Tag Archive: wes welker


Man the energy is electric, in my apartment, because my favorite day of the year is here:  Super Bowl Sunday!  I have been in long favor of making this day a holiday and making the day after an off day for the country, but sadly enough until we get Peyton Manning or Tom Brady to become President it won’t happen.  Now everyone remember after today, please still keep getting together with your friends to do something.  Studies have shown (right here it’s real) that after football season fans go through a bit of depression and sluggishness.  Enough of the public service announcement on to the keys to unlock the Lombardi trophy.

*Disclaimer*  I dislike the Seahawks, because I’m a 49er fan (granted I do like Beast Mode, Russell “Last Name” Wilson, and The LOB, ok I kinda like the team just have to hate them because of fandom), and I’m not a Peyton Manning fan at all, to much credit for not enough playoff wins (before this season).  So I have no real bias unlike last week (I picked the 49ers!).  *Disclaimer*

* Denver Offense Key: Make the Seahawks Safeties have a bad game

The key for this offense will be how Peyton can minimize the effect of the LOB’s safeties.  I know for the last two weeks we have spoke about Richard Sherman and how he is the greatest, but he is only so great because his safeties (Thomas and Chancellor).  They are the best in the League.  Can Peyton confuse Thomas in single high safety formations (which they run a lot).  How much can he get the safeties to come and help in the run game to set up play action.  Chancellor has shut down 2 top 5 Tight Ends (Jimmy Graham and Vernon Davis) in the playoffs, if Chancellor can go 3 for 3 by stopping Julius Thomas it will hurt Peyton and the offense.  So Peyton has to move these safeties and create match ups he can exploit to free WRs or at least make the reads difficult for Thomas and Chancellor.

* Seattle Offense Key:  Feed the Seahawks WRs Skittles and abuse Champ Bailey

It hurts to say this but you have to make Champ Bailey pay.  It’s no way in hell the Broncos should let Lynch go off, if they do the game is already over.  If they stop Lynch the Seahawks need an answer, enter Harvin, Tate, Baldwin, and Kearse.  These WRs need to go Torrey Smith on Champ Bailey (Here is what I’m talking about).  Last year we saw Bailey can’t keep up with speedy WRs anymore and his time off this year with injuries doesn’t help that.  You have to get the Broncos in man 2 man looks with little safety help and exploit it.  You may only see that look 7-10 times in the game and for the Seahawks to win they have to make them pay at least half of the time they see that look.

*Denver Defense Key:  Don’t let a bit player become a star

You know you have to stop “Beast Mode” Lynch, you know you have to keep “Short Stack” Wilson in the pocket and not let him turn into Russell “Houdini Tarkenton” Wilson.  What will cost you is if you let a role player beat you, ala Desmond Howard (Super Bowl XXXI), or Timmy Smith (Super Bowl XXII).  Keep the role player just that “role players”, no rising stars allowed.  The Seahawks Offense is not as dangerous as other offenses the Broncos have faced, so don’t take them lightly.  If I had to choose who would be the player to step for the Seahawks I would say it would be Baldwin with the extra attention Harvin will get.

*Seattle Defense Key:  Let Peyton be Peyton

I know I have lost a lot of you with this one.  Or I might have lost all creditability now, but hear me out.  We all know the thought of Peyton choking during big games, but when I say let Peyton be Peyton I mean pressure Peyton to make quick decisions, or errant throws.  Take advantage of Peyton’s hate of a clustered pockets by getting pressure up the middle.  Now it wont effect Peyton in the 1st-3rd quarters, but if the game is close down the stretch you will start seeing the effects of that pressure.  When it’s close in big games Peyton has a tendency to get ultra conservative which you can use to your advantage and jump a route ala Tracy Porter.

So there you have it.  Lets see what happens at 6:25pm.  I’m choosing the Denver Broncos to win, because I just think with John Elway’s mentoring and confidence it is Peyton Manning’s year and he wont show the old Peyton attributes.

The best thing that could happen is if Richard Sherman jumps a route and takes it to the house!  OMG!!! We might get another Promo about Peyton throwing “ducks”.  Or if Richard Sherman jumps a route and misses a badly thrown “duck” and the Broncos score the game winner.  Either way “Are We Ready For The End of Football…  This Year”.

