Gratz’s Grumblings: Week 10

We’re getting to that sweet spot in the NFL season, Thanksgiving day football, coaches and coordinators dropping like flies, teams solidifying their playoff stature while others crumble. Whether your team falls in the former or latter category, it’s an interesting time of the season. Let’s take a look around the league, shall we?

Peyton Manning broke the record for most passing yards of all time, breaking Bret Favre’s previous record of 71,838. All smiles then right? Not hardly, Peyton struggled mightily thereafter, throwing four interceptions and getting benched for Brock Osweiler. What’s worse is that after the game it was revealed that Manning has a partially torn plantar fascia in his left foot. Oh, and the Broncos were annihilated, losing 29-13 to the Kansas City Chiefs (it was worse than the score indicates too). Peyton is definitely out this week against Chicago and will be re-evaluated after that. Despite having no allegiance to Denver, I’ve defended the Broncos all year and will continue to do so. Their defense is stacked but was without DeMarcus Ware and Aquib Talib, two of their best players. Assuming these guys get back on the field this will be a very tough defense to face as the year goes on, as defense becomes ever so important. Plus, Andy Reid after the bye is like Chick Fil A on Sundays, lights out. Concern for the Broncos is definitely legitimate however, their health is key and they have to get in an offensive rhythm when Peyton returns. In reality, this will probably come down to Peyton’s health and his effectiveness when he gets back on the field, whenever that may be. Brock Osweiler was a second round pick and only 24, who knows, maybe he can play?

Somehow, some way the Lions beat the Packers. This is less about the Lions winning and more about the Packers losing. The Packers have a laundry list of offensive woes: lack of a running game, poor line play, and Randall Cobb’s inability to step up the way he was expected to. It’s just uncharacteristic of them to go three and out the way they are doing so often. With the Vikings playing so well, the Packers may be fighting for a wild card spot this year instead of enjoying their typical first round bye.

Rex Ryan returned to New York to face his old team in an emotional Thursday night game. Ryan prevailed as the Bills beat the Jets 22-17. The Bills and Jets have very similar styles but the Bills were the more physical team and were able to force turnovers, giving them the advantage in a hard fought game.


Rob Ryan, on the other hand lost his defensive coordinator job as the hapless Saints defense allowed 47 points to Kirk Cousins and company. Yeah, that will do it. The Redskins are now 4-5 and right in the thick of the  pathetic, and I mean pathetic, NFC East race.

The Eagles are also 4-5 except they seem to be trending down instead of up as they endured a sickening loss to the Miami Dolphins who were just asking to lose the game. The Eagles are a mess, Sam Bradford wasn’t well protected at all and it cost them. Slammed to the ground in the third quarter he suffered a sprained shoulder on his non throwing arm while also coming away with concussion from the thud. Jason Kelce looks lost. Miles Austin and Riley Cooper combined for over 90 snaps while each failed to receive a single catch. Mark Sanchez threw an excruciating fourth quarter interception. Chip Kelly seems to be overmatched and this team is just simply not that good. They aren’t even fun to watch and Philadelphians are truly over this team, despite being alive in the division race. Can you blame them? It’s one of those “even if they win the division how far can they really go?” type of deals. I still want the Eagles to finish strong and make a playoff push because you never know what could happen, but for now one would be naive to have any real expectations for this middling, injured, uninspired group.

Bill Belichick is one of the best, (if not the best, coaches of this generation, but he always struggles with Tom Coughlin and the Giants and this Sunday was no exception. However, while trailing, Tom Brady in classic Tom Brady fashion drove the team down the field and set up Stephen Gostkowski for a cold blooded 54 yard game winner that took the life right out of Metlife Stadium. Unfortunately for the Pats, Julian Edelman suffered a leg injury and his return this season is in question which comes right after losing Dion Lewis for the year. The Patriots are known for overcoming these kinds of losses so while it is indeed a loss, history suggests they’ll be just find going forward. On the other hand, despite losing the game the Giants probably aren’t too disappointed. They almost knocked off the best team in the world and are still in first place in their division while getting a bye week to fix things up. Not saying they’re going to or should win the division but until another team consistently gets going, they should be relatively confident about their playoff chances.

The undefeated Bengals are now defeated, losing to the Houston Texans on Monday Night Football. Not necessarily a reason to abandon ship for the Bengals, every team has a hiccup at one point in the season or another. The Texans are now tied for first with the Indianapolis Colts who were on bye in the AFC South. The Colts have been disappointing all season so it’s actually pretty reasonable to expect this to be a real competition for the rest of the season, with the Texans having a legitimate shot to win the division.

Everyone knew the Arizona Cardinals were a good football team, but a lot of people were unsure if they were that good. The answer to that question is yes, yes they are as they secured a clutch win in one of the hardest places to play on earth, Seattle. The Cardinals look like they are the real deal and a real contender that’s built for the long haul, watch out.

Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown are the leagues best QB-WR combo and it’s scary. The Steelers beat the Browns and are 6-4 and currently stand in good position to compete for a playoff spot. In reality, with the ever unstable condition of their quarterback, it’s really week to week with this team.


