Saturday, November 30, 2013

"Mega Box" of Topps Update: Puig or Nothing

I had to go to Target to get a gift for somebody. Knowing me, you'll probably guess that I couldn't restrain myself from moseying down to the card aisle, taking a gander at the releases, and settling on a still-incomplete Topps Update. You guessed correctly.

This box is extra special because A.)- It comes with 2 chrome packs of Update, which is actually kind of awesome, and B.)- it holds the promise of a yet-elusive Yasiel Puig rookie card. I really hope I get that Puig.

Before the chrome, I'm opening the 5 regular packs.

Pack 1-
325- Vernon Wells, seen hopefully during his first few months as a Yankee, when I still loved him.
269- Kendrys Morales, seen in a Mariners uni, for one of what seems like the few times he played.
129- Davis Wright HRD card.
207- Matt Thornton
Hyunjin Ryu Making their Mark insert, which is pretty nice. There's another Dodger rookie I would have preferred, but oh well.
172- Blake Parker
202- Yoenis Cespedes HRD winner cl
130- Jesse Chavez

Pack 2-
99- Derrick Robinson rookie. Have it
102- Christian Friedrich. Have it
6- Joel Peralta
94- Okay, this is actually kinda nice. A JOBA CHAMBERLAIN GOLD #'D TO 2013. This is nice, as it's a Yankee I've heard of, but it's still Joba, so that takes the sting out.
71 mini of Ken Griffey Jr. Awesome.
226- Michael Cuddyer HRD
227- Carlos Gonzalez AS
304- Patrick Corbin AS

Pack 3-
156- Lanynce Nix. Got it
38- Denard Span. Got it
233- Anthony Rendon Rookie Debut. Got it, still no rookie.
Cole/Cutch Franchise Forerunners. Have it, sadly.
223- Jose Valverde, who is now off the team he's depicted on.
145- Michael Cuddyer AS
219- Pedro Alvarez HRD
299- Ian Kennedy, which is nice.

Pack 4-
30- Mike Adams. Got it
169- Ezequiel Cabrera. Got it
4- Matt Adams. Got it.
181- Oliver Perez. Got it.
Chasing History of Bret Saberhagen, which is nice.
105- Corey Kluber
183- Jeff Bianchi RC
92- Jeanmar Gomez

Pack 5-
263- Austin Romine. Got it
229- Jason Vargas. Got it
292- Zach Britton. Got it
234- Jurickson Profar Rookie Debut
Making their Mark of Nick Franklin
252- Preston Claiborne. Has a Sterling-Hitchcock-esque ring to it.
199- Juan Lagares
89- Michael Pineda. Hah.

Five Packs in and, to quote Bono, I still haven't found what I'm looking for. Chrome is up.

Chrome Pack 1-
3- Matt Harvey AS. Always nice to pull a Harvey
48- Adam Wainwright AS
53- Annnnd...THERE WE GO! YASIEL PUIG CHROME ROOKIE! HOW ABOUT THEM APPLES??? That's awesome. That is fricking amazing. I am holding onto this one for sure.
8- Clayton Kershaw AS

Pack 2-
15- Michael Cuddyer HRD. Pulled that in base
29- David Wright HRD. Pulled THAT in base.
42- Ah, just as I was beginning to lose hope. A WIL MYERS ROOKIE! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I pulled a chrome Yasiel Puig, and then a chrome Wil Myers. And I was complaining about not getting an Anthony Rendon rookie before. Funny how it all turned out. These are both so awesome.
Postseason Heroes (CHROME) of Deion Sanders. I already have the plain version of this.

So, that was awesome. The Puig and Myers alone were worth the 15 bucks. Well spent.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

What I'm thankful for, albeit a bit late

This may be very late, but I figure that I should do something resembling a meaningful Thanksgiving post, even if it ends in two hours. I don't care. Doing it anyway.

So, what the hell am I thankful for?

First of all, my family. My mom, and my dad, who've done a very good job of not screwing me up (though I never said it was a perfect job). This extends to my extended family, including my cousin Dylan, who's eventually going to take me to my first Mets game, my uncle Gary, who usually celebrates the holidays by giving me an unopened wax box from under his bed, and my cousin Kyle, who appreciates the boys in pinstripes as much as I do. Of course, thanks must be given to my Mariners fan Uncle Don, my cousin-ish Pete, the Red Sox fan, and everybody else, baseball or no baseball.

I'm thankful for my friends, as plentiful as they are, and as abundant as they will be. Most especially, I'm thankful for my girlfriend, who is quite possibly the most awesome non-card-related thing to enter my life in the past 365 days. Yes, she beats out the McCutchen game used. And like the aforementioned card, I hope she sticks around for awhile.

I'm thankful for good health, which goes for mine and my family's. A shame it couldn't reach to the Yankees.

I'm thankful for the Packers and Raiders, for at least giving some effort today.

I'm thankful for the radio stations, for laying off the Christmas music until at least tomorrow. Thanks guys. Knew I could count on you.

I'm thankful for the entire community of bloggers, for making my fifth year of blogging one of my most successful, and my most viewed. I'm thankful for my influences in blogging, most of whom are no longer blogging/only blogging sometimes/completely mailing it in. I'm thankful for the people who still read and comment on my blog, and I'm thankful for everyone who still trades with me, which reminds me, there are one or two things I need to get in the mail.

I'm also thankful for the invention of cardblogging, for giving me so much of a good time, and so many ideas to throw onto the interwebs.

Most of all, I'm thankful for baseball. I'm thankful for the New York Yankees, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Baltimore Orioles, and, yes, even the Red Sox at times. I'm thankful it's still as strong of a passion that it was when I started in 2009.

So yeah. I'm thankful for a lot of things. And I'm glad I could share this one too.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


Today's a pretty big one.

Today, this veteran blogger turns eighteen years old. I'm now free to do basically whatever I want on my own terms, and I'm celebrating by doing something I've done on my own terms for the past 5 years...writing a blog post.

The reason Matt Carpenter is shown above is because he was born today as well. Which is horrifying, considering the fact that I despise his team, and everything about him. He's one of the few notable players to share a birthday with me. Thankfully, there's also Lefty Gomez, a Yankee Hall of Famer, but the kids don't know him. They know Matt Carpenter, because he almost won a World Series this year.

I mean, at least Nick from Dime Boxes has somebody recent like Josh Reddick, who they can boast about, and say 'that's actually pretty cool', but Matt Carpenter is not as fun as Josh Reddick. Plus, Matt Carpenter doesn't even have a huge beard. And I don't want him to grow one either.

All I ask is that some new rookie come along with a November 26th birthday, amaze at their position, astound in every category, maybe even play for a team I tolerate, and make me proud to be born today. Really, nobody else was born on November 26th, save for Charles Schulz, Tina Turner and Robert Goulet. I just need somebody big.

By the way, before you ask, no, I didn't get any cards today. However, I'm seeing my extended family in two days, and one uncle and particular might have something up his sleeve.

Monday, November 25, 2013

In which Dan Haren attempts to reclaim his former glory... signing with the Dodgers.

Overall, a pretty nice deal for both parties. This means that, once again, Haren will be a part of a super-rotation. I'll list the ones he was already a part of.

