We are half way through the NFL season and it has been a roller-coaster ride! Locally the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been a huge disappointment as they have a 2-6 record and are buried in last place in the NFC South Division. Quarterback Jameis Winston has been fair (at best) and I give him a C- minus rating. His antics in last week’s game against New Orleans (when he came off the bench to push a Saints player) were flat out embarrassing. He is supposed to be the team leader and if that is the way he leads we are going down the wrong path. I think head coach Dirk Koetter is on the hot seat and may not last the season … I wonder if Jon Gruden is interested?

Our overall best player was even more of a disgrace as wide receiver Mike Evans blindsided New Orleans cornerback Marshon Lattimore drawing a one game suspension from the league. I would have given him a multi-game suspension as his acts were totally uncalled for and unacceptable. He showed no class and no respect for the game or other players.

I don’t understand how the NFL can give Dallas Cowboy running back Zeke Elliot a 6-game suspension for something he did while he was still in college?? He was never arrested or charged with a crime, yet the league is insisting on his huge suspension. Meanwhile on the playing field with millions of people watching (including young children) a guy can blindside another player. Evans could have caused serious injury to Lattimore. If that happened in a bar or anywhere on the street, Evans would have been arrested for assault & battery. The same can be said for Cincinnati Bengal wide receiver AJ Green who also made an ass of himself fighting during a game.

Ok, ok … back to the rest of the league! Injuries have played a huge part of the 2017 season. Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers, Houston linebacker JJ Watt, New York Giant wide receiver Odell Beckham, Houston QB Deshaun Watson (who was having one of the best rookie seasons in NFL history), Indy QB Andrew Luck and Arizona running back David Johnson are just a few of the superstars who are injured and out for the rest of the season. Along with crippling teams, these injuries have caused fantasy football players to go crazy!

The whole “National Anthem” thing has been blown so far out of proportion it’s taken on a life of its own. I’m damn sick of people disrespecting our country and our flag. I understand black players have something to say and are not happy with many things in our country but where else in the world would they (or any NFL player) have the chance to make millions of dollars playing a game? I do not believe the football field is the place to demonstrate and I 100% disagree with disrespecting our flag. I am not a supporter of “white supremacy” or a “racist” nor do I hate anybody who is black … that is far, far, far from the truth but I am a father whose son served 21 years in the Navy and put his life on the line for our country. One of my best friends is a police officer and I hate to see what is happening across our great country. I hope things change soon so everybody can go back to being happy living in the United States.

Once again … back to football … How bad have the San Francisco 49’ers (0-9) and the Cleveland Browns (0-8) been? Will either team win a game??? The New York Giants have sucked almost as bad (1-7). Other disappointments include the Oakland Raiders (4-5), Denver Broncos (3-5), Arizona Cardinals (4-4) and the Atlanta Falcons (4-4). Surprises have included the Jacksonville Jags (5-3), New Orleans Saints (6-2), the LA Rams (6-2) and the Philadelphia Eagles (8-1)!

We still have half the season left to play and I think the New England Patriots will win the AFC East, Jacksonville Jags will shock then world and win the AFC South, Pittsburgh will take the AFC North and Kansas City will win the AFC West.

In the NFC my picks are Philly winning the East, New Orleans taking the South, Minnesota winning the North and the upstart LA Rams winning the West. I do see the Falcons having a much better second half and I am not counting them out as NFC South champions. I am not impressed with the Seattle Seahawks who could surprise me and still win the NFC West.

My Super Bowl prediction is Pittsburgh or New England in the AFC playing Philadelphia or New Orleans. It’s been a very interesting first half of the season and who knows what will happen between now and February 4, 2018 where Super Bowl 52 will take place in the middle of winter at the brand new U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, MN.