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Posted on: September 26, 2012 2:46 pm
 

Weekly Recap Week 3

 

The original intent for the column this week was to not
mention the replacement referees even once. However I have come to the
conclusion that it would be impossible not to speak on the subject. The refs
should not be the story in this game that we all cherish so much. Sure refs
make mistakes; officials in every sport make mistakes, on a daily basis even. The
integrity of the most popular game in our nation though is now being
compromised and what I fear most is that Commandant Goodell doesn’t care.

That man has pounded into our heads and the heads of the
players that the shield needs to be protected. The integrity of the game needs
to be protected. He champions protecting the players in order to protect the
league. Well the Commandant now has substitute teachers running the classroom and
someone is going to get seriously hurt. Everyone remembers the feeling of
having a substitute teacher in class; you feel emboldened, you push the limits because
the sub doesn’t know the rules or is too afraid to enforce them. Injuries have
already started. Darrius Heyward Bay of the Oakland Raiders spent the night in
the hospital after a helmet to helmet hit. There was no flag on the play. Tony
Romo was sacked with a helmet to his chin; there was no flag on the play. How
he even got up is beyond me.

Those that were defending the replacement refs argued that
nothing really has changed statistically from last year as far as the amount of
penalties being called. Well, there should be a lot more this season than last
the way some players are playing.

There is a lot more to it than just the safety of the
players, but Roger Goodell has spent the last few years shouting from the top
of a mountain how deeply he cares for the safety of his players. He claims that
his number one concern is the safety of the players. I call BS.  Money and power are his number one concern.

The scariest part of all of this is nothing is going to
change unless the real refs give in. Goodell and the owners hold all of the
cards and they don’t care if we fans suffer because they know one very
important fact; we won’t stop watching. They know this and you know this so
nothing will change. If you don’t think I’m right just read the BS statement
the NFL released after the Monday night debacle in Seattle. Everyone knows what
happened and everyone outside of Seattle knows the Packers got hosed. What did
the NFL say? They admitted there should have been pass interference, but as far
as the pass being a catch or an interception the league hid behind the lawyer
speak of the official rule book. In so doing they pretty much sided with the
substitutes. There is no way Golden Tate had any possession of that play.

That’s enough of that let’s get on to the games.

Eli Manning is again the best Manning brother in the league
this year. He led the Giants and a band of backups over the Panthers in decided
fashion. Cam Newton’s sophomore slump continues.

It looked pretty promising for the Rams before they traveled
to Soldier Field. Jay Cutler had the meltdown the previous week and the Rams
were coming off a pretty impressive win over the Redskins. Not to be; The Bears
utterly dominated Little Sammy and the Rams. The Bears now travel to Dallas
Monday night. Let’s see if Cutler can keep his composure in prime time?

The Bills beat the Browns and remain in first place. The
Amish Rifle marches on.

The False Start Bowl was held in Dallas with the Cowboys
hanging on to beat the Buccaneers in one of the sloppiest games ever played in
the NFL. 23 penalties for 174 yards combined. If the Cowboys are looking to do
something special this year they need to learn discipline. They have committed
31 penalties in three games.

Detroit lost to the Titans in Tennessee. Actually it would
be more accurate to say that Detroit lost to Jim Schwartz on Sunday. The new
overtime rules state that if the team receiving the ball scores a field goal
then the other team gets a chance to do the same. Detroit opted to go for it on
fourth and one rather than kick a chip shot field goal. Needless to say they
didn’t make it and lost the game. Did Matt Millen make that decision? I haven’t
seen such an egregious coaching error in a very long time.

The Jaguars and the Colts are irrelevant and will be the
entire season; maybe longer.

The Jets barely beat a girls’ team in Miami. Please stop
trying to ice the kicker right before he kicks?

The best team in the league (as this column anointed last
week) got beat up on by the Vikings. I know Minnesota is a tough place to play,
but if you want to be the best team in the league San Fran, you have to win
that game against that team.

We all knew the Saints were a mess, but did anyone realize
it was this bad? Getting beat by the Chiefs in the Super Dome? Defense is just
a rumor in New Orleans.

 The Redskins were
destroyed by the Bengals, well the score doesn’t show it, but the Skins were
never in that game. Looks like RGIII will have to wait a little longer for win
number two. Washington travels to Tampa this week and hosts Atlanta the
following week.

As I told you last week turnovers are going to catch up with
Mike Vick and the Eagles. Three more this past week brings the running total on
the season to 12; in just three games. Arizona is [one of] the best teams in
the league. That defense is exceptional.

The Falcons are one of only three undefeated teams along
with the aforementioned Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans. It’s too early to
go all in on Atlanta, this team has folded in the past and until they prove
they won’t I’ll stay weary. San Diego sucks and will continue to as long as
Norv Turner is head coach.