2005-2006 A's rotation- Haren, Barry Zito, Mark Mulder, Rich Harden, (Tim Hudson)
2010-2012 Angels rotation- Haren, Jered Weaver, Ervin Santana, (Zack Greinke)
2013 Nationals rotation- Haren, Gio Gonzalez, Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmerman
2014 Dodgers rotation- Haren, Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Chad Billingsley (?)

Haren's just used to it, I guess. However, this season, if the Dodgers want to hit the postseason again, Dan Haren needs to be brilliant. And by brilliant I mean so much better than he was this season. He needs to go full on awesome like he was back in 2008 and 2009, or that era.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Football Predictions: Week 12

We made it to week 12! How the hell did we make it to week 12?

Seriously, this season's going to fast. I need to enjoy the Packers' season before they collapse any further. But still, we have another week of football on our hands. The bright side this week is that I don't have to witness the Eagles lose to anybody, but I don't get to see them win, either.


Steelers vs. Browns:
Who should win: Browns. This has been a weird-ass season for both teams. The Steelers are losing where they should be winning, and the Browns are winning where they should be losing. However, both teams have sort of gone back to normal in the past few weeks. In my opinion, going in the Browns are the better team. The Browns still have Jason Campbell, and while we don't know how reliable he's going to be (Raiders fans will agree here), he's still an experience backup. So, they may have a shot.
Who will win: Browns. The Steelers have proved that they can win, but they also proved that it is very, very hard for them to do so. Today they are playing a team with the same amount of chance to win as they do. They could win here, but I say the Browns will eventually take it. This may be wrong, but I really don't care.
Overall: Browns over Steelers.

Buccaneers vs. Lions
Who should win: Lions. Three weeks ago, this would have been a much easier game to call. This was before Mike Glennon got good, and before the Lions got less awesome. So it could be tougher than anyone is estimating. Then again, we're dealing with a first place Lions team, one that has been defying expectations all year, and has a great QB in Matthew Stafford. The Bucs are only in 3rd place because the Falcons lost on Thursday, which must be pretty humiliating for the Falcons.
Who will win: Lions. This does not belittle the merits of Mike Glennon. It just belittles the merits of everyone else on the Bucs. And without Glennon, the Bucs would be 0-11 right now. So unless Mike Glennon has another outstanding game, the Lions will have another easy win, to set themselves up for a nice leadin to the Thanksgiving game against the Packers.
Overall: Lions over Bucs. Glennon will probably get hurt midway through. Nyeh.

Vikings vs. Packers:
Who should win: Vikings. Again, this is who SHOULD win. The Packers, without Aaron Rodgers, have lost all momentum, and it hasn't helped that they've been pitted against difficult teams. Their current QB is basically a nobody, and their offense is floundering. Speaking of floundering offenses, Christian Ponder is only slightly better than the Packers guy. The only reason why I'm pitting the Vikings to win up top is because they seem to think they have a chance.
Who will win: Packers. Yes, I know this is ridiculous. I know that there is a slim chance for a Packers team without Aaron Rodgers to win anything, let alone a game against a last place Vikings team. But...keep in mind, Ponder will make a lot of interceptions, so, technically, the Green Bay backup doesn't need to be great. Ponder just needs to be good at passing, period, no matter who ends up catching the ball. It may be risky, but I say the Packers will take it.
Overall: Packers over Vikings. AP will basically just leave.

Chargers vs. Chiefs:
Who should win: Chiefs. The Chiefs, faced with a Broncos roster that is killing everyone not from the same farm system as the QB this year, fell last week for the first time. This is not a new feeling for Andy Reid, and I imagine that his mopiness and sad expression at the press conference felt refreshing to him, as it had been a year since he'd felt it. Sadly, this expression might not return after the game today. The Chargers are much easier to beat than the Broncos, and even a decent Philip Rivers won't stop the killer Chiefs.
Who will win: Chiefs. When a team with this little talent does this well in the season, after a while you just stop questioning how they win, and just start going along with it. The Chargers are not a very good team, and the Chiefs are amazing this season. So, it should be very obvious.
Overall: Chiefs over Chargers.

Bears vs. Rams:
Who should win: Bears. These are two very decent teams, playing without their elite quarterbacks. The only difference is that the Bears have a much stronger offense, and the Rams have a stronger defense. So, really, this could go either way. I'm giving the top half to the Bears because, going in, they have more of a chance to win it, and they have more of a team than the Rams.
Who will win: Rams. This is very risky, but I have a feeling that, in some way, shape or form, the Rams are just gonna spontaneously come around and get really good. I have no idea how, and I have no idea what the hell's going to spurn this on, but I just see the Rams doing really well today. It may be a total misfire, but really, anything can happen here.
Overall: Rams over Bears.

Panthers vs. Dolphins:
Who should win: Panthers. You have Cam Netwon, who is inconsistent by the year, on one of his 'on' seasons, completely killing every team he plays. You have a stellar offense, a stronger defense, and an absolutely surging roster. Really, the Panthers are doing so well this season, and it's a shame that nobody saw it coming. Meanwhile, the Dolphins are basically done. They've been torn up from the inside out, and they are practically spent. The Panthers should have an easy win here.
Who will win: Panthers. The Dolphins' offense is still a bit strong, but it's succumbing to more trauma and injuries. Overall, the Dolphins are in the lowest place in football right now, and the Panthers are going to take advantage of it.
Overall: Panthers over Dolphins.

Jets vs. Ravens:
Who should win: Jets. I have absolutely no idea how, because if I did, I would tell the entire world, because they need to know at this point...but the Jets are winning numerous games this year. I know they have an even record right now, but they can't be counted out, for some reason.
Who will win: Ravens. Forget the whole 'Jets winning games' thing. The Ravens are still the Ravens, regardless of anything that's happened. Joe Flacco is still consistent as hell, and the defense is still incredibly intimidating, even to people that don't even play football. The Jets may be inexplicable in their sudden rise, but the Ravens aren't, and they're gonna shut down the Jets today (I hope).
Overall: Ravens over Jets.

Texans vs. Jaguars:
Who should win: Texans, because it looks like they're going to win.
Who will win: Jaguars, because the Texans can't win anything.
Overall: Jags over Texans.

Titans vs. Raiders:
Who should win: Titans. They have been doing alright most of the season, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is a reliable, if slightly misguided, arm. They could potentially win here, if everything aligns.
Who will win: Raiders. These are two subpar teams, but I'm picking the Raiders to win solely because they deserve it, and because this McGloin kid can actually throw the ball. It might be very close, and it could be a total misfire for Oakland, like usual, but I think they can actually win here.
Overall: Raiders over Titans.

Colts vs. Cardinals:
Who should win: Colts. The Colts are currently leading their division, and are actually doing very well, even with all the injuries that have taken place. Luck is a great QB as we all hoped. Unless the Cardinals do something completely unexpected, the Colts should take it.
Who will win: Colts. Regardless of anything Carson Palmer throws today, the Colts are the better team. Better offense, defense, younger QB. Palmer may absolutely stun today, but the Colts are probably going to come out on top anyway.
Overall: Colts over Cards.

