Wednesday Morning QB (Week 7)

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The NFL is always a league with some big personalities and most of the time those personalities come out on the field. There is one big personality that is also a part of the NFL dynamics along with the players and the coaches. This is the league commissioner who represents the league and everything that the league is about. In every league the commissioner is the top executive in the league and represents the collective thoughts of the league and the owners. Commissioners make some of the most important decisions for any sport as they have the last say on any rules changes, TV deals, and of course Collective Bargaining Agreements. Many times the commissioner is labeled as the main enemy of the payers and the game itself. There are countless commissioners in North America who constantly seem to make decisions that anger the fans and in some cases damage the sport and the league. These commissioners regularly get booed and are constantly questioned about what they are doing for the sport. One commissioner that never really took the ire of the fans was Roger Goodell who was always considered a fan favorite. Goodell was the latest in a short list of NFL commissioners but one of the only ones to actually make the NFL better without angering the majority of people. He signed some of the biggest TV deals in North American Sport and oversaw a major period of growth for the sport that made the NFL the largest league in North America. Fans and the commissioner enjoyed a long period where everyone got along but this season it all seems to be turning. It all started in 2011 when the NFL suffered a lockout under the watch of Goodell for the typical reasons. The lockout was a long one as they cancelled the first week of the preseason but eventually got a deal done. With a new CBA signed for the next 10 years there would be labour peace in the NFL and Goodell saved his reputation. The 2011 season went on with almost no problems but then the concussion issue crept in when a number of players went down with serious head injuries. The NFL was left scrambling to figure out how to deal with the issue and Goodell was at the forefront. The rumblings began that Goodell didn’t really care about the players and that he wasn’t doing enough to protect his players. The debate continued but eventually died out as the super Bowl approached. The 2012 offseason didn’t do much to help Goodell’s reputation as the Bounty Scandal broke in New Orleans. After the Saints were accused of setting up a bounty system Roger Goodell had to take the next step. The NFL commissioner decided to hand out some of the stiffest punishment in the history of the NFL. Head coach Sean Payton was suspended for the entire season along with Jonathan Vilma while a number of other players received half season suspensions. The decisions were very unpopular especially since there was no real evidence to indicate that the bounty system had actually been established. This started turning fans against Goodell and only added to a number of big issues that Goodell needed to face. A lawsuit against the NFL had claimed that the league had withheld information about concussions putting the players in danger without all of the information. Then the referees went on strike with no deal on the horizon as the NFL prepared to continue on with replacement officials. It has been challenge after challenge for Goodell and he has taken a real shot to his reputation as a great commissioner. His inability to solve the strike before it was too late and the multiple shots to his integrity with the lawsuit and the suspensions have taken their toll on the commissioner. It seems as though this season has been a turning point for the commissioner and he looks to join the fraternity of hated executives. In the NHL it is a tradition to boo Gary Bettman and this year at the Super Bowl, in New Orleans of course, Goodell could see the same welcoming as the fans have begun to turn on him. Goodell is still not as hated as most commissioners but he is one more bad decision away from becoming yet another hated executive as a rough season could get even worse.

 

Four Quarters
(Four Quick Thoughts on Week 6)

 

Baltimore hits more road blocks
The Ravens were looking like they were one of the best teams in the league but a lot of people were not convinced and with injuries to Ray Lewis and a number of other players the Ravens are looking a lot less like a premier team

 

RGII Making a Case for the Top Spot
Robert Griffin II has been the highlight maker this season and for a rookie QB that is saying something as he looks like the best of the five rookie QBs in the league including Andrew Luck who was taken ahead of him in the draft

 

Changing of the Guard in Carolina
Carolina has struggled to get on track after a 2011 season that looked promising and with their second year QB continuing to mop around the Panthers made a move firing Marty Hurney after 9 years and 7 weeks as the Panthers GM

 

Pats Spoiling their Fans
With a close win against the New York Jets in a game they probably should have dominated many people are worried about the Patriots but Tom Brady had other ideas as he claims they spoiled the fans with their play in recent years, and I tend to agree

 

AFC Players of the Week

AFC Offensive POW:
Chris Johnson, RB (Tennessee Titans)
18 rsh
195 yds
10.8 avg
2 TD

