Monthly Archives: September 2012

IMPRESSIONS OF THE BROWNS/RAVENS GAME

I am live blogging the Browns/Ravens game because I actually get to see it! Thanks Time Warner! a fair warning: If this game sucks as much as I think it will, I’ll probably stop watching around halftime. It’s already going as of 8:34, so here’s my thoughts so far:

Ray Lewis hugging refs was funny. The refs getting cheered was also hilarious. That will last exactly 2 weeks. Watch. Then normal bad calls (as opposed to extra bad lately) will return.

The browns would be passable if they had a QB that wasn’t a 28 year old rookie that wasn’t the best in his college conference.

Flacco looks good, he better put up some yards, he’s starting for 2/3 of my fantasy teams.

8:36: Flacco yelled “Alaska” in his snap count and then ray rice punked someone with a stiff arm. I’m in this game.

8:39: Cheering the flags is excellent. Baltimore fans are silly.

8:48: I really hate the NFL network commercials. Steve Marriucci, Kurt Warner? If they didn’t have Deion, I’d be so against this network’s coverage.

8:49: The Ravens fans have already started to boo calls against the Ravens. Honeymoon over.

8:51: 3rd and 22 after penalties, huh? What’s happening Ravens? Flacco? Why do you hate me?

8:52: Josh Cribbs just got hit so hard in the head, it’s scary. He seriously may have a broken neck. He’s not moving at all and people have surrounded him. Watch this replay, i’ve never quite seen a hit like it. I’m not sure if he’s opened his eyes…

8:56: Cribbs is up, walking, smiling. Ravens Ball. my fantasy team is very happy.

9:02: Flacco throws a pass where there are no ravens and 3 browns. Interception. Why have you forsaken me football gods? 0-0

9:05: The Browns offensive coordinator mighta figured out how to run his offense. Give it to Richardson, let Weeden throw check downs to Richardson, make sure he touches the ball almost every play. That’s how I’d do it too, especially with Weeden (also, how terrible is your GM if one of your top draft picks is immediately a liability and everyone knew he’d be?)

9:07: Weeden pass right through Greg Little’s hands. Yes, that’s their number 1 WR too, this offense is Trent Richardson, a really talented offensive line, and liabilities. Interesting thing I’d not realized—-the Browns have a pretty competent defense, especially secondary. If they spend some money on offense in the offseason and Richardson can stay healthy and continue improving, this could be a contending team in 2-3 years.

9:11: End of the 1st, still 0-0, kind of a boring game. I’m more intrigued by the Cleveland defense than anything. This I knew, their best cornerback, Joe Haden, is out the first 4 games. I believe he was the second highest rated CB last year (to Revis). So, this defense is only going to get a lot better. I’m a little intrigued. Too bad Weeden is atrocious.

9:14: I think the football gods are reading this. Flacco with 2 long passes to open 2nd quarter. All of a sudden in the red zone.

9:15: I’m playing Dennis Pitta and Flacco in one league. I’d love a Flacco to Pitta TD.

9:15: Flacco to Torrey Smith, Touchdown, 7-0.

9:16: I lied, botched extra point, 6-0. Great, since in another league my kicker is Justin Tucker. Fantastic ūüôā

9:19: showing replay and drawing, announcer draws boobies. Best replay ever.

9:21: 3rd and 5, Weeden grossly overthrows his running back not named richardson. absolutely ridiculous.

9:26: Ravens offense is marching down the field. This is more of what i expected going in. Flacco just missed big throw to Pitta, Ravens with 45 yard FG, 9-0

9:39: Shot of Colt McCoy on the sideline, his thought bubble “I got beat out by this guy? How?”

9:40: Shot of Browns offensive coordinator. I was unaware, it’s Brad Childress. Suddenly, all makes sense.

9:43: Browns are in the Redzone. Weeden looks competent. I can’t tell up from down.

9:44: Richardson runs it in. Cleveland does not botch the extra point. 9-7 Ravens

9:47: The spread for this game was 11.5. I’m shocked, I’d have taken the Ravens and given the points.

9:50: Everytime Michael Oher is on the screen, I think of the blind side.

9:51: And Brad Nessler makes a “Blind Side” reference. Quality.

9:52: This ravens offense can do nothing. Pitta has no catches. I’m displeased. I expect Harbaugh to fix this at halftime.

9:54: The Browns defensive coordinator is Dick Jauron? What is the Browns coaching staff, the island of misfit toys? Seriously, Childress and Jauron. I could make a youtube mix of hilarious Vikings/Bills clips courtesy of these two nincompoops.

