THUNDERING BLURB » AFC West ANDREW GARDA'S ENDLESS TAKES ON NFL AND COLLEGE FOOTBALL Fri, 22 Oct 2010 12:30:31 +0000 en hourly 1 2010 Draft Blurb Appearences Mon, 26 Apr 2010 20:15:04 +0000 admin So I did a bunch of radio work this past weekend and didn’t have time to post it (and at times, didn’t have time to get a link to it) until now.

When you get a chance, check out the following bits of audio:

Friday Night I appeared on Brian Carriveau’s Cheesehead Nation show on We talked about the first few rounds of Packer picks, which I actually like quite a bit. (about 10 minutes at the front  but the ep goes much longer)

I’m at the top but stick around for the whole show as they break down some of the picks more in depth later on. It’s good stuff, and Railbird Central is a great place to go for Packer stuff.

Saturday I joined my good friend Matt Levine of The Final Score of WSTC/WNLK in Connecticut to talk some Jets and Giants as well as some general NFL Draft stuff as well. I uploaded it here so you can hear what I had to say from Radio City. (about 20 minutes long)

On Sunday I got to hoof it to the home of Sirius Satellite Radio and join Cecil Lammey of 104.3 The Fan in Denver and as well as Russ Lande, analyst for’s NFL Draft Warroom and head of GMJr for three hours of 2010 NFL Draft recap.

As Cecil’s show (every Sunday on the Fan) is on in Denver, we covered a lot of Broncos (and Tim Tebow) but also hit on the Draft in general and the AFC West as a whole.

You can also get a behind the scenes look at the three of us on this episode of Blurb TV. In fact you can get a look at ALL of my experience at the 2010 NFL Draft here at Thundering Blurb or over at my channel on Viddler as well.

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The Thundering Blurb Show – 4/14 Thu, 15 Apr 2010 12:48:46 +0000 admin REMINDER – NEXT WEEK’S SHOW IS ON MONDAY AT 10PM EST ON THE FANTASY SPORTS CHANNEL.

Also I will be at the NFL Draft all three days, live at Radio City Music Hall. You can follow me live blogging right here at the Blurb site, catch my instant thoughts on Twitter by following @thunderingblurb or by tuning in to 104.3 the Fan’s stream (they’re Denver so get ready for Broncos Talk).



Cupcakes from Crumbs were my birthday cake. My wife ROCKS.

Turns out not only was it my Birthdaystravoganzapalooza but the Denver Broncos gave us some news to talk about on last night’s show.

In order to make sure we had the 411 on the ins and outs of the trade and it’s impact on the Broncos, we welcome good friend of the show and twitter machine Frank Schwab of the Colorado Springs Gazette.

Frank and I chat about Marshall and his affect on the Broncos, and then talk about some of the other points of attack the team may have going into next Thursday. We also chat about the direction of the team, the different ways the offense could be heading and the fact that Denver might want to get a Center in at some point—since they don’t have one at all on the roster.

We cover all that and more Broncos talk before segueing into more general NFL talk, including the fact that we both have reservations about shifting the Draft so suddenly to Thursday and a three day format and why.

You can find Frank on the Twitters by following @fs3142 or head over to here and read his Gazette stuff.

After we bid Frank adieu (classy huh?) and take a brief break, I welcome in Shane Hallam. Shane does work everywhere including some nice videos on the Draft here and a podcast on BlogTalkRadio as well as contributing to Scott Wright’s site over at

Shane and I touch on a bunch of different Draft-related topics including running backs and wide receivers. Shane—as a Steelers fan—also helps me break down the Santonio Holmes to the Jets trade.

Along with all the above spots to catch Shane’s work, you can follow him on Twitter, @TheP1414.

Altogether good stuff. There might be better ways to spend your birthday but this was a pretty good one.

I capped the evening off (post-show) with a 90 minute chat on Jared Faree’s What’s Your Fantasy show talking movies. Check that out here for some movie madness as we decide what flicks Jared has to see of the vast list of stuff he hasn’t.

As always, thanks for listening and following.

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The Thundering Blurb Football Show – 2/24 Thu, 25 Feb 2010 15:34:50 +0000 admin Click for the  2/24 Blurb here.

Had Scott Wright of on last night – as expected, he crushed it.

Before Scott came on at the halfway point, I hit a few more talking points.

First, I relate my encounter with yet another Tebow fan who just can’t get their head around his hero’s shortcomings.

In an article I wrote on Monday about Tebow’s attempt to alter the mechanics of his throwing motion—one in which I even went so far as to praise the attempt and while not sure it will work, once again find myself not wanting to bet against him.

Which I guess means it’s time for an irrational post from a homer, right? Some dude decided he should call me out by asking ‘Andrew, whom are you Qb coach for?’

