Archive for September, 2013

Dating across party lines

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

In dating, politics does matter

In dating, politics does matter.


NFL 2013 Week 3 Recap

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

NFL 2013 Week 3 Recap



Kansas City Chiefs at Philadelphia Eagles—Despite trying to focus on the players, this game was about the return of Walrus Lite Andy Reid. Philly fans once booed Santa Clause, and Thursday night was about tormenting Santa’s twin. Yet the Eagles fans showed class before the game by giving Reid a loud friendly ovation. They also cheered at halftime when Donovan McNabb had his #5 jersey retired by the team. In between those two events there was little for the Philly faithful to cheer about.


Reid was a Happy tusked fella when the opening kickoff was returned by the Chiefs 58 yards. The Chiefs wasted the opportunity but the Eagles fumbled the punt, giving Kansas City 1st and goal. Again the offense malfunctioned, but a 33 yard Ryan Succop field goal make it 3-0 Chiefs early on. Michael Vick then threw a pass that was deflected and intercepted for a short touchdown as the Chiefs quickly led 10-0.


Vick was a running phenom before his career was derailed, but he showed a flash of why he was known as Superman early in his career. He took a draw play himself 61 yards. On the next play he took a shot, but not before lofting a 25 yard touchdown pass. Chip Kelly went for a surprise 2 point conversion, but that did not work as the Eagles trailed 10-6 in a game where both coaches were pulling out all the stops early and often.


One play after Vick ran for 24 yards, the Eagles fumbled a shotgun snap. Then the Chiefs took  their turn when Succop missed a 51 yard field goal. Kansas City got it back and a short pass from Alex Smith to Avery went for 51 yards, setting up a 31 yard successful kick from Succop and a 13-6 Chiefs lead. Vick responded by throwing another interception as Succop hit from 34 to put the Chiefs up 16-6 with 2 1/2 minutes left in the half.


After four turnovers in the first half, the second half began with a fumbled snap out of the shotgun, although Philly retained possession. Philly again avoided a fifth turnover when another interception of Vick was negated by illegal contact. Another field goal had the Eagles within 16-9. Philadelphia got it back, and another completed Vick bomb led to a missed field goal.


With a short field, Kansas City created some daylight early in the fourth quarter when Jamal Charles ran it in from 3 yards out to make it 23-9 Chiefs with 12 1/2 minutes left in regulation. Yet one minute later Lesean McCoy broke free for a 41 yard touchdown run as the Eagles were right back in the game down 23-16.


The Chiefs fumbled the ensuing kickoff and took over at their own 5 yard line. Smith led an eight minute dink and dunk drive that actually included some running plays. Succup hit his fourth field goal from 38 yards out to give the Chiefs some breathing room with a 10 point cushion with 3 1/2 minutes to play. A sack of Vick caused another fumble that the Chiefs recovered to lock up the win as Reid’s tusks beamed. 26-16 Chiefs





Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens — For the second week in a row the Ravens trailed 6-0. Last week they trailed Cleveland by that amount before rallying to win 14-6. Now it is Houston with a pair of field goals. All the talk in the offseason was the Ravens defense and the losses of Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. The problem with Baltimore is their offense. Losing Anquon Boldin hurt. Offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell is so concerned he is on the verge of making a facial expression. Bullock hit the 27 and 29 yarders to give the Texans lead.


Yet the Ravens are about defense. After Justin Tucker hit a 28 yarded to get the Ravens on the board, Smith intercepted Matt Schaub for a 37 yard return touchdown as the Ravens took the lead. Then special teams got in the act as Doss returned a punt 82 yards for another score to put the Ravens firmly in command 17-6.


Houston would add a third field goal before the half, but Joe Flacco then led the Ravens 80 yards in the third quarter. Pierce ran it in from the one to make it 24-9 Ravens, which should be a familiar score for these teams that haunts the Texans from their playoff loss to the Ravens. Tucker added two more field goals from 45 and 43 as the Ravens shook off their sluggish start. 30-9 Ravens



New York Giants at Carolina Panthers — This game was a shocker. Both teams were 0-2, although the Giants were expected to rebound while Carolina had a pair of agonizing losses that were decided at the end. Yet this was one of this unexplainable Any Given Sunday games.


Carolina simply throttled the Giants. Eli Manning was sacked 6 times in the first half alone and the Giants had only 18 yards by halftime. Captain Grumpy Tom Coughlin was ready to fire all 45 players by halftime. Mike Tolbert began the route with a 2 yard touchdown run early on. In the second quarter Graham Gano nailed a 53 yard field goal and Cam Newton Hit Brad Lafell for a 16 yard score as the Panthers led 17-0 at halftime.


Newton loves doing the Superman pose, but on this day he was. He went back to LaFell for a 20 yard touchdown in the third quarter and then ran for a 3 yard touchdown. In the fourth quarter he hit Ted Ginn for a 47 yarded as the Panthers walloped the Giants in an absolute shocker. Carolina got in the win column while the 0-3 Giants have Coughlin searching for answers. Congratulations to Panthers coach Ron Rivera for his great present during Hispanic Heritage Month. 38-0 Panthers




Detroit Lions at Washington Redskins — The Lions had never beaten the Redskins in Washington, going 0 for 21 during their history. Matthew Stafford began by throwing a completion to Deangelo Hall, who plays defense for Washington. Hall returned the gift 17 yards for a touchdown and the 7-0 Redskins lead. Detroit came back with an 85 yard drive and Bell ran it in from 12 yards out to tie the game 7-7.


In the second quarter it was Stafford to Fauria for the 5 yard score as the Lions had their first lead. Yet Alfred Morris broke free for a 30 yard touchdown run to tie the game 14-14. David Akers hit a 32 yard field goal as the Lions led 17-14 at halftime.

In the third quarter Potter kicked a 43 yarded as the teams were tied 17-17 after three quarters.


Akers hit a 28 yarded to put the Lions back in front, and Stafford hit Megatron Calvin Johnson for an 11 yard touchdown to give the Lions a 27-17 cushion with 4 minutes left. RGIII moved the Redskins from their 25 to a 1st and goal at the 3 at the 2 minute warning. Yet 3 incompletions later and needing 2 scores, Mike Shanahan opted for the field goal. Potter hit from 21 and it was a one score game again.


The onside kick failed but the Redskins got the ball back with 38 seconds left at their own 20. From midfield, the final Hail Mary by RGIII etched the end zone but fell incomplete. Jim Schwartz pumped his fists as the Lions now have a win at Washington. As for Mike Shanahan and RGIII, they are now 0-3 with 2 of those losses at home. RGIII did throw for 326 yards and one interception, while Stafford threw for 385 yards, two touchdowns, and the early interception. 27-20 Lions




Arizona Cardinals at New Orleans Saints — Carson Palmer led an 11 play, 80 yard drive that consumed 6 minutes and ended with Smith running it in from 3 yards out. The Cardinals led 7-0. This concludes Cardinals highlights.


Drew Brees went to work and hit Robert Meachem for a 27 yard touchdown. In the second quarter Brees hit Graham for the 16 yard score. In the third quarter a 31 yard Garrett Hartley field goal had the Saints up 17-7 entering the final quarter.


The close game was then broken wide open as Brees ran it in from 7 yards out and hit Graham for a 7 yard score to complete the blowout. Brees finished 29 of 46 for 342 yards, 3 touchdowns and one interception. The Saints are 3-0 and playing like it. 31-7 Saints


San Diego Chargers at Tennessee Titans — Philip Rivers hit Antonio gates for a 7 yard touchdown to put the Chargers up 7-0. A defensive stand near the goal line force the Titans to settle for a 20 yard Rob Bironas field goal. Nick Novak answered for the Chargers with a 44 yarded. Just before the half, Jake Locker finally got the Titans in the end zone with a 7 yard run as the teams went to the half tied 10-10. The second half featured hard hitting defense and another fantastic finish.


