Thursday, April 18, 2013

initial reaction to 2013 nfl schedule

"Some dreams?  Stay with you forever.
Drag you around, to bring you back to where you were.
Some dreams?  Keep on getting better.
You gotta keep believing,
If you wanna know for sure ...

Oh!  I can hear them playing!
I can hear the ringing of a beat up old guitar!
Oh!  I can hear them singing --
Keep on dreaming, even if it breaks your heart!

Oh!  I can hear them playing!
I can hear the ringing of a beat up old guitar!
Oh!  I can hear them singing --
Keep on dreaming, even if it breaks your heart!
Keep on dreaming, even if it breaks your heart!!!"

-- "Even If It Breaks Your Heart" by the Eli Young Band.  Yes, THAT Eli Young Band.  (Pause).  Hey, we beat denver that day.  Yo, John Dorsey -- get these guys locked up NOW to have a gig come 11:56am on December 1st ...

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From the NFL scheduling gods, to my nimble fingers.  My analysis of the 2013 NFL schedule, for the two teams I passionately love (the Chiefs, the Jets) ... the twenty eight teams I couldn't give a rat's ass about ... and the two teams I really intensely dislike.

Week One:

* Chiefs: at Jaguars (noon, CBS).  A very, very winnable opener for a new era.
* Jets: vs Buccaneers (noon, FOX).  A very, very winnable opener for the last year of the current era.
* Best Game On The Board: Packers at 49ers (3:25pm, FOX).  Second straight year these bitter rivals have opened the season against each other.  And while I'm at it, mad shoutout to the folks who run the US Open, for moving the men's final back to Monday night.  Good job guys!  Some of us hate having to pick between a Federer / Nadal / Murray final, and the best game on FOX's slate for the day.
* Worst Game On The Board: Dolphins at Browns (noon, CBS).  Nobody will be watching this one.  Nobody.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Seahawks at Panthers (noon, FOX).  Could have huge wildcard tie-breaker potential come late December.
* Overall Thoughts: both my teams draw very winnable openers, and both teams I despise face stiff competition to open their season -- the My Little Ponies host the defending champion Ravens (7:30pm Thurs, NBC), and the raiders travel to Indy (noon, CBS).  Combined with the Chargers having to open against the Texans (9:15pm Mon, ESPN), the Chiefs could be alone atop the division one week in.

Just like in 2010.

Week Two:

* Chiefs: vs Cowboys (noon, FOX).  Ooh.  Ooh.  Ooh!  Huge, hu-yuge early measuring stick game.  Hu-yuge.
* Jets: at Patriots (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Might as well get the 45-3 woodshed beating over with early.
* Best Game On The Board: (tie) unicorns at Giants (3:25pm, CBS); 49ers at Seahawks (7:30pm, NBC).  Can a kid dream?  Can the denver f*cking broncos open 0 and 2?  Winner of 49ers / Seahawks gets an early edge in what should be football's best divisional race.
* Worst Game On The Board: Jaguars at raiders (3:25pm, CBS).  Noone will be watching this matchup.  Noone.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Redskins at Packers (noon, FOX).  Could have huge home-field advantage ramifications come late December.
* Overall Thoughts: Solid slate of games again.  Good job, NFL scheduling gods!

Week Three:

* Chiefs: at Eagles (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Ooh.  Ooh.  Ooh!  Have to admit, I'm a little disappointed -- yes, I nailed this in my dream schedule, but I wanted this in December, so "Fat" Andy Reid would have to duck some snowballs.  I guess the D cell batteries will have to do.
* Jets: vs Bills (3:25pm, CBS).  A 2-1 start would be sweet.
* Best Game On The Board: Texans at Ravens (noon, CBS).  Really guys?  You slot the Jets in the national late slot, and relegate this one to regional action?  What a disgrace.
* Worst Game On The Board: raiders at donkeys (7:30 Mon, ESPN).  Monday changes nothing.  That was a tragedy.  An attack like that at fake mile high during this game?  Is cause for a national celebration.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Lions at Redskins (noon, FOX).  Could have some potential wildcard tie breaker ramifications come late December, if the Lions rebound.
* Overall Thoughts: When a game involving bitter rivals that despise each other is the "worst" matchup on the board?  The board is rock solid.  Seriously -- the raiders / broncos game is the worst one on the board.  Great week of football awaits us!

