• Author:
  • Published: Jan 21st, 2010
  • Category: NFL Football
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The NBA: First half season review

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nba

Game of the week–LA 87 @ Cleveland 93

The Cavs trailed for 3 quarters but the 4th quarter is LeBron time. LeBron scored 37 with 12 in the last period to make the difference. Bryant had 31It was an outstanding game. Varejao adds so much energy and rebounding and that was critical in this game. He hit 2 free throws with 20 seconds to go after forcing a fowl going after a miss on a free throw by LeBron. This is the kind of game that the Cavs would have lost a couple of years ago. They have now swept the Lakers in their 2 games.

Top NBA teams are struggling with injuries.

The top teams from last year are all struggling with injuries.

Cleveland (33-11) leads the Eastern Conference but will not have G Mo Williams for up to a month. They traded for Shaq but Coach Brown has not figured out yet how to make a square peg fit into a round hole. He is not playing enough minutes to have the impact the Cavs expected. The Cavs need to find a way to stay in front of Boston and Orlando to keep the home floor advantage in the East. There are problems on both ends of the court. On O the team is depending too much on LeBron and the others are going to have to make up for the loss of the scoring of Williams. They will particularly miss Mo’s 3 pointers. The D has allowed twice as many 100 point games as they did last year at this point in the season.

Boston (27-13) has been playing without Garnett for too long. They hope to have him back this week. That is going to help them get back in the run for the top spot in the East. Boston has lost games they should have been able to win like recent losses to Detroit, Chicago and Dallas.

Atlanta (27-14) has crept up on the big three by winning most of the games they should be able to and pulling off a few upsets. But after a really nice win over Phoenix, they lost at home to Oklahoma City. Just like last year, their problem has been consistency of intensity.

Orlando (27-15) has had a tough January so far. They are only 3-6 since the first of the year. That included a couple of tough road trips and a costly loss at home to Toronto. Despite a win over Atlanta in that run, they fell behind the Hawks due to the losses on the road. Road trips tend to even out over the season. Orlando has more talent that the Hawks and should overtake them.

Charlotte (21-19) has been one of the hottest teams in January. They have gone 9-1 including wins at Cleveland and Miami. They have moved up to 5th place in the East. Their only loss was a bad game at New York. If the Bobcats can stay hot, they have a chance to move higher in the final rankings. Don’t bet on that though. Starting on the 25th they have a 6 game west coast road trip that will bring them back to reality.

Miami (21-20) went 3-3 in a January west coast trip and is 5-5 in January. They took a bad loss on Wednesday to the Bobcats 104-65. The team has been very inconsistent. They are also playing Wade 37 minutes a game which may be too much. They need his scoring as well as his assists.

Western Conference

Los Angles (32-10) has the best record in the league but the team has been up and down in intensity. Bryant has been playing hurt because the team isn’t close to the same without him. He looks healthy now and playing again at a high level. However, his accuracy on 3 point shots has suffered due to a finger injury. The Lakers have a 2 games in the loss column advantage over the Cavs going into the game last night between the two conference leaders. They are 7-3 in January but lost to the Clippers 102-91. Including last night, they are on a 7 game road trip to the east cost. That will be key to their ability to stay on top.

Dallas (28-14) is 5-3 so far in 2010. They had a nice win at Boston and are in a 5 game east road trip. They have to find a way to beat the Lakers. They have already lost to LA twice this month. Despite the team trying to build to beat LA, they don’t match up well. They have missed Howard. He has only played 21 game so far. He is critical to the team’s success.

Denver (27-14) is hot. They are 7-3 in 2010 including a nice win at home against the Cavs 99-97. The key is that the Nuggets are winning the close games which is something they had trouble doing last year. They have 10 players averaging 10 or more minutes a game. That helps. Billips is averaging 18.8 points per game. That helps too. He has been the best addition this team has had in a long time.

San Antonio (25-16) has gone 6-5 in 2010. They are currently 4th in the West but because they have so much talent and experience in the playoffs, they are always a threat to get to the finals. When you have a player the quality of Ginobili coming off the bench, you are really good. Despite the age of the roster the team has been pretty healthy this year. That could be trouble for the rest of the league in the playoffs.

Portland (26-17) has suffered the loss of C Oden. He was the first pick in the 07 draft but seems very brittle. His entire career is threatened by his injuries. Even so they have been one of the pleasant surprises in the league this year. They have gone 5-4 in January. Roy and Aldridge have picked up the slack. Roy is scoring 23 a game with 5 assists and Aldridge is pulling down over 8 rebounds a game. They are too inexperienced to know they shouldn’t be doing this well. That makes them dangerous.

