Friday, December 12, 2014

Garrett Hartley headed to the Cleveland Browns

Garrett Hartley will be kicking for the Cleveland Browns this weekend when they host their division rivals from Cincinatti.  Management finally decided to pull the trigger after having Hartley in for a workout on Tuesday.  In the workout he was a perfect 10 of 10 on his kicks while the other two kickers in for a workout struggled.

Cleveland kicker Billy Cundiff has been less than stellar this season for the Browns posting the lowest kicking percentage in the entire league for active players.  Last weekend he missed a 40 yard kick in the one point loss to the Colts leading Browns fans to publicly call for his release.  Cundiff did not participate in practice on Friday and it led to management saying that he had picked up an injury on Thursday.

Well Browns fans got their wish in the end.  Despite being sent home to New Orleans on Tuesday night the Browns finally decided to make the move calling Hartley back to town on Friday.  Garrett worked out for the Saints on Wednesday in a surprise move since Shayne Graham is 18 for 20 on the season.

Garrett Hartley has veteran pedigree as he helped the Saints win Super Bowl XLIV where he became the only kicker ever to knock in three kicks from over 40 yards in a Super Bowl.  He also became the only kicker to send his team to a Super Bowl with an overtime kick in the NFL championship win over Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings.  He was with New Orleans from 2008-2013.

So get ready Browns fans.  A new kicker is on the way for the absolute must win game with the Bengals on Sunday.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Taking a closer look at the TCU - Baylor argument

The talk of the sports nation is the latest College Football Playoff rankings released on Tuesday.  In the rankings we saw that TCU climbed to #3 thanks to their dominating win in Austin over Texas.  Meanwhile, Florida State remained unbeaten after slipping past another average opponent.  They fell to #4 as a result.  I can understand the head scratching that has resulted from putting TCU over Florida State.  What I can't understand is the TCU - Baylor debate.  Baylor currently sits at #6 in the latest rankings. Shall we compare the TCU and Baylor resumes?

Conference -
Both teams have a single loss in Big 12 play.
TCU - a last second loss at #6 where a phantom pass interference call led to the final field goal.
Baylor - a 14 point loss at a team with 5 losses on the season
Clearly advantage TCU

Non Conference -
TCU - cupcake, cupcake, a blowout win over Minnesota who has been ranked top 30 for the past two months
Baylor - cupcake, cupcake, cupcake
Clearly advantage TCU

Wildcard -
TCU has 5 wins against teams over .500
Baylor has only beaten 2 teams with a winning record all year
Clearly advantage TCU

So it looks pretty obvious if you take a step back and actually look at the entire season.  Can Baylor help themselves with a win over Kansas State this weekend?  Most definitely.  Will it be enough to lift them to a playoff position?  We shall see.  Will it be enough to lift the over TCU. Doubtful at best.