It was December of 2009.
My best friend Matt and I were in the middle of one our usual battles of racquetball.
Racquetball is a fun game and great form of exercise. Matt and I also used it to talk about whatever was going on in life while running all around the court.
As it was December my iPhone was full of Christmas music. Matt and I had a rule that no Christmas music was allowed before Thanksgiving. Once Black Friday hit you could hear those sleigh bells jingling and ring-ting tingling all around.
I'd recently discovered a new Christmas song that was on permanent repeat. It was actually sung by the cast of Glee (which at the time was a really popular show) and I couldn't get enough of it. As Matt was my best friend I felt obligated to share the song with him so he could experience the same level of Christmas joy.
"Dude... (whack!) you have to check out this new Christmas song. It's from Glee and I can't get it out of my head." -RJ
"Oh yea? What's it (shoes squeaking) called?" -Matt
"I don't exactly know. It goes something like - is it my serve or yours? - anyway it goes, 'Last Christmas... I gave you my heart. But the very next day you gave it away.' But it's really poppy. I've listened to it something like 200 times!" - RJ
"RJ, that song is by Wham!." - Matt
I don't like to be wrong. I never have. Who does?
Those who know me best would acknowledge that, sometimes, I have a tendency to get argumentative and debate things. I didn't know for sure where this song had come from, but I wasn't going to be proven wrong without a fight.
"No way! Glee wrote it!" I did a pretty good job of sounding like this was true even though I actually had no idea.
"Wham! wrote it in the 80s! Have you seriously never heard that song before?" Matt had me cornered.
"I don't believe you." I said. Every good captain goes down with his ship.
Matt paused the game (I believe I was winning so at least I had that going for me) to go get his phone. As he started googling I knew I was beat. I just had to wait it out and be proven wrong.
Wham!'s official music video for 'Last Christmas'. More Wham hits here: http://smarturl.it/Wham_Spotify?IQid=WhamBB 'Listen without Prejudice/MTV Unplugged' - OUT NOW. Listen on Spotify here http://smarturl.it/GMFreedomSpot and get the album here http://smarturl.it/LWPGM Get the Fantasy single here http://smarturl.it/GMFantasy Music updates http://www.listen-georgemichael.com Official website http://www.georgemichael.com Facebook https://www.facebook.com/georgemichael/ Twitter https://twitter.com/GeorgeMOfficial Instagram https://www.instagram.com/georgemofficial/ Subscribe to George Michael on YouTube: http://smarturl.it/GeorgeMsubscribe --------- Lyrics: Last Christmas I gave you my heart But the very next day you gave it away.
Matt showed me this video on his phone. I was wrong. At least I won the racquetball game, right?
While I maintain that the Glee version of Wham!'s "Last Christmas" is better and a fantastic holiday tune, Wham! was the original artist. I was wrong and I can admit that.
These are Bold Predictions - they're supposed to be unlikely.
Tomorrow the Dallas Cowboys will play the Washington Redskins on Monday Night Football. Anything can happen, and that includes these Bold Predictions.
If I'm wrong about these, like I was about the origin of "Last Christmas", I'll gladly admit it. If you've read my Bold Predictions before then you know that I'm not one to punt, and today is no exception. Right, wrong, or whatever... we're getting bold.
This year has not saved us from tears as far as the Dallas Cowboys are concerned, but tomorrow is going to be something special. Let's go.
Dan Bailey Will Convert Five Total Field Goals/Extra Points
I started off with this one because Matt actually looks like Dan Bailey! If you see him in public don't let him fool you.
In eight career games Dan Bailey has never missed a field goal or extra point against the Washington Redskins. Check it out:
|Extra Points||Field Goals||Field Goal Yardage||Points|
Dan the Man averages 2.5 extra points and 2.25 field goals against the Redskins. He averages 3 extra points and 1.75 field goals when those games are played in Washington. Both of those marks combine for just under five total kicks when he plays this team.
