The 2012 IAOFM brag sheet

Happy New Year, friends.  As we finish up our third regular season of operation, it occurs to me that we had a pretty good year of advancing football knowledge, and of getting stuff right.  In my Navy days, we’d have an annual performance evaluation, and a key part of the process was what’s called the brag sheet.  The sailor being graded would list his/her accomplishments during the year, so that the evaluator wouldn’t forget anything, and could consider everything the sailor thought should be appraised.

We believe in accountability here at IAOFM, and when we get something wrong, we readily admit it.  When we get things right, though, it seems appropriate to be proud of that, and to make sure that those successes make it into our assessment, such as it is.

This is our 2012 brag sheet.  It's like the "best of" articles that other blogs are running, but it's different in our IAOFM way.  I’m writing it, because I have no pretense of false humility, and we all know that.  When we kick ass, I’ll say it, and when we fall short, I’ll be just as quick to admit it.  In general, I’m just as humble as my record says I should be.

We believe that we’ve been the best source of Broncos information and analysis anywhere, and we hope you agree.  These are in no particular order, and in fact, I kind of spaced them out haphazardly, so that you'd read the whole thing.  Check it out, look back at the year of IAOFM with us, and tell a friend.

1.  We saw Peyton Manning’s clear path to Denver right away

The links

Doug’s Lard

Ted’s Analysis

The money shots

Oh yeah, your Denver Broncos. Nah, they have no chance as Mike Klis tells it, after changing his report on Denver's apparent interest eleventy times yesterday. Why would Manning want to go to Denver? Doesn't he want to join a team closer to SB contention? The Broncos' offensive line suck elephant balls, no? We've already been told countless times that Denver's receivers are terrible. Would Manning want to play for John Fox, who hates to throw the ball, and why would Pat Bowlen spend the cash, as Mark Kiszla wonders? Besides, Tebow and Manning are represented by the same agents as super sleuth Woody Paige has discovered, or read yesterday afternoon on Mike Florio's blog. Denver is obviously the longest shot of all those teams, amirite?


The Broncos have to be in this mix, and they're doing the right thing.  I think they're going to get the deal done, because it just makes too much sense for both Manning and for the Broncos not to happen.  What do you think?

We saw this happening, clearly, from the jump, and we listed all the reasons why it would, and did happen.  Significantly, we recognized that the talent on this team (a lot of it young and growing) was better than just about anybody was giving it credit for.  Meanwhile, our friends at the Denver Post voted with their hearts, and with their high hopes for their boy Mike Klis's book sales, and simultaneously rooted against it, and said it wouldn’t happen.  Thus begins the litany of times when we were right, and they were wrong.

2.  We told you what the offense would look like in March and April, and we were dead-on

The links

Part 1 – Basics – Formations, Personnel Groupings, and Fit of Existing Personnel

Part 2 – Presnap Recognition Concepts

Part 3 – The Running Game

Part 4 – The Three-Step Passing Game

Part 5 – The Five-Step Passing Game

Part 6 – The Seven-Step Passing and Screen Games

 The money shots

Since we’re the only Broncos site which possesses the capability of getting deep into the X’s and O’s, we’ll be the ones to lead the way in educating Broncos fans on what to expect.  Let’s get going shall we?


Whatever those OLBs do, a great option is created.  This is why Tamme and Dreessen are worth every bit of $5.5 million of Average Annual Value between them, because they’re going to put defenses in really tough spots.  There will be defenses that don’t even want to play base against the Broncos, and that will open up the run even more.  Does switching out Dreessen for Andre Caldwell take the defense from Base to Nickel, or Nickel to Dime?  Extra CBs are a running game’s best friend, because any RB worth a damn isn’t going down one-on-one very often against a CB.

A lot of subtle things happen on a football field, that most people who write about the game have no clue about.  The degree of subtlety to a Manning-quarterbacked offense is off the charts.  When we set out to write this series, we knew that it would be a tremendous amount of work, but that we’d be giving Broncos fans something they couldn’t get anywhere else.

