Merry Christmas, everyone! And welcome to a very special, extra longass Christmas Day edition of the NFL Dick Joke Jamboroo. I hope you're currently reading this wearing both pajamas AND a bathrobe, having opened all your presents and eaten your weight in scrambled eggs. I'm at the age now where I look forward to Christmas breakfast about 70 times more than any gift. Did I have smoked salmon this morning? Fuck and yes, I did.
This is also a time of year for gift-giving amongst all the players and coaches of the NFL. Few people know this, but the NFL holds a massive Secret Santa drawing every year. Just like the people at Grayson Moorhead Securities! Normally, the results of this drawing are tucked away in the folds of Romeo Crennel's sideboobs. Alas, we at KSK were able to get hold of them. And here now, from the entire KSK writing staff, comes the contents of that list.
From: Terrell Owens
To: Jason Witten
Gift: Carmelo Anthony's Stop Snitching Video
From: Rob Parker
To: Chris Barry-Marinelli
Gift: One night alone in a Motel 6 with Jim Schwartz
From: Kurt Warner
To: Matt Leinart
Gift: The Message Remix 2.0: The Bible In Contemporary Language
From: Tom Coughlin
To: Plaxico Burress
Gift: Kevlar long johns
From: Chad Ocho Cinco
To: Marvin Lewis
Gift: Toilet paper roll filled with strawberry jam
From: New York Jets
To: Brett Favre
Gift: A cheap gold watch
From: Vernon Davis
To: Mike Singletary
From: Bill Belichick
Gift: Pink slip saying "You're cut"
From: Denver Broncos
To: San Diego Chargers
Gift: The AFC West
From: Black people
To: Matt Ryan
Gift: Very begrudging respect
To: Brett Favre
From: Peter King
To: Brady Quinn
From: Shaun Smith
Gift: A fist
From: Nick Denton
To: Your eyes
To: Bill Simmons
Gift: New Killers CD
From: Ryan Clark
To: Wes Welker
Gift: Sweet dreams
From: Ricky Williams
To: Santonio Holmes
Gift: A vaporizer
From: Santonio Holmes
To: Ricky Williams
Gift: A note that reads, "Where do I put my cock?"
From: Ralph Wilson
To: Dick Jauron
Gift: A contract extension. No, seriously.
From: Michael Irvin
To: Everett McIver
Gift: Pair of scissors (annual tradition)
From: Charles Haley
To: Former 49er teammates
Gift: Picture of own erection
From: Andrea Kremer
To: Visanthe Shiancoe
Gift: Home phone number
I'm sure our commenters will think of more during the course of the day. Now, let's open up the rest of this fucker.
All games in the Jamboroo are evaluated for sheer watchability on a scale of 1 to 5 Throwgasms.
Cowboys at Eagles: The announcing crew for last Saturday's NFL Network game between the Cowboys and Ravens consisted of Bob Papa, Marshall Faulk, and Deion Sanders. And let me tell you something. If you think Deion was annoying as a player, that has nothing on Deion as a color commentator. Ever leave a bar because there was some loud asshole fan there you just had to get away from, lest you end up gutting him like a fresh-caught brook trout? I fucking hate you, NFL Network.
Broncos at Chargers: Neither of these flaming shitheaps deserve to make the playoffs, but that doesn't mean they didn't stage a fucking awesome game they last time they met. And it doesn't mean that one of them – the Chargers – couldn't end up winning a playoff game or two once they get in. And they could do it all at the expense of leaving out an 11-5 Patriot team. I think the playoff system should be rejiggered so that this happens every year. I get a Thunderstik in my pants just thinking about it.
Lions at Packers: This Packer team has fucked up in so many different ways down the stretch that I'm not terribly confident they can finish the job on Detroit's agony. That's why I find this game about 50 times more suspenseful than any other game this week. Who cares if the Cowboys make the playoffs? They'll just fuck it up anyway. This is HISTORY, people. Horrible, awful history.
Dolphins at Jets
Giants at Vikings: We're just a few days away now from the Vikings' annual collapse. And who do we have to thank for it this year? Why, that would be receiver Bobby Wade, who had to go open his big fat stupid mouth before the Bears played the Packers about how the Bears would "blow it." The Bears, of course, then turned in a victory that could be described as miraculous, a clear message from God that BOBBY WADE IS FUCKING WASTE OF LIFE SHITEATER. DIE, BOBBY WADE. DIE. I HOPE YOU DROWN IN A PUDDLE OF YOUR OWN BLOOD, YOU FUCK.
