Quoth the Raven

When the Ravens went up 10-3, running the ball and getting short completions by rookie Joe Flacco, it seemed bleak for the Titans. Kerry Collins would have to drive the Titans the entire field to win. So far this year, offensive drives have been relatively short due to the defense setting it up. So what does Collins do?

I must digress. The White Sox defied expectations by surviving in the playoffs longer than the Cubs. That’s probably going to be their playoff legacy. Why must they be in a do or die scenario to perform like this?

I like to watch the highlights on the NFL GameDay Final. I don’t necessarily like the commentary afterward. Rich Eisen is enjoyable in his ESPN SportsCenter-esque pop-culture reference gone wile manner. Steve Mariucci is fine. I can’t listen to Deion Sanders. It hurts my ears. I assume that they’re saving the best for last, as they show the Titans/Ravens highlights at the 1:09 point of the 90-minute show. They have to start with a shot of Vince Young. Of course they do.

Generally even when you’re losing, you have to stick with your strength. The Titans pretty much gave up on their running game in the fourth quarter, yet Collins was able to direct two 75-yard plus drives including the winner with two minutes to go.

But were the Titans saved by a phantom penalty? The key play was a third-down incompletion. The Titans had a false start, usually a play-killer, and the Ravens were called for roughing the passer. The false start should have ended the play. The penalty was iffy if ever. In the first quarter, the Ravens got a boost with a unsportsmanlike conduct player after a Titan retaliated from getting hit by a Raven, so we’ll call it even.

Note to defensive coordinators playing the Ravens: Make Flacco roll out. He makes bad decisions when he does. Three times he threw picks on rollouts (one was called back).

Final comment on the Missouri win: That was Nebraska’s homecoming. I don’t think Missouri’s going to be a homecoming team any time soon.

Smart two-point coaching: When the Redskins took the lead 15-14 against the Eagles, they could have gone for two. Instead, they kicked the extra point. The TD later in the game gave them a critical nine-point lead. When the Bengals scored with 7:30 to go, they trailed by two. Of course they went for two and didn’t get it. When the Cowboys scored, the lead was nine instead of eight. The Bengals didn’t have a chance.

Fantasy Nuggets:

Larry Johnson has averaged 100 yards rushing the past two weeks. Oh yeah, he had two yards this week after last week’s 198-yard performance. It’s not just the Republicans who can spin.

Thanks in part to two inexplicable late fumbles, Peyton Manning finally had an above-average fantasy day.

Ronnie Brown is further proof that an ACL tear is not a career-ender.

I doubt that too many people started DeAngelo Williams this week. The Chiefs sure fell back to earth in a week.

That’s right, Cedric Benson might become fantasy-relevant again.

When I realized that my top two QBs in the AUFL, Favre and Derek “insert expletive here” Anderson had the same bye week, I jumped on Jason Campbell. Campbell might be my starter for the rest of the year.

In the AUFL, I have scored more points each week. This week I started the top two receivers in Andre Johnson and Roddy White. White started slowly but has become an every-week start. Johnson seems to do better with Rosenfels in there but I think Schaub will get over his mysterious illness for next week’s game. With my win in the AUFL, I may have to revert my earlier statement of having two good teams and two crap teams. Patience has paid off, as I’ve made only two roster moves and the players I drafted have performed well. I picked up Ryan Torain and hope that he’s this year’s Ryan Grant.

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