NFL WEEK 7: RECAP

Image result for images of lions, tigers and bearsImage result for images of lions, tigers and bears

Some of the games from last week knocked the socks off people and had folks wondering, “just what is happening right now”? Well, it’s football and on any given Sunday a game can be won or lost. Of the undefeated team, analysts are still shocked that the Panthers have not lost a game.  Clearly, Cam is carrying this team because there are not really any well known players on the team.  Of the undefeated teams, the Patriots have the easiest schedule, which NO ONE is willing to say but me. Now on to the recap.

San Francisco vs. Seahawks: You all know that I am a diehard 49er fan and will always root for them. After Kap played so well the week before, my hope was that the momentum would carry into this game but it was not to be. Kap has a monkey on his back when it comes to the Seahawks and he has to figure out a way to win, not only against the Seahawks but other teams. He has the talent and he can do it but I have said it before and I will say it again, he should NEVER have listened to people telling him to stay in the pocket and he sure as hell had no business working out with Kurt Warner last summer. If he was going to listen to anyone, it should have been Joe Montana, who said just be Kap.  Also, the offensive line just SUCKS big time.

Bills vs. Jaguars: The Jaguars won, big deal.

Buccaneers vs. Redskins: The Redskins came back and won. I’m sure Jay Gruden was jumping up and down with glee but let’s be serious they played a team with a lot of defensive issues, a QB that’s new to the League and they only won by three points so nothing to shout about there.

Falcons vs. Titans: Although the Falcons won it was only by three points, which gives me pause as to how far they can really go.

Saints vs. Colts: The Saints pulled out a win and the analysts made a big hoopla about the “veteran” Drew Brees taking on the “youngster” Andrew Luck. All I have to say is Andrew Luck is playing hurt and he should stop playing and take the time to heal. When things are going bad these so-called football analysts will blame every loss on him notwithstanding the fact that he hasn’t healed completely.   Also, the management and the coach are having some issues and that trickles down to the team. Ask the 49ers? Drew Brees was a none factor.

Vikings vs. Lions: The Vikings are doing well after their initial loss against the 49ers. After this loss the Lions fired their offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi but will that put an end to their woes? Hell yes, the Lions hired him because he is the grandson of Vince Lombardi.  This guy had no real NFL experience as an OL coach. He was the QB coach for the Saints from 2009 to 2013, if that’s true. They should be at the bottom of the heap for being stupid, IDIOTS!!!

Steelers vs. Chiefs: No Big Ben and no Mike Vick, enough said.

Browns vs. Rams: The Browns will continue to lose if they don’t let Johnny Manziel become the quarterback. Their season is already in the toilet, LET THE BOY PLAY!!!

Texans vs. Dolphins: Charley Casserly left this team in a mess. By the time he was told to quit or be fired the damage had been done. I said at the beginning of the season they should never have switched Brian Hoyer out for Ryan Mallet because he is not a team player. My point was proven when he missed the flight to the game. At least Brian is back in as the starter. Just let Hoyer play. By the way, the Dolphins are not real.

Jets vs. Patriots: The Jets tried but they’re just not strong enough to beat the Patriots. The Patriots are scumbags from way back but Gronk is a big man and hard to take down.

Raiders vs. Chargers: The score does not reflect how bad the Raiders beat the Chargers. That was the one game that made everybody go, WOW!!! Philip Rivers did not have any game last Sunday and it proves that things don’t always go your way in a game no matter how good you are.

Cowboys vs. Giants: This game just sucked. The Cowboys are playing with 3rd string players so you can’t get much production out of that situation.

Eagles vs. Panthers: The team that should be given the most accolades at this time is the Panthers. Cam is carrying this team on his back and should be commended for it. There is still a lot of football to be played but all I can say to Cam is keep doing your thing.

Ravens vs. Cardinals: No surprise here. The Ravens have been beset by injuries and they have a lot of new players that need time together.

