Shmuck of the Week: You

Okay, you and me, and most of the local media, and all of the national media -- everyone, really, except this guy. We read his age, and we heard the lip-smacking and the no-commenting, and we saw all the former Patriots showing up in Dove Valley, and we decided: This guy's gonna fail. We wrote him and his Broncos off, penciled them in for 3-13 or 4-12 or, maybe if a couple teams had plane trouble and missed the games altogether, 6-10.

Of course, we all ignored the one thing we should have heeded: history. We dismissed Josh McDaniels' success in New England as little more than a ride in his mentor's magic hoodie. We dismissed the success of Kyle Orton (and, really, the failure of Jay Cutler), relying instead on arm strength and pedigree and facial hair and lord knows what else. And we seemed to forget what mediocrity we'd suffered through in the waning days of Shanahanian Rule.

And now, of course, 6-0, heading into a bye week, a two-week respite during which we now imagine McDaniels calmly engineering some game plan that somehow declaws Ray Lewis and turns Joe Flacco back into a Delaware pumpkin. They might lose, of course. They will eventually, I suppose. But no matter what, we owe that hoodie-hoarding fist-pumper an apology, and what better way than to anoint ourselves shmucks in his honor.

So it is: Me and you, your momma and your cousin, too. We're all the Shmucks of the Week.

Meet more shmucks in Westword's Shmuck of the Week archive.

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