Rodgers embraces the Force; Decker makes mistake

Welcome to the Around The NFL End Around, a weekly look back at the world of the National Football League. Dan Hanzus serves as your guide.

It was a good week for ...

1. Blaine Gabbert: If Gabbert becomes a long-term answer in San Francisco, he's one of the biggest comeback stories of the decade, right? Blaine Gabbert was the face of crappy quarterback play. Now he's playing like the guy the Jaguars thought they were getting five years ago.

2. Michael Crabtree: The rare riches-to-rags-to-riches story. We don't imagine Richard Sherman believes this was money well spent by Reggie McKenzie.

3. Johnny Manziel: Johnny. Listen to me. All you have to do is make it to Sunday without going out. Throw your car keys in a lake and check into a motel where no entourage member can find you.

It was a bad week for ...

1. DeMarco Murray: The running back played just 14 snaps in Sunday's win in Foxborough, then complained to the owner that Chip Kelly is being mean to him. The good news for the Eagles? Murray is owed just $7 million guaranteed next season!

2. Frank Cignetti: The man always had a name better suited for the life of a grizzled private investigator or an obsessed detective who plays by his own rules because the only rule to him is that the bad guys finish last. Perhaps he can follow this path after the Rams asked him to turn in his gun and badge on Monday.

3. Teddy Bridgewater:Throw it, Teddy! Throw it!

Tweet HEAT of the Week

Right cross.

Upper cut.

Let's call it a draw. On some level, I kind of feel badly for Browner, whose claim to fame now is that he's pretty much the worst cornerback in the NFL. We have data and tape that don't lie. What does it say about the Saints that they surely know this and still can't find somebody to replace him?

Take the week off, Browns

I get it, Browns. Every week, you have your "Film Breakdown" segment, sponsored by Earth Overlord Papa John. But how about we just skip any retrospective on a game in which you got absolutely pasted in your building by a division rival? Just let it breathe. Paul Kruger isn't going to complain, nor will the fan base.

What, you can say the same thing about the weekly column? Listen PAL, don't change the subject.

Someone help Tom Coughlin

The Giants' growing catastrophe of crushing losses looks to have finally gotten to the General. Let's just find him a nice place to live.

Bills fans still insane

Yes, I've had my eye on the increasingly insane behavior going on at Bills tailgates this season (unless this has always been the scene in Western New York?), but I've steered clear for two reasons: 1) Deadspin has done a nice job owning this beat and 2) Drunk Bills fans cannot post an online video without dropping at least 12 f-bombs every 30 seconds. We're a family site, you know.

But I do want to acknowledge what's going on and call attention to this attempt by one fan to Undertaker choke slam a troubled Santa through a plastic table. This is especially notable because the maneuver fails and Santa ends out splayed across the table, his spine irreparably damaged and Zubaz peeking into view.

Meanwhile, on the Throne Of Ease ...

Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelmanwere back at practice, offering a reminder that there's no way anyone in the AFC beats the Patriots in January. Hooray.

What the what?

How did Jets wide receiver Eric Decker end up on his wife's Christmas album? Here's how he explained it, via

"Her producer came over for her to sing some tracks. She said, 'Eric, jump on and sing it once.' So I sang it, thinking, 'Whatever, it's kind of a joke, maybe it's sent out to family members.' With a little help from Auto-Tune (an audio processor), they made me sound real good. I was surprised. I mean, it was good, but Auto-Tune made it sound a lot better."

This is a bad explanation. Keep it real, Eric. "My wildly attractive wife told me to do this, so I did." That's it. Just own it. And, for the record, I'm not sure the Auto-Tune does Decker much favors. He kind of sounds disturbed.

Then again, the lyrics of "Baby, It's Cold Outside" don't do him any favors. This is -- with the possible exclusion of Santa Baby -- the creepiest Christmas song in the game. I wouldn't be surprised if was deemed culturally unacceptable in the next 20 years. It's a song about a dude who doesn't want his girl to leave, so he essentially blocks her exit, moves in closer and pours her another drink. That's legit problematic!

This is a good touchdown celebration

I remain all in on Antonio Brown touchdown celebrations. His front flip into the end zone last month remains my favorite celebration of the season, and Sunday night's goal post hug -- with security guard caught in the crossfire -- might take the silver medal.

It's a damn travesty he had a FedEx envelope sitting on his stool this week. He should have received a trophy.

Let's keep it real Shady

Some low-octane drama between Eagles coach Chip Kelly and running back LeSean McCoy, who was traded to the Bills in the offseason. Kelly acknowledged to reporters this week that the Shady trade could have been handled better and said he'd like to shake McCoy's hand before Sunday's Bills-Eagles matchup. That prompted this response from McCoy.

"Listen man. Chip can't shake s---. At all. Nothing. He knows this. That's why I said it -- I know him. He's very intelligent, so I can read between the lines."

McCoy repeatedly told reporters he has no animosity with Kelly. Which is crap! LeSean McCoy despises him some Chip Kelly. Let's just lay it all out there. You're already telling teammates how much this game means. Don't play coy with the rest of us. "It is my duty to destroy Chip Kelly.

I would forget the LeSean McCoy ladies-only party if he did this.

Quote of the Week

"I was forced to learn a hard lesson."

-- Johnny Manziel, on his two-game benching for partying in Austin during Cleveland's bye week

How many times have the Browns and fans heard a variation on this sentiment from Johnny Football? Browns officials must spend half their work day banging their heads against the wall.

Rodgers Star Wars guy

While Eric Decker is singing on inappropriate Christmas songs with wife, Aaron Rodgers is getting amped up for the new Star Wars movie with actress girlfriend Olivia Munn.

This is undeniably dorky, but what do you expect from a guy who watches Jeopardy! every night? We kid, it's actually quite endearing. Meanwhile, if you're a Packers fan and a Star Wars guy, find out what's the closest theater to Green Bay's practice facility. Chances are Rodgers will be at one of those shows next Friday.

Owner dabbing is a thing now

The Panthers' reaction to Jerry Richardson's adorable dab makes me want them to never lose this season.

Hero of the Week: Dez Bryant

Dez is trapped in Cassel purgatory this season, so why not find another way to make this year worthwhile? The Cowboys wide receiver had a interesting reaction when told that the NFL is putting together a committee to take another look at the confounding catch rule. Bryant, of course, was robbed of a catch in the playoffs last season that could have sent the Cowboys to the NFC Championship Game.

"That's cool!" he said. "They need to invite me. Tell them they need to call me, so I can have my input."

I don't know if Bryant was serious, but let's hope he is. It would make a ton of sense to have a player involved with the process. They. Need. To. Get. This. Right.

Villain of the Week: Cam Newton enemies of joy

That's NFL official Doug Rosenbaum and an unidentified ball boy who were actively attempting to keep Cam Newton from handing a football to a Panthers fan in the stands. Speaking of rules that could use a tweak.

Just let Cam live, unless he's messing with banners. That s--- was not cool.

Until next time ...

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content

Purchase single game tickets for the 2022 season