It was a really rainy Sunday here, which was great because I didn't do anything.
Well, anything important, anyway.
I read the papers, and I also watched the NFL Network's replay of the Jets-Panthers preseason game from Saturday night (it was not on here live).
I came away with some good information that I'm going to share with you.
If you're thinking the use of a picture of the kicker indicates the Jets game must have been boring...you're exactly right. What a terrible game.
Unfortunately, it's a formula I wouldn't be surprised to see replicated during the regular season.
Excellent defense, bad-looking offense.
There was one great run by LaDainian Tomlinson on about the third play of the game, but other than that there was not one notable play by the first-string offense. Mark Sanchez's numbers tell his story - 5-for-10 (inaccurate in that it seems like a better percentage than he should have had) for 12 yards (just about right).
The defense crushed the Panthers' first-stringers, but that could be as much a reflection on the Panthers' offense
than a big indication of what's happening with the Jets defense. The special teams played well, taking advantage of huge mistakes by the Panthers on punts...but that's also where the bright spot from Saturday night comes out.
Nick Folk worries me. Here's a guy the Cowboys didn't want...and check their roster carefully - they don't really have a better option. Both the Jets and Cowboys have title aspirations, and neither is very established in the kicking game. I'm not sure the Jets aren't done looking for other options...but at least Folk cashed in on his opportunities, making all three of his attempts, from 43, 36, and 49 yards.
*My final thought on the preseason game is that the TV broadcasts can be so misleading. You get all the bells and whistles of a genuine regular season NFL production, but unless it's a Monday or Sunday night national television affair, you get the local TV content dressed in national TV graphics. Sometimes there's no rhyme or reason to the broadcasters - for some reason Spero Dedes of the NFL Network was the play-by-play guy, with local guy Greg Buttle doing color. Hard to watch. I'll leave it at that.
*I just wrote about this, thinking that all Montreal Expos history was staying in Montreal, with barely any recognition in Washington
. Well, a week and a half ago, the Nationals honored Andre Dawson after his induction into the Hall of Fame. I had heard that was happening...didn't see any video of it. Apparently, though, the Nationals also unveiled a new 'Ring of Honor', honoring players from the Nationals, Expos, Homestead Grays, and Washington Senators. I stand corrected - and pleased - that the Nationals are doing this. (Thanks to Tyler Kepner of the New York Times for mentioning this in his Sunday 'Extra Bases' column.)
A few last baseball notes, since I'm writing about everything:
*Should I have known Vin Scully was contemplating his future and there was going to be an announcement Sunday
? Regardless, good for him for still having the passion for the game to want to continue to a 62nd year.
*Hope Scully has some good stories to tell about Rod Barajas, who the Dodgers got from the Mets Sunday in exchange for cash
. Not a bad move for the Mets, considering the three catchers were getting a little crowded on the roster. Looking forward it will be Josh Thole and whoever backs him up...Henry Blanco for now.
*The Mets need to stop talking like they have a chance in 2010. After Jonathan Niese's win in a rain-shortened game Saturday night, the talk was how much longer he'll pitch this season, as he's getting into unprecedented (for him) areas of innings pitched in a season. I'm not exactly an advocate for shutting pitchers down rather than stretching them out, but Jerry Manuel said that they would ride Niese as long as they were "still in it". Let's not make any dumb moves jeopardizing the Mets future to save anyone's jobs immediately please. Niese could be something special. Manuel already has a foot out the door. If you're going to shut him down, because that was the original plan, shut him down please.
*I do not blame Lou Piniella a bit for shutting his career down after Sunday's game. The Cubs are about the only pick I made this season that was wrong - and it was way wrong. I picked them to win the Central - and from early in the year they've been a disaster. It's not the way Piniella wanted to go out, I'm sure, but this probably ranks as one of the most difficult seasons he's ever had. He deserves to leave now if that's what he wants for himself and his family.