By
Andy Benoit
· More from Andy·

wk14-thursday-night-preview800 

Houston (2-10) at Jacksonville (3-9)

Thursday, 8:25 PM (ET)

Jaguars offense vs. Texans defense

Common sense (and the game film from Jacksonville’s 13-6 victory over Houston in Week 12) suggests that the Jaguars can’t block J.J. Watt. It’s inevitable that Watt will disrupt, if not outright ruin, at least eight plays. The key for Jacksonville is to make sure those plays don’t become turnovers. That objective suggests a conservative game plan like the one the Jags got by with last time, when a big run by Maurice Jones-Drew and the first big play of the season from rookie wideout Ace Sanders (a catch-and-run off a quick cross-pick against man coverage) set up 10 of Jacksonville’s 13 points. Big plays will have to come out of short-area concepts again, as it’s clear that none of Jacksonville’s receivers can consistently shake Houston’s man coverage downfield. One final note: look for Jacksonville to emphasize quick throws to the outside and chop blocks when throwing inside. Both tactics negate Houston’s knack for deflecting balls at the line of scrimmage.

Texans offense vs. Jaguars defense

Two weeks ago, linebacker Paul Posluszny put on his run-sniffing hat and, with some help from sidekick Geno Hayes, kept Houston’s zone ground game in check. (The Texans mustered a season-low 218 yards of total offense.) Behind Posluszny, cornerbacks Dwayne Gratz and Alan Ball stifled wideouts Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins with press coverage, not just in man-to-man but also in Cover 2 zone with firm jams off the line scrimmage. Johnson helped Jacksonville’s cause by dropping two intermediate slant passes, while Hopkins dropped a critical sideline bomb. With Case Keenum lately looking unsure about how much he’s supposed to run versus how long he should stay in the pocket, the Texans can’t afford to have their top receivers blowing opportunities.

Thursday Night Football vs. The Rest of Television

This game may not seem appealing, but maybe it will after you consider what else is on during the same timeslot. Then again, maybe it won’t.

* Keeping Up With the Kardashians, reruns, 8:00-10:00 p.m. ET, E!

The nice thing about this show is there’s no difference between the reruns and new episodes.

* NBA: Knicks vs. Nets, 8:00 p.m. ET, TNT

Basically Texans vs. Jaguars, but with a basketball.

* Let It Snow, 8:00 p.m. ET, Hallmark Channel

The DirecTV synopsis of this made-for-TV Christmas special: “An executive examines her company’s new property and prepares a presentation to transform the rustic lodge into a new hot spot. She tries to ignore the lodge’s festive celebrations during her stay, but an unexpected romance changes her heart.”

If the Texans extend their losing streak to 11 games, Gary Kubiak should make everyone watch it on the plane trip home.

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30 comments
Unforgiven_3
Unforgiven_3

Wow, this boy thinks he's Superman!!! More like Superdumbass as it's been his defense carrying him all year long! Looks more like a running back to me. Learn more about being a true QB!!!

mediamike77
mediamike77

Spot on! Especially with the 101 level stuff. Greg Cosell hits many of these points with these scramble guys as well.

MalevolentHobo
MalevolentHobo

Oh my.  This is just poor quality analysis, I'm sorry.  


"Most of his “misses” show up as incompletions, but they also get hidden in underachieving completed passes"


Yes, that is true of Cam Newton.  It is also true of every other quarterback in the history of the NFL.  And guess what?  Some of his perfect throws are "hidden" by receivers dropping the ball!


Newton is averaging just 7.15 yards per attempt, 15th among starting quarterbacks. In a system that features so many downfield and intermediate routes such as Carolina’s, he should be somewhere around 8.3 yards, which Brees is getting for New Orleans.


