The what if premise and what could or would, actually happen …

The what if premise and what could or would, actually happen …

By tophatal ………..

A friend and I, were recently discussing the state of the economy and as we know, figures normally offered up by so many of the federal agencies ( Commerce Department) tend to overstate , rather than giving a truly exact figure. Done more so to impress , more than anything else, while the politicians themselves ,seek to take credit for initiatives that they believe , they originally set into motion. Given that, individuals, such as House members Paul Ryan, Senator Rand Paul , Senator Mitch McConnell , John Boehner , Sen Charles E Schumer , Sen Robert Menendez , Harry Reid, Sen Ted Cruz and Pete Olsen , show a propensity for never-ending stupidity , as it relates to economic matters and that , they tend to now work under the premise of what ifs . I wonder, how they might feel , if the public were allowed to use the same premise, by suggesting, what if the US Congress were actually paid on performances by way of productivity and legislative measures passed , that actually prove to be of benefit , by actually truly creating growth in the economy ?

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Far too many idiots , are under the mistaken belief, that the private sector alone can be the biggest producers of jobs and investment within the economy . Consider the following, US companies are now sitting on a cash-pile of over $3.26 trillion ($3,260,000,000,000) , representing over 20% of the nation’s GDP (gross domestic product) , yet , when pressed to broach this subject, about why these corporations are not investing in jobs , infrastructure , much less capital investments , those who espouse a “conservative” opinion , are hard pressed to offer up a concise answer about the reasons why these companies are not investing. They may well point to the buoyancy of the stock market , with their being voluminous activity , by way either major business takeovers or increased profits , but that in of-itself, is not always considered to be a real indicator of a vibrant economy . Apathy on the part of the electorate and the very fact, that the members of the US Congress are not always clear speaking, when addressing the nuances and vagaries of macroeconomics , much less any type of governmental policy, be it, domestic or foreign, in nature. If you were informed, that for every dollar spent within the US economy, forty cents of that, was derived from government spending , one wonders how that might be addressed by those who seek to have massive reduction of spending without being able to suggest where they believe cuts should be made , other than to social welfare programs ?

Unfortunately, the country also possesses a leader , who has become something of a “dead weight” , not only in terms of a policy stance , but the indication is now here, to show that Barack Obama, flits from each issue, like a bee pollinating a flower , while in the hope, that the pollination will be a real success. His initiatives have been very much like that, without him being readily willing to admit to any failure during his tenure . With the mid-term elections now less than six months away , the nation is about to be “sold a bill of goods” , with each side pointing to the danger of electing or re-electing an opponent. It’s pretty much safe to say, no matter who gets elected or reelected , things are unlikely to change , as the status quo within both legislative chambers is likely to remain the same. The only thing, that actually separates a “Liberal” from a Conservative “ , just happens to be the depth of their deceit and corruptible practices . Altruism, simply goes out the door, once these officials have been elected to both chambers of the congress !

The NFL’s not so quiet off-season, has led to a stream of player movement , with veterans well as second and third year players, now finding a new home to display their skill-set. Granted, the contracts are not as steep, but , there have been cases, where some players have remained with their teams, having signed a contract extension . The Chicago Bears having rid themselves of Julius Peppers , somehow then saw fit to offer their veteran quarterback , Jay Cutler a seven-year $126 million contract , therein making Cutler the highest paid player in the NFL. Now take into account, that Jay Cutler’s playoff record has been far from stellar . In two playoff appearances, during the Bears 2010 playoff run , the player bears a 1-1 record, for which those performances, can best be described as being downright mediocre. GM Phil Emery and the Bears’ front office , were either of the opinion, that they can rally behind Cutler, with regard to the franchise’s future , with his being their best option to lead them to their goal of a Superbowl victory. Or they may well have felt that the player might well have been inclined to seek a trade ,with their being growing disillusionment among the fans of his not being able to lead the team deep into the postseason. A necessary trait that is desired, with any quarterback, seeking to lead a team to a Superbowl victory and Cutler, is no different from any of his peers within the game today.

The Chicago Bears, were far from convincing in 2013, having finished the season with an 8-8 record within the NFC North under head coach Marc Trestman . Many of their travails, stemmed from the inconsistency of the offense and their lackadaisical approach on defense . Yet, for those who remain stoic believers in Jay Cutler’s skill-set , I would suggest that at this stage of the eight year veteran’s career in the NFL, they begin to review the premise that he is indeed one of the better quarterbacks in the league.

Trestman I believe, will be able to correct the issues concerning his team, but with the off-season moves made by the organization, make the necessary room available via cap space available, to lure free agents and at the same time, be in preparation for the upcoming NFL Draft. Chicago’s wants, are likely to encompass the need for a pass rusher, and one or two , defensive linemen. Yet, at the end of the day, that is by no means a certainty of where Marc Trestman, the coaching staff and front office are likely to discuss their primary focus in terms of the team’s requirements.

Last season’s dismal performance in the Superbowl , still looms large over not only Peyton Manning , but also over the remaining cast of teammates, still on the roster . The Broncos’ lopsided loss to the rampaging Seattle Seahawks, led by sophomore quarterback Russell Wilson , sent a somber reminder that just because, you are viewed as one of the all-time greats , it does not make you invincible . The fact that the two combatants in last season’s NFL finale, were deemed to be the two best teams , not solely based on their records alone , but also statistically, in terms of defense and offense. What the viewing fans were subjected to, via the live television broadcast , with tens of millions watching nationally and estimated 1.3 billion watching worldwide , might well have been the biggest ” black eye “ that the NFL has suffered in recent years , if it was the intention of the league hierarchy to sell that particular game as branded product” . If anything, it was simply an eyesore of unquantifiable magnitude . Suffice to say, Manning may well have given one of his worst postseason performances ever, but the action served up by his teammates was equally inept in terms of measure and substance . John Fox and his coaching staff may well need to look at the team’s secondary and assess the numerous areas, where they allowed the Seahawks tear through many of their flaws , warts and all.

The 2014 NFL season may well provide the fans of the league, the very last chance, to see the best both Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, as they make one more tilt at adding to their respective postseason and Superbowl legacies . I do believe, that they are both capable of taking their teams back to the postseason, but the question remains, will they each, have enough in the tank, to actually get the job done ?

It does not pain me to say this, but there is a great deal of bull#hit, to be found within the blogging world , especially when it comes to the area of sports, and the very fact that many of the opinions being put down, are either half-baked, without merit or any common sense whatsoever ! With the recent acquisitions of wide receiver Eric Decker and running back Chris Johnson, one blogging contributor tried to suggest that overnight the New York Jets would immediately become a credible favorite to win the AFC East , because of the offensive firepower provided by both players. Now while I believe both Decker and Johnson, to be very good players at their respective positions, but I think that the contributor simply overlooked the fact about the Jets’ quarterback just happened to be last season. Anyone of the belief , that rookie Geno Smith had a very good year and was among the best of the rookie quarterbacks who saw action during 2013 , must be sadly mistaken, if they were under the impression that the AFC East signal caller was among the best of the rookies in question . Learning from one’s mistakes, actually shows signs of growth, but there was none to be seen from Smith over the course of the season.

Rex Ryan as head coach of the New York Jets, went through a tumultuous season in 2013, bedeviled by the fact, he had to deal with the issues of Mark Sanchez, .who has since departed from the Jets’ organization . Ryan failed to curtailed the exuberance and lack of understanding by his incumbent starting quarterback , and it was clear that beyond his own future being in jeopardy, along with that of his entire coaching staff , in particular quarterbacks’ coach David Lee , whose obvious tutelage of Smith left a great deal to be desired. How this all could be overlooked by the blogger who was seeking to show that the Jets’ quarterback was growing stature , leads me to believe that he simply lacked an original idea , much less the intelligence to see the obvious. Smith may have had a great college career, being among the very best, during his final year at West Virginia (Mountaineers) . But that in of-itself, has not been enough to remotely suggest that there is likely to be an improvement in his play during this upcoming season.

It would be fair to suggest, that since their appearance in the Superbowl in 2003 , with Bill Callahan , then as the head coach of the Oakland Raiders . In the aftermath of that loss, to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, things have simply spiraled out of control for the once venerable and well-respected franchise. The coaching turnovers instigated by then owner Al Davis , his later death, with the passing of ownership to his son, Mark Davis . Yet, things continue to be as mediocre as it has ever been on all fronts , within the front office , to the personnel decisions being as it relates the draft and their ongoing acquisitions. The era of Carson Palmer, came and went without anyone actually noticing a damn thing ! As to the belief that All Pro Defensive player Nnamdi Asomugha was to be that game-changer that Raiders’ fans claimed him to be, well, let us just say, that Asmougha’s retirement from the game after something of a lackluster career, can only be highlighted by the fact, he is now married to one of Hollywood’s hottest actresses , in Kerry Washington.

In 2013, Raiders’ head coach Dennis Allen struggled to get his team playing with any measure of competitiveness , never-mind, that within the AFC West , with the now resurgent Kansas City Chiefs , San Diego Chargers to go alongside the dominant Denver Broncos made things all the more difficult within the division , for the beleaguered franchise. Defensively, the Raiders were nonplussed, performing with the modicum of mediocrity, one would come to expect of a franchise that has become one of the “major laughing stocks” of the NFL over the past decade . Not to be left out of the equation, was the absurdity of seeing the Raiders’ offense in motion. Coming off, a 4-12 season , it is easy to understand why the Oakland Raiders have continued to struggle over the past decade . There has been no form of leadership on the roster or from anyone on the coaching staff , along with the hyperbole over players such as Darren McFadden , Terrelle Pryor , Marcel Reese , Denarius Moore, Jeron Mastrud , Jason Hunter, LaMarr Houston , Nick Roach , Tracy Porter , Mike Jenkins and veteran Charles Woodson , whose best years are now behind him, that his best view , would come by use of rear view mirror !

