RAIN OR SHINE

NFL week 2 football weather report

If he plays, Marcus Mariota could be dealing with winds. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

I apologize for the late post here but uncertainties with the path of Hurricane Florence after landfall necessitated that I wait so I could give the most accurate information.  Originally, I thought Florence wouldn’t really impact any games on Sunday but that has changed a bit now. While nothing looks extreme there are some things worth noting. So lets get to it.

 Texans @ Titans (Sunday 12:00 PM) – I had this game up in the air as Nashville will be on the outer fringes of Florence on Sunday. Right now it looks like any rain should hold off until after the game but wind may be an issue. Currently the forecast is for Northeast winds at 15 MPH with gusts over 20 MPH.  The orientation of the stadium would have the wind blowing diagonally across the field. With Florence continuing to move inland I wouldn’t rule out some stronger wind gusts during the game. It shouldn’t have a tremendous affect on the quarterbacks save for some very deep throws, but kickers could be impacted. 

QB: ↓

RB: ↔

WR/TE: ↔

DEF: ↔

K: ↓↓

 Colts @ Redskins (Sunday 12:00 PM) – By Sunday Washington will be on the outer northern fringes of Florence. It appears that there could be some showers passing through during the game but it shouldn’t be a deluge.  Winds also look to stay under 10 mph which should be manageable for kickers. Overall not much impact on this game, but I wanted to mention it as some people were concerned about this game. I’ll spare the page length and just tell you I would give neutral impacts to all position groups.

Eagles @ Buccaneers (Sunday 12:00 PM) – The story here will be heat with a potential side of some lightning.  This will be a typical Florida summer afternoon – hot and suffocatingly humid. The heat index will be hovering around 103 degrees during the game.  Conditions like this negatively affect the defense more than any other position group.  Later in the game though the possibility exists for some thunderstorms to pop up. The prospect of rain from these storms isn’t terribly concerning but there may be some issues with lightning as we saw last week in the Titans-Dolphins game.  From a fantasy standpoint the effects of a delay are minimal, but from a gambling perspective it could be a bit more significant as a delay has the potential to shift momentum. Winds throughout the game will be out of the southwest at about 9 MPH which shouldn’t be an issue for kickers.

                QB:         ↔

                RB:         ↔

                WR/TE: ↔

                DEF:       ↓

                K:            ↔

Patriots @ Jaguars (Sunday 3:25 PM) – Some showers and thunderstorms may be possible wrapping around the southern edge of Florence. While any rain shouldn’t be too extreme, given that this is Florida the potential for lightning exists in any storms that do come through.  So don’t be surprised if this game goes into a delay at some point. Again, maybe a bigger deal for gambling than fantasy. Aside from the possibility of a few thunderstorms the main issue here, as in Tampa, will be the heat and humidity as the heat index will be around 103 degrees. Overall I would give a slight bump down to defenses with this heat, but the Jags are more acclimated to these conditions than the Patriots. I really think the heat will have more of an effect on the Patriots, especially given the ground and pound nature of Jacksonville’s offense. Winds will be around 10 MPH which shouldn’t be an issue for kickers.

QB: ↔

RB: ↔

WR/TE: ↔

DEF: ↓ (NE DEF:↓↓)

K: ↔

 

 

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The media has mixed feelings about the James Harden trade. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

James Harden was 100-percent exactly right earlier this week when he said the Houston Rockets were "just not good enough."

How could they be? Not when their moody superstar scorer, who makes about half a million dollars per game, shows up chubby, looking like a kielbasa about to explode in the microwave. Hey, some people eat when they're unhappy, it's a defense mechanism. In Harden's case, the only defense he's exhibited this season. At least he had a good excuse for missing pre-season training camp and alienating his teammates - he was busy partying with Cinnamon and Cherish in Atlanta and Vegas without a mask. Worst of all, he went into the tank his last four games in a Rockets uniform, standing around, arms folded, scoring fewer than 20 points each time, all Rockets losses. Fans in the front row were asking him to move, he was blocking their view of players who cared about winning. James Harden sabotaged his own team, a team that offered him $50 million a year to stay. Something that crazy could only happen in professional sports these days.

There's a saying that drives the American labor movement: "a fair day's wage for a fair day's work." It's the motto of the American Federation of Labor. The National Basketball Players Association is not a member. Harden's sulking on the court, cheating the Rockets and their fans, was unforgivable.

Harden, sitting out games while somehow being on the court, forced the Rockets to trade him - and quick - to Brooklyn. The trade, when you ignore the fine print and unindicted co-conspirators Cleveland and Indiana, sent Harden to Brooklyn in exchange for Caris LeVert (immediately flipped for Victor Oladipo), Jarrett Allen, three first-round draft picks and four swapped first-rounders. It's true, when you trade a superstar, you never get back equal value. The other team wins.

If it makes Rockets fans feel any better, the media in New York already has problems with their new problem child. I should say newest problem child. Kyrie Irving plays for the Nets.

"They (the Nets) gave up everybody! There's nothing left now. I just want to cry, It's awful," weeped WFAN Radio talk host Evan Roberts. For those who don't subscribe to weekly Arbitron ratings reports, WFAN is the most powerful, top-rated sports talk station in the Apple.

"You're leading down the road of doom. Harden and Durant could be gone in a year and a half. I'm not convinced this gives them a better chance to win a title. I'm living a nightmare again. They better freaking win."

Circle March 3 on your Rockets schedule. That's when the Brooklyn Nets, with their Big 3 of Kevin Durant, James Harden and possibly Kyrie Irving visit Toyota Center. I hear talk radio salivating over the record jeers that will cascade over Harden's name, although I'm not buying it. Fans don't think like the media does. I'm thinking that Rockets fans will welcome Harden back - one night only - with cheers.

Toyota Center public address announcer Matt Thomas: "Usually when former Rockets come to town for the first time since leaving, I give them a positive introduction. It's up to the fans how to react."

James Harden spent eight seasons with the Rockets. He is a spectacular player who watched other NBA players engineer trades so they could compete for a title. Harden didn't think the Rockets were good enough, and he's right. So he wanted out. We've all been there, a job we didn't like for a company we didn't like, for a boss we didn't respect. Harden wanting to be traded is understandable. How he went about it was deplorable. He hurt his co-workers.

Houston will make Harden pay for his disrespectful departure. He has an upscale restaurant set to open here. The name of the steakhouse will be "13." Harden's business partners may want to change that number ... before the restaurant's telephone number is disconnected. There are plenty of other restaurants in Houston. Rich people who can afford steakhouse prices hold grudges.

Rockets fans searching for a silver lining say, "We got two decent players and a whole bunch of precious first-round picks" for a malcontent who would rather be anywhere (except maybe Sacramento) than Houston." Yes, a bunch of first-round picks does bode well for the future. Anywhere, except maybe Houston.

Houston's draft war room isn't the most successful operation in the NBA. Over the past decade prior to 2000, under the direction of general manager Daryl Morey, the Rockets made 16 draft picks. Not one of them is still in a Rockets uniform, many of them have sought employment outside of America, some outside of basketball. Among their first-round whiffs: Nikola Mirotic, Terrence Jones, Sam Dekker - all out of the league. Best of all, Royce White, who played three whole games in his NBA career and finished with a scoring average of 0.00 points per game.

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