First, bonus points for using ‘whom’ correctly. It’s a lost art. But really? THAT’S what you’re coming at me with?

This is really the state of the internet and I forget it at times. If you don’t agree with someone, don’t debate them with logic – attact their credibility with straw man arguments or character attacks.

Forwhat it’s worth, I watch a lot of game film. I carefully break down what I see, form an opinion and then challenge that opinion by reading as many others as I can.

And I QB coach my kid. If that’s not enough for you, you’re reading the wrong article or listening to the wrong show.

I segue to some hockey talk (USA!USA!USA!) and NBC, then talk about the BleacherReport Featured Columnists Mock Draft, where I was up for San Francisco’s pick at 13.

I get the chatroom into a little debate about which way to go and we don’t settle on one person, though I am moved towards the direction I eventually went in.

After the break (at about 30 minutes if you want to fast forward) Scott comes on and we range all over the place. We talk about his site and how he approaches the analysis, touch on various parts of the Combine process, hit the running backs, quarterbacks (including Tebow and his mechanics) and some sleepers to watch this week.

Scott crushes it and brings a ton of great info.

I wrap it up with a few thoughts on Tebow (not his acolytes or detractors) and what the future may hold for him.

Mind you, I’m no QB coach, so take that for what it’s worth. :-)

Thanks for reading, listening and supporting.

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San Francisco 49ers: Where In The World Was Glen Coffee? Sat, 19 Sep 2009 16:53:32 +0000 admin Gore had a rough day in the trenches - where was his relief, Glen Coffee?

Gore had a rough day in the trenches - where was his relief, Glen Coffee?

Count me amongst the many fans, analysts and Fantasy Football people who thought 49ers rookie running back Glen Coffee would spell veteran Frank Gore often when they met the Arizona Cardinals last Sunday.

While you’re at it, count me amongst the folks who were definitely shocked Coffee got a grand total of ONE carry.

With multiple analysts spending the week leading up to the Arizona game asking not ‘if’ but ‘how many’ carries Gore would lose to Coffee, it makes you wonder what was going on.

It’s not as if Gore was a monster moving the chains. 22 carries for just 30 yards doesn’t leave you with much more than a cringe when you look at the statline. The two touchdowns were very good but in terms of moving the ball, Gore just couldn’t.

It certainly wasn’t Gore’s fault. The offensive line played badly and I counted easily half a dozen or more times where he was met – and hit by – Cardinal defensive players in the backfield.

In fact his touchdown on the ground highlight what he can do when he gets some blocks, in this case a nice hit by David Baas.

Yet overall, Gore spent most of his effort trying to get inches not yards. As that’s the case, wouldn’t you expect a little more rest time by utilizing Coffee?

Here are a few things to consider in respect to that question.

1) Rookies struggle with blocking: Quarterback Shaun Hill felt pressure early and often from the Arizona defensive linemen and linebackers. He was at times rushed, he was sacked four times and overall didn’t find as much protection as he needed.

Rookie running backs often struggle with blocking. Well ROOKIES struggle with blocking but for a wide receiver it isn’t as critical.

While Coffee had a very nice preseason carrying the ball, he’s still improving his blocking. Gore has more experiance with it and is better.

If your quarterback is getting hammered, you’re going to keep your more reliable players in to try and stem the tide. That’s Gore.

He’s also a good pass catcher and having Gore in there means you are telegraphing your plays. With Gore in the backfield, he could be a threat to run the ball, or he can slip out to the falt for a nice catch.

It payed off wonderfully in the fourth quarter when Gore did exactly that for a nifty three yard touchdown which ended up being the difference in the game.

It’s a nice added dimension and on a third down, having a player who can block and catch is almost a neccesity for a team.

Can Coffee catch? Sure. But Gore can catch, block and run – so why take him out when you know he’s someone you can count on for all three.

With fewer snaps, Coffee was just involved less overall. It doesn’t explain just one carry, but it was no doubt a factor.

2) Gore is the engine in this offense: When it comes down to it, Frank Gore is the thing that makes this offense effective. We already know Offensive Coordinator Jimmy Raye wants to run a ratio of about 60% run-to-pass plays.

If you plan on doing that, you go with your best back. That’s Gore, no matter how good Coffee looked in the preseason.

If your offense is struggling, you keep hammering with your main guy looking for some momentum. If something is going to spark the offense, it’s going to be that guy.

Despite poor offensive line play, Gore looked good running. He kept his legs moving and fought for every millimeter of ground he could get. When he broke free for that touchdown run, he still had to run an Arizona player over.

You want Gore in there because you know he CAN run that player over.

3) It’s early: Frank Gore is healthy and will never feel better this season than he did in week one. As the season goes on he – like every other player – will start to feel the accumulated effects of many weeks of having his body battered.

