Monday, September 12, 2005

Big Ben - I'm sorry I ever doubted you

The National Football League has started another season, which means my Thursdays, Sundays, and Mondays are going to be filled once again with joy, disbelief, frustration, dispair, happiness, and beer.

This year's a bit different, though, since I've started a fantasy football team with some buddies and their families and friends. My interests have been spread out over the league, and I now can't focus my hatred on the New England Patriots, since I'm relying on their defense.

I stuck with several of my favorite Pittsburgh Steelers, including second-year quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. I was excited by his regular season performance last year, but in this year's preseason, he wasn't exactly inspiring. I got cold feet and benched him in deference to New Orleans' Aaron Brooks. That cost me 12 points, since Brooks didn't do squat and Big Ben actually came to play, going nine for 11 passing attempts for 218 yards and two touchdowns, and, as the papers seem to all be reiterating, all without a single error.

In reparation for my sin of benching the Toast of the Three Rivers, I think I should probably break down and buy that Number 7 Steelers jersey.

While I missed out on Ben's yards, I benefitted from his recievers. Hines Ward and Antwaan Randle El both racked up some points for me... but not nearly as much as I would have with first-time starting running back Willie Parker, whose 161 yards and touchdown would definitely have helped me out.

All in all, I've got about 53 points sitting on my bench, which means that to win my week one matchup Philadelphia kicker David Akers is going to have to score a couple field goals.

The lesson, of course, is that preseason performance shouldn't be taken too seriously if it doesn't involve injuries.

Others fared either better or worse, including my former first-line and new resident of Yongsan Garrison, the Finch, who's crying in his beer over the fact that his starting quarterback Daunte Culpepper forgot how to play football Sunday.

Weirdness could be found elsewhere as well, as the Oakland Raiders -- along with new acquisition Randy Moss -- gave Tom Brady's Evil Empire (whoops, I mean the Patriots) a run for their money up through the third quarter Thursday night.

Ahh, NFL! How I've missed thee!


ALSO: Sgt. Salemonz is packing up to leave for Iraq. Swing by his place and wish him luck. He's a good man.

UPDATE: Open Post at the Mudville Gazette!