December 27, 2022
The Porch Is Immaculate

Our tribute to Franco Harris and his legacy... you can read Steve's thoughts here: Does winning or losing matter to the Steelers now? Can Kenny Pickett take steps forward in a Matt Canada offense?...

Our tribute to Franco Harris and his legacy... you can read Steve's thoughts here: Franco Harris

Does winning or losing matter to the Steelers now? Can Kenny Pickett take steps forward in a Matt Canada offense? Will there EVER be any discipline on this Steelers squad (dumb penalties). Hockey Jesus Preaches and our NFL Picks are in...

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And welcome to the Sportsports. Welcome back. We're glad you're here. Tonight is Immaculate. Of course, we have to say that and we want to thank you for listening on American Busker iHeartRadio. A hundred and 50 million subscribers, 2000 devices, two 60 platforms and Porches Live. com. The Porch is Live. com. The Porch is Live. com. Thank you Schwabber down at the bottom and and again, we want to also remind you that we are the Kickoff Act, the opening act.
Yes, we are. For a Sting and Shaggy Frank Sinatra tribute on American Busker iHeartRadio everyday until January 2nd at noon 6 and 9 PM we hit the big time guys we did we did I mean everybody's talking about it and thank you to all the lawyer listeners out there listeners as well yes and it's a great show on top of that like if you haven't checked it out yet you absolutely have to check it out first half hour is us the second half an hour is just great music and it's it's a tribute to Frank Sinatra.
Check it out. Absolutely. I agree. Couldn't agree with you more. Uh looks like we might have a comment in here already. Already. Uh Tiffany says hello. Hello Tiffany. How are you? Hey Tiff. Um hey Tiffany welcome. And as you can see it's a little chilly out and the heater on the porch broke so Mark and I are in the kitchen porch the studio. Yes.
Underneath the ground and Steve is protected in the friendly confines of Greenfield and that's where we'll be bringing you the show tonight first thing we gotta do we gotta get this out of the way obviously the big news in Pittsburgh is it was the 50th anniversary but unfortunately before that well before his time was due Frank Sinatra or Frank Sinatra sorry guys it's all my brain Franco Harris was taken from us kind of a shock kind of a shock it was and obviously it affected the the the celebration and what I want to do, the first thing I I I want to do here is I'm going to put up a link right now to all you guys.
Um this is a blog post on The Porches Live. com that Steve wrote about his memories of Franco and you want to know what? 500 million things have been said about Franco over the last four or five days. So, we don't want to overdo it but we do want to give him his due and Steve grown up as a Steelers fan. Uh give us a little you know give us a little Franco love.
The Franco love is you know I grew up with the guy being the only Steelers quarterback that I ever knew. Uh he set the standard and actually still does set the standard for Steelers running backs which if you think about in the history of the Pittsburgh Steelers to still set the standards from the 1970s and still have it standing in 2022 is a pretty incredible feat for for anybody but but for a Steelers running back especially that's that's what I think I'll remember about Franco.
You know he was born in New Jersey so he wasn't actually a native Pittsburgher but he really made Pittsburgh his home. He he you know in in in his tribute he even said you know don't send flowers you know give donations and one of the places he said to go to was the Pittsburgh Promise and it's a it's a great fund that actually helps Pittsburgh Public School students get funding to go to college and he was a big proponent of that.
Um everything that I heard about him this past week was Just nothing but praise for the guy and yeah, he'll be missed. I mean, it was a shocker. Frankly, everybody was expecting him to be there up on stage and that's tribute, man. Brought a tear to my eye. I'm not going to lie. It's to see his his wife out there with his with his son and just to see how heartbroken they were.
Clearly, they weren't expecting it. Nobody expects somebody with great health that just, you know, just die like that and we don't know how he died but we know that he's no longer with us but he set the standard and rest in peace Franco you will be missed yeah my my memories of Franco as a child I grew up in Central PA and in the seventies there were there were believe it or not a lot of Steelers fans in Central PA and he was the guy he was just he was the guy I mean of course you know they had what were their what were their receivers Terry Bradshaw and you know but of of the of all the legendary Steelers from that time period I think the two that stood out to me and and still do and always will are mean Joe Green and Franco Harris.
I mean you just can't those personalities they'll never be replaced. Now me and Joe Green of course is still with us but that they'll never be replaced. And and you're right. I I had the pleasure of meeting Franco Harris several times at different charity events over the years. And having a couple conversations with him. Nothing meaningful. He he probably wouldn't remember who I was and I wouldn't expect that.
Well right. Yeah I mean But the thing about it is that the brief interactions I had with him were confirmed everything that everybody who knew him better had ever said which was he was just he was just a nice Scott. You know in Pittsburgh he was the superstar of superstars but he he he stood behind his charity work. He stood behind the the city that embraced him.
