Bro, I Got You…

What a Nice Guy


In Defense of Randy Moss!

So Media Day just happened at the Super Bowl and plenty of things occurred or were said that are note worthy…but for some reason, people are fascinated by this:


Ok, I get it. Jerry Rice is using statistics to say, “you are flat out wrong, Randy. I am better.” I guess that is true. If you look at just numbers, Randy Moss’ career does not stand up to Jerry Rice. In fact, no other wide receiver that EVER played in the NFL even comes close. However, Moss had a lot more of a preamble before that statement written above came out. I think it is taken a bit out of context. And ESPN of course is running with it, saying he is a moron. Now, I grew up a Vikings fan and I was surrounded by Packers fans, so I get how people hate Randy Moss probably better than most. But, now that Moss hasn’t truly been a Viking for some time (yea, he played like 4 games with them not too long ago, but that doesn’t count), maybe we can all take a step back and realize just how magical and new this guy and his talents were. Let me break down some reasons why Randy Moss actually has a small, VERY SMALL, case:

-Randy Moss owns the single greatest season of any wide receiver ever. Back in 2007 with the Patriots, Moss caught 93 balls for 1,493 yards and 23 touchdowns. That last number, that is a single season record for TD’s. In fact, Moss is the only link between the two greatest offenses of all time, the ’98 Vikings and the ’07 Patriots. Coincidence? Doubt it.

-Numbers and stats change from generation to generation. Records stand or fall as the game changes. This was one of the things Moss was hinting at as he explained his reasons. Sure, Jerry Rice has all the numbers. But Moss was talking about impacting the game. The NFL game CHANGED because of Randy Moss. Rice dominated the game through his well executed routes in a west coast offense. Moss, he changed the game. Do his stats match up? Not necessarily. But lets look at some examples of how the game has changed: Jerry Rice played in an era of quick passing and precise routes. He caught a ton of balls, however, Randy Moss averaged more yards per catch over his career. Jerry Rice was THE KING of precise route running…Randy Moss was so good that routes didn’t matter for him. He would simply just get the ball where ever it was thrown. The game changes. Case and point: Dan Marino threw for 5,000 yards in what was considered for a long time the greatest QB campaign ever. He threw the ball 564 times that year. But then Drew Brees, in the new Pass friendly league, shattered that yardage mark and threw for 5,476 yards back in 2011. However, he threw the ball 657 times. Well, it stands to reason that if Dan Marino had 100 more attempts, who knows what would happen?? Another example: Eric Dickerson’s record 2,105 yards rushing came under attack by Adrian Peterson this year. Dickerson got that record running the ball 379 times that season. Peterson this year fell 9 yards short in the end, but only ran the ball 348 times. Do you think Adrian Peterson could get 9 yards with 20+ more attempts? My point with these remarks is that the era in which you play greatly effects what you can and cannot do as a player. Does Rice have a ton of stats? Sure. Would he have all those stats now in this league? Who knows? This leads me to my next point…

-Randy Moss changed the game of football more than any other Wide Reciever ever, and maybe more than any other football player. No seriously, check this out: Freakonomics. There is a lot of cause and effect here, but stay with me: The NFL was a ground based game. Teams threw the ball still, sure. But it was hard to throw the ball. The reason being that back then, the players were men. They could be hit, pulled, pushed…basically, they had to actually FIGHT for the ball. Offenses were built for running. Offensive linemen were bulldozers built to move forward. Teams were structured around one thing, handing the ball off and moving the chains. Defenses were geared to stop that too. Look at the ’85 Bears and their vaunted 46 defense, A hyper-aggressive variant of the 4-3 base set, the 46 dramatically shifted the defensive line to the weak side, with both guards and the center “covered” by the left defensive end and both defensive tackles. This front forced offenses to immediately account for the defenders lined up directly in front of them, making it considerably harder to execute blocking assignments such as pulling and trapping. In normal person speak, it was really really hard to run on it. And then, it became really hard to pass on it too.

