By: Jonathan Goad
Our current series is going to give the “Space Jam effect” to the current rosters of the four major sports; the NBA, the NFL, the MLB, and the NHL. The criteria for each will be very similar to what happens in the movie.
NFL Superstars will have their talents stolen by aliens, and a currently retired player will have to save the Looney Tunes from certain doom.
As we all know, the Looney Tunes might have lost without the help of the great Bill Murray. He provided a much-needed spark even if he doesn’t play defense. As a wild card, a celebrity will be added to the Tune Squad.
From there, I will make a prediction on how I think the game would actually go. Remember; anything is possible in Looney Tunes Land.
This entry into this series will feature the NFL’s best players. Instead of taking one player at every single position, I am going to use fantasy football as a base.
The roster of Monstars will feature a quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, and a tight end on the offensive side of the ball.
Instead of an entire roster of defensive players, the Monstars will steal the talents of two defensive lineman, two linebackers, and two defensive backs.
The aliens will not steal the talents of a kicker because the Monstars wouldn’t ever kick field goals. They’ll always go for two and will always go for it on 4th down.
Offensively, the Monstars will need to be the game’s biggest touchdown threats when they touch the ball.
On the defensive side, the players chosen to play for the Monstars will need to be the hardest hitters and most feared players in the league. Let’s get started with the offense.
Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
There’s really no need to defend why the Monstars would steal Aaron Rodgers talent. Rodgers is one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history. His ability to make plays not only with his arm but also with his legs is the reason his talents would be greatly sought after by the Monstars. He plays fearless and thrives in big games.
Running Back: Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers
This was another choice that was relatively easy. Bell is one of the most dynamic running backs in the NFL, and he has the ability to score on every play. His hands out of the backfield only add to his stellar talents.
How many times does Ben Roethlisberger just dump it down to Le’Veon and he makes something happen? Just in the video above, it had to have happened at least 20 times. Bell’s playmaking ability is second-to-none. That’s why the Monstars will steal his talent.
Running Back: Todd Gurley, L.A. Rams
Based on talent alone, Todd Gurley might be the best running back in the league. There’s nothing he can’t do. He has explosive speed and is definitely one of the players people stop to watch when he gets the football.
There’s a reason he was the NFL Offensive Player of the Year, last season. Stan Kroenke did Missouri dirty when he took Gurley out of St. Louis. Gurley is a great fit for the Monstars. He’s already got the dreads like the Predator, and the Predator isn’t from this planet. With Gurley’s talent, he may not be either.
Wide Receiver: Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
If you were tasked with creating a wide receiver, Julio Jones is the man you would make. He is a physical specimen and might have actually been created in a lab. He’s 6’3”, 220 pounds and runs a 4.39 forty-yard-dash.
Someone of that size should not be able to move that fast. Jones is just as strong as he is fast. To go along with that, he has excellent hands. At this position, it doesn’t get much better than Julio Jones.
Wide Receiver: Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers
While he’s not as physically daunting at Julio Jones, Antonio Brown has all of the tools you’d want in a wide receiver. So, naturally, the Monstars would be interested. Each of the past four seasons, AB has been selected as First-Team All-Pro. He’s caught over 100 passes each of the past five seasons.
In 2017, he led the league in receiving yards and missed two games. It’s safe to say the Steelers got a steal when they drafted Brown in the 6th round in 2010.
Wide Receiver: Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants
Odell only played four games last season, but it’s safe to say that he still has the best hands in the league. He also has the speed and quickness to excel at this position. In his first three seasons in the NFL, Odell had at least 91 catches, 1,305 yards, and 10 touchdowns in each season.
OBJ is a player who can score any time he touches the ball, which is often. And if these reasons aren’t enough, he has the greatest catch of all time.
I could watch that all day. The crazy thing; that’s not a rare feat for him. Watch his warmup routine sometimes. He makes catches like that look way too easy.
Tight End: Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots
Gronk is a mismatch no matter who is guarding him. He’s fast enough to beat linebackers and too big for corners or safeties. So how do you stop him? Hope he gets hurt, which unfortunately for football fans, he has quite a bit.
