Tuesday, September 12, 2006

MNF: Skins Fizzle, Chargers Sizzle

MNF1: Vikes top Skins. I know that Clinton Portis was hurt, but I'm beginning to think new offensive coordinator Al Saunders is all talk.

The $2 million assistant coach boasts of a 700-page playbook and of only showcasing 2 percent of his offense during the preseason.

Well, now we're in the regular season, and the Redskins racked up all of 266 yards and one measly TD (thanks to a game but limited Portis).

Tony Kornheiser had it right at the start of the broadcast: Al Saunders needed to show Redskins fans something last night. And he didn't.

Meanwhile, I love TK. I've been reading him in the newspaper since I was a kid growing up in D.C., and I got the chance to really be a booster in the Quickie the morning of his MNF preseason debut. But why was he so milquetoast last night? I want my Mr. Tony back!

(MNF Extra: There was this great graphic early in the game listing all of the many, many QBs drafted before Brad Johnson in 1992. It's a bit misleading: That entire group included all bonafide college starters; remember, Brad Johnson was the Matt Cassel of Florida State: He barely played in college. Now, that doesn't diminish his incredible pro career. But it explains his original draft position.)

Update (10:50 a.m.): OK, I totally whiffed on having NOTHING about Tom Cruise being Dan Snyder's very special guest at the game. Will Leitch at Deadspin was all over it, as usual.

MNF2: Chargers blank Raiders. Philip Rivers doesn't have to be great or even particularly good. He just has to kind of hang around, handing the ball to LT and letting the defense pitch a shutout.

It WAS a win over the hapless Raiders, but the Chargers finished Week 1 with the NFL's most impressive win, given the questions about dumping vet QB Drew Brees for the untested Rivers.

Rivers' stat line spoke volumes: 8/11 for 108 yards and a TD. Not Manning-ish, but perfectly fine when his RB can have 131 rushing yards and the D can have 9 sacks.

Comment Question: Which teams (and/or players) were YOUR biggest studs (or duds) of Week 1?

Check out the next item for a complete Quickie-style wrap-up of the biggest stories in sports today.

-- D.S.

Update: "Are you retarded?": The most honest NFL quote of 2006 comes from Tom Jackson to Michael Irvin on Sunday NFL Countdown. Here's the link to the video.

(I don't really condone the language: It shows a real -- and rare -- lack of sensitivity on TJ's part. But, as long as he was going to say it, it was very effective.)


Anonymous said...

Stud: Charlie Batch. 15-for-25, 209 yards, 3 touchdowns. Current has the highest QB rating in the league (OK, not for long).

It may have seemed difficult to make Matt Millen look dumber, but batch's performance more or less proves it. Millen had a perfectly acceptable quarterback in Detroit, but got Joey Harrington on the brain. Now they're both back-ups, but only one has a ring and an undefeated record since 2001.

Dud: Brett Favre. It does not diminish his career to say it's time to go. Brett can still throw a pretty pass; unfortunately, he throws it to the cornerback.

Anonymous said...

I'm beginning to think new offensive coordinator Al Saunders is all talk.


Anonymous said...

What the politically correct stiffs don't realize is that the younger generations have become completely desensitized to words such as "retarded" and "gay". Teenagers routinely swap both those words in where the previous generation would have said "lame". At one time these words referred to people, but more and more the politically correct terms are the ones recognized, and the former slang terms are now just generic slang, without a reference to anyone.

TJ is just playing up to the younger generations by asking Irvin if he was retarded, because any youth would ask the same question of anyone making such a rediculous claim.

Anonymous said...

Dud to the Pats for screwing up the Branch situation and trading him. Stud to the Pats for at least getting a first round pick out of it. With alot of cap space and an extra first round pick now, Belichick and Pioli better step it up next offseason and bring in impact players to fill some of the glaring holes on this team.

I had to look up Shanoff's big word of the day. So for everyone as smart as me, milquetoast is defined as a timid, meek or unassertive person.

John (Portland, ME)

Anonymous said...

Irvin claimed that the game was more important to Eli than to Peyton.
I would agree with that. Maybe not for the same reasons though.
I'll admit it, I like Irvin on that show.

And it isn't ONE FUCKING GAME for Saunders...it's FIVE games now, including preseason. And zip.
Washington might win 6 games this year.

Anonymous said...

seriously Shamhoff stop being so PC. Retarded is used everyday.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"if TK was chrisitan would you be so vociferous in your support?"

