Yup. It’s back, folks. That time of year that completely monopolizes your everyday life as you sit and check the likes of Rotoworld and Bleacher Report on an hourly basis. Fantasy football season is abound!
I have already summonsed the Wayniac Nation Fantasy Football team, and next week will be our Second Annual Breakthroughs, Busts and Sleepers Special. I got excited sending out the email to the team, I hope you are excited to see what they have to say.
But that’s next week. Today, I have a question that needs to be answered. Is there a new era in fantasy football?
Nomi the Greek and myself spent Wednesday up in Flowery Branch watching some Falcons football and doing a little fantasy recruiting for the upcoming season. What it really comes down to is that we both had the shakes from a lack of NFL action, and Falcons training camp was the perfect cure.
I have asked my brother to be a contributor on the Wayniac Nation for a long time. Due to his busy work schedule and the fact that he travels around the world at will, he has always said, “Leave me alone.” Well, it turns out that every year, he sends an email to his friends predicting the first round of the NFL Draft. This year, he let me read his traditional email.
Well, brother, you may have yet again not wanted to write for Wayniac Nation, but the email made me chuckle. So I took it and turned it into an article. You may have not wanted to be a part of The Nation, but today, I inadvertently welcome you aboard The Wayniac Nation. Enjoy draft fans! Take it away, little bro:
We are just days away from the biggest and best single game of the year. Whether you watch it for the commercials, or as an excuse to gamble, or because you want to see what Tom Brady and his balls, Super Sunday will have the attention of the entire nation. Of course, it has grabbed The Thread’sattention.
Last year, The Thread made their Wayniac Nation debut in the first ever Super Bowl prediction special. Nomi the Greek and Sperry (now Sperry Mason as he pursues his law degree) were right on in their Seahawks prediction, while the rest of us struggled. This year has seen the addition of three new members to The Thread. Nick the Greek is Nomi’s cousin. He lives in Detroit Lions country, but his allegiance is to the Dirty Birds. Mark.9 the Game is the youngest member of The Thread. He may, however, have the coolest job out of all of us. Jaybird does one of two things: works or reads/watches sports. At this point, I may as well make Olde Blind Dog part of The Thread, since their entire bartending staff writes for the site anyway!
Well, folks, Tom Brady and the Patriots have gone out and made some noise yet again in the world of football. Thats for another place and another time, however. We have more important things to discuss.
Last night, Michael Irvin and Cris Carter went round by round in picking their 2015 Fantasy Pro Bowl teams. It’s a great twist on a game that has been rather ho-hum for most of its existence. Maybe we can do the same.
If you have been following Wayniac Nation from day one, you know we like to have some fun. We don’t do things the run-of-the-mill way. Whether it be comparing every horse in the Belmont Stakes to a Batman movie or picking the THE ALL-TIME FICTIONAL HOOPIDITY DOOPITY ALLY OOPITY BASKETBALL MOVIE TEAM (it’s right HERE if you forgot it), we are always trying to have fun.
What we are going to start doing today is “drafting” the All Time Over Inflated Football Movie Roster. The rules will be the same as in the basketball and baseball (if you forgot the baseball team, it’s right HERE). The players have to be fictional. They can’t be actors playing real players in a bio pic, but it can be athletes playing a made up character. Likenesses of real players make the cut, so all of the players in The Replacements (which was loosely based on the 1987 NFL strike) are in play.
What we are going to do differently this time around is put each position to a vote. Normally I would break down each character and pick, but I think it’s time for Wayniac Nation to get involved. So clear your schedule and get your Netflix ready. Today, the Nation will name the greatest fictional Quarterback in movie history!
Some of you have requested it. Most of you know I wouldn’t keep my mouth shut about it. Ray Lewis has said the dumbest thing so far in this new year.
Lewis made some noise yesterday when he made the claim that no one would know who Tom Brady was if it weren’t for the infamous Tuck Rule in that 2002 playoff blizzard against the Raiders. This was of course coming off of his Baltimore Ravens losing to the New England Patriots just four days prior. Jealous much?
There are numerous errors in Lewis’s statement that I’m not sure where to begin. So, let’s start here:
“When we — the first time we created something called a tuck rule, it’s the only reason we know — I’m just being honest — the only reason we know who Tom Brady is, because of a tuck rule,” Lewis said. “There’s no such thing as a tuck rule! If the ball is in your hand, and I knock it out your hand, whether it’s going backwards, forwards, lateral, sideways, however it’s coming out, that’s a freaking fumble.”
First, there was already a tuck rule. It was created in 1999, the year before Tom Brady was drafted. Did anyone really know what it was until that Blizzard Bowl? I for one did not. But, that doesn’t mean it didn’t exist. So, what happened on that day was very good officiating. It was a referee that knew the rule book up and down and was able to make a call that was in the rule books that a majority of fans, players and coaches didn’t even know existed. That doesn’t make it wrong. That shows the problem with the NFL. I mean come on, Donovan McNabb didn’t even know the rules of overtime!
I do agree with Lewis that the tuck rule is silly, much like what happened to Dez Bryant this past Sunday and Calvin Johnson a few years back. That was a catch, and Rod Woodson forced a fumble, but according to the rules, both calls were correct. Rules are very much like laws. Just because Ray Lewis figured out a way to get around them, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be followed.
Now, to say that because of the tuck rule we would never know Tom Brady is outlandish. In fact, heading into that game, everyone knew Tom Brady. He was the 6th-round draft pick that stepped in for the 0-2 New England Patriots after Drew Bledsoe, one of the best passing quarterbacks in the game was power bombed by Captain Insano. Brady would go on to lead the Pats to an 11-3 record as a mere nobody and was already the feel good story of that season. We all knew who Tom Brady was, and if he had lost that game against the Raiders, we still would.
