April 25, 2014

Calling out the worst of all NFL draft clichés

2012 NFL Draft

Leading up to an NFL draft, there are a lot of hackneyed conversations that will drive a fan absolutely crazy. It seems that some fans want to rely on simplistic rules to simplify the NFL draft for themselves. It’s a coping mechanism to help deal with the fact that most fans have do not possess nearly enough information to truly decide what their team needs or how they should build for the future. It’s not an indictment of fans to not know, but it is an indictment for fans who pretend like they do.

Know what, exactly? It’s infuriating this time of year, but how many fans do you come across — at the bar, calling sports talk radio or on Twitter — who think of themselves as the only one qualified to run the war room of their favorite football team? Imagine every nugget of their “wisdom” being delivered with a confident, smug smile that says, “I just know I’m right.” Instead of looking at each team like a complex system that needs lots of different pieces, we get a lot of vague, simplistic misconceptions. And with that, here are my least favorite draft clichés.

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Cowboys loss was more frustrating than most Browns losses

Browns penalties must be hysterical to Ed Hochuli’s crew

I have a tough time explaining why my frustration levels fluctuate so much throughout a Browns season. Some weeks as the Browns lose, it barely registers on the imaginary frustrate-o-meter in my house. I kind of shrug my shoulders, write about the Browns game on Sunday and just move along with my week. Then other weeks I’m dropping the ugliest of linguistic bombs on the WFNY email thread because I’m so beside myself trying to deal with my favorite football team wetting the bed. This week, it felt like they wet the bed after I just removed the water proof mattress liner. This was a two-win football team heading into the game against Dallas. What exactly is it that I expected that would give me this level of frustration? On the WFNY podcast this week, I said flat-out that the Browns could win, but that we were probably talking about a 30% chance of taking it home. Based on those expectations, shouldn’t I have almost been pleasantly surprised that the Browns had leads and forced a superior team into an overtime at home? Logic might dictate that, but this game still frustrated me beyond belief.

Was it the refereeing? I’m sure that had something to do with it. I think the referees got the call right on T.J. Ward’s hit, even though I don’t love the rule. Other than that though, Ed Hochuli’s crew was abysmal. There was a brutal uncalled false start, a pretty questionable pass interference on Buster Skrine when he legitimately located the ball and was working his way back to it just like the receiver. Skrine maybe had earned opposite of the benefit of the doubt by this point in the game after numerous other legitimate penalties, but I still think they got it wrong. On one of the kickoff return holding penalties the ref who threw the flag was laughing while telling Ed Hochuli about it. Might have meant nothing, but as the Browns were trying to not blow a 13-0 halftime lead it rubbed me the wrong way. Then of course is the fumble-ruled-incomplete-pass that would have been a pretty compelling review despite the animated cheering of Dan Dierdorf that it was incomplete. [Read more...]

Browns Survey Results: fans expected to lose, but not that badly

Browns fans weren’t overly excited about the game. Even after a 14-0 first quarter lead, it seems the skepticism was warranted. Nearly 30% of Browns fans who filled out our survey thought the Browns would win. I personally thought the Browns had a good chance, for them, but to me that meant 37.2% as I said to Andrew on our latest podcast. Anyway, final score prediction was an eight point loss 27-19. Considering the Browns were down 27-17 in the first half, maybe they were on to something… for one half. Of course, the Browns went on to lose 41-27.

On with the rest of the results. Nobody was right about QB sacks. Weeden was sacked 0 times, although he did take two official QB hits.

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Browns 27, Giants 41 – Browns Start Fast, Finish Last

The good news is that the Browns scored two touchdowns in the first quarter. The Browns recovered a fumble deep in Giants territory to open the game and Trent Richardson scrambled 15 yards for the TD. Then Brandon Weeden finally hit a home run pass when he caught Josh Gordon against a linebacker deep for 62 yards and a TD. After that, the Giants started to play like the Giants and the Browns started to play like the Browns we’re used to.