Matt Schaub traded part of his ear for a victory over the
Broncos in Denver. The Texans continue to roll as questions about Peyton’s arm
strength continue to mount.

As with the 49ers; the Steelers need to beat the Raiders
even in Oakland. They didn’t and their record is now 1-2.

It was another great game by the replacements in Baltimore
Sunday night. We should be talking about how good of a game it was and what a
great story Torrey Smith was, but no; the referees stole all the storylines.
The Patriots are now 1-2 and trail the Bills by a game.

Then there was Monday night. I’ve spoken enough about the
refs and they are the biggest story in that game; except for the fact that
Seattle has found one hell of a defense. The Pack have some major problems on
the front line.

I’ve said enough; let’s hope Goodell and the
real refs get something done quickly. Don’t count on it though.
Category: NFL
Posted on: January 4, 2011 10:27 am
 

Weekly Recap Week 17

By BRAD DEGNAN

 

Week 17 of the NFL regular season arrived with not as many questions about the playoffs as perhaps the Commish would have liked. It was the first time in the NFL that every game was a divisional game for the final week of the season. The only game that was ‘win and you’re in’ for either team was the dreadful matchup between the Rams and the Seahawks. A few other games had minute questions such as where the team would be seeded. So as you would expect there were some real crappy games. Many starters for playoff bound teams either didn’t play or played very little. It didn’t take long for another coach to get the ax and the league said goodbye to one of the most exciting players it has ever seen; again. So let’s see what happened in week 17 and take a look at what the playoffs have in store for us.

Right off the bat, goodbye #4. There is no reason to linger. There will be plenty of time for that over the off season. Your legacy has changed a few times over the past number of seasons, but what I hope you are most remembered for is your unmatched love of the spotlight. Nobody can hold an entire city and fan base hostage quite like you can. Safe travels friend and please, please, please don’t come back. One more thing; for the love of God stop taking pictures of your penis.

What may have been the most disappointing display for a team that could’ve made the playoffs ever was the effort that the Jaguars put up against the Texans. All the Jags had to do was beat Houston and hope the Colts lose. I don’t think anyone told the Jaguars this because they played like they were already in the playoffs and just were going through the motions. And reports today say that Jack Del Rio’s job is safe. Sorry Jag fan, look forward to more of the same next year. Maybe they’ll put some more tarp over the seats they can’t sell in order to not be blacked out on local TV.

Is it shameful to say that probably the most entertaining game of the day was the St. Louis-Seattle game? The playoff scenario was very easy for both teams; beat the other team and you win the division. Well, the Seahawks prevailed and for the first time in history a team with a losing record will host a playoff game. The Apocalypse is upon us.

The feel good story of the week was definitely in San Francisco. Interim head coach Jim Tomsula had one chance to be the head honcho on the biggest stage his sport offers. The defensive line coach was promoted just a week ago after Mike Singletary was ousted. When Tomsula was asked who he was he answered, “I’m Jim Nobody from nowhere.” That just may be who he will be for the rest of his life, but at least he got to live his dream, if only for one game and his boys routed the Cardinals.

Eric Mangini was seen leaving the Cleveland Brown’s complex with a box full of his personal belongings. What happened to the Mangenius anyway? And will Chumley step down and coach the team himself?

Tampa Bay is the best team not to make the playoffs. I’m sure they’re shaking their heads about Seattle, who by the way will host the Saints this weekend, a team the Bucs just beat in the Superdome. Oh to play in the West.

Speaking of the West, the Raiders swept the AFC West and didn’t make the playoffs. Nearly impossible to do, but they did it. Tom Cable’s job is safe for the sheer fact that Al Davis is afraid of him.

My Super Bowl picks are still alive, but for how long. Baltimore should be able to handle the Chiefs this week, but the Patriots are lurking and might be the only team that stands between them and me cashing in a big ticket. And the Saints as mentioned have to go up against the juggernaut NFC West Champs.

The MVP is wrapped up and stop saying it should be Mike Vick. He missed like four-and-a-half games and the Eagles didn’t even lose all of those. No, Tom Terrific will get his second MVP trophy that he will put on the mantle next to his wife’s… whatever it is she gets for making twice as much as the highest paid player in the NFL.

Arian Foster won the rushing title. If you were reading in the preseason I told you to watch out for this guy.

DeMarcus Ware won his second sack leader award handed out to the player that has the most sacks in a season. Actually I don’t think he wins anything maybe just some more of Jerry’s money.

Rookie of the year without question will be my boy Little Sammy Bradford. Great season Sammy the skies’ the limit.

The Least Valuable Player goes to the Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Chad Henne. I won’t bore you with his mediocre stats; the fact is that this guy has no idea on how to lead a team. One win at home this year? He looked good against the Patriots this week though.

Alright, what is the best matchup for Wild Card Weekend? Green Bay at Philly for my money. The Pack defense is going to give Vick fits.

