Happy Scribe

Tonight on the Bill Simmons podcast, we're going to be talking to these two guys from the Dan Levitas show about Miamis predicament in the 2020 finals, along with what is it like to be a Jets fan in 2020? We're also going to talk to Mallory Reuben and Norm Pinciotti about the football season. And I'm going to do million dollar picks and try to rebound from a disastrous week three. That is all coming up. And now our friends from Pearl Jam.


I should have called this guy last year and I didn't have the balls at his place in Boston. I was nervous about it. I thought Miami was really good. Name ended up winning. I went into hiding. And now now I've come out of hiding. But I bet on your team, Stu Guts. I had them in six, 10 to one odds and I was feeling really good when they're up twenty three to 10 in game one and then all hell broke loose.


And now Goran Dragic is basically limping around. It has a torn whatever the hell that thing's called. Base is doubtful for the game to be almost like a superhero in the Celtics series. Dragic destroyed us now now I'm just in a spiral I'm so bummed out.


Well what's it like in Miami today. How were the How's the attic doing during the drama Hondo who you hear from Johnson.


Why do I always go Butch Hobson with you.


I don't know. I don't know. And the ref from the too many of the men in the game.


Yeah I was I was up there in the attic just moving stuff around, thinking about that Miami series. But did you did it before last night. Did you talk yourself into the Heat actually went in this finals? Because I did.


I didn't talk myself.


Here's the interesting thing. I think about the bubble, because when you remove it, does it feel like the normal NBA playoffs? For obvious reasons, I think much of the NBA playoffs is about going on the road in big spots and having those big games with thirty thousand fans screaming at you while you're doing it. Tyler Harro hasn't done that yet. He's had big games in the bubble on a neutral court. These guys play games, walk back to their hotel, walk back to the complex, and they play in the same court with different logos.


And so you're not really getting the true NBA playoff experience. And therefore, I thought headed into the series, The Heat had a chance because of the neutral court. You take a travel and fans out of it. I still feel like they have a chance. But those injuries are definitely concerning. I will tell you a twenty three to ten. I was thinking a four game sweep. We're going to have a parade down here in Miami, I got to be honest with you.


And so are you, Simmons. Like you work out your money already, I bet, right?


Well, I like the way the ball is moving. They were getting open shots. The Lakers looked a little discombobulated and then it all fell apart. If I had picked two guys going into this series that were the indispensable heat players, I actually would have picked Dragic and Bam over Butler and anyone else on the roster because Dragic so many mismatch possibilities with him in that Lakers team. Now they're susceptible to those crafty point guards who can break their defense stuff and then bam.


He's really the only, the only line of defense against aid. Even when he got those two fouls before he got hurt. Right. That's when it all fell apart. As soon as he left the game it was all of a sudden Solomon Hill's out there and it's like, what's happening?


Yeah, because. Right, the Sally Hill, I mean, Solomon Hill, they're so depleted right now. Solomon Hell am I going to start? I mean, seriously, we've been making fun of those minutes. It's kind of like when spo back when the Big Three were down here, just decided to be a good idea to start Dexter Pittman one game if you're. Oh my God. Yeah, I do remember that. Yeah. Against the Pacers.


Bam's been great. What you're seeing I think with, with this series and early on it's only a game. But Bamba says he's going to play even though he's listed as doubtful. Goran probably not going to play. Jimmy Butler going to be fine. I think what you're seeing with Anthony Davis is what Bam's going to look like five or six years from now. I think they have similar skill sets, similar body types. But Anthony Davis is just more mature.


But I'm not certain. Anthony Davis, when you team up with LeBron, I mean, we have you bills.


They're a comparison point for him in terms of being six eleven, being able to hit the three, take guys off the dribble, maybe a genius. I don't know, but I'm not.


Sir Anthony Davis right now is not the best player in the game. Well, it's I would say in less than an hour. So as podcast, we really haven't seen this since 2001 when Shaq was still in his peak and Kobe was really turning into the young superstar Kobe in a lot of different ways where it was just like night tonight, quarter to quarter.


One of the two guys is just eviscerating the other team. And you're right, like when he's hitting threes and stuff, how do you see that? It seems it just seems unfair. It's I know you can't have that. So many other things defensively. I thought he was dominant yesterday. And, you know, I ask yourself this question. I'm going to ask you what this his final stat line have to look like in the finals for him to win the MVP.


When you think about all the LeBron, the media cronies, the LeBron narrative, how badly his generation wants LeBron to be the goat, all that stuff like that, do you think Davis has to go forty and fifteen in the finals? Like, does he have to average 40 points a game? What would be the tipping point for him? Shoot seventy percent from the field.


It seems really silly. What was the stat line from last night? Let's just start there first. Because I love this conversation, I am going to be like thirty, thirty four and fifteen, something like that. Love to check it right now. Thirty five minutes.


Thirty four and fifteen is not going to get him the MVP.


He's got to Davis. Yes. Step it up. I mean, what a lousy game. Yeah. He had thirty four points, nine rebounds and five assists. They're not good enough. Not good enough. Sure. Bill, I'm with you though.


I think you have to be north of 40 points per game, right. Somewhere around fifteen rebounds a game somewhere in the neighborhood of four or five assists the game with a couple of steals and a couple of blocks and a game without him.


And even then, he may not win it. I mean. And a game winner. Yeah. So funny. Last night, Mark Jackson, who, you know, he loves LeBron. He's a huge fan. And at some point he started talking about, you know, LeBron doesn't get enough credit for how much better he's made Anthony Davis or whatever he said. There's this pause if anybody's like. He didn't make it that he Davis better, Anthony Davis is already really good.


His situation has changed, which is how I feel. I think it makes you better to play with somebody else is awesome. But it's not like Davis is tapping into this new form of his talents, like the guy was always one of the most prodigiously talented players of this decade.


He was a top 10 guy before he got to the Lakers. And now all you've done is simply combine them with the top three guy in the NBA, maybe the top three guy we've ever seen. Yeah, in the NBA. So it's but Jeff Van Gundy is right. Like, that's funny.


Like I would say, if anything, Anthony Davis, because you look at the Lakers last year, they were very good without Anthony Davis and LeBron was still playing at a pretty high level. I would say, if anything, Anthony Davis has helped LeBron more than LeBron is going to help them. He's prolong LeBron career and no question that's it.


And he's taken a ton of pressure off of him. He's allowed it to be more of a playmaker. He said last night he thought LeBron passing was the best part of his game, which, you know, is a good argument. I'm not positive. I agree. But that's how good his passing is that somebody would say that. Well, what do you think is the best part of his game? How smart is it? It's funny because he's also one of the five greatest athletes that's probably ever played basketball.


But I think it's his brain. And even like I remember writing this when he left Miami in 2014 and tried to spin it as this. So I'm coming home, Cleveland. It was like, no way. He knows that that Miami roster is done and that he can't win titles with where they are. He knows Wade's at a different point. It's just him and Bosh. And they don't have the salary that other people and they have no chance if he knew that.


Yeah, I've always said he's he's very calculated.


And him and his I guess his team, the guys that he put around him, Maverick and all those guys, Rich Paul, I think they've had his entire career kind of laid out for him like they like every step of the way.


He knew Miami for years. Bring it full circle, go back to Cleveland, win them a title, and then I'm going out to L.A. I'm convinced he knew all of this before he even came down to Miami.


You know, so I think if Miami was awesome. And was the best basketball situation, I think he would have stayed for as long as that was the case, so do yeah. If you rip through the Spurs in 12, 14, let's say like that, come back in 13, you ruin them. They're not they're never the same. And then you run over whoever and 12, 13. I just think he does one year contracts until it ends.


How much bitterness is there in Miami at this point for LeBron six years later?


Here's where the bitterness comes from because of what you and I are discussing and you know how calculated he is, how well thought out he is and how smart he is. The bitterness comes from this. First off, there is appreciation because we got four years of great teams in sports history and we got four years of one of the greatest athletes that we've ever seen in any sport. And I am I am super grateful for that. But you do have a guy and it's why he was criticized for doing it, who got on the stage before he played a single game and promised them eight years and only gave him four.


And so Heat fans do not forget that he said he was going to deliver a title delivered to delivered an embarrassing loss to the Mavericks, the first year where he can post up JJ Barea.


And then here's where it really gets problematic in terms of how he fans feel about LeBron James. If you think it was calculated, if you think it was planned out, that after four years of Miami, he'd go back to Cleveland and try to win that city, a title which he did, which really felt like winning two titles, right. For LeBron James. If you believe that's the case, you know, if they beat the Spurs bill in that fourth season, LeBron can't leave Miami after winning a third consecutive title.


And I think what fans start doing and this is the problem with LeBron, because I know Celtics fans with the Eastern Conference finals game, LeBron could give you a great stat line where it appears like he's giving max effort, but you're left scratching your head. Is he really giving max effort? Because if they win that series, LeBron has to come back and they they they try to win a fourth title. Yeah. The fact that he had a cramp issue, you know, he had quod issues.


The guy's a machine, he's a robot, he's never injured. And then all of a sudden he's injured and complaining about the air conditioning in the San Antonio arena. And then he doesn't come back and goes back to Cleveland. That's where people are a little skeptical. They scratch their head and they don't believe LeBron James, quite frankly. You know, well, maybe he that series. You know, you're not saying that's rational, though, because I do not think he I think he went all out in that series.


I think the Spurs were just way better than them. So you're saying.


So I'm saying I'm saying he can't leave if they win that series. He could not go back to Cleveland if he wins that series. So, yes, Miami fans are wondering, I think LeBron has this magic ability where he can put up stat lines that look like historically, when we look at all out, people were claiming that guy was a drawing. He put up thirty nine and nine. Right. But I think LeBron is so good where he could do that and still take and you feel like his heart's not totally in it.


Yeah, I could see it if he if it was your favorite team and you lost in your try and then he leaves and you're just going to the angriest places.


I think the one thing that I hate myself for thinking like this, by the way, that's why I you though, right? I no, no.


What I'm doing is these are my thoughts and I'm putting them off on them so they might have get like under their umbrella.


Yeah. Other people maybe like he doesn't speak for us. All right. In 2011. You know, it's funny because that was nine years ago. And I actually think it's it's been understated how bad he was in that series. And I was looking back at stuff I wrote from that year and in game four, the famous game, when he completely is an all time MBA. And there were real stats to back it up, that his usage rate in that game was by far the lowest of any playoff game he ever played and of his of his career of like the you know, the previous eight years or something.


There was actual advanced metrics to support how little involved he was. That game which backed up being there in person, were you just going, oh, my God, he's he's running from this and. Right. You know, you think like the next year he flipped it. And since that moment, twenty, twelve all the way through, I think he's brought it every year. I really think fourteen. I can't hang that on him because I just think your team wasn't good enough, you know, in the Spurs.


Game three, game four, game five. I remember going on TV before game five and the series is over like open up twenty points. The last two games, they weren't even close. I don't I don't think Miami has enough to beat him. And I think he saw the writing on the wall and I think he saw in Cleveland too. I think he's so smart as a basketball mind that he just assesses it like he's fucking Schwarzenegger in the Terminator and he's just looking at it with his x ray vision.


And he just sees, like the weakness. Then he's like, I'm out. He did it last year, the Lakers. He did.


But those young dudes for twenty games, he's like, I'm out. Right. Ball not happening. Not only am I out, but get them all the fuck out of here. Yeah, yeah. I'm injured. Trade them.


I go I go get me after the game. But let's be honest, right?


Because the year before they should have lost to the Spurs. So that Spurs deem it even. Yes, it evened out. So they should have lost the Spurs that third season. They were together. But that game you're talking about, it was an Eastern conference final game. Right. Which was before he left and came to Miami. It was Cavs Boston. Was that a that in Eastern Conference final. Get the one we're talking 2010. Yeah. Game five, game six seed.


Well, game five, he he he disappeared. Right. But is that game right? No, the usage rate game was game for Dallas. Top level of the game for Dallas. They get eight points. Right. And you know, it's the game for Dallas actually made the last two games of the Cleveland Boston series make more sense. Right, because it's something it's his brain was trying to process whatever the other team was doing and just it kind of like short circuited both years.


And that was the last time that happened after that, like he could figure out anything on a basketball court.


But I've got to figure out how to beat the Warriors basically by himself.


So, well, even in twenty eighteen, when they lost, when they got swept to J.R. Smith, Bohner Game committed a bone LeBron LeBron had figured out how to really attack that worst team that were his team was, you know, an iconic team.


