The Other Lead – Your Sports Weekend in GIFs, Pics and Video

Starting on Saturday in Lexington, Mizzou‘s Dorial Green-Beckham decided he wanted to win the game all by his lonesome, and he pretty much did just that. The wideout caught seven passes for 100 yards and FOUR touchdowns. The TDs weren’t boring either, here’s one where the cornerback pretty much became non-existent:

 

Later that night, the big Alabama-LSU game was what everyone had their eyes on, and it was close and rowdy early on. While Alabama went on to beat up on the Tigers in the second half, this LSU fan had fun doing his dinosaur impression after a touchdown. GEAUX T-REX, GEAUX:

 

In the NFL, there’s no doubt what the play off the week was. Whether it’s bad defense, blind luck, or just divine intervention, this A.J. Green touchdown on a hail mary as time expired was amazing:

 

This is a Jaguars player celebrating. The Jaguars won. The end.

TicketCity’s NFL Pick Em! – Week 8

TicketCity Ryan
Ryan027
Lindseygries7 RandyLou       7 Evan
tc-evan7
Zach
tc-zach7
Chris
SKPH2694-37-Chris-200x3007
49ers vs. Jaguars Jaguars +17 49ers -17 49ers -17 49ers -17 Jaguars +17 Jaguars +17
Cowboys vs. Lions Cowboys +3 Lions -3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3
Giants vs. Eagles Giants +6 Giants +6 Eagles -6 Giants +6 Giants +6 Giants +6
Bills vs. Saints Bills +12 Saints -12 Saints -12 Saints -12 Bills +12 Saints -12
Browns vs. Chiefs Browns +9 Chiefs -9 Chiefs -9 Chiefs -9 Browns +9 Browns +9
Dolphins vs. Patriots Patriots -7 Patriots -7 Patriots -7 Patriots -7 Patriots -7 Patriots -7
Jets vs. Bengals Jets +7 Bengals -7 Bengals -7 Bengals -7 Jets +7 Bengals -7
Steelers vs. Raiders Raiders +3 Steelers -3 Steelers -3 Steelers -3 Raiders +3 Steelers -3
Redskins vs. Broncos Redskins +14 Redskins +14 Broncos -14 Redskins +14 Redskins +14 Redskins +14
Falcons vs. Cardinals Falcons -2.5 Falcons -2.5 Falcons -2.5 Falcons -2.5 Cardinals +2.5 Falcons -2.5
Packers vs. Vikings Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10 Vikings +10 Packers -10
Seahawks vs. Rams Rams +11 Rams +11 Seahawks -11 Seahawks -11 Rams +11 Seahawks -11

It was a six-way tie for first place, with each of the people above nabbing seven correct answers. Surprisingly only one took the Broncos to cover, which they did and then some in the fourth quarter. Everyone picked the Patriots to beat the Jets, while only Zach was able to pick the Cardinals over the Falcons.  This is the closest it’s been all season, with three people also getting six correct.

TicketCity’s NFL Pick ‘Em – Week 7

TicketCity Ryan
Ryan0212
Brandontc-brandon9 RandyLou       9 Ashley
tc-ashleyb8
Matt
tc-matt8
Chris
SKPH2694-37-Chris-200x3007
Patriots vs. Jets Patriots -4 Patriots -4 Patriots -4 Patriots -4 Jets +4 Patriots -4
Chargers vs. Jaguars Chargers -9 Chargers -9 Chargers -9 Chargers -9 Jaguars +9 Jaguars +9
Bengals vs. Lions Bengals +3 Bengals +3 Lions -3 Lions -3 Lions -3 Bengals +3
Bills vs. Dolphins Bills +8 Bills +8 Bills +8 Bills +8 Dolphins -8 Bills +8
Bears vs. Redskins Redskins +1 Bears -1 Redskins +1 Bears -1 Bears -1 Bears -1
Cowboys vs. Eagles Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3 Cowboys +3
Rams vs. Panthers Rams +6 Carolina -6 Rams +6 Rams +6 Carolina -6 Rams +6
Bucs vs. Falcons Falcons -7 Falcons -7 Falcons -7 Falcons -7 Falcons -7 Falcons -7
49ers vs. Titans 49ers -4.5 49ers -4.5 49ers -4.5 49ers -4.5 49ers -4.5 49ers -4.5
Texans vs. Chiefs Texans +7 Chiefs -7 Texans +7 Chiefs -7 Chiefs -7 Chiefs -7
Browns vs. Packers Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10 Packers -10
Ravens vs. Steelers Steelers -1 Ravens +1 Ravens +1 Steelers -1 Steelers -1 Ravens +1
Broncos vs. Colts Colts +7 Broncos -7 Broncos -7 Broncos -7
Broncos -7 Broncos -7
Vikings vs. Giants Giants -3.5 Giants -3.5 Giants -3.5 Giants -3.5 Giants -3.5 Giants -3.5