 

 

1RAREGRL

Jay Gruden: Destroyer of Quarterbacks

Image result for images of killer clownsImage result for images of jay gruden

I have not made it a secret that I’m not a fan of the manner in which Jay Gruden treated RG3. It was unfair and unprofessional. I don’t believe he has the ability to assess or coach any quarterback in the NFL and that is evident by Andy Dalton’s lack of success in Cincinnati during Gruden’s tenure there as the offensive coordinator. Gruden was the offensive for the Bengals from 2011 through 2014 and during that time, sports analysts and the like were calling for Dalton to be released as the quarterback of the team. The fans were booing Dalton before the 2015 season started and articles were being written about how he is not the QB for the team.

The 2015 season starts, Gruden is gone and Dalton is thriving. That speaks volumes to me. Dalton was drafted 35th in the second round in the 2011 draft by the Bengals. Since drafting Dalton, the Bengals have had success during the season but they have not been able to make it out of the post season in the last four years. The team has not lost a game so far this season and Dalton is playing with confidence and leading his team to victory. My take on this is that Jay Gruden stymied Dalton because he has no clue on how to coach a team and certainly no knowledge of how to work with a quarterback. Dalton’s 2015 passing completion percentage is already better than his percentages for 2011 – 2015.

Now some people may say that Dalton has matured and that’s what has improved his play and that could play a part in it. However, I say take a look at what Gruden did to RG3 and what he’s doing to Cousins. Gruden has no business coaching a Pop Warner team and certainly not an NFL team. His treatment of RG3 was unacceptable and Snyder should never have allowed it. Gruden made comments about RG3 such as, “didn’t take a certain number of steps before passing the ball” etc. those are clown comments and just plain stupid. Now that Cousins is not having any success, it’s the wind, him, the team and a plethora of factors causing Cousins to underperform. Actually, Gruden is the reason Cousins and any other quarterback he comes in contact with has difficulty.

Instead of analyst jumping on the “fire/trade” the quarterback bandwagon, take a look at who the QB is working with and analyze what is really going on. I don’t have a problem with Cousins. He has every right to work hard to be the QB of the team. My problem is with Gruden and his lack of coaching skills. But for his brother Gruden would not be where he is in the NFL. It is a joke that he’s been hired as the head coach of the Redskins. He was not honest with Snyder when he interviewed for the job. He said that he could work with RG3 and the fact of the matter is that he had no intention of working with RG3. His plan was to replace him and now his incompetence is showing.

 

“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when at first we practice to deceive.” — The line belongs to Sir Walter Scott, from his 1808 poem Marmion.

Let’s see how Snyder handles Gruden after his dismal season.

 

1RAREGRL

Week 6: NFL RECAP — Winners and Losers

Image result for images of cam newtonImage result for nfl images

Recap of Week 6: Okay, I didn’t to do a recap of week 5 because I chose to write about the firing of the Dolphins head coach after the team lost game 4. As a word of caution to Dolphins fans, don’t get too excited about the win last week and the “tight end” coach, that decision will more likely than not go up in flames as well. Okay, here are my thoughts on the Week 6 games:

Falcons vs. Saints: The Falcons just can’t seem to beat the Saints.  Although the Falcons are the better team.

Redskins vs. Jets: By gosh the wind and everyone on the team caused Kirk Cousins to throw interceptions according to the unskilled Jay Gruden. This guy is a complete moron and only has a head coaching job because of his brother. I don’t want the Redskins to EVER win another game. Jay Gruden almost destroyed Andy Dalton’s career as a QB while he was at Cincinnati.  He destroyed RG3 and if Snyder does not get rid of him he will destroy Cousins. The man DOES NOT KNOW FOOTBALL!!!

Cardinals vs. Steelers: Vick went down and that young boy came in and got the job done. What I liked about the win the most was the camaraderie shown by the entire team and that includes Vick and Big Ben. The Steelers organization is a class act.

Chiefs vs. Vikings: I am really disappointed in the Chiefs this season. I thought they were going to be one of teams to watch.  Whoever said the 49ers should have kept Alex Smith, is an idiot.  He did not throw a touchdown to a receiver the entire 2014 season and it appears that he’s headed in the same direction this season. You all know, I will fight for the player all day long but Alex Smith needs to spend some time with Kurt Warner because Kap should never have wasted his time with him.

