published Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

5-at-10: SEC asked and answered, NFL power poll and Eds

Hey gang, remember the mailbag. We're getting close to that time of year, and we're making our list and checking it twice.

From the "Talks too much" studios, the beginning of the end is really the end of the beginning — or it could be the middle of the middle. Discuss.

  • photo
    Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron looks for an open receiver behind his blockers as Mississippi State defensive lineman P.J. Jones during their game in Starkville, Miss., in this file photo.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

1. Alabama

How dominant has Alabama's defense been during its championship run of three national titles in the last four years? Great question, and glad you asked: Alabama has allowed 81 touchdowns since the beginning of the 2009 season. LSU is second in the SEC over that time frame, allowing 120 TDs. Alabama leads the country, allowing just 10.2 points per game — and that number is inflated by Johnny Football doing Johnny Football things in Alabama's 49-42 win over Texas A&M.

Saturday: vs. UTC, 2 (Pay-per view)

2. Auburn

Where does Nick Marshall's miraculous, 73-yard, tipped TD pass to Ricardo Louis rank in Auburn history? It's up there for sure, considering the stakes — the win kept alive Auburn's incredible run and set up a winner-take-all Iron Bowl — and the drama. If we had to name a Rushmore of the top four Auburn pass plays, we'd go, in no particular order, with Marshall to Louis, Cam Newton to Terrell Zachery early in the third quarter of the 2010 Iron Bowl, Reggie Slack to Alexander Wright for a long TD early in the 1989 Iron Bowl and Patrick Nix to Frank Sanders for the game-winner in the Swamp in 1994.

Saturday: Off

3. Missouri

Are these Tigers ready to seal the deal? We believe so, considering the following: a) Missouri gets starting quarterback James Franklin back this week; b) the name Missouri in the BCS chase may still be a little surprising, but the Tigers' resume is stellar. Franklin is schedule to return to the lineup this week, and before getting hurt late in the Tigers' win over Georgia, Franklin was well on his way to SEC Player of the Year honors. With Franklin at QB, Missouri was in the top 12 in the country in scoring (45.7 points per game) and total offense (515 yards per game) and converted more than 51 percent of its third downs. And if not for a fourth-quarter debacle against South Carolina that turned a 17-0 lead into a 27-24 double-overtime loss, Missouri's accomplishments would compare with anyone's.

Saturday: vs. Ole Miss, 7:45 (ESPN)

4. Texas A&M

Are you ready for your Heisman moment Mr. Johnny Manziel? Johnny Football has had every bit as good a season this year as last. His running numbers are down, but his passing numbers are through the roof — he's completing 73 perecnt of his passes for 3,313 yards and 31 TDs. He has two nationally televised chances to impress the voters, starting this week at LSU and next week at Missouri. He should be the front-runner, along with FSU freshman Jameis Winston, considering he has carried a wretched defense to an 8-2 mark, and those two losses are by a combined 11 points to Alabama and Auburn, which are a combined 20-1 this season. The distractions of the last 12 months than made him Johnny Sideshow likely will hurt him in some voter's eyes, but it shouldn't. Dude has been better this year than last when he won the trophy and became Johnny Football.

Saturday: at LSU, 3:30 (CBS)

5. South Carolina

Will South Carolina give Connor Shaw a nice send off? Absolutely. In the SEC year of the quarterback, the most underrated will set a nice and meaningful record when the Gamecocks crush Coastal on Saturday. Shaw will set the record for most wins as a South Carolina starting quarter. He recorded his 24th last week against Florida to tie Todd Ellis, and Shaw will take the top spot this week. Depending on how Missouri fares the next two weeks, Shaw could have three more chances after this week to add to that number, too. Considering USC has Clemson Nov. 30 and USC has already become bowl eligible, a Missouri loss puts Shaw and USC in the SEC title game as well.

