Happy Tuesday, friends. Since there was no Broncos game this weekend to comment on, I decided to just share some stray football thoughts for a while. Since I actually had to closely watch the Miami game live last night, my normal Monday night writing time was short, so we’ll see what comes out. Ready….. BEGIN!!
1. I suppose I should begin with the “fire sale” concept, and whether the Broncos are having one. I supported the trade of Brandon Lloyd, because clearly the team had decided that they weren’t going to pay him long dollars in the offseason. Teams have to make organizational decisions, and frankly, we’ve seen a few work out pretty well lately. I don’t miss Brandon Marshall, for example. Did anybody see him playing like he just didn’t care Monday night? That guy is a losing football player, and I don't miss him.
Happy Friday, friends, and welcome back for a bonus Serving. As promised on Tuesday, I’ve come up with six more Tebow-friendly plays, and I’ll have some thoughts at the end pulling it all together. First of all, though, I wanted to address a stupid notion from Trent Dilfer that appeared in the Don Banks article that Doug referenced in today’s Lard.
Dilfer knows what he’s looking at, and he’s a good judge of the ability to throw the ball, and of proper mechanics. His premise in this quote is beyond stupid, though.
His biggest issue will be, every good passing offense in this league, without exception, is based on rhythm, timing and location. There's a rhythm to a pass play, there's a timing to a pass play, and there's a location the ball and the receiver needs to be on a pass play. And those are the three things he really struggles with.'
I think Dilfer’s point that every good current NFL passing game is based on timing is dubious, but I’m not going to lose focus on arguing that. My big problem with this statement is the inherent assumption that just because things have trended in one direction throughout a lot of the NFL that everybody has to go with that trend.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to another edition of You Got Served. Not much of interest happened over the weekend, so I’ll probably just keep this boring and unprovocative, like everybody does on a slow news day. How about them Texas Rangers?
I guess there’s the little matter of Tim Tebow getting some action, and being named the starting QB today, so I suppose I’ll touch on that a little bit. It hasn’t gotten enough attention, so why not give it some? Ready… BEGIN!!
1. The Broncos did the only thing they could do on Sunday, and that’s bench Kyle Orton. He has played poorly this year, and he lost the QB job after an ample amount of time to turn it around and show better results than he did. There’s no reasonable defense that can be made of his play, and no rationalization about anybody else will stand up. Isolating Orton’s play, there was simply a lot to be desired.
When Tebow entered the game on Sunday, he was joining a completely flat team, and they got energized pretty quickly on both sides of the ball. I don’t know if we can attribute that all to Tebow’s entrance, but I think it’s the most likely cause. I will definitely say that I think the offensive group competes harder when Tebow is in the game than they do when Orton is in the game. The 3.5 games we've seen of Tebow tell me that that is the case, when measured against the 33.5 Orton games.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to what will be a somewhat abbreviated version of You Got Served. The Broncos lost, and frankly, my Digesting preview from Friday had it pegged. I got a bunch of reaction that thought I was underselling the Broncos, but I wasn’t. I just had it right; this Broncos team isn’t ready to compete with the Super Bowl Champions in their building yet. Hilariously on Sunday, one of my least favorite trolls from my four years of writing about football accused me of “blatant homerism” in the Lard comments because I can see that Robert Ayers is a good player, and I frequently say so. I got a good laugh at that when I was sitting in the Key West airport on Monday morning waiting to come home. Evidently, I’m a homer who has somehow picked the Broncos to lose three of their four games this season so far. I had a win against Oakland and a loss against Cincinnati, but otherwise I’ve had it right, and in the case of the Tennessee and Green Bay games, I’ve had it very right.
I’ve got rebuilding fever, even if John Elway doesn’t really like that word, because he feels like it provides a built-in excuse. At least his objection was of a semantic nature, and he didn’t just dismiss the idea out of hand that a clear transition is underway. Teams have to be honest with themselves about what they are, and since our analysis here aspires to be of a similar quality to what teams are seeing themselves, we also have to be honest about what the Broncos are.
Happy Rebuilding Tuesday, friends. Since I got my mind right last week and remembered what was really going on, I found myself significantly less upset about Sunday’s game than I’ve historically been about Broncos losses. I also decided that I think Foxball is a great way to rebuild, because as TJ pointed out Sunday, it makes it hard to get blown out of games. As much as I can be a pretty good sport about losing 17-14 on the road when I expected practically that exact result, it remains to be seen how I do with something like the 43-13 stinkbomb against Arizona last season.
In any case, this might be the busiest week that I have all season, because it’s my month-end close, I have a test in my MBA class on Thursday night, and I’m heading out with my girlfriend for a weekend in Key West on Friday morning. I was a crew member of the original USS Spruance (DD-963), which was the lead ship of the Spruance class, and as such I was invited to attend the commissioning of the second USS Spruance (DDG-111), the 61st ship of the Arleigh Burke class, which will take place on Saturday evening. I’m going to do the best I can today and Friday, and I’ll be watching the game on my iPad on Sunday but no other games, because you know, it’s Key West. Anyway, it’s down to football as time allows. Ready…BEGIN!!
Happy Tuesday, friends. You have to like a start to the week that includes a win, even if it was a fairly ugly one. I like the pushback on Monday from John Elway that any Broncos fan who is disappointed with a win isn’t really a Broncos fan. I agree with that, and I’ll never root for the team to lose for any reason. Beyond the game at SAF, it was an interesting NFL weekend, and there’s much to discuss. Ready… BEGIN!!
