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23 Oct 2007

Any Given Sunday: Bills over Ravens

by Ned Macey

The Ravens went 13-3 last season, the best regular season record in their young history. Following a desultory performance in the playoffs, they decided to tinker. Their one obvious weakness was an inconsistent ground attack, so they traded for Willis McGahee and let the declining Jamal Lewis depart. McGahee has been an upgrade over Lewis, but following a loss in Buffalo on Sunday, Baltimore has already lost as many games in 2007 as they did in all of 2006. Older players have battled injuries and decline, and the Ravens pass offense has lost any semblance of a vertical component. Maybe even more disturbingly, their own pass defense is far from dominating.

The Bills were a mediocre 7-9 a season ago but did not believe they were one player away. Instead, they let star defensive players Nate Clements and London Fletcher depart in free agency. The young defense was hampered by numerous early season injuries but is starting to find its form.

Despite the rebuilding, the Bills are a few plays away from having a winning record. They are 4-2 after 59 minutes of action, but unfortunately, they are only 2-4 after 60 minutes. They have been slaughtered in road contests against New England and Pittsburgh, but they are highly competitive at home. Most of their success is based on the defense that had its coming out party against Dallas several weeks ago.

A number of young players were impressive on Sunday. Second year safety Donte Whitner made several nice plays slicing into the line on running plays. More encouraging were a couple of huge plays by defensive tackle John McCargo, who stuffed McGahee on two separate occasions. McCargo, a first round pick last season, has been a bit of a disappointment so far but made the two best plays by a Bills' lineman.

The defense showed a propensity for forcing turnovers against Dallas, but their strategy on Sunday was to avoid giving up the big play. That strategy worked perfectly because the Bills were facing Kyle Boller of the Ravens. The Ravens imported Steve McNair last season to be their first above-average quarterback in the Brian Billick era. Unfortunately, McNair is 34 years old and has taken so many hits he plays like he is 54. Predictably, McNair has missed a handful of games this season, opening the door for Boller.

The former first-round pick failed as the starting quarterback between 2003 and 2005. Boller has looked promising in relief appearances both last year and earlier this year. Against Buffalo, however, his limitations were on full display. Boller is quite simply not accurate enough to be a starting quarterback in the NFL.

The Bills had their linebackers take deep drops on passing plays, forcing Boller to throw underneath. Boller's best attribute is his arm strength, and it really is his only NFL-caliber trait. He is unable to hit underneath receivers in stride to allow them to pick up yards after the catch. Boller's receivers average only 3.2 yards after the catch -- that's the lowest figure for any quarterback who has attempted 100 passes.

The problem is not the offense, as receivers catching passes from McNair gain yards after catch at a league-average rate. Furthermore, on passes that travel under five yards, Boller has completed 65 percent of his passes this year, while McNair has completed 82 percent.

The offense's reliance on short passes is extremely troubling. Derrick Mason is a quality possession receiver, but he is averaging an anemic 9.4 yards per reception. Mark Clayton, an emerging talent a season ago, has been invisible because he excels on plays down the field.

The lack of downfield passing has led to ill-advised calls for Boller on a full-time basis. He tantalizes with his arm. His fourth quarter touchdown pass to Derrick Mason was an absolute laser that is as good a throw as will be made in the NFL all season. On the critical last drive, however, Boller had three attempts to complete one yard. All three passes were off target, and the Ravens turned it over on downs.

Of course, the crazy part was that Boller was even attempting three consecutive passes when they only needed one yard. McGahee was supposed to bring a newfound toughness to the running game. He delivered with 114 yards on 19 carries, but he was a bystander on the game-ending sequence. Time was an issue at that point, but they certainly had the opportunity to cash in the first down and spike the ball. The failure to use the new weapon in that position was inexcusable.

Buffalo's defense played exceptionally against Dallas, but was unable to pull out the win because they had no offense. ESPN commentator Tony Kornheiser spent the entire Dallas game praising rookie quarterback Trent Edwards, who was in the process of averaging fewer than eight yards per completion and creating three points of offense.