Brandon Weeden threw an awful interception on third-and-one after the initial receiver routes broke down. He directed traffic, Gordon moved and then he threw wild and high. The Giants returned the ball a long way and scored. Then Josh Cribbs fumbled a kickoff and the Giants scored again. Then the Browns punted, gave the Giants the ball and gave up a huge pass interference to gift the Giants a field goal. There were other things that happened in there, but all that matters is the Giants finished the first half on a 27-3 run after the Browns started the game with a 14-0 lead.

Brutal. Abominable. Disgusting. Embarrassing. Unacceptable. Fill in your own blanks if you think we need more. [Read more...]

Browns vs. Giants – Reader Survey

The Browns go on the road for the second straight week to a paved-over swamp in New Jersey to face the Giants. Here’s your chance to stand up and be counted to help us try and figure out what’s going to happen and how.

Giants receiver Nicks in doubt for Browns game

Is it the foot, or is it the knee? Well, both, I guess. Nicks had a foot problem originally that the Giants were waiting to heal. In the meantime, his knee has apparently started to swell. The Browns will face another team without Joe Haden this week as they face off against the New York Giants, but as the week goes it seems more and more likely that the Browns won’t have to face receiver Hakeem Nicks in that passing attack.

But it’s a knee problem that concerns them now, when the wide receiver experienced swelling after running for the first time in a week. It’s cost him two straight games, and his status for this week is uncertain.

In addition, Eli Manning didn’t have the best day against the Eagles in a loss this past weekend, but that’s all relative when talking about a two-time Super Bowl winner. Manning still had over 300 yards through the air and helped put Domenik Hixon and Victor Cruz over 100 yards each. So Nicks or not, the Browns should still have their hands full in the Haden-less secondary.

[Related: NFL Week 4: Winners and Losers]

NFL Draft: Bullet point thoughts on RG3 and the Browns

On a day where I’m having trouble thinking about anything but the crazy news out of the next town over from me, I am trying to distract myself with RG3 stuff.  And I find it all confusing.

  • I’ve said it before, and I know the logic isn’t sound, but I have a lot of trouble figuring out how it makes sense to trade up with massive compensation for the Rams for the consensus second best quarterback in the draft.
  • The logic stinks because some years Eli Manning and Phillip Rivers come out together and everyone wins. [Read more...]

Super Bowl Box Score: New York Giants 21, New England Patriots 17

Your Super Bowl MVP- Eli Manning.

Scoring Summary

1st Quarter NYG – NE
8:52 New York Giants NYG SAF Safety 2 – 0
3:24 New York Giants NYG TD Eli Manning passed to Victor Cruz down the middle for 2 yard gain (Lawrence Tynes made PAT) 9 – 0
2nd Quarter NYG – NE
13:48 New England Patriots NE FG Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 29-yard field goal 9 – 3
0:08 New England Patriots NE TD Tom Brady passed to Danny Woodhead to the left for 4 yard gain (Stephen Gostkowski made PAT) 9 – 10
3rd Quarter NYG – NE
11:20 New England Patriots NE TD Tom Brady passed to Aaron Hernandez to the left for 12 yard gain (Stephen Gostkowski made PAT) 9 – 17
6:43 New York Giants NYG FG Lawrence Tynes kicked a 38-yard field goal 12 – 17
0:35 New York Giants NYG FG Lawrence Tynes kicked a 33-yard field goal 15 – 17
4th Quarter NYG – NE
0:57 New York Giants NYG TD Ahmad Bradshaw rushed up the middle for 6 yard gain (2pt attempt failed, D.J. Ware run to the right) 21 – 17

Passing

New York Giants Comp Att Yds Pct Y/A Sack YdsL TD Int Rating
Eli Manning 30 40 296 75.0 7.4 3 14 1 0 103.8
New England Patriots Comp Att Yds Pct Y/A Sack YdsL TD Int Rating
Tom Brady 27 41 276 65.9 6.7 2 10 2 1 91.1

