Prime Cuts

Slices of great NFL content from around the web

Monson: Chris Harris is playing at a new level, repaired ACL and all

Analysis Notebook: Week 6
www.profootballfocus.com

Harris has played outside and in the slot in the past, but this season he has been primarily a perimeter corner with Bradley Roby covering the inside. Despite being less than a year removed from major knee surgery Harris is outperforming all of the big-name cornerbacks, and might be playing as well as anybody at the position.

It's going to be really tough for the Broncos to re-sign all of Harris, the Thomases, and Terrance Knighton next offseason. Any of those players could end up with an offer elsewhere that Denver's unwilling to match.

But can they afford to let Harris walk? It says here that they cannot, and will not.

Benoit: Coaches would rather face Peyton Manning than Colin Kaepernick

Who Would You Rather Face? A game-planning paradox: Peyton Manning’s an all-time great, sure, but the dangerous and unpredictable Colin Kaepernick is harder to prepare for
mmqb.si.com

None of those coaches were saying Kaepernick is a better quarterback than Manning, they were just saying he’s more stressful to face. Manning might be able to cut a defense with greater depth and regularity than Kaepernick, but at least the defense knows in what ways he can cut them. With Kaepernick, there’s a terrifying unpredictability.

Also from Benoit: "The Broncos are nearly impossible to play man coverage against. They’re too good with intertwined crossing routes and “switch release” concepts. Look for more and more defenses to play zone against them, at least on the inside."

Barnwell: Broncos’ height will challenge Chargers secondary like Raiders’ did

Week 6 Wrap-up: Heavy Is the Head
grantland.com

The problem on the horizon, of course, is that they still have to play the 4-1 Denver Broncos twice. They did beat the Broncos last year, but the tall Broncos receivers should be able to overwhelm San Diego’s smaller defensive backs in much the same way the Raiders did.

Indeed, the only other receiver who's really given San Diego a good deal of trouble this season was Arizona's Michael Floyd, who stands 6-3 and totaled five catches for 119 yards against them in Week 1.

Tanier: Jets’ problems go beyond time zone adjustments

NFL Week 6 Picks: Seahawks Triplets, Bengals Psychology, Terrible Kickers
bleacherreport.com

Incomplete Passes in the Flat: Geno fails to account for the curvature of the earth when throwing toward the sideline.
...
Terrible Pass Defense: The Jets did not account for the San Andreas fault when assigning coverage techniques. Antonio Gates and Malcom Floyd hit those plate tectonics just right and continentally drifted open.

More problems: Jets fans spend more time booing and heckling their own players than anything else, and crank up the noise when their offense goes for it on fourth down.

Silver: Peyton Manning wanted to run red-zone package for Colts in 2011

Jim Irsay revisits pivotal Peyton Manning-Andrew Luck decision
www.nfl.com

Some of the issues were provoked by Manning himself, who, according to sources familiar with the situation, persuaded some team officials to allow him to conduct unsanctioned workouts late in the season in an effort to push his way back onto the field. Before the Colts’ Week 16 game against the Texans, Manning, despite a severely weakened throwing arm, pushed to return to the field—but only in red-zone situations.

Given the many stories of just how weak his arm was, a Peyton package may have been a disaster. From there, one can imagine many scenarios preventing Manning from coming to Denver.

Thankfully, Jim Irsay did right by nixing Peyton's idea.

For the love of Elway, no

Champ Bailey visited Ravens, not immediately signed to contract, sources say
www.baltimoresun.com

In a search for depth at cornerback, sources said the Ravens brought in former Denver Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey for a visit Tuesday at team headquarters in Owings Mills.
However, Bailey wasn’t immediately signed to a contract as the Ravens have opted to re-sign cornerback Dominique Franks.

Now, that would be one particularly f@#$ed up move, if Champ were to end up there.

This is a strange time to recap Josh McDaniels’ Denver missteps

Chronicling Josh McDaniels’s Expanding Wake of Self-Destruction
grantland.com

In two short years, he managed to infuriate Pro Bowlers, scrubs, opposing head coaches, his own defensive coordinator, and seemingly everyone in between, until he was fired during the 2010 season for creating a toxic workplace and an even worse football team.

Does anyone in Broncos Land really wish the team still had Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall, Peyton Hillis, or Tony Scheffler?

Mike Tanier puts Peyton Manning’s 503 touchdown passes into perspective

Mike Tanier's Monday Morning Hangover: The Peyton Manning 500
bleacherreport.com

Five hundred touchdowns are as many as Johnny Unitas (290), Bart Starr (152) and Russell Wilson (58) have thrown combined. As of Monday morning, at least.
Five hundred touchdowns are more than Jim Kelly and Steve Young combined (469), Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw combined (485), and more than Troy Aikman, Roger Staubach and Joe Namath combined (493).

Let's play this again when he reaches 600...

Silver: Tom Brady could leave Patriots after 2014 season

Is Tom Brady jealous of Peyton Manning's weapons?
www.nfl.com

“Oh, you know he had to be hot,” one of Brady’s former teammates said Sunday. “Look at what he’s got, and look at what they give Peyton. How can he not be jealous?”

Or, in the words of a Broncos player: “He had to be saying, ‘(Expletive) this (expletive). Look at all these weapons Peyton’s got. Where are my weapons? What the (expletive)?’ “

Not that he's going to get moved or anything, but if he's still on the Patriots roster come Week 17, Brady's 2015-2017 salaries ($24M in total) become fully guaranteed.

Cutler’s Law: bad things happen

Why can't Bears realize potential?
espn.go.com

“It’s a lot of little things,” Cutler said of the offense. “Turnovers are hurting us. Turnovers at critical times have hurt us, especially in the second half. We’ve been able to overcome them in the first half, but some of these second-half [turnovers] are hurting us. I’ve got to look at those.”

We blame Cutler for a lot, and certainly he has his faults—especially in the second half this season—but it’s not all on him. It’s just bad things tend to happen on his team. Cutler’s Law, as it were.

Some men are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.

Jay Cutler is none of these men.