For the hyperbole surrounding Terrelle Pryor, during his collegiate career at Ohio State (Buckeyes) , under the now disgraced former head coach , Jim Tressel . There is no denying the fact , that while the player is immensely talented , his lack of maturity and integrity , sullied his reputation and chance of being a high draft pick , had he declared for the NFL Draft under the usual circumstances. Instead , the quarterback was taken in the 2011 NFL Supplemental Draft by the Oakland Raiders , with the thought that he would hone his craft , become a productive player in the NFL . If nothing else, there have been glimpses of brilliance from the player , but rarely anything, to really suggest that he is capable of leading a team at the highest level. Now after merely two years in the league, Raiders’ GM Reggie McKenzie and team owner Mark Davis, have made the decision that the Terrelle Pryor reign in Oakland , must now come to an immediate end. Pryor for his part, has landed on his feet, having been picked up by Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks, where in all likelihood, Pryor is likely to be the third on the team’s depth chart behind Russell Wilson and Tarvaris Jackson . One cannot help but wonder, about what might have been, had Terrelle Pryor simply shown the promise seen at the collegiate level during his time with the Buckeyes. Instead, another overrated quarterback, falls by the wayside , though not yet on the scrap-heap , littered with passers, we have seen come and go over the past ten years within the NFL.

There has been a great deal written , in the lead-up the NFL Draft, as to whom , the prospective number one overall draft pick is likely to be. Now to my mind, in spite of the prestige that comes with such a choice for the team, said to be privileged with making that decision. The choice itself, does have its pratfalls, because a great deal , is not only made of that decision, but also of the financial outlay that is likely to be costly for a franchise, albeit, that there is now a rookie salary scale, now in place within the NFL , unlike from earlier years , past. In 2007, JaMarcus Russell , then the number one pick by the Oakland Raiders in the draft of that year , was afforded a rookie contract, that was nothing short of astonishing , as Al Davis made the decision to give the former LSU Tigers’ quarterback, a six-year $61 million deal , with $32 million in guaranteed money . Russell’s career began in a bluster and simply fizzled during the later years , with his offering nothing of substance during his stay in the NFL . Once again, the Raiders go out on a flier , taking a high risk player , without obtaining anything tangible in return, for the fruits of their labor. Due diligence and intelligence, is not something that is likely to be found in abundance within the Raiders’ organization and certainly not during the latter years of Al Davis’ reign or during that of his son , working with Reggie McKenzie.

The agents for Johnny Manziel , Jadeveon Clowney , Blake Bortles , Greg Robinson and Khalil Mack , are likely to be working frantically, to have their client be viewed as that desired number one pick , as well as being, the type of player, that a franchise can build around. Rarely, is that the case, with a number one pick in the NFL Draft, but there is always the exception to the rule. A case can be made that, Eli Manning in 2004 and Andrew Luck in 2012 , were the last two number one picks in the NFL Draft who can be looked upon as being picks, that have paid off hugely in terms of the dividends returned for their respective teams in the past eight years . Though this past season , Eli Manning and the New York Giants were an immense disappointment within the NFC East and the conference in its entirety . The thought, that the front office is now said to be considering demoting their two-time Superbowl winning quarterback and their drafting his heir-apparent, does seem nonsensical , when you consider the woes of the team were not solely Manning’s alone .

Nine years after the fallout, from Eli Manning’s refusal to go the San Diego Chargers, it does seem somewhat fortuitous , how the paths of Manning and Philip Rivers have remained intertwined , for right and wrong reasons, but one could also point to the fact, that their paths have also been exemplary , in terms of the success attained and the productivity of their respective careers .

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Picture gallery .

What do you expect to see during this off-season in the lead-up to the NFL Draft and do you believe that a number one pick is a likely guarantee of success for an NFL franchise ? Your thoughts on this and anything else you believe to be relevant to the topic, as you see fit?

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Picture and slideshow gallery details below .

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(1) From left to right , Congress members , Sen Lamar Alexander , Eric Cantor , House Majority Leader , John Boehner , Sen Charles Schumer , Nancy Pelosi and Sen Harry Reid . Bilateral agreements now seem to be a thing of the past in Congress, but most certainly, a photo opportunity can never be missed by the members of the House and Senate . Getty Images North America/ Phil Thatcher …..

(2) Two of the NFL’s leading pass rushers and defensive linemen , left Julius Peppers , formerly of the Chicago Bears and now a member of the Green Bay Packers . Pictured with Peppers is Jared Allen (69) , whose departure from the Minnesota Vikings to remain in the NFC North , having signed with the Bears. The rivalry between these two players will continue as both seek to climb up the ladder , as each seeks to make a dent in the active sacks’ mark , where the all-time record is held by Hall of Famer …. Bruce Smith with 200 sacks . AP Photo/ Kevin Freeman ….

(3) Chicago Bears’ quarterback Jay Cutler (6) is seen here on the sidelines during a game played against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia , Pennsylvania on the 22nd December , 2013. Also pictured is head coach Marc Trestman , whose team would suffer their biggest loss of the season , suffering a humiliating 54-11 defeat at the hands of the Chip Kelly coached Eagles. AP Photo / Phil Matthews …

(4) Russell Wilson (3) of the Seattle Seahawks is congratulated by his opposite number , Peyton Manning (18) of the Denver Broncos, after the Seahawks’ surprisingly easy triumph in defeating the Broncos 48-3 in Superbowl 48 played at the MetLife Stadium , in East Rutherford , New Jersey on the 2nd February , 2014 ., Manning had one his worst postseason performances of his illustrious NFL career. A shakeup has already began within the Broncos’ roster, with a number of notable departures during the off-season , led by Eric Decker and Champ Bailey , both seasoned veterans with the franchise. AP Photo / Chris Hall ……

(5) New York Jets’ quarterback Geno Smith is seen here with head coach Rex Ryan after the two celebrate a home victory during 2013 in a a game played at MetLife Stadium , in East Rutherford, New Jersey,. The player was somewhat unflattering with his displays , during the season , blowing hot and cold , where there was a preponderance throw interceptions at the most inopportune of moments , while leading the team to rather sub-par record within the AFC East . Excuses are now being made for the rookie quarterback , although he was said to be one of the most efficient passers entering the NFL Draft last season. Somehow that all seemed to be lost on his proponents, who continue to show their apathy . Smith’s play rarely improved during the latter half of the season , leading the franchise to now acquiring veteran Michael Vick as his backup for the upcoming season. Getty Images / Tom Clarke …..

(6) Terrelle Pryor (2) of the Oakland Raiders is seen here being congratulated by head coach Dennis Allen after a ninety-yard . twelve-play drive during the game played against the Pittsburgh Steelers at the O Coliseum in Oakland , California , last season . Pryor was traded by the franchise , having acquired Matt Schaub as a free agent during the off-season . Allen was said to be openly critical of Pryor’s agent, Jerome Stanley , who criticized the organization, for what he believes to be the mistreatment of his client, by the Oakland Raiders . Terrelle Pryor and Stanley , have since parted ways, without their said to being any acrimony between the player and his former agent. AP Photo / Rusty Shaw ……….

(7) Eli Manning (10) of the New York Giants and Philip Rivers (17) of the San Diego Chargers will be forever be joined at the hips after the events that were unfurled during the 2004 NFL Draft , after Manning and his father , Archie Manning refused to join the Chargers . After the hostilities wore off , Manning would join the Giants with Rivers ending up in San Diego. How different things might have been , had the Giants’ quarterback plied his trade in California , remains a bone of continued speculation , with the player having led the franchise to their two most recent Superbowl victories , both over the New England Patriots . AP/REUTERS/ Anthony Shaffer ………….

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Do The Bears Still Suck And Is A Roll of Charmin Really As Soft As We’re Led To Believe ?

Do The Bears Still Suck And Is A Roll of Charmin Really As Soft As We’re Led To Believe ?

There’s no denying that after Jay Cutler’s mea culpa in the postseason a great deal of questions arose about the player’s credibility and mindset . Chicago Bears’ fans and a number of his teammates sprung to the player’s defense in suggesting that the NFC Championship game loss to the Green Bay Packers and Cutler leaving the game simply wasn’t the prime reason for that defeat. I’ve long held the contention that Jay Cutler while being a good player simply isn’t a great player ! Well , not the player I think is capable of leading a team to a Superbowl victory !

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Jay Cutler’s talents are undeniable but there seems to be something lacking from within , as to what that might be I can’t be totally be sure . He may well have the arm to launch the ball 60 yards at the drop of a hat but that if anything is the primary flaw in his arsenal . That pass is just as liable to be intercepted by the opposing defense as it is to end up in the arms of one of his receivers . Head coach Lovie Smith a staunch supporter of his beleaguered Pro Bowl quarterback has even suggested that Cutler was the main reason for having a successful 2010 season. That in ofitself may well be true but few if any truly believed that the Chicago Bears would be deemed one of the best teams in the NFC last season . Granted , we saw a number of teams within the conference fall by the wayside due to inconsistency and in part more so through injuries but that becomes a mute point because isn’t that why teams have depth to their rosters ?

