Anquan Boldin Has the Last Laugh

.

Ten Things I Think I Think

1. I think this is what I liked about Week 1:

a. The play of Denver safety Duke Ihenacho, an undrafted 2012 college free agent from San Jose State. He was everywhere Thursday night.

b. How great is Calvin Johnson? Started this season the way he ended last: with an acrobatic touchdown catch—even if it was overturned.

c. All offseason, the Bengals worked on Andy Dalton throwing the deep ball better. And boom—first quarter, at Chicago, Dalton threw it up deep downfield for A.J. Green. Complete. Gain of 42.

d. Green abused Charles Tillman, an excellent corner.

e. Five sacks for the Titans—four combined from unsung recent second- and third-round picks, linebacker Zach Brown and defensive tackle Jurrell Casey. Love the pressure Tennessee got all day on Ben Roethlisberger.

f. Reggie Bush. At 28, he played with the verve of the 19-year-old USC weapon, diving into the end zone to cap his 77-yard touchdown catch-and-run.

g. Alex Smith, for being Alex Smith. In a West Coast Offense, it’s good enough to win, and Andy Reid’s banking on it. He was 21 of 34 with no turnovers. Chiefs win, 28-2.

h. Andrew Luck, for his eighth fourth-quarter comeback in 17 professional games. Think about that.

i. No question in my mind Brian Hartline will be a more targeted player than Mike Wallace—unless Ryan Tannehill begins forcing the ball to the unhappy Wallace.

j. Kenny Stills, fifth-round pick, Saints. Ridiculous. He’s a field-stretcher in a sophisticated offense, and it’s only Week 1.

k. The Cleveland run defense: 23 Miami carries, 20 yards. Told you Cleveland could be a top-10 defense.

l. Told you to draft Jared Cook, fantasians. Hope you listened.

m. I knew Martellus Bennett would be a great signing for Chicago, and the leaping fingertip touchdown catch on the first Bears touchdown of the year just proved that.

2. I think this is what I didn’t like about Week 1:

a. Two timeouts on the opening drive of the season for the Bucs, and then Josh Freeman getting sacked. Not good.

b. And the safety. The ridiculous safety. No team was as unimpressive early as the Bucs in the first quarter at the Meadowlands.

d. The first big hit of Kenny Vaccaro’s career. He torpedoed into a sliding Matt Ryan, a clear penalty.

e. Christian Ponder, please. You don’t make a careless throw to no one across your body with a 14-0 lead on the road. You don’t make it down 14-0, or down 34-0. Just a foolish throw.

f. On the first play of the Titans’ season, an opening-kickoff return in Pittsburgh, Darius Reynaud picked up a rolling kick and knelt on the goal line. Safety. Steelers, 2-0. Steelers ball. How do you not get the feeling after that if you’re a Titans fan, “Man, it’s going to be a long year?” Lucky for them, it might now be a long year for the Steelers.

g. The Bucs’ composure—13 penalties, 102 yards. Atrocious.

h. The Giants’ ball security—six turnovers. Atrocious.

i. David Wilson needs to go to the Tiki Barber School of Ball Control. I might be serious about that. Barber should call him.

j. The Panthers sure didn’t look explosive on offense against Seattle. They looked cautious.

k. Brandon Weeden: three interceptions in the first 27 minutes. I didn’t watch that game closely. But there’s just something missing with Weeden, something about knowing when to take chances and when to play safe.

l. Long year for the Jags, and it’s Sept. 9. They had 70 yards on their first 13 drives.

3. I think I gained some respect for the old passing games—the downfield, bombs-away passing games—when looking at the men Peyton Manning tied with his seven touchdown passes Thursday. Manning’s stat line: 27 of 42, 462 yards, 11.0 yards per attempt, seven touchdowns, no interceptions. Y.A. Tittle’s in 1963: 27 of 29, 505 yards, 12.9 yards per attempt, seven touchdowns, no interceptions.

