Monday, January 31, 2011
Today, we posted Jason Witten's Profile in our Cowboys section of the DMN website. He is the 9th in our series of 53 that we will be posting here in the next several weeks.
In case you missed any, here are the links to all of the player profiles that we have posted.
Location: Radio Row
The Mix: People with walkie-talkies are saying that Roger Staubach is in the building. The mix is over.
The Open: If you’re pressed into duty for Scotland, would you fight or would you run? Live from Super Bowl XLV Radio Row. Day 21 of the Dan in a Suit Flipbook. BaD Radio is already on stand-by mode, waiting for Roger Staubach to join the show. Naturally they talk about sneaking their piece into the media center and drinking Norm’s open water.
12:20 – Roger Staubach: The open was cut short as Captain America himself, Roger Staubach, joins BaD Radio. Concerning getting ready for a Super Bowl as a quarterback, Roger says that basically it is the same as it was when he was a quarterback; film prep, game plan installation, etc. But the media portion is something that he can’t really relate to. Roger discusses how he won the Super Bowl MVP award instead of Duane Thomas because the voters were not sure how Thomas would react at the trophy presentation; Thomas refused to talk to the media all year. As one of the top guys in the North Texas Super Bowl committee he says he has been constantly asked for tickets throughout the whole process. Donovan is still proud that he intercepted Roger Staubach in the Old Timers Quarterback Bowl.
12:40 – Bob’s 30 seconds on Egypt; gas prices are expected to rise due to the conflict in Egypt. All Americans are being instructed to leave. Dan’s thoughts: Egypt is the one with pyramids right? Back to Roger Staubach, is this guy really 68? He is truly a superhero.
12:55 - The guys talk about how being on Radio Row provides some awkward situations with multitudes of representatives coming up and asking if the show wants to have a certain player/coach/former player, etc. on to talk. Not everyone gets on the show. Over the weekend, Bob took his family down to the Stockyards and to Sundance Square, where ESPN is setting up shop. Weather talk is taking over and bleeds into Super Bowl in New York talk. Cold. Rain. Snow. Wind. There, all covered.
1:20 – Corby sits down with Bob and Dan, and Dan tells a story of a friend of his who got scammed on Facebook concerning tickets to the Super Bowl; he’s a die-hard Packers fan. Don’t Western Union money anywhere. Dan is curious how the $20 million in economic impact to Arlington is calculated.
1:35 – Donny Anderson: The former Green Bay Packer and Texas Tech great joins the show. A current Dallas resident, Donny grew up near Amarillo and lived the “small town Texas football” life. He was a football Jack-of-all-Trades; he threw, ran, caught and even punted but he could never block. There used to be a rule in the NCAA that you could only substitute 2 players on 4th down; as a punter, he revolutionized the art of “hang time”. In the famous Ice Bowl, Donny says that the quarterback sneak by Bart Starr wasn’t the called play. Donny has an event March 15th check out the event info. www.wflfoundation.org
2:05 – Bob refused to watch the Pro Bowl, as it signals the end of football is nigh. Sports Sturm also did not watch the NHL All-Star game or the team draft. The final guy picked in the All-Star draft won a free car. I would’ve wanted to get picked last in elementary school if that was always the case. We all agree that Randy White could beat up Bob; at what age would Randy White have to be so Bob could beat him up? Donovan thinks when Bob is 75 and Randy White is 95.
2:20 – Bob talks about the Herschel Walker MMA fight on Saturday; he handily defeated his opponent. In 1980, he should have won the Heisman Trophy; in 2011, he’s winning MMA fights. Is he arguably the greatest athlete ever? It’s believed that he never lifts weights and the he eats only 1 meal a day; a salad at midnight.
