Tag:Tom Brady
Posted on: December 9, 2010 12:43 am

Top Ten With a Twist: Non-Brady MVP votes

M. Ryan would be the top MVP candidate in the league right now if it wasn't for a guy named T. Brady (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

This week, seemingly everybody is proclaiming Patriots QB Tom Brady as the player who should be named MVP – including his former teammate, Troy Brown, who I talked to for this week’s Five Questions (or more) segment. After watching Brady dissect the Jets on Monday, that’s hard to argue.

But we’ve still got four weeks of regular-season NFL football, so Brady can’t be named the Most Valuable Players quite yet (I think that’s actually in the rules). That said, there are a number of players who have done quite a bit to help their respective teams this season that also must be in the conversation for MVP. What happens, after all, if Brady throws 10 interceptions in the final four games and the Patriots go 0-4 in that stretch?

Thus, this Top Ten With a Twist pays homage to those who are having hellaciously good years for teams good and bad and could creep into a voter’s conscience (assuming he/she doesn’t simply write Brady’s name in every possible space on the ballot). I’m not saying most of these guys should win; I’m just saying they should be considered.

10. Julius Peppers, DE, Bears: In his first season in Chicago, the defense, ranked as the third-best in the NFL, is a huge reason why the Bears are 9-3, lead the NFC North and own the second-best record in the conference (tied with the Saints). He’s recorded seven sacks and a very strong six passes defended and he’s forced three fumbles. You could also make a case for Brian Urlacher in this spot.

9. Drew Brees, QB, Saints: So many other quarterbacks have made big headlines this season – some for good reasons (we’ll get into those candidates later) and some for bad reasons (ahem, Brett Favre) – and it seems like Brees has been slightly ignored. That’s also because he isn’t the top quarterback in his division at this point and because the Saints are in danger of not winning the NFC South (more on the Falcons below). But the fact is that Brees is statistically the most-accurate quarterback in the league, and the Saints are 9-3 with a chance to return to the Super Bowl. That’s not too shabby.

8. Clay Matthews, LB, Packers: Remember how amazingly fast Matthews started the season, recording six sacks in the first two games? Well, he’s slowed considerably since then, and even Miami’s Cameron Wake has surpassed him for the league lead (Wake has 12 sack to Matthews’ 11.5). Matthews only has one sack in the past three games, but he’s still got a good shot at defensive player of the year (along with Julius Peppers, Steelers LB James Harrison, Eagles DE Trent Cole and Bills NT Kyle Williams), and he’s still having one heck of a year. 

7. Jamaal Charles, RB, Chiefs: Coming off a sophomore season in which he averaged 5.9 yards per rush and finished 2009 with 1,120 yards and seven TDs, Kansas City rewarded him by going out and getting (gulp!) a legitimate RB in Thomas Jones. In his first two games of the season, Charles averaged 11 carries and 70.5 yards per contest, leaving some of us to wonder what was going on in Kansas City. But Charles has been awesome for the resurgent 8-4 Chiefs, averaging a ridiculous 6.2 yards per carry while gaining 1,137 yards.

6. James Harrison, LB, Steelers: You’d be forgiven if, the other day when Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin was defending Harrison in another laborious discussion about fines, you would have scoffed when Tomlin said Harrison was having an MVP-type season. But look at the plays he’s made and the numbers he’s produced. Harrison is third among linebackers with 10 sacks, he’s defended six passes and produced two interceptions, and he’s forced six fumbles, best among LBs. And he does it for a top-five defense which could help the Steelers to a deep postseason run. He's the MVP of NFL fines, but he might be the MVP overall as well.

5. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers: You’ve got Matthews on defense, and now you’ve got Rodgers as the catalyst for an offense ranked in the top-10, despite a dreadful running game. Rodgers has been so impressive (a 65.4 completion percentage, 3,243 yards, 23 TDs and nine INTs) without the benefit of Ryan Grant and having to play with very little support in Brandon Jackson and John Kuhn (they rank 30th and 50th in rushing in the league, respectively). His MVP candidacy obviously will ride on whether he can get Green Bay into the playoffs.

