Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Josh Freeman Benched, Asks for Trade

This blog is an unabashed supporter of Grandview High School product Josh Freeman who has been an NFL quarterback since 2009.

Josh Freeman has been benched by the Tampa Bay Bucs.  He is now requesting to be traded.  How did it come to this?

Josh's main problem has been up and down play.  He looked like a rookie in 2009.  He was good stuff in 2010.  He stepped back in 2011.  He had a significant streak of excellent play in 2012.  He has been horrible in 2013.

In reading comment and message boards on the situation, the blame has been placed variously on the Tampa Bay coach Greg Schiano and on the quarterback himself.  It's been noted that he's had a bunch of coaches and offensive co-ordinators in his short career.

When Freeman was being evaluated in the course of the 2009 draft, the elite QBs eligible to draft, Freeman, Mark Sanchez, Matthew Stafford, and Chase Daniels, none of them were considered locks.  All had problems.  Physically, Freeman was considered the best prototype of an NFL quarterback, with arm strength and size.  Questions revolved around football IQ and work habits.

This writer has always maintained that while Josh Freeman is very talented, he is not so talented that he can just go out on the field without strong preparation and practice.  Can he read defenses?  Can he work his progressions?  Does he know when to pull it down and run?  Can he inspire the other men in the huddle, showing them a calm demeanor under stress?

The best fit for Josh Freeman might just be the Oakland Raiders.  Oakland is the home of Tampa Bay's former OC, Greg Olson, and under Mr. Olson, Josh had his best years.  I'm not terribly excited at the idea of the nasty Raiders improving themselves with Josh Freeman.  However, it is clear that Josh has no chance of progressing his career in Tampa Bay.  It is time for a fresh start for Josh Freeman.  Once there, wherever there turns out to be, Josh needs to work at improving himself--his quarterback and leadership skills--and taking advantage of a fresh start.

The Last Time We Talked...

The last time we talked, the Royals were at the beginning of yet another losing season...

The spectacle of the Kansas City Chiefs going 2-14 was still a long way off.

Missouri had not yet discovered how tough it was to play football in the SEC.

Now, in September, the 2013 Major League Baseball season is drawing to a close.  The Royals have not yet been mathematically eliminated from the race for the second wild card spot.  The boys in blue, however, are assured of their first winning season in 2 decades, and have been awesomely exciting to watch.  If not for a disaster of a May, and some bad losses in August, we might really be talking playoffs.  Royals are still short on offense, but good pitching and defense means the team is rarely completely taken out of a game.  2014 has the potential to be a beautiful season, but it will require work in the off-season to keep up the level.

The Chiefs are 3-0, with a game coming up against the suddenly (Oh they are bad!) pathetic New York Giants here in Kansas City. The Giants are suddenly old, and the potential for 4-0 is very real.

It cracks me up when cynical and jaded fans are looking for what is wrong, or people accuse followers of Kansas City teams of not being realistic, of only looking at their teams and their chances with rose colored glasses.  Part of following a team is always being hopeful, and when your team is going well, enjoying the ride.  Yet, the informed fan well knows the deficits of the team.  The Royals offense lacks home run power and is too subject to disappearing.  The Chiefs offensive line is not as good at pass protection as it needs to be.  We need to find out if we finally have a real running mate for Dwayne Bowe at wide receiver.  Why in the world does Sporting Kansas City always manage to play down to the level of their competition and make a match out of what should be an easy win?  Aurelin Colin is going to get Sporting in trouble one day with his temper.

So we have the Royals much improved, the Chiefs with a great beginning, and Sporting KC driving to the playoffs and a real chance to take the MLS championship.  Oh, yeah, stuff can go wrong--one must realize at bottom there is only one champion--but to be able to, as a fan, realize that your team is not too bad, that is something.

So, yeah, a long year coming for the New York Giants...who would have imagined the New York Jets have more wins?!?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Royals Stinking Up the Place!

Now, I had no illusions that anything was a sure thing about this baseball team.  If the pitching held up, if the hitters hit, if we played good ball...blah blah maybe we sneak up on someone.

Well, first, the injury bug bit the team.  Then the Royals just came out and played badly.  Now we are up to losing 11 in a row and people are starting to really, really criticize the team, the manager, the GM, the owner and the dude who cooks hot dogs...

I would say just calm down, except for this:  the longer this goes on, the harder it all gets.  You will need a winning streak of 8 or 9 just to get to .500.  Confidence has floated out the window and will be hard to retrieve.  People are really mad about the marketing theme.  It is not good.

We can still see .500 ball--81 wins 81 losses--but wins must start soon or even this modest dream may go by the wayside.  In the meantime, this city's fan bases' attitude towards all the losing by its NFL and MLB franchises is building.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Just Wow!

What an amazing past couple of weeks! It has just been amazing on the sports scene.

--First Daytona 500 postponed by rain. After racing started, some spectacular crashes.
--Incredible KU-MU game at Allen Field House.
--Double OT win by UVM in the AmEast semis, after horrible, terrible loss to Binghamton. (Binghamton's only win all year.)
--New Orleans Saints "defensive bounty" scandal
--Spring training started for baseball
--Grandview advanced to state playoffs, but did lose in the second game.

More to come, including UVM playing in their 5th AmEast championship, Big 12 and NCAA tourneys, baseball spring continues, and more.

I know it is part of bread and circuses, and counts for little in the big picture, but it is a little bit of fun dropped into the midst of our confusing, annoying and unpredictable world.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Hoops Action

It took about a half of basketball to get back into the swing of things; if the weather holds up, I expect to attend several games in the next 10 days.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

High School Hoops Wind Down

Last year, the weather really messed up the high school basketball schedule and compressed it into the last few weeks of February. This year, the schedule is normal, with maybe a game a week for most teams. Since I am the South Kansas City Observer, we always concentrate on the schools on the south Missouri side. So here are the remaining games for Ruskin, Grandview, and Center.

For Ruskin:
Today, 2/7 at North KC
2/10: Truman
2/14: at Central in St. Joe
2/17: Lee's Summit West

For Grandview:
Today, 2/7: Kearny
2/10: Platte County
2/14: at Oak Park
2/15: Park Hill
2/17: at Liberty

For Center:
today, 2/7 at Clinton
2/10: Smith Cotton
2/17: O'Hare

Take in a game--it is fun!

Update: All three teams won tonight--Center and Grandview are having very nice years with Center having lost just 5 games and Grandview on a 9 game win streak. Ruskin is playing .500 ball this year--a bit inconsistent...

Another Super Super Bowl

We are going to get spoiled. We've had some pretty good Super Bowls lately, since 2008's first Giants-Patriots match. Even games whose final scores were not that close had wonderful dramatic moments and twists. Of course, as a Giants fan, I could not be more pleased.

Defense proved itself to be important in this game, as well as execution. Ill timed drops and penalties affected both teams. There are several plays you can play "if only..." games with and wonder if the outcome would have been different.

Next, the draft, and then no more football--that's OK, I am ready for hoops, baseball and the rest!