There’s a lot of, Oh, no, what’s amiss with the Carolina Panthers affect activity about this week. Fortunately, it’s not contagious.
There’s annihilation amiss with the Panthers, added than that, at the moment, they are associates of the NFL’s all-inclusive boilerplate class.
Eleven teams, Carolina amid them, accept absent two amateur and 10 teams accept absent three. That’s the league’s boilerplate class.
The added 11 teams are outliers. The Los Angeles Rams are the alone aggregation afterwards a loss, and alone two teams, the New Orleans Saints and the Kansas City Chiefs, accept one loss.
Three teams accept absent four amateur and bristles accept absent five.
So, like best teams six weeks into the season, the Panthers are aggravating to amount out who they are. Do they comedy their appropriate boxy defense? They don’t. The Panthers accept 12 sacks this season, which puts them in a four-way tie for 22nd. Six of those sacks came in the opener adjoin the Dallas Cowboys, and they did aggregate three added adjoin Washington.
The aegis has been inconsistent. Aback the arresting line’s starters go out, the replacements attending like the Charlotte Hornets’ additional aggregation aftermost season. Aback the starters comedy the way we are acclimatized to, they chargeless linebackers to roam.
The offense, as anon configured, appears not to be advised to move bound downfield. Newton hit 67.5% of his passes Sunday. His continued pass, a accomplished leaping accession for a touchdown by Devin Funchess, was 23 yards.
The canicule aback Newton stepped into a bandy and you knew it was activity abysmal to Steve Smith Sr. or Ted Ginn Jr. are on hold. To see him use that amazing arm to bandy a abysmal spiral, you accept to appearance up for balmy ups. The Panthers move bottomward the acreage in baby steps, yet they about came aback from a 17-0 arrears adjoin Washington. Their drive ended, however, afterwards three beeline incompletions.
If you’re 11-years-old or younger, you can accusation the admiral for Carolina’s loss. If you’re an adult, you apperceive that the Panthers didn’t deserve to win.
The anecdotal this anniversary is that the Panthers absent to a characterless team. I’ve alike heard that drillmaster Ron Rivera charge go. If you absolutely anticipate that Rivera should be canned, I doubtable hallucigens are involved. That anecdotal would accept been alike louder if Graham Gano had not adored the Panthers the antecedent anniversary adjoin the hapless New York Giants with a 63-yard acreage goal.
Carolina appropriately far is average. The Panthers are 3-0 in Charlotte and 0-2 everywhere else. They’ve won the three amateur they were advantaged to win and absent the two amateur in which they were underdogs, although that comes with an asterisk. (Carolina opened as a two-point underdog at Washington, but the action accessible admired the visitor’s affairs and, by d time, the Panthers were advantaged by a point.)
Sunday, Carolina plays on the alley adjoin the Philadelphia Eagles, a aggregation that appeared to acquisition itself Thursday adjoin the Giants. The Eagles did what a acceptable aggregation affliction to, and handled New York 34-13.
Do the Panthers accept to win Sunday? I don’t affliction how afraid you are. In the seventh anniversary of the season, there’s never been a charge win for a aggregation with alone two losses.
But if you accommodate the Eagles, bristles of Carolina’s aing eight amateur are on the road. Aback the amplitude ends, we’ll apperceive who the Panthers are. We’ll additionally apperceive who they aren’t.
Do bodies still say, “Offense sells tickets, but aegis wins games”? I achievement not. I abhorrence clichés.
Also, it’s not true. Aegis didn’t win the Monday night d for the Green Bay Packers. The Packers won because quarterback Aaron Rodgers was sensational. He threw 46 passes and completed 25 afterwards an interception. He anesthetized for 425 yards and two touchdowns. He led his aggregation to 10 credibility in the final 115 seconds.
This is what abundant quarterbacks do. The Packers exhausted the San Francisco 49ers 33-30.
Completing passes is what every quarterback does. Through the aboriginal six weeks of the NFL season, there accept been added touchdown passes and completed passes than in the aboriginal six weeks of any division in history. The passer appraisement is academy through six weeks than it has anytime been. There accept been added casual yards in the aboriginal six weeks than there has anytime been, and there accept been added points.
To attempt successfully, a aggregation has to accept a accomplished quarterback. This is why the NFL has angled the rules to assure passers.
Is the NFL a bottom d because of the affluence with which teams score?
Did Green Bay’s 33-30 achievement Monday bore you? Did the New England Patriots’ 43-40 achievement Sunday night adjoin the Kansas City Chiefs bore you?
If you were bored, you were attractive for a acumen to be. Both amateur were a thrill.
Last Week: 10-5
Lock of the Week: Seattle (-3) 7 over Oakland. Won it; Seattle exhausted the Raiders 27-3.
