Thursday, January 4, 2018

the wild card picks

"She's all laid up in bed,
With a broken heart.
And I'm drinking Jack,
All alone in my local bar.

(And we don't know how ...)

We got into
This mad situation;
Doing things only
Out of frustration.

(Trying to make it work,
But man -- these times are hard!)

She needs me now;
But I can't seem to find the time.
I've got a new job now,
On the unemployment line.

(And we don't know how ...)

We got into this mess --
Is this God's test?
Someone help us!
'Cause we're doing our best!

(Trying to make it work,
But man -- these times are hard!)

But we're gonna start by
Drinking old cheap bottles of wine!
(And stay) Sh*t talking up all night!
Saying things we haven't for a while!

We're smiling, but we're close to tears --
'Cause even after all these years?
We just now, got the feeling?  That we're meeting?
For the first time! ..."

-- "For The First Time" by The Script.

--------------------

Last Week SU: 12-4-0.
Final SU Record: 158-98-0.

Last Week ATS: 11-5-0.
Final ATS Record: 143-102-11.

(Let's just skip the Upset of the Week stats, ok?)

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The Non-Chiefs Predictions:

* "Shane" Falcons (+5 1/2) 31, at Rams 28 (OT).  I have flipped on this one at least fifteen times since I started typing this Tuesday morning.  At least fifteen times.  I honestly believe whoever wins this game, is going to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.  And to be further honest, the ONLY reason I think the Rams might win this thing is Son of Bum.  Wade's had two weeks to prepare for this.  He tends to embarrass teams when you give him extra time to prep.  In the end, I think Matt Ryan finds a way to pull this one out of his ass.  I just have no idea how.

* at Saints 48, Panthers (+8) 45 (OT).  This is going to be real, and it is going to be spectacular.  This is going to be the funnest game to watch that (probably) has no bearing on the Chiefs whatsoever in the postseason, since the 51-45 Cardinals win in overtime in 2009 over the Packers.  I don't think either team will be able to stop the other.  I cannot wait to watch this one.

* at Jaguars (-8) 24, Bills 14.  If Shady plays, I can be talked into the upset, or at least the cover.  One of the few conservative voices I actually like, Ben Shapiro, has this segment on his podcast called "Good Trump / Bad Trump -- Which One Will We Get Today!"  Doesn't the same apply to Blake Bortles?  "Good Blake / Bad Blake -- Which One Will We Get Today!"  I think we get mediocre Blake ... which is enough to beat anything but career-day Tyrod.  Which we ain't getting.

The Chiefs Prognostication:

(stevo shuffling the sermon notes)
("the congregation" getting restless)

Allow me to open, by once again quoting the single greatest, uuh, quote, I've read about the 2016 Chiefs so far, written by Seth Keysor at Arrowhead Pride to describe how he felt after the victory over the raiders four weeks ago:

"Backs to the wall, mouths bloodied, eyes blacked, but with head unbowed and fists raised ... the Chiefs now wait for the Chargers."

Just read that quote, and then, if possible, close your eyes, and envision the scene that one simple sentence evokes in your imagination.

And once you've done that, allow me to slightly bastardize a quote from my favorite political speech of my lifetime, Al Gore's acceptance speech at the 2000 Democrat National Convention:

"Let us lift up our eyes, and see just how far and wide the (Chiefs) horizon has become!"

Because Saturday, Chiefs fans?

Let's live the chorus, to the theme for this week's post.

--------------------

Sip on those cheap bottles of wine.

Stay up sh*t talking all night.

Say things -- talk to people -- you haven't, for a while.

Smile -- and laugh -- until you're close to tears.

And then realize, after all these years?

That Saturday?  Feels like you're doing this?

For the first time.

--------------------

If you're coming Sunday, please feel free to join me and my crew, in the grassy lot north of the G30 sign.  Look for a big red bus with a green roof -- that's us.  As always, anyone and everyone who desires to be a part of our group, will be welcomed with open arms and (if requested or offered) a frosty cold one.

Show up prepared to be what you are -- a fan"atic" of the Red and Gold.  Show up prepared to sacrifice your voice ... for the opportunity to do it again, in Foxboro or The Ketchup Bottle next week.

