Aaron Murray Fits in Kansas City

aaron_murrayAaron Murray’s NFL Career Begins
The Kansas City Chiefs selected former Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft.  Murray’s new football home will afford him the opportunity to work with an experienced head coach in Andy Reid, and learn from former #1 overall draft pick, Alex Smith.

The Pressure on Aaron Murray to Succeed Will be Minimal
The Chiefs won 11 games in 2013.  Kansas City features arguably the most explosive running game in the National Football League, led by Jamaal Charles, and the KC defense was dominant for much of last season.  Aaron Murray needs time to grow as a professional, which is why going to a storied NFL franchise is the best thing for the former Georgia quarterback.

As reported by ESPN, KC coach Andy Reid, and general manager John Dorsey have a successful history of drafting and developing quarterbacks at the professional level.  Both Reid and Dorsey are entering their second year as head Chiefs, and they helped the team improve its win total by nine games in their first season.

#11 Feels KC’s Selection is Mutually Beneficial
Assuming Kansas City continues to trend upward, there is hardly a better situation for Aaron Murray to properly cultivate his skill set.  According to the aforementioned ESPN article, Murray is excited about where he ended up following last weekend’s draft.  “It’s a great fit, I’m not complaining one bit…They do a heck of a job preparing quarterbacks”.

Important Information On Andy Reid and John Dorsey
Andy Reid is best known for his time as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.  As the head coach in Philly from 1999-2012, Reid guided the Eagles to four NFC Championship appearances.  The Eagles only appeared in one Super Bowl though, losing to the Patriots 24-21 in the 2006 Super Bowl.

Donovan McNabb was the starting quarterback for the bulk of the time Andy Reid led the Eagles.  While Philadelphia never quite grabbed that elusive championship ring, Reid’s belief in McNabb as his QB propelled Donovan to heights that not many saw coming out of college.

John Dorsey was the director of college scouting for the Green Bay Packers when the team last won a world championship in 2011.  He is credited with drafting players such as Green Bay starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers, and standout linebacker Clay Matthews.  When asked what led the Chiefs to pick Aaron Murray, Dorsey said, ““He’s a winner. He’s been a winner at every stage that he’s played between high school and college”.

There is no doubt that the beloved Bulldog alum is facing an uphill battle, but he possesses all the tools necessary to get to the top of the NFL mountain.

Fair Weather Fans and Georgia Football

Bulldog Nation Should Never Lose Faith in the Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia football makes fall Saturdays in Athens come alive with throngs of people wearing red and black while shouting “Go Dawgs” at the top of their lungs. The passion for college football in Dixie is undeniable, at least until Georgia loses a game or three. Disappointment when the Bulldogs come up short is only natural, but to give up on a season or the team is a cardinal sin I will never commit.

fair_weather_uga_fan

Somebody made this poor child watch our last two games against South Carolina.

College Football Season is Short and Sweet
One of the reasons I love college football so much is because every college football Saturday is crucial in shaping the season. I would rather have an arm lopped off than to miss a UGA football game. Conversely, if one were to miss the tenth Braves game of the year, who cares? You have over 140 more opportunities to enjoy America’s pastime.

The Atlanta Braves Spoiled Fans Who in the ’90s
At this point I must admit that I am a fair weather baseball fan. My only defense (and I do not claim it to be a good one) is that the Atlanta Braves’ streak of 14 consecutive division titles started in 1991 and lasted through my freshman year of college. Seeing Atlanta win the NL East so many times in my childhood spoiled me. However, following the horrible infield fly call that ended the Braves’ season in 2012 and adding both Justin and B.J. Upton to the roster, I am excited about the possibilities for 2013. Early fair weather forecast for the Braves: Sunny, with a 75% chance of a National League pennant this fall.



I’m a Georgia Bulldog Football Fan For Life
I could never jump on and off of the bandwagon as it relates to my beloved Georgia Bulldogs. When the Dawgs lost to Colorado in 2010 by a final score of 29-27 thereby extending their losing streak to four games I was disgusted. Still, I was in front of the television the very next Saturday irrationally yelling in support of Georgia football.