4. I think, for those who tell you Peyton Manning has become a dinker-and-dunker in his dotage, tell them this: His average yards per attempt in 14 Indianapolis seasons was 7.6. His yards per attempt in 17 Denver games: 8.2.

5. I think you don’t want to overrate the first game of the season, especially when it was as horrendous as the one Jacksonville played Sunday in the 28-2 loss to Kansas City. But unless Blaine Gabbert’s still-healing right thumb was a drag on his performance, it’s only a matter of time before the Jags will come to the realization he can’t do it. Watch the tape of the game. How many times does he have a receiver open, within 10 yards, and the receiver has to lunge for the ball or reach way around to try to catch it? He had a few drops too, but playing quarterback is about moving the chains and being crisp, and it looks like Gene Smith’s last big gift to the franchise is going to add another year to the rebuilding process of the Jaguars.

6. I think Mike Wallace has to look himself in the mirror today and say, “What a dumb thing I said yesterday about being ticked to not be a key guy in the gameplan. We won. I was selfish.’’ It’s patently absurd, after winning the first game of the season on the road, to complain about your role. It’s one game, dude. Can’t turn into T.O. after one game.

7. I think, as I reported on NBC over the weekend, that we can have whatever opinion we want about the fruitlessness of the mission Tim Tebow is on, but he is determined to give the quarterback position one more concentrated try. And the NFL quarterback position, not in Canada or the Arena League. Tebow will begin throwing with a quarterback coach this week, and he’ll stay in shape so that if there’s a spate of injuries and some team calls, he’ll be ready. And yes, it’s true: USA Rugby called to inquire whether Tebow would be interested in playing, because the organization believes he has the perfect body—massive shoulders, bull-like legs—to succeed in that game. Tebow believes he’s proven he doesn’t have to be a circus sideshow, as he was with the Jets, to play with a team; his experience with the Patriots shows it’s possible for him to be one of the guys, and not a daily headline. At least that’s his belief. I still maintain in the right place—which the 2012 Jets were, if they’d done with Tebow what Rex Ryan and Mike Tannenbaum intended—Tebow can have a role as a changeup quarterback on a winning team.

8. I think in the realm of unintended consequences, the two penalties called on Tampa Bay safeties for hits on Jets receivers—because the receiver was defenseless or because the hit was very marginally high—will continue the trend of defensive backs lining up receivers and whacking them in the legs. What was ridiculous, I thought, was Jeremy Kerley curling up in anticipation of a hit, and Mark Barron and Dashon Goldson going low on him (I mean, where else could they go?) and getting flagged for unnecessary roughness. It is a rough sport! If a receiver gets in a fetal position and is attempting to go forward, are defenders supposed to leave him alone, or hit him? Said Goldson: “I can’t think about it. I can’t play timid. If I’m not in a position to get a guy clean, then I’ve got to go low. That’s just the way it is.”

9. I think Jerry Jones, Dan Snyder and Bob Kraft—and all the other owners in the league who believe, strangely, in attracting fans to the stadium rather than repelling them—are laughing this morning at this: Notre Dame and Michigan celebrated the largest crowd in college football history (115,109) Saturday night in Ann Arbor by apparently deciding not to play again in Ann Arbor until at least 2020, and maybe never again. Such a good idea, to give the public less of what it’s crying out for.

10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:

a. Remember one thing, all you Springsteenians, who wanted to see a more Jersey look for the Super Bowl halftime show and got Bruno Mars instead: Halftime shows are done to attract a non-football audience, including the international audience. Halftime shows are designed to hit a different demographic. I couldn’t tell you the difference between Bruno Mars and a Mars bar. But 56-year-old men aren’t the focus of the league when it comes to halftime shows at the Super Bowl.

b. I have to tell you it got quiet in the NBC Football Night in America Red Sox Wing when the Jacoby Ellsbury foot news came in Sunday. He’ll miss some time with an injury.

c. This is saying a lot, but the just-completed four-game Yankees-Red Sox series is in the modern era top five Yankees-Red Sox series for weirdness.

d. Thanks, Lake Bell, for being a fan of The MMQB. You’re good at movies too.

e. Feeling stupid for ignoring Breaking Bad.

f. Denver’s so underrated.

