On Re-Elect

It has been quite a long time again. My last blog post was during the recall, which was an awesome appetizer to today.
Oh, what a joy! Election Day in America!

Our electoral system is bogged down in skepticism, cynicism, and downright pessimistic narcissism. But on a day like today, I am still a young optimistic idealist – like I morphed out of Sorkin’s “The West Wing”. As I’ve done since 2000, I’ve put together my own little prognostication (formerly on ProjectDarkHorse.org).

I do not have a complication statistical model as I do not have the brain, funding, or time to put that together. Well, I might have the brain. Debatable. So my methodology is fairly simple.

40% – Nate Silver’s 538 Blog. This guy is a statistical genius and he has proved himself for years, in sports and politics. He outpaces every polling firm in the country. Rather than take a salary, I would probably pay money to work for this guy.

30% – Huffington Post & RealClearPolitics (RCP). These are the other two major poll aggregates in American Politics right now. There are a couple of others, but they are either unproven or severely biased. RCP is a clearly conservative-leaning group, but they are well-respected and dominant in the field. Unfortunately, they are also spineless in that their use of “toss-up” is thrown around more liberally than Joe Biden’s teeth whitening agent.

15% – Individual Polling - While the models mentioned above have their own weighting involved in assessing individual polls, I’ve reserved the right to tweak and add my own particulars to certain firms. For example, I often ignore polling conducted by Public Policy Polling (PPP) and Rasmussen because these are self-admittedly political driven polls. Their methodologies and sampling are not entirely flawed, so sometimes a mathematical model does not factor in the severity of an outlier.

10% – State Electoral Past. This is reserved to what I continue to dub the Sixth Party System in American Politics, which began with the Reagan Revolution in 1980. While current polls are obviously the primary control, independents and undecideds will usually regress back toward their geographical bend.

5% – Political Factors – This is where I factor in my own knowledge of state issues, demographics, and trends that are likely to accept the outcome. I could also be charged with a bias factor here, but I didn’t study political science for 8 years for nothing!

I don’t have any fancy graphics, so I do encourage to follow the links and visit some of these sites.

I am listing the states in order of my predicted margin of victory:

State: Winner, Winner % – Loser % (Electoral Vote Margin)
District of Columbia: Obama, 92.7-6.1 (3-0)
Utah: Romney, 71.2-28.2 (3-6)
Wyoming: Romney, 68.2-31.4 (3-9)
Oklahoma: Romney, 66.1-32.5 (3-16)
Idaho: Romney, 66.4-32.8 (3-20)
Hawaii: Obama, 65.1-32.4 (7-20)
Vermont: Obama, 64.4-30.2 (10-20)
Alabama: Romney, 63.1-35.9 (10-29)
Kansas: Romney, 62.6-36.4 (10-35)
Rhode Island: Obama, 62.4-36.8 (14-35)
New York: Obama, 61.8-37.9 (43-35)
Mississippi: Romney, 61.4-37.8 (43-41)
Maryland: Obama, 61.4-37.9 (53-41)
Alaska: Romney, 60.7-38.2 (53-44)
Delaware: Obama, 60.2-38.8 (56-44)
Massachusetts: Obama, 59.7-39.6 (67-44)
Louisiana: Romney, 60.4-38.8 (67-52)
Arkansas: Romney, 60.3-38.7 (67-58)

The rest of these states are well into the safe category, most having leads of well over ten points. A few fall into the single-digits, but when you factor in their electoral history and congressional delegations, these are not contestable states.

