- Geek & Sci-Fi
The Detroit Lions defensive line of Ndamukong Suh, Nick Fairley and Kyle Vanden Bosch haven't played a single down together, but head coach Jim Schwartz's month-long mission to give them a cool nickname is finally over.
A few weeks ago, MZ and I went to Dallas for Nike Football's Media Summit 2010.
Week 13 saw a bevy of divisional games finally start to put some space between contenders and pretenders in this the weirdest of seasons. The Falcons came close to wrapping up the NFC South and possibly the entire conference with another comeback victory against Tampa. Dressed in vintage orange unis, the Bucs took a ten point lead before an Eric Weems kickoff return brought the Dirty Birds within three points. Matty Ice sealed the deal with a late touchdown, on the road this time. The NFC Central could come down to the last week’s Packers-Bears showdown as neither team shows any sign of slowing down. The Pack bounced back with an expected shellacking of the 49ers, highlighted by the catch and run efforts of Donald Driver. The Bears were at the receiving end of a similar, more embarrassing effort courtesy of Calvin Johnson who tore through Bears defensive backs with stiff arms straight out forged on Cybertron. While Megatron’s moves gave Detroit another halftime lead, the Bears defense was sufficiently motivated to shut down the Lions for the rest of the day. A late Jay Cutler TD combined with some help from an extremely questionable roughing call on Ndamukong Suh gave the Bears the victory.
Halfway through the season and we’re right where we started. Okay, maybe the Cowboys, Bills and a few other teams have sucked their way out of contention but well over 20 teams still have a chance at playoff contention. The top of the heap has no separation — there’s no ’07 Patriots or ’09 Colts and Saints running towards destiny. Instead, a bunch of flawed contenders trade big wins with shocking losses. The Philadelphia Eagles exemplify this schizophrenic season, although some of this has to be pinned on their quarterback exchange. With Michael Vick back behind center this week and DeSean Jackson back running all over the field, the Eagles took out Peyton and the Colts. The game wasn’t without controversy as Peyton floated one over the middle for Austin Collie in the second half, leading to this devastating hit and fumble: Of course in an effort to go along with Roger Goodell and the No Fun League’s paternalistic crackdown on defensive hits, Philly was assessed a 15 yard penalty. Yes, this hit was brutal and Collie probably lost a year off his life because of it, but the rules are the rules. You can’t throw flags and fine people hard earned cash just because the result looks ugly. Elsewhere in the NFC, the Giants and Saints took big steps back towards the Super Bowl with road blowout wins. Eli Manning and Hakeem Nicks ended Seattle’s hopes to be taken seriously by putting up 40 points on the West Coast. The Saints meanwhile had an even easier time of it against the hapless Panthers, as the Saints D held the Panthers to under 100 yards passing. Of course, New Orleans still has to navigate the NFC South, where they find themselves a game and a half behind the Falcons. Atlanta beat a frisky Tampa team in the Georgia dome thanks to a 100 yard game from a rejuvenated Michael Turner. After proclamations of greatness, I guess coach Raheem Morris will have to settle with the Bucs being the third best team in the division.
There's nothing better than the start of a new NFL season.
The Lions and Browns are generally awful, but every now and again they manage to awkwardly fumble around until they have an exciting game against each other.
Detroit Lions rookie Ndamukong "Badonkadonk" Suh met up with noted recording artist Jay-Z recently.
Week 17 is the playoffs before the playoffs for some teams and a minor nuisance before a six month vacation for most.