NFL Week 1 Preview - This is the Worst September 11th Ever



It's been a long time, y'all. I've missed you dear friends a great deal and it feels great to be back. Life has been crazy since we last spoke. There have been so many cries for help between now and then you'd think I was a 40 year old linebacker left penniless and skill-less to fend for myself in a world that wants nothing to do with me. Last year Matt Cassel and Brandon Weeden broke my spirit, but time heals all wounds. I'm ready to dive into this worthless sport for idiots full-bore. My excitement is at an all time high. 

BRONCOS 21 - PANTHERS 20

And there is goes. All my excitement crushed just like that. Roger Goodell and I are two peas in a pod because I too find player safety extremely important; that's why another grown man at the peak of physical conditioning slamming his helmet into yours offsets you failing to throw the ball a couple yards further out of bounds before having your brain shaken free of childhood memories like an etch a sketch. 

BROWNS @ EAGLES

Now that the sobering reality of the NFL has hit me like a helmet to the cerebrum, I have to either come to terms with my fandom, or stare my hypocrisy dead in the face and continue to preach about how disgusting the product is while wearing knockoff jerseys (made by the finest tiny Chinese boy fingers) bearing the misspelled name of a player who will kill himself before the final Avengers movie. 

What better way to gaze into that cracked mirror of self loathing than to take a gander at whatever the fuck the Browns are trotting out and masquerading as a professional football team? One of these teams traded all of their non-white assets to draft a quarterback who accidentally locked himself in a gas station bathroom. The other team has been accused of tanking the season before taking a regular season snap. Imagine being RG3, going into the downward spiral he did, and then thinking “yeah, Cleveland is a good place to turn it all around.” Hope you enjoy throwing to Terrelle Pryor and an asshole with fake dog ears while taking 40 sacks, dick.

Meanwhile Carson Wentz is so bad he was almost going to red shirt his entire rookie season because the challenge of beating out Sam Bradford and Chase Daniel was a task too daunting. I see a lot of Wentz in myself. It may not be Exxon, but I’ve found myself locked in a closet before. I didn’t find a red badge of courage in there to bring my longtime “roommate” to Thanksgiving, much less a red shirt.


BUCCANEERS @ FALCONS

Bucs and Falcons is a time honored rivalry; one rich with tradition. The tradition of spending April telling yourself you’d suck a dick on Sesame Street to watch pad-less practice just to get a taste of football, but now that the season is finally here you look at this game and decide to leave it on in the background while doing something more important like vacuuming or edging. The only way I will conjure up any excitement for this game is if it comes down to a Tampa Bay game winning field goal. Picture it: all the Bucs fans at home in their swamp frog infested nightmare city standing in front of their black and white TV that's stacked on top of another broken TV. A stadium filled halfway to the brim with rabid fans in Vick jerseys psyching out Roberto Aguayo while the PA blares an Outkast song and Arthur Blank stands on the sidelines in his corduroy suit with his arms crossed and his lip raised in a permanet sneer like an ethnic just coughed near him. Will he split the uprights? Will he shank it? Who cares, neither of these teams are getting within 6 wins of Carolina.       

Seriously though, what the fuck is a Dirk Koetter?


VIKINGS @ TITANS

Yikes.

The best part of watching Redzone all day is knowing this game will end 6-3 and I won’t see any of it. Sam Bradford won’t start, because the Vikings organization as a whole is still suffering extreme PTSD from that time they signed Josh Freeman, started him 2 weeks later, and he played so badly it ruined his career and got the entire coaching staff fired. That leaves you with Shaun Hill. 

Again, yikes.