Does the author know that the Panthers have a new offensive?  Newton's yards per attempt have dropped from his first two years, because they are attempting fewer deep passes than in years past.  They have cut back on some of the flashy, high risk high reward plays in exchange for more consistency.  Fewer deep pass attempts and a sharper focus on short and intermediate routes that move the chains more consistently result in a lower YPA.  And to say "oh, his YPA should be around 8.3, just like Drew Brees" without offering any statistical evidence whatsoever is laughable.  Of course Drew Brees' YPA are higher - the Saints offense emphasizes the vertical attack more than any other team in the league!


I can't keep going, I'm actually getting angry at the absurdity of this article . . . ugh.

friendly--neighborhood--scrawler
friendly--neighborhood--scrawler

Cam is already a better QB than Brees and a lot of those so called Elite QB's... 


The only thing Brees has over Cam is Accuracy and better weapons... They play in two different offenses... Brees depends a lot of passing hence the numbers, Cam has yet to play with the offensive weapons other QB's have... A Megatron, Gronk, Graham... even Daulton has a better weapon in the likes of A.J Green... so if you want to compare QB compare all areas of the Game... the Panther is a ball control offense control the clock..... Brees , Manning and others like them depend on other teammates to block and be in the right place everytime to have ANY success on the football field.., they could Never take over the game on their own... if you get in the backfield guys like brees become. worthless, the Seahawks proved it. i have never seen a more odd looking footballball player than Brady when he gets flushed from the pocket... ask Ed Reed....lol.. i will never put my faith in one dementional QB'S if i need one drive under any circumstance.... give me a dual threat any day... The Brady's and Mannings have been successful over the years because of thier teammates but the get the lion share of the praise.... kaepernick against Greenbay showed how a QB can dominate a game... and Kaep, didn't need a defensive backs doing something stupid or a pocket with all day to throw.. he simply put his stamp on that game.... Brees , Manning and others only wish they could dominate a game on those levels... look at Manning against Brady a few weeks ago , the passing game was not working and he became useless on the field enough said... In a few years Cam will have the Weapons and people will see how the position can really be played. Look for Cam to be the better QB this Sunday, like he was when he played Brady...

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

Good write, but one dispute: any serious chance Cam has at becoming elite NFL QB (all college flash) requires his "discarding the sandlot skills that make (him) unique."  There is no in-between on this point (See; Vick & Tebow).  Cunningham & Young had their best years (98 / 95?) when they learned to love the pocket.

I'm impressed that Cam has kept scamper under control to this stage (447y), but if he reverts to those "sandlot skills" you praise, he'll never learn to absorb the hits a great passer must in order to hang-tite and find late-view receivers, never learn to read with proficiency and then fall back on fear-flight whenever it heats up.  It's a challenge and for now, seems to be meeting it.

But CN's got a coach who may understand this point, a run game (DW), nice WR-corps (OL can tighten) and Luke & Tom on D.  

zachdupont92
zachdupont92

Wasn't Drew brees benched for Doug flutie in his 3rd year in leauge for sucking so bad.... at this point in cams career he's doing great compaired to brees so who ever wrote this is a idiot

George
George

I think there would be a lot less "Cam-haters" if he would simply cool it a little on the showboating and worn-out "superman" bit.  

Imagine Brady, or Manning, Marino, Brees, Elway, ANYBODY else doing that - they would be crucified in the press and targeted for destruction by defenses.

But 2 things I'm sure of:  Cam has every right to do what he likes;  

and I'm positive he couldn't care less what anyone else thinks.

john15
john15

Too bad when this "superman" heard the call for"brain" he thought he heard"rain" and ran fo cover.Scam Newton is still just another "lappie" thief.

olansuddeth
olansuddeth

Not only is this article full of cherrypicking, but as per the usual with anything Newton-related, it can't help but take shots at him  personally.  "Self proclaimed Superman" - did I miss this quote?  He does the end zone thing, yes, but that's akin to calling Jimmy Graham a "self proclaimed NBA superstar" for his dunking of the football after a TD. 

Newton absolutely has a ways to go with reading the defense and improving his accuracy, but the guy is on a near historic pace so far... but until he's as good as a first ballot Hall of Famer, it won't be enough.

