There's no real clever way to ease into this, so I'm just going to come out and say it. I'm not going to waste your time with some pathetic football jig joke/comparison, because what we'll all be dealing with in a week and a half is no joke.
On Sept. 27, the three-hour Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year shows on ESPN2 will be directly up against the afternoon NFL slate of games (4 p.m. ET - 7 p.m.).
That puts a lot of us in a real pickle, so I've decided to do a little research for everyone and ease the pain. But before I start making a case, I feel it's important you know something about where I'm coming from.
I'm a man that loves me some football. I'm in five fantasy leagues. I had a dream (nightmare, really) last Friday that Donovan McNabb threw for four touchdowns, but DeSean Jackson wouldn't run his routes. He'd just stand there and watch. How am I supposed to get fantasy points if my guy is just standing there? It was awful.
But I also love me some bass fishing. I don't think I need to get into too many details on that front — I write for Bassmaster.com. And, for one of the few times outside the Classic, bass fishing is in prime time, it's three hours long, and it will crown the greatest bass fisherman in the world.
And thus, a predicament. I know what I'm going to be getting from the bass shows, it will just be three times as good. It was like the two-hour finale of Seinfeld (an hour of highlights, an hour of show). I just couldn't believe I was going to get to watch two straight hours of fresh Seinfeld. I had to settle myself down.
So the decision really came down to what NFL games are going to be on? And here they are, complete with commentary.
Chicago Bears @ Seattle Seahawks
The bears looked so promising three months ago. Their defense was "healthy," Cutler was in town and some were picking them for the Super Bowl. Then everyone remembered they're the Bears. Cutler threw 15 picks and Urlacher is out for the season. I can't believe Seattle still has a team. Hasselbeck will no doubt be injured again by then. Snooze fest. Not watching.
New Orleans Saints @ Buffalo Bills
The only reason to have this game on is follow Drew Brees' fantasy line, which you can do a lot easier online. The Bills proved against the Patriots that they will avoid success at all costs. Do I really want to get the "you watch too much football," crook eye from my wife for three hours of Bills-Saints? No thanks.
Miami Dolphins @ San Diego Chargers
I can't imagine anyone outside of these two cities wanting to watch this. It will be Chargers-Raiders revisited when I'm sitting up in bed at the end thinking, "That's three hours of my life I'll never get back." The Chargers won't look as good as they should, but all along you'll know they're going to win because they're playing the Dolphins. One year with a decent record (and an easy schedule) doesn't make the Dolphins good.
Denver Broncos @ Oakland Raiders
I'm not even going to make a case on this one. If you're on Bassmaster.com (which means you care somewhat about bass fishing) and you like the NFL enough to make a decision on Sunday afternoon (which might be why you're reading this column), you already know why not to watch this game.
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals
You could watch this, or maybe you could find a tape of the New England Patriots playing Fort Smith, Ark., high school. Except this will be low scoring and less entertaining. Fantasy implications: maybe Ben R., and maybe Santonio Holmes. And it's just not worth it anyway. Check the score online. Don't put yourself through this game.
And that's it. No Patriots, Colts, no Cowboys, Eagles. It's just Broncos, Raiders and Bears, Seahawks.
Are you willing to give up three hours of prime-time professional bass fishing on ESPN2 for the Steelers, Bengals? You've got to admit. I'm making a case. A case has been made.
And for those of you who have weird fantasy football dreams and wish you could hibernate from February to September, there's always the DVR.