The Vikings will lose this game and the Bears will beat Houston on Sunday. It's preordained. I've never been more certain of anything in my life. Not only should you bet on the Giants this week, you should cash in the deed to your house and the title to your car in order to bet as much money on them as possible.
(Side note: Brian Billick did the color work for last week's Vikings game, and I'll be damned if that asshole isn't the Tim McCarver of NFL announcers. "Now, in this situation here… if you're the coach, you're gonna want to try and pass the ball. Or, if you think the pass isn't going to work, you're gonna want to try and run the ball.")
Jaguars at Ravens
Patriots at Bills
Bears at Texans
Raiders at Bucs
Rams at Falcons: Last week in the game against Minnesota, Mike Smith declined to challenge a Visanthe Shiancoe TD catch where Shiancoe's elbow was down with the ball a good yard short of the end zone. (Shiancoe's cock was protruding out the back of the end zone at the time, but that's not pertinent here). Smith's logic was it didn't make sense to challenge the call when the Vikings would have 1st and 10 at the one anyway. Refusing to challenge was a tacit admission the Vikings would likely score from that close in.
This fascinated me. Usually, coaches will challenge any goddamn questionable call without thinking about its greater context. I've seen coaches who challenge an 8-yard gain by an opponent when it's first and 10 at the beginning of the game at the opponent's 20-yard line. This is stupid, because even if you were clearly wronged by the ref's call, it isn't always worth using a challenge over eight piddly shit yards or whatever.
The question is: when IS IT the right situation to use that precious challenge? I think the way coaches use the red flag and how they develop strategies for challenging calls is still in its relative infancy (watch Ken Whisenhunt challenge a call if you want proof). What is a challenge actually worth to a coach, and when is saving a challenge more important than arguing a clearly reversible call?
Since I'm too fat and lazy to figure this out on my own, I asked someone who actually knows shit about statistical analysis, Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders, about Mike Smith's decision not to throw the red flag. Here is what Schatz said:
Based on our data, there's about an 88% chance that a team will score a touchdown if they start with first-and-goal on the 1. The chance of a turnover is about 3%. I did consider penalties in that 88% chance of scoring a touchdown. I also checked the exact chances of a field goal. So we have:
3% field goal
6% stuffed on fourth
The value of a turnover at the goal line is about -5 points. You end up here with "expected points" of first-and-goal on the 1 being 6.1. So now the question is whether keeping your challenge is worth 0.9 points.
In that spot, I'm not sure it is. Think of all the crazy shit that can happen at the goal line, especially penalties. What if you're playing the Eagles? They ALWAYS fuck up at the goal line. Isn't that where a challenge would prove MOST valuable? And if saving a challenge is indeed worth sacrificing .9 points, how many points are they worth at the absolute max? And how does that value change as time runs out on the clock? Is there life on Maaaaaars?
Schatz said he plans on doing a whole big study on this during the offseason. I look forward to him doing this, because I'm too lazy to do it. And I'd like to have some clear, substantive data on my side to make to help me mock NFL coaches and feel smarter than them, even though I'm really a total retard.
Chiefs at Bengals: One more thing about challenges. Knowing that the two challenges you have each game are rather important to keep, it never makes sense to challenge any call that would appear to be anything other than indisputably wrong. But coaches have no way of knowing this for sure, without consulting someone upstairs who is watching the replays on the monitors.
Now, based on the rules, you have to throw the red flag before the other team gets a play off. So two things come into play here. First off, unless they have access to a live feed of the coach's tape (unlikely so as to prevent signal stealing), a coaching staff is at the mercy of the networks to replay something before the other team can snap the ball. Conceivably then, the networks could royally fuck over any team wanting to challenge a call simply by withholding the replay, thus forcing them to guess. But I'm sure this would never happen. Unless, you know, you're playing the Cowboys, in which case the play will be ignored until four hours later.
