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Boston Blood Sox

Boston sports blog featuring Patriots propaganda, and opinions on the Red Sox, Bruins, and Celtics. Hot takes served daily.

Updated: 2017-08-21T08:33:43.824-04:00


Patriots vs Steelers Drinking Game: AFC Championship Edition


Patriots vs. Steelers. Tom Brady vs. Big Ben. Bill Belichick vs. Mike Tomlin. SpyGate and DeflateGate vs. a coach trying to block a kick returner on the field. Two teams, lots of recent success, lots of rivalry, lots of respect, and lots of shared hatred for Roger Goodell.Get ready to share your drunken thoughts on SpapFace and InstaChat, because it's the motherfucking AFC Championship.Belichick says that players play, and coaches coach. And we say that drinkers drink. So here's a drinking game to play during the AFC Championship:Anytime a Commentator Says..."AFC" = 1 drink from a beer"Conference" = 1 drink"Championship" = 1 drink"Game" = 1 drink"Super Bowl" = 1 drink"51" = 1 drink"Houston" = 1 drink"Playoffs" = 1 drink"Home field" = 1 drink"Rivalry" = 1 drink"Record" = 1 drink"History" = 1 drink"In a row" = 1 drink"Tom" = 1 drink"Ben" = 1 drink"Brown" = 1 drink"Bell" = 1 drink"Killer bee" = 1 drink (bonus points if you're buzzed by the time you drink it)"Malcolm" = 1 drink"Jones" = 1 drink"Bill/Will/Williams" = 1 drinkAnything about Tom Brady's or James Harrison's age = drink 39 seconds for Brady, 38 seconds for HarrisonAnything about Brady's or Harrison's workout routines = 1 drink (bonus points for light beer), 5 push-ups, 10 crunches, 1 shot of liquor"Roger Goodell" = 1 drink with your middle finger in the air (something both Pats and Steelers fans can agree on)Anytime this is on screen...A trophy = 1 drink per trophyThe AFC logo = 1 drinkA Super Bowl ring = 1 drink per ringThe Super Bowl logo = 1 drinkA Terrible Towel = 1 drink per towelA tri-cornered hat = 3 drinks per hat (1 per corner, bonus points if drinking Sam Adams)Highlights of Patriots beating the Steelers = drink for the duration of the highlight (bonus points/bonus drinking below)-Clip of Bledsoe throwing a TD = drink for 11 seconds-Troy Brown punt return TD = drink for 80 seconds-Rodney Harrison INT return TD = drink for 37 seconds-If you're the first to spot Corey Dillon, Deion Branch, Ted Johnson, or David Givens, you can distribute drinks to everyone else until the end of the quarterRob Gronkowski = finish your beer, spike it (bonus points for spiking glass containers)Josh McDaniels = 1 drinkDante Scarnecchia = 1 shot of ginErnie Adams = 1 slug of moonshineBob Kraft = 1 drinkKraft talking to someone = drink entire time he's talkingMike Tomlin = 1 drink, then block someone from walking to the fridgeThe number 7 or 12 (in the score, the clock, on a uniform, in the stands) = 1 drinkRoger Goodell at Gillette Stadium = finish a keg of beer because it won't happenAnytime this happens...Tom Brady points out the 'Mike' = 1 drink (bonus points for girls if drinking a Mike's Hard product, negative points for guys drinking Mike's Hard products)Brady says "Alpha milk" = 1 drink (bonus points for White Russian drinking)Brady throws to a non-WR = 1 drinkBrady gets pissed at himself or others = 1 drinkBrady throws deep incomplete = 1 drinkBrady throws deep complete = 1 shotBrady throws to Julian Edelman = 1 drinkEdelman gets the ball in a non-receiving way (punt return, run, throw, etc.) = 1 drinkDion Lewis gets the ball in a non-running way (catch, return, etc.) = 1 drinkLeGarette Blount runs someone over = 1 drinkPatriots RB runs for 10+ yards = 1 drinkPatriots RB runs for 20+ yards = 1 shotMatthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkPatriots try a trick play = finish your beerPatriots successful (at least 20+ yards) with trick play = finish your beer + 1 shotYou think Ben Roethlisberger is sacked, but he escapes = 1 shotAntonio Brown touches the ball = drink until he's tackledBrown is just too fast to be covered/tackled = 1 drinkLe'Veon Bell hesitates = pause, then drink, but the last one to drink after pausing has to finish their beerA kicker misses a kick = 1 drink for PATs, 3 for FGsA team goes no huddle = 1 drink per snapKickoff or punt return = drink during entire returnTouchback = 1 drinkSo enjoy the game. Get lubed up. Don't drink and drive. In fact, don't play this game at all because it will kill you.Boston Blood Sox[...]

Ray Lewis calls out Tom Brady's toughness, even though Brady played with no fear against murderer Ray Lewis


In Saturday night's Patriots-Texans game, Jadeveon Clowney was not penalized for what seemed to be a late hit on Pats' QB Tom Brady. Clowney began the tackle shortly after Brady released the football, but probably should have been called for roughing the passer as the tackle extended long after the ball was out, with Clowney eventually dragging Brady to the ground.

Brady made little effort to hide his feelings, yelling at the refs with such anger that he fell to the ground again.

And maybe the forceful lobbying worked, as later a roughing call was finally called on Clowney. Be that as it may, Brady has a well-deserved reputation as someone who gets angry about calls and non-calls failing to go his way. He's seen as a complainer, because that's what he does to refs on the field.

And so what? Seriously, how is this a criticism? The NFL has bad, inconsistent officiating. Tom Brady gets angry at bad officiating. Fans at home who yell at their TV about bad officiating, complain about Tom Brady yelling at the ref about bad officiating.

It doesn't make sense.

What baffles me most of all is that by yelling and complaining, it somehow makes him less tough. He's seen as a whiner and a baby. Ray Lewis, for example, Tweeted this last night.

As if Brady doesn't know what football is, what the game entails, and that hard contact is part of the game.

It's funny for Ray Lewis to call out a player for lack of toughness, when on the football field Brady has been fearless, even when facing people who have participated in murder. Such as Ray Lewis.

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If you don't like the complaining to refs, fine. That's kind of silly because NFL officiating is horribly inconsistent and overly obsessed with defining things that can't be defined while simultaneously ignoring the spirit and intention of the rules.

But Brady's complaining has nothing to do with toughness or lack thereof.

Photo Credit: USATSI

Patriots didn't play crappy game against Texans, but need to improve to beat Steelers or Chiefs


You can't turn the ball over 3 times in a playoff game and expect to win. Unless you're the Patriots and you win by 18, putting up 34 points on the #1 defense in the NFL. Tom Brady, by the way, is now 4-1 in playoff games against #1 NFL defenses. It's amazing how unamazed I am by that tidbit.The amazing has become the typical for Brady, Belichick, and the Pats."Amazing" is not how I would describe the Patriots' performance last night. Brady was off for most of the game (18 for 38, 2 picks). There were times when the O-line couldn't stop the pass rush up the middle. The Pats failed to punch it in from 1st and goal on the 3. And as great as Dion Lewis looked for most of the game, you simply CANNOT fumble a kickoff return. Who does he think he is? Cyrus Jones?The Patriots can't play 60 minutes like that and expect to beat the Chiefs or Steelers. Those teams probably won't give the ball back 3 times. And those teams will score TDs off turnovers, not field goals.The Chiefs had the top takeaway/giveaway differential in the NFL at +16. Compare that to the Texans at 26th and a -7 differential. KC only lost the ball 17 times (8th best in NFL). They won't give you the ball back the way Osweiler did last night.Then there's Pittsburgh, who have a much more dangerous offense than Houston's. Compare Le'Veon Bell to Lamar Miller. Antonio Brown is one of the few WRs out there better than DeAndre Hopkins. And Ben Roethlisberger is just on a different planet compared to Brock Osweiler. Comparing Big Ben to Osweiler is like comparing how great Shaq the basketball player was with how awful Shaq the actor was. And like Osweiler, Shaq the actor was paid a ridiculous amount of money considering the crappy results.There's room for improvement, but the Pats didn't play a crappy game. The kickoff return TD was the result of excellent blocking and Lewis' agility and outright speed. Edelman seemed to disappear for stretches but finished with 8 catches and 137 yards. Most of the night the O-line protected Brady and gave him plenty of time. Defensively, the Pats forced 3 turnovers, limited Hopkins to 6 catches and 65 yards, gave up fewer than 300 yards (285), held the Texans on 13 of 16 3rd downs (81.3%), sacked Osweiler 3 times, hit him a few more, and held on 2 of 3 Texans trips into the Red Zone.I'm optimistic the Pats' offense will perform better. They have no choice. Turn the ball over like that again and the Chiefs or Steelers will make you pay. I also have concerns that some key players like Brady, Blount, Bennett, and Amendola are banged up and it's affecting their usage and/or performance. At least the Pats get an extra day to recover.And ultimately what matters is that for the 11th time in the Brady/Belichick era and for the 6th year in a row, we're on to the AFC Championship game.Photo credit: Elise Amendola/AP PhotoBoston Blood Sox[...]

