Archive for December, 2010

2011 New Year’s Resolutions Around the Gridiron

We have been gone for a few days, squeezing out the last of the holiday festivities before getting back to reality.  As we head into 2011, we have made our list of resolutions, hoping to accomplish at least a few of the things we long to do this coming year! 

In that spirit, we offer the following New Year’s resolutions for some of our favorite (and not so favorite) football-related individuals and others from 2010.

Mike Shanahan

I resolve to faithfully read the “Miss Manners” advice column so I can learn the meaning of respect and apply it to those around me, particularly legendary quarterbacks who have earned it. 

I resolve to go to my local Barnes & Noble to purchase “Coaching Football for Dummies” in hopes that I can learn SOMETHING useful to salvage my professional career.

The New York Jets

We resolve to hire Strength and Conditioning coaches who work on OUR players and not the other team’s players.

We resolve to recognize that women are more than just Barbie Dolls and can actually contribute to sports.

Brett Favre

I resolve to get rid of my cell phone.

I resolve to take the hint from the injuries Gods and finally retire for REAL.

Randy Moss

I resolve to keep all thoughts about the superb abilities of former coaches and teammates tucked away securely in my head, especially during post-game press conferences.

I resolve to keep all comments regarding catered foods and canines to myself.

Roger Goodell

I resolve to keep Vince Lombardi from turning in his grave by never postponing games due to snow and wind.

I resolve to keep the word “Wussie” from ever being associated with the NFL again.

I resolve to keep the NFL from turning into the National Flag League by concentrating on REAL player safety issues instead of legitimate hard hits.

Cam Newton

I resolve to never listen to my father’s advice.

I resolve to take lots of pics with my Heisman, since I will undoubtedly be returning it within the next few years.

Ohio State

We resolve to stop being an NFL player factory and at least APPEAR to provide an education.

We resolve to duct tape our President’s mouth whenever he attempts to discuss football.

Eli Manning

I resolve to stop giving the camera that Gomer Pyle  “Gaaw-aawl-ly” look when I throw an interception.

I resolve to call my big brother and get advice on how to transform my naïve country boy persona into one fitting a New York quarterback.

NCAA

We resolve to fairly enforce our rules and not allow players from big football programs (read Auburn and Ohio State) to get off the hook.

Tucker Carlson

I resolve to actually practice the Christianity I profess and learn that forgiveness is one of its tenets.

I resolve to never speak about football, or any other sport, again.

I resolve to loosen my bow tie, in hopes that it sends oxygen to my brain so that I think before I speak.

Michael Vick

I resolve to finish my story book-like comeback with a fairy tale ending and take my team to the Super Bowl.

I resolve to continue to be THE most exciting player in the NFL while showing the world that redemption is truly possible.

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MERRY CHRISTMAS!

We here at gridironglamourgirl would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas!  For the next day or so, we will be enjoying the festivities, but will be back soon to bring you the latest from the gridiron.

Happy Holidays!  Eat, drink and be merry!

-Your Gridironglamourgirl Team

Things That Make You Go “Hmmmm”…

Well, the NCAA once again has us scratching our heads and saying, “huh?”.  After ruling earlier this month that Heisman winner Cam Newton’s father was involved in a “pay to play” scheme, the NCAA ruled that the Auburn QB was unaware of the scheme and therefore eligible to play.  It is hard to believe that Cam did not know about his father’s actions, but that is indeed what the NCAA ruled at the time.

Now, just weeks later, the NCAA announced that 6 Ohio State University players committed NCAA bylaw violations by selling memorabilia.  The players sold their Big Ten Championship rings, personal and team awards, jerseys and cleats.  Several of the players also received tattoos at discounted rates in exchange for their personal autographs.

Tradition is an integral part of college football, especially in a high powered program like OSU.  It is disheartening that these players have such little regard for what the memorabilia they sold represents.  Selling a championship ring or the “gold pants” charm that OSU players receive if they beat rival Michigan smacks of irreverence.  Even if the players were unaware that selling such items violated NCAA rules (which is quite hard to believe), didn’t it feel just plain WRONG??!

The NCAA announced that quarterback Terrelle Pryor, running back Daniel Herron, wide receiver DeVier Posey, offensive lineman Mike Adams and defensive lineman Solomon Thomas will be suspended for the first 5 games of the 2011 season.  A sixth player, Jordan Whiting, will miss the first game.  In addition, the players will have to repay the University for the Items they sold and for the free or discounted benefits they received. 

