Monthly Archives: September 2009

Edition 11 “The Old Stay Young”

Ray Lewis once again proved ageless coming up with the big play to help the Ravens solidify a big victory over the San Diego Chargers and put their stake on first place in the AFC North.

The Ravens gave up an eye opening 436 passing yards and 474 total yards. Though very uncharacteristic of the normally suffocating defensive efforts Ravens fans have become accustomed to, their fearless leader still came up with the big play when it was needed. Ray Lewis has maybe lost a step over the years from the prime of his career in the early 2000’s, but he has not lost anything mentally. He read Philip Rivers snap count like a book and shot the whole.
Ray Lewis, possibly the greatest linebacker of all time still is coming up with big plays at the dinosaur age of 34! Ray was very modest after the play, but plays like this are a testament to hard work over the entire course of a career on the field, and in the film study room. Though he did not make the best decisions off the field early in his career, his football decisions have been perfect. Lewis is defying logic in continuing to will a team to big victories.
Do not sleep on this Raven’s team. Flacco has the swagger of a winner and the offense is for once healthy (for once Todd Heap is at full strength). They now have an early one game lead over the hated Steelers and are looking to win the AFC North outright this year.
The AFC North will be an extremely competitive division this year and the old man will definitely have his say on the outcome.
Stay tuned for Edition 12 coming soon.
-Kraze

Edition 10 “An Atypical Day in Who Dey Nation”

The Bengals pulled out a big W today at the sacred grounds of Lambeau Field over a Packers team that appears to be in the middle of the pack. The Bengals at 1-1 are a team with many question marks and hopefully a good few of these questions will be answered in a positive fashion next week against the hated rival Pittsburgh Steelers next Sunday.

The Bengals came out on fire offensively in the first quarter and scored with the utmost ease. Following the score the Packers came right back with a rebuttal in the form of a Donald Driver touchdown. This is basically how the game went all day ending in a victory for the visiting Bengals 31-24.

This game was an extremely unique game. In the first half, Carson Palmer showed flashes of 05, and then at times he showed flashes of a timid high school quarterback. He made one of the oldest defensive backs in the League, Charles Woodson, the Heisman Trophy Winner in 1997 look like a Hall of Famer at times. On the pick 6 in the 2nd quarter, I wanted to pull my hair out. This feeling occurs at least once on any Sunday afternoon for a Bengals fan.

In this game, all 3 of our top receivers caught touchdown passes. Carson’s first TD passes since October 5th of 08. Possibly the weirdest occurrence of the game was the lack of celebration by Chris Henry after scoring the TD. Could he be maturing before our eyes and starting to realize what it is like to have been there before? Chad certainly hasn’t, though his celebrations are always entertaining.

The Bengals also at times exhibited a great mix of pass and run with Cedric Benson having a career day. Even with all of these great things happening on the offensive side of the ball and the defense staking out in Aaron Rodgers backfield (Antwan Odom had 5 sacks), the Packers still had a shot in the end to win it.

The Bengals played their hearts out today and even though it was not pretty with 13 penalties, they got the win on the road. The question marks will continue into next week against the defending Super Bowl Champs and I will continue to live the life of a Bengals fan, never knowing what is coming next. On this particular day though, the Bengals come home as winners.

Stay tuned for Edition 11 coming soon.

-Kraze

Edition 9 “Gator Chomp”

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the chomping Florida Gators make me sick. They are a heck of a team with an outstanding coach..but if you are not a Gators fan, you have to be tired of hearing about them. Their game this weekend against a subpar Tennessee team has turned into the marquee game of the weekend.

This is a laughable matter. A Tennessee team that just lost to a mediocre at best UCLA team comes into the Swamp prepared to get Gator chomped and this is the marquee game of the weekend? Now I am not trying to take away from this once storied rivalry back in the Philip Fulmer and Steve Spurrier days, but now, this game is a joke.

Tennessee will be lucky to come within 30 points of the Gators and all the fuss is over a couple of publicity stunts that the new Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin made to bring some attention to the declining program. I am not excited to here Tim Tebows talk after the butt whooping how this was just another game on the road to hopefully another SEC Title.

Lane Kiffin and the Vols will get stuck in the mud of the swamp and get whooped all the way back to Rocky Top. Maybe Lane Kiffin will turn this program around over the next few years, but these are Fulmer’s players and they are vastly overmatched.

