Author Archive

Can I get a chance?

Posted: March 15, 2013 by arayegee in GBLT, High School Sports, NCAA

Today I learned a few interesting things.

1. Transgender refers to someone whose identity differs than the biological sex at birth

2. Transsexual is someone who has transitioned or transitioning from one sex to another

3. A transvestite is an archaic term, but now refers to one who cross-dressing. A transvestite does not necessarily have to be homosexual or bisexual.

I got this info from Sterling Washington, who also let me know that DC Public Schools are in the processing of writing legislation that would allow transgender students to participate in sports specific to the gender they identify with. In laymans terms, if 17-year old Paul wears a dress and sees himself as a Paulette, he would be able to play on the girls high school basketball team. I think what DC has done to create equal opportunities for the GLBT community is rivaled only by San Francisco. Creating an environment where people can feel respected and included in whatever they choose to do is great, as long as its not hurting anybody. Which is precisely why I think this is a terrible decision.

Let me be clear: this isn’t a hate bashing article.  I’ve played with gay teammates and I’ve coached gay players, and I view them the same as I would view a white NFL running back or an albino squirrel: initially perplexed, but quickly accepting when I realize you’re just going about your business.  How a person lives off the field doesn’t bother me as long it doesn’t affect the rest of the team, but there’s a big difference between my experiences and what DCPS is trying to do.

My gay teammates and players still identified as men, both biologically and emotionally. Outwardly, they weren’t the ‘flamboyant’ type often portrayed on reality TV or gossip blogs. Dressed like a normal guy would, too. You wouldn’t catch them in dresses or heels. At the end of the day, they were men playing on a men’s team…and they happened to be attracted to men.

A transgender teammate? Now thats a little tricky. Emotionally and psychologically, I could identify myself as a woman. But my self-identity isn’t going to change my 6 foot 2, 215 pound athletic frame. If I was a high school student and asked to play for the women’s basketball team, I’d average 45 points a game and thats not because of my high basketball IQ or skill. I have a genetic advantage over everybody on the court, and that would be the case with most men who played a sport designated for women.  Im not saying that I think a man is going to automatically dominate every woman’s sport simply by showing up, but name me a sport where naturally being faster, stronger, quicker, and having less body fat is a disadvantage.  Allowing this to happen is bad news for everybody involved.  Lets say Paulette, my imaginary case study athlete, is actually a dominant basketball player, good enough to earn college scholarships…scholarships that were initially intended for players who were born women. What if one of those overlooked women happened to be one of Paulette’s teammates? The recruiting process for every sport is a virtual meat market, and there’s not many better ways I to stand out as a college prospect than being a biological man competing against biological women. I cant see how that isn’t an unfair advantage, and I’d really like to talk to someone who can argue against that. Yeah, there are gender reassignment surgeries, but its very unlikely that a high school student can afford that. Even if they can afford the pills, who says they’ll take them? If that athlete is aware of their genetic advantage, WHY would they take them?

The locker room situation is going to be the icing on the cake. How comfortable will athletes feel showering and dressing around their transgender teammates? God bless the coach who has to deal with a locker room full of teenage guys and their first experience with a transgender male. Its a recipe for disaster, and according to DC  Human Rights Act, you have to allow a transgender male to use the mens bathroom. I see bullying and sexual abuse written all over that. No sir.

You want your daughter getting posted up by her?

You want your daughter getting posted up by her?

Look, I’m all for inclusion, but exclusivity is why we created Title IX.  If we are basing gender on one’s identity, we are falling into a slippery slope. As we grow as people, we begin to change how we view ourselves, and its usually unexpectedly. Who’s to say this won’t happen for a transgender athlete that suddenly wants to play women’s soccer after an identity crisis. Make the men sports for the men, and the women’s sports for the women.

 

This past weekend, I watched an Major League Lacrosse matchup between Denver and Long Island. Lacrosse was one of my favorite sports growing up as a kid, and its always brings back a fresh sense of nostalgia every time I get to see it on TV or in person. The game was in its earlier moments, and a Denver defenseman delivered a huge hit on a Long Island attack man. My reaction to the play didnt even come out before yellow laundry hit the field. Was the hit high? A little, so by the letter of the lacrosse rules, the call was legit. But once the play-by-play announcer made a reference to “the league taking a stance for concussion prevention”.Once the c-word came out of his mouth, I turned the channel.

