In its zeal to constantly inject more scoring into games, has the NFL gone too far?
Ben Roethlisberger had back to back 6 TD games. That’s never happened before.
This week Aaron Rodgers had 6 TDs at the half. That hasn’t happened in 45 years. I doubt it will take another 45 to happen again.
Hell, who are the Bears playing this week?
All these rule changes are not making games more entertaining. There’s nothing entertaining about watching a team go on a scoring drive where every other play is a gain from a defensive penalty.
They are, however, coming dangerously close to making truly spectacular passing performances commonplace and, therefore, ordinary and mundane.
How much fun will it be to watch football if 400 yards and 5 passing TDs is a ho-hum game that literally any bum quarterback can get?
This Week’s Sucked And Won
Andre Ellington, RB (ARZ). The Cardinals go-to back had just 23 yards on 18 carries and caught 5 balls for 19 more yards. That means he got 10% of the Cardinals’ yards despite getting more than a third of the offensive touches.
Think Michael Vick and Rex Ryan are trying extra hard to score some wins for the New York Jets? Both men have to feel screwed over by GM John Idzik, and neither of them, I’m sure, would mind if Idzik has a lower rather than higher draft pick to work with next season. Keep an eye on this team down the stretch.
Shocking realization of the week
The last time the Cleveland Browns were in first place this late in the season, I was still in my 20s.
Did Jimmy Graham push off on the last second play in regulation against San Francisco? It appears he did, but it really makes me nauseous that Perrish Cox took a major dive looking to get that call. Players need to trust officials to make that call without the histrionics. Maybe that particular type of play should be reviewable. I’d rather watch reply review than yet another guy taking a dive.
This Week’s Great But Lost
Marcell Dareus, DT (BUF). On a day when defense was the word, Dareus was a man one man wrecking crew against the Chiefs, recording 7 tackles, 3 sacks, and putting the hit on Alex Smith 4 times.
Did you lump Super Bowl champion Seattle into a pile carelessly labeled “having an off year?” Chew on this: the Seahawks are 6-3, which puts them just off the NFC pace. They still play the 49ers and the Cardinals twice each, and Arizona just lost Carson Palmer for the season. Don’t be surprised if they win the West and head into the playoffs hot.
Thursday Pick: Buffalo (+5.5) @Miami (Wynn Las Vegas)
This game features two really good defenses, and it’s a divisional rivalry so I’m expecting a tight game, not real high scoring. Buffalo has fared pretty well against Miami over the last few years, and while I don’t think the Bills are gonna win this game outright, I do think they stay within a few points.
Miami Dolphins 21 Buffalo Bills 17
Buffalo @Miami over/under 42.5 (Stations)
Miami has played four straight games at 41 points or less. Buffalo, meanwhile, comes in under 40 every time they play a tough defensive team, including Miami earlier in the season. I’m inclined to go under here.
Miami Dolphins 21 Buffalo Bills 17
“I felt like we had a good week of practice and guys seemed to be into it, ready to go for the game. Prime-time game, national TV. Unfortunately, we came out here and we laid an egg.” – Bears safety Ryan Mundy.
“I think I’m Drew Brees’ Kryptonite.” – 49ers LB Ahmad Brooks, following the 49ers’ OT victory over the Saints.
“I had flashbacks when it bounced our way. Things went our way in a way where you’re like, ‘This is happening again.’’’ – Chiefs LB Tamba Hali, on Kansas City’s deja vu win over Buffalo.
“It’s hard right now, but good things come to those who wait, and I am patiently waiting.” – Raiders QB Derek Carr, on Oakland’s tough season.
“There were a lot of angry people in here at halftime. That first half is not the football we want to put on the field.” – Jaguars G Zane Beadles, on the team’s 17 point half-time deficit.
“In the huddle, I kept telling the offense, ‘We’ve got to kill this game.’” Dolphins WR Mike Wallace. The Lions scored the go ahead TD with :29 left.
“He was just like, ‘You’re the real deal. You’ve gotta keep working,’ He was like, ‘you’re gonna be a great player. Just keep working.’ ” – Giants WR Odell Beckham, on comments made to him by Seattle’s Richard Sherman.
“It always takes 60 minutes to play this game; that’s why they put it on the clock,” It wasn’t the prettiest 45, but it sure was a nice 15.” – Cardinals coach Bruce Arians, whose team scored 21 fourth quarter points to beat the Rams.
Featured image via Green Bay Packers’ Twitter