- No Rodgers. No Clay. No Randall. No Jermichael. No Lang. No Perry. No Mulamba. No Barrington. AND DID I MENTION NO AARON CHARLES RODGERS??
- So -- breathe -- Aaron Rodgers, our star quarterback and the best player in the league -- deep breath -- has fractured his collarbone. Considering the diagnosis, the fact that the Packers are viewing this as a "week-to-week" injury makes me cautiously (desperately? delusionally?) optimistic.
|Please, please, please be okay, Aaron!|
- In other injury news, Jermichael Finley was put on injured reserve, officially ending his season. Linebacker Sam Barrington was also put on the IR (do they have any linebackers left??).
- Let's all hope and pray that right guard T.J. Lang doesn't miss any time after suffering a concussion against the Bears. Right tackle Don Barclay, who has struggled in pass protection, was moved to right guard and Marshall Newhouse came in at right tackle. I don't like to be mean to any of my Packers, but I just don't have any faith left in Newhouse.
- I'm trying my best to stay positive, so another sliver of good news is that Clay Matthews had the pins from his wrist removed and is slated to get back to the practice field this week. We need Triple G (The Greek God of the Gridiron, duh) back!
|I miss the hair. I miss the biceps. But mostly, I miss|
the ability to pressure opposing QBs.
- As if anything left on this earth mattered after the first drive of Monday night's game, but there is the rest of the game to discuss.
- Perhaps what upset me most, aside from LOSING AARON RODGERS, was how Mike McCarthy chose not to challenge the Andrew Quarless incompletion late in the first half! On a key third down, Seneca Wallace threw to Quarless on the sideline, Quarless bobbled the ball as he fell to the ground and it was ruled incomplete. There was some chance that the call would have been overturned, as Quarless looked like he had established possession a split second before his knee hit the ground, but McCarthy chose not to challenge for some absolutely incomprehensible reason, even though he had all three timeouts! Why didn't ya challenge, Mike, why? Even if the call was upheld, it totally would have been worth spending a timeout!
|What was there to even think about??|
- I wasn't a huge fan of McCarthy's playcalling the whole game, but his playbook did shrink to about 1/23 its usual size after he lost his MVP- and Super Bowl-winning quarterback.
- Special teams played well, which still doesn't fix Aaron's collarbone, but good job, I guess. Jamari Lattimore had a great game, not only blocking a punt (yay!), but also recovering the awesome onside kick.
|Also, I like your hair.|
- I knew the Packers were going to do an onside kick this game! They took Tim Masthay off of kickoffs last week and I swore it was so they could have the onside kick option! No kicker in the league is better at onside kicks than Mason Crosby. He always gets it to go the needed 10 yards while putting it in the best spot for his teammates. Props to McCarthy for the fantastic call.
- Eddie Lacy had a good game, but the run game is going to get significantly harder now that teams will be able to pretty much put 10 defenders in the box.
|Eddie has no time for the weak stuff that #47 is trying to bring.|
- I love watching Sam Shields in coverage. (I do have to note that he is terrible at tackling, though.) He's so good, even against the big receivers like Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffrey. Yes, the Bears receivers had good games, but, defensively, I put that more on the lack of quarterback pressure than on the defensive backs.
- I think Brandon Marshall is a fantastic player, but he should be called for holding or a push-off on every single play. That man does not know how to block legally.
|Geez,get off him, Sam.|
- So Josh McCown looked really good behind center for the Bears. I actually hope he continues to play well so that when Jay Cutler takes the field, fans will cry for his benching at the first interception.
|"McCown" doesn't quite roll off the tongue like |
"Tebow" does, but I'll still lead the chant.
- The Packers defense had a rough second half. The offense couldn't stay on the field and the defense couldn't get off of it, so I imagine they were pretty darn tired at the end. Still, it would have been nice if they could have come up with one significant stop during Chicago's final, 37-minute drive.
- Sooooo Seneca Wallace. Hmmm. Hard to get a firm take on him. 1) His name is cool. 2) He has really terrible career stats. 2a) But he's played for some really terrible teams. 3) He was dreadful Monday. 3a) But he hasn't really had much practice time.
|4) He looks like he has as much confidence here as I have in him.|
- Obviously nothing else matters besides Aaron's shoulder, but I guess there were other things happening this week, too.
- I don’t particularly like Redskins' coach Mike Shanahan, but I’m going to have to side with him on his assessment of Albert Haynesworth. After a former teammate called out Haynesworth for openly signing with teams, cashing the signing bonus, and then purposely getting cut, Haynesworth responded with a bunch of yakking about his former teammate being stupid and his former head coach being at fault. Shanahan responded by saying: ''When you don't get along with somebody as a head coach or an assistant coach, it usually falls into one of those areas - lazy, lack of passion, and, a lot of times, lack of character -- and he fits all three.'' Snap.
|One of my all-time favorite Onion headlines.|
- Adrian Peterson, you may have noticed, is other-worldly. Leslie Frazier is starting to catch on that when you give the ball to Adrian Peterson, good things happen. Huh, who would’ve guessed? Peterson was absolutely not to be denied on this touchdown.
