|Posted by TheBEEZER 9 Hours Ago
Okay, today we ask, who do you think was the best all-time MLB Catcher?
When historians look back at the 2011 NFL season, there will be little attention given to the fact it was one of the sloppiest seasons ever played in the league's history. Perhaps a slight nod of acknowledgement to the players lockout that pretty much wiped out training camp and retarded the development of the game.
Another footnote was how the game got softer, thanks to another laundry list of rules that effeminate football to the point it now practically resembles basketball with pads on. This mission, led by commissioner Roger Goodell, contradicts a history the league uses in their advertisements with pride. Commercials that celebrate gridiron warriors bloodied in a battle amongst the trenches that haven't been seen throughout the NFL in decades.
As the playoffs commence this weekend, no team may better personify the league right now than the Denver Broncos. After beginning the season 1-4, Denver rattled off seven victories in eight weeks before finishing the year with three straight losses.
Tim Tebow got a lions share of the credit for the Broncos victories, which included three in overtime. The defense gave up 17 of fewer points seven times this year, but the quarterback dominated the headlines. His image of being a wholesome religious boy captured so much attention, it drowned out critics who pointed to Tebow's miniscule 46.5 completion percentage this season.
Some considered him no more than a glorified fullback when he entered the 2011, while others of a modern day version Bobby Douglass. A second round draft pick by the Chicago Bears in 1969, the fellow lefty quarterback ended his 11 NFL seasons with a 43 percent completion percentage.
Douglass could run better than Tebow, once holding the record for most rushing yards gained by a quarterback when he churned out 968 yards in 14 games during the 1972 season. He averaged 69.1 yards rushing per game, which is better than the 64.9 yards Michael Vick had in 2006 when he surpassed Douglass' record in a 16 game season.
Tebow piled up 660 yards and six touchdowns on the ground this year. He played mistake-free football much of the year until the last two games of the year, where he tossed four of his six total interceptions. Tebow completed just 19 of 51 attempts for 245 yards over that time.
Denver still reached the playoffs despite an abysmal ending to a forgettable NFL season, thanks to playing in a division where three teams finished 8-8 and the fourth team went 7-9. The AFC West was perhaps the most mediocre in the NFL in 2011, which is a statement in itself because the NFC West, NFC East and AFC East were far from impressive as well.
Coaches and general managers on many inept teams suffered from the shortened season to the extent they lost their jobs. Yet the NFL, as it has for the past 40 years, continued to rake in piles of cash even though the product they present today recedes and mollifies each snap of the ball under the Goodell regime.
Image over substance is now in play as receivers and quarterbacks prance around untouched. College football shows the future is bleaker with recent bowl games where teams frequently combining to put up 80 or more points.
Defense is now as extinct as the commercialized images the NFL sells of warriors battling because now accolades are attained minus a struggle. Where honing skills through practice has now joined the defense as a spectator.
My cousin 7thStoneFromTheSun is nowhere to be found, though I did receive a blank postcard from Guam recently. While I will assume his prediction duties this week, it should be noted he finished 2011 with an overall record of 154-95
Cincinnati Bengals @ Houston Texans
The Bengals got into the playoffs because of a stingy defense that carried an erratic offense led by two rookies. The defense ended the season ranked seventh in yards allowed and ninth in points given up. While wide receiver A.J. Green, running back Cedric Benson and quarterback Andy Dalton are the key offensive weapons, Jermaine Gresham and Jerome Simpson also contribute heavily.
The Texans are playing in their first playoff game in franchise history. It is also the first time Houston has hosted a playoff game since 1993, when the Oilers accomplished the feat before becoming the Tennessee Titans not long afterwards. The Texans are also the first team from Houston to win a division title since that 1993 season.
Much has been made of the key injuries Houston's offense incurred this season. Quarterbacks Matt Schaub and Matt Leinart were lost for the season by the 12th game, and star wide receiver Andre Johnson suited up for just seven contests himself.
But the team finished with a 10-6 record thanks to a smothering defense that was second in the league in yards allowed and fourth in points given up. This was even accomplished despite losing star defender Mario Williams in the fifth game for the season.
Rookies J.J. Watt and Brooks Reed were special this year, but linebackers Conner Barwin and Brian Cushing have been stars in their own right. Cornerback Johnathan Joseph made the Pro Bowl, but his bookend, Jason Allen, was just as effective. Brice McCain and Kareem Jackson have also been solid, so opponents have found it difficult to pass the ball successfully often this year.
Cincinnati will need their defense and running game to be special this week. Houston will have Johnson back to help their rookie quarterback, but his limit appears to be no more than 45 snaps. The Texans have a powerful running game that was first in attempts, second in yards gained and third in touchdowns scored. While the Bengals were tenth in rushing yards allowed, they finished 20th in touchdowns given up.
Halfbacks Benson and Arian Foster will get a lot of attention, but the effectiveness of reserves Ben Tate and Bernard Scott may determine the outcome. Tate churned out 942 yards this season as he proved to be the best backup running back in the game today.
Dalton may make less mistakes than T.J. Yates, thanks to more snaps, but both teams will have the benefit of playing in the climate controlled Texans stadium. Return men Jacoby Jones, Danieal Manning and Brandon Tate could make a big play that breaks open the game.
These two teams battled just under a month ago, where the Texans prevailed with a 20-19 victory on a late touchdown pass from Yates to Kevin Walter. Houston had gained 127 more yards but coughed up two more turnovers than Cincinnati.
Johnson and Green will draw special defensive attention from two units that have excelled all season. Both franchises rosters are young and inexperienced, so several members will be participating in the first playoff games of their careers.
Once all the nervousness subsides, the defenses should take over. Houston's home field advantage will help carry their team a long way, but the combination of Foster and Ben Tate should drive the Texans into the next round.
24 Bengals 16
Detroit Lions @ New Orleans Saints
Many pundits are expecting an offensive battle in this game, mainly because both teams have offenses that can put up points in bunches. The two teams squared off in the beginning of December and gained 904 yards, with the Lions outgunning New Orleans by 28 yards in their 31-17 loss to the Saints.
Detroit's defense has been a major disappointment in 2011. Their vaunted defensive line never excelled as expected and the secondary was frequently ripped apart by the opponents passing attack. The Lions gave up 20 or more points 12 times this season, while giving up less than 312 total yards just once.
The Lions final game of 2011 saw them cough up a season high 550 yards, which included six touchdown passes and 480 yards to a fourth-year backup quarterback who entered the contest with 515 career yards and nine touchdowns off of 88 attempts. Detroit gained 25 more yards but lost 45-41.
The offense ranked fourth in scoring and fifth in yards gained this year, but Detroit's defense ranked 23 in both points and yards allowed. The running game was amongst the very worst in football, ranking 29th in total yards gained.
New Orleans was led by a balanced offensive attack that relied mainly on Pro Bowl quarterback Drew Brees. Brees set an NFL record this year with 5,476 yards passing, surpassing Hall of Famer Dan Marino. Detroit's Matthew Stafford wasn't too shabby himself, tossing the ball for a franchise record 5,038 yards and 41 scores. Brees had 46 touchdown passes.
The Super Bowl XLIV MVP now has set or tied several Saints franchise records. He set six NFL records in 2011, which includes most completions in a season, most 300 yard passing games in a season, most consecutive 300 yard passing games, most consecutive games with 350 yards passing and highest completion percentage in a season. He also has set or tied 16 other NFL records in his career thus far.
The Saints gained the most yards in the NFL this season while scoring the second most points. Besides having the top passing attack, the running game gained the sixth most yards in the league this season.