Patriots-Texans Drinking Game: Playoff Edition


Saturday night the Patriots host the Texans in t he AFC Divisional round. The annual tradition of Patriots football extending into mid-January continues. Hopefully the Pats aren't too overly confident in this game, but you can go ahead and get as overly confucked up as you want. And the best way to do so is to play this Patriots drinking game:

Everytime a commentator says...
"Divisional" = take 1 drink of beer
"Round" = 1 drink
"Playoffs" = 1 drink
"AFC" = 1 drink
"Home field" = 1 drink
"Seed" = 1 drink
"Gillette" = 1 drink
"Tom" = 1 drink
"Brady" = 1 drink
"Brock" = 1 drink
"DeAndre" = 1 drink
"Vince" = 1 drink
"Malcolm" = 1 drink
"Jones" = 1 drink
"Bill/Will/William(s)" = 1 drink
"Jim" = 1 drink
"Phil" = 1 drink
"CBS" = 1 drink
"Cold" = 1 drink
"Super Bowl" = 1 drink

Anytime this is on screen...
Highlights of the Patriots beating the Texans = drink during the entire clip
Highlights of Tom Brady in the playoffs = drink for entire clip
Super Bowl highlights = drink during entire clip
JJ Watt = finish your beer, do 10 pushups, then post on social media about working out
Rob Gronkowski = finish your beer and Gronk spike it, bonus points if spiking a glass container
Jacoby Brissett = drink for 7 seconds
Josh McDaniels = 1 drink
Dante Scarnecchia = finish your beer
Ernie Adams = finish your beer, 1 shot of liquor
Bob Kraft = 1 drink
Kraft talking to someone = drink entire time he's talking
Vince Wilfork in a Patriots uniform = 1 drink, eat 1 slice of pizza
Wilfork on the sideline = 1 drink, 1 shot, eat 1 turkey leg
A star (including in logos, but not on helmets) = 1 drink per star

Anytime this happens...
Brady points out the "mike" = 1 drink, bonus points if drinking a Mike's Hard product (girls only), negative points for guys drinking Mike's
Brady says "Alpha milk" = 1 drink, bonus points if drinking a White Russian
Brady throws to a non-receiver = 1 drink
Brady looks pissed = 1 drink
Julian Edelman thrown to = 1 drink
Edelman makes someone miss = 1 drink
Martellus Bennett runs someone over = 1 drink
LeGarette Blount runs someone over = 1 drink
Blount runs for 10+ yards = 1 shot
Blount runs for 20+ yards = finish your beer
Matthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drink
Stephen Gostkowski misses a FG or PAT = 1 drink, 1 shot
Brock Osweiler makes a great throw = 1 drink
Osweiler makes a terrible throw = 1 drink
DeAndre Hopkins thrown to = 1 drink
Hopkins catches pass = drink for 5 seconds
Hopkins catches a pass for 25+ yards = finish your beer
Hopkins makes an insane catch = whole beer
A team goes no huddle = 1 drink per snap
Kickoff return = drink during entire return
Touchback = 1 drink

So enjoy the game. Get lubed up responsibly. Appoint designated drivers. Be prepared to dial 9-1-1 at any time. And hopefully the Pats will be moving on to KC or Pittsburgh while you're moving on to a stomach pump and liver surgery.

Patriots' Path to the Super Bowl


The Patriots secured the top seed in the AFC playoffs Sunday, ensuring that the road to the Super Bowl goes through New England. But what kind of obstacles will the Patriots face on that road? Who will stand in their path and what kind of challenge will they pose?Just a sidenote about this year's NFL playoffs... between the Pats, Steelers, Chiefs, Raiders, and Dolphins, you've got tons of great AFC/AFL/NFL history. These teams combine for 16 total Super Bowl wins, or 2/3 of the 24 Super Bowls won by AFC teams. The Steelers, Patriots, Dolphins, and Raiders have won more AFC Championship games (25) than all other teams combined. Think about all the great players, coaches, and teams: the Steel Curtain, the perfect 1972 season, the Black Hole, the loudest stadium, Brady, Bradshaw, Stram, Madden, Marino.Plus there's the Texans.Here is a list of what the Patriots will face in each round:DIVISIONAL ROUND OPPONENTS: Oakland, Houston, or MiamiThe Patriots cannot face the #2 seeded Chiefs or #3 seeded Steelers in the Divisional Round, which is good news because these are the two teams I'd least prefer the Patriots to play. If the Raiders still had a healthy Derek Carr I'd include them in that group. But they don't.So let's start with the Carr-less Raiders. They had a great offense with Carr. They still have plenty of talent on that side of the ball, but in a playoff game against Belichick and the rested Patriots, it's hard to imagine the Raiders posing much of a threat. You never know, though. Over-confidence can be a killer. And if the Raiders make it to the Divisional Round, that means they figured out a way to win, and did so on the road. Albeit against a soft Houston team. But momentum, confidence, and a backup QB with little game film of to study... you just never know.You would hope the Pats would take the game 100% seriously and do their job.If it's Patriots vs. Raiders in the Divisional Round, how many times will the phrase "Tuck Rule" be uttered before and during the game? Over/under on that would be 1,000,000.5.I don't know which team I'd prefer the Patriots to play: Houston or Oakland. There's a strong chance it will be one of these two as I think the Steelers will easily handle the Dolphins. So do you want the team with an injured QB, or the team with the mediocre QB?The 9-7 Texans were 4-6 outside of their crappy division. One of those losses was a 27-0 blowout at Gillette Stadium against Jacoby Brissett.Houston averages under 200 yards in the air per game. For every position they're strong at, there are others that they are terribly weak at, quarterback being the most obvious.The last (and only) time the Texans beat the Patriots was in January 2010. That was the game Wes Welker got hurt in before the playoffs started. The Patriots are 7-1 against Houston all-time, and are in the midst of a 5-game win streak against them.You can't not be happy if the Pats play the Texans.If Miami beats the Steelers, then the Patriots play the Dolphins no matter what happens in the 4 vs. 5 game. Miami can sometimes give the Pats trouble, but not so much at Gillette Stadium in the Brady Era. The last time the Dolphins won in Foxboro was in 2008, when Matt Cassel was the Pats' QB. Brady has beaten Miami 10-straight times at Gillette, and is 14-1 against them at home.But there's something unsettling about playing a team for the third time in a season. Those games can get weird. The Dolphins have seen (twice) how the Patriots can beat them. They can learn and possibly adapt. Third games can be unpredictable, which seems counter-intuitive considering there's already 120 minutes of football played between the two teams.Over-familiarity and maybe over-confidence can be a recipe for a disappointing loss. And after all, the Pats' win in Miami this past Sunday was a few turnovers away from being very, very interesting. One or two big plays can turn an easy game into a tough challenge.All 3 of the potential Divisional Round opponents are [...]

Patriots-Jets Drinking Game: Christmas Eve Edition


Ho Ho Ho!!! Merry Christmas!!! And what better way to celebrate the holidays than to imbibe some Christmas spirits while watching the Patriots (hopefully) ruin yet another Christmas for the Jets. By playing this game you will ensure that you will be given a massive hangover as a present from Old St. Nick, and perhaps some severe liver damage or a trip to the hospital for a stomach pump. Here's a drinking game to play while watching the Patriots steal Christmas from the Jets, Grinch style. And similar to the Grinch, if you play this game your liver will grow three sizes this day...Everytime a commentator says:"Happy" or "Merry" = take 1 drink from a beer"Holidays" or "Christmas" = 1 drink"Hanukkah" = take 8 drinks"Rivalry" = 1 drink"New" (as in New York and New England) = 1 drink"AFC East" = 1 drink"Holly" = 1 drink"Jolly" = 1 drink"Rain" = 1 drink"Snow" = 1 drink"Brandon" = 1 drink"Malcolm" = 1 drink"Marshall" = 1 drink"Jones" = 1 drink"Tis" = 1 drink"The season" = 1 drink"Season's greetings" = 1 drinkAnytime this is on screen:Video of the Jets losing = 1 drinkA Santa hat = 1 drinkSanta = 1 drink, 2 cookies, glass of milkSnow (fake or real) = 1 drinkChristmas tree = 1 drinkWreath = 1 drinkUgly Christmas sweater = 1 drinkA fireplace = 1 drink per logA player or coach's family = 1 drink per family memberChristmas lights = 1 drinkCandle = 1 drink per candle (lit candles only so watch those Menorahs)Reindeer = 1 drink per reindeerGrinch = 1 drinkDarelle Revis = 1 drink (bonus points if you're drinking an island/tropical drink)Bill Belichick = 1 drink and last person to say "Bah Humbug" has to finish their beerRob Gronkowski = finish your beer and spike the container (bonus points if it's glass)Robert Kraft = 1 drinkRobert Kraft talking to someone = drink the entire time he's talkingAnytime this happens:The Jets do something stupid = 1 drinkCyrus Jones does something stupid = 1 drinkCyrus Jones isn't on the field at a time he had been in the past = 1 shot of liquorCyrus Jones is actually on the field = entire beer + 2 shots of liquorTouchback = 1 drinkKickoff return = drink during entire returnMatthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkBrady throws to Edelman = 1 drinkGostkowski misses a kick = 1 shot of liquorA runningback catches a pass = 1 drinkLeGarrette Blount runs the ball = 1 drink + 1 hit from a bluntMalcolm Butler breaks up a pass = finish your beerDevin McCourty makes a big hit = finish your beerPatriots go no huddle = drink each snapTom Brady points out the "Mike" = 1 drink (bonus points for drinking Mike's Hard Lemonade but only if you're a girl, negative points for guys)Brady says "Alpha milk" = 1 drink (bonus points if you're drinking a White Russian)So get lubed up, enjoy the game, Merry Holidays to all and to all a good night!!!!!!Boston Blood Sox[...]

