Prime Cuts

Slices of great NFL content from around the web

Broncos adjusted by going with dual calls on defense

Tom Brady's secret to beating Peyton Manning? Being in control
www.nfl.com

“They’d have two plays called, so they knew what they were gonna do on the next rep,” cornerback Tracy Porter said. “And we’d only have one play called, so we’d wait to get the other play from the sideline, and they’re already lined up. We adjusted, and we started going dual calls in the huddle, let us keep up with the pace of the game. But in the beginning, it did catch us off-guard.”

It's great the Broncos adjusted yesterday.  Sure it is--when in Rome, do as the Romans do.  

But how long did it take before the Broncos started acting like Romans?  Let's hope it happened before the second half.

D.J. Williams loses another three games to suspension

Broncos linebacker D.J. Williams' suspension increased by NFL
www.nfl.com

The Denver Broncos will be without linebacker D.J. Williams until mid-November after the NFL added three games to his suspension Friday. Williams was punished for violating the league’s substance abuse policy following his conviction in August of driving while ability impaired.

He already was serving a six-game suspension to start the season for violating the league’s banned-substances policy - such as performance enhancing drugs - after the NFL said he supplied a “non-human” urine sample during a drug test. Williams, the team’s leading tackler in four of the last five seasons, won’t be eligible to return to the Broncos until Nov. 12.

D.J. Williams--a walking public service announcement in which a suspension is worth a thousand words.  

Can you believe the Jets gave the Broncos a fourth-round pick for this?

Slauson on Tebow: “That option is not an option”
profootballtalk.nbcsports.com

With all the talk about when/if the Jets will switch from quarterback Mark Sanchez to quarterback Tim Tebow, a fairly important constituency has been overlooked. 

The other players on the team.

One of them, guard Matt Slauson, says that the idea of a change in quarterbacks and the offensive overhaul resulting from it won’t work.
“That isn’t our offense,” Slauson said, per Bob Glauber of Newsday. “I have no idea what we’d have to do.  But to us in this room, that option is not an option.”

Of course, you knew this was coming.  We predicted Sanchez would last about eight games before he caved under the pressure of the media, the fans, and his own fancy pants.

We're heeding ESPN's advice--you can't talk enough about Tebow.  This is especially true when it's not your city or your beloved team being paraded on the national stage and used as a lightning rod for America's culture war.  As Malcom X might have said: "We didn't land on Tim Tebow.  Tim Tebow landed on us."

And we're glad he did.  Tebow is fond of saying that God has a plan.  If God's plan for the Broncos meant enduring the McDaniels/Tebow era in order to pave the way for the Elway/Manning era, then hallelujah---better expressed by John McClane in the movie Die Hard: Yippee-ki-yay, Mother$#%@er!

Manning reportedly taking minority stake in NBA’s Grizzlies

Report: Peyton Manning to become minority owner of Memphis Grizzlies
www.cbssports.com

According to Chris Vernon of ESPN radio in Memphis, Manning has agreed to become a minority owner of the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies.

According to Vernon, other members of the Grizzlies ownership includes Penny Hardaway and Justin Timberlake.

We always wondered why Peyton was so noticeably quiet during last year's NFL lockout; we'll still buy Mike Freeman's assertion that Manning kept mum to protect his own brand. But could part of the reasoning have been that Peyton saw himself as a future franchise owner, in the NFL or elsewhere?

Breer: Pats missing Hernandez on Sunday “a virtual certainty”

Twitter
twitter.com

Pregame work for NE-DEN—Patriots TE Aaron Hernandez is a virtual certainty to miss the Bronco game, I’m told, but could be back for Wk 6.

New England is still loaded without Hernandez, as evidenced by their 52 points and 580 yards of offense against Buffalo. Rob Gronkowski still looms as a devastating TE, and Denver has had their problems covering that position. But Gronk also missed practice yesterday due to a hip injury.

However you cut it, the Patriots being without Hernandez is a boon to Denver's chances on Sunday.

