The Stack is back on this Tuesday with lots to talk about. What with the baseball playoffs and Monday Night Football, there was a lot going on on Monday. Time to not waste another moment. Let's get right to it and see what made "the stack" for today, Tuesday, October 8:
Jets stun Falcons on MNF
The Atlanta Falcons came into Monday's night game desperate for a win to improve to 2-3 and keep their playoff hopes in decent position. Those hopes are becoming much more dire now following their 30-28 loss against the New York Jets. The Falcons once again got off to a slow start and made some curious calls like electing to go for it late in the first half from the one with one second left rather than kicking a field goal. The Falcons were stopped. They couldn't get a consistent running game until it was too late and Roddy White could once again not stay on the field. Their defense wasn't much better either and when Matt Ryan finally got the Falcons the lead back 28-27 with under two minutes to go, the defense failed to hold the Jets, allowing Geno Smith to drive down the field for the game-winning drive. He looked really good, really comfortable. Big time win for the Jets who improve to 3-2. The Falcons season is now on the ropes. They're 1-4. They're on the bye this week so that gives them a chance to get healthy on both sides of the ball. Their playoff chances are slim at this point. Forget winning the NFC South. Time to focus on just making the playoffs.
Tremendous day yesterday of in the MLB playoffs. A quartet of games that all were filled with drama. In Detroit, the Oakland Athletics are one win away from advancing to the ALCS following their 6-3 win over the Tigers. The A's roughed up Tigers pitcher Anibal Sanchez. They hit three home runs and six of their ten hits went for extra bases. The Tigers are on the brink of elimination and need a win to save their season tonight at 5:07 PM ET on TBS. The other AL series between the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays was sensational. The Red Sox jumped out to the early lead before Evan Longoria tied the game up 3-3 with a three run homerun. The Rays had a lead going into the ninth inning, but Fernando Rodney failed to keep the Red Sox off the board. He did get out of a jam and allowed just one run, but the game was still tied heading into the bottom of the ninth. Then with two outs, pinch hitter Jose Lobaton came up to the plate and belted one deep that landed in the sting rays tank, keeping the Rays postseason alive with a 5-4 win. They still trail the series 2-1. They fight to keep their season going with first pitch tonight at 8:37 PM ET on TBS.
In the NL, the Pittsburgh Pirates are now faced with having to go to St. Louis to win game five to advance to the NLCS following their 2-1 loss to the Cardinals. This game featured tremendous pitching. Four total hits in the game. The Cardinals got on the board first when Matt Holiday hit a two run homerun in the sixth inning. Cardinals pitcher Michael Wacha (Wacha Wacha) had a no-hitter going into the eighth inning before the Pirates got their first and only hit of the game when Pedro Alvarez went deep to get the Pirates on the board 2-1. That was the final score and the Pirates are in trouble. Would love to see them win, but it is not going to be easy. In the other NLDS matchup, the Los Angeles Dodgers advanced with a come-from-behind 4-3 win over the Atlanta Braves. Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the eighth, Juan Uribe stepped up to the plate with a man on and took Braves pitcher David Carpenter deep to left for a two-run homerun and the 4-3 lead. Once again, the Braves fail to do anything in the postseason. They are the masters of playoff disappointment. The Dodgers will now wait for either the Cardinals or Pirates who play game four tomorrow night. Tremendous day of baseball playoff action.
Flyers fire coach, Josh Freeman not starting Sunday
A couple of other quick headlines from Monday. In the NHL, the Philadelphia Flyers fired head coach Peter Laviolette. The Flyers are 0-3-0. They are a mess. It could be a long year in Philly for hockey fans...And in Minnesota, Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier says newly acquired quarterback Josh Freeman will not play Sunday, but that he will have a chance to compete for the starting quarterback position. Frazier also said that Christian Ponder will be his starting quarterback if healthy. Hope he's joking. Matt Cassel played very well in London two weeks ago and got the Vikings their first win. Maybe Frazier is just trying to keep the Carolina Panthers on their toes this week. If he doesn't start Cassel, he's essentially trying to get fired.
NFL Week 5 Power Rankings
1. Denver Broncos 5-0
The Broncos proved that it's going to take more than 48 points if you want to beat them.
2. New Orleans Saints 5-0
Drew Brees is as lethal as ever. The defense has made a remarkable turnaround. Watch out for the Saints.
3. Kansas City Chiefs 5-0
Maybe they're not quite the third best team, but when you're undefeated this far into the season after winning just two games all of last year, this qualifies you as deserving of a top three spot.
