14:43 – Ray Rice finds a chasm up the middle and goes 83 yards to the house on the game’s first play from scrimmage. Gillette Stadium sounds like the Boston Public Library. Jim Nantz: “Baltimore strikes! And strikes with a big one!”
13:14 – Terrell Suggs slips around his blocker, stripping Brady and recovering the fumble. T-Sizzle apparently shaves every part of his body before games. Matt Light apparently wasn’t prepared for the aerodynamic advantage this technique affords.
10:30 – Le’Ron McClain scores from the 1. Haloti Ngata was in as a tackle eligible. Whenever you can get two of the best 10 names in the league on the field at the same time, good things happen.
10:15 – Ray Lewis comes untouched up the middle and swallows Brady. Lewis, per usual, looks to be in Bill Simmons’ Eff You Mode. Actually, Eff You Mode doesn’t do RayLew justice. No. 52 is in Serengeti Mode. Came across this phrase last night when a female friend described sorority girls waiting for treadmills in a crowded cardio room as “in Serengeti Mode.” Brilliant, Nancy. We’ll flesh this term out in due time. It needs to marinate.
7:55 – Camera catches Wes Welker in the owner’s box with Bob Craft. Wes is flanked on one side by an attractive brunette and on the other by a billionaire. Seems as though Patriots with major knee injuries make huge strides in their personal lives.
4:54 – After Brady’s second turnover in Patriot territory, Willis McGahee catches a screen from Flacco and runs out of bounds at the 4. Over/under on the number of times Willis flashes the “U” today? I say three.
3:55 – Ray Rice scores his second touchdown. 21-0, Ravens. Pacquiao-Hatton was more competitive than this. Hell, the Battle of France was more competitive than this.
3:00 – Ed Reed picks off Brady and pulls a “Reverse Walters” by lateraling to Dawan Landry, who takes it into the Red Zone. Over/under on the number of times Reed flashes the “U” today? I say three.
0:11 – Chris Carr sniffs out a screen pass to Kevin Faulk. Patriots fans are pissed, letting off the loudest of several first-quarter rounds of boos. I would be pissed, too. Why attend a football game in New England when you could be sitting home freezing your ass off in a drafty brownstone?
14:08 – John Harbaugh inexplicably passes up a challenge on a muffed punt. Phil Simms is about to have an aneurysm.
12:17 – Jim Nantz loves saying “Ngata” every bit as much as I do. He yelps it in the same over-the-top castrato Marv Albert uses for his patented “YES!” or Kevin Harlan employs for his own “Right between the eyes!” These guys would have a field day if Haloti ever decides to suit up at power forward for the Knicks. NnnnnnGATA!!!
11:23 – Overachieving, white, undersized slot receiver Julian Edelman catches a touchdown pass from Brady. 24-7, Ravens. Predictably, camera flashes to Welker (because, um, he’s white, too?) who is giving awkward does-this-mean-I-have-to-stick-around-till-the-fourth-quarter? high-fives to Craft and his stuffy cohorts. Also, we have confirmation: Welker’s girlfriend is, in fact, extremely hot. Wes is making the leap from folk hero to legend right before our eyes.
6:50 – Junior Seau makes a play on McClain behind the line to set up 3rd and 13. Seau takes a page out of Neon Deion’s Falcon days, going absolutely berserk in celebration with his team down 17. Junior is screaming, pumping his fist and head-butting his teammates. He’s jacked that his team’s still in this game. Or maybe just jacked to still be in the league.
4:00 – The Ravens Lewis makes his 400th tackle today. Nantz and Simms go gaga, gushing with the same he’s-still-making-plays-after-all-these-years spiel they mastered 4 seasons ago. Over/under on the number of times Lewis flashes the “U” today? I say three.
2:00 – Two-minute warning. CBS is on its upteenth commercial break, and still no Nvidia commercial. Saw a bunch of these during Jets-Bengals on NBC yesterday. Not sure why. A few things the 18-49 male demographic isn’t thinking during a football game: 1) I can really use some probiotic yogurt to wash down all these Doritos! 2) What’s the most effective product to combat constipation in middle-aged women? 3) Jamie Lee Curtis is still smoking hot!
