Thursday, April 23, 2009

FMTMQR: Gregg Easterbrook Will Probably Not be Hired by The Onion Anytime Soon

Rejoice, haters of logic and comedy. The dipshit is back.

Here's some draft advice. The top three offensive teams last season -- New Orleans, Denver and Houston -- did not make the playoffs. The top three defensive teams last season -- Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Philadelphia -- all made the playoffs. Now, what should your draft strategy be?

Well, before drawing too strong a conclusion from that cherry-picked stat, I might look a little further than just the elites of each category and try to see generally whether or not having a good offense or good defense helps. Then I would discover that 7 of the top 12 offensive teams made the playoffs... as did 7 of the top 12 defensive teams. Then I might look back at years gone by, and discover that the top 3 offensive teams all made the playoffs in 2007 and 2006, and that 2 of the top 3 made it in 2005, 2004 and 2003. Then I would remember that Gregg Easterbrook is a stat-cherry-picking asshole. Then I would probably just use a draft strategy based around a combination of need and best player available.

As for [New England; idiotic TMQ nickname for their team omitted], last year on draft day, needing front-seven help, they traded down, passing on the chance to draft touted front-seven players Sedrick Ellis, Derrick Harvey and Keith Rivers, in order to select Jerod Mayo and gain an extra choice, which they exercised on linebacker Shawn Crable. Rivers had a sound rookie season, but Ellis was invisible with 30 tackles, while Harvey, supposedly a sackmaster, rarely was in the same area code as opposing quarterbacks. Mayo was terrific for New England, and Crable looks like a quality addition.

Crable did not play a snap last year. Yes, that's correct. Due to injury, THE DUDE HAS NOT YET PLAYED A SINGLE FUCKING SNAP IN THE NFL. But New England drafted him, so he looks like "a quality addition." Meanwhile, Derrick Harvey and his 3.5 rookie year sacks (certainly not great, but indicative of competence)? Bust. Just cut him now, Jacksonville. Why can't you be more like New England and draft guys who look quality without even stepping on the field?

Going into Saturday's draft, New England has stockpiled three second-round choices -- look for the Patriots to choose wisely while others around them reach. I'd rather have New England's draft position than the positions held by Buffalo, Denver or Detroit, even though each of these teams has two first-round choices. Detroit is under pressure not to blow the first overall pick;

That's like saying it's better to sit in the audience at a game show than be a contestant. You wouldn't want to fuck up in front of everyone, would you? Sure, being able to take any player you want is nice... but I think we can all agree that it's not worth the possible embarrassment that comes from messing up a draft choice. After all, the Lions have never done so before.

Denver has a history of first-round busts (Dan Williams, Marcus Nash);

Marcus Nash was drafted in 1998; Dan Williams was drafted in Nineteen-ninety-fucking-three. Sixteen years ago. Really, Gregg? Since 1998, Denver has taken Al Wilson, Deltha O'Neal, D.J. Williams, Ashley Lelie, Jay Cutler, and Ryan Clady (later praised by Easterbrook in this very column) in the first round. This is Easterbrook at his very worst- making preposterous claims as he goes along in order to fit his pre-crafted thesis. Seriously, fuck this guy. If you go back far enough every team has first round busts. Ever heard of Chris Canty? First round pick of the Patriots in 1997. Out of the league by 2001. Oops. (That said, after reviewing their first round picks for the past 15 years, I have to hand it to the Patriots. Very good at this whole draft thing overall.)

and the Bills haven't made a smart choice about linemen in some 15 years (recent first-round line busts John McCargo, Mike Williams and Erik Flowers).

So... what if... they choose players at other positions with these two first round picks?

New England can accomplish more with three second-round choices than most teams can accomplish with two first-round selections.

Completely unsubstantiated. Just thrown out there as fact, because Gregg hopes you're not really paying attention.

In other sports news, at this time of year every Tom, Dick and Harriet has a mock draft, but only Tuesday Morning Quarterback actually mocks the draft, with my annual mock of mock drafts, which follows.

1. Detroit Lions: Edward Liddy, CEO, AIG
By the standards of the 0-16 Lions, AIG is a huge success.

Crickets. (But it's pretty topical! Gotta give him that! Have you heard about this whole AIG thing? It was in all the papers!)

4. Seattle Seahawks: Dr. Manhattan, naked blue superhero
He could play for the Blue Men Group without needing a uniform, thus cutting costs.


6. Cincinnati Bengals: Tim Geithner, secretary, U.S. Treasury
The Bengals' ownership hopes the TARP fund will buy up the franchise as a toxic asset.

Topical again. And crickets, again.

10. San Francisco 49ers: Ralph Ostrove, founder, Paul Stuart clothiers
The Niners have gone from a coach who wears business suits on the sideline to a coach who drops his pants in public; they might benefit from this high-end fashion store that caters to men. Stuart's new business-casual affiliate says it offers a "curated collection."

Snobbery. And crickets. You get the idea- this kind of brain vomit goes on for a full 32 picks. Simply an insult to anyone who has any semblance of a sense of humor.