So you know what? Fuck it. Run the wishbone. Put that 40 year old career backup on the field with Adrian Peterson, McKinnon, and whatever linebacker can serve as a fullback. Sure that type of offense has no place in the NFL and fullback hasn’t been a real position for 15 years, but can you honestly name 3 defensive starters for the Titans? All I got was the other McCourty brother and the re-assembled bones of Brian Osackpo held together by painter’s tape and Jerry Lawler’s singlet. Who’s to say who is really playing for them? For all I know it’s just a bunch of kids wearing their big brothers’ hand-me-downs. What’s the harm in giving Adrian Peterson 57 carries and letting him straight disrespect that entire franchise? If there’s one thing I know about AP, it’s that when he’s going mano a mano against a kid he just flips a switch. 


BENGALS @ JETS



On second thought, maybe I’m not as excited for football as I thought. 

I thoroughly enjoy that no matter how good the Jets' defense is, it will never be enough to compensate for the trash bag they start at QB year in and year out. Fans spent the entire offseason clutching prayer beads and bargaining with whatever deity continues to shit all over them in hopes that they could sign Ryan Fucking Fitzmagic. Chad Pennington could jog out to the field in warm up pants, an old Pro Bowl jersey, and a shitload of compression sleeves and instantly give the Jets a better chance of winning. 

I hate the Bengals. They are the NFL embodiment of my anxiety. Every day of my life is a melancholy haze. I sleep when the Sun’s up and stay up all night staring at the same four walls, making the days interchangeable and indistinguishable. Days turn to months, months turn to years, and life keeps slipping by with no positive step. The Bengals will always have Marvin Lewis, they’ll never win a playoff game, and Burfict will always be a piece of shit. That whole god damned city is a nightmare. At least that gorilla had the balls to go out there and get himself murked. Meanwhile I always pussy out and when I send out drunk texts saying I'm finally going to do it all I get is “new phone who dis."


RAIDERS @ SAINTS

This is bullshit. I’ve been on the Raiders bandwagon longer than any of these johnny come latelies. I’ve been saying this is their year since Al Davis’ corpse was still being controlled with marionette strings to select the fastest blackest person like some insane old white plantation owner at a slave trade. Other GMs use the draft to strengthen roster, add depth, and develop for the future. He used it to put together the most devastating special teams this millenia. I spent 6 straight Maddens trading CJ Spiller to the Raiders and racking up 4000 all purpose yards between him and Jacoby Ford. Now they get a shiny new QB and receiver and suddenly they’re everyone’s sleeper pick. Fuck that. I stand with Al, and his memorial flame will burn bright as it engulfs the bag of dog shit he would have left on Goodell's porch.
 

CHARGERS @ CHIEFS

The long national nightmare is over. The Chargers finally came to an agreement with Joey Bosa and inked him to a contract, ensuring he can play out of position for 5 years and ruin his career. Dean Spanos spent month after month refusing to budge over something as petty as offset language because he's a cheapskate fuck, but a year from now he'll be begging for money to relocate the team and build a new stadium. 

Not that any of that matters. Joey Bosa could be 5 Lawrence Taylors and it wouldn't make a difference because the Chargers have the worst injury luck I've ever seen. Some teams are snakebitten, but their roster gets riddled with season ending injuries with such frequency that at some point a higher up at NFL corporate offices has to consider investigating foul play. How in the fuck do they have 12 players on IR before the season even starts? Travis Benjamin is going to come up limping and Rivers is going to have to march down the field by throwing bombs to Josh Cribbs wearing a set of those little bitty wheels they put on two legged dogs. 


BILLS @ RAVENS

Every single year is supposedly the Bills' year. They're finally going to put everything together with an overdrafted skill position player and an overpaid quarterback and they're going to unseat the Patriots. And then they suck, because they always suck. Even this year with Brady missing 4 games. This is the best shot they'll have for the rest of the decade and by week 8 they'll be mathematically eliminated and the Bills Mafia will be getting day drunk off rumham and throwing themselves through tables. You see when I was a kid I called that ECW. Now instead of a fat guy bouncing checks, its EJ Manuel bouncing errant passes off the bleachers once Tyrod gets the crown of a helmet to his kneecap courtesy of whatever wayward spirit is inhabiting Terrell Suggs' dusty old bones this season. 


