AAAA Matt RyanMatt Ryan for NFL MVP?

He gave yet another sterling performance in the Atlanta Falcons’ 33-32 victory against the Green Bay Packers that made a fairly compelling case for him to receive the honor: 28-of-35 passing for 288 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions and a passer rating of 129.5.

‘It’s nice to be mentioned in that, for sure’

Although Ryan has been the single-biggest factor in the Falcons’ 5-3 record, don’t talk with him about individual accomplishments or recognition that doesn’t come until after the season. He is very much focused on the here and now.

“We’ve got a long way to go,” Ryan told Kirk Morrison and Pat Kirwan on Movin’ The Chains. “We’re halfway through it at this point. It’s nice to be mentioned in that, for sure. But at the end of the day, it’s about winning games and finding ways to win games. And with us on a short week this week (facing Tampa Bay on Thursday night), it’s finding a way in the next two or three days to put together a really good plan to get it done in Tampa. And, honestly, that’s where my focus is at.

‘I’ll continue to take the same approach’

“I think if you worry about all of that stuff or what’s going to happen in January or any of those things, your focus isn’t in the right spot. So I’ll continue to take the same approach I’ve taken up to this point and try and play as best I can.”

 

Quinn: Something had to go wrong in Collins’ negotiations with Patriots to spark trade

Jamie Collins

Brady Quinn doesn’t understand it.

He described himself, on a scale of one-to-10 on the shock meter, “pretty close to a 10” after Monday’s trade that sent New England Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins to the Cleveland Browns for reportedly a third-round compensatory pick in 2017.

‘I wonder how many other people were willing to give up a third-round pick for him’

For Brady, the deal only makes sense if it was the fallout from something that went horribly wrong in negotiations between Collins’ representatives and the Patriots to extend a contract due to expire in March.

“In order for there to be a trade that occurs like this, the negotiations had to have been going pretty bad,” Brady told co-host Bruce Murray on the SiriusXM Blitz. “I mean, to the point where it’s almost as if his agent maybe pissed off the New England Patriots and then sent him to the Cleveland Browns. I wonder how many other people were willing to give maybe a third-round pick up for him. You’d have to imagine it was a number of teams.

‘He’s a very, very versatile player’

“I mean, you look at Jamie Collins and his ability to stop the run but also then to really match up with almost whatever tight end and running back, I mean, whatever you want to split out there. He’s a very, very versatile player. He can fit into a bunch of different schemes, even rush the passer.

“It tells me that there must have been something going on between the agents and New England. And, unfortunately, Jamie Collins ends up bearing the fallout from it. You kind of look at the New England Patriots and this has been what we’ve seen all along: the train keeps going. They feel like they can plug other guys in and get satisfactory play out of them, enough to possibly put them in contention for a Super Bowl. We’ve seen that before and maybe that’s the case here.”

 

Mike Singletary says Jared Goff ‘looks very promising’ in practice

As an adviser for the Los Angeles Rams, Mike Singletary gets an up-close look at rookie quarterback Jared Goff, the top overall pick of the draft who has yet to take a snap during the regular season.

The Hall-of-Fame linebackers likes what he sees.

‘As we continue to move forward, he just continues to progress’

“I think he looks very promising,” Singletary told Zig Fracassi and Mike Nolan on The End Zone. “I think he’s doing some good things. He’s getting more and more time in practice and that’s been a good thing, and I think that, as we continue to move forward, he just continues to progress.

“And every game that we can afford to allow him to watch tape, I think, is a plus for him.”

Cowboys’ running game, O-line ‘take pressure of Prescott’

What’s the difference between the Rams deciding to keep Goff off the field and the Dallas Cowboys starting rookie Dak Prescott in place of injured Tony Romo.

“When you look at the Dallas Cowboys that have a good running game, they have a huge offensive line and a lot of experience,” Singletary said. “So that affords you to be able to have Zak back there and be able to take a little more time and pressure off him.”

 

Jaworski calls Bradley’s firing Jaguars’ OC Olson ‘gutless’

Gus Bradley

Former NFL quarterback and ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski had some harsh words for Jacksonville Jaguars coach Gus Bradley for firing offensive coordinator Greg Olson Saturday.

Jaworski called the move “gutless,” and accused Bradley of using Olson as a “scapegoat” for the Jaguars’ 2-5 record.

‘This is one of the things that really ticks me off’

“I hate when this happens, I really, really do,” Jaworski told Bruce Murray and Brady Quinn on the SiriusXM Blitz. “I’ve been around the league since 1973 and this is one of the things that really ticks me off. And to me, it shows a gutless move by a coach when, all of a sudden, you’re blaming somebody else. You hired that guy, you brought him in. in other words, you’re not doing your job of coaching that coach up. A head coach has to coach the assistant coaches as hard as the assistant coaches have to coach the players.

“So, to me, it’s a failure of Gus Bradley down in Jacksonville. And then you make a scapegoat out of Greg Olson. I just hate whenever coaches do that and it shows me a weakness.”

‘Watching Bortles the other night, it was like molasses’

Jaworski also believes the Jaguars have some serious issues with quarterback Blake Bortles. Jaws sees the decision to bring in quarterback guru Tom House to work with Bortles at the midpoint of the season as a desperate move.

“Watching him the other night, it was like molasses, his ability to get rid of the football — dropping the ball down, big, elongated delivery,” Jaworski said. “Tom House is a guy that has tremendous respect around the quarterback fraternity league. He’s worked a lot of guys, Drew Brees and people like that that he’s helped.

“But clearly it’s a sign of desperation when here you are coming into Week Nine and you’re bringing in Tom House to work with your quarterback. That means there are some major, major problems right now.”

 

Taylor on Newton’s complaints: ‘Officials aren’t there to protect you’

Cam Newton

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton says he will take his case that NFL officials aren’t doing enough to prevent him from taking dangerous hits, like the one Arizona Cardinals defensive end Calais Campbell delivered below Newton’s knees without drawing a penalty Sunday, all the way to Commissioner Roger Goodell.

However, Jason Taylor thinks Newton is off base with his insistence that it’s up to officials to keep him safe on the field.

‘Your offensive line is there to protect you’

“The whole part about, ‘I don’t feel protected by the officials,’ well, sorry, ladies and gentlemen, the officials aren’t there to protect you,” Taylor told co-host Ross Tucker on The Opening Drive. “Your offensive line is there to protect you. The officials are there to enforce the rules of the game, make sure everyone’s playing it the way it’s supposed to be played, spot the ball, start the clock, go to TV timeouts, throw a flag when a flag is due. If they miss some calls, shame on them. They’re human; they’re going to miss some. But they aren’t there to protect you.

“I’m so sick and tired of seeing wide receivers run downfield, and every time a pass is incomplete, everyone throws their hands up in the air, looking for a flag. And every quarterback, they get bumped in the pocket, they want a flag. They weren’t protected by the officials. They want to get a cheap 15 yards. How about you throw and complete a ball and gain 15 yards?

‘Cam really shouldn’t put himself out there’

“I understand Cam has a point on some of the hits. The hit in Denver that was a shot to the head that they didn’t call, was a missed call by the officials. Shame on them. They should get a demotion or a negative grade on their report and pay for it down the road whether it be non-playoff games or whatever.”

But in Taylor’s view, Newton needs to be more conscious of what he says in public.

“Cam really shouldn’t put himself out there, I don’t think he should put himself out there like that, talking the way he did,” Taylor said. “And then some of the things he said, I just think he’s so extreme on some things. He’s a front-runner in some ways, when things are going well. And when things don’t go well, he kind of takes the extreme on the negative side of it as well.”

Featured Image: AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt

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