Posted on: January 24, 2008 12:59 pm

Just to be clear NFC title loss NOT Favre's fault

I have heard alot of rumblings, posts and even articles about how Sunday's NFC title loss was Brett Favre's fault. This is beyond laughable.

There are so many directions you can go with this one, where to start. Well let's start first with the coaches. Their game plan seemed to revert back to the Dallas game plan. They assumed they could rape and pillage NY's DB's and that was mistake. They got away from what got them there. The coaches seemed to completely give up on runing the ball when there was no reason to do so. Were the Packer's being successful running the ball, some say no, I say who would no when you only ran it 13 times the whole game. For the first 2.5 quarters the Giants were not very successful running the ball either, but they stayed with it and it paid off in the 4th quarter, Green Bay did not so in the 4th quarter it paid no dividends. My philosophy has always been if you are up or tied you continue to try and run the ball, eventually it will pay off. The coaches made a mistake by getting away from the run too early and not staying with the short passing routes and also they called too many screen plays, those haven't worked all year, why did they think they would work that day????

Next let's talk about the OLine. They pass blocked respectably but their run blocking (on the runs they tried) was atrocious and they have no idea how to block on screen plays, part of why screens have not worked this year. Also they had a few costly penalties on the Oline.

How about wide receivers, basically everyone not named Donald Driver was non-existant, and when their number was called they dropped balls. People say Favre was not great that day, well how about some of the fantatsic passes he put right in the receivers hands and they dropped the ball (can you say Ruvell Martin). The QB can only do so much, the receivers have to hold up their end of the bargain and catch the ball too.

How about let's talk about the defensive line next. They were unable to get pressure on Eli all day, perhaps the coaches should have called more blitzes to help them but this DLine has made a living pressuring QB's with a four man front, suddenly they went silenced on the biggest day of the year.

What's up next??? Well I think it is natural to discuss the linebacking corp. Suddenly the supposed strength of our defense turned in the worst outing I have seen from them in two years. This was not the agressive, good positon, good tackling bunch of the previous 17 games, this unit looked like the squad the Badgers fielded this  year. They were out of position, they were arm tackling, missing tackles, botching coverages. It was like watching the keystone cops in Green Bay uniforms. Very disappointing effort from them.

Then there was our defensive backs. Atari Bigby & Nick Collins were almost non-existant, did we even play our safeties Sunday??? Then there was the travesty of our cornerbacks and the inability to cover Plaxico Burres. Plaxico ate the DB's lunch all day, again perhaps the worst effort we've seen in sometime out of that unit.

How about special teams, we had poor kick coverage giving the Giants good field position countless times, and what about our punter, how many 20 yard or less punts are we going to have to put up with?? I mean weak legged Feagles was out there punting the ball respectably and our guy would have gotten beat by the 14 year old girl who won the punt pass and kick competition. It was pathetic to say the least, if both punters would have had problems I'd give him apass but they didn't, only he did on this miserable day. Crosby was the only bright spot on special teams as he converted what was asked for him (he might be the Packer MVP for this game)

So lastly there was Favre. Did he play his best game ever, no. Did he force a bad pass that got picked off, Yes, but that ball was fumbled and recovered by Green Bay for a first down so that hardly did anything to cost the game. If anything it SHOULD have given them a little more fire. Was that a bad pass that turned into an INT in OT. Yes it was, but the decision and call were fine, it was just a bad pass, that is on Favre, but guess what, they never should have been in OT in the first place. Everyone's love child, Tom Brady, completed a similar percentage of passes int eh AFC title games, he threw for fewer yards than Favre, and he had THREE interceptions, including an INT in the endzone while the Pat's were in the redzone trying to score. Did Brady "win" their game for them, NO, in fact if anything he did everything he could to not win it. Did he lose their game for them though, NO, because the rest of his team stepped up. Maroney ran the ball well, his defense did an acceptable job in keeping the Chargers out of the endzone, his special teams mates did their job in coverage and on punts, and his OLine opened wholes for the running game and his coach didn;t go against what got them there. Point is if ANY, not all, just one of ANY of the areas that played poorly had stepped up their game on Sunday we would be talking about a Green bay win instead of listening to these idiots blame Favre for the loss. He is part of the team and deserves part of the blame (about 10th on my list of many people to blame) but it does not reside "squarely" on his shoulders as some would suggest.

At the end of the day I hope Favre realizes how good this team was, how good he was with them, and how much better they can be next year if he comes back. I hope he does because next year could be the year!!

Posted on: January 18, 2008 11:05 am

WCHA got it wrong

Many of you might have heard that the WCHA ruled on the Friday night Badger-Denver men's hockey game. Their ruling was, "we aren't going to do anything about it". This is a travesty on so many levels I cannot even begin to name them all.

