Friday, October 23, 2009

NFL Visions, Part 2


San Francisco 49ers, 3-2
They became the trendy pick to have an unexpectedly good season after opening the year with two divisional wins. But after a 45-10 drubbing by the Falcons, they're suddenly looking quite vulnerable. Not to mention QB Shaun Hill has thrown for over 200 yards exactly once this season. The Niners are dependent on Frank Gore and the running game, so his injury really took its toll. Gore will be ready for their upcoming game against the Texans after having a bye week to recover, so Sunday's game should provide a good gauge of where San Fran truly stands.

Miami Dolphins, 2-3
Their win over the Jets in Week 5 kept their season alive. And while they used the Wildcat to run all over Rex Ryan's defense, Michigan product Chad Henne also threw for 241 yards. If they want to stay in it for the long haul, they're going to have to come with their best effort starting this Sunday--on deck for the Dolphins are the Saints, Jets and Patriots. Ouch.

Houston Texans, 3-3
It's fitting that they've alternated wins and losses en route to an even record, because it seems like they're always in the six to nine win range--not good enough, but still a dangerous team to line up against on Sunday. The Bengals discovered that first hand when Matt Schaub (sixth-highest QB rating in the NFL) scorched them for 392 yards.


Tennessee Titans, 0-6
That has to be a typo, right? No, it doesn't, and here are some numbers from Sunday's game that are also impossible to believe:
  • 59-0
  • The Titans had -7 passing yards against the Pats. They are the first team since the merger to finish a game with negative passing yards. They completed two passes--one for 15 yards, one for -22.
  • Passer ratings of the two starting QBs: Tom Brady: 152.8; Kerry Collins: 4.9. For good measure, Vince Young entered the game late and finished with a rating of 0.0.
  • Tennessee fumbled six times and threw two interceptions.
Wow. I mean ... wow.

Washington Redskins, 2-4
I mentioned it earlier this week, but the only reason they have two wins is because they played the Rams and Bucs. They've also managed to lose to four previously winless teams. I was in Washington, D.C. when they lost to the Lions, and also this past Sunday when they lost to the Chiefs. There's something absolutely hilarious about watching a pathetic football team at a bar crowded with fans of said team. They're so bad that fans aren't even sure whether to cheer when something good happens since they know the next play is bound to result in one or more of the following:
  • a fumble
  • an interception
  • Albert Haynesworth twisting his ankle while accidentally stepping on coach Jim Zorn's foot, who consequently falls sideways into his assistant coach, who knocks over the offensive coordinator, and so on and so forth in a domino effect until eventually the entire Redskins team is collapsed on the sideline, which would no doubt produce the first glimmer of hope this entire season for Washingtonians as they contemplate the possibility that their team will be allowed to forfeit the remainder of the games on their schedule

During the game against the Lions--which was quite possibly the ugliest football game played on American soil since the collapse of the XFL--one bar patron kept talking about 'Skins owner Dan Snyder and how he's met him and done radio shows with him. I forget everything he said about him, but I'm positive the words "a**hole," "motherfu**er," and "Nazi" were involved. All the other Redskins fans at the bar seemed to be unfazed and in complete agreement.

And during the game against the Chiefs, there were some technical difficulties with the broadcast at one point, during which the big screen switched to the Ravens-Vikings game. There was a palpable sense of relief in the bar. It's hard for fans to watch the team because a) it's not a pretty sight, and b) they're all half-secretly rooting for the team to lose so that the whole thing can get blown up. I'm talking ownership change, coaching change, new QB, the whole shebang. I'm honestly not sure what's worse right now, being a Nationals fan or a Redskins fan.

I'll leave you with this stat: the Redskins have rushed into the correct end zone twice on the season, matching the number of times they've had a player tackled in their own end zone for a safety.

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