Musings on the NFL, shakeups, and Week 12

Some random thoughts and musings from around the NFL amidst
a busy Tuesday afternoon with news of a major shakeup in North Florida.


Canned in Jacksonville


Del Rio’s firing was long overdue but perfectly timed. With a change in
ownership underway, it only makes sense the new regime will want to put its own
stamp on a franchise seemingly in eternal transition. Mel Tucker will hold down
the fort until new boss Shahid Khan and his minions can find somebody to
finally give the club some direction. In Del Rio’s nine seasons at the helm,
the Jaguars never won an AFC South title and recorded just one playoff victory
in two appearances.


Home cooking


            Does anyone else think the Ravens and Saints are
eerily similar? Both teams can wow you with one overwhelmingly good unit – the
Ravens with their trademark defense and the Saints with their high-powered

are unbeaten and, frankly, dominant at home, yet have suffered two
headscratching losses on the road that make people wonder just how elite they really
are. The Ravens have inexplicably lost in Jacksonville and Seattle, while the
Saints lost to the Buccaneers and suffered 2011’s biggest upset when they fell
to the then-winless Rams.

8-3, Baltimore and New Orleans are almost certainly playoff-bound, although
only the Ravens have a legitimate shot at getting homefield advantage
throughout the playoffs.

would be good news for a Ravens team that is 25-5 at home under John Harbaugh.
For the Saints, a division title will give them at least one home game, and
they have averaged 39.6 points in five games at the Superdome this season.


Tebow also vindicating McDaniels


            Perhaps lost in the shuffle of Tim Tebow’s inspiring
play for the red-hot Broncos is the fact that the naysayers were simply shocked
when former head coach Josh McDaniels used the team’s 25th overall
pick in the Draft on him.

all, Tebow was a project at best, a celebrated college player with no arm
strength to succeed in the NFL.

Tebow has proven that for all his flaws, he has one major thing going for him:
he’s a winner.

that’s what impressed McDaniels above all, that he could utilize Tebow’s
talents properly and blend those with his winning attitude to restore a winning
culture in Denver.

now the offensive coordinator for the St. Louis Rams, was fired after 12 games
in 2010, lasting less than two seasons in the Mile High City, but his
once-vilified decision is starting to pay dividends for the Broncos, as new
head coach John Fox has indeed found a way to get the most out of Tebow.


History not on his side


always nice to have a starting quarterback gig in the NFL, but Dan Orlovsky
doesn’t exactly have a resume worth boasting about.

Orlovsky starts Sunday in what is expected to be a blowout loss to the New
England Patriots, he will be leading the Colts on a dubious path to infamy just
as he did for the Detroit Lions three years ago.

five more losses, the Colts – and more specifically Orlovsky – will join the
2008 Detroit Lions on the wrong side of history as the league’s only 0-16

Orlovsky on that quest is linebacker Ernie Sims, who was a linebacker on that ’08
Lions squad. Two men who have had a career’s worth of losses in two
historically-bad seasons, perhaps.

this is not to rip on Orlovsky. Today’s NFL features a massive discrepancy
between the league’s elite quarterbacks and even the middle-of-the-pack ones,
and when you are down to backups the pickings are even slimmer.

is not a born loser or even a bad quarterback necessarily, although he won’t be
able to prove anyone wrong starting for the 2008 Lions and 2011 Colts.
Hopefully he will have enough motivation to pick up his game and keep history
from repeating itself. It just won’t happen Sunday in Foxborough.

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