Remember, the Denver Post was insistent that the Broncos offense would mostly be Mike McCoy’s, and that Peyton Manning would be trying to fit into that.  We consistently and correctly told you that the opposite was true, and that we’d be seeing the Manning offense, with some of the better elements of the legacy scheme kept, but not all that much.

3.  We were all over the selections of Derek Wolfe and Brock Osweiler in the 2012 Draft

The links

Wolfe love 1 (Doc)

Wolfe love  2 (Ted)

Osweiler as second-rounder in March

The money shots

Wolfe, to me, is a potential late-second or later-round pick who might be developed if you feel that you can teach him balance and work on his explosion, both of which should come out of lower body development. 


I love Wolfe, and I was kind of mad when Mel Kiper mocked him to the Broncos at #25 recently, because it gives other teams cover to draft him near that neighborhood.  I think that Wolfe is the second-best pure inside pass rusher in this class behind Cox, and that a team like the Broncos, that expects to play with some leads, would be well-served to take a good look at him. 


The Broncos could easily take a guy like Brock Osweiler in the second round and stash him until Manning is ready to retire.  There’s no pressure to ever play a second-rounder, and if Manning wants to play into his 40s, then fine - you reset the plan in three years, trade Osweiler (or whoever), and draft another developmental guy.

Not too shabby, huh?

4.  We destroyed the notion that the Broncos had an impossible schedule

The link

TJ is smart about schedule correlation; everybody else is stupid

The money shot

But in fact, there is no relationship at all--none.  We looked at five seasons of data from 2006-2010 and regressed a team's beginning strength of schedule against its winning percentage at the end of that same year.  The correlation coefficient was the lowest we've seen in a long time: 0.0285. In fact, it's hard to get a much weaker correlation.  In other words, strength of schedule has no relevance other than providing for mental masturbation.

You know what the “strength of schedule” was for the 2012 Broncos, based on last year’s records?  It was 0.543, which appeared to be the second-toughest in the NFL.  Do you know what it ended up being this year?  It was 0.457.  If you take out the games the Broncos played in, it goes to 0.475.  Last year’s record doesn’t mean anything to this year’s schedule.  If you ever doubt that, check with TJ.  He can also help you if you need guidance on the topic of mental masturbation.

5.  We’ve said that the Broncos were legitimate Super Bowl contenders, early and often, based on what our eyes told us.

The links

Ted’s July assessment

Taking stock at 2-3

Revisiting the Broncos as SB Contenders

The money shots

Let me just come right out, and say it.  This Broncos team is a legitimate Super Bowl contender from Day 1.  It’s a more talented roster, top to bottom, than Manning ever had with the Colts.  They always had some stars, most of whom were overpaid, and then a bunch of marginal young guys making minimum salaries, especially on defense.  They were trying to build like the Miami Heat have, except that that’s a hell of a lot harder to do when you have 22 starters than it is when you have five. 

The Broncos are a lot better balanced than those Colts teams, and they have some young guys with very high upsides.  Did you see TJ’s article about the nonsense that is commentary on strength of schedule based upon last year's results?  The number one reason that last year stays last year is that the NFL is highly dynamic.  Some players improve, others decline, and others switch teams. 

Did we waver at 2-3?  Nope, not even a little bit:

wrote an article before the regular season started saying that I thought the Broncos would be Super Bowl contenders in 2012.  That opinion hasn’t changed a bit.  In watching the two wins and three losses, what I’ve seen is a team that can match up physically with the best teams in the NFL, but which has made too many mistakes.  The thing about mistakes is that you can stop making them.  That’s more likely to happen as everybody gets more comfortable with what’s going on.

And in November:

I’ve been saying since the preseason that the Broncos are a legit Super Bowl contender, and I feel better and better about that all the time.  I think they have a very good chance to enter the playoffs on an 11-game winning streak as the #2 seed.  They’re already four games in on that, and at this point, they’re starting to show the kind of proficiency on offense that Manning had with the Colts.