Saturday: vs. Coastal Carolina, 1 (Pay-per view)

6. Ole Miss

Saturday: vs. Missouri, 7:45 (ESPN)

7. LSU

How motivated will the Tigers be? LSU has an uncharacteristic three losses with two games still play. LSU is fifth in the SEC West. That single statement may define how tough the SEC West is. LSU — with an NFL QB, two NFL wide receivers the league's best healthy defensive tackle and a slew of athletic freaks — is the fifth best team in its division. Wow. A win against the A&M Manziels would help — and it would greatly elevate the Tigers' bowl profile, too.

Saturday: vs. Texas A&M, 3:30 (CBS)

8. Vandy

Did you know that in historical context, the single best player in SEC history at his position currently plays for Vanderbilt? Yes, meet Jordan Matthews, the VU wide receiver who has set the league record for receiving yards (3,358) and likely will set the league record for catches — he needs but four — sometime Saturday night in Knoxville. And Matthews did this with a trio of future entrepreneurs — Jordan Rodgers, Austyn Carta-Samuels and Patton Robinette sounds more like a lawyer firm than a QB lineage — throwing him the ball the last two years.

Saturday: at Tennessee, 7 (ESPN2)

9. Georgia

What could possibly happen next in this Bulldogs season of bad dreams? After the Immaculate Deflection that lifted Auburn to a miracle win over Georgia last Saturday, the Bulldogs are staring at a possible bowl trip to Nashville. Or worse. And who in their right mind would have thought that was possible at the end of September when the Bulldogs had just outlasted LSU in a thriller? A large part of the season spoiling can be attributed to injuries, but the defense has been bad front to back this year. Maybe the only was this season could get worse is when arriving in Birmingham for the BBVC Bowl, Mark Richt announces defensive coordinator Todd Grantham's getting an extension. No way that happens. Heck the odds on the Immaculate Deflection were higher.

Saturday: vs. Kentucky, 7 (ESPNU)

10. Florida

Does Florida have anything left in the tank? It's hard to think so after pushing all its chips in at South Carolina and still coming up short. The Gators' offense is so bad right now that the only way it scored in Columbia was running a Wildcat package. In fact, if Florida and Arkansas met on a neutral field this week, the over/under would be 7.5.

Saturday: vs. Georgia Southern, 2 (Pay-per view)

11. Tennessee

Is Tennessee ready for the win-or-go-home-for-Christmas stakes that are Saturday night's date with Vandy? You'd have to believe so, right? OK, we're going to buy in, and in some ways this may be the most telling game in Butch Jones' first year. Think about it this way: This is one of the most evenly matched games talent-wise. This is the game that has tangible implications — win and stay alive for the postseason, lose and, well, buh-bye. This is the game we will be able to see how much the experienced Vols have bought into the Brick-by-Brick mantra. Interesting indeed.

Saturday: vs. Vandy, 7 (ESPN2)

12. Mississippi State

Other than families, girl friends and those being interrogated at GitMo, who is going to watch the Dogs and Hogs on Saturday? Wow. It would have been fun for the SEC Network to replace its normal, professional broadcasters — they are getting paid, so by definition they are professionals, so you're welcome Andre Ware — with some true stand-up comedians and let them have their way with the error-filled circus that will be Dogs and Hogs. Dogs and Hogs... that's the sorority the Tri-Lambs partnered with in "Revenge of the Nerds" right?

Saturday: at Arkansas, noon (WDSI)

13. Kentucky

Is there a better time to get a swing at Georgia than right now? Not really, considering the emotional stomach punch that was the loss to Auburn. Still, the Wildcats are going to have to come up with a plan for the Gurley-Murray monster that is as good as any quarterback-running back combo in college football. That's the bad news. The good news is Todd Grantham is prominently involved.

Saturday: at Georgia, 7 (ESPNU)

14. Arkansas

Do you believe in karma? The Bielemas do. After Bret Bielema's wife Jen tweeted 'KARMA' following Wisconsin's head-scratching loss to Arizona State that included a questionable call and even worse clock management, Bret's team is bagel-and-7 and 0-6 in the SEC. The league losses have come by an average of more than 26 points. Ouch-standing.

Saturday: vs. Mississippi State, noon (WDSI)


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    Carolina Panthers' Cam Newton (1) scrambles for a gain as Atlanta Falcons' Vance Walker (99) chases during the first half of an NFL game in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

NFL Power Poll

That was a fun Monday night football game right up until the end.