Uh he stood behind his family and when you talk to him you felt like you were talking to somebody who cared. You know so yeah he will definitely be missed and and it's almost poetic it's a shame but it's almost poetic that it happened when it did so Schwabber how about you anything quick on Fran yeah you're you're eastern part of the state Philly part but yeah I mean not not a lot but you know back in those days we watched those you know those NFL films you know on the Super Bowls right Franco Harris basically having you know most of the big runs for the Steelers and you know the dynasty team in in the 70s and Uh so I always knew he was a great player and just living here in Pittsburgh the last 22 years, you could just see that he's you know he's an icon of this city.
You know they've got the the statue of him you know at the airport. Yep. They've got there's a statue out in the parking lot of Heinz Field where he actually caught the ball. Right. In the exact location. Mm hmm. And my wife Amy you know had a picture taken there. You know And and he just he really does seem like a a mild mannered, easygoing, very nice guy that I've never heard anybody say a bad word about him.
Yeah. Yeah. So a a big loss. Yeah. Absolutely. Um Richard says the day he died felt like when Stargel died the day PNC Park opened. You know it's funny Richard. I nobody has brought that up. But you're absolutely right. That that's right. Willie Stargill died the day they opened PNC Park. So yeah a lot of lot of poetic a lot of poetic just going on around here so rest in peace Franco we all loved you and we always will and I don't think anybody will ever replace him and I'm I'm and and that's going to lead me to something here a little controversial they retired his jersey thirty-two okay they they retired Mean Joe Green's jersey and some other dude I never heard of right why are the Steelers not and and I'm going to get this coming in DG says merry Christmas and happy New Year gentlemen thanks for being in the house DG hey Let's just hope it's not a curse.
I agree with you. But why why? Why is that? Why is this why there are so many numbers and fans you were making this point? You know the fans and you too. The fans enjoy it. It helps to sell jerseys. It keeps you connected. Um I mean why? I mean we could talk all day long about why they don't have cheerleaders but why don't they retire like for example like you know you go to Green Bay you know Lambeau Field you go to even Jerry's World and Dallas and you know you see the names the numbers.
Yeah the ring of honor. You know and it I think that adds a character to the stadium. Absolutely. You know and you just don't have that in Pittsburgh and I don't know they for some reason they just wanted to be like the special elite few but then I don't even know who one of the guys is. I don't either. So Steve.
Lifelong. Help help us from the perspective.
It's it's really simple guys. Like the one thing you don't get about the Steelers is they're such an iconic franchise. Like they do things differently than other NFL franchises way differently. Like they keep coach is way too long but it works for them, right? And think about if you just think about it, they have the most amount of hall of famers in the hall of fame. So, they probably right away would have to just retire 2-five jerseys.
I mean, at some point, it just it's it's just ridiculous to do. So, I've actually love the fact that they don't do it. I mean, they pseudo retire some jerseys like you've not seen a number fifty-two out there ever because that probably a jersey that someday they're officially going to retire because Mike Webster was the greatest NFL center of all time but that being said they're going to take their time and do it whenever they feel is necessary they're not they're not going to do it they're not going to do it which is frankly ironic to me in today's age they're not going to do it for the jersey sales they're not going to do it for the publicity they're going to do it because that's just how long it takes and they have so many great player that if they did it every year they could do it for the next 25 years in retire and still not be done because in that 25 years, they probably will get five or 10 more so they could always do it but I just love the fact that they don't it makes it special when it does happen but it does bring up controversy like well why didn't they do Terry Bradshaw or why didn't they do Jack Lambert or why didn't they do Jack Hamm but you can't stop like once you start going down that path you have to name pretty much half the 1970s Steelers, then you have to go into the 80s and probably pick up maybe Louie Liss or somebody like that is a guy you keep out of it because while he has numbers you know he does he has hall of fame quality numbers but you know he never won a Super Bowl like he's somebody you can keep out you know but Terry Bradshaw Rod Rod Woodson didn't either but you would put him in there because he was such a great player.
I would retire Rod Woodson Snow. Right. He never won a Super Bowl with the Steelers though. That's my point. Like he won with he won with somebody else though didn't he? Yeah but that's yeah. I mean we're getting into the this is the problem. This is the problem with retiring jerseys. You have to at some point do it. Like when you retire one jersey say every 10 or 20 years you don't have controversy. You're like absolutely that guy's jersey should be retired.
