NFL power poll
It's staggering where we are with QB play in the NATIONAL Football League, and that it took Colin Kaepernick completely botching a job interview not to generate interest from the Bears (did you see Sunday night?), the Broncos, the Dolphins or even the Buccaneers.
(Side question: Want to know the world's best example of how fantasy sports are not real sports? Meet Jameis Winston, who actually is a top-10 fantasy QB because of quantity and big-play ability despite the fact that he offers more turnovers than a German bakery.)
So how many of the QBs slinging it right now would you be willing to trust in three years?
It's crazy to think about, right? Because there are several dudes who we do or recently used to trust in the moment. But do you trust Brady, Brees, Rivers, Big Ben, Cam, Stafford or several others moving forward?
The QB questions heading into the offseason and the free agents and the rookies make this a very intriguing time.
Chief among those items of interest is where does Tua Tagovailoa land after his injury?
(Side points about Tua: First, those wondering if he comes back, why? Why come back when you can rehab in the NFL and get paid doing it? Second, the only thing Tua could do coming back is actually hurt his draft stock. Third, does anyone else think that Tua will fall on draft day and then the Patriots move up into the early 20s and take him? Sigh. Another decade of New England excellence.)
But if you look at the best teams in the league, the correlation is as clear as the cliché. (Or is it?)
1. New England (9-1). Call 'em stubborn. Call me set in my ways. I'm not budging on the Patriots until Bill and Brady are no longer together.
2. New Orleans (8-2). Yes, I'm that high on these Saints. Yes, they lost to the Falcons, but everyone this side of the Patriots has a "How'd that happen?" moment on their schedule.
3. Baltimore (8-2). He has taken a step forward certainly, but as good as he has been, does anyone else wonder what Lamar Jackson will do in the postseason?
4. San Francisco (9-1). The record demands respect, but it's really hard to believe in these 49ers long term. Who is the player that will convert third-and-6 in the postseason? We'll wait.
5. Green Bay (8-2). Buy Packers stock friends, because of all the QBs having MVP-level regular seasons, do you trust any of them like you trust Aaron Rodgers when you need to go 70 yards in 90 seconds with one timeout and your season on the line? Again, we'll wait.
28. Denver (3-7). Yes, the Jets have the same record and likely do not have the same level of talent across the top 22. But, gang, you have to wonder how bad a team has to be to blow a 20-0 halftime lead. Forget the records, this may be too high for the Broncos.
29. New York Giants (2-8). The only question about this season is whether we get any kind of gauge on what Daniel Jones could be. Does anyone have any inkling at this point?
30. Miami (2-8). Way to remember the mission, our mouthy mammal friends. That said, man, the Tank for Tua sentiments now seem somewhat callous, no?
31. Washington (1-9). Man, when a rookie as bad as Dwayne Haskins is questioning his offensive linemen the dysfunction is not strong enough.
32. Cincinnati (0-10). Hello Bengals, our old friend.
Lookouts on the look
Hard not to have "what's next" thoughts about the possibilities of the Lookouts no longer being connected to Major League Baseball — which could be a death sentence in the long term.
First and foremost, that would be tough on my tots, who love an evening at the Lookouts game for a variety of reasons — the sneaky-good pizza, the spinning wheel at the entrance, the chance to spend more than a fair amount of coin in the gift shop, the lazy smile that the second ballpark "CoCola" brings to Daddy's face.
Second, if you are looking for more info from the Lookouts' point of view, here's TFP all-around ace David Paschall's report on the matter.
That said, I think this entire conversation is less about the stadiums or the facilities from the MLB point of view as it is about paying the minor league players more money without actually increasing expenses.
MLB bigwigs know that the details of the lawsuits filed by current minor league players who claim they are playing/working for less than minimum wage must be addressed.
And this move is a broad stroke in addressing that basic business concern — increase expenditures + reduced employees = net neutral — that many may be missing.
Still, as TFP ace sports columnist Mark Wiedmer notes here, we are scarred as a city by all our previous sporting events/teams leaving.
But those generalities and sentimentalities that give us all pause do not necessarily mean the stadium is anything more than a tangent in the bigger picture in terms of this conversation of MLB connections.
And if that is the case, if we are going to look seriously at the stadium issue, in the macro sense we must realize that a) the new owner of the Red Wolves soccer franchise here is building his own playground without public money, and b) the keepers of the local money certainly have a lot of folks/causes lined up looking for help and assistance (starting with our county school system).
