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Week 8 Wrap-Up

Cleveland Browns 27, St. Louis Rams 20:
It's amazing what a great, top-five-fantasy running back will do for an offense. With Steven Jackson available, the winless Rams established a 14-0 lead over the Browns. Jackson left the game, allowing Cleveland to score the next 24 points of the contest. When they needed Jackson the most, a 3rd-and-1 in the Cleveland's red zone late in the fourth quarter, Brian Leonard failed to gain the yard on two attempts.

Speaking of Jackson, he left the game with a back injury after missing about a month with a groin (thanks, Al Michaels.) You know, going into this season, it would have been nice to know that Jackson has the durability a 90-year-old woman. The Rams should hire a special coach whose job is to bring Jackson's arthritis medication on the road.

The Browns converted a 3rd-and-17 and a 3rd-and-11 on the opening drive of the third quarter. On the next possession, Jerome Harrison had consecutive double-figure runs. Apparently, St. Louis has a bunch of old ladies running around on defense as well. At this point, the Rams should just lose every single game so they can secure the right to draft Glenn Dorsey.

Randy McMichael guaranteed victory over Cleveland. Is this what we've come to? Crappy players guaranteeing wins over the Browns?

Detroit Lions 16, Chicago Bears 7:
Remember the apology I issued to Brian Griese last week? Can I pull a George Costanza and take it back? Griese threw four interceptions and fumbled against the Lions. The Lions! The Bears need someone who can take care of the football. It looks like they won't have a guy like that until next season.

Even though they allowed 56 points to the Eagles earlier this year, the Lions are for real. Everyone laughed at Jon Kitna when he stated that his team could win 10 games this season. Well, he's halfway there - and it looks like he's going to have the last laugh.

Indianapolis Colts 31, Carolina Panthers 7:
During the lead-in to the Colts-Jaguars Monday Night Football game last week, Steve Carell gave some ideas on how to stop Peyton Manning. He included bribery, prayer and hired prostitution (OK, maybe not that last one.) How about not letting him touch the ball? The Panthers scored on an opening drive that lasted 11 minutes! That's one-sixth of the game! If a team can pull that off six times, with five onside kicks in between, Manning wouldn't ever touch the ball!

Meanwhile, Manning completed his first pass at the 12:27 mark of the second quarter, as he started the game 1-of-6 for six yards.

The Colts proved that parity doesn't exist when dealing with them or the Patriots. Indianapolis, sleepwalking the entire afternoon, scored 31 unanswered points despite not having Marvin Harrison.

New York Giants 13, Miami Dolphins 10:
I wish I could have watched this game in its entirety instead of the Eagles-Vikings slopfest broadcasted locally. I wanted to capture the British crowd and get a feel for how much they understood the game. And I thought it was really cool that the entire crowd sang along during God Save the Queen. Instead, I had to watch one crappy team struggle against another one. But I guess the Brits were subjected to the same thing as me.

The Giants' high-pressure defense had no sacks through the first 29 minutes. Cam Cameron did a good job keeping Cleo Lemon off the turf. Unfortunately, his players didn't do him any favors, as they lost three fumbles in the first half.

Jet lag, much? The Dolphins and Giants combined for seven fumbles and only 23 points. A few minutes into the third quarter, Eli Manning was just 5-of-16 for 28 yards.

I also found it cool that the Brits were introduced to the backdoor cover. Cleo Lemon scored a "meaningless" touchdown with two minutes remaining, drawing the margin to within three instead of 10. Considering that the public was draped all over the Giants, I'm willing to bet that there were many angry Englishmen when Manning was kneeling down.

Congratulations to the Dolphins for becoming the first team to surrender more than 1,000 rushing yards the entire season. Randy Mueller deserves this recognition more than anyone; he was responsible for assembling a bunch of old veterans and young no-talents. The Jets also eclipsed the 1,000-yard plateau, but given that they played at 4 p.m., Miami was the first to do it. Just thought I'd point that out.

Tennessee Titans 13, Oakland Raiders 9:
Is anyone surprised that Daunte Culpepper had four fumbles? Prior to the season, I said that if Culpepper had a chance to play enough games, he would have the potential to break the single-season record for fumbles (23). Who holds the record? You guessed it! Daunte Culpepper! He now has seven fumbles in four starts. Unfortunately, half the season is already over.

Vince Young had just 26 net yards, but remember that he's coming off a quadriceps (thanks, Al Michaels.) But it doesn't even matter; the Titans are now 5-2, and Young has another week to heal his quad.

