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  • Published: Sep 1st, 2009
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Tuesday Morning QB Analysis: Key issues of Week 3 PS

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NFL

Why hasn’t QB Vince Young developed in Tennessee?

Young’s biggest problem is that he hasn’t developed the vision and anticipation for both his receivers and the coverage. Part of that is because he played in the spread at Texas. There he had wide open receivers running all over the field. He has to spend more time in the film room and understand that the NFL definition of “open” is about 1/8th the separation of the college version of the the same thing.

On the pick that Browns LB Hall ran in for the TD, Young never saw Hall. That is a perfect example of his lack of vision and recognition of coverage. On the next drive 5 plays 80 yards, the biggest single play was Young’s scramble. He can make plays with his feet. That will win some games in the regular season but not AFC South titles or Super Bowls. And those are the things that the Titans want most of all. The Titans need a passing QB that can run rather than a runner that passes a little.

This explains why Young has double the number of INTs than TDs. As you get closer to the endzone, the coverage is compressed due to less yards to cover. If you struggle reading coverages in the middle of the field, you will really struggle in the red zone just like Young does.

What is the key differences between Anderson and Quinn?

The ability to process information quickly and the touch and accuracy on the short pass or screen pass. The Browns are not going to have much of a running game this year. That necessitates the short passing game to replace the yards that the running game should generate. Quinn is much more accurate at circle patterns where the RB goes around the end and across the middle just behind the LBs, the screen pass, and the swing pass where the RB slants to the sideline.

There is no question that Anderson has the much stronger arm. But he tends to trust his arm too much and throws into coverage because he believes he can “squeeze” the ball in between defenders. That leads to some really nice completions. It also leads to a lot of interceptions which is something that Coach Mangini will not abide.

Scouting Report: Bret Favre v Texans

Any game that starts with your RB going up the gut for 75 yards and a TD is going to be a good one. There is nothing wrong with Favre’s eyes. He sees the field fine and processes information as fast as he always has. He moves instinctively and finds receivers down field with guys in his face. He still has the touch to drop the ball over the blitzing LB on a screen pass. He still has the hard count to pull the D offside on a key play.

He is not the rifle armed QB he used to be. He struggles to get the ball out on a line when he is falling back to avoid a sack. And to throw the deep ball he has to wind up and change his delivery. He also has to do that when he has to throw the fast ball in between defenders. He used to be able to throw the ball 50 yards on a line with a flick of his wrist. But next month he will turn 40.

He has a much better running game, O line and defense than he had in New York. Besides, half a Favre is better than any other QB on the Vikings roster.

Why does it take college WRs a couple of years to develop in the NFL?

Most top college WRs depend on physical ability and speed to get open against a lot of average DBs in college. They are so much better athletes than the average DB that they don’t have to work to get open on technique like running crisp pattern and making fakes before their break. In the NFL the DBs are equal in physical talent and speed. The only way an NFL WR gets open is to run precise patterns and make sharp cuts. He also has to always be aware of the line to gain and the sideline. That is a lot to think about for a young WR.

Another factor is the use of the spread offense in college. The spread doesn’t focus on patterns but on flooding zones and quick reads. In college someone is always open. In the NFL, the word open takes on a whole new meaning. Open in the pros is a half step or body position rather than a window a couple of yards wide like in college.

A third factor that is not often discussed is the hits that NFL receivers take. The first NFL hit by a corner or safety is as hard as the best hit a WR got in his entire college career. It takes a while to be able to considerate on the catch and not hear the footsteps of a 210 pound safety with his sites on your chest.

KC rookie head coach Todd Haley fires OC Chan Gailey.

There is no question that the Chiefs offense wouldn’t score against air. Gailey was part of the problem but there are a lot more troubles than him. You have a QB that is unproven. Yes Matt Cassel played well in New England. But the Chiefs don’t have Randy Moss, Wes Welker and the Pats O line. They have Dwayne Bowe (a great physical talent but very inconsistent) and Bobby (I’m always hurt) Engram and a very young O line.

You also have a very over rated RB in Larry Johnson who has missed 12 games in the last 2 years with injuries. Now your QB may be hurt. Gailey wasn’t your problem. Your team is your problem. It’s a good thing you are new because this group is bad enough to get any head coach fired.

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 is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: NFL,NFL Draft,Fantasy Football,Anderson,Quinn,Favre,Gailey,Mangini,Cassel,Moss,Welker,Bowens,Engram

I'm ready for the baseball playoffs now.

