Wednesday, March 14, 2012

13 comments Rick Reilly Is Just Taunting Us with His Lack of Original Ideas Now

Rick Reilly has run out of ideas. He actually ran out of ideas a few years ago and began copying his old work and re-writing his old work as original ideas. Unfortunately, while Reilly has run out of ideas ESPN has not run out of money, so they still pay Reilly to write for the site. So Reilly still writes for and spends most of his writing time making lists and using current sports events to populate his list. Today, Rick breaks down where Peyton Manning should sign and does it only in the way he knows how. In a way that is annoyingly poor.

You need advice, Peyton Manning. We need a column. It works out.

I would like to think "I need a column, what's the easiest route to go?" doesn't go through Rick Reilly's head on a weekly basis, but I know better. This train of thought probably goes through his head every week.

Because Reilly is a Broncos "fan" then this whole column is a way of trying to convince Manning to come to Denver. I put "fan" in parenthesis because Rick Reilly secretly hates sports and has no interest in covering them at all. There is very little every sports-oriented about his columns and sports is the backdrop to his writing and not the reason for his writing. Pretending to enjoy sports his how he pays the bills.

You seem to have whittled your Stick Your Neck Out Tour down to four teams: Denver, Arizona, Tennessee and Miami.

Actually it is at two teams right now supposedly. Tennessee and Denver. Also, I hate the name for this tour.

These teams all want you the way Chelsea wants vodka, yet none of them is even sure you can play anymore. Who cares? You are The Bachelor, and they are four blondes in five-inch heels with daddy issues. Let's do this.

Bill Simmons would like his writing style back, please. Please stop stealing from people, including yourself.

As I have said before, if I am Bill Simmons I am pissed at how much Rick Reilly makes for the crap he puts out. Reilly's current writing output makes Simmons look original and creative. Of course, Simmons has now and can write "fuck" in a column and make all the pornstar references he has ever wanted to make, so I would assume he's pretty happy with his spot in the universe right now. Maybe I don't feel so bad for Simmons.


Denver plays in a division that could be taken by a team of girl scouts armed with Pez dispensers.

This is unreadable stuff. Yet somewhere, there is a person chuckling at this reference and marveling at how creative Rick Reilly is.

The Broncos won it last year with a guy who tossed more dirtballs than a Hooters bouncer.

Rick Reilly has reproduced his previous work more than a Xerox machine. Rick Reilly tosses out bad analogies like Anthony Davis tosses out weak layups.

Seriously, anyone can write like this, but few can do it with this amount of douchebaggery. It's actually quite impressive once you come to terms with Rick Reilly stealing money from ESPN without using a gun. If Robin Hood stole from the rich to give to the poor, then Rick Reilly is stealing from the rich and keeping it all for himself.

Arizona -- even with you and your brother -- is not going to beat the 49ers.

There can only be one quarterback behind center for each play and the last time I checked neither Eli or Peyton Manning were a running or catching threat, so this comment doesn't really make sense. Usually a comment like this is reserved for when the people being named can actually play a sport at the same time on the same team. It's more proof that Rick Reilly just doesn't give a shit.

Miami, going up against Tom Brady twice a year? You'd get to Saturn before you'd get to the playoffs there.

Because in the NFL you have to win your division in order to make the playoffs, right? There isn't two Wild Card spots in both leagues or anything like that. So if Peyton went to Miami, there is absolutely no way his team could win the division and therefore have a chance to make the playoffs.

Sometimes I wonder if Rick Reilly really understands sports or follows them at all. I think there is a 15% chance he doesn't know the NFL has two Wild Card spots for teams that didn't win their division. I know for a fact he didn't edit this column nor did anyone for or they would have caught that Peyton could still be in the same division as Tom Brady and still make the playoffs.

Wide receivers

In Arizona, you could throw to Larry Fitzgerald Jr., which is like a chef cooking for Vince Wilfork. But he is only one man, and the Cardinals don't have much beyond him.

Early Doucet and Andre Roberts both had 50+ catches last year with 689 yards receiving for Doucet and 586 yards receiving for Roberts. Obviously they aren't elite receivers, but they also aren't below average, especially with the lack of consistent quarterback play the Cardinals had last year.

Doucet will be 27 years old when the 2012 season starts and Roberts will be 24 years old. Their age will be important in a minute.

In Miami, you could throw to Brandon Marshall, if you can throw all the way to Chicago. He just got traded.

Awkward sentence structure here based on Marshall being traded and this column having to be edited at the last minute. You would think Reilly would edit the column to sound less awkward, but he had a tee time to catch and really doesn't give a shit if his writing is of average quality or not.