Talk Back

Have a question or comment for Peter? Email him at talkback@themmqb.com and it might be included in Tuesday's mailbag.

g. But the one thing about the city, if you’re there once or three times a year for short stays, is how dehydration just sneaks up on you. Last Wednesday, in mid-afternoon, I’m wondering why I have this headache. I never get headaches. And a friend said to me, “Drink water. Drink a lot of water here. That’s from dehydration.” He was right.

h. Coffeenerdness: Nice espresso, Dazbog. That’s the Denver coffee place I hit a couple of times last week. Less bitter than most espressos.

i. Beernerdness: Subbing a wine this week: I remembered having a Cabernet called “Educated Guess” a few months ago in New Jersey. The owner of the place told me it was a Wayne Gretzky wine from the Napa Valley, and it was terrific. Found it in Denver Wednesday night at our NBC dinner, and the crowd went wild. Very good value.

Who I Like Tonight

Washington 31, Philadelphia 23. Robert Griffin III and Mike Vick set a land-speed record for number of plays (2,349) in a 60-minute game. I don’t trust the Eagles defense.

Houston 34, San Diego 16. With Manti Te’o on the sidelines with a foot injury that’s idled him for 31 days, America will see one of the great names in the game instead—inside ‘backer Bront Bird. Arian Foster is not amused, or intimidated.

Read Andy Benoit’s Deep Dive into the matchups.

The Adieu Haiku

I know. Raiders lost.
But my Week 1 takeaway?
Oakland’s not boring.

PREV 1 2 3 4 5VIEW AS A SINGLE PAGE
321 comments
Saintsman3
Saintsman3

Peter, it's incredible that a seemingly intelligent person like you could have missed Breaking Bad the past 6 years.  It's the best TV ever, with the possible exception of the Andy Griffith Show.

A.F.Davis
A.F.Davis

Peter...just subscribe to Netflix streaming service, you still have time to get on the Breaking Bad train!


It'll be worth...trust me!

wavemkr
wavemkr

Cowboys defense gets 6 turnovers, one of which occurred on special teams (Cowboys ST player Dwayne Harris voted NFC ST player of the week by NFL) and yet not one mention in PK's def or ST players of the week.  Let the Peter King Cowboy hating bias continue....... additional PK Cowboy hating bias..... Cowboys at 10, not because they beat the Giants, but because of "luck" because a Jersey Gov was present and because David Wilson fumbled (note he fumbled twice, Eli threw 3 INTs).  And of course be sure and remind everyone that the Giants had won four in a row at Cowboys Stadium, because that was relevant to our power ranking.

rokrjon
rokrjon

Thanks to you, I drafted Jared Cook and with my other players, I put up 218 in my PPR league.  Unfortunately, I was playing the guy who had Peyton Manning and I lost 225 - 218. 

KirkM
KirkM

I don't get the Jets hate, Peter.......???

You know...you had three Buccaneer items in your "10 things you didn't like" and I'm asking, especially concerning the penalties, do you not think the Jets defense had SOMETHING to do with that?  The media "pile on" has been insanely over done so far.  The whole "ticky tack" personal foul penalty wasn't so ticky tack.  Geno Smith is a QB and he was a full yard out of bounds.  If that were Tom Brady you would have verbally destroyed the young TB defender and some would have called for a fine.  Victim of circumstance or luck...they won the game.  A wise Defensive Coordinator, who is now the Seattle Head Coach, once told me, "You need 4 things to win a football game...talent, preparation, execution & luck."  The football Gods rarely shine on the Jets...on Sunday, they shined for a short bit.