Patriots-Cardinals Drinking Game: Opening Sunday Night Edition


Football season is back! And so are the Patriots! Well, not all of the Patriots. No Rob Gronkowski or Tom Brady, because it was deemed more probable than not that Brady was more than likely probably generally aware that footballs were possibly potentially may have been deflated, even though they were the air pressure predicted by the Ideal Gas Law. And the NFL revealed absolutely no data from their air pressure monitoring during the 2015 season. Brady's suspension has little to do with air pressure and more to do with his unwillingness to yield to the pressure applied by the NFL and Roger Goodell. Anyway, DeflateGate is enough to drive a man to drink, so let's get to a more sobering thought: a drinking game for the season opener!

Here are the rules...

Anytime a commentator says:
"Suspension" = take 1 drink of beer
"Deflate" = 1 drink
"Injured" = 1 drink
"Out" = 1 drink
"4 weeks" = 1 drink
"Brady" = 1 drink
"Gronkowski" = 1 drink
"Week 1" = 1 drink
"Sunday" = 1 drink
"John" or "Johnson" = 1 drink
"Brown" = 1 drink
"Malcolm" = 1 drink
"Barkevious" = 1 drink and scream "MINGO!"
"Jimmy" = 1 drink
"Arizona" = 1 drink
"NFC West" = 1 drink
Anything about 'The Patriot Way' or 'Next Man Up' = finish your beer

Anytime this is on screen:
Bill Belichick = 1 drink
Bruce Arians = 1 drink
Barkevious Mingo = 1 drink and scream "MINGO!"
Bob Kraft = 1 drink
Bob Kraft talking to someone = drink the entire time he's talking
A picture or video of Tom Brady = drink for 12 seconds and raise a middle finger to Roger Goodell
A picture or video of Rob Gronkowski = 1 drink, and stretch your hamstrings
Highlights from Super Bowls played in Arizona = drink for the duration of the video
An injury report graphic = 1 drink per injured player

Anytime this happens:
DraftKings or FanDuel commercial = 1 drink (make sure you have enough beers)
Peyton Manning commercial = 1 drink
Cris Collinsworth annoys you = 1 shot of liquor
Al Michaels says something without explicitly saying it (typically about the spread) = 1 shot
Someone Gronk-spikes a football = finish your beer and spike it (bonus points for glass bottles)
Touchback = 1 drink
Kickoff or punt return = drink for the duration of the return
Julian Edelman catches a pass = 1 drink
You're worried Edelman is hurt = 1 shot
Martellus Bennett is tall = 1 drink
Matthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drink
LeGarrette Blount runs for a 1st down = 1 drink, 1 hit from a blunt
Jimmy Garoppolo says "Alpha Milk" = 1 drink
Chandler Jones makes a big play = 1 shot

So enjoy the game, get lubed up responsibly, this blog is not responsible for hospital bills incurred due to injuries and illnesses suffered as a result of playing this game.

Do not play this game.

I feel bad for Alex Rodriguez's legacy (not him, just his legacy)


Alex Rodriguez will be retiring at the end of the week. There will be no farewell tour with teams paying tribute to A-Rod with gifts like they did for Rivera, Jeter, and Ortiz. Red Sox fans at Fenway will be able to bid farewell to A-Rod one last time this week before his last game at Yankee Stadium on Friday. I wonder if they'll cheer or boo. Perhaps a mixture of both.I don't feel bad for Alex Rodriguez. He seems like a dick. And it's tough to pity someone who has made hundreds of millions of dollars playing baseball. However, I do feel bad for his legacy. It deserves better. If you separate the unlikable man from the achievements, you'll see that they deserve more praise and appreciation than they'll receive.Alex Rodriguez took PEDs throughout his career. Does that matter? Are we still pretending that it matters? Did it give him a competitive advantage, or just put him on the same level as everyone else? Compared to his HGH and steroid assisted peers, A-Rod hit hundreds more homeruns. Furthermore, he hit nearly 700 homers off pitchers who went to the same "pharmacy" as he did. It's not an advantage if just about everyone has it.And if you discredit A-Rod's stats because of PED usage, you have to do the same to others who have used. That includes David Ortiz, fellow Red Sox fans. So let's just move on from the PED issue.There were a few years when Alex Rodriguez was the best player in baseball, and it wasn't even close. He won 3 MVPs, and in 2007 he received 26 of 28 first-place votes. With the Rangers, he led the AL in homers 3 years in a row and won 2 Gold Gloves at short-stop. So he hit homeruns and was the best fielder at the toughest defensive position.But all people could talk about was his $252 million contract. His performance was unfairly juxtaposed against the expectations of what was then a ludicrous contract. So no matter how many homeruns he hit, all people saw was the price tag.Looking back, I can't believe how much resentment there was from fans and pundits directed toward A-Rod for being paid. Was he supposed to negotiate the contract down so he would get paid less? That would be like Emma Watson offering to sleep with me, and me responding "Nope, second base is as far as I'm willing to go. I don't want people to hate me."A-Rod also didn't get enough credit in the Great Short-Stop Arguments from 1997 to 2003, probably due to his playing in the AL West. If you don't remember or are too young, those were the days when fans in Boston, New York, and all over the country debated who was better: Jeter or Nomar. And as two large fanbases and an East coast oriented sports media compared the two, the best short-stop in baseball (A-Rod) was being largely ignored. Nobody in the East cared about what happened with the Mariners or Rangers. The 10pm airing of Baseball Tonight started at the same time as their games, and the morning sports page was published too early for full box scores. For a few years, A-Rod was a better short-stop and player than Jeter or Nomar. But the debate was still localized to the Northeast.You can make an argument that A-Rod is a better player than Jeter. Power is an important part of the game and Rodriguez's power numbers dwarf Jeter's. A-Rod has about 440 more homeruns than Jeter, and slugged .550 compared to Jeter's .440. A-Rod also has a slightly higher OBP (.380 vs. .377). Jeter stole only 29 more bases. A-Rod knocked in 773 more runs. So A-Rod got on base, he could run, he could field, he could hit, he could hit for power.Of course, Jeter was clutch and A-Rod was a bit of a choker. And maybe that makes up the difference between the power hitter and the non-power hitter. My point is that A-Rod is in many ways better than one of the most cherished players in the illustrious history of the New York Yankees, and people don't even realize it.And did you know A-Rod has 3,000 hits? I don't reme[...]

