Tuesday, October 11, 2011

In Which Adrian Peterson Runs and the Bears' O-Line Hides

Life is like a box of chocolates in two ways: you never know what you’re going to get, and if it doesn’t have nougat, you better elude it.  Sticking with the former, we’re switching up the program by having Alex write his impressions of Week 5’s action as Jon-Michael takes a break from his usual responsibilities to insult a Native American.  Let’s get to the words.

Bills 31, Eagles 24
As an Eagles fan, I am incredibly disappointed in the lack of discipline that this team is playing with.  There are a lot of turnovers, penalties (Juqua Parker, I’m staring straight at you, bro), and clock management errors that are holding this team back.  The offense has gained 513 and 489 yards the last two weeks, but poor red-zone offense and horrendous defense have been their undoing.  I am not surprised that the defense hasn’t stopped the run, given the way that the defensive line is structured, but it’s the pass defense (which was a little better this week) that has been disappointing as well.  The defense is going to get better as the players get more time in the new system, but it’s really the lack of ball security from the offense (14 turnovers the past four games) that’s my concern.  I’m surprised that Lesean McCoy hasn’t fumbled more, given the way he holds the ball while running.

Chiefs 28, Colts 24
You have to feel really bad for the Colts’ remaining roster, as they are trying as hard as they can to win a game or two without Peyton Manning.  Curtis Painter has done a lot better than I thought he would, and he appears to really like Pierre Garcon (7 receptions, 271 yards, 4 TD in Painter’s two starts).  However, the Colts’ attempt was once again thwarted, as Matt Cassel had an incredible game, completing over 70 percent of his passes and throwing 4 touchdowns (2 to the apparently-not-a-seven-game-wonder Dwayne Bowe).  Now, if only the Chiefs hadn’t lost Tony Moeaki, Eric Berry, and Jamaal Charles for the year in the span of three weeks…

Seahawks 36, Giants 25
Classic Eli Manning.  And, as it appears this season, classic 2011 NFC East quarterbacks.  Put up a bunch of yards and touchdowns (Eli had 420 and 3, respectively), then make the key turnover to lose your team the game.  Also, after scoring 30 points in their first three games combined, the Seahawks have scored at least 30 points in each of their last two games.

Vikings 34, Cardinals 10
Just watch Adrian Peterson’s last two touchdowns.  

Raiders 25, Texans 20
The Raiders win one for their late owner Al Davis, per his eternal request (“Just Win Baby”), despite a heroic effort from Matt Schaub (there was actually an egregious dropped pass at the Raiders’ 10 yard line that would have scored a touchdown, but the Texans ended up settling for a field goal).  Schaub has a lot of similar characteristics to Tony Romo, in the sense that he puts up big numbers and wins a lot of games late, but also is likely to make that one dumb interception, as he did in the red zone at the very end of this game.  It’s funny how nobody talks about Schaub’s value to his team and whether or not he should be starting, but Romo gets criticized up and down ESPN.  That’s what Romo gets for being on what used to be America’s Team, I suppose.

Chargers 29, Broncos 24
The Tim Tebow Era, Part II has begun in earnest.  Well, if a 4-for-10 for 79 yards line excites you.  Actually, it appears to excite the Broncos roster, as Tebow’s entrance spurred a near-comeback, as Tebow was 2-3 for 51 yards on a 0:24 drive that almost won the game.  The Chargers did their usual “play down to the competition” thing, eeking out a win against a clearly inferior opponent.  They appear to finally not be throwing away the first half of the season, and perhaps this is the year they make a legitimate run at the AFC title.

Lions 21, Bears 10
This was a sloppy, sloppy game, in which 26 penalties were called.  One of the Bears' first drives lasted just under 7 minutes, yet ended in them failing to convert a 4th down.  This drive may have been the most agonizing I have ever seen.  Here's the rundown of this drive, which started at the Bears' 18 and ended at the Lions' 26: 
-- 6 penalties, 5 by the Lions
-- 1 challenge from each team, with the Lions benefitting both times
-- 2 timeouts taken by the Bears, meaning that they spent all three of their first half timeouts on this drive, which ended in no points.
-- When you remove the yardage from penalties and such, the Bears ran 11 plays to completion and gained 23 total yards on those plays (7 of those plays involved Matt Forte, and gained 15 of those yards).  The drive somehow totaled 62 yards. 

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