Friday, January 9, 2009

15 comments Picking With Bill Simmons

Fridays are my favorite day of the week and not because I sometimes actually get a Saturday off work but because I get low hanging fruit that I don't have to think about, I can just let the words come to me. Still no Sports Gal, and I am wondering where she has gone. Has she left Bill, is she tired of his writing desecrating her good writing? This is the part of the year where Bill makes up awards that reference, this may shock you, pop culture and connects those awards with sports. Also he goes overload on the same jokes he has always used in this column, so get excited for that. Let's take a look.

Even Romeo Crennel is more alive than my dream for an 11-0 playoff run.

Bill starts the column off with a good strong, not funny joke.

When it was unclear whether a Minnesota player had re-established himself outside the end zone before downing a punt on the Philly 2-yard line, the officials conferred as both Andy Reid and Brad Childress held red flags waiting to dispute the call either way. That's right, two of the worst challengers in football history were going head to head! This wasn't just the most exciting moment of the weekend; we're going to be hard-pressed to top it for 2009.

Yet another example of why Jimmey Kimmel hired Bill. This is hard hitting, great comedy. Actually, I think I could hear jokes exactly like this every single day for every minute of every day and that is why Bill's columns are just so hilarious.

How much is 10-15 yards of field position (either way) worth 10-12 times in a 60-minute game? Ten points? Fourteen? How do we calculate this?

I don't know of a really complex way to measure this, but let's use this thing called "math" to figure it out. There may have been no math courses at Holy Cross or you were too busy puking into a trash can with your other white male friends.

This is very simple but let's try:

Take the length of a team's average drive over the course of the year.

Then either add/subtract 15 yards from that and ascertain where the average drive for a team would end if they lose/gained an extra 15 yards. Of course then you would have to factor in the accuracy of the kicker's leg and other variables but I think it can be ascertained. Actually don't listen to what I just wrote, it may be wrong, just do what you always do and make something up.

Look for Bill to get help on this and have an answer next week.

The Bird Who Crapped On My T-Shirt Right Before the 2004 Baseball Playoffs Award for "Best omen heading into a game"

Oh that's right. The Red Sox won the World Series in 2004 by beating the Yankees in the ALCS. I had completely forgotten about that since the last time Bill mentioned it, which was probably his last column.

Let's add this to Playoff Manifesto 5.0 and make it the new No. 1 rule: Any time Matt Millen inexplicably appears on a studio show, picks a playoff team to win and seems confident about that pick, bet the house on the other team as fast as you humanly can."

I wish the No. 1 rule in Playoff Manifesto 5.0 was "there will be no more playoff manifestos" but Bill does this to keep himself modern, so I have been thwarted yet again.

What's with the closed quotes after "...humanly can?" There were no quotes at the beginning of the sentence so no need to close the quotes. It's sad for ESPN that a blogger is better at proofreading columns than the editors and Bill are.

Who would ever eat a McNugget without immediately thinking, "I am eating a McNugget?" And what hostess would lie and pretend she made them herself?

Another example of the hard hitting journalism Bill provides. Before I get told for the 1,000 time that Bill is not supposed to be a hard hitting journalist, he is supposed to be entertaining, I ask you this, "is this comment entertaining?"

I thought not.

If McDonald's is going to have an ad where a woman deceives her guests, it should use their secretly delicious chocolate chip cookies, which the Sports Gal brought to a shower one time last year and nearly pretended she made herself before confessing.

So the answer to "what hostess would lie and pretend she made them herself" is probably the same answer as "what guest would bring cookies to a shower and almost pretend she made them herself. "

That answer is: Bill's wife (ex-wife, separated wife?), the Sports Gal. Where is she?

(Ladies and gentlemen, the Minnesota Vikings!)

The first 10 times he wrote "Ladies and gentlemen, (person/team that is not good)" it was mildly amusing. The next 500 times he did it, not funny at all and mildly annoying. It has to the point where you know when Bill is going to type this phrase. He always has an email/text from someone complaining about their team and how hopeless it all is, followed by Bill typing, "Ladies and gentlemen, (fill in blank)"

On the other hand, we keep getting mad at Buck for refusing to get excited about anything --

What's this "we" shit? Do you have a squirrel in your pocket you share your thoughts with at times? I don't care if an announcer gets excited about something, Bill is the one that needs the announcer to yell the play by play call at him like the most amazing thing in the world has ever happened.

