Ramble On Sports

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Posts Tagged ‘NFL’

Dez Bryant learns an expensive lesson

Posted by Bill Koch on September 29, 2010

Was it really worth it, Dez Bryant?

Was not carrying a set of shoulder pads really worth more than the average American citizen makes in a year?

Bryant, the Dallas Cowboys’ rookie wide receiver, got stuck with a $55,000 tab earlier this week at a Dallas steakhouse after having dinner with his teammates. The bill came to fellow receiver Roy Williams, who calmly handed it to Bryant and made it clear that this was payback for Bryant not following tradition during training camp and carrying Williams’ shoulder pads into the locker room after practice.

I know what some of you might be thinking – how could you possibly spend that much money on dinner? Like this – take a group of hungry football players, slap 30-ounce filets with a la carte fixings in front of them, offer them appetizers, desserts and bottles of accompanying wine that can run thousands of dollars and add in a generous tip worthy of such a group of millionaires. That $50K gets racked up pretty quickly.

Yes, we think it’s pretty disgraceful that a group of people would spend money like this while so many people are struggling financially and our government continues to run our economy into the toilet. Let’s suspend our own personal biases (and credit card debts) for the sake of this issue. We love that Bryant finally got put in his place after acting like a spoiled child and refusing Williams in training camp. For those of you who think that carrying a set of shoulder pads is unfair or hazing, we simply say this – grow up. It’s not so bad. Much worse has been done to people in the name of acceptance into a group. Bryant found out just how much worse it could be on his most recent night out at dinner, and we don’t think it could have happened to a nicer guy.

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Goodell now left to hand out Edwards discipline

Posted by Bill Koch on September 22, 2010

Issuing a challenge to Roger Goodell to hand out discipline is probably the last thing we would do if we were running an NFL franchise.

Of course, we’re not the buffoons who run and coach the New York Jets. By failing to punish Braylon Edwards for his latest brush with the law on Tuesday morning, the Jets have left the door wide open for Goodell to bring the hammer down on their idiot wide receiver.

Edwards was hooked for DWI at 5:15 a.m. on Manhattan’s West Side and held in jail until his arraignment later in the day. The Jets quickly went into damage control, issuing statements and publicizing their Player Protect program that could have offered Edwards a luxury ride home free of charge. They tried to get out in front of the issue, but like so many other times in Edwards’ life they didn’t go far enough to make sure that he would make a legitimate attempt to change his ways. They obvious didn’t care too much that two of Edwards’ teammates, Vernon Gholston and D’Brickashaw Ferguson, were passengers in Edwards’ Range Rover and also could have been seriously hurt as a result of Edwards’ recklessness.

Jets’ general manager Mike Tannenbaum made it clear that Edwards wouldn’t be deactivated for Sunday’s critical AFC East game against the Miami Dolphins. They demoted Edwards from the starting lineup – OH NO! – and left any further action up to the league office. This should tell everyone that the Jets don’t care if their players endanger their fans or the citizens surrounding them by behaving badly – they value winning above all else – and that Edwards can’t possibly already be in the league’s substance abuse program. Were Edwards already in the program, he’d be facing a mandatory four-game suspension for such an arrest and you can bet your mortgage the Jets would have tried to undercut the NFL (think the Pittsburgh Steelers with Ben Rapelisberger) and suggested an alternate form of punishment. They already have a wide receiver, Santonio Holmes, serving a league-mandated suspension. They can’t afford to have two playmakers sidelined.

That leaves the matter to Goodell, who has slapped players with far cleaner records than Edwards’ trail of tears. All this former first-round bust needs to do is call Vincent Jackson, Michael Vick, Pacman Jones, Rapelisberger or Holmes to understand that Mr. Goodell doesn’t play game. We only hope that he does what the Jets were too gutless to do on their own and puts Edwards down for the near future.

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Revis makes his return, and — no, this isn’t a mistake — we like it

Posted by Bill Koch on September 6, 2010

We here at Ramble On would like to congratulate the New York Jets and Darrelle Revis on finally reaching a long-term deal.

Revis ended his holdout late Sunday night by reportedly agreeing to a seven-year contract. He’ll be in New York’s starting lineup when the Jets face off against the Baltimore Ravens in a matchup of two AFC heavyweights in Week 1. The signing brings an end to one of the NFL offseason’s hottest storylines, one that was chronicled daily in New York’s newspapers, talked about on its radio stations and shown in detail on the terrific HBO series Hard Knocks.

