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Posted on: October 28, 2008 7:56 pm
 

My Top 16 Week 9

 

Before I give you the rankings, I want to point out that it was really, really hard trying to justify spots for the teams in the 10-14 spots and I didn't want to take the cheap way out and have a 5 way tie. I did not drop Green bay or Chicago from my previous rankings as those teams were both on their bye week. Right now I don't think that any team from the AFC West should be in the top 16 but the Broncos are there even though I believe the Ravens deserve to be in the top 16. Still, I think the Ravens are deserving of being mentioned so I have a tie at #16.

 

1. Titans - Indy kept is close and was even winning for a while, but the Titans proved to be too much. Barring somesort of major collapse, the division race is over. The good thing for them is that they also have a 2 game lead for the #1 seed in the AFC playoffs.

2. Giants - I was really, really close to putting them in the #1 spot. Going into PIttsburgh and winning is no easy task. The defense was swarming and Eli Manning didn't make any critical mistakes. Football purists live for this type of game.

3. Steelers - It's really hard to blame them for losing this game. This very well could have been a Super Bowl preview. They were pretty much just one reserve snapper tossing the ball out of the endzone away from possibly winning.

4. Panthers - Now we know how truly important Jake Delhomme is to this offense. He never once looked rattled, and made just one mistake. DeAnglo Williams looked good rushing the ball, and the defense stuffed the run.

5. Redskins - Considering how bad the Lions are, that was a bit too close for comfort, even if it was in Detroit. How amazing is it that Jason Campbell has yet to throw an INT?

6. Bills - I can't really judge them too harshly for losing to a divisional opponent on the roadm but they just let the Patriots right back in to the race for the division.

7 (tie). Patriots - That was a little too close considering the Rams did not have Steven Jackson. I ahve a feeling that game might have gone the other way if he were. Still thoguh a win is a win and the first game against Buffalo got a bit more interesting.

7 (tie).  Buccaneers - Really? All the Bucs could manage against the Dallas D was 3 field goals and 49 yards rushing? I know it was on the road but come on...

9. Cowboys - Even though the beat the Bucs, I do still have them lower than them. I know that once they get Tony Romo back, they could be scary again, but I still can't shake the feeling that when he does come back, it will be too late for the division. With them having to travel the next two weeks (to the Giants and then the Redskins after the bye) this team does not fill me with a lot of confidence. Are they really going with Brooks Bollinger? That's an awful idea, but I guess when the alternative is a 40 year old Brad Johnson.....

10 (tie). Packers - Coming off of the bye they draw the Titans. For some reason, I smell the upset here. I don't know why, but I think the Packers find a way to stay undefeated in the AFC South.

10 (tie). Bears - Coming off of the bye week they draw the Detroit Lions (or as I like to call it, the third bye of the year). On the surface this does have all of the makings of a trap game. The Bears are coming off of an emotional win over the Vikings and have had a week of rest, the game is in Chicago, most of the injured players are healthy again, but something tells me this one will be closer than the match up a few weeks ago in Detroit. I know since then the Lions have put Jon Kitna on the IR, traded Roy Williams to the Cowboys, and still have no offensive line or defense, but stranger things have happened.

12. Eagles - That was a good win over a tough opponent. I just can't get over how good Brian Westbrook is. The man is a beast.

13 (tie). Falcons - Matt Ryan continues to look impressive. That has to be some sort of consolation to Falcons fans. It's not easy going into Lincoln financial and coming up with a win.

13 (tie). Broncos - Like I said at the top of this, I don't generally drop teams if they are on their bye week. To me it's like a player losing their job due to injury. I'm not real high on this team, especially after that goose egg they laid in New England.

15. Saints - They desperately needed that win to stay alive in the division.It's going to be tough, but they still have a chance if Duece McAllister, Charles Grant, and Will Smith win their appeals. If not, Drew Brees will have to keep the Saints in their winning ways by himself until their suspension is over. That's a tough chore for any QB no matter how good Brees is.

