I felt the need to give you a double dose of ranting, today. A little ambitious, I know, but you all deserve it.
I normally write the Rest of the West on a notepad during my lunch break. Today was different, though. I just couldn't bring myself to write about the rest of the AFC West division. My mind wandered, which is not uncommon. I'm usually able to combat my short attention span by putting up some deadlines, but that didn't help. I found my brain running wild with thoughts of the Broncos, instead.
So, that is what this rant is mainly about. If you're still jonesing for a bit of AFC West talk, I did my best to hook you up. I had a brain tangent about Richard Seymour that you may find interesting. I know... it's obvious that he was stupid for punching Ben Roethlisberger in the face but just how stupid was it?
Let the rant begin...
What is Wrong with the Broncos
Forget riding the wave of momentum. The Broncos are officially done. I'm putting the Koolaid aside and coming at you with straight talk. I don't think the Broncos have any chance to make the playoffs this year, but I still have a ton of questions as the season progresses. First of all, and most importantly... What are the Broncos?
It's not as if they lack talent at every position. Yes, there are a few trouble areas but what team doesn't have that? We saw that the Broncos have talent during the game against the Chiefs. The Broncos dominated the first half. There wasn't a single drive in the first half in which we failed to score a touchdown. The talent is evident.
Flash forward 8 days and the Broncos went 1 for 12 on third downs. The talent didn't show up.
The problem isn't a lack of talent, it's inconsistency. I sat and thought about what causes inconsistency in a football team and have come up with the following variables:
- Lack of Discipline
- Lack of Focus
- Lack of Mental Toughness
At any given point of the game, you could see a number of these things playing out. But why? In the opening drive, the Broncos worst play was a 4 yard touchdown scamper by Knowshon Moreno. That's just because he could only get 4 yards on the play. That's the only time that the Broncos scored until the 4th quarter. Talk about inconsistent...
It bothers me that this team struggles because I don't see a quick solution, no matter how many different angles I look at it.The problems seem to be deep rooted somewhere. One change can't fix it all. You fire the coach, you'll set back the team. If Coach Josh McDaniels is fired, the Broncos could maybe make it back to the playoffs around 2015 or so. If the Broncos throw most of the defense away in the offseason and draft for younger players, we're still looking at a few more years to let them develop. These things don't just happen overnight.
At the same time, I'm not of the opinion that scrapping everything would solve our problems, either. To deny that this team has the talent to win games would be to admit that you skipped the Chiefs game. The pieces are clearly coming together, offensively. On defense, unfortunately, things aren't so clear. McDaniels patched it together the best he could with some veterans, hoping that it would hold until the season ended. However, it's evident that the patch has some serious leaks.
It starts up front. We've struggled to pressure the quarterback all season long. I'd love to make up a solid excuse for them, but when the Broncos rushed 3 defensive linemen, Philip Rivers literally took a nap from the boredom. If your defense is dropping 8 men into coverage and praying that Philip Rivers suffers a spell of narcolepsy, you have problems. Even when the Broncos rushed 4 men, Rivers had all day. This needs to be remedied in the offseason.
The Bronocos Secondary is Influenced by the Pass Rush
In my opinion, the defensive line is clearly the problem. Yes, the secondary was exposed against San Diego, but if the Broncos had any kind of pass rush, the game would have played out differently. If you are giving a quarterback all day to throw, said quarterback will have a much larger area to throw the ball. Simultaneously, the secondary has a much larger area to defend.
It's simple mathematics.
Let's assume that you have a wide receiver who can run a 4.5 second 40 yard dash. You give the quarterback 2 seconds to throw the ball. That means the wide receiver will have the opportunity to run 17 yards in a straight line. If you give the same quarterback 5 seconds to throw the ball, the WR will have the opportunity to run 44 yards in a straight line.
That's a straight line. That doesn't even account for the fact that a WR can travel anywhere within the confines of the football field.
That's a ton of space for your secondary to cover. Take into account that the Broncos secondary was playing against Philip Rivers, who is on pace to break Dan Marino's season passing yards record, and you are flirting with disaster.
The Broncos have a lot of work to do, but first on the list shouldn't be "What should we do with Kyle Orton and Tim Tebow?". It should be "How in the world can we get some pressure on the quarterback without blitzing?".
To put it terms of a Thanksgiving feast, Richard Seymour is a full-sized portion of classless jerk with an extra helping of stupid, on the side.
I understand that when you sign your contract with the Raiders that there's a clause at the bottom indicating that you must have at least 2 boneheaded plays per game. I can also understand that Ben Roethlisberger is a polarizing figure and maybe Richard Seymour figured that he'd punish Ben physically... but that punch to Ben Roethlisberger face was still out of line.
Whatever the excuse that Seymour concocted in his head, he was acting like a whiny 14 year old. I've heard his actions called a number of things, since the story unfolded on Sunday: classlesss, juvenile, stupid, funny, pitiful, and uncalled for, among other things. I believe that all of these descriptions can be combined into one easy word.... "Raideresque".
However, something that really shocked me was when I read the following:
I would like to take this time to thank Richard Seymour for punching Ben Roethlisberger in the throat during the Steelers 35-3 victory over the Raiders this weekend. I truly believe the world would be a better place if this happened more often. Unfortunately, due to the unfair nature of the NFL, he will be unjustly fined for his heroic actions.
Granted, this is a mostly satirical site, but if you google search "Seymour did us a favor", you will find a number of results. To that, I say, "Really?".
Punching someone else is doing America "a favor"? How so? Because it shows that you don't know how to conduct yourself like a decent human being?... Forget that, even. You don't even have to possess "a decent human being" gene to realize the stupidity of this. Think about it from this perspective....
Richard Seymour is a football player. He is paid to tackle the ball carrier and knock the quarterback into next week, as long as it's before the play ends. How stupid do you have to be to just cold clock somebody after the play? It's not like the game was over and you will have to wait until the next game to knock someone senseless. Seymour should have done what any rational football player would have done. Line up on the next play, put a swim move on the offensive lineman and smash Ben Roethlisberger into 2012.... you know... after the lockout.
I cannot emphasize how stupid that punch was. You're paid to tackle the quarterback. Hey Richard Seymour, why not just do it on the next play? Not only will you nix a 15 yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and save yourself from getting ejected, you will also be cheered by the fans and add a nice little +1 in your sacks column.
It's a win-win-win-win if you just play football... but instead you chose to be a lose-lose-lose-loser.
Happy Smacksgiving, everyone!!!