It’s Super Bowl week in New York City and I’ve been up here since Monday.
In case you’re wondering what the Super Bowl is like, it’s basically adult spring break. I’m staying at the Bud Light Hotel cruise ship, which I will write about extensively early next week, but in the meantime just know that last night we got to see Kings of Leon, Naughty By Nature, Busta Rhymes, RUN DMC and the Roots.
That was all in one night.
Oh, and my wife got to meet Bill Murray, which I think validated her decision to marry me. She’s seen the movie “What about Bob?’, conservatively, a billion times. And my kids love Ghostbusters. So now we can go back to Nashville and tell both boys that we went to New York City and met one of the Ghostbusters.
So, no surprise, Bill Murray is our beaver pelt trader of the week.
Bill L. writes:
“The question in last week’s mail bag regarding you as a linebacker was similar to something I’ve wondered for a while. Let’s assume a situation where you or I, an individual with little to no athletic ability but still in somewhat decent shape, were placed at running back. In this situation you have the ten best offensive players in the NFL plus you on the offensive side, and on the defensive side is the NFLs most average defense (neither great or horrible). The ball is nearly on the goal line already so all you have to do is cross the line of scrimmage. Let’s say you only get one play and the ball has to go to you. To make the stakes high so the players will care the players on the winning side get $10 million a year for the rest of their lives, and the losing players have to live in Somalia for the rest of their lives. Would you or I be able to score with the absolute best offensive players on the planet blocking for us, or would we be eaten alive back on the two yard line by the average NFL defense?”
First, let’s start with the averages. An NFL offense would score on 4th and goal from inside the one about 60% of the time. That’s essentially what we have here. So the odds favor the offense if a regular NFL running back is in the game. But even a really good NFL running back would get stopped here 40% of the time. You, me, and the thousands of regular guys reading this mailbag right now are infinitely worse than the worst running back in NFL history.
We are also soooo slow.
This means there is a zero percent chance that you or I could score running wide at all. No tosses, no stretch plays, you’d be dead on arrival on any of those plays. The defenders would just be too quick to react. Don’t even think about attempting to score here, you are not beating anyone in the NFL’s back seven to the corner.
The only possible way a regular guy could score is by taking the handoff and going straight ahead. But keep in mind that you are starting seven yards behind the line of scrimmage and the defense would be stacked with the goal line defense. That means they’d probably get decent penetration on the point of attack because you’d take longer to get to the line than a regular back. (Plus, you have to field the hand off correctly, which would probably be terrifying. Think about how often in these situations a talented running back gets stonewalled because someone misses a block).
I can only imagine what would happen if an NFL defensive tackle had to move to Somalia if he didn’t collapse the pocket. So even with the best NFL offensive line, the pocket’s getting collapsed. And this is the NFL’s most average defense, the 16th best in the league. That’s still a defense that’s very good against the run. Just about every NFL defense is good against the run, especially a top half defense.
So I’d say the average guy probably scores less than 5% of the time running the football. And the only way you could score would be by taking the handoff and immediately extending the ball when you got close to the pile. With a full head of steam you might be able to break the plane before you were knocked unconscious. And you might as well fumble anyway.
Now I actually think the highest percentage play — and by the way, the NFL defense has to believe that you are a legit NFL player because if they know you have to score on this play, there is a zero percent chance you’d ever score because it would mean they don’t have to defend anyone else, thereby negating your talented offensive weapons — would be a throwback pass.
Here’s how it would work, the entire play rolls right or left and everyone goes in that direction.
At the snap, you pretend to fall down. The play rolls away from you, leaving you on the ground. The defense scrambles to cover your super talented wide receivers and a tight end. The entire line rolls too. Then, you suddenly spring up and run for the end zone, whereupon the quarterback throws all the way back across the field to a — hopefully — wide open running back. Now, you’d have to catch the ball, but if the play worked you’d be all alone. If the play didn’t work you’d get destroyed or the defensive player would pick off the pass and go 100 yards for a touchdown.
But I think there’s a decent chance this play would work about 20% of the time.
Unfortunately, even without anyone on him, the average guy probably drops the ball about one in four times.
So that means 15% of the time you’d succeed with this play.
I don’t think there’s anyway you could get a higher percentage.
Jim K. writes:
“Have Southerners always panicked when it snowed? Throughout history, even?”
With the recent collapse of Birmingham and Atlanta thanks to a couple of inches of snow, it’s a valid question.
