The NFL's Basement Teams: The Sad Sack Seven

Dan BooneSenior Analyst ISeptember 12, 2008

The NFL is a parity-filled league, but when teams go bad in the NFL, sometimes they defy parity and become utterly horrid. Their sad-eyed coach looks like a dead man walking. The players look listless, the veterans just trying to survive unscathed and the rookies wondering what the hell is happening.

Welcome to the NFL's basement. Bidwell's Basement, as the old saws call it. It's not a nice place to live, but some teams get used to it and stay for years. In the case of the Arizona Cardinals and Detroit Lions, they dwell for decades.

And don't those doomed Oakland Raiders look comfortable lounging on the easy chair in the corner talking shop with the Houston Texans, who know no other life but the basement since their sad conception.

Let's crack the door, shine a light in the basement and watch them scurry from the sun light.

1. St Louis Rams

Was the Super Bowl season that long ago? It seems like a lifetime to these bad birds with lame duck coach, Linehan. Brittle QB Marc Bulger does not have long in the pocket behind a horrid offensive line. The defense looks listless. The team looked bored and unprepared against the Philadelphia Eagles. This team needs to be wiped clean...and it might be wiped right to Los Angles.

2. Oakland Raiders

What a directionless mess these Raiders are. The owner, Al Davis, doesn't particularly care for the coach. The coach says the feeling is mutual, and the defense coordinator, despite a terrible defense, eyes the throne.

In a contest marred with the Raiders' usual stupid penalties it was the confused offense and rotten defense that stood out as Mike Shanahan ripped the Raiders yet again. All that free agent money for this? 

3. Cincinnati Bengals

The Bungles are back! Did they ever really leave?

Head Coach Marvin Lewis will be gone at season's end. QB Carson Palmer has lost his interest for the game; or maybe it's just that the entire offense is rotten.

Losing to a below average Ravens team with a rookie QB and coach is a new low, even for the dreary Bengals. Slow footed, scared of contact ex-Seattle RB Shaun Alexander is rumored to be becoming a Bengal. That would turn things around. Word is first he has to commit a felony to be accepted by his teammates.

4. Cleveland Browns

All that offseason hype, the free agent promise, and talk of a high-scoring Super Bowl-caliber offense and they lay this home opener egg? Maybe Braylon Edwards should take off the thick tundra gloves so he could actually catch a pass. Watch for the Steelers send Romeo's merry men to 0-2.

5. San Francisco 49ers

The J.T. O'Sullivan era begins just like the Alex Smith era ended. A loss behind an uninspiring offense. The Yorks will never be Eddie D. Mike Nolan will have his Bay area home on the market by season's end and the next hire will fare just as poorly.

Where have ye gone Eddie D as the City by the Bay turns its lonely eyes towards you? Look south maybe to LA to play, Eddie says.

6. Houston Texans

Every year, next year is going to be the year it all comes together. Well it all came apart, as usual, when the Pittsburgh Steelers destroyed the over-hyped Texans in week one. Houston, we have a problem: no offensive line and an overrated defense.

7. Tie Between the Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs

Don't you love it when a below average player storms around like a misunderstood superstar? Meet Jon Kitna trying to play Bobby Layne. The difference? Layne was a hall of famer, Kitna a journeyman turnover machine, and the Lions decades ago were actually good. But as it's been since Layne left the Lions, the Ford's weekend toy remain the same tired, toothless cats.

Herman Edwards, just as he did with the Jets, has managed to mostly strip Kansas City of talent and excitement, but still they had a shot against the suddenly Tom Brady-less New England Patriots. As usual, Herm fell short. Look for the Hunts to look long at a new coach after the Chiefs rock their fans to sleep through yet another losing, dreary Kansas City season.

First Coach in the Can?

Lane Kiffin and Scott Linehan are fast out of the gate and in a dead heat. And Lane looks like he might want it to end.

On the Basement Steps

Rookie coach Jim Zorn gets a one week pass, but the Washington Redskins and Jason Campbell must show something soon. The NFL has no mercy.

Is that Peyton Manning at the top of the stairs complaining about his stripped offensive line? Fear not, the basement has room for the loser of the Minnesota Vikings-Indianapolis Colts matchup.

If Matt Forte put up a hundred in a half against the Colts' defense, Adrian Peterson ought to hit three bills by the fourth quarter. Still, Vikings QB Tarvaris "No Action" Jackson might find a way to lose.

Is that a timid Jaguar looking down the steps also?

We'll leave a light on for ya.

Catch you next week basement dwellers and keep the bad plays coming, baby.


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