Wednesday Morning QB (NFL Week 6)

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Then there was one as the NFL now only has one undefeated team after the Detroit Lions were beat for the first time this year. The Lions lost to another great team this year, yet one that gets less exposure, as the San Francisco 49ers continued their great season. With the win the niners improved to 5-1 under new head coach Jim Harbaugh and have taken an early lead in the NFC West division. The Lions took the loss and fell one game behind the Green Bay Packers who are the only remaining undefeated team in the NFL. The story of the game however was not the win but the handshake after the game between Jim Harbaugh and Jim Schwartz. After the exciting finish Harbaugh was very excited and ran across the field to do the ceremonial shake of the opposing coach’s hand. When Harbaugh got to Schwartz they shook hands and Harbaugh seemed to almost slap Schwartz on the back and push him out-of-the-way in his excitement. As Harbaugh ran to the locker room Schwartz chased after him and an almost fight ensued with both coaches being separated by players and personnel. The meeting brought a lot of focus to both teams and both coaches as many wanted to know exactly what had set Schwartz off. In the press conferences after the game Jim Schwartz said that during the handshake he heard a curse word that he wasn’t expecting, probably assumed to be directed at him. Jim Harbaugh went to his press conference and said it was his fault because “I shook his hand too hard.” These explanations are not really answering the question as this incident comes down to the new breed of coaches. Both Jim Schwartz and Jim Harbaugh are young coaches that have a bit of cockiness and a lot of intensity while coaching. Both do not like to lose and both love to win and so like any normal competitive person when you shake the hands of your opponent who won and he is still yelling and celebrating the win anything can set you off. With this new breed of coach the NFL is changing as the time of coaches in suits on the sidelines is far gone with the licensed gear required and the time of the coaches just coaching and not talking are also far gone. Coaches are now some of the best people to get a soundbite from and of course there were plenty of coaches in the past that had them, see Ditka, Edwards, or Mora, but the times of Vince Lombardi and Tom Landry are gone. It has been happening for a while but with this new era of coaching the respect that was there is almost gone. It’s not all the coaches fault though as the NFL is one of the most competitive leagues in the world with coaches being fired left and right and having a young coach trying to make his name in the league creates a lot of pressure to perform. If they don’t perform they are just another coach that couldn’t hack it in the NFL like the many before him. With this new era of coaching the question may be asked how long will the handshake last. It has already been avoided by some coaches like Bill Belichick who hates the handshake and has avoided it at times just walking to the locker room. The NFL is always changing and there are always people who are not going to approve but with increased competitiveness the coaches may avoid handshakes altogether ending this type of sportsmanship in the NFL.

With discussion swirling around coaches from last week some of the biggest player news is about the new QBs to start in Week 7. It seems as though 6 weeks became the tryout period for QBs who were trying to show their teams that they were the top guy. For a lot of teams their original decisions proved wrong for them as in week 7 they will move on to a new QB. First in Denver the fans will finally get their wish as Kyle Orton was benched before their bye week in week 6 for their highly touted draft pick Tim Tebow. The Denver organization has refused to claim that Tebow was a starter and some may say that throwing him into the starting position is a way to prove that he is not worth the starting job. That is unless he can turn around the Broncos who have been playing bad football with Kyle Orton under centre. Tebow has the leadership qualities of a starting QB and has the skill but will he be able to manage an entire game in the NFL. It will be an interesting game as Tebow will face off against Miami which will give him an easy transition as the Dolphins have not challenged anyone this year. The Washington Redskins will also change their minds as they had a big QB battle before the season between John Beck and Rex Grossman. Grossman got the start at the beginning of the season but after a big start and a small let down as of late the Redskins decided to switch back to John Beck although there was no real big reason as to why. Both of these QBs are not considered top QBs in the league but one will have to make a case for himself to be the starter as the Redskins are still very much in contention for the playoffs. Minnesota will continue their QB carousel as Donovan McNabb has not worked out as a viable replacement for Brett Favre/Tavaris Jackson and so they will put their backup plan into place. They will start rookie QB Christian Ponder in hopes that he can be the answer to their long-standing QB problem that was solved for a year and a half with Brett Favre. Ponder will have a trial by fire as he will face the undefeated defending champion Green Bay Packers in his first game which could prove to be a great coming out party or a terrible decision that will ruin his confidence. All of these QBs will take over the reigns that they have been waiting for while another QB finally got his wish as Carson Palmer was finally traded by the Cincinnati Bengals. Palmer had stated before the season that he would like to be traded or he would retire and on the NFL trade Deadline the Bengals made his wish come true. They traded him to the Oakland Raiders who were looking for a new QB after Jason Campbell suffered a season ending collar-bone injury. Palmer will most likely start this Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs after a long layoff. There will be a lot of new QBs in the NFL and some familiar faces in new places on week 7. With plenty of QBs to watch it will be interesting to see how they all do in their first games of the season.