After that I got the Jets at Indy. Can’t wait to hear Rex try to fire his team up through the media; the sad part is it will probably be the last time we hear from him for a long time.

Baltimore at Kansas City. The Chiefs had the top ranked rushing game in the NFL. They however played six games against the AFC West. Baltimore will handle its business.

I’m not discussing the other game anymore it’s already taken up too much of my time.

Enjoy the first round of the tournament folks. Talk to ya next week.

Category: NFL
Posted on: December 28, 2010 6:18 pm
 

Week 16 Recap

The Jets continued to struggle Sunday against the ‘Can’t Ignore Us Anymore’ Bears. Despite the loss, the Jets will still be in the playoffs thanks to Jacksonville’s loss. Be wary Jets fan, limping into the playoffs with a warm weather quarterback may not be the walk in the park it was last season.

The Patriots continue to impose their will on the rest of the league. They have gone seven straight games with no turnovers and have only nine on the season. Tom Terrific set the record for most pass attempts without a pick Sunday with his 1300<sup>th</sup> unpicked pass. There is no stopping this monster, hide your children hide your wife.

Kansas City went from worst to first in the AFC West. What is it with the West Divisions? Other than K.C. every team sucked this year. If a team with a losing record hosts a playoff game I hope it’s blacked out.

Mike Singletary became the fourth coaching victim to be put out of his misery this season. Four! That is an astonishing number. At least he was able to coach 15 of the teams 16 games. Good luck Jim Tomsula, your fifteen minutes is going to last about three hours and then you can start looking for a new paycheck.

Fans in Houston are organizing a rally to get Head Coach Gary Kubiak fired at the end of the season. The rally will be held before the Texans host the Jaguars on Sunday. Team owner for the Texans, Bob McNair, gave Kubiak a vote of confidence a couple of weeks ago. We all know what that means; Kubiak’s last head coaching gig will be week seventeen of the 2010 NFL season.

The Vikings and Eagles game was postponed Sunday and will be played on Tuesday in Philly, due to snow. It was postponed before a single flake of snow hit the ground. And why Tuesday? Might the four-letter-network have some interest in having the sole game on Monday? Some other questions to ponder: What if the Ice Bowl had been postponed? What precedent might this have? Are we moving to an NFL where every team plays in a dome? From the reaction of the Vikings’ fans at University of Minnesota last week; they no longer wish to watch in the dome, the fans were having a ball outside in the cold and snow. The funniest argument against postponing the game comes from Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell; essentially he said the country as a whole is becoming a wuss. You can read his whole diatribe at profootballtalk.com. It’s way too long to put down here and it also tightropes the line of racism.

The Chargers who never lose in December lost their second game this season after November. What San Diego and the nation have learned is that the Chargers aren’t that good. Carson Palmer proved he doesn’t need his Diva Twins at wide receiver as he threw for nearly 270 yards and four touchdowns. It has to be like two giant mouths were removed from his back.

Miami continues to prove they can’t play in the elements; the pristine elements of south Florida that is. One win at home this year. And they played Cleveland, Buffalo and Detroit who they lost to this past week. The Lions won their second straight on the road after dropping their previous 26. This team has a killer defensive line and if Matt Stafford can stay healthy next year the Lions will return to the playoffs. You heard it here first.

The Jaguars threw their game against the Skins away and probably the AFC South. An ill fated pass in overtime proved to be very costly for Jacksonville and just might get their head coach fired. Because the only way the Jags win the South is if they beat Houston and Indy loses to Tennessee (which ain’t happening).

The chosen one earned his first career victory by bringing the Broncos back from a 17 point deficit in front of his home crowd. Let the anointing resume.

Indianapolis have gone on a 3 game win streak and have scored 30 plus points in all 3 games. Peyton’s will is carrying this team into the playoffs. All the injuries though, will be the downfall for this team.

Aaron Rodgers returned for the Packers to continue the bloodletting of the Giants. It has been said many times before; Eli is no Peyton.

In a game that might have had the biggest playoff implications of the week the Saints edged the Falcons on costly turnovers and strange officiating. For what might be the first time in NFL history, both the receiver and cornerback were flagged for pass interference on the same pass from Matty Ice in the second quarter. Mike Smith very well may have had a heart attack after that flag. Well the Saints are not quite ready to hand over the torch just yet. Drew Brees is a machine, but there is something wrong with Reggie Bush.

Gotta give props to FIU for winning the prestigious Little Caesars Pizza Bowl; their first Bowl appearance. FIU rallied back from a 14-point half time deficit by scoring 27-points in the second half. Including an unbelievable conversion on 4<sup>th</sup> and 17 with the ‘ol hook and ladder play in the waning seconds. Before the conversion the Golden Panthers were down by two. FIU fans, which were there en masse, went bananas as the game winning field goal split the uprights with quadruple zeros on the clock. Definitely one of the better Bowl games so far this season. Way to go FIU.