Ronnie Brown ran it in from one yard out to put the Chargers up 17-10, and in the fourth quarter Bironas hit a 37 yarded to get the Titans within 17-13. The Chargers were unable to run out the clock as the Titans had one last shot from their own 6 yard line with 2:17 to play.


Locker put on a passing clinic, hitting Kenny Wirght for 9, Walker for 11, Williams for 9, Wright for 16, and Preston for 4. On 3rd and 6 from the Chargers 45 with 44 seconds left, Locker hit Nate Washington for 11. With 21 seconds left, the Titans faced 3rd and 10 from the Chargers 34. Locker went deep and found Justin Hunter for the touchdown as the Chargers bench collapsed in agony.


15 seconds still remained, and the Chargers had one last chance at a Hail Mary of their own from midfield. Instead Mike McCoy went for the hook and laterals, but there would be no reverse Music City Miracle as the play gained about 20 yards before losing 40 yards. The Chargers have had 3 straight cardiac games but are only 1-2 while the 2-1 Titans under Mike Munchak are winning with attitude and hard nosed play. 20-17 Titans



Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New England Patriots — Neither the Bucs or Pats have been meeting expectations even though the Patriots are 2-0. Early on their offensive struggles are continuing as the Pirates of Pewter Power under Greg Schiano are bringing back Buc Ball. A 30 yard Ryan Lindell field goal capped off a 13 play, 76 yard, 6 minute drive to make it 3-0 Buccaneers. For the third straight week, Tom Brady is out of rhythm early on.


Reality then finally set in at the Bucs-Pats game. Brady hit Kendrell Thompkins for 16 yards and a 7-3 New England lead. That should be enough to finish the Bucs, since Schiano may trade Josh Freeman at halftime. Brady would go back to Thompkins for a 5 yard touchdown and Stephen Gostkowski would drill a 53 yard field goal just before the half as the Patriots were firmly in control up 17-3.


Another hideous second half for both teams resulted in Gostkowski kicking field goals from 46 and 33 to complete the blowout. The Bucs are every bit as bad as their 0-3 record while the Patriots, despite complaints, are still 3-0 and only going to get better. Former Bucs cornerback Aqib Talib had another interception for the Patriots while Darrell Revis did not. 23-3 Patriots


Green Bay Packers at Cincinnati Bengals — Cincinnati jumped on Green Bay at the outset as Red Rifle Andy Dalton led a 10 play, 80 yard drive that consumed 5 1/2 minutes and saw Bernard leap over the top and stretch for the pylon to put the Bengals on the board first. Green Bay then fumbled the ensuing kickoff, setting up the Bengals at the Packers 2 yard line. Benjarvus Green-Ellis took it in to quickly make it 14-0 Bengals.


Meanwhile, the Bengals may no longer be the Bungles but they cannot handle prosperity. A Cincy fumble sets up a Packers field goal and another one is returned for a touchdown as 3 straight Bengals turnovers has the Packers within 14-10. LB Jennings returned the fumble for the score after Clay Matthews forced the fumble.


Cincinnati turned it over on 4 straight drives. Perhaps it still is the 1990s. Aaron Rodgers would get crunched at the goal line. He was unhappy on the sideline as Mike McCarthy opted for the field goal rather than gamble on 4th and goal at the one. Big Man BJ Raji intervened between McCarthy and Rogers to cool the flareup. Mason Crosby gets the Packers within 14-13, but another major defensive stand by the Cincy defense has them compensating for their turnover prone offense.


They could only compensate for so long as Mason Crosby would hit a 26 yard field goal at halftime to make it 16-14 Packers at halftime.



In the third quarter Green Bay continued rolling as Franklin ran it in from 2 yards out and Rodgers hit Jones for a 7 yard score. 30 straight points had the Packers leading 30-14 in a laugher. Then the laughter stopped.


Andy Dalton threw a 20 yard touchdown pass to AJ Green to get the Bengals within 30-21 after three quarters. The Bengals would miss a field goal in the fourth quarter, but Dalton then led a 95 yard drive that ended with him hitting Jones for an 11 yard score. The extra point was blocked, but the Bengals were within 30-27 with 11 minutes left in regulation.


Rodgers led a brilliant time consuming drive, bleeding 7 minutes off the clock. Despite pass happy Mike McCarthy hating to run, the Packers rushed for 182 yards on the day. Everything came to a head with the Packers facing 4th and 1 at the Bengals 30 with 4 minutes left. McCarthy decided to go for it to try to put the game out of reach. What happened next was a jaw dropper.


Franklin got the carry and he got stopped. He also fumbled the ball, and it was recovered by Nelson of the Bengals defense. Nelson then fumbled it and Terrence Newman of the Bengals picked it up. Newman raced 58 yards for a touchdown in front of a shellshocked Packers bench. Now it was the Bengals with 20 unanswered points and a 4 point lead.


Green Bay took over at their 20 and moved the Packers to a 4th and 5 at the Cincy 20. Rodgers then had his pass deflected and incomplete as the Bengals crowd erupted. In a stunner, it is the Packers who are 1-2 while the 2-1 Bengals had a comeback that is one of the best ever in franchise history. 34-30 Bengals.



St. Louis Rams at Dallas Cowboys — In the 1970s and 1980s, these teams had some thrilling playoff games. Now they enter a pair of 1-1 teams trying to silence critics. Only one team did so as this game was all Dallas.


Tony Romo threw three touchdown passes and DeMarco Murray ran wild for 175 yards as Dallas insisted they were committed to the running game. Romo hit Dez Bryant for a 2 yard score early and Dan Bailey added a 19 yard field goal. Murray took it in from 2 yards out to have Dallas up 17-0 at halftime.


In the third quarter Romo hit Escobar for a 24 yard score to make it 24-0. Sam Bradford would hit Pettis for a 4 yard touchdown, but Romo went to Harris for another 24 yard score as the Cowboys cruised. At 2-1 they lead the NFC Least while the Rams fell to 1-2 in their tough NFC West Division. Jerry Jones was so pleased that he extended Jason Garrett’s contract to allow him and the players to play next week. 31-7 Cowboys



Cleveland Browns at Minnesota Vikings — Cleveland decided to surrender the season by trading Trent Richardson to Indy for a 2014 1st round draft pick who will probably be a bust. Ex-honcho Walrus Mike Holmgren blasted the decision. The new Browns management also benched Brandon Weeden and decided to start 3rd string quarterback Brian Hoyer. Welcome to Browns preseason, or so we all thought.


Minnesota began by moving 80 yards in 11 plays in 5 1/2 minutes, with Adrian peterson getting the final deuce on the ground to make it 7-0 Vikings. The new look Browns responded with Hoyer hitting Gordon for a 47 yard touchdown to tie the game 7-7.


Hoyer continued looking impressive, quickly moving the Browns 82 yards and hitting Cameron for a 19 yard score to put the Browns on top. Yet Christian Ponder, who has faced heavy criticism for his play, answered with 80 quick yards. Ponder ran the final 6 yards himself to tie the game 14-14.


Hoyer completed 11 of his first 15 passes while Ponder is 8 for 11 as the Browns-Vikings game became far more interesting than expected. A field goal by Billy Cundiff from 38 yards out put the Browns up 17-14. Cleveland is all of a sudden a juggernaut, but their touchdown pass was not thrown by Hoyer. It certainly was not thrown by Weeden. It was Lanning with the 11 yard toss on the fake field goal to Cameron that had the Browns up 24-14.



