Analyzing Three NFL QB Controversies

Can Tim Tebow save Denver's season? We'll find out on Sunday against Miami!

By Brian Willwerth 

We’re just past the one-month mark of the NFL season, and several teams are either changing their starting quarterbacks, or thinking about it.

Here’s a look at three such cases.

DENVER BRONCOS – It’s Tebow time, as the much-hyped QB will start for the Broncos on Sunday against the winless Dolphins in Miami. The fans have been screaming for Tim Tebow since day one. Kyle Orton was doomed from the start, and his performance against the Chargers, (6-of 13 for 34 yards) was the icing on the cake. Head coach John Fox had to do something to spark his team. Denver is ranked 27th in passing offense and 22nd in rushing. Tebow has the ability to improve both of those numbers. He’ll be returning to the state where he had so much success in college.

MINNESOTA VIKINGS – The Vikes are 1-4, and Donovan McNabb may have seen his last action for quite some time. He was benched in the second half of Sunday night’s blowout loss to the Bears in favor of rookie Christian Ponder. Of course, you can’t blame McNabb for letting Devin Hester do what he does best, and you can’t blame him for letting Jay Cutler light up the secondary. That said, Minnesota has already blown two big leads already this season vs. Tampa Bay and Detroit. Head coach Leslie Frazier is expected to decide Wednesday whether Ponder will make his first career start against the Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers.

WASHINGTON REDSKINS – Washington is over .500 [3-2] but when you have Rex Grossman on your team, well I think you know where I’m heading with this. After playing decent football through the first four weeks of the season, Grossman threw four interceptions in the loss to the Eagles – three of them to Philadelphia safety Kurt Coleman. Mike Shanahan benched Grossman in the second half in favor of John Beck. Will this be a permanent change? We’ll see who lines up under center on Sunday in Carolina.

NFL 2011: NFC North Predictions

Can Aaron Rodgers and his Green Bay Packers win another Super Bowl?

By Matt Noonan 

One of the toughest divisions in the NFL just got a tad bit better. In fact, all four teams will compete against one another, but when it’s all said and done, Chicago and Minnesota should rue the day, while Detroit leaps past them in the standings. Green Bay is most likely the favorite, however, any injuries or Super Bowl hangover could allow the Lions a chance to sneak into the top spot.

1.) Green Bay Packers [11-5] – It’s hard to think that the Packers won’t experience a “Super Bowl” hiccup, but then again, anything’s possible. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers is primed to improve this year, as well as build off the success he experienced last year. The Packers also get a few key components back to their offense, tight end Jermichael Finley and running back Ryan Grant, who sustained serious season ending injuries last season. Expect the defense to ramp up their intensity, as well as support their offense too, especially if they’re in trouble, but all in all, the Packers are certainly a lock to make a run toward Super Bowl XLVI.

2.) Detroit Lions [9-7] – The key for the Lions is to remain healthy. Quarterback Matthew Stafford hasn’t finished an entire season, so here’s hope that he, as well as running back Jahvid Best can overcome any bumps and bruises this year. Also, expect their defense to provide loads of pressure on opposing quarterbacks, especially defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.

3.) Chicago Bears [8-8] – Does anyone truly believe that Jay Cutler is a legit quarterback in this league? Seriously, who thinks he’s amazing? Cutler isn’t exactly a leader or Mr. Clutch, but this season, expect him, as well as his Bears teammates to take a step backward. There are injuries and other issues, as well as linebacker Lance Briggs’s “trade drama.” Also, does anyone expect Roy Williams to make a major impact on offense? Overall, it should be another typical year in the “Windy City” for the Bears and their fans.

4.) Minnesota Vikings [6-10] – Who truly believes that Donovan McNabb is the answer for this team? Anyone else believe that Christian Ponder will earn the starting job mid-way through the season? The Vikings have a lot of questions marks on offense and defense, but hopefully first year head coach Leslie Frazier can salvage six or seven wins.

NFL Preseason Week 4 – News and Notes

Troy Aikman and Skip Bayless apparently aren't seeing eye-to-eye these days!

By Matt Noonan 

Week four of the NFL preseason concludes on Thursday, which means the regular season is right around the corner

Here’s a couple of headlines and news from Wednesday afternoon and evening, which you’ll certainly enjoy.

* According to a recent report, former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman admitted on the radio that the next time he sees ESPN’s Skip Bayless, he might take a swing at him. Yet, what exactly prompted Aikman to say these fine words? Well, because Bayless stated in his book, Hell Bent that Aikman was gay. Of course, this statement is incredibly false, so obviously, Aikman does have the right to be angry, however, shouldn’t Bayless apologize for his error? Who knows, but seriously, this isn’t exactly football news, but instead, juicy commentary and gossip.

* The Washington Post published an interesting piece on the Redskins head coach Mike Shannahan, who apparently isn’t “Mr. Nice Guy.” Although, what exactly does that mean? Shannahan didn’t experience the greatest amount of success last season, especially since defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth stole a majority of the headlines before quarterback Donovan McNabb threw a tantrum in October and November. Shannahan knows how to win, so hopefully, this is a sign that things are turning around because otherwise, he, as well as his team will falter, again.

