After watching NFL Network’s non-stop coverage of the preseason (seriously, if you want to stay up until 5 a.m. to watch the Raiders’ 3rd String take on Dallas’ 8th string running back, it’s on there), I’ve come to a few conclusions.
One: I watch way too much football. To the point where I can rattle off seven or eight inane facts about guys who are only playing on special teams. They don’t even merit a look with the fourth string defense, but I know their cousin’s best friend’s last name. Sad.
Two: I really hate NFL Network’s preseason coverage. Don’t get me wrong, I love having access to eleven million preseason games. There’s no way I would otherwise watch Seattle’s preseason games, but I was apparently so football-starved, I’ve seen their first game twice.
But what I hate most is that they show the local feed of the games. Now, no, I don’t expect them to hire announcers to call every preseason game (but if they do, I’m available and have broadcast experience), but it’s a crap shoot on whether or not you’ll get your local announcers.
And really, there’s nothing more annoying that watching your market’s team and have the announcers completely ignore them. I learned nothing about the Vikings by watching the Vikings/Colts game on NFLN, but I did learn that the Colts have really terrible preseason coverage.
Three: The Oakland Raiders have the best preseason announce team in the league, bar none. I say this mostly because, in watching their game, I’m pretty sure Grant Napier was playing a drinking game in the booth (he lost) and Jim Plunkett blamed a receiver who was nearly decapitated for not keeping his eyes on the ball.
Four: I’ve come to the realization that what I really want to see out of this season is Brad Childress punching Brett Favre in the jaw.
Now, when I was offered a position writing about the Vikings, I made a promise to myself that if I was going to write about Brett Favre, it was only going to be in passing or as a means to a joke.
But I just can’t take it anymore.
The three big stories this past week were Michael Vick signing with the Eagles, Tom Cable knocking the crap out of an annoying assistant, and Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer reporting that everybody and their mom at Vikings Training Camp is saying that Brett Favre is just waiting out two-a-days before singing his Vikings contract.
And frankly, I don’t care about Michael Vick.
Now, forgetting for a moment how in the world someone’s mom would know this, let’s assume this was true. It fits Favre’s MO to wriggle his way out of doing anything before the season, and you and I both know full well that if Favre were to show up at their doors with flowers and chocolates, Ziggy Wilf and Brad Childress would sign him faster than you can say “ridiculous mustache.”
But that’s where the loving, rosy view of the whole thing ends for me.
Is Brett Favre an upgrade over Sage Rosenfels and/or Tarvaris Jackson? Sure. And heck, having him at quarterback might very well make the Vikings the favorites to lose to New England in the Super Bowl.
But there’s still a part of me that knows who Brett Favre really is. And that part wants to see Brad Childress take a page out of Tom Cable’s playbook (and please, just that one page), and level his old friend the first time he steps out onto the practice field.
That may be the only way Brad wins over this town and this football team, and it’d be totally worth the $10 million, Ziggy would have to shell out for it.
Don’t think he’d do it. This is the same Brad Childress who called himself 190 pounds of rompin’ stompin’ dynamite when threatened by former player Troy Williamson, who was so scared by Childress’ words that he only dressed for eight games last season.
And just look at him. If you took any NFL coach into a fight with you…well, it would probably be Mike Singletary or Tom Cable. And even then, you’d either spend half the fight mooning the guy or denying that the fight took place.
Anyway, now that I think about it, I’m pretty sure Brett could take Brad Childress in a fight.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is, “Welcome back, Brett!” But, when you do sign, make sure you’re looking at the scoreboard as you run off the field, because I hear Leslie Frazier’s got a pretty mean left hook.
News from Around the League:
NFC East: Osi Umenyiora looked good in his first game back from offseason knee injury. He’s expected to return to form as one of the league’s hardest to spell without looking names this year.
NFC West: Still terrible.
NFC South: It looks like Derrick Brooks is going to sign with the Saints, giving them a much needed presence at linebacker. Also in Saints news, they released Jason David in a move that even Jason David probably agrees with.
NFC North: Jay Cutler admitted this week that he still has no idea how to throw to Devin Hester. Apparently, Cutler didn’t know that Hester doesn’t like to “run routes” or “catch passes.” Also, B.J. Raji finally signed with the Green Bay Packers. Raji said he won’t miss a step despite not making most of training camp. Agent Brett Favre agrees.
AFC East: Apparently, Tom Brady hasn’t missed a step during training camp, looking just fine despite having a knee held together by scotch tape and Elmer’s glue. Meanwhile, Terrell Owens' TV series marches on.
AFC West: The big story we haven’t talked about here is that Kyle Orton looked horrible in his first preseason game, throwing three picks in his turn with the Broncos’ first team. In Orton’s defense, however, the preseason is still young, and he hasn’t quite reached his elite blood alcohol level.
AFC South: Speaking of hilarious former Bears, Rex Grossman looks like the odd man out of the backup quarterback race in Houston after injuring his hamstring this week. Grossman’s not sobbing into his neck beard, though, because he knows that he’ll have a Madden partner soon when Matt Schaub suffers his annual crippling injury.
AFC North: Cedric Benson swears that he’s going to rush for 1,000 yards. No word yet on how many seasons that’s going to take him. Meanwhile, Chad Ochocinco posted his gamer tag on his Twitter this week, and challenged people to play him on X-Box. Sadly, his friend account filled up in minutes, so the Bengals will have to find some other way of communicating with the Ocho during the season.