Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Who knew nothing happened in football for, like, a week and a half?

Or, at least that's the impression you'd get by reading this blog.

With all the topics that could get discussed (is Cassel really the next Tom Brady? can Brett Favre take the Jets to the Super Bowl? will Detroit find a way to blow a bigger lead than 17 points this year?), let's take a minute to consider the last few weeks for Donovan McNabb. First, two weeks ago the Eagles battled the mighty Cincinnati Bengals to a 13-13 tie. After the game, McNabb said that he had no idea a game could end in a tie. Which is mind-boggling. Like, I'd understand if my wife was unaware that NFL games could end in ties. I'd even understand if casual football fans didn't know. Christ, even people who regularly watch NFL games aren't always aware of the rules (for instance, a friend to remain nameless, until recently thought that if a punt returner called for a fair catch and then let the ball drop, the ball was live...yeah, not so much). But for an "all-pro" quarterback, the leader of the team, to not know the situation he's in? That's absurd. (And honestly, how is it that the coaching staff wasn't like, "Okay, Donovan, we need to get this ball in field goal range for a shot at winning this game; it is literally our last shot"?)

In the aftermath of McNabb's admission, there have been other players claiming they didn't know about the tie rule, some players saying that between 50 and 70% of the players probably didn't know, which I'd guess is between 30 and 50% overestimated.... My favorite part about the article is Hines Ward saying:
I thought we were the last team to do it when we played the Falcons. I thought you just played until you had a winner. It’s kind of weird that you can still tie ball games.
Well, Hines, you're right: you were the last team to do it in that the most recent game to end in a tie was the Steelers/Falcons game in 2002. If, however, you mean "last team" like "last team ever to possibly tie", then that would have required a rule change. And why someone would just assume there'd been a rule change is beyond me.

So anyway, "to tie or not to tie"... water under the bridge. Then, last weekend Andy Reid benches McNabb against the Ravens. At the time, the Eagles were down by just three points, 10-7, but for some reason, Reid felt that Kevin Kolb gave Philadelphia the best shot at winning the game. (Unfortunately, a 26-0 second half didn't play out that way.) Rochester and I have discussed the Mike Holmgren Coaching Tree's legacy of game mismanagement before, and these past few weeks have added a ton more footnotes to that argument. The "Kolb for McNabb hafltime adjustment" shows the sort of over- and insight that it's no wonder that... you know, actually a crack at his drugged up criminal kids is just too easy.

At this point, it'll be a miracle if either McNabb or Reid are back with the organization next season, let alone both. If one would be back, I guess it'd be Reid, but even that chance is pretty fat.

And speaking of fat, how incredible is it to watch Charlie Weis's continued woes at Notre Dame? The only thing better than that smug piece of "offensive genius" dog doo chalking up some of the worst seasons in the history of the University of Football in America is the fact that Regis Philbin and all of the other Golden Domer boostards are on the hook for another seven years and, like, $16 million! And with the economy the way it is, they'll be lucky if they can buy him out before about 2010.

Hey, now I know what I can be thankful for on Thursday!

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