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Troy Smith, Mike Singletary, Ted Ginn, and an Argument Featuring a Towel (Video)

What a mess the 49ers have become this season. They don’t know who their quarterback is, but they have a pretty good idea it’s someone with the last name Smith. At the conclusion of the season, they won’t know who their head coach is.  Troy Smith probably gave the Niners a better chance to win than Alex Smith, but neither has proven he can be a capable NFL starter.  With a loss to the Rams on Sunday, San Francisco squashed any hopes it had of making the postseason and Mike Singletary effectively placed an expiration date on his 49ers head coaching career.

To make matters even more embarrassing, Singletary had a blowout with T. Smith on the sideline during Sunday’s game.  Ted Ginn got involved, too.  By involved I mean he shoved a towel in Smith’s face in an attempt to get him to stop arguing with the head coach.  Check out the Mike Singletary and Troy Smith sideline fight video:

I wonder if they were arguing over who will find a job first when they both inevitably lose theirs.

The Patriots Are Experts in Ball Security

The New England Patriots have clinched the No. 1 seed in the AFC, giving them home field advantage and a first-round bye.  With the Falcons yet to have played on Sunday, the Pats own the NFL’s best record (13-2) after demolishing the Bills.  Plenty of people thought New England would be good, but there aren’t many who thought they’d be this good.  The secret?  Protecting the football.

The Patriots came into Sunday’s game against Buffalo leading the NFL with a plus-20 turnover differential.  They added seven turnovers to that total and went yet another game without committing one of their own.  That means New England now has a whopping plus-27 turnover differential and has not turned the ball over since a week nine loss to the Browns.

The NFL record for fewest turnovers in a season is 12.  New England has committed a league-low 9 this season.  The only way they won’t set the record is if Bill Belichick decides to rest Brady next week against the Dolphins, which he has not been known to do.  The Patriots’ franchise record for fewest turnovers in a season is 17, which they will obviously shatter.

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Oakland Raiders Nation a Bunch of Frauds

When you think of some of the most passionate, hardcore, dedicated fans in sports, Raiders fans inevitably come to mind. They were the pioneers of the ___ Nation term, originating the “Raider Nation,” which has since been mimicked by several other fan bases. They have one of the most intimidating fan areas around – the Black Hole – located in one of the end zones. You dare wear a jersey of another team into the Black Hole, you risk not coming out. Being a Raiders fan is not merely a whimsical choice; it’s a culture and way of life.

But as intimidating and strong of a fan base as the Raiders have, their attendance record in Oakland does not correspond. Their Sunday game against the Colts – with the team at 7-7 and still in the playoff hunt no less – is being blacked out because the game did not sell out. That marks the 7th time in eight games that the Raiders failed to sell out a game, resulting in a local blackout.

I ask, how can that be the case?

If Raiders fans are as badass, faithful, and intimidating as they’d like you to believe, you figure the least they’d be able to do is sell out a home game, especially when the team is pretty good, right? That’s not too much to ask, is it Raiders fans?

Man, if the powder blue and gold Chargers are managing to sell out games, how are you not? Poor form Raiders fans, poor form, and I don’t want to hear another thing about how strong the Raider Nation is until they sell out a game.

Donte’ Stallworth Wins Award for Courage

Wide reciever Donte’ Stallworth recieved the Ed Block Courage Award for the Baltimore Ravens this year. The award has been given to one player from each NFL team every year dating back to 1984. According to the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation, it goes to “players who exemplify commitments to the principles of sportsmanship and courage.” The players vote on which of their teammates they feel most meets the criteria.

