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4th and Krol: Week 17! The Final Picks Column for the ’15-’16 Season!

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Week 17:  Would this be better if I were Ben Vereen?

Week 17: Would this be better if I were Ben Vereen?

D.T.: Some how, someway, we survived all the way to this, the last and final week of the season. However, there are those of us who were not so lucky. Let us pay respects in memorial of those who did not make it to the end…

Pagano

Chuck Pagano
2012 – 2016

Kelly

Chip Kelly
2013 – 2015

Whis

Ken Whisenhunt
2014 – 2015

Pettine

Mike Pettine
2014 – 2016

Philbin

Joe Philbin
2012 – 2015

Ryan

Rob Ryan
2013 – 2015

Alright, this is already exhausting, and the joke has come and gone. The list of coaches fired this year would rival the montage of dead people at the Oscars, and rightfully so: this season sucked. But it’s almost over, and we’re looking at a solid post-season. A slice of warm pumpkin pie after a meal of burnt turkey and green bean casserole. But before we get there, we gotta choke down some more bad football. HERE WE GO!

BMK: Yeah, this season wasn’t great. Like we mentioned on the podcast, there just wasn’t a middle-class of football teams this year. Most divisions had favorites that just ran away with them, and there wasn’t any real drama. Except in dumpster fire divisions like the NFC East and the AFC South. And watching those division races were like watching a Dubai skyscraper blaze next to a fireworks display: haunting, beautiful, and ultimately destructive and awful.
That said, this regular season was awful but the post-season is promising. Especially in the NFC, where you can make a good argument that any of the teams in that field could make the Superbowl. Some might need a bounce or two to go their way, but hey, that’s football.
Also, DT, it is in real poor taste to use that date format with a guy that was fighting cancer a few years back. SHAME!

Shame

———-
JETS at BILLS
D.T.: The Jets have the chance to clinch a playoff berth for the first time in five years, and to do so, they have to go through Rex Ryan (who will likely be added to the list above, as soon as we hit the off season). I say they do it, and what’s more? I say they go further in the playoffs than the dreaded Patriots!

Yep, that's honestly about as far as I think the Pats go.

Yep, that’s honestly about as far as I think the Pats go.

JETS
BMK: Jets are taking this one and are going to the playoffs. I hope they make a deep run.
Here’s a fun game though: watch this game and take a drink every time they call Fitzpatrick smart since he went to Harvard. You’ll die of alcohol poisoning before the end of the first half.

———-
PATRIOTS at DOLPHINS
D.T.: But, before they get snubbed in the post-season, they’ll add another mark in the W column this week.
DOLPHINS
BMK: Really DT? Patriots losing on the road to the fish? It aint happening.
PATRIOTS

———-
SAINTS at FALCONS
D.T.: All of these bastards have a choice between playing for pride or a draft pick. I don’t really care, and if either of these teams cared, they’d have played better. BOOM!
Uh… Falcons.
BMK: The Falcons did their job last week and beat the Panthers, who are quickly becoming one of the NFL’s most irritating teams. This week…I don’t know. I’ll go with the Saints to be contradictory.
SAINTS

———-
LIONS at BEARS
D.T.: More pointless football between teams who should tank.
LIONS
BMK: These teams don’t care and neither do I.
BEARS

———-
EAGLES at GIANTS
D.T.: We’re really batting a thousand here, with these meaningful games… I am curious to see if the Eagles have some kind of renewed short-term enthusiasm after Kelly’s firing, much like the Titans enjoyed after Whisenhunt was canned. I think the Giants will win, but I don’t think that prevents Tom Coughlin from being fired, once and for all. And really, that’s two wins in one for the Giants.

"I was never the biggest fan of coaching baseball, anyway."

“I was never the biggest fan of coaching baseball, anyway.”

I’ll miss the easy target that was this man.

GIANTS
BMK: I’m going to check out this game because I want to see what happens to the Eagles. Coughlin’s playing for his job, but Bradford’s playing for another huge contract. Which will win! The resistible force or the moveable object! Tune in and find out!

"That's it DT, you're being ejected for making obvious jokes."

“That’s it DT, you’re being ejected for making obvious jokes.”

GIANTS

———-
REDSKINS at COWBOYS
D.T.: The Skins have already clinched the division, and the Cowboys are post-mortem. Who cares.
REDSKINS
BMK: Who cares? I think we all know the answer to that…

He cares.

REDSKINS

———-
TITANS at COLTS
D.T.: I don’t even know who the Colts are rolling out as QB this week, and I know they’ve hired Ryan Lindley (likely to be cut at the end of the day tomorrow) as an extra body just in case said mystery quarterback goes down like the rest. I give to the Titans this week, simply because I can actually name more than two starters still active on their roster.

"...shit, the only person I can name on our roster is T.Y."

“…shit, the only person I can name on our roster is T.Y.”

Andrew Luck, I love you dude. You deserve better. Explore free agency – there are plenty of teams that would move money around to have you. And if you come to Arizona, you can hang with your favorite coach again, win Super Bowls, and we know you look good in red. Whadda you say?

TITANS
BMK: Ah..the Colts. People were picking them to be in the Superbowl this year and now look at them. They’re a mess. Technically they’re still alive for the Playoffs, but 13 things have to happen before they’re in. One of which is George RR Martin finishing the Winds of Winter, and we all know that isn’t happening.

"Every night I sleep in a bed filled with cocaine and Asian hookers, Krol..."

“Every night I sleep in a bed filled with cocaine and Asian hookers, Krol…”

Like DT said, Luck, go to AZ. You’ll love it there.
TITANS

———-
RAVENS at BENGALS
D.T.: AJ McCarron continues to impress and nearly beat the Broncos last week, save a lucky fumble that went in Denver’s favor in overtime. The Ravens have enjoyed playing the upsetters since their elimination from the post-season, but I don’t their luck will continue on against the Bengals at home.
BENGALS
BMK: Okay, so I was wrong about AJ McCarron last week. SUE ME! I’m not wrong that 1) McCarron is a career backup, 2) Some QB desperate team will sign him (HELLO BROWNS!) and 3) Jon Snow is coming back in season 6 of Game of Thrones. You can take that shit to the bank!

 

"You know nothing, Bryan Krol."

“You know nothing, Bryan Krol.”

"Really? Crap, I just bought a house..."

“Really? Crap, I just bought a house…”

BENGALS

———-
STEELERS at BROWNS
D.T.: Again, I have no idea who’s starting under center for the Browns this week. This sad chapter in their history of many sad chapters comes to a close with a home defeat against their bitter Pittsburgh rivals, and will herald the end of Mike Pettine’s time in Cleveland.
STEELERS
BMK: I’m writing this in a hot frenzy on Sunday morning (right now it’s 8:53 am), and reports are coming in that Manziel was in Vegas on Saturday night. Manziel, you might recall, is out this week due to a concussion. Let that sink in. Homeboy is out in Vegas, the night before a game that he cannot play in because he has a brain injury.
Someone needs to check the Brown’s owner for a brain injury.

"Where's the craps table?"

“Where’s the craps table? I’m feeling lucky!”

STEELERS

———-
JAGUARS at TEXANS
D.T.: If the Texans beat the Jaguars, they clinch the AFC South. Yeah, I actually typed that sentence. A true example of how messed up this season has been. And I think they’ll do it. This year, we welcome both the Texans and the Redskins to the post-season. God help us all.
TEXANS
BMK: The Houston JJ Watts are going to win this game and flame out in a spectacular fashion during the post-season.
TEXANS

———-
RAIDERS at CHIEFS
D.T.: The Raiders are eliminated, and the Chiefs have already secured their spot in the playoffs. The Raiders didn’t go quietly though, and I maintain that Krol’s prediction that the Raiders could have made it to the wild card was not unfounded. We’d be looking at a very different situation in the AFC West this year, if not for some serious luck on the part of the Denver defense. Had they not enjoyed as many game-changing plays to save their drowning offense, we might have been looking at the Raiders and Chiefs heading towards playoff berths. Anyway, the Chiefs take this one.
CHIEFS
BMK: The Raiders are heading in a good direction. Will they take the next step? Who knows. But they have good pieces at QB, WR, and LB. If they get a good CB and LT they could make some noise next year in the AFC West and start winning a lot of games. The LA fans will love that, since LA only supports a winner, right M. Night?

"...and the twist is my career becomes a flaming pile of shit!"

“…and the twist is my career becomes a flaming pile of shit!”

———-
CHARGERS at BRONCOS
D.T.: The Chargers have played their last game at Qualcomm Stadium, and their final game under the San Diego banner will come as a loss to the Broncos at home. The Chargers have simply fallen apart on every level, and even the unbalanced Denver team will have no trouble picking them apart.

"Hey, out of all the teams that'll be looking for a QB this year, which one loves Jesus the most?"

“Hey, out of all the teams that’ll be looking for a QB this year, which one loves Jesus the most?

BRONCOS
BMK: Broncos are going to kill the Chargers. This is going to get ugly. An ignominious end the Chargers time in San Diego.

BRONCOS

———-
BUCCANEERS at PANTHERS
D.T.: As an unabashed Cardinals fan and sympathizer of children with terrible names, I’d love to see the Bucs knock Cam Newton down a few pegs. But that shit probably isn’t going to happen because, as Chosen Newton will soon learn, there is no justice in this world.
PANTHERS
BMK: I can’t even be snarky here. The Panthers will get the number one seed and we’ll have to deal with Newton for a few more weeks.
PANTHER

———-
SEAHAWKS at CARDINALS
D.T.: Lots of people, my partner included, think the Cardinals should take a hit and let the Seahawks slide past them. I say fuck off to that. Bring in your starters and play them to the best of their abilities. Not only because the Arizona Cardinals are still working their way out from Seattle’s shadow and a sweep would do wonders for that, but also because the Cardinals have secured a first round bye in the post-season, and they need to stay hot.

You don't do this shit to Aaron Rodgers EIGHT TIMES, then take a break.

You don’t do this shit to Aaron Rodgers EIGHT TIMES, then take a break.

I’d like to see a convincing Cardinals win here. Russell Wilson is still dangerous as hell, but that offensive line is in shambles, and the Cardinals can solidify their identity once and for all. And I think Bruce Arians is the type of guy to play at full steam and insist on making that statement.
CARDINALS
BMK: *pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries pleasenoinjuries….*
SEAHAWKS

———-
RAMS at NINERS
D.T.: Who the fuck cares. Both of these teams are in for fuckin’ brutal off-seasons.
RAMS
BMK: Later Tomsula. You were in an impossible situation with difficult people. There was no way you’d make it another year. You were a patsy from the beginning.
Jeff Fisher, why are you still employed?

