Thursday, December 30, 2004

Kyle Turley, nominee for Hater Nation Man of the Year

Kyle Turley must have echoed the sentiments of St. Louis fans everywhere when he allegedly threatened to kill coach Mike Martz.



Both parties deny the threat, but Martz did go to the NFL security council because once again his mouth wrote a check that his ass couldn't cash. It's about time somebody finally called out Martz, even if it was a death threat.

Allegedly.

Martz has become the Teflon don of NFL coaches, despite the fact that his team has underachievers in every season since he had arrived. And when things go wrong, he's always the first to point the finger at somebody else.

But Martz got himself into trouble recently when he insinuated that Turley was dogging his back injury, opting to take the money and run.

It's kind of ironic too, since Turley's inactivity this season can be linked to Martz rushing him back onto the practice field.

But Turley read Martz's statements, and Turley not being the kind of guy that will back down from confrontation, had a "heated" discussion with the coach. Both parties admit that Turley did get a little emotional. But what did Martz expect when he made those comments? Turley is an emotional guy.

It seems like this was a calculated move on Martz's part to rid St. Louis of Turley and his hefty salary. Martz might not be able to coach a football team, but he isn't stupid. Martz made the remark, knowing full well that Turley would react in an emotional way. Then Martz made a bogus claim with NFL security so the club could release the tackle without taking a hit on the salary cap.

When this came out into a case of "coach said/player said," Martz figured that most people would recall the incident pictured above and take his side.

But the Hater Nation will not be fooled. Martz goaded Turley into a confrontation and deserves all of the blame in this instance. And it's a good thing Turley didn't follow through on his alleged threat...

we need the material.

MARTZ GETS GAME BALL

The St. Louis players gave the game ball to Martz, following the team's victory on Monday night. It seems fitting to recognize Martz and his genius as the Eagles clearly surrendered Monday night's game by pulling the starters after the first series.

Or maybe they were scared by Martz and his game plan ability. Yeah, that's it.

ONE LAST CHANCE FOR THE MESSIAH

Eli Messiah will have plenty of time to watch the Chargers in the playoffs as he completes the string with the Giants. The season will mercifully come to a close for the Messiah who remains deluded about his performance this season.

"I think I'm getting better every week, and it's just a matter of putting everything together," Messiah said. He also went to say that he intends to throw the ball to players on his own team next season.

Here's a look at some numbers:

Ryan Leaf (1998) 111-245 (45.3 percent), 2 touchdowns, 15 interceptions, 39.0 passer rating.

Eli Messiah (2004) 77-170 (45.3 percent), 3 touchdowns, 8 interceptions, 48.1 passer rating.

It's kind of eerie to see both Leaf and Messiah have the same completion percentage and couldn't find the end zone.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

It's Christmas Time for the Hater Nation!

It's always tough trying to pick a favorite Christmas gift. You don't want to hurt anybody's feelings and besides, you really like everything. In the spirit of the holiday, the Hater Nation would like to share it's top three gifts of the week.

The Raiders lose

Having the Raiders lose on Christmas (or in this case Christmas Eve) is a lot like giving booze as a gift--it's always appreciated. This year's gift was especially sweet because the Raiders had taken the lead with just over a minute left, only to fall in spectacular fashion in the end.

Barret Robbins arrested

The former Raiders center came to mind last week when two members of the current club were arrested for not being drunk and disorderly when they refused to leave a stripper's... err... woman's car. Robbins, not to be outdone, was arrested at 7 a.m. Friday morning after he was told the bar that he was trying to enter was closed.

The man is not bipolar, he's a drunk.

Martz will coach St. Louis in 2005

St. Louis coach Mike Martz said he will never leave the ball club and owner Georgia Frontiere has sent a letter to players and staff that back up that claim.

Good thing, too, seeing that Martz has really picked up the slack around here since the Raiders have become one of the most fruitless teams in the NFL.