Ryan broke through for 12 out of 14 correct, good enough for 1st place for the second week in a row. His best pick was taking the Colts to cover, which they did and then some. Matt was the only one to pick the Jets, while all six correctly took the Packers to cover 10 points over the Browns. Lots of tough games to pick in Week 8, including the Broncos at +14 over the Redskins.

The Other Lead – Your Sports Weekend in GIFs, Pics and Video

We’ll start this week with the fastest goal in MLS history, a Tim Cahill strike only 8 seconds into the NY Red Bulls’ game against Houston. An incredible goal no doubt, but the fault has to be place on the Dynamo defense. Houston lost and is now in position to miss the playoffs completely. Here it is:

Also on Saturday we had Game 6 of the ALCS, with the Red Sox one win away from facing St. Louis in the World Series. With the bases juiced and two strikes on him, Shane Victorino had the biggest home run of his career:

One of the best catches you’ll ever see happened in the Stanford-UCLA game. Stanford receiver Kodi Whitfield backhanded an bomb in the end zone for a touchdown:

Now for the NFL, how many people do you think it takes to cover Calvin Johnson? More than three, apparently. Megatron keeps amazing us with his otherworldly receiving skills, and he showcased them on Sunday against the Bengals:

Things didn’t go well for Nick Foles in his start in Philly against the Cowboys. The Eagles, who have been scoring 30 points a game this season, mustered only a single field goal in a 17-3 loss. This sums up the game:

Last but not least is the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs. They’re in sole possession of first place after the Broncos lost to the Colts and KC was able to hold off a Houston team that was desperate for a win. Here’s Alex Smith running a successful fake hand-off to no one when Jamaal Charles went the wrong way, then taking it in for a TD himself:

You keep keepin’ on, Alex Smith — though i’m not sure the ’72 Dolphins are shaking in their boots quite yet. The Chiefs face the Browns in week 8, so the streak is likely to at least continue for another week.

The Best 4th-Quarter QBs in the NFL

Matt Ryan and Tony Romo may be better than you think in crunch time.

 

I decided to take a look at how current NFL quarterbacks have done in the fourth quarter, since that seems to be the biggest thing talked about every NFL Sunday. Sure, you threw for 300 yards and 3 TDs, but how’d you do when it mattered most?

Taking into account regular-season figures on game-winning drives, fourth-quarter comebacks and TD passes thrown in the 4th quarter and overtime, the formula gave me a ranking that pretty much reads like a longevity of career list.  I had to change the methodology to encapsulate how many times they were able to pull of these feats with the amount of opportunities they’ve had. Here’s the original ranking, without anything to factor-in games played:

  1. Peyton Manning
  2. Tom Brady
  3. Drew Brees
  4. Eli Manning
  5. Ben Roethlisberger
  6. Tony Romo
  7. Carson Palmer
  8. Philip Rivers
  9. Jay Cutler
  10. Matt Ryan
  11. Matt Schaub
  12. Joe Flacco
  13. Michael Vick
  14. Alex Smith
  15. Matt Stafford
  16. Aaron Rodgers
  17. Josh Freeman
  18. Sam Bradford
  19. Andy Dalton
  20. Chad Henne
  21. Cam Newton

