Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The FGR Thanksgiving Day Picks

Welcome to what may become the first annual Thanksgiving themed edition of the FGR NFL picks (now if I can just remember to do it again next year). Here are just a few things for which I am thankful: (1) I am thankful that I am traveling no further than the bar in my brother in-law's basement across the street on this post-apocolyptic Wednesday afternoon; (2) I am thankful that we are not hosting Thanksgiving dinner which means that I will not be in my kitchen tomorrow night wearing an itchy sweater with a low-grade wine buzz trying to futilly scrub turkey grease out of a pan; and (3) I am thankful that your are reading the Fantasy Golf Report right now because if you keep reading it, I'll keep writing it. Deal? Good. Now let's get on to some Thanksgiving themed picks.  

At Detroit by 5.5 over Green Bay: The Pick - Lions

I am thankful for Jim Schwartz and the Ford family's track record of retaining underperforming employees when anyone else would have fired them long ago (see: Matt Millen). That means that we can expect the headset smashing hothead to entertain us for at least another three years which should just about waste Calvin Johnson's prime so, while he will continue to rack-up other worldly stats, he will never quite make it into the greatest receiver of all-time discussion with Jerry Rice and, um, Jerry Rice because the playoff runs won't happen.*

"God I hate the two minute drill."
On the Packers' side, I am thankful that I didn't draft Aaron Rodgers on any of my fantasy teams though it wasn't for lack of trying. Someday Rodgers is going to learn that there is no regular season first down worth running for (note: this does not apply to about 75% of the quarterbacks in the league who might as well run for as badly as they throw). Until then, the Packers need to figure-out a way to keep him in the pocket. Maybe they could put him in the shotgun and put a ball and chain around his ankle and then have the center carry the ball between plays. It would be like incorporating a bit of the World's Strongest Man Competition into the game and that would be nothing but a positive.

At Dallas by 9.5 over Oakland: The Pick - Cowboys

I am thankful that the Browns moved to Baltimore in 1996 and saved me from continuing to root for the favorite team of my youth. Yes, I was a Cowboys fan but if you grew-up surrounded by Redskins fans, you'd understand that I had no choice. Add Staubach v. Theisman to the mix, and it became a no-brainer. Theisman was a preening schmo and Staubach was revered as the guy who served his country first before joining the Cowboys.** Oh who am I kidding? I liked the Cowboys because everyone around me hated them and I've been a wise-ass since I was five years old. At least that made it easier to abandon them when they started going down the tubes in the late 90's.

I'm not sure what to be thankful about with the Raiders. They got blown-out in the Super Bowl about ten years ago and they haven't finished over .500 since. Their quarterbacks over that period have included washed-up guys like Kerry Collins and Daunte Culpepper, stopgap guys like Andrew Walter and Jason Campbell and a guy who is heavily involved in the biggest draft bust of all-time conversation in JaMarcus Russell. Their first round pick this year, D.J. Hayden, almost died on the field a year ago and they didn't see that as a potential concern because, like a charlie horse, almost internally bleeding to death is the kind of thing you just shake-off before the next play. Their last first round pick before that was in 2010 when they took Rolando McClain who is now out of the league. Oh yeah, they've had seven head coaches since 2002 including Lane Kiffin who has the people skills of Nick Saban but compliments them with being a terrible football coach. I guess I should just be thankful that I'm not a Raiders fan.

At Baltimore by 3 over Pittsburgh: The Pick - Ravens

I am thankful that I sold my tickets for Thursday night's game and since I seem to be coming clean on some things today (and I haven't even started drinking yet), I might as well add the fact that I don't really like going to the games anymore. I'm not going to get into the overpriced beers ($10), the long bathroom lines (20 minutes), the outrageous ticket prices ($120), the parking hassles or the traffic. For me it comes down to two things: (1) I don't want to watch anything for three straight hours anymore unless it's the best goddamned movie ever made . . . I mean we better be talking Goodfellas meets the Godfather with more quotable lines than Wall Street and better sex scenes than Body Heat and Bound (sorry, you'll have to find those on your own, the FGR isn't that kind of site . . . yet); and (2) the colossal douche bags who sit at the end of my row who act like you're making them give birth every time you try to get out to go get an overpriced beer or to spend twenty minutes in line for the bathroom.

Bravo Jennifer and Gina . . . Bravo!!!
I am thankful that the Steelers exist because everyone needs a few things in this world that they can unconditionally and unequivocally despise. For me, it's the Steelers, people who don't use their turn signals, people who throw trash and cigarettes out of their car windows, people who wait until the lane ends to merge (I have some road rage issues) and, most of all, the douche bags who sit at the end of my row for Ravens games.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Last Week's Record: 8-6 . . . Season Record: 97-75-3

Endnotes

* In what appears to be a debate in its infancy, there are rumblings that Megatron may one day challenge Rice as the greatest receiver of all time. Before we get there, let's just remember that in four Super Bowls, Rice AVERAGED 8 catches for 147 yards and 2 touchdowns. Meanwhile, Calvin Johnson has been in one playoff game* so let's just simmer down for now. In his defense, however, Johnson did catch 12 passes for 211 yards and 2 touchdowns in that one playoff game so he's got that going for him . . . which is nice.

** Two things: (1) I stole "preening schmo" from Tony Kornheiser which is how he used to aptly describe Brian Billick; and (2) Staubach played at the Naval Academy and then fulfilled his four year military obligation before turning pro. As someone who grew-up in Annapolis, this served as a constant reminder of why I never want to attend the Naval Academy. Four year commitment after college? Do you have any idea how much I thought I was going to accomplish in those four years? As it turns-out, I think those four years yielded about $70,000 in gross income, some credit card debt and the aspiration to one day manage my own Herman's Sporting Goods Store (since gone bankrupt). I don't really have a joke here. Not sure I need one.