I fully support the various league powers who are making the necessary steps to protecting players, particularly in the NFL. Every employer should make it their priority to protect their employees. Financially and morally, it seems like common logic. The problem with this logic is that the NFL, much like the MLL and the NHL, is no common sport.  They are some of the last sports that are truly contact sports, descendants of the times gladiators used to fight to the death in the middle of the Coliseum. In no way do I want to see some guy in the middle of Soldier Field with a spear fighting an actual bear (maybe they should do that during halftime, or whenever Chicago’s offense is sputtering*), but many fans and current players seem to be against turning their league into a watered down version of the sport they were introduced to as kids. On that same historical context, football used to be played with leather helmets. Players were not the physical specimens they are now, but that didnt stop them from hitting their opponents full speed. Hockey players, some going with the old school helmet that has no facemask, go full speed into each other constantly. Changing a few rules, and throwing out suspensions is not going to change the culture of a sport that is predicated on violence. Medical concerns be damned, when you sign up for boxing, and you get hit in the head, you write that off as an occupational hazard. The same thing should go for other contact sports.

What this new “concern” over concussions has marred several sports that thrive on their fans’ thrill [lust] for violence. NASCAR fans go to races to see crashes. Boxing and UFC fans go to matches to see knockouts. Football fans go to games to see….touchdowns? Lets not fool ourselves here. If scoring was the first thing on football fans’ mind, they’d be basketball fans. The “Jacked Up” Segment of Monday Night Football Countdown was a collection of the biggest hits.

How do you make football, or any contact sport, safer? Unless you change the very complexion of the sport, you cant. The same reason you cant make boxing any safer or politics any less corrupt. For goodness sake, we are talking about professional sports. If this concussion fiasco gets any worse, then we are on the verge of having to sit through  seasons of contact sports that are officiated by referees who are hair-trigger happy with throwing that dreaded helmet-to-helmet

flag. Its no wonder flopping became such a problem in the NBA soon after the competition committee made increased scoring a priority. The game was being played too rough. People dont want to see low scoring games, that won’t fill up arenas. We need to appeal to a broader audience.

This hit is legal. It also mirrored the hit I saw in the DEN/Long Island game. Shame.

News flash, NFL: if you gain a huge mainstream audience, but lose your hardcore followers, you have about a 5-10 year window of prosperity before your company completely folds on itself. Its happened with the NHL, the WWE, even with countless musicians. It will happen to you as well.

Im not saying take the necessary precautions to keep the players safe, but don’t mess up the integrity of the game. Calling a flag on any play that seems dangerous looking is complete overkill. Monitor the aggressiveness, but do not eliminate it. If you want to keep your head concussion-free, then I suggest you not play football. And if you want to remove the risk of concussions in football, lacrosse, and hockey, the only way to do that is remove the helmets entirely.  And even then, its still a possibility. Its a physical sport. I suffered a concussion a month ago in flag football.Flag.

We watch these sports subconsciously because they are our modern day super heroes. They are doing something, enduring things that most people on the earth can’t. When that playing field is leveled, what were once superhuman performances seem pedestrian. And damnit, Im not paying to watch pedestrians play.

Before you watch The Avengers, read this first

Posted: May 4, 2012 by arayegee in NFL

Its 3:24 on a Friday morning, I have a seemingly insurmountable things to do starting at 8:30 am, which includes an early morning workout that at this point might be skipped, and I still have taken time to write this post up. I will be pissed for making this decision for quite possibly the entire weekend, but it must be done.

I Just left from the theaters to see Marvel’s The Avengers, and me and fellow ManCaver DontbeSkerritt both agreed about 20 minutes into this film that it was already in the ranks of best superhero movie. This movie has a running time of two hours and 23 minutes, which gives you an idea of how small a sample we are working with.  The people reading this blog are likely fans of these big budget action films, or you might just be a young lady who’s trying to figure out why her man is literally foaming at the mouth to go see this movie. Either way, you want to keep reading on.

This movie was magnificent. Everything that you would expect out of a movie like this it delivered threefold. I went into the theater worrying about the scores in the NBA playoff games. I left not giving a crap if I even saw highlights. I wont give away any spoilers, mainly because there really aren’t any. Its a superhero flick, if you don’t know by now that the good guys eventually win, then you’re a moron.  What I will say is that every superhero’s power is on full display from start to finish.  Thor was going bonkers with that hammer, the Iron Man had a plethora of different projectiles weapons coming out of every part of his suit, Hawkeye and Black Widow for not have any superpowers had some pretty cool highlights throughout, Captain America and that shield did damage, and The Hulk kicked a whole lot of ass.

