Friday Clock-Watchers Guide to NFL Week 3

Nick Kostos@@thekostosContributor ISeptember 20, 2013

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 8: Running back Trent Richardson #33 of the Cleveland Browns runs for a gain during the first half against the Miami Dolphins at First Energy Stadium on September 8, 2013 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

This week at the office has probably sucked.

Maybe your company is putting in new carpet and you’ve been forced to relocate to the area where interns sit.

Maybe you’ve been asked to come into work on a Saturday, Bill Lumbergh style.

Maybe the dude with the out-of-control flatulence has had Mexican for lunch the past three days.

But guess what? Football Sunday is almost here, and there are many reasons why you should be so excited that the Friday workday just zips by.

As always, I detail those reasons in this space. Here is the Friday Clock-Watchers Guide to NFL Week 3.

The Browns Corporate Downsizing

This past week, the Browns traded running back Trent Richardson, whom they selected with the third overall pick of the 2012 draft, to the Colts for a first-round pick in next year’s draft, thus beginning yet another rebuilding effort in Cleveland.

That move came off the heels of the team announcing that third-string quarterback Brian Hoyer would start Sunday’s game in Minnesota, with starter Brandon Weeden nursing a thumb injury.

It’s akin to when a struggling corporation lays off a ton of talented people in a misguided attempt to cut cost and plan for the future. Plans such as these are doomed to end in failure.

For anyone reading this at his desk or cubicle that isn’t a Browns fan: Smile, and thank the heavens. Remind yourself that no matter how bad things are in the office, no matter how much you hate your boss, no matter how many times the vending machine has stolen your quarters, no matter how late you have to stay on a Friday, it could be worse.

You could be a Browns fan.

This Week in Gambling

Hopefully, you took my advice last week on survivor pools and went with either the Texans or Ravens. Remember, when it comes to survivor pools, you don’t want to think outside the box; you want to be locked inside that damn box until you collect your winnings.

This week, there is only one choice for a survivor pool. Don’t overthink it. It’s staring you right in the face.

There is a 0 percent chance that the Jaguars will walk into Seattle and beat the Seahawks. There is a better chance of Miley Cyrus resolving the conflict in Syria than the Jaguars upsetting the Seahawks in Seattle.

Don't even think about taking Jacksonville.
Don't even think about taking Jacksonville.Brian Bahr/Getty Images

Stay inside the box. Take the Seahawks and don’t even bother checking the score.

And if you turn on the television Monday morning and see Bashar al-Assad twerking, you’ll know something is up.

The Jaguars-Seahawks game provides a wonderful segue into this week’s gambling lesson: Only wager on an underdog if you think that team has a legitimate chance of winning the game outright.

For example, if you could easily conjure up a scenario where the Rams beat the Cowboys, it’s worth taking the points with St. Louis. But, if you think there’s no way that Dallas loses, you must lay the points.

Basically, don’t bet your hard-earned money on the Jaguars. They might be 19-point underdogs, but Vegas didn’t just pull that number out of thin air.

When Seattle is up 34-3 at the end of the third quarter, you and your back account will thank men

Fantasy Football Turned Upside Down

Another reason why the Browns-Colts trade I detailed earlier is so delightful is because of its impact on fantasy football.

Unless you play in a league stacked with slappies, Trent Richardson was a first-round pick. Whoever drafted him has likely been cursing for the last two weeks while bemoaning his lack of carries the way normal people complain about things like money and job security (it’s worth noting that I spent an entire day angry at Bills running back C.J. Spiller after Week 1).

The person most hurt is probably the dude from the fantasy commercial who gets on Richardson’s shoulders and proclaims that Trent is his favorite player. It’s going to be difficult for Richardson to change jerseys without dropping that guy on his head. Poor fellow.

Richardson is now a Colt, and his value is sky-high as a result. However, Indianapolis faces a super-tough matchup this weekend in San Francisco. Remember, the 49ers are coming off a shellacking at the hands of the Seahawks in Seattle (are you still considering betting on Jacksonville?), and will be looking to lay down a beating on Indianapolis.

So after Richardson puts up a pitiful effort on Sunday, approach whomever in your league owns Richardson and see if you can work out a deal, as he’ll be a monster for the remainder of the season.

Then it will be you who will get up on Richardson’s shoulders and look down upon the moron that traded him, laughing all the way to fantasy glory.

Watching Friends Battle

It’s a well-known fact that Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano are friends, which makes the matchup between their respective teams this Sunday even juicier.

There’s little question that New England will steamroll a Buccaneers team more rife with drama than an episode of All My Children, and that fact begs the question: Should Belichick take it easy on his friend Schiano, whose hot seat is ready to burst into a raging inferno?

Friends forever?
Friends forever?Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

What would you do if you were Belichick? Would you want to make your compatriot look good in defeat, or eschew the relationship in the name of “business”?

It’s a fascinating social experiment, and one that likely has many parallels to your workplace. If you’re the kind of person that would have no mercy on your friend in the name of making money, well, I think Sunday’s game in New England is for you, because you’ll likely be smiling in the fourth quarter when the Patriots are up by 20 and still throwing the ball.

Carrie Underwood’s Daisy Dukes will be the Best Part of Sunday Night for Pittsburgh

Well, I’ve done a complete 180. I am officially on board with Carrie Underwood’s rendition of the Sunday Night Football theme song.

Maybe it’s the catchy-as-hell beginning: “Woah-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh!” Maybe it’s the awe-inspiring lyrics that Lord Alfred Tennyson would be proud of: “Hey Jack, it’s a fact!”

Or, more likely, it’s how smoking hot Underwood looks in daisy dukes. Either way, the song is massively entertaining.

Why yes, I *HAVE* been waiting all day for Sunday night!
Why yes, I *HAVE* been waiting all day for Sunday night!Chris Graythen/Getty Images

This week on SNF, the 0-2 Steelers host the 2-0 Bears, and I hope that all Pittsburgh fans watch Underwood’s performance, because it will be the best part of their night. The Steelers are awful, and will drop to 0-3 with a loss to Chicago.

Most football fans will rejoice at that notion. While Cowboys fans get flak for being the most obnoxious fanbase, “Stillers” fans aren’t too far behind them, as they’re always ready to remind you of their six Super Bowl titles while waving a yellow towel in your face (it’s worth noting here that I am an obnoxious New York Yankees fan).

On Monday morning, the Steelers fan in your office that grew up in Tacoma, Washington won’t have much to say.

That alone should get you through the Friday workday faster. 


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