"I would never resign from this job," Martz said. "I love this job. I would never leave these guys. I wouldn't do that to this staff or these players. Like I've told you many times, I'm too connected to this group."

How does Chris Chandler feel about that connection? Martz continued to say that "There is no team I would rather coach than this team regardless of the record."

That's very big of Martz considering that most of the team's problems can be linked to the coach. But as long as Martz wants to continue losing and the St. Louis ownership is more concerned about the money it bilked from the city during its expansion a decade ago, St. Louis appears destined to be a loser for some time to come.

CHARGERS WINNING STREAK SNAPPED AT EIGHT

If you would have told Chargers fans this summer that they would lose to the Colts in December (as expected) but still win the AFC West, they would have taken it. But Sunday's loss at Indianapolis was a disappointment and that shows how far this team has come in just a few months.

Moral victories are now reserved for teams like the Raiders, and it would be a discredit to the Chargers franchise to put a positive spin on Sunday's loss. But there is no team in the AFC San Diego should fear playing.

A RECORD IS SET IN INDY!

A couple of records were set in Indianapolis on Sunday.

LaDainian Tomlinson set an NFL with a rushing touchdown in his thirteenth consecutive game. Antonio Gates set the NFL touchdown mark for tight ends with his thirteenth of the year.

There might have been another record broken in Indianapolis on Sunday, but the announcers didn't really spend a lot of time talking about it, so nobody really knows what it was.

NEWS AND NOTES AROUND THE NFL

The Seahawks defeat the Cardinals, 24-21, to wrap up a playoff berth. The Birds, and the Hater Nation's dream of a 7-9 division winner, must now wait for another year. But Dennis Green will never have a reasonable explanation for benching McCown. And this is a guy that could convince a secretary to have an abortion.

Carolina remains alive with a victory at Tampa Bay, 37-20. The sentimental favorite of the NFC. The Panthers are the team to beat right now. This team is going back to the Super Bowl.

And how far has Tampa Bay fallen? They have players bickering and more discontent than any team in the NFL. And think about their Super Bowl victory. Do they beat anybody other than Oakland, seeing that the Raiders did nothing to disguise their playbook and signal calls from their former coach? The Bucs Super Bowl victory looks less impressive with each loss.

Ben Roethlisberger is hurt during the Steelers victory on Sunday. Most people seem to forget that Tommy Maddox is the best quarterback in XFL history.

The Patriots destroy the over-hyped Jets, 27-3, on Sunday. The Hater Nation would like to apologize to Tom Brady and the rest of the Patriots organization for over reacting to their loss on Monday night at Miami. New England is the class of the AFC. There is no discussion on this.

The Jets, and Chad Pennington, are a terrible fraud.

The Vikings can't beat the Packers at home to earn a playoff spot. Minnesota should back into the playoffs if the Eagles can knock off St. Louis today. But the Vikings should decline it's playoff invitation like a college team won't accept a bowl bid. Minnesota has no shot, even with a T.O.-less Eagles team in the mix. The Vikings have lost this season to the Eagles, Packers (twice), and Seahawks. They should give their spot to the Birds, who mercifully ended their season last a year ago.

What's interesting is that Mike Tice has an option for 2005 that must be exercised before next week's game at Washington. And that's the best his team could do for him? That's pretty telling.

Jake Plummer is near perfect in the Broncos victory to keep their playoff hopes alive. The Broncos are back in this thing. It will probably be just enough for this team to get eliminated in the first-round... again.

Eli Messiah is once again on the losing end at Cincinnati. Like father, like son. Maybe both can live vicarioulsy through Peyton. The only problem is somebody will probably have to tell all three what vicariously means.

Miami defeats Cleveland in the worst game in NFL history.
Which uniform was worse, the orange number from Monday night, or the all-aqua last night?

The Dolphins announced that they will hire Nick Saban as both coach/GM. That always seems to work out well. Just ask Butch Davis, Mike Holmgren, Mike Martz, et al. When are owners going to learn?