BEARS @ TEXANS

On the one hand it's going to be awesoe watching bears fans wallow in abject misery at the Bears being the worst team in football. Unfortunately a month from now they'll all just take off their reversible Forte jerseys and turn it inside out and rock the Patrick Kane look until he's accused of raping someone else. The Bears will have all of the offensive explosiveness of the 85 team without the defense or good white people. I'm not saying they're gonna replicate the game Jimmy Clausen started last year where they punted on every single possession, but I'm saying JJ Watt has spent all Summer slow jerking to blue lives matter and r/redpill and he is going to explode all over Jay Cutler's doofy face in front of God and everyone. 


PACKERS @ JAGUARS

The Jaguars are the popular pick to shock the world and dethrone the Colts. The lowly Jags have assembled a team of scrappy underdogs and are poised to scratch and claw their way to 5 wins. They're like the Mighty Ducks if they were dogshit and lost by 40 in the big game. The only flying V here is the chance of me losing my flying V card flying out the window as I celebrate my 26th birthday and inch closer to wizard status. Gordon Bombay got caught driving drunk and coached a team to victory, Justin Blackmon got caught driving drunk and disappeared into the boonies of Oklahoma never to be seen again. 


DOLPHINS @ SEAHAWKS

This is the year, right? This is the year Ryan Tannehill comes into his own. He's a young quarterback whose had a bumpy, young caree-wait what? This is his fifth season? 

Oh.

Well, all aboard the Deshaun Watson hype train.

Miami is where veterans go to headbutt their wives in the twilight of their career. The Dolphins aren't a franchise, they're the Patriots' scout team. If a marginally good receiver has a 2 touchdown game, Bill Belichick sends a raven to their facility the next morning to circle until his contract is up. Justin Hunter will end the season with 400 yards, get traded to New England, score a combined 6 touchdowns in the 2 games against Miami, and then get cut before the divisional round so they can re-sign Aaron Dobson. 


LIONS @ COLTS

The team guaranteed to finish first holding down their home turf against the team guaranteed to fnish third. I know what you're thinking: third place? Beneath the Vikings? I'm not saying Sam Bradford is better than Matt Stafford, I'm just saying Detroit is so miserable they made 2 all time greats retire early because they sucked the life out of them.

It's a new season, which means yet again you'll sit grab a bud, a Budweiser, some za, sit in front of the TV, and howl with laughter when you remember that Jim Caldwell is their coach. I don't wish any ill will on the Colts. I like Andrew Luck, I like Parks and Rec, and I laugh every time the camera finds the one black guy in the stands. That being said, I want them to lose terribly and for the Lions to carry Caldwell off the field. Imagine the players jumping up and down, screaming and celebrating, as Jim looks unblinking into the void of infinite time, seeing the nukes go off and the world turning to ash in his hands. 


STEELERS @ REDSKINS

The best part of the Redskins having the NFC East gift wrapped for them is knowing they'll lose to a Steelers team missing half of their team due to weed by 3 touchdowns with the entire country watching. My obsession with the NFC East is bordering on dangerous, and it's sending me into an existential crisis onto whether or not I like the NFL itself or I just love the shenanigans that come with these four shitass teams. No joke: I am being 100% dead ass serious when I say I'm more excited to see Kirk Cousins throw 4 picks because he crumbles under pressure while the country spams YOU LIKE THAT than I am to watch Dak Prescott's first start. I enjoy watching other teams' misery more than my own team's success. I am a broken person and clownball is the one thing keeping Humpty Dumpty together. 


RAMS @ 49ERS

Jesus Christ, if this isn't a monkey's paw of a game then I don't know what is. You're ready for some football, are ya? Well fuck you, here's Chris Berman yelling at you at 2 am while shitty west coast teams play bad football. Are you a real fan? Yeah you are. Pussy. I don't care if you have work in the morning. You're going to watch Blaine Gabbert and Case Keenum interspersed with Draft Kings commercials until you fucking die. 

