This week's edition of FanPost of the Week is a holiday special, indeed. In the past seven days, a lot of well-wrapped posts have been left under rabble's tree; after poking and prodding them after everyone else has gone to sleep, I think several promise to rival the best of childhood gifts: the shiny bike I found parked alongside the tree when I was in second grade; the electric football Super Bowl set (Cowboys and Steelers) that followed couple years after that. Oh, and yes, grandma, the "smart" red sweaters that were a yearly occurrence were nice too.
Recent posters have certainly been in a generous holiday spirit; the three posts that I chose to feature each required an entire roll of wrapping paper to cover the huge boxes they came in. Need a holiday break? I suggest grabbing a bowl of holiday snacks, retiring to a corner, away from the screaming nieces and nephews and your fat uncle's bad jokes, and slowly savoring these thoughtful posts. All three are wide in scope; each takes a look back as a way to assess the present, and then offers an insightful look into the future.
Okay, I know the suspense is killing you, so on to the show after the jump
As many of you know, I love it when we one of our members joins the select fraternity for the first time. This go-round, I'm pleased to welcome Spiritof77 to our FanPost Ring of Honor. To merit inclusion, 77 penned a post of such thoroughness and intelligence that it left me in a jealousy-induced funk. He looks at the season to date of each of the NFC East teams, offers a quick, lucid analysis and then gives an assessment of their prospects for the remainder of the 2010 campaign. Curiously, he doesn't offer thoughts on Dallas' prospects. Moreover, his analysis of the home team left me in a puzzle--in no small part due to this this controversial little gem:
And speaking of QB's, the time has finally come to give Tony Romo an indication that there is a future without him. Blaming Romo for his own injury would be unfair. But his flawed leadership before that game helped dig Dallas into a pit whereupon his being injured allowed them to be neutralized as a contender from that point on. I submit that Dallas should seek a successor for Romo come season's end. Vince Young, whose days in Tennessee may be over, is the first candidate, but who knows which play callers may become available this off-season?
Vince Young? Really? However, don't let this one tidbit lead you astray; the rest of 77's post, like an advent calendar, is packed with enough nice surprises and choice goodies to get you through an entire holiday season.
Next up: just seven short days ago, this BTBer graced these pages as an honorable mention--and, in the comments section, could almost be heard crying out for joy as a result. Well, get yer earplugs ready, folks, ‘cause after being singled out two weeks in a row, ChiaCrack may be fixin' to explode! Perhaps inspired by last week's recognition, Crack begins what I hope will proves to be a long-lasting (and not aptly named) series, Crack Hits. In volume one, he dishes out a bunch of tasty morsels inspired by the Redskins game: the greatness of Jason Witten and Miles Austin; the state of the running game; Jon Kitna's discovery of the fountain of youth. What really got me was the fact that Crack apparently watched the game in much the same way I did, by closely observing Anthony Spencer's game:
A guy I made a point to watch was our beloved OLB Anthony Spencer. On almost every defensive series I paid attention to #93 on the edge and watched him. What I observed is basically what I have seen all season. He isn't the "unblockable" player we saw last year and the guy Jason Witten said was damn hard to block. He did maintain pressure driving his man back but never found a way to spin off or overpower his man to get to the QB. I did notice he still has that nice burst off the line that we all know he has, but really I think he lacks the overall moves necessary to become a good pass rusher.
For those of you who, like me, continue to be befuddled by Spencer's fall from grace, Fan in Thick and Thin's spectacular recent post on the D-line (which garnered honors in last week's FanPost of the Week column) is required reading. I think Thick and Crack (I know, sounds kinda dirty, right?) share views on Spencer--he's not getting the job done--but might differ on why. Compare their fine work to see what I'm talking about and let 'em know what you think.
Which leads me to this week's winner-a post that first caught my eye because of its genre-defying title: Mephistopheles Tempest. Judging by the title, the author, tanstaafl, uses Jerry's recent comments during the 60 minutes piece--that he was going to have to make a deal with the devil for a fourth Lombardi--as a point of departure for an insightful meditation on the history of the team's ownership, a look into the heart of its current owner, and some thoughts for a (more) successful future. Tan concludes his Christmas letter to Santa, err, Jerry Jones, as he should, with a note on behalf of all Cowboys fans:
We've held true beyond your tenure and that's not likely to change. You know it. You bank on it. I know, because I'm one. I've paid my cash and will likely again. Maybe not soon, maybe not in your time, but it'll happen. It's hard to resist when passion has a hold on you, as it does me. And I'm not going anywhere. Health willing, I'll be here after you've had your day. For better or worse, till death do we part. Are you fulfilling your side of our implied contract, our handshake deal? Have you behaved responsibly towards us? Fulfilled the contractual obligations we entrusted you with and provided the dividends our loyalty deserves?
Several people wrote in the comments section that this had them tearing up. Nice...sniff...work...sob...Tan. Let's hope you've been a good boy and Jerry Claus puts a bright, shiny Lombardi in your stocking in the near future. For now, you'll have to make do with a less shiny but equally prestigious FPOTW award.
Happy holidays, all--and remember that FanPosts, like Christmas cheer, should keep flowing and be shared throughout the season!