Sunday School: Which Terribly-Made Game-Time Food Is Your NFL Team?

OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 25: Darren McFadden #20 of the Oakland Raiders celebrates against the New York Jets at Coliseum on September 25, 2011 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

On Sunday the Raiders were great, the Rams were terrible, and your incompetent but well-meaning friend forgot to buy chips with the salsa and offered you a spoon instead. "It's basically the same," he said. "Atkins diet!"

Light beer companies have about... five memes that they recycle in commercials over and over and over on NFL Sundays. One is, "let's have an NFL Films narrative some guy doing a commonplace activity!" Three of them are different variations on, "women everywhere are horrible and I wish none of them were ever born!" And one, which is the one I'd like to address today, is,"let's throw the ultimate party, dudes!"

Thanks to a miniature Jim Mora and Herm Edwards, we saw a lot of "let's throw the ultimate party, dudes!" (known herein as LTtUPD) commercials on Sunday. They communicate the idea that everyone can and should throw a killer party, and God, this is such a dangerous idea to communicate. They see a Coors Light commercial, they buy Coors Light and baby back ribs at the store, and after a rabble of Google searches such as "how to make ribs" and "how to make ribs in 10 minutes" and "ribs in microwave?" and "ribs smoky flavor microwave??? how," they are on their way, and they are going to invite you to this party, and it is going to be the worst party.

In this spirit, let's rate the quality of each team's Sunday performance during Week 3, in terms of food served by your completely incompetent but well-meaning friend during football games.

THE OAKLAND RAIDERS ON SUNDAY: Won vs. Jets, 34-24. The Jets' fearsome secondary compels opponents to place more emphasis on the run, so that's what the Raiders did, and the result was 171 yards (nine per carry) from Darren McFadden. I enjoy hanging my predictions on incomplete, shallow logic, so I'll have a go: the Raiders will win the AFC West on account of how strong and fast Darren McFadden is. Corollary: he is so strong and fast that you would not believe how strong and fast he is.

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Pizza delivery. This is the safest option, and the one that allows the fewest opportunities for your friend to screw up. But he/she does anyway by a) carrying it sideways into the kitchen and b) attempting to cut slices with a dull paring knife. You know he/she has never ever used a paring knife for its intended purpose, so how is it dull? Pizza slicing, mostly, but a little bit of banana-opening too. Unopened bananas and your friend have never quite seen eye-to-eye, you see.

THE BALTIMORE RAVENS ON SUNDAY: Won at Rams, 37-7. It could have been far uglier, as the Rams managed to hold the Ravens to three short-ish field goals in the second half. Ravens rookie wide receiver Torrey Smith caught three touchdown passes in the first quarter alone. He didn't see a ton of action after that, probably because he was promptly flown to the White House to shake hands with the President. "With that sort of success, you could sit in my chair someday," the President said, to which Smith replied, "yes, but what I have just done, you will never, ever do." The President was later noticed in the Rose Garden, sitting on a bench, head in his hands.

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Frozen pizza. Burnt a little bit, since he likes it that way. His opinions on frozen pizza are far more strong and numerous than any opinion anyone should ever have about frozen pizza. He/she even uses (invents?) vernacular specific to the subculture of frozen pizza enthusiasm. As you bite through the bitter, charred crust, you will hear words such as "crustburn," "mouthfeel," "pepperoni placement," and "topping shift."

THE BUFFALO BILLS ON SUNDAY: Won vs. Patriots, 34-31. I'm sure I don't have to convince you that the Bills are a likable team. They're perennial losers, they beat a heavy favorite, and their quarterback has a big beard. That's all it takes, really, because this is the Internet. ("Quarterback has a big beard" is like 75 percent of that, by the way.)

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Buffalo (lol!!!!) wings picked up from a nearby bar. There are more wings than everyone can eat, and your friend remarks that he/she "can just make a sandwich with them tomorrow." What? Well, this is the same friend who has typed into a wobbly keyboard for the last three years because one of the stands on the underside isn't flipped out. "Gosh," he/she says in frustration every 20 seconds. "Gosh!" Tomorrow your friend is going to eat a sandwich with bones in it and that's just how it's going to be.

THE TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS ON SUNDAY: Won vs. Falcons, 16-13. Tampa Bay isn't a great team, but they did a great job of completely shutting down Atlanta's running game. A four-yard reception was recorded by a gentleman named Kregg Lumpkin. I bet even his mom is like, "haha, shut up, that is so not your name."

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Bratwursts. Good call, as they are almost impossible to mess up. Your friend serves them on white bread and does not have any mustard, but somehow has three different brands of ketchup. You watch as your friend squirts soggy, transparent plasma out of an old unshaken bottle of ketchup and directly on his/her bratwurst and just does not care at all. 

