Archive for December, 2007

Hit of the year

December 31, 2007

The contest for biggest hit of the NFL season was decided in the final game of the season by one Darrell Reid of the Indianapolis Colts. Notice how much Dallas Clark is loving it? He’s just glad he’s not the one getting jacked up for once.

Here’s the second place finisher:

Advertisements

Feeling Good

December 31, 2007

Despite the lousy finish last night, I think most of us feel extremely good about the state of this team right now. The offense looked sharp, despite a smart aversion to running the ball. There was no reason to get Addai beat up. Manning was clearly in rhythm, and would have put up 30 had he stayed in the game. Most impressively was the furor of the defense. I can’t ever remember a Colts team that hit as hard as that one. We all know that Bob Sanders will eat brains, but watching Guzman leap over two guys to make a bruising tackle was awesome. This is a nasty defense. Despite allowing a bucketload of return TDs and several meaningless scores in the last two minutes of games, the Colts have the best scoring D in football. Of all the Colts teams I’ve seen, this one is the first to surpass the cursed 1996 as my favorite. I have this feeling like this team is about to ascend to a completely different level over the next month.

How hilarious was last night’s game as a microcosm of everything we’ve been saying about VY? I mean seriously. He was having a really strong statistical night, but the Titans were losing. As soon as he left the game, I knew we were in trouble. Jeff Fisher’s interview was weeeeeird after the game. He basically said Young COULD have played. YIKES. Did he really just bench his star QB in the 3rd quarter of a must win game that he was losing? Yup. And that’s why he’s great. He knew Collins was the best hope for winning that game, and was lucky he got the excuse he needed to play him.

Here’s a start on today’s links:
Clayton does a good job on the key issues of the playoffs.
CHFF picks their awards
John Clayton puts the Colts as at 2-1 to knock of the Pats.
Scouts Inc. weird system rates the Colts and Pats as even on offense.
Scoop may be crazy, but he’s not wrong.

Brown out

December 31, 2007

Titans 16 – Colts 10

Titans Game Blog

December 31, 2007

Good evening. We are going to try to blog this puppy at least until it gets out of hand. Marvin is inactive tonight. He is joined by Anthony Gonzalez, Ryan Diem, Raheem Brock, and Robert Mathis. The Titans are favored by five points. Peyton Manning and Joseph Addai probably won’t play more than a series or two.

First Quarter

1.) Nice kickoff coverage. Titans start with a big run. Looked like Hagler was held. DZ reminds me that there is no holding in the NFL. It has gone the way of the traveling call in hoops. Big third down conversion to Bo Scaife. Young easily beat a weak blitz by Gary Brackett. First and goal for the Titans. Chris Brown takes it in for the score. Almost a mirror image of last week’s opening drive by Houston. Man-handled.

2.) Poor return by Rushing. He looked indecisive, probably because the blocking wasn’t there. This could quickly turn into a laugher. Manning and the Colts open with a swing to Addai for 8 yards. Wayne for 3 yards and the first down. Bryan Fletcher gets rocked mercilessly and drops a short gain. Big completion of 18 yards to Reggie Wayne on third and 4. He already has 4 catches. He must be trying to get Reggie his 100 balls. Manning gets to 4,000 yards and Reggie Wayne fumbles after getting destroyed. Go out of bounds, pal. His third lost fumble of the season. Not good.

3.) The Colts are getting pushed around up front. They miss Raheem Brock. Ed Johnson misses a sure tackle, allowing the first down to Brown. Freddy Keiaho stuffs the ball carrier on first down. Young scrambles but is reined in for a short gain. Scrambles again, but can’t pick up the conversion. Nice defensive effort.

4.) Big gain for Addai. 14 yards. Ugoh neutralized Vanden Bosch and went seeking another guy to block. I love it. Albert Haynesworth is out for the moment. Fletcher gets nailed again after a short gain. Big third down coming up. Addai picks it up with it 8 yards. 100 catches for Wayne. Another drive ends very lamely, with the ball knocked harmlessly forward as Manning is throwing it. Titans lead 7-3, after AV bangs one home.