At first glance, these penalties seem fair.  But the NCAA also ruled that these same players can play in the January 4th Sugar Bowl versus Arkansas!  If there is enough evidence to suspend the players for 5 games next season, what possible justification is there for playing in a bowl game in just a few weeks?  The NCAA provided an “explanation” about their ruling, saying in part that the players “did not receive adequate rules education during the time period the violations occurred.”  Are we really supposed to believe that, given the stringent NCAA  rules and guidelines that they were certainly made aware of as student-athletes, that they did not think selling their OSU jerseys was a violation?!

Pryor and Posey have been discussed as potential early round draft selections following next season.  Rather than miss a large portion of their collegiate season and have their draft value decline, it is likely they would simply enter the draft this year.  Now they can play in the Sugar Bowl, enter the draft and basically avoid the NCAA’s punishment.   Perhaps if the Buckeyes defeat Arkansas they can earn a championship ring to sell once they enter the draft in the next few months.   Like the decision regarding Cam Newton’s eligibility, this NCAA ruling defies common sense.

T.O. May G-O???

If the rumors are true, the Cincinnati Bengals may say goodbye to wide receiver Terrell Owens at the end of this season.  T.O. was placed on Injured Reserve after undergoing knee surgery on Monday, ending his 2010 season. 

T.O. signed a one year, 2 million dollar contract with the Bengals.  He has had one of his best seasons in years, with 9 touchdowns and 72 receptions for nearly 1000 yards.  But despite Owens playing well, the Bengals have had a miserable 3-11 season. 

It is likely that Owens’ public criticism of the coaching staff is what may ultimately keep him from returning to the Bengals.  Recently, on his T. Ocho Show, Owens said

“I think there’s underachieving from the top down.  You start with the owner, you start with the coaches. And obviously we as players, we are a product of what the coaches are coaching us throughout the course of the week.  Of course, we have to go out there and play the game. But in order for us to do what we’re allowed to do at the best of our abilities, the coaches have to put the players in the best position.”

Earlier in the season T.O. also criticized the play calling.  But with the Bengals abysmal performance this season, the points he is making are valid.  While T.O. may not have chosen the most appropriate way to express his views, I think most Bengals fans agree with him.

Owens is one of the few bright spots in what has been a very dark season.  Dismissing him seems like a foolish decision and is quite indicative of the turmoil that is present in the Bengals organization.  Sure, Owens can be outspoken and a bit too blunt at times, but since he is personally performing well, it seems quite ludicrous to release him simply because he had said what everyone else already believes.

Just as I was about to buy a #81 Bengals jersey, it looks as though I should wait to see where T.O. ends up next season.  Since my closet already has Owens’ jerseys from the Eagles, Cowboys and Bills, adding a Bengals jersey seems frivolous.  Perhaps next season I can get yet another T.O. jersey – maybe one from the Rams?

“Fa la la la” Lemon Bars Make a Sweet Holiday Treat!

These final days leading to Christmas are hectic!   If you are like us, you are busy shopping, baking, cooking and cleaning.  Geez – this leaves so little time for football!  So, if you are looking for a super easy recipe, we have the perfect one for a sweet treat!  It is a nice departure from the traditional holiday cookie.  These lemon bars are luscious and one of our very favorite things to make this time of year.  We often create gift baskets or dessert trays for close family and friends and these mouth-watering bars are always a big hit!  The recipe uses simple ingredients that you most likely have on hand, so there is no need for an extra trip to the grocery store!

Ingredients:

Crust:

2 cups flour

1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar

1 cup butter

Topping:

4 eggs

2 cups sugar

1/3 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

Sift together the flour and confectioner’s sugar. Next, cut in the butter until the mixture clings together.  Press into a 13”x9” pan and bake 20-25 minutes (or until VERY lightly browned) in a preheated 350 degree oven.  As the crust is baking, assemble the topping by beating eggs together with the sugar and lemon juice.  Sift the ¼ cup of flour and baking powder together and stir into the egg mixture.  When crust is done, pour topping over baked crust and bake for an additional 25 minutes.  Remove from oven and sprinkle top with additional confectioner’s sugar.  Cool thoroughly before cutting into 24 squares.

These make a refreshing, yummy addition to your holiday dessert trays!  Enjoy!

Who Is This Year’s NFL MVP?

My love for Michael Vick is not a secret.  Despite being a Giants fan, Vick is one of my very favorite players, second only to Peyton Manning.  It is also not a secret that I am not a big fan of Tom Brady.  Is there a particular reason for my aversion towards Brady?  Not really.  It is just one of those irrational sports opinions that is inexplicable.  But to be fair, he is having one amazing season.

Yesterday’s unbelievable comeback by Vick and the Eagles against the Giants was one of the most exciting moments in the NFL this season.  After being pressured and sacked all game, Vick simply took charge and refused to be denied.  With just over 8 minutes to play in the game, he orchestrated a 28 point scoring frenzy that gave the Eagles a 38-31 victory. 