Dan better warm up that golden foot of his because it's going to be used to put points on the board for the Dallas Cowboys at least five times on Monday Night.
There Will Be At Least 10 Jon/Jay Gruden References
The mothership of ESPN isn't exactly known for its ability to be creative. They take successful records and play them over and over again.
"Hey Jon! You know the Washington coach pretty well, don't ya?" I can hear Mike Tirico now.
It's no secret that Jon Gruden and Jay Gruden are brothers. The Monday Night Football broadcast thinks that it is though, and they're going to remind you all throughout the night.
This'll probably happen more than 10 times, but that's as high as I'm willing to count. If your name is Gruden then this is the game for you!
Dez Bryant Will Catch 3 Touchdowns
We really haven't seen Dez Bryant be Dez Bryant this season. The lone moment where he looked like the superstar we all know and love was when he jumped out of the stadium to haul in a touchdown a few weeks ago against the Eagles.
The last complete game that we saw #88 put together was arguably the last time that the Cowboys visited the Redskins.
Dez's last trip to Washington resulted in 4 catches for 99 yards and 2 touchdowns. It was a great day and considering that Dez is feeling the best he has in a long time... I say we're in store for a similar performance.
Matt Cassel knows that when he's in trouble the best option is always Dez Bryant. That's how the play against Philly happened - Matt closed his eyes and tossed it up to Dez. He's going to do it a lot in Washington.
Robert Turbin Will Have Over 75 Total Yards
The last time that the Dallas Cowboys looked like a competent football team was down in Miami two weeks ago. Sure Tony Romo was quarterbacking the team, but a big reason why was a new running back named Robert Turbin.
Fun fact time... did you know that Turbin was in on all of the scoring drives for the Cowboys against the Dolphins? Now you do!
Turbin Time fits well in our offense and the team had to have realized that over the long break since the Carolina game.
I do think that Darren McFadden will get his own yardage, but between the run game and utilization in the passing game... Turbin Time is going over 75 total yards.
The Dallas Cowboys Will Win The Game
This isn't that fancy of a bold prediction because we're done with being fancy and we need to focus on what's most important in our season.
WIN. THE. GAME.
The Dallas Cowboys have been under a lot of scrutiny this season. Everyone in that locker room has had to hear how they are a joke without Tony Romo at quarterback, and you know what? That's been true up until now.
This team had a high level of fight to them last year that is still there. Sometimes it takes the highest level of adversity to bring it out of people... we are at that point.
Remember that this team hasn't played a game since Thanksgiving. They've had a week and a half of rest and preparation. That's a long time to sit on the devastation that we all felt. They're about to go off.
Expect this team to unleash on Monday Night Football. They know what's at stake and how fortunate they are to still have a shot at this whole thing. Now it's time to go to work.
Cowboys Defense is Ready to Win Now, Time for Offense to Prove the Same
The Dallas Cowboys lead the NFC East at 1-1, and have a favorable schedule ahead of them. With such an inexperienced roster, early season growing pains were expected, and likely should be still as the team comes off their first win to play in Seattle on Sunday.
Through a season opening clunker in Carolina and hard-earned divisional win against the Giants, the Cowboys have exceeded already high expectations on defense.
With the currently 0-2 Seahawks, Lions, and Texans awaiting Dallas, the time is now for Scott Linehan's offense to hit their stride. It will take more than a five week assessment to determine if the Cowboys are truly playoff contenders for 2018, but it could take even less than that for Cowboys Nation to realize this team is fighting an uphill battle at QB and WR.
Following Dak Prescott's 64-yard touchdown pass to Tavon Austin against the Giants, the Cowboys punted on four of their remaining seven drives. The Cowboys did a better job mixing up their early down play calling to remain ahead of the chains for most of the night, but even still their execution was lacking. Finishing three of ten on third downs, the Cowboys didn't sustain the type of originality on offense that earned them an early cushion.