Bengals vs. Bills: Okay, the Bills and Rex Ryan are a joke. Rex Ryan is Rex Ryan no matter how much smack he talks. The man is not a good head coach. As for the Bengals, it is my prediction that they will beat the Patriots in the playoffs and go to the Super Bowl. By the way, since the Bengals got rid of Jay Gruden, Andy Dalton has flourished in his QB role.  Word to the wise.

Bears vs. Lions: Honestly, I feel sorry for Jay Cutler.  As far as these two teams go, they just need to go back to the drawing board.

Broncos vs. Browns: Peyton doesn’t need to 25 year old Peyton, all that matters is that he gets’ the job done when he has to. As for the Browns, they want win until they take a chance on Johnny Manziel. Don’t talk to me about the situation with his girlfriend. That situation occurred in his car, which was private.

Texans vs. Jaguars: The head coach wised up and gave the starting position back to Brian Hoyer. Who are the Jaguars again?

Dolphins vs. Titans: Really?

Panthers vs. Seahawks: Cam went into Seattle with the 12the man hoovering and knock that man right back in his seat. The Legion of Boom got confused on defense and blamed everyone for their failure on the miscue but themselves. How about take responsibility for your mistakes guys? It happens. By the way, Cam does not have any real players on his team and he’s getting the job done.

Chargers vs. Greenbay: Expected.

Ravens vs. 49ers: If the 49ers coaching staff listens to Joe Montana and allow Kap to be Kap the offense will surge and they will win games. However, that OL must continue to gel and they need stronger, taller and faster safeties because they are allowing too many points on defense. Bowman can’t do it all. Also, they have got to get a pass rush going. That said, Kap did his thing and he did it well.

Patriots vs. Colts: Pagano gave the game to Patriots with the trick play that was not a trick play. Just play football against the Patriots, people please. Trick plays are Belicheat’s specialty, not the rest of the League.  First Pete Carroll and now Pagano, what’s up?

Giants vs. Eagles: Worst game of the week.

That’s my two cents.

 

1RAREGRL

Miami Dolphins: What’s Really Going On?

Image result for images of dolphinsImage result for images of confusion

Football season is always filled with surprises but the biggest surprise this season came when the Dolphins management fired Coach Joe Philbin after the third loss of the 2015 season and hired the tight ends coach as the interim coach. Well, good luck winning any more games.

Coach Philbin was hired as the head coach in 2012 and his record is 24 wins and 28 loses. By the way, we can’t forget that the team did have that bullying problem to come to light under his leadership. That said, it didn’t start with him so he can’t be blamed for that.

Come now, the Dolphins management needs to come to terms with the fact that they have not had a good team since Coach Shula retired in 1995 and they are arguably in the weakest division in the League. Coach Philbin was hired by the Green Bay Packers in 2003 and he remained with them until he was hired as the head coach of the Dolphins. Is it the ghost of Shula’s past that’s preventing the team from returning to its glory days? No, management like a lot of the NFL teams are looking for instant results and that’s not going to happen. The team has to be willing to hire a coach and give him the opportunity to build a team. I’m not saying that Coach Philbin was the right person because his record speaks for itself but the tight ends coach becomes the interim head coach?  That leaves me shaking my head.

Is the expectation that he will bring something to the table Coach Philbin didn’t have? I understand they are tired of losing but was firing the coach and hiring the tight ends coach the answer? Should they have stayed the course and given him an opportunity to turn the team around? After all, the team has been hapless forever. According to the interim coach, he has to change the culture so I suppose changing the culture will put them on a winning path, yea right!!! What’s the culture he’s referring to? Is it the culture of bullying or have the players grown accustomed to losing?

Whatever the culture is, at the end of the day, football is hard and he needs to come with plays that will help the team win. Also, he has to be able to motivate the players and get them to believe in what he’s doing. I’m not sure talking about changing the culture is the answer but time will tell.

 

1RAREGRL

 

Week 4: NFL Recap — Winners and Losers

Image result for images of nfl teams winning and losingImage result for images of winners and losers

I am not going to spend a lot of time recapping the games from last week but there are a few points that need to be highlighted.