"Why? I'll tell you why! Because of my AWESOME facial hair, ya dweeb!"

“Why? I’ll tell you why! Because of my AWESOME facial hair, ya dweeb!”

RAMS
———-
VIKINGS at PACKERS
D.T.: If you had told me that the Vikings and Packers would be tied for first and their week 17 match-up would declare the winner of the NFC North, I probably would have told you “Fuck off, good sir.” But that’s exactly what’s happening, and as such, it’s my GAME OF THE WEEK. The Pack is a mess right now, and Teddy Bridgewater is on fire — that alone would be reason enough to give the Vikings the win outright. However, Lambeau is a cold, hostile place to play, especially with pride and the division on the line. We’re in for a hell of a game, I think, and ultimately a narrow Vikings win.
VIKINGS
BMK: This is a tougher matchup to call than one would think. The Packers are pretty good at home, and this is a divisional matchup, so players will be paying attention. Normally, I’d go with the Packers for those reasons and because of Rodgers, but the Vikings are doing very well and the Packer’s offensive line is a mess. So I’m giving this the Vikings.
VIKINGS

———-
D.T.: And I think that should do it for the 2015-16 edition of 4th & Krol, at least in column form. Expect the podcast to continue on into the off-season, as we shift more towards pop culture, some off-season NFL news, and absolutely fuck all to do with baseball or basketball. I’d like to thank our reader for taking time out of each week to read our nonsense, and I hope we’ve entertained, informed and made the world a better, more marmy and sarcastic place. Cheers to you, dear reader, and may you never find a better use of your time.

BMK: With all sincerity, thanks for reading each week. If it wasn’t for you, this would be a whole lot less fun. But knowing that you’re suffering through a crappy regular NFL season with us makes this all worthwhile.

Next week, we transition to podcasts solely and we’ll be doing a post-mortem on the season plus talking about Star Wars.

The column will return next year and I’m hoping to have a permanent home for all this nonsense in the coming weeks.

Anyway, thanks again, and never change. You’re beautiful.

Unless you’re a Cowboys fan. Then you should rethink your life.

And now…your final weekly Kat Dennings….Let’s make it a good one.

ed5e0302da32664085b6c5ee0cde8c86 Kat

I had dreams like this during puberty.

Kat Dennings 02

One of the best pictures of Kat Dennings ever...

My life is gonna suck when that restraining order kicks in...

full-kat-dennings-4400af1757fa4d19e6b546338944204d-smaller-109284

"Really? He took the Browns? Over the Broncos?"

"Nanobubbles, you say?"

"I CARE about Philip Rivers!"

"No you're not Kat...Nobody likes Tomsula."

15a4fd07421a476a706cc6a48de25bf9e9e985cd59084cb7c91374499446aae7

"I told you that once Eli got used to three-step drops that he would excel in Macadoo's system, but you wouldn't stop staring and drooling."

"Whatever..."

"No, you wouldn't."

Kat Realizing that I was in LA and didn't call her...

"Seriously, no one cares about your weird personal life."

"Wait...Krol's actually using analysis?"

This post was written in white hot frenzy on Sunday morning while listening to techno...

 

4th Krol: Week Fifteen Picks!

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Week 15:  I've done this column so many times, I'm no longer green.

Week 15: I’ve done this column so many times, I’m no longer green.

D.T.: Three weeks left to go, and teams are dropping faster than people in Tom Coughlin’s high school yearbook.

"Actually, I'm the last surviving alum for the past 20 years."

“Actually, I’m the last surviving alum for the past 20 years.”

Each division in the AFC has dropped dead weight, with the North down to 50% of teams still in the hunt. The NFC has fared better, with tight races still taking place in multiple divisions. Unless you’re a fan of the Chargers, Titans, Browns, Ravens, Dolphins, Lions or Niners, we’re coming down to some truly important games. Let’s get into it!

BMK: After a few weeks of garbage games, we’re finally getting some meaningful games. I feel like Hawkeye in MASH, in the Adam’s Ribs episode, standing on top of the heater in the mess tent, refusing to “eat this dreck” anymore, and chanting “We want something else!”  Now we’re getting something else.

One of the best episodes ever...and now I want ribs.

One of the best episodes ever…and now I want ribs.

From the NFL at least. 4th and Krol is still giving you cheap shots, bad puns, and obscure pop culture references.

And Ms. Dennings, of course…

One of the best pictures of Kat Dennings ever...

One of the best pictures of Kat Dennings ever…

———-

BUCCANEERS at RAMS

D.T.: Last week, the Bucs fell victim to a desperate attempt by the Saints to stay in the running, while the Rams added insult to a very injured Lions squad, already eliminated from the playoffs. It’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that the Rams won’t make the post-season, but the Bucs still have a slight chance, being tied for second in the NFC South. I think Winston and his squad come out swinging, and put the (soon to be formerly) St. Louis Rams down for good.

BUCS
BMK: The Rams don’t get put down. The Rams put YOU down. There’s no way the Bucccanneers win this game.  Not with 8-8 in the Ram’s sight!

Yeah, this trade worked out like gangbusters...

Yeah, this trade worked out like gangbusters…

RAMS

———-

JETS at COWBOYS

D.T.: The Cowboys are finished. There’s a three-way tie for first between losing teams in the NFC East, and the Cowboys aren’t even in the conversation anymore. The Jets, however, are still nipping at the heels of a wounded Patriots team, and a win against Dallas this week will help to try and close the gap.

 

Can't wait for a looooong off-season of everyone talking about this fuckface.

Can’t wait for a looooong off-season of everyone talking about this fuckface.

 

JETS
BMK: Watching the Cowboys without Romo is like watching a beloved character in a Joss Whedon movie. We all know he/she is going to die so we’re just waiting for the inevitable. The Cowboys are done, have been done, and now we’re just waiting for the 3rd act, so they can get killed and we can go on to the exciting conclusion.

Alan Tudyk thinks I made a great point here...

Alan Tudyk thinks I made a great point here…

———-

PANTHERS at GIANTS

D.T.: The Dolphins made Eli Manning look like the greatest quarterback in the league on Monday night, failing on every level to contain the QB on his monstrous march over their defense.

"First time ever being called 'monstrous' - alright!"

“First time ever being called ‘monstrous’ – alright!”

 
Even the layman knows that if you pressure Eli, he’s prone to mistakes. Even so, the ‘Fins only pressured twice, and let Eli have his way. But that Panthers defense… that’s going to make for a very different narrative. Expect Eli to take some heavy hits, make some magic happen with ODB, but ultimately lose at home to a Panthers team en fuego.

PANTHERS

BMK: A couple of experts that I usually trust are picking the Giants this week.  Typically, I go all Gandalf on them, yelling, “Pete Prisco – STAY THIS MADNESS!” But fuck it.  I’m picking the Giants this week.

SIC SEMPER TYRANIS, DT!

Eli aint even buying this pick...

Eli aint even buying this pick…

GIANTS

———-

TITANS at PATRIOTS

D.T.: Fuck off.

PATRIOTS

BMK: I wanted to write a full break down of this game, just to troll DT a bit. But then I realized (as I often do) that DT’s approach was the correct one.

PATRIOTS

"I've killed THIS many Asian hookers today..."

“I’ve killed THIS many Asian hookers today…”

———-

BILLS at REDSKINS

D.T.: It’s funny that the Redskins have something to play for this Sunday. I’m going to be a total dick and pick the Bills, because (and I know my partner agrees) that head office does not need any sort of validation by making the post-season. ‘Skins fans would love to see their team go into the playoffs, no doubt, but the cost of doing so would mean sticking with that same coaching staff and general manager. It’d be better for everyone to wash the season and let the firings begin.

 

"Our market research actually proves that fans LIKE terrible QB controversies, expired beer and a revolving door for our coaching staff."

“Our market research actually proves that fans LIKE terrible QB controversies, expired beer and a revolving door for our coaching staff.”

 

BILLS

BMK: The NFC East still has a three-way tie for first. As much as I’d love that logjam to continue till the end, someone is going to stumble away from the pack. I hope it’s not the Redskins though. As DT alluded to above, there’s no reason to encourage Dan Synder. He’s loathsome.

I’m picking the Bills. More for hope than anything else. There has to be justice in the world. There just has to be!

BILLS

———-

CHIEFS at RAVENS

The Chiefs really want a shot at the wildcard, though it may not have been evident in their sleepy game against San Diego last week. They are right in the running with the Broncos, who showed just how vulnerable they’ve become with a loss to the Raiders. They’ve got a hell of a lot more to play for than the Ravens do, and that makes them dangerous. I see the Chiefs taking a narrow win this week.

CHIEFS

BMK: The jury might still be out on whether or not Joe Flacco is elite (spoiler alert: he aint), but whatever sad sack the Ravens just signed off the street certainly isn’t elite, and without a decent QB, there is no way the Ravens will win this game. Or any other games, for that matter.

This meme makes me laugh.

CHIEFS

———-

TEXANS at COLTS

D.T.: The second I told Krol last week that Brian Hoyer looked really good, the Texans immediately stopped scoring points and began to shit the bed. But holy fuck – against an Indy squad that gave up 51 points to the motherfucking Jaguars, Christmas is coming early for Houston as they step over their divisional rivals and walk into first place in the AFC South.

 

"Something funny about Santa and sacks, bros!"

“Something funny about Santa and sacks, bros!”

 

TEXANS
BMK: As inept as the Texans are offensively, the Colts are even worse.  How, I don’t know.

TEXANS
———-

FALCONS at JAGUARS

D.T.: Falcons gonna Falcons. Shut outs in the NFL are surprisingly rare, but Atlanta made it look like an every day occurrence for Carolina, who had no problems at all keeping them out of the endzone and scoring 38 points themselves. Fuck it, I’m calling this my upset of the week, and predicting we see the Jags win two in a row and beat a truly humbled and downtrodden Atlanta.

JAGUARS

BMK: As a long-time Cardinals fan, I always root for horrible franchises to get their acts together and actually put a winning product on the field.  Except for the Rams, since the Rams are in St. Louis and owned by a complete douche.

Anyway, the Jaguars had a great game last week, and odds are good this week that they’ll have another good game against a reeling Falcons squad. Which makes me happy, since Arthur Blank owns Home Depot as well as the Falcons, and Home Depot sucks butt.

This came up when I Googled "Home Depot Sucks." I like it. It adds a bit of class.