Brian Walsh kicked a 43 yard field goal, and Ponder ran it in from 8 yards out as the Vikings tied the game 24-24 early in the fourth quarter. Ponder would then lead the Vikings with a solid drive that set up Walsh from 30 yards out. The kick was good and Minnesota had the 27-24 lead with 11 minutes left in regulation.


Minnesota had chances to run out the clock, but was unable to do so. With 3 1/2 minutes left a 35 yard punt gave the Browns one more chance from their own 45. On 3rd and 10 Hoyer hit gordon for 11. Hoyer hit Ogbonnaya for 11, Cameron for 13, and Gordon for 10. With one minute to go, the Browns faced 3rd and goal at the 7. The team that fired Marty Schottenheimer, Bud Carson and Walrus Mike Holmgren still had a chance to call the Sam Rutigliano Red Right 88 and throw an interception. Instead it was Hoyer to Cameron for the touchdown as the Browns had the 4 point lead.



Ponder had 47 seconds and 71 yards to go. He moved the Vikings to a 1st and 10 at the Cleveland 34 with 10 seconds left. His first Hail Mary was incomplete. On the final play, the ball never left his hand as he was sacked for an 8 yard loss. In a stunner, it was the Vikings and not the Browns who fell to 0-3. Meanwhile, forget Trent Richardson. The Browns may have a new quarterback, as Hoyer went 30 for 54 for 3 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. Brandon Weeden may not throw another pass for the Browns again, at least not as a starter. 31-27 Browns



Atlanta Falcons at Miami Dolphins — Atlanta has an offense and Miami has a defense as Atlanta went to play the surprising 2-0 Dolphins. Matt Ryan led a 14 play, 80 yard, 9 minute drive to start the game as the Falcons went on top 7-0 when Matty Ice hit Jason Snelling for the 7 yard touchdown. In the second quarter Ryan led an 11 play drive that took 6 more minutes of clock. Matt Bryant hit the 52 yard field goal to make it 10-0 Falcons.


Yet Miami fought back as 80 yards came quickly and the last 5 came from Thomas running it in. Ryan led another very long drive, going 13 plays, 78 yards, and consuming 8 more minutes. Yet the Falcons could not get past the Miami 3 yard line and settled for the field goal to lead 13-7. Sturgis hit a 46 yarded for Miami to get them to within 13-10 at the break.


In the third quarter Miami fumbled, and Atlanta took over at the Dolphins 12. Ryan hit Toilolo for the 2 yard score to make it 20-10 Falcons. Again, the Dolphins came back. Sturgis hit a 50 yard field goal to make it a one score game. Ryan Tannehill was intercepted, but the Falcons could not capitalize. Atlanta then fumbled a punt, giving Miami the ball at the Atlanta 19. On 3rd and 9 Tannehill hit Brad Hartline for the score as the game was deadlocked 20-20.


Bryant  added a 33 yard field goal to put the Falcons up 23-20 with 12 minutes left in regulation. With 4:46 to play the Dolphins mounted their final drive. from their 25. With 1:56 to play Tannehill converted a 3rd and 4 with a pass to Gibson at the Atlanta 29. He then went deep to Clay for 21 and Gibson again for 7 to put the ball on the one yard line with 43 seconds left. Tannehill hit Sims for the score and the Dolphins had the 4 point lead. Atlanta took over at their 20 and Ryan was quickly intercepted as the Dolphins got to a surprising 3-0 for Joe Philbin while Atlanta is a puzzling 1-2 for Mike Smith. 27-23 Dolphins




Buffalo Bills at New York Jets — The Bills and Jets both came in 1-1, but the Bills looked beautiful losing a heartbreaker and then winning last week in a cliffhanger at the gun. As for the Jets, both their win and loss came in hideously ugly fashion. Even by Jets standards, they set a tone for ugliness in this game with 20 penalties. Yet Geno Smith and EJ Manuel are both talented, and this game was worth watching.


Geno Smith ran it in from 8 yards out to have the Jets up 7-0 after the opening quarter. In the second quarter Dan Carpenter hit field goals of 37 and 23 to get Buffalo within 7-6, but then the Jets began pulling away. Smith hit Hill for a 51 yard touchdown and Nick Folk added a 47 yard field goal to have the Jets up 17-6 at halftime.


Folk would add a 34 yarded in the third quarter to make it 20-6 Jets. Buffalo moved well at times but had to settle for Carpenter field goals of 43 and 26 to get within 20-12. Yet in the fourth quarter finally scored in a big way as Manuel hit Chandler for a 33 yard touchdown. Manuel hit Stevie St. Johnson for the 2 point conversion as the game was tied 20-20 with 10 1/2 minutes left in regulation.


This time the Jets needed only one minute to retake the lead as Smith went deep to Santonio Holmes for a 69 yard touchdown. Buffalo had several chances with the ball but the Jets held on defense. Buffalo turned it over on downs with 1:48 left. The Jets had to punt again, but a perfect punt pinned the Bills at their own one with 21 seconds left. Needing 99 yards, the Bills came up short by 90 of them. The Jets may be one of the worst 2-1 teams in some time, but Rex Ryan will take it and most likely remind everybody the team has nothing to apologize for. 27-20 Jets



Indianapolis Colts at San Francisco 49ers — It was one thing for the 49ers to get beaten up on the road by an archival. Yet now they were at home against a struggling Indy team that was unimpressive at 1-1 with both games at home. The 49ers were expected to rebound. As for the Colts, they now have Trent Richardson, who was traded from Cleveland after only 18 games.


Andrew Luck began by leading an 80 yard drive that culminated in Richardson getting the one yard touchdown. Colin Kapernick responded with a 91 yard drive that saw Kendall Hunter run for a 13 yard score as the teams were deadlocked 7-7 after the first quarter. While the 49ers are known for defense, it was the Colts defense that shocked the home crowd. Adam Vinatieri would kick a 43 yard field goal in the second quarter and a 41 yarded in the third quarter as the Colts had a 13-7 lead after three quarters.


The fourth quarter was all Colts. Luck ran it in from 6 yards out and Ahmad Bradshaw added a one yard touchdown run as the Colts shocked the home crowd. The 49ers have been outscored 56-10 in their last 2 games and are a surprising 1-2 while the Colts are 2-1 with the emphatic road win. Jim Harbaugh had no answer today as the Chuck Pagano Colts showed that Chuck Strong still means plenty on the football field. 27-7 Colts


Jacksonville Jaguars at Seattle Seahawks — The largest blowout in NFL history was 73-0 back in 1940. Seattle had a chance to break that mark today hosing Jacksonville. The Seakawks were 9.5 point favorites. Jacksonville had a chance for perhaps the biggest inset since Super Bowl III, which was only an 18 point spread. Pete Carroll must feel like he is coaching USC during their dynasty, because the Seahawks are that good, the Jaguars are that bad, and this came was over by halftime.


Russell Wilson was 14 of 21 for 202 yards with 4 touchdown passes and one interception. Wilson hit Zach Miller for a 1 yard touchdown in the first quarter and a 4 yard second quarter to score to make it 14-0. Steve Hauschka hit a 21 yarded and Wilson hit Sidney Rice for an 11 yard second quarter score and a 23 yard third quarter touchdown to make it 31-0 Seattle.


