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The 2023 NFL (and XFL and USFL) Thread

Yeah, I saw Mahomes spiking his helmet. 😏

Your team and mine (Browns) are in tight contention for an AFC wild card spot. The Bills are in a six-way tie at 7-6, and we’re ahead but only by one game. With four weeks left to play, a lot can still happen.
Both teams have tough challengers in the final 4 weeks. As for the Browns’ division, Bengals have turned a corner, Ravens look really good… but the Steelers are spiraling downward…

Bills seem to be too far behind the Dolphins to win their division, but you never know…
 
Good lord, that was an ugly game between the Chargers and the Raiders last night. I mean, yes, it was Thursday Night Football, which often hosts ugly games. And yes, both teams going in were 5-8. But sheesh!

Watching the Raiders (who last week lost a similarly horrible game by the majestic score of 3-0) run up the score on the Chargers was like pulling the wings off flies. Al Michaels even invoked the idea of the high school Mercy Rule (stopping the game because it’s such an embarrassment). I never even heard of the Chargers’ backup quarterback, some guy named Stick. But it was hardly all his fault, as the Chargers offense kept losing the ball on their own end of the field. The Raiders could hardly be blamed for taking advantage of that. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.

The final score was 63-21 and it wasn’t even that close. LA didn’t start scoring until late into the game.

The over/under at the start of the game was a reasonable but ultimately laughable 36.5.

Reminds me of that post-game press conference where someone asked the coach what he thought of his offense’s execution, and he said, “I’m in favor of it.”

But don’t be surprised if this coach gets fired between games. That was just awful.
 
A couple of interesting stories out of the NFL lately (that don't have to do with Errant Rodgers and his delusional babbling about Jimmy Kimmel)...

Driving around today I heard a couple of sports talk hosts discussing the press conference where Bill Belichick and the Patriots parted ways. The hosts were understandably amused that the presser (at least according to them) consisted of ten minutes of mumbled statements, followed by no questions.

But the most amusing part was when one of them asked the other what's next for Belichick. The co-host replied (presumably seriously) that Bill would probably sit behind a desk on CBS and do a pre-game or half-time show. I had to laugh. Could you imagine Bill Belichick as a commenter on TV? The man is the Clarence Thomas of the NFL. He doesn't talk. 😆

The other story has to do with this weekend's Bills-Steelers game, which because of expected weather may be moved to Cleveland Browns Stadium. SI claims the rumor is false, but it's plausible. As Buffalo residents know all too well, the lake effect weather off Lake Erie can be brutal.
 
A couple of interesting stories out of the NFL lately (that don't have to do with Errant Rodgers and his delusional babbling about Jimmy Kimmel)...

Driving around today I heard a couple of sports talk hosts discussing the press conference where Bill Belichick and the Patriots parted ways. The hosts were understandably amused that the presser (at least according to them) consisted of ten minutes of mumbled statements, followed by no questions.

But the most amusing part was when one of them asked the other what's next for Belichick. The co-host replied (presumably seriously) that Bill would probably sit behind a desk on CBS and do a pre-game or half-time show. I had to laugh. Could you imagine Bill Belichick as a commenter on TV? The man is the Clarence Thomas of the NFL. He doesn't talk. 😆

The other story has to do with this weekend's Bills-Steelers game, which because of expected weather may be moved to Cleveland Browns Stadium. SI claims the rumor is false, but it's plausible. As Buffalo residents know all too well, the lake effect weather off Lake Erie can be brutal.
Oh no, it might snow in Buffalo! Growing up there, I know they have plans in place. People volunteer to come early to the stadium to clear snow if it’s been a particularly heavy snowfall.
 
The other story has to do with this weekend's Bills-Steelers game, which because of expected weather may be moved to Cleveland Browns Stadium. SI claims the rumor is false, but it's plausible. As Buffalo residents know all too well, the lake effect weather off Lake Erie can be brutal.
Finally met one of my husband's academic friends during a conference in Philly. He teaches at Buffalo and said he would volunteer himself if necessary to see the Bills in the playoffs. I can imagine the howling if the game were shifted to Cleveland.
 
Finally met one of my husband's academic friends during a conference in Philly. He teaches at Buffalo and said he would volunteer himself if necessary to see the Bills in the playoffs. I can imagine the howling if the game were shifted to Cleveland.
The team is officially asking for help clearing the snow: $20 an hour, free food, shovel as much as you can:

 
Omigod. I can’t believe the Bills are gonna lose to the Chiefs on a missed field goal. ☹️
Another year, another sad ending for the Bills. FG wouldn’t have changed anything. Mahomes with 2 minutes left and a tied game? Would have gotten their own FG to win. Bills played as well as they could, but too many injuries and they still haven’t solved their offensive coordinator issue. Running the ball every play worked for the first half, but they had no plan B for the 2nd half when KC put 9 defenders on the run and dared them to throw.