:55 – Big Vince and Brandon Meriweather team up on McGahee as he stretches for a first down to run out the clock. In The 305, they refer to such occurrences as ‘Cane-on-‘Cane violence.
Halftime: JB announces the studio crew. “I’m James Brown with Dan, Bill, Shannon and Boomer.” It looks funny in print, too. In a group interview with Ladainian Tomlinson, Marino asks LT about next week’s matchup with the Jets leading with, “It looks as though Baltimore will win this football game… You’ve never played the New York Jets this year… Can you tell us what you think about the Jets?” This, kids, is what you call a “non sequitor.”
14:50 – Close up of Bill Belichick. Darth Hoodie would look a lot more intimidating if his throwback beanie didn’t have that yarn doily poking out the top. Cats everywhere are clawing at their TV screens. Bill, it’s called “Under Armour.”
11:45 – Demetrius Williams drops a poor man’s hail mary from Flacco. Shawn Springs on the coverage. Simms insists that Williams beat Springs to the play even as the slow-mo replay shows Springs swiping at the ball from behind Williams’ shoulder. Maybe Simms was talking about a different Shawn Springs.
11:21 – Edelman makes another reception. His stats so far: 4 catches, 4 comparisons to Welker. A hypothetical for you: if, say, David Branch – an undersized, overachieving, former fan favorite – was filling in for Welker today, would we get a bunch of Welker/Branch comparisons?
9:49 –Frank Walker lays out Ben Watson with a crunching cross-blow reminiscent of Barrow-Vanover… You’re right. Not similar at all. But admit it, you just added a new vid to your YouTube Top 10. Landry picks off the pass. That’s three for Tom Terrific, and officially the start of the As-Soon-As-This-Game-Is-Out-Of-Reach-I’m-Shutting-This-Log-Down Countdown.
4:59 – Criminally underrated D-tackle Kevin Gregg chases Kevin Faulk out of bounds after a 5-yard up and out. Gregg is listed as a nose guard. He is not a nose guard; he is a defensive tackle. Vince Wilfork is a nose guard. The difference is size: Gregg looks like he’s on the Subway diet. Wilfork looks like he just swallowed Jared.
2:05 – New England goes no-huddle from the 1. Edelman touchdown. Shot of Welker is prematurely cut short when Wes, honest to goodness, opts for chugging the rest of his beer over more uncomfortable white-man high-fives with Craft. 27-14, Ravens. Countdown officially paused.
14:36 – Close up of Cam Cameron who’s decked in a jet-black ski jacket, sporting Pacino-as-Scarface shades and a sleek fitted hat. If Cameron was Belichick, I’d pee myself. Too bad both coaches have a “scary” impediment. Bill needs a change of wardrobe. Cam needs a name other than “Cam.”
12:05 – Harbaugh’s challenging the spot of the ball after the Pats flush Flacco out of the pocket, and Joltin’ Joe reaches for a first down. This looks like a close one. Over/under on the number of times Phil and Jim say “indisputable”? I say 2.
12:05 – Officials decide to arbitrarily spot the ball at the 6, and then unleash the chain gang. First down, Ravens. Fans are rightfully livid. The refs could have saved us 5 minutes by just stating what they were thinking during the challenge: “We really can’t tell if the ball should be on the 6, the 6 and a foot, or the 6 and two feet. Why does the NFL insist on measuring in yards? I’d like to see Phil Simms make this call from 20 feet away from the play. Phil can act like a replay guru all he wants, but what he doesn’t realize is that overhead cameras really mess with depth perception.”
11:23 – CBS’s crack camera crew catches Brady alone on the bench, head-down with nothing but empty steel on each side. Great hair, Tom.
10:32- Willis walks in from the 3. Is 33-14 a scenario on the Two-Point Conversion Chart? Apparently. Ravens go for two, feeding their goal-line horse again. We have another challenge, as if it matters. Ravens, 33 or 35, New England 14.
7:19 – Cameras catch Kelley Washington giving Pats fans the half throat-slash. Mics catch Kelley Washington yelling, “It’s over. It’s over.” Good enough for me. It’s been real, folks. Enjoy this week’s most popular betting line:
Odds Shayne Graham keeps his job/Odds Harry Reid keeps his job – 2:1