New Orleans relies heavily on Brees, but the quarterback has a plethora of weapons at his disposal. Four different running backs gained 374 yards or more while nine players ended up in double digits in receptions.
Detroit will be facing a defense that finished 24 in yards allowed, but 13th in total points scored upon. The Saints only picked off nine passes this season, but safety Roman Harper finished the season by leading the team with 96 tackles and a career best 7.5 sacks.
If New Orleans cannot rush the football, the arms of both Brees and Stafford will be put to use seemingly every play. The Saints run defense was the 12th best in the NFL this year, so the Lions anemic ground game faces quite a challenge ahead of them.
Greg Williams is a defensive coordinator who is known to love blitz packages to throw opposing quarterbacks off their game. If Detroit fails to run the ball, he will load up his Saints defense with complex packages. The New Orleans defense garnered 33 sacks this season, but Detroit gave up 36 sacks this season.
New Orleans has scored over 40 points six times this year and have never scored less than 20 in a game. Their defense has given up 20 or less than points in nine contests while Detroit has accomplished that feat just five times.
A bunch of yards should be gained in this game, but it may end up where the Lions end up fruitlessly try to catch up to the Saints all game. The Lions have had a habit of giving up a ton of points early before coming back, but not many teams have stopped the Saints from scoring in 2011.
48 Lions 34
Atlanta Falcons @ New York Giants
Two of the most erratic and inconsistent teams of the 2011 NFL season meet here. Both barely made the playoffs following underwhelming seasons that will soon be forgotten.
While injuries basically buried the Giants before the season started, they fought through a mediocre NFC East to capture the division crown in the last game of the season. Atlanta did finish the year with a respectable 10-6 record, but it seemed a far cry from expectations that had been placed on them after winning the NFC South in 2010 with a 13-3 record.
Atlanta might have seemed to regress slightly on offense this year, after moving up in the draft to snag wide receiver Julio Jones in the first round of the 2011 draft. They finished fifth in scoring in 2010, averaging 25.9 points per game, while finishing seventh in scoring this year by averaging 25.1 points per contest.
But the Falcons did gain 532 more yards while quarterback Matt Ryan and Michael Turner had very similar seasons to 2010. Star wide receiver Roddy White had 15 less receptions and eight less scores this season, but Jones picked up the slack while future Hall of Fame tight end Tony Gonzales remained consistent and excellent as always.
The defense was also an area that regressed in a few areas as opposed to 2010. While finishing fifth last year in points allowed, Atlanta finished this season 18th. They also finished at plus eight in the giveaway/ takeaway ratio differential this year, as opposed to the plus 14 they had in 2010.
Atlanta did improve in yards allowed, interceptions, sacks and run defense this season, but they also had eight contests where they gave up 23 or more points. The Falcons offense had 11 games where they scores 23 or more points.
Atlanta is a well balanced team that has the talent, but gives the impression they are on the verge of exploding and have yet to do so. Most see the roster and fear any week will be the day they put it all together on a consistent basis, but it has yet to happen. Yet it is evident there is enough firepower there to win a Super Bowl.
The Giants winning their division, no matter how mediocre it was in 2011, shows a great deal of experience and character. They went through much of the season with a defensive secondary filled with players that would not have made the team if it were not for the numerous injuries to hit that unit.
The New York defense finished 29th in passing yards allowed, 27th in total yards allowed and 25th in points given up. Yet the offense finished eighth in yards gained and ninth in points scored. The running game was the worst in the NFL, but the passing game was ranked fifth in yards and sixth in passing attempts and touchdowns scored.
Pro Bowl quarterback Eli Manning had nine receivers end up with double digits in catches. Wide receivers Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks combined for 158 catches for 2,728 and 16 touchdowns this year.
If the Falcons cornerback duo of Dunta Robinson and Brent Grimes shuts down Cruz and Nicks, New York will be in major trouble. Atlanta may have too many weapons for the Giants to stop, bit no one can really be sure what versions of these teams will take the field Sunday.
37 Giants 20
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Denver Broncos
Tim Tebow will run onto the field Sunday with the cameras fixated on him. Mainly to appease a nation where religion is important, but also because he happens to play a position the NFL puts on a pedestal and carries like a golden child. Tebow truly embodies this NFL dream.
Yet he will face a nightmare on the sabbath in the form of the Pittsburgh Steelers defense. A unit that ranked ranked first in both points a yards allowed, this veteran group will come into the salivating at the chance the expose a limited player with a questionable arm.
Pittsburgh will be dealing with injuries to starting halfback Rashard Mendenhall and strong safety Ryan Clark, but the team has more than enough depth at these positions to succeed. Plus their quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has two Super Bowl rings and obviously knows how to win the big game.
The Steelers win the old school way of controlling the clock while the defense destroys their opponents. Tebow, playing in the first playoff game of his very young career, will have to summon all of his abilities to keep his team within reach of victory.
Ten Steelers have 11 or more receptions, so the Broncos defense will have their hands full trying to contain the Pittsburgh offensive onslaught. Denver's defense finished the 2011 season 20th in yards allowed and 24th in points scored upon.
The Broncos offense wasn't any better, finishing 25th in scoring and 23rd in yards gained. Their best player, halfback Willis McGahee, finished the season with 1,199 rushing yards. Denver had just two players with more than 19 receptions this season.
This game should get ugly quick. Unless the Broncos special teams and defense is exceptional, it should be over before halftime. This learning process may help Tebow one day, but teams have recently figured him out and there needs to be a dramatic improvement in his game if he wants to remain the starting quarterback for Denver in the future. This improvement, however, will probably not happen this Sunday.
27 Broncos 9
Like a pound of high grade skunk smuggled past the vigilant guard dogs at an airport by being crazy glued to the taint of a 400 lbs midget, it is time for POINTLESS PONDERING.
Does anyone besides me make the huge mistake of turning on ESPN while an actual sporting event is not being broadcast? Not that crap the network pretends is a sport, like poker or competitive eating, but a sport where a participant actually breaks a sweat from physical activity while not sitting on their fat asses?
Turning on the boob tube one day, I saw ESPN oozing out a gabfest called "First Take." The shrow sprinkles a few active and retired athletes around three women who are the main characters of this pretend talk show. The most dramatic queen of the three is a geriatric know-nothing named Skip Bayless.
Bayless, who probably couldn't tell you who George Halas was even though he was born ahead of Papa Bear, has the memory of a fruit fly and thinks that everything at this moment is the 'greatest of all-time.' This pole smoker is known throughout ESPN as the former sports journalist who tries to get attention by besmirching athletes like Lebron James.
ESPN has been in mourning since Brett Favre retired finally a few months ago. Missing scrolling his name in huge letters constantly across the viewers screen, they still mention the Hyckocrite several times a day even if Favre is no longer part of the sports landscape and was last seen being accused of molesting women younger than his own children.
They knew they had a replacement lined up. A guy who, compared to Favre, is akin to being near beer versus real beer. Yet, like Favre, his concocted image far outweighs his actual abilities or talents. In others words : all hype and no substance. Just like EPSN itself.
Bayless and his fellow paparazzi have spent the 2011 NFL season drooling and batin' to Tim Tebow's picturesque image. Tebow, who is a third-string quarterback who even has a former first-round draft pick bust named Brady Quinn ahead of him on the depth chart, has become a polarizing figure thanks to the constant attention he receives from stalkers who pose as sports media members.
Tebow is not even close to being a NFL quarterback in most experts eyes, but do not tell that to Bayless. The old fruit spends every possible moment he can calling Tebow the best player the Denver Broncos have, because Bayless is a typical NFL puppet who believes the game revolves around the universe of this one position on the gridiron.
