Saturday, October 4, 2014

week five: tomorrow trumps ...

“I know it’s not my fault;
I did my best.
God knows this heart of mine?
Could use a rest!

But more and more I find?
The dreams I left behind?
Are somehow too real,
To replace …

Oh, last night?  I didn’t
Get to sleep at all – no, no, no!
The sleeping pill I took?
Was just a waste of time.

I couldn’t close my eyes,
‘Cause you were on my mind.

And last night?
I didn’t get to sleep,
I didn’t get to sleep,
No, I didn’t get to sleep at all! …”


Last Week ATS: 7-5-1.
Season to Date ATS: 28-32-1.

Last Week SU: 7-6-0.
Season to Date SU: 35-26-0.

Last Week “Screw You Pete King” Upset / Week: perfection.
Season to Date Upset / Week ATS: 2-2-0.
Season to Date Upset / Week SU: 2-2-0.
This Week’s “Screw You Pete King” Upset / Week: Jets (+6 1/2) over Chargers.

As always, all lines below brought to you via USA Today from Stevo’s Site Numero Dos’ Official Oddsmaker, Danny Sullivan.  Danny Sullivan: cursing my name for mentioning him since 1991!!!!!


Gotta be honest folks, this one probably isn’t gonna be great.  Here’s how my sleeping pattern (and sports pattern) went this last week:

Sunday: went to sleep about 1am.
Monday: woke up about 7am.  PTO Day.  Chiefs 41, Patriots 14.  Went to bed a little after 2am.
Tuesday: woke up about 7am.  PTO Day.  Royals 9, A’s 8 (12) -- the single greatest sporting event I've ever been privileged enough to attend.  Did not ever go to sleep.
Wednesday: worked a full day.  Had coworkers commenting that "you aren't moving around too well there, Stevo.  Tired?"  Fell asleep watching Giants / Pirates game around 7:30pm.
Thursday: woke up about 4am.  Worked ten hours.  Royals 3, Angels 2 (11).  Went to bed about 2am.
Friday: woke up at 6am.  Worked nine hours.  Royals 4, Angels 1 (11).  Went to bed about 3am.
Saturday: woke up at 9am.  Day.  Of.  Rest.  And.  Recovery.

For the first time in my life I can recall?

Football is not my sports focus, on the first weekend in October.  And that’s a damned good thing …


The Non-Jets, Non-Chiefs Fling Its:

* Byes: Snowflakes, raiders.  A fond farewell to "drunk" dennis allen, fired as the raiders head coach after another Bob Knight Memorial "You Might As Well Relax And Enjoy It" Defeat overseas.  In honor of "drunk" denny, here's the list of illustrious leaders who have led the "just win baby!" silver and black, since the return to oakland twenty years ago:

1995: mike white (8-8-0).  Opened 8-2.  #justwinbaby

1996: mike white (7-9-0).  Never better than .500.  white fired (15-17-0).

1997: joe bugle (4-12-0).  Chet McGlockton openly lobbies Marty during the game, to sign him in the offseason.  Sadly, we did.  bugle fired (4-12-0).

1998: jon gruden (8-8-0).  Uh oh.

2000: jon gruden (12-4-0).  Lost AFC Title Game.

2001: jon gruden (10-6-0).  The Tuck Rule Game.  gruden traded to Tampa (38-26-0 regular season; 2-2-0 postseason).

2002: "sur" william callahan (11-5-0).  Lost Super Bowl.

2003: "sur" william callahan (4-12-0).  "sur" william calls his team "the dumbest team in America".  "sur" william fired (15-17-0 regular season; 2-1-0 postseason).  This is the last time I will have to designate between "regular" and "post" season records.

2004: norval eugene turner (5-11-0).  Improvement!

2005: norval eugene turner (4-12-0).  norval fired (9-23-0).

2006: art shell (2-14-0).  Lost first five, and last nine.  shell poop canned (2-14-0).

2007: lane kiffin (4-12-0).  Lost ten of last twelve.

2008: lane kiffin (1-3-0); tom cable (3-9-0).  The infamous Al Davis Presser that was so epically awesome, I'm capitalizing a man once (correctly) described to his face by Carl Peterson as "all class.  Except without the c, and without the l".  kiffin (5-15-0) gonezo.

2009: tom cable (5-11-0).  Upset at fake mile high on Sunday Nighter cost donkeys a playoff berth (aww, that's rough.  Awww ....)

2010: tom cable (8-8-0).  Upset at Arrowhead cost Chiefs first round bye.  cable fired (16-28-0).

