Big Lead Sports Bar

3/03/2008

The News

Got news? Send it to mondesishouse@gmail.com.

--One of these men just signed a contract worth $102 million. One of these men just gave away $102 million. Yet they're both happy.

Somehow, I still fear that the Steelers will be haunted by the "cheap" label next year only for the fact that we don't chase after other teams' high-ticket free agents as soon as the clock strikes midnight. Feel free to call those people "ignorami".

FYI, the new deal does not specifically prohibit Roethlisberger from riding a motorcycle. It's always good to leave that door open. But I think he's learned his lesson.

By the way, why was Randy Moss' $27 million deal the headline on ESPN and SportsCenter ahead of a deal worth almost four times as much?

--In a nausea-inducing contest at Morgantown, Pitt fell to the WVU Mountaineers, 76-62, on Monday night. It was a lifeless performance from the Panthers, who dropped to 21-9, 9-8 in the process.

There wasn't much to take away from this night for a Pitt fan, other than the fact that Joe Alexander can't score any more points since the game is now over. The junior forward lit up the defense-optional Panthers for 32 points, going 10-16 from the floor.

Levance Fields led Pitt with 15 points while enduring a chorus of "Ta-ser" from WVU fans the entire night. This from a school that hired Bob Huggins. I guess West Virginians don't subscribe to the glass house theory.
Sam Young and DeJuan Blair were in foul trouble for most of the game, as Young fouled out with 7:21 to play. Young finished with 13 and four boards, while Blair added 10 and three in 22 minutes.

The Panthers finish their roller coaster regular season on Sunday versus 10-19 DePaul.

--Ben who? Tom Gorzelanny just got a $33,000 raise! As Plex used to say, "that's long cash".
--If you're a Penguins fan, you have to read this article on Ron Burkle, then try to contain your enthusiasm.

--In NFL free agent news, the Cleveland Browns continued to throw around money in a desperate attempt to become relevant, giving WR Donte Stallworth $35 million/$10 million guaranteed. Considering that this will be Stallworth's fourth stop in the last 27 months, I don't know how amped I'd be for this deal if I were a Cleveland fan. Of course, if I rooted for Cleveland teams, the Donte Stallworth signing would be the least of my problems.

The Browns also added 653 pounds of defensive linemen in the form of Shaun Rogers and Corey Williams, they inked QB Derek Anderson to a three-year deal, and they extended RB/Ex-Con Jamal Lewis for three more seasons as well. Start engraving the Lombardi Trophy tomorrow, right Brownie fans?

To add to the excitement, the Browns were already declared the "Free Agency Winner" by John Clayton, and that's always good. Don't believe me? Then let me take you back to The Professor's 2007 article:

Winners

1. San Francisco 49ers: They are on the right path. After signing cornerback Nate Clements, nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin, linebacker Tully Banta-Cain and safety Michael Lewis, the 49ers are looking more like a 3-4 defense. Franklin will help at nose tackle. Clements matches up against the top receivers on an opposing team. Lewis is a physical safety, and Banta-Cain should improve the team's speed at linebacker. Ashley Lelie will help because he's different from the other San Francisco receivers. He has speed and should be able to help in the red zone. The 49ers aren't done. They still have plenty of money and plenty of draft choices to improve their team.

Well, the 49ers were 5-11. Ashley Lelie's red zone presence added up to 10 catches and no TDs. Tully Banta-Cain had 41 tackles and 3.5 sacks. And with the signings of Clements and Lewis, San Francisco went from a defense that allowed 3,571 passing yards in 2006 to one that allowed 3,643 in 2007. We have a winner!

Clayton had the Patriots at #2, which, in all fairness, was pretty accurate. As for that third "winner"....

3. Miami Dolphins: Talk about attitude. The Dolphins have a 3-4 defense with Jason Taylor, Zach Thomas and Joey Porter. This looks like an AFC Pro Bowl team. Porter was a great signing. Taylor can get the sacks and force fumbles. Porter and Thomas can be the leaders. The other great part of Miami's offseason is that it has acquired three additional draft choices -- in the second, sixth and seventh rounds -- in trades. This franchise traded away too many draft choices over the years and needs to start getting younger. With nine draft choices in hand and good positioning in the draft, the Dolphins are off to a good start.

