HAMPSTEAD – Nobody asked me, but………..What in the name of Slingin’ Sammy Baugh is happening in the National football League?
Back in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s they gave Washington Redskins Quarterback Sammy Baugh the nickname, “Slingin” because he filled the airway with up to 12-15 passes in a game at a time when passing the ball was still a fairly new art as the drifted away from the old single-wing (they call it the “Wildcat” now and they think it’s a new invention) offense where they snapped the ball directly to the tailback.
But in the 10 National Football League games Sunday quarterbacks put the ball up in the air an astonishing 720 times, completing 434 passes for an astronomical 5,067 yards.
HUH??? There was a time in the not-too-distant past when balance was the byword in what may soon be referred to as “The National Fling-It League,” where all the so-called experts said the only way an offense could be successful was a balanced offense between the pass and the run to keep opposing defenses off balance.
My guess is not any more. The 10 teams that played yesterday ran the ball a combined 521 times. Heck, yesterday there were 284 incomplete passes, and that’s not including Wednesday’s game between Dallas and the New York Giants, nor does it obviously include tonight’s two games between Cincinnati and Baltimore or between San Diego and Oakland.
Only one team – the Washington Redskins – ran the ball more than 40 (44) times in the game, and in keeping with the old theory that balance wins games, they surprisingly defeated the New Orleans Saints behind the outstanding play of rookie QB Robert Griffin, III., who was 19-for-26 for 320 yards passing with two touchdown passes and zero interceptions. Griffin carried the ball 10 times for 42 yards rushing in helping the Redskins amass 153 yards on the ground.
Of the 20 teams that played on Sunday, 11 of them ran for 100 yards, and seven of them – San Francisco, N. Y. Jets, Minnesota, Washington, New England, Philadelphia, and Chicago – won, so maybe there is still something to that balance theory.
What amazes me just as much is there were 28 interceptions thrown in the 10 games. Now, with five rookie quarterbacks starting and nearly as many second-year QB’s on the firing line, you might say that was expected.
But of the 28 interceptions, Philadelphia’s Michael Vick threw four, Buffalo’s Ryan Fitzpatrick three, and Detroit’s Matt Stafford threw three. Also throwing picks
were veterans John Skelton (Arizona), Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay), Mark Sanchez (Jets), New Orleans’ Drew Brees (2), K. C.’s Matt Cassell (2), Jake Locker (Minnesota),and Jay Cutler of Chicago.
That’s 19 of the 28 picks. The rookies, you might ask – Russell Wilson (Seattle) had one and RG III had none. Tannehill went up against a pretty good Houston defense and threw three, Andrew Luck (Indianapolis) threw three against the Bears defense, and Brandon Weeden (Cleveland) threw three against a pretty good Philadelphia Eagles defense.
Former Ohio State Coach Woody Hayes was a proponent of the run game, so much so that they said his offense was, “Three yards and a cloud of dust.” Hayes also said there were three things that could happen when you threw the football, and two of the results (incompletions and interceptions) were bad.
No wonder Hayes won a lot of football games.
I guess the game is more exciting for fans when teams fill the airways with the football, and big pass plays result in spectacular touchdowns, but I – for one – still think balance is the better way to go.
That’s what I think, what do you think?
Nobody ask me but………..Let me start off by saying I honestly do not know if Lance Armstrong took drugs or not. That said, according to all I have read Armstrong passed hundreds of drug tests as proof – I think – of his innocence during his extraordinary run of tour titles from 1999-2005.
Now, according to our legal system, “You are considered innocent until proven guilty.” If Armstrong did take hundreds of drug tests and if he passed them all, can someone explain to me how the U. S. Doping Agency says it will strip Armstrong of his unprecedented seven Tour De France titles just because he said he was tired of fighting charges that threatened his legacy.
“There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, ‘Enough is enough,’ and for me that time is now, Armstrong said in an interview with the Associated Press. “The toll this has taken on my family and my work for our foundation, and on me leads me to where I am today – finished with all this nonsense.”
Hey, I agree with the guy! The USADA contends that Armstrong used banned substances as far back as 1996 to boost his performance. Included in the USADA’s alleged evidence was a letter from Armstrong’s former U. S. Postal teammate Floyd Landis who was stripped of his 2006 Tour De France title after a positive drug test.
So, let me understand this, Landis gets caught and does not have a leg to stand on, is stripped of his title, and then decides to say the whole team had, “A complex doping program.” The USADA also alleges 10 of Armstrong’s teammates are willing to testify against him but other than Landis and Tyler Hamilton, who also admitted to drug offenses, no one else has come forward.
Here’s my thought – Lance Armstrong is the greatest cyclist ever, and he is a champion, a winner of seven Tour De France titles and, until you prove it to me otherwise, back off and leave the man alone and let him and his foundation continue to raise money for testicular cancer research.
That’s what I think, what do you think?
Nobody ask me but……….Hey, if you are a fan of high school sports in Pender County and Southern Onslow County, this could be a pretty good week for you, if you are interested.
Starting up in Onslow County, the Dixon volleyball team has a non-conference home game tonight against a pretty good 2A Swansboro team, and an away game on Wednesday at 3A Jacksonville. But the big test is Thursday when the Lady Bulldogs welcome Southwest Onslow to Holly Ridge for a Coastal Plains 1A Conference game that could – even this early in the year – go a long way to deciding the conference title.
And, hey, how about that 2-1 Bulldogs’ football team that is headed to Duplin County for a non-conference game against North Duplin in an attempt to go to 3-1. It’s been quite a while since a Dixon football team was 3-1, so it might be worth the trip.
Pender fans have a lot riding on this week, too, as the Lady Patriots’ volleyball team welcomes Wallace-Rose Hill to Burgaw on Tuesday and brings Lakewood to town on Thursday.
Now the truth is Wallace is not good enough (on paper) to beat Pender but coming in with the Lady Bulldogs is former Pender Coach Ray Horton, who is serving as an assistant with Wallace. Just for fun, they will be playing on the Ray Horton Volleyball Court, which Pender named after Horton when he retired in 2010 after back-to-back NCHSAA 1A state titles.
Now Thursday is a horse of a different color as the Lady Leopards of Lakewood come to town. They are probably the biggest – and maybe the only – threat that could stand in the way of the Lady Patriots in their quest for a Tri-County 1A Conference crown.
And the Patriot team tries to get back on the winning track with a conference home game against Hobbton on Friday.
Down on the east side of Pender County, the Lady Pirates’ volleyball team travels to 4A Laney tonight for what should be a heck of a match before playing a conference game at Clinton on Monday and another at home against Croatan on Thursday.
And what about Topsail’s East Central 2A Conferfence football opening game against 4-0 Northside at 7:30 p.m. on Friday in Hampstead? Now that should be a heck of a football game!
Get out and support your neighborhood schools and the fine young people who work so hard.
That’s what I think, what do you think?