I’m certain that cars and snow in the South have always meant disaster so that means that for the last 90 or so years, snow has doomed us all to the white death. But what about back in the day of horses and boats? If you worked at Andrew Jackson’s law firm in downtown Nashville in the 1820’s, did the entire city go wild when it started to snow outside? Were horses running into each other in the streets, wagons turning over? Was it impossible to get home? People complain now that the weathermen got it wrong, but there were no weathermen in the 1820’s. You’d go to work and then it might start snowing. You really had no idea what to expect. So I’d think if an actual blizzard started, you’d be inclined to panic.
But people back then were also tougher.
So how did they handle snow in a pre-car South?
I have no idea.
Sure, General Sherman burned Atlanta, but at least fire is warm. If he’d really wanted to piss off Southerners back in 1864, he’d have made it snow.
Right now every time it snows during the day Southerners react like the world is ending. That’s because day snow is comparatively rare. There’s something about seeing the snow falling in daylight that turns us all insane. If it snows at night, that’s fine, you have time to adjust to that fact. Transportation is limited. But day snow? It’s survival of the fittest when it day snows.
Large percentages of Southerners — including most of my family and most of you reading this right now — believe they will die if it snows. Why do we believe this? Because our moms tell us this when we are young. I mean, tons of us really think the snow will kill us. Despite the fact that it’s comparatively warm down here too, we also believe that once it snows, the snow will never melt. This explains the rush to the grocery store. Of course, Southerners run to the grocery store and purchase the two most perishable items in the entire grocery store — bread and milk.
We really are total idiots.
And what’s the biggest snow fear? Prayed upon by news media with relentless focus? That, oh my God, the kids WON’T BE ABLE TO GET HOME FROM SCHOOL IN THE SNOW! THEY MIGHT HAVE TO SLEEP AT THE SCHOOL!
I’m a parent, so I don’t think I’m being insensitive here, but here’s the deal — I don’t get why parents freak out when their kids can’t get home from school because of the snow. First, it rarely, if ever, happens. Most of you have heard of this fear your entire life and it’s never happened to you. Second, if it does happen, it’s basically a sleep over at church. When I was a kid we had sleep overs at churches all the time. Your parents would drop you off and celebrate because they didn’t have to deal with you for an entire night.
Why is this any different?
I love my son’s school. I can see why his teachers wouldn’t want to be in charge of feeding him and getting him to sleep at night, but my kid’s kindergarten teacher is awesome. I think she’d probably be at least as good at getting him to bed as I am. She’s certainly going to be better at getting him to eat healthy and behave.
Eventually the roads will get better and he’d be able to get home. It’s not like he’s been shipped to Iraq to test minefields for IEDs. He’s gonna have a big sleepover with a bunch of his friends while it’s snowing outside. Isn’t that like every kid’s dream?
I don’t understand why this is such a parental fear. You already send your kid to this school ALL DAY EVERY DAY.
When you break it down, it’s totally senseless.
Bob K. writes:
Great column on Google autofill hating everyone. Unfortunately for me, it’s really crushed my productivity this morning because finding someone with a positive Google reputation is a challenge that I couldn’t deny myself.
Excluding extraordinarily attractive women, which probably should not count… I did come across one person…
is the duke of…”
Second is Paul Walker. Although if you ask me, recently deceased people should probably not count. But it’s interesting that he does do better than Nelson Mandela.”
Prince Harry, for the win! He’s probably got an entire village typing “Prince Harry is hung,” over and over again.
You guys loved that column about Google autofill. (And there’s no telling how many work hours you guys wasted on searches. I loved all the updates.)
We discovered that, go figure, Kliff Kingsbury also has a positive google autofill.
And while Tim Tebow doesn’t have a positive Google autofill, he does have a pretty funny Super Bowl commercial.
“Dear leader of the Gay Muslims,
My buddy and I have an argument we have been debating and I need you to help knock some sense into him.
Here’s the situation:
Buddy of mine (23, Georgia grad) is recently single, him and his gf broke up last week (dated for about a year). About a week after him and his GF broke up he got a phone call from his prior ex (both very attractive girls) that he dated back in college who is now in another relationship. Keep in mind he hasn’t spoken to this one in months, anyways she then asks if he would mind coming over to “help her set up her DVR.”
So we have the following questions that we disagree on:
1. It’s pretty obvious she is trying to get with him right? “Help me set up my DVR?” Come on! She has not recently moved or changed cable, she’s been at this house for at least 6 months. At least come up with a little more creative excuse than that. He is claiming she truly just needs help setting it up.
2. If she is looking for some “fun”, is this allowable since she has a long term BF? He is claiming this to be bad karma? If he turns this down he’s destined for a cold streak, right?
Not sure if either girl or other boyfriend reads this so let’s keep it anonymous to be safe.”