I wanted my Sunday play-by-play guy to be as brutally hung over as I was.

I have always wanted my play-by-play guy to be competent, call the players by their correct names, not say anything stupid, and I don't really care if I viewed him as like me. Bill wants everyone to seem like him.

On a related note, Thom Brenneman was very impressed with Tim Tebow wasn't he? He said something to the tune of spending five minutes in a room with him would change your life. Maybe an overstatement?

After studying it from every angle, I locked in on Arizona and Baltimore (my favorite of the four) and already liked Indy; because the Philly-Minny game was a crapshoot, that meant Minnesota had to be the fourth pick. What I should have done: Take Arizona, Indy, Baltimore and Philly and aim for 3-1. But I was trying to be a hero -- in this case, finish 4-0 -- and inadvertently broke Rule 14 of the Playoff Manifesto, which specifically says, "Don't try to be a hero, just try to make money." Call it a lesson learned. By my wallet.

I think there is a 37.6% chance that Bill is a degenerate gambler. The sad part is that he doesn't appear to be too successful at it. I thought the one thing he would not do is bet on Tavaris Jackson and he just happened to do exactly that.

You might remember my writing a joke about Phil Rivers dropping F-bombs last week. Angry e-mails came in from the moment that column posted -- apparently Rivers is a devoutly religious man who takes pride in not swearing. Um, how would I know this again? I'm the same guy who had no idea Larry Fitzgerald's father was a sportswriter until last weekend. I learn things all the time. That's what happens when you follow sports; you can't possibly know everything.

I agree that Bill can not possibly know everything about every sports star in the world at all times. I don't know how you follow sports though and just find out Larry Fitzgerald's dad was a sportswriter. Where the hell was Bill's head when Fitzgerald got drafted and we were treated to 100 mentions that he played catch with Cris Carter and the other Vikings when he was younger?

Irresponsible journalism? Who said I was a journalist? I just advised Joe Buck to become a drunk a few paragraphs ago!

This is apparently Bill's response to those that accuse him of saying things that are wrong in his columns. He pleads ignorance. Do you know who said you were a journalist? The big ESPN that is above every single one of your columns and the fact you get paid tons of money to talk about sports. You also write words on a piece of paper to get published. That seems to indicate that you are a journalist of some type.

I am not mentioning this as an apology -- seriously, I would never, ever, ever, ever apologize for something this dumb. And really, part of the problem with this country right now is that anyone with a forum kowtows in situations like this instead of sticking up for free speech and the right to make a f---ing harmless joke from time to time

I think another problem with this country right now is that many journalists are using their columns and other forums they have to take cheap shots at other people (I am talking about Jerry Remy, Dane Cook, and to a lesser extent John Hollinger...I am also talking about emailing Deadspin or the Big Lead anytime ESPN hurts your little feelings or even starting your own blog with passive-aggressive statements and pictures that describe how you are "feeling.") rather than just suck it up and push out a decent column.

By the way, I wonder if sticking up for "free speech" includes allowing comments on your articles/columns? I guess not...

Simmonsologists know that Bill is a chicken shit and uses his columns to make a point but allows no feedback from others. He can do this because he is a journalist who works for ESPN.

Our country's single dumbest rule is the speed limit on highways. Modern cars drive much faster and more efficiently than cars built in 1955 or even 1975. For instance, I was flicking channels two nights ago and stumbled across a scene in "Love Story" when Ryan O'Neal and his girlfriend were driving through Boston -- it's mesmerizing because you see what Boston looked like 40 years ago, pre-Big Dig and pre-everything -- and O'Neal's convertible was shaking and shimmying even though they weren't going faster than 45. Now that's why we had a speed limit! Nowadays, many cars can hum along at 90 when you think you're going 60. So I agree with Carolla -- we should move the highway speed limit to 65, and all tickets should be dispersed based on a car-by-car basis. If you're clocked doing 80 in a BMW M3, guess what … that's like doing 30 in a 1984 Ford Escort. Why don't we change the rules? Because we're dumb and lazy.