I won't add any more on the Dolphins blurb, as I would be called out for gratuitous piling on. But if nothing else, this proves that once again, the NFL experts have shown that they know more than us lowly fans. Clayton should just continue to look pretty and tell us about the Steelers' acquisition of T.J. Duckett that's been right around the corner for six years.

Have I excited you yet, Browns fans?
--It's official: Mewelde Moore is a Pittsburgh Steeler. The three-year deal will pay Moore $4.95 million and a $1.35 million signing bonus. Sadly, this signing did not rocket us to the #1 Free Agent Winner.
--The Trib's John Harris says people ignore athletes' good deeds. He cites examples such as Steeler LB Larry Foote, who recently paid for the funeral of a 10-year-old Detroit boy who fell through ice atop a tributary and was pulled out two days later.
--Alexander Ovechkin scored a first-period hat trick and finished with five points in the Capitals' 10-2 win over Boston.

--Robert Irvine, also known as the huge English guy on the Food Network's Dinner Impossible, was let go for apparently embellishing his resume.

--Good news for fans of Family Guy's Cleveland Brown: it looks like he's getting his own spin-off.

--A reader named Eric asked me to post this. And since I do whatever people tell me to do, here it is:

"My buddy and I are looking for table hockey players in the Pittsburgh area to form a stiga league. I participated in a Tournament in Vegas this past January and will be going to Detroit at the end of March. There are some great players across the US in particular Chicago, Detroit and New York. We would love to get something going in Pittsburgh."

If interested, you can reach Eric at eddibacco@landam.com

--Do you know your vintage WWF Action Figures? Then take this quiz. I proudly scored a 12 out of 14.


--How many of you out there have a Grover Body? You know, stick legs, noodle arms, and a gut?




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9 comments:

Scott said...

The Randy Moss deal is far more newsworthy than Ben's, because Moss was a free agent and could have signed anywhere. Ben's extension is relatively small news in comparison. Getting upset about ESPN's coverage of these is blatant homerism.

Evan said...

Leave it to Mondesi to fail to recognize that the Browns are poised to dominate the AFC North this season.

The Browns would have won the AFC North LAST season but for the miserable performance of one Derek Anderson in the last game against Cincinnati. Nevertheless, the Browns missed the playoffs because the Colts rolled over and took it in the pooper against the Titans. (Tuesday Morning Quarterback would refer to the Colts' subsequent playoff demise as "failure to appease the football gods.") The Steelers, however, limped into the playoffs and proceeded to do absolutely nothing besides get pounded, meaning their season was as equally disappointing as the Browns'. No reasonable person would dispute that the Browns' season was a relative success, as compared with a relative failure by the Steelers. Note: Steeler fans are largely unreasonable.

The Browns followed up on their 2007 campaign by re-signing the aforementioned Derek Anderson and Jamal Lewis (who had a very respectable year), trading for Shawn Rogers and Corey Williams, and signing Donte Stallworth. In doing so, the Browns gave their admittedly shameful pass rush some muscle and gave D.A. a legitimate complement to the already dominant tandem of Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow, Jr. While Stallworth has not yet justified his high draft pick status, he is a legitimately talented burner.

What have the Steelers done so far? Well, congratulations, they've made Big Ben one of the highest paid players in the league (concurrently making Mondesi moist) while failing to deliver a payday to the only dependable component of the offensive line, who has moved on to "greener" pastures. Steeler fans, get used to watching Ben run for his life even more than he had to last season. He's going to have to WORK for that $102 million.

But let's not forget Mewelde Moore! Certain to be the savior of the Steelers' offense, Mewelde Moore is... well, he's pretty average; let's be honest. What's that you say, die hard Yinzer? He's a receiving threat out of the backfield? Well, go ahead and throw him a few screen passes, and see what happens! Cringe in fear at the ineptitude of the offensive line to solidly block. Furthermore, I can see it now... every pass thrown the way of Eminem will be another me-first complaint by an increasingly brooding, malcontent Whines Hard. Face it, Steeler fans -- your team has done nothing to improve thus far in the offseason.

