Posted on: October 7, 2009 10:34 pm

NFL Week 4 Observations

Just when you thought things couldn't get any worse for the Rams... Kyle Boller reminds us that he's, well...Kyle Boller. He barely topped 100 yards passing on the day, threw zero touchdowns and one interception. This is while playing from behind the whole game. Ouch.

Speaking of bad teams... The Toilet Bowl between Tampa Bay and Washington sure lived up to the hype. How does Tampa pick off Jason Campbell 3 times, force a fumble and only put up 13 points? They're making a strong case for the worst team in the league right now.

Willis McGahee is this year's DeAngelo Williams. McGahee was drafted relatively late in drafts this year, a lot like Williams was last year. They're both in a major time share. The main difference is that, well...McGahee is doing better than Williams did last year. After only four games, McGahee already has seven touchdowns. I don't expect him to keep this up, but right now he's on track to score 28 touchdowns on the year...or eight more than league leading DeAngelo Williams last year.

Matt Cassel was the worst free agent pickup of the off season. Remember that glimmer of hope the Chiefs had in the preseason because of Cassel's arrival and a new head coach? Hard to believe there was ever any hope to begin with, at this point. Cassel was almost held to under 100 yards passing for the second straight week. Don't be surprised to see Brodie Croyle in the starting lineup in the near future. It just goes to show how important a quarterback's system and supporting cast is to his production.

The Tennessee Titans season is officially over. Every week so far this year, I gave the Titans the benefit of the doubt and picked them to win. I thought there was no way Jeff Fischer would let this team slip to 0-4 against the Jaguars. Well, I was wrong. Even if they only lose one more game the whole rest of the season, they wouldn't be a lock to make the playoffs (see Patriots last year). Only 2% of NFL teams that start out 0-4 have ever made the playoffs in the history of the NFL. Did Albert Haynesworth really mean THAT much to this team?

The Indianapolis Colts have done well...against bad teams. Before everyone starts picking the Colts to win the Super Bowl this year, remember that none of the teams they've played against so far this year have a winning record. In fact, the best team they've played so far is the 2-2 Jacksonville Jaguars that they almost lost to. Their next three weeks they play the Titans, have a bye, then play the Rams. In other words...we won't get a good idea of how good this team really is until November 1st when they play the 49ers.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Oakland Raiders. Note to anybody looking to start an expansion team...stay away from pirate names.

Brandon Marshall is your typical wide receiver diva. Did you see him run up and hug Josh McDaniels after the game? What an amazing turn around for their relationship as it seems like only a month ago he was suspended by the team for his behavior. Could it be because the team is off to a 4-0 start? Naw...

Mark Sanchez actually is a rookie quarterback! The prodigy quarterback finally showed that he's a rookie and can make rookie mistakes. In one of the biggest games this week, he threw for only 138 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions...including one for a 99 yard return for a touchdown. Don't worry, Mark...facing the Dolphins 24th ranked pass defense this week should help get you back on track.

Drew Brees is not going to break Dan Marino's yardage record this year... and that's a good thing for the Saints. If he put up that many yards it would only show how one dimensional this team is. The last two games, the Saints haven't relied on Brees at all to score points. He's been more of a distraction to help their run game than anything else. If their running game keeps up and their defense keeps playing like it is, this will be a very tough team to beat.

Darrelle Revis is the second coming of Deion Sanders. This guy is the definition of a shut down corner. Through four weeks he's been matched up against Andre Johnson, Randy Moss, Justin Gage, and Marques Colston. The four of them COMBINED have put up 129 yards and no touchdowns. Mohamed Massaquoi put up 148 yards by himself this week! It's getting to the point where if ANYONE scores a touchdown on him this year, I'll be surprised.

Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch are now worthless fantasy players. Instead of giving one of these two players the majority of the carries, the Bills decided to split it right now the middle. Fred Jackson ended the game with 9 carries while Marshawn Lynch received 8. Mix that in with their terrible offensive line and inability to get a passing game going and it's not looking good for either one of these backs.

Tony Romo is more like Tony Oh-No without Owens. After a hot start in week one, Romo has been awful. He's averaged only 212 yards in the past three games and has thrown four interceptions to only one touchdown. Don't Cowboy fans miss the good old days when Romo was only bad in big games?

