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View Poll Results: Who goes further this season from the NFC West?
San Francisco 58 45.31%
Seattle 70 54.69%
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:33 PM    (permalink
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Saying "They're the Rams! They can't be good!" sounds about as dumb now as saying "They're the 49ers! They can't be good!" sounded 3+ years ago.

Any team in the NFL can be an elite top-5 team. All it takes is an influx of talent and literally any franchise can become a marquee power.

The Patriots used to be one of the worst franchises in the league, and then Bill Parcells came in and drafted some guys with talent, and in the mid90s they became a good team. Belichick came in and took them even further.

There's no reason why the Rams can't become a dynasty in the next 5 years. Or the Browns, for that matter. Or any laughingstock franchise. All it takes is a few good drafts to shift the balance of power in the NFL.
I'm sure you'd have a lot of confidence in Las Vegas wagering the Rams will make the Super Bowl using that logic.
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:43 PM    (permalink
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I'm sure you'd have a lot of confidence in Las Vegas wagering the Rams will make the Super Bowl using that logic.
I'm not saying that the Rams are a lock to win the Super Bowl this year. I'm just saying that it's asinine to completely write them off as contenders (for the division, in the playoffs, to win the NFC CG at some point) in the next 2-3 years because "they're the rams".

That's like saying, in the early 90s: "Oh, the Patriots? To win multiple Super Bowls? Bahahaha! They're the Patriots! They never win anything!"

Or, in the late 70s/early 80s before Bill Walsh got things rolling, the 49ers were one of the worst franchises in the league: "Oh, the 49ers? They're the 49ers! They'll never win anything!"

Or, in the mid 90s with the Rams themselves, before Dick Vermeil came back to coach them, they sucked terribly: "The Rams? To win the Super Bowl in 1999? They won 4 games last year and haven't won more than 7 in the past nine years!"

Alot of these dynasties that cropped up in NFL history were formerly atrocious teams that simply got a competent head coach, drafted some talented guys, and then went on to suddenly be really good.
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:49 PM    (permalink
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I'm not saying that the Rams are a lock to win the Super Bowl this year. I'm just saying that it's asinine to completely write them off as contenders (for the division, in the playoffs, to win the NFC CG at some point) in the next 2-3 years because "they're the rams".

That's like saying, in the early 90s: "Oh, the Patriots? To win multiple Super Bowls? Bahahaha! They're the Patriots! They never win anything!"

Or, in the late 70s/early 80s before Bill Walsh got things rolling, the 49ers were one of the worst franchises in the league: "Oh, the 49ers? They're the 49ers! They'll never win anything!"

Or, in the mid 90s with the Rams themselves, before Dick Vermeil came back to coach them, they sucked terribly: "The Rams? To win the Super Bowl in 1999? They won 4 games last year and haven't won more than 7 in the past nine years!"

Alot of these dynasties that cropped up in NFL history were formerly atrocious teams that simply got a competent head coach, drafted some talented guys, and then went on to suddenly be really good.
Most teams start to build momentum before taking that next step. Rarely do you see a 1999 Rams or 1999 Colts turnaround. The Rams have been bad for a decade. It's not crazy for people to write them off as pretenders even if they play in the salary cap era. That's like saying people have been crazy to write off the Browns every single season or the next 2-3 years as playoff contenders and hide behind the salary cap excuse. Especially when they play in a division with two consistent playoff contenders with Pittsburgh and Baltimore. You're gonna sit here and tell me that people that write off teams like the Browns and Rams next season are fools? What?
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:10 PM    (permalink
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Most teams start to build momentum before taking that next step. Rarely do you see a 1999 Rams or 1999 Colts turnaround. The Rams have been bad for a decade. It's not crazy for people to write them off as pretenders even if they play in the salary cap era. That's like saying people have been crazy to write off the Browns every single season or the next 2-3 years as playoff contenders and hide behind the salary cap excuse. Especially when they play in a division with two consistent playoff contenders with Pittsburgh and Baltimore. You're gonna sit here and tell me that people that write off teams like the Browns and Rams next season are fools? What?
There's nothing instrinsically bad about the Rams or the Browns as organizations.

My point is that any organization, no matter how bad in previous years, can become a contender, even an elite team, with the right coaching and a good draft or two or three.