We’d also like to extend a hand to the Jets’ fans out there, but maybe not for the reason you would think. All the New England Patriots’ fans will have those hands ready to slap your faces now that Revis is back and your team is whole. We didn’t want to hear any bull*#@& excuses about how Revis wasn’t on the field or about how Revis was still holding out or about how the Jets were missing their best player while the Patriots rolled to another AFC East title and New York missed the playoffs. It would have been worse listening to you whine and complain than it has been hearing about how the Jets are going to be making a Super Bowl run this season. We actually would have felt bad for you before – we sure as hell won’t now.

Bringing in a bunch of domestic batterers like Santonio Holmes doesn’t scare us for a minute. Mark Sanchez is still a turnover machine. LaDainian Tomlinson is still a gutless worm who will quit on you just like he screwed San Diego in the AFC Championship Game against New England. Jason Taylor is still 65 years old. Vernon Gholston is still one of the five biggest draft busts of the past 20 years. Antonio Cromartie still can’t remember exactly where his 24 kids are right now. Those are the sort of character guys in the locker room that will bring your pathetic franchise to its first title game in over four decades? No chance, Revis or not, but now the Jets will know that even their best players weren’t enough. I can speak for all of New England when I say that we can’t wait to watch them fail together.

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Favre makes return official…finally…like you didn’t know it was happening all along

Posted by Bill Koch on August 18, 2010

Much like the rest of the free world, we here at Ramble On are happy that the latest installment in the Brett Favre Chronicles is done and dusted. Favre let everyone in on one of football’s worst-kept secrets on Wednesday when he returned to practice with the Minnesota Vikings and announced that he would play again this season.

Yes, we’ve had enough of this just like you. We would love to just ignore it and let it go away. We can’t. Fact is that Favre makes the Vikings one of the top five teams in the NFL thanks to the weapons already in place in Minnesota, and he was pretty damn good while helping to lead the Vikings to the NFC championship game last year. All the Favre haters out there snicker and point out that he threw an interception that helped the New Orleans Saints pull off the victory, but the events that led up to that – a 33-to-7 touchdown-to-interception ratio during the regular season, 4,200 passing yards, a 13-5 record – have done more than enough to convince us that Favre can still play at a high level. As we’ve said before here at Ramble On, none of this discussion would be necessary if Minnesota actually thought that Tarvaris Jackson could do a capable job under center.

Favre wouldn’t be Favre without making a few ridiculous statements along the way, and he didn’t disappoint on Wednesday. The notion that he’s certainly done after this season all because it’s No. 20 of his Hall of Fame career can’t possibly be believed. The idea that he never knew whether or not he was going to be able to play in 2010, using his bothersome right ankle as an excuse, is laughable. This man has started almost 300 straight games in the NFL. He’s impervious to pain, whether he’s 41 or 21. One thing is for sure – the NFL is certainly much more interesting with The Ol’ Gunslinger back in the huddle.

Side note – we’ll never play poker with Brad Childress. He’s managed to beautifully navigate these turbulent waters for the last two years without breaking a sweat or having his team chemistry ruined by Favre’s constant waffling. Childress was either bluffing and waiting to see Favre’s cards or knew that he was holding a full house all along. Either way, Childress’ team just got a huge boost in its efforts to reach Super Bowl XLV.

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Jets take their first ‘Knocks’

Posted by Bill Koch on August 11, 2010

As if we hadn’t heard enough from the New York Jets and their fans this offseason, HBO is giving the club another platform to spread its river of preseason B.S.

Hard Knocks kicked off Wednesday night, an extremely well-produced, in-depth look inside New York’s training camp in upstate New York. HBO does this sort of thing the right way. The network insists that everything is on the record and spares no expense in wiring handfuls of players for sound. The finished product is a commercial-free look into the macho, alpha dog world and culture of an NFL team. We here at Ramble On are obviously Patriots’ fans, but we couldn’t help ourselves. We tuned in to check on our AFC East rivals and came away with some initial impressions.

— The Jets might be the loudest 9-7 team we’ve ever heard. Let’s not forget that New York backed into the postseason last year (thanks for that, Peyton Manning) and employed one of the league’s most turnover-prone offenses. All of these combustible personalities will only get along under the same roof if the Jets are winning. If not, we’ll love watching the certain implosion.

— This team is going nowhere without Darrelle Revis. The coaches and players talk so much about just keeping a normal routine without their All-Pro cornerback that his absence dominates most of the action. Sanchez lit up New York’s replacement corners during the offense-defense scrimmages, a bad sign for the Jets’ pressure defense if it wants to compete against the likes of New England, Miami, Indianapolis, Houston and the rest of the high-octane AFC passing attacks. Mike Tannenbaum’s drive back to Cortland from a diner a little closer to Manhattan was marked by frustration and bewilderment with Revis’ astronomical contract demands.

