Before turning our attention to Week 4, I’d like to put a final coat of polish on something that happened in Week 3. The Broncos, in case you haven’t been paying attention, are good. They ripped the Ravens and Giants in consecutive weeks before setting their sights on the AFC West rival Raiders. Peyton Manning has had Denver’s passing game hitting on all cylinders. If there’s one flaw with the Broncos’ offense it’s that they haven’t been able to run the ball with much consistency. They’re evidently not too concerned. Prior to a goal line play last Monday night, runningbacks Knowshon Moreno, Monte Ball and Ronnie Hillman were reportedly seen doing rock-paper-scissors to determine which of them would get to carry the ball. Incidentally, Hillman won… and the Raiders lost. More on the Broncos in a bit.
You know me. I’m never one to say nice things about the Bears. They gave up 40 points on Sunday, turned the ball over 4 times and lost. Those things make me happy. But here’s something you may not have known. Quarterback Jay Cutler is clutch. The Vikings had Chicago against the ropes in Week 3. After spending much of the second half sulking, Cutler put together a final minute, game-winning drive. And against the Lions on Sunday, trailing 37 – 16 at the end of the 3rd quarter, he nearly did it again. Going back to last season, no quarterback in the league has a higher 4th quarter quarterback rating. Of course the Bears are no longer undefeated and to that I say ha-ha. .
I’m a big fantasy football guy. I recently heard Fantasy Football Today writer and podcaster Dave Richard compare the Washington Redskins defense to the contents of a baby’s dirty diaper. Let me connect the dots for you. He meant that they stink, and his comparison should probably be expanded to include the entire NFC East. The whole division looks and smells like poo. No team has a winning record and they’ve combined to give up 481 points through the first four weeks of the season. The Giants are a train wreck. The Eagles haven’t looked good since the first half of the first game. And the Cowboys are the Cowboys. No matter how good they look, they still find some way to lose. At 1 – 3, the Redskins and their dirty diaper D may still be the favorite to win the division.
So what is the opposite of a dirty diaper? I suppose it would have to be a fine meal. Think about it. And the opposite of the Washington Redskins is the Denver Broncos. Through four games, Peyton Manning has a touchdown to interception ratio of 16 to 0. That’s good. The Broncos have outscored their opponents 179 to 91. That’s pretty solid as well. But after thumping the Raiders last Monday night, Manning expressed concern that his team would have just six days to prepare for their next game. Seriously? Okay, three things here. First, Monday Night Football isn’t exactly new. It’s been around as long as I have. Second, Manning & Co. won their first three games without breaking a sweat. And third, they were playing the Eagles, a team that give up, prior to Sunday, nearly 30 points per game. That average has since gone up. Despite their reduced prep time, Denver put up a franchise record 52 points. One more thing before we move on. The Eagles opened the season by playing three games in just eleven days. Peyton had nothing to complain about. As Cris Carter is so famous for saying, “C’mon Man!”
We’ll never forget Mark Sanchez’s infamous butt fumble. He led the Jets to two straight AFC title games but that one memorable turnover will likely be the defining moment of a turbulent career. And now he has to share that spotlight with another Jets quarterback and, I can’t believe I’m saying this, ANOTHER BUTT FUMBLE. Yes, tragically, incredibly, it’s happened again. And as hard as it may be to believe, Geno Smith’s fumble on Sunday was even more pathetic. There are certain things quarterbacks are coached not to do. Don’t throw off your back foot. Don’t throw across your body. And, this last one doesn’t come up as often but it’s just as important. Don’t try to switch the ball from one hand to the other behind your back while you’re being sacked. Unlike Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith managed to fumble off his own butt, a remarkable feat of athleticism not to mention stupidity. Predictably, both butt fumbles resulted in touchdowns for the other team. Gang Green has shown some signs of improvement over the first month of the season. That said, the Jets are still a circus and it’s doubtful that will change anytime soon.