Tag Archives: Andy Dalton

The Taming Of The Suh

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I really like Ndamukong Suh. He’s a genuine guy, soft-spoken, humble in real life and an all-around good guy.

But to steal a phrase from The Dave Chappelle Show, Ndamukong Suh is ****** up!

(side note: I think there many phrases you can take from the Chappelle Show and apply them to real life, that’s why it’s one of my top 5 comedy shows ever. Season two especially.)

Suh’s latest run in with the moral law of the NFL will land him on the suspended list and will once again raise questions as to what kind of player he actually is.

Suh has slowly gained a reputation of being a dirty player after his vicious take downs of Jake Delhomme, Jay Cutler and Andy Dalton. However, each time people such as myself have given him the benefit of the doubt by saying he just plays the game the way way it should be played.

Suh has an incredible motor. In just two years he has established himself as one of the top 5 defensive linemen in the game because if that relentlessness.

With that being said, that motor is about to land him on the suspension list.

Suh’s latest act is absolutely indefensible. During Thursday’s thanksgiving day game versus Green Bay Suh got tangled up with Packers offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith and proceeded to mush his head into the concrete twice then as he was getting up he stomped on Smith’s arm. Suh was then ejected and was seen pleading his case to coach Jim Schwartz and the umpires.

As if that weren’t enough there was his poor excuse of an apology after the game where he seemed more resentful to being ejected than remorseful for his actions.

C’mon son! What are you doing?

I can’t defend Suh’s latest actions, infant I’ll take it a step further, Ndamukong Suh is a dirty player.

Slamming down QB’s and inflicting pain on running backs is your job so you get a pass on that. However, once you start trying to purposefully hurt players on the field with non football tactics then you cross that line of tough and dirty. Suh is now on the other side of that line.

The crazy part is Suh still believes that he’s innocent even after watching replays over and over again of him stomping on another man’s arm.

Commissioner Roger Goodell would be right to sit him down for two games especially after Suh volunteered to to speak with the commish after his recent run ins.

Also more than anything Suh needs to learn to control the rage that he has on the field of play. That same rage that makes him great is changing a lot of people’s opinions about him and he has to find a happy medium that allows him to still be dominate without being dirty.

Suh is at a turning point very early in his career he can either clean his act up and continue to be a mister of a force in the middle of the Lions front line, or he can keep playing the way he does and continue to lose respect throughout the league.

I like the guy a lot, but if Ndamukong Suh doesn’t learn to control himself he’ll have a very light wallet and a target on his body whenever offensive linemen see him.

Let’s hope his impending suspension will be a lesson well learned instead of the beginning of a bad trend.

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The Ultimate Tim Tebow Breakdown

Tebow just keeps on winning.

In hip-hop culture one of the first things that is embedded in your brain is that haters never prosper. No one likes a hater, haters are despised. Hating on the status and appearance of others is a sin in the bible of hip-hop, and if you are marked as a hater it tarnishes your reputation wherever you go and with whatever you do.

The problem with that is that there is a long standing tradition in hip-hop of what’s known as keeping it real. Being real with yourself and your feelings at all times is a must and most rappers and followers of the culture try their best to follow  suit without looking like fools… or haters.

Rapper Common said it best in his song “The 6th Sense,” “if I don’t like it, I don’t like it, that don’t mean that I’m hating.” Sometimes the lines of keeping it real and being a hater are so paper thin that the wrong interpretation of a topic can lead you in either direction. There’s no such thing as debatable arguments in hip-hop either you’re a hater or you’re not. When you say what’s on your mind at all times you risk crossing that line of hater/ truth teller and leave yourself open to criticism.

With that in mind, I present to you Tim Tebow.

I’m sick of Tim Tebow. I think Tim Tebow is one of the worst NFL QB’s that has ever graced the planes of any stadium. He’s the most overrated, overhyped player in my lifetime that gets too much attention, gets too many passes for being mediocre and is a product of a machine that wants to make him the next big thing even though Stevie Wonder can see that he isn’t a good QB…

But he wins games.

I've been sick of Tebow since he was at Florida.

And that right there is the most frustrating part about any argument that has ever involved in Tebow, he just wins.

Scouts know that he’s bad, his own coach John Fox came out this week and said his team would be “screwed” if they ran a regular offense. But somehow in this shotgun option style offense (keep in mind the option is a college based offense that has never worked until this month somehow) Tebow has a better record than Josh Freeman, Matt Ryan, Sam Bradford, Mike Vick, Philip Rivers and Cam Newton.

But if you were starting an NFL franchise and needed a QB and those were the guys available, Tebow would be the last guy taken right? This is why every Tebow result is so frustrating for anyone to argue.

Take last night’s game for example. Tebow before the last drive had 68 passing yards and was 6-15 for the game. He consistently overthrew receivers, took too long with his decisions and couldn’t lead a lobster into a pot of boiling water… then all of a sudden he leads the Broncos on a 95 yard game-winning drive where he scampers into the end zone on a 20 yard touchdown and beats the Jets. His finishing line was 9-20, 108 yards, 68 yards rushing and a TD. Those are not good stats… but he won.

So now when you’re on Twitter, and watching ESPN and listening to First Take with the biggest Tebow slopper of them all Skip Bayless you have to sit back and take all of the Tebow loving because he won again, even though 95% of the league would take Kyle Orton as a starting QB over Tebow.

There are so many reasons as to why I loathe the topic of Tim Tebow and it’s a combination of football, perception and media hype.

First off is the football aspect. To me Tim Tebow gets way too much credit for his passion, and leadership ability. Yeah he wins, but it aint all him by any means. At Florida the defense lead by Brandon Spikes deserved a lot of credit for shutting down SEC offenses and putting fear in to most QB’s eyes. Yet all you saw was Tebow’s manic behavior of screaming at his teammates, running into huddles and jumping up and down waving his arms in the air and urging the crowd behind to get fired up.

