Monday, November 26, 2007

Thoughts on a Coltsless Sunday

  • Vince Young is finally killing the Titans. Once Haynesworth went down, their D couldn't carry the team anymore, and VY is getting exposed. He's playing basically the same as he has for the last year and a half. He hasn't changed, the Titans D has. Why can't he 'just win' games now?
  • I think it's pretty clear why the Eagles let Jeff Garcia walk. His back injury doesn't bode well for the Bucs.
  • Jags are going down this week. I think the Colts win big. (ok, I know. I say that every week).
  • Have any two 1 and 2 seeds ever fallen as hard and as fast as the Chargers and Ravens? Neither one of those teams is doing anything this year.
  • I know the Bears won, but that fourth down play was crazy. You can't exactly call that a high percentage deal. I doubt they complete that 5 times out of 50. (or 10% of the time for the fractionally challenged).
  • Cutler is becoming a player. Grossman is terrifying (in the bad sense). Why would anyone kick to Hester? The Bears block special teams plays exquisitely.
  • I think we all knew the Pats were coming back in that game; we've seen it from the Colts all the time. Really good teams don't lose that game, and it had the same kind of certainty that the Colts/KC game had last week. I'm not going to comment again on the weaknesses of the Pats that came out this game. We all know what they are. The rest of the NFL does too. What's important in this game is that the Pats handled the pressure well and won. STYLE POINTS DON'T MATTER. Wins matter. This win is just as good for the Pats at 31-28 as it would have been at 40-10. Brady made his best case of the year for MVP.
  • It's still amazing to me that the Dolphins would have traded Welker in order to draft Ted Ginn Jr. That exchange makes incredibly little sense. There is no one home in the front offices of the Dolphins.

Demond Sanders: Miami and Oakland should be kicked out of the league for those idiotic trades last year. Still, I wasn't terribly surprised that the Eagles played the Pats so closely. The New England defense hasn't been the same the last couple of years. Losing Roosevelt Colvin early in the game didn't help any. The Eagles offensive line did a good job and their receivers made catches. The Colts did neither of these things in their game against the Pats.

The Patriots offense is hard to stop, but the Eagles and Colts showed you can slow them down by doing exactly what teams have done to the Colts for the past couple years. Take away the deep ball and force them to throw underneath. This shortens the game and forces the offense to play mistake-free. The Patriots won last night because they didn't turn the ball over, but Brady had several balls that could have been intercepted. The Eagles may have won if they had managed to force just one turnover. Credit the Patriots for a tough win, but the quest for perfection just gets tougher from here.


Anonymous said...

Playoff Rules:
Run the ball.
Stop the run.

The Pats can't do either. What makes everyone assume they'll do well in the playoffs against decent competition?

zac said...

Yeah, 54 pass attempts won't work well in the winter, especially against our secondary.

Bob M. said...

Agreed on the Pats run game. Are they saving Maroney for the post-season? Or is he the new Fragile Freddy Taylor? Actually, since Taylor just crested 10k yards, which I suspect Maroney will never approach, I am at a loss for a comp.

I am not quite sure of how the playoffs will pan out, but would find it immensely satisfying to get some measure of revenge on SD at home, and NE on the road. And that's looking possible, if Pittsburgh doesn't mess it up. Eh, beating them would make my January warmer as well.

Captain Painfully Obvious signing off.

Bob M. said...

If anyone is looking for a crazy suggestion for playing NE's spread formation here it is: with no running threat, put a LB over each WR to clean his clock at the line and throw off timing. CBs and Safeties play their regular game. There is a risk that the 10-yard routes will be wide open if we whiff, but doing that for one play, and then mimicking it every once in a while might mess up NE's play calling enough. (To paraphrase TMQ, you have to punch the bully in the mouth and not dance with him.)

They'd then put in an RB out in spread and if we mimic the LB strategy, motion him to the backfield for a run, whereupon we resume a normal D. I think the Eagles have been the first team to rough up the Pats' receivers, and it worked pretty well. We can't count on 100+ penalty yards from them again....

colts girl said...

I was just glad to see another team actually PLAY against the F-Pats. It seems like so many teams have decided to lie down and die against them; it's obvious that they aren't the unstoppable super-power everyone talks about when faced with a team that comes to play rather than a team wanting to become a doormat. Yeah, they're good. But they aren't "the best the league has ever seen."

Still looking forward to Foxboro. It'll be nice to give them the beat-down in their own stadium...

JC said...

Word for the day = BLUEPRINT

I've heard it over and over.

When you hold a team to 31 points (and a negated touchdown on a bullshit offensive PI call) and 400 yards on 8 possessions, that's not much of a blueprint, is it?

Take away Moss, and Welker will beat you. He's the best slot guy in the NFL and showed it last night.

zac said...

jc- i think they are referring to an offensive blueprint, not a defensive one...although the Pats offense only scored 24 points and with only 1 Brady TD pass.

Jesse said...

The thing about Vince Young is, he is in this third year now. This is the year where you need to start showing consistent 250 yards per game in the air, and a touchdown or 2 passing. He's nowhere CLOSE to that. They refuse to let him throw the ball a lot. THEY KNOW!

Brady, Manning, Brees, other QBs in the third year were passing 40 times a game and learning how to be a QB. This is not Vince.

Demond Sanders said...

The Pats played well on offense despite the blitz pressure. Welker was great. The Eagles played it correctly from a strategy standpoint, but they dropped interceptions, missed tackles and didn't force fumbles. No one said it would be easy to beat the Pats, but they can be beaten.

I agree that the blueprint is more for an opponent's offense, although frankly we didn't see anything we didn't already know. Stay away from Asante Samuel and attack Harrison, the LBs, and the other DBs in the interior of the field. If Marvin Harrison, Wayne, and Gonzalez are on the field I'd say the Colts are an even match with a slight edge on defense.

Bob M. said...

I suggest you check out the Pats fans puling and whining in the Audibles discussion threat at FO.

Whining about what? Randy Moss being held! By brutal and illegal DBs! And it was really, really unfair. Really.

Not all are hypocrites, but enough for a laugh.

Coltsgirl, the Pats might well be the best ever. I would not be surprised either way. Then again, two years ago at this time the Colts were 11-0 and being touted as possibly one of the best ever... and we know that was not quite true by season's end. Thanks Nick Harper's wife, and Vandy, and Tarik "Offsides" Glenn, and ....

I think a healthy rematch in f-boro will be great--both a good game and a decent chance at a Colts win.

DZ said...

Nick Harper's or wol (weep out loud). Ugh.