I have no idea what the tailgating menu is.  I have no idea who all is showing up (although I know it will be a large crowd, based on texts / emails / Messengers -- we're staring 30 plus in the face at this point).

I do know this: if you come out on Saturday?

Do me one favor.  (And I don't ask for much.)

Close your eyes, when you reach your seat.  Calm your persona down.

And then open your eyes.

And see how far and wide, the Chiefs horizon has become.

And realize, you're experiencing football all over again ...

... for the first time.

* at Chiefs (-9) 34, Titans 10.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

week seventeen: dealing with demons ...

"I'm a rolling thunder, a pouring rain;
I'm coming on like a hurricane!
My lightning's flashing across the sky;
You're only young, but you're gonna die!

Won't take no prisoners!  Won't spare no lives!
Nobody's putting up a fight!
I got my bell; I'm gonna take you to hell!
I'm gonna get you -- Satan!  Get you!

Hell's Bells!
Oh, Hell's Bells!
You got me ringing Hell's Bells!
My temperature's high -- Hell's Bells! ..."

-- "Hell's Bells" by AC/DC.  And no, Max Falkenstein, those aren't the bells of the Campanille that are ringing ...

--------------------

Last Week SU: 10-6-0.
Season to Date SU: 146-94-0.

Last Week ATS: 8-7-1.
Season to Date ATS: 132-97-11.

Last Week Upset / Week: you have got to be kitten me.
Season to Date Upset / Week: 6-12-0 SU; 8-8-2 ATS.
This Week's Upset / Week: Eagles (+3) over Cowboys.

--------------------

The "These Games Don't Impact the Chiefs" Predictions:

(Note: no "I'd rather watch a three hour marathon of this sh*tty sitcom than this game" designations this week.  Week Seventeen is the saddest week of them all.  Every game is watchable.)

* at Lions (-6 1/2) 31, Packers 21.  Buh bye Corpse Caldwell.
* at Patriots (-15) 41, Jets 3.  No special Jets section this week, but for the record, I'd have done what the Jets did, and kept both GM Mike Maccagnan and head coach Todd Bowles.  
* at Colts (-5) 24, Texans 14.  If Texans owner Bob McNair is stupid enough to side with the worthless Rick Smith (his GM) over Bill O'Brien, he deserves the five straight 3-13 campaigns headed his way.
* at Steelers (-7) 28, Browns 10.  Circle me curious as to what new Browns GM John Dorsey does.  Because in case you forgot, Dorsey didn't hire "Fat" Andy here in KC -- "Fat" Andy came first.  Dorsey has never hired (or fired) a head coach before.  This should be fascinating.  (I'd keep Hue, but then again, I would have hired Hue here five years ago, so what do I know.)
* Redskins (-5) 34, at Giants 3.  Please hire Jim Schwartz, Giants.  If only to see a full fledged riot in the swamps of North Jersey by despondent Giants fans.
* at Vikings 24, Bears (+11) 20.  Welcome to the Windy City, Bob Stoops.
* at Eagles (+3) 34, Cowboys 21.  The single biggest mistake in Jerry Jones' career would be bringing Jason Garrett back for a ninth failed attempt to win the Lombardi.  And I'm fully aware this is the man who gave Dave Campo three years, and thought Quincy Carter was a viable option under center.
* at "Shane" Falcons (-4) 31, Panthers 24.  As sh*tty as the AFC Wild Card round looks ... the NFC Wild Card round looks ... hang on, let me do this right.  The NFC Wild Card round?  (my buddy bunch voice) she's stacked!
* Saints 31, at Bucs (+6) 28.  Seriously, Tampa?  Dirk Koetter?  For Year Three?  If you had any fans, they'd riot before, during, and after this contest.
* at Seahawks (-9) 35, "Super" Cardinals 17.  Stevo Shock Prediction: both coaches in this contest "retire" on Monday morning, Tuesday morning at the latest.
* 49ers (-3 1/2) 35, at Rams 14.  The first of two straight (ravishing rick) rude awakenings for the year-too-soon Rams.

