Hi everyone. Thanks for stopping by. Let's chat it up....
Kevin, do you think the Bears can do it again and nearly run the table after the bye? Aside from the game at Lambeau, it is a very favorable schedule, seemingly.
Well, each year is different. But we've seen life from the Bears as well as a credible formula for winning games. In terms of playoffs, the one curveball they'll have to deal with is the presence of the Lions. The Lions are at least in the way, and by this point last year they were pretty much a non-factor in the race.
Roughing the passer call on Clay Matthews: terrible call or worst call ever?
It was up there. Led with shoulder as far as I can recall and wasn't late. Not sure what the deal was there, other than just being a bad call.
Why were there not 8-9 men in the box at the end of the Minn/GB for Vikings? I know A-Rod can and will beat you through the air, but how do you let them beat you running.
I haven't gone back and counted, but I know the Packers' linemen said they felt the Vikings were in a run-stopping defense. Regardless, I think Leslie Frazier trusts his team to stop the run more than the pass, anyway
Odds are neither happen, but which would be a bigger deal. J. Allen breaking the sack record or C. Johnson breaking the receiving touchdown record?
I'll say Allen because the WR record is kind of a weird deal. Randy Moss has the record with 23, but Jerry Rice had 22 -- IN 12 GAMES -- in 1987. That is incredible and takes a little varnish off Moss' mark.
Kev, what are your thoughts of Scott Linehan's play calling? It seems to me he isnt utilizing/designing plays for Megatron like you expect out of the #1 WR in the league. Teams look as if they're adapting to the usual slant and go route. Is Staffords 2 game slump a result of the play calling? 2 total tds in the past 2 games is unacceptable.
A lot of people are asking that. Linehan, and most offensive coaches, try to work within a system that creates opportunities for other players if the defense ever emphasizes one way or the other. The idea is not to be left trying to force passes into coverage. There are times when the Lions need to throw to Calvin even when he's covered, but they have to be well-orchestrated. So more than anything, I think defenses have adjusted to Calvin and it's time for some other players to make bigger contributions.
Could Berger be an upgrade over Sullivan? Peterson is running through bigger holes in the middle the protection seems better there also.
Yeah, there could be any number of reasons for that. I'll put it this way: Sullivan is a very average center. So the gap between him and his backup isn't likely to be that great.
TO to the Bears? Have you heard this? Are they going to be at his workout?
I have not heard that. In fact, early reports are that there will be no teams in attendance.
I have not heard that. In fact, early reports are that there will be no teams in attendance.
So your star RB is injured (Best) and you run the ball more than you ever have?
Innovative, huh? For what it's worth, I don't hate the way they used the run game against Atlanta. They can't be a one-dimensional downfield or nothing team.
As a Packers fan, should I be scared for the Saints come playoff time?
With any luck, the game will be at Lambeau. So that will help big-time.
Stafford's accuracy has let the lions down the last few weeks. Is this due to the o line not giving him the time he needs or something else?
He's looked a little affected by pressure/hits, but what do I know?
i feel as if Lions Nation is creeping in to "panic mode" territory after the last two losses. would you say that's a bit pre-mature? i see a lot of controllable ways to improve the team's performance, specifically, cut down on penalties (gave ATL 7 first downs on penalties last week)
Well, here's the best thing I can say about the last two games: The 49ers and the Falcons are pretty good teams. The 49ers are going to win their division and the Falcons will be in the wild-card race. It's not as if they're losing to teams they are clearly better than.
How can you defend Suh in your blog saying he's probably telling the truth because he vehemently denies the allegations he was running his mouth when Ryan was on the ground? I'm guessing their stories were the same because it was true. Suh is a dirty player who's always running his mouth and there's way too much evidence against him to argue it at this point.
What I wrote, or the message I tried to convey at least, was that one of these guys isn't telling the truth and that I hope it isn't Suh, given the vehemence of his denial. If White is accurately depicting what Suh said, then Suh is both unsportsmanlike and a liar. I am saying I hope that's not the case.
