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NFL: Black Monday And Wildcard Weekend

True NFL fans will have noticed that over the last four or five years there have been multiple coaches fired on the Monday after the last regular-season game. Most coaches are fired because their team, for one reason or another, did not live up to expectations. Some of the firings don’t seem to make any sense whatsoever. For example, the firing of Lovie Smith, a man who took his team to the Super Bowl with Rex Grossman as the quarterback, was fired after a 10-6 season. (Taking a team to the Super Bowl with Rex Grossman as your quarterback should get Lovie Smith into the Hall of Fame.) The Bears did not make the playoffs. So, after nine seasons, Lovie Smith, by all accounts an outstanding coach, was shown the door. Ken Whisenhunt, the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, was also fired. Ken Whisenhunt took the Cardinals to the Super Bowl. To be honest, he was one play away from winning the Super Bowl with an Arizona Cardinals team that had never seen that kind of success. Ken Whisenhunt resurrected Kurt Warner’s career. He is one of the main reasons that Kurt Warner is now being discussed as a possible Hall of Fame quarterback. Ken Whisenhunt’s problem was that he never found another quarterback after Kurt Warner retired. You simply cannot win in the NFL without a good, solid, consistent quarterback. Ask Chan Gailey who was also fired.

Wildcard weekend

There were four games last weekend and they all went according to plan. I’m sure that there are some fans the didn’t like the outcome, but the teams that were supposed to win – won. The Cincinnati Bengals versus the Houston Texans revealed that the Cincinnati offense isn’t ready for prime time. It also revealed that there’s something missing with the Houston Texans offense. Andre Johnson and Arian Foster are carrying the offense. If the Houston Texans are going to go deep into the playoffs and even to the Super Bowl somebody else is going to have to step up. As I see it, although the Cincinnati Bengals lost, basically Andy Dalton has to become more accurate. (more…)

By |2013-11-03T18:21:19-04:00January 9th, 2013|NFL|Comments Off on NFL: Black Monday And Wildcard Weekend

Cowboys verses Giants

We need to see a ton of Felix Jones running the ball

This is why you watch the NFL. It is for games like these. Everything on the line. Win and you are in the playoffs and you win the NFC East. Cool.

I just finished watching the Giants lose to the Redskins in their week 15 match-up. The Giants did just about everything that they could to lose that game. They played the run extremely badly. Had Rex Grossman played better, the Redskins could have really killed the Giants. The Redskins controlled the clock, which limited Eli Manning. Also, the wide receivers for the Giants were dropping the ball like they got paid to run great routes and drop the ball.

Beating the Giants (Dallas offense): We need to be able to run the ball. There is some concern about the lost of Montrae Hollard (he tore his biceps and is out for the rest of the season). It appears that veteran Derek Dockery will start at left guard. This should be okay. The Cowboys need to run the football. Felix Jones appears to be in position to take a significant amount of the work. He was out last week with a hamstring injury. Sammy Morris has run the ball well, but the Cowboys are going to need the big-play ability of Felix Jones. We need to be able to control the clock. This will protect our extremely vulnerable defense. In my opinion, we need to run a lot of two and three tight end sets. This gives us a strong run formation and we should be able to pass the ball to Jason Witten, John Phillips and Martellus Bennett (who has been playing a little better lately). It is imperative that the Cowboys run the ball effectively in order to neutralize the pass rush of the New York Giants. Jason Pierre Paul is their new sensation. He was extremely disruptive during the last Dallas Cowboys – New York Giants meeting. He had two sacks (one of the sacks was for safety), a forced fumble and a blocked field goal. The play action pass will be open off of the run. The true weakness of the New York Giants defense is their secondary. The true strength of the New York Giants is their offense. Therefore, we need to keep them on the sidelines. Run the ball. Short passing game. Control the clock. I’m not worried about Romo’s hand. I’m more worried about Romo’s protection. We must take this fight to the Giants and it starts on offense.

Beating the Giants (Dallas defense): I have no idea what Rob Ryan has been focusing on this last week. As defensive coordinator, he should’ve seen a lot of things that turned his stomach while watching the film of New York Giants – Dallas Cowboys football game. The Cowboys got no sacks. If you get no pressure on Eli Manning, expect to lose the game. The front seven of the Dallas Cowboys is as competitive a group as you’ll find in the NFL. The secondary for the Cowboys — how can I put this? They simply suck. Both corners are playing poorly. Abram Elam (safety) is not playing particularly well. Gerald Sensabaugh is making plays all over the field, but he need some help. Orlando Scandrick is playing okay in the slot. That’s it. Dallas had trouble stopping the run and the pass against the Giants a couple weeks ago. DeMarcus Ware appears to be healthy. Jay Ratliff, All-Pro nose tackle, appears to be healthy. They have to be able to play at the top of their game in order for the Dallas defense not to be abused. The key may be Anthony Spencer. If he can play well, the Cowboys have a good chance of winning this game.

