Cold Water For A Few Media Storylines

We’ll go with some random thoughts this morning, while attempting to debunk a few of the media’s favorite storylines right now.

I looked for it, but didn’t see the nationwide outrage last night as the New York Giants led the Green Bay Packers by 28 points and Eli Manning was in the game, throwing for the end zone on 4th down with 5:03 remaining in the game.

On Thursday night, just after halftime, for crying out loud, you had actual NFL beat writers (wait, does Buffalo count?) posting things like this:

I know the media roots for storylines, but rooting for injuries is cool?

Last night, not a peep. No hand-wringing over leaving Eli Manning in the game and risking the season. No accusations of hubris hurled at Tom Coughlin. Nothing. I’m sure the phone lines in New York are filled up with angry Giants fans embarrassed at their coach and his poor sportsmanship.

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Since the start of the 2010 season, the Patriots have forced 106 turnovers. That’s the most in the NFL. More than teams with heralded defenses like the Bears, the Giants the 49ers and the Steelers. More than any team. Not bad for the “worst defense in the NFL.”

I’m sure that’s just a fluke though, and that all those Patriots opponents just willingly surrendered the ball to the Patriots.

If it happened one year, maybe you can make a case that  it’s a fluke, but over three years, that seems like a pattern. It seems like something that is being aimed for. They give up a ton of yards, but they force the opponent into mistakes and miscues. Their points given up is usually upper to middle of the pack, which when you’re scoring as many points as the Patriots do, is perfectly fine.

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Watch out for the Broncos!

That’s the latest cry, with many in the media hopping on board the Peyton Manning express. Most are citing improvements that the Broncos have made as the season has gone along,  especially since the loss to the Patriots.Some have even made statements like “Is there any offense more potent than Manning and the Broncos?”

Last 4 weeks
Manning 100.0 QBRating / 7 td / 3 int / 862 yds
Brady 122.0 QBRating / 12 td / 0 int / 1195 yds

Broncos 114 pts
Patriots 190 pts

(Thanks Brian in LA)

Did the same people see Manning and the Broncos struggle against the worst team in the NFL yesterday? I know it was a division game, and those are always unpredictable (like the first Patriots/Jets game) but still, the Broncos really struggled at times, and Manning made some awful throws to boot. I’d take the Patriots running game over the Broncos, as well.

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We didn’t learn anything from this win.

This is a favorite of the local sports talk radio hosts. It’s been said after almost every win this season. Apparently we only learn after losses, or perhaps near-losses.

What did we learn after the last two wins? That the Patriots didn’t take these opponents lightly, and that they were focused on winning the game and moving on. They didn’t fall in any “traps,” they’re showing improvement on defense and special teams, and the offense continues to evolve and show new wrinkles.

Maybe someday we can learn to just enjoy games like these.

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Rajon Rondo is selfish because he’s trying to go for an assist record.

Is it possible to be selfish in trying to help your teammates score? Apparently so, according to some. (As much as he turtled to Tommy Heinsohn, Gary Tanguay is as guilty as anyone on this.)

About the only time the Celtics are being mentioned in the early going is when the topic of Rondo and his double-digit assist streak is brought up.

Tommy has the answer.

P.S. – How bad is that Steve Buckley column today? That’s about as bad as it gets. In short, Patriots fans shouldn’t enjoy a blowout win over the Jets, because they did that in 2010, and look how that turned out. Also, Patriots fans can’t feel confident in the offense, since it has been stopped on occasion. Also, the dynasty is over.

  • http://www.jimmacleod.com JimMacLeod

    Too bad Tony Mazz will read this column and think, “Wow, this column is full of good topics for today’s show!”

  • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

    as playoffs draw closer look for National media to start the, “Peyton vs. Eli” Super Bowl drumbeat….OH the Drama!…OH the Storylines!

