What Would Football Look Like If It Were Played With Baseballs?

Time for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Find more of Drew's stuff at KSK or on Twitter. Preorder Drew's new book, The Postmortal, right here. Email the Funbag here. Today, we're covering teleportation, gloveball, rage, and more.

Your letters:

Solo Rap Group:

I am in the middle of my first-ever softball season (I played soccer growing up, so I never got into baseball or - later on, by extension - softball), and during warmups I cannot help but wonder how effective I could be as a quarterback if I was able to throw a softball instead of a football. I could get more velocity and far more accuracy. I also could throw more efficiently off-balance and on the run. I could throw flat-footed if I needed to, as well.

Keeping in mind that all other quarterbacks would still have to use a regulation football, I feel that I could probably be a decent starter for a Division II college team if I could use a softball or baseball.

This raises the larger issue, however: what level of quarterbacking could you rise to if you could throw the object of your choice?

I think arm strength would still serve to weed out the good from the bad when it comes to quarterbacking with softballs. Sure, maybe you're all right when using a softball instead of a football, but wouldn't Peyton Manning still be that much better than you if he made the same transition? You aren't gonna be better than him. He'll still be more accurate, throw the ball farther, and be able to read the defense. Same as if you used tennis balls, and oh how I adore playing football with a tennis ball. I feel like Hercules when I throw a tennis ball. A tennis ball is the ultimate ball. You can throw it far. You can throw it fast. And it's nowhere near as terrifying as staring down a baseball or hardly thrown football (NOTE: I'm talking about recreational scenarios here. Obviously, if I were facing Goran Ivanisovic and he was serving to me, I'd be making beefaroni in my pants). Tennis balls are wondrous objects.

UPDATE: I totally missed part of SRG's question about everyone else still having to use footballs. Shit.

Anyway, SRG's email makes me think about what football would look like if it were played using softballs (or baseballs) and receivers were allowed to use a glove to catch the ball. Pass interference in this game would be LEGAL, and defenders would be able to wear gloves if they wanted. You may not want a glove because you think it interferes with your tackling ability. That would be part of the strategy. And then the QB could retaliate against overly enthusiastic pass rushers by beaning them on throwaway downs like third and long. The only problem is that no one would ever fumble. Except for Steve Slaton. He'd still find a way to fucking fumble.

I have no idea if Gloveball (PATENT PENDING!) would make for an exciting sport. Maybe it would be more fun with jai alai baskets. Surely, there's someone out there willing to experiment.

Dan:

I was wondering how long an actual medieval sword fight would have lasted. Hollywood makes them go on for almost five minutes, but wouldn't they really last about 30 seconds tops? And would you rather have a sword, or one of those swinging metal spike balls?

Well, the sword vs. flail question would be entirely dependent upon length. A two-foot sword is no match for a five-foot flail, and vice versa. Assuming both are the same length, I think I'd take the sword, and here's why. There's no way, in my amateur hands, that I could not wield a flail without somehow ending up whipping the spiked ball back into my fucking face. Or I'd raise the flail back behind me and the ball would whack me right in the ass. There just way too much room for error with that thing. YOU DON'T KNOW WHERE THAT CRAZY BALL IS GONNA GO! So I'd opt for the sword even though, deep down, I know the flail is a more badass way to go. If you were to hold down that Slate guy who wrote an essay about how terrible pie is and told me I could beat him to death with either a sword or a flail, I'd take the flail. Because you get the impact of a blunt weapon with the stabbing ability of a sharp weapon. It's the best of both worlds!

As for the first question, the average regulation fencing match lasts no longer than 11 minutes, with 3-minute periods and rest. Obviously, if you're in a real medieval sword fight, you aren't dueling with blunted weapons in a friendly competition. And you aren't gay. So yeah, reduce that time considerably.

Matt:

I just spent 45 minutes creating the best Chicken Sandwich on 4 dollar bread(a great rarity) before this Bruins game only to turn my back and have the dog devour both sandwiches OFF THE 4 FOOT COUNTER, without a trace. Do kids do this? If so, I'm getting my tubes tied tomorrow.

Kids? No, kids tell you to make the sandwich and then, when you serve it to them, they demand you make something else instead. Then you have to summon all the strength in the world to keep from taking their little heads and bashing them into the wall. I'm so used to being ordered around by my kid that I went to a birthday party a couple weeks ago and one of my kid's friends starting bossing me around and I just did what she said. She was making an imaginary pizza and I had to mix all the imaginary ingredient for her and shit, and she kept changing her demands because she was the WORST BOSS EVER, and after ten minutes I was like, "Wait a second? Why am I even listening to you? You're not MY kid. Piss off!" Then I just walked the fuck away. Didn't even give two weeks notice. The kid turned around and I was gone. That'll learn her!

Anyway, I digress. No, kids won't steal your food like that. At least, not when they're young. But then they get older, and I imagine that whole paradigm shifts. Eventually, they're eating every goddamn thing in the house and leaving nothing for you. I know this is true because I did it. I remember my mom would be like, "Now, don't eat those Doritos. Those are for the birthday party." And I'd be like, "Fuck you, lady." Then I'd plow through the thing and my mom would see the empty bag in the trash and go apoplectic.

