Preview of week 16 games from NNR.

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NOTE: On NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discussed the news of the day, injuries from the previous week, and previewed all of this week’s games including a detailed analysis of the Browns game.

Injuries

BA cb Jimmy Smith Thigh

BF RB LeSean McCoy knee WR Robert Woods HIP

CN WR A.J. Green Back

HO qb T.J. Yates knee

JK OB Telvin Smith FINGER

MN RB Adrian Peterson

NE WR Danny Amendola KNEE

NJ CB Dee Milliner ANKLE DE Muhammad Wilkerson WRIST

OK WR Michael Crabtree Concussion

SD OK SD Rivers is carrying the team on his back. Run game & O line are hurt.

4-10 6-8 D showed up last week. It has looked like it has already moved to LA.

Coaching staff has to win the last 2 to keep their jobs. If not the team will leave without giving them the forwarding address.

OK Carr showed his fear of inside rush last week by throwing picks. Run game is inconsistent.

D is coming. Mack is a BEAST. He had 5 sacks in a single game & leads the league.

Del Rio has the team heading up (unlike some teams in Northern Ohio).

WA PH WA WA leads the NFC Least but needs this win to stay there.

7-7 6-8 The O& D are in middle of the league. That is not good but MUCH better than expected.

PH Note to HC Kelly: the PH fans threw snowballs at Santa. They don’t take bad football well.

Many think that Bradford is perfect for KellyBall. He is not. There will be a new QB next year. (Kaepernick?)

The D has suffered because O can’t stay on the field. It has not been as bad as most think.

SF DT SF SF is a train wreck. Wrong HC, wrong QB, wrong O system. D suffered from desertions.

4-9 5-9 HC Tomsula is in WAY over his head. The record shows it.

DT HC Caldwell & Company are dead men walking. New GM will want to name a new HC.

Stafford has been average. He will stay because the top 2 QBS in the draft will be gone.

PT BA PT PT needs to win both games to get to the playoffs. With BA & CL on the schedule that will not be a problem.

9-5 4-10 No team in the AFC wants to face the PT O. It is as dangerous as any in the league.

BA The thought of BA having a top 5 pick is scary. WR or pass rusher will be on the top of their wish list.

Next year everyone (except Dumervil) will be back & BA will be back on top of the AFC North.

BA may have to adjust the practice & game rotations to keep the team healthier.

DA BF DA Jones will have some hard decisions to make. DA is not a good team even with Romo.

4-10 6-8 The big question is can Jones find a quality HC to take the job if he is the GM? Probably not.

At the very least they need a better backup QB for often injured Romo.

BF Ryan is on a warm seat. The D has disintegrated. That was supposed to be the hallmark of the team.

The O has been much better than expected. Taylor has been good but the run game is lacking due in injuries.

CH TB CH Cutler is a disaster & HC Fox won’t put up with him next year. Fox needs Forte to have a better season.

5-9 6-8 The run D has to get better. It will when Fox gets more 3-4 players in the draft.

TB Winston is getting better but needs to work on his pass game. Threat of QB run helps the RBS & O line.

D needs more Tampa2 players. Lovie will get that done.

CR AT CR Newton will be the MVP but should not be. CR is 23rd in passing y.

14-0 7-7 D is top 10 in all important areas. But giving up 35 pts vs NG is a problem.

AT AT has fallen & can’t get up. O is a disaster except for the pass game. Need a WR & O line help.

D has been middle of the league except against the pass.

IN MI IN GM & staff are history. Luck was hurt because GM didn’t get O line help for him.

6-8 5-9 D is really bad. This team will go nowhere until O line & D are fixed.

MI The GM & staff are history. Tannehill may be too. MI has under performed badly for several years.

Suh is over paid. It will take time to get this team out of salary cap hell & competitive again.

NE NJ NE Brady will get NE to the AFC title game. Despite injuries he has been outstanding.

12-2 9-5 D didn’t step as far back as expected after rebuilding DB group.

NJ NJ is 5 wins better than last year but face a tough game.

O has been decent but need a new QB. D is solid but needs help in vs the pass.

HO TN HO Leading AFC South is not an honor & TN is dangerous with Mettenberger at QB.

7-7 3-11 Hoyer was good but the O line got him hurt. Neither Yates or Weeden should ever see the field.

D is 4th in yards & 2nd vs pass but 13th in point allowed. They struggle to keep teams out of the end zone.

TN Mariota is out. That is good for TN. GM screwed up in asking too much from PH to make a trade for the 2nd pick.

A new admin may start Mettenberger over Mariota. Both O & D need upgrading.

JK NO JK The O has been decent. Bortles is getting better but is still inconsistent. WRS are no name but good.

5-9 5-9 The D is pathetic. Look for additions here to get this team out of the 5 win area.

NO The only thing NO has is QB Brees (1 in pass yds). It traded away all his weapons & resigned bad RBS.

The D sucks bilge water. 32nd in ppg & 30th or worse in the other stats.

GB AZ GB Who would believe that Rodgers would be 26th in pass yards? O has let the team down.

10-4 12-2 D is solid & is 5th in ppg. The O will struggle against AZ.

AZ As long as Palmer is healthy AZ is a Super Bowl threat. If he is hurt all bets are off.

The D has been good but injury to Mathieu is a huge problem.

ST SE ST Foles is a backup at best. ST made a mistake in trading for him. O is 31st in ppg & 32nd in pass ypg.

6-8 9-5 The D has been good. Donald is as good as any DT. Loss of DE Quinn hurt the pass rush.

SE No team in the NFC wants to face SE in the playoffs. Wilson has been near perfect for the last 5 games.

D has finally come close to 2013 play level. O is 7th in ppg. D is 2nd in ppg.

