Chris Harris ACL Injury will take Toll on Broncos defense

The Denver Broncos will be heading against Tom Brady’s New England
Patriots in the AFC title without Chris Harris. After an MRI it was
confirmed on Monday that Harris has a torn anterior cruciate ligament
(ACL).

Last Sunday’s game between Denver Broncos and San Diego Chargers in
which the Broncos won 24-17, Chris Harris left the game due to a knee
and ankle injuries.

The Broncos have dealt with a lot of injuries on their defensive on
their way to the AFC Championship Game, the injury of cornerback Chris
Harris will add to their injury problems and could affect them
greatly. Harris is the fifth important defensive contributor to go
down. It was clearly evident when the Broncos nearly collapsed after
Harris left the game in the 3rd quarter. Before he was injured, the
Broncos shut out the Chargers while allowing just 1.54 yards a pass
play. They took a 17-0 lead into the fourth quarter. After he left the
game Broncos gave up 9.67 yards a pass play and allowed 17 points.
Chargers’ quarterback Philip Rivers capitalized on it to stage a
comeback, too bad for them Peyton Manning saved the Broncos from the
brink of another epic collapse and sent them into the title game for
the first time in eight seasons.

Manning converted a 20-yard pass to Julius Thomas on third-and-17 from
his 20-yard line. He also hit Thomas on third-and-6 from his 45, then
the Broncos hit the dagger on Knowshon Moreno’s 5-yard burst on
third-and-1 with 1:12 left. They did what needs to be done in the
offense in the fourth.

Mike Adams said that the effect of losing Harris was obvious “When
Chris went down, things started to unravel a little bit on the back
end.”

Denver Broncos would need to think long and hard on their replacement
options for Harris. Champ Bailey would be a good choice, he played as
a slot cornerback since his return from sprained left foot.

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Ovechkin’s defense under the microscope…again

Way to backcheck there Ovi!

ProHockeyTalk

After Game 3, it was the way he defended (or didn’t defend) Ryan McDonagh at the point prior to the Rangers’ game-winner by Derek Stepan.

Now, after Game 4, it was his effort (or lack thereof) in trying to stop Stepan’s second game-winner in a row.

Following is the goal. You decide if Alex Ovechkin’s defensive play deserves to be ridiculed this morning on Deadspin.

[nbcsports_video src=http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZkuYHbKEuZw service=youtube width=590 height=332]

It doesn’t look good, especially in GIF form.
Derek Stepan goal Capitals/Rangers 5/8/2013 - Created at yt2gif.com

But Capitals blog Russian Machine Never Breaksputs the blame on the other Caps on the ice, calling Ovechkin’s late straight-legged appearance a “bad visual, but that’s all.”

Ovechkin’s a winger, so Stepan — a center — wouldn’t normally be his responsibility. (Wingers take the point men.)

And perhaps Ovechkin figured he was way too late to get to Stepan anyway. Which he probably was.

And hey, at least he got a…

View original post 28 more words

2012 NFCDG – Falcons beat Seahawks?

Finally… the monkey is off the collective backs of Matt Ryan and Mike Smith with a strong win over arguably the hottest team in the NFC in the Seattle Seahawks.

As the Falcons prepare for the upcoming game against the San Francisco 49ers though, I have more questions about this win than answers. More on that later.

For now, enjoy a montage of gif action, compiled by AF.com and TheScore.

Love this play… The Real Beast was Jacquizz Rodgers on this play running over Earl Thomas

The win was uncharacteristically sloppy in regards to penalties, expect Mike Smith to clean that up before the NFCCG.

One of my favorite sequences was this one, featuring Richard Sherman and Roddy.

This guy has talent, but he’s also got a huge mouth and zero class.

Sherman made a few key plays during the game, especially on the deflection on an early game Roddy White target in the endzone. Matt Ryan delivered the ball late, allowing Sherman to catch up to the play and deflect a sure touchdown.

Sherman let Roddy have it, talking trash the entire way until this play.

notice Sherman “falling down” as ball arrives…

Of course… Roddy being Roddy, made sure to tell Sherman that yes, indeed he had caught the ball.

Love it.. you are down 20-0 just gave up a huge touchdown and you do the golf clap. #dontgetit

Sherman didn’t impress me much, he was abused several times by Roddy White.

The 5 yard touchdown to Snelling. Notice the Julio Jones decoy.

A look at the 5 yard misdirection shovel pass by Ryan… I really do love the fact that DK uses Julio so effectively as a decoy, but maybe it’s time to use him a little more than that?

Gonzalez with the huge touchdown in the 1st quarter. So happy for TG.

