NFL 2013

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by Deacon » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:11 pm

Whoa. Bucs make a QB change. This is your team, Cid, what do you think?
The follies which a man regrets the most in his life are those which he didn't commit when he had the opportunity. - Helen Rowland, A Guide to Men, 1922

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:45 pm

Not feeling too good about it. Or anything that has happened with the Buccaneers since the end of last season.

I don't even really know where to start. I guess with Freeman, who I have always liked. I'm going to miss Josh Freeman. He was the only Buccaneers quarterback I have ever seen that has been able to win a game by himself. Usually they have "game manager" quarterbacks who, if we fans are lucky, are good at not throwing interceptions and little else. Brad Johnson, as things stand, is the greatest quarterback in Buccaneers history. (Steve Young and Vinnie Testaverde don't count, they were awful in Tampa Bay.) So really, the potential to be really good was enough for me. I was always sold on Freeman. Plus I could make Half-Life references, which I enjoyed. But the fact is, he's only good if everything goes right for him. If his receivers drop passes, he sulks, and starts missing his throws, and holding on to the ball too long. This happened Sunday--he had a great start against the Patriots, but then a couple of drives stalled when his receivers dropped touchdown passes and he melted down after that. After five years, he's never improved his responses to bad luck. One can only wait so long. So I guess he has to go. Though I'm afraid he's going to make the Bucs look stupid the way Drew Brees continues to make the Chargers look stupid.

But it's not just the quarterback. The entire offense is weak. They don't have enough passing targets, with no tight ends to speak of and two viable receivers. The playcalling is terrible--most sequences involve two HB dives and a screen pass on third and nine. I'm not sure Tom Brady could win with the playcalling Freeman has had to deal with. The defense, which was supposed to be really good, has let the team down when they need it the most, blowing games to the Jets and Saints that could have been wins. Ugly wins, but who knows how the team would respond to the ball bouncing their way? The defense has also been prone to headhunting. Now I liked John Lynch and Warren Sapp, but for all they did they never got accused of actively trying to injure people the way Goldson has been. And the rules aren't changing anyway. If Goldson is going to complain that he can't tackle another way, that makes him a liability, because that flag is going to come out every time he drills someone up the middle. They have no kicking game as they lost their regular kicker for the season. And the coaches? Well, Greg Schiano is not liked in NFL circles it seems.

It's just a mess. They're less talented than they seemed coming into the season. Now they're on a rookie quarterback who, well, I googled the phrase "Mike Glennon ceiling" and got very little in terms of what his strengths may be. And it gets worse.

See, this could easily turn into a tank job. And that's fine if you're a Jets or a Steelers team that has a huge fan base and will sell merchandise and tickets. The Bucs don't have that. They already have a problem with ticket sales, and it's only going to get worse during a "rebuilding" phase that might take several years. And a new coach. Empty seats mean TV blackouts, which means less money for everybody, which means that the dreaded Los Angeles rumors could start up again. And that's not even considering what happens if whoever they would be hoping to draft turns out to not be very good.

Four weeks ago I was hoping for a sneaky playoff run. Now next year doesn't even look promising. Maybe Mike Glennon is some miracle cure-all, but I think the Buccaneers rolled a lot of dice in the past couple of years, and sadly it looks like they've all come up snake eyes.
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Re: NFL 2013

Post by Deacon » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:01 pm

Wow. That just sounds terrible. As hard as I am on Romo, he's at least not a terrible/useless quarterback, just not much improved over the years and generally not anywhere near as good as Jerry Jones thinks he is.
The follies which a man regrets the most in his life are those which he didn't commit when he had the opportunity. - Helen Rowland, A Guide to Men, 1922

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by ampersand » Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:44 am

Since when did NFL teams decide it was going to be the NBA and tank to get a high draft seed?

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:40 am

Some thoughts so far:

-Greg Schiano is taking all the pleasure out of watching Buccaneers football. I can't properly describe just how much he has sucked this season. He's run the quarterback out of town, now he's ruining a rookie, he's leaking negative stories about players, he gets really mad when questioned in the media, his coordinators are doing the old "well if the fans don't like it maybe they should coach" routine...he's approaching Bobby Valentine levels of terrible coaching. It is entirely possible that Schiano actually is Valentine in a costume. It's a shame I don't watch college football anymore or believe any of its lies. Used to be in a season like this I could watch college football and get my hopes up for some draft pick.

-At the moment, if I had the choice I'd make Cincinnati's defensive coordinator or Kansas City's defensive coordinator the Bucs' head coach next season. I like the idea of hiring a longtime NFL assistant, giving him a long leash, and reaping the rewards. Also, hiring someone who fits the profile Tony Dungy once cut (longtime assistant, well-respected, interviewed for jobs in the past but never got them) is always a good idea.