The guy next to Tebow is the better QB.

It’s as if Tebow was the measuring stick for every QB at the time in college football. So leadership is based on hollering and screaming until your face is red. I don’t think that works for most leaders, ask John Wooden who was a stoic, calm figure that was a bigger winner than Tebow ever will be. Too far back? How about the QB that came before him Chris Leak?

Leak was just as talented and as good of a leader as Tebow was but never gets any credit for his skill. People always say that Tebow led Florida to two national championships at Florida… um, he was a part of two titles, Leak led Florida to the first one, Tebow just did a jump pass or two. Yet there is never discussion of how Leak led Florida to the beginning of the SEC’s dominant national title run, never talk of how he overcame massive pressure from Florida fans and the media to win offensive MVP against Ohio State in the 2007 title game, it all goes back to Tebow.

As a football fan what incenses me is how Tebow has gotten to the NFL and stayed while just as accomplished QB’s who have won just has much weren’t even given a chance to make it as quarterbacks. I loved Pat White at West Virginia, he ran a similar offense at WVU as Tebow did at Florida but was more accurate, had a better arm and better skills as a QB. But when it came time to get to the league he was only a ‘wildcat” QB and wasn’t given a proper chance to show his skill and is now out of the league.

I think you know where this leads to now when I just name dropped two accomplished black QB’s as opposed to a white one. If you don’t think race has anything to do with this than you need to find Jesus (and no his name isn’t Tebow though some Broncos would like to think differently).

Tim Tebow is the all-American, boy next door, wholesome kid that people have been waiting on for years. I’m not knocking Tebow on his faith, his way of life or him as a person; I’m sure that he’s a great person to meet and talk to and get to know. But it’s as if Tebow is the only religious, god fearing, humble guy on the planet.

There was never talk of how religious A.C. Green was during his time in the NBA. Green was a devout Christian who was notorious for being a virgin long into his NBA career and in his 30’s. We never celebrated him in the way we do Tebow now. Or how about Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers? Polamalu is a great family man who his very religious, hell two weeks ago the guy got fined by the NFL for calling his wife on the sidelines to let her know that he was ok after getting a concussion because he knew she was worried about him.

In case you were wondering he led Florida to the title 5 years ago, not Tebow.

But we don’t celebrate their pledge to being great family men and close with God. To the eye Tim Tebow is God. Tebow and his faith and the way he is constantly gets shoved into our face as if to say that we should be like Tebow. Unfortunately Tebow’s style of religious behavior isn’t for everyone. Some, such as myself, like to keep our faith to ourselves and be mindful of others as to not offend them. There is Lenten passage that we read every year at my church from Matthew 6:5:

“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth; they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

In other words let Tebow be boastful of his faith, the rest of us will do it in our own corners. Lots of pro athletes are super religious and follow their faith to the full extent of the word of God. However, it’s not all out to be put on display for the world to see and they like it like that. Todd Heap is a former Baltimore Raven and a Mormon and he is a strict Mormon. I waited on the guy several times during my days of waiting tables at PF Changs he doesn’t drink, is faithful to his wife and is a good guy. However, you never hear anything from him about his faith because that’s how he chooses to be.

Truth is that we should probably live more like Tebow, but there is this thing called free will where we want to live how we want to. That’s life, we have different opinions of how things should be done and for a lot of us, myself included Tebow’s way aint for me.

But to be fair to Tebow this isn’t exactly all of his doing. There was a point in college where me and some buddies invented the “Tebow Drinking Game,” it goes like this: watch College Gameday or a Florida game and whenever anyone says Tebow or Jesus, drink (how catholic of me I know). Let’s just say we got drunk long before Lee Corso put on the head gear or Florida started the second half.

More than anything the Media is the reason that Tebow is as big of a machine as he is. ESPN, writers, corporate America push this guy on us so much that after a while you can’t help but either love or hate the guy.

Why do you think Broncos fans were booing Kyle Orton so badly even though the misfortunes of their franchise weren’t his fault? Orton got such a raw deal in all of this because truthfully Orton is the best QB on that team. He’s more accurate, better at handling an offense and it shows in the numbers. However, once Tebow got into the last three games of last year it was over. Tebow wasn’t impressive at all except for in spurts but Broncos fans caught Gator fever and soon began calling his name and the media followed.

During the preseason there were more media members at Tebow’s locker than at Orton’s and Orton was named the starter. Fans cheered every move Tebow made and became driven to make him their QB. Fans were planning on buying a billboard urging Coach John Fox to bench Orton and start Tebow. Thanks ESPN thanks a lot.

Tebow is a flavor of the month that has last 6 years and now has endorsements. The guy appeared in three games last year and before the season started had a Nike deal and a Jockey contract, really?

Even sponsors love Tim Tebow.

This is just how it goes, advertisers and media members find someone to gravitate towards and when they find him they put him on a pedestal and when they do they shove him down your throat until you can’t take it and begin to make fun of him.

They did it with Peyton Manning awhile ago. There wasn’t a time where you could turn on your TV and not see Manning at any time of the day. He was in every commercial possible selling TV’s, phones, Direct TV, anything. The difference between Manning and Tebow is that Manning has that charisma for it all so seeing him so much didn’t really matter because he was a cool guy. With Tebow there has been a history of hearing about him so much that even though we don’t see him as much as Manning when we do its nauseating.

A month ago against the Lions a Denver newspaper billed the game as Good vs. Evil, guess who was the good? Afterwards Ndamukong Suh said tongue in cheek “evil won.” That’s why people hate Tebow. The city of Detroit has gone through more hardship than any other city in the U.S., the Lions are good once again and a great story to rally around, but they play Tebow its good vs. Evil… gimme a break.

I think that is where my disdain for Tebow mostly comes from. The media has built him up so much that his personality and the way that he is has overshadowed one very important thing when it comes to his actual job on the field…

HE’S A TERRIBLE QUARTERBACK!!!

