Weekend In Review: The Grudening

8 04 2008

Gruden the Lesser? Maybe not.

The Other Gruden, last seen searching for a whiskey sour.

Well, well, Orlando Predators. We meet again for the first time! We had heard rumor of skilled players present in the Greater Central Florida region, but we assumed that a search for them would be Juan Ponce de Leon-esque: fruitless and impotent, with a chance of mosquito swarms and ending with an unfortunate meeting with a poisoned arrow. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Welcome back to eating at the big kids table, Jay.

ORLANDO 57, Chicago 56 (OT)

If Orlando can stick around until late in the 4th quarter, they seem to be able to pull out the W. That’s reasonably impressive, especially as Shane Stafford isn’t putting up especially gaudy numbers, and their defense isn’t really at the forefront of anyone’s mind. Nevertheless, who’s 4-2 and second in the suddenly WILDLY competitive Southern Mitsubishi Division? I’ll give you a hint: it rhymes with “schmedators.” Plus, we got to see the surprise on someone’s face when one’s quadricep gives out unexpectedly.

See below for scores higher than the one that Michael Wilbon was shocked by.

Read the rest of this entry »

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What On Earth Can We Expect: The Colorado Crush

15 02 2008

Colorado Flag

The longer you stare at this flag, trying to think of something funny to say about it, the more it starts to look like a scary eyeball.

Facts:

  • National Conference Mitsubishi (HAI!) Central Division
  • Arena Bowl Championships: 1 (2005)
  • This is when you read the High Altitude Directions, as the Crush play, oh, I don’t know: a mile above sea level. Perhaps you’ve heard that Denver is that a mile high? It’s just come to my attention.
  • For no discernable reason, they recently practiced outside.
  • Last year’s record: 8-8 (3rd), lost to San Jose in the 2nd round.

A Paragraph About Upcoming Horror/Delight:

Coloradans, Damien Harrell is not going to be walking through that door. Whit Taylor is not going to be walking through that door. John Elway will be walking through that door, but he’ll be carrying a briefcase, slapping his blackberry like Al from Quantum Leap, and cursing. While Ben Nelson is a guy that Joe would like to cuddle with, he’s simply not the difference-maker Harrell was. The Denver Post is cautiously optimistic, but John Dutton sounds like he’s basically saying “Nothing is wrong! Look at the weapons we still have! Sticks and rocks are dangerous! Ben Nelson could be considered at least an Enfield rifle, and there were people using those well into WWI! I think!”

Bullet Points About People:

  • I am legally obligated to reference this article, which talks about Charrod Taylor being on the USS Cole when it was attacked in 2000. I respect the crap out of this defensive lineman, and hope he has a brilliant career.
  • Did I mention Ben Nelson is from Minnesota? And that Joe is, too? No?
  • Rookie FB/LB Michael Berg is from Haaaaaaahvad. So, really make sure your heckling is suitably esoteric.
  • Famous owner alert: John Elway owns the team. Grumpy people think he’s trying to turn the AFL into the NFL’s development league. Free Substitution is often referred to as “the Elway Rule.” Smile can be seen from space.

The Good:

Dutton can conceivably spread the ball around. Defense has been reasonably good, if anonymous.

The Bad:

The loss of Harrell – to a division rival, no less – is scaaaary.

Completely Arbitrary Prediction:

I literally have no idea whatsoever to expect from the Crush. Let’s call it… 7-9, lose in the Wild Card round to… Los Angeles? I give up.





Arena Quarterbacks Convene Council of Trent Green

8 10 2007

We at It’s Still Football have been fortunate to obtain the transcript of a hastily-convened meeting of all AFL starting QBs. The topic: the injury to Miami Dolphins QB Trent Green. Here are their assessments of the situation. And, thanks to Awful Announcing, video that – by now – everybody’s seen. For context. Or something.

Dr. Clint Dolezel, Ph. D. (Dallas): You know how I avoid career-threatening injuries like this? I don’t fucking block. It’s actually one of my many doctoral theses, entitled “Why A Quarterback Shouldn’t Have to Block.” Allow me to read to you from the abstract: “This thesis deals with why I never throw a block. I am a quarterback. Blocking occurs when a player without the ball impedes the progress of a defender. If the ball is not in my hands, it is in the air on the way to a receiver, in a receiver’s hands in the end zone, or I am on the sideline, having recently thrown a touchdown pass. In any of these situations, there is no one to block.” I cite my sources. They are impeccable.

Sherdrick Bonner (Arizona): Players now are so big, and fast, and strong that you have to protect yourself against this sort of thing. You have to practice good fundamentals so you don’t get hurt. People are talking about the rules to protect the quarterback so these sorts of injuries don’t happen on an ordinary play, and Mr. Green has to play smart and not lead with his head like that on an extraordinary play. In the Cretaceous Period, when I was a rookie, it was more anything-goes, and we had to know these things, simply to protect ourselves. Plus, there was a chance you’d get eaten by a Tyrannosaurus Rex. So, you know, you had to be alert.

Matt Nagy (Columbus): Let me tell you something. If that [expletive] Coach Walrus calls another [expletive] running play, I’m going to block with his hydrocephalitic noggin. After I RIP it from his BODY. THAT BASTARD. LISTEN TO ME: I KNOW WHAT I’M [expletive] [expletive] [clever new compound expletive] DOING.

Brett Dietz (Tampa Bay): Brett Dietz blocks with textbook form. Brett Dietz leaves the smell of cinnamon and vanilla in the wake of his blocks. Brett Dietz. Brett Dietz’s blocks remove stains from opposing players’ jerseys. Brett Dietz does not fall unconscious, unless it is by choice. Brett Dietz.

John Dutton (Colorado): I’m better than Cleo Lemon! Put ME in! Please. I’m so hungry. Oh, yeah, Trent Green. Tragic. Cut down in his prime. An American Hero. Whatever. Just sign me to a contract. I gots bills to pay.

Jeff Smoker (Nashville): [Drools.]

Matt D’Orazio (Chicago): Here’s what I don’t get: it’s a terrible block, just poor form by Trent, but Travis Johnson just goes after him. That’s just classless, waving your arms about like that. I simply can’t abide that sort of demonstration. Unless it’s by Bobby Sippio. But he usually earned it. By the way, does anyone know who I can throw the ball to next year? No? Okay, I have to call my financial planner.

Chris Griesen (Georgia): If I’m struck in the head, the only effect is the resounding chime, like someone tapped a glass bowl made of the finest crystal. It’s soothing, really. I then get back up and throw a 8-yard out pattern.

Shane Stafford (Orlando): Coach Gruden said he’d talk to us about it more when he gets back from hanging out with his family. I hate it when we have team meetings after Gruden Family Time – he’s always cranky and says “Jon says to do it this way,” in this weird sing-song falsetto. Occasionally he’ll get all weepy, and that’s really awkward. I just don’t want to get hurt.

Tony Graziani (Philadelphia): HEY! I THINK IT WAS A QUESTIONABLE DECISION TO BLOCK IN THAT MANNER BY TRENT, BUT ALSO WRONG FOR TRAVIS TO TAUNT A MOTIONLESS OPPONENT. ADDITIONALLY, I FIND TRAVIS’ APOLOGY LACKING. By the way, how’s my hair?

Mark Grieb: [Squints.] Yes. I know how to block. That’s not how you do it. I do it with the power of my mind. And practice. And community relations. But mostly my mind. [Continues to squint, endlessly.]