-You want a sign that there are cracks in the Patriots' armor? They're currently being upstaged by the Red Sox and not responding with ridiculous scoring outbursts as if to say "you know, most places care more about football than baseball." Many of Tom Brady's best games have come under those circumstances, and I thought for sure having his comeback over the Saints overshadowed by Ortiz' grand slam was going to set Brady off. Can't believe they lost to the Jets.

-Monte Kiffin has rewarded my faith in the former Buccaneers' defensive coordinator by murdering my NFL pool week after damn week. I take Dallas and they lose, I take their opponent and suddenly Kiffin's shutting down gimmicky offenses again. Make up your mind, old man! Are you going to be the genius that won Jon Gruden a Super Bowl or the whatever-it-is-you-thought-you-were in college football? Figure it out so I can pick Cowboys games with some degree of certainty please.

-Beware the last undefeated team. I'm convinced that losing a game before your bye week is important. You should know what your team's flaws are so you can make adjustments. The last undefeated team can become complacent. Good luck, Kansas City.
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Re: NFL 2013

Post by ampersand » Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:40 am

  • I'm convinced Frazier was forced to start (and continue to start) Freeman at gunpoint (probably the owner) after that <Walton>horrible</Walton> performance on Monday Night Football. It was so bad, ESPN's Sportscenter anchors were apologizing for the game moments after it ended.
  • How interesting is it to go from Genius to Old after one bad performance by Peyton Manning? The real issue that Indy has shown is if you're a punch-in-the-mouth kind of team, you can really rattle Manning and to an even greater extent, Brady. Of course, you still have to survive their finesse.
  • I'm not saying Dallas has clinched the division, but they haven't lost against anyone in the NFC East yet, and that might be what allows them to host a playoff game.
  • Oh, and that penalty that allowed the Jets to move up 15 yards, get a better spot and win the game with a field goal against the Pats? Does it really have to be 15 yards and an automatic first down?

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by Deacon » Wed Oct 23, 2013 3:32 am

If it's 4th and 16 you'd be annoyed about the lack of an automatic 1st down.
The follies which a man regrets the most in his life are those which he didn't commit when he had the opportunity. - Helen Rowland, A Guide to Men, 1922

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:12 pm

No, really. That was a ridiculous penalty. Someone pushed one of his teammates nowhere near where the ball was actually kicked, and it's a fifteen yard penalty? Also, couldn't tell on TV: Was the flag thrown before or after the kick was no good?
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Re: NFL 2013

Post by ampersand » Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:49 am

It has been an ugly week in American Professional Football. Incognito taking measures to "toughen" another offensive linemen too far in a culture and in a media where bullying is a topic like never before. And the only good thing for the NFL is that it overshadowed reports that 5 living Hall of Famers, including Tony Dorsett, announced they've been diagnosed with CTE. Dorsett admitted he's been identified as clinically depressed, probably because of those hits.

This has stemmed commentary about how this year the play hasn't been as good as it has been because of the rule changes, and a controversy in the the college game where their own rule that ejects players who directly hit players with their helmets a) isn't deterring the hits and b) coaches and administrators think their own penalty is too severe and ought to be nerfed. I've read where one commentator feels football needs a new Teddy Roosevelt who proposed rule changes in 1905 after 19 players died from neck injuries.

Then I think about the other football. There's never any off-season, people are grumbling that the 2018 World Cup will have to be moved to the winter after Blatter insisted that Qatar could host the games in the traditional summer months. There were the UEFA Champions and Europa League matches this week. And I'm reading stories where there's complaints that the white football players should stand united if they wanted to help get rid of racism from the fans in the stadiums.

And there's also concern about the hitting and tackling in football that might lead to cases of CTE where they don't wear pads, unlike the American variant. Harder to fake a concussion than it is to fake a leg cramp.

And all sports, I feel, aren't fully aware of the impact of a first world problem: the technology of the HDTV and the realization they do not need to actually go to the game to enjoy it or even have a better time than actually being at the game.

I think we are at a point in these two sports that a tipping point has passed and things will have to change in order to keep both sports near to the success they've had for a good period of time. Both have a deep cultural impact in the past, but nothing says that the cultural impact can change as mothers persuade or force their children to play something else entirely. And it doesn't look like neither sport is fully aware of this realization that things have changed.

At the very least, both sports should be aware that they are the last refuge of people like a Richie Incognito who has the mentality to not know nor care about the lines between taunting a player in the sport and outside the sport.

