The NFL Bandwagons: Week 7 Edition
Published: Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 23, 2012 23:10
After experiencing seven weeks of the NFL, maybe it really is a dog’s world after all. You could take the football season as a whole and dissect it in any manner you desire, but it may actually be easiest to look at through the eyes of a canine.
This past weekend, I tried doing just that. Now, I don’t know if it’s because I miss my Golden Retriever and Bernese Mountain Dog back home, or if it’s due to the fact that I have been as sick as a dog lately, but I succeeded. And, unless your name happens to unfortunately be Michael Vick, I would recommend that you try this yourself next week.
You see, if I never had this revelation, I never would have tied certain things together. Take Panthers QB Cam Newton for example. This guy was Superman last year, running for 14 touchdowns and throwing for 21 more. Flash-forward to the present day and the complete opposite is happening. Cam has already lost more fumbles through six games than he did all of last year, his QBR (Quarterback Rating) is down 24% and the Panthers are an abysmal 1-5. There’s only one explanation for Newton’s sophomore slump: his puppy has died. At least, that’s the look he gives to the media after every single loss. Those press conferences are right up there with Bobcats games as the most depressing thing in North Carolina.
Staying on the subject of pooches, it’s nice to see that Titans RB Chris Johnson finally came out of the doghouse this past Sunday. CJ2K, maybe the most inappropriate and comical nickname since Jets fans started referring to Mark Sanchez as “Sanchize,” was taken off his leash and ran wild in a 35-34 win. Johnson had 195 yards and 2 touchdowns on just 18 carries, including an 83-yard gallop that made his fantasy owners smile for what seemed like the first time since Nam.
Lastly, I learned a lot about Robert Griffin III by watching him from a dog’s point-of-view. The verdict is still out on whether or not RGIII is a descendant of a rare poodle breed, however the case is closed on whether or not the Redskins leader can play. Just ask Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora who described Griffin as “flat-out unbelievable” and deemed him “the best quarterback we’ve played all year.” Keep in mind, this high-praise comes after a Giants win, in which the young pup looked somewhat human for once with two second-half turnovers.
Enough about the hounds for now though, because that might get Mike Vick excited. When dogs get happy, they wag their tails and sometimes lose control of their bodily fluids. When Vick gets excited, he just fumbles. Therefore, without further ado, let’s examine the NFL bandwagons for Week 7.
Hop on the Bandwagon, Quickly:
Vincent Jackson: While I never get confused for Steve Bartman (where you at, Cubs fans?), I do make grave mistakes sometimes. This year, my crucial error occurred in one of my fantasy football drafts, when I took Patriots WR Brandon Lloyd over Bucs wide-out Vincent Jackson in the fifth round. While Lloyd’s face continues to be found on milk cartons throughout the Boston area, V-Jax has settled in quite nicely in his first year in Tampa Bay. On Sunday, he went for 216 receiving yards, which by my account is more than 9 starting quarterbacks this week. Go grab this guy in your league if you can.
Adrian Peterson: Exactly 10 months ago from today (Wednesday), Vikings All-Pro Adrian Peterson tore the ACL in his left knee. As if that wasn’t bad enough, AP was cuffed in July for resisting arrest in a Houston nightclub. Seeing that he couldn’t even outrun the cops, many feared that Peterson would never return to his dominant, pre-injury form. Boy, were they wrong. Versus the Cardinals in Week 7, “Purple Jesus” ran for a season-high 153 yards, and he even punched it in the end zone for the first time since the opening game. Needless to say, Peterson’s bandwagon is crowded once again, and rightly so.
Frank Gore: The New York Giants manhandling of the 49ers in Week 6 made us reminisce about the good old days: when Alex Smith couldn’t hit water if he fell out of a boat. It was apparent on Thursday night, when San Fran played the Seahawks, that Jim Harbaugh’s game-plan was to feature a lot less Smith and a lot more Frank Gore. Gore had a game-high 131 rushing yards as well as a game-high 51 receiving yards, and considering he touched the rock just 21 times (16 rushes, 5 catches) makes that rare feat all the more impressive. Like both wine and Jennifer Lopez, the 29-year old Gore gets better over time.
Be Aware of the Nearest Emergency Exit
AFC North: For the better part of the last decade, the AFC North has been one of the best divisions in football. Suddenly, too many star players have either worn out, been traded, or gotten hurt. At 1-6, the Browns are still in Cleveland, still awful, and still wondering what happened to Braylon Edwards. The Bengals (3-4) took it pretty hard when NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell informed them that they must play real NFL teams, thus excusing Cincinnati from consecutive losses to the Dolphins, Browns, and Steelers. Speaking of those Steelers (3-3), they’ve already fallen to the Raiders and Titans on the road. And please, don’t even get me going on the Ravens (5-2) and their “defense.” Baltimore is fading faster than King James’s hairline.