Chat with KC Joyner
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN Insider KC Joyner, will be here to answer your NFL questions.
Joyner, aka The Football Scientist, uses game film to track, tabulate and analyze nearly every measurable statistic in an NFL game. He is a regular Insider contributor and has his own website at thefootballscientist.com.
Send your questions now and join KC Thursday at 4 p.m. ET!
KC Joyner (4:00 PM)
Good afternoon! Let's talk some football!
Hi KC,Happy Thursday--I am heading out of the country today so need to send you this Fantasy Question today--sorry! Another owner offered me A Foster & D Branch FOR F Jones
KC Joyner (4:01 PM)
Enjoy the trip! The Foster trade is one to make. Covered this question first in the chat just as a reminder that this chat will concentrate mostly on NFL/CFB talk. There is a TFS fantasy chat tomorrow at 3 PM ET to cover all of the fantasy queries.
Craig (College Park)
Torrey Smith. Great debut or greatest debut?
KC Joyner (4:02 PM)
Smith showed the skills he displayed in college, but let's not forget he did it against a Rams defense that has been positively abysmal this year. Not to take anything away from him but do that against a good defense and it will be more impressive.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
DMC the best RB in the league thorugh 3 games?
KC Joyner (4:04 PM)
Big time. And he's doing it despite not getting the most consistent blocking from the Raiders O line. They are creating big gaps at times but their consistency rate is down from last year. That means Run DMC can actually improve on his numbers, believe it or not.
Who is more productive the ROS: Desean Jackson or Ryan Mathews?
KC Joyner (4:06 PM)
Mathews. The Chargers coaches are saying that he is now ready to take over more of a role in that offense because he's now fully acclimated with the system. He's also been vastly more productive than Tolbert (see the week 3 TFS ESPN.com Insider Pass Plays article for more details), so look for him to get more of the workload down the road.
Da Biz (No Cali)
Has Titus Young become the #2 wr in Detroit ahead of Burleson?
KC Joyner (4:06 PM)
Not yet, but he might get there soon. Burleson is very good, though, so it might be more of a split targets scenario than just having Young take over that spot.
What happened to Manningham, Nicks, Schaub, CJ, Etc....meanwhile Fitz, Megatron, Stafford are going off.
KC Joyner (4:08 PM)
Manningham's woes are due to Eli's inconsistency and suffering that concussion. No worries about Nicks, as he's had some good performances. Schaub's issues are based on Houston having a better D and a good run game. CJ2K's woes are myriad and were covered in the week 4 Pass Plays article.
Craig (College Park)
Temple came to town and looked like a national champion contender. How much of that is Temple being good and MD being awful?
KC Joyner (4:09 PM)
Not sure on Temple, but I can say that Danny O'Brien has definitely went through a sophomore slump (both literally and figuratively). He was going to be the topic of a TFS CFB article but with the way he's playing, that is probably going to go by the wayside.
So KC, do you think the Vikings can play at least three good quarters in a row this week?
KC Joyner (4:09 PM)
Spoken like a true Vikings fan.
KC Fan of the MAN (In KC's World)
Tell me you are as disgusted about the Sweetness book as I am...really really poor taste, dontcha think?
KC Joyner (4:11 PM)
Walter Payton was one of my childhood heroes. While I understand why some people would want to read a tell-all biography about him, I don't want that hero to be lost to the gritty details of his personal life. Can't say I'm disgusted by the book but it isn't one I'll likely be reading.
Mac (Always Sunny in Philly)
Do you watch me, KC?...how long til J. Ford and D. Moore are the starters in Oak...and who will be better?
KC Joyner (4:12 PM)
I've heard great things about that show but can't say it's hit my watch list quite yet. Ford is probably the starter very soon. Might be a bit longer for Moore, but they will find a much bigger role for him in that offense even if he isn't a starter (he might be their Percy Harvin, in other words).
How has Mike Vick's bad decision rate looked so far this season? Seems to me he is getting more and more mistake prone. Has not looked good since the Bears game last year. Thoughts?
KC Joyner (4:14 PM)
At last check, it was just as bad as it was last year (and he had the highest bad decision rate in the league in 2010). When he gets hurt, he's apt to make even more mistakes, so Philadelphia probably needs to rest him and get him healed up for the midseason/stretch run.
KC, I see you're really big on the Raiders. Where would you place Ford among other receivers when he is 100%?
