Thursday, October 15, 2009

14 comments Clark Judge makes claims, I then verify them

I enjoyed doing the Clark Judge beatdown so much last week I'm back for more fun. For those that missed it, the concept is called "Faceoff", and it pits the unsettlingly Peter Kingesque Pete Prisco against Clark "Sermon on the Mount" Judge. Prisco is bland but comprehensible, if I had to describe what he brings to the table I would say he "plays within himself". That said, it's a fantastic foil for the off-the-wall, I'll say what I want to because I don't play by your rules Clark Judge. Judge's writing is taken a bit more from the "divine inspiration" school of journalism. The thoughts just work through him, he doesn't have time for your facts. If Clark Judge says the Giants lose, than by God, those Giants better fucking lose.

See below for details.

Faceoff: Best-of-the-rest RB? Vince and Brady? Winless track?

yawn. It's a lackluster start but I'm sure we can make something of it.

Who is the NFL's best running back not named Adrian Peterson?

Prisco: Right now, I will go with Tennessee's Chris Johnson. It's too bad his team isn't very good. He's having a good season, but since the Titans stink on defense he isn't getting the carries he should. Tennessee is always playing from behind, so Johnson is averaging 15.6 carries per game. That's the fewest for any of the top five rushers in the league. Yet he's third in rushing, just 21 yards behind league-leader Cedric Benson. Johnson has 468 yards, but his 6.0 average is the best of any of the top five rushers. His five 20-plus runs lead the league and his two 40-plus runs are better than anybody in the top 20. He also has 16 catches, which is better than Peterson and Benson, the two runners ahead of him. A case could also be made for Steven Jackson of the Rams. He is putting up big numbers for an offense that isn't good. But for now, I'll go with Johnson, who has done more with fewer carries.

I'm not really a Chris Johnson fan, for reasons I'll address a bit further down to counter another point. For the moment, this is what I mean by Prisco, take issue if you must, but there's some justification there and it's not such a bad argument.

When he's healthy, it's San Francisco's Frank Gore.

bitch please.

Judge: He can run. He can catch. He scores touchdowns. And he produces a ton of yards. In short, he is the San Francisco offense.

he can't stay on the fucking field either. For someone whom the 49ers have relied on so heavily in the past, Gore has just 539 rushes the last three seasons. I know that sounds like a lot, but it's about 14.5 rushes a game, not exactly the do-it-all workhorse that's implied here. By way of comparison, you know how Tomlinson seems to have been hurt non stop the last two and a half years? He has 627 in one less game (due to this years bye). It's about three extra rushes a game, significant. And we haven't even gotten into the real lunchpail guys. Peterson himself for instance, has seven hundred carries. In short, Frank Gore is a bit of a pussy.

Also, can he run? I mean really? Last year he was 18th in ypc. The year before 23rd. He was 14th and 12th in carries respectively. At best he was average.

Can he catch? Sort of I guess. He's had to because of inept quarterbacking and (at times) offensive line play. Also a pretty bad set of receiving threats, so he did make quite a few catches, but I'd hardly say he was "dynamic" out of the backfield. Gore has always struck me as a bit of a lumbering guy.

He scores touchdowns? Let's investigate. 2008, six fucking rushing TDs. Right up there with immortals Dominic Rhodes and Leon Washington. 2007? Five. Equal with Chris Brown, Najeh Davenport (still in the league?) and Aaron Stecker. Congratulations Frank Gore.

Finally, has Clark Judge been watching this San Fan offense? I mean, Gore USED to be the whole offense, but that was not a very good thing. Has Clark Judge seen Vernon Davis play lately? He might be the best tight end in football right now. He is averaging five receptions a game the last three games with three TDs and getting about 13 yards a catch. Make no mistake, this guys a weapon, and no reason to believe Morgan and Crabtree won't be lots of help. Wake up Clark, stop sucking.

But Gore is hurt again

and not that good're welcome.

which makes me turn to another favorite of mine, Miami's Ronnie Brown. I want someone who does more than just run the football, and Ronnie Brown is that someone.

ok, before I start here, I like Ronnie Brown and think he's an above average back, but he's another one that's an injury concern. Nevertheless, I like him, and I want that on the record because I'm not saying he's shit. What I am prepared to say is he's in a very, very, very generous system. Wouldn't you be a little reticent to hand out accolades in bulk to Dolphin's players...I mean it's the system, it's the wildcat, batshit insane stuff the coaching staff pulls off that causes this wild (no pun intended, I guess) rushing, and to a degree, general offensive success.