2:35 – Norm had some interesting audio this morning as he tried to get George Atallah on the phone for an interview, 1 try, 2 tries, 3 tries, 4 tries later Norm gives up and resorts to Pro Bowl talk. This was a very Kip Keino-esque moment for Norm. Some inaudible audio from Jeremy Piven, it’s the Rapistbergers versus the Cheese heads. He’s the first one ever to say that…
3:00 – WTDS: More effing weather talk. On this day in 1960, NASA launched Ham the chimp. Happy Birthday to Nolan Ryan, Ernie Banks, Bret “the Hitman” Hart, Boobs of Hazard 2, Who would win a fight between Staubach and Nolan Ryan? Phil Collins, Portia de Rossi, Minnie Driver. Spares include, Othella Harrington and Perry Kemp.
Listen to BaD Radio everyday from 12 – 3pm on Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket. I do, and I has opulence.
Position: Tight End
Size: 6'6, 263
Age: 28, 5/6/82
Drafted: Round 3, #69 - 2003
Experience: 8 Seasons
Salary History and Contract Status: 7/22/2006: Signed a six-year, $29 million contract extension through 2012. The deal contains $12 million guaranteed, including a $6 million signing bonus and a $6 million option bonus in the second year. 2010: $2.641 million (+ $500,000 roster bonus), 2011: $3.391 million (+ $500,000 roster bonus), 2012: $3.641 million (+ $1 million roster bonus), 2013: Free Agent
2003 Draft Profile From OurLads: (2nd ranked TE - Behind Dallas Clark from Iowa) - Jason Witten, 6'5/265, 4.70 - Junior Eligible. Former defensive lineman. Solid producer the past two seasons. Has excellent size. Tall and well-built. Sturdy. Has good strength in the upper body and arms. Above average overall blocker. Not especially quick off the mark but he makes solid contact. Strikes with good lean and can generate movement on drive blocks. Can turn a defender with strong hand usage. Generally keeps his feet. Does a fairly good job of moving out on linebackers, although he is a little stiff adjusting in space. Not quick footed as a blocker - gets stationary at times with his feet while attempting to win battles with his upper body. Works to sustain but isn't nasty in doing so. Athletic. Often used in motion or split wide. Good receiver for a big tight end. Releases smoothly and has the speed to get up the seam. Has reliable hands - can extend and snatch away from his body. Shows the concentration to make the tough grab. Doesn't have dynamic cutting ability or fluidity. Heavy legged - lacks good leaping ability. Effective after the catch. Isn't nifty, but he has the power to run through tackles when he gets up a head of steam. Improving. Quality Prospect.
Witten ended up being selected by Dallas as the 5th TE off the board. Clark went in the 1st round to the Colts at #24, Bennie Joppru from Michigan went to Houston at pick #41 (I am sure this tortures some Texans' fans), LJ Smith of Rutgers to the Eagles at Pick #61, and the Raiders wanted #Teyo Johnson at #63 - a conversion WR who they wanted to convert to TE rather than settle for Witten. 6 picks later, Jason Witten was a Dallas Cowboy.
Pre-2010:Witten has been an elite Tight End for the majority of his 8 seasons in the NFL. Over that time, only Tony Gonzalez has more receptions at the position (672-617), and only Gonzalez (7732) and Antonio Gates (7005) have more yards than Witten (6967). Witten has out-produced Dallas Clark (393 receptions, 4,535 yards) substantially from that 2003 draft class. Not only that, but ProFootballFocus.com has rated Jason Witten the very best run blocking Tight End in 2009 and 2010. He is the total package and everything a team would want as a franchise-level Tight End. With the possible exception of DeMarcus Ware, nobody would argue that Witten is the most dominant player at his position that the Cowboys have employed in this era. In this world of fantasy football numbers, Witten often takes a back seat to Gates and Gonzalez, but that is because there are no points distributed for run blocking. As far as total tight ends go, nobody is more complete than Witten. And in a league where Antonio Gates is making $7.25 per year, Witten is a bargain, too.
