Prime Cuts

Slices of great NFL content from around the web

Will Von Miller lose Defensive Rookie of the Year?

Miller's production has slipped after injury
espn.go.com

Miller, the No. 2 overall draft pick, needs three sacks Sunday at Kansas City to tie Jevon Kearse’s rookie record of 14.5 sacks, set in 1998. San Francisco’s Aldon Smith, the No. 7 overall draft pick, has 14 sacks. He has 6.5 sacks since Miller’s injury. It will be interesting to see who wins the NFL defensive rookie of the year award. Miller has been on the field more than Smith and has he had a bigger impact throughout the year, but Smith’s sacks numbers may be difficult to deny even though Miller has 29 more tackles than Smith.

Williamson raises a fair point that wouldn't have been even remotely possible three weeks ago.  As we know, and as John Elway confirmed this morning, Miller's hand injury has affected his sack totals.  But do sack numbers mean more than overall production?  Let's just quickly throw down the lines of both players"

Name Team  Snaps  QB Sacks  QB Hits  QB Pressures  Tackles  Assists  Stops 
 Aldon Smith SF 446 14 12 30 12 2 22
 Von Miller DEN 873 11.5 19 28 41 8 41

I could have easily turned all of these into rate stats (sacks/snap, etc.), but they would essentially show the same thing: Aldon Smith has been more productive as a pass rusher, while Miller has been more productive overall. We're clearly biased here at IAOFM. We think Miller is the next Derrick Thomas, but with the chops to also play the running game. Does that mean he's Defensive Rookie of the Year?  In our minds, it certainly does.

Maher breaks the first rule of satire

Bill Maher Slams Tim Tebow on Twitter
www.opposingviews.com

On Saturday, Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos had a very bad day as they lost to the Buffalo Bills 40 - 14.  That led so-called comedian Bill Maher to tweet: “Wow, Jesus just f****d #TimTebow bad! And on Xmas Eve! Somewhere in hell Satan is tebowing, saying to Hitler ‘Hey, Buffalo’s killing them.’
Fox News’ Eric Bolling responded:  “Bill Maher is disgusting vile trash. I can’t even repeat what he just tweeted about Tebow..on Christmas Eve. #straighttohellBill”

Eventually I'll learn not to dip my toe into these things, but until then, here we go.  I get satire; I get hyperbole; in fact, I engage in a fair amount of it myself. Sometimes, I'll even get a reader who emails me upset until I remind them that they shouldn't read every headline I write literally until reading the story.

When you're a young and impressionable man, they send you--cleanly shaven, of course--to Satire School. On the first day, before they assign you lockers, they write on the chalkboard the fundamental rule: No Hitler jokes.

John Elway: when you lose the rock, you lose the game

12-26 The John Elway Show Part 1
www.denverssportsstation.com

“...turnovers kind of got to us again…we were in the football game, and the next thing we knew, we were kind of out of the football game…execution hasn’t been as good in the last couple weeks, but we haven’t done anything to help ourselves with turnovers.”

Elway said little of significance (as you'd expect) in this interview. He's probably just glad it's his last of the year with Vic and Gary.  Here are a few of the nuggets:

  • Regarding the release of Kyle Orton, he did note that hindsight is always 20/20, but also said, "It was the best move for the Denver Broncos."  When asked how much information Orton can provide the Chiefs on the Tebow offense: "There's not a whole lot Kyle can do to hurt us."  Elway further noted that the Broncos hardly use any audibles.
  • About the conservative play calling: "At times it may look conservative, but that's what has worked for us."
  • On Brian Dawkins: "We needed that leadership back there...when he's not back there, we're missing that leadership that he has."
  • On Von Miller: "When you take a pass rusher and put a cast on one hand, it's going to affect him. Von has been frustrated by that."
  • When Gary Miller asked Elway if he would give Tim Tebow some advice going into a big game, Elway said he would do what he could, but that "he's been in national title games before."

The biggest revelation to me from this interview is that the Broncos don't give Tim Tebow a lot of audibles. Elway also confirmed something we've suspected all along--Von Miller really doesn't like playing with a cast on his hand.

Although we poke a little fun at Vic and Gary from time to time, props to them for putting Elway on the spot. The Broncos said they wanted to be more transparent this year. Vic and Gary made them live up to that promise.

Screw StubHub, get out your guitar

Saints Tight End Jimmy Graham Grants Christmas Wish After Hearing Teen's Catchy Tune
www.thepostgame.com

New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham has won many fans this season. But perhaps none greater than 16-year-old Alex Newman. The New Orleans native learned about football from her dad when she was only 8, and she was instantly hooked on her home team. Dad also taught her the guitar, and this Christmas, Alex decided to put those skills to use crafting a tribute to her favorite Saint. On Saturday morning, Stella woke her big sister to tell her some big news. The video made its way to Graham, who made sure the girls got tickets to Monday night’s game against the Falcons.