Mike Florio says that if the call results in a change of possession, the coach has more time via the television timeout to consider a challenge, which in turn gives him more time to get word from upstairs. But if the call didn't result in a turnover, they have far less time to decide. They gotta make up their mind to use that flag NOW! FUCKING RIGHT NOW, MOTHERFUCKER! I once saw a coach (Brad fucking Childress) take a timeout BEFORE throwing the red flag as a way of getting more time to decide if a call should be challenged.
I don't like all these goddamn grey areas in our challenge system. None of these factors should come into play, because they go against what replay is supposed to be about: namely, correcting egregiously fucked up calls. Why rely on the networks? Why make coaches guess every time they throw the red flag, or give them more time to decide in certain instances and less time in others? It's fucking arbitrary and stupid. You have a replay official up in the booth already, NFL. Just use him. That's what college ball does. Stop making a pointless game within a game of it. Football already has plenty of games within the goddamn game already. Fucking cockpockets.
Redskins at 49ers: More than a few Skins fan are now calling for the head of Team President Vinny Cerrato. Oh, you silly Skins fans. Yes, that'll turn everything around! Let's fire the guy who makes no decisions of any kind! Then we can continue to delude ourselves into thinking a return to glory is just around the corner! ALL THEY HAVE TO DO IS THROW IT 50 YARDS DOWNFIELD EVERY PLEE, COOCH!
Panthers at Saints: Few things in life will baffle me more than Deangelo Williams' sudden transformation into LaDainian Tomlinson. He should have been doing this either ages ago, or not at all. Instead, he decides until three weeks ago to start scoring seven touchdowns a game? What an assbasket.
Titans at Colts
Browns at Steelers
Seahawks at Cardinals
A Brief Message To The Mall Operators Of America
TURN DOWN THE GODDAMN HEAT. Every year I go Christmas shopping, and every year walking into your mall feels like walking into a fucking Russian bath house. There are 70,000 people walking around your mall, gentlemen. All producing body heat, and all wearing sweaters and jackets. Yet you insist on keeping the fucking thermostat at 80 degrees. FUCK YOU. I shouldn't have to feel like a woman going through menopause every time I walk into a fucking Pottery Barn. And the humidity inside any Apple store has to be at least 5,000%. Figure it the fuck out.
Pregame Song That Makes Me Want To Run Through A Goddamn Brick Wall
"Minerva," by Deftones. If you aren't featuring strippers in your video, you damn well better be rocking out in the desert, with kickass slo-mo shots of you fucking shit up in a windstorm. THIS WIND IS SO VERY STRONG, BUT WE SHALL FIGHT IT WITH OUR MIGHTY AMPS! YARRRRRR!!!!
The Deftones kick a whole lotta ass, and the fact that they're a multiracial band helps me feel a whole lot less racist about my musical taste. It's like owning a Living Colour CD back in the 80's. According to the Wiki:
When (guitarist Stephen) Carpenter was 15 years old, he was hit by a car while skateboarding. This left him confined to a wheelchair for several months. It was at this point that he began teaching himself guitar by playing along with bands such as Anthrax, Stormtroopers of Death and Metallica. It has been reported that the driver paid Carpenter a cash settlement that allowed the band to purchase equipment…
NICE! But wait…
…but drummer Abe Cunningham commented in an interview that this was "a myth about how our band was started."
You fool! Don't ruin the myth for me! The fact that your band started as a result of legal entanglements makes it that much more HARDCORE!
Embarassing Album I Once Owned That Will Not Fire You Up
"The Nutcracker." I love "The Nutcracker." I listen to it at least a dozen times every Christmas season. And if that makes me a sugar plum fairy, so be it. Classical music makes me feel fucking classy. Plus it allows me to remember the above scene from Top Secret, which if course the greatest movie ever made ever ever ever.
Fantasy Player That Deserves To Die A Slow, Painful Death
Cedric Benson. If you lost your fantasy championship because the other guy started Cedric on a whim, you have free reign to murder both Benson and the jackass who started him. I hate people who have that kind of luck.
Five Potential Key Injuries
-Adrian Peterson (asphyxia)
-Jay Cutler (asphyxia)
-Mike Shanahan (asphyxia)
-Brett Favre (asphyxia)
-Donovan McNabb (asphyxia)
Suicide Pick Of The Week
Last week's suicide pick of the New Orleans was correct, which makes me 12-3 for the year (last week's 12-3 record was a typo). Off the board now are the Jets, the Giants, New England, New Orleans, Minnesota, Tennessee, Tampa, Carolina, Arizona, Chicago, Jacksonville, Green Bay, Pittsburgh, San Diego, Buffalo, and Detroit. We again choose both a team for your suicide pool and an actual way of committing suicide.