2010: This season, despite QB chaos on the roster, Witten led the league in receiving amongst NFL Tight Ends. Most targets (123), catches (94), and yards (1002). Also, after a 2009 where he only found the end-zone 2 times (causing many to write stories about how he needs to improve on this), he scored 9 Touchdowns - including one in Game 16 that caused the Cowboys to drop 4 spots in the NFL Draft. On top of this, he led the NFL TE's in run blocking grades, and despite conceding a few sacks, graded 5th by ProFootballFocus.com in pass protection. It was clear that Jon Kitna found throws to Witten to be far more available and appealing, so when Romo left for the season, Witten was targeted again and again. And amazingly, the defenses were never able to contain him like they did when Romo was on the field. All 3 of the interceptions intended for Witten occurred when Romo was the QB.
2011 Analysis: At some point, Witten will slow down. But, the good news is he will be just 29 years old on opening day and despite the fact that he has a lot of miles on those tires, it sure appears that he also has a few more years to be dominant. After that, he has such a large gap between his level and "Average NFL Tight End" level, that he could no-doubt help this team for years to come. The Cowboys use him in a number of ways to get maximum production out of him, and I suspect as time goes on, they will try to flex him out into the slot more and more and keep him from having to block edge rushers - leaving that to the young TE's like Martellus Bennett and John Phillips. There is every reason to believe that Jason Witten is on his way to Canton if he keeps going for a few more years.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
Super Bowl week means many things to many people. To me, it means it is time to tabulate the annual numbers in the NFL to find the answer to a question that was asked a decade ago and launched a bit for every Super Bowl.
The 10th annual NFL Franchise Rankings are ready for your viewing pleasure. We have tabulated the latest figures after the 2010 Playoffs and Super Bowl 45 (Final Results Pending, of course).
To recap, a few years ago, a good strong listener asked me to rank the franchises from #32 to #1 based on their accomplishments from Super Bowl I to present.
So I did. I wanted it to be objective, not subjective. I wanted it to be a formula and you would just enter the numbers and it would spit out the rankings with no favoritism or prejudice. We have been doing this since 2001. Since then, it has been imitated a time or two , but I don’t mind. It is pretty obvious idea for any sports nerd to come up with.
Here is how it works. Each Franchise gets 1 point for each season it makes the playoffs. Then, if it reaches the Conference Championship Game it gets a total of 3 points. If it makes the Super Bowl it gets 5, and if it wins the Super Bowl it wins the maximum total of points in a given year of 11. It used to be 10 for the Super Bowl, but I have adjusted it last year because I didn’t like the idea that 2 Super Bowl losses equaled a Super Bowl win. So, Now 11 points for a win and 5 for a loss in the Super Bowl.
I have been asked why no points are given for wins in the Wildcard round, but I decided that would not make sense with the idea that the playoffs have grown over the years and there is no way to equalize a smaller field to a larger one. Also, a Wildcard win is not that big a deal anymore with 6 teams in the playoffs, so unless you reach the Conference Title game, no additional points beyond the 1 for making the post-season.
I also have been asked how come I don’t go by average points per season (since many teams have joined the league since Super Bowl 1. My answer is simple: I don’t want to penalize teams who have been in the league all of the years. If you go by average points per year rather than total points, it is possible that the Baltimore Ravens would have been #1 if they had won the Super Bowl this year. No chance I would believe that premise, given that they didn’t exist prior to 1996. But, if a team has been established since the season of Super Bowl 1 (1966), it is notated.
Just add up the points for all the years, and that is the entire formula. (By the way, if you disagree with the point totals for each accomplishment, you will find that just about any reasonable formula spits out about the same results.
Otherwise, I break ties based on the team with more Super Bowl wins, then Super Bowl losses, then Championship Game wins, then playoff berths, and finally average points per year. There are no ties. I will settle it somehow.
I have decided to add the category this year in version 9.0 that many have requested - average pts per year - so that we may determine results based on years in the league. 24 of the 32 teams have been here the entire span of the 45 years of Super Bowl football, but this metric will help put the other 8 teams: Saints '67, Bengals '68, Seahawks '76, Buccaneers '76, Jaguars '95, Panthers '95, Ravens '96, and Texans '02. Also, the Browns missed 96-98, so they only have 42 seasons to work with.
