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Randy Moss’ Second Stint With Vikings Could Be a Brief One

When the Patriots decided they could no longer deal with Randy Moss being Randy Moss and traded him to the Vikings, it looked like he was moving into another situation where he was certain to thrive.  Brett Favre has always wanted to play with Moss, and it was reasonable to assume that the two would develop an immediate chemistry and put on a show.  Don’t worry, I’m not getting too far ahead of myself.  I know there’s still time for that to happen and they got off to a decent start on Monday night against the Jets, but the situation looks like it’s getting worse by the day.

Favre has found himself having to deal with Tiger Woods-type distractions.  As if it’s not difficult enough for Old Man Brett to have to answer questions about a game he just completely blew, Favre was forced to deflect questions about sexting Jenn Sterger on Monday night.  As if the Jenn Sterger saga wasn’t enough, Favre has been accused of similar behavior by another former Jets employee.  Who knows where it will end.

Let’s pile some more on, shall we?  Favre is also supposedly dealing with an injured elbow that he has described as “very painful.”  The injury comes at a time when the Vikings are already headed in the wrong direction and find themselves facing a must-win against the Cowboys this weekend.  Brett says he won’t “play just to play,” and that if he can’t make the throws he’s willing to sit out a game.

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Jacksonville Going All Out for Monday Night Football with ‘Teal Monday’

As much as we talk about fans getting screwed over — e.g. Red Sox fans seeing parking prices go up — it must be recognized when a team and city does something great for its citizens. The Jacksonville Jaguars are hosting the Tennessee Titans on Monday Night Football this week (I know, you can’t wait for it), and the city is going all out for the game. Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton has declared the day as “Teal Monday” in Jacksonville and is encouraging all citizens and companies to show their Jaguars pride by attending the game, wearing teal and closing businesses early.

They have several different promotions planned for the game. Fans wearing Jags t-shirts will get a free drink at the team’s official tailgate. Several downtown bars will offer happy hour prices all night. They’ll be selling Jags t-shirts for $5 and offering $1 beer specials at the pregame tailgate. Also, and I’ve never really heard of this before, they are inviting all the fans to sing the National Anthem (calling it the 12th man). The whole evening sounds like it will be a lot of fun and has me so amped up I want to fly out to Jacksonville for the game!

It’s no secret that the Jags are hurting when it comes to fan support. They were ranked dead last in terms of popularity as a team based on a recent Harris Poll, and they had trouble selling tickets last year. This is exactly what a team should do to try and energize a fan base. Just think, the swell of fervor is due in large part to the thrilling win over the Colts.

LBS NFL Power Rankings Week 6

1. New York Jets (4-1, +1)

Mark Sanchez has gotten very good at managing games and the defense continues to play the way we expected it to. Many expected the Vikings to go off after acquiring Randy Moss, but the Jets were able to beat them in a huge Monday night game. The Vikings were dealing with distractions, but the Jets look like the best team in the NFL after losing a one-point game to Baltimore week one.

2. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-1, -1)

The Steelers drop one spot after the bye week only because the Jets continued to impress. Adding Ben Roethlisberger to an offense that hasn’t been able to throw the ball — although it hasn’t needed to — should be a huge shot in the arm and only make them better.

3. Baltimore Ravens (4-1, +1)

The Ravens took care of business at home with a convincing victory over the Broncos. More importantly, Ray Rice proved he’s perfectly healthy with over 100 yards and two scores. We’ll find out even more when they travel to New England next weekend.

4. Atlanta Falcons (4-1, +1)

Michael Turner appears to be back on track and the Falcons are quietly emerging as the best team in the NFC. Their schedule has been somewhat soft, but any 10-point road victory in the NFL commands respect — even if it’s over the Browns.

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Colt McCoy Likely to Start for Browns

When Jake Delhomme entered the Browns’ game against the Falcons last weekend right before halftime, he said Atlanta’s players were smelling blood in the water. That’s because Delhomme already had a sprained ankle and had to get painkilling injections just to be able to back up Seneca Wallace. Wallace was knocked out with a sprained ankle as well, and the hobbled Delhomme ended up adding a low ankle sprain to go along with his high ankle sprain.

Without Delhomme and Wallace available this weekend (damned sprained ankles!), the Browns signed former Jets quarterback Brett Ratliff and reportedly told Colt McCoy that he was starting, according to Chip Brown via Rotoworld. McCoy, who did not look good in the preseason, could not be drawing a tougher assignment for his first career start — the Steelers, healthy and coming off a bye week, in Pittsburgh.