Should have been retired 20 years ago and to me I would rather have that conversation than why are they retiring Louie Lipp's jersey you know or something like that just to put another number up on the stadium like I think they did the stadium wrong don't get me wrong that's another conversation for another day they pushed that through and and the way they did the stadium was terrible they're slowly making it better by adding more seats and things like that but I'm okay with what they're doing in this case I think it shows high class for an organization that has so many great players to only retire them every so often because when I see when I see somebody like I don't know I think Tennessee retired whoever that long time Houston Oiler was that played the offensive line for 12 years I'm like yeah the Steelers had like 12 guys like that it's like who cares you know that's the way I feel about it when when I see people being retired I I could get on board with you Steve with in Not being a lot of guys but I think it should be more to three.
Yeah and and and you know when you say let's let's retire them once in a while you're talking the Steelers were founded in 1933 and so I mean I only I only count I mean once every 30 years once in a while. Right. Well let's face it. They don't probably the guy that you're talking about whose jersey is retired was died either way too soon or was so old nobody remembers him.
Right. So so I'm talking from the 1970s onward because that's really, I mean, let's face it. That's when the DUS franchise really started and Franco. Yeah and that's the thing about a guy like Mike Webster. So, what are we going to do? We're going to wait til what Mike Webster passes away. And oh yeah, he did. That's right. Yeah. Nobody remembers who he is and now we'll retire his jersey.
I mean, is it the whole point to retire the jersey while there's still people around? The the point. No. No. The point is never to retire a jersey.
Only in very small circumstances.
Maybe they'll never retire Mike Webster's jersey and I would be okay with that. I I'm perfectly fine with that. Yeah. I want to bring something up though which does need to be addressed that we we didn't talk about it before the show. Um how about the box job of the NFL network who we're all sitting there waiting to watch the the Franco tribute and the go commercial. I I know. I thought that was. That was an absolute Mark you could see it on their Instagram. You know. I'm sure you can but still that was rushing to Instagram.
That was except you and me. For other reasons. Yeah.
That was absolutely hard here. Like people actually sat around in a room and were just like hey let's let's let you know the Rooneies you know talk about Franco for a minute and hug the wife Now let's just go to commercial. Yeah well and they even they no you're wrong. You're wrong again. You're wrong again. If you want to see the damn tribute live. Buy a freaking ticket and go down there and sit in 10° weather.
Those people deserve to see the tribute. You get to see it later. Okay? You don't need to see it live in the confines of your 72° house sitting there with your with your chips and your salsa because I know you like them Mark. That's that's ridiculous. You go down to the stadium to see that stuff. You go down to the stadium to see it live. You're going to see the tribute.
Didn't have no problem with it. Actually, frankly, I was surprised that they actually showed the tribute to Franco just you know, the the little ceremony that they had. I actually thought that was classy by the NFL network. They didn't have to show that. I'm sure they had other programming. They could have showed it. Well, you know, they're you know, they're getting ripped for it nationally. Well, I'm sorry but as a Steelers fan and a guy who likes to go to games, I think that should be just for the people at the games.
That's why you get a ticket to go to the games to see it live. If otherwise I don't give two craps about you in your nice house and your 73° weather crying because you didn't see a video Franco that you go you'll get to see 15 minutes later on Instagram. This is also coming from a guy who this is also coming from a guy who barely remembers any of the games he does go to.
Alright. Alright so moving on. I love the video tributes that I can look up on YouTube. There you go. I I want to get this comment in from our friend Nancy Hahn. Thank Hey Nancy. Nancy actually taught Franco Ballet at CCAC. Uh hey Nancy. She she's told me that story many times. So thanks Nancy for that comment. Uh Patrick says Notre Dame doesn't retire numbers. Your locker has a list of those who wore it before you.
Live up to it. And Mark's wife Amy says Steve is wrong. All fans can't afford to or too elderly to go see the games live. So let's move on from that now. Let's move on to the game itself. Um you know and and everybody is now talking about the drive. Okay and you know hype the break. Exactly. Exactly. One.
One. I'll I'll give you my take on it as always and then you guys can unleash the fury. Um I thought it was I thought it was it was cool to see Kenny Pickett drive down the field and throw a nice ball to George Pickens over the middle for a touchdown to win the game obviously the 50th anniversary it it had some meaning that part of it had some meaning and you know it's not lost on me or anyone else for that matter that it was super cold super windy and any NFL offense is going to struggle to score in that kind of weather we've seen that time after time after time over the years okay but you guys know I'm a Kenny Pickett fan I would tell you that after this game we learn absolutely nothing new about this offense nothing new and it looks like Steve's disagreeing with me it looks like it but and eyes are about to pop out of his head I still I still put this entire year on on Canada's shoulders I think the play calling once again was rudimentary at best and we squeaked out a victory and you know here we go once again stab towards mediocrity.
