Friday, June 29, 2007

Rex for McNabb

This is long post, I apologize in advance. However, if you want to post something at least skim through all of the details.

There has been a lot of rumors floating around about McNabb returning to his home town Chicago Bears this off-season. The remarks by Tommie Harris further fueled the story. It’s all talk, but the bottom line is would you make a straight-up trade? I wouldn't.

McNabb is a very good NFL QB. His numbers are great, but he will turn 31 during the season, he is coming off a serious injury and has had two back-to-back seasons cut short by injury. On top of that, he has been to as many Super Bowls as Rex.

Rex is just starting to emerge. He was inconsistent last year, but showed that he can put up some big numbers. He will turn 27 this year and is just coming off his first season as the full-time starter.

McNabb was booed by the Philly fans when he was first drafted in 1999. After a rocky 1999 season, he took over as the full time starter in 2000. Philly finished 11-5 and made the playoffs as a Wildcard Team. He threw 21 TDs and 13 interceptions. The Philly D was great that year (ranked #4, gave up 15.3 points/game). McNabb won his first playoff game against Tampa, before losing in the divisional playoffs to the Giants. His stats in that game: 20-41 (48.8%) for 181 yards, 1 TD, 1 Int, 59.1 QB rating.

In 2001, Philly won the NFC East and again finished 11-5. He threw 25 TDs and 12 interceptions. The Philly D was again great that year (ranked #2, gave up 13 points/game). McNabb won in the wildcard and divisional playoff rounds. In the NFC Championship game he lost at home to St. Louis. His stats in that game: 18-30 (60%) for 171 yards, 1 TD, 1 Int, 73.1 QB rating.

In 2002, Philly won the NFC East and had home field in the NFC playoffs with their 12-4 record. He missed 6 games due to injury, but still threw 17 TDs and 6 interceptions. The Philly D was great that year again (ranked #2, gave up 15.1 points/game). McNabb won in the divisional round. In the NFC Championship game he lost at home again, this time to Tampa. His stats in that game: 26-49 (53.1%) for 243 yards, 0 TD, 1 Int, 58.5 QB rating.

In 2003, Philly won the NFC East and again had home field in the NFC playoffs with their 12-4 record. McNabb threw 16 TDs and 11 interceptions. The Philly D dipped but was still solid (ranked #7, gave up 17.9 points/game). McNabb won in the divisional round. In the NFC Championship game he lost at home again, this time to Carolina. His stats in that game: 10-22 (45.5%) for 100 yards, 0 TD, 3 Int, 19.3 QB rating.

After 3 straight home losses in the NFC Championship game, 2004 was the year that Philly finally broke through. Thanks to TO, McNabb had his best year as a pro. The Eagles torched the NFC East and again had home field in the NFC playoffs with their 13-3 record. McNabb threw 31 TDs and 8 interceptions. The Philly D was great again (ranked #3, gave up 16.3 points/game). McNabb got through the NFC playoffs but lost to New England. His stats in that game: 30-51 (58.8%) for 357 yards, 3 TD, 3 Int, 75.4 QB rating.

McNabb got hurt in 2005 and 2006 and missed the end of both seasons.

Rex’s first year as the starter ended with a trip to the Super Bowl. The Bears D was ranked #3 and gave up 15.9 points/game. His numbers in the Super Bowl: 20-28 (71.4%) for 165 yards, 1 TD, 2 Int, 68.3 QB rating.

Bears fans need to just be patient, the numbers do not support any need to change to McNabb.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Couple of Positive Rex Notes

His high school is going to retire his number tonight. A nice gesture for a nice guy.

I forgot to post this up, but Rex won the NFL's Ed Block Courage Award. Quoting from the link:

"The prestigious award is presented to one player on all 32 NFL teams who best exemplifies a commitment to sportsmanship and courage and serves as an inspiration in the locker room.

The recipients of the honor symbolize professionalism, great strength and dedication, and are considered community role models."

