Afterword: Shanahan and RG3

by @steven_lebron

Reading a lot about the reaction to Mike Shanahan and the Redskins coaching and medical staff’s decision to leave RG3 in the game despite the obvious risks of further injury (which in this case, happened). 

Interesting to note that in this  Shanahan profile by Stefan Fatsis, Shanahan himself suffered his own career-ending injury while playing quarterback at Eastern Illinois. From the article:

"Shanahan grew up in suburban Chicago in the 1960s, the son of an electrician and a housewife. He nearly died when he was speared by a linebacker while playing quarterback at Eastern Illinois, the only college that offered him a football scholarship. A priest was summoned to read last rites. Shanahan lost a kidney, recovered, petitioned unsuccessfully to rejoin the football team and began his coaching career upon graduation."

Which both baffles me as to why he wouldn’t take more precaution with his own quarterback and makes me wonder if his own experience desensitized him to injuries. Or, quite simply, he was a coach who thought leaving his quarterback in gave him the best shot at winning a playoff game?

Afterword: Shanahan and RG3

by @steven_lebron

Reading a lot about the reaction to Mike Shanahan and the Redskins coaching and medical staff’s decision to leave RG3 in the game despite the obvious risks of further injury (which in this case, happened).

Interesting to note that in this Shanahan profile by Stefan Fatsis, Shanahan himself suffered his own career-ending injury while playing quarterback at Eastern Illinois. From the article:

"Shanahan grew up in suburban Chicago in the 1960s, the son of an electrician and a housewife. He nearly died when he was speared by a linebacker while playing quarterback at Eastern Illinois, the only college that offered him a football scholarship. A priest was summoned to read last rites. Shanahan lost a kidney, recovered, petitioned unsuccessfully to rejoin the football team and began his coaching career upon graduation."

Which both baffles me as to why he wouldn’t take more precaution with his own quarterback and makes me wonder if his own experience desensitized him to injuries. Or, quite simply, he was a coach who thought leaving his quarterback in gave him the best shot at winning a playoff game?

Seahawks at Redskins: Fresh Faces

by @steven_lebron

Best game on the board this week, right? I suppose by the time we get to this one on Sunday afternoon, we’ll know if they have to live up to the crazy expectations of the match-ups preceding them.

In a first round where both Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III are playing, who knew that the most important rookies might just turn out to be Russell Wilson and Alfred Morris.

And does Matt Flynn text Alex Smith, or is it the other way around. Either way, those exchanges must be a downer.

For Washington, they punched a ticket to the post-season with a victory over the Cowboys last week. Or to put it more aptly, Morris did the punching with over 200 yards and three touchdowns. Griffin hasn’t looked his usual dynamic self since coming back from injury, and it does take a bit away from their offense, but if his rookie mate in the back field can put up the same performance against a stout Seattle defense, it may not matter.

As for the Seahawks. They come into the playoffs with a lot of acclaim and buzz. That tends to happen when you start beating teams by scores of 58-0 (granted, it was Arizona), 50-17 (in Toronto against Buffalo, not exactly a frightening proposition) and 42-13 (at home against San Francisco, who were coming off a short week and a tough battle against New England; actually, never mind, this one was impressive, not going to sell them short).

I will say this: if you told me the Seahawks had a bye and would need to win two playoff games at home to make the Super Bowl, I’m not sure if I’d pick anyone else in the NFC. But on the road? Consider me still a skeptic.

This team’s been a wonderful story. Frankly, both teams have been. It’s always nice to see fresh faces in the tournament. One stays. One goes.

The more complete team, and the better defense should make the difference. I just hope this one lives up to the billing.

27-24 Seahawks.

I just picked every favorite this week.

What does everybody else think?