Written By:

Jason "Big J" Allen  @UnsportsmenBigJ

Jason “Big J” Allen
@UnsportsmenBigJ

Do you have a love for Man Stuff Fun Stuff, sports, entertainment, and/or just life convos follow me @UnsportsmenBigJ  I also will be tweeting during the Game, with a beer in the other hand!  Cheers!

 

By: Jason “Bg J” Allen

Follow me @UnsportsmenBigJ

As sports fans we sit around and argue about who is the greatest and who is the best in their prime.  At the end of the day we will never know but it is fun to speculate, so I decided to take an argument that the UnSportsMenMic team have argued a lot about.  Cool Joe vs Tom Terrific: Ultimate Grudge Match.

Now I know initial reaction from everyone that is not a Patriots fan is screaming JOE MONTANA! Period, point blank, end of discussion.  Yet I feel differently, I tend to lean toward Tom Brady so let the controversy begin.  I will look at who made their offensive talent better, who had the better overall team (defense), better coaching, durability, career achievements, and the covenant “Clutch” to make my argument.

            Let’s start with the fact that I’m a Niner fan so we can’t accuse me of bias because the bias would say Cool Joe all day.  Yes I root against Tom getting his 4th ring so he won’t tie Joe.  Yet that’s a perfect place to start Super Bowls and rings.  Joe has been to 4 and won 4, while Brady has been to 5 and won 3.  Now, everyone is saying easy win for Joe, but hold on for one second.  Montana won his first ring with a good supporting cast (Remember Rice was not with the team for the first 2 rings).  Montana made offensive stars out of Dwight Clark, and Fred Solomon at WR.  I bet no one can even name the RB on that 1981 team…  Exactly so again Montana was the star.

This is no different then Brady during his first run, Troy Brown, David Patten at WR, Kevin Faulk, and Antowain Smith at RB.  Again neithter had great talent, but both pushed their teams higher.  We all know the history of the Niners, eventually Montana got weapons like Rice, John Taylor, Roger Craig, and even Brent Jones.  Tom Brady did get help in the way of Randy Moss, and Corey Dillon.  Now he won a ring with Dillon, but was 0-1 with Moss.  I know the masses are clamoring for Wes Welker, but I’m sorry Brady made him; he was a nobody in Miami.  So for overall talent I call it Montana. Tom Brady has won with a bunch of no names and continued to be successful.  So Tom Brady wins making his teammates better.

Another knock people will throw Brady’s way is that he won his Super Bowls with great defenses and Montana led the team to Super Bowls with great offense.  Not so fast, in Montana’s 14 seasons with the Niners the defense averaged 10th in total defense.  Now with this ranking of 10th they have only ranked lower than 15th in 3 seasons (20th in ’79, 27th in ’80, and 21st in ’82).  So the defense has been extremely solid in Montana’s tenure.  In Brady’s 13 years with the Patriots the defense has an average rank of 17th; they have only been over 15th in 6 out of his 13 years.  So Brady has never had the Defenses Montana had, especially lately.  So my edge goes to Brady again for winning with a Defense not as dominate as Montana.

Now we go to coaching.  I think in general you give the edge to Bill Walsh, but in this argument you REALLY give the edge to Bill Walsh.  Walsh was an offensive coach compared to Belichick’s defensive minded coaching, which helps a QB like Montana.  Secondly Walsh changed the NFL offensively, with the West Coast offense.  Now I know the Football minds are yelling, “Belichick with the 2 set TE’s with athleticism is changing the game.” Before you jump off a cliff the 2 TE set is a function of Formation 2 in the West Coast Offense that used a H-Back (TE/FB remember Tom Rathman and William Flyod) and a TE in the formation so again a creation of the West Coast and Walsh.  Let’s not forget the great scouter of talent Walsh was (we have talked about Bill Belichick’s lack of draft impact).  Walsh had a great eye for talent, Montana goes down and he had a Hall of Famer, Steve Young (who he traded for from the Buccaneers), ready as a back up.  Brady goes down, and yes they go 11-5 with Matt Cassel, but we know Cassel was a scrub and the Pats missed the playoffs.  This also lends to the thought of Montana having a better overall team then Brady.  Better coaching edge is Montana, which means a win for Brady, because again he carries more of the burden for his team’s success.

My next argument is durability, and I know “QB’s wear dresses in this era” is what all the meat heads are saying.  Yes it was a tougher league in the Montana day so I take that in account, but Montana was a small build and you could knock him out of games.  Ask how the Bears and Giants attacked him.  Montana in his career has missed 25 games, missed one entire season in ’91 and played one game in ’92.  Brady has missed 17 games and 16 were in ’08.  Before the injury Brady was considered Eli Manning like in taking a punishment and still throwing strikes.  Montana was the same way in his prime.  Yet by pure numbers Brady is a bit more durable.  Let’s call this a tie.

