Except for a Monday night game that no one really gives a shit about, week 13 is in the books. As per usual, there is plenty to talk about and second guess. That’s why websites like this exist!
How ‘bout them Cowboys?
A lot has been made about Jason Garrett accidentally icing his own kicker in Dallas’ 19-13 overtime loss at Arizona, but I don’t mind it. The play clock was winding down at the end of regulation and Jason didn’t want the crucial snap to be rushed. Place kicker Dan Bailey kicked it through the uprights but was then informed of the timeout, thus rendering the play irrelevant. A few moments later he missed a second attempt and the internet went bananas. When asked in the postgame if he regretted the timeout, Garrett seemed unflappable and I like that.
As a coach, all you can do is make the decision that you feel is the best at the time. Just because it doesn’t end up working out doesn’t mean it is wrong. Results oriented thinking is dangerous, and should be left up to over reactionary jackasses. Aka, the media.
Just the same, not sure why Garrett didn’t use one of his remaining two timeouts with 26 seconds left to kill the clock. What a dummy! Let’s all make fun of him.
If you were to pick out a few main themes of week 13, one of them would definitely be marquee injuries.
Matt Forte left with a knee injury, should be gone two to four weeks. 49ers all-world linebacker Patrick Willis left with a hamstring injury and did not return. Kyle Orton played QB for one snap for the Chiefs before injuring a finger on his throwing hand. Andre Johnson and Lamar Woodley also sustained injuries.
A lot of people are asking, “is the lockout to blame?” and that just seems like a completely irrelevant question to me. If the answer is yes, what exactly does that mean? Are the suits going to go back in time and negotiate better? Either way, these guys are injured and it is up to the teams and the players themselves to get back on the field as soon as possible. The lockout talk would have more bearing if it was something that was on the verge of happening again, but it’s not.
After the Packers won the Super Bowl last year with several key players on IR there isn’t going to be a lot of sympathy for a team in a similar situation that can’t get the job done.
Speaking of the Packers…
If you watch First Take on ESPN2 you know that Skip Bayless has been going out of his way to find something to criticize about Aaron Rodgers for much of the season. His most consistent criticism is that Rodgers hasn’t had to lead a big drive in the clutch this season. This is, of course, a completely ridiculous statement as Aaron’s excellent play has insured that Green Bay hasn’t been trailing in the fourth quarter. Just the same, the 2011 MVP (yeah, I’m already giving him the award) took the ball with 58 seconds left in a tie game and effortlessly moved the defending champs into field goal range with three pinpoint passes to win the game.
Even giving Skip’s position the time of day this article seems dirty as so much of what he says is just for a reaction, but I’m still looking forward to tomorrow morning when he tries to find a way to irrationally support his previous claims. If you want a good example of his stubbornness he defended an interception by Eagles QB Vince Young, one of his favorite players, by saying that the Seahawks jerseys were too close in color to the turf and Vince didn’t have a chance to see the defender.
This is just another reminder that instead of watching people talk about sports on TV, you are probably better off punching yourself in the face until you are unconscious. Just more of my own advice that I’ll never take, as I love the absurdity of it all.
You didn’t think I was going to get through this without talking about Timmy did you?
For weeks I have heard the question, “how do you stop Tim Tebow?” and this confused me as I thought teams already were. The Broncos were scoring 17 points or so each week and it seemed pretty obvious that without the defense that team was in a lot of trouble. Think about it, if most offenses were putting up those kind of numbers we would label the quarterback a liability or slap the kiss of death “game manager” term on them. But yesterday the former Heisman trophy winner looked impressive and efficient in the Broncos 35-32 comeback victory, thus guaranteeing that the Tebow circus will continue indefinitely. A few weeks ago this would have driven me nuts, but I’m really starting to enjoy it. More and more analysts are buying in, which will make his inevitable failure all the more comical! I will say this though; it was the first week where I thought that it was actually possible that Tebow might have a future in the league, but he still only threw 15 passes. For now I’m still in the unconvinced camp.
Blah blah blah, the previous paragraph is just an excuse to link to this. All he does is win!
-Another week, another penalty filled Detroit Lions meltdown. Jim Schwartz needs to do something fast before this thing spins completely out of control. I hate blaming Schwartz for stuff like this, but it appears that the team has taken on the personality of their head coach. And that personality seems to be completely fucking insane.
-Tampa’s coach Raheem Morris also had to deal with some silly penalties. He wasn’t happy either, especially with second year DT Brian Price who he sent to the locker room after a costly personal foul. While overall I’ve not been as impressed with Morris as some in the league, I really like this move. Tolerating these hot headed and selfish plays after the whistle has to stop.
-I understand that the Bears lost Matt Forte, their best offensive player, on Sunday. But still, there is no excuse for only putting up 3 points. Whether it is fair or not (and I think it is) the blame is going to fall squarely on the shoulder of Caleb Hanie. The calls for McNabb are going to get louder and louder, and I think we’ll see Donovan play for his home town team sooner than later. No word yet on whether or not the Bears are going to sign a second QB to run the two minute offense.
-Matt Ryan seems like a swell guy, but he just isn’t playing that well. It is obvious by their draft day decision to trade up for Julio Jones that the Falcons wanted to air it out a bit more this season, but Ryan’s struggles have made them dial it back again. The Falcons signal caller is young enough that it is hard to be too critical, but he’s been in the league long enough where it’s hard to explain his regression. Sunday was a perfect example. He was 20 for 47 with one touchdown and two interceptions in a very winnable game.
-The Colts hung with the Patriots for a while, but still continued their march towards a winless season. Members of the ’72 Dolphins get riled up when a team approaches perfection, which makes me wonder how the 2008 Lions feel about this one. Someone track down QB Dan Orlovsky and ask him about it. Oh wait, he’s on the Colts too!
Enjoy Monday Night Football everyone. Or at least try to.