Patriot Nation

Patriot Nation

Roger Goodell’s Excellent Over-Reaction

By 5.12.15

Long ago, when I was a member of the defense team, I learned that U.S. Navy showers have only three settings: (1) too hot, (2), too cold, and (3) off. I thought of this when I read of the NFL’s draconian punishment of Tom Brady and the New England Patriots over a non-event we have learned to call Ball-Gate.

It seems that when there’s a controversy involving the NFL or its teams or players, the league’s eventual reaction (almost always after lengthy dithering) has only two settings: (1) under-react, or (2) over-react. Suspending Brady for a quarter of the season and taking two drafts picks and a million bucks from the Patriots is a clear example of (2). (A couple of stable boys were also cast into outer darkness.) 

Based on the various turmoils of the last year or so, alert observers are entitled to wonder if the enormously rich NFL, with rooms full of extravagantly paid officials, could put together a two-car funeral.

Patriot Nation

The Meaning of ‘More Probable Than Not’

By 5.8.15

It’s “more probable than not” that the Indianapolis Colts could not have defeated the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game using a rugby ball, a beach ball, a debutante ball, or a Lucille Ball.

It’s “more probable than not” that the evidence presented by NFL investigator Ted Wells didn’t validate his conclusion of a “more probable than not” guilty verdict for Tom Brady in the Deflate-gate controversy. It’s “more probable than not” that readers of the headlines may feel, well, deflated after reading the Wells Report. It’s “more probable than not” that the NFL would immediately fire any referee announcing a call of “Holding, more probable than not—ten-yard penalty.”

It’s “more probable than not” that Wells’s scientific consultants concluding, as Bill Belichick did in January, that weather conditions decreased pressure by about a pound or more in footballs won’t lead to an apology to the coach by Bill Nye “the Science Guy” or his other ridiculers in the Fourth Estate. It’s “more probable than not” that had we known that every game ball lost air pressure during the first half that this story’s shelf life would have lasted as long as a half of football.

Patriot Nation

Seahawk Down

By 3.13.15

It was third and six on the Seahawks’ ten and Tom Brady had been on an impressive drive. With a minute fifty left in the first quarter, the Patriots’ quarterback saw receiver Julian Edelman in the back of the end zone. Eyes wide and arm ready, Brady hurled the ball at Edelman, only to have Jeremy Lane step up and intercept it at the goal line.

Determined to get more yards, Lane headed to the Seahawks sideline, but Edelman wouldn’t let the ball thief get too far away. With an impressive burst of speed Edelman got to Lane and took him down on the 15 yard line. This was the hit that lost the Seahawks the Super Bowl.

While Edelman took down Lane, he also fractured a bone in Lane’s wrist, and tore the ACL in his knee. Lane is very doubtful for the start of the next season and will likely be put on the reserve/PUP list, costing him six regular season games. All Seahawks fans should devoutly hope that’s not the case.

Patriot Nation

It Wasn’t My Call, Says Pete Carroll

By 2.28.15

This just in from the Seattle Seahawks: In a press conference early next week, head coach Pete Carroll is prepared to disavow his earlier statements and deny any personal responsibility for what many have called “the worst play call” at an absolutely critical moment in the history of major sporting events.

In short, he will perform an amazing feat — rising up and walking away from the sword he fell upon four weeks ago when he refused to blame anyone except himself for the team’s shocking last-minute loss to the New England Patriots on Super Bowl Sunday.

With the New England Patriot defenders gasping for breath and the Seattle Seahawks down on their 1-yard line with 26 seconds remaining in the game, every diehard football fan in America knew what Carroll and the Seahawks had to do to ice their second consecutive Super Bowl championship.

All they had to do was to give the football to Marshawn Lynch and let their rampaging, unstoppable “beast” of a running back take it in for the game-winning score.

Patriot Nation

For Pete’s Sake: Another Sports Puzzler for the Ages

By 2.3.15

All right, I’ll admit I’m a paid-up member of the Armchair Quarterbacks of America, Tampa Bay Area Branch. So my comments must be considered in this light. But I still can’t let Seahawks coach Pete Carroll off the hook for his incomprehensible decision to throw into traffic Sunday evening instead giving the ball, and the Seahawks’ championship hopes, to stud fullback Marshawn Lynch. (Pardon the antiquated terminology. But for this 72-year-old, any ball carrier who is big, bruising, dominating, and has just one big eye in the middle of his forehead, is a fullback.)