Cowboys vs. Giants:
Jeez, this is like Sophie's Choice over here.
Who should win: Cowboys
Who will win: Giants, because I'm evil and I want to see the Eagles keep their lead for more than five seconds.
Overall: Giants over Cowboys.


Broncos vs. Patriots (The Highlander Game):Who should win: Broncos. The Patriots came out strong, and have lost a lot of crucial matchups this year, mostly due to the fact that this team is an aging one, one that isn't as good as it used to be, and one that is in danger of being lapped by the fricking Jets. Meanwhile, the Broncos only lost one game, and it was probably due to a lost bet by the former Indianapolis resident. I see the Broncos winning again, because that's what they're good at this season.
Who will win: Broncos. Last season, in this situation, I would have said that the whole thing would be cracked wide open by a Brady-to-Welker touchdown pass, maybe about 6 or 7 times. However, today I'll be rooting for Welker to get the ball from Manning, and to finally teach those fans in Foxboro that he's playing to actually win this year.
Overall: Broncos over Patriots. Also, Welker will crap in Belichick's coffee.


Redskins vs. 49ers:
Who should win: Niners
Who will win: Niners. Not even close, RG3. Not even close.
Overall: Niners over Redskins.

Well, this is sure to be a tough week. Hope at least some of it goes according to plan.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Problem Solved

The number one problem after Jorge Posada left the Bronx was that we needed a reliable, trusted catcher that didn't end up stinking up the joint in the end. Francisco Cervelli, Russell Martin, Austin Romine, Chris Stewart- all underperformed, for the most part. So going into 2014, we all knew that the catching situation was the biggest problem.

Problem solved. Welcome to the Bronx, Brian McCann.

In terms of a deal, this was a very good one. McCann's a consistent catcher, with some pretty huge seasons under his belt, and he only waned slightly in 2013, with an injury bringing him down. But, since the Braves have Evan Gattis to take over now, McCann will be perfect for stepping into the behind-the-plate spot in Yankee Stadium.

Personally, I think the deal is nice, however I'm a bit skeptical, as I don't want this to end up like Youkilis, and he won't hit or perform at all. I want him to have a big year in 2014, and I want him to totally reclaim the momentum he had in 2011, and the years before then.

Still, I'm very satisfied. But that's just one problem out of many, making this writer very satisfied that it's only November.

2 Hanger Boxes of 2013 Topps Update

It had been a few weeks since I've actually ripped product. Good news is I had some spare time, and some cash, so I stopped by Target and got 2 hangers. Hopefully I'll get something resembling a Puig rookie, or any of the big hot rookies in there.

Box 1-
94- Joba Chamberlain. Something I never thought I'd have to write about Joba Chamberlain: yes, folks. He's still playing.
61- Rafael Soriano, sadly not posed in his 'cap pointed up to heavens' stance.
387- Brandon Morrow
97- Alexi Amarista, featuring camo Padres unis.
69- Martin Perez
39- Scott Van Slyke, who was huge in 2012. Nice job getting there first, Topps.
284- Stephen Pryor
197- Josh Collmenter
201- Adam Ottavino
324- Chris Colabello RC
59- Hisashi Iwakuma AS
243- Marwin Gonzalez
253- Shelby Miller Rookie Debut. At least it's a rookie, but did it have to be a Cardinal?
88- Troy Tulowitzki AS
63- A pissed-off-looking Clay Buchholz, AS
28- Pedro Alvarez AS
31- Edwin Encarnacion AS
21- Junior Lake RC. He had an okay debut, but the Cubs ate it up.
58- KEVIN FRANDSEN GOLD #'D TO 2013! He may not be a starter, but he's a fun Phillie.
275- Bud Norris EMERALD SHINY
'71 mini of Ian Kinsler. Bwahaha. Yeah. Still on the Rangers.
Chasing History of TROY TULOWITZKI
Kyle Gibson Making their Mark insert
Gerrit Cole/Cutch Franchise Forerunners
147- Charlie Morton
310- Boone Logan. Jeez, we still have this guy?
182- Luis Valbuena
141- Chris Carter, the lone home run hitter in Houston.
115- Drew Stubbs.
7- Yoenis Cespedes Home Run Derby. Nice, seeing as he won.
114- Dustin Pedroia AS
68- Nick Franklin RC
175- Carlos Martinez RC
34- AJ Pollock.
172- Blake Parker in an awesome cubs throwback
322- Brandon Inge
311- Craig Stammen
262- Jayson Nix
280- John Lannan, who had 1 really good start for Philadelphia, then it all went downhill
123- Tom Gorzellany
246- Don Kelly
39- Shin-Soo Choo, who had an awesome season
84- Stephen Drew, who had a subpar season and got lucky.
195- Chris Johnson.
99- Derrick Robinson RC
184- Dioner Navarro. Yes, still playing.
119- King Felix AS
206- Reid Brignac
85- Pedro Strop
298- Luis Avilan. Man, a lot of crappy journeyman backups in this box.
151- Shawn Kelley
137- Yoervis Medina
191- Ricky Nolasco. Finally, someone I've heard of
47- Matt Garza
56- Kyuji Fujikawa RC
147- Charlie Morton
225- Chris Getz RED
310- Boone Logan RED
182- Luis Valbuena RED
141- Chris Carter RED
305- Dylan Axelrod
118- Joe Blanton
215- Travis Blackley
245- James Shields
101- Jonathan Villar
98- Salvador Perez AS
228- Matt Moore AS
326- Jake Peavy AS
131- Josh Phegley
227- Carlos Gonzalez AS
304- Patrick Corbin AS

Box 2-
2 doubles
102- Christian Friedrich
156- Laynce Nix
38- Denard Span
30- Mike Adams, who barely gave the Phils anything in 2013.
169- Ezequiel Carrera
298- Luis Avilan
321- Grant Green
313- MARIANO RIVERA ALL STAR! There ya go.
209- Anthony Swarzak
154- Kyle Gibson RC
13- Jose Fernandez Rookie Debut. That is pretty awesome.
199- Juan Lagares
89- Michael Pineda
320- Chris Archer, who had a nice ROY campaign
291- Logan Schafer
277- Sonny Gray, who had an excellent end of the season
138- Danny Salazar
225- Chris Getz GOLD #'D TO 2013
255- Alex Wood Emerald Shiny
Babe Ruth '71 mini, which is pretty nice
Bo Jackson Chasing History
Jean Segura Making Their Mark
Deion Sanders Postseason Heroes, which is pretty nice.
245- James Shields. Nice collation, Topps.
113- Samuel Deduno
259- Nolan Arenado
44- Jason Bay, who underwhelmed yet again
366- Jed Lowrie
2 doubles
120- Matt Tuiasosopo
136- Travis Hafner
330- OH, COME ON! The Puig Rookie Debut again. I can't get his damn rookie?
2 doubles
145- Michael Cuddyer AS
236- Shaun Marcum
263- Austin Romine
229- Jason Vargas
292- Zach Britton
328- Eric Sogard
65- Tatman
26- WIL MYERS...Rookie Debut. Because I am just getting effing shafted.
6- Joel Peralta
233- Anthony Rendon...ROOKIE EFFING DEBUT
4- Matt Adams
181-Oliver Perez. Still playing
148- Ben Zobrist AS
248- Jason Grilli AS
239- Justin Masterson AS
5 red versions of doubles.
32- Adeiny Hechavarria RC
161- Jim Henderson RC, looking like Chris Elliot.
155- J.B. Shuck
159- Donald Lutz
133- Jose Fernandez
100- Bryce Harper AS, bro
49- Marlon Byrd, still two teams behind.
51- Brett Marshall
132- Ronald Belasario
272- Josh Thole
3- Chad Qualls
211- Jarred Cosart

Well, no huge rookies, but....huge Rookie Debuts. Huh.

