Happy National Cheeseburger Day Lard

Good Afternoon, Broncos fans! Today is National Cheeseburger Day, so be sure to celebrate with your favorite version of the iconic American food.

A Hamburger Today is marking the occasion by giving away a signed copy of George Motz's Hamburger America. Motz's show Burger Land, which reairs on the Travel Channel next Wednesday and Thursday, is worth checking out.

My favorite version of our national treasure (favorite meal, really) is a rare burger with cheddar at J.G. Melon, along with their crispy cottage fries; the photo below is from my most recent trip there.

J.G. Melon is unfortuntely located on Manhattan's stuffier-than-stuffy Upper East Side, and the service isn't exactly top-shelf. But there's no better burger for my money.

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More from Replacement Refs Gone Wild

Replacement ref reportedly told LeSean McCoy, ‘I need you for my fantasy team!’
sports.yahoo.com

Now, we have another conflict case—and if this one is true, it’s a major stab at the integrity of the game. On Monday, Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy was talking with Anthony Gargano and Ike Reese of Philly’s 94WIP radio when the subject of replacement officials came up. “During the game, they made like a bad call or something, the ref, and I see Ray Lewis pump his chest up, trying to scare him. Don’t you know [the ref] started stuttering? I’m like, ‘what’s this?!’”

Well, most people would stutter if Ray Lewis was in their face. McCoy then had a more disturbing reveation. “They’re like fans. I’ll be honest, they’re like fans. One of the refs was talking about his fantasy team, [and said], ‘McCoy, come on, I need you for my fantasy [team],’ Uhhh, what?”

It’s not known who the official was, or if the official was joking, but even the appearance of this kind of impropriety is absolutely ridiculous. The NFL used to have a strict policy against any sort of wagering among its officials for this exact reason; nobody wants the specter of a crooked game hanging over the league’s head. Nobody wants an NFL version of Tim Donaghy.

How long, Roger?  How long before you get the message?  How much longer are you going to jerk around with the NFLRA over what amounts to scraps for you and your buddies?

Greg Aiello and the NFL are full of it

Replacement officials taking heat
espn.go.com

“Officiating is never perfect. The current officials have made great strides and are performing admirably under unprecedented scrutiny and great pressure,” Aiello said in an email to The Associated Press. “As we do every season, we will work to improve officiating and are confident that the game officials will show continued improvement.”

Reached for comment Tuesday, Aiello told ESPN in an email “that we are looking at how to improve officiating for the long term, and that is an important part of the negotiations with the NFLRA.”

Spare us the bullshit, Greg.

The NFL just doesn’t care Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! You know, you never want to make it about the officials. It's petty, it's weak, and it's the mark of sore losers.

Especially when you turn the ball over four times within a quarter. Well, three times, if the referees had even the slightest clue on Knowshon Moreno's fumble.

See? There we go.

The story of Denver's 27-21 loss (Gamebook) was going to be Peyton Manning's three early interceptions, but the defense held Atlanta to just 10 points following those inexcusable gaffes.

From there, the Ginger Hammer's so-called "competent" replacement officials took over.

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Gut Reaction: Week 2 - Broncos @ Falcons

Peyton Manning said the Broncos are a work in progress.

Perhaps we should have believed him.

In Week 1, we all caught a case of Coltsahanta Virus--the feeling of invicibility that results from having Peyton Manning under center.  Unfortunately, it's a virus that hasn't been communicable since 2009.

It would be easy to blame this loss on a group of replacement referees that blew call after call after call--they actually referred to the Falcons as "red" at one point during a penalty.  The faster the league replaces the replacements, the better.  

Yet, this loss is mostly Manning's piece of work. You can't spin the loss any other way.  Despite a flurry of activity late in the fourth quarter, Manning floated several passes, turned the ball over three times in the first quarter, and often checked into poor audibles.

Get back to work, Peyton.  I believe you now.

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Open Thread: MNF Week 2 - Broncos @ Falcons

Inactive for Denver are CB Chris Harris, RB Ronnie Hillman, DT Sealver Siliga, WR Andre Caldwell, C/G Philip Blake, QB Caleb Hanie, and G Chris Kuper. Out for Atlanta are S Charles Mitchell, CB Terrence Johnson, C Joe Hawley, T Lamar Holmes, DE Jonathan Massaquoi, DE Cliff Matthews, and QB Dominique Davis.

The absence of Harris means Tony Carter will be Denver's nickel corner; Brock Osweiler will be Peyton Manning's backup with Hanie inactive, with Hillman and Caldwell again notable inactives. Key players in T Tyson Clabo and LB Sean Witherspoon had been listed as questionable for Atlanta but are active.

Enjoy the game everyone, and Go Broncos!

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Game Day Limerick: Atlanta Falcons

Matt Ryan never loses at home--so we're told.  That doesn't mean he avoids getting limericked.

We have Matty Ice at his home.
He can only play in that dome.
He’s in for a shock
when Champ picks the rock
and flashes tonight like he’s chrome. 

Give it your best shot, Broncos fans!  

Broncos/Falcons pre-game Lard

Good Evening, Broncos fans! Ron Jaworksi and Mike Ditka are siding with coach Greg Schiano regarding the end of the Giants/Tampa Bay game yesterday, when the Bucs defensive line crashed through with the Giants in victory formation.

But Will Brinson explains why Schiano is full of it when he says it's all about playing hard 100% of the time; or at least, the new NFL coach doesn't practice what he's preaching.

To wit, Schiano's team didn't try its hardest when the G-Men knelt to end the first half, and Schiano did not use all of his timeouts at the end of the game.

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Teammate confirms Jay Cutler is a prick(ly) quarterback

D.J. Moore criticizes Jay Cutler
espn.go.com

Chicago Bears cornerback D.J. Moore called teammate Jay Cutler’s actions in the team’s loss Thursday to the Green Bay Packers, “wrong,” saying Cutler “is what he is,” and, “he’s always been that way so I don’t expect him to change.”

Cutler was seen screaming at offensive tackle J’Marcus Webb and bumping into him on the sideline during the 23-10 loss. Webb had a tough game trying to block Clay Matthews, who had 3 1/2 of the Packers’ seven sacks. Cutler threw four interceptions.

People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones four interceptions.

Fat Camp: Introducing Cover 6

Happy Football Monday, friends.  Because I’m a swell guy, I decided to write a quick article about pass coverage relating to tonight’s game between the Broncos and the Falcons.  As we saw last week, the Chiefs got lit up, and I’m going to talk about why that happened, and what the Broncos should (and certainly will) do better.

In Week 1, the Chiefs were without their best CB Brandon Flowers, and their best pass rusher Tamba Hali.  That puts you at a disadvantage against a team with good passing weapons from the jump, especially a team like Atlanta, whose protection weakness at LT went unexploited.  The Chiefs were also seemingly very worried about the Atlanta running game, and they played eight in the box quite a bit. 

If you’re dropping the eighth man, you basically have two choices of coverage shells.  If you want to play zone, you can use a three-deep shell, and if you want to play a lot of man-to-man, you can used a one-deep shell.  The Chiefs chose the latter option a week ago, mostly using a very deep single-high safety, and man-to-man coverage.

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2014 Offseason

Offseason coverage