Last week, we laid out the 2008 rosters of the Denver Broncos and NJ Jets and where the players that comprised those rosters are now. The purpose was to see how much work Denver coach Josh McDaniels and GM Brian Xanders had on their hands when they were hired, as compared with the Jets, who also replaced their coach following the 2008 season.
Today, at the suggestion of IAOFM reader Chibronx, we’ll take a look at another franchise which overhauled their front office following a rough (historically bad, actually) 2008 - the Detroit Lions.
Note: Each Wednesday, we take a look at a critical coaching decision from the prior week’s game that had an impact in the final score—from a statistical point.
Mike Singletary may be old school, but he sure does need some schooling.
Why? His decision to kick a field goal in the 1st half of Sunday’s game helped the Broncos. It may not have factored into the final analysis, but it easily could have.
Singletary would probably remark, like Raheem Morris in Tampa Bay, that stats are for losers.
So be it. Eventually the stats—and the expected points values—catch up to everyone (more on this later).
So, let´s get right to it, or as one of the finest poets of his generation, Dr. Dre, said, “It ain’t nuthin’ but a stat thang, baby.”
Good Morning, Broncos fans! As typical of a bye week, not much in the way of Broncos news. But, plenty of interesting stuff going on elsewhere, including Randy Moss’ refined tastes, Shanny’s newest QBgate, and the release of Lights Out.
I’ll take this Broncos lull to again attend to “business”. Thanks for being here - we continue to grow, and we appreciate your readership. Please keep telling your friends about us - the easiest (and most effective) way to do so is to simply “Like” us on Facebook and to “Like” our posts there. Just an occasional click here and there on your part gets a lot more eyes over to IAOFM. Thanks again!
You’re hearing a lot of this. You might even be someone who agrees with it. There was a movement to fire McD that started seemingly the day he was hired, so this isn’t exactly virgin territory. But, let’s say that you do feel this way. The candidates? I’m sure that there are many, but I keep hearing the names Bill Cowher and Jon Gruden. With great respect for what each has done in the past, I’d like to suggest that one is impossible and the other would be a disaster. Let me explain.
One trick almost all stats guys have in their bag is sample size.
If you cherry pick your sample size to your desires, you can make the numbers say almost anything.
For example, if a team loses 59-14, you can always focus on that one game and make a wickedly-good argument that the loser of that game was perhaps the worst team in history.
Now that the Broncos have finished 8 weeks of play, these tricks become less useful. 8 games turns into 81 drives, 316 passes, and 185 rushes.
In short, it’s getting harder to hide.
With this in mind, I present to you this week’s Stats That Don’t Lie, which aren’t really bad. They’re just drawn that way.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! Our friend Woody Paige is back with some real, actual (and needed) journalism today. In confirming what Adam Schefter stated on Sunday NFL Countdown on Sunday, Woodrow says Josh McDaniels is very much safe in Denver. This is especially so because the Broncos are already paying half of Mike Shanahan’s annual $7 million salary in 2010 and 2011, and owner Pat Bowlen will not consider paying three head coaches next season (if there is one). But aside from the fiscal reasoning of why not to fire McDaniels this year, Woody states that Mr. B and COO Joe Ellis are pleased with how McDaniels and GM Brian Xanders have managed the salary cap and upgraded the roster, and they see growth in McDaniels in his off-field management of players.
Sorry to be out of touch, folks. Certain things took precedence.
It looked yesterday like Denver was taking over the game in the 3rd quarter. Several problems came up, and they lost control of the game. Not unusually, the problems started for the most part with an idiotic penalty call on Knowshon Moreno for falling down. The Niners LB was indeed hit from behind, but if you watch, the lineman wasn’t in contact with the LB when he fell over Moreno - who did not, by any rational measure, block the player. Frankly, that was up there with the lack of an end-zone call on the hold on Brandon Lloyd. Those two factors together cost the Broncos the momentum, and probably a shot at the game. Kyle Orton has tried like heck to put the team on his back, but he also played against some terrible officiating.
Note: Each Monday we take a look at a player the Broncos used in a new, creative, or interesting way from the previous day’s game. This week we’re getting a second plate of not a player, but how bad starts have affected Kyle Orton’s stats.
One criticism I’ve leveled at Kyle Orton is that his statistics have been very hollow this year. The general argument I’ve made is that of course Orton is going to compile some big numbers, because he’s been playing from behind so much—essentially the defense softens and plays a deep cover-4 zone.
While I still feel that the statement is true, I want to say it’s a needless criticism at best. Why?
Because the guy has had no choice.
Good Morning, Broncos fans. I could try to sugarcoat this, but frankly that would be too difficult - I’m a Mets fan, after all. Some might say it was the referees’ fault, or that a few mistakes were to blame for the Broncos’ 24-16 loss to San Francisco. There’s bad luck, there’s misfortune, and then there’s making glaring mistakes at seemingly every juncture. Yes, the Broncos were perhaps only a big call or mistake or two away from winning the game. However, they made an awful lot of them. The special teams were atrocious, as Britton Colquitt shanked two punts, Matt Prater missed an extra point, and Jarvis Moss negated a would-be Eddie Royal punt-return TD with an unnecessary block in the back. The defense allowed Frank Gore to rack up 125 total yards despite his being the clear focal point of the Niners’ offense, while Andre’ Goodman got torched on a Michael Crabtree TD despite having help over the top, and Brian Dawkins and Champ Bailey allowed a Hail Mary completion at their own 1-yard line despite outnumbering the Niners receiver. That same defense failed to take away the ball and came up with zero sacks on the day.
Jet lag—like a set of perfect English teeth—may not exist.
But the Broncos are believers.
The only way to describe their performance today was sluggish. How about just plain blah?
They may have walked off the plane 48 hours ago, but, in what has come to be a hallmark of this Broncos team, they again couldn’t get their wings off the ground to start the game. They barely got airborne the entire game.
The usual suspects appeared—and we aren’t just talking about those British hoodlums that show up to soccer games. The Broncos showed a plethora of penalties, blown assignments, and miscommunications. They were also 0-for-4 on 3rd downs through their first 4 drives.
Can god save the queen? Who knows. But it would be nice if he’d at least bless the Broncos’ run defense.