It’s simple: babies dressed up as overgrown children = comedy GOLD.
As proof, we give you Baby Andy Reid and Baby Bill Belichick, early winners of this year’s favorite Halloween costumes:
Your move, baby Tom Coughlin …
This photo has been making the rounds this week, after being unearthed by Doug Kyed at NESN, and we’d be remiss if we didn’t share it with our readers.
To absolutely no one’s surprise (but everyone’s delight), it turns out that New Orleans Saints Defensive Coordinator Rob Ryan used to rock the goatee and mullet, and was the spitting image of Kenny Powers, the beloved anti-hero of HBO’s “Eastbound and Down”.
Check out this old photo of Ryan from his days as a linebacker coach with the Patriots:
For comparison, here’s Powers:
Uncanny, isn’t it?
As we kick off the 2013 NFL season tonight, we are graced with this incredible set of NFL team sigils, in the style of the house sigils from Game of Thrones. For those of you who are geeks for both the NFL and GOT (like us), this is pure nirvana.
Created by internet hero DJroomba, aka Tim Proby, the complete gallery of all 32 teams (even the Jets) can be found here, and includes several variations for each club. We’ve posted some of our favorites below, and saved the best for last in the Patriots and Browns. Enjoy your new desktop wallpapers!
MORE NFL TEAM SIGILS AFTER THE JUMP
Rolling Stone magazine published a fascinating, detailed article about the life and times of Aaaron Hernandez on Wednesday, entitled “The Gangster In The Huddle”, which includes several explosive revelations about the troubled Patriots TE who now faces murder charges in the shooting death of Odin Lloyd.
Among all the disturbing details revealed about Hernandez in the piece, perhaps the most alarming is the notion that Hernandez had begun using PCP – or angel dust – regularly over the last year, and the resulting paranoia had driven him to carry a gun with him everywhere:
In exclusive conversations with Rolling Stone, those friends, who insisted they not be named, say Hernandez was using the maniacal drug angel dust, had fallen in with a crew of gangsters and convinced himself that his life was in danger, carrying a gun wherever he went.
The article claims that Hernandez had cut himself off from his family and teammates, was running with a “cohort of thugs” and that Bill Belichick was so fed up with his thuggish behavior that he was one misstep from being cut by the Patriots. The profile goes on to suggest that previously, Hernandez’ college coach at the University of Florida, Urban Meyer, may have helped cover up failed drug tests and at least two violent incidents in which Aaron was involved – an assault and a drive-by shooting outside a local bar. In fact, since 2007, Hernandez has been linked to shootings of six different people in four separate incidents, where three of the victims were murdered.
But the PCP accusation may be the most disconcerting, and may best help to explain how an NFL athlete with the world in the palm of his hands could throw it all away over a seemingly trivial nightclub beef with a friend.
“Don’t matter what it’s about: Aaron’s out of his mind,” says one friend of the family. “He’s been twisted on dust now for more than a year, which is when all of this crazy shit started.”
Definitely take the time to check out the full article. It’s worth the read.
As expected, the NFL Owners voted to abolish the infamous “Tuck Rule” by an overwhelming margin today, bringing an end to one of the more controversial rules interpretations in recent history. The owners also voted to ban ball carriers from initiating contact with the crown of their helmets in the open field - a rule that should prove to be wildly controversial in its own right over the coming weeks and months.
As we know, the Tuck Rule was made famous in 2001 when Tom Brady lost the ball after starting a passing motion – but while bringing the ball back down toward his body – during a snowy playoff game against the Oakland Raiders. It allowed a fumbled ball that is moving forward in the hand of a quarterback to be ruled an incomplete pass … an interpretation that flew in the face of common sense every time it was applied. Well after more than 11 years, reason has finally prevailed, and the rule was eliminated by a 29-1-2 vote.
For their part, the victims of that call – the Raiders – have responded to the rule change via Twitter, en Espanol:
Adios, Tuck Rule.
— OAKLAND RAIDERS (@RAIDERS) March 20, 2013
With the Patriots in London this week for today’s game against the Rams - as part of Roger Goodell’s ongoing plan for global domination - demonstrative tight end Rob Gronkowski already became a hit with local fans when he spiked the microphone at a pre-game press conference.
And when Gronkowski scored a touchdown in the second quarter of the Patriots 45-7 rout of St. Louis at Wembley Stadium, he further endeared himself to the home crowd when he paid tribute to British culture by doing his own unique version of the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace … finished off by his patented Gronk spike, of course:
Video of the play HERE.
Gronkowski went on to have a monster day, finishing with 146 yards and 2 TDs … and after his second score, Gronk showed off his anglophile side once again as he munched on fish & chips and downed a pint in the back of the endzone.
