This is the debut of a new weekly feature called ‘Sunday Press Conference.’ These articles will have ten thoughts from that week’s Sunday’s games released right after ‘Sunday Night Football’ has wrapped up. Enjoy!
1) My Super Bowl pick doesn’t look good
I predicted on Wednesday that Super Bowl 52 would be the Giants vs Patriots. Those teams are now a combined 0-2 and both have major long-term issues. However, I am no where near as concerned with the Patriots as I am with the Giants. Their offense literally had four yards after one quarter and a mere 50 at the half. While their offensive line will get a lot of negative press, and rightfully so, everyone on this offense deserves some level of blame. Don’t think Odell Beckham is going to fix New York’s issues either.
2) Cowboys looked poised for another deep postseason run
While I did pick them to finish second in the division, and still wouldn’t rule it out, I also thought they would win double digit games and not take the big step back many people were predicting. There was no sign of a sophomore slump for Dak or Zeke and their defense — specifically DeMarcus Lawrence — was better than expected. It will be interesting to see if Dallas can maintain this against better offenses.
3) Derek Carr will be the face of the NFL within two years
Today was a stepping-stone win for the Raiders. To beat a probable playoff team like the Tennessee Titans in that type of composed fashion was really impressive. I will remind you that this was his first game back since he broke his fibula along with having new additions to get acclimated to: Marshawn Lynch and Jared Cook. That is the tell tale sign of not only a franchise quarterback, but a Super Bowl quarterback. That is no small step to take and Carr has taken it.
I have bloviated all offseason long hyping up Carr and will continue to. Can you remind me why Carr was ranked just tenth in certain QB rankings? Not only should he be top ten in every single list out there, he should be top five. Yes, right now and there is no reason to expect he won’t continue to improve.
4) Seahawks and Packers underwhelm in afternoon showdown
Both of these teams are some people’s picks to at least get to the NFC Championship game, and neither of them looked that way today. The Seahawks’ offensive line continues to be a disaster that looks like it will plague them all season long. Dare I say they might be worse than last season?
While Green Bay won, their running game makes them one dimensional which will eventually hurt them when they make the playoffs. Ty Montgomery simple isn’t a number one running back in the NFL especially when the offensive line struggled to get the push the way they did today. I get it is only one game, but I think the Seahawks and Packers will struggle to reach double-digit wins.
5) Cousins and Wentz continue to be consistently inconsistent
Both of these guys are considered “franchise QBs” right now, but I continue to draw into question why? Probably because of the state of the QB position right now, but still, really? You can look at the box scores and make assumptions, but watching these two in real time is mind-musingly frustrating. Wentz continues to overthrow is receivers multiple times a game which is an issue that dates make to last season.
Meanwhile, Cousins continues to be inconsistent and shows a lack of clock awareness way too often at this point in his career. Yes, they are both five years apart so the future looks better for Wentz, but right now they look awfully similar: consistently inconsistent.
6) Steelers and Falcons win, but show long-term concerns
Yes, a win is win, but it is hard to feel that way after watching two teams with conference championship game aspirations struggle to beat two of the worst teams in the league. The Steelers offensive line was dominated for most of the day which only allowed Le’Veon Bell to rush for 32 yards. Mind you, that was the Browns’ defensive line without their number one overall pick Myles Garrett. If it wasn’t for their own defensive line they would have lost to the Browns…just let that sink in.
It took a dropped touchdown pass by the Mike Glennon led Bears for the Falcons to win this game. Their offensive looked anything but its explosive self like it was last year. The now rich Akiem Hicks ate up the Falcons’ offensive line all game long which is yet another long-term concern. Don’t forget about that Super bowl hangover…it is still alive and well.
7) The Arizona Cardinals won’t have one more good year
While baffling to me, many were wondering whether or not the Arizona Cardinals could rebound after a lackluster season. That answer is an emphatic no after their putrid loss to the Detroit Lions today. If it wasn’t for an early pick-six, the final score would have been even more embarrassing. For those of you who watch this wire-to-wire, you got to witness Carson Palmer look every bit his 37 years of age, Phil Dawson hit the upright on a field goal while they were still leading, and the long bright spot in their offense from last year — David Johnson — fumble twice and suffer a wrist injury. Maybe, just maybe, they can beat the Luck-less Colts next week…though I wouldn’t put my money on that either.
8) I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so
I talked about the Texans’ QB battle a month ago and the reality is it shouldn’t have been much of a battle. Watson was the clear superior quarterback all preseason long and that showed today. Let me remind you that Watson (a rookie) beat Tom Savage’s (2014 draft pick) career TD total on his first drive. How many years are we going to say the same thing over and over again? “If only Houston had a quarterback.”
9) Rams and Jared Goff looked really improved, but no one was there to see it
Last year’s number one overall picked finally lived up to that to some extent now that he has a coach that actually wants to coach him. Listen, I get this _ point blowout was against the Colts (who I will get to in a moment) but it is something last year’s Rams wouldn’t of done. I thought the Rams could rebound to some extent this season, but the first real test comes next week in Washington.
Unfortunately, no one was really their to see it. These pictures on Twitter led to meany criticizing the teams move to LA to begin with. Do you really think they went their for attendance? Because they didn’t. All the money involved with theses teams goes so far beyond the attendance, especially for the Rams.
10) Colts find themselves in an embarrassing spot as an organization
I tweeted out the following during the Colts’ blowout lost:
Hours later I only feel stronger. The management inside that organization could have invested heavily in an offensive line to protect Luck, but they didn’t. Once they knew their franchise quarterback was going to be out for an extended period of time, they could have signed someone else other than Scott Tolzien, but they didn’t. I would like to say this loss will open the organization eyes, but let’s be honest, it probably won’t.
-Article by Nick Friend
Tomorrow: The Sports with Nick Show with a TON of NFL reaction as well as the podcast