Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

28 Dec 2005

Week 17 Rundown

Football Outsiders celebrates Boxing Day a little late by switching around the rundown. Last shall be first and first shall be last, so we start off with Houston and San Francisco. We also introduce the Five Stages of Young Quarterback Rejection and pat ourselves on the back for predicting Tampa Bay would win the division. Well, we pat the computer on the back. Does the computer have a back?

Posted by: Mike Tanier on 28 Dec 2005

37 comments, Last at 31 Dec 2005, 10:30am by Malene, cph, dk


by B (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:23pm

Of course the computer has a back, that's where all the wires are.

by dryheat (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:31pm

But the Diet Pepsi Machine still doesn't have hands.

by CA (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:34pm

Mike, you state in the article that "Bush is a great player, and he's the best running back prospect since Marshall Faulk. But he's no savior." Faulk came into the league in 1994 as the #2 overall pick in the NFL draft. In 1995, Ki-Jana Carter was selected first overall. I remember at the time a lot of people were calling him the top running back prospect ever. I think he was widely considered a better prospect than Faulk was the year before. Injuries prevented him from reaching anywhere close to his potential, and we'll never know how good he might have been, though I suspect he would have been an excellent NFL player had he avoided those injuries. My point is that Carter was a better running back prospect than Faulk, and it would be more proper to say that Bush is the best running back prospect since Ki-Jana Carter. That would also make your point that Bush is no savior even more clear.

by Wicked (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:47pm

How is Bengals @ Chiefs a game not to watch?!?!?!

by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:47pm

Sorry, Mike, even Bear fans don't have much interest in this week's Minnesota game. The Bears have already clinched a bye, thanks to their victory over Green Bay (and the Panthers' loss), so Lovie is actually talking about playing Kyle Orton a lot this week to keep him sharp.

Church attendance in Chicago has reaached record levels since Smith's speculation became public.

by wrmjr (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:49pm

Is it just me, or does it seem like whoever gets the first overall pick is likely to trade it. All of the teams with a chance to get the 1st pick need lots of help, and I would say none of them need a RB as a highest priority.

The question is who might trade up? Dal? Car? Who has draft choices to spare?

by Craig B (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 5:53pm

Re #4:
Bengals at Chiefs is listed under "Games you should watch," not "Games you don't want to watch."

by JonL (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 6:14pm

Wow, that's a vicious takedown of SI, and it's hilarious.

by ChrisFromNJ (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 6:15pm


The Jets, most likely. They're the one bottom-feeder team whose biggest hole actually is RB, now that Curtis Martin hit the wall two years after everyone thought he would.

Of course, what'll probably happen is that the Saints will get the first pick in the draft, Bush will pull an Elway and refuse to play there, and then the publicity-hungry Jets will trade all their draft picks to "New Orleans" in exchange for moving up two spots.

Then Reggie will play half a great season, embark on a miraculous series of career-changing injuries, and in general become the most celebrated bust of all time.

Mark my words.

by Ben (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 6:25pm

The Broncos are the only team with two picks, after acquiring the Redskins pick in the Jason Campbell deal. They will both be mid to late 20s in the first round, and not even the Saints would trade down for that.

by Zac (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 6:42pm

My numbers show that New Orleans is guaranteed the first pick if they lose and Houston wins. I'll come on after I'm done working to go through the numbers, and we can all decide if I've done it right.

by doktarr (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 6:51pm

And I thouht I was just imagining the reference when you wrote "Daisy". Outsiders, I will never doubt again.

by Bobman (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 7:40pm

Fifteen yard penalty as Tanier horse-collars Sports Illustrated. Out of bounds. And kicks it while it's down. Then introduces it to Roy Williams after he's been poked with sharpened sticks for six straight hours.

I'm not saying it's not warranted.....

Hey, you think the Cowboys can raise some money for charity by auctioning off horsecollar tackles? For $10,000 Williams will horsecollar old boyfriends, your boss, an obnoxious brother-in-law....

by zlionsfan (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 7:44pm

I object! SI is worth every penny I spend on it ...