And he was going at on one. On one. Yeah. I'm excited for the fight really. Because this fight, this finals is probably done if Dragic is out and Bam is hurt. So the finals MVP argument is like really the only job we have left.


I know and it's Anthony. I'm telling you, it's going to have to be now I'm thinking about it's going to have to be north of 50 points a game and there's no scenario in which they're winning a title. LeBron is not getting finals MVP unless Anthony Davis does something that we've never seen before. I am. I am interested. How do you feel about what I said? Because you love basketball. You love the player. You love the chase for a title.


Yeah, I just feel like playoff basketball to you with no fans, no travel, no having to go on the road and hit big shots. And like rookies don't play as well on the road. Role players don't play as well on the road historically in the NBA playoffs. Does this feel anything close to you in terms of NBA playoff basketball? It does, really. I'm I'm actually OK with it. I just think every year in the playoffs, there's different variables.


Right. In 2012, the first title, LeBron won in Miami, that was the shortened season and everything was condensed. And, you know, Derrick Rose blew out his knee in round one. And it's like, could you tie that to the fact that he had played all those games before then? Like, yeah, maybe. And that was kind of a war of attrition in its own way. OKC ends up making the finals that year basically because they have young legs, you know, Miami because they had the best team.


So I think when you go backwards and you start looking at different postseason, sometimes they just have weird like nineteen ninety nine was the most famous one, the fifty game season and the Spurs end up winning.


So the variables, even though we lost home court, stuff like that.


There's other variables, right, like being in the bubble, it ruined the Clippers, you know, they weren't tight as a team, but as soon as when they had that, the vote about whether to boycott the rest of the playoffs and all that stuff, they were one of the teams that voted we want to get out of here, which I thought was interesting. But, you know, they couldn't handle it. Let me try it this way.


If if we had playoffs the traditional way with fans, travel, all that stuff, the Heat are up to low coming back to Miami like they went to games in Milwaukee.


Well, evidence would say no, because who is the last under four seed to even make the finals? Wasn't it like the ninety nine Knicks?


I think the other night I think we had a 20 year run of you had to be a top four seed to make the finals even higher than that. Yeah I think the ninety nine next spring.


And the flip side though I will say this about Miami, that the the Iguodala Crowder trade combined with Hiro just getting better is the year long like really did transform them like they were real reasons, they were better than their record heading in the playoffs, which I think we're a little unusual. Right.


Yeah. Well no doubt what's really cool about this, this particular team is that Riley and listen, we have fun, me and you, we have fun.


We take shots back and forth. But I know you respect the hell out of Riley because you're Bill Simmons. You wrote the book of basketball like, you know, it's one of my favorites. Yeah. Riley and. Yeah, and he should be he's great.


I'm not certain that he's not better as a as an executive than he was as a head coach, which is which is pretty amazing when you consider how good of a head coach he was. But I think the beauty, the beauty of this team is we had people, Bill, I remember having this discussion with you and I agree with you. If Jimmy Butler is your best player, you're not going anywhere. You butler is there. Now, if Jimmy Butler is your third best player, then you're really on to something.


But he did this, I think see, I think Bam's their best player. And that's the misnomer with this Miami team.


But well, I think that's the cool thing about this team, is that Pat rebuilt this this quickly and he did it primarily through the draft with them and with Tyler Herro with two draft picks. And now you have to think this would be an attractive spot for someone like Giannis or other free agents, because you have your Jimmy Butler is a number two, you have a young core and Bam and Tyler hero and you have this guy, Pat Riley, who's overseeing all that with a great coach and ultra.


And so I think Riley is really positioned this team not just for the now it's amazing they're in the finals, but for the next five or ten years, they might have Riley in the heat, might have another run up, which I think is pretty amazing considering how quickly that that Big Three fell apart, you know, and they had some bad luck.


The Bosh thing was bad luck. He would still be on the team and would be probably an eighteen and eight kind of guy.


I wrote when Durant was a free agent in 2016, I wrote a whole piece about Riley, basically just what a huge advantage it is to have the combo of no state tax, an iconic NBA city, the top three or four city that any NBA superstar would want to live in, and then the culture of some real titles and real success on top of the Riley thing. And that meeting you have with Riley when he puts the rings on the table in front of you and all that shit.


And the moment Jimmy Butler signed with them, I was like, of course, is probably they were probably jerking off each other over the ring.


It's like, oh, great. Oh, yeah. He culture, it's like, oh, Jimmy Butler ever it he was. I know. Like I just want to be with dudes who care about winning. I you know, he couldn't even stand Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons.


They don't run that whole dynamic.


You know Riley and Spoelstra never got to the pitch for he never Riley never got to the dumping of the rings on the table. He never did that with Butler because they're sick of it already.


You don't need that Jimmy said. I'm in like after the appetizers Jimmy said I'm in like that, I'm good.


So. Well, I think it's really I always respect I felt this way about Indiana four years ago, and it's happened a couple of times where a team has become a real contender without a top five lottery pick. It's the hardest thing to do in sports, you know, and basically Adibi down here or 13 and 14, Butler is a free agent. They made an aggressive trade for Dragic. They gave up to one protected first. I love the trade.


A lot of people didn't. They thought it was too risky to give up those unprotected packs. And, you know, over and over again they've they've made smart moves. The Winslow trade was smart that Garza was hurt, so he was kind of worth more than on paper than it actually was to have him. But I really respect, you know, I think the heat culture thing. Everybody's having a lot of fun making fun of that lately. I always thought of it more like a DNA thing.


Like I just I said on my pot a few weeks ago because I was picking them every round in the bubble. I picked them to make the finals. I you picked them.


You picked on the beat the Celtics. I picked them before the before the playoffs. Start the finals. Yeah. Good job. Up every round. I just stay. And that was what was missing last night, because they're a team that was always winning 50 50 balls. They were just fucking tough and they didn't look tough last night. They looked weak and they weren't winning the 50 50 balls. I don't know if it was deer in the headlights or what was going on.


They looked beat. They looked like, hey, maybe they were like it look like to me it looked like bam! Saying to himself, Hey, that's me. And five or six, that's a better version of me and Anthony Davis. And Jimmy Butler's like, hey, that's a better version of me. James, we cannot beat this team. Right.


But yeah, that's why I mean, that's why LeBron wanted so badly to set this up so they can my theory for why I wanted to take them was I didn't think they were going to respect LeBron. And I mean that in a positive way. I think LeBron is such an icon at this point. And you watch these playoff teams, they're so deferential to him. Yes, Denver was like they weren't pressuring him. They weren't shit talking to him.


They weren't hard fouling him. It's like an honor to play against him. It's like this is the fucking Western finals. Step it up. And I felt like Miami was going to do that even last night.


There was a moment, Jae Crowder, he had two things when he tried to, like, basically ruin his shoulder, Dwyane Wade style.


I say he got a little bit harder. Yeah, just a little bit.


Back to the right, Jay, you that other thing where he he hard fouled him and then he just kept staring at him in the camera, caught him and he was just like doing like the crazy. Who is the guy in Godfather two who stares down Frankie FiveFingers. Oh God Bill, I'm not.


His brother comes in from Italy and he's just like stink eye. Yeah, yeah. I don't remember the name.


So Jae Crowder did like that, that stare. And LeBron is kind of like, dude, come on. Right. This series is a rapper. A.R.T. Straka really stick out before people are going to laugh at the Dragic stuff.


But he was playing the best basketball of his career before he got injured.


And so it's interesting because I so I thought the heat would have a good shot in this bubble because I know how prepared they would be. I don't know how serious they would take this thing because that's the way Spoelstra and Riley are. And then I felt like the Lakers were the clear favorites, not just because of the talent, but because of how much LeBron is battling father time right now. So we know this championship is so important to him. And so I knew he would take it.


You know, he'd be more serious about this than anyone else would be it.


So here we you could certainly see that in the Denver game five, where he had he was carrying himself in a way that, yeah, you could see it. He was like he could smell it. Yeah.


And he said at the end it was winning time and he was guarding Jamal Murray. He said, yeah, it's because it was winning. Right.


I wouldn't write off this Miami team is because it sounds last night I was like, it's going to be a sweep. I just think they're tough and they're going to ugly it up. They'll play zone. They'll do a couple of hard fouls. They're going to beat the shit out of Davis. They'll play Kelly Olynyk and Meyers, Leonard Moore and just try to pound Davis hard foul as much as they can. The hard foul, they're going to use all their fouls.


They're going to make it really physical and ugly and try to start some shit because that they're not rolling over.


And the frustrating thing for me, it's like you mentioned Dragic before the. People have no idea how good that dude is, that it destroyed Boston, especially in the first two games of the series, he made a couple contested threes that were like back breakers, you know, where it's like play perfect defense. And then he's like, all right, I'll just hit this twenty five foot fall away over your center. You just like what the fuck we could have done any better.


And I, I, I he's obviously so important but I don't see Miami rolling over. I don't think they can win the series without him, but I don't think they'll roll over either.


What, what if I. Well there's two funny things here. So first of all, if I didn't, I would say you have to start Udonis Haslem. He's got six fouls. He does not give a shit about me.


I just let him do his best to deliver those six fouls and somehow take out Anthony Davis or LeBron I see on the roster.


Yeah, of course he is the last guy on the bench. Oh, that's a brilliant idea. You do that right?


Just let Udonis go in there and muck it up right at the start of one game at just six hard fucking fouls on LeBron James.


He just comes out for the jump ball, just shoves Davis. Yeah, Davis goes up and Haslem just punches them. Right. His stomach. Right. Gets kicked out. Yeah. So there's that.


But if I tell you that Dragic does not return for this series because I don't think that he will. Bill, do you still feel like the heat have a chance. Because I don't not know. I actually don't, I don't. I think the whole case for them was the totality of the team versus the two guys who are the best guys in the series. And that's a Jenga stack. And you put a block in, the stack crumbles. I just felt like Bam!


Butler Dragic Those are three key guys and then you're hoping one of Hero Robinson every game getting hot which is what happened against the Celtics series when you get the random Iguodala quarter like he had in Game six to Jae Crowder Jae Crowder quarter. Yeah I actually think Olynyk can be a guy like that in the series because he has done it in playoff games where he'll have like the random fifteen point quarter, things like that. So I think they have to play him.


But yeah, he played a lot in game one. So I mean I think clearly moving forward they'll have to read their best chance.


Is Davis having an awesome game too, and then complaining afterwards that he has no chance of winning the finals MVP?


And then we played out. Yeah, this blows up the locker. Before we go, where does this jet season rank for you, one to 10 for just having your soul ripped out of your body?


It's the worst of the worst, while I'm numb to it. It's the worst bill, because not only bad, there's no one on our roster where I could say, like, wow, OK, there's the future.


It's not the quarterback. It's not the head coach. The head coach is about to get fired. Yeah.


And by the way, for everyone listening to this and I know there's millions of people listening to each episode, I dare you to watch the Broncos.


The Jets tonight. They go right ahead. I dare. And by the way, we played a funny game on our show the other day. Bill named the best player on the field tonight. Go ahead. Good luck.


Who is it? Is it Brad Chubb? That's what Mike Ryan said.


In the absence of Von Miller, Le'Veon Bell, Bradley Chubb. What a sad state of affairs say. You had like a seven year old Jets fan as your son. Yeah. And he's like, I need a jersey. What jersey are you buying? This poor, tortured several Jets fan. Like before you set out Jamal Adams. He's cool. He'll be on the team a while. Great. All pro safety. Yeah. But now it's like that is a great question.


It has to be from the current roster. I can't go over the roster. I can't get them. I can't get them a guest in New Jersey. I can't do that.


I think that's the answer. I think you have to go throw back. I think Braxton Berrios, maybe it's a Braxton Berrios because he's little and the kid's a little baby. That's the move. I don't know.


I mean, he's Chris Hogan. Oh, my God. Well, you know how bad the Pats receivers have been the last couple of years. Like we cut Chris Hogan, Braxton Berrios. Could it get off the practice squad? And now those guys are starting for the Jets. It's really crazy.


By the way, congratulations on losing the greatest quarterback of all time and still having the best quarterback in the division. It's unbelievable. Fuck you.


It's been so wonderful. Plus, like, Brady's doing a lot of the stuff he did last year. Yes. And he looks good, though, Bill. Nobody. He really he kind of secretly doesn't, though, right, Cazale? I mean, you know, that he's he's still missing throws like he's playing like a forty three year old guy. I think Brees is playing like an old guy too. It happens and you get old. You're right on in position.


