The Daily Lard 1-23-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Two hard-fought, physical games ended with special teams gaffes last night, first the Patriots surviving a last-minute drive by the Ravens after Billy Cundiff missed a 32-yard FG which would have sent the 23-20 game into overtime. Only moments prior, Ravens WR Lee Evans had a potential game-winning TD catch knocked out of his mitts; he actually had the ball with both feet on the ground, but Sterling Moore knocked it away at what was probably the last possible instant before the play would have been ruled a catch.

New England's opponent in the Super Bowl will be the Giants, who defeated the Niners 20-17 in overtime after being given the ball on the 49er 22-yard line when Kyle Williams fumbled a punt return for the second time in the game.

It will be the first Super Bowl rematch since the Cowboys pummelled the Bills in Supes 28 and 29, and the two teams got there in much the same manner as when the 10-6 Giants took down the 16-0 Patriots four years ago. These overdog Patriots won 13 games and took home-field advantage, while the Giants again overcame a sluggish start to their season and rumors of Tom Coughlin being on the hot seat before taking down both of the NFC's top seeds. However, this time the Pats open as three-point favorites instead of the 12-point line which preceded SB 42.

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Open Thread - Championship Sunday

Enjoy the games, everyone!

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Celebrating the IAOFM community

In the Deadspin column TJ cited the other day, Drew Magary called out Scott Pioli and Josh McDaniels for ruining the "Patriots Way" by their own actions. It’s true that neither Pioli nor McDaniels have found the nearly instant success that marked the rise of the New England Patriots, and this has been true of others who achieved well with Belichick too, although Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff has been successful away from him.

That fact led to a spirited (and polite) discussion here of how people relate to Belichick and the NE success. It ranged from a stated personal hatred of Belichick and a perception of him as a failed coach and a less than brilliant man who has gotten lucky to the possibility that he’s very talented. The fact that Belichick hasn’t won a Super Bowl in several years was brought up, and the fact that BB "got lucky" on Tom Brady and the possibility that he has ridden Brady’s coat tails was also mentioned. There were also folks who defended him, in various degrees. The discussion ranged the full gamut on how people feel about Belichick. It was a good thread, not that long, but with lots of ideas and perspectives.

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The Daily Lard 1-22-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his column today, Woody Paige revisits his relationship with the late ex-owner of the Broncos, Edgar Kaiser Jr. It's an interesting read, especially when noting how the NFL has changed in the past thirty years, from what sounds like a whimsical hobby of billionaires to the serious moneymaker it is today. As Kaiser told Paige, his purchase of the franchise from the Phipps family was completed "in a matter of hours," and then-Colts owner Robert Irsay apparently chose Denver as John Elway's trade destination because Irsay had befriended the young Broncos owner.

Franchises swapping hands and moving cities on flip decisions, owners agreeing to trade star players and directing their GMs to do so; sure, it all seems quite haphazard in retrospect - but will the game ever be as fun as it was back then?

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Watch two dorks from PFW say absolutely nothing important about the Denver Broncos

Will Tim Tebow be the Broncos starting QB in 2012?
www.youtube.com

Two minutes of your life you can’t get back:

Are you scared to take the Tebow mirror challenge?

In Tim Tebow, sports world gets needed role model — and he's hated
www.orlandosentinel.com

Tebow’s a challenging mirror to peer into. “We want to know at the end of the day that guy is one of us,” says Leslie Seppinni, a Beverly Hills psychotherapist. “In Tim Tebow’s reflection, we are threatened by our own laziness to do the work, our self-centeredness, and our unwillingness to take a risk.” It’s easier to hope he face-plants into the Mt. Everest of coke than rise to his public example.

How sad.

Another Tebow is a better human than you and you should be ashamed of yourself column, complete with Mike Vick dog fighting comps.

Yet there is some wisdom in the psychobabble above. Taking a risk in life is hard, requires thousands of hours of hard work, and it exposes you to criticism and failure. But Tebow--without even bringing into the discussion religion and politics--does pull the trigger on going for his dream. It's completely admirable.