The "uncatchable pass" is extremely prejudicial in cases such as Monday night when Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly hugged Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski on an underthrown pass that was intercepted by Robert Lester on the final play of Carolina's 24-20 win. In that case, the ball was uncatchable mainly because the defensive player was tackling the receiver. The "uncatchable" clause really should be used only when a pass is overthrown or obviously uncatchable.

The last-play theatrics marred what was otherwise an excellent game. It also was the Panthers' sixth consecutive win and forces us to evaluate them with the same critical eye we reserve for the league's upper crust, because in truth these Panthers are among the best in today's NFL. Defensively, they are top-three in the league in most every category. Offensively, they have pieces.

They also have Cam Newton, who outplayed Tom Brady in the Monday win, throwing three TDs and no picks, completing 68 percent of his throws and running for a game-high 62 yards.

We all know the NFL is a quarterback-driven league. That is going to change in the years to come, at least in part. The elite QBs will continue to demand -- and deserve -- roughly 15 percent of a team's salary cap. The rest of the teams will have to decide if their QBs deserve franchise money or if they are just the best options available at the time.

Teams such as the Tennessee Titans (Jake Locker) and the Bears (Jay Cutler) and the Steelers (Ben Roethlisberger) are going to be forced to make decisions to pay their starting QBs elite dollars. Can they afford to do it? Can they afford not to? This will change the definition of "elite" to the point that the top five to seven QBs in the league are going to have to be able to win games regardless of the pieces around them. The elite quarterbacks are going to command big dollars, and the sacrifices of the roster must be compensated for by the quarterback's talents. That's the price of their high asking price.

Teams without elite QBs should have better parts because they have more to spend. That means spending elite dollars on merely a good or serviceable quarterback -- or missing on a first-round QB pick -- can cripple franchises for years.

That also means teams will have the best chance to be complete, well-rounded teams if they can land a young QB and build around him before he is up for his first renegogiation after five years.

That's where the Panthers are now, whether you believe Cam Newton is going to be one of those elite guys who can win with whoever is around him.

Power poll

1) Denver: The Broncos' win over the Chiefs on Sunday gave them a temporary leg up. To stay atop the heap, the Denver Peytons will have to win against New England and then make the return trip to Kansas City -- a crucial swing for Denver, to be sure, and two more weeks of Manning excellence will mean the AFC playoffs go through Denver for all intents and purposes.

2) Seattle: The Seahawks are rolling, and hey, look, they just got Percy Harvin healthy. Seattle is going to be a tough out.

3) Kansas City: The Chiefs acquitted themselves fine on the big stage in Denver. Still, this bunch has to wonder if the offense can deliver the big drive in the big spot that every elite team is asked to do in the playoffs.

4) New Orleans: The Saints are well-equipped for the big moment, with one of the game's elite quarterbacks in Drew Brees and arguably the game's best offensive coach in Sean Payton. If you wanted your son to be good at an offensive part of football, wouldn't you consider some variation of Peyton/Payton since the game's best current QB (Manning) and the game's best current offensive coach (Sean) and one of the game's all-time best running backs (Walter) all have some Payton/Peyton in their name?

5) Carolina: Defensively, the Panthers have the best front seven in football. And as Newton grows and matures, this team's Super Bowl window only expands.

Bottom five

28) Houston: Injuries have capsized the Texans. Good night.

29) Minnesota: This may be an urban myth, but somewhere in the NFL rulebook it says that starting three different quarterbacks in the same season is a sure-fire plan to get to pick high enough in the next draft that you may have a different QB option the following year.

30) Tampa Bay: Maybe Josh Freeman was the problem after all, huh? The Bucs have won two in a row -- break up the Bucs.

31) Atlanta: Wow. The only drama left for the Falcons is whether they go after an offensive or defensive lineman with their top-three overall pick. Here's saying if Jadeveon Clowney is on the board you sprint to the podium to get him.

32) Jacksonville: How do you feel if you're Titans coach Mike Munchack and you got outcoached and out-prepared by the Jaguars staff? Job-secure would not be our first guess.


