Monday, November 23, 2009

13 comments MMQB Review: There's Matty Ices Everywhere!

Another exciting week of NFL football action has come and gone and now all we have to look forward to is the Monday Night Football Game between Houston and Tennessee. Do they even play in the NFL? I would be surprised if ESPN didn't put their "D" NFL team on this game consisting of Ron Franklin and Todd Blackledge. It doesn't even have a sexy East Coast team to be seen in the matchup. They may not even televise the game.

Monday Night Football games aside, Peter King is back again with his MMQB and it's an ode to "Matts." If your first name begins with Matt, Peter loves you (except Schaub). What do we learn today, does Peter think this Ricky Williams player could be a breakout player this year and more importantly, will Peter be able to get a full 2 questions for his Tuesday mailbag based on this column? We'll see I guess.

Talking with commissioner Roger Goodell, while he was getting his makeup wiped off in our NBC Football Night in America studio Sunday night after his Eagles-Bears halftime appearance ...

"You know how great you have it in the NFL this year?'' I asked. "Your TV ratings are totally through the roof, and here we are today, worst game of the year, Cleveland-Detroit, and it might be the best game of the year.''

That was an exciting game, no one can doubt that, but was it the "best game of the year?" Cleveland scored 37 points! Not the Cleveland Cavaliers, but the Cleveland Browns. Detroit scored 38 points. It had an exciting and a little bizarre finish but I don't know if I would call a game where there was little-to-no defense played between two very bad football teams as "the best game of the year." We all know I am about the little guy and Peter covering each team, but this game didn't strike me as football played at it's highest level for extended periods of time so there is no need to get overly excited about it. Of course that won't stop Peter. I am torn here, because I like it when Peter pays attention to other teams but I have to also acknowledge these are two bad teams who played each other.

Last week it was a 35-34 game between the Colts and Patriots that captured America.

As much as it would please me to argue this point, we did talk about this game A LOT. Maybe "captured America" is a bit dramatic and overdoing it. The game didn't exactly capture America, it was Bill Belichick's fourth down call that piqued the interest of America and the world (some parts of the world at least. England still doesn't give a shit).

We'll start there, then meander through the play Kansas City coach Todd Haley drew up in the dirt (slight exaggeration) to beat the World Champions.

Don't write it if it's an exaggeration. In journalism that is called a "slight lie."

Before Stafford and I started talking, I could hear the labored breathing and slight grunts -- I assume from Stafford -- as the harness went on his shoulder. X-rays were negative, but you could read his lips after he threw the winning touchdown and went to the sideline in intense pain. "It's out! It's out!'' he said, meaning his shoulder popped out of the socket.

If this were Brett Favre we would hear about this injury at the press conference after the game, in the interviews in the locker room, possibly through the week after the game, and of course he would tell Peter all about it.

"I don't know how I played today, my shoulder was out of socket. I'm not a hero, just a normal guy who played a game of football with his shoulder ripped out of socket because I love this game so much and couldn't let my teammates down. Is that microphone on? You are recording my heroic statement, right?"

Now I understand the wounded Lions fans. I hear from so many of you. The hopelessness, the anti-Matt Millenism, the surrender, the longing simply to be relevant again. And Goodell's right. This might have been something big right here. Not saying the Lions are on the road to contention. But they're mad as hell, and they're not going to take the losing anymore,

I hate to be a wet blanket, but they beat the Cleveland Browns...and gave up 37 the Cleveland Browns. The defense of the Lions gave up 37 points to the Browns and I am supposed to think this means the Lions have turned a corner because the game ended excitingly? Really the only statement this game makes is, "we are not as bad as the Cleveland Browns are."

And so that's why I choose this morning to write about the second win of the Detroit Lions at the top of the column, rather than the 10th victory for the Saints and the Colts.

Because you literally write about those two teams every single week? That would be the reason I would use to not cover these games extensively in MMQB on this date.

We all know the reason Peter wrote about the Cleveland-Detroit game this week is because, for some reason, this is the game he watched in it's entirety this weekend. That's what he does. He watches a game in it's entirety and then writes his column about that game and fills in the rest of the MMQB with highlights he was able to glean from some other games. If the game he didn't watch in it's entirety is the best game of the day, he calls and gets quotes from that game from the players and then writes about it. That's how Peter rolls.

