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Jun 15, 2009
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What a mess in the end. I mean the non-calls.
And where are the good old blow-outs? I am not convinced that SB-Defenses can´t hold a big lead for ten straight years. It´s very dubious. Very. :mad:

I think i´ll do the next season as this one: Skip the regular season, and bet the underdogs in the playoffs. The path to winning for two years now since i am doing this. It´s easy money. :)
 
FoxxyBrown1111 said:
What a mess in the end. I mean the non-calls.
And where are the good old blow-outs? I am not convinced that SB-Defenses can´t hold a big lead for ten straight years. It´s very dubious. Very. :mad:

I think i´ll do the next season as this one: Skip the regular season, and bet the underdogs in the playoffs. The path to winning for two years now since i am doing this. It´s easy money. :)
I know you mean the non-PI calls against Smith defending Crabtree. Those will not be settled by any discussion here or anywhere. But we can take the edge off a bit. First, been there done that... I mean I've seen my team on the bad end of SB officiating, as have other teams. So for the SF fans, I can empathize. Second, there are a few officials who might call PI, but I think most would not for several reasons. The holding started inside the 5 yard allowed area, but continued beyond the 5 yards. After that, here's what I think happened: some official had his hand on the flag but stuffed it back in his pocket after seeing Crabtree give a push off on Smith's helmet. I don't have a link, but look at the replay in slow motion. At normal speed, I was thinking 'Why did Smith fall down?' It was a shove to Smith's helmet by Crabtree that caused Smith to go down. That shove may have resulted in the non-call on that final play. That shove was either incidental or out of frustration, but in the end they call them both (the grab by Smith and the shove by Crab) incidental.

As for SB defences, I will comment only on this game. I cannot stress enough how important the DLinemen are to the linebackers. DLinemen that get blown back 2 or 3 yards cut off the paths of the LBs to the ball. But DLineman who are able to hold gaps creates space for the LBs to flow to the ball. BAL lost Ngata to injury during the game. Up to that point, the BAL D was able to stop the SF running game. But after Ngata was lost SFs running game got going, which took pressure off Kaep and helped the SF passing game. Then fatigue began to set in on the BAL defense. So that is why I think the BAL defense could not hold the lead. I would not call that dubious. But it is the way it goes sometimes.
 
Finally around to giving comments. I was at a huge party last night watching.

I have to agree with on@ar@my on the last call. I don't think I would have thrown a flag. It's a tough call for the 49ers to eat, but to me, with the mostly hands-off way the officials had been calling the game, it was the consistent call to (not) make. To me, the bigger question is with three downs that close to the end zone, why did the 49ers throw three traditional passes like that? I would have run Gore off a spread option on 3rd down. Ngata was out, and Gore had been moving through the line a lot. Even if he doesn't get in, he's likely to get to the 2 or 1 yard line, giving them more options. And no effort was made to read option or run Kaepernick. Just one roll out (to the short side of the field).

As to the game, I'm not 100% sure the better team won; but the most efficient and consistent team team won. The Ravens made very few mistakes, if any. Very few penalties. When they got going on drives they got into the end zone. They couldn't stop the Niners all night, but did when they had to. And they had a few balls bounce their way, and a few dropped balls and small mistakes by SF. That was the difference. And in the end the Ravens deserved to win because of that. And maybe that does make them the better team.

It's going to be a long flight home for the 49ers, with a bitter pill to swallow, but they have to know they have a lot of potential in the future, and accept they could have won the game and learn from it.

Happy for Joe Flacco. I knew he had it in him, and he deserved that MVP award.

I thought Beyonce was hot and that whole half-time show was great. Agree also on Alicia Keys. Beautiful in every way.

As to next season, I would be surprised if the Ravens come close to repeating. They may be one of those SB winners who don't make the playoffs. But they are well coached, obviously. The 49ers, if they can overcome this, have to like their chances in the future. The biggest NFC threat they may have though is in their own division, where an equally young, deep and tough Seattle team is on the rise.