State: Winner, Winner % – Loser % (Electoral Vote Margin)
Illinois: Obama, 59.1-39.5 (87-58)
California: Obama, 58.9-40.3 (142-58)
West Virginia: Romney, 58.4-40.9 (142-63)
Kentucky: Romney, 58.1-41.4 (142-71)
Texas: Romney, 57.9-42.2 (142-109)
North Dakota: Romney, 57.2-42.4 (142-112)
Tennessee: Romney, 57.1-42.4 (142-123)
Washington: Obama, 56.2-42.1 (154-123)
Maine*: Obama, 56.7-42.8 (158-123)
South Dakota: Romney, 56.8-43.1 (158-126)
South Carolina: Romney, 56.8-43.1 (158-135)
Nebraska*: Romney, 56.2-43.1 (158-140)
Connecticut: Obama, 56.3-43.2 (165-140)
Georgia: Romney, 55.2-43.1 (165-156)
Indiana: Romney, 56.0-46.0 (165-167)
New Jersey: Obama, 55.1-43.9 (179-167)
New Mexico: Obama, 54.7-44.9 (184-167)
Minnesota: Obama, 54.4-45.1 (194-167)
Missouri: Romney, 54.3-45.2 (194-177)
Montana: Romney, 53.8-45.1 (194-180)
Oregon: Obama, 53.2-45.6 (201-180)
Pennsylvania: Obama, 53.4-46.1 (221-180)
Michigan: Obama, 53.3-45.6 (237-180)
Arizona: Romney, 53.4-46.2 (237-191)

The final group of states are the battleground states. These have been the bellwether states for over a year now and are definitely the final decider in choosing our next President:

State: Winner, Winner % – Loser % (Electoral Vote Margin)
Wisconsin: Obama, 52.9-46.6 (247-191)
Nevada: Obama, 52.8-47.1 (253-191)
Iowa: Obama, 51.6-48.1 (259-191)
North Carolina: Romney, 51.1-48.4 (259-206)
Ohio: Obama, 50.8-48.9 (277-206)
Virginia: Obama, 50.4-48.7 (290-206)
New Hampshire: Obama, 50.9-49.3 (294-206)
Colorado: Obama, 50.2-49.1 (303-206)
Florida: Romney, 50.4-49.3 (303-235)

Bill Clinton and Franklin Delano Roosevelt are the only two Democrats to get elected twice with over 300 Electoral Votes. FDR did it three times.

As you can see, not only has Ohio received the most media attention and campaign dollars in this cycle, but it also is the state that literally puts Obama over the 270 jump when you count up the electoral votes by margin of victory.

This is a margin of 68 votes, putting Romney’s “Swing Number” at 35. He would need to take Ohio, Virginia, and New Hampshire or Virginia, New Hampshire, Colorado and surprise in one of the other longer shot battleground states like Iowa and Nevada.

It is more likely that Obama swings Florida and wins by an even larger margin because reports yesterday put Obama as getting 73% of the Hispanic vote, besting the record by Bill Clinton in 1996. If he nears 75% of the Hispanic vote, he will win Florida with 50.8% of the vote.

More to come today, as the greatest day for America takes place!

Posted in Academics, News, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

On Recall

There is a way to do it and there is a way not to do it. This is true anywhere, for anything.

For months, the Wisconsin recall effort gained steam and was a truly inspirational grassroots drive. They were successful in getting enough petitions. Once it was no longer grassroots, the epic failure of strategy, messaging, and politics from organized Democrats is borderline criminal.

They so clearly misjudged the political landscape like nothing I’ve seen since John McCain swung for the fences with Sarah Palin and subsequently dislocated his shoulder on the whiff.

Scott Walker did in 2011 what Scott Walker said he would do in 2010.
Scott Walker beat Tom Barrett in 2010.
Nothing consequential has changed about the political landscape since 2010.
To re-nominate Barrett shows either a lack of candidate recruitment or strategic planning. Or both.

I’ve grown up with union workers around me. No one works harder. The movement may be dying because of imbecile strategic decisions made by people with no understanding of the electorate they are trying to persuade.

Here is a county breakdown in Wisconsin:
(County, 2010 Winner, 2012 Winner = Difference)