16 (tie). Cardinals - They kept it very close against  a very good Carolina team on the road. Kurt Warner made 1 too many mistakes. When you're running back combine for a total of 20 yards and lose a fumble (I am excluding the 30 yard run by Anquan Boldin) you're not going win very many games.

16 (tie). Ravens - This once again goes to further prove my theory, west coast teams do not play well on the east coast, regardless of what time the game is.

Category: NFL
Posted on: October 21, 2008 12:46 pm
 

My Top 16 Week 8

1. Titans - Last week I said this probably isn't really the best team in the NFL. I still feel that way, but a little less so after that spanking of the Chiefs.

2. Giants - That was a little too close for comfort against a bad 49ers team. True one score came on a blocked kick, but still...

3. Steelers - You gotta  love a dominating win on the road against a divisional opponent, even if they are the Bengals.

4. Buccaneers - You gotta like the way Jeff Garcia plays. Who was the genious is San Fran who thought it would be a good idea to get rid of him and TO?

5. Redskins - I feel bad for every team in the NFC East. If you were to spread them around the league, they'd probably all be division leaders right now. It was a tough win, but they still won.

6. Bills - I really cannot wait until November 9th when the travel to New England. That's gonna be a great game.  That was a great win over the Chargers, but part of me wonders if it might have gone the other way around if they had traveled to the West coast instead of vice versa.

7. Panthers - Well, looks like they're back. They got embarassed last week and the poor Saints were the ones they took it out on.

8. Patriots - I don't know how to describe what I saw last night. The scondary looked good (shocker), Matt Cassell looked like a legitimate QB (shocker), and Jay Cutler looked completely and uttlerly confused. Also Bill Belichick actually got the better of Mike Shanahan.

9. Cardinals - We'll find out how good this team really is when they travel to Carolina. My guess is they'll come back down to earth a bit.

10 (tie). Packers - I haven't seen Indy get dominated like that since Week 1. The defense, despite their injuries, were extremely effective in their man coverage forcing Peyton Manning to throw 2 pick 6's. TWO!

10 (tie). Bears - At the beginning of the year if I told you the strength of this team, to this point in the season, was the Kyle Orton and the passing game with a bunch of no name WRs, I would have laughed at you. A lot. This team depserately needs the bye week so hopefully they can get at least one of their starting corners back.

12. Falcons - Coming off of the bye, they have to travel to Philly. If they win there, this team is for real and could fight for a wild card spot.

13. Broncos - I'll give them a mulligan. It's not easy for teams to go to the opposite part of the country and play. Especially if it's New England.

14. Eagles - They need this win, and they need it bad. I personally think they will get it and stay in the divisional hunt.

15. Jaguars - Is it me, or is anyone else not afraid of this team like I was earlier in the season. The offensive line needs to get healthy quick or it may be too late.

16 (tie). Colts - It's this simple, win on Monday night, or the division race is over. O-V-E-R.

16 (tie). Cowboys - Absolutely pathetic. My lord that was a horrible game. But I can't see how it's Wade Phillips fault. Last time I checked, he didn't tell the secondary to fall down or blow coverage. He didn't tell Zach Thomas to not wrap up. He can only do so much. I know people want to see Jason Garrett be the HC, but he needs to get a bit more creative with the game plan. He needs to understand that every pass play does not need to be a 5 or 7 step drop - especially if Brad Johnson is your QB.

16 (tie). Chargers - I'll give them a mulligan for traveling to the other side of the country, but they better get used to it since they now have to travel to the other side of the ocean.

Category: NFL
Posted on: October 14, 2008 10:17 am
Edited on: October 14, 2008 4:54 pm
 

My Top 16 Week 7

This week is going to be tough. Very tough. However as a football fan, you have to be pleased with most of the games over the weeked. Minnesota - Detroit was good, Chicago - Atlanta, Dallas - Arizona, St. Louis - Washington, etc. For the most part they were all good. Any ways, here's week 7.

 

1. Titans - Do I really believe they are the best team in the NFL?No. They have the best defense in my opinon, but the offense is subpar. But you have to respect the record. They move up because the G-Men lost.

