Sunday State of Mind: September 5th-September 11th

Photo: Dreamstime

We continue a longstanding tradition here at UDS by dedicating an entire SSM to Week One NFL action.

Big start on Thursday night, Rams and the Bills
Pregame program was legit, full of fluff and frills
The game was in LA, but plenty Bills fans there
Josh Allen and the boys came out and won the game with flair

Sunday start in the dirty, Falcons and the Saints
Start of football season, we have no complaints
Something so familiar, Falcons had an early lead
They coughed it up and lost, almost guaranteed

Browns and the Panthers, Baker revenge bowl
He wanted to win this game with his entire soul
Browns came out and played, got a surprising win
Panthers almost came back, there’s a positive spin

The San Francisco 49ers are used to good weather
The conditions in Chicago, they were different all together
It rained and rained and rained some more, really came down strong
A nice win for the Bears in a season that might be long

Steelers and the Bengals, an AFC North tilt
Bengals came in walking tall, like a man on stilts
Five turnovers for Joe Burrow, not like him at all
Even so, we had OT, but the Bengals did fall

Eagles and the Lions, closer than we expected!
Coming into the day, thought this game would be neglected
Lions got down early, then almost came back
Lot of money on the Eagles, banks almost attacked

Texans and the Colts, folks we have a tie
Same score in regulation, OT, and then the game died
Feels like a win for Houston, Indy can not be psyched
Have to think a blowout win is what they would’ve liked

Patriots and Dolphins, Miami’s brand new look
Mike McDaniel’s offense had Bill Belichick’s D shook
Tua looked OK, Tyreek and Waddle balled
Dolphin fans ecstatic, Pats fans are appalled

Ravens and the Jets, Flacco revenge game
Cool Joe did play pretty well, can’t give him much blame
Lamar Jackson’s on a mission, wants to get that big money
Three touchdowns and Ravens win, L-Jack sweet as honey

Jags and the Commanders, this game just seemed weird
First game for Carson Wentz in DC, brought his big red beard
Jaguars were close to grabbing a week one win
At least until week two for victories to begin

Giants and the Titans, King Henry and Saquon
The Titan bruised along, Giant looked like a swan
Another crazy comeback, as New York did their job
Titans played tough in the first half, but ended like slobs

Cardinals and the Chiefs, and a new look KC
Went to Arizona, first opportunity
To see if they still had it after losing some big stars
Five tuddy’s for Pat Mahomes, he did not go too far

Chargers and the Raiders, matchup in LA
Justin Herbert is a stud, and he was on display
Three touchdowns and no picks, his team is 1-0
Raiders have a nice roster, only upwards to go

Vikings and the Packers, A-Rod needs to some talent
He can’t go out and win himself, they guy’s only so gallant
Story is not about him though, Vikings looked pretty good
Kirk Cousins was really sharp, was he misunderstood?

Buccaneers and Cowboys, Sunday night in Dallas
Jerry Jones must love it when we’re focused on his palace
Tough break for Big Jer, as Tom Brady is still here
TB12 wins again, will for 100 years

Sunday State of Mind: January 17th-January 23rd

And then there were four. It’s NFL Divisional Playoff Weekend. We recap in this week’s Sunday State of Mind.

The Cincinnati Bengals, also known as Cinderella
Their quarterback Joe Burrow sure is one talented fella
Bengals went down to Nashville, beat up on the Titans
A young team with big talent, NFL should be frightened

Another major upset, Niners over Green Bay
Defense and special teams for San Francisco saved the day
Jimmy Garoppolo has got to be better next week
Otherwise the Niners Super Bowl chances sure look bleak

An NFC West battle, the Super Bowl’s the prize
The Rams came down to Tampa and stuck it in their eyes
Matt Stafford and that defense ended Tom Brady’s year
Rumors are a-floating, will he end his career?

The best for last, Chiefs and Bills
Regulation not enough, overtime thrills
Time and time again, Mahomes comes out a winner
Andy Reid earned himself a nice triple steak dinner

Sunday State of Mind: January 3rd-January 9th

Like an old friend, SSM is back to review the week that was in sports.

First week 18 in NFL history
Helped solved some teams playoff mysteries
Titans and Packers are number one seeds
Lead the AFC and NFC, respectively

Big upset that changed some plans
Jags beat the Colts, now they’re playoff banned
Indy won’t move on, their season is done
An all time choke, they were on such a run

A football tradition, all gas and no breaks
Dolphins beat the Pats in a game with no stakes
A one year playoff hiatus for the Pats
But they’re back in the dance, and that is that

In the “coaches probably fired” Super Bowl
Vikings beat the Bears, Skol skol skol
Mike Zimmer and Matt Nagy, things looking grim
Both coaches and their staffs may get trimmed

Sunday State of Mind: November 15th-November 21st

We are on the brink of Thanksgiving break. Thanksgiving football is one of our greatest traditions. But we’re not here to look forward, but back on the week that was in this week’s SSM.

