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Quick Inside Slant: The Preseason

Impressions of the 2012 NFL Season as perceived by a Creative Writing graduate student, part-time amateur stand-up comedian and collegiate intramural flag football legend.

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Aaron Hernandez

The Year in Review

My brother just returned from his year-long contract mining Helium-3 on the moon last night. I know what you’re thinking. “HOLY CRAP! I DIDN’T KNOW DUSTIN HAD A BROTHER!”* As the solar wind flares prevented him from receiving a live video feed from earth, he was unable to keep up with the goings on in the NFL. So it was up to me to fill him in on the year that was.

He believed me by and large, as I don’t often lie, but questioned whether or not I had myself received one of those fancy concussions that are all the rage these days. I assured him that I did not. All this stuff REALLY HAPPENED. A quick Google search proved the validity of my claims. And unfortunately, there’s nothing higher than Google to check for its validity, so he had to believe me.

Anyway, here are the Top 5 facts he had the most trouble believing, in order of how many times he said “No way!”

  1. Aaron Hernandez allegedly killed a guy or two. Sure, he has yet to be convicted and publicly proclaimed his innocence in a hand-written note using a lot of swear words, but a few grainy surveillance photos are proof enough for me. Besides, I’ve seen more contrition in a sack of potatoes. He doesn’t even seem to be aware that he’s on trial for having KILLED A MAN. Riley Cooper almost broke down in tears twice for saying a bad word. This guy allegedly KILLED A MAN. Maybe two.
  2. Joe Flacco is the highest paid NFL player ever. Well it’s not true now, but it was for about 47 minutes before the NFL remembered that Aaron Rodgers still exists. But for those glorious 47 minutes, Joe Uncool, the most unmarketable quarterback in the league, was the NFL’s highest paid player EVER. It’s of some consolation that Drew Brees will actually net more money after taxes, but either way, these are still amounts of money that I will never even be able to understand.
  3. The NFC West is the toughest division in the NFL. Remember the days when you could just pencil in Matt Hassellbeck’s Seahawks to win the division every year at 7-9, spawning the discussion about whether or not they deserved to host a playoff game? Yeah, well that’s SO 2011. They poached the two best coaches from the Pac-12 and stole Jeff Fisher from Tennessee. Heck, even Arizona was 5-0 at one point last year and they didn’t even use a quarterback. So that whole strategy of picking against them in the office suicide pool isn’t gonna work anymore.
  4. Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson are AWESOME. People questioned whether or not these two would even be average among their peers when the season started. Not only did they compete for Comeback Player of the Year, but also for MVP. So, in conclusion, Peyton and A.D. are SPECTACULARLY AND CLINICALLY AWESOME. We told this to our other brother who was up there for two years and he seemed confused as to why this was news.
  5. The read option is back! Yep. The offense that colleges run when they don’t have anybody who can throw the football on their team has found a home in the NFL. And boy did it make a lot of lucky coaches look brilliant. Until this year when defenses have it figured out and all those brilliant coaches get fired. But it was fun while it lasted.

Also, it turns out that it’s not so cold up on the moon as you’d think. And so far as I can tell from the pictures, they have good tapas bars and nude beaches there too. I’m starting to think maybe he was just in Barcelona.

* – While he only exists in my mind when convenient and at random times, I do have a brother.

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Dustin Fisher is an amateur standup comedian, storyteller, freelance writer, and stay-at-home dad, all of which are just better ways of saying “unemployed.” He worked in the area of collegiate recreation for the previous 14 years at UMBC, Miami University and the University of Baltimore. There, he became somewhat of a folk legend on the flag football field and actually got paid to play fantasy football. Dustin is currently in the MFA program at the University of Baltimore seeking a Masters degree in Creative Writing. He has made contributions to various publications including The Good Men Project and the Baltimore Fishbowl. For more about Dustin, check out his stay-at-home dad website, Daddy Needs a Nap. Dustin lives with his wife and daughter in New Carrollton, MD in a house surrounded by too many trees to get the Dish Network.

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