We’re officially halfway through the season, wow time flies when you’re having fun! There is a much better idea of where teams stand than there was 2 months ago, and most fans know whether the outlook on their season is half full, or half empty. Still some major surprises, but it will be fun to see how the next 2 months play out.
Hail to the Chiefs (not in a racist way):
Last week FMQB swooned over the Kansas City Chiefs surprise rise to greatness. Well they made it to 8-0 this week, in a squeaker of a win over Cleveland and their 3rd string QB. Looking at their schedule, here is who the Chiefs have beaten: Jaguars, Cowboys, Eagles, Giants, Titans, Raiders, Texans, and Browns…none of which have a winning record. With 5 of their last 8 games against winning teams, it will be interesting to see whether their top defense and best record is because of they are legit, or because of their schedule.
Stat of the Week:
It took 2 weeks from Calvin Johnson to go from #42 in reception yards, to #1
A Tale of Two Primetimes:
The first primetime game was easily one of the better ones of the season between Denver and Indianapolis. Not only was Peyton Manning returning to Indy for the first time, but it was 2 strong teams and 1 undefeated record. First off, loved seeing the tribute to Manning before the game. It looked like Peyton truly stopped to enjoy the moment, the fans were great to him, and it almost made you want to cry. And then the most hyped regular season game that you can remember started. Overall great game. Surprised that Indy was able to play very strong defense against Manning for the 2 middle quarters, which led them to a 19 point lead going into the 4th. Even with Manning struggling, you felt that the crowd was nervous, because only Manning could pull off this comeback. And he almost did! Denver pulled within 6 points with 7 minutes left. Even with an interception, and then a long drive with no points because of a fumble, Denver still had a chance. If that’s what it seriously takes to beat Denver, then the rest of the league is in trouble.
The second primetime game had to average out the excitement created from the night before, because this was by far the worst game I have ever seen (except maybe that hurricane game in Miami where I think the Steelers won 3-0?). The Giants looked completely inept, dropping 3 sure TD’s in the endzone. The revived Peyton Hillis was by far the best player on the field, and that’s truly saying something since he averaged 2.0 yards per carry! I’ll discuss Freeman soon, but that was the worst performance I’ve ever seen from a QB, hands down. The Vikings failed to score on offense, in fact only getting past the 50 yard line twice. All the Giants had to do was put 10 guys in the box to stop Peterson, because there was no way that Freeman was going to beat them with his arm.
Valiant Attempt Sir Thad:
The Bills have had a rough season so far with injuries, especially at the quarterback position. With EJ Manuel’s injury, and Kolb out for the season with a concussion, the Bills had to sign Thad Lewis from their practice squad. This is usually a recipe for disaster, especially against a playoff team, but Lewis rose to the occasion, throwing two 4th quarter touchdowns to take the game into overtime. The Bills may have lost, but Lewis had a surprisingly good game, completing 60% of his throws and zero INTs.
The Patriots didn’t win, the Saints lost it:
Game of the day was definitely the squeeker between the Patriots and undefeated Saints. The Pats were up by 6 late in the 4th quarter, until Brees threw a bomb to whoever Kenny Stills is for a TD. I’m still baffled with what happened next, and let me paint the picture why. The Patriots would get the ball back with 3:29 in the game, down by 1 with 2 timeouts. Should be plenty of time for a game winning drive. But the Pats got more than 1 chance, they even got more than 2 chances, somehow with 3:29 left in the game, the Saints had the ball twice and the Patriots 3 times! It is inexplicable that the Saints can’t run that time off the clock with 5 possessions! Back to 3:29, the Patriots went 4 and out. Saints run twice, throw (incomplete, stops the clock) and kick a field goal to go up by 4. The Patriots then throw an INT right away (all Saints coaches start celebrating, keep this in mind). Saints then go 3 and out, but at least they’re running it! Pats get the ball with 1:13 with no timeouts and 70 yards to go. This also shouldn’t be possible, yet Brady drives the field with a shot at the endzone. With 5 seconds left, somehow Kenbrell Thompkins gets behind the defender in the endzone (the only place he can go) for the touch down. For a different angle of it, click here. Keep in mind, if Saints had run it on that play 2 series ago instead of pass, the Pats wouldn’t have that 5 seconds. The reason for the huge Saints turnaround is coaching, but coaching lost them this game and their chance to stay undefeated. Continue Reading
Bit of a longer post today, but with the season in full swing, I have a lot to say. I would like to apologize ahead of time for the dissertation, as well as all the Broncos talk…
What’s Going on in Cleveland?