Adams – Walker 52%, Walker 54.5% = +2.5%
Ashland – Barrett 62%, Barrett 61.2% = -0.8%
Bayfield – Barrett 58%, Barrett 59.5% = +1.5%
Barron – Walker 55%, Walker 59.3% = +4.3%
Brown – Walker 56%, Walker 59.7% = +3.7%
Buffalo – Walker 53%, Walker 60.8% = +7.8%
Burnett – Walker 57%, Walker 60.8% = +3.8%
Calumet – Walker 60%, Walker 66.2% = +6.2%
Chippewa – Walker 56%, Walker 58.3% = +2.3%
Clark – Walker 61%, Walker 68.7% = +7.7%
Columbia – Walker 52%, Barrett 50% = -2.6%
Crawford – Barrett 51%, Walker 51.1% = +2.1%
Dane – Barrett 68%, Barrett 69% = +1%
Dodge – Walker 66%, Walker 63.6% = -2.4%
Door – Walker 50%, Walker 56.8% = +6.8%
Douglas – Barrett 57%, Barrett 64.4% = +7.4%
Dunn – Walker 54%, Walker 53.9% = -0.9%
Eau Claire – Barrett 50%, Walker 49.8% = -0.2%
Fond du Lac – Walker 64%, Walker 63.9% = -0.1%
Florence – Walker 65%, Walker 64.8% = -0.2%
Forest – Walker 53%, Walker 58.8% – +5.8%
Grant – Walker 52%, Walker 52% = Even
Green – Barrett 50%, Walker 51.1% = -1.5%
Green Lake – Walker 64%, Walker 68.9% = +4.9%
Iowa – Barrett 54%, Barrett 52.9% = -1.1%
Iron – Walker 53%, Walker 55.7% = +2.7%
Jackson – Walker 51%, Walker 53.6% = +2.6%
Jefferson – Walker 61%, Walker 60% = -1%
Juneau – Walker 56%, Walker 55.8% = -0.2%
Kenosha – Walker 51%, Barrett 50.3% = -1.9%
Kewaunee – Walker 57%, Walker 64.1% = +7.1%
La Crosse – Walker 49%, Barrett, 51.2% = -1%
Lafayette – Walker 52%, Walker 56.7% = +4.7%
Langlade – Walker 61%, Walker 65.6% = +4.6%
Lincoln – Walker 55%, Walker 56.9% = +1.9%
Marathon – Walker 58%, Walker 62% = +4%
Manitowoc – Walker 60%, Walker 64.4% = +4.4%
Marinette – Walker 56%, Walker 62% = +6%
Marquette – Walker 58%, Walker 59.3% = +1.3%
Menominee – Barrett 78%, Barrett 73.2% = -4.8%
Milwaukee – Barrett 62%, Barrett 62.7% = +0.7%
Monroe – Walker 58%, Walker 59.2% = +1.2%
Oconto – Walker 59%, Walker 65.2% = +6.2%
Oneida – Walker 55%, Walker 58.1% = +3.1%
Outagamie – Walker 54%, Walker 61.3% = +7.3%
Ozaukee – Walker 69%, Walker 70.6% = +1.6%
Pepin – Walker 53%, Walker 60.1% = +7.1%
Pierce – Walker 53%, Walker 55% = +2%
Polk – Walker 59%, Walker 60.2% = +1.2%
Portage – Barrett 52%, Barrett 51% = -1%
Price – Walker 52%, Walker 60% = +8%
Racine – Walker 56%, Walker 58.9% = +2.9%
Rock – Barrett 53%, Barrett 55.8% = +2.8%
Richland – Walker 53%, Walker 53.8% = +0.8%
Rusk – Walker 56%, Walker 62.6% = +6.6%
Sauk – Walker 50%, Walker 50.9% = +0.9%
Sawyer – Walker 58%, Walker 56.5% = -1.5%
Shawano – Walker 60%, Walker 66.2% = +6.2%
Sheboygan – Walker 63%, Walker 64.3% = +1.3%
St. Croix – Walker 61%, Walker 61.1% = +0.1%
Taylor – Walker 62%, Walker 73.7% = +11.7%
Trempealeau – Barrett 49%, Walker 57% = +8.2%
Walworth – Walker 65%, Walker 64.3 = -0.7%
Washburn – Walker 53%, Walker 57.1% = +4.1%
Washington – Walker 75%, Walker 75.6% = +0.6%
Waukesha – Walker 71%, Walker 72.4% = +1.4%
Waupaca – Walker 59%, Walker 64.7% = +5.7%
Winnebago – Walker 54%, Walker 56% = +2%
Waushara – Walker 60%, Walker 62.9% = +2.9%
Wood – Walker 55%, Walker 58% = +3%
Vernon – Walker 50%, Walker 52% = +2%
Vilas – Walker 63%, Walker 63.3% = +0.3%

If the strategy was a rematch of 2010, then the Democratic grassroots effort needed to create a 4% shift from Walker to Barrett. This is profoundly more difficult than nominating a new candidate, to energize new voters and reengage your base, around the rationale of the recall. In many ways, in renominating Barrett, the focus was taken away from Walker and the recall rationale to a replay of issues from 2010. This is not what the recall supporters wanted.