Hopefully the Tigers of Baton Rouge can start to hit stride and upset the Gators on October 10th..

Stay tuned for Edition 10 coming soon.

-Kraze

Edition 8 “Hurricanes in Florida”

Well the Miami Hurricanes looked like a team ready to take on all challengers tonight. They put on a dominating performance over a solid Georgia Tech team and made a statement to the rest of the ACC and the country. Are the Hurricanes back?

It appears that way. With a fantastic quarterback in Jacory Harris, and a defense full of hard hitters, this team seems to be developing a swagger of the old Canes!! Most people originally did not think that the Hurricanes would make it through the trap of the first 4 games on their schedule. Next they take on a very tough Virginia Tech team followed by the always dangerous Oklahoma Sooners. This team appears ready to take on all opponents. They have beaten 2 solid ranked opponents in front of national audiences and look to be developing the confidence of a top 15 team in the country.

In my eyes, this is a great thing. Who doesn’t want Florida to start being up for grabs again on which school is College Football king? The days when it was debatable who the top team in the state would be. The days of 3 powerhouses in the state; Florida State, Florida, and Miami.

I am frankly beginning to become nauseated in hearing about Florida and the saint Tim Tebow. Urban Meyer has done a fantastic job, but the state of Florida needs to become competitive again. Miami appears ready to become competitive again. Though this year Florida has appeared to be all but invincable against the Junior Varsity opponents they have played thus far, Miami looks to be setting the tone heading into the next couple of years. Tim Tebow can’t stay in college forever. Sorry Gator fans.

Tim Tebow, after leading the Gators to another BCS game this year will become a decent tight end in the NFL or a backup quarterback. This in no way will take away from his phenomenal college career.

Jacory Harris has been quoted as saying that “The Miami offense cannot be stopped.” It appears that way thus far. Florida, get ready for a changing of the guard..

Stay tuned for Edition 9

-Kraze

Edition 7 “October Nears”

The baseball season is beginning to come to a close with a mere 30 to 35 games left, and is as usual, being vastly overshadowed by the NFL and College Football. One thing is almost always for certain. The Yankees and Red Sox will be going at it come October! Minus last year, when the Yankees missed the playoffs for the first time since 1993, the Yankees and Red Sox have really reignited their once unheralded rivalry to the top of the sporting nation again.

This year appears to be no different as both teams have all but solidified their playoff berths. The Yankees have gotten the job done this year by scoring the most runs in the American League, while the Red Sox, still a heavy run producing team have given up the second least runs in the AL. Many people say, “Of course the Yankees and Red Sox are going to be playing in October, they have the most money.” Though they do both have very high player salaries, they definitely have brought a great level of consistency to the game. Come October, as much as most people appear to hate these teams, it is what they really want.

Even if you live in Chicago, other than your Cubs or White Sox, you want to see the Yankees take on the Red Sox at Fenway. It is the ultimate matchup in sports. It’s history and legacy are unparalleled. Both of these franchise have developed such a hatred for each other, that the entire country has jumped on the bandwagon. In my eyes it is the OSU Michigan Rivalry times 10. It is the North Carolina Duke rivalry times 100. There is no question in my mind that this rivalry encapsulates more of the country than any other rivalry even though it is 2 teams from very similar geographical areas.

What would October be without the boys in the Pinstripes flexing their muscles and the Red Sox showing off their shaggy facial hair looks?

The Yankees have not won a series since 2000, and may not win this year, but would you want the playoffs to be any other way? If your specific team that you are a die hard for is not playing in the playoffs, who would you rather see go head to head than the Yankees and the Red Sox?

So my question to you for today, “Is the Yankees vs Red Sox the best rivalry in sports, and if not what is?

Stay tuned for Edition 8 of the Blog coming soon.

-Kraze

Edition 6 “The Life of a God”

For those of you who were unable to tune in to Monday Night Football last evening, Tom Brady and the Patriots pulled off another miraculous one point victory. In a game that the Bills appeared to have won, Tom Brady ripped the Bills heart out and stole the victory from TO and Trent Edwards. The Patriots came back from a seemingly insurmountable deficit in the last few minutes of the ball game down by 11 with 2 minutes and 6 seconds left.

Now many would say that the Bills returner, Leodis McKelvin, should of just taken a knee in the end zone and let the offense run out the clock. Maybe this is why the Bills had already lost 11 in a row to the Pats going into Monday Night?

