Open Thread: Sunday Week 12

Enjoy the games, and Go Broncos!

Poll question added: So, Broncos fans - with Denver at 8-3 and the AFCW almost locked up, who are you rooting for in today's Ravens/Chargers game? The magic number for a Denver AFCW title (combination of Broncos wins, Chargers losses) is just two, while the Broncos are battling the Ravens for playoff seeding in the AFC.

We're thinking that Broncos Country should be rooting for San Diego, as difficult as that may be. What say you?

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Crennel has had Peyton’s number Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! We've all read countless chronicles of Peyton Manning's comeback from injury, and his rehabilitation at Duke with David Cutcliffe.

But each time, there are some new nuggets to keep our attention.

The latest such column is from Sam Farmer of the LA Times, who speaks with all of the usual characters, plus the original Fat Man, in doing his research.

Manning finally comes out and tells Farmer that he simply cannot throw the ball as far as he used to, even calling his new style of play as the normally dreaded "dinking and dunking." John Fox says he appreciates that Peyton takes copious notes from Fox's meetings with the team, and that his own leadership talking points are repeated by the QB later on each week.

It's a lot of the same old stuff, but there's enough new information to make it a worthwhile read. (via Dan Pompei)

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Fat Camp: The difference between a cut block and a chop block

I read the USA Today article that Doug linked today, which amounted to an interpretation of a Peter King tweet.  Only KSK should be interpreting PK, because this reporter follows him down the path of wrong.

They mention "legal chop blocks," but there are no such things in the NFL, nor have there been any in quite a few years.  The problem is apparently confusion about what "chop block" means.

Allow me to explain.

A chop block is when a blocker is engaged with a defender up high, and a second offensive player goes low on the same defender.  There must be two blockers on one defender, and one must go high, and the other low, for it to be a chop block.  That's a 15-yard penalty on the offense.

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Thx for the turkey, Chiefs. You still suck, tho Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Poor Brady Quinn.

Dude's finally getting another crack at the Chiefs' top QB gig, four weeks after having suffered a concussion one quarter into his start against the Raiders. But at least he'll be playing behind a decent offensive line that's been around league-average in terms of allowing sacks, right?

Not so much.

Kansas City will most likely be without starting left tackle Branden Albert for tomorrow's game, in which case third-round rookie Donald Stephenson would start in his place. Ryan Lilja and Jon Asamoah are questionable, but it sounds like they'll play.

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STDL: Broncos cruising to division title, potential first-round bye

For the sixth week in a row, and riding a streak of five games during which they've scored at least 30 points and won by at least a touchdown in each, the Broncos reside at the crest of Brian Burke's efficiency rankings.

But the Denver offense has scuffled a bit in recent weeks, and this is reflected in their fall to third (from first) in offensive efficiency. However, they remain first in passing efficiency and tied for sixth while running the ball. Of course, the injury to Willis McGahee may strain that latter figure.

Their continued dominance on the defensive side of the game has the Broncos still second in efficiency (fourth versus the pass, eighth (tied) against the run), behind the opportunistic Bears.

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Rule which cost Lions may be overturned before season’s end

After Detroit debacle, NFL could change red-flag rule during season

NFL executive V.P. of football operations Ray Anderson told Mike Florio on the Dan Patrick Show that the league could review the rule that says the referee will not review a scoring play if a coach throws his challenge flag. Anderson said it’s even possible that the rule could be changed during the season, instead of waiting until after the season.

This cannot happen soon enough. The damage done to Detroit's playoff hopes and to the Broncos' #1-seed aspirations is irreversible, but better late than never.

Forget the first seed Lard

Happy Friday, Broncos fans! Any dreams of Denver stealing the AFC's top playoff seed have likely evaporated in the past five days, and in dramatic fashion.

After having survived a shootout during which Jacksonville had led by 14 points in the fourth quarter, before Mike Mularkey questionably went for it on 4th and 10 in overtime, Houston (10-1) again escaped - this time, with a 34-31 OT win over the Lions (4-7) in Detroit.

Yesterday, Kubes & Co. benefitted from an epic blown call by Walt Coleman's crew, a hotheaded brain fart by Jim Schwartz, and one of the dumbest rules on the NFL's books, to gain a free 81-yard touchdown on what should have been marked a seven-yard gain.

With Detroit up 24-14 midway through the third quarter, and the ball on the 19-yard line, Justin Forsett took a handoff and was clearly tackled at Houston's 26-yard line, but no whistle was blown. The back got up, ran the remaining 74 yards, and was awarded a touchdown.

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Adventures in sports betting

Happy Thanksgiving, friends.  Today, I’m thankful for being on vacation, which basically has amounted to two different vacations.  My girlfriend and I flew into Las Vegas Friday afternoon, stayed there through Monday morning, and then drove over to Los Angeles, which is about a 4.5-hour drive.  My brother Chris lives in LA, and he and his wife recently welcomed a new Broncos fan to the world, so we’re doing Turkey Day in SoCal.

Today, I wanted to focus on the Vegas part, because it relates to football.  Really, I want to talk about gambling.  I would say that I’m a reasonably smart guy, and I hold two bachelors degrees and just finished my MBA.  My first degree was in finance, and that’s a fairly math-centric discipline, but the math isn’t difficult.  It’s algebra-based, and it mostly revolves around probability.

From that book learnin’, one thing I know is that over a long enough time period, sports betting is a surefire loser.  The reason why that’s the case is that on straight bets, sports books get you into asymmetric bets, where what you stand to win (if you win) is less than what you stand to lose (when you lose).

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Open Thread: Thanksgiving 2012

Andy Benoit, Doug Farrar, Bucky Brooks, and Benjamin Hoffman preview the day's games; PFF's breakdowns of Houston/Detroit, Washington/Dallas, and New England/Jets; Matt Bowen checks on the All-22 tape of RG3. Enjoy the games, and your turkey!

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AFCW fans should be thankful for Clark Hunt Lard

Happy Thanksgiving, Broncos fans! A day after having given RB Steve Slaton a workout, the team auditioned former Chargers back Jacob Hester on Wednesday.

According to Mike Klis, the Broncos are likely to sign a running back this week to take the spot of Willis McGahee, which we'll translate to mean that Jeremiah Johnson won't be promoted from the practice squad.

Tracy Porter and Chris Kuper practiced fully on Wednesday, marking the first time Porter had done so in three weeks; Kuper had been no more than a limited participant since having suffered his ankle injury Week 9 at Cincinnati.

Champ Bailey got the day off and will practice today. Omar Bolden (concussion) did not practice, while Derek Wolfe (quad), Virgil Green (hamstring), and Demaryius Thomas (knee) were listed on the injury report as having been limited. Ronnie Hillman (hamstring) and Robert Ayers (groin) were listed on the report but were full participants.

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