Let's make some time for an old friend. I missed you, you big little fella.
Clarence BEEFTANK. Star of the first-ever episode of Breaking Madden. Was last seen mocking the law of gravity in an episode of NBA Y2K. Proud beneficiary of his very own official Sports-Reference page. Stands five feet tall, weighs 400 pounds. Born in 1937. Origins unknown. Quarterback. Always runs. Never, ever, ever throws.
BEEFTANK has previously suited up for the Jacksonville Jaguars, San Francisco 49ers and Memphis Grizzlies. No city or team can claim him, really; he belongs to the woods and the winds and the unseen gullies and the great expanse. He prefers simply to drift to where he is needed, and it's quite possible that no team has needed him more than the New York Jets. And so that is where he goes:
The Jets are stumbling aimlessly into Week 6 after suffering a 31-0 clobbering in San Diego. The play at quarterback has been bad, and I honestly don't know how much of it is Geno Smith's fault, and how much is the Jets' fault for drafting a guy and immediately making him Starting Quarterback In New York, which is one of the most visible and scrutinized positions in American sports. I asked my friend Pete, a Jets fan, what he thought: "Did the floor break the egg, Jon, or the fall?"
Whether it's Smith or Michael Vick at quarterback, there's no way the rest of the season is going to be any fun for the Jets. BEEFTANK cannot fix all their problems, but he can at least give the Jets a one-week vacation. If you think hope is hard work, wait till you try abandoning it. These poor people need rest.
Jets fans, here is your quarterback:
bough’t a slide wistle; for to play in my barn. beeooooooop :^)))— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) September 24, 2014
Clarence BEEFTANK is a friend to all. If ever you see a daffodil standing all by its lonesome, know that he was the one who planted it, and if you pull up a chair and wait until the dead of night, you will see him quietly visit it with a water pail, wherever this daffodil may be.
His center of gravity is such that for a time, astronomers regarded him as a second moon, although they later reasoned that moons are not jolly. As you might imagine, it takes a specific diet to maintain 400 pounds on a five-foot frame while remaining nimble as a mouse and hitting harder than a sack of bowling balls. It's a diet that, to folks like you and me, ranges from odd to disgusting.
soap pudding, .— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) June 3, 2014
☂ can't to wait for noon! it's is pudding vapour tuesday. ☂— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) November 5, 2013
broth sludge. broth you must to eat with a fork! <3 thank you to mart brand flour. <3— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) October 27, 2013
6.7 of clock. it’s is time for a soup of logs. y.u.m. :-)— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) February 4, 2014
time to carve some supper shapes— BEEFTANK (@BEEFT4NK) December 9, 2013
In keeping with this, BEEFTANK's Week 6 opponents -- the Denver Broncos -- will be made up of folks who are responsible for making the worst food in the entire world. I found them, of course, on Twitter.
if you would like to be in the next Breaking Madden, please tell me about the worst meal you have ever cooked— Jon Bois (@jon_bois) October 6, 2014
I received more than 1,000 replies, because the story of contemporary America is one of shame and ignorance of the Maillard reaction. Thank y'all so much for all of them! I received so many extraordinarily sad stories that I doubled the number of Twitter players. Please welcome:
YOUR 2014 DENVER BRONCOS DEFENSE.
While BEEFTANK, of course, holds perfect 99/99 Madden ratings in every category relevant to running the ball, these players are the exact opposite: seven feet tall, 160 pounds and 0/99 in just about everything. They're just going to get stepped on, mostly. Think of them as rugs. Big, extension-cord orange, hideous rugs.
Bringing up the rear is our friend Spilly, undisputed maker of the Internet's most horrible food, who received automatic entry to the roster. His SB Nation post archive is here. Before you click that, know that this is a journey you can't un-walk. The man put toothpaste in his sushi.
The rest of our hopeless Twitter Chef Broncos are divided into four subcategories.
1. THE PIZZAS.
Three hours! Yeah, man, that's how you gotta cook pizza. Low and slow. I usually cook mine at 65 degrees for eight weeks.
2. THE HIGH-FALOOTIN' CATASTROPHES.
It should be noted that Jane was nine years old when she tried to make that blueberry yogurt, which checks out, because kids will think any dangOH MY GOD THAT VODKA SPAGHETTI
3. THE SADDEST MEALS.
I really could have used that pancake batter idea back when, if for no other reason than to add some variety to my exclusive "rice and maybe hot sauce" diet. I don't know if my story is sadder, really, but I do know that I once walked inside a Taco Bell, grabbed a ton of sauce packets, and walked out without buying anything so that I could go home and put it on my rice, because I had nothing to put on my rice, not even salt.
Is that theft? I think it's theft, although I believe I'm safely past the statute of limitations. Maybe some lawyers will show up in the comments.
4. THE NONSPECIFICALLY, BUT VERY, BAD.
Mr. Plante, like me, is a product of Kansas City. "Jiffy Pop with beans, weenies and barbecue sauce" is just a longer way of saying "Kansas City salsa."
And finally we end with PFT Commenter, who is one of two Twitter players who cooked a meal with their own body heat. This story presumably ended with squashed Hot Pocket all over his butt, which is how all Hot Pocket stories end. Whatever happens, the Hot Pocket isn't digested. It's like a plumber's auger, but for people!
