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Commentary from the Edge - Week 10
Kevin Ratterree
November 4, 2008
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I would like to start out this week thanking our fine political candidates for all of their thoughtful gestures. Taking the time to have their machines call me numerous times a day to tell me all of those scary stories. Proclaiming environmental awareness and yet killing perfectly good trees to make sure I got the scary stories in print, just in case I missed any of the 50 telephone calls.

Lots of lies in a political campaign. And to be perfectly honest (if I may), it is our own fault. If politicians told us the truth, we would never vote for them. We can’t handle the truth. The truth hurts. You will notice that sometimes in the comments section of this column. I tell people the truth. They get angry. They despise me.

Bill Cowher can’t handle the truth. I saw him on the CBS pregame show reacting to Boomer Esiason’s assertion that Ben Rothlisberger’s problem was that he was holding onto the ball too long. Cowher was shaking his head in total blind disagreement. That’s Cowher’s boy. Boy got Cowher a ring. Cowher can’t admit the truth. But the truth was revealed 36 hours later in front of a national audience.

Something amazing happened when Rothlisberger hurt his shoulder (maybe from holding the ball too long?). Suddenly with Byron Leftwich the Steelers offensive line suddenly looked a lot better. And we all know that if Leftwich is anything it is non-mobile. Yet he matched Rothlisbergers first half production with his first 3 passes. The Steelers took control of the game and that was that. Whole different team in the second half.

Cowher was probably sitting at home watching it still shaking his head.

The truth shall set you free.

And that’s why I ask you today brothers and sisters. Can you handle the truth?

Are you still starting Ryan Grant just because some bonehead fantasy writer told you he was going to be good this season?

Are you ready to admit that you screwed up when you drafted Edge and let the guy who is about to kick your ass get Hightower?

Speaking of the Cardinals are you ready to accept the fact that they are actually going to the playoffs this year?

Are you ready to admit that you love to see the Redskins lose just so you can watch Danny boy stamp his little feet.

Can you accept the fact that Brandon Marshall isn’t going to lead your team to a championship like you were convinced he was going to after week 3?

Say it with me now. Roddy White is a stud. It’s the truth.

Are you ready for the previous last place finisher in the NFC South to win the division for the 5th year in a row?

The Dolphins won 6 games in the two years before Parcells arrived. They have already won 4 at the halfway point of Parcells’ first year. With Pennington at quarterback. A season and a half removed from Parcells the Cowboys are like a disaster movie. Is there anybody out there that is still not seeing this truth?

Here is a sad new truth. You can’t avoid commercials any more by leaving the room for commercial breaks. The commercials are being worked into the program. Just like in the early days of television, those primitive days when the stars of the shows played pitchman, hawking cigarettes to unsuspecting viewers. Last Sunday, Fox actually had a lengthy commercial cleverly disguised as regular studio programming. To tell you the truth Fox, the cargo capacity of the F-150 is pretty low on my need to know list on Sunday morning.

And to tell you the truth, Fox, you forced me to do something I hate to do. I watched the CBS pregame show while you were trying to cram an F-150 down my driveway. CBS told me everything I wanted to know about the cargo capacity of your truck. Plus I got to see that Bill Cowher moment of denial. You got your money and I got a column. And I am sure somebody out there was so impressed with that cargo capacity, that they went right out and bought one Monday morning. Everybody’s happy. To tell you the truth.

Misery Index

10) 49ers: Isn’t this something. This team is probably just as bad as last year’s version, yet they find themselves on the outer fringe of the Index. The 49ers aren’t getting better but the league is deteriorating around them. Speaking of deteriorating, how about that Singletary. It only took one sloppy half of football to get him to drop his pants. I shudder to think where all that ends up if it starts with dropping your pants.

9) Seahawks: Alright kids. Time for a math quiz. The Seahawks have now been outscored by an average of 30-10 in their 5 non-divisional games. Their closest loss in a non-divisional game was a 10 deficit at home against the Packers. This week they have to travel aaaaaaaaaall the way down to Miami. About the longest flight you can take in the lower 48. The Dolphins are a 9 point favorite in that game. The game starts at 9AM Seattle time. Which team should you bet all of your Steve Largent rookie cards on? I’ll give you as much time as you need.