10:00: Halftime. This game got real boring, real fast. I’m watching for my Fantasy teams at this point.

10:14: 2nd half starts, really raining.

10:16: alright, first time was funny, now every time Michael Oher is on camera, we get a Blind Side joke. Has happened the last 2 plays. ugh. Flacco overthrows and announcers say it has to do with rain. This bodes poorly for my fantasy team.

10:21: Ray rice is stuffed twice so Flacco runs it in himself. He was gonna throw it to Pitta, but he slipped. Sad day for me. However, yay more fantasy points. 16-7 Ravens.

10:33: Yawn.

10:38: Flea Flicker that ended incomplete, sad, it was fun to see.

10:44: 47 yd FG missed by Ravens after a bunch of penalties. Still 16-10. (oh yeah i missed a browns FG).

10:49: Ravens intercept a horribly thrown Weeden pass, pick 6, 23-10 Ravens. Unfortunate for my fantasy team, because now with the rain and the lead, Flacco will be done throwing.

11:02: in the last few minutes, the browns got a fg. The world still doesnt care.

11:03: Pitta has a ball slapped away from him. It’s a point per reception league, I could get a point for him touching the ball. Let’s get this shit together Flacco.

11:09 Sonya called me. This game really doesn’t matter anymore.

11:24: i’m back in, there was a browns FG, 23-16 Ravens, still no Pitta catches, 3:42 left. Also I’m playing my Dad in one league and he has Anquan Boldin. 9 receptions, 131 yards. That’s solid Fantasy play Dad, considering Boldin has been largely irrelevant for like 3 years. It also appears to have stopped raining. Damn you Dennis Pitta.

11:26: The browns are boring, but the announcers make a good point, they are a play or two away from winning games. They aren’t pitiful, they might be out of my bottom 3.

11:27: Big Rice run, flag down on Oher. Lots of Raven Penalties.

11:28: Another big Raven Run, they are clearly in run mode. I hate Dennis Pitta right now.

11:32: You know, i got distracted by Pitta, but Flacco has sneakily had an awesome game. 28/46, 356 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT and a Rush TD. Nice fantasy haul Flacco. If you would just throw a garbage TD to Pitta, you’d be my favorite QB not named Mark or Cam (also known as my favorite quarterback, white category)

11:36: Announcers saying that special teams coaches should be considered more for head coaching jobs. Really interesting point. Special Teams coaches do coach every player on the roster in some capacity. Then they went through which head coaches had been special teams coaches (John Harbaugh, Bill Bellichik, others who i don’t remember). Then they talked about which coaches could be head coaches. I nominate Mike Westoff from my Jets, best special teams coach in the league.

11:39: The Brandon Weeden 2 minute drill is shockingly effective. They are marching up the field with 39 seconds left and no timeouts. If they score, I’ll never make another weeden joke.

11:39: Receiver was SO close to a TD pass. Oh man, exciting?

11:40: Weeden almost throws a pick. 10 seconds left. I think this ends with a Hail Mary. Monday night flashbacks!!! Who knew this amazingly boring game would actually end excitingly.

11:42: Weeden threw it to the same spot as the GB/Seattle game. No good, nice game. ¬†That’s some poetry.

11:42: PERSONAL FOUL ON BALTIMORE, CLEVELAND GETS ANOTHER SHOT.

11:43: Ravens call timeout, I’m on the edge of my seat. This is amazing, the cleveland browns are exciting?

11:44: Nice to know at the last second Brandon Weeden is still Brandon Weeden. A grossly overthrown ball, WAY out of the back of the endzone. Whew, the world makes sense to me again, Brandon Weeden is still not really a competent quarterback (although he threw 320 yards and looked shockingly acceptable on the last drive, it kind of scared me).

Ravens 23, Browns 16

Final impressions

Cleveland will finish in last place in their division and they are not a good team. But they have potential. Richardson is great, the defense is not bad, and the offensive line is really good. Give them a few free agents, a strong draft, and some time to mature (and maybe Brandon Weeden is the QB from the last drive) and this is a team that could contend in the next 2 years. Just by covering the spread against a far superior Ravens team, I’m impressed enough to knock them out of my bottom 3. Hello New Orleans!!!!

