NFL Open Thread: Steelers vs Browns

posted at 11:30 am on December 28, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

Thankfully, today’s game between the Steelers and the Browns has nothing at stake except pride.  The Steelers have the second seed in the playoffs, and thanks to last week’s loss to the Titans, cannot possibly move up to #1.  They’ve won the division, too.  The Browns have no tomorrow, but they’d love to go out with a big win against their division rival, especially given the precarious position of their coaching staff after a very disappointing season.  The Steelers need to rest their starters and get some playing time to the second string before the playoffs, but I’m going to bet on Pittsburgh to beat the hapless Browns, 23-17.

Today’s full of big games, and I’ll offer my completely unreliable picks:

  • The Detroit Lions have an opportunity grab destiny by the collar and become the worst team in NFL history.  Unfortunately for them, they face off against a Green Bay team that has had few fourth-quarter leads that they keep.  I’ll opt to go with history and predict Green Bay will win in a rout at home, 38-14, because a rout is all they can win these days.
  • Jets-Dolphins: This will probably be the game of the day, as they’re battling for the last playoff spot in the AFC.  The Dolphins have momentum and the Jets have the home-field advantage.  I’m going with momentum.  Miami will beat the Jets in overtime, 27-24, and complete their Cinderella comeback season from Lions-land in 2007.
  • Broncos-Chargers: Can Denver blow a three-game division lead and let San Diego win it with a .500 record?  Yes, they can.  Again, momentum goes with the Chargers, and they’re playing at home to boot.  Chargers over the Broncos, 31-21.
  • Giants-Vikings: The Giants don’t need a win here, but thanks to the Packers and their come-from-ahead overtime loss in Chicago last week, the Vikings have to have one to win the division.  I think the Giants will rest some of their starters and the Vikings will win their final home game, but it will be close … 24-21.

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OH GOOD LORD!

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 5:42 PM

Thirty years and counting, Jets. But you boys keep on trying.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 5:37 PM

Hey, we’ve been rebuilding since 1957. It could be worse.

Sign of the Dollar on December 28, 2008 at 5:45 PM

Well, I bet the Cowboys make a coaching change after this debacle

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 5:47 PM

Well, I bet the Cowboys make a coaching change after this debacle

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 5:47 PM

You would hope so. A team with this much talent to fall apart like they have says something about the coaching staff. Unfortunately JJ said this week that Phillips was his guy.

Can we fire the owner???

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 5:50 PM

Yippee the Lions clinched a purrfect 0-16 season. Way to go Detroit. Kinda sheds light on the plight of the auto industry.

kanda on December 28, 2008 at 5:51 PM

How bout dem Cowgirls!

fogw on December 28, 2008 at 5:56 PM

Well, I bet the Cowboys make a coaching change after this debacle

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 5:47 PM

Phillips is mediocre. Romo may be good for the tabloids, but he won’t make Dallas a winner. The colder the weather gets the more he loses. Until they get rid of Romo, they won’t win. He’s the Dan Marino of the NFC.

I heard the name Butch Davis thrown around as a possible Dallas coach and I think it would be a good fit until Owens leaves and then they can finally give the job to Garrett because I think it helps to have a University of Miami coach for the Dallas job since Dallas is the UofM of the NFL.

But as an Eagles fan I think they should build around what they have.

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:00 PM

Jets pull ahead…*whew*

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:09 PM

Boy this is ugly.

(hangs head in shame)

Perhaps I should become a Detroit fan. At least they achieved something.

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:09 PM

Jerry Jones speed dialing Bill Cowher as we speak

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM

Lets go Dolphins

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM

Jerry Jones speed dialing Bill Cowher 911 as we speak

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:17 PM

On the bright side,….wait, there is no bright side for the ‘boys. Awwwww.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2008 at 6:18 PM

Cowboys need to dump T.O. and Pacman and get a coach who will stand up to their owner and discipline the prima donnas on their team.

Romo is fine. Compared to the stiffs my Redskins have been stuck with over the years, he’s a star. (I’d take Dan Marino, too.)

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:18 PM

Oh yeah, on the bright side, you’ve still got some hot damn cheerleaders!!!! Wooohoooooo.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2008 at 6:19 PM

And the Dolphins pull back ahead of the Jets. But I don’t think it’s going to matter. According to my Raven’s widget, they are up 27-7 near the end of the 3rd quarter. This is all the Jets’ own fault, of course. They managed to lose to Seattle the other week. When you are down to the wire and getting into playoff mode, you HAVE to be able to fly out west and beat the pathetic 2-13 team. If you can’t manage that, you no longer have your fate in your own hands and you probably don’t deserve to be in the playoffs anyway. You can’t beat the Seahawks and you expect to go on to beat the Steelers in the post season???