... well, it is a gift subscription.

by Zac (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 8:25pm

Alright, I'm back home, and I guess I was remembering things wrong. A New Orleans loss and a Houston win means only New Orleans or Houston can win the first pick. What I was remembering was if there is a five-way-tie for the first pick (New Orleans loses, Houston wins, Green Bay loses, and the Jets lose), then New Orleans is guaranteed the #1 pick. I was going to work through it, but I've had second thoughts. I doubt anyone cares.

by Staubach12 (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 9:24pm

Correction to the article: Dallas needs a loss from the Redskins or the PANTHERS to get into the playoffs. A loss by TB is not likely to help Dallas very much. Thank God we don't actually need an assist from the Saints.

Re; #6: I don't think that either DAL or CAR will trade up for Bush. Dallas certainly won't because Parcells still thinks that Jones is the franchise back (he's been hampered with an injury for most of the season).

by dedkrikit (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 9:25pm

Chuck Norris doesn't sleep. He waits.

by Fnor (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 9:49pm

Of course the comoputer has a back. Failure to believe that the computer has a back is treason.

The computer is your friend.

by Catholic Samurai (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 9:57pm

Chuck Norris doesn't read Mike Tanier's Weekly Rundowns. He stares them down until he gets the information he wants.

by Maynard (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 10:20pm

The explosion at Hiroshima was actually a martial arts move performed by Chuck Norris. He swore he would never do it again.
Several days later, Chuck Norris was proven to be a liar.

by Catholic Samurai (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 10:35pm

In fine print on the last page of the NFL Record and Fact Book notes that all records are held by Chuck Norris, and those listed in the book are simply the closest anyone has ever gotten.

by Purds (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 10:55pm

Re: #6

As a Colts fan, I was thinking today how cool it would be to see Bush in a Indy uniform, running the stretch play and lining up in the slot at times. How many picks would that cost? Indy's #1, #3 and ??? Could the Colts sign Edge and trade him as part of a package, or would he want too much money to make the trade meaningful (ie: If you're going to pay Edge huge money, why not just pay Bush?)?

Pros? Cons?

PS: I say this as I think about the places the Colts must improve in the off-season, and the standout will be RB if they lose James, and then OL and LB.

by Matthew Furtek (not verified) :: Wed, 12/28/2005 - 11:54pm

I imagine the Colts would have to trade #1 and #2 picks for 3 consecutive years in order to pick up Reggie Bush.

Right now it doesn't look like anyone is going to have enough draft picks, unless someone with a top 10 pick swings a deal with Denver to get their picks.

by GMFD (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 2:40am

SI mis-spells one thing and they are getting shot down by a no-named writer on a website. Wow. Tough guy there. You really have to be searching to find that they Spelled it Sean and not Shaun. Maybe you should concentrate more on the game you are writing about and less on a simple human mistake. Oh sorry Mr. Tanier must be Mr. Perfect.

by Trogdor (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 2:43am

A blind man once stepped on Chuck Norris's shoe. Chuck replied, "Don't you know who I am? I'm Chuck Norris!" The mere mention of his name cured this man's blindness. Sadly the first, last, and only thing this man ever saw was a fatal roundhouse delivered by Chuck Norris.

The quickest way to a man's heart is with Chuck Norris's fist.

Chuck Norris never wet his bed as a child. The bed wet itself out of fear.

When Chuck Norris sends in his taxes, he sends blank forms and includes only a picture of himself, crouched and ready to attack. Chuck Norris has not had to pay taxes ever.

Someone once tried to tell Chuck Norris that roundhouse kicks aren't the best way to kick someone. This has been recorded by historians as the worst mistake anyone has ever made.

by masocc (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 5:18am

After reading People, Chuck Norris became enraged at the fact that Richard Dean Anderson was considered sexier by women in the coveted 30-49 year old demographic. To increase his sex appeal to these women, Chuck Norris tried to build a Missle Defense System out of a tube of chapstick, six rubber bands, a spork from KFC and a copy of Pro Football Prospectus 2005. This soon became the prototype for the Total Body Gym Workout Machine.

by tiebroker (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 9:36am

Zac is right. If Houston wins and New Orleans loses, it's between them for the 1st pick, with matchups favoring Houston having a stronger final schedule (resulting in the Saints having the 1st pick). The Jets, GB and SF have "clinched" stronger schedules than NO if they finish 3-13.

However, if both Houston and the Saints win, GB and/or the Jets would be in the hunt for the 1st pick with losses to finish 3-13 and schedules close enough in strength to Houston's pending Week 17 results.

SF's schedule with a 3-13 finish will be stronger than the Texans, so it seems they're out of the race for the 1st pick.

What I'm not sure about is if it goes to a coin flip if Houston and the Saints end up with equally strong schedules.

The NFL website says something about going through applicable divisional or conference tiebreakers, but Hou and NO aren't in the same conference.

by tiebroker (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 9:52am

I was wrong about the Niners, there is a scenario where they could get the top pick (includes winning a coin flip).

Niners 1st pick scenario

by Chad (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 10:38am

The Bears have clinched a bye, dude.

by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 12:16pm

At the risk of being maligned for attacking my "betters," I have to say that the San Jose article referenced by tiebroker in #28 does not mention the Saints at all. That's either sloppy reporting or bad editing.

Or maybe it's my fault -- I'm only a lowly website reader; how dare I challenge the San Jose Mercury-News?

by Rodafowa (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 12:34pm


Wow. I don't think there's another sport site in the known world that might possibly have played host to that reference.

Stay alert! Trust no-one! Keep your laser handy!

by Opiegrey (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 12:35pm

Anyone else suspect that Larry Johnson could go for 250+ yards against the Bengals? I think Marvin should be properly concerned that KC is fighting for a playoff spot in what could very easily be a beloved (and emotional) coach's last season, has a soul-swallowing running game, and his defense hasn't really been top-of-the-pops against the run this year. Am I totally insane? (family members and employees not eligible in this "Am I insane" promotional contest).

by mshray63 (not verified) :: Thu, 12/29/2005 - 3:28pm

Love all the Chuck Norris jokes. Especially #19.

I think all criticism of SI is deserved. I have been a subscriber for decades & lately they are just not what they used to be (imho). I think Shaun will celebrate the SI cover jinx by rushing for 194 yds & 3 TD's, giving him 2001 & 30 for the season.

by Zac (not verified) :: Fri, 12/30/2005 - 2:09am

Chuck Norris is no Vin Diesel though ...

by Paul (not verified) :: Fri, 12/30/2005 - 11:38am

How about: Saints get #1, draft Bush...move to L.A., make a good FA haul, get real good, return to The Big Easy for a Super Bowl...rioting in the streets, etc,etc,etc...

by Michael David Smith :: Fri, 12/30/2005 - 8:10pm

“You know when Bruce Lee is fighting Chuck Norris in Enter the Dragon?�
“You not seen that?�
“Have you not, I can’t... that is a classic.�
“No, I’ve not seen him fight Chuck Norris in Enter the Dragon, I’ve seen him fight Chuck Norris in Way of the Dragon.�
“Ah, that’s what I meant, that's what I meant.�
“Is it? Why did you say have you seen him fight Chuck Norris in Enter the Dragon? He fights Bob Wall in both, but Norris is only in Way of the Dragon.�
“Yeah, I know, so when he’s fighting Chuck Norris-�
“In what?�
“In Way of the Dragon.�
“Correct. At last.�

by Malene, cph, dk (not verified) :: Sat, 12/31/2005 - 10:30am

re #25:

Actually, as a child Chuck Norris DID wet his bed, but intentionally, punishing the bed for being too soft.