Ok, so what happened in 1998? Well, the Minnesota Vikings drafted this kid named Randy Moss out of Marshall. Almost overnight, the Vikings shifted from a Robert Smith ground attack (he averaged 5.5 yards per carry and ran for 1,200+ yards in 1997) to a pass offense. Remember, defenses were not ready for the passing onslaught. Moss led the Vikings offense that year with 1,313 yards and 17 touchdowns (rookie record). Most importantly, people wanted to SEE Randy Moss. People wanted to see that brand of football. Fans wanted to see it and coaches realized, “oh man, I need a guy like that.” And so began the biggest overhaul in NFL history.

All of a sudden, the NFL started to switch to a passing league. Teams started to focus more on QB’s and WR’s more than running backs. Offensive linemen started to become pass blockers and not run blockers. Receivers started to shift from possession guys and intermediate guys to deep threats.  Every team started to look for the next Randy Moss. Seriously, listen to some of these top 10 picks at wide Reciever just a year or two after Moss’ rookie year: Torry Holt (ok, that one worked out just fine), David Boston, Troy Edwards, Peter Warrick (the Bengals drafted this dude 4th overall in 2000), Plaxico Burress, Travis Taylor, David Terrel, Koren Robinson…you get the picture.

That wasn’t the only thing Moss changed. Defenses changed because of him, too. Perhaps the best example I could provide is to simply look within Moss’s own division. In 1999, one year after getting torched by Moss for the first time, the Packers drafted THREE defensive backs with their first three picks: Antuan Edwards, Fred Vinson, and Mike McKenzie. They spent one more on Chris Atkins in round seven. They would continue to add AT LEAST one DB every year Moss was on the Vikings. Remember Bahwoh Jue? You can thank Randy Moss for that pick. The Packers were not the only ones though. The Bears were a year late to the party, but they started stock piling DB’s as well. The league had officially changed to a passer league.

You know what else happened at this point? TV ratings started to skyrocket for the NFL. They started getting HUGE deals. And what did they link that too? Exciting, down field offenses that fans were clamoring for. All of a sudden, rules started to change. Pass interference started to become more and more prevalent. All of a sudden, you could no longer touch a wide receiver after five yards. We all know how this ends, but basically you can no longer touch a WR or the person throwing the ball to him and all of a sudden, like stated before, we have QB’s fearlessly delivering balls 600+ times a season racking up monster yardage. I am a strong believer that the brand of ball Randy Moss played help to implement those changes. Perhaps not overtly, but if you look at cause and effect, signs do point to what Moss was doing and how that appealed to the common person in America. I mean, what would you rather watch? A 70 yard bomb or a three yard run and some punting? Moss changed HOW the game is played, and that is something he was hinting at when saying “numbers aren’t everything”.

-You got Mossed. Seriously. That is a term used in the NFL now by players when a WR makes a catch over a defensive back. It isn’t “you got Rice’d” or “You got Carter’ed” or even “You got Johnson’ed”. Check SHOWTIME Dion Sanders talking about “getting Mossed” in this link. 

-Randy Moss is a super smart person. I know most people think that the sentence I just typed is moronic. But truly, Moss is very smart for a human. He has several business ventures as well as owns a racing team. He is also fascinating to listen to when he talks. Take out the comment that started this whole article and LISTEN to a professional athlete discuss his career and journey in this league. It is just incredible. Not many people have the longevity and have done the things that he has done.

-Randy Moss is pretty funny. And he seems like he has no problem having fun with fans. He also does a ton of charity work. This bullet point doesn’t really seem to help my case for Randy being one of the best WR’s ever, but I wanted to include this funny video all the same:

Seriously, how can you not laugh at that?!