The "This Affects The AFC Playoffs But The Chiefs Can't Face Them" Best Guess:

* at "Super" Chargers (-8) 45, raiders 13.  Even if the "Super" Chargers get in (and I pray to God they don't), they can only reach the playoffs as the six seed.  (Note: the similarities between the 2013 "Super" Chargers and the 2017 "Super" Chargers frighten me -- right down to the fact they'd be favored on the road, as a six seed ... and probably win by double digits to boot.)  I've long believed the single hardest thing to do in football is beat a team three times in one year.  Thank God the Chiefs are locked into the four.

The "These Games Determine The Chiefs Wild Card Opponent" Best Wishes:

* Bills (-2 1/2) 27, at Dolphins 13.  From a Chiefs fan perspective -- and purely as a fan of the Red and Gold perspective -- the Bills are who I want strolling into Arrowhead next weekend.  I firmly believe they are by far and away the easiest of the three possible opponents to beat.  And yes, I am fully aware the Bills have already won at Arrowhead this year.  I don't care.  I just don't see this Bills team as capable of rolling into a truly fired up and filled up Arrowhead and being a viable threat to win.  I just don't.

* at Titans (-3) 31, Jaguars 24.  And from a "this is meant to be fun, and I mean damned fun!" perspective as a football fan, and as a season ticket member who's already been charged ticket and parking for next weekend (thanks Chiefs for the "Merry Christmas" gift on my MasterCard!), the Titans are who I want to face next weekend.  Because if the Titans are the opponent, at least six great friends will hike down from Sioux Falls for this one, as the Titans are Nicole's team, and she'll drag her family with her.  I really want the Titans from a fan's perspective.  (And from a Chiefs perspective -- do you really think Mike Mularkey can draw up a game winning, uuh, game plan, on five days notice?  Because I don't.  Especially considering he hasn't drawn up a winning game plan anywhere in a month.)

* Bengals (+9 1/2) 31, at Ravens 20.  And then there's the team I want no part of.  Do you realize the Ravens have NEVER lost at Arrowhead before?  It's a quirky stat, but it's true.  They won here in 2012 (the "Boo Cassel" Game), they won here in 2006, and they won here in the Wild Card game in 2010.

It seems like every year, some team that controls its' destiny sh*ts the best in an unimaginable manner as favorites.  I think the Ravens are this year's squad.  At least I hope they are.

Stevo's Projected Playoff Field:

AFC:
1. New England Patriots (13-3).
2. Pittsburgh Steelers (13-3).
3. Jacksonville Jaguars (10-6).
4. Kansas City Chiefs (stay tuned).
5. Tennessee Titans (9-7).
6. Buffalo Bills (9-7).

Just Missed: Baltimore Ravens (9-7); Los Angeles "Super" Chargers (9-7).  I believe I have read the tiebreakers right, should the glorious four-way clusterf*ck at 9-7 unfold.  Also, even if both the Chiefs and Jaguars wind up at 10-6, the Jags have clinched the tiebreaker via better conference record.

NFC:
1. Philadelphia Eagles (14-2).
2. Minnesota Vikings (13-3).
3. New Orleans Saints (12-4).
4. Los Angeles Rams (11-5).
5. Carolina Panthers (11-5).
6. Atlanta "Shane" Falcons (10-6).

Just Missed: Seattle Seahawks (10-6).  Atlanta wins tiebreaker via head to head victory last month, in Seattle to boot.

Stevo's Projected Wild Card Schedule:

Saturday, January 6, 3:30pm CT (ESPN / ABC): 6 Buffalo Bills at 3 Jacksonville Jaguars.
Saturday, January 6, 7:00pm CT (NBC): 6 Atlanta "Shane" Falcons at 3 New Orleans Saints.
Sunday, January 7, noon CT (CBS): 5 Tennessee Titans at 4 Kansas City Chiefs.
Sunday, January 7, 3:30pm CT (FOX): 5 Carolina Panthers at 4 Los Angeles Rams.

The only possible different scenario imaginable is that CBS grabs Bills / Jags instead of Titans / Chiefs.  NBC gets first pick, and they'll grab either Seattle or Atlanta at New Orleans.  FOX then gets the Rams by default, and the 3:30 Sunday slot by default (LA can't kick off at 10am local time).  CBS then gets its' pick of two dud matchups.  I think they'll opt for the optics of Arrowhead (and a proven fan base) over two upstarts ... but who knows.