8) Cowboys: The ‘boys seemed to almost sense what was in store for them at the Meadowlands on Sunday. Thank you sir, may I have another. Wade “Iron Fist” Phillips threw in the white towel for Brad Johnson early in the “contest” and satisfied questions Cowboys fans might have had about Bollinger. Yeah. Just as bad as Johnson. Third string QB’s are generally 3rd string QB’s for a reason. And underachieving teams are generally underachieving teams for a reason. Or in this case, several reasons.

7) Bengals: I am going to assume that the Bengals victory was more about the ineptitude of the Jags than the eptitude of the victors. Anyway, I am kind of glad this happened. Now I can focus all of my love and devotion on the Lions.

6) Rams: It had to be particularly painful for the hometown faithful to watch Kurt Warner do to them what he used to do for them. Kind of like when your ex-wife screws you in the courtroom instead of the bedroom. Still though, the Rams are running in Misery Index molasses. Hard to dig your way out of the Misery Index hole once you pull off that two game winning streak. It is hard to win your fantasy league if you spent a high dollar draft pick on either S.Jax or Holt. And is still hard for me to look at the Rams shiny astro-turf without sunglasses on. Honestly, that rug is harder to look at than Marv Albert’s.

5) Chiefs: When you are at home, playing a team that is built to run, there is no way in hell you should lose a 21 point second half lead. Even if Herm Edwards is your coach, and half of the team isn’t old enough to remember Beavis and Butthead. Not sure why I just referenced Beavis and Butthead. I was thinking about Carl Peterson and Herm Edwards and it just came out. Hmm Hmm, yeah. He said came. Uh, huh huh. Came.

4) Broncos: Yeah, it seems odd to have a 4-4 team in this rancid rarified air, but this dreadful bunch of putrid ponies are 1-4 in their last five, and if not for a couple of fluke events earlier in the season, they could very well be 2-8. They certainly look like a 2-8 team. It seems hard to believe 5 weeks ago, the Broncos were 3-0, scoring 40 points a game. Fantasy players that drafted Cutler and Marshall were a lock for the fantasy playoffs. The Broncos were a lock to win the weakest division in football. Now they have been reduced to a tortoise v. tortoise race to the finish with the similarly pathetic and fragile Chargers for that elusive 7-9 division winning championship, and the ensuing first round ass kicking from a wildcard team from a real division.

3) Jaguars: NFL teams were having a party in Cincinnati, and the Jags showed up with a bottle of Hill and Hill and Bing Crosby records. Jack Del Rio is seemingly clueless about how to solve the problem. This is a team that even as recent as a few weeks ago some were touting as the dark horse in the AFC. Well, this loss proves they are not a dark horse. More of a decomposing horse.

2) Raiders: The Raiders played quite possibly the worst 60 minutes of “football” in the history of the sport on Sunday. I haven’t seen a scene as ugly as that since that time my wife asked me if those pants made her butt look big, and without thinking I answered her honestly. Right now, this is without question the worst team in the league, and possibly in league history. In the first half, Atlanta had 20 first downs. Oakland zero. I don’t recall if a pro team ever netted -2 yards of offense in a half of football before. Even the most dominant defenses in the history of the game didn’t shut down teams like this. Right now, at this moment in time, the Raiders are every bit as pathetic as the 1976 Buccaneers. Congrats Crazy Al. You have managed to set the sport back 30 years. Must be the clothes. And if last Sunday was any indication, you have also turned a bright young quarterback prospect into a pile of mush in less than two years. Bravo.

1) Lions: Bless their little hearts. They are actually still trying. Isn’t that cute. I found this weekend’s effort particularly amusing, as the Lions were my lone mistake on a sweet three team parlay. I would like to thank them for having the decency to botch that point after attempt, which at least enabled me to collect on my 10 point teaser. But come on guys. You can’t win. You keep covering the ridiculous spreads jackasses like me keep biting on, and worse yet we are now in the month of November which reminds me what a disappointment it is every season to have to watch your nauseating buffoonery on a full stomach of sleep inducing food come Turkey Day. I’m begging you NFL…stop the madness. Haven’t we suffered enough? Why are we being punished? I mean, I understand it when baseball misses opportunity after opportunity to put the best product in front of the most eyeballs. But for the NFL to continue this annual turkey day torture is as big a mystery to me as why people actually pay money to watch a Lions game in person.

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