The Chiefs crushed the Broncos. The soggy Saints whupped the 49ers. Kurt Warner threw for 472 yards against the Jets and still lost by three touchdowns in a whopping 91point game. The Bears defeated the Eagles as surely as an actual bear would defeat an actual eagle. The Buccaneers pounded the Packers into the ground and left them battered and finished. But the sweetest upset of them all was the Redskins beating the Cowboys. Finally there is some justice in this league.
Why do all these good teams keep getting beaten by all these bad teams? What’s going on in this league? Has the National Football League reached a level of zen and balance wherein every team in the league will finish at 8 – 8? What an astounding and boring season that would be. I guess anything can happen. The Kansas City Chiefs made fools of the division leading Broncos one short week after getting ground up like hamburger by the unpredictable Atlanta Falcons. Judging by the standings it’ll be the Bills and the Giants squaring off in Tampa this coming February. It’ll be a classic rematch of the neck and neck battle of 1991 when Scott Norwood choked at the last minute and shanked a 23-yard field goal that costed them the title, costed me $400, and cursed the Buffalo Bills to lose 4 straight Super Bowls.
Take a moment to think about what that means. Imagine what it must have felt like to be a native Buffalo Bills fan in January of 1994. If you weren’t as high as the moon on four hits of pure grade LSD staring at fractals and getting your face melted by Beck and the Smashing Pumpkins you were probably bored and sad even though your team was going to the Super Bowl. The Bills were heavy favorites to win in 1991, but they were heavily projected losers the next 3 years. I made back all the money I lost in 1991, and then some, betting against the Bills in the next three Super Bowls but I took no solace in it. I took no pleasure betting on the Cowboys two years in a row. Both games were blowouts that were over by halftime. No one cared. In four short years the Buffalo Bills went from never having been to the Big Show to 0 – 4 tying the Denver Broncos for worst Super Bowl record in the NFL. I’ll bet there are still people in Buffalo that curse the name of Scotty Norwood. He may have even been gunned down in the street. There is no way to know.
If Scott Norwood is alive today he’s probably washing dishes in a back woods road house somewhere in Wyoming, far away from any angry and spiteful Buffalo Bills fans that may be left. He probably is following the Bills and having flashbacks to 1990 when Jim Kelly was putting the same kind of points up in every game that Trent Edwards is putting up right now. Indeed the Buffalo Bills look a lot like the Bills of yore. They haven’t scored less than 20 points in a game yet. The only close one was against the Raiders in week 3 when they squeezed out a 1 point victory on a questionable call.
But who’s pointing fingers? If there is any team in the league that deserves to lose a game on a questionable call it is the Oakland Raiders who have historically been the dirtiest, shadiest, and foulest team since their glory days in the 1970s when John Madden was pumping his linemen full of horse steroids and equipping them all with prison shanks. The only other team in the league that is a contender for that foul trophy is the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XL in the most visibly obvious sports fix since the no-name Buster Douglas knocked out the undefeated Mike Tyson and claimed the heavyweight boxing title. There was nothing that wasn’t fishy about Super Bowl XL. Right out of the gates you could tell the fix was in. Lucky for me Seattle were heavy favorites and I was watching the game in Washington state. As soon as they announced that the game’s referee was an ex-cop I took every bet I could get on the Steelers even giving as much as 10 points. I made a killing that day, but it was not an enjoyable victory that I could gloat about. It was a travesty and it soured me on all professional sports. I didn’t watch another game for two years.
But that is in the past. This foul decade is almost over and we should all be looking forward to the sunny days ahead. Most of the games look obvious next week, but I’ve been blindsided two weeks in a row by ridiculous upsets and goofy foul-ups. But even with the league in a weird twilight-zone alternate universe sort of state I have a confident feeling that things will unfold properly in week 5. The post-preseason is over. It will be October soon and it is time to get serious. Mark my words, Week 5 will unfold as predicably as a bum getting drunk.
Week 5 Picks
Tennessee @ Baltimore
Can Baltimore topple the undefeated and unstoppable Tennessee Titans? Perhaps, but don’t bet on it. Titans by 2
Kansas City @ Carolina
KC publicly humiliated Denver by 14 points, but it was a fluke and Carolina is a solid team with a coach that’s got his head screwed on straight. Panthers by 8
Chicago @ Detroit
I was a fool to think that any team that went undefeated in the preseason could ever win a game the rest of the year. Kitna and the Lions are a sorry bag of bones. Bears by 6
Atlanta @ Green Bay
The Packers are broken. Aaron Rogers is hurt and they’re psyched out and depressed. Atlanta is all over the place. They’ll put up 38 points in one week only to get shut down to 9 the next. My heart wants Green Bay to win, and they’re playing in Lambeau. I’m a fool and a sucker and a lifelong Packer fan. If Green Bay loses this one their season is over. Packers by 3
Indianapolis @ Houston
The Colts are as broken and run down as the city of Baghdad. This might just be Houston’s week. Ha! Just kidding. The Houston Texans losing is the only thing you can count on in the NFL right now. They are the worst franchise in NFL history. Colts by 3
San Diego @ Miami
The Dolphins had a bye last week after crushing the Patriots in Foxborough. If I were on the team I would have spent my week off celebrating on a speedboat in the keys while snorting pure cocaine off the tits of a supermodel. The Dolphins won’t win another game for a while. Chargers by 12
Seattle @ New York Giants
Seattle’s coming off a bye after their first win of the season. All their starters are back and they’ve got something to prove. A win against the defending Super Bowl Champions in New York would surely prove it. It’s too bad for the Seahawks that they are perpetual losers and chokers. Giants by 5
Washington @ Philadelphia
Another gnarly showdown in the best division of football. The Redskins proved they are a relevant force to be reckoned with last week while the Eagles were getting knocked on their asses by the Bears. Redskins by 2
Tampa Bay @ Denver
The Buccaneers are hot hot hot. They broke the Packers like a rancher breaking a horse yesterday leaving them injured and moaning on the field. Half of their squad was carried away in stretchers while the other half limped to the locker room bruised and defeated. Denver is all flash and no substance. They are a flimsy football team. Buccaneers by 5
Buffalo @ Arizona
Buffalo is putting up the points every single week. Arizona started strong, but as the season carries on they look like they always do. Bad. They will lose like their bat shit crazy Senator will lose the Presidential election this year. Bills by 9
Cincinnati @ Dallas
How did the Cowboys land this one? This game is a freebee for Dallas. If I were Wade Phillips I would rest my starters and let my backup squad trounce the biggest losers in the league. Cowboys by 14
New England @ San Francisco
I haven’t changed my mind about this one since I went on a tireless fervered rant on the New England Patriots last week. Bill Belichick and his team of robots will be finely tuned and prepared for this game. Their pathetic loss to Miami has surely infuriated him and he will squash the 49ers like a barefoot Frenchman squashes grapes. Patriots by 7
Pittsburgh @ Jacksonville
Pittsburgh is solid. Jacksonville had a good game, but they ain’t all that. Steelers by 4
Minnesota @ New Orleans
Another stupid Monday Night game that no one will care about. Or will they? Actually this one could be good. I keep doggin on New Orleans, but they pulled it out yesterday. I keep on talking up the Vikings, but they just keep on losing. Still, I think it is Minnesota’s night. If they don’t win this one they fail completely and they suck. Vikings by 1
Money, money, money. Skeet skeet muthafuckas, who wants to bet with me?