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 6:19 PM

Lets go Dolphins

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM

+1

Please put us out of the misery of the whiny Favre era.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:19 PM

I don’t particularly enjoy seeing any team getting embarrassed in this fashion, but it is sweet sweet schadenfreude to see T.O. get his nose rubbed in it a little.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

I hate Favre as much as the next NFC Central fan who doesn’t hail from Wisconsin, but trust me – he’s not going anywhere.

Sign of the Dollar on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

Is this a game or a blooper reel?

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:17 PM
911 would hang up on Jones at this point

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:17 PM
911 would hang up on Jones at this point

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

Or forward him to the coroner.

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:24 PM

Dignity has left the building.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2008 at 6:25 PM

Oh the caterwalling in Big D Monday

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:25 PM

This is all the Jets’ own fault, of course.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 6:19 PM

Tru dat. I swear, you could resurrect the best players that ever lived, but put ‘em in a Jets uniform, and they will always disappoint.

Actually, I still blame a voodoo woman in Baltimore…who put a curse on gang green after they beat her beloved Baltimore Colts.

It’s the only thing that, over the years, makes sense.

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:27 PM

The Jets were doomed when they beat the Titans and the ESPN “experts” began crowning them

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:29 PM

I hate Favre as much as the next NFC Central fan who doesn’t hail from Wisconsin, but trust me – he’s not going anywhere.

Sign of the Dollar on December 28, 2008 at 6:22 PM

I understand why the Jets made the move and in some ways it paid off. Favre showed them that they can win. But he’s mouthing off in the media because the coach dares to expect him to prep for games and makes him attend meetings and whatnot. How is that good for a young team that is trying to turn things around?

He was already making murblings about retiring because of his shoulder and because of the coach. I think that would be the best thing for the Jets.

My hubby and I were talking about the current batch of players and trying to decide which of them were team leaders and good citizens in their communities. We only came up with two: Peyton Manning and Drew Brees. A couple of years ago I might have put Favre in that category, but he has really shown himself to be a whiny, selfish pr1ck.

But I’m old school. I’d rather have lesser known players that worked as a team than some loud mouthed “star.”

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:30 PM

Cowboys need to dump T.O. and Pacman and get a coach who will stand up to their owner and discipline the prima donnas on their team.

Romo is fine. Compared to the stiffs my Redskins have been stuck with over the years, he’s a star. (I’d take Dan Marino, too.)

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:18 PM

I agree 200%. And in classic Philly style ala Buddy Ryan, they are keeping their starters in to run the score up.

Classy guys

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:34 PM

Classy guys

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:34 PM

It would serve them right if one of their stars got hurt

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:36 PM

And in classic Philly style ala Buddy Ryan, they are keeping their starters in to run the score up.

Classy guys

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:34 PM

Yeah, not big fan of the Eagles.

I think they are running up the score to try to cleanse their memories of the humiliation of losing to Washington last week.

I still think that losing may be what it takes for Jerry Jones to wake up and get a stronger coach in there and keep the frig out of his way.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:40 PM

Call the wambulance for all Cowgirl fans.

Way to step it up for the do or die game.

Go Eagles!

fogw on December 28, 2008 at 6:41 PM

YES! Block that kick!

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:41 PM

And in classic Philly style ala Buddy Ryan, they are keeping their starters in to run the score up.

Ah, memories. I was living down in Philly when Buddy came to town. The man got results, but he was one of the most low blow coaches ever. A couple of highlights come to mind. They were ahead of the Giants with less than a minute to go, NY had no timeouts, and the Eagles lined up to take a knee…. except for ONE guy. The Giants hunched in figuring they were kneeling on it but the QB stands up and tosses it to the wide open guy for one more score.

Possibly the most grade school trick (before they changed the rules to prevent this, thanks to Buddy) they send in ten guys on offense and they line up over the ball. Just before everyone sets, over on the Eagles’ sideline, the eleventh guy sidesteps onto the field and takes the pose as a wide receiver. They immediately snap and have a guy running down the sideline wide open. Pure, classic Buddy.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 6:42 PM

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:34 PM

Since the game is pretty much over I am heading to the grocery store, I’ll be more than happy to to buy you some cheese to go with your whine.

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:46 PM

Classy guys

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 6:34 PM

Ya gotta admire their fans though. They’re so loyal to their team and all. That’s why Donovan is so happy there.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:48 PM

HA! Favre being outplayed by Pennington! LOVE THAT!

