staff managed to bug my car and listened in on our little chat before driving the truck from 'Wages of Fear' into their franchise headquarters and blowing up their chance of winning the division for the next decade.

Although I'll continue to argue the merit of taking a DE over all other positions in the current NFL scheme, that situation only holds when we are discussing players of known and approximately equal talent. HOWEVER, when we are talking about one player who is known to consistently embarrass the competition on national television every week and another who didn't register his second sack until his sixth game of the season, we're not really having the same discussion any longer.

This basically comes down to choosing between A) the smoking-hot smart girl you've known for two years with rich parents who love you (although for some reason they failed to pay rent and owe $300,000 to some guy named Michael Michaels) and B) the girl who was at the party all night but you didn't see until 2 a.m. and you think her name is Nancy and some dude you met at the diner the next morning tells you his friend said she's great in bed and loves puppies although he may be mistaken.

Friday, April 28

Thanks Mel, you've been great, now please go back to your hole

Thanks to Armando for holding down the fort while I was in Spain and as far from a computer as possible, and to everyone who emailed, called, and threw bricks with notes through my window politely requesting that I "get my ass back on the internet." Here's your Eagles draft preview, you bucknasty motherfuckers.

The Eagles have 10 picks in this weekend's draft, which lines up nicely with our loss column from last season. [Note: I was sitting around a couple weeks ago, and it hit me: we won six games last year. Six games! The god damn Cleveland Browns won six games last year! At least we've got the Phils] I reckon our biggest holes are, in no particular order: WR, OLB, DE, DT, OT, OG, KR. Our needs on the offensive and defensive lines are convenient, because that's where Andy and Tom were going to draft anyway, which pleases the hell out of me. With the current state of NFL rule calling, it's basically useless to try to do anything exciting in open space where the refs can see it, so your best bet is to get some mashers in the trenches and win the battle there. And say what you will about the NFL refs being flag happy, but at least their not getting paid by the whistle (see NBA Playoffs for reference, especially any series that has gone to 2-0 and doesn't include the words Detroit Pistons). We'll also need some special teamers to replace Keith Adams, who I was waay high on, and would it kill you to draft someone to light a fire under Reno?

Round 1: Normally the Birds would go with some guy out of Eastern Missouri State that you've never heard of, but that's no longer possible thanks to the NFL Draft Channel, aka ESPN. They've carried at least 6 hours a day for a month solid on the sports' greatest crapshoot, and still no one has the slightest idea what's going to happen. There will be more people who aced their Final Four bracket this year than can pick 90% of the first two rounds correctly. I've seen no less than a half-dozen 7-round mock drafts, which are about as useful as stealing SAT answers from the kid that spent half the year in juve and the other half in the bathroom. In lieu of going with someone you've never heard of, they'll go with someone you wish you've never heard of to provide depth along the O-Line.

Round 2: Much like my attempt to rank the top five pro quarterbacks (coming next week), things get a little dicey in the two-spot. The fans are looking for management to pick up a wide receiver who broke his leg two years ago but has tremendous upside (see Frederick Mitchell, UCLA), but there's better money on them picking up a stocky DT with a "great motor" (aka eating problem). Just to get you ready for this one, sometime in the near future, possibly as late as training camp, a reporter is going to ask Andy Reid "It seems as if you still haven't addressed the wide receiver position. Do you have any plans to pick up another starter before the season starts?" And here's Andy's reply, so you'll be ready: "We're really excited to have Todd (Pinkston) back in the lineup. We missed him last year and are thrilled about what he brings to our offense." At least now you'll have your air sick bag ready for the press conference.

Round 3: Time to get defensive! The birds use their third round pick on an undersized outside linebacker to plug holes on special teams. John Harbaugh meets him personally at the Greyhound station on Filbert.

Round 4: The Eagles have three picks in the fourth round thanks to trades last year with Dallas and Indy, which nearly cause Tom Heckert to die of excitement. This is great for the fans because rather than pick up one guy you've never heard of, we get three guys you've never heard of, one of which won't make the team!

Round 5: Two picks here, and we're getting ready to pick up the next AJ Feely (did you know he's on San Diego now?), in hopes of flipping this pick for second or third rounder in 2009. Unfortunately the Dolphins now have Nick Saban running the show with Dave Wannstedt in Pittsburgh (that's the University of), which is approximately equal trading in your Huffy two-speed for an Aston Martin with all the James Bond accoutrements. So we'll have to fleece someone else when the time comes (I'm thinking Detroit).

Round 6: Perfect time for Andy to dip into his BYU contacts and come up with someone that you've definitely never heard of unless you are:
1. Andy Reid
2. From Provo
3. Insane (see #2)

Round 7: Nothin' says lovin' like a late round bruising running back, so here we go. Hope you've enjoyed the vacation from my nonsense.

Tuesday, April 18

Uh Oh. more playoff predictions

So they made it. It looks like they've got the same goalie as last year. And hell, they even finished better than I expected. They've got a fighting chance, and you never know, someone might knock off the Red Wings before they get the chance to win the Cup for the billionth time (probably not though). So here's my first round predictions. If you don't agree with me, make a comment. Also, bite me.


1. Ottawa vs Tampa Bay---The only chance the Bolts have of winning this match up is if the Senators players all fall asleep on the beach and wake up with 3rd degree sun tan burns. They're going down hard, and I'm going to love ever last salty second.

2. Carolina vs Montreal---Sorry to say it Habs, but the Cup might go to another perennial hockey powerhouse this year, Carolina. Wait, that doesn't make any sense on about 10 levels. But yeah, the Hurricanes are good, a true threat to win it all, and they have Rod Brind'amour! Brindy! What a dude.

3. New Jersey vs New York Rangers---This is sort of tough to pick. The Rangers were the better team for the first 2/3rd's of the season, but the return of Elias sparked the supremely evil, trap creating, spawn of Satan Devil's back to life. Obviously Brodeur is still god of the underworld, and the Rangers have....well a bunch of overpaid brats. They had a goalie, but he's gotten hurt and faltered. Gotta go with experience on this one, Devils.

4. Buffalo vs Philadelphia---Obviously my heart says the Flyers. However, the Sabres just had their number all season. BUT, experience is what matters in the playoffs, and the Flyers just have tons more. Either way, I don't see this one going any less than 7, which doesn't bode well for either team.


1. Detroit vs Edmonton---I'm not gonna waste any of our time with this one.

2. Dallas vs Colorado---Oh man do these teams hate each other. Dallas was my childhood love, being the current home of the former North Stars, the greatest team in the history of hockey. Colorado had a topsy turvy season, and the Stars pretty much dominated, outside of the Red Wings, the whole conference. Should be a tough one, but the edge goes to the Stars, they just have more talent.

3. Calgary vs Anaheim---The Flames were great all season, but the Mighty Ducks pulled maybe the best comeback, turn around this season possibly ever in pro hockey. Their goalie is hot, the team is on a roll, and I like the upset in this one.

4. Nashville vs San Jose---Tough one to pick, and while Nashville has been a good team all year, they've faltered of late, while San Jose has been consistently, well...consistent. I like the Sharks in this one.

So there it is. Pretty straight forward, only a couple upsets. But hell, we haven't seen playoff hockey in a long time. I would say i'm excited, but honestly, this is when the gut-wrenching nervousness sets in. If the Flyers don't make it out of the first round AT LEAST, I might just have to end it all.