This week’s games, with the home aggregation in CAPS:
Denver 2 over ARIZONA
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 8 over Tennessee
New England 4 over CHICAGO
INDIANAPOLIS 2 over Buffalo
MIAMI 3 over Detroit
Minnesota 4 over NEW YORK JETS
PHILADELPHIA 5 over Carolina
TAMPA BAY 1 over Cleveland
JACKSONVILLE 3 over Houston
BALTIMORE 1 over New Orleans
WASHINGTON 2 over Dallas
Los Angeles Rams 6 over SAN FRANCISCO
ATLANTA 9 over New York Giants
Lock of the Week: KANSAS CITY (-6) 10 over Cincinnati
▪ Best alloyed aggressive artisan Khabib Nurmagomedov, the Eagle, has challenged best boxer Floyd Mayweather to a fight. If they box, Mayweather acutely will abort the Eagle.
If they appoint in alloyed aggressive arts, Mayweather will acreage some punches. The Eagle has never fought a man with easily as fast as Floyd’s. But the Eagle is a marvelously accomplished technician, and he will booty the action to the ground, and aback he does, he’ll win. Thus, the action will never appear off…
▪ It was black to apprehend Duke basketball drillmaster Mike Krzyzewski, a bright, ablaze man, alarm what’s so far been appear in the federal balloon in New York City a “blip.” If the FBI investigates a subject, the accountable apparently is not a blip.
North Carolina drillmaster Roy Williams additionally said that the apple appropriately far apparent in the federal balloon isn’t one with which he’s familiar.
The ambience of the balloon is an FBI analysis into academy basketball’s underground, area players are delivered to a academy via money provided by above able-bodied abrasion companies. Those companies recruit players as adamantine as universities do. Coaches ability not be allotment of it. But they’re acquainted of it.
College basketball could use a spokesman, somebody with backbone and confidence to angle up and accede the problem…
▪ Christy Martin, who lives in Charlotte and is the above women’s failing champion, will advance a 10-bout agenda Saturday at CenterStage@NODA. A appropriate bedfellow will be Zab Judah, a above best in two weight classes and, at 40, still fighting. Watch his action with Mayweather. The arena anchorperson will be Amy Hayes. If you chase boxing, you apperceive who Hayes is. Ringside tickets are $70, and accepted acceptance are $35. For added information, go to Eventbrite.com…
▪ Nick Bosa larboard Ohio State to amusement an abrasion to a amount beef and adapt for the NFL draft, area he’ll be a top pick. He’s not alienated to the Buckeyes. He’s pragmatic. He can be advised by his people, on his time, and his abandonment won’t affect his abstract status. Coaches carelessness teams. Players can, too.
Two NBA amateur that counted were played Tuesday night. These were the 2018-19 openers, and Steph Curry opened his by demography a step-back, 24-foot, 3-point jump shot.
Did it go in? Yes, it went in. Isn’t this how Curry bankrupt the 2017-18 division for the NBA best Golden State Warriors?
Curry would accomplishment with 32 credibility on 20 acreage ambition attempts, nine assists and eight rebounds, and Golden State would exhausted the Oklahoma City Thunder 108-100. Russell Westbrook did not comedy for the Thunder; he was out with a knee injury.
The Warriors comedy unselfishly and with joy. Three players accomplished with bristles or added assists. All the Golden State players so able of scoring afresh attending for teammates who accept a bigger attempt than they do.
It was acceptable to acceptable aback TNT’s aggregation — Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O’Neal. They are so good.
There are two arrangement sports shows that angle out. The added is Fox NFL Sunday with Curt Menefee, Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, Michael Strahan and Jimmy Johnson. Barkley and the advisers are the other.
Nobody on Fox’s football appearance or TNT’s basketball appearance has to affected a beam for the cameras because there are absolutely funny guys on both. Foremost amid them Barkley. If Barkley appear non-Olympic year curling, I’d watch.
The NBA gets criticized for arena too abounding games. But if you like the product, you appetite them all.
The league’s best teams this division are, from the top: Golden State, Boston, Philadelphia, Houston, Oklahoma City, Utah, Toronto and the Los Angeles Lakers.
Carmelo Anthony’s abandonment from Oklahoma City makes the Thunder better. He ability accept admired arena there, but it didn’t show. Anthony plays for the Rockets now. Houston absent Trevor Ariza, a actual acceptable arresting amateur who active with the Phoenix Suns. His abandonment hurts as abundant if not added than Anthony’s signing.
In Tuesday’s aboriginal aperture game, the Celtics exhausted the Philadelphia 76ers 105-87. The d was sloppy; all black players estimated area their teammates would be. But there ability accept been 10 virtuoso players that fabricated you angle up and yell.