Next, let’s look at awards over a career:

Awards

Joe Montana

Tom Brady

MVP

2

2

Super Bowl MVP

3

2

All-First Team

6

2

Off. Player of Year

1

2

Comeback Player of YR

1

1

Edge

MONTANA

So yes the edge is Montana, because of the All-Pro NFL First Team.  Brady lost a lot of these because of Peyton Manning’s statistical regular season dominance.

Now our last thing to take in account is “The Clutch” performances.  Brady has 27 4th Quarter comebacks to Montana’s 31.  So you would say case closed right?  Wrong Brady in Game Winning Drives has 38 and Montana has 33.  So if you need one drive to win it all, Brady is your man.  Joe Cool over the course of a comeback is more dominate. So I have to say here is another wash/tie.

So to recap, these are both Great QB’s and when it is said and done we may be looking at 1 and 2 or 1A, and 1B.  Yet if you break it down, Montana had better supporting cast (especially in a no salary cap era), better coaching offensively, better Defense, and Montana has more career achievements.  I think the durability and “Clutch” argument is a wash.  So for me Brady is the better QB, he has made less talent better, had worse offensive coaching, and a worse defense.  Being honest the difference between Brady having 4 or 5 rings has been the lack of Defensive talent and dynamic offensive playmakers.  Agree or Disagree?  Tell me what you think.

Jason "Big J" Allen  @UnsportsmenBigJ

Jason “Big J” Allen
@UnsportsmenBigJ

I have trouble doing this blog.  Sitting down and writing what I would say on this subject.  I see this lot of ways (so I asked Jason not to edit it to much and leave it a bit unfocused, because that is how I was and am while writing this).  I look at the issue not just Old timers playing with less for less in a physical game.  But what is the worth and cost of creating memories.  Also looking at the culture we have built around the tough guy.

Today owners live for profit.  If you’re a GM, coach, or player it is a “what you have done for me lately” League.  You can be the best at what you do but you can cost too much, ask Wes Welker.  I’m totally old school football but the game has changed, which means I have to also.  As physical and as strong as players are now health is an issue.  We can’t play dumb any more; if you play football you have a shorter life span with more health issues than the average person.  But they choose this life, they knew the risk (or did they) so should they be compensated?  Yes. With all the side effects we know about now. Nobody put themselves on the line more than the guys in football back in the day (remember leather helmet days, and not to mention the ability to tackle quarterback during any part of a play, because he wasn’t protected).  Most of them had to have a part time job… excuse me FULL TIME JOB just to play football.  These were the PROS.  You played till you couldn’t then you got up rubbed some dirt on it and played.

As far as compensation what is too little and what is too much?  A 250,000 minimum to little over 10 million a year too much?  We are all to blame.  Why?  Because we idolized these Gladiators, the question rather should be how you compensate or put a price on MEMORIES.  As a kid watching or playing in the yard imitating your favorite players, some or most of you would say that’s priceless, but these actions and memories were influenced by the fore fathers of the sport.  They built the love affair we have with the game now.  There would be no prima donna today without them. Too many millionaires, but not enough cents, if this game has ever touched you then they are owed, because of their sacrifice.

Us vs Them, one winner, and team first, we called that something…  Oh yeah PRIDE!  Playing hurt, knowing that tomorrow at work is going to suck.  Have you ever got around on a sprained ankle, a broken leg, or torn ACL?   Ouch!  Just playing in pick up sports you got hurt but played.  It’s just something you do.  It’s your boys looking at you saying “can you go”, and something in you just says “yes”.  Any weekend warrior knows this.  Competition, Adversity, it’s what sports are built on. You’re no where near getting paid but you play and you get hurt.  Now if you have this mentality, where do you think you picked it up at?  Usually from the old school tough guys in sports, you even knew that tomorrow you would be limping, swollen, and/or in a cast, but yet you still played.  Why, because showing weakness is not becoming of an athlete.