Oh yeah, Bill is not an elitist asshole at all, he just wants different speed limits for different cars. I hate to ruin he and Carolla's great thought here but the real reason the speed limits are what they are is for safety reasons, it has nothing to do with how fast the cars can go. Maybe this is one of those things Bill doesn't know and will not apologize for not knowing, but a shitty car going 90 and a nice car going 90 actually hit another car at the same speed. Crazy how physics work isn't it? Basically just because you probably have a some huge ass SUV and feel like you should be able to do whatever the hell you want because you drive a tank and can't get hurt, there is someone who would be killed by a car going 90 no matter how modern/nice that car is.

We don't change the rules because it is dangerous to increase the speed limit.

The overtime solution is so simple that I'll confine it to three sentences. If the team that wins the toss marches down the field and scores a touchdown, it wins the game.

Great idea! So nothing changes, that was simple.

If the first team kicks a successful field goal, the other team gets one possession as well … and if it scores a field goal, we move into "sudden death" from that point on.

You are losing points here. Why does the team have to get a touchdown or else the other team gets the ball? I hope realizes this would not fix the Colts game from last week that everyone is bitching about. Yet again, these brilliant ideas always end with it going to the exact same fucking system we have now, the sudden death overtime. I am still confused as to why a field goal can't win a game and a touchdown can. Why differentiate between the two?

In that same situation, if an opening field goal is followed by a touchdown from the team that lost the toss, the second team wins.

That part makes sense. This is simple, yet not effective. Brilliant.

anyone who says breathlessly, "Ed Reed is a football player!" like he's the first person who thought of this

Please, please, please say this is a shot at Peter King. I really doubt it, but he did have a whole feature this week about maybe?

I have two issues with the Ravens and only two: They looked a little too good this past week in a nice matchup against Miami (dropping this line to 3, and yes, this violates Rule No. 2D of the Playoff Manifesto);

Don't you hate it when a team just looks too good in the playoffs? I prefer a team to struggle the entire game and never really dominate an opponent, that is much more preferable. Also, please stop with the Playoff Manifesto. You are stupid.

The Pick: Panthers 37, Cardinals 14.

Oh God.

And really, is Pittsburgh's offense any different from Indy's offense? The Steelers struggle running the ball and don't have a ton of long drives. Same thing, right?

Oh no, they are exactly the same. When I think of Peyton Manning, I think of Ben Roethlisberger. When I think of Steelers football, I think of running the ball effectively and trying to control the clock. When I think of Colts offensive football I think of running the ball and managing the clock, wait that's wrong, I don't think of that at all.

"Ben" makes me nervous in this one. And nervous in general. Should teams really be throwing guys out there after a third concussion? I suffered a bad one when I was 16; even two-plus decades later, I can bump my head and feel weird for the rest of the day. You're just never the same. Nobody can tell me differently. I don't trust "Ben" in this game. At all.

I think one other factor Bill needs to think about is that he very well could be a pussy and "Ben" is not.

This column is very interesting, so the Patriots don't make the playoffs and Bill Simmons all of a sudden puts up a fairly readable and decent column. Just another reason to cheer against the Pats.


Unknown said...

I suffered a severe concussion at 16 also. After a month of being careful, and not playing soccer (it happened in the middle of the season) I returned to a normal life. Haven't had a problem in two decades. Of course, I believe in Tebow.....

He picked the Panthers over the Cards eh? You're screwed.

Bengoodfella said...

I had a concussion when I was 11 and I got over that as well and have had no problems.

Yeah, I am going to the game and I am not feeling very confident about the game for some reason.

Unknown said...

Also, in his article he mentions the Saturday Night Games. He says "the Snow Game (What Pats Fans Call it) or the Tuck Rule Game (What Raider Fans call it)."

No Bill. EVERYBODY who isn't a Pats fan calls it the Tuck Rule Game. That game is only remembered for one reason, the Pats were given it by the refs by calling the Tuck Rule on what was a fumble.
Damn he sucks. What a self involved jackass.

Bengoodfella said...

