Big weekend in sports coming up. NLCS, ALCS, NFL, College Football, BCS implications, Rivalries, Cross-town Rival High School Games (somewhere probably), tailgating, etc. Lot of action. Lot. Of. Action.
Did you know Kate Hudson’s dad, Kurt Russell, was a pretty good minor league baseball player before blowing apart his shoulder and returning to his acting career?
So that’s baseball. It’s also a huge weekend in the NFL.
Spotlight on New Orleans where the undefeated Saints play the undefeated New York Giants. It bothers me when radio and TV people say it’s going to be Drew Brees versus Eli Manning. It’s not. Brees and Manning will never be on the field at the same time until they do a man hug at the end of the game.
In the college game this weekend USC travels to South Bend to play Notre Dame. Jimmy Clausen and Matt Barkley are another QB vs QB favorite match-up for the guys in the studios. So is Sam Bradford vs Colt McCoy when the Oklahoma Sooners and Texas Longhorns go at in the Red River Rivalry. Those two teams love each other.
Boise State already narrowly survived Tulsa and Cincinnati took care of South Florida to keep the hopes of BCS haters alive that someone outside of the Big Ten, Pac-10, SEC, Big 12, or ACC will make a run at the Championship Game.
Tim Tebow is probably receiving accolades somewhere, too.
It is a big weekend for sports. October is a terrible month for marriages and TV remote control control. This is my first October as a married guy. I think it will be important to set a precedent for future years that the MLB playoffs and the NFL and big college football games will be watched. So when I lose this battle, somebody please be prepared to link me to some highlights and provide detailed and accurate recaps.
It was a feast or famine week in the NFL for most teams in Week 5. Some teams looked great in victory, some looked ugly in victory and some looked truly disastrous in defeat.
I hope you found that Miles Austin and Jeremy Maclin were available when you checked to see if they were on the waiver wire in your fantasy leagues this morning. And I also hope that you are in last place so you can pick one of them up or that the guy who is in last place has already given up and hasnâ€™t checked his team since drafting Matt Forte second overall and starting the year 0-3.
Miles Austin caught a few passes and then ran all over, through, and aroundthe Kansas City Chief defense for 250 yards receiving on Sunday. Covering Austin must not have been high on Mike Vrabelâ€™s to-do list this week when he and a few other Chief veterans took over practice after Head Coach Todd Haley pulled his coaching staff off the field because he was so frustrated with how poorly the team was practicing. Also not high on the Chief to-do list: tackling, taking the proper angle of pursuit, running fast, Gatorade baths for the coach.
Austin and the KC D made Tony Romoâ€™s day. He just had to lob it out there and then sit back and watch his passing yards run down the field to an overtime win. Not a bad way to go. It sure beats trying to jam a ball into Sam Hurd with Champ Bailey covering him in the end zone on the last play of the game.
Haley chose to kick the PAT after Matt Cassel drove his team down the field for a TD with less than a minute remaining. Had he opted to go for 2 and been successful, the story today would have been a) Tom Bradyâ€™s former backup rallying his team late in the game and leading to them victory b) Tony Romo is terribleâ€¦blah blah blahâ€¦The Cowboys are terribleâ€¦TO somehowâ€¦Thereâ€™s a huge screen in Dallasâ€¦Jerry Jonesâ€¦Jessica Simpsonâ€¦Wade Philips. But, Haley kicked it and then lost in OT so now we talk about Austin.
Do the bad teams in the NFL look worse than usual this season? Maybe that is just a thought that has been rattling around my brain the last few weeks. But it sure was reinforced and highlighted by these six games:
The six favorites (also the six teams who won) had a combined record of 20-5 coming into the weekend and the underdogs (the losers on Sunday) had a combine record of 2-22. The only favored team of those six playing at home was the Giants. After the weekend the winners are 26-5 and the losers are 2-28.
I would like to say that the Buffalo and Cleveland defenses were just so stout and beat up on each other so hard they held the offenses to a 6-3 final score, but thatâ€™s not remotely the case. Derek Anderson played the complete game on Sunday and completed only 2 of his 17 passesâ€¦ and his team won! Thatâ€™s about the same as when in pool you have all of your balls left on the table and your opponent scratches on the 8 ball to lose. You didnâ€™t deserve to win, but you did.
2-17! This is the guy to whom Brady Quinn lost his job. When I was checking on my fantasy team Sunday afternoon, I was convinced that that stat must have been a typo or a mistake. No way can an NFL QB in a NFL offense with NFL wide receivers complete only 2 of 17 passes.
