After eight weeks of action and the trade deadline approaching, we have made it to the halfway point. That means I have heard “7 hours of commercial free football starts right now” 8 times. It never gets old. Every preseason I make my picks for Super Bowl, playoffs and I rank the top 10 QBs, RBs and WRs. In addition to my Monday No So Morning Thoughts and Power Rankings, I am trying to pump up updated rankings and predictions this week. Stay tuned. But for now, here are my Week 8 takes.
I was a big Trubisky supporter last year. I thought he made strides in the right direction from his awful rookie campaign. This is year 3 so what do we get? Do we get the latter or the former? So far, it has been the former. He can’t make accurate throws to put his receivers in the best position. One of the throws that got highlighted yesterday was on a 3rd down play where he threw a low pass to a wide open Allen Robinson. Because of his receiver having to reach for the ball, the defense was able to close in fast enough to where Robinson couldn’t catch and run for the first down just a yard away. He throws that in the right spot and it is a first down. Those situational intricacies matter in wins and losses. Trubisky seems to find himself on the wrong end of that category more often than not.
There is talk surrounding New England and it is not centered around Tom Brady. It is centered around a defense that is not allowing opposing offenses to do much of anything. They scored another defensive touchdown this week against the Browns. Just how good are they? The 2013 Seahawks had one of the best defenses, historically speaking. One of the terms I love referencing is DVOA (Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average). The lower a defense’s DVOA, the better. The 2013 Seahawks bolstered a -30% on their Def DVOA for the season. At the halfway mark, the Patriots are sitting at 37%, which would rank them the second highest all time behind the 91 Eagles. Although, it is an imperfect measurement due to a higher level of developed statistics over the last 10 years. Still great to see on paper though.
Speaking of defense, Nick Bosa is an absolute stud. He is playing a vital part in the success of the 49ers defense in 2019. Joey, Nick’s older brother and Chargers standout, called him an “absolute monster” while Nick was at Ohio State. He had no problem giving way to his younger brother as the better Bosa. In 7 games, he has 7.0 sacks, 13 QB Hits, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and an interception. Absolute monster is right. I just love that guy’s energy he brings to that defense.
Drew Brees returns and the Saints train keeps on rolling. I love that he put Teddy Bridgewater over in the press conference following the win. I love that the crowd exploded when Teddy was shown on the jumbotron in the Dome. I just like that everyone remembers who helped get them where they are before the golden arm of New Orleans takes over again. They put a hurting on the Cardinals 31-9. Brees hung 373 yards and 3 TDs in his return. 7-1 heading into the bye week is a great look for them.
Miami Dolphins Fire Sale
If you know you are bad and you know you can’t win, fire sale. That is exactly what Miami has done in 2019. They are bad and they know it. Might as well scrap it. They sent another solid player in RB Kenyan Drake to the Arizona Cardinals in exchange for picks.
Tom Brady and His Understudies
The most interesting stat I saw this morning is about Tom Brady and two QBs who played under him, Jacoby Brissett and Jimmy Garappolo. The three of them have a combined record of 20-2 this season. WOWZERS! Learn from a winner, become a winner. Got it.
Desperate Eagles, Desperate Win
All is calm in Philly…for now. They trounced the Bills, who despite their record, look like they have some holes. Granted, they’re a solid football team and potential playoff team, but the win looks better on paper. Philly held a players only meeting to address all the noise from the week prior. Did the meeting help long term or was it a one game boost? Only time will tell.