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SPF 's Week Three Pre-Pregame Show

Posted: Sep 23, 2007

Here we are again.  Let Week Three begin!


SPF Teams in BOLD

Early Games 

Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans (NFL Films game preview link)
St Louis Rams @ Tampa Bay Bucs (NFL Films game preview link)
Miami Dolphins vs. NY Jets (NFL Films game preview link)

Late Games

Cincinatti Bengals vs Seattle Seahawks (NFL Films game preview link)
Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons (NFL Films game preview link)
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Denver Broncos (NFL Films game preview link)
NY Giants @ Washington Redskins (NFL Films game preview link)

Sunday Night

Dallas Cowboys @ Chicago Bears (NFL Films game preview link)

Monday Night

Tennessee Titans @ New Orleans Saints (NFL Films game preview link)


The Head Coach/QB Media Paradigm

We've got a new rule for success for teams in the SPF Footprint:

From a media perspective, your coach should be boring, and your starting QB should be interesting.

Why?  Well, when the QB is a better interview than the coach, it is a good sign that the team is successful.  The QB is almost always the focus of negativity for a losing team.  Similarly, the QB is usually the golden child when the team is winning.  When the QB is out front with the media, that is a strong sign for the overall health of the organization.  When the coach is out front taking heat for the QB, it is a sign of trouble.

Let's look at each of our teams

 The Standard

This is a best of them.  Tony Dungy has always blended into the background and let Peyton Manning be the spokeman for the Colts.  When Dungy came to Indy, Manning was already established.  Dungy kept him in that leadership role.  One listen to Dungy and Manning shows how the two play off one another.  They parrot the same responses.  This week's game against the Texans has them both saying similar things - it's a big game, division game on the road, etc.  Manning goes on to compliment the Texans' D.  This team bears the standard for others to follow.

Almost There

Marvin Lewis has boring down as you can hear him discussing the Dhani Jones signing.  On a team of characters, Carson Palmer carried the Heisman and National Championship from USC right in the NFL.  All this team needs is to take the next step as a playoff regular.

Jake Delhomme was under fire last year, but he still has great media presence as you can see here.  John Fox just fades into the background.  Like Cincinnati, the Panthers need to get back to regular winning, but they are on the right track.

Few teams have had to overcome the adverisity that Sean Payton and Drew Bress did last year.  The Katrina ravaged New Orleans needed a boost.  Payton knew how to take a back seat like he does here  talking about the Titans MNF matchup.  Brees dedicated himself to New Orleans from day one and has great presence - watch him discuss the offense's problems .  It might not be enough this year, but it's enough for Saints fans to have hope for years to come.

Young, but in charge

Jeff Fisher talks at the same frequency as a sleep inducing noisemaker, whether discussing his new contract or the MNF game against the Saints.  Vince Young is already a media pro, as he shows week to week.  This week his comments on Donovan McNabb showed how savvy he is.

The Cowboys will always be a media circus.  Their QB needs to know how to work the media.  This week's Cowboy storyline revolved around the signing of "bad boy" Tank Johnson.  Watching clips from  Wade Phillips, Tony Romo, and TO  demonstrates how Phillips (and even TO) are starting to take a back seat to Romo.  Phillips has begun shedding his "aw shucks" routine and allowing Romo to speak for the team.  This must make Jerry very happy.

It has taken a while for Joe Gibbs to take a back seat.  Snyder made him the face of the franchise, while Gibbs has wanted his QB to step up.  Mark Brunell has veteran media savvy, but his declining health could only cover so much.  In this presser there seems to be a changing of the guard.  Gibbs is exhausted, while Jason Campbell talks about rising to the challenge.  Giving props to McNabb after he beat him on the field shows class.

Gary Kubiak is already a soft spoken guy.  The Texans' 2007 season has been all about establishing Matt Schaub.  After a 2-0 start, you can hear the progress in Kubiak's press conference.  Winning will always be the key for the Texans, but the Kubiak/Schaub duo shows promise.

Wild Cards

These teams seem to be going nowhere, but SPF sees signs of life.  In both cases, the head coaches are playing it right.  They aren't wooing the media.  They are just taking the arrows and moving on.  Time for their QBs to step up.

Bobby Petrino inherited the worst situation in the NFL.  However, SPF still believes that something can happen in Atlanta.  Signing Byron Leftwich should pay dividends.  We are not saying that the Falcons will make the playoffs, but they might be one of those "let it all hang out" teams that will be harder and harder to beat as the season moves on.  Listening to Petrino talk about his offense shows why we like him.  He seems ready to let it loose calling out Harrington's tentative play.  Leftwich won't be so tentative when he gets his shot.

[RAMS] Where is Marc Bulger?  He signed a huge deal, but he is nowhere to be found right now.  Obviously, it has hurt to lose Orlando Pace again, but Bulger must become a leader and spokesman for this team.  Torry Holt shows here that he isn't the answer.  WRs rarely can become team leaders and have a tendency to become a little self-absorbed.  Watching Linehan immediately after the Rams loss in his post game PC and a few days later shows that Linehan can handle the pressure.  The Rams are closer to winning than people might think, but it's on Bulger.

Teams in trouble

The Rams might find victory this week.  Even though we like Gruden, he has become an insufferable media presence.  Yes, he's had no QB to be the franchise's face, but he does this year with Jeff Garcia.  However, Gruden keeps holding onto the old school Parcells-approach making himself the center of everything.  That's ok when you are winning, but it creates undo heat when a team loses.  Listing to Gruden talk about Steven Jackson shows you that he says the right words, but his tone is just a little too condescending.  Let go off the reigns, Jon.  

Head coach Cam Cameron wants to make the media laugh.   But he's the punchline.  Cameron has shown no ability to inspire a veteran team.  He looks like a one and done coach.  Maybe he is preparing for a future in the broadcast booth.

Here's our worst guy.  Surprise, it is Jack Del Rio!  Listen to Del Rio selling himself like he is running for president.  All he wants to do is tell you how great things are and that his team is close.  He always is pumping up David Garrard, his QB of choice even though no one else sees the wisdom in it.  We've already made this point, but Wayne Weaver needs to pull the plug on this tired act. 

 Week Two Quick Thoughts

In biggest need of win:  Saints, Dolphins, Rams, and Panthers.  Lose this week, and their seasons are close to over.

Teams that will make biggest jump with a win:  Titans, Texans, and Redskins.

related tags

Southern Pro Football,
New Orleans,
North Carolina,

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