That’s all there is for this week folks talk to ya next week and then it’s off to the playoffs.
Posted on: December 15, 2010 8:27 am
 

Week 14 Recap

By BRAD DEGNAN

 

Weather and wacky finishes seemed to be the theme this week in the NFL. There’s just three games left in the regular season and only one team has clinched a playoff berth. The Jets are trippin’, the Raiders are flippin’ and the Patriots are showing no sign of slippin’. The Falcons have the best record in the NFC and the longest winning streak in the NFL and no one seems to notice. A complete collapse in Minnesota and a record streak comes to an end. Let’s peel back the layers from week 14 to see what happened and take a look at some huge games next week with lots of playoff implication.

We have to start off with the statement game of the season thus far; Patriots at a blustery and snowy Solider Field in Chicago. The game was supposed to be a test and a low scoring contest. It was neither. By the time the Bears left the field for the warmth of the locker room at halftime the scoreboard read 33-0. Both teams are cold weather clubs, but only the Patriots looked it. Tom Terrific was unfazed by the elements while Jay Cutler was bothered both by the weather and the Patriots defense. New England had its fifth straight game with no turnovers. This is how you win championships and with their eighth playoff appearance in the last ten years they are now the leader in the club house for Lombardi.

Another AFC East team seems to be imploding before our very eyes. The Jets lost their second straight division game this one at home to the Dolphins. The last two games the Jets have put up a daunting nine points. Is it me or does Sanchize look like a quarterback from Southern California in the cold? If he struggles this December like last, they’re in big trouble. Two of their last three games the Jets travel to Pittsburgh and Chicago, both cold weather and at least one a must win for them to reach the playoffs.  

The Jets’ strength and Conditioning Coach has been suspended the rest of the season (including the Playoffs) for tripping Dolphin’s gunner Nolan Carroll while covering a punt. The play was reminiscent of a Woody Hayes moment.

Jay Feely had the best week ever. The Cardinals kicker banged home five field goals, including a 55-yarder, in addition to scoring a touchdown on a fake field goal attempt. Fantasy owners of Feely rejoice.

The Buccaneers and Redskins game didn’t have the weather that the Patriots and Bears had to deal with, but it was a down pour and Donovan McNabb struggled. Washington’s kicking game also struggled with the wet field. Kicker Graham Gano missed two field goals of 24 and 34-yards. The Skins looked as if they were going to tie the game in the waning seconds though with a simple extra point. The snap however slipped through holder Hunter Smith’s hands; as did the game. Washington is a real mess, but at least they’re not the Cowboys.

Speaking of the Cowboys; how can you justify going up to the quarterback who just beat you and ask him to autograph your glove. Tashard Choice did so by explaining it was for his nephew. The Cowboys continue to amaze.

Of all the games outside, exposed to Mother Nature, there was not one that was worse than the Green Bay Detroit game, which of course was played in Detroit, in a dome. Sure Aaron Rodgers was knocked out of the game with his second concussion of the season, but come on? Unless you’re a Lions fan this game sucked.

Keeping with the weather theme, Minnesota received the fifth largest snowfall in state history over the weekend causing the Metrodome’s roof to collapse. The Vikings’ game against the Giants was then moved to Detroit where all hope of a home field advantage was nonexistent as the freeloading spectators at Ford Field were more interested in doing the wave than watching the football game. This game also saw the end to a true “Iron Man” streak for most consecutive games started by a quarterback. Favre’s’ streak stands at 297. The Vike’s may have to play next week’s game at the University of Minnesota, which is outdoors. If this happens don’t expect #4 to lace ‘em up.

The Jaguars pulled off another victory and are in the driver’s seat for the AFC South. The Raiders squandered a huge day by Darren McFadden who had nearly 210 combined yards and 3 touchdowns, two of which were over 50-yards. The Jags are winning but don’t be surprised if there is a collapse either before the postseason or in the first game they play of the post season. Jacksonville’s point differential is minus 36. No other playoff bound team is close to the negative. That is if you don’t include the NFC West where all four teams are in the negative. Can you believe one of those teams may host a playoff game?

It’s week 15 next week, and as mentioned there are some huge games. The battle for the AFC South takes place in Indianapolis as the Jaguars try to extend their lead to two games over the Colts. Philly travels to New York to face the Giants, these teams have identical records with the Eagles beating the Giants earlier this season. Jets @ Steelers as mentioned just might be a “must win” for the Jets. Will Aaron Rodgers play as the Pack travels to New England? And don’t forget the big Cowboys and Redskins game, woo hoo.