SamPotts
SamPotts

Horrible display of penmanship here.  Pretty easy to see that Andy is a Saints fan or just hates the panthers.  Either way my friend, watch out for the Riverboat Gambler coming your way.

HarrisNye
HarrisNye

Seriously what was Drew Brees doing in his third year in the NFL? Scoring touchdowns at a rate matched only by Dan Marino or being given up on by the team that drafted him? Pretty sure it was the latter. 

vg24
vg24

in his third year, Drew Brees' stats: 11 games, 2100 yds, 11 TDs, 15 INTs, 58% Comp, 5.9 yards per pass.


Cam this year? 12 games, 2600 yds, 19 TDs, 11 INTs, 62% Comp, 7.15 yards per pass. Oh, and 450 yards rushing and 6 touchdowns too.


Don't you have better things to write about than "he's good but not a hall of famer" articles?

CammieCam
CammieCam

"Newton is still at the 101 level in each subject"  Seriously Andy!  Should Newton also complain after he gets hit hard like Brees does to get flags...  Andy, "Ice Up Son!"

ElijahHorton
ElijahHorton

Whooooooooaaaaaaaaa, your work is usually much better than this, Andy. But this is abysmal cherry-picking at it's worst. First off, that Olsen throw, while ostensibly late, hit Olsen right in the chest and he dropped it. It's hilarious that of all the poor throws or decisions you choose to illustrate your point you selected probably one of the most impressive throws Cam has made the entire season even if it ended up incomplete.


Secondly, the exotic pressure packages had far less to do with Newton than they did with his offensive line. Watch the Arizona Cardinals game: early on, Cam was shredding them but was hurt by bad drops from his receivers. The Cardinals starting sending tons of pressure and the offensive line struggled to compensate, as Cam was constantly under pressure almost immediately on his dropbacks. His receivers also struggled to gain separation as the Arizona defenders started physically manhandling, so much so that Steve Smith blasted the refs afterward for their unwillingness to throw any illegal contact flags. Against Buffalo, the exact same thing occurred as right tackle Byron Bell was simply incapable of stopping Mario Williams from pressuring Cam repeatedly for four sacks. But, seriously, great job cherry-picking without context. Hell, you even failed to show where Cam struggled with the "standard" fronts that his stats look so gaudy on, such as the Patriots game where he was inconsistent in his reads to secondary receivers and had to resort to breaking the pocket instead (for big gains, however.)


As for his "yard per completion" rate of 7.15, you are completely wrong. His yards per completion is 11.5. His yards per ATTEMPT, however, is 7.15, which is a career low but reflective of the fact that he is challenging defenses far less downfield than anything having to do with poor ball placement. (Again, I thought you actually watched the film, right?) It's also league average, and considering the paucity of downfield threats for the Carolina offense, is certainly nothing to be ashamed of. The poor YAC number of Carolina receiver has far more to do with the fact that only one of their receivers is still capable of creating separation with pure speed, and that receiver is prone to dropping passes (Ted Ginn.) Neither a 34-year old Smith or LaFell are going to consistently elude defenders, which is why Cam's YAC numbers increase drastically throwing to the nimble Greg Olsen.


So, uh, yeah. . .I expected better. You so-called "film wonks" are really bad at cherry-picking your cases without much understanding of the underlying offensive schemes or personnel, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised by the poor quality of this article but. . .well, I am.

LawsonGordonBrannan
LawsonGordonBrannan

@friendly--neighborhood--scrawler Do I have your permission to print this out and hang it on my mancave wall?  A gentle remainder that the internet is full of morons?  On the night that Brees passes 50K yards, plus broke 2 NFL records, you are going to claim that a 3rd year QB with one winning season is better?  Child please!

George
George

@zachdupont92 It was worse than that.  In 2005 Brees was with the Chokers and the donkees destroyed his shoulder.  A lot of folks thought he might be DONE.  The chokers offered him a lousy deal so he went with the Aints and the rest is history.

