Shanoff's WUC: Brady, Brees, BCS, Lee, A-Rod

Tom BradyToday's Calls: Tom Brady vs. Drew Brees, Jim Zorn vs. Rex Ryan, Florida vs. Alabama, Boise State vs. TCU, Colt McCoy vs. Mark Ingram, Cliff Lee vs. Joe Blanton, Refs vs. Rabbis and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: You may pick up your jaw now. The first quarter ended innocently enough: 10-0 Pats ... ↵

↵

↵Then, the score updates at the bottom of the screen looked like a video game: 17-0 ... 24-0 ... 31-0 ... 38-0 ... 45-0 ... ↵

↵

↵— The biggest halftime lead in NFL history. (The Pats would ease off the gas in the second half enough to ensure that the Titans suffered only the worst scoreboard humiliation since before ESPN was invented, rather than threatening the mythical 73-0 from the '40 NFL title game. They could have.) ↵

↵

↵— Another record: 5 TDs in the 2nd quarter for Tom Brady. He had the best game of the season by any QB in the league — in a single half. (Hell: In a single quarter.) ↵

↵

↵This was the fan equivalent of rubbernecking a terrible highway accident. Everyone should have been talking about the Saints' convincing win over the Giants — affirming New Orleans as the best team in the NFC. ↵

↵

↵But it's like Belichick and Brady decided to take the Saints up on a game of "Can you top this?" ↵

↵

↵Let's be honest: It was a more challenging game than the Titans were willing to offer. ↵

↵

↵NFL Talking Points ↵

↵

↵— So, yes: The Saints are the NFC's best, but don't you get the sense that they better earn home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs? (Either that, or hope the Vikings earn it — whatever keeps them in a dome in January.) ↵

↵

↵— Who turned Big Ben into Drew Brees? ↵

↵

↵— Hot Seat: I woke up and Jim Zorn still wasn't fired. What gives? ↵

↵

↵— Sunday Night: For all the talk about the Falcons' offensive studs, their success is about the D. ↵

↵

↵— Still undefeated: Vikings, and it was a very quality win. (But, let's be honest: Should have lost. Not that there's anything wrong with winning those!) ↵

↵

↵— Result reminding you that you know nothing about the NFL: Raiders over Eagles. ↵

↵

↵— "Regression-to-mean" Moment: Now THAT was the Texans we thought would make the playoffs this year (and the Bengals we thought would not). ↵

↵

↵— Injury Watch: Kris Jenkins' knee. (The Jets' home loss to the Bills? Just insult on top of it.) ↵

↵

↵— Rookie Dud: Mark Sanchez (Stud: Hakeem Nicks) ↵

↵

↵— Fantasy Stud: MJD (133 yds, 3 TDs) ↵

↵

↵— Miletsones, Good: Warner tied the record for fastest QB to 30K yards ↵

↵

↵— Milestones, Bad: At what point will we consider the Rams' 16-game losing streak every bit as bad as the Lions' 0-16 season? ↵

↵

↵— MNF Tonight: Time for Broncos to stumble? ↵

↵

↵2009 BCS Standings debut: Just three teams control their own destiny — Florida and Alabama (who will, if things progress, settle it between themselves eventually) and Texas. ↵

↵

↵Boise State is No. 4: Even if the Top 3 all lose, that doesn't mean Boise steps into the Top 2: Their strength of schedule (SOS) will ultimately nick their BCS ranking. Is a BCS-level bowl assured for Boise? What if No. 8 TCU hurdles them, based on superior SOS? ↵

↵

↵(Nice to see: Unlike the human polls, the BCS composite putting USC below Cincinnati and Iowa, two teams that have made a better case on the field than USC has — start with winning the games they should have: All of 'em.) ↵

↵

↵CFB Weekend Hangover: "Style points" are dead. Just win. Neither Florida nor Texas deserved to, by the way, but legit championship contenders find a way to win the games they seemingly should lose. (Compare that to the duds from Virginia Tech and Ohio State.) ↵

↵

↵Heisman Watch: How could you have watched the Texas-Oklahoma game and still think Colt McCoy is a top contender? If I had a first-place vote in a straw poll, it would go to Alabama RB Mark Ingram. (The anti-Heisman, for the most overrated "big" talent, goes to Ohio State QB Terrelle Pryor.) ↵

↵

↵Draft Watch: If a relatively mild fall to the ground was all it took to KO Sam Bradford and his (re-)injured shoulder, what were Oklahoma coaches and doctors doing having him back on the field? Bradford would be a fool not to shut his college career down immediately. ↵

↵

↵Next Week's Game of the Week: TCU at BYU. Speaking of TCU's inevitably superior schedule strength ... I'd argue that winning at BYU in Week 8 would be better than Boise's signature win — over Oregon, but at home in Idaho in the first week of the season. ↵

↵

↵NLCS Game 3: Cliff Lee Rules. 8 IP, 0 ER, 3 H, 10 Ks, 0 BB. Wow. (And that doesn't even consider Philly's offense.) One of the most dominating postseason pitching performances of the decade, from one of the most successful midseason trade pick-ups of the decade. You know you want the Phillies to win the NLCS, because their pitching is the only thing that might possibly stop the Yankees from winning the World Series. ↵

↵

↵ALCS Game 3: Afternoon delight. After the late finish on Saturday night (not to mention the crappy NYC weather), today's (sunny) late-afternoon first pitch will be a refreshing change. Speaking of refreshing changes, how do you like A-Rod as postseason superhero, rather than goat? Still feels a bit unnatural. ↵

↵

↵MLB Hot Stove: The Padres' GM search is fascinating. This weekend, they interviewed Kim Ng, who would be — and, no matter how this goes, will be — the first female GM in MLB history. But they are also eyeing Theo Epstein's right-hand guy, Jed Hoyer. ↵

↵

↵NBA Preseason: The next time an NBA coach gets ejected from a game, I'd really like to see a rabbi come down from the stands to mediate the situation. (Sorry: Again.) ↵

↵

↵SN NBA Countdown: No. 10 Hornets. In Chris Paul, they have arguably the most valuable player in the league (or at least the West). But they seemingly have no chance to advance beyond the first round of the playoffs. Where's the progress? (Read Bethlehem Shoals.) ↵

↵

↵CBB: SN's Top 25 countdown has started. 25: Cincy. 24: FSU. 23: Michigan. (Boo! Shoulda been Northwestern. Be bold!) Catch up here. ↵

↵

↵Midnight Madness in review: Yes, it was the John Wall Show in Lexington. Even those of us who loathe Kentucky basketball can be intrigued at just how spectacular this kid is going to be. ↵

↵

↵The Last Word: So I'm back from my first trip to Vegas. The sports book experience was fascinating and completely changed my appreciation of game-watching, sometimes not for the better. (For the record, I bookended success with Cincy and Georgia Tech — and an ironic "win" for me in a Northwestern loss — with a battering of bad picks all day long. Oh, and that Texas-Oklahoma push: Meh.) ↵

↵

↵Special thanks to the organizers and participants at the Blogs With Balls 2.0 conference for making it such a terrific few days. ↵

↵

↵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. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/danshanoff. ↵

↵

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

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.