You might consider this a blog made purely on the thrill of the moment, or that this movie was just another hook to get us into watching an endless amount of sequels. You might dismiss this as just another guy movie you have to go to because he sat through Say Yes to the Dress or Khloe and Lamar a countless amount of times. You might think the pedestrian storyline is just a set up for the CGI guys to have a field day with the protagonists powers, or that the whole movie was just an elaborate form of propaganda used to validate the government’s need for nuclear arms (that’s for the Conspiracy Theory folks out there).

Well, Mr. or Mrs. Critic, here’s the thing about all that.

Shutup.

It was great.

Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 92% fresh tomato rating. The other 8% forgot to pick up their 3D glasses because they were too tired or stoned. But I don’t want you to watch it because I said it was good, or some website did. Go watch it yourself and you can tell me what you think. Dont worry, Ill wait.

By the way, try getting there early. The previews are quite cool. I have a feeling many will be frequenting the theaters this year.

..Oh yea, on a quick sports note. Rest in Peace, Junior Seau. You were a hero as well, on and off the field.

Saaaaaame ole Redskins

Posted: March 15, 2012 by arayegee in NFL

Before I go ham on my team (as I did last year) about their terrible decision making, let me applaud them for their trade to get the #2 overall pick in this year’s draft. I cant wait to wear a  RGIII jersey to work. Unless, of course, the Colts are pulling of the coup of all time and pick Robert Griffin III and leave us with Matt Leina—- err, Andrew Luck.

But free agency, once again, turns out to be the undoing of a franchise that has been historically awful in this category.  The acquisition of three notable wide receivers is a direct result of RG3 hype, which at face value looks great. But lets take a step back and look at what the ‘Skins really got.

Pierre Garcon

If your prize free agent acquisition is a #2 receiver who has never gained 1000 yards in a season, known for his average route running and iffy ball catching abilities, there is a problem. Yes, he’s 27. But that’s the problem, Pierre is in his prime and is all he has to show for playing four years with Peyton Manning and understudy to Reggie Wayne is a very pedestrian body of work. I like the guy, but there is no way you pay a second rate receiver this much money. Is second rate a bit harsh? I tell you what, name the top 20 receivers in the NFL, and I dare you to put Pierre Garcon in that list.

 

Josh Morgan

Great player at Virginia Tech, decent player in the NFL. In his four years, he has 1764 receiving yards. Was he having a decent season before he got injured in San Francisco last year? Absolutely. Over 5 games, he caught 15 balls for 220 yards and 1 touchdown. Which rounds out to be about a 3 catch, 44 yard player. Ok. San Fran wanted him back, but thats only because Braylon Edwards was older, always injured, and wasn’t a good fit with their offense. If both of these players were at full strength, who do you think the Niners would really want to keep?

"I dont do this catching thing much, but Im sure its enough to get signed by your team."

Eddie Royal

Granted this guy hasn’t officially signed, but I will still give my two cents. Royal is probably the most complete receiver of the three, but giving him the eye test I experience deja vu.  5’10, 185 slot guy who can play, and would work well in Shanny’s offense. But he just adds to the crowded depth chart of #2 receivers again, and if he gets signed and becomes the best wideout, then the same WR issue in DC are just renewed: a #2 (Santana Moss) masquerading as a #1.

Much to the joy of then-Raider, now-Redskin CB DeAngelo Hall, Eddie Royal will be in DC.

‘Wide receiver by committee’ is a term often used to describe a marginal group of wideouts who are on a potent offense. I can guarantee that of these ‘committees’ there has been a clear cut #1 WR.

2011 – Giants – Victor Cruz

2006- present Saints – Marques Colston

Patriots 2007 – Randy Moss

Patriots 2008 – 2011 Wes Welker

Just to name a few. The other common denominator between teams that succeed with a so-called ‘WR by committee’ is that they have all-world quarterbacks to get them the ball.  So here’s to hoping that Mr. Griffin becomes the QB that Washington hopes he will be. If you ask me, all that money to get three marginal receivers couldve been spent on a straight up STUD in free agency. Couple that with the fact that this year’s WR class is loaded, I really wonder what the front office is thinking.