This came up when I Googled “Home Depot Sucks.” I like it. It adds a bit of class.

JAGUARS

———-

BEARS at VIKINGS

D.T.: Doesn’t really matter, does it? At this point, the Bears’ only hope is winning the next three games and tying the Vikings, but with tie-breakers and outside forces influencing teams’ ability to make the playoffs, the Bears are done. The Vikings will finish them off.

VIKINGS

BMK: This is probably the cutest match-up of the whole week. Seriously?  Bears AND Vikings playing with each other?  That makes my black heart grow three sizes.

The Vikings will win.  Mostly because they’ll have swords.

I had dreams like this during puberty.

I had dreams like this during puberty.

VIKINGS

———-

PACKERS at RAIDERS

D.T.: Last week’s game between Oakland and Denver was a bit of a head-scratcher. Denver’s offensive line, which isn’t great but not terribly awful either, allowed Khalil Mack alone five sacks on Brock Osweiler. Denver’s failure at nearly every level led to small quarterback controversy, but more on that later. The Packers have also become inconsistent and hard to predict in the second half of this season, and that makes them vulnerable to a team like Oakland that has a lot of good pieces in place, but not the connective tissue just yet to make it all work. We’ve seen some impressive displays from Oakland, and some reminiscent of recent seasons gone by.

 

Here's Darnell Dockett with a friendly reminder of such things.

Here’s Darnell Dockett with a friendly reminder of such things.

This’ll be an interesting match-up, seeing how Oakland’s defense handles Aaron Rodgers, and how their own offense takes on that middling Green Bay defense. In the end, I give it to the Packers, but I think we’re in for a fun game here.

PACKERS

BMK: What you just read above, gentle reader, is the awful taste of sour grapes. I was there when DT saw his Broncos get handled by the Raiders, and it was not a fun sight.

Anyway, this may end up being the last home game for the Raiders in Oakland. For that reason, I think I’m going with Oakland this week. It feels like Green Bay is running out of gas.

RAIDERS

———-

BROWNS at SEAHAWKS

D.T.: Meh. I’d love to see Cleveland get a crazy, unlikely win here, even if it means a feather in Manziel’s booze and shame-drenched cap. But that shit ain’t happening.

SEAHAWKS

BMK: This won’t even be close. And then we’ll have to endure another week of Hot Takers extoling Russell Wilson’s virtues at QB, ignoring the fact that he’s been playing shitty teams with shitty secondaries.

SEAHAWKS

———-

BENGALS at NINERS

D.T.: Poor Cincinnati… coming into the first half of the season undefeated, looking like real contenders up to this point, and Andy Dalton busts the thumb on his throwing hand. Now he won’t even get a chance to lose that game in the first round of the tournament, and Bengals fans will be left wondering what could have been.

 

He'd cry, if he had a soul... but, y'know, that whole unfortunately thing with Gingers.

He’d cry, if he had a soul… but, y’know, that whole unfortunately thing with Gingers.

And we have no idea what to expect with AJ McCarron – coming into his first start against a soft opponent, but in a high-stakes situation is going to be nerve-wracking. The kid showed grace under pressure in Alabama… but this ain’t college ball. I think we might see another crazy upset here, and the late and tragic downfall of the Bengals, starting with an embarrassing win in Santa Clara.

NINERS

BMK: The Ginger of Doom is done for the year. And so are the Bengals.

NINERS

———-

DOLPHINS at CHARGERS

Once teams get eliminated from the post-season, they should just be given the remaining weeks off, so we don’t have to suffer through shit like this.

Cha…Dol… fuck, I can’t decide. I’ll go with whatever Krol picks, and we’ll call this one a wash.

BMK: So DT fobbed this one off on me, huh?  Fine.

CHICAGO BULLS

“Crap. Now I have to suffer a season ending injury in another sport!”

———-

BRONCOS at STEELERS

D.T.: As a Broncos fan and an enthusiastic disliker of all things Steelers, this shit is going to be difficult to watch. Denver’s offensive line forgot how to offensive line, and fans were calling for Peyton Manning – who’s back on his feet and taking snaps with the practice squad this week – to return and take his place under center.

 

"I have to play with the practice squad? With the kid who wears his helmet backwards, and the other guy who thinks my name is Papa John?"

“I have to play with the practice squad? With the kid who wears his helmet backwards, and the other guy who thinks my name is Papa John?”

Neither quarterback choice honestly inspires much confidence against the Steelers, who are very hungry to a shot at #1 in their division, with Dalton out of the picture. It’s up the Broncos defense to try and keep the team in the game.

Ugh… STEELERS

BMK: This is a hard game to pick. Both teams have very good components and glaring weaknesses.  I think the Bronco’s secondary is better than the Steelers, but the Steelers very clearly have a superior QB.

I’m going with the Steelers. There’s no way a team that lost to the Raiders can beat the Steelers this week, is there, DT?

STEELERs

———-

CARDINALS at EAGLES

D.T.: What seems like an easy game to call on the surface, things are actually always explosive when these two Bird Teams get together. And give the Eagles desperation to break that three tie in the NFC East, and the Cardinals to do one better than their secured playoff berth and land a first round bye and home field advantage, the feathers are going to fly in Philly.

 

And likely the Gatorade, too.

And likely the Gatorade, too.

Shit’s gonna get rough, and we can expect to see just as much yellow on that field as red and green. Still, the Cardinals sport the far superior offense, and their defense (when they’re actually fucking awake) is more than capable of containing that hit and miss Eagles offense. I give it to the Cardinals.

CARDINALS

BMK: The Cardinals are starting this maddening trend of playing down to their competition. I expect that to continue this week.  Despite being the better team, the Eagles will keep it close. Sam Bradford is not good enough to beat the AZ defense, but that won’t stop him from getting some good plays in.

CARDINALS

———-

LIONS at SAINTS

D.T.: The poor bastards on both these teams deserve a break. But sadly, only one will feel the sting on their season lessened with a win on Monday night. As the world looks for something more interesting to watch, I see the Saints getting a win this week because it’s draft pick time for Detroit. That team has a lot to think about this off-season, and fresh off an early elimination from the post-season is as good a time as any to start. Show up, make it look like something of an effort, and eat the next three losses.

SAINTS

BMK: Forget it.

SAINTS

———-

D.T.: Some of these games are still exciting, but we’re reaching the close of a season that had many a foregone conclusion right around the halfway mark. It’s been a season with many high points, but one with a very clear line between the haves and have-nots. Now, we see the teams who made their claims to the post-season very early on fight for byes and rights to home field advantage.

Anyway, here’s wishing you a very Merry Christmas, dear readers. May all of your holiday dreams come true (unless you’re a Browns or Lions fan… in which case, may you at least get some bitchin’ presents or something).

 

BMK: Who else is ready for the post-season? As always, thanks for reading. The podcast will return once we figure out hosting issues.

And now…your weekly dose of Kat Dennings…

Kat

 

4th and Krol: Week 12 Picks!

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Week Twelve: This column, we should shelve.

Week Twelve: This column, we should shelve.

D.T.: It’s Thanksgiving, and this week two things happen: gorging yourself on food and drink while watching peak-conditioned athletes perform at a world-class level, and also… no teams on bye, which means a hell of a lot of games to talk about. Or make snide jokes about before quickly moving on.

BMK: It’s the Saturday after Thanksgiving, so I’m option to take cheap shots and move on. Honestly, did you expect anything else?

———-

EAGLES at LIONS

D.T.: Everyone involved with both these teams are pretty unhappy. The Philadelphia press is pulling no punches asking Chip Kelly if he has any fucking idea what he’s doing. The Lions fired everyone. Both of these teams come into this Thanksgiving match-up with fuck all to be thankful for… aside from the millions of dollars, loyal fans and women throwing themselves at them.

"Wait... I thought we were supposed to throw the women."

“Wait… I thought we were supposed to throw the women.”

Sam Bradford should come back, and that Detroit defense is a joke. The Eagles should get a decent win. And I feel bad about that pretty terrible Greg Hardy joke, so for the rest of this column, I’m going to simultaneously show my appreciation and respect for women, and also express what I’m thankful for in this special holiday week: I’m posting nothing but photos of cheerleaders from my winning teams this week.

Charnei from Philly, I'm thankful for you.

Charnei from Philly, I’m thankful for you.

EAGLES
BMK: Since I already admitted that I’m writing this on Saturday, I’ll just go ahead and admit I was planning on taking Philadelphia.  This was obviously a mistake, as the Eagles lost to Detroit 1350 – 3.

I never, ever bought into the Eagles. During the pre-season, we were inundated with nonsense about Chip Kelly and his vaunted “system.” We’ll, we’re seeing the results of that system. In college, you can win with a system, but in the pros, you need talent. Especially at QB. The Eagles got rid of some of their most talented players and traded for Sam Bradford (though, to be fair, Foles aint exactly setting the world on fire in St. Louis). This team is a mess from the top down.

Eagles dog, I'm thankful for you!

Rather than objectify women, I’m going to post a cute picture of a dog wearing a jersey. Unless I can find a good picture of Kat Dennings.

EAGLES
———-

PANTHERS at COWBOYS

D.T. The Return of Romo brought with it a win last week, and an end to the Cowboys’ seven game losing streak. Even so, it was against Miami and that doesn’t command much confidence. The Panthers are on fucking fire, and that defense will knock around a Dallas offense that’s still shaking off the dust. I predict a Panthers win, and at least one Romo re-injury scare.

Kloi from Carolina, I'm thankful for you.

Kloi from Carolina, I’m thankful for you.

PANTHERS

BMK: More post-mortems. I was going to pick the Cowboys here. I assumed that, with Romo back, and the NFC Least still wide open, that the Cowboys would show some backbone and try to win. Like the Eagles, I’m not entirely sold on the now 10-0 Panthers. Their schedule aint exactly a murderer’s row. So I figured they could lose here.

This dude's adorable...

This dude’s adorable…

Nope. Jerry Jones fucked me again. And Cam Newton, one of the worst dressers since Uncle Leo in Seinfeld, is now at the top of the NFC. Awesome.

In lieu of a funny Uncle Leo picture, here's this...

In lieu of a funny Uncle Leo picture, here’s this…

COWBOYS

———-

BEARS at PACKERS

D.T.: It finally came out that Aaron Rodgers has been playing hurt. I don’t know if that accounts fully for that three game Green Bay losing streak, but it’s a good place to start. And getting a nice 30-13 win against the Vikings last week was a good place to start for a recovery. The top Turkey Day game this year will result in a Packers in at home, and Cheesus and Feast Mode feasting on Turkey on the 50 yard line.