Philadelphia Eagles 23, Minnesota Vikings 16:
The Eagles had to burn a timeout in the first minute of the game because the shot clock was close to zero. I say "shot clock," and not "game clock" because that's what Dick Stockton called it. Shot clock? Seriously?

Give Brad Childress credit for having the guts to do an onside kick against the Eagles in the first quarter. Give even more credit to the Vikings for recovering. Unfortunately, Childress forgot that he had Adrian Peterson in the backfield and called three straight pass plays, resulting in two Kelly Holcomb sacks.

Speaking of Childress, he really needs to invest in a class on how to challenge calls because he asked the referees to review the two most obvious plays of all time. Reggie Brown caught an incredible 30-yard pass in the second quarter. Childress threw the red flag, despite the fact that Brown clearly had both feet inbounds and possession of the ball. Childress also foolishly challenged on an instance where Adrian Peterson clearly had absolute control of the football before he stepped out of the bounds on his own 1. One of the knocks on instant replay is that it slows down the game. Well, not only did Childress stop the flow of the contest, he also surrendered two timeouts, one of which would have been very useful at the end of the game.

Pittsburgh Steelers 24, Cincinnati Bengals 13:
If your quarterback is 14-of-16 for 116 yards in the first half, you shouldn't be losing, let alone trailing by 15. Unless, of course, you're the Bengals, and your defense sucks at life. Ben Roethlisberger finished the opening 30 minutes 13-of-18, with 167 yards and two scores.

At the beginning of the second quarter, Cincinnati had a 4th-and-1 on Pittsburgh's 43, a possession immediately after the Steelers scored a touchdown. Instead of boldly going for it and having confidence in his team, Marvin Lewis punted the ball away. The Steelers scored a touchdown on the next drive. Later in the same period, the Bengals had a 4th-and-1 on Pittsburgh's 2 and decided to kick the field goal. Aside from being nauseatingly conservative, what Lewis did was shy away from the strength of his team (the offense) and depend on a defense that couldn't contain Pittsburgh all afternoon.

Still, despite everything Lewis and his stop unit did to lose the game, the Bengals had a chance to shorten the margin to a field goal with a few minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. The drive unceremoniously came to a close when Kenny Watson fumbled for the second time on Pittsburgh's 14. Cincinnati needs a new running back. Rudi Johnson has struggled, while Watson cannot be counted on to secure the football.

Buffalo Bills 13, New York Jets 3:
Goodbye, Chad Pennington. You're done. Now you can throw interceptions and incompletions playing against little kids in pickup games in the park.

If Pennington starts next week, Eric Mangini must be fired. It's time for Kellen Clemens; not a guy who throws the ball like Ally McBeal. (Editor's Note: Walt would like to apologize to Ally McBeal for insulting her football-throwing ability. McBeal has a much stronger arm than Pennington.)

Speaking of guys deserving to get the pink slip, Jets' offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer needs to go as well. Thomas Jones ran the ball extremely well in the first half, so Schottenheimer naturally shied away from Jones, calling plays for the 8-year-old girl under center.

San Diego Chargers 35, Houston Texans 10:
My upset of the week looked pretty dumb right away. I thought the Chargers would be flat and unfocused after spending a few days in limbo in the wake of the San Diego wildfires. Well, I guess we'll never find out how lucid the Chargers were, because the Texans gave them two touchdowns on a silver platter. The first was a botched punt, the second a pick-six by Matt Schaub.

Houston's scoring unit actually played so poorly the Chargers could have ran the Bobby Boucher offense the entire game and still won; San Diego held a 28-3 lead despite the fact that Philip Rivers threw only four passes. Seriously... kneel, kneel, kneel, punt. Win!

Jacksonville Jaguars 24, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23:
Speaking of the Bobby Boucher offense, the Jaguars held a 17-3 lead despite Quinn Gray's four pass attempts. Kneel, kneel, kneel, punt. Win!

Jeff Garcia had no interceptions going into this contest. He threw his first to... Aaron Glenn. Aaron Glenn!? He sucks! Garcia finished with three picks.

Have I mentioned that I hate the CBS-FOX TV contract? Following the conclusion of the Jets-Bills contest, I was hoping to catch the end of this battle. Didn't happen. CBS went straight to 60 Minutes. Like I said last week, this stupid television contract hurts the average football fan. But I guess Roger Goodell and his entourage doesn't care about the fans, given that he wants to put the Super Bowl in England.