Unfortunately, Abraham re-injured his ankle early in the second quarter and did not return. He’ll need to get healthy quick to help a subpar pass rush, although with Colin Kaepernick coming to town, pass rush may not be as important as it is with traditional pocket passers.

containing Kaepernick is crucial

I’ll be back later with more preview of Falcons – Niners, and hopefully the Falcons heading to NO for the Super Bowl.

Rise Up.

NFL Week 10 Preview – Falcons March into Superdome to take on Saints

Well it’s finally here, the game I’ve been waiting for since Week 1, but it doesn’t have quite the feel I expected. I figured for a nasty showdown for NFC South supremacy but this is looking more like a desperation game for the Saints.

At 3-5 and with a porous defense, the Saints look ripe for the picking. Which looks worrisome to many Falcon fans in this pivotal week 10 interdivision matchup. Sadly, I don’t think the Falcon fans have much to worry about, because this Falcon team is going to shoot out of the gate and play angry.

Why? well… why not? The Saints are down and out this year, missing their head coach and fielding quite possibly the NFL’s worst statistical defense ever but none of that matters for the boys from Atlanta.

Last year the Saints ran up the score, despite the game being out of reach. Forty five points later Drew Brees set the passing record, and there wasn’t a single uttered word out of the Falcon locker room. Let’s not forget about ‘peeing’ on the Falcon logo midfield either, because there’s no doubt the Falcons remember.

The Saints defense has been flat out awful this year, with zero pass rush ( unless you behind the Eagles offensive line ), poor tackling and horrendous secondary play. They have also allowed a record setting amount of yardage on the ground, giving up 1,412 yards on 266 carries for a robust average of 5.3 YPC.

But that really doesn’t tell the entire story because this defense under Steve Spagnuolo is giving up points at a record pace ( points against – 229, for 28.6 per game ) and allowing  at least 400 yards in every game this season.

Yikes.

The Falcons are ranked seventh in scoring (averaging 27.5 points per game) and eighth in total yards (376.6 yards per game). Against a far superior 4th ranked defense in the Cowboys, the Falcons had a 300 yards passing, 2 100 yard receiving performances and over 100 on the ground.

And now, here comes the part where I tell you that most of this data is probably not going to be relevant for this Week 10 matchup. Why? because its the Saints and Falcons! why else?

A Review of the Falcons-Cowboys game.

Simply put, this is the season for the hosting New Orleans Saints. A win would be their fourth in five games and make them a dark horse for the last wildcard spot, a loss means it’s pretty much over at 3-6. Just ask Mike Shanahan.

So on paper the odds don’t look good for the Saints, which is what really worries me. While the Falcons hung 443 on the league’s 4th ranked defense in the Dallas Cowboys, there will be no doubt that Joe Vitt will have the Saints ready to play.

So the Superdome will be a-rockin, the Saints will be a-desperate but that won’t save them against a resurgent Michael Turner and the multi headed passing attack led by Matt Ryan.

Julio Jones and Roddy White shred the Cowboys #4 ranked defense and the pair of Claiborne and Brandon Carr, hauling in 100+ yards apiece. After much of the media focused on the Cowboys corners, and proclaiming they could “shutdown” the Falcon receivers, these Dirty Birds still cannot get a shred of respect.

Which is why they need to win big, which is why I think the Falcons go outside the box and run up the score on the Saints.

If you are watching at home, you should pay attention because this opponent is the only one I can see head coach Mike Smith rolling the score up on.

Also watch for ex-Falcon MLB Curtis Lofton, who didn’t fit in Mike Nolan’s scheme due to his coverage skills, or lack thereof. Lofton has taken liberties and been very outspoken about hating the Falcons, so it will be interesting to see what gameplan the Falcons roll out.

Falcons in a blowout – 45-21, and a 9-0 record.

Here’s to listening to the media pundits on Monday continue to talk about how unimpressive the 9-0 Falcons are.

Go Falcons.

COTW : Marcus Vick Scouting Report – A look back

In honor of Marcus Vick’s now famous thread of tweets sent out during the first half of the Eagles / Saints game in Week 9, I’ve un-retired an old “Chump of the Week” post about the younger Vick on one of my older blogs I used to run.

For those who haven’t seen the tweets in question, here they are :

I couldn’t have put my foot in my mouth any better than that Marcus, congratulations. While your brother is being blasted on every snap, you decide to run your fool mouth DURING HIS GAME and heap fuel onto an already very volatile situation.

Originally posted on Jan 10th 2006, I wrote up this post before Marcus declared himself eligible for the NFL draft, and before the Dolphins unsuccessful quarterback-to-receiver transformation.

Here it is in all it’s glory, Enjoy!

Originally posted on Jan 10th 2006

Nowadays you cant seem to follow sports without stumbling upon a guy so gifted that hes a complete moron. Someone like Marcus Vick.

