Archive for the ‘Albert Haynesworth’ Category

The regular season is here!

September 11, 2009

It is the Friday before Week 1. All this talk, now it is time to play the games. THE REGULAR SEASON IS HERE! God, I love football.

The Skins game. We chatted with some folks over at DC Pro Sports Report to get a sense of what we will be seeing on Sunday. Here are the answers to our questions.

1. Why should we expect the Redskins offense to be better than it was in 2008, when it was anemic? Who is going to make the difference?

A: Maybe you shouldn’t. The Redskins offense is a big unknown. The offensive line should be better, with the addition of Derrick Dockery at guard and some health at offensive right tackle. However, the depth is young and completely unproven. Any injury could be a disaster and the only offensive line I know lucky enough to go a full season [or more] without a serious injury is the Giants offensive line — which is both lucky and good. If Washington’s offense improves in 2009 it will be because the offensive line does not collapse under age and injuries, as it did in the second half of 2008.

2. Everyone knows and respects Haynesworth and Daniels. What should opposing offenses do to attack the Redskins defense?

A: Attack the linebackers in pass coverage. London Fletcher is a tackling machine and a real stud against the run, but he’s not a speed demon and quicker running backs can really exploit him. WLB Rocky McIntosh isn’t great in pass coverage either. SLB Brian Orakpo is extremely quick, but he is still learning the position after starring as a defensive end at Texas, and he looks a bit stiff in pass coverage. The more the Giants can make Orakpo play pass defense instead of rushing the quarterback, the better off the Giants will be. Rookie or not, the Giants must watch Orakpo carefully in all passing situations. He’s scary fast.

3. Is Kelly good enough to play opposite Moss? How do you beat a defense that gives help over the top against Moss and lets the other WR get singled?

A: Kelly fell in the draft last year because of well-known concerns about a history of knee injuries and those concerns were justified when he missed 11 games to injury. He’s healthy now, though, and his decent speed, good hands and great size [6’4″ and 220 lbs] make him an ideal complement to Santana Moss. Of course, whether or not Kelly can stay healthy long enough to do some real damage is another matter entirely. The Redskins can move the ball through the air, even with Moss doubled, with TE Chris Cooley, who caught over 80 passes last year. However, they can’t beat a good team like the Giants with just Moss and Cooley. Someone else will have to step forward — a wide receiver like Malcolm Kelly. If the Redskins receiving options are Moss and Cooley again, Washington’s 2009 offense will look a lot like the 2008 edition.

4. Clinton Portis has had his share of injuries. Will he last the season?

A: Who can say? Portis is still only 28 [hard to believe], but he’s had a ton of carries. If he’s healthy, he’s a top running back who can do everything. The Redskins plan to spell him more this season with Ladell Betts who ran for over 1100 yards in 9 starts in 2006 when Portis missed half the season. The idea is for Portis to get the ball about 300-315 times this year instead of 350 or more. It would help Portis a lot if the offensive line could stay healthy. When the OL was healthy last year, Portis was leading the NFL in rushing. When it fell apart in November, Portis’ health and productivity went with it.

5. Who wins? What score?

A: Washington has more weapons offensively and defensively than it did last year. The offensive line didn’t allow a single sack of Jason Campbell in the preseason, but let’s see how they do in a real game against a big-time defensive line. The Giants are a good team and are playing at home. They should win. I don’t expect a romp like the season opener last year, but I think the Giants win in a close game, something like 20-17. I expect a hard-hitting NFC East battle.

Ultimatenyg back here again. I think the Redskins are fortunate to be playing the Giants in Week 1. It is not who you play but when you play them. And the Giants are vulnerable here early in the season because the defense has not played together. All it takes is ONE miscommunication on defense or one play where CC Brown is subbing in for Johnson/Phillips and all things can go south. If we know Gilbride is dialing up Bradshaw and Boss as an important part of the passing game, if we know that our defensive players are healed, if we know that Wilkinson’s speed is going to be used over Blackburn (who will be “starting”) on passing plays to neutralize Portis/Cooley.. the Giants can roll easily. But if the Giants make a few mistakes and Daniels/Haynesworth wreak havoc, the Skins will be in the game and have a shot. I’ll predict the Giants win a tight one. Wonder likes the Giants to win and cover.