If health weren’t an issue, he would be the best tight end in the game without question. His last full season came in 2011 where he had 90 receptions for 1,327 yards and 17 touchdowns.
I don’t think the gap between the first and second best players at one position is wider than at tight end, especially when health isn’t an issue. It also helps that he catches passes from the G.O.A.T. This is a no-brainer for the Monstars.
The saying goes “defense wins championships.” While this one game isn’t necessarily a championship, there’s still a lot on the line. However, the Looney Tunes lives are at stake so you could say it’s bigger than a championship. The Monstars will put together maybe the greatest defense ever.
Defensive Line: Aaron Donald, L.A. Rams
Aaron Donald is just a flat out stud. Just listen to what others in the NFL have to say about him. His name is thrown around with the best players in the league regardless of position.
That’s high praise for a defensive lineman. He requires a double team every play, and he beats that more times than not. He is everything you could want in a defensive tackle. He’s mean and bullies offensive lineman all game. Donald has all the tools of an elite defensive lineman.
Many times, Aaron Donald is in the backfield fast enough that he could take the handoff from the opposing quarterback. His Defensive Player of the Year award was well deserved. This is a perfect fit for the Monstars.
Defensive Line: J.J. Watt, Houston Texans
J.J. Watt abuses the Saints offensive line in the video above. He’s a decent trash talker, too. When healthy, there’s isn’t a better defensive end than J.J. Watt. He hasn’t played a full season since 2015, but he appears to be healthy once again.
In his first five seasons, Watt averaged 15 sacks per year. He recorded 20.5 sacks in a season twice. He has also led the league in sacks twice. He is a three-time Defensive Player of the Year winner.
The only other player to win that award three times is the great Lawrence Taylor. That’s pretty solid company to be in.
It is worth noting how great of a guy J.J. Watt is off the field. He helped raise millions of dollars for hurricane relief for Houston. He is an all-around great dude.
Linebacker: Luke Kuechly, Carolina Panthers
Another former Defensive Player of the Year falls victim to the Monstars. Kuechly is probably the best all-around linebacker in the league. He has no weaknesses in his game.
Often times, he knows exactly what play the offense is running. He might as well be in the offensive huddle. Nothing more really needs to be said. Luke Kuechly is a stud.
Linebacker: Von Miller, Denver Broncos
The slayer of QBs? A destroyer of Backfields? The Stallion that Mounts the Ball Carrier? Those are all pretty accurate.
Von Miller has recorded double-digit sacks in six of his seven NFL seasons. He’s regarded as one of the best pass rushers in the game.
However, he’s an underrated run stopper. Miller is quick enough to beat most offensive tackles. When they do get their hands on him, he uses his bull rush to knock tackles into the backfield. He’s powerful and about as unblockable as a player can be.
Defensive back: Landon Collins, New York Giants
Just three seasons into his NFL career, Landon Collins is already one of the best safeties in the game. He’s a ball-hawking safety who packs a punch.
Miller is not afraid to stick his nose anywhere. He has recorded at least 74 tackles in every season in the league. He totaled 100 tackles in 2016.
That’s insane for a safety. Ball carriers had better keep their head on a swivel when Collins is on the field or else they’re going to take a huge hit. He fits the Monstars perfectly.
Defensive back: Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals
A shutdown corner is one of the most critical positions on the football field. Patrick Peterson is a good as they come at that position. He shuts down some of the best wide receivers in the game and on a regular basis.
It’s to the point where quarterbacks rarely test him anymore, and that is hurting the stats that stand out. He only had one interception last season, but that’s only due to the lack of attempts.
Peterson has been named to the Pro Bowl in all seven of his NFL seasons and a First-team All-Pro three times. The Monstars get their shutdown corner in Peterson, and they’ll need him.
Well, the Monstars have their team and boy, it’s a good one. The Tune Squad may be looking at their first defeat of this series.
Who Saves the Looney Tunes?
