Archive for category Tom Brady

Brady Impact

Well, we finally ran into a situation Pats HC Bill Belichick couldn’t play out for weeks on end – the Pats have placed Tom Brady on the IR, thus ending his season.

Adam Shefter is saying that he tore the MCL as well as the ACL. He has plenty of time to rehab so he’ll be back I think by next season.

But what about this season? What does this mean for the Pats offensive Fantasy players?

Well, it’s a little too soon to make too many judgements BUT we saw some things will Cassel under center.

First off, I am also more worried about the Jacksonville offensive line than the overall Pats O. You can’t replace Brady of course – but replacing three offensive linemen is even harder on the fly.

So, as dissappointing as it is for Brady owners, I think everyone else can breathe a bit.

Moss: Did you notice a difference in Moss from Brady to Cassel? Me neither. This is not to say the drop-off won’t come but of the 6 catches Moss had, half the catches were on passes from Cassel, who targeted him one more time. Now, the overall offense looked a little sluggish and will take a step back. But Moss is the main weapon here and that won’t change.

But will he get open? Will Wes Welker still be able to pull coverage off him? I think so. Welker is a solid possesion receiver and while I expect him to also see a slight dip in his numbers, I thought he wouldn’t quite meet his total from last year anyway. So if your expectations are reasonable in a PPR league, he will still see his share of touches and targets.

Laurence Maroney is what he is – a decent back who never seems to get enough carries to do too much for you. Will he see more of a load now that Brady is down? That is the biggest question for me going into the Jets game this Sunday. I wouldn’t start him now but they will likely run the ball more and that could mean Maroney will get more carries. But you have to account for LaMont Jordan, Sammy Morris and Kevin Faluk (activated today) all of whom will be active and will hamper Maroney’s potential. I would avoid the run game the next week or so – you risk missing a big game from someone, but at least you’ll have a better idea of who that someone might be, rather than play Russian Roulette with your #2RB or flex spot.

Finally we get to the man himself – what about Matt Cassel? Truly awful in preseason, Cassel stepped up and played very well under stress. He wasn’t phenomenal – he won’t turn Tom Brady into Drew Bledsoe but he seemed to manage the game just fine in Brady’s absence. That said, I have no intention of starting him right now. Not until I see if he regresses. I have high hopes the rest of the offense will play up to snuff – but honestly all the above depends on Cassel playing well. Belichick insists they are not trying out any QBs, but you have to expect he will at some point. A Vet presense will only help the team. Still, it says something about Belichick’s confidence level that there were no tryouts today. It will be a week or two – they have a tough game against the Jets (who will be fired up to host the Pats minus Brady) and then host the Dolphins in week 3. And then a perfectly timed bye week in 4. I really think this team has the time to get Cassel as much work as they can and give him every chance to suceed.

What really we will see in the next few weeks is the Patriots character. A team for whom everything just worked last season, will they be able to deal with this hurdle? Losing Brady is a more serious blow than the Camera-Gate garbage last year. They used that to propel themselves to a perfect season.

Is this more grist for the same mill? Or is this the sort of thing that will throw them off their game?

The answer to that question will come the next few weeks – and will also give you the answer to the questions I posed above.

Monday Stampede

Hey folks – great first week of football. Some pretty big injuries we’ll have to watch and wait on to know for sure how bad they are.

We touched on Tom Brady’s injury yesterday and while Belichick was tight lipped (shocker!), reports are surfacing that he told the team to be prepared to play the season with backup Matt Cassel as their starter. That, coupled with reports of Chris Simms and Tim Rattay showing up to workout for the Pats point to the reports of Brady being done for the season as accurate.

You’ll downgrade Moss & co. of course, but how much remains to be seen. Cassel and Moss seemed to get on fine and Moss will be his top option. Wes Welker caught 6 for 51 yards, so that’s not great but not bad. But adjustments to the rest of the offense could change that and we’ll have to see whether the Pats run the ball more or if Cassel looks to different guys more often. Certainly Cassel is no Tom Brady – he’s not a guy you can just replace. There will likely be a drop off somehwhere – it’s just hard to say where.

