Controlling the quality of life. That's what she said.
This week was an interesting one in the NFL. Six teams were on their bye week, meaning there were three less games than usual. I found this particularly odd when I watched a game with my football buddy for the first time at a sports bar. We went to the local SmokeEaters to catch the Jets at Patriots game since my friend’s favorite team is the Patriots (who would have thought I was friends with a Patriot-faithful, eh?). As soon as we walked in the restaurant, about ten huge, flat screen HD televisions stared straight at us – yeah, not distracting or intimidating at all. It probably was a blessing in disguise that only two afternoon games were scheduled (less distractions). Of course being the Bay Area, the sound to the Raiders game was blasted throughout, but half of the screen were still tuned in to the Patriots, so I still got to see a silent-film version of the Brady-led offense getting completely shut down (well, almost completely…). Anyhow, on to this week’s countdown, which in contrast to last week’s is rather bland. (I’m totally not biased just because Broncos were on bye *sarcasm*.)
10. I still have no clue why, but Gangnam style is more popular than ever especially in the NFL. Of course it’s only fitting that it ends with Victor Cruz’s salsa, although I think Von Miller’s collection of sack dances would have been even more fitting – simply my completely bias opinion.
9. In case you haven’t seen this commercial repeatedly aired on tv, here is Drew Brees attempting to dance n’ sing. He shouldn’t quit his day job, but I must say, not so bad compared to One Direction. I just realized, Drew Brees is in a lot of commercials. Well, better seeing him than Tom Brady, although this was funny (mostly because of the people making fun of him).
8. Emmanuel Sanders of the Pittsburgh Steelers faked a leg cramp so the Steelers wouldn’t have burn a timeout as the play clock wound down. Classic Steelers. Smooth, very smooth…I hope it was worth a soon-to-be fine.
7. Well that Seattle at San Francisco game was very…expected. As expected, this was a very (very) defensively oriented game. Physical defenses plus struggling offenses equal a low-scoring game void of flashy highlights. Don’t get me wrong, it was nonetheless an entertaining game as I was yelling at the television for Seahawk receivers to stop dropping Russel Wilson’s perfectly-thrown balls (sorry Bay Area fans). However, it does become a bit of a drag when both offenses begin to suck pathetically by the fourth quarter. Kudos to Marshawn Lynch n’ especially Frank Gore for giving fans something to watch, but these offense need to help out their defenses, particularly SF’s. I know they won, but not much credit due to their passing game, although ironically that’s how the sole touchdown of the game was scored. Alex Smith needs to clean up his act because in my opinion, Russel Wilson outplayed him. I found that for much of the game Wilson put the ball where it needed to be, but his receivers just couldn’t get the job done. Yes, the rookie needs to improve on decision-making n’ playing situational football, but that’s expected. I still expect Niners to be a favorite heading into Arizona, but boy to they have a lot of work to before Monday.
6. This week Rams are taking on the Patriots in London…England. I still feel that these London games are very random and actually put teams at a disadvantage, particularly west coast teams due the extreme time difference. Anyhow, the Rams kicker n’ punter seem to be enjoying themselves, kicking soccer balls from the weirdest places…
5. The high-scoring Buccs/Saints game provided a very entertaining highlight reel, but two plays stand out the most to me. Vincent Jackson’s catch-n-run looks like a home run to the endzone, but of course it wouldn’t be a divisional game if there weren’t some drama. We then have Joseph Morgan, determined to get the ball in the endzone, breaks a tackle n’ ducks under a Buccs defender to get the touchdown. Honorary mention: the play that sealed the Buccs’ fate.
4. So…how about those Jets? I had the pleasure of sitting next to my friend, the crazy Patriots fan during this game. Probably not the best game to watch with my buddy considering the Jets actually kept up with the Pats stride for stride. Of course, it was not void of Sanchez-brain-lapse moments. There’s the interception right on cue, the only surprise being the long drive leading up to it. There’s the strip sack that ended the game, but the most classic Sanchez play is kicking a ground ball out of the Pats’ endzone resulting in a Patriots safety. Ironically enough, that was probably the smartest play Sanchez made, considering there was a 300-plus pounds Vince Wilfork running at him n’ the Patriots were unable to recover the ball for a touchdown. I must give credit where credit it due though, Nick Folk had one heck of a kicking game for the Jets especially when the offense couldn’t convert touchdowns. I’m also surprised at how un-circus-like the Jets handled the Tebow situation on Sunday, albeit Sanchez didn’t completely suck (he actually outplayed Brady statistically).
3. The game of the week was no doubt Redskins versus Giants. There were many other close games, but these two teams have consistently proven themselves to always be contenders thus far making this game all that more entertaining. RG3 played lights out, making plays that seemed to be over the second the ball was snapped as the Giants D played as well as expected. Classic RG3 happened when he scrambled out as the pocket collapsed n’ somehow found his footing to throw for a first down. Then again on the other side you have Mr Clutch, my man Eli Manning who chucked a game-winning touchdown to Victor Cruz. What an intense game. What wonderful football.
2. The last two points of this countdown are actually not NFL-related as I wish to express my Bay Area pride (although I don’t have much when it comes to sports, at least not with football where don’t exactly root for either team…). Aside from football, October brings about an interesting time for baseball. Although I’m not in any way a baseball fan, this season has brought upon some interesting storylines – mostly improbable ones for the two Bay Area teams. While the A’s only last through the first series, they defied all non-believers n’ pushed for a game 5. The Giants, doing the same in their first series have now pushed for a Game 7 in their current series for a berth to the World Series. The best part is that they get to (hopefully) earn that berth right here at home, in the Bay.
1. Last but not least, the San Jose Earthquakes. Due to Kansas City’s draw prior to the Earthquakes’ last two games, the Quakes clinched the Supporters Shield as well as home-field advantage throughout the race to the MLS Cup under the new playoff structure. Yes, the clinching of the Shield happened while they were sitting on their behinds, but they’ve have no shortage of dramatic n’ fairytale finishes to games this season. I’ve viewed them as the 2011 Broncos of MLS – they really like to give fans heart attacks by scoring near the end of games. This past Sunday was such a monumental day for San Jose because after many years of fighting for its own soccer-specific stadium (which I believe was part of the reason for the team’s departure to Houston in the mid-2000’s), they finally held a groundbreaking ceremony at its new stadium site, which had world-recording breaking attendance. This eventful morning was followed by a heated rivalry game against LA Galaxy in this season’ third installment of California Classico. It would have been able to sweep the SoCal team, but a 2-2 draw helped the Quakes remain undefeated at Buck Shaw for…too many games I can’t count. Congratulations to the Earthquakes, n’ best of luck in the playoffs!