The interesting thing is that I think the defense has more talent than any defense Manning ever had in Indianapolis.  Both teams are built to play with leads, and to win by hitting the QB, but the Broncos have more guys who can do that than the Colts ever did.  Furthermore, they’re better against the run, and with the emergence of Harris, Moore, and Carter, they have the capability to be better in coverage as well.

Football analysis.  Get some.

6.  Guess what?  The stats didn’t lie either.

The link

STDL: Broncos still pretty good, despite 2-3 record

The money shot

For the third week in a row, the Broncos are the third-most efficient team in the NFL according to Burke's data. They have edged lower in terms of both offensive (from sixth to seventh) and defensive (from fifth to seventh) efficiency, trailing the Niners and Texans; the Falcons fell from second to fourth.

We were all over the high quality of this Broncos team, both from the eye test, and from the perspective of trusting the statistical indicators.  We beat the drum when practically everybody else was hedging.

7.  Retired for John Elway (TYJE)

8.  We told you consistently that the Broncos wouldn’t use a fullback much

The links

Buried in Manning offense Part 1

The Lard 11-8-12

The money shots

Did you catch all the articles lamenting the loss of Spencer Larsen?  Writers love them some fullbacks, mostly because it tends to be a position that’s played by Try Hard White Guys, and writers are just as prone to loving Joe Lunchpail as the average Caucasian fan is.  I was thinking that I ought to suggest to the guy who runs to add Fullbacks to the list, but then I saw that he hadn’t updated the site in a year.  TB = Sad Panda.

Anyway, the Manning offense doesn’t use a FB, practically ever.  Larsen won’t be missed on offense.  The Manning offense uses only two basic personnel groupings:  11, and 12.  11 personnel features 1 RB, 1 TE, and 3 WR, and it’s probably used 60% of the time.  12 personnel uses 1 RB, 2 TE, and 2 WR, and it’s probably used 40% of the time.  The only typical in-series substitution is between the #3 WR and the #2 TE.  The RB who starts a series tends to play the whole series, and the base WRs tend to never be off the field.


We've been saying since before the season began that fullback Chris Gronkowski wouldn't be seeing many offensive snaps. Or at least, that he shouldn't be.

Not sure why Jeff Legwold & Co. believed otherwise, unless they were just willing to believe whatever sound bite John Fox and Mike McCoy provided them.

There were lots of other examples too.  Do you know how many snaps Chris Gronkowski played on offense this year?  Thirty-nine of them, less than three per game.  And, no, Jacob Hester (who played 55 snaps) isn’t a fullback, he’s a Caucasian halfback. 

Trust us on scheme stuff, not the Post.  We know what we know, and we can make educated guesses based on that knowledge.  The DP guys ask questions, and basically have to take the answers at face value, even when they’re being deceived or blown off.  We can also call a lie by John Fox what it is, because we don’t try to have a relationship with the organization, and therefore, don’t care what Jim Saccomano thinks of us.  In this case, lack of access = winning.

9.  TJ was right about the value of the Trindon Holliday signing, even as Ted disagreed

The links

Broncos subtle move shows they’re getting smarter

Gut Reactions – Week 14

The money shots

Consider the Broncos suddenly wiser.  This move won't get a lot of attention, but I like it.  In previous years, the Broncos have drafted various types of players and hoped someone would emerge as a return threat.  Trindon's signing (we hope) shows a recognition by the Broncos that the strategy has failed.  

Holliday may not work out, but the Broncos deserve some credit for realizing the value of having a return specialist on the roster.


9. Ted and I have a running joke.  When Trindon Holliday fumbles, Ted gets to be right.  When Holliday brings a kick back, I get the honor.  It just goes to show easily Holliday can take your breath away--either way.

On balance, TJ won this one big.  It’s fun when one site gets to be right, no matter which outcome happens.

10.  TJ and Doug had the Tebow thing right all along

We thought about which articles to link, and we decided as a group that we didn't need to spike this football anymore.  They were right, and everybody knows they were right, and we can leave it at that.