Friday, November 22, 2013

What happens when a villain switches lairs

I don't know if you've heard, but I hate David Freese. His presence in St. Louis ALONE made me root for the Red Sox this year.

David Freese is the single embodiment of scum and villainy, and he represents everything I hate about the Cardinals.

So what happens when he gets traded to the Angels?

I mean, this is kind of an odd move for Anaheim, as I never would have expected Freese ending up there, however half their team consists of those kind of moves. Freese will get along splendidly with Pujols, Hanson and Hamilton.

But, I'll be honest that I really don't know what to think. Like, half of what made Freese so awful for me is because he did all of those things while on the Cardinals. The other half was just him hitting homers at inopportune times, and being obnoxious about it. And now he's just not on the Cardinals. Even worse, it's a team I'm indifferent about, the Angels.

So...I'm gonna wait until he actually plays in an Angels uniform to really form an opinion. If he's the same old Freese, then he's still #1 on the list of least favorite players. If he actually manages to become a respectable, non-awful ballplayer...Cody Ross, you're back on top.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Some of the stuff you're going to see this offseason, people will totally see coming. You'll see Brian Wilson land on the A's or something, and some poor fella will be the one to say "called it". Or when Robbie Cano lands somewhere else (hopefully not Detroit or Texas), somebody will say they knew where.

I will be 100% honest in saying that I did not see this coming. In fact, the first time I saw the headline, I thought it was a joke.

Seriously. I knew Kinsler would be going somewhere, but FIELDER? Like, Prince Fielder, who was one of the stars of the Tigers and someone who should have stuck there for longer than two years? I mean, that just hit HARD.

I originally remarked that the Tigers did not even need Fielder, and that somebody who actually needed him should have gotten him. Texas' 1st baseman last season was Mitch Moreland, so you could say then needed a first baseman. So there. Finally came true.

If this is evident of how the offseason's going to be, it's going to be pretty wild.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

First Big Move of the Offseason

After being a staple of the Braves' rotation for the better part of a decade, Tim Hudson has decided to return to the West Coast, where it all began. Today, he signed a deal to pitch for the Giants next year, not too far from where he made his big break in Oakland.

I always thought of Hudson as a Brave, because when I got in collecting, he was just starting out with them, and as all these other Braves pitchers (Jair Jurrjens, Mike Hampton, Tommy Hanson, Billy Wagner) all left the "current roster pitchers" binder, Hudson stayed. And now, after a good 5 years of securing the primary spot in the Braves section of the binder, I'll have to move him to near the middle of Braves section of the "current player in old uniform" binder. Because that's how my collection works.

Even though he never played for my team, I know what Hudson meant to Braves fans, and I know for a fact that he'll be missed.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Football Predictions: Week 11

This card is awesome, and it signifies the fact that the Chiefs are absolutely killing things this year, which they deserve, after having an awful season last year. Today they have one of the toughest matchups of the year. It could make or break them. Then again, it's just another one of the games I have to predict.

Jets vs. Bills:
Who should win: Jets. How about the sudden ascent of the Jets, from being the worst team in the league to suddenly being awesome. The Bills have had their own decline, losing EJ Manuel and a lot more games. Now that the Jets have reestablished their awesomeness, they should probably win again here.
Who will win: Jets. The Jets just received Ed Reed, which would be another way of making their defense even stronger than it already was. Now that Reed has a team that he will (hopefully) enjoy playing on, there will be more possibilities to do the same amount of ass-kicking he had with Baltimore. And this is the perfect game to start.
Overall: Jets over Bills.

Ravens vs. Bears:
Oooh, this is a tough one.
Who should win: Ravens. Honestly, I'm only saying this because this is the team that should be winning here. You have an oddly declining Bears team, an oddly declining Ravens team, and a game that will probably be as close as last week's Ravens game. However, I'm saying the Ravens look worthy of a win here.
Who will win: Bears. The Bears have more talent, and tougher players this year than the Ravens, who are only 4-5 because they lost their two biggest defensive threats. It honestly could go either way, but I'm saying the Bears will take it.
Overall: Bears over Ravens, though I imagine it will be very close.

Browns vs. Bengals:
Who should win: Bengals, because they are headlining a very tough division, and a win here would break the division wide open. Besides, they are one of the best teams in the AFC, and I can only imagine what would happen if they make the playoffs.
Who will win: Bengals. Now that the whole October haze has settled, the Browns are easier to beat, and a much less difficult team. I know that they can still surprise on many occasions, yet I don't think today is going to be one of them.
Overall: Bengals over Browns.

Redskins vs. Eagles:
Who should win: Eagles. I know this is putting a lot of pressure on them, but now that the Eagles have a great quarterback, and now that the team has confidence after mowing down one of the best teams in the NFC, they are becoming one of the more underrated threats in the league. Today they play a team that got lucky three times. I doubt they will get lucky again this week.
Who will win: Eagles. And yes, I know what I'm asking for in predicting the Eagles will win, because they rarely ever. It's impossible to predict exactly what the Eagles will do, because they never seem to do it. Thankfully, Chip Kelly's back to throwing down, and hopefully this matchup will be another win for Philly, because dammit, it needs one.
Overall: Eagles over Skins.

Lions vs. Pittsburgh:
Ooh, lemme act like this is gonna be close.
Who should win: Lions, because they are one of the best teams in the NFC right now.
Who will win: Lions, because the Steelers aren't necessarily gonna make it a difficult one.
Overall: Lions over Steelers.

Falcons vs. Buccaneers:
Who should win: Falcons. I know it's a stretch to say the Falcons can win anything this season, and I know they've really disappointed, and I know they're the NFC version of Houston, but hear me out. They still have more assets than a fledgling Tampa team, especially one with a rookie quarterback who is destined for a permanent backup position somewhere else.
Who will win; Falcons. This is really common sense. Even if the Falcons have lost so many games to so many lesser teams, and even if they're really crapped it out, they come nowhere near the ineptitude of the Bucs. Nowhere close.
Overall: Falcons over Bucs.

Cardinals vs. Jaguars:
Oh gosh, another really boring matchup.
Who should win: Cardinals I guess, judging by their record being actually kinda good and better than the Jags'.
Who will win: Cardinals, because they're playing the Jags, and it's very, very easy to take a win away from the Jags.
Overall: Cardinals over Jaguars.