WWJHE -- When Would Jesus Hold Easter?
Last year, Easter fell almost a month before Passover. TMQ complained that Easter should always fall on the Sunday after Passove begins. Jesus, after all, just before his crucifixion had come to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. So why doesn't Easter fall immediately after the first night of Passover? Dating for Passover has always been determined by the ancient Hebrew calendar; in 2009, Passover began on the 15th of Nisan, exactly as it did when Jesus walked the Earth. Easter dating involves a complex formula having to do with the vernal equinox and paschal full moon. During the Middle Ages, the Roman church established that Easter dating formula in part to de-emphasize Christianity's relationship to Judaism. Protestant denominations decided to accept the Roman dating, though nothing about the equinox-and-moon business is mentioned in scripture. Formally linking the observance of Easter to Passover would benefit both Christianity and Judaism, by emphasizing common history. Actually, it would benefit Western Christians. As pointed out by readers, including Sylvia Denisov of St. Louis, in the Eastern Orthodox Church, Easter always falls on the Sunday following the first night of Passover.

Changing the Western dating formula for Easter, to sync with Passover as is done in Eastern Christianity, would be both historically accurate and a nice ecumenical step. This spring, Easter in the West did fall on the Sunday after Passover began. Turns out that for the next six years, Easter as observed by Western Christianity will follow the first night of Passover; the schedules aren't out of whack again until 2016, when Easter falls on March 27 and Passover does not begin until April 23. That creates six years in which Western Christians could stage a campaign to restore the Passover-Easter relationship. How's about it?

I'm not against it. Wait, is this a column about football?

Series Finale of "Battlestar Galactica" Complaints:

A quick copy/paste into Microsoft Word reveals that Gregg devoted, I shit you not, 1,832 words to this item. That's nearly 3 single-spaced pages. Among those who care enough about the NFL to read about it online- Who. Gives. A. Flaming. Shit? Making it all the better is that most of the item is dedicated to, whate else, Gregg's complaints about the inaccuracies/plot holes in the show. We need someone monitoring these science fiction shows! I'm so tired of them not accurately representing what it's like to travel long distances in space!

Also, the NFL Gave Several Billion Compensatory No. 1 Draft Choices to AIG: The system by which the NFL awards compensatory draft choices continues to mystify. The league said San Diego was owed a fourth-round compensatory pick for losing Drayton Florence to Jacksonville; the Jags benched Florence, then waived him after one season. The league said the Redskins were owed a seventh-round compensatory pick for losing quarterback Mark Brunell to New Orleans; Brunell did not attempt a pass in 2008.

It's not quite a full and total explanation (as the League keeps some of its formula secret), but here you go, dipshit.

At 11 p.m. the Night Before Games, Bills Coaches Conduct a Passport Check: "I just have to create my own following up here in North America" -- Terrell Owens being introduced in Buffalo. Texas is in North America; so is Mexico for that matter. Though, Owens' statement that the Bills may become "North America's team" is a good reading of the Toronto alignment. My favorite Owens claim about the Cowboys: that Tony Romo and Jason Witten were meeting in secret to draw up plays that did not include him. On an exclusive basis, TMQ has obtained this surveillance tape of one of the secret meetings, held at a vacation resort:

ROMO: (Wearing dress and wig.) What's the password?

WITTEN: (Wearing false beard.) Swordfish. (Enters room.)

ROMO: The new play diagrams are on this microdot.

WITTEN: How do you read a microdot?

ROMO: Shhhhhh -- not so loud. (Turns on radio to a mariachi station.) That's in case Terrell has the room bugged. Check out Blast Max 88 Cross.

WITTEN: (Examines play.) Wow -- Owens covers his body in Krazy Glue, then sticks himself to my defender so I can go deep. Sweet!

ROMO: We can't tell him the play is really to you.

(Tape interrupted as Canadian Mounties burst into room.)


Trojans note: On draft day, TMQ will root for linebacker Clay Matthews III, who despite his fabulous football pedigree -- related to former NFL stars Clay Matthews, Clay Matthews Jr. and Bruce Matthews -- was a walk-on at USC. No major-conference school offered Matthews a scholarship. Now he's likely to be a first-round NFL draft choice.

And as soon as he's drafted in the 1st round, TMQ will immediately begin hating him for the duration of his NFL career. If only he could go undrafted, play in the lower-tiered Arena League for a couple years, retire, work a construction job for a couple years, then make the NFL at age 27, get cut from four teams, and THEN finally catch on with someone, he would have a life-long fan in Gregg.

At Least Someone's Gruntled: "Disgruntled no more" -- that's how "SportsCenter" anchor Linda Cohn introduced the news that Jay Cutler had been traded. Cutler whined so much that "disgruntled Jay Cutler" practically became his name. Since he is no longer disgruntled, does that mean he is now gruntled? Yes! Little known dictionary fact: "gruntled" means "satisfied." From now on, the gentleman in question to TMQ will be "the gruntled Jay Cutler." And TMQ will remain suspicious of the grunted gentleman. Cutler has a fine arm, but what exactly has he accomplished in the NFL to justify all his whining? Cutler is 17-20 as an NFL starter. Kyle Orton is 21-12 -- I'll take the guy who wins the game, please.