So, in 2010, Walker pulled in 1.13M (52.3%) to 1.01M (46.5%) for Barrett.
Now, in 2012, Walker pulls in 1.3M (53.4%) to 1.12M (46%) for Barrett (98.4% reporting).
It is essentially the same result from the same election, replicated.
You can see this from the county results. Barrett needed to make headway outside of counties that he won in 2010. He failed miserably. There are a handful of counties that flipped their results, but Barrett never improved more than a couple percentage points. There were well over a dozen counties that Walker improved his turnout by over 5%, with the highest being an astonishing 11%. Barrett could not even improve considerably in Milwaukee and Dane County.

Supporters will want to make ridiculous excuses in the face of an historic election after one of the purest democratic processes I will likely see in my lifetime — where a petition drive of over a million voters sparked Wisconsin voters hiking to the voting booths over a half-dozen times in a year.

This was expected to be a very close race. But it wasn’t even close. Wisconsin voters made their voices heard and did so in record numbers. A mature adult walks away from a loss graciously and humbled. A real competitor will take responsibility when they are expected to compete but end up leaving onlookers dumbfounded. It is disappointing to see.

Even though many on both sides like to paint the electorate as stupid and easily persuaded by lies, spin, and tactics, it is also likely possible that many voters cast a ballot for Walker who did not like him because they did not treat this like a normal election. This was a recall, in many ways like an impeachment, and disagreeing with a policy does not constitute an elected official being recalled. Ironically, this is a similar argument made during the Clinton impeachment. The difference is that one is disagreement over a policy stance while the other was gross misconduct in office — but neither deserved the attention they garnered.

I will admit that I do not like Scott Walker; his personality or his policies. However, as a political scientist and an election nerd, this was an impressive victory. This was an unexpected victory. He deserves credit and respect for it.

Posted in News, Politics, Rants | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The 2012 Electoral (Road)Map: April 2012

Finally.
It was hit or miss for awhile, but the presumptive Republican nominee from 2011 held his ground in a political version of the Royal Rumble. There is still much to talk about on the Republican side of politics, but it is time to move on to my favorite part of electoral politics: Electoral College Math.

There are many site that track the map with aggregate poll data and others that conduct their own statewide polls. They all categorize the same way: Safe, Likely, Lean, Toss-Up. I have always done it slightly different; for reasons that focus entirely on demographics and exit polling — I will spare you the explanation.

Much will change between now and November, but this is a baseline reading of where the campaigns start and where you can expect them to spend most of their time, energy, and money. You will never hear me mention a national poll. They are worthless and I will never understand why any polling firm spends on dime tracking something that has no barometer on the outcome. It is essentially like tracking wind patterns on the moon to predict the rain forecast on Mars.

Why?

The electoral map (and its math) is so very simple and so very complex. There are 538 electoral votes, based on congressional representation in Congress.

Look at it this way: Senators (every state has two) + House Districts = Electoral Votes

You will never see me abandon my defense for the electoral college. Without it, candidates would never actually campaign in person. Remember, the House of Representatives is based on population, but every state has two Senators. So, the nearly 20 states that have 5 or less electoral votes would be ignored if the outcome were based on the national popular vote.

Many opponents who do not understand the history say ‘Every other election we have is based on popular vote. This seems undemocratic.’ This is one of the more complex aspects of the Electoral College. It is important to remember that the title of our nation, ‘The United States of America’, is much more than just a name. It is (was?) a philosophy. We were never meant to be a nation first. In many ways, our states were meant to be separate nations, with the collective simply in place to protect the states, solve disputes, and create consistency. This is why it is important for the state popular vote to control who is elected President and not the national popular vote.

