FIWK the NFL: Players don't even care about the Pro Bowl

Well, that's not entirely true. They care a great deal about being named to the Pro Bowl, whether it's for a monetary bonus or the public recognition, but they don't care about playing in the Pro Bowl. Last year, the AFC leaders in passing yards were, in order, Matt Schaub, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, Kyle Orton, Joe Flacco, David Garrard, Carson Palmer, Matt Cassel, Chad Henne, Mark Sanchez, Vince Young. Well, considering there are only 16 teams in the AFC, once you get past 8 it's kind of hard to call them "leaders". The three AFC quarterbacks that played in the Pro Bowl were Matt Schaub, Vince Young and David Garrard. Schaub I understand (with some explanation to follow), but Garrard was 8th in passing yards and Young was 13th. 13th!!! Out of sixteen teams! Now it is important to remember that Peyton Manning was busy practicing for the Super Bowl (he probably needed just a little more practice) and Philip Rivers and Tom Brady were 'injured'. So now Matt Schaub's selection makes a lot more sense. And when shrink the pool to Roethlisberger, Orton, Flacco, Garrard, Palmer, Cassell, Henne, Sanchez and Young and learn that Roethlisberger and Palmer declined an invitation as an alternate, also due to 'injury', choosing Young and Garrard over Orton, Flacco, Cassell, Henne and Sanchez doesn't seem that bad. What really sucks is that eight guys can claim to have been invited to the Pro Bowl. Half the AFC had a Pro Bowl quarterback!

In all, 84 players were on the Pro Bowl roster and an additional 32 can claim to be Pro Bowlers, but could not make it due to injury or playing in the Super Bowl. 38% of the Pro Bowl players were replacements of some sort. How are fans supposed to care if the players themselves don't care that much.

As for this year, I honestly have no idea and I may watch if there's nothing better to do. Here are the rosters. Go Philip Rivers!!!

Wet Wednesday: Robitussin

Wet Wednesday this week is brought to you by Robitussin. Turns out I've had bronchitis for about a week now, it's no fun. So I've been drinking a lot of the stuff.

Robitussin does not taste good, let me tell you. Its viscous, sticky consistency coats the mouth and requires chasing from water and snacks to go away. The bright pink color lets you know you're in for trouble right away - I don't want to stereotype here, but bright pink liquids don't have a great flavor track record. The taste is like if melted down cotton candy had been left to ferment in a rusty, molded bronze jar. It has kind of helped my cough though.

FIWK the NFL: Conference championships.

Scott, I'm really going to try and keep my thoughts organized for you, but I can already feel that it falling apart. I think that despite all the Steelers-Jets drama, that game is more likely to be a blowout and the Bears-Packers game will be pretty close. Both spreads are 3.5 points and I think the Steelers easily cover, but I haven't figured out if the Packers will cover that last half a point. A couple public service announcements before getting to the picks. The games are both on Sunday at noon and 3:30 Pacific time. I know this is unusual, but with proper advanced planning, you should be able to time your drinking just fine. Second, the Pro Bowl is next week in Hawaii, not at the same location as the Super Bowl as it was last year.

FIWK the NFL: Revenge of the losers!

Last week I went 3-1, no thanks to any of my actual analysis. The Seahawks and Jets both won last week despite throwing more interceptions than their opponents. Drew Brees threw for 404 yards, two TDs and no picks. The Seahawks had 77 yards on 20 carries, and their 3.85 yards per carry just barely beat the Saints 3.5 yards per carry...until Marshawn Lynch had the slowest, awesomest run of the year. My postliminary analysis determined that the Saints inability to score a touchdown from inside the 10 yard line led to their downfall. Garrett Hartley kicked three field goals of less than 30 yards, while the Seahawks scored one extra touchdown and settled for one fewer field goal. When I said to look at how the Jets offense does against the Colts defense to determine the winner, I guess I could point to the last drive and say that New York's ability to drive the field to score a field goal as time expired made the difference. But really, I think it was the Jets defense holding the Colts to one offensive touchdown that made the difference. So I think I'm taking a hiatus from my normal analysis and metrics when I make my predictions this week. It just so happens that every game this week is a rematch of a regular season game and my bold prediction for the week is that every loser gets revenge. In every game, the team that lost the previous matchup will emerge victorious. Well, it's not really that bold of a prediction since the Patriots & Jets and Steelers & Ravens split their regular season series and I'm picking the 8-9 Seahwaks to lose. So no matter who I pick in the AFC games it will satisfy my prediction. And I'm picking the Seahawks to lose. With their playoff victory, Seattle still has a sub-.500 record. In fact, for them to get over .500 they will have to make it to the Super Bowl. Seriously, how the hell did the Seahawks beat a playoff team? And then I'm picking the Packers because I think they are a better team. At least those are my straight up picks. As for Against The Spread...

Beer Wednesday: Palo Santo Marron by Dogfish Head

I like Dogfish Head because they are not afraid to take chances and brew interesting, unique beers. Their Palo Santo Marron is a great example. This beer is very strong (12% ABV) and is described as a "malt beverage" on the bottle. It was apparently brewed in tanks made out of South American Palo santo wood, which I had never heard of before. Regardless of the wood type, using wood barrels to add flavor to fermented drinks is a time-tested tradition in wine making (oak is popular) and has caught on in brewing also.


Saints vs. Seahawks image search is surprisingly chock full of awesomey goodness. Like the two images above. And this one. And this one. And this one. And this one. Well maybe not those last two, because one of those looks like its something we can do at home and the other shows people drinking. The moral of the story is to not let yourself get distracted. Don't simply look at the Seahawk's 7-9 record and the fact that they are the first ever division champ to have a losing record. Don't get distracted by the fact that the Saints are the defending champs and they already defeated the Seahawks 34-19, with Drew Brees throwing for 382 yards and 4 touchdowns. The spread for this game is 10.5 points, so while it is very easy to pick the Saints to win and move on, we need to make sure that we analyze this game just as well as the other three.