Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The New Blog Home

Check me out at  Same old Cleavie, just a new updated location for the self proclaimed expert on all things sports related.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Weekend Observations

I don't know how your fantasy football weekend went, but mine was a complete and total disaster.  In my trash talking league I only had one player (Peyton Manning) score in double digits and three players (CJ Spiller, Jordan Cameron, New Orleans defense) put up a 6 spot which makes me look more like a devil worshiper than a football expert.  In my hurt your feelings league things have gone from bad to worse.  Eddie Lacy, Wes Welker, and The Breesy were no match for RGIII, DeSean Jackson, and Vernon Davis.  At 1-5 it may be time to pull the plug on this experiment.  In my ego stroking work league I started Torrey Smith instead of Vincent Jackson.  That was a 27 point swing and I lost by .8 points.  The three teams that were 1-4 in this league all won their match ups.  Go figure.  There was plenty of fantasy frustration, but at least the Seahawks won.  Here are some observations over the weekend.

Oregon won their football game.  As a 3rd generation UW alum loyal to the program that's all my conscience will allow me to say on this topic.  If I wasn't so loyal I'd tell you Oregon's dominant 3 touchdown victory at Husky Stadium was a masterful performance, Marcus Mariotta should win the Heisman, and Oregon should win the national championship. Excuse me while I vomit.

THE DENVER BRONCOS ARE NOT ALL THAT!  The biggest point spread favorites in the history of the NFL struggled against a winless team that loses by an average of 22 points a game.  a 35-19 victory is not impressive when you're playing the Jacksonville Jaguars.  Peyton Manning embarrassed himself, let down his fantasy owners, and cost Vegas millions of dollars.  Shame on him.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Detroit Tigers pitching staffs deserve better.  Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw gave up 2 runs in two games yet trail the St. Louis Cardinals 0-2  Anibal Sanchez, Max Scherzer, and the Tigers bullpen gave up 1 run over 16 innings, but leave Boston with the series tied 1-1.  You don't have to be a mathematician to realize the results should be different.

Arrowhead Stadium is the loudest Stadium in the NFL.  The Kansas City chiefs crowd reached 137.5 decibels on Sunday breaking the previous record of 136.6 set by the Seahawks fans a few weeks ago.  Congrats to them, but I still think Century Link Field is a tougher place to play.

Friday, October 11, 2013

SeahawkCentric: Seahawks Over Titans

When the Seahawks schedule came out I was looking forward to the homecoming of Jake Locker.  Locker was a big part of resurrecting the Huskies football program by unselfishly turning down $50,000,000 to return for his senior year.  Now I'm thankful he doesn't have to be on the field when the Tennessee Titans come to Century Link Field on Sunday.  It's not a good time to be a Seahawks opponent.

The Hawks suffered an embarrassing defeat at the hands of Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts last Sunday and are eager to get back on the winning track.  There's nothing worse than an angry, motivated Seahawks team looking to put on a dominant performance in front of the 12th man and the millions of doubters who recently jumped off the Seahawks bandwagon.  Locker is a legend in the 206 and doesn't deserve what the Seahawks would have done to him.  It's better he stays on the sidelines as an innocent bystander.

For the record I'm still drinking the Pete Carroll Cool-Aid.  I didn't see anything last Sunday that would suggest the Seahawks won't win the Super Bowl this year.  Certainly they could be better converting on 3rd down and eliminating big plays, but the formula for success remains the same.  Let Russell Wilson do his thing, play solid defense, and allow Marshawn "Beastmode" Lynch to run over opposing teams like a Caterpillar bulldozer.  Pretty simple right?

The Tennessee Titans are no match for the Seattle Seahawks.  Everyone knows this.  There is no chance the Titans will win the game on Sunday.  If the Hawks don't win by 15 or more points I'll shave off all my hair and throw my pinky ring in the lake.  A reckless statement perhaps, but I'll take my chances.  I'll chime in on Monday with all the juicy details of the Seahawks slaughter.  Until then let's all keep a SeahawkCentric state of mind shall we?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Is The UK Ready For The NFL?

Commissioner Roger Goodell has announced the NFL plans to play 3 games in London next year.  Goodell claims the NFL is growing in popularity overseas and the demand has reached a fever pitch.  The commissioner has even insinuated a future franchise in the UK is not out of the question.  Is NFL expansion on another continent a good idea?

Absolutely not.  Until Los Angeles gets a franchise (the 2nd largest market in the United States) how can you justify putting a team in London, England?  It doesn't make a lot of sense to bypass a city that already has a built in fanbase for the sake of trying to expand your product to other markets.  The NFL does just fine here in America without Europe's support.

In addition the travel time would be unfair to teams on the West Coast.  How can you expect Seattle, San Diego, or San Francisco to fly 5,000 miles to a place with a 6 hour time difference?  It's cool for a team to go over there every once in a while, but scheduling games at Wembley stadium on a consistent basis seems a little far fetched to me.  They can't play teams along the Eastern seaboard every game.

