Tuesday, December 9, 2008
It's been a few weeks since I chimed in with my rankings, so what the hell, let's check out the landscape, top 10 anyway...
1. Giants -- Yes they lost, or were beaten every which on Sunday to be more precise by the Eagles BUT... they are still the best team in the NFL. Period.
2. Titans -- They're 12-1 and I still may not be able to name 5 Titans not named Collins, White or Haynesworth.
3. Steelers -- Any team that's got the Defensive Hat Trick going (#1 Overall, Rushing & Passing) has got it going on... and these Steelers most definitely got it going on. Strong case could be made to make them #2
4. Panthers -- Arguably the best running team right now this side of the Meadowlands so any team that can run the ball... (more on this later)
5. Ravens -- Gotta give props to John Harbaugh for naming then sticking with a rookie QB; keeping Rex Ryan didn't hurt, either
6. Colts -- Are they back? Were they ever really gone? Were they just pacing themselves this year? Will I ever stop posing questions to myself?
7. Eagles -- No, that's not a typo! Look around, who else is there? But it's not so much by default the Birds are #7 as it is they've been playing damn good football the last two weeks and we all know of Big Red's December stellar record.
8. Jets -- may get some heat for this one but I still think having #4 on your team is worth a few notches on the rankings belt. This time of year is Brett Favre's time of the year. Man, did that just sound like something John Madden would say or what?
9. Bucs -- last night's game notwithstanding, this is a veteran team, especially on defense and a QB who has an almost unparalleled will to win.
10. Cowboys -- Begrudgingly I put the Boys on here. Their defense is still one of the best and Tony Romo and the way he performs in big games... well...
Some things just add up...
50-15 and 36-28-1
What do those numbers represent?
The first, 50-15, is the current combined record of the Top 5 Rushing Offenses in the NFL.
The second, 36-28-1, is the current combined record of the Top 5 Passing Offenses in the NFL. (Guess which team falls into this category? Hmmm, think the tie gives it away??!!!)
Under the heading of Complete Over Simplification, those teams that can run the ball are better than those teams that can pass the ball. And for the record, no team appears on BOTH lists.
But let's dig a little deeper.
The current combined record of the Top 5 Rushing Defenses in the NFL is 46-19.
The current combined record of the Bottom 5 Rushing Defenses in the NFL is 11-54.
Now of course, it didn't take a MENSA member to know that last record would be poor but as much as a cliché as it is, to be successful in the NFL week in, week out, you must be able to run the ball and you must be able to stop the run.
So it should come as no surprise to learn that over the last 2 games, which the Eagles have won, convincingly I might add, they have averaged 165 total net rushing yards on offense while allowing an average of 57 net yards rushing on defense.
Um, you, the big guy, Andy is it... the defense rests.
Where's Gordon Gekko when you need him?
In this age of uber corporate greed, yet another example of another corporate CEO acting with such utter ambivalence and callousness to all others, it's almost too hard to believe.
Yes in this day and age where automaker CEOs seeking help to save their floundering companies, figured using paper napkins instead of cloth on their corporate, company-paid private jet was their idea of a sacrifice comes the story of recently-appointed Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain.
What's ol' Johnny boy up to you ask?
But you do remember Merrill Lynch, don't you? They were the Wall St. behemoth who was about to go pork belly up when they were bought up by another Wall St. giant, Bank of America.
Well it turns out Mr. Thain decided that he had himself a really tough and stressful year, so much so that as of this past Monday, he thinks he deserves a bonus to the tune of $10 million. Yeah, you heard me, TEN MILLION DOLLARS.
One person, at least, thinks he deserves it. Evan Newmark of the Wall St. Journal no less. Here's Evan's story and I'll smoke what Evan's smoking because clearly he's on something, or it at least appears that way.
How can anyone, ANYONE in their right OR wrong mind justify giving a $10 million bonus during these troubled times to a man who already makes hundreds of million dollars?
Well the epilogue to this tale is today ol' Johnny boy changed his mind and decided he does NOT need a bonus.
I tell you, in this season of giving, nothing warms my heart than the sight of a Brooks Brothers-suit-wearing CEO refusing to take money that is no more his than it is yours or mine.
I feel a tear welling up in my eyes...
Til next time.
Posted by Steve Olenski at Tuesday, December 09, 2008