This week's pick? Atlanta, and killing yourself after being accused of rape. Now this I can get behind. All suspected rapists should commit suicide. That way, we know you're guilty, and we don't have to put the victim through some awful trial. It's a happy ending for all parties involved.
Nazi Shark's Vegas Lock Of The Week
Lots of sports sites, to demonstrate the arbitrary nature of gambling, like to have animals like monkeys pick games to see if they can outwit their human counterparts. There's no reason we at Deadspin can't also get in on the fun. So we've asked National Socialist German Workers' Party member Rolf, who also happens to be a shark, to pick one game a week. Take it away, Nazi shark.
"This week, I like Denver getting 8.5 points on the road against San Diego. I've written a Christmas song this year for my fellow believers. I hope you enjoy it.
"Here comes Joseph Goebbels,
Here comes Joseph Goebbels,
Right down Joseph Goebbels Lane!
He's got a can full of Zyklon B,
And he's gonna make it rain!
2008 Nazi Shark Record: 4-10
Great Moments In Sports Poop History
Reader Adam sends in the rare rugby poop story. Take it away, Adam.
"Our fly-half (that's a rugby position) was, as all fly-halves are, a total stud and quite something with the ladies. This is his story. After a particularly successful evening at the local watering hole, he manages to convince a young lady to re-enact the Antler Dance at her place. Things go fairly swimmingly, and she has directed this young buck to the boudoir, running into her room tittering and saying words to the effect of "come and get it." Our protagonist, not wanting to wreck the mood and needing to lay some cable, has put her off by telling her that she should ‘warm herself up' and he'd be in there in just a moment.
"He rushes to the bathroom and takes a record-breaking speed crap. Holding back the pee, and standing up to pee so that it does NOT sound like he has taken a shit. He flushes, and disaster strikes. The toilet overflows, sending chunks of poop cascading over the sides of the vessel and across the floor. Through the door, he can hear his conquest-du-jour saucing herself up and saying, ‘I'm ready to be stuffed like a Thanksgiving Turkey' in various heated ways. Unable to face the shame that he KNOWS is coming upon her discovery of this awful mess, he opens the bathroom door, grabs several towels out of the hall cabinet, and makes a cloth dam to prevent the tide of sewage from washing into the hall.
Saying, ‘I'll be back with some condoms from the car' - he then flees the scene, into the night, unfulfilled.
But why didn't he have sex with her before fleeing? He went to all the trouble of temporarily stopping the flood! Wasn't that so he could hit it and THEN run? Pussy. You ladies out there should never have sex with rugby players, by the way. They'll tear your ears clean off.
Fire This Asshole!
Is there anything more exciting than a coach losing his job? All year long, we'll keep track of which coaches should get fired at year's end or sooner. Thanks to last week's astounding number of choke jobs, our list has some excellent late editions this week. Not a moment too soon! And now, your updated chopping block:
Mike Holmgren (already a given)
Jack Del Rio
That's 16 coaches, half the league. WHEE! Is it really possible that half the league's coaches will get canned or quit in a single offseason? Oh yes, my friend.
I wrote something on Yahoo earlier this year talking about how the Vikings should fire Brad Childress. And one commenter there asked, "Yeah, but who would you replace him with?"
Look, I'm all for continuity. But not when your coach is as continuously aggravating as someone like Brad Childress or Andy Reid. There are coaches who grow into the role, and then there are coaches who make the same retarded mistakes year in and year out, as Reid does (RUN THE BALL, FATTY!). And it just so happens that this year's crop of potential new coaches is quite good: Jim Schwartz, Steve Spagnuolo, Rex Ryan, Josh McDaniels, Bill Cowher, Marty Schottenheimer, etc. It's a better crop than most years.
Would I rather start over with one of those talented candidates than keep going with the jackass currently running my team? FUCK AND YES. Look at what Mike Smith and Tony Sparano did this year. Continuity is only as valuable as the guy you're sticking with. Sometimes, it really IS better to act quickly, even at the expense of appearing rash. Cam Cameron was fired after one year in Miami. Bobby Petrino didn't even last 16 games before fleeing for Arkansas (and if you're the kind of person that prefers being in Arkansas over any other geographic location, you probably aren't going to be an effective leader of any sort).