Lynch punched into the end zone 13 times during the regular season. He demonstrated Sunday that the Patriots’ prospects of denying him one yard on successive tries was roughly Chris Christie’s chances of being selected Miss Congeniality. This was so even with everyone in Glendale and in Super-Bowl TV Nation knowing Lynch would get the ball, and with the Patriots’ (pardon the unlovely expression) goal-line package on the field. 

Patriot Nation

The Self-Hating Americans

By 12.11.14

They hate America. They hate themselves for being Americans. 

And in a vivid display of just how far self-hating Americans will go to smear their own country, look no further than this quickly infamous leftist-generated so-called CIA report. Its title as bequeathed by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence: Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency's Detention and Interrogation Program.

Three former CIA directors, two former deputy CIA directors, and a former Democratic Senator on the Senate Intelligence Committee have responded in detail to the report pushed out by California’s Senator Dianne Feinstein, the outgoing committee chairwoman. And they have not been kind.

In the Wall Street Journal, the three former CIA directors — George Tenet, Porter Goss, and Michael Hayden — say this:

Patriot Nation

Democrats Overplay Their Hand

By 6.26.14

I live in the southwest corner of Connecticut, one of the bluest states in the nation. But despite the influx of New York liberals that have ruled the roost here for the last forty years or so, a great many of my neighbors are down-to-earth, common sense folks. Although daily exposure to toxic propaganda has warped their voting habits in national elections, when it comes to handling the local purse they are still Yankees at heart. We usually elect Republican governors, so there is some hope left here.

When you’re dealing with people who still retain even a modicum of common sense, sooner or later they’re going to realize they’re being taken for a ride and get fed up with the daily doses of leftist tripe served up by the Democratic Party and its entertainment, education, and media wings. Despite many victories achieved in the past few years through judicial and executive fiat, Democrats may be finally overplaying their hand.

Patriot Nation

Sergeant Bergdahl and Sergeant York

By 6.5.14

They were both sergeants. Neither liked war, one being a pacifist. But both served, one in Afghanistan, the other in World War I.

Yet Bowe Bergdahl and Alvin York could not possibly be more different. And that difference speaks directly to a difference in character that wound up having a decided effect on each man’s comrades in arms. A difference in character that former Army Lt. Col. Ralph Peters nails exactly in a superb piece in National Review. But first — Sergeant York.

Not many people mention Sergeant Alvin York these days. But they should. In fact, as the tenth anniversary of the death of former President Reagan is remembered, it is notable that the riderless horse prancing behind Reagan’s flag-draped casket was named “Sergeant York.”

Patriot Nation

Red Sox, Runners, and Roadblocks

By 4.22.14

A year ago, I was debating whether to spend Patriots Day in Concord where the first shots of the American Revolution were fired or to stay in the city and see the Red Sox at Fenway before going to watch the Boston Marathon.

I chose the former and not a day has gone by since that reminds me how this decision might have very well saved my life or, at the very minimum, from serious injury.

This year there was no debate as to how I would spend Patriots Day. I vowed to be at the Marathon as did more than a million other spectators.

But before that I made my first pilgrimage to Fenway Park of the 2014 season to see the defending World Series champion Red Sox host the Baltimore Orioles.

Patriot Nation

A Rebel Without a Kluwe

By 1.3.14

Did the Minnesota Vikings punt away a core special teams player because of his outspoken support for same-sex marriage?

That’s what former Vikings punter Chris Kluwe claimed in a long piece for Deadspin, charitably entitled “I Was an NFL Player Until I Was Fired By Two Cowards and a Bigot.” (If you don’t have time to read the whole thing, columnist A.J. Delgado has written a helpful summary.)

Kluwe acknowledges that he doesn’t know for certain that his views got him released from his football team in May 2013. “This is a true answer. I honestly don't know if my activism was the reason I got fired,” he writes. “However, I'm pretty confident it was.”

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