Posts Tagged ‘Kansas City Chiefs’

Washington was Right About Cousins All Along

Thursday, February 1st, 2018

by Gus Griffin

gus

 

 

 

 

KC

With the agreement to acquire Kansas City QB Alex Smith, the marriage between Washington and its QB, Kirk Cousins, is all but over. Though Smith’s contract extension details have yet to come out, my guess is that it is front loaded for him and back end friendly, which would allow Washington to get out should he start to decline quickly. Cousins will become a free agent and command in the range of $27-29 million per year, making him the highest paid player in the league.

The issue was not if Washington would have saved money signing QB Kirk Cousins to a long-term deal two years ago. They obviously would have. If I had purchased a nice car in 2016, it would have cost me less than in 2018. But could I have afforded the maintenance and up-keep necessary for that vehicle to function at its maximum best? If the answer is no, why buy the car?

The issue was if they had signed him, would they have been any better off than the Baltimore Ravens have been since they re-signed Joe Flacco? Is Kirk Cousins a top 5-10 caliber QB that will keep you in the hunt for a Super Bowl every year? If the answers to these two questions are no, then Washington was right all along about Cousins.

Kirk Cousins is a more than adequate starting NFL QB. He was never as bad as ESPN talk show host Bomani Jones suggested, comparing him to Ryan Fitzpatrick. He also is not a top 5-10 guy, which is the only QBs teams should lock up with the big money.  The two glaring concerns I have about Cousins as a QB are: 1) that he is not a confident down field passer; and 2) he is not a good improviser. These happen to be the two QB aspects that defenses fear the most. They do not fear a guy whom they know will stay in the pocket and throw short passes most of the day. That is what Kirk Cousins has been.

It’s about now when some reading this will respond with stats. They do in fact look good for Cousins over the past 3 seasons. They are also terribly misleading. At no time in football history have QB stats been as artificially embellished as they are today. There are several factors that have created this environment: 1) the generational influence of the West Coast offense which emphasizes the short passing game (of which Washington Head coach Jay Gruden is a disciple) and; 2) increased defensive sophistication in scheming, especially in taking away big plays.  As a result, what was at one time the 3rd or 4th option, the check down pass to a back has now become the second and sometimes primary target. This leads to higher pass completion percentages and appeals to the defensive-minded coaches as well, as it is more risk averse. These same coaches are from the school of thought that says, “just don’t lose us the game”. This philosophy leads to a game manager mindset in the QB and less down field passes.

Don’t feel bad for Cousins. He is going to benefit greatly from a perfect storm of factors, most of all being the fact that the demand for quality QBs so far outweighs the supply. That is how the likes of Brock Osweiller and Mike Glennon could cash in and neither are near as good as Cousins. Some team will make Cousins the highest paid QB/player in league history. That’s just the way this thing works.

It’s not that you can’t win a Super Bowl with Kirk Cousins as your QB. You can. The 2000 Ravens won with Trent Dilfer, the 2002 Bucs won with a Brad Johnson past his prime, and of course the 2015 Broncos won with a washed-up Peyton Manning. What did all 3 of those teams have in common: all-time great defenses and the inability to sustain the success on an annual basis. Bill Cowher kept my Steelers in contention with a QB list of Neil O’Donnell, Kordell Stewart, and Tommy Maddox. But they could not get over the hump until Big Ben came. The Steelers were also an aberration in that they draft and develop players on an exceptionally high level, which makes them less desperate to over pay to sign free agents or re-sign their own proven players.

Don’t let this year’s NFL conference champion QBs fool you. Yes, you can win with a less than top 5-10 QB, but good luck at sustaining a team in the Super Bowl hunt without one. There are only two viable tactics for getting an NFL QB: you either lock up the top 5-10 guy to a long-term deal or you get a guy at a discount and invest the rest in your defense and other areas of your team. What hamstrings a team is when it locks up a guy in the 12-15 range, which is where Cousins is, to a long term deal that won’t allow it to add the talent around him.

Washington concluded this about Cousins and they were right. As one analyst put it, they wanted a prenuptial agreement with him and he found it insulting and refused to sign it, knowing what he could get on the free market. I don’t blame either side.

 

Gus Griffin, for War Room Sports

Making The Case For Jamaal Charles As The NFL’s MVP

Saturday, December 21st, 2013

by Christian Roberts

Christian Roberts Blog

 

 

 

 

 

2013 Statistics: 246 Carries, 1,181 Rushing Yards, 11 TDs, 65 Receptions, 655 Receiving Yards, 7 TDs

2013 Statistics: 246 Carries, 1,181 Rushing Yards, 11 TDs, 65 Receptions,
655 Receiving Yards, 7 TDs

Jamaal Charles is becoming one of the most dangerous offensive weapons in all of the NFL. The former Texas standout has been the heart and soul of Kansas City’s offense all year. After an abysmal 2012 season where they went 2-14, Charles has been a huge part of the team’s turnaround to an 11-3 record so far in the 2013 campaign. Andy Reid deserves credit for this dramatic turnaround as well.

