Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Justin's Take: Stars, Goats and Notes from Week 5

This blog doesn't need Tim Tebow to save it. It's time for my Week 5 Review!

Team of the Week: Indianapolis Colts
-The Colts went through a lot during their bye week. They learned head coach Chuck Pagano would miss the remainder of the year while battling leukemia. Losing your head coach, especially under those circumstances, can be tough for a team. And it looked like the Colts were down and out after going into the half against Green Bay down 21-3. I don't know what changed at half time, but the Colts came out firing and stormed back to take the lead. Green Bay rebounded and scored midway through the 4th to take the lead. But the Colts marched right down the field again and Reggie Wayne scored on a great effort play to give the Colts the lead for good. Indianapolis won one for their coach and they will try to ride that momentum for the rest of the year. Are the Colts a Playoff team? I doubt it. But they will be fun to watch the rest of the year.

Game of the Week: Indianapolis 30  Green Bay 27
-More talk of the Colts/Packers game. The first half was all Green Bay, the second half was all Indianapolis. But the 4th quarter was great football. The Colts put constant pressure on the Packers, sacking Aaron Rodgers a total of five times. This game was as much about the Colts will to win as it was the Packers total collapse in the second half. Green Bay's defense played great in the first half, but Andrew Luck tore them up in the second half. The Packers are now 2-3 and trailing the Bears and Vikings in the division. Can they rebound? Sure. But the Packers have to put together a more complete game. As more teams begin to focus on stopping Aaron Rodgers, the Packers need to pay more attention to establishing a run game. With Cedric Benson out, the task became more difficult. Green Bay is reeling, and they need to avoid taking the knockout blow.

The Chuck Pagano "Chuckstrong" 3 Stars of the Week
3. The Bears Defense
-Yes, it was against a very bad Jacksonville Jaguars team. But still, the Bears defense dominated the Jaguars offense and held them to 3 points in a convincing defeat. Its a good thing the Bears defense played as well as it did. It took a little while for the Bears offense to come around as the score was tied 3-3 at the half. But the defense helped get things going with a Charles Tillman 36 yard interception return for a touchdown. The Bears are now 4-1 and in those 4 wins have allowed a total of 48 points. Right now, Chicago looks like the favorites in the NFC South.

2. Drew Brees
-The Saints have been struggling the entire year, and their 0-4 start showed it. But Drew Bress has carried on throughout the whole ordeal and played just like he has the entire year. And Brees set an NFL record by throwing a TD pass in his 48th straight game as the Saints won their first game of the year Sunday night. Brees has already thrown for 1720 yards and 14 touchdowns in his first five games this year. Could you imagine where the Saints would be right now without Brees?

1. Andrew Luck and Reggie Wayne
-I can't continue to give the Colts enough praise for their comeback win this week over Green Bay. It is not too often that you see a rookie QB lead his team back to victory from an 18 point deficit against a team many pegged to be a Super Bowl team. Luck threw for 362 yards and two touchdowns and also ran in for one. Reggie Wayne lit the Packers up for 212 yards and a touchdown on 13 catches. I was surprised Wayne stuck around in the off-season knowing the Colts would be re-building, but Wayne is exactly what Luck needs: a veteran WR to help his QB out when he needs it.

The "Oh No, We Suck Again!" 3 Goats of the Week
3. Mike Vick
-Sure, Vick shad 2 TDs and gave his team the lead. It is not Vick's fault that the defense couldn't hold the Steelers. But it is Vick's fault that he fumbled at the goal line when he was inches away from a touchdown. Vick also had another fumble in the game. The Eagles should have been up by more than one point late in the game. Vick hasn't won the Eagles any games this year, and he has still yet to have a really good game. Can the Eagles continue to live off of mediocre Mike Vick performances for much longer?

2. The Bills Defense
-For the second week in a row, the Bills defense looked like a D-III unit going up against an NFL team. This week's accomplishment? Giving up 300 yards passing and 300 yards rushing in one NFL game. What the hell is the problem with this team? The defensive line continues to get man-handled and defensive coordinator Dave Wannstedt continues to fail to make adjustments to fix the problem. There is too much talent on this team for it to continue to get run over. They better have an answer soon, or it'll be a long season in Bills country.