Phoenix (25-18) has been a surprise. They failed to make the playoffs last year but are 1 win up in the standings for the 6th spot. There was a lot of trade talk involving Stoudemire last off season but he is back and playing well putting up 21 points a game. The key is that he has been able to play nearly 35 minutes a game. Nash, Richardson, Frye and Grant have all been contributing and have been healthy so far.

Your fantasy football doesn’t have to be over. Run a pro football franchise all year long for free at . Tell them Coach Smith sent you.

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 is a regular contributor on Cleveland Sports Radio http://www.sportstalkcleveland.com/ Monday morning at 11. He has also published several novels on

and edits .

Technorati Tags: NBA,NBA Playoffs,Cavilers,Celtics,Hawks,Magic,Bobcats,Heat,Lakers,Maverics,Nuggets,Spurs,Suns,Trail Blazers,LeBron James,Bryant

Some Christmas wishes in the Sports world.

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s

Cowboy Coach Phillips—Some wins after Turkey Day. The Boys haven’t done very well in December. JJ told the Boys faithful that if Phillips doesn’t win in the playoffs, he will be history. Phillips needs some help selling his house ’cause that ain’t happening.

Browns coach Mangenous—One more really silly owner to bail his career out again. Holmgren is “Football Czar of the Month” in Cleveland. There is little chance that Mangini will keep his job past 4:01 PM Sunday January 3. He got the current gig just after getting fired in New York. He needs another very gullible owner.

Buc Coach Morris—A copy of The Idiot’s Guide to Pro Football. Morris is badly over his head in Tampa. He was not even qualified to be OC let alone HC. With the team 1-forever, he needs to learn the game a lot more quickly to keep his job for next year.

Saints’ DC Greg Williams—A head coaching job in the NFL. Williams never got a decent shot in Buffalo and has proven with both the Redskins and Saints that he is ready for a top job. With the number of teams that will be looking for new top guys after this year, he should get a chance.

Former Browns’ Coach Crennel—Renewal of the Coors beer commercials because he isn’t likely to get another job in the NFL. Crennel is too nice a guy to be effective as a head man. He has only had success only in a highly disciplined situation. He needs the commercials because he needs work even though he is still being paid by the Browns.

Ex ND Coach Weis—A Christmas Card from Holmgren. Weis’ best shot at an OC spot is with the Browns to help QB Quinn develop. They were very close in ND and if anyone can turn Quinn’s career around, Weis believes he is the one.

Ohio State Coach Tressel—A win in the Rose Bowl. The Big 10 has a bad record in bowl games with OSU at the bottom of the list. Having suspended several players, his chances are less this year than most. Another couple of losses in the post season and Tress may find out that beating Michigan may not be enough to keep his job.

Florida Football Coach Urban Meyer—A Tebow clone at QB. After winning 2 BcS Championships in 4 years, Florida will likely take a step back next season. They lose their star QB and most of the D this year. Given the development of the Bama team as well as a couple of other SEC teams, it will be very hard for them to get back to the national championship game.

For College Football fans everywhere–A real playoff.  We will not get a playoff until the big contributors to college programs tell the pinhead presidents “NO MORE MONEY UNTIL YOU SUPPORT A REAL PLAYOFF!” If you wonder what it will take, follow the money.

The Chicago Cubs—Some pitching and a shot at the World Series. It’s been over 100 years since Cubbie fans had a chance to say something other than “wait ’til next year.” Enough of that, let’s see some playoff baseball.

Cleveland Cavs–Some of the magic from last year but in the 2010 playoffs.  O’Neil has been OK but the team has not come together like they did last year.  They need to regain the chemistry they had last year but extend that in the playoffs.

Most of all—A very Merry Christmas to all of you. Thank you for taking the time to read this site. If you have any suggestions for more gifts for sports teams, let me know.

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 Football,Cowboys,Playoffs,MLB Baseball,Browns,Buccaneers,Morris,Phillips,Saints,Williams,Crennel,Holmgren,Weis,Tressel,Ohio State,Notre Dame,Collegel Football,NFL Draft,Florida,Tebow,Cubs,NBA Basketball,Cavilers,Alabama,SEC,Big 10,Rose Bowl,bowl games,BCS,BCS Championship game

What to watch for in the games this weekend.

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football

College Football:

Georgia Tech v. Clemson  This game was interesting on a couple of levels.  First, GT is going to be a nightmare to defend.  They have the Navy option game working like a fine tuned race car.  But Clemson in previous years would have folded up like a 78 Ford Fairmont after the opponent put 21 points on the board.  But this Clemson team fought back and made a game of it.  These two should be fun to watch going forward.

USC @ Ohio State Forget what the experts are saying. This game will depend on 2 things—the OSU O and D lines. Can OSU drive USC off the ball to run and give Pryor time to throw? Can OSU’s D stop the run and put pressure on the USC QB? The answer to both is no and OSU will lose the game by 14.