In other news -

Vince Young
We all know by now that VY tore his MCL. What is interesting is that the Nashville Tennessean is reporting that right before the play when he tore it, he tried to take himself out with what was apparently tightness in his hamstring. He didn’t look for treatment, but wasn’t in the huddle when the team was on the field. Furthermore, the cloumnists seems to think that HC Jeff Fisher forced him back out there when he wasn’t 100%. Fisher waffled on it during his presser. In some ways, it’s almost irrelevent given that Young is gone for at least 2-4 weeks, but it’s an intriguing back story to the injury. It’s certainly a rift worth noting if true.

Marion Barber
Barber had a great performance Sunday with 101 all purpose yards and 2 TDs but was out the 4th quarter with an apparent rib injury. In all likelyhood, Barber could have finished out the game, but with the game a blow out, why risk it? Regardless, X-rays came back negative but ESPN has reported he had some damage to the cartiledge in his rib cage. He says it’s nothing and expects to be ready to go next Monday against the Eagles.

Chris Johnson
Johnson limped off the field yesterday late in the game against the Jaguars but came back later. His performance at that point had been everything we’d hoped for and more (15 carries for 93 yards, 3 receptions for 34 yards and a TD). It appears the rookie cramped up which only highlights what we all know about rookies – they will have moments where they get a bit overwhelmed. Still, Johnson will impact LenDale White’s carries as long as he isn’t cramping up and while it’s early to crown him, could be a good play the rest of the way as a #2RB.

That’s all for now – join me on the Daily News Blurb at noon EST/9am PST and I’ll catch you up to date with all the info from Sunday’s games and the injury aftermath.

Tom Brady – done for year?

Wow, the Phins, Bills and Jets just started licking their lips.

Yahoo Sports is saying that Tom Brady has torn a ligament in his left knee and is done for the year.

As is always the case, HC Bill Belichick said he had no update on the QB’s knee, but according to Michael Silver of Yahoo! Sports says a source close to the quarterback indicated it involved serious damage to the knee. ACL? PCL? Tear? Sprain?

We’ll know as the week progresses – one assumes the Pats can’t use disinformation the way they usually do with an injury of this magnitude. I wouldn’t panic yet, but hopefully you got yourself a solid backup or can race to the waiver wire for one.

Matt Cassel rebounded from an awful preseason and played very well to finish the Chiefs off. We will keep an eye on this news as it comes in.

End of Wednesday News

Hey folks – show went well – you can download it here or on ITunes or listen via the streaming shows on the right side of this page. Also had a great appearance on Reality Football with Marc, Brian and Cakes. Quick but good. Show was fun to listen to as well.

Let’s wrap things up so I can get some beauty sleep….

New England Patriots
So Tom Brady may or may not be hurt – who can ever tell with New England – but he practiced like a man who was feeling no pain. Like I said multiple times today, you weren’t going to bench him. I also am not of the mind that the Pats will run the heck out of the ball whether or not Brady is hurt. If they do, it will be a RBBC, not just Maroney. Regardless, while Brady will suffer a drop off from last year (who wouldn’t) he will play – and probably play well given that KC is a mess.

Miami Dolphins
As I mentioned on the show tonight, Greg Camirillo has moved into the first team offense and according to HC Tony Sparano, he may see a lot of action against the Jets. He spoke pretty glowing of him –

“We really haven’t given him a lot of opportunities to be on the field for long periods of time,” Sparano said. “He’s got really good awareness. He gives the quarterback a pretty sound target. The guy has excellent hands, can run after the catch. He’s sneaky fast. I really like what the guy has done.”

I wouldn’t start him this weekend with Darelle Revis and rookie Dwight Lowery at the corners, but he could be good to stash on your bench and see what pans out.

Houston Texans
First of all, HC Gary Kubiak denied ever having Tatum Bell in for a visit. That’s how low things have sunk for Tater – he may have been misunderstoon in this mess (yeah, I had problems saying it like you did reading it) but it seems unlikely that he will catch on anywhere.

And with the RB situation as murky as it is, maybe they could have used another RB. Ahman Green is ‘healthy’ and the starter – but only until he gets hurt which will probably be…. right….. about ……… NOW. Seriously, I call Chris Brown ‘Mr. Glass’ but Green must be the original owner of that name. He’ll be hurt – so is it Steve Slaton or Chris Taylor. They will use all three this weekend but you won’t know who to start. However keep an eye on the game anyway – Taylor or Slaton could break out and give you an idea of the next RB you need to own in Houston. (Myself, I like Slaton.)

