Wednesday Morning QB (NFL Week 9)

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The NFL season has officially reached the halfway point as the playoff run approaches quickly and teams prepare themselves for the potential to play late in the winter. It is a good landmark for teams to figure out where they stand and what they might need to do in order to find their way into the postseason with the season closing fast. Heading into the season there were plenty of teams that were looked upon as the strongest in the league. That included the defending champions in the Seattle Seahawks who looked like the best team in the league. Unlike many of the defending champions over the years the Seahawks were a team that remained unchanged over the offseason. A few losses highlighted their offseason but their best players and the majority of a great defence that brought the Seahawks to the Super Bowl win last year remained in Seattle. That made them the favourites to take home the Super Bowl and repeat as champions for another year becoming the first team to go back to back since the 2004-05 New England Patriots. The season started out well enough for the Seahawks with a dismantling of another Super Bowl favourite, the Green Bay Packers, in their opening game. It was not as easy the rest of the first half though as the Seahawks have taken losses to the San Diego Chargers, Dallas Cowboys, and St. Louis Rams. They have not looked like the dominant team that many though they could be as they have sunk to a middle of the road team. If they hope to find their way back to the Super Bowl they will need to find that confidence and swagger that carried them to the Super Bowl last year or risk being the latest champions to miss the playoffs in their defending year. Despite the failure of the Seahawks to find their swagger in the first half there is plenty of time to find it and get back on track. While the Seahawks try to find their championship from a few other teams have used the first half of the season to find their own form. As the Seahawks were the team to pick in the NFC it seemed as though this year it was down to two teams in the AFC. Many thought that the Denver Broncos had a shot at another Super Bowl appearance if they could get past the New England Patriots. Both teams were led by legendary quarterbacks and had made improvements over the offseason. The Broncos have been their usual strong selves while the Patriots looked like a Patriots team from a different era. Tom Brady could not find his form early in the season as the Patriots went from contenders for the Super Bowl to a mystery that nobody could solve. Lately though Brady has started anew with an end to the first half of the season that has once again put them as favourites even above the Broncos. Meanwhile in the NFC, taking the place of the Seahawks been a team that nobody expected to be favourites halfway through the season. In the toughest division in the league the division champion has a good shot of moving into the Super Bowl. That is what the Arizona Cardinals are trying to prove this year as they follow in the footsteps of the Seahawks in leading the NFC West. Fairly quietly the Cardinals have a 7-1 record in the first half and, record-wise, are the best team in the NFL. They have done it unspectacularly with no major stats to boast aside from the third ranked rushing defence. Still they are winning games and stand on top of a division that has plenty of contenders. If the season were to end right now, there is no doubt that the favourites would be Arizona and New England. The season is not ending right now and the second half is the time for teams to get back on track while the teams ahead try to stay ahead and end the season on a high note as the season progresses towards the playoff run in the second half.


Fifth Quarter:
(Thoughts on Week 9 in the NFL)

No Jail for Peterson
Adrian Peterson has agreed to a plea deal where he plead no contest to one count of misdemeanor reckless assault that will keep him out of jail and could see him return to the league this year if a team is willing to take a risk on the Pro Bowl running back

McCarthy Sticking Around
Mike McCarthy has led the Packers to a major period of success since joining the team as the head coach in 2006 and his success has been rewarded as he signed a multi-year contract extension keeping him in Green Bay for the foreseeable future

Sanchez to the Rescue
Mark Sanchez was one in a long list of embattled New York quarterbacks and for his lack of results he was left to find a new team and he did going to Philadelphia in the offseason where he proved his worth this week in relief of Nick Foles leading the Eagles to the win

Romo Valuable?
Tony room has been one of the most debated quarterbacks in the NFL as the QB for one of the most popular teams in the world but despite the criticism he is a valuable member of the team which was shown when he was out of their Week 9 matchup



Key Scores:
Philadelphia Eagles 31 – 21 Houston Texans
– It seemed like it was over when Nick Foles left the game but Mark Sanchez came in and proved he still has something left throwing a TD on his second pass of the game and totalling 202 yards to help the Eagles past the Texans

St. Louis Rams 13 – 10 San Francisco 49ers
– With Sam Bradford out the Rams were not considered a competitor in the AFC West and their record shows that they aren’t much of a competitor but they added a win against the 49ers to a win against the Seahawks taking out the top two teams in the division

New England Patriots 43 – 21 Denver Broncos
– It was a matchup between the two of the best quarterbacks in the NFL and Tom Brady took another win in the Manning-Brady rivalry with a dismantling of the Broncos that truly put the Patriots as a favourite in the AFC

Indianapolis Colts 40 – 24 New York Giants
– The Colts made a statement of their own in Week 9 when Andrew Luck had one of the best games of his career in an easy win that showed that the Colts are not a team to look past as the second half of the season begins


Next Week:
Cleveland Browns vs. Cincinnati Bengals (Thursday November 6th; 8:25 pm ET)
– The Browns have shown plenty of improvement this year as they are finally a team that can compete in any week which they will try to do against the Bengals on Thursday Night Football as they try to make a statement

San Francisco 49ers vs. New Orleans Saints (Sunday November 9th; 1:00 pm ET)
– The 49ers and the Saints are not having the seasons that their fans expect with both sitting at .500 and facing off trying to find a spark as they begin the second half of the season looking for a spark

Chicago Bears vs. Green Bay Packers (Sunday November 9th; 8:30 pm ET)
– The oldest rivalry in the NFL continues as they face-off for the second time this year with the Packers taking the first one in a convincing 38-17 win that turned the Packers season around and sent the Bears spiraling

Carolina Panthers vs. Philadelphia Eagles (Monday November 10th; 8:30 pm ET)
– The Eagles will go with Mark Sanchez who will replace an injured Nick Foles as he gets his first start of the season and his first start as a member of the Eagles trying to show that the is the QB many thought he would be when he entered the NFL

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