Edwards looks like a poised quarterback in the pocket in contrast to J.P. Losman, who Edwards has replaced. At this point, looks may be deceiving. Edwards is not actually playing productively at the quarterback position. The play-calling is painfully conservative at times, but Edwards is not effectively moving the chains. On third down, he has only 11 first-down conversions in 34 passing plays, with two interceptions and two sacks. Meanwhile, Losman was a reasonably productive quarterback last season.

Edwards did make a handful of big plays, which would be impressive against previous incarnations of the Baltimore defense. This Baltimore defense is merely mediocre against the pass. The reasons are twofold: struggling cornerbacks and a lack of pass rush.

The most obvious problem is suspect cornerback play from Samari Rolle and Corey Ivy. Top cornerback Chris McAlister missed the game, and his absence was felt. Rolle is past his prime and can get beat in man-to-man coverage. Roscoe Parrish beat Rolle early in the second quarter to draw a pass interference penalty that set up the Bills' second field goal. Ivy was exploited several times late in the game, most notably on a long pass to Lee Evans that set up the Bills final touchdown.

These cornerbacks were there a season ago when the Ravens were the best pass defense in football. The difference is a pass rush that has gone from dominant to pedestrian. The Ravens let Adalius Thomas and his 11 sacks leave in free agency. Maybe they could have survived that loss by itself, but they are also down Trevor Pryce, who has only played two games. The lack of pass rush gives opposing quarterbacks time to complete deep passes against the suspect cornerbacks.

The Ravens are effectively a 4-3 fraud at this point, but the talent is on the roster to turn it around. Their four wins to date have come against teams with a combined six victories. They've won three games by less than a touchdown. They have yet to play a team with a winning record.

The Ravens were built to win this year, and missing the playoffs would be extremely disappointing. With a daunting second half schedule, they will need to play at a much higher level. To get there, they will need the return to health of a number of core players. McNair needs to return, and return healthy enough to pose some threat to defenses down the field. Left tackle Jonathan Ogden has been in and out of the line-up. Productive tight end Todd Heap missed Sunday's game. Right tackle Adam Terry has also missed time. All these players as well as Pryce should return in the next several weeks. They need to recapture a pass rush and a downfield passing attack or they will be embarrassed down the stretch.

Buffalo will spend the rest of the season sorting out its future, most notably at the quarterback position. They will be in a number of games thanks to their improving defense. If Edwards is the future, he should actually start making plays on a consistent basis. The Bills running game was difficult to measure against Baltimore because the Ravens rush defense is still outstanding. Rookie running back Marshawn Lynch ran hard but to little effect against Baltimore. Lynch has had a promising start, if not a magnificent debut like fellow rookie Adrian Peterson.

For the Bills to win, however, they will need to make plays in the passing game. Edwards must get the ball to Evans, their most dangerous offensive player, more consistently. Edwards has some tools, but they need to be careful not to make the same mistake that innumerable teams with young quarterbacks make. These teams have a tendency to project a constant improvement curve, turning the most mediocre performance into cause for hope for the future.

The previous Bills regime made this mistake with Losman. Edwards may or may not be different than Losman, but the Bills cannot just wish him to stardom by admiring his ability to throw checkdowns. They need to make sure he truly is their quarterback of the future.

Each Tuesday in Any Given Sunday, Ned Macey looks at the most surprising result of the previous weekend. The NFL sells itself on the idea that any team can win any given game, but we use these surprises as a tool to explore what trends and subtle aspects of each team are revealed in a single game.

Posted by: Ned Macey on 23 Oct 2007

50 comments, Last at 15 Oct 2012, 9:27am by Eileen


by the K (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:35pm


This seems a little harsh on Trent Edwards. He hasn't exactly set the world on fire, but he's showing promise. There are two main things to remember:

He's a rookie.

He's the only rookie QB having any impact at all this year.

Many rookie QBs take their lumps, and Edwards was hardly thrown into an ideal situation. You can say they can't just wish him to stardom admiring his ability to throw checkdowns, but at least he's throwing and completing those checkdowns regularly rather than forcing a pick or taking a sack by holding the ball too long.

by the K (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:35pm

Oh yeah, forgot to close the tag.


by Mike B in VA (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:48pm

I agree with #1. I watched Losman look bad, bad, bad in his decision making in the early part of the year, and I've seen Edwards twice now make most of the right decisions during the game. They do need to open him up a little more, and he really did almost screw up royally by staring the receiver down on the INT, but Losman still does that, too.