Second Quarter

5.) Wayne may have just set some kind of record. He has 10 catches and we are only 18 minutes into the game.

6.) Titans are driving again. They face 3rd and 6 and pick it easily. Big gainer to Gage. Terrible PI penalty on Marlin Jackson given that ball looked uncatchable by anyone other than Kareem Abdul Jabar or maybe Godzilla. Doesn’t matter because the Titans fumble the ball away on the next play.

7.) Manning and Addai are done. Aromashadu is called for a block in the back negating a big gain for Kenton Keith. He didn’t need the help. Reggie Wayne now leads the lead in receiving yards and has a dozen catches. This is getting silly. He leaves with a career high in catches. Now we’ll see if Sorgi can move the ball with absolute nobodies at WR. 3rd and 9 and they run a moronic play to Craphonso Thorpe. A one yard bubble screen. That made no sense. Smith punts and hefty Darrell Reid tracks down the return-man. Very nice.

8.) Titans have a huge third and 9 coming up, backed up against their own end zone. A pick six would come in handy right about now. So close! Colts blitz and Young skies one that a diving Giordano can’t come up with it. Tennessee punts the ball a mile and the Colts help out by comitting several egregious penalties. A 70 yard change in field position. That’s tough to pull off.

9.) Sorgi looks inept and his receivers aren’t much better as the Colts quickly go three and out. Peyton Manning shakes his head in disbelief from the sidelines. Al Michaels thinks the Browns fans must be frustrated right now. I would imagine they are because my team has nothing on the line and I’m not all that happy. Still, it is a very close game and VY hasn’t shown us much from the quarterback position.

10.) Hilarious completion to Justin Gage. It would have been an incomplete pass to Bo Scaife, but Giordano’s helmet skied the ball about 15 yards right to Gage. Unlucky as it gets, but pretty funny. Young is moving the ball. BOB SANDERS pops him square in the knee. Young didn’t see him because Josh Thomas was also giving chase. Titans use their last timeout with 59 seconds to play. Sanders proceeds to break up a deep ball to force a Titan punt. It was fourth and 15, but I hate the decision to punt from the Colts 41 yard line. I guess Jeff Fisher doesn’t believe in Young’s ability to make a big play. Weird. Titans lead 7 -3 at the half.

Third Quarter

11.) I kind of wish they’d put Manning back in the game and say screw it we want to keep the Titans out of the playoff. Nice opening return by Rushing to the 39. Sorgi comes out with Keith and Lawton on either side. They blitz the crap out of him for a sack and loss of 8. Horrific. He comes back with a 12 yard gain to Crap. Punt. That was bad. Sorry Cleveland. It’s time to start praying for Vince Young to play like Vince Young, if you haven’t already.

12.) It looks like Reggie Wayne’s early fumble will be the story of the game for the Colts and Browns. The good news is the Colts have stopped the run much better in the last two quarters. The scrubs are in, but the Titans fumble again. Clint Sessions knocks the ball out and Rocky Boiman is on the spot with the recovery.

13.) Sorgi needs a big strike. He doesn’t get it, but he does get a HUGE penalty for a late hit. From the original television angle it looked like an unnecessary shot. This is followed immediately by an illegal use of hands to the face call. The Colts are moving the ball without trying. Cleveland must have found religion. 2nd and Goal from the three after Bullock whiffs on Dawson. CRAP! I mean YES! Touchdown Craphonso Thorpe. 30 yard scoring drive. Colts lead 10-7.

