We Shall All Be Haunted By The Ghost Of Ed Hochuli [TeeCoZee’s NFL Roundup 2010 Week 5]

Introductions are for assholes that need to prepare people for what they are going to read. This week, I will not be one of those assholes. However, I just did introduce my anti-introduction, so allow me to continue. This week, people played football. This is me talking about it.

Jacksonville Jaguars 36, Buffalo Bills 26

Even the fans that showed up were still embarrased to be there...

The Buffalo Bills want to win a game. I swear, they really think that they wouldn’t mind winning a game or two this season. Their fans tend to think otherwise. This was, after all, their first blackout game since 2006. They may be a team with heart, but the heart only beats for a couple of quarters every week. The dissident fans had many reasons to be excited throughout the first half of the game. Ryan Fitzpatrick looked like an NFL QB, or an above par amateur. Lee Evans proved that he isn’t a geezer by catching one for a 43 yard TD. Hell, even Freddy Fred Jackson was able to turn some heads with his potential beastliness [a beastliness of which I have mentioned numerous times in the past, but never saw any real results from]. Of course, it all fell apart in the second half. David Garrard was having an on-day, and the Jags running game was on fire. It’s not like the Bills were planning on winning anyway. Maybe next time…maybe next time…

Baltimore Mavens 31, Kyle Orton 17

He looks pretty damn calm for someone who's about to get sacked...

Them damn misfits in Baltimore prove to us once again that running the ball is much more important than passing it. In most cases, this is completely untrue. But we’re talking about the Ravens: one of the most fucked up teams in the NFL. Joe Flacco, a chronic douchebag, ended up handing the ball off to Ray Rice more times than he threw it. This method worked, and the “used to be awesome but now is looking somewhat putrid” Bronco defense allowed over 200 rushing yards. The Ravens’ fun vacuum defense was all clogged up, allowing Brandon Lloyd to have all sorts of fun in the back field [135 yards of fun, and 2 touchdown parties]. Should’ve gotten a DirtDevil.

Robosquad 19, Some 3-1 Team Leading The AFC West 9

I ate a crab cake the other day. It did not taste like crab at all. Although the dude at the deli gave me a 2-for-1 deal on them, I couldn’t help but feel ripped off. They were very mushy, and it tasted as if they were frozen and microwaved. Judging from the reputation and caliber of the establishment, I could not believe my taste buds. They might…actually be ripping people off! I guess sometimes, when you shop like a chef, you can still get treated like a dishwasher.

Washington Redskins 16, Green Bay Packers 13 [OT]

Once again, I must inquire why in the hell everybody still respects the Packers as a playoff-bound team. It could be entirely possible that the Redskins may be the sleeper team of the year, but I’m not buying that for a dollar. It could be also possible that the Bears are a lot better than their performances lead on, but I still wouldn’t hold my breath. Aaron Rogers is not the showstopper he is trying to be. The running back position has been a revolving door, albeit a fun one to watch. Their receiving corps are a bunch of up-and-comers, but they are still too young. [With exception to Donald Driver, who has not been putting up the most impressive stats this season] Much like the Dallas Cowboys, the Packers are one of those teams who may or may not be considered a high-profile team by the end of the season. On the other side of the ball, I suppose that the Redskins did play somewhat decently. Donovan McNabbles decided to make up for his putrid game last week. 357 yards isn’t terrible. In fact, it’s fantastic. Safety LaRon Landry proved to be a new force to be reckoned with, picking up an interception and a forced fumble. All in all, the Redskins aren’t looking that bad. However, it’s still going to take a few more wins for me to get truly excited about their “new burst of life”. After all, they are the Redskins…

Detroit Lions 44, Los Angeles Rams 6

For the Lion’s first win of the season, let’s turn it over to my partner in grime, Ol’ Uncle Nasty in “The Lions Den W/ Ol’ Uncle Nasty”:

The Ghost of Ed Hochuli still haunts the Rams...

Coming into this season, there were a couple of ideas that came to mind when looking at this game on the schedule. For one, I figured it would be one of the match-ups Detroit would be favored in, and two, it would be a battle between two young quarterbacks that were drafted at the very top.

Unfortunately Matthew Stafford did NOT play. Fortunately It did NOT matter.