Pete Carroll pulled the starters since there was no College Football Bowl berth on the line by running up the score. Jacksonville would eventually put some points on the board, but backup Seattle quarterback Tarvaris Jackson had some fun of his own in hitting Donald Baldwin for a 35 yard score and running for a 5 yard touchdown. This was not a football game. It was a carpet-bombing. 45-17 Seahawks


Chicago Bears at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Chicago Bears at 2-0 may not be that good, but the 0-2 Steelers really are that bad. Chicago jumped all over the Steelers from the outset. Robbie Gould hit a 47 yard field goal. Pittsburgh then fumbled and Chicago took over at the Steelers 17. Matt Forte ran it in from 5 yards out to make it 10-0. Forte then ran for a 55 yard gain to set up 4th and goal from inches away. Marc Trestman went for it and battering ram Michael Bush banged in to make it 17-0 Bears after the opening quarter.


The Steelers did get a 27 yard Shawn Suisham field goal and then got the ball back, but Big Ben Roethlisberger was intercepted by Michael Wright. Wright returned it 38 yards for the score as the Bears were walloping the Steelers 24-3.


Chicago almost put the game away but an attempted block punt was just missed, resulting in a critical roughing the kicker penalty against the Bears. So rather than vie it back to Jay Cutler and the offense, Pittsburgh kept the ball. Given a second chance, Big Ben hit Antonio Brown for a 33 yard strike to give the Steelers some life down 24-10.


The third quarter saw another Pittsburgh turnover in their own territory that led to a field goal and a 27-10 Bears lead. Pittsburgh began fighting back. Shawn Suisham hit a 36 yard field goal and Roethlisberger found Antonio Brown for a 21 yard touchdown. In the fourth quarter Suisham hit a 44 yarded and the Steelers were only down 27-23.


Cutler threw a pass to the end zone to Bennett that was ruled out of bounds, and it seemed like Pittsburgh had life. Yet Marc Trestman challenged the call, and it was reversed to a 17 yard touchdown. Julius Peppers added the final insurance by recovering a fumble of Big Ben and returning it 42 yards for the clinching touchdown. 40-23 Bears



Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos was the Monday night game. The Raiders went 3 and out and Denver started at their own 45. Peyton Manning completed 5 of 6 passes as defensive penalties killed the Raiders on 3rd down. A 2 yard toss to Eric Decker had Denver up 7-0 only 4 1/2 minutes into the game.


On 3rd and 7 Terrelle Pryor threw a completion for a first down, but offensive pass interference negated it. Then on 3rd and 17 a perfect pass for a first down was dropped as the Raiders punted again.


The Raiders went 3 and out on their first 3 drives as the 3rd drive saw 2 runs net zero yards and a Dink and Dunk West Coast Offense pass that padded the stats but accomplished nothing. The Raiders began their first 3 drives from their 13, 15 and 9. Denver began 2 of their first 3 drives past their own 40. Matt Prater would drill a 53 yard field goal to make it 10-0 Broncos.


A touchback gave the Raiders their best field position and Pryor ran for 22 yards. Yet they reached the Denver 45 before punting. Manning would hit Wes Welker for a 12 yard touchdown to make it 17-0 Broncos.


The Raiders finally got on the board when Pryor went deep over the middle to Denarius Moore. Moore spun away from two tackers and outraced everybody for a 73 yard touchdown to get the Raiders within 17-7 with 6 minutes left in the half. Yet Manning needed only one play to connect with Eric Decker for a 61 yard gain as Decker repeatedly faked out the Oakland defense up the field. On 3rd and 4 from the 13, Manning hit Denarius Thomas for the score as Denver was rolling 24-7.


Pryor started 7 of 11 for 101 yards and the touchdown, but Manning began 21 of 24 for 264 yards and 3 touchdowns. Yes, that was only the first half as Prater added a 41 yard field goal to make it 27-7 Broncos at halftime. While a 68 yard field goal try is tough, at least it would have given the Raiders a lift to try it. Dennis Allen instead went for the Hail Mary, resulting in a sack and ensuring the Raiders would have nothing to take pride in at halftime. Bad coaching decision by Dennis Allen to end the half. Sebastian Janikowski deserved a chance at history.



Manning began the third quarter every bit as red hot and Prater added a 40 yard field goal to make it 30-7 Broncos. The Raiders then finally showed a spark. The defense forced a fumble of Peyton Manning. After a long completion, Terrell Pryor pitched it to Darren McFadden, who threw a touchdown pass Marcel Reece. The Raiders trailed 30-14 after three quarters but at least showed heart. Yet the defense had no answers for Manning, who switched from passing to running the ball out of the draw play. Monte Ball crashed on from one yard out to make it 37-14. A garbage touchdown late concluded the scoring. 37-21 Broncos






NFL 2013 predictions already worthless

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

One week in, NFL predictions already gone wrong


One week into the 2013 NFL season, and some predictions have already gone wrong.


People love bragging about what they get right, but character involves admitting wrongs. As a Jewish person celebrating the Day of Atonement of Yom Kippur, here are 2013 predictions that require more apologies before heading into the Week 2 NFL Chat.


Prediction: The Tennessee Titans will be a 3-13 football team and the Pittsburgh Steelers will go 11-5.


Reality: Tennessee went into Pittsburgh and hit the Steelers in the mouth. It is too soon to tell if the Titans are better than advertised or the Steelers are far worse, but either way this game was a shock for many fans.


Prediction: The Oakland Raiders would go 3-13.


Reality: Terrell Pryor has talent. The Raiders looked like an 0-16 team in preseason, but they began the regular season going on the road and taking the Colts to the limit. The Raiders lost the game, but earned the respect of many doubters. If they lose at home to Jacksonville they will revert back to laughingstock status, but it looks like the Raiders are on the road back to relevance.


Prediction: The Chip Kelly offense is a gimmick best left in college.


Reality: The Eagles up-tempo offense is for real. Philadelphia went on the road and ran 52 plays in the first half. Michael Vick looked fantastic as the Eagles built up a 33-7 lead against Washington and hung on for a 33-27 win. The Washington defense was exhausted.


Prediction: The Buffalo Bills would go 3-13.


Reality: Despite a rookie quarterback, Buffalo hung tough against what was supposed to be a far superior New England team. The Patriots survived with a wining field goal on the final play, but the Bills are another team that may end up more respectable than previously thought.


Week 2 began with the Thursday night game and the prediction that the New England Patriots were supposed to crush the New York Jets and cover the 12.5 point spread. In reality the Patriots again barely survived, hanging on for a hideous 13-10 win.


Now comes the rest of Week 2, which will hopefully lead to far fewer busted predictions.


Sunday, September 15 



San Diego Chargers at Philadelphia Eagles (-7)

These teams both have talent, and the San Diego collapse last week should motivate them. The Eagles, however, are at home. Eagles win, but fail to cover.


Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens (-6.5)

New year, same Browns. The Ravens may not be as good as last year but the Browns are just as pathetic. Ravens cover.


Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans (-8.5)

Are the Titans better than we thought or did they beat a team who is just awful? Since they were on the road last week, they will get the benefit of the doubt for one more week. Texans win, but fail to cover.


Miami Dolphins at Indianapolis Colts (-3)

Miami beat an awful team, while Indy barely survived at home against a team perceived to be awful. The spread is low enough. Colts cover.


Carolina Panthers (-3) at Buffalo Bills

Both of these teams hung tough last week against superior teams in heartbreaking losses. The home field could be the difference. Upset special, Bills win outright.


St. Louis Rams at Atlanta Falcons (-7)

Atlanta lost a road heartbreaker while St. Louis won a home thriller. Atlanta is the better team but St. Louis has a defense. Falcons win but fail to cover.


Washington Redskins at Green Bay Packers (-7.5)

Both teams lost on the road, but the Packers looked solid on offense while questions about over whether RGIII is truly healthy. The spread is high even though Green Bay is loaded. Washington gets one more week to prove itself. Packers win but fail to cover.