Jonathan Taylor, leading the way
For the winning Colts, five tuddy Sunday
The losses are piling up for the Bills
A bit of a shocker, team usually kills

A real strange league, this NFL
Often leaves us wondering, “what the hell?”
After winning six straight, and facing Houston
The Titans lost, and their win streak is done

We’ve got new MVPs in the MLB
Bryce and Shohei, unanimously
Neither of these studs made it to the postseason
Baseball’s a weird game, for many strange reasons

It took 17 games to get our first ax
Of the NBA season, Luke Walton’s been sacked
The chronically bad Sacramento Kings
Seem so far away from competing for rings

Sunday State of Mind: September 27th-October 3rd

Photo: ArtStation

It’s been a great week in sports. We look back at the greatness in this week’s SSM.

Big name rookie QBs, getting their first wins
Zach Wilson and Justin Fields, weekend winning twins
Few and far between good days, for Jets and Bears fans
Both fan bases should be glad, they both may have their man

Other end of the spectrum, Big Ben’s very old
The end seems very close, his story has been told
Hard to see a scenario in which he won’t get benched
Steelers have a hard decision, need their QB thirst quenched

Baseball season’s winding down, and it’s playoff time
Time for the big boys in the show to start their World Series climb
Dodgers, Giants, and White Sox, among the other teams
Will do whatever they can to win, by any and all means

Who Wore it Best? 29-20

Photo: Dr. Odd

We’ve arrived at an incredibly important edition of “Who Wore It Best.” In our latest, we’re digging into the roaring 20’s. Let’s find out together who made the cut in this extremely paramount, career-defining list.

29 – Eric Dickerson

Photo: SB Nation

His athletic excellence barely surpassed that of the rec specs. Dickerson put together the greatest single season rushing the football in 1984, going for an NFL record 2,105 yards. He wasn’t just a one season wonder, however. Before being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1999, Dickerson was a five time first team All-Pro, four time rushing leader, has his number 29 retired by the LA Rams, and is in the Indianapolis Colts Ring of Honor.

Honorable Mentions: Adrian Beltre, Ken Dryden, Marc-André Fleury

28 – Marshall Faulk

Back to back running backs who played for the Rams and Colts. Much like Dickerson, Faulk both has his number retired by the Rams as well as being a member of the Colts Ring of Honor. Unlike Dickerson, Faulk has a Super Bowl ring. He also tacked on a MVP, three offensive player of the year awards, as well as three first team All-Pro selections.

Honorable Mentions: Bert Blyleven, Curtis Martin, Darrell Green

27 – Vladimir Guerrero Sr.

Photo: SB Nation

Vlad the Impaler was a 2018 Hall of Fame inductee. He earned his spot in Cooperstown after winning the 2004 MVP, hitting 449 career home runs while maintaining a .318 career batting average, and winning an incredible eight Silver Slugger awards.

Honorable Mentions: Eddie George, Scott Rolen

26 – Rod Woodson

Photo: SB Nation

Rod Woodson was one of the best ball hawks to ever do it; picking off 71 balls in his 17 NFL seasons. He was also a vital member of one of the greatest defenses of all time, the Super Bowl XXXV champion Baltimore Ravens. All of this (and more) cumulated in an induction to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2009.

Honorable Mention: Wade Boggs

25 – Barry Bonds

Photo: CNN

Even before he went to the Giants and things…changed; Barry Bonds was one of the greatest players in baseball. In his seven seasons in Pittsburgh before moving to San Francisco, Bonds was a three time NL MVP, won five Gold Gloves, and five Silver Slugger awards.

Honorable Mention: Fred Biletnikoff

24 – Willie Mays

Photo: Pinterest

Absolute stacked number here, but Mays takes the cake. The stats are gawdy; 660 home runs, 1,903 RBI, and 338 stolen bases. Along the way Mays made 24 All-Star games, won twelve Gold Gloves, two NL MVPs, and a World Series in 1954.

Honorable Mentions: Ken Griffey Jr., Rickey Henderson, Miguel Cabrera, Manny Ramirez, Rick Barry, Champ Bailey, Chris Chelios

23 – Michael Jordan

Photo: Yardbarker

Next question.

Honorable Mentions: LeBron James, Ryne Sandberg, Devin Hester

22 – Emmitt Smith

Photo: USA Today

Emmitt Smith did it all in his 15 NFL seasons. The league’s all time leading rusher (18,355 yards) won three Super Bowls, the 1993 NFL MVP, was a four time first team All-Pro, and lead the NFL in touchdowns three separate seasons.

