Shammell’s Tuesday Tirade: Turkey Day
- Updated: November 21, 2012
What are you thankful for? Seems like a pretty easy question to answer. Cutting through the obvious choice of friends, family, servicemen/women, etc., and digging a bit deeper, you can really get an appreciation for sports in general. The sports world is an awesome distraction from the gruesome reality that is everyday life. Tired from work? Turn on a game when you get home and zone out. Have a day off? Get a pair of tickets in the cheap seats and go blow off some steam. I feel we take sports for granted on a daily basis, and the world of athletics is something that should be noticed and appreciated. I’ll do my part by writing sub-par articles week in and week out that really only my editors and Dad give me feedback on, but what have you done lately to enjoy the sporting world we live in? Sure you’re reading this, but seriously, think about it. Volunteer your time to help kids learn (after all, even LeBron had a coach and needed guidance when he was 6), buy tickets and sit silently and appreciate rather than heckle, and really just bask in the realization of the fact that you’re enjoying something that not many other people can.
Enough with the aimless rambling, but Thanksgiving is a holiday that is about much more than just turkey and football. Appreciate the things around you, and your perspectives may change.
Well, off we go…
BAD News of the week– Andrew Bynum injures OTHER knee
The trade for Andrew Bynum is continuing to look worse and worse in the eyes of everyone in the sporting world. The 76ers boldly stepped out on a limb and traded for a guy who has missed nearly half of every season he’s played in the NBA, in hopes that the problems would be over once he got to Philadelphia. Recovering from an off season knee procedure, Bynum was inching closer and closer to a comeback when out of nowhere, he injures his OTHER knee… BOWLING. Are you kidding me right now? Now, I’m going to be the one who goes out on a limb and says it is wrong to fault Bynum for the injury. Hurting your knee is equal to tearing your rotator cuff while bagging groceries. Yes, it’s a freak accident that is unexpected, but the problem more than likely lies within his knee, not the fact that he was bowling. I do have to say that there are other leisurely activities that he could have enjoyed while recovering and on the verge of making his 76er debut, but you can’t blame the guy for living his life. In retrospect, he has be rigorously working out his knee lately, so it’s not like he was ordered to stay off his feet. I’m sure I speak for the entire city when I say that we wish Andrew a speedy recovery. Our season can only rest on Holiday’s shoulders for so long.
INTERESTING News of the week– Reading Phillies become The Reading Fightin Phillies
Not much of a change you could say on the surface. However, instead of being referred to as the Phillies, as they have since their creation in 1967, the Philadelphia Phillies double A affiliate will now go by “The Fightins” for short. On top of that, they unveiled an all new logo, mascot, and jersey scheme that will feature an ostrich of all animals as the focal point for the team’s logo. The Fightins will also suit up in a brand new set of uniforms which will feature an array of five hat choices for any given game, along with homeand road batting practice hats. On top of this, there are also four uniform sets to select from, two with an old fashioned feel, and two with a modern twist to them. The goal of the team’s new persona is obviously a marketing scheme, giving people the reason to buy merchandise and check out some games during the year. Another goal of the uniforms is to pay homage to Baseballtown and the early Phillies teams, particularly the squad of the 50’s known affectionately as, “The Whiz Kids.”
BEST Game of the Week– Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Houston Texans
What an unexpected blood bath this game became. The best thing that happened to the Jacksonville Jaguars all year was the injury Blaine Gabbert sustained that knocked him out of the game (I mean that in the least offensive way possible). In walks Chad Henne who decides he’s going to have a career day himself. With Henne at the helm, the dynamic of the game changed 100%. Henne took command and with 12 minutes left in regulation, the Jaguars were holding a comfortable 34-20 lead. Rookie first round pick Justin Blackmon had himself a career day as well, tallying 7 catches for an astounding 236 yards and a touchdown (an 81 yard touchdown at that). However, the Texans were not done. We’ll get into the nitty gritty of their stats in one of the fantasy categories below, but just for giggles, Sunday marked just the third time opposing receivers tallied over 200 yards in Blackmon and the Texans’ Andre Johnson. Henne ended the game with 354 passing yards and 4 touchdown passe. Quarterback Matt Schaub led a late surge to tie up the game, and eventually the boys from Houston took the game in overtime 43-37 on, you guessed it, an Andre Johnson touchdown catch.
WORST Game of the Week– Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens
I don’t want to say worst game, possibly the word I’m looking for is overhyped. This pains me to say as a Ravens fan, but I was not at all impressed with the performance either team put forth on Sunday night. It all started with the Steelers’ first drive when Byron Leftwich of all people scrambled free and scored a touchdown of over 30 yards. He ran past a few Baltimore would be tacklers like they didn’t even want to touch the man, as he reached the end zone, and more than likely headed to the side line for the oxygen tank. Don’t get me wrong, this was a hard hitting game as all Ravens-Steelers match ups are, this one just didn’t live up to what it could have been. In my eyes, that is largely due to the performance of Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco. Again, being born and raised in South Jersey and a Ravens fan since their coming to the league in 1996, I should theoretically be Flacco’s biggest supporter, but his streaky play scares the hell out of me. It was extremely evident when at half time, Flacco and Leftwich’s numbers were almost identical. On the big stage, Joe Flacco will either play like the best play caller in the NFL, or the worst. Sunday did not exhibit his abilities at all. However, in the end, my Ravens still came out on top by a barn burning score of 13-10. Just like the old cliché goes, a win is a win is a win.
BEST Fantasy Performance– Matt Schaub & Andre Johnson, QB and WR, Houston Texans
What a day for this duo. As mentioned before, the Texans eventually took the game in overtime by a score of 43-37, but how they got there was absolutely insane. Let me take you through this stat line, Matt Schaub, 43 for 55 for 527 yards andfive touchdowns. Schaub’s performance now ties him for the second highest yards in a single game with Warren Moon. Everything Schaub touched seemed to turn to gold, especially in the fourth quarter where his two touchdowns with under six minutes to play sent the game into overtime. Johnson, on the other hand, tallied a career best 14 catches for 273 yards. The pair set fantasy scores ablaze in basically every league in the nation, and even though both players are reliable week in and week out, I don’t think anyone could have envisioned this. Fantasy owners can send thank you cards to Chad Henne, because without his performance turning Jacksonville into a serious offense, Houston more than likely would have relied more heavily on the run in the second half.
FUNNY Video of the week– Mail in Your Lockout Beard
I came across a hilarious video yesterday while browsing YouTube as I usually do. The guys from the YouTube page called “SlugRiders” are apparently from Pittsburgh and are very evident Flyer haters. Putting that aside and despite my professional feelings, I’m going to feature their video anyway. This idea is absolutely brilliant / hilarious / disturbing. The video calls for everyone to shave their lockout beards, and mail them in to the NHL offices. I do not encourage you to do so, but the video does include the real mailing address, so, be my guest. Enjoy!
That’ll do it again for another Tuesday Tirade! Have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving Holiday!