The Packers don't have cheerleaders, so here's Kloi again. I'm very thankful for her.

The Packers don’t have cheerleaders, so here’s Kloi again. I’m very thankful for her.

PACKERS

BMK: This. This one hurt. I felt sure that the Packers would beat Chicago.

To paraphrase Jack Burton, can someone, I don’t care who, tell me what the hell is happening in Green Bay?  Seriously. This team is falling apart faster than that 3rd act of Batman Begins.

Man when things fall apart, that centre sure don’t hold very long.

PACKERS
By the way, if you’re keeping score at home, I just referenced Big Trouble in Little China, Devin Faraci’s infamous Batman review, and William Butler Yeats.  I feel like Dennis Miller in his prime. When he was funny and not a right-wing douchebag.

Who needs cheerleaders? This little guy will raise your spirits!

Who needs cheerleaders? This little guy will raise your spirits!

———-

SAINTS at TEXANS

D.T.: Who the FUCK knows what’ll happen here. There’s simply no predicting what will happen in any given Saints game. What I thought was a no-brainer in week 10 ended up being a blood bath, and the Texans are pretty decent at home this year. They’re also looking for a spot in the post-season, and a win against a completely fucked New Orleans team will give them that much more momentum.

Identical Twin Cheerleaders Jordan and Randi from Houston, I'm thankful for you. And you.

Identical Twin Cheerleaders Jordan and Randi from Houston, I’m thankful for you. And you.

TEXANS

BMK: Yeah, this is a hard one to call. Neither team is setting the world on fire, though JJ Watt is close, since some men just want to watch the world burn and he’s one of them. Drew Brees is obviously a better QB that whatever future practice squader that the Texans are going to throw in the lineup.

I’m going to go with the Texans. Brees is still capable of playing at a high-level, but the Texans front-seven is very impressive and should harass him all day.  Brees will make it clear to JJ Watt that his attention is not welcome but Watt don’t give a fuck.

Of COURSE I went for the pug.

Of COURSE I went for the pug.

TEXANS

———-

RAMS at BENGALS

D.T.: The Bengals lost to the Cardinals, but played very well against an Arizona squad that’s hit its true stride on both sides of the ball. As for St. Louis, well, who the fuck would have thought that starting Case Keenum as your quarterback would have been a step back from Nick Foles? He might even the start AGAIN if he clears concussion protocol. The Rams looked to be upsetters in the NFC West this season, but now the only ones upset are the four or five remaining Rams fans.

Bengals will recover from their two game losing streak with a nice win here.

Rachael from Cincinnati, I'm thankful for you!

Rachael from Cincinnati, I’m thankful for you!

BENGALS

BMK: Keenum aint playing and the Rams aint winning. The Ginger of Doom will have a nice game, and then go home and settle in with his wife to watch Bum Fight videos.

Seriously...this dude looks like Dexter.

Seriously…this dude looks like Dexter.

BENGALS

Dalton might be a secret serial killer, but this dog is cute!

Dalton might be a secret serial killer, but this dog is cute!

———-

VIKINGS at FALCONS

D.T.: The NFC South should really just hang it up. It’s the year of the Panther, and none of the other three teams can put up any sort of contest against them. And the Falcons might get a few scores in this week, but expect the Vikings to take the win.

Nao from Minnesota, I'm thankful for you!

Nao from Minnesota, I’m thankful for you!

VIKINGS

BMK: The Falcons came on strong and just sputtered out. Like a Bro on the Jersey Shore who drank too much Hypnotiq and couldn’t maintain his erection.

Remember this clown?

Remember this clown?

The Vikings will take care of business this week. Considering how Green Bay is playing, I’m sure the Vikings are going to take that division.

VIKINGS

I'm fierce! Like Bridgewater!

I’m fierce! Like Bridgewater!

———-

GIANTS at REDSKINS

D.T.: Even with Victor Cruz out, the Giants managed to very nearly knock off the Patriots’ perfect season. That in and of itself tells me they’ve got it in them to put the Redskins right back where they belong in the NFL social standings. Seriously, two high profile wins, and suddenly the Redskins think they’re the World Fucking Champions. When you guys get a field that people can walk on without signing a waiver, when you start selling beer that doesn’t have Super Bowl logos of yester-years, and when you’re more than one game ahead of a rival that just lost seven games in a ROW, then we’ll take you seriously.

The Giants don't have cheerleaders either, so here's Kloi again. Did I mention how thankful I am?

The Giants don’t have cheerleaders either, so here’s Kloi again. Did I mention how thankful I am?

GIANTS

BMK: Who gives a shit?

This guy is much cooler than you.

This guy is much cooler than you.

GIANTS

———-

BUCCANEERS at COLTS

D.T.: Kind of an interesting match-up, here. But not really. Andrew Luck has improved since Pep Hamilton was fired, but that Colts defense isn’t much competition for the weapons Tampa has at the ready. If they could put them to use in any sort of consistent fashion, they’d be a dangerous team.

Brooke from Tampa Bay, I am thankful for you!

Brooke from Tampa Bay, I am thankful for you!

BUCCANEERS

BMK: This could be an interesting game if Andrew Luck were playing. But Father Time Matt Hassleback is playing.

Actually, Brooke is super cute.

Actually, Brooke is super cute.

BUCCANEERS

———-

BILLS at CHIEFS

D.T.: Don’t let that close loss against the Patriots on Monday night fool you: this Bills team is still a joke, and the Chiefs are poised to make a comeback in the AFC West with Peyton Manning officially out of the picture. They’ll knock off the Bills this week in their first step towards that goal.

Nicole from Kansas City, I am thankful for you!

Nicole from Kansas City, I am thankful for you!

CHIEFS

BMK: I was going to dispute DT’s claim that the Chiefs are going to make a play for the AFC West, but then I realized that the other teams in that division are garbage. So it’s possible Andy Reid and his molester-stache will take the division from the Broncos.  But then again, it’s also possible that I’d get this column published before the Thursday night game.

CHIEFS

———-

RAIDERS at TITANS

D.T.: Fuck it, who cares. Raiders.

Amanda from Oakland, I am thankful for you!

Amanda from Oakland, I am thankful for you!

RAIDERS

BMK: Who cares?  Well, we all know who cares…

He cares.

He cares.

RAIDERS

This guy, however, does NOT care.

This guy, however, does NOT care.


———-

CHARGERS at JAGUARS

D.T.: Look, no one is going to read this part of the column except for the one Jags fan on the Chud forum. So for that, I’ll pick the Jaguars (in all honesty, I think they’ll win) and we’ll get right to the cheerleader.

Taylor from Jacksonville, I'm thankful for YOU!

Taylor from Jacksonville, I’m thankful for YOU!

JAGUARS

BMK: I’m not even sure he’ll read this, DT. I know I wouldn’t if I were him. Anyway, there’s no way the Chargers win this week. Incidentally,  Rivers is four kids short of having an entire side of a football team. LET’S GET GOING PHIL!

I feel so bad for this dog.

I feel so bad for this dog.

JAGUARS

———-

DOLPHINS at JETS

D.T.: I’ll say one thing for the assholes behind the NFL schedule: They sure made this week easy, for Thanksgiving.

Emma from New York, I am thankful for you!

Emma from New York, I am thankful for you!

JETS

BMK: I’ve been burned taking the Jets this year, so I’m picking the Dolphins out of spite. Which is really irritating because a) I hate Florida, b) Dantallica irritates me, and c) I actually sort of like the Jets. But I can’t let feelings come into play when I’m picking teams. I use science and geometric logic. DT, on the other hand, uses goat intestines and advice from the deranged.

Which is why he’s winning.

Double your fun!

Double your fun!

DOLPHINS
———-

CARDINALS at NINERS

D.T.: The Arizona Cardinals are celebrating their second bye week this season by scouting out where they’ll be staying for Super Bowl 50. With Patrick Peterson cleared for play, Blaine (I held a press conference and no one came) Gabbert doesn’t stand a chance. And since I don’t believe in trap games, it’s easy to call this a quick win for Arizona.

Rachael from Arizona, I'm VERY thankful for you!

Rachael from Arizona, I’m VERY thankful for you!

CARDINALS

BMK: Unlike my partner behind the Saguaro Curtain, I do believe in trap games, and I think this game could be one.

First of all, the Cardinals are without a few key players on the defensive side of things, including Safety Deone Buchannan, which will really affect their run defense. Also, the Cardinals tend to get the yips against certain teams, and the 49ers are one of those teams. Of course, on the other hand, they’re playing against the QB that was so shitty get got let go from the Jaguars. You know who I’m talking about, right…

Yep...Blaine Gabbert.

Yep…Blaine Gabbert.

Anyway, I hope BA has his team focused and ready. They’re in contention for a first round bye, something that has never happened in the very long history of this franchise.

CARDINALS

Draw me like your French girls...

Draw me like your French girls…

———-

STEELERS at SEAHAWKS

D.T.: Perhaps the one interesting game this week. Both have struggled to maintain some sort of identity, and with Roethlisberger back under center, the Steelers are once again a team to fear. However, that Seattle defense is still dangerous – especially when the offense can’t hear themselves think under that CenturyLink crowd. The absence of Marshawn Lynch in Seattle’s backfield won’t be as big a factor as many would believe, as rookie Thomas Rawls has been filling that void nicely. I expect a shoot out, and Pittsburgh’s defense will be the deciding factor here. Still, I give Seattle a win at home. Mostly because one of their cheerleaders is my favorite in the entire league.

Zoe from Seattle, I'm... I just... damn, girl.

Zoe from Seattle, I’m… I just… damn, girl.

SEATTLE

BMK: Again, I concur with DT. This is the most intriguing matchup this week. Seattle’s typical dominance at home is under some serious fire this year, and the Steelers have an excellent passing attack.  Normally I’d go with the home team, but I’m taking the Steelers here in an upset.  Big Ben is a better QB than Wilson, and while the Steelers D isn’t what it used to be, there’s still enough firepower to harass Wilson and get him to make bad decisions. Of course, since I sort of hate the Seahawks, this could all be wishful thinking, but we’ll see…

I can never hate on a dog, especially a pug. However, Stewie's people need to get with it...

I can never hate on a dog, especially a pug. However, Stewie’s people need to get with it…

STEELERS

———-

PATRIOTS at BRONCOS

D.T.: Sadly, we’ve been denied what might have been the final Manning/Brady rematch. And honestly, at this point, it wouldn’t have been much of a competition. Brock “Pockalypse” Osweiler showed competence in both his showings against Kansas City and Chicago, but we’re talking about the big leagues, now. A Patriots/Broncos game is going to put him to the test and while I don’t think he’ll flounder, I think the Patriots will take full advantage of the situation, and continue their ill-begotten undefeated streak.

