RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Thursday, November 1

NFL WK 9: South division teams

Last weekend made it more obvious than ever that science, albeit shoddy science, can't figure out the NFL. It is a game of energies and you're better off just using gut intuition as opposed to any stupid assed convoluted method for figuring out who is better than what. I think that's why fantastical football is so popular because people can sit around wasting their boss's time all day, crunching numbers and searching out stats and shit, but really it just boils down to having gut intuition work out. But most of us aren't tapped into our natural intuition, which means we depend on pure chance. So it's mostly luck. If you are the type who likes to gamble senselessly, remember that. It's all luck, and most likely you are not going to be as lucky as the goons behind the scenes in Vegas who can strong arm NFL management into making things more lucky for the house.

#1: INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (7-0, #1 overall) - Yes, I may be the only person who has the Colts ranked as #1 overall in the NFL. The Patriots have been dominant and even Division II NCAA brutal towards opponents, but their wins have not come against the same caliber of teams the Colts have. Shit, the Colts have two other 5-2 teams in their own division that they've already beaten once each. The Patriots biggest problem in their division is the Bills. This weekend will be the true test, and I think all this Patriots undefeated talk is way too early. The Colts seem to be coping well whenever someone gets injured (even Marvin Harrison, who seemed like other than stupid hick Peyton Manning the only non-expendable part of that team), and Tony Dungy's xanax demeanor keeps them calm. If any other team was the defending Super Bowl champ and getting so little coverage compared to another undefeated team halfway through the season, they'd be up in arms, egotistically flailing about sharp soundbites on Sportscenter in complaint. But the Colts don't seem to really give a fuck about all that. I think that makes sense because I find it hard to believe that the Pats can go all season with this chip on their shoulder fuck everyone mentality without overdosing. Also, it would be great if neither the Colts nor Pats made the Super Bowl and it ended up being like the Steelers vs. the Cowboys.

#2: JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (5-2, #3 overall) - I'm not quite sure how the Jags ended up third right now in my system overall, but I can tell you there's such a huge difference in the mathematical dork point ranking between the top two and the rest of the league, I should really make like spots 3 through 6 blank to show that. Jack Del Rio is my favorite old kook player coach from the '70s/'80s. It's a shame he's tucked away down in shitty Jacksonville where nobody gets to see him and nobody cares when they do since they have such XFL uniform colors. He should really be the coach of a more prominent franchise, preferably in a city with a relentless media so that the pussy but alcoholic nature of newspaper reporters could lovingly live vicariously through Del Rio's retarded ways.

#3: TENNESSEE TITANS (5-2, #6 overall) - Vince Young is the new Michael Vick, and LenDale White is the new lower rent Jerome Bettis. I am sure thousands of Super Bowl banners are in their future. I kinda wonder how retarded Young is in real life though, becasue he's about as darling a young player as you could have, but I know he scored the lowest score ever on that nerd ass Wonderlic test a quarterback ever did, and the only endorsement I can think of seeing him with is his silent helmeted face on the cover of Madden to receive the curse upon his health. I imagine his agent's advice goes like this: "Vince, the less talking you do, the better. Just keep your hair cut with no cornrows or shit like that, and smile, showing your teeth. You have really nice teeth. The public will notice that."

#4: TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (4-4, #9 overall) - It is kinda funny to me the Bucs are on some playoff potential shit behind a couple of almost retireable defensive stars, Jeff Garcia, and a hodgepodge of scrap heap offensive weapons. Like winning the NFC South is gonna be some major accomplishment. The Panthers are in first and they don't even have a for-real quarterback, nor have they won a home game this year. But this is about the Bucs, not the Panthers... Jon Gruden's meandering failings amuse me because he was Mr. Hyped-up Super-Coach of the Future at one point, but he looked like a stupid fuck. If you're 32 and such a fucking football genius, why the fuck aren't you playing football still, genius? Because you're a fucking pussy, that's why. So he scowl all he wants over on the sideline and look like an angry 7-year-old at Chuckie Cheese who's mad his last token of the day didn't get him nothing out The Claw machine, but he ain't hard. That motherfucker masturbates thinking about diagrams with Xs and Os and squiggly lines on dry erase boards.

