5-at-10: NFL power poll, powerless morning, Would you sign Kaepernick?, Rushmore of Johnny Cash songs

5-at-10: NFL power poll, powerless morning, Would you sign Kaepernick?, Rushmore of Johnny Cash songs

September 12th, 2017 by Jay Greeson in Sports - Columns

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Jeremy Maclin (18) runs in a touchdown against Cincinnati Bengals cornerback William Jackson (22) in the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Gary Landers)

Photo by The Associated Press /Times Free Press.

NFL Power Poll

We're back and the NFL's first week is complete.

In review, there was more bad than good.

Bad: Colts. What was that? Yes, your starting quarterback is out, but man an almost-30-point loss to the meddling Rams without Andrew Luck makes him arguably the most valuable player in the league not named Aaron Rodgers.

Badder: Bengals. Shutout at home and it's a very real possible scenario that Marvin Lewis has one of the three hottest seats in the league.

Baddest: Quarterback play. Gross. 

To the Power Poll. (And these are based on what we've seen in week one; what we've seen not what we think we know.)

1. Kansas City. A powerful fourth quarter allowed the Chiefs to hammer the Patriots in New England. It was a pricey win, though, because All-Pro safety Eric Berry was lost for the season.

2. Oakland. The Raiders went on the road against a Tennessee team many believe will be a playoff qualifier and handled their business. Know this: If Marshawn Lynch stays healthy and focused, that offense is going to be really good.

3. Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers did Aaron Rodgers things, and it was beautiful to watch. But an improved and revamped defense kept Seattle out of the end zone.

4. Dallas. Yes, the Giants were shorthanded, but that was a dominant win over a good team.

5. Baltimore. A lot of folks thought the Ravens had the best defense in the league. Their shutout at Cincinnati did little to change that view.   


28. New York Jets. Hey, if you're going to be bad, be like the Jets and trade all your players and move to the front of the Sam Darold sweepstakes.

29. San Francisco. Three points? Three measles points? Egad. Do you think Kyle Shanahan is sitting alone in the sark with Peaches and Herb playing in the background watching Matt Ryan film? Me too.

30. Houston. Can the Tom Savage experiment be over? Please? For the love of Goodness, can it be over.

31. Indianapolis. The Colts got beat so bad Chuck Pagano didn't even know who the Colts played in the postgame news conference.

32. Cincinnati. The Marvin Lewis questions are going to grow, but what about this one: Is Andy Dalton any good? We're not so sure.

Interstate 75 traffic is peppered by rain and wind from the outer bands of tropical storm Irma on Monday, Sept. 11, 2017, afternoon at the Highway 153 interchange in Chattanooga.

Interstate 75 traffic is peppered by rain and...

Photo by Tim Barber /Times Free Press.

Powerless for real

Yes, the bottom end of the NFL is staggeringly bad. So it goes.

But, we're going to move quickly today for a number of reasons. 

First, we can be better about being concise. No one anywhere wants to read the 5-at-10 War and Peace version. 

Secondly, the details of our fantasy comeback — God bless you Philip Rivers and your fourth quarter drama — are probably not overly interesting to most of you.

Thirdly and potentially most importantly, we are powerless this morning on Signal. 

That's right. No coffee. No interwebs. No wifi.

The family is playing Clue on the screened-in porch — Colonel Mustard in the Conservatory with the lead pipe, people — as we type. Our dependence on power and technology is only truly evident when we are without power and technology. Man, somewhere the Little House on the Prairie people would be horrified.

Good night John Boy.

In this Monday, Sept. 12, 2016, file photo, San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid (35) and quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) kneel during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams in Santa Clara, Calif. Reid has resumed his kneeling protest for human rights during the national anthem, after joining then-teammate Kaepernick's polarizing demonstration last season. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

In this Monday, Sept. 12, 2016, file photo,...

Photo by The Associated Press/Times Free Press.