NG MN NG Eli has been OK. O is 8th in scoring 6th in pass ypg. Run game is on a milk carton in a store near you.

6-8 9-5 D has gone down hill. No pass rush & bad pass coverage has haunted NG.

MN Bridgewater took over when Peterson was hurt. He was responsible for 5 TDS.

Peterson has to be healthy for MN to do well in the playoffs.

An untold story of MN has been the D. 8th in ppg & 7th vs the pass.

CN DV CN McCarron looked good vs SF but will be pressured hard vs DV.

11-3 10-4 CN will be 1 & done again with either Dalton or McCarron at QB.

DV This is another team that suffers from pressure. The O has let the D down. Neither QB is even decent. Peyton is done.

D is 4th in ppg (thanks to pick6’s by O) & 1st in yards & pass yards.

CL KC CL Manziel did well 2 weeks ago. Unfortunately he can’t play SF every week.

3-11 9-5 The D gave up over 400yds last week. This could be a repeat.

KC Smith is Mr. Checkdown. To beat him CL needs to cover tight early in the play & apply pressure.

The KC D is solid in the front 7. They play a lot of zone behind a 4 or 5 guy rush.

QB 11 SMITH, ALEX T/SF 10 Daniel, Chase U/NO 7 Murray, Aaron 14/5

The key to get Smith to throw picks is to pressure him particularly up the gut. He panics.

Due to a lack of pass rush it is critical that the CL DBS provide tight coverage until the pass rush can get home.

Based on what we have seen so far this year that is not likely to happen.

LWR 12 Wilson, Albert CF14 13 Thomas, De’Anthony 14/4 85 Hammond, Frankie CF13

RWR 19 Maclin, Jeremy U/Phi 81 AVANT, JASON SF14 17 Conley, Chris 15/3

TE 87 Kelce, Travis 13/3 84 Harris, Demetrius CF13 82 Parker, Brian W/SD

Maclin is the stud receiver. CL must double him and go man on the other receivers. CL can’t afford to zone because the DBS get lost & have no idea when to close on a receiver.

Kelce is big & physical. He is a real threat in the red zone. I doubt that any CL LB can cover him.

RB 35 West, Charcandrick CF14 32 Ware, Spencer SF14 34 Davis, Knile 13/3

FB 42 Sherman, Anthony T/Arz

West has had at least 60 yds on each of his starts. That means he should get 150 against CL.

Ware is a power back. He is strong & hard to tackle. Davis is in the dog house due to fumbles.

LT 72 Fisher, Eric 13/1 79 Stephenson, Donald 12/3 75 Reid, Jah SF15

LG 73 Fulton, Zach 14/6 60 Pughsley, Jarrod SF14

C 61 Morse, Mitch 15/2

RG 76 Duvernay-Tardif, Laurent 14/6 73 Fulton, Zach 14/6

RT 71 Allen, Jeff 12/2 75 Reid, Jah SF15

The O line is very average despite a lot of high picks used to draft them.

KC uses a zone run blocking scheme & the team is much better blocking the run than the pass.

The O line struggles on pass blocking.

LDE 70 DEVITO, MIKE U/NYJ 99 Nunez-Roches, Rakeem 15/6 93 King, David W/Sea

NT 96 Howard, Jaye W/Sea 92 Poe, Dontari 12/1

RDE 97 Bailey, Allen 11/3 98 Williams, Nicholas P/Pit

LOLB 55 Ford, Dee 14/1 51 Zombo, Frank SF13 54 Moses, Dezman W/GB 50 Houston, Justin 11/3

LILB 56 JOHNSON, DERRICK 05/1 57 Alexander, DJ 15/5

RILB 90 Mauga, Josh SF14 53 Wilson, Ramik 15/4

ROLB 91 HALI, TAMBA 06/1

The front 7 is the best part of the D.

KC rushes 4 or 5 most of the time. Ford replaced Houston who is hurt.

The D has scored 7 TDS this year.

LCB 22 Peters, Marcus 15/1 31 Cooper, Marcus W/SF

SS 38 Parker, Ron W/Sea 27 Branch, Tyvon CC/Oak

FS 29 Berry, Eric 10/1 49 Sorensen, Daniel CF14 39 ABDULLAH, HUSAIN SF13

RCB 21 Smith, Sean U/Mia 30 Fleming, Jamell P/Bal 20 Nelson, Steven 15/3

Smith & Berry are the best guys in this unit. Peters is learning 7 has speed. Parker is OK.

Parker will sneak up to put an 8th guy in the box fairly often but only if CL can hurt them early with the run.

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 https://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 https://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 https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits .

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

Week 13 Preview

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SF CH-7 SF Gabbert has not been good but injuries to the run game has not helped.

3-8 5-6 D played well last week but has not been at all consistent.

SF has to win a game like this against a struggling team.

CH CH has won 3 of 4 recent games including a big win over GB. Cutler has been better

Cutler has been better & the run game has emerged.

But the real reason is an improved D that has finally mastered the Fox D system.

JK TN-2 JK Bortles is getting better. He had an outstanding game vs TN 2 weeks ago.

4-7 2-9 The D is 29th in ppg. But JK has won 2 of the last 3 games.

TN Mariota has struggled badly. O is 30th in scoring & 26th in pass yards.

The D has gotten better despite a lack of talent. That has a lot to do with the mind of Dick LeBeau.

Because of a loss to CL, TN holds the 1st overall pick as of now.

HO BF-3 HO Hoyer is playing solid FB with passer rating of 94.4 (15TDS 5x)

6-5 5-6 The D has been outstanding in the 4 game win streak. The key has been the D backfield’s multiple coverages.

DC Romeo Crenell has made adjustments to the scheme that have helped the D.

D has given up 38 pts in the last 18 quarters.

