Before we get to the games, I want to look at the reports out of Denver for a second. Word is that Josh McDaniels, the 32 year old offensive coordinator of the Patriots, is going to be named the new head coach. I have mixed feelings about this one. On one hand, I like that Denver wants to break into new blood to get some new ideas. I wish Cleveland had done the same thing. They also got a guy who is hot after turning a raw QB into a budding star. On the other hand, though, Bill Belichick has yet to really prove himself as a breeder of strong coaches. Far from it, in fact. Romeo Crennel got fired after creating a mess. Eric Mangini takes over that messing after failing in his first try. You can throw in the disaster that is Charlie Weis, too. The first coach after a legend like Shanahan is going to have it tough at the best of times, so I am not convinced that a young coach with a bad pedigree is a great gamble. A more established assistant might have been a better risk – especially since they are in a very winnable division.
Theoretically, the eight best teams in the league were left playing this weekend. It’s hard to believe that that is true given the ridiculous umber of turnovers we saw on Saturday. Tennessee and Carolina were pathetic. Ridiculous. The Giants weren’t much better. I understand that defenses are fired up for the playoffs, but offenses should be at least a little competent. That hasn’t been the case so far.
I will play as many games as starting quarterback for the Carolina Panthers in the rest of my life as Jake Delhomme will. Actually, my guess is that I might have an easier task in convincing them that I am worthy of playing for them than he will.
Road dogs were 3-1 ATS this weekend. Last weekend they were 0-4 ATS. Playoffs are not a time for trends.
I’ll say up front that I truly hate Eli Manning. Everything about him makes me slightly ill. More than that, really. That being said, though, I don’t feel like I am at all unjustified being as negative about him as I want to be. That was disgusting. Only Jake Delhomme made him look like more than the worst QB in the league. Manning made bad decisions, looked unfocused and shaken regularly, threw wobbly passes when he needed tght spirals, and made it easy for Philly’s secondary to shine. I have already said repeatedly since it hapened that his Pro Bowl berth was an absolute joke. I’ll go a step further – he may have a Super Bowl, but I am not at all convinced that he is the right guy to keep that team at the top and try to win another one. Nothing he did today was anywhere close to good enough for this league.
The Battle of Pennsylvania. Not my first choice a few weeks ago, but it has its share of intrigue. The league would be a heck of a lot happier about that one than Arizona and anyone.