* New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker won’t play on Thursday against the New York “Football” Giants due to a recent head injury, which he sustained after a tackle in Detroit last weekend. Although, Welker admitted that the decision to play falls on the shoulders of head coach Bill Belichick and the training staff. Keeping Welker out of Thursday’s game is probably a good decision, especially since it’s the least important preseason game.

* Last Wednesday, I mentioned an interesting story about Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton and his starting job. Well, once again, he’s another important figure this week, especially since Thursday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers will decide his role with the team. Yet, no matter the outcome, expect Newton to play a majority of the second half of the upcoming regular season, especially since they’ll have to play him at some point this year, right?

Noonan: An Ode to Randy Moss

 

By Matt Noonan 

Does this seem right, Randy Moss retiring?

Hmm… Again, I can’t seem to wrap my head around this, but then again, does anyone have an idea about why “the freak” decided to hang up his cleats for good?

If you have an answer, please speak now or forever hold your peace.

When news broke Monday about Moss’s retirement, I was stunned, especially after his agent, Joel Segal announced to the world that his client was in the best shape of his career. Although, I do wonder, did I miss something? He did state those exact words, right?

Randy Moss shocked the sports world on Monday, as he announced his retirement from the NFL, but really, should we expect him to return this season?

Segal, who was quoted in numerous media outlets about Moss’s decision to walk away from the NFL, uttered the following on Monday: “After weighing his options and contemplating offers, he’s decided to retire.”

OK, what exactly was Moss considering or pondering the past few weeks or months? Did he truly think that New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was going to call or text him?

Perhaps, Brett Favre was going to consider asking him if he’d like to play catch with him and his friends from high school?

Again, what exactly was Moss thinking these past few weeks? I’m not quite sure, but do have a hunch that he was hoping the Minnesota Vikings would contact him and say, “Hey, Randy, come back and play with our new quarterback, Donovan McNabb!” Yet, that didn’t happen.

Although, speaking of the Vikings, there was a rather interesting report on Monday from TwinCities.com (Pioneer Press), as players and coaches expressed their true feelings toward Moss’s decision and yes, they were all rather kind and wonderful words. In fact, first-year head coach Leslie Frazier compared Moss to Michael Jordan, but that’s a little bizarre, right? I mean, hey, Jordan might indeed be the greatest athlete of all time, but that’s a debate for another day.

So, where does Moss go from here? Perhaps, he’ll join FOX Sports, CBS or ESPN? Maybe he’ll do some male modeling? Should he become the next great movie star? Might he consider writing a book like New York Jets head coach, Rex Ryan?

Hmm… once again, I ask that you keep your wild, strange and outrageous fantasies to yourself, OK?

Moss is certainly a legend. Seriously, the man finished his 13-year career with 954 receptions, 14,858 receiving yards and 153 touchdown catches, so I guess it’s an obvious that he’ll join the true legends and hero’s of the game in Canton, Ohio, (NFL Hall of Fame) right? Again, he’s a legend and one of the best receivers, but sadly, he’ll also be remembered as the guy who didn’t win the “big one.”

All right, enough rambling, it’s time to bring my Randy Moss rant to an end, so, I’ll go out with a bold prediction and state, he’ll be back this season and yes, there’s a little bit of Michael Strahanin him because seriously, he’s a 34-year-old man who doesn’t want to practice or commit himself to two-a-days, but instead, just the game of football.

Daily Noontime – July 28, 2011

The New England Patriots have officially acquired, Albert Haynesworth!

Happy Thursday everyone! Welcome to yet another Daily Noontime. Here’s the day’s headlines and news, so enjoy! 

Headlines: 

* The New England Patriots made a bold move, as they traded for Washington Redskins defensive end, Albert Haynesworth in exchange for a fifth-round draft pick in 2013.

* It’s been an exciting past few weeks for Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury, who have been major contributors for the Boston Red Sox offense.

* Well, apparently Carlos Beltran is going to leave the New York Mets and heading west to join the defending World Series champions, San Francisco Giants.

* For the first time in his career, Ervin Santana pitched a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians on Thursday. Yep, the Los Angles of Anaheim Angels were rather happy once the final out was recorded.

* According to reports, the Miami Dolphins will acquire former New Orleans Saints running back, Reggie Bush.

* Donovan McNabb must be  a happy man these days, as he was acquired by the Minnesota Vikings.

Games to Watch: 

* Florida at Washington (MLB) – 12:35pm eastern 

* Los Angels of Anaheim Angels at Detroit (MLB) – 1:05pm eastern 

* Kansas City at Boston (MLB) – 1:35pm eastern 

* San Francisco at Philadelphia (MLB) – 7:07pm eastern 

Video of the Day: 

I’m sure Tom Brady will be happy to have Albert on his side this time!