Ravens vs. Steelers = Ravens won. Snoop Dog summed up what the problem was with that game. I can’t write what he said so you will need to go on-line and view his Instagram video. At the end of day, the kicker lost the game and he has been released by the team. Michael Vick played well. Vick really should be a starter somewhere.

Jaguars vs. Colts = Colts won but that is a given. The Jaguars need a lot of help. This team has not really been competitive since coming into the League.

Packers vs. 49ers = Packers won. You all know the Niners are my team. In previous post starting last year, I wrote about what would happen to the team once Coach Harbaugh was fired and my worst nightmare is coming true. Kap has to find that fire inside and come out swinging like his life depends on it or shall we say his job. He is becoming the new whipping stick now that the media has reduced RG3 to the sideline. I will say this, I have a lot of respect for Coach Jimmy T. and Geep because they are not bowing to the pressure of the media. They just need keep doing what they are doing and the team will gel.  It will take time but they have got to find their offensive game. The Niners defense did an excellent job but its hit and miss. Since I am a die hard, the Niners will start to turn around.

Rams vs. Cardinals = Rams won. This was the biggest surprise of the day. The week the Cardinals beat the Niners down, one of the defensive players said the Niners offense was easy to read. Since they lost the following week, I guess that means their offense was easy to read as well, right?

Cowboys vs. Saints = Saints won. This was a nail biter and I picked the Cowboys to win. However, the Saints have the tendency to find a way to win in the Dome. As for the Cowboys, Weeden did a phenomenal job.

Panthers vs. Buccaneers = Panthers won. This was not a surprise but I must say Cam is doing his thing and the Panthers are 4 and 0.

Chiefs vs. Bengals = Bengals won. Although I am not surprised that the Bengals won, I am surprised that the Chiefs are struggling so early in the season. Its possible things will improve for them.

Lions vs. Seahawks = Seahawks won. No surprise there. However, all of the talk was about the ball that was batted out of bounds by the Seahawks player in the end zone. All I have to say about that is it’s a stupid rule and the League needs to get rid of the rule.

Texans vs. Falcons = Falcons won. The Falcons are doing really well but can they sustain it? Only time will tell.

Raiders vs. Bears = Bears won. Hmph

Jets vs. Dolphins = Jets won. Who really cares? This division is so weak.

Giants vs. Bills = Giants won. These two teams are hit and miss. That said, Rex Ryan has been in the League since 1994 in various coaching positions and I don’t think “head coach” is the job for him.

Eagles vs. Redskins = Redskins won. This win makes my skin crawl.

Browns vs. Chargers = Browns won. Why and how? This one is a surprise but since the game was so close all I can say is that’s the game. That said, I still believe Johnny Manziel should be starting.

Broncos vs. Vikings = Broncos won. I am surprised at how close the game was.

 

1RAREGRL

Cleveland Browns are Doing Johnny Manziel a Disservice

Image result for images of johnny manzielImage result for images of mike pettine

Mike Pettine is the head coach of the Cleveland Browns.  It is interesting that he rose to this position via being a high school coach in Pennsylvania for eight (8) years.  Four of the years he spent as the assistant coach to his father.  He got his big break in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens as an assistant coach from 2002 – 2003.  His rise to head coach is as follows:

2004 Baltimore Ravens — (Assistant Defensive Line Coach)

2005–2008 Baltimore Ravens — (Outside Linebackers Coach)

2009–2012 New York Jets — (Defensive Coordinator)

2013 Buffalo Bills — (Defensive Coordinator)

2014–present Cleveland Browns — (Head Coach)

I am all for organizations hiring coaches that are not part of the typical NFL coaching carousel. However, based on his coaching resume, I don’t think Coach Pettine has the experience needed to nurture talent or build a winning organization.  His time spent with the Ravens is probably the most beneficial NFL experience he gained.  The Browns traded Brian Hoyer so one would think they would use this time to focus on Johnny Manziel so that he can grow into an NFL QB.  Why did they bother to draft him if the plan was to just sit him on the bench?