The challenge for the Chicago Bears isn’t one of not being good but simply playing well on a consistent basis and that to my mind has always been the knock against the team. You simply cannot trust the Chicago Bears to go out and play four consecutive quarters of high quality football much less two but yet somehow there are fans out there who believe that because of Jay Cutler , this team should now be viewed as a legitimate contender for the Superbowl ? Granted , the team now has a solid blend of veterans and youth with Brian Urlacher leading the charge . And it should be remembered it was Urlacher amongst the players who leapt to the quarterback’s defense when it was suggested that Cutler simply bailed on his teammates to hide from his own insecurities and somewhat lackadaisical performance during the NFC championship game. That asides , it once again all boiled down to the fact that this teams lacks resolve to close out a game when they have it within their grasp.

Head coach Lovie Smith’s philosophy has been to build his team around a miserly defense that allows the opposing team almost nothing. If anything that was taught to him by Tony Dungy from who he gained much of his knowledge as a coordinator , which he now puts to good use. But you should not discount the offense of the Chicago Bears where their primary running back Matt Forte can be counted on to be productive when given the means to do so. Certainly the Bears’ offense is more than capable of putting points on the board but with that also comes the expectations of wins , divisional titles , conference championships but most of all the Superbowl victory. And it is these expectations that cast a giant shadow over this whole organization and the fact that there are some who have questioned whether or not Lovie Smith is the right man for the job and above all whether or not Jay Cutler is the quarterback is the guy to lead this team to that ultimate goal.

Beyond Matt Forte the complementary pieces for the offense seem to be in place with Devin Hester , Johnny Knox , Chester Taylor , Earl Bennett and the newly acquired Marion Barber . And with the defensive presence of Brian Urlacher alongside Julius Peppers , Lance Briggs , Charles Tillman and Danieal Manning there is a belief that the team could very well be favored to do something special this upcoming season .

As I alluded to earlier if the Chicago Bears are to be successful then Jay Cutler to my mind will have to show me a great deal more than I witnesed last season and in particular after his performance in the NFC championship game . There are those who suggested that his injury was indeed far more serious than it was as first presumed to be. Others will detract from that by saying that the player simply opted to bail on his team when he realized he had nothing to offer. I’m of the opinion that it was little of both , Cutler was injured but I doubt injured enough to the point where it warranted him sitting out the vast majority of the game. It may well have sat well with some of his teammates on the day but I do believe that many of the Bears’ fans at Soldier Field saw an unacceptable side of a player whose maturity level isn’t where it needs to be. And as for Brian Urlacher’s assertion that Jay Cutler is a warrior , well we know that the defensive stalwart has been known to play through pain when his team needed him most . But this falsehood that he now lives under that his quarterback is a player he’d run through a wall for seems all so laughable given Urlacher’s own displays of courage and bravado on the field.

The NFC North apart from being home to the reigning Superbowl champions the Green Bay Packers also has residing there the Minnesota Vikings , Detroit Lions as well as the Chicago Bears . And for the respective coaches Mike McCarthy , Leslie Frazier , Jim Schwartz and Lovie Smith , they are all looking for their teams to acquit themselves well this year. I personally believe that of the cadre of coaches mentioned Smith may well be the one with the most to lose . If his team should fail to make the postseason at best then I certainly believe that in spite of the contract extension granted he could be shown the door by either team GM Jerry Angelo or Tim Ruskell the Head of Football Operations for the Bears’ organization. There can only be so much that the fans can be be subjected to and be asked to endure . To be repeatedly asked to witness a team come up short is not one of them and at this juncture it’s pretty safe that’s what the fans of the Chicago Bears have actually beared witness to.

The Minnesota Vikings have their own issues and with the team’s acquisition of Donovan McNabb it may arguably be seen as something of an upgrade from the quarterbacks on the team’s roster of last season. When one bears in mind that the throngs of Brett Favre fans were simply wiling their time away as the self aggrandizing veteran was showing his age , with his best days are so far behind him that it couldn’t be seen from a rear view mirror. Now the Vikings’ fans will be subjected to the travails of Donovon McNabb over the coming season . Let’s put this way McNabb didn’t help his cause any last season with a number of horrendous displays but at the same time one has to remember he was playing for the Washington Redskins which has Mike Shanahan as the head coach with his son , Kyle Shanahan as the offensive coordinator . There hasn’t been such an inept duo front and center e for the public to view since Ross Perot and Vice Admiral James Stockdale were running as independents , seeking to win the US Presidential election . The less said about that event and likewise with the Redskins’ 2010 season the better !

I believe that the Detroit Lions are still a work in progress but how much longer will the fans be patient with the often injured Matt Stafford ? I am not saying that he’s brittle but there are leukemia patients with more moxie and strength than the player is said to possess . Alas , the Lions will live and die by the play of their quarterback . For the Green Bay Packers it’s all about looking to make a successful defense of their title . Quiet in the offseason no doubt obviously due to the lockout the team stood pat not making any serious moves in looking to add to the roster . However , you can be sure that the team of last season along with their draftees will be looking to make some waves and show that their triumph of last season wasn’t an aberration. And Superbowl MVP Aaron Rodgers will most certainly be out to show that he’s now rightfully assumed the mantel once held by his predecessor Brett Favre . And for those who’d suggested that the team couldn’t win without the legendary quarterback ___ how’s that dose of crow tasting right about now ?

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have with regard to the upcoming season for the Chicago Bears and in particular for their quarterback Jay Cutler ? And also do you see the Green Bay Packers quite possibly making a successful defense of their Superbowl title ? Chime in with any pertinent thoughts you might have on the points raised within this piece and as always thanks for the continued support !

Alan aka tophatal ….. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Contact tophatal @ rapptu@gmail.com

Picture and slide show details .

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(1) Chicago Bears wide receiver Devin Hester stretches during NFL football training camp Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …..

(2) Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, right, looks to a throw as offensive coordinator Mike Martz looks on during NFL football training camp Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh ……

(3) Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher watches his teammates practice during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(4) Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler wipes his face during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(5) Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith watches his team during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(6) Chicago Bears general manager Jerry Angelo watches his team during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(7) Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz, center, talks with quarterbacks Jay Cutler, left, and Caleb Hanie during NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 1, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh …….

(8) Jan 23, 2011; Chicago, IL, USA; Green Bay Packers defensive tackle B.J. Raji (90) returns an interception for a touchdown past Chicago Bears quarterback Caleb Hanie (12) during the fourth quarter of the 2011 NFC championship game at Soldier Field. Rob Grabowski-US PRESSWIRE ……..

(9) Green Bay Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings (85) is tackled by Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher (54) during the first half of the NFC Championship NFL football game Sunday, Jan. 23, 2011, in Chicago. AP Photo/David J. Phillip ………

(10) Quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) of the Green Bay Packers dives into the corner of the endzone for a one-yard touchdown run against Danieal Manning (38) of the Chicago Bears in the first quarter of the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Getty Images / Jamie Squire ……..

(11) Quarterback Jay Cutler (6) of the Chicago Bears attempts to avoid a sack by Cullen Jenkins (77) of the Green Bay Packers in the first quarter of the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Getty Images North America / Jamie Squire ……
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Let The Fun And Games Begin ……….. When You’re Ready Please NFL ?

Let The Fun And Games Begin ……….. When You’re Ready Please NFL ?

It’s been pretty much an offseason of discontent within the NFL with the owners , players and league hierarchy suddenly realizing that the start of the season is merely around the corner . Never mind the fact that teams haven’t really been able to conduct their OTA’s at their respective training facilities . In that respect the whole preseason and initial start of the regular season due to begin on the 8thd September could very well offer the fans a product that could be so bland and meaningless that it might have us wondering whether or not it wasn’t worth completely abandoning the season altogether . No one wants to see an on field product that by three or four three that could be so out of sync and mediocre that given the fact that the fans will be asked to pay a sizable sum to witness this all . And if as is being proposed we could very well see a preseason that will have to forgo two of the four scheduled games then any sort semblance of cohesiveness could very well be something that the fans are not liable to see at all .

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With that in mind of all the teams that I witnessed over the course of last season none more so than the Atlanta Falcons had me wondering how good could this team really be . Granted , their postseason foray ended somewhat abruptly but I put that down to more inexperience more than anything else . The team’s coach Mike Smith and his coaching staff seem to have found that semblance of cohesion and consistency that many teams yearn for in the league but so few are able to find it . Having won the NFC South rather comfortably, posting a 13-3 record within the league . Many felt that the team led my their Pro Bowl quarterback Matt Ryan could very well have pulled off a major surprise during the postseason. This season if anything a great deal is expected from this team and in particular by their erstwhile fans . The era of Michael Vick is long gone and but a distant and quickly fading memory . Team owner Arthur Blank and the front office headed by GM Rich McKay know that they were fortuitous not only in the hiring of Mike Smith as the team coach but also in their drafting of Matt Ryan .

I’ve no doubt that this season could very well see this team prove to be dominant but that being said I also believe that the NFC South could very well be a highly competitive division. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers , alongside the New Orleans Saints should prove to be formidable and with the Carolina Panthers no doubt looking to their overall number one pick from this year’s draft Cam Newton to simply show the Panthers’ fans what he’s made of . Who knows where the season could very well take us ?

Rich McKay and the scouting department made some prudent choices in the NFL Draft that will prove to be productive for the Falcons’ organization as a whole . And with those selections being strategically rendered with there being an assortment of offense and defense to bolster the needs of the team . The prize pick was wide receiver Julio Jones who will no doubt compliment what is already a formidable offensive presence alongside Michael Turner , Roddy White , Tony Gonzalez and Brian Finneran . And from a defensive standpoint this team can only get better as they being to gel more as a cohesive unit . But in retrospect it does all come down to have a balance on both sides of the ball and here too the Falcons aren’t necessarily lacking as the offense when having found its rhythm can be as good as any within the league .

