Drew Magary's Thursday Afternoon NFL Dick Joke Jamboroo runs every Thursday during the NFL season. Find more of his stuff at his Twitter feed.
This is a very brief message to a very specific set of individuals, namely junior high school, high school and college offensive linemen. Do you play offensive line? Stop. STOP. Quit. Give up. Unless you're good enough to get a free ride and/or a pro contract, you shouldn't play offensive line. Ever. You should demand a position switch to defensive line, or you should quit football and play something else that's fun and awesome.
I don't need to tell you that offensive line is the right field of football positions. You get thrown there if you're too fat and slow to play any other position. And yet, countless newbie offensive linemen in America are being brainwashed by coaches as we speak. Hoodwinked. Bamboozled. These coaches are telling them that playing offensive line is awesome. When you play o-line, all coaches feed you the same line of bullshit about why what you do is so cool:
1. "You get to hit someone on every play!"
This is somewhat true, but you don't get to TACKLE anyone. If you're lucky, you get to catch someone napping and pancake the shit out of them. Otherwise, you don't get to hit people. You get to PUSH them. Or attempt to push them, only to slide off their bodies and fall awkwardly to the ground, at which point your hands get cleated. You don't get to hit someone, wrap your arms around them, and throw them to the turf like the bastards that they are. THAT is satisfying. Blocking people is not.
2. "You are the heart and soul of this team!"
Again, LIES. The one crazy freak athlete you had on your high school team (and most every high school team has one) who would return five punts a game for TD's? THAT guy was the heart and soul of the team. You are interchangeable assholes.
3. "The offensive line is a brotherhood."
Big deal. So is the Lion's Club. At least I won't lose a fingernail when I join their outfit.
Young athletes of today, I'm here today to tell you that offensive is the least enjoyable, least gratifying position in any sport ever. Even the right fielder gets to bat. At least hockey goalies get cool masks. Offensive linemen do nothing cool. You would never play offensive line recreationally. Ever. It blows. There's a reason wide receivers always have to be reminded to block, and that's because blocking is boring and shitty. You can't fully use your hands if you're an o-lineman, which makes you the lone football player who has to act like a soccer player. You never get to touch the ball, or score. You never get to sack the QB. All you get to do is push people, or blow your assignment and get yelled at. You are the fucking extra in the movie.
Many offensive linemen are conditioned to sneer at skill position players, calling them prima donnas and glory hogs. This is because skill position players get to have fun. SHITLOADS OF FUN. If you were a gifted athlete, and you could play guard and quarterback with equal skill, which position would you prefer to play? It's not even a debate. I have no evidence to back this up, but IT'S A FACT: 95% of all offensive linemen, professional or not, don't like playing offensive line.
I am biased here, of course, because I played offensive line for ten years, and I sucked at it. Sucked HARD. I do not know why I played for so long. I really don't. I never played. I rode the bench the whole time. I liked the idea of being a football player than I did actually playing the game, and that's never good. I quit my college football team before my senior year, and my senior year was a GLORIOUS affair, filled with beer and Mario64 and actual hooking up with girls. No more three-hour practices for me! I've got boobs to fondle! I spent my entire senior year pissed at myself that I didn't quit playing football sooner. Now I've got two back surgeries to my name, and I look like an asshole when I walk.
Now, maybe some of you young offensive lineman out there really love it, and are truly passionate about playing the position. My congratulations to all three of you. For the rest of you stuck playing offensive line, QUIT. You aren't a pussy if you quit. You aren't letting your team down. You are walking away from playing a position whose crushed-fingers-to-fun ratio is off the fucking charts. Give it up. Go play soccer, or rugby, or some other sport where you get to run around, have fun, and do cool stuff. Or play NO sports at all. Smoke weed. Did you know I didn't start smoking weed regularly until senior year? IDIOT! HOW COULD I BE THAT SHORT-SIGHTED? Weed is awesome!