Raiders vs. Texans:Who should win: Raiders. I know this is a stretch, but the Raiders right now are the better team. The Texans are absolutely going downhill, and there is really no shot of them putting together anything short of a failure. I mean, they're trying, I'll give them that, but the Raiders might actually have a chance to come out on top.
Who will win: Texans. The Raiders will be playing without Terrelle Pryor today. The injury that broke the Raider's back, it seems.
Overall: Texans over Raiders, embarrassingly.


Chargers vs. Dolphins:
Who should win: Chargers. The Dolphins have been slumping terribly lately, and it couldn't come at a worse time for the organization. The whole Jonathan Martin thing is a scary affair, and as someone who's been bullied before, I totally understand why it's so heartbreaking. Meanwhile, the Dolphins are against a team that is probably better than them, with no turmoil in the last few weeks.
Who will win: Chargers. Unless the Network calls into the Chargers' office and tells them to throw the game because they want to televise a huge Miami win and make it inspirational and throw a puppy in there and everything, this should be another win for Philip Rivers.
Overall: Chargers vs. Dolphins. No puppies.

49ers vs. Saints:
Who should win: The Saints, because they've overcome so much this year already, and have stepped back up to the top again to become one of the better teams in the NFC. Of course, they are playing against the Niners, who are usually pretty damn tough, though I imagine they'll be able to slide through.
Who will win: Saints. This game will be incredibly close. Two standout defenses against each other. Two landmark offenses against each other. Two awesome quarterbacks against each other. A batcrap crazy coach against a less batcrap crazy coach. Honestly, I'm only putting the Saints here because I like them better, but it could really go either way.
Overall: Saints over Niners, by a few points.

Packers vs. Giants:
Who should win: Giants. The Giants have won three straight. The Packers have lost two straight. The Packers are without their best QB, and the Giants are with their best QB, only he throws a lot of interceptions. It really looks like the Giants could actually take this one...
Who will win: Packers. However, that's exactly what the Packers WANT you to think. They could actually have a really nice game, so long as the backup throws to the right people, and still puts on a great performance regardless of the circumstances. It might be the other way, but dammit, I want it to be this way.
Overall: Packers over Giants. Manning throws a hissy fit and runs out of Jersey in Archie's car.

Vikings vs. Seahawks:
Who should win; Seahawks, because they are the best team in the NFC.
Who will win: Seahawks, because they're playing the Minnesota Vikings.
Overall: Hawks over Vikings.

Chiefs vs. Broncos:
Who should win: Broncos. Regardless of their one loss, Peyton Manning has commandeered one of the strongest teams in the league, and has already built them up to be a definite playoff team, and a definite Super Bowl favorite, and it's only November. Really, the only time they lost was when Andrew Luck had an amazing game. Therefore...
Who will win: Chiefs. Alex Smith is going to have the best game of his career today. I mean, he has to. If not, the Broncos win. Smith needs to really push himself, and his team, if they wanna defeat these guys, because it is not easy. I think the Chiefs will finally become a 10-0 team. I honestly hope so.
Overall: Chiefs over Broncos.


Patriots vs. Panthers:
Who should win: Patriots, because this is what everybody thinks is going to happen.
Who will win: Panthers, because this is what should happen if this is supposed to be an awesome season. Come on, Cam. Don't let me down.
Overall: Panthers over Patriots.

So, those are my predictions. Hope at least some of them come true today.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Football Custom of the Night: Gordon Edition

This one's a few weeks old, and it's from back when the Browns were still riding high on their streak (only in 2013, folks), but I'm posting it anyway. This Browns team is too quirky and fun not to go uncustomed.

I mean, I'm not saying they're playoff bound, because they had a few weeks where they were winning games left and right, and were really awesome. Josh Gordon had some nice touchdowns, and for whatever reason, the Browns played unlike the Browns.

Now, of course, they've come back to Earth, and they've continued playing like the Browns usually do: putting up a gallant effort and coming up short in the end. At least they had the beginning of the season. Also, at least they have more wins than Tampa.

Coming Tomorrow- Predictions post, with an awesome looking Chiefs custom.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

More Correct Calls on the MVP results

 Man oh man, was this a predictable awards week or what? No last minute swoops by other people, no bias by sportswriters. The right people won every award, which is pretty nice. Cutch definitely deserved his MVP this year, as he's become one of the best players in the game, and definitely one of the most fun.
Miggy deserved his repeat, because he IS the best player in baseball right now. Nobody else comes close. He's owning the hitting aspect of the game, and the 2 straight MVPs are proving this.

Congrats to every award winner this week.

A bit late, but CY YOUNGS!!

Both of these were kinda predictable this year, which is rare. I mean usually there's a heavy favorite in one of these awards that doesn't win, but so far the clear favorites are taking it. Kershaw definitely deserved it, as he was by far the best pitcher in baseball this year (again).

Scherzer was like the R.A. Dickey of the year, in that he had a truly excellent season, and he may not ever get back to this height again, but we're happy he's here. Also, people saw this coming, with that amazing 20+ win season.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Lost Customs of '09: Nomar Edition

It's a bit infuriating that Topps never gave Nomar Garciaparra a card with the A's, or even a final tribute. It's even more infuriating that he never got a card in 2007 Topps or 2008 Topps either. Because of contract issues (read:bullcrap), his last Topps card was 2006 Update. And even as a Yankee fan, I still grew up knowing that Nomar was one of the biggest stars in the game, and I needed finality. I needed an ending. One of these days I'll customize a 2009 Topps card, but a 2009 custom is good enough.

It's mind boggling how I never made a custom of him in 2009, seeing as how I was still obsessed with his still playing. Either way, he gets a custom now, even though it's unlikely that he'll ever be a Hall of Famer, or remembered anywhere other than Fenway Park or Backyard Baseball.

Still, at least he has a custom.

Monday, November 11, 2013

ROYs: Obvious Choices

 Really, these two ROYs, if you really thought about it, were very, very obvious. I mean, aside from the whole 'Yasiel Puig' thing, which really couldn't have gone unnoticed, the Yasiel Puig dynasty lasted from mid-June to July, and then dipped for a while. Jose Fernandez had a consistent, masterful season, and for that reason alone it was obvious in my eyes that he'd get it. Not even Shelby Miller could come close, as much as Cardinals fans wanted him to.
Myers...nobody was even touching Myers' lead with a 20 foot pole. Toward the end Chris Archer was getting closer, but even Chris Archer knew that Wil Myers had it. It was pretty obvious.

Still, at least those two are out of the way. Onto the really ambiguous ones...

So long, Grandy

It was fun. I mean, you never turned out to be Dave Winfield like we all thought, but it was still pretty fun.

 After all, there's always the 2011 season, and parts of the 2012 season. There's always the years when you were on your game, and when we were good. There's always the 2010 playoffs, the 2012 playoffs..
It's just sad that you decided that you won't be playing for the Yankees next year, because I really can't imagine anywhere else you could go. It'll really suck next year, seeing you play for another team. But I'll always have the memories, as will all Yankee fans.

Thanks for four good years, Curtis. It was a pleasure.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Football Predictions: Week 10

Today, my dad is out in East Rutherford, hoping his Raiders will be able to do to the Giants what everybody except for two teams has done to the Giants. Meanwhile, I'm stuck at home, with a crappy throat, a load of homework, and a crisis I doubt I'm ever gonna share with you people. I'm just in a really crappy mood today, and I don't know that football's gonna save it. At least it'll try.