1. I’m guilty, and I have to admit it. I’m the guy who, particularly on my old WordPress site, has relentlessly beaten the drum about how the Broncos media and fan base lack the ability or inclination to allow the team to undertake a real rebuild, or to admit that one is needed.
b. Broncos fans are spoiled and entitled, after 30 successful years, which included 7 AFC championship appearances, 5 Super Bowl appearances, and 2 victories. They unreasonably demand winning now, while mostly not understanding that every team has eventually had to rebuild.
Then, during the preseason, when the Broncos’ primary players looked good, I let myself get a little overexcited about the team's prospects. Last week, when the team spit the bit against Oakland, I let myself get down more than I should have. Today, I’m happy to have witnessed a win, but I’m not letting myself get too high about it. Perspective has returned.
Happy Tuesday, friends, even though it really isn’t. I was in a hating-some-people mood all day Monday, and it continues today. Last night’s game against the Raiders tells us some important things about the Broncos, and all we can really do is take the lessons and try to understand what happened, and what it means on a go-forward basis. Feel the excitement? Ready… Begin (or whatever…)
1. Last night’s game was a great example of complementary football, and how the Broncos aren’t close to playing it yet. The primary damage was done in the second quarter behind bad field position, penalties, a blocked punt, and a couple of terrible turnovers.
The offense did little in this game to help the defense, which actually played at a league-average level. (I think that’s the best we can hope for in 2011.) When Matt Prater missed his 56-yard field goal, it gave the Raiders good field position. When Knowshon Moreno fumbled, it gave the Raiders excellent field position. When Britton Colquitt’s punt was blocked, it gave the Raiders excellent field position. When Kevin Vickerson took that awful personal foul penalty at the end of the first half, he practically asked Sebastian Janikowski to kick his record-tying field goal, which ended up being the difference in the game.
Happy Tuesday, friends. I had a nice Labor Day weekend, and I hope you did too. It was busy, though, and I’m coming back to a busy workweek, so I’m kind of squeezed for time from both ends. That said, I’m going to get moving and play for maximum value over minimum time. I may even offend some people, with or without really meaning to. Ready… BEGIN!!!
1. Our friends at the DP rubed out again this weekend, breathlessly reporting that the Broncos would definitely be hitting the waiver wire hard before seeing them claim nobody at all. As a staff, we were laughing at what seems to be the front office’s new practice of building up the expectations of the local media, only to make them look bad when things don’t happen the way they were speculated. Woody is already bitching about John Fox’s skill in saying nothing at all while saying many words, as Doug pointed out in Monday’s Lard.
Personally, I’m not very surprised at all that the Broncos didn’t claim anybody. I did a fairly basic exercise on Saturday where I picked through a lot of chaff looking for wheat, and I didn’t find much quality among young players who were waived. The only guy I really liked was Tavares Gooden, and I can’t make a great case that Gooden is better than Mario Haggan or Nate Irving. Of course, when you claim a guy on waivers, he goes to the active roster and you have to immediately cut a player to make room for him.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to another edition of You Got Served. I’m excited, aren’t you? We have some football to discuss, as well as some deep exploration of my use of the word “nutjob” on Friday, which got some people upset. Along with that, I’ll have some expanded thoughts about the Tebow media environment, and why I believe that my comment is justified. Beyond that, it’s a surprise. Buckle your chinstraps, because this is going to be a full-contact Tuesday. Ready…. BEGIN!!!
1. There was a lot of excellent analysis by TJ, Doug, and Doc on Saturday’s game, and I don’t really have a lot to add to it that hasn’t already been said. I decided to take a run at putting together a 53-man roster, since we’re now heading into the fourth preseason game, and a lot of the bottom 45 guys on the roster are going to be trying to get off the cut list with a big play here or there, ala Shannon Sharpe’s story.
The list that I’ve compiled represents the 53 best players that I’ve seen this preseason, plus Demaryius Thomas, who’s going to start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. It includes certain assumptions about the numbers of players that the Broncos will keep at each position, which follow immediately here.
Happy Tuesday, friends. This is the week where we start preseason football, and I’m very excited to get my first look at what’s going on. As a Broncos expatriate in Cleveland, I’ll be listening to the game on 850KOA.com on Thursday night, and then I just realized that I won’t get to see the game until probably Sunday, which is pretty lame. I’ll have to listen super-intently, I guess.
This is the incredible (hopefully once-in-a-lifetime) “2 Weddings in 2 States in 2 Days” weekend, which I may or may not have mentioned in this space. If I did, picture me smirking for my critics who don’t like me talking about anything but football. If I didn’t, it’s pretty much the same picture. Funny how that works. The moral of the story, as always, is that I do what I want, and bitching about it only makes me more defiant.
Anyway, on Friday morning, I leave at the crack of dawn to fly to Providence, RI. I’ll drive across from there to my hometown of Norwich, CT for the wedding of one of my oldest friends, Tony Orsini, to his lovely fiancée Anastasia Barber. Saturday morning, I’m flying back to Cleveland to attend the wedding of my fraternity brother Drew Saum (you know him as the guy who rigged the Madden 12 election) to the equally lovely Molly Watson. It should be lots of fun, and I congratulate both couples.
So, yeah, Sunday for the visual game experience. I think it will be the first time in about 4 years that I’ve had to miss seeing Broncos football game for a significant amount of time after the game has played, and I’m not going to make a habit of it. I hope that everybody who can see the game before me is paying attention, and is applying the stuff that we talk about here, and I’ll catch up with y’all when I can. For now, let’s get to current football events. Ready…. BEGIN!!