Blog Entry

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Posted on: October 4, 2011 12:07 pm
I admit it. I was wrong. I thought St. Louis was nothing more than an overnight guest at the Lucky Hotel, home to those waiting on Stanford's Andrew Luck. Instead, it looks as if the Rams are here to stay. I watched them flattened by Washington last weekend, and two things struck me: 1) How bad their pass protection is, and 2) how well their wide receivers perform ... as volleyball players. Geez, I haven't seen that many rebounds since Chamberlain pulled down 55 vs. the Celtics.

Anyway, I look at the Rams' next three games, and it's clear they're more than overnight guests. Let's see, at New Orleans, at Green Bay and home to Dallas? Better put them down for the monthly rate.

Before we move on, let me congratulate Minnesota on reaching the season's one-quarter pole as the NFL's Luckiest Loser. The Vikings made it there with a difficult loss to Kansas City -- a club that never knew a lead until the Vikings showed up. Nice going, guys, and a big round of applause for the great state of Missouri, too. It has two NFL teams, and both are in the Bottom Five. The Show-Me State just did.

5. Kansas City. OK, so the Chiefs broke through. Great. But all is not lost. There is plenty of time to resume a losing streak -- starting this weekend in Indianapolis. Matt Cassel delivered his strongest performance of the season and, afterward, said it had something to do with that  heated sideline exchange he had with coach Todd Haley. I can only imagine what they were saying. "What in the name of Todd Blackledge are you trying to do? Blow the No. 1 pick?" "But, coach, I want to keep my job!" Or maybe not. Anyway, Kansas City might be floundering, but look at it like this, Chiefs' fans: You have the same record as Philadelphia, and it cost a lot less money to get there.

Next loss: Indianapolis. Welcome to the Andrew Luck Bowl, Part Deux, where the winless Colts are actually favored by 2-1/2. That says more about the Chiefs than I ever could.

4. Indianapolis. The more I see of Curtis Painter the smarter Reggie Wayne gets. OK, so Painter's not Peyton Manning. He might not even be Kerry Collins. But he doesn't look bad -- provided, of course, someone introduces him to a barber. Unfortunately, the same can't be said of his teammates. They play just well enough to lose, and that's what happens to bad teams. They find ways to lose. Indianapolis, of course, has an excuse, and if you didn't think Peyton Manning was underpaid before maybe you do now. I mean, one guy isn't supposed to make that much of a difference in football. This one guy does.

Next loss: Kansas City. Maybe not. The Colts are favored. If they win, I'm picking up breakfast at Shapiro's Monday.

3. Miami. I see where Steven Ross says Tony Sparano is "the right coach" for the Dolphins and that the players believe in him. Too bad the owner doesn't. He's the guy who flew across country in January to woo Jim Harbaugh, then at Stanford,  while "the right coach" was on the job back in Miami.  Now he delivers the dreaded vote of confidence to a guy who lost 11 of his last 12 at home, and hasta la vista, Tony. Ross just confirmed you're toast. The only question is: When? My guess: As soon as Ross finds someone as appealing to him as Harbaugh. Then, "the right coach" becomes the ex-coach.

Next loss: New York Jets.
Miami catches two breaks: 1) It meets these guys after they complete a brutal three-week road trip ih New England, and 2) it escapes the homefield disadvantage. That's right, the game's in New Jersey, and it's on Monday Night, a rare chance for the the country to discover why Dolphins aren't really fish at all; they're dead bait.

2. St. Louis.  
A month ago I thought the Rams were the best team in the NFC West. Then I saw their pass protection. And their wide receivers. And the exasperated look on their head coach's face. That noted NFL philosopher, Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals, was dead on when he told me in August to beware the Rams' first seven games. "That schedule is a killer," he said. That's a big 10-4, Larry. It's not only dashing the hopes of Rams' fans; it's getting poor Sam Bradford squashed. Don't ask me what's wrong with right tackle Jason Smith. I just know he makes a rotten speed bump. The Rams spent the second pick of the 2009 draft on him, but he's overmatched. They benched him two weeks ago and could've benched him last Sunday. Next stop is Clay Matthews, and get ready to shift into reverse, Jason.

Next loss: Green Bay.
The Rams have a bye, which means two weeks to swing into damage control. The over/under for this game should be somewhere around 50, and I'm talking sacks of Bradford.

1. Minnesota.  
Brett Favre is one smart man. I don't know if he wanted to play again, but he must have been aware what would happen if he did -- which is what is happening to Donovan McNabb. Those aren't cries of "Donnnnnnnnn" cascading down the aisles of the Metrodome; they're boos. The natives are restless, this time calling for rookie Christian Ponder, and talk about predictable. You never look better than when you're a backup who hasn't thrown a pass. I feel for Leslie Frazier but give him this: He's holding fast to what he said in August, which is that McNabb was not a waystation to Ponder. This is not a bad team; it's a bad second-half team, with opponents outscoring the Vikings 80-16 in the last two quarters. When you can't close, you can't win ... and please don't remind Philadelphia. Somewhere, Brad Childress doesn't feel so bad about being out of football.

Next loss: Arizona.  
Football should have a mercy rule, and it should be invoked here. Call it the Mercy on Minnesota rule, and it demands that at least one game with the Vikings be called at halftime -- thereby allowing disgruntled fans to experience the thrill of victory instead of the agony of defeat. Maybe, just maybe, this is that game. Arizona not only lost its last three, it blew second-half leads in all three -- including a 10-point margin in the last four minutes last weekend. Maybe that's why Minnesota is the second winless team to be favored this weekend. You can look it up. Arizona is a 2-1/2-point underdog. Someone alert the front desk at the Lucky Hotel. We may have a vacancy.  

