2011 NFL Week 10 Remix by Lloyd Vance

Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald is Taking It to the House’s Week 10 Game Ball award winner for his huge day in Arizona’s comeback win over the Eagles

With only 7 games left to be played for 28 of the league’s 32 teams, there is much more separation left to do within the NFL’s standings before January’s playoffs.  There are still the “Have’s” (5 teams with 7 wins or more including the league’s only undefeated team — Packers 9-0) and the “Have Nots” (11 teams with 3 or less wins, who are now basically spoilers).  But the majority of the NFL (16 teams) are still playing within former NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle’s parity dream section. 

With records ranging from 6-3 to 4-5 including 6 Teams with a record of 5-4 — Bills, NY Jets, Falcons, Cowboys, Titans, and Raiders that need to figure out if they are “Contenders” or “Pretenders” in the upcoming weeks.  There are 12 covet playoff spots up for grabs and you have to expect that some teams will soon be giving thanks this Thanksgiving holiday for their opportunity in the playoffs. Continue reading

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2011 NFL Week 8 Remix by Lloyd Vance

In one of Week 8’s shockers, the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the San Diego Chargers 23-20 in overtime on Monday Night Football. One of the stars of the MNF win and the Chiefs’ recent 4-game winning streak, that has put them at the top of the “wild” AFC West, is emerging RB Jackie Battle

(Philadelphia, Pa) — The midpoint of the 2011 NFL season is upon us and throughout the league there “should” be a pretty good understanding of who the “Contenders” and “Pretenders” are.  But with 9 more weeks of NFL action ahead of us, other than the Green Bay Packers (7-0) — who are vulnerable too — no one is very sure what is happening week to week in the topsy-turvy National Football League.  Parity is everywhere as there are 19 teams with winning records along with 14 teams bunched between records 3-4 and  5-3.  So buckle up as the second half the 2011 season is about to begin.

And here are some storylines that we will be following in the league’s second half:

  • Can  the Green Bay Packers go undefeated for the entire 2011 season and/or be the first team since Patriots in 2000-2001 to go to back-to-back Super Bowls
  • Can rookie quarterback Cam Newton continue his magic carpet ride towards the Rookie of the Year Award and possibly Peyton Manning’s rookie passing yardage record
  • Are the Steelers, Chiefs, and Eagles truly back after producing winning streaks after some “slow” starts
  • Could it be possible that the Indianapolis Colts will not win a game in 2011 and match the 2008 Detroit Lions (0-16)…. If that happens at least they will get Stanford QB Andrew Luck
  • Which coach currently on the hot seat (Dolphins Tony Sparano, Jaguars Jack Del Rio, Colts Jim Caldwell and others) will be the first one issued their pink slip
  • Will the Niners (6-1) have the NFC West wrapped up by Thanksgiving Continue reading

2011 NFL Week 7 Remix by Lloyd Vance

Chicago Bears RB Matt Forte brought some serious NFL talent to Europe as his team thumped the Tampa Bay Bucs in the return of American professional football to London’s Wembley Stadium for the 5th straight season

(Philadelphia, Pa) — This is one of my favorite times on the NFL calendar right before the midway part of the season.  Teams are starting to separate into “Contenders” and “Pretenders” and each week certain teams are getting closer to the playoffs while others get closer to preparing for the 2012 NFL Draft aka “The Suck for Andrew Luck Sweepstakes”.

In looking at the current NFL standings here’s the breakdown: The “Elite” – Packers (7-0), Patriots (5-1), Niners (5-1), and Saints (5-2); “Teams on the Cusp” — Lions (5-2),  Steelers (5-2), Ravens (4-2), Chargers (4-2), Giants (4-2), and Bills (4-2);  “Stuck in the Middle” glut of 11 inconsistent teams (records of 4-3 or 3-3), who are caught in the NFL’s parity-filled middle and either need to join the playoff hunt or fall back – Bucs (4-3), Raiders (4-3), NY Jets (4-3), Texans (4-3), Bears (4-3), Falcons (4-3), Cowboys (3-3), Browns (3-3), Chiefs (3-3), Titans (3-3), and Redskins (3-3);  The “Pretenders”, who are only a shade away from the league’s bottom rung – Seahawks (2-4), Eagles (2-4), Broncos (2-4), Panthers (2-5), and Jaguars (2-5); and lastly  the “Putrid” (i.e. These teams should just skip to the 2012 NFL Draft) – Cardinals (1-5), Vikings (1-6), Rams (0-6), Dolphins (0-6), and Colts (0-7)

