Week 9 thoughts

Some early week 9 thoughts about the games I watched, and a few I didn’t see:

  1. Cordarelle Patterson is AMAZING! So the Saints shut down the Falcons’ running game? No problem, he just went full WR1 on them! 6 catches for 126 receiving yards later…

  2. Lamar Jackson is my MVP candidate. I never cease to be amazed at the way he carries the Ravens to wins. If he can ever win a Super Bowl, he may enter the conversation for best QB ever.

  3. Are the Titans more dangerous without Derrick Henry? One has to wonder after how they manhandled the Super Bowl-contending Rams. Especially that Titans DST.

  4. Although the Raiders were flat this week, they didn’t completely shut down. The key for them is next week’s game against the Chiefs. If they can beat the Chiefs, then they are a force to be reckoned with. If not, it will be another long season. On the bright side, getting Desean Jackson will help the rest of their offense.

  5. Jacksonville shut down Buffalo’s offense? I only caught a little of that mess, as it was too boring to watch. But I am writing this one off as an aberration. Clearly, Buffalo fell into this trap game. The only way I change my mind is if Jacksonville goes on a serious winning streak, and I refuse to bet on that possibility.

  6. No, I refuse to discuss Miami-Houston, even though I have Jaylen Waddle on both my fantasy teams. He did ok, that’s all I care about.

  7. Was Cincinnati a mirage? After a 41-16 drubbing by the Browns, I would say yes. After beating the Ravens 3 weeks ago, they have fallen to both the Jets (?!) and the Browns. Say goodbye to the great Bengals resurgence narrative. They are, as they have always been, the Bengals. They can always pull grey clouds out of silver linings.

  8. How about them Boys? Dak Prescott managed to semi-salvage a not terrible fantasy day out of an AWFUL game. When you get shellacked by the Broncos, you know you have problems, and the Cowboys do. I am not writing this off as a trap game, like the Bills-Jags, which was at least close. The Boys were never really close to the Broncos, who curb-stomped them. I didn’t watch the game, but watching the score told it all: The Boys fell behind early, got blown out, and then scored some points in garbage time.

  9. Everyone talks about Arizona’s offense, but what about their defense? 5 of their 9 games were double digit fantasy scores. They kept the 49ers offense in check all day, while their offense did their job.

  10. It’s official: The Packers totally screwed the pooch drafting Jordan Love. They pissed off their franchise QB, and got nothing for it. Love was awful against one of the worst defenses in the NFL. You can question Aaron Rodgers handling of COVID, but you can’t question his views about Packers management. They are truly pathetic. The only way I pick up Love is I am truly desperate during a bye week, and he happens to be starting. I can’t even justify keeping him in dynasty after that performance. It could be years before Love ever becomes a QB worth starting.

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  1. Fully agree. I still won’t bump him up on my dynasty trade value chart. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

  2. For an MVP, he would have to be a little more consistent. But then, which QB is these days?

  3. They certainly didn’t fall apart. Mike Vrabel did a great job there in recent years.

  4. I had added D-Jax after he got cut by the Rams, speculating he will end up with the Raiders. Let’s see if he can connect with Carr.

  5. You can only hope for the Bills that week 9 to them was what week 1 was to the Packers.

  6. Two non-factor teams playing each other. Houston isn’t as terrible as I would have thought, but still close enough.

  7. Opposing defenses figured out how to shut Ja’Marr Chase down, and Burrow doesn’t work without him. And was it really the divorce from OBJ that unleashed the entire Browns offense? Needs more data, but will be interesting to watch.

  8. It was a strange game. Which seems to be the week 9 standard.

  9. The Cards are in it to win it this year.

  10. Sorry, too early for that call.

Love didn’t look pretty, but he wasn’t that terrible, either. We’ve been spoiled by Kyler Murray and Justin Herbert, but a plug-and-play rookie QB still hasn’t become the new normal.

However, the special teams should be forced to walk back to Wisconsin. And the o-line was horrible. They were neither able to stop the blitz nor open gaps for the run game.

Opposing defenses don’t blitz Rodgers because they know he only needs a split second to connect with his receivers. But it wasn’t always like that, it’s the result of years of hard work. When Davante Adams entered the league, Rodgers was in his 10th year in the NFL, 7th year starting. He still missed DA on a lot of throws. Building a connection takes time.

As a long-time Cheesehead, a lot of the negativitiy these days reminds of the 2007/2008 offseason. Brett Favre had just played a great season. 356/535 for 4155yd + 28 TDs. 95.7 passer rating, best in a decade. 13-3 record. Made it to the championship game, but lost it in overtime.