Let's get on with the predictions.


Seahawks vs. Falcons:
Who Should Win: Seahawks. The Hawks, while not absolutely killing it, are still playing really, really well this year. Russell Wilson is becoming one of the best young quarterbacks, and the offensive line is still strong on a consistent basis. We're looking at a playoff team if they keep it up. They'll probably win today.
Who will win: Seahawks. The thing about the Falcons is that while they were very close to being a Super Bowl caliber team last year, they really had nothing to put themselves over the edge. This year, whoever they had that was good enough to take them to the NFC Champs have already left, and they have a diminished, weaker, not-as-good squad. The Seahawks are probably going to prove that today.
Overall: Seahawks over Falcons.

Lions vs. Bears:
Who Should win: Bears. They're coming off a victory over Green Bay, and they still have everything they began the season with, with the exception of Jay Cutler and a few other guys I'm forgetting. Cutler may have been the biggest piece for them, but last week they proved they can win without him.
Who will win: Lions. Yet, the Bears probably won't do it again. The Lions, even though that division is deadlocked, will probably come out on top, despite their recent slump. Stafford's having a really nice season, too.
Overall: Lions over Bears (oh my!)

EAGLES VS. PACKERS (aka Jordan Team 2 vs. Jordan Team 1):
Who should win: Packers. Right now the Packers have the more superior record, and they have the more consistent team. What they don't have is Aaron Rodgers, which might make today a very, very hard game to win, especially considering how much the Eagles want to win today. It'll be close, but in terms of who I want to win, the Packers.
Who will win: Oh gosh, this is tough, because you have a flawed team against a great team with Seneca Wallace at the helm. I'm giving this to the EAGLES, surprisingly, because I'm not entirely sure that Seneca can pull this off. I'm not saying that it's likely to happen, I'm saying that it's probably going to, though I could be WAYYYY off. I don't care.
Overall: Eagles over Packers. Really.

Jaguars vs. Titans:
Who should win: Titans
Who will win: Titans.
Come on, make it hard, guys!
Overall: Titans over Jaguars, a million to 0.

Rams vs. Colts:
Who should win: Colts. They have the stronger team, the better record, and a surging Andrew Luck. Besides, their team should not by any means be working; a team full of young, underdeveloped stars are having a nice record right now. And that should continue
Who will win: Colts. Right now, the Rams are slowly beginning to come down from the early season pedestal, and the Colts are beginning to take action. So, if the Rams play exactly like they've played in the last few weeks, this should be another victory for Luck.
Overall: Colts over Rams.

Raiders vs. Giants:
Who should win: Raiders, because my dad is there, and I really don't want him to be disappointed.
Who will win: Giants, because these are the Raiders we're talking about here.
Overall: Giants over Raiders. This'll be a very depressing car ride home.

Bills vs. Steelers:
Who should win: Oh gosh, this matchup is so boring. I'll just say the Bills here, because they had a lot of potential, and they won the last time they played. And I really don't want the Steelers to win this one, because the Steelers are worse than death, and blah.
Who will win: Steelers, because absolutely nothing goes the way I want it to.
Overall: Steelers over Bills.

Bengals vs. Ravens:
Who should win: Bengals, because right now they are one of the best teams in the AFC. They have one of the best quarterbacks, they have a great offense, and they are doing practically everything right. If everything goes according to plan today, Dalton should get another win, and he deserves one at this point.
Who will win: Bengals, although I see this becoming a very close game. You have a team that defined last season going up against one of the best teams from this year. Of course it will be close, as both teams have so much to prove, and both teams really need a win here, as it will impact the rest of the season. Honestly, the Bengals are probably going to win either in overtime or on a blown ref call. Or I'm really wrong here.
Overall: Bengals over Ravens. By a chinhair.


Panthers vs. 49ers:
Who should win: Niners. Forget for a second that these are the same Panthers that defied all odds and actually started being good this year. Forget that for a second. They are playing the Niners, and this is a team that is every ounce as tough as they were last year. Every goddamn ounce. This should be another victory for a Harbaugh.
Who will win: Niners. I really have nothing else to say here, so I'll say that if you want a real treat, find Jim Harbaugh's Sound Effects reels from NFL Network. Whenever they wire that guy, it's gold, because 75% of it is him yelling. My fave: "Delay of game?!?!?...........WHAATT!?"
Overall: Niners over Panthers.

Texans over Cardinals:
Who should win: Texans, because they think they're so tough.
Who will win: Cardinals, because they aren't really.
Overall: Cards over Texans.

Broncos vs. Chargers:
Who should win: Broncos. Even if everybody's beginning to get injured, and even if they may not be as awesome as they were when the season started, they are playing a team that they can definitely beat, and they are still the Denver Broncos.
Who will win: Broncos. As okay as the Chargers are, this is Philip Rivers in a good season, taking on Peyton Manning in any season.
Overall: Broncos over Chargers.

8 PM Game

Cowboys vs. Saints:
Who should win: Saints, because they are so much better than the Cowboys. You have Drew Brees, who is a borderline Hall of Famer, you have a great offense, a great defense. And this is going up against Tony Romo, and a bunch of people who think they're great because they have a better record than the Eagles.
Who will win: Saints. See above.
Overall: Saints over Cowboys.


Dolphins vs. Buccaneers:'re serious?
Who should and will win: Dolphins.
Overall: Dolphins over Bucs.

So, those are my predictions. Hope at least half of them are right.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Lost Customs of 2009: Martinez Edition

Pedro Martinez, if he plays his cards right, will eventually be done up in bronze next to all those other great Red Sox pitchers in Cooperstown. That decision is a few years away, but I'm optimistic that he'll end up in the Hall, because he deserves it. From 1994 to 2005, he was one of the best pitchers in the major leagues.

I'm proud that he got to end his career, not only with the Philadelphia Phillies, but as a member of a world series squad. And yes, I realize that the man has a ring with another squad, but he got to pitch in Game 2 of the 2009 World Series, as well as Game 6. And I was lucky enough to attend Game 2 (I will never tell you how, only hinting that it involves an ESPN columnist and friend), and see Pedro Martinez pitch live. And he's awesome.

My only regret is that he went out of baseball with a whimper instead of a bang. Nobody re-signed him in 2010, and he never got a 2010 Topps card, which he totally deserved. He just sorta vanished, and turned up as a Red Sox hall of famer or something. And I guess he deserves this custom, more than the other one, which, admittedly, was an early effort.

I'll try to do more of these, but I need to make some, and tomorrow's going to be very busy indeed. So, I'll see what I can do there.

Football Custom of the Morning: Jennings Edition

I thought, seeing as the Vikings were crap for most of this season, that I'd never get to post this card. However, they squeaked past the Redskins a few days ago, and now I get to post a card of a former Packer that betrayed me.

Believe me, there have been worse. Ahman Green went and became one of the stars of a barren Texans lineup. Bubba Franks stranded himself in Cleveland. Worst of all, Darren Sharper found his way onto a Super Bowl winning roster, albeit a year before the Packers made it.