Vick has been such a dynamic force for the Eagles and is quickly becoming a fan favorite.  Last week, NFL.com announced Vick was in first place in Pro Bowl voting by fans.  Fan voting ends tonight, after Monday Night Football, and it will be interesting to see if Vick can maintain his top position, or if Tom Brady, who was in 2nd place, will overtake him.  Fan votes count for 1/3 of the total vote that will determine which players go to the Pro Bowl, while coaches and players each account for the additional 2/3. 

For the NFL’s MVP, the voting is done by 50 members of the Associated Press.  So who is likely to win this prestigious honor?  At this moment, it seems clear that Vick and Brady are the top contenders.  While I would love to see Vick win the award, I believe Brady will once again become the NFL’s MVP, just as he did in 2007.

Brady is the quintessential QB who plays with order and precision in a conventional way.  His quarterback rating is the highest in the league – an impressive 109.9.  This season, he’s thrown for over 3500 yards, 31 TDs and just 4 interceptions.  He helped the Patriots clinch a playoff spot and with home-field advantage, the Patriots have a good chance of making it to the Super Bowl.  If he wins the MVP award, no one can claim he did not earn it.

Vick, by contrast, makes the impossible happen with his unconventional, pure, raw talent.  Like Brady, his stats are impressive.  He holds a 103.6 QB rating and has thrown for over 2700 yards, 20 TDs and 5 INTs.   But what makes Vick a compelling candidate for MVP is the dual threat he poses for opponents.  There is simply no other QB with the ability to throw AND run as effectively.

Brady has the statistical edge this season, but for me, Vick is certainly much more fun to watch!  While I truly couldn’t argue with Brady winning the MVP this season, I do think Michael Vick and his comeback story make for a much more interesting choice.  Will voters look at Vick’s storybook-like season and give him the perfect ending by voting for him?  Or will some voters consider Vick’s off-field history and vote based more on morality than performance?  The more likely scenario will be that voters simply choose Tom Brady since his numbers do surpass Vick’s.  It would be the easy, predictable choice.

There have been 2 times when the NFL MVP award was shared.  In 1997, Brett Favre and Barry Sanders were co-MVPs and in 2003 Peyton Manning and Steve McNair shared the honor.  This year, with two high performing, yet totally different players vying for the MVP award, it seems to be a perfect solution to the dilemma that may be facing voters.  The preppy, All-American Tom Brady and the rough and tumble Michael Vick, who against all odds turned his life around.   Who would have ever thought they could have anything in common?  But this year, if voters do the right thing, perhaps they will share something in common – the NFL MVP award!

Twas the Weekend Before Christmas…

Twas the weekend before Christmas, when all through the teams

Not a creature was stirring, but some QBs were it seems!

There was quarterback drama hanging in the air

With some players wondering how they got there!

 Indeed some quarterbacks are quite stirred up at this time of the season.   Here is a glimpse of some of the hustle and bustle this weekend among a few of our favorite QBs.

Rookie QB Tim Tebow will make his first start today against Oakland.  Starter Kyle Orton has bruised ribs, so Tebow will head the Denver offense and try to turn around the 3-10 Broncos.  For Tebow, this opportunity is a reason to feel quite jolly this holiday season!

Donovan McNabb feels like he just got a visit from the Grinch.  Benched by Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan, McNabb has not only been told he is the 2nd string QB behind Rex Grossman, but that for the remaining two games he will be 3rd string.  If there was ever a “Grinch Who Stole Christmas” in the NFL, it is Shanahan and his Bah, Humbug disrespect he has shown the veteran QB.

For Brett Favre, his streak of consecutive starts is over.  Last week his 297 straight starts (321, if playoffs are included) ended because of his sprained shoulder.  Once again he will miss this weekend’s game and it seems as though this may be his final year in the NFL.

Another QB is also having a “Blue Christmas”.  Aaron Rogers is sitting out today’s game due to injury.  Like Favre, his streak as a starter is over.  He had started every game since taking over from Favre early in 2008.

Peyton Manning finds himself under pressure to keep the Colts’ playoff hopes alive.  If the Colts lose to the Jaguars, Jacksonville will clinch the AFC South.  The Colts would be at 7-7 and have to hope other teams lose in order to have any shot at the playoffs.  Peyton’s uncharacteristic streak of interceptions seems to have ended last week against the Titans. Will he be able to maintain that momentum and carry the Colts to the playoffs?

In this last weekend before Christmas, these quarterbacks find themselves in a season of transition.  As the playoffs approach, will they overcome their challenges and be able to deliver a great gift to their teams?  Stay tuned…the drama has just begun!

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