In a feature literally named after the NFL’s penchant for constant, unyielding incompetence, you might’ve guessed that today we’d be honoring1 the League itself again. And yet, even as both the Raiders and Steelers lost their games due to controversial-but-true-to-the-rulebook verdicts from their referees, there’s only one place truly deserving of our incompetent gaze. I’m looking at you, Seattle.
The Seahawks have a well-established reputation as a dominant team, their hype built on the foundation of two recent Super Bowl appearances – including one victory – and a multiyear run as one of the greatest defenses of all-time. Injuries to their defense and ineffectiveness along the offensive line have somewhat dampened Seattle’s reputation for excellence this year but they remain a formidable foe, especially at home where they’ve had one of the only legitimate home-field advantages in the sport over the last few years. Even as 2017 seemed to be turning into a down year for the franchise, Russell Wilson vaulted himself into the MVP discussion with a series of masterful performances including an impressive defeat of fellow MVP-candidate Carson Wentz’s up-and-coming Eagles squad in Week 13.
It looks like Russell Wilson and Doug Baldwin are in the midst of their annual “where the fuck has this been all season?” scoring frenzy. They’ve both gone ballistic in their last few weeks and have quietly1 moved up the PPGAR ranks.
Down in Houston, Deandre Hopkins and Will Fuller are still clinging to their high rankings but it’s only a matter of time before they fall off the map because, well, did you see how bad Tom Savage was last week? The guy even admitted he played like crap. (If you’re reading, I appreciate your honesty, Tom.)
Meanwhile, after Adrian Peterson’s departure, Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram are somehow making it work in a shared backfield in New Orleans with both runners now in the top 11 for RBs in terms of PPGAR. If they continue to put up numbers like this – as Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman did for the 2016 Falcons – and the Saints’ surprisingly stalwart defense continues to play this well, New Orleans could make some noise down the stretch and into the playoffs.
Once upon a time, when the endearing story lines of Duck Dynasty and Here Comes Honey Boo Boo captivated our hearts and people were twerking to the revolutionary sounds of ‘Timber’ and ‘Work Bitch,’ there was a running back ready to take the world by storm. His name was Circle Button. Um, I mean Eddie Lacy.
In his first two years (2013-2014), the 2nd round pick rushed for over 2,300 yards becoming Green Bay’s first 1,000 yard rusher since 2009. Across that frame, he averaged 4.4 ypc, caught 77 balls, and scored 24 TDs. Lacy was dynamic, quick-footed and, well, thin. By 2015, he seemed primed to become one of the league’s top running backs and was being drafted 3rd overall. Lemme say that one again. Eddie Lacy was being drafted 3rdoverall.
Then in 2015 Lacy took a hard hit in a Week 2 contest against the Seattle Seahawks and never quite recovered. He missed the 1,000 yard mark for the first time in his career due to a massive drop in carries1 and followed 2015 up with another injury-shortened season in 2016.
Weighed down by injuries, poor performance and, um, weight, Lacy wasn’t re-signed by Green Bay and instead signed a lucrative deal with Seattle. He entered this year’s training camp 30 lbs overweight. Dude was so fat, he was put on an incentive program just to motivate him to lose weight. That’s not a fat joke. He was literally put on an incentive program to lose weight. The motivational tactic seemed to work as Lacy appeared to get his shit together, dropping the excess poundage2 and making the Seahawks’ final roster. Shortly after, rumors started swirling that he was going to be the workhorse of the Seahawks offense, that he “looked great,” that “he’s definitely 100 percent” and of course that “none of these are real quotes, they’re just generic statements that tend to surround Lacy.” Spoiler alert: Lacy hasn’t looked great, hasn’t been a workhorse and may not be at 100%. Shocking, I know.
In the first two weeks of the season, Lacy rode the pine, rushing for only three yards in Week 1 and following that up with an appearance as a healthy scratch for Week 2. To say the least, it’s not looking good for Circle Button. Lacy finds himself on a team with three other legitimate rushing threats in Thomas Rawls, Chris Carson, and C.J. Prosise – all of which can also contribute to the passing game – leaving Lacy on the fringes of the 53 man roster.
Despite the fact that as of writing this, Lacy is owned in 95% of all ESPN fantasy leagues, it sure looks like we’ve already arrived at the end of his season and maybe even his career. Which is really disappointing. But for some nagging injuries, Lacy could have been great. While there’s still hope for Lacy, it’s small…unlike Lacy himself.3 He’s only 27 years old and while his weight struggles have shown that he isn’t exactly Bo Jackson in the weight room, he should be able to get one more chance to prove that he’s got the dedication that it takes to make it in the NFL. Maybe he’ll even be serviceable on a new team next year. Or maybe we’ll be talking, once again, about the wasted promise of Eddie Lacy.