    As far as Buckley’s column, that’s what it’s come to?….Enjoy NOTHING!!…even if Pats make it to the Super Bowl…DO NOT enjoy the playoff victories!!…It’s Super Bowl Champs OR NOTHING…until the Pats have the SB trophy in their hands, Pats fans are to fret, worry, question everything and ENJOY NOTHING!…If they don’t win the SB their season is worth no more than the Chiefs or Chargers season!

  • StatenIslandSamTheNewFiremanEd

    Thank you for saving me a dollar on the Herald today.

    The Tommy/Tanguay exchange is great on so many levels.

    Tommy asking Tanger to name names and Gary not wanting to answer – it’s almost as if it dawns on Gary that his entire shiite-stirring profession is meaningless. But he wouldn’t name names and potentially lose air time.

  • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

    lol…Bert Breer was one of those leading the, “why is Brady still in game and throwing?” charge the other night. But was strangely silent when Eli and Giants did the same…called him on it and got THIS reply. He seemed a little sensitive. (“dinner” my ass) >>>>

    @DryHeave1 Thx for all u do as a Twitter detective. A service to us all. I was at dinner, not tweeting. But yes, silly to have Eli in then

    • David Thirdkill

      He was still talking about the Brady thing the next day. Who cares if he (or Peter King , or anyone else) was busy during the game? All of those media people whining about BB and Brady were silent today. Weak.

  • http://www.bostonsportsmediawatch.com/ bsmfan

    What I found astounding is that why didn’t the media members call out Coughlin? They have no problem basically calling for his removal after every loss/every year (w/o a SB). He’s not the media darling that Rex/Jets are.

    As you said, NOTHING from the usual anti-BB corps out there. I went back and checked some of the folks from the previous post on this and all were either not commenting on the game. Guess what: Kenny Phillips + Andre Brown (broken fibula) got injured, both in the 2nd half, when the score was at least 31-10. Both are not Gronk but clearly hurts the Giants. Eli was also in until about 5 to go in the game where the Giants had the final drive where they stalled on 4th and goal.
    ————-
    Did you see we were part of the reason Fireman Ed quit?
    http://www.metro.us/newyork/sports/article/1156831–guest-column-fireman-ed-steps-away-but-not-as-fan

    @StevePoliti So at what point does Belichick sign Fireman Ed and turn him into a Hall of Famer?

    - Funny how this is a bigger story than the Jets.

    • John

      31-10 is not nearly as close to being out of hand as the scoring being 59-24 from the Indianapolis. Come on. These games are not all that comparable in that context. With Aaron Rodgers being on the other side, a team scoring a few quick TD’s can close a 21 pt gap pretty quickly. Being down 35 pts… not so much.

      Also, there’s nothing that can be learned from this Jets blowout win. I enjoyed the win… it’s always fun beating the Jets. But Bruce saying that we learned that ‘they didn’t fall into any traps’ and that they ‘don’t take opponents lightly’ makes no sense. what is that? What does absolutely crushing a decimated, awful Jets team tell us about the Pats? It was a great win, and I didn’t read a single article on the game… so I didn’t focus on negative coverage. The storyline going forward will be if they can secure a bye or not for the playoffs.

      • Chico

        who cares about storylines or what you can learn?

        • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

          What would beating or blowing out the 49ers or Texans tell us?..what would we “learn” from that?…that the Pats are now guaranteed to win the Super Bowl?….”What did we learn?” is just LAZY sports media gobbledygook like, “This is a statement game” and other such nonsense

      • http://bostonsportsmedia.com/ Bruce Allen

        It was 38-10, not 31-10. The Giant were attempting to make it 45-10 to go up 35 points by throwing with 5 min left. Seems about the same to me.

        Storylines are for those without the ability to actually analyze a game on its own merits. They have to make up easy-to-debate topics to generate discussion. I’ve actually heard complaints that Matt Chatham is “too complicated” for some fans. Those are the who prefer “storylines” over analysis.

        • http://www.bostonsportsmediawatch.com/ bsmfan

          Bruce, was it someone else in the media with the complaints or a general reservation against someone like him?

