Monday Night (Arena) Football – Colorado at Dallas

17 03 2008

Good evening. Apparently, ESPN didn’t re-license “We’ve Got it Goin’ On” for this year, in favor of some random instrumental track. Oh, will the belt-tightening brought on by the sub-prime crisis never abate?

We get Dave Pasche, Shaun King, and some other guy Ray Bentley tonight.

Shaun King, Re: John Dutton: “He’s hot like fish grease!”

(FYI – I cheated and TiVoed most of this game, so timecodes represent time remaining in the quarter.)

14:54 – Harmon lets the kickoff bounce off his leg and back out of bounds for a weak touchback. Dutton whips his first pass to a wide open friend of the blog Ben Nelson. ESPN kindly explains the game to us, which leads to this gem from Shaun King: “Stay within these rules, you can make big plays.” Intriguing. Also an interesting stat: Ben Nelson has only been on the losing team in 9 games. That’s wild.

12:28 – Dutton to Nelson, touchdown. XP is good, 7-0 Colorado. It’s apparently hard to hear in Dallas. In explaining the new Jack linebacker rules, ESPN chose a play where the Jack linebacker stands stock still for the whole play. That was illuminating.

11:52 – Chris Sanders goes to work, with a wild overthrow on the hitch and go. The most exciting play so far has been a 7-yard pitch play. Woo! Josh White also catches a fullback screen. The Desperados seem to enjoy the conservative playcalling. Official Roommate of It’s Still Football: “They just mentioned ’2nd Team All-Arena.’ They should be required by law to tack ‘… for whatever that’s worth,” to the end of that sentence.”

7:33 – Pitch to White, he walks in untouched. 7-7 ballgame. Dolezel is calling plays that make him look awesome.

This announcing team made the same mistake that Jeopardy! made – Alex Trebek said that nobody had missed an answer before the commercial break, but the girl on the right missed “Iodine.” This announcing team said that neither quarterback made an incomplete pass, but Sanders did on the very first play by Dallas.

6:52 – Quinnie got murdered into the boards by… 21, and holds on to the ball. 1st down, and a completely ludicrous dance ensues. Pasche mentions how impressive it is that Dutton throws the ball before the receiver made the break, which leads to a sarcastic 15-minute dissertation that culminates in “Are these 2nd-tier football players, or GENIUSES that play this game?” from Official Yeti Roommate.

Winfield Garnett stands Colorado FB Robert Thomas at the two. I will be decidedly impressed if Colorado holds… They do not. Ryan asks if it was Sir Isaac Einstein that ran it in for the score.

3:13 – 14-7 Colorado.

3:05 – Dallas takes over. Sanders gets whacked in the end zone and flops like nobody’s business trying to draw a penalty before firing a rocket into the crowd. Sanders to Pettis, and the defender drags Pettis to the boards, and scares the shit out of three girls sitting in the front row. I think you need to hit on those girls if that happens next time. A running play brings us to the end of the first quarter. Boo. “Does ESPN realize that by giving money to this league, they’re depriving the world of really fast couriers? Construction workers?”

Hooray! A Jerry Jones interview! Who woke him up from his nap for this? Two vaguely exciting plays happened, and Jones didn’t skip a beat in his bland platitudes about how wonderful sports are. Chris Sanders has the unsteady footwork of a newborn gazelle, by the way. He is able to bootleg for the touchdown, however, as Jerry Jones starts talking about the Cowboys. I don’t think he’s watching the game at all.

11:52 (2nd) – 14-14. Jerry Jones is STILL talking, and it’s boring as crap. Though if you’re interested in the Cowboys… no, you’d still be bored.

ONSIDE KICK RECOVERED BY DALLAS! Jerry Jones raises his voice a little bit to be heard over the fact that the crowd is going nuts. The announcing team asks “Mr. Jones” (extremely polite young men, these announcers) about Darren McFadden, and Jerry responds with “Well, he should’ve won the Heisman. No disrespect to [pause, as Jerry wracks his brain to recall] the winner.” Nice, Jerry.

9:44 – JESUS CHRIST STOP TALKING TO JERRY JONES.

8:44 – Finally. I wish it were KSK’s version of Jerry Jones. The real Jerry Jones is dull, dull, dull.

Kevin Nagle (East Strousberg?) goes off with an injury, and Pasche recaps everything we were missed while being lulled into a coma by Jerry Jones. Sanders misses another receiver and Remy Hamilton sets the Arena League record for made field goals in putting Dallas ahead 17-14 with 7:25 left in the half.

6:51 – Dutton to Quinnie in front of those girls in the front row again, and they freak out again. Oh, yeah, if you’re curious: I’m quasi-live-blogging this, because I started the TiVo, and I’m about 10 minutes behind right now.

