I can no longer sit back and allow a stats infiltration, a stats indoctrination, a stats subversion, and the international stats conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids. --General Jack D. Ripper
Last week another disaster movie, 2012, opened across the USA. This coincided with Week 10 of the NFL season. We were reminded of three important things:
The Denver Broncos have thus far avoided complete catastrophe, sitting at 6-3. But another loss, and you should probably head to the basement with all of your canned goods, bottled water, and flashlight batteries.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to another edition of Shallow Thoughts & Nearsighted Observations. Here we are again, with another loss to contend with. This one is worse than the last two, because this one looked like a sure victory when we were marking off W's and L's on the schedule. Of course, if Kyle Orton didn't get hurt, it probably is a W, and the Broncos are still sitting on a 1-game lead over the Chargers. Since that's not the way it played out, we have to do the other thing.
We'll get into the details, from soup to chocolate cake, and make some sense of all this, because that's what we do here. We'll explore what happened, we'll find some things to feel positive about, and we'll have some fun. Out of the echo chamber, and into the fire, y'all. Ready..... BEGIN!!!!
Note: This post is a joint collaboration between Douglas Lee and myself. You can't gather this much data in such a short amount of time by yourself. So hats off to the guy that not only brings us "Horse Tracks" everyday, but gave me the very idea for this post.
Now that the Broncos, Captain McDaniels, and First Mate Orton are sailing through some rough seas (a 2-game losing streak), you knew it was bound to happen.
This shouldn't surprise you. Perhaps you should be more surprised it took so long, given the unexpected sinking of the 2008 season, in which the Broncos drowned themselves after holding a 3-game lead through 14 weeks.
I have always believed in magic.
From the promise of sunrise to the infinite painted beauty of sunset, our world is filled with magic. A child's smile, the scents in the air after a soft rain, a lover's touch, the mountains' beauty and an infinite number of other phenomena can be understandably labeled as 'magical'. Magic plays with us in our daily lives, often unseen, never far from the moment.
Another week in the NFL, and the Broncos didn't win this time, either. The earth remains in orbit, and the stock market didn't crash (again). Once again, some of the fan base is breaking its ankles in their haste to jump back off the bandwagon. Many of them will climb over people's heads to jump back on next week, too. It's the way this season is going.
One nice thing about getting older is getting a longer perspective on things. Patience, like age, can be a useful thing. You tend to lose the idea that the immediate is as daunting as emotions want to paint. You can, if you're lucky, learn that experiencing more wins than losses is actually enjoyable. You lose some of the urge to demand constant perfection of the world. You realize that your will never manifest that yourself, and you recognize that trying to require it of those around you makes you - and them - miserable. It's a rigged game.
"So including last night that's three Stats That Don't Lie incidents that didn't kill you. Pain, or damage don't end the world, or despair, or beatings. The world ends when you're dead. Until then, you got more punishment in store. Stand it like a man...and give some back."
Week 9 of the NFL. Every team has now played half of its schedule. We are beginning to see which teams are looking to give out the beatings on a regular basis (New Orleans), which teams are looking to take the beatings on a regular basis (Detroit), and which teams are just looking for Tim Tebow.
The Denver Broncos? They took another punch to the face this week, but with a 6-2 record, let's just say, I wouldn't want to find myself in a back alley with Brian Dawkins.
Welcome once again to The Stats That Don't Lie for Week 9. These are the adamantium claws of stats. Your statistical Weapon X. In short, these are the stats that are enough to piss off a Wolverine. They are: Turnovers, Field Position, Time of Possession, and 3rd-Down Efficiency.
Happy Tuesday, friends. After being up late, and watching a hard-fought game go awry, I bet you're pretty bleary-eyed, and grumpy, but let's try to make this a good day. I don't want to think that the Broncos have fallen into losing habits here, and I really don't think that's the case.
Of course, those who speak, but don't know what they're talking about, will start screaming about how the Broncos have been exposed, and they're a fraud, and every other damn thing. A few persistent issues have emerged, but they can be corrected. If anything, losing back-to-back games against good teams can teach you a great deal about your own team.
If you were inside the head of Josh McDaniels, you might be tempted to tell everyone how smart you really are.
Then again, if you were Josh McDaniels, you'd be smart enough to shut up and keep your knowledge to yourself. Al Davis has spies everywhere (look behind your bushes right now if you think I'm lying), so there's really no need to give up trade secrets.
During the bye week, McDaniels waived Punter Brett Kern and replaced him with (let's just say it) journeyman punter Mitch "Where's the Beef?" Berger. In a seemingly puzzling move, Denver's starting punter was on the street. We can all sleep well, however, knowing Kern was picked up by Tennessee in a few days. The bad news for Kern is that he's not going to the playoffs this year. The good news? He'll get plenty of practice kicking with Vince Young under center.
The other day, I was ambling about in some stat sites. An article went up about Orton and I decided to gather some stats and some research together - the better informed the argument, the more cogent it can become. I also recognized that I would need a bit of help putting together all the stats, since I wanted to find the bad as well as the good. I gave a yell to TJ 'lebowskibronco' Johnson, who was kind enough to pitch in on this article. It's from both of us.
I appreciate the recent post by Broncos Cheer regarding Kyle Orton. I loved the following discussions, and many posters made excellent points on both sides of the issue. Several folks were arguing against the long-term position of Kyle Orton as the QB of the Broncos, and that's a legitimate concern. I'm very upfront about my disagreement with that position, despite my enjoyment of the arguments on both sides. However - in my own mind, this issue can be aided by being subjected to a small amount of logic, a little history and the value of observing progressions. Kyle Orton's career is an obvious progression that will shed a lot of light on what his future with the Broncos will be.
I've been hearing a lot about Terrence Cody of late. I hadn't really had a chance to make any kind of decision on how I feel about the player and with the onset of a classic SEC LSU/Alabama contest, I thought that this kind of high-stakes matchup would be a perfect chance to find out if this is a player that I'd like the Broncos to consider or not. The week before, I spent some time wandering though the draft sites and the news media to get a little background. These are the things I found.