Dallas Cowboys at Kansas City Chiefs (-2.5)

Walrus Lite Andy Reid will turn the Chiefs around, but even a big win against Jacksonville does not count. Upset special, Cowboys win outright.


Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears (-6.5)

Adrian Peterson cannot do it all by itself. The Bears are not that special, but neither were the Lions. Bears win but fail to cover.




New Orleans Saints (-3) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers needed help from the refs to survive their opener against a dreadful team. The Saints are a far better team than the Bucs. Drew Brees will do what Drew Brees does. Saints cover.


Detroit Lions (-1) at Arizona Cardinals

This could be a shootout. Go with the home team on this one. Upset special, Cardinals win outright.


Jacksonville Jaguars at Oakland Raiders (-6)

These teams both looked like 0-16 teams in preseason, but the Raiders looked like a real football team last week. Jacksonville did not. The spread is still too high as bad as the Jags are until Oakland proves itself with a big win. Raiders win but fail to cover.


Denver Broncos (-5) at New York Giants

The original Manning Bowl saw Peyton go on the road and beat Eli. Peyton looked all world last week, but Captain Grumpy Tom Coughlin is sure to have the Giants motivated after their six turnover performance. Denver is superior, but the Giants rise to the occasion in games like this, especially around 9/11. Upset special, Giants win outright.




San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks (-3)

These teams are nasty mirror images of each other, especially on defense. In this series, take the home team. Seahawks cover.


Monday, September 16, 8:30pm


Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals (-7)

The Steelers looked shockingly awful at home in a loss to an inferior team. They also suffered serious injuries. Cincinnati lost a close road game. The Bengals could win a blowout, but Mike Tomlin deserves the chance to see if his motivational magic can stir his team. Bengals win, but fail to cover.


Follow Eric on Twitter @TYGRRRREXPRESS Eric Golub is an independent writer for the Communities.


Read more from Eric at his TYGRRRR EXPRESS blog. 

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NFL 2013 Week 3 Prequel

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

Predictions, meet garbage: The NFL 2013 Week 3 Prequel

As bad as some predictions were before NFL 2013 began, there comes a time to wave a white flag. “Any given Sunday” makes the NFL the world’s greatest game as predictions get tossed into the garbage.

With that, here is the Week 3 Preview.


Eleanor Holmes-Norton: The Shemp of Congress

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Eleanor Holmes-Norton to investigate what she does

In an effort to provide more transparency in government, Washington, DC Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes-Norton has launched a congressional investigation to determine exactly what it is she does for a living.



Self-Praiser in Chief keeps campaigning as Americans are killed

Monday, September 16th, 2013

President Obama gives campaign speech in wake of murdered Navy soldiers

The real news of September 16th, 2013 was that there was a tragic Navy Yard shooting in Washington, DC.

While most Americans recoiled in horror at an act of evil, President Obama treated it as an inconvenience and minor annoyance. The shooter altered the news story about the day, which was supposed to be an Obama press conference where Obama would resume his role as Self-Praiser in Chief of all things Obama.



Navy Murders–More questions than answers

Monday, September 16th, 2013


The only thing we know about the tragic Navy Yard shooting is that we do not know anything.






NFL 2013 Week 2 Recap

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

NFL 2013 Week 2 Recap

Between the 9/11 anniversary, Yom Kippur, and the Navy tragedy, it has been a harrowing few days. Football can unite us all and help the healing. Here is the NFL 2013 Week 2 Recap.

New York Jets at New England Patriots—Bill Bellichick and Tom Brady love running it up on Rex Ryan. Both teams won last week, although the Jets were bailed out by the refs. This was the reality check.


Only 2 minutes into the game, Brady had led the Patriots 81 yards, with a 39 yard touchdown pass to Dobson quickly making it 7-0. The Jets turned it over deep in their own territory. This time their defense held, but a 21 yard Stephen Gostkowski had the Patriots up 10-0 early in the first quarter. League rules required the rest of the game be played.


Geno Smith did lead the Jets to a 37 yard Nick Folk field goal, but the Patriots responded in the second quarter with Gostkowski hitting from 30 as the Patriots led 13-3 at halftime. The second half saw the weather get worse, and a dull game become a slog.

In the third quarter Powell ran it in from three yards out as the Jets only trailed 13-10 after three quarters. Smith was managing the game well, but with 11 minutes left in regulation and the Jets driving, Smith threw a pass into traffic that was deflected and intercepted by Aqib Talib at the Patriots 11.

With 4 1/2 minutes left, again Smith led the Jets past midfield and again Smith was intercepted.


The Jets got it back with one minute left in regulation at their own 29. Smith was intercepted for the third time, the second pick by Talib. For the second week in a row these teams both played a game that was far more hideous than expected. Despite their offense getting shut out the entire second half, it was the defense that got the job done for the Evil Hoodie. 13-10 Patriots


St. Louis Rams at Atlanta Falcons—Former Rams running back Stephen Jackson now plays for the Falcons, and he plowed in to put Atlanta up 7-0 early on. Matty Ice Ryan then found Julio Jones, who outraced everybody for an 81 yard score to make it 14-0 Falcons. Sam Bradfors then completed a pass to Osi Umenyora, who plays defense for Atlanta. Umenyora took the interception 68 yards the other way for another score and a 21-0 Falcons lead. The teams exchanged field goals as the Falcons had a comfortable 24-3 halftime lead.


The Rams made a game of it in the second half. Bradford hit Austin for a 6 yard score and Pettis for a 3 yard touchdown as the Rams only trailed 24-17 early in the fourth quarter. Ryan led an 80 yard drive that was culminated with an 11 yard Jason Snelling run to put the game out of reach. Bradford would hit Austin again for a 10 yard score, but only 2:16 remained. Atlanta faced 3rd and 1 from their 29, and Ryan hit Snelling for 22 yards as the Rams never got the ball back. 31-24 Falcons




Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens—Peace in the Middle East seemed more likely than the Browns going on the road and beating the defending champion Ravens. Yet in an absolute shocker, the Browns lead the defending champion Ravens 6-0 at halftime on  pair of field goals. The Browns have not had much success since Otto Graham and Paul Brown and Jim Brown were gone by the 1960s. The last half a century has been tough. A win over the defending champs would make a statement.



The only statement in the second half came from the Baltimore defense. Flacco would lead an 80 yard drive and Pierce scored from 5 yards out to put the Ravens up 7-6. The fourth quarter began with the Browns facing 4th and 3 at the Baltimore 39. A West Coast Offense dink and dunk pass came up a yard short. With 9 minutes left in regulation Flacco hit Brown for the touchdown and the 8 point lead. The Ravens defense knocked Brandon Weeden out of the game. Jason Campbell came in at his own 1 yard line needing to go 99 yards. He did not, as the Ravens won an ugly one. 14-6 Ravens




Carolina Panthers at Buffalo Bills—Both of these teams lost heartbreakers last week in the final moments. Buffalo got on the board first with a field goal in this game, but Cam Newton led a 10 play, 90 yard drive in the second quarter. A 13 yard touchdown pass had the Panthers up 7-3 at halftime of a game that probably had more fans in Eastern Canada than in the continental United States.



The second half brought much more action. The Bills moved 14 plays to a 2nd and goal at the 2, but settled for a 20 yard field goal and a 7-6 deficit. Newton went deep to Ted Ginn for a 40 yard touchdown and a 14-6 Panthers lead. EJ Manuel hit Stevie St. Johnson for a 45 yard gain and Fred Jackson ran it in from 4 yards out. Manuel hit Woods for the 2 point conversion to tie the game 14-14.


