Monday, September 30, 2013

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Week 4

The Good: London. The National Football League (NFL) had their yearly game in London this year and this got me to thinking if London might find itself with a team in the future. There were already rumors speculating that London is trying to get a team or at the very least a Super Bowl in their arena. A couple weeks ago I was playing Madden and I decided to start a fantasy with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Gutsy decision I know but I’m a sucker for their new jerseys. After the season I moved the team from Jacksonville to London as the London Black Knights. Interestingly enough, the owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars, Shahid Khan, has interest London. He has been quoted saying that “Jaguars are the home team for London.” Not to mention that he just became the new owner of Fulham.  It might not be long before we see a team, not necessarily Jacksonville, move to London. The market, fan base, and opportunities that London would provide would be an excellent business decision for a few struggling NFL teams at the moment.

But now back to this weekends game. Minnesota Vikings came up on top of the Pittsburgh Steelers 34-27. With Minnesota winning under back up quarterback Matt Cassel, I think we might have seen the last of Christian Ponder as the starter. But hey he still has a more than attractive wife (Sam Ponder) at home so life isn’t too bad for him. Pittsburgh to me is on the decline. They have a very old roster and it shows. Being down 0-4 in their division isn’t a very good sign for the future of Mike Tomlin and the organization.

The Bad: Houston Texans. More specifically, Matt Schaub. The Texans seemingly had the game one with a one touchdown lead with five minutes to go. I couldn’t help but think to myself that they wouldn’t dare to throw it but Matt Schaub decided to do just that. Instead of just handing it to Arian Foster who was having his best game of the season he decided to throw it and to the side of Richard Sherman as if throwing it wasn’t bad enough. Richard Sherman wound up intercepting the ball and taking it all the way back for the score to tie the game. The game ended up going to overtime where the Seattle Seahawks ended up winning the game 23-20.

I was never a huge Matt Schaub fan just because he seemed too boring of a player to me. Yes not every quarterback has to be electrifying and throw it deep every time to be successful, look at Alex Smith with the Kansas City Chiefs, but I feel like Matt Schaub’s time has passed and its time for the organization to look a different way. I felt he was over rated as a player coming out of Atlanta and as a quarter back in Houston. He never won a play off game for the organization and it makes me feel a little bad for the organization because I feel like with a different quarterback they could have and still could make a huge Super Bowl run.

I hate to say it but it reminded me of Donovan McNabb towards the end of his career. Whether both of the quarterbacks chose to change the play or the call came from the head coach, the quarterback is going to take the most heat for it. Even if the coach did call that play, Schaub, like McNabb, forced the pass in there and that caused it to be intercepted.

The Ugly: NFC East. Three out of the four teams in the NFC East lost this week and the one that actually managed to put up a “W” was the Washington Redskins against the Oakland Raiders. Washington did pull off an impressive comeback win after a more than shaky start. However, a lot of us were expecting a much better outing from Robert Griffen III and the Redskins against the Raiders defense. Each of the other three teams saw yet another loss added on to their record making Dallas 2-2, the Eagles 1-3 and the Giants 0-4. The NFC East had the worst win percentage in the league coming in to this week and it didn’t get any better this Sunday. Growing up, the NFC East was one of the best divisions in the league and now its become nothing more than an afterthought.

The Denver Broncos with a score of 52-20 dominated the Philadelphia Eagles in every dimension of the game. The Eagles’ defense looked horrible, as they could not stop Peyton Manning the whole game. Brock Osweiler came into the game in the fourth quarter and picked up right where Peyton Manning left off. The Philadelphia special teams, which usually are the one bright spot in past weeks, looked dreadful giving up a kick off return and a blocked punt for a touchdown. Being an Eagles fan I can at least say the New York Giants are doing even worse than they are.

The Giants lost 31-7 in Kansas City. The team looked a little better than last week but only a little. Eli Manning added more turnovers to his already huge number on the season through four games. The offensive line that let Manning down the week before was a little better but it was his receives who let him down this week. While I was watching the game, I started to wonder how much of the turnovers were Eli’s fault. After doing some research, I found that a lot of them were just miscommunication between him and his receivers. That being the case, they need to get on the same page soon before they get in too steep of a whole. Their defense is absolutely terrible and I think this might be the last we have seen of Tom Coughlin.

The Dallas Cowboys looked like they were about pull away with the game by halftime after they led 21-13 thanks to a stellar half by Dez Bryant. However, San Diego rallied to score an unanswered 17 points in the second half and led 30-21. Dallas had the ball with 2 and some change minutes to go in the fourth quarter. Tony Romo made a nice pass to rookie Terrance Williams who looked as if he was going to score to pull the game within two. Unfortunately, as Williams went to reach the ball over the pylon but Eric Weddle was right there to hit the ball away. After the fumble was recovered by San Diego in the end zone, the game was over after Phillip Rivers ran out the clock. All in all it was a tough week for the NFC East.


Lindrit Shkodra is originally from Diber, Macedonia but lives in Maple Shade, NJ. He is a sophomore in the Sports Management program and is currently the Treasurer of the Drexel Sport Management Student Union. He has work experience with Ron Jaworski's Celebrity Golf Challenge and Ridgewells Catering at the 2013 U.S. Open.  Follow Lindrit on Twitter @LindritShkodra.

Connect with Lindrit Shkodra on LinkedIn.

1 comment: