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Blog Entry NFL Week 10 Notes: 2008
November 11, 2008  11:13 PM

Week 10 notes on the National Football League

1)  The 49ers.  They had the Cardinals beat, they led almost the entire game, they were in position to score the go-ahead touchdown at the end, then they blew it.  Here's something Mike Singletary and Mike Martz should know: when it's under a minute and you have no timeouts and you have a first down on your opponent's 1 yard line, you use the first down to spike the ball and stop the clock.  Then you throw a pass on second down so that if it's incomplete, the clock stops again.  On third down you make a judgement call, try to run it and hope you have enough time to run a 4th play, or throw another pass.  What you NEVER do is try to swap your offensive package before first down, while the clock is still running!

2)  Cheerleader of the week: Courtney L. of the Baltimore Ravens Cheerleaders.

3)  The Atlanta Falcons routed the New Orleans Saints despite my prediction that the Saints would win.  Here's what happened: the Saints' defense sucked, the special teams mostly sucked, and the offense was mostly okay but still kind of sucked.  And the coaching was a bit sucky too.

The Falcons did the same thing the Panthers did 3 games ago, played better football than the Saints and won the game.  I swear, the Saints defense looks like it's constantly in the wrong scheme.  I don't know who calls the defensive formations and plays, I assume it's the defensive coordinator, Gary Gibbs.  The Saints might need to pull a San Diego Chargers and fire that guy mid-season.  He's been here 3 years and the defense has shown zero improvement, even as we acquire better players (Ellis, Vilma, Porter) we still seem to be running the same old crappy defense.

Adding injury to insult, Mike McKenzie is now out with a fractured kneecap (sounds painful!).

4)  Congratulations Jeremy Shockey!  You've angered your quarterback the last two games, there are rumors that many of your teammates hate you, and you're injured more often than not.  'Atta boy, way to show those Giants what a huge mistake it was to trade you away!

It's a good thing for the Saints Billy Miller is a very good pass-catching tight end.  He made a few excellent catches against the Falcons and that's not the first time. 

5)  My current Top 5: New York Giants, Tennessee Titans, Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, Atlanta Falcons.

6)  The Kansas City Chiefs aren't messing around anymore.  They've been playing tough football and have been in it in their last three games.  Wouldn't surprise me if they start winning games soon.  Of course, They play the Saints next.

7)  Minnesota vs. green bay.  Adrian Peterson was a monster and basically won that important divisional game on his own.  I hope he got a game ball from Childress, he may have saved the coach's job.  I'm surprised Green Bay didn't find a way to win that game.  I thought Green Bay was the class of the NFC North, but maybe they're not.

8)  I've noticed the Saints and Chargers are on identical paths.  They are basically the same team.  Pass heavy offense, shitty defense, mediocre record.  Check out the stats (added the Giants and Titans for comparison purposes):

RecordTurnover ratioTime / Possession
Saints4-5-530:53
Chargers4-5-328:28
Giants8-1+634:06
Titans9-0+1030:45

Offense

Points / GamePassing Yards
/ Game
Rushing Yards
/ Game
Saints2632590
Chargers2725396
Giants29205168
Titans24178134

Defense

Points Allowed
/ Game
SacksINTsPassing Yards
Allowed / Game
Rushing Yards
Allowed / Game
Saints25146238109
Chargers24186264103
Giants18301217787
Titans13241419490

The things that stand out between these average teams and these good teams are:
A) Good teams consistently win the turnover battle.
B) Good teams rely on a balanced offense, average teams rely on their passing.
C) Good teams pressure quarterbacks to get sacks and interceptions.

9)  Fantasy tip: If you had taken my advice in Week 3 and picked up Brady Quinn, you would have been rewarded this week with 239 yards, 66% completions, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions.  I'm smart enough to follow my own advice; with Schaub and Roethlisberger injured, I dropped Quinn right into my starting lineup without a thought.

10)  NFL league MVP race, mid-season: If the Saints miraculously win their division or make the playoffs, Drew Brees is a shoe-in.  If Minnesota makes the playoffs on the strength of Adrian Peterson's skills, he's a solid candidate.  If the Cardinals earn a playoff bye week, Kurt Warner is a definite possibility.  If the Redskins continue to be a force and Jason Campbell continues to not turn the ball over, he's a long-shot candidate.  Also from the Redskins, Clinton Portis is a possibility.  And if the Falcons win the NFC South, Matt Ryan and/or Michael Turner must be seriously considered.

Bonus! New Orleans Saints notes!

1)  Holy crap!  Brees was trying really hard!  Too hard.  He threw 3 INTs, including one on the first play of the game.  He threw it right into double coverage in an attempt to make a statement and set a tone for the game.  Mission accomplished.  The tone of Falcons intercepting Brees all day was set.

2)  Saints stat of the week: 1.  That's how many sacks and interceptions the Saints have over their last 3 games.  One sack and one interception in 3 games.  That is ridiculous.  That is a defense that is not pressuring the quarterback in any way, shape, or form.

3)  Colston breaks out for 140 yards, which is not only good for the Saints, it's good for my fantasy team.

- crocoPuffs

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