BF Taylor has been good. Despite injuries to the RBS, BF is 5th in rushing.

The D has been solid vs the run (14th) but has given up a ton of pass yards (22nd)

It will take Ryan a draft or 2 to get the D backfield up to the front 7.

BA MI-4.5 BA Flacco has had an off year for him but BA is still 10th in pass yards.

4-7 4-7 The pass rush has suffered from the loss of Suggs & issues in the D Backfield (24th v pass)

BA has 20 on IR. They will be much better next year.

MI Tannehill has been a disappointment so far. MI is 1-4 in the last 5 games & is 27th in scoring at 20.5 ppg.

The big additions on the D line have not resulted in better D. MI is 32nd v run & 27th in ppg.

There will be a total house cleaning at the end of the season.

CR-7 NO CR Newton has been much better in the recent games. But the run game (4th) has been the key to the O.

11-0 4-7 Newton is 29th in pass yards at 209.8.

The D has been outstanding. It is 3rd in ppg (18.6).

NO Despite the O fire sale the pass game has been solid (3rd 304ypg).

The run game has been a disappointment at 96ypg.

Firing DC Ryan has not helped. D is 32nd in ppg.

SE MN pk SE Wilson has been completing 76% in the last 2 games. The difference is the O line is getting better.

6-5 8-3 Experts have been down on Wilson but SE O is 8th in ppg.

TE Willson takes over for Graham. He is big & athletic.

The D backfield has not been up to previous years.

MN Bridgewater is continuing to grow as a QB. MN is 31st in passing due to having Peterson at RB.

Bridgewater is making critical throws. When D has shut down AP, Bridgewater comes through.

The D has been a huge story. It is 2nd in ppg but need to stop the run better against SE.

AZ-5.5 ST AZ Palmer continues to play outstanding FB. O is 1st in ppg (32.3) & yds (410).

9-2 4-7 Run game has suffered from injuries but still ranks 12th.

D has been solid but O has carried the team. Pass D has stood up to a lot of throws from teams behind in the game.

ST The O is the problem. 4 losses it has scored 51 pts. O is 31st in scoring at just 16.9 ppg.

The Keenum experiment is over. Foles is back but neither is a starting quality QB.

Gurley was outstanding early but has been stopped in recent games.

D has been solid but TOS have put it in bad field position.

AT TB-2 AT Ryan is late making decisions & trying to do too much. He has multiple picks in 5 games.

6-5 5-6 I wonder if he is hurt. Problems on the O line & injuries to the run game have added to the issue.

Since wk 6 AT has turned the ball over on 24% of their possessions. Scoring 16 ppg since wk 6.

RB Freeman should be back but will he be 100%? W White has been hurt. AT needs a 2nd weapon.

D is playing better but can not overcome bad field position due to TOS. 8Th v pass 21st v run

TB Winston has been growing at QB but still makes bad decisions & throws picks.

Martin has been inconsistent in recent weeks gaining 235y vs PH but only 63 vs DA.

The D has struggled but Lovie has yet to get Tampa 2 guys type players. 25Th in ppg.

NJ-2 NG NJ Fitzpatrick has played OK & HC Boles has done a great job with the team.

6-5 5-6 NJ is 7th in ppg but part of that has been due to D scores. 14Th in ypg

D has been good but not dominant. 9Th in ppg 3rd ypg 1st rypg

NG O line lost G Schwartz. Not good vs one of the best D lines in the league.

Eli throws picks more often if he gets pressured. But O is 5th in ppg.

D has been a huge problem. 22Nd in ppg 32nd in ypg.

DV-4 SD DV Osweiler will start again. He may start the rest of the season because Manning has 9 TDS & 17 picks.

9-2 3-8 He runs the O that Kubiac wants. Manning does not. Run game has been decent but inconsistent. 17Th

D has been solid 4th in ppg 1st in ypg & pass ypg.

Ware is back and could really help the pass rush. That will make life for Rivers hard.

SD Rivers has carried the team but struggles to get in the endzone. 6Th in ypg & 2nd in pass ypg but 19th in ppg.

Run game has not come around. Is Yeldon another Alabama RB bust?

D has already moved to LA. 30Th in ppg

KC-3 OK KC Smith has 7TDS & 0 picks in the 5 game win streak. O has not turned the ball over in those games.

6-5 5-6 D has come on as well. Pass rush has gotten better but could be without OLB Houston the rest of the year.

KC has the easiest remaining schedule & may get into the wild card.

OK Del Rio has the team coming on but KC will be a tough assignment.

Carr has been decent but he still hates pressure up the middle. KC’s pressure comes off the edge.

O is 11th in ppg & 8th in pass ypg.

D is better vs run than pass. Del Rio will get more quality D players soon.

PH NE-9.5 PH Sam Bradford is back. But will he continue to give the ball away like he has this season?

4-7 10-1 The other issue is can PH run the ball against the NE D?

D has given up 45 pts in each of the last 2 games. They just don’t get enough rest.

They have also been hurt by turnovers by the O. Field position is a sore subject in the D meeting room.

As Chip Kelly loses more games the heat on him is bound to increase. This is the city that booed Santa.

NE Brady & Belichick are not happy about the loss at DV. That spells trouble for the PH D.

Without all the NE weapons Brady will depend on no names to catch his passes.

The D has been outstanding. The loss last week was not the fault of the D.

IN PT-7 IN Hasselbeck is likely to start for IN this week. He is 4-0 and playing much better than Luck.

6-5 6-5 He will have to do it all because there is no run game.

PT Roethlisberger is likely to play this week. That is critical if PT is to get into the playoffs.

PT is 8th in rushing. IN has not been able to stop the run at all. They are giving up 115 ypg rushing.