The NFL recognizes Rex is a solid citizen and a very good player.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

TO vs. Brandon Lloyd

JKD and I have been having a bit of a debate about TO. I argued that TO would have been a good signing for the Redskins last off-season. The Redskins love to bring in splashy guys and pay them a ton of money. That is their M.O. JKD said it would be a bad move because he was a head case. The point became moot when Dallas signed TO to a 3 year, $25M contract in March 2006. The contract was well structured because it only guaranteed $5M.

TO's stats last year: 85 receptions for 1180 yards and 13 TDs (led the NFL in TD receptions)

He clearly helped Dallas make the playoffs.

Dallas took a chance on TO, but at least Dallas knew that they were paying a player who had proven himself on the field. In 7 games in 2005, TO had 47 receptions for 763 yards and 6 TDs. In 2004, 77 receptions for 1200 yards and 14 TDs

Now let's compare that to what the Redskins actually did to shore up their weak receiving corps. Instead of getting TO as an unrestricted free agent, the Redskins traded their #3 in 2006 and their #4 in 2007 for Brandon Lloyd - who by the way is as much of a head case as TO. It was well known that he was a problem player with an attitude in San Francisco, and he did not have the resume of TO.

To make matters worse, the Redskins tore up Lloyd's perfectly good NFL contract and gave him a brand spanking new 7 year, $29M contract with $11.5M guaranteed. They based his value on his "outstanding" 2005 season when he had 48 receptions for 733 yards and 5 TDs. For all the money that they paid this stiff, they got the same B.S. antics that he pulled in San Francisco, and he only produced 23 receptions for 365 yards and 0 TDs

I suppose one could argue that Antwaan Randle El was also brought in, and his stats should be considered. They signed him to a 7 year, $31.25M contract with $11.5 guaranteed. His Redskin production: 32 receptions for 351 yards and 3 TDs. Antwaan earned his big new contract based on his "greatness" in Pittsburgh in 2005 where he had 35 receptions for 558 yards and 1 TD.

Last year, Lloyd and Randle El combined for 55 receptions for 716 yards and 1 TD. Not quite TO numbers.

No reason to really revisit the whole "TO is a bad guy" stuff. The Redskins didn't care about bad guys with attitude problems. They signed Lloyd.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Bears Starting QBs Since 1985

Since the legendary 1985 Bears, Chicago has started 24 different men at QB over the last 22 years. Here are some of those players.

Jim McMahon, Mike Tomczak, Steve Fuller, Doug Flutie, Jim Harbaugh, Peter Tom Willis, Will Furrer, Erik Kramer, Steve Walsh, Dave Kreig, Rick Mirer, Steve Stenstrom, Moses Moreno, Shane Matthews, Cade McNown, Jim Miller, Chris Chandler, Henry Burris, Kordell Stewart, Jonathan Quinn, Craig Krenzel, Chad Hutchinson, Kyle Orton, Rex Grossman

Chicago has a chance to finally have a franchise QB that could provide stability for a decade. But, someone who regularly posts here, believes the Bears should move on to number 25, Brian Griese. Never mind that Griese couldn't stick in Denver, Miami, or Tampa Bay before joining the Bears.

Look, I like Griese and think he is a capable backup, but he has proven he is not a franchise QB.

TO Discussion for JKD

Here is the post:

http://robsobs.blogspot.com/2005/12/tos-birthday-bash.html

I did not want him for the Bears, but looking at my quotes in context, it seems clear to me that I wanted to jab the Redskins. Danny Boy loves to make a splash w/players. That said, TO certainly helped Philly make the Super Bowl and helped Dallas make the playoffs last year.

This is the link for when I said the Redskins should sign TO.

http://robsobs.blogspot.com/2005/11/redskins-should-sign-to.html

This is the link for what I thought about TO's value to a team.

http://robsobs.blogspot.com/2005/12/just-shut-up-to.html

This is the link when TO signed w/the Cowboys.

http://robsobs.blogspot.com/2006/03/to-is-cowboy.html

I don't like the Redskins, but I certainly think they could have benefitted from TO's services. There is nothing unreasonable in what I wrote.

