Wednesday, October 24, 2012

QB Power Rankings – Week 7

1. Robert Griffin III (1) [  ]
            RGIII didn't come away with a victory in his 1st divisional game, but he earned the respect of the New York Giants, and hopefully, the rest of the football world. Griffin made a few mistakes, but he made huge plays in critical moments of the game, and made what should have been the game winning play late in the game. Had he made a real mistake late in the game, maybe I would drop him, but he made the plays that mattered when they mattered, and it's not his fault some others didn't.

2. Peyton Manning (2) [  ]
            Bye week.

3. Aaron Rodgers (5) [ ʌ ]
            Aaron Rodgers is unreal. He was pinpoint accurate, made a couple plays with his feet, extended plays, and made throws no quarterback should make and that very few can. The reigning MVP is making his case for a repeat performance.

4. Eli Manning (3) [ v ]
            Eli won, he bested the Redskins with a late 77-yard bomb to Victor Cruz for a TD. But he didn't play so spectacular all game. He missed a lot of open throws throughout the game, and threw a critical INT late in the game, but he made the one throw that mattered at the end.

5. Matt Ryan (4) [ v ]
            Bye week.

6. Drew Brees (9) [ ʌ ]
            Did you see what Drew Breesus did? Did you see his first half? Literally the majority of quarterbacks this season have struggled to do what Brees did in one half in 2-3 whole games.

7. Tom Brady (6) [ v ]
            Brady didn't play his best game, but it was a good game nonetheless.

8. Ben Roethlisberger (10) [ ʌ ]
            Ben threw an INT, and lost a fumble... but he made a lot of solid throws, and a couple of his incomplete passes were drops, and he still managed to post a 73 completion percentage. That's what you call good.

9. Matt Schaub (7) [ v ]
            Schaub picked apart a severely depleted Ravens' defense and did exactly what the Texans need him to do. Take what the defense offers and get easy points, make safe throws, and let the rungame do it's work. Schaub is more than just a game manager, but making his job easier makes his play look even more respectable. This is the Schaub the Texans need week after week.

10. Jay Cutler (11) [ ʌ ]
            Jay Cutler didn't have eye-popping numbers, and the Bears didn't take unnecessary risks with him after he bruised his ribs. But he made plays with his feet and made the Lions defense look as bad as he possibly could save for a few good plays but their very good players. There's weren't any critical mistakes either.

11. Brandon Weeden (12) [ ʌ ]
            The Browns lost, in large part due to the loss of HB Trent Richardson. But Weeden played yet another exceptional game and didn't make any big mistakes. He gave his team a chance to win and did so in a pressurized situation. Weeden has been playing very good recently.

12. Joe Flacco (8) [ v ]
            Taking sacks, throwing multiple INT's, constant getting his passes batted at the line of scrimmage on his way to less than 50% completion percentage. Flacco can't be Wacco, especially not now that Lewis and Webb are out on the defense. It's on Joe now to be better than he's ever been, especially when he thinks he's last year's Eli.

13. Andrew Luck (13) [  ]
            Luck was far from a prolific passer, but he added two big touchdowns on the ground on exceptional reads  and came away with the victory.

14. Tony Romo (17) [ ʌ ]
            Despite the INT's he has thrown over the last 3 games (0 this week), Romo has been completing a high percentage of passes. His turnovers ARE very bad choices though, and that's why he has fallen back in the pack. But this week, Romo did a lot to contribute to a victory and still doesn't have his receivers playing on the same page.

15. Alex Smith (15) [  ]
            This wasn't Smith's worst game, by far, but it was far from his best and far from what he's shown he's capable of since the start of last season. He's on a cold streak right now and he needs to turn it around soon.

16. Ryan Tannehill (16) [  ]
            Bye week.

17. Josh Freeman (19) [ ʌ ]
            Freeman had a very poor first half, but it's hard to compete with Drew Brees and the Saints during the first half they had Sunday. But Freeman's second half was tremendous, and he got his team as close as possible to coming back and tying the game as it gets without actually doing it. Freeman drove late in the game and hit what looked like the tying TD pass on a broken play, but the WR was ruled ineligible after stepping out of bounds.

18. Russell Wilson (18) [  ]
            Wilson can't follow a very good performance against the Patriots with the horrible performance he posted against the 49ers this week. He should be ashamed of himself, and needs to find a way to be consistently good. These aren't just rookie mistakes. He's making dumb plays for any level of football.

