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My (First of '07) Week 1 Thoughts

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  • My (First of '07) Week 1 Thoughts

    I'm back with another year of post-weekend analysis. So without further ado I present my writeup.


    My Truths: the good….

    Mario Williams lived up to his billing and made his presence felt. Sure it was against the Chiefs, whose O-Line is hardly their strength; however every defensive end in the NFL pads their stats against inferior opponents whether it’s Julius Peppers, Jason Taylor or Dwight Freeney. Mario Williams was already a top flight run defender, now if he can become a force as a pass rusher I think my prediction about him being one of, if not the best DE in football will be right.

    Tom Brady as an MVP candidate is a so far, so good for me. With all the weapons he has he should put up the best stats he’s ever put up. Randy Moss is seemingly back and motivated again. If he can stay healthy, his biggest issue the past three years, he will help take Brady to that next level.

    Jay Cutler took his first step towards justifying my prediction of his ascension into the upper echelon of NFL Quarterbacks. He accumulated 300 yards, hooked up with Javon Walker and Brandon Marshall. The stats, in and of themselves, was not as impressive as the intangibles he displayed. He used his arm strength, athleticism and intelligence on that final rally to win the game. He converted not one, but two 4th and 2 situations to give Elam a chance to win the game for them. He should only continue to improve as he gathers more experience.

    The Jets were a shaky 10-6 team and would regress. They still have defensive issues and an iffy QB situation. Sure they weren’t expected to win, but it’s not good to be blown out in your own building to a division rival. I think their record will better reflect the talent of the team, i.e. mediocre at best.

    Larry Johnson didn’t have a good game. The Chiefs were so bad offensively they couldn’t establish Johnson, the O-Line is weak, the passing game is a disaster and the defense is mediocre. Will he get better? He probably will have more impressive performances, especially as the season progresses and he gets into game shape. Will he still be considered an elite RB? I don’t think so.

    The Bengals also looked very good. The defense, in particular, looked vastly improved from last year. Leon Hall had a solid game in pass coverage, Landon Johnson and Ahmad Brooks were making plays, the D-Line was getting steady pressure. Albeit the Ravens had a sloppy game, the Bengals were swarming to the ball. It all culminated in not one, but two goal-line stands to preserve victory. The offense will carry the load, so if they can keep up this level of play on the defensive side of the ball then the Bengals will be a very dangerous team.

    The Lions won. Sure it was only against the Raiders, but it was still a road game and it was still a good start for them. The defense had a lapse that allowed the Raiders to get back into the game, but they really clamped down to finish them off. Dewayne White was spectacular at the end of the game. In an NFC that is a complete crapshoot at this point (I’ll get to that later on), why not the Lions? They certainly have the offense and if the defense can make plays in crucial situations like they did today then they should be able to get up to the .500 record, which would be a miracle for this franchise.

    Me – 1 (Lions)
    BBD – 0 (Raiders)

    My Truths: the bad…

    The Redskins and Jason Campbell, despite the win, did not justify my pick of them in the NFC East. The Dolphins have a tough defense, so I will give Campbell a break. That being said I think the Dolphins are a bad football team and Washington was at home. Jon Jansen’s injury is a big loss and will hurt the offense. The one bright spot is the defense played solidly and Clinton Portis looked like he was back. I’m going to stick to my guns, but I expect more from Campbell next week against the Eagles.

    Vernon Davis didn’t have a big game. Then again, the 49ers struggled for the vast majority of that ugly, ugly game. Was it Davis’ fault? Was it Smith’s fault? Was it just great defense? It’s too hard to say. That being said I certainly expected more. He has fifteen more games, so I still think he’ll do just fine going forward.

    My Truths: the ugly…

    Do the Colts read my stuff? I swear they do and use it as BB material in their locker room. It’s the only explanation. They destroyed the Saints across the board. Freddy Keiaho is a much better player than Cato June and I’ve only seen one game, it’s already that evident. Still I think it’s too early to tell if their defense will play at this level for the entire season. Next week, on the road, against the Titans’ incredible rushing attack will be a litmus test for the legitimacy of the Colts’ defense.

    What’s worse is the Jaguars looked lousy. Dirk Koetter called an awful game, throwing the ball thirty times with Garrard and virtually ignoring the running game. They were also torn up by the Titans’ rushing attack. My only hope is that the Texans continue to play as well as they did, or Vince Young can pass better, otherwise it looks like the Colts will continue to reign in the AFC South.

    Are there actually any good teams in the NFC?