And the next question, same as the first

OK, we discussed the awfulness that was the quarterback play of the really bad teams in the NFL.

And it was bad.  Awful in fact.

On Monday we showed you the numbers of the bottom layer of dregginess. It was less than pretty. Now comes the inevitable question: Isn't Colin Kaepernick better than a lot of these guys?

Yes, we know the trade off. 

He would turn off some fans. He would become a lightning rod and bring with him a truckload of distractions. He would be limited in regard to any new playbook and who knows what kind of shape he'd be in.

But for a lot of the teams at the bottom of the pile — and yes, we're pretty sure we made up the word 'dressiness' earlier — would Kaepernick not be a much better option than a Tolzien or a Savage or a Josh McCown or several other worthless dudes.

Yes, the fans might be mad, but if you are a Colts fan per se, and that division is completely wide open, would you rather have six weeks of Kaepernick or however long until Andrew Luck returns and roll the dice about potentially going 3-3 and staying in the playoff hunt or would you want 1-5 Tolzien and the season be over before your franchise player even takes his first snap?


This and that

— The first Monday of the NFL season normally produces a doubleheader. This Monday was no different, but aside from the Vikings handcuffing the Saints and the Broncos blocking a last-second field-goal try to hold off the Chargers' charge, the storylines were augmented by some sideline commentary. Here's Jim Mora  on a local newscast unaware he's live and saying the anchor is full of S---. Then there was the entire and gripping side story of Sergio Dipp, the ESPN sideline reporter who was equal parts awful and endearing. 

— Speaking of TV moments, if you are like us, the coverage of Hurricane Irma has been the flame to our moth. Couple of things: One, every time a weather person says "A1A" does anyone else reflectively respond, "Beachfront avenue" because, well you know? Next, did you see the CNN exchange — yes, Stewwie, we know you skipped the fake-news hub — between the desk anchor and the female reporter in the storm who said the wind was really blowing and moving things, including her, and she said, "and as you know, I'm a big girl." The in-studio dude crushed it, and owned social media by saying she's beautiful at any size and there's nothing wrong with curves. (And, there is absolutely nothing wrong with curves, and we're sure this may be the one thing CNN has reported in the last decade that Stewwie is OK with.)

— Dodgers lost again. Indians won again. For L.A., losers of 11 in a row and 16 of their last 17, are having their worst stretch since before Jackie Robinson put on a Brooklyn Dodgers uni. As for the Indians, they are cruising and crushing people. 

— In their 19-game winning streak, the Indians have a plus-100 run differential. It's the best run since the 1939 Yankees put a plus-130 on opponents over a 19-game stretch. Want one more stat that screams, "Let's go Tribe" people: The Indians have six shutouts in their 19-game winning streak. Of the other 29 MLB teams, 14 of them have six or fewer shutouts all season. The Indians are going for 20 tonight, and hand the ball to ace Corey Kluber.

— This makes us happy. Nintendo is planning on selling its old-school console. Good times. 

Today's questions

No school today in Hamilton County. The 5-at-10 tots are stoked.

Let's do a little T or F on this wet and windy Tuesday.

True of false, the Patriots are still the best team in the NFL. True or false, a quarterback-needy team will sign Kaepernick sometime this season. True or false, the Dodgers will make the World Series. True or false, the Rushmore of old-school Nintendo games as Tecmo Bowl, RBI Baseball, Contra and Mike Tyson's Punch-Out. (If you say false, you must provide one that cracks that formidable four.)

On this day in 1958, the Supreme Court ordered Central High in Little Rock to integrate.

Born on this day were Jesse Owens (1913), Barry White (1944), Paul Walker (1973), Henry Hudson (1575) and Jennifer Hudson — no relation — who is 36 today.

As for a Rushmore, Johnny Cash died on this day all the way back in 2003. 

You can make a hard argument he was the country music GOAT. Rushmore of Johnny Cash songs. 


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