Ever since ESPN took over the Monday Night Football duties, they have tried to rival the NFL's own network in soft coverage they try to pawn off as news to viewers, carefully trying not to besmirch the monster entity. They earned this by constant on-air fellatio on the likes of Favre and other questionable characters with personal lives just as shady as the Hyckocrite's is.
A few weeks ago, Denver was losing agame on Monday Night Football. Broncos starting quarterback Kyle Orton played admirably, despite having terrible blocking and a shoddy rushing attack that produced a paltry 25 yards from his running backs against one of the worst run defenses in the league.
While Orton threw for over 300 yards in a game Denver would lose by a field goal, ESPN spent their times using the cameras to scan the stands for any idiot wearing a Tebow jersey or holding a sign professing their love for a player who has yet to do anything worth noting on a professional football field. The same "Christian" fans who would later piss away $10 grand on a billboard showing support for Tebow instead of doing something for society... like feeding homeless children.
Skippy has twisted his manpon since this moment, as well as showing the world once again he knows absoloutely nothing about football. Bayless has basically called Orton a loser while proclaiming Tebow to be the next Favre. He continued his tirade even after Orton led Denver to a win after getting help from an effective rushing attack last Sunday.
It doesn't really seem it will matter if Tebow is a career reserve or a future Hall of Famer to ESPN, because the network has found their new deity to stand along Favre on the ESPN pedestal. They will continue to feed their sheep while dropping his and the Hyckocrite's name at every turn possible, while viewers are forced to watch people like Bayless drools incessantly at perverted dreams that will never come true.
Breaking news! A Cincinnati Bengals player is in trouble with the law. No...wait! Make that two Bengals. As Led Zeppelin once said, "The Song Remains The Same."
Some franchises are forever snakebitten by bad karma, it seems. The ghosts of men Paul Brown, who founded the team, screwed over seem to be drowning this team in ignorance and forgettable obscurity. Somewhere upstairs, the ghosts of Mac Speedie and others are probably smiling in content as yet another Bengals player embarrasses himself, his family and teammates.
Whether the player is a moron like Adam "Pac Man" Jones paralyzing a person for life after making it 'rain money' at a strip club, or a deceased player like Chris Henry for having continual alcohol issues while alive, the Bengals franchise has had their players arrested over 32 times since 2000. It is easily this highest number amongst NFL teams, and this issue is a huge reason the team has gone 73-104 since 2000.
Brown, a legendary Hall of Fame coach who won seven championships in his 17 years with the Cleveland Browns, founded the Bengals in 1968. Though he coached in Cincinnati for just eight years, he got the franchise off to a fast start by helping them to a 55-56-1 record. He then ran the team from his offices from 1976 to 1991, when he died of complications from pneumonia.
The Bengals reached the playoffs three times with Brown as their head coach, then four more times with him as the general manager. This includes the only two Super Bowl appearances in franchise history, where Brown's teams lost both times to the San Francisco 49ers. The team has reached the playoffs just twice since Brown passed away.
It is ironic the team lost both Super Bowls to the 49ers Hall of Fame head coach Bill Walsh. Walsh is another person who was once screwed over by Brown after having been a Bengals assistant coach from 1968 to 1975. He was promised the Bengals head coaching job for years, but offensive line coach Bill "Tiger" Johnson was chosen instead.
Johnson resigned five games into the 1978 season while Walsh became the San Francisco head coach in 1979 and won three Super Bowls in his nine seasons on the Niners sidelines. Brown was accused of almost preventing Walsh of even getting the head coaching job in San Francisco once by Walsh himself.
Walsh claimed that Brown "worked against my candidacy" to be a head coach anywhere in the league. "All the way through I had opportunities, and I never knew about them," Walsh said. "And then when I left him, he called whoever he thought was necessary to keep me out of the NFL."
It is reminiscent of Brown's issues with Speedie, a Pro Bowl wide receiver during the Browns championship years. When Speedie wanted a raise in pay, he was rebuffed by Brown. He then bolted to the Canadian Football League for a bigger paycheck.
Years later, Speedie became a coach and scout in the American Football League. The Bengals joined the AFL initially, so the two men once met on the gridiron before a contest. When Speedie extended his hand as a greeting, Brown turned his back on him after telling Speedie, "Yes, I know. You're the one who went to Canada."
Speedie went to his grave believing Brown's influence prevented his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. There are other frustrating examples of how Paul Brown infuriated people along his career, but time constraints will inhibit this endeavor.
His son Mike hasn't done any better since taking over the team, as the Bengals have gone 113-181 under his regime. He is known for his frugality and much as he is for overseeing squads that frequently have members ending up arrested.
Brown has frustrated people himself, as recently seen by quarterback Carson Palmer's refusal to play for the team and walking away from millions of dollars after Brown turned down his request to be traded to another team.
Now current players Jerome Simpson and Anthony Collins are in trouble after being arresting in a drug sting where over five pounds of marijuana was taken from Simpson's home after undercover agents delivered about two pounds of the drug to the wide receivers home.
Simpson, who is leading the Bengals in receptions this year, has been viewed a disappointment as a player since being drafted in the second round of the 2008 draft by the team. Before 2011, he had appeared in just 11 games and had 21 receptions in his career. Collins, drafted two rounds behind Simpson in 2008, has started has started 16 of 34 career games as an offensive tackle.
Both of their NFL careers are in jeopardy right now, a conundrum the league offices are used to dealing with when it comes to Bengals players. It may seem to be business as usual for this team, but the act has to have worn thin for the NFL long ago. Perhaps the only way out of these constant messes for the Bengals is to hold an exorcism in an attempt to finally bring this team good karma
Yoooooooooooo! Dis iz 7thStone once again! I decided too unplastksoirgeree myself and get my good looks back. I got tired runnin round wifout my handsum mug.
Yo! I iz 21-11 overall now after goin 11-5 las weak. Not two shabby, not to strong. Capeesh?
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Carolina Panthers
I know Cam Newton has a lot of passin yards, but yoooooooo! Da Panthers dont run da ball no mo! WTF iz dey paying DeAngelo Williams all dat cash and givin him da ball on just 22 times so far? Jonathan Stewart, who ran for 1,133 yards in 2009, has only 23. Newton leads da teem in rushing attempts and yards, besides bein da only Panther to run four a score dis seasun.
I don't care how good Newton iz, dat is STUPID Yo! Dis teem kneads two run too win! For all dat passin, dey iz still only 18th in scoring in da NFL so far. Da D is 26th in points allowed.
Dey should move up dis week facin a Jags teem dat has one player, Maurice Jones-Drew, who can actually do sumfin with da football. Jack Del Rio's gamble on cuttin David Garrard has looked dumb so far because his replacemint sucked donkey balls. Capeesh?
Now Jacksonville is starting there rookie quarterback, but dis guy cant do any badder den da scrub dat was their las weak. Still, dey is goin to feed MJD da ball like 30 times or more. Dat will bee da key hear.
Jaguars 23 Panthers 21
Detroit Lions @ Minnesota Vikings
Da Donovan McNabb Era haz gone so good dat Vikings fans iz calling four rookie Christian Ponder. Dis teen cant score and dey iz ranked 31st in da league in passing.
Detroit iz doin just what we all tought dey iz doin. Yo! Dis teem iz four reel. Capeesh? Watch dem and sea what I meen.
Lions 34 Vikings 20
San Francisco 49ers @ Cincinnati Bengals
Yo! Not only did da Bungles top receiver get busted with sum good smoke by da Feds da other day, da teem just found out top running back Cedric Benson iz being suspended three games. Guess Benson can go finish out his jail time now after his apeel iz reduces his sentence or gets rejected next Tuesday.