2011: hue jackson (8-8-0).  Upset at Arrowhead cost Chiefs division championship.  jackson fired (8-8-0).

2012: "drunk" dennis allen (4-12-0).  Nothing notable.

2013: "drunk" dennis allen (4-12-0).  Where 3rd and 48 happens.

2014: "drunk" dennis allen (0-4-0); Tony Sparano (0-0-0).  Yes, this is twice in six years, the raiders have fired their head coach BEFORE OCTOBER!  #prideandpoise

Only two head coaches in twenty years post a winning record.  jon gruden ... and "sur" william callahan.

* at Packers 31, Vikings (+9) 28.  When I tweeted this pick, then walked in the front door two hours later and saw it was already 21-0 Packers, and Christian Ponder was on the field, all I could think of was Phil Hartman in “Greedy”:

* Bears (+2 1/2) 26, at Panthers 13.  Statement game for both teams.  Could (should?) have hu-yuge wildcard ramifications come late December.

* Browns (+1) 45, at Titans 3.  "Gordon Shumway Game O' The Week!"

* at Eagles (-6 1/2) 41, Rams 10.  "Good Times Game O' The Week!"

* at Giants (-4) 31, Falcons 14.  If the Monday Nighter wasn't so awful, this might get a designation.  Also, there's another game to come awful enough, that I might have to give out a fourth designation, that I despise giving out, I hate the show so much ...

* at Saints 23, Bucs (+10) 20.  Too many points.

* at Cowboys (-6 1/2) 42, Texans 14.  Too much Ryan Fitzpatrick.

* at Lions (-6 1/2) 38, Bills 13.  (Pause).  I don't want to.  (Pause).  I really, really, really don't want to.  (Pause).  It is the WORST TELEVISION SHOW OF ALL TIME, for God's sake.  (Pause).  At least we made it to week five, before hauling this out of Kermit Gosnell's clinic.  Ladies and gentlemen?  Your "One Day At A Time Game O' The Week!":

* Ravens (+3 1/2) 27, at Colts 20.  This one should be special.

* at Jaguars (+6) 21, Steelers 20.  Love the Jags in this spot.  

* "Super" Cardinals (+7 1/2) 24, at broncos 13.  The better team wins.  Yeah, I said it.  The better team in this game, is not the squad of satan.

* Bengals (+1) 26, at Patriots 21.  Remember 2006, when everyone kept picking the Steelers to rally, because after all, they're the Steelers, only they kept losing week after week, and looking worse each time out?  That's the 2014 Patriots.  If they win the AFC East, it's only because the Jets and Bills and Dolphins are that sucky.

* Seahawks (-7) 49, at Redskins 3.  If Mr. Obama ever wanted to sneak out and attend a football game, this is his week to do it ... because nobody's gonna be watching this stink bomb.


The Tailgating Plans:

There are no The Tailgating Plans, due to this being a Chiefs road game.


The Poem:

There is no The Poem, due to this being a Chiefs road game.


The Watching Party Plans:

As of posting, there are no The Watching Party Plans.  Although I'm sure the default "everyone's welcome at The Second Parents" plan is what will occur.


The Voice of Reason's, Uuh, Reason:

To be posted when (or if) received from Mr. Reason.  As always, his thoughts will only be edited for font size, and text formatting.


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

Giving him a pass.  He's been pretty awesome on Twitter the last two nights, actually.  When he actually shows his passion for real, rather than faking it for ratings?  You can actually see faint glimpses of the "Klassy" Kevin of 1999 leading The Walkout.  

You know, the Klassy One, before that (alleged) night in Mission Hills, before the rank hypocrisy, before turning every show into a staged promotional event that has destroyed whatever credibility he once had with this town's sports fanbase.

It's always good to see the formerly great ones, tap into that greatness one last time.


The Jets Best Guess:

I cannot explain this pick.  I am not going to even attempt to defend it.  

The Jets are in abject free-for-all, they look dead, lifeless, look like a "dead coach walking", in a division dominated by the Patriots, with a semi-decent Bills and Dolphins team to contend with as well.  It's only October, and it looks over, headed to San Diego, coming off a crushing home defeat to less than a stellar NFC North power.


That previous paragraph?

(Gulp) Twenty five year old me, would have typed in October 2002, as a 2-5 Jets squad headed to San Diego.

All that gave us?  Was this instant classic:

As much as I love "Fat" Andy Reid ... God, I miss Herm.  So in honor of the Coach, I'll take the same score as that cross-country trip twelve years ago, as my pick.