So, that's all I have for now. This year's combine, pro-day and draft is going to be one of the weakest in years, and generate nowhere near the excitement as last season, but I'll be here to write about it anyway. The off-season trades, and signings should help keep the conversation going, if only a little bit. Realistically, the spring classics through the Tour are cycling. But the rest of the year is football to me. :)
 
Jun 19, 2009
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on3m@n@rmy said:
I know you mean the non-PI calls against Smith defending Crabtree. Those will not be settled by any discussion here or anywhere. But we can take the edge off a bit. First, been there done that... I mean I've seen my team on the bad end of SB officiating, as have other teams. So for the SF fans, I can empathize. Second, there are a few officials who might call PI, but I think most would not for several reasons. The holding started inside the 5 yard allowed area, but continued beyond the 5 yards. After that, here's what I think happened: some official had his hand on the flag but stuffed it back in his pocket after seeing Crabtree give a push off on Smith's helmet. I don't have a link, but look at the replay in slow motion. At normal speed, I was thinking 'Why did Smith fall down?' It was a shove to Smith's helmet by Crabtree that caused Smith to go down. That shove may have resulted in the non-call on that final play. That shove was either incidental or out of frustration, but in the end they call them both (the grab by Smith and the shove by Crab) incidental.

As for SB defences, I will comment only on this game. I cannot stress enough how important the DLinemen are to the linebackers. DLinemen that get blown back 2 or 3 yards cut off the paths of the LBs to the ball. But DLineman who are able to hold gaps creates space for the LBs to flow to the ball. BAL lost Ngata to injury during the game. Up to that point, the BAL D was able to stop the SF running game. But after Ngata was lost SFs running game got going, which took pressure off Kaep and helped the SF passing game. Then fatigue began to set in on the BAL defense. So that is why I think the BAL defense could not hold the lead. I would not call that dubious. But it is the way it goes sometimes.
Speaking as a Seattle fan who had to watch a Super Bowl given to Pittsburgh these calls weren't as bad as recent games. The possible PI call against Smith was visible from a video angle the Official's couldn't see. Tough but how it worked out.
 
No, this game's no call was nothing like Superbowl XL between Pitt-Sea. Keep in mind that a few years after that game, Bill Levey, the head referee, and his team admitted they affected the outcome of the game with their poor officiating on that day.

"It was a tough thing for me. I kicked two calls in the fourth quarter and I impacted the game, and as an official you never want to do that. It left me with a lot of sleepless nights, and I think about it constantly. I'll go to my grave wishing that I'd been better."

I'd also argue the calls in XLIII (Steelers-Cardinals) were considerably worse than this year.

This year had a couple of questionable no calls. But the referees were consistent and did not affect the outcome of the game. SF fans may argue - and remember I was cheering for the Niners - but there really is no controversy as I see it.
 
Speaking as a Niner fan, I won't complain about no holding call on Crabtree, because the Niners got away with something very similar against Atlanta, when Bowman broke up the pass to Roddy White on the five yard line. That incomplete pass ended the Falcons' season about as certainly as the incomplete pass to Crabtree. Also, judging where the pass ended up, even if Crabtree had not been held up, it would have been a tough chance, catching it and staying in bounds.

I agree with Alpe that they probably should have tried at least one running play. Or at least throw the ball to someone besides Crab, who obviously is going to be well covered. I mean, all three of those incomplete passes were thrown to him. And as Alpe said, even if a run doesn't get into the EZ, you get closer, which makes it a little easier for the next play.

You can find lots of key mistakes and questionable calls that cost the Niners, but in the end I think it came down to Justin Smith. The defense was never the same after he was injured, even when he came back. They gave up uncharacteristically huge totals of yards and points in the first half of each one of their postseason games. Much has been written about how surprisingly vulnerable the secondary was, but a healthy Justin Smith means the other Smith gets more pressure on the QB-as onthree said about Ngata. One of the downsides of a deep passing game, that was so important to the Ravens, is that the QB is more vulnerable to sacks. There were a couple of times when Flacco was back there all day, running away from pass rushers. That should not happen.

