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Charlie Goes Ice Skating

Last night I had some free time away from Chowdaheadz so I decided to go Ice Skating.

I was not very good at it unfortunately as I lacked the strength in my tiny legs and my tongue kept getting stuck to the ice.

I am not sure that ice skating is for me, like many other activities made for humans.

Pagliuca for Senate?

Celtics Co-Owner is Now in the Running

Sports and politics don’t mix. First it was Curt Schilling (although he nixed the idea on the HBO show “Joe Buck Live” last night). And now, Steve Pagliuca? The co-owner of the Boston Celtics announced last Thursday at the TD Garden that he would enter the race for the late U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy’s seat in Congress. Pagliuca will run as a Democrat.

With the 2009-2010 NBA Season on the horizon and the Senate race heating up, what will this mean for the Celtics going forward? Danny Ainge and Wyc Grousbeck don’t seem to be worried; they appear to have confidence in Pagliuca. Grousbeck told the Boston Herald, “He’d give 100% to the state.” In the back of their minds though, they must be thinking this is an off court distraction waiting to happen. Let’s just hope basketball is focus when the season starts.

Wake N’ See

Wakefield’s Status Still Uncertain In 2009

There aren’t many 43-year-olds in the Major Leagues and there aren’t many knuckleball pitchers in baseball.  All in all, their aren’t many Tim Wakefield’s in the Major League Baseball.  For the Boston Red Sox, Wakefield is a luxury and not a necessity at this point in his Red Sox career. 

Each pitch that Wakefield throws from here on out is a gift for both the 43-year-old and Red Sox organization.  A godsend since arriving from the Pittsburgh Pirates, Wake is the oldest tenured Red Sox. He was here for the days that New York dominated all of baseball, and he was there on the mound for the 2003 nightmare.  He’s been through Kevin Kennedy, Jimy Williams, Joe Kerrigan, and Grady Little. Oh and did I forget to mention Aaron bleeping Boone?  He was also there for 2004, the reverse of the 86 year old  curse, and he was there for the unforgettable 2007 championship.  So now, in the current 2009 season, Wakefield is still here.  

But he is wary.  The knuckleballer threw five innings in Monday’s 12-9 loss to the Kansas City Royals and will not be pitching every five days according to Red Sox manager Terry Francona.  So what does the future hold for iron-man Tim Wakefield?

No one can be certain.  But the guy has been steady as a proverbial rock for over a decade now.  He embodies the dirtdog, cowboy, and dedicated Sox player that all of Red Sox Nation adorns.  He was the guy who gave up his Game 4 start in the 2004 ALCS to eat up innings in the Game 3 shellacking the Yankees handed the Sox.  He is a selfless warrior that puts the team over himself.  So maybe for the first time in his career, Wakefield should not be sacrificed.  Maybe even with a injured back and leg, the Red Sox should let ole’ Wake have his moment in 2009.  Just one more ride around the rodeo.

Because it may be his last.  

The 43-year-old most certainly will need surgery in the offseason and everyone knows old bones don’t heal fast.  Wakefield may be forced to hang up the cleats at the end of this season, so its now up to Francona and the Red Sox brass to make sure that he does it in style, or atleast Wakefield style.

With good ole’ fashion respect.  And a good ole’ dip of the knuckleball.

Added Depth, Will It Help?

Patriots Add Depth To Linebacking Core

With a serious need to address one of their weaknesses, the New England Patriots acquired linebacker Prescott Burgess from the Baltimore Ravens in hopes of shoring up a depleted and thin linebacker position. 

The Patriots, in exchange for Burgess, sent a conditional seventh-round draft choice.  The former University of Michigan grad enters his third season in the NFL and has appeared in 10 career NFL games, all with the Ravens.  Burgess, who stands at 6-foot-3, 247 lbs, will join the likes of Gary Guyton, Adalius Thomas, Eric Alexander, Tully Banta-Cain, and Pierre Woods as the other linebackers on the 53-man roster looking to make up for Jerod Mayo’s absence.

The absence of Mayo, who is sidelined for six to eight weeks with a sprained right medical collateral ligament, forces the Patriots to move towards a 4-3 scheme and this past sunday a base 4-2-5 defensive lineup.  Burgess has never started a game in the NFL but has had enormous upside since being recruited by Michigan.  New England hopes that due to an abundance of linebackers in Baltimore, Burgess can thrive in a new situation with the Patriots who so desperately need help at the linebacking position.  

The Need To Trade Kessel Was Evident

Bruins Forced To Move Young Talent

Sometimes things just don’t work out.  That’s exactly what happened between the Boston Bruins and Phil Kessel this offseason as the Bruins sent the 21-year-old right-winger to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for a first-and-second-round draft picks in 2010, and a first-round pick in 2011.  The Leafs in return, signed the talented scorer to a five-year $27 million deal.  