The game came down to two plays. You've seen them, I'm sure. With eight seconds left and Cleveland up 37-31 (thanks to Brady Quinn's four touchdown passes)

I thought Brady Quinn should have been starting all year for the Browns, so I am a sort of Quinn fan...but he threw 4 touchdown passes in this game against the Lions defense and he has never shown this ability throughout his entire career before this game. This is not an indication the Lions are back on the right track.

Bang! Mosley drove Stafford as hard as a quarterback can be driven into the ground. The ball fluttered into the air, right into the arms of safety Brodney Pool.

Interception. Ballgame.


So the very definition of "clutch," Matt Stafford, actually threw an interception that would have lost the game if it hadn't been for a lucky flag? Let's just ignore this and focus on his heroism. We did it for years with Favre.

"I was flat on my back on the sidelines, and the doctors were trying to figure out what was wrong with my shoulder,'' said Stafford. "But I heard, 'Timeout Cleveland,' and then I knew I could come back in.''

And the Lions got lucky when Mangini coached his team to a loss by calling a timeout letting Stafford back in the game. If these two plays don't scream "high quality football" then I don't know know what is wrong with you. We have porous defense, clutchly thrown interceptions, and piss poor coaching. It was like the Super Bowl, just not televised as widely.

Meanwhile, Schwartz hollered at his medical staff: "Is he good to go?'' And one of the doctors said no, and Schwartz asked what was wrong, and the doc said he didn't know because they hadn't had time to examine him yet.

"The kid put himself back in the game,'' Schwartz said.

Brilliant move by Schwartz to allow his franchise quarterback, who was injured but no one had an idea what was wrong with him, to just go back in the game. Brilliant.

Even the medical staff of Detroit is incompetent.

The Chiefs install their red-zone pass plays on Thursday mornings. Usually they're pulled out of the phone-book-thick playbook, plays that were taught in minicamps, practiced in training camp and used, most likely, a few times previously during the season. But last Thursday, Haley walked into the offensive team meeting and told his team he had something new to use against the Steelers down near the goal line -- a shovel pass to running back Jamaal Charles while the rest of the team was in max-protect mode.

This was the play Peter thought Todd Haley had drawn in the dirt. To Peter a shovel pass near the goal line is winging it. To the rest of the world this is an actual, smart football play, but to Peter this is crazy freelancing.

As Keith Olbermann said Sunday night, "Ryan Succop for the win, and oh, don't you look nice tonight, Mrs. Cleaver.''

This statement is not funny, not witty, not clever...I don't care about Keith Olbermann's politics or anything else about him. He is a smug asshole and if he truly ceased to be on this earth (maybe be shot into space or something) then I would feel slightly better knowing there is one less smug, self impressed douchebag alive.

Football and war really do have something in common, other than the cliches.

No they don't.

Good story by Jay Glazer on FOX's pregame show about how independent neurologists will soon be employed at all NFL games, so that a team physician paid by a franchise won't have a conflict of interest about whether to allow an injured player back in the game.

How interesting considering Peter King was just lauding Matt Stafford for coming back in the game before the trainers had a chance to check him for his injury and now he is lecturing on the importance of proper safety in the NFL. Gregg Easterbrook is right about this part. Football guys lecture us on how important football safety is and then praise individuals who come back from injury quickly and ignore any health concerns there may be.

He said he thinks organized offseason conditioning has spiraled out of control. (And bully for him on this -- it's ridiculous how year-round a job playing and coaching has become.) "I'm a firm believer that players are overworked in the offseason,'' Goodell said. "They probably need to get away from the game a little bit more. And when they're away, they probably work harder.

I wonder why Peter is all for this? Probably because it means he will have some more time off during the summer. Lazy...

But what makes Minnesota dangerous is that Brett Favre's playing like he played in his three-year MVP run a decade and a half ago. In fact, my Twitter followers are appealing for me to have Favre pass Peyton Manning in my MVP Watch below, and if he keeps this up, I'm going to have a very tough decision at the end of the year.