11.  Matt Prater really isn’t worth the money

The links

Early Prater reaction

More Prater thoughts

Prater not worth the dough

Prater providing no extra value on kickoffs

The money shots

According to Mike Florio, Matt Prater got $4.25M in guarantess as part of his new deal - not $3M as had been reported by the DP.

If this is true, count me back on the side of disliking this contract. Prater will be making more this season than Ryan Clady and Von Miller (I know, rookie contracts, but still), and somewhere in the neighborhood of Joel Dreessen, Jacob Tamme, Tracy Porter, Chris Kuper, and Joe Mays.

This, for a 78.4% career kicker (76% last year, tied for 26th-best among kickers with 24 or more attempts).

Out of 34 active kickers, Prater ranks 29th in overall accuracy over his career. These are not figures that suggest Prater should be one of the league's highest-paid kickers.


For my money, I see four impressive makes, three chip shots, and a miss that wasn't contextually a big deal, already up 10 against the anemic Chiefs.

Obviously, the Miami and Chicago game-winners were more pressurized than other OT kicks because of their distance - a potential miss sets up the opponent in great field position. The 59-yarder to tie the Bears was one of the best kicks you'll ever see.

But again, Prater had missed two shorter kicks at Miami earlier in the game (a 49-yarder in the first quarter, a 43-yarder in the second), either of which would have changed the complexion of the game. Had he made both of those kicks, the team wouldn't have required nearly as dramatic a comeback to win.


A deeper statistical look, via Chase Stuart, suggests that Prater has been the 31st best kicker out of 37 this season, whether measured by success rate, or by distance.

These numbers are not of a quality that should result in a kicker landing one of the league's biggest contracts at his position.

Rather, they're the sort that usually result in him getting cut.


Combining home and road data (including the Browns game), Denver has started, on average, from its own 21.38-yard line following kickoffs. Opponents, following kickoffs by Prater, have started at their 21.17-yard line on average.

Doug hasn’t been getting as much grief about this topic on Twitter lately, for some reason.  I wonder why.

12.  We were early adopters and strong proponents of the idea that Joe Mays needed to take a seat.

The links

Why the Broncos should start Keith Brooking over Joe Mays

Fox, Del Rio on cutting edge with Mays

The money shots

Mays's lack of speed, and inadequate play and adjustment calls has created problems in the middle linebacker section (mid- to deep-middle) of the classic Cover 2 defense. Denver often switches to Cover-1, -3, or -6 to deal with that. That’s good, but it doesn’t obscure the fact that Mays can’t cover his deep middle zone and has other problems.

The question is, what is Mays bringing to the table? He doesn’t cover well, he’s not taking good angles, he still bites on play fakes, he doesn’t play special teams any longer, and his tackling is way down. It’s the picture of a player who’s in over his head. Perhaps he should become the special teams ace and LB backup he was brought in to be.


Shortcomings aside, Joe Mays is the fulcrum of Denver's defensive strategy.

Hear us out. See, the trick is always to make an offense predictable - and by falling into these insurmountable deficits, the Broncos have been achieving precisely that versus elite offenses. Up 20 or 24 points, who isn't going to run the ball? So the Broncos get gashed, teams decide it's time to just run, and then suddenly Joe Mays is a somewhat effective player again.

That's when Peyton Manning gets to do his thing, but so far he's been dug a hole too deep from which to emerge.

And you thought Bill Belichick was the only innovative coach on the field yesterday? Pshaw. John Fox and Jack Del Rio have created the fall behind so much that nobody in their right mind throws the ball defense, starring Joe Mays.

Okay, we'll be serious now.

It’s not coincidental that the Broncos’ current 11-game winning streak began when Mays was benched.  By going to a committee approach featuring Brooking, Danny Trevathan, and (lately) D.J. Williams, the Broncos have really shored up their ability to cover in the middle of the field.  The defense is faster and more instinctive, and the big holes have disappeared.