19. Christian Ponder (14) [ v ]
            This wasn't the Christian Ponder we saw earlier in the year. He's really struggling the past couple weeks, and Sunday's win over the Cardinals was anything but Ponder's doing.

20. Matthew Hasselbeck (23) ʌ ]
          Matt FINALLY didn't throw an interception. And the rebirth of Chris Johnson has made Hasselbeck's life easier. He had himself a good game, even if it was against an atrocious defense.

21. Andy Dalton (20) [ v ]
            Division losses are bad, especially when you play as absolutely average as you can. Every good play Dalton made had a horrible play to match it up. Every play. Dalton has to improve, especially in the division, if he wants to make something of himself in this league.

22. Mark Sanchez (27) [ ʌ ]
            Mark didn't play a horrible game against the Patriots. He actually had the team in it at the very end and in overtime, he had an opportunity to either tie or win the game. His entire O-Line botched in picking up the blitz and he got leveled and you can't really blame him for losing the ball there. He has to protect the ball better, but he's doing okay these past two weeks.

23. Carson Palmer (22) [ v ]
            I don't know what Palmer is doing. The Raiders won, in OT, against the Jaguars who lost Gabbert and Jones-Drew early. Sure, when that happens, not all of the blame goes on any one player... but Palmer's capable of so much better than this, and it's his responsibility to make more of this team than he has.

24. Kevin Kolb (21) [ v ]
            Didn't play. Skelton filled back in and didn't do anything himself.

25. Cam Newton (24) [ v ]
            A touchdown, and interception, a lost fumble, a chance to win it late and no connecting with his receivers (who did drop quite a few passes). Cam has to be better than this. He's blaming everyone but himself, but he's not making the plays with his feet that he made last year in order to give his team life. Memo: you've got wheels, use 'em. It's nice that you want to prove you can throw now, but you can still make plays with your feet.

26. Sam Bradford (26) [  ]
            Sam has to figure out what he's doing right now. He's not playing anything near his potential. There's no way he can miss Danny Amendola THIS much.

27. Philip Rivers (25) [ v ]
            Bye week.

28. Ryan Fitzpatrick (29) [ ʌ ]
            Lost fumble, INT... yet he still played his best all-around game probably of the season.

29. Michael Vick (28) [ v ]
            Bye week.

30. Matt Stafford (30) [  ]
            This just isn't the same Matthew Stafford. Megatron dropped some catchable passes, sure... but Stafford is far from the level he was at a year ago when he posted 5,000 passing yards.

31. Blaine Gabbert (31) [  ]
            Got hurt early. Wasn't underwhelming while in the game, but wasn't doing anything of note.

32. Matt Cassel (32) [  ]
            Bye week.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

QB Power Rankings – Week 6

Rankings are based on previous week’s ranking in addition to how the player has played to this point throughout the season. This isn’t a ranking based solely on this week alone.

1. Robert Griffin III (4) [ ʌ ]
            That's right, there's a new king here on this list, and it comes in the form of the Washington Redskins' rookie phenom, RGIII. Griffin is 3rd in the league in QB Rating, but is currently first in the league with 70.6% of his passes completed. He's not throwing all over the place and posting TD's, but he's compensating on the ground where he's 2nd in the LEAGUE in scoring.

2. Peyton Manning (6) [ ʌ ]
            Peyton Manning is second in the league in passing yards. He's second in the league in QB Rating. He's tied for 2nd in passing TD's. He's 4th in the league in completion percentage. Say what you will, but Peyton isn't washed up or done. This man is getting back into the swing of things, and his second half the other night was one of the greatest halves of football ever. The Sheriff is back!

3. Eli Manning (7) [ ʌ ]
            Eli didn't have an amazing game, and it was the worst game by any QB who has beaten the 9ers this year... but Eli beat the 9ers and didn't make any critical mistakes.

4. Matt Ryan (1) [ v ]
            I'm bumping Ryan because, of all the players in the top 10 on this list last week, he's one the ones who really bothered me the most with his performance, and he's been struggling the past couple weeks to play well for full games.

