Welcome to the final installment of the Bluths Explain Football. Here we talk football and Arrested Development. There's no good reason for it. It's just something we do.
No coincidentally, it is my final article for the AFC South Blog.
Today's episode is the finale of season one, "Let Them Eat Cake."
With the family suffering from the tyranny of Atkins, Michael is asked to confront Kitty, who has returned with evidence of George Sr.'s malfeasance. Kitty demands control of the Bluth company in exchange for what she knows of the crimes.
Micheal realizes his father hasn't committed tax evasion, but has actually been building homes illegally in Iraq. In order to escape a polygraph, George Sr. fakes a heart attack. He then escapes the hospital, going on the lamb.
"I'm showing this as a model again and I don't want people to think we use shoddy workmanship!"
After more than 1,000 articles over the past 366 days, I'm stepping away from this terrific job. I've loved working for Bleacher Report, and getting paid to write about football has been an amazing opportunity.
I hit the point where I felt I couldn't manage all my responsibilities and guarantee that you, the reader, would get the quality of work from me you deserved.
Rather than hanging on and letting my work get sloppy, I'm leaving as lead writer for the AFC South.
"For your information, I got a job."
I've been working two full-time jobs for the past 12 months, and as those of you who have done it know, that pace is unsustainable.
I ultimately had to make a choice to spend more time with my family. I decided back in December that I wouldn't be renewing my contract with B/R.
I happily stayed on the last few months to finish my contract and the season. I felt like we started a journey together, and I wanted to see it through.
The league year has ended, and now it's time to go. Plus, I have to be at work in an hour so there's that.
"Now I'm expected to climb back on top of Kitty and do my thing again!
One of the biggest factors in my decision was the fact that I've had two book projects shelved for the past year while I covered the AFC South.
I've been working with Scott Kacsmar and others on a book about wide receivers, and given my other commitments, I realized that if I didn't devote some time to it, it would never get written.
I'll still be around. You can find my work regularly over at Colts Authority. I'll be popping up there from time to time. You might even see my work again here at B/R.
"There's a good chance I might have committed some light treason."
I want to say one thing on behalf of my replacement.
Perhaps the one thing that was the most difficult about covering the division was the mindless complaints about bias in my work.
The thing I've learned the most about covering football professionally is that all writers have biases. Sports writers don't care about your team. They don't care if it wins or it loses. They care about one thing: being right.
Like any job, all a sportswriter really wants is to get his work done. It's impossible to write a thousand pieces about four different teams and still hold petty grudges. In fact, that's one of the things that made it easy to step away.
I used to enjoy football and have a rooting interest. After covering it for a year, even the games became drudgery toward the end. All I wanted was for something interesting to happen so I could say something new and file my pieces.
Over the course of the year I was called: Colts Hater, Colts Lover, Schaub apologist, Texans hater, a Titans homer, a Chris-Johnson-hating troll, a Jags kool-aid drinker, anti-Jaguars and (for reasons I still can't fathom) Chicago boy.
Sports writers all root. They root for their friends. They root for the players that help them out. They root for whatever outcome makes them look smart or makes their job easier. They don't really care about the teams, but trust me—they are rooting for something.
The next time you are tempted to accuse a writer of bias, don't bother. It's the first clue you haven't thought through your position well enough. He doesn't care about your team. He's just trying to write a story. Call him lazy, stupid, ignorant or anything but biased. Believe me. It's a waste of breath.
Actually, shelve lazy too, come to that. He's probably working 65 hours a week and watching more game film than you can imagine. Stick with "stupid." That's probably the most accurate slur you can use.
I checked my fan card at the door when I took this gig. Honestly, I don't know if I'll ever get it back in quite the same way.
Someone who is completely unbiased is someone who is uninvested and doesn't care about the topic. You don't want an "unbiased" perspective. You think you do, but you're wrong.
The next AFC South lead writer will have a view point, and may even root for one of the teams. Don't bother calling him biased. He's not. He's just a guy doing his job.
"It's because of family. I like the family."
- George Michael
I have three young children, and I really want to watch them grow up and teach them to be fans. Working on Sundays detracted from my ability to enjoy games with them the way I enjoyed them with my father.
You don't get these years back.
"Pack your bags."
I can't thank the staff at Bleacher Report enough for the chance to write every day.
I never aspired to be a sports writer. It was never something I wanted or pursued, but they offered my the job, and it was my privilege to do it.
From day one, I was impressed with the standards of B/R. I've been open about the doubts I had when I joined the organization, but I leave with none. This is an amazing place for writers to work.
I was never handed a topic or a headline I didn't agree with. I had incredible freedom to pursue stories and angles I found interesting.
I even got paid to watch the first season of Arrested Development.
That's what you call a dream job. I'll miss it for sure.
I was lucky to work here.
"Maybe we should kiss again, to teach them a lesson about obvious."
It's hard to walk away, to be honest. I've shared with more than 2.1 million of you over the last year (though about 500,000 of those hits came from Verely C. Evans begging teams to sign Vince Young).
Getting to wake up each morning knowing that there were people out there who would make my articles a part of their day was amazing. I've loved getting to know many of you, and I hope you were entertained and informed by what you read.
So thanks to you, the readers most of all. Without you, I'd still be sending angry rants to my brother wondering why no one was out there saying the things I was thinking about football.