I heart Mad TV. During the mediocre Saturday Night Live years, it was one of my favorite shows. And my favorite sketch was Lowered Expectations. If you've never seen it, then check out this clip and I'm sure you'll think it's awesome too.
You're probably wondering why I'd start out a Smitty-related post like this. Well, to be frank, our expectations as a fanbase are lower than they once were, and that's pathetic. Pathetic! OK, maybe pathetic isn't a good way to describe it. But, I can't lie, it's starting to irk me. At some point, it's natural to wonder whether there's a breaking point.
I'm in my mid-to-late 20s, and during my time as a Falcons fan, I've honestly expected a Lombardi every year. Maybe I'm just an enormous homer, or maybe my expectations are radically out of touch with reality. Our own Adam Schultz wrote a well-versed dissertation on this subject last week. My problem, and the problem most Falcons fans face, is the temptation to forgive.
It's true. I love this team. I can't quit them. Every year my expectations are raised, and every year, they come crashing down when the Falcons are knocked out of contention. By now I'm used to it.
As for Smitty, he's been nothing but solid. Solid I like. Solid I can live with. He's sure to field an average to slightly above-average squad each and every year. Heck, we even make the playoffs more often than not. He's like a professional darts player with superb technique. Sooner or later, the guy's going to hit the bull's eye, but every time he misses, you just cringe in despair.
That said, discuss the following: how much leeway does Smitty have at this point? Is being solid enough or will Mr. Blank raise his expectations in decisive fashion at some point? If you think this discussion is pointless, then don't participate. But when there's an elephant in the room, I find it's best to point it out. There has to be a breaking point, a point at which Mr. Blank won't tolerate coming to close to the bull's eye any longer.
Ready? Set? Go!