Kessel has a ton of upside offensively but proved to be a bit to pricy for the B’s to retain this season especially with the likes of Aaron Ward and other free agents coming back to the Hub.  Many believe that Kessel was a product of a good offense and line-mate in Marc Savard and that he was overrated, even with 36 goals in 70 games.  What cannot be disputed is that the B’s and Kessel didn’t develop a long-lasting agreement and relationship that could’ve kept the 21-year-old in Boston for the long run. 

Sox Trumped By Royals

Boston & Wakefield Stumble In Kansas City

For the first time in two weeks, Tim Wakefield took the hill for the Boston Red Sox and the Red Sox wounded knuckleballer couldn’t seem to get the ball rolling in the right direction as the 42-year-old surrendered five runs off of five hits and seven walks through five innings of work.

The bullpen didn’t fare much better for the local nine as Manny Delcarmen and Daniel Bard combined to give up six runs in just one inning of work.  The Kansas City Royals trailed by four runs heading into the sixth inning but put up a six spot on the scoreboard to soar past the Red Sox 12-9 on Monday night.  Victor Martinez extended his hit streak to 20 games as Martinez, Dustin Pedroia, Jason Bay, and Rocco Baldelli all tallied two hits for Boston.  

The hit brigade, however, couldn’t muster a comeback when they needed in the later innings as the Sox fall for only the second time in their last 12 games.  It doesn’t get easier for Boston heading into Tuesday’s matchup at KC as they are scheduled to face Cy Young candidate Zack Grienke, throwing journeymen Paul Byrd out their against the Royals young pitching phenom.

(AP Photo) (AP Photo)

Patriots Week 2 Loss V.S. Jets -(Amsey 5)

Amsey 5- Creativity need not apply
1) Two words.  Screen Pass.  Not the Wes Welker errrrrrrrrrrr Julian Edelman bubble screen that averaged 3 yards per catch today but a true to form screen pass. The Jets were blitzing the bejesus out of the Patriots and unless I was zapped by the Men In Black movie mind erasing device, I didn’t see a single one.  The Jets brought 7 and 8 consistently.   The only way to make it stop is throw a screen pass. Oh by the way, we have one of the best in the business out of the backfield in Kevin Faulk. I may not always be spot on but in this instance I am absolutely right. This is why they lost the game today. The Jets defense played great but the Patriots had no creativity in countering the onslaught. Brady threw 50% of his passes today on the run or off of his back foot. Not exactly the prototypical throwing style that we’ve come to know and love from him.
2) Running back by committee flat out doesn’t work.  Why? Why do it? Why not stick with Taylor on first and second down and Faulk on 3rd down. Let Maroney do kick off retuns (poorly) and Morris do special teams and back up Taylor if he needs a break. To bring in running backs at random times doesn’t allow for any of them to get into the flow of the game. To see what the defense is doing. To see who is tiring on the defensive side of the ball. It is flat out inane.
3) I am thoroughly impressed with the play of Mike Wright. He is no Richard Seymour but he comes on the cheap. To be an un-drafted free agent from Cincinnati and become a starter in the NFL is very impressive. However one area of major improvement for him is to get off the ball when it is snapped. If anyone has DVR’d the atrocity that we witnessed today, go back and watch all of the defensive snaps that he is in for.  Wilfork is off like dart and Wright is delayed getting up and going. It may be only a split second, but in the NFL, that split second allows the offensive lineman to get off the ball and downfield on a running play or get his back pedaling going for a passing play. For examples see Exhibit A, Jets running game today.  He plays with heart but now he’s got to play quicker. 
4) 9 minutes to go 3rd and short and the Patriots run a strung out running play to the short side of the field. I don’t even have a pun or insight to provide here. I just find it absolutely insane to try that play without a pure speed back.   The Jets line got fantastic push and yet another Patriots drive was stopped dead in its’ tracks.
5) The formation that I want to see forever is 4 wide.  Edelman and Welker in the slots. Moss and Galloway (or someone with a pair of hands and knows which routes to run and knows what Brady is thinking and doing) on the outside.  With Fred Taylor in the backfield for first and second down and Kevin Faulk for 3rd down.  With those 4 outside, you need to have at least 1 safety rolling to Moss’ side of the field. Assuming man coverage, a team couldn’t send more then 6 rushers against 6 blockers. Welker always gets open. Edelman proved that he can too.  Let’s show this formation a bit next week against a tough Atlanta team
BONUS points)
a) From a positive note, at least we didn’t have to listen to Phil Simms today
b) More from the glass half full department: Gostkowski is my fantasy kicker
c) Pat Chung made a huge impact on the game today.  Meanwhile in Green Bay Ray Malaluga was a beast. No, I won’t let this go. 
d) For those of you not fortunate enough to have the Sunday Ticket Super Nerd errr Fan package, I was lucky to see something none of the rest of you will. When Chad Ochodicko scored his touchdown, he found some Bengal fans to leap into the stands.  Nearby Packer fans wisely flipped the camera the bird, thereby rendering the shot useless for the public to see. Good job taking the camera off the idiot and back on the field.  What is not known is whether or not the fan was ejected. He  should have been given a suite.
e) Sanchez is the real deal. Take the training wheels off the kid.
f) I can’t believe that Kerry Rhodes was right. The Jets did embarrass the Patriots today.
g) Did Jets fans really start a Brady sucks chant?  3 Super Bowls in nine years VS. the last significant win in Jets franchise history was Super Bowl 3.  Typical New York class.