The three greatest dynasties in NFL history (70s Steelers, 80s 49ers, and 00s Patriots) all sprung from the seeds of formerly wretched franchises that never won anything and lost tons of games every season, all until they got a good coach and had a few good drafts to build a core of great players.

From 1964-1971, the Pittsburgh Steelers won 5, 2, 5, 4, 2, 1, 5, and 6 games each season. In Chuck Noll's fourth year, after having a couple of really good drafts, the Steelers suddenly became the greatest dynasty in NFL history, winning 10+ games in seven of the next eigh years and won four Super Bowls with their core.

From 1973-1980, the San Francisco 49ers won 5, 6, 5, 8, 5, 2, 2, 6 games each season. In Bill Walsh's third year, after having a couple of really good drafts, the 49ers suddenly became another of the NFL's greatest dynasties, winning 10+ games in seventeen of the next eighteen seasons and four Super Bowls.

From 1989-1993, the New England Patriots won 5, 1, 6, 2, 5 games each season and were considered one of the worst franchises in the league. In Bill Parcells' second year, he won 10 games and turned them into a Super Bowl team two years later. Then his disciple, Bill Belichick, eventually became head coach and turned them into one the NFL's other great dynasties.


How about a more recent example?

From 2004-2010, the 49ers won 2, 4, 7, 5, 7, 8, and 6 games each season. Then suddenly, Jim Harbaugh + all of those first round picks on the roster maturing, and they're one of the better teams in the league.


I really don't see why the Rams can't become the next team to do this. Jeff Fisher has already spent a year there, and had a decent record, and a great record in his division. He's already had a few good drafts and these players are continuing to develop. In a year or two, I could easily see the Rams as a 12+ game winner and a perennial NFCCG contender.

I am not as optimistic about the Browns as I am about the Rams, but the Browns have already built up a few good drafts full of solid defensive cornerstones. They're in a division with two really old teams that will fall off in the future (Steelers / Ravens). They could easily run the AFC North in the future.

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Old 06-01-2013, 01:15 PM    (permalink
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I really don't see why the Rams can't become the next team to do this. Jeff Fisher
That's why. Fisher is a decent coach at being perpetually mediocre.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:23 PM    (permalink
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That's why. Fisher is a decent coach at being perpetually mediocre.
What does this mean? How do you know that he just never had the right mix of talent?

NFL dynasties are 20-30% about the coach and 70-80% about the talent. I feel as if the Rams, with all of their draft picks, have as good of a chance as any team to become the next great NFL dynasty.

Dick Vermeil was considered a Jeff Fisher-esque coach in his time in Philly. Got to a Super Bowl, but never won it. Coached some good teams, but never any great ones. Then he took some time off, came back, found the right mix of talent in St. Louis, and won a Super Bowl. I could see Jeff Fisher doing the exact same thing, and maybe even doing more.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:36 PM    (permalink
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Rams are really talented when you look at the roster. Their defense especially is really good. That DL could be flat out nasty. The NFCW potentially has 4 top 10 defences. But ultimately it depends on Bradford, and I'm not a huge believer in him so far. I just don't have a ton of confidence in what he has done so far, but he could easily change that perception this season. The OL could be improved but lets see how Long bounces back and if they can keep Saffold long term now. Jeff Fisher isn't a bad coach but he also isn't the best either. He could probably win with this talent but he wont make them more that what they are.


A lot of the time what keeps bad teams bad is poor talent evaluation. Bad drafting leads to bad talent and even decent coaches with bad talent will lose games. Too often are coaches fired before their plans start working and then any decently talented players get scrapped because they don't mesh with the new coaches schemes/plans. Its a vicious circle of bad drafting and making too many organizational changes too quick.

Also finding a legit franchise QB can change a teams fortunes in a second. The Colts and Lions are now decent contenters in the near future instead of being the awful teams they would have been. A team like the Chiefs would absolutely blow up if they had a QB. They are primed full of talent and just need it focused. They remind me of the 49ers a couple seasons ago before Harbaugh.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:40 PM    (permalink
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Dynasties don't necessarily need great QBs to run the show. Terry Bradshaw was nothing special. He just played alongside one of the greatest defenses in NFL history.