Week Four:

* Chiefs: vs Giants (noon, FOX).  What the hell did Channel 5 do, to not get to broadcast a home game until mid-October?  Hire that dingbat Michele Bachmann's brother as their second line weather broadcaster?  (Pause).  Oh.  Wait.  They did.  Moving along ...
* Jets: at Titans (3:05pm, CBS).  CBS isn't even trying to compete with FOX on this day -- this is the only late game for them.
* Best Game On The Board: Seahawks at Texans (noon, FOX).  There's a damned good chance this won't be their only matchup this season, when it's all said and done.
* Worst Game On The Board: Dolphins at Saints (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Who did ESPN piss off to get this sh*tfest?  Who in God's name is going to watch this garbage when baseball enters its final three game stretch run on this night?
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Eagles at satan's team (3:25pm, FOX).  A very intriguing game.  Very intriguing.  Dare a kid dream -- can the My Little Ponies open 1-3 or worse?
* Overall Thoughts: Another solid week with next to no duds on it.  Someone earned a bonus this year at wherever the hell NFL Headquarters is on Madison Avenue.

Week Five:

* Chiefs: at Titans (noon, CBS).  An interesting matchup.  Another good gauge game for how the rebuild has progressed.
* Jets: at Falcons (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Good God.  This is two prime-time slaughters in five weeks.
* Best Game On The Board: Texans at 49ers (7:30pm, NBC).  Like the prior Sunday, this might not be the only time the Texans face this team this season.
* Worst Game On The Board: Bills at Browns (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  This might be the worst nationally televised game of the season, if not of the entire decade.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: asses at Cowboys (3:25pm, CBS).  It's not sneaky, and it's not under the radar, but it'll be good.  And come on -- even the Bible refers to a donkey as an "ass", so don't send me the "stop swearing so much" response, mom.
* Overall Thoughts: I'd pencil the Chiefs in at 3-2 at worst, ditto the Jets.  I can live with that.

Week Six:

* Chiefs: vs raiders (noon, CBS).  The raiders have won six straight at Arrowhead.  Six.  That is not a typo. And the prior four (all Chiefs wins)?  Last second end zone interception (2006, W 13-9); LJ TD as time expired (2005, W 27-23); Tynes FG as time expired (2004, W 30-27); Anderson FG as time expired (2003, W 27-24).  Yikes.
* Jets: vs Steelers (noon, CBS).  Should be ugly early.
* Best Game On The Board: Giants at Bears (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Makes up for last week's sh*tfest.
* Worst Game On The Board: Lions at Browns (noon, FOX).  Putrid!
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Packers at Ravens (noon, FOX).  I'd have put this in the national stand alone slot instead of Saints at Patriots (3:25pm, FOX), but that's just me.
* Overall Thoughts: the start of the homestand that will make or break the season for the Chiefs -- three straight games, two of which we'll be favored in, the middle one possibly being the difference between a wildcard berth, or yet another near miss.

Week Seven:

* Chiefs: vs Texans (noon, CBS).  The Chiefs should be 4-2 at worst entering this.  If they emerge from this game with five or more wins, denver's got some competition for the division.
* Jets: vs Patriots (noon, CBS).  Oh dear Jesus, are you kidding me?  At Falcons / Vs Steelers / Vs Patriots?  Really?  No, really?
* Best Game On The Board: peytons at Colts (7:30pm, NBC).  On this Sunday, we're ALL Colts fans.
* Worst Game On The Board: Bills at Dolphins (noon, CBS).  Also known as "Friends and Family Day" at whatever the hell the stadium formerly known as Joe Robbie is known by nowadays.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Seahawks at Cardinals (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Major, major trap game for the Seahawks, who have another major, major trap divisional road game in prime time up next week too.
* Overall Thoughts: other than December 1st, there is no home game I am anticipating more, than this one for the Chiefs.