No you're right.


I mean listen, some people would argue Josh Allen's the best quarterback in the AFC East. I would tell you no. I'd rather that's a settled down right. For the next five years.


Listen, for the Jets, I'm numb to it. This is this is the way it is. I am forty five years old. I've never seen him play the Super Bowl. I've seen him play in a couple of AFC championship games, too, with Mark Sanchez, one, I believe with Keyshawn and Vinny Testaverde. Yeah, ten.


Nothing at half against the I was going to say way closer game than I think people remember. Yeah. It was they had a 10 point lead at half and so I thought we were going to the Super Bowl. This has been this is a very frustrating season. Couple of things. I liked Adam Gaist when they hired him, so I thought that was a good hire.


And I've waited my entire life to be friends with the head coach of the Jets. Yeah. Legitimate friends with Adam Gase. So I am upset that gas is going to get fired here. I am going to go from being good friends with the Jets head coach to being good friends with the Jags, the next Jags offensive coordinator. Right. Tough, tough, tough, tough one. But I was telling Laboratoire the other day, and I'll tell you the same thing.


This has been the worst season I am nearing a point, Bill, where I have grown exhausted and like I don't even want to watch the games anymore and I blame one person and that one person is is Joe. What do you remember, Joe?


Well, what are the original nose pickers? Yes. Yes, the coach in the early 80s. Oh, yeah.


Richard. God, yes. Yeah.


Dan was cracking up when when I was talking about this. But the reason I blame Walton is because as a kid. All right, you have a choice in New York. You could be a Jets fan. You could be a Giants fan. You could be. And I understand you could be a Rangers fan. You could be where unfortunately, we're all saddled with the Knicks. OK, yeah. Let's be a Mets fan. You could be a Yankees fan.


So you have choices. The Jets under Coach Walton were just good enough. OK, playing at Shea Stadium. They were just good enough with the sack exchange with Richard Todd, the long flowing hair coming out of the helmet. And Wesley Walker, who was our best wide receiver. Yeah, they were just good enough and just entertaining enough where I chose to be a jet fan as opposed to being a giant fan. And so I blame Walton for that because he was just good enough as the head coach to make the Jets relevant enough for me as a kid to be a fan of the New York Jets.


So, yeah, that's a tough because the season the eighty two head coach of the New York Jets, for one, and you didn't know about that.


If it's like one year later, maybe I'm in on that guy Parcells.


I was just a couple of years away from Belichick, LTI Harry Carson. Phil said, Oh, man, Joe, it's tough. It's a tough story. All right. Say hi to Leveton in the crew for me.


I will say hi to all the demons in the attic for me. I will say having a look at the culture, you guys start talk about the third culture, like the how would you define that culture, celebrity culture, hard working lunchpail.


Let's tell people built around a host. It does watch sports. It's a lunchpail culture.


All right.


Thanks for coming out to the guys any time home at home. Yeah, I think I forget these bills. I know. I know you do.


All right.


You're a great man and good luck. Good luck with that. He took advantage. Becomes a thank you. All right. I'll see you later. All right.


See you, buddy. Hey, you've probably heard about Fanjul sports books, world class sports betting out by now. Remember, Fandor makes it easier to find and place your bets. They've got some of the best ads you'll find anywhere. Fandor Sportsbook throwing a little gasoline on the fire with a ten dollar risk free same game parlay for our customers. It's the only place of the same game power. They can buy multiple bets from one matchup or team into a single parlay.


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And if you're need a fan of sports, but be sure to sign up with promo code B.S. so they know I sent you that as promo code B.S. Disclaimer twenty one plus and present in Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, West Virginia, Indiana, Colorado, Iowa. See full terms at Sportsbook that Fandor Dotcom Gantley problem call 100 gambler in West Virginia. One in hundred gamble Dannette Indiana. One hundred and with it Colorado. One in hundred five to forty seven hundred.


Iowa is eight hundred bets off. All right, time for a million dollar pics, Joe House is here, haven't had a lot of house on the on the Thursday night NFL podcast because he's been busy. Host Fareway Roland for us, our excellent golf podcast with Nathan Hubbard. And then on Fridays, honoring the NFL, a new show that we have this year with Warren Sharp, expert analytics expert, knows a lot of stuff. And Housen him are doing a little gambling preview of the weekend on that if you missed it.


So, you know, it's hard to book you for this stuff, but I needed you. I'm getting my ass kicked this week. Well, I appreciate the invite. I always say yes and yeah, I'm having a great time with brother Warren is literally he is literally sharp and I am literally an average Joe. Yeah, I think it's a pretty good match up. I'm learning a lot each week. One thing that I have learned that doesn't have anything to do with Warren Sharpe is the last time I was on this podcast, I was not sober.


And the Denver the Denver basketball team, God bless the Denver Nuggets. They're they're good. Yokich is good. Jamal Murray, very good. The fans of the Denver Nuggets. They have an interesting sense of humor. That's where I put it. Oh, you felt like you disparaged the Nuggets and they attacked you. I mean, I was drunk and I did I did say the number of games I thought that they were going to win resembled the shape of my my saggy oval shape balls.


You know, the zeroscape. They didn't like that. They didn't like that, which is understandable. Guess to Denver. Apologies to all the fans that the Nuggets I'm a fan of the Nuggets now. I honestly was outraged by the way that Lakers series went.


We love them. So on Sunday. I thought I was going to sweep million dollar pics and instead I lost Falcons minus three disastrous Big Technik comeback just pulled out. I won the Bengals against the Eagles. Cowboys plus five against the Seahawks somehow didn't cover that. It took two missed extra points. It took Seattle getting a two point and it took Seattle somehow getting a touchdown at the tail end of the game instead of the game winning field goal, which never happens.


And then at Rams plus two kids the bills. That was cruel. That really actually hurt my feelings. I was upset with that one as well. And then I had a tease with the cards in Tampa and the cards just let me down. That was the only one. I actually was like I had to look in the mirror. And that one, I think I overrated the cards a little bit. So had all that stuff happen then? Did bet on Miami ten to one odds to win and six, which you join me and we like that as a long shot bet and within forty minutes Dragic just returned something of his foot.


Bam sir and that ship sailed and then to cap it all off picked the White Sox as my baseball playoff team put a little on them so I could have a playoff team and they completely choked. I don't know how they lost to Oakland. So House. I'm reeling. I really needed you right now.


We're here. Here we are. We're going to right the ship right now. There are a bunch of opportunities on this week for Slate. So I'm interested to hear what you have cooked up, my brother. Well, I'm going to give you the stay with us first.


Go ahead. Dolphins plus six and a half home. In steamy Florida against Seattle, who everybody loves. Meanwhile, Seattle, no pass rush secondary has been pretty bad. They they feel beatable on the right week. I initially was going to Seattle and the more I thought about it, I became scared of them. And then I realized as I was scared of them, like, oh, maybe the dolphins as a possible, as you're as you're straight up upset of the week.




Or money line and money. Put them in a long shot parlay. But then I remembered Russell Wilson's on the Seahawks. I'm staying away from that one. Browns plus four and a half against the Cowboys. So you watch the Browns played the Washington almost professional football team last week, and there is a world in which if Haskins doesn't defecate all over himself, his teammates, the field gamblers, whatever, that they actually might have been in that game because their defense was pretty good.


They I like Gibson. I like MacLaurin. They have some pieces, but he was so bad that I almost don't know how to judge the Browns from that. There's a world in which the Browns might actually be OK with that running game. And, you know, their offensive line is better there, but they have a real coach this year. So I looked at them a little bit with the Cowboys plus four and a half, but backed off because they're the Browns.


Well, and the interesting thing to me is that you backed off. The reason to me to back off that game is not the Browns, but instead the Cowboys. What the cowboys are very untrustworthy.


What, all over the map. Yeah. The betting on them or against them. Yeah. They they have so much capacity to do so many great things. And we really thought they they were going to come out and go gangbusters. Thirteen and three. Twelve before I thought that was possible. Not now. I also looked at the Texans minus three and a half for a little bit o three season on the line, playing the Vikings CERASO on three season against season on the line.


The advanced metrics for the Vikings are horrific. The team isn't very good. It just came down to, I think especially during the covid season, two shit teams playing each other is probably a stay away, and especially if you're laying points. We saw that last week with Jacksonville, Miami. It's like, oh, cool, I'll lay the points with Jacksonville. And it's like, why did I do that? Both of these teams stink. I don't know what I'm getting.


So I think I'm going to stay away from the old three loser leaves town so you won't have me make any argument to the contrary.


OK, so here's what I'm looking at.


I really like the books, I like the books, I think I think they as a TS team. First of all, their defense is really good. Number two, DVOA, I've been impressed with them the last couple of weeks. They have some playmakers to play in the Chargers. I don't know if I don't know if they pull the needle out of Tyrod punctured lung yet or I don't know. He's probably not playing yet herbut he's OK. Whatever.


They've had some injuries, the Chargers. And it's becoming increasingly clear that they, the chiefs rope a dope to us. And we too, with that, that Chargers game where they just basically they did the Milton Berle pulled that just enough dick to win. I like the bucks in that game. I haven't loved how Brady looks. I know God wins out. But I mean, to me, that's the team to beat in the NFC South. Regardless of how Shakey's Brady's playing, they're favored by seven at home over the Chargers.


So I need the second team. I want to tease that. Yeah, the second team and. Look, I'm down a million dollar pics right now, I'm down seven hundred fifty seven thousand dollars, I need wins. The best team to teach them with is the Kansas City Chiefs. Yeah. So unfortunately, playing my favorite team, the New England Patriots, I have to divest my heart. I'm going to root for the Pats. If I if if the Pats blow this bet for me, great.


Then the Pats won. But I just think the Chiefs are at a different class than anybody. It's going to be a big game because Bell checks on the sidelines. They're not going to let down from the Ravens game. They unleashed a receivers going down field last week. I think their defense looks pretty good. You know, it was it was good in the playoffs last year when they needed to be. And it seems even a little bit friskier this year.


And this Pats team is still trying to figure out who they are on offense. There's practice squad dudes running reverses and undrafted, five foot six free agents getting four carries on a drive. I think if they play this game in late November, I'd feel better about the Pats. I still feel like they're figuring out who they are a little bit. And now there's some game tape on cam. I'd be surprised if they beat the Chiefs. So that's going to be my first one.


Bucs Chiefs tees, your thoughts.


The only thing about it that. Makes me pause in the short week for the Chiefs. Yeah, right, and you coming off a huge win and you essentially give Belichick an extra day of preparation. I mean, I'm sure the Chiefs had a secondary group of people planning for this Patriots game. But just it feels like, you know, getting the guys down from you mentioned the emotional high winds, that adrenaline run off for for the chiefs. Is it middle of the day Tuesday?


They wake up, they're happy. They're satisfied when wind is their focus for the Patriots really kick in. Is it Wednesday the first part of Wednesday? So that's the reason why I would be worried, because you know that that Belichick is going to have his team prepared. I agree with you that that New England is looking for an identity on offense.


And I was a little worried. They were my favorite play last week against the Raiders. And it looks like Cam is still trying to build some chemistry. We got three touchdowns out of Rex Burkhead last week. Yeah, I didn't I didn't expect that. So that that, you know, council's in favor of going ahead and feeling comfortable with the chiefs. But I just I don't know. I think it makes sense. But go ahead. Can I give you this one Chiefs thing?


So they had the upper hand in Baltimore now because you want the one seed this year, your laid out the case the last couple of weeks on your Friday pod with him.


It's only one by they have a huge advantage, gets arraignment's, they have two important games next three weeks, they have New England, this week they're at Buffalo in week six. If they run the slate with those three. Their schedule actually gets easier as we head into the the second half. They're in the driver's seat and they have. So that's why I don't feel like they're going to be letting down on this one because they take care of business against the Pats.


Now, you only have to worry about that Buffalo game in two weeks and you had the AFC by the balls. So I'm not going as big as I normally would on on these teases, OK? OK, I think that's unless you can give me a better team to tease them with. I looked at the Rams against the Giants to the Rams or minus 13, so you don't get a ton of value with that. One reason the fantasy sports book once and you could get you could do a six and a half points, get them under a touchdown, but then I'm still in that cheap touchdown range with the Giants, which I hate at the end that the team is favored by 13 that I love this week.