In fact, the fear that Gore will wear down towards the end of the season is what drove many to predict Coffee would carry the ball early and often.

It is very common, though, for rookies to hit what is termed the ‘rookie wall’. Particularly running backs who get hit every time they touch the ball, often even on the runs where they don’t get tackled.

For thos unfamiliar with the term the ‘rookie wall’ is usually a point late in the season where a young player just hits a point of exhaustion he cannot overcome.

The NFL season is longer than most college seasons and is much. much harder on the body.

Sure, we’re worried about Gore wearing down. The team may be worried about Coffee wearing down as well.

If Gore can carry the lion’s share of the early load, there is a better chance Coffee can shoulder a bigger burden near the end of the season when every game could make a difference in a birth for the playoffs.

If the team does make the playoffs, Coffee may still have something in the tank to be a factor in those games.

Meanwhile if Gore carries the ball a little less in December, he will be mroe rested for the playoffs.

This may seem like thinking a little further ahead than necessary, but be sure Coach Mike Singletary will be thinking that far ahead on some level.

Keep Coffee fresh early, gradually give him more carries as we get deeper into the season, rest Gore more often towards the end and perhaps have two running backs who are not exhausted for the playoffs.

I havenj’t even touched on the idea that Coffee may still need some time to adjust to the speed of the NFL. Preseason doesn’t fully prepare a guy for the difference between college and the NFL.

So Coffee may get eased in, in part because they don’t want to overload him.

None of the three reasons I stated fully explain the paltry three carries for a rookie we all expected to burst out of the gate.

However I feel they all factor into that low total to some extent.

I believe we will see more of Coffee this Sunday in the game with the Seattle Seahawks.

However I also believe we will still see a lot more Gore than we originally expected to when we finished the preseason.

And I think in the end, that will be a good thing for the 49ers and their fans.


This story was also posted at

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Quarterback Blurb Breakdown: Philip Rivers Wed, 22 Jul 2009 01:48:06 +0000 admin
Can Philip Rivers repeat a better than expected 2008?

Can Philip Rivers repeat a better than expected 2008?

Not everybody likes Philip Rivers. There may be an entire industry built around hating him.

I have never quite understood it – he’s not even the most obnoxious player at his position in his team’s history (Ryan Leaf anyone)?
He’s a trash talker and I love a good fiery trash talker (see last fall’s constant Rudy Carpenter analysis), so maybe I’m immune to his tomfoolery.
All I know is, last season he talked – and backed it up.
If you drafted Rivers as part of a quarterback by committee or your back-up, there’s a fair chance you started him a ton more than you thought you would. Rivers led the league in passer rating and touchdown passes in 2008 and was in the top five quarterbacks of many fantasy leagues.
It’s worth noting he did it with a shaky offensive line, no blocking fullback to count on and a perpetually injured LaDainian Tomlinson. Of course, being down late in many games because the defensive was lackluster didn’t hurt his numbers.
The offensive line should be much improved this year, Jacob Hester should have a better grasp on blocking, LaDainian Tomlinson and Antonio Gates will be healthy. There is a lot to like about Rivers’ team this year.
There are a few things to worry about though. First, the defense looks to be much better this season. Shawne Merriman is back and the overall defense looks stronger. That’s supposed to be good, right?
But in so far as Rivers’ value, no it may not be.
Part of what made Rivers such a surprise quarterback stud was the incredible collapse of his defense, forcing him to throw from behind in many games.
If a quarterback has to come from behind, there is a strong chance you will see their numbers inflated. Rivers had to throw a ton from behind last year. By all accounts, that is not the case this coming season.
So his opportunity to throw during a game may actually come down a bit.
Still, this is a player who has a ton of upside and while he may not throw as much as he did last year, he may be more effective and score more. With a better defense, field position will be better and while that may limit his 98 yard drives, he’s more likely to finish a shorter drive with a score than a longer one, since he doesn’t have a classic ‘big play/vertical threat’.
I’m a big Vincent Jackson fan and think we’ve really just scratched the surface of his talent the last season or so, but I don’t expect him to be a marque wide receiver in the Wayne/Jennings/Johnson sense. Chris Chambers keeps hanging around and people keep talking him up but he’s no great shakes overall. Decent but again, not anything to hang your hat on.
Yet Rivers is able to utilize them to tremendous affect and as he gets a healthy Gates back, I think it only helps him more. Looking at his division, it’s promising as well.

To me, while his attitude rubs some the wrong way I look past it to see a player who is definitely a top ten fantasy quarterback and a strong possibility to sniff the top five if things fall right.

Let others worry about his personality – grab him as part of your QBBC and know you have someone who has the upside to finish as one of the best in 2009.

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