There are disturbances in The Force.
I am disturbed. I must play with the settings on this damn crystal ball to figure it all out. I must fix this thing. It's weird - I saw none of this coming:
- Tim Couch looks like the best quarterback in the NFL.
- The Tampa Bay defense looks as a tough as a bunny.
- The new Schwarzenegger action flick had an opening scene starring some dull loser named Grey Davis and it aired on all the news channels, greatly confusing me.
I must fix it. I must, I must…
Oh no! Now I've dropped it. I can't see the immediate future, but I inexplicably can see 11 years further – a presidential race between a rock star and a star athlete, and I think I see myself voting for Bruce Springsteen over Michael Jordan, only because every speech could be a new song. I believe in the Promised Land.
Oddly, I only see one football-specific thing 11 years in the future – the Bengals still suck.
And now, er, ug, goldang it!
Phew! There, now I have my crystal ball back to its normal, once-a-week tuning. But wait. Tim Couch still looks like a great quarterback. Now that's really weird.
RAIDERS AT BROWNS – This is the time for banishing ghosts. Last week, the evilest Steelers were pulverized and this week the eviler Raiders will be utterly destroyed. And Tim Couch continues his historic resurrection. People begin to talk of him as a candidate. In fact, as he completes a third down and 14 pass in the fourth quarter, more than one political consultant sees it as a statement on the need for lower taxes and better health care. Speaking of health care, the Raiders begin speaking of health care. Browns 35, Raiders 12.
CHIEFS AT PACKERS – While returning yet another kickoff, Dante Hall pulls a rabbit out of his helmet on the 30-yard-line and then in the end zone he fits a square peg into a round hole just because everybody says it is impossible. Chiefs 26, Packers 20.
DOLPHINS AT JAGUARS – Ricky Williams becomes part of the AMTRAK line. Dolphins 23, Jaguars 10.
BYE AT BENGALS – Proving to be the smartest of all Bengals' coaches, Marvin Lewis reconsiders and refuses to take the Bengals' coaching job that he has already started. It's different than quitting, its' sort of like a coaching annulment. Never happened.
BEARS AT SAINTS – Mike Ditka at different times coached each of these horrible teams. Now Mike Ditka sells a drug that helps with impotence. So what is a metaphor? Saints 20, Bears 19.
EAGLES AT COWBOYS – Will the person who thinks Bill Parcells cannot coach please stand up and be laughed at. Cowboys 27, Eagles 10.
PANTHERS AT COLTS – Just like the last Colts' game, this is defense versus offense only this Panthers defense doesn't quit with four minutes to go. Still, this Colts offense hasn't quit anything yet. Colts 24, Panthers 21.
BYE AT LIONS – Steve Marriuci is reminded that Lions, like Bengals, are Midwest cats. Quietly, he researches the concept of coaching annulment.
GIANTS AT PATRIOTS – This is one of the most interesting games of the week. Kerry Collins is better than you think he is. Giants 27, Patriots 15.
TEXANS AT TITANS – On any given Sunday, a really good team can beat a pretty bad team. Titans 24, Texans 10.
BUCCANEERS AT REDSKINS – In the past minute, I scored two touchdowns on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense. I just did it again. So did you. It's easy! Redskins 32, Buccaneers 20.
BYE AT VIKINGS – Randy Moss chills because unlike the foolish pogo dance of Warren Sapp, when Moss jumps, he catches touchdown passes. No need to jump this weekend. Gus Frerrote spends the week with a private detective trying to track down his lucky stars in order to thank them.
STEELERS AT BRONCOS – Tommy Maddox goes back to where he started his career with a big decision to make – should he change his first name to Bubby or to Kordell. Broncos 23, Steelers 7.
49ERS AT SEAHAWKS – A quiz: When Terrell Owens is upset…complete this sentence. Um, I guess this: he is awake. 49ers 18, Seahawks 16.
FALCONS AT RAMS – Mike Martz dreams that he puts Kurt Warner's wife at quarterback and she gets sacked by 13 Falcons at once. When he awakes, it is noted that this is the first time he has ever smiled. Rams 29, Falcons 21.
BYE AT CHARGERS – The bad news is that you are on a football team that sucks. The good news is that you are a millionaire in San Diego where no one cares all that much. Dude!
RAVENS AT CARDINALS – Jamal Lewis gains some yards. Ravens 22, Cardinals 10.
BILLS AT JETS – Herman Edwards is one of the best coaches about to be fired that you will ever see. Bills 27, Jets 9.
New England in a Red Sox October is a place that Shakespeare dreamt of, and yes, the curse does exist. It is palpable – an in-the-air feeling of optimistic dread that is almost sorrowful except that it's sort of funny.
Now again, the Cuckoos Nest of hope has come home to roost. I have children, friends, and neighbors investing their hearts. And I admit that the Red Sox are my second favorite baseball team. So please, root along with me, Cleveland, for Manny Ramirez and Alan Embree. You won't regret it. (Well, you probably will.)
At least root against the Yankees. I know you can do that.
But what's gonna happen is that the Red Sox are going to beat the Yankees and then lose in some ridiculous dramatic way to the Cubs in the ninth inning of the seventh game of the World Series, multiplying the pain in a mind-boggling way.
This column was sponsored by the Committee to Prevent Sponsorship of Internet Columns.
Brian Tarcy collaborated with Hap Klopp on THE ADVENTURE OF LEADERSHIP; An Unorthodox Business Guide. Ken Blanchard, author of THE ONE MINUTE MANAGER said of THE ADVENTURE OF LEADERSHIP, "This book is an inspiration. Read it." Klopp is the founder of The North Face, maker of quality outdoor gear.