If the Rams get the talent right on defense (and they already have a great start with Long, Brockers, Quinn, Jenkins, Laurinitis and the like), they can win Super Bowls with Bradford mostly being a game manager in the mold of Terry Bradshaw or Eli Manning.
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Old 06-01-2013, 02:07 PM    (permalink
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I think now you have to have a great QB for a dynasty now. The Steeler dynasty was a long time ago. Getting that level of defensive talent is hard and now days keeping it together is even harder. The salary cap makes dynasties considerably harder than back then. A game manager is rarely enough in the modern offensive NFL. If you can build a HoF defense like the early 2000s Ravens & Bucs then sure you can have a game manager and maybe win a Superbowl, but generally you're going to need a top notch QB to win.

Eli isn't a game manager at all. While he is incosistent in the regular season, he has been great in the playoffs overall. He wasn't some passenger to the Giants two Superbowl wins recently. Eli was a huge part of those runs.
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Old 06-01-2013, 02:20 PM    (permalink
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I think now you have to have a great QB for a dynasty now. The Steeler dynasty was a long time ago. Getting that level of defensive talent is hard and now days keeping it together is even harder. The salary cap makes dynasties considerably harder than back then. A game manager is rarely enough in the modern offensive NFL. If you can build a HoF defense like the early 2000s Ravens & Bucs then sure you can have a game manager and maybe win a Superbowl, but generally you're going to need a top notch QB to win.

Eli isn't a game manager at all. While he is incosistent in the regular season, he has been great in the playoffs overall. He wasn't some passenger to the Giants two Superbowl wins recently. Eli was a huge part of those runs.

The level of Eli Manning and Joe Flacco (inconsistent, slightly above average regular season performer with 1-2 good postseason runs playing on a team with a great defense) is certainly attainable for Sam Bradford.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:01 PM    (permalink
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Most teams start to build momentum before taking that next step. Rarely do you see a 1999 Rams or 1999 Colts turnaround. The Rams have been bad for a decade. It's not crazy for people to write them off as pretenders even if they play in the salary cap era. That's like saying people have been crazy to write off the Browns every single season or the next 2-3 years as playoff contenders and hide behind the salary cap excuse. Especially when they play in a division with two consistent playoff contenders with Pittsburgh and Baltimore. You're gonna sit here and tell me that people that write off teams like the Browns and Rams next season are fools? What?
Hey, I haven't said that the Rams are ready to dominate their division or anything...I believe I said they are a year away from really contending...but do you really not see the momentum they are building? Last year they went from 2-14 to 7-8-1. They went 4-1-1 in their division. They have the makings of a Top 10 defense, with a lot of very young talent, and some legitimate depth for the first time in forever. Their offense has as much talent as any in the league, although it is very young and inexperienced. This will be Sam Bradford's first chance at having the same offensive coordinator 2 seasons in a row since he has been in the NFL.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, if they put up 9 or 10 wins this year, it shouldn't come as any huge surprise, like they came from out of nowhere to go from the cellar to legitimacy overnight. That process started a year ago.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:04 PM    (permalink
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What does this mean? How do you know that he just never had the right mix of talent?

NFL dynasties are 20-30% about the coach and 70-80% about the talent. I feel as if the Rams, with all of their draft picks, have as good of a chance as any team to become the next great NFL dynasty.

Dick Vermeil was considered a Jeff Fisher-esque coach in his time in Philly. Got to a Super Bowl, but never won it. Coached some good teams, but never any great ones. Then he took some time off, came back, found the right mix of talent in St. Louis, and won a Super Bowl. I could see Jeff Fisher doing the exact same thing, and maybe even doing more.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:07 PM    (permalink
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There's nothing instrinsically bad about the Rams or the Browns as organizations.

My point is that any organization, no matter how bad in previous years, can become a contender, even an elite team, with the right coaching and a good draft or two or three.

The three greatest dynasties in NFL history (70s Steelers, 80s 49ers, and 00s Patriots) all sprung from the seeds of formerly wretched franchises that never won anything and lost tons of games every season, all until they got a good coach and had a few good drafts to build a core of great players.

From 1964-1971, the Pittsburgh Steelers won 5, 2, 5, 4, 2, 1, 5, and 6 games each season. In Chuck Noll's fourth year, after having a couple of really good drafts, the Steelers suddenly became the greatest dynasty in NFL history, winning 10+ games in seven of the next eigh years and won four Super Bowls with their core.

From 1973-1980, the San Francisco 49ers won 5, 6, 5, 8, 5, 2, 2, 6 games each season. In Bill Walsh's third year, after having a couple of really good drafts, the 49ers suddenly became another of the NFL's greatest dynasties, winning 10+ games in seventeen of the next eighteen seasons and four Super Bowls.

