Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Hey, I Was Kinda Right About These

Hell yeah. We should see if Andrew Jackson will play cornerback for us. So what if he's dead? You can't keep a good man down. Although it is possible that he would only really get up for games against the Redskins.

For the most part, I think my predictions this week were actually pretty damn good. Either I am starting to get a pretty good feel for this team or I was just absurdly lucky. Yeah, I know, I know, it's obvious which of those is the real reason why I can't be laughed at this week - well, not as much anyway.


WHAT I SAID: Daunte Culpepper starts and puts up decent numbers - at least on the surface. He goes 23-39 for 261 yards and two touchdowns. He also throws 3 picks, including a back breaker late in the third that is returned for a touchdown. How's that for specific?

WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED: Culpepper was 23-37 for 282 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He was responsible for a couple of back breakers - the hilarious fumble, pick up the ball, throw an interception sequence and the tragic "hey there's a blitzer coming straight for me so I'll just hold onto the ball here and . . . whoops" sequence at the end of the game.

Okay, man that is kind of freaky. I was dead on about the completions, and almost dead on with the number of attempts. I was close about the yardage and although the touchdowns and interceptions were a little off, I feel like I called this one pretty perfectly. Culpepper had nice surface numbers, but anyone who watched the game and has a functioning brain stem(which unfortunately, doesn't seem to include a small chunk of the Lions fan base)knows that Culpepper's mistakes were cripplers that left the Lions with their heads hung low, wondering how they could have possibly come so close to knocking off the defending champions only to see their dreams lying battered and bruised, sacked to death by Dick LeBeau and his horde of angry Huns.

I am neither particularly happy nor sad that I called this one right. It is what it is, Culpepper is Culpepper and anyone who has paid attention to his career could have seen a game like this coming. What did it prove? Culpepper is a half-decent backup who could probably be successful against the Rams of the world but who is probably going to self combust at the worst possible time against any team with a functioning defense. With Culpepper it's all "Hey that was a nice play", "Alright, now we got something going", "Hey, maybe Culpepper really does get it now", "Whoops, never mind." It's the sequence that has governed his whole career. Someone should find a mathematical formula so that we can figure out exactly when these fuckups are going to happen. "Nah, man, he'll be fine this play, you've got to solve for X. You do that and you'll see that his pants are going to fall down and he will throw the ball backwards on the next play."


WHAT I SAID: Kevin Smith runs for 70 yards on 20 carries. He fails to score and after the game he and Ernie Sims are busted in a morgue trying to steal shoulder parts from cadavers. They both escape and leave Sims' monkey to take the fall. The poor guy becomes a minor celebrity and is hustled out of the country into Windsor while out on bail. He receives a full pardon from President Obama and returns a conquering hero. At least until he shits in his hand and throws it at foreign dignitaries during a state dinner in his honor.

WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED: Smith ran for 53 yards on 20 carries. He also failed to score. I am a little freaked out by how close I have come with these first two predictions. I was slightly off on the yardage, but I nailed the number of carries exactly and I feel as if I completely nailed this prediction in spirit. The Lions tried to run with Smith with little success. As for what happened afterward, well, perhaps that is a story that just hasn't come out yet, although I have heard rumors that Sims' monkey is currently running from federal marshals, hiding out in safe houses run by PETA and claiming that a one armed orangutan is the real culprit. We can only hope this works out for the best.


WHAT I SAID: Calvin Johnson catches 6 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown. After the game he quotes Shakespeare, sighing and saying "Lord, what fools these mortals be." He then floats up towards heaven on the wings of angels.

Awww, damn it all. St. Calvin only caught 1 pass for 2 yards, but there are extenuating circumstances here. He tweaked his knee early in the first quarter and spent the rest of the game on the sideline, generally looking miserable that he couldn't be in there. Saying I was wrong here would be complete bullshit and how dare you for thinking it. Still, I wasn't right, and I guess that is the way of things sometimes, neither right nor wrong, doomed to hang out unfulfilled in some fucked up limbo, weeping bitter tears and wondering if there will ever be any finality to any of this nonsense.