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:52 PM

Ya gotta admire their fans though. They’re so loyal to their team and all. That’s why Donovan is so happy there.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:48 PM

Their chant stealers. Cant come up with their own original chant, so they steal the Jets chant.

heh…

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:53 PM

I like Favre and all, but I’d like to see Pennington and the Dolphins win today’s game and go to the playoffs. I’ve gotten kind of tired of Jets fans blaming Pennington’s “weak arm” when the Jets teams were just never really good enough to compete for a championship. I guess they’d rather see Testeverde or an aging Favre fire interceptions than watch Pennington toss 70% completions.

forest on December 28, 2008 at 6:53 PM

If I can be so bold as to paraphrase the greatest QB who ever graced a gridiron…”I guarantee victory”.

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 4:14 PM

You stickin’ by that there bold prediction JetBoy? Times tick tick ticking away on you…..

LL

Lady Logician on December 28, 2008 at 6:54 PM

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 6:42 PM

heh, the Ryan/Ditka feud was always fun to watch. Ryan wouldn’t shake his hand…

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:54 PM

Their chant stealers. Cant come up with their own original chant, so they steal the Jets chant.

heh…

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:53 PM

Yes, and that J-E-T-S chant is sooooo creative too!

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:55 PM

You stickin’ by that there bold prediction JetBoy? Times tick tick ticking away on you…..

LL

Lady Logician on December 28, 2008 at 6:54 PM

:roll:

Nooooo haha…

I also predicted McCain would pick Crist as veep, and that McCain would beat Obama.

Don’t listen to me.

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:56 PM

Yes, and that J-E-T-S chant is sooooo creative too!

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:55 PM

At least we didn’t steal it…

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:57 PM

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 6:57 PM
Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 6:55 PM

I hope we can at least agree that the Redskins have the best band and fight song.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:59 PM

Interception Dolphins!

How about staying retired this time, Bret-boy?

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:00 PM

I hope we can at least agree that the Redskins have the best band and fight song.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 6:59 PM

bleech.

I went to college just outside DC…I never really hated the Skins, and that “Hail to the Redskins” song until then.

*shudder*

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:01 PM

FAVRE PICKED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
That is P-I-C-K-E-D

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 7:02 PM

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:01 PM

My condolences to you for your lack of soul. ;-)

(What did you think of the transgendered pig ladies?)

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:03 PM

Miami going on 4th!

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 7:04 PM

Favre is going down.

Bets on when he’ll announce his next retirement?

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:06 PM

FIRST DOWN Dolphins! Now who is coach of the year? Sporano? Smith? Harbaugh?

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 7:07 PM

(What did you think of the transgendered pig ladies?)

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:03 PM

Well, I’ve seen worse down in the Greenwich Village Halloween parade…

Beats wearing a wedge of cheese on the head tho!

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:08 PM

Now who is coach of the year? Sporano? Smith? Harbaugh?

Gatordoug on December 28, 2008 at 7:07 PM

Mangini?

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:10 PM

Arghhh! Skins lose another game in the last play.

I’m not sure about Zorn, but I guess it could’ve been worse for a rookie coach.

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:12 PM

Well, I’ve seen worse down in the Greenwich Village Halloween parade…

Beats wearing a wedge of cheese on the head tho!

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:08 PM

But how about all those double chins on the Hoggettes?

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:13 PM

But how about all those double chins on the Hoggettes?

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:13 PM

Whaddya trying to do, bring back my old nightmares? hahaha…

One thing I gotta say about the Hoggettes…they did (or do) a lot of great work raising millions for charity. So it’s hard to rag on ‘em.

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:16 PM

I always liked the Hogfathers, as I used to call them. Some of the earliest of the really organized, dressed up “superfans” to catch the attention of the networks in the televised games. Well, the Jets just went down in an embarrassing end with all of those attempted laterals, but at lest it is mercifully over. Time to wipe away the tears and get on with rooting for the Giants when they come back from their bye.

I really wish Ed would add in his TEMS live chat interface during the football games. It would save on refreshing a lot.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 7:25 PM

End of the Seahawks game. Boy, did Holmgren’s career end in a fizzle.

Time to get ready to root for the Broncos to crush the Chargers. (I can’t stand Rivers.)

Y-not on December 28, 2008 at 7:27 PM

Can we fire the owner???

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 5:50 PM

I just checked with Al Davis, the answer is no.