These teams are mirror images of each other. Both QBs are good. Both offenses are good. They both have defenses which are not playing well enough for either team to go deep into the playoffs. This game is a toss-up. In a league in which the Packers can lose to the Kansas City Chiefs, anything can happen. In a league in which the St. Louis Rams beat the New Orleans Saints (remember this was a week after DeMarco Murray ran for over 200 yds against the Rams), anything can happen. Let’s sit back and enjoy a great game. I hope you have a wide screen in HD because this is going to be fun.

By |2012-01-01T14:50:19-04:00January 1st, 2012|NFL|Comments Off on Cowboys verses Giants

NFL Week 15: A Few Thoughts and Predictions

The Dallas Cowboys took care of business last night against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It was a game that they were supposed to win. They jumped out to a 28-0 lead. Their defensive secondary continues to to be the Achilles’ heel of the Dallas Cowboys. I just don’t see how they can fix this in the next couple of weeks.

Miami Dolphins versus Buffalo Bills – Buffalo is playing at home. I’m going with Buffalo.

Seattle Seahawks versus Chicago Bears – Seattle is actually playing pretty well. Chicago cannot generate enough offense without Jay Cutler and Matt Forte. Seattle.

Carolina Panthers versus Houston Texans – How about Houston winning with their third-string quarterback?! I think that Houston will continue their winning ways. Their defense will come up with ways to slow down Cam Newton. Houston.

Green Bay Packers versus Kansas City Chiefs – The only question is whether the game will be over by the end of the first quarter or by the end of the second quarter? Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay Packers remain undefeated.

Tennessee Titans versus Indianapolis Colts – Smart people are saying that the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts Jim Caldwell will be fired at the end of the season. My question is why? The team is built around Peyton Manning. The team wasn’t built around the quarterback position, but around a specific quarterback and his skills. Without Peyton Manning scoring 30 points a week, the defense, which was mediocre by everyone’s standards, is now exposed as awful. How is that Jim Caldwell’s fault? Tennessee Titans should win this game.

New Orleans Saints versus Minnesota Vikings – I’m sure there’s some calculus in which Minnesota figures out a way to win this game, but I sure can’t figure it out. Drew Breeze and the Saints should win this game.

Washington Redskins versus New York Giants – Rex Grossman should actually have a good game. I must the Redskins defense can force a couple turnovers, I don’t see the Redskins making enough plays to win this game. The New York Giants do have a secondary that is almost as bad as the Dallas Cowboys’ secondary, but they should be able to win this game. New York football Giants.

Cincinnati Bengals versus St. Louis Rams – Cincinnati.

Detroit Lions versus Oakland Raiders – Can Detroit force Carson Palmer into throwing a couple of interceptions? If the answer is yes, then Detroit should roll. I think that Carson will play better today than he has the last couple of weeks. I’m going to take the Oakland Raiders.

Cleveland Browns versus Arizona Cardinals – Arizona.

New England Patriots versus Denver Broncos – I see Tom Brady and the New England Patriots actually playing a ball control offense and keeping the ball away from Tim Tebow. I see lots of short passes. I see lots of tough inside running and I see the Patriots working very hard to try to jump out to an early lead of two touchdowns are more. I’m choosing the magic of Tom Brady over the magic of Tim Tebow.

New York Jets versus the Philadelphia Eagles – this game is hard to read. Because I’m tired, because I’ve been up all night, I’m just gonna pull this one out of my… hat. Philadelphia Eagles.

Baltimore Ravens versus San Diego Chargers – San Diego’s surging. They finally have a full complement of receivers. Antonio Gates is also helping. I’m going to go with the San Diego super Chargers.

Pittsburgh Steelers versus San Francisco 49ers – This game will hinge on whether Big Ben plays or not. If he plays and can be effective, I think the Steelers offense will be able to make enough plays to win this game. If he doesn’t play, I think that the San Francisco 49ers should win this game.

By |2011-12-18T11:06:02-04:00December 18th, 2011|NFL|Comments Off on NFL Week 15: A Few Thoughts and Predictions
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