Week 5 NFL Roll up and Prime Time Thoughts

Jon Gruden engaging in racist, sexist, and misogynistic conversations via email over a seven-year period is reprehensible. He has some explaining to do. A simple apology as he resigns isn’t enough. This is a man who has spent 26 years in the locker rooms of nine different teams. This is a man who was entrusted with coaching college students. This is a man who was charged with leading position groups. This is a man who was commissioned to lead two different NFL franchises. Leadership requires you to step outside of yourself and do what is best for the organization, leaving your personal feelings aside. When leaders do that, they learn something. I have seen it during my time in the Army. More importantly, leadership requires compassion, empathy, and a genuine love of people. Seven years’ worth of derogatory remarks towards race and sex is seven years of ignorance. Jon Gruden spent seven years blindly, and hatefully harboring destructive viewpoints, infecting everything he does. He learned nothing from his ethnically diverse locker rooms. Worse, he paid little attention to how society progressed. Maybe I am giving him too much credit. It is possible that he was aware of the progress society is striving for and he simply ignored it.

I have always enjoyed what Jon Gruden brings to football. I read his book. I studied his take on the west coast offense. I watched every quarterback coaching session he did on ESPN. He interested me greatly because of the time he spent with former 49ers offense coordinator Mike Holmgren. Now, I cannot think of his legacy and his contributions without considering seven years of pervasive destructive behavior that our society is working on stamping out. What is worse is these attitudes infect his coaching style. These attitudes bleed into his everyday work. These attitudes inform how he treats men of color, women and homosexuals. One must wonder how he was able to be an effective leader in the first place. It is a sad day for football. Jon Gruden is not the first nor the last individual to engage in this behavior. Hopefully we will continue to move forward in a positive direction.

Now for some genuine football talk!

What is wrong with the Chiefs? That is the question on everyone’s lips. High level defenses have figured out Patrick Mahomes. First, the Chiefs lack an effective running game. Second, their passing game is pedestrian at best. Tyreek Hill has shown that he can be an effective route runner, however they are not using him that way. Defenses are putting two safeties over the top, zoning up the middle and slowing down this passing attack. The Chiefs can no longer throw the long ball at will. The other key to defeating the Chiefs is having an effective front four on the defensive line. The Buffalo Bills have a great rotation of young defensive linemen that are just coming into their own. They showed up and showed out on Sunday Night. The last key to defeating the key is play solid effective offense. The Chief’s defense is woeful. Chris Jones was out, and they missed him. Even he can’t play all the defensive snaps. The scheme needs to change. The defensive roster needs to turn over. They just don’t have the scheme and talent to play consistently tough defense. The season is not over for the Chiefs. They have somethings to work on. They have some changes to make. If anyone can coach up those changes, Andy Reid can.

Monday Night Football did not disappoint! The Ravens and Colts put on a show. They both had their opportunities to avoid a tie. The Colts missed an extra point and a field goal. Lamar Jackson fumbled away a would-be touchdown run. Carson Wentz played an excellent game throwing for over 400 yards and two touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough. In the end, Lamar Jackson willed his team to win on the strength of his arm. He threw strikes all over the field and Mark Andrew’s was his favorite target. He brought the Ravens back from a two-score deficit to tie and then led them to victory in overtime. The Colts are 1-4 but they are not really a 1-4 team. They are stacked with talent, and they are just now learning how to put it all together. They can still put a winning season together.

Now for the rest of the NFL Rollup.

1. Dolphin’s defense disappears. It’s a good thing Xavien Howard was paid because Antonio Brown was earning Howard’s money on Sunday. Tom Brady gets some revenge for all those loses he suffered against the Dolphins during his days as a Patriot.

2. Cardinals remain undefeated. The rest of the league will catchup. Still, the Cardinals are a tough out. Their defense is the real deal. JJ Watt finally has the running mate he always wanted in Chandler Jones. The 49ers rolled out their rookie quarterback Trey Lance and he played as well as you could in his situation, in a hostile environment against the only undefeated team in the NFL.

3. Detroit loses a heartbreaker. Coach Dan Cambell is losing games but not his locker room. His passion and love for his team bleeds thru all his pours. If I played for Coach Dan, I would run thru a wall to. They have the right culture. They just need a bit more talent.

4. Rams bounce back and push the Seahawks to 2-3. Russell Wilson will be out for a few weeks. With Wilson out, what are the Seahawks chances to make the playoffs?

5. Kyle Pitts scores his first NFL touchdown in London as he led the Falcons in receptions and yardage. Zach Wilson had a pedestrian game against a mediocre defense. Falcons move out of the one-win basement with victory in London.

6. Eagles stun the Panthers. The Sam Darnold honeymoon is over. Darnold threw three picks. Admittedly the Eagles defense is tough, but three picks good…that is a stretch.

7. Green Bay plays a complete game against a tough Bengals squad. Their defense forced multiple turnovers. Rodgers threw for over 300 and Jones ran for over 100. The Packers are finding their stride. Hopefully Burrows throat will be fine.

8. New England gets the win even though Davis Mills out plays Mac Jones. Mills threw for 312 yards and 3 touchdowns and no interceptions.

9. Chargers get the win as Herbert out plays Baker Mayfield in a high scoring matchup.

10. Steelers win at home. Broncos limp back to Denver….

11. Justin Fields wins his debut start as the Chicago Bears Quarterback. This game was a defensive match up though. Fields was not spectacular, but he did not make critical mistakes to lose the game. This is the second week in a row the Raiders have dropped a game. We shall see how the Raiders overcome Gruden’s resignation.

12. Titans bounce back and thump the Jaguars 37 to 19. Urban Meyer has lost the moral high ground with his team. Will he recover it?

13. Dallas dominates the Giants, knocking Barkley and Jones out of the game.

14. Cardinals Cowboys, Packers, and Rams are the toast the NFC right now.

15. Saints put 33 points on the overrated Washington Football team defense.

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