1. We have covered Naughty and Nice. We will beat the rookie and free agent storylines to death in the weeks and months ahead. All that's left today is to make sure Santa has the most up-to-date list of everything I want for Christmas. Thank God for the internet...I don't think the U.S. Postal Service delivers to the North Pole anymore. Shocker...the USPS business model is failing. For a measly 44 cents, you put an envelope outside of your front door, they walk up to your house, pick it up and then deliver it to anywhere in the country? FOR 44 CENTS!?!?!?! Who was the Postmaster General who thought up that winner...Vinny Cerrato? Let me guess, if you upgrade to first class mail, you get a second round pick thrown in?
2. World peace. Big ticket item...I know. That's just the kind of guy I am.
3. The Philadelphia Eagles could very well be playing for a postseason spot in Week 17. Things have to transpire this weekend for that to be possible (Eagles beat Cowgirls, Jets beat Giants) but there is a good chance that our game could be make or break for Philly. That is what I want more than anything on this list. It is not just about spoiling the filth party that would ensue if the Eagles won. It would be the perfect final exam for a team that is not bowl eligible. The Eagles have no excuse to be bad. They have a boatload of talent and would have all the motivation in the world to win. That is the kind of game you want to be in no matter what the circumstances. That is the kind of test you want for your young players before they go into offseason study mode.
4. Speaking of offseason study mode...I want our mega-haul of draft picks to live up to their collective hype for being high character leaders among men. I want this offseason to be one where all of our first-, second-, and third-year guys get serious about taking it to the next level. They have been granted extended playing time and will have a ton of film to go over in slow-motion for the next six months. After an offseason this past summer of zero contact between players and coaches, I would like to see a real proactive bunch this summer take advantage of everything at their disposal to get ready for our 2012 campaign.
5. You always hope for an injury-free finish to the season for your team, and you never wish any injuries upon any man just because he is wearing a jersey you don't particulary like. If I was somehow able to magically guarantee the health of one player through the next two weeks, it would be Roy Helu. I love what he is doing and I love how tough he is running the football. I am a little amazed that people are still very underwhelmed by him. Granted, I see Tim Hightower coming back and being depended on a great deal in 2012, but how can we possibly discount the impact Roy Helu could have on our team for years to come--especially if he is able to stay healthy?
6. I want Ryan Kerrigan to get to double digit sacks. Currently, he is sitting on 7.5 sacks, which to me is already a real achievement for the rookie. Getting up and over ten sacks in his rookie campaign would be something that would not only signal a bright future for the rookie, but it would underline the wisdom and discipline Bruce Allen employed on draft day last April. I think it is already somewhat apparent that we signed up a group of young players that should be factors for years to come, but I would really like to add just a little shine to it by getting Kerrigan into double digit sack territory.
7. One thing our defense has not been this year is opportunistic. I read that our defense has caused 23 fumbles in 2011 (6th in the league), but only recovered 7 of them, good for 22nd in the league. I will be very specific about what I want here--I want DeJon Gomes to be the guy who develops a nose for the ball. Remember how Chris Horton invaded all of our hearts as a rookie? It wasn't because he locked down opposing receivers or stuffed runners at the line. If you recall, it is because he caught a few tipped passes and recovered a few bouncing fumbles. Gomes needs to be that guy for us. I think he is getting better in the tackling department and I like him getting this valuable playing time, but he needs to come up with three turnovers between now and the final whistle against Philly.
8. I know rooting for a meltdown by another team is a bit of a selfish and immature Christmas wish. I don't care. Let the Cowgirls lose. Just the chance to see the look on Jerry Jones' face when he realizes it is all over and his team is done is enough to make me very, very happy.
9. I think I have managed to mention Tebow in about 96% of my posts lately, and I intend to keep it up, if for no other reason than I believe it somehow keeps me in favor with the big man upstairs. I want Tebow in the playoffs. I am not asking for any Denver wins or anything like that. I just think what Timmy has done since taking over in Denver is nothing short of miraculous, and I want the hype and buildup that will surely be associated with a Denver playoff game. Everyone wants to give Tebow and the defense all the credit, but I would like to give a special nod to John Elway. That dude convinced Champ Bailey to stay. He hired John Fox, and resigned Matt Prater. He demanded that the team be led by its defense and drafted Von Miller. He changed the culture completely in Denver from what it had become under Josh McDaniels--and what it had been under Shanahan. Elway is firmly in charge, but he does it by empowering all the voices in the building to speak up and have a say. He is an example of a guy who was special on the field and has somehow managed to continue being special in a different capacity. Maybe it's because they're in the AFC. Maybe it's because they're such fun to watch on television. Maybe it's because we waxed them in the Super Bowl. I like Denver and make no bones about rooting for them.
10. Of course, it goes without saying that world peace tops the list of my Christmas wants, but I feel like that would be kind of selfish of me to put such a tall order down on December 21. Let's put it this way, Santa: start with the easy stuff like making sure Philly has something to play for in Week 17. Give Kerrigan a few sacks and Gomes a few turnovers. Then, when you're all warmed up, get Tebow to the playoffs. Once you have a decent sweat going, take a swing at world peace.