Colts, Jets, Patriots, & more: “Tuesday Morning Hangover; Monday Edition”

 

Above: Curtis "Totally Not Peyton Manning" Painter

 

Hiya – now do tell!  

Who else is lining up with us to get our “Curtis Painter” jerseys?  

[[Note: take the following elements – Peyton Manning (the renaissance master of the gridiron) and Curtis Painter (woeful and inept would-be understudy and artist-in-training) and you’ve got one hell of a smug joke.]]

Come to think of it, nothing would make The Venuist happier than if NFL head coaches had to wear jersey numbers like baseball skippers.  Wouldn’t that be great?  Would that were so, screw Painter and order me a cobalt blue Jim Caldwell jersey.  #14-2, please!

But seriously, let’s be civil.  

Welcome to Venuist’s newest column: “Tuesday Morning Hangover.”  The column itself is a nod to the great Gregg “Easterblog” Easterbrook, who’s fantastic “Tuesday Morning Quarterback” is about the best column on a major sports site concerning football since Dr. Z (the former great at SI) was forced into retirement by his failing health.  TMQ is the best of its kind because, (a) it’s witty and (b), it dares to recap the previous weekend’s NFL action through the prism of gameday X and Os.  Easterbrook doesn’t give Tom Brady a pass – pun intended – when he overthrows a receiver on a critical down, and, likewise, he doesn’t join in the chorus of boos when a nutjob like Belichick goes for it on “fourth-and-two,” in cases where in fact, the percentages suggest crazy old Bill was right in his call.  

On the other hand, the other obvious forerunner to this column is “Monday Morning Quarterback” over at SI.com.  Which, if you have ever surfed the internets for sports content, watched Sunday Night Football, or waited patiently in the greater New England area while a tall, overweight man with salt-and-pepper hair haggled endlessly with a coffee barista over the contents of his mocha-latte thingy, is written by the ironically named “Peter King.”  King is as close to demagogue status as exists in NFL journalism.  So much so that his MMQ column has been given an annex, published each Tuesday, known as “Monday Morning Quarterback: Tuesday Edition.”  Here at Venuist we think that this is one of the stupidest names for a column that we have ever heard.  And so, as an homage, we give you:

“Tuesday Morning Hangover; Monday Edition”

Ha!

On to more football.

Jets win!  Yay!  Jets win.  In case you live outside of New York City and beyond the reach of its avaricious sports media complex, you may have been unaware of the fact that the New York Jets will  be returning to the NFL postseason tournament in a week’s time.  Hoooray!  The Jets, to their credit, did what was necessary, handily beating two opponents, the Colts (see: scared Ponies) and the Bengals (see: kitty cats) who rolled over rather than playing at full strength in games which could not affect their own teams’ postseason ranking.  Yay!  Therefore, the Jets roll into the NFL’s “second season” (as it’s called by many dolts who fail to mention that the so-called “second” NFL season is comprised of 4 games, at most, and a mere 3, if one’s squad is fortunate) hot on the rails of two victories which look substantial until the box scores and gameday line-ups are examined.  Yeegods.  But, hey: Yay!  The Jets made it!  Go Jets.  

What will become of the Jets is unknown.  However, The Venuist would not be surprised to see the final result of this week’s game vs Cincinnati — 37-7, a victory — reversed into 0-37, a Jets loss.  Nor would T*V assume that a gutsy Jets defense and running game might not upset the kitty cats at home, especially considering key Cinci losses to teams  such as Oakland, near-losses to teams such as Kansas City, and those insidiously hideous home uni’s to which the Bengals insist on subjecting their paying ticketholders.

You know when a player says "its an honor just to wear this uniform"? Ten bucks says you CANNOT find anyone ever saying that about these Bengals duds.

 

Tuesday Morning Hangover’s take: Go Jets.  In the “regular season” the Jets represent a foe that The Venuist is loathe to cheer on, T*V being an New Englander by origin.  But in the postseason all bets are off.  Our hatred of the dreaded Cinci jerseys overtakes all regional parochialism.

Who do we like to win the “second season” in the AFC?  Dunno – but it likely won’t be any of the three time-tested titans of the past decade.  Look, the Steelers pissed their way out of the playoffs entirely.  The Colts may as well have when they punked out of 16-0 and let Painter (see:  “artist in residence” in the loosest sense) tank the hearts of their first team and fanbase (goodbye “homefield advantage”).  The team of the decade, or so I am told, New England Patriots, for their part, played balls-out all year to miss on “fourth-and-two” and lose their best player, untouched, on a fluke cut in the secondary – the kind of which Wes Welker makes so routinely we can only assume the football gods are as yet still aligned against the NFL’s representative from Foxboro, MA.  That said, the luckiest matter for the rest of the AFC is that the Patriots are unlikely to host more than one playoff game, where as all odds indicate, they are unbeatable.

As for the other pretenders, as intimated above, Venuist likes not the Ravens chances in Foxboro, with or without #83 and thinks the Bengals or Jets will run into a Shaun Phillips-sized wall whether or not they dispatch the one or another in a dogfight or a rout.  So be it.

This leaves the San Diego, gulp, (super)Chargers to stand as Big Boys among the kids table and likely, play a far superior representative of professional football from the league’s rival conference.  

The way the NFC playoffs have shaped up appears on paper to be much more interesting.  Like Jelly-man Kelly, The Venuist likes the Cowboys and Packers the most, but thinks that Minnesota will benefit from the bye in spades – so long as Brett “The ‘Slinger” Favre can keep his mouth shut for a week and a half and let the media storms which surround his team abate.  

The Saints and Eagles figure to regroup after an embarrassing last month and last week, respectively.  But sadly, can we really see either team winning more than one contest with that noticeable limp that each squad is featuring?  

As for Arizona, dude, your guess is as good as mine.  Week to week, for two straight years, the Cardinals have been able to look as substantially different as the old big and small “Marios”  from the 8-bit NES years.  When you think they’ll come out throwing fire, they shrink under attack.  When you think they’re without a shot against the dynastic powers of the contemporary NFL, they consistently overachieve, or come damn-close. 

In closing, Tuesday Morning Hangover offers what we see as the ten most likely following 2010 Super Bowl match ups:

  1. Chargers – Cowboys
  2. Chargers – Packers
  3. Chargers – Brett Favre
  4. Colts – Cowboys
  5. Colts – Packers
  6. Colts – Brett Favre
  7. Chargers – Cardinals
  8. Colts – Cardinals
  9. Patriots – Cowboys
  10. Patriots – Packers/Brett Favre
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