Are the good NFL teams even good?

Remember in 2006 when Denny Green went all Linda Blair during his infamous, “Crown their asses!” post-game press conference? While one of the more unintentionally comedic moments in sports history, Denny, in his lunacy, actually had a pretty valid complaint. See, the Bears (the Cardinals opponent that night) spent much of the season being fellated by the media as Super Bowl favorites. So when the Cardinals (Who finished with a very Cardinals-like 5-11 record that season) nearly pulled what many thought would have been a huge upset, Denny didn’t respond all too kindly to the notion that, “Whoa! Your super shitty team almost beat a really good team!” Green’s point for all intents and purposes, was that hey, Any Given Sunday  — only delivered in a way that would come from someone with rabies.

What seemed to irk Green the most though wasn’t that his team was essentially being given a participation trophy like some winless little league team. But rather, that so much hoopla was being made of just a regular season affair, at a point in the schedule where few, if any, conclusions can (or should) be drawn from one little game. After all, based on the last two Super Bowl winners, we know the regular season means jack shit anyway.

But that’s just the thing that’s made this season so crazy to watch. Because what happened in that game in 2006, is happening this year EVERY SINGLE WEEK. I can’t remember another NFL season in recent history that swung so drastically in (or out of) favor from one team to the next on a weekly basis. Take this past Sunday Night Football game for example. In the span of just three hours, we went from this:

 To this:

So despite identical records, the Packers and Giants are now heading in completely opposite directions after just one game. Alrighty then. So this begs the question – who’s actually good? It’s a fun question to debate because this season might have a more glaring lack of a dominant team than any we’ve seen in awhile. Conventional wisdom tells us to look at the teams with the best records to get a picture of who will likely be playing in late January and February. But hell, are the division leaders even that good? You could easily make a case for or against any of them:

New York Giants

The case for:

  • The most clutch QB in the game
  • Team plays their best in big games
  • Justin Tuck’s facemask makes him look like Scorpion from Mortal Kombat:

The case against:

  • Routinely take the month of November off
  • Lost against Andy Reid and Marvin Lewis-coached teams in the same season
  • Eli Manning may actually be a high school cheerleader

_______________________________________________________

Chicago Bears

The case for:

 The case against:

  • That same WR is always one shanking from being out football
  • Jay Cutler throwing into quintuple coverage
  • Running in sand would be easier than Soldier Field turf

_______________________________________________________

 San Francisco 49’ers

The case for:

  • Patrick Willis’ harrowing arms
  • A QB with tattoos is pretty cool
  • Well-balanced with very few weaknesses on either side of the ball

The case against:

  • Alex Smith is definitely going to plant blow in Colin Kaepernick’s locker
  • Not a good track record for teams switching QB’s midseason
  • If you woke up tomorrow and read the headline, ‘Jim Harbaugh arrested for assault’ you wouldn’t be surprised

_______________________________________________________

Atlanta Falcons

The case for:

  • Best record in football*
  • Best 1-2 combination of wide receivers in the league
  • Still has one of the top 10 tight ends in football despite being 57 years-old

 The case against:

  • *Lead the league in wins-pulled-out-of-their-ass
  • Michael Turner looks like an offensive lineman
  • Still really awkward watching Arthur Blank’s offbeat head nod

_______________________________________________________

Denver Broncos

The case for:

  • Manning’s glowy red forehead mark gives him superpowers
  • Elway has Emperor Palpatine-like influence
  •  Von Miller’s head shot

The case against:

  • Curse of Tebow?
  • Cupcake schedule since Week 5
  • Constant threat of Manning being decapitated

_______________________________________________________

New England Patriots

The case for:

  • Ruthless, “We’re up 35 and throwing it” philosophy
  • Mad scientist Head Coach
  • For the first time since Corey Dillon (hahaha) they have a solid running game

The case against:

  • Good chance injured Gronk is passed out in a club right now
  • Tom Brady is endorsing Uggs
  • They’re fucking cheaters

_______________________________________________________

Houston Texans

The case for:

  • Most complete team in the NFL
  • JJ Watt might actually be The Terminator
  • Andre Johnson is healthy for the first time since birth

The case against:

  • Gary Kubiak
  • The worst luck of any team in football
  • Gary Kubiak

 _______________________________________________________

Baltimore Ravens

The case for:

  • On pace to be the first team that lucks into a Super Bowl (they’re the anti-Texans)
  • Ray Rice is a top-3 running back
  • Ray Lewis likely has been working on lots of motivational speeches while injured

 The case against:

  • Joe Flacco has become more pouty than Jay Cutler
  • Ed Reed may disintegrate making a tackle
  • Needed a play called “Diddle Diddle Ray Rice Up The Middle” to beat a team coached by Norv Turner
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