The NFL Bandwagons: Week 3 Edition
Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 23:09
If your sole purpose for reading this article is to further entertain yourself with the monotonous bashing of the current officials, you have come to the wrong place. So flip the channel back to ESPN, refresh your Facebook newsfeed, or call the commissioner yourself (thanks, Clay Matthews!). Heck, you can even check President Obama’s twitter account!
Contrary to what many believe, yellow flags being tossed by the thousands and referees disagreeing on calls were not the only crazy events that went down this past weekend. To follow in the lead of the arrogant and gutless Roger Goodell, let’s ignore the glowing fact that the replacement officials’ performance to date makes Titans running back Chris Johnson look out-of-this-world. Instead, we shall place the focus on quarterbacks losing part of their earlobe, defenses that would have trouble stopping a nosebleed, and the fine art of a “push-off.”
Before the Monday night referees run back onto the field and rule that Marshawn Lynch is soft, Steve McNair is still alive, and Peyton Manning can still adequately throw the deep ball, I should probably begin with the NFL bandwagons for Week 3.
Hop on the Bandwagon, Quickly:
Torrey Smith: If you are still not rooting for this guy, clearly you are either a sour Patriots fan or simply fail to possess a heart. Torrey Smith momentarily froze the football world on Sunday morning when he announced the sudden death of his younger brother, Tevin, via Twitter. Given the choice of sitting the primetime game out, Smith decided to go all Brett Favre in the face of tragedy and dedicate the night to his baby bro. 127 receiving yards and a couple of touchdowns later, and it seems to me that the Ravens deep-threat made the right choice.
Matt Schaub: Schaub may have been able to coast against weaker teams, but sooner or later the Texans gunslinger was going to have to make some big plays through the air. He did just that in Denver, throwing for four touchdowns and taking the wind out of Peyton Manning’s sails right from the start. A nasty hit from Bronco’s linebacker, Joe Mays actually knocked off a piece of Schaub’s left ear, but at least he still has his arm. Sadly, Manning cannot say the same for himself.
Jamaal Charles: Remember when all the “experts” predicted a perfect home slate for the Saints this year? Well, Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles doesn’t, thanks for asking. Take away his 91-yard TD run, and Charles still would have had a big day at the Superdome. But really, Drew Brees, keep referring to the replacement refs as an “embarrassment to the league.” You know what’s really an embarrassment? Your record.
Be Aware of the Nearest Emergency Exit:
Kevin Kolb: Kind of like how Donovan McNabb never really understood the rules of overtime, Kevin Kolb never really got comfortable in Philadelphia. After throwing for more interceptions than touchdowns in four years with the Eagles, Andy Reid decided to trade Kolb to Arizona for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, rapper Meek Mill, and a couple of cheesesteaks. In Week 3’s blowout win over his old squad, Kolb completed the same number of passes as Michael Vick (in 13 less attempts), threw two more touchdowns, and made us all aware that Larry Fitzgerald is still breathing (nine grabs, 114 yards, TD). Are the Cardinals for real?
Golden Tate: It absolutely baffles me that someone whose father is a former NFL receiver and who received an education at Notre Dame has “no idea” what a push-off is. Tate’s all-out shove on Monday Night Football makes Bill Belichick’s grabbing of the ref seem like a pat on the butt. Is anyone else interested on what the original creator of the push-off, Michael Jordan, has to say on this matter?
Minnesota Vikings: Christian Ponder, the former Florida State quarterback, may very well be the best-kept secret in the NFL right now. While Lions QB Matthew Stafford looks significantly worse this season, Ponder seems to have taken a big stride forward for the Vikings in only his second year as a pro. Adrian Peterson is running hard after tearing his ACL just nine months ago, tight end Kyle Rudolph is shaping into a big-time red zone threat, and Minnesota even gets front-flip sensation Jerome Simpson back from his suspension this week. All things considered, it remains to be seen whether the Vikes are the team that lost to the lowly Colts or dominated the 49ers at home. My guess is somewhere in the middle.
Get Off at the Next Stop
Detroit Lions: As much as Stafford was responsible for the offensive fireworks that took place in Detroit last season, he has struggled to even create a spark thus far in the 2012 campaign. Sidelined with a leg injury late in the contest, backup Shaun Hill came in and threw two touchdown passes in 76 seconds to force overtime. In OT, head coach Jim Schwartz claims that miscommunication led to a 4th down run by Hill that was stopped short and sealed the loss. Also, the defense is invisible, as witnessed by the 44 points the Titans put up. The Lions need a wakeup call, and fast.