Denver has Demaryius Thomas, who is only 24 and already a ball-gobbling glutton. Plus, the Broncos have a possible star in Eric Decker.

So let's review the moronic point of view of Rick Reilly about these two Cardinals and Broncos receivers...

Andre Roberts (24 years old): 51 catches 586 yards.
Early Doucet (27 years old): 54 catches 689 yards.

They aren't much behind Larry Fitzgerald in the opinion of Rick Reilly.

Demaryius Thomas (24 years old): 32 catches 551 yards.
Eric Decker (25 years old): 44 catches 612 yards.

Thomas is a ball-gobbling glutton and Decker is a possible star. Yet, neither of them caught as many passes for as many yards as the #2 and #3 receivers for the Cardinals who Reilly appears to have little respect for. Granted, Tim Tebow was throwing Decker and Thomas the ball. Well, John Skelton and Kevin Kolb were throwing Doucet and Roberts the ball and neither of them are even the #1 passing option for the quarterback (that's Larry Fitzgerald). We have to acknowledge Doucet and Roberts would be better receivers with Manning throwing them the ball over Skelton and Kolb.

So basically I am saying Rick Reilly is absolutely wrong and the superlatives he throws on Decker and Thomas are perfectly fine, but he can't simply dismiss Doucet and Roberts. Those two receivers had better statistics than the ball-gobbling glutton and possible star Rick sees on the Broncos roster at the wide receiver position. Of course I don't want facts to get in the way of Rick's argument.

Tennessee has receivers even people in Nashville don't recognize. In uniform.

You mean Kenny Britt and Nate Washington? Maybe Rick Reilly doesn't recognize them while they are in their uniform, but Tennessee Titans fans do recognize them. If any receiver mentioned in this column is a future star it is Kenny Britt. So again, Rick Reilly needs to stick to writing puff pieces and making bad puns/analogies. When he talks sports, it becomes incredibly obvious he is over his head.


Do you realize the average Denver high in December is 46? That's seven degrees higher than in Indianapolis. Denver also gets about 250 clear, sunny days a year. There's a reason there's no dome in Denver. The Broncos don't need one.

Right, because it is never cold outside in Denver during the months of November, December, or January.

Cap room

It's not as though you're Tom Brady. You can't throw and catch the passes yourself. You're going to need some help...The Broncos could pay you and sign ungodly talented Chargers WR Vincent Jackson.

The Titans have a lot, too: $28M, but you'd have to stop after Vincent.

The Titans would want to stop after Vincent Jackson because the receiving corps for Tennessee would be Britt, Washington, Damian Williams, and Vincent Jackson. That's pretty good, especially counting Jared Cook and Lavelle Hawkins into that equation. But again, Rick Reilly doesn't know Tennessee doesn't have a terrible receiving corps because he knows very little about the topic he is discussing. He just wants to spit out a column and go on to more important parts of his day.


Here's the 2010 murder rate per 100,000 people. Hey, you have to consider these things. Denver 3.6; Phoenix 7.6; Nashville 8.9, Miami 15.4.

So murder is the only type of crime committed in each of these cities? I'm not going to argue crime statistics, but under the heading "Crime" you can't simply state the murder rate of each city and call it a day as if murder is the only type of crime committed in these cities. Label it "Murder rate" if you are only going to include the murder rate.

Coaches/Front office

You're practically a coach already, but you can't make all the decisions. Miami's rookie head coach Joe Philbin has been in the NFL for just nine years. You have wristbands older than that.

Philbin has been a coach at some level since 1984 and ignoring his time in college football just seems really short-sighted. What else would I expect from Rick Reilly though?

What better guy to watch every day than John Elway? And don't forget, Elway won his two Super Bowls at 37 and 38. You're 35. He'll know what you need.

Probably the same thing John Elway needed, a Hall of Fame tight end, a great running game, a good defense and a great group of receivers. I'm not sure Denver currently has all of this.


You have twins, a boy and a girl. You need to think about where you want to raise them. Do you want them to grow up to be singers (Tennessee), skiers (Denver), golfers (Arizona) or assisted-living nurses (Miami)?

I get it! Everyone in Nashville likes to sing country music and everyone in Miami is really old! Hilarity ensues!

I can't decide if this comment is supposed to be funny or not. It just seems stupid. Also, Rick somewhat contradicts himself by saying children who grow up in Arizona become golfers. One of Rick's categories for Peyton was "Golfing" and he said the following in that section:

I believe you're a very tough 5 handicap. And you're obsessed. So I'm sure you think the Phoenix area has the best golf of the four cities. Maybe. But the Denver area actually has more courses in Golf Digest's top 100 rankings than any of the other three towns -- Castle Pines (29th) and Cherry Hills (67). (Not going to be hard to get you on, either -- Fox and Elway belong.) Scottsdale has Estancia (62nd), but that's it.

