Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Week 7 Postmortem

I had the distinct displeasure of having a single choice of late NFL games to watch. It was Jets at Raiders. And, yes, it was as awful as it sounds. During the first quarter alone there were approximately 14 penalties for 150 yards.

Seriously, there was a flag on every play on one team or another for 5 straight plays during a Raiders drive. In fact, the Raiders had scored a touchdown (their first in 55 games, apparently) only to have it nullified by an offensive holding call. Then they had to rekick a field goal attempt because of some other penalty. It was the worst stretch of football I have seen all year.

And Al Davis thought Lane Kiffin was the problem?

What I don’t understand is why that was the only game I was given the chance to watch. Fox was televising bull riding (no, really, they were) after their first game was over. Why couldn’t I have watched a late game on Fox, too? The Pats weren’t playing until last night, so home territory wasn’t an issue.

As I so often say; what the fuck?

Of course, I wound up watching most of the game, anyway. Favre looked like his old self in that he kept throwing into triple coverage and having the ball knocked away. Either that or the Raiders defense is much better than I was led to believe.

No, that wasn’t it. The Jets looked awful. It says a lot that the Raiders looked like a shit team and still won the game.

I need to point out that for the second week in a row a head coach tried to ice the kicker by calling a last second time out only to screw his own team over. I thought we were past this? Did we learn nothing from the failures that involve this ridiculous aspect of the game? The Raiders coach called a time out just before the snap, only the whistles didn’t blow in time and the ball was put in play. The attempt missed and the Oakland crowd is celebrating like the game is over before they learn their own coach called a timeout a split second before. So, the Jets get another try and lo and behold, Jay Feeley nails the second try and sends the game into overtime.

Listen, coaches, this game isn’t that difficult. Stop trying to show off and just let things play out. Calling a last second timeout isn’t a good coaching move. It’s a douchebag move and even your own fans hate you for it. Stop being dicks.

Onto other thoughts.

- I saw two different commercials starring LaDainian Tomlinson where he makes amazing leaps and hurdles over defenders. One was for Cambell’s soup and the other was for Vizio or some other television maker and it’s prompting me to ask this question: Has Tomlinson gained more yards and scored more touchdowns during commercials than during actual games he’s played?

- I watched a lot of the game last night and I’m not that excited for Cassel’s so called ‘stellar’ night. First of all, it certainly looked like the coaching staff dumbed down a lot of the plays to make it easier for Cassel to read the defense.

Second, the Denver defense blows and blows hard. And still he didn’t throw over 200 yards.

Third, if you watch Cassel you’ll notice he doesn’t look around. If the play is set for a specific receiver he watches that receiver until he’s either open or the defense sacks him. He doesn’t ‘check off’ other options. You don’t see his head turn to other sides of the field or even have him look off the defense. Maybe he just needs to learn this over time, but it’s not encouraging at all.

- Name to remember for next year’s fantasy draft: Josh Morgan

- Now that the bye weeks are almost over for my fantasy team, here are my starting running backs for the rest of the season: Brian Westbrook (or Correll Buckhalter, if Westbrook is hurt), Willis McGahee (who finally looked healthy against the Dolphins) and either Edgerrin James or Tim Hightower. I actually like Hightower better after watching him against the Cowboys. Guy is strong and lightning fast. Can’t see how the Cardinals keep him down much longer.

- Has there been a more schizophrenic team than the Colts? They light up the Ravens defense, then fizzle out against a depleted Packers. Don’t get this team at all. Do they suck or are they just figuring things out?

- The Bengals and Lions, on the other hand I totally get. They really do suck. Royally suck. Historically suck. Kind of amazing we can’t lump the Rams in here after the last two weeks, don’t you think?

- Remember when a Vikings – Bears contest would pit two of the league’s top defenses against each other? Sunday’s score: Bears 48 – Vikings 41.

- Four reasons I got my ass kicked in fantasy football this past weekend:

1: Drew Brees not throwing for 300 yards or a touchdown for the first time all year

2: Steve Smith putting up 120 yards and a TD against me

3: Chris Johnson putting up 168 yards and a TD against me

4: Dominic Rhodes running for 2 TDs and 70 something yards because Addai was suddenly scratched from the game.

- My how the mighty have fallen. I just received an email from my fantasy league that Donovan McNabb is being offered for Tomlinson. My first thought was the guy should keep McNabb.

- Despite getting blown out in Arizona, I’m still very impressed with Buffalo. Not spectacular, but solid team all around.

- I'm thoroughly enjoying the Dallas meltdown and know I’m not the only one.

- Mike Nolan was fired yesterday, but don’t mistake this for another spur of the moment move. Nolan was given ample opportunity to prove his worth and the team never improved under his watch. Now Mike Singletary (his eyes still haunt me and every other Patriot fan) takes over and all the media pundits are praising his promotion. ‘He’s just what this team needs’ or ‘This is a great move!’

If Singletary doesn’t improve the team over the next season and a half, will they still think this was a great move?

Stay tuned.

Today’s distraction: Jose Canseco is making one last ditch attempt to stay in the limelight by apologizing for naming names in his steroid book ‘Juiced’. Canseco says ‘I never realized this was going to blow up and hurt so many people.’

Yeah, who would have thought mentioning all those world famous players and even suggesting A-Rod was using without any proof would cause problems? He thought people would just shrug and say ‘big deal’?

No word on when his ‘rehab’ stint begins, but rest assured it will be after the spotlight dims in a week or two.


French said...

I'm split on how I feel about Cassel. He has a strong arm and throws a pretty deep ball, but he doesn't know his receivers well enough yet and he can't read coverages.

He's a giant dude but he's so bad in the pocket when there's just the slightest bit of pressure. He flushes out before it's necessary and most of the time, all he needs to do it step up into the front of the pocket and he'll be able to make those deeper, precision throws to great route runners like Welker. There used to be a guy there in New England who was so good in the pocket...can't remember his name. Tom Something?

You mentioned his tendency to telegraph throws, which leads to picks and generally poor play. I still hold out high hope that over time, he will learn this. He hadn't started a game in like 8 years, so he's going to evolve eventually.

I don't know what to think. Last night's game is no indication of anything because Denver's D is so bad...soooo bad. Our third and fourth string backs tore it up, Cassel completed 75% of passes and was still sacked 6 times. Next week might not be any better, as the Rams give up almost 30 pts per game...but who knows, Haslett has them going in the right direction.

BeachBum said...

Steve Young mentioned all the sacks the Pats have given up before last night's game and made it seem like it was the fault of the offensive line.

What he never mentioned is that Cassel - for the most part - is getting the same amount of time Brady always got, but just can't make the reads as quickly. Therefore he's holding the ball longer and giving opposing defenses another 2-3 seconds to get their paws on him.

Typical ex-QB blaming the no names on the line.

A Tribute: deer a train and basketball said...

Jose Canseco is also fighting Danny Bonaduce in celebrity boxing, what a fuckin tool.

Anonymous said...

Don't even get me started on game selection for each time slot of NFL games. Since I live in Minnesota, the powers that be usually decide that I would rather watch any two NFC North teams play to a 10-7 final score as opposed to a game in which at least one of the teams has actually approached a .500 record for the season. God help them if I ever find out who makes these decisions.