It seems a dangerous game to be saying that this is down to the skill of Ronnie Brown...obviously a significant amount is, but colour me sceptical.

He's a tough inside runner.


He has the speed to turn a corner.

less true but still true...if you follow.

He runs the Wildcat better than anyone out there, and, yes, that includes Michael Vick.

what? Seriously, what? The dog fighting guy? That Michael Vick? Have I missed something? Is there a running back playing for Detroit called Michael Vick? Because you couldn't have assumed anyone reading your article would think a guy in prison the last two years and has a total of five fucking rushing attempts this year is better than Ronnie any way. Right? I mean they've been five of the worst too. Seventeen yards. And you're warning us not to be seduced by this twenty nine year old running back, who has never played the position before at NFL level, and hasn't played football at any level since 2006, 3.4ypc, who is not a starter for his current NFL team, who has rushed for a total of one first down this year...

What year is this? Where am I?

He can block, catch and throw.

I do find him to be very effective pass blocker I must say, so I agree there.

Catch is a more tenuous argument than you may think. I was ambivalent about Gore's catching prowess, but Gore had 104 receptions since the start of the 2007 season, Brown had jst 72. He also is catching less than two balls a game this year. I understand there's an illusion of him catching a lot of balls, but it's not really true, and it's becoming less true each passing game.

As for throwing, come on. Look I know it's all very cute (and yes, sometimes effective) throwing out of the 'cat, but get real. Ronnie Brown has thrown the ball six times in his last forty one games. He's made three completions in his entire career. Tone it down a bit, he's not Dan Marino just yet.

He doesn't fumble.

This is very true and extremely impressive. The last 507 times Brown has touched the ball, catching or taking the hand off, he's fumbled once. That is worth bragging about.

I think you get the idea: There is almost nothing he can't do well.

I can't speak for the rest of you, but I feel you put Steven Jackson, Steve Slaton, Matt Forte (think he'd be an especially good fit actually), Ray Rice, Maurice Jones Drew and a million other names into Miami's wildcat offense and I think you'd be singing their praises equally vociferously. I just think you need to address this elephant in the room if you're picking a Dolphin - don't you?

He averages 4.8 yards a carry, is third in the league in scoring, fifth in rushing and hasn't committed a turnover. But he's more than versatile; he's dependable.

seven games played in 2007...

When the Dolphins had one play to find the end zone Monday, they turned the offense over to Brown. He delivered.

case closed people! Please do not continue to send your applications in. It has come to my attention that Ronnie Brown punched in a one yard touchdown run in a game. King this man.

That tells you what the Dolphins think of him.

...that he's their running back? Rashard Mendenhall had a seven yard TD run this week, Michael Bush a 5 yarder. Clinton Portis did exactly the same thing from the one for HIS team. Michael Turner had two from inside the five! This is not an argument, every team treats their running backs like this. Ugh, shoot me.

Vince Young and Brady Quinn: Would the Titans and Browns be better served by starting them?

see absolutely no way a coherant argument for the "no camp" can be made myself, let's see how they do.

Prisco: As strange as this may sound, especially as it relates to Young, the answer is yes to both. Did I just say the Titans should play Vince Young? I did, and the reason is simple: Find out what you have. This Tennessee team isn't going anywhere, and Kerry Collins isn't the long-term answer. In fact, I think he's been part of the problem. So play Young and see what he can do. If he plays like he has in the past, the Titans have their answer about him. That will tell them they have to draft a quarterback high next spring, somebody like Sam Bradford. Playing Collins doesn't do anything for the long-term future. As for the Browns, Derek Anderson clearly isn't the guy. They need to find out if Quinn can be. Three games didn't decide that. So put him back and tell him the rest of the season is his. If he stinks, they need to draft a QB as well.

Prisco, you pass the common sense test, congratulations!

Judge: Yes in Tennessee. No in Cleveland. The Titans are better than 0-5

howso? They look pretty fucking terrible to me. Their secondary is arguably bottom five, their running back, while extraordinarily talented is undersized and inconsistant (1/3rd of his plays go for zero or negative yardage). I mean, he's just clearly a change of pace back. A Norwood or Reggie Bush type, I see no other way to look at it. He's not the kind of player you want touching the ball 22-26 times a game, he's just not. That's why they've kept Fatass White around in the past. In addition, they have no even marginally decent receiver (Nate Washington, seriously, you're happy with that Titans fans?), they have a quarterback who's found out it was the shoes, and a good O-Line but not one who is anything better than average in pass protection. It's a really bad offense in particular. You should be able to do better than 9 points against Indy on your home turf. Seattle managed 17 with a billion mile road trip and their backup QB. And Seattle ain't no prize pig. Oh, an the one part of their team that's looked ok - their front seven, lost their best player in the offseason, so don't look to them to make up for this glaring holes.