Denver may have better ranked courses as rated by Golf Digest, but if Rick thinks children from Arizona grow up to the be golfers, then possibly wouldn't Arizona be a better place for Peyton Manning to go to play golf? Rick is the one making up stereotypes about people from Arizona being golfers, I'm just trying to follow along.

Arizona ranks first in the nation in number of ant species. (Your two 1-year-old girls aren't going to like that.)

Because all women hate bugs. Women only like cleaning, cooking, getting pregnant, fetching alcohol for their man and getting their nails done.

Nashville ranks first in the nation in Internet shopping. (Uh-oh. No real shopping. Your wife isn't going to like that.)

Women hate shopping over the Internet. It's probably because their brains are smaller than a man's brain and they can't figure out how to turn the computer on.

And Denver ranks first in beer production per capita.

And we all know one-year old children absolutely love beer.

So, let's see where you should go, according to our entirely objective and arbitrary system:

Denver +40
Arizona +15
Tennessee 0
Miami -10

(We'll keep a cold one waiting for you.)

You may believe Rick Reilly didn't do any research for this article. That's not true. He had to research which division and conference each of these teams played in. Rick probably also had to research who "Peyton Manning" is.


j-dub said...

quote from Moneyball (modified):

"There are good writers and there are poor writers. Then there's fifty feet of crap. And then there's Rick Reilly"

Bill Simmons would be so proud of me

Bengoodfella said...

J-dub, Bill Simmons would be super proud of you. I like that quote. I think it is insulting to crap to mention it in the same sentence as Rick Reilly.

rich said...

Arizona -- even with you and your brother -- is not going to beat the 49ers.

Seriously? The 49ers will play a first place schedule this year (Saints, Giants, Packers), while the Cards get a 2nd place schedule (Eagles, Lions, Falcons). Gee... The last three SB champs or a bunch of teams that are pretty beatable?

The Niners also still have a relatively unproven QB and even with Randy Moss, have no true number 1 receiver.

They're a good team defensively, but I think a team playing a second place schedule with Peyton Manning throwing to Larry Fitzgerald can do some damage.

Oh and who the hell said they had to win the division?

I'm pretty sure a team that finished 8-8 with a crap factory at QB would be okay with Peyton.

If your only goal is to make the playoffs, then yes, Denver is the best bet because of a weak division.

If you're trying to win a championship, you'd have better success in Tennessee or Arizona. Harder to make the playoffs? Sure, but you're also on a better team.

It's funny how SF went from crap to unbeatable in one year. They have a fantastic defense, don't get me wrong, but in 2010 here are some teams that did really well:

NY Jets 11-5
Chicago Bears 11-5
Atlanta Falcons 13-3

(SF was 6-10 and only lost the division by 1 game).

Here are those team's records last year:

8-8, 8-8, 10-6.

So lets say the niners come back to earth a bit and go 11-5.

Could you really say that a Peyton led Cardinals team couldn't go 11-5?

Tennessee has receivers even people in Nashville don't recognize.

The stupidity of this statement isn't so much in that this is wrong, it's that out of the three teams listed, only Tennessee has a RB good enough to really help a QB.

Moreno/McGahee in Denver, Wells in Arizona and Bush in Miami? I'd rather have the guy who hit 1000 yards in a "down year" and also added 57 receptions.

But the Denver area actually has more courses in Golf Digest's top 100 rankings

The guy has only made roughly a "shitton" of money in his career. I think if there's someone who can afford a week's vacation to go golf, it's Peyton.

And Denver ranks first in beer production per capita.

If only there was something that allowed people to purchase things from companies that aren't in their area and if only there was some way to transport goods around the country...

In all seriousness though, I hope Peyton goes to Denver so I'm not forced to see Tebow on tv every week.

cs said...

I read his column yesterday and had the exact same thoughts as you: he's fallen so far that he has to hijack Simmons' style, and yet he somehow fails. Badly. He just comes off as dated, irrelevant and somehow picks the worst jokes to run.

And his cheese sandwich twitter challenge? Jesus christ...

Mozzer's Mazda Mishap said...

I fail to see Rick's point when he mentions crime/murder.

Peyton: "In the end, I chose Denver because I felt it was the best place for me, at this point in my career, to not be murdered."

Justin Zeth said...