Don't make the same mistake I did. Don't spend every fall of your youth trapped on a soaking wet field doing duck walk drills and foot chopping exercises. Offensive line is the chain gang of sports. You are in a PRISON. Quit. Leave. ESCAPE. Go enjoy yourself. LIVE, DAMMIT! Don't waste away on an offensive line. It's totally for suckers.
All games in the Jamboroo are evaluated for sheer watchability on a scale of 1 to 5 Throwgasms.
Pats at Colts: The day he retires, shouldn't the Colts fire whoever is their head coach and just make Peyton the head coach? He's more prepared than 98% of the league's coaches. The guy is a fucking savant. He could engineer Russian nuclear missile subs at this point. Hell, he's already the de facto head coach of this Indy team. At the very least, I'd hire him to be an offensive coordinator immediately. I'm telling you, you may as well quit fighting against having Peyton Manning as a constant fixture in your NFL viewing life. He'll be around forever.
Bengals at Steelers: I was watching the 5,000 ads for that Droid phone they keep pimping during games, and I noticed that, in the legal copy, there was this disclaimer:
"DROID is a registered trademark of LucasFilm Ltd."
So, Verizon paid George Lucas untold shitloads of cash for the right to name their phone the Droid. I'm always in favor of someone taking money from Verizon, but that's amazing. George Lucas is such a cash whore, he trademarked a single fucking word and made a mint off of it. He didn't even have to lift a finger, or create some sort of CG jive-talking eel to do it. I don't whether to be in awe, or to go spit on the fucker's house.
Eagles at Chargers: I bought my wife "Twilight" for her birthday. Big mistake. HUGE mistake.
Bears at 49ers: It's your Thursday Night game with Matt Millen. GAHHHHH MATT MILLEN NOOOOOOO! I've heard Millen call a couple college games this year. He's been okay, I guess. But still, you sit there listening to him, and the whole time, your brain is saying, "HOLY FUCK. IT'S MATT MILLEN, THE LOSINGEST LOSER IN THE HISTORY OF LOSING. AND THEY'RE PAYING HIM TO TALK! WHAT THE FUCK?" It's weird. It's distracting. It's like he broadcasts the entire game with his dick sticking out of his fly.
By the way, NFL scholar and very serious person Gregg Easterbrook wrote this week that the 49ers are now losing because they signed Michael Crabtree.
Beware the Crabtree Curse! San Francisco opened the season 3-1, with its sole loss to powerhouse Minnesota on the game's final snap. Since signing Michael Crabtree, San Francisco has lost four straight — the Niners just rolled over at home against the Titans, who came into the contest 1-6. Coach Mike Singletary had San Francisco's players buying into the notion that no one's bigger than the team. Then, suddenly, you can jerk San Francisco around all you want and get $17 million guaranteed as your reward. San Francisco management's cave-in to the me-first Crabtree triggered an instant losing streak, by communicating to other 49ers the message that the team-first stuff was always just empty talk. Caving in to Crabtree may cost the Niners their season.
Really, Gregg? Does Michael Crabtree play quarterback? Or defense? Because the 49ers are horrible at defense, particularly pass defense. What should the Niners have done, Gregg? NOT signed Crabtree at a reasonable level and lose their draft pick? When Crabtree decided to end his holdout because he desperately WANTED to play? And how were the 49ers abandoning team-first principles when they refused to capitulate to the high salary demands of an individual player? Isn't making sure you sign a talented player without busting your cap EXACTLY a team-first thing to do? And isn't it a smart, team-first move to welcome the guy with open arms, rather than treating him like a fucking leper and holding an endless grudge when he arrives? Oh my God, paying a player $17 million RUINS chemistry! Payroll discrepancies never happen on other NFL teams!
Easterbrook says Crabtree ruined the 49ers with "waves of negativity". OH NO! THE NEGATIVE WAVES! I CAN'T SEE THEM, BUT THEY'RE DISRUPTING OUR PRECIOUS AURAS!
Keep in mind: Gregg Easterbrook has used his column to urge everyone to go to church, and to urge people to never leave the house after midnight because bad things happen. Also, he plays poker with Nazi Shark twice a week. He's a fucking idiot. And verily the Dick Joke God chortled at that pretentious dicksmack.