The defense did manage to play better in the second half each time, allowing the offense to bail them out, but against the Ravens it finally caught up to them, helped a lot, of course, by that kickoff return. When a team known for its defense, with half the players on that side of the ball in the Pro Bowl, puts up nearly 5OO yards of offense and thirty points, they're supposed to win.

Kaepernick is disappointed, but he shouldn't be. He had a rocky first half, but for the most part played really well, for the third postseason game in a row. Even in his SB years, Montana didn't always play consistently well in the postseason, e.g., 5 picks in two NFC playoff games en route to the Miami blowout. And when Joe played poorly, the defense often bailed him out. In all three of the postseason games, Kaepernick was faced with the pressure of having to put up a lot of points on the board to win. He did it twice, and came very close the third time. Great future for him.
 
Jun 15, 2009
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So much about "Defense wins championships"... Yet another year with 60+ points scored in the SB, defenses unable to hold leads, finally going into desperation mood: BAL big blitzing and praying that it works (which did with a little help from the refs); should be called the "Defense-hail-mary". ;)

Anyway, one more year that a "running QB" couldn´t prevail Merckx. And also another year where a 9/10-Team wins the SB.

But to be honest, at least BAL played championship ball in the playoffs, not like the NYG depending on luck only.

Looking forward next playoffs. My early pick is Cleveland Browns (after going 9-7) beating the 10-6 SL Rams in the SB by a score of 37-34.
 
Alpe d'Huez said:
So, that's all I have for now. This year's combine, pro-day and draft is going to be one of the weakest in years, and generate nowhere near the excitement as last season, but I'll be here to write about it anyway. The off-season trades, and signings should help keep the conversation going, if only a little bit. Realistically, the spring classics through the Tour are cycling. But the rest of the year is football to me. :)
This year's draft will be weak at QB and RB, though there are a few bright spots. But nothing like 2012. This should make veterans like Alex Smith and Matt Flynn more highly sought after. WR does not have a lot of marquee players, but there are a few gems there, plus WR is deep... meaning teams could pick up a good WR in later rounds. Other than that the other positions look like:
- OL: good at G and T, weak at C
- TE: couple nice prospects there
- DE: loaded with talent
- DT: just about as loaded as DE
- LB: a few potential standouts, not as loaded as DL tho
- DB: kind of like WR... not many elites like the Tide's Milliner, but plenty of good talent

Anyway, this is definately not the year for most teams to be looking to draft a QB or RB, unless to improve depth.


Merckx index said:
Kaepernick is disappointed, but he shouldn't be...
Agree, he should not be down on himself. Kaep played pretty well overall. He is definately one of those QBs who can lead a team to a SB victory. Disappointment is understandable though. NFC West is going to be very tough & interesting for the next decade. Including the Rams, who are on the rise.
 
FoxxyBrown1111 said:
Looking forward next playoffs. My early pick is Cleveland Browns (after going 9-7) beating the 10-6 SL Rams in the SB by a score of 37-34.
I like it! I'm going to go with Seattle over Texas, 38-30.

Agree there are two seasons. The first season which is where you watch great games. Then there's the tournament, where teams try to peak at the right time, and hope some lucky balls bounce their way.

As to the draft, I agree with on@rmyman that we're looking at a draft of linemen, mostly on defense. I'm curious to see if KC trades the top pick away. They badly need OL help, and also need a better pass rush, and DBs, and a better QB than Cassell. But do you go for that on the #1 pick? It can't really be Geno Smith, can it? Bleacher Report says they'll take Luke Joeckel, OT from Texas A&M. He's as good as Matt Kalil, and look what he did for AP in Minnesota.