Cam hasn't been through anything like that, other than when the donkees humiliated him  - http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-highlights/0ap2000000092868/Miller-s-super-sack-on-Newton

and made him "kneel before Zod!"  http://sinfl.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/von-miller.jpg  and toke on Von Miller's pipe!

:D


ElijahHorton
ElijahHorton

@George Two words: DISCOUNT DAAAAAAABLE-CHECK!

(and yes, they are two words)

olansuddeth
olansuddeth

@john15 For the record, Newton did not steal a laptop.  He bought a stolen laptop.  Yes, he probably knew why it was at such a good price.  Good thing you never did anything stupid while you were in college.

Oh, wait.  You didn't go to college, did you?

ikunz34
ikunz34

@john15 haha. As a Panthers fan, I find it so funny how much people hate on Cam. If you do this to provoke other people, looking for fights on the internet, stop. Get out from behind your keyboard and stop hating on people that donate more money to charity than you will ever make in your life.

Domo141
Domo141

@ElijahHorton I couldn't have said it better myself. There are so many inconsistencies with this article, I have no choice but to believe that Andy Benoit is a Saints fan trying to give them a "pick me up" after they were just destroyed by a dominant defense. What annoyed me the most about this article was when he said "In a system that features so many downfield and intermediate routes such as Carolina’s....." The only thing I saw after that was blah blah blah blah blah. Mr. Benoit obviously hasn't been watching the Panthers this season. Maybe the Chudzinski-ran Panthers offense featured "so many downfield" routes, but not the conservative Mike Shula offense.  Panthers receivers have also been dropping a lot of deep balls lately. I can think of at least 3 examples off the top of my head within the last couple games where 50+ yard TD's have simply been dropped by Panthers receivers. Sure, Drew Brees is a way better QB than Cam right now, but this article nit picks on issues that Drew Brees hadn't even perfected during his 3rd year in the league. 

JasonRhodes
JasonRhodes

@ElijahHorton Well said, I will also add that the entire article is somewhat foolish, considering it is spent speaking of all the ways Cam is worse than Brees, comparing a 3rd year NFL QB that is clearly ascending, to Brees, who has been in the league 13 years. What did Brees accomplish by his 3rd season? 

friendly--neighborhood--scrawler
friendly--neighborhood--scrawler

Nice..... posting after a Panther lost clown....thats say a lot more about you as a person than my posting that you hate so much....

if you had Lafelle and steve smith with Oslen as you outlet and still improved every year in the league , you are better than anyone with an 0-line and weapons to throw to..ie Brees , ,Manning... Even Brady is in a better Situation... AND the Pats going 11-5 with Cassels as your Starter tells me all i need to know about the System Brady plays in.... Cam has done more with less offensive weapons than any of the top QB's... you are also forgetting Cam is the Panthers Best rusher for 3 straight years... How great would Brees be if he had to do as much for his team as Cam... anyone can be great sitting back in a pocket and playing catch with the likes of Jimmy Graham..

George
George

@ElijahHorton @George That DD-move of Rogers is nowhere NEAR as arrogant / obnoxious as that lame "Superman" bit  - not even close.  

JasonRhodes
JasonRhodes

@ikunz34 @john15 haters always acting as if a 19 year old in his first year in college getting in trouble defines his entire life and career "oh Cam is a cheater and a thief!!!" these constant hater  statements are so old and over used. I think people are allowed to make mistakes, learn from them, and become better people as a result. As a player, he is an absolute beast. As a citizen it appears as if he is charitable and kind.


DODGERFAIL2013
DODGERFAIL2013

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

feel free to tell us when the dream is over and you wake up.

ProfessorGriff
ProfessorGriff

@George @ElijahHorton How so? SOunds like a double standard to me.  The "championship belt" bit is every bit as "arrogant" as Superman, so not sure about your logic there buddy

HuyPham
HuyPham

I don't see where ppl can call him a cheater? Did he get free grades or they changed his grades

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