Uh I think I should comment before Steve has an outburst. Okay. Um so you know it it was one of those games where I kind of look at it and I and I think about your age old question that you always ask which is good win or not. Right. And you know what I I kind of go with I I kind of say it it was both.
It was both a good win and kind of a bad win. And Right. And and basically what that means is it was good for Kenny Pickett. It was good to see him lead the team back and throw a really beautiful pass to win the game and look hey it took all the way to week 15 but Kenny Pickett finally made a play.
You know a play in a meaningful game that counted. Right? And so that can be something that he can build on. Right? At the same time I also at it and I also say you know Kenny Pickett still not thrown more than one touchdown pass in a game and you know like I look different circumstances I understand but I think Brock Purdy and San Francisco has played four games and has thrown two or more in all four games hall of fame you know what I mean I'm I'm just saying you know you know we should just pump our breaks here because the the reality is now did it happen yes and and and good for the Steelers but I mean let's let's say that last pass doesn't happen.
You would say it was terrible. Yes. You know you would say it was terrible. Yes. But he did make the pass and so what I what I what is concerning to me and it relates back to the Canada issue. What's concerning to me is I'm looking at a Steelers team that is playing the Ravens next week without potentially Lamar Jackson. And they lost to them before without Lamar.
Right? But still without Lamar Jackson and this is a team the the Ravens who can't score without Lamar Jackson okay they could win that game and then playing dumpster fire Cleveland at home right that's a winnable game I I'm I'm looking at this at the Steelers maybe going nine and eight here preserving the Tomlin win streak and from there what happens is you you do continue to be stuck in that mediocrity where you don't get a high enough draft pick to really get somebody who's going to make a difference and it gives them the excuse to bring everybody back because they improved yeah that's the big one and and that's that's what's scary because I do think Kenny Pickett has potential but I I also really don't see it coming to fruition with Met Canada as the coordinator you know Steve Smith if you watch the NFL Network after the game Steve Smith just ripped Canada.
Yeah he did. Calling calling him like a Saturday offense. You know meaning you know college offense. Right. Right. Um and so look I mean it it's out there but you know with the stubbornness of Tomlin I think we're looking at like it's like we're bringing back the same group next year. Maybe some good draft picks. I don't know but yeah I I just fear for them being stuck in that you know eight to nine and nine and eight kind of purgatory.
Yeah and and let me get a couple of these comments from our listeners in here before Steve goes off on us here. Uh Mike Lawrence chimes in and says just think what the offense could do when the Steelers get rid of Mack Canada. Uh Richard in Mechanicsburg. He wants to know what we think of our playoff chances. I I will address that. I guess that's Steve's going to talk about that.
Uh Amy says watching it was excruciating besides the last 2 minutes. I'm 100% with you right now. Uh Richard says you're right. It it really was excrucinating excruciating towards the very ends. Uh Pat's all over Schwabber for rep and Drexel and Chris says the last TD showed pure confidence in my opinion. So Steve, take it away from there. What do you think about this? Everything we've just said in these comments.
Well, there's a lot to unpack but I'll try and do it in three and a half minutes. The first thing is you'll get no argument from me that they need to replace Canada. The team has only scored more than 20 points three times three times this year and they're two in one in those games. So the the the problem is definitely the offensive scheming. Okay. Now let's talk about Kenny Pickett.
Kenny Pickett we talked about this during the game a little bit as we were texting. I actually thought he was regressing throughout the whole game. He looked terrible. I mean he he did like there was one time when he was like stepping up in the pocket and like there was a phantom guy acronym and he like jumped backwards and there was nobody near him like it was like clearly he is still not comfortable in the pocket and that's a problem for him in his maturation of becoming an NFL quarterback.
Something you don't see Purdy did by the way. Um and no I don't think Purdy belongs in the hall of fame yet. I do. We know the way you feel about him and which is surprising because his hair is about half as nice as Herbert's but that that we'll set that aside. We'll we'll set the hair aside. Performance on the field in May. Alright. Alright. I'm sorry it went down that tangent.
But but that being said that you gotta hand it to him. It's about winning a game. If all he has to do every week is come out in the fourth quarter when they have the ball last and score a touchdown and he does it. I don't care. That's all he that's all he's asked to do. You see him throw the ball away. He's not throwing the ball over the middle.
He's not throwing his deep. They're clearly telling him not to throw risky passes. I mean he's being coached this way. So so I can't really fault him and his maturation as a quarterback because I think that's how they're making him play. Which I think is Terrible which is why I think you're absolutely right. We gotta get rid of Canada but I don't think that'll happen. So what do I think should happen? They should go out and get a quarterback whisperer.