That’s all for this week folks and sorry for all the stats. Talk to ya next week.
Posted on: November 16, 2010 5:51 pm
 

Weekly Recap Week 10

What a weird weekend in the NFL. You had one game in which three quarterbacks went down, and another where the lights went down. There was a game that used every bit of overtime and sadly enough we found the return of the NFL Network’s coverage of Thursday night games. Seriously, as good as that game was the coverage was pitiful. On the flip side NBC continues to deliver even if it is handed a lopsided affair. Finally after that Monday night massacre of the Redskins, fans are exhausted. So let’s discuss week ten.

The Dolphins seemingly didn’t need a quarterback in their disposal of the Titans. After Chad Pennington went down early in the first, recently benched Chad Henne entered the game and led Miami to their highest point total of the season. After the final play of the first half Titan’s quarterback Kerry Collins conveniently hobbled off the field with an apparent calf injury. Henne lasted until he went down in the third quarter with a knee injury. So the Fish resorted to the wildcat for the remainder of the third quarter. Once the fourth quarter began the ever popular Tyler Thigpen took over the quarterbacking duties. Despite playing against a team with no quarterback the Titans could not overcome their three turnovers. Pennington is out for the year and Henne’s season is up in the air, so the Dolphins did what any team would; they signed Patrick Ramsey.

The Thursday night game may have been the best game of the week, but there is no question that it was the worst covered. There are an abundance of things the NFL needs to improve on not least of which is replacing the entire broadcast team. The play-by-play guy is terrible and Theismann and Millen don’t have any chemistry. The audio was awful unless you enjoy the suck fest that the two color guys put on for Matt Ryan. The coverage is markedly improved since the days of Bryant Gumbel, but the NFL needs to fix this, it’s embarrassing.

Did you happen to see Rex Ryan’s press conference leading up to the Ryan Bowl? Dressing up as his now fatter twin Rob, Rex was hilarious. You’ve got to love this guy. The NFL needs head coaches like this; it’s a nice change from the stuffy domineering head master we are used to. By the way the Jets won their second overtime game on the road in consecutive weeks.  Rob Ryan is now 0-3 in the NFL against his brother.

Let’s go Buffalo! In their ninth game of the season the Bills finally found that elusive victory. The Lions have now lost and ever expanding record of 25 straight road games. Next week they are on the road again; this time in Dallas.

As for the Cowboys, I’m going to skip the all too easy “Lights Out” word play. The Cowboys came out swinging like a boxer fighting for pride and dignity. Make no mistake these Cowboys’ players played for themselves. As for the lights going out maybe the Giants should have saved some of the $1.6 billion dollars they spent on their new stadium to pay the power bill. I guess the lights in New Jersey don’t ring as bright as in New York.

What’s up with Todd Haley? After his Chiefs were pummeled by the Broncos Haley refused to shake Coach Josh’s hand; he instead opted for a finger wagging at his opposition. As if his team wasn’t embarrassed enough.

The collapse in Minnesota continued this week and the 41-year-old #4 again looks every year of it. How long is Mr. Noodle going to last as head coach? And aren’t his press conferences the best; standing up there doing his best Dark Knight impression?

Those who attended the Jacksonville game were again treated to a thrilling finish. In what seemed to be yet another game heading for overtime the Jaguars put their paws together in prayer and were rewarded with a 50-yard Hail Mary for a touchdown. In what’s become a routine non sell out and subsequent black out; did anyone in Jacksonville see it?

You knew Hoodie’s team was not about to lose back-to-back games, especially after being manhandled by the Browns.  So Tom Terrific was back to looking terrific and Big Ben looked too big to get out of his own way. The NFL Network should look to NBC to see how they broadcast a prime time game.

What was supposed to be VickNabb Bowl II never happened. Instead Mike Vick continued his community service by putting on a clinic for the kids in the Washington area. Vick had one of the greatest games by a quarterback in the history of the league. Involved in six touchdowns Vick is starting to show that he can pass in the pocket; who knew? Prior to the game McNabb was rewarded with a contract extension for five years and $78 million. Not a bad way to receive an apology. He celebrated by throwing three interceptions.

A post script to this game: DeSean Jackson should really choose his words more carefully. In describing the mood of the Eagles after a pre game altercation with the Redskins he said, “We were like pit bulls, ready to get out of the cage.” Too soon Jackson.

Consistency seems to be the one thing eluding the top tier teams this year, so you still can’t say without reservation who’s the best team in the NFL. Bad weather is on its way and that will reveal a lot more about the so called elite.

We have some marquee match ups to look forward to in week 11. The Pack travels to Minnesota looking for the sweep while the Colts and Patriots duke it out for dominance in the AFC. A couple of key divisional battles include the Giants at Eagles and the Broncos at Chargers. This is the point in the season where things start to get very interesting.

That’s it for this week kids talk to ya next week.