Another Republican Senator Wants Out

One day after Republican Senator Lugar gave his 50 minute speech arguing for an end to the President's Iraq War nonsense. Republican Senator George Voinovich has joined him in calling for an end to the disaster.

50 High Schools Stand Up to Bushie

Congress cannot stand up to Bushie, but 50 high schoolers gave him a handwritten note telling him to stop torture of foreign detainees.

Bushie says we don't torture, but that is only if you accept his "definition" of torture. Kids know what is going on, no matter what Bushie says. It is embarrassing.

More American Blood on Bushie's Hands

We know he has been wrong on everything related to Iraq and that the latest "surge" is not working. Katrina was horribly mishandled. But, now we are learning about another failure of Bushie's administration that will cost the lives of thousands of Americans.

The EPA and OSHA provided misleading information to New Yorkers about the safety of their homes and the air at Ground Zero in an effort to rebuild economic confidence. Former EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman testified and answered questions yesterday about her role in the debacle which has now resulted in 70 percent of a sample of Ground Zero cleanup workers and New Yorkers who live close to Ground Zero now have respiratory problems. The asbestos-laden dust is likely to end with hundreds if not thousands of lung cancer deaths.

Iraqi War Now Coming to an End?

Conservative Senator Richard Lugar from "Red State" Indiana - the ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee - gave a 50 minute speech on the floor of the Senate in which he said it was time to essentially end the war in Iraq and redeploy the troops.

It is a huge event that most Americans will not recognize for its importance. However, this may be the moment that truly changes the President's failure in Iraq. Other Republicans may decide to join him in pushing for an end to the operational disaster.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Vasher Signed to 5-Year Extension

Looks like Bears Pro Bowl Corner Nathan Vasher is in for the long-term.

Terms were not announced, but I am sure they did not pay him Clement money. It is quite likely that Vasher took less from the Bears than he would have gotten on the open market. Another great front office move.

Rex Compared to Other Super Bowl QBs

I am going to post up a comparison of Rex's numbers as a first year starter versus other Super Bowl QBs. I'll look at the NFC QBs first.

Today's comparison - Matt Hasselbeck (lost SB), Donovan McNabb (lost SB)

Rex's Numbers:

73.9 passer rating, 262-480 (54.6%), 3193 yards, 23 TDs, 20 ints, sacked 21 times, 5 lost fumbles.

Got to the Super Bowl at age 26, fourth year in NFL, first year as the starter.

Super Bowl Numbers: 20-28 (71.4%) for 165 yards, 1 TD, 2 Int, 68.3 QB rating.


Hasselbeck's Numbers:

70.9 passer rating, 176-321 (54.8%), 2023 yards, 7 TDs, 8 ints, sacked 38 times, 2 lost fumbles

Got to the Super Bowl at age 30, seventh year in NFL, fifth year as the starter.

Super Bowl Numbers: 26-49 (53.1%) for 273 yards, 1 TD, 1 Int, 67.8 QB rating.


McNabb's Numbers:

77.8 passer rating, 330-569 (58%), 3365 yards, 21 TDs, 13 ints, sacked 45 times, 4 lost fumbles.

Got to the Super Bowl at age 28, sixth year in NFL, fifth year as the starter.

Super Bowl Numbers: 30-51 (58.8%) for 357 yards, 3 TD, 3 Int, 75.4 QB rating.


Looking over the numbers, it is clear that Rex's numbers were better than Hasselbeck, but McNabb had better overall numbers in his first year as the starter. Rex was the youngest of the three to make the Super Bowl and he did it in his first year as the starter - it took both Hasselbeck and McNabb a number of years to get there. When they did get there, none of the three had stellar numbers.

Tank is Out

Tank Johnson was stopped at 3:30 am on Friday night. Today the Bears released him.

