Nope We’re Just Not Quite There Yet ….
The AFC East is proving all I believe it would be with the exception of the rather mediocre — Miami Dolphins ! However just when I thought they would still be in with a shot of playing their part in the Andrew Luck sweepstakes low and behold Tony Sparano’s players simply upend the Kansas City Chiefs by beating thier AFC opponent 31-3 . In garnering that victory the Miami Dolphins their sole win of the season and pushing their record to 1-7 . The Indianapolis Colts (0-9) now remain the only winless team in the NFL which now places them front and center as the prohibitive favorite for the Stanford Cardinals’ — quarterback .
Slide show for your perusal .
The remaining residents within the AFC East are all tied atop of the division a record of 5-3 but by way of their conference record — Buffalo Bills , New York Jets and New England Patriots . Personally, I am not so sure what to make of the Miami Dolphins as a team because they are so damn awful in so many facets of the game . This Sunday the Dolphins will play hosts to Mike Shanahan’s rapidly declining Washington Redskins . And if ever there was a time for Miami Dolphins to take advantage of an opponent then the Redskins are primed for the taking in the aftermath of their totally embarrassing 19-11 loss to the fast improving — San Francisco 49ers .
In truth , I can honestly say that there have been some awful performances within the league this season as can be borne by the results. And granted , everyone is awe of the Green Bay Packers (8-0) who seem to be hell bent on proving to everyone that they are by far in way the best team in the NFL . Aaron Rodgers appears to be fast running away with the lead as early and prohibitive favorite as the league MVP. If there is a quarterback in the league playing any better than Rodgers at present , then I have yet to witness it . Coach Mike McCarthy’s — team are certainly making everyone sit up and take note their commanding style . The Packers’ destruction of the error prone San Diego Chargers was simply proof of that as they notched up their league leading ninth win of the season in defeating their AFC opponent 45-38 . The margin of victory may well have been larger had the Green Bay Packers had not sought to take their foot off the gas pedal .
Chargers’ quarterback Philip Rivers is definitely having a down year but at present appears to be the least of Norv Turner and his coaching staff’s problems . Injuries asides it has been anomaly of things that has led the San Diego Chargers not meeting the expectations of their fans and in particular a number of NFL analysts , as they uncertainty now encompassing the AFC West . The division itself simply bearing out what I have always felt all along , it simply isn’t as competitive as some would have us believe . The combined records of the four combatants are a combined 15-17 (0.46875). The Kansas City Chiefs (4-3) , Oakland Raiders (4-3) , San Diego Chargers (4-3) jointly hold the lead atop of the AFC West but with the Denver Broncos’ (3-5) improbable win over the Oakland Raiders 38-24 , you simply get the impression that the division is still up for grabs. Would you care to take a guess as to may well come away with the division as its champion ? Not I !
I know that it’s too soon to make prognostications , as there is still a great deal to play for this NFL season . But the biggest surprise for me this year has been to see the rise of Alex Smith and the San Francisco 49ers (7-1) , their surprising start to their season . The Niners’ head coach John Harbaugh has brought about a vitality to this team not seen in a very long time . Smith has been playing at an exceptionally high level and with his confidence being at its peak this team seems intent on making their resurgence one that pays off not just for their fans but also for the organization as a whole. John Harbaugh and his coaching staff have got their players believing in themselves and it has shown in the play of Patrick Willis , Frank Gore and most notably Alex Smith.
Candlestick Park and the Niners will play host to Tom Coughlin’s — New York Giants in an enticing NFC match-up between two first placed teams . Smith if he continues in this vein could end up being the NFL’s Comeback Player of The Year , no mean feat given his predilections previously.
All of a sudden there now seems to be life to the Cincinnati Bengals and that if anything has to be down to the growing confidence and play of Andy Dalton . Barring an almighty meltdown by the team over the remainder of the season coach Marvin Lewis’ job might well have been saved by his rookie quarterback . Many felt that with the departure of Carson Palmer , acquired by the Oakland Raiders in a trade wherein the Bengals obtained (1st round draft pick  & conditional pick 2013) what a number of analysts and fans alike viewed as a rather generous offering . It remains to be seen who will end up benefiting the most from this particular deal. Palmer for his part has struggled for the Raiders whereas , Dalton is well on the way in gaining a deal of recognition. The former TCU (Frogs) quarterback as a rookie has notched himself a record having thrown 12 touchdowns which is one ahead of the record for first year quarterbacks in terms of that specific feat.
The Bengals’ front office led by GM Jim Lippincott and Head of Player Personnel Pete Brown . The organization certainly lucked out in acquiring Andy Dalton in in the 2011 NFL Draft which obviously has paid dividends for the Cincinnati Bengals and their surprising start to the season. It has certainly made a believer out of the much troubled veteran Cedric Benson who seems to be having one of his most productive spells in quite a while .
This Cincinnati Bengals’ ( 6-2) team does seem intent on shaking up the order of things within the AFC North this season. And clearly with there being as only one game separates the top three teams within the division. The hard battling Baltimore Ravens (6-2) share a similar record , followed by the Pittsburgh Steelers (6-3) and bringing up the rear we have the Cleveland Browns (3-5) . From my own perspective because of youthfulness and inexperience in the core of the Bengals’ roster , I do feel that they could very well come up short this season ! But if anything , it should prove to be a positive test as they seek to grow and build upon the organization’s aspirations .