The Detroit Lions did to the St. Louis Rams on Sunday what so many teams have seemed to have done to the Lions in the past few years: they made them look foolish. They put 44 points on a defense that has held all its opponents under 20 this season. The Rams were not allowed to get into the end zone. The Rams tried to kick an onside kick to start the game, clearly they thought they were playing the same old Lions…they weren’t. [Ed note: The onside kick actually happened simultaneously with the opening kickoff of another game]

I could go on and on with all the positives that could be pulled from this game. The Lions scored three touchdowns on offense. They scored on an interception return (Alphonso “the fonz” Smith now as three interceptions this season). Stefan Logan ran back a 105 yard kick return for a TD, tying the franchise record. They scored so much that they now LEAD the NFC in points…Yes, I’m talking about the Detroit Lions.

Bottom line.

The Lions won a game they should have won. They have more talent on the field then the Rams and it showed in Sundays beat down. It’s time to give the Lions a little bit of love. They have played three of five games on the road. Two of those games have been against pre-season super bowl picks (Packers, Vikings), and they other one came against a Chicago Bears team that is somehow 4-1. Next week they face a Jekyll and Hyde New York Giants team led by one of my least favorite quarterbacks. If they can win on the road and go into the bye week at 2-4, I believe the Lions can make some noise in the second half of the season.

So until next week…be careful when opening a txt message from Brett Favre…it may be proof Viagra works…

Matt Forte featuring The Chicago Bear’s Defense 23, Carolina Panthers 6

Useless...fucking useless...

And so it all comes true. Todd Collins starts his first game in 2 years, and wins. With him, Charlie Batch and others, this is truly the year of the backup QB. Now, lets get back to reality. Todd Collins was entirely useless. Painfully useless. So useless, he threw an interception on the goal line and then benched. He was replaced by Caleb Hanie, who was also worthless. It just happened to be true that Carolina QB Jimmy Clausen was even more worthless. He was benched after going 9/22. He was replaced by Matt Moore, who is also worthless. He threw 5/10. In amidst of all this worthlessness, Julius Peppers deflected a worthless pass. The Carolina OL was so worthless that they let the ball fly in the air, and into the hands of Julius Peppers, who is not worthless. Matt Forte is generally worthless, especially to fantasy teams. I drafted him in the first round last year, and he proved that he had no worth. Matt Forte went to immense use today. So much use that he scored 2 TDs in the first 7 minutes. However, these were his first 2 TDs of the season. Considering that they are 4-1, that’s pretty worthless. In fact, they may be the most worthless 4-1 team in the NFL, or even NFL history.  There is only one thing that they can do right: They know how to tell when a team is acting more worthless than themselves, and exploit it. 

Tampa Bay “How In The Hell Are They Winning?” Bucs 24, The Ones That Make Me Cry Chili 21

Mr Palmer, you do not desrve to be wearing that helmet in the first place...please go fuck yourself immediately.

I have previously accused Carson Palmer for being the weakest link in the Cincinnati offense. This game proved my point. He failed to deliver so many times that I am extremely surprised that he wasn’t benched. I realize that some may see him as one of those “unbenchable” QBs. But if this season has proved anything, maybe benching him would be a good thing. He threw 3 interceptions. One led to a pick-6. One happened with a shade over 2:00 left in the game and a 21-14 lead. Why exactly they were throwing down the field was beyond me. Then, after the Bucs rally and score a TD, Carson Palmer goes back to pass again. Now, if you’re just seconds away from OT, would you really want to risk it with throwing the ball down the field with a QB that is less than confident? Of course not. But they do it anyway. And it gets picked. And the Bucs get the game winning field goal. And the only respectable thing in Cincinatti is the Skyline Chili. [Even the Reds are a bunch of disappointing assholes]. At 2-3, I really don’t know what to think about, or expect of, the Bengals. At 3-1, Tampa Bay is fucking scary. Josh Freeman is slowly becoming a leader. They have a big game next week against the fledgling New Orleans Saints. For the first time in years, things are actually looking up for this bunch. They may earn my respect by the end of the season. I could respect them a lot easier if they would just revert to the creamsicle jerseys. But that may not happen…

Atlanta Falcons 20, Cleveland Browns 10

As everyone expected, this was business as usual for the Falcons. Michael Turner stepped into the limelight again with a buck forty, Roddy White caught 101, and the defense caused a turnover quadfecta. As everyone expected, this was also business as usual for the Browns. QB Seneca Wallace was a turd in heat, and then he hurt his ankle. Jake DelHomme was there to replace him, and the putrid offense didn’t miss a beat. It was apparent that DelHomme just didn’t want to be there. And who could blame him? He was once an A-listed QB that somehow lost his way, and then traveled from a “maybe” playoff contender to a team in ruins. It is very apparent that Jake DelHomme doesn’t even want to be alive. After throwing 3 picks, I’m confident that everyone in Cleveland feels the same way.

