NFL: week five – Hits and Misses

There’s no way that I can go any further without talking about Tim Tebow. The Denver Broncos are playing mediocre to awful football. Kyle Orton is struggling in the current system. Last year at this time, he was one of the best quarterbacks in the league. This year he has seven interceptions and eight touchdowns. He has a quarterback rating of 75.7. That makes him the 28th-ranked quarterback in the league. The Denver fans are screaming for Tim Tebow. All I can say is – be careful what you wish for. Yes, Tim Tebow has made some exciting plays over the last year. Do you want exciting plays or do you want to go to a Super Bowl? In this league, you go to the Super Bowl with a quarterback who stays in the pocket and protects the ball. You do not go to the Super Bowl with a running quarterback. For all those people who said that he won in college, so? Chris Weinke also won in college. He had a less than stellar pro career. He had all the intangibles. He was 6’4″ tall. He weighed 232 pounds. He threw the ball well. He came from a college system that was much like the pros. Nevertheless, he ended his career with a quarterback rating of 62.2. He threw 26 interceptions, compared to 15 touchdowns.

Hits
Detroit Lions – I wanted to mention that I said that the Detroit Lions were going to win and they did. I think it’s clear that Detroit is playing some actually fabulous football. Their front seven on defense have been dominating. They’re controlling the line of scrimmage. As a matter fact, they’re playing on the other side of the line of scrimmage. This is making things easier for the offense. I’m still not quite believing in Matthew Stafford. He had some unfortunate overthrows. If the Detroit offense had been clicking on all cylinders, they could have used this opportunity to blow out the Bears, who looked terrible – false starts, couldn’t protect Cutler, couldn’t cover. I’m really looking forward to next week (see below).

San Francisco 49ers – Who would’ve thought? Last year, the 49ers couldn’t do anything right. As a matter fact, they didn’t look all that great at the beginning of this year. Now, they have a record of 4-1. They simply dismantled what I thought was a pretty good Tampa Bay Buccaneers team. Josh Freeman looked inept. The 49er defense was opportunistic. The 49er offense was clicking on all cylinders. Alex Smith, a quarterback who I thought was never going to make it in the NFL, is starting to throw the ball pretty well. He is not throwing for a ton of yards but he’s been very efficient. Frank Gore turned in one of his best performances of the year. Vernon Davis is a beast in the middle and it looks like they have a second tight end, Delanie Walker, who can play ball. The 49ers play the Detroit Lions next Sunday. This may be the game of the week. Two young teams that are starting to show something. I’m looking forward to this.

New England Patriots/Green Bay Packers – both these teams seem to keep rolling on. Personally, I think that the Green Bay Packers are probably the best team in the NFL, but I think you can make a case for the New England Patriots. I know that the Detroit Lions are still undefeated and I think that they are good, but I don’t think they’re as good as the Packers or the Patriots.

Seattle Seahawks – I thought they were awful earlier this year. I’m still not quite ready to buy the fact that they may be okay. I’m not going to say that they’re actually good. They put a lot of pressure on Eli Manning and he started spraying the ball. A couple of tip balls could’ve gone either way, but on Sunday they went the way of the Seattle Seahawks. Let’s say that they had a good game on Sunday and just wait and see what they deliver next Sunday.

Matt Cassell – QB rating of 138.9. 4 td’s and no ints!

Jahvid Best – 12 carries for 163 yards and 1 td. He was one of the main reasons that the Lions won.

Misses
Philadelphia Eagles – I know that it’s fashionable to beat up on Michael Vick and the Eagles these days. The fact is that the Eagles had an opportunity to have one of their patented fourth-quarter comebacks if it weren’t for a few tipped balls. They do have to figure out how to tackle on defense. They don’t seem to be able to stop the run, which may be their biggest problem. They have to figure out a way to stop the turnovers.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers would like to be thought of as one of the elite teams in the NFC. Unfortunately, they have to go back to the drawing board. They got thoroughly beaten on Sunday. Nothing looked good. Josh Freeman looked lost. There was no running game. Their defense was simply awful (actually worse than that, but I can’t think of a word that would be fitting – abysmal?)

New York Jets – Although I don’t think it’s time to panic in Philadelphia, it’s clearly time to panic in New York. The New York Jets are not what they thought they were going to be. They thought they were going to be better than last year. They aren’t. They’re not running the ball. Their offensive line is not creating running lanes. Their passing game is simply average. The biggest problem with the New York Jets is their front seven on defense. They simply aren’t the dominant front seven that the Jets had last year or the year before. Losing Shaun Ellis and Kris Jenkins has really hurt the Jets. The Jets traded or gave away Derrick Mason but that’s not going to fix their problems. They simply need to get tougher on defense.

More later.

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ABOUT AUTHOR
Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.

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A Letter to America

The Thirteeneth Juror

Where is The Outrage Topics
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