Monday, January 12, 2015


  • Okay, so let’s talk about that call. I think the Dez Bryant incompletion was a good call according to the rule book. But…. I think it’s a terrible rule. The Calvin Johnson/”process of the catch” rule is awful and needs to be changed. I think the refs called it in a consistent manner, but find an honest, non-NFL person who can watch the replay says Bryant’s catch was not a catch. (Here’s the play in real time. If you are a Cowboys fan trying to say that Bryant had full, indisputable possession when he took the steps and fell forward, I would argue that the real-time clip suggests otherwise.)

  • The crazy thing about how awful the Calvin Johnson rule is if Sam Shields had pushed Dez Bryant out of bounds before Bryant had dived for the endzone, I’m pretty sure that would have been ruled a completion on the goal line.

  • Nota Bene: Bryant’s incompletion would not have been a “game-winning” catch, as some had said. The Cowboys would have had to score a touchdown from the one-yard line, and successfully converted the two-point try for a three-point lead, meaning the Packers would have had four minutes and Aaron Rodgers to get within field goal range, if not score a touchdown.

If Rodgers can get the ball into this window, don't tell me he couldn't
get the Packers within field goal range.

  • Why didn’t they show Jerry Jones after the Bryant call?!?! That was by far the most disappointing aspect of the game.

More of THIS.

  • The Detroit Lions expressed some “sympathy” for the Cowboys on the controversial call, tweeting a picture of the infamous Calvin Johnson touchdown-ruled-an-incompletion, but the Lions also got in a nice troll over last week’s controversial pass-interference-oh-wait-never-mind call.

Football Karma.

  • Some of the Lions players had decidedly less sympathy for the ‘Boys.

  • But, hey, some Cowboys fans are taking it well.

  • Julius Peppers has Inspector Gadget arms. Peppers had a great day, forcing two fumbles, one on Romo (which Romo recovered) and one potentially touchdown-saving strip of Dallas running back DeMarco Murray. (He also has an insane vertical!)

"Go go gadget arms!"

  • I have given a lot of (well-deserved) flak to both Davante Adams and Andrew Quarless, but both played really well on Sunday. Adams had 117 yards on 7 catches, and Quarless had some huge third-down catches (and a fumble recovery). Now, if only they could do that consistently.

  • Stop. Talking. About. the. Damn. Ice. Bowl.

  • Troy Aikman: “Cole Beasley reminds me of Wes Welker and Danny Amendola. ” Uhh, because they’re all white?

"Nelson reminds me of Welker, even though they have completely different
skill sets. Just something about them ... can't quite put my finger on it."

  • I know Packer fans should be wary about complaining about the officiating, but there were two huge pass interference penalties called against Tramon Williams that were ticky-tack at best. And the personal foul call on TJ Lang was horrendous. He was called for a late hit, but the problem was the play was still ongoing, the whistle hadn’t been blown, and he was blocking for his receiver, who was still being pummeled by multiple Cowboys defenders.

  • Eddie Lacy had a strong day, particularly in the first few drives. He ended with 101 yards, but was used sparingly later in the game due to asthma issues brought on by the cold.

  • Aaron Rodgers was obviously not himself due to his calf injury, most noticeably in the first half. He was able to find a rhythm in the second half, when he completed 15-of-20 passes, including going 9-for-9 in the fourth quarter. Gutting through the pain for that kind of performance deserves ...THE BELT! (And a Shooter McGavin nod.)

  • The third-down throw to Randall Cobb that sealed the game was actually intended for Jarrett Boykin, but the ball got tipped at the line of scrimmage and Cobb was mercifully able to adjust and catch it.

  • In other happy Packers news:

Yay, Mason!

  • There are a lot of teams that can beat Green Bay, but the Seattle Seahawks are the only team I’m scared of. Very, very scared for next week.

  • If it makes Cowboys fans feel any better, this explains so much about Tony Romo. Just imagine how good he’d be if he threw the ball with his eyes open!