Speaking of a couple of teams we mentioned already, that's the Baltimore Ravens. They have the travel for them is getting on a bus for a 15 minute bus ride down I-95. The one thing we know without hesitation or reservation is that the Ravens beat the living crap out of bad teams. You mean I'm going to get in trouble for saying this, but limited lahmar, limited. Lamar loves playing bad teams.


Are you going to hurt Vallauris feelings? Not not just Malhi. Warren Sharpe is going to send me a I don't want to. He's also down here in the DMV and I'm worried about what's going to show up on my doorstep tomorrow. If he hears me talking this way, he's obviously a lot more diversity.


We both believe in Lamar. It's just against these great teams. He's had a couple of stink bombs. He's on three against the Chiefs. Oh, that number already moved from thirteen up to fourteen. Yeah, that's so he can't really put in there. So, yeah, I'm with you. I think they kill the the Washington professional team, but there's really no way to profit on that. So I'm not going in bucks chiefs. Next one. I've Colts minus two and a half against Chicago Colts first and DVOA right now kind of back, you know, you get one of the games was against the Jets, but even that first game of the year that they lost, I really liked.


I really liked how they looked and I didn't punt the whole game. They're kind of sneaky good. They played their pace, you know, it's slow, it's methodical, it's ugly. And one of the things I like about this game is I do think with big technik. That people have talked themselves in oh, here we go, Chicago, my question for you is, do you see the Bears being for now?


No, I don't think, like, improbable to me. I don't see it under any circumstances. I like the Colts in this situation. I think they're there. It's a silly thing to say. Kind of they're they're better than they've looked as if that makes any sense. Well, they have two receivers that now Pitman's out, and Parris Campbell got hurt a week ago. So they're a little depleted with the receivers. Hilton hasn't had a game yet.


Right? He's actually been I don't think he's as good as we've seen in the past, but I guess what I mean. I mean, we haven't really seen him have a game yet. Yeah, this is just I can't believe this is less than three, and I really do think that QAZ has some sway with people. People are afraid of going against them. So anyway, mark that one down Colditz minus two and a half. Third one is just a personal thing from watching football the last three weeks I was really impressed by the Lions last week.


OK, so the Lions week one, they blow that game to the Bears. That was stupid. They're up 17 in the fourth quarter. You never lose that. They're a little to put in the secondary. I bet against them last week and I thought their offense looks terrific. And then the rookie Akutan and in the secondary was was good and really helped the lions. What I was impressed by with them, they they were just moving the chains.


They're getting first downs and they had a huge drive in the fourth quarter against the guards where at some point around midfielder like, fuck, they're going to score. Stafford seem really confident that they can block for him. I think that's a good team. I do not like the Saints team as much. I know Michael Thomas is coming back, but, you know, we've been saying it for four weeks. Brees just doesn't throw the ball downfield anymore.


And this feels like a field goal game to me. I love getting the extra point. I think they could win it outright. It's Lions plus four. And I just like the line. I like the matchup. I think they could win it. Yeah. Lions, I agree with you. You know, they were on that streak of giving up leads in the fourth quarter and all winnable games for them, which shows, you know, how competitive they are.


And, you know, Godey's return can't be overstated. Overstated. Yeah. Oh, I was going to say underestimated. Anyway, I was the owners and hunters are in my head right now.


The thing that Stafford is really good at is vertical passing. And we've got a back there, you know, helping him stretch the field. I think that Detroit team can score on anybody. I mean, I and, you know, the Saints definitely have the capacity to let us score at the end of the game, even if they're up ten at the end. You like the the the Lions coming down and scoring. I mean, the touchdown at the end.


The extra point is very notable there. That's the other thing. And I'm glad you mentioned that they could be down ten or eleven with, you know, two minutes left and still go on down there. And we know that there's no home home field advantage. You know, if this was a packed Superdome, it would be different. So marked down, down Lions plus four and then. Last one is cards minus three over the Panthers. I think there's been an overreaction.


To the cards last week, so I like pairing these beds together because I think people cooled off on the cardinal's big time. Because they looked like crap last week. And Cuyler didn't look good last week. Yeah, but what if the Lions are actually either pretty good or just flat out good? And one of the cards just, you know, they were to feel good about themselves. It's just it was just one of those. Yeah, we sucked, I believe, in Kyla Murray.


I don't think he's going to play two shitty games in a row. I just think he had a bad game last week. I saw him the other two weeks. I thought he was great. And I think he's the kind of guy that coming off a bad game. I actually like having him. I like him in the comeback. No, no, no. Believe in me. I've got this kind of situation. So the fact that it's only three, you know, against the Panthers, that whatever, they're fine.


They had they had a nice win last week against the Chargers, but I like them in that spot.


Yeah. And, you know, the outcomes last week were were completely dictated by turnovers. Yeah. Cardinals were minus three on the wrong side of turnovers. The Panthers were plus four in turnovers last week against the Chargers and barely won. And the Chargers had one of the worst two minute drills I've ever watched in my life. Yes. Trying to come back in that game. It was like, I don't know what the hell they're doing, but they were throwing these check downs over the middle.


It's like you guys have like a minute left. What are you doing? If you do this, it's going to be twenty five seconds. And even with Arizona, this is the thing that that makes me feel comfortable with this play, even with them, you know, playing is like poorly as we expect them to. They're likely to play all season long. And all those those turnovers, they still loss on a field goal at the end of the game.


Yeah. So we got those four then. I actually like the long shot plays of the week. I haven't liked them in week twenty three, but I like them there. I have to. I was looking at first one is Philly in San Francisco. They're getting seven. And basically around plus two sixty five, depending where you look. Own three Headington for everybody's out of Philly, people have crossed them off, they're done, Wences with it.


San Francisco is really banged up, this is not the San Francisco from last year or even from, you know, earlier earlier in the playoffs last year. And the reason I looked at that was I was thinking about put the Niners in a TS and I just was like, I don't trust them at all. So I was like, well, why not go money line the other one? So I like Philly as one anchor that I'm going to give you two choices for the other team.


All right. The first one is the Atlanta Falcons. They are plus two, 80 and plus seven against the Packers on Monday night, Packers people are feeling great about Falcons, really should have two more wins that they have to move the ball. And it could go one or two ways they're going to get killed or they could, you know, show a little heart and a little spine.


The other one is the Browns. So Browns, Bengals, you feel like, well, those are basically identically bipolar teams. I don't know what I'm getting from them week to week. What if they just won here? The odds? Eagles, Falcons is plus 11, 60. Eagles, Browns, plus nine forty four, which one makes your nipples harder? I like the Browns, I think there's a more plausible case for the Browns than there is for the Falcons, you as long as Dan Quinn is the coach of the Atlanta Falcons.


There is no scenario under which you're going to convince me to put one dollar or not one dollar, not 50 cents, not a quarter, not a dime on the Atlanta Falcons. No, I do like them getting seven. They've lost 12 total points in three games. But the money line play is the dead loser as long as Dan Quinn is the coach of the Atlanta Falcons. If you bet every single game I gets, with the exception, you take out the 2016 season.


When he had Kyle Shanahan, a coach, in waiting as the offensive coordinator. If you remove that twenty sixteen season, if you bet every single game against Dan Quinn is as the coach, the Atlanta Falcons, that's a 60 percent hit rate that is collecting dollars from Las Vegas. I can't endorse an Atlanta Falcons money line play. I do like them getting seven, though. I won't say that. OK, all right. Here's what we do.


A million dollar picks. We're putting three hundred K on the following Bucs and Chiefs teams down from minus seven and minus one. Both of them have to win Colts' minus two and a half over the Bears Lions, plus four over the Saints. And the Cardinals minus three against the Panthers, some taking three road teams, but the road team betting action has been pretty favorable since there's no field advantage at all. So I'm not scared about that. And then long shot parlay the week twenty five K.


And the Eagles and the Browns, both of them have to win, plus nine for Schippert, 30 Canham but 30 can that 30 on that one.


30 on that. Come on. Yeah. So there you go. How are you feeling about that slate? I feel good about it. I love it. There's a lot of things that that I'm rooting for. There's a lot, you know, if Dallas loses again and loses to the Browns, the cowboy nation will lose its minds. I love that. I mean, there's there's a lot of things to look forward to this weekend.


Do you does Miami to the Miami Heat get swept? I haven't heard the report on Goran's foot. What's the story? He has a plant here, tear. Yeah, but can he play or not? Not he can play but they have to shoot Novocain into it. Sounds great. It's a sweep. So it is a lock. It feels like a sweep. Unless they do the thing where they have the one game where every time Davis touches anyone, it's a foul and they just try to get him out of the game.


I don't want it to be a sweep.


So I'm going to say it's a sweep because I haven't been good on this podcast with my basketball forecast.


Well, we we love Miami for three rounds.


We love why we did that was that was wonderful. And yes, it wasn't our fault that the Clippers completely left us right now. I mean, let's just be specific about it. Paul, George, George and all the all the stuff that came out after. And, yeah, Doc Rivers had to lose his job and then Philly was like, cool, we'll give you a five year contract. What could go wrong? That sounds like a great idea.


It's about poor doc has to go from that, getting Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to navigating Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. And he's going to go in there and it's going to be like yeah last year we had the clock toilet offense and that's like well that's my offense.


You only get it good. The only thing about it doesn't make any sense to base these trading Malibu for the Jersey Shore. Yeah, that's a that's a that's a downgrade, not an upgrade where so where can you live in Philly, where he would live in usually New York, like would it be nice to live in Philly?


Philly's great for these guys, but we'd be in the city like, where would you live? So what's it called? You know, the there's a whole portion of the city that these old classic 100 year old homes, gigantic homes.


So who do that and then have they don't have like a like a Jersey Shore on the water house. And he's good to go. Yeah, I think so, yeah. He's waiting on the East Coast before. When do you think he has the first convo with Joel Embiid that he needs to get in better shape. You think that's like the first next. Are you wait like two months before you drop that on him.


Two hours ago. What time when he signed the contract. That's what I think that first conversation happened. All right, House. We could hear you with Warren Sharp. Talking about trends and plays for the weekend, week four, that's on the Ringer NFL show and then Masters not too far away. Oh, great. It's not getting revved up, in fact. How about this? We're setting Nathan to Las Vegas for two straight weeks, the PGA Tour there in Jackson, Mississippi, this week.


And then it moves to Las Vegas, back to back events in Las Vegas. We're going to send Nate there. We need the PGA Tour to hook us up with a credential, by the way. But now it's going to be there. Assuming he survives. We are going to be in good position for the Masters the first week of November. Can't wait to see. Always a pleasure, Bill Simmons.


All right, welcome to the funeral for Lamar Jackson's career as an MVP quarterback, there are serious here. We're celebrating with Manly Rubin, who is in just complete denial after a disaster of a Monday night game.


Talking about how you failed to talk us out of this, talk us out of Lamar, can't win a big game. I feel fine, it's one game, it's week three now, is it ideal? No, but is any of your slander and cruel hyperbole justified also? No. I feel OK, I've been processing my emotions for a couple of days now, and, you know, one of the things that I've taken heart in is that the team seems to be doing the same thing.


You know, Lamar referred to the chiefs as our kryptonite after the game. And I would just like to observe that. If kryptonite impacts you. It means you're Superman, so I'm still feeling, you know, I had to be able to have that all sound to you like somebody in denial.


I'm just worried this podcast is going to get extremely personal. That was the most Mallery rebuttal I could could think of it. We're bringing it back around to superheroes and mystical, magical things. But I actually kind of agree. I think when I was five, I'm not like I'm not doing this whole. The Ravens have a Chiefs problem. Like everybody has the Chiefs problem. I have a Chiefs problem. Yeah. I'm going to have a Chiefs problem on Sunday as there.


Yeah, that's right. As they're kicking my team's ass. No, the only thing with Lamar and I don't know how old he's going to be when you get, you know, Lamar Caird, my fantasy team. So I stress sore spot for him, even though I dumped him for Kalamurina. The only thing that worries me is the same thing that worried me last year. Like when when he's down 10. And now I've taken away the strength that you have, because now I know you have to throw the ball.


I'm not convinced that they can move the ball down the field by throwing it, but I don't know if it's the receivers or him or both or. I don't know. I just because I bet on the Ravens on Monday and once they went down double figures, I was just like, man, I don't think they can come back from this. And how how do I get rid of that feeling, Mallory?