Never mind that the guy is completing less than 50% of his passes, never mind that he can’t run a professional offense and that his coach has owned up to that, never mind that the reason that Denver is back in the AFC West race is because of a rejuvenated defense led by Von Miller who owned that Jets game last night, never mind all of that, it’s all about the good of Tim Tebow.

Tim Tebow can get away with going 2-8 in an NFL and winning, he can get away with getting hammered 45-10 by a much better team in the Lions, he will get a pass from Bayless because he doesn’t have the proper weapons around him to throw the ball or hasn’t been given a chance to show his stuff. Pat White wasn’t given a chance, Jimmy Clausen didn’t have any weapons around him last year, we’ve seen Tebow for 8 games in full action and he is trash.

Mechanically he is a mess. He looks uncomfortable in the pocket, can’t run plays properly, takes too long on his delivery and is pathetically inaccurate…

But… he… wins… football… games.

As bad as he is Tebow has that clutch gene. We can say the Miami win was given to him because Miami played prevent defense in the last 5 minutes, but he won. We can say that Kansas City isn’t fully healthy and didn’t have the guys on the field they needed to win, but he won. We can say the Jets are trash (which, they really are and there might be some need to reconsider Mark Sanchez as an NFL QB), but he won.

After last night who would you rather have as your QB?

So until he losses and losses consistently we will have to hear about him more than Cam Newton who is having an amazing season or Andy Dalton who has exceeded all expectations of him or Christian Ponder who looks like the real deal at QB because Tim Tebow is winning more than all of them.

Ever since Tebow was inserted as the Denver Broncos starting QB they have gone from a 1-4 lottery team to a 5-5 team with a shot at winning the AFC West and making the playoffs. Most of the credit should go to the defense or the running game but instead it falls into the hands of Tim Tebow. If they make the playoffs the credit will go to Tebow even though we know he is the lowest rated QB in the league that cant complete a pass.

But he’s a winner and that stat shines brighter than any other on his resume.

Being a hater and keeping it real is a hard line to toe, with Tim Tebow the line is microscopic.

I hate the Tebow coverage, I hate the Tebow machine, I hate the fact that I’ll have to hear about him for a few more weeks, I hate the fact that he’s a bad QB that somehow wins games. But I cant hate the guy for being who he is and getting the job done on the field. I can’t be any more real than that.


The Price Is Wrong For Palmer

The Raiders paid a hefty price for Carson Palmer.

Let me tell you bad of an idea it is that the Oakland Raiders gave up so much for Carson Palmer:

First of all look at Carson Palmer’s production last year. he threw for over 4000 yards again but most of it came in garbage time as the Cincinnati Bengals limped to a 4-12 record and a massive overhaul in the offseason. Palmer was deceptively horrible as he consistently overthrew receivers, threw horrible interceptions and killed more Bengals drives then I can remember. People want to blame Chad Ochocinco for all of the issues in Cinci last year but it’s not his fault that Palmer couldn’t hit him, Terrell Owens, Jermaine Gresham, Jordan Shipley or any of their 89 talented receivers at all.

Palmer should’ve taken most of the fall for that season because it was all on his shoulders. Ever since his knee injury in the playoffs against the Steelers years ago Palmer hasn’t been the same QB. Maybe he’s scared to get hit but the simple fact is that he wasn’t losing accuracy and arm strength and couldn’t get the ball up the field at all.

Speaking of blame here’s reason number two; Palmer’s attitude towards the Bengals was a joke. People kept making excuses for Palmer’s behavior saying that it was because Bengals ownership is extremely cheap (which is a fact) and that they didn’t want to build a winner. Reality is that the Bengals were building something and all of Palmer’s backers didn’t want to see it.

The team had just come off of a AFC North title and added players through the draft and gave Palmer more weapons than you could imagine. It was up to Palmer to make it work and he didn’t. instead of bearing down and going at it again he whined, complained moaned and wanted out of Cinci. He told ownership that he would rather retire than play another game in Cinci and bragged that he had $80 million in the bank to work with.

So Bengals Owner Mike Brown did what most GM’s should do in this situation, he told Palmer to stay home, drafted Andy Dalton and moved forward.

(side note: let’s give props to Mike Brown for not punking out to a player’s demands. Brown isn’t the most liked guy in Southern Ohio but he showed gumption in pressing ahead and not giving in to Palmer’s demands and did what was right for the team. what he got was a steal of a deal and more insurance for the Bengals future as the team looks like it’s getting better by the week.)

Andy Dalton is doing just fine in Palmer's place in Cinci.

That brings us to point three; do you see the Bengals without Palmer in the locker room? When the Colts lost Peyton Manning they fell flat on their face and haven’t gotten up since. The Bengals have thrived with Dalton who looks like the real deal and A.J. Green who is a beast of a wide receiver and will only get better. If Palmer is such an elite QB then why is a his now former team, who were supposed to be terrible, 4-2 and talking about the playoffs?

There have been whispers about how the locker room is much more peaceful and fun without Palmer (or Ochocinco) in it. is this really a guy you want to carry your team to the playoffs.

The final point is this; the Raiders gave the Bengals 2 possible first round picks in this year and next year’s draft to get Palmer. That’s insane.

No other team in their right mind would pay that much for a QB especially now that draft picks are much cheaper and when you look at the fact that scouts all say that Palmer isn’t the same QB as he was before 2005.

I don’t care how good of a relationship Palmer has with head coach Hue Jackson, or the fact that you needed a QB, the price was too high for a QB that is not elite, has arm and accuracy issues, and hasn’t played a game all year long.

Also think about his, you gave up a 3rd round pick in the supplemental draft to get Terrell Pryor and make him your QB of the future. That’s three picks you handed off for QB’s and one might never see the light of day in Oakland. if the Palmer deal doesn’t work then the Raiders just killed themselves for two years in the draft and could fall right back to the 5 or 4 win plateau in no time.