  • The New England Patriots pulled out some trickery against the Baltimore Ravens. That’s right, I mean Tom Brady’s lateral to receiver Julian Edelman (who played quarterback in college), who threw a beautiful pass to receiver Danny Amendola for a touchdown.

  • As for the other New England trickery … I’m not really sure where I stand on the fairness of the Patriots’ substitution schemes. As I understand it, here’s what happened: the Patriots threw the Ravens for a loop by only playing four offensive lineman (which is legal because they had one of their receivers or tight ends declare themselves ineligible, meaning that player could not catch a pass on that play. Declaring themselves eligible or ineligible just means telling the ref that, and the ref then announces it on the PA so the defense knows about it.). This means one of the New England players who lined up where you would usually see the offensive linemen line up was actually an eligible receiver, who burnt the Ravens defense because you obviously don’t plan to guard someone you think is an offensive lineman down the field. This is all legal, but if an offense makes a substitution, the rules dictate that the defense must be given time to make their own substitutions. The head ref said he gave that time, but the Ravens felt like they were not given sufficient time. (The length of time is a “judgment call” -- oy.) Sometimes, a ref will stand over the ball until the signal is given that the defense has had enough time for substitutions, which did not happen in the New England-Baltimore game (nor is it required, I don’t think). The thing is, the Ravens have to be allowed enough time to literally get men on the field, but they are not owed time to sit and figure out opponents’ formations. That’s what timeouts are for. (Read the links; they explain it a lot better than I.) The Pats were able to use this strategy four times, all for big gains.

Coach Harbaugh respectfully disagrees.

  • The Ravens played well, twice taking a 14-point lead before New England came roaring back. The Patriots went pass-heavy against the battered Baltimore secondary, only running the ball seven times! Tom Brady threw for three touchdowns, but also had an interception, which led to a Ravens touchdown, which led to Sad Brady.

Don't worry, Tom; it gets better!

  • I was so impressed with the Carolina Panthers hanging in for so long against the Seattle Seahawks, despite being a far, far inferior team. The final score doesn’t reflect how valiant Carolina’s effort was, but the game was still within reach for them in the fourth quarter (then things got ugly).

  • Surely, surely, the Panthers must have a better options at punt returner than Brenton Bersin. Your returner should instill fear in the hearts of the opponents, not your fans.

What about this man could possibly make the Panthers have faith in him?

  • So Seattle safety Kam Chancellor is very athletic. He nearly blocked a field goal by hurdling the line (but the kick was nullified by a Carolina penalty).

  • So the Panthers lined up to try the kick again, and Chancellor did the same thing (but the down was replayed because Chancellor was flagged for running into the kicker).

  • So Carolina kicker Graham Gano courageously tried a third time, though that couldn’t have been a fun situation for him. Chancellor shutdown freak mode this time and stayed on his side, and the kick was good.

  • I just have to say that I think it’s totally and completely unfair that the Seahawks have probably the top two safeties in the league in Chancellor and Earl Thomas. Shouldn’t there be some sort of antitrust-type rule to break up injustice like this? And shouldn’t that rule be created and enforced before next Sunday? PLEASE?

  • The number three pick in the 2012 NFL draft was a healthy inactive for the Indianapolis Colts. Trent Richardson, epic running back bust, was not active. That left the Colts with Daniel Herron (whose “Boom” nickname seems a little bit of an overreach; he had 63 yards on 23 carries) and someone named Zurlon Tipton, who had 14 yards. As it turned out, Indianapolis didn’t really need a run game, as they handled the Broncos 24-13.

  • I certainly did not expect the Indianapolis Colts to beat the Denver Broncos. Peyton Manning, who reportedly has been playing through a torn right quad the last month, looked terrible. He was 26-for-46 for 211 yards and one touchdown, which aren’t really awful numbers by themselves, but get worse when you break them down. Manning was just 6-for-21 on throws of five or more yards, and 5-of-14 on third downs, plus garbage time improved his numbers.

This meant a lot of Manning Face, which was more pitiful than funny
because of the possibility that Manning has played his last game.

  • Now, excuse me, I have to go talk to the Football Gods and see what I can sacrifice in return for a win next week.


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