No, not that Megatron. This Megatron:
Calvin Johnson is similar to Julio Jones, except he’s bigger and faster. We talked about Julio Jones being created in a lab. No man could create Calvin Johnson. Only God could do that.
Johnson is only three years removed from torturing secondary’s. There’s no doubt that he could still play in the NFL and most of us wish he still was playing. He only played nine seasons in the league, but the NFL has never seen a physical specimen at the wide receiver position like Megatron.
While his numbers don’t quite match up to the likes of Jerry Rice, Calvin Johnson has to be in the conversation of greatest receivers of all time.
Had Johnson had as long of a career as Rice, there might not even be a discussion. Bugs Bunny and Company would welcome Megatron with open arms.
There are two sides of the ball in the game of football. Since the Monstars get so many players for their team, it’s only fair that the Tune Squad receives a defensive player as well. And why not give them a two-time Defensive Player of the Year?
Ray Lewis would help them out, even though he is 43 years old. He would at least be a great leader on the field. Although, I still wouldn’t want to get hit by him.
If that doesn’t get you excited, then just listen to any of Ray Lewis’ speeches. I haven’t played football in eleven years, but watching any of his speeches has me ready to suit up. No one played the game with more intensity than Ray Lewis.
Our Space Jam Celebrity Pick: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
“The Rock” has a very athletic background. He played football at the University of Miami, he played a quarterback in The Gameplan, and he was also a coach in Gridiron Gang. He has also been a WWE Superstar.
As an actor, there’s no role that he can’t play. He’s been in family-friendly comedies and hardcore action movies. He would be excellent in the “Bill Murray” role. It wouldn’t be out of the question to give him an even more significant part because of his resume.
The Game: Matchups
|The Monstars||The Tune Squad|
|QB – Aaron Rodgers||QB – Bugs Bunny|
|RB – Le’Veon Bell||RB – Road Runner|
|RB – Todd Gurley||RB – Daffy Duck|
|WR – Julio Jones||WR – Calvin Johnson|
|WR – Antonio Brown||WR – Speedy Gonzales|
|WR – Odell Beckham Jr.||WR – Sylvester|
|TE – Rob Gronkowski||TE – Porky Pig|
|DL – Aaron Donald||DL – Foghorn Leghorn|
|DL – J.J. Watt||DL – Elmer Fudd|
|LB – Luke Kuechly||LB – Ray Lewis|
|LB – Von Miller||LB – Tasmanian Devil|
|DB – Landon Collins||DB – Tweety Bird|
|DB – Patrick Peterson||DB – Lola Bunny|
|Celebrity – Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson|
The Tune Squad looks like they’re in trouble, again. Realistically, the Tune Squad would all leave this game in ambulances, but we know what can happen in Looney Tunes Land.
The Monstars dominate the first half. They just punish the Looney Tunes physically and on the scoreboard. At halftime, the Monstars would be ahead by multiple touchdowns.
But wait…who is that coming into the locker room?
Yes. The Rock gets to play the entire second half. And not only will he play the defensive line like he did in college, but he’s going to quarterback the second half for the Tune Squad. Remember, Dwayne Johnson played QB in the Gameplan.
Bugs Bunny will move to wide receiver to replace the injured Sylvester, who ran out of lives. Can you say game changer?
The second half is an entirely different story. Like a strange childhood dream, The Rock and Megatron find on-field chemistry instantly.
Right before the Tune Squad’s first defensive series of the second half, The Rock makes a call back to the original Space Jam.
“Bill Murray may not play defense, but I do.”
He then records four sacks in a row.
The Johnson Connection goes off in the second half and leads the Tune Squad to tie the game. The Monstars drive down the field, and Alien Aaron Rodgers once again gets hit by The Rock. However, this time he fumbles. Ray Lewis is right there to recover the fumble.
The Tune Squad will get one final play, but they have 70 yards to go. Insert Looney Tunes Land physics.
The Rock gets the snap and has to kill a little time to Calvin Johnson can get to the end zone. The Rock evades a few defensive players and then heaves the ball 75 yards into the end zone. It looks like the pass is going to go to high, but Calvin