Now would it be remiss to suggest that the Atlanta Falcons are not good enough to be considered amongst the NFC favorites for the Superbowl ? I think that perhaps not given that no one could really have foreseen the Green Bay Packers coming out of the NFC as conference champions much less wining the title itself . If anything all eyes were perhaps on the New Orleans Saint or Chicago Bears from last year as it related to the postseason. I read with interest where a fellow blogger within this medium suggested that the next young quarterback within the league who is on the cusp of leading a team and actually winning the Superbowl will be the Bears’ Jay Cutler . Yes the that Jay Cutler who essentially baulked and walked away from his team when they needed him most . For all of Brian Urlacher’s traits , facing reality doesn’t seem to be one of those , especially in light of the player coming to his quarterback’s defense by saying that ‘…..Cutler was a warrior and one of the hardest working players in the league as well as one of the best players at the position in the entire NFL’ . Obviously Urlacher hadn’t been taking much note of what happened in the Bears’ meltdown and their subsequent 21-14 loss to the Packers much of which could be squarely placed on Jay Culter’s shoulders for the team’s demise in the NFC title game .

As to the ongoing impasse between the league and NLFPA I would certainly like to be optimistic with regard to what I have been hearing via the various news sources . But given the fact that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has handled this situation with about as much precision as a one armed individual being asked to juggle an explosive device . I think that it’s pretty safe to say that this episode is far from over as it relates to the present work stoppage . For all of the pontificating , finger pointing and in the end so called accord that we are now seeing from all sides with Goodell and his union counterpart DeMaurice Smith of the NFLPA issuing a joint statement focusing on the two sides close to reaching an accord , I for one won’t believe it until I hear that an agreement has been reached , a binding contract signed and we are told the league will indeed begin its regular season schedule on time . Anything short of that I will still deem to be a complete failure !

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

Simply chime in with a comment as to your thoughts raised within this piece and thanks as always for the continued support as it’s greatly appreciated .

Alan aka tophatal …………… https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) FILE – This May 24, 2011, file photo shows Atlanta Falcons rookie receiver Julio Jones, left, greeting quarterback Matt Ryan before an informal football workout, in Buford, Ga. Ryan and Jones haven’t let the NFL lockout stop them from beginning a new friendship. AP Photo/David Goldman …..

(2) NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 28: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (L) poses for a photo with Julio Jones, #6 overall pick by the Atlanta Falcons, holds up a jersey on stage during the 2011 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 28, 2011 in New York City. Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images ………

(3) Carolina Panthers’ Cam Newton, rear, looks on as teammate Steve Smith, center, calls a play at his youth football camp in Charlotte, N.C., Friday, June 17, 2011. It was another bonding experience for what will be one of the most scrutinized quarterback-receiver combinations in the NFL _ if Smith stays in Carolina. AP Photo/Chuck Burton ……

(4) Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, right, talks with Jerry Richardson, owner of the Carolina Panthers, as they arrive for meetings in Rosemont, Ill., Tuesday, June 21, 2011. Owners gathered to discuss the status of negotiations with the players for a new collective bargaining agreement. AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh ……

(5) Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy shows off his Super Bowl ring Thursday, June 16, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis., after the NFL football team’s ring ceremony at Lambeau Field. AP Photo/Mike Roemer …..

(6) NFL commissioner Roger Goodell with team owners and legal counsel for the league . Getty Images/ Hannah Foslien ……

(7) Sam Shields (37_ of the Green Bay Packers intercepts the game’s final pass and runs for 32-yards to seal the 21-14 victory for the Packers against the Chicago Bears in the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.
Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images North America ….

(8) Quarterback Jay Cutler (6 ) of the Chicago Bears celebrates his six-yard touchdown run with Devin Hester (23) against the Seattle Seahawks in the second quarter of the 2011 NFC divisional playoff game at Soldier Field on January 16, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Johnathan Daniel / Getty Images …….

(9) After a failed coaching experiment four years ago, Falcons owner Arthur Blank, left, is thrilled with the job Mike Smith, right, has done with the team. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images …..

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NFL News

NFL Schedule 2011 subject to change

Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta Falcons team roster

Atlanta Falcons’ schedule 2011

Atlanta Falcons’ teams stats 2010

Mike Smith Head coach

Atlanta Falcons coaching staff

Atlanta Falcons News

Packers , Steelers, Packers , Steelers , Packer , Steelers …. Who’ve You Got ?

Packers , Steelers , Packers , Steelers , Packer , Steelers …. Who’ve You Got ?

Well the NFL’s showcase event Superbowl 45 (SBXLV) is but a week away this Sunday and is set to take place at Cowboys Stadium , Arlington , Texas , Sunday 6th February, 2011. For coaches Mike Tomlin and his counterpart Mike McCarthy this is essentially the epitome of their professional career. Having your name mentioned in the same breath as such luminary NFL greats as Lombardi , Shula , Ditka , Knoll and Bill Walsh will no doubt resonate with both of these coaches and what they’ve meant to the NFL. Each having been enshrined in the Hall of Fame in Canton , Ohio it’s easy to understand why having your name associated with the Lombardi Trophy and the adorning winner’s ring that signifies you’re a winner __ there’s not much else that really needs to be said.

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Well the Pittsburgh Steelers being the AFC representatives will be viewed as the home team having the better record of the two participants. The Green Bay Packers for their part coming off a rather impressive performance against the Chicago Bears it has to be said that if anything that was their finest effort put forth of the season . Everything seemed to click right for the Packers as Aaron Rodgers and this unlikely cast simply laid waste to Lovie Smith’s —- team . And while there’s been a great deal of criticism of Bears’ quarterback Jay Cutler for his non-participation in the latter part of this game , to my mind it merely endorsed what I’ve always thought along about Cutler as a player and his character. He’s self absorbed , aloof and cares little about others , other than caring about himself !

Now while I’m under no illusions as to the pedigree of both teams there’s no doubt in my mind that these are the two best representatives that the AFC and NFC could have mustered for this showcase event. All of the hoopla over teams such as the Minnesota Vikings , Dallas Cowboys , New England Patriots , San Diego Chargers and reigning Superbowl champions the New Orleans Saints were all for naught as they simply fell by the wayside either during the regular season or during the playoffs itself.

For Ben Roethlisberger and his teammates this will be their chance to add to the Steelers’ already illustrious history by becoming the first NFL franchise to have won seven Superbowl titles . And it’s easy to comprehend why the Rooney family as owners of the team are revered and respected throughout the game. They’re often viewed as the class organization within the NFL and there’s indeed great deal of veracity to that claim. And in spite of the off the field issues of Roethlisberger this season it has to be said that how Tomlin and his coaching staff got his players to play with a great deal of zeal in all facets of the game while holding themselves accountable has to be admired.

If anything as the season progressed the better this Steelers’ team became and that was with the return of Roethlisberger after he’d served his league mandated four game suspension. At 3-1 few thought that the Pittsburgh Steelers would have been in that position and augured well for the fans in attendance at Heinz Field with the terrible towels showing their and unbridled and unrivaled passion for their team. Consistently playing to their strengths the second half of the season would have its ups and downs for the Steelers. But if anything it has been the play of Roethlisberger and the offense that simply showed why this team was on a mission. Not to be outdone Dick LeBeau’s defense simply turned it up a notch as and when needed. And if anyone is of the belief that LeBeau is not the best defensive coordinator in the NFL today, then they’re in need some psychiatric help !

Mike McCarthy has had to deal with a great deal over the past five years and it having survived the Brett Favre saga and all that it represented I’ve got to say that his psyche has got be as tough as hell ! And for those supporters of Jay Cutler who are of the opinion that he’s as tough as nails , I’ve heard that American Idol alum Clay Aiken has asked that Cutler turn in his man card . Rodgers this season has proven that by his play , leadership qualities and skills he’s the proven successor Brett Favre . I doubt that there’s a Packers’ fans in Green Bay who’s all that concerned or cares about Brett Favre any longer ! And whereas Favre has always showed some type great emotional well being towards the fans at Lambeau Field , Green Bay , when he’s been a player on an opposing team. Well let’s just say that the love hasn’t always been reciprocated towards the former Packer , not since his abrupt departure from the organization . There’s more chance that Hugo Chavez or some current members of Congress and the Senate would be more welcomed with open arms and signs of affection. But that’s just my take on the situation and I’ll stick with it !

If the Packers are to prevail in this game then it will take a concerted effort by the entire team if they’re to prevail . And for a seasoned veteran such as cornerback Charles Woodson this will be the chance to put a stamp on an illustrious career and an almost certainty as a future Hall of Famer . This game certainly won’t be just about the performances of both teams but I do believe that both coaching staffs will have their roles to play. And while McCarthy seeks his first Superbowl win this will Tomlin’s second appearance as a coach as he looks to add to his already impressive record as an NFL coach. He seeks to become only the second African American coach to have won a Superbowl and the youngest to have won two before the age of forty.

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As I alluded to earlier the game will be about the play not only of the two starting quarterbacks who’ve essentially now become the faces of their respective franchises. And if anything this adds further legitimacy that they’re amongst the elite within the league at the position . The Brady’s , Manning’s (Peyton) , Brees and Rivers of the world won’t be in the building just like Elvis , as they’ll be sitting at home while Elvis rests in his mausoleom.

Alas on a bye note it now appears that Tennessee Titans’ coach Jeff Fisher will not be returning to the team next season . It goes without saying that I feel that he’ll find a another position within the NFL at the drop of a hat. He’s too well respected around the league not to be given the opportunity. And for Titans’ owner Bud Adams all I can say is that you are the butt-hole I’ve always thought you to be ! With a miscreant and ass wipe like Vince Young on the team who customarily laid waste to any ambitions that the organization may well have had for the season with his errant play and infantile behavior. And for you to stick with him when common sense revealed that he was more of a detriment to the team than a case of bubonic plague or dengue fever. Well it would suggest that clear thought of mind was never a strong point of yours and heeding the genuine advice of others also was never ever something that you took into account !