KC Joyner (4:14 PM)
He had top 25 metrics last year if memory serves correct, so that's the kind of upside he brings to the table.
Mike D (Lower Trestles)
Does Frank Gore trun it around and start to tear it up soon? 2.5 yards a carry, what's up with that?
KC Joyner (4:15 PM)
It's a combination of bad blocking and Gore not having much of a burst. His being hurt means that likely won't get turned around soon.
Ian (Almont, MI)
what do you think about the lions? playoff this year?
KC Joyner (4:16 PM)
They should be able to win on Sunday and that would make them 4-0. I'd say playoffs but remember the last time they went 4-0 (1980), they ended up not making the playoffs. This team needs to show it has the physical fortitude to keep up its performance level as the season grind hits the later stages.
Do you see Miami making a coaching change mid-season?
KC Joyner (4:17 PM)
When a coach says he doesn't have the answers to fix the team's problems, it might already be time to make a change. If memory serves right, the Fins have a bye week coming up very soon. It would not be a shock if they make a coaching change then.
With Britt out does CJ2k have a breakout week, or will it be week five when his fullback returns, or (please...no) will he be a bust?
KC Joyner (4:19 PM)
Cleveland doesn't have a great run D but, as this week's Pass Plays article details, CJ2K is getting awful blocking up front. The Titans also aren't running the key-buster run plays they used to run when Mike Heimerdinger was the OC. CJ2K may have a solid week this week but the Titans have Pittsburgh the next week and then a bye, so it could be as much as a month before his fortunes truly get turned around.
Mike (San Diego)
KC, for a minute there, the chat didn't load...thought I might actually have to do some actual work. Anyway, what are your thoughts on Vick so far? Overall scouting eye on him? Seems like teams figured him out pretty quickly.
KC Joyner (4:21 PM)
There is no telling how much money this chat is costing U.S. businesses in lost productivity. We should find a way to metricize that. The book on Vick since his days at VT has been to hit him as often as possible, as his game changes when that happens. Teams are doing that every week and it is impacting his performance.
Do you think Ridley plays well enough to replace BGE in the Pats offense?
KC Joyner (4:22 PM)
Not sure about replacing BJGE, as Law Firm is a good power runner who can wear down a defense. NE may just go with a 1-2 punch of those two when they want to use that style of offense.
William (Fort Lauderdale)
Addai looked pretty good last Sunday. Do you see him becoming more of a factor going forward and start to produce on a consistent basis?
KC Joyner (4:23 PM)
He's a solid runner and Indy does have solid run blocking (their numbers last year were not bad and this year's totals look even better) but the lack of a passing game means his upside could be limited. Plus he has Delone Carter starting to vulture carries here and there.
Jimmy N (Arlington, VA)
Sidge my man! Dont give up on Danny O'Brien yet. The last 2 games he has had 2 of his best WR suspended. I think the Miami game is more indicative of his perfomance. UMD alum here spitting some SAGE advice!!
KC Joyner (4:24 PM)
Based on your word, Jimmy, I'll keep the faith! I was really looking forward to writing an article about him and hope that he can turn it around so that process can continue.
Mike (San Diego)
Follow up on the Vick question...will teams start to target Shady and the run game, or are there still too many weapons and Shady is just too good to stop?
KC Joyner (4:26 PM)
Teams are always going to aim to stop the pass against Philly because Andy Reid is the most pass-heavy coach in NFL history (or at least he was the last time I saw this stat updated, which wasn't long ago). It might behoove the Eagles to go with the run more but Reid's history suggests that isn't likely.
Can you throw out a name that you think would be a good fit in Miami if a change is made?
KC Joyner (4:27 PM)
Jeff Fisher, but he wouldn't want to take over a team midseason. If Miami were to make a change, they would probably go in-house for an interim replacement and then make a permanent change after the season is over.
Shonn Greene (NY)
Do you think this week I can get rolling against the Ravens?
KC Joyner (4:29 PM)
Greene will likely continue to struggle as long as Nick Mangold is out of the lineup. The Jets run blocking was not up to par last week (and that may be being nice) in part because of Mangold's absence. That won't likely improve on the road against Baltimore.
Love your chats! What's your gut feeling about the Texans RB situation? Foster becomes the workhorse again? 70-30 split with Tate?
KC Joyner (4:29 PM)
Thanks! Foster becomes the workhorse, but it might take a week or two to get back to that level.
Cam's chances against cover-2 this week in Chicago?
