CH Runners

Not Running => The Open Pub => Topic started by: morefoolyou on March 15, 2020, 11:57:35 AM

Title: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on March 15, 2020, 11:57:35 AM (

CBA passed 1,019 to 959.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on March 16, 2020, 12:12:35 PM
Titans use franchise tag on NFL rushing leader Derrick Henry

By TERESA M. WALKER March 16, 2020 GMT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Titans have tagged Derrick Henry as their franchise player, making sure they keep the NFL rushing leader around for at least this season.

The Titans on Monday used the non-exclusive franchise tag on Henry. That means Henry still can receive offers from other teams, with the Titans able to match or receive two first-round draft picks. The franchise tag for a running back is estimated to cost $12.3 million according to

The move comes a day after the franchise agreed to a four-year, $118 million deal with quarterback Ryan Tannehill, keeping the Titans’ top offensive players together.

Henry led the NFL with 1,540 yards rushing on 303 attempts for a 4.8-yard average. He also tied for the league lead with 16 touchdown runs during the regular season with Aaron Jones of Green Bay. He earned his first Pro Bowl appearance.

But the 6-foot-3, 247-pound Henry most showed his value as he ran for at least 100 yards seven times over the final six weeks of the regular season and in three playoff games. Henry became the first to rush for at least 180 yards in three straight games over the regular season or postseason.

He currently ranks third in NFL history averaging 126 yards rushing in the postseason.

This is the first chance for Henry, the 2015 Heisman Trophy winner, at a big contract. He was the Titans’ third pick in the second round at No. 45 overall in 2016, and he is coming off his best season yet.

This is the first time the Titans have used the franchise tag since 2012, when they tagged safety Michael Griffin before agreeing to a five-year contract in June. Before that, tight end Bo Scaife was tagged in 2009 after defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth played under the tag in 2008. The then-Oilers also used the franchise tag on safety Blaine Bishop in 1997.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on March 16, 2020, 12:16:59 PM (

According to Simms, the two teams still in the running to sign Brady are the New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. On Wednesday, it was reported the Bucs were "going all in" to make Brady their new quarterback.

If true, that means we can also cross the Las Vegas Raiders and Los Angeles Chargers off the list. Both teams were rumored to be frontrunners to sign Brady in free agency.

Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on March 16, 2020, 03:51:23 PM
Cowboys put tag on Prescott, clock ticks on deal with Cooper

By SCHUYLER DIXON March 16, 2020 GMT

The Dallas Cowboys have placed their exclusive franchise tag on Dak Prescott, securing the rights to their star quarterback for an estimated $31.5 million while the sides continue working on a long-term deal.

The Cowboys announced the decision on their website about an hour before the deadline for teams to designate the franchise tag.

By using the tag on Prescott, the Cowboys will keep working to get a deal with Amari Cooper as the receiver gets set to become an unrestricted free agent when the new league year starts, currently planned for Wednesday.

The Cowboys and Prescott have been working on a deal for about a year. The two-time Pro Bowler was one of the best bargains in the NFL last season with a base salary of $2 million as a fourth-round pick in 2016.

Prescott was the 2016 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year when he led the Cowboys on a franchise-record 11-game winning streak that vaulted them to the top seed in the NFC before losing to Green Bay in the divisional round.

Dallas made the playoffs again in 2018, with Prescott getting his first wild-card win, before falling short of high expectations by missing the postseason last year. The Cowboys didn’t renew coach Jason Garrett’s contract after the disappointing season and hired Mike McCarthy.

With the NFL’s offseason likely to be altered by the coronavirus pandemic, the Cowboys could have more opportunity to get a long-term deal with Prescott before he misses valuable time working with a mostly new coaching staff.

Prescott has the option of signing the franchise tender and guaranteeing his huge pay increase, but is likely not to sign it to help his leverage in negotiations.

When he was drafted, Prescott was the third-team quarterback behind Tony Romo and Kellen Moore. But preseason injuries to both made Prescott the starter, and Romo never got his job back.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has said repeatedly he considers Prescott his franchise quarterback, and it’s just a matter of time before a deal gets completed.