4. Philip Rivers, QB, Chargers: A week ago, I might have picked Rivers a little bit higher, but he’s coming off a bad, bad home loss to the Raiders that dropped San Diego two games behind the Chiefs in the AFC West. Not that Rivers played poorly, because he wasn’t bad. But it’s tough to get excited about a QB leading a 6-6 squad who very well could miss the playoffs, even if he is the guy who’s led his team to all six of those wins.

M. Jones-Drew has made himself a strong MVP candidate in the past five weeks (US Presswire). 3. Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, Jaguars: What would you say if I told you that Jones-Drew has rushed for at least 100 yards in his past five games and helped Jacksonville win four of its past five to take over first place in the AFC South? Would you say that man would be an MVP candidate? I would.

2. Michael Vick, QB, Eagles: Yes, he’s missed three games because of injury, but other than that, Vick is, bar none, one of the best quarterbacks in the league and he’s having a career season in a year in which he wasn’t supposed to be the starter (you might have forgotten about a guy named Kevin Kolb). He could, throughout his career, always change the game’s dynamic with his running ability (and he’s got 467 rushing yards, a 6.3 average and six scores this season), but he’s showcased his arm this year as well (63.8 completion percentage, 2,243 yards, 15 TDs, two INTs). He is absolutely a complete quarterback and absolutely an MVP candidate.

1. Matt Ryan, QB, Falcons: The “Matty Ice” moniker has already worn thin – unlike the “Pocket Hercules” nickname for Jones-Drew – but there’s no question that it’s reflective of his playing ability. Even when he doesn’t play altogether well – an example would be last week in Tampa Bay – he still somehow finds a way to lead Atlanta to a win. At this point, the Falcons are the best team in the NFC, and Ryan is the biggest reason for that. If Brady falls off in the last month of the year, my vote at this point would go to Ryan.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed .

Posted on: December 8, 2010 5:12 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2010 6:03 pm

Hot Routes 12.8.10: Roethlisberger rocking mask

Posted by Will Brinson

Got a link for the Hot Routes? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL).
  • Adam Gretz of Steelers Lounge puts the Troy Polamalu sack on Joe Flacco (it was kind of big in the context of Sunday night's game) to the old screenshot/freezeframe test, because someone dared to insult the importance of Polamalu in that particular play.
  • Excellent piece by Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network on the similarities between Josh McDaniels in Denver and Bill Belichick in Cleveland, and how the Broncos (as they've admitted) might not have actually been prepared for "change" they way they appeared to be with McDaniels hiring. Also: sometimes it's good to fail, because you learn lessons.
  • Such a cool story from Jenny Vrentas of the New Jersey Star-Ledger about Keith Fitzhugh and how he'd rather conduct trains than play for the Jets. Can't say I blame him, considering how TERRIBLE THEY ARE DID YOU SEE THEM LOSE TO THE PATS? (/over-reactionary sarcasm)
  • Jerry Richardson wrote a letter to all Carolina Panthers PSL holders taking "full responsibility" for the ugly season in Charlotte, explaining how the organization hopes to rebound, and how the CBA uncertainty affects everyone.
Posted on: December 7, 2010 12:29 am
Edited on: December 7, 2010 10:08 am

Brady emerges as clear-cut MVP leader

Posted by Will Brinson

After eviscerating the Jets on the most public of levels Monday night (a 45-3 final score on the biggest stage in a while), there's little question that Tom Brady is the NFL's current leader in the MVP race, and, frankly, it's not all that close.

The Pats quarterback was the consummate Patriot veteran after the beatdown, giving a standard Belichickian answer to Suzy Kolber on the field.

"When you win say little, when you lose, say less," Brady said, attributing the quote to his coach.

What should he have said? Rhetorical answer: nothing. That's because there wasn't a need to offer anything verbally, when the score, and Brady's performance, said everything that needs to be said.

