If you've been as bored by this NFL season as I have, this past Sunday just may have been more entertaining than the first 14 weeks of the season combined. First, the collective disappointment in the Vikings' season and/or the functionality of Brett Farve's key body parts became so massive on Sunday morning that their home stadium was all like, "fuck this, I give up," and collapsed.
Then, New England and Chicago were supposed to face off in a highly anticipated match-up in the middle of a freaking blizzard of Rolland Emmerich proportions, but instead the Bears made snow angels while Tom Brady and his delicious mane of hair scored a litany of easy touchdowns. Not that you could really notice any touchdowns on the all-white television screen.
That was plenty exciting, but not nearly as entertaining as what happened out at the Meadowlands, which went something like this: Miami's Nolan Carroll was running down the sideline (out-of-bounds) on punt coverage doing nothing out of the ordinary when suddenly he went sprawling to the ground with no Jets players near him. What happened? Well, thanks to the technology of instant replay we know that Carroll was tripped by Jets' strength and conditioning coach, Sal Alosi, who slyly stuck out his knee to send the corner back into a tailspin.
Alosi just couldn't help himself when he saw the player coming his way because it's been a decade since he played linebacker for Hofstra, meaning he hasn't tackled anyone in, like, forever. I firmly believe that every single NFL, college and high school coach uses every fiber of his being to restrain himself from tackling someone at least once a game. These guys get fired up on the sidelines and now that they're all fat and old (and sometimes, really old and really fat) their yearning to be back on the gridiron blinds them and suddenly, like Alosi, they find themselves sticking out a wayward knee. And that's why Alosi (who was suspended for the rest of the season) probably won't get fired - because his superiors think he's a hero for doing what they've all so badly wanted to do. Admit it. If you were standing around and an NFL player ran by, you very well might try to tackle him because, well, then you could add that to your resume. Mike Bookey, Journalist, Dinosaur Enthusiast, Tackler of NFL Players.
Coaches love getting crazy like this. Remember when Ohio State coaching legend Woody Hayes throat punched an opposing player back in 1979 and the announcers pretended not to notice? Or when Buddy Ryan clobbered a fellow Oilers assistant coach on the sidelines? Also, remember the Oilers? Or when Joe Paterno leg-whipped an opposing running back to the ground, breaking the coach's leg in the process? Well, that's not exactly how it went down, but you can bet your awkwardly shaded mafia glasses that's what Jo Pa thinks happened.
I'm all for the coach-assisted tackle. Maybe allow each head coach one tackle per game - that seems reasonable. If nothing else, we'd get to hear announcers make calls like this: "Ochocinco blazing down the sidelines and he's off to the races... but wait, Belichick just bounded off the sideline and laid a hammering on the Bengals' star. "