Falcons at Panthers: Thanks God Mike Smith punched someone. Now he finally has a distinguishing characteristic. Mike Smith? Who? Oh, you mean the Mike Smith who tried to punch out DeAngelo Hall? Oh, he's cool.
Cowboys at Packers
Seahawks at Cardinals: YOU WEREN'T MAN ENOUGH, KEN WHISENHUNT. For real, Anquan Boldin played for the Cardinals with STEEL PLATES IN HIS FUCKING FACE, and no one can bother to tell him he's been deactivated? That's semi-Haleyesque.
Jaguars at Jets: Before we get to this week's poop story below, a quick one of my own. I had to wake up to feed my kid at 6AM earlier this week. I got up and got out of bed. It was still dark outside. I went downstairs to make the bottle, and I fed my kid. All in the dark. Before I got back into bed, I realized I had to take a shit badly. So I head to the john, fart, and sit down to take a shit. I got up and put my boxers back on. They were wet all in the bottom, which was weird. I figured I pissed on them somehow, so I chucked them in the hamper, threw on a new pair, and went back to bed.
One hour later, I wake up and it's light outside. I go to the bathroom. There's liquid SHIT all over the bathroom floor. I freak. I run to the hamper and check the boxers I removed. They're drenched in liquid poop. I check the sheets. Poop. Poopy water everywhere, and I have no idea how it happened. I sat down to shit. My asshole was centered over the toilet. How did all this poopy water get all over the place?
So I'm sitting there later that night, eating dinner with the Mrs. When suddenly, in the middle of the meal, I cry out:
THE FART! I MUST HAVE SHIT STANDING UP WHILE FARTING! IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW! I AM MONK!
She never finished dinner. Oh, and that story reminds me of the Jaguars.
Bills at Titans
Saints at Rams: Okay, so our Asshole Coach Digest got off to a rocky start with this whole Pat Murphy fiasco. But I'll be damned if I give up on a good idea. This week, we got flooded with story after story from poor souls who were terrorized in their youth by asshole, scumbag coaches WHO WILL REMAIN NAMELESS FROM NOW ON AND WERE DEFINITELY NOT PAT MURPHY, WHO IS A LOVELY MAN. Here's one example, from Nick:
Middle School, so like 8th grade. All wanna-be football players are gathered to sign up. Coach calls us down one by one to fill out our names, address, etc. I get down there and he asks my position. I say o-line. He head-butts me. No helmet or anything. Just grabs my head (hand on each temple) and slams his forehead into mine. Still not sure why.
Or THIS one, from apostles03:
I'm older than most Deadspinners, and physical abuse from coaches and teachers was tolerated a lot more when I was a kid than it is nowadays. We had a head coach in my high school program back in the early ‘80's who wore a whistle around his neck, secured by a leather cord. When he got especially pissed off about something, he would take the whistles off of his neck and literally whip a kid with the cord-often he would hit the shoulder pads, but on many occasions he struck the neck or the exposed back/stomach under a practice jersey. This happened maybe every other practice, at least once, to some poor kid.
I personally had to hide welts from my parents or lie about how I got a mark on my back because I didn't want to have to quit football. My parents never found out, but I'm sure some other parents knew. However, nothing was ever done about it.
One guy (an offensive guard) got hit so many times we called him "Toby". Think of the scene from Alex Haley's "Roots." 80's humor! Slap me five!
I'd sure like to whip his old carcass with a leather cord one time before he dies.
You see? Headbutts? Whippings? We can't let these stories go untold! More responsibly reported and safely anonymous emails on Monday.
Ravens at Browns: Good God. This is the Monday Night game? Holy shit, this is awful. It's rare you see a sporting event that could be ENHANCED by Chris Berman talking at the half.