Dallas traded a first-round pick to Oakland for Cooper during the 2018 season. Cooper finished that year strong and was solid in the first half of 2019 before tailing off as the season progressed.

Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on April 08, 2020, 04:31:44 PM
Brady: It was ‘just time’ to leave Pats for new challenge

By FRED GOODALL April 8, 2020 GMT

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tom Brady entered his final season in New England with a strong inkling that it would be his last with the Patriots.

The six-time Super Bowl champion who signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in free agency last month said Wednesday on SiriusXM’s “The Howard Stern Show” it was “just time” for a change, reiterating he has no hard feelings about coach Bill Belichick not making him a Patriot for life.

“I think he has a lot of loyalty and I think he and I have had a lot of conversations that nobody’s ever been privy to, and nor should they be,” Brady told Stern during a wide-ranging interview lasting more than two hours.

“So many wrong assumptions were made about our relationship, or about how he felt about me. I know genuinely how he feels about me,” the four-time Super Bowl MVP added.

“Now I’m not going to respond to every rumor or assumption that’s made other than what his responsibility as coach is to try to get the best player for the team, not only in the short term, but in the long term as well.”

With Brady and Belichick leading the way, the Patriots won 17 division titles and appeared in nine Super Bowls and 13 AFC championship games over the past 20 years.

Brady, who’ll turn 43 in August, said he entered “unchartered territory as an athlete” when continued to perform at a high level in recent years.

“I was an older athlete, and he started to plan for the future, which is what his responsibility is. And I don’t fault him for that,” Brady said of Belichick. “That’s what he should be doing. That’s what every coach should be doing.”

Brady signed a two-year, $50 million contract with the Bucs last month, joining a team with the worst winning percentage in league history.

Tampa Bay hasn’t made the playoffs since 2007 and doesn’t have a postseason win since its lone Super Bowl championship run 18 years ago.

“I never cared about legacy. ... I never once, when I was in high school, said, ‘Man, I can’t wait for what my football legacy looks like.’ I mean, that’s just not me. That’s not my personality. So why would I choose a different place? It’s because it was just time. I don’t know what to say other than that,” Brady said.

“I had done everything. I accomplished everything I could in two decades with an incredible organization, an incredible group of people. That will never change,” the three-time NFL MVP said. “And no one can ever take that away from me. No one can ever take those experiences or Super Bowl championships away from us.”

Brady also talked about moving his family into a furnished mansion he’s renting from Derek Jeter in Tampa, as well as his marriage to supermodel Gisele Bündchen, trying marijuana and alcohol as a teenager but not enjoying the lifestyle, and his college career at Michigan.

The quarterback also spoke in detail about his decision to skip OTAs in recent years with the Patriots after reading a letter from his wife, who at the time was unhappy with some aspects of their marriage.

“What was important to her, what was important to me was our family and our relationship, and at different times, like any married couple, things need to be changed,” said Brady, who said he kept the letter.

“A couple years ago she didn’t feel like I was doing my part for the family. ... She felt like I would play football all season, and she would take care of the house, and then all of a sudden when that season would end I’d be like: ‘Great, let me get into all my other business activities, let me get into my football training,’ and she’s sitting there going, ‘Well, when are you going to do things for the house? When are you going to take the kids to school?’ Brady said.

“I had to make a big transition in my life to say, ‘I can’t do all the things that I wanted to do for football like I used to,” he added. “I’ve got to take care of things with my family,’ because my family ... the situation wasn’t great. She wasn’t satisfied with our marriage.

Brady was asked several questions about his relationship with Belichick, who selected him in the sixth round of the 2000 draft — No. 199 overall.

The quarterback insisted there has never been a rift between him and the coach over who was most responsible for New England’s success.

“I can’t do his job and he can’t do mine. So the fact that you could say: ‘Would I be successful without him, the same level of success?’ I don’t believe I would have been. But I feel the same in vice-versa as well,” Brady said. “To have him allowed me to be the best I could be. So I’m grateful for that. And I very much believe that he feels the same about me.”

Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: PWWP on April 08, 2020, 04:53:06 PM
I have no interest in sports right now. And I'd be fine if they don't play NFL football in the fall. I'm shocked to say that, but there it is. Hoot, there it is.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on April 08, 2020, 05:00:47 PM
I have no interest in sports right now. And I'd be fine if they don't play NFL football in the fall. I'm shocked to say that, but there it is. Hoot, there it is.

I can't wait for football! I hope the nfl has the forethought to make as many national games be the pats or the bucs - which team will thrive?!?
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: PWWP on April 08, 2020, 05:04:04 PM
I can't wait for football! I hope the nfl has the forethought to make as many national games be the pats or the bucs - which team will thrive?!?

Sport is dead!
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on April 08, 2020, 05:19:18 PM
Sport is dead!

only temporarily... (hope, hope)  :-[
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on May 06, 2020, 06:35:07 AM
Will Belichick overtake Shula for most NFL coaching wins?


MIAMI (AP) — The use of the adjective “winningest” in sports dates at least to the 1930s, when Don Shula was a toddler.

The word came along at the right time as a superlative made for Shula, and described him in headlines after his death Monday  at age 90.

Among the Pro Football Hall of Fame coach’s many achievements, his NFL record 347 victories with the Baltimore Colts and Miami Dolphins stood out.

“The one thing, I think, is the number of wins over the years,” said one of his Hall of Fame quarterbacks, Dan Marino. “To coach for 33 years and do it at a high level like he did it -- you see coaches today and the way they are, they’re amazed by what coach Shula was able to do for so long.”

But the title of winningest coach is in jeopardy. Bill Belichick  easily leads all active coaches with 304 victories in 25 seasons while still going strong with the New England Patriots.

Belichick needs only 44 wins to break the career record, an alarming situation to many fans of the Dolphins and the widely beloved Shula. For them, Belichick falls into the anybody-but-him category.

He’s considered villainous partly because of scandals that have tainted his tenure with the Patriots, and also because his team has dominated the Dolphins, the AFC East and the NFL for two decades.

Shula held Belichick in contempt. In the aftermath of New England’s spying and deflated footballs scandals, Shula referred to Belichick as “Belicheat,” and spoke of the pride he felt regarding his own Dolphins legacy.

“It was always done with a lot of class, and a lot of dignity,” Shula said in 2015. “We didn’t deflate any balls. They all had the right amount of air in them.”

Belichick won’t say so, but unseating Shula might be a driving force that keeps him going at 68. He appreciates football history, and he’s also keen to show he doesn’t need Tom Brady.

But Brady’s departure to Tampa Bay  likely hurts Belichick’s chances to surpass Shula. Belichick has a career record of 249-77 with Brady, and 55-62 without.

Over the past six seasons, the Patriots have won 86 games, 14.3 per year. At that pace, Belichick would pull even with Shula in the 2022 postseason.

But oddsmakers project the Brady-less Patriots will win only nine games in 2020. At that rate every season, Belichick wouldn’t surpass Shula until late 2024, when he would be 72. A season curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic could also slow Belichick’s progress.

There are gauges of greatness other than games won. Patriots fans would point out that Belichick has six Super Bowl titles; Shula had two. Dolphins fans would note that Shula’s 1972 team went 17-0, still the NFL’s only perfect season

The Shula-Belichick relationship goes back decades. Their teams met twice in the early 1990s when Belichick was with the Cleveland Browns, and Shula won both games.

The Dolphins coach also knew Belichick’s father, Steve, a longtime assistant coach at Navy who played in college in Shula’s native Ohio.

Shula retired in January 1996, and Belichick was fired by the Browns a month later. Belichick’s career record at the time was 37-45, but has improved a tad since he became New England’s head coach in 2000.

“Belichick is the closest thing to Shula that exists, even though they go back and forth a little bit,” said Dick Anderson, a safety on Miami’s perfect season team. “Belichick is the closest thing to how Shula coached. His teams don’t make mistakes, they don’t have a lot of penalties and they play as a team.”

That sounds like the sort of tributes being showered upon Shula  this week. One came from Belichick, who issued a statement praising Shula as an all-time great.

