We had a tremendous time in Aruba. What an terrific place! 92 degrees and a nice 15 mile per hour warm breeze. We stayed in downtown Oranjestad at the Renaissance. It was all inclusive and they shuttled you to a private island with two sides. Family and adults only. Beautiful beach, beach service and an outdoor bar. Yours truly would get an ice bucket of 4 Balashi beers and sip them while I read my book. Finished Trinity which was tremendous and then jumped into Leon Uris’ first book, Battle Cry about World War II. Finished it in 4 days, might be better than Trinity. Yes, I did work out. They had a gym there. Two days I did some dumbbell complexes of Military Press, Squats, Rows, Pushups. I ran on the treadmill for 2-3 miles. Other days I did 200 pushups and went for a run outside. Gained only two pounds and I was pretty much in double figures every day with cocktails.
I loved drinking my morning coffee at the pool. Never looked at the clock, or my email. Didn’t text, telephone or email the whole time there. Brought my laptop and had free Wi-Fi, never used the internet either. What I didn’t like was two things. A lot of people smoke there, but not indoors and I don’t like gambling anymore. I stated in the last post, I was looking forward to it. Threw $30 in a video poker machine didn’t get better than a Full House. At least I got a free Dewar’s on the rocks out of it.
One thing I would say is, if you’re looking for a party, Aruba isn’t the place, But a great vacation in the Caribbean with super friendly un-pushy people, lots of restaurants (went to El Gaucho’s) out of the hurricane belt, then you’ll love it. It’s a desert island on the sea. I also developed a liking for running again.
New house is at the bottom of a valley in a cul-de-sac. Cell phone reception is so poor, we’re getting a free network extender. Being in the valley, is like running in the mountains. I have a 3.5 mile course which is so hilly that it’s like running 6. First 1/2 mile straight up hill, then it levels off for a 1/2 mile. Then you have a choice take a left straight downhill or take a right and go up a steep hill. If you take a left going downhill, you’ll pay the toll about a mile away. Steep hill back into the neighborhood that is a 1/3 mile long. The good news is once you’re done, it’a pretty much downhill. Go straight and you get to run down this black diamond ski slope. However, you’ll pay for the next mile which grades upward. Either way it’s not a lot of fun. At least the last 1/2 mile is downhill. Got it? I’ve done it 5 times so far. Put the tunes on and jam to the Beatles. I’m the dork sha la la-ing to Baby It’s You. Though I was happy yesterday to jam to the Rolling Stones’ song, Star Fucker. My wife and dog have gone with me a couple of times.
Kettlebell workouts are going as planned. Heavy doubles. No sooner did I write what I was going to do, Mike Mahler put out a similar workout where you have 2 volume days and 2 heavy days. Volume is 8 sets of 5, when you can do it add a rep. Heavy day is the 5/3/1 3 x 3 workout. 2 sets of 3, rep out 3rd set. Using my 88’s for deadlifts, double swings, and then on heavy days rows, as well as one hand swings. Sets of 15. For presses, I’m using 55’s and 70’s. I’ve lost strength in my press. Doing 70 x 3 is my max right now. Last winter, I did 7 reps, now, barely can squeak out 3. I’m going to start greasing the groove with 5 sets of 2 throughout the day.
NFL season is upon us. After reading two powderpuff pieces in Sports Illustrated on Russell Wilson and Colin Kaepernick, i decided to rate the starting QB’s for each team, ranked 1 through 32. Two phrases I can’t stand are “elite quarterback,” and “game manager.” As in, is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?” Or “Alex Smith is a quality game manager.” So this is from my eye test and some simple statistics. No QB rating, none of that crap.
1. Tom Brady This is his 15th season in the league and 14th as a starter. Not counting 2008 when he was injured in the first game, he’s been to 5 Super Bowls and 8 AFC championship games. 8 out 13 full seasons. And other than Randy Moss, Gronk, and Welker, who has had more hot garbage for receivers? He had nothing last year. Go ahead, hate all you want, who would you want to start the Super Bowl, him or Peyton Manning?
2. Peyton Manning Great comeback from his neck surgery, and had a terrific year. Has put up some ungodly statistics. Not the best playoff qb, if this was based on regular season, I’ll take him over the San Mateo kid. But, he’s had some real bad playoff games, and has had much more talent for receivers. Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison are Hall of Fame candidates
3. Aaron Rogers I love this kid. His back end throws to Jordy Nelson are awesome to watch. Right now he’s more like 1C. Can run with the ball as well. He’ll go down in the top 10 of all time.
