The Smorgasbord of Week 8

In a weekend that saw some crazy story lines in the NFL it was tough to find one that triumphed over the rest, until about 2 hours ago. The Minnesota Vikings decided to waive Randy Moss one day after the Vikings lost to the New England Patriots, Moss’ former team. Moss, a surefire first ballot hall of famer, can now be picked up by any team in the league in an assembly line format based on record, starting with the Bills and ending with the Patriots. Maybe Brad Childress, the head coach of the Vikings, felt he was losing control of the locker room to big name talent, i.e. Moss and Favre, and wanted to flex his own muscle, or possibly there was a rift between Moss and teammates, perhaps the Vikings brass didn’t like the unsatisfactory effort Moss displayed on the field Sunday and his post-game rant at the podium. No matter what the excuse is this decision doesn’t make much sense. The Vikings just traded away a third round draft choice to bring Randy back to Minnesota, where he started his career, and now they just dump him like a scrub? It is a guarantee that Moss will be picked up by another NFL team, but the specific team is still a mystery. My best guess is the San Diego Chargers, a team desperate for a number one wide receiver due to Vincent Jackson’s hold out, but also has a chance of winning in a relatively cookie cutter division, something that is important in the scheme of Randy Moss actually trying when he steps onto the field.

As for the wild weekend itself, some of the story lines that were generated yesterday are almost unfathomable to conceive. As they say, you can’t make this stuff up! The New Orleans Saints, a team that couldn’t seem to get their act together over the last few weeks and were shelved by the Browns, were able to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers. Yes, the same Steelers that sat atop almost every power rankings list in recent weeks; were able to go 3-1 without their number one quarterback, and have a defense that scares almost anyone. While the Saints don’t look like the team that won the Super Bowl, which is a result of their depleted backfield with injuries to Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas, they will most likely use this most recent win as a turning point in their season.

The impressive Detroit Lions, who’s record does not show their ability to be competitive in every game, not only beat the Washington Redskins yesterday, but were able to get Donovan McNabb benched in the process, in favor of Rex Grossman! For clarification purposes only, Rex Grossman is famous for being the worst quarterback on a Super Bowl team, albeit a losing effort against the Colts, thanks to Rex throwing one of the easiest interceptions in recent history. Remember when all those “experts” said the Philadelphia Eagles would regret trading McNabb away? Every Eagles fan was simultaneously screaming, “I told you so”, in the fourth quarter.

When you’re talking about unimpressive it doesn’t get worse than the Buffalo Bills, the doormat of the league without any real chance to escape that fate. For a team that is still looking for it’s first win losing in overtime in back to back weeks, to the Baltimore Ravens and the Kansas City Chiefs, can be either a positive or negative. Positive in the fact that it means the Bills are being competitive, but negative because it is increasingly more frustrating that they can’t pull one out. The Ravens and Chiefs are both atop of their respective divisions, which can lead to the possible deduction that the Bills have figured out how to play relatively good football. However, it can also lead to the obvious conclusion that both first place teams overlooked the Bills and didn’t prepare for a team that they assumed was an easy win.

Remember when the sexy Super Bowl pick was the Dallas cowboys, especially considering that the Super Bowl is in Dallas this year? Well that pick has backfired for anyone who made it. The boys of big D are off to their worst start since 1989, and on top of which have to swallow the utterly embarrassing loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on their home field yesterday. Without Tony Romo the offense looked stagnant, but more importantly, the defense was shredded for 5 total touchdowns by David Garrard, a career high for the Jacksonville quarterback.

One post-script: In non-surprising news, Favre started his 292nd straight game but was unable to finish, and was yet again considered as the greatest iron man in the NFL. Did I mention the Vikings lost?

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