Monday, March 22, 2010

The death of the NFL running back

Is this really it? Have we, the fans of the NFL, forgotten about the heroes of the backfield? Before you say no...think about it. What was the best play you remember from the Super Bowl? Was it Sean Payton's gutsy call for an onside kick at the start of the third or was it Tracy Porter's pick and subsequent TD that put the nail in the coffin for the Colts? The chances are pretty high that a running play isn't your best memory.

If you want further proof, what was the biggest headline for a running back last season? More than likely, it's between Chris Johnson trying to get the most rushing yards in a season or Adrian Peterson and his apparent fumble-itis. Is this what it comes down to for the mighty RB?

The top 5 offenses of last season:

1. New Orleans
2. Dallas(That's right!)
3. New England
4. Houston
5. Minnesota

Off the bat, we can cut out #3 and #4 because you have to add up 2 of the 4 Patriots running backs to get a decent amount of rushing yards for one running back in a season...only one of them rushed for more than 700 yards. Forget Houston because with Steve Slaton coughing up the ball, the Texans' offense rested in Matt Schaub's hands. We can rule out New Orleans because Drew Brees ruled the roost there. No, Reggie Bush is a surprise RB. In other words, he's used as a receiver(47 receptions for 335 yards) just as much as he's used in the backfield(70 carries for 390 yards).

So two of the top 5 offenses have at least one decent running back who has 1,000+ yards. Wait...not even my Dallas team has one RB that has broken 1,000 yards, but since they have the "three headed monster", we feel they're a pretty good rushing team.

The top 5 running backs(and where their team ranks in total offense)

1. Chris Johnson(Tennesee ranks #12)
2. Steven Jackson(St. Louis ranks #29)
3. Thomas Jones(NY Jets ranks #20)
4. Maurice Jones-Drew(Jacksonville ranks #18)
5. Adrian Peterson(Minnesota ranks #5)

These 5 guys have made some of the best top 10 plays of last season yet the bigger spotlight has been shined on the QB and the passing plays they make. Even with the "wildcat" craze, rushing takes a backseat to a strong arm.

Will the trend to downplay the running back ever change? Probably not as long as the topic of the day is Sam Bradford, Jimmy Clausen or Tim Tebow and not C.J. Spiller, Jahvid Best or Evan Royster. Personally, it seems if the NFL is trying to be all about "parity" then the league would retain some focus on rushing side of the offense as well.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

When LOST invades your dreams

So, maybe I have been watching a little too much LOST. Maybe I shouldn't fall asleep while watching television. Maybe I have an overactive imagination...but I know I'm not the only one.

So I was sleeping...GOOD and I drifted off into dreamland. I dreamed I was on a plane(no, I don't know the name or flight #) and we were flying over the Sahara(I don't know why). I decided to get up and walk to the bathroom, but suddenly, I had a premonition(or maybe it was a flash) so I headed back to my seat. The next thing I know, the plane ripped in half right behind me(luckily I wasn't in the tail end). Well...I said, "Enough is enough", and I quickly got back in my chair and buckled my seat belt(without any problems from the pesky depressurization).

So the plane crash lands in the desert, and of course, there are several people moaning and crying, but I'm walking around assessing the damage and helping a few survivors pitch tents. Yes, after 5 minutes of crashing, people were already making shelters(it could happen). I thought about it for a minute and again I said, "Enough is enough", and I walked for about a half mile to a set of apartment buildings(because of course there are residents in the Sahara). I knocked on one door and a old Chinese lady answered the door. I said hello to her daughter and then I asked her if I could use her phone because I was just involved in a plane crash.

I really wish I could have finished this dream, but I woke up while I was making the call. All I know is that I couldn't have made this up if I wanted to.

DAMN you LOST! Stay out of my dreams!

Monday, March 8, 2010

An unpaid shout out to my PS3

To Sony, the makers of my PS3...WOW! You guys have outdone yourselves with this one. Even though I had to give up my favorite kidney and I had to pawn my pet dog, buying your system was well worth it. My family and I could have gotten an XBOX 360, but the 360 only had one controller, no wires, and no games, but the PS3 we got came with 2(yes, 2) controllers, all the wires, and Uncharted 2. I thought the funny white guy on your commercials was joking, but Uncharted 2 really does look like a movie! My son played it for about 8 hours and I just sat back with a bag of popcorn and watched him play and I didn't even feel the "I wanna play" twinge that any gamer normally feels.