Also perplexing was that Oakland only threw the ball 13 times while getting trounced by the Giants 44-7. Coach Tom Cable clearly has more confidence in his right cross than he does in JaMarcus Russell. Keep in mind also that the team was playing without Darren McFadden at running back.
The Minnesota Vikings avoided faltering against a weak team after two back-to-back thrilling weeks. They jumped out to a 14-0 lead on St. Louis in the first half of the first quarter. Adrian Peterson scored twice, Brett Favre threw for a touchdown pass, and Jared Allen recovered two fumbles, returning one for a TD. Favre turned 40 last week and joins some punters and kickers in the 40+ club. Percy Harvin led the Vikings in receiving. Ram WR Donnie Avery scored a TD in the 4th on a pass from Kyle Boller to bring the Rams within 28 points and then celebrated with a solo dance in the end zone. His teammates apparently werenâ€™t up for a TD dance down 28 points. Steven Jackson went for 84 yards on 21 carries but still hasnâ€™t found the end zone yet this season.
Marc Bulger returned late in the game after Boller left with an injury. Bulgerâ€™s return to the field and the fact that Boller started again when Bulger was ready to play should create something of a QB controversy in St. Louis. The bigger controversy in St. Louis though is Rush Limbaughâ€™s bid to buy the Rams. Most shocking about this story is that someone actually wants to buy the St. Louis Rams.
Matt Hasselbeck returned from injury to throw for 4 TDâ€™s in a Seattle Seahawk beat down of the Jacksonville Jaguars. I donâ€™t get the Jags. They nearly beat the Colts in Week 1, then lost to Arizona in Week 2. They beat Houston and Tennessee after that to get to 2-2 and make people think that maybe they could put together a respectable season. Then they didnâ€™t show up at all on Sunday and lost 41-0. Their season is kind of like the acting career of John Cusack. They won a few games, but other than that itâ€™s been ugly. There was Say Anything, Being John Malkovich, and High Fidelity, and then there was everythingthat happened after that. In case you havenâ€™t seen 20 or 30 previews for it, he is in a disaster movie (pun may or may not be intended) about the world ending in 2012. So donâ€™t sweat not getting the Olympics in 2016, Chicago, they wouldnâ€™t have happened anyway.
Despite taking the loss, Jet fans have to be a little bit excited about Braylon Edwards and his 64 yards and 1 TD effort after being on the team for about 100 or so hours. Mark Sanchez should benefit from having that threat line up next to him in the coming weeks.
I was sitting with my wife watching a football game a few weeks ago and she was noticing that a lot of guys pat each other on the butt after a play or on the sideline. She found it strange and asked me why. I said I didnâ€™t know, itâ€™s just what guys do on the football field. This is an aspect of the game that goes unquestioned and mostly unnoticed. But what does not go unquestioned or unnoticed is Bill Belichekâ€™s hugging habits after and before games.
Has any manâ€™s hugs or handshakes been more analyzed and scrutinized than Bill Belichickâ€™s? The talking heads on TV and the voices on the radio love talking about how this man hugs other men. First it was Eric Mangini and the hugs or handshakes after games when the Jets played the Patriots. This year it is the hug that Belichick shared with Bronco Head Coach Josh McDaniels before the game and the hug that they did not share after the game.
Is he sincere enough at the traditional mid-field Head Coaches handshake/man hug after every game? Does he blow them off? What kind of hug is it? Who does he hug and who doesnâ€™t he hug?
I have a better question. Who cares? This is the sports equivalent to celebrity tabloids reporting an encounter between two rival heiresses at a Hollywood night club. Apparently both men and women love a good soap opera.
Josh McDaniels has taken over a volatile situation in Denver with a quarterback who looks like he dropped out of Stillwater. He reigned in Brandon Marshall and started the season 5-0 after beating his mentor and the New England Patriots. Tom Brady had a costly and uncharacteristic late game fumble. Randy Moss caught only one ball and it was an interception on a hail mary at the end of the first half.
Here’s a post from a new writer we have here at the blog. Check it out below.
Hi, I’m Dan Bressler and I’ll be writing from time to time here on the blog. I’m a senior at Bradley University and I interned at FansEdge this summer. Let’s get right to it.
The NFL offseason moves always intrigued me. Franchise players revitalize the fanbases of some teams and long time favorites have to transition to new roles with other teams. Millions of dollars are tossed around from coast to coast trying to attract big names. Most importantly, the offseason is the time where losing teams become playoff contenders. Remember when the New Orleans Saints were one of the worst teams in the NFL, only to sign stars like Drew Brees, Reggie Bush, and Marques Colston and became a force to be reckoned with?
