Category Archives: Football

Arkansas Razorback Football: It begins

I could not help noticing that on Saturday, while I watched Stave miss on pass after pass, that Bret Bielema blew a pretty big lead against Rutgers. This was the always the concern when he was at Wisconsin, blowing the big game and playing down to his opponent. If you are reading this and you are from Arkansas, I’m glad you took this problem off our hands. We had many close calls with him but we all knew here in Wisconsin, that what we saw Saturday was going to happen.

Best of luck Arkansas and once again, thank you for taking Bret.

1 Comment

Filed under Football

McCarthy needs to give up the offensive reigns

During the crazy 34-30 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals there was one fact that was move prevalent than anything, Mike McCarthy lacks the common sense to run an offense in the NFL. Now I know that he has led us to a Super Bowl, but the way the offense was running that season, there was no way of screwing that up.

There have been many examples in the past of the sheer incompetence, but the there were two examples during Sunday’s game.

  1. 4th Down and 6 inches – After the yardage reversal on the Cobb catch we encountered the much dreaded short yardage situation. There is a motto “Work Smart, Not Hard”, apparently this saying is lost on McCarthy. Instead of going with the easy and more likely successful QB sneak, we go with the hand off to the running back. The hand off is so much riskier with the chance of someone coming through the line and with going back to 7 yards back to go to 1 yard forward. This should have been a easy call, an easy call, you QB sneak it and keep the clock moving. If you can not make this easy correct call, you should not be calling plays in the NFL.
  2. 4th Down End of Game situation – We are moving the ball down the field, but we end up with a fourth down situation. I’ve always held that you should try to reduce the number variables in any big play. Given that Rodgers had previous passes batted down on the drive, we should have rolled him out of the pocket to reduce the chance of a pass being knocked down or Rodgers being sacked. In the end, the pass gets batted down and the game is over.

These errors can no longer be overlooked, these issues with the play calling need to be changed. The defenses of the NFL change their defense schemes year to year and so should the Packers offense. While it appears that the Packers are starting to get a running game the offense continues to be crippled by the sabotage play calling McCarthy.

The easy thing to do is to hand over the play sheet to someone else, but I really hope we are not heading down the path of one of my other posts. Anyway, in the end it is time for a new play caller in town with common sense and a sense for the game before this offense goes down the tank.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

Stave not the answer for Badgers

During a post last year ripping on Bret Bielema, I laid out the regression of the quarterback position for the Badgers Football team since Bielema took over the program. During this post I mentioned that I gave Joel Stave an incomplete grade and mentioned “There is hope, but I want to see how he plays next year.”. That hope was lost during the 41-10 victory over Purdue.

People who read this post will say that Wisconsin won with Stave why are we ripping about Stave this week? Because it was the defense and the running game that won on Saturday. Stave proved once again that he is not going to get any better accuracy wise. I have seen pass after pass in the four games this season that has been off the mark, but still caught or just plain inaccurate and incomplete.

The final straw for me was on the deep pass to Abbrederis when he was open by 15 yards and Stave was not only short on the pass but off to the right. When you have a guy that wide open, all you have to do is just lay it in there, in this case you can underthrow a little bit, but to be that far off, that is it for me. It is time to replace Stave with Phillips or Houston, anything different is just a waste of time for the Badgers. Each snap with Stave under center is a wasted time for someone else with potential to get valuable game experience.

I had been concerned for the past two weeks about the accuracy of Stave, but by the four game and with minimal wind, we should should be hitting our receivers in stride or hitting the home run passes. The problem really presented itself the previous week during the Arizona State, a slightly better team, when he went on long stretches without completing a pass. This problem will be further exasperated in the coming weeks when we play better opponents. Teams like Ohio State will try to stop the run first and make Stave make his throws which Stave will be incapable of doing.

My proposed solution? Bring in Bart Houston, if you are just handing off the ball, Houston should be more than capable of doing that, plus he brings a running quarterback element that Stave does not posses. Plus if Houston can throw the ball accurately, we could have a dangerous offense for years to come.

I’m a person is is proactive instead of reactive, I personally do not wait until something happens to change something because you are hurting the team. It is time to replace Stave with someone else before it too late for him or the receiver he is going to get killed across the middle.

Get rid of Stave!

