Monday, November 15, 2010

NFL week 10 round up

What the hell happened? My picks didn't just fail, they largely bombed. Let's have a look back at the action from Sunday of Week 10: Detroit Lions 12 @ Buffalo Bills 14: Erm. Uh. Just. What? I honestly thought the Lions had this one wrapped up. I couldn't see how Buffalo's line was going to stand up to the punishment that the Lions pass rush was sure to dish out. But in the end the Lions mustered just one sack and the offense just one touchdown. Shaun Hill completed just a little over half of his 50 passes, as the Lions line fails once more to generate anything resembling a rushing lane. Meanwhile the Bills turned it on its head, with Fred Jackson carrying 25 times for 133 yards and a TD, plus another TD receiving. With LB Paul Posluszny holding up the defense with 11 tackles, it was a great win for the Bills that stops them going winless for the season. Minnesota Vikings 13 @ Chicago Bears 27: From a 400+ yard game to 170 yards and 3 interceptions for Brett Favre. The bad side of the gunslinger returned again against Chicago and it cost them dearly. That, coupled with just 51 yards from 17 carries for Adrian Peterson. That, coupled with some appalling coverage play on special teams. That, coupled with the Vikings defense generating just one sack against probably the worst offensive line in football. If it's not one thing with the Vikings then it's about ten others. Cutler even tried to give the game back by throwing 2 interceptions to go with the three TD passes, but there's just no helping some people. New York Jets 26 @ Cleveland Browns 20: You have to feel for the Browns. So close. So unbelievably close to putting away the Jets. But costly errors in overtime hurt them. A fumble when they were nearly in field goal range. An interception that pinned them against their own goal line (as opposed to a bat down) and then not running enough time off the clock and instead trying to fight their way out of a desperately tight hole. Credit to the Browns though for their last gasp (in regulation) score that saw Colt McCoy (watch list) lead his team down the field and into overtime. Cincinnati Bengals 17 @ Indianapolis Colts 23: If you're on the Bengals defense then you have to be upset, no question about it. They held Manning to 185 yards off of 36 throws (20 complete). And they still lost the game. Three interceptions by Carson Palmer -- including one returned for a TD -- really hurt the Bengals, as did a late fumble by Jermaine Gresham. But after the game most of the fingers being pointed at the Bengals by the press seem to be pointed at Terrell Owens. Which I just don't get. I know he had a bad game himself, but so far this year he's been the offensive star in Cincinnati. He's kind of entitled to have a bad game now and again. Oh wait, I've just remembered why they're picking on him... because that's what people in the media always do. T.O. makes a good, quotable scapegoat that everyone can blame while nodding sagely. And it stinks, a lot like Carson Palmer. Houston Texans 24 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 31: The Texans thought their luck was in. They benefited from the phantom "second act" provision that seems to have been inserted into the rules regarding receivers going to the ground (check, it's not anywhere in the written rules). This provided them with a game tying TD and then when Josh Scobee shanked a long field goal try, they must have been thinking that god was smiling on them for a change. But then they fumbled the ball away and on their final drive the Jaguars took a shot with 3 seconds left on the clock. The ball sailed damn near 6o yards, arcing into the end zone only for Glover Quin to leap up and knock it down.... right into the grasp of Mike Thomas. Having overcome the shock of making the catch Thomas walked into the end zone to win a cracker of a game. Matt Schaub finished 22/32 for 314 yards and 2 Touchdowns. David Garrard matched him punch for punch with 24/31 for 342 yards and 2 Touchdowns of his own. Maurice Jones-Drew had 24 carries for 100 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground, which makes a change for the Jags to actually lean on their run game a little. Tennessee Titans 17 @ Miami Dolphins 29: Wait, no fair!! What happened to Pennington? You can't just go down on the second throw and come out injured! That's against the unwritten law of football picks! So Chad Henne enters and surprise, surprise he puts up 19/28 for 240 yards, a TD and an INT. See! I told you there was nothing wrong with him! Until of course he got injured prior to the start of the 4th quarter and the Dolphins are forced to break out the Wildcat (what was it I'm always saying about sticking to what you do well). And so finally it falls to Tyler Thigpen (fan, right here). 4/6, 64 yards and a TD. Thank you and goodnight everyone! What do you mean "What about the Titans?". Kerry Collins is an old back up for a reason. 9/20 for 51 yards is a very good indication of that reason. So he gets injured.... just walking. And on comes Vince Young (who I was led to believe was injured). 9/18 for 92 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT. So what about Chris Johnson? You know, that super fast running back you have? 17 carries. 