PT D is switching CB positions. That is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

PT D is 30th in passing yards allowed.

DA WA-4 DA Cassel is they guy now that Romo is out for the year. Jones has no one to blame but himself for losing this year.

3-8 5-6 Run game is 11th in the league which was a surprise but O is 29th in ppg.

D has been better than expected 18th in ppg 7th in pass ypg.

WA 21st in PPG, 20th in ppg allowed 5-6 and they lead the division? Welcome to the NFC Least.

Cousins has been decent which is a great surprise. O 21st in ppg 19th in pass ypg.

Run game is inconsistent. Morris has 482y but just 3.6 ypatt

D can’t stop the run but is 20th in ppg.

CN-9.5 CL CN After 2 losses CN seems to have gotten its act together again at ST.

9-2 2-9 The HO loss was on the O but the D gave up 34 pts to AZ.

CL CL can’t run at all. Is it the O line or the RBS? YES.

D has been abysmal & ST have been worse.

QB 14 Dalton, Andy 11/2 5 McCarron, AJ 14/5

Dalton is the opposite of a vampire. He turns to dust in the dark not the sun. 1pm He will be fine.

He has thrown 23TDS & just 6 Picks & has a pass rating of 105.3

He is allergic to a pass rush. That too should be no problem because CL doesn’t own one.

LWR 18 Green, AJ 11/1 19 Tate, Brandon W/NE 15 Alford, Mario 15/7

RWR 12 Sanu, Mohamed 12/3 82 Jones, Marvin 12/5

TE 85 Eifert, Tyler 13/1 81 Kroft, Tyler 15/3

TE/H-B 89 Hewitt, Ryan CF14 87 Uzomah, CJ 15/5

Green is as good as any WR in the league. It might be an idea to double him since Haden is out.

Sanu has speed but less reliable hands than AJ. Jones is better than Sanu in my opinion.

Eifert has become a force in the red zone & on 3rd down. Hewitt is a blocker with OK hands.

Given the struggles of CL DBS, this could be a blowout early.

RB 32 Hill, Jeremy 14/2 25 Bernard, Giovani 13/2 30 Peerman, Cedric W/Det 33 Burkhead, Rex 13/6

Hill is a power runner but can fumble. Bernard is a pass catcher & reliable runner.

LT 77 WHITWORTH, ANDREW 06/2 70 Ogbuehi, Cedric 15/1

LG 65 Boling, Clint 11/4 74 Fisher, Jake 15/2

C 61 Bodine, Russell 14/4 60 Johnson, TJ 13/7

RG 68 Zeitler, Kevin 12/1 73 WINSTON, ERIC SF14

RT 71 Smith, Andre 09/1 73 WINSTON, ERIC SF14

Whitworth has been outstanding. Smith has been in & out of the lineup but Winston is a solid RT.

C Bodine & RG Zeitler are average at best but LG Boling is very good.

CL got no pressure on Dalton in the last game. The D rolled over & died in the 4th Q giving up 14 pts.

LDE 96 Dunlap, Carlos 10/2 99 Hunt, Margus 13/2

NT 94 PEKO, DOMATA 06/4 92 SIMS, PAT U/Oak

RDT 97 Atkins, Geno 10/4 98 Thompson, Brandon 12/3 91 Hardison, Marcus 15/4

RDE 90 Johnson, Michael CC/TB 95 GILBERRY, WALLACE SF12 93 Clarke, Will 14/3

Atkins is the best DT in the league. He makes everyone else on the D better.

CL O line will struggle unless they double Atkins on every play.

Johnson is back. He & Dunlap are the pass rushers.

SLB 50 HAWK, AJ CC/GB 59 Lamur, Emmanuel CF12 49 Carter, Chris SF14

MLB 58 Maualuga, Rey 09/2 57 Rey, Vincent CF10

WLB 55 Burfict, Vontaze CF12 57 Rey, Vincent CF10 47 Dawson, Paul 15/3

Burfict has been hurt a lot this year. He is the blitzer of the group. When he is healthy he comes 30% of the time.

Hawk has been better in CN than in GB. He is in a D that better fits his talent. He is primarily a run stuffer.

Maualuga struggles to cover TES or RBS in coverage. He too is solid vs the run.

LCB 27 Kirkpatrick, Dre 12/1 26 Shaw, Josh 15/4

SS 43 Iloka, George 12/5 36 Williams, Shawn 13/3

FS 20 NELSON, REGGIE T/Jax 40 Smith, Derron 15/6

RCB 29 HALL, LEON 07/1 37 Lewis-Harris, Chris CF12 24 JONES, ADAM SF10

Hall & Jones are the best CBS but Jones has been hurt this year.

Kirkpatrick is just OK but both S are solid.

CL Who plays QB? Davis did very well & Bengals ate Manziel as an entree.

CL O 28th ppg 26th T yards 11th Pass y 31st Rush Y

D 31st PPG 30th T Yards 25th Pass y 31st Rush Y

CN O 4th PPG 7th Yards 12th Pass y 9th rush y

D 1st PPG 15th Yards 17th Pass y 13th Rush Y

  • Author:
  • Published: Nov 1st, 2015
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on My thoughts on Week 8 games

My thoughts on Week 8 games

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NOTE: On NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discussed the news of the day, injuries from week 8, and previewed all week 8 games including the Browns/Cards.

Lions & Chiefs at London

DT Stafford has been a disaster. O line & run game are worse. Can they score?

D has been stressed by TOS on O.

KC Smith has been bad and Reid in on the hot seat. The DT D should help both.

The pass rush as disappeared D backfield is better w Berry but without a rush it suffers.

Bucs at Falcons

TB Winston has been up & down as has the run game.

Lovie has to get more Tampa 2 players. He has just a few now.