Give the kid a chance.  He can’t do any worse than Josh McCown, who is 36 years old and should be the backup QB.   Why is Coach Pettine starting a backup over Manziel?  These NFL teams continue to bow to the pressure of the media.  All of these NFL teams need to take a page out of Jerry Jones playbook and ignore what the media has to say about the team’s QB.  No matter how many times the media cried get rid of Tony Romo, Jerry Jones stood by his QB.

Coach Pettine and the Browns organization need to start Manziel and let him hone his skills.  What is the big deal?  The team has always been bad.  Use this season to work with Manziel so that he starts building a rapport with his teammates.   Josh McCown is not going to get the team to the playoffs so this is the time to build the team around Manziel.  McCown has played on nine (9) different NFL teams and one UFL team, enough already.

In light of the fact that Coach Pettine was given the opportunity of a lifetime, he needs to return the favor and start Manziel.

 

1RAREGRL

The Patriots Have One of the Easiest Schedule in the League, Why?

Image result for images of nfl football players in disbeliefImage result for images of nfl football players in disbelief

SHAME ON THE LEAGUE!!!!

As I watched the football games today, I was shocked to see New England playing Jacksonville in New England.  I thought that was absolutely absurd.  New England won the Super Bowl last year and if my memory serves me correctly, the rule in the NFL is that the Super Bowl winning team will be given a more competitive schedule the following season. When I saw that New England was playing Jacksonville in New England it gave me pause and I decided to look at New England’s schedule.

Well low and below, New England has one of the easiest schedules in the League setting them up to return to the Super Bowl.  Set forth below is New England’s schedule for the remainder of the season:

October 11 – Dallas in Dallas but Romo and Dez are out so no competition there.

October 18 – Indianapolis in Indianapolis

October 25 – New York Jets in New England

October 29 – Miami in New England

November 8 – Washington in New England

November 15 – New York Giants in New York

November 23 – Buffalo Bills in New York

November 29 – Denver in Denver

December 6 – Philadelphia in New England

December 13 – Houston in Houston

December 20 – Tennessee in New England

December 27 – New York Jets in New York

January 3 – Miami in Miami

Note:  The games in bold are conference game.

New England has a bye next week, why?  They just played Jacksonville in New England.  Jacksonville has never been a competitive team so there was no reason to schedule New England to play them and certainly not in New England.   Was the bye planned so they will be fresh to play Dallas in Dallas?  Dallas will be returning from having played the Saints in New Orleans.  New Orleans has the tendency to play well at home.  By the way, Dallas just played Atlanta and they have Seattle and Green Bay coming up.

Why is New England playing the Broncos again?  They played the Broncos last year.  They are not in the same division so why play back-to-back games.  Yes, we all know that the League “powers that be” like the Brady and Manning matchup, so what?  Enough of that nonsense.  Fans would rather see competitive games.

As you can see, Seattle, Green Bay, Kansas City, Arizona, Atlanta, Detroit and Cincinnati are missing from the Patriots schedule.  How is this fair to the rest of the teams in the League?  The Patriots are in the AFC East, which consist of the Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins and the New York Jets so the Patriots should win their division every year.  Clearly, the relationship between Kraft and Goodell is self-serving and not beneficial to the rest of the teams in the League.  It is time for the owners to wise up and see what’s happening.

This leaves me with a Cookie moment:

Image result for images of taraji p henson being sassy

1RAREGRL

 

NFL Football Week 2 Recap

Image result for nfl team imagesImage result for nfl team images

Everybody calm down this is just week two and there is still a lot more football to be played so STOP saying who is going to win the Super Bowl, just yet.  The cream still had not risen to the top and it will take a minute before that happens.  That said, this is my take on the games from week two.

Denver v. Kansas City = Denver won.  If the late fumble had not occurred the Chiefs may have been able to come back in overtime and win the game but we will never know.  The hand off by Alex Smith was poorly done, which caused the fumble. These two teams are pretty evenly matched in terms of offense and defense.  Clearly, there was a breakdown in the Kansas City offense.

