One of my favorite products of the Redskins-Titans game was only subsequent to the on-field product, strange as that sounds to admit after weathering a grueling offseason of counting down the months/weeks/days/minutes/seconds 'til kickoff, was that crafty devil Dillweed's impressive analysis of the first string offensive line play-by-play at Post Game Heroes.
I am not certain that the local newspapers have reached a conclusion about the line's play that is mutually exclusive with Post Game Heroes, so I'm going by Dan's word on that. But were that the case the conclusion many fans would probably reach is that Post Game Heroes got it wrong and the wisdom of the masses (of local reporters) is better judged.
Yet I watched the game with my own eyes and nothing about the PGH's line analysis jumps out at me as false per my recollection -- which was admittedly affected by alcohol. I didn't think Wade performed better than everyone else on the line, but I don't necessarily absolutely believe that I'm right about that; countless times I've believed that a player did worse/better on the field than was actually the case after a second viewing, a statistical analysis, or a dialogue with other viewers.
And all that was really said in the PGH analysis was that Todd Wade made two good blocks and one bad one in the run game. The offensive line was largely evaluated on the two sacks it allowed against Jason Campbell that resulted in fumbles, one lost. Though as was documented elsewhere neither of those happened to be Todd Wade's fault:
The other sack was the result of a stunt by defensive tackle Tony Brown, who raced past right tackle Jon Jansen to get to Campbell.
Said Bugel: "Jon happened to trip on Randy's foot, and that's why the guy got through clean. They ran it three times, and two of the three times we picked it up, and the bad one was a sack."
But what does Dillweed know? I mean, he's just a guy... with two eyes just like mine. Just a guy... who does what I do. He's just a guy... and so am I. So count me among those predisposed towards believing his analysis -- my bias is out in the open. Because if you can't count on a guy named Dillweed posting on the tubenets with what appears to be credible analysis of a game I watched then you certainly cannot count on a guy named Skin Patrol posting on the tubenets with what frequently appears to be idiotic, confusing, or factually incorrect analysis. Commenter FW at The Bog made this concern explicit, emphasis mine:
[Quick Aside: This is not at all an attack on journalists. But Journalism school does not train individuals to accurately and intelligibly analyze the sport of Football. Rather it exists to promote good Journalistic habits such as writing and reporting (which is why those guys are so much better than me in both those areas; I didn't go to journalism school. Philosophy, for full disclosure). Without knowing anything about Dillweed except that he has an awesome pseudonym, there's no reason to presume that he's less qualified to analyze football than any newspaper's particular beatwriter. And sometimes being qualified to discuss football in virtue of, say, having played it at a competitive level, doesn't necessarily mean you'll be any good at analyzing it in the first. So, like, take that.]
A similar though more nuanced criticism against the "citizen journalists" of the internets was leveled by Richard Schickel though the subject of that discussion was the invasion of book reviewing by the unqualified masses. This would be Books Haven or some nonsense and I'd be pining idiotic on literature.
A brilliant SB Nation colleague of mine responded to that criticism as relates to sports citizen journalism, blogging, more eloquently than I possibly could. In response to Shickel's observation, not unlike FW's above, that credentials are important:
By the way, I'll be out today relocating to a new town in order to pursue my own credentials at Law School later this month. I say that only to apologize for a lack of posts, of which this is probably the only one today, though regular blogging resumes tomorrow. My good friend at Behind the Steel Curtain and I have some interesting stuff planned for this Saturday's game against the Steelers, so stay tuned. Or don't. Because what qualifies me to talk about the team I love?