Monday, September 24, 2012

9/24 (NFL Week 3 Hangover) Quickie

Yes, the replacement refs are not doing a great job and there is no real reason the NFL should let this go on, but I'm with Yahoo's Dan Wetzel that the players' gripes are a bigger spectacle.

Other big storylines from yesterday that I found fascinating:

*Torrey Smith's grief: It is unfathomable that Smith lost his brother earlier in the day, then came to the stadium and put together a brilliant performance that led the Ravens over the hated Pats.

*Saints are 0-3: Including 0-2 at home! Part of it is surely the distractions from the offseason. Part of it is surely missing head coach Sean Payton. But maybe part of it is that they're just not that good.

*Cardinals are 3-0: OK, OK -- we believe. (No, no: We still don't. Come on. Seriously? At least we can all agree that the Eagles were a house of cards.)

*49ers lose to the Vikings: This week's "Just When You Thought You Understood the NFL, You Really Don't" moment, as clear as they come.

*Runner-up: The Titans beating the Lions in a shootout. Jake Locker is the new Matt Stafford?

*And the best team in the NFL after 3 weeks is...: The Falcons?

More to lead off the week:

CFB: The big storyline will be "FSU is back!" but... the weekend's real takeaway is that no one is stopping Oregon and that an Alabama-Oregon national-title match-up feels like a foregone conclusion. (But, without question, a strong -- even dominant -- FSU is good for college football, if bad for my Gators.)

MLB State of the Wild Card Races: Baltimore and Oakland in command of the AL Wild Card, but with 9 or 10 games to play, the Angels don't seem ready to concede. In the NL, the Brewers (2.5 GB) look like they want to make it interesting (but it'll take a collapse by a Braves or Cards).

Golf: Back in February, anyone have Brendt Snedeker as FedEx Cup winner? Anyone?

-- D.S.

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