Rushing

New York Giants Rush Yds Avg Lng TD FumL
Ahmad Bradshaw 17 72 4.2 24 1 0
Brandon Jacobs 9 37 4.1 11 0 0
D.J. Ware 1 6 6.0 6 0 0
Eli Manning 1 -1 -1.0 -1 0 0
New England Patriots Rush Yds Avg Lng TD FumL
BenJarvus Green-Ellis 10 44 4.4 17 0 0
Wes Welker 2 21 10.5 11 0 0
Danny Woodhead 7 18 2.6 6 0 0

Receiving

New York Giants Rec Yds Avg Lng TD FumL
Hakeem Nicks 10 109 10.9 19 0 0
Mario Manningham 5 73 14.6 38 0 0
Bear Pascoe 4 33 8.3 12 0 0
Victor Cruz 4 25 6.3 8 1 0
Henry Hynoski 2 19 9.5 13 0 0
Ahmad Bradshaw 2 19 9.5 11 0 0
Jake Ballard 2 10 5.0 9 0 0
D.J. Ware 1 8 8.0 8 0 0
New England Patriots Rec Yds Avg Lng TD FumL
Aaron Hernandez 8 67 8.4 12 1 0
Wes Welker 7 60 8.6 19 0 0
Deion Branch 3 45 15.0 19 0 0
Danny Woodhead 4 42 10.5 19 1 0
Rob Gronkowski 2 26 13.0 20 0 0
Chad Ochocinco 1 21 21.0 21 0 0
BenJarvus Green-Ellis 2 15 7.5 8 0 0

Kicking

New York Giants XPM XPA FGM FGA Lng Pct Pts
Lawrence Tynes 1 1 2 2 38 100.0 7
New England Patriots XPM XPA FGM FGA Lng Pct Pts
Stephen Gostkowski 2 2 1 1 29 100.0 5

Giants Advance Past San Francisco 20-17 in OT

The New York Giants ended San Francisco’s amazing run with new head coach Jim Harbaugh in overtime Sunday setting up a Super Bowl rematch of sorts with the New England Patriots.

Today began with the possibility of 2 Harbaughs coaching in the biggest game of the year, and instead will feature neither of them after New England’s win over Baltimore. Instead, we have Eli Manning going for his second Super Bowl ring (which would be one more than his brother) in Peyton’s home stadium. Safe to say that the local Indianapolis fans will be pulling for the younger Manning to do for a second time what Peyton has had trouble accomplishing- namely beating the Patriots in the post-season.

Browns fans meanwhile will continue to watch with little rooting interest after Brad Seely’s special teams crew made two crucial mistakes in the return game likely costing the 49ers the game.

Additionally, Browns players will be enjoying the game from home, or the local establishment of their choice. Like center Alex Mack-

Might as well go ahead and make your plans for next post-season too Alex.

NFL Rumor: Browns to Pursue Peyton Manning?

I know that is one heck of a headline, right?  Thanks to Adam Schefter talking to Mike and Mike this morning on ESPN radio Browns fans can dream about Peyton Manning taking over the Browns offense next year.  So, what, exactly could this all be about?

The Colts have fired the Polian family from their front office.  The team hasn’t made a decision regarding their head coach Jim Caldwell as of yet.  They have the number 1 pick in the upcoming NFL draft and QB phenom Andrew Luck is staring them in the face.  Peyton Manning is rehabbing a neck injury where he had vertebrae fused together and he is 35 years old.  He is also due a $28 million (MILLION) roster bonus in March.  The Colts are at a crossroads.

Do they cut Peyton Manning?  Obviously the team could move forward next season without Manning and with Andrew Luck by simply cutting Manning and his gaudy salary.  The Manning family is kind of involved and over-bearing sometimes.  Archie is already on record about Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck sharing the same roster.  Archie makes Brad McCoy look like a sheepish little mouse. [Read more...]