Mark Calaway: Twilight of an American Hero

Posted: February 29, 2012 by arayegee in Wrestlemania, WWE

His government name may not ring a bell, but his stage name is one of the most recognizable in the history of sports entertainment. His slow walk down to the ring is as ominous and spine-tingling as the man himself. And his music is unmistakable. When that bell gong rings, its no question as to who is coming out. Since Stone Cold’s retirement, The Rock’s bolt to Hollywood, and Triple H’s new corporate role, Mark Calaway, better known as The Undertaker, has held the torch for what is remaining of  the infamous Attitude Era. For the past twenty years, he has been respected by his peers, feared by his opponents, and revered by the fans of the WWE.Since his WWE debut in 1990, he has been a dominating force in the wrestling industry. A 6’10, 300 pound giant with the agility and grace as a luchador and as powerful as anyone to step into the ring.  Countless World titles, Heavyweight championships, and Tag Team titles fill his resume.  His undefeated Wrestlemania streak of 19 wins and 0 losses is considered one of pro wrestling’s greatest accomplishments. To put it into perspective, his Wrestlemania victory total is equal to the amount of games won by the Washington Redskins over the past 3 seasons.

Many people wondered if The Undertaker would ever slow down. His finesse, his work ethic, his brutality, his aura were unshakable his entire career. He’s wrestled and defeated the likes of Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, King Kong Bundy, Ric Flair, The Rock, and even CM Punk.  Had you seen him in 1994, you would have thought, in 2011, he’ hadnt aged a year. He has been THAT dominant.

The way the entire arena would go dark, and as the lights came back on, he would appear in the ring, staring down his helpless, unsuspecting prey.  The way he’d roll his eyes in his head, taunting his enemies.  The way he could  revive from a vicious beating in the middle of a match, deliver his own beatdown, and walk off victorious.

Wrestlemania 27 proved to be the first time we saw The Undertaker unmasked as Mark Calaway. The match, now on Youtube, was against an aging Triple H, and it started off just as violently as it ended.  (FYI: Wrestling isnt fake, its scripted. Just like the NBA was for the past 15 years. The athleticism, the talent, the precision, and the pain, is real. ) The Undertaker prevailed, but was carried out in a stretcher. He took punishment that you could tell he wasnt ready for, and  within minutes of the match, everybody knew it. The Deadman was a mere mortal in the ring, and his usually ice cold demeanor was replaced with a one of desperation.

This Wrestlemania 28 Hell in a Cell rematch against Triple H will likely be the last wrestling match of Mark Calaway’s historic career. His end, win or lose, will be the end of the the Attitude Era as we know it.  Those of us in our early to mid 20s grew up watching will no longer recognize the faces in the ring after this epic event. Both Triple H and The ageless “Phenom” has seen better days, and their 46 year old bodies know it. In fact, Id bet that ‘Taker’s body has known it for sometime now, its us that’s getting the late memo. All that the Undertaker has left to fight for is the preservation of his hallowed streak, and judging from last year’s fight, hes willing to go past what his body can take. Whatever happens in this match, lets pay homage to the Deadman.

“She Wasnt With Me Shooting In the gym!”

Posted: January 23, 2012 by arayegee in Current Events, NBA

The title for this post came from an Aubrey Graham line. This, combined with the fact that this blog has nothing to do with the actual  game of basketball, slightly blows me on several fundamental levels.

Last Friday, instead of pre-game excitement over the NFL conference championships, I logged in to Twitter and found myself reading a slew of tweets that could’ve started the biggest gender war since Susan B. Anthony n ’em.  What caused this uproar? Kobe and Vanessa Bryant’s impending divorce, his alleged $75 million shell-out to Vanessa, not including alimony and child support . I politely and diplomatically (I cant emphasize those words enough) asked what both sides thought about the situation, and several women responded (vented, however you want to see it) as such:

“it’s a lot of things that happen in life that just aren’t fair. like how men who sleep w mad women are so cool but when a woman enjoys sex w more than a couple guys she’s a hoe….and when a rich athlete cheats & has no prenup she gets half—- lol. there’s lots of things that aren’t fair, so lay off of Vanessa!”

“men fail to realize that when you mess w our most prized possession (or hearts) we (some) will go after yours (your money)”

“Why why y’all so passionate anyways? half y’all don’t got more than the women u lay up w so trust me, you prolly won’t have #kobeproblems

“breach that contract there are penalties. like breaking any contract. get over it. he shouldve had a prenup”

“vows r a covenant relationship between u, ur mate n God. The moment u break that covenant u should pray material possessions r all that go. Sin. Painful child birth. Multiple langs. Fire. A flood. All consequences that came bc of a broken covenant.