Most people, on the other hand, whether they are evangelicals or not, live lives of quiet desperation, as Henry David Thoreau once said. They simply prefer to watch from the couch and either hope Tebow takes a dive or invest themselves emotionally in his success. In fact, the more of these lazy bastards there are out there, the better for Roger Goodell and his band of merry men. After all, the margins on jersey sales don't just create themselves, now, do they?

McCoy believes his DC preference cost him Dolphins job

Bowles as DC might have worked against McCoy
miamiherald.typepad.com

McCoy, as I reported earlier in this space, was confident he was going to get the Dolphins job. At 39 years old, he was the only one of the finalists that fit into Stephen Ross’s desire to hire “a young Don Shula.”

But that’s not the reason McCoy was so confident. Turns out he was reading signs from the team. He gauged their enthusiasm following his first meeting with them Monday. And he was even more confident after flying to New York for a Thursday interview because that went a full eight hours—nine hours if you count the meal—and afterward general manager Jeff Ireland told McCoy that if things went as expected, the team would send a plane for McCoy and the family to bring them from Denver back to South Florida on Friday.  But it never got to that point and McCoy thinks he knows the reason.

Seems during the McCoy interview, the topic of defensive coordinator came up. And the Dolphins told McCoy they really liked Todd Bowles and would like him to hire Bowles as the defensive coordinator.

At any rate, McCoy didn’t agree to hiring Bowles as his defensive coordinator. He told the Dolphins that as a first time head coach, and an offensive-minded coach at that, he’d like to hire an experienced defensive coordinator. He told the Dolphins he’d like someone that had done the job and succeeded in the job previously so he could concentrate more on upgrading the Miami offense.

Mike McCoy--flexible enough to change his entire offensive system, but apparently not flexible when it comes to defensive coordinators.

The Daily Lard 1-21-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! By now, everyone knows that Mike McCoy lost out in his bid to become the head coach of the Dolphins, who instead chose Packers OC Joe Philbin. And while a certain segment of the fan base thinks they could do a better job of calling plays than him, there is no doubt that retaining McCoy is the best thing for Tim Tebow's future as a quarterback and with the Broncos. Unless he suddenly becomes a candidate for the Tampa or Indy job, or Reggie McKenzie overlooks McCoy's snub from earlier in the week, the former QB will be entering his third season as Denver's OC.

Just as was the case heading into the 2011 season, nothing could be more important for Tebow's development than continuity. Denver call-in shows have likely spent the week suggesting candidates to replace (and upgrade over) McCoy, but we should all be letting out a big sigh of relief. McCoy understands Tim's strengths and weaknesses and how he learns, and he's seen them on display everyday at Dove Valley for the past two years. He's already shown a willingness and commitment to adapt his playbook for Tebow in a way most OCs likely would not; can anyone imagine Mike Shanahan doing such a thing? Mike Martz? McCarthy? Payton? Think any of those offensive geniuses would take over the Broncos if they were forced to have Tebow as their starting QB?

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McCoy loses job to Joe Philbin

Per Adam Schefter: Filed to ESPN: Miami plans to hire Joe Philbin as its head coach.

This after Klis wrote that McCoy had a marathon 16-hour interview with the Dolphins over the last two days.

Now what? 

Ten Worst Moves of 2011: #10 - Trading Jabar Gaffney

(Note: This is the first part in a Epic mini ten-part series on the Worst Moves of 2011; We'll also be doing a ten-part mini on the Ten Best Moves of 2011)

When John Elway and John Fox entered the 2011 season, one thing stood out above all others, and it had nothing to do with Tim Tebow.

The Broncos had a glut at the wide receiver position.  Coming back were All-Pro Brandon "The Pretzel" Lloyd, jackknife Eddie Royal, Jabar "Steadyhands" Gaffney, and a whole host of hotshot whippersnappers like Eric "GQ" Decker, Demaryius "MiniTron" Thomas, Matthew "Don't call me Matt" Willis. Add in a hyped-up tight end class from the 2011 Draft and the Broncos had a problem.

Too many hands and not enough balls (yeah, I just wrote that).

At the same time, the Broncos had potential holes on the defensive line. Compounding the problem was the 2011 Draft, in which, for the second straight year, the Broncos completely ignored the defensive tackle.

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