And we'd drink all the milk too. Constantly. My mom would come home with two gallons of milk and five seconds later… GONE. And she'd be like, "I am NOT going out for milk again, damn you!" And then she did. Parents are suckers.

So eventually, my kids will stop being fussy and turn into sociopathic feedbags who clean out the fridge daily and leave me in financial ruins. I can't wait. Anything's better than the fussiness.

Cheese Mac:

My wife's an ER doc and every once in a while will send me a picture of some of the weirder things she sees. This guy came in with a troubling chief complaint. It will never go back.

What Would Football Look Like If It Were Played With Baseballs?

GAHHHHH! And now my bitter hands chafe beneath the clouds… Of what was everythaaaaaaaang…

Chris:

Saturday > Friday > Sunday > Thursday > Tuesday > Wednesday > Monday

That is all.

Fair enough, but that entire ranking goes out the window if you're a parent. If you're a parent, Saturdays are fucking exhausting. The kids are out of school, you have to take them to some fucking birthday party, you try and take them to a restaurant only to have the whole thing blow up in your face, and worst of all, you spend that entire Saturday wistfully remembering when Saturdays were the shit. LIFE IS CRUEL.

HALFTIME!

(Check out how attractive the model in this video is compared to Material Issue's lead singer. The disparity is almost cruel.)

Rob:

Was just reading a piece on Vulture...an interview with 14 TV Showrunners. The first section is on their best failed pitch. Kevin Biegel, of Cougar Town and Scrubs offered this:

"There's a real script floating around for a show called Time Jack, about a guy who, every time he masturbates, he travels through time. If he hates the time, he whacks off and he's gone. If he loves it, he can stay-as long as he doesn't masturbate. The idea is the low point of us as a society, but such a tremendous low point that I wish I'd created it."

The question is...say you jump to the late 60s, music is awesome, anything goes, broads are givin up the tail like its going out of style...how long do you last before the need to rub one out sends you twisting through time? And the other side, you're transported to Nazi Germany, how long do you get stuck there? Do you drop trou in the middle of Berlin and start pounding away, hoping you can finish before you're beaten and locked up? Considering you just finished up, are you able to bounce back and draw a map of Hawaii on your stomach in a pressure packed situation?

Jesus, I wish that show had been approved. That's the greatest concept of all. Imagine the promos for it. "JIMMY RANDALL HAS COME A LONG WAY." Obviously, sticking around in a period you enjoy means becoming a sex addict. You'd have to hire a hooker or find someone willing to sleep with you at least twice daily (maybe more) to keep the urges away. And what if you traveled into the future and they had fuckbots? Does fucking a fuckbot count as masturbation, even if the fuckbot is incredibly lifelike? How could you possibly resist a fuckbot for more than three seconds? BACK TO THE JURASSIC AGE WITH YOU. Suddenly, it's nail-biting suspense as you try and rub one out to your old fuckbot with a T-Rex boring down on you. God, that show makes "Terra Nova" sound like a pile of shit. I'd give anything to watch it. The show would have a loyal audience of me and four other people, and it would be cancelled after two episodes. But oh, how glorious those episodes would be. At the very least, it would have made a fine "Twilight Zone" vignette.

CJ:

How much do you think something the President's Nuclear Football would be go for the open market?

According to Wikipedia, in order for the President to use the Nuclear Football…

The President must be positively identified using a special code issued on a plastic card, nicknamed the "biscuit".[4] The United States has a two-man rule in place, and while only the President can order the release of nuclear weapons, the order must be confirmed by the Secretary of Defense.

So without the SecDef with you, that briefcase is essentially worthless, except as a collector's item. But oh, what a collector's item. I'd build an addition on my house just to showcase it.

Adam:

Is the president allowed to drink alcohol? What would happen if Obama got absolutely hammered and told the military to start dropping nukes on Argentina? Are there any laws or guidelines that address this situation?

The President is an American citizen over the age of 21 and of course free to drink if he sees fit. I don't think Obama is a teetotaler. He probably enjoys a beer every now and then. Some Presidents were famous for being hammered all the time: Nixon, Grant, etc. This site details a number of notorious drunk Presidents, especially most of the old-timey Presidents, because everyone was way cooler about drinking back then. Frankly, I prefer a President who drinks to one who's sobered up, as W was while he was in office. That's the hardest job in the fucking universe, and you're not gonna have a drink at the end of the day? I think that probably causes you to order MORE unnecessary missile attacks than a President who's drunk all the time. "God, I wish I had a drink right now… BOMB CUBA FOR ME."

Vaughn:

If teleportation was feasible and economically viable as a commuting alternative, everyone would live in Brazil and teleport to and from work in the city of their choosing. This would be amazing.

