Archive for the ‘NFL’ Category

Vikings release Randy Moss

November 1, 2010

Wow – that was fast. Read here. Here are some thoughts:

  • Did Moss go on some sort of private tirade in front of Childress last night – directed at Childress?
  • Had Moss been a thorn in Chilly’s side since day one (possible considering Moss came on as buddies with Favre…who can’t stand Childress)?
  • Were the Vikes just tired of all the drama, the lack of effort, the undermining comments after the game last night to the media?
  • Is Randy Moss not taking his meds…seriously?
  • Did Randy Moss just realize quickly that Brad Childress sucks – and so does playing for the Vikes?
  • What if he fell to the Packers through the waiver wire? Would he be worth the gamble? As much as I’m almost always a fan of exploring a potential player acquisition, and as much as he would help make our offense really tough to stop, he’s just not worth the gamble right now. Interestingly, if we were sitting at 3-5, I might feel differently, but not at 5-3 with some positive momentum.
  • Regardless of how it happened, it’s pretty funny that it happened.

UPDATE: Not sure how this escaped the final draft of this post, but my theory on what really happened was that Childress took his personal frustration out on Moss because Childress was trying to regain “control” of a team he’s lost control over (because of Favre). He wanted to assert himself as THE GUY. Just read this from PFT that supports this theory – seems more and more that Childress is that retail store manager with the store keys on a key chain around his arm trying to exert control over things he doesn’t really have control over.


Amazing punting stats

October 20, 2010

Just read that Mike Scifres, punter for SD, averages 49.5 yards a punt. He’s second in the NFL to Shane Lechler who averages an amazing 50.1 yards per punt. (Of course, I still think we should have given up a ton – and we would have had to – to pry Lechler away from Oak before he re-signed in the offseason. That Oak wins so infrequently with huge field position advantages speaks extra poorly of the rest of their team.) Anyway, Scifres bombs the ball every time he punts it – but due to SD’s horrendous special teams play, he ranks dead last in net average – AT 25.9!!! That is such a bad net average it’s unreal. But it’s particularly amazing when you’re talking about one of the best punters in the NFL w/respect to gross average year in and year out. While some might contend he’s out-kicking his coverage units etc – Scifres is generally considered one of the better punters w/re to hang-time, so this horrible stat should be pinned on SD’s special teams. San Diego’s special teams has already given up more punt return yards this year in 6 games than it had in the previous 32 games. Scifres has also had 3 punts blocked. Amazing. If punters were divas, Scifres would have asked for a trade this year to a team that could help preserve his legacy as one of the game’s better punters. (For sake of comparison, Shane Lechler’s net average this year: a sick 45.6. If the Packers had Shane Lechler – I’m pretty sure we’d have another victory or two.)

Some not so surprising news about punter Pat McAfee

October 20, 2010

Read here for background on the arrest of Indy punter Pat McAfee. Several thoughts:

  1. This isn’t surprising at all. Check out this picture of him. Whenever I see him punting on TV, my immediate thought is that the guy doesn’t look like an NFL player – he looks more like a surfer. Reminds me of Jeff Spicoli.
  2. He only  blew a .15 yet he had his clothes off, was swimming in some canal and he could barely stand? Lightweight.
  3. Given the NFL’s concerning focus under Roger Goodell of cracking down on absolutely everything, I’ve heard McAfee faces a 4 year ban. (In the old NFL, he would have been banned too – for being a lightweight.)

watching perhaps the worst MNF game ever

September 13, 2010

Between Mark Sanchez mistakenly thinking adrenaline and positive energy will carry the day and John Harbaugh/Cam Cameron running the same ridiculous push plays from their own 1 or 2 where they always are – I may not be able to watch the rest of this game. Unreal.

Fantastic old man injury

September 13, 2010

Check out coach Mike Smith’s old man injury here.

2010 NFL Season Predictions

September 13, 2010

I thought I had already posted this but I guess I had only given picks from a few divisions.  So, here are my picks for 2010.