Happy Endings
I spent all week convincing a friend that the Cowboys were the right bet for tonight’s game against the Redskins, for no reason other than the fact that sports rarely provides the happy endings that we want.
Excuse the pessimism, but especially in a year where the negative side of things reared its ugly head in sports, I was expecting the final week of football of 2012 to deliver much of the same. It feels alright being wrong too.
In Indianapolis, the #Chuckstrong story of coach Pagano and the upstart Colts got one more chapter to their brilliant season, upending the previously top seeded Texans at home, and gave us the victory dance of the year. No matter if this team is confronted with a new reality when the playoffs start next week, the entire turnaround coupled with Pagano’s return has more than made up for the forgettable season in 2011. Oh, and by the way, Andrew Luck is your quarterback for the next decade and some. Not too bad at all.
In Minnesota, the Vikings and Packers went 12 rounds, before Adrian Peterson decided to finish things off at the end. He came just shy of breaking the all-time rushing yards record, but after the performance that he just put on, are we suppose to doubt that he will challenge for it again next season? We need more nicknames for All Day. I suggest New God Flow, because he’s the God of everything else.
And tonight, in Washington, the Skins capped off Robert Griffin III’s rookie season with a win over the Cowboys for the divisional title, and a home playoff game next week. A season that started with a road win in New Orleans, stalled with a 3-6 record, ultimately ended with a seven game winning streak, and hope that things are changing for the franchise. For now. For later.
So if you’re in Detroit, Cleveland, Jacksonville, New York (both, but more so the Jets), Buffalo, or any other city where there doesn’t seem be much hope on the other end. Just remember today. No one could’ve foretold the stories above when the season started.
Sometimes sports is really the most fun when we get reminded of how little we know, then when it reaffirms what we think we know.
Next time, I might be a little less skeptical, and just let the stories play out to their happy endings.
@steven_lebron

Happy Endings

I spent all week convincing a friend that the Cowboys were the right bet for tonight’s game against the Redskins, for no reason other than the fact that sports rarely provides the happy endings that we want.

Excuse the pessimism, but especially in a year where the negative side of things reared its ugly head in sports, I was expecting the final week of football of 2012 to deliver much of the same. It feels alright being wrong too.

In Indianapolis, the #Chuckstrong story of coach Pagano and the upstart Colts got one more chapter to their brilliant season, upending the previously top seeded Texans at home, and gave us the victory dance of the year. No matter if this team is confronted with a new reality when the playoffs start next week, the entire turnaround coupled with Pagano’s return has more than made up for the forgettable season in 2011. Oh, and by the way, Andrew Luck is your quarterback for the next decade and some. Not too bad at all.

In Minnesota, the Vikings and Packers went 12 rounds, before Adrian Peterson decided to finish things off at the end. He came just shy of breaking the all-time rushing yards record, but after the performance that he just put on, are we suppose to doubt that he will challenge for it again next season? We need more nicknames for All Day. I suggest New God Flow, because he’s the God of everything else.

And tonight, in Washington, the Skins capped off Robert Griffin III’s rookie season with a win over the Cowboys for the divisional title, and a home playoff game next week. A season that started with a road win in New Orleans, stalled with a 3-6 record, ultimately ended with a seven game winning streak, and hope that things are changing for the franchise. For now. For later.

So if you’re in Detroit, Cleveland, Jacksonville, New York (both, but more so the Jets), Buffalo, or any other city where there doesn’t seem be much hope on the other end. Just remember today. No one could’ve foretold the stories above when the season started.

Sometimes sports is really the most fun when we get reminded of how little we know, then when it reaffirms what we think we know.

Next time, I might be a little less skeptical, and just let the stories play out to their happy endings.

@steven_lebron

HTRGIII
Hail to the Redskins!Hail Victory! Braves on the Warpath! HAIL TO RG 3! 

HTRGIII

Hail to the Redskins!
Hail Victory! 
Braves on the Warpath! 
HAIL TO RG 3! 

  • Dez Bryant
  • Andrew Luck
  • Calvin Johnson
  • Cam Newton
  • Robert Griffin III
  • Mark Sanchez
  • Darrelle Revis
  • Julio Jones
  • Victor Cruz
When last we left Cortland Finnegan in Tennessee, he was mixing it up with Andre Johnson. Now that he’s in St. Louis, he still hasn’t learned his lesson and it’s paying dividends.
Finnegan not only snagged the honors of being responsible for RGIII's first NFL interception, but he riled Redskins receiver, Josh Morgan, up so much that he basically cost Washington the game, thus being responsible for RGIII’s first NFL loss as well.

With the Redskins trailing 31-28, Morgan caught a third-down pass and was short of the first down at the Rams’ 29-yard line, but the 7 yards Morgan picked up should have helped Billy Cundiff’s chance at a game-tying field goal. Then Morgan had a brain lock for the ages. 
Cortland Finnegan, Rams cornerback and professional agitator, gave Morgan a little shove at the end of the play. Morgan inexplicably threw the ball at Finnegan in retaliation. There are certain things an official can let slide in the heat of the moment, especially when he knows a penalty will decide the game, but there’s no way an official is going to ignore a player chucking a ball at an opponent after the play. 
The flag was worth 15 yards and suddenly the Redskins faced fourth-and-16. Redskins coach Mike Shanahan - whose doghouse door opened up the moment Morgan wound up and fired at Finnegan - decided to let Cundiff try a 62-yard field goal rather than go for it with 1:18 left. It was well short and wide right, and the Rams killed the clock with a couple plays out of victory formation.