Dan no longer the man. Does anybody remember where they were when Dan Marino set the touchdown record in 1984? It's meaningless. If Marino weren't on television, it would not seem as big. It's tough to say, but Kurt Warner's 41 touchdowns seemed more impressive in 1999.

Some fantasy football seasons end tonight! Daunte Culpepper, Muhsin Muhammad, and Antonio Gates are an unbeatable combination in some leagues.

AND FINALLY

Cuban president Fidel Castro announced that his country has discovered a crude oil deposit off its shores that could contain 100 million barrels.

However, in an unrelated story, President Bush issued a statement that said that the United States fears that Cuba might now have weapons of mass destruction. That's weird.

Monday, December 20, 2004

BREAKING NEWS

Literally.

Eagles receiver Terrell Owens will miss the rest of the regular season and the playoffs with a sprained ankle and a broken bone in his leg. The star receiver will undergo surgery on Wednesday.

Now it looks like Donovan McNabb will not get a chance to break Danny White's record for NFC Championship Game futility--the club likely won't make it that far. The Eagles became just another run-of-the-mill NFC team without Owens.

Owens, ever the team player, said that he would continue to stick around with his teammates during its playoff run.

"I'm behind them. I told them that I would be their biggest cheerleader,' Owens said.



Lord knows he's had practice.

RAIDERS NEWS

There has been a long-running joke on the Hater Nation that the Raiders celebrate regular season wins like they just won the Super Bowl.

Two Raiders didn't realize that it was just a joke.

Cornerback Charles Woodson and Marques Anderson were arrested early Monday for investigation of public intoxication following the Raiders victory, according to Janie Pauley of the Associated Press.

The Oakland Police Department said that the players were arrested at 4:20 a.m. in downtown Oakland after refusing to leave the back seat of a woman's (read: stripper's) car. Both were jailed briefly, police spokesman Danielle Ashford said.

"Apparently what happened, an officer in our transportation section wsa flagged down by a woman who said that the men were in the back of her car and wouldn't get out," said Ashford. "They were very uncooperative. They had problems maintaining their balance, bloodshot water eyes and had a strong odor of alcohol. They were acting in a beligernet manner."

It's nice to see that Woodson and Anderson wanted to celebrate their "huge" victory in the one spot where they could interact with their fans--in jail.

And give the pair credit. At least they waited until after their Super Bowl to start partying, unlike Barret Robbins.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Can you believe it finally happened?

After weeks--months really--the unthinkable finally came true. Even the hardest of the hardcore fans started to think that it could never happen again. Many fans had hope in their hearts but the nagging doubt of past failures still nestled in the back of their minds.

But on one glorious Sunday, it finally happened. And now everybody can celebrate and remember where they were when...

the Raiders finally scored a first quarter touchdown.

In a year where the Boston Red Sox win the World Series, it only makes sense that the Raiders would finally punch one into the endzone before Pharaoh Raider's buzz dwindled.

Why, what did you think we were talking about?

SAN DIEGO CHARGERS: 2004 AFC WEST CHAMPS



The Chargers had an honest-to-goodness chance to run the table this season. An 0-16 record could have been very possible. But there was one important thing that the team did to turn this franchise around.

Was it the hiring of Wade Phillips? Close. Phillips deserves a share of the credit. He isn't a good head coach, but as a defensive coordinator he will make any defense a winner.

Is it the brand new offensive line? Again, it's close. It's unprecedented for a team to overhaul and entire offensive line and have the success the Chargers have enjoyed this season.

The top reason?

The trading of Eli Messiah. If the Chargers are handing out playoff shares, Eli Messiah deserves to be at the top of the list. Put him down for two shares. Nobody has done more the change the image of the Chargers and put some karma in their favor than Eli Messiah and his meddling father, Archie.