I suspect that he was drunk. It is a privilege to play for the Chicago Bears and in the NFL, not a right. The Bears supported Tank and he simply could not control himself. I'm sure he'll turn up somewhere else (Washington?), but the Bears were left with no choice.

Darth Cheney and Gonzo the Clown

Good piece in Newsweek about Cheney's refusal to comply with the law and Bush's Executive Order on allowing the National Archives to assess how Executive Branch offices secure classified documents. Cheney claims that he is part of the Legislative Branch because he is President of the Senate. Yet, he claims Executive privelege for virtually all of his secret affairs. It is a complete joke.

Attorney General Gonzo was asked to investigate in January, but has done nothing. I guess he doesn't want to upset the Dark Lord.

In a somewhat related matter, the Post is running some in-depth stories about how Dick Vader, Darth Cheney, Shooter, or whatever you want to call the VP has basically carved out a unique niche and how he has largely set the President's public policies. Contrary to what the White House has claimed, "aggressive interrogation techniques" (i.e., torture), detainee rights, and the use of Gitmo were vigorously debated and in fact there was a lot of dissent within the administration about abandoning the Geneva Conventions, creating the legal black hole of Gitmo, and allowing torture techniques to be used.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Cedric Benson

Obviously I believe in Rex and expect him to improve. I also think the Bears will be better on D, even without Briggs and Tank (for at least half the year). I think the biggest question for the Bears will be if they can keep their running game going without TJ. I loved TJ and originally did not like the trade they made with the Jets (swapping 2nd round picks).

However, the Bears took that 2nd round pick and traded it to the Chargers for a later 2nd, 3rd, and 5th round picks. With those picks they drafted DE Dan Bazuin, RB Garrett Wolfe, and FS Kevin Payne. Bazuin is expected to be an impact player this year, Wolfe looks like he is gong to be a third down back, and Payne will likely be a special teamer and provide some depth at the safety position.

It may work out to be a great trade. However, ultimately, it is up to Benson to show that he can carry the load and become a 1200+ yard back. I believe he can, but the proof will come on the field.

Still More Rex - The 2006 NFC Playoffs

Deepie has called Rex a "choker." Nothing could be further from the truth.

Against Seattle, the Bears D had all kinds of trouble and the Bears were losing 24-21 in the 4th quarter at home in what could have ended as another disappointing playoff defeat. In the 4th quarter, Rex put together a drive going 3-5 for 24 yards, with another 24 yards coming via TJ and Benson. Gould kicked the game-tying 41 yard field goal.

In OT, after Seattle couldn't move the ball, on Chicago's first offensive series the Bears faced 3rd and 10 from their 34 yard line. Rex hit Rashied Davis for 30 yards. A couple of short runs later, Gould kicked the 49 yard game winning field goal.

Against New Orleans, the Bears D was again giving up yards - although they were getting turnovers. Rex did not have a good first half, but when it counted he delivered. In the second half, he went 8 for 14 for 128 yards. The Bears were only up 18-14 at the start of the fourth quarter. Rex went 4-4 for 78 yards and threw a 33 yard TD to Berrian in the 4th quarter. That made it 25-14 and the Bears scored two more late rushing TDs to put it away.

Very few NFL QBs have ever delivered like Rex in the playoffs to get to the Super Bowl. That is just a matter of fact.

Tommie Harris was quoted as saying that having McNabb would make the Bears Super Bowl champs. How many Super Bowls has McNabb won? Think of how many times he did not deliver in the NFC Championship Game.

To call Rex a "choker" is just completely false.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Would You Play a QB with These Stats?

First Year: 10 starts, 6 wins, 4 losses, 47.5% completion rate, 1663 yards passing, 7 TD, 14 interceptions, 54.9 passer rating - lost in the wildcard round

Second Year: 14 starts, 12 wins, 2 losses, 56.3% completion rate, 2598 yards passing, 18 TD, 15 interceptions, 76.8 passer rating - lost in the divisional playoffs after a bye

Third Year: 16 starts, 11 wins, 5 losses, 54% completion rate, 3891 yards passing, 22 TD, 23 interceptions, 70.2 passer rating - missed the playoffs

Thursday, June 21, 2007

How Low Will They Go?

