Classic Tarvaris Jackson Pose

NEW YORK, NY –It’s getting into late August which means that the glorious NFL tradition known as preseason is in full swing. This four week schedule of contests used to be known as “Exhibition games,” but even that term seems wholly inappropriate now. In order to host an exhibition don’t you actually have something, you know, to exhibit? While those greedy monkeys known as the NFL owners are collecting full regular-season price for these tickets, fans are left scracthing their heads as to exactly what they are watching. It’s the biggest flim-flam since the carnival sideshow. In fact, that’s the perfect way to look at it.

THE FAT MAN. Any offensive lineman who shows up to camp wayyyyy out of shape. These guys are the genuine article and you actually get to see quite a bit of them (literally) during preseason because their coaches will do anything to melt some of that flab away.  In some sad cases the Fat Man becomes the Fat F**k and has to be released for fear of eating everything in camp that’s not nailed down. See recently released Minnesota Viking Bryant McKinnie, who once treated a hooker’s cooch like it was the buffet at Golden Corral.

In the 7th Round the Arizona Cardinals select...

LOBSTER BOY. This is the third-string quarterback who always cracks under pressure. He really has no business being in the NFL but you get heaping helpings of him in August. Every once in a while the Lobster Boy slips through the nets  and becomes a starter.  Speaking of which, good luck in Seattle this year Tarvaris Jackson!

THE MIDGET. Any free agent kicker who is up against a longtime incumbent. The only reason these guys are brought in to compete against the likes of Janikowski, Longwell, Vinatieri, etc. is so heat-crazed, sex-deprived veterans have someone to tape to the goalposts after practice.

THE HUMAN SKELETON. Perhaps the most prevalent of preseason personas, the Human Skeleton can be found on just about every roster in August. He’s a rangy wide receiver, usually sporting a  number such as 1 or 18, who weighs around165 and has an odd name like Mogadishu Morales. This guy is never gonna make the team but he sure is a helluva lot of fun to watch until he gets absolutely destroyed by THE HUMAN CANNONBALL (aka, a defensive back looking to make a name for himself).

Human Shield Brian Hoyer

THE TATTOOED LADY. This is the guy who reports to camp inked up like a comic book, talking a lot of s**t, and then can’t so much as make a single tackle on special teams during an exhibition game. He will soon be taking his considerable talents to an International House of Pancakes near you.

THE BARKER. What sideshow would be complete without the con artist out front getting all of the rubes to enter the tent? The owners can’t sell this rancid product so it’s left to the coaches to convince the public that there is indeed something to see here. Bill Belichick is a master at this. “Did I say Tom Brady was gonna play? Funny. I meant Brian Hoyer. I tell ya what, I’m gonna make it up to you. Next week Brady’s gonna play three quarters and Chad Ochocinco gonna debut a new celebration where he eats fire after every touchdown. Don’t forget to tell your friends.”

Anyway, we’re sure it won’t be long before preseason cheerleaders are replaced by mannequins. Ah, what’s the use? An August attraction worth seeing, Lori Levine, is back tomorrow.

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Angry Ward, who has admirers at the New York Times, is the quintessential angry sports fan but for one exception... he's flat-out funny. And the angrier he gets, the more amusing his work becomes. Psychiatrists say, "Angry Ward's 'anger' is a direct result of "Bronx/Mets syndrome: growing up in the Bronx as a Mets fan." As if that weren't enough, his Minnesota North Stars abandoned him for Dallas, forcing him to embrace The Wild the way Nancy Pelosi embraces Mitch McConnell at charity events. And while his Vikings only tease him with success, his Golden State Warriors actually win these days. A-Dubya is MTM's longest-tenured indentured servant, its Larry David and quite simply, "The Franchise." (Junoir Blaber disputes this). Vent, curse and giggle with him on Angry Ward Wednesdays.