My homer side really wanted Losman to succeed. My rational side says he won't be the long-term answer. So why not play Edwards and find out if he could be?

by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:49pm

Boller is quite simply not accurate enough to be a starting quarterback in the NFL.
It's certainly nice to know Brian Billick has been able to correct the flaw in Boller's game that, oh, just about everybody else saw when Boller was touted as a first round pick.

by Kaveman (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:56pm

Color me a bit disappointed; I'd argue that the 24th ranked team per DVOA beating the 3rd ranked team was more of an upset than 22nd beating 8th. I haven't seen an AGS or EPC on the Broncos in forever. But ah well.

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:56pm

"They do need to open him up a little more, and he really did almost screw up royally by staring the receiver down on the INT, but Losman still does that, too."

I agree. I still don't understand why coaches go to these ultra-conservative playbooks with rookie QBs.

Its a lot tougher to complete the underneath stuff when the defense knows you're not going to try anything.

Rookies are going to make mistakes reading coverages, and dealing with Zones. If Edwards could throw a 20 yard out in college, he can still throw it now. Theres no reason to make him try to thread the needle in the middle of the field.

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 12:57pm

It may just be me, but doesn't it seem a little unfair to compare Boller's completion percentage on short passes to Captain Checkdown's? And really it's only a matter of time before McNair gets his oak leaf.

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:00pm

Re: 5

That crossed my mind too. But really, they're both pretty significant upsets and the Denver/Pittsburgh game was a nationally televised game.

by Sammy (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:10pm

I agree with #5.

This wasn't a particularly surprising result considering the performance of the two teams against high-quality teams. The Bills have been playing better than the Ravens most of the season.

by mmm... sacrilicious (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:17pm

#4: Accuracy reminds me of hitting percentage in Moneyball. It's very difficult to take an inaccurate QB and make him into an accurate QB no matter what the QB's other skills, just as it is difficult to take a poor hitter and make him into a good hitter, even with a "5-tool" player. The best you can realistically hope for is marginal improvement in accuracy - it's probably easier to teach other skills to an accurate QB than teach accuracy to a QB with other skills.

Come to think of it, that Lewin guy might be on to something...

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:23pm

This just seems like bad coaching/gameplanning to me.

Boller's only big strength is he has an absolute cannon. Why are they trying to dink and dunk with him?

by Eric P (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:27pm

re) 11

Poor decision making?

by Tim Kirk (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:38pm

re #5 & #8

Alas here in the UK Denver/Pittsburgh _was_ going to be televised but was pre-empted by baseball reaching game 7...

At least I had no problems with the Gamepass Radio coverage, but would have been nice to see more about the game. It sounded as though Denver finally started turning some drives into TDs and reduced the number of defensive breakdowns without also reducing the number of decent plays as well.

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:39pm

Re: 9

22nd over 8th is still a pretty sizable upset. And like I said, since this wasn't a nationally televised game, alot of people didn't get to see the game (I think most people got Ten/Hou).

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:45pm

Re: 13

I always forget that FO have international readers. But it terms of pure numbers, I have a feeling that waayy more people here saw Denver/Pittsburgh than saw Buffalo/Baltimore.

by Mike B in VA (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 1:50pm

#15 - if I wasn't nominally in Baltimore's market (DC), I would not have seen it. Everywhere south of here got PIT/DEN, I believe.

by centrifuge (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 2:00pm

Pittsburgh's loss to Arizona was already an AGS. Perhaps there's some policy about not repeating teams too often?

by Josh (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 2:18pm

It’s certainly nice to know Brian Billick has been able to correct the flaw in Boller’s game that, oh, just about everybody else saw when Boller was touted as a first round pick.

Hey, he's an offensive genius, what can you expect?

by Jeff (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 2:19pm

Preseason rankings:

Pit 8, Den 14
Bal 4, Buf 21

Records going into Sunday:
Pit 4-1, Den 2-3
Bal 4-2, Buf 1-4

Denver over Pittsburgh was a large upset. But so was Buffalo over Baltimore.

by mawbrew (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 2:39pm

It looks like the Bills have already reached their decision on Losman - he's not 'the guy'. I think he has one more year on his contract and wouldn't be surprised to see him traded this offseason (unless he gets another chance and really impresses).

