NFL15 Cherry Picks W10: Cat’s Meow

12 Nov

Eating Crow Down at the Watershed

You might not think it, but crow’s not all that bad. Tastes kinda’ like…chicken.

A little gamey, and that road-kill diet they ingest, not…too…appetizing (eek), but you gotta’ do what you gotta’ do, right, if you’re gamer. When it’s time, dig in.

This writer fed on a plate of the caw cuisine after predicting Pack would devour the Panthers in Week 9 action and leave North Carolina with victory in hand.

.....Rivera.6.10.11.R.Paraglide.wc.thmBut the Cats proved me and a few others wrong in whoopin’ the perennial juggernaut, 37-29, sealing the deal early with a killer quarter (24-2Q), looking a true playoff contender in 2015, at home (GB) and on the road (SEA).

And what of reigning MVP man, Aaron Rodgers (25-48, 369, 4-1i)? So “The Beatles” had a couple bad songs (“(AR) having a bad day…is kinda’ like a bad Beatles song”). On that, Hey Jude rates NHRA (drags) and Revolution 9 pure sound-collage, oh my gosh.

But the Fab Four were game-changers and had more hits in one year than 98% of bands will record in a life-time. All meaning, Rodgers is game for alot more chart-busters before it‘s all through. That’s a certainty.

.....Newton.9.28.14.wc.K.Allison.thmAnd Camster-the-Hamster (15-30, 297, 3-1i), he’s still scrambling’ up field (9-57, 1t) but made his connections (air) when needed, due in no small measure to a seasons-long, stout Carolina O-line (13sk (8g)) that stymied GB’s pressure (0sk) long enough to give the 5y QB time to breath, while his counter-part was hurried & harried (5sk).

One should wonder if this win could be the watershed event in the Rivera – Newton – Kuechly era, catapulting Cats into a better bracket and be sign that championship hardware is on the not too distant horizon?

Better not bank on it.

I’m not buying into Carolina, not yet. That last part is called covering yourself.

....Kuechly.1.28.14.Sgt.A.Martinez.wc.thmTeam ranks at midway are good, just outside top-ten in key defensive measures (#13 yapg / 11 papg) and in or hovering near T10 on that side of the ball that’s been their weaker half, offense (#12 ypg / 4 ppg). Of Cats eight Ws, only GB currently has winning mark (SEA / IND .500) but they came through a tough stretch in W6-9 with flying colors, besting both NFC’s 2014 top dogs (GB-SEA), though both at BofA.

The remaining slate will test their mettle.

Majority of Carolina’s contests are roadies with five consecutively against what can be called formidable foes, including three intra-divisionals: @ DAL, @ NO, ATL, @ NYG, @ ATL. Cats want Super respect? They’ve gotta’ keep earning it.

A few bumps in the road wouldn’t hurt, handle some adversity before vesting heavily and do-or-dies (PS) come into play. Same goes for Cincy, one of three remaining perfectos. The Patriots, they’ve proven their worth and then some. When they’re undefeated there’s little doubt about their juggernitiousness.

If Ron & Co. get through the formidable five (11.26 – 12.27) no worse than 3-2, vesting-in-full could be in order. Oh yeah, and don’t overlook the closer (TB): Never embark the post-season off a loss. Mood matters.

MVP Watch

1) Tom Brady
2) Andy Dalton
...Brady.8.28.09.K.Allison.wc.thm.DC3) Aaron Rodgers
4) Julio Jones
5) NaVorro Bowman
6) D’Qwell Jackson
7) Reshad Jones
8) Telvin Smith
9) Cam Newton
10) Steve Gostkowski

Good Spot (W9)

Antonio Brown

The Pittsburgh end and 3-time Pro Bowler had a $100,000 game v. Oakland (17r-284y – 2c-22y). There are more than a few NFL offensive rosterees that take a paycheck in similar amount and total those numbers for an entire season.