1 Comment

Filed under Football

Packers and the no confidence defense

If a team completely dominates another team for 1/2 a game, but still wins, does anybody care? This guy does. While I did enjoy the 38-20 victory over Washington, what was not lost by me was once again the large number of passing yards that were hemorrhaged by the defense. Last year I had written a post about having no confidence in the Badgers against anybody good, today I write about my no confidence in the Packers Defense.

Another game of 300+ passing yards (320 to be exact) given up by a secondary that can not cover and a defensive line that can not reach the quarterback. Some people might say to me that the game was over and the Packers were just not allowing any big plays, but let me say this, how many teams do you know that are playing “prevent” defense blitz? This shows me that Dom Capers was still attempting to play this defense straight up 100% to shut down Washington.

It was another week in which no adjustments were made during the game or at halftime which led to another receive having a monster day against us. This week it was Pierre Garcon, last week it was Anquan Boldin. Dom Capers proves that once again, instead of addressing the issue with maybe something like double converge on the receiver in question, we decide to blitz the hell out the quarterback which leads into my next problem…

The pass rush, the non-existent pass rush reared it ugly head, especially in the second half of today’s game. How did we address this lack of pass rush? By blitzing, but this caused the opposite effect because none of the blitzers reached the quarterback and the receivers were more wide open than they already were.

For the above reasons and because of the way the Packers defense has played since 2011 the Packers should put Dom Capers out of his misery now, fire him and start building a new defensive scheme. Most people would think I’m insane to suggest firing an assistant coach, but why waist time on what you already know is going to happen? Why allow us to play the 10 yards off the ball defense?

There is no reason today after the way the offense played in first half that the backup offensive players should not have got some time on the field today, but due to the defense allowing Washington to keep the game within an arms length this could not happen. This cost the backup value experience on the field for future situations.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy that the Packers did win today, but I can not help it that you can see the car wreck happening while the cars are two miles apart, but the cars keeping going along the same course. It is time for a course correction  and fire Dom Capers.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

Over the top opening song/video

I could be using this post explain the way the Badgers were sabotaged out of a win Saturday, but that would be too easy and there already too many articles that have or will be written on the subject.

What I really want to talk about is the opening video of Berzer by Eminem with Notre Dame/Purdue highlights integrated into the video before the game on Saturday night. I will post a link to the video if I can find one.

All I have to say about that video is….. Wow. That is not a good wow, that is more like “Oh my eyes” along with a “What the hell?”. I’m a person who has never done any drugs, but watching that intro I’m assuming that is what being on acid is like with the stop motion along with the forward and reverse of the video. The video itself was pointless while boarding on driving away viewers. I ask why that type of intro video is needed?

What is wrong with the simple intro video? The people that already have channel set to ABC are not going to say “I really want to watch Purdue, but that intro video is too simple, lets flip on Hallmark Channel instead”.

In this era of companies trying to maximize their profit, I would think that the intro video would be one area that television companies would be looking. I’m sure this post will have no effect on future intro video, but I wanted to get my thoughts out there about the intro video.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football, Other

Packers: New Year – Same Defense

This was the Packers chance, the 49ers had lost the Super Bowl, they did not have the same team and the Packers had worked on the defense, but all that was just a dream last Sunday. The same old Packers defense reared it ugly head with close loss in the Bay.

I can only sum up the game and team like this:

Linebackers = Still Slow

  • Corners = Take too many chances
  • Safeties = Sound rename themselves the “Un-Safeties”.
  • D-Line = They do not exist, we rush one person in the middle and two linebackers on the side

One position I would like to hit on is the D-Line, Ted Thompson has made to no attempt to replace this position since the Super Bowl run. We continue to run one person on the line with two linebackers which leads to no pass rush and no pass defense. This is a clear attempt of sabotage by Ted not to see this issue and correct this issue.

The scheme of Dom Capers did get us a title, but it does not work any more. We can not continue to play the big yard zone defense games and continue to win. It is time to get rid of Dom and start a new era of the man to man defense and turn this team around. The time is now, not when we have the 4-12 record.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

What is the fuss with the name of the new football playoff?

I guess when it comes right down to it, you can really can not please everybody. This statement is not more true when it came to the naming of the College Football Playoff. What is the big deal with the name of this new playoff? It is not fancy, it does not beat around the bush, it gets directly to the point.

Honestly, what did people really want to call it? The Battle of the Gridiron? The ineligible players playoff? Future probation teams tournament? When it comes right down to get, the people got what they wanted, a college football playoff and who cares what they call it.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

NFL Draft Four Days Away

Can you believe it, time for another NFL draft? And due to another no free agent signing year from Packers GM Ted Thompson, we once again rely on the lifeblood of the NFL draft to resupply the team and fix a defense that looked non-existent against the running of San Francisco.

You never really know what you are going to get with Thompson, sometimes he gets the it right (2005, 2010), sometimes he gets it wrong (2006). It is funny watching him explain why he takes some of the players he does. For example, in 2007 with the pick of Justin Harrell Thompson stated that he had to take the best player available regardless of position, but yet Brady Quinn was still available at the time (Granted that too would have also been a bad pick).

Who are we going to pick? Only Thompson knows.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

The NFL takes one step closer to more confusion

The NFL, the game that relates that relates to more people in America than any other sport has taken a minor step back during the annual meeting this year in Phoenix, AZ. A series of rules were passed to “enhance” the safety and the game overall. A listing can be found here.

These are my thoughts are the rule changes:

  1. Illegal challenges – Of all the rules, this is the only one I agree with changing. The was no reason to no right the wrong in the play no matter how stupid the head coach can be from time to time. If this rule would not have changed, I would have wondered if Bud Selig and his take 10 years to make a rule easy rule change crew was running the show.
  2. No overloading on XP and FG’s – The game of football is a rough game, but changing rules like this is watering down the game and stop creativity. This is just another one of Roger Goodell’s don’t let the players sue the league 30 years from now policy rule changes.
  3. Tuck Rule – This rule had existed for years upon years without it causing any trouble, but one snowy day in New England changed that in the most replayed example of this rule. Anytime any play even came close to the tuck rule, we saw a replay of Tom Brady, whenever Tom Brady played on TV we saw the reply, whenever there was a game played in snow we saw a replay. Only one of two things was going to happen to stop everybody from talking about the tuck rule, one… Delete the tuck rule or two… Send Tom Brady off to an unnamed remote island in the Pacific and strike his name from all records in a Moses in the Ten Commandments style kind of banishment.
  4. Allowing 40’s range for Backs and Tight Ends – And why is this an important rule change? Why doesn’t football just say that all offensive linemen are in a certain number range and everybody else is eligible? End of problem.
  5. Peel Back Blocks – Please see point #2
  6. No leading with Crown of Helmet – Why do we play with helmets? What is the point anymore? You can not touch anybody in the helmet, you can not have helmet to helmet hits from the defender and now running backs can not lead outside the magic 3 yard box. So why do we play with helmets? If everybody plays within the rules, you should not need helmets

To me, these additional rules/changes are another step towards a more complex, more NBA rule like structure. The NFL game is no longer a game that anybody can just start watching and understand. The game is filled with all these complex exceptions that make the game hard to watch and even harder for officials to officiate.  All you need is the teams to pass a rule allowing a mid-level salary cap exception and we can start calling this the NB&FLA(National Basketball and Football League Association).

With more complexity, you create the potential to drive away fans or future fans. That is what you have with the NFL, the rules have been watered down and people want to the game to be exciting but not watered down. I personally think this could be the opportunity for Soccer to breakout in America. The game is simple (minus offsides) to understand, no goofy rules, and the players are not actively suing the league.

Whatever comes of the rule changes this year, the fans will continue to show in the short term, but too many rules too soon just might de-throne the game and vilify whoever is driving the bus for going off the cliff.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

Flacco should get a raise, but how much?

Just a short thought today about the Flacco contact situation. Flacco received a ~$20 million a year deal to make him the highest/top paid Quarterback right now, but it begs the question in my head, is he really worth it?

Now I understand that he did just lead his team to Super Bowl victory, but does he really deserve top flight money just due to a hot run in the playoffs? Everybody these days thinks that if a player is on the championship winning team that he automatically should be the top paid player. The passing game this year was not the best in the NFL. The Flacco led passing game was mid-pack in all passing stats, but yet he should be paid better than a Rodgers, Brees, or Brady?

It is time now to reel in the insanity, and pay Flacco what he is really worth, as a high mid-pack QB which only should be around 10-12 million a season, maybe 14 with incentives. Not everybody should get what they want, even in success. NFL players are one play away from injury, a bad play or the bench, don’t let the high of the Super Bowl cloud against reasonable judgment.

I know the current deal with Flacco is a done deal, but I hope that reasonable judgement will finally kick in just like with the rookie contracts issue and teams will wait until they come off the cloud and make sound choices on how to spend their money.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football