So, let's check the Super Bowl XLV update - today we release the bottom 12 teams. Teams #21-32. In a few days, we will release teams #11-20, and then when the game is over on Sunday, we will know who is #1 in the NFL in the Super Bowl Era.
And, assuming you are a Cowboys fan, I should tell you that Dallas has been #1 the first 9 times we have done this. That could change on Sunday evening. Pittsburgh is playing for a chance to pass Dallas for the 1st time if they can defeat Green Bay.
#21 - Cleveland Browns (#21)
No season 1996-1998
Cleveland, one of the few teams to never make a Super Bowl, remains at #21 in our countdown. There is plenty of prestige and tradition in their franchise, but most of it happened with Otto Graham and Jim Brown. Both players retired prior to the 1st Super Bowl.
Total Points: 24
Total Playoff Years: 67, 68C, 69C, 71, 72, 80, 82, 85, 86C, 87C, 88, 89C, 94, 02
#22 - San Diego Chargers (#22)
San Diego has accumulated a number of playoff berths recently, but without that breakthrough win, remains in the bottom third of the league. They have been to one Super Bowl, but overall, they have often been a post season disappointment. The Chargers missed the playoffs in 2010, and therefore are stuck at #22.
Total Points: 22
Total Playoff Years: 79, 80C, 81C, 82, 92, 94SL, 95, 04, 06, 07C, 08, 09
#23 – New Orleans Saints (#23)
Following a Super Bowl champion year, the Saints shot up from #31 to #23 last season. It was a banner year and one that many expected to be followed up with another post-season run. Instead, the Saints lost to 7-9 Seattle and added just 1 point to their total.
Total Points: 20
Total Playoff Years: 87, 90, 91, 92, 00, 06C, 09S, 10
#24 – Baltimore Ravens (#24)
Established 1996 - (The NFL ruled that all old records stay in Cleveland with the Browns.)
The Ravens have become a staple in the playoffs in the John Harbaugh era. And their average points per season dwarf those franchises that surround them down here in the rankings.
Total Points: 19
Total Playoff Years: 00S, 01, 03, 06, 08C, 09, 10
#25 - Cincinnati Bengals (#25)
The Bengals were good enough to rise up and lose two Super Bowls to Joe Montana and Bill Walsh in the 1980's. Other than that, this long time franchise has had great difficulty getting any footing and sit at a disappointing #25 in the NFL.
Total Points: 17
Total Playoff Years: 70, 73, 75, 81SL, 82, 88SL, 90, 05, 09
Cincinnati holds tiebreaker over Seattle with 2 Super Bowl appearances to 1.
#26 - Seattle Seahawks (#26)
Seattle certainly did not expect to add to its point total this year, but won their division in 2010. This decade has far out-produced the first 25 years of Seahawks football, but there is still substantial room for improvement moving forward.
Total Points: 17
Total Playoff Years: 83C, 84, 87, 88, 99, 03, 04, 05SL, 06, 07, 10
#27 – Atlanta Falcons (#27)
At #27, the most notable fact is that the Atlanta Falcons still have not made the playoffs on consecutive seasons in their franchise's history. Their one-and-done run this year was not met with approval.
Total Points: 16
Total Playoff Years: 78, 80, 82, 91, 95, 98SL, 02, 04C, 08, 10
#28 - Carolina Panthers (#28)
So close to winning Super Bowl 38, the Panthers have only made the playoffs 4 times, but the Final 4 in 3 of those 4 runs. They have a lot of work to do.
Total Points: 12
Total Playoff Years: 96C, 03SL, 05C, 08
#29 - Detroit Lions (#29)
When you discuss the two saddest franchises in NFL history, look no further than #29 and #30 on our list. Detroit has only advanced to the Conference Championship game one time, a game they lost 41-10 to the Redskins. Words cannot describe how long Lions fans have waited for a winner. The wait continues.