14.) The Titans need a big return here because they haven’t moved the ball nearly well enough. HOLY WHAT THE! Darrel Reid has me talking nonsense because he just delivered the hit of the year. That was so funny and violent. Madden dubs it one of the biggest hits he’s ever seen. I’d say. 3rd and two and Young scrambles for a cloooose first down. He’s gimpy. Kerry Collins comes in. Titans are driving again. The Titans can’t run the ball. Discounting VY’s scrambles they are 21 carries for 64 yards. It is hilarious. Collins picks up a big third down. No pressure. DZ comments that this injury is the best thing to happen to the Titans. False start and delay of game penalties back to back. Not strong. The drive stalls as Charleston forces a low throw with good pressure on Kerry Collins. Colts 10 – Titans 10.

15.) That was a 13 play drive with only a field goal to show for it. The Colts excel at allowing long drives with little payoff. Occasionally you’ll get a touchdown, but more often the D will make a huge play along the way. A 14 yard gain to Aromashadu is negated by an illegal man downfield penalty. Huge swing. That could be a hidden play that helps decide this one.

Fourth Quarter

16.) The Colts haven’t conceded anything easily tonight to Tennessee. HUGE third and seven coming up for Sorgi and company. LUUUUUUKE. The fan favorite snags one of his shoestrings and takes it for 10 yards. Sorgi nearly throws a pick. He needs to get that ball closer to the sideline. But the bigger question is why aren’t they running? Terrible play-calling. Another errant pass, followed by another. Interesting to note that Tony Ugoh is still playing and playing well.

17.) Titans are pinned deep and still trying to run. This is getting funny. Two runs are stuffed which brings up a big 3rd and 6. SO CLOSE. Rushing nearly makes the play of the night, instead it is a game of exactly 6. Titans have 25 carries for 70 yards. Not getting it done. All their success is coming through the air, finding the sizeable holes in the zone. The LBs are playing great for the most part, but DZ correctly notes that the blitz is failing miserably. The D looks somewhat gassed as the Titans are mounting their second best drive of the night. This has been a fun game to watch. I’m really impressed with the effort on D. Ed Johnson makes a great stop to force a third down. He grabbed Henry by the ankle. Awesome player. OOH. Nearly picked off. Fourth and 5 and Bironas comes on for a 54 yarder. Titans lead 13-10.

18.) Screw you, Bironas. I’m still mad about last December. I think we’d all like to see Jim Sorgi come in and bury these clowns and finish the AFC South Revenge Tour the right way. 7:33 to play. Rushing can’t handle the kickoff and the Colts start with bad field position. I hope he doesn’t screw us in the playoffs with a big mistake. What the —- is he doing? Why is Sorgi still trying to throw? He’s ruining a terrific effort by the rest of the team. Miserable effort.

19.) The good news is the Indy Defense will finish the season #1 in points allowed. I’m still angry about the offensive play-calling. Ridiculous. 3rd and 6 and the Colts allow an easy conversion. If there has been a weak point tonight it has been the pass defense. They haven’t had the necessary pressure from the front 4. Collins is just picking these guys apart. The Titans have run far more plays tonight, but still can’t get anything on the ground. It’s awesome to watch. They are now down to 2.6 yards per carry. I’ve never seen anything like it from a team that has everything to play for against a team who is playing for nothing much. 3rd and five. AND THEY RUN AGAIN AND STUFFED AGAIN. AMAZING. Titans lead 16-10.

20.) Kerry Collins has saved the Titans. He led them to two field goal drives to win the game (probably). Sorgi will have one last chance to redeem himself and save the AFC South Revenge Tour. He IS REALLY BAD. Really awful. What is going on? 3 and out and the Colts will go for it. Aromashadu drops the conversion. He double clutches it. That’s a flat-out drop, but Sorgi lacks the zip to be an NFL quarterback. His throws look like birthday balloons.

21.) Can you tell me why the Colts only ran the ball 9 times in this game? Only two times in the second half? They were averaging over 5 yards per carry. Madden is ripping Sorgi, deservedly. I’ve never been more angry about a meaningless game. The Colts D played like geniuses and the Browns deserve to be going to the playoffs. Tennessee is not nearly good enough.

