The Tuesday Morning Quarterback can’t read

Second-guessing ESPN columnists is more Erik’s thing, but I couldn’t resist this.  In his NFC preview, Gregg “Tuesday Morning Quarterback” Easterbrook blasts John Fox for blaspheming:

“We’re owed a little bit of luck by the football gods, if there is such a thing,” Panthers coach John Fox told Sports Illustrated during training camp. Fox doubts the existence of the football gods? He lacks faith, despite their many signs and wonders? Maybe Fox has been reading historical revisionism that claims folklore stories about football gods are just sociological accretions from prescientific times. But to start off the season questioning the existence of the football gods! Oh, they shall smite down the Carolina Panthers. Yea, verily, the Panthers shall be smote.

Apparently Easterbrook can’t disentangle basic syntax.  Let’s rewind the tape.  Here’s what Fox said:

 “We’re owed a little bit of luck by the football gods, if there is such a thing,”

Fox here disputes the existence of *luck*, not “the football gods.”  Had he been denying the existence of the gods, he would have said, “if they exist.”  But it’s customary for coaches and other control freaks to look skeptically at luck, which tends to favor the well-prepared.  (Even Obi-Wan said, “In my experience, there’s no such thing as luck.”)

I’ll concede that, in a perfect world, “if there is such a thing” would follow “luck,” but not many people would do that when speaking off-the-cuff.

In other football news, my punishment for missing the fantasy league‘s draft last Saturday was . . . LaDainian Tomlinson.   I *certainly* learned my lesson!  Suckers. 🙂

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5 Responses to The Tuesday Morning Quarterback can’t read

  1. Frothy McBaldman says:

    TMQ is penitential reading at its finest. Easterbrook’s willingness to comment on films he hasn’t screened, games he hasn’t seen, and books he hasn’t read is a thing of legend.

  2. Alex says:

    To play devil’s advocate, he could be using the entire phrasing “Luck by the football gods” as the “if there is such a thing”, although this is still sloppy English , and the fact that ‘quarterback’ is in his title mentally ranks him in my mind somewhere around the IQ of a bowl of Rice Krispies.

  3. Idleworship says:

    I actually enjoy TMQ but at the same I completely agree with Frothy. On so many occasions, I have found him to be completely wrong factually. Doesn’t stop him from having a strong opinion on the subject though.

  4. Mark says:

    This could also be John Fox’s grammatical error. He could mean “thing” to be referring to “football gods”, despite the obvious usage error.

    Are you willing to believe that the NFL coach’s syntax is perfect to begin with?

  5. jbj says:

    Certainly it could be Fox’s error–but that’s a pretty slim reed to base a joke on: The presumption of error in an technically accurate sentence.

    I like the TMQ, but think that–even more than Simmons–he would profit from an editor.