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    In a photo provided by the University of Southern California, date not known, Ed Orgeron poses for a photo. USC fired Lane Kiffin as football coach early Sunday morning, Sept. 29, 2013, ending the coach's tumultuous tenure a few hours after the Trojans lost 62-41 at Arizona State.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Coach O my goodness

Ed Orgeron is now campaigning for the USC job. We think Ed McMahon wants it too. And Mr. Ed. And Eddie Monster, and Eddie Haskel.

Let's rank the Eds and where they may fit on USC AD Pat Haden's wish list — and remember the only confirmed interview to this point is former USC All-American and former NFL head coach and current Denver defensive coordinator and interim head coach Jack Del Rio (nice resume Jack):

1. Ed O'Neill — Al Bundy did score four TDs in a game for Polk High back in the day.

2. Eddie Robinson — Yes, he's dead, but what a list of accomplishments

3. Ed Harris — Dude showed real coaching chops as the head coach in "Radio"

4. Ed Orgeron — USC is on a nice run, no doubt. Tell 'em bout it JoJo. (Please remember that Coach O was 10-25 in his previous head coaching run at Ole Miss, and yes, that's even worse than Derek Dooley's 17-20 mark before getting the UT gig.)

These are only the Ed rankings, so if Haden is set and determined to hire an Ed, Coach O may have a shot. On a serious note, if/when Coach O does not get the USC job, he will be a highly coveted defensive line coach because Coach O recruits better than just about anyone any where.


This and that

— Former Braves ace Tim Hudson agreed to a deal with the San Francisco Giants. It will be tough seeing Hudson pitch for the enemy, but so it goes. He got a two-year deal worth $23 million. Is Hudson a Hall of Famer? He's 205-111 with a career 3.44 ERA. He's 38 and if he adds 30 more wins the next two years, does that change your answer?

— Dewey Arnette, a Florida golf pro, is the engineer behind the "Tebow to Jacksonville" campaign. We get it, there are a lot of folks in Florida that love Tim Tebow. He's a good dude. You know what, Ashton Kutcher has like 8 million Twitter followers and Justin Timberlake is a superstar who is selling out stadiums left and right — that doesn't mean either is ready to be an NFL QB. (That said, if he can play either line, the Falcons could use him stat.)

— Urban Meyer thinks the BCS is flawed. Hmmmm, do you think he thinks racism is bad too? Of course it's bad Urban. It's been bad from day one. Of course, Urban didn't think the system was all that flawed in 2008 when his one-loss Gators and the one-loss Oklahoma Sooners played for the title with unbeaten Utah and unbeaten Boise State being dismissed. So let's get this straight, it's flawed when you're on the outside looking in, but it's OK when you are included. Is that about right? OK, thanks.


Today's question

There's a slew to discuss.

Want to discuss where Cam ranks in the QB new world order, feel free.

Want to dish on 'selfie' beating twerk as the word of the year according to the educated folks at Oxford, fire away.

If you were Pat Haden, who is atop your coaching list?

Or feel free to free flow. Discuss.

about Jay Greeson...

Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
chas9 said...

Yes, Mister Matthews is a man. Will VU be favored at Tennessee?

UK has no shot at Gawga, but they do vs. UT.

Saturday's great game reminds me of 1996 when Georgia scored to tie Auburn on the final play of regulation (Mike Bobo to Corey Allen) and then won it in four extra periods, 56-49. It was the first overtime game in the SEC.

What if Orgeron beats Colorado and UCLA and finishes 9-3? That won't make it easy on Hayden. Yesterday we bemoaned the fact that UT's PG had only one assist. Barton doubled that number against The Citadel. If he keeps on doubling his assists every game, he'll have 1,073,741,824 in his final game.

Some basketball coaches can be verbose. Why do they speak of scoring the ball? How is that different from just scoring?

November 19, 2013 at 10:10 a.m.
MocTastic said...