No, not really.
On opening night of the 2012 NFL Season, this video from The NOC - which pretty much nails the stereotypes for every team’s fan base in about 3 seconds each – seemed fitting.
Some are funnier and more accurate than others, but they save the best (or worst, as it were) for last with the Patriots fans.
On Wednesday, the NFL sent out a memo to all 32 teams to let everyone know that the replacement referees will start the season on September 5th. In it, the league’s Vice President of Football Operations Ray Anderson attempted to claim with a straight face that the current replacement refs are doing an adequate job, and that they feel confident entering the season with a second-rate collection of former Canadian and Lingerie Football League officials:
In light of the current state of negotiations, we will have replacement crews on the field when the regular season begins. The replacements have undergone extensive training and evaluation, and have shown steady improvement during the preseason. We will continue the training with each crew and they will work as much of the regular season as necessary. The replacement officials are dedicated and enthusiastic, have worked very hard to improve, and have persevered despite the attacks on their qualifications and performance. We are all grateful for their service to the NFL.
Obviously, Ray hasn’t been watching the same pre-season games that we all have, because these replacements are clearly not ready for primetime. And despite being directed by the NFL to remain silent on the subject, players and coaches throughout the league have been vocal in their support of the full-time refs. There is a genuine concern from many parties about the integrity of the game – and particularly player safety – if these clowns are allowed to officiate a regular season contest, when everyone is going full-speed, and there is actually something at stake. The league says it will attempt to mitigate this by placing veteran former referees in the booth as “officiating supervisors”, who will attempt to guide the replacements, as well as with expanded use of instant replay on all turnovers and scoring plays.
With the labor negotiations between the league and the NFLRA at a standstill, this is hopefully just a tactic to put pressure on the regular refs to accept their offer and get back to work. But in the mean time, these replacement referees continue to make a mockery of the game, and only prove to strengthen the NFLRA’s stance that the full-time professionals are desperately needed back on the field.
In response to the memo, the NFLRA issued their own statement:
“We are not surprised that the NFL was not going to reach out to us,” the NFLRA said in a statement. “However, this is consistent with the NFL’s negotiating strategy, which has been ‘take it or leave it’ and lock them out. It now appears the NFL is willing to forego any attempt to reach a deal in the last seven (7) days before opening night. It is unfortunate because the Referees want to get back on the field. Our members have been engaged in extensive preparations and are ready to go.
“If the NFL is serious about negotiating, we are ready, but we can’t negotiate with ourselves.”
During last night’s Giants-Patriots snoozefest, the replacements put forth yet another example of their “dedicated and enthusiastic” work … one that starkly contradicts what the league would have you believe about their state of preparedness for the rigors of an NFL season.
VIDEO & BONUS GIF AFTER THE JUMP
No matter your personal feelings about Michael Vick, there’s one thing we can all agree on: the guy is about as injury prone an NFL QB as we’ve ever seen.
At just 6’0″ and 215 lbs, Vick is certainly one of the more electrifying athletes in the game, but his relatively small stature (and penchant for leaving the pocket) has made him a frequent target for big hits, and a regular fixture on the injury report. In fact, Vick has only completed a full 16-game season once in his entire nine-year career. Most recently, he missed 3 games last season with broken ribs, and injured his thumb in the pre-season opener last week. And after exiting his second pre-season game in as many weeks with an injury tonight, 2012 is not off to a good start for the Eagles’ starting quarterback.
In the first quarter of tonight’s Eagles-Patriots game, Vick was drilled by Patriots LB Jermaine Cunningham, forcing him out of the game and to the locker room for X-rays on his ribs. The hit took place on Philadelphia’s second possession when Vick dropped back on a play-action, felt pressure and spun around in the pocket before launching a deep pass downfield. After absorbing the hit, Vick immediately held his left side and knelt on the field while being tended to by medical personnel before walking off under his own power. [VIDEO HERE]
The Eagles have reported via their Twitter account that the X-rays on Vick’s ribs have come back negative … much to the relief of Eagles fans and fantasy football owners everywhere. Regardless, he’s just too fragile to feel like you can really count on him for a full season. I’m setting the over-under on games finished this year at ten.
GIF AFTER THE JUMP
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick celebrated his 60th birthday this week, but this photo from Belichick family archives shows the dark overlord of NFL coaches during gentler times, as a six-year-old child:
Basic math tells us the picture was taken in approximately 1958, and in it we find young William, pre-hoodie, sitting and smiling in the front of the stands at what was likely the U.S. Naval Acadamy, where his father was an assistant football coach.
If you look closely in his eyes, behind that innocent grin, you can tell little Bill is already putting together defensive schemes in his head.