Category: NFL

Since: Nov 6, 2010
Posted on: October 5, 2011 1:47 pm

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Come on dolphins 0 and 16 take on for the team and maybe next year we can get some luck!!!!

Since: Dec 11, 2006
Posted on: October 5, 2011 12:48 pm

Lucky Losers: Take Four

It's pathetic that for the 2nd year in a row all the media and fans can talk about, regarding the bottom teams, is Andrew Luck.  It gets almost more press and updates than playoff races or division races.  Aweful, just aweful.  "Suck for Luck" is THE WORST cry in the history of the NFL.  I can't remember ANY player coming out of college that got even a quarter of the press than this clown gets.  Before we anoint Andy to the HOF before he even gets in the league, or assume he's so good he'll transform an 0-16 team in a 16-0 Super Bowl winner the 1st season he gets there - I'm saying this...

He'll be a bust.  Yes...I said it.  BUST.  Noone ever has, does, or will correctly identify which QB's coming out of college will be stars.  Lucky the Clown is no different.  Thinking is guy will save you franchise and return to glory is naive.  How many #1 overal QB's have turned into HOF studs?  Not saying he won't be a good NFL quarterback some day - but doubt a great, great one.  And let's hear the debate...there's NO WAY he'll turn some of these crap teams into contenders immediatley....or even in a few years.  Suck for Luck......and you'll be outta luck...

Since: Oct 5, 2011
Posted on: October 5, 2011 11:41 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

I'm from KC, spent the lst two years in St Louis and am now living in Minnesota. Even if all of the aforementioned football teams hve been terrible this season, there really isn't any reason you have to be a dick about it.

Since: Jul 27, 2010
Posted on: October 5, 2011 10:40 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Funny article. The real question I have though is if there are several teams that are within one game of each for the first overall pick halfway through the season, do they actually start taking the dive as we all expect somewhat already happens? Will it be more obvious if there are more than one or two teams fighting for the spot? Are teams really that sold on taking QBs #1 overall to TRY to lose? I think, while the season has been fun and very unpredictable so far, that something like this, where a few teams just didn't have the talent or time to get close to right will put a black stain on the season...if there are four teams at 1-7 or 2-6, are we going to see some historic "throwing in the towel?"

Since: Sep 6, 2006
Posted on: October 5, 2011 10:35 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

So you are telling me the Rams who just drafted Sam Bradford with #1 overall pick in 2010...are the 2nd team in runnin for Luck...You guys get more and more clue less each day ..I want a discount next year for playing fantasy sports with CBS....Rams need O line help ....what do you think if you put Luck behind that O line rite now he would play better then Bradford

Ah, yes. Another case of the idiot calling another an idiot.

GOGREEN2010: since you obviously need interpretation, here it is.  All judge is saying is that the Rams are in the running for the first pick.  The first pick of the draft WILL BE Andrew Luck.  The Rams would not replace Bradford with Luck.  Again, this is obvious to anyone who knows how to think.  But if they got the first pick, they would either (a) trade down for a giant sum of talent (allowing another team to get Luck at #1), or (b) pick Luck and trade him for a giant sum of talent.

Get it?  

Since: Sep 6, 2006
Posted on: October 5, 2011 10:18 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

No, Judge, the over/under of 50 for Rams-Packers applies to the number of points scored - by the Packers.

Since: Sep 28, 2011
Posted on: October 5, 2011 9:45 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Hey, don't forget about us in the Emerald city. Seattle is only 1 and 3, still in the running for the suck for Luck sweepstakes. T. Jack is a nice stop gap, but not a Franchisee Quarter Back. The O line is learning with T. Jack running for his life, and will be better able to protect whoever (hopefully Luck) the Hawks draft.

Since: Oct 2, 2010
Posted on: October 5, 2011 9:22 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Really ...So you are telling me the Rams who just drafted Sam Bradford with #1 overall pick in 2010...are the 2nd team in runnin for Luck...You guys get more and more clue less each day ..I want a discount next year for playing fantasy sports with CBS....Rams need O line help ....what do you think if you put Luck behind that O line rite now he would play better then Bradford..LMFAO....

Since: Sep 10, 2006
Posted on: October 5, 2011 8:35 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

Most of these teams have such huge problems that a new, veteran QB wouldn't get them many wins.  A great QB doesn't do any good if the line can't pass protect, there is no threat of a running game, AND the receivers are dropping passes.  I feel sorry for these big name college QBs.  If the first pick in the draft is a QB, than that poor guy usually gets destroyed.  The reason most teams are in the position of having the first pick takes WAY more than one guy to fix.

Since: Apr 25, 2008
Posted on: October 5, 2011 4:32 am

Lucky Losers: Take Four

As a Vikings fan, I hope they tank this season.  1-15. Pick Andrew Luck and watch him start next season. Maybe trade Christian Ponder for a pick or WR. The Vikings have many good pieces, problem is no QB.  The Vikings will need someone who can keep up with Aaron Rodgers.  The guy is amazing.  I hate saying that, but, you can't guard the Packers pass offense. Even if you cover everyone, Rodgers can tuck it and run.  He distributes to all his receivers well.  One promising thing for the Vikings is Rudolph.  I think he will be a great TE for years to come.  He can actually catch a ball that isn't right on the money.  With all that said, I hope Donovan McNabb starts the rest of the season. One of two things will happen.  Ponder does great and Vikes miss #1 pick and franchise QB.  Ponder does terrible and can't even get a 6th round pick for him. If they keep Ponder for a backup, they MUST move Joe Webb to WR, which I've been hoping they would wise up. You can always use Webb on an end around but option to pass. The Vikings MUST get Luck, Ponder will never outduel Rodgers.  Luck may never either, but, he gives us a much better chance. 

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or