” I don’t feel sympathetic for Kobe at all. Maybe I don’t agree with giving 75mil and 3 mansions, but Vanessa Bryant certainly deserved a lump sum…People (mainly dudes) are sayin that Drake line “she wasn’t with him in the gym” True. She also wasn’t with him in the bed with all those women that got him into the place. What’s killing me the most are the men who are callin Vanessa a hoe & gold digger. She is his wife. Mother of his 2 kids & even stood by him when he was accused of being a rapist.”

“Im not a fan of giving up 50% of your assets that wasn’t acquired together due to divorce, but I also don’t support letting someone walk away scotch-free for consciously & selfishly breaking up a marriage. Pay up! And unfortunately for Kobe, in the state of Cali…that can be up to 50% of your assets. Maybe he’ll make better decisions next time.”

“a) when you are valuable you protect your worth. he’s the fool for not having a prenup.
b) “you wasn’t with me shooting in the gym” devalues a wife’s role.
c) break my heart, i break your pockets –PERIOD.
d) WHY is Vanessa getting 1/2 so surprising. It’s what happens when you get divorced. even if her 1/2 is MILLIONS.
pea brained niggas are tripping. and are probably single. or dogs, themselves.”

It was all good a week ago.

This goes on for a while, but you kind of get the gist of it. Womenfolk have no remorse when it comes to Kobe’s adulterous ways. In the words of a 90’s California gangbanger, COME UP OUT THEM POCKETS, CUH!
The men, on the other hand had a different perspective.
“kobe got some secrets he willing to pay for…”
“She only ‘reconciled’ after the rape for a bigger payout down the road’
“If she knew about all these women, why didnt she leave earlier. #paperchasinhoe”
anytime a woman get a nice lump sum of money like that with no argument or prenump….its bonifide hush money. #iwonderwhy
“”B*itch, you wasnt with me shooting in the gym!” x about 1000, seriously.
As if she wasnt out here doing her thing on the side too. Smh”
Im not writing this blog to come to some resolution for each side, nor will I try to the role of relationship guru.  We all know what “The Three C’s” are, and if you dont, then read about it.
What I do notice is that women are concerned about the actions of the men, and men are concerned about the motive behind the reaction from the woman.  Personally, I think Kobe should have listened to his parents when they said to not marry the girl in the first place, that he was too young and immature. In Vanessa’s case, nobody really knows her motives, but something is quite fishy when you wait this long after so many alleged women. (109 women is okay, but 110? Oh, thats my breaking point, Kobe. This marriage is over.) Its weird that neither side made much mention about the kids. But I guess money talks the loudest in this situation, right?
The reason I really wrote this blog is to show how assumptions truly make asses out of us all. We dont know that Kobe slept with over 100 women, we just read about through unverified stories. We dont know how much hes paying Vanessa, we just saw a number and ran with it. Same thing happens in the Tiger Woods/Elin fiasco. We dont really know if Vanessa made a home for Kobe, loved him, nurtured, supported him and their children. She might have been trifling. For all we know, the entire marriage could have been as Hollywood as Kim Kardashian’s, just longer. The fact is that we really dont know, but judging from these emotionally charged quotes, we really do care.
Caring passionately about something that you know little about is how terrible things happen.
ManCave rule #913: Do not talk what you do not know. Violation of these rules will result in immediate BTTK status or worse.
Lastly, before I finish off, this was the one response I got on Twitter that resonated with me.
Alimony doesn’t heal a broken heart.

For the past decade, the world has gone crazy over one vampire film series. You know, the one with the teenage male vampire and a high school girl falling in love. And the vampires’ reaction to direct sunlight isnt death, but a sparkling of the skin. And the werewolves arent humanoid, freakishly strong, blood-chilling killers, just enormous huskies. And the love interest of the protagonist vampire isnt another vampire, but a high school girl. Considering the fact that vampires live for hundreds of years, this is extremely creepy. Meanwhile, purists of both horror creatures have been given a respite from the Twilight bonanza with Underworld, a action series about the history and war between the vampires and werewolves, known as Lycans.

In Theatres 1/20/2012

If you havent seen the first three films, let me sum them up for you quickly. Girl vampire kills lycans. Lycans kill vampires. Girl vampire meets male. Male becomes lycan-vampire hybrid. Girl vampire and hybrid fall in love. Each side wants to kill them. They beat everybody to the punch. Its like Twilight, only realer, darker, sleeker, and sexier. Oh, and very generous with the blood spilling.