How many more years will McNair be with the Ravens? My guess is that this is it (barring a big turnaround in the offesnive play). Boller will likely get his last shot to demonstrate starting caliber skills next year (I'm guessing that's why they extended him by just one year).

Maybe the Ravens will trade for Losman?

by Fisher (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 2:57pm

Personally, this is the LAST column I want to see my team in - as winner or loser.

by Mike Lyons (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 3:19pm

I can hardly read this every week now. He rants for 3 pages about the Pats running up the score, and Stat of the Wee No. 2 is about Houston coming back from down 32-7. Does he even read his own columns?

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 3:47pm

Re: 22

Before I respond to anything you just wrote, could you please tell me what the hell are you talking about?

by Israel (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:02pm

#13 writes "Alas here in the UK Denver/Pittsburgh _was_ going to be televised but was pre-empted by baseball reaching game 7…"

Here in Israel, it was preempted by Xtreme something or other.

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:06pm


Wanker, hes talking about TMQ. He posted in the wrong thread.

by tunesmith (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:13pm

Baltimore's four wins were over four of the five worst teams in the league... over at beatpaths, I actually had buffalo favored to beat baltimore.

by James, London (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:25pm


WTF? Have Five got SNF coverage this year? It's all been on SKY so far, and I certainly watched, Pittsburgh @ Denver.

If Five are back, that would be awesome, 'cos I'd be able to can Nick Halling and watch Mike Carlson instead.

by smashmouth football (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:29pm

It pains me to say this, but I think the Ravens will have to blow this team up and start over. As is true with every veteran (i.e., old) team, performance falls off precipitously once it starts to decline. Old players get injured more often, and take longer to heal. The Ravens this year are not as good as last year for one basic reason--their best players are mostly over 30 and on the downhill side of their careers.
That's why I didn't like the McGahee trade. Although I think he's a good player, giving up three draft picks (including 3rd rounders in consecutive years) for a running back is a very short-sighted move, rational only if you can win the Super Bowl right now. Especially when you consider how fungible running backs are.
The sad truth is the Ravens lack a legitimate quarterback, and without a legitimate quarterback, your odds of winning are greatly reduced. I just hope and pray that the front office isn't in denial about all this.

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:33pm


You also had pittsburgh favored over Denver, and Philly over miami, and Tampa bay over detroit.

Even a blind squirrel occasionally finds a nut.

by smashmouth football (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:35pm

One other thing about the Ravens that to me is inexplicable--how could they have entered this season so thin at cornerback?? Beyond McAllister and Rolle (who actually has played decently when not hurt, but was out for several games), the Ravens are woefully lacking at the position. And the Ravens' scheme puts a lot of pressure on their corners, especially with the pass rush depleted by the loss of Trevor Pryce. Unlike the Tampa 2, the Ravens defense does not permit replacement level cornerbacks. No doubt that's one reason a lot of teams have used the Tampa 2 successfully, because it frees up a lot of cap space that could be allocated to other points of need. Like the offense.

by John Gach (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 4:40pm

An astute and absolutely correct analysis of the Ravens, except that Ogden has essentially missed the entire season so far. The OL injuries have forced the Ravens to play with a rookie & second-year OL, with expectable results. Last year the ferocious pass rush more than made up for the secondary's weaknesses, which -- without Pryce and Thomas -- have this year been exposed for all to see. The Ravens have had no pass rush all year.

The most frightening thought for Ravens fans is that they now go from having played the softest schedule to playing the league's toughest schedule for the remaining nine games. Things could get ugly. To have any serious chance for the playoffs the Ravens needed to be no worse than 5-2 and, given the "quality" of their opposition so far, could reasonably have expected to be 6-1 or 7-0, had they played at a level of performance even close to last year's.

One problem that Ned Macey didn't mention has plagued the team all year: penalties (often silly ones such as the four early defensive offside penalties against Buffalo).