Point/Counter Point

December 30, 2007

Announcer: Tonight on Point/Counter Point, we address the 2007 Patriots. Specifically, this topic: After they lose in the playoffs, should their season be considered a successful one? Our panelists this evening, Braynt Gumbel and Chris Collinsworth. Gentlemen, you have the floor.

Gumbel: Thanks. I want to make it clear that I have no specific qualifications to give my opinion on this issue, but my laid back narrative style should lend itself to a soothing rhythm in this debate. To the point in hand, I think that despite their impending loss in the playoffs, the Patriots season has been a rousing success. No team has ever won such an amazing string of meaningless games by relentless ‘stoning’ the other team. The ride is ending soon sure, but it’s been a thrill to watch. Kudos to the Boston Patriots for their perfect (mostly) season!

Collinsworth: This debate sets up perfectly for me because I can use both of my vocal tones. I’ll start off with drone: The New England Brady’s have been the greatest team I’ve ever seen, but I doubt very seriously whether I’ll remember any of that after they lose. I’ll find a way to say that I saw it coming, and blame the loss on something completely irrelevant like the Patriots just wanting to win TOO much. But back to the topic, Bryant, how can you possibly say that this season was a success for the Patriots? After their impending playoff loss, they’ll forever be remembered as the football version of the 2004 Yankees. This season will be a failure both for them and for me personally, as I’ll have to talk about other teams during Super Bowl week, and quite frankly I stopped paying attention to anything other than Tom Brady’s ass about 3 months ago.

Gumbel: I think you’re missing the point Chris. The playoff loss will only put the Pats in a more historic light. They’ll go down with the great Bears teams of the 1930s that also choked in the playoffs. Being remembered forever makes you great. This team will invariably be remembered, therefore it’s been a great season. Does this turtleneck make me look fat? I don’t want to be confused with my brother.

Collinsworth: YOU CAN’T SAY THAT IN THAT SITUATION. IT’S JUST SLOPPY. I THINK THAT YOU HAVE TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE MOCKING THAT THEY WILL RECEIVE FROM THE OTHER TEAMS. THAT CAN GET INTO A GUY’S HEAD AND AFFECT HIS FUTURE PERFORMANCE. EVEN A BEAUTIFUL HEAD LIKE TOM BRADY’S WILL SUFFER AFTER THIS APPROACHING DEFEAT.

Gumbel: Well Chris, you are talking loudly, and I’m incompetent so I guess that you’re right. What? We just missed a play? Oh well, that’s the beauty of having a conversation with give and take, you don’t have to get bogged down in little things like what actually happens on the field.

Collinsworth: We’ve finally found something we can agree on. It’s just as well if I miss a play. I’d hate to have to actually watch a replay and give insight. It’s too easy to do things like pointlessly question a player’s toughness or state of mind. No one can prove me wrong about those things.

Announcer: Thank you gentlemen. This was enlightening. Next week we’ll have John Madden and Chris Berman discuss whether BOOM! or Wooop wooop wooop! is more effective in analyzing the results of a play in football. This has been Point/Counter Point. Good night.

Congrats on #50 Tom Brady!!!

December 30, 2007

And it only took you 76 more throws than Peyton Manning to throw that 50th touchdown.

Not to mention an extra game. See you in three weeks.

(Also, your Running Back is horrible.)

Graves buries SIU

December 29, 2007

The headline was so obvious that I can’t believe no one used it. Check out the video on this page. About halfway through, they finally show the amazing 35 footer AJ Graves nailed to beat the buzzer. That’s a serious big boy shot.

Demond mocks my love for Butler, but we grew up 5 minutes from Hinkle and our dad used to take us to Butler games. We’d sit near the court, and he’d heckle the officials. I always pull hard for the Bulldogs, but Demond still holds an IU based grudge because of some random badly officiated game like 7 years ago. Well, screw you man! GO BUTLER.

