Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Justin's Take: Stars, Goats and Notes from NFL Week 4

Game of the Week: Green Bay 28  New Orleans 27
-Four weeks into the season and the New Orleans Saints are 0-4. I don't think anyone, even me who was down on the Saints this year, saw this coming. New Orleans has been hanging around in every single one of these games. But their defense just hasn't been able to come up with the big stop. And the Saints had the opportunity to win on Sunday, but a holding penalty negated a game winning field goal, and then Garrett Hartley missed on his second try. The Packers picked up a nice win, but they do not look like the dominant team they were last year. The game was close throughout which is what I like. No blowout and a battle of wills throughout.
  Team of the Week: Minnesota Vikings
-Just like I did with the Cardinals last week, I'm starting to come around to the idea of the Vikings being a good football team. I made multiple jokes during the off-season about them being the punching bag of the NFC North. Well, I look to have been wrong there. Christian Ponder looks to be coming around as a good starting QB in the league. While he didn't put up flashy numbers against Detroit, he did a good job of managing the game and not giving it away. It helps that Ponder has two really good weapons to use in Adrian Peterson and Percy Harvin. Harvin showed his great play-making ability on the opening kickoff of the game. And the Vikings defense has played very well, giving up an average of 18 points a game. Now am I ready to declare them a Playoff team? No. But do I think they can contend for a spot? Absolutely. They don't have a difficult schedule. The Vikings are going to make this an interesting season after all.

The Gus Johnson 'As Cool As The Other Side of the Pillow" 3 Stars of the Week
3. Stevan Ridley and Brandon Bolden
The Buffalo Bills dared the New England Patriots to run the ball against them, and run the ball they did. The Patriots gashed the Bills for 247 yards on 40 carries which is an average of 6.2 yards a carry. Bolden and Ridley were the keys to the Patriots comeback in the second half. They were able to run the ball which wore down the Bills defense and allowed Tom Brady to take advantage in the air.

2. J.J. Watt
I've seen Watt play a couple of times. This guy is going to be a stud for the Texans down the line. He's already a good player and he can be something great in a few years. He had 2 sacks and 3 tackles for losses Sunday, as well as a fumble recovery. Watt puts great pressure on the QB. He's a key piece to the Texans defense and he is only in his second year with the team.

1. San Francisco 49ers Defense
I don't know what word you want to use to describe their performance against the Jets on Sunday. Lets use a wrestling one: The San Francisco 49ers defense whipped the Jets offense like a government mule." Not only did they shut out the Jets, they made them look like a JV team. Three sacks, an interception, three fumble recoveries with one going for a touchdown and only 145 yards of total offense given up. The 49ers looked like a team that was very angry and pissed off after their performance against the Vikings in Week 3. They took their frustrations on the Jets Sunday.

The Andy Reid GIVE THE BALL TO LESEAN MCCOY MORE 3 Goats of the Week
3. Tampa Bay Defense
After coming back from an ugly first half, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers took a 22-21 lead with 1:43 left. All they had to do was stop Robert Griffin and not let them get into field goal range. The Redskins only had one timeout left, so they could let the Skins use the middle of the field a little bit. Well, Tampa Bay let the Redskins walk right down the field. Then they let Robert Griffin scramble into field goal range. How do you not have a spy on him? That was just poor game planning by the Bucs defense. I'm sure the offense felt let down after leading a comeback like that.

2. Detroit Lions Special Teams
Your special teams unit is never suppose to lose you football games. Except the Detroit Lions allowed that on Sunday. They let Percy Harvin return the opening kickoff for a touchdown. Then with the game still a one possession game in the third quarter, the Vikings returned a punt return for a touchdown and never looked back. Now the Lions are a disappointing 1-3 and surprisingly in the basement of the NFC South. None of their units, offense, defense or special teams, have played well this season and they have dug themselves an early hole.

1. Mark Sanchez
Is this the end of the Sanchize in New York? He looked absolutely dreadful in defeat yesterday. As I said above, he looked like a JV quarterback out there. And of course, we now have to sit here and wonder if or when the Jets will give Tim Tebow a shot at QB. The Jets play at home on Monday Night next week against Houston. If the Texans play as well as they have been playing, it will be another long day for Sanchez. Sanchez has no help anywhere on offense. The running game has been terrible, he hasn't had Dustin Keller all year, and now he lost his top WR Santonio Holmes for a few weeks. I would not be surprised to see some Tim Tebow next week.

Other Week 4 Notes
-As a Bills fan, I can't tell you how disappointing it was to watch the team build a 14 point lead against the Patriots only to have it evaporate rather quickly in the 3rd quarter yesterday. Blame needs to be placed all around. The much hyped defensive front 4 was run all over by the Pats. The offense played well early but sputtered late. I don't get why they let C.J. Spiller, with a bum shoulder, carry the ball at the 1 yard line when they had Fred Jackson who is a bigger back. Ryan Fitzpatrick, despite making some good throws, also badly under threw and overthrew wide receivers. It was just a completely different team in the second half. The Bills had a chance to make a statement and show they had arrived. I'm not ready to call Mario Williams a bust 4 games into the season, but he has a lot to prove to show he is worth the money he is being paid. And now the Bills go on a West Coast road trip to play San Francisco and Arizona.

-There are many people talking about how good the Cincinnati Bengals are. But I'm not going to be too quick to jump on their band wagon. Yes, they have looked good in three wins. But those wins have been against non-Playoff teams: Cleveland, Washington and Jacksonville. They were whipped by the only good team they played, the Baltimore Ravens. I'm not denying that the Bengals have some good young talent on their team, but I need them to show that they are a Playoff team against other Playoff teams. The Bengals have some more softies coming up in Miami and Cleveland. After that they get Pittsburgh, Denver and the Giants at home. Show me something in those games then I will be on board.

-So, do you think Jerry Jones was all that happy after Monday night? Not only did the Cowboys get manhandled by the Chicago Bears, they looked terrible in every facet of the game. Oh, and the Chicago Bears fans made their presence known throughout the game. There were audible chants not only as the game was ending but also during it. And you know Jerry Jones has to be wondering if Jason Garrett and Tony Romo are the right answer in Dallas. Romo, outside of Week 1, has had three bad weeks. Some of those interceptions last night were downright bad. Romo has yet to show that he can win a big game as Cowboys QB. I'm sure Jerry Jones will not be happy if his team misses the Playoffs again, especially with all the talent that team has on offense.

Random One Liners
-Is there any QB more overpaid in the NFL than Matt Cassel?

-That is what we call football karma, Seattle Seahawks.

-By Raiders season logic, they will put up 35 points on the road in Atlanta in 2 weeks.

-Can the Titans even keep Jake Locker healthy for a whole year?

-I'm sorry you can't have someone automatically give you a win in the NFL like your professors automatically passed you in college, Cam Newton.

-At the rate they're going, the Texans will win the pitiful AFC South by Week 10.

The Booker T FAB FIVE
1. Atlanta Falcons
2. Houston Texans
3. Arizona Cardinals
4. San Francisco 49ers
5. Baltimore Ravens

The King Bookah Peasant Five
28. Carolina Panthers
29. Oakland Raiders
30. Kansas City Chiefs
31. New Orleans Saints
32. Cleveland Browns

Three Games I Would Like To See Next Week
Philadelphia vs Pittsburgh: Can Vick survive against another tough defense?
Denver vs New England: Peyton vs Brady again. Always a good time.
San Diego vs New Orleans: Saints desperately need a win before the bye.

Until Next Time,
Justin C
Follow Me On Twitter @JCWonka

No comments:

Post a Comment