From 1989-1993, the New England Patriots won 5, 1, 6, 2, 5 games each season and were considered one of the worst franchises in the league. In Bill Parcells' second year, he won 10 games and turned them into a Super Bowl team two years later. Then his disciple, Bill Belichick, eventually became head coach and turned them into one the NFL's other great dynasties.


How about a more recent example?

From 2004-2010, the 49ers won 2, 4, 7, 5, 7, 8, and 6 games each season. Then suddenly, Jim Harbaugh + all of those first round picks on the roster maturing, and they're one of the better teams in the league.


I really don't see why the Rams can't become the next team to do this. Jeff Fisher has already spent a year there, and had a decent record, and a great record in his division. He's already had a few good drafts and these players are continuing to develop. In a year or two, I could easily see the Rams as a 12+ game winner and a perennial NFCCG contender.

I am not as optimistic about the Browns as I am about the Rams, but the Browns have already built up a few good drafts full of solid defensive cornerstones. They're in a division with two really old teams that will fall off in the future (Steelers / Ravens). They could easily run the AFC North in the future.
This is a very debatable statement. I personally believe that the Cleveland Browns of the 1950's were the greatest dynasty ever. They went to 6 straight NFL Championship games, winning 3 of them. If you include the 4 years in the AAFC prior to joining the NFL, they went to 10 straight championships and won 7 of them.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:09 PM    (permalink
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That's why. Fisher is a decent coach at being perpetually mediocre.
Jeff Fisher had a horrible owner in Tennessee that had an alternate agenda besides winning football games.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:30 PM    (permalink
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Dynasties don't necessarily need great QBs to run the show. Terry Bradshaw was nothing special. He just played alongside one of the greatest defenses in NFL history.

If the Rams get the talent right on defense (and they already have a great start with Long, Brockers, Quinn, Jenkins, Laurinitis and the like), they can win Super Bowls with Bradford mostly being a game manager in the mold of Terry Bradshaw or Eli Manning.
Except this isn't the 1970's anymore where a defense can carry a dynasty. And comparing Bradshaw to Manning is ridiculous.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:48 PM    (permalink
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This is a very debatable statement. I personally believe that the Cleveland Browns of the 1950's were the greatest dynasty ever. They went to 6 straight NFL Championship games, winning 3 of them. If you include the 4 years in the AAFC prior to joining the NFL, they went to 10 straight championships and won 7 of them.
I'm mostly considering post Super Bowl era teams in this discussion. I don't really know enough about the pre-Super Bowl era to include those teams.
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:50 PM    (permalink
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Except this isn't the 1970's anymore where a defense can carry a dynasty. And comparing Bradshaw to Manning is ridiculous.
Every dynasty in the Super Bowl era was based first and foremost on defense, specifically passing defense. That includes the 70s Steelers, the 80s 49ers, the 90s Cowboys, the 00s Patriots...

When you think of the 80s 49ers you think of Joe Montana throwing to Jerry Rice but it was really their passing defense that went from bottom-10 to top-3 in 1981 that made those championships a reality. And Rice didn't even come aboard until after they had won titles already.

And when you think of the 00 Patriots I'm sure you think of Tom Brady but during each of their championship seasons, Brady was more of a game manager playing smart and efficient alongside a top-3 defense and a strong running game (possible because of that defense keeping the opponent's score low). Since their passing defense has gone away, they haven't won a single title, despite Brady being a much better QB.

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Old 06-01-2013, 04:00 PM    (permalink
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That's why. Fisher is a decent coach at being perpetually mediocre.
So you believe that Fisher's coaching ability will prohibit the Rams from being a good team? That's ridiculous.

Fisher's a terrific coach. For a guy who has never had consistency at the QB position, what he's done with his teams is pretty impressive.

And the funny thing is that if Mike Jones doesn't make one tackle, magically you CAN'T say that anymore. Well I'll disagree with it anyway. It's all on Bradford. You saw Fisher's finger prints on the team last year. They were much improved and much tougher. But he can only go as far as his QB can take him. When he had McNair, the Titans were contenders almost every year. Then he had Vince Young and somehow worked magic to get him to two winning seasons. Then Young flamed out because he's a pampered baby with no mental toughness.