2. Giants - We'll call that game an aberration. I haven't seen this team get beat like that in a long time.

3. Bucanneers - Is it me or is the NFC South a lot more competitive than I thought it was going to be. Jeff Garcia is clearly the better QB. Brian Griese needs to sit even will healthy. The question though is will he? That was an impressive win against a good divisional opponent.

4. Redskins - I'll give them a mulligan. They're a much better team than they showed on Sunday.

5. Steelers -

6 (tie). Panthers - Do I blame them for losing in Tampa? No. Tampa's got a pretty good team, but that was embarrasing.

6 (tie). Cardinals - This weekend was filled with a bunch of great games and this was certainly one of them. They nearly lost this one though in the final minutes. If they would not have won, do you think Ken Whisenhunt would get a lot of heat for calling that timeout? I certainly do.

8 (tie). Jaguars - It's not easy to go into Denver and pull out a win. It gets alot easier when your opponent allows 276 Yards passing and 155 yards rushing.

8 (tie).  Colts - Peyton Manning looks like he's back to his old self. That's bad news for the rest of the AFC. That was complete domination of a team that's pretty good defensively. Hopefully Jospeh Addai won't be out for very long, if at all. Although I have to say, I like Mike Hart a lot.

10. Chargers - Whenever they wear the powder blues, good things seem to happen. When was the last time you saw the Patriots get whooped like this? I mean before the Dolphins handed it to them. Give this team a lot of credit.

11. Bills - Coming off of a bye, they have a big task hosting the Chargers. We'll see if this team is for real this week.

12. Saints - They did what they are supposed to do against a bad Raiders team - dominate. JaMarcus Russell looked completely lost. Just out of curiosity, where did that run defense for the Saints come from?

13 (tie). Faclons - That was a great game on Sunday. Matt Ryan looked poised and carried the team on his back. The running game was stagnant accept for one big run from Michael Turner, but Matt Ryan came through in the end. Literally. Is he the next great QB? He certainly looks like it, but we'll see how he adapts now that teams have more fottage on him.

13 (tie) Bears - This game really could have gone either way. I thought this was pay back for the Bears losing two late leads against the NFC South earlier this season. Instead, this was just another late lead given up to the NFC South. Maybe it would help if Charles Tillman and Nathan Vasher could stay healthy for a change. On the brighter side, is it me or is Kyle Orton not half as bad as I thought he was going to be?

15. Eagles - It's hard for me to get excited about a win against the 49ers although traveling to the opposite coast is never an easy task. Just ask the Pats.

16 (tie). Cowboys - Without Tony Romo, this team is in trouble. So they dowb to Brad Johnson (who's 40 and not good) and Brooks Bollinger. Both of whom weren't good enough to stay on the Vikings. I would say they're about a loss away from a Terrell Owens meltdown. With the emergence of the NFC South, I think only two teams from this division will make it to the playoffs. If they lose out before Romo comes back, they'll have an uphill battle to make the playoffs.

16 (tie). Patriots - While they only have 2 losses, they have been ugly, ugly losses. At the beginning of the season I said the Super Bowl Loser curse couldn't possibly touch this team. In my defense, I didn't know Tom Brady would get knocked out for the season in week 1.

Category: NFL
Posted on: October 8, 2008 9:33 am
 

My Top 16 Week 6

1. Giants - The Giants are 4-0 and they are the defending world champions. Bu this is the easy part of their schedule. The next 2 weeks they play the Browns and 49ers. After that it gets a lot more difficult. We'll find out how good this team really is starting week 8.

2. Titans - They did pretty much what I expected from them. Tough defense and a low scoring game.

3. Redskins - That was a huge win on the road against a quality team. Especially a divisional game. Their next three games against the Rams, Browns, and Lions could put them in a very good position for the division or wild card.

4. Panthers - That was complete domination. That's what a good team should do and that's what they did to the Chiefs.

5. Cowboys - If the 'Boys would have lost, how upset do you think TO would have been after getting only two catches? My guess is, pretty bitter. They played a bad team, had a lead, and nearly blew it. There's something wrong here and they need to fix it.