13.  We’re the opposite of surprised at Chris Harris’s success

The links

Harris proof nobody knows anything

Harris to start for Porter

The money shots

Perhaps it's due to the fact that Harris is five feet, nine inches tall.  Perhaps it's because he didn't play in the SEC.  Perhaps it's because this guy had him as the 48th best cornerback coming out.  Whatever the reason, it just goes to prove that nobody knows anything when it comes to the NFL draft, a league where 1st-round picks bust with regularity and undrafted free agents are named Defensive Player of the Year. 


I've maintained Chris Harris has the ability to start in the NFL.  Tomorrow night, he'll get his first chance to prove it.  The good news for the Broncos?  The Chargers do not have anyone on their roster named Wes Welker.

TJ has been the OG on Chris Harris, even going back to 2011.  He believed that Harris had starter ability, and that at worst, nothing would be lost with Porter’s injury.  Harris finished rated +19.0 on PFF.  Porter?  He’s frustrated.

14.  We absolutely nailed predicting the AFC this year

The links

AFC West & AFC South

AFC East & AFC North

The money shots

The team that could win: Indianapolis Colts

Here’s where I go out on a limb.  From what I saw in the preseason, the Colts already have the best QB in this division.  Matt Schaub is solid, and he fits what the Texans like to do, but he’s not in Andrew Luck’s class.  Luck may or may not struggle with turnovers as a rookie, but I think he has a shot to have a playoff-caliber rookie year.  He’s very advanced  for a rookie QB, especially in terms of ball-handling, accuracy, and anticipation.


The team that’s worse than you think: Kansas City Chiefs

The 2010 Chiefs overachieved, and won the AFC West, and the 2011 Chiefs had some injuries, lost some blowouts, and won some close games late in the season, finishing with a respectable 7-9 record, given their medical issues.  The conventional wisdom seems to be that they’ll return to division-winner form in 2012.  Like usual, I don’t agree with the CW.


The team that’s worse than you think: New York Jets

The Jets will probably be pretty tough on defense, like they usually are.  They have good talent on that side of the ball, even if I’m not buying the idea that Quinton Coples is the cure for their lousy pass rush.

The Jets have big problems on offense, and the least of them is at the QB position.  They say they want to “ground and pound,” whatever that dumbass saying means.  Their primary RB Shonn Greene is totally just a guy, though, and behind him are the underwhelming Joe McKnight and Bilal Powell.  None of those players scare anybody, or would force a defensive coordinator to stack the box.


The team that’s worse than you think: Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers have an excellent program in place, and a lot of proud players within that program.

They’re getting to be old and slow, though.


James Farrior is a big loss, and I’d be worried about James Harrison’s health.  I also don’t like any of the Steelers’ CBs beyond Ike Taylor, and I don’t love him either.  I readily admit that if anybody has the structure and proud old veterans in place to make me wrong, it’s the Steelers; but I just view them as an 8-8 type of team for 2012.

Check it out – I had all four division champions right, and I had both wild cards in the “Team that could win” category.  Looking back, it doesn’t seem that I ever got around to doing the NFC predictions before the season started.  It’s a shame, because I was clearly on my game that week.

15.  We’ve been pretty sure for a long time that Philip Rivers is physically declining, and not just playing badly at a point in time.

The links

AFC West Preview

Charger Game 1 preview

The money shots

The Chargers do have Philip Rivers, who declined last season, in my opinion.  I’ve always seen Rivers as very similar physically and stylistically to Bernie Kosar, and Kosar ceased to be a useful starting QB at age 30.  Rivers just turned 30, and he’s had a similar injury history to Kosar.  I’m not saying the dude is going to fall off a cliff right now, but I do think he’s significantly less likely to age well than other QBs.  For the moment, he is the second best QB in the division.


Mr. Rivers has always reminded me of Bernie Kosar, and I think his game is slipping in his early 30s, similarly to how Kosar’s did.  His numbers aren’t that bad so far in 2012, but I just don’t see the same guy on video that I saw three or four years ago.