The schedule hasn't been unmanagable either - home against Houston and Indy, on the road to Jax and the Jets. A decent team should be able to find a couple of wins there. They are also regressing, margin of defeat looks like this, week one first: 3, 3, 7, 20, 22.

So, why are they better than 0-5 exactly?

but they need something, anything to shake them out of their funk. So Jeff Fisher says Kerry Collins isn't the problem. But I also know the Titans need a lift. So start Young and see what happens. I know there's not a conviction about him, but this is about giving the club a jolt. What's the worst that can happen? You lose another game?

that doesn't answer my question. The Titans are done, not good, bad, putrid, pitiful, pick one. Also just a terribly written pseudo-paragraph. Just rambling, unco-ordinated nonsense, punctuated by a couple of whimsical rhetorical questions. Just awful.

So you're where you started. The situation in Cleveland is more complex. Quinn should be the long-term solution, but once the Browns changed head coaches he was finished. Eric Mangini didn't draft him and has no allegiance to him. He gave him a shot, then benched him. He's not going back to him.

that's not the question. The question is would they be better served with the 24 year old you spent a first round pick on just two seasons ago who has played in a total of 7 NFL games, or Mr Two of Seventeen, 1TD, 5INT, who has completed less than half his passes in his last thirteen games. Who has never had a QB rating above 83. Yeah give me that guy...the interception guy.

At least in Tennessee you don't know what you have in Young because he has barely played. You do with Quinn.

what? Seriously what? I'm back to where I was with Vick. We've seen literally days more of Vince Young than Brady Quinn at this level. Vince has played in 34 NFL games. There may be a few more things to see, I'm not saying the story of Vince Young has been written, that would be retarded, but we know so, so, so much less about Quinn it isn't funny. And the reason for that isn't difficult to grasp - Quinn simply hasn't played much.

Go with Anderson, Brett Ratliff, Mike Pagel, Paul McDonald, it doesn't matter. There's as much hope there as there was with the Indians.

so that's your expert analysis. "I couldn't be fucked". Thanks.


Bengoodfella said...

I am pretty sure Faceoff is your thing J.S.

I learned something from that post. First thing, I really need to start thinking about Frank Gore as an elite running back in the NFL. I had always put him in the second tier of running backs, but based on what you have shown, I don't know he belongs there or not. He does seem like a lumbering runner at times, except he can't ever stay healthy. He didn't stay healthy at the University of Miami either, though a lot of people agreed he had as much or more talent than guys ahead of him.

Call me crazy, but I don't want a running back who does a whole lot more than run the football. Obviously being able to catch passes is highly beneficial as well, so I don't include that but the part about Ronnie Brown throwing touchdowns was priceless. It's not like that is a skill that really should be used when measuring the best running backs in the league. I like Ronnie Brown decently but that Wildcat offense is very beneficial to him. I would love to see Adrian Peterson or Steve Slaton in the Wildcat.

Comparing him to Mike Vick when running the Wildcat...nooooooooooooooooooooooooo, you can't do that. Vick has barely played this year.

I love the discussions that occur which are not factually supported by what you bring up. They say he is dependable and he only played in 7 games in 2007...they say he can catch the ball and he catches two per game.

I am not among those who think Vince Young should start for Tennessee, but barely. I think we have seen what he can do and that's why I say that. Maybe he should get one more chance but once you bench Collins I don't know if you can put him back in the lineup. I don't think the team has confidence in Young.

As far as Brady Quinn goes, we haven't even come close to seeing what he can do as the QB. I think the Browns should start him or Ratliff at this point. Probably Quinn. The analysis they try to give us is all wrong. Young is a known quantity, while Quinn is on a crappy team and hasn't started much so we really don't know what he can do. Better than 2 for 17? Probably.

J.S. said...

I think I am making the "a lot of cursing" tag very much my own.

Bengoodfella said...

I went ahead and added it simply because your post earned it.

KentAllard said...

