Friday, November 15, 2019

MVP Goblin

It was my birthday Wednesday. Wasn't fact, I felt depressed most of the day. But folks I know have (for the most part) been nice to me the last couple-few days and I'm really trying to work through this funk I'm in at the moment.

Hence, yet another Blood Bowl post.

[and I apologize, but I just need to write (at the moment) and I need to write about gaming (at the moment) and while I've been considering various curmudgeonly D&D-related topics I just can't quite bring myself to mull about in negativity...especially as it only seems to bring more negativity to my mood]

The home town team has been playing well of late, which is always cause for happiness around my household. Yes, they seem inclined on pushing their fans to the brink of heart attack every week (two overtime wins in a row? Jeez!) but...well, when you've watched them as much as I have, you should know this has been the team's modus operandi for the majority of the Pete Carroll/Russell Wilson era.

Waaaay back in 2013, Wilson's rookie year, I wrote about the "magical" season the Seahawks were having, even daring to think "championship," although I could not have foreseen them winning the Super Bowl the following year, nor their return to the Big Dance the year after. I had no inkling that the magical rookie goblin would continue to pull rabbits (and wins) out of his hat for year after year and season after season...there was no way such antics could be sustained in a league of professional athletes and the brightest tactical (coaching) minds of the sport. Look at the top quarterbacks of his draft year: Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III (RG3), both of whom were selected in the NFL draft before Wilson. Their careers hardly panned out the way people expected (they were selected #1 and #2 overall)...but that's how NFL careers often go; nothing is guaranteed. And the sport is so team oriented that it's difficult for ONE player to make a significant difference (impact, yes; difference, no) without the rest of the team (and coaching staff) also working together.

Yet Russell Wilson has not only survived but thrived...leading his team to the play-offs even when parts of his team have been falling apart. Not that Coach Carroll has ever allowed a season to become a complete dumpster fire like, say, the Cleveland Browns...but every year seems to bring new challenges to overcome. This year it's been fumbled-handed skill players, an utter lack of pass rush (until Monday's game against the Niners), and a defensive secondary that's been horsewhipped by really mediocre offenses on multiple occasions...something unheard of in the Carroll era (who was himself a defensive back before building his career as a defensive minded coach). Through it all, Wilson has continued to deliver, only missing the play-offs in 2017 when injuries to key players (Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor) in a Week 10 Thursday night game (after the trade deadline) precipitated a losing 4 of the their last 7 games.

And he still managed to finish the season 9-7.

Cold blooded assassin...look
at those eyes.
In the Super Bowl years, everything was clicking for the Seahawks AND they had Wilson playing his normal brand of magic...I'd cite a key defensive line injury in the second Super Bowl (to pro bowl defensive end Cliff Avril) that allowed Tom Brady the time he needed to mount a comeback in the 4th quarter (and even so, Wilson still almost won the game despite throwing a grievous interception at the end). This year, the team is far from "clicking;" yet Russell Wilson is delivering his finest season yet. So much so that even national pundits are considering him the MVP of the league, at least through the first ten weeks of the season.

So, as I've done with other players over the years, it's time to revise my prior (2013) Blood Bowl stats for #3. He is currently the highest paid quarterback (and highest paid player) in the NFL, justifiably so. He is pretty much at the top of his game.  He is a superstar. His stat line should reflect that; here it is:

Russell Wilson (#3)
Species: Goblin
MA: 6  ST: 2  AG: 4  AV: 8*
Skills: Dodge, Hail Mary Pass, Leader, Pass, Side Step, Strong Arm, Stunty**
Cost: 250,000 gold pieces
Allowable Teams: Seattle Seahawks (Orc) only

* While the most recent edition of Blood Bowl does allow an increase to Armor Value (AV), it limits the total number of Star Player advances to SIX (earlier editions allowed a maximum of seven advances). This increase models Wilson's inherent durability and is reflected in his cost.
** Unlike most goblins, Wilson has shown a remarkable ability to withstand punishment that would sideline a normal quarterback; he ignores the usual injury modification for being Stunty. However, Wilson is a franchise quarterback and his coaches would NEVER allow him to be handled by a troll or thrown downfield; he may not use the Right Stuff skill.

It is a bye week for the Seahawks this weekend, and the orcs are taking a well deserved vacation. I'm not sure how long my current Blood Bowl bender will last; the kids and I have been playing a lot of Firefly this week, but if we decide to pull out the BB teams instead, you might end up reading more of these posts. Sorry, folks!


  1. Living in the bay area now I was able to go to Monday nights game. Seeing it in enemy territory was a treat. Hearing the 49ers fans bad mouth the hawks for the first quarter, yet the team just refused to lose. I dont know anything about blood bowl, but can you hex a kicker by calling time out before they kick?

    1. In football parlance, that's called "icing the kicker," and while it's a common tactic, it almost never works on NFL kickers...they're simply too solid.

      In Blood Bowl, there are no field goals or extra point attempts...touchdowns are counted much like goals in soccer (they're not worth individual points; the team with the most TDs at the end wins). I chalk this up (in part) to the BB designers being British. While American football has gained some UK fans in the last few years, Blood Bowl is nearly 35 years old and hasn't changed terribly over the editions (with the drastic exception of the turn counter being added).

      The MNF game looked pretty amazing on TV...that's the biggest crowd I've seen since the Niners moved to their new digs in Santa Clara. I'm glad the Seahawks were able to put on a good show for the new 49er fans.
      ; )

    2. There are some odd results on the kickoff table and some kicking skills (kick and kick return) but really nothing like icing the kicker.

      For what it's worth, Blood Bowl looks a lot like football, but plays more like rugby or soccer: once the play is in play, it stays in play until either team scores.

      As Commish of the Tyler Blood Bowl League, I'm all for more BB posts. :)