On Super Bowls, And America’s Need For Visionary Thinking

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One problem with the world today is the lack of visionary thinkers. Selfless people who put public welfare before private gain, these fearless few are willing to risk it all on a simple hunch that chocolate chips might go well in a cookie. Fortunately, I am such a visionary thinker. Heads of state, titans of industry, former NBA journeyman Felton Spencer – they all agree. I’m that good.

Unfortunately, I can’t share the details of the top ten secret projects on which I’m engaged. Confidentiality aside, they’re too mind-tripping for public consumption. The earth could literally spin off its axis if my research fell into the wrong hands. Also, I don’t want to relive 1984, when Council on Foreign Relations leadership turned on me. My crime? Freeing Bryan Adams from the underground cell where they were keeping him. A melodious angel, he was meant for more than the bar mitzvah parties and debutante balls of CFR sons and daughters. Plus like all Canadian commodities the American public had a God-given right to him. A modern day Prometheus, I was punished by the Beltway gods for my crime. Cuts Like a Knife, indeed.

A little further down the list are projects I probably could share with you, but choose not to out of concern for your sanity. My life certainly was simpler before I knew what that “Push Here For Crosswalk” button really does, or that Tilda Swinton played Olaf in Frozen. I don’t mean she supplied the voice, I mean that lumpy snowman actually was Tilda Swinton. You think it was Josh Gad and computer graphics? Don’t be naïve.

Fortunately, Projects 38 and 39 are innocuous enough to publish here without jeopardizing anyone’s safety. I doubt CFR brass will gas up the Skylarks and put tails on me over these disclosures. They have bigger fish to fry, what with the plummeting price of oil, economic slowdown in China and the Oscars kerfuffle. Plus these ones are timely since they both involve professional football. No, here I’ll go in a different direction. I’m not saying I drew up that route-jumping scheme that won Super Bowl XLIX for the Patriots and I’m not saying I didn’t. I’m just saying my genius-for-hire days are over. Far as I’m concerned, these schemes are free for any enterprising NFL coach or player to adopt in Super Bowl XL.

Project 38 – The “Blow-Dart” Onside Punt. Here it is, short and sweet. Fourth and long, first quarter, a classic punting situation. No special formation is needed. Punter receives the snap, only instead of his two step approach, he side-steps, eschews the traditional trajectory and kicks the football on a rope. Think Wayne Rooney connecting on a side-volley from twenty-five yards out at Old Trafford. If that is too hard for a red-blooded NFL fan to visualize, imagine John Wayne playing Wayne Rooney connecting on a side-volley from twenty-five yards out at Old Trafford. Worst case, a net twenty-five yard shift in field position instead of the more typical forty-plus yards. Best case, a fumble recovery on a short field. Why? Because once it drills the receiving team’s lineman squarely in the back, that my friend is a live football.

Project 39 – The “Sedated Octopus” Tackle. I admit this one requires an uncommonly open mind, but hear me out. Your typical cornerback hasn’t gotten much bigger in the past quarter century. The fullback, however, has, and faster too. When he is past the linebackers and running for daylight in the secondary, a cornerback has two options. He can tackle as Coach Tightshorts taught him back in high school, or he can listen to me.

It’s simple physics, brother. You can’t even slow the fullback down anymore if you chip him. You’ll only make him angry, and in the process ring your bell so badly that you’ll come off the field swearing you’re Ethel Merman. So here’s what I recommend: open yourself up and just go completely limp. Think sedated octopus, arresting gear on an aircraft carrier, or your Uncle Chet’s gin-soaked embrace – any of these works. Just get all up in his business and slow him down until the cavalry arrives. If you’ve done it right, you’ll be piggy-backing, only riding him in front, which I guess is piggy-fronting. Remember, I said the tackle would be effective. I didn’t say it would be dignified.

No need to thank me, Coaches Rivera and Kubiak. My joy will come in seeing these tactics employed on Super Bowl Sunday. But Coach Kubiak, know that it won’t be enough. I’m not saying 2016 is the Year of the Cat, I’m just saying I hear Al Stewart will be in Santa Clara on Sunday, and the National Anthem isn’t going to sing itself. Go Panthers!