Marcus Mariota

Titans’ rookie QB comes off a 2-week injury-out to lead his team to an OT win in New Orleans (28-39, 371, 4t), running the final drive like a seasoned vet, going 6-6, the last a 5-yard loft to Tony Fasano for the game-winning TD. It’s a wow.

Bad Spot

“They have a (DC) with a history. I’ll leave it at that (NFLN / 11.8).”

....Zimmer.9.20.14.wc.MN-NG.thmComment made by Vikings’ head coach Mike Zimmer and directed at Rams’ DC, Gregg Williams, in post-game presser following Vikes OT win over STL (21-18) where their quarterback Ted Bridgewater was knocked unconscious in a run – slide in what was reported by some an a dirty hit by STL safety Lamarcus Joyner.

I’ll trust in NFL’s assessment of film, whether validating the UR flag on Joyner or over-turning (looks possible). But there’s one certainty from this unfortunate play: We cannot expect defenders to anticipate slides during play or tailor tackles when QBs initiate a slide five yards or less prior to contact, not at those speeds.

And don’t forget, Mike, Adrian has a “history,” too. Old wounds (Bountygate) are not to be ‘opened’ with acrimony unless new, damning evidence comes to light or a ‘repeat performance’ has been established. It’s all part of giving second-chances, a new life that most everyone deserves at least once in their lives.


Curious Quote

“I take full responsibility for this frustration and the inaction that has occurred. Use my resignation to heal and start talking again (“University” / SI.Wire / 11.9).” Words of Tim Wolfe, former President of the University of Missouri.

The reports of campus racism, attendant university policies and threat of football boycott aside, it’s nice to see someone “take…responsibility” in action (“resignation”), not simply words, even if his was merely a matter of timing and golden parachute (K) / peer-support (new gig) likely lets Tim down easy. Such statement today (“(ITFR)”) too often has no serious ramification for speakers, self-imposed or otherwise.

And like that NFL defender who can’t be expected to change course ‘on a dime,’ neither can US government, as part-time regulator of our greed and corruption, can’t be expected to prevent, find and punish purveyors of all prejudicial expressions. What they can do is create a system of redress and an environment where ignorant, mean-spirited people don’t feel at ease and, in rare case, might even find courage to grow.


Cherry Picks Week 10

Bills (4-4) @ Jets (5-3): 11.12 NFLN 8:25: NYJ wins
Dallas (2-6) @ TB (3-5): 11.15 Fox 1:00: Dallas wins
Cats (8-0) @ Titans (2-6): Fox 1:00 (GTW): TEN wins
Chicago (3-5) @ St. Louis (4-4): Fox 1:00: Bears win
Saints (4-5) @ Redskins (3-5): Fox 1:00: NO wins
Miami (3-5) @ Philadelphia (4-4): CBS 1:00: Eagles win
Cleveland (2-7) @ Pittsburgh (5-4): CBS 1:00: Pitt wins
Jaguars (2-6) @ Ravens (2-6): CBS 1:00: Baltimore wins
Minnesota (6-2) @ Raiders (4-4): Fox 4:05: Oakland wins
New England (8-0) @ NY Giants (5-4): CBS 4:25: Pats win
Kansas City (3-5) @ Denver (7-1): CBS 4:25: Broncos win
Cards (6-2) @ Seattle (4-4): NBC 8:30 (GTW2): AZ wins

Record: 41 – 45

Steven Keys
NFL HunchLine
Photo credit: C.Newton, wc.cca, 9.28.14, K.Allison; R.Rivera, 6.10.11, wc, R.Paraglide; L.Kuechly, wc, 1.28.14, Sgt-A.Martinez; T.Brady, wc, K.Allison, 8.28.08, DC; M.Zimmer, 9.20.14, MN-NG, wc; cherries-ripe, Chirak, 6.24.7, wc; NFL-symbol, wikiproject.
Posted: 11.12.15 @ 2:17pm; Copyright © 2015


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