Mark it Zero

If you can’t sign Bane, Brandon Mebane is a good second choice

If you've ever followed the comic book hero Batman, you're no doubt aware of a fellow named Bane.

Bane was one of the Caped Crusader's strongest adversaries.   Raised in a South American prison and classically educated by a Jesuit priest, Bane acquired six languages by the time he broke out of prison as an adult.  During his prison stint, he was used as an experimental test subject for a drug known as "venom."   From the picture, you can see that it turned him into quite the physical specimen.

Some might say he was a renaissance man--that is, if you can get past the whole shanking guys in prison thing.

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Fight Club: Goodell versus Smith

There are eight rules of Fight Club. 

Roger Goodell and DeMaurice Smith have broken all of them, except one:

"Fights will go on as long as they have to."

Although all of us out here in fanville would prefer they simply followed rule one (don't talk about Fight Club!), it's been unavoidable.  For every one of Smith's biting and over-the-top punches, Goodell (and his lap dog Jeff Pash) have countered with a calculated yet Chicken Little-ish jab.

I've seen girl fights more exciting than this.  At least girls pull hair.

At this point in the process, what more is there to do than sit back, relax, sip some iced tea, wait for litigation, and try out our newest random quote generator?

Give it a whirl and see what happens when DeMaurice Smith and Roger Goodell say ridiculous things at the same time.  I've included 30 quotes from each, so have as many spins as you'd like.  Don't forget to laugh.  Feel free to even declare a winner if you'd like in the comments below.

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The Dude’s Mail Revue, weekend edition: Paige, white boys, and tasers

Dude's Mail Revue 400x145Fat Man writer TJ “The Dude” Johnson posts The Dude’s Mail Revue on Thursdays whenever the hell he gets around to it.  He takes your questions and gets your opinion about the state of the Broncos and the NFL. You wanna tie the room together?  Or say what you'd like about the tenets of national socialism? Drop TJ a question: tjthedudejohnson@gmail.com.

(NOTE: Marmots were harmed in the writing of this Revue)

TJ, I read your stupid column last week blasting Woody Paige for suggesting that Kyle Orton never offered encouragement to Tim Tebow.   Let me jump completely into bed with Woody here.  You are guilty of cherry picking.  You took one shot of Orton on the sideline and used it to suggest that Tebow and Orton were fast friends during Weeks 16 and 17.   That's ridiculous.  Paige is onto something here.  I can feel it.  Orton is a sulker.  You should be ashamed of yourself. You call yourself "The Dude?" I don't like your name and I don't like your blog.  

-- Roy Hardman Oliver, San Paulo, Brazil

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Mindfreak: if you’re so smart, why aren’t you a general manager?

Last week, as I was holding down my couch springs, I lavished some big-time praise on Brian Xanders for his work during the 2011 NFL Draft.

He deserved it.  The Broncos went into the draft with seven picks; they came out with nine. 

Statistically, Xanders improved the Broncos' ability to land more starters.

You'll notice that I mentioned none of players' names to come to this conclusion.  That's because I agree 100% with Kerry J. Byrne wrote last week:

You know how most analysts do it: They pretend they watched every college football game of the past three seasons, toss out clichés about various schemes, or which players "set the edge" and have "good motors" and then try to guess which will succeed or fail at the next level.

 

Good luck with that.

 

The truth is that nobody knows who's going to succeed or fail -- not us, not the draft "experts" on TV and certainly not the GMs making the decisions on draft day.

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Why I’ll never be a hockey dad

This evening, I was scanning the list of college free agents the Broncos could sign.  As I started ranking the defensive tackles like they were part of some board game, I suddenly remembered something: almost all of these guys have probably dreamed for years about playing in the NFL.

Then I was struck by something else.

You have to be crazy to want to play in the NFL.

Here are a few figures from the NCAA that might surprise you:

  • Approximately 6.0 percent, or less than one in 16 of all high school senior boys playing interscholastic football will go on to play football at a NCAA member institution.
  • Approximately one in 50, or 1.7 percent of NCAA senior football players will get drafted by a National Football League (NFL) team.
  • 8 in 10,000, or approximately 0.08 percent of high school senior boys playing interscholastic football will eventually be drafted by an NFL team.

Take comfort, however, that these same high school seniors have a 1 in 10,000 chance of being struck by lightning sometime in their life.  So the odds are better to get to the NFL.  But not by much.  