Chiefs at Raiders: My mailman looks like Tom Cable. EXACTLY like him, right down to the constant sweating. And he delivers the mail the exact same way I would imagine Tom Cable delivering the mail. He just jams that shit into the slot as brusquely as humanly possible. He could give two shits if anything tears or folds. He just rapes the hell out of our mail slot. I really need to buy a mailbox.
Bucs at Dolphins: Our own Will Leitch wrote a rather pleasant and complimentary piece on Bill Simmons this week. I don't disagree with most of what Will wrote. Simmons absolutely created a new style and made old-school sports columnists instantly obsolete. I used to read him compulsively and still read most anything he writes about football or basketball. But I will tell you this: Underneath it all, Simmons still has the same DNA as the Mariottis of the world: thin skin, a steadfast belief that he's a genius when it comes to all things sports-related, bad nicknames for people (Dumbleavy? Really?), and a very small well of repeated joke memes. His voice was completely new and refreshing, but the message is often the same as the old guard. "These coaches don't know what they're doing!" "I told you something I predicted would come to pass!" There's still that self-lionization. And that's the frustrating thing about Simmons. I wish he'd leave those vestiges of the old sports writing world behind. He doesn't need them to be great. I wish he didn't always feel compelled to be the smartest asshole at the bar. Then he'd become an even greater force than he already is.
Lions at Vikings: NFL Shop always has a signature clothing pattern every year. This year, it's the "drift" pattern. Now, this is the ugliest fucking shirt I've ever seen. What is this, 1993? Jesus.
Broncos at Redskins: This game's bad. Know what's worse? A remake of "Paradise City" featuring Slash, Fergie, and B-Real of Cypress Hill.
And friend sent me this specifically to make me angry. Mission accomplished, sir. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.
Pregame Song That Makes Me Want To Run Through A Goddamn Brick Wall
"New Fang," by Them Crooked Vultures. Josh Homme. Dave Grohl. John Paul Jones. Yep, that's my band. And you know who's not in this group? GODDAMN FUCKING FERGIE.
Embarassing Mixtape Track I Once Owned That Will Not Fire You Up
"Iesha," by Another Bad Creation. Ah, the East Coast Family. This entire group of bands fell off the face of the fucking Earth right before the turn of the century. I don't even see Boyz II Men on the nostalgia circuit. And what about that white band Michael Bivins had in one of these videos? I can't even remember their name (I thought they were in the "MotownPhilly" video, but I didn't see them). They looked like jackasses. I'm glad they never made it. Anyway, as of 2006, ABC still apparently existed. At the playyyyygrooooound…
UPDATE: Sudden Impact! Reader nvasconcelos identified them. Read more about the horribleness of Sudden Impact here.
Open Mailbag Tuesdays
Got something you want displayed for show and tell in the Deadspin Tuesday Mailbag? Dark meat, perhaps? Email me any question or observation you like.
Fantasy Player That Deserves To Die A Slow, Painful Death
Brian Westbrook. Oh, it was only a matter of time before he showed up here, with his brutal late scratch. YOU BASTARD. Aww, what's the matter, Brian? Your poor widdle head hurt? Afraid you'll get post-concussion syndrome? YOU PUSSY. You get out there, and you get your head bashed in. OUR FINANCIAL WELFARE DEPENDS ON IT. It's too late to undo the damage now! You'll be a wreck of a human being in a decade anyway! You'll be wandering the streets naked, squeezing block of cream cheese between your hands. GET ON THAT FIELD AND DANCE, RUNNERBOY!
Suicide Pick Of The Week
Last week's suicide pick of Atlanta was correct, making me 8-1 on the year. That puts the Falcons, Bears, Colts, Eagles, Vikings, Texans, Ravens, Saints and Skins off the board now. We once again pick a team for your suicide pool and something that makes you WANT to commit suicide. This week's pick? The Jets, and Silverstar headlights. I saw an ad for these things during the game the other day. They say they're brighter, and safer for your kids and all that shit. What they don't say is that fancy headlights like these will fucking BLIND every driver on the opposite side of the road. This shit is getting ridiculous. You have to drive with sunglasses on at night now because other assholes' headlights are brighter than the surface of a fucking white dwarf.