——-

So, it may seem overwhelming having 51 separate elections (don’t forget DC…kinda) to track for one office and it can be. However, states are not very equal in this regard.

Lock GOP/DEM*

These are states that are not only not competitive, but that neither side will or has contested these regions for some time. DC is the most extreme of these examples, voting for the Democratic candidate with 83-93% of the vote.

On the GOP side, states like Wyoming, Utah, Nebraska, Idaho, Alaska, Kansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Alabama have all supported the Republican nominee with over 60% of the vote in every election. The only exception for these states was during the Clinton era, when Ross Perot and a eccentric Southern Democrat complicated a clear electoral trend.
The Democratic candidate has a similar handful of lock states at or near the 60% threshold. Massachusetts

Lock GOP: Kentucky, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Kansas, Utah, Mississippi, Nebraska, West Virginia, cIdaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Alaska

Lock DEM: New York, Illinois, New Jersey, Washington, Massachusetts, Maryland, Oregon, Hawaii, Delaware, D.C.

Scorecard: 113-79,Obama

Safe GOP/DEM

Most sites that use the term “Safe” use it in the way that I have introduced “Lock” but there is a reason I find the differentiation important. These are states that usually would fall into or very close to the “Lock” category, but due to unique circumstances of the specific candidates, they need to be ‘flagged’ and watched to see if they move in a direction that would not be expected. If they do, it will show strength in certain areas and highlight states in more competitive categories (i.e. if a state like Maine or Vermont become competitive, it means that states seen as independent-progressive will be more in play, which will move other states like Minnesota and New Hampshire down the chart.)

Safe DEM: California, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maine

Safe GOP: Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina, Arkansas

Scorecard: 80-73, Romney
Total: 186-159, Obama

Likely GOP/DEM

I do not use a “Toss Up” category like everyone else does during the election cycle. I treat the map, like everyone else, as what would happen if the election were right now. So it’s important to make a call on every state. So I use the “Likely” and “Lean” categories to blend together those same categories, along with the traditional tossup. However, I will always rank the lean states in order of likelihood to flip, which in essence is a better way to do a toss up category. Because it includes a ranking. And who doesn’t like rankings.

States you see in the likely will usually have polls that show something competitive, especially this far out, but also have demographics and a history that make it unlikely to move across the line.
Indiana is a great example of this right now. In 2008, Obama surprisingly took this state (it was the only state I predicted wrong that year) by 1%, 49.9-48.9. However, in two-party races, the Republican has won Indiana by 21%, 16%, 20%, 24%, and 18%. Right now, the most recent poll in Indiana has Romney up by 9%, yet RCP has Indiana in the “Lean GOP” category. This is ludacrious and is enough to show why this is more properly ranked right now as a likely state for Romney, but when you add in that Obama doesn’t need it to win handily, so he probably won’t spend much money in the state anyway, it is just an absurd rating from a site with a high reputation.

Likely States: Indiana
Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, New Mexico.

Leans GOP/DEM

For proper symmetry, I hope to only have 10 states in this category (or less), five on each side. We start with 51 states but can confidently narrow down to less than 10 that will choose the next President. Many find this to be absurd, but the other states have had their say, too. Everyone votes at the same time. It only looks absurd to some because of how we are organizing the list and predicting the outcome. When a sporting outcome comes down to one at-bat, it only got that way because of everything else that preceding to put it in position. It is not like that is the only at-bat that matter — the whole game mattered.

With that being said, here are the states that will see the most campaigning, the most spending, more talk about issues specific to that state, and –ultimately — more voters at the polls on Election Day

Battlegrounds: North Carolina, Virginia, Arizona, Missouri, Iowa
Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Nevada, New Hampshire

Much will change and already has since I penned this column a month ago. I wanted to post this as the base of where the general campaign begins.

More to come…

*All information about election cycles presume that we are in a sixth party system that began in 1980 and not the apparently unending fifth party system since the 1930s. While many political sciences have not embraced the theory, it is much easier to categorize party trends a half-century after the fact then while you are living through it.

