Saturday, September 15, 2007

Ravens QB of the Future?

Many still believe that Byron Leftwich is a player that would look good in Ravens’ purple. Don’t count me among them – at least not in 2007. Leftwich is regarded as a prototypical pocket passer with a big wind up. Mix that in with an offensive line that hasn’t yet gelled, a lack of mobility and an unfamiliarity with Brian Billick’s offense and it adds up to little productivity.

Extending Kyle Boller was a smart move by the organization because it buys them another year to develop Troy Smith as a back-up. That said there are some within the organization who believe than none of the current quarterbacks is the team’s QB of the future. Don’t be surprised to see the Ravens use a first day pick in the 2008 draft to get their signal caller for years to come.

A team that will be down one first day pick in next year’s draft is the New England Patriots. Described by many as a modern day dynasty, The Patriots will now have to deal with a sullied reputation. Their accomplishments as a team and those of individual players like Tom Brady might be labeled with a Barry Bonds-like asterisk.

Over the years Belichick has earned a reputation for making outstanding halftime adjustments. Now those adjustments seem more like the equivalent of peaking at an opponent’s hand at the poker table. Is he still the genius or just a cheater?

"I was giving them a whole bunch of credit for making halftime adjustments [during Super Bowl XXXIX]. . . . It's troublesome," safety Brian Dawkins said earlier this week. "I don't know how different to say it -- it bothers me."

Some have said that the sanctions levied against Belichick and the Patriots aren’t severe enough. Others have said the punishment far outweighs the crime.

Let’s face it, Belichick has undermined the integrity of the game. What if during the first half of a game the Patriots collected the data (video of defensive signals) and then studied it at halftime? What if they then observed the same defensive signals during the second half of games and relayed the data to Tom Brady?

To take it further, let’s assume Brady is running a no-huddle offense, surveys the field and sees the safeties lining up in a Cover 2 which is confirmed by the stolen signals and then delivered to his radio-equipped helmet. Can a pre-snap read get any better than that? Brady now knows exactly where to deliver the football and calls the appropriate play from the shotgun.

It might not be the reason why Tom Brady went from a sixth round draft pick to a repeat Super Bowl MVP, but it sure does make you wonder now, doesn’t it?


Anonymous said...

As a football fan, you have to be honest with yourself: Video taping, per se, is perfectly legal and EVERY team does it. The rules say where you can’t record from: the field and the coaches areas–and where you can–anyplace with a roof and walls. The truth is you can video tape in the NFL–just not anywhere you like. This is not cheating, which is the shorthand dump partisans promulgate. Bill was pushing the limits, he knew it, and he should be fined. Not villified. If you don’t think video taping the games for signals, formations and anything else–which goes on every game everywhere–than ban videotaping altogether. Don’t make Belichick out to be a cheater; what’s the cheat? His man was in a nondesignated area? That’s all you got? The truth is, Belichick was ratted out by a former employee looking for HIS own advantage and the NFL monkey-pile continues because the Patriots are so damn good and others are so damn envious. Nobody gets this animated over mediocre teams, only great ones.
You know the truth in your heart.

Harryos29 said...

Any thing that the Patriots have achieved so far, and will achieve in the future, will be looked at with a jaundist eye.....IMHO.
Brady is just a member of the Patriots so you cannot hold him responsible for the STUFF that the head coach had done to get an advantage. But, Goodell has acted swiftly and decisively , which is a lot more than his counterpart has ever done in the Other Majore Sport in this Country.
Harry O'
Sykesville 9/15/2007

jailoyal said...

There is no doubt that Bellicheck cheated. And, it looks more likely than not that he has done it for a while. Goodell put teams on notice that this behavior is unacceptable. The Patriots were told exactly where the line is. Then they took their usual position on the dirty side of it. Obviously, teams videotape games. It's equally as obvious as evidenced by the many reactions around the league that what the Patriots were doing did not fall within the scope of par for the course. Bellichick wouldn't have done it if it did not provide an advantage. Why break rules if there is no payoff? And, that advantage could have been the one or two plays per game that put a team over the top. Everything is tainted. If their players were ignorant to it all, I feel sorry for them now that they have seen behind the wizard's curtain.