.

5. Aaron Rodgers
Grudge Factor: 2
Obviously, Rodgers has no direct involvement in any of the multiple assaults on the Patriots over the last couple of seasons. But he makes the list as a sort of unindicted co-conspirator of those who did. New England will not and should not ever forget that in the weeks prior to the Deflategate conspiracy being put into motion, the Patriots played at Green Bay. And in the middle of that game, Jim Nantz and Phil Simms had a big chucklefest between themselves about how Aaron Rodgers told them he likes his footballs inflated above the legal limit. How he’ll have them over-pumped and hope the officials don’t notice. It did not register even the slightest with America or Pats fans. Just another disposable anecdote in a season filled with them, used once and then thrown away.

Until Tom Brady got accused of preferring his footballs underinflated and it became a national scandal. Then it became obvious that Brady is considered Rodgers evil twin by the rest of the country. The Goofus to his Gallant. Brady’s supposed (and denied) tampering with the balls is an outrage; Rodgers’ admitted tampering is a funny story.

Funny thing about that, though. Since the crackdown on the care of footballs began, Rodgers has put together the worst stretch of quarterbacking of his career. In 2014, he won the league MVP, led the league with an interception percentage of only 1.0 and had a passer rating of 112.2 Last season his passer rating fell off a cliff to 92.7 and this year it’s down to 88.4. And his interception percentage has more than doubled to 2.2. Meanwhile, using the same, allegedly carefully calibrated balls as Mr. Discount Double Check, Brady has just put together arguably the best back-to-back games in the history of the quarterback position.

So who’s the one who needs to cheat to win?
Misery Index: 4

4. New York Jets
Grudge Factor: 4
Like Rodgers, the Jets were a non-combatant in the Deflategate war, but they no doubt gave care and comfort to the enemy. They’re on this for committing the most blatant act of tampering in memory. And they absolutely, positively skated.

The Jets tampered with Darrelle Revis. That is a fact not in dispute. They were found guilty and apologized. And for that, they were fined $100,000. Basically pocket change to their owner, the heir to a baby powder fortune. A league that typically settles these tampering disputes by giving the team that was done dirty a draft pick from the perpetrator, did nothing to help the Patriots after they lost the consensus best defensive back of his era.

So how are the Jets doing? They are 1-5. Monday night they lost to Arizona 28-3, produced 11 first downs total and replaced their quarterback. And Revis, to whom they’re on the hook for $39 million guaranteed, has been in and out of the lineup. And the even worse news is that they get the honor of being the only team in the regular season to face Tom Brady twice.
Misery Index: 5

3. ESPN
Grudge Factor: 8
I don’t have to take too big a wind up describing the case against the World Wide Leader. I’ll just pitch from the stretch, shorten my delivery and say NFL’s Ministry of Truth has been point of the spear for the anti-Patriots movement.

And all that trading their integrity to make ESPN’s leash-holders in the NFL office happy has given them plummeting ratings thanks in part to epic programming like the Jets at Arizona. In the last five years, they’ve lost 11.3 million subscribers, including 4.1 million in the last year alone. That translates to $350 million in lost revenue. So I guess they can’t afford to change Chris Mortensen’s false report, which is still uncorrected on their website. Or hire someone to go find Kelly Naqi.
Misery Index: 10

2. Baltimore Ravens
Grudge Factor: 9
The Ravens were the J. Robert Oppenheimer of the Deflategate nuke. John Harbaugh was mortally offended that the Patriots outschemed him in the January, 2015 playoff game. So team staff contacted the Colts and together they plotted revenge. The business of an Indy linebacker intercepting a Brady pass and thinking the ball felt funny is a fiction. That much was confirmed by the Colts GM Ryan Grigson who admitted the Ravens alerted his office to “issues” with the footballs.

Well, since that playoff game, the Ravens have gone 8-14. They are currently in a three-game losing streak in what was supposed to be the soft part of their schedule. And Harbaugh is fielding questions about the analytics that say his team has a 19% chance of making the playoffs. In mid-October.
Misery Index: 100

1. Indianapolis Colts
Grudge Factor: 10

Since the infamous AFC title game blowout that started it all, the Colts are a sub-.500 team. The club’s pickled-brained owner followed up an 8-8 season by bringing his entire staff back. They are now 2-4 an in last place of the worst division in football. Grigson has blamed his team’s failures on the size of Andrew Luck’s contract, as if he didn’t negotiate it, sign it and write the bonus checks. And Luck, the franchise player they tanked an entire season in order to draft, whom they’re paying such an onerous amount of money to, is currently 11th in the league in passer rating, just ahead of Case Keenum and Tyrod Taylor.