4. Drew Brees Thank you to the Miami Dolphins for failing him on a physical so I didn’t have to watch him torture the Patriots hot garbage secondary of years past. Spreads the ball around well. Used to love watching him at Purdue
5. Ben Roethlisberger Big, tough and is at his most dangerous on broken plays. You can’t bring him down. He’s going to have issues when he gets older in that he’s taken a lot of hits. Has 2 rings, didn’t play great in one of them, but excellent.
6. Cam Newton Saw him live last year. Big, fast great arm. And Carolina let all his receivers go. It’s going to be a long year.
7. Matt Stafford This guy has top 5 talent, but rumor has it, he’s not as committed. I remember him throwing for 400 yards without any TD’s Has Megatron, Calvin Johnson, that never hurt
8. Andrew Luck And he’s only going to get better! 3rd year in the league, weak division, I expect big things. Not the best looking buck to strut down the pike.
9. Joe Flacco His numbers (except his salary) will not wow you, but the former Blue Hen is a winner with a big arm. Steve Smith will help his cause
10. Philip Rivers Great competitor, hot head, but throws a lot of TD’s He can play on my team anytime.
11. Matt Ryan Has had an excellent career, but couldn’t overcome the Julio Jones injury. Other knock is never trust a Boston College alumnus in crunch time. The last big moment was David Gordon hitting the field goal against Notre Dame in South Bend back in 1993.
12. Russell Wilson Had a nice year last year, and makes the plays when he has to. Good wheels as well.
13. Tony Romo If football was like hockey and only had 3 periods, he’d be a hall of famer, alas, in cruch time, hand the ball off
14. Colin Kaepernick When he finds consistent accuracy, he rocket up this list. Big arm, great wheels. Don’t look at the ink, look at the rest of the package.
15. Nick Foles Came out of nowhere last year in Chip Kelley’s offense and had under 5 picks. If the line can keep him erect, with the running game the Eagles have, it will be another fine year
16. Eli Manning On the back 9 of his career. Had a terrible year last year and looked worse in the preseason. Classic drop back throw it 20 down the field. Has 2 rings. That’s the only reason he’s this high. Threw over 20 picks last year
17. Jay Cutler Great arm, horrible mechanics. Terrible body language. Has top 10 talent. Good looking wife scores him some points. A poor man’s Jeff George
18. Alex Smith A boring quarterback with a boring head coach who plays not to lose. Best thing 49ers did was let him go.
19 Andy Dalton The Red Rifle is 0-3 in the playoffs. Did the Bengals brain trust watch the playoff game last year vs. the Chargers before they signed him to that big contract? Absolutely brutal. He should give half his money to AJ Green.
20. Ryan Tannehill Two years in the league and improving, if only he can survive the Dolphin offensive line overhaul
21. Robert Griffin III A one read quarterback with a bum knee. Too worried about what the haters think vs the coaches. Needs to learn to stay in the pocket and go through his progressions.
22. Josh McCown The Bucs expect big things for Josh. Lots of weapons around him. We’ll see if last year was a fluke.
23. Carson Palmer Carson Palmer was a top 10 QB with the Bengals until he blew out his knee. He was never the same after that and always good for an interception or two a game. He’s played for the three worst owners in the NFL. Mike Brown, a game has passed him by Al Davis, and now Bill Bidwell. Retired until he was traded only to play for Oakland.
24. Matt Cassel Inconsistent, a seat holder for Teddy Bridgewater. Has some weapons.
25 Chad Henne, the perfect seat holder for Blake Bortles. A 4-12 team, do you really care about the soon to be back up QB?
26. Ryan Fitzpatrick A poor man’s Carson Palmer right down to the red beard. Will play great and then kill you with interceptions. Backup city.
27. Jake Locker Can’t stay on the field, hasn’t developed the way the Titans hoped when they drafted him in the 1st round. Classic reach because you need a QB
28. Geno Smith We’ll see in the 2nd year. In his defense he had no one to throw to. Adding Eric Decker helps. Did beat the Patriots last year.
29. Shaun Hill Brings experience after the Rams lost Sam Bradford to a knee injury again.
30. EJ Manuel Rough first year, has some guys to throw to. Passing in Buffalo in November and December doesn’t help the cause. A warm weather guy going to the tundra.
31. Brian Hoyer Forget the Manziel talk until he stops pretending he’s Brett Favre in his Falcon days. Hoyer did well before he blew out his knee. I think offensively it’s going to be a long year in Cleveland
32. Derek Carr Has had a good preseason. Hopefully he doesn’t get shellshocked by the pass rush like his brother.
Thank God for Tom Brady, you can have everyone else after Eli. Let the arguing begin!