The Chiefs couldn’t have picked a better coach to utilize the star running back’s talents. His 98 targets out of the backfield are by far the most of his career. His previous high was 66. The workload he has taken on this year should speak volumes of how new head coach Andy Reid views him as a player.

With 2 games left in the season, Jamaal Charles has catapulted himself right into the thick of the MVP race with Broncos’ QB Peyton Manning. Dominating seemingly every time he touches the ball, the stud back is more than worthy of being the NFL’s MVP this year. Yes, Manning is on the verge of shattering the passing touchdown record, but what Charles has meant to Kansas City this year is almost unmatched by any player in the NFL.

Having picked up 98 first downs this year, the Chiefs’ offense lives and dies by Charles. Being the team’s leading rusher and receiver, you could argue the team wouldn’t even be in the playoffs without him.

All in all, taking the MVP from Peyton Manning this year is going to be one tough task, but the only other player as deserving of the award resides in Kansas City. How Jamaal Charles plays these next two games will be a direct determinant of just how close this MVP race is at season’s end.

 

Christian Roberts of Sportz Overtime, for War Room Sports

 

Philadelphia Eagles 2013 regular season schedule features Monday Night Opener against the Redskins, return of Andy Reid

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

by Brandyn Campbell

 

 

 

 

The Philadelphia Eagles 2013 schedule.
(Image via the Eagles’ Facebook page)

 

We’re in the heart of the long, cold, lonely offseason but there are signs that the light that is professional football will one day return.  That light on Thursday night came in the form of the release of the Philadelphia Eagles’ 2013 schedule.

The first helping of regular season Eagles football will come on September 9 via a Monday Night matchup against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field.  That will be one of only two primetime games for the Birds, which is a marked decrease from recent seasons.

The Eagles will have an intense opening to their schedule, featuring three games in the first ten days.  That stretch will be highlighted by a huge game: Andy Reid’s return to the Linc with the Kansas City Chiefs on September 19.  How “Big Red” is greeted upon his big return to his former home will surely be the major storyline of that game.

Other highlights include a matchup with the Denver Broncos in the Mile High City on September 29 and versus Aaron Rodgers at the Green Bay Packers on November 10.

The team has a late Week 12 bye, the latest since 2000 when Philadelphia’s bye week feel on Week 16.

NFC East action continues after the opener on October 10 against the Cowboys at the Linc, with the regular season ending at Dallas on December 29.

Ready to make your predictions?  I’ve seen some out there.  But for now, here’s the full schedule for your perusal:

How much longer until September 9?  Oh wait.  Nevermind.

Want more Philly Sports Muse? You can find me on Twitter at @sports_muse and on Facebook.

 

Brandyn Campbell of Philly Sports Muse, for War Room Sports

Philadelphia Eagles Interview Brian Kelly and Lovie Smith; Any Closer to Naming a Head Coach?

Monday, January 14th, 2013

by Brandyn Campbell

 

 

 

 

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly
(Image via unhd.com)

The Philadelphia Eagles have ended their second week of the search for a new head coach, and the landscape seems more muddled now than ever before.

This past week’s surprising revelation is the news that the Birds interviewed Notre Coach Brian Kelly.  Is anyone else surprised at how much interest Philadelphia has demonstrated in college coaches with no previous NFL experience?  Particularly those having the last name Kelly?

Could the Notre Dame coach have been yet another Kelly using interest from the NFL as leverage to get something more from his current institution?  The coach is currenty out of the country but is scheduled to speak to the Eagles once again after he returns.  In the meantime, we will all wonder about the nature of that next meeting.

In other news, the Eagles interviewed former Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith on Thursday at the NovaCare.  Surprisingly little is known about that meeting, even its duration, with the team only finally confirming that yes, they did indeed speak with Smith.

Smith is at the other end of the spectrum of possibilities for the Eagles.  A candidate like Kelly represents someone untested and unscathed by the NFL.  Fresh energy and perspective.  Smith is on the other end of the scale – a proven NFL coach with a winning record.  Not an easy accomplishment, but with his experience is he the breath of fresh air that Lurie seems to be seeking?

Other coaches currently on the Eagles’ radar are Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, and Bengals OC Jay Gruden will interview with the Birds next week.  As Gruden has already said he has no interest in leaving Cincinnati and is speaking with teams simply to get them off his back, don’t have any high expectations to come out of that meeting.

What twists and turns will this week hold in the continuing search for the next Philadelphia Eagles head coach?  Could there maybe, possibly be another coach named within that period of time?

Yeah, I don’t think so either.  We’ll just look on and continue to wonder as, by comparison, Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs start to build their coaching staff.

Want more Philly Sports Muse? You can find me on Twitter at @sports_muse and on Facebook.

 

Brandyn Campbell of Philly Sports Muse, for War Room Sports