Cutting Berrian was a no brainer. He was an emerging distraction. Plus, Aromashadou is an equivalent player but contributes on special teams.
Even in his best seasons, Berrian was kind of an uninterested bystander. He got cut because he can't or won't play anymore, pure and simple.
Does Forte have a shot at MVP?
It's been tough for running backs to beat out quarterbacks in recent years for MVP, and right now no one is playing better than Aaron Rodgers.
Kevin! We need a ForteWatch up in this blog! He's on pace for over 2,000 yards from scrimmage! LOUD NOISES!
I can see that. I need four arms to keep up with all of my Watches....
Have you noticed Stafford seems to be throwing sidearm lately? It seems he has reverted to school yard ball because he's running for his life lately.
Yeah, and I think it's a concern. To me, it means he's trying to aim or direct a pass into a really small window. Tough to do, and that's not the way to do it, anyway.
If Aaron Rodgers lived in the time of Greek mythology, do you think Zeus would answer to him?
Yeah, but he might be smitten with Venus. That wouldn't end well.
Don't get me wrong, as a Packers fan I love the team being 7-0, but do you think that the pass defense will eventually doom them, especially once they play a D that can limit A-Rod and Co.?
It's in the back of all of our minds, for sure. The 2009 playoff game in Arizona is all you need to know. When you get to the playoffs, you're not playing Christian Ponder and Cam Newton and Sam Bradford. You're playing only established and often elite quarterbacks who can capitalize. That said, the Packers to this point are doing a decent job minimizing the damage with 13 interceptions.
Kevin, I know this story has been beaten to death, but with the season being almost half done, what are the odds Forte gets a contract before the end?
I still wouldn't rule it out. And you wonder if the bye week would be the time to do it?
In light of the charges against Cook, what do you think is his future with the team?
They'll need to take a hard look at it. Felony strangulation is a serious and violent crime. On the other hand, something like drunken driving is serious but isn't necessarily violent. I don't think they'll cut him, but there isn't a lot of precedent to this type of crime, either.
At least with the Vikings under Leslie Frazier.
Hey Kevin. Marshall Newhouse seemed to struggle physically and mentally on Sunday. Granted Jared Allen is playing well, but is Newhouse's performance reason for concern?
You sort of answered your own question: Jared Allen. If Newhouse starts struggling with other defensive ends, then maybe we start worrying. But it's hard to come down on a guy who gets beat up by the NFL's leading sack man.
Kev! If the season ended today, The Pack, Lions, AND Bears would be in the playoffs! Madness! What would you do if this actually happens this year?
I'd have to come up with something more hyberbolic than "Epicenter of Humanity." Probably would have to be "Center of the Universe."
Kudos to TJ Lang, a first-year starter, for handling that low blow with class and humor. Question -- is it true NFL players do not wear protective cups? I was shocked when I heard that.
I can honestly say I haven't made a personal inspection to confirm that, but many don't. I know that.
Which do you think is more likely, Mike Martz not coming back next year, or the Bears being aggressive in bringing in more ofensive weapons for Cutler?
What are your thoughts on the Wilf's possibly selling the team, and if so, what does that mean for the front office that's already in place? Do you think with a change in ownership, Rick Spielman's job would be in question?? His evaluation of talent in the later rounds hasn't been very good the past few seasons...
I think they'll only sell if they get rejected on the stadium issue. But typically, new owners like to pick their own front offices and coaches. Regardless of your opinion of Spielman's performance, odds are he would move on eventually under that scenario.
Hopped off of the Lions bandwagon just in time for their running game/run defense to become non-existent, eh KS?
I still think they'll make the playoffs. How about that!
Suh needs to shut his mouth. He has brought all of this on himself, he has made his reputation with his actions, and has gone out and bragged about how he doesn't care what anyone thinks. Clearly he does. He doesn't get the benefit of the doubt anymore. And how dumb of a comment is it saying "karma" injured Matt Ryan. Umm...Suh..YOUR qb is injured every year!!!