KC Joyner (4:31 PM)
Not liking his chances much against Urlacher, Briggs and company. The Bears are very good at sitting back and taking away the vertical passes Newton has been hitting. He's also looking more and more like a one-read and run QB as he was in college. That will change as he gets more experience but for now he's limited and the Bears will show that on Sunday.
Zac (The Bay)
What is metric analysis say on Lacey vs Tyron? Seems something is going on in the Colts FO. Not saying Lacey has played well but from starter to cut..... #SuckForLuck Phase 3 complete.
KC Joyner (4:34 PM)
Am assuming you mean Justin Tryon, the Colts nickel CB who was just waived. His metrics were strong enough to have him rated as a red-rated CB in the TFS start-sit charts (red rating being a top rating). The Colts may have let him go to get some help elsewhere in the secondary, but finding nickel CBs of his caliber isn't easy. He should be able to find a job elsewhere in a heartbeat.
Actually, Reid ran the ball a ton last week (until Kafka came in, which is just not smart) and I was really impressed with McCoy. Do the metrics back up how good he's looked to the naked eye thus far?
KC Joyner (4:35 PM)
He did run the ball more, but that was only after Vick too a big hit in the first quarter (if memory serves correct). In other words, it was done to protect Vick, not because Reid wanted to lean on the running game. Your eye on McCoy is spot on, as his GBYPA is quite high (believe it is in low double digits right now).
Tony Romo (in a kevlar vest)
I miss Andre Gurode...
KC Joyner (4:37 PM)
The funny thing about the botched snaps is that everyone is acting as if this never happened before, but it happened ALL THE TIME!!! Romo's history has numerous instances where the snap flew by him and he had to recover on the run. That says it's as much on him as it is on the center, but that isn't the storyline because no one wants to bash Tony Romo the week after he has maybe his career defining moment with the comeback at SF.
How about Tryon to Minnesota? Good fit or not?
KC Joyner (4:38 PM)
Sure. He's more suited to a cover-two scheme but the Vikings are creative enough that they could find a good place for him.
dont you feel that jim harbaugh needs to open it up a little bit more this sunday to beat the eagles. he seems very content with playing conservative and playing close games
KC Joyner (4:39 PM)
He doesn't seem to trust his offense very much, but using Vernon Davis more (as he did last week) may be a sign that he is finding out who he can lean on. He'll open things up soon enough if that is the case.
Al (Wausau, WI)
KC, in his Tuesday Morning Quarterback article, Gregg Easterbrook noted that, in the second half of the Lions game, the Vikings (with a 20-point lead) called 20 passes and 6 rushes. It would seem that the Vikings should RUN the football more than passing it in situations like this. Might the problem be their offensive coordinator (Bill Musgrave) who is an ex-QB and ex-QB coach?
KC Joyner (4:41 PM)
TMQ is spot on with that assessment. The only reason to get away from the run in that case is that the Lions D line would be playing run-first and they are capable of dominating in that type of situation. Having said that, the Vikings blockers are pretty good and going with more of a 50/50 split would seem more reasonable.
Mike (San Diego)
KC, speaking of Romo...how scared is he to have to face Detroit this week? I wanna see Suh run one in for a TD...big man running with the ball..always a treat to see.
KC Joyner (4:42 PM)
Romo better be ready to scramble a lot, because Detroit is going to bring some serious up the gut pressure. I want to see Suh try to kick another point after. He almost hit that one last year and deserves a chance for redemption.
Well creative enough on the defensive side of the ball, KC. The offense is as complex as a 'Jersey Shore' plot line.
KC Joyner (4:43 PM)
That's J.B. - brutally honest and funny!
Would Tryon be a good fit in Baltimore? They've got some secondary depth issues with a couple of injuries already.
KC Joyner (4:44 PM)
He would be a very good fit there. Just had a thought. Not sure if Indianapolis tried to trade Tryon, but if they didn't, they should have. There is a market for a CB of his caliber, and even if it only brought in a low-round draft pick, it would be better than letting him go for nothing in return.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
"Creative" is one word to describe the Vikes...I can think of others considering their use of Harvin, and giving the ball to Gerhart instead of All Day...
KC Joyner (4:46 PM)
Completely agree with the sentiment. Also quite glad you didn't use those other words, as this is either a G or a PG chat.
I can think of two words to describe the Vikings...Los Angeles!
KC Joyner (4:46 PM)
Sidney Rice (Seattle)
How much better is Seattle with me? What is my ceiling considering who is throwing to me?