AT AT O has disappeared. It will be back against TB. Ryan has to get WR White back.

D has been much better this year. It will give Winston fits.

Chargers at Ravens

SD Rivers has a pass rating of 99.2. 15TDS 7X. O line & lack of run game have been big issues.

TE Gates is back but not yet FB condition. He must help a weak rec corps.

D has struggled. Injuries are hurting the D.

BA Flacco has been bad & WRS have not helped.

Front 7 is good. Back 4 not so much. Rivers will be a problem.

Vikings at Bears

MN Birdgewater & Peterson have to deal with a bad O line but are solid. Wallace has to catch the ball.

D is 3rd in scoring but needs to take the ball away more. Cutler should help that.

CH Cutler is out at the end of the year. He has not be “in” for much of the season.

Fox needs a D but doesn’t have much of one now.

Titans at Texans

TN Mariota may start but no running game hurt and the O line is over paid and under performing.

D has struggled. DBS are weak but it is getting better.

HO Mallett is gone so no more coin flips but so is Foster. Hoyer needs some help.

D has under achieved. Watt triple teamed & no other pass rusher getting home.

Bengals at Steelers

CN Dalton has been great. PT has little pass rush so he should be fine.

D needs to kept the PT Run game under control. If so the game will be in Ben’s hands.

PT If he plays Big Ben will not be as mobile. W/o LT Beacham it will be hard.

DBS will be challenged by CN O. Can they cover TE Eifert?

This is a must win for PT if they want to get back in the playoff race.

49ers at Rams

SF Can Kaepernick survive the ST pass rush? He needs the run game to slow down the rush.

Pass rush has been inconsistent. Needs it to stop ST pass game.

TE Davis felt Kaep NEEDS to be more inclusive if he wants to be an effective leader.

ST Foles needs to improve. Run game is solid. Gurley is outstanding.

D should shred the SF O line. But can it stop the running game?

Jets at Raiders

NJ O has struggled at QB. Have to get run game going.

D is solid & deep. If they had a QB it would be a great team.

OK Carr is OK but needs protection. Murray is coming around as a RB.

D has some stars like Mack but need more. Best S Woodson is 96.

Seahawks at Cowboys

SE Worst O line in the league. Wilson deserves better. Run game getting better.

D has to stop giving up leads. In 4 losses Wilson & O has gotten a lead only to have D give it up.

DA Cassel proved 1 thing-He is no better than Weeden. Running game is spotty.

Collins R is starting at RG.

D has been a little better but in 4 straight losses has been on the field too much.

Packers at Broncos

GB Rodgers is the best QB in the league. Has lots of weapons & good RB in Lacy. O line is the only ?

D is 1st in scoring D. That is outstanding considering most teams are way behind against GB O.

DV Peyton is dead man walking. Is still able to do just enough to win. Can’t score enough to beat GB.

DV D is really good but gets burned by a precise passing game. Can be run against as well.

Cardinals at Browns

AZ Palmer is playing as well an anyone. Run game is OK when healthy. AZ is 4th on O.

D has been very good. They are 4th also on D.

CL Not sure if McCown can start. I have no desire to see Manziel and would prefer Davis.

Both Haden & Gipson should be back. That will help. But D has to stop the run.

Colts at Panthers

IN Luck has not been the same. He is not looking off safeties and looks nervous. I would be nervous too playing behind that O line.

Colt D has been BAD. Can’t stop the run or the pass. They are lucky to be in the AFC South.

CR Newton is doing it all without quality receivers or much of a running game. How much longer can he get it done alone?

CR D has been solid now that Kuechly is back. He and Davis are as good as it gets.

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 https://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 https://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 https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits .

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

  • Author:
  • Published: Oct 10th, 2015
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Thoughts about NFL weeks 1-4

Thoughts about NFL weeks 1-4

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NOTE: On NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discussed the news of the day, injuries from week 4, and previews of all NFL week 5 games including the Browns/Ravens.

AFC East

Patriots – They look like the best team in the AFC. Only the Court can stop Tom Brady.

Bills – Ty Taylor has been really good and the D is solid.

Jets – The defense is great but no QB means no playoffs.

Dolphins – New head coach but the same players. That is a bad mix.

AFC North

Bengals – Andy Dalton looks great now but he hasn’t played a night or playoff game yet.

Steelers – Mike Vick is no Roethlisberger but the defense isn’t the steel curtain either.

Browns – The offense was questionable but the defense has been terrible.

Ravens – The D is not what it used to be but neither is the O.

AFC South

Colts – Luck is lucky he plays in the AFC Least. Colts get to the playoffs without a D.

Titans – They have 2 NFL starting quality QBS. Lots of teams have none.

Texans – HC Bill O’Brien is not the first to flip a coin to decide who starts at QB. The Browns did it years ago.

Jaguars – They are getting better but need more play makers.

AFC West

Broncos – Team goes as far as Peyton Manning can throw them. That won’t be to the Super Bowl.

Raiders – HC Jack Del Rio has the team playing tough and ready to steal Manning’s lunch money.

Chargers – Phillip Rivers won’t have to move but has to carry the team on his back.

Chiefs – Both O and D are very over rated. Andy Reed is not getting it done.

NFC East

Cowboys – Jerry Jones is learning Brandon Weeden is NOT a good insurance guy.

Giants – Think where they would be if HC Tom Coughlin could figure out how to get off to a fast start.

Redskins – RG3 is playing CB on the scout team. Enough said.

Eagles – 29th in O plays per game? “Chip, the U of Texas is calling. You really need to talk to them.”

NFC North

Packers – In Aaron we trust. He needs to score because the D leaks badly.

Vikings – Does Bridgewater + Peterson = playoffs? Maybe a wild card.

Bears – Only the Lions keep them out of the basement in this division.

