NFL Power Rankings, Balki Style

At the beginning of football season, my pal Jeremy approached me with an idea. He wanted someone to go head-to-head with him making picks against the spread and write about them for his site. Even though I like sports, I’ve never cared enough about the NFL to follow it closely, but I agreed to play along anyway with one twist: I’d use the Balki Bartokomous Method to pick my winners.

What’s the Balki Bartokomous Method? On an old episode of “Perfect Strangers,” Balki and Larry entered their office football pool– this was when they worked at the Chicago Chronicle, not under Mr. Twinkacetti at the Ritz Discount Emporium, FYI– and football-ignorant Balki repeatedly won while football nut Larry continually lost. The reason? Balki picked his winners not based on any football information, but by comparing the teams’ mascots and deciding who would win in a fight.

So, Jeremy, who knows the game, made his picks based on knowledge while I made my picks based on mascot toughness. Surprisingly, our records weren’t that far apart, meaning betting on football might be one of the dumbest things you can do with your money.

Anyway, I wasn’t able to make picks every week, but you can see our write-ups here. In the meantime, enjoy my Mascot Power Rankings:

NFL Mascot Power Rankings
1 Giants In case you don’t believe in the Giants’ superiority, check this out: they’re big enough to swallow whole any animal on this list, crush any human and annhilate any other random entity without exerting too much effort. Plus, they say shit like "fee-fi-fo-fum" before they kick your ass. How cold is that?
2 Jets It’s unwise to bet against anything that comes equipped with missles. Or Lasers.
3 Bears They have heft, surprising agility, sharp teeth and dextrous claws. Bears may be fatties, but they certainly are dangerous. I know Stephen Colbert is with me on this one.
4 Bengals They’re gorgeous, regal and they’ve been known to dine on the arms of gay magicians. Don’t use their creampuff schedule as an excuse to underestimate their skill; Bengals deal just as much damage when paired against more formidable opponents.
5 Vikings They have helmets with horns, thrive in the Minnesota cold and have been known to enjoy eating Lutefisk. Most would consider themselves lucky to have one of these attributes. Few would enjoy fighting someone with all three.
6 Lions You’d think a beast that can be held off with nothing more than a whip and a chair wouldn’t be much of a beast at all, but you don’t become the king of the jungle by being weak. Think of all the tough shit in the jungle: snakes, oppressive heat, snakes, evil monkeys, snakes. fucking snakes. Lions kicked all their asses. Even the snakes.
7 Titans Take either the homoerotic belioinclothed Clash of the Titans Titans or the Wall Street, ultra-rich Titans of Industry Titans. Either way, you’ve got a group of dudes who don’t get their asses kicked too often even though logic dictates that they should.
8 Raiders Pirates are always tough, but the Raiders are the better of the two teams of pirates on our board because they have a helmet, swords and an eyepatch in their logo. They’re mildly retarded swashbucklers with poor depth perception. A dangerous combination if I ever saw one.
9 Buccaneers Being pirates, the Bucs are also tough, but lose points for incorporating a feather into their logo. Whereas the Raiders will go bonkers and cut your ass, the Bucs will just tickle you into submission. Which would you rather fight?
10 Cowboys Spending their whole lives riding horses and rarely seeing women, Cowboys’ crotches are almost completely useless. As such, they have little to think about other than kicking ass.
11 Patriots America! Fuck yeah!
12 Panthers Extremely fast and, if black, also extremely militant.
13 Texans Texans are slowly losing power, but at the moment, one of them controls the world’s only remaining superpower. Clearly, they aren’t done fucking us over yet.
14 Chiefs Good at: being resourceful, killing large animals with primative weapons. Bad at: negotiating land deals, fighting whitey.
15 Redskins Pretty much like Chiefs, except the Redskins are a cross-section of Native American life, while the Chiefs are just the elite Redskins. Plus, their nickname is way more insulting.
16 Jaguars Someone told me Jaguars are ladies’ cars. You know, like Miatas. Is this true? I had no idea. Can I get confirmation on this?
17 Rams They have tough-ass horns, but they’re also among the most moronic animals on the planet. Good in strictly physical matchups, but where strategy is concerned, the Rams are easily beaten.
18 Broncos The more wild of the two horse teams, Broncos have it in them to trample innocents or throw passengers off their backs. I mean, they paralyzed Superman. That has to mean something.
19 Colts Colts, however, are more tame. They have plenty of strength, but they’re too pretty. Nobody really likes them except for little girls.
20 Bills You can ignore Bills, you can avoid calls from creditors and you can file for Bankruptcy, but eventually, the Bills will beat you.
21 Browns It’s a good thing Cleveland isn’t in the market for more professional sports teams, because they’re running out of racial epithets for their mascots. They appealed to the NHL for a hockey team, but the league considered the slim marketing opportunities for a franchise called the Cleveland Chinks and nixed the deal.
22 49ers They may not have all their teeth, but they do have gold. And pickaxes. And really strong homemade booze. It’s probably a good idea not a great idea to insult their dirty overalls, but they’re relatively docile unless provoked.
23 Steelers Strong-willed and strong physically, Steelers would make formidable opponents if they weren’t so damned tired from working 18-hour shifts. Plus, their thick beards and even thicker layers of grime prevent them from being as aerodynamic as they could be.
24 Falcons Birds are generally not great fighters, but Falcons have the largest talons of this bunch. Therefore, if you’re going to get your eyeballs poked out, they’re probably going to get poked out by a Falcon.
25 Packers Paying someone to move sounds like a good idea, but when you open your boxes and find out they broke your prized Hummel collection, you realize what assholes Packers really are. Plus, you probably tipped them even though they did a shitty job, which makes you feel like an asshole. Packers are no good.
26 Ravens Pretty much only famous for starring in one Poe poem, Ravens aren’t very fight-ready. Their only hope is to spread and contract bird flu. That’s not really a winning situation.
27 Eagles The funniest patriotic window decal I saw in the wake of 9/11 was an Eagle bursting through an American flag with a cross in its claws. I mean, I’m sure this seems tough to someone. It might even make a few tear up and burst into a few verses of Lee Greenwood. Eagles just make me laugh, though. Plus, they’re endangered. What kind of pussy allows his species to become endangered? Sheesh.
28 Chargers Seriously, what the fuck is a Charger?
29 Cardinals Red is a fearsome color, but I wouldn’t take anything that might be called "dainty" in a fight.
30 Seahawks Their only line of defense is precision pooping. I mean, it’s irritating, but it’s nothing that can’t be cured by a trip through the car wash.
31 Saints Saints are easy to like, but do you want to back someone who, by definition, can’t fight? I mean, if they kicked someone’s ass, they wouldn’t be Saints anymore. They’d just be dudes. Come to think of it, why isn’t there a team called The Dudes?
32 Dolphins Dolphins are, hands down, the wussiest mascot in all of professional sports. Way to keep getting caught in tuna nets, assholes.
Saturday January 14th 2006, 11:40 am
Filed under: Football,Sports



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