Jets Fans Are Really Annoying!

First off, the Jets played a great game.  They are a team on the right track, between a much improved defense, a young QB that has talent, and a coach that seems to know how to think outside the box on the field.  So hats off to the Jets and looking forward to watching them this season. I hope they choke at the hands of the Patriots but I think it’s pretty foolish to not recognize that they are for real.  With that said I have to shift to another direction, Jet’s Fans.

-You have the overfed groups of 4 guys with their stomachs painted (how cliche)
-The over abundance of halloween customers (I saw someone wearing a gorilla mask)
-The idiot guy (below) that thinks he is doing a Broadway Show every home game. I bet he records every game so he can see himself on TV.

It is just too much for me to handle.  They might be the most annoying fans in all of sports and this isn’t because I am sour from a loss yesterday. I said in the first paragraph that the team is legit and we may have our hands full with them but their fans are enough to just hate the team all together.

So I ask all you fellow Chowdaheadz out there that know a Jets fan to begin tormenting them. Pillage their homes, steal their wallets, graffiti their autos, and take it to the next level because they need to be stopped before this gets out of hand.

New England A Little Jetlagged…

Patriots Stumble At The Meadowlands

(AP Photo) (AP Photo)


Tom Brady and the New England Patriots may not have been “embarrassed” by Kerry Rhodes and company, but the Pats were defeated by the New York Jets at the Meadowlands for the first time in nine years as the Jets (2-0) beat the Pats (1-1) 16-9 on Sunday.  

Mark Sanchez impressed Bill Belichick and an undermanned Pats squad, finishing up with a scoreline of 14-for-22 for 163 yards and a touchdown.  Sanchez heated up in the second half, leading the Jets to TD in the third quarter and a field goal in the fourth as Brady and the offense were shut out in the second half, handing TB his first loss in 22 regular season starts and ending New England’s streak of scoring a touchdown in every game since Dec. 10 2006 at Miami, which was Brady’s last loss in the regular season.  

Both Wes Welker and Jerod Mayo were inactive for Sunday’s game, forcing Julian Edelman to step up in place of Welker, and Gary Guyton and Pierre Woods to fill in for Mayo.  Edelman caught eight passes for 98 yards, followed by Joey Galloway who had five receptions for 53 yards.  Brady, 23-for-47 for 216 yards, went without a score and threw one pick as the Patriots air attack was stymied once inside the red zone.  

The Patriots will look to get back in synch next week as the Atlanta Falcons come to Foxoborough as Matt Ryan and the 2-0 Falcons come into New England fresh off a 28-20 victory over the Carolina Panthers.   

Sox Sweep Lowly O’s

Red Sox Inch Closer To Wildcard Spot

Daisuke Matsuzaka allowed three runs and eight hits through 5 1/3 innings in route to his second straight victory since returning from the DL as the Boston Red Sox completed a sweep of the Baltimore Orioles with a 9-3 victory on Sunday at Camden Yards.

Victor Martinez extended his hit streak to 19 games as the Boston first-basemen went 2-for-4 on the day with a run and RBI.  Jacoby Ellsbury and Jason Bay each had a home run as both players drove in three runs for the Sox, who now have won 10 of their last 11 games.  Bay now has 35 home runs with a career-high 110 RBI’s.  

Matsuzaka’s victory improved Boston’s road record to an even 37-37 as the Japanese right-hander has looked good since returning from the DL.  Boston heads to Kansas City on Monday as the local nine square off against the Royals as Tim Wakefield makes his first start in two weeks against old-friend Lenny DiNardo.  The Sox are now seven wins, or Texas Rangers losses, away from clinching the wildcard. Boston also trails the New York Yankees by only five games now as the two rivals are set to face each other one more time in the Bronx for a three game-set next weekend.

(AP Photo) (AP Photo)

Poll Question: Who Will Win The Pats/Jets Game?

Submit Your Answers In The Comment Section Below

A) The Patriots Will Win, But A Nail-Bitter, By Less Than A Touchdown.

B) The Jets Will Win, In A Close Contest, With Mark Sanchez Leading The Charge.

C) The Patriots Will Win, A Blowout At The Meadowlands, As Belichick Confuses the Rookie Quarterback and Brady Shakes Off All The Rust.

D) The Jets Will Win, Rhodes & Company Will “Embarrass” The Pats, As The Jets Hand New England It’s First Loss Of The Season.

Let Us Know What You Think!