Yes, they are at this point definitely a 4-3 fraud. Given the schedule, they will have to play much better even to finish at 7-9. Luckily they play both New England and Indianapolis at home, which might allow them to avoid being completely embarrassed, though the prospect of playing against Brady and Manning with no pass rush and an average secondary does not give much cause for hope.

by Tim Kirk (York, UK) (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 5:08pm

re : #13

Hi James,

According to my digibox Five were due to be showing football, but changed on the evening sometime to show the baseball instead. I think it will be like last year, once the baseball is over they will be showing Sunday Night & monday Night games.

Of course what we really need to do is try to get the BBC to pick up Mike Carlson for their SuperBowl coverage...

by tunesmith (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 5:20pm

re: 29 - beatpaths was 11-3 last week. definitely a better week than average, but we're not exactly last place in king kaufman's panel o' experts, either!

by James, London (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 5:32pm

Thanks Tim.

If Auntie Beeb could get Mike Carlson for the Superbowl, I'd consider my licence fee well spent.

by jonnyblazin (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 6:18pm

As crappily as the Ravens have played, there aren't many teams that can withstand injuries to their starting QB, top 2 offensive tackles, and best reciever and still have a productive offense. If the Patriots had Brady, Light, Kaczur, and Moss injured, there'd be a slight drop off in production, I think.

BTW Clayton's ineffectiveness has been due to a high ankle sprain he suffered during the preseason, Will Carroll point out he was going to start very slowly.

Their defensive struggles are a bit more surprising. Missing Pryce is more important than anyone realized, though his injury (broken wrist) shouldn't linger. What is odd about the pass rush is that Jarrett Johnson has been terrific off the edge, he looks every bit as good as AD at rushing the passer, and better against the run (his coverage skills are mediocre, though). The secondary has been playing poorly all year.

Smashmouth, I don't see the reason why the Ravens need to blow up the team. To be able to sign free agents? The Ravens keep all their draft picks and end up with a few UFAs on their roster as well, its not like vets are clogging the roster. And the McGahee trade was done because the Ravens knew they were going to collect a 3rd and probably 2 5th round compensatory picks for AD, Pashos, and Mughelli. The rookie pool won't allow the Ravens to have tons of picks, you can't pay them all.

by smashmouth football (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 7:51pm

I think the Ravens have to blow up the team because they need to get a LOT younger. Your argument about injuries is only part of the story-Buffalo, for example, has had comparable injuries to the Ravens. Also true that NE has been practically injury-free. But I still maintain that on average, old teams tend to suffer more injuries.

by LynchMob23 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 8:15pm

spotty article, When evaluating a young qb the first thing one would notice, is how efficent they are just taking what the defense gives them. This is a skill that one JP Losman hasn't learned in 4 years. Losman was terrible on 3rd down conversions, and took horrible sacks on 3rd downs that often led to knocking the bills out of fg range. That could've been the difference in several games last season.

As far as Edwards goes. The Ravens up until the Bills game, were near tops in the league in time of posession, a team led by a rookie qb, and rookie rb, basically out Baltibored Baltimore. You could also replace everything you said about Boller, and apply it to Losman. The Bills defense played well, but they were also kept fresh, by a bills offense that had 4 straight scoring drives, and chewed up clock. Yeah Edwards has a ways to go, and may not be the guy. What he's shown as a rookie far surpasses what JP has shown in 4 years.

by jonnyblazin (not verified) :: Tue, 10/23/2007 - 10:29pm

All good teams have veteran players, some get injured and some don't. It just so happens that all of the Ravens older players happened to suffer injuries this year (McNair, Ogden, Pryce, Rolle, Flynn, McCalister), but you can't have a team with nothing but players under 30, it just isn't feasible. All four of the Pats starting LBs are over 30 years old (with Seau as a back up!), how's that working out for them so far?

I'm just not sure what blowing up the roster would accomplish. They should be competitive over the next few years because they have either promising young talent (at OL, WR, and DL) or affordable players in their prime (Scott, Johnson, Heap, Reed, McGahee) at pretty much every position.

