NFL: Week 9

By: Shawn Davis

“Fire Andy Reid and get rid of Michael Vick” is the sentiment I’ve heard throughout the day and I understand it, but it’s wrong. After the New Orleans Saints protected their home turf, 28-13, and beat the Philadelphia Eagles last night all the complaints (from Eagles fans) dominated the sports-news cycle. Did any of their fans actually watch the same game that I did, or any other sane viewers for that matter?

I don’t think so; you see if they did, most would come away knowing that there isn’t a single quarterback on Earth that can stand behind that offensive line. Why do I say that? Michael Vick was under duress all evening from the moment he snapped the ball and was picking himself off the turf after most of his pass attempts. He was sacked seven times but he was hit and pressured at least three times that number. Indefensible if you ask me so point at the coach if you will but he doesn’t have any pads on. The Eagles offensive line has been depleted by injuries and you’re not going to find all-pro linemen on the street. It’s not going to happen! Four starters are mending injuries and it’s tough to replace that.

The term “must-win” gets thrown about in sports in an all too-common fashion but it’s directly applicable to the NFL season in that there are only 16 games on the schedule for each team. Both teams needed to win this game for their faint playoff heartbeat to remain intact so for any one of these teams to drop this game would all but signify early vacation planning. At 3-5 both squads can take solace that there are eight games left to play. There are eight games left to play.

Here we go:

PIT 24 @ NYG 20: The game I wanted to see (probably) more than any on the schedule did not disappoint at all. Anytime you get two of this generation’s best quarterbacks squaring off is a plus for the viewing public…this writer included. I’m not going to dive into the bad officiating; I just won’t because that’s the human element at its finest and you cannot review everything. With that said, the officials must do a little better.

The outcome didn’t surprise me in the least and it really should have been a wider margin of victory for the Steelers. The Giants have been inconsistent for the past two weeks and it caught up to them on Sunday. Remember, they escaped Texas last week after dominating the Cowboys, initially, and then treading water until the clock hit zero. The G-Men love to lose at home, it seems, so this was one I saw coming. Additionally, what can be said about Ben Roethlisberger that hasn’t been recycled at this point?

DAL 13 @ ATL 19: For an undefeated team (at 8-0), the Falcons are flying under the radar and are not getting a lot of attention. What they do get is wins; keep it up.

DEN 31 @ CIN 23: Payton Manning didn’t play his best game of the year by throwing two interceptions, but what he did do is make up for it with three touchdowns – and the victory.

TB 42 @ OAK 32: Doug Martin is an amazing talent and he reminds me of Ray Rice, much to the delight of Greg Schiano, I’m sure. He’s on the fantasy radar now…and will be for the next 5-8 years.

MIN 20 @ SEA 30:Seattle’s run defense is stout but you wouldn’t know that looking at this game. In my heart, I truly feel that Adrian Peterson cannot be human. His knee was shredded and he healed in record time to return to his previous form; that being one of dominance. Peterson ran for 182 yards on 17 carries and had two touchdowns on the day. Did you see the numbers above? Do the math if you want; that’s 10.7 yards per carry. A first down is 10 yards – and he averaged as much the entire game. It’s too bad the Vikings passing attack only managed 44 yards passing. That’s no typo either!

BAL 25 @ CLE 15: The Ravens beat a young Browns team, that for some reason, I really like. I need some food. I should order some pizza for Election Day coverage. What are you guys doing for food? Wait, what the hell am I talking about?

ARI 17 @ GB 31: Four-up followed by five-down for the Cardinals. Do you hear that? Open your ears; it’s the Arizona supernova barreling towards the ocean, not as a meteor but as a pebble. Aaron Rodgers has 22 touchdowns and three interceptions in his last six games. I just like reading those numbers.

CHI 51 @ TEN 20: I need to have my head examined after this one. Why? I picked the Bears to take a nap this week, thinking they would overlook the Titans and lose by a field-goal. I felt Chris Johnson would break a few notable runs (he did, and finished with 141 rushing yards and a touchdown; statistics that meant nothing), Matt Hasselbeck would play well (he was ok) and the team would step up to shock a Bears unit that would be looking towards next week’s contest versus the Houston Texans.

Well then what happened?

Charles Tillman forced FOUR fumbles (the Bears recovered three) and has to be the leader for Defensive Player of the Year, right? My lord did they ravage the Titans. Jay Cutler threw for 229 yards and three touchdowns with all three scores going to his favorite target Brandon Marshall (122 yards on nine catches) and Brian Urlacher returned an interception for a touchdown as well. This was bloody; beware of the Bears.

MIA 20 @ IND 23: Andrew Luck has the Colts at 5-3 after a rookie-record setting 433 yard passing day at the office. What about Ryan Tannehill? He didn’t sit on his sideline quivering about the prospect of a duel against the top-pick in April’s draft, he came to compete…and almost won.

Want something that surprised me? Both rookies combined for 86 pass attempts and there wasn’t a single interception thrown.

CAR 21 @ WSH 13: Cam Newton played with a higher level of poise than he’s shown thus far by not forcing plays that weren’t there. Robert Griffin is going to be murdered because of his offensive linemen; maybe he and Vick can share a room.

DET 31 @ JAC 14: The Lions won. I’m running out of steam here. Do you smell the fumes?

BUF 9 @ HOU 21: I don’t have many notes on this but I’ll take a stab at it with this: The Bills are lucky the Texans weren’t aggressive or they could have lost by thirty.

KC 13 @ SD 31: The Chiefs should have lost by thirty.


Don’t complain about politicians…and sit on your hands. Vote!


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