Bleacher Report also has Philly taking Geno with the 4th pick, as he could fit into a Chip Kelly system. Then, who gets Nick Foles, who played well down the stretch? I also find interesting that they see Arizona taking Tyler Wilson at 7. A year ago I said he was future NFL QB material, but to start on week 1? The Cardinals have Kolb, Hoyer, Skelton and Lindley already. Would TW really be better than that? That's a lot to place hope on. I like Arizona dumping some guys and trying to get Alex Smith. With Alex you'd at least get an accurate passer with a lot of experience. Something Kolb never really was. But AZ also needs OL help. BR also has Mike Glennon to go to Buffalo, to replace Ryan Fitzpatrick. Glannon is big with a big arm, two things Ryan wasn't.

But if you look at any mock draft from top to bottom, it's mostly in the trenches where teams will look to pick from early.

I still like and see Michael Vick playing for the Jets. That's his destiny.
 
Alpe's right this year's draft day tactics could be interesting. Rather than teams scrambling to trade up to get an elite player, they may be scrambling to trade down. Luke Joeckel (Jr) is the best LT in the draft, and maybe then Michigan LT Taylor Lewan (Jr). BUT 6'8" 309 lb Lewan has decided to stay at Michigan for his senior season to chase a NC. That will make Luke Joeckel that much more coveted, since arguably the next best LT will be lined up for Michigan next year. Joeckel has all the draft experts (McShay, Kiper, Brandt) drooling:

ESPN’s Todd McShay has Joeckel as his No. 2 overall prospect:
Joeckel fared well against the likes of Alabama and LSU this season. His balance and ability to recover in pass protection stand out, and he takes good angles and is able to get to the second level in the run game.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper has Joeckel third:
Joeckel has the ability to take away good pass-rushers. There’s very little to not like. He has a ton of experience, starting on the left since his freshman season. He can really drive people in the run game, even if he gets questions on how nasty he is as a finisher. The feeling now is he’s a safe bet to be the first OT taken.
Gil Brandt of NFL.com has Joeckel ranked as his top prospect:
Joeckel is the same type of player as Jake Long, who was taken with the No. 1 overall pick by the Dolphins in 2008. A junior, Joeckel has great size and athletic ability, as well as really good hand placement.
LINK TO QUOTES

[rabbit trail... tho Kiper's image as expert took a bit of a hit after his rant against Jon Gruden about how Wilson would not make it as an NFL QB. That left me thinking Mel knows facts and figures, but not so much about players]

Interesting discussion points you bring up about the Cards QB situation. Makes sense for the CARDS to try for Smith (or Flynn), but do you think 9ers or Hawks would trade their #2 QB to a conference rival? Mehhh, maybe if the Cards gave up a fair amount extra to get either one of them. But b/c they are a conference rival I have a hunch that won't happen. If I was Arizona I would work on the OL with this draft and wait another year to draft a QB, unless they can get a QB by trade or free agency. Then in that case I'd still focus on the OL in this draft.

The rest of what you say is true, and makes me feel this coming free agent/draft period is so much more unsettled than last year with all the new head coaches and QB situations, and add to that lack of abundant quality QB talent in the draft. Whereas last year we could almost predict where all the top QB draft prospects would go. Buckle up!
 
Jun 22, 2009
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My first humble contribution to keeping this topic alive during the dead season is to ask my incredible knowledgeable and well informed friends here the following two questions: -

Is Flacco now "elite" on the basis of his post season, SB and MVP?

If so, is he 'worth', and should he get 20m? (Not that anyone should get amounts like that.....)

This is gonna be a horrible and long off season for me......:eek:
 
on3m@n@rmy said:
[rabbit trail... tho Kiper's image as expert took a bit of a hit after his rant against Jon Gruden about how Wilson would not make it as an NFL QB.]
Kiper is a tool, even by ESPN standards, and they are filled with them there.