Here are 5 offseason moves I find will significantly impact teams in the NFL for the 2009-2010 season and beyond. These players could even be a boost to your fantasy team, with improved individual stats over last season.
1) Atlanta Falcons sign TE Tony Gonzalez: Gonzalez is one of the most talented tight ends â€“ no, one of the most talented football players on the field today. Spending all of his 11 NFL seasons in Kansas City, he became well known as an above-average blocker and a reliable receiver. Tony Gonzalez is a leader on the field, and will be a great mentor to second year QB Matt Ryan. He will be another offensive weapon defenses have to worry about, in addition to the WR pair of Roddy White & Michael Jenkins, and RB breakout Michael Turner. Gonzalez is an improvement to an already stellar offensive line and will serve as a forceful blocker.
2) Chicago Bears sign QB Jay Cutler: From the ashes of the highly public conflict between Jay Cutler and new head coach Josh McDaniels, the Chicago Bears come out of nowhere to trade their ho-hum QB Kyle Orton to Denver for the promising Jay Cutler. Cutler has only been in the league for 3 years, but on skills alone, he is considered among the best at his position. He passed for over 4,500 yards last season and threw for 25TDs, stats that were among the elite NFL QBs. He led the team to an improved 8-8 record and created superstar status for Eddie Royal and Brandon Marshall. His popularity exploded, and he earned a roster spot on the Pro-Bowl. By moving from one team famous for cold weather and famous running backs to another team famous for cold weather and famous running backs, Cutler should have no difficulty adjusting to Chicago. Donâ€™t expect another 4,500 passing yard season just yet, but the Bears will gain a confident, talented leader in Cutler â€“ attributes missing from their previous quarterbacks within the last decade or two.
3) Philadelphia Eagles sign QB Michael Vick: One NFL team had to gamble on Vick, and the Philadelphia Eagles decided to roll the dice. Fans may have been confused as to why the Eagles signed Vick, but to me, this is a smart move by the team. Their franchise quarterback, Donovan McNabb, has only been able to play for a full 16 regular-season games in only four out of his ten NFL seasons. As immensely talented and as a great individual McNabb is, he is severely injury-prone, which creates a possible risk for his team to miss the playoffs in 2009. If McNabb goes down, Vick will lead the team with comparable skills. The Eagles missed out on Matt Cassel, Jay Cutler, Jeff Garcia, and others to backup McNabb. And while Vick may not have the speed he once had in 2006, he may have the arm and the field awareness to lead his new Eagles team to the playoffs if necessary. Furthermore, McNabb has publically supported and vouched for Michael Vick to join the team, which reduces potential conflict and preserves team chemistry.
4) Washington Redskins sign DL Albert Haynesworth and re-sign CB DeAngelo Hall: Remember how I mentioned that offseason moves can cause a losing team to become playoff contenders? In 2009, the Washington Redskins may very well be an example of exactly that, and it could be defense that leads this team. Haynesworth may present an off-field problem, but his on-field performance shines: 8.5 sacks and 3 forced fumbles last season. DeAngelo Hall only played 7 games with the Redskins, but had 25 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 8 pass deflections. Hall became a viable defensive back for the team, and made for an easy re-sign. Haynesworth and Hall join current a Redskins defense with fierce players including London Fletcher, Fred Smoot, and Carlos Rodgers.
5) Cincinnati Bengals sign WR Laveranues Coles: When opposing defenses would play the Bengals, CBs and LBs would hone in on the speedy Chad Ochocinco, providing the No. 2 WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh with single coverage that lead to a big year in 2008 and a free agency move to Seattle this season. Ochocincoâ€™s mouth is still enormous, but there was a void in the Bengals offense that needed to complement #85. Enter Laveranues Coles. Heâ€™s not a superstar WR, but he is a veteran playmaker, healthy enough to consistently start games for the team and be an above-average receiver. Team defenses may struggle to contain both Ochocinco and Coles, and a healthy Carson Palmer will have improved numbers with this new WR addition. Expect Coles to catch around 7-9TDs, catch 85 passes, and have over 800 receiving yards this upcoming season.
Other players not mentioned include new Chiefs QB Matt Cassel and Bills WR Terrell Owens. Torry Holt has moved on from his greatest show on turf days to help the Jaguars get back to the playoffs and Jets rookie QB Mark Sanchez has a chance to be a difference maker.
Do you agree or disagree with my picks? Care to give your top 5 great NFL offseason moves of 2009? Send a comment below! Letâ€™s enjoy another great NFL seasonâ€¦
We learned some things in week 12 in the NFL. We learned that the New York Giants are definitely the best team in the NFL and barring some unforeseen calamity, should be able to maybe not walk, but most certainly jog into the Super Bowl.