Bushie is now at 26 percent approval (Newsweek) - only 3 points away from Nixon's all-time worst.

Congress turns up at 25 percent in Newsweek's poll. However, a new Gallup Poll puts them at an all-time low of 14 percent.

I am not surprised. Economic conditions are worsening, and probably more important right now, Iraq is worsening. Congress had a chance to stand up to Bushie, but they joined with him by providing another $100 billion of funding. Stupid move that is costing them.

Rex Grossman Cont'd

I claim that Rex is supported by the majority of the Bears fans. Deepie and JKD claim I am wrong. There is no scientific poll number to support either position. So let me provide a basis for my opinion.

I believe that the majority of fans support Lovie Smith and have faith in the coaching staff. If he says Rex is the Man, then I believe most fans will go along with that.

I also do not believe that Brian Griese offers anything more than Rex, and certainly Rex has far more upside potential if he continues to improve as he gains experience.

Kyle Orton is a nice young player but is not an option over Rex or Brian.

That said, it seems very unlikely to me that the majority of fans want to dump Rex. That would mean that more than 50 percent of the Chicago Bears' fans would have to think Lovie is wrong and that Brian Griese (or Kyle Orton) are better options than Rex.

Apparently JKD and Deepie must believe the opposite.

End of Bears OTAs

No injuries, everyone is healthy. The Bears have signed most of their picks (unlike most teams). But they still have to get the deals done for their top 2 picks. They have cash and nothing seems to be a problem, so they should be signed and in camp without any trouble.

As for Briggs, he was the only no show. This was expected. Now that he realizes that there is no one out there willing to trade for him and pay him the money he wants, he should reconsider his stand. But that is up to him.

There were articles in the Trib, Sun-Times, and Daily Herald that all say about the same things coming out of OTAs

Lovie says this is his best team ever - I believe it, and don't think is is normal coachspeak. The offense has new weapons. Mark Bradley has looked great (3rd year receiver, who came back last year from knee surgery after looking great in his rookie year); draft picks Greg Olsen and Garrett Wolf' performed as expected; and Devin Hester is making a smooth transition to offense. Hester was a college running back who moved to corner. He can line up in the backfield and out wide.

Another surprise player who may be able to contribute is Josh Allen. Allen played at Maryland, but tore up his knee three years ago and appears to be recovering nicely. We'll see if he can make the team and contribute.

On D, Briggs is out, but second year linebacker Jamar Williams has looked good by all accounts. Alex Brown lost his starting spot. Tommie Harris and Mike Brown are back, so things look good. Arch has apparently been playing pretty well. Charles Tillman is recovered from his nagging back injury. I expect the Bears will try to sign Tillman and/or Vasher to extensions in the summer, but they may want to test the market given the huge contracts that are out there. They may also see what has happened to Briggs and sign.

Finally, Rex has had a good couple of weeks. He is working hard to improve with his new QB coach. He has to improve his consistency and it looks like he is preparing himself to do so.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

More on Peter King's Rankings

I generally like Peter King when he is reporting. As a prognosticator, I think he sucks. A lot of fans got on him for his ridiculous QB rankings. He defends his picks, and as for Grossman he said:

"Grossman played so many poor games last year that, a la Dilfer in 2000, I couldn't justify putting him in the top 20. Maybe he'll be better this year. I don't know. But I'll remind you of an old Parcellsism: I go by what I see. And what I saw of Grossman last year was, basically, a below-average NFL starting quarterback."

We'll see.

More "Progress" in Iraq

It looks like the insurgents have progressed in the number of attacks on the Green Zone.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

There Goes New Years!

Danny Boy bought out Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year and all of the other stuff that goes with it. He'll ruin it.