Kristen from New England, I am thankful for you!

Kristen from New England, I am thankful for you!

PATRIOTS

BMK: This is my second most intriguing match of the week. Like DT, I’m not entirely sold on the Patriots. Their schedule doesn’t feature a lot of impressive teams so I think they’re coasting on the mystique of the Belichick/Brady partnership a bit. That said, 10-0 is 10-0.

But I’m a believer in Denver’s offense, and they’re at home this week. Obviously, Brady is better than Osweiler, but Brady needs someone to throw the ball to. Injuries are piling up for New England and at some point, that will catch up to the Patriots. I mean, it just has to. Right?

Right?

Finally getting along...

Finally getting along…

BRONCOS

Incidentally, I went to law school with a former Patriots cheerleader.  I have no idea what she’s doing now, but she was a very popular Torts TA.

That’s teaching assistant, you pervs.

———-

RAVENS at BROWNS

D.T.: Well, the Johnny Football saga may have come to an end in Cleveland. He was asked to take it easy and keep quiet during the bye week and little Johnny – fresh out of rehab – went straight to the nearest party and grabbed a bottle of champagne. No one’s surprised, and I don’t think anyone really cares anymore. Except for Josh McCown, who will be getting the start against Baltimore this week. If he can keep from getting injured, he’ll have an okay day against that Ravens defense. I don’t know if it’s really fair to call this an upset, but I think the Browns have a legitimate shot at tying the Ravens at 3rd in the division. But really, this is anyone’s game.

…and apparently, Cleveland doesn’t have cheerleaders (which accounts for much of their fans’ unrest, I’m sure) so here’s my girl Zoe again.

I am so thankful.

I am so thankful.

BMK: Oh my dear sweet Lord…This is the Monday night matchup.  Is there a channel we can watch some tape-delayed curling from Canada or some shit?  This is just embarrassing, NFL.

You'd think a team that calls its stadium the dog pound would have lots of dog photos...

You’d think a team that calls its stadium the dog pound would have lots of dog photos...

And speaking of embarrassing, DT’s slavish devotion to a cheerleader that he’ll never, ever interact with is getting a bit much. Ease up, killer.

"Really, Krol?"

“Really, Krol?”

—————–

 

D.T.: And that does it for this week! Have a very Happy Thanksgiving everyone, and a safe holiday weekend! I’m thankful for all of you (though not as thankful as I am for Zoe).

 

BMK: Another week in the books. Enjoy your friends, family, and most of all, enjoy football. Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you next week.

See? I can be sincere. Sometimes.

Oh, and since DT never sends me the standings anymore, here’s your weekly dose of Kat Dennings.

Smart AND sexy

Smart AND sexy

This post was written and compiled to the Spotify Dark Techno playlist and the voice in my head telling me to start smelling what the Rock is cooking.

 

4th and Krol: Week Nine Picks!

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Week Nine: Is this the week we go over the line?

Week Nine: Is this the week we go over the line?

D.T.: Hell of a week eight, folks. Certainly more interesting on and off the field than I expected, at least. We saw some record-setting nail-biter games, the return of Peyton Manning, the utter incompetence of Carolina’s stadium security, and more! And as of writing this on Tuesday morning, we’re seeing the completion of San Francisco’s implosion and the firing of Ken Whisenhunt from head coach of the Tennessee Titans. It may only be 9am where I am, but as an unabashed Cardinals’ fan…

Good day

And Week 8 looks halfway decent. Well, not really, but let’s ride this wave of euphoria for as long as it lasts!

BMK: Yeah, the games were mostly interesting, but there is a significant lack of off-field salaciousness and lunacy, something we here at 4th and Krol are very interested in.  Frankly, it was a boring week eight. Except for PETA going after Dez Bryant for having a monkey. Hearing about that story warmed the cockles of my black heart.

On to the picks!

———-

BROWNS at BENGALS

D.T.: The Browns gave the Cardinals quite the scare in the first half of last week’s game, until Arizona remembered how to play football and returned from the locker room to dominate with more than 20 unanswered points. As a Browns fan, I imagine that felt like the clouds parting during a torrential rain, the sun shining down on you, and then realizing the clouds were pierced by a meteor headed right for your face. Now imagine first responders picking up your remains, then delivering them to your enemy’s house so they can pee on them.

BENGALS

BMK: I’m late with column again. But I was taking the Bengals anyway, for all the reasons that DT delineates above.  But for one more: the Ginger of Doom is one sexy, sexy man.

"You're just mad cause I got Kat Dennings's phone number..."

“You’re just mad cause I got Kat Dennings’s phone number…”

BENGALS

———-

PACKERS at PANTHERS

D.T.: The Panthers, too, had quite a scare on Monday Night against the Colts. That game was in the proverbial bag before Indy rallied and came from behind in the fourth quarter to force a overtime showdown and ultimately a very narrow Carolina win. They’re hosting Green Bay next — a squad that just had their asses handed to them by Denver. Rodgers was held to only 77 yards passing in a dominant show of force by the Broncos secondary, and made room for a startling return to form for Peyton Manning.

"About to make a startling return to his hotel room to cry."

About to make a startling return to his hotel room to cry.

I think just about everyone had Green Bay pegged to win on Sunday, it’ll be interesting to see how the Packers bounce back from their first loss, and how Carolina’s secondary uses the game tape to attack Rodgers’ offense. When it came down to it, Carolina’s defense is great, but they were exhausted in the end by Andrew Luck’s weapons… and Aaron Rodgers has a lot more weapons at his disposal.

PACKERS

BMK: That Monday night game was interesting.  It was good seeing Andrew Luck going off the way we know he can. And it got Pep Hamilton fired, so everything worked out great!

Except, like, for the Colts, I guesss.

"Yeah? Least I got a job Krol...wait, hold on, Irsay's on the phone..."

“Yeah? Least I got a job Krol…wait, hold on, Irsay’s on the phone…”

Anyway, I expect Aaron Rodgers to take out his misery on Cam Newton and the Panthers.

PACKERS

———-

REDSKINS at PATRIOTS

D.T.: Well, this just isn’t fair.

PATRIOTS

BMK: This is my UPSE—Ugh. I can’t even kid around about this anymore. This game is going to be ugly. Ugly like that baby alien from V.

This thing looked fake as hell, but I still get choked up when it dies. Oh. Spoilers.

This thing looked fake as hell, but I still get choked up when it dies. Oh. Yeah. Spoilers.

You guys remember V?  That was a great show. Story goes, V’s showrunner Kenneth Johnson originally pitched a WWII story, and being that this was in the 80s and before Speilberg showed us how cool WWII could be, the network passed. Johnson, undeterred said, “Well, fuck it.  What if the Nazis were aliens.”

And on that day, V was born.

Oh, yeah. The pick…

PATRIOTS

———-

TITANS at SAINTS

D.T.: Tennessee has suffered their final loss in the clusterfuck that was the Whisenhunt Era. With ol’ Ken being fired, now Mariota and Mettenberger have a real chance at becoming NFL-caliber quarterbacks. The Titans probably don’t have a real chance at taking on an opponent like the Saints just yet, though. Especially after that ridiculous, record-setting performance from Drew Brees and his offense. In case you missed it, Breesus, King of the Drews, tied the all-time record for touchdown passes in a single game. The Saints are going to be fired the fuck up after that win against the Giants, and the Titans are going to be in full transition mode. I wouldn’t expect a Miami-esque reinvigoration for a win. It’ll be the Saints.

SAINTS

BMK: Whisenhunt is gone, but like Newt said in Aliens, it won’t make any difference.

Hey, whaddaya know? Newt's aged pretty well. Mostly.

Hey, whaddaya know? Newt’s aged pretty well. Mostly.

"Take it easy Sigourney. I was making a reference to her famous line in Aliens about the aliens coming out at night."

“Take it easy Sigourney. I was making a reference to her famous line in Aliens about the aliens coming out at night.”

SAINTS

———-

DOLPHINS at BILLS

D.T.: Speaking of Miami (remember that segue thing we talked about, Krol? How nice was that one?), they’re paying a visit to Buffalo this week. The Bills are fresh off a bye, and it’s very likely that Tyrod Taylor will return as their starting QB. Rookie Sammy Watkins, however, may take another week off while all of us little people work our little jobs in our little lives.

"Oooh, shit. Look at this catch. This one catch just made more money than everyone reading this will make in a month. And it's only practice."

“Oooh, shit. Look at this catch. This one catch just made more money than everyone reading this will make in a month. And it’s only practice.”

I’m going with the Dolphins on this one, just because.

DOLPHINS
BMK: I’m going with the Buffalo Bills.  Just to spite DT.

BILLS
———-

RAMS at VIKINGS

D.T.: A deceptively interesting match-up. Two fucking terrible passing offenses, and two great defenses. Neither of these teams’ QBs are having much luck this season, but both boast incredible talent at running back. Even the Vikings have conceded that Todd Gurley is the next best thing running, and even though he’s young enough to pull a switch off a tree for Adrian Peterson…

"Come on, man. Like you've never brutally beaten a child before."

“Come on, man. Like you’ve never brutally beaten a child before.”

…he’s likely going to host another running back clinic on Sunday. Whether or not the rest of the Rams show up will be another story. This is a tough game to call, honestly. These two teams seem to be pretty evenly matched, though I’ll give it to the slight edge the Rams have defensively.

RAMS

BMK: Good God, Adrian Peterson is a vile human being.

Anyway…

The Rams are becoming a trendy pick for an NFC Wild Card berth. DT and I differ on that (and if you listened to last week’s podcast, you’d know why…), but DT is wrong. So very, very wrong.

The Rams are for real. If they had a decent QB, they’d win the NFC West. Luckily, they don’t. But it won’t matter here.

RAMS

———-

JAGUARS at JETS

D.T.: I don’t get you, New York. You hold your own against the Patriots, then lose to Oakland? Sure, I think Krol is right on the money in thinking that the Raiders could play the upsetter and vie for a wild card spot. But are Carr and Cooper really good enough to punch through a defense like what the Jets have going? Let’s see what happens when that defense comes up against another underdog team trying hard to put something together before it’s too late. I think New York bounces back, but I think the Jags get a few body shots in.

JETS

BMK: This is one of those matchups I can’t get excited about enough to even write a pithy dismissal. So here’s Fireman Ed.