17. For 117 yards and a TD (longest; 30). Are the Titans even trying to win the division? Carolina Panthers 16 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31: The Panthers lost? Good. Screw the Panthers. Pleased to see Carolina RB Mike Goodson get 23 carries, which he took for 100 yards (longest; 18). But other than that, hooray for the Buccaneers who now improve to 6-3. Josh Freeman was efficient, completing 18/24 for 241 yards and 2 touchdowns. RB LaGarrette Blount (a steal after being cut by the Titans after pre-season) had 19 carries for 91 yards and a TD. Even Cadillac Williams got in on the act with 5 carries for 62 yards (longest; 45) and a TD. 10 penalties for 80 yards? Not so good. But it's points on the board and numbers in the win column that matter, so the Buc's are just fine right now. Kansas City Chiefs 29 @ Denver Broncos 49: Have to say, love the way that NFL Gameday on NFL network managed to condense the highest scoring game of the weekend down into just over a minute of highlights. What the hell? Just because Favre or Manning isn't playing in the game? (Cowboys/Giants got 4:54. Media market bias?). Last year I remember their highlight segments being more in depth and we used to get the highlights with radio calls on (they're gone to, which is shame because they were even longer and certainly more interesting to watch). Still, moving on. This is why I currently hate the Broncos and Josh McDaniels. Where has all this been each week when I picked the Broncos? I've picked them so many times this year, safe in the knowledge that they have a good QB and they have a good team overall. But they wait until I pick against them and then suddenly explode! Even Knowshon Moreno got a look in with 22 carries for 106 yards (longest; 14). You kind of have to feel sorry though for Matt Cassel and Dwayne Bowe. 22/53 for 469 yards and 4 TDs, with Bowe making 13 catches for 186 yards and 2 TDs. Any other game and people would be staring in wide eyed wonder at these numbers. This game? It barely registers due to the Broncos score. All people know is that Tim Tebow (watch list) ran for a TD and threw another, his first passing TD in the NFL. You just can't get the love these days. Seattle Seahawks 36 @ Arizona Cardinals 18: And it wasn't even that close. If Seattle could have converted some of those drives that ended in short field goals, they might have put 50 on the Cardinals. Hasselbeck went 22/34 for 33 yards and a TD, with Justin Forsett and Marshawn Lynch punching in two more. The star of the game was possibly Seahawks WR Mike Williams who had 11 receptions for 145 yards. The Seahawks defense also stood up to be counted. LB Aaron Curry (remember him?) finally tapped some of his potential to lead his team in tackles with 7, as well as registering two sacks and a forced fumble. Chris Clemons added two more sacks and Lawyer Milloy scored the fifth. Dallas Cowboys 33 @ New York Giants 20: Cost of the New Meadowlands stadium: $1 billion. Cost of the lights going partially out during a game and making you look like asses: priceless. Worse, watching John Kitna put up 327 yards and 3 TDs (1 INT) from just 13/22. Meanwhile Eli Manning went to the air 48 times and completed 33 for 373 yards, 2 TDs, but also 2 INTs. It was a true battle of the aerial beasts as Dez Bryant (3 catches, 104 yards, TD) lead the Cowboys receivers against the Giants in a "who can pull off the most spectacular catch contest". In the end though the Cowboys came through as their collection of actual points trumped the Giants collection of yards and first downs. St. Louis Rams 20 @ San Francisco 49ers 23: Given up five sacks? Not a problem. Sam Bradford throwing 30/42 for 251 yards and a TD on you? Not a problem. Steven Jackson carrying 20 times for 81 yards and a TD? Not a problem. At least not when you have..... Troy Smith!! 17/28 for 356 yards and a TD. And that's how it's done, 2 for 2 now as a starter. I think we've also figured out that Smiths signature play over the coming years is going to go a little something like this; drop back, hold onto ball too long, wait for pass rushers to start grabbing your ankles, throw a leap of faith deep ball at the last possible second, hope it goes complete. So far, so good. New England Patriots 39 @ Pittsburgh Steelers 26: I'm not even sure how the Steelers stayed in this one. The Patriots came right out of the gate firing on all cylinders while Pittsburgh kind of wandered along looking lost. At times in that first half Ben Roethlisberger looked like a liability. Then he almost became the saviour. Overall it was a weird game to watch. Looking at the numbers you'd be confused for thinking the teams had traded places. One team took home 5 sacks, the other zero. If I told you that, you'd assume it was the Steelers who got the sacks, especially given how weak the Patriots pass rush has been. Then if I told you one team ran the ball 24 times and the other just 16, you'd again assume it was the Steelers who rushed 24 times. And again, you'd be wrong. In the end Brady went 30/43 for 350 yards and 3 TDs. Roethlisberger; 30/49 for 387 yards, 3 TDs and 1 INT (which was taken to the house). The Patriots roll to 7-2. So, how did I do with my picks? 3-9 on the day, leaving me 4-9 for the week. Just a tragic day. Personally I blame it all on the Broncos just.... because. One more game to go as I back Philly over Washington. Have a great day everyone.

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