I think they overperformed this season, so getting back some defensive stars, and hopefully hiring a good pass receiver… and next year could be better.
 
So much for that idiotic conspiracy theory that says the Super Bowl contenders were fixed and pointed to the colors of the Super Bowl logo as “proof”.

72316766007-usatsi-19989930.jpg

Yeah, the Ravens didn’t quite make it, geniuses.

 
So much for that idiotic conspiracy theory that says the Super Bowl contenders were fixed and pointed to the colors of the Super Bowl logo as “proof”.

72316766007-usatsi-19989930.jpg

Yeah, the Ravens didn’t quite make it, geniuses.

The Ravens played better than every other team all season. Not sure why they melted down (at home) yesterday. Everybody talks about Mahomes but he only got 2 TDs and didn’t score at all in the 2nd half. Honestly the Bills were a much tougher test for KC, with a chance to win in the final 2 minutes. Baltimore never even seemed to be in the game, fumbling away the few chances they had.
 
Apparently the Super Bowl is jet fuel for right wing lunatics.

This is from Rolling Stone, but it appears to be behind a paywall, so here’s the Reader version in full.

Feet Washing, Taylor’s Beer, and Satanism: Right Wingers Spent The Super Bowl Complaining​

By Nikki McCann Ramirez
February 12, 2024
Right-wing commentators were grasping at straws for something to be mad about during Sunday night’s NFL championship
Plenty of American traditions surround Super Bowl Sunday: good food, overproduced commercials, the Puppy Bowl, and having octopi (and other animals) predict the game’s outcome are just a few. But in recent years one tradition has consistently threatened to ruin everyone’s fun, that being right-wingers spending more time fuming about their pet political and cultural grievances than actually enjoying the game.

Sunday night’s championship saw the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the San Francisco 49ers to defend their title and win their fourth franchise title in a first-half snoozer-turned-overtime-nail-biter that had fans on the edge of their seats until its final seconds. The game was already primed to be rage bait for conservative commentators, who had spent the run-up to the game griping about Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce’s relationship with Taylor Swift, while ginning up unhinged conspiracy theories about the deep state rigging the game.

And rage bait the broadcast was. Here’s a rundown of everything that irked conservatives Sunday night.

Like most people at the game, Taylor Swift seemed to be having a great time. At one point, the music star, fresh off a four-show stint in Japan, was shown on the jumbotron chugging a beer — a thing no one has ever done at a football game.

“Taylor Swift enjoying herself at the Super Bowl pounding beers with Satanists,” right-wing Rumble host Drew Hernandez wrote on X.

“Gross. We don’t need to be glorifying public intoxication,” pro-Trump activist Laura Loomer wrote on X. “Imagine being a parent and saying this woman is a role model for your daughter… Do people want their daughters to be drunks with high body counts? I prefer my icons to be like Donald Trump: SOBER.

If Taylor Swift downing her drink wasn’t enough to make you clutch your pearls, would you believe that rapper Ice Spice was secretly signaling her support for Satanism while she did it?

Right-wingers went into a frenzy when they realized the same clip of Swift showed Ice Spice making “devil horns” signs with her hands. A symbol so occult and sinister there’s even an emoji for it: 🤘

“Here’s something you don’t usually see at the Super Bowl: Demon summoning,” former Fox News producer Kyle Becker wrote on X.

Real America’s Voice host Ben Bergquam was similarly incensed. “God rebuke the evil and witchcraft of this generation,” he wrote on X. “Taylor Swift in all black chugging while her friend Ice Spice wearing an upside down cross signs to the devil. It’s all spiritual warfare. This generation needs Yahshua!”

He Gets Us, a conservative Christian advertising campaign ran multiple ads during Sunday’s broadcast. The initiative is heavily backed by the billionaire Green family, the owners of Hobby Lobby, who have poured millions of dollars into anti-abortion and anti-LGBTQ+ initiatives.

One ad used the biblical story of Jesus washing the feet of his followers as a template to present images of individuals representing opposing ideologies washing each other’s feet: a police officer washing the feet of a Black man, an anti-abortion protester washing the feet of a woman outside of a family planning clinic, a priest washing the feet of an LGBTQ+ man — ou get it. “Jesus washed the feet of friends and enemies. No ego or hate. He humbly loved his neighbors,” the group wrote on X (formerly Twitter) How can we do the same?”