Interesting discussion points you bring up about the Cards QB situation. Makes sense for the CARDS to try for Smith (or Flynn), but do you think 9ers or Hawks would trade their #2 QB to a conference rival?
It's an interesting situation because both are paid well, under low-guarantee contracts. Meaning the teams can trade them, release them, or push other teams to pay a premium for them in a sign and trade deal. But Alex should not sit next season. You don't put up the numbers he did this season and sit on the bench. That doesn't mean he'll be great, but he's better than half the starting QB's in the league right now. That translates into a starting job. My guesses are KC, AZ, Buffalo, NYJ, or Jax, in that order. One could argue Minnesota, Philly, Oakland, and a few others could play fish too. Good link to Smith and Flynn's situations. We'll know more after March 12.

Amsterhammer said:
Is Flacco now "elite" on the basis of his post season, SB and MVP?
Define "elite". If forced to say yes/no, I'll say yes. If I were to rank QB's I'd say his stock was previously too low, lower even than Foxxy and I were saying. But it may quickly get higher than he's worth. I'd still rank him behind Rodgers, Brady, Brees, and maybe Ryan and PM. But higher than Eli, Stafford, and whomever else you want to put next (Kaepernick? RG3? Wilson? Big Ben? Rivers? Luck?).

If so, is he 'worth', and should he get 20m?
Nope. I don't think any QB is worth that much, same as you. No player is. And a QB, while the team leader, is still 1/11 on offense. I'm pretty sure PM makes something like $19m this year, which is too high. But you also have to think in terms of relativity. Michael Vick was paid something like $15m this year. Carson Palmer were paid about $13m. He should make more than those overpaid guys, right? Eli was paid $13m, how does Flacco compare to him? Better? But Brady makes $9.75m, and Rodgers $8m. Should Flacco make more than them?

This is gonna be a horrible and long off season for me.
Why? Your hero will heal and be back, and if it takes a bit, you have one of the most promising young backups in the league in Cousins. As to the wait and off-season, last year we did pretty good. I actually find the time between now and the draft refreshing. We get to see the future of the sport and with it hope and promise, as opposed to dwelling on retiring players with broken bodies and lawsuits. I like following the combine and pro days for players, and Gruden will be back again with his QB camp and excellent scouting of players. I personally have a hard time being motivated during May-July, but that's what the Giro and Tour are for. :)
 
I'll bite. Agree on everything Alpe just posted. And Kiper... LOL. He got schooled.

Good link on the "backup" QB situations (Flynn & Smith). And the comments were interesting too.

To pad what Alpe said on Flacco, I too would now tag him as elite but not at the same level as Brady, Rogers, Brees, & maybe Ryan. But how can he not be tagged elite? Just look at his postseason ranking... the best at 117.2:
(postseason link)
1. Joe Flacco............117.2
2. Matt Ryan.............105.2
3. Russell Wilson......102.4
4. Colin Kaepernick...100.9
5. Aaron Rodgers......97.6
6. Peyton Manning....88.3
7. Matt Schaub.........87.5
8. Tom Brady...........84.7
9. Robert Griffin III....77.5
10. Andrew Luck......59.8

But I would not put him atop the heap. For me, that is my intuition speaking. But here is what the regular season QB rankings show:
(regular season link)
1. Aaron Rodgers......108.0
2. Peyton Manning.....105.8
3. Robert Griffin III......102.4
4. Russell Wilson......100.0
5. Matt Ryan..............99.1
6. Tom Brady............98.7
7. Roethlisberger.......97.0
8. Drew Brees...........96.3
9. Matt Schaub..........90.7
10. Tony Romo.........90.5
11. Philip Rivers.........88.6
12. Joe Flacco...........87.7
13. Andy Dalton.........87.4
14. Eli Manning.........87.2

The $$$ his agent thinks he should get (highest paid QB in the NFL) is nuts. I would not pay him that kind of cash. I don't know how in good conscience Flacco can ask to be highest paid. But I heard him say he thinks he IS the best QB. I really don't know if he genuinely believes that or if he's just posturing. On game day, yeah sure, he has to think that. But REALLY when it comes to contracts?