Ed...take a break, broham.

Ed…take a break, broham.

JETS

———-

RAIDERS at STEELERS

D.T.: So, the Steelers lost to the Bengals, despite having Big Ben back under center. The game turned out to be one of the better showings on Sunday, with both teams giving it their all, and playing hard. Perhaps a little too hard for star Pittsburgh runner, Le’Veon Bell, who suffered his second consecutive season-ending knee injury. It wasn’t an ACL injury, though, which gives him plenty of time to recover and be ready for the 2016 season. And just enough time to figure out away to get busted for weed again, and miss the first couple of games despite being healthy.

"...yeah, probably."

“…yeah, probably.”

Pittsburgh is lucky they have Williams backing him up. Just for fun, I’m picking the Raiders to take a narrow win from the vulnerable Steelers.

RAIDERS

BMK: This is my game of the week. As a resident of the East Bay, I’ve adopted the Raiders as my AFC team, and I’m interested to see what they can do against the Steelers. Oakland looked good against the Jets and the Chargers, but let’s not forget that Rivers has no support and Oakland was playing against Geno in the Jets game.  Unlike Bill Romanowski (who, by the way, is an insane person), I don’t think the Raiders are going to win. Winning in Pittsburgh is tough (I should know; when I moved there it started a personal four year losing streak) and the Raiders don’t have enough of a ground game to keep the Steelers honest in the secondary.  But I wouldn’t be surprised if they did win.

And no, Bay Area Radio People, David Carr is not a top five QB. Jesus Christ, people…

STEELERS

———-

GIANTS at BUCCANEERS

D.T.: The Bucs stole a win from the Falcons after a bizarre showing of Atlanta turnovers, a 17 point lead thrown away, and a final interception of Matt Ryan in overtime to close the deal. Atlanta is a weird freaking team, especially in divisional games.

"Yeah, well, you're a weird freaking guy, especially in your FACE!"

“Yeah, well, you’re a weird freaking guy, especially in your FACE!”

The Giants are a weird freaking team as well, which I think poises Tampa Bay to take a home win. Jameis Winston with his good friends Evans and V-Jax, coupled with the resurgence of Doug “Don’t Call Me Muscle Hamster” Martin) are more than enough for the Giants’ dead-last defense to handle.

BUCS

BMK: The Giants exploded offensively last week. I don’t expect that to happen again, but I like Eli Manning more than I like Winston right now. Manning has a QBR of 99, compared to Winston’s 85.6, and the only thing Manning’s ever stolen was New Yoker’s hearts.

Isn't he dreamy?

Awww…

GIANTS

———-

FALCONS at NINERS

D.T.: So, the Niners have shipped off Vernon Davis to the Broncos for a couple of late round picks, and now the team has made the decision to bench Colin Kaepernick in favor of Blaine Gabbert. All that’s left now is for Levi Stadium to implode upon itself like the house in Poltergeist. I can’t think of another instance where a team has been so mishandled and has fallen into such disarray in such a short amount of time. I honestly hope Kaepernick gets traded by the deadline today (Tuesday), and he gets a fresh start on a team that knows what do with him, and doesn’t attempt to crucify him at every turn. All that said, the Falcons are going to fucking dominate the Niners in such fashion that the ink in their fans’ neck tattoos will fall out.

"Oh, hey... uh... sorry about that thing I said about your face."

“Oh, hey… uh… sorry about that thing I said about your face.”

FALCONS

BMK: Ugh. This is going to be a bloodbath. The Niners are in the toilet and will be for the foreseeable future. They can’t run, they can’t pass, and they can’t defend either. They’re a mess from top to bottom, and the Falcons will come in to Levi’s Stadium and just clean their clocks. It’ll be borderline ugly. Too much, even for me.

I’ll still watch it though, and laugh my fool head off. Because I’m a terrible person.

FALCONS

———-

BRONCOS at COLTS

D.T.: Kubiak, you see what happens when you let Peyton Manning run the offense again? The clocks turn back five years, he throws long balls with perfect spirals, and leads the team to a stunning victory against an undefeated Super Bowl favorite with another all-time great QB. And everyone watching was happy, because we got to see Happy Manning instead of Grumpy Manning, and even heard some Omaha’s.

"Operation Papa John is now in effect. We must kill the Manning... hey, have you been working out?"

“Operation Papa John is now in effect. We must kill the Manning… hey, have you been working out?”

This week, Manning makes what may be his final return to Indianapolis to take on an ailing Colts team. Last time, Jim Irsay managed to play the psychological edge and threw Manning off his game with a backhanded thank you ceremony for Peyton (and by playing with the stadium open to fuck with his weakness to the cold). But even such underhanded plays won’t be enough when Andrew Luck is on Pagano and Hamilton’s leash, and that Denver Defense is staring him down. The Broncos will go 8-0 and Pagano will definitely be fired during Indy’s bye week.

BRONCOS

BMK: Is Peyton Manning done?  Despite last week’s outing, I’d say that he is.

Physical skills don’t deteriorate on a 90 degree curve.  Unless, like, Peyton losses a leg or something. Maybe not even then. (see Leppard, Def). That said, there’s plenty of evidence in the past nine weeks that he’s lost a lot of his physical skills and it’s because of that, I don’t like them to go deep in the playoffs this year, despite the fact they could go 12-4 or higher. The window is closed.

That said, they’re going to kill the Colts.

BRONCOS

———-

EAGLES at COWBOYS

D.T.: Well, this should be a cluster fuck, and fun to watch just for the sheer spectacle of it all. Cassel and Weeden being fucking terrible, Greg Hardy already acting as poison on the sidelines, and playing a divisional rival will show the Cowboys unravel even further. But don’t expect a dominant showing from the Eagles, either. They’ll win, but they’re not all that.

EAGLES

BMK: When the Niners bum me out too much this weekend, I’m turning to this game. As my esteemed partner from behind the Saguaro curtain pointed out, this should be a complete clusterfuck. With any luck, Loki will appear in the middle of the field and take Greg Hardy away to service Frost Giants in Hel. But that probably won’t happen.

It’ll be Niffleheim.

EAGLES

———-

BEARS at CHARGERS

D.T.: This week ends with an utter non-event of a prime time game. Both of these teams are spent, with no hope of for the playoffs. Under different circumstances, this might have been an interesting game, with both teams no longer giving a shit, and playing for pride. But neither team has any. The Chargers are moving to LA and will lose Rivers in the process (he refused to sign a contract extension for fear of having to move there), the Bears are going nowhere (geographically and otherwise).

"Well, D.T.'s definitely goin' somewhere. H-E-Double-Hockey-Sticks."

“Well, D.T.’s definitely goin’ somewhere. H-E-Double-Hockey-Sticks.”

I don’t even know… Chargers, I guess? It’s a home game, and Rivers is still fucking ridiculous under center.

CHARGERS
BMK: This is the kind of Monday night match that just gets everyone excited. Who’ll suck least and win?  Tune in and find out!

BEARS
———-

D.T.: And that’s it for Week Nine! Week Ten comes right after this week, and also has football games scheduled to take place there-in! Divisional match-ups abound with the Bills and Jets kicking off on Thursday night, followed by the Lions and Packers, Browns and Steelers, Chiefs and Broncos and the much-awaited NFC West showdown between the Cardinals and Seahawks.

Ain't gonna see any of this shit, Seattle Fans.

Ain’t gonna see any of this shit, Seattle Fans.

I’ll be spending next weekend in Denver, attending the Broncos and Chiefs game from bitchin’ (and expensive) lower-bowl seats, then high-tailing it to the nearest pub to catch the Cardinals game on Sunday Night Football, and sampling as any unique and delicious Colorado microbrews as time and constitution will allow. Fear not though, dear reader, for there shall still be an article for you in week 10, as long as there is alcohol in my stomach and football in my heart!

 

BMK: Week nine is in the books! While DT is off sampling microbrews and other…recreational delicacies in Colorado, I’ll be here, fighting the good fight against oppression, tyranny, and good aesthetic taste.

And remember kids: your mother may disown you, your spouse will leave you, everything you’ve ever believed in will let you down…except us here at 4th and Krol.

Thanks for reading and listening.

And now…your weekly dose of Kat Dennings…

 

My life is gonna suck when that restraining order kicks in...

My life is gonna suck when that restraining order kicks in…

 

This was written and compiled listening to the 80s Music that Doesn’t Suck Playlist on Spotify and that nagging voice in my head wondering if left the iron on. Spoilers: I didn’t.

THUD NFL Picks Week 5

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Week 5

Week 5

D.T.: The thing we love most about the NFL is often what makes it frustrating: the natural unpredictability of each and every game, in each and every week. Football is arguably one of the most difficult sports to predict (just ask the guy who rage-quit my fantasy league on Monday), but it’s also the reason we keep coming back. For ever bet we lose, every dive we take in fantasy, and every time we swear we’ll find something better to do next Sunday, we come back. It’s the investment in something you think you can guess the outcome of, but know you have a 50/50 chance of getting right. It’s the excitement of believing your team can win the next one, even though they lost the last. Week four of the NFL’s regular season was a shining example of why we love football so much, and why it drives some of us crazy. Week five is likely to follow suit.

BMK: Last week the main storyline was “Is this formerly elite team REALLY this shitty?”  This week, the storyline is: “Are these teams really that good.”  Arizona will have a tough match-up in Denver this week.  If they win, then we’ll all know AZ is for real. If they lose (SPOILER: they will), it all depends on how.  Manning needs nine more touchdowns to tie with Favre’s career record.  If Peyton does this in this game, check the emergency rooms for me and DT.

VIKINGS at PACKERS

D.T.: Last week, the Packers surprised everyone by… well, playing like the Packers for a change. In their first meeting with bitter rival Chicago, the team looked poised and composed, and gave the daunting Bears’ secondary a real run for their money. Rodgers and Nelson showed incredible chemistry and even Eddie Lacy decided to show up and make a few plays. The Vikings, in Teddy Bridgewater’s first outing as a true starting Quarterback, shocked everyone by defeating a Falcons squad high on their historic stomping of Tampa Bay in week three. I’m not sure if the meeting of these two fired up teams will be as explosive as their week four match-ups, however. I think the Packers, if they can hold on to the lessons they’ve learned in prior weeks and keep their momentum going, can overcome the Vikings and get themselves back on track.

What we all HOPE this game will be...

What we all HOPE this game will be…

...and what it'll likely end up being.

…and what it’ll likely end up being.

PACKERS

BMK: Ponder vs. Rodgers!  A Thursday night QB Duel!