The Chargers were the joke of the NFL last season as they finished 4-12 and had not reached the playoffs since 1995. Fans were offering to help move the team to Los Angeles. The franchise continued to make bad public relations decisions and it appeared that the Chargers were destined to mark another losing season.

But then the Messiah turned his back on San Diego and the Chargers went from laughing stock to sympathetic underdog on one April afternoon. Nonpartisan fans are likely just as tickled by the Chargers return to the playoffs and the Messiah saddled with an 0-5 record in New York.

Wow, Eli really is a miracle worker. The only problem is that he didn't mean to turn around the Chargers by not playing for them. Could you imagine where the Chargers would be if the Messiah had decided to play in San Diego?

Eli would have likely signed his contract early and the team would have put him in at starting quarterback. Then the Messiah, and his 46.0 passer rating, would be leading the club to another losing season.

Chargers fans should now be thanking Messiah for requesting the trade and lifting the black cloud off of the Chargers franchise.

CLEVELAND ROCKS

It's fitting that the Chargers clinched in Cleveland, where coach Marty Schottenheimer could never quite nudge the Browns into the Super Bowl. The cynics will point out that the ol' ball coach does a great job of getting his team to the playoffs, but can't win the big one.

But remember, in a year where the Raiders finally scored in the first quarter, anything is possible.

WHO IS THE TRUE GENIUS OF THE NFC WEST?

Have two teams done less to win a division than St. Louis and Seattle? As hard as it is to pick between Mike Holmgren and Mike Martz, the duo have nothing on Cardinals coach Dennis Green.

Do you know what an accomplishment it is to be the biggest coaching dope in this division?

The Birds would own the division right now if they hadn't benched starting quarterback Josh McCown or lost to San Francisco twice this season. That's right, the 49ers two wins this season have come against the Birds. That's like being the only guy in town not to score with the town floozie.

But the Birds, believe it or not, are still in contention to win the division as Sunday's game at Seattle could be the showdown for the division title. This must happen. The NFL deserves to have one division winner with a sub .500 record.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

.

"We didn't see this coming," St. Louis receiver Torry Holt said. "If there was one game on the schedule where we felt confident coming in and winning, it's Arizona."

When you play for St. Louis and Mike Martz, you should never disrespect any team.

And especially if you fumbled a sure-touchdown on the one-yard line (as pictured above).

MARTZ QUOTE OF THE WEEK

Martz on quarterback Chris Chandler:

"It's tragic for this football team, for that position to hold the whole football team hostage," Martz said. "But that's where we are."

Couldn't any of the players say that about the coach?

ST. LOUIS FANS

A St. Louis fan, on a road trip to Arizona, told us that he once rooted for the Cardinals, but was now happy that he had a quality owner like Georgia Frontiere. What's the over/under on that marriage today?

GOAT OF THE WEEK

.

How bad do you feel for that guy?

The good news is the Vikings still have a chance to finish out of the playoffs.

NEWS AND NOTES AROUND THE NFL

Philadelphia clinches home-field advantage with a 12-7 victory over the Cowboys, but loses Terrell Owens for the rest of the regular season. Donovan McNabb will break Danny White's record for consecutive NFC Championship Game loses if Owens is not healthy for the playoffs.

And seriously, does this surprise anybody with all of the bad karma that Owens has built up this season?

The Raiders celebrate like it's the Super Bowl after meaningless victory over Tennessee. No wonder the fans are deluded if the players keep this up.

Kansas City rips Denver, 45-17. Who has fallen farther, faster? The Broncos, Sammy Sosa, or Kobe Bryant? Denver went from division contender to out of the playoffs. If only if was the NFC West.

Colts to keep trio together as they prepare to franchise tag Edge. But to call this group the "Triplets" is a disservice to the real Triplets that actually won three Super Bowls.

Where the hell was the Hater Nation last week? Las Vegas. Look for that story in the mid-week edition.

The Panthers lose at Atlanta Still do not count out the Panthers. And how in the world did Mike Vick not put his knee down on that touchdown dive? How?