Think about this? If Jeffrey Maier didn’t not catch that not home run by Derek Jeter, would we have not known The Captain? After all, that was his first postseason, that is what started the heroics of one of the biggest heroes in modern day baseball. It’s unthinkable. Jeter would go on to amass 3,270 more hits after that home run. He would win four more World Series after that 1996 season. May the Yankees fortunes have changed if Maier didn’t catch that home run? Perhaps, but the legend of Derek Jeter would still be the same, much like that of Brady’s.
Maybe if Lewis said the Patriots of today would not be the Patriots had they lost that game, it would resinate as a better, more sound argument. Even still, it wouldn’t have been the first dynasty to start under questionable calls, on the field or off of it. I already mentioned the Maier home run. What about the Immaculate Reception? What if money hungry Harry Freeze didn’t sell Babe Ruth to the Yankees? What if the events of January 31, 2000 were interpreted a little differently and the Ravens never had their star player in their infamous defense? I’m pretty sure the Ravens won their first Super Bowl ever the very next season.
The tuck rule also did not effect the last 13 years of Brady’s illustrious career. Brady’s early career made people wonder if he was simply part of a great system. He was nothing flashy, and certainly no one saw the quarterback in Brady that he would become. He was the face of a team that had many key cogs that would make them champions.
That all changed in 2007. Brady became the reason the Patriots were so good. How a tuck rule in 2002 could affect the 16-0 season behind a 50 touchdown performance six years later is astonishing. Brady is forever going to be in the greatest of all time conversations, and whether or not he fumbled that ball wouldn’t change that.
The Patriots will always be in a whirl wind of controversy. This isn’t the first time their winning ways have been attacked. They haven’t won a championship since that little Spygate affair, and that has never ceased to haunt them. But if losing an 18-0 season to the lowly Giants didn’t tarnish Brady’s legacy, a peculiar rule certainly wouldn’t either.
There were a few things we learned about Ray Lewis over his Hall of Fame career. He was one of the most gifted athletes to step on the field. He is arguably the greatest linebacker to ever play the game. But he also loves the limelight for himself and his Ravens. Lewis has never steered clear of the spotlight, whether it be his on-field antics or his outspoken comments.
The Ravens, and thus Ray Lewis, lost this past Saturday in Foxboro. That means he and the Ravens will be out of the spotlight until next season, or at least until their next classy player finds themselves in the news for non-NFL affairs. What better way to get back into the limelight than being a jackass? Some players have made a career out of just that.
Well, folks, baseball season is over. The end of the World Series will now bring endless amounts of rumors as to where each big free agent is going to go. College football had some big games and the playoff picture may have gotten a little bit clearer. That’s still weird to hear, huh? Playoff picture and college football in the same sentence? Russell Westbrook proved to be one of the most fragile “superstars” in the NBA and the Dallas Cowboys dropped their second straight loss. Pretty eventful week, huh?
I told you. The Dallas Cowboys are a joke. I told you they were two weeks ago when every one was on their junk as the best team in football, and I told you last week when they didn’t even crack my Top 5 teams in the NFL. They are a good team. But a good team led by Tony Romo would eventually crumble, as they did Monday night losing to the Colt McCoy-led Redskins. Please refrain from the injury excuse as well, because you know what? Brandon Weeden looked sharp in his fill-in time.
There are a ton of teams on bye this week. The Falcons and Lions get to rest after their trip across the pond. The upstart Bills are off, as are the Bears, Packers and Titans. That leaves 13 games on the slate for this week’s NFL action. Four of the five teams in the Wayniac Nation Power 5 (in order the Broncos, Cardinals, Patriots, Lions and Colts) will see action this week. So what should you pay closest attention to this week? Come on now, you know I got that answer for you!
It was an interesting week to say the least. TCU played a hell of a basketball game on Saturday. What was that, you say? That was their football team? Well, then, a wacky week it was indeed! There was also the World Series and early morning NFL action to go down that was second to none. This week, however, was also full of tragedy.
Last week, I came on here and told you that the Cowboys were not the best team in the NFL, despite many pundits seeing things differently. If you saw my Wacky Week in Sports (click here if you haven’t), you will see I have acknowledged that the Cowboys are a legit team. But they still aren’t the best. That honor belongs to Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos. They were the best team last season and ran into a hot Seahawks team that is struggling to stay out of the cellar in 2014. Manning now stands alone as the all-time touchdown king in NFL history. It’s a record that will continue to grow, and although they say records were made to be broken, I don’t know how this one would ever be.
Heading into the halfway point of the season, the five best teams right now are the Denver Broncos, the Dallas Cowboys, the Arizona Cardinals, the Philadelphia Eagles and the Indianapolis Colts or Green Bay Packers. All six of these teams have huge games this weekend that are must-wins to keep the likes of the Chargers, Lions and Patriots from continuing to climb to the top. The five worst teams right now are the Oakland Raiders, Jacksonville Jaguars, the New York Jets, the Tampa Bay Suck-a-neers and Atlanta Falcons. The Titans, Vikings and the Saints are probably all worse off than the Falcons, but this Atlanta team was supposed to bounce back this season and instead, they seem to be sinking deeper into the abyss that their 2013 collapse was.
The San Francisco 49ers and New York Giants both have off this week which means we got a pretty full slate of 15 games. What should you be paying close attention to this weekend? Well, that’s why you clicked on this article, right?