JC's Take: NFL Week 14 Review
Hey everyone, welcome back for my review of anything and everything from Week 14 of the NFL
Team of the Week: Jacksonville Jaguars
-Yes, it is finally time to give credit to this team. They just keep finding ways to win. Down 24-10 at one point, the Jags came back to win 38-31 against Oakland and maintain a one game lead on the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC South. They've been riding the back of Maurice Jones-Drew during this great stretch, as they should. The guy is one of the best backs in the league. David Garrard once again looks to have found his form. The defense, while still giving up big points and yards, is doing just enough to keep them in games and not cost the team anything. Next week they have a chance to seal the division with a win at Indy.
Game of the Week: Baltimore Ravens 34 Houston Texans 28 (OT)
-There really was no game that stood out as being good this week. This game wasn't good in the beginning. It was all Baltimore in the first half. But then the Texans fought back in the 2nd half, as they have been doing all year. The Ravens defense, as pointed out many times by Jon Gruden, looked gased in that second half, and that has to be a concern for them come playoff time. But in the end, it was the defense that won the Ravens the game with Josh Wilson picking off Matt Schaub and returning it for a touchdown in overtime. You have to feel for the Texans. This is the third time they've come from behind in the second half this year, only to lose in the end. That more than likely will cost Gary Kubiak his job.
Goat of the Week: Sal Alosi, New York Jets Strength & Conditioning Coach
-What else can be said that hasn't already be said. What Alosi did was just terrible. I'm glad he's suspended for the rest of the year without pay. There is absolutely no place for that in the game. I know you can get caught up in the moment at times, but tripping another player is taking that to the extreme. Imagine if the Jets would have ran that punt back for a touchdown. But with the way the Jets have been playing recently, I guess they'll try anything to win.
Other Week 14 Notes:
-If Aaron Rodgers is out for an extended period of time, or even just this week's game against New England, the Packers are in trouble. Matt Flynn does not have enough game experience to lead the Packers into the playoffs. And you have to think that Bill Belichick is just salavating at the thought of game-planning for Flynn next Sunday night. The Packers only managed 3 points against the lowly Lions Sunday. That's bad. And now the Packers are a full game pack in the Wild Card. Luckily for them, the Bears also looked bad in defeat against New England. Snow or no snow, you can't look that bad. The Patriots had no problem with it, so neither should the Bears.
-As much as I don't like the guy, I have to give credit to Brett Favre for his 297 consecutive games streak. It takes alot to play that many games in a row. You're more than likely going to be playing through an injury at some point. I think he has become too much of a drama queen the last couple years, but you can't take away from the impressive stats he has put up over the years. The guy definitely deserves his spot in Canton.
-The AFC West is an open race again. The Chargers shut out a Matt Cassel-less Chiefs squad, and are now a game back of the Chiefs. The Chargers have a very managable schedule in their last three, starting with San Francisco at home Thursday night. The Chiefs, meanwhile, have to go on the road to St. Louis, where the Rams play their best football. Even with Matt Cassel at QB, I think I'd still pick the Rams to win. I think in the end, the Chargers once again find their late December magic and find a way to win the AFC West.
-Houston, we have a problem in Jets land. Even at 9-4, they still may find a way to miss the playoffs. They have a tough remaining schedule, going on the road to play Pittsburgh and Chicago before returning home to play a Buffalo Bills team that is looking forward to playing spoiler. Mark Sanchez has looked absolutely terrible the last two games, and it looks like age may be catching up to LT late in the season. And now you have Santonio Holmes dropping wide open passes in the end zone. The Jets need to hope the three 7-6 teams behind them keep losing, because I don't see them winning the next two games.
-The Eagles are going to be a tough out in January. And teams better hope they win the division, because I wouldn't want to see them in the Wild Card round as a road oppenent. DeSean Jackson is a one man nightmare for opposing secondaries, and Mike Vick is finding him. Teams can double team him all they want, but it still doesn't seem to stop him. I'm not a fan of him celebrating before reaching the end zone, but it's not like he didn't have the right too.
1. Atlanta Falcons (11-2, #1 last week)- They looked like men against boys at Carolina. Until they lose they'll have claim to this spot.
2. New England Patriots (11-2, #2)- They have to be considered the clear cut favorite to reach the Super Bowl in the AFC.
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (10-3, #3)- What would happen if Troy Polamalu cut his hair? Would he lose all of his magical play making ability?
4. New Orleans Saints (10-3, #5)- The next two games will tell alot about this team: on the road at Baltimore and Atlanta.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (9-4, #7)- Vick is playing so well I think I'd want his autograph too.
6. Baltimore Ravens (9-4, #6)- The defense allowed the Texans to comeback. That has to be a concern going forward.
7. Chicago Bears (9-4, #4)- They better hope that bad game was just becuase of the snow, because the schedule doesn't get any easier.
