NFL Snark Rankings: Week 5
We're deep enough into the NFL season now to pinpoint the contenders, pretenders, and teams that make the Snark Rankings.
Even though two teams from last week's list -- the Dolphins and Raiders -- had a bye, there was still plenty of wealth to spread around. Unfortunately, this week proved yet again that a professional athlete with nothing but time on his hands is a bad combination.
The Snarksters got off to a raucous start on Thursday night with the utter destruction rained down upon the Vikings at the hands of the Packers. We got a clear picture of what Ragnarök might look like.
We then headed to northern Florida, where we’ve spent a majority of time and energy analyzing what's often mistaken for a professional football team. Jacksonville is the place where coaches go to set their careers back a decade. What are the free agents thinking?
1. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5) – It was remarkable that they only lost 17-9 to the Steelers, even if it was a home game. Should the NFL include a column in their standings for moral victories? Because this is about as close as the Jags might get all season. This score should bring down their average points allowed per game from 41. Jax gets to go to Nashville next week and then hosts the Browns and Dolphins. So if there was ever time to pull out a gutsy victory, the month of October is it. The schedule gets brutal after that. They can’t even get jokes right.
2. Oakland Raiders (0-4) – They didn’t lose this week, and that’s about the nicest thing I can say. The biggest news the Raiders will make is when they hire their new coach, if anybody wants that job. How far they've fallen, with no end in sight. With high unemployment in America, some over-qualified candidate should emerge. Good luck with the Chargers next week.
3. New York Jets (1-4) – What a complete disaster of a game against San Diego! Congrats to the Jets on becoming the first team to get shut out this season. QB Geno Smith regressed even further, which I didn’t think was possible, not that backup Michael Vick fared much better. Geno finished with a QB Rating of 7.6, and Vick posted a 49.7. Both QBs averaged under three yards per passing completion. Where's Mark Sanchez when you need him? The Jets don't have a winnable game until they play the Vikings in Week 14, and that’s being generous. What do you think the line will be when they host Denver next week?
4. Tennessee Tuxedos (1-4) – That's right. Ask yourself, are they playing like Titans? Rhetorical question. This crew is more of an enigma than the Riddler after blowing a 28-10 halftime lead to the Browns. QB Jake Locker actually looked like he could be a legit NFL chucker, then he hurts his hand and they revert to Charlie Whitehurst for the second week in a row. If they blow a lead like that to the Jaguars, the Tuxes might shoot up the rankings, although I have a feeling the Jets are going to be strong contenders for the top spot next week. A matchup of two Snark teams always brings intrigue and drama, at least for this writer who actually has to pay attention to these games. A tie would be fitting. So would a booze allowance as a business write-off.
Or simply go to LP Field for your mix of mystery, suspense, and stuff blowing up when you least expect it.
5. Minnesota Vikings (2-3) – Thursday night games have become the butt of many jokes on the talk show circuit, as there's yet to be a competitive game. Let’s hope the Colts-Texans clash reverses this disturbing trend. The Vikings were forced to start third-string, red-headed stepchild Christian Ponder, who put up a rushing TD in garbage time in the fourth quarter. Other than that, it was completely ugly. Ponder’s QB Rating of 45.8 has to be one of the worst in the modern era. Can somebody from Elias Sports Bureau look that up, please? One suggestion for the Purple People Eaters moving forward: try to get the ball to Cordarrelle Patterson. He’s one of the best players in the game and gets two catches for eight yards? How’s Teddy Bridgewater’s ankle look? Because I’m pretty sure he could’ve posted better numbers than Ponder if he was out there on crutches. Hosting the Lions in Week 6 isn’t going to get any easier. They're going to be fired up after losing to the Bills at home. How in the world has that team won two games?
It must be difficult for fans of these incompetents to expect much the rest of the season. Jags and Raiders fans must be paying more attention to college football and what players might be joining them next year as top draft picks. If Buffalo makes the playoffs, that'll leave the Raiders as the team with the longest playoff drought since they went to the Super Bowl in 2002. That’s a streak that might get extended for quite some time.