Notre Dame @ Michigan Coach Rich Rodriguez’s system will work but he does not have the players on O or D to make it effective. ND finally has some key parts in place. ND wins by 10.

South Carolina @ Georgia Last year all the experts had Georgia at the top of the rankings. They had injuries and failed to live up to the hype. This year very few are talking about them. Look for them to be better than they were last year even without Stafford at QB. Georgia wins by 10.

North Carolina @ Connecticut NC is ranked in the top 20 but UConn gets no love. UC lost a lot to the draft this spring but is a program on the rise. UConn wins at home in a upset.

Syracuse @ Penn State New QB Greg Paulus had the Orange moving last week with the exception of the fumble on the first drive. That won’t continue and PS wins by 30.

Pro Football:

Tennessee @ Pittsburgh The Steelers won despite the fact that they can not run the ball. The problem is in the O line and won’t be solved this season. Despite having all the other parts, the lack of the ability to run will come back to bite the Steelers.

Miami @ Atlanta Last year Miami improved a great deal. This year they are better but they won’t win as many. ATL wins.

Philadelphia @ Carolina The Eagles show their power against a good Carolina D. Eagles win.

Washington @ New York The experts pick the Giants to go all the way. They won’t because of their lack of WRs. The Giants win but closer than it should be.

Chicago @ Green Bay The Pack is lucky to catch the Bears early. GB wins this one but they won’t at the return engagement at Soldier Field.

Minnesota @ Cleveland Mangini’s trick to keep the name of the starting QB secret works in a big way and the Browns…Just kidding. This game is over at half time. It’s going to be a L O N G season in Brownie land.

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: Georgia Tech,Clemson,USC,Ohio State,Notre Dame,Michigan,Pryor,College football,North Carolina,Connecticut,Syarcuse,Penn State,nfl,NFL Draft,Tennessee,Pittsburgh,Miami,Atlanta Falcons,Philadelphia,Carolina,Washington,New York Giants,Chicago,Green Bay,Paulus,Browns,Vikings

  • Author:
  • Published: Sep 1st, 2009
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Tuesday Morning QB Analysis: Key issues of Week 3 PS

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

Don't get too excited about a 3 team deal involving Jay Cutler and the Browns.

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Fryingpan Sports

Don’t get too excited about a 3 team deal involving Jay Cutler and the Browns.

By Bill Smith

There is a lot of talk about the Browns being the point guard in a three way deal for Denver QB Jay Cutler. Not so fast, my friend. There are more than a couple chuck holes between Cleveland and anywhere Cutler is liable to end up.

The trade chatter has Brown’s QB Brady Quinn going to Denver, Cutler going to Detroit, Tampa, Seattle, or the Jets, and a covey of draft choices coming to the Browns. There are a covey of problems with that scenario.

  1. There is no way that Denver gives up a semi-proven QB with a pro bowl and 37 starts in the NFL over 3 seasons in exchange for Quinn and his 3 starts and 65.8 passer rating. The Broncos will want Quinn and a high draft pick (late 1 or very early 2) to make that deal.
  1. Tampa is out of the contest because they don’t have a second. They traded it to Cleveland for TE Kelvin Winslow. They would give up their 1 for Cutler but that would have to go to Denver to complete the Cutler deal.
  1. Even if Tampa’s 1 came to Cleveland, the Browns would have to give at least one of their 2 second round picks to Denver and possibly both. That would net the Browns the equivalent of a third round pick (the difference between a middle first and a middle 2nd round pick) in exchange for Quinn. That is not a deal that I would make.
  1. I hear the QB Derek Anderson fans chanting now—what about DA? In my opinion, Denver would not accept DA plus a draft choice in exchange for Cutler. I can see them only taking Quinn because he was tutored in college by Charlie Weis at Notre Dame. Weis has Patriot roots and new Bronco coach Josh McDaniel will employ a very similar offense to that of Weis.

So despite the chatter, don’t get too excited. I can’t see any way in which a three way deal could net the Browns anything close to value for Quinn because Denver would want more than Quinn in exchange for Cutler.

There is a possibility of a direct deal with Detroit or the Jets. Quinn for the Dallas pick the Lions own (#22) would make some sense as would the Quinn for the Jets 1 at #17. I am not sure either team would make that deal but the Lions might not be too excited about either rookie QB and want to use the first overall pick for an OT.

The Jets would love anybody that even looked like an NFL quality QB. A more likely deal would be made after the draft if the Jets can’t get either top rated rookie QB. They would be willing to trade a 1 in 2010 for Quinn. That would not be a good deal for the Browns because Quinn’s value would then be the equivalent of a second round pick this year.

