New York Tabloids React to Jets Playing Their Way Out of No. 1 Pick

In Monday’s Hot Clicks: the New York papers seize their time to shine, Army gets screwed out of a bowl game and more.
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Times like these are when headline writers shine

If print is a dying medium (it’s not—subscribe to Sports Illustrated!) then tabloid newspapers are the most endangered of species. Tabloids are known for front (news) and back (sports) pages that are covered almost entirely by a photograph paired with an eye-catching, often punny headline. Most cities have more straight-faced broadsheet papers these days but tabloid journalism still lives on in a few places, most notably New York. 

When a New York sports team does something notable, the city’s three tabloids (the Post, Daily News and Newsday) all try to outdo each other with their back page headlines. (Sometimes they all come up with the same joke.) They’re plenty creative when a team wins a great game or makes a big move, but they really shine when one of the local clubs screws up. And boy, did the Jets ever screw up on Sunday. 

With their shocking road win over the Rams, the Jets took themselves out of position for the first pick in the upcoming NFL draft. Unless the Jaguars win one of their last two games (at home against the Bears and on the road against Colts), Trevor Lawrence is going to Jacksonville. 

The Post’s headline might have been pretty inscrutable for readers under the age of 50. 

Get it? No? It’s a pun on Lawrence Welk, a musician and television host whose eponymous TV show aired from 1951 to 1982. “A won and a boo-hoo” is a tortured pun on “a one and a two,” the way a band leader counts off to start a song. 

The cover of the Daily News was a lot easier to understand, playing off the Jets’ green uniforms to compare them to the Grinch. 

Long Island’s Newsday was much more straightforward. 

Losing the chance to draft Trevor Lawrence is absolutely devastating for Jets fans. Lawrence isn’t just any old quarterback prospect; he’s a generational talent. At the start of last season, fans of lousy NFL teams were all in on the “Tank for Tua” narrative. But then Joe Burrow emerged as the top prospect in the draft and Tagovailoa ended up falling to the Dolphins at fifth. There will be no such movement at the top of the draft to save the Jets this year. Lawrence would have been the top pick two years ago. He’s the most obvious quarterback prospect since at least Andrew Luck.

It’s also a tough break for Lawrence. As dysfunctional as the Jets franchise has been, it’s difficult to argue that going to Jacksonville will be any better for his career. The Jags needed to assemble a ridiculous defense in order to make their only playoff appearance of the last decade. Lawrence may pocket more money in Florida because of the absence of a state income tax but he’s also missing out on lucrative endorsement deals by becoming a star in the nation’s biggest city. 

The best of SI

The Jets’ win over the Rams was proof that it’s nearly impossible to truly tank in the NFL. ... The College Football Playoff committee gave us more of the same with its four-team field. ... Anonymous coaches weigh in on whether anyone can beat Alabama. ... Florida is in a tough spot, caught between protecting Keyontae Johnson’s privacy and disclosing the potential effects of COVID-19

Around the sports world

Carson Wentz reportedly has no interest in sticking with the Eagles as a backup. ... Justin Thomas and his dad won the father-son PGA event but Charlie Woods was the real story. ... Prison reform activists are putting pressure on the NBA over Pistons owner Tom Gores’s profiting off prisoners. ... Tom Brady had an extremely milquetoast reaction to the Patriots missing the playoffs for the first time since 2008

Good luck trying to tackle this guy

Dez Bryant scored his first touchdown since 2017

They expect people to watch this team?

Meanwhile, Army got screwed

Tyreek Hill had a little airplane bottle of pickle juice

He never got close with the Jets

Patrick Mahomes is the only guy who can throw a TD pass here

The Saints missed a touchdown they really needed

Chris Fowler is living all right

He had a point, though

TV networks are still getting the hang of virtual panels

Blink and you’ll miss it

Not sports

A Michigan man won a lawsuit against his parents after they threw away his pornography collection. ... A Georgia college student was sentenced to four months in a Cayman Islands prison after violating the country’s coronavirus quarantine guidelines to watch her boyfriend’s Jet Ski competition. ... A Portuguese college student got “carp” to trend on Twitter by spending five Euros on an ad.

A town in Japan got seven feet of snow

Really impressive

But ... why?

A good song

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