The Ravens might be the best team in the AFC. I love the offense and the defense. Flacco is solid and they have a surprising amount of weapons. Defensively they are old but still potent. The biggest problems is penalties. Last week and this week (i’ve watched two ravens games in a row and I really don’t care about them, what’s wrong with me?) it felt like every other play was a holding penalty against them. They gotta lock that down.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed it ūüôā

Scott

Welcome back folks, time for my weekly football rant

Mwahaha. I got back in to OliveSatire. To be fair, I was only trying for like 20 minutes, the hiatus can’t be blamed on me missing the password for the blog. It can be blamed on Sonya moving to NY, my general lack of content worth blogging about, laziness, Mitt Romney, the declining dollar. In any case, I’m not here to make excuses (although they were pretty awesome), I’m here to talk football. NFL football to be specific. Although, I did catch a clip of the lingerie league and it was….interesting. I really didn’t expect them to hit each other so hard, but I digress.¬†

So the purpose of this (hopefully, but I mean my track record would suggest otherwise) weekly post is to save my twitter followers, my girlfriend, my best friend, and everyone else my continuous ranting about the NFL. I may even live blog a game or two. You know, once I figure out what a live blog is, how to do it, and decide that it’s something I should do with my time. Although it probably won’t be this week, because I’m going to be weeping most of it (i’ll get there later on). So i figure the format for these blogs will be to talk a little about last weeks games, maybe hit a few headlines of the week (gee I wonder where I’ll go this week…cough monday night football cough), preview a few games of the coming week complete with the spread for any gambling readers (Yes Steve, maybe you’ll listen to me next time and not put money against Randy Russell Wilson and the Seahawks Defense!). I also want to include every week a discussion of top 3 and bottom 3 teams in the league as I think this will be interesting to look back on (for me at least) as the season goes on. Since I think at most 3 people will read this, feel free to comment, especially about the top 3/bottom 3 thing, because I think it’s interesting to see where other people see the state of the league.¬†

Games of last week

Carolina 7, Giants 36  AND Jets 23, Dolphins 20

So I wanted to lump these two together for two reasons. 1) There isn’t so much to say about either game, they were both messy, but the Giants are better than the Dolphins, hence the difference in results. 2) 3 of the 4 teams in these games (not the Giants) share a common problem, the one that will be the Panthers undoing this year. They cannot play from behind. All of these teams are designed to be able to set the pace of the game. When you are trailing, you are forced to alter your pass/run ratio in the favor of pass, your operating leverage increases thus increasing your chance for failure. whoa i blacked out and started talking accounting there. What I mean is, you go for higher risk/higher reward plays that don’t pan out. Running the ball is safer. The Panthers especially, but to a lesser extent the Jets and the Dolphins, are designed to run the ball, then when appropriate have Cam Newton roll out of the pocket, throw to his tight end, or complete a play action pass. This is not an offense that is designed to run the ball only 20 out of 55 plays. That’s not the Cam Newton (or Mark Sanchez, or Ryan Tannehill) blueprint to success. Unfortunately, Carolina is the only team in the league who has given up a TD on all three of the opening drives against them. Additionally, they play Atlanta next week, the only team that has scored on all three opening drives. You know another team that can’t play from behind…..

 

Minnesota 24, San Francisco 13

The Niners may be designed in the same way as the Panthers. Alex Smith can’t be asked to win you a game. He can play short passes, screens, he’s brilliant at that. Thankfully, and this isn’t the case with the Panthers, the 49ers defense is going to provide him with what he needs much more often than it does not. What happened in Minnesota on Sunday is that we found out that Adrian Peterson can still go and Christian Ponder is not to be¬†trifled¬†with. Like I said before the season, the NFC North is the best division in Football, followed (surprisingly) closely by the NFC West.¬†

 

Let’s talk quickly about the refs because I really don’t want to rehash my twitter feed or ESPN, but the games I watched were so atrociously called that I really was tired of watching. The patriots ravens game on sunday night seemed like the worst reffed game ever until I saw the Monday night debacle. Look, Jennings from the Packers caught that interception, any way you cut it, but Russell Wilson should never have gotten to throw the pass. There was a bogus roughing the passer call a few plays before that negated a great packer interception. I like the seahawks a lot, i picked them to win a wild card, but they should have lost this game. I think the media has run with this ad nauseum, I just hope it gets the officials and the NFL to the bargaining table. The fact that this is about 50 million dollars, the NFL wanted to take away the pension of the referees, it’s all just disgusting. Roger Goodell is the worst¬†commissioner¬†in sports. We go from bounties—a debacle where the NFL far overreacted, then overturned its player suspensions, didn’t touch the coaches, ruined the Saints this year, looked weak and powerless. ¬†Then he preaches player safety while having the replacement refs and asking for an 18 game schedule. Goodell is just really really bad. Who woulda thought Bud Selig would be the best commissioner, and he’s always seemed bumbling and clueless. Actually, the more shocking thing is that Gary Bettman is still better than Roger, which is also amazing cause the NHL is locked out for the second time in 10 years.¬†