But there's something about Jennings' jumping of the ship that stings, slightly. Maybe it was how good he was with the Packers. Maybe it was how he got injured halfway through last season. Maybe it was the fact that he's still doing alright this season, given the circumstances.

Whatever the case, I'll still remember the days of his Packers years, and his time when I didn't hate him as much.

Coming Tomorrow- Football Predictions. I forget who the headliner is. Probably another former Packer.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Mr. Thomas Will Now Take Your Questions

(This is Round Two of Nachos Grande's Blogger Bracket Contest. I have somehow made it to the Final Eight. Hopefully this post would ensure that this silly train keeps on rolling.)

On June 16th, 1997, Frank Thomas, adorned in an old-school White Sox throwback, addressed the crowd. He preceded this by saying he had a very important announcement to make, one that would shake the foundations of the team's already-awful season.

The following is a transcript of said press conference.

FRANK THOMAS: Ladies and Gentlemen, kind, distinguished members of the press...I am here to make the announcement that I feared I would never have to make, as...I love this team, and I will forever be a member of the Chicago White Sox...but as of today, June 16th, 1997, I, Frank Thomas, am announcing my retirement from major league baseball.
(The crowd of reporters are absolutely stunned, and confused)
I'll be open to take any questions.
REPORTER: Yeah, are you absolutely serious??
FRANK THOMAS: Look, I know this is a shocking announcement, but I've come to the decision that, after two decades with the team, I feel that it's time to move on.
REPORTER: Frank, you're 29 years old. Shouldn't that be a bit too soon to retire?
FRANK THOMAS: I realize it may seem like it's the wrong time, but for me, I've done everything I can for the team, and it's just time for me to do something else with my life.
REPORTER: Yeah, what exactly are you going do now that you' 29?
FRANK THOMAS: I've been training for the past few months to become a member of the U.S. Synchronized Swimming Team.
(Now several confused reporters leave the press conference, absolutely dumbfounded)
This has been a secret passion of mine for a while, and now I have to go through with it, because now I'll have a lot more free time.
REPORTER: Does it concern you that you have no prior experience in the field of swimming?
FRANK THOMAS: It doesn't concern me. I mean, I've followed synchronized swimming for so many years, that I feel like it's about time for me to step into the game. I mean, the way I see it, it's's like an inchworm. An inchworm that has spent its whole life being an inchworm, biding its time. And all its life, this inchworm has wanted to be a water buffalo.
(now more reporters leave, having no idea what the hell is going on)
And right now, I'm the inchworm, and I wanna go ahead and start being a water buffalo. And I don't care how good at being an inchworm I am. I don't care what anyone says. I'm just gonna do the water buffalo thing for a while, see how that turns out.
REPORTER: Frank, isn't this a bit misguided seeing as you'll be a 240 lb. synchronized swimmer?
FRANK THOMAS: You know, this hadn't occurred to me until last week. My shrink brought it up. He also asked me what the hell I was thinking, and being a psychiatrist, he should kinda know that already. But yeah, I know I'll be one of the largest synchronized swimmers out there, but I really don't care. Besides, once I'm out of Comiskey, I'll probably drop about 20 pounds.
REPORTER: Should this be seen as a betrayal to the South Side?
FRANK THOMAS: Certainly not. As much as I love baseball, I feel like I want to do something risky and ridiculous that I've never tried more than I want to do something people pay me to be amazing at.
(He realizes what he just said, ponders it, but then nods and stands by it).
REPORTER: Does this move have anything to do with the White Sox' awful start this year?
FRANK THOMAS: No, not necessarily. It has nothing to do with the fact that the Cubs just swamped us, or the fact that our 2nd-best hitter is Harold Baines. It's just...I feel like they can finish this without me. Terry Bevington's got it all under control.
REPORTER: And what of the news that Bevington just signed on to be the Coach for the U.S. Synchronized Swimming team?
FRANK THOMAS: (Stunned silence) Uhhh...he did that? Well, then....I take back everything I just said. Go White Sox. Don't do drugs, kids.
(Thomas darts offstage quickly).
(Suddenly, White Sox Coach Terry Bevington comes into the press conference)
TERRY BEVINGTON: Okay, seriously, guys. WHY'D YOU HAVE TO TELL HIM? That was gonna be a surprise gift! You guys are no fun!
(he sighs)
I guess I have to go coach people I've never worked in a sport I've never coached before now....and this is all your fault.
FRANK THOMAS: (from offscreen) YEAH, HOW ABOUT NO?!?


(Dear gosh, I hope people appreciate this saga of ridiculousness)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Lost Customs of 2009: Randy Johnson

When I started customizing, it was 2009, and I was just doing the players that were hot, that were the stories of that day. I didn't take into account all the people that would be retired or with another team within the next few years, so there were a lot of customs I never made, yet wanted to years after. Four years later, I'm finally doing the ones I missed from 2009, using photos from 2009. So, I'm calling these the 'Lost Customs', because I really needed something to do during the offseason.

Randy Johnson played his last season in 2009, and while his numbers weren't spectacular, his highest achievement of the year was FINALLY hitting 300 strikeouts, and going out with a milestone. Johnson's name will come up for the Hall of Fame ballot in 2015. There is no question, he's getting in.

I'll try and do these consistently, though I don't know how often. Expect a veteran pitcher who ended his career with the Phillies.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

How I feel about 2014 Topps Archives

For some reason, in 2013 the blog became less about baseball cards and more about baseball in general. I bought less packs, ranted less about Topps, and really spoke less about the overall industry. To be honest, I really don't know why that happened. I just got caught up in customs and stuff, and never really had a big 'hey, let's talk about how awful Topps is doing' post.

Until now.

A few days ago, Topps released info on 2014 Topps Archives Baseball. This was a set I had been both fearing and eagerly awaiting. The fear was that it would be a dull, sloppily-put-together, forgettable set that only I would enjoy. However, if they kept it going, I would definitely buy packs, and make sure I had my say on which sets were chosen.

It turns out that 1973 Topps, 1980 Topps, 1986 Topps and 1989 Topps are going to be the sets chosen for this year's set.

Allow me to react accordingly.

1. 1980 Topps was used two years ago in 2011 Archives. SO WHY USE IT AGAIN? I mean, I get that it's an easy set to do, but there's no point in repeating a set like that, when you could simply grab another one. It's not that hard, Topps. I can name five off the top of my head that would be better than a repeat. 1981, 1977, 1976, 1978, 1983. Boom. Roasted.
2. In terms of the 80's sets you used, why those two? They're a little...weak. Like, I'm not saying I'm as mad as I was about redoing 1980, but you could have done better. 1989 Topps isn't necessarily my favorite, and you could have easily redone 1988 or 1987, which are much cooler. However, I doubt you even remember how to do the 1988 design. 1986 I'm cool with, so long as it retains its 80's-ness.
3. I like the 1973 idea, but I hate the fact that there are five dynamite Topps sets immediately after that one that Topps is ignoring for Archives.
4. I'm getting a stinging feeling that they're gonna take what was a good set last year, and do something awful that I haven't thought of.