I really, really, really doubt Peter King's Twitter followers are begging for him to have Brett Favre pass Peyton Manning in the MVP Watch. There are probably 9 Vikings fans who want this to happen. This is beyond absurd. Brett Favre has the best running back in the NFL AND one of the best defenses in the NFL on his side, while Peyton Manning IS the Colts. The Vikings won their division and made the playoffs without Favre last year, sure he has added value to the team, but there is no way based on that information anyone can truly believe Favre is more valuable than Peyton Manning. What are the Colts without Manning, 2-8 right now?

Watching Favre through 10 weeks, I'm starting to think he's going to make it through 16 games, and more. His groin strain doesn't seem to be bothering him.

Yes, Peter King just extended his streak of talking about Brett Favre in every MMQB since last December (that's how far back I chose to go). The reason Favre's groin strain doesn't bother him is because it likely doesn't exist. It's hard to be affected by an injury that doesn't exist or at least isn't as severe as Favre likes to play up.

Clearly, it's helped Favre to have the best offensive supporting cast he's ever had. The line keeps him clean, he has the best all-around back in football, Adrian Peterson, behind him, and he has three deep threats (Percy Harvin, Sidney Rice and Bernard Berrian), the kind of depth at receiver he didn't have with the Packers or Jets.

So because Favre has a better supporting cast he should be the MVP? This doesn't make sense. Peter has spent this entire NFL season telling everyone and anyone who will listen how Peyton Manning is doing such a great job with the nobodies on his offense and now he wants to just forget that and give the MVP to Favre while acknowledging the supporting cast around Favre. It's madness.

Aaron Rodgers is cleaning up his act in the pocket.

First eight games: 37 sacks, five interceptions. Last two games: six sacks, no interceptions. There's no question Rodgers was simply holding onto the ball too long, and his leaky offensive line -- particularly at right tackle -- was getting him bowled over.

I like how even thought there are other variables as to why Aaron Rodgers was getting sacked, like the types of routes being run by his receivers, his offensive line's play, and yes, Rodgers holding onto the ball too long, Peter chooses to focus completely on the "holding onto the ball too long" as to why Rodgers is getting sacked so much. It's interesting Peter doesn't say the offensive line isn't giving Rodgers enough time, he says Rodgers is holding onto the ball too long and the offensive line is not protecting him because of this...he just slightly puts more of the blame on Rodgers instead of the offensive line.

A couple of times last year, when he was most frustrated, Vince Young would text Kobe Bryant, who had become something of a mentor. He'd write something like, "Man, I wanna play so bad. What do I do?''

Don't tell people you hate football and act like you want to kill yourself. You could also try to get traded and then pretend you are cool with your teammates when you are forced to play with them because the team wouldn't trade you." That would be Kobe Bryant's advice.

Those demands came to a head early last season, when his worried mother reached out for help after seeing Young leave his house with a gun.

"That was blown out of proportion,'' said Young. "My mom never saw me with a pistol before, and when she did, she got nervous. I have a pistol for protection. I was never gonna harm myself, but she got nervous.''

So his mom saw him with a gun and just automatically assumed he was going to kill himself? Isn't that a HUGE leap in logic? Isn't there maybe 10 other scenarios a mother might think about first before going to "he is going to kill himself," unless that mother had a preconceived notion for one reason or another her child would actually try to kill himself? How the hell can anyone actually believe this reason? I have seen tons of people with guns in my life and I have never thought one of them was going to kill himself because I knew they weren't potentially suicidal. Now if I thought someone carrying was a gun was potentially suicidal I may think maybe this situation wasn't blown out of proportion.

Of course Peter King buys this reason. He is either not smart enough to question it or wants to be friends with Vince Young so he intentionally believes his bullshit.

I lied. One really final note from 35-34, unless I find something else that deserves to be in here.

First Peter calls it "The Call" and now he is just giving us the score of the game. I know the media is trying hard to create super duper special memories for all of us and to make this Patriots-Colts game into an absolute classic, but let's just take a break from trying so hard. It was a good game, every Colts-Patriots game doesn't have to be a classic.

The Fine Fifteen

1. New Orleans (10-0). Don't look now, but Drew Brees has a new weapon who's pretty good -- wideout Robert Meachem,

He's not new. He is an underachieving first round pick. I think I would look good playing wide receiver with Brees as the quarterback.

