Is it Friday already?
Wow. Another week in the books.
And it’s nearly fall here in Bawlmer. Brisk mornings, breezy afternoons, open windows at night. Where the hell did summer go?
None of that really matters right now, though.
Football season is here. All is well with the world.
And “Friday Mud” is here, too. Some would argue that Friday Mud is a smidge more entertaining than the NFL, but I don’t know about that. I mean, I appreciate the thought and all, but I know my place. I’ll gladly play 2nd fiddle to football.
A man’s gotta know his place.
If you’re coming to our big Purple kick-off party tonight, stop by and say “hi”. I’ll be the guy wearing the Orioles #25 Teixeira jersey. Those, I hear, are collector’s items.
Enjoy your Mud.
> I’m sure John Harbaugh wasn’t thrilled about it, but the Ray Lewis “Rex-Rant” on Thursday was just about the most entertaining 7 minutes I’ve seen since…well…the final credits and clips of “The Hangover”. I understand why Ray snapped. Pre-season is way too long, for starters. Veteran NFL players go the better part of 7 weeks now without anything really meaningful to do – or say. And I’m sure Ray won’t admit it, but having HBO set up camp with the Jets — a team that hasn’t done anything except hire a blustery head coach and employ a Hollywood-model at quarterback — has to eat at him and a lot of other players in the league. The NFL is, after all, a football league, not a soap opera. I’ll give Rex Ryan full credit — he’s also tired of not having a real game to coach. And when he wanted to throw a big piece of raw meat in the direction of I-95 South, he knew the hungriest tiger would be none other than Ray Lewis. And that’s why he tossed out the story about Ray-Ray “tapping out” a few years back when he gave Lewis a pre-season in-game assignment of calling defensive plays. And don’t think for a minute that Ryan didn’t pick those two words — tapped out — and intentionally lob that grenade in the final episode leading up to the regular season opener. Ray took the bait, alright, but it was still worthy of entry into the Lewis Press-Conference-Hall-of-Fame. Now, we sit back and see which guy comes out on top Monday night. You gotta love it…
> I’ve always said the toughest thing to do in sports is to stop losing. Sometimes it’s during a set of tennis or on the back nine of the golf course or on a 4-game basketball road trip. Sometimes (*ahem*, Chicago Cubs) it spans centuries. Sometimes you can’t post a winning record for, uh, 13 years. And occasionally, as you’re seeing right now in San Diego with the Padres, you just run out of gas and can’t turn it around in time. I hate to say it, but the Padres are done. What a shame…to play that well all spring and summer and go in the tank in September when all you needed to do was just “hang on”. Then again, we’d give our left orange tail feather in these parts just to have our baseball team play well for four months and go in the tank around Labor Day. I get it.
> There’s an animal hospital in Pittsburgh. A woman in a Steelers jersey takes a seat in the lobby with her dog and waits her turn. A man walks in with his dog. The woman says, “Awww, what a cute dog. What’s wrong with him?” The man says, “He keeps peeing on the couch. If they can’t remedy the situation, we’re going to have to get rid of him.” Another man walks in a few minutes later with his pooch. “Absolutely adorable,” the Steelers-woman says. “What’s wrong with him?” The newcomer says, “He poops in our laundry basket all the time. No matter what we try, we can’t get him to stop doing it. If they can’t give him something here, we’re going to have to put him down, it’s putting a strain on my marriage.” The man then looks over to the woman, who is carefully rubbing her little dog’s head. “What’s wrong with your dog?” the man asks. “Oh, he’s constantly getting up on his hind legs and dry-humping my calves. It’s VERY awkward. I can’t go anywhere in the house without him getting all excited, if you know what I mean, and humping my legs.” The other man says, “That’s a shame. Did you bring him here to have the vet put him down?” The Steelers-woman gasps, “Hell no…I brought him here to get his nails clipped.”
> Every Friday in football season, I’ll try to give you one upset special. And by upset special, I mean taking a road team outright to win. This week’s pick: Bengals win at New England. Hope I’m wrong on this one…
> Last week’s award-winning edition of Friday Mud featured Alfonso Soriano as the most overrated baseball player in the game today. Here, now, is my most overrated NFL player. I assume you know it’s coming, but in case you don’t, click here and enjoy. When this guy wins something, check back in with me.
> Here’s today’s Friday Featured Artist on The Morning Reaction. Check out the video from Florence and the Machine. Their CD (“Lungs”) is a year old, but it’s phenomenal. (Special thanks to our resident Orioles Apologist, Allen MacCallum, for giving me this CD. Next year, give me winning baseball and I’ll be thrilled…)
> I don’t know what Matt Kuchar has being doing lately to get his golf game on the uptick, but whatever is, I’ll gladly fork over my credit card and buy some. Dude. Is. On. Fire.
> You’ve heard it by now if you’ve been listening to the show (Steve Melewski would tell you that NO ONE listens. Which, if that’s true, means you DON’T know…) but I’m taking the Ravens to beat the Jets on Monday, 24-13. I could go into a long explanation about how teams that get as ramped up about themselves as the Jets have don’t often have enough energy left to actually play the game…or how the Ravens are poised to “set the tone” right away with a big road win…but I won’t go into that explanation. Ravens win. That’s it.
> My fantasy football team (I Have Forgiven Jesus) is off to a great start, with 13 points last night from Visanthe Shiancoe. I do have a weekend quandry, though. Do I go with Anquan Boldin or Mike Sims-Walker at WR? Other than that, my lineup is solid.