Random Shots - Week 16
by Joe Bryant
December 19th, 2012

Hi Folks,

We do a lot of really insightful, thoughtful and serious features here at Footballguys with some very smart people thinking deeply for you. This is not one of those features.

This is a few pages of me downloading my goofy and dysfunctional mental hard drive that gets stuffed with way too many random items from too many hours watching, reading about and listening to football every weekend and throughout the week. It's the only way I keep relatively sane. Here's hoping it has a tiny bit of value for you. Let's go.

Kansas City, Dallas, Newtown. How about we stop there for a while?

I didn't feel competent finding opening words for the Kansas City and Dallas situations and I don't stand a chance of doing the folks in Newtown justice. So I'll offer a few pictures.

This makes me think about what Brady Quinn said a few weeks ago. "When you ask someone how they're doing, do you really mean it? When you answer someone back, are you really telling the truth? We live in a society of social networks, and Twitter pages and Facebook, and that's fine. But we have contact with our work associates, our families and friends, and it seems sometimes that we're more preoccupied with our phones than the relationships going on in front of us."

Word.

Whether you like our President or not, his speech in Newtown is worth listening to.

I wouldn't be surprised if this isn't popular with some folks but I'm in agreement with the President that "enough is enough". It's my hope and prayer that we as a country can come together in a respectful and thoughtful dialog as we deal with this issue. It's a complex problem with multiple components but I agree with this James Atwood article where he advocates a renewed ban on assault weapons. I don't believe the benefits of allowing citizens to possess guns capable of rapid firing 150 rounds designed for military combat outweigh the negatives. The second thing I would like to see is enforcement of the instant background check that is often skirted at gun shows. Mental Health Resources and School Security are certainly components to address as well. If you haven't read it yet, the article entitled I Am Adam Lanza's Mother is a scary and heartbreaking read. But it's not going away. I honestly have more questions than answers. But I know we need to do everything possible to prevent events like what we saw in Connecticut. And I hope we as a nation can come together in a respectful discussion. This isn't about Washington. Or the NRA. Or the Conservatives or the Liberals. This is about us. It's about me and you. And how we move from here makes a difference.

I don't say this lightly. And I realize I may have fewer readers after sharing my heart on this and being honest with you.

It would be nice if I could cut to a commercial break here...

But this is Random Shots. And we don't have commercials. So I'll talk about the goofy stuff I saw related (barely) to Football over the last couple of days. Thanks.

If you're a Buffalo Fan, here's the story for the game Sunday:

Then

Then

God Bless you Guys.

Sorry if I'm a little distracted today. Can't get my mind off that San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl coming Thursday...

How about some Holiday Music?

We won't leave anyone out as we cover all the Holiday bases. First a Run DMC - Charlie Brown mashup of Christmas in Hollis.

Next up is Adam Sandler with the classic Hanukkah song.

Elvis sings my favorite Christmas song.

And if you've ever wondered if the King was as cool as everyone thought he was, this should settle it.

And one last song for you Star Wars Fans...

Lastly, one of my favorite Sports Illustrated covers from a few years back featuring Belichick Santa.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Footballguys.

OK, back to football. Or at least back to whatever it is that we do here each week.

Baltimore didn't have a first down until after 2 pm Sunday. Firing the offensive coordinator appears to have solved all their problems...

How about San Francisco's Ray McDonald with a helmetless sack of Tom Brady?

Here's something I don't get. It's my understanding that mouth pieces help a great deal in preventing concussions. With all the focus on player safety, why aren't mouth pieces mandatory? Seems like a no brainer to me.

While we're at it, maybe ushers should have to wear them too.

And belts too.

Is it me, or have we seen way more mooning this year than normal?

Arizona scored a touchdown. That's big news. They went on to score 38 points crushing Detroit.

Cardinal fans were happy.

Some days I think I know nothing about this game.

For all the great things Russell Wilson has done this year, his timing sucks. He picks a year with two of the most hyped rookie QBs in recent memory. In any other season, Wilson would be grabbing headlines with his play and his style. Although I bet he's just as content with quietly piling up the wins. I'm really anxious to see what this team does at the next stage.

Shout out to my Buddy and Footballguy Jeremy Johnson who is the biggest Bears fan I know. Which these days means he might be the most tortured fan I know. He's keeping the faith through thick and thin. And this week gave me an early Christmas present.

You can buy one here if you like. Cool thing as $5 of every purchase goes towards the Charles Tillman Cornerstone Foundation providing opportunities and resources to children and their families who are in need.