The 2008 New York Giants 34, The 2008 Houston Texans 10

It appears that the sleeping Giants have finally woke up. After having a lackluster start, they are finally having a voice heard in the NFC. They are finally dominant on both sides of the ball, and fully confident in a division that is full of question marks [a 3-way tie?]. Hakeem Nicks had a marvelous game, picking up almost half of Eli Manning’s 297 yards, and 2/3 TDs. Their defense held Arian Foster down to a meager 25 yards. Being that both of these teams are on the proverbial rise, it comes to a huge surprise that the score wasn’t any closer. With both of these teams now sitting at 3-2, I am very excited to see what develops for the both of them.

The Team That Supposedly Doesn’t Need Kurt Warner 30, New Orleans ‘Aints 20

Your head's gonna have to hang much lower than that...

I am hard pressed to figure out whether the Cardinals won the game or if the Saints lost the game. Arizona’s rookie QB Max Hall was not exactly impressive. On the other hand, Drew Brees threw 3 picks. In fact, across the board, neither of these teams flourished in any sense of the word. It would be easy to commend the Cards for surviving without Kurt Warner, but in reality, Kurt Warner was actually at the game. As a fucking commentator. It seems a little fishy to me, as if Kurt is calling plays for them from the broadcast booth. It could all be one big conspiracy. They could easily throw Kurt Warner in the game under the guise of Derek Anderson, because really, does Derek Anderson even have a publicly recognizable face? Maybe he has a jinx on all of their opponents. Or maybe we should all just face the facts and accept that the Saints are not a great team. They all played with a certain aura of slothness. It was as if they were waiting to win the game, expected to win the game, and when the game was over and lost, they could do nothing but merely shrug. Nothing affects them anymore. Nothing excites them. They have seen the top of the mountain, and they were all presumably bored by it. This was their 8th consecutive regular season game below 25 points. This is not the team that we grew to love over the last couple of years. They are fallible, and they need to search deep and hard to find the pieces to pick up. If they don’t, then the NFC South is up for grabs, and god knows that the Bucs don’t make good division champions. 

Tennessee Titans 34, Dallas Cowboys 27

The Cowboys share the same story with the Saints. The only difference is that Dallas would wait until December to get lazy. This time around, they didn’t waste any time to get there. Since the off-season, there has been nothing but talk about this team. With the Super Bowl being hosted in Dallas this year, nobody would shut up about a home team being in the big game. They start out the season 1-2, and then during their bye week, there was still talks about them being the best in the NFC East. Hopefully this loss shut everyone up. The Dallas Cowboys are doomed, and they are an aging team that is not going to make anything big happen in this generation. They have hit the wall, joining many other teams of the same caliber [The Chargers, Vikings, Broncos, Ravens, ect]. They will be lucky to finish the season above .500, and in a couple of years, lucky to sell out the over-sized empire of a stadium that they built for themselves. As for the Titans, well, they looked somewhat alright. Vince Young? Shitty but sufficient as usual. Chris Johnson? Not stopped. Their future? Still iffy…

Straight Outta Oakland 35, San Diego Chokers 27

If you squint hard enough, you can see the ghost of Ed Hochuli...

There are a billion things that I can say about this game. It was fun the whole way through? Yes. The Chargers deserved to lose? Yes. It broke my heart? Yes. Let me make the following 3 statements:

1) Last Tuesday, I was sitting on my hammock. I thought to myself, “I was really rough on the Raiders this week. I just kind of dismissed them as some mediocre team that’s going nowhere slow.” I concluded that the next time they win, I will admit that I underestimated them. And here is my admission: I underestimated the Raiders. They may not have the most talent in the NFL, but they played with infinite heart, and their special teams is something to avoid being fucked with. They played a good game, and deserved the important win against their division rival. [The first one since 2003] But their revolving door of a QB squadron is fucking laughable.