KC Joyner (4:47 PM)
Rice is good enough to succeed with any QB. If Williams can get things going on the other side of the formation, we might see a completely different Tarvaris Jackson.
KC Joyner (4:48 PM)
And by different, I mean much improved.
Cirilo R. (CA)
It really seems like the Raiders young players will all mature relatively at the same time. Gonna need a QB to complete the picture though (hope they?re not counting on Pryor). Any college QB out there that is a Raiders type of QB, won?t go top ten (doubt Raiders will draft there), but is still talented beyond his draft position? Kinda thinking of a Mallet-type. Thanks!
KC Joyner (4:49 PM)
They are actually counting on Campbell and for good reason. This week's TFS article on the Raiders shows multiple reasons Campbell is playing fantastic right now. That he is doing this well with the state of flux that has been his WR/TE corps this year shows why he could be the QB to lead this team back to the postseason.
John McClane (Nakatomi Towers)
Welcome to the party pal! Don't you think McCluster should get more touches since Thomas Jones looked horrible?
KC Joyner (4:50 PM)
Die Hard rules!! McCluster got 14 rushes/receptions last week, so he's on a fairly solid pace. The problem is the Chiefs offense is designed to pound the ball after getting a lead and their lousy passing game is preventing that from happening.
Al (Wausau, WI)
My two words to respond to Eric from Chicago - NO WAY!!!
KC Joyner (4:52 PM)
Al, I'm with you on that one. What would be great is to see the Vikings stay in Minnesota and go back to playing outdoors. They seemed to be a better representation of all of the good things about Minnesota when they played in Metropolitan Stadium and getting back to those days would be a welcome sight.
Jacob (Fresno, CA)
As a dolphins fan things are looking bleak. Our red zone play is awful and we will always have a QB controversy. Is it safe to say that Daniel Thomas is something to be excited about?
KC Joyner (4:54 PM)
He sure is. If the Fins could use him as the power back and use Bush as the finisher, they could replicate what the Chiefs did with Charles and Jones last year.
We get it, the Vikes are awful. We knew that before the season here in MN! Now tell me if the Steelers run game or pass game get cracking first so I can win my fantasy league at least!
KC Joyner (4:55 PM)
The Steelers run game is more likely to get going first. They have run blocked well at times this year and if that line can get/stay healthy, they should be able to replicate that feat down the road.
I miss the Vikes outdoors too but no way today's players would accept not having heaters on the home side of the field. Ah Bud Grant, how I miss you.
KC Joyner (4:56 PM)
Bud Grant is one of my all-time favorite coaches. His approach to the job was incredibly refreshing. The world would be a much better place if there were more coaches like him out there.
Clear eyes (Pure heart)
Can't Lose. Do the Chiefs lose out and draft Luck? My friend says they would be better to trade down and get help in other areas.
KC Joyner (4:57 PM)
If the Chiefs do end up being able to draft Luck, it's a no-brainer call. Cassel has shown what he's capable of and his upside is nowhere near as high as Luck's.
Lee (North Carolina)
Do you think that Cam Newton (CAR QB #10 will throw for 4500 yds. on the season and get the Carolina Panthers(R) a 9-7 season or better?
KC Joyner (5:00 PM)
The Panthers last year had much more talent than one would expect from a 2-14 club. Newton will be a good QB down the road but teams are already learning how to play him. He'll probably end up around 3,500 yards and the Panthers will end up with 5-6 wins. The long-term prospects for this team are quite good, however, so don't knock them too badly if that ends up being their record.
any change in your analysis of the alabama secondary after the arkansas game? thanks
KC Joyner (5:02 PM)
Yep. It is better than last year. Having noted that, the Tide won that game as much because their pass rush rattled Tyler Wilson. That isn't to take anything away from the secondary, but if they keep getting that level of pass rush all year, it won't matter if the secondary is improved or not, because no one will be able to test it.
Ben (Baton Rouge, LA)
Is LSU the best NCAA team? And is it even close?
KC Joyner (5:04 PM)
Right now the answer to that question is yes, if only because they have beaten better competition than the other No. 1 contenders. Well, it's been a fun hour but it's time to run. Quick notes: All of the TFS material is posted on Twitter @kcjoynertfs. More info about the TFS weekly start-sit fantasy football charts can be found at www.thefootballscientist.com. Hope to see everyone for tomorrow's fantasy football chat at 3 PM ET!
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