• Author:
  • Published: Nov 25th, 2014
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Browns: Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while.

Browns: Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while.

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Note: On NNR today Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports & I discussed the Browns Falcons game. The podcast is on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

Also check out the interview with Brown’s all pro Felix Wright also on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

The Good: This is exactly the kind of game that the Browns would have lost in previous years. But despite 3 picks by Brian Hoyer and a last minute field goal by the Falcons, Hoyer drove the Browns down the field for a winning field goal.

The running game came back with the return of WR Josh Gordon. That is not a coincidence. Gordon’s presents on the field prevented the Falcons from bringing 47 guys into the box to stop the run. It also opened up the passing game by reducing the double team on the other receivers.

In particular RB Isaiah Cromwell ran very well. His last TD was a piece of art worthy of hanging in any museum. His vision and jump step are outstanding.

The Bad: The one thing that has kept Hoyer as the starting QB is the lack of turnovers. But against a below average backfield, he had 3 picks yesterday. In his last 4 games he has thrown 3 touchdowns but 6 picks. For the season he now has 11 touchdowns and 8 picks. That is not taking good care of the ball. I blame Hoyer for 2 of the 3 picks. There is no reason to throw into coverage with a 1st and goal at the 6. Not only was that a bad pass, it was a bad call. The last pick was just miss-communication between Hoyer and Gordon. Given the short time they had to work together this week, I can excuse that.

The O line has regressed in the last four games. The line has allowed 6 sacks and nearly constant pressure. That was even true against a poor front 7 of the Falcons. In addition it has struggled to get to the 2nd level blocking the run. It needs to get a lot better if the Browns have any hope of contending for a playoff spot.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

 

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  • Author:
  • Published: Nov 21st, 2014
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Will the Browns beat the Falcons in Atlanta?

Will the Browns beat the Falcons in Atlanta?

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Note: On NNR today Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports & I previewed the Browns/Falcons and other games this week. The podcast is on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

Before the loss to the Texans last week most Browns fans would have said ‘Of course the Browns can win.’ Now I am not that sure they will win.

There are positive factors going into the game including the return of WR Josh Gordon. The biggest impact of Gordon’s return will be on the running game. It is unlikely that the Falcons or anyone else will feel free to bring 9 or 10 defenders into the box with Gordon on the field. Given the lack of productivity of the Falcon secondary, they will be very aware of Gordon.

Without the ability of the defense to over load the box, the Browns SHOULD be able to run the ball. But the Browns have struggled to run the ball since the loss of C Alex Mack. But the problem running the ball has not been limited to his replacement Nick McDonald. The issue has spread like a bad cold all along the O line. It will be up to RB Isaiah Crowell and others to take full advantage of the reduced defensive presence in the box.

The biggest question is can the Browns D backfield cover the outstanding passing game of the Falcons?

The Falcons have two outstanding wide outs including Julio Jones and Roddy White. While I expect Joe Haden to be able to limit one of them, will the other CB candidates be able to limit the other? While CB K’Waun Williams has been a free agent jewel, 1st round pick (8th overall) Justin Gilbert has struggled badly. One of them will need to step up and perform if the Brows are to win.

The running game of the Falcons has not produced much. That is good news for the Browns having lost both ILB Karlos Dansby and OLB Jabaal Sheard last week. The Browns D line has been decimated by injuries as well. The D will have to have their best day of the year to win the game.

Will the Browns win? I doubt it. The Browns have struggled badly in dome games. In addition they seem to fold when facing a road game. The Falcons are very beatable. The question is are the Browns strong enough physically and mentally to beat them?

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

 

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  • Author:
  • Published: Sep 9th, 2014
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on News, Notes & Rumors for 9/9/14

News, Notes & Rumors for 9/9/14

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News:

The best news possible for Bills fans is that Sabers owner Terry Pegula has reached agreement to buy the team. Pegula will keep the team in Buffalo.

The NFL claims they never saw the elevator video of Ray Rice knocking his girlfriend out. I find that not believable. To think that the most powerful sports league in the country couldn’t get a video that TMZ had no problem finding is a lie of the worst kind. It is an attempt to cover up the most ludicrous miscarriage of justice in the history of the NFL. If Roger Goodell had any guts at all he would have changed the suspension when he realized how unfair it was. But he doesn’t and won’t any time soon.