Da Niners blew a win las week, but dat iz cuz Alex Smith is just a crap QB. Dis piece of crap is going to be benched wifin three weeks, mark my words. But da 49ers iz pissed enough over las weak to win dis one.
49ers 24 Bengals 19
Miami Dolphins @ Cleveland Browns
OK, da Browns iz not as good as I tought dey would be. Dey iz young, so I still feal dey will bee good by da end of da yeer. Miami iz da better teem hear, espeshully after finding a good running back in Daniel Thomas las weak.
Dolphins 27 Browns 24
New England Patriots @ Buffalo Bills
Everyone iz happy da Bills is 2-0. But da dreem stops hear. A reality check is cummin. Capeesh?
Patriots 37 Bills 27
New York Giants @ Philadelphia Eagles
I saw dis stat dat Mike Vick completed 43% of his passes against da Giants blitz las yeer. Now da dog killer is hurtin in his chicken neck.
Still, da Jints secondary sucks ass and Eli Manning just has had reality's scrotum teabagging his girly ass so far. Dis boob says he in a elite QB, but do elite quarterbacks lead a 27th ranked scoring offense wif a 80 QB rating? Dat ratin goes down more against dem three Pro Bowl cornerbacks Philly has.
Eagles 30 Giants 21
Denver Broncos @ Tennessee Titans
Da Titans shocked da NFL in weak 2 by beatin da Ravens HANDILY with no running game to speek of. Chris Johnson looks like a guy who didn't do training camp with his 77 yards on 33 carries.
But dat defense is da story Yo! Ranked fouth in da league in points allowed, it iz hard to pass on dem. Dey already have alreddy forced 8 turnovers.
Denver kneads to run da ball hear. Dey cant rely on just chuckin passes, so mebbe Tim Teblow will run a few option plays since dat iz about allhe iz good four.
Titans 20 Broncos 10
Houston Texans @ New Orleans Saints
Since 1950, only 11 running backs have run for over 100 yards in their first 2 career games. This list includes Hall of Famers Earl Campbell and Marshall Faulk. Another guy is dis list iz Ben Tate of da Texans. Look four him do get his third easily against a terruble Saints run defense.
Drew Brees will be testin out Wade Phillips revamped Houston defense. They rank first in both points and yards allowed so far. Dis will bee da difference as dat explosive Texans offense wears down a mediocre Saints defense.
Texans 38 Saints 27
New York Jets @ Oakland Raiders
Watchin da Raiders blow dat win against Buffalo las weak was ugly yo. While dey can score points, dey cant stop opponents from scoring. Da Raider have scored and given up 58 points, not a formula four success.
Da Jets dont let opponents score. Oaklands rushing attack is there best strength, while da Jets run defense is dat squads best strength. Plus New York kneads to stay pace wif da Pats yo.
Jets 34 Raiders 20
Kansas City Chiefs @ San Diego Chargers
Da Chiefs are goin so bad, head coach Todd Haley will bee luckin two win five games dis yeer. All there best players are getting hurt so bad, dey iz out all seesun. Da Chargers offense iz just two powerfull.
Chargers 42 Chiefs 14
Baltimore Ravens @ Saint Louis Rams
Da Ravens got embarrassed last weak after embarrasin da Steelers da weak before. Saint Louis iz goin to attack dat suspect Ravens secondary dat iz ranked 28th in passing yards alloud. With deep threat Lee Evans out dis weak, Baltimore will knead to rely on da run game and young tight ends.
Sam Bradford won't have Danny Amendola two throw too, so Mike Sims-Walker will knead two bee big. Even if star halfback Steven Jackson plays this weekend, he may be best served is the passing attack since Baltimore is stout against the run.
Ravens 24 Rams 21
Atlanta Falcons @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Game of the Week
This could be a helluva battle! Da Bucs rediscovered the run game las weak, witch will helps against a mediocre Falcons defense that is 28th in points alloued and 27th in yards alloud. Tampa Bay cannot leen on da pass game as much as dey have da furst too weaks.
Matt Ryan has been incunsistunt so far, but he did help Atlanta cum back in a thrillin win las weak. Pro Bowl halfback Michael "Burner" Turner has been da Falcons biggest star this yeer, which is not a good deel for a Buccaneers defense disappointedly ranked 31st in run defense and 28th in total yards alloud.
Da best run game should win dis, witch iz why I iz goin wif Atlanta.
Falcons 23 Buccaneers 17
Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears
Da Bears have played no teem more den dey have da Pack. Though they are 91-83-6 against Green Bay, da teems have met just twice in postseesun. Da last time was in da 2010 NFC Championship Game, where da Packers prevailed 21-14. In da three games dey played las yeer, every contest was decided by a one score difference.
Da 2011 Bears season iz lookin a lot like 2010, where da defense is carrying a erratic offense. The Bears offense kneads two step up dis weak cuz da Pack has da worst pass defense in da NFL after givin up 800 yards in da air alreddy.
But da Packers got weapons galore on offense. Plus dey take care of da football by not turnin it over. The secondary is da weekness of da Chicago defense, so I expect Aaron Rodgers to pick them apart when he kneads it mostest.
Packers 23 Bears 21
Arizona Cardinals @ Seattle Seahawks
Yo! Snoozeville! Capeesh? Let's leeve it at Larry Fitzgerald has a big day.
Cardinals 30 Seahawks 20
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Indianapolis Colts
OK, Kerry Collins iz alreddy banged up and hasn't even been in da Colts system for to months. Dis iz not a good sign when facing a angry Steelers teem still seething for having there butts kicked two weaks ago.
Steelers 34 Colts 10
Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys
OK, dis rivalry is like all NFL rivalrees today. Watered down by free agency, so dey have A LOT less meening to da players these daze. But Dallas is banged up good and da undefeeted Redskins iz healthy.
If dat moron Kyle Shanahan does almost blow it again wif his crappy play calling, like how the jackass forgot da run game in da second half of las weaks win after Tim Hightower had dominated da furst half, den Washington should get there 39th win in 101 games versus da Cowboys thanks too dat solid defense.
Redskins 27 Cowboys 24
1. Green Bay Packers
2. Houston Texans
3. New York Jets
4. New England Patriots
5. Detroit Lions
6. Washington Redskins
7. Buffalo Bills
8. Atlanta Falcons
9. Philadelphia Eagles
10. Baltimore Ravens
11. Pittsburgh Steelers
12. Chicago Bears
13. Tennessee Titans
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
15. New Orleans Saints
16. San Diego Chargers
17. Oakland Raiders
18. New York Giants
19. Dallas Cowboys
20. Cincinnati Bengals
21. Jacksonville Jaguars
22. Arizona Cardinals
23. Minnesota Vikings
24. Miami Dolphins
25. San Francisco 49ers
26. Cleveland Browns
27. Saint Louis Rams
28. Denver Broncos
29. Seattle Seahawks
30. Carolina Panthers
31. Indianapolis Colts
32. Kansas City Chiefs
OK, I gots two go. I gots dis fine hunny lined up at dis club I know. She can spin on a pole, capeesh? As dey say in Ol' Messico = A.M.F.
While the NFL has had some recent games on Thanksgiving make families eat while watching other programs on television, or choose to abstain from any viewing whatsoever, this year may be a year where one can happily fill themselves with tryptophan while watching a couple of games that could be competitive.