Well, I think it's important to remember that it was one of those games were just absolutely nothing went right. So if you think back to the opening drive, move down the field with ease until the puzzling decision to go for the field goal instead of going for it on on fourth down. Yeah.


And my my my cat is in the room just making an extraordinary amount of noise right now, by the way. So I assume he's also objecting to your lahmar stance. But if that gets too loud, let me know. You mention the receivers. Mark Andrews, tight end, obviously, but Lamar's go to pass the dreaded rough game, three catches on, eight targets, a couple devastating drops, Hollis Brown, two receptions on six targets. They just were not in sync, were not on the same page.


And I think the ninety seven passing yards game for Lamar, while it was certainly not his best outing of his career.


The stats are harsher than the complete reality was. Also, the game plan was just not there.


And that was obviously exacerbated by the fact that Andy Reid's game plan for the chiefs and the enemy's game plan for the Chiefs was just flawless.


I mean, the innovation, the invention on display, everything coming, the wizardry, they could do whatever they wanted. The Ravens moved away from the run way too quickly. That does not mean, to be clear, that passing effectively is not possible. It just means that the foundation of the offense is the run game.


And part of it is that if it's always just third down and you're losing the time of possession battle and you don't have the ball often, you don't really get a chance to get into rhythm and get into sync. I just have too much confidence in Harbaugh and the coaching staff and overall the analytically inclined approach of the team, which was, you know, a little bit puzzlingly absent on Monday night.


Those are your friends. That will be. But that's how they're oriented. Your friends. Jesus, I didn't realize you were this upset.


It's quite making the exact opposite point.


So they Fitzpatricks let you down.


That was weird that I have. Confidence last in confidence that all of those things will click back into place. I mean, at the end of the day, you're talking about Lamar's record against the rest of the league in the regular season is twenty one to one. He's only three against the Chiefs. That's good. So you start to lump together the Chiefs problem with the playoff problem. Lamar himself said they played us like the Titans played us. That's a paraphrase, but that was the takeaway.


So that becomes the concern is just what is replicable there. But again, it's not just the offense.


All right. All right. Well, your case, you'll be fine. It's going to be one game.


They could they could lose the chiefs and have one really off week at every capacity and still be the second best team in football. I feel like a world two. There's a world to where Andrews doesn't drop that touchdown pass that should have been a touchdown pass. And they score Back-To-Back touchdowns at the start of the second half. And all of a sudden, oh, wow, the Ravens actually can come back. And I do think they have a problem when they get down that's exacerbated.


Some of it has to do with how they play football. And it's OK to admit that. It doesn't mean that we're saying Lamar's bad. It's exacerbated, I think, a little bit by the play calling. I do think that when they tense up, it seems like I don't know why they they go past heavy. And it's not just. First and play action pass is fine, that's great, cool, what's strange is that it seems like they resort to you're seeing Lamar on like a five step drop, seven step drop.


That's not their bread and butter. And it's not about what he can do, what he can't do. It's it's about what are you repping the entire week? What are you practicing? They do so much out of pistol. And it's just strange to me that it seems like when they get behind, they it's not just that they're going to the pass, it's that they're going to certain types of passes that's getting away from what they're so good at.


So I would like to have a better understanding of why that happens. But I think they're just they don't play from behind very much. So I'm not ready to say that this is an unsolvable problem.


That's a fair point. You know, it really made me mad about that game. I got rope a dope by the Chiefs. Because those first two games, which I watched intently and they are just trying to establish the run, they weren't sending their receivers on D passes and then watching them on Monday night, it was so clear that they were saving like other cool plays, all the streaks down the field, multiple guys just running 50 yard pass patterns.


They were just saving it for this Ravens game and that same league play.


Yeah, they're the exact same Chiefs team as last year. But in the first two games, they really didn't look that way at the Chargers. They had a lot of trouble with. And I think, you know, they're doing the classic thing where they were they were just trying to get through that game and save it for the next game. But but coming out of the game, I was bummed out because, you know, I have some fantasies about the Patriots sneaking in their post.


Brady, you know, team of Destiny underachievers, the underdogs, Belichick, greatest achievement, all that stuff. And then you watch the Chiefs do that and you're like, man, I mean, Mahomes was 15 for 19 for one hundred ninety one yards and three touchdowns against the Blitz.


Yeah, that's like what do you do against that. That's. The definition of impossible to defend, and I think you're right, some of it is that, you know, you don't necessarily need to break out everything against the Chargers.


And some of it is, as you know, Nora, you and Kevin have talked about this a lot, like the beginning of the season was always going to be a little bit strange and halted because of the lack of a true preseason, the time to adjust. And the teams that have ultimately struggled with that last are the teams with established offensive schemes and established quarterbacks because they have that continuity in key areas, coaching and quarterback play. But it doesn't mean that everything's going to be perfect right away.


So I don't think there's a single football fan alive who is surprised that in week three, Mahomes looked like Mahomes again, like, of course, that was going to happen. Right? It's a question of if you can you're not going to able to stop and you just have to contain him and try to keep pace. So, again, down to the Ravens, that's where that's what fell apart, was they could do neither. On the Mahomes thing, though, do you to think that.


At least a piece of it was the whole week long MVP jerk circle around Russell Wilson and the MVP and then Aaron Rodgers and the MVP. And it was just like everybody talk about everybody else. Like I do wonder, especially during a pandemic, if those guys even notice stuff like that, because I feel like they do.


I'm glad you mention this, because I was as surprised to hear I was texting constantly with my dad on Monday night. And at one point he said something essentially like this was obviously like a private game for Mahomes to ring because so much of the narrative heading into the game was about it being a private game for Lamar. And my response to that was it felt like the exact opposite to me. It felt like a mahomes like I don't think about this at all game.


Just a reminder that he is not really worried about that. It is not concerning himself with who else is his nominal rival because he doesn't ultimately have one right now. Now, flipside of that is, of course, out there on Twitter with like, you know, the I'll remember this. I'm writing this down emoji when the top 100 players list comes out. So it's not it wouldn't be reasonable or accurate to say that this is not something that is a competitive person is on his or anyone else's mind.


Of course it is.


But I think that he's concerned about having a good season and winning another title. And I think he also probably has a lot of respect for Russell Wilson. Russell Wilson is the MVP of the season so far.


Monday night did not change that nor hurt your part of the Mahomes generation. You're in the same age. What do we call that generation, what we call the 20s Gen Z? Is it a new term?


I'm I think I'm a millennial. I think I'm a millennial. I think people don't understand what age range millennials are. I think I'm about the youngest you can be and still be a millennial.


OK, so you so you're claiming the millennials you.


I'm claiming the millennials, although I think that's right. That's where I get mad is on the older end. I think people will when people think they're talking about GenZE, they're talking about millennials. And I always get frustrated about you. You can be forty right now and be a millennial just because you you know, not all of us grew up with cell phones our entire lives. But I did, obviously, because I'm on the very bottom end of it.


I didn't know if you felt any generational kinship with Mahomes, you know, understanding his emotions and feelings at all times because you're part of the same generation.


I just think anybody is like that, right? Everybody is. I'm always confused and people tell me they're not competitive. I think everybody's competitive, especially when you are online all the time. And it's such a comparative thing. So relatively speaking, I don't get the sense from him that he's a Brady or a Rodgers where it's every. Twenty five years ago, somebody said something that they took slightly the wrong way and they wrote it down and they're going to remember it forever and exact revenge, I don't think Mahomes is like that.


But they all know they all know where they rank on the lists. They all know who they're getting compared to. They all know what their draft status was. They all know all of that stuff. So I guess it's maybe somewhere in the middle. But I don't know that that I looked at that game and thought. That they like super had it circled. I just thought you probably know this from following the Patriots. The funny thing to me was, you know, that thing that happens in New England where they'll have the Malcolm Butler interception is the best example.


But something will go really right. And then afterwards, they'll kind of subtly pat themselves on the back by dropping lines like, oh, yeah, we worked on that in practice. We wrapped that in practice. And it's like, oh, well, aren't you so smart?


Yeah. Mahomes kind of did that, and I don't think that it was like a Nanan and anything, but he started talking about the tackle league play that that was a touchdown to Fisher and went on this whole thing talking to reporters after the game where he was saying, well, we we've run that and we've run it with all the big guys to see who has the best hands. And we'd actually done one rap event where I threw the ball high on purpose to see if he could go up and get it, which ended up being what they had to do.


So that it kind of made me laugh because it was like this thing that I'm so used to hearing from Patriots. Guys are just going like, OK, cool.


You work on every possible situation.


You're always prepared, like you're prepared for this thing that would happen one out of six million times. But the chiefs are kind of getting into that zone right where there are tons of continuity. And they have especially this off season, they were going to be one of those outlier teams that actually had time to be like which one of our tackles could catch a touchdown and could jump and have the hands to do it.


BELICHICK Like, Yeah, pandemic. We worked on that. We worked on what we do. We had a whole three month situational football situational trial about, you know, mass and all that stuff. We were prepared. We were ready at all times for anything.


Malorie. Yeah, I theorized on Sunday's podcast with Sal. That Aaron Rodgers, when the Packers drafted Jordan love, they really were drafting the chip for Aaron Rodgers, his shoulder, and it didn't because that pick made no sense at the time because Rodgers, we still felt like he was a good quarterback for at least the next couple of years. And now they have Aaron Rodgers with a chip on his shoulder.


You agree with that theory? That it was a deliberate choice to try to piss off, I don't think, and incite the competitive streak within, I don't think it was a deliberate choice. I think it was unexpected, the benefit.


There's no doubt that it's the clear boon and net effect.


I mean, that seemed that seemed apparent from the moment it happened that it was going to trigger this return to to form, you know, the dragon fire within or trigger just this aging diva who, you know, it turns into like Desperate Housewives season five, where everybody's just fighting with each other. Everyone's threatened. It could have gone that way, too.


I was prepared for either scenario.


Well, that that seems like there was a brief moment after the draft, certainly, where it seemed like a lot of the talking in media circles and among analysts was like, what will the effect of the potential drama be inside of a locker room? And that part doesn't seem to be there at all. So it's kind of the best of both worlds there. Aaron Rodgers is determined to remind everybody that he's still one of the best players in football and that specifically the the version of of Aaron Rodgers that we're getting now, which is pissed off, ready to prove something not that he needed to prove anything in the first place is one of the most thrilling things that you can have the pleasure of watching as a sports fan.


And LeFleur is out there coaching like hell and they don't seem to all be mad at each other all the time, at least not in a way that's filtering into the public sphere.


So, I mean, they look like one of the four best teams in football right now, or we always have the rabbit team in September. Right. Norra, the team that we always get excited about one or two teams in September, that by the time we get to Thanksgiving. Oh, man. Remember when we thought I do feel like there's a little of that with Seattle because Seattle has no past rush at all and not a very good secondary.


And I don't know if that's sustainable as a real contender. And you go back and you actually look at those games they had, they could easily blast the last two. But with the with the Rogers thing, you weren't covering the Pats when Garoppolo and Brady were there at the same time. Right where you are. You were so what was that dynamic? Could you sense that, that that was a strange dynamic or we you not sure. Or was it fun?


It was weird, it was you could tell it was, where are you? They weren't you know, no one's fighting in public, it's totally fine, but the the when Brady was suspended. You could tell that everyone was a little bit on edge and the funniest thing I remember one, it was in training camp, so it was before the suspension started, but it was some practice and, um. Jimmy looked really good on a on a few scramble drills, and this little mini narrative pops up about, well, you know, he can do some things that Brady can't do.


He's athletic. Look at this guy. And it just it gets into the water stream and the players know that it's in the water stream. So all of a sudden, this is like blinking red light. Do not engage, don't respond, don't feed the beast, don't do anything. And Gronk is in a big scrum of people either after that practice or it might have been the next day. And this was I laughed so hard, I cried when this happened.


Everyone's going at him just trying to get him to say something about, you know, Jimmy's really good at that and Tom's not as good at it. What do you think about that? Do you think that in the first four weeks that's going to give you a little extra wrinkle, whatever, whatever, whatever. And he's not taking the bait. He's not taking the bait. He's not taking the bait. People keep going on it. Finally, he does that.


Gronk laugh and just goes, I make the best scrambled eggs out of everybody and like, runs away.


And it was just totally nonsensical, just weird, like perfect Gronk moment. And so in that sense, it was just heartwarming and perfect. But it was it wasn't like we would see the two of them interacting and there being tension there. But there were just a lot of answers to questions where. Tom would kind of hint at, well, it's not my job to coach him, Jimmy would kind of hint at, well, I got my coaching from other people and you could you could put things together.