Lions – They need coaches and a GM but who wants to live in Detroit?

NFC South

Falcons – HC Dan Quinn has this team playing great. The D is way under rated.

Panthers – I’m still not sold on Cam Newton but love the rebuilt D.

Buccaneers – Jameis Winston completes a lot of throws but some are to the opponent.

Saints – The bag heads are back wondering how DC Ryan keeps his job.

NFC West

Cardinals – They win as long as Carson Palmer is healthy. The O line needs to work harder to insure that.

Seahawks – They have a great QB and RB but the O line is pathetic and may keep them out of the playoffs.

Rams – Nick Foles is not the answer but Bradford wasn’t either. The D is solid.

49ers – Jed York let the coach go when he should have fired the GM. Now Michigan has a better D than the 9ers.

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 https://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 https://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 https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits .

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

  • Author:
  • Published: Nov 27th, 2013
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on News, Notes & Rumors for week 12

News, Notes & Rumors for week 12

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nfl

NOTE:  Due to the Thanksgiving holiday the NFL Preview show will be tonight at 6 PM EST this week only.  Please join Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports, Tony Williams Giants beat writer for Metro New York and me for the show.

 

NOTE:  Check out the live News, Notes and Rumors show on Monday and Friday at 6 PM Eastern on The Bill Smith Radio Show or the archive of the shows on https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.  On Monday Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discuss the Browns game and the results of the weekend.  On Friday Tony Williams Giants beat writer for Metro New York joins Samantha and me to preview the upcoming games.

 

News:

The NFL has to get a handle on the horrible officiating.  It is totally inconsistent.  A perfect example is two calls on hits to the QB.  Bears’ QB Josh McCown was clearly not hit in the head and was tackled chest to chest while he was holding the ball.  The flag was thrown for roughing the passer.  Browns’ QB Jason Campbell was grabbed around the neck and thrown down head first and there was no flag.  The officials seem to think the fans come to see them.  That is not the case.  The only way to solve this problem is to have instant replay on the targeting penalty.

 

KC was missing their two best pass rushers against the Chargers.  An MRI showed Tamba Hali has a sprain of the lower right ankle.  He could be probable for the next game.  LB Justin Houston could not have an MRI on his elbow because of swelling Monday.  His MRI today indicated it was dislocated.

 

Bucs CB Darrelle Revis suffered a groin injury and may 4 to 6 weeks.

 

Offensive Coordinators all over the league are wasting time outs like they are water.  Then when the game comes down to the half or the end they don’t have them to use.  Being an OC requires you to think 3 or 4 plays ahead.  The Jets for example challenged a pass play and won the challenge.  But then they had to take a TO because they could not get the call in on time.  The challenge took more than 3 minutes.  Why they did not have a play both with the challenge being successful and without it is beyond me.

 

Notes:

Cowboys 24 Giants 21 – On the first two trips inside the Boys 10 yard line the Giants were too conservative and got field goals rather than TDs.  That was the difference in the game.  Failures inside the red zone have plagued the Giants all year.  The Boys’ first TD was scored by their defense on a fumble recovery and return.  The Giants were playing catch up all afternoon but did tie the game with a two point conversion with 4:45 left in the 4th.  But the Cowboys drove down the field and kicked a 35 yard field goal that ended the game.  Maybe the Giants problem is the ugly mustache of Eli Manning.

 

Chargers 41 Chiefs 38 – Bad last drive defense cost the Chiefs the win.  The lead changed hands 5 times in a mostly even game.  The Chiefs scored to take the lead to 38-34 with 1:22 left.  The Chargers got the ball on their 22 and in just 58 seconds drove for the winning TD.  The Chief D did not get their usual level of pressure on Charger QB Phillip Rivers.  He threw for 392 yards and 3 TDs without a pick and was sacked only once.  Rivers used big pass plays to move the ball.  During the game the Chiefs lost both their top pass rushers to injury.

 

Jaguars 13 Texans 6 – The Jaguars lost the lead for the 1st overall pick in the 2014 draft with the win.  Jags QB Chad Henne was not spectacular but was able to lead the team to a 10-0 lead with 7:57 left in the 1st half.  Ten points were enough given the poor play of the Texan O.  The Texans QB Case Keenum threw 34 times but got only 169 yards with no TDs and one pick.  They scored only 2 field goals.  Both teams will be drafting a QB early in the draft.

 

Patriots 34 Broncos 31 – The game was a turnover fest.  The Pats were in a giving mood in the first half and the Broncos returned the favor in the second.  The Broncos had only one drive in the first half.  The other points came directly off Pats turnovers.  In the second half the Pats stopped turning the ball over.  The game winning FG came on a Bronco turnover.  The Broncos were forced to play zone in the second half due to the loss of CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.  QB Tom Brady picked it apart.  The thing that jumped out at me was the throws by QB Payton Manning.  They fluttered both with the wind and against it even on the short throws.  Payton Manning has not done well in cold weather (1-5 in games below 32 degrees).  That could be a major red flag for the Broncos chances of going deep into the playoffs.  It looks like the ankle may be part of the problem but this may be the beginning of the end for one of the all time great QBs in the history of the league.

 

Cardinals 40 Colts 11 – The Cards moved the ball and the Colts took advantage of penalties.  There were not enough of the latter to save the Colts.  The Cards ran and passed through the Colt defense with ease.  Colt QB Andrew Luck had one of his worst games of his career against the solid Cards D.  Luck was under 50 % completion rate for just 159 yards and threw a pick 6.  Drops by his receivers did not help either.  The score went from 7-3 to 34-3 before the Colts finally scored a TD.  Cards QB Carson Palmer threw for 314 yards and 2 TDs without an interception.