This experiment gets started this weekend as Palmer will get his first start of the season against the suddenly awoken Kansas City Chiefs. Palmer will have to get to know his receivers quickly and get the offense down just as quick.

If he does and the Raiders are successful then forget I ever wrote this blog…

But if he doesn’t then the Raiders will pay dearly, and Mike Brown will reap the rewards of it.


Enjoy The NFL Season, Because I Won’t

It's going to be a long season for my Giants.

So football’s back… woo-hoo!!! But I don’t care really.

Yeah I’m bitter about my Giants I can’t lie, that’s what happens when you have your top defensive end act salty over not getting a new deal, you lose half of your team to injury in the preseason (its and exaggeration but losing 3 DB’s including your best one Terrell Thomas, your starting middle linebacker, his backup is not fun) and your division rival just bought half of the NFL including your best receiver. Also the fact that your GM just stood there and did nothing about any of this. Not that I’m salty or anything.

The Eagles offseason has put them ahead of the pack as the team to beat in the NFC and the NFL as well. Their acquisitions including Nmandi Asomugha, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Ronnie Brown and Jason Babin help to strengthen a team that won 10 games last year and could have them in prime position to knock over the defending champion Packers.

What you may have forgotten about the Packers is that they won the title last year with a depleted unit as well. starting running back Ryan Grant, tight end Jermichael Finley as well as several others suffered season ending injuries early in season and jeopardized the Packers playoff chances. Aaron Rodgers suffered two concussion last year as well and misses a game due to his injury. Yet they overcame those injuries to steamroll their way to the playoffs and eventually a Super Bowl crown. Now with everyone back healthy how can they not be primed for a second straight run?

That last paragraph gives me hope for the Giants but not really. Especially when the team that we share a stadium with is getting all of the buzz in the city of New York. Whether its Rex Ryan’s mouth, Mark Sanchez on GQ, or obtaining Plaxico Buress the Jets have remained the talk of football in New York and with good reasoning. The Jets have made two straight AFC title games under Ryan and are on the cusp of finally making it to Super Bowl this year… that is if they can’t beat the Patriots.

Nmandi Asomugha was one of Philly's many big splashes.

The Patriots did some retooling themselves after their 28-21 loss to the Jets in the playoffs this past January. They rescued Chad Ochocinco and Albert Haynesworth from poor situations in Cincinnati and Washington and Bill Belichick is working them into his system and despite some early concerns about their inability to learn the schemes you know both will be ready and that the Patriots, and Tom Brady will be in line at the top of the heap of the AFC.

So who else has a shot at Super Bowl 46 this year? who’s going to be fun to watch? Who’s not worth our time and who is dead in the water?… well I think I just named the basis for my blog today now didn’t I?

AFC

DON’T EVEN BOTHER WATCHING

Cincinnati Bengals: Andy Dalton and AJ Green could hook up to be a great combo in this league… just not this year. Dalton has targets in Green, Jordan Shipley and Jermaine Greshiam but the Bengals have no defense to speak of and little depth.

(Side Note: how does Marvin Lewis still have a job? the Bengals have perennially underachieved under him and have had a string of poor behavior from their players. Yet he’s still there without an inkling of heat underneath his seat. Maybe Mike Brown is cheap but he can’t be stupid. If Lewis doesn’t get it done this year or next he’s got to go… right?)

Jacksonville Jaguars: you get on this list for firing your QB 5 days before the opener. That and having no real receivers to speak of after Mike Sims-Walker left for St. Louis and very little on defense. Hi Jack Del Rio, welcome to the hot seat.

Buffalo Bills: name me three Buffalo Bills… don’t worry I’ll wait.

DEAD IN THE WATER

Miami Dolphins: Reggie Bush looks like a new man, Cameron Wake is a top 10 defensive end in the league and the tandem of Vontae Davis and Sean Smith are one of the best in the league at defensive back. So why are they on this list? Chad Henne is their starting QB… no need to elaborate, let’s move on.

Tennessee Titans: Matt Hasselback is a good replacement until Jake Locker is ready to take the reins and Chris Johnson is in the fold again after signing a huge extension. Yet in a division with the Colts and Texans who made strides to get better in terms of depth , the Titans have a ways to go to catch up.

TRENDING UP

Denver Broncos: I have and always will like Kyle Orton. He is a capable starting QB with enough sense to lead a team to the playoffs. John Fox has made a lot of smart decision this offseason when it came to figuring out a better defensive scheme to make that poor unit better but his best decision was make Orton the starter. Tim Tebow as much as the fans love him is nowhere near ready to be on the field as an NFL starter. Hell Brady Quinn looked better than him this preseason… BRADY QUINN! As much as the fans were calling for Tebow and that John Elway loves him they all need to wake the heck up. Tebow Is not a starting QB in the NFL right now, if you start him you hurt your teams chances at making the playoffs and the Broncos can become a player if their defense holds up.

This is not how the Colts envisioned seeing Peyton Manning.

Oakland Raiders: Yep you’re reading that right. Even with the loss of Asomuha on defense the Raiders have more than enough up front to be scary led by Richard Seymour. My biggest concern with them is if they can score enough points. They have a ton of speed with Jacoby Ford, Darrius Heyward-Bey, and Darren McFadden but can it be utilized by any of their QB’s?

Cleveland Browns: they’re not ready to compete this year, but I have a feeling that Colt McCoy and Joe Haden will give teams fits on both ends of the ball. I know Cleveland is wary about expectations but 9-7 isn’t crazy to me.

THEY CAN GO EITHER WAY

Indianapolis Colts: this isn’t just because Peyton Manning will miss the time due to his neck injury it’s because I don’t trust their wide receivers to stay healthy, their secondary to be effective and their front 7 to be consistent. However, if Manning does come back slinging it like he does then none of this will matter.

Kansas City Chiefs: this team would be a contender if someone other than Matt Cassel was their QB. He’s not bad by any means but I think he inhibits them offensively. As for the defense… hey Glenn Dorsey… DO SOMETHING!!!