Wouldn't be surprised if thirty years down the road, World Football's impact is lessened, and American Football is gone altogether because neither sport's highest governing body identified the tipping point and tried to evolve with it.

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:36 pm

ampersand wrote:It has been an ugly week in American Professional Football.
Week? It's been an ugly year! More CTE revelations. Aaron Hernandez. The return of Sean Payton like he was suspended for a minor offense and not allegedly being part of a bounty program. (I'll never understand how an NFL figure, no matter what they did to get suspended, is greeted when that suspension ends as though he were a conquering hero.)
ampersand wrote:And the only good thing for the NFL is that it overshadowed reports that 5 living Hall of Famers, including Tony Dorsett, announced they've been diagnosed with CTE.
ampersand wrote:This has stemmed commentary about how this year the play hasn't been as good as it has been because of the rule changes
...And here you have a fundamental problem that is going to get bigger and bigger. This could be the part of the CTE stuff that really hurts the NFL. A lot of very vocal fans hate these rules. These fans do not particularly give a shit whether the players they watch are in severe danger or not. After all, those players knew what they were getting into. (...Well, kind of. But not really. We're just learning now what they got themselves into.)

Right now, the NFL has seen a demand, mostly from its players, to try to better protect football players from long-term injury. Meanwhile, there is significant demand to go back to the old ways from fans who want to see big hits again. And that part, I can kind of empathize with. I miss John Lynch too. But...

...I really don't want to watch a man die on national television. And we're definitely headed in that direction. We've all seen at least one hit where, for a moment afterward, you thought the guy who got hit might be dead. Sadly, it happens about once a season now, but fortunately the players always give the thumbs up. One of these days, someone's not going to be able to. If you don't believe that you don't understand the simple physics of 300 pound men throwing themselves at 180 pound men. So I don't care if it's "pussifying" football, something definitely has to be done.

Of course, that might not prevent the nightmare scenario. Not all bad hits can be prevented. A lot of the worst ones are accidental, where a player ducks right as another player is trying to tackle them lower and suddenly they're helmet-to-helmet. No rule change gets rid of those accidents, and we could still see some things we don't want to. It is, in a way, the price of admission. But lowering those odds seems like a good idea to me.

But it gets deeper. Add in the Incognito stuff to this fan outcry of "it's a man's game, you need to be tough." Is this what we want football to be? Is this what football is to a lot of people? There's an obvious answer and no football fan wants to admit it, but yeah. It is. That's why the stereotype of a high school football player (an often inaccurate one, as stereotypes usually are) involves preying on the weaker students. We know full well that there are football players who have been "toughening people up" since they realized at about age six that they were bigger than everybody else. And then we're surprised--actually surprised--when a football player turns out to be a nearly psychotic bully out to get a rookie from a nice background with a Stanford education. Gee people, really? The same people saying football is a man's game for tough guys are surprised by this?

I don't have answers. I don't know what you do about this. But it's there. It's there, and fans need to stop ignoring it as someone tossing a wet blanket on your fun. Not only do I not want the players I watch to die on the field, I also would much rather root for a league full of Warrick Dunns than Richie Incognitos, and we know which one is more plentiful in today's league.

If fans keep fighting the "watering down" of football, I want those people to admit that they basically want gladiator fights. The rest of us want our football back, dammit, and these thugs need to shut their damn mouths.
ampersand wrote:Then I think about the other football.
You know what I miss? I miss when I'd read a headline about a football player saying something racist and/or offensive, and I would know immediately that they're talking about a soccer player from Europe. Now we've got Riley Cooper and Richie Incognito. Damn. It was nice when we had the football that didn't have racism conversations on a regular basis. But that's what we get for worshiping the Premiership and Champions League. We wanted to be more like Europe, and here we are. Damn.
ampersand wrote:And I'm reading stories where there's complaints that the white football players should stand united if they wanted to help get rid of racism from the fans in the stadiums.
Problem: Outside of the NCAA, which creates and enables utter monsters, FIFA might be the most corrupt sports organization in the world. That previous sentence was written at a time when the IOC still exists, so that's how bad those groups are.
ampersand wrote:And all sports, I feel, aren't fully aware of the impact of a first world problem: the technology of the HDTV and the realization they do not need to actually go to the game to enjoy it or even have a better time than actually being at the game.
The NFL, European soccer leagues, and Major League Baseball all fully understand this and have already moved to fix the problem. MLB makes the majority of its money from television, and teams get their largest revenues from television deals or proprietary networks such as NESN. Attendance helps, but not nearly as much as you might expect. The NFL has made it so the product at home is deliberately more enjoyable than the product at the stadium, between replay reviews, TV timeouts, the amount of coverage of the NFL on television, and products like Sunday Ticket and the Red Zone channel. The Premiership, the Champions League, La Liga, and the Bundesliga are all taking shares of American television money too. That they go for a world audience eliminates any worry that they'll struggle in the future with ticket sales. The next step's going to be when teams build smaller stadiums that almost resemble large television studios.
ampersand wrote:Wouldn't be surprised if thirty years down the road, World Football's impact is lessened, and American Football is gone altogether because neither sport's highest governing body identified the tipping point and tried to evolve with it.
I'll take a crack at predicting something like this.