Young , himself , has revealed that he still feels given the right opportunity that he can contribute to any team around the league and that the setbacks that have occurred can be turned around. Is it me but do I hear some laughter in the background after the player’s latest statement ?

What thoughts if any do you have on the Superbowl and how do you see things panning out between these two teams ? Also how do you view the decision of Jeff Fisher not to return to the Tennessee Titans next season ? As you can see I’ve my own distinct thoughts on the matter. Simply chime in with your comments as you see fit and as always thanks for the continued support as it’s greatly appreciated ! Thanks !

Picture and slide show details for your perusal .

(1)Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews (52) and defensive end C.J. Wilson stretch during NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis. The Packers face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV on Sunday, Feb. 6 in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Mike Roemer ………..

(2) Green Bay Packers linebacker A.J. Hawk, left, and defensive coordinator Dom Capers look on during NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis. The Packers face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV on Sunday, Feb. 6 in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Mike Roemer …..

(3) Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers , right, and head coach Mike McCarthy talk during an NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis. The Packers face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV on Sunday, Feb. 6 in Arlington, Texas. It now appears that budding relationship now exists between the player and coach which has blossomed into an outstanding season for both. AP Photo/Mike Roemer ……..

(4) Green Bay Packers cornerback Charles Woodson, left, and safety Nick Collins enjoy a laugh during an NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis. The Packers will face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV on Sunday, Feb. 6 in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Mike Roemer …….

(5) Arlington, Tx,. A general interior view of Cowboys Stadium as the Dallas Cowboys play against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Cowboys Stadium on October 31, 2010 in Arlington, Texas. Super Bowl XLV will pit the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Green Bay Packers on February 6, 2011. An expected worldwide television audience of 1 billion people are expected to watch the broadcast live across the globe. Domestically the NFL is expecting the audience to top Superbowl 44’s (SBXLIV) . Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images ………

(6) Head coach Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks on against the New York Jets during the 2011 AFC Championship game at Heinz Field on January 23, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Super Bowl XLV will pit the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Green Bay Packers on February 6, 2011. Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images ………….

(7) Tampa , Fl,. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates with the Vince Lombardi trophy in the locker room after defeating the Arizona Cardinals during Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Super Bowl XLV will pit the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Green Bay Packers on February 6, 2011. The player will be seeking his third Superbowl title in six years and in his third Superbowl appearance . Some extraordinary feat wouldn’t you think ? Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images ……..

[8]Pittsburgh Steelers center Doug Legursky, left, and Kyle Jolly work on blocking drills during NFL football practice in Pittsburgh, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. The Steelers will be facing the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XLV on Feb. 6, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Keith Srakocic ……..

(9) Steelers’ coach Mike Tomlin (left) is seen here with Dick LeBeau the team’s defensive coordinator . Speculation now surrounds the fact that there are a number of teams around the NFL looking to pry away the Hall of Fame player turned coach. LeBeau resolutely states if he remains in coaching then it will be with the Pittsburgh Steelers as he’s happy within the familial type environment of the organization. AP Photo/ Keith Srkaroic ……..

(10) Tennessee Titans general manager Mike Reinfeldt, right, and former head coach Jeff Fisher, left, walk to an NFL football news conference at the team’s headquarters on Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans announced on Thursday that Jeff Fisher will not remain as head coach. AP Photo/Mark Humphrey ……

(11) In this Sept. 2, 2010, file photo, Tennessee Titans coach Jeff Fisher, right, talks with Titans owner Bud Adams prior to an NFL preseason football game against the New Orleans Saints at LP Field in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans announced Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011, that Fisher will no longer be their coach. AP Photo/Dave Martin …………

(12) Vince Young #10 of the Tennessee Titans talks with head coach Jeff Fisher, offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger and trainer Brad Brown after coming in the game in the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions on November 27, 2008 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Young no longer with the team having been cut this postseason is now looking to return to the NFL . In a recent statement to the local press he offered his thoughts on why he wasn’t retained by the team but states categorically that he can contribute to a team and become a Pro Bowl caliber type of player. Getty Images/ Gregory Shamus ………..

Alan aka tophatal ……………..
01/28/11

NB: Suggested links below for your perusal

NFL news …………………

Pittsburgh Steelers

Steelers’ front office ….

Steelers’ team roster

Steelers’ 2010 schedule

Head coach Mike Tomlin

Assistant coaches

Team stats ………

Steelers’ news

Green Bay Packers

Packers’ front office …..

Packers’ team roster

Packers’ 2010 schedule ..

Head coach Mike McCarthy

Assistant coaches

Team stats ……….

Packers’ news …

Superbowl history

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Dania R

Eye candy …………………… Latin beauty Dania Ramirez

Hailie --King Mag

Hailie comes courtesy of King Magazine

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T- Pain ………………… “I’m In Love With A Stripper”

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Since When Did Mediocrity In The NFL Become Synonymous With The State of New York And In Particular New York City ?

Since When Did Mediocrity In The NFL Become Synonymous With The State of New York And In Particular New York City ?

I sat and watched three NFL games over this past weekend and in doing so I saw all three teams within New York State literally fall apart at the seams. The Buffalo Bills , New York Giants and New York Jets have respectively seen their seasons simultaneously come apart at the seams. The Bills were ripped apart like a hyena feasting on the carcass of a dead animal. So much so that Tom Brady and the New England Patriots weren’t at all tested by the lowly Bills in an AFC East divisional matchup. Suffice to say that by the second half the result of this game was a foregone conclusion .

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It’s hard to see how this Bills’ coaching staff can return to the organization next season as there’s little to really suggest that this team is actually heading in the right direction. Head coach Chan Gailey hasn’t really been able to gain the confidence of this team and there’s no reason to believe that the front office can truly believe that he’s the answer to what’s really needed for this team from a coaching standpoint. Gailey in all probability will be a coaching casualty in the offseason.

The New York Jets for all of the perceived hype surrounding this team have been literally in a downward spiral since their merciless beating ( 45-3)at the hands of the New England Patriots . And as a reminder to a somewhat opinionated patron of my site who suggested to me that Jets’ quarterback Mark Sanchez is a player who’s not restrained by the playbook of coach Rex Ryan . Anyone who witnessed what took place in the game against the Chicago Bears really needs to look intensely at the game between the two teams. Sanchez and his teammates were inept on both sides of the ball. And anyone who’s of the belief that this defense is good enough to even to stop the run much less the pass really needs to look at this team in great depth. Not only that but Sanchez when placed under a great deal of pressure becomes like a deer caught in headlights. I guess that patron really doesn’t know what the hell he’s actually talking about as he must simply watch these games through rose colored glasses ? The 38-34 loss to the Bears itself though not entirely surprising adds fuel to the fire that the Jets in recent weeks have become all too complacent and wrapped up in their own belief that they’re now amongst the elite within the NFL . Is it any wonder that Rex Ryan breathed a sigh of relief once he found out that the Jacksonville Jaguars had essentially foregone their chance of making the playoffs by losing to the
Washington Redskins ( 20-17 ) in overtime at Everbank Field (Alltel Stadium) , in Jacksonville,Florida.

Jay Cutler and the Bears’ offense were allowed to run wild all over the Jets and for any of the Jets’ fans out there they can’t be entirely happy with what they’re now witnessing from their team or the coaching staff on the whole. Rex Ryan has to be extremely disappointed with what he’s now witnessing from his team. And you’d be hard pressed to suggest that even with a favorable seeding as a wildcard in the playoffs that the New York Jets would be successful in the divisional rounds . There’s a great deal that needs to be addressed with this team on both sides of the ball.

I know that the New York Giants must be shellshocked after their shellacking by the Philadelphia Eagles . But what took place against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field where this Packers’ team led by Aaron Rodgers had several members of their roster team on the injured reserve list but they simply laid the wood to the Giants and made Tom Coughlin’s position with the team now look all the more precarious . It certainly didn’t help that the Giants turned the ball over eight times during the game with quarterback Eli Manning throwing four interceptions. I guess $100 million in this day and age doesn’t get you a great deal at all ! As to Manning being given a pass because he’s led the team to a Superbowl may well mean a lot but t the NFL nowadays has become more about what have you done for me lately and not what you did yesterday ! The Giants are now in so much of a tailspin that were they in a popularity contest their approval rating would be lower than that of the Democrats and the members of Congress and Senate . To say that the Giants are stinking up the joint would be an understatement as the team now makes fecal matter smell a great deal better than a bouquet of red roses .

The city of New York is a proud one that looks upon its professional sports franchises with a great deal of pride especially when it comes to their baseball and football teams. But in essence what those fans have been witnessing recently now seems to resemble mediocrity to the “nth degree” . As good as the teams mentioned are perceived to be it’s hard to believe that simply based on their form at present that they’re simply good enough to be even thought as being amongst the elite within the NFL at present ! And say what you will about the fans in New York but when their teams tend to play badly rarely at times do you simply hear those fans come out and be openly critical of their teams. Instead they remain obnoxious self opinionated and not always willing to accept criticism when it’s aimed their way.

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have about how all three New York teams have played in Week 16 ? And how do you now see the future of the Giants and Jets as they embark on their postseason ambitions ?

NB Week 17 schedule

NFL news

NFL Divisional Standings

NFL Team Statistics — Defense & Offense

NFL Players’ Stats …..