The athletes in the game today are incredible, so accurate, so high speed, so powerful, so dangerous, and so knowledgeable about the effects of the game on their future and just like the old guys they’d play anyway.  The question is not playing hurt, but how many times…  in a row will you be willing to play hurt.  Do they deserve a life after football, because they know the risk? Yes!  What kind of life?  Are they paid too much?  Will football ever be safe?   Should the NFL try to be safer?  No good answers but what is fair, I just don’t want to see a world without football.  So where will the line be drawn, because as long as there is fans there will always be players giving up everything including their futures.

My idol Roger Staubach retired because of concussions in ’79.  He had 9 or 10 officially, and who knows how many unofficially?  He is a successful businessman today, so the studies are not 100% in identifying what, how many, and what kind of person will eventually have CTE, or other health issues in the future.  If they did figure out they can detect it early on still begs the question would players quit or play through it?  That is my point, that sports has fostered an environment where playing through, or getting back ASAP is the only thing acceptable.  Hell what would you do when your boys need you out there and the person in the mirror wants to be out there.  When you’re competitive “I QUIT” are the hardest two words, not just to say but actually do.

Just sayin’

JD

Race in Sports Part 1 Football

When a person scores a touchdown, do you cheer a little harder because he looks like you? Probably not, but does race play a part in what sports you watch or how you view players? In the pros, we have seen a one hit wonder like Peyton Hillis make it to the Madden cover…then we may never hear his name again. Did he deserve it? Or was the NFL itching for a white running back? Have fans become mindful of race in a world of sports where the team aspect makes everyone equal?

Let’s throw away college sports, because there is something spiritual in the worship of college athletics. I will stick to the professional level instead, and our first stop is the NFL. The NFL is a totally different beast from all other organized sports. Football has become America’s Sport (sorry baseball, move over) and the NFL is so dominant that even races not represented much in the league (Hispanic and Asian) still watch the NFL.

The Jets saw a boost in viewership with Mark Sanchez. Was it because he was a high draft pick who was coming from a west coast school? (I’m talking about USC. That stands for Southern California for all of you SEC heads who can only see USC as South Carolina.) Was this increase in viewership because he was playing in the Big Apple? Or was it because he is Hispanic?

Another thing that makes the NFL a different case stems from the fact that a majority of the big names in the league are white (players like the Mannings or Tom Brady, and owners like Robert Kraft or Jerry Jones). However, I still feel that if a white athlete excelled at playing in a position that was considered out of the norm (wide receiver, running back, or cornerback) we would see a different look. We do have Wes Welker, but do we slight him because he plays the slot and not on the outside ala Calvin Johnson? Or is Wes Welker slighted because he is white? When was the last time we had a white wide receiver that we all agreed upon? Ed McCaffrey? See above for Peyton Hillis on running backs.

Even at the thought of a black quarterback, we view them as more athletic runners than pure passers. We forget about Warren Moon and Doug Williams. We certainly forget about the less successful Bryon Leftwich and Charlie Batch. Donovan McNabb felt tremendous pressure to change into a pure pocket passer, which I felt hurt his overall game.

I looked up the demographics for the NFL and for (what I think we can all agree) are the five cities in which football is the most popular. The table below gives you the info at a glance:

 

  Non-Hispanic White Non-Hispanic Black Non-Hispanic Asian Hispanic
Chicago 31.00% 32.00% 5.00% 28.00%
Pittsburgh 64.00% 25.00% 4.00% 3.00%
Dallas 29.00% 25.00% 3.00% 40.00%
Green Bay 86.00% 1.00% 4.00% 7.00%
Baltimore 64.00% 30.00% 2.00% 4.00%
NFL 31.00% 66.00% 2.00% 1.00%

 

With the exception of Green Bay, those numbers are pretty diverse. Looking at this breakdown lends credit to the thought that the NFL has the most diverse fandom. Dallas and Chicago boast a high representation of the Hispanic population (40% and 28% respectfully) and both are traditional NFL cities.

My thought is that the NFL is untouchable in regards to race and fandom. We will see in time if the Hispanic and Asian representation will emerge more with the NFL trying to become more international (outside the country game every year). Still we could put Cheese Heads (Packers), or Purple People Eaters (Vikings), with a Orange Crush (Broncos), running through a Steel Curtain (Steelers) to a Fearsome Foursome (Rams), that gives me a No-Name De Fense (Dolphins) out on the field and everyone will still watch. I do think we have stereotypes of positions, and these stereotypes definitely hurt the white athlete.  What do you think?  Is there a reverse racism in the NFL at certain positions?  I really would like everyone to comment on this thought.

 

Jason

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