Game previews: 

San Fran (+3.5) at NY Jets

Oh boy this could be really ugly. Or, it could not. This really goes one of two ways. Either everyone (myself included, I picked a 49ers/Texans SB) is right about SF and they come in and mop the floor with the Revis-less Jets. Or, we saw the real SF last week in Minnesota, with a scared Alex Smith and receivers that really had trouble getting open. Unfortunately, they still have Frank Gore, the Jets couldn’t stop a nosebleed if it knew how to run between the tackles.¬†

The one positive I’ll say about the Jets (since I bleed green and white, I need to say something): 6 teams need to make the playoffs from the AFC. Name me 6 quality AFC teams right now. Houston then who? New England, Baltimore, maybe Oakland or Denver (someone has to come out of the AFC West and right now, I really think they should just lose their playoff bid out of mediocrity). Name me wild cards then? Buffalo? Come on now, that’s pushing it. My point is, the Jets could sneak in because the AFC is garbage this year. I wish I had realized this before the Revis injury, i’d have been much more stoked about the season.

Pick: SF 21 Jets 10

 

Minnesota (-6) at Detroit

I’m all in on Minnesota. Ponder looked special and the Lions look more unimpressive than ever. Tennessee looked competent against them and that’s saying a lot. I like the Vikings to ride the SF momentum and slaughter Detroit. The only concern is the D-line of Detroit getting serious pressure on Ponder. He doesn’t seem to do great when pressured.¬†

Minnesota 35  Detroit 28

 

NY Giants (+2) at Philly

Ah Philly. Who isn’t enjoying this right now? When I made my bet that Michael Vick would start less than 12 games this year, I figured it was because he’d be Michael Vick and get hurt. However, after the Giants defensive line makes him fumble twice (over/under on Michael Vick turnovers, 3.5, you gotta take the over), he may lose his starting job to the rookie Nick Foles (which, who the hell is this guy? ESPN did 2000 years of draft coverage and I didn’t hear his name once. Now he’s the guy who tore up the preseason and will be starting for the Eagles by the end of the season? Come on now ESPN, that’s just sloppy). The Giants proved that no matter who is hurt, they have a team. It was kind of awe-inspiring to watch random bodies off the street continually do well. Andre Brown was cut by like 12 other teams and then had over 100 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns against Carolina. These division rivalry games are always intense, but I think the Giants win by at least 2 TD’s here and maybe (hopefully) Vick is pulled by the end of the game. To be clear, that is why I’m watching it!

Giants 35 Eagles 14

 

 

Top 3 Teams

1. Atlanta

2. San Fran

3. Houston

Atlanta isn’t perfect. They have no running game, they really don’t cover well. But their defense is tough, the line is strong, and Matt Ryan after 3 games is the MVP. SF had a setback against Minnesota but they are still amazing, that Defense is still going to win them a super bowl and I still think they’d beat Atlanta in a game. Houston is really good, but they benefit from an easy schedule. I love Peyton Manning, but the Denver defense is garbage, they have no run game, and Peyton can’t throw it more than 20 yards well. In short, McKayla is not impressed. Show me Houston beating someone who is really good and I’ll be a believer again. (although, they are in the AFC, see my Jets wishful thinking above)

Bottom 3 teams

1. Washington

2. Cleveland

3. Colts

I really really wanted 3 to be New Orleans. But the Colts defense is just so terrible, it’s really laughable. Additionally, the offensive line of Andrew Luck is going to kill him. I’d be shocked if he doesn’t miss at least a game this year. Cleveland also has no defense and Brandon Weeden just looks scared and confused. If they do what they did last week and run the ball well with Richardson, they will not be on this list again. The likelihood of this, obviously, is low. Finally, the poor Redskins. RGIII looked so good in week 1 but the truth is that he has no team around him. No one. Alfred Morris is barely capable. The line is terrible. His best receiver is out and even when he’s back, when your 1 is Pierre Garcon, you’ve got problems. Defensively, they weren’t great to start with and then have been just decimated by injury. RGIII is exciting to watch, he still may win rookie of the year and they may win games by his sheer force of will, but this is a bad football team. New Orleans is awful too, but they just may not be quite as bad as these 3, I’m hoping to include the Saints next week (you can tell I’m a bit biased, no?)

So that’s it, I hope you enjoyed and have a nice week of football and such.¬†

 

Scott