Total Points: 11
Total Playoff Years: 70, 82, 83, 91C, 93, 94, 95, 97, 99
#30 – Arizona/St Louis Cardinals (#30)
The Lions can actually look down at a team that has been worse. However, it sure appeared that they would win Super Bowl 43 2 years ago when Santonio Holmes and Ben Roethlisberger crushed their dreams. The Cardinals did make a Super Bowl, though, leaving only Cleveland, Detroit, Jacksonville, and Houston as the only teams to never attend.
Total Points: 10
Total Playoff Years: 74, 75, 82, 98, 08SL, 09
Arizona holds tie-breaker over Jacksonville due to the Cardinals having been to a Super Bowl (1-0).
#31 – Jacksonville Jaguars (#31)
Jacksonville, an expansion team that always seems somewhat competitive, made it to two AFC Championship games in its first 5 years, but then spent much of this decade chasing the Colts in the AFC South.
Total Points: 10
Total Playoff Years: 96C, 97, 98, 99C, 05, 07
Average: 0.6 per season
#32 – Houston Texans (32)
And the bottom team in our rankings is the youngest team in the NFL, but also a team that has never made the playoffs. Certainly, the natives of Houston would like to see that change sometime very, very soon.
Total Points: 0
Total Playoff Years: None
Explanation of Years:
Just the year means they made the playoffs (1 point). Year followed by “C” means they lost in the Conference Championship Game (3 points), Year followed by “SL” means they lost the Super Bowl (5 points), and Year followed by “S” means they won the Super Bowl (11 points).
Version 7.0 …
Version 6.0 …
Saturday, January 29, 2011
Friday, January 28, 2011
I don't think anyone will argue that having a good group of starters is a must for a team to get anywhere in this league. What is it though that makes the team a contender? It could be a coach, a superstar, maybe even a couple or trio of players. Having all those sure doesn't hurt, but I think its more then that. I believe its a good bench that you need to carry you through the thick of the season. After the Kobe's and Dirk's are hurt or tired you have to fall on the guys you have ready to go at a given moment. As of late that's just what the Mavs have been relying on. Out scoring Huston's bench 48-14 and in the last five games have averaged 44.8 points. Lets not forget though what happen to not only the bench, but the team when our superstar was hurt.
- Both Chandler and Kidd got double-doubles.
- Mavs once had a 25 point lead.
- Luis Scola scored game high 30 points.
Thanks to Adam Rosen for the data.
What is ADS? Read the FAQ and find out.
I think we could talk about quite a bit from the first 50 games and feel good about where this organization appears to be heading. I think Joe Nieuwendyk had a vision in the summer time, and with almost no funds and limited resources to work with, he has been able to craft this hockey team into something that makes sense on the ice - which was no short order. Let's be honest, there has not been much to celebrate since the 2008 Western Conference Finals, and if you are even close to me in your level of optimism, you didn't think the Stars were going to return to the playoffs in 2011 when you considered the topic in August.
But, now, sitting on 65 points with 32 games to go, the picture is coming into focus. This squad, who has not eclipsed 90 points in either of the last two seasons, now look sure to do so. Last year, the #8 seed Colorado made the playoffs with 95 points. The #9 and #10 seeds (St Louis and Calgary) did not with 90 points a piece. The Stars had 88 and finished at #12.
Simple math tells you that if 95 is your magic number, you must find 15 more wins (or 30 points) in your final 32 games. It would take quite a collapse from that standpoint to miss, right?
So, make our plans for April, right?
Not so fast, my friend. (courtesy: Lee Corso)
This is my theme this All-Star Game weekend: Let's keep our verb tenses correct when discussing what is being accomplished (notice I don't say, "what has been accomplished"). When visiting with players, I always try to make that distinction between "proving your critics wrong" and "proved your critics wrong". There is a big difference there, and I think they all seem to realize that as awesome as it is to stay in a great spot for so long this season, it don't mean anything until you reserve one of those 16 spots into post season play and bring NHL Playoff Hockey back to Dallas.
