Redskins 17, Panthers 13
Steve Smith scored a touchdown.
What else from this game could you possibly care about?
Vikings 31, Cardinals 26
Arizona's J.J. Arrington returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown, prompting commentator Matt Vasgersian to declare the score "just what the Cardinals need"—indicating both that Dennis Green's squad would play better with a lead, and that Vasgersian has never before watched the Arizona Cardinals play
Despite the 99-yard kickoff return touchdown, a 99-yard fumble return touchdown, and 405 yards of passing from rookie Matt Leinart, the Cardinals lost the game, in part because they only ran the ball six times. "They say a solid running game is the key to a championship caliber team," noted Green before trailing off about gravy, shouting at a random reporter about the "alleged moon landing" and gnawing on the corner of his podium. Minnesota bounced back after a dreary four game losing streak, but since it was against Arizona, we'll pass on any declarative statements about the team's status until next week.
Patriots 17, Bears 13
Twenty-one years ago, these two teams met in a lopsided Super Bowl. But since New England and Chicago play each other so rarely, especially when both teams are division leaders and almost certainly playoff bound, the match up can't help but evoke memories of Walter Payton, Refrigerator Perry, Mike Singletary, Jim McMahon, and... some other guys who also played for the 1985 Patriots.
Unfortunately, the focus of the game quickly became the turnovers: the two teams combined to cough up the ball nine times, causing speculation among announcers Joe Buck and Troy Aikman as to whether Rex Grossman has it in him to be one of the NFL's elite quarterbacks. This in turn led everyone watching Fox's coverage to wonder if Joe Buck and Troy Aikman are retarded.
In other news, Patriots running back Kevin Faulk set a team record for receptions by a running back when he caught his 262nd career pass, reminding fans everywhere that Kevin Faulk is, in fact, still playing in the NFL.
Rams 20, 49ers 17
Marc Bulger was playing his best on the Rams' game-winning drive. The troubled defense dug deep for a crucial stop in a divisional clash that put St. Louis on top of Sn Francisco for second place in the NFC West.
Since both teams are 5-6, though, it probably doesn't matter who
has the tie-breaker, since neither will be printing playoff tickets. "Looking on the bright side," pointed out 49ers head coach Mike Nolan, that loss could mean the difference between the 12th pick in next year's draft and the 16th pick. Can I get a 'Whoooooa, Niners!'?"
Titans 24, Giants 21
This week, Tiki Barber was widely criticized for calling out his head coach, Tom Coughlin, after New York's embarrassing defeat in Jacksonville. This is the fourth time in the last year that Barber or teammate Jeremy Shockey has openly questioned Coughlin's ability to coach. In each case, critics of the players say things like, "This should be handled behind closed doors" or "This isn't proper protocol for a complaint like this to be registered."
But what do they never say? "Tiki Barber is wrong. Tom Coughlin is a really good coach who doesn't look at all like a four year old trying to figure out how to glue the pieces of a broken cookie jar back together before his mom comes into the kitchen whenever the Giants' opponents swing momentum in their favor."
On that note, the Giants took a 21-0 lead into the final ten minutes of Sunday's game against a rebuilding team with a "project rookie" at quarterback and lost 24-21.
Chargers 21, Raiders 14
With LaDainian Tomlinson scoring so many touchdowns lately, the Chargers have made an effort to spread the wealth. Tight end Antonio Gates scored his first touchdown in five weeks, but it came on a pass from Tomlinson.
"It's uncanny really," coach Marty Schottenheimer smiled, "it's like he can't not
score touchdowns. In the second quarter, LaDainian slipped on a banana peel someone had carelessly left lying near the trainer's table. In an attempt to regain his balance, he stumbled into across the goal line with the ball in his hands."
"Frankly, I'm a little creeped out myself," Tomlinson admitted. "In the fourth quarter, I figured I was being a little selfish and went out of my way not to score any touchdowns. But this Jehovah's Witness approached me on the sideline to offer me a Watchtower. In my efforts to avoid him, I tried to hide behind the Raiders' safeties and wound up in the end zone. I don't even know how
that ball got in my hands."
Colts 45, Eagles 21
Remember when you took a flier on Joseph Addai late in your fantasy draft and you've been carrying him all year just hoping Tony Dungy would finally bench Dominic Rhodes and give the rookie a shot? Did you notice how lately Addai's put up halfway decent numbers the last few weeks, getting close to cracking 100 yards and scoring a few touchdowns here and there? You know how you were thinking about starting him one of these weeks?
Well, you missed your shot. Addai rushed for 171 yards and four touchdowns, giving you more than enough points to beat your opponent if only you'd started him instead of Corey Dillon, you idiot.
Oh, and don't even think about starting him next week, bandwagon jumper. He'll get ten carries for 35 yards and a fumble and you'll lose and miss the playoffs. Told
you you missed your shot. (Incidentally, the next time you purchase multiple 40-ounce bottles of Colt 45 malt liquor, please note the plural form of the word would properly be "Colts 45.")
____Jake Bell is a former NBC sportscaster and head writer for Ye Olde Comick Booke Blogge.
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