- via Yahoo!
(Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

When last we left Cortland Finnegan in Tennessee, he was mixing it up with Andre Johnson. Now that he’s in St. Louis, he still hasn’t learned his lesson and it’s paying dividends.

Finnegan not only snagged the honors of being responsible for RGIII's first NFL interception, but he riled Redskins receiver, Josh Morgan, up so much that he basically cost Washington the game, thus being responsible for RGIII’s first NFL loss as well.

With the Redskins trailing 31-28, Morgan caught a third-down pass and was short of the first down at the Rams’ 29-yard line, but the 7 yards Morgan picked up should have helped Billy Cundiff’s chance at a game-tying field goal. Then Morgan had a brain lock for the ages.

Cortland Finnegan, Rams cornerback and professional agitator, gave Morgan a little shove at the end of the play. Morgan inexplicably threw the ball at Finnegan in retaliation. There are certain things an official can let slide in the heat of the moment, especially when he knows a penalty will decide the game, but there’s no way an official is going to ignore a player chucking a ball at an opponent after the play.

The flag was worth 15 yards and suddenly the Redskins faced fourth-and-16. Redskins coach Mike Shanahan - whose doghouse door opened up the moment Morgan wound up and fired at Finnegan - decided to let Cundiff try a 62-yard field goal rather than go for it with 1:18 left. It was well short and wide right, and the Rams killed the clock with a couple plays out of victory formation.

- via Yahoo!

(Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Your Sports Illustrated covers for Week 1 of the 2012-13 NFL Season.

Which would you prefer?

Bob Griffin, doing professional things in New Orleans. We’re barely into the second quarter and the Skins lead the Saints 17-7.
Bob’s stat line,  10 of 11 for 155 yards, 2 TDs and 0 INTs. What a professional debut this is shaping up to be.

Bob Griffin, doing professional things in New Orleans. We’re barely into the second quarter and the Skins lead the Saints 17-7.

Bob’s stat line, 10 of 11 for 155 yards, 2 TDs and 0 INTs. What a professional debut this is shaping up to be.

Hail to the Redskins.

/via Grantland

And with the 2nd pick in the 2012 NFL Draft the Washington Redskins select ROBERT GRIFFIN III.
Another non-shocker, RG3 going to Washington. They are already throwing a parade for him.  Washington sees what Cam Newton did for the Panthers last year and that is the exact reason why they gave up so much to get him. And like Cam, RG3 can beat you with his arm or his legs. For the sake of DC, let’s hope RG3 is everything he’s cracked up to be. The crowd has been chanting “RG3” since Roger Goodell said Andrew Luck’s name.  They could use some quarterback play in the capital.

And with the 2nd pick in the 2012 NFL Draft the Washington Redskins select ROBERT GRIFFIN III.

Another non-shocker, RG3 going to Washington. They are already throwing a parade for him.  Washington sees what Cam Newton did for the Panthers last year and that is the exact reason why they gave up so much to get him. And like Cam, RG3 can beat you with his arm or his legs. For the sake of DC, let’s hope RG3 is everything he’s cracked up to be. The crowd has been chanting “RG3” since Roger Goodell said Andrew Luck’s name.  They could use some quarterback play in the capital.


Optimism Nothing is impossible.

/from @abrad45 via @espn_nfceast

Optimism
Nothing is impossible.

/from @abrad45 via @espn_nfceast

"The Washington Redskins are prepared to part with two first-round draft picks, plus other selections in the early and middle rounds, to secure the St. Louis Rams’ No. 2 pick in April’s draft and land Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, according to people with knowledge of the situation.
But Washington faces competition from the Cleveland Browns, who own two first-round picks —the fourth and 22nd overall — in this year’s draft, and Miami, which picks eighth this year.”
- Washington Post

"The Washington Redskins are prepared to part with two first-round draft picks, plus other selections in the early and middle rounds, to secure the St. Louis Rams’ No. 2 pick in April’s draft and land Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, according to people with knowledge of the situation.

But Washington faces competition from the Cleveland Browns, who own two first-round picks —the fourth and 22nd overall — in this year’s draft, and Miami, which picks eighth this year.

- Washington Post