And how much is enough? How much does one dude need? I'd take a reasonable amount less money if it helped the team stay under the salary cap and be able to sign some other good talent. Lots of NFL players have done that, but some won't. Well, I think I beat that horse dead.

In other news I'm hearing Vick may well stay an Eagle. Could just be opinion more than fact at this point. ...link
 
Dec 7, 2010
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I should have posted before just after the superbowl.
ChrisE you and other Football mensa's on this site were wrong about the 49ers. Not that I am happy you was wrong but ....you were wrong.

I was very happy that the cry baby and his team lost. Crybaugh was slobbering on himself during the game ...jerking the head set off and screaming/slobbering like a coyote in heat. I wish nothing but ill to the 49ers and their disgusting fans. Their fans are almost as bad as the SFgiants fans...almost not quite. Anyhow great game loser's and I hope for the upcoming season nothing but doom to ya.:eek:
 
Jun 15, 2009
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Amsterhammer said:
My first humble contribution to keeping this topic alive during the dead season is to ask my incredible knowledgeable and well informed friends here the following two questions: -

Is Flacco now "elite" on the basis of his post season, SB and MVP?

If so, is he 'worth', and should he get 20m? (Not that anyone should get amounts like that.....)

This is gonna be a horrible and long off season for me......:eek:
Flacco was always elite, as at least 90 other QB´s are in the NFL. That includes all starters, backups and practise squad QB´s minus those who made it to the NFL, but no one of us knows why (like for example Charlie Frye).

All that pre SB "elite talk" in the USA was absurd nonsense. As if a superbowl ring is needed to be elite. What can a good, so-called "elite", QB do if he is surrounded by average receivers and OL-Men? Nothing. OTOH, all NFL QB´s (outside of those described above) can throw, read defenses and have the ability to lead an offense. That is obvious, otherwise they would have been sorted out well before college.

Even in the decadent NFL-World, 20 million dollars per year is wayyy too much for any NFL player when the (at least almost) same talented backups earn the minimum salary. Anyway that´s a social problem of the USA, where only the (lucky) "leaders"/"winners" get paid extraordinary money, while the rest has to "suffer". It´s a ill system which has spread over the world... Ugh!

Why "horrible off season"? It´s cycling time. A clean sport with much drama. Jokes aside, i look forward the great grand tours....
 
Hahaha. Foxxy, did you just graduate from Lager to Liquor and just finish your first ever bottle of tequila with limes? ;)

Ok, I'll let your elite stance stand if you have your favorite NFL team take on Matt Leinart and Kellen Moore as the #1 and #2 QBs (not necessarily in that order), and I'll even throw in Tebow to be sporting. Deal? :eek:

Clean sport my eye. Getting cleaner, yes.

(notice I did not contest the social issue?)
 
Good day football fans. The NFL Combine starts this weekend (really, yesterday, but that was off-limits to media and outsiders). Here's a good link on NFL.com. What might make this year good is that every key draftee (sans Matt Barkley) should be there, unlike last year when Luck and RG3 chose not to participate because they were so hot anyway, and just waited until their pro day.

For those marking their calendars, teams pro days start in early March, school by school.

March 9 is when contract negotiations can start, and on March 12th all ending contracts expire and the frenzy to get free players (or make trades) begins.

The NFL Draft is on April 25th.

Let the off season fun begin! :)
 
Now we're talking. Great news and thanks for the links Alpe. One quote on the NFL.com link you shared was this:
» Reid, meanwhile, put a sale sign on the Kansas City Chiefs' No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. Expect a lot of teams to look into moving down in this deep draft. Few teams will want to move up.
I agree that at some positions teams will definately want to move down. But there are a few positions that are deep but without many elite players. WR is one. Teams in need of WR may be tempted to move up to grab one of the higher rated guys. But if there are not many teams wanting to move up, then a team wanting to move up may not have to give up quite as much (as they would if there were a lot of teams clammoring for someone). So, put another way, there could be opportunities for moving up if most other teams prefer to move down. One thing's for sure, this draft's dynamics are completely different from last year.
 

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