8. New York Giants (9-4, #11)- The extra day off helped them I guess. They'll be scary once the offense is healthy, because that running game is back and better than ever.
9. Jacksonville Jaguars (8-5, #12)- Huge game at Indy this week. They can sew up the division and finally put any doubters they have left away for good.
10. Green Bay Packers (8-5, #8)- Hoping Aaron Rodgers gets healthy. Fast.
11. San Diego Chargers (7-6, #16)- There's something about the Chargers and December. Maybe Norv Turner remembers he might actually lose his job if they don't start winning.
12. New York Jets (9-4, #9)- At least the Jets have the Yankees missing out on Cliff Lee as a temporary distraction this week.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-5, #13)- Sending early Xmas gifts to the Eagles as motivation to beat the Giants this week. Also sending Xmas gifts to the giants as well.
14. Kansas City Chiefs (8-5, #10)- Hoping none of their other key components have to have any organs removed for the rest of the season.
15. Indianapolis Colts (7-6, #17)- It all rides on this week's game, otherwise Indy will be golfing early for the first time in years.
16. Miami Dolphins (7-6, #19)- They're lucky the Jets offense is struggling worse than theirs. They probably would have gotten smoked by any other team except Carolina.
17. St. Louis Rams (6-7, #14)- Seattle lost so they are still in first. They have two in a row at home, which plays to their advantage.
18. Oakland Raiders (6-7, #15)- Apparently there is unrest between Tom Cable and offensive coordinator Hue Jackson. Hey, the offense just scored 31 points, it's not their fault they lost.
19. Cleveland Browns (5-8, #18)- After seeing him in person this week, I can safely say Jake Delhomme has no place as a starting QB on a football field.
20. San Francisco 49ers (5-8, #26)- They catapult up after a great offensive performance, with Alex Smith at QB. And now they're only a game back in the NFC West.
21. Dallas Cowboys (4-9, #21)- What's the point in bringing Romo back in Week 16? Just give the guy time to heal, and vacation early.
22. Seattle Seahawks (6-7, #20)- Matt Hasselbeck, even if they win the division, should be done next year.
23. Houston Texans (5-8, #23)- Bill Cowher rumors are surfacing. It was only a matter of time.
24. Minnesota Vikings (4-9, #22)- Well if that was Tavaris Jackson's second act, he better hope he has a good third.
25. Washington Redskins (5-8, #24)- That missed extra point has to be Albert Haynesworth's fault.
26. Tennessee Titans (5-8, #25)- Randy Moss's face is now appearing on milk cartons in the Tennessee area.
27. Buffalo Bills (3-10, #27)- Still playing hard, but losing out on the opportunity to get a top defensive playmaker in the draft.
28. Arizona Cardinals (4-9, #29)- Ken Wisenhunt considering allowing Jay Feely to start at QB next week.
29. Detroit Lions (3-10, #30)- That's one way to win, take out the other teams's starting QB.
30. Denver Broncos (3-10, #28)- Letting a kicker dominate you has to be the low point of the season.
31. Cincinnati Bengals (2-11, #31)- Carson Palmer having nightmares of Troy Polamalu, and Terrell Owens.
32. Carolina Panthers (1-12, #32)- With word Andrew Luck may stay in school, the future looks bleak. Hey, look at it this way Panthers fans, Jake Delhomme could still be your QB!
COACHES ON THE HOT SEAT POWER RANKINGS!!!
1. John Fox, Carolina
2. Marvin Lewis, Cincinnati
3. Gary Kubiak, Houston
4. Jeff Fisher, Tennessee
5. Mike Singeltary, San Francisco
AFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
1. New England Patriots (11-2)- Clinched Playoff Spot
2. Pittsburgh Steelers (10-3)
3. Kansas City Chiefs (8-5)
4. Jacksonville Jagaurs (8-5)
5. Baltimore Ravens (9-4)
6. New York Jets (9-4)
7. San Diego Chargers (7-6)
8. Indianapolis Colts (7-6)
9. Miami Dolphins (7-6)
NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
1. Atlanta Falcons (11-2)
2. Chicago Bears (9-4)
3. Philadelphia Eagles (9-4)
4. St. Louis Rams (6-7)
5. New Orleans Saints (10-3)
6. New York Giants (9-4)
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-5)
8. Green Bay Packers (8-5)
Three Games I'd Like To See Next Week
Indianapolis vs Jacksonville- The Colts last stand.
Philadelphia vs NY Giants- Winner takes driver seat in NFC East race.
NY Jets vs Pittsburgh- It doesn't get any easier for Rex Ryan & Co.
That's all for today. NFL Picks most likely up late tomorrow.
Until next time,