Maybe he'll have Tom Cruise host and Danny Boy will push the button to drop the crystal apple in Times Square. He'll probably put a sponsor's sign on the apple.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Why Rex Gets Criticized

I came across the following in the Chicago Daily Herald. It is a pretty good overall discussion about Rex.

Also, there is a very good article about Briggs and why he will have to play this year.

QB Rankings

Peter King has his QB rankings out this morning. It is just bizarre. He has Rex down at 27 (just behind JC). He puts Kitna and Cutler in the top 10, but McNabb shows up at 12.

I am sure Rex will prove him wrong. For that matter, I expect Campbell to be better than a lot of guys ahead of him.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

What the F?



Ladies and gentlemen, I give you your 2007 WASHINGTON REDSKINS!

LaCanfora's blog talked about Chris Cooley's lovable "shorts" (they look like bikini bottoms for men to me).

Couple of Bears and Redskins Notes

Free agent running back Chris Brown is down to Chicago or the Titans. He would be a big signing and would provide great insurance if Benson goes down. He is from the Chicago suburbs and is only 26.

Looks like Landry got hit with a paintball in the nuts. It will keep him out of minicamp. Hopefully it won't be a nagging injury and is not too serious. I also hope that it is not a bad sign of things to come for Redskin fans.

Iraqi Shadow War

The U.S. taxpayer is spending billions of dollars for the shadow war that is escalating in Iraq. We all see the official military figures, but behind the scenes there is an escalating shadow war that is being fought by private security contractors.

It is sad that the military is so broken and we have so few troops that Bushie has to hire a bunch of mercinaries to carry out his failing Iraq strategy.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Bushie and Congress Suck

Bushie is hitting all time lows for his approval. He hit 29 percent in the latest NBC/WSJ poll.

Congress is even worse! 23 percent.

Bushie is a known idiot, and Congress has bowed down to him and his idiotic Iraq war policy. When the Dems gave Bushie another $100 billion to play Commander-in-Chief for another year in Iraq, they threw away their credibility.

Imagine how weak they are . . . they bowed down and took it up the rear from a President that has a 30 percent approval rating. On top of that nearly 70 percent of Americans want to see an end to the war and the Dems were elected with a clear mandate to force change in Iraq. They are weak. Pelosi is OK for now. She has worked well with a large and diverse Democratic caucus. It is Reid who has to go.

Surge Not Working

Like it should really be a surprise. Bushie has been wrong on everything and his surge strategy is just another huge mistake. Violence is up and things are worsening.

The Pentagon now basically refers to Iraq as being in civil war.

Libby to Go to Jail . . .

while awaiting appeal. We'll see if Bushie pardons him. He is a traitor at worst and a political hack who pejured himself at best.

Monday, June 11, 2007

More on Rex

I want to be clear. I like Rex and think that he can be a very good NFL QB. Greatness will only come with championships and we will see about that. He was maddeningly inconsistent last year, but I had no problem with that because he is still young and inexperienced. The level of criticism was completely ridiculous, but it was due to the fact that he was playing for a contender. No one would have cared if the team was 5-11.

I expect him to improve this year. Improvement will come in the form of fewer mistakes.

My final argument is that Rex shows great promise as a young player. He set the Bears team record for most 100+ passer rating games in a season with 7. That is a great number, no matter who you are.

As a comparison, here is how some of the top QBs fared on that statistic:

2006
Peyton Manning - 7
Philip Rivers - 6
Tom Brady - 5
Drew Brees - 5
Carson Palmer - 4
Brett Favre - 4
Steve McNair - 3
Vince Young - 2
Jason Campbell - 0

2005
Carson Palmer - 11
Peyton Manning - 10
Matt Hasselbeck - 7
Tom Brady -6
Drew Brees - 6
Trent Green - 5
Jake Plummer - 5
Mark Brunell - 4

If Rex can cut down on the turnovers, he could be something special.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

For JKD

As a followup to our weekend discussion, here is a refresher on our NFL picks from last year:

On 12/1: I was 16-7 (.696) , you were 12-9 (.571)

After the Super Bowl: I was 32-12 (.727), you were 24-18 (.571). Over the last 21 games, I was 16-5 (.762), you were 12-9 (.571).