The faces on Grand Theft Auto IV kinda suck, but I do like the control I have in the game though. And I know I'm a little behind on my Madden, but even the intro to Madden '08 will turn any mere mortal into a football fan and any football fan into a crazed Madden loving lunatic. I decided to go into franchise mode and even the fantasy draft gave me chills. One half of my brain is screaming, "WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE!", while the other half is working hard not to mess up my game by picking a bad draft pick(I's just a game!). Even though my team is in Dallas, I decided to pick the lowly '08 Lions for my franchise. Don't sweat because I drafted players like Michael "Me hit you long time" Strahan, Darren "Mr. Interception" Sharper, Philip Rivers, Kurt "Six Million Dollar Man" Warner, Frank Gore, Maurice Jones-Drew, Brandon Jacobs, Vincent Jackson, and Jeff Saturday just to name a few. Oh yeah...this Lions team is winning the Super Bowl!

To put it quite must buy this PS3 and when you do, write Sony and tell them you bought it because of me so I can get my royalty. LMAO

Saturday, March 6, 2010

If I was GM

If I was the GM of the...

St. Louis Rams - First, I would pray. Soon after, I'd fix three STRONG drinks. While I'm buzzed, I'd realize that I need to shake up my team. The first shake up I'd do is to trade down with Washington so I would give them my 1st pick for their 4th pick and Jason Campbell. Forget what you've heard, because even with getting 43 sacks last season, Campbell still had 64.5% completion with a 86.4 passer rating. WE CAN BUILD ON THIS! To protect him, I'd take OG Chester Pitts from Houston for a 2011 4th or 3rd round pick which is like trading a bucket of water for a bar of gold. I'd also grab WR Kevin Walter from free agency while the Texans are busy playing in the sand deciding if they want him or not. This way, Pitts would have a familiar face, my QB would have another sharp target besides Donnie Avery, and Walter would be more than happy to thrive in a starting role while sharing his knowledge with Danny Amendola. This would also take a little pressure off RB Steven Jackson which would make him just a little more hungry to shine when he gets his chance. With my 4th pick, I'd draft either OT Russell Okung or OT Anthony Davis.

Detroit Lions - Seeing as how I've already picked up WR Nate Burleson, DT Corey Williams, DE Kyle Vanden Bosch, re-signed LG Jon Jansen, and with the rumored signing of RB Thomas Jones in the air, I'd sign either K Jay Feely or K Neil Rackers. Then I would blow everybody's mind by trading down my 2nd pick for Oakland's 8th pick and CB Nnamdi Asomugha. With my 8th pick, I'd draft either S Taylor Mays or S Eric Berry. After the draft, I'd buy a small humidor full of Diamond Crown cigars and spread the word of a playoff spot coming within 3 years.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers - The first thing I would do is to re-sign MLB Barrett Ruud and then pick up either WR Mark Clayton or WR Lance Moore from the draft. If I couldn't trade WR Antonio Bryant for a 1st or 2nd round pick, I'd release him. My next move would be to draft either DT Ndamukong Suh or DT Gerald McCoy. None of these moves are too flashy, but they're a start to a rebuilding process.

Washington Redskins - First, I would pull a Bud Adams on anyone who says I should trade Jason Campbell. Then I would grab LG Logan Mankins from New England and RT Tony Pashos from San Francisco. Next, I'd grab WR Brandon Marshall because if anybody's going to handle Brandon, my man Mike will be able to. After I sign K Jay Feely or K Neil Rackers, I'd really want to shake up the system. So, I would trade DT Albert Haynesworth to the Lions for their 2nd pick. Then I would trade down my 4th pick to the Broncos for pro-bowl LB Elvis Dumervil and their 11th pick. Next, I would trade down my 11th pick to the Texans for pro-bowl TE Owen Daniels and their 20th pick. While everyone's in shock calling the Redskins the dominators of the 2010 free agency, I would slice off RB Clinton Portis like a hangnail and then draft DT Ndamukong Suh with my 2nd pick. While everybody is screaming "Washington!" in one breath and "Super Bowl" in the next breath, I'd draft either RB C.J. Spiller or RB Jahvid Best with my 20th pick. Of course...since I'm a die-hard Cowboys fan...this would NEVER happen!