Week Eight:

* Chiefs: vs Browns (noon, CBS).  You know, you just know, Criqui and Buerelein are drawing this assignment.  Thank God I'll be there and won't have to listen.
* Jets: at Bengals (noon, CBS).  No, really -- At Falcons / Vs Steelers / Vs Patriots / at Bengals?  Are you f*cking kidding me?
* Best Game On The Board: Redskins at mythical animals (3:25pm, FOX).  You don't think shanarat will be geeked up for this one, do you?
* Worst Game On The Board: Browns at Chiefs.  There will be PLENTY of good seats available for this one.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Seahawks at Rams (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Two straight tricky divisional roadies in prime time.  The 49ers appreciate that, that's for sure.
* Overall Thoughts: last home game until late November.  That sucks.

Week Nine:

* Chiefs: at Bills (noon, CBS).  A trip to the Ralph, our House of Horrors.  Just what we needed, entering the bye week.
* Jets: vs Saints (noon, FOX).  Oh come on!  This is just ridiculous at this point!
* Best Game On The Board: Bears at Packers (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Always great when football's oldest rivalry renews the hate.
* Worst Game On The Board: Bengals at Dolphins (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Will not be tuned in for even a second of the (lack of) action.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Vikings at Dallas (noon, FOX).  Could have major wildcard ramifications come late December.
* Overall Thoughts: Colts at Texans is the Sunday nighter; Steelers at Patriots is the stand alone national game, and neither got mentioned.  THAT'S a solid week of games!

Week Ten:

* Chiefs: bye.  6-3 at worst.
* Jets: bye.  3-6 at best.
* Best Game On The Board: Redskins at Vikings (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Should have major playoff implications for both squads.
* Worst Game On The Board: Dolphins at Bucs (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  This game will have no major playoff implications for either squad, since neither squad is sniffing the postseason.  Sniffing glue, maybe.  But not the postseason.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Bengals at Ravens (noon, CBS).  Only one game separated these two playoff squads last year.
* Overall Thoughts: I love the late bye week.

Week Eleven:

* Chiefs: at broncos (3:05pm, CBS).  The English language has yet to invent a word, that accurately conveys how much I hate the denver broncos.
* Jets: at Bills (noon, CBS).  Jets always lose at the Ralph.  Always.
* Best Game On The Board: Packers at Giants (7:30pm, NBC).  Great matchup that will not be flexed out, that's for sure.
* Worst Game On The Board: raiders at Texans (noon, CBS).  The NFL record for most points scored in a game by one team is 73.  It's in jeopardy.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Vikings at Seahawks (3:25pm, FOX).  Winner's in, loser's out?
* Overall Thoughts: if the pattern of win / lose / win / lose at fake mile high continues, the Chiefs are winning this game.

Week Twelve:

* Chiefs: vs Chargers (noon, CBS).  I miss Norval Eugene Turner already.
* Jets: at Ravens (noon, CBS).  In the words of the great Jerry Lawler: "that's it, they're dead!"
* Best Game On The Board: barrel man's bunch at Patriots (7:30pm, NBC).  On this Sunday night, we are ALL Patriots fans.
* Worst Game On The Board: Titans at raiders (4:05pm, CBS).  Gee, watch this, or Giants / Cowboys in the late slot.  Let me think ...
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: 49ers at Redskins (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Great Monday Night matchup.  Possibly the best on the schedule all season.
* Overall Thoughts: 3pm-ish, walking up the ramp at Gate H: "beat the donkeys!  beat the donkeys!"  And so it is on ...

Week Thirteen:

* Chiefs: vs donkeys (noon, CBS).  The Day I Live For.
* Jets: vs Dolphins (noon, CBS).  Only intrigue is who's coaching the Jets at this point -- has Sexy Rexy been fired already?
* Best Game On The Board: Patriots at Texans (3:25pm, CBS).  Potential AFC Title Game preview?
* Worst Game On The Board: Jaguars at Browns (noon, CBS).  Will either squad have a win yet?
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: broncos at Chiefs.  This is as close to "must win" as it gets, if the Chiefs intend to still have a season underway when I turn 37, 33 days after this game is staged.
* Overall Thoughts: If hating the denver broncos is wrong?  Then please, dear Lord, never let me be right.