I was like, OK, well, these aren't two best friends we're dealing with. And I think that's probably I mean, yeah, they would ask those guys, think of how they got their jobs with Rogers and with Brady. Think of how they got their jobs. I don't know why I would be any way different. Yeah, the media would always be like, Jimmy, what kind of a mentor, a mentor has been to you? And then he'd have to have some stupid answer that you knew he was completely full of shit.


I always enjoy when this happens, but I will I do remember the Malcolm Butler, the the big interception that one is the Super Bowl and NFL Films had that sideline shot of Brady freaking out on the sidelines when they won. And he's like jumping up and down and Garoppolo is jumping up and down behind them. And there's this one split second where it seems like they're going to hug. And he kind of sees Jimmy and then turns and goes to hug whoever just whatever like body was that his left like he just didn't even want to be in the jump up and down hug with Garoppolo and that was when I was like I had the guy with the Microsoft Surface tablet.


He was saying, hey, there's there's somebody who's close to my heart, that guy.


Did you feel this bell in Baltimore when Lamar was trying to unseat Flacco, you know, families, that same kind of vibe. Wouldn't be wouldn't be a best pod without a Flacco mentioned. So thank you for continuing our proud.


I defended Flacco more than you. Flacco was easy enough for you in the playoffs and you turned on him in like six months.


I turning on him requires a change in my stance. I don't think that ever happened. I was pretty consistent throughout.


Well, he went to a Super Bowl. Oh, he was on a Super Bowl winning team. That's that is a more accurate framing, I think. Yeah. Thanks, Joe. Thanks, Joe. Thanks for the Rick.


Do either of you have an NFC team, you become enchanted by the Green Bay. I'm still more enchanted by Seattle just because I think even if their defense is bad, it makes me confident that they will continue to let Russell Cook.


Yeah, the Ross thing is just so fun.


And it's not just Rice, it's who is throwing to I mean, watching Lockette and Metcalf the the necessary requisite asterisk now for when Metcalf is not. Fucking up a sixty three yard touchdown like that, at that point aside, it's so electrifying and the fact that their defense is quite sieve like at the moment has, of course, contributed to this bizarre circumstance where for so many years, anybody watching the Seahawks was just like, why won't they construct a team that is is built around the idea of Russell Wilson being one of the best quarterbacks and the guys putting it first terrified of.


Yeah, and the fact that the defense is letting up so many points has helped to finally trigger this consistent onslaught of of gorgeous Russell Rainbow touchdowns.


It's so much fun. But, Nora, I thought you were going to say another team. I thought you're going to say the Rams because you're all in on the Rams right now.


No. So you like offensive line. That's why I have a very complicated position on the Rams, which is that. They're very good, but it kind of stops there, but I think it's there's so interesting to me right now because, like think of this roller coaster that we've been on with the Rams the last two years. Right. Like twenty eighteen. They're the next big thing. Best offense in football. You know, maybe not the chiefs, but everything is going right.


We're obsessed with Sean McVay. We think Jared Goff is deserving of tons and tons of money.


And it's great I was with you until that last point, but can continue. Right. There's this Stumbo think that was that was consensus. That was consensus in twenty eight.


Did consensus with the millennials that it was Patrick Mahomes.


And I got together and we talked about we thought Jared Goff is a great quarterback and they should pay him a lot of money among football fans who love five yards per attempt.


That was the consensus and an occasional deer in the headlights. But keep going. It was going well. Twenty nineteen. Yeah, it all falls apart, right, and I think it was so it felt so precipitous. Sometimes I first of all, sometimes I forget that they went nine and seven. I was going to say that that's why I picked up in the NFC this year, because last year people act like they were three and 13. They were not insane.


It really.


It really. Yeah. So that's what's fascinating to me, is that like, they were so high and then so low and they really weren't that bad. Right. It was for a pretty simple reason, which was just that everybody on their offensive line got hurt. And that team can't run block in that offense, which is built on the run in the pass, all looking the same until, you know, Defender X is just confused and running the wrong way.


They can't do anything that they want to do, so it's like there was this very clear football answer for why they were struggling to persuade Phillips that was the other one.


He kind of died last year.


Yeah, that yeah. I didn't think I could happen to like 70. You can't be a defensive coordinator until you're one hundred. Like, at some point you're not going to have anywhere.


I want to be very clear. Wade Phillips is alive. Well, I mean, didas like a like a football coordinator, you know, as I know. But people get confused.


But yes, there somebody is. Let's say Wade Phillips is dead. But if it is, I know he's now retired. He's doing great. He's having a nice, calm Texas somewhere, probably. But some of those linemen that got, you know, trial by fire reps that didn't go so well last year, they're playing a lot better this year. And it's like the switch is back on and yeah, it's not a bad year to be. In the NFC, right, because I still really like the Seahawks and I like the Packers, too, obviously, and I would take probably either one of those over the Rams because I just trust their quarterback so much more.


But all of a sudden, it's like, here come the Rams. And I just can't think of an example of something that we've gone so high and so low. And it's the reasons have been kind of clear if you just drill down to level two. But we're all on level one where it's like, is Sean McVay a genius or is he not? And it's just a very funny it's been like a very funny sort of. Few years, that's kind of Internet culture, Sean McVay, genius, shumba, very overrated kind of moves from narrative to narrative.


I like I like campus team, despite my reservations about Brady being able to play four or five months just because they have some really, really high end skill guys. And I think their defense is pretty frisky, you know, totally. I do think they can do some stuff. And, you know, even like as a like a fantasy football defense, they're going to have games where they're going to have like twenty point days against the red team.


And, you know, I don't think that division is particularly hard out of they then at the NFC East is an abomination. And there's just not a lot of good teams. So you almost have to look at it like who has talent? It's not even like football teams is like who has like nine really talented guys, Tampa. So now you agree with me on that one?


Well, I think that the division point is key because we can we can lump the the Bucs and the Rams together for a second there. You know, when you're talking about the offensive line improvements for the Rams and how much of their offense is predicated on like pace and rhythm and how much a healthy line facilitates in that respect.


And you look at something like, OK, they lost the bill's game, but there was a stretch in the second half of that game where Aaron, Donald just so quickly, efficiently and flawlessly reminded everyone watching that whenever he wants, he can just completely take over and control the game and is the best football player alive.


Right. But then you look at their division and every team in that division, even the Niners who have been riddled, riddled by injuries and really had a rough start to the year, all of those teams are still good.


I mean, the Cardinals, you know, both have talked about a lot on your pads this year, obviously electric. It's so fun to watch.


We've already talked about the Seahawks and then you swing in. The Bucs, I don't think are as confidence inspiring as the Rams, certainly the Seahawks, but. Drew Brees looks one hundred years old so far, I don't know if that will continue to be the case and obviously getting a healthy Michael Thomas back in and other things like that could help. But Panthers do not look like a good football team this year. And the Falcons are one of the disasters of the season so far.


You know, there's a handful of and three teams or, oh, two and one teams that you would lump in with the two and three teams, because in some ways they've been even worse. Talk about the Eagles. Of course, you know, that division is just so thin that the Bucs would have to completely implode to not make the playoffs. That's how I feel. Plus, we even mentioned the Bears, yet the Bears are going to be like 15 you.


No. And we're going to be like, I don't know if they can make the playoffs.


Well, they're the team that, you know, I don't understand that.


They're the team I thought of earlier when you mentioned when we were talking about the Packers and you mentioned these like September barrages, I don't think of the Packers at all. But I'd look at another team in their own division and say, you could make the case for for the Bears if you want.


Can it be can it be a mirage, though, if nobody can even see it in the first place? I don't know that you can't see it. People are guarding their eyes against looking at it.


So funny is that there are a few things I enjoy watching more than a Biscuit Foles storyline unfolding in real time. That's the good shit right there.


Well, my son, who's playing fantasy football for the first time ever this year and took Allen Robinson and didn't realize Drabinsky was bad and has been through the same rollercoaster ride that I think all real Bears fans go on and is now all excited because, as he says, Big Dick Dick is going to fix Robinson and do all this. And it's like having a Bears fan in the house just through the old Robinson fantasy lens.


But, you know, every year we have a team that goes 12 and four. Or 11 and five, but usually it's 12 and four and you just go, how the fuck did that happen? And it's going to happen in the NFC with somebody? Because I think the NFC, I went from thinking the NFC had more good teams to actually thinking, you know, you might have this really stacked NFC West and then basically one decent team per division and that's it.


So we're going to see a weird record. And, you know, all they have to do the rest of the way is go nine and four. They get to play the Vikings again. I think they're playing like a third or fourth place schedule. It's not it's not completely unrealistic. Plus, like, is it crazy to think Nick Foles would actually be decent, like, he was really good and that second half and everybody's like, oh, that's just what he does.


And it's like, no, he was good. Like, let's hand it to him. He almost had four touchdowns. Robinson had that one. That turns to be interception where we can say, naw, he almost had like three interceptions.


But but that's that's the power of big technik, though. He flirts with disaster and success at all times. And he's just got this information. I didn't include that in my calculus. There you you make a very solid point. Now, had that with Flacco, where it was like when he was just three years of his, he was racking up a third of eighteen. Just that that he gave downfield with the guy is like, wow, he did the strategy.


Some guys just have it. Some guys just have the horseshoe.


I I've cooled that fire zone a little bit after last week and partially because they cost me money. But there I just wasn't impressed by their defense and they couldn't really survive a poor Cuyler game. And I don't I think that division other than the Rams, I don't know what to make. Of the other three teams, you could tell me San Francisco's going to finish like six and 10, seven and nine. I wouldn't be, like, shocked because they've had so many injuries already and usually that gets worse.


And then the Seattle thing, they just don't have a good defense. I know it's Russell. He's always going to go ten and six. But I think that division has the highest kind of variance. You look around at the other ones, even the NFC East, like I think if they had had a decent quarterback, Washington would have been pretty good. Haskins was so bad last week. It's almost like it's completely impossible for them to even go six and ten, although I think they're going to get rid of him.


Any other sleepers were missing in the NFC or No. Washington is the one I have circled as when they change quarterbacks, I'm watching their next game to see at least what it looks like, but that that division's not going to generate more than one playoff team.


But I say as as the one that replaces Dallas, if Dallas, who knows? Now, it could be said in that division.


Oh, I mean, I don't even know if you'll need to go nine and seven to win that. I still think it's going to it's going to be the Cowboys. Yeah. I mean, obviously, the Giants are a complete nonfactor across. Some of the Eagles have been you know, we have we have a lot of a lot of winless teams so far.


But the Eagles have certainly been one of the great disappointments of the season there. Barring the extraordinary return to form for Carson Wentz or Jalen Hurts led resurgence, perhaps. I don't know. I still think that's that'd be hilarious.


Division to win. I don't see I don't see Washington coming through with that. But part of that is probably that I'm counting on a big Ravens bounce back this week against against Washington.


I think they would have beaten the Browns last week if Haskins hadn't been such a disaster that was sitting there. I don't believe in the Browns at all. And I've been thinking about throwing them, betting against them in million dollar picks this week. Once they got the lead, they were just able to run the ball every down. And that's and then you can just they're so afraid to unleash Baker at this point. I think Stefanski must have looked at two years of Baker highlights and been like, oh, Jesus, I didn't I didn't realize it was this bad because they're not asking him to do anything.


Do you like any AFC sleeper's? Nor at this point seems like the Chargers have had too many injuries. Anybody? It's funny, I don't actually mind the Browns.


OK, make the case the running game couple a couple of blue chip D. What else. A lot of talent, and I would like to give Stefanski Baker just a little bit more time to figure it out. I think they have started. Star, did you see him on the bootlegs, you see him getting moving. You see him like doing the sort of Kirk Cousins stuff that has been really effective, OK and OK. Yeah. So maybe he watched the Baker tape and went, wow, I didn't quite know I didn't quite know what the Lowes looked like here.


But this is a guy who just did this with Kirk Cousins. Right. So it's not as if he's incapable of of making do. And I think that, like, the Odel stuff is troubling and confusing and I just don't know what's going on. But they have enough pieces that fit together that I think now when we're talking about sleeper, I'm talking about teams that I've watched and thought, OK, if things start to go right and they start to look a little bit better, like that's all of a sudden a fun team and interesting team to watch.