“I was fortunate to grow up in Maryland as a fan of the Baltimore Colts who, under coach Shula, were one of the outstanding teams of that era,” Belichick’s statement said. “My first connection to coach Shula was through my father, whose friendship with coach Shula went back to their days in northeast Ohio.”

So there’s a connection, if not a bond. They weren’t close, but they’re getting close on the list of coaching victories. Only George Halas, with 324, stands between Shula and Belichick.

“Records are made to be broken,” Anderson said Tuesday. “Someday another team may go undefeated. I hope I’m not living then.”

And if Belichick does claim the title of winningest coach, Shula won’t be around to see it.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on May 11, 2020, 12:42:44 PM
Barstool vs. Roger Goodell: Dave Portnoy won charity auction, will NFL commissioner allow him into his home? (

Will Roger Goodell watch football with one of his most aggressive and vocal critics? That’s the $250,000 question.

To raise money to combat the affects of COVID-19, Goodell auctioned off the chance to watch a Monday Night Football game with the commissioner in his basement man cave, the same spot he hosted the NFL Draft from last month.

It earned $250,000 but the winner was Dave Portnoy, the controversial founder of Barstool Sports. Portnoy has been personally critical of the NFL commissioner and Barstool helped strengthen its already popular brand in New England attacking Goodell while defending Brady during Deflategate. Portnoy was kicked out of the Super Bowl and banned from NFL Media Night.

(for full story, follow the link...)
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on May 19, 2020, 03:47:06 PM
Brady gathers new Bucs teammates for workout on prep field

May 19, 2020 GMT

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tom Brady isn’t letting the coronavirus pandemic — or NFL rules against players working out at team facilities — keep him from preparing for a new season with his new Tampa Bay team.

Brady gathered some of his new Buccaneers teammates on a high school field early Tuesday for a throwing session. Brady wore a Buccaneers helmet and an orange jersey over his shoulder pads. The informal, players-only workout at Berkeley Preparatory School lasted two hours, according to The Tampa Bay Times.

It’s not unusual for quarterbacks to organize passing workouts before training camp, but the pandemic has changed normal routines. Teams have had to rely on virtual meetings instead of traditional offseason programs as the NFL tries to make plans for a 2020 season, possibly without fans.

Because of the pandemic which has forced social distancing and sheltering at home as the new rules, any gathering of players is notable — especially one involving Brady, a six-time Super Bowl champion with the New England Patriots. Brady, 42, signed a two-year, $50 million contract  with the Bucs in March.

After signing with the Bucs, Brady asked for phone numbers of his teammates. He apparently made use of that list to organize Tuesday’s workout.

It was an encouraging sign for fans on the same day NFL teams began opening facilities to a limited number of personnel. The facilities are still off-limits for coaches and players, except for players undergoing injury rehabilitation.

Center Ryan Jensen practiced shotgun snaps to Brady on the artificial turf football field.

Though he’s the newcomer, Brady was in charge, according to the paper. Brady walked through a route with receiver Mike Evans, demonstrating for the veteran and other players exactly where to make their cuts.

Quarterbacks Blaine Gabbert and Ryan Griffin also threw passes.

Among other players attending the session were receiver Scotty Miller, tight ends Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard and running back Dare Ogunbowale.

Teams cannot organize such workouts, and the Buccaneers did not publicize Tuesday’s session.

There was no immediate reply from the team to a request from The Associated Press for comment on the workout.

Tuesday’s workout went better than Brady’s attempt to work out privately at a Tampa park last month. After he was told by a security guard that the park was closed and he had to leave, Brady received an apology from mayor Jane Castor.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on May 28, 2020, 04:07:44 PM
NFL owners table onside kick alternative proposal

By BARRY WILNER May 28, 2020 GMT

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is hopeful that coaches will be able to return to their team facilities by next week.

Goodell said Thursday following an owners conference call that the virtual offseason is being extended for two more weeks.

NFL owners tabled a proposal that would have offered a fourth-and-15 play as an alternative to the onside kick. They approved testing expanded use of video replay in the preseason to aid in officiating.