Man, this feels like the Lookouts are about to be crossed off, doesn't it?
Grab a tissue
OK, for the most part, professional golfers are as sentimental/soft as Willie's classic "Last Thing I Needed First Thing This Morning" when it comes to fan noise and/or heckling.
Well, this one is beyond the expected rabbit ears and beams a moment that reminds us all why we love sports.
Meet Brandon Matthews, a professional golfer trying to scratch and claw his way through the minor leagues of the sport and make his claim.
Matthews missed a 12-foot birdie putt on the third playoff hole on the most recent event at the PGA Tour Latinoamerica event as a fan was yelling and heckling him.
Yes, most pro golfers who would rather blame Mother Teresa than accept responsibility for anything this side of the "Game is better when Tiger's in contention" conversation. And that was Matthews' was first inclination.
But, despite losing a spot in next year's British Open if he had won, Matthews showed what it means to be the champion golfer of the year off the course.
Originally upset at the loud outburst during his putting, Mathews learned that the spectator who yelled during his crucial putt has Down Syndrome.
Here's what Matthews told the PGA Tour Latinoamerica website: "It was a middle-aged man with a mental disability. He said something and got excited. There's nothing you can do about that. The guy was out there, he was enjoying it. I feel for the guy. I'm sure he felt terrible, that's why I went and gave him a glove and a ball afterwards and gave him a hug. It's just one of those things that happens. Unfortunately it was out of my control."
That's a birdie in the picture, my friends.
This and that
— OK, who among us has not had that burning, gaseous feeling in our belly? Well, then there is this guy, who was doing an on-air TV interview and let the horns blow, if you will. When the #FartGate is trending on Twitter, you have to check it out, right? Also, I know my wife's grandma always said, "It's better to let it out and feel the shame than keep it in and feel the pain."
— Wow, this is the first official week that the college and pro best both made money. A 6-2 week (we counted the La. Tech loss because, well, we are making picks on Thursday morning with Thursday morning lines, and in truth, if Marshall had suspended its three best players like La Tech did I would have counted it) in college is followed by a 3-2 NFL weekend. Now that is entertaining.
— And while we are here, get on the Vols now and take the 5-to-6 points. That line is going to shrink between now and Saturday. Also, we are against the Akron Arths this week, too.
— While we're here, and because we mentioned this on Monday's Press Row, here's the final score: Team Greeson 110.9-Team Wells 108.2. Yes, one more Keenan Allen catch Monday night likely would have been the difference.
— Here's today's A2 column on Colin Kaepernick, and friends, if you are not a regular A2 reader, pull up a chair and enjoy.
— OK, I'll say it: Hank Williams Jr. is overrated and underrated all in one big bunch And Blues Man may be the most underrated song of his overrated career. (And yes, I am 100 percent a fan of his work, which makes me a defender and an accuser in the same breath. I need a drink. What do you mean it's 8:45 in the morning?) Also of note here is that it sounds more than a little like "Tell Lorrie I love her" from Keith Whitley, but whatever.
— OK, anyone else overly curious about the possibility of Gronk coming back for a playoff run with the Pats?
— Want to know when your campaign reaches a place of relevancy? You start getting hammered — from both sides — on a minor miscue. Welcome to the race, Mayor Pete. This could be fun.
— The 2020 MLB Hall of Fame ballot has been released and it is led by Derek Jeter. If Mariano Rivera was named on every ballot, shouldn't Jeter also be unanimous?
OK, it's a Tuesday. True or false. (Why of course, that's true. It is Tuesday.)
True or false, Philip Rivers is a Hall of Famer.
True or false, Booger is actually worse in the Monday night booth than Witten.
True or false, Derek Jeter will get 100 percent of the vote for the Hall.
As for today, Nov. 19, let's review.
On this day in 1620, the Mayflower reached Cape Cod.
On this day in 1805, Lewis and Clark reached the Pacific.
On this day in 1863, Abe Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg address.
Wow, sneaky big day in U.S. history, huh?
On this day 41 years ago, Herman Edwards' fumble return with 31 seconds left gave the Eagles an improbable win over the Giants. It also birthed the "Victory" formation in football.
Meg Ryan is 58 today. Jodie Foster is 57.
Happy birthday Ted Turner, the McCallie School grad who is 81 today.
Rushmore of cable channels. Go.