It simply had to happen ! Bill Belichick as he continues his “Mad Scientist” experiments in continually tinkering with the New England Patriots’ — defense . Never mind that at present the team just happens to be one of the worst defensive — units in the NFL . Now comes word that the coach in his infinite wisdom has seen fit to jettison the unconditioned and less than productive Albert Haynesworth . No one at all should be surprised at this but here’s my question for Bill Belichick what in hell made him think he would be the one to work miracles and simply change the change the mindset of this player ? Haynesworth was a bust with the Washington Redskins and he has contributed about as much to the Patriots this season as a dog defecating and urinating on a fire hydrant ! He simply stank up the joint and it is likely to be the same with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers , the player’s latest home on his nomadic journey around the NFL .
Albert Haynesworth has yet to fulfill the monies paid to him , certainly not the $100 million contract so foolishly thrust upon him by the Washington Redskins . Dan Snyder as the owner of the franchise has yet to learn from the numerous mistakes the front office has made since he assumed control of the organization . The Redskins’ owner has squandered money wastefully like a drunken sailor on furlough in search of a high class hooker . In Bangkok and Phuket you tend to get what you pay for and many of the free agent acquisitions and draft picks made by the Washington Redskins have yet to truly pay any dividends .
I understand the Buccaneers’ need to acquire a defensive presence with the loss of Gerald McCoy for the season . But I feel that GM Mark Dominik and head coach Raheem Morris have made a monumental mistake ! Granted, the financial outlay for Albert Haynesworth will be minimal , as he was picked up off waivers but as I alluded to before the player has produced little to show that he would be of any real benefit to this Tampa Buccaneers’ defense or the team in general.
At 4-4 the Buccaneers are seated in third place within the NFC East behind the division leading New Orleans Saints (6-3) , second placed Atlanta Falcons (5-3) and rooted at the bottom are the Carolina Panthers (2-6) . Raheem Morris’ team faces a stern test when they host the Houston Texans this weekend at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa , Florida. Coming off a 27-16 loss to the New Orleans Saints it is imperative that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers get back to winning ways if they are going make inroads into the Saints’ divisional lead. A loss would further hinder their aspirations this season but clearly a victory could put them amongst the mix within conference and division if the chips were to fall their way this Sunday .
One of the things that was definitely prevalent in the divisional loss to the Saints were the needless penalties incurred by the team both on defense and offense . It has been a problematic issue for Raheem Morris and his coaching staff , as it involves many of the young players on the roster . That sort of ill discipline has to be erased and it must be up to seasoned veterans such as Ronde Barber , Kellen Winslow and Jeff Faine to implore their teammates to keep hold their tempers in check . Play aggressively , yes but for God’s don’t do so and give up needless penalties that gives your opponent an advantage . These are the stupid things that has hindered the Buccaneers over the course of their season .
Picture gallery for your perusal .
We have now passed the midpoint of the season and there is still a great deal to play for . But I think we are now getting to the point where a number of teams can be counted out because of their inconsistency and poor play ! It will be interesting to see what the second half of the season holds for the franchises and for the fans in general . Hopefully , we will get to see a number players and clubs meet the expectations rather than falling short of them . What thoughts if any do you have on the points raised within this piece ? By all means do leave a comment and once again thanks for the continued support !
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Picture and slide show details below .
(1) (1) Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel (7) tries to keep Miami Dolphins free safety Tyrone Culver (29) at bay during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, in Kansas City, Mo. The Dolphins would go on to defeat the Chiefs 31-3 to raise their record to 1-7 within the AFC . AP Photo/Charlie Riedel ….
(2) KANSAS CITY, MO – NOVEMBER 06: Running back Reggie Bush (22) of the Miami Dolphins rushes against linebacker Jovan Belcher (59) of the Kansas City Chiefs during the first quarter on November 6, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. Miami defeated Kansas City 31-3. Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images …
(3) Head coach Tony Sparano of the Miami Dolphins yells out some instructions during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs on November 6, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. Miami defeated Kansas City 31-3. Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images ….
(4) (4) San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers stares back at the field as coach Norv Turner, left, walks past after Rivers threw his second interception for a touchdown against the Green Bay Packers during an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, in San Diego. The Packers would go on to defeat the Chargers 45-38 . AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi …
(5) Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, right, and receiver Greg Jennings congratulate each other after connecting on a four yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter of the Packers’ 45-38 victory over the San Diego Chargers in an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, in San Diego. AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi …..
(6) SAN DIEGO – NOVEMBER 6: Quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) of the Green Bay Packers scrambles from the pass rush in the pocket on the 1-yard line during the 4th quarter of the Green Bay Packers vs. the San Diego Chargers NFL Game on November 6, 2011 in San Diego, California. Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images …..
(7) LANDOVER, MD – NOVEMBER 6: Alex Smith (11) of the San Francisco 49ers passes against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on November 6, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images ….
(8) Andy Dalton (14) of the Cincinnati Bengals gives instructions to his team during the NFL game against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on November 6, 2011 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Bengals won 24-17 . Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images ….
(9) Head coach Raheem Morris of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looks on during the game against the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 6, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Saints would defeat the Buccaneers 27-16 . Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images ..
(10) Preston Parker (87) of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers stiff arms Will Herring (53) of the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 6, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images ….
(11) FILE – In this Sept. 1, 2011, file photo, New England Patriots defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth looks on from the sideline during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the New York Giants at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. The Boston Herald is reporting Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011, that the Patriots have released Haynesworth. The move came two days after Haynesworth did not play for most of the second half of Sunday’s 24-20 loss to the New York Giants. The Patriots would not confirm the report. The player has since been acquired off waivers by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers having lost defensive player Gerald McCoy for the remainder of the season . AP Photo/Stew Milne …..
Hot chic pic of the day “Bollywood” actress Neetu Chandra .
Goin’ ol’ skool ……….. Nicole Wray ….. feat’g Missy Eilliott ….” Make It Hot” . Spot the artists that Missy has either written for or co produced with Timbaland .