Quote of the Week I

"Gutsy game by the kid.''
-- Text message from Detroit coach Jim Schwartz to me an hour after Matthew Stafford, being treated for a mangled left shoulder, broke away from team medics and made an unauthorized entry into the Lions-Browns game for the final play, completing the winning touchdown pass for a 38-37 win.

Wasn't it just earlier in this exact same MMQB Peter King did a couple paragraphs about how Roger Goodell is getting a study together with the Army to see how long it takes football players and soldiers to get back on the field after an injury...and Peter indicated this was a good thing? It's a little bit hypocritical to write about that and favor it and then make Matt Stafford who had an injury with unknown severity a hero for going right back on the field? Not to mention he is the franchise quarterback. It's heroic in a football sense, but also pretty damn risky.

Quote of the Week III

"There are New England football fans who'd support Belichick if he pledged to eradicate indoor plumbing.''
-- Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy, on the local loyalty Bill Belichick inspires.

Thank God Peter and Dan Shaughnessy are here to tell me how much New England likes Bill Belichick. I tend to forget if I am not reminded every single day what a great coach and inspiring leader he is. Fortunately, they are here with blanket coverage of this.

Isn't there a curse or something else Dan Shaughnessy has to go cover? Doesn't it say a lot about Peter King that he said he moved to Boston partly to read Dan Shaughnessy?

MVP Watch

2. Brett Favre, QB, Minnesota. We might be watching the most amazing year of his ridiculous career.

Brett Favre is great. We all get this. He also plays for a team that was very good last year and would have been very good with or without him this year. While Peter is so damn focused on the awesomeness of Brett Favre, I wish he would also focus on the awesomeness of the team around Brett Favre...and more importantly, how much Adrian Peterson helps Favre.

Enjoyable/Aggravating Travel Note of the Week

I Weep For Humanity Dept.: The NBC Football Night in America crew took in the Panthers-Rangers game Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. Entering the building, I saw eight 18ish Ranger-clad guys and gals posing for a photo, with what I assumed was a passerby who agreed to take their photo. All posed with middle fingers pointing at the camera.

Oh the horror! If I saw Peter King and the NBC Football Night in America crew enter any building I would probably start flipping everyone off too.

Peter had some sort of contest that allowed one of his Twitter followers to write about any topic of choice and Peter would publish it. A guy named Tim wrote several paragraphs on why he prefers to watch a game on television rather than go to a game. I can explain why in a sentence.

Everything is too expensive, parking is a hassle, it takes up nearly your entire day, you can say whatever you want to at the television in frustration at home and don't have to worry about a kid hearing you (unless it is your kid), you have to brave the elements (whatever they may be) and you really can't see everything that happens at a football game.

f. I don't care what the Bears say. If they keep going down the drain and Jay Cutler's mentor is on the unemployment line, they have to look at Shanahan.

Yes, because those two had so much success together in Denver, they need to try and put another .500 team together in Chicago.

3. I think Eagles defensive end Trent Cole is one of the 10 most underappreciated players in the NFL. That's what you call a guy who's had sacks in eight of Philly's 10 games, yet won't get a sniff for the Pro Bowl.

I don't think Trent Cole could ever be as unappreciated as Antonio Gates is though. Whatever happened to Antonio Gates and why don't we talk about him more?

c. Who'd have ever thought Julian Edelman would be this kind of receiver? Looks like he's been catching passes for seven years, not seven months.

I thought he could be this kind of receiver because Bill Belichick fucking drafted him and that means he is going to be in the Pro Bowl forever. Peter has a firm grasp on the New England Patriots depth chart and has mentioned Edelman several times this year but last week he couldn't seem to remember why we don't talk about Antonio Gates more, yet he knows all about Julian Edelman. I find this interesting.

Also, Edelman was a quarterback in college, it's not like he had never seen or caught a football prior to this year. He's making a good transition to receiver but let's temper this excitement a little can we?

d. The Saints made up quite nicely for their injured cornerbacks -- Tracy Porter and Jabari Greer -- in Tampa Bay, holding Josh Freeman to 126 yards passing and picking him off three times. Good job by Randall Gay.