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 the Bears getting 3 points on the road against the 49ers. Hey, you lay off my poker buddy Easterbrook. Know what he calls it when you spike a one-eyed jack on the river? An EISNER. The guy's one of us."
2009 Nazi Shark Record: 6-3. He's back on track!
This Week's Pants Party Winner
Last week's Pants Party winner was J. Burns. He did not come to claim his prize. This week's winner was J. Mullins. Mr. Mullins, come and claim your rant prize. If you're related to Shawn Mullins, I will punch you in the tit. Everytheeeeeng's gonna be allll right, ROCK A BYE! God, I hate that song. I bet Fergie co-wrote it.
Great Moments In Poop History
Regrettably, I said in Tuesday's mailbag that it's probably impossible for someone to clog a toilet with poop alone. Well, I was fucking WRONG. Over a dozen people emailed in to tell me about the triumphant times in which they, or a loved one, stopped up an open toilet drain with a poopy softball with the density of a neutron star. Reader Mike sends in the most harrowing tale of the bunch.
What follows is a bad story. About my mother. If you use this, please exclude my last name.
My mom gets horribly constipated. Cannot go to the bathroom more than once a week, and frequently only has "movement" once every two weeks. It's just the way she's designed, for whatever weird horrible "God is going to punish you for your parents sins" type of reason.
One day she comes out of the bathroom, beat red and crying. The toilet clogged. Well, ok mom, go get a plunger. No, like it REALLY clogged and water was overflowing, my dad, soldier that he is, goes and gets the plunger. I follow from a safe distance. Yes, the toilet is actually overflowing, and I leave the room to get towels to mop off the shit water.
About 30 seconds later as I'm looking for garbage towels to use, my Dad comes back. Direct quote: Plunger won't work, the shit is stuck, I'm gonna have to chop it up, do we have an old butcher knife? Lo and behold, my dad, in about 3 inches of my mom's shit water, had to chop of a large ball of compressed excrement of my mom's lodged directly in the exit hole of the toilet.
God only knows how she got that thing out on her own without going to emergency.
Oh, man. Butchered poop. Are you as horrified as I am? Let us huddle for warmth.
Now, for a proper poop story from reader Darrin. He calls it, "The Poopsicle."
When I was in college attending the fine Fairfield University in Connecticut (which is a terrible state filled with terrible people), we lived in large cookie-cutter townhouses during our junior and senior years. Our group being accepting and jovial drinkers, we didn't really have a problem with anyone. Except, we lived next to a set of thoroughbred guido neighbors. Orange faces, gold crosses, super spiked hair gel. These guys were born, bred, and raised on the Jersey shore. Needless to say, we hated these guys.
Fast forward to Christmas Vacation. My Canadian roommate and I were enjoying an empty campus and a full bottle of Jager. He couldn't pay for a flight home and I'm an alcoholic. We drank for 10 days straight. The digestive system of a human male simply was never meant to process ramen noodles, pizza, and liters of alcohol over a long period of time. Finally, this crested when we were playing some Xbox, and I announced a shit of epic proportions was coming. I bolted to the bathroom, and I heard my roommate leaving the house. While in the bathroom, I was working up to it, as I could feel a mammoth stampeding toward the exit when there was a knock on the bathroom door. The door then opens and a red cooler slides in, and the door closes. "The guidos left their cooler on the porch. Shit in it".
Three simply words. "Shit. In. It." I have never had more respect for someone.
So I scooted my ass forward and braced myself on the sides of the cooler. I huffed and I puffed, and I heard a loud plop. The smell was horrendous, I couldn't even breathe. I hopped back onto the toilet to clean myself, and I had to put the lid on the cooler or I wasn't going to make it. I opened the door and my roomate was half way across the room telling me how much it reaked.
I dragged the cooler back to the porch, but I just had to take a look, see what papa made. I looked down and there it was. It looked like it came from an elephant. A constipated elephant. Who hadn't shit in weeks. My roomate is now convinced that I have some sort of bowel disorder, because the evidence in the cooler was inhuman.
