Today's Names to Know: Tom Brady, Yorvit Torrealba, Adrian Peterson, Maurice Jones-Drew, LaDainian Tomlinson, Devin Hester, Vinny Testaverde, South Florida, Greg Monroe, Kelvin Sampson and More!
NFL: Pats rout Cowboys, 48-27. There is very little to say about this game, except that it was yet another statement that the Pats are out to absolutely eviscerate the rest of the league en route to 19-0. They just took the best team in the NFC and destroyed them in their own house. (I love how some people think the Colts are right there with the Pats as the NFL's clear-cut best. Right now, I think the Pats would beat the Colts worse than they beat the Cowboys.)
Sunday's NFL Stud: Tom Brady, who threw a career-high 5 TD passes and became the first QB ever to throw at least three TD passes in each of the first six games of a season. (Take that, Peyton.)
MLB Playoffs, NLCS:
20 of their last 21. Three in a row in the NLCS. Six in a row in the playoffs. Led most recently by mostly anonymous players with mythical-sounding names like Yorvit Torrealba and Josh Fogg.
And I will be at Coors Field tonight for Game 4, rooting like crazy to witness a pennant-clincher. Franklin Morales vs. Micah Owings (known more for his bat than his arm.) More tomorrow on the game tonight.
ALCS: Indians, Red Sox tied 1-1 with series moving to
Where to start with Game 2? Eric Gagne pooped the bed (in a "didn't-he-used-to-be?" performance that will linger in the memory far longer than his record-breaking season just a few seasons ago); Trot Nixon enjoyed a moment of ironic revenge; and Papi/Manny combined to go 1/6. (Tonight: Matsuzaka vs. Westbrook.)
More NFL: A handful of notes that won't come close to doing the day justice.
(1) Adrian Peterson is amazing: It's not just that the NFL might as well engrave the Rookie of the Year trophy with Peterson's name; it's that Peterson is arguably the best running back in the NFC right now, rookie or otherwise. Yesterday, he set the record for rushing yards by a Vikings RB (again, rookie or otherwise).
(2) Maurice Jones-Drew is back: 12 carries for 125 yards and 2 TDs, and the TD celebration of the day: Karate Kid, which out-did his flip into the end-zone. And with a solid game from QB David Garrard, the Jaguars are suddenly looking like one of the top non-Pats teams in the AFC. Next week's MNF game against the Colts will be the true test (not that last season's Jags throttling of the Colts meant anything in the larger scheme of either team's long-term fortunes).
(3) Vinny Testaverde is ageless. If Tom Brady didn't steal it from him, Vinny would have been this week's stud, for being the oldest starting QB to win a game in NFL history – a week after being signed, no less. He threw a TD pass, the 21st consecutive season he has done that, which strikes me as a record damn near unbreakable. Unless you're a Cardinals fan or playing against the Panthers, how can you NOT root for Vinny T?
(4) If you don't like Brady Quinn, you can't possibly help but like Derek Anderson.
(5) Welcome back LaDainian. (You, too, Larry Johnson.) 4 TDs is exactly why you were the consensus No. 1 overall fantasy football pick.
(6) And, apologies to both LT and AP, but Devin Hester is the most exciting player in the league right now.
(7) The Rams are absolutely utterly awful. The Dolphins aren't far behind, but if you were forced to pick the worst team in the league, the Rams would be it.
(8) Is it NBC's Football Night In America or Watch For Plummeting TV Cameras Night? Either way, it was good for the Saints, who won their first game and got 141 yards out of Reggie Bush and a solid game out of Drew Brees.
NFL Milestones: Tony Gonzalez set a new record for career TDs by a tight end. Enough to get him into the Hall of Fame? I don't think so.
MNF: Giants-Falcons? Ugh. Maybe if Michael Vick was playing (or even just in attendance), this would be something to watch. Otherwise, I'm glad I'll be in
CFB: First BCS standings revealed. Ohio State and South Florida are in the driver's seat at 1-2, with USF set to leap OSU if/when the human pollsters ever lose their insane bias against them to match the computers, who rank USF at No. 1 (as I do -- see this week's BlogPoll ballot).
I think it's an embarrassment that Harris Poll and Coaches Poll voters – who are supposed to be so-called EXPERTS in college football – don't know anything about
In a season as insane as this one, it's key to see who this year's
That 1-loss team with the inside track is LSU, with a healthy margin ahead of the next-highest-ranked 1-loss team,
CFB Weekend Wrap: You know it's an insanely great season when, after three straight weeks, you can't decide which had the wildest result:
(a) Three weeks ago, when all those upsets in the Top 10 happened;
(b) Two weeks ago, when preseason and presumptive national-title favorite USC lost at home to a 41-point underdog in the biggest regular-season upset in modern CFB history;
(c) This past weekend, when the No. 1 team lost, then the team presumptively poised to take over the No. 1 spot lost (at home to an unranked team on an insanely boneheaded game-ending play).
You'll forgive me if I don't take the BCS too seriously right now: Of the remaining BCS-conference unbeaten teams:
South Florida: Will lose at
B.C.: Will lose at Virginia Tech.
Kansas: Will lose in the Big 12 CG (if not sooner)
Hawaii: Will lose to Boise State.
Meanwhile, the most highly regarded 1-loss teams have both remaining gauntlets of their own (South Carolina and Kentucky still have to play Florida) or have fatal flaws (i.e., USC and Cal lost at home to unranked teams,
If I had to make a prediction now, I would say that no team will finish the season unbeaten, and that the national-title match-up will be LSU vs.
College Hoops Recruiting:
By the way, I would like to modify my preseason pick of UCLA to win the national title to include my entire Final Four: UCLA,
MLB Offseason: Reds hire Dusty Baker. Meh.