NFL Tie break procedures

Alan aka tophatal ……………………………………..

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Eye candy … Rosa Acosta does her bit to enhance this model courtesy of Lowrider Magazine.com

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Nikki Lowri shows that she too is a fine figure of a woman !

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It’s Been DC Or Bust ……………….. But In Reality It Was Always Going To Be A Complete Bust …… !

It’s Been DC Or Bust ……………….. But In Reality It Was Always Going To Be A Complete Bust …… !

You’d have thought with a coaching pedigree acquired over the course of his career a two time winning Superbowl coach such as Mike Shanahan would prove to be decisive ? But what’s now happening with the Washington Redskins now under his reign is proving to be not only embarrassing to his immediate legacy but also to the tenure of owner Daniel Snyder . Consider this, that since the end of the second tenure of their former Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs the Redskins have been a complete mess . With their season now in a complete tailspin the organization are now at a point where it seems that Shanahan feels that it’s best to bench the team’s starting quarterback Donovan McNabb in favor of his backup Rex Grossman . And if Grossman’s reintroduction proves to be unsuccessful then it’s left to John Beck . From thereon in who the hell cares because as by then one seriously doubts that there’ll be a Redskins’ fan out there interested in this team !

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The coach in a public statement given at the team’s headquarters in Ashburn , Virginia , Shanahan stated that he’d like to see what Grossman and third string starter John Beck has to offer the team over ‘the final three games’ of the season. If that wasn’t enough to contend with the team still has to deal with the wayward and unrepentant Albert Haynesworth and his less than productive season . The player has been benched , suspended for the remainder of the season and fined for conduct detrimental to the team. Haynesworth , however has lodged a formal complaint with NFLPA with the intent of fighting the fine. And given the details and action taken by Shanahan and his coaching staff in coming to the decision there’s a chance that the suspension could very well be rescinded by an arbitrator.

Granted at 5-8 there’s little else to suggest that the Redskins have much to fight for beyond their pride . With a season of expectation from the hiring of Mike Shanahan , his son Kyle , coaching staff and Bruce Allen as the team’s general manager it’s pretty much now safe to say that those expectations have fallen completely flat. There’s been little to suggest that the Redskins were capable of contending in the NFC East and against the division’s incumbents the Dallas Cowboys , New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles . As we all know the Cowboys’ season has faltered and with owner Jerry Jones having since fired Wade Phillips with his interim successor Jason Garrett assuming the position the Cowboys are now gauging Garrett’s tenure with a view to making the position permanent. The Eagles and Giants will meet this weekend in a game that has divisional implications as they both fight to gain a playoff berth with the winner being in the driver’s seat with regard to winning the division.

The comedic nature of what’s been happening with the Redskins doesn’t seem to have gone unnoticed with the nation’s press and furthermore the fans in the nation’s capital have to be wondering what the hell is going on ? Fedex Field in Landover, Maryland still is awash with fans for the Redskins’ home games. But that in ofitself can’t counter Shanahan’s gross mismanagement of the team and the antics we have all witnessed this season. It’s now twice that Shanahan has benched McNabb this season and what might be even more unbelievable has been the fact that the organization signed veteran quarterback to a five year $72 million deal of which $45 million was guaranteed money. That being said with the way the deal was constructed the organization does have a $3.5 million buyout clause which it appears they will actually use in releasing Donovan McNabb at the end of season. Now it’s hard to say what the future holds for McNabb given the fact this has been the most unproductive season of his veteran career. It seems improbable that there’ll be a team willing to take a chance on McNabb but no doubt given the fact that there’ll be a number of teams out there looking for some time of veteran leadership if only as a tutor to a young rookie. Something of disastrous downfall for a player who has led his former team the Philadelphia Eagles to four NFC Championship games and a Superbowl (SBXXXIX ) appearance. The saying most associated with McNabb and Eagles’ coach Andy Reid ………. “always the bridesmaid never the bride” .

Once again for Daniel Snyder it comes to a situation where he’s overpaying for talent that in reality has been something of an immense failure. From my own perspective it appears that the game has left Mike Shanahan behind and his abilities as a coach has to now come into question. Consider this, while in final years as coach of the Denver Broncos having relieved then quarterback Jake Plummer in favor of their then first round draft pick (2006) Jay Cutler the Broncos never made the playoffs and the coach’s record over that period has been a meager 22-28 including his tenure this season with the Washington Redskins . One could say that much of that malaise came down to the fact that the Broncos talent wise has been a mess and that’s most certainly been the case given what we have all witnessed this season with the team under Shanahan’s successor Josh McDaniels who has since been fired by team owner Pat Bowlen . McDaniels has been succeeded by Eric Studesville as the interim head coach and as of now the Broncos’ season still remains in an abyss .

With the regular season about to come to an end it appears that Shanahan now believes this latest maneuver to be his best option. But it’s becoming abundantly clear that Shanahan has no belief in either Haynesworth which given the present circumstances is understandable. In the case of McNabb it’s hard to see what he was trying to achieve much less do in acquiring the player to begin with as there were always risks. Fundamentally the team wasn’t that sound to begin with on either side of the ball and it’s clear that Shanahan and his coaching staff have failed to address those issues straight off the bat. Kyle Shanahan who has been given the role as the team’s offensive coordinator has produced nothing that would indicate that the Redskins offensively were good enough to compete within its own division much less the conference and the NFL as a whole. The team’s productivity can be best described as being anemic in terms of its offense. And defensively it certainly leaves a great deal to be desired . Injuries asides the Redskins simply aren’t a cohesive unit and they lack leadership both on and off the field of play.

Now with the upcoming NFL Draft it’s clear that the Washington Redskins feel that their greatest need will be a quarterback . And with the likes of Andrew Luck , Kellen Moore , Cameron Newton , Colin Kapernick amongst those who may well declare themselves eligible for the NFL it will be interesting to see the steps taken by Shanahan and his staff. And given the money that Dan Snyder has been known to have spent over the years could it be that we’re about to see another maelstrom and inane stupidity by the Redskins ? The ongoing troubles with the the organization isn’t just about the talent but also the mindset of Shanahan as a coach and whether or not the game has really passed him by. I believe that to be the case but in reality Snyder and the front office clearly believe otherwise and it’s clear that the ongoing problems there in Washington has nothing short of being a bust and it will continue to be that way for the foreseeable future !.

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

Where do you see things going for the Redskins and what of the future of Donovan McNabb and where do you as such see him ending up if indeed he still has a future in the NFL ?

NB: This piece was completed prior to Sunday’s scheduled game against the Dallas Cowboys .

Click here for the latest NFL news …….

Click here for the for the NFL results from Week 15

NFL Standings ……. By Conference

By Division

By League

😉 —- 😛

Alan aka tophatal ………………………………. 😉

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Eye candy ……… Tv reality star Deelishis’ a favorite of rap star Flava Flav’ on his eponymous reality show ‘Flavor of Love’ . Courtesy of XXL Magazine

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Deelishis

Someone needs to put a cork in that . What do you think ?

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Rick Ross …………‘Aston Martin Music’ feat’g Drake & Chrissette Michelle

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You Know It’s Been A Bad Day At The Office When………… Insert Your Own Thoughts Here ……………..

You Know It’s Been A Bad Day At The Office When………… Insert Your Own Thoughts Here ……………..

As much as I love the world sports and everything as such of interest that happens within it. I can’t but see the fun side of it all when I either see that the past and present meet head on in terms of a brooding controversy. Or even when it’s amongst the peers of today within a certain sports arena .

Having seen the ballyhoo made over the Chicago Bears acquiring Jay Cutler from the Denver Broncos via a trade that sent Kyle Orton to the Broncos in the opposite direction. It was felt that the Bears would improve exponentially and become a serious threat to the apparent dominance of the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC North . By the way has Brett Favre come to a decision as of yet ? I mean I’ve not heard from those loyal band of followers of his, from ESPN report on anything concerning on him as of late , including his bowel movements throughout the day and the mere fact that his wife Deanna has apparently been refusing Brett his conjugal requests . But that’s another story for another day.

Coming off another disappointing season within the division and posting a record of 7-9 , can we essentially say that the Bears have been a profound disappointment to their fans and their owners alike ? Much was made that Cutler a “Pro Bowl caliber” would provide this team with the thing it was said to be missing. Personally , to me the Pro Bowl means absolute s_it in the greater order of things when you consider the game itself is essentially a bus-man’s holiday. I mean when has it meant anything to a player other than the fact that he can become “fat” in his wallet by way of his meeting certain productive targets on the field of play as part of his contract ? It’s not as if “his peers” actually vote him in to be part of the event itself. It’s left to a bunch of NFL writers casting their ballots , who for all sense and purpose show about as much common sense and intelligence as some members of Congress . And as we all know common sense , intelligence and ” Congress” shouldn’t necessarily be mentioned in the same sentence.


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Slide show gallery for your perusal .

This upcoming season Bears’ coach Lovie Smith will be on the “hot seat” and if he and his coaching staff fail to deliver then he’s bound to be shown the door ! Bears’ GM Jerry Angelo and Director of Player Personnel Tim Ruskell the architects of this “team” know full well that the fans will not tolerate much more from this team and the organization itself cannot think that they will. That’d show their complete and utter stupidity if they were to allow things to carry on as they are.

Three years removed from a Superbowl __(SB XLI ) appearance and their subsequent 29-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts . The reverberations from that loss can still be felt to this day. It was the sense of embarrassment to the fact that they severely underperformed and it certainly did not help that the one player on this team often thought of as their vocal leader was nowhere to be seen. Brian Urlacher over the years can either be described as a great player or quite possibly one of the best defensive players of his generation. That being said over the last few years , his play and skills have diminished to the point where one can no longer look at him as a real threat. Whereas, the ever present Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens still strikes fear into opposing players . Need I say anymore on the matter ?