Whoever the best quarterback coach is out there and at least have him have his own coach. Somebody who can teach him how to be more comfortable, learn better, learn to read defenses, go through the progressions quicker so that next year they'll be good. As far as Richard goes, they have exactly a 4% chance of making the play.
That's what 538 says so I'm going with them their statistical geniuses 4% as of today what needs to happen the Steelers need to win out and Miami needs to lose out so I mean is it possible yeah I mean look it happened last year the improbable happened on the last play of the game for all NFL games where the Steelers get in in the very last second so of course we know what happens after that get into the playoffs they lose to Kansas City by thirty-five points and we move on but I I don't think they're going to get there I actually think and we'll talk about this I have I have different reasons for why I don't think they're going to make playoffs okay so that that's a lot right there and we'll leave it where it is you know my final word on that is I agree with Schwabber in that and we were talking about this before the show you know that the Steelers Fortunately are stuck.
They're stuck because in my opinion and and I'm I'm one of the guys bandwagon picket guy from from before the the the end of his college season. I was the one saying the Steelers are going to draft him. I was the one saying he should be on the Steelers. I was right. They picked him. I'm not toot my horn. It's just that's what happened. Uh I'm the one who says he's NFL ready.
I I've been on this guy's bandwagon and I I it's getting hard to defend him anymore. Oh not because he he's playing poorly but because he's in a situation where that the coordinator is so pedestrian that we are not really getting a chance to see if he can take his skills to another level. It's it's like you said Steve, it's almost like they're saying he's not going to throw down the field.
He's not going to make risky throws. Well, how how are we going to find out if the guy has what it takes if you can't, you know, if you don't set up plays where once in a while, he's gotta thread the needle. He's learn how to do that he's gotta learn you know that he doesn't have to tuck the ball and run after just to his second read and that Canada offense is holding him back he may end up being a bust but if if if Canada remains the offensive coordinator he's going to be a bust by by default because that offense is terrible and we'll never know and that's that's that's where they're stuck so if they win out it's it's now we get to keep Canada here's our excuse that's bad for Kenny Pickett if they lose the next couple games and he looks terrible because honestly let's let's just call it for what it is I mean if you just look at his play his statistics are not good they're just not good right yeah he had a drive to win this game but you know any quarterback that has NFL NFL skills can can put together a drive here and there okay so his statistics look horrible so if they lose out now it becomes well maybe he just not the quarterback for us you know and I I think I think the Steelers have a huge problem on their hands if they let Canada come back Kenny Pickett is like a dog being walked with a leash and he's not allowed to run off leash there you go words of wisdom words of wisdom alright let's move on to the D how'd you feel about the D I I think the D did great obviously they stopped the best rusher in the league and that last minute interception last second interception sealed the victory they held Devonte Adams in check they held Devonte Adams was thrown to nine times and only right yeah good really good effort by the defense Cam Hayward played a great game he did but at the same time I I don't know I mean I think part of it was sort of like an Oakland team playing in cold weather yeah we talked about they just looked like they didn't even want to be there you know I I have a lot of questions about the the Raiders I don't think they're a very good team obviously they're like six and 10 or something, right? Right, right.
Six and nine. Six and nothing like that. Six and nine.
But you know, defense did their job. They absolutely did their job. Yeah. I mean they're they're on the opening drive and then shut them down almost completely. Yup. There I I'm with you Mark. I think it was more that the the Oakland Raiders offense is terrible. I'm not a big David Carr fan. I think he's I think he's terrible. A lot of people say that like they think he's like in the top ten quarterbacks in the league.
I don't think he's in the top. I think he might be in the top 20 but 18 or nineteen on that list I just don't think he's very good only because when you can take away their running game they can't do anything they can't do anything I mean if Carr's not going to win you a game he could he can throw the ball every now and then in like on that touchdown pass to to Renfroe that was actually a pretty good pass it was a better run but it was a pretty good pass to get him into the end zone but after that it's like he couldn't hit the side of the barn except and even on that long pass to Waller.
Waller had to make an adjustment to get to that catch. Right. And I just don't think he's a very good quarterback. Actually you know what? If if they were to go out then maybe Aaron Rodgers is half the quarterback he is. But I actually think Aaron Rodgers on that team could take him to a Super Bowl honestly. I and if they keep if they keep Jacobs but I sounds like Jacobs wants out.
So now what's going to happen is they're going to have no running game and if they keep Carr that team's going to be worse next year than it is this year and I agree with you. I don't think that team's a playoff team but that's what the Steelers do. Steelers beat non-playoff teams with the exception of the Bengals but that was in week one and that was a long time ago.
