NFL: This Weekend's Best Bets

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Joel Kramer
Coming into the season, we all knew the Texans' schedule was relatively light. Granted, every team on the Texans' schedule was looking at the Texans as one of their opponents to justify thinking the same thing.

But here we are, two weeks in, and with the Texans at 2-0, the Colts at 0-2, and the NFC East being even worse than we'd thought, suddenly this is getting really interesting.

Check out the latest Super Bowl odds, courtesy of Bovada, with the Texans 2014 opponents in bold:

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A Tradition Like No Other: NFL Jackasses Getting Arrested For Domestic Violence

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Parker Anderson
Ok, NFL, you are seriously ridiculous.

Perhaps it's unfair of me to address the league as one collective entity, because honestly, most of the guys in the league, all of the ones I've associated closely with, are seemingly good people. They do things for charities, they're kind to other adults and to children, they look you in the eye when they address you.

However, the commissioner of the NFL is a goddamn clown (the Michael Scott to the NFL's Dunder Mifflin), a vast contingency of the owners and coaches are wishy-washy, flippy-floppy billionaire empty suits, and yes, I'm sorry players, but this small little cadre of wife and child beaters are ruining the bunch for me right now.

Yesterday, I joked that maybe we would make it through one radio show (NOTE: I do four hours from 2-6 p.m. every day on Sports Radio 610.) without a domestic violence incident involving an NFL player being reported.

Well, I was partially right. There wasn't a single one.

There were actually two.

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Adrian Peterson's Childhood Beatings Recalled By Family Members

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Twitter
Police photos obtained by CBS Minnesota allegedly showing injuries sustained by Peterson's abused child.
If it comes down to a jury trial, Adrian Peterson's potential lack of guilt in his recent indictment on charges of child abuse are held together by one simple premise:

Adrian Peterson's brutal discipline methods (used on at least one of his children) are a product of the same (or possibly worse) punishments doled out to him by his father and others when he was a young boy in Palestine, TX.

Even the other recent sports world transgressions that were so lopsided in the court of public opinion had at least some divisive or polarizing element to them. Should Ray Rice really be suspended indefinitely just because video turned up of the punch that already got him a two game suspension? Was it fair that Donald Sterling's racist comments were recorded without his consent by his girlfriend?

In those cases, there's little debate that Ray Rice and Donald Sterling are not very good people. The questions are more about how their respective offenses were handled.

With Peterson, the moral debate is more complicated.

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Minnesota Vikings Reverse Course, Remove Adrian Peterson From Team Activities

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MN National Guard
With pressure from state government and corporate sponsors mounting, the Minnesota Vikings did an about face early Wednesday morning and decided to remove Adrian Peterson from all team activities until his child-abuse case in Montgomery County is resolved, placing the Pro Bowl running back on the exempt/commissioner's permission list.

The decision, which comes just two days after the Vikings had reinstated Peterson following deactivation for the Vikings-Patriots game last Sunday, was announced in a statement by team owners Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf:


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Fan Fighting League! LSU Bro Fight Video Is Delightfully Absurd (VIDEO)

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YouTube
Now THIS is how you film a fight. Bravo.
This past weekend, I traveled to Norman, OK to watch the Sooners take on the Tennessee Volunteers with some friends.

Among them was my radio partner Ted Johnson, a three time Super Bowl champion and 10 year NFL player from 1995-2004. Ted and I started doing our show together, along with Rich Lord, back in March, and we were talking about what's been good and bad the first several months of our show.

The first thing Ted brought up was this: "Dude, I just can't believe how serious and 'non-sports' the subject matter is that we've had to discuss. I feel beaten down some days, like everything we talk about is more life-related or crime-related than sports-related."

You know what? Ted's absolutely right.

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Adrian Peterson Child Abuse Case Is Latest NFL Crisis

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Mike Morbeck
All last week, we were worn down to a nub by the Ray Rice domestic assault case.

Elevator security videos, indefinite suspensions, and allegations that the commissioner of the NFL may be lying about what he knew, didn't know, or at the very least efforted during the due diligence process. By the end of the week, the "Ray Rice story" had become the "Roger Goodell story" with the possibility of Goodell being relieved of his duties on the board.