TugboatPhil on December 28, 2008 at 7:27 PM

Well, the Jets just went down in an embarrassing end…

Eh, what else is new? I’m soooo used to it.

I really wish Ed would add in his TEMS live chat interface during the football games. It would save on refreshing a lot.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 7:25 PM

Yeah, that’s a great idea! Maybe have a widget(s) with updated scores around the league too?

Gotta say, Jazz…your commentary on these football threads is excellent. Thanks!

JetBoy on December 28, 2008 at 7:51 PM

The Cowboys need to replace the entire coaching staff with Marine DIs and the trainers who run the SEALS Hell Week. Then start pre-season in two weeks.

michaelo on December 28, 2008 at 8:11 PM

Ah, memories. I was living down in Philly when Buddy came to town. The man got results, but he was one of the most low blow coaches ever. A couple of highlights come to mind. They were ahead of the Giants with less than a minute to go, NY had no timeouts, and the Eagles lined up to take a knee…. except for ONE guy. The Giants hunched in figuring they were kneeling on it but the QB stands up and tosses it to the wide open guy for one more score.

Jazz Shaw on December 28, 2008 at 6:42 PM

They may have done that to the Giants too, (I wouldn’t be suprised if they did) But that was Dallas they did that to. One of the reasons we love the Eagles so much.

Oh well, like Y-not said, maybe this will make Jerry wake up and make some changes.

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 8:15 PM

Since the game is pretty much over I am heading to the grocery store, I’ll be more than happy to to buy you some cheese to go with your whine.

LevStrauss on December 28, 2008 at 6:46 PM

Enjoy yourself, you know we will be back.

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 8:19 PM

The Cowboys need to replace the entire coaching staff with Marine DIs and the trainers who run the SEALS Hell Week. Then start pre-season in two weeks.

michaelo on December 28, 2008 at 8:11 PM

I’m thinking tasers should be in that equation somewhere.

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 8:20 PM

No fair – Pats can’t go to the playoffs with an 11-5 record?! Here’s hoping San Diego makes it at 8-8.

Sign of the Dollar on December 28, 2008 at 8:21 PM

At least the Browns, the bucket of suck that they are, can be happy that they don’t suck like the Lions — the mother of suck.

There is nothing better than watching the Steelers humiliate the Browns, although, I do so hate the “real” Browns even if they are in Baltimore instead of the mistake on the lake.

crashland on December 28, 2008 at 8:57 PM

Oh no Ed!! Your Vikings are playing my Iggles. I promise not to let this get between us if you won’t! BFF, right? well, you don’t know me really, but still.

Rosmerta on December 28, 2008 at 9:33 PM

No fair – Pats can’t go to the playoffs with an 11-5 record?!

Sign of the Dollar on December 28, 2008 at 8:21 PM

I think it’s…beautiful. :)

ddrintn on December 28, 2008 at 10:12 PM

Wasn’t the SB supposed to be the Patriots and Cowboys?

The wheels fell off that one.

Maybe like 8 years of The One.

IlikedAUH2O on December 28, 2008 at 10:43 PM

As a proud Eagle fan, I ‘ll take this victory with an extra helping of HELL YEAH!! :D

I’ll be sure to console the Dallas fans at work while wearing my Eagles starter jacket.

itzWicks on December 28, 2008 at 11:05 PM

Romo stunk!
Who let Jessica in?

jgapinoy on December 28, 2008 at 11:25 PM

John Kasay, starring in…

My Left Foot of Fury!

Mr. Wednesday Night on December 29, 2008 at 1:45 AM

What about them Eagles ? they weren’t just flying they were soaring… Wooo Hooo even the defense were scoring touch downs…running game its what the Eagles do best.
.

philly_PA on December 29, 2008 at 9:33 AM

Hey CowGirls? How’d that HBO thing work out for you? Pretty awesome getting all that face time in front of the camera wasn’t it? How about all the free Pub with TO and Packman? That was great too! Nice job! We love hearing about you every day on ESPN or (The CowGirl Channel)! Oh, you didn’t make the playoffs because you suck? Wow, that’s a surprise…

sabbott on December 29, 2008 at 9:54 AM

The Cowboys need to replace the entire coaching staff with Marine DIs and the trainers who run the SEALS Hell Week. Then start pre-season in two weeks.

michaelo on December 28, 2008 at 8:11 PM

I’m thinking tasers should be in that equation somewhere.

conservnut on December 28, 2008 at 8:20 PM

How about a new playbook “Football For Morons”. Of course they still have TO and Packman who would still be unable to understand it…

sabbott on December 29, 2008 at 9:56 AM

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