So over the first 23 games (21 for you, because you missed 2 games), I was better than you, and over the last 21 games I was better than you by a larger margin.

You can go back and look it up - the numbers are what they are.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Complete NFL Ignorance

I give numbers and facts that support my hypothesis that Rex Grossman had a solid year. I base it on looking back over NFL history and examining statistics for the NFL's top QBs in their first and second years as full time starters. There is no factual basis to argue that Rex did not have a solid year last year, given his age and experience.

Someone (who I will not name) tells me that he talked to a couple of ignorant fans, who do now actually know Rex's stats, and says that they all say Rex is terrible. He also reads some of the national press criticisms and then proclaims Rex to be terrible. He even says Brian Griese should be the QB. Never mind that Lovie, the front office, the entire coaching staff, and the Bears players all support and love Rex. Never mind that history is on his side.

At this point, I'm willing to just wait and see what happens this year. I firmly believe Rex will improve because he works hard, and NFL history is on his side. If he doesn't improve then I have confidence that Lovie will make the right move.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Wonderlic

Ever wonder how some of the top QBs did on their Wonderlic tests?

I came across this while I was surfing today. Pretty interesting.

Couple of the more intersting ones:

Rex - 29
JC - 14, 27, 28
Peyton - 25
Brady - 33
Brunell - 22
Vince - 6, 16

Top score is a 50.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Rex vs. JC Comparison

OK, let's compare the two players.

REX:

Age: 26, will be 27 this year.

Draft: 2003, 1st round, 22nd overall selection

Head Coaches: He was drafted by Dick Jauron, who was fired after Rex's rookie year. Lovie took over

Offensive Coordinators: John Shoop (2003), Terry Shea (2004), Ron Turner (2005-2006). They all have very different philosophies.

Injuries: 2004 tore knee ligaments in Week 3 (out for the season). 2005 broke his ankle in second preseason game and only started 2 games including the playoff loss to Carolina.

Career Starts: 27. 8 career starts before last year when he started every game.


JC:

Age: 25, will be 26 this year.

Draft: 2005, 1st round, 25th overall selection

Head Coach: He was drafted by Joe Gibbs, who is the only head coach he has known

Offensive Coordinators: Joe Gibbs (2005), Al Saunders (2006). Have very different philosophies.

Injuries: None.

Career Starts: 7


Basically, JC is where Rex was last year. The advantage JC has going into this year is that he has never had to overcome major, career threatening injuries. Rex has been a pro longer. But he had to deal with more coaching changes, the injuries, and very high expectations because he is playing for a winner.

I don't believe JC will throw as many TD passes as Rex did last year (23), nor do I think he will end up with as many interceptions (20). My guess is that he will end up with 18 TDs and 19 interceptions. I like JC and think he will be a good player, but realistically, he is still very young and is likely to make mistakes.

Rex is going to have to improve on his numbers, but with another year of experience, and being healthy for the first time in his professional career will help. Instead of rehabbing this off-season, he can focus on improving his footwork and fundamentals. That will result in a better, more consistent performance this year. My prediction: 25 TDs and 14 interceptions.

3500 and Counting

We just went over 3500 American soldiers killed in Iraq. The civil war is more bloody than ever for the both American soldiers and Iraqi civilians. There is news that Turkey is preparing to invade northern Iraq to put down Kurdish rebels. Just when you thought Iraq couldn't get worse, it does.

This has got to be one of the least successful occupations in all of history.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Good Rex, Bad Rex

There is no doubt that Rex Grossman needs to work on his consistency. But, I submit to critics (especially JKD) that Rex is just a young guy whose mistakes are not surprising. He will get better with time.

