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Totally Not Fake News: The Rites of Autumn

The seasons of the Earth change.

Carolina Panthers v Houston Texans Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

HOUSTON, TX – The calendar is turning. The Northern Hemisphere, having passed the Fall Equinox, is moving further into autumn, with colder temperatures and shorter daylight hours awaiting. It is also when all variations of football dominate the American sportscape. By now, teams are in game-shape and the malaise from the summer break is long gone. Yet, it is also a time for change. Injuries start to take their toll for the players, and for every one that must go to the IR, there is another that must rise up and take their place in the spotlight.

Such is the case for Texans starting quarterback Davis Mills. While only six quarters into his NFL experience, he is already feeling like a grizzled veteran. “I remember those first snaps in Cleveland, so long, long ago” lamented Mills. “Scared out of my mind, frightened to death of the sound of a barking Myles Garrett or a stomping Jadeveon Clowney. Man, I thought I was facing the apocalypse. I even thought that a puppy or two would help. Well, how naïve I was, a green and untried rookie.”

“Little did I know that Cleveland was but just a taste of what things could be. That next game against Carolina, the full game…my [Easterby], I never thought things would ever get that brutal. The hits, the sacks, the constant pressure in my face, the sounds of pain, the smell of the defenders…especially those whose deodorant wore off early on…some things will never leave you, man. They never leave you.” At the reminiscence of those experiences, Mills’ eyes seemed to be glancing off into the void, as if looking back into a beyond that us mere mortals, or at least to our reporters at Totally Not Fake News.

Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans
Davis a more innocent time
Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Other players, well, they weren’t quite so reflective. “Whoopie-[Easterby]-doo” snorted Texans long snapper Jon Weeks. “All these rookies, the green troops, they all say the same things. They come in all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, with these grand notions of coming in and making a huge difference. Then they actually get out into the [Easterby]. Take a couple of tough hits, a few near-misses, and suddenly, they all think they went through Hue on steroids. Kids. Seen it so many times, I can set my pocket watch to it.

Besides, if they think they faced some action now, they should’ve been there for Baltimore, January 2012. That was some real hitting. Brutal fighting, like some major Ia Drang fighting. Don’t think we ever really recovered, even after we made it back to Da Nang…er, Houston.”

Tennessee Titans v Houston Texans
The stories of fighting and combat these eyes have seen...
Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

“Well, maybe, but I can’t wait until I rotate back home and out of this mess. I’ve done my time” Mills asserted. That continence quickly changed when informed that while he was drafted, the Texans were not rotating him back to Stanford. “Wait, What?! I though you were drafted for a while, do your time, and then they send you back home??? What sort of army is this? Isn’t that what happens when you’re drafted?”

“Kid” snapped Weeks “This ain’t the Army. You just took a couple of tough knocks from some other dudes who think that Carolina Blue looks cool. Besides, did you look at your latest pay stub? You ain’t makin’ that kinda money at Stanford and you [Easterby] ain’t makin’ that kinda money in the Army. You know, the whole ‘You never get rich, you son of a [Easterby], You’re in the Army now’ [Easterby]. For [Easterby’s] sake kid, buy a [Easterby] clue!!!”

Upon further reflection, Mills seemed to change his tune “Oh, oh, I see Mr. Jon Weeks, Sir! Thanks for your guidance. I appreciate the wisdom you just imparted Mr. Weeks, Sir!”

“Kid, will you knock it off with the Mr. Jon Weeks, Sir Long Snapper of the Earldom of Kyle McNaridom? I don’t know what [Mr. 2021 NFL Defensive Player of the Year and NFL MVP] Vernon [Hargreaves III] is doing to you, but you gotta stop that [Easterby]!” Weeks barked. “Oh, and get off my part of the practice turf, ok?”

Still, given the experiences of the past week for Mills, you can’t blame the young quarterback for being all over the place in his physical, mental and psychological state. He went from holding a clipboard to throwing his first pass, completing his first touchdown, and finding himself trending on social media to a degree no one ever expected.

The NFL version of the thousand yard neck, er, stare

“Seemed kinda tough for him” noted Offensive coordinator Tim Kelly. “Been working with him to try to get the basic down, like footwork and forward motions. You should have seen him when he first got to camp…the footwork.” We at Totally Not Fake News obtained some of that initial training footage.

Observed injured starter Tyrod Taylor “Well, it is quite a thing for a new guy to come into the league and then go from off the bench to making a start. They sit for a few games, then the starter goes down, and then he starts and leads the team to glory. Meanwhile, the previous guy, who, through no fault of his own, and probably more the fault of some drunk[Easterby] medical dumb[Easterby] who didn’t quite master that difficult skill of determining the difference between a back muscle and a lung, must update his LinkedIn Profile again and find another job, again. All the while, praying that the curse from the old woman beggar he blew off on a trip to downtown Baltimore as a rookie gets lifted. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to find 3 live chickens to sacrifice, er, cook before the light of a full moon. Maybe that’ll bring the curse to an end…maybe.”

Houston Texans v Cleveland Browns
Remember him?
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

As for Davis Mills, since he figures to be the starter for a least a few more games, here is some information about the new starting quarterback and social media sensation:

Favorite Childhood Toy:

Favorite Bird:


Favorite Star Wars Character:

Favorite Jurassic Park Character:

(For some reason, Texans GM Nick Caserio always seems to start salivating whenever he sees this particular photo)

With that, the team moves forward through autumn and the heart of the schedule. Hopefully, the Texans and Davis Mills used the long break between games to get their bodies and minds right, for they face perhaps some of the most brutal and ferocious adversaries they will face all season. These opponents care not for their own physical safety, and they dang sure don’t care about their adversaries. They put fear in the hearts of even the greatest of players. They have no fear, and if they get their liquid courage, then they are neigh unstoppable. They are regarded among the best and most dangerous of foes.

We, of course, are referring to the #BillsMafia, perhaps the most devastating of adversary fanbases. How the team handles them will determine how well their stay in Buffalo goes. Oh, and they have a game against the Bills, so there is that.