* Jets (+6 1/2) 44, at Chargers 13.  A game that led to a 7-2 finish, one of the greatest moments in franchise history*, and the most lopsided defeat of alleged all-time great satan manning's career, a 41-0 tuning to open the 2002 Playoffs.


(*: that moment?  Week Seventeen.  Packers at Jets.  The AFC Playoff picture entering that week, was a clusterf*ck the likes of which, not even I could dream up.  There were three teams alive for the AFC East championship (Dolphins, Patriots, Jets).  There were seven squads alive for the final wildcard (those three, plus the Chiefs, Chargers, Browns and broncos).

By the time Sunday arrived, the Chiefs were out, as they lost on Saturday.  Entering Sunday, the Dolphins controlled their own destiny for the division -- win at Foxboro, and they were in.  A Dolphins win would eliminate the Jets (and Pats), and would mean denver controlled its own destiny.  A Patriots win would eliminate the Dolphins (but not the Jets), and the broncos ... but they'd still need a Jets loss and/or a Browns loss, to get in.  

About 3pm CT, the Browns had just won in Cleveland, which eliminated the Chargers and broncos, and ensured Cleveland had the last wildcard.  Which meant we were down to one spot, with three teams vying for it.

If Miami won?  They won the East.
If New England won?  They'd win the East, with a Jets loss.
If the Jets won?  They'd win the East, with a Dolphins loss.

The current score?  Dolphins 24, Patriots 13, with barely three to play.  And Miami had the ball to boot.

This extremely dejected Jets fan, was beyond despondent, as the Jets didn't kick off until 3:15.  If there was one thing EVERY Jets fan entered confident of that final Sunday of the season, it's that the Patriots would beat Miami, in Foxboro, in the cold and snow.  

Then ... something started happening.

(I should note: I scoured Youtube! for any of the moments about to unfold.  Nothing.  Even the old NFL PrimeTime clips have been yanked.  Truly tragic.)

The Patriots somehow got the ball back.  They somehow got a touchdown.  They somehow converted the two.  They somehow got the ball back.  They somehow kicked a field goal.  They somehow forced overtime.

Meanwhile, in the Real Meadowlands, the Jets and Packers are off to a sluggish start.  After all -- at kickoff?  It looked like neither team had a damned thing to play for.  Green Bay had already won the NFC Norris, and knew it was hosting Atlanta to open the playoffs.  And Miami was up 11 with 3 to play; the Jets were toast.

It was 7-7, early second quarter.  Herm had ordered no updates from outside games be shown, no scores be posted, other than the Jets and Packers score.  The Jets take a timeout, and (in the interest of full disclosure, my favorite non-Chiefs player of all time) quarterback Chadwick Pennington trots to the sideline to confirm with Herm.

And then ... pandemonium.

Because a brave scoreboard operator, puts up the live feed from Foxboro.  Adam Vinatieri, lined up, to win it in overtime.  On the sideline, Herm and Chad look up, and immediately the conversation is over.  All eyes focused on the video board.

The kick.  It's up.  It's ... it's good!  It's good!  Holy sh*t, the Jets are alive!  The Jets are alive!  The Jets control their own destiny!

And as every damned person in that stadium started losing their collective sh*t, I'll never forget what happened next.

Because Herm Edwards -- and there is a saying, that "he who keeps his head while everyone else loses theirs?  The world is his" -- Herm grabs Chad Pennington by the helmet, yanks him back, and as Mr. Pennington recalled after the game, Herm had five words for him.

"Go win us a championship!"

The next play?  Pennington.  Santana "Doo Doo Doo Do Doo!" Moss.  Sixty plus yards.  Touchdown.

Jets 42, Packers 17.

AFC East Championship?  Delivered.  After opening 2-5.  After the crushing defeat in Chicago to fall to 7-7.  After New England trailed by multiple scores inside of three minutes to play.  Championship?  Delivered.

And that, peoples and peepettes?  Is just one reason why I love sports, so damned much.)


The Chiefs Prognostication (and Commentary):

When the Chiefs traded for Alex Smith, I wrote the following:

I ask you, Chiefs fans, do you regret the trade?

Because I don't.

Because that trade -- coupled with the James Shields trade?

Allows tomorrow to trump ...


I'm not exactly a Barack Obama supporter.  You couldn't get me to vote for him, if you had five Cuyahoga County union thugs drag me into a rigged polling booth at gunpoint.  Having said that ...


This ... was awesome:

"Now, my press secretary, Josh Earnest, is from Kansas City.  Now, he has made the observation, that the Royals are advancing.  (Applause).  That the Chiefs, uuh, kind of made the Patriots look kind of bad on Monday night.  (More applause, and happy laughs).  And, so ... clearly, something's going on in Kansas City."