It would take a heart of stone not to laugh.
Misery Index: One billion.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Thornton
The guys discussed Robert Kraft's sit down with Hannah Storm and Vontaze Burfict's dirty hits Sunday against the Patriots.
The guys discuss Robert Klemko's story that was ripped apart by Alexis Dent.
Gerry, Kirk and Pete discuss Robert Kraft's sit down with ESPN and headlines with Kirk.
Pete, Gerry and Kirk reacted to Gary Tanguay's latest nonsensical rant about Tom Brady.

Good morning, here is your Tuesday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

Good morning, here is your Tuesday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB playoffs:
Cleveland at Toronto, 4:08 p.m. (TBS)
MLB playoffs:
Chicago Cubs at Los Angeles, 8:08 p.m. (FS1)
NBA preseason:
New Orleans at Atlanta, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
NBA preseason:
LA Clippers at Sacramento, 10 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL:
Philadelphia at Chicago, 8:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Champions League, Real Madrid vs. Legia Warsaw, 2:30 p.m. (FSN)
Soccer: Champions League, Leicester City vs. Copenhagen, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: Champions League, Bayer 04 Leverkusen vs. Tottenham, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: Champions League, Sporting CP vs. Borussia Dortmund, 2:30 p.m. (FS2)

MONDAY’S RESULTS:
NHL:
Bruins 4, Jets 1
NHL: Red Wings 5, Senators 1
NHL: Rangers 7, Sharks 4
NHL: Avalanche 4, Penguins 3
NFL: Cardinals 28, Jets 3
MLB: Indians 4, Blue Jays 2

AROUND THE WEB: 

— A Toronto judge has blocked an attempt to ban the Cleveland Indians’ Chief Wahoo logo from being worn in Canada during the ALCS. 

After indigenous people advocate Douglas Cardinal filed suit with the Supreme Court of Justice in Toronto to ban the use of the logo in Toronto arguing it is offensive, a judge ruled the team can continue using the logo in the Canadian city.

Cardinal is an architect who designed New York’s National Museum of the American Indian and is a member of the Blackfoot tribe.

“Using a racially discriminatory caricature is a violation of the Ontario human rights code,” Cardinal’s lawyer, Monique Jilesen, told the Ontario Superior Court.

Jilesen argued the Indians could play the game in their spring training uniforms, which do not have the Chief Wahoo logo on them.

But the judge denied the request.

“Given the demands for completing the League Championship Series in a timely manner, MLB will defend Cleveland’s right to use their name that has been in existence for more than 100 years,” MLB responded in a statement.

“We would welcome a thoughtful and inclusive dialogue to address these concerns outside the context of litigation,” the statement also said.

The Indians wore the Chief Wahoo logo in Monday night’s Game 3 and beat the Blue Jays, 4-2.

— It seems Jim Harbaugh will do almost anything for a steak sandwich.

The University of Michigan football coach recently turned up as a member of the chain gang at a high school in Albany, California, for what many assumed was a chance for him to scout El Cerrito High School offensive tackle Aaron Banks.

When asked why he was there, Harbaugh gave a surprising reason.

“They needed a guy. I was promised a tri-tip steak sandwich at halftime, that was all I needed to hear,” he said.

This isn’t the first time Harbaugh has been inspired by meat.

When a Michigan Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse promised customers a special discount equal to Harbaugh’s Wolverines’ winning-point differential, Michigan demolished Rutgers 78-0 on Oct. 8.

Harbaugh even went to the restaurant himself to take advantage of his accomplishment.

— Frank Kaminsky hates the Cubs.

The Hornets center and devoted White Sox fan returned to his hometown of Chicago with the Hornets for a preseason game and showed his distain for the Cubs by wearing a Steve Bartman jersey around town.

He showed up for the game against the Bulls on Monday wearing the jersey and also wore it to Wrigleyville on Sunday. The Cubs lost on Sunday, so apparently this is working for Kaminsky.

 

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Of course, we would not stand in Torey’s way, as we discussed last week. In my opinion, he’s ready to be a major league manager.” — Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski, on bench coach Torey Lovullo possibly taking a managerial position with another team

THIS DAY IN SPORTS HISTORY: The Red Sox, facing elimination in Game 5 of the 2007 ALCS, began their comeback against the Indians with a 7-1 victory as Josh Beckett pitched eight innings and recorded 11 strikeouts.

Blog Author: 
Lucy Burdge
K&C had a good interview this morning with Tom Brady so we listened to that. Jackie MacMullan had some insight on the Celtics and a possible trade to land Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge.
The Jets were demolished on MNF. The beating got us wondering, outside of New England, where are the good AFC teams? Trevor Bauer's gross and bloody finger led us to recall some of the grossest sports injuries in recent memory. And people care that Tim Tebow is in the Arizona Fall League. We're not quite sure why.
Chris and Chris are looking ahead to the Patriots-Steelers matchup on Sunday and talk abut what the game plan could be for the defense with no Ben Roethlisberger for the Steelers.