Patriots-Broncos Drinking Game: AFC Championship Edition


Patriots, Broncos. Manning, Brady. An AFC Championship and a trip to the Super Bowl on the line. What could be any better than that? I'll tell you what... Drinking so much alcohol you'll need to watch the 4th quarter in the Emergency Room. Here's a drinking game to play while the Patriots face the Broncos Sunday in the AFC Championship...Anytime a commentator says:"AFC" = 1 drink of beer"Championship" = 1 drink"Manning" = 1 drink"Brady" = 1 drink"Winner" = 1 drink"Seventeen(th)" = drink for 17 seconds"Meeting" = 1 drink"Playoffs" = 1 drink"History" = 1 drink"Legacy" = 1 drink"Super Bowl" = 1 drink"Fifty" = 1 drink"Mile high" = 1 drink, 1 hit from a jointAnything about the air being thin = hold your breath for 15 seconds, then drink for 5 secondsAnything about the weather being nice = 1 drink"Crowd noise" = 1 drink"Home field" = 1 drink"Injury" = 1 drink"Malcolm" = 1 drink"Jackson" = 1 drinkAnytime this is on screen...A Roman numeral = drink for as many seconds as the number (e.g. XVII=drink for 17 seconds)Highlights from previous Manning/Brady games = drink during entire highlightHighlights of Brady/Patriots struggling in Denver = drink during entire highlightThe number 18 (on the field or in a graphic) = 1 drinkA trophy = 1 drink per trophyManning face = 1 shot of liquor (and permission to vomit)A Manning besides Peyton = 1 drink per ManningA horse (real or cartoon) = 1 drinkA horseshoe (real or as part of a logo) = 1 drink per shoeA mountain = 1 drink pear peakJohn Elway = 1 drinkBrock Osweiler = 1 drinkWade Philips = 1 drinkMatt Patricia = 1 drinkErnie Adams = 1 glass of wineJosh McDaniels = 1 drinkA graphic about injuries = 1 drinkA coin toss (live or video) = 1 drinkBob Kraft = 1 drinkKraft talking to someone = drink the entire time he's talkingAnytime this happens...Someone says "Omaha" = 1 drinkBroncos fans say that stupid "incomplete" chant = 1 drinkBrady and/or Manning are compared to all-time greats = 1 drink for each player compared toJamie Collins makes a freakishly athletic play = 1 drinkMatthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkJulian Edelman breaks a tackle = 1 drinkRob Gronkowski destroys someone/something = 1 drinkYou're worried Edelman or Gronk is injured = half a beerGronk spikes something = finish your beer, spike empty can/bottle on ground (bonus points for glass bottles)Manning says the name of a city besides Omaha = 2 drinksManning says the name of a state/province = 5 drinksManning says the name of a country = finish your beerManning seems to adjust the play = 1 drinkCommentators praise Manning for a good play call = 1 drinkCommentators avoid criticizing Manning for a bad play call = 1 drinkBroncos run the ball = 1 drinkManning overthrows a receiver = 1 drinkManning underthrows a receiver = 1 drinkManning makes an accurate throw longer than 10 yards = half a beerManning fumbles or throws a pick = 1 shot of liquorCommentators criticize Manning for a mistake (unlikely) = 1 entire beer, 2 shots of liquorThe commentators mention HGH (this will not happen) = drink all alcohol in the building by the end of the game, which will be extra rough in an apartment building or a bar, so feel free to take performance enhancing substances to helpSo enjoy the game on the field between the Patriots and Broncos, as well as the game off the field between you and your liver. Make sure you have a path shoveled wide enough for the paramedics to carry you out on a stretcher.Boston Blood Sox[...]

Patriots-Giants drinking game: painful memories edition


One streak will end Sunday. Either the Patriots' 11-game winning streak, or Giants' 3-game winning streak against the Patriots. Throughout the week, few people seemed to actually talk about this game in 2015, instead focusing on games played 4 and 8 years ago, by almost completely different sets of players. For the Patriots, this is a tough road game against a good opponent. And they probably won't make nervous mistakes like so many Pats' opponents have this season. Then again, a 5-4 record in the NFL this year isn't very impressive. Being slightly above average in an incredibly below average league is like repeating the 4th grade and then getting a B-. Who cares?Speaking of who cares, who cares about my game analysis? Let's get to the drinking game!The rules...Anytime a commentator says:"Super Bowl" = 1 drink of beer"New York" = 1 drink"Manning" = 1 drink"Tom" = 1 drink"Brady" = 1 drink"Coughlin" = 1 drink"Malcolm" = 1 drink"Chandler" = 1 drink"Tyree" = 1 drink"Manningham" = 1 drink (plus the 1 drink for saying "Manning")"Streak" = 1 drink"Undefeated" = 1 drink"18 and 1" = drink beer for 18 seconds, then drink 1 shot of liquor"Pierre-Paul" = 1 drink"Fireworks" = 1 drinkAnytime this is happens:DraftKings or FanDuel commercial = 1 drink (not allowed to do so in New York)Odell Beckham Jr. catches something with both hands = 1 drinkDeflateGate is mentioned = 1 drinkShane Vereen catch or carry = 1 drinkBrandon Meriweather dirty play = 1 drinkTom Brady takes longer than 2 seconds to get rid of the ball = 1 drinkJulian Edelman seems to get concussed = 1 drinkRob Gronkowski breaks a tackle = 1 drinkGronk scores a touchdown = finish your beer, spike the can/bottle (bonus points for spiking glass)LeGarrette Blount breaks a 10+ yard run = 1 drinkJamie Collins does something freakishly athletic = 1 drinkChandler Jones records a sack = 1 drinkTouchback = 1 drinkKickoff or punt return = drink for the duration of the returnMatthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkAnytime this is on screen:Fall foliage = 1 drink, bonus points if it's pumpkin flavoredDraftKings logo = 1 drinkHighlights of a Super Bowl = drink for the duration of the highlight, then throw up if it was against the GiantsRoman numerals = 1 drink per set of numeralsHighlights of a Giants receiver making a ridiculous catch = drink entire beer, take a shot, snort a line of oxyClip of a former Patriots receiver named Wes dropping a catch = finish your beer, pop a Molly, and sign with the RamsBill Belichick as a NY Giants coach = drink a giant sized beer, like those Fosters beers60 Minutes promo = 1 drink per clock tickJason Pierre-Paul's bandaged hand = 1 drinkGraphic about Pats' O-line injuries = 1 drink per injured player mentionedA sign about DeflateGate = 1 drinkThe New York skyline = 1 drinkThe disgusting wastelands of north New Jersey = 1 drinkBob Kraft = 1 drinkKraft talking to someone = drink while he's talkingSo enjoy the Pats-Giants game, get lubed up, and please don't play this drinking game because you'll probably die.Boston Blood Sox[...]

Clay Buchholz re-injures elbow celebrating $13 million option


You thought that was a real headline, right? That's how fragile Clay Buchholz is. And the Red Sox have picked up his option for 2016, worth $13 million. Buchholz, when healthy, is incredibly streaky. He can rip off 8 to 10 Ace-like starts, then suck for weeks. From season to season, month to month, start to start, you have no idea which Clay Buchholz will show up. Here is the roller coaster ride of his ERAs for the past 5 seasons: 3.48, 4.56, 1.74, 5.34, 3.26. He's never had consecutive seasons with ERAs within 1 run of each other.

The one thing you can rely on with Clay is that he'll get injured. He's 31 and he's only started 20+ games in 3 seasons. He's never started 30.

The argument for exercising the option is that $13 million isn't a ton of money, and it's only one year. And as I said, Buchholz when healthy is capable of brilliance. So why not? Minimal risk, potential for high reward.

But $13 million is too much for unreliability. I love low risk/high reward ventures. Not when the guy is as inconsistent as Buchholz, and ALSO as injury prone. The injury isn't even a risk, it's essentially a sure thing.

Another reason to not want Buchholz is that due to he unreliability, you're going to have to make sure you have 6 potential starters available. Either that or try to acquire one in June or July when his arm breaks down. And good luck finding a replacement for him if he falls apart in September. By keeping Buchholz, it forces you to also get some form of insurance.

It comes down to this: If he were a free agent, would you want to spend $13 million on him? I wouldn't.

Even as a back of the rotation guy, he's too unreliable. I'd rather have a mediocre innings eater that I could depend on to keep the team in games and preserve the bullpen. Give me 28 starts and 160 innings of decent pitching. With Buchholz it's 10 to 29 starts, and 100-200 innings, some great, some awful.

In 4 of Buchholz's 18 starts last season, he failed to go 5 innings. It was 6 times in 2014. About every 5 starts he'll drop a turd on the mound and you'll have difficulty clawing back to get into the game. Not to mention tax your bullpen in the process.

The only acceptable role for Buchholz is at the back of a rotation that's so strong up front that it doesn't really matter what you have as a 4 or 5 starter. In which case, $13 million is too much to spend on a guy whose role doesn't matter. And it's too much to spend on a guy whose only predictable attribute is that he will get hurt at some point and force you to find someone else to start for him.

DraftKings and FanDuel players should consider suing the Colts for falsifying injury reports


I don't think stretching the truth on an injury report is a big deal. Unless you're the Colts. Unless you're the team that measured an opposing team's footballs without realizing that air pressure is affected by temperature and humidity. Unless you're the team that leaked the story to your mouthpiece Bob Kravitz hours after you got the tar beat out of you (mostly in the half of the game played with "legal" footballs).

It's sort of like arguing with someone online, and correcting their grammar or spelling. Once you do that you'd better make sure you use the right your/you're, it's/its, and then/than. And if you don't, every little mistake of yours is fair game.