New Orleans Saints
TE Jeremy Shockey is not on the injury report – which means he will debut (finally) for the Saints against the Bucs this weekend. He may be a mismatch for that secondary so he should casue soem real problems for the defense. How much will he do, stats-wise? Hard to say. I feel wierd saying start him given he hasn’t played a snap in any game in quite some time. But the matchup isn’t bad and if you run TE-BC you could do worse.

That’s all for now unless something reveals itself during the repeat of NFL Live starting now. I will see you all tomorrow for the morning post and the Thundering Blurb Daily News Stampede at noon EST/9am PST.

Wednesday News and Notes

2 days to kick off and things are getting livelier – here’s the breakdown for the morning – and don’t forget The Thundering Blurb Daily News Stampede hits at noon EST/9am PST and tonight is the usual Thundering Blurb Fantasy Football Show at 9pm EST/6pm PST. Both on and ITunes!

Let’s roll -

New England Patriots
You don’t know how accurate this rumor is, since Belichick treats injuries like State Secrets but WEEI radio in Boston says that have heard an MRI taken on Tom Brady’s foot revealed that there is a crack in it. Of course there is very little chance of confirming this BUT I know a couple of places I trust that are working hard to dig up facts on this and I’ll keep you posted here and on both podcasts. There was a rumor last week Brady was on crutches which was denied, so take this with a grain of salt. Also consider that he could play with a small crack or fracture in his foot and likely will – still this could affect his mobility and effectiveness.

Don’t hit the streets in a panic, but it’s something to keep an eye on. I will keep you posted if I can dig anything up.

Arizona Cardinals
After all the noise about Anquan Boldin’s dissatisfaction with his less than Larry Fitzgerald-like contract, the Cards WR has done what I said he would – he’s been the professional he always is and is focused on the game and playing his best. Boldin was in a recent issue of the Arizona Republic and sounds ready to go.

“My teammates work too hard, and I know I’m a big part of the process with this program. If I held out or did anything like that, I’d be letting them down.”

If you had any reservations about owning him in a Fantasy league – put them to rest. With Warner behind center, Fitz may get more looks, but both WRs will shine this season.

Seattle Seahawks
There have been some reports that Deion Branch could be back for the opener. Seems like those were a little premature – according to the Seattle Times , he isn’t quite ready and is getting into football shape. You have to consider that Branch hasn’t played a down in some time and even when he returns, he will have to spend some time getting his rhythm back. While Hass needs his WRs to step up, Branch is a guy who will be nothing more than bench depth – at best – for the next several weeks, minimum.

Denver Broncos
Not that this should come as a shock to anyone as this is the birthplace of RBBC, but HC Mike Shannahan is planning on rotating Selvin Young and Andre Hall at running back this season. Denver Bronco beat writer Mike Klis is saying that after about 6 weeks or so, they’ll probably throw rookie Ryan Torain in the mix. That might not quite happen unless Torain is a phenomenal rookie who can step into an offence minus Training Camp and about half a season and just play – but it tells you things are the same in Denver as they always are. Hall will get a chance to shine in short yardage and spot work and Young will work everything between the 20’s. Shanny has already told us he doesn’t think Young will hold up for a whole season, so you knew there would be a split. I like Hall and I think he will do well – but as always, the Denver RB sitch is a difficult one to sniff out. Figure Young as your better bet, but watch Hall. And Torain might be a nice play late in the season, once he has some games under his belt.

Jacksonville Jaguars
Finally, Fred Taylor was reportedly arrested over the weekend for disorderly conduct. The AP report posted on ESPN is interesting and has Taylor egging bystanders on to do…. well I don’t know. But he kept on being loud and vocal while they were searching his car and he got himself arrested. This continues the rule that no good can come a) outside a Miami nightclub and b) after midnight. Taylor could face some sort of suspension – probably minor – depending on the full report and what he does next. The NFL will have somethijgn to say soon, though likely not before week 1 is in the books. Make sure you have alternatives going forward.

Thats all for now – the News Blurb is just a few hours away!