Football is not Futbol and the UK is not ready to embrace the NFL wholeheartedly.  They won't support an NFL franchise the same way they support Manchester United, Chelsea, or Tottenham.  I understand the NFL's desire to generate new revenue streams and capitalize on idol curiosity, but that doesn't mean putting teams at a disadvantage for the sake of a few more dollars (especially when your product generates 9 billion already).  I say if it ain't broke don't fix it.  Your thoughts?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Why Josh Freeman Won't Succeed In Minnesota

After the Tampa Bay Buccaneers released Josh Freeman his career was at a crossroads.  It was uncertain whether or not he would get a second chance to redeem himself and prove all the doubters wrong.  In little or no time the Minnesota Vikings came calling.  Their not sold on the prospect of Christian Ponder or Matt Cassel leading their team to the playoffs and view Freeman as a viable option going forward.  Can Josh Freeman lead Minnesota to the promised land?

As much as I'm pulling for Josh I don't think Minnesota is an ideal fit for him.  He will certainly benefit from the league's top rusher in Adrian Peterson and Greg Jennings will be happy to have a quarterback with a strong arm, but Freeman has yet to demonstrate he can run an offense with any consistency.  Over the years Josh has shown flashes of brilliance which is why the Vikings took a chance on him.  They are hoping he is the missing piece like Bret Favre was a few years ago. 

Minnesota will give Josh Freeman every opportunity to succeed which may ultimately be their undoing.  Although he has tremendous physical attributes he's always had a knack for throwing a costly interception or making a poor decision at critical times during the game.  What Minnesota needs is a game manager type like in the mold of Andy Dalton or Alex Smith.  When you have a tremendous running game and a stellar defense to rely on you don't need a quarterback that takes too many chances.

Of course I could be wrong.  Maybe all Josh Freeman needs to become a franchise quarterback again is a change of scenery and a coach that believes in him.  By all accounts the environment in Tampa was completely toxic stunting his growth and development.  When you don't get along with the head coach and your leadership is undermined at every turn it's difficult to be a productive player.  That being said it's the middle of the season and it's hard to re-invent yourself on the fly.  There are lots of things that have to fall into place to have a positive impact.  I don't see the stars aligning just right for Josh Freeman in Minnesota.  Your thoughts?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

David Price Was Right

Dirk Hayhurst...COULDN'T hack it...Tom Verducci wasn't even a water boy in high school...but yet they can still bash a player.  SAVE IT NERDS.

David Price tweet after losing game 2 of the ALCS

Following Saturday's loss to the Boston Red Sox David Price fired back at critics in a Twitter rant that raised a few eyebrows.  In my opinion the subject matter wasn't that controversial, but the media had a field day with it.  They raked Price over the coals for his "insensitive" remarks and portrayed him as the instigator as opposed to the victim of this incident.  Was Price wrong for the comments he made?

Absolutely not.  If it wasn't for David Price the Rays wouldn't even be in the playoffs.  He pitched in must win/elimination games for over a month culminating with a clutch victory over Cleveland in the Wild Card game.  He's physically and emotionally drained and the last thing he needs is some no name nerds knit picking at his performance.

If it was Dennis Eckersley, Ron Darling, or Pedro Martinez making derogatory comments Price would have taken the criticism differently, but Verducci and Hayhurst?  Kick rocks.  David Price has accomplished way too much in his career to have to answer to a bunch of scrubs living vicariously through his experiences.  Perhaps I've watched a few too many Big Bang Theory episodes or Jesse Eisenberg movies, but this nerd revolution is getting out of hand.

Emotions run high in the playoffs.  Players get testy and overreact to things that typically wouldn't bother them.  David Price has since apologized for his outburst saying he feels humbled and ashamed.  Personally I think if reporters did a better job of staying in their lane (especially during the postseason) these confrontations would happen less frequently.  Your thoughts?

Monday, October 7, 2013

SeahawkCentric: Colts Over Seahawks

I didn't think I would have to address the details of a loss this entire season, but I'm mature enough to handle it.  The Seahawks quest for perfection came to a screeching halt Sunday with a loss to the Indianapolis Colts 34-28.

Instead of bashing the referees for ridiculous calls (safeties, phantom pass interference) or pointing fingers at one particular unit (special teams) I will take the high moral ground and give the Colts credit for a spectacular come from behind victory.  Andrew Luck was as good as advertised, T.Y. Hilton played the game of his life, and Adam Vinatieri proved why he's one of the greatest kickers in NFL history.  The Colts should be a factor in the AFC playoff race.

That being said the Seahawks had multiple opportunities to win the game.  I like the way Steven Hauschka knocked down 4 out of 5 field goal attempts, but that number of attempts is more indicative of stalled drives than his superior accuracy.  Although the Hawks gained more yards on the ground and in the air 3rd down conversions really hurt us.  Super Bowl teams don't make excuses though.  Time to pick our heads up and regroup.

We'll see how the team responds to adversity this week.  As you might guess I'm expecting an angry bunch that will practice with intensity and a sense of urgency.  I'll chime in on Friday with my prediction for the Titans game.  Until then let's all keep a SeahawkCentric state of mind shall we?