I’m truly confused with what’s going on in Cleveland. They started 0-2, and decided to trade away Trent Richardson (they traded up for him last year, easily their best player). They have since gone 3-0, which is great. Well they just lost Brian Hoyer for the season, which is a huge disappointment. But 2 days after this happens, they start shopping around Josh Gordon their #1 Receiver. The Browns are tied for 1st in their division, but it’s like they’re stockpiling draft picks for next year already. Why are they trying to throw the season?
Brady Hits a Wall:
Have we found the new DiMaggio record for the NFL? As readers remember, there is a slew of QB’s who didn’t even come close to Johnny Unitas’ record of 48 straight games with a TD pass. Brees passed this record last year, but only by a few games to reach 54 straight games. Tom Brady was the only other QB close enough to pass it, and his streak ended at 52 games on Sunday. To put this into perspective, this means that Brady threw a TD pass in every game since late 2009. As I mentioned last year, all it takes is one fluke game where your RB gets 3 TD’s instead, or a crappy weather game like last week. But I find it hard to believe we will see any QB’s get close to this record anytime soon. Continue Reading
FMQB Has some Big News! In case nobody has noticed yet, I’ll see if you can figure it out and let you know later in the blog. It was kind of a weird week of games last Sunday with unheard of rules and lackluster games. The lineup didn’t look great, but there always seems to be some good games that surprise people. But not this week. Only 2 (maybe 3) games ended up being truly worth watching. Ironically each game involved 4th quarter comebacks by more than 10 (of which only 1 team completed the comeback).
Don’t Call it a Comeback:
The first comeback of the day was the Steelers vs. Vikings game. The Vikings dominated all day, and for an 0-4 team, was looking pretty sharp. But the Steelers held the Vikings scoreless for the last 20 minutes of the game while their offense scored 10. Making it to a 1st and Goal situation, the Vikings defense held, forced a fumble and won.
The Second comeback could also be considered a major meltdown. The Texans were beating the undefeated Seahawks 20-3 at halftime, and would go on to not score in the 2nd half and lose the game. The Texans were up 20-6 with 7 minutes remaining before the Seahawks finally scored their first TD. Then with 2:40 left in the game, Schaub was heaving up a prayer that got picked off by Richard Sherman (now to be referred to as “Shoeless Sherman” since he outran the Texans with only one shoe). First off, why are the Texans throwing in that situation? Even if the Seahawks have timeouts, your D has stopped them all day! Instead the game was quickly tied up and Houston would go on to lose in OT.
The Third comeback happened in the Sunday Night game, where it was 30-13 with 6 minutes left. Normally the game is over, but I stayed up to watch the end just to get some extra football in for the week. Boy was I glad I did! Atlanta scored 10 quick points, got an onside kick, and held the Patriots to give the Falcons one last shot. They made it within 10 yards AGAIN, but lost 30-23 in another thriller. Continue Reading
Let me ask a legitimate question, are we ever going to have a bad Super Bowl game again?!?! I’m not sure we’ve seen one in the past decade! The last blowout game I can remember was the Buccaneers vs Raiders game in 2003, but let’s face it, that game is still causing excitement (ahem, Mr. Bill Callahan). Otherwise, every single game has come down to the fourth quarter, most of them the final drive, and even some the final play! After the first play of the 2nd half (Kickoff return for TD), I began to get disappointed as I could tell this was becoming a blowout and we wouldn’t get an exciting game. But apparently the SuperDome “wasn’t ready for this jelly,” and the lights fizzled out just a few minutes after Beyonce’s performance. Or it could have been the 49ers fan who worked at Entergy. Either way, they went out and all momentum for the Ravens was killed and they wouldn’t score another TD in the final 28 minutes. The 49ers did what they do best, and mounted a valiant comeback only to fall short. Let’s dive into the game a bit more: Continue Reading
Interesting Thought of the Week:
The only rookie QB to win a playoff game wasn’t the #1 or #2 overall pick who came in as the “savior of the franchise.”
Interesting Thought of the Week #2:
Adrian Peterson ran for 405 yards in 2 games against the Packers during the season. Analysts across the league said that they successfully “Shut Down” AP on Saturday. He had 99 yards at 4.5 yards per carry! Now there’s a testament to how good he is if that’s considered being “shut down.” For the record, if AP was “shut down” for 16 games a season, he would have a 1584 yard season. Continue Reading