It's quite clear the Jets defense is going to be something special as the year goes on...especially against the run and pass rush.  Personally, I don't think NE survives tomorrow night.  Too many injuries and the Jets defense has too many similarities to the Lions and I think you see a repeat of Preseason game 3...although the score might not be as high.  I expect something like 17-10 Jets.  In fact, I have either the Jets or Dolphins winning the division this year.  NE doesn't have the horses right now, they are relying on a brittle WR and, until they have Gronk back, are going to struggle for the "big play."  The loss of Vereen is huge as well.  By the time they are healthy the season will have passed them by.  9-7 wins the AFC East this year.  I'm calling it now.

I'm fairly football savvy, having played quite a few years myself, and I think you can read quite a bit into the preseason with the way the new collective bargaining agreement has training camp locked down.  These guys simply are not getting the practice anymore.  The preseason games are a far greater indicator as to how the teams are going to perform.  Philadelphia being the exception due to Kelley wanting to keep his "system" under wraps.

Outside the 49'er, Seattle, Denver & the Texans...EVERYONE looks very vulnerable.

ProfessorGriff
ProfessorGriff

stop talking about teblow - its a shame how much you ride the guy's genitals and he isn't even playing in the NFL

Shane Mac
Shane Mac

I believe you should have included Rey Maluega of Cincy in your GOAT list.  Senseless personal foul that cinched the game for da Bears.

thebyron
thebyron

Not sure if I agree with your take on the Super Bowl halftime shows.  In the past decade they've had elder statesmen Paul McCartney, The Who, Tom Petty, The Rolling Stones, and Bruce Springsteen.  The Stones in particular were a ratings bonanza.

In my opinion these were all better performances than Madonna or Beyonce (you can argue about The Who; their performance was pretty mediocre) and FAR better than the awful spectacle that was The Black-Eyed Peas.

dhe1966
dhe1966

Just for the record, Michigan didn't decide not to play Notre Dame any more in Ann Arbor. ND surprised Michigan's Athletic Director last year with a letter cancelling the last 3 years of the contract. ND is keeping Big Ten lesser powers Purdue and Michigan State on their schedule, but for some reason decide to stop playing Michigan (two 38-0 demolishings in the last decade might have something to do with their decision).

SaraTonin
SaraTonin

Great example of a Sports Writer talking out of both sides of his face:


Leaves Atlanta out of his "fine 15" (whatever, I would wipe my butt with it if it wasn't digital), then later appoints Sean Payton Coach of the Week for (Qouting) beating "the FORMIDABLE Falcons."


Which is it, Petie? Are they "formidable? Or beneath your notice? Or is your mouth too strongly attached to your favs that you can't even see what you're writing?


Take
Take

Peter King is a Patriots fan in case none of you knew that:

The Raiders and Pryor DID BEAT the Colts.. The Refs beat the Raiders. There is no doubt the NFL did not want "The Bad Guys" to go into little Indianapolis in their nice stadium and soil their home opening game.. Luck ran for a TD with 5 min left, a TD that should of been called back. I never seen more holding in 1 play in 25 years of watching football. Raiders players including Charles Woodson were irate when they need no flags. In fact it was so obvious they all stared to walk back to where the ball should of been spotted. The Raiders did not even think for one moment The Refs would actually award that TD to Luck do to the blatant holding...

By the way I should also point out it was not just that one play, Both Luck TD passes as well there was massive holding. Luck got hit on both plays he threw that TD but not before at one point a Colts player was in his back holding a Raiders D line man leg for dear life BUT no flag....Touch down stands.. If that was The Oakland Raiders are you telling me the Touch Downs would stand?? I would be willing to bet my house that the Touch down would be called back.. Flags would be flying EVERY WHERE...

I'm not a Raiders fan, I just watch football and I'm bias but it does not a Peter King or any "expert" to see the NFL has been screwing the Raiders for years and that Colts game was obvious yet the media will never admit to it because the media also hates the Raiders. I believe the media hates The Raiders so much is because of Al Davis. The media loved to ick on Al Davis but why? The answer is they hate him, they despise him, because Al Davis never had a "source" when he was running the Raiders. The media simply had to guess what Al was going to do next un like other teams where the media always quotes their "sources" I believe this is the real reason why the media hates the Raiders.