I even am bothered with the idea of changing your goals. Catch Vancouver and Detroit and win the Western Conference! Get home ice! President's Trophy!
I don't want to hear any of that. In my opinion, you must keep your eyes on the prize and on your pursuers. They are in 1st place in the Pacific Division, but they are also on 10 points out of last in the Pacific. Hardly secure. The Kings and the Sharks have underperformed from their preseason projections, but they realize this thing is a marathon and not a sprint, and chances are pretty good that they believe with 30+ games to play, the Stars are still within reach. There have been no concession speeches from California just yet.
So much is great about what we have seen so far. The emergence of a very confident goaltender who is finally fulfilling his promise. A back-up goaltender who looks ready to play and contribute. A checking line that is proud and gritty. A top line that is a top line. A defense group that always knew they were better than their critics would concede. And on and on.
This is fun. (notice, I didn't say "this has been fun"). I am enjoying this very much. I think you are, too. I think the city is realizing what is going on here. But, nothing has been won. No critics have been proved wrong. No labels have been ripped off. This is a great spot. This is where you want to be.
Rest those bodies. Get a clear head. 32 games is a long stretch of the season. Some battles are scheduled that will be most intense. You have a head start on your adversaries, but no quarter will be given.
Keep that verb tense straight. We are still in the present tense. If things go right, then in April, we will move the regular season to the past tense, and focus on the future tense of the playoffs.
Proving the critics wrong.
As we continue to prepare for the NFL Draft and for the #9 pick, I have been locked on to all of the Senior Bowl week coverage from Mobile that is now available on our televisions in 2011. Isn't technology wonderful? The idea that we can now view Senior Bowl workouts each day and hear the NFL executives discuss various players is something that surely did not exist a decade ago. Now, we can get a feel for the draft in January on some level.
By all accounts, the highest-rated player in the 2011 Draft who is in Mobile appears to be Texas A&M OLB Von Miller. Miller is one of a handful of 1st Round Picks present for the Senior Bowl and also the one who is causing the most salivating.
The reason he is off the charts with upside is his quickness and his ability to rush and sack the QB at the very top level. This, as we know is invaluable to the 3-4 defense. The entire scheme is based on 2 players. The Outside Linebackers who play a "joker" position where they can rush or they can drop into coverage. And since there are 5 players lined up across the front, the offense has to figure out which OLB is dropping and which one is headed for the outside edge of your tackle on his way to the QB.
His dip and turn on the edge of tackles is not questioned. He also seems to be able to counter his edge rush with an inside move, and in the Nebraska game in November, you even saw him placed inside on a few occasions to charge through the "A" or "B" gap on a blitz normally reserved for an Inside LB.
He weighed in at 237 on Monday and this is where we start to discuss the realities of making Von Miller a top pick in the 2011 Draft. Some of you have even suggested the Cowboys grab him at #9. Others see Houston and Wade Phillips adding him at #11. Just about everyone sees him gone before we get to the 2nd half of Round 1.
I think Miller will be a fine pro, so I don't want you getting me wrong. However, when we start to talk about the money that goes with Top 10 picks (or at least used to before the new CBA) we have to start to make sure that there are no flaws in his game to speak of. Remember Oklahoma Safety Roy Williams? He is a perfect example of what happens if you pick a player based on his highlight film. All players in the draft have remarkable highlight films - but what are the potential risks that should have scared the Cowboys from Williams? Let us leave no stone unturned.
So, because of the proximity to Von Miller, we all are familiar with his upside. His sacks are remarkable, and his leadership on that Aggie defense is unquestioned. He handled the scheme change like a pro, and returned for a Senior year earning tons of respect from many in the game.
I closely watched him play 3 games this week (Nebraska, Oklahoma, and LSU) to try to get a feel for why I have concerns about his game at the NFL level. It helps that during this past month, we have seen Pittsburgh, New York, and Green Bay all run the 3-4 to a very high level and it gives us some points to look for in a LB.
