Not 1, not 2, but 3 sub .500 teams in the top 10. I know everyone was expecting the Cards, Panthers, and Bengals to be really good this year... but they haven't been. The Cards lost to a really good Pats team, beat a mediocre Bucs team, and got embarrassed by an embarrassing Bills team (that you have ranked in the 20s). The Panthers have a bit more of an excuse as their losses have been to mostly good teams (the Broncos and Vikings) but I am still not buying a #5 ranking for a 1-2 team who's only win came against a horrible 49ers team. Lastly you said it all about how the Bengals have performed so far this year. These are not good teams this year, shouldn't their ranking reflect that?
While your brief analysis of the Panther's Oline has a lot of truth to it, I'm not sure it's yet fair to say that their is a problem in the 2ndary. The rooks are playing pretty well and definitely aren't the problem. Another is that they can't get a pass rush because the QBs are having success throwing the ball for short, quick, Brady esque passes, but when throwing deeper, the interior rush at least is getting there, and the corners have been impressing. While they are no Norman at this point, I can say that they are one of the few bright spots so far. The main problem is that the Oline can't block, and special teams can't tackle.
The premise: Coming off a Super Bowl victory, the Patriots open the 2013 season with a blowout win. Unfortunately, they get into trouble for Spygate II. As punishment, Roger Goodell orders the Patriots to fire Bill Belichick and replace him with Emmitt Smith. Three years later, the Patriots beat the Bears in the Super Bowl, 2-0. After the game, Emmitt announced his retirement.
This is a weekly feature that will take a newspaper reporter's perspective and follow Emmitt through his post-retirement days.
By Alex Rodriguez, Special to the NFL Bible Network Friday, Nov. 24, 2017
We don't know why the NFL decided to pit the Browns and the Lions together in a nationally televised game on Thanksgiving. The game was completely uneventful, save for one occasion in which Brandon Weeden had to get some assistance from his teammates.
"I shoiled my underwearsh shonny," Weeden told an inquisitive media member afterward, explaining why the entire team huddled around him before bringing him a new pair of underpants.
Weeden, who had to use a walker to get around the field in between plays, completed just one pass in 27 attempts. He fumbled eight times and threw 10 interceptions, five of which were returned for touchdowns.
"I'm sho glad my team won, shonny," Weeden told another journalist. "Wait, where am I again, shonny? And where am I? I forget what year it ish."
It should have been obvious that the Browns would lose. After all, the Lions entered the game as an 84-point favorite. They narrowly covered, winning 87-2. Still, this game was never in doubt. Not for one single second. Well, that was the case for everyone except for CBS' newest NFL analyst.
"I'm not sure we can say, with absolutely certainty, that the Lions have won this game," declared the new CBS analyst.
It must be said that this new analyst may not be completely familiar with football, given that he covered political news for another media conglomerate for years. This analyst, of course, is for FOX News employee Karl Rove.
"When I look at the numbers - and believe me, I've done the extensive math on this - there is no proof that states the Browns have lost this game," Rove said while shifting through pieces of paper. "There are still lots of factors that haven't been accounted for."
There are lots of factors unaccounted for? What could possibly be unaccounted for in an 87-2 victory?
"The sack numbers haven't come in yet," Rove stammered. "There are no sack numbers yet, and the sack numbers are projected to be heavily in favor of the Browns... and, and don't forget about the drops either. We don't have those figures calculated yet, and the Lions were projected to drop more passes than Cleveland in this contest. I'm refreshing this NFL.com page every few seconds, so it can't be confirmed that the Browns lost."
Rove, who had sweat dripping down his brow, was escorted to the back room of the stadium, where he spoke with official Mike Carey.
"Karl, I understand your frustration, but the Browns lost, and there's just no doubt about it," Carey said. "Believe me, Karl. We crunched the numbers, and there are too many things going against the Browns."
"No, that can't be possible, or wait, at least I think you should admit that you called the game prematurely," Rove replied.
Carey laughed and shook his head. "Karl, I can tell you that with 99.9995-percent certainty, the Browns lost this game."
Rove beamed. "Ah-ha! So you admit that there's still a chance!"
Hours later, it was revealed that Rove placed $400,000 on the Browns' moneyline. Why he would do this when it was a foregone conclusion the Lions would win is beyond us, but we have to believe that like after his previous nonsensical tirade in the 2012 Presidential Election, Rove will be looking for employment elsewhere quite soon.
JERRY JONES FINALLY FIRES HIMSELF
By Alex Rodriguez, Special to the NFL Bible Network Friday, Nov. 24, 2017
Emmitt's plane is going to land in Florida on Saturday morning, so we have another Thanksgiving-related story to share with you. It's actually shocking, breaking news that we're proud to share with you - even if Howard Eskin of FOX 29 and WIP in Philadelphia hijacks our story and claims it as his hours later.
It's official. Jerry Jones has fired himself. Dallas fans can now rejoice.
"I've thought about it now for a while, and I think it's finally time to let go," said a sullen Jones. "I never thought this day would come, but it's time for me to step out of the limelight and let someone else have an opportunity."
Jones then pressed both hands against his face and began to weep. His wife, Miles Austin-Jones, was there for support.
"Jerry's had quite a run," Austin-Jones said. "I can't imagine being in his shoes right now, giving up on something I love to do. When the day comes when I have to retire, I can only hope I handle it with just as much grace as my loving husband."
After nearly 10 minutes of uncontrollably sobbing, Jones wiped the tears from his eyes and told us that it was time that he returned to his general-managing duties.
Wait, what? Didn't he just announce that he fired himself, as Eskin will report 11 hours after us?
"Excuse me? You thought I was retiring from being the general manager?" Jones asked in complete disbelief. "When I was talking about firing myself, I wasn't referring to the general manager position. Why would I fire myself as the general manager? I'm doing a great job."
So, what did Jones fire himself from exactly? Apparently, he axed himself as the stadium's popcorn vendor.
"I love selling popcorn; it's been a dream of mine ever since I was a little kid," Jones revealed. "When you scoop popcorn out of the machine, put it into a bag and give it to a smiling customer, it's the best feeling in the world. I'm just sad I have to give it up."
This whole revelation took us unawares, but we at least were quick enough to ask Jones why he dismissed himself as the team's popcorn vendor.
"Well, it's certainly not because I was doing a bad job; in fact, I consider myself to be the greatest popcorn vendor in this fine country," Jones said. "Unfortunately, I have too many things on my plate, and I must admit that I'm getting up there in age. I realized that if I'm to continue to be a razor-sharp general manager, then I had to give something up, and that something is selling popcorn."
Jones then operated the popcorn machine one last time. He tried gathering the popcorn with his scooper, but it took him several tries to get the job done. Upon further inspection, it appeared as though the scooper had holes in it.
"What, you think I should use a better popcorn scooper?" Jones asked when he noticed us staring at him quizzically. "This popcorn scooper is doing a great job. It has a bright future ahead of itself. Unfortunately, that future will not be with me."
Well, there you have it. Sorry to disappoint you, Cowboy fans, but it appears as though you're stuck with Jones and his insecurity in terms of relinquishing any sort of power to anyone else in the organization.
That's it for us. Enjoy Black Friday. Oh, and follow @howardeskin for his breaking news about Jones' self-firing in 11 hours.