The Steelers play more like the Penguins... champions for three periods. The Steelers keep forgetting that there's four quarters in a football game. If they could only finish games like they start them, they'd be one of the top teams in the league right now. In week two against the Bears, the Steelers held a 7 point lead in the 4th quarter. They ended up losing that game 17-14. In week three against the Bengals, they were winning 20-9 at the start of the 4th quarter. They ended up losing that game 23-20. Now this week against the Chargers, they held an incredible 28 point lead towards the end of the 3rd quarter. They then allowed San Diego to go on a 28-7 run which put the game at 35-28. Although the Steelers pulled it out with a 38-28 victory, they can't hope for 28 point leads going into the 4th quarter every game just to have a chance anymore. This is a team that desperately misses Troy Polamalu.

Brett Favre knows the Green Bay Packers better than they know him. Every since Favre joined the Vikings, Packer fans have been talking about how well they'll do against the Vikings because of how well they know Brett Favre. At the same time, Vikings fans were talking about how well their offense was going to do because of how well Favre knew the Packers. We can't have both...so which side was right? Well, Favre went out and threw for 271 yards, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. He was also never sacked throughout the entire game. I guess that answers that question.

Braylon Edwards is the luckiest man in football. Anyone getting out of Cleveland is a lucky person, but Edwards hit the jackpot when he got sent to the Jets. Although he's had trouble hanging onto the ball and has had some off the field issues, you can't deny his talent and potential. If Mark Sanchez can develop a good rapport with Edwards by the playoffs, the Jets will represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.

That's all for this week. Check back for more observations every Wednesday.
Posted on: October 4, 2009 1:10 am

My Mathematically Correct Power Rankings

These are a list of power rankings I came up with that have absolutely no opinion involved. Instead, I used a mathematical equation to determine them. Here's how it works...

Offensive points + total yards + passing yards + rushing yards + points allowed + rushing yards allowed + passing yards allowed + total yards allowed. Divide this total by 8. I would then look at their records and give that a rank as well. Teams that are 3-0 received a rank of 1, 2-1 a rank of 2, 1-2 a rank of 3, and 0-3 a rank of 4. I took the sum of the first equation and added the win/loss rank to their total. The team with the lowest score is the "best" team.

For example, the Ravens are the number one ranked team. Here is their equation:

Baltimore: 2+2+5+5+11+7+17+1 = 50 / 8 = 6.25 + 1 = 7.25

The Ravens are ranked 2nd in the league in offensive points, 2nd in overall yards, 5th in passing yards, 5th in rushing yards, etc.

Here's how the they all turned out:

1. Baltimore: 7.25

2. Denver: 7.625

3. New York Giants: 8.25

4. New Orleans: 8.75

5. New England: 10.875

6. Indianapolis: 11.75

7. Philadelphia: 11.75

8. New York Jets: 12.125

9. Minnesota: 12.375

10. Dallas: 15.75

11. Pittsburgh: 16.5

12. Seattle: 16.5

13. San Diego: 16.625

14. Chicago: 18

15. San Francisco: 18.625

16. Cincinnati: 18.75

17. Green Bay: 19.125

18. Washington: 19.25

19. Tennessee: 20

20. Arizona: 21.875

21. Atlanta: 22.125

22. Jacksonville: 22.125

23. Miami: 22.25

24. Buffalo: 23

25. Houston: 25

26. Detroit: 26.5

27. Oakland: 27.125

28. Carolina: 27.25

29. Kansas City: 27.875

30. Tampa Bay: 30

31. St. Louis: 30.125

32. Cleveland: 32.875

Posted on: September 30, 2009 11:53 pm

NFL Week 3 Observations

A few observations from week three of the NFL season.


Brett Favre still has plenty of magic left. Anyone who questioned why the Vikings brought Favre back should now have their answer. If Sage Rosenfels or Tarvaris Jackson were leading that final drive, do you really think the Vikings would have come out on top? While he topped 300 yards on the day, his overall stat line wasn't extremely impressive based off his 46 passing attempts. The stat lines aren't why he's here, though. His ability to lead the 2 minute drill without looking to the sideline for help will tack on at least another win or two throughout the season. The Vikings also proved they can pass the ball when they need to and don't need to lean on Adrian Peterson to win (85 yards on 19 carries). Now if only their offensive line would come together...


