Monday, December 26, 2011

There Is More Than One Way To Skin A Cat

As I see it, The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have at least 6 major needs, in no specific order: Linebacker that pairs with Mason Foster, Shutdown Cornerback to replace Ronde Barber, #1 Preferably Tall Wide Reciever, Pass Blocking Offensive Tackle, Versatile Offensive Guard, Complementary Running Back.
Other Needs: (Safety Depth, Versatile Fullback)

The Bucs can go SEVERAL different ways in their draft, so they really need somebody that will make decisions by their self. They have to trust Dominik's drafting, because he's generally done a great job of choosing players. Every 1st and 2nd rounder we have selected in the past 3 years has shown the ability to be legit starter in the NFL, except maybe Benn, who has shown great flashes with the ball in his hands. (except when he steps out before it gets there)

Option 1: Buc Ball Route
 "We think that if we have a strong defensive draft, we can become a real NFL defense like we were in the old days. No more worst in anything. A Top half in Passing D, and a Top 20 Rushing D would be a big difference in one year."

1st Round: Claiborne: (6'0, 185, 4.4) (Shutdown Corner, Great Speed, NFL Starter for 10 years) No Claiborne? KirkPatrick: (6'3, 192, 4.46) He shows the toughness that Ronde Barber shows, with ability to blitz the QB and tackle running backs, as well as be a great cover corner.

2nd round: Take a Linebacker. This team cannot stop anyone. Looking at Prospect Background's, this draft seems to have more quality Outside LBs outside the first round, so it looks like Mason Foster will stay at MLB. Here they could take Lavonte David (6'1, 225, 4.55, Tackling Machine and Playmaker quoted as a great fit for Tampa Two) at best. Other available players: Danny Trevathan (6'1, 232,4.56, 5th in nation in tackles) Sean Spence: (6'0, 224, 4.49, leader for U of Miami)

 "Our franchise quarterback will never properly develop if we don't surround him with top offensive talent. We've never dedicated one of our top 2 picks to him since he's been here. We love him, we put our faith in him to lead us to the promise land." 

1st Round: Blackmon: (6'1, 215,4.48, top Wide out in football for 2 years) Kalil: (6'7, 295, 5.01, consensus top OL) Richardson: (5'11, 224, 4.49, proven amazing talent) The Bucs have been trying to get a top pick for the past 9 weeks, and we are not going to ruin it now. Give em the 5th or 6th pick in the draft: Colts will pick Luck, Somebody will get RGIII, and somebody will draft Claibrone. That leaves 3 to be picked. We have a top 6 pick, so at least one of these players will be available. Blackmon allows us to run a 3-4 WR Spread Offense that Freeman thrives in, and gives us a true number one WR. Kalil gives Freeman more time in the pocket. A mobile guy like Freeman can use time in the pocket to destroy opposing defenses. With Kalil on the left and Penn on the right, Freeman would never have anything to worry about. Richardson gives us the best backfield in the NFL. period. Let's face it, Blount is amazing at times, but he needs a compliment. Richardson not only compliments, but turns Blount into the compliment. He will catch out of the backfield with fluid hands, run over defenders, and has breakaway speed.

2nd Round: If they get Blackmon: This pick will be an offensive lineman. Tackle Prospects: Mike Adams: (6'6, 320, might be relegated to right tackle) Nate Potter: (6'6, 295, needs to add strength) Guard Prospects: Kelechi Osmele: (6'5, 347, played tackle in college) Kevin Zeitler: (6'4, 315, played for Wisconsin: somebody must have been making that offense move.) If we get Kalil or Richardson: Look for a Wide Reciever here. Depends on whether they're looking for a burner or a Calvin Johnson type. Notable Prospects: Dwight Jones: (6'4, 225, 4.55, great with YAC) Kendall Wright: (5'10, 190, 4.39, great deep threat) Rueben Randle: (6'4, 208, 4.51, high school phenom doubles as returner and would instantly start at both positions)

Option 3: Best Player Available
 "We can't specifically look for positions, because there are alot of things that we need." 

This strategy works a lot better for teams that have no obvious holes, or in this case, too many obvious holes. Maybe it doesn't require making specific decisions, but if you rank your top 100 players, it will give us the best players we can get for the first three rounds in the draft.There is no way for us to determine what need is more important than the other. We need at least 4 new players (Cornerback, Strong OLB, Weak OLB, Safety) to make our defense playoff worthy, and that will not come in one draft. We need at least 3 new players on our offense (#1 WR, Tackle, Guard) to create a playoff team, and that most likely will take more than one year to create. The gradual approach could help us to be mediocre accross the board next year, which is good enough to be competitive in every game we play.