-Randy Moss’ knock against him was always that he never tried hard. Ask Al Harris if he tired hard. Randy Moss falls into the category of “effortless talent” that almost every player lacks. There are very few people in the world that have the ability to perform at the highest level of anything and look effortless doing it. Moss was one of those. He never LOOKED like he was running fast, but he was always three steps behind everyone else. It is the same way Derrik Rose plays basketball. Smooth and effortless efficiency that almost looks like you aren’t even trying in the first place. I think people that have that talent are, in a way, despised by those that do not have. Those that have to work so hard for everything they earn. Moss has god given ability that other people just lack, and most people think he wasted that somehow. However, the results in the end are undeniable. He ended up being one of the greatest to even play the game.

For all of Randy’s short comings, he has never murdered humans or dogs. I, for one, am cheering for him to win a Super Bowl.

Maybe Randy isn’t the greatest statistically of all time, but he is on the podium (top three) in almost every category for a wide receiver. His face is CERTAINLY on the Rushmore of all time wide receivers in the NFL and he is easily a first ballot Hall of Famer. So, when he says “I am the greatest of all time”, well, I am not sure he is WRONG, I just don’t think he is completely right…Either way, we are all so very lucky to watch this man do what he does…go and get the ball when it is in the air.

Add your thoughts to the comments below.

Star Wars Street Fight!

daily morning awesomeness 226 Daily Morning Awesomeness (35 Photos)

8 Celebrities You Might Not Have Known Are Total Geeks!

As any nerd can tell you, being smarter than everyone else has a price. Poor social skills, being grossly over or under weight, being terrible at sports. Skin problems, probably bad eyesight … you get the idea.Yet, there is a whole class of nerds who break that universal rule, who somehow wind up smarter than us, yet also, are so good at being tough or being hot that they’ve got legions of adoring fans. Maybe they’re just lucky, or maybe they turned their backs on God and sought solace in the infernal embrace of a giving demonic patron. The fact is, it is not fair that these people exist and we suggest you take it up with your local clergy.We’re talking about people like …

Natalie Portman

When Golden Globe winner Natalie Portman was 10 years old, a representative of Revlon found her at a pizza parlor and asked her if she wanted to model. Portman turned her down and said that, all things considered, she would much rather act.

Portman was a straight A student in high school, although it was a public school and we can tell you first hand that most of what they teach involves premarital sex and how to keep your gun properly oiled. While playing the Queen Amidala in The Phantom Menace, she skipped the premiere to study for her final exams. This, by the way, got her into Harvard (If you ask us, it’s really a toss-up between the Ivy League and non-alcoholic sparkling cider at the kids’ table with baby Anakin.).

Portman was a research assistant in a psychology lab and put in some time working for the youngest law professor in the history of Harvard, Alan Dershowitz. You may remember him as a member of O.J. Simpson’s legal “dream team,” permanently earning himself another place in history as somebody you never want to get in an argument with about anything, ever. He even gave her a shout out in his book The Case for Israel.

By the time she got her bachelor’s, she had studied four languages in addition to Hebrew, the language of her birth, had been published in professional science journals twice, killed a butt load of aliens, and generally made us look like big human-shaped piles of poo. Seriously, when we were 10 years old, we wanted to be doctors or space cowboys or, at the very least, fire fighters. The closest we’ve gotten so far is one of those little shiny red fireman helmets.

Recently Natalie returned to the ground she covered with Dershowitz when she starred as anarchist apprentice Evey Hammond in the terrorist fable V for Vendetta. This got her invited to Columbia to speak to a class on terrorism and antiterrorism and, more importantly, bridging the raw, seemingly eternal divide between comic book and Star Wars geeks.

The Offspring lead singer Dexter Holland

Bryan “Dexter” Holland is the kind of dude who, if he can’t get into a rock show, grabs a buddy and starts The Offspring. Half a decade later, he was signed with Epitaph Records to join NOFX and Rancid, with whom his band is partly credited for bringing punk rock back into the angst-dripping hearts of suburban kids who really don’t have much to complain about except the emptiness of their idle middle-class lives. To go down that road, however, he had to give up a pretty straight-arrow career path of over-achieving drudgery that probably would have given him some of his best moody material–and a sick minivan to go with it.

