Thursday, September 15, 2011

I think this hyperbole is as hyperbolic as anything else you're going to see out there today, Jim

I missed the NFL's opening weekend out running and hiking, respectively, but thanks to the NFL's Gamepass service, which makes watching games possible online if you're not in America, I'm catching up to the only game that seemed to be a close match-up between two good teams. Thanks to having dinner in between, I can't remember who won this game even though I read the boxscore, so it's as good as new.

Not as good as new is the tendency of reporters and commentators to forget that there have been games and players before the current one, and that there will be ones after the one in front of us. That's how we get the sort of nonsense I picked up in the span of a minute during the Jets-Cowboys game.

First, the sideline reporter (I missed her name) reported on the Cowboys' offensive line, which is made up of young, inexperienced players. She quoted a coach (excuse me, I was doing the dishes so I don't remember the exact wording) who said something to the effect of doubting whether the linemen were ready for the big moment, but that he was being proven wrong. Yes, this is a primetime game in New York, but these players are also not fresh out of high school and this is actually the first game of the season, not the last.

Second, more baffling, was Cris Collinsworth's claim that Bart Scott, once he makes a decision, reacts faster than any other linebacker that he has seen on film. Bart Scott is a great player, to be sure, but Collinsworth, at the age of 52, has been around professional football for three decades. Unless he just started watching film this past week, surely he has seen a linebacker that is better?

Now, it might be pedantic to tear apart every single word that comes out of someone's mouth, but it can be astonishingly painful to watch a football game if you actually pay attention to what the broadcasters might be saying. For people who are highly paid to talk about something to make sense while doing is not too much to ask.

All that aside, this does look to be a good game through the first half, even if the Jets are done by ten points. Even so, both teams are showing why they're trendy Super Bowl picks every preseason. Of course, as I wrote that, the Jets got a nice catch and run by LaDainian Tomlinson to set up a touchdown. Like Tomlinson and his former Chargers, the Cowboys and Jets both have Super Bowl windows that might not be as lengthy as they might seem.

One side (immense?) benefit of watching games via Gamepass: I'm paying to avoid commercials and if watching on a 9" monitor means avoiding the same 4 commercials (Budweiser, pick-up truck, midsize sedan, American TV show that is simulcasted) that Global shows in Canada, I'm all for it.

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