I Hate Everything About This Stupid So-Called Scandal

I hate Roger Goodell, a sanctimonious prick who decided to get his Little Lord Napoleon act on with the NFL players and is facing some nice little backlash from not being as hard on teams as he is on players with the whole Patriots taping bit, going so far as to destroy the tapes and consider the matter “finished” even though anyone with half a brain knows the cover-up is almost always worse than the original crime.

Despite defending him and even mocking him, I hate Bill Belichick because he’s a curmudgeonly crumbum with an arrogance factor that’s off the charts. Oh, and he willingly broke the rules.

I hate Senator Arlen Specter because he’s another sanctimonious prick who has better things to be doing in the U.S. Senate rather than trying to hold Goodell’s feet to the fire and saying it’s in the public interest to know the NFL is clean and honest. How the good Republican senator from Comcast can talk about honesty and integrity (the man talked nothing but game about putting a check on President Bush regarding war strategy and civil liberties, and then folded faster than origami paper) is beyond my range of comprehension.

I hate Matt Walsh for allowing the whole “Pats taped the Rams before the 2002 Super Bowl” rumor to fester in the hope of trying to protect his own ass legally. The guy seems scuzzier than he lets on, particularly because he stole the tapes (let’s not forget that.)

I hate all the forms of sports media for labeling this whole matter “Spy-gate”, which allowed them to lapse into stupid cliche and continuing with the mockery of crucial points of American history by using the “-gate” suffix as poorly as the political media does.

Now, we have information about the tapes that Walsh turned over — and several teams were taped, including the Steelers in the AFC Championship game. Naturally, the senatorial asshole wants the taping jerk to testify in order to embarrass the front office prick, who will then be shamed into further punishment of the sideline fucknozzle (NYT columnist Harvey Araton is calling for Coach Hobo to get a year’s suspension.) The NFL, for its part, is saying none of the tapes show anything that’s actually new (well, what did you expect them to say?)

I’d love nothing more for this story to die. Yes, the Patriots broke the rules, and the NFL was too hasty in destroying the tapes initially. With that fuck-up by Lord Rog’s office, this load of crap now has a shelf life much longer than it should have been, and is now being driven by some completely unlikeable people on all sides.

Farewell, My Creation!

A sequel to this particular post. Scene: the dank, dark underground lab below an athletic facility in Foxborough. Doctor Hobo sits, facing his greatest creation as it lies on the table, for an uncomfortable decision.

Dr. Hobo: Such magnificence. I only wish I could have made more like you.
Troy Brown: Thank you, Doctor.
Dr. Hobo: How do you feel now, Troy? Is everything in working order?
Troy Brown: Yes, Doctor. (Sits up.) I am not sure whether I will be ready in time to help you wreak your revenge upon all who opposed you, but I will do my damnedest to see to it.
Dr. Hobo: Yes….about that. (Hesitates.) Troy, I have appreciated your loyal service: you are the final holdover from the years of the laid-back ninny and the short tenure of my mentor, the Gut. They bequeathed me you, whom I remade in my ultimate image, the player I wanted to see the most of.
Troy Brown: Yes, and I thank you daily for it, Doctor. I barely remember a time when we did not win.
Dr. Hobo: But, this is now where we must part. You must become a person outside of my grasp. There are things approaching over the horizon that I do not wish for you to be privy to or a part of.
Troy Brown: But, Doctor…Asante, Donte, and Randall have deserted you! Certainly there is room for me somewhere in this place, is there not?
Dr. Hobo: Ordinarily, there would be, but if I am to achieve perfection — finally, after having it snatched from my grasp by the Drill Sergeant, the gap-toothed one, and the bumbling Legacy Lackey in such cruel fashion — I have learned that I must completely sever all emotional connection. And you, Troy, are that last emotional connection, the one I have poured all my work into. It is time we grew apart. For both our sakes.
Troy Brown: (Looks down at the ground.) I cannot believe it. What will I do? How will I survive in the world of normal players?
Dr. Hobo: Use what I have taught you, if you still have another year in you — and you will thrive among the less dedicated. (Sniffles, holds back tears.) I cannot bear to look at you any longer. Wesley! Thomas!

(Tom Brady and Wes Welker appear behind Troy.)

Tom Brady: Your bidding, Doctor?
Dr. Hobo: Please, get Troy’s things. There is a car waiting above.
Tom Brady: They are already in the car, sir.
Wes Welker: I will drive him out.
Troy Brown: Doctor….NOOOOOO!

(Brady and Welker pick Troy up, begin to carry him out. Troy screams all the way to the door, the echoes drown out all the other sound in the facility.)

Dr. Hobo: He will have to fend for himself now. There was only so much I could do for him while managing my other….troubles. Fear me now, Goodell, and Specter, I will have my vengeance upon you.



Brown not likely to receive offer to return for 16th year [Boston Globe]

You Want Him, Nay, Need Him In That Slot

Essentially, Randy Moss re-signing with New England had to happen — not just for Moss and the work he’s done without question there, but for the health of Tom Brady’s passing stats and his game. Note that Donte’ Stallworth has taken his peripatetic ways to Cleveland, and several members of the Pats’ secondary have sought more money (Asante Samuel) or to return home (Randall Gay to the Saints) — which means that the offense will need to keep its high scoring ways going just to win, never mind about another attempt at perfection.