If continuity is so important, both the Dolphins and Falcons would still be crawling out of the wreckage. But they aren't. They found the right people and turned it around in a fucking snap. And I'll bet you a whole lot of owners out there will take that into account come Monday morning. Merry Christmas, coaches. YOU'RE ALL FIRED.
Gametime Snack Of The Week
Candy canes. I'm not really a fan of the candy cane. Hey kid, here's an after dinner mint shaped like an old person's walking device. Let's hang it on the tree so it'll attract vermin!
Hold a candy cane without the wrapper for longer than three seconds and your fingers suddenly turn into a goddamn glue trap. And if you keep the wrapper on while you're sucking on the end, your fingers are still gonna get sticky anyway. And what do you do when you reach the hook? When I was kid, I just jammed it in my mouth and sucked on it, like a mouthpiece that hadn't been molded yet. Joy. Bite the thing and your teeth will shatter.
No more candy canes. From now on, only peppermint bark. It's what Jesus would have snacked on. I don't like candy canes. But if you smash candy canes up and put them into some other kind of dessert, then you got something.
One-Sentence Excerpt From Men With Balls
"This one's named Jim."
Gametime Beer Of The Week
Anchor Steam Christmas Ale. I get beer, wine, or whiskey from half my family for Christmas every year. Some people would say that's lazy gift-giving. Those people can go die. Never stop gifting me alcohol, mom. It's all I need to be happy.
Random FKS-Style Tidbit
Every day, I have to watch this version of "Wheels On The Bus" with my kid. And every time I do, I curse Roger Daltrey with all the hate in my little black heart. DALTREEEEEEYYYYYY!!!
I don't give a shit if he used to front one of the world's greatest bands. It doesn't make for him dressing up as a giant dinosaur and subjecting me to this bullshit day in and day out. Whooooo are you, Roger Daltrey? I'll tell you who you are: an evil douchebag.
Robert Evans' MVP Watch!
Time to start thinking about who the leaders are for the NFL's MVP award. So every week, legendary Hollywood producer Robert Evans will join us to give us his assessment. Take it away, Mr. Evans.
"Greetings from lovely St. Bart's in the Caribbean! I'm here on my annual holiday vacation with Warren Beatty. Gorgeous? You bet! Wild? You know it. Just last night, Beatty stuck a tennis racket in the concierge's niece! That Annette Bening, God bless her. What a class act that lady is. She knows that sometimes you have to let a man be a man! It's like Warren told me, ‘Evans, I'll never love another woman. I'll fuck plenty of them. But I sure as Hell won't love them.' Amen, baby!
"Your MVP front runner this week is Michael Turner of the Falcons. Shifty? You bet! Powerful? Like Warren's thrusting hips!"
Sunday Afternoon Christmas Special Of The Week For Lions Fans
"Yogi's First Christmas." Anyone else have sexual fantasies about plowing Cindy Bear when they were kids? Um, me neither. Never! Seriously though, that is one hot bear. With one hot beartrap. Look at the lust in her eyes. She wants Yogi to lick her honeypot so very badly. I swear I'd never let that girl hibernate.
Gratuitous Simpsons Quote
"Aren't we forgetting the true meaning of Christmas? You know, the birth of Santa?"
Halftime Masturbation Kit
-For the guys: Girl-kisser Katy Perry. Oof. Chicks with guitars, man. Chicks with guitars.
-For the gals: "Gossip Girl" star Ed Westwick, sans shirt. Ah, "Gossip Girl." The show's whose entire audience consists of the editorial staff at Entertainment Weekly. OMFG! EVERYONE'S TALKING ABOUT THIS SHOW! No, they aren't. Only you are. Move the fuck on.
Your Motivational Pregame Quote For The Weekend
"Okay Mitch, I'm gonna make it up to you. Let's just pause, put that down. Let's just take a step back. No, I was wrong, I'm sorry, take a step forward. Now, take a step back. Step forward. Back. And then we're cha-cha-ing!"
Enjoy the games, everyone. And a very Merry Christmas to you and your families. I hope the holiday finds you and loved ones happy and in good health. Cheers.