The "Snow Game" is not very specific. When I think of a snow game I think of the Thanksgiving Day game between the Miami Dolphins and the Dallas Cowboys when Leon Lett touched a blocked kick and the Dolphins recovered or I think of many other games where it snowed. "Tuck Rule" game is much more specific.

He is a self involved jackass and I really doubt Patriots fans call it the "Snow Game."

Anonymous said...

BGF...Seems like everyone likes your Panthers a bit too much, doesn't it? People are split between my Giants and the Eagles so I am prob a little less concerned thanyou are right now. Bill sucks and I am convinced he's trying to get fired what with his constant references to drinking, drugs and gambling. Pushing boundaries, if you will. He should've written how silly those McD commercials are, period. Who serves McD at a party or a wedding? I happen to enjoy McD once in a blue moon. It's a secret and I'd be mortified if anyone saw the bag in my car. Don't tell anyone or I'll have to drop "Awesome" from my name. Good luck today. With any luck our teams will be facing off next Sun in Jersey.

Bengoodfella said...

I think everyone likes McDonald's every once in a while, nothing wrong with that. I do have a horrible feeling something will go wrong with today's game for several reasons. First, I have to work all day so I am going to be driving pretty rushed to get to the game on time, I have the worst head cold I have had in three years, it is supposed to rain tonight, I have a gut feeling the Panthers are going to lose and everyone is picking the Panthers to win. It all just spells doom and the fact that something is going to go wrong is pretty much guaranteed in my mind.

I don't want to play the Giants! I want to play the Eagles at home. I am scared of the Giants. Of course, if the Eagles beat the Giants they will have so much momentum they will probably beat the Panthers at home and then neither of us are happy.

I don't get why anyone would serve McDonald's at a party though. Pretty dumb.

Anonymous said...

Sorry about your Panthers homeboy. Jake D laid an egg but D and coaching forgot to show up too. Might be time to draft a QB.

Anonymous said...

Cars run more efficiently nowadays than they did before. Yeah... and cars also run more efficiently at 55 (or 60, depending on the vehicle.... check that driver's manual!) than at 85 and 90.

Honestly, is it so hard to drive around the speed limit? Where does Bill go that requires him to drive 90 to get there? Vegas? I guess, but you honestly have to be some sort of moron (or not white) to get a ticket driving in the California desert on the way to Las Vegas. Oh wait.

Bengoodfella said...

Aaron, I am with you on the excessive speeding issue. There is really no reason to go super fast and why would you need to? That comment makes absolutely no sense to me, I don't understand where the logic in that is.

Anonymous said...

Giants and panthers are both excellent, feared teams. If Eagles win SB while Phillies are WS champs I am dragging my family underground cuz I cannot be around for that.

Bengoodfella said...

Oh yeah, I guess the Panthers are feared but right now it is madness. So far Jake Delhomme may be cut before March 1, Julius Peppers is either (a) demanding a sign and trade, (b) franchise tagged (c) not resigning with the Panthers. Also, the defensive coordinator may be fired and Ken Lucas will be cut immediately and John Fox may be replaced by Bill Cowher.

Good times! This is what happens when a fumble and interception set up Arizona for good field position which leads to two easy scores, everyone gets fired.

Unknown said...

At sometime this week they are planning to cover Larry Fitzgerald though right? It was like watching Steve Smith a couple years ago drag Carolina through the playoffs. Of course this year, Tavaris Delhomme was QBing the Panthers.

Chris W said...

Bill's picks, by and large, were as shitty as he is as a writer

Anonymous said...

Agreed - the moron went 0 - 4 in his picks. 2 - 6 for the playoffs overall. I think it is time to drop the idiotic Playoff Manifesto - what a crock of sh!t.

Bengoodfella said...

I really, really hope no one is basing their actual gambling picks on what Bill Simmons writes. I am with Rob and Chris, he should just drop the playoff manifesto completely. It is sad to see. I think we are going to see an Eagles and Steelers Super Bowl.

Martin, the Panthers are not planning on shadowing Larry Fitzgerald or even covering him at any point this year. They have never done it before and they are not going to start now.

I have come to the conclusion a bye week is a bad thing.