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MLB

Inter-league play is over. The All Star game has been played. Now, I have had enough baseball and am ready for the playoffs. Baseball has only another 3 weeks until football and the NFL steals the spot light and doesn’t give it back. Baseball has a following but it is losing ground against other sports particularly football.

Proof of how totally football overshadows baseball can been seen most clearly in the steady decline of the TV ratings for the World Series. It has fallen about 50% in the last 10 years while the ratings for the All Star game have held fairly steady. Why? Because no one plays football in the middle of July.

Baseball has to take maximum advantage of the period when it is the only major league sport in the docket. The schedulers seem dedicated to having all the games between the Boston and the Yankees in the first few weeks of the season. But that is when both the NBA and NHL has its playoffs. A good marketing guy would never put their best games and highest draws on opposite a tough competitor. They should have waited until the MLB was the only show on TV.

Baseball faces another problem as well. The playoffs and World Series have started so late that the kids couldn’t watch them to the end. Add that to the fact that kids don’t play baseball the way we used to growing up in the 1950s, and you have the makings for a of a marketing disaster in the future.

Baseball has been trying to increase interest among the young by moving the first pitch time of playoff games earlier. It has also begun broadcasting the armature draft on television. The MLB draft will never reach the level of interest of the NFL draft for a couple of reasons. A lot of the early draft picks are high school age which very few fans have seen. Since most people don’t watch NCAA baseball except the the college world series they don’t even know the college players. So because most people don’t know the players, the interest in the draft just isn’t going to come close to that of the NBA or NFL.

So let’s move baseball of the national sports stage and get ready for the real national pass time—football.

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 is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: MLB,draft,NFL draft,NBA draft,All Star Game,World series,College football,high school sports,college baseball

Analysis: Congress is using the right approach against the BcS

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bcsX

I don’t often have good things to say about Washington D.C. or the US Congress. But in this case, they are using the right approach in challenging the BcS—Follow the money.

Sen. Hatch of Utah undoubtedly has his constituents in mind when he pushed for hearings on the BcS. I have no problem with that. The current economic problems could have been avoided had not Congress tried to force social engineering into legislation on the US financial system. At least Hatch is not trying to buy votes by giving away money!

Most major football colleges are public institutions. They get tax payer dollars to help finance their activities including many athletic departments. It is the popularity of college football that generates money for the BCS. Because the “lessor” conferences are not included in the automatic cut of the pot of gold that BcS generates, they don’t share in the bounty unless one of their teams is in one of the games. Then they split a team share and not a league share.

There are some aspects of anti-trust law that could be applied to the BcS. That however must focus on distribution of money and not forcing college presidents to accept a playoff. Let’s face it. The Presidents’ excuses for not allowing a college football playoff contain less truth than the average speech by Castro. The excuses are a sham and if they believe that we accept them as truth, they must think we are a collection of ignorant jerks. Since many of us have had the “advantage” of being educated by the institutions they represent, it tells us a lot about how seriously they take their main business.

College Presidents, the ones that are primarily responsible for voting down any playoff system, are greedy pinheads. That is why I have suggested a number of times that if you want a playoff in college football, contact the big contributors and ask them to tell the pinheads no playoff no money. If enough deep pockets did that, we would have a playoff this season.

Congress will get the attention of the pinheads. Maybe it will lead to a more equitable division of the money but probably not. Maybe it might even lead to a change in the BcS that would come closer to a playoff. That is a long shot. At the very least, it will bother the pinheads. I can get behind anything that makes the seats of the pinheads a little less comfy.

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 is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: BCS,Congress,hearings,college football,playoffs

To declare or not to declare—that is the question!

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Frying Pan Sports

To declare or not to declare—that is the question!

By Bill Smith

Every pro prospect junior and third year sophomore faces a critical question—to declare for the 09 NFL draft or wait until 2010. They have until mid January to make that decision. The problem is that they will have no idea what the NFL and the NFLPA are going to do about the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The ultimate form the CBA takes will have a huge impact on the rookie contract of the top players in the draft.

If things weren’t up in the air far enough, the sudden death of Gene Upshaw, executive director of the NFLPA, last August made things not only much more complex but reduced the odds of avoiding a strike/lockout in the 2011 season. Upshaw was heavily criticized by some of his members but presided over the deal that gave the players the largest percentage of the league gross in any professional sport. He had the ability to get the players and the league to a point that they could agree and avoid work stoppages. Now, the NFL will have to wait for the power struggle to work its way to a conclusion before negotiations can even begin. Now if the NFLPA would have adopted the old Soviet Union model for resolving power struggles, we would already know with whom the league should deal.