 

Ravens 19 Jets 3 – The Raven D made rookie QB Geno Smith long for his days in college.  Smith completed 11 of 22 throws but two of those were to the other color jersey.  The Raven O is still in low gear.  They struggled to get the ball into the end zone and kicked 5 field goals four of which were inside the red zone.  While the Raven D may be back the offense is far from playoff ready.

 

Steelers 27 Browns 11 – The Browns were in a position to challenge for a wild card spot prior to the ugly loss to the Steelers.  For a complete analysis of the game, check out my Browns-Steelers Live Game Notes here on https://fryingpansports.com/.

 

 

Rumors:

Rumors are swirling around the Redskins.  Mike Silver of the NFL Network reported that QB Robert Griffin III had asked the coaching staff not to show his bad plays in the team meetings because that would hurt the other players’ faith in him.  It supposedly was the policy at Baylor.  Silver said “This is real. RGIII has expressed to teammates his dissatisfaction with Mike Shanahan and this could be coming to a head. Inside the building, when you talk to people familiar with this situation they perceive RGIII as kind of insecure, specifically about Kirk Cousins, which may be one reason he was so eager to rush back.”  Both RG3 and Coach Shanahan denied the report.

It was also rumored that Shanahan never wanted RG3.  According to that report he wanted QB Ryan Tannehill (8th pick overall) who was available with the Redskins’ first round pick (6th overall) in 2012.  That would have avoided the trade with the Rams for several first and second round picks.

If someone is going to go, the owner will choose the coach because he can get another staff without costing him any draft choices.

 

Beyond the rumors, the performance of RG3 has been way below what was expected.  Part of the issue is the injury that was less than a year ago.  But RG3 to be effective has to run the ball.  That opens up the inside lanes for the running back and keeps the play action pass effective.  He either can’t or won’t run.  He is fragile and needs to protect himself.  But until he improves his pocket passing accuracy like Seahawk QB Russell Wilson has, he will not be as effective as he was in his rookie season.

 

There are rumors that the Colts flaws are showing.  QB Andrew Luck has begun to turn the ball over and the loss of WR Reggie Wayne has hurt the offense.  The Colts biggest issue has been an inconsistent defense that really struggles on the road.  The Colts have lost 2 of their last 3 games in bad blowouts.

 

That’s what I think.  Tell me what you think.

 

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 https://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 https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/ and the live show Mondays at 6 PM Eastern time on The Bill Smith Radio Show.  

He also edits .  

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

 

  • Author:
  • Published: Nov 19th, 2013
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on News, Notes & Rumors for week 11

News, Notes & Rumors for week 11

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nfl

NOTE:  This week the NFL Preview show will be on Thursday at 6 PM and next week it will be on Wednesday due to the Thanksgiving weekend.

 

Check out the live News, Notes and Rumors show on Monday and Friday at 6 PM Eastern on The Bill Smith Radio Show or the archive of the shows on https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.  On Monday Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discuss the Browns game and the results of the weekend.  On Friday Tony Williams Giants beat writer for Metro New York joins Samantha and me to preview the upcoming games.

 

 

 

News:

The best news of the week was that Texans coach Gary Kubiak was back with the team.  He is a good guy and we hope he continues to have good health.

 

Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe was is facing possible drug charges.  According to league rules he is exempt from suspension until the legal case is adjudicated.

 

Steelers WR Emmanuel Sanders was lost for the game and perhaps longer with a foot injury.

 

The end of the Patriots Panther game was another example of bad and gutless officiating in the NFL.  After seeing TE Rob Gronkowski tackled in the endzone the official closest to the foul threw a flag.  The officials waived it off and ran off the field like a bunch of girls that had shoplifted a sweater.

 

Having been an official I have a problem with that.  The call should have been either pass interference if the ball was catchable (it was only 4 yards from one of the biggest and most athletic receivers in the league) or defensive holding.  The prior would put the ball on the 1 with an untimed down.  The alternative would have moved the ball 5 yards closer and provided an untimed down.  At the very least the officials should have had the guts to explain to the team and the viewers at home why the flag was picked up.  That kind of action makes the league look like the games are fixed.  That is the one think that can destroy the legitimacy of the league.

 

ESPN reports that the Dolphins have asked for a delay in the hearing on Richie Incognito’s non-football injury grievance.

 

Ravens General Manager and Executive Vice President Ozzie Newsome was taken to the hospital during this week’s game at Chicago.  NFL.COM has reported that he is feeling fine and has returned to Baltimore.  We wish the Hall of Famer Newsome the best.

 

 

Notes:

Steelers 37 Lions 27 – The Steelers wore the Bumble Bee throw back uniforms which should be called throw up uniforms.  The Bees started hot throwing a couple of short passes which Antonio Brown took to the endzone to build a 14-0 lead in the first quarter with the no huddle O.  That was something that they had not shown before.  The Lions scored 27 second quarter points but did not score again.  The key play was a fake field goal attempt by the Lions in the pouring rain that failed.  In the 2nd half the Steelers increased the heat on Stafford.  Steeler QB Ben Roethlisberger ended up 29-43 for 367 yards and 4 TDs without a pick.  The Lions defensive line could not get much pressure on Roethlisberger only sacking him once.  Lions QB Matt Stafford did not have a good day in the winds of Hines Field.  He was only 19 of 46 with 2 TDs and 1 interception.  The Lions also lost 2 fumbles.  WR Calvin Johnson caught 6 for 179 yards and 2 TDs but did not have a catch in the 2nd half.