Courtesy of ESPN.com in conjunction with ESPN Chicago

Ditka backs Sayers vs. Urlacher

Mike Ditka joined the chorus of Chicago Bears Hall of Famers who have come to the support of Gale Sayers in his controversy with linebacker Brian Urlacher.

The war of words started May 4, when Sayers criticized quarterback Jay Cutler’s performance in 2009, questioned the future of coach Lovie Smith if the Bears struggle again this season, and wondered how well Urlacher will come back from season-ending wrist surgery.

Urlacher responded in a Chicago Tribune article Thursday by ripping Sayers for criticizing the Bears and questioning Sayers’ credentials because the Hall of Fame running back never won a championship, or even a playoff game.

“I like Brian Urlacher a lot, I think he’s one heck of a football player,” Ditka said Friday on “Mike & Mike In The Morning ” on ESPN Radio. “It’s unfortunate to have this in the Bears family. I don’t like it.

“I don’t think Gale was being that critical, honestly. I think somebody asked him a question. They asked him about the state of the Chicago Bears. He answered very honestly what he thought about Cutler. He answered very honestly what he thought about the coach. Brian’s coming off an injury. Brian’s a great football player, he has to stay healthy, there’s no question about that. Nobody can play when they’re hurt.

“So I don’t know where it was so inflammatory. I didn’t see that. And I understand, your feathers get ruffled here and there. When somebody sees something they think is wrong, I don’t think it’s wrong to say it. Sometimes criticism pointed in the right direction can help you.”

Sayers played from 1965 to 1971, exclusively with the Bears. Ditka played from 1961 to 1966 with Chicago, and he said criticism that Sayers never won a championship is misguided.

“[Dick] Butkus never won a Super Bowl,” said Ditka, who coached the Bears to the Super Bowl XX title. “Was there a better linebacker? I don’t know. I don’t think there’s a better linebacker.

“Super Bowls are won by great teams, not necessarily by great individual players.”

Butkus backed Sayers, and he said he’s also been frustrated by the Bears, who haven’t made the playoffs since losing to the Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLI.
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And there’s no denying that Cutler and the Bears failed to live up to expectations last season. From a results’ standpoint with each passing week it were as if we were witnessing the gradual regression of this team. Lovie Smith for his part seem to play this all down as if it were nothing more than a team having made one or two slip ups along the way. Clearly he’s overlooked the fact that the fans aren’t so patient with his or the players’ predicament. And now with Hall of Famers __ Dick Butkus , Gale Sayers and even the team’s former coach Mike Ditka now weighing on the team’s plight. The triumvirate in question at one point or another have contributed greatly to the history and legacy of the Bears. So anything that they ma well have to say on the matter cannot be overlooked or met with just another matter of an outsider looking in and just giving the press a proverbial sound byte. However, it appears that Urlacher takes umbrage with the fact that the team and Cutler in particular has come in for a great deal of criticism from Gale Sayers. And former Bears’ great has directed his criticisms squarely at the team’s quarterback. Some might say that the criticism is unjustified whereas others may well feel differently. One thing is clear however time is running short for the team , its coach and in particular for Urlacher. He has spent more time gaining headlines for his off the field sightings with socialites , catwalk models and actresses, rather than for his work ethic and play on the field. At the end of the day it has to be asked what profession does Urlacher , himself believe that he’s in ? Is he a professional athlete or a celebrity wannabe ? In doing so he becomes fodder for the press and paparazzi alike .


If Urlacher wants to prove the criticism to be without merit, then this season he and his teammates had better set out to prove those naysayers wrong. Otherwise he might as well shut the hell up and accept the fact that he and this team simply aren’t good enough to win a Superbowl or much else for that matter.

So after all of the denials and asinine excuses as how his tests came up positive for illicit banned substances. Now disgraced and former Tour de France winner Floyd Landis has admitted what many of us had known all along. The disgraced former Tour winner who has since had his Tour victory rescinded has admitted that he has been using anabolic steroids and “HGH” as part of his regimen for years . He’s also reiterated that the sport of cycling is profligate with the abuse of both substances. Be that as it may , here are the facts as we know it, Landis is a liar and a cheat ! And for all of the xenophobic supporters of Landis at the time. How’s it now feel to find that this bastard lied like the p_ssy that he now comes across being ? Not fully content with accepting and being held accountable for his own actions. Landis now takes aim at 7 time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong , claiming that the cyclist also has taken many of the substances in question. In making those claims also Landis states that he has no categoric proof that Armstrong took anything illicit other than mere rumors and conjecture . I guess when the sh_t rolls downhill and hits you right in the face the only thing you can do to fend off even more ridicule is to misdirect the public to look elsewhere.

Armstrong having overcome brain and testicular cancer was always bound to be the center of attention once he started to win cycling’s most prestigious event an unprecedented seven successive times. But the fact of the matter is , having been tested by WADA and by UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale _[sports international governing body]) there has never been any concrete proof that Armstrong has taken anything illicit , nor has he ever tested positive in or out of competition. So what if anything is Landis trying to prove ? He’s an even bigger ass than first thought ? Armstrong for his part has tried to stay above the fray concerning this. But given the fact that the sport of cycling has been rife with cheating for a number years and the fact that it was only until recently that the sport’s governing ( UCI ) body decided that they would be proactive and address the issue head on . We would still continue to look at and treat the sport with a great deal of disdain. The sad fact is , what we’re now seeing in the sport is no different than the multitude of sins that were being exhibited and perpetrated in the sport of baseball and the prolific use of both steroids and HGH by the players. And even now with the MLB ____ hierarchy and MLPA __(union) working in conjunction to have a strict , coherent and cohesive drug testing policy in place. We are still seeing a number of major league ballplayers testing positive for banned substances. Kind of makes one wonder what we now deem to be acceptable within the world of sports ?

As the NBA’s postseason unfold we could be on the verge of seeing both conference finals turn into uncomfortable blowouts. The Boston Celtics have a rather commanding 2-0 lead over the listless Orlando Magic . And in the Western Conference Finals the Los Angeles Lakers has kept its home-field advantage in tact by opening up also a 2-0 lead over the Phoenix Suns .

In the midst of this all the Suns’ Amar`e Stoudemire has seen fit act like a petulant child by stating that the Lakers’ Lamar Odom was simply lucky in playing the way he did in game one of the conference finals. Stoudemire fails to indicate that with Odom coming off the bench to ignite the Lakers with a double-double of 19 points, 19 rebounds , it has in essence all but doomed the Suns’ postseason ambitions. And we beg the question can the Suns save grace by at least trying to eke out one win in this series ?

It is becoming abundantly clear that the Suns’ coach Alvin Gentry is being outmatched and out-coached by his divisional counterpart Phil Jackson of the Lakers. And having shown some semblance of defense in the earlier rounds. Now for all sense and purpose the Phoenix Suns simply haven’t an answer for Kobe Bryant or anyone else on the Lakers’ roster who just happens to show their offensive capabilities during this series . To put it bluntly, this is like taking candy from a baby !

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

Game two provided us with all the evidence we need to know that when the Lakers make the NBA Finals they will go into the series as an overwhelming favorite against the Easter Conference’s representative . The Lakers “dusted” the Suns in such a commanding way that it probably has most among us believing , are either the Celtics or Magic capable of stopping this Lakers’ juggernaut ? The Lakers’ 124-112 victory was about as emphatic as one would come to expect from such a dominant team.

Well those are just my thoughts as it concerns the subject matter in terms of the title ……..”You Know It’s Been A Bad Day At The Office When………… Insert Your Own Thoughts Here ……………..
. What specific sports issues that have caught your attention as of late has you thinking along these lines ? By all means chime on in with a comment and as usual I’ll look forward to responding in kind. Stay safe and have a great weekend !

Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals was won by the Lakers 128-107 .


Alan Parkins aka tophatal ………………

Joe Budden ……………….“Pump It Up”

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50 cent feat’g Lloyd Banks …………………..“On Fire”

The Sad Things Is The Chicago Bears Are What I Thought They’d Be Just Another Average Team Behind The Arm of A Much Overhyped QB ‘nough Said !

There comes a time when you’ve got to call a spade , a spade and a shovel , a shovel. And as the old adage goes “……….if it walks like a duck and quacks like duck . Then it has to be a duck. It can’t be anything else now, can it ” ?

So what are we to make of the much hyped Chicago Bears (4-4) and their equally over-hyped and their said to be talented star quarterback , Jay Cutler ? Much has been made as to what the Pro Bowl caliber quarterback would bring to the table for this Lovie Smith coached team. And the truth of the matter is, not one of those much heralded claims has yet to pan out for the Bears this season. If anything, Cutler and the Bears have been average at best. And for the likes of the talking dunder-heads and paeans within Bristol, Connecticut at ESPN , who hyped up the Bears after the acquisition was made for Cutler in exchange for Kyle Orton being shipped to the Denver Broncos (6-2). My question would be , who’s eating crow now ?

Arizona Cardinals' running back Chris Beanie Wells breaks away  from  the  Chicago  Bears'   Danieal  Manning  in  an  NFL  game played  at Soldier  Field , Chicago , Illinois,.  The Cardinals  would  romp to a   41-21 rout  of  the   Chicago Bears .   picture appears courtesy of  getty images/  Johnathan Daniel ...........