Im leaving out some key characters, substantial plot development, and a WICKED prequel film (Underworld: Rise of the Lycans), but its there.

The fourth installment of this film series, Underworld:Awakening comes out on Friday, where the main character Selene (previously mentioned girl vampire, who’s basically Laura Croft with fangs) finds herself captured by government officials who find out about both vampires and lycans. They, in typical human form, want to study them, utilize them to the fullest extent, then kill off both species. Selene breaks free and tries to get to the bottom of this conspiracy, all while looking for her long lost lycan love, Michael (the male lycan-vampire hybrid).

For those who think this movie might be one of those series that gets worse with each sequel, dont worry. The first three movies have gotten better along the way, and even if it does suck, at least you get to see Kate Beckinsale in a bodysuit. If you have the time, watch the first three movies before you hit the movies Friday. It’ll get you caught up on the storyline and if youre in the DC area, you wont have to sit through a Wizards game.The one the

Fellas, if you take your girl to see this, just know you might have to sit through a rom-com in return. I can pretty much guarantee that the ladies will either love this movie or hate it with a passion. So, plan accordingly and get Just Wright next week.

Heres a preview of the upcoming movie, along with an intense fight scene showing Selene  fighting a hybrid vampire and Michael fighting a pretty savage werewolf. Enjoy, and Ill see you at Magic Johnson theater! Get your popcorn ready!

Divisional Playoffs Analyzed

Posted: January 12, 2012 by arayegee in NFL

New Orleans Saints vs. San Francisco 49ers – This game was brilliantly broken down by my fellow ManCaver this week, so Ill be brief. Much has been made about the how this game will not be played on the fast track FieldTurf Drew Brees & Co. are accustomed to playing on. Considering that they average 25.8 PPG on grass surfaces, Im not sure if thats going to be the real issue. 26 points will win the game against San Francisco. However,  the Saints’ unstoppable scoring machine goes travels face an NFC West opponent with a tough defense and a physical running back. Does this sound eerily familiar? If not, take a look at this clip from the last time New Orleans took a trip to the Wild Wild west in the postseason.

All year I have called San Fran a one and done playoff team. Playoff inexperience, no sure fire way to put points on the board, and a NFC West schedule that all but guarantees 6 wins. Their defense is intense, but they havent faced an offense like New Orleans. The Harbaughs are good in the playoffs, but I must stick to my guns.

WINNER: SAINTS

Houston Texans vs Baltimore Ravens – This game will be closer than people think. And when I say close, I mean the Houston Texans are about to get hammered. Not necessarily on the scoreboard, but the game will not be as close as the score may suggest. The Ravens won the regular season matchup at Baltimore by 15, and I expect the margin of victory to be less, but this is the playoff  Ravens. The same Ravens that not too long ago beat the brakes off of everyone’s favorite Patriot team in Foxboro. Add the fact that the Texans are 3-3 against opponents with a record of .500 and above, two of those wins against the Falcons and the Bengals (cough, cough, fraudulent), and you’re looking at a long day for Houston.

The only way I see Houston pulling this game out is if they a.) match the intensity and physicality for four quarters b.) keep T.J Yates clean and c.) make Ray Lewis go east and west and not north and south.

WINNER: RAVENS

New York Giants vs. Green Bay Packers – With human trafficking being such a problem in this day and age, its no wonder why so many football fans are currently slaves of the moment. The Giants are peaking at the right time and playing with a high level of confidence, but we’ve seen this Giants team before after Week 4 when they improved to 3-1. We saw this team after the Week 9 Patriots win. We saw this after both wins over the Cowboys, and even after a loss in Green Bay. This is the mark of an inconsistent team, and inconsistent teams dont eliminate defending Super Bowl champs. The glimmer of hope that will keep the Giants’ upset hopes alive rests on the shoulders on their defensive line, which needs to play out of their minds to make up for that god awful secondary of theirs.

Green Bay needs to get better play from their defense this postseason, and as long as that offense doesnt lay a Kansas City egg, they should get ready to for the NFC Championship game.