          Why do media members, who have plentiful resources to learn about true X and O in the NFL, won’t do it?

          I always wondered why not just media people who cover the NFL here but everywhere didn’t attempt to become like Bedard or Reiss. Both have 0 playing background but, at some point, learned about the technical aspect of the game. Bedard credits his time in GB? Every media market, including small ones, have an abundance of former players who could most likely break down strategy/play and teach people about the game. Not only that, but they could find a way to have the company pay for it/write off the expense as training and not have to spend a dime on training here.

          I can understand why someone doesn’t want to hear a 4 hour show on the difference between A and B gap blitz schemes. That’s the “knock” on Gresh and Zo but I think they balance this out well. If you can use this ability, as we love and praise Bedard/Reiss for, why don’t more media members go that route? Is it just “if I can make it just doing the Skip Bayless and delivering hot takes, why bother?”

        • http://bostonsportsmedia.com/ Bruce Allen

          Comments from a few fans/listeners. It even popped up on the whiner line yesterday afternoon.

        • http://www.bostonsportsmediawatch.com/ bsmfan

          That’s sad.

          In a town where it prides itself on college graduates and education where fans ‘complain’ that something is “too complicated”?

          However, I’m also not surprised. Even Bedard gets some absolutely moronic tweets from fans who claim to be Patriots fans and based locally.

        • Rick Mc

          It’s not an either/or proposition. Chatham can be long winded and use too much jargon. It doesn’t mean he has to talk about storylines. Just dial it back a bit and stop to explain things a bit better.

        • RobDX

          Really, because his stuff is pretty simple and loaded with jokes.

        • etak

          Well, there’s one problem for you, you’re taking anything someone said on the Whiner Line seriously.

        • HighWireNickEsasky

          I think Chatham is great. His analysis is rigorous and measured but not loaded down with meaningless lingo like you hear on Gresh and Zo. I learn things or appreciate new perspectives by reading/hearing Chatham. Gresh in particular is a dolt and uses terms that he doesn’t seem to truly understand.

  • the_other_side

    Bruce, you said, “I’m sure that’s just a fluke though, and that all those Patriots opponents just willingly surrendered the ball to the Patriots.”

    Actually, Hector Longo (you know, the guy who would trade the Patriots roster for not just Buffalo’s but also the Jets’) pretty much insinuates this week after week. The Patriots force no turnovers, it is always the poor play of the opposition which lead to such events.

  • Chris W.

    “Maybe someday we can just learn to enjoy games like these.” Bruce, I think the key is to avoid most Boston sports media. The Pats are playing well overall and winning lots of games year after year. Long gone are the years of hoping for 9-7 and an outside shot at the playoffs.
    No, BB and Co. aren’t perfect, but even if they were, the Boston sports media would complain about the boredom of their predictability and the difficulty of rooting for a non-underdog. *Sigh*

    • http://twitter.com/BruceNV Bruce Newman

      You’re right, Chris. The only media I read from Boston is TEC and Chris Price. Reiss used to be great, but got ESPNized. Being out of the area media bubble helps a lot.

  • RobDX

    I have trimmed the fat. I used to spend hours reading everything, and learned that only theses reporters have legit Stuff: Chatam (I ALWAYS make it a priority to read his piece every Tuesday and Friday), Howe, Curran (calls people out, esp Borges), Bedard, Reiss, Chris Price, Mike Petraglia (hardest working man in the biz) and for a young up and comer, Erik Frenz. I generally avoid Andy Hart. Erik Scalavino is the best of the PAts site. Kirk Minihane finally cleaned himself up, and DJ Bean is OK. And finally, I make it a must read for most of Buckley’s stuff, except that recent piece he did on the “Don’t like the Pats win”. Oh and Shalise Manza Young is hot, and knows what she is talking about, so watch. And Karen Gueregian isn’t bad.

  • nutcracker

    why, oh why, is steve deossie still employed in Boston? do tell.