Just because I find fair weather Georgia football fandom appalling does not make me a better fan than anyone else who roots on the Bulldogs. My devotion means it will be much more significant for me when the Bulldogs finally do break through and win a national championship (preferably several) in my lifetime. Georgia winning a national championship has been discussed frequently on this blog because it is something that we have always wanted to see and I will be a devoted Dawg fan for as long as I live.

The 2012 Atlanta Falcons Fell Short of Greatness

In the End, Matty Ice Melted
The first quarter of this past weekend’s NFC Championship Game could not have been more exciting for Atlanta Falcons fans. The home team was a four point underdog, but Matt Ryan and company jumped out to a 17 point lead before the 49ers ever knew what hit them. By halftime Atlanta knew they were in for a fight from Colin Kaepernick and hard-hitting San Francisco, but even the most jaded Atlanta fan had to feel good about a ten point lead with thirty minutes to play. However, as the third quarter got under way, Matty Ice began to melt. The hopes of the Atlanta Falcons faithful unraveled along with him.

When can we stop being mocked by a member of the opposing team using the Dirty Bird?

Matt Ryan is one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Even so, he picked a horrible time to play what was arguably the worst half of his professional career. The interception that he threw was costly, but the well executed snap that he fumbled may haunt him until the Atlanta Falcons finally rise up to a Super Bowl appearance.

If You Ain’t First, You’re Last
I had to borrow a line from Ricky Bobby to capture my feelings about this football season. It was a great year, but the Falcons fell short of their ultimate goal. The 2012 Dirty Birds won thirteen regular season games, a division title, and they secured home field advantage. Obvious positives not withstanding, Atlanta still does not have a Lombardi Trophy, and Arthur Blank will have to wait (at least) another year for a championship parade.

Want in One Hand and Crap in the Other. See Which Fills Up First
I must admit that sour grapes is not a good color on me but I wanted a canvas to express my frustration and this is it. All the pining in the world will not bring a Super Bowl victory to Atlanta. The Falcons must actually be good enough to win it.  As we inch ever closer to the Harbaugh Super Bowl, my misery is compounded. Two weeks of stories about brothers coaching against each other in the biggest game on the National Football League calendar. Riveting.

Hope Springs Eternal in Hotlanta
One of my favorite things about being an avid sports fan is that nothing is permanent. There is always next season and no matter how frustrating or disheartening it may get, I will have the privilege of watching the Georgia Bulldogs and Atlanta Falcons attempt to grab the brass ring once again. Part of the joy of winning is watching your team grow from a crushing defeat to achieve the ultimate goal. This fall will be a very intriguing time to be a football fan in the Peach State. 

The upcoming 49ers-Ravens Superbowl has been nicknamed Superbaugh by ESPN. it is going to be a long two weeks.

The Atlanta Falcons Should Thank Bobby Petrino for Leaving

matt_ryan

We can thank Bobby Petrino for an awful season that allowed the Falcons to draft Matt Ryan.

The Atlanta Falcons and Matt Ryan Finally Win a Playoff Game
Following their biggest victory in nine years, it is only fitting to examine where this now proud franchise was just over a half decade ago. In 2007, Bobby Petrino had built a proud college program at Louisville, throwing the ball all over the field with quarterbacks such as Brian Brohm. Following 8-8 and 7-9 seasons respectively that felt a lot like a football version of the movie Groundhog Day, the Falcons fired then head coach Jim Mora Jr. Atlanta owner Arthur Blank set out on a coaching search that led him to Bobby Petrino, who vowed to turn the Michael Vick experience into a complete quarterback.

After Bobby Petrino Arrived, Michael Vick Never Played Another Down as a Falcon
Unfortunately for Bob-O, he never got the opportunity to coach Michael Vick, because Vick was incarcerated during the offseason.  So began the miserable Bobby Petrino experiment in Atlanta. As hard as it was on Petrino, it was probably even more difficult for us fans. After all, we had to go from watching Michael Vick electrify “Hotlanta” to witnessing Joey Harrington’s last ditch effort for success in the National Football League.

