The NFL is entering a new era when quarterbacks have more fantasy value than running backs, home field is not that big of a deal (the home team only wins 54 percent of the time this season), and parity has dissipated as nine of the 32 teams in the league have either no losses or no wins. Yes this is a new age in the league and there are seven football seals that have been broken this season to put an end to everything we knew about football.
First Seal: Conquest
Cedric Benson of the Cincinnati Bengals is leading the league in rushing. Yes, Cedric Benson that could not figure out that at 5 foot 11 and 225 pounds he could not nimbly dance around defenders. This is not say that he has conquered anything, but to say that passing and running back tandems have become far more important than having a feature running back, making Adrian Peterson even more of a freak.
Second Seal: War
The Cleveland Browns have two quarterbacks fighting to ineptly lead the Browns offense. It has gotten so bad that there has been discussion of special teams maestro Josh Cribbs taking over at quarterback because he played quarterback back in Pop Warner. The poor Cleveland dog pound has survived the departure of the original Browns and now they are fighting over who will lead this terrible team to a quasi-respectable regular season finish.
Third Seal: Famine
In this age of gimmicky offenses and quarterback supremacy somehow two teams cannot even average 10 points a game. The Oakland Raiders average just 9.8 points a game and are still not the worst offense in the league. The St. Louis Rams are only putting up 6.8 points a game. How can a league built to allow so much scoring have two teams that cannot manage to score double digits consistently?
Fourth Seal: Death
Al Davis is doing all he can to kill any proof that the Raiders were once a respectable football franchise that once won three Super Bowls in nine seasons. Anyone born after 1990 must think that Raiders have always been cursed. The 48-21 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers erased any inkling of respectability for the franchise. They will not even replace JaMarcus Russell when he shown no signs of playing better than his 47.1 quarterback rating. At least the Cleveland Browns are giving somebody else a chance to not lead the team down the field.
Fifth Seal: Visions of Martyrs
Terrell Owens has only 12 receptions, 202 yards, and a touchdown through five games. He used to get those kinds of stats in a single game with Romo throwing the ball in Dallas. Yet, Owens has not thrown quarterback Trent Edwards under the bus since the first week of the season. The only thing that could have compelled him to keep his mouth shut is that visions of respected elderly NFL statesmen like Lynn Swann and Jerry Rice must have told him to be quiet and accept the situation he has created for himself. I refuse to believe that he has suddenly become humble…or responsible.
Sixth Seal: Earthquake and Marking of the 144,000
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers has heard the pounding of an earthquake this season as he has been sacked 20 times in four games and the Packers are only 2-2 in a season in which they were supposed to win the NFC North. The city of Green Bay may not have 144,000 residents, but it has 100,353 and that is the number of fans who are wondering if the front office made a mistake letting Brett Favre go, especially now that he is leading the 5-0 Minnesota Vikings.
Seventh Seal: Trumpets of the Angels and the End of the World
The Denver Broncos are 5-0 with a quarterback with half the arm of Jay Cutler and much of the same defense that was just so bad a season ago. Josh McDaniels even managed to beat his old boss Belichick. This is either a storyline from heaven for the Denver area and NFL reporters who were bored of covering the same old teams or the end of the world for the Patriots as one of their own has finally threatened to destroy their 21st century domination in a year meant to be “The Return of Tom Brady.”