THE NEW ORLEANS SAINTS ON SUNDAY: Won vs. Texans, 40-33. After being shut down in early, Drew Brees drove the Saints down the field for 23 fourth-quarter points. Five different Saints netted 50 or more receiving yards. The Texans' Arian Foster didn't start, ostensibly because his hamstring was acting up, but this guy is tweeting things like, "Critiquing a writing is like critiquing a cloud." If I were his coach I would list him as injured, give "bad tweet" as the reason, and require him to wear a cast on his arm.

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Chips and salsa. At the store, your friend insisted he/she "has tons of chips at home." In truth, your friend has five of six bags of stale crumbs, and he/she responds by suggesting everyone just eat salsa out of the jar with spoons. "It's basically the same thing without the carbs," says your friend, who adds, "Atkins diet."

THE DETROIT LIONS ON SUNDAY: Won at Vikings, 26-23, OT. I would like to announce in an official capacity that since my actual team, the Chiefs, has declined to play football this season, my bandwagon team is the Lions. They are 3-0 for the first time in 31 years, they have exciting players, and they are likable. Moreover, my feeling on the matter is that if you aren't a bandwagon, fairweather fan, you are probably a total sucker.

EQUIVALENT FOOD SERVED BY YOUR INCOMPETENT BUT WELL-MEANING FRIEND: Absolutely nothing. Which, given the miserable subject of these power rankings, is pretty damn good. Nothing but horrors after this.


  • Giants (won at Eagles, 29-16): Burnt popcorn.
  • Packers (won at Bears, 27-17): Waffles, which your friend somehow has plenty of despite not owning a toaster or toaster oven. Your friend instructs you to microwave it by hitting the button on the microwave with the handwritten label, "WAFFLES!!!"
  • Titans (won at Broncos, 17-14): Those little Italian sausages encased in brine that you see in convenience stores next to the beef jerky. Your friend somehow has dozens of them, purchased individually.
  • Steelers (won at Colts, 23-20): Burgers that crumbled apart on the grill and hastily mashed together to form what your friend claims is "the world's biggest burger." "Someone call the Guinness!" your friend says, insisting you take a photo of it because your friend's phone does not have a camera.
  • Panthers (won vs. Jaguars, 16-10): Salted toast.
  • Browns (won vs. Dolphins, 17-16): On the kitchen counter, you and the other guests find uncooked chicken breast and an assortment of incompatible ingredients, such as grapes, chocolate, mayonnaise, and cinnamon. Beaming, your friend declares in an overcompensating British accent, "I am Master Chef. Welcome to my Master Chef-themed party! You have 60 minutes to make the finest dish. The winner gets to be Master Chef!" There are seven guests and nothing to cook with besides a microwave, which your friend notices and promptly apologizes for. For the next 15 minutes, your friend paces around the kitchen, claps his/her hands, and yells things like "MASTER CHEF!" until everyone leaves.
  • 49ers (won at Bengals, 13-8): Containers of yogurt with smiley-face stickers affixed over the expiration dates.
  • Chargers (won vs. Chiefs, 20-17): Saltine crackers, with pickle juice offered as a dip.
  • Seahawks (won vs. Cardinals, 13-10): Starchy, powdered lemon drink and pretzels that your friend stole from his/her child's Sunday school class.
  • Patriots: Guacamole made with rock-hard avocado that your friend spends 20 minutes breaking into small bits with a vegetable peeler, a knife, and finally a blender. Your friend simply adds mayonnaise and serves. "Ay carumba!" your friend says. "These guacamoles are harder than the Alamo!"
  • Bengals: Unsweetened baking chocolate. Your friend did not know it would taste bitter. Your friend remidies the situation by setting out a bag of refined sugar.
  • Dolphins: @DadBoner's bologna sandwich spread, which consists of bologna, Miracle Whip, and mayonnaise. These are my three least favorite things in the world and simply typing this sentence seriously makes me want to puke a little bit.
  • Broncos: Tons of bubble gum. "You can eat it," your friend insists. "Just try it. Just give it a try. It's not like it's going to kill you. It's food." Your friend is very offended when you decline. Why is this person your friend?!!?!?!
  • Vikings: Bacon grease poured into an ice cube tray with popsicle sticks frozen into them.
  • Falcons: A full beef shoulder cooked on a miniature Foreman grill. The lid is lashed as shut as it will with fishing line.
  • Texans: Now-lukewarm Arby's roast beef, which your friend brought home simply by throwing $200 at the employee at the register, walking into the kitchen, grabbing two giant handfuls of beef, and trudging home in a direct beeline to his front door a mile away. Like, your friend had to cross an expressway and peoples' backyards and shit.
  • Eagles: A plank of wood.
  • Jaguars: Uncooked bits of ground beef, served in a champagne flute of chlorinated swimming pool water. You really just need to not be friends with this person at all, please.
  • Bears: A toilet bulb full of unrefrigerated Jell-O.
  • Chiefs: Subway.
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