Thankfully, the Cowboys turning back the clock to 2016 on a clinching touchdown drive of 14 plays would be all the defense needed. Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott would both convert a pair of first downs on the ground. The Cowboys took a 20-3 lead, and more importantly the game clock down to 5:45 with an eight minute and 23 second march.
As such, the Cowboys offense is an enigma. With the return of Brice Butler, the team is currently carrying seven wide receivers and four tight ends.
On defense, the Cowboys are expecting reinforcements in Xavier Woods, Randy Gregory, and David Irving to further bolster this aggressive, blitzing unit in the coming weeks. For the offense, Dallas must make the most out of the unknown depth they have, without any drastic change in style around the corner.
The Cowboys record under Prescott proves they're at their best when Dak is efficient. The ceiling for a new-look Cowboys offense built for Dak is not as high for this reason. Through just two weeks, it's clear that the Cowboys offense will be as good as the sum of its parts - instead of relying on any individual talents.
Cowboys' record when Dak Prescott ... Doesn't throw an interception: 20-4 Records at least a 100.0 passer rating: 15-1 Commits no turnovers: 18-1
After a strong preseason from rookie Wide Receiver Michael Gallup, the third-round pick has played less than half his team's offensive snaps through two games. Cole Beasley has seemed to regain his connection with Prescott, snagging a team high nine catches so far. Terrance Williams has been a non-factor, and the same is surprisingly said about FA acquisition Allen Hurns.
Regardless of what the Cowboys do over the coming weeks, a few narratives and lingering questions about the team feel evident. With the defense set to tee off against the Seahawks sub par OL this week, Rod Marinelli's unit will still likely not receive the credit it deserves heading into week four.
With the task at hand being maintaining their standing atop the division, the Cowboys must also be out to prove they can sustain success without a consistent passing game.
All of this to effectively say, the Cowboys are going to Seattle expecting to control the game on defense. To finish off Russell Wilson in his home opener (already at 0-2), it will take a sharper performance for a full four quarters on offense too.
A win at the Seahawks might not mean as much as it has in past seasons, but in improving the Cowboys record to 2-1 on the way back to AT&T Stadium, it could be all the confidence they need to understand the NFC East is theirs for the taking while continuing to truly find their identity.
Week 6 Own by nfl
Cowboys Defense So Far So Good as Seahawks Up Next
Dallas may only be 1-1 on the season, but the Cowboys are officially tied for first-place in the NFC East, and fresh off a workmanlike victory over divisional rivals, the New York Giants. It was a game they should have won, and did win, but the takeaways so early in the season are that, although the offense has not clicked on all cylinders, the defense is getting high praise.
The Cowboys sacked New York’s Eli Manning six times and limited the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 draft, Saquon Barkley, to a mere 28 yards rushing. It was also a night in which Dak Prescott not only out-gained Barkley by 17 yards on the ground, but torched the Giants’ secondary on a 64-yard touchdown strike to Tavon Austin which proved New York’s Safety Landon Collins wrong when leading up to this game he remarked that the key to a Giants’ victory would be getting Prescott to throw. When Prescott was made aware of the comment in a midweek interview he replied, "…challenge accepted," and the third-year veteran made good on his word leading to the 20-13 victory.
However, Prescott ended the night with just 160 yards passing yet the ankle injury he sustained in Week 1 showed no signs of rearing its head as Prescott moved seamlessly in the pocket and ran the ball well.
As we move ahead to the Cowboys meeting in Seattle, we take a quick check over to one of the most reputable online sportsbooks in the industry - Intertops according to the reviews - where we can monitor the line on this pivotal NFC clash as the week progresses.
Seattle boasts a talented quarterback of their own in Russell Wilson but one who will find the sledding tough if the Dallas defense continues to shut down All-World wide outs like Odell Beckham Jr. and contain future rushing stars like Saquon Barkley. Outside of Wilson, Seattle is not loaded offensively, with their biggest target, Doug Baldwin, ailing with a knee injury and a backfield which consists of two young rushers in second-year man Chris Carson and a first-round rookie in Rashaad Penny who dealt with nagging injuries throughout the preseason and looked unsettled in Seattle’s 27-24 loss to the Broncos.
The Cowboys defense has already proven its worth in Carolina with Cam Newton under center and again last week against New York. The unit is surrendering an average of 14 ½ points per game and is incorporating more blitz packages than we’ve come to expect.
The difference this year is that the players they have on defense are capable of getting to the quarterback quick enough so that the coverage linebackers and secondary aren’t alone on an island for too long. The one concern is the status of Linebacker Sean Lee, who checked out of the game in the fourth quarter Sunday night and brought to mind his hamstring issues of a year ago, but apparently it was in fact cramping, and not straining, of the hammy which allowed Lee to return.
The bottom line in terms of the Cowboys' upcoming matchup on Sunday afternoon is that they will get the Seahawks coming off a short week, as Seattle played on Monday night and should be relatively healthy for the contest.
Dak Prescott may not have the formidable offensive line that he has had in the past, nor a top-tier arsenal of receivers, but he does have the elusive Ezekiel Elliott in the backfield and is capable of extricating himself from pressure situations when no target is available.
If the Dallas defense continues to play at the current level, it will not only be limiting the opposition on the scoreboard but putting its offense in good field position throughout. So check out Intertops, one of the most trusted and reputable online sportsbooks, to see where this line goes because a Dallas win and an ATS cover are just days away.
Taco Tuesday: Cowboys DE Taco Charlton Starting to Dominate?
There has been quite a bit of talk about what a bad decision it was for the Dallas Cowboys to draft Taco Charlton with their first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. Nearly everybody wanted someone different, not a player that needed time to develop.
Well, fast forward a year later and it looks as if the Cowboys made the right decision.
Don't look now, but Defensive End Taco Charlton is starting to live up to that first-round pedigree. In the first two weeks of the 2018 season, Charlton has already looked like a much improved player from what we saw a season ago. Imagine that, a little bit of time to develop and he's turning into a solid player.
I know I may be getting a little bit ahead of myself, especially suggesting that he is starting to dominate, but I can't help myself. I'm that excited about how much he has improved in one offseason. I may be alone here, but I have high hopes he could turn into something special.
In 2017, Taco Charlton failed to start a single game for the Dallas Cowboys as a rookie. That's not really what you want from your first-round draft pick. To makes matters worse, in 16 games he only registered 25 total tackles, four QB sacks, two passes defensed, and one forced fumble. As you can imagine, it didn't sit well with most Cowboys fans.
Luckily, it looks as if Charlton's offseason in the Dallas Cowboys strength and conditioning program has paid off. Already in 2018 he has accumulated six total tackles, one QB sack, one pass defensed, and recovered a fumble. If he keeps this pace up, we could be looking at #97 reaching double-digit sacks this year.
Now, I wouldn't call what Taco Charlton has accomplished so far this season dominating, but he is proving to be a starting quality DE along the Cowboys defensive line. It's a unit that has looked really good in the first two weeks of the season and is expected to be even better once Randy Gregory and David Irving are able to return to the field.
In the meantime, the Dallas Cowboys are happy to get plays like this from Taco Charlton.
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
This is a play Charlton is expected to make. He was left unblocked, but we've seen players left unblocked before not make the play. So, it may not be as impressive as some QB sacks. But, I'll take the routine tackle any day over someone trying to make a splash play and failing.
If you're looking for an impressive play from Taco Charlton, take a look at what he was able to do against Odell Beckham Jr. in the passing game.
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
In case you're wondering, that's Taco Charlton in OBJ's hip pocket 15 yards down the field in pass coverage. It looks as if that's where Eli Manning was wanting to go with the ball, but tight coverage by the Cowboys, and Charlton, across the board ended up resulting in a QB sack.
If you don't find that impressive, I don't know what will. A 275 pound DE covering arguably the best and highest paid wide receiver down the field is almost unheard of. I would count that as impressive.
What do you think of Taco Charlton's play so far in 2018?
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