JamieBergman
JamieBergman

Sorry to say that this is the last time I am going to read MMQB.

After last week's PC commentary about the Redskins, I spent the entire time reading this weeks wondering when I was going to run into a political statement that annoyed me. If it has gotten to that point, then it is time to go elsewhere for my sports reading entertainment.

Peter, I enjoyed reading your work, and as a football writer you are incredible. Good luck in the future.

epste696
epste696

Offer the option to print without images.

melanic.whoosh
melanic.whoosh

How did Danny Trevathan not make the GOTW list? How much more goatesque than dropping the ball at the one-yard-line while prematurely celebrating his TD does he have to get?

MarkBravura
MarkBravura

David DeCastro deserved a spot in your Goats of the Week for his perfected targeted chop block on his teammate Maurkice Pouncey that ended the Steelers' center's season. He couldn't have delivered a more accurate shot if he were a trained military sniper.

smileyrebel
smileyrebel

I calculate the average StubHub ticket price as:  Irish: $148, Patriots: $139, Michigan: $88, Cowboys/Washington $44.  I laugh at the patriots fans shelling out $139/game with no Tebow time included.

Carnifex
Carnifex

 One thing I think I think: If Peter King is going to complain about Bill Leavy, then he should at least have the journalistic integrity to mention that the league also rescinded the personal foul against Joe Staley which offset Clay Matthew's personal foul. It SHOULD have been first-and-goal, not 4th and 2 nor 3rd and 6. Let's not have a Packers pity party.

nyjets011269
nyjets011269

A ticky tack call ?  Not only was Smith clearly out of bounds but he is a QB.  Any extra contact against a QB is going to be called regardless.  That's just the way it is now.

macoah
macoah

great call on the educated guess. we just finished a blind tasting of cabernets at park and orchard in east rutherford, n.j. educated guess was the big winner by far. our invite to visit during super bowl week is still open. we are only a few minutes from the stadium

Richard Long
Richard Long

What I would like to know is what a terrible call, like the one in the GB/SF game, results in for the referee?  And what are the results of the grading of refs?  Remember last year, during the strike, everyone complained about how the replacement refs impacted games.  Gee, the regular guys aren't always better, are they?

IvanAJagerbomb
IvanAJagerbomb

Why do so many sports writers incorporate Twitter posts in their stories...many who make the entire article about one tweet?  If people cared about those comments, we can just do to Twitter directly.

JaredMiles
JaredMiles

"Sunday’s leading rusher: Terrelle Pryor, quarterback, Oakland. In his first NFL start, Pryor rushed 13 times for 112 yards."

It was his second NFL start.

seamillguesthouse
seamillguesthouse

I understand Peter King is not going to mention the name Redskins any more in his articles  or on this website.

Does he think his opinions are so important that he can pressure a  long standing NFL team to change there name because suddenly he agrees with some politically correct bozo. I say boycott Kings  MMQB  website and his inflated opinion of himself..

bobinpowell
bobinpowell

I think that's a silly comment about Weeden, especially since you didn't watch the game closely.

consigliari51
consigliari51

Yes, playing with a bum leg in the season opener brings to mind one of America's most decorated war heroes.  Excellent analogy.  Next week we should discuss how much Zach Sudfeld is like MacArthur.  

Funny.  Anyone else makes such an absurd comment and PK would spend half his article giving them a stern lecture about how inappopriate it was.  But hey, it's the Pats, so I guess hyperbole is warranted, huh?

CharlesKellett
CharlesKellett

Peter, your article falsely implies that Michigan jointly decided to not continue the Notre Dame series. That is incorrect. Notre Dame unilaterally cancelled future matchups.

Chickens.

Mike26
Mike26

@dhe1966 ND hasn't been any more relevant the past 30 years than Wisconsin, Georgia, Texas A&M, etc.  They are legendary only in their minds.

