Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Tuesday FourCast: Week 14

Not much of an intro to this week's FourCast. But I must point out that I really, really had to fight the urge of my childish mentality (equivalent to that of an 11-year old boy) which wanted me to post the video clip of Visanthe's "Shiancoe." I mean, to post a link to the obvious flub by Fox would be unprofessional and immature. Seriously, we here at PHSports consider ourselves a legitimate media outlet and would never even consider linking to a video clip at the expense of the Minnesota Tight End and his "Viking." Never.

1. Long Schaub Silver's
Matt Schaub was once regarded as a diamond in the rough. NFL scouts and analysts thought he was the second coming of Joe Montana or Johnny Unitas. Hell, Schaub received enough praise to make Beano Cook's love of Ron Powlus look like a schoolgirl crush. Of course, this was before Schaub had ever taken a meaningful regular season snap. Now that Matty has played nearly two seasons (19 games) as the Houston Texans starting QB, he has thrown for only 3 more TDs than INTs (21 to 18), and has a QB rating of somewhere in the viscinity of 89.6. Not terrible numbers ... but nothing that would lead you to believe that he'd win more Heismans than Powlus. That leads us to Sunday's game against the Packers. The Pack's defense is not a group of pushovers, especially not the secondary. Yet Schaub managed to pick that unit apart for 414 yards and 2 TDs, including a 58-yarder to Kevin Walter (chicks dig the long ball). If that's the Schaub that the NFL was clamoring about, then the Texans have a shot at a bright future. But for now, he's just as consistent as Kordell Stewart.

2. "Do women (or the Bills) know about Shrinkage?"
4-10 since 1994. 2-7 all-time in games after December 1. Those are various win-loss records of the Miami Dolphins in Buffalo. Obviously the Fins don't like cold weather. So Sunday's game at Buffalo should've provided the Bills a chance at recovering from their current slump. Even with J.P. Los"er"man starting in place of the injured Trent Edwards, that frigid upstate New York weather was going to paralyze Miami. Problem: the game wasn't in Buffalo. Huh? Ralph "A penny saved is a penny earned" Wilson was so s-m-r-t as to give away the edge the weather gave his team over a warm weather franchise and have the game played indoors?
Evidently, the Wilson's bank account isn't the only place where he needs help. Sure, I get the idea of testing out a new market for your team. Especially one that has a larger population and higher tv-viewership than Buffalo. But why not move the game against New England there? Or the Jets? Why let the "warm fuzzies" known as the Dolphins play in a stadium that's protected from the ball-freezing weather in Buffalo in December? It makes no sense. Sorry Buffalo fans, but this decision by your team's ownership was "wide right."

3. Is That a Concealed Handgun in Plaxico's Pocket? Or Are You Just Happy to See Me?
Back in the pre-season, I declared that the New York Giants didn't need lots of talent at wide receiver. That statement was prompted by the Giants performance during the all-important third week of the pre-season in which Eli Manning completed seven passes to five different receivers, none of whom was named Plaxico or Amani. Last week, against the Redskins, my observation appeared to be accurate. Eli threw for 305 yards, completing 21 passes to six different receivers, all with Plaxico out due to his inability to control his piece. But this past Sunday, against the Eagles, it seemed the Giants receivered not named Burress weren't up to the task. Domenick Hixon (the same guy who caught two TDs in the aforementioned pre-season game) dropped a beautiful lob from Manning that was a surefire TD. The drops were all over the place as the receiving crew did all they could to try and prove me wrong. Unfortunately, I'm stubborn (yes, I'm hard headed) and refuse to admit that I'm wrong quite yet. I still say that Manning doesn't need Burress or an exceptional WR to make plays happen. Last week was the exception ... week 13 against the Redskins was the rule.

4. Which NFC Division Has the Stroke?
A month or so into the season, many were declaring the NFC East as the best division in football. None of the four teams had a losing record, and the only losses for any of the teams had occured within the division. Fourteen weeks into the season and still all four teams are above .500. But the same holds true for the NFC South. After the slobber-knocker between Tampa and Carolina last night, the NFC South has a combined record of 34-18 (.654). The NFC East stands firm at 33-18-1 (.644). Outside of their respective division games, the East is 24-9-1 (.721) and the South is 24-8 (.750). The difference between the two divisions is like splitting hairs. In two weeks the current division leaders will meet as the Giants (11-2) will face the Panthers (10-3) in a game that will determine the #1 seed in the NFC playoffs. Not to take away from the NFC East's achievements thus far, because the combined win-loss record of those four teams is truly stellar. But, perhaps, self-proclaimed sports-gurus were a bit too quick to "crown their ass."

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