Week Fourteen:

* Chiefs: at Redskins (noon, CBS).  True story: when the Redskins played here back in 1992, some Indians protested, given the two teams' nicknames.  I swear to God, one of the Indian protestors ... was wearing a Fighting Illini jacket.  * cough hypocrite cough *
* Jets: vs raiders (noon, CBS).  Will Our Lord and Risen Savior, the Man Who Can Walk on Water, Heal the Blind, Help the Sick, the Great Timothy R. Tebow, start this game?
* Best Game On The Board: Seahawks at 49ers (3:25pm, FOX).  Could decide the NFC West and home field advantage throughout the postseason ... which Seattle needs far more than the 49ers do.
* Worst Game On The Board: raiders at Jets.  Not even I'll be tuned into that one.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Lions at Eagles (noon, FOX).  Both teams have the talent to be at 7-5 entering this one.
* Overall Thoughts: one of two games I do not expect the Chiefs to be even remotely competitive in (along with the trip to fake mile high).

Week Fifteen:

* Chiefs: at raiders (3:05pm, CBS).  Chiefs have won 9 of 11 by the Bay.
* Jets: at Panthers (noon, CBS).  Panthers should be at 7 or 8 wins entering this; could be significant for their playoff hopes.
* Best Game On The Board: Packers at Cowboys (3:25pm, FOX).  Yes, please.
* Worst Game On The Board: Chargers at broncos (7:30pm Thurs, NFLN).  Again, a friendly PSA reminder: the NFL record for most points scored in a game by one team, is 73.  Unless there's a hard snow a'fallin, that record is in jeopardy in this contest.  The Chargers are gonna be atrocious.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Patriots at Dolphins (noon, CBS).  Pats always struggle in South Florida.
* Overall Thoughts: I have the Chiefs at 9-5 8-5 (losses at Philly, vs Giants, vs Texans, at broncos, at Redskins) entering this one.  I see denver at either 9 or 10 wins, hinging on the Ravens opener.  (I think they're gonna lose it and be at 9, but we'll see -- that's still 5 months away.)  Sets up one helluva stretch run for the right to blow out the Bengals and then get pummeled at Reliant!!!

Week Sixteen:

* Chiefs: vs Colts (noon, CBS).  Both teams figure to be in the 9-10 win range ... needless to say, both teams need this.  Badly.
* Jets: vs Browns (noon, CBS).  Oh my God.  This might -- might -- be the ugliest game in franchise history.  First team to not fumble a snap by running into his center's ass wins?
* Best Game On The Board: broncos at Texans (noon, CBS).  Major, major scoreboard watching at Arrowhead and Reliant on this final Sunday before Christmas.
* Worst Game On The Board: Browns at Jets.  I mean, who in God's name is going to even show up to watch this?  Would you pay to watch garbage like this?  I wouldn't.  It's gonna be 22 degrees, with eight inches of snow on the ground, before the biggest holiday week of the year.  Would you show up to watch this crap?
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Falcons at 49ers (7:30pm Mon, ESPN).  Both title games get rematches in the next to last week of the season, except at the team who won's stadium this time.  (Ravens host Patriots on Sunday Night).  Great way to close out the guaranteed prime time slate.

Week Seventeen:

* Chiefs: at Chargers (3:25pm, CBS).  God forbid we ever close a freaking season at home.
* Jets: at Dolphins (noon, CBS).  If 5,600 people show up, I'll be stunned.
* Best Game On The Board: Packers at Bears (noon, FOX).  Either this or Redskins at Giants (noon, FOX), is getting flexed onto NBC.
* Worst Game On The Board: all of them.  Because this is the last week of the season.
* Sneaky Under The Radar Game: Ravens at Bengals (noon, CBS).  Winner takes the AFC Norris Division?
* Overall Thoughts: I am not a fan of Roger Goodell, at all ... but making the final week of the season all divisional games, is without question -- (allard baird voice) without question! -- the single smartest thing he's done as commish.

140 days to Kickoff 2013!!!  (kazoo voice) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Coming manana -- my NBA playoff preview extravaganza that I've been working on all week.  Just fine tuning it.  My projected Eastern Conference champ won't surprise anyone.  My projected Western Conference champ, well ... let's just say, when Flip Saunders and I are in total lockstep agreement with all four conference finalists, as well as who is winning the West, I am scared to death.  That guy isn't all there either ...

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