This play should have given the Niners a fumble recovery at midfield with a lead and only a couple of minutes left. Unfortunately, the refs called a penalty and the rest is history. The Niners' offense keeps getting worse every game. At this point they'll be lucky to make the playoffs.
If you follow the NFL closely, you've heard the story about Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin. Martin left the team, claiming that Incognito was bullying him. In the last couple of days stories have been surfacing from the Miami players that, no, Richie isn't a bully.
This is what we know: Martin was a two-time All-American lineman in college. He was drafted by the Miami Dolphins last year to play left tackle. We also know that ever since high school Incognito, for whatever reasons, has been kicked off a number of teams he's played on. Incognito is now indefinitely suspended pending (apparently) a team investigation.
One figures that it men who are six and a half feet tall and weigh over 300 pounds just can't be bullied. Maybe "bully" is the wrong term.
We have phone calls where Incognito left phone messages for Martin, calling him an n[word], telling him he was going to [defecate] in Martin's mouth, and threatening to kill Martin's mother. The counter story is that Incognito was merely trying to motivate his teammate.
In most of the world this kind of motivation doesn't work. Martin, whose parents are lawyers and who graduated from Stanford, apparently didn't get motivated by this. When Bill Walsh was a coach he didn't abide hazing or bullying. Jim Harbaugh, the current Niners coach and Martin's coach in Stanford, doesn't allow for it. This is his second year with the team. At some point, if as some rumors have it, coaches on the team wanted to "toughen up" Martin perhaps they might have noticed that their strategy wasn't working. If they were completely unaware of Incognito's motivational speeches over the course of two seasons, then maybe there is a problem with communications skills of the coaching staff.
Some defenders of Incognito say, "Hey, everyone uses the n[word] in locker rooms. Richie was an honorary brother." He apparently wasn't Jonathan Martin's honorary brother. I've never had an honorary brother threaten to kill my mother and s[word] in my mouth. If I did I don't think I'd get all warm and cuddly and brotherly.
Granted, I got cut from my high school freshman football team because I wasn't aggressive enough, so I haven't had lots of experience in towel-slapping locker room antics.
But I think that the big point here is the simple "different strokes for different folks" and when you find that something isn't working then you try something else.
Now it sounds like a lawsuit of some sort may be coming. Incognito, who's bounced from team to team because of his effervescent personality quirks, may be nearing the end of career. Maybe, despite his bona fides in college, Martin isn't cut out to be a pro football player. Or maybe he'll end up playing on a team where the coaches have better human relations skills.
I wouldn't bet on the health of Miami quarterbacks with two starting linemen off the team.
I spent my day watching football. Unfortunately, neither the Niners nor the Raiders were on the networks up here in Portland. You'd think in a week where Seattle plays on Monday that they'd show Bay Area games up here.
So I spent the day watching The Red Zone, which switches from game to game to catch when someone scores in one of the NFL games. It's sort of like eating the frosting off a dozen cakes without eating any cake. Not enough and yet too much.
The good news is that both the Niners and Raiders won, but it would have been nice to actually see an entire game instead of just morsels.
We started out by going to Sayler's Steak House. I had a nice 16-ounce prime rib. Well, I ate half of it and brought the rest home. It was nice going out with Joan.
Saturday was a lot of college football. I didn't get to the shower until four-thirty. Moving a little slow. At dinnertime Nancy from down the street came over and helped Joan make pizzas on our grill outside. Before she retired Nancy was a baker. I went across the street to the Laurelwood and filled up our growler with some Mother Lode Ale.
Today is a full day of NFL football, ending with the Niners up in Seattle tonight.
I'm not sure if I'm in football shape. I slept until 9:30 yesterday, which meant that I didn't see all of the pre-game shows. And I don't know if I'm in shape for a full twelve hours on the couch.
Still, the centerpiece, the Niners-Packers game, was a classic. The Niners were a little sloppy with their tackling, and I worry about their cornerbacks, but Colin Kaepernick was great. Joan and I were kissing our biceps all afternoon.
Must say I was all footballed out by the Sunday Night game. But I hung in there.
But I must say that last night's episode of "Breaking Bad" was pretty awesome. This is an epic tragedy that cannot end well. Of course, the episode ended in the middle of a gun battle between the DEA and a gang of neo-Nazi ex-cons.
Today is the most wonderful day of the year, the first Sunday of NFL football. Joan got her cup of coffee and said that she'd see me in 12 hours. I guess she doesn't expect me to watch all the post-game shows.