    I really don’t know what to make of this entire conference. The two teams everyone imagined to be good both lost on Sunday. The Bears’ offense looks pathetic and Cedric Benson looks like a bust to me and the defense just lost two starters. The Saints’ defense looked pathetic and will teams start stealing the Colts’ game plan against Payton’s offense? The NFC East looks wide open with all of the teams were devastated by injuries this weekend, it was unbelievable. Seattle looked unimpressive against the Bucs at home. The Cardinals/49ers game was a horrific display, to put it nicely. The only team that actually looked good was the Carolina Panthers, who won on the road and played well on both sides of the ball. Could they do the same thing they did in ’03? This is a quagmire and I want to see if any team can actually step up and take what is a very winnable conference.

    The more things change….

    Often times we will hear a lot of nonsense during the off-season. Here are a lot of things that many were saying had changed, yet sure enough, one week into the season nothing really changed.
    • Roy Willams still stinks in coverage and should not be a pro-bowl player.
    • Mike Brown and Cadillac Williams are both hurt, again.
    • Joey Harrington is horrible, despite what he did in the pre-season.
    • Adam Carriker comes in and the Rams still cannot stop the run.
    • Jamal Lewis, despite off-season fluff pieces, is still not the “Jamal of old.”
    • The Steelers still have one of the best defenses in football.
    • Mike McCarthy claimed that the Packers would show more commitment to the run, yeah right.
    • Eric Mangini’s 3-4 scheme still does not mesh with his personnel.
    • The Broncos can still run the ball with the best of them.
    • The Raiders’ and Browns’ O-Line are still poor.
    • Steve McNair is even worse than he was last year, so much for “getting comfortable” in the offense. He’s washed up, period.
    The rookies are already making their presence felt.

    Adrian Peterson, Marshawn Lynch and Calvin Johnson were all players who were the clear favorites to be the top candidates for the OROTY award. In week 1 all of them played well, even better than expected.

    Peterson was electric out there and he definitely looked like he was in Oklahoma. He is the best RB I have ever seen coming out of college, I’ve known that he was going to be a star even since I saw him as a Freshman. As long as he doesn’t get hurt he will be an elite RB.

    Lynch looked very good, as well. He shook off the pre-season struggles and looked very good as a dual threat. I still think Peterson was, is and will be the better player. I think the Bills got a very good player. Now it’s up to the passing game to figure things out, because that facet of the offense was a disaster. Lynch carried that unit yesterday.

    Calvin Johnson is a once in a lifetime talent. In that offense, facing against inferior corners while Roy takes on the Nnamdi Asomugha’s of the league, will only allow him to make an instant impact. I expect an Andre Johnson-type rookie season (976 yards) at worst.

    Patrick Willis certainly looks like the favorite for the DROTY honors. Linebackers always have the edge in this award, much like ‘Backs dominate the offensive award. Willis was all over the field making tackles. If there was one impressive thing about the 49ers/Cardinals game it was Patrick Willis’ play.

    Quick Takes:

    Things I noticed, but weren't worthy of entire paragraphs.
    • The Titans have one of the elite O-Lines in all of football. Hence why next weeks 'something has to give' match-up with the Colts is so exciting.
    • The Giants team is in shambles after several major injuries incurred during last night’s game; Coughlin’s reign is nearing its end. Osi is out, Eli is reportedly out, Jacobs is out, and the defense is weak as is.
    • If anyone’s missed my mock post-draft press conference, check out the NFC South forum. Welcome to Atlanta Brian Brohm, were glad to have you as the QB of the future.
    • Cleveland needs to bite the bullet and put Brady Quinn in.
    • JP Losman took a step back in my mind.
    • Ben Roethlisberger looks completely different than he did last year when he looked very tentative.
    • Minnesota’s defense is vastly improved with the additions of Brian Robison and the de facto addition of Chad Greenway.
    • The reason I didn’t like the move of Mattias Kiwanuka is he wouldn’t be able to match up with an athletic TE in pass coverage, evidently Jason Garrett thought the same thing and they went to Witten over and over again.
    Last edited by Shiver; 09-11-2007, 01:47 AM.


  • #2
    I'd venture to say the Vikings looked alright. No they won't compete for the NFC title, but to say the Panthers were the only team that looked good is kind of a stretch.

    But that's nit-picking, the rest is money.
    Originally posted by 7-11
    Originally posted by Renji
    Keyshawn because i just hate T.O. he is a cocky son of a biscuit
    But an athletic marvel for a second generation confectionary product

    Comment


    • #3
      The Vikings were playing the Falcons, temper your expectations.

