Let the Jake Locker era begin. Matt Hasselbeck has been about as good as any free agent was going to be for us this year, but over the past month he's been unwilling (or unable) to go downfield. The result has been an increasingly ineffective passing attack that's been buoyed by a revived running game. When you compare that with Locker's two outstanding relief performances against the Falcons and Saints, it's pretty clear to me that the time to hand this franchise over to Locker is now, regardless of Hasselbeck's health. Now that's not to say that I would be irate with the coaching staff if Hass remains the starter. I do, however, believe Locker gives us at least as good of a chance to win, and he's the future of this organization. Plus, Locker taking over the job now means he'll go through next offseason and the next training camp clearly entrenched as the no. 1 guy.
Nate Washington was pissed over Roman Harper's brutal facemask against Damian Williams, but I have to admit that I've seen the same thing several times in other games and understood that while it's dangerous, defenders are hardwired to prevent touchdowns and that's exactly what was going to happen if he didn't grab Williams' facemask. As for the other stuff, I'd agree that the Saints' defense was overly-chippy, but given the way our defense has played at times over the past decade it's in poor taste to complain about those kinds of play. I mean to we really have room to complain about a high hit on a QB after all of the 15-yarders we've racked up? As long as nobody gets hurt, my beef is more with the poor officiating that allowed the Saints' DBs to do things like maul our receivers all game long. If they won't call it and you're not trying to hurt a guy just for being there, then why not do it? It's football.
Sunday's loss means we have to do something we haven't done
all year in a long time if we want to have a shot at the playoffs: win 3 games in a row. Granted they aren't against the greatest teams, but they're all divisional match-ups that have a way of being tougher than they should be on paper. Plus, while the Texans might not benefit from a win in week 17, you can bet that their veterans would love nothing more than to knock us out of the playoffs if they can.
Nate Washington struggled to get off the field after his 40-yard gain. While most observers figured it was Washington's ankle, my guess is anybody would struggle to walk at all with balls that big.
It was an up and (more so) down game for Chris Johnson, but he's not going to get a lot going when the offense is sputtering due to penalties and incomplete passes on 1st and 2nd down. CJ didn't have a good day, but the mistakes by the rest of the team were part of the reason why.
Jake Locker thought he got the first down on that 'failed' QB sneak... because he did.
The Jets are now our biggest opposition for the final wildcard spot and hold a one game lead, but their defense took a big hit was a possibly season-ending injury to safety Jim Leonhard. When Rex Ryan left Baltimore for New York, Leonhard was the first guy to come along, and he's been one of Rex's favorite guys for years now.
Pacman Jones went all LenDale White yesterday.
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