“Come over to help me set up my DVR,” isn’t even a plot line that would work in a porno movie because it’s too self-evidently artificial.
Who has a complicated DVR? And if you do, who is in charge of setting it up on their own? Did this chick rob the Comcast warehouse?
So she’s definitely wanting to hook up and using the DVR as a ploy to get him in the house — aka the sex lair.
Now, the karma question is a good one — she’s got a long term boyfriend. (Presumably one who is not interested in watching television at his girlfriend’s house. I’ve been married for ten years, but if I had to only watch live television at my girlfriend’s house, I’d get that DVR fixed in a real hurry. Or pay someone else to fix it.) Your friend’s not cheating on anyone, but he’s knowingly hooking up with a girl with a boyfriend. That could hurt him in karma.
Of course, it’s not like they’re married. Plus, he’s only 23. So that one’s on his discretion.
I will tell you this, one day, say at 28, 38 or 48 or 58, he’s going to be married and he’s going to wish he’d hooked up with the 23 year old hot girl with the “DVR issues.”
You want an immutable and undisputed truth that may make the married men reading this cry because it’s so damn true.
Here it is: Every married man regrets every sexual opportunity he ever passed up before he was married.
Without fail, this is 100% true. (And, ladies, when you ask your husband about this, he may laugh uncomfortably and say, “I have no idea what Clay Travis is talking about.”
He’s lying. If you gave him truth serum he could tell you the five times he most regretted passing up sex.
“We just passed Christmas and the dreaded holiday of Valentine’s Day is around the corner. My anniversary falls during January. Every year my wife makes a huge production about trying to figure out what I want for these three ccasions. Every year, I tell that all I want is sex. How is it that she is incapable of understanding this? From where I sit, its basically free and makes me happy. What is wrong with that?
I’m curious if you can provide your unique Gay Muslim perspective.”
There is not a married man alive who wouldn’t prefer a night of wild sex over any other gift he can receive from his wife. Women refuse to acknowledge this because no woman on earth would rather have a night of sex with her husband than a great gift.
Our minds never meet here because, despite what 1960’s era feminists wanted to argue, we are wired totally differently.
If your wife comes out in naughty lingerie and says, “Happy anniversary, I’m about to screw your brains out,” your night — and probably your month — is made.
But if you come out in a sexy bikini hammock and say, “Happy anniversary, I’m about to screw your brains out,” your wife will probably file for divorce.
Taylor B. writes:
My dad raised me right growing up in the great state of Tennessee to become a UT football fan (I actually went to UT, not just a fan). Obviously, Good ole Rocky Top hasn’t been so good lately. We have been forced to turn into SEC football fans, meaning we will root for any SEC team with a chance of winning the national championship game (i.e., rooting for Auburn in this year’s NC game).
I’ve noticed that my dad has been rooting for Alabama more than any other team in the SEC. Of course, Alabama normally is a pretty safe bet to get to a national championship given recent history. However, in this year’s Iron Bowl, both Auburn and Alabama had a realistic shot of reaching the NC game. I pulled for Auburn because I would much rather see Auburn win a NC than Bama. My dad told me as Chris Davis returned that fateful field goal that he hoped I was glad the SEC would not make the NC game.
Once Michigan State beat Ohio State forcing Auburn to be put in the National Championship game, I loved rubbing the fact I was right in my dad’s face. For Christmas, I jokingly got him an Alabama t-shirt and a Bama bumper sticker. I put it on his truck one day while he wasn’t looking. The bumper sticker has been on the truck for 3 weeks now and he has worn the t-shirt around the house. So, is my dad an Alabama football fan? More generically, where do you draw the line on being an “SEC fan”?
Your dad is now a Bama fan.
I don’t blame him, but I’d classify it as early onset dementia.
Also, I’d be nervous about passing out drunk in his vicinity now. He’ll probably teabag you.
Brad M. writes:
“Whenever I think of the 85% in Alabama, and the shame the 15% feel when acknowledging them, I can’t help but think of a “Planet of the Apes” type situation where the 85% eventually rule the state of Alabama and force the 15% to flee.
Which state do you think the 15% would flee to? Georgia, maybe cling on to the civilization of Atlanta? Or Mississippi, using their education, money and power to turn it into West Alabama?”
I think you go to Mississippi.
They let Tunica happen.
They’ll definitely let you colonize a new part of the state.
Speaking of which, why couldn’t we take over a small island nation and fill it with just SEC football fans who actually graduated from college? Think about how much fun this island life would be. We’d have a wealth of intellectual capital, in a knowledge-based Internet economy we could have incredibly low taxes, the weather’s perfect, we could have beach parties to watch football games.
Seriously, we should take over an island.