The Friday Clock-Watcher's Guide to NFL Week 15
As I've detailed previously, we are currently in the worst work period of the year. Christmas and the vacation time that comes with it is so close that we can taste it, but it's still so, so far away.
No joke: I legitimately become depressed when I remember that there's another full week after this one before Christmas week. Couple that with the fact that it's about negative-500 degrees and constantly dark outside, and you have the recipe for an old-fashioned case of the holiday blues.
But fret not, cube monkeys, as an NFL Sunday is almost upon us. And now, with the season drawing to a close, each Sunday takes on added importance. Playoff spots are up in the air. Jobs are on the line. It's absolutely delicious.
So stop thinking about that TPS report. Don't worry about getting too drunk and making a fool out of yourself at the holiday party. Don't stress about having to stay late next Friday. Football is almost here.
Here is the Friday clock-watcher's guide to NFL Week 15.
Controversy in Chicago
It's an age-old question: Would you rather hook up with a super-hot girl with a not-so-hot personality, or a decent looking girl with a great personality?
While some men will puff out their chest upon hearing this question and announce they'll take the decent girl, they are lying. At first, anyway.
You see, we men are simple creatures. Put a hot girl in front of us and we lose all logic and reason. Eventually, we realize that personality is important, but at the jump, we are mostly (and by mostly, I mean completely) concerned with physical appearance.
This is the dynamic currently unfolding in Chicago, with coach Marc Trestman having to choose between Jay Cutler and Josh McCown as his starting quarterback.
Cutler is the hot girl with the awful personality. He's got a cannon attached to his right shoulder and can make all the throws. But his demeanor leaves something to be desired, as he doesn't seem like the nicest of dudes.
McCown is the decent girl with the glowing personality. He doesn't possess the physical attributes that Cutler has, but he gets the job done, is clearly beloved by his teammates and comes across like the kind of dude you'd want to have a beer with.
Trestman is going back to Cutler for this Sunday's matchup in Cleveland, and unless the Bears win and Cutler plays well, he's going to be flayed alive for his decision. Trestman has chosen the hot girl with the awful personality.
So enjoy Bears-Browns on Sunday, and as the game unfolds, think about which girl you'd have chosen, and find out if Trestman made the right call.
Mike Shanahan Going Full Costanza
Seinfeld is the greatest sitcom of all time, and it's not a subject that's up for debate. If you disagree, you're wrong. It's that simple.
One of the best episodes in the show's history features its greatest character, George Costanza, trying desperately to get fired from the New York Yankees, and ultimately succeeding by driving around the parking lot with the World Series trophy attached to the back of his car. For your viewing pleasure, I've linked to the video in the above space. Enjoy!
When you watch that video, tell me it doesn't remind you of Redskins coach Mike Shanahan. Seriously. All that's been missing from Shanahan's press conferences this week has been a sign that says "Fire me!" or inviting the media out to the parking lot so he can take one of the franchise's Lombardi Trophies for a spin.
Shanahan's decision to bench a healthy Robert Griffin III for the remainder of the season is nonsensical and ridiculous. He's basically telling off owner Dan Snyder and the Redskins fanbase. It's the greatest example of insubordination since Jennifer Aniston flashed the bird to Mike Judge in Office Space.
This Sunday, Shanahan, new quarterback Kirk Cousins and the Redskins play at the Atlanta Falcons, who are also in the midst of a depressing season. It's a fascinating matchup because I legitimately have zero clue who is going to win and what's going to happen.
Would I be shocked if the Redskins squeaked out a close win? No. Would I be shocked if the Redskins lost 75-0? No.
So this Sunday, get your popcorn ready and enjoy Redskins-Falcons. It's going to be the most entertaining matchup of 3-10 teams in NFL history.
Monte Kiffin's Last Stand
This past offseason, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones fired defensive coordinator Rob Ryan and hired 258-year old Monte Kiffin in his place. Ryan was later hired by the Saints to serve in that same capacity.
In a related story, the Saints have a top-10 defense, while the Cowboys have one of the worst units in recent memory. Ah, good ol' Jerry Jones. He's always dependable for a laugh.
This past Monday night, the Cowboys didn't record a stop on defense until the end of the game, when the Bears knelt on the ball to end the game. Dallas made Chicago's backup quarterback, Josh McCown, look like a mix of Jim McMahon and Sid Luckman. Seriously: Me, you and nine random dudes off the street could have put up 30 points on the atrocious Cowboys defense.
Dallas is 7-6 and one game behind Philadelphia in the NFC East. If the Cowboys don't make the playoffs, Kiffin will surely lose his job. That means the next three games of the season are Monte Kiffin's Last Stand.
Kiffin looks clueless during games, completely unable to stop the chaos on the field. His defense is awful, and he has no answers.
No matter how bad your work week has been, his has been worse.
So on Sunday, when Dallas takes on the Green Bay Packers, enjoy it each and every time the cameras pan to Kiffin in the coaches box and it looks like he's having a senior moment. You'll feel instantly better by comparison.
Carrie Underwood in Daisy Dukes
Faithful readers of this column know my thoughts on Carrie Underwood, who sings the Sunday Night Football theme song for NBC.
She's so stupidly hot that I almost can't deal with it.
I haven't yet dedicated a place in this column for her, so it's now time.
Yes, Carrie. I have been waiting all day for Sunday night. And it's mostly to watch you.
You see, I was down on Underwood at first. I'm a Faith Hill guy. I love her long legs and her voice. I know every line to the theme song, and it's because of Faith Hill. I was legitimately devastated when I found out she wasn't returning in 2013, which says something about me, and I'm not sure that something is good.
But Underwood has grown on me. Even though she put forth an acting performance in The Sound of Music that would make Tom Green blush, she's rocketed up my list.
I am now obsessed with her rendition of the song. Go ahead and watch it in the above space. She's amazing. I can't get enough.
And let's be real: The main event of the entire thing is her outfit. Those daisy dukes are simply preposterous. Her blonde hair is perfect. Her legs look incredible. She's simply stunning.
My work week has been long. It's been tiring. It's been arduous. But come Sunday night, it'll all be worth it.
I've been waiting all week for Sunday night, Carrie. And it's because of you and your daisy dukes.
This Week in Gambling
I'm no longer giving survivor pool advice in this space, mainly because I don't understand how one could still be going on. If you're still alive in one, you should probably quit your job and become a professional handicapper.
So let's get right to it and talk about this week's spreads.
I am in love with the San Francisco 49ers laying 4.5 points in Tampa Bay. The Bucs have played better as of late, but the 49ers are a step up in class. San Francisco is going to win by 20 points. The chances of Mike Glennon beating the 49ers are about the same as me going on a date with Carrie Underwood. It's my best bet of the week.
Another game I dig is Monday night's tilt between the Ravens and Lions in Detroit. Somehow, the Lions are favored by six points. I don't know about you, but I'll take John Harbaugh and Joe Flacco over Jim Schwartz and Matthew Stafford any day of the week, twice on Sunday and three times on Monday night. Give me the Ravens to cover the spread, and if you're feeling especially frisky, throw a few shekels on the moneyline.
The last one I'm obsessed with is the Patriots and Dolphins in Miami, with the line currently sitting at a pick-em. Seriously. If you put money on the Patriots and they win by one point, you win the bet. How is this not the lock of the century? I know the Pats just lost Rob Gronkowski, but I don't care. Give me Brady and Belichick over Tannehill and Philbin. Lay the Patriots with confidence.
Godspeed, my friends.