You really hit the nail on the head about Reilly. Actually if you go waaaaaay back and read some of his very old stuff you'll notice that either he used to be a skilled writer or he used to have a good editor. But now he doesn't give a crap and he's famous enough to demand Protection From Editors (which there is almost certainly a "proofreading is fine, no substantive changes may be made to my writing without my consent" in his contract, as in Simmons' and most famous writers), and it shows.

He just doesn't care. His dedication to his craft is so nonexistent it makes Simmons look like Kurt Vonnegut.

Bengoodfella said...

Rich, that's a good point. I like Arizona for Peyton Manning to be honest. I've really liked Doucet since he was at LSU and if they can fix the OL a little bit more I think they have a good chance to win the NFC West. They get Ryan Williams back this year and I think with a competent QB Roberts and Doucet can be Garcon/Collie for Peyton.

I think a Peyton-led team can go 11-5. That's the one thing about the NFL. There are dynasties, but success one season doesn't necessarily lend itself to success the next season. It's a fickle league.

I think the Titans have pretty good WR as well. Britt has potential to be a stud, Washington had 1000 yards receiving last year, they have a good OL, and there is Chris Johnson in the backfield. I don't think Reilly pays enough attention.

If Peyton took Tebow's job, the world would implode. They would interrupt the NCAA Tourney for wall-to-wall coverage of this move. Maybe not that bad, but ESPN would explode.

CS, I would say it is sad to see him fall, but it really isn't. He's kind of douchey. He does hijack Simmons' style and it does feel dated.

He has a cheese sandwich challenge on Twitter? Really?

Mozzer, I think that was an attempt at humor. An attempt, but a failure to execute. Possibly putting the murder rate into the pro/con columns would be funny if executed properly. Otherwise, your joke was much better than his was. I laughed at yours, I thought his was dumb and did the opposite of laughing...whatever that may be.

Not to get into crime statistics, but is Peyton really going to be hanging around the part of town where the majority of murders occur? I'm pretty sure he can avoid a state of the art alarm system for wherever he lives too.

Justin, I wonder about that sometimes with writers. It is a cliche to say a writer used to good and isn't anymore. I wonder if it isn't true though. As a writer gets older, more experienced, and has more autonomy could the writing get worse b/c he/she no longer has an editor looking over what they write. It's sort of like bands that end up producing their own music. Without that person there saying, "this sucks," you could end up with crap. So with success, comes autonomy, which isn't necessarily a good thing for the quality of the writing.

When I write about Reilly, I sometimes feel bad saying Simmons doesn't care b/c Reilly truly, really doesn't give a crap.

Justin Zeth said...

Ben: I am myself an editor and occasional writer; your suspicion is correct. Mostly.

Most people, whatever it is they're good at and do for a living, peak fairly early in life and decline later in life. Writers peak (usually in their mid-30s, rather than mid-late 20s like athletes) fairly early and decline from there.

But it's also very true that in most cases where you think a famous writer who has been famous for a while isn't writing as well as s/he used to--you're usually right, and a BIG reason why is they have acquired Protection From Editors. Good editing is a big part of what made the writer rich and famous, but of course once a person gets rich and famous he strongly tends to believe it's because he's so awesome.

Bengoodfella said...

Justin, that's true. I had never thought a/b when writers peak mostly because I didn't even think a writer could peak so early. That does make sense though. I mostly have thought about athletes peaking and haven't really put too much thought into his happening too much in other sports.

I figured after a while a writer may get some protection from editors. I am sure it is good in some ways because their voice isn't edited as much, but it is also a bad thing because they aren't edited as much.

cs said...

Oh he certainly has a cheese sandwich challenge... they run it on ESPN, it's... bad.

Bengoodfella said...

Cs, it sounds incredibly bad. I will have to look that up to see exactly what it is...if I dare.

Anonymous said...

Honest to God, Reilly was the best sportswriter in the business something like 20 years ago. He was funny, he could draw you in, he'd do these great features for SI. I don't read him now if I can help it, but once in a while I do run across something he wrote, and it's been at least 10 years since I've read anything with his byline on it that wasn't completely mailed in. Just a disgrace.

For the life of me, I don't understand how anyone can read that crap. I guess it still connects with older people or something (and I'm over 40 myself). Give him another decade and he'll be Andy Effing Rooney -- he's clearly already traveling down that road.

Bengoodfella said...

Anon, I am not even sure Rick Reilly connects with older readers either. Maybe he does. He isn't really snarky and is kind of cheesy with his remarks, so maybe he does appeal to an older demographic. That's about the only reasoning I could think of as to why he is so popular. It's been rumored ESPN isn't renewing his contract after this year, so even they have caught on at this point.

The problem with Reilly is he mails in columns now and he really doesn't have a skill set to do anything else either. When you read his columns, you can almost know he is mailing it in.