— Didn’t Rex Ryan have lap-band surgery? We thought so…but I guess we were wrong. He’s still the fat slob that we always knew and loathed. Sneaking those Peanut M & M’s is going to keep Rexy from ever being truly sexy. I almost wish Ryan worked for the government — he’d be able to pay the national debt before he dies of a heart attack within the next 10 years with the system of fines that the Jets have in place for every time Ryan is caught snacking off his diet.

— We’ll give Sanchez credit for this – he wants to take charge of this team right now in only his second year. Sanchez is willing to step forward and be a leader on a club that has a ton of strong personalities who would make a lesser man sink into the background. It takes guts for Sanchez to make such a statement when he has to answer to head cases like Santonio Holmes and Braylon Edwards, seasoned veterans like Tony Richardson and postseason chokers like LaDainian Tomlinson.

— Let’s consider the following quotes from this week at training camp, and you can tell us which New York Jets player was guilty of saying them:

‘I got a little heated, and I was surprised that came out of my mouth.’
‘It’s just so hard to win. It doesn’t just happen. As you get older, you realize that, and you try to convince the young guys.’
‘You’ve got to pay the price.’

So, any guesses? Tomlinson? Bart Scott? Sanchez?

This was a trick question. The unnamed player who ripped his offensive linemen by calling them ‘fat cows,’ complained about how difficult it is to win a Super Bowl and talked about putting in extra time despite missing more than 75 percent of his team’s offseason workouts was none other than Tom Brady.

Sorry folks. We just couldn’t resist. Even Sanchez sounds like more of a captain and field general at this point than The Artist Formerly Known as No. 12.

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Two Fenway Franks please! On second thought……

Posted by Bill Koch on July 26, 2010

Food

We came across this little nugget today while surfing the internet for the latest and greatest in the world of sports. This is the side that’s often unseen – our stadiums. Specifically, is that Fenway Frank completely safe? Are the Papa Gino’s pizzas at Gillette Stadium as fresh as advertised? Would the Bruins really be cheap enough to serve expired beef in their cheeseburgers?

Here are the results. By comparison, we look like we’re pretty lucky here in New England (Fenway Park, Gillette Stadium, The Fake Garden). Canada (Bell Centre, Rogers Centre, Scotiabank Place) seems like a great place to go to a game. Illinois (Wrigley Field, the United Center, U.S. Cellular Field) is just about perfect. Colorado? Florida? Not so much. And be careful drinking those $60 glasses of scotch at Yankee Stadium and Citi Field. Your price to pay for snobbery could end up costing you a trip to the emergency room. Don’t say that we here at Ramble On never added to the quality of your life.

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Sexy Rexy and the state of the New York Jets

Posted by bdowd625 on March 15, 2010

The New York Jets have to be the busiest team in pro sports right now. Every day they’re either cutting someone (Thomas Jones), signing someone (LaDainian Tomlinson) or releasing medical information (in this case, news of Rex Ryan’s heroic weight-loss effort). Talk about having a lot on your plate.

Speaking of having a lot on your plate, Ryan recently underwent lap-band surgery, which will make him get full faster and supposedly help him lose weight. Maybe now he’ll stop at 15 White Castle burgers instead of his usual 20, but I digress. The guy’s just a straight-up slob that loves to run his mouth and fill it with all sorts of delicious goodies at the same time. Just check out his smokin’ hot body in the video clip below. Dead sexy.

But enough about Rex. The real reason for this post is to welcome that crybaby LT to the AFC East. I think the Jets signed him to play a Kevin Faulk-type role, one in which he catches passes out of the backfield and takes an occasional handoff on third down. What I’m expecting, however, is more crying on the sidelines in Foxboro when he can’t get his tender quad stretched out. And now we get to see it twice a year since he’s in the Patriots’ division! Christmas has come early!

Suck it, LT. Your career is over. Now go make another shitty YouTube video where you pretend that you’re a good dancer.

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Bye bye, LT

Posted by bdowd625 on February 22, 2010

Surprise, surprise – LT was cut by the San Diego Chargers today. If I remember correctly, my counterpart here at Ramble On, BK1015, called this days ago. It’s just another example of how this blog is taking over the sports world one awesome post at a time.

LT will be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame someday, but what I will remember most about this little weasel is how he always hid behind his tinted visor and Darth Vader-style pancho when the going got tough. San Diego Super Chargers my ass. Good game against the Jets in the playoffs, you frauds.

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Less than defenseless

Posted by bigblue123 on January 4, 2010

It took me a bit to write this blog post about the Giants’ season finale.