5:10 – Dutton to Pyatt, Pyatt makes a nice move along the seam, and goes in for the score. The extra point is shanked right, but the good news for Colorado is that the kicker got whacked in the earhole, and they get another shot at it. The bad news for Colorado is that he misses the kick in the other direction this time.

2:43 – 2 deep passes by Sanders go awry, and then a less deep pass completely fails, following which we are treated to a story about Chris Sanders’ mom talking Jerry Jones into signing her son. Really? That’s vaguely stage-mother-ish. Though, hilariously, she tried to get him to sign Chris to the Dallas Cowboys “Well, she… ah… kind of stalked Jones a little bit,” says one of the non-Shaun King announcers, before going on to say that she left the packet of clippings and whatnot at a dance recital for Jones’ granddaughter. Yeah… that’s a little creepy.

1:51 – A pass interference penalty on Floyd will keep this drive alive. “[Floyd] did the smart thing and just grabbed Bush.” Hee.

Clint Dolezel is pissed at Sanders, by the way. They just bitched at each other about slants v. something else, and Sanders was directed to “Just make a decision.”

With 16 seconds left, Josh Bush catches the pass in the first row, and then Floyd gives him a shove after the play is over. That was decidedly awesome. “Okay, I liked that,” admits Ryan.

Remy Hamilton misses off of left iron, and then Colorado tries to return it all the way back, and fails. The highlight, however is that Dustin Barno makes one big block and one smaller block without his helmet. I don’t know how he lost it, but that was fun. Halftime!

14:30(3rd) – The first offensive play play of the second half sees Sanders throwing into the fourth row as he’s falling on his ass. His mom is, no doubt, displeased. Criss Angel (really? I somehow doubt it. Oh, and you might want to turn your sound down.) screws up an interception or at least a pass deflection. Marcus Nash is afflicted with the dropsies, but Will Pettis can hang on to the ball. Pettis flips the ball off the net, and then bonks it off his helmet. Dr. Dolezel is barely amused. He provides the flicker of a smile and a quantum nod, and that will be sufficient for you, Mr. Pettis.

Question (from ESPN): “What do Kristy Lee Cook of American Idol and the AFL have in common?”

Answer (from the peanut gallery): “Both are cheap knockoff sluts of the real thing?”

11:20 – 24-20, Dallas, and Remy Hamilton kicks off to Jason Harmon… touchback. John Dutton’s sister-in-law is Kristy Lee Cook. Seriously – her countrified “Eight Days a Week” was a compelling argument for capital punishment. Ray Bentley apparently is the one that watches AI in the broadcast booth. Shaun King doth protest too much: “I like it… I just don’t get much time to watch it.” And now we get a three minute Simon Cowell discussion that ends with includes “If you think Simon’s bad, you should hear a football coach.” Riveting commentary. Fortunately, they do comment on Luke Pettijohn just brutalizing Dutton. That followed his second incompletion late enough that it drew the late hit flag.

8:58 – Dutton to Nelson, who traipses past an apparently asleep Dallas defender for the score. Seriously, the guy played it like they were operating with two-hand-touch rules. Correction – his two incompletions were erased by penalties. So, he’s still perfect. AGH. More American Idol talk? All right, Dutton’s talking about how his wife gets cranky when Simon criticizes Kristie Lee Cook.

When asked about Mr. Cowell, Dutton responds, “He’s just lucky he’s not criticizing us, because that wouldn’t fly in professional football.” WHAT? What does that even mean?
Why haven’t we been talking about the Dutton foundation? We get 4 follow-up questions on American Idol, but one reference to his charitable foundation?

7:28 – Pettis commits some scary offensive pass interference, but it’s not called, he turns on the afterburners for the score. The XP clangs off the post, and it’s 30-26 Dallas.

5:55 – Bobby Perry intercepts a tipped ball, and this could be serious trouble for Colorado.
Shaun King with the useful commentary! He notes that the Dallas D-line is getting closer and closer to Dutton, and that could change the tide, if the Colorado O-line is getting worn out.

4:39 – Sanders to Pettis is juuuuuust complete. Touchdown, Dallas. “Wrong read, but he made it,” snarks Dr. Dolezel. 37-26, Dallas Meanwhile, this year’s Arena Bowl commercial is infinitely less irritating than last year’s, but also is infinitely lower-budget.

3:07 – Offsides on Dallas, though one could argue that the motion man was screamingly offsides as well. New stat from ESPN: souvenirs. A reasonable checkdown pass from Dutton to Thomas earns them the first down, and the next pass goes into the stands, and as Aaron’s Lucky Fan of the Game holds it aloft in celebration, it’s stolen by the woman behind her, and then stolen from her by some bearded dude in the next row up. The original recipient gets the ball back, and hands it back to the thief, who hands it to some younger guy next to her. This ball is being passed around like the drunk girl at a party. Dutton throws two more balls from his backside, basically, and turns the ball over on downs to end the 3rd quarter.