Demond Sanders: That game was last year, not 7 years ago, and it was a joke. I generally like Butler, but this latest incarnation gets on my nerves a little. Now that they have respect from the national media their small school schtick is wearing thin. Also, I am firmly against sports bigamy. I have one team in each major sport and that’s it. Colts, Pacers, Reds, Hoosiers, Fever, and Thrashers.

Bob Sanders signs 5 year deal

December 28, 2007

ESPN is reporting that Bob “The Zombie” Sanders has signed a five-year, 37.5 million dollar deal to stay with the Indianapolis Colts. Great news for just about everybody with the possible exception of Dallas Clark. This deal makes Sanders the highest paid safety in the NFL. The early word is Sanders plans on celebrating the contract by popping open Larry Maroney’s skull and eating his brain.

You thought that was good news? Try this. That’s right. #88 is set to play on Sunday. He practiced for two consecutive days for the first time in recent memory. January is only 3 days away!

Here’s another nice link: FO’s all rookie team. They point out some facts about Tony Ugoh that we’ve been screaming about all season. I love when that happens.

DZ Comments: It’s a red letter day! This is all great, if not totally unexpected news. I think, and I’m not sure on this, that because they signed Bob before the end of the season, that they can prorate his contract over this year too, and use the cap space created when Simon was cut to help offset the bonus. I’m going to check on that, but I think that’s how it works.

Well it’s not 18, but 4 is OK

December 28, 2007

That’s because we just post the Vince Young Files, Volume IV. Normally on Friday, or Saturday or whenever we get to it, we post our Eyes in the Backfield column, but honestly, it’s a ton a work to do for a game that doesn’t matter much. So in honor of Sunday night’s clash of the Titans (ho ho!), we are going back to another of our favorite recurring characters, Vince Young.

I’d say our conclusions were surprising, except that if you’ve read the VY Files Volumes 1-3, you can probably guess at what they are going to say: Vince Young’s play has little to do with whether or not the Titans win or lose.

At this point, you can’t really say, “Vince Young just wins games”. You can’t really even say, “Vince Young just loses games” (a phrase originally coined for Vinnie Testaverde). Now, all we can say is:

Vince Young just plays in games.

Also: The Zombie is getting some serious mo for DPY. That was my blogging attempt at becoming a short order cook. I have to say, we are obviously thrilled as our infatuation with Zombie Bob is well documented, and fairly obvious given our pseudonyms. I’m still a little steamed about Gary Brackett not making the Pro Bowl though. Bob is a beast, but I don’t like for people to turn him into a one man show this year. He certainly was in the playoffs last year, but let’s not forget about how great Bracket is.

What the heck, A COLT IS GOING TO WIN DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR! Will wonders never cease.

Well it’s not 18, but 4 is OK

December 28, 2007

That’s because we just post the Vince Young Files, Volume IV. Normally on Friday, or Saturday or whenever we get to it, we post our Eyes in the Backfield column, but honestly, it’s a ton a work to do for a game that doesn’t matter much. So in honor of Sunday night’s clash of the Titans (ho ho!), we are going back to another of our favorite recurring characters, Vince Young.

I’d say our conclusions were surprising, except that if you’ve read the VY Files Volumes 1-3, you can probably guess at what they are going to say: Vince Young’s play has little to do with whether or not the Titans win or lose.

At this point, you can’t really say, “Vince Young just wins games”. You can’t really even say, “Vince Young just loses games” (a phrase originally coined for Vinnie Testaverde). Now, all we can say is:

Vince Young just plays in games.

Also: The Zombie is getting some serious mo for DPY. That was my blogging attempt at becoming a short order cook. I have to say, we are obviously thrilled as our infatuation with Zombie Bob is well documented, and fairly obvious given our pseudonyms. I’m still a little steamed about Gary Brackett not making the Pro Bowl though. Bob is a beast, but I don’t like for people to turn him into a one man show this year. He certainly was in the playoffs last year, but let’s not forget about how great Bracket is.

What the heck, A COLT IS GOING TO WIN DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR! Will wonders never cease.