5. Aaron Rodgers (12) [ ʌ ]

6. Tom Brady (5) [ v ]
            Following what he did against Denver, you'd expect Tom Brady to continue to perform at a very high level. And maybe Brady is "one man" as Richard Sherman expressed, but he's got to do more for his team than he was able to do.

7. Matt Schaub (3) [ v ]
            Schaub has to play a lot smarter than he did against the Packers. It's not like this is the Packers defense of the 2010 season. I know it's not easy for anyone to respond to Rodgers when he plays the way he did, but you at least have to try.

8. Joe Flacco (8) [  ]
            Although he only posted one touchdown, Flacco played a solid game against the Cowboys who came to play as well.

9. Drew Brees (9) [  ]
            Bye week.

10. Ben Roethlisberger (2) [ v ]
            Ben didn't win, and didn't look impressive.

11. Jay Cutler (15) [ ʌ ]
            Bye week.

12. Brandon Weeden (18) [ ʌ ]
            2 TD's helped the Browns get a division win against the Bengals. Good decisions, good numbers, strong victory.

13. Andrew Luck (10) [ v ]
            Luck followed up his best game with one of his worst.

14. Christian Ponder (14) [  ]
            Ponder wasn't horrible against the Skins, but he wasn't good, and definitely not playing as hard as he normally would (where were the wheels?).

15. Alex Smith (11) [ v ]
            Bad Alex back.

16. Ryan Tannehill (20) [ ʌ ]
            Big game from Ryan against a tough St. Louis defense. He got the win with 2 TD's, no INT's on 72% completions.

17. Tony Romo (27) [ ʌ ]
            Dez Bryant catches that ball, Tony may have the victory over Baltimore. He played a helluva game coming off of the bye week.

18. Russell Wilson (25) [ ʌ ]
            Russell Wilson beat Tom Brady with a late-game bomb TD that wasn't controversial. 3 TD's, 290 yards, 0 INT's on 59.3% completions. It wasn't the greatest game every, but it was good enough to help him move up this list.

19. Josh Freeman (26) [ ʌ ]
            326 yards, 3 TD's and 1 INT. But he scored when it mattered to help his team continue to build a lead against the Chiefs and come out victorious.

20. Andy Dalton (16) [ v ]
            Take away the 3 INT's, and Dalton played a very good game. But you can't take away those 3 INT's, and he played a terrible game in a losing effort to division-rival Cleveland.

21. Kevin Kolb (17) [ v ]
            Bad display from Kolb. Horrible decisions, bad throws, and nothing to fall back on in a loss.

22. Carson Palmer (19) [ v ]
            Carson was having a very good day against the Falcons. Posting big numbers. But he made a horrible decision... a costly decision, that led to an Asante Samuel (we all know this one because it happens a couple times every year) INT return for a TD off a lazy read/route/throw. A win without that INT would have really boosted Palmer's standing here... amazing what one bad throw can do to you.

23. Matthew Hasselbeck (28) ʌ ]
            He's getting worse every week, but he got the win with a lot of help from Chris Johnson who came out of retirement against the Steelers.

24. Cam Newton (22) [ v ]
            Bye week.

25. Philip Rivers (13) [ v ]
            One of the worst performances all year. Rivers goes up huge at halftime, comes out flat and taking dumb risks with a lead trying to pad his stats. Thankfully for the fans, the Broncos padded their stats instead. Rivers further showing people why I say he's not even a top 12 QB in this league.

26. Sam Bradford (23) [ v ]
            Bradford had a rushing TD, good completion percentage, but there was nothing posted in the passing score column and he absorbed too many sacks. Bradford's much better than this, or at least he's advertised to be. He sure does miss Danny Amendola.

27. Mark Sanchez (29) [ ʌ ]
            82 yards, on 11 of 18 passing, but 2 TD's and a win sure helps make those numbers look a little more respectable. 3 rushing TD's out of Shonn Greene helped a lot, but can't knock the hustle.

28. Michael Vick (21) [ v ]
            Vick cut down on the fumbles... only to turn the INT's back up. Through 6 games, Mike Vick has 13 turnovers. He can't blame the flack jacket for the dumb throws. The Eagles DID ask him to throw 46 times, and Andy Reid is as stubborn as ever when you've got a running back who can be one of the best RUNNERS in the league out there... but Vick's still got to protect the ball, especially in close games.

