Is it just me or can you picture Pete Carroll eating fruit snacks, drinking chocolate milk, and sleeping in a race car bed? Don’t get me wrong, I love the guy – his constant whooping seems genuine, and I dig his video game play-calling style, but I can’t shake the impression that he’s really just a kid who put a token in a carnival game and woke up the following morning as a 40-year old man.
Some other observations from Week 4…
-If you put your trust in Jay Cutler on draft day, you should have known an abomination like Sunday would happen at some point. Comedian Louis C.K. once said (and I’m paraphrasing here), “every crap I take is an emergency.” And that’s kind of the way Cutler looked in the first three games – like if he didn’t get the pass off immediately, something very bad was going to happen. That kind of urgency is a necessity in a Mike Martz offense, and against New York, for whatever reason, it was missing from Cutler’s game, and he ended up with soiled pants because of it. Lesson learned. Hopefully. With Carolina, Seattle, Washington, and Buffalo next up on the schedule, not only would I NOT bench Cutler, but I’d be actively trying to separate him from his panicky owner if you have a need at QB.
Glass Half Empty Side Note: Cutler’s a mercurial head case even on his best days, and after being debased and defiled as an unwilling participant in the Giants sack orgy, he may never recover mentally.
–Beanie Wells didn’t enter Sunday’s shellacking until the 2nd quarter, and finished with just five carries for 19 yards. Ever the team player, he promptly complained publicly about his role, going so far as to infer that the Cardinals coaching staff was “crazy” for not playing him more. In actuality, they didn’t really have a chance to get him involved. Tim Hightower, the de facto starter, handled the first two possessions – as he did in Week 3 – before giving way to Wells. Beanie gained 12 yards on three consecutive carries, and then Derek Anderson happened. Two incompletions, two sacks, and an interception later, and the Cardinals were down 28-7.
Not really any need to run the rock at that point.
The Cardinals are a mess, sure, but the schedule is still cakey, and Wells is still a much better runner than Hightower. Be patient, you’ll get what you paid for eventually.
-The general consensus after watching Kevin Kolb direct the Eagles offense for three quarters is that he’s nothing more than a check down artist incapable of utilizing deep threats DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin. To refute that claim, I’ll direct you to Rex’s Department of “Yeah, but…”
Yeah, of Kolb’s 22 completions against Philly only two traveled further than 10 yards in the air, but…he still threw for 202 yards over three quarters, which extrapolated over a full game comes to 266 yards.
Yeah, Jackson and Maclin combined for just four catches and 34 yards, but…the Redskins set up in soft coverage with two deep safeties to combat the long pass, and didn’t switch strategies when Kolb took over.
Yeah, Kolb isn’t close to being the same fantasy force as Michael Vick, but…he is capable of consistently moving the chains and providing low-end QB1 numbers when the matchup is right, like this week against the 49ers 20th ranked pass defense.
-The leading receiver for the Texans was…Joel Dreessen? With Andre Johnson out, and Jacoby Jones incapacitated much of the game with a calf injury, I guess Dreessen leading the way isn’t THAT shocking, but still, where was Owen Daniels? Dreessen had more yards against Oakland (73) than Daniels has all year (68). Rumor has it, he’s not recovering so smoothly from last year’s ACL surgery, which shouldn’t be a big surprise, it was only the third time the guy’s had the ligament repaired. With 2010 being the Year of the Decent Tight End (Marcedes Lewis, Brandon Pettigrew, Ben Watson, Tony Moeaki, Tony Scheffler, Todd Heap, etc, etc), Daniels isn’t ownable in 12-team or shallower leagues. Neither is Dreessen.
-I’m not calling Mike Thomas a midget, but he’s definitely a little person. And he’s definitely the only Jaguars receiver worth considering in a starting role right now. Listed at 5’8″, Thomas is more likely in the Danny Woodhead 5’6″ range, but he’s kick-returner quick, and a disciplined route runner. On Sunday he was targeted a team-high seven times, catching five balls for 68 yards. He’s now averaging 4.2 catches and 52 yards a game on the year. Think Davone Bess circa 2008.
In other Jacksonville news: If you had Mike Sims-Walker in your “Jaguar receiver most likely to get caught with a Roar cheerleader” pool, you lose. In fact, if you bet on MSW in any kind of game that required him to do something in 2010, you lose. Fantasy wise, if you can trade him for anything – a bye week defense even – do it.
-I think so little of Brandon Stokley‘s four catch, 62-yard performance in his first game with the Seahawks that I’m not even going to mention it. He caught a 36-yarder in the fourth quarter, but other than that, looked just as unappealing as the other wideouts in the Seahawks stable. Glad I didn’t mention it. In a related story, Matt Hassellbeck hasn’t thrown for over 260 yards in nearly a full calendar year. Say it with me now, Char-lie White-hurst!
-The days of Michael Turner running as a lone wolf in the Falcons backfield are over. It’s time to welcome Jason Snelling to the pack. Turner had 16 totes for 50 yards on Sunday, with Snelling totaling seven for 31. The past two weeks the carry breakdown has been a 46/21 split in favor of Turner, which, considering the workload he used to receive, represents a fairly significant cut into his share.
On the bright side, the Falcons weren’t lying when they said they wanted to utilize The Mini Fridge in the passing game. After catching three balls for 28 yards against the Niners, Turner is now one grab shy of setting a career-high. Granted, his previous high was six, but still, the added receiving numbers might help to slightly offset the carries he’s losing to Snelling.
-Against the Titans, Laurence Maroney had 11 carries for five yards, Correll Buckhalter had six for three yards, and Kyle Orton led the way with three carries and 11 yards. Denver backs are now averaging 2.2 yards per attempt on the season, the only team in the league under 3.0. If you’re contemplating starting Knowshon Moreno against Baltimore, just…don’t.