When I make a prediction only to watch it go horribly wrong, I feel, as I did Monday night, like a politician caught in a sex scandal. I feel the need to get in front of the news and explain myself in the hope that my constituents will continue to believe in me.
So, while I was technically correct when I said last week that you could do worse than being "stuck" with Ryan Tannehill as your bye-week starter — you could have been stuck with Blaine Gabbert — I deeply regret suggesting that it was a good idea to start a young quarterback playing in a hostile environment for his first game on national television. It was a lapse in judgment on my part, and I hope that you will believe me when I say that I am committed to moving past this with your support and predicting only what's best for you in the future.
Now, like any good politician, I'm going to generally ignore that nod to humility and say whatever is on my mind, not even thinking about the reality that much, if not all, of it will make me sound arrogant and/or phony. But I will share these thoughts in letter form so as to appear classy and important.
Dear Jay Cutler,
I did not appreciate those two garbage-time touchdowns Sunday afternoon. They caused my wife to take a significant lead in our weekly matchup, which prompted her to gleefully mock me on social media — the type of mocking for which a man has no public recourse. Thankfully, Jimmy Graham saved me the next day and I won by 0.6 points. It was a very satisfying victory, although I get the sense it may come back to haunt me.
Dear Jimmy Graham,
While there is no chance my wife ever drafts you in any league for as long as you play in the NFL, I thank you for your contributions. They are greatly appreciated.
Dear Philip Rivers,
Your name keeps popping up in my column, primarily in the context of me saying that your success this year is a fluke. I'm going to stop doing that.
P.S. Why don't you get along with Jay? You guys have so much in common.
Dear Maurice Jones-Drew,
You should probably stop drafting yourself in your fantasy leagues.
Dear Peyton Manning,
I seem to have reached a point in which mocking you for your postseason failures just isn't enjoyable anymore. Maybe it's because you've helped me to a 4-0 record. Maybe it's because my wife is a Broncos fan and mocking you amid this historic early season run results in a death stare.
In any case, I hope you continue to average four TDs a game and finally make it impossible for me to use your playoff record against you (it's currently 9-11, in case you were wondering) by emphatically winning Super Bowl XLVIII. And don't forget, you can always ask your little brother for a few pointers if February rolls around and you're still playing.
Week 4 Lineup Crime: I didn't really screw anything up last week.
Week 5 Lineup Time: Cincinnati's offense has to rebound this week, right? I'm banking on Giovani Bernard primarily because I have to with Adrian Peterson on a bye. Let's hope the Bengals act like BenJarvus Green-Ellis is on a bye. Speaking of rebounds, I expect Aaron Rodgers to play like the elite QB he is against the Lions, so start any and all Packers receivers you may have. I speak for many fantasy owners when I say it would be nice if T.Y. Hilton reached the end zone one of these days. The Colts can't run on the Seahawks like they did on the 49ers, so I think Andrew Luck finds a way to get his second-year receiver his first TD of the season. If you are desperate at WR, Justin Blackmon against the Rams might pay off. With four solid starting running backs on a bye, the Chargers' Danny Woodhead is a nice waiver pickup.
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