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A case of the Mondays: Flying clotheslines, raccoons and funny faces. Football is back!

Sep 9, 2013, 10:07 AM PDT

Welcome to A case of the Mondays. There’s always a lot going on during the weekend. If you weren’t lucky enough to spend the past two days on the couch, you can catch up on the top five sports items you may have missed here.

No. 1 – Clay’s flying clothesline leads to controversy: In professional wrestling, this is a textbook flying clothesline. In professional football it’s a penalty.


When Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews took out 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick on the sideline, it led to a series of events that ended in a blown call by referee Bill Leavy. After Matthews’ penalty, a flag was thrown in response to 49ers left tackle Joe Staley’s retaliation against the Packers’ linebacker. The penalties were incorrectly determined to be offsetting. The 49ers got another third down and promptly scored. The correct ruling would have been to make it fourth down because both of the flags were thrown after Kaepernick stepped out of bounds.

Packers fans were up in arms, but did it really change the outcome of the game? If the touchdown never happens and a field goal is kicked instead, the 49ers lead 10-7 at that point and possibly win the game 30-28. Sure, the Packers may have played differently in the second half with a bigger lead, but Staley’s retaliation was questionable at best. If you go back and look at the ensuing scrum, Matthews is throwing punches at Staley and appears to be the aggressor. Now, the NFL agrees with that assessment.

In the end, it doesn’t matter. Matthews and the Packers’ defense had no answer for Kaepernick’s offense. The young quarterback threw for 412 yards and three touchdowns in the 34-28 victory. He also had the quote of the day in response to Matthews’ tactics.

”I’m not worried about what people are saying. If intimidation is your game plan, I hope you have a better one.”

Matthews did do some good on Sunday. After sacking Kaepernick, 1,000 cans of soup will be donated to the San Francisco Food Bank.

No. 2 – Al Davis was right all along: The Indianapolis Colts may have won the game 21-17, but they had no answer for Terrelle Pryor. He threw for 217 yards and rushed for 112 more. Pryor currently leads the NFL in rushing yards and kept many drives alive with his legs. After a lot of criticism about how the late Al Davis insisted on using a supplemental pick to take Pryor, it appears he had one last trick up his sleeve.



According to, Pryor was 8 of 10 for 116 yards and a touchdown when the Colts sent a blitz. He was unstoppable with his legs and good on short passes. He struggled with the deep ball, though. After just missing a chance to upset the Colts on the road, the Raiders definitely have something to build on here.

“There are a lot of people that don’t think much of Terrelle Pryor and don’t think much of this team,” Charles Woodson told our Raiders Insider Scott Bair. “We made some plays and we showed well. When you get that close, though, you have to finish the job. In the future, we will.”

In the fantasy football community, Pryor out-performed guys like Tom Brady, Carson Palmer, Russell Wilson, Tony Romo. If he’s a free agent in your league, pick him up.

No. 3 – R&B Scavenger Hunt: This scavenger hunt didn’t have anything to do with top-40 R&B singer Bruno Mars, but it had everything to do with awesomeness. Over the weekend A’s right fielder Josh Reddick (the R) and Warriors forward Harrison Barnes (the B) teamed up to do a mega impromptu scavenger hunt for fans. They gave away baseball and basketball cards.

The Bay Area is lucky to have two of the most fan-friendly professional athletes playing in the same spot.

No. 4 – What’s a Stanford Tree without a Stanford Raccoon to go with it?: Raccoons carry potentially deadly diseases and they love Stanford football. “Go Cardinal!”- Rabid Raccoon fan snorts. During Stanford’s 34-14 victory over San Jose State, a raccoon was seen making itself comfortable in the crowd and even made it into the Stanford Daily’s live blog.

9:38 PM: According to Daily sports editor Joseph Beyda, who is currently sitting in the stands as a fan, a raccoon came in to the field near the North endzone towards the end of the first half. His report has yet to be verified. Beyda is also our least trusted reporter.

One of our “trusty” reporters, Kyle Bonagura, tweeted some evidence.

The party animal was probably pleased with Cardinal running back Tyler Gaffney’s return performance. He scored two touchdowns and ran for 104 yards.

No. 5 – Football Funny Faces: Apparently, funny faces are the best thing about football being back. Eli Manning, Eminem, and this random video-bombing fan all seemed to have the same facial expression this weekend.


Three to see:

If you’ve made it this far, clearly you have some time on your hands. Here are three stories that you simply must see:

— Eminem unintentionally performs a perfect “Manningface” in this bizarre halftime interview.

Korean first pitches keep getting better. This one uses a bow and arrow.

— It was fun while it lasted. After this bomb, Hunter Pence no longer holds the title for longest home run of the season. Evan Gattis’ dinger went a whopping 486 feet, while Pence’s tater totaled an estimated 476 feet.

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