Necessary Roughness



Necessary Roughness - Dave Brockie

It was an ugly weekend in football and sports in general, and I found myself at times wondering things like “why do I care about this?”  The bad stories just kept piling up, and it was at times difficult and painful to watch. It didn’t help that the sports world was still digesting the tragic news of a horrible wreck during an Indy Car race in Las Vegas that took the life of driver Dan Wheldon. The promoters had packed way-too-many cars on a way-too-small track, and it only took 12 laps for an gigantic accident that involved almost half the 32-car field. So the sports weekend was already off to a start that could be termed… UGLY.

And it got uglier quickly, especially if you are a Washington Redskins fan. Once again your team was made a laughing-stock of the league, as QB Rex Grossman experienced an epic meltdown against the desperate-for-a-win Philadelphia Eagles. Grossman not only threw four interceptions, he almost got intercepted several other times, and repeatedly forced the ball into double and triple coverage until he was finally benched in the third quarter. But Grossman’s miserable QB rating was only the fourth worst in his career! Back-up John Beck fared a bit better, bringing the Skins to within a TD, but it was too little, too late, and the Eagles beat the Skins 20-13. UGLY.

After the game a visibly shaken Rex Grossman gave reporters a few words, and it was pretty apparent that the dude felt horrible. I mean, here is a guy who has played QB his whole life but has never been all-that-great at it. He did take the Bears to the Super Bowl, so you’d think that would count for something. But no, every one credits the Bears’ defense to the point where they make it sound like a chimp could have played QB and they still would have gotten to the Super Bowl. Rex was skewered mercilessly in the Chicago press, to the point where he was basically run out of town. It must have meant a lot to Rex to hook-up with the Shanahans and to get another shot at the big time with the Redskins. And to have blown it in such a way… well, I couldn’t help but feel bad for the dude. Then for some reason I remembered the ceaseless tormenting I received from “the Jocks” in high school, and how Rex looked just like one of them… it brought back memories that were UGLY.

But wait — what’s that? They haven’t announced who’s starting next week against the Panthers? And they won’t until Wedsnesday? So that means that Rex might get another chance? And now players are mouthing off about what the coach should do? Suddenly all that love in D.C. has vanished… can back-up John Beck save the Redskins’ season or is it time for yet another comic farce from our nation’s capitol?  Gonna get UGLY.

In Detroit, the Lions winning streak was finally snapped by the visiting San Francisco 49er’s, who are now 5-1 after a crummy 6-10 last year. After the game, the Niners coach, ex-NFL player Jim Harbaugh, went berserk, chest-bumping his players and screaming like a madman, until he finally encountered opposing coach Jim Schwartz. What was supposed to be the customary hand-shake was delivered in an overly- energetic fashion, and was followed by a backslap that left the Lions coach fuming. It took a minute, but Schwartz exploded in rage, chasing down Harbaugh and attempting to attack him. A huge scrum involving coaches, players and officials broke out, and the parties were separated. It was ridiculous and stupid, and the highlight shows dedicated hours to this mindless display of idiocy. Way to set an example, guys! Again, UGLY.

Just last week I was talking about Jason Campbell and how glad I was that he was doing well in Oakland. He played for the Skins for a couple and got beat up a lot in the press. He had to deal with a retard owner, a new offensive coordinator every year, and an O-line that couldn’t keep him off his back. So when I heard he had broken his collarbone in Oakland’s 24-17 win over the Cleveland Browns, I was bummed. I mean, do you have any idea how hard you have to get hit to break your collarbone? Try have a bull kick you, and you might have an approximate idea. So Campbell is out for at least six games, and it looks like Carson Palmer might fill the void, which well could leave Campbell without a job when he does get healthy. The guy just can’t catch a decent break. Get it? UGLY, right?

In a bunch of other games where either I didn’t care who was playing or the teams were sucking so bad I couldn’t stand to watch: The Bengals and The Colts kept sucking, and the Patriots beat the Cowboys in the battle-of-the-two-teams-I-hate-more-than-any-other Bowl. The Vikings finally benched McNabb in favor of Ponder but lost to the cruising Bears 39-10. Green Bay stayed unbeaten, besting the hapless Rams, and The Falcons, Jets and Giants were all winners. There were more games but I don’t care, I just want to tell you this tasteless joke I made up…

Hey, how do you take your race car driver?

Whel-don! Get it?

See ya next week!

– Dave Brockie

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