Category: NFL
Posted on: November 10, 2010 6:24 pm
 

Weekly Recap Week 9

For the first time in 50 years the Cowboys have fired their head coach mid season. Wade Phillips was put out to pasture just eight games into what was supposed to be a promising season. And a week after Jerry Jones said Phillips would remain head coach for the rest of the season. The thumping the Cowboys took for the third straight week must have changed his mind.  The reigns will now be taken by Jason Garrett, the architect of the NFL’s 31<sup>st</sup> ranked rushing offense. While Phillips may be partly to blame, there is plenty of blame to share with the entire organization. Don’t expect a quick fix just because Philips is gone; this team is in disarray from top to bottom. Everyone knows the Cowboys need a no nonsense coach and the same names are being tossed around by all the talking heads. Nothing though, will matter much as long as Jerry and his giant ego remain in the way. The Cowboys will improve tremendously the day he realizes to step away and let a general manager and a head coach do their jobs.

Enough about the Cowboys. There was plenty of other headline grabbing games and plays in week nine. The so called best team in the league got beat by a perennial bottom dweller. While one New York team was nearly embarrassed the other was doing the embarrassing on the other side of the country. Week nine also introduced a few new players to the nation and some well known players take their shot at a new position.

The Bucs showed some guts when they traveled to Atlanta. In a back and forth game it came down to the final minutes and a goal line stand. On fourth-and-one from the Falcons two the Bucs decided to run it. It didn’t work as LaGarrett Blount was punched in the mouth for no gain. Atlanta now leads the NFC South by themselves, but Tampa is on their way up.

I don’t often give credit to this guy, when it’s deserved however I do. #4 threw for 446 yards in the Vikings overtime victory against the Cardinals. It was his career best and just the second time in 286 starts that he threw for 400 yards. His 36 completions were also his career best. Way to go #4 at least you didn’t get carted off the field this week and let the media go bananas all week wondering if you were going to start next week.

The Browns had their biggest win since; since they beat the super bowl champs 2 weeks ago. New England went into Cleveland on top of the world and looking to role the pitiful Browns. Mangini had a different plan for his former boss. Some chicanery and a relentless dose of power running was way too much for the Patriots young defense. The Browns’ defense with their different fronts and looks reduced Tom Terrific to a mere average quarterback. If you didn’t know who Peyton Hillis was before the game he made sure you know him now. Hillis was running like a man possessed. He ran for 184 yards and two touchdowns. I think Cleveland made out on the trade when they sent Brady Quinn to Denver for this guy, just another stellar move by Coach Josh. How’s Brady doing this year Coach?

The lone highlight for the Patriots was Wes Welker’s successful extra point.

The Lions nearly pulled off a huge upset this past week against the Jets. If it wasn’t for a complete breakdown they just might have won. A horrible play call in the fourth quarter and a late hit out of bounds allowed Sanchize to stay close and force overtime. The Jets were only down three points late in regulation because of my favorite play of the season. Jason Hanson, the Lions kicker, was hurt earlier when he was roughed up on a field goal attempt. So the backup kicker/defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh replaced him for an extra point try. He was unsuccessful, but he looked great. Suh actually won the backup kicker job in training camp and would probably be playing in the English Premier League if he wasn’t so massive.

Looking forward to next week when the Ryan twins go head to head as the Jets travel to Cleveland.      

Another player you may not have heard of before last week’s games is the Oakland Raider’s Jacoby Ford a rookie out of Clemson. Ford lifted the Raiders over the Chiefs in what could be described as a chippy contest. The most impressive part of the Raiders’ victory was their 15 penalties. It’s pretty tough to get flagged 15 times in today’s NFL.

It was a scary moment in the Colts and Eagles game when Austin Collie took a shot to the head. A flag was thrown on the play which enabled the Colts to continue a drive. The response by the Eagles’ defense seemed a little inappropriate while Collie lied on the turf obviously unconscious. Several minutes passed as the receiver lay motionless and some Eagles’ players looked as if they were ready to fight the refs for throwing the flag. The Refs had to do something in that instance. There was no malicious intent in the hit and it didn’t deserve a penalty, the refs are just taking orders from upstairs. The problems wasn’t in the penalty, it was in the reaction by the Eagles.  

The Bills lost for the third straight week by three points. So now it’s official, the Bills stink in the US and Canada.

The Ravens (my Super Bowl Pick) were very opportunistic with three takeaways in their victory over the Dolphins. Baltimore also held the ball for nearly 20 more minutes than Miami.

The Giants didn’t knock another quarterback out this week, but might as well have. In Charlie Whitehurst’s first NFL start he went 12 for 23 and 113 yards. He did throw a touchdown though in garbage time. The Giants are looking pretty good.

That’s it kids. Talk to ya next week. Sorry for all the stats.