But back to Brady, who happened to notch a couple of marks on his belt Monday, setting the NFL record for most consecutive regular season home wins (26) and passing Drew Bledsoe (irony alert!) for 13th on the all-time NFL touchdown pass list with 252.

He carved up the vaunted Jets defense, turning what seemed like a great game of chess into a Checkers party where one-side kept kinging themselves repeatedly. Eight different Pats caught passes, which is exactly as many incompletions as Brady had on the evening.

See, for a large portion of this year, Brady was getting MVP love because the Patriots were winning without the same personnel as in previous years. Then people started talking about his dropoff in production after Randy Moss' departure, and it sure does seem like something snapped.

Since an embarrassing loss to the Browns, Brady's gone 70/95 for 877 yards and nine touchdowns (no picks) in three games. That's fairly ridiculous, to say the least.

It's not like his season's was bad before that, either -- he's thrown just four interceptions on the year, even though his raw stats haven't been tremendous up until this stretch (the Pittsburgh game was his first 300-yard passing effort of the year).

And yeah, it's going to be extremely chic to call Brady the clear-cut MVP come Tuesday morning, but the facts are the facts -- and right now, the Patriots are the best team in the NFL.

There are other people that deserve mention in the race, obviously; it's a sick group that includes Manning (maybe if they run the table), Rivers (they've got to win out too), Aaron Rodgers (but his defense is just so good), Matt Ryan (Michael Turner perhaps?) and Maurice Jones-Drew to name a few.

But none of those guys have their team positioned as the top team in the NFL, based primarily on the fact that their play at their position has been strong enough the entire year to overcome significant weaknesses in other areas on the roster. Which is exactly what Tom Brady's done in 2010.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: December 6, 2010 5:20 pm

Pats vs. Jets: Monday night Podcast Preview

Posted by Will Brinson

You've waited all day for it, and it's finally here. No, not the freaking Monday night matchup between the Pats and the Jets. I mean the podcast previewing the Monday night matchup between the Pats and the Jets. Guh.

Andy and I break down all the X's and O's of the matchup, including (and especially) what the Jets will do with Darrelle Revis now that Randy Moss is gone from New England. Will he cover Wes Welker? Or will it be Deion Branch stuck on Revis Island? Or will he simply sit all over Aaron Hernandez? We also wonder what the Pats will do from an offensive standpoint, in order to counter the Jets first move of Revis placement.

All in all, it's basically the best 11 minutes of your day -- just hit the play button below and don't forget to Subscribe via iTunes.

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .
Posted on: December 3, 2010 11:00 pm

NFL Sound Off Week 13: player endorsements

Posted by Andy Benoit

In this week’s Social Media Sound Off, we asked out Twitter and Facebook followers this question:

Tom Brady is endorsing Ugg Boots. What other products & NFL players would make a good match for endorsement purposes?
Here were the best responses we received.

Via Twitter ( @CBSSportsNFL

  Jared Allen and Cabela's.

@Bobby_BigWheel  Philip Rivers and Midol

@strictlyCALI  Antonio Cromartie should sponsor the Maury Povich show.

@tomtehr  Brett Favre for Crocs. (And) Philip Rivers for Huggies diapers.

@RevDJChadEsq  Jay Cutler and Summer's Eve?

@jallen14  Cortland Finnegan and Summer's Eve.

@gcmac08  Are you kidding me? Any guy endorsing UGGS is seriously unmasculine-even if it is Tom Brady. First the hair and now this.

@thesteelersnat  James Harrison & Western Union

@DrewUnga  Ryan Leaf and Summer's Eve.

@uh_ohcarlyrae  @mvp86hinesward & Crest toothpaste

(Andy's note: the best idea we received overall if you're looking at it from a pure business standpoint.)

Via Facebook (  Facebook.com/CBSSports  )

James Freeman Tom Brady in need of a SuperCuts endorsement, of course that is if Giselle will let him.