New England v. Buffalo = New England won.  Most people were probably rooting for the Bills to beat the Patriots but it didn’t happen.  The game was sad to watch it wasn’t even close.  Rex Ryan should have just kept his mouth closed and focused on trying to coach his team to win the game.  Rex Ryan has been coaching in the NFL since 1994 and he’s NEVER won any big games so why do NFL teams continue to hire him?

Houston v. Carolina Panthers = Carolina won.  The Texans benched Brian Hoyer and started Ryan Mallett, who has a bad attitude by the way.  Hoyer was benched because he had two turnovers in game one, really? This is the problem with these NFL coaches.  They don’t have the ability to nuture talent.  Mallett was started over Hoyer and had an interception as did Hoyer.  Mallett had 71 attempts and only had 35 completions, really?  Was he throwing the ball just for the sake of throwing it.  That does not show good judgment to me.  I’m surprised he only had one interception but keep on with that nonsense and he will have plenty of interceptions.  I don’t think he was the best choice over Hoyer but all we can do is wait and see.

Arizona v. Chicago = Arizona won.  No surprise there.

San Diego v. Cincinnati = Cincinnati won.  No surprise there because Cincinnati has a very good defense and offense.  The Bengals have the offensive and defensive players with the height, weight and speed to beat the Patriots.  This is the team to watch for.  Marvin Lewis has the talent but he has got to figure out a way to win in the post season.  What’s missing from Cincinnati’s equation is a running back.  If they can fill this role, they can win the entire thing.

Tennessee v. Cleveland = Cleveland won.  This was an interesting game and a toss up.  That said, Johnny Manziel did quiet some of the critics.  Give the young man a chance and shut up.

Detroit v. Minnesota = Minnesota won.  What is going on with Detroit?  The team has a good defensive unit or so I thought.

Tampa Bay v. New Orleans = Tampa Bay won.  Let’s just call a spade a spade, New Orleans does not play well on the road and without Jimmy Graham they are not going to do well this season.  That was a bad decision by management.

Atlanta v. New York Giants = Atlanta won.  What needs to happen with the Giants is Eli needs to be allowed to be Eli and they will win.  I know a lot of people don’t believe that statements but it’s true.  Let him just play ball.  He was won two Super Bowls so just allow him to be himself and he will get the job done.

San Francisco v. Pittsburgh = Pittsburgh won.  The 49ers have some challenges with the OL.  I said last week that Kap needed to start off passing the ball in order for the team to have a chance.  Instead the coaching staff continued to try and establish a running game which was STUPID.  A coach is supposed to have instinct about the opposing team.  I knew before the game that Pittsburgh would plug the hole and stop the run.  Hence, they should have started off passing and allowing Kap to run, UGH!!!  What happened to the defense?  They disappeared after week one but they will be back, you can count on it.

St. Louis v. Washington = Washington won.  The Rams defense was not pressuring the Redskins QB so don’t know what was going on with the pass rush for the Rams.  This game is perplexing because Washington is not good at all and should not have won the game.

Miami v. Jacksonville = Jacksonville won.  This is one that just makes you go hummm.

Baltimore v. Oakland = Oakland won.  Baltimore is suffering from a lot of injuries and it’s showing.  Until the team is healthy it will be hard for them to win.

Dallas v. Philadelphia = Dallas won.  This and every Philly loss rest on the shoulders of Chip Kelly.  He wanted control of the team and he got it.  Subsequently, he tore the team apart and this has left people scratching their heads.  Why did he trade Nick Foles for the unproven Sam Bradford?  Why aren’t they using DeMarco Murray?  Why did he let Tim Tebow go?  Sam Bradford has not played a down since his first couple of games coming into the league and getting his big contract.  He has been injured the entire time.  Chip Kelly let Michael Vick go, who is really the only person that can run Chip’s offense so that was another bad decision.

Seattle v. Green Bay = Green Bay.  This was just a dogfight and was expected. It was a great game but Seattle without Kam Chancellor will have problems.

New York Jets v. Indianapolis Colts = Jets won.  I will say the Jets winning was a surprise but the Colts internal problems are being played out on the field.  If management and Coach Pagano don’t settle their differences look for the Colts not to do well.  People have to realize that tension between management and the Coach is a distraction for the entire team.