Honorable Mentions: Clayton Kershaw, Elgin Baylor, Roger Clemens

21 – Deion Sanders

Photo: SFGate

The swagiest swag that ever swagged. Deion was, and still is, one of the most raw athletes we’ve ever seen. He wasn’t too bad on the field either. Prime’s got two Super Bowl rings, six first team All-Pro selections, and is a member of both the 90’s All-Decade and NFL 100th Anniversary Teams. Oh, and he also played in the MLB for nine seasons. He was a .263 career hitter, with 39 home runs, 168 RBI, and 186 stolen bases. Absolute baller.

Honorable Mentions: Roberto Clemente, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, LaDainian Tomlinson, Stan Mikita, Peter Forsberg

20 – Barry Sanders

Photo: Giant Bomb

The twitchiest running back we’ve ever seen, just absolutely stupid stuff. A combo Heisman winner and NFL MVP, the four time first team All-Pro ran for over 15,000 yards and almost 100 touchdowns. Pretty good for a guy who retired early.

Honorable Mentions: Frank Robinson, Mike Schmidt, Gary Payton, Ed Reed, Brian Dawkins

The numbers get lower, and the lists get better. How about 24 and 21 just absolutely cleaning house? All four major sports represented on each. This was a great edition of “Who Wore It Best,” and we can only assume the names will get hotter the next time around.

Sunday State of Mind: May 31st-June 6th

Photo: USA Today

What a week it has been, and we’ve made it to the end. Sunday State of Mind is here to remind us how great it was.

Breaking NFL news, Julio to Tennessee
Henry, Brown, and Jones, a dominant big three
The Titans had to give up a bundle of draft picks
To improve their chances of getting to Super Bowl 56

Jacob DeGrom continues to simply be God status
His right arm should be ruled an illegal apparatus
Through nine starts this season, a 0.62 ERA
Mets should thank their lucky stars every fifth day

NBA Playoffs, first round is now done
Some tasty Western matchups, including Nuggets and the Suns
The Eastern Conference semis also do not suck
Sixers and the Hawks, Nets and the Bucks

Round One Reaction From the NFL Draft

Loud suits, awkward bear hugs, and dreams coming true. The NFL Draft comes around every April and becomes a bigger spectacle every year. Seeing these mutant freak athletes break down and hug mom or family when their name is called never fails to deliver.

On Thursday, we got our annual helping of all of the feels, Roger Godell being weird, and grainy war room footage when the NFL started the clock on their 2021 Draft. Some picks were locks, some were surprises, and we were there for all of it.

1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars: more like Trevor Snorerence, amirite? This pick was made the day Lawrence declared he was leaving Clemson and going to the NFL.

2. Zach Wilson, QB, New York Jets: a small town millennial moves to the big city after college; will he survive or succumb to the pressures of professional life in New York? Turns out it wasn’t the destination that was important, but the journey along the way. Sounds like a rom-com in the making.

3. Trey Lance, QB, San Francisco 49ers: drafting a QB who has barely played in college, what could go wrong?

4. Kyle Pitts, TE, Atlanta Falcons: despite having a god awful defense, you can’t blame the Falcons for drafting a guy that could very well be the best player in this draft fourth overall.

5. Ja’Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals: yeah, no, Joe Burrow doesn’t need a left tackle, he’s fine.

6. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Miami Dolphins: Jaylen careens, dodders, and staggers his way to South Beach.

7. Penei Sewell, OT, Detroit Lions: “Dantallica” has his left tackle, now he just needs a quarterback.

8. Jaycee Horn, CB, Carolina Panthers: this kid has to be good if he came from the loins of the man responsible for one of the greatest celebrations of all time.

9. Patrick Surtain II, CB, Denver Broncos: Surtain’s dad was a stud in Madden 2004, so the kid has to be good right?

10. DeVonta Smith, WR, Philadelphia Eagles: fun fact: Smith’s Heisman Trophy is heavier than DeVonta himself.

11. Justin Fields, QB, Chicago Bears: not here to make a joke about the Bears trading up for a quarterback…that’s old, played out, and I already did it earlier on the Trey Lance pick.

12. Micah Parsons, LB, Dallas Cowboys: Jerr-uh Jones, human embodiment of The Rich Texan from The Simpsons, rangles himself up another solid linebacker.

13. Rashawn Slater, OT, Los Angeles Chargers: Slater gets the best of both worlds; he gets to live in LA and won’t have the pressure of fans showing up to games to boo him if he struggles.

14. Alijah Vera-Tucker, G, New York Jets: the Jets pledge their Alija-nce to their new QB Zach Wilson, by getting him some protection in Vera-Tucker.

15. Mac Jones, QB, New England Patriots: I now have no doubt that Mac Jones will become the greatest quarterback to ever play the game.