Jim Boardman All Dallas Cowboys players- Hoover vacuums

Jason Jacoby Ambrose Cooper Courtland Finnegan; Everlast 4008 80-Pound Traditional Heavy Bag (Punching Bag if you didn't get it)

Stephen Florentz Peyton Hillis-mack trucks

Pat McConnell Rex Ryan – Fatheads
(Andy’s note: Pat got on a bit of a roll and left another clever response: Derek Anderson – Comedy Central)

Kevin Maloid Stevie Johnson (Bills) - Butterfinger candy
(Andy’s note: just plain mean.)

Join in on the social media platforms next week for another intelligent, thoughtful discussion (or sounding board for semi-crass one-liners) about a major story from the NFL.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed .

Category: NFL
Posted on: November 30, 2010 4:03 pm

Hot Routes 11.30.10: Henry story keeps inspiring

Posted by Will Brinson

Got a link for the Hot Routes? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL).
  • According to the Mark Washburn of the Charlotte Observer, 76 people in Charlotte have signed up to become organ donors since the touching story of Chris Henry's mother and the people who received his organs aired on The NFL Today. This doesn't even include the number of folks who registered through the DMV, which is typically the easiest way to become an organ donor. Very cool stuff.
  • Tom Brady didn't practice Tuesday. In other news, taxes are still due sometime in April and the sun will come up tomorrow.
  • Interesting nugget that slipped through the cracks in Peter King's MMQB yesterday -- the 49ers KNEW that the Broncos were going to be videotaping the walkthrough in London. Which means that someone in the Broncos organization told them, or it's common knowledge that the Broncos do this. The former seems most likely, I suppose, based on everyone else getting tipped off, but it's a pretty interesting little factoid that seemed like it deserved a little attention. Just. Saying.
Posted on: November 30, 2010 10:31 am
Edited on: November 30, 2010 10:42 am

Tom Brady is now endorsing UGGs

Posted by Will Brinson

Not many football players get more attention paid to their fashion than Tom Brady -- whether it's the zany rumors that he's visiting a hair plug specialist, or his Justin Bieber haircut or him wearing a Yankees hat, we always seem to notice.

That's why it IS news when he decides to endorse UGGs (even so, Vegas set the over/under for "must be a slow news day" comments at 12.5).

“We have decided that we needed to just get the word out there that it’s a brand for guys,” UGGs CEO Angel Martinez said on CNBC's Mad Money. "[We want to] give guys permission to wear UGG. And who better to give guys permission to wear UGG than … Tom Brady."

Now, sure, this seems like it's rife for a Kissing Suzy Kolber spoof, and, sure, I didn't know that UGGs even made stuff for dudes, but good for the fuzzy boot company and good for Brady on this one.

After all, there's a good chance that Brady is pulling something similar to his UnderAmour deal here -- he picked up ownership in the company when he switched to the smaller sports apparel firm.

That's just speculation, of course, but the most logical move for these two parties, from a business sense, would be a decent-sized endorsement deal coupled with some sort of stipend that involves Brady getting real paid if sales of the menswear takes off.

And, while the fact that Brady's endorsing fuzzy women's boots seems about as weird as linking to Jimmy Cramer in this spot, it's pretty impressive that he seems to be setting himself up for a pretty lucrative post-football business career.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: November 29, 2010 3:39 pm

NFL Week 12 Podcast Review

Posted by Will Brinson

Week 12 of the NFL season is almost over (scary thought, no) and for once, we've got a little bit of clarity in terms of who's good and who's bad. The key phrase there, of course, is "a little bit."

To sort out the muddled business, though, Andy and I hop on the podcast machine and discuss whether Peyton Manning is seriously troubled, what kind of punishment Cortland Finnegan and Andre Johnson deserve, what the Buccaneers really are, if the Packers-Falcons game was an NFC Championship Game preview, why the Falcons are so unstoppable at home, if Steve Johnson is insane, whether Josh McDaniels is a lame duck in Denver, how Kansas City can contend and whether the Dolphins are back now.

All those problems solved (plus, much, much more) below -- just hit the play button below and don't forget to Subscribe via iTunes.

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com