1RAREGRL

 

 

 

Pittsburgh–The Ghosts of Steelers Defensive Past: Where Do They Go From Here?

Image result for images of an steel curtainImage result for images of an steel curtain

I want people to remember that football season just started and the first game won or lost does not signify that a team is going to end up at the bottom of the barrel or win the Super Bowl. That said, it does give a look into what is going on with a team and where minor tweaks need to be made or big gaping holes need to be filled.

On that note, this blog is about the gaping hole that is the Pittsburg Steelers defense. In their opening game against the Patriots, the Steelers offense sputtered initially but the defense was practically non-existent. Notwithstanding the fact that, Mike Tomlin’s headset was not working, there are some glaring problems with the defense. Was the non-working headset another ploy by the Patriots to cheat? I don’t put anything past that group of cheating scoundrels but I digress.

Defensive Breakdown: Gone are the days of the Steeler “Steel Curtain” defense. The Steeler defense was being manhandled by the Patriots. The defensive back that stood up on the field looking into the sky when the Steeler defense caused the Patriots to fumble at the goal line was mind boggling. Had he been paying attention, he would have made an attempt to grab the ball and prevent the Patriots from recovering their own fumble and scoring. Instead he appeared to be completely confused about what he was supposed to be doing.

How hard is it to know that Tom Brady is going to throw the ball to Gronkowski? That is not hard, it’s the obvious. Why wasn’t someone assigned to Gronkowski the entire game? Gronkowski was all over the field catching passes and Pittsburgh defensive backs were ineffective. What’s up with the Pittsburgh safeties? They appeared to be in fear of Gronkowski and allowed him to catch 3 touchdowns, which is ridiculous. The Pittsburgh defense is a poor representation of what it has been in the past. I’m not saying that Pittsburgh’s management should not have allowed Dick LeBeau to resign in January it was time for him to go. LeBeau is 78 years old and the League needs younger coaches.

However, is Keith Butler the right person for the role? He has been with Pittsburg for the last 12 years under the direction of Dick LeBeau so what is he bringing to the table? If the defense does not improve, he is not the right person and should not have been promoted. I found myself shaking my head and asking the question, what is happening right now? Reading Brady’s body language and figuring out that he’s going to throw to either Gronkowski or Edelman is a no brainer so why didn’t they figure that out? However, Gronkowski is 6’6’’ and there is no one in Pittsburgh’s secondary over 6’1’’. That is a BIG problem and although on paper they have speed it was of no value against a big body like Gronkowski. Therefore, Butler has to solve this matter by using the speed of the secondary to make more picks and breakup passes.

The Steelers must improve their pass rush in order to be competitive.

Offensive Breakdown: When the offense took the field initially the OL was allowing the Patriots defense too much access to Ben. Eventually, they were able to tighten up and started blocking, which allowed Ben to get to work. There was a touchdown called back because the ref thought the receiver stepped out of bounds. I disagree with the call but it is what it is. When you compare the stats between Shady Brady and Big Ben, Ben has better stats with the exception of Brady’s three (3) touchdowns.

Clearly, if Pittsburg had a better defensive unit they would have won the game. Set forth below are the stats for Big Ben and Shady Brady:

PITTSBURGH STEELERS
Passing Cmp Att Yds TDs
B. Roethlisberger 26 38 351 1
Rushing Car Yds Avg TDs
De. Williams 21 127 6 0
W. Johnson 4 7 1.8 1
Receiving Rec Yds Avg TDs
A. Brown 9 133 14.8 1
H. Miller 8 84 10.5 0
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
Passing Cmp Att Yds TDs
T. Brady 25 32 288 4
Rushing Car Yds Avg TDs
D. Lewis 15 69 4.6 0
J. Edelman 1 9 9 0
Receiving Rec Yds Avg TDs
J. Edelman 11 97 8.8 0
R. Gronkowski 5 94 18.8 3

1RAREGRL

49ers vs. Texans Preseason Game: What’s Missing?

