Tag Archives: Tom Brady

NFL Lockout Looms — Will America Crumble?

NFL Lockout

By Thalia Bardell, howiGit Contributing Writer, Boston, MA

Thursday is fast approaching and at the rate the two sides are moving it looks like an NFL lockout is impending. The likelihood that a deal will get done in the next two days is about as likely as Kendrick Perkins returning to the Celtics (too soon for the Perk jokes?). As a Pittsburgh Steelers fan an extended off-season makes me a little nervous. Extra time for Ben Roethlisberger to act like a total goon? I need that like a hole in my head. However, I have to admit that it has been fascinating watching this drama unfold. The last time that the NFL had a work stoppage was 1987 and I was … not even born yet.

When baseball players went on strike during the 1994 season I was seven years old, not yet a Sox fan, and more concerned with getting the training wheels off of my bike. I feel, oddly, like I’m witnessing a piece of history right now. If the owners and players union can’t come to an agreement then I will be in the midst of events that have the opportunity to change the NFL as I know it. To get a tiny glimpse into the inner workings of a sport that I only see from the glamorous outside of televised games, TV endorsements, and Sports Illustrated covers reminds me that sports are a business like everything else. Sure, guys like Ochocinco, Peyton Manning, and Darrelle Revis make the big money – and honestly I don’t really care how they fare in this decision, but it’s the second stringers, the no names, no covers, and no Campbell’s Chunky Soup commercial, “little” guys that interest me the most. These men are simply out there trying to make a buck doing something they love, just as we are, and they don’thave the same amount of time as most of us to do it in. The average length of an NFL player’s career is about three and a half years (perhaps Brett Favre was not included in that calculation) — that’s approximately 56 games. For these guys, to lose even one paycheck is a pay cut they can’t afford.

For the sake of the back-up benchwarmers I hope that the NFL resumes play on schedule next year. But for my self-interest I almost hope that they don’t. I can’t imagine what September will feel like without football (although it would open up more time to watch the Red Sox), but to witness an exercise of worker rights that I actually care about would be interesting to say the least. I’m curious to see the reaction of the players, the fans, and the media if the lockout extends through the summer and threatens the fall. Maybe it’s my age, but I’m history star-struck and, for me, the lack of football might be more exciting than the football itself.

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Ben Roethlisberger — Champion or Chump?

Ben Roethlisberger

By Thalia Bardell, howiGit Contributing Writer, Boston, MA

Well the man certainly hasn’t made any friends over the past few days. Not that he had many before, at least in light of the last couple of off-seasons. Yeah, you know whom I’m talking about. Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Now I’m going to come clean right here – I’m a Pittsburgh Steelers fan, have been since the Kordell Stewart days and boy, were those days awful. But that is beside the point. As a Steeler fan it is impossible for me to forget what happened this past March – Big Ben allegedly sexually assaulting a woman in the seedy bathroom of a Milledgeville, Georgia bar. I must admit, however, that in the excitement of this winning season Ben’s actions had fallen to the back of my mind.

But in the two-week holding period between the championship games and the Super Bowl the media needs something to talk about. Big Ben’s bad behavior – it’s right at the top of the list. No one can get enough of Roethlisberger and for all the wrong reasons; the pot has been stirred and the rumors and questions are swirling again. Did he really assault her? Did he deserve to have his suspension shortened? How many players did NFL commissioner Roger Goodell really talk to? I’ve got Jets fans all over my Facebook wall making underage chick comments. For the record guys, the woman was 20 and last I checked that was over the age of consent — quit being sore losers. But as much as I hate the flak that I take for being a Steeler fan whenever Roethlisberger comes up I think that his behavior deserves to be dissected and that the man needs to take some heat. I’ll be the first person to tell you that as much as I love Roethlisberger on the field for his toughness, strength, and scrambling ability, off the field I think he has behaved like an irresponsible idiot. Frankly, I think the man should be placed on “gym arrest” for the entire off-season, either that or Steelers’ owner Dan Rooney needs to hire a full-time babysitter for him – just make sure she’s really unattractive – and I don’t think he’s willing to do that.

What does Big Ben have to say about all of this? Apparently, he’s a reformed sinner. He’s found out “Just how awesome having an inner peace in life can be.” Really? I haven’t found inner peace and I’ve been practicing yoga for six years and don’t even have a speeding ticket on my record. It’s unbelievable and disingenuous. Nobody in Boston believes the guy; in fact ,people seem even more incensed than when the incident originally happened because of the way Roethlisberger is handling the media. The man shows no remorse, no regret, not a single “I’m sorry for the way I acted” or “it is something that has weighed heavily on my mind.” The fact that he barely faced any consequences doesn’t help his case either – he was not criminally charged and I’m not sure a  four game suspension was enough to teach him a lesson.

So what does Roethlisberger have to do to be redeemed in the eyes of the public? Does he simply need to apologize? Act like he feels at least a little badly about what happened? Or does he need to fall even further – hit rock bottom before fans will begin to redeem him? Look at Michael Vick, he’s not loved for sure, but he served jail time, seemed genuinely repentant over what he’d done, had a great season this year with the Philadelphia Eagles and he’s receiving positive and supportive attention from both media and fans. Dante Stallworth of the Baltimore Ravens served jail time when he struck and killed a construction worker while driving drunk in Miami – and the sports world has seemingly all but forgotten about that. Does Roethlisberger need to get locked up before fans say, yeah, ok, that’s enough. Perhaps he needs to pull a Tiger Woods, go to rehab and then come back and well … suck. Have a losing season; get destroyed up and down the field. There are people who like Tiger better now that he’s showed a little humanity, a little flaw.