Clearly, something's going on, in Kansas City.


I had intended this week's commentary, to be a look back, at two events that occurred over the next couple days -- one tragically ten years ago, one tragically one year ago.  Ten years ago on Sunday, we lost Randy.  One year ago on Monday, we lost my Dad.

Thankfully, we've still got Dad ... even if we lost him twice in an hour, and then for three days.  But we've still got him.  Thank God, I've still got him.

I think I'll save my thoughts on how I feel about each anniversary, for later, because as President Obama noted -- clearly, something's going on ... in Kansas City.


The only way Sunday could be topped at this point, is if the Chiefs were hosting the 49ers at noon.  That is the ONLY way Sunday's hype and potential, could possibly be topped.

Monday night, I walked into Arrowhead, and every time someone would bring up how sweet beating the Patriots ass like a freaking drum was, I'd simply say "tomorrow trumps tonight.  Somehow?  Tomorrow trumps tonight."

Here we are again.  Alex Smith heads to the Bay, to exact revenge for the resurgent Chiefs against a reeling 49ers squad.

And about the time that one ends, the single biggest Royals game of my memorable lifetime will see first pitch from James Shields, as the Royals host the Angels, seeking to reach the American League Divisional Series for the first time since I was in second grade.

Monday night was epic.  (Note: the recap's coming, I swear.)

Tuesday night, was so unbelievable, all I could do was cry.  Hell, it was so unbelievable, I couldn't sleep.

But Sunday?


Twenty four hours from now?

Tomorrow trumps ... 


If you're going tomorrow night, be loud.  How you can possibly top the insane asylum we created on Tuesday, I have no idea.  I wish I could be there.  Quite frankly, I can't afford it.  If that dude in "Airplane" picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue?  I picked the wrong week to need to see the eye doctor for new contacts and glasses.  I just can't justify the cost for Sunday.  I could do Sunday or Tuesday.  I stand by my decision.

Oh, and mad props to the Chiefs organization, for showing the Chiefs / 49ers "warm-up game" on the video boards, as Royals fans get ready for a game that simply thinking about, makes me start crying all over again.


It was noted on Tuesday night, the noise after Sal Perez won the single most amazing, incredible, unbelievable sporting event I have ever attended, the crowd noise was so loud, so atmosphere-shattering, that you could hear it in Waldo, over ten miles away.  

I live about six miles south of the Sports Complex.  I'm basically off 87th and Blue Ridge.  (The Sports Complex, for those of you not from Kansas City, is at about 43rd and Blue Ridge.)

I can't wait to hear you, about ... well, I was going to say 9:30, but let's be honest here, the Royals love to drag out the drama.  Whoever the dude or dudette is that runs TNT, should hire the Royals, because they know drama.  They know BOOM.  

But I can't wait, to open my back patio door, when Greg Holland ends this in style -- or when some new "wow, that greatest farm system ever didn't pan ou ... holy sh*t!  Sal Perez game winner!  Holy sh*t!  Moose went yard!  Holy sh*t!  HOSMER!!!!" hero emerges tomorrow (for the record, my money is on the prospect that has completely panned out, Alex Gordon, being that hero tomorrow.  Because that's what Gordon do), when that moment emerges?

I can't wait to open that back patio door, raise 13 and the frosty cold Coors Light he's protecting, and just soak in the noise.



Tomorrow trumps everything.

This is going to be the greatest sports day in Kansas City's history.  At least in my rememberable lifetime.

Tomorrow trumps everything.  (When it comes to sports, at least.)

Because clearly, something's going on, in Kansas City.  And if even Mr. Obama can see something's going on here?

Who are we to miss it?

Get ready for another long night, Kansas City.  We haven't been to bed before midnight for the last week.  What's one more sleepless night?

Especially one as exciting and memorable, as this one might be.


Scratch that.  Let me rephrase that.

Especially one as exciting and memorable, as this one?

Will be.

* Chiefs (+5) 24, at 49ers 17.  Week 2 1994 Memorial Score.  And God help you, if you're a Chiefs fan, and don't remember that one.

* at Royals 6, Angels 5 -- in regulation for once.  Game 3 1985 ALDS Memorial Score.  How I wish to God, as a Royals fan, I could remember that one.

Because I'll never forget 11:53pm Tuesday, September 30, 2014? 

For as long as God allows me to live.

And I'm guessing most of you, won't either ...

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the third thursday thirteen ...

"So you're dancing on the ocean -- Running fast, along the sand. A spirit born, of earth and water -- Fire flying from your hand...