San Diego Chargers: they’re in good hands with Philip Rivers but consistency on offense worries me. Also can Shaun Phillips make enough plays on defense to make them forget about Shawne Merriman?

EITHER GET IT DONE OR BE DONE

Houston Texans: If they don’t breakthrough this year then it’ll never happen. Peyton’s injured, the Titans and Jags are rebuilding and the Texans stand on the cusp of a divisional title if they can actually man up in big games (hi, Matt Schaub). With Wade Phillips running the defense they should improve and actually be marginally good against the pass. But it really it comes down to this; we’ve been saying now for the last two seasons that this is the year for the Texans… I’m not saying it. Either get it done or start over.

THE ONLY FOUR THAT MATTER

Baltimore Ravens: the only thing that worries me about them is Joe Flacco. After last postseason in Pittsburgh Flacco looks frightened of the moment to me and that could be an issue going down the stretch. Does he have the fortitude to lead the Ravens in late game situations or is he just an average QB? This year we’ll find out.

New York jets: no excuse not to make it all the way this year. they have the experience, the players and the coaching, now they’ve got to get over the hump.

Pittsburgh Steelers: so, you think Dan Rooney is happy that this offseason is over? James Harrison, Hines Ward and Rashard Mendenhall gave him heartburn with their off the field issues and left a stain on the Steeler logo. Well now that it’s over and football is all that matters the focus is there and Mike Tomlin won’t let it slip. The league’s best defense can lead the Steelers back to the promise land and make everyone forget about a forgettable offseason.

New England Patriots: Tom Brady and Bill Belichick after a postseason loss to a divisional rival and all offseason to think about it? yeah, get scared.

NFC

CHANGE THE CHANNEL

Washington Redskins: their starter is Rex Grossman, they have no one to run the ball, and they have no real secondary… Washington is counting the days until the Capitals are back.

Good luck with this Washington.

San Francisco 49ers: Alex Smith is still their QB…

THERE’S A CHANCE BUT NOT A GOOD ONE

New York Giants: no depth, no chance. Also… STOP TURNING THE DAMN BALL OVER ALL OF YOU!!!!!!

Carolina Panthers: very young, very raw, but very talented. Give them time to gel and check back next year or the year after.

Minnesota Vikings: Donovan McNabb’s number one receiver is Percy Harvin, Jared Allen is coming off of a poor season and needs a bounce back badly. Sounds like it’ll be a heavy dose of Adrian Peterson this year.

UMMM… I COULDN’T EVEN TELL YOU

Dallas Cowboys: Tony Romo is in a make or break year for his career. If he can’t get to the playoffs this year and go deep then the Cowboys will look for a new QB to lead the team in 2012. The problem is does he have everything he needs to succeed around him. who’s the team’s number one running back? Can Dez Bryant step his game up and compliment Miles Austin on the outside? Can their secondary stop anybody? Will Jason Garrett strangle Mike Jenkins by year’s end? I would hate to be in Romo’s position right now.

Arizona Cardinals: Now we get to see what the big deal is with Kevin Kolb. If he’s all that he’s cracked up to be then the Cardinals will contend. If not then Ken Whisenhunt will be feeling a little fire under his seat.

Seattle Seahawks: all of these offseason moves to improve your offense and the best you can do at QB is Tavaris Jackson? Maybe they should’ve resigned Hasselback.

YOU SHOULD BE AFRAID… VERY AFRAID

Detroit Lions: if Matt Stafford can stay healthy… IF… then look out. This is everyone’s chic pick to be the breakout team in the NFL and it’s not hard to see why. The main reason is Ndamukong Suh who is becoming the best defensive player in the NFL leading a defensive line that once it gets Nick Fairley back will be one of the best in the game. However, it comes back to Stafford. He has shown in limited action that he can be a really good QB and can put lots of points on the board with Calvin Johnson. His health decides their season; if he’s healthy then they’re in the playoffs, if not… wait until next year.

St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford almost lead them to the playoffs throwing to Danny Amendola… the defense has been together for a solid three years under Steve Spagnuolo’s complicated scheme and is getting it down to a science… the other three teams in the division are trying to figure themselves out in all areas while the Rams are set in there’s… if they don’t win the NFC West then it’ll be a huge disappointment.

It's now or never for Houston.

(Side note 2: remember the 2009 NFL Draft where Aaron Curry was the next great NFL linebacker, Brian Cushing was a stud, Rey Maualuga was a huge playmaker in the making and James Laurinaitis had concerns that he wasn’t fast enough to be an effective NFL linebacker? Guess who has become the best young middle linebacker in the league? Yep the slow kid from Ohio State who won two Butkis Awards in college. You know I wonder if scouts actually watch college games sometimes.)

THE ENIGMA

Chicago Bears: Is the defense set? Yes. Is Jay Cutler mentally ready to lead this team after the controversy from the NFC title game? I don’t know. Cutler has always been mercurial and hasn’t seemed like the greatest leader in the world but it’ll tested more than ever this year. he has to have a strong year under center and make very few mistakes and do so without a clear cut number one receiver, no respectable tight end and an agitated Matt Forte. If he can keep it all in line then the memory of him on the sidelines while his team struggles for yardage in the biggest game of the year will be a memory.

THE FIGHT TO THE DEATH FOR THE PLAYOFFS

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Josh Freeman, Josh Freeman, Josh Freeman… oh and LeGarrette Blount, Mike Williams and a revamped defense looking to bring back the Warren Sapp days. Their out to prove that last year was not a fluke… and they will.

New Orleans Saints: they couldn’t get over the Super Bowl hangover until it was too late. Plus the fact that they lost to 7-9 Seattle in the playoffs still hurts. Expect them to come out lighting it up from day one with nothing but a Super Bowl on their minds.

