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Friday Out-Takes: Coaching Carousel Edition

Premature Evacuation: Coaching Carousel Edition

Week One of "NFL '09" - the season, not last year's Madden - has come and gone, and knee-jerk hyper-analysis reigns as football columnists everywhere grapple with the tricky topic of the coaching hot-seat and that age-old query recently revived by wincingly proffered Ted Kennedy jokes: "Too soon?"

We think not! Really, what better time to begin speculating - wildly, with reckless, Colbert-esque, gut-based élan - about which coaches find their seats already a-simmer? While some may argue that four quarters of football is a scandalously small sample size, Out-Takes would like to counter that one team's QB just played his second straight game with at least five turnovers and at most one touchdown; that another just blew an 11-point lead with less than three minutes to go 'cause it's uncool to just take a hit and hit the deck, and that a third lost on an 87-yard, pinball Hail Mary due to a "strong" safety more focused on making ESPN's Top 10 than doing Job One. (We'd also like to point out that there's an "ample" in small sample size.)

While it may not matter to those positioned to do anything about it, midway through the first half of the Carolina-Philly game and the NFC East borefest-despite-the-final-score matching the 'Skins and the G-men (New York-based, not the D.C. G-men of yore) Out-Takes put JOHN FOX and JIM ZORN on mental lay-away, to collect dust in the back room and get canned at a later date. Those two, along with the Jaurons, Kubiaks and Lewises of the NFL, look to be the early front-runners in the "Replaced by Super Bowl-winning, former head coaches licking their chops for 2010" sweepstakes.

Yes, out there and in-studio sit the likes of JON "

Matt Light" GRUDEN, the MIKES HOLMGREN & SHANAHAN and future Daniel Snyder-heartbreaker BILL "COWHER behind the sneeze guard." (As we've needlessly pointed out in the past...he's a spitter.) If the Panthers find themselves outfoxed in '09, the ex-Pittsburgh chin-jutter seems like a lock to coach close to his North Carolina digs. And the Panthers seem well-suited for a Bill Cowher makeover: a potentially hard-nosed D with a solid running game and a reckless, mistake-prone quarterback. (Hi, Kordell!) Make up a bunch of ridiculous, little fan-kerchiefs and the guy should feel right at home.

As for the Mikes, we see Shanny heading to Dallas, bumping WADE PHILLIPS off the carousel, and Holmgren winding up in SD. (That is, if NORV TURNER continues to inspire performances like the squeaker in Oakland Monday night.) As for "Chucky," there looms an intriguing game of Hot & Cold: Kubiak's Houston or the Chilly climes of "Major Brad's" Minnesota.

In other words, for NFL head coaches this is the worst time in history to have iffy job security. (That sound you hear is the collective "Join the club!" grumblings emanating from the rest of us.)

"Kirsch Words" Cliff Notes

In honor of Monday Night's dramatic opener, and for those too busy to go back to the DVR, here's the bare essential, "just the facts, ma'am" recap - in sixteen (Kirsch) Words or less...*

Kirsch Words [kersh wurdz] - noun
1. a wide-ranging in-game chat with commentary - amusing, candid, gastro-specific and otherwise - from FRED KIRSCH, Editor-in-Chief & Publisher of Patriots Football Weekly.*

Kirsch Words: I hate to say it, but Brady has overthrown 3 receivers so far.

Kirsch Words: Fred Jackson picked up 16 yards but may have fumbled. Mayo got hurt on the play but walked off.

Kirsch Words:Brady picked off by Schobel and he goes in for 6. Schobel is one of those guys who always kills us.

Kirsch Words: Brady needs to get Serena Williams angry.

Kirsch Words: I'm telling you right now, Patriots win this game.

Kirsch Words: Fred Jackson again.

Kirsch Words: Man that was a bogus call on Wilfork.

Kirsch Words: I think most people are in a little bit of disbelief.

Kirsch Words: Jackson scores. Game, set match folks.

Kirsch Words: tick, tick, tick

Kirsch Words: TD Watson from 18 yards out!

Kirsch Words: 24-19 with 2:06 left. We need a miracle.

Kirsch Words: Meriweather had the hit. Pierre Woods had the strip. Gostkowski had the recovery. Now that's team work.

Kirsch Words: TOUCHDOWN WATSON. Un...{ahem}...believable!!!

Kirsch Words:GAME OVER!