I'd take Fisher over the large majority of coaches in the league. "Perpetually mediocre" = I looked at his career winning % and it's not that good + he never won a SB. It's stupid. He can lead this Rams team to big things, but only if Bradford steps up.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:03 PM    (permalink
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The level of Eli Manning and Joe Flacco (inconsistent, slightly above average regular season performer with 1-2 good postseason runs playing on a team with a great defense) is certainly attainable for Sam Bradford.
Does anyone consider the Giants or Ravens a dynasty? You can't afford a SB caliber QB and dynasty capable team around him for more than a couple years.
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Most misleading 10+ sack season EVER.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:06 PM    (permalink
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So you believe that Fisher's coaching ability will prohibit the Rams from being a good team? That's ridiculous.

Fisher's a terrific coach. For a guy who has never had consistency at the QB position, what he's done with his teams is pretty impressive.

And the funny thing is that if Mike Jones doesn't make one tackle, magically you CAN'T say that anymore. Well I'll disagree with it anyway. It's all on Bradford. You saw Fisher's finger prints on the team last year. They were much improved and much tougher. But he can only go as far as his QB can take him. When he had McNair, the Titans were contenders almost every year. Then he had Vince Young and somehow worked magic to get him to two winning seasons. Then Young flamed out because he's a pampered baby with no mental toughness.

I'd take Fisher over the large majority of coaches in the league. "Perpetually mediocre" = I looked at his career winning % and it's not that good + he never won a SB. It's stupid. He can lead this Rams team to big things, but only if Bradford steps up.
So to make this argument work, do we just throw out all of the years where Air McNair was still a beast and the Tits were still 1 and done in the playoffs most of the time? Or just hope nobody asks about it?
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Most misleading 10+ sack season EVER.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:10 PM    (permalink
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So to make this argument work, do we just throw out all of the years where Air McNair was still a beast and the Tits were still 1 and done in the playoffs most of the time? Or just hope nobody asks about it?
I don't see making the playoffs as mediocrity, no. It's extremely difficult to win your division or 10+ games, so losing in the playoffs does not prove he's a mediocre coach or, more importantly, that something in his coaching disposition makes him + these Rams destined to be mediocore going forward.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:17 PM    (permalink
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Undeniable Machine.
Is this in reference to my words during a 150-30 3-game stretch that included the 49ers?

58-0 vs ARZ
50-17 vs BUF
42-13 vs SF

Were they not?
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:28 PM    (permalink
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So to make this argument work, do we just throw out all of the years where Air McNair was still a beast and the Tits were still 1 and done in the playoffs most of the time? Or just hope nobody asks about it?
What does this mean in the end for Fisher's future, though?

If we looked back at Dick Vermeil's career in Philly when he retired for the first time, I'm sure we could say the same thing. "Never won the big game! Good coach, but only got to the Super Bowl once and never won it! He can't possibly win a Super Bowl with a new team, right?"

If we looked back at Tom Coughlin's career in Jacksonville, say, in 2004 when he was first hired by the Giants, we could say something similar. "Good coach, but he could never get those good Jacksonville teams over the hump! He got to an AFCCG but he never won the big game! He is what he is! He's too old to change now! Perpetually good but never a Super Bowl winner!"

What someone does in the past doesn't disqualify them from doing something different in the future. Sometimes a change of scenery, or a difference in talent, makes a formerly "just a good" coach a Super Bowl winner with a new team.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:48 PM    (permalink
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The level of Eli Manning and Joe Flacco (inconsistent, slightly above average regular season performer with 1-2 good postseason runs playing on a team with a great defense) is certainly attainable for Sam Bradford.
But they Ravens honestly didn't have a great defense. This year was not the usual Baltimore. Injuries beat us this team and it showed. They were a mid level defense. They couldn't stop the run and teams put a lot of points on them. Flacco carried the offense and the team.

I think Bradford has the ability and the team around him now, but I'm still not sure on him. He has every opportunity to prove me wrong but it won't be easy. Flacco showed flashes of post season ability the past couple years and then really put it together this year.
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Old 06-01-2013, 04:52 PM    (permalink
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Is this in reference to my words during a 150-30 3-game stretch that included the 49ers?

58-0 vs ARZ
50-17 vs BUF
42-13 vs SF

Were they not?
You said it like 2 months ago describing that period. They were playing awesome but the phrase "Undeniable Machine" still makes me giggle.
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