Great job stopping that rookie quarterback New Orleans. It's always hard to stop rookie quarterbacks and you certainly wouldn't expect a team that was undefeated to be able to do this.
e. The Broncos are cooked. Kaput. Never has a defense seemed like such a mirage as the D of the first six Denver games.

But I thought Josh McDaniels was a genius and the Broncos were going to be good this year? Isn't that what I was told in MMQB at the beginning of the year? Bill Simmons isn't bragging so loudly about his underdog Denver Broncos pick now is he? It's funny how he bragged about that for the first couple weeks when the Broncos were winning but now he is strangely silent on the issue.

7. I think you have to sit Mark Sanchez, Rex Ryan. The game's overwhelming for him right now. His last pick Sunday in Foxboro was just plain stupid, if not panicky. Time for Kellen Clemens.

I find it hilarious the two biggest storylines of the early part of the NFL season, Mark Sanchez and Denver's rise, are now completely over and both the player and the team have gone back to the level we expected. Should the media, and Peter King, feel stupid about saying all the wonderful and hyperbolic things about Sanchez and the Broncos? Probably, but that doesn't mean next year they won't overreact to a rookie quarterback's first couple of successful games and think another team will win the Super Bowl after starting the year off by winning a few games.

Never underestimate the media's ability to hype up a situation and then quietly never mention they were wrong in hyping up the situation when it all goes to hell.

How interesting would it have been if Dungy coached with Parcells and Belichick? Would they have become smitten with his coaching ability? Would he have joined Belichick's staff in Cleveland, or gone on the long and winding trail through the '90s with Parcells, or stayed in New York and impressed George Young and Wellington Mara enough to succeed Ray Handley after that debacle? Instead, he ended up in staredowns with Belichick for seven years in the best rivalry in the league. I love these what-if games.

I hate what-if games.

c. You call that a lot of Funkhauser? Come on, Larry David. When I say I want Funkhauser, I mean not just three or four lines.

I wonder if Peter King knows they shot this episode months ago or that Larry David doesn't really look to him for comedic ideas? Probably not.

f. Until Saturday, I'd never heard of Oregon quarterback Jeremiah Masoli. But I have a feeling I'll be typing his name an awful lot in the coming year. What a football game that was in Tucson. Three touchdowns running by Masoli, three passing. What a cool cucumber.

Who says Peter King has an East Coast bias? Just because he hadn't heard of the quarterback for the #8 team in the nation, and the only team on the West Coast in the Top 15 doesn't mean he has an East Coast bias. (End of sarcasm)

We don't need Peter King's opinion of Jeremiah Masoli. It's not like my life is incomplete without Peter King chiming in on what he thinks about Masoli. As his habit, Peter is a few months late in recognizing the skill of Masoli and then he makes a proclamation about what a great player he is. We know already.

It was really awesome to see the Arizona fans line up to rush the field and then the team lost. What a stupid thing to do for those fans. It's not like Arizona had the game in hand and Oregon pulled out a miracle, Oregon was driving down the field, had timeouts left and still those dumbasses climbed over barriers and got ready to rush the field. It was the definition of premature. The second I saw the Arizona fans start to crowd the field I wanted Oregon to win the game...though preferably by more than 6 points.

j. Sunday night, 10:47, walking back from NBC to my midtown hotel. Phone rings. It's Brian Hyland, my former compadre on HBO's Inside the NFL. He's at the final Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band concert of this tour (forever, perhaps?) in Buffalo, and he's now considerate enough to call me as "Tenth Avenue Freezeout'' begins, and he keeps the phone on for the first eight minutes of the song. Thanks, Brian. Not the best sound quality, but I'm a beggar, and I'm not choosy.

This is pathetic. I can see maybe listening to a few seconds of the concert and then telling his good friend Brian to have a good night and go about his life, but to listen to 8 minutes of a song through a cell's not like Peter had never been to a Springsteen concert before either. This is a bit of overkill in my mind.

If Peter had to choose between talking to Brett Favre on the phone for 8 minutes or hearing 8 minutes of a Bruce Springsteen song, I wonder which one he would choose?

Well, I think Peter got 2-3 good mail bag questions out of this MMQB.


Go said...