6. Cardinals - This was a close game until about hafway through the third quarter. The defense came up huge and really put this game away. This was a much needed win and probably ended the Seahawks streak of division titles in the NFC West.

7. Broncos - At some point, the running game needs to get better. Jay Cutler is good but he needs some help. The defense needsto improve on their run defense.  They gave up 6.3 yards per carry. This will get them no where in the playoffs.

8. Buccaneers - Tough loss. Tougher losing Brian Griese in this game though. No disrespect to Jeff Garcia, but Brian Griese seems to have pretty good luck against his former teams.

9. Bears - See Panthers above. The Bears dominated this game from the start. This was so bad the Bears didn't even have to play Matt Forte for most of the second half. Kyle Orton looks like he could be for real although it was the Lions they were playing.

10. Bills - Maybe they would have won if Trent Edwards hadn't gotten hurt. Maybe not. They kept it close for a while but ultimately turnovers did them in.

11. Steelers – What a gutsy win on the road against a solid team. And that’s without Rashard Mendenhall and Willie Parker. Most impressive win.

12. Colts - 3 touchdowns in roughly two minutes...wow. I know good teams find a way to win, but this team is perilously close to being 0-4 right now. I really expected a better game out of them after coming off of a bye week. That has to be concerning if I’m a Colts fan.

13. Patriots - At some point, this team is going to have to get better play from their QB. Before Tom Brady comes back next season I mean. I don't believe this defense can hold up over the course of the year.

14. Eagles - 2 tough losses in a row. While there's no shame in losing to either the Bears or the Redskins, the margin for error in this division is extremely small. They have a winnable schedule coming up where they draw the 49ers, Falcons, and Seahawks.

15. Jaguars – That was a tough loss. The Jaguars did everything but win.

16. Falcons – Is this the next team out of the NFC South to surprise us? Matt Ryan looks like the real deal. Any time a team goes into Green Bay and pulls out a victory is huge. Ryan is riding pretty high right now, but I want to see how he handles the lows that will surely come.

Just missed:

Ravens

Saints

Packers

Chargers

Vikings 

Category: NFL
Posted on: August 28, 2008 3:57 pm
 

20 Bold Predictions For the Bears This Season

So it's time for my Annual tradition of making 10 bold predictions for the upcoming Bears season. Here they are in no particular order:

 

20. Rex Grossman will play in three games or more.

19. The Bears rushing offense will be ranked within the top 12 teams.

18. The Bears passing offense will be ranked in the top half of the league.

17. The Bears defense will lead the league on takeaways.

16. Robbie Gould will hit a field goal of 50 yards or more this season.

15. The Bears lose the division race by 2 games but will get a wild card.

14. Alex Brown will have 9+ sacks.

13. Kyle Orton will be in the running for most improved player.

12. Matt Forte will come in third in Rookie of the Year honors behind Darren McFadden and DeSean Jackson.

11. Mike Brown will be named comeback player of the year.

10. The Bears defense will finish in the top 7 in total defense.

9. Mike Brown will still healthy all year long.

8. Kyle Orton will end the season with a QB rating greater than 80.

7. Matt Forte will finish the season with 7 or more rushing touchdowns.

6. Devin Hester will break the all time return TD record this season.

5. Hester will not have more than 400 yards receiving.

4. Mark Bradley will lead the Bears in receiving tuchdowns.

3. Rashied Davis will lead the Bears in receiving yards.

2. Brian Urlacher and Devin Hester will be the only Bears to make the pro bowl. Lance Briggs and Tommie Harris will get snubbed.

1. Rex Grossman will start at some point in the year.

Category: NFL
Tags: Bears
 
Posted on: April 27, 2008 7:23 pm
 

How the draft should have went

First I just have to mention how disgusted I am with the fact that the Bears drafted yet another defensive end. They also drafted another CB which I'm okay with but they really should have taken a QB at some point in the draft. Oh well.