The problem is. Getting the one seed is such a big deal and they're not, you know, you got to win your division, they're not going to win their division. So it's you hit a dead end. But I don't think that they're as bad as they look. OK. You like the you like the bills, Valerie, I do. I think the bill. Yeah, I think the bills are legit. It's a bizarre time to be alive in numerous respects right now.


But watching watching the bills play as an undefeated team and watching Josh Allen do the things that Josh Allen is doing. But the Bush-Cheney sniper. No, not a sleeper.


I mean, they're undefeated.


They're they're one of the I think they'd be a super Super Bowl sleeper, not a not a pass.


This is like this is like the football version of multiple years and nobody knowing what Apex Mountain means. What do we mean when we talk about a sleeper here together?


Exactly like a dick snob's. Or if I was how she got back for the Lamar stuff at the beginning. By the way, Valerie, you mentioned you mentioned the Falcons briefly. I just realized what we have to do to solve this lahmar question. We have to get the Ravens. We have to get the Ravens down by double digits against the Falcons.


Oh, yeah, that and that's a that's a great one. Can can we make sure that Dan Quinn has a job long enough for that to transpire?


That would be great, because you he can't pull that off. Then we have a problem. It's Hollywood brown deserving of the name Hollywood. Like, should he just because the e e Hollywood brown, is he is he good enough to be Hollywood first? Or maybe like maybe a lot of great brown, a lot of great stuff in East Hollywood.


And second of all, Hollywood Brown is a is a delight. What are you talking about? I want to thank him. He's been great.


Didn't even realize he's on the field Monday night. And then he dropped the pass. I was like, oh, there he is.


Oh, my God, this is this is just unfounded and cruel. Should we talk about Josh Allen? So here's the thing, I thought he I thought he was really good in the Rams game, and yet on that final drive, I waited for him to blow it the whole time. And then it was third and 20 to go to go, basically. And I thought.


I thought the Rams bailed them out, they gave them basically a wide open dude over the middle to throw it to Sebelius and it was like fourth and eight instead of, you know, third and twenty fourth, the twenty seven, whatever. And then the pie was terrible. And I do feel like if either of those plays goes differently, the conversation this week is Josh Allen. Does he have it good enough? And it was like football, so stupid sometimes because it's those two plays very easily could have gone the other way.


And then we're like Oh is this kind of good? Can hold a lead. What's going on with this dude? I do think he looks more accurate than he did last year. I would say is the one big benefit with them, right?


Totally sure. Particularly downfield. And the the Diggs upgrade is, I think, one of the most just night and day ad. One guy at an offense changes yet things that's happened this year. And they've they've done a lot of work in past off seasons to kind of build to that point. They improved the offensive line. They gave him guys like Beasley to to work the middle of the field. But then that was the issue. Right, is that he has and he has a great arm.


He can he can throw the ball very far, but he couldn't throw the ball far accurately and he's gotten better. But then they also gave him the best deep ball receiver in football and it clicked so automatically. I think it's very cool. I think it was two things. It was the accuracy question and then the confounding play question, which was sometimes one in the same, but not always. And so that that's still the thing, right, that you're that you're looking at this year, because he has he has ten touchdowns and only one interception.


But that doesn't mean there haven't been moments where, like, what is Josh Allen doing? For example, he was flagged for a facemask and I was going to conduct penalty last week, which is like I've never said that, although it's strange. That's just bizarre. And those are the like only happened in a Josh Allen football game.


I also had like a he had that failed lateral. He also sometimes there are quarterbacks and usually it's just when they're in a terrible offense where you'll notice that they spend a lot of time like they are. 15 yards behind the line of scrimmage, just like running in the wrong direction, and their faces are like looking out to the sideline basically, and you're just going, what is going on here? Josh Allen is in a very good offense and that still happens sometimes.


And we do have to work on that. But there's there's a lot to love. And I don't Josh, I'm not a believer. I have my money stolen. Bill Belichick. Can I ask you about covering football in a covered era before we before we even get to the Tennessee game, like just all the stuff you miss from the way life used to be, where you could just kind of wander around, pull people to the side, get little things here and there, go to practices, things like that.


And I don't even know how much reporters can do on that front anymore. But how do you get information now? It's funny, it's like you you have to rely on people that you already know really well a lot, but it's also you kind of have to rely on, like the big swings, right? Like there used to be kind of two different two different ways that you would talk to people, you could talk to people and you have a scheduled interview or you make sure that someone has a decent chunk of time to talk about a particular topic and really get a lot of follow ups and get in with it.


But then sometimes you're doing stories where. Whatever the topic is, maybe it's a trend, maybe it's a person you want to supplement it by, just if you're in a locker room, go around and ask 15 guys the same question and just see how they answer, see what comes up, see sort of you're basically taking a poll, right? Like sometimes. Is this a thing or is this am I sort of off base with where I'm going here?


But you just do these these like little sort of fishing things and try to get a sense, a vibe. And that's what you can't do, which I think is is sometimes it's hard to kind of have your bumpers and no. Am I going in the right direction here, like to the people who are actually involved in this feel the same way that that I do. It's not actually that hard to get someone to spend 10 minutes on the phone with you or spend forty five minutes on the phone with you, if that's what it takes.


Like those things, people still have a lot of downtime to fill. So they're they're pretty easy to get in that sense. But the little ones, those those I miss and I didn't realize that I was going to miss them.


Isobella, check press conference more boring in person or until I can catch actually kind of like zoom discussion.


And on Zoom Crushin he's like I think he sort of feels proud that he's learned something and you know, he's wearing his ripped up pretty good time.


And then it's like you can do the handoff and then Cam slides in and he's wearing his hat and everything. I don't think he minds it.


It would be funny if he got into it, had like a zoom background, like Mallory's background right now. And it was like shots of him and his family and all that. How many how many Belichick family members are we up to and the coaching staff now? It's just too still right to know grandkids on there yet or anything. Any cousins now yet? I think I think the grandkids are a very small. This is a big thing for my dad.


He loves making fun of the the Belcher kids. Any time something goes wrong defensively gets very upset. Balaklava, this is when you have your kids, kids running a defense. Bring the puppy out there.


He had a very involved in the draft. You know, keep it going. Really sweet.


And I think he. You love that. It's a human for you for words.


Oh, I love that. So they canceled. They didn't cancel. They moved it, the Steelers game. We're waiting for this moment to happen. And the league handled it exactly like we expected they would. They just keep the machine going. We switch the bigwigs around, do it. I'm sure it will happen again. Did we learn anything more from this whole week and any new lessons that you didn't expect? I mean, I'd be I'd be curious to hear Nora, you know, you wrote a piece for The Ringer today about this, and you've obviously you did a lot of reporting in the preseason in particular about covid protocol and how the league would handle the, I guess, simultaneously predictable and that this seemed inevitable.


And also the the the inherently unpredictable aspect of how this is unfolding in real time. You know, I think that with the Titans Steelers rescheduling itself, you know, the scenarios are in play there by week shuffles with the Steelers Ravens in midseason. You know, there's the week 18 possibility. I think that that part of it seems like it will be. Handled effectively, I think the question starts to become, well, what happens if this balloon's right?


It's not there's no reason to think and I don't mean to be like a doomsday scenario about it, just practically like there's no reason to think that this will be the only time this happens. Right. You know, look at what happened in baseball this season where where more than one team was was impacted by a spread in a surge in cases so so far at least. And we're recording this early afternoon on Thursday, so far at least, the Vikings have not announced positive tests.


Right. That's still the latest information. Yeah. So that will be one thing to monitor because the Titans did have their first positive test, a coach before the team travel to play the Vikings. And I think that will be one of the things to monitor moving forward if and hopefully this will not happen, obviously.


But if there is ultimately positive caseload in the Vikings organization, well, then why did the Titans travel if they had a positive test, et cetera? So hopefully that does not come to be then you start to look at a kind of a wider web. You know, a story surfaced on Thursday morning that the driver who had been driving the Titans in Minnesota was also the driver who had been driving the Astros when they were in Minnesota to play the Twins and the baseball playoffs.


You know, everybody seems to be saying that that that is the contact tracing has been effective.


There's the story with the Raiders about the charity event where certain players were not wearing their masks this week and the league is looking into the protocol in that organization and whether it is being handled effectively.


Obviously, numerous coaches and organizations have had fines, hefty hefty fines levied against them so far this season for failure to wear masks in a high-Profile situation.


Like, again, I don't want to be like super glam and intense here, but I think it's like it's it's very tempting when everybody's watching football together to, like, make fun of Andy Reid's face shield for fogging up and have fun online and make beams on Twitter like that's part of that's part of watching sports in twenty. Right. You have to find your way where you can. But I'm like, good for Andy Reid, for wearing a fucking face shield.


Like, hopefully everyone starts taking this as seriously as they should.


And this can be limited and and capped. I just don't know. It's OK.


To be fair, Mallory hasn't left her apartment in seven months and has just been eating tuna fish sea. And I had just extraordinary amount of soup. I will let it pass through. And she's got her background because behind her is just like Campbell's Soup.


It's just empty cans of tuna fish.


Nora, what did you learn from from this all week with the covid stuff?


So we actually haven't learned it yet is the thing because. What's going to really tell us what's going on is. Tomorrow, when they get today, Thursday's round of testing back both in Tennessee and in Minnesota and then in particular in Minnesota, and then the next couple of days, as if we're talking about Sunday as the time of exposure, the median incubation period is like four or five days. So we're not there yet. And with that, a group that size, the fact that none of them have tested positive, the Vikings and I think forty eight of them, the NFL's contact tracing devices said were in close contact with guys from Tennessee who ended up testing positive.


If it's forty eight of them, some of those guys are going to they're going to they would come back positive before the meeting incubation period. But it doesn't mean that they've ruled out having an issue there. So when they originally said that the game wasn't going to be on Sunday, it was out there that it was either going to be Monday or Tuesday. And that was always that was always a red flag, because really what they were saying is this game's not going to be Sunday.


Yeah, we'd like to buy a little bit of time so that we can figure it out. But it's not going to be Sunday. And we need to tell we need to tell the Steelers in particular, keep practicing, change your schedule, do whatever. The thing that I'm curious about is if they will change a policy that they've had to not test on game days because they're testing every day, but they're not testing on game days. And I don't know if this is a like a to be cause and effect, but what comes to mind is what happened with Matt Stafford, where he had the false positive over the summer during training camp, and it caused a lot of anxiety, both for the Lions and for Stafford and his family, but also in the league about, OK, so what happens if we get a false positive and so they don't do it on game day?


Because if you get a false positive, then you don't have time to rule it out. Yeah, so there's a possibility that Cam Newton or whoever gets a false positive has to miss a game and then they realize that nothing's actually wrong. But then now we're seeing the flip side of that, right, so one possibility, and this isn't coming from anybody that I've spoken to, but just thinking it through. Why couldn't they just do a day of game testing if either team has had someone test positive in the week prior?


Seems like a pretty you're not using a ton more resources to do that. It's not like you're not going to have tons and tons of false positives. So I don't know if I wonder if there will be a change with that policy, because it seems like maybe some of this could have been avoided. But I think we also see that it's a tough thing. Right. And and they've done such a they had so few cases that I don't know if people got complacent, but maybe they did.


And once you have a few, it's really hard to stop. It's not hard to it's not hard to stop if you're in a bubble. Right. We've learned this, but once it gets in there, it's it's really tough. So I think we just have to see what happens the next few days. And if it starts steamrolling, then I think probably that week 18 situation is more likely because then you start wondering, OK, maybe there's going to be more than one game that has to be moved.


But otherwise it seems like they have options to shuffle the by and if they can tamp it down, they can tamp it down. But I just don't think anybody's sort of out of the woods yet.


We is definitely happening. I wouldn't be surprised if week 19 happened. I'm sure they had to to swing weeks built in there if they need them, because the other thing is and NBA won't be back by then anyway, football can own as much as of the counters they want. And if they need to move stuff back one week, two weeks to get everything done, they're going to do it what they can.


They can get one more money for them. Right.


And they can get one weekend without moving the Super Bowl. But if even if they needed to get to they have alternate dates reserved to the Super Bowl if they need them.


So one person is that we're getting covid is Mallory, who is like Desmonte in Lost and is has not seen another human being seven months other than her husband.


A couple of things I will observe that, you know, though, it said quarantine on the hatch door. The hatch door does open and Desmond is exposed to the elements. Now, we'll leave all good player details about the quarantine plot line on Lost for another podcast and another time.