Dexter, as it turns out, grew up in the high-rent suburbs West Garden Grove, California.

He went to Pacifica High School and, instead of setting fires and declaring anarchy, went ahead and graduated as valedictorian instead. He went on to the University of Southern California, became a pre-med student and eventually got his Master’s Degree in molecular biology. He was actually on the way to a Ph.D. before dropping out to follow his dream of throwing glistening globs of his own biological molecules all over screaming audiences night after night.

In his spare time he decided to also become a licensed airline pilot and flew himself around the world. Hey, why not?

#5 & 6.
Underworld‘s Kate Beckinsale and Kevin Grevioux

Let’s talk about Kate Beckinsale first. Well, there’s the posh and personable accent. Then, there’s the “shaped out of clay and given breath by a prayer to the gods and a slowly expanding pillar of light” body. Also, there’s that face.

So how does one prepare to star in a campy Matrix-with-werewolves franchise? Why, by becoming a literary prodigy and mastering several languages, obviously. Beckinsale wrote award-winning short stories and poems (taking home the national W.H. Smith Literary Award twice in a row). That love for the written language took her to Oxford University, where Beckinsale mastered French, German and Russian and had her nose buried in French and Russian texts caked with several lifetimes’ worth of “who the hell gives a damn about Baratynsky” dust. She was on her way to being the world’s sexiest librarian in the world’s emptiest library before she finally dropped out to eventually star in a movie about a war between vampires and werewolves.

Meanwhile, the biggest, baddest werewolf in the film was this guy …

Kevin Grevioux, who played Raze. This dude, seemingly born to play horror movie monsters, served as a research assistant at the world famous National Institutes of Health and got his degree in microbiology from Howard University. While pursuing his master’s in genetic engineering, Grevioux discovered he was more interested in film and moved to Los Angeles. The role of Raze was perfect for Grevioux because, well, he wrote the movie.

We’d like to have been a fly on the wall during that shoot, with Beckinsale quoting Russian poetry and Grevioux tossing out cancer cures in their spare time. Then, they get interrupted so they can go play werewolves and vampires.

Vin Diesel

Neither Vin nor Diesel is his real name (it’s Mark Vincent), but it was a given that creatures like this do not have names so much as titles. He’s lately known more for the movie The Pacifier (original working name, Oh My God, what am I watching? Oh, right, poop.), and not known, thankfully, for his “comedic” turn in Find Me Guilty. But, one can hardly mention Vin Diesel’s name without remembering severed carotid’s and snapped necks.

Multifacial, a movie he produced for $3,000 (and which, surprisingly, is not porn) gained the attention of Steven Spielberg, who cast him in Saving Private Ryan. This started off Vin Diesel’s film career in a long string of roles being surly, growling one-liners, looking intimidating without even trying, and racking up a body count (huge) and number of Oscars (zero) to rival Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime.

And, the whole time, he was playing Dungeons and Dragons. Has been for over 20 years. Seriously, somewhere on his body is a tattoo of his player character’s name. Now, that’s hardcore gamester.

His geek flag flew higher when he opened up his own gaming development house, Tigon Studios, just because he was tired of people making crappy games based on movies. The very fabric of existence was rent asunder when, to the shocked and frightened gasps of a reviewing public, it turned out The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay, the first video game based on a movie since Goldeneye was not just better than the movie, but better than just about every other game that came out that year. It’s average review score was 90 percent, according to MetaCritic.

Porn star Asia Carrera

Retired porn star Asia Carrera, real name Jessica Steinhauser, is a bit of a legend in the porn industry. With 36-26-36 measurements, she performed in a jaw-dropping 400 hundred films in her career and exchanged an unthinkable amount of bodily fluids. She’s also mother of two.

She calls herself “the nerd of porn,” and we assumed it was some kind of in-joke, until we saw her credentials. Here is somebody who studied piano as a child and by the age of 14 was playing in Carnegie Hall.