Hey Dan, congratulations! Mel Gibson reads your blog!

Anonymous said...

I don't know about Kornheiser. He is mostly fun to listen to, but I don't know why he twice implied that Sean Taylor was being unfairly penalized (for 30 yds to put the nail in the 'Skins coffin) because of his penchant for being a big hitter. Maybe there's an arguement on the first late hit, but a facemask is a facemask. Kudos to Theismann for keeping cool and not giving Tony a noogie. I don't want to hear about his fantasy team either.

I doubt Irvin is actually retarded, just a product of the U. Tom Jackson just voiced the same thing that 75% of the country says to their t.v.'s whenever Irvin goes on a rant. Weirdly, that was one of Irvin's more coherent arguements.

Anonymous said...

Where are all the Redskins fans who thought Antwaan Randle El was going to be the difference maker? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Enjoy your $6 million dollar 10 yard punt returner.

Brien said...

Hey, Anonymous ...

It's way past your bedtime ... give your daddy back his keyboard and mouse and get to bed.

Kids ... sheesh ...

D. Ling said...

Dan, I'm going to disagree with you, the Chargers win was impressive last night but over a horrible Raiders team. It pains me to say this but the most impressive win of the week was definitely the Baltimore Ravens rolling all over Tampa Bay, a playoff calibre team.

Stud: Donte Stallworth (who saw that coming?)

Dud: Favre

LudaKris said...

The Mel Gibson comment was the funniest damn thing I have ever read on this site.

Stud: Anyone playing against the Raiders.

Dud: Anyone who said Chris Simms would have a breakout year. After getting his assistant coordinator's initials tatooed on his ankle, are we sure the analyst's didn't say 'Brokeback' year??? Im not sure either.

Kristopher (Tampa, FL)

Mark (Austin, TX) said...

Stud: I have to go with Donte Stallworth, that was a coming out party I didn't expect. Second stud to the Baltimore Defense, I thought it was 2000 all over again.

Dud: Farve, Brooks, Simms and the combined points of Tampa, Oakland and Green Bay.

As for the MNF, I think Saunders has to show something and quick. They only managed 16 points against what is at best an average D. What happens when they face the Giants or the Cowboys? That could get ugly if Saunders doesn't have better in the playbook. Some of the plays I saw, seemed too complicated, maybe he needs to stick to the Readers Digest condensed version of the playbook?

As for the other game, I turned it off and went to bed at 10-0 when Brooks got sacked again (I think it was the 3rd of the game). As much as it pains me to say this, I may need to find a new NFL team. I have been a Raider fan since I was 6 and they were in Super Bowl XV so I have a long history with them (including 10 years of sticking by them while living in Colorado). But this team, it stinks, has stunk, and will stink for a good while it looks like. Any suggestions for a new team?

Richard said...

I'll go with the lesser known studs and (not all my studs were winners):


1. Alex Smith - Did we all jump the gun on him too early?

2. Frank Gore - OK no more 49ers Kool-Aid for me.

3. Jeff Wilkins - 21 points for my fantasy team.

4. Plaxico Burress - Sick juggling catches.

5. Warrick Dunn - Most underrated back in the league.

Anonymous said...

It's pretty sad when your starting fantasy qb, 2 rb's, and 2 wr's outscore your kicker by 2 points!! Thanks again to Bledsoe, Cadillac, Thomas Jones, Roy Williams, and Darrell Jackson.

Mark (Austin, TX) said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mark (Austin, TX) said...

I just came across this and thought I would add it to the commentary. A furniture store in the Chicago area is out about $300,000 because the owner promised free furniture if the Bears shutout the Packers. Full story at http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=local&id=4552477

The Teeth of the Green Monster said...

Two things. One, San Diego's defense looked great. But it was against Aaron "Horse blinders" Brooks. The guy has no peripheral vision and throws into more double coverage than anyone else into the league. Plus, as Dickey V pointed out, Shell allowed Brooks to take seven step drops against a defense that was three yards behind the line of scrimmage by the fifth step. The Chargers offense will struggle all year if they continue to play like that. LT will be out of gas by week ten. Yeah Rivers went 8/10 but that averages out to two throws per quarter. What NFL offense can get away with that every week? It won't be the Chargers. Plus Marty S. is the all time greatest coach when it comes to coaching a division winning teams OUT of the playoffs. Secondly, did anyone else love Dickey V as a commentator last night. Very insightful and he highlighted offensive line blocks and explained about different passing routes. Jaws was great too. Dickey V is the kind of guy I'd like to watch a game with for his insight. Nice to see a network pick up a coach FRESH from coaching to add to the telecast. Instead of dusting an old relic of a coach from the Bart Starr era. By the way I am a Patriots fan and have disliked the Chiefs for years, so I'm not smooching up to Dickey V because of his KC ties.