The Titans won its franchise best sixth game ever on Sunday, beating the Bears. Yeah, but Houston coach Dom Capers had the Panthers in the NFC Championship Game by the second season. Just saying is all.

AND FINALLY

Alright Chargers fans, it's time to get excited.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Tuesday Extra!

Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck shared a laugh on the sidelines Monday Night as his team clung--and you must use that term when speaking of Seattle--to a 10-point lead with two minutes remaining in the game. But it was the Cowboys that had the last laugh as they had an improbable comeback in the final minutes to beat the Seahawks, 43-39.

Hasselbeck should have known better.

The Seahawks took a 17-point lead deep into the fourth quarter against St. Louis earlier this season, only to see that lead disappear like the club's championship hopes. Remember when the Seahawks where the "chic" pick to win the NFC? The Seahawks were supposed to walk the yellow brick road out of the Emerald City and all the way to Jacksonville and the Super Bowl.

Now the Seahawks are tied in the worst division in the worst conference in the NFL. Seattle might end up winning the NFC West by default--remember the Seahawks are battling St. Louis for the division title--but they are a clear one-and-done in the playoffs.

"I felt pretty good when we were up by 10 with a couple of minutes to go," Seattle coach Mike Holmgren said. "Let's just say it: You should win those. We've lost two of those this year, and it might prevent us from getting into the playoffs."

Holmgren also has a clear shot at the Hater Nation genius of the year, edging ahead of St. Louis coach Mike Martz. And that's no easy feat. But it's been quite a week for resident geniuses named Mike in the NFL.

Martz called for a fake-field goal trailing big to Green Bay last Monday night. That's pretty dumb.

Denver coach Mike Shanahan from the pole position in the AFC West to outside of the playoffs in only two weeks after division-losses to the Raiders and Charger. That takes skill.

But Holmgren and his team clearly are the front-runners in this category.

The Hater Nation has grown to expect this from Martz, but what happened to Shanahan and Holmgren as both coaches have won Super Bowls in the past? Shanahan has not won a playoff game since 1998. Funny, that's the same year that John Elway retired. Holmgren hasn't managed the same kind of success in Seattle that he enjoyed in Green Bay. Maybe Brett Favre had something to do with that?

Both Shanahan and Holmgren have been intent on winning their way--with mediocre quarterbacks. Shanahan tabbed Jake Plummer as the successor to Elway in Denver, despite the fact that Plummer has never been able to capture the magic that made him a star at Arizona State. Holmgren turned to Hasselbeck, who can't match the charisma of his sister-in-law, Elisabeth Filarski.

It's hard to be a genius when you don't have the proper tools, and Shanahan and Holmgren have nobody to blame but their egos and self-inflated sense of worth.

QUICK THOUGHT

If it takes a good quarterback to win, what does it mean when you have a great quarterback and you lose? It means that you are Mike Sherman.

IN HONOR OF PETER KING, HERE ARE 8 THINGS I THINK I THINK

1. How many people thought it was a mistake for the Cowboys to pass on Stephen Jackson and draft Julius Jones? Maybe Jerry Jones is a genius afterall.

2. Peter King said in his Tuesday column that the Giants, if they continue to lose, might move into position to draft USC receiver Mike Williams. Good idea. Too bad the Chargers own that pick. Williams would give San Diego a pretty good receiving corp. of Williams, Antonio Gates, and Keenan McCardell. And don't forget, LaDainian Tomlinson is a pretty decent receiver, too.