Yes, I am a Falcons fan, yes I love watching Michael his brother, and yes sadly, I almost laugh in glee when I see Marcus because here’s an idiot in an athletes body. Here’s a guy who according to a lot of NFL scounts had more potential, more skills and more physical gifts than his brother Mike, and thats saying something.

Too bad Marcus was absent when God was handing out brains. In a mere matter of 3 weeks, he goes from NFL potential star / first round draft pick / millionaire to becoming taydatay.com’s next CHUMP OF THE WEEK.

Sept. 2, 2003  Suspended for one game by coach Frank Beamer for undisclosed reason.

Feb. 17, 2004  Arrested without incident and charged with four misdemeanors — three for allegedly allowing the underage girls to have alcohol and one for allegedly having sex with a 15-year-old at a January party. Released on $2,500 bond.  

May 14, 2004  Convicted of three counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined $2,250. Found innocent of having sex with the 15-year-old.  

July 3, 2004  Charged with reckless driving and possession of marijuana after a traffic stop about 25 miles east of Richmond at 2:30 a.m. Police said he was clocked at 86 mph, 21 mph above the speed limit, and that the vehicle stunk of marijuana.  

July 6, 2004  Indefinitely suspended from football team for off-field problems.  

Aug. 3, 2004  Suspended from the university for the 2004 season on same day he pleads guilty to reckless driving and no contest to marijuana possession in New Kent. Is fined $300, has driver’s license suspended for 60 days and is placed in a first offender program on the marijuana charge, requiring that he perform 24 hours of community service, undergo drug counseling and random drug tests, and give up his driver’s license for six months.  

Sept. 13, 2004  Makes a plea deal, pleads no contest to one misdemeanor count of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Receives 30-day suspended jail sentence, is fined $100, ordered to perform 24 hours of community service and stay away from the teenage girls.  

Jan. 17, 2005  Cleared to rejoin football team and re-enroll at Virginia Tech.  

Oct. 1, 2005  Leads No. 3 Hokies to 34-20 victory at West Virginia, and makes obscene gesture to fans who have been calling him names related to past problems throughout the game. He apologized a day later.  

Dec. 17, 2005  Pulled over by police in Hampton for driving 38 mph in a 25 mph zone and driving with a suspended license.  

Jan. 2, 2006  Leads Virginia Tech to a 35-24 win over Louisville in Gator Bowl. In the game, he stomped on the left calf of Cardinals All-American defensive end Elvis Dumervil, the     NCAA sacks leader. Claims the incident was accidental and that he apologized to Dumervil, who denies ever receiving apology.  

Jan. 6, 2006  Is kicked off team at Virginia Tech for legal trouble and unsportsmanlike conduct in Gator Bowl.  

Jan. 10, 2006  Charged Monday with pulling a gun on three teenagers during an altercation in a restaurant parking lot, Vick turns himself in after three warrants were issued for his arrest. Vick, 21, was charged with three misdemeanor counts of brandishing a firearm, and was released on $10,000 bond.

To save NFL scouts precious time, I have spent countless hours pouring over game tape and have applied the many talents of Marcus Vick against one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time….. Quarterback Jack.

There you have it, another entry into the legendary annals of “Chump of The Week”

NFL 2012 Week 9 Preview – Cowboys a potential trap game for Falcons

What a difference a week makes huh? Just 2 weeks ago it looked like the Falcons were falling back to earth and perhaps being exposed for being the biggest frauds in the NFL outside of Arizona.

After completely outcoaching, outplaying and destroying the Philadelphia Eagles on the road in Week 8, the Falcons now prepare for a tough home test against the Dallas Cowboys.

Dallas looked dysfunctional in their week 8 home 29-24 loss to the New York Giants, and after losing three of their last four games, they are desperate and dangerous as they come in the NFC. Currently tied with the Eagles at 3-4, this game is a must win for Dallas if they want to remain relevant in the NFC.

The Cowboys are hungry and desperate coming into this game with a lot of question marks and the Falcons are on cruise control. Perfect recipe for a trap game if I’ve ever seen one.

It’s hard to get a good read on this team, mostly because their quarterback Tony Romo is so wildly inconsistent from week to week. While I’m no fan of Romo, he is extremely talented but also prone to turning the ball over with fervent aplomb as evidenced by his 10 interceptions over just the last four games.

Much of this can be attributed to the lack of apparent trust between Romo and Dez Bryant, which could be another reason why Witten hauled in 18 passes for 167 yards in the Week 8 loss.

Falcons nickel linebacker Sean Weatherspoon has a low ankle sprain and is listed as probable. They are going to need him if they want to match up well against Witten, but the Cowboys have linebacker issues as well with Sean Lee out for the year. His replacement, Dan Connor who should be familiar to Falcon fans, is also nicked up and may miss the game with nerve damage to his neck.