Joe said...

A gigantic "boo" to Carolina and Denver. I can forgive Washington (versus and underrated Minnesota team that looks better than anyone thought), and even Tampa (well, I guess Baltimore IS that good), but Carolina's no show at home doesn't exactly justify the superbowl hype, and Denver performance really gives a little validity to the "Jake-looking-over-his-shoulder" theories.

On that note, major props to the road warriors this weekend. I don't think we're seeing a trend, but it's a good sign for the league that guys are getting that excited and going that hard in debuts, no matter where.

Anonymous said...

Dickie V?

Vitale does football?

If you mean Vermeil..say Vermeil. hehe

The Teeth of the Green Monster said...

Dickey V = Coach Dick Vermeil

Mikepcfl said...

Wow, the Deadskin fans are a little sensitive this morning. I guess it sucks to have another $100 million non-playoff team. I know it was 1 game, but 1 funny game to watch Danny-boy and Top Gun watching the loss together. BTW, which one is taller?

Anonymous said...

Stud: The whole Chicago Bears team. I know it was the Packers but if they can move the ball on offense like that, with that defense, they have got to be one of the favorites in the NFC. Love how the media flew off the Rex bandwagon now their back in love with him.

Dud: The Raiders for actually hiring Art "no game or clock management skills" Shell. Also, for getting the best vertical receiver and only throwing him quick outs.

Anonymous said...

did anyone else enjoy the late-night announcing team? Thought that vermil-nessler-jaws did a good job.

Anonymous said...

Dave Ling & Franchise said...
Dan, I'm going to disagree with you, the Chargers win was impressive last night but over a horrible Raiders team. It pains me to say this but the most impressive win of the week was definitely the Baltimore Ravens rolling all over Tampa Bay, a playoff calibre team.

Quoted for truth...

Stud: That Ravens defense for making me eat my "they aren't getting any younger" comment last week

DUD:"Playmaker" Quarterbacks Culpepper Favre and Plummer could learn a lot by watching a QB like Brad Johnson manage a game... they guy is a true pro when it comes to making the right throw and knowing the limitations of the play he has called..

ExTrA STUD: My Fantasy Football insight... I sat Cadillac for Deshaun Foster and won by 5 points..

by the way, I'm suprised Shanoff doesn't have the chaps and the pink rodeo hat on... riding the Chargers like the Rodeo Show this morning

Anonymous said...

My duds were hasselcrack and yugo I mean cadillac. I'd be suprised if my bucs go 6-10 this yr. I thought gruden was an offensive wunderkind but my bad he just sucks. Of course when we get our o line back healthy things might change.

My stud was chicago's and merriman. I had to go out and pick up sd's def as my back up. They looked good but then again they are playing oakland. I think it is interesting that brooks now plays in oakland. IT is like their offense disappeared into their black hole never to be seen again.

Anonymous said...

Two thoughts:

a) While 'retarded' is no doubt increasingly recognized as normal slang and not necessarily un-PC, people on camera need to realize that its going to rub some folks the wrong way. Do i use it? sure. but i'm not on camera.

b) I knew it was going to be a long night for the skins when dude got injured on the opening kick off. that's just a bad sign. he didn't even get hit, did he?

Stewart said...

Hey, Ted! I'll take 13 yards per return, any day. Randle-El showed he's always a threat back there. He was one of our few bright spots last night.

Anonymous said...

At the end of the vikes game when they showed tom cruise and daniel snyder in the owners box some drunk yelled there is the antichrist lets kill him and threw a beer bottle at the tv and was quickly escorted out of the building. Oh yeah that was me. Now if tom cruises movies will bomb as bad as saunders offense I will be a happy man.

Nick Lee said...

I know the 'Skins haven't been impressive but has it ever occurred to anyone that the Vikes D might actually be improving? They came on strong at the end of last year and showed up big in the preseason.

Stud: Brad Johnson. Not huge numbers, but poise and leadership out the wazoo.