Huddy in the HOF? Good question. My first response is if you have to ask the question and debate it he does not deserve it. Those who deserve induction are without question. However, as well all know the minimum qualifications have slowly gone downhill over the years where in the past the HOF was for the great, then they started letting in the very good, now it seems many of the new entrants fall into just the good crowd. Also, recently there seems to be more and more of the entrants getting in on the "lifetime achievement award" category. They were never truely great, but were a good baseball player for a very long time, see Phil Neikro and Don Sutton for this category.

Additionally, there have been milestones attached to getting inducted, such as 500 homeruns and 300 wins. With the dawning of the steroid era the 500 homeruns became a joke. However, with the increased use of the bullpens the 300 wins is becoming more elusive as a career statistic. Huddy has 205 and will certainly add another 30 or so to that total probably. His career ERA is 3.44, which is good, but no where near "great". I ask, in Huddy's career how many years would you put him as amongst the best 10 pitchers in baseball that season? Maybe one or two? Does he qualify as being great, a great of the game? I say no. He was a good quality serviceable pitcher who has had a good career. Lets leave the HOF to those who are truely the best among the best.

November 19, 2013 at 10:21 a.m.
Stewwie said...

[Who else would say no immediately and consider trading QBs with the Panthers to get Cam Newton? No one.]

Only 5 teams would say no to trading for Cam? Seriously? Cam is a good QB, but he is far from elite status. The Panthers are winning games this year primarily from the play of the D, not Cam.

Teams who would trade for Cam right now:

Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Browns, Texans, Jags, Titans, Raiders, Vikings, Bucs, and Cards.

Everyone else has someone just as good or better at QB.

If Gronk had made any kind of attempt to come back to the ball, they wouldn't have picked up the flag. There may have been miscommunication on the play. Brady should have thrown it to the back of the end zone where Gronk was and there would have been a TD (or definite interference).

November 19, 2013 at 10:33 a.m.
chattjammer said...

Jay, ok, here to rile u up..or your "O" was a satchel wide open & still couldn't deliver at The Miss; he would only create a headache for Haden IF he won out; don't see him beating UCLA this yr so that will end the discussion; maybe his effort on the left coast could get him back to The Miss tho (LOL); Haden should go after Jeff Fisher; Fisher's a far better resume, USC boy, & the Rams want to go to LA anyways, so he'd just be ahead of the curve; Fisher can build & win, Del Rio may have the beach look but he didn't develop players at Jax & Fisher did at TN & now St.L;

Your NFL power poll seems right; until u get to the playoffs..lots of teams win all season but don't show up when they actually have to play a good team 2 weeks in a row; NFL parity schedules are why some teams win every once in a while & then get their a-- handed to them when they start playing a better schedule (see ATL); which is why some teams are amazing each yr becuz they do win a lot, and play a tough schedule each yr; All that to say: bye bye Denver when the games come that matter..Peyton Manning doesn't win in under 45 degree weather, even with gloves on...

Totally agree that UT-Candy U game is the barometer for these 'bricks'; Saw some (stupid) pundits writing about Jones & UT & how they are no better than previous versions of DD/LK/Fulmer's last 2 yrs; that they all seem to be shocked the record is 4-6 thus making them no better; hello? UT is right where a football fan with a brain would've had them; Candy U beat UF & UGA who were walking MASH units, so I think UT wins, then slobbers on the KY Jelly, gets the bowl, 15 extra practies and a game vs. Marshall or E. Caro..does it really matter?

On the Pats-Panthers finish..that was a homer flag picked up; game at NE=penalty, ball at 2 & one more play. Period. U can't make an attempt to come back to the ball when u are driven out of bounds like a mack truck..Cam Newton did well in this game, minus all starting DB's for NE & part of their line; to me the most entertaining play was the 75 yd run to get a 14 yd gain & 1st down; but he's not nearly on a Mt Rushmore of anything outside the borders of Carolina (or outside the city limits of Auburn, AL) yet over this game; remember the Panther DEFENSE has them largely where they are right now, and for the record, I HATE New England (mainly becuz of Tom Brady);

Lastly, enjoyed your comments about Urban Meyer! Spot on! Next to narcissist in Websters is a pic of Meyer; He's a jerk thug, was at UF and now in Columbus. BTW, most of the people in Ohio are that way too! Smug, jerks, attitudal & really should have a pumpkin pie thrown at them, just because....