To live in an extremely overcrowded Brazil with 9 billion other people? That wouldn't be pleasant at all, muchacho. Now, we discussed the economic realities of Big Teleportation in an earlier Funbag, but we didn't really touch on what would happen if everyone could, indeed, teleport anywhere they wished. First of all, crime would spike instantly, because what's keeping people from teleporting directly into your home and raping you in your sleep? You'd need some sort of teleportation security system, but what if that technology lagged behind the teleportation technology and there was a brief window where you couldn't prevent people from teleporting into your rectum? CHAOS. Or what if they were just freeloaders looking for a place to squat for the night? Again, CHAOS.

And where would you live? Would you live in one spot, or would you choose a new place to sleep every night? How would the world handle the migratory patterns of human beings changing overnight? How would you prevent a zillion refugee immigrants from crossing our precious national borders and TAKIN' ER JERBS?! It could cause an incredible number of problems.

/begins writing second dystopian novel

Then again, there would be some cool side effects. For example… no more cities. You don't have to commute, that means you can live as far away as you please. We'd be able to spread out over more of the country and have more space. Inflated real estate prices in urban areas would drop. Best of all, when you order a pizza, that shit arrives INSTANTLY. Want noodles from a Vietnamese street vendor? BOOM. Done. We'd all be eating like Nazis, I tell you.

One last thing: The clothing issue. Let's say they do invent instant teleportation, only it won't teleport your clothes or any objects in your possession. So they'd have to set up private stalls in public places with clothes ready for you when you travel. Basically, we'd all be sharing the same clothes. And maybe you'd be skittish about it at first, but wearing used underwear is a small price to pay for zapping anywhere you goddamn please.

Taco:

My friends and I were discussing if you were offered $5 million, how long would you be willing to go to jail for? Let's assume that after you come out, you can still get employed, get a mortgage, etc. Pretty much very few consequences. Let's also say that it's medium security, so you're not hanging out with serial murderers, but you still might get bunked with someone convicted of grand theft auto or other crimes like that and there is still the chance that you could get raped by Kevin Bacon like in Sleepers. I think I could do two years. I'd love $5 million and I could definitely get my college six-pack back and read a few books.

Are we assuming I'm Hypothetical Single Drew here, without family consequences? Because that unfortunately factors in. You can't miss two years of your children just for the sake of money. Then again, tuition costs… OOF. Maybe you could. I don't think I could, especially with the rape card still in play. Take away the rape card entirely and it's a whole different story. Then you're talking about two years of confinement, not unlike being the pissboy at some fucking law firm where you work 18-hour days or whatever. With the right attitude, you could probably do that time for the money. Definitely if you're single, I think some guys would agree to a two years, maybe more. It's a business trip at that point. Anything past three or four is pushing it. Now you're talking about losing entire portions of your 20s. Although the street cred would be fabulous.

Given my current situation, I went to Mrs. Drew and asked her what the maximum time would be.

ME: A year?

HER: No way. I'm alone with the kids for a full year? UH UH. Less than six months.

ME: So six months would work?

HER: Well, my folks do live nearby.

So there you have it. Six months. The wife also suggested a scenario where you get paid $1 million a year for every year you stay in jail. How many years would you last? I think we could make money for the prison system by making this offer to people and then televising it. There'd be no shortage of applicants, I'm telling you.

Matt:

What would be easier, to hit safely in a Major League game over the course of a season, or to gain 100 yards from scrimmage in the NFL over the course of a season?

This is not to denigrate hitting a Major League fastball, which seems damn near impossible, but I have to think it's getting the base hit over the course of 162 games. Just close your eyes and swing at every pitch and eventually luck will reward you with a dopey bloop single. Whereas in football, you may find that blockers have opened up an enormous hole once in a while, but you aren't anywhere near fast enough to do anything useful with it before the defenders close in on you. And you only have sixteen games to do it. 100 yards from scrimmage means you have to have more than one successful play, as opposed to one hit, which is just a single instance of a successful at bat. If the challenge were 10 hits versus 100 yards, then it gets much harder to figure out. Ten hits would be terrifying.

Okay, time for our email of the week. Go for it, Dan.

Dan:

I play FIFA World Cup with a buddy of mine over xbox live a few times a week. We are both of below average skill level, but the games are almost always nailbiters that are decided after the 80th minute or so. Thing is, this game induces a rage within me that does not manifest itself in any other aspect my life. My neighbors most definitely think I am a hateful racist due to the slurs I scream at the top of my lungs at my TV whenever my players do something stupid or allow a goal (this is NEVER my fault). My rage grows exponentially depending on: A. The audible excitedness in my friend's voice after a goal, B. The celebration dance he has his player perform, and C. How many times he lets the replay play.

In the past year I have had to buy 3 new controllers and about 5 microphones due to slamming them against the floor or throwing them at the wall, for a total of almost $300 of rage fueled damage. Again, I am losing nothing more than an online soccer match. I am not a violent person, but I am almost positive I would punch a baby if one was nearby during a game. I've kept my composure better after losing a couple hundred dollars playing blackjack at the casino. As with most Americans, I don't even watch soccer unless it's the world cup. What the hell is wrong with me? I'm 24.

I think we need to find a way to get Dan to play this game while also driving an automobile. We could power city grids with his rageahol.