I mean, this is one of my favorite sets Topps has done, and yet it's so unoriginal, and so restricted, it's all they CAN bring back. I remember 6 years ago they'd do sets like Turkey Red and things that weren't so restricted, thanks to new licenses. It frustrates me that this is what it's come to, and they still haven't done anything about this.

I guess all I can do is just wait for the product, and hope it's awesome.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Football Predictions: Week 9

Halfway over. The season is officially halfway over. THINK about that for a second.

Only 9 weeks ago, the NFL season was still being used in future tense. People were still talking about the Lions like there was no chance in hell. People were still thinking the Bucs had a shot. Strange times.

Today, once again, I will attempt to boldly predict the outcomes of the upcoming NFL games. Judging by the amount of wrong I would have been had I predicted Thursday night's game, I'm predicting that today will be a doozy.


Chiefs vs. Bills:
Who should win: Chiefs. At the beginning of the season, I talked about how promising the Bills' season looked under EJ Manuel. I'm beginning to believe I jinxed them. Meanwhile, the Chiefs have been doing an unbelievable job, and they could actually have a shot to win it all down the road. Which is rare for Andy Reid. As for today, they should be able to win here.
Who will win: Chiefs. The Bills have been depleted on all accounts. With a few exceptions, the Chiefs have a lot of the parts that made them great to begin with. Also, they easily outmatch the Bills. This one should be easy.
Overall: Chiefs over Bills, wide margin.

Vikings vs. Cowboys:
Who should win: Cowboys. If someone were to ask you at the beginning of the season who would end up leading the NFC East halfway through, you would have gotten three answers that are not the Dallas Cowboys. Now look at 'em go. You have a Cowboys team that is defying all expectations, and a Viking team that is ruining all expectations. The Cowboys should have this one.
Who will win: Cowboys. The Vikings have gone through 2 or 3 mediocre QBs in the past few weeks, with only the least objectionable being the starter this week. Ponder has a lot riding on his shoulders, as he's dealing with a non-magical AP, a depleted offensive line, and a team that is probably going to beat them. Good luck, buddy.
Overall: Cowboys over Vikings. I know this doesn't help my Eagles at all, but they're still kinda in it.

Titans vs. Rams:
Oh gosh, this is so boring!
Who should win: Rams
Who will win: Titans.
There. Fixed it. Threw in some unpredictability, some uncertainty. That one should be fine.
Overall: Titans over Rams in a squeaker. No pressure, Locker.

Saints vs. Jets:
Who should win: Saints. Boy, those Jets don't follow directions well. When people want them to win, they lose. When people want them to lose, they win. When they want Mark Sanchez to stay healthy, he gets injured in the preseason. It's a very backwards team. Meanwhile, the Saints have been doing pretty well for themselves this season. Like, they're an early favorite to win it all. So today should go their way.
Who will win; Saints. Lemme look at this closely. You have one of the stronger defenses in the NFL against an offense filled with rookies. You have one of the more consistent offenses in the NFL versus Nick Mangold and a couple other guys. It seems kinda predictable out of the gate.
Overall: Saints over Jets.

Chargers vs. Redskins:
Who should win: Ooh, tough one. I will go with Chargers, because they seem promising enough out of the gate, and they seem like they could potentially win this one.
Who will win: Redskins, because I know they loooove defying my expectations. I mean, this also kinda dooms my Eagles, but really, at this point they're just dooming themselves.
Overall: Redskins over Chargers.

Falcons vs. Panthers:
Who should win: Falcons. This is one of the toughest matchups of the week, because, really, either team could win with this. The Falcons are strong enough to walk through, but the Panthers have been surging lately, and they are currently hot. The Falcons should be the projected pick, however...
Who will win: Panthers. Cam Newton's comeback has been a perplexing one, but a promising one nonetheless. I feel like these Panthers are strong enough to take down Matt Ryan, because the Falcons haven't been doing too well this season. At this point, if the Panthers win, I won't be surprised.
Overall: Panthers over Falcons.


Eagles vs. Raiders:
Who should win: Eagles. Oh my effing gosh is this a matchup. An epic battle of patheticness. Which QB will out-wimp the other? Will Shady out-disappoint McFadden? This is a hell of a game, though I feel like the Eagles have the best shot at winning. Why? Because they always have the best shot at winning. Because every game seems like it's going to be easy, only for the other team to absolutely wreck them. Therefore...
Who will win: Raiders. Yes, I am predicting the mighty Oakland Raiders, whose last consistent quarterback was Rich Gannon (and we all know what happened to him), to upset my beloved Birds. Why? Because sometimes you can just see the disappointment coming a mile away.
Overall: Raiders over Eagles. Chip Kelly's sigh will resemble Andy Reid's.

Buccaneers vs. Seahawks:
Are you freaking kidding me?
Who should win: Seahawks
Who will win; Seahawks.
I mean, come on. Gimme a break, guys!
Overall: Hawks over Bucs. 48,0000 to 3. Although that's assuming a lot for the kicker.

Ravens vs. Browns:
Who should win: Ravens. We are talking about the defending Super Bowl champions against a Cinderella team whose clock struck midnight two weeks ago. Really, this should be no contest.
Who will win; Ravens, but maybe in a closer match than I expect. Both teams have great offenses and defenses, to the point where the game will likely be a low scoring one. However, the Ravens have something the Browns do not, other than consistency and a Super Bowl ring: a steady, reliable Quarterback. Joe Flacco is a boss, and I'm not just saying that because he's local, and because we share a barber (no, really!). When he's on, he's really on. Don't let the ring fool you, he's really that good.
Overall: Ravens over Browns.

Steelers vs. Patriots:
Can I say neither? No? Ah, well in that case...
Who should win: Patriots
Who will win: Patriots, unless something absolutely catastrophic (or awesome) happens.
Overall: Pats over Steelers. No wonder they did this matchup a few days after Halloween.

8: 30 GAME

Colts vs. Texans:
Who should win: Colts. The Colts are a slowly rising team, and tonight they are playing a slowly falling Texans team, who are so desperate that this writer thinks that maybe they should see if David Carr is busy.
Who will win: Colts. Logistically speaking, the Texans also have no shot. I know they have a nice defense, but it would have been nicer had they all stayed healthy. The Colts offense is quick, young, and reliable, even in Reggie Wayne's absence. Tonight should be a fun one for Indianapolis.
Overall: Colts over Texans.

Monday Night:

Da Bears vs. Packers:
I already know George Wendt's opinion, so here's mine:
Who should win: Packers. They are one of the toughest teams in the NFC North right now, which says something, because that division is overstuffed. The Bears are ruthless, but since Cutler's hurt, their star is fading slightly, and the Packers look like they'll crush 'em this week.
Who will win: Packers. Assuming Josh McCown will start for them tomorrow ...BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!
Overall: Packers over Da Bearss.

Well, those are my predictions. Hope some of them are accurate.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Please vote for me!

Seriously! The Nachos Grande contest I'm involved in just opened voting, and there are about three days to go. I'm up against someone who is just as good, if not better, at writing, yet I'm having so much fun with this contest that I don't want it to end.

So please! Head to Nachos Grande, find Group F's poll on the sidebar, and vote for me (Jordan). It would be greatly appreciated, and I swear it'll amount to more awesome posts!