The Jets might take Anderson with his big arm in exchange for a 2010 first round pick if they don’t get something they like in the 09 draft. Given the winds in New York in December, Anderson would be a better choice for the Jets than Quinn. The Browns and Jets might do a deal for a second this year and conditional 2nd or 3rd next year for Anderson depending on how he performs.

In any 3 team deal, if the Browns try to be the middle man, they will end up in the middle of a mess.

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 .

My email is [email protected]

Technorati Tags: Browns,Cutler,Quinn,Anderson,Broncos. NFL,football,trade,draft pick,Tampa Bay,Buccaneers,Lions,SeaHAWKS,pro bowl,Notre Dame,Weis,Jets,New York

Saturday's nibblets around the net.

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Fryingpan Sports

Saturday’s nibblets around the net.

By Bill Smith

What can the Cavs do to keep LeBron James after 2010?

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Every time James plays in the Garden or talks about playing there, he acts like a 15 year old in puppy love with his 25 year old English teacher. So what is the big deal?

It can’t be the endorsement money because LeBron already ranks #59 in the Forbes list of top Celebrities Endorsements list. According to Forbes, he got 125 million dollars in deals last year alone. He can make just as much money in Cleveland as in New York.

The only things that New York has to offer is life style and the Garden. So what can the Cavs do?

My Advice: Win baby, just win. The Cavs have added some great pieces to help LeBron win a Championship in Cleveland. Win a title in 08-09 and another in 09-10 and James will stay. If New York signs James, he will be right where he was 3 years ago in Cleveland—the star surrounded by sows ears. They won’t have enough money left to sign any help for him. Jordan couldn’t win until the Bulls brought in help and James won’t ever win a championship in New York. He might in Cleveland.

LeBron James had his triple-double stolen.

Instant replay jumped up and took a chunk out of the LeBron Legend. The review of the tape took one rebound away from James and prevented him from making history with a triple-double 50+ point night. It would have been the first time since 1975 that had been accomplished. He did it in the Garden in New York. My Advice: Lebron, they don’t love you in New York as much as we do in Cleveland. We would never let the pinheads take your piece of history away.

UPDATE: Reeves signs with the Cowboys—sort of.

After working for a couple of days, the details of the consulting contract between Dan Reeves and the Cowboys never got worked out. Jerry Jones, owner of the Boys, wanted Reeves to work a lot more than he wanted to. According to the rumors, Reeves was called in to help the Offense coordinated by the “head coach in waiting” Jason Garrett. The Cowboys have seen their offensive production fall like leaves from a dead tree in the last quarter of the season. My Advice: If you have to bring in a consultant to help the coach in waiting, maybe he should wait until he can do the job he has before being considered for a promotion.

The NFLPA vs. NFL retired players

A jury in Federal court found that the NFLPA had cheated the retired players out of a fair share of the endorsement/promotion money it collects for use of player likenesses. The NFLPA is appealing the jury decision that awarded 28.1 million to the players.

The AP reported that Interim executive director Richard Berthelsen said the union contends the ruling “was wrongly decided by the jurors and that there was not sufficient evidence in the record on which to base the verdict they rendered.”

My Advice: This is not the time for the players association to be seen as taking money from the much poorer retired players. Most of the retired players never made the kind of money the current players do. These are the same retired players that also are not getting the health care they need because of red tape and money concerns on the part of both the league and NFLPA. Give them the money and be done with it. With a contract negotiations coming up, you don’t want to be in court taking money out of the pockets of retired players. You may need the good graces of the court to help you against the NFL.

Alex Boone is the latest player to suffer from terminal stupidity.

Alex Boone, the senior Ohio State tackle, wasn’t satisfied with driving his draft value down just with his poor play during the 08 season. So, in an attempt to make sure that no one would waste a middle round pick on him, he got himself arrested in Orange County California Sunday.

Boone, who by some accounts was considered for the top choice in the 07 draft along with Michigan’s Jake Long, pulled out of the 07 draft. BAD MOVE. By the end of the 08 season, Boone had dropped from a sure first round pick to a 3rd or 4th round prospect. Now he will be lucky to get a look from the Arena League if it resumes play in 2010. He has yet to be invited to the NFL Combine. Of course his ability to attend may be determined by when he gets out of jail. My Advice: Stay away from this clown. I wouldn’t touch him with a 40 foot pole with a 25 foot extension. If a team is dumb enough to pick Boone, it deserves what it will get.

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 .

My email is [email protected]

Technorati Tags: LeBron James,New York,Garden,Knicks,NBA,Cleveland,Cavilers,Forbes,triple-double,Reeves,Cowboys,Jones,Jason Garrett,NFLPA,NFL,Football,Boone,Ohio State

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