We waited, and we waited, and it stayed there for a month, then two. Meanwhile I had told everyone I knew, who would stealthily sneak a glimpse of the turdious maximus. But the cooler never moved. Finally, mid-February, the cooler is the middle of the common area, where it was clearly hurled a long distance, broken open, and, now resembling swamp thing, my magnificence had rolled out into the grass, still frozen in ice that had gathered in the cooler. It was now like a poop-ice sculpture, a poopsicle if you will.
Fire This Asshole!
Is there anything more exciting than a coach losing his job? All year long, we'll keep track of which coaches will almost certainly get fired at year's end or sooner. And now, your updated chopping block:
Jack Del Rio*
We welcome Andy Reid to the chopping block with open arms. And we take a moment to acknowledge Dallas Morning News writer Jean-Jacques Taylor, who apparently lives in some parallel universe where Philadelphians adore Andy Reid and wish him nothing but peace and rainbows. "Philadelphia trusts Reid implicitly." It does? Do you even know where Philadelphia is? Are you aware that it's located in Pennsylvania and is filled with impatient dickheads? It reminds me of this sketch.
"And do these lions eat ants?"
Gametime Snack Of The Week
Ants on a log! Do I lick the groove of the celery and then discard it, without ever actually eating the vegetable part? Fuck and yes, I do. Adults always try and get kids to get healthy shit by tossing unhealthy shit on top of it. But kids aren't stupid. Eating big chunks of celery is awful. Like biting into a roll of dental floss.
My wife bought that fucking Jessica Seinfeld cookbook, the one where you make spinach purees and shit and bake them into muffins. The kid took one sniff of the muffin and cast it overboard. Jessica Seinfeld, you can eat hog.
Gametime Cheap Beer Of The Week
TESCO! Reader Mark C. writes in:
Last week's Chinese beer selection sparked my memory of the greatest cheap beer in the world. TESCO brand beer (or "lager" if you're some fancy Englishman) is the cheap beer of the world. TESCO is the Wal-Mart of the UK. While studying in Belfast in college, another broke American college student and I were perusing the beer and wine aisle in TESCO looking for the ultimate combination of cheap and drunk. An Irish bum with an incredible dirty beard and even better accent got our attention. He grumbled "Try this shit, it will get you fucked up." It seems TESCO produces what's called "value lager." It's 91 pence (or about $1.50) for 4 pints. That's about 6 twelve-ounce beers for $1.50. Ever drank 12 beers for 3 bucks?
Discounting keg party fees? Can't say that I have. Man oh man, that is some cheap as shit stale piss. Look at those cans. It looks like jock itch spray. Mmmm, frothy jock itch spray. I MUST HAVE IT.
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.
"Baby, my favorite for the NFL's MVP this year is still a TIE between Drew Brees of the Saints and Peyton Manning of the Colts! I was saddened recently to hear that my good friend Denny Hopper is suffering from prostate cancer. AND WHAT A PROSTATE! Big? You bet! That puppy has churned out more Easy Riders than a Mumbai sperm bank! I spent some time with Hop in Aruba when he was directing a short film that no one has ever seen. It was called GIRL ON A ROPE. And it was about a man, played by Hop, who sucked morphine straight from the bag and kept his wife on a rope! And Hop studied for that role by sucking morphine straight from the bag and keeping his wife on a rope! For eight weeks! Dedicated? YOU BET! Crazy as Hell? Goddamn right."
Sunday Afternoon Movie Of The Week For Browns Fans
A Perfect World. This was an awesome movie. Except for the scenes with Clint Eastwood, which comprise half the movie. Cut those scenes out, and it's fucking awesome. But I didn't like the scene where Kevin Costner has the kid make mayonnaise sandwiches. And then they eat mayonnaise sandwiches. That is fucking horrible and worse than anything in the Saw films.
Gratuitous Simpsons Quote
"Come to Duff Gardens, where roaming gangs aren't a problem anymore!"
Enjoy the games, everyone.