Arizona Cardinals’ running back Chris ‘Beanie’ Wells breaks away from the Chicago Bears’ Danieal Manning in an NFL game played at Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois,. The Cardinals would romp to a 41-21 rout of the Chicago Bears. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Johnathan Daniel ……….

And when looks down the roster of the Chicago Bears , one can’t help but ask. Why is a team, said to be laden with so much alleged talent continue to struggle the way that it does ? It’s not as if Smith and his coaching staff are mediocre. Clearly the problem with the Chicago Bears, lies in the fact that this team has yet to find its rhythm and play with consistency. Furthermore , there appears to be an apparent lack of leadership on the field of play. And if Cutler, as has been often pointed out wants to be seen as an elite quarterback in the NFL. Then it doesn’t mean just being able to toss the ball like a gunslinger in a shootout. It also demands that he leads a team with presence and authority. And that’s something that he’s yet to do, despite his time spent in the league.

Bears' coach  Lovie Smith  watches as  his  defensive players  leave the  field late in the  game  against  the  Arizona  Cardinals.   picture appears courtesy  of getty images/ Johnathan Daniel .............

Bears’ coach Lovie Smith watches as his defensive players leave the field late in the game against the Arizona Cardinals. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Johnathan Daniel ……..

It is tough enough that the Bears have to go up against a rejuvenated Minnesota Vikings’ team led by that ageless wonder Brett Favre , with the league’s best running back Adrian Peterson in tow. And what with the lackluster performances by the Green Bay Packers and the underwhelming Detroit Lions. It was thought that the Bears would pose some sort of threat to the Vikings within the division. Well, that hasn’t been the case , nor is it likely to be ! The Chicago Bears have been so diabolically atrocious, that if the situation continues to get any worse, then Lovie Smith’s own future might be in danger. And this coming from a franchise ,barely three years removed from its appearance in SBXLI. Where the team would go on to lose to the Peyton Manning led Indianapolis Colts (29-17). Manning would go on to named the game’s MVP. And the Colts’ coach Tony Dungy would become the first African American to coach an NFL team to victory in the Super Bowl. From that historical high where the two coaches in Super Bowl XLI happened to be of African American ethnicity. We’ve seen the fate of the Bears , seemingly take a nose dive into the abyss of mediocrity.

And while the fates of Cutler and Kyle Orton seem to have gone in opposite directions. One can’t help but notice how the Bears’ fans must now be feeling. As much as they may well have derided their former player. To seem him go on to play for the Broncos in the way that he has. Well, it has to have led those very same fans to question who got the better end of the deal ? Broncos’ coach, Josh McDaniels has to be happy with the play of Orton and the fact that he commands the respect of his teammates, there in Denver. Can the same thing be said of Cutler at this present moment in time ?

Jay  Cutler of  the  Chicago Bears   as  he  scrambles in the  backfield  while  looking  for  a Bears'   receiver to  make a  pass  to.   In  the  game  played at Soldier  Field ,  the   Bears   would  suffer their  worse  loss  of the  season   being  completely  outplayed  and  annihilated    41-21 by the  Arizona  Cardinals .   picture  appears courtesy of getty images/  Johnathan  Daniel ..........

Jay Cutler of the Chicago Bears as he scrambles in the backfield while looking for a Bears’ receiver to make a pass to. In the game played at Soldier Field , the Bears would suffer their worse loss of the season being completely outplayed and annihilated 41-21 by the Arizona Cardinals. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Johnathan Daniel ………

Statistically the Chicago Bears aren’t where they need to be as a team. On offense they rank 16th in (22.5pts-ppg),18th in total offense (332.4 yds-per game),11th in passing yds (241.9 per game), 28th in rushing (90.5 yds per game). On the defensive side of the ball things don’t actually get much better in the relevant categories either. They’re merely seem to be average at best ,with them allowing 23.9 pts per game(rank 22nd), 326 yds of total defense (rank 15th), passing yds allowed 206.5 yds per game (rank 12th), rushing yds allowed 119.5 per game (rank 21st). And overall as a team they barely register a blip on the charts as a mainstay in the pertinent categories.

One might question the coaching of Lovie Smith and that of his coaching staff . Wherein, he’s assisted by Defensive Coordinator, Bob Babich and on offense by Ron Turner , who oversees the offensive duties as the team’s Offensive Coordinator. There appears to be no real unison between the contingents on either side of the ball and how they apply themselves to the task at hand. And this may well be one of the inherent problems for the team, as a whole. As to how they’ll go about remedying the factors that have arisen. Well, that’s down Smith and his staff.

 Kurt Warner of  the  Arizona  Cardinals  makes  his way out of the  pocket as he's  pursued  by the   Bears  Anthony  Adams .  Also  assisting  on  the  play  for   the  Cardinals  is   Reggie  Wells  seen to the  left  of  Adams.   picture  appears  courtesy  of  getty  images/  Johnathan  Daniel  .............

Kurt Warner (13) of the Arizona Cardinals makes his way out of the pocket as he’s pursued by the Bears Anthony Adams (95). Also assisting on the play for the Cardinals is Reggie Wells, seen to the left of Adams. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Johnathan Daniel
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Courtesy of Associated Press and NFL.com

Bears’ Harris apologizes for punching defenseless player

Associated Press

LAKE FOREST, Ill. — Saying he was embarrassed and that he has to control himself, Chicago Bears defensive tackle Tommie Harris apologized Monday for throwing a punch at Arizona Cardinals offensive lineman Deuce Lutui.

Harris was ejected on the fourth play from scrimmage of Sunday’s game after he and Lutui wound up on the ground on a run play. Harris apologized to teammates, Bears fans and to Lutui.

“I was embarrassed, especially for my actions,” Harris said. “I apologized to him yesterday, called Larry (Fitzgerald) and had a chance to apologize to him. I just wanted to apologize to my fans first off, and the little kids out there that saw that action. I shouldn’t have behaved in that manner, and I apologized to my teammates, and I’ll make up for it.”

The Bears’ defense has big problems following a 41-21 blowout loss to the Cardinals and they start with Harris. The three-time Pro Bowl player could be suspended by the league.

“No excuse,” coach Lovie Smith said. “Whenever you do something to get kicked out of a football game, a tough game like that where you need everyone, it’s never a good thing. Tommie realizes he screwed up.”

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The loss of middle linebacker, Brian Urlacher , who’s viewed as the heart and soul of the team. It has meant that the Chicago Bears have had to make use of players such as Hunter Hillenmeyer and Nick Roach to fill that immense gap, that Urlacher proceeded to fill on the Bears’ defense. And with the ten year veteran being lost to the team for the season. Well, filling that gap has proven to be something of an immense problem. It was felt that they might have pursued Derrick Brooks, formerly of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a stop gap , for the position. But it would appear that it wasn’t necessarily a direction that they wanted to pursue. A tell-tale sign, if ever there was one. Replacing an often injured veteran with another it’s known is on the downside of his career. It never seems to work out and that was the primary thinking behind not pursuing Brooks.

Ron Turner as the team’s offensive coordinator , has at his disposal, the talents of Devin Hester, Matt Forte , Garrett Wolfe , Earl Bennett and Greg Olsen. But either through the accompanying injuries or the mere fact , that there seems to be nothing going right for the Chicago Bears. As they labor under the pressure of having live up to expectations of the Bears’ fans and the community at large. These are some very trying times for the franchise,the fans and no doubt for Lovie Smith ! The team’s offense is anemic and Jay Cutler hasn’t shown anywhere near the perceived form that many believe that he has. And in Cutler’s case, when much of that hype, comes from the mere fact that you felt you were in the same class as former Broncos’ great, John Elway. You can well understand why it is now, that some are of the belief that the Bears have been sold down the river, in acquiring the player.

Much has been made, that Jay Cutler is a Pro Bowl caliber quarterback. And while that may be true , what in essence is the Pro Bowl anyway ? I mean, there’s nothing at all tangible in making an appearance there. The game itself is meaningless and the accolade, though thought to meaningful , isn’t really acknowledgment by one’s peers. It’s merely the NFL’s idea of throwing a party , once the regular season has ended and also rewarding the players . As if they’re not already well rewarded financially,to begin with ? Cutler , to my mind is everything that personifies what’s wrong with a player who believes that he’s capable of leading a team. But in essence, he has yet to show the qualities that are needed in achieving that success. Time and time again, he’s mentioned as being amongst the elite quarterbacks within the NFL. To my mind, that’s akin in trying to ascertain that Rosie O’Donnell shares the same beauty traits of Halle’ Berry or Megan Fox for that matter ! It just ain’t gonna happen ! And Jay Cutler is not amongst the elite quarterbacks within the NFL ! ‘nough said !

NFC North Divisional Standings :

NFC North Team W L T Pct PF PA Net Pts TD Home Road Div Pct Conf Pct Non-Conf Streak Last 5
Minnesota Vikings 7 1 0 .875 244 174 70 29 3-0 4-1 3-0 1.000 5-0 1.000 2-1 1W 4-1
Green Bay Packers 4 4 0 .500 215 172 43 25 2-2 2-2 2-2 .500 3-3 .500 1-1 2L 2-3
Chicago Bears 4 4 0 .500 180 191 -11 21 3-1 1-3 1-1 .500 2-3 .400 2-1 1L 2-3
Detroit Lions 1 7 0 .125 133 237 -104 14 1-3 0-4 0-3 .000 1-6 .143 0-1 5L 0-5

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Megan Fox

Megan Fox of ‘Transformers’ fame.

And given the choice between Megan Fox , Halle’ Berry and Rosie O’Donnell. I think it’s pretty safe to say that the majority of guys’ll go with Halle and Megan over Rosie !

The delightful  Halle' Berry

The delightful Halle’ Berry !