Rivers’s numbers ended up as follows:  338-527, 3,606 yards, 26 TD, 15 INT, 15 fumbles, 40.6 ESPN QBR, 88.6 traditional QB rating, 6.5 AY/A.  He was a demonstrably below-average QB, for the first time in his NFL career.  I can’t prove that I’m “right” today because there’s the question of the future.  I’m pretty sure I am, though.  The guy taking the other position is Bill Williamson, who thinks that Bill O’Brien could fix everything.  If you want to roll with Bill, vaya con dios.

16.  We were digging Pete Carroll and John Schneider’s draft style for the Seahawks when absolutely nobody else was

The links

Draft groupthink

Review of rookie QBs

Gut Reaction

The money shots

I’ve been seeing Seattle get killed for taking Bruce Irvin and Russell Wilson, but I applaud them.  They clearly know what they want, and they have the sack to go outside the media groupthink.  I’m here to tell you, Pete Carroll knows what a pass rusher looks like, and if he says that Irvin is the best one in this class, you’d do well to take heed of that. 

The media guys say, well, Irvin won’t play on every down, and he can’t hold up in the run game.  That might be true, but if Carroll is focused on hitting the QB in passing situations, he might not care about Irvin playing on early downs.  His strongside DE in base defense plays like a traditional 3-4 DE and two-gaps, while the backside one-gaps.  If Irvin’s role is to replace Red Bryant on 3rd down, that’s a specific role in a unique defense.

Trust me, Pete knows what he wants on his defense, and he has a specific role in mind for Irvin.  How the kid would fit in any of the other 31 defensive schemes is completely irrelevant, because the Seahawks valued him as the 15th-best player in the Draft, in the context of their own player acquisition requirements.


If Wilson were 6-3, he likely would have been drafted after Tannehill, and ahead of Weeden, so you have to ask yourself how much height actually matters.  Wilson makes the point that his line at Wisconsin was bigger than all but one 2011 NFL line, and that he did fine finding lanes behind them.  I tend to think that he can be successful, given his throwing ability and athleticism. 


2. Russell Wilson is the real deal at quarterback.  That doesn't mean the Broncos should have drafted him (like I'd wanted them to) instead of Brock Osweiler.  Context is king.  Take this bet, however: Wilson will be starting for the Seahawks.

Actually, I think the groupthink piece is one of the more enduringly useful articles I’ve written, and I plan to reference it again in future years.  For this specific example, we were the lone wolves giving Carroll and Schneider some love.  Irvin led all rookies in sacks with eight.  (Our own Derek Wolfe was tied for second with six.)  Wilson was a top ten QB in the NFL (eighth in ANY/A), for a team that looks like a legitimate Super Bowl contender.  Seattle was right, and so was IAOFM.

17.  We had the defense nailed in the preseason, and have kept our readers updated as it’s evolved in new and interesting directions

The links

Quick and speculative observations

Intro to Cover-6

Dumervil as a Wide-9

The money shots

This isn't to suggest that Jack Del Rio and Dennis Allen are exactly the same, but they are a lot closer in philosophy than one might think.  Again, Mel Tucker was the Jags defensive coordinator for the last two seasons.  Yet, I have a hard time believing that Del Rio favored a 2-gap 4-3, given the propensity for the Jags to use their defensive tackles as one gappers. With this in mind, I just don't see the Broncos making the switch to a two-gap system either.


The first thing to understand is that rather than setting the strength of the offense based on open vs closed (meaning the number of personnel to either side of the center), Cover 6 sets it based on the location of the ball vis-à-vis the hashmarks, which are shown in green.  In this diagram, the offense is on the left hashmark.  That makes the offense’s left the boundary side, and the offense’s right the field side.


The scheme is limiting Dumervil’s ability to do some of the stuff that he’s best at, in other words.  That’s okay, though, because the defense as a whole is sacking the QB plenty.  The Broncos have 39 sacks in 13 games, which is tied for second just behind Cincinnati, which has 43 in 14 games.  (The Broncos and Rams trailed by one before last night’s game.)

I think that Dumervil and Wolfe are both sacrificing some personal productivity in the pass rush game in the service of carrying out their assignments within the larger scheme.  