I’d like to say that I was recovering from my plunge into Lake George on New Year’s Day. Hey, all you global warming (now climate change) psychos – where’s your freakishly warm temps now?? Over 1,000 nut jobs jumped into the frigid lake that day – no shortage of polar bears in Upstate New York. (If the weather keeps dropping that’s where they’ll be soon enough too.) Before you email me, I do believe in climate change just not letting it monopolize my thoughts. Unlike Al Gore and Johnny Travolta- I always fly commercial and green is my favorite color (because I’m Irish and not because it’s the color of EPA money coming my way).

Oh yeah, the G-Men. Thank God for ESPN. I have learned that the Giants gave up 40+ points for only the second time in their history in back-to-back games. I learned that they became the fifth team in NFL history (in the wild card era) to go 5-0 and miss the playoffs. Just love ESPN for how much it teaches me about the ineptitude of my team.

The Giants rolled over like your favorite pooch yesterday. Brett Favre looked great, the Giants looked like, well, liked they looked when they lost to Carolina 41-9 the week before. Oh, well the Knicks are on the improve at 14-20 and the Metsies inked J Bay. At least its not 100% despair on those two fronts. We’ll see though.

Change is acomin’ to my favorite NFL team, which unraveled faster than a cheap sweater. I’d like to say that I’m not worried but that would be a lie. It especially bothers me that our strengths became our weaknesses and that always worries me. Our defense (see above) is a laughingstock. Vikings were running patterns with only officials in the same zip code for company. We had 30 turnovers this year after setting an NFL record the year before with 14. The running game, once also an asset, got nowhere.

A lot to worry about and fix. Time to wave the white flag and say “Go Pats.”

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What the hell just happened?

Posted by bdowd625 on January 3, 2010

I don’t even know where to start after watching that game. Part of me feels like Bill Belichick just wanted to see the Steelers miss out on the playoffs, so he made all those ridiculous personnel moves like flip-flopping the quarterbacks throughout the game. Pittsburgh fans are going to whine and complain that the Pats threw in the towel at the end, but I won’t be feeling sorry for them anytime soon if they don’t make the playoffs. New England finished 11-5 last year and missed the postseason, so that’s just too damn bad if 9-7 doesn’t get you in. Cry me a river.

There was a lot going on in today’s Pats game, so I’m going to break it down into three sections below.

THE BAD

*  Say goodbye to Wes Welker for the remainder of the season. When a guy as tough as Welker is crying after an injury like that, you know it’s not good. Legs simply aren’t supposed to bend that way.

*  The offense was wildly inconsistent under Tom Brady once again. Granted, he lost one of his top weapons early on when Welker went down, but you need to put teams away when you have a 14-point lead like that. Inexcusable.

*  New England’s defense on third-and-long situations is virtually non-existent. I’ve never felt comfortable this season, even when other teams have faced third-and-20 and beyond. Jonathan Wilhite STILL hasn’t made a play to make me say, “Hey, maybe there’s more than just speed to this guy’s game.”

THE GOOD

*  Julian Edelman (call him Wes Welker 2.0 if you’d like) had a huge game today. The kid made a lot of big catches and always seemed to fight for the extra yardage to get the first down. He also made a few of the Houston defenders completely whiff on tackles, so hopefully he can keep the ball rolling into next week’s playoff game. The Pats are going to need him.

*  Brian Hoyer looked like the old Tom Brady when he was in the game. Hoyer has a great arm, he’s very composed in the pocket and he scrambles much better than Brady. If the Pats hadn’t gotten flagged for that holding penalty on their last drive, I wouldn’t have been surprised to see Hoyer lead the offense to a touchdown.

*  Stephen Gostkowski hit a a pair of long field goals today – a good sign considering that in the playoffs you need to take points anywhere you can get them. I’m confident in him going forward should the Pats need him in a big spot.

*  Welcome to the NFL, Darius Butler. After he picked off that pass that hit Jacoby Jones right in the hands, Butler was back in the other end zone in about 3.1 seconds. Now if he could only figure out how to cover opposing wide receivers. Shucks.

THE RANDOM

*  Bernard Pollard is a douchebag. That is all.

*  Did anyone catch it on TV when the Houston fans were trying to hold up letters that spelled out the word “N-O-I-S-E” but they somehow turned it into “N-O-S-I-E”? Nice job you uneducated hicks. Hooked on phonics works for me!

*  CBS color analyst Solomon Wilcots said late in the game that the Patriots were playing better than any other team in the NFL right now. Did he forget about the Chargers? Or the Packers? Or hell even the Browns at this point?

The Pats better get their acts together in the next week, otherwise it will be a quick stay in the playoffs. And with Welker seemingly out for good, New England’s chances of hoisting the Lombardi trophy now look slimmer than ever.

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