Gratz’s Grumblings: Week 5

Well, that’s another week of NFL football in the books. Wing filled, beer soaked, fantasy obsessive, NFL football. While I have a rock hard boner for cold weathered, playoff football I get a little depressed as the number of football Sundays shrink at a Devonta Freeman like pace. Let’s check out what the fuck happened in week 5 around the NFL.

Jamal Charles tore his ACL and will be out for the season as the Chiefs suffered a deflating 1 point loss to the Bears. One of those things that just really fucking sucks. This is the second time Charles tore an ACL, this time in his right knee. Charles is currently 28 years old and everyone knows how hard it is for rushers to perform at a high level beyond that age without  a torn ACL. It may seem dramatic but it’s appropriate to wonder if Charles will ever be able to return to form and if he does, for how long? The Chiefs find themselves in a hole at 1-4 and their season may be over. Luckily, they still have a lot of talent on this team so I don’t think a severe overhaul would be necessary. Not to make excuses for them but their schedule has just been absolutely brutal, having already faced Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers, and the scorching hot Bengals. They still should have been able to best the Bears with or without their star rusher and a team with their expectations should have made their other losses a lot closer. Disappointing season? Yes. Still reasonable to expect them to be successful in the near future? Not so much.


Speaking of the scorching hot Bengals, they were about to be doused with a bucket of ice cold water, until they weren’t. They trailed Hawks 24-7 in the fourth quarter and rallied all the way back to give Mike Nugent the chance to clank one off the upright and get the W. It’s a big time win for the cats but an even bigger loss for the Seahawks. How did that happen? That’s just so crushing after an energizing, Kam Chancellor returning victory last week. At 2-3 they really cost themselves the luxury of future flukey fuck ups. However, they are a defense oriented team and if they can crack the postseason they will still be a threat to make it pretty damn far. Again, that’s if they can crack the postseason.

There is no excuse for the Ravens losing to the Browns. None. Even without Steve Smith Baltimore should have been able to win this game by at least a touchdown. Instead they’re 1-4 and in last place in the AFC North. Josh McCown had a historic 457 yard passing day. JOSH McCOWN. JOSH FUCKING McCOWN. I have no idea what’s wrong with the Ravens but honestly I don’t hate it. Saves us all the breath we’d waste debating Joe Flacco’s elite status, no matter what side you’re on.

The Patriots won. In other news Chick Fil A is scrumptious and Chris Christie is fat.

The Eagles. Chip Kelly is a bum! Chip Kelly is a genius! Fire Chip Kelly! Eagles are winning the NFC East! Honestly, nobody knows what the fuck the Eagles are about still and anybody who makes a prediction about their season is just wasting their time. The Eagles had a very nice win against the Saints but simply put the Saints suck. That’s no reason to be down or knock them, quite the opposite. Their defense is improving and can force turnovers. They almost hit 200 yards rushing in balanced attack amongst their three talented runners. Josh Huff FINALLY got into the action and caught his first NFL touchdown as he led the team in receiving. Sam Bradford has to get better, he threw two ugly red zone interceptions and those mistakes aren’t going to be as easy to recover from against better teams. Because the Eagles won by 22 points nobody seemed to care about how Caleb Sturgis ineptitude as a kicker as he missed another extra point. That kid better figure it out and fucking fast. With this team it’s a better idea to just take it week to week instead of calculating complex scenarios, just enjoy the ride and hope it doesn’t fall off the fucking tracks.


The Broncos are scaring everyone but I’m still not too concerned. Peyton Manning hasn’t lit it up like he used to but people aren’t realizing how good their defense is playing. They create turnovers, get to the quarterback and a better defense might be even more valuable than a prolific offense come playoff time. Peyton Manning stlll isn’t bad either and they still have talented receivers. They seem to be getting a lot of flack for a team who is undefeated, with more time to figure out this offense they can be a dangerous team if they can put it all together.

5 Year Old Tries To Wear Broncos Gear, Gets Rejected Hard By Teacher

So here’s the deal, elementary school in Washington has an event called ‘Blue Friday’ where the kiddies are supposed to wear their Seattle Seahawks gear. However, one five year old wanted to instead wear her Denver Broncos garb and thats when her teacher had to lay down the fucking law.

According to Fox 31 Denver, the teacher allowed all students to wear Seahawks colors on “Blue Friday”, but told the 5-year-old Broncos fan that if she didn’t change out of her Broncos dress and into Seahawks gear, she’d have to wear her school uniform. The school later issued a statement in opposition to the teacher’s actions, clarifying that students can wear the colors of whichever team they choose”.