  • AFC East: NE (11-5); Mia (9-7); NYJ (8-8); Buff (4-12)
  • AFC North: Balt (12-4); Pitt (10-6); Cleve (8-8); Cincy (6-10)
  • AFC South: Hou (11-5); Indy (9-7); Tenn (8-8); Jax (7-9)
  • AFC West: KC (10-6); SD (8-8); Den (6-10); Oak (6-10)

For the Playoffs in the AFC, I have Mia (#6) over New England (#3) and Pitt (#5) over KC (#4) in the wildcard round. Then Hou (#2) over Pitt (#5) and Balt (#1) over Mia (#6). Balt edges Hou to win the AFC Championship.

  • NFC East: Dal (11-5); Wash (10-6); Phil (7-9); NYG (7-9)
  • NFC North: Pack (12-4); Chic (10-6); MN (7-9); Det (6-10)
  • NFC West: AZ (10-6); Sea (8-8); SF (8-8); StL (5-11)
  • NFC South: Atl (11-5); NO (9-7); TB (7-9); Car (5-11)

For the Playoffs in the NFC, I have Dal (#3) over Chic (#6) and Wash (#5) over AZ (#4) for the wildcard round. Then Atl (#2) over Wash (#5), Pack (#1) over Dal (#3). And finally I have the Packers over the Falcons for the NFC Championship.

Packers beat the Ravens in the Super Bowl.

Fumbling remedy?

September 7, 2010

It’s interesting how often I seem to read about a guy having fumbling issues being put through a bunch of drills to help him hold onto the ball better. On one level, it seems to make sense: if there is a problem, raise awareness of the issue, seek some help, do some drills,  and try to overcome it.

But I’m just not sure I like this approach for fumbling. I just read the following from a Clark Judge article at about Adrian Peterson’s fumbling problem:

Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota: He has the strongest handshake on earth, yet he hasn’t figured out to hold on to the football. Not yet, at least, and I don’t get it. Neither do the Vikings, who put Peterson through all sorts of ball-security drills this summer, hoping to reduce or eliminate the yips that plagued him and the Vikings in last year’s conference championship game. “Really,” said Peterson, who fumbled seven times during the regular season, “my thing is all mental. On the majority of my fumbles, I’m going down and I find myself putting the ball out and bracing myself. So I just have to be more cautious about that, and keep it high and tight.” Peterson is a marvelous back, one of the two best in the game, but he must clean up the fumbling for Minnesota to go forward.

Again, putting a guy through “all sorts of ball security drills” may seem to most like a perfectly valid thing to do when a guy has a fumbling problem. But I’d take a different approach – an approach that may seem to run in the face of what I do professionally (counseling/workplace consulting). I would stop talking about it completely. I wouldn’t put the RB through special drills, make him carry a ball around with him everywhere (like some coaches have done) or any of the other contrived methods. I would simply say at the beginning of spring camp “hey, don’t fumble so much this year”. Thereafter, not a word.

Sometimes I think it can be a bad thing for some folks, if they become overly aware of a weakness. It can be mentally debilitating. Adrian Peterson and other fumblers know they have a fumbling problem. They know that their fumbling hurts their respective teams. So why pound it home? If they have a fumbling problem in the first place, they are probably a bit mentally rattled already – as Peterson essentially notes above. Further rattling won’t help. To be clear, I’m not saying this because I think ball-security drills are harsh for players etc – not at all. I just think that in order to curb the fumbling problem, it would be smarter to not say much of anything.

(For the Packers’ sake, I hope Peterson becomes so overly conscious of fumbling he just runs around as fast as Lynn Dickey with 2 arms around the ball the whole time, or that he just falls down before tacklers come to get him – like Favre did for Strahan.)

Packer fever at as well…

September 7, 2010

Check this out. 7 of the 9 experts picked the Packers to be in the Super Bowl, and 3 of those 7 picked the Pack to win it. Perhaps just as interesting, 8 of the 9 experts picked Aaron Rodgers as the likely MVP winner.