 

AFC Defensive POW:
Lamarr Houston, DE (Oakland Raiders)

8 tkl
1.0 sck
0 INT
1 FF

 

AFC Special Teams POW:
Devin McCourty, KR (New England Patriots)

6 ret
199 yds
33.2 avg
1 TD

 

NFC Players of the Week

NFC Offensive POW:
Adrian Peterson, RB (Minnesota Vikings)
23 rsh
153 yds
6.7 avg
1 TD

 

NFC Defensive POW:
Charles Tillman, CB (Chicago Bears)

7 tkl
0 sck
0 INT
2 FF

 

NFC Special Teams POW:
Andy Lee, P (San Francisco 49ers)
5 P
44.6 avg
4 I20
68 lng

 

NFL Standings 

American Football Conference
AFC East:
1. New England Patriots (.571)
2. Miami Dolphins (.500)
3. New York Jets (.429)
4. Buffalo Bills (.429)
AFC North:
1. Baltimore Ravens (.714)
2. Pittsburgh Steelers (.500)
3. Cincinnati Bengals (.429)
4. Cleveland Browns (.143)
AFC South:
1. Houston Texans (.857)
2. Indianapolis Colts (.500)
3. Tennessee Titans (.429)
4. Jacksonville Jaguars (.167)
AFC West:
1. Denver Broncos (.500)
2. San Diego Chargers (.500)
3. Oakland Raiders (.333)
4. Kansas City Chiefs (.167)

 

National Football Conference:
NFC East:
1. New York Giants (.714)
2. Philadelphia Eagles (.500)
3. Dallas Cowboys (.500)
4. Washington Redskins (.429)
NFC North:
1. Chicago Bears (.833)
2. Minnesota Vikings (.714)
3. Green Bay Packers (.571)
4. Detroit Lions (.333)
NFC South:
1. Atlanta Falcons (1.00)
2. New Orleans Saints (.333)
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (.333)
4. Carolina Panthers (.167)
NFC West:
1. San Francisco 49ers (.714)
2. Arizona Cardinals (.571)
3. Seattle Seahawks (.571)
4. St. Louis Rams (.429)

 

Key Scores:
New York Giants 27 – 23 Washington Redskins
– The Giants took the win, their first against their division, but the biggest story in the game was that Robert Griffin III remained one of the best QBs in the league no matter who he takes on earning the respect of everyone including the Giants

 

Houston Texans 43 – 13 Baltimore Ravens
– Two one loss teams faced off in this matchup but it was the Houston Texans coming out on top and exposing the Baltimore Ravens for a team that was not one of the best in the league although the multiple injuries did not help them

 

Indianapolis Colts 17 – 13 Cleveland Browns
– The Browns still only have one win but their games are not what they used to be as they are fighting for every inch and no longer getting blown out as they almost took the win, if not for a dropped TD pass, in front of their new owner

 

New England Patriots 29 – 26 New York Jets (OT)
– It has become one of the best rivalries in recent years and this game did not disappoint as the Jets looked unmatched but still were able to take the Pats to overtime where they were unable to match the field goal to giving the Pats the win

 

Next Week:
Washington Redskins vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (October 28th; 1:00 pm EDT)
– The Robert Griffin show makes its way to Pittsburgh as the rookie QB will once again be in the deep end against the Steelers defence as he gets another chance to prove that he is the best rookie QB in the league

 

New England Patriots vs. St. Louis Rams (October 28th; 1:00 pm EDT)
– The Rams begin their longtime stint as the home team of London, England as they play their first of four games, over the next four years, but it won’t be easy against a scrappy Patriots teams coming off of a big overtime win

 

New York Giants vs. Dallas Cowboys (October 28th; 4:25 pm EDT)
– The Giants won their first division game only this week but they will try to put together two in a row as they take on their longtime rivals the Dallas Cowboys as they look to get some momentum while the Cowboys are looking to climb back into the fight

 

New Orleans Saints vs. Denver Broncos (October 28th; 8:20 pm EDT)
– Another week and another primetime show for the Denver Broncos and Peyton Manning as they take on the New Orleans Saints who are looking like they are just getting back into their flow and looking like their old selves again

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