Friday, December 3, 2010
Brady, Rivers under Center of Attention
By Vince Masi
Our weekly look at quarterbacks who are under the center of attention.
On Monday Night Football, Tom Brady will be facing the tough New York Jets defense which features two talented cornerbacks in Antonio Cromartie and Darrelle Revis. To combat that issue, Brady might want to look to his tight ends often. He's done extremely well on throws to them this season, completing 73.6 percent of his passes with nine touchdowns and zero interceptions. His passer rating of 136.5 on attempts to tight ends is second this season only to Philip Rivers.
We're heading into the final month of the season and the San Diego Chargers are again red-hot. Rivers and the Chargers have won 17 straight games played from November 1 on. Their latest came Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts when Rivers didn't throw for a touchdown, snapping his streak of 23 straight games with at least one. Since becoming a starter in 2006, only once has Rivers gone two straight games without a touchdown pass -- November 4 and 11, 2007.
It's an even-numbered year, which means Ben Roethlisberger should play when the Pittsburgh Steelers go on the road to face the Baltimore Ravens, even if he was in a walking boot earlier in the week. He had missed the games in Baltimore in 2005 and 2009 because of injury and in 2007 because the Steelers clinched a playoff spot.
But here's why it's important he does play. Since the start of the 2007 season and including playoffs, Roethlisberger is 5-0 against the Ravens with nine touchdowns and just two interceptions on 146 pass attempts.
There might not be a more accurate QB currently playing than the Green Bay Packers signal-caller. In each of his last three games, Aaron Rodgers has thrown at least 30 times, while completing 70 percent of his passes and without throwing an interception.
No quarterback has a streak that long this season with those numbers. Since 2008, only Drew Brees (nine) has more 30-attempt games with a completion percentage of at least 70 percent and no interceptions than Rodgers (six). This week, Rodgers faces the San Francisco 49ers, who rank 24th in opponent's completion percentage this season.