Atlanta Falcons: Hi Matt Ryan, welcome to Alex Ovechkin’s world. You play for one of the best teams in the league and you have matched all of your hype except in one area… you can’t get it done in the playoffs. You’ve been twice and gotten beaten up both times. Last year you ran into a smoldering hot Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay and you couldn’t keep up with them. Well guess what Matty Ice, now you have an issue. You’re in your 4th year in the league and are considered an elite QB, so guess what were all expecting you to do now? that’s right, win when it matters. You can win all of the regular season games that you want but if you can’t win the close ones or get to the playoffs and win there then we don’t care. Your mission is to win the NFC South and make a Super Bowl run and nothing less. If you can’t do that then you’ll be sitting next to Ovechkin having a beer and wondering what more do you have to do to make your team elite.

THE CHAMP

Green Bay Packers: Clay Matthews had 17 sacks last year, mostly on a broken leg… he’s healthy now… every QB in the league just got scared.

THE MIAMI HEAT

Philadelphia Eagles: Vince Young said that they were a super team and with the moves that they made how can you deny that claim? Young, Cromartie, Asomugha, Babin, Brown, Steve Smith and a cast of thousands joined the Eagles within the span of two weeks and expectations catapulted the Eagles to the top of the NFC class. Paper does not make a champion, but it does create some fun banter. Can this team finally gain short yardage with Brown and LeSean McCoy? Can the offensive line protect Michael Vick? With the new additions to the secondary will they be able to stop the pass? We won’t know until week 1 and even then we need more proof. The City of Philadelphia has been all about big name acquisitions this year with the Phillies getting Cliff Lee, the Flyers obtaining goalie Ilya Bryzgalov and now the Eagles with, well everyone. Can they make the title game? Sure. But they have to gel first and get all of their parts in order.

Yep we're still here.

Funny enough… I think that they will, but they won’t win. The Eagles vs. The Patriots sounds like a great matchup for Super Bowl 46 and The Patriots sound like a good winner. The Patriots have lost their swagger from previous years and it shows in their games versus the Jets, Steelers and other in previous years. They are still one of the top teams in the league but they needed to get kicked in the rear to get it together. The Jets provided them with that spark last year and it will carry over into this one.

Well I hope the Patriots enjoy their title run, the Jets enjoy contending, the Eagles enjoy the hype and the Packers enjoy their title defense. I won’t enjoy any of it thanks to the gloomy outlook that the Giants are facing this year. Oh well, it could be worse, I could pick the Bengals to win it all again.

AFC EAST- PATRIOTS

AFC NORTH- STEELERS

AFC SOUTH- TEXANS

AFC WEST- CHARGERS

AFC WILDCARDS- JETS, RAVENS

AFC CHAMPIONSHIP- STEELERS VS. PATRIOTS

NFC EAST- EAGLES

NFC NORTH- PACKERS

NFC SOUTH- SAINTS

NFC WEST- RAMS

NFC WILDCARDS- FALCONS, BUCS

NFC CHAMPIONSHIP- EAGLES VS. PACKERS

SUPER BOWL- PATRIOTS VS. EAGLES

MVP- DREW BREES

DPOY- NDAMUKONG SUH

OPOY- BREES

COACH OF THE YEAR- RAHEEM MORRIS

OROY- MARK INGRAM

DROY- PATRICK PETERSON


Choose Your QB Wisely

I've got a bad feeling about Cam Newton

Cam Newton will be the number one overall pick. Ryan Mallett is being touted as the best overall QB in the draft. Jake Locker has teams drooling over his physical prowess. Blaine Gabbert will be the second QB taken in the draft.

This is the worst QB pool in the last ten years of the draft. I’m serious.

If these guys are your answers at QB then I want to know how bad your problems are. Am I the only person that doesn’t think that any of these QB’s will be good at all?

I watched all 4 of these guys in college and I wasn’t impressed with any of them except Newton at times and any fool knows that as physically imposing as Newton is he is not an NFL QB right now.

Newton played in a spread offense that was so simplistic that Newton looked like a fool trying to explain it to Jon Gruden on ESPN recently. His explanation that the offense worked on a number system was foolish. I think Gruden is still in shock over that interview.

(Side note: I used to really like Newton. I heard about all of the concerns of character issues and his ego and the possibility of race playing into his criticism and I felt that he was being treated unfairly as a guy that handled himself very well when talk of his pay for play scandal broke.

Then I watched that interview with Gruden and about a million red flags about Newton popped up. From the way he was dressed, to his smile, to his simple explanations about the offensive schemes at Auburn all made me feel uneasy about Newton. He gave off an overly arrogant air about him that completely overshadowed his physical football abilities and made me think that maybe this football thing wasn’t his best option in life.

I know about the stolen laptop, the pay for play scandal and the fact that he may have disobeyed Gene Chizik in the national title game and went for a touchdown instead of positioning for a field goal. But even more recently there was the ESPN interview with Gruden, his talk of being an icon in sports and this weekend he walked out of a news conference with reporters in New York before the draft and changed his hotel room to be away from the other draftees. This is not a number 1 pick; this is a red flag the size of Jordan Hare Stadium. Just sayin.)

Besides Newton look at the other 3 big names being mentioned as the best quarterbacks in the first round of the draft.

If you take Ryan Mallett then you might be seeing this perplexing face a lot

Gabbert also played in a spread offense at Missouri although it was more predicated on passing than running. He was very efficient in the first 7 games of the season but after the huge upset of Oklahoma he played two horrendous games at Nebraska and Texas Tech and wasn’t impressive in the last three games of the regular season either.

Gabbert seems like he’s piggybacking off of the Sam Bradford train in the sense that Bradford also ran a high-powered big 12 offense from the spread and put up big numbers.

The difference is that Bradford had great awareness all over the field, better accuracy and at least to me has a higher IQ.

Gabbert is decent, but he isn’t going to wow anyone at all at the next level and he wont have the same impact that Bradford had unless he has the right receivers around him.

