This week’s questions and discussion…
1) A sports page headline in Thursday’s NYDN read, “Jets’ offensive coordinator John Morton admits he gave up against Broncos in the fourth quarter.”
Of course, Morton gave a rationale for his comment that he essentially “gave up” in the fourth quarter such as… “The game was out of hand, and I didn’t want some bad stuff to happen. Okay? I don’t like saying no más, but listen, it was time to get out of there”… and… “They kicked our butts, and sometimes, that just happens in the National Football League, and I’m not going to sit there and have these guys run a bunch of routes and something bad happen, make bad decisions. I didn’t want that to happen. So, I made the decision … I just wanted to run it and just get out of there. That was the thinking.”
Added to the equation was that the starting QB (who obviously wasn’t exactly very effective considering the score) was injured and the backup QB completed just one of his eight pass attempts and maybe Morton waved the white flag Sunday to avoid damaging Petty’s confidence. When the NYDN asked that question, Morton replied, “We were behind, we didn’t have a chance. They’re just dropping back in coverage, and then we’re just going to be throwing, forcing balls. I didn’t want that. I didn’t think that was fair. Call it whatever you want. I just thought that was the right decision to do at that time.”
Is it ever “right” for a coach to declare he simply gave up, tossed in the towel, during a game or should that coach simply be replaced?
Chad: I mean ,fans can speculate about a team quitting or whatever the case might be, but the coach shouldn’t come out and say that they quit. What kind of message does that send to the rest of the team or possible free agents you would want to bring in as part of a rebuild.
Joe: In 2002, Herm Edwards, the then coach of the NY Jets, probably said it best when he answered a reporter’s question that put forth the query, “Do you have to talk to your team about not giving up on the season?”
“You don’t play it to just play it. That’s the great thing about sports: you play to win, and I don’t care if you don’t have any wins. You go play to win. When you start tellin’ me it doesn’t matter, then retire. Get out! ‘Cause it matters.”
The same thing should apply here for a coach… any coach… no matter what the score of a game, you play as if the next down counts because it does. You play the game to do your best at all times.
Now, in reality is that always going to occur? Probably not. BUT, for a coach to actually admit he was just playing the final quarter out just so the team could get out of Dodge… that should have never had happened.
Fans saying a team is just playing out the string is one thing. Reporters, too. But a coach admitting that he just gave up? That should never happen.
2) Who are your “early” Rookie of the Year picks and why?
Chad: To me I think it’s an All-Saints show as for Offense… I have Alvin Kamara beating out Kareem Hunt for the award although both are certainly deserving and could be co-rookies if necessary.
For the Defense I think Marshon Lattimore’s play on Defense has put him ahead of the pack of guys like Pittsburgh’s TJ Watt.
Joe: On offense, I’m going with Kareem Hunt, even though he kind of slowed down since his very good start earlier in the season. The last couple of weeks he kinda jumpstarted back into the conversation for Offensive Rookie of the Year and I think it will be enough to get him the award.
On defense, I just like Eddie Jackson… I mean what’s not to like from this rookie safety: 52 tackles, 2 INT, and 3 FR.
3) The Arizona Cardinals have placed Adrian Peterson on Injured Reserve. He is 32 and has been injured in each of the past two seasons.
Is Peterson’s career at a cross roads? Should he seriously think retirement or is there something still out there for Peterson to either prove or play for?
Chad: I think in the flashes he has shown that in the right system he can be a huge asset to a team. New Orleans was not nearly the right solution for him.
Joe: I guess in the right situation… with an offensive coach who has a game plan that fits AP’s running ability in it… Peterson could still be a useful piece of a team’s offense, but considering his recent injuries, as well as the time he was forced to sit on the sidelines due to suspension, maybe it is time he seriously gave thought to retiring from the game. He really doesn’t have a lot to prove any more. His legacy is what it is. He presently stands twelfth all time on the career rushing list (12,276) and can probably pass Jim Brown (12,312) for tenth all-time in his last two games, so he is a Hall of Famer when it is all said and done. So, why subject yourself to any more punishment than is needed?
The only real thing he could still play for would be that elusive championship ring. But unless someone like Bill Belichick come a knocking on his door… he ain’t gonna ever get that.
4) As of this being written (Friday 11/15) Antonio Brown has 9,886 career receiving yards in eight seasons. He will be 30-years old in July.
What is his ceiling… Challenging Jerry Rice’s 22,895 or destined to be somewhere in the top ten all-time in receiving yards?
Simply put, how good a player is Brown now … best in the NFL? … and how good/great (barring injuries) a player can he be?
Chad: To me I have had him in the top 3-5 as far as MVP for the league this year, right now he is the most dynamic WR in the game. I don’t know if he will challenge any of Jerry’s records being 30 already. He’s just under 7,000 away from second which I think should be the goal to attain.
Joe: Until this week (calf injury and will not play) I was going with Brown as my longshot MVP. Now, I think he can kiss any chance of that goodbye. But, that shows what I think about Brown’s football capabilities.
I’m not sure anyone will ever challenge Rice’s record… so that’s probably not gonna happen with Antonio brown either. He will be 30 by the time next season rolls around, so unless he plays at a very high level for the next ten years (at least 1300 yards a season?) he ain’t ever gonna get into Rice’s atmosphere… at least as far as total yardage.
I will say this, if he can play for the next five years at his current level… he will be in the conversation as a top five receiver all-time.
5) Recently, quarterback Robert Griffin III has said he (1) he rejected offers from Arizona and Baltimore to sign in the offseason and (2) still wants to play in the NFL.
How much do you believe RG III about getting offers from two NFL teams AND then turning both down?
And, if he were to return to the NFL, do you think he has any chance to be successful?
Chad: Hey RG III is still around, I don’t see why he would lie about that, I just think his knee issues and injury history he would not be successful in the league
Joe: I’m not totally convinced he got actual offers to play as much as there might have been inquires about his availability and a hint at maybe a quiet tryout.
Having said that, if he were to return to the NFL, and considering some of the present players teams have at QB, I would give him about a 40-60 chance at being successful in the NFL. And then who knows… hell, if Jim Plunkett, Trent Dilfer and Joe Namath, just to name a few, can QB a team to a win in a Super Bowl, then why not RGIII if he lands on the right team?
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