Kansas City Chiefs - Since I want to keep my QB protected and give him some good options while keeping my RB healthy and hungry, I'd re-sign WR Chris Chambers and trade WR Bobby Wade and TE Leonard Pope to New Orleans for WR Lance Moore and their 2nd round pick. Then I'd sign free agent C Kevin Mawae to give my offensive line some leadership, and free agent FS Darren Sharper to give my secondary some leadership and credibility. After this, I'd want to build(a lot!) so I'd trade my 5th pick and WR Chris Chambers to Seattle for their 6th and 14th pick of the first round. Next, I'd trade my 14th pick to the Jets for their 29th pick and TE Dustin Keller. With my 6th pick, I'd draft either OT Russell Okung, OT Bruce Campbell, or OT Brian Bulaga. With my 29th pick, I'd draft either DT Jared Odrick or DT Lamarr Houston.

Monday, March 1, 2010

What I've learned from LOST

I'll admit that I've only watched the first season of LOST and the first show of the second season, yet even in that short time, I've learned a few things. The first two things I've learned is that 1) Sometimes, I think waaay too much, and 2) Sometimes, I watch too much television. In spite of these two "revelations", I find it interesting that I or any other t.v. viewer can take a fictional show and actually relate parts of it to REAL life...and use this relation to make ourselves better.

Before I sound crazy and you stop reading, think about the fact that everybody on this show is running from something. Of course, it's obvious that Kate is not only running from the law, but she's also running from the memory of her best friend that she inadvertently got killed, and the man she herself killed. There's Sawyer who's running from the man he killed while trying to forget the memory of an abusive father who killed his mother and then committed suicide, and while Sawyer is running from this, he also has to pay accountability for his grifter past. Hurley is trying to escape a self-inflicted "curse" that he feels he suffered because of a group of numbers. Sayid is running from a past life of a Iranian soldier while ducking American eyes of being profiled as a terrorist and running to rekindle a past connection.

Locke is trying to run from a mundane and handicapped life where he heard, "You can't do that" a lot. This life seems to have been forced on him because he trusted someone who claimed to be family yet betrayed him. Because of this, he seems intent on manipulating people to avoid being let down by anyone else. Jin is trying to run away with his wife, Sun because her father is apparently the Chinese version of William Fisk a.k.a. Kingpin(google the name if you haven't heard of him) and he doesn't want to lose the little goodness he has left in him after doing all the evil that Sun's father has commanded Jin to do. On top of this, Sun is trying to run away from her husband because she feels that the man she once loved is a stranger no longer to be trusted. Then there is Micheal, a man who lost the woman he loved because she wanted more out of life than she thought she could get with him, and Walter, the son he never got a chance to know. Now with Walter being a teenager, Micheal is running from having anything to do with a son he once loved as a baby, but now knows nothing about since the two of them have been living in separate countries and are worlds apart.

There's Claire, the pregnant mother who not only had a runaway deadbeat dad, but now questions her chances of survival as a first time single mom. Charlie is a washed up musician who is running away from a heroin addiction that has cost him several meaningful relationships, a music career, and a job, but he manages to find this same heroin demon on a deserted island(of all places). Then there's Jack...a doctor who is one of the central characters who is running from being known as the hero and ducking the responsibility of being the go-to guy that everyone calls on whenever there is trouble. He's also running from the pain of blaming himself for his alcoholic dad's mistakes.

There you have it...the cast of LOST and one central theme...running. We all have demons and other mistakes that we are trying to live down one way or another. We can always run from our demons, but the truth is that those demons are always one or two steps behind us and we can never run for the rest of our lives even though some try to. We always end up facing one realization...those things we are running from eventually catch up to us. The best thing any of us can do is to stand and fight our demons because even if we lose, we still have the knowledge that we fought our mistakes with our dignity intact. We also know that our best chance to live free of our problems is to stand and fight them until we are finally victorious, and winning only happens when we stop running.

This ends tonight's life lesson and in closing...if LOST turns out to be somebody's "dream" or if the show fades to black à la The Sopranos, I'm going to find J.J. Abrams and shake the mess out of him.