Dustin Barno almost gets a pick on the second pass of the 4th quarter, but Sanders follows with a nice pass to Nash for the 1st down.

13:13 (4th) – Sanders to a wiiiiiiiide open Pettis, standing still at the 2. He crawls into the end zone to put Dallas up by 17. 18 with the extra point. 44-26 Dallas. Rashard Floyd was made to look like a complete imbecile by Chris Sanders looking deep on that play.

12:09 – Jason Harmon looked to have a 48-yard return, but he was pushed into the boards far earlier. Dutton to Nelson makes up most of that yardage.

ESPN mentions AFL’s unbeatens, including, bafflingly, Cleveland. It’s mentioned that Shaun King spent some time with that franchise. It is not mentioned that Shaun King may or may not have been a large part of why they were sickeningly awful.

9:04 Ben Nelson is left alone in the back of the end zone, and Dutton finds him. Another extra point doinks off the left post, and I agree with John Dutton: why have they not been going for 2? 44-32, Dallas.

BEST WIRED UP EVER. Chris Sanders: “Hit me in the head! HIT ME IN THE HEAD! [a lineman complies] Thank you.”

7:54 – I’m also pleased about the attention that the broadcast team is paying to the fact that Dr. Dolezel is the offensive coordinator when he’s uninjured.

7:05 – Rashad Floyd doesn’t totally make up for his earlier error, but does grab the tipped ball for the interception. Colorado could get back into this – check that, Will Pettis intercepts Dutton’s pass, and takes it back to the 10. Oh well. Shaun King: “I can understand, having played the position, that it’s very difficult to throw when they’re hitting you every play.” Hm… was that the problem, Shaun?

5:47 – Sanders whangs a play that Dr. Dolezel could’ve completed in his sleep. Dr. Dolezel responds with a scowl and the following: “Same play.” “What?” “Same. Play.” And Sanders fucks up that play too. Jesus. They send Remy Hamilton out for the field goal, which he misses, and then they interfere with the catching of the kick. Well, this has been a series of missed opportunities.

4:15 – Colorado takes over with a 5-yard bonus for the kick catch interference, and after a first down, Weatherington screams into the backfield and puts Dutton into a half-nelson. Ray Bently points out that he not only appeared to have lined up offsides, but may have gotten an early jump as well.

2:31 – Interception by Perry, and that should be that. Dr. Dolezel is taking out his frustration with Chris Sanders by forcing him to run for touchdowns and lead with his head. “Bonk,” says Chris Sanders’ head the first time. The second time, he gets in untouched. XP is good, 50-32, Dallas.

1:00 warning. They’ve shown Dallas cheerleaders with some frequency, but I haven’t seen It’s Still Football’s favorite, um… what’s-her-face. Brooke!

Dutton’s Wired-up segment involves him taking full responsibility for losing this one for Colorado. That’s a bit of a downer. Oh, well, serves him right for being related to the girl who raped “Eight Days a Week.” I don’t even like “Eight Days a Week” that much.

Hey! It’s Brandon Kirsch! He’s a huge tool! He just got his ass handed to him, so, you know, that’s good. Brandon Kirsch gets a forearm to the grill from Weatherington after/during a completion to the sidelines. Brandon Kirsch, touchdown. Just call him H.R. Paddinstats. Quinnie ran into a… truck? Is there a truck parked back there? The announcing team says it’s just chairs, but I saw taillights. Now they finally give up on the extra points. The two-point conversion is unexpectedly successful! Kirsch keeps this one alive with his feet, (a skill which I don’t totally remember from his days at Purdue, but what do I know?) and somehow finds an open-enough reciever.

:31 – Onside kick fails. Well, Colorado hasn’t totally given up: Chris Sanders gets his brains beat in, which stops the clock. (Negative yardage, Dallas has the lead, there’s less than a minute left.)

:16 – Dr. Dolezel is still drawing up plays on 4th and 12. Nash baaaarely gets the first down. That’ll pretty much do it. Dallas does a solid job in their second week without their all-arena QB. Chris Sanders didn’t look good necessarily, but he was good enough. Pettis bailed him out all night, and Dutton fell apart midway through the 3rd quarter. Player of the game: totally Will Pettis, but if you go by percentage of conversation it would probably be Kristy Lee Cook or Chris Sanders’ Mom.

Your final score is 51-40, Dallas.

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2 responses

18 03 2008
Rich Giorgi

They made that reference to Ben Nelson only losing 9 games in his “EIGHT YEAR” career… 8 years, 9 losses, since 2006… that’s what I call production.

If you meld Jerry Jones and Ron Jaworski together, you get a very ugly old lady with terrible glasses who giggles and bores you to tears…

18 03 2008
Josh

I was only half-watching last night. And if they said that during Dancing with the Stars, then I missed it. Let no man say that DwtS and the AFL do not have a cross-demographic. It’s me.

Also, I kind of bizarrely like Shaun King. Is that possible?

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