WINNER: PACKERS

Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots– Last week Denver pulled off the upset of the year by ousting last years AFC Champions. Now they go to Foxboro and face a team that beat them soundly in the regular season. The good thing about last week’s  is that the Patriots have to play Tim Tebow honest, which will do one of two things: open up big passing lanes or keep a man out of the box to defend their Broncos’ dangerous rushing attack. Couple that with a wishy washy Patriot defense, and I see another big game for Tim Tebow.The Bronco defense, on the other hand, is coming off a game where they gave up 23 points to a hobbled Roethlisberger and a Mendenhall-less Steeler offense. This isn’t surprising considering how anemic their defense has been this entire year, which will be what could ultimately cost them this game. Tom Brady can still methodically march down the field and put up 40 points a game. Denver has no answer for Gronkowski, and if this turns to be a shootout, Id put my money on the Pats.

"All that time you spend praying, you should ask God for a better throwing motion"

History has shown us that the Patriots havent won a playoff game since the AFC Championship in 2007. And all the pressure is on the Patriots to win. Does that count for something? Absolutely. This game goes down to the wire and (big breath) Tebow finds a way to pull it out again.

 

WINNER: BRONCOS

Analyzing Wildcard Weekend

Posted: January 5, 2012 by arayegee in NFL
Tags:

Playoff season is here and its time to really nitpick on teams. Wildcard teams have had a stroke of luck recently, with the Giants and Packers both winning it all as 6 seeds in the past five years. Lets see how this weekend’s match ups look.

 

Atlanta Falcons vs. New York Giants– This game comes down to which version of each team shows up. For the Giants, you can either have the team that showed up against the Cowboys in 2008-esque form, or the inconsistent group that we’ve seen during the entire regular season. The Eli-Cruz combination has been working well lately, but the Giants will need to have Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs both playing at high levels to keep defenses honest.

Show of hands: Who still hasnt won a playoff game yet?

The city of Atlanta might need to check their water supply, because their most popular sports franchise (Falcons & Hawks) have a knack for being unceremoniously knocked out of the playoffs after a strong regular season. If this trend continues, then it will be a long day for Matt Ryan & Co.  Atlanta finally has an identity on offense, but their stingy, undersized defense may have trouble stopping the run against the physical New York offensive line. The feeling is, expect more of the same playoff Falcons to show up against an overachieving Giants team.

Winner: GIANTS

 

 

Cincinnati vs Houston: The definition of average: When you’re the best of the worst, or the worst of the best. This, ladies and gentleman, are the 2011 Cincinnati Bengals in a nutshell. They beat the teams they’re supposed to beat, and lose to the teams they’re supposed to lose to. This year, the Bengals went 0-7 against teams with a winning record, including a one point loss to the T. J Yates-led Texans at home. I don’t see them winning this game, but if they do it rest on the shoulders of Andy Dalton. He must keep this offense on schedule, and the Bengal defense cannot allow T. J Yates to throw for another 300 yards again, or it’ll be one and done for Cincy. What makes this game interesting is that neither team has any true playoff experience, outside of the Bengal players who were there during their two runs in 2006 and 2010, both resulting in wild card exits. As well as Houston has done with a group of injured warriors, the magic will end this weekend. Plus, its become hard to root against an AFC North rookie quarterback. Flacco and Roethlisberger, anyone?

Winner: BENGALS
Detroit vs New Orleans: New Orleans is arguably the hottest team in the playoffs right now. They are undefeated at home, and they have a quarterback who threw the equivalent of 3 miles this year.  Ranking 1st in passing yard and 6th in rushing yard, they have the most explosive offense in the playoffs.  Detroit, for all they have done this year, are only three years removed from an 0-16 season. NOBODY on this team knows how to win. Their overall playoff inexperience will be their death knell. And for all that’s said about their defensive line, they’re 23rd in the league in stopping the run. Last week this defense gave up 480 passing yards to MATTHEW FLYNN.

Unless the Saints’ secondary have a brain fart and forget to cover Calvin Johnson, the Lions’ only true threat offensively, dont expect anything less than a blowout.

Winner: SAINTS

 

Pittsburgh vs Denver: Denver’s offensive struggles will not magically be changed in one week. What you saw last week against Kansas City is exactly who they are.  Their quarterback wont become a great passer over the week, so they have to rely on their running attack. Coincidentally, they host a Steelers team who’s defense is geared to stop the run, but susceptible to the pass when spread out.  With safety Ryan Clark out this game, the Broncos would be be smart to open the field up and expose the Pittsburgh D. By doing that, they’ll be exposing their own fatal flaw: the arm of Tim Tebow. This sounds like the prelude to a long day for the Broncos, and it will be if they go the conventional route. Going conventional didnt spark a 7-3 run to get them into the playoffs, nor will it give them the franchise’s first playoff victory since the days of Elway. They will have to establish the run, and look for play action passes to open up the defense. Elway is right, Tebow needs to pull the trigger more.

