NFL14 Cherry Picks W13: Clingons Invade NFL

27 Nov

“Hail, (Isotoner®)!”

The clingons have arrived and they’re every bit as ugly as we imagined.

No, no, not the Star Trek variety (“Klingon“). Not exactly a handsome race but then look who’s hooked on The Walking Dead. Ugh.

These particular clingons hail from planet Earth: manufactured glove wear. All made in the USA? I wouldn’t know and don’t expect any reporter to brave the question, either.

They’re good for keeping your digits dry in rain and alive when the thermometer read falls below 32°. But as far as the game of football goes they’re a plague of such sissified proportions they make me wonder whatever happened to the visceral sport I once knew.

And they’re a force so financially formidable now it’s pretty much assured these landing-pad, oven-mitts will unfortunately be around “as long as the grass grow, the wind blow and the sky is blue,” or the Lambeau leap and sack-dances keeping rolling our eyes.

I don’t recall exactly what year it was when the first all-season, sticky-glove received player / League approval and then appeared on the gridiron, but I image it went largely unnoticed by the gaze of fandom and uncommented upon by compliant media.

But with Giants’ receiver Odell Beckham making the one-handed grab “heard ‘round the (sporting) world” against the Cowboys Sunday night (DAL 31-28), hailed by those more impressionables as “the greatest grab in NFL history (“Odell” / King / / 11-24-14),” the controversial catching-aid is in the spotlight as never before.


Unfortunately we’ll never know how many truly great grabs football receivers will make in this era of high marketing, including Beckham’s now all-too-common catch, with aerial aiding sticky-gloves having changed the football landscape from high school to the pros.

Catching-aids (no pun) like gripper gloves and the banned adhesive that was known in the 70s as stick’em (Stickum® is a trade-name), constitute unfair play in league, if not class, with PEDs, making hand-action almost unnecessary and increasing surface area by 22%.

The percentage is a guess but I challenge anyone to prove a lesser figure. Fat chance.

And then I don’t remember feeling deprived or deficient in hellacious hauls by skilled & savvy receivers before the sticky-glove plague swept the football nation.

Soon, marketers, NFL brass and their pen-wielding allies-in-shill will have all America’s grade school kids wearing these ridiculous greed-grabbers and TD enhancers that hang in the aisle next to the mouth guards. And like we needed more scoring. Ugh.

There’s a practical place & time for skin-saving covers, from frigid cold (See; Ice Bowl ’67) to “wiwee“ wet weather. Last Sunday night wasn’t it. Beckham’s highlighted reception likely never materializes without NFL’s new clingon ally, the sticky-glove.

This is what happens when non-sport fans manage your game. Halas and Hutson must be spinning. “For the times they are a-changin.'” Cha-ching ($)!

But giving thanks this week for those few, independent-minded hold-outs who’ve not yet caved to the crass conformity in cover, men who still trust their hands, respect and simply just enjoy the game of football as it’s best played, clean and Cling Free®.

Clash of the Juggernauts

The day, November 30, 2014, 4:25 CST, Lambeau (City) Field. One you’ll be telling your grandchildren about? Ahhh, “maybe no,” but it should be a barnburner.

It’s the irresistible force taking on the unstoppable horde this late afternoon Sunday.

Coaching superstar Bill Belichick, led by his glamour quarterback and ring-laden, Tom Brady, takes on the rising coaching star from America’s Dairyland, stout guru Mike McCarthy and his QB, heir to the Favre throne, Discount Double-Checker Aaron Rodgers for what many are saying is a preview of the season’s upcoming Super Bowl 49.


Don’t know why, but the mythical “Connor” family (Roseanne) of “Lanford” Illinois comes to my mind here, something about turkey day and the pleasures of gobble & gorge.

But this battle of scoring-punch heavyweights ain’t about food nor family matters, it’s about something “Dan,” “DJ” and “Darlene” loved almost as much as dishing insults and warm, fuzzy make-ups, and that’s football. Though, their favored form just happened to be an entertainment entree served a little south on I-43 / 94 at Soldiers Field: da’ Bears.

Pack (8-3) overcame early season miscues and now stand alone atop NFCN after having slipped by struggling but spunkified rival Vikings last Sunday, while former co-leader Detroit fell with a whimper to these same New Englanders (9-2) in Foxborough.


Picking a favorite here is like choosing between bacon and chocolate: not easily done.

And given the Super Bowl feel that’s in the air and TV advertisers have no doubt been drooling about for weeks, maybe a friendly wager between the Mayors of Green Bay and Boston (Foxborough) should be riding on the outcome of this highly-touted tussle?

Mayor Schmitt can put up paper products (G-P / P&G), Usinger’s® sausage and Miller High Life® (Milwaukee), while Mayor Walsh might solicit some Dunkin’ Donuts®, Baskin-Robbins® and BBC (Sam Adams) beer from his regional corporate allies in an interstate gesture of good spirit and fellow-American fun.

Marty’s gonna’ love that summer sausage on a saltine. Satisfying.


Cherry Picks Week 13: “Dreams of Victory”

Bears (5-6) @ DET (7-4): 11-27 CBS 12:30 EST: Chicago wins
Eagles (8-3) @ Dallas (8-3): Fox 4:30: Philadelphia wins
Seahawks (7-4) @ San Fran (7-4): NBC 8:30: Hawks win
Browns (7-4) @ Buffalo (6-5): 11-30 CBS 1:00: Bills win
Chargers (7-4) @ Baltimore (7-4): CBS 1:00: Bolts win
Saints (4-7) @ Pittsburgh (7-4): Fox 1:00: New Orleans wins
Cardinals (9-2) @ Atlanta (4-7): Fox 4:05: Falcons win
Patriots (9-2) @ GB (8-3): CBS 4:25 (GOTW): Pats win
Broncos (8-3) @ Kansas City (7-4): NBC 8:30: Chiefs win

Record: 60 – 34 – 1

Steven Keys
NFL HunchLine
Photo credits: Klingons, wc.cca, 8.12.07, Eric; NFL-gloves, USMC, wc.cca, Iraq, 7.27.06, Cpl R.Lewis; Belichick, 8.28.09, wc.cca, K.Allison; McCarthy, wc.cca, 8.11.07, TJ.Grant; cherries, B.Kua, wc.cca.
Posted: 11.26.14 @ 11:54pm; 11.27 edit @ 4:36pm EST


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