Quinn has put his house on the market in Cleveland, and despite Mangini's denial (He said "Quinn's a Brown, and he'll stay a Brown", which is interesting, since he's made it pretty clear he won't play) I think he'll be moving on in the 5 days left before the trade deadline. One trade that has been floated is Quinn for Young, but no way the Titans would go for it, since the owner loves Vince Young.

The "better that Vick in the Wildcat" comparison made by Judge is going to be my biggest laugh of the day. Brown is also better in the wildcat than me, although I've had five fewer carries than Vick this year.

Bengoodfella said...

Quinn for Young is a bad idea. I would not support that if I were the Browns at all. I would take Brady Quinn for Vince Young in a heartbeat if I was the Titans.

Once Mangini says Quinn is a Brown, then you know Quinn won't be a Brown much longer.

That Wildcat comment was priceless. It's hard to beat that.

RuleBook said...

What I think he meant by dependable is that Ronnie Brown can be counted on to make a positive play, and not make many mistakes. As a counter to that, the reason he only played 7 games in 2007 is because he tore his ACL tackling a player that had intercepted a Cleo Lemon pass. So I'm going to blame Cleo Lemon for those games, not Brown.

As someone who lives in Titans country, and thus gets to watch them every week, I will say that they do have a good WR on their roster. Their first round pick, Kenny Britt, has played exceptionally, especially for a rookie in a Jeff Fisher system.

Bengoodfella said...

Maybe he did mean Brown was dependable in that you sort of know what you are going to get when he runs the ball. I guess Cleo Lemon is to blame for that torn ACL. If I were given a choice between Brown and Gore, I would probably take Brown.

I actually chickened out and didn't call J.S. out that Nate Washington was the best receiver on the Titans roster. Kenny Britt is going to be a great receiver and one of the reasons I think Vince Young should not start b/c I feel it would be detrimental to Britt's development. I wish my favorite team had gotten him because I loved him at Rutgers.

As always, good catch Rulebook.

Martin said...

How come ESPN and the NFL Betwork have both quoted Mangini as saying "Quinn isn't going to be traded"? Mangina is the coach, why the hell aren't they asking the GM? Are the Browns letting fucknut make the personel choices too? How big a freaking mistake would that be?

In most other sports the coach says "As far as I know, blah blah is here, and until I am told differently...blah blah" I guess in Cleveland they let him be team spokesman too. Christ what a assbackward franchise.

J.S. said...

Have heard of this Kenny Britt fella, though he was very quiet last week against the Colts. But are we saying this guy is GOING to be a great receiver or IS a great receiver? It's highly likely Rulebook, that you see more Titans games than I do, but your boy doesn't have a TD yet this year.

From what I've seen he looks to be a great deep threat and it's impressive that he's caught at least two balls in every game.

Dude is 22nd in receiving yards, very impressive for a rookie, but again, is that the standard here? Kenny Britt's development may be well ahead of schedule but I do not think he should be a teams #1 target at this stage of his career.

J.S. said...

As for Ronnie Brown being dependable, I mean, there's bad luck of course in any injury, and most RB's are a bit on edge with injuries anyway, but the track record is the track record and when you bring up "dependable" you leave yourself open to that. Sure, he's a good short yardage option, don't doubt you on that, but he's not one of the more dependable backs in the league.

Bengoodfella said...

I would say he is going to be a great receiver. I don't want to give him too much credit quite yet but for a rookie WR he has played fairly well. That doesn't mean the Titans have a great passing game or anything though.

I agree he shouldn't be a team's #1 target, I think Rulebook was just saying that Britt will continue to develop as a WR and hopefully by the end of the year or the beginning of next year he will be a viable threat. Of course your point the Titans don't have a great passing game now still stands in that aspect.

Ronnie Brown is about as dependable as running backs can be, but I still don't know if he is a top flight running back in the league. He runs the Wildcat better than Mike Vick though.

Martin, sounds to me like Mangini is making the decisions for the Browns I guess. Quinn needs to be traded if they aren't going to use him. The franchise is so screwed up. Play him and otherwise if you don't think he is the guy, trade him.

RuleBook said...

I think Britt has the talent to be a great receiver. Right now, he already is a good receiver. His play has been better than his numbers give him credit for, especially considering that he is the third receiver in a run-first offense.

Your comment specifically was "they have no even marginally decent receiver." That is what I was addressing. Britt is better than marginally decent. I would consider him in the "above average" range. I certainly was not attempting to imply that he already is a great receiver.

J.S. said...

Fair enough man, point taken.

Bengoodfella said...

I love how we all get along in the end. The Kenny Britt discussion has been decided officially...maybe.