By the time you finish reading this post, the ball will be leaving his fingertips.

Not much needs to be said about this Pittsburgh team and their playoff pedigree. They have found the cure to the Super Bowl hangover and were a Baltimore loss away from being the #2 seed. How effective Big Ben is with that high ankle sprain remains to be seen against a defense that has two bookends that can rush the passer, but its up to him and the offense to put the game out of reach to keep from Denver pulling off one of their inexplicable comeback victories.

If the Broncos pull this off, the National Guard needs to high tail it to Pittsburgh ASAP because that city is going to be burned to the ground.

 

Winner: Broncos *ducks and hides from Steelers fans*

 

 


 


 

Luck-y #1? I think not.

Posted: January 3, 2012 by arayegee in College Football

"And with the first pick in the draft, the Colts select Stanford QB.....John Elway as their new General Manager."

Andrew Luck has had an amazing college career. As far as passers go, you wont find many who have been as good as this guy. The kid has the physical attributes (6’4, 235), the statistics scouts and fans drool over (37 TDs, 3517 yards, 71.3% completion rate), and for the Tebowers out there, he’s a winner (28-8 career record). Since the end of his sophomore year he has been heralded as the #1 overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft. After going 27-31 for 347 yards and 2 TDs against Oklahoma State, he cemented the thoughts of all his supporters and left many to wonder if there really is a quarterback this year that’s more NFL ready than this kid. With all that being said, Im just still not sold on the guy.

Yesterday night was the third time I saw Luck play this year, and I saw a few things that have me worried about if he is really the quarterback we think he is. Firstly, Luck has benefited from playing with one of the best running games, or should I say offensive lines in college football. Do we remember 2009 Heisman finalist Toby Gerhart? He was a monster in college, and is Stefan Taylor, and both are products of an great front five. This may sound crazy, but Luck isnt the first thing you have to stop in order to keep the Cardinal offense. Its that running game that gave teams fits all year, accompanied by a devastating short passing game. If you ask me, a top NFL QB prospect should be THE person you need to worry about when game planning against them.  You dont believe me, then ask Oregon who they were primarily concerned about in last year’s BCS championship.  Or who Washington had to stop if they wanted an Alamo Bowl victory.It sure wasnt the running.

 

The fact these two are even being compared is just....

People see the next great signal-caller, I just see Matt Leinart 2.o, just another PAC-12 quarterback in a run oriented pro-style offense that has the luxury of shredding pitiful PAC 12 defenses week in and week out. Even their final two years in college are comparable, statistically. Matt leaned on a great running game, as does Luck. Matt faced pretty soft coverages as a result of his running game, as does Luck. Matt won a Heisman. Andrew didnt. Matt went in the league and tanked. Luck might follow suit. Andrew “lucked” up last night and got to face an Oklahoma State defense that is not exactly stout. Many of his passes were short dump offs followed by long runs after the catch, something a game manager can do if you ask me.

We also know who his former coach was, NFL coach of the year-to be Jim Harbaugh, who doubles as a CIA agent. Thats the only way I can explain Alex Smith’s transformation. He kidnapped the real Alex Smith, removed the ‘I really freaking suck at playing quarterback’ gene, and then cloned him. I guess the original Alex Smith escaped and found a way to clone himself and inhabit the bodies of Sam Brafford and Carson Palmer, but thats another story. The point is, the same magic Harbaugh used to improve Smith’s is the same thing he did with Andrew Luck. He took a simplified offense with a safe passing attack, and gave it to a quarterback that wouldnt start a fire in hell. What if the team that drafts him doesnt have such a quarterback friendly offense, or a strong O-line with a bull running back (ahem, 49ers)? I have a feeling that he wont be as effective working within the confines of an offense that requires him to be more daring in his throws (COLTS).  I really think he will be screwed. The expectations set for this guy are so high that he’s definitely going to be a bust. Cam Newton didnt have these pressures as a number #1 pick because many labeled him as a reach to even go first round. Whatever team that picks him should be patient enough to understand this guy will need at least 3-4 years to develop, if he ever does. The problem is, will any team wait that long?

He is no franchise savior, and he hasnt shown me that he has #1 NFL pick talent. There is no “it” factor with this guy, he just plays quarterback.

This may be sports blasphemy as of now, but Sucking For Luck just seems like Sucking…just to Suck some more.

 

 

 

 

 

Pause.