And finally, for what will NOT be the final time this season ...

The Chiefs Prognostication:

* Chiefs (+4) 24, at those people 3.  

I could say a lot (and might later Sunday / Monday), but all I choose to say is this, to fans of the Red and Gold: don't overreact to anything you see on Sunday.

Good, bad, or ugly, it doesn't change reality.  And reality is that those people's season is over come 6pm MT Sunday ... and our season is just beginning.  Their QB situation is arguably the worst in football; ours is arguably in the top five (and about to get better).  Their head coach couldn't outcoach a corpse; ours is about to prove that playing the second string against those people's "finest", will result in a new round of stink for derek wolfe to b*tch about.

And all I can suggest to mr. wolfe, is that he hold his nose.  Because those people?  Are now the "Homer's Bucket Inside the Tailgating Tent" of the AFC West, if not the entire conference.  And will be for the very foreseeable future.

Stench never smelled so fine ... 

Saturday, December 23, 2017

week 16: ready to feel the joy ...

"Joy to the world!
The Lord is come!
Let earth?
Receive her King!

Let every heart,
Prepare Him room!
And heaven and nature sing!
And heaven and nature sing!
And heaven, and heaven,
And nature sing! ..."

-- "Joy To The World".

--------------------

Last Week SU: 12-4-0.
Season to Date SU: 136-88-0.

Last Week ATS: 7-6-3.
Season to Date ATS: 124-89-11.

Last Week Upset / Week: the one that mattered hit.
Season to Date Upset / Week: 6-11-0 SU; 8-8-1 ATS.
This Week's Upset / Week: raiders (+9) over Eagles.

The Non-Chiefs, Non-Jets Predictions:

* at Ravens 17, Colts (+13 1/2) 14.  "Gordon Shumway Game O' The Week" honors.
* at Packers (+9) 24, Vikings 14.
* Lions (-4) 38, at Bengals 10.
* at Titans (+7) 27, Rams 24.
* at Bears 2, Browns (+6) 0.  "Good Times Game O' The Week" honors.
* at Panthers (-10) 35, Buccaneers 14.
* at Saints (-7) 31, "Shane" Falcons 13.
* at Redskins (-3 1/2) 23, those people 14.  "Webster Game O' The Week" honors.
* at Patriots 34, Bills (+11) 27.
* Jaguars (-4) 41, at 49ers 13.
* at "Super" Cardinals (-4) 13, Giants 6.  "Empty Nest Game O' The Week" honors.
* at Cowboys (-5) 34, Seahawks 21.
* Steelers (-9) 38, at Texans 13.  "Designing Women Game O' The Week" honors.
* raiders (+9) 34, at Eagles 21.

The "Klassy" Kevin Keitzman Tweet O' The Week:

In the spirit of the season, I'll give him a pass.

The Watching Party Plans:

There are no The Watching Party Plans, as this is a Chiefs game I will be in attendance for.

The Tailgating Plans:

As of now, we are keeping things simple: burgers and dogs, assorted side dishes, and as many warm beverages as possible.  I have to admit, I am not ready for the cold, and I am not ready for snow.  The first arrives tonight here in KC; the second arrives Sunday morning. 

We will have the tents set up, and heaters going, ASAFP on Sunday morning.  Because nobody, and I mean NOBODY, hates the cold more than me.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I'm ready to move somewhere, where the idea of putting a shirt ON when getting out of bed in the morning, seems like the most ridiculous idea of all time.

If you need a place to tailgate, a bite to eat, a beer to drink, or just a place to duck in and warm up for a few minutes, as always, anyone who wishes to join in the fun, tomfoolery, and hijinks, is welcome to join us.

"Disreputable Mexican Food Truck" Update:

I got nothing.

The Jets Best Guess:

I don't got much.

* "Super" Chargers (-7) 31, at Jets 20.

The Chiefs Prognostication:

As for my pick ... here's the dilemma.

The Chiefs have been favored by at least ten points at two different times this year.  And they lost both games outright, to the Giants and the Jets.  

The Chiefs opened as a ten point favorite (it's down to eight at last check) this week.  So that worries me.  

Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler has lost exactly once to the Chiefs in his career.  He went 3-1 for those people, and was 1-0 with the Bears.  That concerns me.

Adam Gase, the Dolphins head coach, has had tremendous success against the Chiefs -- he's 7-0 in his career as the offensive coordinator for those people and the Bears against us.  That terrifies me.

And there's history -- the Chiefs have never won back to back division titles before.  They've won three in five years ... but never back to back.

(That one really terrifies me, because every other team in the division entering the 2000 season has won at least three in a row of their current division, since the 2000 season began.  Yes, even the raiders.)

Throw in a flu bug apparently going around One Arrowhead Drive, and the makings are there for a terrifying upset that derails everything Week Seventeen should be about.  (Namely, tears streaming down my face due to either (a) Patrick Mahomes "Of The Chiefs" making his debut, or (b) a fan or three of those people beating the f*ck out of me.  Oh fake mile high, never stop being you!)

But I honestly think the forecast (snow Saturday night / Sunday morning, barely freezing by kickoff), coupled with a boozed-up, hopefully fired-up crowd ducking (as I am) as many family get-togethers as possible, will deliver the win against a team used to playing in a sauna at kickoff.

To say nothing of the fact that a Chiefs win officially eliminates the raiders from playoff consideration.  I trust "Fat" Andy will stress that in the pregame speech.  Because when you have a chance to bury your hated rival?  Don't f*ck up the opportunity.

* at Chiefs (-8) 48, Dolphins 13.  If you're coming out?  Do your job.  It's colder outside right now here in KC (I am typing this on Friday night -- it's currently 31 degrees and cloudy with little to no wind), than it will be at kickoff on Sunday (supposed to be mid 30s, sunny, with little to no wind).  Show up, stand, and witness something no Chiefs fan ever has before -- a second straight division title.

And then get ready for a day we've waited for, for literally a generation, next Sunday: a Chiefs drafted quarterback winning a start for this franchise.  It will be merely the first of many, many wins, for Patrick Mahomes ...

Thursday, December 14, 2017

week 15: (real world voice) stuff starts getting real ...

“Silent night.  Holy night.
All is calm.  All is bright.
Round yon virgin, mother and Child.
Holy Infant, so tender and mild.
Sleep in heavenly peace.
Sleep in heavenly peace …”


--------------------

Last Week SU: 10-6-0.
Season to Date SU: 124-84-0.

Last Week ATS: 12-4-0.
Season to Date ATS: 117-83-8.

Last Week Upset / Week: finally.
Season to Date Upset / Week: 5-10-0 SU; 7-7-1 ATS.
This Week’s Upset / Week: It’s a Two for Thursday!  Browns (+7) over Ravens, and yeah, we’re going there, in about seven pages.  (damien voice) Wait, he wouldn’t honestly take the Jets to win in N’Awlins, would he?  (pause.)  Oh sh*t!  Oh sh*t!  He believes!  He believes!  We’re gonna win!  We’re gonna win!  (stevo voice) Dude!  Shut up already!  Don’t give away the ending before I even get done with the beginning!

The Non-Jets, Non-Chiefs Predictions:

* those people (-2 ½) 17, at Colts 13.  “Empty Nest Game O’ The Week” honors.
* at Lions (-5 ½) 34, Bears 16.  The Lions are going to steal the six seed when it’s all said and done.
* Eagles 24, at Giants (+7 ½) 20.  Another year, a different NFC East champ.
* at Panthers 27, Packers (+6) 24.  For the record, I’d start Hundley.
* Dolphins (NL) 24, at Bills 14.  A de-facto playoff game.  Who saw this one coming?
* “Super” Cardinals (+4 ½) 17, at Redskins 13.  “Good Times Game O’ The Week” honors.
* at Vikings (-10 ½) 34, Bengals 14.  “Webster Game O’ The Week” honors.
* at Jaguars (-11 ½) 30, Texans 13.  “ALF Game O’ The Week” honors.
* at Browns (+7) 20, Ravens 10.  The AFC Clusterf*ck for the two wild cards is going to be glorious.
* Rams (+2 ½) 31, at Seahawks 20.  Winner probably takes the NFC West; the loser is in big trouble.
* Patriots (-3) 34, at Steelers 27.  Can’t wait to watch this one, although I’ll have the next game on the Sunday Ticket main TV, since it matters to the Chiefs more.
* at 49ers (-2) 17, Titans 13.  Again, the AFC Clusterf*ck at 9-7 (if not 8-8! * ) for the two wild cards is going to be real, and spectacular.
* at raiders (+3) 34, Cowboys 24.  They’re not dead yet folks.  Especially if they win out.  
* “Shane” Falcons (-6) 31, at Bucs 24.  The “Shane” Falcons better win this one -- if they do, they control their destiny (last two being vs Saints / vs Panthers).