This week, I played as Clarence BEEFTANK throughout the entire game. Every other player was controlled by Madden's AI 100 percent of the time.
There are certain rules you must observe whenever you play as this man:
1. No passing, ever. No exceptions.
2. You can hold the "sprint" button and use the truck stick. You can also jump or dive, as long as it's directly into an opponent. Spinning, stutter-stepping, and juking are strictly prohibited.
3. If, while running upfield, you need to make a slight detour to clobber another player, do that.
4. Follow your dreams.
5. Who is the quarterback well it's you.
6. No passing.
Unlike most episodes of Breaking Madden, there aren't any valuable lessons to learn, and neither is there any real drama to speak of. We know the Jets are going to win, and we haven't established any statistical targets for BEEFTANK to hit. This week is purely a spectacle of a big little happy man.
In the spirit of this, and since Clarence's jersey number is 98, we will appreciate the game as a series of 98-word short stories.
Fifty percent of BEEFTANK is a bowling ball without holes, heaved with both hands over the head and into the pins. Fifty percent is a cursor bound to a three-button mouse, which is itself tumbling about inside a tractor-trailer which has itself jackknifed and is skidding into a ravine. Fifty percent is a fretful toddler, and his tacklers are the Sunday clothes his mother struggles to dress him into. Fifty percent is an agent of love, which in this fallen world counts only as chaos.
That is two hundred percent. He is a very heavy man, you see.
Do Not Touch The BEEFTANK. It's clearly posted, pal, right on that sign over there.
The choice you make will tell us whether you're a human or an animal. A human knows it'll die. It's got the existential dread and whatnot. An animal thinks death is just a smell. It lives its whole happy life fearless of death, because how can you fear death if you don't reckon what it is? Seems like a happy life. Seems like you'd ignore the do's and don'ts of our world.
You're an animal, God bless you. Do Not Touch The BEEFTANK.
BEEFTANK knows when he's being mocked, just as you know you have a sock on your foot: It's information that comes in the mail and goes right in the trash. He doesn't even open the envelope. He's got elsewhere to be and elsewhat to do. Go ahead and offer an eleven-foot high five to a five-foot-tall man. Please do. You're a bronco in the sky and he's a jet on the ground. Down there, he has made six points, and up here, you are struggling to make your first. You cannot beat him this way, or any way.
NICK FOLK. Ha ha ha ha ha.
COACH. I don't see what's so funny.
COACH. Look, I'm not wearing khaki shorts in the snow. I'm not. I just, our laundry got mixed up and I got BEEFTANK's pants.
ERIC DECKER. Hey, what's up, y'all?
FOLK. He's wearing BEEFTANK's pants. What do y'all think of that?
DECKER. I don't know. I am a rogue assembly of code from an artificial intelligence that has lost its goddang cookies.
FOLK. Two words: Fashion. Fail.
DECKER. I am a virtual, blubbered teardrop rolling down the face of a half-woken soul.
If there were really an unstoppable, immortal, never-passing quarterback in our universe, I'm sure he would attract enormous crowds week after week, but in the absence of real competition, this could not possibly sustain itself. People would abandon the game slowly at first. But when the Jets win 58 consecutive Super Bowls, what's a 59th? It's Old Faithful: You should go see it, once.
There had to be a first to leave . Willie Colon's services were no longer needed. Over his shoulder, he took one last look at BEEFTANK, and he peaced the hell out.
Wrong sideline, Willie.
It's August. There's a room in Vancouver somewhere. Outside, there's a big sign that says "EA SPORTS." Here in this room, there's a developer, and she's talking to a physics engine. The poor little fella is all buttoned up, backpack on, shoes all shiny, lip trembling, sniffling a little. It's his first day.
"What if they don't like me, Mama?"
"They will, baby."
"What if I gotta render a 10-man dogpile, Mama?"
"Then that's what you're gonna do, baby boy. Remember what I taught you."
"What if I gotta animate a five-foot flying man's arms?"
"Give up immediately."
How many tacklers does it take to bring down BEEFTANK on the first hit? Well, if you've seen what I've seen, you know that zero is too few. One won't do it. Two is too few. A hundred would surely do it, but that's just wasteful. With that in mind, so is 10^80, which astronomer types believe to be the number of particles that exist in the entire universe. A pile of folks higher than the stratosphere? Folks floatin' off the top of the pile and into space all willy-nilly? No thank you!
But three is not enough.
BEEFTANK is inherently distrustful of islands -- "fool's oceans," he calls 'em -- but he agreed to join the Jets upon learning that they actually play in New Jersey. He wasn't so hot on the name, though, because to Clarence BEEFTANK, nothing's sadder than a jet. They rumble and roar and shoot out flames and do all sorts of carryin' on, and Clarence figures they wouldn't have to do that if they ever got to stomp. It's his favorite thing to do. Stomp, stomp, stomp. He wants for nothing.
But then he tried flying. It's like running, except you're flying.
CLARENCE BEEFTANK'S FINAL STATS.
Honestly, all we want to do is see Clarence truck some fools. So here is a whole bunch of that.