— Weatherspoon is out against the Cowboys, as per ESPN.

If Connor cannot go for the ‘Boys (did not practice Wednesday) they would be looking at Orie Lemon as his replacement in the base 3-4 alignment. Against a Hall of Famer in Tony Gonzalez, the Cowboys will need to help Lemon if they want to contain the middle of the field.

The problem is, their secondary will have their hands full against the trio of Julio Jones, Roddy White and Harry Douglas, who may return after missing Week 8. Cowboys corners Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr have done well this season, and their secondary is  third in passing yards allowed (187.7), but they have yet to face an attack as diverse as Atlanta’s this year.

Demarco Murray returned to practice this week for Dallas, and they will need to get him going as Felix Jones has struggled to provide balance for the Dallas offense.

The Falcons run game has been a mix of good and bad this year, mostly bad but with the emergence of Jacquizz Rodgers, Atlanta may have a two-headed running back attack thing going. Against a talented front seven in the Cowboys the Falcons will need to maintain balance to prevent Demarcus Ware from teeing off on Matt Ryan.

Things to watch for :

“THE BIG THREE” – No, I’m not talking about Matt Ryan, Roddy White and Jones / Gonzalez. I am talking about the tackles Jonathan Babineaux, Vance Walker and Peria Jerry, who formed a unique defensive line against the Eagles on running downs.

The Falcons entered the game giving up 143.8 yards rushing per game, but held the Eagles to 92 yards rushing on 24 carries (3.8 yards per carry) in their 30-17 victory. Most of the 92 yards rushing came in garbage time, as the Falcons stuck to prevent defense.

Is this a sign of things to come as the Falcons truly do not have the big nose tackle that Nolan desires in his defense?

“BEER MAN “ Falcons DE/LB Kroy Biermann played a pivotal role against the Eagles, both in “spying” Michael Vick and as a zone dropback defender on Brent Celek. His diverse skillset is being used by Mike Nolan to tremendous success, as ‘Beerman’ had seven tackles and one sack, and limited Vick to 42 yards on the ground

Julio Jones vs…. well anybody : I soundly disliked the draft day trade for Julio Jones, but he is making me eat my words ( happily I might add ) He is a dynamic force for this offense, and his impact is felt even when he doesn’t get the ball as evidenced by the 2 first Atlanta touchdowns in Philly. He also managed to make a very good man cover cornerback look the complete fool last week, as Matt Ryan had a passer rating of 158.3 when targeting Nnamdi Asomugha, according to Pro Football Focus…. yikes

It’s going to be a tough game, but one that should fall right into the Falcons wheelhouse at home.

31-10 Dirty Birds for win number 8

Go Falcons.

Colin Cowherd is an idiot.

Straight to the point huh? No special tags, no double meanings in that title whatsoever.

Colin Cowherd is an idiot, plain and simple.

Why you ask? well I can name any number of incidents, but his recent NFL power rankings has me wondering if good ‘ol Colin isn’t sniffing bath salts.

According to Cowturd, his rankings are as follows :

1. Giants
2. Bears
3. Patriots
4. Steelers
5. Texans
6. 49ers
7. Falcons
8. Packers

Yes, the Falcons that just dismantled the Eagles on the road, the offense scored on their first six tries, didn’t punt until late in the fourth quarter and the much maligned run defense shut down a “hungry” Eagle offense.

I’ll admit I’ve had my doubts about how good this team is ( being a Falcon fan since 1981 will do that to you ) but after the Eagles game, there cannot be any doubt.

Not saying the Falcons will go undefeated the rest of the way, or will win the Super Bowl or anything ridiculous like that. Just saying that given the small sample size we do have, there cannot be any question who number 1 is.

Anything to the contrary and you are just a biased homer who doesn’t know anything about football.

Speaking of…..

Colin’s reasoning for placing the Falcons so low is that “they did nothing to improve in the offseason” multiple tries by Falcons fans to inform Cowturd that the coaching staff changed the team were hung up on because they were “biased”

Colin states that the Falcons barely beat the Panthers and the Raiders even though the Steelers lost to the Raiders and Bears got dominated by the Panthers before pulling out a miracle win.

Biased much?

I’ve bashed this idiot before, but this one really does take the cake. How he gets paid to write nationally I will never know, but one thing’s for sure.

If you don’t know what you are talking about, pretend you do, and bash anyone who opposes you despite facts or real data, you are an attention whore.

Not that Mike Smith and the Falcons are complaining, I’m sure. The less attention they have the more they like it, and I agree with them wholeheartedly as they prepare for the Dallas Cowboys.

So keep on hating Colin, maybe the 7th best team in the NFL just make you look like the total ass that you are.

Go Falcons