Kirsch Words: I need a fried dough.

Attaboy, Fred. See you Sunday at the PFW Blog. (View PFW Blog)

Blooper Reel

~ Given JEROD MAYO, is anyone else wondering what the Patriots have to do to get through the first half of the first quarter of the first game without some massive issue, injury- or otherwise, popping up? It's at least three years running now, and four if you count Buffalo's blitzkrieg sack and fumble return TD on the first play from scrimmage in 2006. Our advice to BILL BELICHICK - you're welcome, by the way - play the back-ups until you clear the ten-minute mark next year.

~ It's rare that remarkably good "situational football" (copyright, apparently, TEDY BRUSCHI on ESPN's Monday Night post-game show) and remarkably bad situational football rear their heads so closely together that dual concussions become a real concern, but that looked to be the case in Cincy on Sunday.

Only moments after the collective brain-freeze of the Bengals secondary led to no one protecting the deep part of the field just so ROY WILLIAMS could slam into BRANDON MARSHALL for no good reason (unless you consider "Karma" a "good reason"), Denver's other wide receiving BRANDON, of the STOKLEY phylum, cannily deployed what many recognized as classic video game strategy: killing the clock by tight-roping the goal line before breaking the plane for the game-winning score. Speaking of Karma and the Fantastic Finish (credit: Alcoa & the 1980s)...

~ Dear JOSH MCDANIELS, You and your off-season earned that Week One result. (P.S. Same to you, JAY "four picks" CUTLER. Keep it up. We can't get enough of that blank, post-Jägermeister frat boy stare.)

~ This week's gratuitous (but not really) shot at BRETT FAVRE - aka the "Fluff" Cowan to ADRIAN PETERSON's Tiger Woods, right down to the eventual awkward firing, we hope - is brought to you by the folks at FOX's pre-game show. Specifically, that hypothetical misspeller of "cat," even spotted the c and the t, TERRY BRADSHAW:

"I'm tired of it. My family's tired of it. We're all tired of it. I wish it would go away. I'll be glad when he's retired and moved on because I'm really fed up with him."

Honest, succinct, penetrating analysis! Yay! And - we know, we know - on FOX!!!

~ If you took DICK JAURON and gave him BOB HOPE'S NOSE would he not bear an alarming resemblance to COLIN COWHERD?

~ Nice of the NFL to help the Pats celebrate their 50th anniversary, but it was a bit much to throw in a phantom roughing-the-passer call. Guys, you shouldn't have. Really.

~ The fact that Steelers wideout SANTONIO HOLMES caught nine balls for 131 yards and a touchdown against Tennessee last Thursday would be merely impressive, as opposed to mind-blowingly noteworthy, if those hadn't been the identical stats he put up on his way to copping MVP honors in last year's Super Bowl. We haven't seen a guy in yellow this consistent since LANCE ARMSTRONG stopped cycling. (So to speak.)

~ Asinine Quote of the Week comes courtesy of Bills DB-slash-kick return-fumbler LEODIS "Next Time Go With Your First Instinct" MCKELVIN: "I chose to bring [the ball] out because that's me. If I had another chance 100 times, I would probably do the same thing... If it happens next week, I'm going to do it again." You'll show us, Leodis!

~ Asinine Quote of the Week, Sneaker Edition: Despite a paycheck that will come dangerously close to ten million dollars by season's end, Houston corner DUNTA ROBINSON felt the need to make it clear to Texans management that he's looking for a bit more throw-around money. (Ten mill doesn't go as far as it used to. I mean, it's not like it's the 90's or anything.) Robinson's M.O.? Putting the phrase, "Pay me, Rick" on his cleats. His post-game explanation? "It's just a reminder that this is what we're here for. It's to get paid." (And, apparently, to make our heads explode.)

And finally...

~ ELLIS HOBBS recently ripped his ex-mates in New England for "tanking it" and "dogging it." Frankly, we were shocked. Sure, he's not exactly the shy, retiring type, but the idea that Ellis "fifty yards of cushion" Hobbs would be standing close enough to anyone during a football-related activity to be *heard speaking * shows he's seriously turned his game around.

Just kidding, 27. (Kinda.)

John Cockrell is a screenwriter, whose other work has run the gamut from "Sesame Street Parents Magazine" to Playboy TV's "The Weekend Flash." (He figures everything else is pretty much in-between.)"

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