In a few decades football will be a regional sport the way baseball is now. There's just too much cultural attachment to the game in places like Texas for it to go away entirely. It's not just the NFL, remember, it's the NCAA and the high school associations. NFL ratings will be down from what they are now, but there will still be pockets of extremely loyal fans and a high enough profile in other markets that it will continue to succeed. However, while football will still be a major sport, the amount of young people playing the sport will drop dramatically as places outside of those pockets of support stop putting a focus on youth football.

Meanwhile, the other football watches as other sports encroach on its "world's game" status. I can already assert that we have great golfers from a wider range of countries than great footballers. (Yeah really. Name a famous Austrlian soccer player. How about one from Fiji? How about South Africa? Canada? Do they play soccer in the DMZ between the Koreas?) But then there's basketball (huge following in Europe, even bigger in China, massive sport in Israel, growing in Central and South America), baseball (Japan, Korea, Taiwan, the Caribbean, the Netherlands, making pushes into Spain, Brazil, and Australia), hockey (everywhere where ponds freeze), cricket (biggest sport in India, which is significant). Part of the reason soccer is what it is has to do with the lack of other team sports options in Europe and South America. No longer.
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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Sun Nov 17, 2013 4:09 pm

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by ampersand » Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:26 pm

Tampa Bay has won two games in a row. Pity they don't play Jacksonville next to win the Florida-Georgia derby.

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by The Cid » Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:52 pm

Coaches already fired:

-Jim Schwartz of the Lions
-Greg Schiano of the Buccaneers
-Mike Shanahan of the Redskins
-Rob Chudzinski of the Browns
-Leslie Frazer of the Vikings
-Gary Kubiak of the Texans

Coaches NOT fired:

-Jason Garrett
-Rex Ryan
-Mike Tomlin (duh)

I'm glad the Glazers wasted no time firing Schiano. He was an embarrassment. Better yet, the rumors that they may be looking to hire Lovie Smith (former Dungy assistant) and bring Rich McKay back as GM sound awesome. If you want to make it perfect, it looks like Dallas is likely going to fire Monte Kiffin, meaning he'd be available to return as DC. Just so long as the Bobby V-iano era is over, trying to turn back the clock to the Dungy years is fine with me.

I really expected Dallas to fire Garrett and use Bill Callahan and Monte Kiffin to lure Jon Gruden out of the broadcast booth, as those two were the best coordinators Gruden ever had and all. (I mean, why else did Jerry hire them?)

Jerry Jones' reaction to Orton's late interception was awesome. I loved how everyone in the owners' booth with him took off for the door before he even turned around.
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Re: NFL 2013

Post by Deacon » Thu Jan 02, 2014 3:19 pm

You really expected them to get rid of Garrett? I wouldn't be surprised. It seems like Garrett is somehow still too green, like he needs a few more years under the wing of an experienced head coach.
The follies which a man regrets the most in his life are those which he didn't commit when he had the opportunity. - Helen Rowland, A Guide to Men, 1922

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Re: NFL 2013

Post by ampersand » Sat Jan 04, 2014 3:31 am

Playoff Forecasts:
Kansas City 7, Indianapolis 24. Andy Reid is the 2010's version of Marty Schottenheimer, except he actually reached a Super Bowl once. I don't think that's going to happen this time. Plus Chiefs went (2 - 5) the last seven games. Not good.

New Orleans 24, Philadelphia 27, OT. Everyone is thinking this is going to be a high scoring affair. I don't think that is going to happen, especially in a relatively cold game. Can Chip Kelly scheme long running drives that limits how much time Drew Brees will have on the field?

San Diego 24, Cincinnati 0. While Andy Dalton may have a pretty competent team, Rivers is "peaking at the right time." Plus, I'm expecting Marvin Lewis to do something stupid, which is why he's (0 - 5) in the playoffs.

San Francisco 14, Green Bay 21. Aaron Rodgers is the reason why the Packers will win this game. He's the kind of guy you'd bet your mother's savings on.

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