Once you open that door of publicly tattling on another team for possibly breaking a rule, you'd better make sure you follow the rules to the letter. All the rules. Each and every stipulation in the book. Such as fully disclosing the nature of your most important player's injuries. As the NFL says "This policy is of paramount importance in maintaining the integrity of the game."

Integrity. The Colts violated a rule that is of "paramount importance" to the game's "integrity."

And it's not just the integrity of football games being jeopardized by the Colts' deception. With the explosion of daily fantasy sports on sites like Draft Kings and Fan Duel, where millions of dollars change hands every week, the accuracy of injury information is now similar to the accuracy of publicly owned corporations issuing earnings reports. Huge amounts of money is at stake. And publishing false injury information is like a company failing to report a loss.

How many people added Andrew Luck to their teams in the past few weeks, under the pretense that he had recovered from an arm injury but was otherwise healthy? What about TY Hilton or Donte Moncrief? How would knowledge of his rib injury have affected people's strategies? And might Draft Kings and Fan Duel have possibly modified their salary cap number for Luck if they'd known the truth?

And who had inside information about the true nature of Luck's injuries? Did any of them have Draft Kings or Fan Duel accounts? Do their friends or relatives?

In this absurdly litigious society, the Colts have opened themselves up to huge legal action. And if you picked Luck for your fantasy team, or might have picked him at a lower price, then you should call your lawyer and file suit.Take it all the way to the 2nd Circuit if you have to.

The rules are the rules, Colts. You're the ones who made a big public deal about the rules a few months ago. Which was especially pathetic since the crux of the story was that the "illegal" footballs were removed from the game, which is also when you started getting stomped on.

You couldn't beat the Patriots on the field, so you decided to beat them with the rule book. And now we see that you suck at that too. Almost as badly as you suck on the field.

Why is Tuukka Rask starting tonight?


You can't say anything negative about Rask without qualifying your remarks, or risk the scorn of his many defenders. And I don't know why. His play has been shabby and lazy this season. In his career he's never come up big in a playoff series when the Bruins have needed him to. His play was one of the primary reasons the Bruins lost a 3-0 series lead to the Flyers in 2010. And the best thing to happen to the 2010-11 Bruins was Rask losing the starting job to Thomas.

Yet any legitimate criticism of his play is often met with excuses and my favorite "He's not the reason they lost." (even though his job is to be a reason the team wins, not to just not be a reason they lose)

But let's limit our scrutiny of sacred cow Tuukka Rask to October of 2015. And let's also not talk about his play as a percentage of the blame pie for the Bruins' struggles. It doesn't matter if he's only 10% responsible for the B's losses, or 5% or less than 1%. His quality of play is what matters, and it's below the standards of an NHL goalie, let alone one of the allegedly better goalies in the League.

He's been lackadaisical, imprecise, passive. He cuts off angles incorrectly, he handles the puck awkwardly, and his form has been allowing pucks to leak through. He's done the bare minimum of his job. He's not the cause of the Bruins' losing, but he's not doing much to cause them to win.

So why is he in net tonight instead of Jonas Gustavsson? J-Goose hasn't been amazing, but he is trying. Unlike Rask, who seems to be trying to be benched or traded. Don't the Bruins want to reward effort and punish apathy? Jonas Gustavsson has been playing the best that Jonas Gustavsson has been playing. Rask is playing nowhere near the best that he can play.

The Bruins have 3 wins this season, 2 of those were with Gustavsson in net. I'm not saying the B's should trade Rask, or permanently put Gustavsson ahead of Rask on the depth chart. But Rask shouldn't be starting right now. Send Rask a message and play the goalie who is giving you 100% and winning.

I want the Cubs to lose tonight so I can stop rooting for the Mets


I don't like the Cubs. I don't like the general attitude that seems to define the essence of being a Cubs fan: Be happy to lose. It's not that they don't want to see their team win, it just isn't a priority to them. Or at best, it has no impact on their mood. There are more important things than winning: beer, summer afternoon sunshine, and having a good time at Wrigley is what matters most. If Cubs fans were told that moving out of Wrigley into a modern ballpark with luxury boxes would increase their chances of winning a World Series, I doubt they'd want to do it.

You know the phrase "Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing?" Cubs fans are satisfied with just the first part.

I like Theo Epstein. I like Jon Lester. I outright hate Joe Maddon, and that hatred outweighs any positive feelings I have for Epstein or Lester. Maddon is obnoxious. His teams are obnoxious. If he wins a World Series, the obnoxiousness will only increase exponentially.

The Cubs are not kindred to the pre-2004 Red Sox. Even the nature of the team's two Curses are different. The Red Sox sold Babe Ruth and a number of other great players to the Yankees, and the Sox paid their penance for those sins for nearly 9 decades. The Cubs pissed off a guy with a goat, and then they weren't good for a century. Great story.

Cubs fans aren't frustrated or cranky or sarcastic enough to compare to the fellowship of the miserable that were Red Sox fans before 2004. Red Sox fans were tortured. Red Sox fans cared. Cubs fans do not.

Look at Red Sox fans' reaction to the waves of Pink Hat that infiltrated Fenway after 2004. The Pink Hats didn't care if the Sox won or who was on the team and what role they played, they just wanted to go to Fenway and take a selfie of themselves eating a hot dog. #WallyWave

All Cubs fans are Pink Hats! Their priorities are the exact same. Fuck that.

I don't want that content with failure Chicago fanbase to be rewarded with a World Series. I don't want Joe Maddon's already gargantuan ego to be augmented by a World Series ring on his finger. I don't want to hear about goats or Back to the Future II anymore. So let's go Mets.

And please, Mets, finish it tonight so I can stop hating myself for rooting for a New York team.

Patriots don't get revenge, but get a W and a few LOLs


It wasn't the embarrassing blowout that many Patriots fans had been hoping for and many sports pundits had predicted. But there's still embarrassment. There's still Tom Brady being amazing. There's still a Patriots win over the Colts.

You were never going to get "revenge" in this game, Pats fans. But the chance to reassert your superiority over the Colts while simultaneously laughing at their buffoonery carries with it a certain satisfaction.

The Patriots didn't let the hype around this game affect them. They played with focus and concentration. They made adjustments. They were patient. The Colts, on the other hand, played with too much urgency. They tried too hard to write the script of the game instead of just letting it happen. The fake punt Snapfu (term coined by Grantland's Bill Barnwell) was a perfect example of the Colts trying to force the game to play out a certain way. Just punt. Or fake.

Seriously, Pagano, you're going to go after the Patriots by trying to out-coach them? That was the "weakness" you attacked?

The Colts were able to keep this game close thanks to plays like Julian "Nine Fingers" Edelman bobbling a pass, giving Mike Adams an easy pick 6. Indy had a strong first drive as well, but even that series was a fraction of an inch away from ending with 0 points. It was a 21-20 Indy lead going into halftime, but at no point did the Colts have a firm grip on the game.

The Pats benefited from what was probably a bad call on an Indy onside kick. That was luck. What makes the good teams great is capitalizing on lucky bounces and calls. The Pats did that a few plays later when LeGarrette Blount ran for a 38-yard TD.

Danny Amendola had a big game, which was pivotal with Julian Edelman's bent pinkie finger. Edelman and Jamie Collins made the most athletic plays of the game, Edelman twisting inside defenders on a 4th down run, Collins leaping over a long-snapper to block a PAT.

And Tom Brady was Tom Brady. That interception that wasn't his fault was his first of the season. He was mobile inside the pocket, giving himself time to make plays. What continues to impress me the most about Brady is his inhuman ability to not be distracted by all the noise and the things that would affect normal human beings like us.

So the Indy game is over. And we're on to New York and the Jets. And it's for first place in the division. That's not a typo.