1. Kansas City Chiefs Fans
 -We understand that Matt Cassel is having a bad season. He continued to have a horrible outing Sunday against the Ravens. Cassel then suffered a head injury that took him to the ground and would end up keeping him out of the game. And Chiefs fans cheered Cassel's injury. It is okay to boo a QB for bad play, but when a player is hurt, booing him is just immature and childish. I would love to see one of those fans out there trying to do what Cassel does. If you don't like the way Cassel is playing, don't watch. But any time a player suffers an injury, booing them is just plain wrong. Especially a head injury like Cassel suffered. Kansas City fans should feel ashamed this morning. I know its not the majority of fans, but the minority is making the town look terrible.

Other Week 5 Notes
-So how good is the NFC West? A couple years ago they were easily the worst division in football. Their division winner was 8-8 and terrible all year. Sure Seattle upset the Saints, but it was still a bad division. Now? Every team in the division has a winning record. But is every team really that good? Seattle has a winning record but is relying heavily on their defense. St. Louis just lost their top WR for six weeks. Arizona only has one loss, but they have questions at QB and at running back. San Francisco has looked dominant the last couple weeks and just suffered a hiccup on the road against a better than expected Minnesota Vikings team. It'll be interested to see how each team progresses as the year goes on. Seattle will be tested the next couple weeks with New England coming to town then a road game at San Francisco. The Rams go to Miami then take on New England and San Fran as well. The next month will take the true temperature of the NFC West.

-I guess the Cincinnati Bengals down slide might have come a week early. Nothing against Miami, but the Dolphins are the type of team that the Bengals are suppose to beat. Especially if they want to be a Playoff team. But the Bengals offense struggled to get anything going at all, and they failed to intercept or sack rookie Ryan Tannehill in a 17-13 loss to Miami. The Bengals offense just looked stagnant at times against Miami. A.J. Green only had 65 yards receiving. While the defense didn't get to Tannehill, they still held the Dolphins to 17 points. With the offense the team has, you would expect the Bengals to win a game where the defense only allows 17 points. If Cincinnati loses to Cleveland next week, which is entirely possible, they could be staring a 5 game losing streak right in the face.

-People love to talk about the Mark Sanchez/Tim Tebow controversy in New York, but will it really matter in the end? Sanchez had a couple of good throws in the game but again failed to win anyone over with his play. He faced a heavy pass rush all night and looked bad against it. And yes, Tim Tebow can bring a spark of energy to your team, but you are not winning a Super Bowl with that guy. Tebow is a horrible pocket passer. The Jets are a mess right now and are missing so many playmakers on offenses that they used Antonio Cromartie in some packages Monday night. Maybe the Bills defense is that bad, because the Jets still looked like the team that struggled on offense in the pre-season. Tim Tebow may be a temporary band aid, but he won't help the Jets out in the log run.

Random One Liners...
-So does Tavaris Jackson know the Bills playbook yet?

-Brady Quinn hasn't found a starting gig yet in the NFL for a reason, Chiefs fans.

-Elite QBs score touchdowns against the lowly Chiefs, Joe Flacco.

-Is Troy Polamalu's hair the only part of his body to never be injured?

-If you played a drinking game every time Sean Payton was shown Sunday Night and Tim Tebow Monday Night, you probably aren't reading this because you are passed out still.

-I think Kevin Kolb was just sacked again.

The Booker T Fab 5
1. Atlanta Falcons
2. Houston Texans
3. San Francisco 49ers
4. Baltimore Ravens
5. Chicago Bears

The Almost As Bad As Chiefs Fans Bottom 5
28. Carolina Panthers
29. Kansas City Chiefs
30. Tennessee Titans
31. Jacksonville Jaguars
32. Cleveland Browns

3 Games I'd Like To See Next Week
Detroit vs Philadelphia: Did Lions right the ship on their bye?
NY Giants vs San Francisco: 49ers are rolling and out for revenge for NFC Championship Game.
Green Bay vs Houston: Packers are staring a 2-4 record right in the face.

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

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