3. Coffee sucks.

4. If the playoffs started today, two NFC teams with .500 records would make the plalyoffs, Seattle and St. Louis.

a. It's pretty clear that a St. Louis playoff berth would keep Martz employed, and the Hater Nation with material for another year. But can you count on Martz and company to win? St. Louis plays at Carolina this week and ends the season with home dates with Philadelphia and the NY Jets. Those are three games that St. Louis could easily loss.
b. How does Holmgren motivate his team in the next four weeks? If he can't keep their focus in the final minutes of two pivotal games, what chance does he have? It has gotten so bad, Jerry Rice is looking for another team to gravy-train into the playoffs.
c. Chris Chandler will be the starter for St. Louis this week. Chandler was the starter for Los Angeles--when the team was known as the Rams--in 1994. He got hurt in one of the worst game in Rams history, an 8-5 snoozer against Atlanta .The Hater Nation paid 10 bucks to get into that game.

5. Coaches have no business being general managers. Holmgren left Green Bay because he wanted to be both coach and general manager. Sometimes you should be careful of what you wish for.

6. Biola upset No. 3 Azusa Pacific in the GSAC men's opener for both teams last week. Biola could be a player in the NAIA's toughest basketball conference, but Concordia still looks too strong.
a. Sorry, the Hater Nation does not have any athletic daughters.

7. Dodgeball is released on DVD today. The Hater Nation only endorses Ben Stiller movies that involve Owen Wilson. And Meet the Fockers? Too late.
a. What ever happened to the fat guy that wrote Swingers?
b. Is Ben Stiller the Mike Sherman of Hollywood? Stiller parlayed one great movie, There's Something About Mary, into the head coaching role of an endless line of bad movies. Of course, the real star of Mary was Brett Favre, so there you go.
c. The Hater Nation does not want to hear which Ben Stiller movies you thought were great. They all sucked.

8. LaDainian Tomlison voiced his support for the return of Drew Brees for next season. The smart thing to do, still is, to bring back Brees for another season. But again, this is the Chargers.

AND FINALLY

Compared with their peers in Europe, Asia and elsewhere, U.S. 15-year-olds are below average when it comes to applying math skills to real-life tasks, new test scores show.

That means that some 15-year-olds think Seattle won last night.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Is it time to get excited yet?

The Chargers won a huge AFC West showdown with Denver on Sunday that clinched a winning season for the first time since Ryan Leaf almost single-handedly ruined the franchise. Is it finally time to get excited about this team?

.

Eh.

This is the Chargers. A team that thrives to get its fans hopes up, only to bring them crashing back down to Earth. The Chargers are like a wrestler that goes to the ring with a hidden object in his tights and then sucker punches you with brass knuckles when the referee isn't looking.

And ask Kansas City and Cleveland fans if you should get excited about a Marty Schottenheimer coached team.

SO MUCH FOR BRONCOS WEATHER

How bad have things become for the Broncos? The club has lost two consecutive games to California teams in what has been called "Bronco weather." The Raiders humiliated the Broncos last week in a come-from-behind victory. And it was the Chargers on Sunday which emerged from a rain-soaked Jack Murphy Stadium with a firm grasp on the AFC West. (But don't get too excited, yet.)

Broncos coach Mike Shanahan has received a free pass in the Hater Nation for his mastery of the Raiders. But Shanahan isn't quite the genius he's perceived to be against the rest of the league.

The Broncos were in cruise control two weeks ago with an opportunity to put the AFC West away against Oakland and San Diego. A perfect 2-0 wasn't out of the question. Fans could have stomached a .500 record. But to drop two important AFC West games on consecutive weekends shows that this team does not have an ounce of heart. The Broncos are absolutely gutless.

The popular theory in the NFL is that the desperate teams always finds a way to win. The Broncos found ways to lose in the past two weeks. Jake Plummer threw four interceptions on Sunday, as Reuben Droughns made like Michael Blaine and disappeared. The team just imploded.

Hmm, sounds a lot like the old Chargers.

WADE IS NO BUM COACH

The Chargers defense save the team on a day when quarterback Drew Brees and tight end Antonio Gates have been mere mortals. The defense has played great all season and coordinator Wade Phillips--the man Shanahan replaced as head coach--is a big reason why.