The defense has evolved a lot as the year has gone on, to the point where it’s mostly one-gap (as TJ predicted) but some two-gap elements have emerged, particularly with Derek Wolfe and Kevin Vickerson on the closed side of the defense.  IAOFM has kept you posted on what’s going on, from a technical perspective, and will continue to do so.

18.  Doc was all over the 2011 problems of the offensive line being fundamentals-related

The links

Coaches film and the offensive line

Fat camp: The power of drive blocking

The money shots

The knees should be a little ahead of the toes and the hips flexed, as are the ankles. the thighs are parallel with the ground. The down hand is positioned inches ahead of the shoulders and the open hand, with its elbow pressed to the side, should lie open on the knee with the fingers open and the thumb pointed up and forward. The shoulders should be square to the line of scrimmage and parallel to the ground. The distancing between one player and the next  - which is called the ‘split’ - will vary by the players and the type of play, and that will also be clearly visible.


Power comes from using the entire body in unison. To accomplish that, you have to learn to move from the core musculature. From a western viewpoint, consider the fact that the core muscles - the hips, abdomen, upper leg, and low back muscles - are the central ‘hinge’ for the human body. If you explode from there, you’re really exploding with everything from the toes to the upper torso - and that’s a lot of muscles working in unison. If you add a simultaneous movement in the chest, shoulders and arms, you have even more force blasting outward. Like adding pulleys on a machine, each of these muscles takes some of the load off the others and helps to creates the ability to move with power. Using a sharp exhale at the moment of maximum exertion also creates more power.

Doc has been all over the issues that the linemen had in 2010 and 2011, and how Dave Magazu has coached up the players, and how they’ve improved.  Doc’s the best watcher of line play out there, and he’s consistently kept the reader base educated on the topic.

19.  TJ had the Tebow zombies pegged as horrible people all along

The link

Zombies feast on DT

The money shot

I called the Tebowmaniacs names like zombies and vampires; I took a shot at Bob Tebow; I even implied that perhaps--just perhaps--Team Tebow was more concerned with building and promoting Tim Tebow as religious icon than it was about football.    

Then it hit me: I was trolling the trolls. I was sucking on vampires. I was eating the flesh of zombies.      

As tasty as it was--and you better believe flesh from the undead brings a killer buzz, dude--I realized I needed to balance the scales. As someone pointed out, it's simply not American of us here at IAOFM to create a website (and pay the associated hosting costs) that promotes our views of a zombie-filled football world and let the market decide our fate. Instead, we should fulfill our civic duty: turn our message boards into Zombieland itself.

Zombies, you aren’t missed.  It seems you may be coming to the end of your run, and if that’s the case, it would be terrific.

20.  Ted admitted he had been wrong about Tim Tebow, and in so doing, cracked the zombie code

The link

Cracking the zombie code

The money shot

I say again, to evangelicals and home-schoolers, Tebow is a symbol.  In their minds, then, it tends to follow that the rest of us also see Tebow as a symbol.  If Cletus down in Buttfumble, Georgia sees Tebow as a symbol of Christianity, then Doug in New York, or Ted in Tallahassee must see him the same way.

The major implication of this is that when we criticize the guy, they understand it as us criticizing what they understand him to represent.


Of course, that’s absolutely insane, but I think that that’s what is behind the circus.  Part of the evangelical Christian experience seems to be that you’re supposed to just believe what you’re told, and if anybody says any different, you’re supposed to understand them as persecutors who are trying to victimize you.


At this site, we’re analysts of football, and we call football like we see it.  That’s our reason for existing, and for having a reader base.  I had Tim Tebow wrong, coming out of college.  I believed that he’d work really hard, and that he’d improve.  By most accounts, he’s worked hard, among all his other activities, but he hasn’t improved.  In fact, I’d go so far as to say that I think his throwing has regressed significantly since college.

 You can’t win ‘em all, friends.  Sometimes, by admitting you were wrong, you become right.

1.  I’m not in the arguing business, I’m in the saying what I think business.
2.  I get my information from my eyes.

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