Continue reading

2011 NFL Week 6 Remix by Lloyd Vance

Week 6 of the 2011 NFL Season was very exciting as teams like the Packers (6-0) and Patriots (5-1) continued to march towards the playoffs.  But all that was on every fan’s mind was talking about “Handshake Gate” as Niners HC Jim Harbaugh and Lions HC Jim Schwartz had a “misunderstanding” after San Francisco ended Detroit’s undefeated hopes

(Philadelphia,Pa) — This is one of my favorite times on the NFL calendar right before the midway part of the season.  Teams are starting to separate into “Contenders” and “Pretenders” and each week certain teams are getting closer to the playoffs while others get closer to preparing for the 2012 NFL Draft — hello Stanford QB Andrew Luck. Continue reading

2011 NFL Week 5 Remix by Lloyd Vance

Oakland Raiders head coach Hue Jackson was overcome with emotion as his team, “Just Won One” for the late Al Davis.  The Raiders defeated the Houston Texans 25-20 in a bittersweet win

(Philadelphia, Pa) — The 2nd quarter of the NFL season began with a wild weekend filled with upsets, furious finishes, unbelievable comebacks, teams rising, teams falling toward the “parity” packed middle, downtrodden teams (1 or fewer wins) slipping toward preparing for the 2012 NFL Draft and further distinctions between contenders and pretenders.  As hard as it is to believe the NFL season is moving closer to being half over.  But the important thing for everyone is to enjoy the wackiest and quickest league around while it is lasts.  Week 5 of the 2011 NFL Season should have been titled, “Moving Week”.  Because this is the time of an NFL season where teams start to distinguish themselves as they move towards season-defining November and December games.

I love this time of the year, because separation starts between the good teams, middle of the road teams, bad teams, and wretched teams, that are “Believing in Later”, looking towards the draft in April.  As we get closer to the mid-point of the NFL season boundaries will become clearly defined between these different levels of teams.  That is not to say though that there will be some games where a surprise upset unfolds.  One of the bigger parts of this time in the NFL schedule is that byes (weeks 4-10) are crucial for resting injured players, making personnel moves, and overall reflection for teams to see where they stand post training camp/early season as they prepare for a playoff run or the draft. Continue reading

2011 NFL Season: Week 4 Remix by Lloyd Vance

After leading Green Bay to a dominating win over the Denver Broncos, 2011 first quarter MVP and Packers QB Aaron Rodgers  gets my Game Ball for Week 4 of the 2011 NFL season

One quarter of the 2011 NFL’s “Back to Football” season is already in the books with the recent close of Week 4 around the league.  Before we start recapping Week 4’s action on the field, I have to commend the NFL for their great work this week in supporting the fight against breast cancer with their “Crucial Catch” campaign.  As someone whose family has been personally affected by the disease, it is great to see the NFL getting involved in trying to find a cure. 

There was a “pink” everywhere in NFL stadiums including NFL coaches’ hats, fan jerseys, goalpost pads and ribbons on NFL personnel — really like Tampa Bay Bucs QB Josh Freeman rocking some pink cleats on Monday Night Football for the cause.  For a very good cause, “tough” NFL players thumbed their nose at stereotypes by wearing pink uniform attire including Saints QB Drew Brees, NY Jets RB LaDainian Tomlinson, Philadelphia Eagles QB Michael Vick, Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald, Patriots WR Chad Ochocinco and others. Continue reading

2011 NFL Week 3 Remix by Lloyd Vance

The Baltimore Ravens (2-1) look to be back near the top of the AFC and rookie WR Torrey Smith was one of the stars from  Week 3 of the 2011 NFL Season

As the calendar changes to autumn, the NFL moves closer to the first quarter marker of the 2011 NFL season.  Week 3, which I dubbed “Separation Sunday”, definitely helped continue the 12-week process of sorting out which teams are contenders and pretenders before November and December’s playoff push.   T

One thing is apparent, no one in their right mind could have predicted the wacky start to this season.  Week 3 had an NFL record 9 games that were decided by 3 points or less.  The capricious world of the NFL was never more on display than this week as the Buffalo Bills coming off a  4-12 season impressively beat the New England Patriots 34-31 in Orchard Park, NY.  The win ended the Patriots’ 15-game regular-season winning streak over their AFC East rival.  The Bills also became the first team in NFL history to win consecutive games after trailing by 18 points or more.  Unbelievably the Bills were the last team to win in 2010, but this is a whole different season. Continue reading