Noticed that a number of experts have come around to my way of thinking on the Vikings now. (Read here for more info on why I think the Vikes may have been better off without Favre this year.) I know a fair number of them read Packergeeks with their morning coffee. Just kidding. But there has definitely been quite a shift of opinion re the Vikes I think mostly because folks are concerned re Favre’s ankle and also about the absence of Sidney Rice. Both will be factors, but neither will compare to the psychological element that will bring Favre/ the Vikes down (again, read previous post for more).

I do also have to say that I agree with those experts who think Baltimore will be good this year, likely Super Bowl good. I think adding TJ Housh could make them scary good. Housh is kind of an idiot, he’s lost speed and was not that good for Seattle. But when he’s added into a mix that includes Anquan Boldin, Derrick Mason, a healthy Todd Heap and Ray Rice, Flacco is going to have plenty of targets – and they already have a very good running game. This will be a good team – and a great one once Ed Reed returns.

I also am starting to get the feeling that this year could be an odd one in the NFL – with different-than-recent teams getting to the playoffs (like Oak or the KC Chiefs, Miami, Houston, Seattle or SF).

Pressure mounting…

September 7, 2010

Check this out from USA Today – 5 of their 8 staff writers pick the Packers to win the Super Bowl. Several of you have noted the increasing amount of positive press the Packers have received heading into the season. Lots of the expert types are picking the Pack to win the Super Bowl. Normally, I would be a bit concerned about it – will the players be able to handle the weight of expectation? will they keep their heads? and just as importantly, how will the coaching staff respond to this kind of pressure?

So far, I like the way the team has responded to this pressure. It seems the players may have been given the “OK” to simply address questions about expectations head on – instead of offering up the usual cliche crap like “we’re only focused on the Philly game”. Really, since the team regrouped this spring, it seems to me that generally, the players have not avoided questions about expectations. After the Family Night scrimmage for example, Jermichael Finley and a few others talked very directly about the expectations indicating that the team has the same expectations and the team believes they belong in the Super Bowl. McCarthy must be coaching the guys up to believe that these are not unrealistic expectations and I really like this. There seems to be a message floating around Lambeau that players/coaches ought to embrace this goal publicly rather than avoid it at all costs.

For some reason, I suspect that one guy who may be behind this head-on approach to managing expectations may be Dom Capers. I think Capers, a veteran coach who has seen a lot throughout his NFL coaching career, may be encouraging this open attitude about expectations in part because he knows on one side of the ball, he has a QB who can handle it mentally and on the other side, he has a veteran leader who can handle it mentally – and who wants it so badly (Woodson). One thing that will continue to impress people in the next 3-4 years in particular, is just how strong Aaron Rodgers is mentally. I’m not quite sure the same open approach toward expectations would have been encouraged if we had a different QB.

Remember WR Mike Williams?

September 3, 2010

One very intriguing story from this preseason has been the coming-out-of-nowhereness, if you will, of WR Mike Williams – former first round pick out of USC who failed to catch on with the Lions, Titans and Raiders. He has landed in Seattle where former college coach Pete Carroll has probably given him an extra opportunity to make the team. In a recent report I read, he may not only make the team, but some say he may start opposite TJ Housh (unless Housh gets traded…there are rumors…).

Are you kidding me? That Mike Williams? Starting in the NFL? He was even out of football for a year or two I believe! Actually, the truth is, I’m not that surprised. I can’t remember watching a guy in college with better hands. Mike Williams to this day, still has one of the most impressive catches I have ever seen (can’t find the youtube video of it – but it was a one handed snag for a TD in massive traffic). The Lions were roundly criticized for taking another receiver when they picked Williams a few years ago – I was one of few who didn’t think it was that bad of a pick. The guy is immensely talented and I’m not sure why he didn’t make it before.

Perhaps it’s a mental/emotional/maturity thing, not sure. But for those of you in fantasy circles – keep an eye on him, Pete Carroll could make him good again.