I think we also just have to pay homage to the fact that how how cool was it that within two minutes we're doing a replay to see if a running back Harris caught the ball or hit the ground.
Through You like that. You like that. I think they should get a time that they did. From Mike Mallory. Same **** every year. Tomlin is not a great coach. Look we're going to have this debate until until the sun goes down. Um yeah it it's started now. It it is yeah okay so we're done. We're done. So one more thing I want to get in here before we move on to our NFL picks for the week.
Um we talked about this last week. The discipline. Okay. So that last that last interception. They get a 15 yard penalty because some on the sidelines who's not dressed for the game runs on to the field to celebrate but guess who the was Terrell Edwin same guy from last week it was Terrell Edwins Terrell Edwins and look same thing same thing okay the the apologist are going to say well it didn't affect the outcome of the game but what happens how many times in the NFL do you see dumb penalties that change the course of a game and I think I am starting to and next year's going to be the year for me okay I am starting to slowly crawl off the Mike Tomlin bandwagon I've been a big supporter of him but this year watching how he's handled the quarterback situation he's apologized for extremely poor play by Deontay Johnson he's apologized for bone head moves by by his team and a lack of discipline then I start thinking back to the Antonio Brown fiasco and I'll tell you Antonio Brown was a special case I don't think anybody was going to be able to bring that guy back but the way it was handled was very apologetically up until the point where Brown they just said well we we gotta get rid of him okay and I think that going forward if you're trying to change the culture of a team because you lost your hall of fame quarterback and you're starting a you're turning over a new leaf and you're rebuilding the team you have got to get a deeper sense of discipline and a guy like Terrell Edmunds who's a starter has to know the rules.
He's gotta know the rules. He's gotta know that if you're not dressed in on the field, you don't get to celebrate in the end zone. Okay? That could've cost them the game. Yeah.
Um okay another comment here. Chris says I feel Pickens is going to be another AB if he isn't put in place. He's already crying. He isn't getting the ball. Um you know what? I I would say I would say at this point that that's not even a concern. I think that was more frustrating. Um I don't see him as an AB. He's got a long way to go.
I mean Antonio Brown is is probably more mental illness. He's a head king. Yeah. I mean yeah it's he's really off. Yeah. And remember AB wasn't like that the first three years in the in the league. He just he came out of nowhere that one year and was just off the off his rocker he's been like that ever since. Something happened to him unfortunately.
Yeah moving on. Uh next next thing we want to do here is we want to talk about our picks this was a banner week for yours truly last week I had the Jags and Mark and Steve had the Jets and I won I I I won that one Eagles at Dallas I had Dallas Mark and Steve had the Eagles and Bucks at Cardinals we all had the Bucks and that put Mark and Steve at one and two and Chris at three and oh there you go baby.
So that's you needed it. Mark is now still in the lead at 2819 and Chris and Steve are Nick and Nick at 27 and 20. So we're going to move on. We want to know who your pick is. Who's your pick? First pick this week is Thursday. Cowboys at Titans and since I won I have to go first. Yep. Uh I am going with the Cowboys because they just beat the Eagles and they're smelling a chance at the NFC East.
So I'm going I'm going Cowboys there. What about what about you guys? You know what I mean I gotta say Cowboys just because I mean the Titans have what they're playing their backup quarterback now I think Town Hill's out out for the year it's not like it's a hard pick so it have to be stupid to me but at the same time though I almost look at this as like it wouldn't shock me if this comes down to the end because the Cowboys are just like that like they're they're a victim of the trap game as evidence by the Jacksonville game there you go you know what I mean so but I'm still going to pick the Cowboys okay Steve making it easy on me.
I I gotta take the Titans. They gotta win if they want to stay relevant in the playoff race and I think all they gotta do is run the ball against the Cowboys and that's pretty easy to do. So, all they need to do is make Dak throws you know, two interceptions a game which he he will he will provide that for them I'm sure and they play some tough defense and your man, your Chris's coach of the year wins the game.