Phillips is one of those "good coordinator/bad head coach" kind of guys that the NFL has. Guys like Buddy Ryan, Kevin Gilbride, and of course, Mike Martz. Look for St. Louis to take a run at Phillips when Martz is fired this offseason.

If Phillips has a good sense of humor, he's a shoe-in.

THE MESSIAH KEEPS GIVING

Eli Messiah has delivered three victories in three NFL starts, but just not for his own team--the Giants. How is that trade working out for the Messiah? If he's shown one thing this year, it's that he can't handle a blitz. If his name was Eli Jones, he would be on the bench right now.

The best part is that the San Diego improves its draft position with each Giants loss, as the club owns the Giants first selection thanks to the Messiah trade. Nice job Poppy Manning.

With this type of football acumen, it's hard to imagine why Archie didn't win in New Orleans.

RANDOM THOUGHT

Does anybody else get the feeling that Jake Plummer will be the first quarterback in NFL history to thrown an interception on an attempted spike? One day, Plummer will drop back to spike the ball only to have it deflect off a lineman's ankle and into the arms of a defender.

TAMPA BAY MAKES LIKE SHERMAN AND MARCHES THROUGH ATLANTA

The Falcons failed in their quest to wrap up the NFC South on Sunday. Again, Mike Vick continues to be the most explosive and aggravating player in the NFL. If there is anybody in the world that believes that the Falcons got the best of the Vick for Tomlinson trade, please step forward.

It's a wash at best, but the momentum has clearly swung to the Chargers favor this season.

EAGLES MOTIVATED BY THE HATER NATION

So much for the Packers being the top team in the NFC as the Eagles dominated on Sunday. But a couple of points to think about here.

The Packers were coming off a Monday night hangover, which is always tough to overcome. And the Eagles have now taken the crown from the Raiders for "Most NFL Championships won in December."

As long as Andy Schottenheimer is the coach and Donovan White is still the quarterback, there is no reason to fear the Eagles.

None.

STRANGE PLAY

In the final seconds of the Broncos game, receiver Darius Watts caught a ball on what turned out to be the final play as he ran upfield instead of heading for the sideline.

Watts was in the precarious position of needing a first-down and to get out of bounds... he did neither.

NEWS AND NOTES AROUND THE NFL

Colts score anther 40 points to win fifth consecutive game.
Seriously, Tony Dungy is gambling on these games. There is no other explanation. But remember, the NFL will let the Colts have their fun during the regular season. But when teams are allowed to mug the Indianapolis receivers during the playoffs, this will all be for not.

Shayne Graham kicks game-winning field goal for Bengals. Raven would probably be the best team in the NFC. They won't make the playoffs.

Chad Hutchinson leads the Bears to shocking victory over the Vikings. Alright, maybe this guy can play. But you have to do it against a better defense than Minnesota to really prove it.

David Boston is suspended for steroid use. You mean that's not all natural? Barry Bonds says its natural to gain 30 pounds of muscle in one offseason.

Brett Favre's 37-game touchdown streak comes to an end. It's a shame that Michael Strahan doesn't play for Philadelphia... he owes him one.

St. Louis enjoys its bye week. Oops, St. Louis played San Francisco. Same difference.

AND FINALLY

The producers of a reality porn show that has taken Europe by storm are in talks with U.S. broadcasters to air the program on the other side of the Atlantic, financial news weekly Barron's reported on Sunday.

Produced by Spain's Private Media Group Inc., the "Private Stars" show gives five "real world" men a shot at a contract with the company -- the winner being the one who performs best on television with one of Private's top female stars, the weekly reported.


Hopefully ABC won't broadcast the show before Monday Night Football. But if America is outraged by a harmless skit, what chance does this show have of making it to our shores?

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Wednesday Evening Post

Monday night's game with between St. Louis and the Packers was good fun for the Hater Nation. Mike Martz was exposed on a national stage. Ryan Longwell earned enough points to force a tie in a fantasy league. It was a good night.

