Friday, October 21, 2011

Benster and D Pick Your Games -- Ponderosa Hotspur Edition

Okay, old dude, it's time to get after it again. I'm ready to demonstrate some genius and bring the HYYYYYYYPPPPPPE!

In that order?

Doesn't matter which order, Geritol Fan -- I just bring plenty of both. Overwhelming amounts of genius and generous helpings of HYYYYYYYYYPPPPPPE! It's what I do. And I do it well. So watch me work.

Nebraska Cornhuskers (-25) vs. Minnesota Golden Gophers. So how embarrassing is this point spread, old dude? The Gophers are playing at home. It's Homecoming weekend. And they expect to get crushed and have their shiny new stadium overrun with Nebraska fans. See, the deal is this, and listen up, Joel Maturi -- you schedule the weakest team you can find for your Homecoming game. The idea is to make the alumni happy, so they feel good about donating more money. So, genius marketers of Ski-U-Mah, let me ask you a question: why are you playing Nebraska? Why aren't you playing St. Francis High School, like Irondale did? I'm a sophomore in high school and I know these things. Why did you even get a marketing degree if you can't figure out the basics? Oh, and by the way, Nebraska is going to crush the Gophers. Happy Homecoming, alumni! Be sure to try some veal. Blackshirts 100, Red Balance Sheet 0.

I don't think Joel Maturi is going to be taking your calls, Seabiscuit. Hard to argue the larger point, though. The Gophers have a lot of work to do and this isn't a good way to spend a nostalgic weekend back on campus. Nebraska 42, Gophers 17.

Beloved Wisconsin Badgers (-7 1/2) vs. Michigan State Sparty the Spartan. Last year the Badgers lost up at East Lansing. They didn't look so good that day, but they turned into a juggernaut in the weeks that followed. This season, the Badgers come into East Lansing with their juggernaut credentials already in place. So what's different this time? First of all, Russell Wilson has been earning his scholarship and then some. He's a frontrunner for the Heisman Trophy. Scott Tolzien was a good Big Ten quarterback, but the only way he would have been at the Heisman banquet is if he were serving as a waiter. Harsh? Well, it's a hard world, people. I don't think Sparty will be fazed by the Badger offense, because they are the only team that has slowed down Denard Robinson this season. Of course, Denard Robinson can't throw. Russell Wilson can throw, and very well, thank you. It's imperative that the Badgers get out to a lead quickly and take the Spartan crowd out of the game. If they establish dominance early, it won't be a problem. If they let Sparty hang around, watch out. Sparty also is without William Gholston, a defensive lineman who specializes in cheap shots. That will help Montee Ball and James White get going early. So, who wins? Wisconsin 28, Sparty 24.

Interesting stat of the week -- the Badgers have given up 58 points total this season and have scored 59 points twice in a game. I think this is the best Badger team I've seen and while this will be a tough test, I really don't see anyone having an answer for the varied Badger attack. Until they get to January, that is. Wisconsin 42, Michigan State 24.

Glorious Green Bay Packers (-9) vs. Minnesota Ponders. Someone tell Hoss and Little Joe -- the Vikings are in the Ponderosa! Oh, I'm sorry, I got that wrong. They are starting the Christian Ponder era. And even if their dashing young quarterback, who doesn't look at all like any of the cast members of Bonanza, takes the field on a horse, the Packers will be ready to stampede into his grill. But, I have a major concern for the Packers. Marshall Newhouse is making his first start against Mullet Man Jared Allen, who likes to pretend he's a cowboy by doing a lame rodeo move every time he sacks a quarterback. Well, if we remember 2009, T.J. Lang and Allen "The Swinging Gate" Barbre were not even a speed bump for Mr. Allen, who proceeded to sack Aaron Rodgers about 372 times that afternoon. Could we see a repeat of that? No. But it won't be as easy as it sounds. Pack 49, Vi-queens 3.

Not sure I follow that. It won't be easy, but the Packers are going to crush the Vikings anyway? While I ponder that, I'll also ponder Mr. Ponder. I think he'll be okay eventually, but he got into the game last week during garbage time and it's difficult to gauge what he really did. The Packer defense is still, ahem, malleable, but they've managed to make plays when they need them. I think the Packers will score a few times if they get Allen blocked. I'm thinking Allen will know Tom Crabtree pretty well by the end of this one. Packers 35, Vikings 17.

Bear Down Chicago da Bearz (-1) vs. Tampa Bay Creamsicles, in London, Merry Olde England. Before I pick this game, I bring you a musical interlude:

That's right, Decrepit -- war is declared and battle come down! Now I know there will be a few confused Londoners wandering around outside the stadium, expecting an Aston Villa vs. Tottenham Hotspur game, but we all know that the NFL likes to play a game in England every year and this time they've decided to risk an international incident by sending Jay Cutler over there as a goodwill ambassador. In fact, as part of the event every fan in attendance will get to run through a gap in the Bears offensive line and sack Cutler, without fear of getting a red card. I'm especially hoping that they figure out a way to work Wallace and Gromit into this game somehow. As for the game itself, da Bearz need to be on their toes because the Creamsicles are a very good young team. I think they might make some noise in the NFC South and maybe even win the division. It's their turn, as I recall. Creamsicles 7, da Bearz 3.

So is the game going to be decided on penalty kicks? I think the last thing Jay Cutler would want would be to have an official award extra time. The Bears played very well last week in crushing the Vikings, but I have to imagine they hate having to go all the way to England for a game at this point in the season. It's a close game and I think that they're still a bit better than Tampa, but the young guy is right -- the Bucs are a team to watch as the season goes on. Bears 21, Tampa 17.

Hotlanta Falcons (+3 1/2) vs. Detroit Lions. So Decrepit, did you hear about that animal escape problem in Ohio earlier in the week? They had to shoot a bunch of lions and tigers and other animals. Last week the Lions shot themselves in the foot by losing to the 49ers and then having their coach, Jim Schwartz, go all WWE on Jim Harbaugh over a handshake. I mean, what's up with that? Was this the first sign of the Lions embracing their long history of fail? Or was it merely a hiccup in their renaissance season? I do know one thing -- that renaissance isn't for weird people running around in leotards, munching on turkey legs and singing along with some dude carrying a lute. Dirty Birds 27, Curse of Bobby Layne 20.

I love Renaissance Fair jokes, Benster. Well played. As for the game, it should be a good test for both teams. I think the Lions are a better team, but I also think the 49ers gave the league a template for how to beat the Lions. And if Jahvid Best gets hurt this week, the Lions will have issues. Calvin Johnson might get quadruple teamed the rest of the way. Lions 24, Falcons 19.

As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly. Ben out!

1 comment:

Night Writer said...

The Packer-Viking game turned out to be closer and more entertaining than most would have expected (as these intra-divisional rivalries often are), even with 3/4's of the Viking defensive backfield starters injured or incarcerated.

It is said that the officials could call offensive holding on any pass play. From what I saw, I believe the same could be said of Charles Woodson and pass interference. That is all.