But, you know, don't jinx me because I'm taking it very seriously and trying to be careful. But I'm very I'm very paranoid. As you know, Bill, I'm an asthmatic. I don't want to get sick. I don't want anyone to get sick. I want everyone to be healthy and happy. Mallory was it was the first person who carried around Purell that I think I've ever met. Way back when you were you were on this earth, I had a love of hand sanitizer and she never passed like January, are we talking about years past?


We're talking like mid 2010s ferral for a couple.


I don't know exactly when I started doing this for a while at the office long before any of this, I would I had I had taken to trying to avoid touching doorknobs whenever I could wipe out doorknobs, put her user T-shirts, open the door, and we would be like, what are you doing?


She was where I don't want to get sick. I don't get sick. You know, I got a lot of work to do for you, Bill. That's how I feel.


The same way I see people. It's so funny to learn these things because I feel like, you know, we seem like we see on the surface.


Yeah. We're not certainly speaking of not normal on the surface. All right. Before we go, Mallory, best thing you've watched over the last ten weeks. Oh, wow, yeah. Best thing I've watched over the. I intentionally don't prepare her with stuff like this because then she'll obsess over it and think about it for like this. He means anything we're going to talk about on a podcast.


But yes, stuff like this. Yeah. Any topic, basically. Best thing that I've watched over the last ten weeks, Norah has actually heard me talk about this already, Avatar, The Last Airbender and Legend of Korra, two animated fantasy shows that take place in the same universe. Old Nickelodeon shows now on Netflix. Just phenomenal, phenomenal. The worldbuilding, the character development, the resonance of the themes, the magical creatures shouts to populate Momoh. It's just great.


Absolutely phenomenal. Aside from that, because I know you're not interested in discussing that with me, although I would like to I would like to discuss it with you.


I would say I've been quite enjoying it, quite enjoying the boys son, Chase Crawford in the deep room. Remember the Romo family?


That's been a lot of fun. You know, there's been a lot of a lot of sports on lately. So I have to watch the boys. I've played that a couple of times. Well, first, some very, very easy to binge. I mean, it's you know, it's only one season. One was eight episodes were like six into season two. So you can catch up in no time.


It's extraordinarily violent, but it's a very fun, very fun and provocative and subversive show about superhero culture and the grip that has on our on our pop culture, consumption and society. It's really clever and very fun.


So a lot of like exploding heads. Right. An extraordinary number of exploding heads. Yes. And as I mentioned on Slow News Day, some some adults are consuming breast milk, which is, you know, mileage may vary, although you find that compelling. But I'm enjoying it. Great shows.


It's happy times in the seven states right now because first of all, South Park came back last night. They did a pandemic episode, which my son was out of his mind about, but he's been bingeing.


Fresh Prince of Bel Air, which is something I've wanted for a while, and it's been finally happening and it's the theme songs just on all the time in the house and every episode I walk into, I end up sticking around for 15 minutes. And it's just nice to have all those people in my life. I missed a lot of them so that there was recently a fresh prince, Air Jordan five retro release drop.


Oh, I tried to get if I got fucked by the Seekers app, as always. Yeah, the bots took it down. I forgot how many cameos are on that show that are just like so specific to that era. Like there is one show we're watching. It was just Bo Jackson just showed up. There's no real reason for it. They just like shoehorned them in. And it was like vintage Bo before you heard it, said Bo Jackson, nor what are you watching?


Do you want to talk about your Instagram show?


Yeah, this is great. This is the perfect setup. OK, so there's a show on Instagram live called Let's Fucking Date, and it's phenomenal. And I love it. It's a little so it's now it's on Wednesdays at eight thirty and it's a little tough this season there in the second season. So this girl named Serena Kerrigan started it in quarantine and it's just her going on Instagram live dates from her apartment. OK, it's incredible. It's like so she has, you know, a producer or somebody, and she's done this all herself.


Find someone they've had a couple like Bachelor Universe people be the dates like, I don't know if you remember Iggy from Rachel Lindsays season, he didn't last that long, but he was on there. He was he was one of our dates ones. And so they just because you can do the Iggy live like split screen, so you just watch the live and they go on a date and they're not in the same place, obviously. So it's totally like socially.


Where do they go on a date? How do you go on a date if you're not on a date? OK, so she's like sitting on her couch, she's got a drink in her hand. And this dude is like also sitting on his couch in his set up at home. Same situation. Some of them will like send her a cocktail kit or something or one of them. They did paint by numbers and they'll try to make it fun. But then the thing that's crazy about it is the thing that's crazy about it is that you get all of the, like, weird pauses and you can see on their faces when they like something or don't like something about the other person, you just get all of that like first date.


Weird thing. And in the first season, she would have second dates with some of the people they didn't. They need to figure out how to like make it a clear competition and have a winner because obviously the guys don't know each other. They just interact with her. So it's missing that component. But she's really funny and really, like, sort of aggressive in the way that you need to be in that environment. And I just I think it's so good because it literally is like it's like spying on people.


And we miss that right now. Right. Like nobody's going out. You don't have opportunities to, like, eavesdrop and gossip and be like, what are those two doing? And this is exactly that. I just get to, like, hit my phone and then see two people being like, so like, why are you single if, like, your life's going so great and what you feel is bad and it's so good, it's like it's a little harder.


So I found this season harder because they do it, they post it the next day. But if you don't watch it live, you can't just like. I can't click into it at nine thirty pm on Wednesday, I ever have to watch it right when it's on or I have to wait a day. And if I don't if I can't do it right at eight thirty on Wednesday, I'm always bummed. I'm like, I don't want to wait for this.


So I really I love it. I think it's so great. I have a question now that that aspect of it, the live viewership like is that is that actually an active part of the fan experience? Like if you watch somebody on instillations comments and feedback, like people in there, like talking about their chemistry and the awkward pauses and the quality of their arts and crafts work, she all she's like always saying to the guys, she's always like, don't read the comments, stop.


Look, I can see you looking at the comments and they're mostly pretty good. But there is there's also so after she goes on the dates and usually a standard episode is two dates, but then afterwards there's an after show and a few dates of different guys in one episode. Yes, OK, got it. So she'll do one and then the other. So we're not getting like two weeks of like back to back dates with one person. No, I have advanced tonight too with Jerry and you're seeing it all at once.


You're literally they spend half an hour with each other and you see the whole half hour of each of them. And I will say, like, she's pretty funny. I don't think that, like, it takes a specific person to keep you engaged for that long if you're literally just hearing everything that they talk about. And I think she's able to pull it off. But then afterwards they do an after show and there's a bunch of pretty after show after show.


Oh, my God, there's like frequent commenters and they'll go live with her and they'll break down the dates and they'll talk about what happened and they'll talk about like if there were friendzone vibes or if somebody said something really weird or if this sounds like something my daughter would devour.


It's so I can't think of anything more in her wheelhouse.


And because here's the thing is that it's a total product of social media. Right, because there was one. Sometimes somebody will pop up and they can just request her to be on the after show and they'll message and be like I used to work with that guy at Macy's, like, so I'm telling the truth, like, let me tell you what the deal is. And then they pop on and be like, Steve's full of it and you learn all the different ways in which Steve's full of it.


It's so good. I love this show. That sounds awesome. We watched The Father of the bride, part three, whatever it was on YouTube. I've just zoomed content. Not for me. We're all on Zoom too much anyway. I don't need I don't need my movies to be in Zoom. I'd rather just watch old movies set in an era where we weren't on Zoom all the time.


I just couldn't do it. Instagram live. You can er play to your television.


Oh, that's good. I was I it dawned on me, if the pandemic never if it doesn't slow down for the next year, I don't know how they're going to keep putting out movies and TV. Like I saw, billions got renewed today. It's like, what are they renewing? They can't film it. Well, is some some productions that have come back, I think the question is the ones that require, like Phalcon, Winter Soldier, Disney, plus they got to go back to Prague at some point.


Right, to finish filming for that. When's that going to happen?


But so, you know, there's a lot of TV that is made over the last stretch of time, pre pandemic that they're still going be able to put out. It's like when that well dries before a story generated from the full return are going to be a whole.


What's the world going to be?


Yeah, let's fucking date is going to be winning all the Emmys. It's fucking Peyton's a bachelorette comes back and I think we're just three weeks away from Claire. Clear which one's bachelorette first, then bachelor.


Bachelorette is is coming back. It's a different schedule than usual, but they are they're going to be airing it. I think it begins October 13th, I want to say.


The Bachelorette, that sounds right. Yeah, we're where the covid viruses and the only virus you need to be afraid of. Twenty five. Twenty five sleezy Thatchers green screen, you know.


Yes, I'm I think that show's going to have its biggest season ever because it's going to feel like it's going to be like when sports came back or it's like, oh, this feels kind of normal when we have this like a communal show.


Yeah, the dates will be weird because the dates are going to be like, hey, let's go in the backyard. And that's going to be like a group date because where are they going to go? Or let's go to Santa Monica Pier.


Nobody's Santa Monica Pier. There's literally zero people like I don't know what they do, but it'll be nice to have a back kayaking.


Highjacking interesting idea, nor what's Boston like right now before we go? My dad said it's pretty depressing, but of all the bars and restaurants are pretty much. Pretty much closed. It's funny, I don't know, I guess I don't find it. A lot of places are closed, but a lot of places have outdoor set ups. I think it's OK compared to this time last year. Yeah, it's super depressing, but a lot of places have rebounded, um, or at least figured out ways to sort of carry on a little bit normally, like, um, some of the it was a little weird.


Like which bars sold enough food to be able to start to buy our things. Yeah. Um, but I think people are OK. People seem pretty responsible to the infection rates are pretty low. So I think there's a lot of people just trying to take advantage of the last chunk when it's nice outside, but. Walking on the Esplanade, you know. I haven't been out I don't know what like the restaurant scene is like too much because I kind of steer clear, but it seems like people are doing OK.


I hope I can't imagine the Boston bar scene without super crowded bars with drunk guys spitting all over each other as they talked. Yeah, I know that's been eliminated completely.


Well, that was the SO and this is very regional. But like in near me one place, Beacon Hill pub that I love, they've figured out an outdoor situation. But there's another place, by the way, that's hilarious, because pub picking up pub is just like if you're not indoors, like you're not you're not.


The whole point of that is everyone's indoors. You're just super sweaty and you're covered in other people's spit as they scream over whatever terrible music's playing. Right.


And that's like so there's a lot of places that are like that where where I guess it's a I just walk by and go, I'm happy that you're able to do something. I'm a little confused about how this is going to work when there's eight seats like on the sidewalk. And that's all that we're doing here. But and then some other places, like just still haven't done anything. But what I think everybody is just sort of like bracing for winter.


Now, I did an outdoor dinner last week with a friend of mine. We weren't within ten feet of anyone else. It was actually kind of great.


That sounds lovely. I realise it's actually just super normal. I really enjoyed it. It was weird every time the waiter walked up with a mask and it's like, here's your shop. Oh, you were at a restaurant? I thought, Oh yeah, Yade.


I went to a restaurant. Yeah, it was great, we weren't within 10 feet of anybody and it was a big enough kind of outdoor thing that it just kind of where it felt normal for an hour. Good. Now we're back on Zoome, which is basically our entire lives. This is really fun. Nora, we can hear you on Sunday nights with Kevin Clark on the show and on a bunch of other places. When you pop up on the website, write great pieces for us.


All that stuff, Mallory. You know, you're just Vallerie, you're the editor in chief, and you have some things up your sleeve as well. Coming up, rumors, rumors of a couple more podcast, things like that. It was good to see you guys. I am sorry about I'm sorry about Lamar. There's going to be stuff. I'm really sorry about Ma. Ma, I believe in the Ravens.


Everything is fine. I wish you both well. I hope that you enjoy the the Vikings. Texans don't trade your best receivable and all the rest of the games. Happy week for by Nora.


Bye. All right. That's it for the podcast.


Thanks to House. Thanks to Mallory and Nora. Thanks to Stu Gotz. Thanks to Spotify. We will see you on Sunday night with the cause. And if you're a big watchbox fan, we have one of my favorite movies ever coming on Monday night. Stay tuned for that. We also moved the majority of the watchbox library to Spotify only. So if you love the way we watch movies, you can still get the last 60 days of podcasts. But then and then a couple a couple other classics.


But then if you want the entire library of one hundred and fifty plus movies, go to Spotify and that's where you can get them. See you Sunday. Because Cousin then.