Atlanta Falcons President Rich McKay said there were more clubs receptive to the onside kick alternative than in the past and it will be further explored.

“There were lots of really good questions about the impact and nuances” such a change would involve, McKay said. “This was the longest discussion, I imagine 20 to 30 minutes on that. We ended up tabling it after taking a pulse where teams stood on it. We’ll bring it back at some point.”

The 32 owners also increased the number of players who may be designated for return from the injured list during a season from two to three.

Also passed was making permanent the expansion of automatic replay reviews to include scoring plays and turnovers negated by a foul, and any successful or unsuccessful extra points.

The competition committee’s recommendation to expand defenseless player protection to a kickoff or punt returner who is in possession of the ball but has not had time to avoid or ward off contact of an opponent also was approved. McKay said such incidents on punt returns were rare but “there were enough that gave us concern.”

“I think our focus has been and continues to be on protecting our players, particularly those in a defenseless position,” Goodell said. “I think this move just underscores our commitment to taking various unnecessary techniques out of the game to make our games safer for our players.”

Another approved recommendation stops teams from manipulating the game clock by committing multiple dead-ball fouls while the clock is running — an issue that came up several times in 2019, including during the postseason.

Using video replay for pass interference calls was dropped after a one-year experiment that led to more uncertainty than clarity. Many people in the league cited the presence of too much subjectivity in the reviews.

Tabled was a proposal to have a booth judge serve as an eighth official on each crew and call for reviews on certain plays. The league will experiment with additional review options during the preseason as requested by the referee to the replay assistant.

“What we thought we could do in the preseason, this test allows for the ref to have communication with the replay assistant,” McKay explained. “We have always allowed that communication, and now there are more areas given them to seek consultation. We always liked that idea.”

The preseason is scheduled to begin on Aug. 6 with the Pro Football Hall of Fame game between Pittsburgh and Dallas. It’s an uncertainty — as is the NFL’s regular season — because of the coronavirus pandemic. But the league has stated it plans to play everything as scheduled while making contingency plans that could include no fans at games, moving or delaying games.


More AP NFL: and
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on June 07, 2020, 11:24:03 AM
“Over the last several days, we have tried to listen, learn and reflect,” the statement read. "We have been at a loss for the appropriate words, perhaps because there are none to adequately describe the horrific incidents of the last few weeks. It is impossible for us to comprehend what happened to George Floyd or the pain his family must be feeling, a pain that resonates with so many others who have lost loved ones in similar brutalities that were not captured on video for the rest of the world to see. We cannot begin to understand the frustration and fear members of our black community have faced for generations. Recent events have shined a light on a topic that demands much more attention.

"Our country deeply needs healing. We don’t have the answers, but we do know that we want to be a part of the change. As leaders in the New England community, we must speak up. Here is where our family, and our organization, stands:

We are horrified by the acts of racism we've witnessed. We are heartbroken for the families who have lost loved ones, and we are devastated for our communities of color, who are sad, who are exhausted, who are suffering. We know that none of the sadness, exhaustion or suffering is new. We know it is systemic. Our eyes, ears and hearts are open.

Our family has a long history of supporting vulnerable people in our communities and advocating for equality. But past efforts don’t mean anything until we all stand on equal footing in America, so we must act in the present, and not simply rely on what we’ve done in the past. There remains much work to be done. We will not rest on statements, because words without actions are void. Rather, we will work harder than ever before – through our philanthropy, community engagement, advocacy and supporting the work of our players – to build bridges, to promote equality, to stand up for what’s right and to value ALL people." (
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: Sitting Bull on June 09, 2020, 11:37:08 PM
What QB won championships for two different teams and neither team has won a championship since?
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on June 11, 2020, 06:40:09 AM
What QB won championships for two different teams and neither team has won a championship since?

hokay, that worked my brain - maybe because it's early in the morning and the liquid tasty hot juice that makes me not kill people hasn't kicked all the way yet. I enjoyed this.

I had really wanted to with not anyone in the modern NFL, until I remembered the lowlife mannings...

but in the end I used the interwebs for help to confirm I wasn't miss remembering, so you win: (
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: buzzy on June 11, 2020, 10:14:00 AM
What QB won championships for two different teams and neither team has won a championship since?