I am convinced that growing PK was the obese kid in school who had no friends, participated in no activities and spent every night at home with his parents playing bridge. He acts like he has just been let out into the world and is discovering that teenagers like to flick off cameras! What's the world coming to? OMG I busted out laughing when I read that. Classic PK.

He called Robert Meachem (MVP of every pre-season) pretty good? This guy is a very under-achieving WR. I also think PK only reads box scores then writes about a player.

Let me get this straight. Some QBs are called brave for staying in the pocket waiting for an open receiver even if his porous O-Line is allowing defenders to pound him. Yet other QBs are just bad players because they hold onto the ball too long geting themselves sacked.

Did PK put the Aaron Rodgers part right after the Favre paragraph(s)? He's such a dick. I'm not a GB fan but it would be absolutely incredible if somehow GB got into the playoffs and Rodgers put up over 300yds 4 tds and Favre had 150yds 3ints and GB won. Please let this happen. In the NFC Championship would be even better.
I'm glad Favre isn't on my team because there's no way I would root for them until he left.

KentAllard said...

I had the misfortune to watch Cleveland-Detroit yesterday, and there's no doubt about it: Eric Mangini is the Bizarro World Belichek. You can't plan for him because there's no sense to anything he does.

I can't go into every stupid decision he made, but try this one: 13 seconds left, the Browns have 4th and 9 at the Lions' 21. Out comes the field goal unit. Wait, it's a fake! The Cleveland kicker passes for a first down to the 11. So Cleveland...kicks the field goal they faked in the first place. Even the announcers were momentarily silent, since they won't let them say "bugfuck" on TV.

RuleBook said...

I'm going to come to King's defense over one issue:

How interesting considering Peter King was just lauding Matt Stafford for coming back in the game before the trainers had a chance to check him for his injury and now he is lecturing on the importance of proper safety in the NFL.

To me, there is a huge difference between brain/head injuries and all other injuries. If a player wants to risk pain or further injury to his body, I'm ok with that (at a professional level). That's a judgment that a player can make. I don't think we can make a great comparison between a shoulder injury and concussions (which is the connection Peter was drawing with the military - head injuries only). I would hope that no one would have praised Stafford for coming on the field after a head injury.

- Also, there were a couple of rules/calls that seemed to raise questions, and I have not heard them answered properly, so I'm going to simply offer some clarification here.

1) Illegal Contact vs Pass Inteference:

King addressed this, but he didn't clarify the rule to my liking:

Seems that Browns nickel back Hank Poteat tackled wideout Calvin Johnson in the end zone, thinking physical play was OK because Stafford had left the pocket. "No! No!" one of the officials kept saying over and over to Poteat. "Pass interference!"

When a QB leaves the pocket, all contact with a receiver is permissible (other than obvious things like facemasking). However, this only exists until the ball is thrown. Once the ball is in the air, interference rules are the same no matter where the QB is. The reason the ref was saying "Pass interference!" over and over is because Poteat was correct that there couldn't be an illegal contact penalty since Stafford was out of the pocket, but it didn't matter because the call was interference. No contact (other than the obvious incidental contact) is permissible when the ball is in the air.

2) There was a play near the end of the first half of the Jets/Patriots game where Welker caught a pass and the Patriots spiked the ball, only to have the refs claim that the catch was under review after the spike occurred. I have heard many people attempt to explain this (from those on TV to those on NFL radio), and apparently none of them have talked to Mike Pereira.

In the waning minutes of a half (I don't know the specific time limits), when a play that leaves the clock running is called, it cannot be reviewed until after the offensive team has proven that it can get the ball legally snapped before the clock runs out. The reason for this is that if the refs review the play, and the ruling is upheld, they have to ensure that another play could have been run (since the review would stop the clock). This prevents a review from acting like a college first-down (giving the team extra time to line up). Thus, in this situation, the ref will only call for the play to be under review AFTER the ball is snapped.

I know of this situation because it occurred two years ago in the Cowboys/Bills Monday night game, and it was well explained by the league offices. If the play yesterday had resulted in anything meaningful (the Pats missed the FG, but still won by 10), then I'm sure the league would have come out with an explanation.

- Also, I'd like to nominate Troy Polamalu for MVP. Without him in the full game, the Steelers have lost to the Bears, Bengals twice, and the Cheifs.