2) The way that this game started mapped out a sure-fire Charger loss by the end of the first quarter. Typically, all of the games that San Diego wins is won early. Phillip Rivers will start off hot, and light up the scoreboard until it gets to the point that victory is guaranteed. All of their losses are lost at the beginning. In this case, they went 3-and-out on their first two possessions. Their first punt was blocked into the back of the endzone for a safety. Their second punt was blocked and recovered for a Raider TD. Their next 2 possessions were red zone rallies. The inherent problem is that they were already behind, thus mistakes were bound to be made. On the third drive, Fullback Tolbert fumbles at the goal line. On the fourth drive, Phillip Rivers fumbles at the 14. This guaranteed a San Diego loss. Phillip Rivers does not do comebacks. He will try to do comebacks, as he did in this game. He spent the third quarter being wholly effective, and they threw some good points on the board, but at the end of the game, Phillip knew how to do nothing but choke. And choke he did.

The "incomplete pass" that made Ed Hochuli the most hated man in the NFL.

3) This game was the revenge of Ed Hochuli’s ghost. On September 14, 2008, Ed was officiating a game between the Broncos and the Chargers. Down by 7 points, at the goal line with 1:17 left, Denver QB Jay Cutler went back to pass, but fumbled before he was able to launch his wrist forward. This was a fumble that SD recovered, but in Ed Hochuli’s eyes, it was an incomplete pass and he blew the whistle before the fumble was recovered. This could not be reviewed because the whistle was blown, so the recovery “occurred after the play was dead, thus un-reviewable”. It was a terrible moment in my life, as Jay Cutler proceeded to throw a TD and 2-point conversion to seal the game. Fast forward to this current game. With 1:10 left, down by 1 and in the red zone, Phillip Rivers mimics Jay Cutler’s infamous fumble. This time, the official was wiser and did not blow any whistles. It was recovered by Oakland and ran in across the field for a TD. The TD was made possible because of the fact that EVERYONE on the field thought it was an incomplete pass. It was not. His arm was going forward, but the ball left his hand before his wrist snapped. This ending was sweet revenge for the retired ghost of Ed Hochuli.

 

Philadelphia Eagles 27, San Francisco 49ers 24

Okay, so maybe Kevin Kolb isn’t as completely fucking worthless as everyone thought he was. But he’s still no Michael Vick. Alex Smith, on the QB, is actually completely fucking worthless. It wasn’t until Mike Singletary threatened to pull him out of the game that he decided to start putting points on the board. But it was too little too late, and the 49ers are perpetually fucked. End. Of. Story.

New York Jets 29, Minnesota Vikings 20

Pricelessly yukking it up...

This game had an awful lot of hype surrounding it. For starters it marked the return of Darelle Revis, who has been donned as one of the best defensive players in the NFL. Stack that on a fledging Vikings team coming off the bye week with a lot to prove. On top of that, the Vikings acquire Randy Moss, the legendary receiver that started his career in Minnesota. To put even more cherries on top, the NFL also publicly announced that they are investigating an incident involving Brett Favre from 2008, when he played for the Jets. Apparently he was sexting with a [female] Jets reporter, and sent numerous pictures of what hides underneath the Wrangler jeans. When the game was about to start, I was on the edge of my seat. The sheer intensity of the matchup caused a catastrophic storm to hit New Jersey, and the kickoff was postponed 45 minutes. When the game actually started, I was in the back of my seat, sinking further. All of the hype surrounding the game did not matter: Darelle Revis was not covering Randy Moss, Favre played like a wet bucket of goop, and basically both teams struggled to get anything done offensively. Antonio Cromartie [another product of San Diego] did an amazing job with defending Randy Moss. He was held down to a mere 4 receptions out of countless attempts. The Jets are looking like a very well-rounded team [with some offensive “kinks” to work out] but Minnesota is looking like a squad with a lot of soul-searching to do.

With this week coming to a close, there are no more undefeated teams. There are still defeated teams, but no undefeated teams. And there are also some teams that need to get defeated more [Bucs, Ravens, Steelers, Seahawks, Bears, Browns] and some that need more wins to accurately portray their talent [Vikings, Chargers, Bengals, Cowboys, Eagles, Colts]. It should be noted that at the moment, The AFC South is in a complete deadlock at 3-2 for every team. It should also be noted that there are no majorly dominant teams that I can muster the energy to fully support. Next week brings more games, and more words will spew out of my mouth. Until that comes, enjoy the fall weather and watch out for the ghost of Ed Hochuli.

-TCZ

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