Peyton Manning popped into my head right away.

morefoolyou showed I was right.


Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: Sitting Bull on June 13, 2020, 03:27:25 PM
I forgot all about Manning. I was referring to Tobin Rote who won in 1957 with the Lions (Bobby Layne was injured) and SD in 1963 before John Hadl took over.  I recently saw the Lions game on youtube and remembered the AFL game.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on June 16, 2020, 06:17:41 AM
I forgot all about Manning. I was referring to Tobin Rote who won in 1957 with the Lions (Bobby Layne was injured) and SD in 1963 before John Hadl took over.  I recently saw the Lions game on youtube and remembered the AFL game.

and from the way, way, way, way back machine...
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on July 28, 2020, 11:04:10 AM
Pats’ Dont’a Hightower opting out of 2020 season

By KYLE (any relation?) HIGHTOWER  July 28, 2020 GMT

BOSTON (AP) — A person familiar with the situation says New England Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower has decided to opt out of the 2020 season.

Hightower’s decision was made out of concern for the health of his fiancée and child, who was born earlier this month, the person said.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the Patriots have not announced the decision.

Hightower has been a staple of New England’s defense since being drafted in the first round in 2012, helping the Patriots win three Super Bowls. The two-time Pro Bowler signed a four-year, $35.5 million contract in 2017. He was scheduled to make an $8 million base salary this season.

His absence is the latest blow to a Patriots linebacking group that saw key contributors Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins and Elandon Roberts leave the team in free agency.

Though NFL veterans can officially begin reporting to training camp Tuesday, the Patriots say their players are not reporting until this upcoming weekend.

As of Monday, the team was awaiting approval of its Infectious Disease Emergency Response plan to help protect its players and staff during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: Jamers on October 06, 2020, 10:22:05 PM
Test test
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on October 07, 2020, 06:45:34 AM
Test test

echo  echo   ec ho     e c h o
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on October 12, 2020, 05:26:26 PM
can we call it?

I'm gonna call it now.

the season is officially a shitshow.

thanks roger.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on October 30, 2020, 06:14:39 AM
Do Not Score! How to avoid touchdowns defenses celebrate

By RALPH D. RUSSO October 30, 2020 GMT

When the defense is celebrating having allowed a touchdown, something has most definitely gone wrong for the offense.

In two games last weekend, one college and one pro, the team with the ball scored when it was the last thing it wanted to do. Against a conceding opponent, whose only hope was to take advantage of a ball carrier’s natural inclination to find the end zone, Penn State and the Atlanta Falcons inadvertently took the bait and ended up losing games they pretty much had wrapped up.

For teams around the country this week, the failures of the Nittany Lions and Falcons could be turned into teachable moments about communication, preparation, and why it can be tricky to ask a player to go against his instincts.

“One of the things coaches do best is learn vicariously,” said former UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel, now an analyst for CBS Sports.

The situations varied a bit for Penn State and the Falcons.

Penn State had a one-point lead and the ball at the Indiana 14 with 1:47 left. On the first play, Indiana backed off and Nittany Lions running back Devyn Ford ran into the end zone, taking a couple of hesitant steps just as he got to the goal line, too late to stop himself. Indiana tied the game on their next possession and won in overtime.

Penn State coach James Franklin said after the game the offense had been made aware it was not supposed to score, but added it was on him if the message did not get across.

The Falcons had the ball at the Lions 10 and were down one with a little over a minute left. They wanted to advance the ball a bit, burn the clock and set up a winning field goal with no time left. Quarterback Matt Ryan told the huddle before the play to not score, but Todd Gurley had too much momentum after breaking through a half-hearted tackle attempt by a Lions defender and barely broke the goal line. The Lions ended up scoring the winning touchdown as time expired.

“Yeah, you talk about those things and you’ve got to be really locked in in the game in those moments, because those are critical decisions at critical times both as players and coaches,” Clemson’s Dabo Swinney said.

It is all about communication. Especially at the college level, where the less experienced players are more likely to get confused because they might never have been in one of these odd scenarios. Plus, in college, coaches don’t have as much time with players to go over rare in-game situations.