Buffalo would fumble in their own territory to set up a Carolina field goal early in the fourth quarter from 27 yards out. Graham Gano would tack on a 25 yarded as the Panthers led 20-14. Yet they kept driving near the goal line without getting in. Carpenter hit from 48 to get the Bills within 20-17. With 1:42 to play a key decision had to be made.


The Panthers faced 4th and 1 at the Buffalo 21. Ron Rivera played not to lose rather than go for the win. The Bills were out of timeouts. If the Panthers convert, the game is over. Instead they played it conservatively and Gano hit the 39 yard field goal. They led 23-17, but Buffalo had one shot left from their 20 with 1:38 to play.


Manuel hit St Johnson for 8, CJ Spiller for 12, Jackson for 14, and St Johnson for 11 again. With 21 seconds left in the game the Bills faced 3rd and 6 at the Carolina 31. Manuel was intercepted, but defensive pass interference instead meant 1st and 10 at the 11. With 6 seconds left, from the 2, Manuel hit St. Johnson for the score. For the seconds eek in a row Carolina suffered a devastating loss while the Bills got the cardiac victory. 24-23 Bills




Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears—Cordarelle Patterson took the opening kickoff 105 yards for a Minnesota touchdown. Devon Hester took the ensuing kickoff 76 yards to set up a one yard touchdown pass from Jay Cutler to Bennett to make it 7-7. Later on Jay Cutler found Brandon Marshall for a 34 yard touchdown to make it 14-7 Bears. Yet the Bears just cannot handle prosperity. Cutler giveth and Cutler taketh away. This time he giveth up a fumble to Robison, who rumbles 61 yards to tie the Bears and Vikings at 14-14.


The deadliest return man in NFL History has done it for the second time this game, breaking a kick return most of the way. This 80 yard return has Chicago starting inside the Minnesota 25. The NFL Hall of Fame has to consider special teams game breakers like Ray Guy, Mel Gray, Steve Tasker and one day Devon Hester. This anti-special teams bias must stop.


Tip Drill! Cutler from inside the 5 throws a wobbler that turns into a volleyball and is eventually intercepted for a touchback. The ball never should have been thrown as Chicago wastes a golden opportunity. Yet then Ponder completed a perfect pass to Jennings. Problem: Jennings plays defense for Chicago. The Bears end up getting their score, only a few plays later than anticipated. Despite the high score 21-14, it is defense and special teams and not offense lighting up the game board.


Very few quarterbacks are as under fire as Christian Ponder. The 20 yard touchdown pass he threw to Kevin Rudolph to tie the Bears 21-21 may get the critics off his back until the third quarter. Cutler brought the Bears right back, but 1st and goal from the Minnesota 2 with 12 seconds left in the half brought 3 incompletions. Chicago settled for a 20 yard field goal and a 24-21 halftime lead.


In the third quarter the Vikings went real ballsy. Yet one play after the gutsiest call of the day, that play is all for naught. Leslie Frazier gambles on 4th and 1 with Minnesota at their own 40. Christian ponder gets the first down but one play later Adrian Peterson fumbles it away.



The Vikings had long drives in the second half but could not convert in the red zone. Brandon Walsh hit field goals of 28, 28, and 22 as the Vikings had a 30-24 lead late. Chicago had one last chance from their own 34 with 3:08 to play.


On 3rd and 4 Cutler hit Marshall for 12 at the 2 minute warning. With 3rd and 1 from the Vikings 39, Cutler hit Marshall again for 10 with one minute to go and then Bennett for 23. With 16 seconds left, on 3rd and 10 from the Minnesota 16, Cutler hit Bennett for the winning touchdown. The Bears have played a couple of heart-stoppers, and they are 2-0 under Marc Trestman and the revitalized Cutler. 31-30 Bears




Washington Redskins at Green Bay Packers—Washington looked awful last week and RGIII did not look like the RGIII from his rookie year. Meanwhile Green Bay lost a tough shootout. Green Bay got on the board first with a field goal and then the Packers faced 4th and 3 at the Washington 35 later on. Mike McCarthy gambled and Aaron Rodgers hit Randall Cobb  for the touchdown to put the Cheeseheads up 10-0.


In the second quarter, Green Bay kept rolling. On 3rd and goal from the 10, Rodgers hit Jordy Nelson for another score as the Packers led 17-0. Rodgers hit Jermichael Finley from 3 yards out to cap a quick 90 yard drive and make it Packers 24-0 at halftime. They almost scored again but fumbled away a touchdown for a touchback in the closest thing resembling a Washington highlight.


In the third quarter Rodgers went back to Nelson for a 50 yard score. Rodgers completed 28 of his first 34 passes and had 377 yards passing and 4 touchdowns midway through the third quarter in a lights out performance.


With the Packers all over Washington 31-0, some people want to declare the Redskins a fraud. The fact is Green Bay really is that good. They have much of the same personnel from their 2010 Super Bowl team and the 2011 team that went 15-1.


Rodgers finished a ridiculous 34 of 42 for 480 yards. After the Redskins cracked the end zone, a 32 yard run by Starks had the Packers up 38-7. They coasted from their as they got to 1-1 and the Redskins remain winless. 38-20 Packers




Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans—Brandon Tate took a handoff 60 yards to set up a one yard touchdown pass from  Matt Schaub to Graham as the Texans quickly took  the 7-0 lead.  Jake Locker moved 80 yards over 14 plays and 7 1/2 minutes for the Titans as a 3rd and goal from the 6 pass to Wright went for the tying touchdown.



Rob Bironas once made 8 field goals in a 38-36 Titans win over the Texans. This time he missed a field goal, saw the Titans defense grab an interception, and got another chance from 47 as the half ended. Bironas hit the second one as the Titans led 10-7 at the break.



A short field in the third quarter saw Matt Schaub hit Owen Daniels for a 12 yard touchdown on 3rd and 6 to make it 14-10 Texans. In the fourth quarter Tennessee faced 2nd and 21 from their own 1, and Chris Johnson got caught for a safety as the Texans led 16-10. Tennessee got it back again at their own 1 and this time Locker came back with a 99 yard drive. A 10 yard touchdown to Walker as the Titans led 17-16. With the Texans facing 3rd and 21 at their own 10, it was Schaub who was intercepted by Verner, who took it 23 yards to the house as the Titans led 24-16 and smelled the upset with 5 minutes left in regulation.



With 3 minutes left the Texans took over at their own 13. Schaub hit Hopkins for 23, 13, and 28. On 3rd and goal from the 1, Arriun Foster banged in just past the 2 minute warning. Foster got the 2 point conversion as the game was now tied 24-24. Tennessee failed to convert on 3rd and 1, and with one minute left Schaub moved the Texans from their 22 to the Tennessee 33. A 51 yard field goal try was blocked, but the Titans jumped offsides. The 46 yard retry bounced off the upright no good, as the game went to overtime.



Houston won the overtime toss and took over at their 22. Schaub hit Graham for 18 and Tate gained 13. On 3rd and 10 from the Titans 26, Schaub went deep to Hopkins for 25. On 3rd and goal from the 3, Schaub hit Hopkins for the touchdown. The Titans are much improved, playing 2 road games and getting a split. Yet the Texans have won both of their games on the final play to get to 2-0 in thrilling fashion. 30-24 Texans, OT




Miami Dolphins at Indianapolis Colts—Miami jumped all over the Colts at the start. Ryan Tannehill moved the ball with ease as an 18 yard touchdown to Mike Wallace had the Dolphins up 7-0. Andrew Luck brought the Colts back but they settled for a 30 yard Adam Vinatieri field goal to get within 7-3. Tannehill then went bombs away, as 80 yards required only 3 plays. A 10 yard Miller run had Miami up 14-3 after the opening quarter.


