The NFL absolutely doesn’t make sense sometimes. A team can underachieve all season long, then play the best team in football and look like world beater.
After being one of last year’s upstarts, the Chiefs have looked at times like one of the worst teams in football. But they have enough wins after beating Green Bay, that they still have a prayer of a shot at the playoffs, according to Peter King.
And this is after getting rid of their head coach the previous week. It makes you wonder how important leadership is. If Todd Haley “lost his team” like many will say, does it say more about Haley, or his players who he couldn’t inspire any longer? It doesn’t seem to me that Todd Haley was all that well-liked and he did do odd things like playing his starters for entire pre-season games and still losing.
When Romeo Crennel is the leader that Kansas City thinks they now have, I’m sure members of the Cleveland Browns franchise chuckle. Crennel was fired as head coach of the Browns in 2008 after sputtering to a 4-12 season in which they had high hopes. I think a head coach has to be as equally football smart as he is able to get his players to buy into his passion for winning. Will Crennel be able to do both if given the head job? I’m sure that’s what will be measured in these last two games.
1. Was it that hard to take Tyler Palko out of the starting lineup? Kyle Orton looked worlds better (and the Rock means worlds better) than Palko. After beating the Green Bay Packers on Sunday (and it was the Packers’ first loss of the year if you didn’t pay attention to anything sports related yesterday), Orton has to have the week 17 game against the Denver Broncos circled on the calendar. It’s the same Broncos who traded him after giving one Timothy Richard Tebow his starting job.
2. And then sometimes, the NFL makes a whole lot of sense. In a world in which we measure things and make sense of information, the New England Patriots should beat the Denver Broncos easily. But we also live in a world where Tim Tebow flexes his religious muscles, sings “Our God Is An Awesome God” on the sidelines and then in an awe shucks manner, leads his team to victory week after week. Thankfully, Tomothy Brady had something to say about this. His Patriots beat the Tebow-led Broncos in decisive fashion 41-23.
4. Did you know that Drew Brees is just 304 yards away from breaking Dan Marino’s single season passing yardage record, which he set in 1984? The Saints easily beat the Minnesota Vikings to set up a Monday Night Football game against the resurgent Atlanta Falcons who beat the Jags 41-14 on Thursday night. The Vikings are now just 1 game away from sucking for Luck, though, would they draft Luck even with Christian Ponder on their roster? I’d think so.
5. They are only one game away from being tied for the worst record in the league because the Indianapolis Colts won their first game! Thanks to the great Dan Orlovsky, the Colts won’t be winless this season. Orlovsky was also on the 0-16 Detroit Lions and you know he wanted no part of being on two 0-16 teams. So what does this mean in the Suck For Luck campaign? I think it means that Peyton Manning is giving Orlovsky special QB lessons so that Indy can’t draft Luck.
By the way, Peyton Manning wanted me to remind you how good he is.
7. If you think the NFC East is a wacky division, what about the AFC West? Much like the Eagles, the San Diego Chargers have underachieved all season long and are peaking right at the end, especially after embarrassing the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday Night Football. The Chargers, Raiders, and Chiefs all have a chance to unseat the division leading Broncos. Rather than try to make sense of all of the scenarios, SB Nation has laid it all out.
8. I heard some say that TJ Yates wasn’t that bad of a QB for the Houston Texans. And even though he was a rookie, just based on watching Cam Newton, Andy Dalton, and at times, Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder play, he might be able to play well enough for the Texans to win a playoff game or two. Even though he didn’t play well, throwing two picks in the process, the Texans were still only down by 8 in the 4th quarter. Well, they were until the Panthers ran the “Annexation of Puerto Rico”, inspired by the kid’s movie Little Giants. You can’t win a game if you get okie doked by a play from a kid’s movie.
10. I think the Monday Night Football game is far more important to the San Francisco 49ers than the Pittsburgh Steelers. But Ben Roethlisberger isn’t taking it that way. He’s trying to play with a high ankle sprain. The 49ers need to prove that they aren’t a fraudulent contender and need to be able to beat a team whose defense is on par with theirs. With the Ravens loss to the Chargers, the Steelers can put some distance between them and the Ravens in the race for home field advantage. So maybe the game is now just as important to the Steelers. I still think the 49ers win a close one. I have to imagine Jim Harbaugh has spent the entire week figuring out how to beat blitzing defenses, which has been the 49ers kryptonite thus far. I have them winning 21-17.