November 19, 2013 at 11:20 a.m.
chas9 said...

I'm with you, Stew. Methinks Jay has a man crush on his AU buddy.

November 19, 2013 at 11:23 a.m.
chas9 said...

Remember Jack Taylor, the Grinnell College guard who scored 109 points in a 173-123 win? He now owns three of the top five scoring performances in the history of Division III basketball. That list looks like this: • 138: Jack Taylor (2012-13) • 109: Jack Taylor (2013-14) • 89: Griffin Lentsch (2012-13) • 77: Jeff Clement (1997-98) • 71: Jack Taylor (2013-14) And he's now averaging 90.0 points per game.

The UT-Citadel game was technically part of the Battle 4 Atlantis, though the result didn't impact who each team would face later in the tournament. Tennessee meets UTEP on Nov. 28 in Paradise Island, Bahamas. The Citadel plays Nov. 29 at Towson in its next Battle 4 Atlantis game. Screwy format exploiting loopholes in the rules to squeeze in more games and more $.

November 19, 2013 at 1:06 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

And here I thought they got rid of the replacement refs. Worst non-call I've ever seen.

Hudson not a HoFer. It will take some doing for him to get that and I don't think a guy his age coming from a broken wheel is up to that.

The BCS is flawed, because Urban Meyer said it was. Well, that settles that, doesn't it?

Other great Eds ... Ed Podolak of the Kansas City Chiefs. Ed from Ohio, guitarist for Firehose and later for Whiskeytown, IIRC.

November 19, 2013 at 1:07 p.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Nope, the Vols are a 3-point pick, which is the general view of being at home, so in Vegas' eyes these are very evenly matched opponents.

And if Coach O runs the table — and he's swaying recruits and even poached a 4-star guard from Alabama this morning — then he's going to put Haden in an awkward position. Hiring Coach O is a mistake, no matter the circumstances. It's like falling in love with a fellow hostage, sure it seems like a good idea at the time, but when the emotion and the circumstance fade and the daily routine starts and you are waking up next to Coach O every morning, well, that's a scary prospect.

And so what if we have a man-crush on Cam — does not mean he's any less talented.

MT —

We have the exact same view on Hall of Famers — if you have to ask the answer's no.

But Hudson has crafted a Hall of Great career, and if he could find a lightning in a bottle 2-to-3 year run he could get very close.

Stewwie —

We may be over-selling Cam, but you're under-selling.

Here's your list: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Browns, Texans, Jags, Titans, Raiders, Vikings, Bucs, and Cards.

In addition to those, here are the teams we believe the Panthers would laugh at if they called and said, "Hey, wanna trade QBs": Steelers, Bengals, Chargers, Bears, Redskins, Seahawks, 49ers, Rams, Eagles."

So that's 20. Take the other five — Rodgers, Brees, Peyton, Brady and Luck off the table, that leaves these other six QBs:

Romo, Matty Ice, Flacco, Andy Dalton, Eli and Matt Stafford.

In today's NFL, if the re-draft happened and those six names were available along with Cam Newton, here's saying Newton is picked over all of them, with the possible exception being Eli.

That's our view.

Jammer —

Welcome to the party, and remember you are not paid by the word.

Yes, Urban has a high opinion of himself (that said, we know folks who think we have a high opinion of ourself... shhhh don't tell anyone.)

And we think Fisher could be a fine choice... but can he recruit. Interesting times.

And you sound-off against the fine folks from the great state of Ohio made us think of the Austin Powers line when Nigel Powers says, "There are only two things I can't stand in this world. People who are intolerant of other people's cultures... and the Dutch."

Coin flips — Chargers (Rivers), Giants (E. Manning), Cowboys (Romo), Redskins (RGIII), Seahawks (Wilson)

November 19, 2013 at 1:09 p.m.
chas9 said...

Brings to mind the great Kinston Trio riff: "The French hate the Germans. The Germans hate the Poles. Italians hate Yugoslavs. South Africans hate the Dutch and I don't like anybody very much!" Sing it, Jay.

