Tuesday Morning Quarterback (wk. 3)
Week three in the 2005 season may well be remembered as 'the day the music died' for NFL fans in New York. (Jets) QB Chad Pennington's season, and quite possibly his career, came to an end with MRI results of a torn rotator cuff. I say career, because no NFL QB has ever had the shoulder issues Chad has and returned to form. What's worse, the Jets brought in Jay Fiedler as an insurance policy for Chad's recurring shoulder issues, and 6 plays after Pennington went down, Fiedler joined him on the training table with a separated right shoulder. Brooks Bollinger (Who?) is next. In the last 24 hours there has been a mass exodus of folks from the Jets bandwagon. (Bills) The loss of LB Takeo Spikes for the season to a torn Achilles takes the inspirational leader of the team off the field. For a team that has played some pretty spirited defense, someone needs to step up. (Giants) Thankfully there isn't a season ending injury on the Giants' report, but after they surrendered nearly 500 yards to San Diego, 260 of it on the ground, you'd think there were 11 limping defenders, wouldn't you? Some kind of explanation is needed.
The Eagles got an 'un-kicker-like' performance out of David Akers on Sunday. It's destined to become a TV movie... "Rudy... Rudy..." Kickers have had a bad reputation with football fans ever since the late 1970's when a pudgy, Argentinean born, Houston Oilers kicker named Toni Fritcsh was regularly spotted sitting on the sideline downing a few cans of beer between kicking duties. Those soccer guys! For several seasons it was rumored they actually paid the man in beer. Well Akers gave his team his all, and it likely will cost. Word is it is a slight tear in his hamstring. What does 'slight' have to do with the word 'tear'? The injury wards are filling up!
Cheers for week 3: Cadillac Williams, whose three straight 100+ yard games give him the fastest start for any rookie runningback. Donovan McNabb for a gutsy performance against Oakland, dealing with a painful sternum injury sustained in week 2. And the football player David Akers... "Rudy... Rudy..." My hero of the week: Brooks Bollinger (Who?) the 3rd year QB out of Wisconsin who has thrown 9 passes in his NFL career. He becomes the Jets' starter this week. I make him my hero now, because the Jets' fans will likely martyr him in the next few weeks.
Jeers for week 3: Eagles coach Andy Reid for not having activated kicker Todd France from the practice squad last week. What were you thinking coach? Titans RB Travis Henry who flunked a controlled substance test and will be suspended for four games. It must have been that weekend at Ricky Williams' house, eh? And I'll add Ricky Williams, who will miss his fourth and final game in his suspension this week. My goat of the week: Me! Shamelessly gloating about my 13-1 win/loss record this week. Did you catch that? Thirteen and one! THIRTEEN AND ONE! Look for my prognosticating powers to be put to the test in week 4... in this space on Thursday.
On a serious note - Toni Fritsch was an Argentinean Soccer star who was pursued by Dallas Cowboys President Gil Brandt in the early 1970's to become one of the first 'soccer-style' kickers in the NFL. Toni played for Dallas, Houston, and New Orleans during what was a long and successful career. Toni Fritsch died at the age of 60, September 13th of a heart attack.