 

Posted on: November 2, 2010 8:33 pm
 

Weekly Recap Week 8

By BRAD DEGNAN

 

Week eight snuck up on us and with it came the much anticipated London Bowl. Back in the US the rest of the league played minus the six teams with a bye. Of those twelve games there were some great ones, an absolute crapfest and one game in which only one team played. Sunday Night Football drew a bigger audience than the World Series and a couple of former superstars were knocked down a peg by their coaches. Let’s dive into week eight and see what the NFL delivered.

We might as well start at the epicenter of all the mania in the NFL; Donovan getting benched and Randy Moss getting waived.

First off the Moss debacle: You kind of get the feeling that Moss didn’t want to leave New England after all; or is it he just didn’t want to go play for the Vikings again. Moss informed head coach Mr. Noodle that he was going to stay in New England for a couple of days following Sunday’s game; that in and of itself is not that unusual. Recently traded players returning to the town they used to play for and spending extra time there is quite common. It must have been the last straw. The next day it was announced that Moss was going to be waived. If Hoodie has the ability to smile I’m sure he is smiling and thanking Mr. Noodle for the third round draft choice. On the other side Percy Harvin may be weeping in a corner somewhere.

Mike Shanahan benched Donovan McNabb in the fourth quarter in the Redskins’ loss to the Lions. Shanahan said that McNabb has some cardiovascular issues. This begs the question, “Was T.O. right in criticizing Donovan after the Eagles Super Bowl defeat in which McNabb puked in the huddle?” So let’s get this straight, Rex Grossman is a better option than McNabb? I think not. But wait, it gets even better; JaMarcus Russell is working out with the Skins this week. Could the biggest bust in modern football history cause a quarterback controversy in Washington? And how long until Daniel Snyder blows up?

A boy named Suh? Did everyone get a chance to see Ndamukong Suh’s fumble recovery for a touchdown? While Suh was trotting to the end zone seemingly all by himself he nearly pulled a Leon Lett while Santana Moss tried to do his best Don Beebe impersonation. The only difference was that Moss bounced off Suh like a child off of a bouncy toy. Suh may have a funny name, but the way he reacted to Moss tells me this man has a mean streak. Suh later apologized for his premature celebration.

In what may have been the best game of the week the Chiefs kicked a field goal as time expired in overtime to beat the Bills. It was the second time in two weeks that the hapless Bills have dropped a game in overtime on the road. At this point it’s tough to tell if the Chiefs are for real. They lead their division by two games, but the only win that stands out is their defeat of the Chargers. A lot of people have beaten the Chargers. Rushing for more than 200 yards in three consecutive games is quite a feat.

St. Louis is just one game back of Seattle for the NFC West lead. That crummy division is up for grabs and if Little Sammy Bradford continues playing like he has been, it just may be the Rams division for the taking. Bradford tied a record in week eight with 11 touch downs in his first eight starts. I’m so proud of you Sammy.

Yell defense all you want, but the Packers and Jets game sucked. The two teams combined for nine points and 41 incomplete passes. That is not good football. The Jets are back on notice until they start running the ball again. Mark Sanchez does not need to throw the ball 38 times with that running game and that defense.

The Raiders have come out of nowhere with an offensive machine. After a near record low passer rating three weeks ago, Jason Campbell had a rating of well over 100 for the second week in a row as the Raiders thumped the Seahawks. Tom Cable definitely has his team practicing tip drills. Oakland had two ridiculous catches off of tips in this game, one on offense and one for an interception.

The Niners can do one of two things to save their season: Play in London every week or play the Broncos every week.

Jerry Jones apologized to Cowboy fans following their blowout loss to the Jaguars at JerryWorld. The sorries came a little too late. He should have apologized years ago. Tony Romo should be the league MVP. What other team in the league relies on their quarterback so much? The Cowboys didn’t even give the common courtesy of showing up a week after their quarterback went down. Have you ever seen a team quit like the Cowboys have? If Jones was smart he’d fire up that dump truck full of cash and drive right over to either John Gruden or Bill Cowher’s house.

Every team in the NFC West has a negative point differential. The Rams are the closest to positive with -1.

Look at the Bucs at 5-2. Are they for real? We’re still not convinced, but four fourth quarter comebacks this season is pretty impressive. Tampa is also 3-0 on the road this season and they’re tied with the Falcons for the NFC South lead. We’ll know much more about these Bucs after they travel to Atlanta next week.

The Cardinals have had 9 turnovers in its last two games. If Kurt Warner was hurt rather than retired he might give Romo some competition for my MVP vote.

That’s it for this week folks talk to ya next week.

Category: NFL
Posted on: October 26, 2010 5:23 pm
 

Weekly Recap Week 7

By BRAD DEGNAN

 

There was no shortage of tricks, picks, bad football by good players and exciting finishes in week seven. League records were tied, franchise records were made and ten teams scored more than 30 points. The Raiders led the scoring onslaught putting up 59 at Mile High against the lowly Broncos. Oakland ran for an astounding 328 yards behind Darren McFadden and his 165 rushing yards and four total touch downs. Coach Josh might want to start looking over his shoulder. The last two times that the Broncos were beaten by more than 3 touchdowns at home against the Raiders the head coach exited after the season. Wade Phillips and Mike Shanahan were patrolling the sidelines the last two times that happened. Jason Campbell took a lot of heat last week for his 10.something quarterback rating; well he improved that mark by 117 points this week.