The ad incensed conservative commentators, who accused the organization of promoting a “heretical” message of acceptance and countering Jesus never actually advocated for tolerance.

“This organization has millions of dollars to spend on Super Bowl ads pushing heretical bullshit to a mass audience,” The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh wrote.

Travis Kelce arrived at Las Vegas’ Allegiant Stadium wearing a sparkling black suit. Some on the right could not stand how bejeweled he was. “Straight men do not dress like this,” wrote Pizzagate conspiracy theorist Jack Posobiec.

“Hi. This is NOT a man. That’s all,” raged online edgelord Benny Johnson.

The Super Bowl has become as much about spectacle and performance as it has about football. During the pre-game show, Grammy award winner Andrea Day performed the hymn “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” a song often referred to as “The Black National Anthem.”

The national anthem itself was performed by country singer Reba McEntire, and rapper Post Malone delivered a rendition of “America the Beautiful,” but the inclusion of “Lift Every Voice and Sing” was a step too far for the right, which remains opposed to any public display that might reference the struggle of Black Americans.

“They’re desecrating America’s National Anthem by playing something called the ‘Black National Anthem,’” Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) wrote on X, adding that he’d informed his wife they wouldn’t be watching the game because of the performance.

Former Fox News host Megyn Kelly agreed, writing that “the so-called Black National Anthem does not belong at the Super Bowl. We already have a National Anthem and it includes EVERYONE.”

Travis Kelce has already been demonized by the right for his endorsement of the Covid-19 vaccine, and his advertising partnership with Pfizer, one of its major producers. The pharmaceutical giant took out an ad during the Super Bowl this year touting its efforts in the field of cancer research — and the conspiracy brains couldn’t handle it.

“Look at Pfizers Super Bowl Ad – targeting…..you guessed it – CANCER,” wrote the account Concerned Citizens, which boasts over 180,000 followers. “Did you know Pfizer ‘mRNA vaccines’ tested positive for SV40 which is a known Cancer Inhibitor? Cancers up EVERYWHERE post mRNA Roll out – create problem, offer solution. Make no mistake these people are pure evil.”

There is no evidence linking the Covid-19 vaccine to an increase in nationwide cancer diagnoses.

Kelce himself also took heat from conservative commentators over his vaccination status. After he aggressively complained to coach Reid on the sidelines about having to sit out a play, the fever swamps attempted to link his anger to vaccine-induced rage.

“Vaxxed out of his mind” Candace Owens, host at the Daily Wire, wrote.

That’s what happens “when you wash down your 7th Pfizer jab with Bud Light tr***y water,” wrote commentator Liz Wheeler.

Pro-Trump troll account Cattrud wrote that they “didn’t watch the Super Bowl,” but were “enjoying [Kelce’s] photo of booster roid-rage though and all the funny memes.”

In the lead-up to Super Bowl LVIII, long-standing conspiracy theories around the NFL’s “scriptwriting” for football seasons clashed with right-wing conspiracy theorists claiming Swift’s involvement with Kelce is part of a deep-state plot to gin up support for President Joe Biden in the 2024 election.

Even after some Republicans joined the likes of everyone sane and told their more extreme counterparts to tone down the crazy, they haven’t fully managed to stem the flow of nonsense.

“So… How long do we have before Taylor Swift starts trying to force Biden down our throats?” The Daily Wire wrote on X.

“As predicted, KC wins. And, in a dramatic overtime win, too. Stay tuned for more of the scripted Taylor $ Travis love story – paid for by big pharma. Predictable,” wrote failed GOP candidate Jack Lombardi II.

Hours before the game began, Donald Trump wrote on Truth Social that there was “no way” Swift would ever endorse Biden.

“I signed and was responsible for the Music Modernization Act for Taylor Swift and all other Musical Artists,” he wrote Sunday. “Joe Biden didn’t do anything for Taylor, and never will. There’s no way she could endorse Crooked Joe Biden, the worst and most corrupt President in the History of our Country, and be disloyal to the man who made her so much money.”

Biden’s X account poked fun at the conspiracy theories after the game on Sunday.

“Just like we drew it up,” the president captioned a photo of the “Dark Brandon” meme.

That is some crazy stuff. I especially like the part where they try to convince people that Jesus’ true message was hate and intolerance. 😵‍💫
 
Couple random super bowl items:

Security FAIL

And the memes, of course there are memes:

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I made a lovely mashup:

1707772667178.jpeg
And some of the halftime show was on roller skates, probably the only good thing about the halftime show.
 
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