29. Ryan Fitzpatrick (24) [ v ]
            Fitzpatrick isn't the answer at QB for the Bills. They need to treat him like every other marginally good QB they had and get rid of him. There's no excuse for him to be playing this bad this many games in a row. He got the win, but it was more on his team coming to play than it was him showing up to do something.

30. Matt Stafford (30) [  ]
            It's hard to show Stafford any respect with 48% completion, even if he did get the win. Maybe the Madden curse is hunting the wrong person in the same locker room.

31. Blaine Gabbert (32) [  ]
            Bye week.

32. Matt Cassel (33) [  ]
            Didn't play.

Not like my old days....

Football is king on America. However, a lot of it has changed. Players are bigger & faster, coverage is 24/7, and the Super Bowl has become one of the top-viewed events around the globe. However, some things are going away that added to the charm of the game. I think that by the time my son is 20 (he's 5 now), certain things I saw will be nonexistent. They are....

1. Natural grass fields

AstroTurf  was always a favorite sight of mine whenever the Redskins played a road game at the Giants, Eagles, and Cowboys. But nothing compared to natural, well-manicured playing grass. All of the grass stains, games played in the mud (RFK "seat cushion game"), and Super Bowl games played on a picture-perfect bed of green blades. AstroTurf would get the much overdue boot due to the toll knees and ankles took from playing on them, and FieldTurf was invented. While it is infinitely better than AstroTurf, it takes away the visual of seeing uniforms caked in dirt, mud, and grass. Yes, FedEx Field's surface takes a beating, but maybe it means calling a new turf farm or installing a new drainage system. Call it a silly complaint, but i love seeing grass fields. 

2. Open roof stadiums

Maybe not all 32 stadiums, but there are currently 9 stadiums that are either domed or have a retractable roof. Some older stadiums I expect to stay with tradition and keep the open-air experience (Lambeau, Soldier), but some cities have venues that will soon need to be replaced. Super Bowl bids are important, and the new retractable roof stadiums are a nice bargaining tool. A lot of Redskins fans feel the next stadium will feature it, but I hope not. Football is meant to be played in the elements.

3. 16-game season

More games that count means more money for the league. As for the players? More risk of injury. The game is already faster and the players are bigger & stronger. Lord knows the physical specimens that will be around in 2027, but I doubt they'll be able to hold up to an 18-game regular season for the 3 1/2 years an average NFL player does nowadays. I hope these NFL contracts become fully guaranteed soon. For  a multi billion dollar machine, long-term player safety is still in preseason mode for the most part.

Oh yeah: Sean Bishop for NFL Commissioner

Friday, October 12, 2012

QB Power Rankings – Week 5

Rankings are based on previous week’s ranking in addition to how the player has played to this point throughout the season. This isn’t a ranking based solely on this week alone.

1. Matt Ryan (1) [  ]
            Matt Ryan looked a little less invincible against the Redskins, and threw an INT which resulted in a Washington defensive TD. But he also found a way to hang in there, threw a bunch, didn't get support on the deep ball, and still posted very good numbers. Hard to knock him, especially when nobody else has been as consistent.

2. Ben Roethlisberger (4) [ ʌ ]
            Ben rises during his bye week on account of others not performing well at all.

3. Matt Schaub (2) [ v ]
            There were some struggles vs. the Jets, and most of them were the WR's, not the QB. Schaub was delivering the ball well, making good reads, keeping plays alive, and his targets let him down.

4. Robert Griffin III (3) [ v ]
            Griffin got knocked out cold making a bad decision to run with the football in a game that may have been a lot different in Billy Cundiff wasn't one of the worst field goal kickers in Redskins history. He didn't perform amazingly well, but he didn't do a lot to get himself knocked out of the top 5 either.

5. Tom Brady (5) [  ]
            Brady came out and played a solid game against the Broncos. It wasn't anything spectacular on his behalf, which is why he won't jump, but he played a solid game.

6. Peyton Manning (8) [ ʌ ]
            Say what you will about Peyton. Oh, he's washed up. He doesn't have it anymore. Well, 75% completion and a pretty damned good effort on a comeback against the Patriots with two costly turnovers that had nothing to do with 18 tells me Peyton still has SOMETHING left in the tank.

7. Eli Manning (9) [ ʌ ]
             You talk about a response? Eli responded with a HUGE game, albeit against the Browns, and he did it with by pulling out a win from behind.