Bengoodfella said...

Go, he may have that kid. Kids flipping off cameras really isn't anything new, but this was shocking to him. I hate to wonder what would happen if he found out what his daughter's did in college.

He called Meacham "another weapon" for Drew Brees. He is fourth on the depth chart, possibly lower and has been injured and underachieved his career.

Yes, is the answer to your question about QB's waiting in the pocket. It depends on who the QB is and whether Peter likes said QB or not also when he decides whether it is fine to hold on to the ball or not. He did put the Rodgers part just a little bit after the Favre stuff. Those two are going to be compared, i don't think there is a way to get away from it, but he did put them fairly close. Rodgers may need a better pocket presence but he is also a second year starter in the NFL with a horrible O-line. I don't dislike Favre, but between the past couple of summers and the fawning over him by Peter King, I have gotten to the point I am very much pro-Rodgers over Favre and I don't like Favre at all.

Kent, that is fantastic that Mangini faked a field goal only to end up with a field goal. I guess he thought there would be a touchdown scored on the fake. He is like Belichick if Belichick went against every decision he wanted to make. Who were the announcers for that game?

Rulebook, I know there is a difference in head injuries and shoulder injuries, so I guess I should focus less on King being a hypocrite and the Lions being idiots for letting Stafford back on the field without knowing the extent of his injury. If there was something structurally wrong with his arm, it could have ended his year. I couldn't let the fact no one knew the exact injury go and lose the small window I had to call Peter a hypocrite. Perhaps I was too eager.

Thanks for the clarification on illegal contact v. pass interference. That's true that there can't be an illegal contact call outside of the pocket, but there can be pass interference. Either way, Poteat screwed up there. I think Peter should have clarified the rule, assuming he knew the rule.

I had no idea about that Welker ruling from yesterday. I didn't completely get it, but it makes sense that it would give the team a free play and that's not the intention. So after the Patriots showed they could get another play off, then the officials would review. That's why you call yourself Rulebook...

You may have a case for Troy Polamalu. The Steelers have generally been a bad team without him. That sort of thing is what I am talking about in regard to Favre. He went to a good team and made them better, but a player like Polamalu is vitally important in making the Steelers go from out of the playoffs to AFC Championship contenders. I don't think Favre has that affect on the Vikings.

Martin said...

Troy's absence effecting the entire team, even the offense, has just been amazing to watch this season. The Steelers need to think about drafting a safety to replace this guy for when he's injured since it's clear he's so vital. Hell to give him more rest even.

I don't understand all this "Favre as MVP" talk sprouting up. Yes he has great numbers, but I seriously think that any good QB would be posting the same numbers this year with the weapons he has along with the outstanding D. I can't even imagine the numbers a Brady, Manning or Brees would put up there with that Purple Jesus in the backfield. McNabb, Rivers, Rodgers, Eli, Schaub, Ryan, would all be putting up similar numbers to Favre I would wager.

KentAllard said...

Don Criqui and Randy Cross were the announcers. You would think they were hoping for a TD, but the play sure looked like it was designed to pick up the first and no more. If it hadn't been Cleveland, it would have made headlines.

Syed Ashrafulla said...

I know this is going to make me sound really stupid, but wrestler Bryan Danielson has done a hell of a lot more (53 minutes of a 60-minute wrestling match) with a separated shoulder than Stafford. It's an injury, I agree, but the change in that injury between being in on that play and not being in on that play is not very high.

For reference, it was the Danielson-Cabana ROH Title match in 2006. Of course if you know that reference, you should really get some new jeans; that Copenhagen ring is not coming out.

Bengoodfella said...

I can't believe the Steelers have struggled without Polamalu in the lineup. I wonder if it is just coincidence or not that they have lost when he is not in the lineup?

Favre's a good QB still but you can't give the MVP to any team that also has the best running back in the NFL on the roster and a bad ass defense like the Vikings have.

I don't think I ever even heard of that first announcer. I can't believe that was not designed for a 1st down. Insanity. I almost want Mangini to stay on with the Browns to see what other bad moves he could make.