Here are my 3 concerns about Miller at the NFL level:
1) - Is he a 3-down LB? This is far and away the biggest issue. Can he play for all 3 downs? There is no question that he is a 3rd Down pass rush specialist. On sure passing downs, you put Miller on the edge and enjoy the fruits of his devastating ability to get to the QB and then bring him down. My issue is against the run. When watching the top OLB's in 3-4 defenses in the NFL (DeMarcus Ware, James Harrison, Lamarr Woodley, Clay Matthews) they all have the ability to get to the QB with the very best in the sport. But, what truly makes them special is that you also have a very difficult time running at them or away from them. In the case of Harrison, he catches so many runs away from his side from behind because he refuses to be blocked. In Miller's case, Nebraska and LSU would run block to his side with a TE, and I just did not see Miller able to shed blocks and get in on the stop very much. At 237, the first question is going to be can he stand up to the run. For all of Anthony Spencer's faults, you cannot run a running play at him very much with any success. He defeats at the point of attack and either frees up space for his mates or makes the play himself. Miller seems to need a lot of work and about 15 pounds to make a difference here. In the NFL, they will run right at you until your coach takes you off the field if they think that is how to slow down your pass rush.
2) - Does the motor always run? Again, this showed up in the games I watched this week. Scouts and coaches often say that they don't expect anyone to make every play, but they want to see you in the frame when the whistle blows. For the Aggies, #37-Hodges and #77-Patterson both play close to Miller on the defense and they seem to be in the screen or making the play constantly. Why do we seldom see #40 on the screen as the tackle is made? Is it the way he is being coached? Possibly. Hodges is playing ILB and obviously the scheme calls for him to make the tackles (think Bradie James), but I need to know why Miller seems to be jogging a lot as opposed to running to get involved in the play. His playing weight is not far from Clay Matthews, but Matthews may have the craziest motor in football, catching plays from behind constantly all over the field. That is how undersized LBs can stay in the league at a top level. Now, I concede that they may be telling Miller to play more conservatively and protect the backside on plays in the other direction, but if he is not being told to do that, then I need to know why he is not flying around the field with all of his athletic ability and skills.
3) - Why is he on the sideline so much? When watching a NFL game, it is clear that the great 3-4 OLBs never leave the field. If there are 72 snaps, they are playing 72 (or, at least 70). In the games I watched, I was confused as to why Miller seems to be on the sideline for about 10-15 snaps a game. Was he dinged up? Was he tired? Or did Mike Sherman and his staff think that 94-Moore gave them a better option in run situations? DaMontre Moore was a freshman this season, so I have a hard time accepting that he is better equipped in any situation than Miller (although Moore looks like a monster, too). Again, this is a nitpick, but these are the questions that arrive in your head when you watch him closely and decide if you would spend a high 1st on him.
I like him. I don't love him at the NFL level. I think I would have to add 10-15 pounds of muscle to his frame and hope that he can grow into the position. That can happen, but this idea that he makes more sense than Spencer for Dallas is crazy talk, in my opinion. Spencer can be upgraded upon, but not by a 237 pound edge rusher. Clay Matthews weighs 255 today, but 240 at the Senior Bowl in 2009 - but Green Bay has such a large defensive front that it seems to work for them. Could an undersized Dallas front deal with an undersized OLB, too? I have serious doubts.
I suspect that during the spring, teams will look closely at these questions about how he projects. I have no doubt that someone takes him high, because there is nothing more important than sacks for a defensive front 7 player. But, the flaws are a bit disconcerting for me, and I would be nervous about my team grabbing him too early.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
The Mix: Hi, Norm. Bye, Norm. This will be a cheerleader free Super Bowl because the Steelers and Packers are eye-candy free teams. Also, Phyllis from The Office was a former NFL cheerleader. Yeah…I know.
The Open: All this medical technology and we can’t even fix a horse’s bones? Day 19 of the Dan in a Suit Flipbook. More NFL cheerleader talk (scratching head). Now marriage contract talk; Dan pines for a day when he can see couples sign marriage contracts that can be renewed or dropped after 10 years. It would keep spouses from mailing it in on the fitness side.