For those who are not aware, the Badgers were down 3-2 with 3.7 seconds left to play. With .4 seconds Matthew Ford fo the Badgers scored the game tying goal. The referree's decided to review the goal on instant replay. After review the goal was disallowed. Apparently the referee used a freeze frame "still" picture in which the puck was in the crease and the clock said 0.00 on it. However that stil picture was a picture of the puck AFTER it had already hit the back of the net and bounced back out. The referee did not use the technology at his disposal and did not review any further. When reviewed PROPERLY it turns out he goal had counted and was in the net with 0.4 seconds left. Denver was awarded the points for the win and of course the Badgers were awarded no points. Keep in mind this was the end of the game with 0.4 seconds left. THe game was over as a center ice face off would not have allowed enough time to get a shot off (kind of like basketball when they say after 0.3 seconds there is not enogh time ot catch and shoot) so regulation was essentially over.

Here is where I really get lost. The WCHA head of officials AND the WCHA admitted a mistake had been made and the goal should have counted and they admitted so BEFORE the Badgers and Denver took the ice for their Saturday game. For those who do not follow college hockey, teams play two game series over the weekends, usually Friday and Saturday nights, so the controversy happened Friday night and the officials admitted there was a mistake on Saturday late afternoon. So please tell me WHY WCHA and NCAA officials, and the teams, could not have just agreed to play the 5 minute overtime period BEFORE the second game on Saturday night. I mean ther is only one five minute OT in college hockey and if it is still tied after that the teams both receive a point and it is declared a tie, it's not like they were going to play all night and it;s not liek it would have had a dramatic effect on Saturday nights game. This would have righted a wrong in an easy and fair manner. This was pointed out by announcers and thousands fo screaming hockey fans. So how come the supposed powers that be couldn't figure this out and get this right??? I know this, if the Badgers miss the NCAA tournament but one game, this season should have a proverbial asterik placed next to it's tournament. We have the technology why can't we get things right the first time???

Posted on: January 16, 2008 12:19 pm

Favre: Resurgent season or NOT?

I will start my first blog with the Packers since they are obviously the hot topic this week. This is something I did a post regarding but seems more appropriate for a blog. I hope you enjoy.

This is not a charmed season for Brett Favre or whatever else you want to call it. Further McCarthy has NOT reigned in Favre. I keep hearing these things and it is the most ridiculous nonsense I have ever heard.

Listen folks, Favre is playing pretty much the same way he has always played and i see no difference in HIS play this year than what I saw last year or even the year before that when he threw those 29 intereceptions.

So what is the difference then you ask??? Well it is pretty simple, it's the team and talent around him. When Favre threw 29 INT's his defense was subpar, he was stripped of his OLine by the GM, his TE's sucked, and he lost all of his WR's and runningbacks to injury. In essence he was trying to win games all by himself, and the funny thing is if you actually watched that season, is that he practically kept him in ball games all by himself. Some naysayers think he lost some games by himself with all those INT's but trust me folks, the only reason they were even in those games in the first place waas because Favre was the only decent player on the field.

Last year the OLine got a little better, the defense slowly got better, and the WR's were a tad better than the year before and hence the team record and Favre's numbers were a little better than the year before.

This year the defense is great, the TE's have really stepped up, the runnign game has gotten better, his OLine has progressed alot through the season and let's face it, this years WR's are as good as Favre has ever had as a whole. Let's illustrate this another way, during the 29 INT season Ruvell Martin was a starter, on this years team Ruvell Martin is the #5 receiver of the 5 receivers on the team. If that doesn't say it all I don't know what does.

Favre has always been able to elevate the level of the team around him BUT let's face it, sometimes there is a water mark. IMO the 4-12 year would have been 1-15 or 0-16 without Favre, with him it was 4-12 so he did elevate that team it's just that that team had a water level of 4-12. Last year Favre noted that this was the most talented team he had ever been on but it lacked experience and a couple of key positions, so their water mark was 8-8 (IMO without Favre they would have been 5-11).

So finally this years team seems to be coming together and finally has enough experience and depth to have a 13-3 season, and home field advantage in the playoffs. This is not magic, this is not Favre having a "charmed" season. McCarthy did nothing special to completely change the play of a 17 year vet who has played the same way his whole career. No, what McCarthy and TT did was FINALLY put a team AROUND Favre and it has paid dividends. Further reason for me to know/believe this i no charmed season is that if/when Favre returns next season, assuming no major injuries or defections in free agency, I actually expect he might have an even BETTER season next year than he had this year.

Anyway wanted to clarify and get that off my chest.

Category: NFL
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or