Jayson Tatum fabricated at atomic a third of them. The 6-foot-8, second-year amateur from Duke is 20 and fearless. He went third in the 2017 NBA draft. Abundant aces for Boston.
Joining him on the cloister Tuesday was Gordon Hayward, who aftermost season, his aboriginal with Boston, lasted beneath than seven minutes. In an abrasion boxy to watch, he burst the tibia in his larboard leg and confused his larboard ankle. The leg looked crushed, and he bare a additional anaplasty in March.
On Tuesday, the Celtics played a Hayward video on the scoreboard afore the game. Hayward absent his aboriginal four shots, his adrenalin affective faster than he did. But he accomplished with 10 points, bristles rebounds and four steals. Every time there was acquaintance I winced. He didn’t.
So, yes, the NBA division is underway. The Charlotte Hornets opened at home Wednesday adjoin the Milwaukee Bucks. Aftermost anniversary I best the Hornets to accomplishment .500. If they do, they’ve had a acceptable season, and put themselves in position to booty advantage of whatever comes next.
The Queens baseball drillmaster works the acreage at Waddell Language Academy, a acreage decrepit by rain. The assignment with the dry vacuums has continued been finished. He rakes the clay about home plate, tamps the clay bottomward and stomps it down. He rakes again, tamps again, stomps again.
Tall and lean, the drillmaster assuredly bliss clay off home plate. It’s like award a toy aback bounce comes and the abundant snow melts. You couldn’t see home bowl aback he started.
It’s a few account afore 3 p.m. aback he finishes home plate, a few account afore convenance starts. The drillmaster has been on the acreage aback 8 a.m.
“Yeah, I’m affectionate of a acreage psycho,” Jack McDowell says. “It’s like the art ancillary of me advancing out.”
You apperceive that he bankrupt up the pitcher’s bank first. McDowell won 127 amateur in his 12 Above Alliance Baseball seasons; seven with the Chicago White Sox, the aggregation that drafted him out of Stanford with the fifth aces in the aboriginal round, one with the New York Yankees, and two with the Cleveland Indians and assuredly with the Angels.
He was three times an all-star and in 1993 won the Cy Young Award.
McDowell, 52, affiliated a woman, Kerrie, from Wilmington, and confused to Charlotte in 2013. He had heard a rumor about Queens starting a baseball affairs and emailed contest administrator Cherrie Swarthout to accurate interest. She emailed aback – no, we aren’t. A year later, she emailed afresh – yes, we are. In 2017, they did.
McDowell had accomplished a amateur alliance aggregation for the Los Angeles Dodgers, and had accomplished adolescence baseball, and had accomplished his kids, starting with T-ball.
This, an NCAA Division II program, acquainted right. Also, he lives beneath than a mile away.
“A lot of people, accompany that accept accepted me a continued time, told me this was apparently the akin I would fit the best,” McDowell says in his little appointment at Queens. “I’d been apprenticeship at every level, and this came up and it was absorbing — starting a affairs and authoritative it into whatever we capital to.”
Starting a affairs would be the dream for abounding coaches. There were no cleats to fill. There additionally was no accommodation on which to put the cleats, no convenance acreage and no ballpark. How did you start?
“Probably authoritative a account of every distinct affair we bare to buy,” says McDowell. “We didn’t accept a distinct baseball, fungo bats or a rake. Or man, we didn’t accept any bat weights. Things pop up all the time you never anticipate about because aggregate is usually set up and there. Things you booty for granted. Brawl buckets. Yeah, brawl buckets. We didn’t accept brawl buckets. That’s crazy.”
What about players?
Players, he found. He admits that parents ability accept heard of him, but aerial academy players accept not. They go to Google.
McDowell, who has played in two bands, didn’t abound up with a buzz that had answers. So, he was acquainted of those that came afore him, like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.
Even if the players didn’t apperceive him, they believed in him.
“I’m not talking backup guys,” says McDowell. “I’m talking dudes.”
The aloof account Perfect Bold ranked Queens’ recruiting chic seventh in NCAA Division II. This is a aggregation that’s played alone one season, and that was a club season. They accompany the South Atlantic Conference aing season.
What do you attending for in players?
“Athleticism,” says McDowell. “I appetite an athlete. I appetite a guy that competes and battles. I appetite acceptable kids, man, acceptable kids. Guys that are activity to be aggregation players because that’s what baseball is.”
McDowell trusts his instincts. Enjoying the d and developing brotherhood supersedes analytics. McDowell wants his players to accept fun. He does.
“I’m admiring it,” McDowell says.
Just as his players apprentice from their Cy Young Award-winning coach, the drillmaster learns about starting a program.
“I added to my resume,” says McDowell. “I abstruse how to booty off the accouter off a benumbed mower and alter the belt that broke. I put it aback on.”
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