Patriots - Colts drinking game: DeflateGate Revenge Edition


It's time for revenge. Because somehow beating the Colts by 50+ points will make up for the months of misinformed "11 of 12 footballs being 2+ PSI under" bogus stories that the NFL leaked (what former Jets employees leaked, so the Day of Vengeance should be next Sunday when the Jets come to Gillette). Will beating the Colts by 7 touchdowns put all the BS back into the mouths of morons like Michael Felger? Will a thorough and complete beatdown of the Colts atone for the lack of fact-checking by ESPN and the rest of the sports media, and the subsequent lack of apology for being completely wrong, and allowing themselves to be used as the propaganda arm of the NFL?No.This game isn't about revenge. It's about winning, and winning against a team you have comprehensively dominated for years. And if it's a win by 1 point, I think that'd be so much better than winning by 50. It would be more heart-breaking, more of a tease. Furthermore, it would also trick the Colts into thinking that they're close to the Patriots, just a few minor adjustments away from being contenders. That kind of false hope is priceless, and would be a true revenge. Let them think they're close so they don't fire their horrible GM or their foolish head coach, and don't tell Andrew Luck to stop turning the ball over. So while part of me wants this to be a 50+ point slaughter, part of me also wants this to be a closely fought struggle. Just to fool the Colts that they're in the Patriots' league. False hope is true torture.Anyway, here's a drinking game you can play during the football game. Please make sure you do two things before playing this: #1. call out of work on Monday because you'll be quite incapacitated. #2. Put your last will and testament in order, because it will be needed.The rules of the game (which must be strictly adhered to, or players will be suspended for 4 weeks, and there will be a loss of draught picks, which means you won't be able to pick which beer you drink)...Anytime a commentator says..."Deflate" or any form of the word - take 1 drink of beerA word that ends with "-Gate" - take 1 drink of beerSomething about DeflateGate without saying "deflate" - drink for 12.5 seconds"Air" = 1 drink"Pressure" = 1 drink"Goodell" = 1 drink"Indianapolis" = 1 drink"AFC" = 1 drink"Championship" = 1 drink"Revenge" = 1 drink"Brady" = 1 drink"Gronk" = 1 drink"Luck" = 1 drinkA stupid pun and/or play on words involving the word "luck" (e.g. "luck of the draw," if the Colts run a QB draw) = 1 shot of hard liquor"Al" = 1 drink"C(h)ris" = 1 drink"Bob" = 1 drink"Michele" = 1 drink"D'Qwell" = 1 drink, 1 shot of NyquilAnytime this happens...The Patriots score = drink for as many seconds as the Patriots have points (you must also drink after PATs)A DraftKings or FanDuel commercial = take 1 drinkAir pressure is mentioned = drink 11 of 12 ounces of beerA penalty = 1 drinkTom Brady points out the "mike" = 1 drink, bonus points for drinking from Mike's Hard LemonadeBrady says all or part of "Alpha Milk" = 1 drink, bonus points for drinking a White RussianBrady holds the ball for longer than 2 seconds = 1 drinkRob Gronkowski throws somebody out of the club = finish your beerGronk scores = 1 drinkGronk spikes = finish your beer, then spike the container (bonus points for spiking glass bottles/mugs)Jamie Collins makes a big play = 1 drinkJulian Edelman makes a guy miss = 1 drinkDion Lewis makes a guy miss = 1 drinkThe Patriots run for 5+ yards = 1 drinkKick or punt return = drink during entire returnTouchback = 1 drinkMatthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkAndrew Luck turnover = 1 whole beerAnytime this is on screen...A banner =  1 drink per banner (t[...]

SVP vs DFS: Scott Van Pelt takes on daily fantasy instead of stupid gambling laws


ESPN's Scott Van Pelt wants daily fantasy sports to drop the "charade" that it isn't gambling. You can watch his short monologue on the subject here. Before I discuss the material of his argument, I want to applaud him for having the balls to make it. DraftKings and ESPN have a huge partnership deal, and daily fantasy sports has become a massive source of advertising revenue. I'll also compliment SVP on the pace and structure of his argument. It's very well put together.And I don't disagree with his premises, just the conclusion, and just the fact that he makes the argument at all. The easy way to describe daily fantasy is to say it's gambling. So he's right. Personally, I'd argue that it's gambling and a skill game. I'd also argue that poker, sports betting, and horse betting are also skill games, but most people treat those as gambling. The skill involved is to capitalize on other players who don't know what they're doing as well as you.So daily fantasy shouldn't be much different. So why can't they just admit that it's gambling? Drop the charade, right Scott?Because in this country we have stupid and nonsensical gambling laws that force you to avoid the G-word at all costs. We also have pious institutions like the NCAA that despise the stigma of gambling while they simultaneously benefit from it. Instead of going after daily fantasy's charade, SVP should ask why the charade is necessary at all.In Massachusetts, gambling is illegal. Unless it's through the state run lottery, or at a casino sanctioned by the state. As long as the State House gets a piece of the action, they're fine with gambling. Otherwise, it's against the law. The government might as well say "Gambling is wrong, unless we do it."The NCAA recently announced that student-athletes who play daily fantasy will lose a year of eligibility. But when March Madness comes around and people fill out brackets with NCAA logos on them, I don't hear much preaching from the NCAA about the evils of gambling. After all, those brackets are used strictly for fun, and not gambling, right?I used to play $5 games of online poker until Congress made it next to impossible to deposit or withdraw money from online poker sites. This caused the reputable sites to stop doing business with US players altogether. One of the major laws that began this crushing of online poker in America (the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act or UIGEA) specifically stated that fantasy sports was not considered gambling. Fantasy sports was a game of skill. This is the law that allowed daily fantasy to one day grow into what it is today.So I can buy $100 worth of scratch tickets, or play in a $200 million multi-state lottery, or go down to Plainridge Park and sit in front of a slot machine for 16 hours, and it's all legal, because the government has a stake in those games. I can also pick a fantasy football team for Sunday's games and risk $20 to potentially win $1,000,000, or risk $1 in hopes of winning $20, and it's legal. Because the law says it's not gambling. If it were gambling, it would be illegal.So why the hell would DraftKings or FanDuel call themselves gambling sites if the reason they are legal and allowed to do business is because the law says they're not gambling sites? That's like demanding that CVS and Walgreen's call themselves drug dealers and not pharmacies.Maybe, Mr. Van Pelt, you should go after the rampant hypocrisy found in this country's gambling laws. Maybe you should point out that sports betting is and has always been a huge ratings booster for the NCAA, NFL, and all other sports that ESPN covers, even while those leagues publicly con[...]

Patriots-Steelers drinking game: Super Bowl banner and NFL kickoff edition


It's here! Actual football returns! Finally when we see "Patriots vs." or "Tom Brady vs." it won't be describing a court case. Instead of cross examinations, it's now time for crossing routes. Instead of filing motions, we'll have receivers in motion. Here's a drinking game to play while enjoying the Patriots begin their title defense against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Enjoy the game, do your job, and get lubed up responsibly (which means you should not, under any circumstances, actually play this game)...Anytime a commentator says..."Champions" = take 1 drink of beer, and let out a satisfied sigh"Super Bowl" = 1 drink"Banner" = 1 drink"Ring(s)" = 1 drink"4-time" = 4 drinks"Do your job" = finish your beer"Brady" = drink for 12 seconds"Butler" = drink for 21 secondsAny form of the word "win" or "winner" = 1 drink"ESPN" or "Chris Mortensen" = drink 11 of 12 beers in a 12-pack"Air pressure" or "PSI" = drink for 12.5 secondsAnything about court cases = drink loudly enough to drown them outAny word ending in "-gate" = 1 drink"Suspended" = 1 drink, bonus points for smoking a blunt if they mention LeGarrette Blount"Season" = 1 drink"We're on to..." = 1 shot of liquorAnytime this happens...Touchback = 1 drinkKick or punt return = drink for the duration of the returnGronkowski scores a TD = finish your beer, spike the can/bottle (bonus points for spiking glass bottles)Brady throws to someone besides Edelman or Gronk = 1 drinkThey actually catch the ball = 1 drinkThe Patriots go no huddle = 1 drink per snapBrady says "Alpha milk" = 1 drink, bonus points if you're drinking a White RussianBrady points out the "Mike" = 1 drink, bonus points if you're drinking Mike's Hard Lemonade (only if you're a girl, deduct points if you're a guy)Matthew Slater makes a special teams tackle = 1 drinkJerod Mayo makes a big play = 1 drink, 1 shot of mayonnaiseThe Patriots give up a 10+ yard pass play in soft zone coverage = 1 drinkYou think Roethlisberger will be sacked but he escapes = 1 drinkYou miss Vince Wilfork = 1 drink, 1 shot, eat a turkey legAnytime this is on screen...Roger Goodell at Gillette Stadium = HAHAHAHAHAHAHAA shot of footballs and/or ball boys = 1 shot of liquorHighlights of Super Bowl 49 = finish your beerHighlights of another Super Bowl (including Pittsburgh's SBs) = drink an entire beerA Lombardi Trophy = 1 drink per trophyA Super Bowl ring = 1 drink per ringA banner = 1 drink per bannerA sign about Brady and/or Goodell = 1 drinkBob Kraft = 1 drinkBob Kraft talking to someone = drink the entire time he's talkingErnie Adams = drink a bottle of wine by the end of the gameThe number 12 (including scoreboard and graphics) = 1 drinkA graphic of playoff/championship stats (for the Pats or Steelers) = 1 drinkBonus drinking game rule:Every time Tom Brady takes the field, remember that Roger Goodell and the NFL wanted him banned for this game as well as the next three. So raise your drink, say a toast to Tom, and a big "Fuck you" to Goodell.Boston Blood Sox[...]