Tyler_Durden
Tyler_Durden

@Take a fan blaming the refs for their team's loss? Wow... never seen that before... lol

Shane Mac
Shane Mac

@Carnifex :  Even as a Packer fan, I agree.  As it was happening I thought "No, don't do it Clay"  and he did it.  I thought the penalty on Staley was bogus and it should have been first and goal on the 3 yard line.  The Packers were outplayed again by the 49ers - a superior team in most aspects to Green Bay.

PhilipDutton
PhilipDutton

@nyjets011269  Couldn't agree more! And if that were Tom Brady being shoved when he was clearly out of bounds you can be sure the King would have called it "the right call". Peter King is biased against certain teams and many of us find it deplorable and a drag on the entire MMQB site. It gets old when King keeps using the word "circus" when mentioning the Jets. Try something original in your efforts, Peter.

Carnifex
Carnifex

@nyjets011269 they told Harbaugh that running QBs can be hit like RBs... but it was out of bounds, so I agree with the call. But quarterbacks running for yards are allowed to be hit hard if the ball's in their hands

WillWillis1
WillWillis1

@IvanAJagerbomb PK has been doing it for a couple of years now, though personally I always thought his motivation in drawing his readers' attention to Twitter was really to gain more followers of his own there.

I don't care either way though. About 1/3 of his columns in general are padding/filler anyway. I read what interests me and skip what doesn't.

Carnifex
Carnifex

@seamillguesthouse his writing has gotten slightly less insightful and this column progressively more uninteresting every year, yet his ego is through the roof. there's a portrait of him trying in an attic somewhere. if there's not a serious turnover soon, I won't be reading this fluff and presumption much longer

JPM
JPM

@seamillguesthouse I say lead the way, seamillguesthouse.  Show some commitment.  Don't post here anymore.

KevinMoss
KevinMoss

@CharlesKellett No matter what, it is a shame because it is one of the greatest rivalries in NCAA football.  ESPECIALLY is you live in South Bend (2 miles from Michigan border) and EVERYONE in the area loves or hates one of the two teams.

KevinMoss
KevinMoss

@CharlesKellett And several times in recent years Michigan has spoken of cancelling the contract, too...  This is the pot-calling-the-kettle-black...

Carnifex
Carnifex

@Mike26 @Richard Long shoulda been first and goal, Staley did nothing wrong unless getting punched in the face by goldilocks is illegal now

OK
OK

@KevinMoss @CharlesKellett  

Nice try, but that carries about as much weight as the Father saying, "But I was just trying to help the altar boy all those times in the rectory, Judge."

Notre Dame dumped the series, and not even Touchdown Jesus changes that FACT, chump.

Shane Mac
Shane Mac

@OK @JPM @seamillguesthouse I mean they got the Hogs guys as their semi-mascot already and the pig noses would be a great give-away to their fans entering the stadium.

OK
OK

@Carnifex  @CharlesKellett 

Wolverines fans also hunger for Notre Dame's litany of pedophiles to defend.

Perhaps the Fighting Irish and the Penn State Sanduskys ought to join the same conference. We'll throw in SMU, USC, and a few SEC diploma mills for additional corruption purposes.

OK
OK

@KevinMoss@CharlesKellett 

More factual history to drive you and your feeble bs back to the record, preacher. Not to fear, you'll always have Navy to horsewhip on Homecoming and Predatory Priests Defense Fund Day.

#####

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/college/notre-dame-pulls-series-michigan-fighting-irish-play-scheduled-game-michigan-2014-article-1.1168144

Notre Dame pulls out of series with Michigan, Fighting Irish will play last scheduled game against Michigan in 2014

Irish AD informs Michigan counterpart of decision before Saturday's game to avoid an automatic renewal of the contract.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 5:18 PM

Updated: Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 5:18 PM 

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Notre Dame is opting out of its series with Michigan, meaning the last scheduled game between college football’s winningest programs will take place in 2014.

A letter from Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick to Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon cancelling games in 2015-2017 was obtained by The Associated Press on Tuesday through a Freedom of Information Act request.

Brandon told the AP he was handed the letter on the field in South Bend, Ind., about an hour before Saturday night’s game.

Newsletter