Has he FINALLY turned the table?


Since the 2011 NFL Season began, I have been trying to piece together WHAT I’VE LEARNED each week. Lately, my knowledge has expanded to overall themes for each week. After Week 9’s events, I believe it is time for me to go back to breaking down each Division individually.


AFC NORTH (Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns)

* Baltimore has finally stepped out of that “little brother” role and taken over the AFC North. Look at the last 5 Ravens-Steelers match-ups, dating back to last season: Ravens won 17-14 in Week 4. They held a 10-point lead in Week 13, before trying to get cute and falling victim to Troy Polamalu. They held a 21-point lead at half time of last year’s Playoffs. Now they have beaten Pittsburgh in both of this year’s regular season games

* Maybe Pittsburgh’s “D” is getting old???

* Cincinnati is 6-2. It’s time for us to stop doubting and start paying attention


AFC EAST (Buffalo Bills, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Miami Dolphins)

* After a dominant start, Buffalo doesn’t seem so tough. But they have definitely upgraded their status from last year to “litte brother”….which means they are primed and almost ready to overtake the “big brother(s)” of the Division.

* Other than Brady, Welker, and the TE’s…..the Patriots Offense is pitiful. But not as pitiful as their defense.

* The Jets defense seems to be back to their win-producing ways

* Miami does still have a little bit of pride left.


AFC SOUTH (Tennessee Titans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans)

* If Houston’s offense can click this well with Andre Johnson out of the lineup….it’s going to be brutal when he returns

* Remembering the seasons when the Redskins would run Clinton Portis ragid….I’m wondering if the same thing happened to the Titan’s Chris Johnson???

* Peyton Manning was even better than I thought. I knew he was a surgeon on offense, but I never knew his absence would have such an effect on the defense. Painter is not the answer


AFC WEST (San Diego Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Denver Broncos)

* The Chargers have an IDENTITY CRISIS. How do you blow a game against the Chiefs one week, and then get into a 83-point shoot out with the Super Bowl Champs the next?

* The Chiefs have an IDENTITY CRISIS. How do you pull off an impressive win against Phillip Rivers one week, and then get destroyed by the winless Dolphins the next?

* The Bengals were smart for moving forward without Palmer. In just 2 games, he has thrown more interceptions than half the league’s quarterbacks, and has the second lowest QB Rating in the league (53.9)

* Tim Tebow had his first “Tim Tebow” game and it looked pretty impressive.


NFC NORTH (Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings)

* I continue to say that the Packers are itching for a loss. They give up more points than half the teams in the NFL. It’s no surprise, because if you look at all the teams that are headed by a great QB, all except the “BLACK AND GOLD” rely on their Offense to help their Defense play with a CUSHION.

* Maybe Chicago is ready to be “EXACTLY WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE”. Monday night’s game was impressive, even with many uncharacteristic mistakes from Forte. But I think we always knew that it was the COMMON mistakes that always hurt them. i.e. Jay Cutler


NFC EAST (Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins, New York Giants)

* New York, and even Dallas in a way, sat back and listened to all the Pre-Season talk about Washington and Philly. Today, the team that was predicted to go to the Super Bowl, and the team that is “FOR REAL” this year are both sitting at 3-5. It’s easy to look impressive in the Pre-Season

* Remember what I said about Jay Cutler…..well the same applies to Tony Romo. As long as he doesn’t make any bonehead plays, and then goes to the sideline scratching his head, Dallas plays good football

* Washington hasn’t done anything to fix their losing way. They put all their chips in the “Rex Grossman” basket at the beginning of the season. Now he is benched, and 4 straight losses have pursued.

* I did an article called “Q-MEN: First Class“, pointing out the Top 8 quarterbacks in the NFL. I would like to argue that out of those 8, Eli Manning has more unexpected, heroic wins than any of the others. (I can explain that)


NFC SOUTH (New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Carolina Panthers)

* This Division continues to do what it has done for the past 8 seasons….win big games against other NFL teams, and beat up one another

* Matt Ryan will be talked about for years to come. If you put a player in front of him with at least an ounce of football skill and I.Q., he will utilize them EFFICIENTLY. Think of the other QB’s in the league that we say that about…..Brady, P. Manning, Rodgers, and Brees

* Tampa Bay needs more pieces. Coach Morris has believed for the past 2 seasons that they are the “best team in the league”, but he is wrong. They need to keep building

*I haven’t discussed any teams who were on “bye” last week, but I must say….CAM NEWTON has easily adapted to the NFL, and is looking like a seasoned veteran in the league


NFC WEST (San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams, Arizona Cardinals)

* San Fran is a 3-headed monster. After watching Alex Smith for years, I have been patiently waiting for the collapse, but they are still going strong, and have some big wins under their belt

* Many of us thought the Rams were the team who would take over the West, but we were very wrong

* Remember what I said about the Washington Redskins? Well, the Seahawks put all their chips in the “Tavaris Jackson” basket. How is that working out?


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