The Patriots didn’t do any deflating Thursday night.
Instead, they inflated five Super Bowl trophy replicas that looked like they belonged in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade and rolled them onto the field before their season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs.
They put on the scoreboard: “Atlanta 28 NE 3 2:12 3rdQtr”
That was a reminder of their Super Bowl comeback, and the announcer talked about the greatest comeback of all time.
They unveiled their fifth Super Bowl banner.
Continue reading “Arrogant Patriots got a well-deserved comeuppance”
“Blake Bortles is the Tom Brady of Garbage Time,’’ blared the headline on the fivethirtyeight.com website.
The site is noted for crunching the numbers on political issues, but also covers sports. And Michael Salvino studied the numbers on Blake Bortles, the fourth-year Jaguars quarterback, for the past two seasons.
It turns out he was the best quarterback in the league in garbage time the past two years. Garbage time is defined on being down by nine or more points with four minutes or fewer left.
There has been a perception that Bortles tends to put up meaningless numbers in garbage time and Salvino’s research shows it is true.
Bortles completed 78 of 118 passes for 964 yards and 12 touchdowns and just four picks with a passer rating of 111 in garbage time. Tom Brady, who barely even knows what garbage time in a loss feels like, had a 112 passer rating for the season last year.
Continue reading “Bortles’ garbage-time stats are another damning indictment”
The Miami Dolphins’ desperation move to bring Jay Cutler out of retirement once Ryan Tannehill was injured is another example of how a team can be haunted for years by mistakes of past regimes.
That’s because neither Tannehill nor Cutler should be their quarterback.
Their quarterback should be Drew Brees, but the Dolphins bypassed him twice early in his career.
In the 2001 draft, they took cornerback James Fletcher with the 26th pick in the first round. Brees went to San Diego with the first pick of the second round even though Dolphins general manager Rick Spielman said before the draft that three members of his staff had looked at every college pass by Brees.
According to a story written in 2009 by Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, who still covers the team, Spielman told him after the draft they didn’t feel Brees was that much better than incumbent Jay Fiedler. Later, the story changed that then coach Dave Wannstedt pushed Fletcher instead of Brees.
Continue reading “Cutler move shows Dolphins still paying a price for past personnel sins”