The Value of Seneca Wallace

Talking about Seneca Wallace almost always involves talking about qualifiers.  When you talk about Wallace, phrases usually end with, “for a backup,” or “for a journeyman.”  Wallace hasn’t been through a bunch of different cities, but for whatever reason he still feels like a journeyman to me.  I don’t mean it as an insult either.  I think Seneca Wallace is extremely valuable to the Cleveland Browns.  I felt that way last year, and I think his value is only increased this year.

Can we all agree that Seneca Wallace had a very good year last year for a backup?  I know he only participated in one win as a starter –  a 23-20 victory over the Bengals in week four.  For the season, Wallace stepped in when called upon to complete 63.4% of his passes.  He threw for four touchdowns and two interceptions.  His QB rating for the season was 88.5.  If he had done that for an entire season, he would have finished between Kyle Orton and Jon Kitna.  He would have finished higher than Eli Manning, Carson Palmer and Donovan McNabb. [Read more...]

Braylon Edwards Staying Put?

braylon edwardsCall it anticlimactic, or call it all a ruse.  Either way, I would officially be surprised if Braylon Edwards is traded between now and the beginning of the 2009 football season. 

First we had all of this talk with the Giants.  Eli Manning and Justin Tuck were lobbying for their team to acquire the perceived malcontent, but both teams would not budge from their bid-ask spread. 

However, the Giants landed a top-tier wide receiver in the most recent draft.  And then running back Brandon Jacobs went on record to say that he didn’t want Edwards playing for his team.  On ESPN 1050, Jacobs proclaimed that while Edwards can be “great,” he felt that Braylon would do nothing for team chemistry.  “We don’t need to add a new veteran to the group,” said Jacobs.

Then we had Tony Grossi’s “you heard it here first” remark about a trade to the Jets for Thomas Jones and (hopefully) some additional draft selections.  While most fans gave this a once-over and said “no thanks,” Lane Adkins’ latest claims that the team has not only not discussed Edwards with the Jets, but that the Jets have  also not put Thomas Jones on the trading block. 

So where does this leave us?  [Read more...]

NFL Trade Rumors: Hey, Look. New York Wants Braylon Edwards

braylon-trade-watch1Late last week, Giants quarterback Eli Manning took a pro-Braylon Edwards stance as his team looks to fill the role vacated by the recently-released Plaxico Burress.  And with the NFL draft four days away, one of his teammates is jumping aboard the “who’s going to catch the ball” bandwagon.  Enter defensive lineman Justin Tuck:

“He can lock down one side of the field when he’s playing his best football,” said [Justin] Tuck. “He has the same kind of factor that Plaxico (Burress) has, a big strong receiver who can down the field in a hurry and stretch a defense, which has the ability to open up our running game.”

Tuck claims that he actually spoke with Edwards three weeks ago but did not discuss a potential trade.  Right.  The Giants lineman also claimed that he and Edwards go “way back” to their days where Notre Dame played Michigan, which makes sense.  At least until I read this: [Read more...]

Guest Post: Cavalier Lookalikes 101

Every once in a while, we get ideas tossed our way that are too good to pass up.  This is one of those ideas, brought to life by esteemed WFNY commenter I’m Ron Burgandy? (or IRB?, as he has grown lazy in his commenting ways).  Below, enjoy the hard-hitting research of IRB? as he digs into the true underlying foundation to the success of our Cleveland Cavaliers.

Who doesn’t like a good game of professional athlete look-alike?  In case you don’t know how to play, here are some examples:

1) We all know that Jimmy Clausen looks like an emu.

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While We’re Waiting… Ohio State’s Losing Streak, Delonte West’s Return, and Emmitt Smith’s Pink Slip

While We’re Waiting aims to be the round-up of the recent WFNY-esque information for your morning viewing. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email in the sidebar.

