As usual, it’s time to see how our predictions went. I was sicker than sick and in bed all weekend, so I’m going on internet reports and the box score here.
Our prediction: Texans 17, Seahawks 35.
RESULT: Texans 38, Seahawks 41
Verdict: NO. We were up until the very end, when the defense surrendered a last-second touchdown, because of course it did. Like every team in the BOB era, we beat the bad teams and lose to the good ones. The Seahawks are good. Gee, ya think they’re going to go to Jimmy Graham in crunch time? Mike Vrabel apparently didn’t.
Our prediction: “Mike Vrabel will once again blitz like Rommel on speed”
RESULT: Looks that way, with predictable results. Russell Wilson’s pass chart shows lots of short throws for easy completions, especially on the right side.
Our prediction: “Bill O’Brien will make a potentially game-changing boneheaded call sometime in the third quarter”
RESULT: This one was a gimme. BOB always makes a stupid call in the third quarter. He’s BOB, and that, along with “handing the ball to the smallest RB on the roster on fourth-and-inches,” is just what BOB does.
Our prediction: “Duane Brown will play.”
RESULT: Yep. Though he might well be back on a plane to Seattle tomorrow. That would be a fairly Rick Smithy thing to do – play the guy once, risking injury while not shaking off much rust, against the team you’re about to trade him to…
Can the Rick Smithiness of a decision be quantified? I don’t know how the Pro Football Focus guys do their statistical jujitsu – I was an English major – but we can at least get a rough comparison going. Here is my first stab at quantifying the Rick Smithiness of any decision, on a scale of 1-10.
- (the least Rick Smithy decision): Drafting a guy from a real school with starting experience at his projected NFL position; signing a free agent at a position of need before the start of training camp; basically, doing anything a normal GM of a real football team would do.
- Re-signing everyone on what has consistently been the worst special teams unit in football, especially when they are, collectively, 452 years old.
- Trading a backup quarterback who is not demonstrably worse than your starter for a 7th round draft pick.
- (approaching baseline Rick Smithiness) Signing a clearly washed-up player to the kind of contract he would’ve reasonably gotten in his prime
- (baseline Rick Smithiness) Spending more than one draft pick on tight ends, then signing a few more in the offseason just in case.
- Spending high draft picks on “project” players from tiny schools nobody but the 200 students who actually go there have heard of.
- Forgetting that entire positions, e.g. “strong safety,” exist in the game of football.
- Signing a quarterback, sight unseen, to a $37 million contract.
- Botching a draft so badly that five of nine picks never played a snap for you, and one of the few that actually played is Ryan Griffin.
- (peak Rick Smithiness) Looking at your QB situation in the offseason and saying “Brian Hoyer, Ryan Mallett, Tom Savage… yeah, we’re good.” Or your offensive line and going “who needs tackles anyway? Or guards for that matter?” Or your defensive backfield – which is, collectively, 852 years old and can be timed with a sundial – and saying “we got this.” Or….
Our prediction: “CBS will cut repeatedly to that one shot of Bob McNair looking like he just got a Sriracha enema while Rick Smith tries to melt into the furniture, because CBS hates us.”
RESULT: They showed that shot all right, I’m sure, but only because of this:
Verdict: Who cares? At this point, I’m pretty much done with pro football. This shit isn’t going to stop. ESPN, Roger Goodell, the players’ unions… they’ve all doubled down on the politics. I, like most Americans, watch sports to get away from politics. Our Betters in the media, academia, both political parties, etc. have decided that we shall be made to care….. but they forgot that TVs have an “off” button. There’s lots of stuff I should be doing on Sundays – cleaning up the house, going to church, getting ready for work on Monday, spending time with the wife and kids. Blowing three hours and thirty bucks on greasy food in a sports bar is, when you think about it for a second, a fairly Rick Smithy allocation of resources.
I’ll still do some predictions, and keep making fun of Battle Red Blog – that’s a public service to the English language – but no, Roger Goodell et al, I can’t be made to care. It’s been fun, guys, and I wish y’all the best, but I’ve got better things to do with my free time.