Dud: Favre. Give up hope, Packers fans.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for going all Joe Buck/Skip Bayless on us Shanoff. The word "retarded" is obviously the new fake mooning/whatever Skip is outraged about this week. This is the kind of crap that gets sportswriters' panties in a bunch, but its exactly what the fans want to see. It'd be nice to have some actual color in sportscasting for a change. We need more Tony Kornheisers on TV, and ESPN.com needs more of the Dan Shanoff who refers to the Vikings as the "Double-Sided Dildos."

I agree with what another poster said. Retarded? Gay? Yes, these words can be offensive and hurtful, but its really about context in my opinion. Jackson simply called Michael Irvin an idiot, not a person with severe mental and developmental disabilities. Although the latter might be true, cocaine's a hell of a drug.

Ma4tt (the 4 is silent) said...

For once, I totally agree with Michael Irvin. Eli is, has been, and always will be in Peyton's shadow. He's a 52% passer with lots of promise, but he has to put it all together. If he had gone out and gone 22 for 30, 280 yards, 3 TDs and gotten the win, everyone would be saying that Eli had "arrived." What did TJ (who I love, by the way) say after the "retarded" quote? Was there some nitpicky thing that he was specifically rebutting?

Anonymous said...

Retarded does not = down syndrome. Stop being a douche Mr "Instant History'.

Anonymous said...

Hey Stewart, whats that average out to, about $2 mil per return yard. You'll be lucky to see him actually catch a TD pass this year. Better hope he breaks one on a punt, because that's his only hope. Redskin fans saw one TD pass in the SB and thought they won the lottery with this guy. He would probably be 4th on the Steelers depth chart this year. Enjoy Stewie.

Anonymous said...

for goldberg to pick Thomas Jones as one of his two must starts, he sure did stink it up against the hapless Packers...

for an unexpected performance (albeit he had help from the officials), Heath Miller (our 13th ranked TE and a sleeper pick) helped me cement fantasy this week...

Anonymous said...

Stud: Devin Hester, and I doubt that's the last time I'll be typing that this season.

Duds: Green Bay and Oakland. Let the race for AJ Hawk's brother-in-law begin!
Dud: The NY Jets. They already screwed up their draft position.

(Do the '76 Buccaneers uncork the Champagne when the last winless team gets a win?)

Anonymous said...

Randle El wasn't signed to be a #1 receiver. He's there to be a #3 and PR/KR. Sure they gave him a huge contract BUT THEY CAN AFFORD TO.

So everyone who says "hey enjoy 2 mil per catch" is missing the boat and ipso facto, a retard.

Anonymous said...

Dud: Christy Simms and Jon Gruden. Most overrated combo in the game.

Anonymous said...

Sure, they can financially afford to spend that kind of money on a return man, but they can't afford it where it counts, the Win column.

Poor investments like Randle El are the reason the Redskins continue to stink the joint up.

But far be it for me to stop the Dead Skins from throwing money at the flavor of the month. Enjoy the 8-8 season.

Curtis (Indy) said...

I want to start off by saying I love TK and really wish he would talk more than he has been. However in fairness to him I think Theisman dominates a lot of the airwaves. If I were ESPN I'd trade Theisman and Jaws. I can only imagine how well Jaws and TK would get along great in the booth. It just seems anytime TK tells a joke, Theisman almost seems annoyed by it.

Stud: Carson Palmer, not overwhelming stats, but won at KC, and just the fact he got on the field was good enough for me.

Dud: NFC East. Most.Overrated.Division.Ever
Everyone is saying it's the toughest division. I guess that may be true but only because of the mediocrity of the teams. The Giants have a real chance to run away with that division.

Stud Team: Baltimore, shut out of what many people considered a playoff team.

Anonymous said...

I've always like Nessler when he did college games.

I love Jaws insight, he can break down what's happening in terms of X's and O's as well as anybody.

The broadcasters do need some improvement. My biggest beef was that ESPN kept cutting away to do an update, or having a player introduce other players, and wouldn't get back in time to see the next play.

ryan from falmouth,ma

xcdannon said...

my studs.
i not only had donte' stallworth but frank gore as well. now i could pretend like i am some fantasy sage, but really it was a whole lot of luck. i wouldn't have even started gore if not for espn's nifty notes about gore being the starter and nolan's desire to have a 60-40 run-pass split. how can you keep a guy on the bench after that.

my duds.
carson palmer! only 3 pts. my opponent had trent green going, who matched palmer's 3 pts despite practically dying in the third quarter.
dolphins d and roy williams also sucked it up.