Former Auburn coach and current SEC Network analyst Gene Chizik said what happened at the end of the Penn State and Atlanta games are examples of what he calls “atypicals.”

He said he would have his staff give players film cut-ups straight from television broadcasts of unusual scenarios that could come up in pivotal moments of a game. It was a way to prepare players for what they would need to do and how it would be communicated during a tense moment.

“You have to have a system in place to make sure that you are giving the players a heads-up that that’s the situation we’re in,” Chizik said.

Former Georgia and Miami coach Mark Richt said when a team is letting an opponent score to get the ball back, ideally you want to speak directly to your offensive players. Preferably during a timeout instead of signaling in a play.

Most important, of course, is the guy with the ball knows what to do. Richt said in lieu of calling timeout the move would be to send in a running back off the sideline after a clear reminder to be aware of a defense in surrender-mode and to get down before the goal line.

“The most natural thing to do for a running back is to score a touchdown,” said Richt, now with the ACC Network.

Neuheisel said teams should just let the quarterback handle the ball in those situations. The more people involved, the more people that have to be told what to do, the more possibility things can go wrong.

“It’s like playing that game telephone or operator,” he said.

Falcons interim coach Raheem Morris laid blame on himself for Gurley’s touchdown, and offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter said the-get-as-much-as-you-can approach might not be the way to go.

“Maybe instead of not scoring the thing your practice is getting the ball where your kicker wants it and taking a knee,” Koetter said.

Neuheisel said it’s not worth the risk to run a play.

“When you tell them, ‘Get as much as you can without scoring,’ now it’s like you’re telling them to get close to the flame, but don’t touch it,” he said.

One thing is for sure, Chizik said. If a do-not-score situation comes up this week, coaches and players will be better prepared to stay out of the end zone.

“I promise you, across America this week, people worked on that and installed that if previously they had not,” he said.
Title: Re: perpetual NFL thread (the openPub version)…
Post by: morefoolyou on November 23, 2020, 06:21:33 AM
On Football: About those rising NFL teams, never mind.

By BARRY WILNER November 23, 2020 GMT

Mediocrity is mediocrity. You can’t hide it, especially in the NFC East, where being mediocre is a compliment.

This, however, isn’t about those weaklings. It’s about teams many thought might be making moves toward relevance in the standings: New England, Minnesota, San Francisco, Chicago. Maybe even Detroit and Atlanta.

Never mind.

Thanksgiving week is here, which means the stretch run to the playoffs is at hand. Even with the extra wild card in each conference, it’s a pipe dream to rely on those half-dozen teams.

Neither the 49ers (4-6),  the most injury-ravaged team in the NFL, nor the Bears (5-5),  the most offensively inept, played this week. Barring almost inhumanly quick health improvement for San Francisco, it won’t come close to defending its NFC title, particularly in the NFC West, where everyone else decidedly isn’t mediocre.

As for Chicago, it’s not unreasonable to see the Bears go from 5-1 to the bottom of the NFC North, which other than Green Bay decidedly is mediocre.

New England might be the most disappointing of these underperformers, though losing the main reason it won six Super Bowls, Tom Brady, is significant enough to cause a major step backward.

Those who believed the Patriots were progressing after a down-to-the-wire win over the winless Jets and a home victory in nasty weather against a now-slumping Baltimore can’t be buoyed by Sunday’s defeat at Houston. Yes, a Texans club whose only two previous victories were over the second-worst team in the league, Jacksonville.

“It’s disappointing, but we’ll turn the page here and move on,” New England coach Bill Belichick said. “(I) still have a lot of confidence and belief in the team. If we just do things a little bit better, then the results will be different and better. But, I don’t know, we just couldn’t do it today.”

Nor on many other days in a 4-6 campaign.

Then there are the  Vikings, who started 1-5 before they won three straight division games. A home victory over the struggling Cowboys could have established Minnesota’s place in the playoff chase. Instead, inconsistency on both sides of the ball led to an ugly loss.