16. Zaven Collins, LB, Arizona Cardinals: the worst part about this pick is that we didn’t get a sneak peak into Kliff Kingsbury’s sexy bachelor pad like we did last year.

17. Alex Leatherwood, OT, Las Vegas Raiders: can you imagine the culture shock of moving from Tuscaloosa, Alabama to Las Vegas?

18. Jaelan Phillips, DE, Miami Dolphins: very cool story here; this guy went from retiring in college to a first round pick.

19. Jamin Davis, LB, Washington Football Team: The Washington Football Team picked a football player to play for their football team…football.

20. Kadarius Toney, WR, New York Giants: men with that namesake in the greater New York metropolitan area always take care of business…great pick here by the G-Men.

21. Kwity Paye, DE, Indianapolis Colts: Jim Irsay, as he is known to do, focuses on the line.

22. Caleb Farley, CB, Tennessee Titans: the fact that I get duped into thinking this is Chris Farley anytime I read this guy’s name makes me hate this pick.

23. Christian Darrisaw, OT, Minnesota Vikings: another devout Christian on the Vikings offense.

24. Najee Harris, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers: stop me if you’ve heard this before: “Alabama player drafted in the first round.”

25. Travis Etienne, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars: just like the 2019 Masters, Tigers back in Jacksonville.

26. Greg Newsome II, CB, Cleveland Browns: the second first rounder from Northwestern…what the hell is going on?

27. Rashod Bateman, WR, Baltimore Ravens: Bateman’s quarterback in college looks like he’s twice the age of Lamar Jackson…so he’s got that going for him, which is nice.

28. Payton Turner, DE, New Orleans Saints: Turner’s first name breaks down to “big pay day.” Good things in the future for this guy.

29. Eric Stokes, CB, Green Bay Packers: an inspired pick that will for sure distract all of us from the Aaron Rodgers news.

30. Gregory Rousseau, DE, Buffalo Bills: this dude definitely looks like he could go through some tables.

31. Jayson Oweh, LB, Baltimore Ravens: this guys last name sounds like a surprised Canadian.

32. Joe Tryon, LB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: some pass rush ability for this prospect, but a definite raw talent. The Super Bowl champs are going to take a flyer and try on the linebacker from Washington.

It was a glorious night for the above-mentioned 32 players and their families. After all of the pomp and circumstance of draft night one, it really makes me want to time warp to Week 1 in the fall. Rounds 2-7 will have to do for now.

Sunday State of Mind: December 1-December 6th

Sunday is here, and so is another week of SSM.

Baker Mayfield had himself a day
Four touchdowns, 334 yards, to the Titans’ dismay
The Browns moved to 9-3 on the year
Once in a blue moon the Dawg Pound can cheer

A few big name changes, on Chicago’s North Side
Kyle Schwarber is gone, and Len Kasper has gone for a ride
To The White Sox radio both, Cubs fans were surprised
What’s going on with the Cubs? It’s hard to surmise

A big name trade in the NBA
John Wall for Russell Westbrook, what the hey?!
A few bad contracts, who both wanted to change teams
This trade will only change things in Wizards & Rockets fan’s dreams

Alabama football rolled their rival LSU
The Crimson Tide won by 38, Tigers didn’t have a clue
In this weird COVID season, one thing remains the same
Alabama is good, and they’ll probably win every game

Oh No…

Here we go.

The Titans beat the Vikings 31-30 on Sunday. The win took Tennessee to 3-0 on the year, and dropped the Vikings to 0-3. The result wasn’t exactly the story:

Nooooooooooooo!

This is the first outbreak we’ve seen since the NFL came back three weeks ago. According to the AP, three Titans players and five personnel tested positive for the coronavirus (as of now). Both teams will completely shut down for the foreseeable future. Of course the Titans with the positive tests, and correctly the Vikings due to being in close proximity to the Titans.

The most important thing here is that thus far everyone is safe. As long as that’s the case, the next thing you worry about is the schedule & season getting totally wrecked. The Steelers are scheduled to come to Nashville to play the Titans this coming Sunday. The Vikings are supposed to go on the road to play the Texans.

With the prototypical quarantine period being 14 days, this could absolutely muck up the NFL season moving forward. Unlike baseball, you can’t really squeeze any double headers in a day, let alone a week. Stretching this out a bit, you start to think how this would effect playoff seedings if teams end up not playing the same number of games, the spider web of contact tracing if the Titans and Vikings continue to play, etc.

This was a gamble that the NFL, and honestly all sports, took when deciding to come back when they did. I would hope Roger Godell and the big brains running the show out of the NFL’s headquarters in Manhattan have a safe and logical back up plan to make sure the season can safely move forward.