8. Joe Flacco (6) [ v ]
            On top of others rising and his poor performance against the Chiefs, Flacco can't stay put. Time to drop some.

9. Drew Brees (13) [ ʌ ]
            Brees came out and played inspired football all game long against his former team on a night where he broke Johnny Unitas' record of most consecutive games played with a touchdown pass. He came away with the Saints' first win on the season as well.

10. Andrew Luck (15) [ ʌ ]
            If there's anything we learned about Andrew Luck this week, it's that he's a leader, and he can flat out ball when it matters the most. This game told specifically why Luck was the 1st overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

11. Alex Smith (16) [ ʌ ]
            75% completions, 3 TD's, 300+ yards... Alex Smith played a helluva game and got a huge boost in his stock.

12. Aaron Rodgers (14) [ ʌ ]
            Rodgers did everything he could to win the game, but he had an INT that could have been the difference in the game, and you just can't hate on what Luck did.

13. Philip Rivers (11) [ v ]
            A couple horrible plays from teammates, some dumb penalties, and Rivers' 2 turnovers did nothing to generate any traction.

14. Christian Ponder (10) [ v ]
            Ponder has had a bad game and a very mediocre game after rising high up on the rankings early. His 2 TD's were a big deal, he threw a high completion percentage on 35 throws, but he did have 2 INT's even though the Vikings won with a comfortable margin.

15. Jay Cutler (17) [ ʌ ]
            Jay didn't have the greatest game, threw another INT, but had 2 TD's and some yards. A lot of incomplete passes, but the Bears handled Jacksonville with ease.

16. Andy Dalton (7) [ v ]
            Following a very good game against the Redskins, Dalton responded with a devastating loss in Miami and played a very poor game.

17. Kevin Kolb (12) [ v ]
            The game against the Rams was terrible, especially following a near-loss to Miami. If Kolb wants to keep his job, this isn't the way to do it. None of the reads were precise, he wasn't scanning the field, and he wasn't making plays.

18. Brandon Weeden (22) [ ʌ ]
            The 2 INT's were costly. Weeden can't throw those picks if he wants to win and make a statement. He also had 2 TD's and had his team competitive for most of the game until Eli responded with a huge second half.

19. Carson Palmer (25) [ ʌ ]
            Coming off a bye week.

20. Ryan Tannehill (21) [ ʌ ]
            Ryan didn't do much of anything in the win.

21. Michael Vick (19) [ v ]
            2 TD's, no INT's... but 3 fumbles and 2 of them were lost in a loss. Vick has to cut back on the turnovers. I don't care how good the Eagles might be around him, or how good he is at finishing games off in the 4th... this is a recipe for disaster and Vick won't be welcomed many places if he keeps this up.

22. Cam Newton (18) [ v ]
            Inconsistent… still. Lost fumble, no TD's, sacked repeatedly, horrible completion percentage... just an ugly loss and an ugly performance.

23. Sam Bradford (23) [  ]
            Considering it was the Cardinals, I'm impressed. And Sam did throw 2 TD's. But the INT and horrible completion percentage just aren't going to cut it.

24. Ryan Fitzpatrick (20) [ v ]
            Ever since the first half of the Patriots game... Fitzpatrick has been shameful at the QB position for the Bills.

25. Russell Wilson (27) [ ʌ ]
            He got the win, but it wasn't thanks to him. That defense did most of the work.

26. Josh Freeman (26) [  ]
            Still nothing to be impressed with. Freeman has to show some consistency, and he has to take his team to the next level. They gave him targets, he has to hit them.

27. Tony Romo (31) [ ʌ ]
            Coming off of the bye.

28. Matthew Hasselbeck (N/A)
            He's come in for Locker but hasn't played extremely well. He has matched his TD numbers every game with INT's. 

29. Matt Stafford (30) [ ʌ ]
            It's a far cry from 2011...

30. Mark Sanchez (29) [ v ]
            A loss, a horrible performance with 2 fumbles (0 lost) and 2 INT's.

31. Jake Locker (28) [ v ]
            Here I was growing fond of Jake Locker and he goes out with injury.

32. Blaine Gabbert (24) [ v ]
            Why even give this guy the benefit of the doubt for this one?

33. Matt Cassel (32) [ v ]
            Went down with injury but wasn't doing anything but costing his team anyways.