This is exactly the kind of person we need leading America’s future right here. These little turds today are so entitled, having fucking Ipads at like 6 years old. Gotta teach em at a young age that rules are rules and if they don’t like them they can look like a damn outcast in front of their peers and wear the lame school uniform. The Broncos? They were embarrassed by the Seahawks in the Superbowl two years ago, teacher was trying to make sure this little bugger wasn’t ridiculed because we all know how ruthless kids can be amidst this bullying crisis, very honorable move. We’re lucky something like this didn’t happen in Philly. If it was “Green Friday” and some little shit wore a Cowboys jersey they’d be beat to a pulp and rightfully so. It’s just that if you let the Seahawks jersey slide then whats next? Allowing her to use Walmart coupons at Target on Black Friday? Getting fried nuggets at Chick Fil a even though the coupon says grilled nuggets? We should all be happy this has been put to an end and take a moment to appreciate such noble educators.

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Gratz’s Grumblings: Winners And Losers From Round 1

Round 1 of the NFL Draft is officially in the books and while Thursday night might have been a little, say, anticlimactic, it still gave NFL fans what they ultimately wanted: new players for their beloved professional football teams. As you know, not all drafts are created equal, with some fans rejoicing, and some feeling dejected as they prepare for another year of misery and shame. Well, Gratzfeed and their team of super analysts (me, Gratz) are here to break it down for yall. Let’s begin, shall we?


New York Jets: Leonard Williams- DT- USC

There seemed to be a universal consensus that Williams was the overall best player in this years draft. However, due to the importance and need for elite quarterbacks, along with other teams drafting for need, Williams saw his draft stock take a small tumble. Now he ends up in New York with hot new Head Coach Todd Bowles, a defensive oriented mind who will know how to utilize this Jets d-line. They say that Williams is more prone to shine in a 3-4 compared to a 4-3, which Bowles prefers to run, but I’m confident Bowles will figure out a way to make it all work. Additionally, the Jets are rumored to be entertaining trade rumors for Mohammed Wilkerson. Now, if they trade him, they will compensate with Williams, but if they keep him, they will have a monstrous d-line that will give opposing quarterbacks nightmares.


San Diego Chargers: Melvin Gordon- RB- Wisconsin

Interesting turn of events for the Chargers. Just a few days ago there were rumors that the team could deal their franchise QB Phillip Rivers (going into the last year of his contract), who appeared to be fed up with the teams lack of progress. Now, the team has apparently declared (you can never say never in this league though) that they will not trade the 30 year old and then traded up two spots and snagged Wisconsin stud Melvin Gordon. Running Back was an excruciating position for the Bolts last year as they finished 30th in rushing and lost their injury prone “starter” Ryan Matthews in free agency to the Eagles. Melvin Gordon is tall, shredded, and just a total bull and immediately fills a glaring need for the Chargers.

Denver Broncos- Shane Ray- DE- Missouri

Ray could have easily been a top ten pick this year. The problem was that just days before the draft he was caught with marijuana possession, which lets be honest is really fucking stupid if you’re about to get drafted and make millions of dollars. But, it happened and he was already being questioned because of a foot problem which still remains a little murky. Denver is the perfect landing spot for him though, not because pot’s legal, but because he’s going to a veteran team, with strong leadership that will take care of any off the field problems he has. Listen, if you have Peyton Manning on your team you’re not going to want to fuck up for some stupid shit. Also, he’ll have Demarcus Ware guiding him as well, who’s nearing the end of his career as well, showing him how the position is played and grooming him to eventually take the reigns. Ray could have been a riskier pick elsewhere, but with veteran leadership in Denver I think the Broncos took a high upside guy who has the opportunity to learn from some of the best.


Cincinnati Bengals: Cedric Ogbuehi- OT- Texas A&M

The Bengals have been notorious for early playoff exits, despite having a quarterback (who’s paid) like a superstar, and an actual bonafide superstar in AJ Green. Of course, it’s important to have offensive lineman to protect your stars, but the issue here is that Ogbuehi tore his ACL in December and is seen as more of a project. Why would you take a project if you’re trying to win now? They got bounced in the wild card round by the Colts, making you think they would look to add a difference maker who can immediately come in to contribute. They were also lacking a pass rush last year and with a lot of talented prospects falling, it would have been a good opportunity to take a risk on one of them. Ogbuehi could someday end up to be a fixture on the Bengals line but, given their roster, for this draft they should have been more focused on the now instead of the future.


St. Louis Rams: Todd Gurley- RB- Georgia

Listen, I don’t have anything against Todd Gurley, I think he’s an absolute stud and has the highest upside out of any running back in this years class. I don’t even mind that he’s another guy coming off an ACL injury either (I swear I don’t hate all injury picks). The problem with this one was how high the Rams took him and the multitude of other positions the Rams needed to fill. Who’s going to block for him? The Rams had one of the worst O-lines last year, throwing Gurley behind those dudes seems just cruel. The Rams might have even been able to trade down, stockpile some additional picks, and still grab Gurley. If they traded down and Gurley was scooped up by another team they could have still gotten a rusher, perhaps Melvin Gordon, or just draft one of the other positions they desperately need to improve on. I hope I’m wrong on this one, I hope he makes a full recovery and has an amazing career (he’s not going to be Adrian Peterson though) and bucks the trends of teams not drafting rushers high. But for now, I think the Rams could have filled more important needs.