Sunday Paper (Year 2, Volume L)
Remember way back in the off-season when I was really nervous about the Jets chemistry because of the players they added/retained?
Antonio Cromartie and all his children by different women all over the country.
Santonio Holmes and his drug suspensions and other run-ins with the law.
I have to say, for the most part, these guys are OK.
The thing that brings this to mind is that none of the three had a particularly good showing in Monday night's debacle in New England.
Braylon Edwards, surprisingly for the first time all season, reaggravated his case of the dropsies. Antonio Cromartie had one of his weaker efforts of the season. And Santonio Holmes played OK, but made a fool out of himself emphatically signaling first downs when the game was well out of reach.
I'll start with Holmes. I hated the first down signals. But that's really been the only reminder of the negative parts of his personality. I know he's not perfect - but on the football field this year (and I've learned to focus on the football so as not to be disappointed by all the rest of the character flaws...not just with Holmes but across the sports spectrum) he's been near perfect. As a receiver he's been great. And I've been pleasantly surprised by his football knowledge in general. Dating back to 'Hard Knocks' and all the way as recently as 'Sound FX' following the Thanksgiving game, Holmes has shown a deep understanding of the game when wearing a microphone. And in the pre-season we saw him sharing that knowledge with the likes of rookie Joe McKnight. This gives me hope for Holmes. And I love the "jet" celebration after he scores a touchdown. Love it.
Braylon Edwards seems to have been humbled a bit. I think early in the season everyone in the NFL was after him. He couldn't take a wrong step without a referee throwing a flag on him - and I don't think it was totally undeserved. He does a lot of good charity work off the field, he can be entertaining sometimes, but he has done nothing on or off the field to prove that he isn't a huge idiot. Until now. Maybe he finally learned that he can't act that way - because the past couple of weeks he seems to have toned down his arrogant act on the field. Unfortunately, he also played much worse Monday night. I hope one doesn't feed the other - the arrogant persona being the only way he can be effective on the field. He just needs to get back to basics...I noticed again that the drops came Monday night when he left his feet to make a catch. That's always been a problem. Just catch the ball then run, Braylon.
Antonio Cromartie has blown me away. Remember during 'Hard Knocks' I found him quite charming. Then on 'Sound FX', he didn't buy into the Ochocinco bait. There was the time he shouted at the receiver, "You talk a lot but you're garbage." And then he didn't talk - he just played. He muscled Ochocinco out of bounds and Chad said, "That's how we going to play, Cro?" And that's how he played. He didn't talk, he just played. My only hesitation with Cromartie is how he responds to the adversity of Monday night. He didn't play well, and the team stunk. Kind of like the playoff Chargers on whom he quit in recent years.
Time for Cromartie - and Edwards and Holmes - to reward the faith in their characters the Jets showed when they signed them.
*The Dolphins have been pretty terrible lately, and specifically they looked awful last week against Cleveland. If the Jets struggle against Miami, that'll give me a bad feeling the rest of the way.
*I think it's time to state the obvious, because we're probably all thinking it: New Meadowlands Stadium is a really lame name for a stadium. NMS as an abbreviation is just putting lipstick on a pig. Someone should do something about that.
*Need the Bears to beat the Patriots today. In New England I would say there's no shot. But in Chicago the Bears do play better.
*NFC South Update - The Falcons are seven-and-a-half point favorites in Carolina. I'll take them giving the points.
*Over the radar moves of the week - the Red Sox, acquiring Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford. Certainly great moves, but I'm not writing them in atop the AL East just yet. I've seen too many teams overspend and then underachieve to buy in immediately. Also, last year their big problem was inconsistent pitching...until they clear up that question mark, I don't know that I'm a believer. Of course, now they're capable of outscoring almost anyone...so it might just not matter who's on the mound.
*I so wanted there to be turmoil in college football with the likes of Boise State challenging for a championship bid. But I may have been overlooking the fact all along that Oregon is a nice little team to root for. I guess I hope they beat Auburn...but I just can't get behind them all that much. I'm super-psyched about the bowl pool I enter every year, though...games start Friday!
*I'll try to do some tweeting today during the Jets game. But I do have to go out to watch it, and I will be with other people, so I'm going to have to be somewhat social with them. See what I can get away with tweeting @200miles_citi