The same goes for Ryan Mallett. Forget the weed smoking incident and other off the field issues for a minute and just look at the Sugar Bowl game versus Ohio State (which wont count in about 3 months once 27 more violation reports come out about Jim Tressel.).

In that game Mallett was indecisive with the ball, routinely overthrew receivers and seemed to wilt under the pressure of the moment. Sure his receivers didn’t help him out by dropping 8 passes, however Mallett wasn’t on target even when they weren’t dropping them.

He has the physical tools to be a good QB (6’7”, powerful arm) but he’s not mobile and is a bit of a head case.

When talking to a couple of Arkansas fans at the Sugar Bowl you could hear the frustration in their voices with his decision making in games like in New Orleans and against Alabama and Auburn in key situations. Is it something that he can grow out of? Maybe but why risk your franchises immediate future on a guy with character concerns and questions about his onions in late game scenarios.

Finally there’s Jake Locker… I DON’T GET WHY EVERYONE LIKES LOCKER SO EFFING MUCH!!!

He’s big, he’s strong, he can run fast and has a big arm… he’s also injury prone, inaccurate, plays down to his competition and makes bad decisions with the ball.

I still dont get the obsession over Locker.

I saw him in his freshman season when there was a big deal made out of him and granted, he looked good, but he never got better. He never made Washington better.  He got them to one bowl game this past year and went 5-16 for 56 yards. Yeah he ran for 83 but will he really do that in the NFL? No.

This class of “top-ranked” QB’s is troubling. I don’t see one of these guys making a big time impact in the league in the immediate future and could eventually flame out. To me the best QB’s in this draft are available at the end of the first round and into the third round.

How can you not like Andy Dalton over any of these QB’s? Dalton won 42 games at TCU including a Rose Bowl. All he does is win. His arm isn’t as strong as the other QB’s (but neither was Aaron Rodgers’s arm) and he’s got red hair (read the USA Today article about how his red hair is a red flag… no seriously.), but he’s a winner. Locker didn’t win as many games as him, nor did Mallett or Newton for that matter even with the National Championship. Dalton looked adversity in the face time and time again and always came out on top. That’s what I like in a QB, a winner and a guy that can handle pressure.

And if you like an athletic quarterback with who can make the leap from a spread offense to a pro-style offense then why not Colin Kaepernick from Nevada?

Unlike Locker and Newton and Gabbert, Kaepernick got better as each year went by. He’s 6’4” and about 230, which makes him the size of Carson Palmer and he’s got Newton’s elusiveness, Locker’s speed and he’s accurate. He made the jump this year from a 58% passer to a 64% passer. Not bad for a guy that operated out of the “pistol”, which hopefully no NFL offense will ever run.

There’s also Christian Ponder who may have the best combination of arm strength and accuracy of any QB in this draft and Greg McElroy who only won a national title at Alabama and played in more big games in 3 years than any other QB in this draft.

So why waste a top pick on a QB that has as many question marks as the top 4 QB’s in this draft do? Why not take Marcel Daerus first overall and improve your defense or take Patrick Peterson? Why set back yourself 5 years with Newton when 80% of the league wouldn’t touch him with a flagpole?

Quarterback is the most important position in this league and you cant make any mistakes when picking one or else it will set you back years. That’s when tonight’s draft rolls around anyone picking Newton, Gabbert, Mallett or Locker will do themselves a great disservice.


The Little Ten Shows Who They Really Are

Wisconsin and the rest of the Big Ten had a rough New Years Day.

Big Ten, really? What’s so big about it?

The tradition, the “legends and leaders”?

Whatever it is it ain’t the football on the field, at least not after today.

The big should stand for big disappoint. What happened on the field was nothing more than an embarrassment for a conference that has lived off of it’s reputation for way too long.

Lets get this straight right now, the Big Ten can’t compete with any big program on any conference. It’s an overrated conference that can’t hold it’s own with any half decent non-conference opponent.

They can beat the Miami’s, Notre Dame’s and Baylor’s of the world with ease. Those programs are in the process of being rebuilt or built up. However, Alabama, Florida, TCU? Nope, not even close.

The Big Ten was too slow and nowhere near as tough or talented as the bullies who pushed them around all day long.

Michigan got house by Mississippi State in what might have been Rich Rod’s last stand if you can call it that. The 52-14 beatdown was nothing new to the maize and blue whose defense was beaten black and blue to the tune of 485 yards and a career day from QB Chris Relf. Michigan conceded big play after big play and Denard Robinson couldn’t bring them back like he did against UMass… yep UMass.

However you knew that Michigan was suspect from the beginning of the year. Michigan State showed promise, they took it to Wisconsin, won eleven games, an many people thighs that they should’ve been in a BCS game instead of Ohio State. That argument was quickly squelched once the first quarter ended in their game with Alabama.

This was a slaughter, the defending national champs had better competition from a division two opponent than from the Spartans. By the fourth quarter the Tide were bringing in practice squad running backs to score touchdowns or so it seemed. The Spartans had no business on that field. Kirk Cousins was beat up and so was Sparty’s pride. A season that seemed so great was nothing more than a mirage.

Penn State actually had a shot at beating Florida. With a minute left they were in Gator territory threading to score when walk-on QB Matthew McGloin threw a game ending pick to Ahmad Black that he took to the house for a game clinching touchdown.

The Nittany Lions were the best looking Big Ten team on the field as they outgained the Gators. However, not many big-time programs have walk-ons starting at the QB position and McGloin killed the Lions with five picks. The Lions have underachieved this year due to the ineffective play at quarterback and playing a good Florida defense that is tough and can cover lots of ground exposed that by leaps and bounds.

Northwestern gets a break because it lost Dan Persa to Injury in there game against Iowa. However that don’t get too much of a break because they can’t cover any receivers and couldn’t penetrate Texas Tech’s offensive line and Taylor Potts had a field day.

If not for a pick six late the Wildcats would’ve lost by twenty plus points not seven.

