You just don't know where he'll pop up next
| Home | Back Story | Friends | Patriots Program |

Friday, September 25, 2009

3 and a big weekend

Sox magic number is down to 3!
And a big weekend in the Bronx is upon us. Now, realistically this series doesn't really mean anything because even if the Sox did sweep, they're still 2.5 games back of the Yanks. This is still a big weekend of course, as all Sox-Yanks battles are, because (assuming the Sox clinch the wild card spot) both teams are tuning up for the playoffs, and it's quite possible that Boston and New York - much to the delight of the national media (specifically FOX Sports) will meet in the ALCS...and really, who doesn't miss those epic match-ups from 2003 and 2004??
More importantly about this weekend, however, is that the Sox could officially clinch a playoff berth. Either way, it should be a fun weekend with some great - albeit LONG - games.
To officially throw out predictions, I say the Sox take tonight's Lester v. Chamberlain match-up, the Yanks take Sunday's game with Paul Byrd going, and while I really want to say the Sox pull it out Saturday, I still don't trust Daisuke, and I certainly don't trust him against the Yankees, so I think New York pulls it out Saturday as well and Daisuke hits the 80 pitch mark in the 3rd inning.
Let's hope I'm wrong about Saturday.
3 and counting...

Labels: , , , , ,

Monday, September 21, 2009

Too early to panic?

I don't have any banner updates. But, because I've been silent for a week I thought I would check in with some other random thoughts, mainly on the Patriots.
Now personally, I'm a glass-half-full kind of person, so I'm going to take the optimistic view of the Patriots 16-9 loss to the Jets on Sunday and say that maybe it's good to get a loss out of the way early in the season, after we all know how the undefeated regular season did nothing to secure a Super Bowl championship. In 2007, the Pats started out on fire and faded a bit towards the end. Hopefully, they are on a reverse track this year, and will hit their stride to finish the season rather than start. Besides, a loss gives the coach a lot to dissect and correct.
Even being an optimist however, there were far too many red flags on Sunday - in my opinion - to be completely comfortable with the team right now. I know they need time to gel, I get that, especially after losing 5 starters from their defense of last year, and another to injury. So I'm ok with the occasional lapse in play/communication/execution. I have a massive problem with their defense however, starting with the secondary. I'm no football expert, but it seems to me that a defense should either be able to pressure the quarterback or cover the receivers...I mean seriously, if the quarterback can sit in the pocket all day and the receivers are wide open all day, what exactly are the 11 guys on defense doing??? The secondary isn't good enough to pull off a zone defense as often as they try to play it, especially if no one is getting to the QB. I can be patient maybe another week, but there defense really needs to start coming together.
My second issue, obviously, is with the offense. Hey, Tom Brady is coming off major knee injury/surgery, he's a bit rusty, understandably so. It's not really fair to expect him to be spot on right from the get go. But receivers - come on! Is it me or do they seem to be dropping too many passes? Which brings me to #13. Is it too early to call the Joey Galloway signing a failure? Well, yes, it is. I mean, it's only week 2. Given the first two games of the season, I am even more confused by the cutting of Greg Lewis before the season started. I went to Training Camp, and I read all the news and notes, and all you seemed to hear/read/see was Brady and Galloway (when he was on the field) not being on the same page. If this was week 1 or 2 of training camp, I'd be more patient. But they've been practicing together for what, 8 weeks now at least? And they don't seem to be getting any more in synch. Galloway was horrible yesterday. Where they all perfect throws from Brady? No. But a 15 year vet shouldn't look worse than a rookie. Again, I'm not calling his signing a failure just yet, but unless he starts looking much improved really soon, it's going to start looking that way.
The Jets are a good team with a very strong defense, and they outplayed the Pats yesterday and deserved to win. The Pats aren't as bad as they looked yesterday, so I'm not too concerned about the loss. But the defense better pull themselves together, and quick, or else hometown hero Matt Ryan is going to tear them apart next week in Foxboro.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Game Day Program

What a Monday night! The Dan the Banner story officially got published last night in the Patriots Gameday Program for their game against the Bills, and the story was awesome! It was really exciting to see Danny in the program - I definitely picked up quite a few copies and will be showing everyone I can, haha. Hopefully the article will bring people to the website! And if you missed it, click here to read the article as it appeared in the program!
Of course the game wasn't too shabby either, it's so great to be full board back into football season. Definitely a little tighter game than the Pats would have liked, but they certainly have a lot to build upon. And oh yeah, it's nice to see Tom back in the saddle leading game-winning drives!

- The Banner Keeper

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Danny's day almost here

The countdown to Danny's story going public to the Foxboro area is on...4 days! Tonight is the big NFL 2009 season kickoff, I'm actually watching the Titans-Steelers game now and - being an avid Steeler hater - am pretty pumped about Hines Ward blowing the win for the moment and sending the game into overtime. Don't you just love football season??? What a wonderful time of year, great to have it back.
In more home-related news, I received an e-mail a couple days ago with the pdf file of Danny's story for the Patriots Game Day program and it looks great! I'm really excited for the game in general of course - Tom Brady returns, TO set to dismantle yet another team, opening night, Monday Night Football - but being in the program for that night is going to be even more excited. I'll probably post the story on here in a few days, but anyone going to the game make sure to pick up the program and check out pg 74-75!

Labels: , , ,

Monday, September 7, 2009

Is Danny bad luck?

