Things I Know:
Big yardage by a QB in a game is a bad sign. It is conventional wisdom that a big yardage game by a QB was a sign of a winning game. The last few years, it’s been the other way around. Look at the top QB yardages performances of the first three weeks. Top 3 out of 4 week 1, loss. Top 3 out of 4 week 2, loss. The top 5 (and 6 out of 7) of week 3, loss. There may be many reasons for this, but it’s been a building trend.
Big yardage by a running back is a good sign. Meanwhile, the opposite seems to continue to be true for running backs. The top 3 out of 4 week1, win. The top 3 out of 4 week 2, win. The top 4 out of 5 week 3, win. The hot topic lately has been “The NFL is a passing league.” It’s probably better said, “You need a top QB to pull out tough wins.” or something like that. Many will argue that these numbers are the result of being ahead in a game, but that’s not the point. Some teams don’t have a good enough running game to even “run out the clock” because of the focus on the passing game.
Carson Palmer is just not an elite QB. It’s done; there shouldn’t be an argument anymore. Up through the 2005 and 2006 seasons, Carson Palmer was commonly referred to as an up and coming QB that was on the cusp of being an elite QB. Sometimes Palmer was even outright called elite, sitting right behind Brady and Manning. But that seems like ages ago now. The elite QBs have all had multiple years with a QB passer rating above 100. All of them have a career QB rating above 90. Palmer? Only 2005 for above 100 and a career passer rating below 90. In 2006 Palmer had a 93.9, but since then he hasn’t even sniffed the 100 mark. This year he has talent around him again and he actually looks worse.
Things I think I know.
I think Green Bay needs another RB to have a chance to win it all. The Green Bay Packers were a common SuperBowl pick going into the season, but the loss of Ryan Grant may turn out bigger than it should have been. Brandon Jackson is a third down back that can’t carry the load full time. Kuhn is a good back, but is more of short yardage back. It’s almost like the Packers didn’t have a backup RB at all. Just three role players, full time back, third down back, short yardage back. Without a full time RB that can be depended on, the opposing defenses will just tee off on Aaron Rodgers every play. That offensive line isn’t good enough for that. They may still win the division or at least make the playoffs, but without a run game, how do they win in the playoffs?
I think Mike Vick has finally grown up. Everyone seems astonished that Mike Vick is throwing out of the pocket so well now. There is a specific reason. Word was that Mike Vick was lazy when it came to preparation and game film while in Atlanta. That he knew he was good enough to win purely by out-playing opponents and not out-thinking them. When he was out of football for a couple of years, he either was afraid of not having that edge or it finally got through to him that he had to be better prepared. Either way, it matured Vick that much to make him better. He looks this good because he knows what to expect now. Who knows if he’ll keep it up, but it makes sense considering what was being reported prior to him getting his chance.
I think it might be a while before Brett Favre is back to form. If it happens at all. Yes, the Viking won, but it was in spite of Brett’s play. Only one touchdown pass that looked overthrown to a wide open Percy Harvin. 2 INTs, 200 yards and a 68.4 passer rating. Peterson’s 160 yards rushing is what won the game. Hopefully for Viking’s fans Brett will improve as he gets more in sync with the receivers and Sidney Rice comes back after mid-season, but it wasn’t a comeback game for Brett. Long way to go, but still looking for that good game from Brett.
Things I know I don’t know.
KC can’t be this good, can they? It’s a long way out, we have 13 games left, but KC just can’t be this good. I mean, they added Thomas Jones and Eric Berry. They seem to have gotten a good players in the draft with Dexter McCluster and Tony Moeaki. Suddenly Tyson Jackson looks good and Dwayne Bowe is looking better. But really? I’m not a big Matt Cassell believer and I don’t see how this happened after last year’s performance. Some of Scott Pioli’s moves have confused most people and was supposed to be destined to fail. Yes, the AFC west is pretty mediocre if not just outright bad, but really?
What’s going on with kickers? It seems like kickers are missing more big kicks in the last few years than in the past. Or is it just a perspective thing. As the old war horses like Morten Anderson, John Carney, Jason Elam, and Gary Anderson fade off in the sunset, are the young bucks ready to step up? Guys like Nick Folk, Matt Prater, Garrett Hartley and Lawrence Tynes are supposed to be the next great line of kickers. But are they? I don’t see it, but hey, I don’t know for sure.
Will we have an undefeated team at 6-0 or beyond? Only three teams left. Pittsburgh faces Baltimore next week and would have to beat Miami to go 6-0. Kansas City faces Indy and Houston in its next two games. Chicago has the best shot with the Giants, Carolina and Seattle in the next three games. But the next two are road games and the Giants could be primed for a comeback win next week at home. Hmmm, maybe Chicago can do it; the next really tough games would be Minn and Miami to go 9-0 and 10-0.