Pssh…not at all. This one’s over before it starts. Oh, and by the way, Chavez, I did you a favor last week by picking the Bears to win. This week though…

PACKERS

—–

BEARS at PANTHERS

D.T.: The Bears defense has been killing it, their offense is picking up the pace. Carolina, however, is allowing their weaknesses to show through more with each passing week. The Panthers’ offense is still struggling to click, and their defense is having a difficult time pulling it together without Greg Hardy. There’s still some greatness on the Panthers’ roster, and in a division that’s absolutely bonkers so far, they have a chance to pull it together. Especially if they keep giving it to this beautiful son of a bitch:

This guy is prettier than some of the girls I've dated. And you know the D.T. only dates dimes.

This guy is prettier than some of the girls I’ve dated. And you know the D.T. only dates dimes.

Ultimately, I think the Bears are on too big of a roll, and Carolina’s not going to be able to keep up. Oh, and here’s a photo of the Panthers’ cheerleaders dancing in the rain. Just because.

Panthers Cheerleaders

Panthers Cheerleaders

BEARS

BMK: Here’s the problem: I’m not sure I trust Jay Cutler.  Sometimes he looks great (second half of the 49ers game), other times, he don’t look so good. However, Cutler’s been pretty good on the road (106.3 QB rating) and the Panthers don’t have any real offensive playmakers.  All the Panthers’s playmakers know which fork to use and always remember to send their hostess a thank you note.

See what I did there?

Yeah yeah yeah….

These bears do well away from home too...

These bears do well away from home too…

BEARS
—–

BROWNS at TITANS

D.T.: Raise your hand if you had any idea the Browns were on a bye last week. I tease, but the Browns have been pretty competitive so far this season, and when they’re not trying to pull trick plays that would embarrass a high school coach, they kind of look like a halfway-competent team. The Titans have lost three straight after their surprising win over the Chiefs, leaving many to think it may have been a fluke, and I’m inclined to agree. My prediction? The Browns find themselves at 2-2, and don’t have a terribly difficult time getting there.

BROWNS

BMK: The Browns are probably 3rd best team in the AFC North. But they’ll be more than a match for the Titans.  It’ll be like that time in Return of the Jedi when the Stormtroopers were kicking Ewok ass. Before the shot of the dead Ewok which bummed everyone out.   Except Ken Wisenhunt. He likes dead Ewoks.  He likes them so much he has a picture of one on his play calling sheet. That and a picture of Rita Hayworth.

Ken Wisenhunt is a strange, strange man.

Inside Ken Whisenhunt's mind...

Inside Ken Whisenhunt’s mind…

BROWNS
—–

RAMS at EAGLES

D.T.: The Rams have fought hard to prove themselves more than a broken team with too many holes, and fared better against the Cowboys in week three than the Saints did last week. The Eagles, in their own narrow loss against San Francisco, proved that their hurry up offense needs some work against a determined defense. It’s these two scenarios that make this game more interesting than one would expect. The Rams’ secondary is still formidable, and they’re every bit as capable of slowing up the Eagles as the Niners were. Expect two teams to show up, points to be scored, fantasy owners to continue being nervous about Foles, but an Eagles victory by a narrow margin. Man, imagine what a team would look like if you combined the Rams’ defense and the Eagles’ offense.

I just gave myself chills.

I just gave myself chills.

EAGLES

BMK: Last week the Eagles proved that you can’t count on miracle finishes every week.  At some point your offense needs to score.  At the very least, your offense needs to pick up a first goddamn down. The Eagles’s offense looked so bad against the 49ers, I’m tempted to pick the Rams. And they’ve started slow in all of their games so far.  In fact, now that I’m thinking about it, I am going to pick the Rams.  To hell with it – I’m living dangerously!

RAMS
—–

FALCONS at GIANTS

D.T.: Two teams who, thus far, have walked all over others that can’t get their acts together, and fall apart when playing teams that can. The Falcons have had strong victories over the Saints (who are perhaps the most confusing mess in the league right now) and the Buccaneers (a win that will likely live on in infamy for the rest of the season), but were absolutely trounced by the Vikings last week, and couldn’t hold their own against the impressive Bengals. The Giants are just as terribly inconsistent, having beaten the Texans and Redskins but failing miserably against the Cardinals and Lions. If I had to forego all statistical and logical analysis and go with my gut, I’d honestly give it to the Giants. They’re a mess, but at least they’ve lost to teams who deserved to win.

GIANTS
BMK: The Falcons are banged up and their defense is terrible.

And that’s still better analysis you get from Deion Sanders.

GIANTS

—–

BUCCANEERS at SAINTS

D.T.: Back on the topic if unpredictability in the NFL: last week’s outings for the Bucs and Saints were jaw-droppers. After the way they’ve played up to this point, no one expected Tampa Bay to sneak in a win against the Steelers, and the only logical explanation for it is the lack of consistency from Pittsburgh’s defense, and some flat out luck on Mike Glennon’s part. The Saints should have come into this season looking like unstoppable Super Bowl contenders, and last week they looked like the aliens from Space Jam had stolen all their talent.

Yeah, I made a fucking Space Jam reference. That's what this season is doing to me.

Yeah, I made a fucking Space Jam reference. That’s what this season is doing to me.

I honestly have no idea how to predict the outcome of this game, because neither team is predictable at this point. But, going by sheer talent involved, and the fact that New Orleans has to turn this thing around at some point… well, there’s no better time to do that than this week.

SAINTS

BMK: The Bucs beat the Steelers but there’s no way this team beats the Saints.  Not when the Saints are at home and coming off a humiliating performance against the Cowboys.

I think it’s probably safe to pull the Saints out of the elite category, but even if they’re just very good, they’re still better than this Tampa Bay team. Yes, the Saints defense stinks more than Rob Ryan after  getting the meat sweats at Fogo de Chao, but they should be able to handle the 31st ranked passing attack. At least I hope.

Crap. Now I want Fogo de Chao.

SAINTS

—–

TEXANS at COWBOYS

D.T.: A grudge match to move on from 3-1 and claim Texas supremacy (which I know is an oxymoron). I don’t trust the Cowboys’ win over New Orleans as a righting of the ship. It was a wild fluke against a team that has some serious issues to work out, and I think the best thing they have going for them is the running game. The Texans’ defense is too good, and if there’s one thing I can predict about this game with confidence, it’s Romo tossing some turnovers. Maybe even to JJ Watt, who at this point must be neck and neck in touchdowns with Megatron. I think the Texans surprise everyone with an upset and walk out of Dallas the victors.

And I end up killing someone after seeing this commercial twelve times before the half.

And I end up killing someone after seeing this commercial twelve times before the half.

TEXANS

BMK:  I’m giving it to the Cowboys this week. DeMarco Murray is running like crazy and Romo hasn’t been stupid lately.  A great recipe for a win. Plus I hate that stupid JJ Watt commercial.  It fills me with the hatred of a 1000 suns. Or maybe more like 992 suns, but the difference is negligible.  Seriously, when you already got 992 suns, will 8 more make a difference?  I don’t think so, but I’ll let history be the judge.

I need a job.

COWBOYS
—–

BILLS at LIONS

D.T.: The Bills are back in quarterback controversy with the decision to bench E.J. Manuel in favor of Kyle Orton. It’s not the most confidence-instilling decision, but the Bills passing game has been a bit of a joke this far, anyway. The Lions passing game is better, and could be fantastic if Megatron would get healthy, and the franchise would shift him back to relevance instead of decoy status. Overall, the Bills are at a precarious crossroads, and the Lions are the superior team. I expect them to hold down the fort in Detroit.

LIONS

BMK:  I’m going with the Lions here.  I like Stafford and Johnson at home. For those of you that don’t know, I’m referring to Calvin Johnson. I refuse to use that stupid nickname.  Unlike my partner DT, who’ll fall for any nicknamed receiver.

LIONS
—–

RAVENS at COLTS

D.T.: The Colts are riding high at the moment, and as an unabashed Andrew Luck fan, I’m happy to see it. They were off to a terrible start, going 0-2 in the first couple of weeks, but they’ve looked dynamite in their last two outings. However, their defense will be starting an inexperienced safety in Sergio Brown (most known for special teams), with LaRon Landry having been suspended for four games. This leaves a real soft spot for the Ravens’ offense to exploit, and they’re capable of doing so. The Colts have historically walked over the Ravens, however, and I don’t see the Ravens stealing a win in Lucas Oil Stadium. If Luck can keep throwing the way he has, and the ball keeps getting fed to Ahmad Bradshaw over Trent Richardson…

Don't make that face. You know you're terrible.

Don’t make that face. You know you’re terrible.

…the offense should have no trouble securing the victory.

COLTS
BMK:  I’m going with the Colts on this one. The Ravens and Colts, statistically, are fairly similar and Joe Flacco just irritates me. So I’m going with the home team.

COLTS

—–

STEELERS at JAGUARS

D.T.: It’s just a matter of time…

Jax Bear

Jax in London

But, American would like to keep the blond in the front, if that's okay.

But, American would like to keep the blond in the front, if that’s okay.

STEELERS

—–

BMK: A pulsar (portmanteau of pulsating star) is a highly magnetized, rotating neutron star that emits a beam of electromagnetic radiation. This radiation can only be observed when the beam of emission is pointing toward the Earth, much the way a lighthouse can only be seen when the light is pointed in the direction of an observer, and is responsible for the pulsed appearance of emission. Neutron stars are very dense, and have short, regular rotational periods. This produces a very precise interval between pulses that range from roughly milliseconds to seconds for an individual pulsar.

The precise periods of pulsars make them useful tools. Observations of a pulsar in a binary neutron star system were used to indirectly confirm the existence of gravitational radiation. The first extrasolar planets were discovered around a pulsar, PSR B1257+12. Certain types of pulsars rival atomic clocks in their accuracy in keeping time.

STEELERS

This is the Game of the Week

This is the Game of the Week

Cardinals at Broncos

D.T.: Two teams I know very well, and a match-up I’ve been simultaneously excited for and dreading since the regular season schedule was announced. I’m born and raised in Arizona, so the Cardinals are my team. My family is a bunch of hardcore, Raider-Hater Broncos fans from Colorado. I own an equal number of jerseys from both teams (3), and if not for work deadlines, I’d be attending the game in Denver, getting rowdy with my cousins. I’m hoping for a great game (because the last thing I want to see is one of these teams get crushed), and for both squads to bring their A-games. Both teams are coming in rested from a bye, so we just might see an excellent match-up here, folks.