At 16, she went to Japan and taught English classes. She was a state spelling champ, in the National Mathematics League, a Spanish National Honor Society member, placing in National Geography, Language and Math Olympiads, and is a member of Mensa. That got her a free ride to Rutgers, where she double-majored in business and Japanese. This naturally inspired her to change her first name to Asia and become an entrepreneur in America’s fastest growing business.

Either that, or her self-professed hatred of her parents’ pressure on her to succeed academically made her lash out by riding random guys reverse cowgirl on camera. Whatever works.

When she and her brother get in the room together, she admits a tendency to “geek out,” and would rather volley IMs back and forth than hold an actual conversation. The sex lives of some of our staff members are, to be honest, quite similar, so we can relate. Her geek hallmark, however, is her love of LAN parties and Unreal Tournament (handle: megab*tchgoddess).

Now that she’s no longer taking shots to the face while sprawled out on pool tables, you can expect her to dish it just as hard and fast online. Keep an eye out for her self-made skins, or download them yourself:

Queen guitarist Brian May

In case your musical knowledge doesn’t pre-date the ’90s, Brian May played lead guitar, wrote for and was the sometimes lead singer of Queen. He put the words “We Will Rock You” (surprisingly), “Who Wants to Live Forever” (ironically), and “Fat-Bottomed Girls” (not so surprisingly) in Freddie Mercury’s mouth. Sometimes Freddie shrugged and said, “Ah, bloody ‘ell, I broke my last bottle of Goldschlager with ‘at ‘igh C, so’s ‘ow about I shut my gob and let you ‘ave a go at it?” and sang back up to him.

In the early ’70s, he also had a Bachelor of Sciences degree with honors from the Imperial College of London and was in the middle of his doctorate studying how light reflects off of dust floating in space and the movement of that dust within the solar system. While we at Cracked are sure that Brian May’s heart was pounding with excitement when he first signed up for the classes, we admit that you probably had to be there to give a rat’s ass.

May also apparently grew tired of it, because at that point he took 30 years off from his doctorate to become a millionaire, one of the best guitar players in the world and a member of one of the greatest rock bands in history.

When he wasn’t busy rocking faces, May fiddled around with astrophysics, co-authoring two scientific papers and the book Bang! – The Complete History of the Universe with Christ Lintott and Patrick Moore. He also has been a regular guest on the latter’s show The Sky at Night for years). Finally, after he was satisfied that he had squeezed all the rocking he could into one lifetime, he went back and got his doctorate in the fall of ’07.

Then, he was appointed Chancellor of Liverpool John Moores University, meaning we now have a man who can look upon both Albert Einstein and Eddie Van Halen and ask why they didn’t get more done.

Dolph Lundgren

Mr. Lundgren was an almost-superstar back in the ’80s, having played comic hero The Punisher (1989 version) and even He-Man (1987). But, his greatest acting accomplishments is beating Apollo Creed into something resembling grape jelly and inspiring the greatest Rocky montage of all time.

As it turns out, this towering blond monster who casually told Sylvester Stallone, “I will break you,” could have, in fact, probably calculated the amount of effort (in force pounds per square inch and Joules expenditure) needed to do just that in his head.

The man reportedly has an IQ of 160. He graduated from the Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden, got his master’s in chemical engineering, then was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to MIT. After just two weeks of that, his superhuman intellect allowed him to calculate that a life spent inventing life-saving chemicals would mathematically contain less awesome than one movie spent playing He-Man.

Hey, did we mention that he speaks five languages (French, Swedish, German, English and Italian)? Or, that he’s a Pentathlon Team Leader and a former Ranger? And a third-degree black belt?

So, really, to play a superhuman machine of destruction in Rocky IV, he still had to tone it down quite a bit. Hell, this man had to tone it down to play He-Man.

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Awesome Star Wars Jacket!

Lots of Star Wars this week, but this one was too good to pass up! I need one of these!

Reversable Wookie/Hoth Jacket