And the Packers cut him and replaced him with Rodgers, a 4th year QB who had played (and lost) half a game so far. Common consensus back then was: terrible mistake, the world will come to an end, we will never be great again, how could you do that to Brett Favre, Rodgers will never be as good as he was. The rest is history.

Will the Packers ever have any success with Jordan Love? Yesterday’s performance certainly didn’t suggest it. But at the end of the day, only time can tell. The Packers world didn’t come to an end in 2008. Rodgers struggled in his first year as a starter, improved in the following 2 years, and won the Superbowl in his 4th year.

I’m not saying Love can do the same. Just that it’s too early to rule it out.

Love isn’t a rookie any more. He’s a second year QB. I expect at least a reasonable performance. He’s had a year to learn the offense. I won’t say he can’t ever be good. But right now, he’s not a replacement for Rodgers.

When Rodgers stepped in for Favre, he looked 1000% better than even Favre, who was interception-prone. Love doesn’t even look as good as Favre at this point.

I would add that Favre owns the career record for interceptions, surpassing George Blanda by a wide margin (336 to 277). Rodgers has 92 by comparison. The Packers should kiss Aaron’s left pinky toe and beg him to stay. They will NOT do better than him for quite a few years, even if the light bulb eventually turns on for Love.

That’s a given.

You have to make the cut at some point. And the Packers have never waited for a player to regress. Nor are they known for rushing new players into action.

Let’s assume we can get Rodgers to extend his contract by another 3 years. Then what? Essentially, they’d have to draft another top rookie QB next year then, to get the time they’ll need to build him up.

And then, either of 2 scenarions can happen: either Rodgers starts showing signs of regression, and the Packers have to start the new guy, no matter if he’s ready or not. Or Rodgers pulls a Brady and keeps looking great. Then we’ll have the exact same discussion again in 2 years.

Will the Packers look worse without Rodgers? Of course, they will. In 2008, Rodgers’ first year as a starter, he got 341/536 (63.6% completion ratio) for 4,038 yards, 28 TDs and 13 INTs. The Packers finished the season 6-10 and missed the playoffs.

Whenever they will make the cut, and whoever will be the successor, it will be a step backwards for the Packers. But you have to do it at some point.

That isn’t a bad first season, or even 10th season, for any QB. If the Packers couldn’t win with that, you have to look at the rest of the team blowing it.

And if Jordan Love could put up those numbers next year, I’d say run with him. But he won’t, unless he makes a major leap in performance before then.

It was good, but not elite. Last year, Rodgers was 372/526 (70.7%) for 4,299 yards, 48 TDs and 5 INTs during the regular season.

Rodgers improved over time. It took time to adjust the offense to a system in which Rodgers could operate with maximum efficiency. When Davante Adams entered the stage, it took time to build the connection they now share.

On Sunday, the Packers tried to play an offense that was tailored to Rodgers with a different QB. KC’s brilliant coaching staff knew how to disrupt that plan, and the Packers didn’t make it very difficult for them. Add a whole series of inexplicable and inexcusable errors in plays where the QB wasn’t even involved, and you get one ugly match.

It’s too small a sample size to pass a final judgment on Love. He did look bad, I won’t deny that. But I wouldn’t praise him as the legitimate heir to Rodgers, had he (and the rest of the team) delivered a brillant game.

It is one game. One in which Patrick Mahomes delivered a stat line that was almost identical to Love’s:

Name Cmp Att % Yd TD INT
Love 19 34 55.9 190 1 1
Mahomes 20 37 54.1 166 1 0

I guess we still won’t add the Chiefs to the list of QB-needy teams. (Though, as a Mahomes owner, I have to admit I’m starting to get a little nervous…)

As a Raider fan, I am loving life! Yes, the Raiders have issues, but the Chiefs have worse issues. I always thought Mahomes lacked the maturity to be able to deal with adversity. Since they lost the Super Bowl, we see it in full bloom. He has no patience for the short passing game, preferring the big plays. When teams take away the big plays, Mahomes tries to force things to happen, and then bad things happen. The $500 million man ain’t worth a plugged nickel!

True. But I don’t know if the lost SB was the key factor here. Problem is, KC’s defense was pretty bad so far this season. That puts the offense under a lot of pressure, and that results in Mahomes trying to force the ball downfield a little too often.

Opposing defenses know how to shut the Chiefs down. And Mahomes is a bit too much in love with his own big-play ability. I still think they will bounce back. but for the moment, the Raiders certainly look a lot better…

I see it as a combination of all those factors you just mentioned.

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