‘Ted Lasso’ Power Rankings: Look, Sometimes Progress Involves Tying A String To Your Privates

The Ted Lasso Power Rankings are a weekly analysis of who and/or what had the strongest performance in each episode. Most of the list will feature individual characters, although the committee does reserve the right to honor anything from animals to inanimate objects to laws of nature to general concepts. There are very few rules here.

Season 3, Episode 7 — “The Strings That Bind Us”

HONORABLE MENTION: Rebecca (not much to do this week but made the best of it with that face when Sam’s dad said he’s heard all about her); Jack (love bomber); Jade (picture her telling her friends about Nate); Barbara the CEO (give me a montage of Barbara riding the train in her pajamas and set it to “9 to 5” by Dolly Parton); coffee (it’s weird that coffee is just, like, a socially acceptable stimulant); Ash (nice hat); Brinda Barot (hate her); Trent Crimm (I like that he wears cool t-shirts now and would like to know more about his collection); spoons (no one cares); puking (if a genie granted me three wishes I honestly think one would be “never throw up again”); Higgins (“HOT TEA”); Will Kitman (I bet pretending to be Coach Beard was the best day of his life)

10. Sam


Tough week for Sam, between getting in fights with politicians online and getting his restaurant trashed just as his dad was coming and blowing up a little bit about it all in the locker room. That’s a lot for anyone to deal with, even before you get to “your coaches made you tie a string around your dick at practice and run around with it attached to one of your teammate’s dicks.” I like to imagine his dad asking how the season is going and Sam trying to explain this to him.

But still, Sam makes it into the power rankings proper, thanks mostly to the team coming together and helping to repair the restaurant. That was nice. It’s good to have people who have your back. He does need to stop reading his replies on Twitter, though. That’s not a healthy habit. Log off, Sam.

9. Isaac


Two things are important here:

THING NUMBER ONE: I need to know what Isaac’s favorite I Think You Should Leave sketch is. I feel like maybe it’s the “Baby of the Year” one.

THING NUMBER TWO: It is fascinating to me that I Think You Should Leave exists in the Ted Lasso universe because Sam Richardson, who stars in the “Baby of the Year” sketch and a few others, was also in this show a while back as a kind of evil billionaire. Did Isaac spend a lot of time telling people that this African billionaire looks just like the dude from his favorite sketch show? Why did it not come up during the show at all? Did he just recently binge ITYSL after the billionaire left? You can’t introduce a conundrum like this early in an episode. I’m not equipped to handle it.

8. Ted


The thing about the Total Football business is that it is objectively a little insane to introduce a whole new strategy like this between games in about two practices, which all goes back to the thing about Ted’s competence as a coach. He still knows very little about soccer. He’s opening practices to the public where his players have their dongs tied together. He’s giving long speeches about facial hair at halftime of games they’re getting clobbered in. Like, he’s definitely a good dude and has a talent for building character and camaraderie, but…

I really do want to read Trent Crimm’s book about all of this, especially if the season ends with the team getting relegated again. And I want to see Trent on the book tour giving interviews about it all. I know I’ve mentioned the string thing a bunch already but please stop for a minute right now and picture what a hilarious scandal that would be if various shouty sports shows got wind of it. Think about Stephen A. Smith screaming “You simply CAN NOT have people tie their ding-a-lings together” and Mike Greenberg’s face as it happens. Between this and the Sam Richardson stuff, it’s a miracle I was able to pay attention to the actual plot at all.

7. Croissants


Croissants are delicious and I love to make breakfast sandwiches out of them but they are also just very, very flaky and impossible to eat without getting little shards of pastry everywhere. By the time you’re done, it looks like a carb explosion on your shirt. It’s a real problem.

Also, not really related, but I would order a breakfast pastry called The Carb Explosion. I would need a nap afterwards but I think I would enjoy it.

6. Roy


Notes on Roy:

  • I worry sometimes that he’s becoming a sort of cartoon of what he once was, between his swearing and crankiness and general sadism
  • But I still do love him and laughed really hard at the reveal in the scene I screencapped up there
  • It will never not make me laugh that he shouts “WHISTLE” instead of blowing a whistle

It just dawned on me this week that he might get a head coaching job of his own at some point and now I really, really want to see how that works. I think he might end up in actual prison.

5. Keeley


I am happy that she is happy and receiving a lot of nice gifts. I like that she seems to have a lot of fuzzy hats. I hope she does not choke on a gift her rich new girlfriend hides in another pastry.

These are my thoughts on Keeley, who seems to be doing pretty great right now, all things considered.

4. Sam’s Dad


Sam’s dad:

  • Seems like a great dude
  • Is full of tranquility and good advice
  • Looks like he could crush someone’s head in his fist if he wanted to
  • Strolled into another chef’s kitchen and offered to cook dinner, which is not always advisable but seemed to work for him
  • Looks like he gives amazing hugs

He feels like one of those dudes who can say “everything will be okay” and have people believe him both instantly and completely.

3. Jamie Tartt




I am very sure they are doing this on purpose now, giving him words to say that end in a hard E sound so he can plop his little “eh” in place of it. It’s happening every week at this point. Multiple times. I do not care. I love it and want them to do it forever. Every time he’s on the screen I sit here waiting for it. I giggle a little when it happens. I don’t know what this says about me as a viewer or professional television critic but I also kind of do not care. The only thing that upsets me about it all is that I did not get to hear him explain his ex-girlfriend’s new book to anyone.

“Keel-eh has a signed cop-eh of Sense and Sensibilit-eh.”

You just heard it in your head as you read that, didn’t you? Do not lie to me.

2. Nate


Most of the focus here, understandably, will be on his little wipeout on the street where he ruined his fancy arts and crafts project and ate pavement in front of the very mean girl he has a little crush on. That is fine. Again, it was pretty funny. I do like to see people fall down. I blame this on and/or credit this to many formative hours of my childhood spent in front of a television watching America’s Funniest Home Videos. But again, two things are worth noting here:

THING NUMBER ONE: I think it would be creepy and weird to get a little damn diorama asking you on a date from a little oddball who keeps showing up at your job and staring through the window at you, so let’s go ahead and say this was all for the best

THING NUMBER TWO: Nate looked at himself in the mirror without spitting at his reflection, which is both a huge step for him and a hilarious thing to be considered “a huge step”

I am on board with the Nate Redemption Tour now. Good for him. I hope he and Jane have a dozen little awkward/mean children, but split evenly, like how Kermit and Miss Piggy’s kids are all either frogs or pigs and never horrifying hybrids.

1. Coach Beard


A fascinating man.