NFL Snark Rankings: Week 16
With all the holiday madness and last-minute shopping and wrapping to do, it'd be easy to overlook some games of the second-to-last week of the 2013 NFL season.
What is not easy to overlook is the continued dreadful team that is the Houston Texans.
Not only did Peyton Manning set the single-season passing TD record in their home stadium, his Under Armour t-shirt wasn’t even damp with sweat in the locker room after the game. There was one casualty. Unfortunately for the Denver Broncos, LB Von Miller tore his ACL and is out for the remainder of the season, including playoffs.
So there you go, Texans fans, you can hang your hat on the fact you may have derailed the Broncos post-season dreams, not to mention your own. Any updates on who you’re taking with the No 1 pick in the draft? Because Todd McShay of ESPN is on Mock Draft 7.0, and it’s not even Christmas yet.
Week 16 did produce some upsets, most notably the Bills shutting out the Dolphins, 19-0 at home, and the Cardinals beating the Seahawks at Century Link Field, which is almost as impenetrable as Fort Knox. The Dolphins' issues were on the offensive line; gee, wonder why? The Seahawks suffered a multitude of miscues, miscalls, and a missed field goal. That’s right, a missed field goal is big news in Seattle because K Steven Hauschka hadn’t misfired all year.
Wait! Why are we talking about good teams? These aren’t Power Rankings!
- Houston Texans – 'Way to throw out the junior varsity against one of the best teams in all of football, dudes. You lost, 37-13, at home to the Broncos, and it wasn’t really that close. Not only did Peyton Manning break Tom Brady’s single-season TD passing record, but he threw for 400 yards as if this was a bunch of middle-aged men getting together to play flag football on Thanksgiving. Once gain, K Randy Bullock was Houston's main offensive weapon. I realize RB Arian Foster is out for the season, but doesn’t WR Andre Johnson and TE Owen Daniel still play for the Texans? Houston travels to Tennessee next week to close out just a dreadful, complete turd of a season. Is Julie Roberts singing the National Anthem again?
- Washington Redskins – It doesn’t matter that you only lost by one point and knocked Tony Romo out for the season, but you're taking a page out of the Texans playbook? Kinda like, "Hey guys, we suck big Rocky Mountain Oysters, but let’s seriously maim a star player from the other team and ruin their season, too. That’ll be so much fun!" There are probably some sick and twisted Cowboys fans who are actually happy to see Tony Romo out for the remainder of the season, as Kyle Orton is one of the best backup QB’s in the league. However, I’m sure Jerry Jones and the ‘Boys would like to take their chances with Romo in Sunday night’s winner-take-all showdown with the Eagles. All you can do in Week 17, Redskins, is solidify the St Louis Rams draft position at No 2 overall, since they travel to Seattle. Well, that and start the interview process for a new head coach. Rumor has it, Baylor head coach Art Briles is interested in working with Robert Griffin III again. It’s like throwing spaghetti at a wall.
- Minnesota Vikings – Several years ago, losing to the Cincinnati Bengals, 42-13, would’ve gotten you tarred and feathered and returned to the town square. This year's version of the Bungals is slightly less humiliating than past versions, so we’re going to let this slide temporarily. After all, the Bengals are the de facto 2013 AFC North division champion. Still, the Vikings' secondary made Andy Dalton look like the second coming of 1991 Warren Moon. I don’t know what to say to Vikings fans other than, dudes, you'll get a healthy AP back next year and likely have a high draft pick to get excited about come April. What, a new head coach doesn’t get the juices flowing?
- Oakland Raiders – Unfortunately, we could only include two of the six 4-11 teams in this week’s Snark Rankings. Two, you say? Well, the Vikings are 4-10-1 which is just an iota above 4-11. It’s difficult to discern their level of ineptitude, but you wouldn’t be reading this article if you weren’t the slightest bit intrigued. Rumor has it the Silver & Black are interested in bringing John Gruden back as head coach, even with his lucrative ESPN contract for the Monday Night Football gig. See above. It’s like throwing spaghetti at the wall.
- Jacksonville Jaguars – No Snark Rankings would be complete without the spray-painted helmets of northern Florida. You dang near beat the Titans for the second time this season, and had I started Maurice Jones-Drew instead of Mike Wallace, you’d all be speaking with a 2013 Fantasy Football champion. Instead, you get a middle-aged white guy on the verge of filing for bankruptcy and divorce. Preferrably all at once. The Jags should have hope going into next season, as they play in one of the weakest divisions in the league, and the current state of the sixth playoff team in the AFC is more convoluted than Russian Winter Olympics policies. A sub-.500 team could make it. Remember the 2010 Seahawks and Beastquake?
There you have it, folks. Only one week to go, and it feels like there are still so many unsettled disputes to resolve. What’s really scary is three out of the five teams on this list were in the playoffs a year ago. Oakland and Jacksonville haven’t been playoff teams since before I was a father and are in no danger of changing that status next year.
What I’m most looking forward to is settling the NFC playoff picture once and for all …