First things first: The Bucs will need to finish out the season, and find out who will be leading our team next year. After losing 9 in a row, the owners are the only people with job security, and even they are in trouble with ticket sales.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Captain America vs The Mile High Messiah


2nd year. Reserve quarterback. Struggling team. Starter goes out, and this backup engineers an amazing string of victories. True underdog story of Tim Tebow, right? Wrong. Once upon a time, The Patriots were not a powerhouse offense capable of scoring 30 points per game. They weren't equipped with a Hall of Fame quarterback and a super talented recieving core. A decade ago, they were a defensive team starting a guy that nobody expected to succeed. 3 months later, that guy became the youngest QB to ever win a super bowl. Will Tim Tebow be that guy come January? Only time will tell. Until then, the task at hand is more important. For the Broncos: Making the playoffs. For the Patriots: Clenching Home Field Advantage.

These two teams could not possibly be more different from a personnel perspective. New England has a high powered finesse offense, and a historically horrible defense. Denver has a physical, low scoring offense, but a defense capable of keeping any team in the league under 20 points on any given Sunday. Except for the Packers of course, but that's a whole different story.

This clash of styles will be great to watch, but even more exciting will be the ever-amazing Tebow Time. If you haven't heard about it yet, then you need to come out from under the rock you live in, and step into the light. Apparently, it has become a theme in nearly every Broncos' game for the offense to underperform throughout the first three quarters while the defense keeps the score close. During the 4th quarter and Overtime, however, Tim Tebow, AKA The Mile High Messiah engineers comebacks like Montana and does it with Vick-like quickness. In his 8 starts, Tebow is 7-1 with 5 4th Quarter Comebacks, the most of any player in that timespan.

The lesser known story will be that of Tom Brady, Captain America. With 4273 passing yards this season, he is on pace to shatter Dan Marino's record of 5084 yards. In a year where quarterbacks have dominated more than usual, he has carried the Patriots and been one of the best.


The Patriots will come out firing, but the Broncos will play their game stick with them. I don't think its possible to blowout this Bronco team, especially in Denver, because of their effort and intensity. However, there are a number of injuries to watch in the Denver secondary, which will definitely have an impact on the game.

Matchups to Watch

Champ Bailey vs Rob Gronkowski. Seems unlikely at first glance, but the 6'0 Bailey has been locked up with both Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzalez over the last few years and done well. At 6'6 265 lbs, Gronkowski is a different breed than those two. His combination of size, strength, and athleticism make him an unstoppable force.

Broncos WRs vs Patriots DBs. Last week, the Denver Recievers dropped 6 passes in the first three quarters. Missed opportunites like those this week will kill you when you have Tom Brady on the other side of the field. Ironically, the Patriots DBs have been so bad that they are using their wide receivers at both safety positions. Allowing this guy to throw for over 250 yards and 2 touchdowns is not the recipe for success.


Broncos win, 20-17. Tebow will lead yet another 4th quarter comeback. This time, it will be with his legs. And not to mention this guy.

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Rapid Fall of the Chicago Bears: Is There Still Hope?

     The Chicago Bears are having some serious problems. 1 time Pro Bowl QB Jay Cutler is out for another month with a broken thumb on his throwing hand. Matt Forte, league leader in yards from scrimmage through 12 games, is out for a month with an MCL sprain. The backup quarterback, Caleb Hanie, has 6 interceptions in 2 starts. Could things really get any worse?

     Apparently, they can. According to recent reports, these are the top 2 replacement options for the Bears: Donovan McNabb and yes, you guessed it, Brett Favre. Things are falling far and fast for this team, and Lovie Smith is going to have to pull off something amazing to get them back on track. As of now, the Bears (7-5) are 2nd in the NFC North, and tied for the 5th seed in the NFC playoff standings with 2 other teams.
Their last four games:
                                    @Denver (7-5)? LOSS, see Tebow
                                    vs Seattle (5-7)? Possibly a Win, unless Marshawn Lynch is in beast mode
                                   @Green Bay(12-0) LOSS, i mean really, its RODGERS
                                   @Minnesota(2-10) Possibly a win, but not a given against Adrian Peterson.

That means the Bears will finish the season, at best, 9-7, with a strong possibility of 8-8. Hate to say it Bears fans, but if Donovan McNabb is your best option, you are better off hoping for the worst.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Is Tim Tebow the Real Deal?

 Click The Image For Evidence
Conventional wisdom would tell me no. THAT horrible throwing motion says no. Denver's current executive vice president of football operations and greatest Bronco of all time, John Elway, even says no. However, a quick look into the box score from the last 6 weeks says yes. The wins are there. The history is there. The leadership is there. The potential is there. 

Tim Tebow's pre-draft measurables? 6'2 3/4, 236 lbs, 4.71 40 yard dash, 38.5 inch vertical. With that size and athletic ability, quarterback would not be in the top 3 for his best suited positions. Fullback, Tight End, and Linebacker would seemingly suit him much better. The fact is, that is what makes him great. He is able and willing to put his body on the line at any time at the end of the game. He outweighs Michael Vick by 30 pounds, and most larger QBs are not even close to his speed.

No matter what people think of Tebow as a person, love him or hate him, he is a force to be reckoned with in the National Football League.

Down by 4 points. 2 minutes left in the game. 3 timeouts left. What Quarterback are you going to choose?
I'm taking this guy. The worst passer in the NFL is now the hottest QB in the league.