And take Eli off the list at least.

November 19, 2013 at 1:24 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Yes, Eli is above Cam. We're good with that. Eli is just not one of those upper circle guys.

Disregard that last paragraph of the preview post. That was note-making.

If we ranked the top five Manning, Brady, Brees, Rodgers and Luck in whatever order.

And said Eli was likely No. 6 and then the next group was Romo, Matty Ice, Flacco, Andy Dalton, Matt Stafford and Cam Newton, we'd take Cam first in that group every time. Especially factoring in age and contract, considering Romo, Matty Ice, Flacco and Stafford have recently overwhelmed their franchises' salary cap. You get Cam the rest of this year and the next two on his initial deal.

November 19, 2013 at 1:40 p.m.
Stewwie said...

If money/salaries/contracts are part of the equation, that might be a different BID-ness conversation about trading QBs. But in regard to which QBs are better, I would keep all 6 of those you listed instead of trading them for Cam. Andy Dalton would be first off of the list if I started to change my mind though.

Bottom line, it's clear Cam is not a top-5 QB in the league right now. As for top 10, I would make the case that he's not there right now though I wouldn't rule it out for the future if he continues to improve and develop.

Brady on the final play:

"Gronkowski) was kind of weaving in and out of there. I didn't really want to throw it over his head and out of bounds, so I was a little indecisive," he said. "It wasn't a great throw. No excuses. Should have been a better throw."

November 19, 2013 at 2:08 p.m.
GratefulDawg said...

9er wrote: "UK has no shot at Gawga..." Against a Grantham coached defense, everybody has a shot. Since the 2010 season, Grantham's debut at Georgia, Georgia and Kentucky have surrendered thirty or more points in the same number of games. Good times. If the Kentucky coaching staff has observed our defense this season, the scout team should have at least one defensive back wandering aimlessly like a lost child at Six Flags on every play.

November 19, 2013 at 3:03 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Stewwie —

Wonder why the national media keeps telling us Andy Dalton is going to be the next great quarterback? Heck, if we could throw it to AJ Green every other snap, we'd like our chances.

We don not think Cam is a top 5 guy, and if we said that, then we mis-typed.

We do think Cam is a modern version of a franchise guy — a guy that can win games regardless of the pieces around him. He's not there yet, but we feel he's close.

Put another way, who would you rather have to build your franchise around Cam or Flacco? That's what we spent entirely too many words trying to say. Man, we do talk too much.

GD —

If Herschel was the great difference maker, is Grantham the great equalizer? And that DB roaming all over the field is a a hybrid rover — or under Grantham's extra special care it's more of a Grover.

November 19, 2013 at 3:14 p.m.
Stewwie said...

[We don not think Cam is a top 5 guy, and if we said that, then we mis-typed.]

You didn't exactly say that, but you implied that he is close by saying that he is elite and that only 5 teams would say no to a trade for him. I was merely asserting (or rather re-affirming) that there's no debate that he's outside of the top 5, but I also think he's outside of the top 10 (for now anyway).

[Put another way, who would you rather have to build your franchise around Cam or Flacco?]

My personal preference is to build around the bona fide pocket passer. The dual-threat QB seems to rarely work out long-term in the NFL.

November 19, 2013 at 3:49 p.m.
GratefulDawg said...

Jay, you could call Grantham the great equalizer. He has been called many things by my Bulldog brethren, but most of those descriptive terms would not fit the family friendly format of the 5-at-10.

I believe Grantham needs to be fired at the end of the season. That puts me in the same boat with ninety-eight percent of the rest of the fan base. There are several potential replacements being discussed hypothetically amongst Dawgs fans everywhere. One name that keeps popping up that we need to scratch from the list entirely is Brian Van Gorder. That ship has sailed. If BVG took the job and the defense started to show improvement, he would likely quit in the middle of his first season back to take a job with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. I don't claim to know who the ideal hire would be, but I know Van Gorder is not the answer.

November 19, 2013 at 3:52 p.m.
jimmydurant said...

Today for the first time I read your article and in one shot I liked your article and the way you write.

July 22, 2014 at 8:09 a.m.
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