The biggest offenders are the Wisconsin Badgers the so called toughest team in the Big Ten. They scored 70 plus points three time this year and have one of the nations best run games with three backs within 1000 yards. They controlled the clock, ran the ball effectively but somehow were outmuscled by TCU’s defensive line.

They were able to get pressure on Scott Tolzien when they needed it and got stops throughout the entire game when it looked like the Badgers offensive line would take over.

Meanwhile even though the TCU offense only held the ball for 23 minutes they blew by the Badgers time and time again. Andy Dalton was able to make big plays with his arm and legs and the TCU receivers routinely got behind the Badger defensive backs and Dalton always found them. The fact that TCU has quicker players at the skill positions than Wisconsin is baffling. What’s also baffling is how a “small” school pushes around the big boys from the Big Ten.

Michigan State never had a shot against Alabama.

(of all the losses that one was the one that hurt most. Gordon Gee’s comments were basically what most AD’s thought of TCU and Boise State and to have you’re conference champ get beat on national television like that hurts their pride. TCU showed it can play with the big dogs and get dirty with them. Guess the Badgers might be considers the little brothers of the poor now.)

With only Ohio State left (against another SEC opponent and you know how that goes) this could be the nail in the coffin for the Big Ten.

In the last few years they have been killed in the spotlight games by USC, Texas, Oregon and virtually the entire SEC. they’ve been beaten on the road, at home or on a neutral field. They’ve looked overmatched, slow and helpless at times. As of right now the Big Ten is not far off of being a mid-major because it’s just not good enough to bang with the best teams in football.

I wouldn’t want to see them in a national title game versus Auburn, in the kickoff classic versus Virginia Tech or on any major prime-time stage because you know the result before it even happens. It’ll be a waste of time for the viewer, the network and the opponent.

Today was the last straw for me. Besides the Rose Bowl the Big Ten should receive no special treatment, or perks until they prove that they deserve the same stage as Alabama, TCU or anyone top ranked program.

Of all of the major conferences they are the weakest due to the level of hype that they receive and the disappointment they always leave us with.

So complain all you want about UCONN in a BCS game, or how overrated Boise State is or how TCU wouldn’t survive in a major conference. The biggest travesty is how the Big Ten and it’s “Legends and Leaders” continue to get headlines and star in big time games. Kick them to the curb and give teams that actually make the game more interesting a shot.

Note to Gordon Gee, maybe the Big Ten should play the little sisters of the poor. They might be the only teams his conference can keep up with.


TCU Leaves No Doubters

TCU fans have long been believers. It's time for all of us to do the same.

I can’t lie… as much as I like TCU I was beginning to doubt them.

As the number 6 team in the BCS last year they looked scared when the spotlight hit them at full strength when they took on Boise State in the Fiesta Bowl and lost 17-10. They won, but not impressively, against Oregon State in an early season matchup at Cowboy Stadium. They beat teams but not with the explosiveness and power that we saw Oregon, Auburn and other schools do. Andy Dalton at times wavered between good and average as the offense had trouble getting going while the defense looked like a well oiled engine.

All of this with their biggest game in over a decade looming. Number five Utah, in Salt Lake City, Utah being two-time BCS busters who beat up Alabama two years ago in SEC country, who had been steamrolling it’s competition without a sweat. With TCU’s recent history you had to be concerned with how they would come out, how they would handle the spotlight again against such an accomplished team. After yesterday… got any other questions for the Horned Frogs?

It was not a domination it was a decimation of Utah. A parting gift of sorts as they exit the Mountain West for the greener pastures of the PAC-12. TCU not only showed that they were ready for prime-time, but also for a bigger stage.

Their 47-7 schlacking of the Utes proved that TCU is ready for the big time. In 60 minutes TCU made the BCS systems life even harder by displaying the type of power, speed and toughness  that many teams wish that they had, from Oklahoma to Texas to USC to Florida. It only took 15 minutes.

Dalton threw up 20 points including a 93 yard bomb to Josh Boyce and the defense limited Utah’s offense to 43 yards of offense and forced a fumble which lead to their third touchdown.

After that I think the numbers tell the story: yards 558-199, time of possession 39:06-20:54, turnovers forced 4-1 all favoring TCU. Utah didn’t even get on the board until a Matt Asiata touchdown catch with eleven minutes left on the game. At that point it was 40-7 advantage Frogs. Just an afterthought for a team that was beginning to look ahead to next weeks game against San Diego State.

TCU made a big statement in trouncing Utah.

With two games left the only question is now what? If they finish 12-0 then they most assuredly will be in a BCS game… just which one is the interesting part. If Auburn or Oregon were to lose whose to say that TCU shouldn’t play for the national title? I don’t care about one loss LSU or a one loss Big Ten, Big 12 or SEC team… THEY HAVE ONE LOSS! TCU is undefeated with possibly the best defense in the nation and an offense that can put up points on anyone. If TCU or Boise for that matter ( don’t forget them) were to be passed over for a one-loss team from a big conference then it would be a bigger travesty then the cop out that was last years Fiesta Bowl.

Unfortunately as we know the BCS is crooked like Les Miles is lucky (how the he’ll does he pull these games out by the way. LSU shouldn’t lost that game yesterday and to Florida and to North Carolina and to Tennessee. They’re the worst 8-1 team I think I’ve ever seen and it’s entirely their fault. Every week LSU fans are probably wondering do we want to win because this guy might get a contract extension when he doesn’t deserve one… then again you are 8-1 and you could steal TCU’s or Boise’s national title bid so I don’t care.)

So with that scenario we could see TCU in the Rose Bowl because they hold the highest ranked team to be an at-large contestant.

I’m holding out for that small chance that TCU gets to the title game. Yesterday they proved that they belong with the big boys by dismantling a very good Utah team and that they belong in the hunt for the national title.

TCU quieted the doubters in 60 explosive and demoralizing minutes that left a mental footnote on the voters and the viewers minds. These guys are good no doubt about it.