In today's episode of PSSOM, I look back at 10 predictions/statements/preseason quotes out of yours truly.
10 Yard Fight: Ten Chances to Make One Good Point
1) "Matt Hasselbeck will be up for comeback player of the year." OK, so I started off on one that I look good on. On Sunday, Hasselbeck proved that if he can stay upright, the Seahawks are capable of scoring and looking very impressive. Even their defense played better with him under center.
2) "Buffalo is in trouble. Trent Edwards has been somewhat schizophrenic." This Bills team came out gangbusters against the Patriots in week one, barely losing by a one-point margin. They stuck it to the Buccaneers, before losing in succession to the Saints, Dolphins, and...uhhhhh...the Browns. They lost 6-3! That's a score from a set of tennis! They are in fact in trouble.
3) "Kyle Orton looks as good as he ever did...in Chicago...where he didn't look that great..." See? I can admit when I was wrong. I mean, Orton did look pretty terrible in the preseason at times, but the truth of the matter is that they stripped him of Brandon Marshall and then he hurt his hand. I ripped on him because it was there, but Orton is a guy who can play ball and he is proving to be a leader and an extension of Josh McDaniels on the field.
4) "I'll say it again--Kurt Warner just doesn't look like he is playing his best football right now." Hmmmm...I guess what happens in the preseason stays in the preseason, eh? Kurt Warner has thrown for 1,165 yards and 6 touchdowns thus far, completing 66.3% of his passes and carrying an 89.7 QB rating. The Cards are hanging tough in an AFC West that looks worlds better than the disaster it was a year ago. I would have bet Warner would be done for the year by now after the second week of the preseason. I would have lost that bet.
5) "The Giants are the class of the NFC East and I don't think it is close." This one doesn't go in the books as one of the all-time boldest predictions, but I seem to recall the Cowgirls and the Eagles stealing a lot of headlines this offseason. The Giants are a legit Super Bowl contender. I hate it but Eli looks simply spectacular.
6) "I think a team that will make a huge leap this year is the San Francisco 49ers, but I am not sold on their passing game, and wonder if they can score the points necessary to get into the playoffs..." Does this count as a nice prediction? I watched very San Francisco preseason game and I simply loved what Mike Singletary was doing. I never got the sense this team saw itself as anything less than capable of winning games all season long. And the defense flashed this preseason as well. Patrick Willis is a beast.
7) "...there is plenty to suggest that they (the Redskins) could be this year's version of the Atlanta Falcons." Ouch. This one was just way off. Even if the Skins turn it around, they wouldn't be last year's Falcons. That Falcons' team was pretty good right out of the chute. The Skins have not done very much at all offensively and the defense has not played up to expectations. I was wrong.
8) I picked the Titans to make the playoffs out of the AFC, with these words about Jeff Fisher: "...he rocks a killer 'stache." I stand by my Jeff Fisher thoughts, but the Titans at 0-5 are a prohibitive longshot to get to the postseason.
9) Here was a bad call by me: Alfred Fincher is our top defensive backup. Keep in mind, I made this statement on May 16th. That doesn't make it any less stupid-looking though. Who is our top defensive backup by the way? I would love to hear your thoughts on this in the comments section.
10) I saved the best for last...I had this to say about the Cincinnati Bengals: "I actually like this team to win the AFC North." YEAH! That was on on July 15th, before I had seen any episodes of Hard Knocks and before I had seen Carson Palmer return to the field. Here was my Carson Palmer thought: "If Carson Palmer can return to form--and it says here that he will--then this team will score plenty of points, and they will be able to do it against the defenses in their division and the rest of the AFC." Lots of season left, but this one looks good so far.
Give Me the Numbers, Stat!
I am sitting here watching the Jets-Dolphins game and something about Braylon Edwards reviving his career and reputation in front of my eyes has me thinking positive, hopeful things. I was shocked to see that the Redskins are tied for 5th (with the Steelers) in the NFL in yards per game. We are 9th in scoring defense (3 teams ahead of us have had their bye week.) What has killed us is of course obvious to all who watch: we are 23rd in 3rd down percentage, allowing opposing offenses to convert 41% of their 3rd down attempts. On offense, we only convert 33% of our 3rd down attempts, good for 21st in the league. These are the two stats we need to work on and improve upon if we are going to have any chance to keep the sun from setting on this season. As Bob Dylan sang, "It's not dark yet, but it's getting there."