Tom Brady freed, Judge Berman did his job


Tom Brady is one of the best players in NFL history. And now he's defeated the NFL in court (in the court the NFL chose). Although it's more accurate to say that the NFL defeated itself.

Some of the key points Judge Berman made in his decision are:

That Brady was never given notice that "general awareness" of football deflation and/or not cooperating with an investigation would result in a 4-game suspension.

That during the appeal process, Brady's camp was never given access to Jeff Pash.

That steroid usage was not comparable to general awareness of ball deflation.

Judge Berman started this appeal proceeding by forcing the NFL to shed its cloak of BS arguments for suspending Brady. What the League was ultimately left with was relying on its near absolute authority to discipline players, granted to the League by the CBA. But with that authority must come responsibility to do that fairly and consistently. Which the NFL didn't do. The League didn't notify players that they might be suspended for a quarter of the season for such a transgression. And the League didn't adhere to its own process when it denied Brady's lawyers the chance to question Jeff Pash.

From the genesis of DeflateGate, the NFL has changed its reasoning for investigating/punishing Brady. At first it was his general awareness, then his lack of cooperation. Then the destruction of his phone was the impetus behind suspending Brady. And in front of Judge Berman, the NFL decided to equate its PED policy with its new PSI policy, and also claim they had absolute power to discipline players.

Their lack of consistency ultimately cost them this case.

Roger Goodell and the NFL did more to lose this than Pete Carroll did to lose the Super Bowl.

Goodell and Mike Kensil were vindictive against the Patriots. But it was Tom Brady who has been vindicated.

Patriots-Packers drinking game: Thirsty Thursday pre-season opener edition


We're finally going to see football players on a football field instead of appearing in a court room. And even though the first pre-season game doesn't mean much, it's still football. And it will still be the Super Bowl Champions taking the field.

So here's a drinking game that will help you pass out before all the starters are taken out of the game. And if you actually play this game, you'll be on to alcohol poison, the emergency room, and then the morgue. Here it is...

Anytime a commentator says...
"Deflate" = take 1 drink of beer
"Gate" = 1 drink
"Wells" = 1 drink
"Goodell" = 1 drink
"PSI" = 1 drink
"Pressure" = 1 drink
"Court" = 1 drink
"Appeal" = 1 drink
"Mortensen tweet" = drink 11 of 12 beers in a 12 pack
"Suspension" = drink a mixed drink (a.k.a. a suspension, for you science nerds out there)
"Garoppolo" = 1 drink
"Pre-season" = 1 drink
"Incomplete" = 1 drink

Anytime this happens...
Touchback = 1 drink
Kick return = drink until the return is over
Turnover = finish your beer
The Patriots go no huddle = 1 drink per snap
A Patriots player you don't know touches the ball = 1 drink
An announcer is unsure of a player's name = 1 shot of liquor
Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady are compared = drink until it stops
You think you saw Vince Wilfork, but you didn't = finish your beer, drink a shot, eat a turkey leg
The announcers stop talking about what's happening in the game = 1 drink

Anytime this is on screen...
A shot of a football or footballs = 1 shot of liquor
A ballboy = 1 drink
Bill Belichick = 1 drink
Tom Brady = drink for 12 seconds
The number 12 (including graphics) = 1 drink
Bob Kraft = 1 drink
Kraft talking to someone = drink the entire time he's talking
The words "Free Brady" = 1 drink
Any sign or shirt with a hashtag on it = 1 drink
The Lombardi Trophy = 1 drink per trophy
A ring = 1 drink per ring

Bonus Obscure Player Scavenger Hunt!!!
Drink every time these players are spotted on the field. And the first to announce they've spotted them also has the authority to dispense drink commands to others until the next player is spotted. And just like discipline in the NFL, appealing these drink commands is futile. So here are the players to watch for...

Jonathan Krause, #16 - WR
Shaq Mason, #69 - OL
Tyler Gaffney, #36 - RB

Geneo Grissom, #48 - listed at DL but played some TE in college
Dax Swanson, #25 - DB
Xzavier Dickson (not a typo), #42 - LB

So there you go! Get lubed up responsibly folks!

When idiots conspire: How the meatheads running the NFL sabotaged their own conspiracy to hurt the Patriots


DeflateGate. Like Brett Favre, every time this story seems about to go away, it comes back.The more we learn about DeflateGate, the clearer it becomes that high ranking NFL officials were hell bent on crucifying the Patriots. But they were careless and stupid with their conspiracy. And they underestimated the willingness of one man to fight; one of the most competitive and mentally toughest athletes in the history of sports: Tom Brady.The false details in the Mortensen tweet launched this story into orbit. Despite pleas from the Patriots, the NFL didn't correct the leak. They allowed inaccurate information to be the basis of the biggest sports story of the year. The true pressure measurements were revealed 106 days later in the Wells Report.But whoever leaked the inaccurate details to Mortensen, and whoever decided not to correct them, should have known that at some point the truth would come out. And people would ask questions about the NFL's motives behind the leak and their decision not to correct it.The Mortensen tweet has become irrelevant as evidence against the Patriots. But in the case against the NFL, it's Exhibit A.Why fill the Wells Report with so much shoddy science and desperately convoluted logic? The Wells-Pash Report didn't make the NFL's case, it undermined it. For example, referee Walt Anderson's recollection of which pressure gauge he used pre-game, was refuted based on a shaky scientific argument that relied on Anderson's recollection of the Colts' balls' pre-game pressures. So Anderson's memory was deemed unlikely to be true, based on the reliability of his memory. Why allow that to be published?The Wells Report was never about finding truth, it was about finding guilt. It didn't make the case against the Patriots or Brady, it helped start the case against the NFL.The League's motives in DeflateGate became clear when the Patriots and Tom Brady were severely punished. The team in part for previous rules violations (SpyGate). And Brady for being "generally aware," and for not handing over his cell phone.Did Troy Vincent and the NFL do any research into their own precedents? Didn't they remember Brett Favre being fined $50k in 2010 for not turning over his cell phone? Or 2009 when a Jets equipment staffer was suspended for tampering with a kicking ball, but the kicker wasn't punished at all, or even investigated?Why was the NFL so harsh with the punishments? Imagine if the NFL had just fined Brady. This story might have gone to sleep long ago. But just fining Brady was unacceptable. Why?The motives for harshness and revenge against the Patriots are abundant. Goodell wanted to rebuild his reputation as League Sheriff. Former Jets president Mike Kensil's motives are obvious. The Ravens were infuriated about ineligible receivers the week prior. A number of other teams think the Patriots are pathological cheaters. Supported by a handful of owners, the same executives who leaked fake air pressures to Mortensen were likely the same people who pressured for and had the power to enforce the harshest possible punishment.Brady became the scapegoat. The NFL needed a specific villain to blame. Witch hunts need a witch. Pinning such a huge scandal on two no-name team employees wouldn't satisfy.Brady was singled out because he was mentioned in texts. Because he refused to hand over his phone. And if he appealed, the NFL knew they could have their Meathead in Chief Goodell hear the appeal and then deny it. So he'd be compelled to settle (and admit guilt) or go all the way to Court.[...]

Roger Goodell and the NFL crave headlines, not justice


"Tom Brady destroyed his phone" is the latest salacious and headline hungry statement/leak that the NFL has disbursed in its efforts to make Brady look as guilty as possible, and to make Roger Goodell look like the punisher of the wicked. This was never about PSI, it was about perception: Goodell's perception as the strict disciplinarian, and the perception that some owners around the NFL have of the Patriots getting away with cheating.Brady destroyed his phone. He destroyed his phone? He destroyed his phone! Why did he destroy his phone? Who destroys their phone? Why would an innocent man destroy his phone? The dramatic phrasing was intended to make headlines. The NFL didn't just break news, they wrote the first line of every story.How many times did you hear the word "destroy" in the past 24 hours? The NFL could have said the phone was "replaced," or "disposed of." They could have said the memory card was destroyed, or erased, or swiped. Nope, the whole phone was destroyed. And if Brady had agreed to admit his guilt and accept a reduced suspension, the NFL would have kept his destroyed phone a secret.Think about. This "damning" evidence, this so-called "smoking gun" was something the NFL was happy to keep under wraps, so long as Brady gave them the confession they wanted.The NFL lacks evidence, so they deploy innuendo. Whatever facts there are behind Brady's phone being disposed of become irrelevant. How did he destroy it? Was it physically destroyed or just dismantled and the information erased? Was it smashed to bits or dropped in water or blown up or melted or hurled into space?We don't know the details, and the NFL doesn't care to know them. Details are important when seeking justice. And their lack of importance in the DeflateGate maelstrom demonstrates how uninterested in truth and justice Goodell and the NFL have been since this whole thing started.The investigation into DeflateGate was only secondarily about trying to find out if the Patriots deflated footballs, and if so, under whose authority and with whose knowledge. The primary goal of the Wells Report, and of every leak and NFL statement, has been to make Brady and the Patriots look as guilty as possible.A referee claimed to use one gauge to test footballs, but his memory was refuted by the Wells Report, because it destroyed the NFL's case. His memory was deemed faulty based on the reliability of his own memory. I'm not making that up. You can't make that up. His recollection of the Colts' ball's pressures was used as the basis of the argument to refute his recollection of which pressure gauge he used. So his memory is unreliable, based on an argument that relied on his memory.Remember the leak that broke this entire story? The Patriots were said to have been caught with 11 of 12 footballs 2+ pounds of pressure under the legal minimum. The footballs were indeed below the 12.5 minimum, but not by as much as the leak and the ensuing story claimed. They were, according to one gauge, deflated about as much as the Laws of Physics would predict. But that fact wasn't revealed for months. Even though the NFL knew the leak was inaccurate.Information with incorrect details was leaked, reported, and then was used as a foundation for the biggest story of the 2014 NFL season. The NFL knew the leaked information was inaccurate, and did nothing to correct it.Why?Why be so wary of details? Because details don't matter in a witch hunt. Details don't matter when the owners of the Colts and Ravens want to see th[...]