1. Jeff Otah (OT - Pittsburgh) His player profile page  for the NFL combine says he compares to Max Starks and has ideal size and speed to be a left tackle.

2. Brian Brohm (QB - Louisville) - I can believe he fell to the Bears and they didn't take him. That was a dream pick for the Bears and they blew it. So, exactly who are our QBs right now?

3. Matt Forte (RB - Tulane) - I like Forte a lot and I am glad he Bears picked him, but he would have been available in the third and the Bears still get a potential franchise passer.

3. Mario Manningham (WR - Michigan) - It's not that I don't like the Harrison pick, it's that I think the Bears have already gone down one raod with a DT who has an arrest record a mile long, why another one? Manningham has the ability to turn into a legitimate #1 WR.

4. Craig Steltz (SS - LSU) - I like this pick a lot. He's like what the Bears expected Adam Archuleta to be.

5. Roy  Schuening (OG - Oregon State) - The Bears again pick oline but this time on a developmental prospect like they did with Josh Beekman last year.

5. Steve Justice (OC - Wake Forrest) - Olin Kruetz isn't getting younger a Justice is a good developmental project to groom as his replacement.

7. Marcus Griffin (FS - Texas) - The Bears still need depth at free safety.

7. Jeremy Leman (ILB - Illinois) - Who the heck is Joey LaRoque? Sounds like an adult film star name. Leman should absolutely be giventhe chance to make a roster.

7. Jonanthan Zenon (CB - LSU) - Fine Angelo you want a corner? Here you go. At least this one doesn't have a history of injuries.

7. Marcus Monk (WR - Arkansas) - One of the only other picks the Bears made that I actually liked.

Category: NFL
Posted on: April 21, 2008 4:02 pm
 

Last Mock Draft Before the Big Day

Okay. This offseason has been such an utter dissapointment.

Brian Urlacher's unhappy with his contract and is holding out of training camp.

Devin Hester is unhappy with his contract though I hear the Bears are going to talk to his agent today to renegotiate his contract.

Lance Briggs, who hasn't even begun his contract yet, is unhappy with his contract. Keep in mind he JUST FREAKING SIGNED IT!!!!!!

Tommie Harris turned down what would have been a record setting contract for a DT (thanks a lot Al Davis), but he is at least participating in offseason programs.

Robbie Gould is upset with his contract.

We depserately needed oline help and did nothing in free agency to help.

On the bright side we did sign Marty Booker.

 

1. Rashard Mendenhall (RB - Illinois) - Unless Ryan Clady or even Chris Williams or Otah falls here, I don't think the Bears would be willing to take the next best OT, who is probably Cherilus, with the 14th pick. If they can't trade down, they'll take the best available player which is Mendenhall.

2. Anthony Collins (OT - Kansas) - If they don't go OT in round one, they definately take one here. Sam Baker may be available here but Collins definately will be.

3. Oneil Cousins (OT -UTEP) - Bears again go for a tackle here mainly because Chilo Rachal will probably already be off the board and it's not like the Bears don't need a completely new line anyways.

3. Tom Zbikowski (SS - Notre Dame) - I like Tom a lot a t this pick. It's definately about where he should go and the Bears really do need depth at the safety position. Tom will also be able to help out on special teams pretty much right away.

4. Marcus Griffin (FS - Texas) - Griffin's stock has really fallen as of lately and I'm really not sure why. I think he'll be a stud in the NFL.

5. Colt Brennan (QB - Hawaii) - The Bears have 4 QBs targeted in the draft: Joe Flacco, Chad Henne, and Paul Smith frm Tulsa. Flacco and Henne will most likely be gone by the time the Bears pick in the second and they need to go OT there anyways if they don't get on in round one. I know that the Bears were very impressed with Brennan's pro day and it probably moved him back up out of the 7th round.

6. Adarius Bowman (WR - Oklahoma State) - I like him a lot even though he did run a very slow 40 time. He is a classic possesion receiver and runs very good routes which tends to make up for the lack of speed.

