As you probably did not notice, my site has been down since Monday. I would like to claim some measure of intelligence for fixing the site on my own (i.e. no help from the people at blogger, despite my constant asking), but truth be told I am probably to blame for crashing it in the first place. Either way, you were spared three days of my bitching about how bad this team is and how much Griese means to the team.
As bad as Simms played yesterday, I still blame the loss against the 49ers on Gruden. The 49ers are so atrocious that the Bucs sans Griese should have been able to beat a San Fran team that looks more comfortable in Division 1-AA. To steal a line from Buc Stats, the 49ers put in their waterboy at the end of the game and still beat the Bucs.
Exhibit A, Joe Gibbs and the Redskins treated this 49ers team like they were the '72 Dolphins to the point that he was mocked by Tony Kornheiser. What Gibbs (a coach who doesn't lose to bad teams) did was convince his players that the 49ers were better than everyone thought they were. And his 'Skins went out and played hard en route to scoring 500 points on the 49ers.
This trick will lose its potency after a few seasons as players grow tired of hearing a coach who sounds like a used car salesman, but it works really well when you are dealing with young players. And last time I checked there where a good deal of young guys on the Bucs offense.
Anyway, I'm heading back to the bay area this weekend to catch my first Bucs game of the season. Three weeks ago I was looking forward to this game with baited (sp?) breath. The Panthers were my pick (as well as half of America's pick) to make it to the Super Bowl out of the NFC. (Just for the record, the Panthers and the Colts were my Super Bowl picks, and I'm staying on both of those bandwagons. As much as the media folks and Archie would love it I just don't see a Manning vs Manning Super Bowl. I would hope that if the Giants made it to the NFC Championship and the Colts to the AFC Championship, Archie would pull a Richard Williams and have My OtherBrother Eli deactivate himself because of a pulled vagina.)
Now, this looks like an easy win for a resurgent Panthers team looking to make a statement. Assuming the Bucs defense plays the Panthers tough (which they will at Ray Jay), the Bucs offense will be unable to move the ball against the Carolina defense. Carolina is just too good against for the run for the Bucs to get their ground game established. This means I may have to face the prospect of watching Simms pass the ball thirty plus times. Good times.
On a final note, who else is glad to see the NBA? If the NFL is alpha male big brother of professional sports then the NBA is the younger sibling, crying for attention by starting bar fights and shacking up with its cousin. Where else can you hear Steve Kerr talking about "girth"?