Shanoff's Wake-Up Call: DeSean Jackson Steals T.O. Touchdown Show in Big D

Today's Calls: DeSean Jackson vs. T.O., Red Sox vs. Rays, Ed Hochuli vs. the NFL, Justin Roper vs. USC, Mets vs. Oblivion and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: Who was most impressive last night on Monday Night Football? T.O.? Westbrook? Felix Jones? ↵

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↵It has to be DeSean Jackson, whose bone-headed non-TD (dropping the ball before the goal line to start celebrating) was absurdly amazing. ↵

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↵(Making it all the more awesome, this isn't the first time Jackson has let his showboating get in the way of the plane of the goal line.) ↵

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↵How irked do you think T.O. is that even though he scored 2 TDs (taking over 2nd-place on the all-time TD-reception list) and even though his team won, Jackson is getting all the highlights? ↵

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↵MLB: Has the clock struck midnight for the Cinderella Rays? ↵

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↵Their lead in the AL East is gone, swatted away like any of the 6 HR that the Red Sox clubbed while thumping the Rays in St. Pete. ↵

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↵Their imperviousness at home might be gone, too: The Sox finally won at the Trop in '08 (though Tampa still clings to MLB's best home record.) ↵

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↵But is their playoff mojo gone? As I have argued all month, the Rays have no need to panic. ↵

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↵The Sox surge was inevitable, and the most important thing for the Rays is not to win the division title, but to make the playoffs, period. ↵

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↵And, right now, the Rays are still up 7 on the Twins for the Wild Card, with 14 games to play (including 4 at home vs. the Twins this weekend). ↵

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↵Brewers DO panic: Motivation tactic or panic attack? History will be the judge: If the Brewers make the playoffs, this was brilliant; if they don't... well, they probably weren't going to with Ned Yost, anyway. ↵

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↵NFL's Hochuli Scandal: He might not be suspended for his egregious mistake in the Chargers-Broncos game, but Ed Hochuli will earn poor grades for his work on Sunday. If it keeps him out of the playoffs, it's no worse than the fate he left for the Chargers. ↵

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↵There might be some good to come of this error: The league says it is going to look into changing the rules to allow for plays like Sunday's to be reviewable. ↵

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↵(They could also tell refs to swallow their whistles an extra second on possible fumbles -- I'm sure the refs are all aware. No one wants to be Hochuli'ed.) ↵

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↵NFL Hot Seats: Hey, look at that! Lane Kiffin is still coach of the Raiders. So: Who had "Week 3" in the office pool? ↵

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↵Um, did Jeff Fisher have a choice of QBs? Because this makes it sound like he did. ↵

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↵NFL Must-Read: Mike Florio's 10-pack. ↵

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↵CFB: Oregon QB Justin Roper is out 2-4 weeks. And, naturally, the Ducks play USC on the road in 3 weeks. ↵

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↵Not that Oregon had much of a chance. But it underscores the point that USC's schedule -- including Ohio State -- isn't particularly challenging. ↵

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↵Might that cost them a shot at the BCS title game? I think so. Check back tomorrow for a theory as to why USC-to-BCS isn't a done-deal. ↵

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↵More injuries: East Carolina lost veteran LB Quentin Cotton for the season, with a game at NC State looming this weekend. ↵

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↵More MLB: NL Playoff Push! If the Mets are going to lose to the Nationals down the stretch, they don't deserve to make the playoffs ... I know Pujols is the obvious choice, but I hope Manny gets some 2nd-place NL MVP votes ... And, all of a sudden, the Cubs pitching is untouchable ... ↵NASCAR: If Kyle Busch doesn't win the Chase (as it already looks like he won't), how big of a choke-job is that in NASCAR history, given Busch's dominant regular season? ↵CBB: No Kenny George next season? Say it ain't so! ↵

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↵The Last Word: Ah, Chris Cooley, no apologies necessary for your full-frontal star turn on the Web. We've all been there. (Um ... right? No? Oh.) ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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