Buffalo may be down. But Stevie Styles can still get up. Crazy good catch.

Here's what it's come to for Eagles fans. Their own guys are blocking their punts...

New England lost at home Sunday night for the first time in December in 10 years. Wow.

The Patriots turned the ball over four times Sunday night. They entered the game with a total of 10 turnovers for the season.

SI.com's Peter King had some great insights as usual in his Monday Morning QB column. Gregg Williams and Sean Payton were both hit with tough sanctions after the New Orleans Bounty issue. Payton will return as the pretty girl at the dance as teams will likely pay in the neighborhood of 8 million per year for his services. Williams, however, may never work in the NFL again. Interesting.

Minnesota's Adrian Peterson with a SWEET Sports Illustrated cover:

Interesting note from the Bengals - Eagles game. Adrian Peterson had more rushing yards than all the Bengals and the Eagles. Combined. That's scary.

Here's where we are with Peterson and why we need to pay attention and not get complacent with the greatness we're witnessing: Peterson "just" needs 294 yard over the next two games to break the record. We're living in a time when he "just" needs to average 147 rushing yards for the next couple of weeks. You think he'll get the record? I'm pulling for him.

ESPN commentator Rob Parker had this on Robert Griffin III last week: "We've heard a couple of times now of a black guy kind of distancing himself away from black people ... I've talked to some people down in Washington D.C., friends of mine, who are around and at some of the press conferences, people I've known for a long time. But my question, which is just a straight honest question: 'Is he a brother, or is he a cornball brother?' ... He's black, he kind of does his thing, but he's not really down with the cause, he's not one of us. He's kind of black, but he's not really the guy you'd really want to hang out with ... I keep hearing these things. We all know he has a white fiancée. There was all this talk about he's a Republican, which, there's no information [about that] at all."

I'm going to go out on a limb and call that ungood.

I posted the picture of Minnesota punter Chris Kluwe last week as he had the "Vote Ray Guy" tape pasted over the Hall of Fame patch on his jersey. Not surprisingly, the NFL was not amused and Kluwe was fined $5,250. First off. Where do they come up with the number $5,250? Secondly, Kluwe responded with a classic line on his Twitter Feed: "My favorite part of the fine email from the NFL - they end it with 'sincerely.' It's the little touches that let you know they care."

Seattle coach Pete Carroll caught heat for running a fake punt on with his team up 47-17. I'm not a fan of rubbing a score in but cut Carroll some slack here. Most special team call are made by the coordinator or a player on the field, not the head coach. They have a set play in place to run if they see a formation in the defense. In this case, the Bills left the middle of the line wide open and that triggered the automatic call. Carroll could have made the adjustment and told the special teams coordinator to switch out of their normal mode if the situation arose but had failed to that.

"I feel bad about this," Carroll said after the game. "It was part of our game plan. It was something I could have called off and didn't."

Peter King writes "As The Seattle Times explains, Seattle had seen potential holes in Buffalo's punt coverage leading up to Sunday's game. The coaching staff installed a fake punt option that could be audibled into by safety Chris Maragos. When Maragos saw Buffalo was in the vulnerable formation, he called for the fake and handed it off to the fullback, Robinson. It worked to perfection, except for the fact that it was completely unnecessary."

"I should have stopped it in the sense that it looked bad," Carroll said after the game.

There are legitimate things to get after a coach for. This isn't one. Relax.

Knocking out a Professional Wrestling note AND a People Are Awesome story in one fell swoop here. Connor Michalek is a 7 year old brain cancer survivor and his wish was to meet his all-time favorite WWE wrestler, Daniel Bryan. Conner not only met his hero, but he was able to put the wrestler into his own signature "no lock" position.

Bryan was cool after the meeting. "It kinda brings a tear to my eye to know somebody like Connor wants to meet somebody like me, so that's kinda cool," said Bryan.

More info and a great video here.

That's awesome.

Knowshon Moreno is the AFC Offensive Player of the Week. Yeah, we totally saw that coming in August...

My favorite gif of the week is also my favorite line of the week. Moreno hurdled Baltimore's Ed Reed.

Then Reed said his excuse was that he had the flu. "I couldn't react because I was dealing with a lot of sickness early in the game. I just wasn't all the way into it, honestly. I was dealing with flu symptoms and everything. I just kind of watched him jump over me."

Oh Ed...

Pushing your coach is rarely a good idea. Pushing your coach when he's Bryan Cox is never a good idea.

Love the line from my friend Michael Fabiano of the NFL Network: "Ryan Mathews has more broken clavicles than touchdowns this year." I only wish he wasn't serious. And correct.

