NFL Week 1: Random Thoughts, Observations and How I Column

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NFL Week 1: Random Thoughts, Observations and How I Column
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Just some things that came to mind while watching Week 1's games or seeing the results.

Okay, Colts fans, say it with me: "Uh Oh!."  Before you tell to sell me the "Kerry will get better" Kool-Aid, answer this one honestly:  Were you ever worried about facing him when he was with Tennessee?  Didn't think so.

Were last season's Chiefs & Buccaneers teams beneficiaries of last place schedules and catching teams taking them lightly?  Looks like a possibility.

At thirty one, it's just possible that this is who Tony Romo is as an NFL quarterback, and all he'll ever be.  Would he not have gotten past the type of mistakes he made Sunday night by now if he was ever going to?  He should not be repeating mistakes that cost his team wins at this point in his career.

While we're at it, let's not let Mark Sanchez off the hook completely for his performance Sunday night either. 

Sanchez did not look any different to me from the guy we've seen the last two years. 

Yes, Rex has given him a longer leash, and the Jets appear to want to throw the ball around the yard more than in the past. But Sanchez was merely fortunate that his mistakes were not the final, fatal ones made from the quarterback position Sunday night.

I was wrong and I freely admit to it.  I once said Darren McFadden would be a huge bust on the NFL level.  I could not have been more wrong.  He has become a really good, solid NFL back.  Loved his blitz pickup against Denver.

Yes, he's staying healthy, getting into games and catching passes, but I sure would think more of Darrius Heyward-Bey if he would catch the ball with his hands instead of his body.  If he'd pluck the ball instead of letting it come to him, he might be able to make use of that sprinter's speed he's got.

I know that it is just one game, but they lost a starting offensive tackle, watched Ben Roethlisberger take his usual game day beating, turned the ball over seven times, and looked one year older and one step slower as a defensive unit all day long.  Seems like there ought to be cause for just a little concern in Steeltown.

There were those, myself included, who wondered why Denver passed on Marcell Dareus and selected Von Miller instead in April's draft.  Nothing against Dareus, who played well for Buffalo, but now I understand!  If he stays healthy, Miller is going to be special.  Very special.

Steven Jackson re-injures the quad muscle that gave him so much trouble last year on a non-contact play, and he is going to miss some time.  I just have to ask, is this a sign that his violent style of running is starting to catch up with him?

Sometimes, it is less about what you do and more about what you don't do.  Atlanta kept two of their three free agent offensive linemen, but failed to retain right guard Harvey Dahl.  So where did the constant pressure that undid Matt Ryan and the Falcon offense all day come from Sunday?  If you said the right guard spot formerly occupied by the departed Dahl, you clearly watched the game and saw what I did.  Adding Julio Jones was nice, but it won't help if they can't keep Matt Ryan upright and not running for his life.

If Arian Foster's balky hamstring should turn out to be a season long detriment, which these things sometimes do, it sure looks like Ben Tate will be more than capable of handling the load for the Texans.  Tate is a different kind of back than Foster, and if I were Gary Kubiak, I'd be making sure Tate gets his carries even if Foster's hamstring comes around.  That could be more of a one-two punch than defenses can handle. 

Yes, the Eagles won the game, but what may have slipped under the radar is the fact that Mike Vick's completion percentage looked more like the bad old days in Atlanta than last year's breakout season. 

He completed fourteen of thirty two passes on Sunday, which makes for a completion percentage under forty four percent by my calculations.  Those were not due to drops either, he was just off.  Way off.

It would seen to me that when a team lives, plays and practices in heat and humidity, they ought to be able to handle it better than the Dolphins did Monday night. 

I realize much of it had to do with Tom Brady and the Patriots offense, but the Dolphins looked gassed and were cramping midway through the second quarter.  You have to be able to handle your home elements better than that.

If Detroit, who still inexplicably failed to address their offensive line issues this offseason, can somehow keep Matthew Stafford upright and healthy, they could be a very dangerous football team.  However, since they have yet to address the problem, it could become a crap-shoot once again. Personally, I hope not, I'd like to see Stafford make it through a season for once.

I want to congratulate Tennessee's Chris Johnson. Nine carries for twenty four yards to go with six catches for twenty five yards. 

Congratulations, Chris, you're now overpaid, just like everyone else in the NFL and in pro sports in general. 

No one, and I do mean no one, is worth the kind of money these guys get paid.  I know, I know, the market will bear it.  But does that make it right?

Was that a Ted Ginn Jr. sighting?  By my count, that's the second time in his career he's had a major impact on a game.  Better treasure it, there probably won't be another one for at least a few seasons.  Think the Dolphins would like that pick back? 

One has to feel at least a little bit sorry for Adrian Peterson. It looks like he's going to have to bear the entire weight of the Vikings offense on his shoulders this season, or at least until the Vikings turn to Christian Ponder. 

Donovan McNabb looked like a man who should retire on Sunday.

It was good to see that the officials were in mid-season form.  I wish I could recall exactly which game it was, but since I was watching so many of them I can't (NFL Sunday Ticket can do that for you sometimes,) but there was a helmet-to-helmet shot on a quarterback right in front of an official that was clearly missed.  Then there was the worst call of the opening weekend, the pass interference call on A.J. Hawk in the end zone that could have cost the Packers the game. 

Funny, my high school coach always taught us that after you hit the ball, doesn't matter if you hit the receiver.  I must be mistaken.

Speaking of Saints-Packers, Saints rookie running back Mark Ingram looks to me like he's going to be every bit the back in the NFL he was in college.  And do not hold that last play of the game against him either.  That play started at the Packers one yard line, but by the time he got the ball, the Packers had pushed the Saints offensive line back a yard. That's one is on the line, not the back.

You have to feel at least a little sorry for Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio. 

The David Garrard move was clearly one made with only financial motive, and owner Wayne Walker insists the team must make the playoffs for Del Rio to keep his job.  Del Rio has to feel like the guy walking the Green Mile.

As a head coach, he is one of the worst I have ever seen, but the Texans hire of Wade Phillips to be their defensive coordinator might just be the move that finally puts the Texans in the playoffs.  But whatever they do, if they should fire Gary Kubiak, they had better not make the mistake of promoting Phillips to head coach.

Finally, yeah I know I've heard it before, if you don't like them, stop them, but is anyone else as sick and tired as I am of watching Bill Belicheat's churlish habit of running up the score on people? 

There was absolutely no good reason not to just run the ball and the clock after Wes Welker's ninety-nine yard touchdown put the game totally out of reach for the Dolphins.  And don't give me any of that "if Miami had scored quickly, recovered an onside kick and then..." type of scenario.  That defense was so gassed at that point that half of them couldn't even run any longer.  Turn around, hand the ball off, and run out the clock.  Or, in other words, I know you don't have any, but try to show a little class.

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