7. Jeremy Leman (ILB - Illinois) - I'm glad someone in the national spolight finally gave the kid some respect.....even though it was Prisco.

7. Jonathan Zenon (CB  - LSU) - Pretty decent corner. I say why not. I mean in essence these lsat few picks are pretty much just a jump start in free agency.

7. Barry Booker (DT - Virginia Tech) - Bears need depth at DT and he's probably the best DT left. Works out nicely for both parties.

7. Devin Clark (OT - New Mexico) - The Bears need help on the oline so badly they draft a 3rd OT in the draft just to make sure they get it right.

 

Category: NFL
Tags: Bears, Chicago, Draft, NFL
 
Posted on: April 1, 2008 11:41 am
 

Bears Mock Draft with Compensatory Picks.

Compensatory picks are awesome, especially when you get three of them. I don't so much care that they're in the 7th round, it still give the Bears the option to take Chances on players they wouldn't normally take chances on. I also wanted to say how very sorry I am that Heath Benedict passed away. Many of you who read this blog regularly knew that I was a big fan of Heath and I send my most sincere condolences to his family.

With that being said, here's the last mock draft I'll make before the draft.

 

1. Rashard Mendenhall (RB - Illinios) - So reports out of Chicago indicates that Cedric Benson's rehab is not going according to schedule and that he's lost a step. It's funny cause it's not like he was a bolt of lightning to being with. The Bears desperately need a top tier running back. Mendenhall has the running style of Benson but has better hands, more heart, faster, and just an all around better dude.

2. Sam Baker (OT - USC) - Once Baker was projected as a first round pick. Now he falls to the second. Perfect! Kind of a blessing in disguise seeing as how the Bears really, really, really, need  top tier running back. Did I mention that Cedric Benson has actually LOST A STEP?!?!?!?

3. Chilo Rachal (OG - USC) Should help the learning curve with him and Baker having played together in college. The Bears also need depth at the gaurd position in case either Beekman or Garza get hurt. In a few years he could be a quality starter.

3. Red Bryant (DT - Texas A&M) - I struggled with this pick. A lot. I know DT isn't the biggest area of concern but with RB and the oline situation squared away, it's time to start looking at the defense.

4. Jamar Adams (SS - Michigan) - Some people want Tom Zbikowski. Me? I view him as a slower version of Adam Archuleta. To me Adams is the safe pick for a SS.

5. Marcus Griffin (FS - Texas) - I really believe that he will be the steal of the draft if he falls this far. The Bears need depth at the safet position badly and I think he's the best FS in the draft after Kenny Phillips.

6. Colt Brennan (QB - Hawaii) - Everyone keeps talking about how bad the Bears QBs are. I don't happen to agree which is why  I have the Bears taking one in the 6th round. Rex Grossman in the 8 games he played last season was sacked 25 times. He had no running game to help him out. What other QB besides Peyton Manning and Tom Brady would have thrived in this situation? But the Bers do now need a third QB and someone to groom while Rex and Orton battle it out in training camp. As far as this pick goes, why not tacke a chance here in the seventh round. What do the Bears really have to lose? A 6th round pick? With all of his NCAA records, I'll take that gamble.

7. Adrian Arrington (WR - Michigan) - I honeslty think he can be better than Mario Manningham eventually. He probably would have been a higher pick if he would have waited to enter the draft.

7. Devone Bess (WR - Hawaii) It would be nice to get a receiver who is comfortable with Colt Brennan and I think Bess could actually turn into a fine receiver. He's in a similar situation with Arrington above as he too is leaving early.  He reminds me of a shorter, more sure handed Bernard Berrian

7. Barry Booker (DT - Virginia Tech) - at 6'4" 284 lb, he's a little undersized for a DT but he's also pretty fast and could be a good contributor on special teams.

7. Jeremy Leman (LB - Illinois) - He may not be the biggest LB, he may not even be the fastest, but he has heart, character, and he's one of the smartest players in the draft. He could replace Brendon Ayanbadejo very nicely on special teams.

 

Category: NFL
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com