The Detroit Lions have hosted the Thanksgiving Classic since 1934. They have won just twice since 2000, one being a 34-9 pasting of the New England Patriots in 2000. That was the first year head coach Bill Belichick had the job with New England, and they went 5-11 that season. They won Super Bowl XXXVI the next year. The last Thanksgiving Classic they played was in 2002, where they defeated the Lions 20-12 with the help of three turnovers and 111 yards on 10 receptions by Troy Brown.
The Dallas Cowboys have played the Thanksgiving Classic 42 times, winning 27 games. Though their 2010 season is over, they will play for pride and try to spoil the dreams of others. They face a New Orleans Saints squad that has won their last three games and needs to keep going in order to stay within reach of the hot Atlanta Falcons in order to have a chance to win the NFC South.
The New York Jets have played the Thanksgiving Classic six times, winning three. They won the first game the American Football League played in 1960 while still named the Titans. They got stomped on in 2007 by the Dallas Cowboys 34-3, the last time they played on Thanksgiving. They will face a struggling Cincinnati Bengals team that has never played in a Thanksgiving Classic.
New England Patriots @ Detroit Lions
The Patriots have to be happy with their 31-28 win over the Indianapolis Colts last Sunday for a few reasons. The victory keeps them tied for first place in the AFC East with the Jets as they are going to host New York next week in a game that could decide who gets the division crown. They also picked off Peyton Manning three times, including one that clinched the win late in the fourth quarter, with a young secondary much maligned all season.
Detroit is a young team that is beat up, but competes most weeks in spite of everything. Though they have won just two games all year, they have lost five games by five or less points. One loss came on a very dubious officiating call in the first week of the season.
Though their starting quarterback is hurt again, the back up has filled in superbly. If they could get half the performance of a reserve halfback in place of a starter battling a bad toe, the Lions may have a few more victories. Detroit has the sixth best passing attack in the league, but their anemic running game is the second worst in the NFL.
New England's offense is one of balance. The rushing and passing attack are both ranked 16th in the league. While Detroit's 13th ranked pass defense might have some successes, thanks to the seven sacks by Rookie of the Year candidate Ndamukong Suh and four more by veteran Kyle Vanden Bosch, the run defense has not been good.
Tom Brady will have to get rid of the pass quickly, relying heavily on slot receivers like Wes Welker. He also needs to hand the ball off over 20 times at least. The question is which Patriots back can be effective. Benjarvis Green-Ellis, the oft-injured Fred Taylor, and the diminutive Danny Woodhead should all touch the ball often.
Patriots 23 Lions 21
New Orleans Saints @ Dallas Cowboys
Dallas has won two of their three games this year the last two weeks by playing solid football in the second half of each game. Running the ball more than passing it was the key, something Jason Garrett ignored as offensive coordinator the first eight games the Cowboys played this year.
While the Saints have the second best pass defense in the NFL right now, the run defense is ranked 13th. The offense has gotten better each week, but that is because guys are getting healthy again. Though starting running back Pierre Thomas is expected to miss his his seventh game, rookie Chris Ivory has done a fantastic job replacing him and Reggie Bush is expected to return after missing the last two months with a bad leg.
Dallas has one of the worst defenses in football, ranked 22nd overall. They give up an average of 342 yards a game, including 117 yards on the ground. If Ivory and Bush are effective, Saints quarterback Drew Brees will have even more fun lighting up a thin and banged up Cowboys secondary with five receivers who have 23 or more receptions so far.
Saints 38 Cowboys 21
Cincinnati Bengals @ New York Jets
It is too bad for the Bengals that football games last 60 minutes, because they can be pretty good for 15 to 30 minutes. Whether it is throwing up 22 unanswered points in a quarter against Atlanta or going up by 21 points at halftime to Buffalo before losing by 18, the dysfunctional Bengals have little luck in 2010. Despite defeating the Baltimore Ravens in the second week of the season, the Bengals have lost six games by eight or less points.
The Jets are a team that has lived on the edge the last five weeks, thanks to four wins that required them to come back from deficits late in the game. Some has been the luck of bad defensive plays by opponents, but winning a game in the NFL is an accomplishment however it is garnered.
The vaunted Jets rushing attack has been sluggish the last five games. The 72 yards on 20 carries that Shonn Greene had in their overtime win against Cleveland has been the best performance. This is a far cry from when Greene and LaDainian Tomlinson both ran for over 100 yards six weeks ago against the Bills. Tomlinson has helped alleviate this by catching 43 balls so far.
New York needs to do well against the 23rd ranked Bengals run defense. This would go a long way in boosting confidence heading into a huge match up in New England next week, a game that could decide the winner of the AFC East. Though the Bengals have the 18th ranked pass defense, Leon Hall and Johnathan Joseph are excellent cornerbacks that have seven interceptions and a score between them.
The Jets defense has given up 20 or more points in six games this year, something they did just five times the whole 2009 season. Though injuries to the defensive line has hurt them this year, the back seven has only five interceptions so far and the pass rush has just 21 sacks. They had 32 sacks and 17 interceptions last year. They still hop on fumbles, getting 21 so far. They had 25 in 2009.
If Cincinnati can attack the secondary the whole game, they have a legitimate shot at winning. They have three wide receivers and a tight end with 35 receptions or more. Though running back Cedric Benson is not duplicating his 2009 performance that saw him ground out 1,251 yards, he still has 747 on 200 carries in 2010.
The Jets surely realize they can't look over the Bengals for the Patriots. They also must know they can't afford to keep hoping they can come back as the clock expires, though it has to make them feel good in knowing they have this ability. Expect a steady dose of Tomlinson and Greene to dictate pace.
Jets 23 Bengals 17
Quarterback : Ken Anderson
Anderson was drafted in the third round of the 1971 draft by the Bengals and ended up starting four games that year. Though he lost each start, Hall of Fame coach Paul Brown liked what he saw and named Anderson his full-time starter. He then proceeded to have six consecutive seasons with a winning record as a starter.
While showing a great ability to not turn over the ball often, Anderson began to excel. He led the NFL in completions, passing yards, completion percentage, passer rating, yards per game, and yards gained per attempt in 1974. He made his first Pro Bowl the next year after leading the league in passer rating, yards passing, yards gained per attempt, adjusted yards per attempt, and yards per game.
After making the Pro Bowl again in 1976, the team struggled between 1978 to 1980. They were the first losing seasons he had as a starter since his rookie year. This caused Anderson to rebound his team, which he did with a vengeance in 1981.
He became the first Bengals NFL MVP, Comeback Player of the Year, Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, and only Bert Bell Man of the Year Award winner in team history after a Pro Bowl and First Team All-Pro year that saw him toss a career best 29 touchdowns against just 10 interceptions. He led the NFL in touchdown percentage, interception percentage, adjusted yards per attempt, and passer rating. The Bengals reached Super Bowl XVI, where he completed 73.5 percent of his passes, which was 25. Both were Super Bowl records at the time, and he also scored on a five-yard run as Cincinnati lost to San Francisco.
The 1982 season was his last as a Pro Bowler. In a game against the San Diego Chargers, the team the Bengals beat in the famous "Freezer Bowl" in the AFC Championship the year before, Anderson and Hall of Famer Dan Fouts became the first quarterbacks in NFL history to both throw for over 400 yards in the same game. Anderson led the NFL in completions, completion percentage, interception percentage, and passer rating. His 70.6 completion percentage is an NFL record though Drew Brees tied it in the quarterback friendly rules of 2009.
Though he led the NFL in completion percentage in 1983, his game began to falter over the next two years as he had losing records and threw more interceptions than touchdowns each season. The Bengals then inserted 1984 second round pick Boomer Esiason as the starter, relegating the 36-year old Anderson to backup duty before retiring after 1986. Esiason, coincidentally, would become the second NFL MVP in Bengals history during 1988 after leading the team to the Super Bowl before losing to San Francisco.