I don’t get it. On March 14, 2009, Stallworth was driving drunk when he struck and killed a pedestrian — 59-year-old Mario Reyes. Reyes was said to be crossing the road illegally, but that does not change the fact that Stallworth was under the influence behind the wheel. Who’s to say that he couldn’t have reacted quickly enough to prevent the accident had he been sober? Stallworth reportedly reached a financial settlement with the Reyes’ family for an undisclosed sum and served 24 days of a 30 day prison sentence. He was also suspended for one season by the NFL before being signed by the Ravens at the beginning of the season

Gregg Rosenthal of Pro Football Talk informed us that Stallworth had won the award, saying “Stallworth made a huge mistake in life and paid a steep price for it.” A steep price? He killed a man and he was out of jail in less than a month and back in the NFL a year later. Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg and can’t get approved for a work release. Burress got two years because he could have hurt or killed someone and was carrying an unregistered gun. Stallworth actually kill someone and got less than a month. Then his teammates give him an award for his “courage”?

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Giants DE Dave Tollefson Called Soft by Mother Debra Crocker After Injury

No matter how much a coach, teammates, or opposing players are picking on a guy, there’s always that one person there to lend support — mom. Mom is there no matter what. She’s the one who takes you out for ice cream after you struck out with the bases loaded to end the game, telling you you’ll get ‘em next time. She’s the one who will wash your uniform even if you didn’t get it dirty because you were on the bench. She’s the one most concerned when you get hurt during a game.

Unless your mom is Debra Crocker.

Crocker flew from California out to New Jersey to watch her son, Dave Tollefson, play Sunday against the Eagles. The Giants defensive end got hurt during the game and headed to the locker room. He also heard from his mom at that point:

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Mike Shanahan Would Take Donovan McNabb As a Backup Next Season

Make no mistake about it — Donovan McNabb is not going to be a Washington Redskin next season.  That does not, however, mean the offer isn’t on the table.  McNabb has been openly frustrated about Mike Shanahan’s decision to bench him in favor of Rex Grossman, but Shanahan told The Washington Post he would welcome McNabb back next season — as a backup.

That would be the day.  To backtrack a bit, the Redskins have gone from offering McNabb a massive contract extension which was comparable to Tom Brady’s, to offering him a role on the bench next season.  Donovan may not be in the best shape of his career nor in his prime, but he is still a very capable NFL starter if utilized the right way.

Shanahan acknowledge that he doubts McNabb staying on board as a backup quarterback is a possibility, but I don’t think there was any need to say it in the first place.  For one thing, it’s insulting to a guy who has been one of the better quarterbacks in the league this decade and has led teams to a number of significant playoff victories. On the other hand, it limits McNabb’s trade value. 

The Redskins gave up draft picks to acquire McNabb in what appeared to be a franchise-altering deal.  Now, Shanahan is openly informing other teams that he has no place on the team next year, effectively forfeiting any leverage he may have had on the trade market.

Roddy White Warns Saints on Twitter: They Think They’re Hot S***

With a huge Monday night game ahead between the Saints and Falcons, it’s good to know Atlanta star Roddy White is avoiding all the distractions of trash talk and focusing solely on the game. Maybe not. White, the NFL’s leading receiver, took issue with a Trent Dilfer prediction on ESPN that the Saints would beat the Falcons at the Georgia Dome, and then beat them in the playoffs too. White disagreed on his twitter account, and that apparently angered several fans.

Roddy went off after that:

“The grace of god gave them tht championship so tht city wouldn fall apart now and now they think they hot #!@%*# in my chad voice child please

The first time we played them their coach gone say after we won the game thts a good win for yall like the saints are the colts …

The saints win one championship and want to go crazy well yall ass aint winning this year we gone make sure tht doesn’t happen”

If Sean Payton didn’t give the Falcons much credit for the win the first time, maybe it’s because he was pissed kicker Garrett Hartley missed a 29-yard field goal in overtime that would have won the game for New Orleans. At any rate, the Falcons can take control of the situation by proving to the Saints who the top team in the division is. The Saints have earned the reputation by winning the Super Bowl and it’s on Atlanta to defeat the defending champs. White later got upset with the Atlanta Journal Constitution, but it’s hard to figure out why.

The bottom line: for those of you in the business of picking NFL games, it’s been confirmed the Falcons will bring their best effort on Monday night.