Last year I joked with Danny that the reason Jerod Mayo had such a great year was probably because he took a picture with the banner during training camp that summer. Given the moves the Pats have made in the past week, I can't help but wonder if maybe this year Danny was bad luck. Now I know, I know, that this year I got a lot more pics with Danny at camp, and obviously a decent number of guys were going to get cut from the team before the season starts, but with the surprise release of WR Greg Lewis today by the Pats - yes, a Dan the Banner picture taker this summer - I'm starting to think Danny may be bad luck. First, Kevin O'Connell surprisingly was cut last week. He took a picture with Danny, and was really nice about it. Russ Hochstein & David Thomas? Both took pics, both unexpectedly got traded. Andrew Walter didn't make the team. Then, Ray Ventrone got cut on cut day as well, not a total surprise but still unfortunate given he'd taken a picture with Dan and was a fellow Villanova alum. Now today, Greg Lewis, who took a picture with Danny and was really really nice about it, gets cut as well. What is going on?!? I hope it's just a coincidence and not Danny being bad luck because I did get that picture with Brady...
In other notes, I apparently have no eye for what's going on at Training Camp. I thought O'Connell had a great camp, a couple miscues here and there but also some glimpses of greatness. Apparently I was way off on that one as he didn't even make it through the preseason. Greg Lewis also seemed to have a great training camp, and a pretty good preseason. Still really surprised about his release, makes me think Bill's got something up his sleeve. Time will tell I suppose.
Keep an eye out for the banner, and cross your fingers Dan's not causing these Patriot problems!

-The Banner Keeper

Labels: , , , , , ,

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Eric Church meet Dan the Banner

Add another country singer up to Dan the Banner, and once again Patriot Place is the place to be with Dan. On a day that included witnessing a 54-0 shellacking the BC football team laid on Northeastern, the highlight of the day had to be the Meet & Greet with Eric Church I was lucky enough to win through Cat Country. Of course, I had Danny in tow, and though it took a little bit of convincing to let me get Danny by security into the venue - I just happened to leave out having metal support pipes for the banner in the bag - it was about time for my cousin and I to meet Eric. To be quite frank, the whole ordeal wasn't exactly handled efficiently, but in the end alls well that ends well, so can't complain too much.
In line waiting for my turn, I was a little rushed trying to but Danny's stand together, but along the way I actually ran into a guy with the venue running the meet & greet who I had chatted with when Chuck Wicks was in town, so he knew the story of the banner and made it a little less rushed trying to get Danny together. I ended up being last in line to meet Eric - and had to wait a little bit of time for my turn as two completely trashed 20-something yr old girls were busy hanging on Mr. Church in a groupie-esque flirt while his subtle attempts to finish the conversation and shoo them off were in vain.
Time finally came and I got to meet Eric Church! He was really cool, seemed really laid back, was happy to take a picture with Danny mouthed a big - yet inaudible "WOW" - when I explained the shortened version of the banner. He took a pic, which wasn't the best ever because the lighting was a little tough, and nicely signed the back. It was pretty funny during our short convo that the first question he asked about Danny was how tall he really was, and laughed when I informed him he was only about 5'9", as opposed to the 7 ft banner. All in all it was a great encounter, always happy to add to the Danny collection. And of course, big thanks to Cat Country 98.1 for hooking up the meet & greet!!

The show was great, the crowd was CRAZY!!! Everyone was really really into the show, mostly a young 20-ish crowd, and the enthusiasm definitely made Eric get really into the show. I didn't actually know most of his stuff going in, and to be quite honest a lot of it sounded pretty similar, but it was a really good show. And he stayed up there for a while!
Stay tuned for upcoming adventures for the banner, Billy Ray Cyrus is coming in town in about a week, and I can't promise I won't scope out the venue to see if there's a banner-pic opportunity.

- The Banner Keeper

Labels: , , , ,

Friday, September 4, 2009

Eric Church get ready...

Well well well, if today wasn't a pleasant day. As I was standing at work - zoning out just a touch - I got a wonderful phone call from the nice people at Cat Country 98.1 to inform moi that I had won a Meet & Greet with Eric Church at the show I'm going too tomorrow night! Not only was it great news because winning contests is always great news - and a M&G no less - but also because while I knew I was going to the show tomorrow at Showcase Live, I had succumbed to the fact that getting a picture with Danny & Eric Church would likely be out of the question because I would be at BC (opening game 2009, woohoo!) most the day up to the concert. BUT NOW I have a guaranteed meet & greet, which means as long as I can get the banner into the venue - and I'm confident I will succeed there - tomorrow I will have added yet another friend to Danny's growing posse. Very excited!!!
I'll check back in tomorrow to let you all know how it goes with Mr. Church and his soon-to-be new friend Dan the Banner!

- The Banner Keeper

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dan's getting published!

Watch out New England, Dan the Banner is getting published. I pretty much knew this was going to happen, but know that all the chats and details have taken place, it is official...there will be a story on Danny, the banner, me and my daily trips to training camp in the Pats Gameday Program opening night against the Bills! Pretty awesome if I do say so myself. I spoke with a media employee with the Pats today - who had approached me about the story one day at training camp - I gave him all the details he wanted about Danny and the banner, and now we just have to sit back and wait for that first game when Danny is the "Fan Story" for that day's program. As if opening night, vs. the Bills, Monday Night Football, T.O in town, and the return of Tom Brady wasn't enough to look forward to for opening night, here's one more thing!
Very excited about this... always willing to expand the Dan story to anyone and everyone!

-The Banner Keeper

Labels: , , ,