4. Indianapolis Colts 4-1
Must be nice to have a little Luck on your side. The Colts proved that they are a legit threat with that win.
5. Seattle Seahawks 4-1
Tough to knock them down this far, but the Seahawks are still one of the top two teams in the NFC and a top five team for sure in the NFL. Can't be too disappointed about the loss to Indy.
6. Cincinnati Bengals 3-2
Pretend like you play against the Patriots and Packers every week Cincinnati and you'll win every game.
7. San Francisco 49ers 3-2
The 49ers offense looks like it is finally finding their identity once again. That and their defense is really, really good.
8. New England Patriots 4-1
Bye-bye 52 game touchdown streak for Tom Brady. Finally the experience or lack there of caught up with the Patriots. No need to panic though. The Pats will be back.
9. Baltimore Ravens 3-2
See what happens when you give Ray Rice the ball more Baltimore? You win games!
10. Green Bay Packers 2-2
The Packers got the win and shut down the Lions offense (which wasn't that hard without Megatron), but the offense is still mssing the firepower from last year.
11. Chicago Bears 3-2
The Bears defense was no match for Drew Brees. Bears have to find a way to end the two game losing streak.
12. Detroit Lions 3-2
The loss of Calvin Johnson clearly cost the Lions any chance of winning Sunday. Any more missed time could result in more losses.
13. Miami Dolphins 3-2
Unless the Dolphins can figure out someway to protect Ryan Tannehill, they won't be going as far as they hoped to go at the beginning of the year.
14. Tennessee Titans 3-2
Someone should maybe tell Chris Johnson he needs to pick up the slack with his team's starting quarterback out. 66 total yards is kind of embarrassing.
15. New York Jets 3-2
Geno Smith grew up before our very eyes on MNF. The Jets are better than most of us thought.
16. Dallas Cowboys 2-3
There are no moral victories in the NFL, but at least the Cowboys competed with the Broncos until the very end. The Tony Romo hating needs to stop. Wouldn't have been in the game had it not been for Romo.
17. Cleveland Browns 3-2
The Browns should be commended for winning three in a row, but it's going to be hard to win four in a row with Brandon Weeden back as the starter and if the Browns try to trade away more key pieces like Josh Gordon.
18. Arizona Cardinals 3-2
It wasn't pretty, especially from Carson Palmer's standpoint, but the Cardinals are above .500 and playing much better than last year.
19. San Diego Chargers 2-3
Apparently the Chargers needed more time to prepare for their late Sunday night game against the Raiders. First game this year where they looked like the losing team.
20. Philadelphia Eagles 2-3
Big win for the Eagles to snap their three game skid. Now can they win two in a row with Nick Foles starting at quarterback?
21. Oakland Raiders 2-3
Terrelle Pryor may be the real deal for the Raiders. They may have found their franchise quarterback.
22. Houston Texans 2-3
The Texans are quickly becoming a sinking ship. Need to throw Matt Schaub overboard perhaps to stay afloat.
23. Atlanta Falcons 1-4
Injuries have devastated the Falcons this year, but who would have ever thought they would start out 1-4 and lose back to back home games? Not I.
24. St. Louis Rams 2-3
At least the Rams didn't lose to the Jaguars. No one would mind if they leave for St. Louis had that happened.
25. Buffalo Bills 2-3
With no EJ Manuel for the next few weeks, the Bills could be in a lot of trouble with Thad Lewis and Jeff Tuel leading them at quarterback.
26. Minnesota Vikings 1-3
With the addition of Josh Freeman, the Vikings now have a three ring circus at quarterback. They'd be wise not to make Christian Ponder the ring leader.
27. Washington Redskins 1-3
Hope the Redskins used their bye week to fix their dreadful defense. If not, expect more of the same the rest of the way.
28. Carolina Panthers 1-3
Here's where we have to wonder if Cam Newton is ever going to be a consistent good quarterback.
29. Pittsburgh Steelers 0-4
The Steelers were irrelevant last week because the Pirates are in the playoffs. Wouldn't think you'd hear that would you?
30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 0-4
Now that Josh Freeman is gone, the Bucs can now just go back to being a bad team without as much dysfunction.
31. New York Giants 0-5
The Giants season is officially off the tracks. Wonder when we'll start to hear Tom Coughlin is on the hot seat.
32. Jacksonville Jaguars 0-5
At least the Twitter battle between the Broncos and Jaguars is entertaining. The game won't be. Can it get any worse after losing offensive tackle Luke Joeckel for the year?
Coming up Wednesday: MLB playoff reaction plus other top stories in sports