Verbel absolutely thrilled to to hand you over first place Steve if the Titans beat the Cowboys well I'm I'm the other thing is the Cowboys are already in the playoffs they don't have to win this game no it doesn't it doesn't really matter to them if they win this game or lose this game and I probably want to put pressure on the Eagles to make the Eagles have to win their game to win the division right but the Eagles are probably already going to win their game by the time that they take the oh no because this is is it actually Thursday and the Eagles oh Thursday yeah maybe maybe well here's one more thing and we'll move to the next game if if the Cowboys actually end up winning the division there's a good chance they're the number one seed true so they get to buy so they have a lot to play for so yeah but if the if the Eagle if the Eagles win they're the number one seed right right yeah but the Cowboys play first so alright moving on now just just by luck and scheduling the Sunday night game has been switched to the Steelers at the Ravens and I I am going to pick this game man I'll tell you what they're questioning whether or not Lamar Jackson is going to practice this week it doesn't sound he's going to play even if he does practice but then again the Ravens beat the Steelers with a backup backup quarterback but I say this is a rivalry game it's revenge Kenny Pick it's going to ride that last drive and it's going to be an immaculate victory I'm going with the Steelers I'm also going to pick the Steelers I just do not believe in Tyler Huntley at all right he's basically shown absolutely nothing in in his in his three weeks of play now let me let me kind of say that it's certainly not going to be a runaway I mean I'm going maybe with like a maybe like a 9 to7 victory for the for the Steelers alright but I think they'll get it done in some weird way shape and form alright Steve O I do not I don't think their defense has it in them to get three more turnovers against the Ravens they're pretty good at protecting the ball These games always come down to the final kick and I just like Baltimore at home to to get that final kick.
I think Justin Tucker has got another sixty-five yard field goal in him to break our hearts. So I'm I'm taking the Ravens. Alright Steve's going with the Ravens. And final game. This is a tough one. This is a tough one. Sunday Vikings at the Packers. Now the Vikings are playing for they could still conceivably get the one seed. Right. They have to win two and the Eagles lose two.
Right. Yeah. And the Packers obviously are playing for their lives and this comes down to the Vikings are a better team and I think you know I was wrong about Kirk Cousins he has something like six comeback victories this year prior to this year he couldn't come back to win a game to save his life but that that that trend seems to be changing yeah but if they if they lose their first round playoff game then you're not going to say you were wrong about Kirk Cousins yeah I I know of course but I'm talking about this game I'm talking about this game right so I I but what keeps clawing away at me is my my other two picks were easy this is a hard pick the Packers are playing for their they're playing in Green Bay it's outside it's that home crowd Rodgers is having a bad year by Rogers standards but they did they did eek out that victory against Miami oh man this is tough and with the Vikings performance the last few games in the first half getting down early and all that kind of stuff yeah I know I know I I you know what I'm going with Kirk Cousins and the Vikings I'm taking the Vikings I'm going to take the pack the pack is back are on the attack I just you know I don't believe in the Vikings I just don't believe in them I think Kirk Cousins always finds a way to lose not as much this year but he does and I agree you know outdoors at Green Bay Green Bay's got a really good running game you know you know Rodgers rarely turns the ball over I think they can squeak out like a a night to 16 victory.
Alright, Packers for Mark. What about you, Steve? I don't see the Vikings playing for anything in particular. They really don't have a chance at the number one seed. I mean, I think Philadelphia would have to lose out and the Vikings would have to win out for them to get it. Uh I like the Packers. It's that simple. Okay and and Pat wants to know why we're not picking the Monday night Buffalo Cincinnati game.
We never do. Yeah. We never pick Monday night games, Pat. Come on. You've been here long enough. Yeah. It's with the program Pat. Yeah. Come on Pat.
We'll talk about it in Key West. Uh alright and before we move on here, I want to thank you for listening if you are on American Busker iHeartRadio. IHeartRadio has 150 million subscribers over 2, 000 devices in 260 platforms and we could not be more thrilled to be a part of the American Busker iHeartRadio family and please make sure you you subscribe or follow our podcast on the iHeartRadio app or anywhere you get your podcast and we want to remind you that we are the kickoff show on American Busker iHeartRadio for the Sting and Frank Sinatra or Ting and Shaggy Frank Sinatra tribute concert.
It is on every day until January 2nd at noon, six, and 9 PM Eastern Time. And boy do we have a good time making that show didn't we? Luck be a lady tonight. That was my favorite Sinatra song. That's my Sinatra song. Um so moving on now of course it is Tis the Season for Hockey and we have our very own Hockey Jesus who preaches on the podcast AC iHeartRadio app anywhere you podcast after every single Penguins game make sure you follow the Sports Sports Podcast Hockey Jesus not a whole lot I mean you had your update a couple nights ago nothing going on until tomorrow night so is there anything you really want to add to this right now yeah yeah actually there are just a few things you got they're playing the Islanders and the Red Wings back to back games the Pens have been hot in back to back games lately so I think that game against the Islanders tomorrow night is definitely worth a watch they haven't played the Islanders yet this year and the Islanders are getting the you know they were they started off really bad and now they're they're coming back up look for Jari to get back in the goal and and to do it I was at that last game the Carolina game on on Thursday night those last three games I think is what you're going to see from the Penguins really good hockey they're actually getting to be pretty entertaining now but you know when they're missing a few players like right now they're missing Petrie in the defensive core and they're actually missing both Archibald and Paling on the fourth line I know these guys probably mean nothing to you but missing some key role players makes a difference in a one goal game and let's face it Sullivan screwed the pooch when it came to overtime why he did not put Sidney Crosby out there with Jake Gensel and Raquel and in a in a in a three on three situation in overtime come on Come on Sullivan.