It was not a fun week. And the whole time we were discussing and dissecting the story, we knew it would take a bombshell to somehow trump the interest in Roger Goodell's handling of Ray Rice's transgressions.

It took exactly three days to get that bombshell.

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Texans 30, Raiders 14: 4 Winners, 4 Losers

Categories: Game Time, Sports

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Photo by Groovehouse
Fitz, making sure the trains run on time.
After a methodical 30-14 choking out of the Oakland Raiders on Sunday afternoon, the Texans moved to 2-0 on the season, Bill O'Brien becoming the first of the Texans' three head coaches in their short history to win his first two games.

The Texans have been here, at 2-0, before, though. More precisely, they've been here, at 2-0, for five straight seasons now.

But 2-0 guarantees a team nothing. The Texans are proof of this.

Two of the 2-0 finishes ended in AFC South championships and double digit wins (2011, 2012). The other two ended in disaster, with the 2010 season cratering under the weight of a wretched Frank Bush-coordinated defense to finish 6-10. The 2013 season imploded much faster, with a 14 game losing streak that just ended eight days ago.

So which 2-0 start does 2014's most closely resemble?

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This Weekends Best Bets: "Cleveland Punter Gets Face Stomped" Edition

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Joel Kramer
Finally, a safe haven from TMZ videos of domestic violence incidents and replays of Roger Goodell's sweaty face, lying his ass off to America.

Actual football!

If you're someone who is more the traditionalist, you can say what you want about Thursday Night Football -- the short week dilutes the quality of the product, NFL football is meant to be played on Sundays (and Mondays), Thursday belongs to college -- but if ever there were a week where we needed on the field stuff to wash the horrific taste of the off the field trials out of our mouths, it's this week.

Naturally, of course, one of the two teams in tonight's game is the now former employer of the wife beater in question, one Raymell (yes, RAYMELL) Mourice (sic) Rice. So we can't totally escape Rice talk.

But since the game is on CBS and the NFL Network (historic first ever simulcast!), we at least won't be subject to Chris Berman's less than insightful analysis of the league's handling of RAYMELL Rice:

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Fan Fighting League 2014 Is Underway! Texas Tech And UTEP Fans Brawl

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YouTube
Beauty is probably in the eye of the beholder when it comes to the proliferation of cameras (security, cell phone, or otherwise) in public places.

I mean, I'm guessing right about now, Ray Rice (and to a "walls are closing in" extent, Roger Goodell) probably longs for the days where to take a picture of someone, you needed an actual camera with a flash bulb, and when security footage surfaced, it was grainy and not nearly as plentiful.

Let's be honest -- with no footage of his TKO of his wife, Rice is probably waking up at the team hotel this morning and getting ready for Thursday Night Football.

Me? I love the age of omnipresent cameras, the content whirring of footage being shot everywhere we go. I have nothing to hide. My peccadilloes are pretty boring, and the exciting stuff I do is social media-friendly.

Also, the ever present video camera spawned the Fan Fighting League, and the 2014 FFL season got underway big time late Saturday night in El Paso!

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Penn State Students Celebrate Lifting Of Postseason Ban With A Paterno Love Fest

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Penn State
They want it back..

I will admit, I was glad when the NCAA handed down their stiff punishment to Penn State a few years ago in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

Sure, the massive scholarship reductions and multi-season bowl bans hurt a bunch of coaches and student-athletes that had literally nothing to do with Jerry Sandusky's multi-decade flood of evil inflicted upon young people, his raping of several young boys in the State College area. From a certain standpoint, yes, NCAA president Mark Emmert's swift punishment was entirely misguided.

But punishing and embarrassing the Penn State football program would also hurt the legions of Joe Paterno truthers and cult-like weirdos that seemed to pervade the alumni base and the State College community (not all of you, Penn State, but enough to be really, really annoying and more than a little creepy), and I was totally cool with that.

I found those people offensive, tone deaf, and one layer removed from being a little evil themselves. "If punishing the football program was punishing the Paterno-ites, well lets start lopping off those scholarships" was my general thought.

Over time, though, I did soften.


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