12:40 – Troy Aikman Talk: On the heels of a recent D Magazine story on the former Cowboys Quarterback. Bob talks about the idea that, though Troy is one of the more recognizable people in Dallas and a Cowboys legend, no one really knows the real Troy Aikman. Troy basically had the perfect career; he elevated his play in the most important games, he retired as a Cowboy and had perfect timing in getting his broadcasting job. There’s no one like Troy. It’s a very interesting and in-depth article; give it a read.
1:00 – Homer Call: Two lucky calls will advance to the next round of the playoffs -- The Finals. Boston High School Football makes its way down south and into the finals with this call. Go to the 3 minute mark. Joining the Beantown Crew will be this call made during a Maryland Field Hockey match.
1:20 – Short Segment: While Bob was watching some Senior Bowl workouts, the booth threw it down to a “sideline” reporter and she says “Guys, I have nothing. Sorry to disappoint.” Idiocracy. And here is audio of a little girl who was terribly distraught that the Bears lost against the Packers.
1:30 – Deion “Primetime” Sanders: The late, the great Deion Sanders joins BaD Radio again to produce some audio gold. Deion and Snoop Dogg are teaming up to host the Snooper Bowl, a youth football tournament held around the Super Bowl. Deion has a great idea and needs Bob and Dan’s help; www.primetimefundraiser.com He’s hosting a star studded party at his home and needs help raising money and would like BaD Radio to broadcast live from the party. We’ll see if management will let this happen. Deion, in order to be prepared for a possible Hall of Fame induction, called upon Emmitt Smith to give him some insight on what to expect, the nuance of whole presentation.
1:55 – More Primetime: Deion sticks around to talk about “Woodcock” and working with the guys on the NFL Network. He says that they don’t rehearse anything on the highlights show and they’re just a bunch of guys up there loving what they do and having fun. It’s obvious. Referencing the Jay Cutler situation, Deion says “perception is, he quit; reality is, he may have been hurt”. He is emphatic about the point that perception and reality is more often than not completely different. The perception of Deion was that he avoided tackling; the reality is it never hurt his team. Many players have been hurt but visibly showed that they wanted to go back in the game, thus giving a better perception to the fans. We never got to see the injury or Cutler begging to get back in the game so the perception was that he quit. Dan wants to see Deion’s toe. Here’s confirmation that the toe picture was not doctored. Deion’s Toe live in studio.
2:30 - More on Deion’s Toe: There was some perception late in his career that he was a wimp because of “Turf Toe”. Turf Toe is one of the most misunderstood injuries in all of sports; it’s one of the more painful injuries out there and is a game ender for anyone at a speed position. Thanks Dan for peer pressuring Prime Time into showing the toe to world. In other news, Tom’s middle name is Frederick. The more you know.
2:40 – Ranch Report: David Moore, once again, joins the show from sunny Green Bay. Dan still has no idea what the point of David Moore being in Green Bay is. Patience Dan, there will be ample coverage of what David is doing starting Sunday. Regarding what “final say” when it comes to the draft means, Garrett doesn’t understand what the big fuss is about because the Head Coach always has the deciding vote. But everyone in the room gives their opinion and makes their case. David thinks at the Cowboys current draft standing, they should stay put and get either a) a cornerback or b) a defensive tackle, in that order.
3:00 – WTDS: Mike is broadcasting from a pedicure chair. On this day in 2001, 10 people died in a plane crash outside of Denver. One year ago today, the iPad was introduce by Steve Jobs and J.D. Sallinger died a year ago. Happy Birthday to Chris Collinsworth, Chocolate Gozongas, Dave Manson, Matt Stover, Bridget Fonda, Keith Olbermann, Patton Oswalt and Mimi Rogers. The spares would be Frank Cornett, Eric Wedge, Tom Trebelhorn and Phil Plantier.
Listen to BaD Radio everyday from 12 – 3pm on Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket. I do, and I has opulence.