Posted in Politics | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

On Bounty

I have kept quiet about the recent NFL controversy regarding trying to injure players. I was sick of gossip detracting from actually competition and I wasn’t sure if there was any legitimacy to the accusations. Those questions have been answered and the disgusting nature of how the story is being reported shows a level of incompetence that is dangerous for any type of journalism.

Mike Golic of ESPN has made comments that are more disgusting than the racial slur against Jeremy Lin or the recent suspension of a local sportscaster about Danica Patrick. To defend anything about this story is offensive, it is just absurd. This isn’t Spygate and it isn’t steroids. This should be like no other controversy in the history of professional sports.

The discussion that I have seen on ESPN is absurd. The fact that analysts are trying to defend certain hits as clean is offensive. It doesn’t matter if they are clean — and the perception of a former defensive player turned analyst on what is a clean hit is laughable — it is about the intent, the integrity, and the art of competition.

In the words of Steve Young, “this is not a blood sport.” It is competition and you should conduct yourself appropriately. These clean hits now look different now that the intent is different. This should not be questioned. However, there are people asking “Why?” or asking what has really changed. To defend this story by saying that players are always trying to take out players shows a complete lack of understanding of what makes a real athlete. To think that some of these people playing professionally and now analyze the sport is saddening.
You would have to be a savage to think anything different. And I have never played the game professionally. I would expect more respect for the game from people who put their lives in danger to play a game.

I’ve watched this game for three decades. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen a guy laying on the ground with his life seemingly on the line. In recent years, this has gotten worse. It seemed like a foregone conclusion that someone would die on an NFL field with a national audience watching.
This is why the NFL continues to make rule changes while brutal savages whine about sissy quarterbacks, too much protection, and not enough “just let the boys play”. Meanwhile, you have teams in the league promoting injuring players, possibly ending a career, or financially incentivizing homicide.
Golic keeps whining about how players can get hurt on any play on a clean hit. This is kind of the point. It is a brutal sport when played by gentlemen. When you play it with a savage mentality, what do you expect to have happen? Someone will end up dead. ESPN has an analyst promoting this activity.

A hit may look clean and it may look like the hit was appropriate based on the position of the players. However, when the intent of the player is changed there is no way to prove that purpose. The player is no longer canvassing the field looking to run the play as designed, they are looking for their $10,000 bounty.
Even if the hit is clean, this makes the NFL a modern-day Gladiator sport.

Specifically, in the Saints-Vikings NFC championship game, there was much discussion and controversy over how the Saints played. I remember discussing that the Saints seemed out to injure players first and hope that winning the game happens secondarily. Now, we know this to be the case. It is absolutely sick.

The discussion now is focused around how will the team be punished. It is likely that he NFL will hand down one of the harshest punishments in league history. If the rumors are true this will lead to a huge suspension from Gregg Williams (the Saints defensive coordinators and founder of the bounty program at many different teams) a monetary hit, loss of multiple draft picks, and further repercussions.

Let’s get real, NFL. Here is a list of punishments. This is not a buffet, this is the list. You talk about protecting the shield. You fine for tweets. You fine for unauthorized shoes. This s themost important decision you will ever make as Commissioner, Roger.
1. Gregg Williams is banned for life from coaching. Ever.
2. Sean Payton is banned for life from coaching. Ever.
3. The New Orleans Saints forfeit their 1/32 share of revenue to youth education on proper sportsmanship.
4. Every player that received a bounty is banned from the NFL for life.
5. The New Orleans Saints forfeit their 1st round draft pick in 2012 to the Indianapolis Colts.
6. The New Orleans Saints forfeit their 1st round draft pick in 2013 to the Minnesota Vikings.
7. The New Orleans Saints forfeit their 1st round draft pick in 2014 to the Arizona Cardinals.
8a. Super Bowl XLIV is hereby vacated.
8b. Super Bowl XLIV is hereby awarded to the Indianapolis Colts.
9. The New Orleans Saints seasons in 2009, 2010, and 2011 are hereby recorded as 0-16.
10. Mike Golic is fired from ESPN and hereby banned from any NFL event.

This is the most disgusting story in the history of sports. It makes me yearn for the steroids debate again. This is serious business and the discussion as it stands in the media misses the mark on such an epic level that it ought to mark the death of the NFL.