The Task of Rebuilding the Atlanta Falcons was too Much for Bobby Petrino
Bobby Petrino’s only season in the NFL was abysmal. It was so terrible that he did not even spend a whole season as the coach of the Falcons. After coaching just thirteen regular season games in the National football league, Petrino took his ball and went to Arkansas. He is a quitter, but it is hard to blame him. He thought he was getting the chance to coach Michael Vick, instead Atlanta ended up with a miserable concoction of Joey Harrington, Byron Leftwich, and Chris Redman at the quarterback position. If I were Petrino, I probably would have fled, too.

Bobby Petrino,Thank you for Leaving Atlanta When you did
Bobby Petrino’s decision to leave Atlanta opened the door for Mike Smith, Thomas Dimitroff, Matt Ryan and Michael Turner. Without having a terrible year in 2007, it is highly unlikely that the Falcons would have ended up with their current personal. It has taken a little bit longer than the Atlanta faithful would have liked, but the Falcons have reached the NFC Championship. Thanks, in some small part, to Bobby Petrino’s desire to be a pig.

Bobby Petrino Should Learn to be More Careful on his Motorcycle
I would be remiss not to provide an update on how old Bob-O is doing these days. For those of you that somehow missed it, Petrino went whee-whee-whee off of his motorcycle and landed on his face. A female intern was on the back of said motorcycle at the time of the incident. I have found hilarious video footage of the press conference that Bobby Petrino had just a few days after the accident.



Petrino has found work yet again, as he was hired by the University of Western Kentucky. Good luck to Bobby Petrino and the Hilltoppers. (sounds like some sort of a band) More importantly, go Dirty Birds, the state of Georgia could use another big win.

Profiles in Courage: Joe Girardi Pinch-Hits for A-Rod

 

Don’t mess with me…I pinch-hit for Alex Rodriguez…and lived to tell about it.

October 10, 2012. 50,497 Yankees fans roaring. Millions of viewers tuning in.  The stage is Game 3 of the ALS Division Series between the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles.  Yankees down 2-1 with one out in the bottom of the ninth and Alex Rodriguez due up.  Girardi pinch hits for super-star $305 million A-Rod with Johnny Damon Raul Ibanez.  What happened next (and then next again) will be the stuff of legend for years to come.

Rodriguez had not been pinch-hit for since high school.  On this night however, it was time for Rodriguez to take a break driver eight.  Yes, the man with 647 career homeruns and almost 2,000 career RBIs was being asked to stand down.  Low-ball hitter Raul Ibanez delivered, driving a 1-0 pitch deep into the night for the game-tying home run…and A-Rod wasa right there greeting Ibanez at the top step of the dugout with a high-five and hug.

The Finish…Ibanez in the 12th.  40-year old DH Ibanez took Orioles pitcher Brian Matusz’ first pitch into Yankees history with his second home run (this one a walk-off winner) in two at bats and total of three pitches.  Yankees win one for the ages.

Final Note on Kobe Bryant. Laker guard apparently didn’t like Girardi having the stones to pinch-hit Ibanez for A-Rod.  Bryant had this to say: “I don’t like that.  That’s not good for the chemistry of the team. I’m going to have to call A-Rod.”

Kobe Bryant acting like a clown…does your ego know no bounds?  Call A-Rod if you want, but Joe Girardi calls the shots for the men in pinstripes in Yankee-Town.

Wildcard Game 2012: Atlanta Braves vs. St. Louis Cardinals – Chipper’s Error Not His Legacy

Note: We are UGA Bulldog-centric…but we are also red-blooded sports fans and the Braves figure squarely in this.

In the top of the 4th inning of today’s Wildcard game between the Atlanta Braves and St. Louis Cardinals, Chipper Jones turned a sure double play into a throwing error, fueling a three run half of the inning for the Cardinals.  As I watched Chipper Jones’ reaction after the error, I wondered if his thoughts turned to the possibility that his costly mistake in what could be his final game would be his most painful memory on the field with the Braves.  Perhaps…perhaps not.

A reputation, good, bad, or otherwise, is not predicated upon one play (unless perhaps you are Bill Buckner).  The Braves win or lose as a team.  Regardless of the outcome of 2012, every Atlanta Braves fan should be thankful for what we have, and have had: