Archive for the ‘Commentary’ Category

We touched on this earlier, but now it’s sort of official, or at least getting close to official. So we’ll touch it again, and we’ll touch it real good.

Jeff Demps is an Olympic sprinter, but not too long ago he was also a sprinter in a football backfield and he was asked to carry a ball and run really fast with it. He did that in Florida for the Gators, and now he’ll be doing it in New England.

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Football vernacular is filled with complex terminology, which is standard in a game where the X’s are always trying to pound the crap out of the O’s.

But “chunk plays” only sounds complex. It’s a term used to describe plays in which the offense is able to gain a chunk of yardage on one play, as opposed to using multiple smaller plays to gain that same yardage. The exact yardage required to achieve a chunk play varies, but generally 15-20 yards is sufficient.

The motivation to feature chunk plays is simple on the most intelligence-insulting level. More yardage picked up on one play means the offense is moving down the field quicker, and their odds of scoring and having a productive drive increase.

Conversely, the consequences of struggling to accumulate chunk plays are pretty obvious too. But once data is provided to analyze the importance of the chunkiest plays, you begin to understand why coaches include them as part of their super secret Stoncutters language.

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Which comes first: having a quarterback who’s worth protecting, or securing the pieces of an offensive line that can protect a quarterback?

Most would say the former, and it wouldn’t be close. In an increasingly quarterback-driven league, good is merely adequate at that position.

But what if you’re a general manager and your quarterback recently suffered a significant injury, leaving a lingering question mark heading into this season? And what if although you’re confident he can come back and do so strongly, you need to see him run, scramble, and get hit for a full season prior to making a decision on his future with your team?

That’s where Texans general manager Rick Smith is with Matt Schaub, whose contract expires next March. And that’s why he prioritized Schaub’s primary protector as he was digging into his money sack.

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There are only three zeros in that number. NFL owners can’t actually see or read any number that has less than four zeros. They once knew how to count that low, but they haven’t needed to use numbers that small in years.

As we prepare to begin another week of preseason play tonight with replacement officials who once worked the mean high school and lingerie football fields, talks are still in the not talking phase between the NFL and its regular officials. It’s not an ideal situation for a league that preaches player safety, only a year after player safety was a major talking point during labor negotiations that threatened the 2011 season.

Speaking of which, if you take only a cursory glance at the coverage of the ongoing lockout of the regular NFL zebras, it looks quite familiar. There are accusations of accusing, and claims that statements of fact are entirely false, and then the standard bickering and belittling. Good times.

But once we get past that forest, there’s some interesting math in the latest statement made by the Referee’s Association.

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Sometimes when I type things here on the blog machine, I make predictions and they’re right. Not oftentimes, just sometimes. Rare times.

And when I try to predict the outcome of future events and am correct, I feel the urge to remind you. I then I try to suppress that urge, knowing full well that such an action leads to an image of pretentious douchebagery, and I’ll acquire a reputation of being a person who thoroughly enjoys the fragrance of his own flatulence.

Or perhaps it would just further that image. Either way, nothing good comes of such an action, which is fine, because one can only be boastful once a correct statement is made. So being restrained isn’t something I’ve had to worry about very often, meaning what’s about to happen could be a first in GLS history.

I could be right about something. Thank you, Tarvaris Jackson, and your replacement level quarterbacking skills.

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The Cowboys were already experiencing enough pain while watching Tony Romo and his fruitless efforts to remain stationary in the pocket for several nano seconds during their preseason opener Monday night. But that wasn’t literal pain, although the sieve quality of Dallas’ offensive line could soon lead to bones protruding from skin. Like, say, a punctured lung.

But now the pain from that pounding has taken a literal form, as tight end Jason Witten is reportedly set to miss significant time with a spleen injury.

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At this point, whenever I write anything about the Jets this preseason, I do it fully aware that I’m being abused as Rex Ryan’s play puppet. It hurts that I don’t mean more than that to him, but the rejection will wear off. It always does.

But this time fingers are meeting keys because the Jets may be about to actually follow through with an experiment in a preseason game, and once said experiment surfaces in the preseason, it’s one step closer to becoming a regular-season reality, with the Jets’ Frankenstein being deployed during a game that matters.

The monstrosity I’m referring to is, of course, Antonio Cromartie at wide receiver.

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