Here's where the Bears are at. Quarterback Jay Cutler was sacked by a two man pass rush to end the game. Two guys.

Coach Belichick was not happy.

Nor was Coach Coughlin.

But Jerry was so it all sort of evens out.

And I've got no idea what's going on with Joe Vitt here.

Thanks to Footballguy Lance Gilliland for that one.

Titans LB Zach Brown with a (maybe) unintended shot at Mark Sanchez after the game: "I feel like they had a good offensive line and a good running back, so for us, we knew we had to stop the run. We knew that if we could do that and then make the quarterback make mistakes, we win the game. That's what we did."

Trent Dilfer's been my favorite analyst for a while now. If / when Jon Gruden decides to coach again, I'd love to see Dilfer move to that spot. He was fired up Monday night with Steve Young stressing how much it hurt him to see the quarterback situation in New York. "We've played this position. He (pointing to Young) played it at a Hall of Fame level. I played it."

Dilfer has the knowledge, experience and critical eye that makes a game more enjoyable. Not many people can do that.

Some people ask me how Random Shots is created. Here's how. I'm watching the NFL Films "Top 10 Left Handed Quarterbacks" (this is how much I love you guys) and Mark Brunell comes up. I watch for a second and remember Brunell's days and then (sadly) the primary thing I come away with is "Dude looks just like Mark Wahlberg."

Tell me I'm not right.

Brunell

Wahlberg

I told you the other day about the Fountains of Wayne song "All Kinds Of Time" in one of my favorite NFL Network Commercials.

I was able to pull the Aikman image off for you. It's one of my favorite NFL images.

It was an interesting scene in Oakland with a pigeon on the field. Raider fans know there's more to the story as it has ties to former Raider Marquis Cooper who was killed in an accident almost two years ago. The coliseum sound system blared Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Free Bird" as they tried to round up the bird.

Things are different in Oakland.

Thanks to Footballguy Brad Schuelke for that one.

Robert Griffin III has the highest selling jersey in a single season. I'm guessing this sign will prove true for a lot of folks this year.

Nice.

Basketball note. Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim was a freshman player 50 years ago.

This week he won his 900th game.

Tampa Bay running back Doug Martin continues the Onesie Craze this week. From Martin's Twitter feed:

It's the time of year for Christmas movies. And everyone knows you can't do much better than Elf. Although this Saints fan did.

Here's why you never ever trust offensive linemen. San Francisco's Alex Boone was flagged for illegal hands to the face and this was his response.

Unfortunately for Boone, the games are televised and this was the replay of the play in question.

College football note. I caught a game this week featuring Eastern Washington. ESPN radio star Colin Cowherd is an alumni. I'd heard about the red field but did not know the home uniforms featured solid red pants, red jerseys and red helmets that blend in perfectly with the turf. I bet that's a nightmare for opposing offenses trying to throw to deep receivers when the defensive backs blend into the scenery.

Nice.

Music note. I went old school and super popular last week with Weezer. Hitting more towards the other end of the spectrum this week with a band you probably haven't heard of call Yung Life.

I'll admit this is one of my favorite shirts.

But that's not why I like these guys. I like them because they're young guys with a cool 80's mellow sound that was popular before some of them were born. And they happen to be really talented at doing what they do. If you're looking for something to chill with, these guys are awesome.

A sampling for you would be "I Am You", "Breaker" and my favorite, "Isn't This".

God Bless young musicians making fun music.

Hard Luck Awards for Week 15.

And the Nullified TDs.

  • SEA RB Leon Washington punt return for 86 yards, TOUCHDOWN NULLIFIED by Penalty.
  • JAC QB Chad Henne pass deep left to WR Justin Blackmon for 20 yards, TOUCHDOWN NULLIFIED by Penalty.
  • CHI QB Jay Cutler pass short right to WR Alshon Jeffery for 1 yard, TOUCHDOWN NULLIFIED by Penalty.
  • HOU RB Arian Foster left tackle for 27 yards, TOUCHDOWN NULLIFIED by Penalty.
  • NE QB Tom Brady pass deep right to WR Brandon Lloyd for 22 yards, TOUCHDOWN NULLIFIED by Penalty.

Sometimes it's better to just not know...

That'll do it for this week, Folks. Thanks to Footballguy Doug Drinen for the help on this one. If you've got a Random Shot of your own, shoot me an e-mail at bryant@footballguys.com.

Thanks for playing along. I hope you have a ball with whatever you're doing in your life. Love your neighbor and stick together.

J

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