A jaundiced Mondesi opines that the Browns are "desperately attempting to become relevant." I retort by saying that they have improved their team. What a concept. Perhaps if the Steelers loosened up the pursestrings on anyone other than Mondesi's walking erection, they might too have managed to improve their team, as opposed to regressing.

Last season is behind us and 2008 is before us. For Browns fans, there is a reason for optimism. The team went 10-6 with an admittedly porous defense. This year, the defense can do nothing BUT improve, and the already potent offense has added another viable weapon. Like it or not, Steeler fans, your seemingly endless stretch of dominance over the Browns WILL END this season. Deep down, you know it's true.

LeeTunnel said...

Wow. I was just going to comment that the NY Giants were a free agency loser in Clayton's article and they worked out ok last year.

But then I had to read Evan's loser diatribe. I guess:

-having 42 years of Super Bowls without ever having made one,
-having your "rival" win 5 and win one recently, (althought the Ravens are really are our biggest rivals, the old Browns, the guys that actually won a SB, who are relevant, not the loser Browns)
-having a rival that makes the playoffs year after year, that kicks the crap out of your team every year, including some real stinging come from behind victories (see this past year and the '03 playoffs)

....makes you a bitter person.

Oh well. Death, taxes, Cleveland sucks.

Mosh Pitt said...

evan-

last year was a disappointment for Pittsburgh how? Because they lost on a last second field goal to the Jags in the play-offs (which you recognize as getting pounded)? Because they won a division they were picked to finish 3rd in?

You really think adding a mildly talented receiver (who made a living last year by catching Moss and Welker's run-off) is going to put the Brownies offense over the top? Oh, I forgot, they resigned a washed up RB too. DA has 1 good season under his belt. 1. It's pretty presumptuous to say he is anything more than a slightly above-average QB in this league until he MAKES THE PLAYOFFS.

Jan said...

Moore is a bandaid to the Steelers running problem. Hope they do better in the draft.

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

I love it when people from other teams come in here and get all bent out of shape when Mondesi rips on their team on a COMEDY sports website.

Once again, emphasis on COMEDY!!

It's not like this is ESP-fucking-N writing this, it's Mondesi.

But some people don't really get the whole "humorous" part of this site so once again we get people coming in here just to have stupid "Steeler/Pitt fans are so dellusional!"-style sports arguements. If I wanted to read that in the comments, I'd go read the lame-ass comments on ESPN.

Evan said...

Oh shortsighted, "living in the glory of seasons past" Yinzers:

I never implied that Derek Anderson was anything better than "slightly better than average." In fact I implied he single-handedly sunk the Browns' season, which may or may not be fair. Nevertheless, he statistically had a nice year, so he should be given the opportunity to lead the team again. Never did I say he was the Browns' savior. Whatever presumption "Mosh Pitt" was mentioning didn't come from me.

Furthermore, the "washed up" Jamal Lewis, while I will forever hate him for being a fantasy bust several seasons ago, had 12 fewer yards on 23 fewer attempts - AND 7 MORE TOUCHDOWNS - than "Fast Willie" Parker. Flush that argument down the "commode," son.

Regarding Stallworth, I said he would be a nice complement as a #3 option to the already unquestionably effective Winslow and Edwards. In fact, I think the moves on defense, particularly the pass rush, are more relevant, as that is the area in which the team most needed to improve.

It would be nice to see some degree of objectivity on this site but I guess since it's based in Pittsburgh it will always have an anti-Cleveland bias. On some level, I can appreciate that, because trust me, Cleveland fans hate you too. But come on Pittsburgh fans, you have to admit (or don't, I frankly don't care) that the Steelers are jettisoning rather vital components of their success and trending down, while the Browns are improving their team and trending up.

okel dokel said...

Evan: Take it somewhere else. This is a Pittsburgh themed site with an emphasis on comedy.

We hate the Browns, the Browns hate us. So F@#$in what!

Cecil from Cecil Twp. said...

On Big Ben, it's like Teddy KGB said, "Pay dat man his money."

Evan, I come to taunt you.

Have the Steelers beaten the Browns 15 of the last 16 times, or is it 16 of the last 17?

I've lost track.