- Poor Tony Romo gets so much flak for his worst-possible-timing mistakes, but in the Cowboys' four losses this season, Romo has thrown for 11 touchdowns and just one interception, with a passer rating of 115.3. He also has the league's 31st-ranked pass defense.
|I tried to tell them, Tony, but no one will listen.|
- San Diego had the ball on the one-foot line and a fresh set of downs with a chance to win the game and couldn’t get the ball in. After running on first down, the Chargers ran two weird, low-probability-of-success pass plays before having to kick the field goal to tie the game and send it into overtime, where they lost. I get that their run game was a little shaky, but why do you pass twice from the one-foot line???
- Because of the Chargers’ ineptitude, the Redskins were able to overcome RGIII throwing an incredibly unlucky interception in his own endzone.
- The babies-dressed-as-NFL-coaches-for-Halloween crowd really brought their A game.
|The crying Rob Ryan was pretty good...|
|...but how do you beat Baby Andy Reid?|
- What is going on with the Jets?? They beat the Saints! I suppose 200 yards rushing helped, 149 of them from former Saint Chris Ivory.
- New Orleans even had some crazy goofy luck on this Robert Meachum catch:
- The Bengals lost to the Dolphins on a safety in overtime! Miami’s beast of a defensive end, Cameron Wake, provided the sack.
- The night got worse for Cincinnati, who lost their star defensive player, Geno Atkins, for the season with an ACL injury. The Bengals can at least comfort themselves with the fact that they have a fantastic rookie running back. Check out this run!
- Atlanta lost yet again, this time to Carolina, but the real storyline was the meeting of Carolina defender Greg Hardy and Atlanta kicker Matt Bryant, who had a little tiff last year when Hardy called Bryant “small and weird shaped.” Gauntlet thrown!
|Hardy's defense: "He is, is he not?"|
- When Peyton Manning tied the NFL record for most touchdowns in an NFL game in the season opener, I think we all foresaw the next quarterback to join that club would be Philadelphia backup Nick Foles. Foles threw seven touchdowns against Oakland before taking a seat in the fourth quarter.
- Just to note, the Oakland Raiders have thrown seven touchdowns all season, which I don’t even want to make fun of; it just makes me feel sad.
- Former Packer Tom Crabtree had this ridiculous-looking and super dangerous touchdown reception, which was thrown by the running back. Yet that wasn’t enough to keep Tampa Bay from blowing a big lead against Seattle.
- Speaking of Tampa Bay, it’s time for our weekly check-in on what dysfunction is going on there. This time, the issue is that defensive tackle Gerald McCoy was taken to task by his coaches for -- gasp! -- helping an opponent up off the field.
|"No! What are you talking about? Totally happy and healthy situation here."|
- What the heck is going on in Miami?? Offensive tackle Jonathan Martin reportedly stormed out of the team facility after being teased in the team cafeteria last week. He is said to have suffered an emotional breakdown and has sought out psychiatric treatment. Rumor is that Martin has been the target of repeated hazing and teasing from teammates, particularly Richie Incognito. Who knows what has happened, but it’s not hard to believe nasty things about Incognito, who takes pride in the fact that his NFL peers regularly vote him one of the dirtiest player in the league for his hits after the whistle, as well as his reputation for twisting ankles and gouging eyes in the pile. Martin did not officially file a complaint with the players union for several days after the news broke, reportedly out of fear of retaliation from Incognito, who has sent him abusive and threatening texts and voicemails. Incognito has since been suspended indefinitely by the team.
|Sounds like a real charmer.|
- After Brandon Meriweather threatened to take out opponents’ knees since he’s been suspended for helmet-to-helmet hits, the NFL Players’ Association tried to smooth things over. The NFLPA president said he “knows” Merriweather is sorry for his comments. Merriweather had no comment. That sounds like sincere remorse to me.
- Philadelphia running back LeSean McCoy on Oakland quarterback Terrelle Pryor: “I tried to recruit him to [University of Pittsburgh], but we couldn’t afford him.”
|Ya know, because Pryor got kicked out of school for taking payments....|
- Last week, I said the pass interference call on Tramon Williams was the worst pass interference penalty ever called. I was wrong:
|No, seriously, they called P.I. on the Redskins defender.|
- All the teams in the dreadful NFC East won this week. Well, the New York Giants were on a bye this week, which pretty much counts as a win for them.
- I swear this blooper, courtesy of the St. Louis Rams, was choreographed. They need to work on the dismount a little bit, but other than that, pretty smooth.
- Tom Brady had a really good game this weekend, throwing for 432 yards and 4 touchdowns. He seemed to be really enjoying himself.
- Sooooo Matt Flynn was just cut the other day....