Update 3:09pm ET - Hernandez did practice today, but Breer is sticking with his report.

Gee, thanks Rog

Roger Goodell sends letter to NFL fans
www.nfl.com

I believe in accountability, not excuses. And I regret we were not able to secure an agreement sooner in the process and avoid the unfortunate distractions to the game. You deserve better.

As a lifelong fan, this wasn’t an easy process for anyone involved. I particularly want to commend the replacement officials for taking on an unenviable task and doing it with focus and dedication in the most adverse of circumstances.

Just curious - how do we fans collect on this accountability? Do we get some sort of refund on our Sunday Ticket packages, or on NFL Rewind?

Didn't think so.

Lynch: FOX hoodwinked by NFL re:scabs

John Lynch says NFL “duped” FOX into going easy on replacements
profootballtalk.nbcsports.com

Per Lynch, the NFL called FOX before the season started and said, ‘We’re close to a deal, so take it easy on these guys.”

With no deal done nearly three weeks later, Lynch has drawn a strong conclusion:  “They duped us.”

Lynch also complained about the folks who aren’t getting nearly enough blame for this situation — the people who own the teams.  “The other night I went to bed angry,” Lynch said. “It just speaks to the arrogance of the owners.”

It will be interesting to see if Lynch is punished or forced to issue some sort of apology for his frankness.

NFL: Point of lockout is to improve officiating

Even after Monday debacle, NFL holding firm in referee negotiations
sportsillustrated.cnn.com

The league believes that the short-term pain of a football nation up in arms will be worth it two to four years down the road if they can improve the overall quality of officiating by adding what would be a taxi squad of three additional crews. In other words, it’s likely that Goodell understands that solving the lockout by abandoning the demand for the extra officials would be a popular move today, but the NFL would still have what it considers the problem of not being able to replace underperforming officials.

The owner$ can't po$$ibly believe what they're $aying, or expect u$ to believe it, can they?

What did you expect them to say?

NFL supports decision to not overturn Seahawks' touchdown
www.nfl.com

While the ball is in the air, Tate can be seen shoving Green Bay cornerback Sam Shields to the ground. This should have been a penalty for offensive pass interference, which would have ended the game. It was not called and is not reviewable in instant replay.

Referee Wayne Elliott determined that no indisputable visual evidence existed to overturn the call on the field, and as a result, the on-field ruling of touchdown stood. The NFL Officiating Department reviewed the video today and supports the decision not to overturn the on-field ruling following the instant replay review.

The result of the game is final.

Surely, these fans will be mollified by the league's response.

Doug Farrar, Kevin SeifertMike Sando, Tom LeyLindsay Jones, and Alex Marvez analyze the league's statement.

Plus, reaction to the call from Bill Barnwell, Mike Lombardi, Mike SilverPeter King, Don Banks, Greg Bishop, Jason Whitlock, and Bill Simmons.

Even bookies are more humane than Roger Goodell

Some Bettors Get Relief on Game Decided by Botched Call
www.nytimes.com

The site, Sportsbook.com, sent e-mails to bettors who had put money on Green Bay, alerting them to the unusual decision that their bets would be refunded in the form of a free play on the site. At least one bettor, writing on a Twitter account said to be that of the Canadian journalist Glen McGregor, posted a picture of his computer screen showing the message and quoted the Web site’s head oddsmaker, Russ Candler, as saying, “I can’t stand winning unfairly.”

Darren Rovell hears the blown call may have resulted in a swing of as much as $250M, as bets favoring Green Bay apparently comprised around 70-85% of the action in Vegas and online.

Now that the scabs are affecting the gambling world, I'm beginning to wonder if maybe this thing really might get resolved--and soon.  Despite the fact that the NFL wants you to think they are as pure as Tim Tebow, the truth is much more sinister (see: Mara, Tim and Rooney, Art).

Don't mess with the bookies or you get the horns concrete boots, Roger.

Edit: Turns out Sportsbook.com is only offering refunds to gamblers outside the U.S.