Say it with me: N-I-T: “Once again, Matta got virtually nothing from the bigs. Mullens had eight points and one rebound while Invisidale played true to form with one point and one rebound. Yes, those numbers are accurate. What a bum he’s turned out to be.  The three game skid dropped Ohio State to 4-5 in their last nine games and it doesn’t get any easier this week with Penn State on Tuesday preceding a trip to Purdue. As I said in the preview, I felt today’s game could be the swing game of the season and I’m extremely nervous this team might be running out of steam.” [Chris/Eleven Warriors]

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Ben Roethlisberger: Third Best QB In NFL?

Ben RoethlisbergerI was glossing over an article written over at RotoWorld, one of the best sites for player news out there today.  I got about five lines down and came to a screeching hault.  When discussing quarterbacks and their ranking on the fantasy world, we have this:

1. Peyton Manning IND 32 - With Clark re-signed and Gonzalez ready to step up if Marvin doesn’t snap back, Manning’s consistency trumps Brady’s career year
2. Tom Brady NE 31 - Remains the NFL’s best QB; Moss’ return guarantees another great season, but Brady is not going to hit 50 TDs again
3. Ben Roethlisberger PIT 26 - Easily the third best QB in the NFL and may bypass one of the Big Two in the next couple of years

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File this one under…Are You Serious?

patfans.jpgHave I ever mentioned that I don’t really care for Boston fans? I have huh? Ok, just checking. Well it appears that a growing number of Internet savvy Patriot fans are a bit upset about the Super Bowl. Not that they lost. Not that a perfect season was ruined. But that the Giants, and the refs “cheated them” out of what was rightfully theirs. Kissing Suzy Kolber found this online petition from Boston fans calling for NFL head honcho Roger Goodell to investigate the ending of the Super Bowl, because they suspect foul play. One of the signatures actually suggests…get this…REPLAY THE LAST 1:40 OF THE SUPER BOWL!

Why you ask? Apparently they have several reasons, not the least of which is that they have ‘photo evidence’ of holding on the play in which Eli Manning escapes the pass rush and heaves the ball to David Tyree. That’s right. They found holding on the play. Imagine that. An NFL play in which an offensive lineman holds and doesn’t get a penalty called. Does that ever happen? Surely this is a travesty and must be investigated. (Sorry, the web site with this ‘evidence’ has been shut down.) In addition, they claim that the time keeping was in some way not properly done, and that the clock should have only had 42 seconds on it when the Giants took the ball on their game winning drive. They argue that since that drive took 52 seconds that obviously the Patriots should be awarded the win, because the Giants wouldn’t have scored. [Read more...]

GAMBLOG – The Super Bowl Prop Bets

Super Bowl XLII, Proposition Bets

GAMBLOGCarrying on with the tradition of The GAMBLOG, I thought it would be a great idea to touch on the proposition bets that infiltrate Super Bowl weekend. You see, with only one game on the docket, there is not very much action to throw money on – so if we add a few elements to the game (and in this case, a few elements outside of the actual game itself), it makes things a bit more interesting for those without particular rooting interest. Or in some cases, those that simply need to bet on something.

There are entirely too many bets to mention in this post, so if you need to see them all, head over to Bodoglife.com. I’ll only touch on the ones that I feel give us some decent odds for success. And by “decent,” I mean “Oh, what the heck – its only money.”

If you are a legal type, check out the disclaimer in the post below. Otherwise, get your wager tickets ready – the line is going to be a long one. NEXT!

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We’ll start this puppy off somewhat chronologically. Last year, some people made a big deal regarding the fact that we could bet on how long it would take Billy Joel to get through the National Anthem. The final line was one minute and 44 seconds, and those that took under were handsomely rewarded. This year, we can thank Mr. Joel for moving the line a bit for this year’s singer, Jordin Sparks.

How long will it take Jordin Sparks to sing the National Anthem?

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