Moss clearly desires and thrives in environments where the concept of playing to win is foremost; where it is an embarrassment to lose — and that’s probably Coach Hobo’s preference (I’ve not watched a coach on TV who seems to despise losing as much as Belichick does; he stews.) Moss’ ability to envelop and catch anything in a five-yard radius made him the first truly elite WR Tom Brady ever had; Brady and Moss then became a lethal combination. If the Patriots had let Moss go (and did you seriously think they would?), we could have stuck a fork in them as far as Super Bowl hopes.

Re-signing Moss means the offense is still a serious threat, and that’s an absolute necessity when the defense is hemorrhaging players (and was just bending for the last half of last season anyway). Now, if they could move Moss and Wes Welker in and out of the slot at will…imagine the fuck-ups on mismatches.

Patriots re-sign Moss [Boston Globe]

The Pendulum Swing Is Complete.

If you look at the Atlanta Falcons’ offering of their head coaching job to Jaguars’ D-coordinator Mike Smith in and of itself, you’re likely to think one of several things:

  • Who the fuck is Mike Smith?
  • Has Arthur Blank gone crazy?
  • This franchise is destined to lose even more.

These are all justifiable reactions. Mike Smith is the defensive coordinator of the Jaguars in the same way that Rick Neuheisel was the offensive coordinator in Baltimore until recently — someone named to the position, but it looks like he had very little responsibility for the actual schemes despite calling the plays; that was on Jack Del Rio, a defensive specialist himself. And after the GM search landed a Patriots college scout to be the new general manager, this is the latest questionable move — never mind that the hire for a rebuilding team would not look good, especially with a bang-up defensive coordinator like Rex Ryan looking for a job.

But this would obscure an obvious trend. You hear a lot on ESPN and probably read a lot more about a GM or owner looking for a coach on the same page as they are when going through candidates. Tony Sparano is the new coach in Miami because he’s one of Bill Parcells’ boys; he knows how to work with him. John Harbaugh, despite never having coordinated anything outside of special teams in the NFL, was hired by the Ravens. Norv Turner just somewhat rehabbed his reputation in San Diego — after Chargers’ GM A.J. Smith got in such a spat with Marty Schottenheimer that Dean Spanos said he had to fire the coach. Mike Holmgren may be back for one more season, but by all appearances, that looks like it.

About 10-15 years ago, we were seeing an apex of the coach/GM phenomenon, with coaches amassing enough power and influence through victory to essentially control all aspects of football operations for pro teams; either they held GM titles or had simpatico execs as semi-figureheads/sounding boards in that spot. Mike Shanahan still has that to an extent with the Broncos; Holmgren got that when he went to Seattle, and had the GM label removed a few years back. Bill Parcells is in the front office after having that same power wherever he went post-Giants; he retired after clashing with Jerry Jones in Dallas, someone just as egotistical about the make-up of a football team as Parcells.

Bill Belichick is the only coach left who wields the kind of power that coaches held as all-knowing personnel men in the 90s (Scott Pioli is very good as a personnel guy, the Pats speak for themselves, but Coach Hobo holds the final say). What we are seeing now is the hiring of either complete newbies lacking comparative experience to former head coaches or the hiring of re-treads who are not seeking that final authority and decision making. The pendulum is now completely on the side of ownership and the front office folks they hire with regard to personnel and final say. It’s why you’ll never see Pete Carroll in the NFL again any time soon (not that he deserves that kind of power.) The old-school coaches that get mentioned every year (Bill Cowher, Schottenheimer) want and feel they have earned more say than some front office people are comfortable giving right now, never mind the money involved.

Thus, we have these complete unknowns as head coaches.

“My Creation, It Lives Again!”

It’s times like these where I wish I had any sort of skill with Photoshop or could farm it out (hint, hint to the reader base). Scene: The dank, dark depths of The Razor in Foxborough, where a crazed man, hunched over in his hooded sweatshirt and headband, without regard for the freezing temperatures, slaves in his workshop.

Doctor Hobo: Hmm, yes…so we have lost Roosevelt to a season-ending injury, with a linebacker corps exposed for being aged by that God-damned walrus and his trusty back-up quarterback. Adalius!
Adalius Thomas: Yes, Doctor?
Dr. Hobo: There is no need to panic, is there?
Adalius: No, Doctor. Vrabel is still intact, and Bruschi must simply soak for a week to restore his old bones. Junior appears to be a bit on the senior side this week, though.
Dr. Hobo: Good. You are young yet. I hope never to have to perform such miracles on you as I have had to do for those two. However, we must ensure the survival of our complete domination — the world demands it, I demand it, and we are capable of it!
Adalius: Yes, Doctor. How can we assist you in this endeavor?
Dr. Hobo: Revive the cyborg I had shut down in the corner twice this season. Get Richard to help you lift him out of the basement. (Resumes tinkering with soldering connections and large lithium battery.)
Adalius: Right away, sir. Seymour!

(Grabs lumbering Richard Seymour and heads to the metal storage units in the back of the basement. Richard Seymour skulks along to the back, where they retrieve a case marked “Chad Brown” and bring it to the Hobo.)

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