The guy has started a total of 27 games in his career. Among those 27 include 2 playoff wins and the Super Bowl. Not surprisingly he was inconsistent in his first full year as the starter. He did some good things and some bad things.

THE GOOD:

He set the Bears record for most games in a season with a QB rating over 100 with 7 games.
He was 7th in the NFL in TD passes (23).
He was 12th in the NFL in total passing yardage (3193).
He won 13 games.
Most important, he established himself as a leader and is loved by the coaches and players.

THE BAD:

He was 3rd in the NFL with 20 interceptions.
He was 24th in the NFL in passer rating for the season last year (73.9).
He only had a 54.6% completion percentage (28th in the NFL).
He had 5 games with QB passer ratings of 37 or lower (including a 0.0)

I am not sure why folks are surprised that a young guy had some inconsistency. The fact that the Bears play in a major media market and are so good is why he faces so much scrutiny. Half of Chicago wanted to bench him late in the season - not that surprising because the expectations had risen so high given the Bears 13-3 record. Here is how I see it, the average fan does not understand football. and the realities of needing to be patient with inexperienced players. Rex's first season as the full time starter resulted in numbers similar to Peyton Manning's first season.

Peyton: 26 TDs, 28 Ints, 56.7% completion percentage, 71.2 passer rating
Rex: 23 TDs, 20 Ints, 54.6% completion percentage, 73.9 passer rating

Manning went 3-13 as a starter and had some horrible games. Rex was 13-3 and had the pressure of winning on his shoulders.

So in the off-season the Bears hired a new QB Coach who is working with Grossman on his fundamentals - footwork, progressions, decision-making. Here is a story from the Chicago Bears website about Grossman's off-season focus.

This blog entry says it all - "Rex Grossman's Critics are Idiots"

His team loves him. His coach loves him. If he doesn't cut down on his mistakes and does not show significant improvement, he will be letting his team down, and then there is something to talk about. But, he has performed about as well as one should expect.

Monday, June 04, 2007

No Surprise, Bushie's War Escalation is a Failure

As I have said all along - there was no way that Bushie's "Surge" was going to work. Now after 4 months we find that only 1/3 of Baghdad is under control and that more Americans are dying than ever before.

He has been wrong on everything - those who think that Bushie knew what he was doing and that the "Surge" would actually work are just blindly following a proven idiot.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Bushie's War Escalation "Success"

He has "successfully" escalated the war so now more American soldiers are dying. There is no political progress and the number of Iraqis killed in Baghdad as a result of the raging civil war for May was more than it was for January. So much for Bushie's "Surge."

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Bushie is Crazy!

He yelled, "I'M THE PRESIDENT!" to a friend who recently visited him. The guy is nuts.

Peggy Noonan on Bushie

Building on my last post, I was reading the Weekend WSJ this morning and read Peggy Noonan's piece on how Bushie has abandoned his base with his push for legalizing illegals, and doesn't give a damn. Good piece.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Bushie Has Turned on Republicans

Bushie, his allies, and his administration are all painting critics of his immigration reform (i.e., amnesty program) as unpatriotic racists. Typical. He has been arguing that Dems who don't unconditionally support his incompetent war effort are anti-American. But now, it is Republicans that he is calling anti-American.

LeBron (vs. Kobe)

LeBron was awesome last night. Very Jordanesque. He scored 48, but in crunch time he really took over. The 22-year old scored the last 25 points for Cleveland and basically single-handedly beat the Pistons. I have not seen such a dominating performance in a meaningful game since the days of Michael.

Let's make a little comparison to Kobe. LeBron makes his team better - he is not just a guy who scores his points. His teammates love him. If you look over the Cleveland roster and the Lakers roster, it would be hard to argue that LeBron's supporting cast is any better than the one in L.A. It is impossible to argue that Cleveland coach Mike Brown is better than Phil Jackson. Basically, LeBron has the leadership and the talent to win playoff games - Kobe has to still prove he can do it without Shaq-fu.