You're out coaching yourself. Just put the guys out there who can skate well together. Don't put Gino out there. He chased the guy behind the net and he got sucked in. They had a two on one and they scored. Carolina's really good team. Very disciplined. They play a a they play a they play a type of hockey. They always play I've heard this said they play like a man on man.
Which basically is they're always going to go after the puck. And that's really difficult to do for 60 minutes but Carolina's a very disciplined team.
Mark, you may know this guy, Rod Brindemor. He's their coach and he and he he coaches like he plays. He he demands perfection and he's he's just a great coach for that team right now and to watch Stahl beat us two games in a row really kind of breaks my heart because I remember that Jordan Stall from the two 00 seven, eight, nine years when they won the cups and won the finals with him but hey, if somebody's gotta win it other than us, I'd be perfectly happy with Carolina do it.
Hey, by the way, congratulations to the second leading goal scorer in NHL history, Alex Ovechkin, getting that 8 oh3 goal or whatever it was. Empty better. You can tell he didn't want to put it in the empty net. Yeah. When he put it in, he was like really I gotta gotta take over the lead from Gordial with an empty net but he took it.
He got it. You know, he was reluctant about it which which I kind of like about Obi. You know, he's he is he is truly one of the best competitors in in the league. He always plays with fire. Um to see him get to the second. Everybody's already said he's going to pass Gretzky. I don't know about that.
It's going to take three or four years to get there. Um you know what I need Steve. I need myself a bluger update.
Teddy Booger is healthy. He's playing he's playing the penalty kill really well still. That penalty kill is just great to watch. Uh he he's just he's he's so much fun out there but he is struggling. He's out there right now playing with guys like O'Connor and Danton Heinen on that fourth line. He is struggling to to bring those guys along. That's not who he really is. He's not going to bring he's not going to bring guys like that along. He needs he's the guy who's struggling because Archie Bolton Palinger out. Once those guys are healthy in our back, I think you'll get a better blooper update for now and he's a he's mid. He's mid right now. I hear I hear that from some close to the game that Dumelin may have seen his time.
Um you know, I was down on Doomlin earlier in the season if you listen to my podcast. I actually promoted actually cutting him I think at one point which seems ridiculous but he he actually is playing much better now and I think that's only because he realizes like if he doesn't pick it up like they don't really have anybody to replace him frankly so they they won't get rid of him the only way they'll get rid of him is if they get another defenseman and then they have to yeah but I don't I don't even see that happening to be honest with you I think they're stuck with him and he knows it I think this is his last year in this contract so I think they'll just end up playing it out and who knows maybe they'll sign him real cheap next year and then they'll just put him on the third defensive parents and sign somebody else you know that's possible I he's alright he's played better put it this way I think he's gotten better and POJ who's their their their rookie defenseman he played last year I call him a rookie because this is his first full year with the with the organization he he's playing great he's really showing a lot of growth I love the way he's playing right now he's not a physical guy but but he can get nasty behind the plays if if you see it so but you have to go to a game to check it out so if you're in Pittsburgh get a ticket they're super cheap right now and they are a lot of fun to see live for sure.
Or also if you get a ticket you can see all the videos.
That that's the that's the Steelers. That's the Steelers. Alright. Alright. I'm I must have been falling. I was falling before he turned on. Okay next next Hockey Jesus update is Tuesday night. So we want to remind you Hockey Jesus preaches on the podcast. You can find it on the iHeartRadio app, the Sports Sports Podcast or anywhere your podcast. And also we want to remind you if you're listening on American Busker iHeartRadio that we are super grateful.
IHeartRadio has 150 million registered users across 2, 000 devices in 260 platforms. And the Sting and Shaggy Frank Sinatra tribute everyday through January 2nd at noon 6 and 9 PM we the Sports Porch are the opening act and we kind of tee it up for them we do we do we do so yeah we're it's us in Sting and Shaggy consider us you know a group yeah right consider us a group alright anything else guys before we go that's all I got hey I just want to thank my daughter for this great shirt that I got for Christmas pretty on don't you think? I mean if you if you if you don't what the Civic Arena is you think it might be a turtle it's not a turtle.
There you go. It's an igloo. And we will see you out you guys all next year on the Sports Porch. Happy New Year. Be safe. Stay real. And we're out of here. Yeah don't be fake. 2023. See ya.