Thursday, November 13, 2014

The FGR Week 11 Thursday Night Pick

From a competitive standpoint, has there been a less relevant division in sports over the last ten years than the NFL's AFC East? Since 2002, the only team to win it not named the New England Patriots was the 2008 Miami Dolphins. That team was led by renowned knuckleball pitcher Chad Pennington and was ultimately manhandled and found wanting by the Ravens in the first round of the playoffs.* That was also the asterisk year that Tom Brady threw only eleven passes before Bernard Pollard ended his season and spawned the "Tom Brady Rule" which makes it illegal to hit Tom Brady in the knee (of course you can hit just about anyone else in the knee just as long as their name doesn't happen to be "Tom Brady").

I know I know, the Jets supposedly made it to the 2009 and 2010 AFC Conference Championship games but, in hindsight, are we sure that really happened? As I sit here in 2014, are you honestly trying to tell me that a team assembled by Mike Tannenbaum, coached by Rex Ryan and quarterbacked by Mark Sanchez won playoff road games against the Bengals, Chargers, Colts and Patriots and came within five points of beating the Steelers to go to the Super Bowl? I'll take your word for it on the Bengals and the Chargers because there is no one you would want see on the other sideline in a playoff game more than Norv Turner or anyone wearing a Bengals' hat but Manning's Colts and Brady's Patriots? I'm going to need more evidence because it strains credulity to say the least.

Miami by 4.5 over Buffalo: The Pick - Dolphins

. . . and warm weather cheerleaders.
And that brings us to tonight's ultimately meaningless match-up between two non-Patriot AFC East teams. Fittingly, the Dolphins are coming-off a loss in which they blew a lead to the Lions and the Bills are coming-off a loss where they blew a lead to the Chiefs. Both teams are 5-4 which means a win tonight should launch the winner on its way to 9-7 and the loser to 7-9. One team is led by a journeyman quarterback who looks like Dave Grohl while the other is led by a promising young stud with a model caliber wife. As much as I like Nirvana and the Foo Fighters, I'm going with the model caliber wife.

Footnote

* That was the season when Ed Reed decided he was going to score a touchdown every time he touched the ball so, when Pennington launched this duck in the playoff game, we pretty much knew he was going to get flattened ten seconds later as Reed stepped over him on the way into the endzone.

 Last Week's Record: 7-6 . . . Season Record: 68-77-1

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