The Cardinals will be without Quarterback Carson Palmer, as a nerve injury he suffered in week one has suffered a major setback, and he’s unable to throw. Drew Stanton looked good in the two games he’s filled in, however, and he has one of the best receiver corps in the league to lean on. Backing him him on the ground is Andre Ellington, whose toughness in playing through a foot injury has been admirable, and hopefully his week off will have him back at full strength. Arizona’s offensive line should give them both ample time to make decisions, even in the face of Denver’s daunting secondary.

Denver put a lot of thought and money into their defense this past off-season, with the most notable acquisition being DeMarcus Ware, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys. They’ve put him to good use alongside Bronco veterans Von Miller and Derek Wolfe, and they’ve created a defensive backfield that’s frankly pretty scary. The Cardinals’ secondary has proven that even without Karlos Dansby, Daryl Washington and recently-injured Darnell Dockett, they’re still a force in the league. They’ve held fast to a 3-0 record, celebrating a win over Colin Kaepernick’s San Francisco offense before taking the week off. But let’s be honest: Kaepernick is no Peyton Manning.

With Wes Welker back in the folk, Manning has a lot of weapons at his disposal. Emmanuel Sanders, believed to be a stopgap of sorts in Welker’s absence, has proven himself much more, and has found himself a spot in regular rotation. The Cardinals defense will find themselves truly challenged in trying to cover Sanders, Deymarius Thomas, Wes Welker and a shining example of Arizona’s biggest weakness: covering Tight End Julius Thomas. Arizona will need all of their faculties, and key players like safety Tyrann Mathieu will need to play at an enhanced level to keep up. On the flip side, the back of the Broncos’ defense, lead by Cornerback Aqib Talib will be pushed to keep up with the quadruple threat of Larry Fitzgerald, speedster John Brown, Michael Floyd and Jaron Brown. Drew Stanton has shown a lot of proficiency in spreading the passes around, and the Arizona offense has become tricky to cover.

Arizona’s defense will be the key to this game, and Denver knows it. Their one big weakness these past couple of seasons has been NFC West defenses, and they’ve likely watched hours of game tape to formulate a plan. If the Arizona defense can maintain focus and fluidity, they have the ability to contain this game and allow the offense to do their part. But… fuck, man. It’s the Broncos.

Can I just have 60 minutes of this, instead?

Can I just have 60 minutes of this, instead?

BRONCOS
BMK: This is the ultimate test for Arizona. As an old time Cardinals fan (I wasn’t born there, but I did grow up there), I fully expect them to lose.  But I want them to lose well.  There would no shame in losing to Peyton Manning by a touchdown, especially considering all the losses Arizona has had on its defensive side this year.  It would be disappointing, but not totally deflating. Anything more than a touchdown though…

Truth be told, this is not the Peyton Manning of yesteryear.  As the Seahawks showed, he is beatable, and the fanboy in me wants to think that Arizona’s combination of guile, luck, and skill in the secondary can cause some havoc for Mr. Manning.  But as my man DT pointed out above, Denver has plenty of weapons.  Throw in the fact that Manning is one of the most cerebral quarterbacks to ever play the game, and it starts looking bad for the Cardinals in a hurry.

Of course, Arizona is not without offensive weapons. Arizona has two very good receivers in Floyd and Fitzgerald, at least two excellent ones after them (the Browns, Ginn).  So if your Denver, who do you cover? Futher, Arizona has a decent tight end in Carlson, and Ellington is no slouch when it comes to catching the ball either.  Stanton will have to get the ball out quickly (the Massie vs. Von Miller match-up doesn’t fill my heart with joy), and if he does, and doesn’t turn the ball over, this game might be more competitive than I’m expecting.

At the end of the day, I’m sure Denver will win. And when have I ever been wrong?

BRONCOS
—–

CHIEFS at 49ERS

D.T.: The Chiefs enjoyed a stunning victory over the Patriots last week, in yet another example of unpredictability in the NFL. However, I think the 49ers are going to bounce back from their loss against the Eagles, and return to form with a victory at home. A no-doubt bitter return for Chiefs Quarterback Alex Smith, he’s likely eager to stick it to the team that let him go in favor of the younger, flashier, tattooier Colin Kaepernick. It was Kaepernick who showed Smith up during a stint on the injured list, and claimed his spot as the team’s starting passer (and subsequently lead the team to a Super Bowl). Smith brings with him star Running Back Jamaal Charles, who finally launched himself back into relevance, and the two of them have the opportunity to do some real damage. But, Kaep is going to want to prove that he’s the big dog to his bosses, even with San Francisco’s questionable atmosphere behind the scenes.

49ERS

BMK: A lot of experts (and DT – zing!) are picking the 49ers in this game. I think they’re right (THIS TIME!).  But I would not be surprised if the Chiefs took it. Jamaal Charles is looking like a beast lately. And by that I mean he’s dressing like a furry.

I’m not sold on the 49ers at all. Now, true, I am a dyed-in-the-wool 49er hater, but how can you watch their first four games and think this team is elite?  They still have a very good defense, but their offensive line is having problems and Vernon Davis is officially listed as Questionable.   I’m going with the Chiefs here.

Incidentally, I read the ESPN profile on Jim Harbaugh.  It says he lacks empathy, has trouble maintaining relationships with people, and needs to hate his opponent in order to beat them. Is it just me, or does that sound like the clinical definition of a sociopath?

CHIEFS
—–

JETS at CHARGERS

D.T.: Here’s the thing about the New York/San Diego game: The Jets have an absolutely stellar rushing defense, and the Chargers have virtually no running game at all. So, the Jets’ one strength and superiority over the Chargers is likely to not even be a factor, because Phillip Rivers is good enough to control this game in the air without having to resort to running the ball, except in first down situations or garbage time. The Chargers come into this with an advantage in nearly every aspect, and I don’t think they’ll have a terribly difficult time adding another mark in their win column.

CHARGERS

BMK: Bolo Tie boy will pass all over the Jets terrible secondary.
—–

BENGALS at PATRIOTS

D.T.: Holy shit, what’s happened to the Patriots? They struggled to hold back the Oakland Raiders, and where absolutely stomped by the Chiefs last week. Brady has said he won’t think about retiring until he starts to suck, but what about switching to another team since the rest of his team sucks so badly? The Pats are going to be grossly outmatched by the Bengals, and this will be the Atlanta/Tampa Bay equivalent of week five. Expect Dalton, AJ Green and Gio Bernard to have themselves a day, and maybe expect Tom Brady to have himself a cry.

"If I played center, would they call them 'ginger snaps'?"

“If I played center, would they call them ‘ginger snaps’?”

—–

BMK: This week, the NFL world spent its collective time burying Tom Brady and the Patriots. It’s not entirely unjustified.  But what I think we’re seeing here is reality crashing in on Belichick’s hubris.  The Patriots have been doing very well for a long time without a roster of superior talent. Brady can usually overcome those problems, but what you’re seeing now is the result of Belichick believing he can win with anyone. That’s not the case, buddy.  Anyway, since I’m a bandwagon guy, I’m going with the Ginger of Doom.

BENGALS

SEAHAWKS at REDSKINS

D.T.: I should be thankful to the NFL for how they’re scheduling these Monday night games, because there’s nothing worse than being hung over on a Tuesday. With these MNF match-ups, there’s been barely enough reason to watch, much less invest money in alcohol. At least the Seahawks are guaranteed to net me some major points in fantasy. Goodnight, everyone!

SEAHAWKS

BMK: The Seattle Seahawks beat Peyton Manning twice.  Kirk Cousins is no Peyton Manning. Hell, he’s not even an Eli Manning at this point.

SEAHAWKS

BMK:  Please note, DT never sent me an updated gif of our scores through week four.  I think it’s because I pulled ahead of him in the standings. So I took the liberty of making my own. Which I think kicks a whole lot of ass.

If you were to open up my mind, this is what you'd see. That and brains. Lots of brains. Cause I'm smart and shit.

If you were to open up my mind, this is what you’d see. That and brains. Lots of brains. Cause I’m smart and shit.

This post was compiled and edited while listening to Spotify’s Deep Focus playlist.  That and my superego telling me that I’m terrible.  😦

Monday Night Debacle

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I’m not going to rehash the awful turd the Cardinals just shat on a national audience because I don’t do post-mortems.   The season is over, the team has quit, and the sooner this terrible experience is over, the better.  The only thing I hope for now is that the Cardinals lose every game from here on out and get the number one draft pick.  A draft pick that should be used on a QB, but, knowing this team, will probably be used on a Safety.

I do want to comment on one thing though.  A lot is being made out of Derek Anderson laughing on the sideline in the fourth quarter.  During the broadcast, Jon Gruden (who, in my estimation Jaws, is one of the most annoying commentators in sports) chastised Anderson for appearing to have a good time on the sideline during the lopsided loss.   He said he wanted Anderson to be bothered by the play of his team, and, to him it didn’t look like Anderson was sufficiently upset.  These comments, broadcasted nationally, got the press’s attention, and reporters asked Anderson about Gruden’s comments after the game. Anderson got pissed off and left.

Now, as a Cardinals fan, I applaud Anderson’s fire during the press conference. Maybe next week he can picture Gruden during the game and play better.  Or, at least with a little intensity.  However, I think Gruden is making a big deal out of nothing, Jaws.

If you watch the video from the Monday night game, yes, you see Anderson laughing weakly and smiling.  But that’s not all.  You also see Anderson hang his head and look at the ground with his shoulders slumped.  What does that body language tell you, Jaws? Clearly Anderson is upset.  Most people who are having a good time don’t hang their heads and avoid eye-contact, Jaws.

Yeah, this guy looks like he's having a great time, Jaws.

Anyway, this begs the question: what does Gruden want from Anderson?  Anderson, as the QB, has to inspire confidence in the other players. If he cannot do that (and I’m not saying he can), then he shouldn’t be in the position. Now what will inspire confidence in a blow-out like that?   Does Gruden think Anderson will inspire the team running around, foaming at the mouth, and screaming his fool head off?  Will that help the team play better? To see their QB acting like a lunatic? Or, does Gruden want Anderson to be morose and down, acting defeated.  Yeah, that’ll help inspire his teammates, Jaws.

Look Gruden, criticize his play, his accuracy, or his penchant for throwing 10 yards over a receiver, but leave the guy alone when it comes to his sideline demeanor.  Especially when there are plenty of examples of him acting pissed off when he misses a receiver or throws an interception.  I know — I’ve seen him do that a lot this season, Jaws.

Written by B. Michael Krol

November 30, 2010 at 10:46 am