Steelers MMQB: NFL Preseason Week 2 Wrap Up

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What we learned after Week 2 of the NFL preseason:

  • This new kick off rule really blows
  • The Bengals are a legit contender…to go 0-16
  • Philip Rivers and Tony Romo got to show off how good they can look in August before completely collapsing in the regular season
  • The wrong QB managed to stand out for Denver, possibly pushing Tebow further down the depth chart
  • The combo of Reggie Bush and Brandon Marshall might be able to make Henne look like an average QB this year
  • Philly’s “Dream Team” found their worst nightmare in Pittsburgh

Another week of preseason football has gone by and the stats still don’t count for anything.  But it’s
still football so it’s still worth watching at least the first half of the games.  The regular season is now less than 3 weeks away from kicking off, the rosters have to start being shaved down.  In week 2 we generally saw the starters play about a quarter and a half, where some stars shined and some completely underwhelmed.

With more than half of the game’s kickoffs resulting in touchbacks, the NFL has taken one of the most exciting plays out of the game.  It’s a good thing that Devin Hester was so amply compensated while playing at the University of Miami, because his stock as a return specialist in the NFL has completely diminished.  Hester and Cleveland’s Joshua Cribbs won’t have nearly the impact this season that they’ve had before since teams are
kicking off from the 35 yard line making it almost a guarantee that the ball will sail out of the back of the endzone. The NFL decided the kick off was one of the most dangerous plays in the game and this change was necessary to avoid and prevent significant injuries.  As a fan of the game, I don’t want my star players getting injured and losing a whole season any more than the next fan, but I don’t understand why the NFL is so concerned with changing the rules of the game to improve player safety as opposed to improving
equipment such as pads and helmets to better protect players.

When a team that is supposed to be good, such as the Jets, plays against a team that is actually expected to be bad, such as the Bengals, I always wonder why anyone tries to make any definitive statements from the outcome.  Plaxico had a solid comeback game with 3 catches for 66 yards. Sanchez went 12-20 with 173 yards, however they were playing against the Bengals.  I love to poke fun at the Bengals whenever possible but they are going to make it too easy for me this year.  Rookie QB Andy Dalton finished 8-19 for 86 yards and 2 INT’s and at one point the Bengals had more penalty yards than offensive yards in the game.  The Bengals have been outscored 41-0 in the first half of their 2 preseason games.  Of course, if you ask Rex Ryan, this means that the Jets totally dominated and they’ll finally get to the Super Bowl this year.

My favorite quarterback, Philip Rivers, managed to outshine equally overrated quarterback Tony Romo in Sunday Night’s matchup of the Chargers and Cowboys.  These two teams completely disappointed fans a season ago, the Cowboys after Tony Romo went down with a broken clavicle, and the Chargers who failed to manage to win a game against the Raiders in the season.  Rivers has the advantage of starting the season with WR Vincent Jackson, who last year held out most of the season with a contract dispute.  Many can predict what I’m about to say, but look for Rivers and Jackson to combine for some fantastic fantasy numbers but fail to win any meaninful games yet again.