More odds and ends

May 25, 2009

The cost of obtaining Haynesworth may yet exceed 100M for the Redskins… possible tampering charge being investigated by the NFL.

Syracuse Orange play Big Red Cornell today at 1PM in the Lacrosse Championship. (Yes, this is what happens to football fans in May.) Cornell shocked UVA. (Automatic audio.)

Rest for the Weary Interior Defensive Lineman

January 1, 2009
The Ultimatenyg Wife and Daughter made cookies for the New Years Party last night.

The rest will be a positive for the DL- an oppty for Tuck, Robbins and Cofield to get back to their early season energy with a few less bumps and bruises to contend with.

When we lost Osi in August, we knew that was a BIG hurdle to getting another title. Well, here we are. All it means is that the Giants need HELP. They need the offense to get more points. They need the kickoff coverage to help them with field position. Yes, they need the Safety to pickup the RB out of the checkdown, not Pierce. (Wonder agrees, says Pierce should not be on the field on 3rd and long.) They can commit a few less penalties. The Giants have enough to win it all, they just need to be a little tighter from here on in. Gilbride needs to get more than 21 points per game this offseason, it will NOT be enough unless guys like Robbins ARE BACK.

Like we have said before, IF ROBBINS IS BACK IN EARLY SEASON HEALTH, they’ll be on Broadway on Feb 2nd. But when did an interior DL ever finish STRONGER as the season wore on? I am willing to bet that that extra week off for Cofield may have saved him in ways we do not know. Interior DL is like playing Catcher in Baseball. The length of the season is a major grind. The physical demands every game wear you down like no other position on the field. It is not a coicidence that these guys get hurt and eventually cannot play well enough with their injuries and must take a week off to heal.

We looked at the 4 Pro Bowl picks this season (Haynesworth, Jenkins, Ratliff and Williams), added in Cofield and Robbins, and looked at their combined tackles and sacks in the first 11 games and then looked at the same stats in the last 5 games of the season.

Statistic First11 Last5
Starts 100% 84%
Tackles/game 3.1 2.8
Sacks/game 0.52 0.08

So the number of tackles this squad made dropped off by 11% per game. Given that the number of starts also dropped by 16%, you can argue that the run-stopping stayed consistent. But the total number of sacks plummetted from 34 in the first 11 games to 2.5 in the last 5 games, a drop of 84%. These guys simply lose their wheels. ALL OF THEM. I did not inspect the assists/solo tackles ratio, but anecdotally it looked like there were less solos and more assists in the latter part of the season.

EIGHT FOUR PERCENT. THE SACKS DRIED UP. COMPLETELY! For Robbins, his last sack came on October 19th. For Defensive Ends, they may come in “bunches,” but for Defensive Linemen, they come in the earlier part of the season. You can argue, but hey, he got injured! But injuries alone only would account for a 16% dropoff in production, which is almost exactly what we see from the number of tackles. And this dropoff in sacks was for all the probowlers, not just (the alternate Pro Bowler) Robbins.

One factor which cannot be ignored is that Robbins collected 5.5 sacks in his first 6 games vs. weaker competition with a winning percentage of 30.7%. In the last 10 games, the Giants and Robbins faced opponents with a winning percentage of 61.8%. So some of the dropoff in his personal performance may have been related to that variable.

The Giants pass rush misses the push from Robbins up the middle. All teams miss this, but it has been especially acute for the Giants. Even if Robbins does not get the sack, if he getting the forward push this will help Kiwanuka and Tuck because the QB will not be able to step up into the pocket. At this point in the season, all we need is the hurry, knockdown, push. Sacks just confirm the other three and generally cause change of possession.