Syed, I am not too familiar with wrestling references. One of my best friends had kept separating his shoulder while playing basketball, so he finally had to have surgery to fix it. It looks like it hurt, but if it wasn't his throwing shoulder than it may not have made a huge difference. Still, I think it is funny the Lions didn't know what was wrong with him at all.

I just feel good I don't need new jeans.

ivn said...

this whole texting thing is fucking nuts. I mean it's nice if you need to quickly tell something to a friend or your girlfriend, but there shouldn't be any room in a national column for some five word blurb from a head coach. maybe I'm just old fashioned.

speaking as someone who has Marques Colston in fantasy football, Robert Meachem is nothing more than a pain in the ass. damn TD vulture.

just like Peter, I am stunned that a bunch of [potentially drunk] New Yorkers would flip the bird in a photo. this would never fly at the Montclair Country Club!

it's also hilariously worth noting that both Cleveland and Detroit are in the Eastern Time Zone. even so, they're both west of the Appalachians so maybe these are baby steps for Peter. one of these days he'll venture west of the Mississippi in his column.

Bengoodfella said...

I don't think you are old fashioned, I think it is just easier sometimes for Peter to get a quick text from a coach than actually call that person up. You know, he is so busy and all of that.

Everytime I think of picking up Meachem, I think better of it and I end up regretting not getting him off the waiver wire.

Apparently Peter has never seen kids go into public before and act like fools. I wonder if he has been to an NFL game in the past 10 years, because flipping a camera off is not the high point of the debauchery.

That is true, I did not want to insult him too much because he is making steps towards making it out towards the West Coast. I hear there is a very good receiver named Larry Fitzgerald out there. I couldn't help but think it was funny that Peter picked a game when Cleveland and Detroit played each other to pay attention to both teams. Maybe he wanted to kill two birds with one stone.

Baby steps...

ivn said...

keep an eye on this Patrick Willis guy, he could be as good as Tedy Bruschi someday! it is too bad that PK has such tunnel vision in his NFL coverage because he is missing out. speaking as someone who lives in an NFC West market it's not the strongest division in the league but there are plenty of exciting players. the Seahawks have at least two (Aaron "the bum who can't pass rush" Curry and Justin Forsett) who are worth watching each week plus Trufant who is one of the five best corners in the league, and Tatupu and Leroy Hill and so on. his coverage of the Lions seems to begin and end with Schwartz and Stafford even though Kevin Smith and Calvin Johnson are the only players on the team worth paying to see (they're why I went to the Lions-Seahawks game, at least) but now I'm rambling.

Meachem is fucking killing me this year. Brees will only throw to him once or twice a game and that usually takes a TD away from Colston.

Peter King doesn't have the patience to watch football with us proles when he can watch it from the ivory towers of NBC. don't you know he's on first name basis with Tony Dungy?

ivn said...

and how the fuck has a football writer not heard of Jeremiah Masoli before now? I guess one plus side to living in the PNW is that the Pac-10 has probably been the best conference to follow this year.

Bengoodfella said...

Ivn, I think that Patrick Willis guy may make a Pro Bowl or two. I tend to start defending guys on this blog and therefore become big fans of theirs and Aaron Curry is definitely one of those guys. I think it may take another year or two before the world discovers him, but he is going to be a great player.

It's interesting Forsett is going to be a good player because when he was at Cal I couldn't help but wonder why he wasn't going to be drafted higher. I liked him there. Peter really does miss out on some great players and I know it is sexier to talk about Stafford but Calvin Johnson had a badass day yesterday and he would be in a Pro Bowl if someone could get him the ball. Not to mention Brandon Pettigrew has shown some promise of late as well. There is talent out west, you just have to pay attention.

Meachem is killing everyone at this point. I started Devery Henderson in one league. Peter will not get down from that ivory tower anytime soon because he is very comfortable there.

Peter had mentioned a few months ago he doesn't get much of a chance to watch college football and I think that is a shame. I don't know how he evaluates players prior to the draft if he hasn't seen them play. That would be his excuse as to why he hasn't heard of Masoli...which is ridiculous in my mind. I know he is busy but Oregon is a very good football team that puts good players in the NFL. I have made fun of the Pac-10 in the past for being not great, but this year is an exception. They are pretty strong and any writer that doesn't watch college football is missing this.