Any punishment short of ensuring that the Saints fail to operate as a professional team shows that the shield of the NFL is nothing more than “$”.

Posted in Rants, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

On Revival

Tomorrow the “Randy Moss Tour” begins.
My reverence to the his talent has been documented throughout numerous blog posts. He has undoubtedly the rawest talent I have ever seen in sports. Unfortunately, his career is battered with bruises, from his attitude to his dedication. His return attempts to solidify his legacy among the greats.

There are many teams that could use his talents. Reportedly, three teams have contacted him with interest and he has at least one schedule tryout with a unidentified team. Here is my rundown of teams that would most benefit from his sheer talent:

1. New England Patriots: This is likely not going to happen, but it is also the best fit. The perceived risks of bringing Moss on board disappear on the Belichick dynasty. There should be more of concern over Brady’s ability to close than Moss’ ability to commit.

2. Green Bay Packers: This is one team that is not mentioned…at all. Superstar free agents go to teams that are a few weaknesses away from being a contender, not a contender that flopped on top of a historic season. However, there is an argument to be made that Moss-to-Green Bay could be the most epic move in NFL history.
Their offense will likely stay intact. If they signed Moss, they would likely let Driver go — similar age, similar contract, totally different talent range. With the same offense, this team would go 16-0 — with their closest game being more than 14 points. Aaron Rodgers would throw for almost 75 touchdowns, with over 30 of them to Moss alone — both shattering the league record. This move would be so money that Packer stock would actually increase in value, a legal impossibility.

3. Washington Redskins: They are one of a few teams likely to trade to land the most exciting QB talent in this years’ NFL draft: RGIII. Anyone familiar with the field-stretching ability of Moss knows how dangerous of a duo these two could be together.

4. San Francisco 49ers: With a crushing defense and a balanced offense, Moss would open up their playbook so that their defense wouldn’t have to only allow 1 rushing touchdown all season to win games.

5. St. Louis Rams: Pairing up Moss with a guy like Bradford could have a surprising success. They would have to wait until after the draft to get value for their #2 draft pick.

6. Orleans Saints: Why not? Last year, Drew Brees had the greatest season ever seen by a QB. No one noticed this because everyone is focused on win-loss record for a QB. Brees broke two of the most impressive records for the position, so Moss’ talent would fit in perfectly. The Saints don’t need him so this won’t happen either, but damn would it be fun to watch.

7. Minnesota Vikings: Well, third times a charm, right? As a homer, I love this idea. And as an idea, it works in my head — and only in my head. Anything that would work on paper for this franchise will fall apart in reality. As a sci-fi fantasy fan, I am convinced that there is another reality where the Vikings have won 5 Super Bowls because what should have happened, happened. Besides, Ponder is a bust and they need to figure that out ASAP.
(On a sidenote, homers everywhere should note my use of the word “they” — grow out of your delusion, fans.)

8. New York Jets: This is the most likely scenario, but is also the worst possible fit for success. First, Rex Ryan is the most overrated blowhard in coaching. Second, Mark Sanchez is the most overrated QB in the NFL. The only reason this fits is because it could light a vengeful fire underneath Moss.

Other media outlets have speculated over the Chicago Bears, Baltimore Ravens,
These teams all lack a true WR1, which is not the role that Moss should fill at 35. A team  with a weak overall receiving core but with one prosperous WR talent will benefit most from adding Moss. Even the Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, and the Dallas Cowboys have been mentioned.
Couple all this buzz with the knowledge that he is willing to sign a non-guaranteed contract at around the veteran minimum and he will play in 2012. I also know that wherever he lands will be the jersey I will don in 2012 (until the Vikings build an (open air) stadium, draft a franchise quarterback, and build a competent defense — so…never).

There is only one possibility that force me to sever ties with my all-time, all-time favorite: There have been rumors that John Elway might be interested in bringing Moss to Denver. Just the thought of watching Randy Moss try to catch quacked throws from Tim Tebow is enough to make me abort my last meal from my stomach. I tweeted last week that Taylor Swift is dead to me…and I love her music. I hope Randy’s career doesn’t die on the cross of Tim Tebow.

Posted in Entertainment, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment