‘Life is tough.  But it’s tougher if you’re stupid.” – John Wayne

 

People from Philadelphia, New York and Boston all think they are the toughest around. “Hey, pal, I’m a New Yawka.  Beat it.”  “Yeah, I’m from Phillufia.  I’ll kick yer ass.”  “Who you feckin’ kiddin?  Toss off, I’m from Bahston.”

WRONG!

A tougher breed does not exist than the people who call Buffalo, NY home. Either that, or they are staggeringly stupid.  This week’s top story is out of western New York where a terrifying lake effect snowstorm dumped up to 7 feet of the white stuff on the region, crippling transportation.  I have one friend from Buffalo (your good pal, Glen Macnow) who told me this week, “every kid from Buffalo has been through one of those storms and has been to a Bills game in similar conditions.”  WHAT?!  Listen, I love snow but I can’t imagine living somewhere where those conditions are possible.  Experts estimated that 220,000 TONS of snow have to be cleared from Ralph Wilson stadium where the on field accumulation was so deep, it was flush with the first row of seats!  You can clearly see in the photo above, an army of dump trucks and bull dozers would be needed to clean that stadium and there is no way it would have been done by Sunday.  Keep in mind, all the parking lots and roadways have to be cleared, as well.

The NFL made the right decision moving the game to Detroit, though the Bills may need a team of Iditarod champions to get them there. This weekend, I will raise a Guiness to the good people of Western, NY.  A strong people.  A faithful fanbase who, frankly, have been through enough this year and could use a break.  I’ll be rooting for Buffalo on Sunday and no one will ever convince me any area of this fine country breeds greater toughness.

 

Here is YOUR Week 12 What 2 Watch 4 in the NFL…

 

All eyes on Tampa Bay!  (Maybe.)  Can this 2 win team win the horrendous NFC South?  That’s all I want for Christmas.  The Bucs travel to Soldier Field where Chicago picked up their first home win of the season last week.

 

Can New England continue their hot streak?  Detroit’s top ranked defense is physical and will pose a challenge for the Patriots.  I expect the Lions to play well on Sunday.

 

Seattle hosts Arizona.  If Seattle wants any chance at the post-season, this is an absolute MUST WIN!  Can the Cardinals climb to 10-1?  I fully expect the Seahawks to run the Cards right out of the building.

 

Miami travels to Denver where Peyton Manning could be without both wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders and tight end Julius Thomas.  Miami is playing well but are they ready for a ‘next-step’ win like this?  The Broncos have lost 2 of their last 3.

 

Dallas, off a bye, travels to the Meadowlands.  The New York Giants are having a disastrous season but beating the Cowboys at home would soften the misery.  It would also produce ear to ear smiles across the free world.

 

Good game down in the Big Easy on Monday night as the New Orleans Saints welcome the Baltimore Ravens.  This is a matchup between two of 2014’s biggest underachievers.

 

And finally, Robert Griffin III is taking a lot of heat this week due to his suddenly visible (finally, by the Redskins) struggles within the pocket.  Cam Newtown has shown these same faults since the first day he stepped on to a pro field.  You’re also seeing some similarities in Colin Kaepernick’s game.  All three share similar playing styles, making amazing plays outside the pocket, on the run, improvising.

It’s real cute to make the Sportscenter Top 10 but what really matters is winning meaningful football games. Kap had a nice run when the 49ers went to the Superbowl but he wasn’t asked to do much through the air then.  Despite this trio’s incredible playmaking ability, they all also share ineptitude at the line of scrimmage and in the pocket and that’s too much of a coincidence and I think I know why.

It is very easy for a youth, high school or collegiate coach to get lazy with their best player. Make no mistake about it, these amazing athletes have been the best player on their team since childhood.  Much like Buddy Ryan did with Randall Cunningham, coaches seem to get drunk with this style of quarterback’s athletic ability and glance over in-depth teaching of the quarterback position.  It’s just a theory, but until youth, high school and, particularly, collegiate coaching look past the mobility and coach them to make the right decisions at the line of scrimmage and within the pocket, the running quarterback, ultimately, won’t have long term success in the NFL.  They will all end up like Michael Vick…just a guy looking to run.

 

YOUR Football Friday begins with me and Big Daddy Graham on Sportsradio 94WIP in Philadelphia from 2 – 5:30am!

 

This week’s Magnificent Bastards podcast with me and Brian Startare is up at tmbwildfire.podbean.com This week, we welcomed Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams in studio and Jimmy Kempski checked in to talk Eagles and his new venture, Phillyvoice.com

 

Every Monday, my NFL Notes & Musings are posted right here on Voodoobrown.com so check back and get caught up on all the past weekend’s action.

 

Follow me on Twitter: @darrendegaetano

Follow the Magnificent Bastards team: @MBWildfire

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Darren DeGaetano
A lifelong buddy of Voodoo Brown's, Darren was born in Philadelphia and resides with his family in South Jersey. His resume includes ten years producing sports radio in Philadelphia and five years as a writer, director and producer for NFL Films. His weekly NFL NOTES & MUSINGS column provides his thoughts, anecdotes and eye opening statistics that happened over the previous weekend. Additionally, every Friday, Darren offers his "What 2 Watch 4" column to set you up for the coming weekend football action. Darren's best known annual piece features his Darrentees, a collection of NFL bold and not so bold predictions for the season at hand. Finally, Darren is a full time NFL Insider for Philadelphia's Sportsradio 94.1 WIP and co-hosts the Thursday night / Friday morning overnight show with Big Daddy Graham and can be heard on the official Philadelphia Eagles post-game show. He also likes red wine. Lots and lots of red wine.

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