(*: the best ever had to be 1999, when not one, but two NFC Wild Card teams got in at 8-8 (Lions, Cowboys), while Carolina and Green Bay had to score as many points as possible, as yes, the (then fourth, now) seventh tiebreaker -- net point differential in conference games -- would have been in play, had the Cowboys lost.  In case you’ve forgotten why you so f*cking love this sport, PLEASE CLICK ON THIS CLIP, sit back, and enjoy the hell out of football at its’ best!  Also, God bless it, I miss “NFL PrimeTime”.)

The “Klassy” Kevin Keitzman Tweet O’ The Week:


I ask this with all due sincerity -- which god awful Nelly song ** do you think Ol’ Klassy relates to more: “EI” or “Hot In Herre”?  Do you think he prefers … hell, let’s make this the Stevo’s Site Numero Dos’ Poll Question O’ The Week!

Which lyrical line from a Nelly hit does “Klassy” Kev’ relate to better:

a. “If the head right?  Nelly there, e’ry night!” -- “EI”
b. “It’s getting hot in here, so take off all your clothes!” -- “Hot in Herre”

I lean (a) … allegedly, of course.  Because this is all an alleged exercise in attempted humor at Ol’ Keitz’ expense.  Allegedly.

(**: “EI” is not a crappy song.  It is a spectacular song that will always be on Mixology for as long as I’m running it.  (Pause).  Which won’t be Saturday (hopefully).  As always, keep reading.)

The Watching Party Plans:

There are no The Watching Party Plans, although we will have the Sunday Ticket going on, uuh, Sunday, at the Second Parents place.  God bless DirecTV, giving away the Sunday Ticket for free for the last four weeks.  Because even I balked at paying over $300 / year for what, six Sundays of television viewing.  Thanks for remembering those of us who cancelled due to attending 10-12 games a year, guys.  You’re still the best!  (And for once, that isn’t sarcasm; I love having DirecTV back in my life for the first time in a few years.)

The Tailgating Plans:

If it’s the Chargers, we’re doing Chargers Chicken.  Which -- stunner! -- is what we’re doing.  We’ll have plenty of varieties of chicken available, along with various side items, desserts, and adult beverages.

Also -- and the plan was for this to start last week, but due to technical difficulties it didn’t -- I am ceding the Mixology portion of tailgating to a trained professional, in this case, my buddy Tyler, who DJ’s on the side on the weekend.  Hopefully this goes as planned, because honestly, (almost) 41 year old dudes should not be programming the musical rotation.  I’m too old to know quality modern stuff (save for the Chainsmokers; I like them!)

In any event, The Bus departs around 1pm; if you need a ride out, hop on board.  If you need a place to tailgate, you’re always welcome to join us.  And if you just feel like getting your buzz on before the biggest regular season game the Chiefs have played in three years … well, you can do worse than counting on a collection of functional alcoholics, to meet your buzz needs.

“Disreputable Mexican Food Truck” Update:

Again, nothing to report.  It’s WEEK FOUR of the freaking water main fix on North Broadway.  I mean, good God KCMO Works Department -- how long does it take to replace a damned pipe when it’s been above freezing for all but about 24 hours in those four weeks?

The Jets Best Guess:

If Christian Hackenberg does not start at least one of these last three games, Todd Bowles should be fired.

Which, in Mr. Bowles’ defense, he probably will be anyways, but still.  Josh McCown is out.  Bryce Petty’s arm is worse than mine on my best day.  It’s time to see what Ol’ Christian has in him.  

Or more realistically, doesn’t.

