Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Let's Talk Teams

But before we do that, I want to talk a little bit about the format of Chick 101. When football season actually starts (Thurs, Sept 10th), I'll inform you of what you need to know before and after the actual games.

For example: On Saturday nights, I'll be summarizing the key things you'll want to watch for during Sunday's big games. Then, on Sunday nights, I'll give you the highlights of what actually happened in those games, preparing you completely for the watercooler conversations on Monday. The Thursday and Monday night info will be less comprehensive, but you get the gist of what I'm saying.

SO, check back frequently when the season starts (or sign up for convenient email delivery at the top right corner of the page!) for all you need to know to hold your own with the guys. For now, we continue on with Rules, Players, Teams and all that good stuff.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Quarterback: The Golden Boy

So, we start with the most important and usually most well known position on a football team--the QUARTERBACK. He resides on the OFFENSE (the guys who have the ball. The DEFENSE is the group of guys on the other side that are trying to stop the ball.)

The QUARTERBACK is usually the metaphoric “hero” to his team and the fans. Usually a tall, extremely athletic, handsome, All-American “Golden Boy,” the quarterback is almost like the leader of a gang with his “line” (shall we say almost like a chorus line?) of teammates trying to defend him from the other guys so he can perform his heroic duties.

Tom Brady
Some quarterbacks you've definitely heard of: TOM BRADY (Giselle), TONY ROMO (Jessica's ex), and PEYTON MANNING (brother of ELI on the NY Giants--also a QB). And of course, there is the infamous MICHAEL VICK (dog killer). These guys could fill up an entire US Weekly by themselves!

HIKE!
The QB leans over the guy in front of him (who is bending over--its kind of like they're spooning while standing up) while holding his outstretched hands down through the other guys legs. Awkward! I know you've seen this pose...most women think it looks a little...invasive?

After he yells a bunch of random words (like numbers and colors...think: "Blue, 32!, Green, 17!, Hike!"), the other guy HIKES it to him (tosses it backwards through his legs). This is also called the SNAP.

Anyway, he then throws/passes (same thing), or hands the ball (called a HAND-OFF) to his awaiting RECEIVERS.
Tony Romo

If you think football is boring, start looking at it this way: It's game day. There are two gangs—-a la West Side Story—-with two leaders, both wanting the same thing, with only one prevailing at the end. It's the Jocks versus.....the Jocks! Drama, drama, drama. I love the fact that (usually) football is just as dramatic as any soap-opera, reality show, or even a good catfight. You just have to know where to look.



Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Note on Plays and Downs

Did any of you watch any pre-season Football this past Sunday? Did you understand Plays and Downs a little bit more? Did you tell your husbands/friends that football was sort of like sitting in traffic? Good! I'm sure they were impressed.

One thing you may have noticed is when the announcer says something like, "3rd and 7" or 2nd and 10." This little phrase is uttered constantly throughout the game. I'm here to tell you that you actually know what this means, even though you think you don't!

So the "3rd" or "2nd" reference refers to the DOWN, as in "3rd DOWN (or try)." The second reference refers to how many yards left they have to go before they make it to the next DOWN. So, it should really sound like this: "3rd DOWN, and 7 YARDS TO GO."

Sometimes they say it this way, sometimes they don't. You are expected to know these little shortcuts. And now you do! :)

Stay tuned: The Quarterback post is coming!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Football: Why dost thou exist?

(or, Basic Rules 101)

Ok, so the objective is this: Eleven dudes have to move an egg-shaped ball down the field towards the other teams endzone. (Remember the endzone? Of course you do.) They can run with the ball, throw (or pass) the ball to another dude, or kick the ball. They get four tries to go 10 yards. Every time they try, it's called a "DOWN," basically because when the guy with the ball goes "down" (as in falls or gets crushed into the ground), the try, or "PLAY" is over. See simplified illustration below:


(CLICK ON PICTURE TO ACTUALLY SEE IT)

If they DO get the 10 yards covered, they get another four tries to make it another 10 yards. Are we getting this? It's like driving through traffic--you move forward a little bit, then stop. Move forward, stop. Wait. Discuss. Commercial. Eat some chips.

You get what I'm saying.

I've decided that the most torturous aspect of watching football on TV is the waiting in between plays. There are only 60 minutes in the WHOLE GAME. Technically. We ALL know that those games go on for hours and hours. The reason it TAKES so long is because my illustration is really simplified. In other words, like I said before, they get four tries to go only 10 YARDS. So, technically, it could take like 16 tries (or plays) to actually get to the endzone (instead of my lovely 3 plays).

Back to the rules. (almost done!)

If the Pink team doesn't make the next down in 4 tries, the ball goes to the other team and it starts all over again. Sometimes, if the ball is close to the endzone on the 4th down, a PUNTER (dude who kicks) will try to kick the ball through the end posts for what's called a FIELD GOAL (worth 3 points). A TOUCHDOWN, on the other hand, is worth 6 points.

And, I think that's enough for the day! Next entry: The Quarterback
(There will be a slight delay until the next post as I will be out of town, but don't despair! I'll be back before you know it)

Also, I am being allowed to sit in on Mike's Fantasy Football draft this coming Saturday. There will be juicy tidbits galore. Stay tuned!


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Lesson #1: The Field


So today I actually painted a football field for my ladies. That's right. I painted! I think football should be pretty and stylish. Is that so much to ask? So its missing a couple lines. Who cares? All you need to know is that its 100 yards long with a line every 5 yards. Those little white tick marks each represent a yard.

Simple, right?

There is a team (represented in PINK) that starts on one side of the 50 yard line, bordered by a 10 yard space (called the ENDZONE) and another team (represented in GREEN) on the other. Very basically, the Pink Team wants to run with a ball to the Green Team's endzone. The Green team wants to run it into the Pink Team's endzone. Got it?

Some field facts: So, the field itself is 100 yards long, but with the 10 yard endzones, the entire space is 120 yards long. (Not really important) What kills me is that its 53 and 1/3 yards wide!!?? wtf? Could they have picked a more random measurement? Anyway, I digress.

There are 2 goal posts at the back of the endzones, and the home team's logo is usually painted on the center of the field. That's about it! See what you've learned today? All sorts of interesting stuff. ;)

RANDOM FACT OF THE DAY:
The oldest team is The Arizona Cardinals (you know, Rod Tidwell's team in Jerry Maguire) They can trace their history back to 1890 in Chicago.


Monday, August 10, 2009

The Season Has Begun! Sort of.

Whew! Football season is officially upon us, as there was a pre-season Football game on last night.

How do I know this? Well, two reasons: 1)It had to be turned off in our household to finish True Blood (Hey, I plan on watching a lot of football this season, but c'mon, pre-season is a little much for a girl), and 2)the numerous posts from my girl friends on facebook that all went something like this: "UGH, football season!! Saying goodbye to my husband till Feb!"

Well, I am here to help. Let's take this daunting, male-DOMINATED subject and break it down. We are going to start SLOWLY. I'm gonna do my best to make you not simply understand, but REMEMBER certain facts, positions and rules of the game that will make you an active (as active as you wanna be) participant on Sundays.

If you're anything like me, football is a "necessary evil." Necessary in the sense that if I don't at least slightly know what's going on during the game, I tend to become evil, bored and extremely restless. I say let's just dive in and tackle it head on! Ready, my ladies? Here we go.
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