#5: CAROLINA PANTHERS (4-3, #11 overall) - The Panthers are like my number 2 team, which means I follow them in years when I'm completely disgusted with the Redskins and my homemade voodoo dolls haven't made Dan Snyder's helicopter crash into a river yet. This year, mostly with the Panthers, I get big amusement out of imagining Steve Smith - small, muscular, ultra-competitive super-athlete - and Vinny Testaverde - ugly, aged goomba dude - sitting around together in a nice hotel room on a road game playing Parcheesi. Except it doesn't amuse me so much because last year I used to imagine Smith and Jake Delhomme doing the same shit. I saw a picture of some homemade Parcheesi board all painted like a down's syndrome kid who got into huffing freon painted it, and some fucking over-indulgent housewife shit bought that thing for a bunch more money than something like that should ever be worth. So I've been making homemade Parcheesi boards like that with scraps of 3/4" plywood I find on jobsites and leftover paint from me being a housepainter. I've been meaning to mail one to the Panthers headquarters for Steve Smith, but handwriting a letter holding the pen in my left hand (I'm right-handed) like I'm gonna stab something, to mimic the handwriting of a retarded child, and say how he's my favorite player and I'm a small dude but I'm gonna be a superstar like him one day, please can I have a picture he drew with an autographing? But I just haven't done it yet. Whenever I have the extra money for postage, I just end up buying scratch-off lottery tickets.

#6: NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (3-4, #19 overall) - They, again this year, are a living metaphor for New Orleans itself, as they have been reborn. Their skill players are playing up now, and Reggie Bush - like the bar scene in N.O. - is back up to speed. Only problem is their offensive line is still like the broke ass parts of New Orleans - ragged and pieced together just barely and bound to fall into chaos again at any second. Thus, the Saints may have enough star power to win the NFC South and earn heartwarming playoff bids, they are no potential threat to anyone of serious football intent.

#7: HOUSTON TEXANS (3-5, #21 overall) - The Texans started strong, but then remembered they were the Texans. Matt Schaub was their saviour, and now he got concussed last weekend and might miss next week because of severe headaches, and people don't fuck around with concussions anymore because we don't know their effect on the brain. You know why we don't know? Because we study the brain with our brains. We'll never know for sure. So he should just suck it up and play football. If he dies or gets brain dead or some shit this week from another concussion, then great, they can at least cover up a four-inch part of their hideous uniforms with a nice memorial patch.

#8: ATLANTA FALCONS (1-6, #28 overall) - I always think the coach of the Falcons is married to Tony Soprano's sister. Which then makes me think he shot Michael Vick in the ass one time when Vick met him at the hospital and wanted to give his fledgling rap career a boost with a street shooting. But that's not what happened. I think in this day and age of reality TV, the NFL network should've just jumped already at having a show thrown together called Be the Falcons 3rd String QB. I mean, fuck, if they had started early enough, they could've even had Byron Leftwich on there. But still, you get some washout dudes waiting on calls from NFL teams, some Canadian and Arena league stars, plus a couple of average semi-pro joes with NFL dreams, throw them all together and have them do skills competitions while living in a big shitty apartment building together, then follow whoever gets signed as he all of a sudden is making the NFL minimum of like 37 years of my wages. That would be a great TV show. Also, fuck Arthur Blank the Falcons owner. He owns or used to own or some shit Home Depot, where I bought a riding mower on credit, and I figure I've paid about $8000 so far, and still owe about half the principal on that shit. That means I paid for like three seconds of Michael Vick's contract. I like to pretend it was when he was flicking off the crowd after that one game, but most likely my three seconds was probably like him sitting in the line at Burger King in the off-season listening to a Chris Brown song on the radio. Or just him sleeping on a leather sofa while 106 & Park is on his 86-inch plasma high-def embedded television shit in the background, while a cash loan for your car title commercial is playing. I bet them folks coming out the fake bank with some quick scrilla they borrowed against their Camry looks good as shit in high-def.

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