 

Raiders 28 Texans 23 – The Texans are done.  Neither their O or D played well.  They turned the ball over twice and the offense was so bad they benched Case Keenum (13-24 170-1-1) and brought Pick Six Matt Schaub (12-25-155-0-0) back in.  The Texans got an 87 yard TD on a punt return by Keshawn Martin but were -2 in turnovers.  Undrafted QB Matt McGloin threw three TDs in his first NFL start.  He was 18 for 32 for 197 with the 3 TDs and no interceptions.  The Texans took a 17-14 lead into the 3rd quarter but McGloin threw two of his TDs in the quarter.  The best the Texans could generate under Schaub was two field goals.  The Texans were able to convert only 2 of 16 3rd down attempts.

 

Bears 23 Ravens 20 OT – The Ravens had a 10-0 lead when the field was cleared for almost 2 hours due to heavy rain and lightening.  When the game resumed the Bears tied the game on a field goal and a pick 6 by David Bass.  The poor field reduced the pass rush of the Ravens.  However, it did not seem to slow down the Bears pass rush.  Baltimore QB Joe Flacco threw two picks and 1 TD.  He now has thrown 13 of each this season.  That combined with the hip injury to Ray Rice are the primary reasons the O has struggled in 2013.  Bears 2nd team QB Josh McCown did not.  The Ravens got the running game going with RB Rice gaining 131 yards and a 5.2 yard average.  He is looking healthier.  The Ravens got a field goal to tie the game with 3 seconds left but the Bears kicked a field goal in overtime to win.

 

Eagles 24 Redskins 16 – Eagles QB Nick Foles took advantage of a Redskin defense that is one of the worst in the league.  He threw for nearly 300 yards and led the Eagles to two TDs and ran a third in himself.  Under Foles the Eagle O does not come close to running the 80+ plays per game.  But unlike QB Mike Vick, Foles does not turn the ball over.  He has thrown 16 TDs and has yet to throw a pick.  While leading rusher LeSean McCoy was held to 77 yards he did score 2 TDs.

Redskin QB Robert Griffin threw an interception and lost a fumble under a lot of pressure from the Eagle D line.  RG3 never looked comfortable and the game was over before the Skins O got started.  Not only is he playing behind a patched up line he is without any quality receivers.

 

Bills 37 Jets 14 – Bills rookie QB E.J. Manuel outdueled Jets rookie Geno Smith to lead the Bills to a win at home.  Manuel was 20 of 28 for 242 yards and 2 TDs without an interception.  Smith was 8 for 23 for 103 yards and three interceptions without a TD.  He also fumbled twice but recovered one.  Smith has turned the ball over 20 times this season including 16 interceptions.  Smith was replaced by Matt Simms who did throw a TD pass.  The Bills jumped out to a 20-0 lead in the second quarter mostly from Smith’s turnovers and the Jets never recovered.  The Bills defense got 4 sacks and harassed Jet QBs all day.

 

Saints 23 49ers 20 – The Saints got a little home town officiating.  Late in the game the 49ers sacked Brees taking them out of field goal range.  But there was a flag for a hit to the head which wiped out the loss and added 15 yards.  Replay showed the hit was on the neck.  The kick was good which tied the game.  As time expired another field goal got the Saints the win.

The Saints D shut down the 49er running game.  49er QB Colin Kaepernick threw two TDs and the defense forced 3 turnovers.  He was chased all over the field and got sacked 3 times.  The 49er receivers did not get open.  The loss puts the team in danger of missing the playoffs.  They are now tied with the Cardinals at 6-4.  The passing game of the Saints prevailed.  QB Drew Brees threw for 300 yards and led the Saints to 2 touchdowns and three field goals for the win.  The Saints are a much better team at home than on the road.  At 8-2 the Saints need to keep winning to have any chance of catching the Seahawks.

 

Broncos 27 Chiefs 17 – The flaws of the Chiefs game were exposed against the Broncos.  The Chiefs do not have the offense to score enough to overcome a quality team.  They had build a 9-0 record against backup QBs on below average teams.  The Chief offense had not scored a TD in 6 quarters coming into the game.  That is not a formula for a championship.  The Broncos are a legitimate threat to go all the way to the Super Bowl ONLY if QB Payton Manning can stay healthy.

 

Bengals 41 Browns 20 – Four turnovers and two blocked punts did in the Browns chance to win.  When your fans give the team a standing ovation for getting a punt off, thing on special teams are bad. For the details of the game check out my Browns Bengals Live Game Notes on https://fryingpansports.com/.

 

 

Rumors:

The Steelers will face major cap space issues in part due to the big contract they gave Roethlisberger.  They are also getting old and brittle particularly on defense.  Look for the team to let some big name (and big salary) older players go including SS Troy Polamalu.  A trade of Roethlisberger is not likely because the cap hit would be over 12 million dollars.

 

Watching Vikings RB Adrian Peterson over the last few weeks I have to believe he is not healthy.  He does not have the burst or the jump step he has shown over his career.

 

With 6 weeks to go in the season it is time to look at those coaches on the hot seat.  The two that jump out are Jacksonville and Tampa Bay.  Both are very much in need of more wins to insure their return next season.

The Vikings, Falcons, Texans and Redskins share the Under-Achiever of the year award and the coaching staffs may be gone next season.  Redskins coach Mike Shanahan has an excuse due to the bounty that was paid for QB Griffin and the salary cap hit imposed by the NFL.  That excuse may not apply to GM Bruce Allen.  Both the trade and the errors that resulted in the penalty by the league were decisions made by Allen.

 

 

This week’s “Too smart for your own good” award:

Lions Coach Jim Schwartz wins the award for going for a fake field goal in the 4th quarter leading the Steelers by 4.  The attempt failed (as most of them do) and the Lions lost the game.

 

 

 

 

 

That’s what I think.  Tell me what you think.

 

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 https://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 https://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/ and the live show Mondays at 6 PM Eastern time on The Bill Smith Radio Show.  

He also edits .  

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

 

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