Photo by Jeff Lewis
By Jason Lewis
Sentinel Sports Editor
Patriots give up on Moss, then trade him to the Vikings
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick may have taken his control issues a bit too far. He had one of the deadliest weapons in the league in wide receiver Randy Moss, but he pretty much stonewalled Moss for the first four weeks of the season.
Moss had only nine receptions through four games, and this past Monday night against the Miami Dolphins, Moss was thrown to once the entire game and ended up with no catches for the night.
This is not a situation of Moss being past his prime or losing a step. He torched New York Jets cornerback Darrell Revis, who is known as the best in the business at his position, for an easy touchdown earlier this season. Last season Moss finished with 83 receptions for 1,263 yards and 13 touchdowns. But the Patriots decided to go to other targets early in the season.
It appears that Moss, who earlier this season said that he felt that the Patriots would not re-sign him after his contract expires at the end of this season, had been put in Belichick’s doghouse. Moss was pretty much being blackballed in New England.
Belichick has three Super Bowl rings, but that does not mean that his ego should hurt the team. The Patriots are a good team, but they are not as good as the Steelers, Jets, or Ravens in the AFC. Their passing offense has been middle of the road this season. This Patriots team was not in a position to put their best weapon on ice. Moss makes them a better team, and without him they are not a Super Bowl contender.
The fact that they traded Moss for a draft pick (3rd round in next year’s draft) shows that they were just trying to get rid of the guy. This trade does not make this team better right now.
There have been reports that Moss got into a shouting match with the Patriots coach who is in charge of play calling at halftime of the Dolphins game. Would anybody blame Moss for being frustrated? He plays on a passing offense that is not scaring anybody, and they won’t throw the ball to him.
One person who will be more than happy to throw Moss the ball is Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre. The Vikings are off to a rough start, and their receiving core is in shambles.
Sidney Rice, who was Favre’s go to receiver last year, still has not returned from offseason hip surgery, and Percy Harvin has been suffering from migraine headaches.
The big play ability that Moss brings is just what the Vikings need to help them turn their season around. And they were able to get him for just a draft pick. They were able to get better without giving up anything off of their current team.
Murphy’s Law catches up with the 49ers
Murphy’s Law states that, “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.”
That thought should have popped into San Francisco 49ers cornerback Nate Clements’ head.
The 49ers were clinging to a one-point lead, they were about to upset the Atlanta Falcons, and finally get their first win of the season. Clements intercepted a pass with about a minute to go in the game. All he had to do was fall down or run out of bounds and the 49ers offense would have been able to run out the clock.
But Clements had other ideas. He had bigger ideas. He was going to take it to the house.
Well, anything that could go wrong did go wrong on that play.
Clements was run down at the 10 yard line, tackled, and he fumbled the ball, giving it back to the Falcons, who of course, drove down the field for the winning field goal.
Plays like that are why the 49ers are 0-4. Two weeks ago they totally out played the New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football, well, except for those four turnovers. The Saints did not turn the ball over once, and won the game by three points.
At some point head coach Mike Singletary is going to have to worry about his job. The 49ers were supposed to be a team who was going to make the jump to contenders this season, but as it looks right now, they are bottom feeders.
The 49ers are in good company though. The NFC West is filled with bottom feeders. That is by far the worst division in the NFL, and it is embarrassing that one of them will make it to the playoffs.
It looked like the team to come out of that division was going to be the Seattle Seahawks, but seeing that they lost 20-3 against the St. Louis Rams, this division may be up for grabs.
The Arizona Cardinals are going to start an undrafted rookie at quarterback because Derek Anderson is showing that he simply cannot play the position. That’s interesting, because they cut Matt Leinert because he was struggling. It would be hard to believe that an undrafted rookie would be better than Leinert. The Cardinals have pretty much screwed themselves.
Without Vick Eagles sputter
Looks like the Philadelphia Eagles found out how important quarterback Michael Vick is to their offense in their loss to the Donavan McNabb and the Washington Redskins. After Vick left the game in the first half, their offense struggled for the rest of the game, only producing one touchdown and one field goal.
Backup quarterback Kevin Kolb showed that he simply does not have the arm strength to zip the ball downfield like Vick does. Kolb is pretty much a check down quarterback. He cannot consistently work the ball down field, so he dumps the ball off to shorter routes, mostly to running backs, tight ends, and receivers running short routes. He is a dink and dunk quarterback.
Wide receiver DeSean Jackson (Long Beach Poly HS) is the Eagles big player receiver, but he only caught three passes during the game for 19 yards, while running back LeSean McCoy led the team with 12 receptions. The next most receptions for the game was wide receiver Jason Avant, who only had four catches, which only went for 31 yards. Tight end Brent Celek and fullback Owen Schmitt had three receptions each.
The Eagles are not going to be able to survive long without Vick, but the problem with a quarterback like Vick is that what makes him great is what will keep him off the field. An injury was bound to happen because he takes as many hits as a running back. Vick needs to understand that he is not a running back, he is a quarterback.
On the play where he suffered the rib injury, there was no reason for him to take that hit. He was running inside the five-yard line, had a touchdown in his sights, and dove for it. In mid air he was hit by two defenders, really hard. Vick should have slid feet first so that the defenders would not be able to hit him (by rule). The play would have been dead at the two-yard line, but he would have stayed in the game.
If the game is on the line then dive for it, but it was early in a game that they were not that far behind. They most likely would have scored a touchdown with a first and goal from the two yard line.
From the looks of it, Vick will get the starting job back once he returns, because Kolb does not look like he has the physical ability to lead this team anywhere.