Ken Anderson has somehow yet to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, though he is certainly worthy. As well as holding the record for completion percentage in a season, as well as once holding the Super Bowl completion percentage record, he once completed 20 of 22 passes against the mighty Steel Curtain defense of the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1974. He also has the second best postseason quarterback rating in NFL history.
He still ranks in the top-30 in completions, attempts, and passing yards in NFL history despite the fact he was sacked the ninth most ever. He once led the NFL in 1979 by being sacked 46 times. He also holds a team record by tossing for 447 yards in 1975, along with several other team records. Not only is he the first Bengals quarterback to go to the Pro Bowl or be named First Team All-Pro, his four Pro Bowls are the most ever by any Bengals quarterback.
Not only is Ken Anderson the winningest quarterback in team history, but he is an NFL great. The Bengals never allowed anyone to wear his jersey number until he took a job with the rival Steelers and earned a Super Bowl ring mentoring Ben Roethlisberger. If the Bengals ever create a Ring of Honor, Anderson may be one of the very first inducted.
Boomer Esiason, Greg Cook, and Jeff Blake deserve mention.
Fullback : Pete Johnson
Drafted in the second round of the 1977 draft, Johnson was teamed up with Archie Griffin again. The pair were together in college, where Griffin became the only person to win multiple Heisman Trophies. By his second year, Johnson was the main ball carrier for Cincinnati and also was used often in the passing game.
In 1979, he scored 14 times on the ground and once in the air, which was the third most in the league. After a solid 1980 season, he had his best year in the NFL in 1981, which was the only time Johnson went to the Pro Bowl. He set career highs with 274 carries for 1,077 yards, 46 receptions for 320 yards, and 16 total scores. It helped the Bengals reach their first Super Bowl in franchise history, as Johnson scored once in each playoff victory.
The 1982 season was shortened to just nine games, but Johnson was still able to run for 626 yards, catch 31 balls, and score seven times. He then tied his career best mark of 14 rushing touchdowns the next year, his last with the Bengals. He was traded to the San Diego Chargers for James Brooks and scored three times in three games before being dealt to the Miami Dolphins. After scoring nine times in 13 games, he retired.
Not only is his 64 rushing touchdowns the most in team history, the 5,421 rushing yards Johnson had was a team record until Corey Dillon passed it in 2002. It still ranks third most in team history, and the most by any Bengals fullback. His 14 rushing touchdowns was a team record until Icky Woods passed it by one in 1988. The 420 points he score ranks fifth in team history, and is the most by any non-kicker.
Pete Johnson is not only the first Bengals fullback to go to the Pro Bowl, but he is their best ever. A bruising runner with soft hands, he was also a crushing blocker who was one of the more underrated players of his time. Playing in the shadow of division rival Franco Harris, a Hall of Fame fullback, he didn't always get the notoriety or accolades he deserved. Still, Bengals fans know how good he was for their team.
Ickey Woods, Lorenzo Neal, and Larry Kinnebrew deserve mention.
Halfback : Corey Dillon
Dillon was drafted in the second round of the 1997 draft by the Bengals. He started just six games as a rookie because Ki-Jana Carter, the first overall pick of the 1995 draft, was ahead of him on the depth chart. It didn't stop Dillon from gaining 1,129 yards and scoring ten times on the ground. He also set a rookie record by running for 246 yards in one game. He also scored four times in that game, a team record that still stands today.
His first Pro Bowl year was in 1999, after gaining 1,200 yards. It was the first of three consecutive Pro Bowl games. He set a team record by running for 1,435 yards in 2000, a season that saw him set an then-NFL record by running for 278 yards in a game. He scored 13 times the next year, including a career long 96-yard jaunt that led the NFL and set a Bengals for longest offensive play ever.
The 2003 season was his seventh in the league, as well as the first time he failed to run for over 1,000 yards in a season. He was mostly injured that year, so the Bengals decided to lean on Rudi Johnson. Johnson, who had only played nine games in two years previously, would end up with the second most rushing yards in Bengals history when he was done.
The New England Patriots traded a second round draft pick for Dillon's services. The move paid off big, as he ran for a career best 1,635 yards on a career high 345 carries while tying his career best mark of 13 scores. He was named to his final Pro Bowl as he helped carry the Patriots to a Super Bowl XXXIX win. It was the first 1,600-yard rushing year in Patriots history, a record that still stands.
After two more solid seasons that saw him match his career best mark of 13 scores, despite missing four games and nine starts because of injuries, he retired at the end of the 2006 season. He is a member of the Patriots 2000's All-Decade Team.
Of the 18 records Dillon set with the Bengals, 16 still stand. He is the only Bengals back to have six consecutive 1,000-yard seasons, and three of them were the top ranked in Bengal history at the time. Johnson now holds the top spot, thus making them second, third, and fourth. He has the most rushing yards and yards from scrimmage in Cincinnati history. He also holds two of the top nine single game rushing performances in league history, and his 11,241 rushing yards is the 17th most in NFL history.
The three Pro Bowls he went to as a Bengals are one less than James Brooks as the most in team history. Cincinnati may have drafted him as insurance for Carter, still recovering from a devastating injury incurred as a rookie, but they ended up acquiring the best running back in team history. When the Bengals create their Ring of Honor, Corey Dillon should be amongst the first to go in.
James Brooks, Paul Robinson, Harold Green, Rudi Johnson, Essex Johnson, Boobie Clark, and Archie Griffin deserve mention.
Wide Receiver : Isaac Curtis
Curtis almost never had a career in pro football. He spent his first three years in college running track and playing as a little used halfback at the University of California before transferring to San Diego State for his senior year. The legendary Don Coryell was the head coach there, and he quickly switched Curtis to wide receiver. A star was quickly born and the Bengals used their first round pick, 15th overall, in 1973 to grab him.
He was named to the Pro Bowl in each of his first four seasons in the NFL. Not only did he grab 32 touchdown passes over that time, he averaged over twenty yards at catch on 200 receptions. Curtis led the NFL with a career best 21.2 yards per catch average in 1975 after accumulating a 21.1 average the season before.
His streak of Pro Bowls ended in 1977 after missing six games due to injuries, but he spent the rest of his career as a very productive member of the Bengals. The 1978 season saw him catch a career best 47 balls as the team went through personnel changes. They reached Super Bowl XVI in 1981 with Curtis and Cris Collinsworth teaming as an effective deep threat duo.
He retired after the 1984 season with 416 receptions, which was a team record at the time. It still ranks as the fifth best in team history. His 7,101 receiving yards was a team record until it was surpassed by Chad Ochocinco in 2007, and the 17.1 yards per catch Curtis averaged in his career is easily the best in franchise history by any Bengal with more than 94 catches with the team. His 53 touchdown catches still ranks third best in team history, and his four Pro Bowls are the second most by a Bengals wide receiver.
Cincinnati has had many great wide receivers in the history of their team, yet few have been the constant deep threat that Isaac Curtis was. He struck fear in opponents because it was common to see Curtis blow by defenders to catch a long pass. He was also excellent once grabbing the ball, showing off his skills that had him play running back in college.
Picking the greatest wide receiver in Bengals history is not easy because of Ochocinco, Collinsworth, Carl Pickens, Eddie Brown, and others, but Isaac Curtis is always in the discussion and amongst the first names mentioned always. He quite likely is the greatest receiver the team has ever had. It should be noted how he succeeded in the ten-yard chuck rule era while facing great cornerbacks who excelled in man-to-man defense like Hall of Famer Mel Blount, Zeke Moore, Clarence Scott, and Ron Bolton twice a year.