In the second quarter Indy woke up as Luck moved the Colts 80 yards, hitting Fleener for the 3 yard touchdown. On the next drive 78 yards came rapidly, as Bradshaw took it in from one yard out. The Colts led 17-14 but Miami tied it 17-17 as the half ended when Sturgis drilled a 54 yard field goal.


The second half belonged to the defenses. Adam Vinatieri hit a 38 yard field goal to put the Colts up 20-17. Miami came back with Tannehille hitting Wallace for 20 and again for 34 to set up a one yard touchdown run by Clay. Miami had the 4 point lead with 5 minutes left in the third quarter. The last 20 minutes offered nothing resembling offensive football. Miami fumbled, Luck had it intercepted back with 8 minutes left to play, and the Colts had one last chance from their own 14 with 4 minutes left.


Luck looked like he was ready to pull off the second straight miracle in 2 weeks at home, as the Colts moved to a 1st and 10 at the Miami 23 with 1:50 left. Yet 3 incompletions brought the critical 4th down play, where Luck was sacked. Miami is a very surprising 2-0 while Indy lost in the same dramatic fashion they win last week and last year. 24-20 Dolphins



Dallas Cowboys at Kansas City Chiefs—Alex Smith led the Chief 77 yards on 13 plays and Jamal Charles got in from 2 yards out to make it 7-0 Chiefs. Dan Bailey would kick a 51 yard field goal to get the Cowboys on the board. Later on Tony Romo went deep to Dez Bryant, with the bomb setting up a 2 yard toss to Bryant to have the Cowboys up 10-7.


In the third quarter, Dallas drove deep. Yet on 3rd and goal from the 5, rather than throw to the end zone, play caller Bill Callahan dials up one of those hated West Coast dink and dunk passes. Dallas loses yards and settles for a field goal. On 3rd down you have to throw past the marker. Dallas led 13-7, but those who hate the West Coast Offense had more ammo. Alex Smith would throw a 12 yard touchdown to Dwayne Bowe as the Chiefs led 14-13 entering the final quarter.


Dallas fumbled around midfield and the Chiefs took over at the Dallas 31 to start the fourth quarter. Ryan Succop hit a 40 yard field goal to make it 17-13 Chiefs. Dallas fumbled it away again, but would get the ball back. With 4 minutes left Dan Bailey drilled a 53 yard field goal as the Cowboys trailed by one point. They needed the ball back.


The Chiefs took over at their own 16. With 2 1/2 minutes left the Chiefs faced 3rd and 10 from their 44. Smith threw incomplete, but defensive pass interference meant an automatic first down. Dallas got it back at their own 4 with 16 seconds left. Needing 96 yards, they came up 86 yards short. Walrus Lite Andy Reid has already turned the Chiefs around as they are 2-0. Dallas split their first 2 games, but this was a winnable game they gave away with a late dumb penalty. 17-16 Chiefs




San Diego Chargers at Philadelphia Eagles—Mike McCoy and Chip Kelly both showed they can run high octane offenses last week, although San Diego forgot to play defense in blowing a 21 point lead. Philadelphia nearly blew their 26 point lead but hung on. Nick Novak got the Chargers on the board first with a 49 yard field goal to make it 3-0 San Diego. Philly answered back with their own kick to make it 3-3.


In the second quarter Rivers led an 11 play, 93 yard drive that consumed 6 1/2 minutes. Rivers hit Eddie Royal for the 11 yard score to make it 10-3 Chargers. Novak would tack on a 53 yard field goal and the Chargers led 13-3. Yet after last week, no lead was safe. Vick found Desen Jackson for gains of 17 and 41 and Riley Cooper for the 13 yard touchdown as the Chargers were only down 13-10.


Rivers brought the Chargers right back, and on 2nd and 5 from the Philly 26, Antonio Gates took the ball 24 yards. Yet Gates fumbled at the 2, killing the scoring chance. San Diego got it back, got to 1st and goal at the 9, and fumbled the ball away again. Philly missed their own scoring chance to tie it when Henery missed from 46 as the half expired.


Both Rivers and Vick kept piling on the yards and the points in the second half. Rivers moved the Chargers with ease 80 yards a a 24 yard strike to Eddie Royal had the Chargers up 20-10. Philly came back but had to settle for another field goal try. This time Henery was good from 48 yards out to make it a one score game. When the Eagles got it back, it was time for the home run ball as Vick went deep to Jackson for a 61 yard bomb to tie the game 20-20. At this point, neither quarterback  had been intercepted. The one who turns it over will lose this game, as Rivers and Vick have done many times.



The shootout continued in the fourth quarter. Novak hit a 33 yard field goal to put the Chargers up 23-20. Vick ran it in from 2 yards out to make it 27-23 Eagles. Rivers came right back and hit Royal for a 15 yard score as the Chargers were now back up 30-27. By the time this game would end, Rivers would be 36 of 47 for 419 yards and 3 touchdowns. Vick was 23 of 36 for 428 yard and 2 touchdowns. Neither quarterback was intercepted as Mike McCoy and Chip Kelly knew it would come down to who had the ball last.


The Eagles had 3 minutes left from their own 29. They moved the ball easily, but Chip Kelly this time made a questionable decision with clock management. He wants a quick strike offense, but there comes a time to let the clock run. With 2:09 left and the Eagles with 1st and 10 at the Chargers 14, winding down the clock would have made sense. Instead 3 straight incompletions meant settling for a 32 yard Henery field goal. The game was tied 30-30, but the Chargers still had 1:45 to work with from their 21.


Rivers made it look easy, hitting Antonio Gates for gains of 15 and 21. A 46 yard field goal try by Novak for the win was good. Both these teams played thrillers last week, with reversed results this week to get to 1-1. A rematch of these teams would be well worth the watch. 33-30 Chargers



Detroit Lions at Arizona Cardinals—These teams both have solid offensive firepower, with Matthew Stfford and Carson Palmer getting to throw deep to Calvin “Megatron” Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, respectively. After a scoreless first quarter, both teams got going in the second quarter. Jay Feely hit a 47 yarded to put the Cardinals up 3-0. Stafford went deep to Johnson for a 72 yard touchdown, but Palmer came right back to Ellington for a 36 yard score. Stafford led a 10 play, 92 yard, 5 1/2 drive that ended with him hitting Johnson for a 3 yard score as the Lions led 14-10 at halftime.


The pace slowed considerably in the second half. Stafford fumbled deep in his own territory and the Cardinals had 1st and goal at the 7. They settled for a field goal to trail 14-13. Palmer was intercepted by Levy, who returned it 66 yards for a score as the Lions led 21-13. Feely would hit a 43 yard field goal in the third quarter and a 33 yarded early in the fourth quarter as the Cardinals only trailed 21-19. David Akers came in for a 47 yarded with 9 minutes left for the Lions, but the kick was blocked.


With 4 1/2 minutes to play the Cardinals took over at their own 39. Ellington gained 16 and the Cardinals were on the move. On 3rd and 8 from the Detroit 32 with 2:17 to play, Palmer went deep and drew the pass interference call. Rashaard Mendenhall banged in from one yard out. The 2 point try failed and the Lions had 2 minutes left from their 20. On 4th and 4 Jim Schwartz called a West Coast Offense dink and dunk play. The pass was caught short of the marker. In situations like that the quarterback has to throw past the marker. Padding stats does no good as both teams are now 1-1. Last week the Cardinals let one get away. This week they had a comeback of their own for their first win under Bruce Arians. 25-21 Cardinals


New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers—The Saints are known for Drew Brees and their prolific offense, but it was their defense that saved them last week. The Bucs are known for defense but it was a boneheaded play on defense last week that caused them a last second loss. This game was Buc Ball, in all its ugliness.