The Giants knocked out yet another quarterback Monday night when Michael Boley wrapped up Tony Romo and road him to the ground breaking his collarbone. Romo is expected to be out six to eight weeks. You may think, “Well there goes the Cowboys’ season.” Actually, the Cowboys’ season was lost three years ago when they hired Wade Phillips.

The Bills lost another heartbreaker to a really good team this week. They took the Ravens to overtime after they had jumped out early on my Super Bowl favorites. Ray Lewis then gave an inspiring speech to his defense and that seemed to rally his troops. The Bills had 506 total yards in the game most coming from Ryan Fitzpatrick’s 374 passing yards. An untimely fumble in over time though exposed the Bills as the team that they really are. The Ravens have some serious questions that need to be addressed if they are to indeed make my prediction come true.

Jay Cutler essentially said after the Bears and Redskins game that DeAngelo Hall isn’t very good. Really? Hall’s four picks off of Cutler (one a pick six) seems pretty good to me. Who isn’t very good is Cutler. He’s starting to look a lot more like the guy who led the world in interceptions last season.

League-wide there were 9 interceptions returned for a touchdown Sunday the most ever in a single week.

If you were wondering who leads the league in interceptions this season it’s Eli Manning with 11. Honorable mentions go out to Drew Brees and #4 each with 10. Brees threw just 11 picks last season while #4 had thrown just 7.

Aaron Rogers is the happiest guy in the league today. Albeit a short schnide, he finally got off of it. Rogers beat the old man Sunday night for the first time. Rogers certainly didn’t look great, but was effective enough to outduel the turnover prone #4. It doesn’t get any easier for the Vikings as they travel to New England next week to take on Tom Terrific and Hoodie.

Trick plays were abundant for the Browns’ special teams as they got up early on the Champs and stayed up. The first bit of trickery came when Josh Cribbs fielded a punt and threw the ball across field to Eric Wright who ran down to the Saints 19-yard-line setting up the games first three points. Later in the first half, punter, “Fast” Reggie Hodges took the long snap and bolted right up the middle of the field. The Saints were caught unawares and Hodges flew down the field untouched for 68 yards to the Saints nine-yard-line. That led to another field goal. Is the ManGenius back? Brees could never get on track. He threw four interceptions including two to David Bowens who returned both for touchdowns. The second of which he capped off with a very awkward somersault into the end zone; ala Reggie Bush. Bush has a little bit more athleticism.

A side note on Bowens v Brees; Drew Brees’ wife gave birth earlier in the week to a baby boy they named Bowen. Weird.

The Britt’s are invading. Kenny Britt helped the Titans manhandle the Eagles Sunday with seven catches for 225 yards and three touchdowns. The Titans took away the wind from the Eagles in the fourth quarter with five unanswered scoring drives including three touchdowns.

The Dynamic Diva Duo and the Bengals visited the Falcons Sunday, but it was another receiver who out shined the gasbag wide outs from Cincinnati. Roddy White made 11 grabs for 201 yards and two touchdowns. Meanwhile Carson Palmer finally looked impressive throwing for 412 yards and three touch downs in a losing effort.

The Chargers continue to do their best impression of the Cowboys. They outgained the Patriots 363 yards to 179, but had 4 turnovers in the first half. San Diego was unable to overcome their mistakes falling to the Patriots by three points at home. The Chargers have turned the ball over 18 times so far this season; they only had 17 all of last season.

Next week we get to look forward to that game every fan circles on the schedule when it is released. This season’s installment of the Wembley Stadium Bowl will feature the Broncos and the 49ers. Anytime you have two teams that are a combined 3-11 it’s just compelling football. Place that game in London and it… Never mind there’s no way to spin this little slice of crap. If the Niners lose though look out for some players to not make the plane ride home.

The NFC is officially on notice; while they have four teams with two losses at the top of the conference, the AFC has three teams with one loss and five teams with two losses. The teams that sit atop the NFC right now are the Falcons (playing respectable ball), the Giants (who look good against the girls teams), Tampa Bay (they will burn out) and Seattle (probably win the West). Put those teams up against the likes of say: The Jets, Patriots, Steelers, Ravens, the entire AFC South and who do you think looks like a stronger conference? Come the end of the season there’s going to be a serious log jam of NFC teams with 8-8 records trying to vie for playoff spots. It’s not going to matter; at this point no one will win against the very physical AFC.

So long folks, sorry for all the stats.

Category: NFL
 
 
 
 
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