Separately, if you have a site which tracks INDIVIDUAL HURRIES and KNOCKDOWNS for defensive players, pls let us know.

Phil Simms Week 12

November 23, 2008

1) Jets- Titans. Tough to get to Kerry Collins, Mawae leads that protection. Titans can win football games many ways. No, Jets will not get to Collins. Jets will need to score points and shut down running game of Tennessee. Tony Brown, Albert Haynesworth, rotate all 7 DL, can all rush QB. They get in face of QB, make it harder to see downfield. Jets do so many things on offense, so many different runs and different short passes. Harder to prepare for Jets as season wears on because they are always adding new plays and have such a lengthy list of plays in playbook. Collins has had three runs with three teams now, pretty exceptional. Has proven he can win.

2) Pats-Dolphins. Still question marks about the New England defense, Miami faster, Miami wins a squeaker.

This was a disappointing round for Simms, as he did not even hint at who would win the Jets game, and did not even speak a syllable about the Giants. See remarks made by Simms in the Friday post.

We are going to learn a lot about a lot of teams this weekend. (a) Just like we learned a lot about the Giants running game vs the Ravens, we will get more information about the Giants’ defense (1 sack in last two games) vs a high powered passing game. (b) We will learn a lot about the Cardinals, as Whisenhunt himself admits that today is a test to see where his team is. (c) We will see today whether the Eagles’ season is over should they lose to the Ravens. (d) We will see who blinks in the above games with the Titans, Jets, Dolphins and Pats. (e) Panthers-Falcons, good test for both teams. (f) Packers-Saints Mon night. While a loss by the Packers will not end their season, a loss by the Saints has to put their season on life support.

Latest guess from Francesa is that Burress won’t play and that Jacobs will play.

Phil Simms from London

October 26, 2008

Francesa: “Giants offense has not been crisp” (read between the lines, he says the Giants are the best team in the NFL right now, so that implies they are underachieving, hello Mr. Gilbride.)

World Series: they let the game start at 10:07PM after a 1:30 rain delay. The game ended at 1:50AM. Another fabulous job by MLB. What a freaking embarrassment. So many things that went wrong here. Why is the game starting at 830PM in the first place? They cannot postpone the game because there are not enough warm days left in the calendar because of all of the dilution and playoff games. And what about the simple fact that a 5-4 normal 9 inning game takes 3:43 mins? One large joke. A World Series game ends at 1:50AM. Pathetic excuse for a major league sport. This is your championship and the game ends at 1:50AM! Hellloooo??!!

PHIL SIMMS:

1) Sean Payton great playcaller. Brees terrific, protected well. Saints defense is the problem.
2) Saints have a lot of guys who have tested positive for this steroid cover. Impact from losing McAlister would be huge. (As Giants fans, perhaps it happens sooner than later, so that we see the team implode and get the higher #2 pick.)
3) For both Ben and Eli, they both will see blitz pressure. Both can do well if they get the protection. The 2 teams are very equal except in one place, the Giants OL. The Giants OL is a BIG difference, and that is why “the Giants will win the game.”
4) Colts will not come through vs the Titans on Mon night. Titans DL (read: Haynesworth) is overpowering… if they are overpowering against everyone, they will certainly be overpowering vs the Colts OL, so the Colts will lose.
5) Buffalo comes into MIA and will lose to MIA. Buffalo got dominated by the Raiders for 3.5 Qtrs, so it is hard for me to anoint Buffalo when I have not even seen them ‘dominate’ someone else.
6) Francessa reminded everyone that it was Phil Simms who quickly said when Romo first got hurt that Romo had to lay off playing, to rest and heal that injury or else he risked not getting ready to play. And how now the Cowboys have finally come around to that thinking and are holding Romo out until after the bye (Nov 16).
7) Dallas will not have the passing game vs the Bucs because the Bucs play very well in pass coverage. This means Dallas has to run the ball and be physical. “Dallas does not outhit anyone.” Conclusion- TB will beat Dallas in Dallas this weekend.