* at Saints (-16) 41, Jets 13.

The Chiefs Prognostication:

(Very, very, very deep breath …)

(Clearing the throat …)

You know what?  Before I start saying what I want to say, there’s only one proper way to open this:



OK, let’s begin.

--------------------

For the record, I believe that if this 2017 Chiefs season is what it has played out as, there is only one possible outcome on Saturday night, and that is a tie.

Think about it.  How PERFECT would, say, a 23-23 tie be?

It would resolve nothing.  It would cause a new round of panic amongst most of the fanbase.  It would probably occur because of a brain-fart clock decision, or play call decision, or inexcusable penalty that yet again costs this team a very winnable game.

And yet it would still somehow, someway, leave the Chiefs in complete and total control of their own fate, irregardless of what anyone else does.  It would still leave the Chiefs exactly where a win would put them: with a magic number of one, to win the West.  Sh*t, if anything, it might actually put the three seed back into play, depending on what the Jags and Titans do down the stretch (the Jags have vs Texans / at 49ers / at Titans; the Titans have at 49ers / vs Rams / vs Jaguars), as a tie only counts as half a defeat, and a 9-6-1 Chiefs squad would be seeded higher than a 9-7 AFC South champion.  (Note: this won’t matter; the Jags aren’t losing to Houston, which would be win ten.  But it is interesting to contemplate.)

This game just seems destined to end in a tie.  

But, since I try (and for once this season, I mostly succeed!) to pick the winner of each game, I have to pick an outcome here where one team outscores the other.

And that team?

--------------------

If you’re coming Saturday, be loud.  Be DAMNED loud!  Be so f*cking loud the late, great RCW will be screaming down from Heaven above to “shut up already”!  Pound that seat in front of you!  Stand on every critical third down, and let the Chiefense know you got ‘em!  Don’t boo the expected -- if Sir Alex misses an obvious read and checks down four minutes into the game, it’s OK.  Believe he’ll make up for it in the third quarter.

If there is anything this season has shown us, it is that the Chiefs will have the ball, in the fourth quarter, probably inside of three minutes, in a one score game either way.  It’s happened damned near every week.  The only two games it hasn’t happened were two blowout Chiefs victories -- the Eagles Week Two, the raiders last week.

Trust the coaching staff.  These guys are pretty good, folks.  “Fat” Andy hasn’t won 170 plus games by sheer luck; at some point, skill is involved.  (Note: I make this argument to somehow attempt to explain how I manage to hold down a job for significant chunks of time, and have never been fired from a job before (I have been laid off a couple times).  At some point, it isn’t dumb luck.  At some point, you have to acknowledge I just might know my sh*t when it comes to reinsurance.)

Remember 1995 when you begin to doubt.  The Chargers had first and goal at the Chiefs 4, two minute warning, up four.  The Chiefs won in overtime on my single favorite play of all time, Tamarick Vanover’s punt return to trigger what is without question the single loudest moment in Arrowhead’s history.  Remember 2006.  Lawrence Tynes nails it from 48 to upset the 6-0 Chargers … only to have a bullsh*t motion penalty called.  The retry from 53?  Even more golden than the attempt from 48.  Remember 2010.  “Tuesday Morning Football”.  Remember 2011.  “The Phumble”.

Remember 2015.  Dee Ford somehow, someway knocking that 4th and goal pass down to clinch (arguably) the most miraculous playoff berth in franchise history.

Or just remember last year against these guys, the greatest comeback in franchise history.

But most importantly -- trust yourselves.  Trust us, the fans.  Trust us to make the difference.  And then do your part to make the, uuh, difference.

(Or to put it more directly, do NOT be silent, on Saturday night.)

The team I pick to win?

(stevo sighing in disgust voice) Take a mother f*cking guess.

* at Chiefs (+1 ½) 29, Chargers 23 (OT).

Also, apologies again on the ridiculous formatting. I got it to work if you are reading this via a web browser on a computer screen. I know it's still effed up on a mobile device. I'm trying to fix it. For 894 previous posts, not one issue. Now, it's effed up. I swear, it's always something ...

the wild card picks

"She's all laid up in bed, With a broken heart. And I'm drinking Jack, All alone in my local bar. (And we don't know h...