New Orleans Saints 31, San Francisco 49ers 10:
I feel pretty dumb. My friend Ryan stopped by Saturday to watch some of the college football games, including the Florida-Georgia tilt. Ryan asked me, "What's up with Urban Meyer quarterbacks? They all suck in the NFL." I defended Alex Smith, stating that he has improved every year. Well, I'd like to pull a George Costanza (again) and revoke that statement. Smith sucks, almost as much as Chad Pennington.

It didn't surprise me that Smith was terrible. I was shocked, however, that the 49ers' $100 million secondary allowed Drew Brees to complete 31-of-39 passes, 336 yards and four touchdowns. I think it's high time for Nate Clements and Walt Harris to return some of the money San Francisco paid them; Marques Colston and the ultra-dangerous David Patten combined for 13 catches, 194 yards and three scores.

New England Patriots 52, Washington Redskins 7:
52-7!? Holy crap!

Can someone explain to me why Jason Campbell was in the game down 52-0? I understand Joe Gibbs wanted to avoid a shutout, but what if Campbell suffered an injury? Washington's season would have been over just because Gibbs wanted a meaningless score.

Tom Brady now has 30 touchdowns through eight games. He's on pace for 60, which would break Peyton Manning's record by 11. Brady also had 2,431 yards. Translated into 16 games, that's 4,862, which would be 250 short of Dan Marino's mark of 5,084. I think he's having a good year.


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2012: Live 2012 NFL Draft Blog - April 26
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2011: Live 2011 NFL Draft Blog - April 28
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Super Bowl XLVI Live Blog - Feb. 6


2010: Live 2010 NFL Draft Blog - April 22
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Super Bowl XLV Live Blog - Feb. 6


2009: Live 2009 NFL Draft Blog - April 25
2009 Hall of Fame Game Live Blog - Aug. 10
2009 NFL Kickoff Live Blog - Sept. 10
2009 NFL Week 1 Review - Sept. 14
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2009 NFL Week 13 Review - Dec. 6
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2009 NFL Week 16 Review - Dec. 27
2009 NFL Week 17 Review - Jan. 4
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2009 NFL Week 20 Review - Jan. 25
Super Bowl XLIV Live Blog - Feb. 7


2008: Live 2008 NFL Draft Blog - April 26
2008 NFL Kickoff Blog - Sept. 4
NFL Week 1 Review - Sept. 8
NFL Week 2 Review - Sept. 15
NFL Week 3 Review - Sept. 22
NFL Week 4 Review - Sept. 29
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NFL Week 8 Review - Oct. 27
NFL Week 9 Review - Nov. 3
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NFL Week 11 Review - Nov. 17
NFL Week 12 Review - Nov. 24
NFL Week 13 Review - Dec. 1
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NFL Week 16 Review - Dec. 22
NFL Week 17 Review - Dec. 29
NFL Wild Card Playoffs Review - Jan. 4
NFL Divisional Playoffs Review - Jan. 11
NFL Championship Sunday Review - Jan. 19
Super Bowl XLIII Live Blog


2007: NFL Draft: Day 1 Review Blog - April 28
Quarterback Rankings - June 25
NFL Kickoff Blog - Sept. 6
Chief Carl Has Lost a Step - Sept. 9
The NFL Cheated the Patriots - Sept. 16
NFL Week 3 Wrap-Up - Sept. 23
NFL Week 4 Wrap-Up - Sept. 30
NFL Week 5 Wrap-Up - Oct. 7
NFL Week 6 Wrap-Up - Oct. 14
NFL Week 7 Wrap-Up - Oct. 21
NFL Week 8 Wrap-Up - Oct. 28
NFL Week 9 Wrap-Up - Nov. 4
NFL Week 10 Wrap-Up - Nov. 11
NFL Week 11 Wrap-Up - Nov. 18
NFL Week 12 Wrap-Up - Nov. 25
NFL Week 13 Wrap-Up - Dec. 2
NFL Week 14 Wrap-Up - Dec. 9
NFL Week 15 Wrap-Up - Dec. 16
NFL Week 16 Wrap-Up - Dec. 23
NFL Week 17 Wrap-Up - Dec. 30
NFL Week 18 Wrap-Up - Jan. 6
NFL Week 19 Wrap-Up - Jan. 13
2008 Championship Sunday Diary - Jan. 20
Super Bowl XLII Live Blog - Feb. 3


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