Sour Rankings: Burfict draws ire; 'Suck for the Duck' campaign begins
SI's new set of Power Rankings arrive on Wednesday. But first, the Sour Rankings take a spin through the worst of the past week in the NFL …
10. Julius Thomas' touchdown reaction: The Broncos' tight end caught a pair of touchdown passes Sunday, as his team dodged a Jets' upset attempt. After his second TD, Thomas offered up an impromptu assessment of how much trouble New York was giving him in the red zone.
That was "It's so easy!" in case you missed it.
9. The Lions' kicking game: In his final season as a kicker in Detroit (2012), Jason Hanson connected on 16-of-19 field goal attempts of between 40 and 49 yards. So far this season, Lions' kickers (Nate Freese, Alex Henery and now Matt Prater) are a combined 0-for-7 from that distance.
Prater actually made a 52-yarder in his Lions debut Sunday, which for this team is about the equivalent of successfully transporting a ring into the fires of Mordor. He also missed from 44 and 50 yards out. With that, Detroit dropped to 5-for-15 overall on FGs this season, a 33.3 percent success rate. The worst percentage in the league last season: 70, by Oakland.
Hard to blame the home fans for leaving, really. By that point, Baltimore held a 38-0 lead on the host Buccaneers and Joe Flacco already had five touchdown passes under his belt. Announced attendance for the game was 60,041. Most of those left by the end were supporting the Ravens.
7. Classic Jim Irsay: Irsay's league-imposed six-game suspension -- and coinciding 40-day Twitter ban -- ended following the Colts' Thursday night win in Houston. How would Irsay announce his return to the masses? Uh ... well ...
What can I say? I could say something,but nothing IS something;nothing isn't nothing,if I say it;it's something.No things are nothing things — Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) October 10, 2014
This actually was not out of the ordinary for Irsay's Twitter feed, which is usually a mix of classic rock lyrics, prize giveaways and roster updates. May as well stick to what's working.
6. Johnny Twitter: Johnny Manziel was the subject of an NCAA investigation last year after allegations that he had accepted payment in exchange for autographs. Nothing of the sort was ever proven, though Manziel did have to sit out the first half of Texas A&M's opener -- NCAA bylaw 184.108.40.206 was cited in the punishment.
So the Browns' backup QB may know a little bit about what Georgia running back Todd Gurley is going through right now. Gurley has been suspended indefinitely amid reports that he had earned cash selling his signature. Manziel's reaction was rather straightforward:
5. Lil' Eli Manning: Ahead of Sunday night's matchup with the Giants, the Eagles released a hype video featuring a cartoon Eli Manning trembling at the thought of facing Philadelphia, uttering lines such as "I'm afraid of the dark" and "Somebody, please, fix my underwear."
The video seemed a little crass initially. It turned out to be a pretty accurate representation of Sunday's game -- Manning was sacked eight times in a 27-0 loss and was replaced in garbage time by Ryan Nassib.
4. The Chargers get egged: Welcome to the Black Hole!
The Chargers received a bit of a rude welcome from the notoriously passionate (and occasionally insane) Raiders fans Sunday, their bus pelted with eggs as it arrived at the stadium. The greeting nearly worked: Oakland led the first-place Chargers late in the fourth quarter Sunday before a Branden Oliver rushing TD allowed San Diego to sneak away with a win.
3. Vontaze Burfict vs. Carolina: Burfict was playing on edge Sunday. He was flagged for two early personal fouls -- the first kept a Panthers drive alive en route to a touchdown. A pair of plays that did not draw the refs' attention, though, had Carolina kicker Graham Gano particularly upset after a 37-37 tie.
The plays in question: First, Burfict appeared to give a little extra twist to Cam Newton's surgically repaired right ankle following a TD run.
2. Don't give one iota for Mariota?: The 2014 draft came with a "Tank for Teddy" tagline, as some fans clamored for their teams to draft QB Teddy Bridgewater. Back in 2012, there was the "Suck for Luck" movement. And of course, who could forget 1971's viral campaign "Chunk It for Jim Plunkett"?
One of the difficulties for the draft aficionado/pun lover out there headed into the 2015 draft is that the projected top QBs do not have easily teased names. Jameis Winston? Marcus Mariota? Those dudes may as well be named George Orange as far as any obvious plays on words are concerned. But one Titans fan wants Mariota on his team and he's not letting rhyming get in the way.
So say hello to the "Suck for the Duck" Twitter account, a nod to Mariota's Oregon roots.
One autocorrect vowel error on Duck could turn this whole idea into a Twitter disaster, but, hey, best of luck to ya, random fan.