All I can say about today is WOW! I could pretend and try and write a little about things economic, but I am just too excited about the great football games today
Sunday Wrap Up
Gee, which game will I start off with....
New England Patriots 27 Baltimore Ravens 21
This was a playoff game in September. It was obvious that both teams saw this game as a must win. The hitting and execution on both sides was top level. I think this was the most exciting regular season game I have seen in some time.
So how did the Patriots do it? Running the football. A strange blind spot for the Ravens defense is inside run defense. If a team has a good line and executes well running right at the middle linebacker (Ray Lewis) does work. Not great mind you, but it is better than nothing which is what you get running outside against the Ravens.
Much will be made of the two huge "roughing the passer" calls against Baltimore, but the rules are clear. No shots to the head and no diving at the QB's knees. While both calls were on the low end of clear, they were both clear. Phil Simms (Go Morehead State!!) stated that you cannot get into a spot where you are trying to gauge how big a shot to the head is, or how blatant a shot to the knees were.
The Patriots defense is getting better every game. Brandon Meriweather may still lack great coverage skills at Safety, but he hits a ton! This has been missing in New England for 2 years. The final drop on 4th down by the Ravens receiver was a direct result of the hard hitting by the secondary, the receiver was already looking around before he had the ball.
A dramatic, hard fought clash of great teams. The Ravens have nothing to feel bad about, I think they will get better because of this game. While not an upset in real terms, I would call this game "surprising".
New Orleans Saints 24 New York Jets 10
The Saints win against everyone on ESPN's pick for the Superbowl after 3 games. 3 games!
An early onslaught by the New Orleans defense meant an early 17-0 lead. The Saints then went about doing everything they could do to lose the game with turnovers (Reggie Bush needs help), stalled drives, and many 4th and short failures.
Still, their defense never really let the Jets in the game, and late Drew Brees settled down and moved the ball well. If New Orleans can run the ball like they have so far AND they can play pressure defense like they have so far they will be a top level team. A bye week for the Saints, then a game against the NY Giants will answer plenty of questions.
As for the Jets, their defense is for real. I had some doubts, but it is as good as it seems. Their offense is spotty however, and Mark Sanchez looked a bit over his head in a noisy dome. Still, I think they will take away some good lessons from this game.
Randoms on the Rest
A quick thought on the other games:
-The Bengals should just play the last 3 minutes of all their games, it seems there is no reason to play the other 57 minutes!
-Its official, the Colts are starting to scare the hell out of me!
-If there is a more complete team than the NY Giants, I have not seen them so far. It kills me to write that!
-Both the Redskins and the Bucs bore me.
-What is wrong with the Titans? The loss of Albert Haynesworth cannot be the reason for a near total collapse across the board.
-Is it possible for the Raiders to just forfeit a season? Ugly stuff.
-Second place for lost season after 4 weeks, the Buffalo Bills are just flopping right now. The Miami running game is unreal to watch (250 yards on the ground!!!)
-The Broncos are better than I thought. They may have something to say about the AFC West. Will have to watch when they play the Chargers for the first time. What can I say about the Cowboys? Those guys just cannot execute cleanly for any stretch of time. Very frustrating for their talent level to be hampered by their level of play. It HAS to be new coach time. Can Jerry Jones please call John Gruden? He stinks as an announcer and his hard edge will whip that team into shape.
-I like the 49ers in the NFC West. That team is motivated and focused. A great turnaround story and Mike Singletary gets 100% of the credit for the attitude adjustment out in the bay.
-The Steelers need to win tonight. After what I saw from Baltimore, a 2 game deficit may be too much to overcome for the division win. The Chargers are in the same boat with Denver now.
That's about it. A wonderful football Sunday. Chime in on the comments if you are bored.
Have a good night.