|NFL Power Rankings|
Kansas City Chiefs (2-3)No, they are not going ahead of Philly after that miserable show Sunday. Huard out with a bad shoulder, Larry Johnson nine carries for 12 yards, and Bob Gretz, our K.C. correspondent reported that, postgame, "he was dressed and out the door, no shower, no treatment, no conversation." Being a thorough investigative reporter, I'm betting that number three was a result of number one.
Oakland Raiders (2-2)Achtung, angry Raider fans! Lord knows, I'm trying. Recognizing the wickedness of my ways, I yanked them three notches upward after their bye week. This brings a sneer to your faces, I know, but honestly, one little W at San Diego this weekend and you'll be surprised where they end up.
San Francisco 49ers (2-3)Week before last the problem was protection for the QB. Last week against the Ravens it was calling running plays on third and long. They did it three times on third and five, or longer, and got zip for it. I hate to say it, because he's one of the nicest guys in the game, but it's not exactly a ringing endorsement for Trent Dilfer, is it?
Cincinnati Bengals (1-3)Holding them motionless during their bye week, I have absolutely nothing to say about this team, which matches my comment of last week.
Denver Broncos (2-3)Tom Nalen has been my all-pro center ever since the days of Alex Wojciechowicz. But now that he's lost, after bicep surgery, I'm like a rudderless ship. Where do I go? Who do I choose?
Buffalo Bills (1-4)Early evaluation of Trent Edwards. Pretty cool guy. Reminds me of a young Tom Brady. Doesn't get all fluttery in the face of a rush. Acts as if it's more of an annoyance to him.
Minnesota Vikings (1-3)Right side of the O-line is a disaster. Left side was supposed to be the money side, but Bryant McKinnie gives up sacks and all-world Steve Hutchinson is effective at times, clumsy at other times.
Atlanta Falcons (1-4)I honestly don't understand this statistic. Before he was lifted for Byron Leftwich, Joey Harrington had completed 16 passes for 87 yards. I mean that's 5.4 yards per completion. And check some of these receiving numbers. Crumpler, two for four yards. Horn, two for three. Jenkins, one for two. I mean, do they call in the huddle, "OK, two-yard out on set." Or, "One-yard hook on first hut."
New York Jets (1-4)Now the Giants DBs are joining the chorus of "he just can't zip the ball in there," referring to Chad Pennington's arm. He's fought back from much adversity. He's a very fine person. I'm trying not to believe all this arm stuff, but, "it's hard, brother, it's hard," as I once heard Buffalo rookie QB James "Shack" Harris say to Joe Namath on the field after a Jets-Bills game.
New Orleans Saints (0-4)They buried a coffin last summer. It contained the remnants of their fine season. Time to forget and re-dedicate. At 0-3 they dug it up and put it in the locker room. This regard for the afterlife places the Saints at the head of the oh-fers (you know, oh-fer four, oh-fer five, etc.)
Miami Dolphins (0-5)I've been getting e-mails requesting my take on the Trent Green-Travis Johnson incident. Although network commentators always act absolutely amazed at the idea of a QB throwing a block on an end around, it's built into the playbook. Sometimes they just get in the way of somebody. On other occasions they hit the deck and hope the defender falls over them. I've never seen a quarterback called for an illegal cut block on one of these flopperoos. I don't think Green was trying to punish Johnson at knee level. He just kind of folded into the block. Johnson, not seeing Green at all, reacted in an ugly manner, but let's face it, the fear of a knee injury set him off.
St. Louis Rams (0-5)Our man in St. Louis reports the following, from the Cardinals game: "Now it's the safety position that's being leveled. SS Corey Chavous missed the game because of a pectoral injury. Jerome Carter started and Todd Johnson played in the nickel. But Carter suffered a broken bone in his foot in the second quarter and Johnson suffered a sprained neck on a special teams play in the third. That left Oshiomogho Atogwe as the only true safety on the roster." And in the broadcast booth, the Fox announcers were terrified that he'd do something, forcing them to attempt the correct pronunciation of his name.