As things stand now, there will be a draft in 09 and 10 with a salary cap in 09 but not in 2010. That would seem to give the rookies a reason to stay at college one more year. The top guys coming out of the draft will get the biggest advantage if there is no cap.

But in this world nothing is quite that easy. One of the high priorities of the NFL owners in any new agreement is a rookie salary cap. That is something that the players will readily agree to because it means if the rookies get less, the veterans will get more of the salary cap dollars. Besides many of even the earliest draft choices wash out but take their millions of guaranteed signing bonus money with them. The rookies have never played a down in the NFL and get much more than vets in the same position that have proven themselves for years.

If there is a rookie salary cap as part of a new agreement it will be effective in 2010. And that is the rub. Eligible players can come out now under no rookie cap but with an overall salary cap. They can wait and if there is no new agreement, rake in a bonanza in the uncapped year of 2010. Or they can wait, and end up with both a rookie and overall salary cap and lose millions of dollars in their first contracts.

Admittedly this only affects the top 25 draft picks or so but for those like Sam Bradford, Oklahoma QB (3rd year Soph), Matt Stafford, QB Georgia (JR), Colt McCoy, Texas (JR), Knowshon Moreno, RB Georgia (3rd year Soph) and Chris Wells, RB Ohio State (JR) the decision is critical.

There is another couple of factors that enter into a player’s decision to come out or not as well. There is always a risk of serious injury in a year of college football. While all the top players will likely get insurance to pay them if they are injured and unable to play pro ball, the amount is not anything like the money that they would make in an average length NFL career. That insurance is also expensive. Some of the top performers may not be able to afford the coverage.

There is also the question of how many top players at their position will be in a given draft vs. what the demand for that position might be. Right now there are at least 5 NFL teams that have QB as their first or second priority in the draft or free agency in 2009. With only one senior QB being graded as a first day (2 rounds) choice and just a couple of quality free agent veteran QB’s, things look good for the afore mentioned QB candidates to come out. But what if all three plus Tim Tebo come out in 09? At least one or maybe even two or three will be second round picks because teams are very hesitant to draft a QB high in the first round. Do the names of Tim “I’m now on the” Couch (Cleveland 1999) and Alex Smith (San Francisco 2005) ring a bell? Each was a first choice over all and both got the staff that drafted them fired.

The last risk is one of matching their level of performance. Prior to the junior eligible entry date for the 2008 draft, two tackles were viewed as possible first overall choices. One, Jake Long of Michigan, was the first overall selection of the Dolphins. The other was Alex Boone LT of Ohio State. Boone decided to stay another year to see if the team could win a national title. I honor him for his loyalty but he played most of the year like he was running through wet concrete. The current grade on Boone is the middle of the third round and he is falling like the stock prices on Wall Street. He contributed to his draft grade demise by calling out his fellow players publicly but ignoring his own obvious short comings. Bad move, Alex. It cost you about $5,500,000 in signing bonus and another 10 million is salary and bonuses over the life of the first contract. For him, staying was extremely expensive.

It is likely that some will make the mistake of not coming out. But more will make the mistake of coming out when they would have been so much better off to stay and get one more year of seasoning. Every year around 60 football players that have eligibility left in college declare for the NFL draft. Every year about 50 percent of those players are not drafted or are very late 7th round choices. Everyone of that group would have been better off staying and getting another year to build their value. If my son was going to be a top 20 draft pick as a junior, I would tell him to come out and grab the cash. If he was projected to be a 3 round or later choice, I would encourage him to stay in college for another year.

In the last few years, the NFL has done a great thing by giving players a place that they can go without an agent to find out where they are ranked in the draft. The NFL has gathered a group of former GMs and personnel people to evaluate the player and give them a rough idea if they will go in the first round or well down in the draft. Unfortunately, there are agents that will tell a kid and his parents anything to get them to sign a representation agreement. Once a player does that, he loses his eligibility and has no choice but to enter the draft.

We will all be interested in seeing who stays and who goes. Either way. we wish the kids that have given so much effort for a sport we all love the very best no matter what they do.

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 is a senior writer for NFLDraftDog.com and edits fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

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