I swear to God until I sat down to write this I had no idea that not only was Case Keenum on a roster, but that he was starting a professional football game. Apparently Jared Goff is so bad that he's inactive. The first overall pick, acquired for an RG3-esque bounty, isn't good enough to take the clipboard out of Sean Mannion's hands. I don't know what a Mannion is and I pray to God I don't find out any time soon.

Chris Berman is going to sermonize for 3 god damned hours about the national anthem. I don't care what Boomer has to say about this. I don't care what he has to say about anything. I don't even care about Kaepernick has to say anymore. I want to be inside the mind of Chip Kelly right now. He gets signed by Philly and trades every single black person away, making up gang affiliations for players along the way. He gets run out of town and gets signed to a team with the whitest quarterback imaginable. The only way Blaine could be whiter is if he was a marine named Spencer-Fi who loves wakeboarding, The Lumineers, and telling you about Trayvon Martin's criminal background. Just when things were finally starting to look Millhouse for big bad Chip, a black quarterback refuses to stand for the anthem and talks shit about cops. 

If Chip Kelly has a worst case scenarios it's this, with getting trapped in an elevator at a very close second. Well take the stairs, dick, because now you can't cut the guy who looks like he's literally deflated since last year and forgotten how to play football. I hope the Philly media wasn't too distracting, because now you've got army veterans screaming at you because opposing police brutality is somehow equal to not respecting the military. 

But you're sick of it. I'm sick of it. We're all sick of it. I wish we could get back to football and just play the game. The monkey's finger curls, and so does Carlos Hyde's femur. 


PATRIOTS @ CARDINALS

It crushes me to my core to see Palmer reverting back to Bad Palmer. Watching him bomb it deep in Bruce Arians' insane coaching style was a top 3 favorite thing for me last season. I guess it doesn't matter too much how poorly he plays because this game should be hilarious no matter what. The Patriots' O-line is a disaster, they don't have Gronk, and the Cardinals are just gonna blitz a million defensive backs at Jimmy G's face. His perfect, gorgeous face. 

It'll be hilarious when Graps outplays Brady for 4 games and then there's a QB controversy. Man how funny would that be? If a backup took the reigns week 1 and by the time the incumbent starter was ready to take his team back questions arose over whether or not it was even his team anymore? That would be hilarious, right?


GIANTS @ COWBOYS

Oh god dammit.

I've bought the hype. I'm ready for the Dak Attack. I'm ready because it's all I can do. It's all I have. Without football I am nothing. I have a hole in my heart and only touchdowns can fill it. From March to August I am a soulless husk floating through monotonous days with no reason to get up but no courage to stay asleep forever. But once September hits, I have a purpose. I have a reason to exist. If that means telling myself Dak Prescott is the future of the franchise then so be it. Why not him? Did you see how he played against second stringers playing vanilla defense? He can't be contained and he won't be overwhelmed.

Three hours after kickoff I will be sitting lurched over in my chair. I will be the king of despair atop a throne of empty Shiner bottles and pizza boxes. I will stare straight ahead as the harsh reality of 5-11 pours of my motionless vessel like a losing Super Bowl player sitting on the bench, head in hands, in a downpour of confetti. I'll tell myself I'm numb to it, but it stings every time. My life would improve in every aspect if I de-invested myself in this dumb sport for idiots, but their vicarious success is the closest I'll ever come to achieving something resembling a dream. But it will always be a nightmare. The night terrors will never stop, and the only saving grace if this whole Dak thing doesn't work out is Mark fucking Sanchez. 

Being a Cowboys fan isn't an exercise in nostalgia and burying my head in the sand, it's living a game show week in and week out. No matter how hard I try, or how optimistic I get, or how good the team looks, I go into every preseason with my hand over the buzzer whispering to myself "no whammy, no whammy, no wha-FUCKING FUCK"






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