06 Nov 2006
Every week, Football Outsiders staffers e-mail each other with updates on Sunday's action as it happens. Here's what we were talking about this week:
"Wonderful game called by Terry McAulay's crew so far in Washington. McAulay might want to give Mike Pereira a call regarding the 'ingredients of a hold.' Evidently, the Cowboys do not possess those ingredients."
"The Giants seem to have figured out that Eli shouldn't be allowed to throw the ball more than 10 yards downfield without Burress there serving as a backboard."
"The Dallas safety is a perfect example of why teams should go for it on fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line. Even if you don't get it, you pin your opponents deep and you have a good chance of either a safety or forcing a punt from the end zone."
"Dan Dierdorf just said Rex Grossman will always have the starting job in Chicago 'because he wins.' Wasn't that the exact same reason people gave last year for giving the job to Kyle Orton and keeping Grossman on the bench?" "Haven't you heard? All Damon Huard/David Garrard/Rex Grossman does is win ballgames."
"Larry Johnson is having a field day."
"Tampa Bay's second quarter rally ruined my plans to rake leaves after halftime."
"Are we obliged to argue about Parcells' dcision to go for two early in the game?" "Why argue? Don't we all agree that it was really, really stupid?"
"Tony Romo just threw a bomb to a wide open TO, who had beat the cornerback and safety, and he dropped it. The cornerback, not surprisingly, was Carlos Rogers. The safety wasn't Adam Archuleta because he wasn't even on the field due to his inability to cover anybody."
"There's nothing quite like the reaction in a Philly sports bar after TO drops a pass. Except maybe for the reaction in Indy after Mike Vanderjagt misses a game-winning field goal.
"CBS just broadcast two "g**d**n"s and a "f****n" as Brian Billick stood a little too close to a microphone when he cursed out an official. It's amazing how much more NFL coaches get away with than NBA coaches."
"It looks like the Browns are going with the "death by a thousand Phil Dawson field goals" game plan against the Chargers."
"Is there any more frightening phrase to Steelers fans than 'Santonio Holmes takes it out of the end zone?'"
"That Hines Ward play was a microcosm of the Steelers season. I mean, how could you come away from that play saying 'Hines Ward sucks and the Steelers suck?' Ward made some amazing moves and I think everyone agrees he's a great player. And yet, here we are."
"That taunting call on Troy Brown proves the ridiculous nature of the NFL. What used to be a fun and visceral sport is now a kangaroo court for the benefit of referees who are directed to act like the old cranky lady in your apartment complex. 'Turn it DOWN, you hooligans!!!'"
"Next team I hear 'Tom Brady's favorite receiver is the one who's open,' I take a hostage.
"Today has been the worst accumulation of dunderheaded calls since the 2005 postseason. The lack of public accountability when it comes to officiating is the NFL's black mark."
"The Patriots didn't run the ball enough, their playcalling got too funky, and they outsmarted themselves."
Possibly the closest Super Bowl matchup in history also poses the question: how much does it mean when certain aspects of an NFL team improve dramatically in the second half of the season?