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Zero Insight: Sid Hartman is Enamored with Blocking Receivers not Catching the Ball

Occasionally, Purple Jesus likes to check in with geriatric columnist Sid Hartman to see what secular insight the elder architect has included in his daily column. Most likely it is full of piss and vinegar, like the old man himself, but occasionally Purple Jesus comes across nuggets like these …


Whether making a big catch or clearing a path for running backs, the receiver is healthy and on a roll.

Oh, good, so you mean he’s doing his job? Why are we writing an entire article on this then?

Yes, Greg Lewis caught the winning touchdown pass from Brett Favre as the Vikings beat the 49ers 27-24 in the final two seconds Sunday.

Ok. So are you going to write something insightful about this lesser known player?

And Percy Harvin ran a kickoff back 101 yards for a touchdown, tied for the second longest return in team history.

Oh, so maybe an article with this rookie sensation that everyone is currently infatuated with?

But one of the unsung receivers on the team is Sidney Rice, who is off to a great start as the Vikings have gone 3-0.

… Sooooo we’re going to read about Sidney Rice doing his job. Did you just pull a name out of your musty old top hat this week or what?

The third-year receiver caught a 30-yard touchdown pass from Favre to put the Vikings in front 7-0 in the first quarter and wound up with four catches for 56 yards.

My goodness! This is truly fascinating. While I actually do appreciate Sidney Rice on this team and think that he’s both a good receiver and valuable blocker and that he had a fairly decent game on Sunday, I don’t know if I would go so far as to call him “unsung”. I think the last receiver on the Vikings roster that was heralded as “unsung” was Bobby Wade, and of course, he was so valuable he was sent packing.

Through the first three games a year ago, the former South Carolina star, who was drafted in the second round in 2007, had two catches for 31 yards and one touchdown.

But he was hurt during, like, the entire year, so those numbers hardly reflect what an average season would be. Also … three games. Three games out of an entire fucking year. Hardly an effective sample of work, would you agree?

In the first three games this year, a healthy Rice has nine catches for 102 yards and one touchdown.

Really, I wouldn’t call that an improvement. Looking at these paltry samples Rice’s average yards per catch was actually better in 2008 than this year. Also, maybe you should make note that Rice actually has a quarterback that doesn’t motor boat tits on the weekend. I mean, Favre would but there was that whole … cancer … thing … Ahhhhhhhhhhh … let’s move on.

A year ago, Rice got hurt in that second game and then missed six games because of a problem with his knee.

Oh, so you actively know this yet were still trying to compare the two seasons? God dammit, you old man!

However, while caching passes is something Rice naturally enjoys,

He fucking better, he’s a god damn receiver. That’s why we wasted a second round pick on him! He’s not getting paid to put on a hair show.

he said blocking for Adrian Peterson and the other running backs is equally important.

It is, but I hope you don’t make an article out of a receiver blocking for a running back. Not only is that boring, but you know there isn’t a single receiver that would prefer blocking over catching. That’d just be dumb. They don’t make the money for blocking. Buuuuuut if I had to guess, I would say Rice will probably toe the company line here and say it’s a great and rewarding challenge for him to block and then you’ll just take that idea and fly with it.


“It’s a team effort. You can’t go out there and just expect to catch the ball,”

What? You’re a receiver. Is your job description not to catch the ball? Sure, you don’t catch it every play, but you better expect the ball is going to be coming to you every time you’re on the field. That’s your J-O-B.

… he said. “You have to go out and contribute to the team in other ways. I feel blocking is just as important as catching the ball.”


Asked if he was a good blocker in college,

Oh, you mean in the run-first offense of South Carolina? Hm, I would probably say no. Fuck, do you do any research before asking these people questions?

… Rice replied: “Yes. They had us blocking all the time,

Again, run first offense of South Carolina. Jesus.

… and when I got here they just carried it on.

How exciting for a receiver. You have to run block your entire college career and then you get to the pros and they say, “Hey, we drafted you high as a receiver, but will you continue to run block? That’s really all we need you to do.” That’d be like getting your law degree and then getting hired as a receptionist at a law firm. Or being a top paid prostitute in New York and then moving to Des Moines and being a waiter. I mean, waitress. What?

Every Wednesday we come out and do what we call ‘Run Block Wednesday.’

This, as opposed to “Rape Wednesday”

That’s one thing we work on every day of the week no matter what.”

It’s a priority over catching!

On some of the good blocks he has made on Peterson’s runs, he said: “You always have to be on your toes with Adrian running. One good block will spring him free. He’s able to beat defenders by himself.

With the Ban Hammer, until their left bloody and dead.

If you are around and get a little piece of somebody, it increases the chances of him taking it the distance.”

What’s it like blocking for Peterson?


“It’s tough sometimes, but it’s also easy sometimes,”

It’s also difficult to edit interviews sometimes.

Rice said. “He hits it so hard.

Just ask Rhianna!

He’s a speedy guy, and has a lot of power. Our job is just to get our hands on our man and press up to him and make sure he doesn’t make the play.”

Sidney, that may be the gayest sounding thing I’ve heard since I asked that guy if he wanted a banger in the mouth. Of course, I was talking about a sausage at breakfast …

As for Favre, Rice said the quarterback is talking to him more.

Saying things like “Hey” and “Boy, I bet you wish your name was Greg Lewis”

“He’s opening up more and more every day.

What is this, your fucking boyfriend?

I’m starting to learn different things about him,” Rice said. “After being here with him for four weeks, I think he’s a great person. He’s a fun guy.”

“A little touchy though.”

Is the ball he throws difficult to catch?

“Not in my mouth!”

“We’re working on it every day,” Rice said. “We’re getting more comfortable with each other.

Mmm, this one might be the gayest. Keep going though.

All our receivers are. Hopefully, it will continue to improve throughout the season.”

Does Favre give you some ideas?

Oh, I bet. “Now turn around and keep your blindfold on, hurr hurr …”

“Always. He’s a great coach as well as a player,” Rice said. “This is his 19th season, and he knows what to expect out there on the field. I try to get as many tips from him and learn from him. I’m just trying to contribute to this team in any way possible.”

Aaaaaaaand fin. How completely uninteresting. At the very least Sid refrained from offering a typical line of “In all my years of covering the Vikings I’ve never seen a receiver with such dedication to blocking for a running back. This Sidney Rice kid will be special.” As will be your early bird special at Perkins, my king. Rest thee head well until you have to break more journalistic ground, Sid.