Garrett Hartley kicked a 44 yard field goal to make it 3-0 Saints. Josh Freeman hit Ogletree for a 5 yard touchdown to make it 7-3 Buccaneers. Brees went to Graham for a 56 yard touchdown to have the Saints up 10-7 after the opening quarter. The final three quarters were a dreadful slog.


Hartley tacked on a 41 yarded in the third quarter to make it 13-7, but disaster struck the Saints in the fourth quarter. Trying to put the game out of reach, Brees was intercepted by Foster, who returned it 85 yards for a score as the Buccaneers had a 14-13 lead.


With 7 minutes left, Freeman and the Buccaneers took over at their own 14. Freeman led a time consuming drive. With 1:56 left the Bucs faced 3rd and 6 at the Saints 32, with New Orleans out of timeouts. Greg Schiano wisely decided to run the ball to take the time off the clock. Yet Doug Martin gained only 3 yards. a 47 yard field goal try by Ryan Lindell would have made it a 4 point game, but Lindell was no good. The Saints took over at their own 37 with 1:06 to play.


Brees made it look easy. He hit Graham for 15, Darren Sproles for 8, and Marquis Colston for 31 yards. With 5 seconds left, Hartley came in for the 27 yarded to win it. The kick was good, and for the second straight week the Buccaneers lost on a field goal as time expired. The Saints for the second straight week escaped on the final play. This is one example of 2-0 and 0-2 being reversed by one play here and there. 16-14 Saints



Denver Broncos at New York Giants—The Manning Bowl was a shootout for awhile until reality set in. The main problem for the Giants is that they did not finish drives. Josh Brown hit a 36 yard field goal in the first quarter and kicks of 24 and 41 in the second quarter. Knowshon Moreno ran it in from 20 yards out early in the second quarter and Matt Prater hit a 42 yard field goal to have the Broncos up 10-9 at halftime.


Peyton Manning hit Wes Welker for a 2 yard touchdown and the Giants came back with recently reacquired Brandon Jacobs banging in from one yard out as the Giants trailed 17-16 in the third quarter.


After that the Broncos poured it on. Moreno ran for a 25 yard touchdown run as the Broncos led 24-16 after three quarters. Manning hit Thomas for an 11 yard score and Holliday provided the dagger with an 81 yard punt return as the Broncos cruised up 38-16. Eli Manning would throw a 23 yard touchdown pass to Scott but it was far too little too late. Prater added one more field goal to complete the scoring.


Peyton Manning was 30 of 43 for 307 yards and two touchdowns. He will not throw seven touchdowns every week as he did last week, but he still has 0 interceptions. Little brother Eli was 28 of 49 for 362 yards and one touchdown, but 4 interceptions killed the Giants as they fell to 0-2 and Denver won both of their games in blowout fashion. 41-23 Broncos


Jacksonville Jaguars at Oakland Raiders—The loser of this game had a chance to go 0-16. Jacksonville looked lifeless last week while the Raiders lost a heartbreaker on the road in the final seconds. Terrell Pryor has the Raiders gaining some respect and relevance again, while the Jags are a mess. They switched from Blaine Gabbert to Chad Henne in an attempt to spark something. Henne was 25 of 38 for 241 yards and one touchdown. Pryor was only 15 of 24 for 126 yards. Yet Pryor also ran for 50 yards and Darren McFadden added 129 more. Pryor managed the game and did not make the critical mistake.


Marcel Reece ran it in from 11 yards out as the Raiders led 7-0 early on. In the second quarter Josh Scobee kicked a 27 yard field goal to have the Jaguars within 7-3. The rest of the game was a dreadful affair as the Raiders kept driving but remained dysfunctional in the red zone. That was better than the Jaguars, who had nothing to offer at all. Sebastian Janikowski missed a field goal, but then connected from 46, in the second quarter, 30 in the third quarter, and 29 twice in the fourth quarter to make it 19-3 Raiders.


A garbage touchdown with 3 minutes left followed by a failed 2 point conversion should have been the least inspiring end to a game. Instead it came on the final play. Jacksonville faced 3rd and 5 at the Oakland 30 with 16 seconds left. Henne completed a 6 yard pass and got the first down as the clock ran out. The Raiders got to 1-1 as Dennis Allen and the team pumped up its win. However, they beat the worst team in football, and should hold off on the optimism until they get better wins. 19-9 Raiders


San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks—This game was expected to be a defensive barefooted slobberknocker, and these teams on this night were exactly what we thought they were. This game had several delays, first due to weather and then due to an injury after a violent collision. Frank Gore was called for holding in the end zone for a Seattle safety. Colin Kapernick was then hit and fumbled, giving Seattle the ball at the 49ers 29. Seattle settled for a 30 yard Steve Hauschka field goal and a 5-0 halftime lead.


The Seahawks began the third quarter at their 20 and Russell Wilson went deep to Baldwin for a 51 yard gain. Marshawn Lynch ran it in from 14 yards out as the Seahawks built a 12-0 lead. Kaepernick moved the 49ers to the Seattle 3 yard line but no further as they settled for a field goal. Seattle came back but soon faced 3rd and 28 from the Frisco 42 A short pass to set up a field goal turned into 1st and 10 when Aldon Smith committed a dumb personal foul on defense after the play ended. On 3rd and 4 from the 7, Wilson hit Lynch for the touchdown to make it 19-3 early in the fourth quarter. Richard Sherman then intercepted Kaepernick to set up another field goal as Hauschka made it 22-3 Seahawks. Another interception of Kaepernick, this time by Kam Chancellor, was returned to the Frisco 2 yard line. Lynch did the rest to complete the blowout. 29-3 Seahawks


Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers—A 40 yard punt return set up a 44 yard Shawn Suisham field goal and a 3-0 Steelers lead. Red Rifle Andy Dalton went deep to Eifert for a 61 yard gain to set up a 7 yard Bernard run and a 7-3 Bengals lead. Mike Nugent tacked on a 41 yard field goal to make it 10-3 Bengals. With 3 minutes left in the half Big Ben Roethlisberger, on 3rd and 8 from the Pittsburgh 37, went to Emanuel Sanders for gains of 19 and 43. Roethlisberger hit Moye for the one yard score to tie the game 10-10.

In the third quarter Dalton went to Bernard for a 27 yard touchdown and a 17-10 Bengals lead. In the fourth quarter Dalton led a 14 play drive that chewed up 7 minutes of clock. Nugent hit the 25 yard field goal to give the Bengals a 20-10 cushion. With 5 minutes left and the Steelers facing 3rd and 2 from the Cincy 27, Big Ben had his pass deflected and intercepted. It was not pretty but the Bengals got the win as the Pittsburgh offensive misery continued. 20-10 Bengals


Yom Kippur with Aqib Talib

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

Yom Kippur NFL Week 2 football chat: Jets and Patriots should atone for terrible game

Week 2 of the 2013 NFL season is now upon us, and hopefully Sunday will redeem a hideously ugly Thursday. There are 14 games on the docket today and one more on Monday night. We will be chatting about all of these games today.






From the Book of Life to the Walk of Life

Friday, September 13th, 2013

Yom Kippur 2013 is dedicated to legendary Dire Straits guitarist Mark Knopfler.

This Jewish treasure brought us the album “Brothers in Arms,” about the Israeli military and the Jewish quest for peace.

So may he and his family be inscribed in the Book of Life, and may we all one day do the “Walk of Life.”

“After all the violence and the doubletalk, there’s just a song in all the trouble and the strife.”

A peaceful Yom Kippur to everyone and safe and easy fasts for those doing so. May God shine his light on us all.