Wide Receiver : Cris Collinsworth
The Bengals drafted Collinsworth in the second round of the 1981 draft, and he became an immediate star. He made the Pro Bowl as a rookie, grabbing a career best 67 balls while gaining 1,009 yards and scoring eight times. Cincinnati reached Super Bowl XVI, where Collinsworth led all players with 107 yards off five receptions in their loss t the San Francisco 49ers.
He went back to the Pro Bowl in each of the next two seasons. He has 49 receptions for 700 yards in just nine games during the strike shortened 1982 season, then followed that up with a career best 1,130 yards off 66 receptions the next season. After a solid 1984 season, Collinsworth tried to jump to the United States Football League, but failed a physical with the Tampa Bay Bandits because of a bad ankle.
Returning to the Bengals he caught a career high 10 touchdown passes in 1986, year that saw him exceed 60 receptions for the fifth straight year and sixth time out of seven seasons. It would be the last time he accomplished this feat. After a 1987 season season shortened by a players strike, Collinsworth became a little used reserve in 1988. The Bengals reached Super Bowl , where his three catches for 40 yards were second on the team in the Bengals loss to the 49ers. He retired after the game, and has become an award-winning sports journalist on several television networks since.
At the time, his 417 receptions were the most in team history and are still the fourth most. His 6,698 yards rank fourth best, and his 36 scores, ranked second most at the time of his retirement, rank seventh best. The three Pro Bowls he had still rank the third most ever by a Bengals wide receiver.
Though his spot may be taken after Chad Ochocinco retires, it may not as well. At 6'5", Collinsworth was a tall player who used his height to out jump defenders for the ball. Yet he also had excellent speed to get down field as a deep threat, finishing with a 16.1 yards per catch average. Despite having two seasons basically stolen from him due to players strikes, Collinsworth was reliable, productive, spectacular, and consistent for Cincinnati. Many Bengals fans would tell you he is the best wide receiver the team ever had.
Eddie Brown, Carl Pickens, Chip Meyers, and Darnay Scott deserve mention.
Tight End : Bob Trumpy
Trumpy was drafted in the 12th round of the 1968 draft, the 301st player overall, by the expansion Bengals. Cincinnati was a new member of the American Football League at the time, and the AFL would fully merge with the NFL in two seasons. He impressed his Hall of Fame head coach Paul Brown with his work ethic, so Brown named him the starter as a rookie.
Cincinnati was rewarded with 37 receptions at a 17.3 yards per catch clip, which got him named to the Pro Bowl. Trumpy returned the next year by setting a still standing team record of a whopping 22.6 yards per catch average off another 37 receptions. He also scored a career high nine times and was named First Team All-Pro for his efforts.
In his first year in the post-merger NFL in 1970, Trumpy went back to the Pro Bowl. He went back for the final time in 1973 before seeing a decline in receiving opportunities. Though he caught seven touchdowns off of 21 catches in 1976, he retired at the end of the 1977 season. At the time of his retirement, almost ever Bengals receiving record was owned by him. His last touchdown came off a rare reverse flea flicker, where three other Bengals touched the ball before it reached him.
What makes Bob Trumpy's career special is not just the fact he helped an expansion team grow up fast with his help, as they had only three losing seasons in his ten years, but how he accumulated his excellent statistics. Cincinnati has eight different quarterbacks throwing him the ball during his career, yet he remained a viable threat regardless.
Besides still owning the team record for yards per catch in a season, the 35 touchdowns Trumpy scored are the most ever by any Bengal tight end in team history. He still ranks tenth is total receptions for a career, and his career average of 15.4 yards per catch show how good he was with the ball after getting it.
Not only is he the first Pro Bowl player in Bengals history, an honor he shares with halfback Paul Robinson and center Bob Johnson, he is the second Bengal ever to be named First Team All-Pro. He is also the only Bengals tight end to be named First Team All-Pro. Bob Trumpy is the greatest tight end the team has ever had.
Dan Ross, Rodney Holman, and Tony McGee deserve mention.
Offensive Tackle : Willie Anderson
Cincinnati used their first round draft selection, tenth overall, to tab Anderson. He was soon starting, and was a mainstay of their offensive line for 11 years. After missing two games in 1999, he would not miss a game nor start again until 2007.
Though he had long been considered an upper echelon left tackle for years, Anderson was finally recognized in 2003 with the first of four consecutive Pro Bowl appearances. He was named First Team All-Pro for the final three seasons he achieved this honor. After being hurt in 2007, forcing him to miss the first nine games of his career, Cincinnati released him after he refused to take a reduction in salary.
The Baltimore Ravens were having injury issues along their offensive line in 2008, so they signed Anderson. He started in 11 of the 14 games he played in, then retired for good having only missed 11 out of a possible 204 games over 13 seasons.
Cincinnati has only had two offensive tackles go to the Pro Bowl, Anderson and the legendary Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz. Munoz is considered the greatest left tackle in NFL history by many, but Willie Anderson was special in his own right and very underrated. There were several years he probably should have gone to the Pro Bowl, but future Hall of Famers Walter Jones and Jonathan Ogden were in his way of attaining the honor. So strong that he once reportedly lifted 675 lbs, Anderson was also very athletic and was solid in every aspect. After Munoz, he may be the best blocker in Bengals history.
Offensive Tackle : Joe Walter
Walter was drafted in the seventh round of the 1985 draft by Cincinnati. He began to earn a starters job in his second season, starting in eight games. He would then start in 156 of a possible 172 games over the next nine years. He missed 12 games because of injury.
After a 1997 season where he was only able to suit up for five games because of injuries, Walter retired. Though he never made the Pro Bowl, he was an excellent player. Three different halfbacks and a fullback ran for over 1,000 yards and two made the Pro Bowl over his career. He was also part of an explosive offense that reached a Super Bowl and had the quarterback named NFL MVP.
Many offensive linemen go through a career without being noticed much unless they make an error. Joe Walter was rock solid for over a decade for the Bengals, helping lead them to some of the biggest successes in franchise history. He may be the finest right tackle they ever had.
Ernie Wright, Kevin Sargent, and Levi Jones deserve mention.
Guard : Max Montoya
Montaya was a seventh round draft pick of the Bengals in 1979. Though he played just 11 games as a rookie, he quickly earned the starting job and started in nine games.He would remain a starter the rest of his time in Cincinnati.He missed ten starts and six games over the next 10 years because of injury, but there was perhaps no more underrated right guard in the NFL than him.
Though he was an elite guard in the NFL, it took until 1986 for him to be recognized with a Pro Bowl nod. He would repeat the honor in both 1987 and 1988 before leaving the Bengals for the Los Angeles Raiders in 1990. The Raiders made it to the AFC Championship that year, after defeating the Bengals in the Division Playoff Game, only to be destroyed by the Buffalo Bills 51-3.
After missing 13 games the next two years because of injuries, Montoya made his last Pro Bowl in 1994. He retired the next year after being a reserve all season, having started in 203 games in his 16 seasons. He paved the way for running backs like Eric Dickerson, Marcus Allen, Bo Jackson, James Brooks, Pete Johnson, Roger Craig, Napoleon Kaufman, Icky Woods, and several others. He also helped quarterbacks Ken Anderson and Boomer Esiason win NFL MVP as the team reached the Super Bowl twice.
Max Montoya is the only Bengals guard to ever get named to the Pro Bowl. He is probably the greatest guard in the franchises history.