I'm totally jealous of this 16-year old girl. This never worked on Lita Ford or Dokken when I tried it on them back in the day.

This guy could teach sports fans a thing or two

After leg amputation, QB’s spirit inspires even Tebow
rivals.yahoo.com

“The doctors told me a couple times that I wasn’t going to get amputated, so I was feeling pretty good until Friday,” Rainey, who has received a signed, personalized Alabama jersey from Nick Saban, among other gifts, told the AP. “I don’t remember a lot, but I just remember them telling me it was going to get amputated and I was just like, `All right, well, that sucks.”’

This story has been out there a few days thanks to Tim Tebow.  Props to Tebow for taking an interest.

You've got to love the kid's reaction to his situation.  I've seen worse reactions (me included) to a Broncos loss.

Not only does this story keep sports in the proper perspective, it gives me a new mantra after the Broncos fall in a close game:  "All right, well, that sucks."

One of the coolest things you’ll ever see

Video: Bengals’ Jerome Simpson pulls off the TD flip of the decade
sports.yahoo.com

Best flip since Gerald Willhite:

Hue Jackson wants you to believe Al Davis was a prophet

Monte Poole: Oakland Raiders find a way to 'win it in the end'
www.mercurynews.com

It was enough for Jackson to invoke the late Al Davis, the man who 11 months ago promoted Hue from offensive coordinator to head coach. “The man told me, ‘Hue, we will win it in the end’ and I believe that,” Jackson said. “I don’t know how it’s going to happen. But I know this much: I truly believe in the guy who was my leader, who told me that before he passed.”

Not only do the Broncos have to contend with a pissed-off Kyle Orton, they've got Al Davis bringing his supernatural powers from beyond the grave. Since we're well versed in Davis' powers of prediction when he was alive (Jason Campbell and JaMarcus Russell immediately come to mind), it looks like a Broncos victory is in the cards.

Dude, where’s my playoff spot?

Broncos' playoff race comes down to three scenarios
www.denverpost.com

If the Broncos beat the Chiefs on Sunday, the Broncos will win the AFC West with 9-7 record, regardless of Raiders-Chargers outcome…If the Broncos lose to the Chiefs and Raiders lose to the Chargers, all three teams would have an 8-8 record. The Broncos would win on common-opponent tiebreakers…If the Broncos lose to Chiefs and the Raiders beat the Chargers, the Raiders would win the AFC West by best record (9-7). The Broncos cannot win a wild-card spot so the Broncos would be eliminated from playoffs.

Dareus plans to unleash hell

Dareus set to make good on draft day statement
www.buffalobills.com

“I’m going to make…them suffer.”  The ‘them’ Dareus was referring to were the Denver Broncos, the other NFL club that passed on him at the top of the 2011 draft board. “Denver I’ll get a chance to play them in the regular season and I’m going to make it hell for them every time I play against them.” With that opportunity now a couple of days away Dareus hasn’t changed his tune. “You always need a little fuel so that was one that helped start the fire,” he said. “I’m just going to feed off it and go out there and try to do the best I can to make that happen. I told them they’re going to pay every time I play them so that’s my goal to go out there and do that.”

“I enjoy beating Tim Tebow,” he said smiling in reference to Alabama’s win over Florida in the 2009 SEC Championship game. “He’s a good dude and everything, but it’s always good to knock somebody off the throne. The Patriots beat him last week. It’s time for us to come back out and end our season on a good note at least.”

This is a few days old, but it's good bulletin-board material.  If by "pay" Dareus means helping the Broncos clinch a playoff spot, we are in full agreement. Go get 'em, big guy. 

Want your son to get a football scholarship?  Hit him with tennis balls—really hard

Gronk Gym: How The Gronkowski Boys All Got So Good At Sports
www.thepostgame.com

When Gordy Gronkowski’s five boys were little, he used to line them up in the backyard and chuck tennis balls at them. Hard. At first, he knew, the boys would be scared. There might be some bruises. But to be good at sports, you can’t be afraid of the ball. And so the balls would come, and the boys would have to catch them. Eventually, they did.

Gordy started this when the boys were 4 years old. The boys got older. They got wiser. Their hands got softer and their skin got thicker. So Gordy started hitting the balls at them. With a racquet.

I guess I'm supposed to admire Gordy Gronkowski for this, but honestly, I'm a tad creeped out. Maybe I should be relieved he didn't go all Patches O'Houlihan on his kids and bring out a bag of wrenches.  If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge Ed Reed!