But all is not well in the Hater Nation.

St. Louis fans are now calling for the firing of Martz. This is something that cannot happen. Who else but Martz would call for a fake-field goal with his team trailing by three scores? Only a genius with the offensive talents of Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt, and Marshall Faulk would put the game--and possibly the season--in the hands of kicker Jeff Wilkins.

What other coach would do that? No other coach would try to match wits with Mike Sherman and lose.

Sure, Martz is a genius if Wilkins makes that play. But Wilkins didn't and Martz isn't. But it's this kind of thing that could cost Martz his job. And it's exactly the reason why the Hater Nation needs Martz to stay on the job.

Martz and St. Louis are a match made in heaven. Martz is like Col. Jessup in A Few Good Men. We need Martz on that sideline. We want Martz on that sideline. With Martz, St. Louis is guaranteed many years of mediocrity. St. Louis is guaranteed many seasons of underachieving, with teams that are ill-prepared and unable win on the road.

The Hater Nation needs Martz.

But maybe we are giving St. Louis too much credit there. The team is still run by John Shaw and company. This is the same organization that hired Rich Brooks. The same organization that ran Dick Vermeil out of town after a Super Bowl victory to elevate Martz to head coach. There is good reason to believe that if Martz is fired, St. Louis will hire another coach to continue it's losing tradition.

There is a stark similarity to the fall of St. Louis and the fall of the Cowboys. Dallas ran Jimmy Johnson out of town after two Super Bowl wins. And it has yet to recover.

But it's too big of a risk to take. The Hater Nation has a sure thing with Martz, why would we spoil that?

WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON IN THE NFC?

The NFC is much like the AFC during the 1980s and early 1990s. There are no good teams. The San Diego Chargers would run away with this conference. But instead the NFC will serve up a sacrificial lamb in the Super Bowl.

Who is the leading candidate to win the NFC? The Hater Nation breaks down the conference.

Philadelphia The Eagles are losers of three consecutive NFC Championship Games. So they brought in Terrell Owens and his fist full of championship rings. They should have brought in a running game. The Eagles have no chance.

Atlanta The Falcons have quietly amassed one of the best records in the conference. But they are one Mike Vick injury away from being the Cowboys.

Green Bay Is it any surprise that the Packers have become one of the best NFC teams when it promoted Brett Favre to head coach and demoted Sherman down to offensive coordinator. The Packers running game makes it the favorite.

Minnesota Nice defense Vikings. No chance.

New York The Giants were 5-4 when they benched Kurt Warner in favor of Eli Messiah. They might not win another game this season.

St. Louis. Chuckle.

Seattle The Seahawks where the chic team to pick in the NFC this season. The kind of team that NFL pundits fall in love with. But if there's one coach that makes Martz look like a genius, it's Mike Holmgren.

Holmgren fancied himself a general manager during his tenure in Green Bay. The Packers were wise to resist. Instead of fielding a competitive team with Favre for a decade, Holmgren wanted to prove to the world how smart he was. Holmgren sure did. But not to the results that he expected.

There are a host of teams that at 4-7 including Carolina, Detroit, Dallas, and Arizona. The Lions could make a run if Kevin Jones ever gets it together. The Cowboys defense is a mess. The Cardinals are the Cardinals. They have promoted it’s third-string quarterback this week. Good bye.

The wild card is the Panthers. John Fox has done a better job of coaching this injury-plagued team than his NFC Championship Team.

AND FINALLY

One fans asked, "If St. Louis and the Raiders played, who would you root for?"

We turned to our reader, "The Nuge," for his answer.

"If the Rams play the Raiders, you cheer for the Blimp to crash into the stadium, enveloping the players, coaches, and fans in a horrific fireball. You also hope that Georgia Frontandrearie dies last, her lungs filling with puss as her withered, charred hand attempts to pull a quarter from the pocket of the lifeless body of the season ticket-holder next to her."

Ouch.