I think the DB crew isn't as far along as I'd hoped for them to be, but that can easily be remedied in a single draft.

by db (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 12:16am

37 - The article is worse than spotty, it exposes a major hole in FO's stats data. The numbers as used to evaluate skill players ignore the scheme that they play in. The Ravens, as an example, have run more plays from scrimmage than any other team through 7 games. The dink and dunk is the plan. KC runs a similar scheme and they are #10 in pfs. The idea is to wear down the opposing D and score your points after 50 plays. My numbers show that most of the damage is done after 60 that a D defends. The scheme is not designed to generate big numbers and trying to use stats to evaluate a player without taking that into account scheme doesn't work.

by Podge (Stockport, UK) (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 6:17am


I'd love to see Colin Murray presenting with Mike Carlson and Martin Johnson, plus maybe a player. But with it being BBC no doubt we'll get Gabby Logan, some random celebrities and probably Mark Lawrenson or something.

by JC (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 8:42am

The Bills offensive scheme seems to take very few shots down the field and rely on sustained drives for there scoring. Would a scheme that limits the opportunities for mistakes be the way to go with a rookie quarterback. It seems that the more plays you have to run to score points with a rookie quarterback is a very difficult way to go. By dinking the ball down the field you’re asking a lot of a rookie quarterback.

The Ravens on the other hand truly scare me. After week one and the questionable play calling at the goal line it appears that nothing was learned. Once again we have four straight pass plays for Kyle Boeller to gain a yard. I would hope for the sake of the Ravens fans that should this situation arise again someone will taser Billick and take over the play calling responsibilities.

by Barbrady (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 8:56am

#40 Ye Gods, I can only imagine how bad Lawrenson would be in that situation. He could singlehandedly set back the NFL in the UK cause by years. "Arguably, the Patriots have the best offense in the league. There's no denying that. Wes Welker isn't the tallest of lads, but his height more than makes up for that". Disasterous.

When ITV did the SB a few years ago they got Gabby Logan to front it up, so I'd imagine the Beeb will go with her "experience" in this field. Thankfully they don't employ John "Autocue" Barnes.

by Mike L (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 9:21am

Quite right, that was a TMQ rant. Looks like they don't even link to that anymore.

I am a Bills fan, though (that's why I was reading both at the same time). Really liked what I saw out of Edwards in the preseason. He's staring down his targets a bit too much, but hopefully that will improve over time.

I think you need to be smart to play QB in this league. Losman sounds like a guy who has been around smart people all his life and has heard all these big words and the cadence of their speech, but since he's not smart, he slightly misuses words and doesn't really make much sense when he's speaking. In short, I think he's a dumb guy and he plays like one. I think Edwards has the brains to be a big-time QB and he seems to have as many tools as J.P. so I'm happy with the Bills' move.

I'm also extremely impressed with the moxie shown by the defense.

by Sammy (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 1:14pm

"Quite right, that was a TMQ rant. Looks like they don’t even link to that anymore."

So it is complete. TMQ brought this website out of obscurity and continues to promote it's products, yet FO has chosen to ignore TMQ. Pathetic.

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 1:32pm

Re: 44

You're an idiot. Aaron's already stated that unless they link to something strategically relavent to the NE/Indy game, that they'd like to keep all discussion limited to the thread on the FOMB. Was anything in that article strategically relavent?

by rk (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 2:30pm

39. That sounds like a really awful strategy. What happens if the other team controls the ball and takes a lead. If you only get 60-65 plays, and you're planning on scoring all your points on the last 10-15, you'd better not fall behind. That sounds more like a poor offense than a strategy.

by Sammy (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 5:17pm

45: Regardless of any "policy" Aaron has, the fact that FO has ignored TMQ is true. It's truly sad that this site has no respect for the person that launched it to fame and fortune.

by db (not verified) :: Wed, 10/24/2007 - 6:53pm

46 - RK, it is like the rope a dope that Ali used against Foreman. The D's job is to keep it close and the O's job is to not turn it over and take what is given. FO readers all accept the curse of 370 regarding RBs but have a hard time seeing any other fatigue factors because they are not talked about here. Whole game plans are predicated on wearing out the other side.

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Thu, 10/25/2007 - 12:03pm


The problem is, its not working. The fact that its the scheme doesn't change the fact that it sucks.

47. TMQ hasn't had a decent article in a year. Why the hell should they link to him?

A lot of us never read TMQ before we read FO

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