When using the numbers without taking into account how many games each of the quarterbacks have played, it makes sense someone that has been in the NFL since 1998, Peyton Manning, would be #1. The ranking corresponds closely with the amount of games played, except for someone like Vick who has been in the league since 2001 and is 13th. This isn’t to say Manning and Brady aren’t two of the best in the business in clutch situations, but when you take the amount of fourth-quarter comebacks and game-winning drives relative to the amount of games started, you get a better look at who has done a lot with less time. Also, instead of just going by touchdowns thrown, I used a TD-to-INT ratio in the second go-around. Here’s the final ranking after taking games played into account, indexed from 100:

  1. Tony Romo                           100.0
  2. Matt Ryan                              98.3
  3. Tom Brady                            92.7
  4. Matt Stafford                         91.4
  5. Peyton Manning                     91.1
  6. Ben Roethlisberger               84.7
  7. Drew Brees                          83.9
  8. Eli Manning                            81.1
  9. Jay Cutler                              79.4
  10. Josh Freeman                        74.5
  11. Philip Rivers                           70.5
  12. Joe Flacco                             69.1
  13. Andy Dalton                            68.8
  14. Alex Smith                              65.9
  15. Carson Palmer                     65.1
  16. Matt Schaub                          64.2
  17. Aaron Rodgers                      63.0
  18. Michael Vick                           62.6
  19. Sam Bradford                       58.1
  20. Chad Henne                          37.9
  21. Cam Newton                          33.2

Most wouldn’t expect to see Romo’s name at #1. He was 2nd in fourth-quarter comebacks per start behind Matt Ryan, 8th in game-winning drives, and 1st in TD-to-INT ratio. Ryan was 1st in comebacks and game-winning drives, but his TD-to-INT (31 to 21) ratio was only good enough for 9th.

Manning dropped to 5th in 4Q comebacks, 4th in game-winning drives and 5th in TD-to-INTs, putting him at #5 overall. Brady stays high at #3, with the aforementioned Vick predictably dropping to #18. Here’s the top and bottom five in each category:

Top 5, 4th-Quarter Comebacks  (% of games played)  

  1. Matt Ryan         19.3%
  2. Tony Romo      18.2%
  3. Matt Stafford   18.0%
  4. Eli Manning      17.0%
  5. Peyton Manning   16.9%

Bottom 3 were Chad Henne (7.5%), Aaron Rodgers (6%) and Cam Newton (5.4%).

Top 5, Game-Winning Drives (% of games played)

  1. Matt Ryan  27.7%
  2. Ben Roethlisberger  22.1%
  3. Matt Stafford   22.0%
  4. Peyton Manning   21.7%
  5. Tom Brady   21.5%

Bottom three were Sam Bradford (10.4%), Chad Henne (10.0%) and Cam Newton (5.4%).

Top 5, TD-to-INT ratio in 4th Quarter

  1. Tony Romo  2.5-1
  2. Aaron Rodgers   2.39-1
  3. Drew Brees   2.32-1
  4. Tom Brady  2.16-1
  5. Peyton Manning   1.84-1

Bottom three were Cam Newton (1.0), Andy Dalton (0.93) and Chad Henne (0.63).

Again, this is only the regular season. There are cases to be made for guys like Brady, the Manning brothers, Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees – all of which had to perform in the postseason to get their coveted Super Bowl rings. However, to compare everyone equally, I used the regular season. The NFL playoffs is a whole other thing that’ll I’ll try to tackle later.

I wanted a good sample size, so I made the cutoff 32 games started – two full NFL seasons. When you add in those that started all of 2012 and 2013 so far, Russell Wilson jumps to #1 overall while Andrew Luck is #2. They’ve certainly started off their careers as two of the most clutch performers in the NFL thus far, and the Seahawks and Colts are certainly reaping the benefits.

There’s no perfect way to determine who’s the best quarterback is late in games because football is a team sport and there’s so many mitigating factors that makes it impossible. Is Tony Romo really the best quarterback in the 4th quarter? General football knowledge tells you no. But is the stigma attached to him overblown? Absolutely. He’s lost his share of close games, but he’s also led 18 fourth-quarter comeback wins in only 99 career starts.

Matt Ryan might be the real star of this study. When it comes to bringing your team back late in the game and leading game-winning drives, there’s no one better. He’s only second because of his TD-to-INT ratio, and it doesn’t look to be hurting him or the Falcons very much. Everyone talks about Brady, Manning and Brees, but with the game on the line right now, give me Matt Ryan.