I obviously haven't watched every play of Suh's career. But I really think the whole dirty thing started (and ended) with the Jake Delhomme helmet thing in the 2010 preseason. I haven't seen a ton of other "dirty" plays from him, including the Dalton hit this summer. I thought that was clean, even if it wasn't totally legal. My feeling is that he has tried to cultivate a reputation as being a tough guy that stops at nothing to get to the quarterback, which some people have taken as dirty. But other than the Delhomme play, I really don't remember any "dirty" plays.
Why doesn't the NFL flex schedule all Sunday and Monday Night games. Prime time football (esp. MNF) has been abysmal this season.
It's part of the agreement with the television networks. And the league also limits how many times a team can be in prime time to keep schedules somewhat fair across the board.
On the Linehan point it seems to me the guy doesnt have a clue on how to playcall in first half of games like he doesnt come in with a gameplan just waits to see what the defenses are giving him then adjusts what are your thoughts?
Disagree. I think he calls some early plays to see how opponents react and then makes adjustments. That's smart and it has worked more often than not in his career as an OC.
So assuming Carimi is back from injury, is there any question to re-inserting him into the starting OLine, given they've been...better...the past 2 games?
Spencer has been decent at right guard, so you wonder if it will be him or Lance Louis when Carimi comes back. But Carimi is a first-round draft pick. He's playing when he's ready.
Suh v. White - who has more of a reason to lie here? I just don't see what White would have to gain by continuing to lie. Suh on the other hand is quickly gaining the reputation of being a dirty player. So, he has plenty of reasons to lie about this incident. I tend to believe that Suh is the liar.
White is a little flaky, and it's possible he got caught up in the moment, exaggerated and doesn't want to back down now. But you're right. Suh has more motivation to see that part of the story end.
Do the Packers keep using Cobb for returns? One of these times his mistakes are going to cost them a game.
He's their guy. I know he's made some mistakes, but he's already helped them win a couple games and has the capacity to do the same thing a few more times this season. Plus, it's natural to expect some mistakes from rookies.
Whats your opinion on jahvid's concussions? Gone for season? What would you do?
It's impossible for us to judge that. We don't know the severity or the specifics. But the one advantage Best has in any decision he needs to make is the mounds of evidence recently accumulated on the long-term impact of concussions. Even 10 years ago, things would be a lot different. He knows how serious his decision will be.
No more games in London please. Kev, buddy, tell the commish! It's really bad seeing everyone in London not rooting for a particular team but everyone wearing everybody else's jersey. Sickening!
Yeah, but think of the all money the NFL could earn by expanding internationally!
It seems as if Mike Martz and Jay Cutler might not exactly be the right fit. Do you see either going in the next couple years or so?
Well, it's my (minority) opinion that the Bears would be best-served by finding a way for Martz and Culter to make it work. Starting Cutler over again with another OC isn't a recipe for long-temr success.
What did you think of the hit by Pollard last night?
If the NFL made such a big stink about sending teams to London, why not showcase them in a national TV game? I'm from the Chicago area and am a displaced Bears fan and was very disappointed to see the Bears-Bucs game was just a typical regional offering.
Game was marketed at Londoners, not statesiders or whatever we are.
What's your take on Ponders performance sunday?
I thought he showed a lot to be optimistic about. Competitive, showed some fire but also didn't look overwhelmed. Doesn't exactly throw the ball with zip. Something to keep an eye on.
Thank you Kevin! Finally a media member with some sense....
You must have meant that for someone else.
Suh's reputation is a MEDIA creation. He is tough, physical, and dominant. Have you seen him maliciously hurt someone? He hit cutler too hard, yanked a guy down by his hair, and PLAYS TO THE WHISTLE! Jeez!!
As I said earlier, the Delhomme hit was the one play I've seen that I thought was dirty. No way to justify pulling a guy's helmet off.