As of right now no one is forgiving Roethlisberger because he hasn’t fallen hard enough. He’s committed wrongful actions and suffered no penalty. He’s winning Super Bowl rings and putting up Tom Brady-esque numbers but it’s only making people hate him more. The truth is that Roethlisberger, despite his on field achievements, will never be a Tom Brady, he’ll never be a truly great quarterback – he blew that in a bathroom stall. He wants to be a “role model” he says, wants young kids to wear his jersey. It’s not going to happen Ben; if I ever have a kid he’s getting a number 43 Troy Polamalu jersey and if you make an appearance it’ll be in some lecture about “learning the consequences of one’s actions.”

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Tom Brady — For All You Haters

Tom Brady GQ 25 Coolest Athletes

For Tom Brady, the accolades just keep on coming. And for all of you Brady haters out there who insist that Brady is hated by everyone outside of New England (such a NY thing to say — you think us Boston folks are Boston-centric, yet you’re the ones who refer to NYC as “the city” — talk about obnoxious) here’s proof that you couldn’t be more wrong.

The most recent GQ magazine put together what is honestly an excellent list of The 25 Coolest Athletes of All-Time. You know it! Tom Brady made the list.  I was lucky enough to read the entire article, including a write-up of each athlete on the list. While all of these athletes are pretty damn cool, Brady’s write-up was hysterical. I wanted to include a link to the article, but it’s not available online. The gist of the article was:

Tom brady is too good-looking. Tom Brady is too good at football. That said, he has had a messy swap between an actress and a super model, and he did lose a Super Bowl so he’s not perfect and you can’t hate him. But even when he does mess up, he goes home to a too perfect Brazilian super model who consoles him and gives him massages. He’s too cool, he really is. Just embrace him for being everything you wish you were, and don’t hate.

It’s really is a hysterical article, and it makes a pretty good point. Now I know GQ magazine won’t sell all of you, so you can instead check out this article on ESPN. Brady just won his 2nd AP Offensive Player of the Year award, making him the only quarterback in NFL history to win the award twice. He’s also the only active player to win the award twice. Also, note the statistic showing the highest touchdown to interception ratio in NFL history. Just another statistic where he dominates Peyton Manning, not to mention every other QB in NFL history. You can’t blame Peyton for this one though — interceptions run in the family.

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2010-2011 Patriots: To Address What Happened

Patriots vs Jets

Now….let me first say that being in the Bahamas was a blessing this past week following the Patriots loss to the Jets. I largely avoided the onslaught that came with the loss, although I’m sure I’ll still hear plenty about it. That said, in the spirit of fairness, I must address the topic rather than hiding under a rock. Here’s my take:

Give the Jets complete credit. They played a great game, especially defensively, and Mark Sanchez avoided turnovers. In this case, as opposed to other past Patriots-NY football games, the team that played better won. No doubt about it.

Now I’m faced with a dilemma; who do I root for in the AFC? I’m going to have to go with the Jets, as much as I hate it, because I don’t want Big Ben to get his third ring in Pittsburgh. Ben < Tom, and I don’t want to hear those comparisons. That said, I’m rooting for the Packers to win it all.

A very disappointing end to a great Patriots season. You can’t take anything away from the Pats regular season; a 14-2 record and arguably the best regular season by any quarterback in NFL history were pretty awesome to watch. I’m sure they’ll be back next year, and I know they’ll be extra hungry.

Following a horrible Celtics loss in game 7 of the NBA Finals, an injury plagued Red Sox season, and now this loss, Boston has had a tough go of it lately. What do you have to say about that, Celtics (or Red Sox)?

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Bill Simmons, howiGit Applauds You

Tom Brady Peyton Manning

If you are one of the lucky few who has read my Tom Brady versus Peyton Manning comparison, listened to my constant regurgitation of Brady-Manning facts, or if you just generally despise my Tom Brady man-crush (I just got his Uggs limited edition boots!), you’ve got to read Bill Simmons’ latest article comparing these two quarterbacks. Grab a beer first — this sucker is long — but it’s worth every word.

Special kudos to Billy boy for bringing a Biggie-Tupac parallel to this article — what can I say, I like your style. I don’t like linking to other writers’ articles, because frankly other writers suck. But Bill Simmons has some good taste when it comes to teams he roots for. And with this article, I must say, well done Bill.

Check it out.

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Patriots or Celtics?

Patriots Super Bowl

Question of the day for all y’all — who would you rather win a championship this year, the Boston Celtics or the New England Patriots?

I look at it like this — if Tom Brady wins his 4th Super Bowl this year, you can make an incredible case for him being the best quarterback of all-time. That said, he’s got several good years left. I think that this is the last year that this current group of Celtics has a shot to win, and I think they are hungry after blowing it last season with the NBA championship firmly in their grasp. This group is too good to not have 2 championships. That said, I can’t make up my mind.

Make up yours and tell me why.

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howiGit’s 2010 NFL Playoff Predictions

2010 Super Bowl

The regular season is in the books, the playoffs are set, so without further adieu, here are my picks:

In the AFC…..

Jets-Colts: Colts Win

Ravens-Chiefs: Ravens Win

Ravens-Patriots: Patriots Win

Colts-Steelers: Colts Win

Colts-Patriots: Patriots Win AFC Championship

In the NFC…….

Saints-Seahawks: Saints Win

Packers-Eagles: Packers Win

Saints-Falcons: Falcons Win

Bears-Packers: Packers Win

Packers-Falcons: Packers Win NFC Championship

In the Super Bowl…….

Packers-Patriots: Patriots Win Super Bowl

As I mentioned before, leading the pack causes paranoia. I really didn’t want to pick the Patriots to win, and came very close to choosing another team. While the Pats defense has been great at times, we’ve still managed to let up 30+ points all too frequently. That’s not gonna fly in the playoffs. That said, I’m sticking with the Pats for another Super Bowl title.

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