Tom Brady was stupid to destroy his phone, but I understand


The NFL for some reason needed a few weeks to come to the decision to do nothing about Tom Brady's suspension, and keep it at 4 games. This was announced literally on the eve of training camp, with Patriots players scheduled to report on Wednesday the 29th and Brady himself already in Foxborough. The bombshell with the announcement is the fact that Tom Brady evidently destroyed his cell phone during the investigation.

Frankly, the cell phone being destroyed is impossible to defend or explain. The NFL using the word "destroyed" is intentionally dramatic. It conjures an image of Tom Brady blowing his phone up with an M-80, or dropping it in a river in the wilderness. What actually happened to the phone is probably less theatrical. How many of us actually know what happens when we trade in or donate our phones?

Even if the phone was the smoking gun, you still don't destroy it. You just refuse to hand it over. You accidentally leave it next to a magnet, or drop it in the pool, or lose it while hiking, or let Gronk spike it into oblivion as an apparent joke.

It was not smart for Brady to have his phone "destroyed."

But I understand it. The witch hunt atmosphere created by the NFL's leaks and the media firestorm around this story would make it difficult to consistently make calculated and correct decisions. Brady couldn't simply admit guilt for this misdemeanor because it was being treated like a felony. Admitting guilt would tarnish your legacy and everything you've worked for your entire life, not to mention demoralize your teammates before the biggest game of their lives. Brady couldn't be honest so all he could do was shape, twist, and hide the truth as best as he could.

Some people are good at hiding the truth and deceiving people. You don't even notice them. Others aren't very good at it.

I'm not going to defend Tom Brady as innocent. I am going to point out how absurd this story has been from the beginning. This was a set-up. This was Brady getting caught stealing a candy bar and getting charged with grand theft auto, because some elements of the NFL want to see him pay.

Brady evidently broke a rule, got caught, and didn't come clean. He should be punished for violating the initial rule, which was an equipment violation. Should he be punished for obstructing "justice?" I'm not so sure. The NFL didn't seem to be seeking justice, it seemed to be seeking to destroy his reputation. That's vengeance, not justice.

Pedro Martinez is greatness beyond greatness


Pedro Martinez was by far the best thing going during the Great Boston Sports Depression between Larry Bird and Tom Brady. Before Boston teams won Super Bowls and World Series, all we fans could be proud of was a skinny, cocky, unbelievably dominant Dominican pitcher.It can be difficult to remember the mindset we had in the late '90s and very early 2000s, before the Patriots won the Super Bowl, before the Curse was Reversed, before Boston teams claimed 9 titles in 14 years. And with the abundance of Boston sports heroes in this young century (Brady, Ortiz, Garnett, Thomas, and so on), we kind of forget how special Pedro Martinez actually was, and how for a few years he provided us with that feeling of joy and sense of superiority once every 5 days. So let's remind ourselves of his greatness beyond greatness.From 1997 to 2000, he was perhaps the best pitcher of all-timeAt the height of the most offensive era in MLB history, Pedro Martinez was by far the best pitcher. From '97 to 2000 he won 77 games (19.25 per season). He struck out 1,153 (288.25 per season) and had a 2.12 ERA. In those 4 homerun heavy seasons, he only allowed 68 balls to leave the park. He allowed an impossibly low 9 homeruns in 1999, only 0.34% of the total homeruns hit by AL batters.He won 3 Cy Youngs in this stretch, and probably should have won an MVP. But we'll get to that later.In 2000 he struck out almost 9 times as many batters (8.88) as he walked. In 1999 he allowed 0.4 HR per every 9 IP. In '97 the barely 170 pound Pedro threw 241.1 innings. In 2000 his WHIP of 0.737 set the record for the lowest of all time, 0.032 lower than Guy Hecker's WHIP in 1882. Yes, Pedro broke a 118-year-old record. And he did that in the steroid era, in a league with a DH.While sluggers were smashing Roger Maris' single-season HR record, Pedro was challenging Bob Gibson's ERA record (which was set on a higher mound, and with pitchers batting). Pedro Martinez did more to limit offense in the steroid era than mandatory PED testing eventually did.His playoff performances were legendaryIn Game 5 of the 1999 ALDS against Cleveland, Pedro Martinez pitched 6 no-hit innings of relief in the deciding game of the series. Despite his arm being worn out and his fastball considerably slowed, he held an offense that had scored 1,000+ runs that season, to zero hits. Manny Ramirez, Jim Thome, the Alomars, Kenny Lofton, all of them failed to get hits off Pedro. He entered the game when it was 8-8, the Sox won 12-8, and claimed their first playoff series since 1986.Then in Game 3 of the '99 ALCS, Pedro beat the Yankees with 7 scoreless innings. He only allowed 2 hits and struck out 12. It was New York's only loss of the post-season.He could have been the winner of Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS if not for poor management. Had Grady Little gone to the bullpen to finish the game, few people in Boston would know who Aaron Boone was. Pedro was brilliant for 7 innings, then began to falter in the 8th. Had he been removed, the Red Sox probably would have gone to the World Series, and had a good chance against the Marlins.He was a big part of the Red Sox winning the 2004 World SeriesSince we tend to associate Pedro so much with the pre-2004 era of Red Sox history, we forget how vital he was to the Sox winning the World Series in '04. Not only with his pitching, but just with his presence. His presence on the team made the Sox a contender, and the new ownership parlayed that in their[...]

No more Boston 2024 (thank God)


Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh doesn't want to put taxpayers in the position to pay for cost overruns. That unwillingness to make Boston's citizens the insurance policy for Boston 2024 has resulted in Boston's bid being dropped completely. And thank fucking God for that.

The organizers of Boston 2024 were so sure of their budgeting estimates, that they were willing to put the people of Boston's money on the line to pay in case costs surpassed expectations. That's money that could go to schools, police, fire, public works, snow removal, pothole repair, instead going to pay for a velodrome. Which is a steeply banked bicycle race track. Which nobody has any use for, which is why we don't already have one.

The benefits of hosting the Olympics would have been shared among a select group of rich individuals and companies. It would be a bonanza for Suffolk Construction. Bob Kraft would get a cheap soccer specific stadium for the Revs. Everyone publicly pushing for the games to be here would have seen their wallets fatten, whether through business deals or just the paychecks they get working for the Boston 2024 organization. And if costs exceeded expectation, the people would have paid. While the beneficiaries still got paid the same.

After watching the Olympic debate on Fox 25 last week, my anti-Boston 2024 sentiment went from a small controlled fire to a raging inferno. Steve Pagliuca could not give straight answers to simple questions. Daniel Doctoroff was a smarmy jerk. Every question raised by the media or by people against Boston 2024 was dismissed as "hyperbole," or "inflammatory," or not answered at all.

And the T wouldn't benefit directly from the Olympics. There are no Boston 2024 funds allocated to improving it. The T needs to be fixed on its own, BEFORE 2024. The commuter rail and subway lack modern, functioning equipment. Routes and systems need to be updated. The amount of economic production lost due to public transportation issues is unacceptable for a major city. And we should focus on remedying these problems before taking on the challenge of catering to the Olympics.

The Boston 2024 plan was built by optimistic businessmen who stood to gain from Boston hosting. And if their optimistic cost and revenue estimates didn't come to fruition in reality, the people were going to pay. And that's wrong. You can't have one group of people enjoy the profit while another group takes the risk.

So bon voyage, Boston 2024. To translate intoto Bostonian: Go fuck yourselves.