Sunday NFL and Ryder Cup Open Thread

With a great day of football on tap, as well as America actually leading in the Ryder Cup for a change, I have the great pleasure of introducing a new feature to NewsBusters.

Joe Concha is a freelance writer who's contributed to,, as well as the New York Sun.

Every Sunday, Joe will get us ready for some football with his own unique style of mixing sports with politics and liberal media bias. Enjoy:

Politics and Pigskin: Week 3 in the NFL
Joe Concha

An unscientific NewsBusters poll says that 82.7% of our readers love the NFL, so why not offer a weekly preview on weekends while MSNBC is mostly in prison doc mode (thereby taking away an avalanche of comedic material that is so biased it practically writes itself)?

As Jody Miller says at the top of her NewsBusted webcasts, let's get started.

Gus Frerotte gets the nod at QB for the Vikings this week, benching Tavaris Jackson who is as effective as the Dems' offshore drilling plan that calls for exploring for oil fifty miles or more off the coast (where, of course, there is none).

Jack Cafferty -- the Olbermann of CNN with the exception that he thankfully only gets to run 2-minute drills as opposed to KO's hour of Obama infomercials -- would likely see racism in Gus getting the nod. Let's just take what Smilin' Jack said on Wednesday and replace "McCain" with "Frerotte" and "Obama" with "Jackson":

"The differences between Tavaris Jackson and Gus Frerotte couldn't be better defined. Tavaris wants to change the Vikings one-dimensional attack. Frerotte used to play for Washington and is a Bush-league quarterback. Yet the coaches bench Jackson. Doesn't make sense unless it's race".

See? You can make anything about race if you really want to.

The Giants host the retro-bad-Bengals at the Meadowlands on Sunday. In other words, the defending Super Bowl champs move to 3-0 without a sweat. And they've done it without the services of their Super Bowl hero, David Tyree.

You remember him? The guy who caught Eli's desperation pass on the Giants against his helmet winning drive during the Super Bowl?

Well, he's now the Aaron Boone of New York sports lore. Greatness bestowed upon him one minute...on the back of a milk carton next to Dan Abrams' picture the next.

Good to see Eli's brother get back on track last week late in a must-win against the Vikes, but it's impossible not to say that Peyton suddenly looks as old as Archie Manning these days.

And who would think even nine months ago that Peyton would be referred to as, "Eli's brother"?

So who has more job security?

Raiders Head coach Lane "I could be flipping burgers tomorrow" Kiffin or Joe "Hillary, take my job...please!" Biden?

Despite some in the media following Obama's lead in declaring our economy is the same as it was during the Great Depression (funny...I must not walk to work where all the soup lines are, and how do all those NFL games keep selling out if everyone is broke?), it appears that the video game industry is AIG-proof.

The latest numbers say sales of video game hardware and software were up again last month to the tune of nearly one billion dollars in revenue. The rise is primarily due to the popularity of the newly released game "Madden NFL 09" by EIA Sports.

So maybe instead of paying off that pesky mortgage, sub-prime recipients are making their thumbs arthritic by pretending to play so much football on games they can ill-afford.

Speaking of arthritic thumbs, it's nice to know that the media thinks that only McCain is running negative ads on Obama.

It appears that whole ad about McCain not being able to type due to his injuries while in captivity never happened...

...much like that whole Aaron Rodgers implosion never happening like it was supposed to in Green Bay.

Can you believe this guy? He steps right into quarterbacking the Packers, which is kind of like being a community organizer except that you have actual responsibilities, and all he's done is make everyone forget about the great Brett Favre in two games (4 TDs, 0 INTs, 117.8 passer rating). Rodgers is not unlike Favre in terms of his ability to improvise...
and is very unlike Favre in terms of throwing the ball to the wrong team.

Big test against the Cowboys at home this week, who look unstoppable on offense but as clueless as the militants on The View on defense (except not quite as angry). Either way, this game will likely break all Sunday Night football ratings records for NBC, which Olbermann will naturally use as leverage to get Rachel Maddow her own post-game show. Rachel's first topic? A cynical analysis of the Arizona Cardinals never winning a Super Bowl during John McCain's tenure in the Senate...

Speaking of NBC, loved the SNL skit with Tina Fey as Sarah Palin (it saved an otherwise-unwatchable show with Michael Phelps hosting...who should clearly consider teaching swimming lessons at the local YMCA instead).

It begs the question: Does Fey -- a huge Hillary fan -- want the eeeevil Republicans to win in November? A GOP victory could do for her career what George H.W. Bush did for Dana Carvey's and what eight years of Bill Clinton did for Darrell Hammond's W-2. Does money trump principles like it does with most free agents in sports?

Whoever wins the Presidency, his first order of business should not be the economy or education. Rather, it should be to immediately demand that the Rams go back to wearing the coolest uniforms on earth. The switch to navy and gold from blue and yellow made absolutely zero sense. I mean, they won a Super Bowl with those classic unis, but allowed some marketing genius to change their entire identity since then. The result: Choking away the Super Bowl the following season after the switch, followed by early exits in the playoffs and now what we're currently seeing (See: The worst team in all of sports who will win as many games against playoff teams as the completely-unlikable Chris Kofinis will win as anyone's communications director).

The message: Never, ever mess with karma.

Week 3 not-for-profit predictions:

Giants -13 over Bengals
Chiefs +5.5 over Atlanta
Bills -8.5 over Raiders
Texans +5 over Titans
Redskins -3 over Cardinals
Dolphins +12.5 over Patriots
Bears -3 over Bucs
Vikings -3 over Panthers
Rams +10 over Seahawks
49ers -4 over Lions
Broncos -5.5 over Saints
Eagles -3 over Steelers
Jags +5 over Colts
Browns +2 over Ravens
Packers +3 over Cowboys
Jets +9 over Chargers (and condolences to the millions who took Tomlinson first in their Fantasy drafts)

The first two weeks of the NFL season have already been the most exciting in recent memory. So if you're suffering from election fatigue, or those hacked Sarah Palin emails aren't doing it for you from a scandalous-entertainment perspective, sit back and enjoy watching something on TV without, for once, being told how to think.

Joe Concha is a freelance writer based in New York who has a slight affinity for the NFL. Email questions or comments to

Thanks, Joe.

Sports Open Thread
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