“There are positives to point to,” quarterback Kirk Cousins said, “but ultimately when you don’t win, you leave the stadium feeling sick to your stomach.”

Indeed, nausea often accompanies mediocrity.

Then there are the Falcons and Lions, really outsiders to join in the postseason chase even before Sunday. Atlanta had won three of four under interim coach Raheem Morris after an 0-5 start. So it lost to a quarterback making his first NFL start, Taysom Hill, and the Saints, in a relative blowout. The Lions were even worse, getting blanked for the first time in 11 years at Carolina, which broke a five-game slide using a QB also in his first NFL start, P.J. Walker.

Hill mainly has been a special-teamer and Walker’s last start was in the XFL.

“We have really good guys here,” embattled Lions coach Matt Patricia said when asked if he feels as though he’s losing the locker room. “We have guys who are fighting every day and working really hard. That’s the one thing – I just love this locker room. These guys are strong; they want to win. They’re trying to compete. They’re trying to do everything right.”

Maybe they are just too mediocre to achieve that.

Also stumbling in Week 11 was Miami, which had won five straight but lost at Denver. The Dolphins’ defense is for real, and they are well coached. But they lack maturity.

That said, they seem much more solid than the collection of current pretenders mentioned above.

Finally, there’s the case of the Cleveland Browns,  who are 7-3 and quite possibly headed to 10 or 11 victories and ending the league’s longest playoff drought — since the Browns’ only such appearance during their reincarnation, in 2002.

Philadelphia, one of those NFC East weaklings, pretty much handed the Browns their win Sunday. Other than taking down Indianapolis before the Colts began their turnaround, Cleveland has beaten the dregs of the NFL: Cincinnati twice, Washington, Dallas, Houston and Philly. None of those teams has won more than three times in 2020. The losses were against Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Las Vegas — all legit.

Ahead for the Browns are Jacksonville, the Giants and Jets, which all should be wins. Plus Tennessee, Pittsburgh and Baltimore, which based on the Browns’ track record, figure to be losses.

So being mediocre just might have its benefits.


More AP NFL: and

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1. Steelers (11-0) Still in the lead for home-field advantage.

2. Chiefs (11-1) Clinched a playoff berth.

3. Bills (8-3) One-game lead in the AFC East.

4. Titans (8-4) Owns the division record tiebreaker over Indianapolis.

5. Browns (9-3) Closing in on a return to the playoffs.

6. Dolphins (8-4) Still a chance in the AFC East.

7. Colts (8-4) Still a chance in AFC South.


8. Raiders (7-5) One game out in the wild card.

9. Ravens (6-5) Currently on the outside looking in.

10. Patriots (6-6) Tough road to a return to the playoffs.

11. Broncos (4-8) An extreme long shot to make the postseason.

12. Texans (4-8) Four games out of the wild card with four games to play.

13. Chargers (3-8) Mathematically eliminated.

14. Bengals (2-8-1) Mathematically eliminated.

15. Jaguars (1-10) Mathematically eliminated.

16. Jets (0-11) Mathematically eliminated.


1. Saints (10-2) First team to clinch a playoff berth

2. Packers (9-3) Big lead in the NFC North.

3. Rams (8-4)  Head-to-head tiebreaker over Seahawks.

4. Giants (5-7) Lead the NFC East.

5. Seahawks (8-4) First in the wild card race.

6. Buccaneers (7-5) Three games behind the Saints in the NFC South.

7. Vikings (6-6) Tiebreaker advantage over the Cardinals.


8. Cardinals (6-6) Struggling as they head into the stretch run.

9. 49ers (5-6) Half a game behind for the wild card.

10. Bears (5-7) One game behind for the wild card.

11. Lions (5-7) One game behind for the wild card.

12. Washington (4-7) Still not out of it in the NFC East.

13. Falcons (4-8) Playing well too little, too late.

14. Panthers (4-8) No realistic chance in the wild card race.

15. Eagles (3-8-1) Still not out of it in the NFC East.

16. Cowboys (3-8) Still not out of it in the NFC East.

NFL Playoff Picture: AFC & NFC standings after Week 13 (before Monday) originally appeared on Pro Football Talk