Now the Miami Heat can make their own decisions, to win or not to win. They’ve got the tools, but may need the time. Finally the Miami Heat open on their home floor against the Orlando Magic, who certainly through their words both by Howard and Van Gundy have not shown any fear for the New Superstar Team. Initially the Magic may be right, but Wade, Lebron James and Chris Bosh will make you eat some words. This is one of the biggest sports events in Miami history. Time is on their side. The Magic may not look so Magical as the season continues. There’s a new NBA team in Florida, Your Miami Heat.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are without a leader at the key position: Quarterback. It’s hard to believe that the last time the Jags drafted a quarterback was in 2003. No other team in the NFL has let that much time go by without picking up a quarterback in the draft. Now, the problem is really emerging. When the Jaguars are ranked 28th in the NFL passing yards this season, and 27th in net yards passing per play, you obviously have a problem. Jack Del Rio has bee the coach for all eight years of this situation. Ironically when Del Rio was hired, team owner Wayne Weaver said there would be no more “3 yards and a cloud of dust”. Turns out to be the exact description of what they are. At the time in 2003 , when Leftwich was picked, it was James Harris GM who was the “decider”. The following year, the Jags passed over Ben Roethlisberger. Mistake 1 augmented by Mistake 2. In 2008 David Garrard was signed. Started out strong enough, but went downhill. They had awarded him a hugh undeserved and very rushed contract extension, and have paid the price in many ways. Good quarterbacks make for good teams. Jack Del Rio may or may not be around to see who the Jags take in the NFL draft this year. Time will tell.
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The 2nd year coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Raheem Morris called his Tampa Bay club going to play the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, “the best team in the NFC”. Morris reiterated his statement twice this week. Can’t deny, the Bucs have the fewest losses in the NFC, have a top record at 4 and 2, and are 1 game behind the Atlanta Falcons in their own division. His words “Why not Us” have been uttered before, and guess what, it has happened. I do like what I see, Josh Freeman passing, and now Blount, a very physical presence running. Hopefully the Bucs can start getting some points earlier in the game and not have to play catchup each and every game. But if you’re the best as Morris says, you will come up with a “W”.
The Miami Dolphins are going to visit the Cincinnati Bengals, home of the Diva’s Receivers. Brandon Marshall, Miami’s newest receiver admires them, and explains that it’s a “diva thing”. Probably true that we all want to see their celebrations in the end zone if they get there. We want o see outstanding catches, replete with outstretched arms and mad dashes. So Chad Ochocinco, Terrell Owens and Brandon Marshall will exchange admiration and go out to play. Flashy and controversial, the new breed of receivers has brought another great level of entertainment to the NFL game. Of course, you have to score to keep up the allure.
The Kansas City Chiefs came back after 2 consecutive losses to beat the Jacksonville Jaguars, or rout I would say. The Jags two top quarterbacks are out, but the Jacksonville defense was sliced and diced by Matt Cassel, especially to Dwayne Bowe and Thomas Jones who had his second consecutive 100 yard rushing effort. Although the team is only 1 game under .500, Coach Jack Del Rio said their play is unacceptable. Once again his job may be on the line. Shape up in a hurry Jags.
Josh Freeman took advantage of every bit of time he had, and got another come from behind victory for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. the St. Louis Rams. The 1st half Bucs Tight End John Gilmore said was so ugly. The Bucs got 8 yards on 5 carries, gave up 121 yards rushing and had 6 penalties. Pretty much that kind of play spells doom. However, Josh Freeman has come from behind before, 5 times in 15 starts. He said his college coach Ron Prince told him to go out and play 3 1/2 quarteres as good as you can, and then go out to try to be a hero. Great advice, especialy when Rookie LeGarrette Blount had 66 yards in the 2nd half. Nice surprise. He may be the missing link. With Freeman ranked 11th in the league in fourth-quarter passer ratings, never say never. Clutch players play in the clutch. Nice win Bucs.
What a bizarre game/ Miami Dolphins vs. Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Refs. The Pittsburgh Steelers practically handed or mis handled the ball so many times to give the game to the Miami Dolphins. But perhaps the Refs took it away. Ben Roethlisberger clearly fumbled a touchdown away. Also clearly the Miami Dolphins were all over the ball. White ball the players heard. But who said it? Apparently the refs after reviewing the fumbled touchdown could not definitively state the Dolphins had recovered it, albeit all the world could only see white shirts on the ball. Channing Crowder said the refs called a wonderful game for the Steelers. Thus followed a Pittsburgh field goal. Still time, don’t panic Miami. Oh, but they did. Why would Sparano call a time out prior to the 2 minute warning, leaving no time outs? At best Chad Henne is a bit tentative. when the game is on the line, so give him time to settle, use the two minute warning to set up some short safe passes, not run on a team you can’t run on. Then go for a potential winning field goal. Not to be. A bunch of hurried, botched plays. Another home loss. Back to the Road.
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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers not only lost to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, but they may have also lost Kareem Huggins with a serious knee injury. Torn ligaments seems to be the prognosis that left only Cadillac Williams as the tailgate. Obviously the offense needs some running capacity in order to be effective. The question has to be asked and addressed. Is the offensive line doing their job? Answer, no somewhat due to injuries, somewhat due to trades and somewhat due to lack of drafting. Since departing the Bucs, Derrick Ward has had success. So maybe excuses are over for the O Line. Step up, literally Bucs. Buy Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tickets
The Defense of the Miami Dolphins is charging the opposing quarterback with Cameron Wake leading the charge. Apparently Channing Crowder told Wake he would be going to the Pro Bowl this year. According to Crowder, he hasn’t seen anyone get such a good jump as Wake since Jason Taylor. High Praise. Aaron Rodgers might have to begrudgingly put in a vote for Wake after he sacked Rodgers 3 times. The overtime sack was the biggest, pushing the Pack back 5 yards forcing a punt. Great field position for the Fins who went on to kick the winning field goal. It’s good to be a “Wake”.
Willy Nelson must have really been on to something when he wrote his tune “on the road again”. The Miami Dolphins seem to love to travel. Contrary to most teams, the Dolphins thrive and win when not at home. Anthony Fasano practically took the Lambeau Leap. Well now it’s time to return home and figure out how to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers at Sun Life Stadium. One person not in attendance will be Bobby Carpenter, former Bill Parcell’s Cowboy guy who had just too many mistakes, and costly ones resulting in blocked kicks. Thus, he has now been kicked to the road. By contrast, Davone Bess’s overtime play allowed an eventual victory with a game winning drive. Welcome home Tony Sparano and Company. We’re glad you are back. Make the home crowd proud.