 

Standings

American Football Conference

AFC East:

1. New England Patriots (.833)

2. Buffalo Bills (.667)

3. New York Jets (.500)

4. Miami Dolphins (.000)

AFC North:

1. Baltimore Ravens (.800)

2. Cincinnati Bengals (.667)

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (.667)

4. Cleveland Browns (.400)

AFC South:

1. Tennessee Titans (.600)

2. Houston Texans (.500)

3. Jacksonville Jaguars (.167)

4. Indianapolis Colts (.000)

AFC West:

1. San Diego Chargers (.800)

2. Oakland Raiders (.667)

3. Kansas City Chiefs (.400)

4. Denver Broncos (.200)

 

National Football Conference

 

NFC East:

1. New York Giants (.667)

2. Washington Redskins (.600)

3. Dallas Cowboys (.400)

4. Philadelphia Eagles (.333)

NFC North:

1. Green Bay Packers (1.00)

2. Detroit Lions (.833)

3. Chicago Bears (.500)

4. Minnesota Vikings (.167)

NFC South:

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (.667)

2. New Orleans Saints (.667)

3. Atlanta Falcons (.500)

4. Carolina Panthers (.167)

NFC West:

1. San Francisco 49ers (.833)

2. Seattle Seahawks (.400)

3. Arizona Cardinals (.200)

4. St. Louis Rams (.000)

 

POW Awards:

 

American Football Conference

Rashard Mendenhall, RB (AFC Offensive POW)

23 rsh

146 yds

6.3 avg

1 TD

 

Darrelle Revis, CB (AFC Defensive POW)

3 tkl

4 PDef

2 INT

1 TD

 

Jacoby Ford, KR (AFC Special Teams POW)

2 KR

138 yds

101 lng

1 TD

 

National Football Conference

Ahmad Bradshaw, RB (NFC Offensive POW)

26 rsh

104 yds

4 avg

3 TD

 

Kurt Coleman, FS (NFC Defensive POW)

7 tkl

3 PDef

3 INT

0 TD

 

Devin Hester, KR (NFC Special Teams POW)

2 KR

106 yds

98 lng

1 TD

 

Key Scores:

San Francisco 49ers 25 – 19 Detroit Lions

– The Detroit Lions ended their undefeated season against the 49ers who took home their fifth win of the season

 

New England Patriots 20 – 16 Dallas Cowboys

– The Pats continued their strong play on offence against the rested Cowboys with a 20-16 win in the dying seconds of the game

 

Chicago Bears 39 – 10 Minnesota Vikings

– The division rivals faced off with the Bears’ offensive line seemingly better and Donovan McNabb playing what could be his last game this year

 

New York Jets 24 – 6 Miami Dolphins

– The Dolphins tried to get their first win of the season but Rex Ryan and the Jets defence were too much for Miami

 

Key Week 7 Matchups:

Denver Broncos vs. Miami Dolphins (Oct. 23rd; 1:00 pm)

– Tim Tebow will make his first NFL start after sitting on the bench all of last year and the first six-week of this year as everyone will look to see if he is the solution for the Broncos

 

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Oakland Raiders (Oct. 23rd; 4:05 pm)

– The Raiders are playing for their late owner Al Davis and with Carson Palmer now under centre the Raiders season will be an interesting one to watch starting this weekend

 

Indianapolis Colts vs. New Orleans Saints (Oct. 23rd; 8:20 pm)

– The Colts have come close to their first win with Curtis Painter but they may go another week without a win against the Saints

 

Baltimore Ravens vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (Oct. 24th; 8:30 pm)

– The Ravens have been one of the best teams in the NFL this year and they will give rookie QB Blaine Gabbert another rough week

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