But anyways, back to the topic at hand. Brady, who was outperformed for much of the evening by the Bills mediocre QB Trent Edwards, still escaped with a W in his debut coming off of major knee surgery. Being a Cincinnati guy, I want to now take some time to compare the Pats play caller Tom Brady with the Bengals QB Carson Palmer, and explain the life of bliss that Tom Brady has.

Tom Brady was a little known product coming out of high school and something about his game tapes caught the eye of Michigan where he was offered a scholarship. Carson Palmer was an extremely touted prep star who was no secret to any school. In the end he decided to stay in California and attend USC. Brady sat on the bench until his junior year, even spending time as the 7th QB on the depth chart, while Palmer began starting football games midway through his freshman year. Brady was a 6th round draft pick, while Palmer was a highly touted first rounder.

Brady is the winner of 3 Super Bowls and consistently makes the playoffs each and every year while Palmer has made one playoff appearance. In Palmer’s lone appearance, he suffered a major knee injury on the first offensive play of the game.

This comparison goes to show you that though Palmer appeared to possess all the gifts of a Brady and more, Brady has lived the blessed career. Brady looks to be ready to go after coming back from a major knee injury. Palmer has still never been even a shell of his former self even 3 years later.

In my eyes the major difference between the two was shown this weekend. Both led key, seemingly game winning drives in the final 2 minutes of their games. The only difference; Brady won, while Palmer lost. Is it really fair to Palmer?

Also, Brady is the face of the league at this time, with all of the money and fame in the world. Not to mention a super model wife. Brady has it all and truly has the life of a god. Palmer, though a fantastic player, has it all except the winning nature. I do not blame Palmer for this, but he is definitely on the short end of the stick.

This comparison shows that maybe it is better to bloom late and not be as sought after of a draft pick. Then you may have a chance to get taken by a franchise committed to winning. Rather than blooming on time or even early as Palmer did, and getting taken very highly in the draft by a franchise that seems to be unable to shake the cloud of losing that resides over it.

In the meantime, Brady and Palmer will each continue to make the big bucks and live the dream of quarterbacking in the NFL. The only difference is, Brady will continue to win ball games and Super Bowls, while with Palmer, he will win some, and lose some.

Brady truly does have “The life of a God.”

Tom Brady should of taken a page out of Derek Jeter’s book though and held off on marriage..

-Kraze

Edition 5 “The Wanted Man”

The US Open concluded this evening with a very unfamiliar face atop the championship podium. The great Roger Federer was defeated by the little known, gutsy 20 year old Juan Martin Del Potro. Del Potro devastated the great champion’s quest for yet another historic record of a 6th US Open title and his 16th Major Championship. Time and time again Del Potro pulled out big forehand after big forehand to defeat Federer. Del Potro seemed to have ice in his veins and showed no fear.

Federer, as always, being the great champion he is, was extremely gracious in defeat and gave credit where credit was due. Many people do not understand the complete dominance of Roger Federer and why he is the “Most Wanted Man” in sports. Federer had won 40 straight matches in Flushing Meadows entering today, which was a record for the US Open. He also has made it to 17 of the past 18 Grand Slam Finals. That means that he has made all but one of the major finals in the past 4 and a half years. Talk about a model of consistency. Has Tiger been in contention in every major he has played in lately? I seem to remember him missing the cut recently.

Unfortunately, on this day, as he went for US Open title number 6, he appeared flustered at times and had a meager 13 aces, with an astonishing 11 double faults. It is widely uncharacteristic to see Roger Federer hit even 4 or 5 double faults in a match. In addition, Roger had 58 unforced errors to his 56 winners. Today was not to be and Del Potro came with his A game.

Federer goes up against hungry opponents in each and every match he plays. No matter who this great champion plays, the person on the other end of the court realizes that by winning on the particular day he plays Federer, it will be the greatest victory of his career. For Federer, if he wins, he was supposed to win, when he loses, its an upset of cataclysmic proportions (except against Nadal on clay).

Federer seems to relish in this wanted role, but it definitely makes things more difficult for him. He always gets his opponents best match and still ends up victorious nearly every time. Hats off to Roger Federer for staying on top with the bullet on his back for nearly 6 years now. This man is far from finished and has a couple of of more great years in him.

Roger will continue to be “The Most Wanted Man” in sports, even with the tough loss in today’s final.

My question for you is could you deal with being “The Most Wanted Man?”

Stay tuned for blog edition 6 coming soon.

-Kraze