Oh my good fucking grief. Are we going to go through this again? That is the worst sports-related argument ever. Period. Ever. I don't even think Colin Cowherd would make that argument.

Orton did play with a better defense in Chicago, but Cutler played with better offensive personnel plus the Denver home-field advantage.

No home-field advantage in Chicago- no sir. Nope.

Though Cutler made the Pro Bowl, he finished 16th in quarterback rating, behind Seneca Wallace and Shaun Hill,

Who I think we can all agree are both better than Cutler.

while throwing 18 interceptions, second-worst in the league.

On 600+ attempts, often trying to lead Denver to victory from behind because of their shitpile of a defense.

Cutler's high school team was 15-0 when he was a senior; since then, in college and the pros, he's 28-55 as a starter.

How dare he not win at Vanderbilt! Everyone wins at Vanderbilt. I believe they're colloquially known as "the Northwestern Wildcats of the SEC."

For seven consecutive seasons, Cutler has not been a winner -- while becoming a guy who cares about his stats and complains nonstop about the treatment he is receiving.

Get rich quick scheme: replace "seven" with "thirteen;" replace "Cutler" with "Alex Rodriguez;" submit to; accept job as baseball writer; profit.

TMQ thinks the Broncos will be seen as coming out way ahead in this trade. Way behind? The Redskins, who publicly undercut quarterback Jason Campbell by trying to trade him and draft choices for Cutler, only to have the world find out the Broncos would rather have the workmanlike Orton.

"Workmanlike." "Gritty." "Erstadian." They all sound nice.

Like Cutler, Campbell is 17-20 as a starter -- yet Cutler is constantly praised and Campbell constantly criticized.

If you think Jason Campbell is anywhere near as good as Jay Cutler, I encourage you to move to Mongolia and not ever watch sports again.

Yet Campbell was the one who played behind a terrible offensive line last season, while Cutler was protected by one of football's best pair of tackles.

A fair point; but remember when Gregg was shitting on Denver's chances of doing anything useful with its two first round picks this year? Hmmm... I wonder where their left tackle came from? Surely he wasn't a first round pick- Denver only drafts busts, like the still well-remembered Dan Williams, in the first round.

Next Week: TMQ's plan to grade the draft interrupted when honor-code violations are discovered in fifth round.

Yeah... what?


Jack M said...


How could you fail to mention that Gregg has a new picture that makes him look even more like the smug asshole that he is?

Elliot said...

Thanks for reminding me how much I hate TMQ Larry.

Martin said...

You forgot "Ecksteinian".

Gregggg also opens his column by talking about how important defense is to winning. That to win the Super Bowl, you need a great defense.

On the other hand, Jay Cutler is a loser because he had more weapons then Orton, but lost games. His defense? Well he had a really good offensive line. His defense? He had a great home field advantage! (which from all reports, new Mile High isn't nearly the home field advantage the old one was in terms of nosie level) What about the freaking defense Gregggg? Orton...he jsut wins games baby!

TMQ, fuck him with a 2 by 4.

Tonus said...

Gee Gregg, if your team is in the top three in offense, what might you be looking to strengthen via the draft? DURRRRRRRRRRRRRR...

Chris W said...

"New England can accomplish more with three second-round choices than most teams can accomplish with two first-round selections."

Lar'--you forgot to mention that this is actually a pretty fucking bluntly obvious statement to make.

Let me rephrase it in a way which is less intellectually dishonest: "New England could conceivably draft more good players with three first day draft picks than most teams could with two first day draft picks, if they picked the best possible players imaginable with those three picks."

Jarrett said...

According to the YouTube comments, you just linked us to frogs and not crickets.

Way to fact check, Larry.

Also, "TMQ fuck him with a 2 by 4" would make for a good label for this football season.

Larry B said...

I won't say it's wrong, but it's completely unsubstantiated. His argument was this: last year, New England traded down and took two good players (ONE OF WHOM HAS YET TO PLAY A SINGLE FUCKING DOWN). Detroit is under pressure to make a good first pick, Denver drafted two first round busts in the 90s, and Buffalo is no good at drafting linemen. Therefore, (insert argument from above). It may well be true, but the entire paragraph does very little to support it.

It's like- I like pizza. It is April 24. Therefore, the sun will rise in the east tomorrow.

Chris W said...

I know what you're saying. I just wanted to point out how obvious the statement is.

"NE can conceivably do more with 3 2nd round picks than another team could with 2 1st round picks!"

Venezuelan Beaver Cheese said...

Yep, it's officially safe to label Derrick Harvey a bust. As Mario Williams proved, if a defensive end doesn't have a great rookie year it's a sign he doesn't belong in the NFL.

Kofi Bofah said...

You are funny...

Anonymous said...

I like that Gregg described the Easter formula as "complex". It's not. Not even remotely. Here's how it works.

1. Wait for spring to start.
2. Wait for the first full moon.
3. Wait for the first Sunday after that full moon.
4. Profit!