Vernon Davis is finally starting to live up to expectations. When Vernon Davis was drafted, he was seen as being the next truly elite NFL tight end. He's a physical freak that has an unbelievable blend of size and speed. It just goes to show that you can't get by on talent alone in the NFL. With Mike Singletary having a team first approach, he seems to be ready to make the turn. Frank Gore is out the next few weeks which means this team will need to find a new superstar to rely on...Davis could be that guy.


The Philadelphia Eagles have the best stable of quarterbacks in the league. Now I'm not saying they have the best overall quarterback in the league, but it's hard to argue with three ex-pro bowl quarterbacks and a guy named Kolb who throws for over 300 yards every game. Maybe they should stop hogging all the good quarterbacks while poor teams like Cleveland can't even make up their mind on which quarterback they have is worse.


Steve Smith will have a better season than Steve Smith. Hmm...maybe I should clarify. Steve Smith of the Giants will have a better season than Steve Smith of the Panthers . While the Panthers Steve Smith will still have his huge weeks, the Giants Steve Smith will be a consistent week in and week out performer. With Jake Delhomme having the worst season of his career, it's hard to imagine Smith putting up consistent numbers this year...which might upset him. Thank God he's not the kind of player who would punch someone in the face, huh?


The Tennessee Titans are similar to my fantasy team. The team with the best record during the regular season last year has fallen to 0-3. Out of those three games, they've lost by a combined total of 13 points....or about 4 points per game. My fantasy team is 1-2 with my two losses being by two points each. At least I've won a game.


The Baltimore Ravens are scary this year. Who would have guessed that after three weeks the Ravens would have the 2 nd most points scored in the league with a 34.3 ppg average? Joe Flacco is making me think he's a better quarterback than Matt Ryan every week I watch him. While their defense isn't nearly as good as it once was, you can't argue with 17.7 ppg when your team is an offensive juggernaut. I'm looking forward to their game this week against the Patriots as both teams seem like they still have a lot to prove.


I thought I knew what ugly was... and then I saw the Seattle Seahawks glow in the dark jerseys.


Matt Forte is looking more like Cedric Benson . While he was a Bear, that is. Everyone thought this was going to be the week Forte broke out of his slump against a Seahawks team that just gave up over 200 yards rushing to Frank Gore. He still had his best game of the season with 66 yards rushing and 40 yards receiving, but these are still no where near the statistics a top 5 running back should be putting up. The good news? Forte's next five opponents are Detroit, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Arizona. If he doesn't produce during that span, there's no hope left.


Fred Jackson is Buffalo's biggest offensive threat. With both Terrell Owens and Lee Evans falling out of fantasy relevance, there's only one player on that team worth starting on a regular basis: Fred Jackson. Marshawn Lynch is scheduled to return this week, but it'd be a mistake for the Bills to start him over Jackson. He is for them what Matt Forte was for the Bears last season. It seems their entire offense revolves around him. It will be nice having Lynch back to give Jackson a breather here and there, but until he slows down, there's no reason to have him out of the game.


Detroit is no longer the worst team in the league. In fact, they're not even in the bottom five of the league anymore. They have a solid young quarterback in Matthew Stafford , one of the leagues best receivers in Calvin Johnson , and a great young running back in Kevin Smith . They still have a long ways to go, but at least they finally seem to be headed in the right direction.


The Houston Texans will disappoint again this season. The Texans are one of those teams that seems to have high expectations coming into every season no matter how terrible their previous season was. It's hard to win games when you rank 30 th in rush yards and 32 nd in rush yards allowed per game. With the Colts playing their usual dominant football, the best they could hope for is a wild card spot...which the 11-5 Patriots missed out on last season.


The Bengals are the most improved team of 2009. Being a Vikings fan, all I wanted to do was laugh at Packer fans for their team losing to the embarrassing Cincinnati Bengals. Then they had to go out and beat the defending world champions. Well...there goes that idea. The Bengals are a circus catch away from being 3-0 and are suddenly a team that's worth paying attention to. It'll still be hard for them to make the playoffs because of their tough division and being in the AFC, but it's at least attainable this year.


Don't get too excited, Broncos fans. Last season the Broncos started out 3-0 as well and ended the season 8-8. Now they have Kyle Orton instead of Jay Cutler , have beaten teams with a combined record of 3-6, and have pushover Josh McDaniels instead of Mike Shanahan. At least they're still in the AFC West.


That's all for this week. Look for more observations next week.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com