A prosecutor said that the feelings of the victim are taken into consideration when deciding how to proceed with a domestic violence case. In this case it is clear that Janay Palmer wanted Rice to get the minimum punishment. That would explain the decision to place Rice in a diversionary program.

Flag-mania was not prevalent in week 1 of the season. It was good to see that the zebras finally figured out that the DB has as much right to the ball as the receiver. That is kind of a good thing. Hands to the face flags were called at a higher rate than last year however. That is a good thing as well.

Several teams suffered serious injuries. Texan OLB Jadeveon Clowney, the 1st pick overall this year, has a torn Mencius and will miss 4 to 6 weeks. The Chiefs lost OLB Derrick Thomas for the season with an Achilles injury. The Browns lost TE Jordan Cameron (shoulder) and RB Ben Tate (knee). The Bears lost 2 offensive linemen C Roberto Garza and G Matt Slauson. The Colts suspended DE Robert Mathis injured is Achilles working on his own and is lost for the season.

Notes:

Falcons 37 Saints 34 – This was a giant win for the birds. The key to the game was the Saint D let the team down under the attack of QB Matt Ryan. Ryan threw for 448 yards. The Saint O built a 13-0 lead but the D could not hold it. The Saint D also allowed a late drive giving the Falcons the tie. It was a turnover in OT that setup the winning FG. The loss by the Saints hurts their chances of getting the #1 seed in the NFC. That will be critical if they expect to go get to the Super Bowl. The Saints are not going to go to Seattle and win the NFC title.

­Dolphins 33 Patriots 20 – This was a huge loss for the Pats because it exposed the O line issues. QB Tom Brady was sacked 4 times and pressured all day by DE Cameron Wake and the D line of the Fish. Brady also fumbled twice. The Fish converted 59% of their 3rd down attempts while the Pats converted just 29%. The Pats need the top AFC seed if they hope to get to the Super Bowl. But until they fix the O line and find a way to stop the run on defense, that is not likely to happen.

49ers 28 Cowboys 17 – Dallas could not give the ball away fast enough. They turned the ball over on three of their first four possessions. The 49ers had 21 points with only 4 offensive plays. The game was never close after that. The 49er D looked good but most of that was due to the charity of the Boys. Things will be a lot harder when the 9ers get into their division games.

Eagles 34 Jags 17 – Eagles QB Nick Foles turned the ball over 4 times which allowed the Jags to build a 17-0 half time lead. But the second half was a different story. The Eagle D has to start the game ready to play if this team expects to go deep into the playoffs. The Eagles are still the class of a very ordinary NFC East.

Steelers 30 Browns 27 – For my thoughts about this game check out “The Secret behind the Browns 24 point comeback” right here on Fryingpansports.

Rumors:

IF the NFL and NFLPA finalize a new drug policy several players that are currently suspended could get some relief from it. Browns WR Josh Gordon was tested slightly over the current NFL limit for weed in the system but the new higher limit could apply retroactively to his case. Bronco WR Wes Welker could also get a pass on his 4 game suspension.

Several teams are in serious trouble getting to the playoffs even after just 1 game.

The Ravens have a must win Thursday against the Steelers. Pittsburgh is already up a game in the division and if the Ratbirds go to 0-2 with 2 division losses, it will be very difficult for them to recover. The Ratbird O has struggled all preseason to get the TD rather than a field goal.

The Redskins O is also pathetic. While the Skins D has played OK, it will be the O that prevents them from getting to the post season.

The Bears’ loss at home was a huge failure. The fact that they lost to the Bills makes the loss twice as costly. To make the playoffs, the Bears have to win home games and win the games on the road against the teams they are supposed to beat.

The Johnny Manziel package was just a rumor. He did not appear in the game.

The officiating this week was weak. While there was no Fail-Mary there were a lot of calls that were head-scratchers. One surprise was the lack of calls for the arm bar by either a defender or receiver. The zebras got the word from Park Avenue that the preseason games were bogged down by all the flags. But they may have gone too far in the other direction.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: Check out the live News, Notes and Rumors show on Monday, Thursday and Friday at 6 PM Eastern on or http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. On Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports, former NFL scout Kelron Sykes and I talk football with just a little Indians and Cavs thrown in. The archive is available on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Please join us.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/ and the live show Mondays at 6 PM Eastern time on .

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

 

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