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Woody Paige lied about Kyle Orton, and here’s the proof

Readers of It's All Over, Fat Man! know I was highly critical of Kyle Orton's play last season: his struggles on 3rd down were consistent themes in my game reactions.  You can find all sixteen of them here if you care to read them.   

Woody Paige, on the other hand, won't keep his criticism of Orton where it belongs--on the field of play.  When Paige started his smear campaign to drive Orton out of Denver, I first ignored it.  I told myself Paige was just trying to sell controversy.  After all, controversy means clicks; clicks means ads; ads mean revenue.  You see, part of me has a soft spot for Paige--I've been satirizing his mail bag for almost two years.  

But enough is enough.  Woody Paige is a liar.

It's easy to find the proof.

Part of the sewer-strewn narrative that Paige has been spewing is the idea that Kyle Orton is a bad guy and hates Tim Tebow.  In fact, on January 19th of this year, he wrote in his column:

After Tebow became the starter, Orton sulked on the sidelines and never tried to assist or encourage him.

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Brian Xanders improves the odds and gets a ton of manly love

Using probability theory and 20 years of draft data, last week we calculated the odds of the Broncos nabbing four three-year starters out of this year's draft.

Our conclusion was that they had a 20.37% chance.

This calculation was based on both the total number of picks (that's seven, Jeff Legwold) and the position of each pick itself.

Brian Xanders had other ideas, however.  He not only looked the part of GM (sporting a tailored navy suit in the Broncos' war room), but he parlayed seven picks into nine.

Forget the silly and meanlingless points charts that NFL teams supposedly use to evaluate trades.  Let's get to the heart of the issue, and the goal the Broncos had going into this draft, shall we?

Did the X-Man improve the probability that the Broncos would get four starters out of it?

Intuitively, you probably have a sense of the answer, but let's look at the numbers once again.

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A Second Helping of Von Miller & the Aaron Curry Myth

Some men are born with great blog entries; others have great blog entries thrust upon them.

The latter is the case today.  One of our staunchest legionaries, Fat Man member NCM42, recently asked:

How much do Von Miller and Aaron Curry compare?

It's a great question.  Expect to hear it often, especially from fans whose team didn't select Miller.  

Implicit in this question is the fear that MIller won't live up to his billing as the #2 overall pick. That's because Aaron Curry, the 4th pick overall two years ago, hasn't become a dominante force in the NFL.

On the surface, the two players seem similar: both were freakishly athletic 3-4 outside linebackers; both were the can't-miss players of their drafts; both were considered low-character risks.  The most important correlation, however, is that they were both drafted by 4-3 teams to play the strong-side linebacker position, something neither had done before.

In short, the fear is that a position change could spell BUST, without using the letters O-A-K-L-A-N-D.  

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Gut Reaction: Broncos picks on film

You've probably seen highlight reels of the Broncos' draft picks on ESPN or NFL Network.  While highlight reels are fun to watch, they rarely tell the story of a draft pick. 

So I decided to hit YouTube for some actual tape of all of the picks and put them into one place.

I hope you enjoy.

I've tried to keep my own commentary to a minimum.  As you can see from our Chewing the Fat series in the last day, I really have been disappointed in the Broncos for not addressing the defensive line.  But the truth is, trying to pass judgment on a draft immediately is somewhat foolish (albeit great fun).  We are talking about 23-year-old kids here.  It's impossible to know how these picks are going to pan out.  Further, as fans, we simply aren't privy to what went on during workouts with the Broncos.  Marvin Austin's workout and interview may have told the Broncos more than any tape possibly could.  

Do I wish the Broncos were sitting wtih Marvin Austin and Stephen Paea on their roster tonight? Absolutely.

Could the Broncos have done the right thing by passing on them? You bet.  

Half the fun will be finding out.

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Mindfreak: The odds of finding four starters in the draft

Brian Xanders and John Elway have both said they want to come away with four starters from the 2011 Draft.

It's certainly an ambitious goal, and one appreciates Xanders and Elway setting the bar so high without resorting to meaningless slogans.

But is it likely?

Earlier in the week, Dave Krieger took a shot at pointing out how difficult a task Xanders and Elway have in front of them.  His conclusion?

Optimism, naivete and, let's be honest, pure fantasy are always in unlimited supply around the NFL draft.

Kreiger based his conclusion on some decent evidence--namely, that Mike Shanahan and Josh McDaniels had limited draft success.

What do the numbers actually show us?  Is Krieger correct?

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