As all you know, I am a diehard 49ers fan. However, I am a realist and not delusional about what happened to the team during the off season after the firing of Coach Harbaugh. I love the above photo of Kap, Vernon and Torrey because it symbolizes all that the team can be offensively. I watched the preseason game against the Texans and was not happy about the loss. However, I realize we can’t put a lot of stock into one preseason game because it’s part of the elimination process. That said, preseason games can be a precursor to what might transpire during the season.

Based on what happened during the off season, here is my analysis of what the team needs in order to make it back to the Super Bowl.

Offense:

Kap has great offensive weapons with Vernon Davis, Anquan Boldin, Torrey Smith and Reggie Bush. Torrey Smith brings the speed that has not been a significant factor for the 49er offense because the team typically played “smash mouth” football. Frank Gore in the backfield epitomized the smash mouth football running game but he’s no longer there. Reggie Bush is not a smash mouth running back but he has the speed to break through the holes in a defense and can be counted on to get yardage. I am confident that he will be an asset to Special Teams, which was subpar even under Coach Harbaugh. Additionally, I think Carlos Hyde will be a significant improvement to Special Teams. Kap definitely has the arm strength and it’s a good that Coach Jimmy T is allowing him to call his own plays because it will help him read the defenses as well as confuse them, which is the most critical part of this process.  Also, since this is a new offense it makes more sense for Kap to call his own plays.

On a side note, the 49ers should go out and get Ray Rice.  The team needs a smash mouth, north/south running back.

Offensive Line:

Based on the preseason game against the Texans, it was blatantly clear that the team has to build up the offensive line to protect Kap and create opportunities for the running backs. There were TOO MANY instances where the Texans defense was pushing the 49er offensive line around like ragdolls. Additionally, the offensive line for the 49ers must have the ability to read the opposing defense and create holes for the running backs to run through.

Flashback: The offensive line that protected Joe Montana is what the 49ers need to protect Kap. There was no way back in the day that an opposing team would have gotten to Joe Montana.

Second Flashback: Roger Craig and Ricky Watters were awesome because of the holes created by the 49er offensive line.

The 49ers offensive line has to get back to the “old” hard smash mouth football.

Defense:

There are four areas of improvement needed by the 49ers on defense and they are as follows:

  1. The 49ers need good defensive linemen. Justin Smith is a very good defensive lineman and what the team needs but he has endured some off the field issues. By the way, this is an opportunity for the 49er management to step up and help this young man get back to being the exception player he is because they need his leadership on the field. Without a strong defensive lineman, the team will struggle. Stop allowing the popular opinion to manage the team. Figure out what it takes to help him and do it so that the defensive line can be what it needs to be. Let’s not forget that the firing of Aldon Smith was detrimental to the pass rush of the team. If that hole is not plugged they are going to lose a lot of games. It doesn’t matter how many points the offense scores if the defense can’t prevent the other team from scoring.  The 49er management failed Aldon Smith, let’s see how they handle Justin Smith.
  2. The 49ers also need help with defensive corners. The opposition will continue to breakdown the 49er defense if the team does get some strong, tall and quick defensive corners.
  3. OMG, the 49ers have got to plug the gaping hole left by Patrick Willis. That middle linebacker position is critical to the success of the team. Michael Wilhoite is a good middle linebacker but he lacks speed.
  4. Eric Reid and Antoine Bethea are good safety’s but too short. They have the speed but they lack the weight and height needed to defend against tall, strong receivers. Therefore, it’s critical to improve the linebacker position because it will make it easier for the safety’s and corners to do their job defensively.

Hopefully, there are players in the group of rookies they’ve drafted that can rise to the occasion.

By the way, the team can’t depend on the kicker to keep them in the game with three point plays. The team has to score and prevent the other team from scoring.

Trent Baalke, you were a scout, why haven’t you been able to see what’s needed? You’re probably too busy trying to be the coach. Since Jed York does not understand the x’s and o’s, enough said, right?

If the team does not do well this season, sports analysts and 49er management don’t vilify Kap because the “powers that be” failed to do their job.

 

1RAREGRL