Guard : Bruce Reimers
Reimers was an eighth round draft pick of the Bengals in 1985. He began to break into the starting lineup by his third season. Besides starting at left guard, Reimers was a versatile player who often filled in at the tackle positions as well. He was an integral member of an offensive line that saw the Bengals become the highest scoring team in 1988, where they appeared in Super Bowl XXIII.
Cincinnati stumbled to a three win season in 1991, and Reimers was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1992. He lasted two years there, starting in 26 of the 27 games he played, before retiring at the end of the 1993 season. Though he never made the Pro Bowl, Reimers was a valuable player who was versatile and technically sound. He is one of the better blockers in team history.
Dave Lapham, Howard Fest, Pat Matson, Eric Steinbach, Bobbie Williams, and Glenn Bujnoch deserve mention.
Center : Bob Johnson
The first player ever drafted by the Bengals, the second overall selection in 1968, Johnson started right away and excelled. He became the first Bengals blocker to make a Pro Bowl in his rookie year, and still remains the only Bengals center to have ever achieved this honor.
After starting and playing in ever Bengals game his first six years, Johnson missed four games in 1974 because of injury. He did manage to have a reception for three yards that year as well. He remained the leader of the unit until 1977, never missing a game.
In 1978, Cincinnati used their first round pick on center Blair Bush and inserted him into the lineup. Johnson did appear in 13 games, but the main job of the 32-year old was to mentor Bush. After five games played in 1979, he became the last original Bengal to retire. The Bengals soon retired his number, and it still remains the only number the franchise has ever awarded this honor to.
Though the team has had several excellent centers in their history, none are better than the first one who ever played the position for them. Bob Johnson may be the first Bengal inducted into their Ring of Honor if the team ever creates one.
Blair Bush, Dave Rimington, Rich Braham, Dan Brilz, and Bruce Kozerski deserve mention.
Kicker : Jim Breech
Breech was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the eighth round of the 1978 draft. He did not make the team and sat out the season. He tried out for the Oakland Raiders in 1979, and made the squad. After a year where he scored 95 points, the Raiders cut Breech to sign Chris Bahr, a kicker just released by the Bengals.
As the 1980 season went on, he got two offers to sign with the Bengals and Cleveland Browns. He chose the Bengals because the Browns job was temporary while Browns great Don Cockroft recovered from injury and the Bengals were having issues. The man they drafted to replace Bahr, Sandro Vitiello, did not pan out and Ian Sunter had missed nine field goals so far, despite making two game winning kicks against the defending champion Pittsburgh Steelers so far. Breech took over for the final four games of the season.
He held the job for 13 seasons and Cincinnati, and was well know to be automatic from 40-yards and in. Out of 216 career attempts from 40-yards in, he missed just 28 attempts. He scored more than 87 points every season with the Bengals 10 times, with a high of 120 points. In the Bengals Super Bowl season of 1988, Breech led the NFL with a career high 56 extra point conversions out of 59 attempts.
When he retired after the 1992 season, Breech had scored 1,151 points with the Bengals. It is the most in franchise history, and his team record of 186 consecutive games of scoring a point is the second longest in NFL history. He also holds the NFL record by making all nine of the field goals he attempted in overtime. He even attempted the only pass of his career, which went for 12 yards.
The Bengals have had quite a few excellent kickers in their short history. Shayne Graham, now kicking for the Patriots, is the only Bengals kicker to go to the Pro Bowl. Still, there are no kickers in franchise history better than Jim Breech.
Shayne Graham, Horst Muhlmann, the first of just four kickers ever to make a 50-yard field goal in three consecutive games, and Doug Pelfrey deserve mention.
Kick Returner : Tremain Mack
Mack was drafted in the fourth round of the 1997 draft by Cincinnati. He played just four games as a rookie because of injury, but he started at cornerback. They are the only starts of his career at the position, and he intercepted his only pass that was returned for 29 yards.
When he came back the next season, the Bengals asked him to return kickoffs. He responded by averaging 25.9 on 45 attempts while scoring once. He then followed that up by having his best season in 1999, where he became the only Bengal ever to be named to the Pro Bowl as a kick returner.
Averaging a career high 27.1 yards on a career best 51 returns, he also scored off a 99-yard jaunt. After returning 50 kicks the next season for 1,036 yards, he retired with several team records. He is the only Bengal to score twice off kick returns, his 27.1 return average is a single-season record by anyone with 17 or more attempts, and he still has the most kickoff return attempts and yards in team history.
In his short time, "T-Mack" proved himself to be maybe the best kickoff return specialist in team history.
Stanford Jennings, Tab Perry, Glenn Holt, Brandon Bennett, Eric Ball, Bernard Jackson, David Dunn, Eric Bieniemy, Willie Shelby, and Lemar Parrish deserve mention.
I had to put this Dennis the Menace comic strip in because in 8 years I might be a Mister Wilson when I retire from the Post Office. Alrighty then, let's get started with this weeks version of......
Congrats go out to Roy Halladay who threw the second no-hitter in post season history in his first start ever in the playoffs. It also is his second no-hitter this season.
Baseball doesn’t need more instant replay. What they do need is for the umpires to discuss amongst themselves any close calls. If there are no runners on base, the 2nd base umpire should be looking at first, third base umpire looking at 2nd, home plate umpire looking at third, and the 1st and 3rd base umpires should look at home. In the other major sports leagues the referees confer with each other during the game.
Just when I thought baseball doesn’t need more instant replay, 6 umpires got the call wrong on a catch made by Greg Golson to what would have been a game ending catch in the bottom of the 9th. Now what??? Are Baseball umpire’s that blind, or is the game too fast for them??
Bobby Cox had a Hall of Fame Career as a Manager with 2,504 - 2,001. He also put together a string of Division winners unparallel in baseball history. 11 straight NL East champions, 4 National League Champs and the 1995 World Series Champs. Congrats to a great career.
I am also surprised that over 52,000 fans showed up for the last two games of Bobby Cox’s regular season games. Sure they were in the hunt for the wild card (which they ended up winning), but I remember them having less than 40,000 for playoff games.
Glad to see that Philly fans had class by giving McNabb a standing ovation. It was even better that Donovan got the better of the Eagles.
Instead of showing the Boston-Philadelphia, Oklahoma-Chicago, or Indiana-Memphis game, NBA-TV, on Oct 5th, is replaying the Detroit-Miami game. It looks like its going to be a long NBA season if TBS/ESPN/NBA-TV show only Miami basketball.
According to reports by the Orlando Sentinel and wftv.com, an Orlando-area coach was suspended for allowing a homeless player to move in with him. Apparently your not allowed to have a player, regardless of the players economic status, reside with a coach of a High School team.
It seems that the Cincinnati Reds violated the State’s smoking ban law during the teams National League Central clinching celebration. The owner of the team, Bob Castellini, passed out cigars to all the players and coaches inside the clubhouse at the teams facility, The Great American Ballpark. People watching the celebration on TV called the statewide smoking ban complaint hotline. The complaints were sent to the health department. A pending investigation is underway.
Here Cincinnati Bengals Wide Receiver Chad Ochocinco was trying to help the Feed The Children charity by putting the phone number of the charity on his new cereal called OchocinO’s so people can make donations. Only one problem. Someone put the wrong area code on the box. Instead of calling the charity the number was to a sex hot-line.
Congrats to Dusty Baker for deserving a 2 year contract extension.
Josh Scobee 59 yard field goal put life back into Jack Del Rio’s coaching status. The buzz going around Jacksonville was, if he lost against the Colt’s he was gone. I’m thinking Josh just pro-longed the agony of Jacksonville fans who want to see Del Rio gone.