      Comment


      • #4
        Regardless of who we're playing, we looked good. I don't expect us to reach even .500, but this week we looked pretty good.
        Originally posted by 7-11
        Originally posted by Renji
        Keyshawn because i just hate T.O. he is a cocky son of a biscuit
        But an athletic marvel for a second generation confectionary product

        Comment


        • #5
          Jay cutler didn't look that impressive to me. He had a lot of yards but... what else? I see him as marc bulger v2.0 will put up decent stats but won't really win games for you.

          p.s. buffalo should have won that game.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Shiver View Post
            The Vikings were playing the Falcons, temper your expectations.
            You could say the same thing about the Rams to be honest. They pretty much just stopped caring as soon as Pace went down. Don't get me wrong, there were other keys to the game (the Panthers making in game adjustments for the first time in 2 years, Richard Marshall running down Dante Hall on a kick return, Jenkins levelling Bulger, the running game, Jake not doing anything dumb) but the Panthers were behind the Rams after the first half.

            I actually liked the Vikings coming into the year. Their defense is stout (run defense at least) and while they have no QB and their OLine is overrated they picked up Adrian Peterson. In the NFC that might be enough to stumble to an 8-8 or 9-7 record. Looks like the Packers could be the team that steps up in the North, too, though

            Also you forgot one major point

            All Alex Smith does is win football games
            Last edited by SchizophrenicBatman; 09-11-2007, 02:01 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              a couple weeks ago in one of those standings predictions threads, i predicted the lions would come in 2nd in their division. i got a lot of negative rep from packers fans but i'm still sticking to that prediction.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by soybean View Post
                Jay cutler didn't look that impressive to me. He had a lot of yards but... what else? I see him as marc bulger v2.0 will put up decent stats but won't really win games for you.

                p.s. buffalo should have won that game.

                You have to be kidding me. On the final drive to win the game he went 4/5 for 51 yards, even adding in a seven yard run on 4th-2 to give them a chance. He was making stick throws to Walker, into tight windows. He did everything you could want from a QB.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Great writeup as always shiver

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Windy City Big Gamer Uno View Post
                    a couple weeks ago in one of those standings predictions threads, i predicted the lions would come in 2nd in their division. i got a lot of negative rep from packers fans but i'm still sticking to that prediction.
                    I dont know how many W's theyll end up with but Kitna is going to have quite a season statistically. As long as you ignore the INT category

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by soybean View Post
                      Jay cutler didn't look that impressive to me. He had a lot of yards but... what else? I see him as marc bulger v2.0 will put up decent stats but won't really win games for you.

                      p.s. buffalo should have won that game.
                      Since december last year I've been saying he could be Denver's next Elway with his intangibles and I actually predicted pre-trade offs he'd be traded for by Shannahan. The kid simply has "it" that same "it" that Tom Brady, Brett Favre, Peyton Manning and Carson Palmer have. He's on his way to being special.

                      As for the NFC I think you're right about the Panthers, the division won't be all that tough and after seeing the Jags, and Tenn's lack lustre effort I'm not exactly nervous about the cross AFC match ups.

                      The ZBS with Power at times running system worked beautifully against a team that's not exactly poor in the front seven.

                      The rest of the schedule:
                      Houston
                      Atlanta
                      Tampa Bay
                      New Orleans
                      Arizona
                      Indianapolis
                      Tennessee
                      Atlanta
                      Green Bay
                      New Orleans
                      San Francisco
                      Jacksonville
                      Seattle
                      Dallas
                      Tampa Bay

                      The hardest teams will be Greenbay, Indianapolis, Seattle and New Orleans,

                      Two of which we get to play at home, particularly Indianapolis.

                      Very weak schedule coupled with a top 10 defense (based on last year) and an improving running game sounds good.

                      I know its very, very, very early days and the above is homeristic but the future looks pretty bright.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        maybe im just skeptical, we'll see as the season unfolds.

                        i just feel that if you're gonna throw for 300+ yards you'd have at least more than 1 td.
                        Last edited by soybean; 09-11-2007, 02:12 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by soybean View Post
                          Jay cutler didn't look that impressive to me. He had a lot of yards but... what else?
                          What else? I take it you didn't take notice of the final drive of that game?


                          The problem arises when people use statistics like a drunk uses a lamp post: for support instead of illumination.

                          If luck is where preparation meets opportunity, then clutch is where failure meets luck.

                          <Add1ct> setting myself on fire can't be that hard
                          <Add1ct> but tackling a mosquito might prove a challenge

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Dam8610 View Post
                            What else? I take it you didn't take notice of the final drive of that game?
                            I know, that's exactly what I thought as well.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BlindSite View Post
                              The ZBS with Power at times running system worked beautifully against a team that's not exactly poor in the front seven.
                              What? Theyre a pretty awful run defense. We did a good job of keeping Little in check on the pass rush and the LBs should have been better on the pass D too but I wouldnt say this was any more impressive than running all over the Giants or Falcons ever is. And their secondary sucks

                              As for the rest of the season, I'm optomistic. Don't want to get my hopes up too much, but so far so good through Week 1. I'll start believing if we don't have one of our trademark look past Houston and lose/almost lose games.

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