McCoy was 28/39 for 232 yards with no touchdowns, two picks, and two fumbles in the preseason. While the numbers aren’t pretty, at least Colt improved as the preseason went on and he turned in a 13/13 performance in the team’s finale. Right now the Steelers are a 14-point favorite in the game. They have Ben Roethlisberger making his season debut Sunday. The Browns may have Colt McCoy making his NFL debut. I’ll take the Steelers minus the points, thank you very much.

Photo Credit: J. Meric/Getty Images

Brett Favre Dodges Jenn Sterger Questions, Says Arm Hurts

Brett Favre was his typical self on Monday night. He made plays to get his team back in the game, and then he made plays to take his team out of it. The man could have found Tahi for the two-point conversion but missed him, missed a wide open Percy Harvin in the final drive, and then he threw a pick six to seal the deal. Favre did what only he can — get your hopes up only to let you down, screwing over Doc Brown in the process, who had an otherwise nearly flawless week.

The true heartbreak kid was also the star of the show after the game. Standing at the podium answering questions from the media, Favre was regularly asked about the NFL’s investigation into the sexual harassment and penis photos. He declined to get into the issue, persistently trying to turn the topic back to football. Favre seemed uncomfortable every time someone pressed him on it and he truly seemed to be acting guilty. Thing is, Favre loves the spotlight and to be the center of attention so much he remained at the podium to continue talking and taking questions and he didn’t shut up until the P.R. director ended the conference.

Aside from dodging the Jenn Sterger questions, Favre also said his arm hurt more after this game than it had all year. He was seen grabbing his elbow towards the end of the game in obvious pain. Some might look at this as one of Favre’s annual excuses, but the injury seemed legit. Lastly, Brett confirmed he had been dreaming about Jenn Sterger throwing touchdown passes to Randy Moss for the past 8-10 years and that’s why he was so excited after the touchdown. He may have connected on that bomb, but in the end he did what he always does — break your heart.

Randy Moss Says He and Tom Brady Are Cool, Still Buddies

Even though the Vikings lost in his team debut, Randy Moss was more than accommodating to the media after the Monday night game. The sometimes aloof and often problematic receiver spoke honestly and was somewhat charming in his straightforward comments after the game.

When asked about Brett Favre, Moss says he stays out of his teammates’ personal business and that he just tries to be a friend to them. When asked about the Jets’ cornerback duo of Antonio Cromartie and Darrelle Revis, he was highly complimentary of the tandem and gave an honest assessment of their abilities. Moss also talked about his rapport with second-year receiver Percy Harvin, whom he ensured he’s not there to take his spot but to help him learn. He also raved about the talent on the team and how he watched Percy Harvin and Adrian Peterson when they were in college.

The man was so engaging, it was hard to envision this was the same player who had problems in New England and somewhat went off the rails on occasion.

As for the juicy stuff, Moss was asked about the report that he and Tom Brady went toe-to-toe the week before he was traded. Moss essentially laughed off the question, saying “Tom sent me a text today. Tom, I know you watching buddy, I appreciate that text. Sorry we didn’t bring it home buddy, but I appreciate the text.”

It was pretty obvious that the two are still on very good terms and still think very highly of one another. The text message and Moss’ endearment towards Brady doesn’t mean they didn’t get into a shouting match the week before the trade, but it does mean there were no hard feelings. I still have no reason to believe the report wasn’t true. I said it before and I’ll say it again, maybe if they were throwing him the ball in New England he wouldn’t have grown upset with the team. It’s that simple.

Deion Branch Returns to Patriots

A long-time rumor finally came to fruition Monday night as ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Patriots have decided to bring back wide receiver Deion Branch.  Schefter’s sources say the Patriots exchanged a 2011 fourth round pick for the veteran receiver, who will practice with the team on Tuesday.

As soon as the Patriots dealt Randy Moss, speculation began building that New England may make a run at the Super Bowl XXIX MVP.  Branch has openly stated that he would welcome a return to the team that drafted him, and he and Tom Brady have remained close friends during Branch’s time with the Seahawks.  It’s no secret that Branch doesn’t possess the talent that Moss has, but the chemistry he and Brady built during his tenure with the Patriots could make up for what he’s lacking in actual skill.

If the Patriots are trying to rediscover their old identity, this would seemingly be a step in the right direction.  I highly doubt there would ever be any rumors of Branch and Brady arguing over beards and hair styles, and there’s no doubt No. 12 will be pleased with the front office for bringing back his boy.  Whether or not the two can reemerge as one of the better wide receiver-quarterback duos in the league remains to be seen.