To be honest, I was happy that Newhouse only gave up two sacks to Allen, haha. But seriously, Mason Crosby is the man. That field goal could've been a record!
He made a 63-yarder in warmups.
More impressive: Only 6 footballs hitting the turf for Rodgers (2 drops, 2 throwaways, 1 spike) or Stark's 4th quarter show?
Rodgers, but Starks definitely gave future opponents something to think of.
Can you please direct all of the Suh whiners to the ESPN Ice Skating Blog? Its football for crying out loud. When guys get hurt the other team talks it up. Its commonplace. When Ray Lewis broke Mendenhall's shoulder 2 years ago, do you think he was shouting apologies from his huddle? Give me a break.
How much do you wanna bet the Packers finally don't win this week?
Yeah, but they're not going to lose. Bank it.
Do you think its time to close the book on the 2012 season for the vikings and take more chances in games as a team in critical situations? For example, when the Vikings punted on 4 and 10... is it time to give the rookie the experiences where he needs to be clutch? And do you think the Vikings should pursue Terrel Owens?
They can't treat these games like it's the preseason. Even if they know they're not going to the playoffs, they still have to create a program based on trying to win games.
What do you think is wrong with the packers pass d? Is it mostly that opposing offenses have figured out how to stretch it or the injuries/age/out of position?
Doesn't seem like there is much of a pass rush other than Clay Matthews. That's a big part of it.
I've noticed that your NFC North at Night blogs are wildly popular. Do you ever read the comments to see what is being talked about?
I assume they get big comments because they're at the top of the blog all night long. I do look at the comments and am often horrified at what I find. :)
White is a little flaky, and it's possible he got caught up in the moment, exaggerated and doesn't want to back down now. But you're right. Suh has more motivation to see that part of the story end.-----Thank You Kevin, Roddy White incurs the rage of NFC North teams.
See Rodgers, Aaron.
To your knowledge, have there been any talks between the Packers and Jermichael's representatives in regards to a new contract?
None have been reported, but the Packers are pretty good about keeping those behind closed doors.
"Well, it's my (minority) opinion that the Bears would be best-served by finding a way for Martz and Culter to make it worse" Freudian slip? Can they actually make it worse?
Ugh. Having some typing issues today.
what is going on with Percy Harvin, guy has been invisible all year...
Right now he has sore ribs that are definitely hampering him. Plays hard and doesn't really protect himself on contact, so he gets hurt.
Can Greg Jennings get some love from SOMEONE!!! He puts up the stats game after game yet gets no recognition!
Shouldn't a little more attention be brought to the fact that I'm probably one of the worst free agent pickups in the history of the Vikings?
Yikes. Right now Berrian might have you beat, though.
Mike Neal would help GB's pass rush whenever he gets on the field
That was part of their plan, for sure. But it's not clear if he's going to play this season.
Percent chance the Vikings just cut ties with Chris Cook?
I'm going to say 20 percent. But like I said earlier, it's hard to know how Frazier will handle this because it's not a common crime NFL coaches have to deal with.
Do you think the Packers might experiment with Cobb running out of the backfield? No wildcat, but a few specialty plays?
They did that on the first play of the second half Sunday, and I think you'll see more of it as they grow more comfortable putting additional duties on his plate.
This has to be the last year we see Driver, any chance this story gains momentum at the end of the season?
I think everyone is being respectful of him because he is being respectful of the situation. I think he probably knows where it is headed and is enjoying the rest of the ride.
Do you think the pack just wanted that Cobb play on tape before they head to San Diego? Something else for them to think about?
No, I think they plan to do that at least a few more times this year.
OK, a few more, guys and gals.
Is Michael Freakin jenkins a bigger part of the gameplan than Percy right now?
I think that's an injury thing with Percy at the moment.
Which number will be higher at the end of the year: Packers' losses or Vikings' wins?
Good one. I'll say Vikings wins, just for kicks.
OK everyone. Thanks so much. Chat with you next week.