Still, we can only assume that St. Calvin's little knee issue has given him some time to catch up on his Shakespeare and perhaps he will bust out some raw ass quotes from Henry V or something next week. Again, we can only hope.


WHAT I SAID: Ben Roethlisberger throws for 250 yards and 3 touchdowns. He is seen after the game laughing on the sideline with the Undertaker of WWE fame, who tombstone piledrives each member of the Lions defense after the game. The fans at Ford Field cheer him on.

WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED: Roethlisberger was 23-30 for 277 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also threw a pick six to William James, so I guess he was responsible for four touchdowns. Again, it is freaky as hell how close I am coming on some of these numbers. I figured Roethlisberger would have a relatively easy day that could have been much worse for the Lions, and that's pretty much what happened. He was able to toss the ball around against Detroit's shitty secondary pretty much all day and it is kind of surprising that his numbers weren't even better. After the game, Roethlisberger said he wasn't particularly happy with his performance and I sort of see where he was coming from. He was good but he wasn't great. Against a better team, the day might not have gone so well, but alas, the Lions are not that team.

Sadly, Roethlisberger did not pal around with the Undertaker after the game. It seems that in my vision of the future I thought it was the Undertaker, when in reality it was the grim reaper dragging Daunte Culpepper's corpse off of the field following the cascade of sacks at the end. My mistake. I turned the TV off before I could see if he gave him a tombstone piledriver but we will just assume that it happened and move on.


WHAT I SAID: The Steelers actually struggle to run the ball. Mendenhall manages a few bursts here and there, but the Lions again mostly contain the opponent's best back. After the game, Gunther Cunningham hits the Undertaker with a steel chair. The Undertaker shrugs it off and choke slams him while the camera fades to black. In the studio, the analysts are stunned and speechless, and quickly turn the discussion towards the new film project starring Ford the Elder and Al Davis. Dan Marino calls it the feel good hit of next summer. Shannon Sharpe calls him an idiot and then gallops away. Boomer Esiason calls them both damn fools, looks disgusted and makes a crack at Marino's expense that Marino tries gamely to laugh off. The sexual tension between the two is extraordinary and it makes James Brown uncomfortable. He can be seen loosening his tie while Bill Cowher juts his jaw out and daydreams about Dan Snyder giving him bags full of money to coach the Redskins. It is a debacle that causes CBS to rethink their team, and fans are horrified when, a week later, Matt Millen is the primary analyst who narrates every highlight while his co-host, Wayne Fontes, slurps spaghetti in the background. CBS is taken off the air the following week and President Obama vows "Never again." Ernie Sims' monkey is named the new chairman of the FCC and a golden age of quality broadcasting ensues.

WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED: Mendenhall ran for 77 yards on 15 carries and added a touchdown. Again, I feel like I did a pretty good job calling this one. The Steelers never really established a rhythm on the ground. There was never a point where it felt like they were just cramming the ball down the Lions throats and, really, much of Mendenhall's yardage came on a few bursts here and there. It felt sort of similar to the job they did on Adrian Peterson a few weeks ago. I am actually feeling pretty good about the Lions run defense. One big caveat: it's possible that teams aren't even bothering to establish the run because they know they can just throw all over the Lions all day long. Still, it is a huge step up from last year when teams not only threw all over the Lions all day long, but ran all over them too. Oh God, the flashbacks are starting, the hideous flashbacks. Quick, someone get a baseball bat, a package of triple A batteries and a box full of whippets. Don't ask what they are for, just go, now, before it's too late!

I didn't stick around to see the post game, but I will assume that all of the above did indeed happen. I still haven't heard anything about Sims' monkey being named chairman of the FCC but these things take time, and besides, there is that whole mess with Tommy Lee Jones chasing him across the country that needs to be resolved before any of that can happen. Oh well, vaya con dios, monkey. Vaya con dios.

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