Why don't you check out what one of our writers played around with and put together? 
Without stating my entire thoughts and views on the rest of the world, I will start with two quick points.

1. Merry Christmas, and happy holidays to you. I hope you are enjoying your break, but obviously it can’t be that good if you are here reading this during Christmas Eve.

2. Boise State may not be the best team in the land. There could be a .0001% chance that they are (whereas Auburn and Oregon are each closer to the 50% mark each), but that’s not what I am arguing. What I am out to say is that Boise State is at least worthy of a BCS bowl. They probably have the rights to one over any other school not named Oregon, Auburn and Stanford (whose only loss is to the eventual National Champion or runner up). I will not be so bold as to say that they could stomp on Ohio State, roll over Wisconsin, throw down 40 points on Arkansas, or even beat TCU (though they have 2 years in a row… but I realize that’s beside the point). What I am arguing is that Boise State is ranked in the top 10 of the BCS, and if nothing else they deserve a shot to be in a BCS Bowl by merit alone.

Without turning this into a huge new discussion, let’s keep this down to a few simple points. Earlier in the year, the President of the Ohio State University claimed that they did not in fact play schools like, “The little sisters of the poor.” However, multiple sources then came out and showed that by scheduling teams like Marshall, Youngstown State, and Eastern Michigan, they were in fact playing the same level of competition as TCU and Boise State. Furthermore, it shows that because a school is UNABLE to change their conference and likewise cannot change their conference schedule from year to year, the only deciding factor that they have to improve their appearance to the rest of the world is against non-conference opponents.

Boise State has played a few major teams recently. They beat Oregon at home (last year), beat a fairly good Virginia Tech team (that didn’t lose to another FBS Division 1 team), and was a field goal away from being undefeated for a few years in a row. Ohio State is a solid team and could probably beat Boise State as well. But to state that Boise doesn’t deserve a BCS bowl based upon the body of their work is ridiculous. Overall, they cannot control their conference but took care of business albeit against inferior opponents. They played multiple ranked teams and even when they played poorly could still win by a few touchdowns. They did everything that they were asked to do, and have been told to “wait” for years at a time. This is the worst injustice this specific year, because like them or hate them, you can’t tell me that even if Boise isn’t as good as Oregon, Stanford, Auburn, Arkansas, Wisconsin, TCU, Ohio State, Oklahoma … you cannot tell me that they aren’t as good as Connecticut.

The Big East has some solid football teams, but has had a poor year (and possibly a poor last few years). You can argue all you want that Boise State couldn’t have survived the entire year in a more difficult schedule of playing the Big East opponents, but I will also say that you can’t tell me that wouldn’t at LEAST have gone 8-4 and had a chance to win it in their first year alone!

In closing, Boise State could probably get stomped by Oklahoma, but UConn will ultimately end with the same chances and fate that Boise would have had. Remember, the argument isn’t that Boise is the best team in the land, the argument is that they should be considered a top 10 team (which they are ranked) and get the chance to play in ANY game that they earn, regardless of what the rest of their conference has accomplished (or failed to). 



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Just saw a link to a national affiliate that Greg Olson (The Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator) officially got word from the NFL head offices that a call was made which was wrong in their game this past week. Now, most fans probably argue at least one or two big calls per week aren't called, but it's not always that a call can affect a game. 

Here's what I DON'T understand. The other coaches on the staff (including Raheem Morris, Head Coach for those of you who don't know), were commenting that they already think Greg Olson (their own guy!) will be fined for his comments. Apparently the league will tell you when they were wrong, but don't want you to tell others about it! So my question and thought for the morning is how many times does an average team get word from the league that they were swindled out of a game (and perhaps out of a win with post-season securing status, such as today!) ... because it doesn't seem like they are even allowed to justify their loss to the public! 
I don't understand the individualized and special treatment of quarterbacks for a lot of reasons ... but here it is for the most reasonable ones.

First things first, I understand (and so should you) that in a quarterback driven league, EVERY owner wants the offensive scores to be higher. NO one wants to watch an ugly offense, and no owner wants to watch their 15 to 20 million investment (per year) go down to a major injury. 

Don't believe me? When Brady went down to a hit below the knee (which Palmer also suffered only a few years ago, by the way) the owners voted in the new rule that you can't pursue the quarterback when you are on the ground. They don't want the QB getting hurt.

Also, as a side note, who would you rather watch run their team's offense? Kerry Collins or Vince Young? Charlie Batch or Ben Roethlisberger? Jake Delhomme or Colt McCoy? Brett Favre or Joe Webb? ... I can keep going on (no really, I can ... Sanchez/Clemens, Henne/Pennington, Manning/Painter, Vick/Kolb, Rodgers/Flynn ... good enough yet?)

Here's where I don't understand the rules. You cannot hit a quarterback (from my understanding) in the helmet .. I have heard when he is past the line of scrimmage he is considered a "runner" and therefore you should be able to hit him in the helmet then right? Well what defines a quarterback then? If Brad Smith, Ronnie Brown, Josh Cribbs or Darren Sproles take a 'wildcat' snap, aren't they the quarterback for the play?

Does this mean they aren't allowed to get hit as well? It wouldn't be fair to suggest that a running back shouldn't be allowed to be hit the same as a quarterback, becuase that would kill a defensemen. Imagine trying to 'lay the wood' on a wildcat quarterback (becuase he took the snap, he is the quarterback for the play...) who is clearly trying to run up the middle, but LITERALLY at the last second he pulls up as if he were going to try a "Tim-Tebow-esque" jump pass (see Tebow's Florida highlights). That would have to be a penalty by the rules if the "quarterback" were hit in the helmet or was tackled by a played who was on the ground and was still going for the tackle (the Brady Rule). 

Also imagine that a quarterback is lined up at the wide receiver position on a wildcat formation, and on an "end around" (where the WR who is played in this case by the QB sweeps behind) the ball is flipped to the QB and he throws it downfield. You should be able to hit him as hard as you want ... he isn't the quarterback for that play because he didn't take the snap. 

BUT the league couldn't conform to these rules because it would rob the game and get their quarterbacks killed. So what this means to me is that the league (quite simply) protects the star quarterbacks over others. It very well could be favoritism and it happens all the time.

I have seen plays recently where Peyton Manning, Tom Brady or Joe Flacco have been grabbed (and not even wrapped up) but the plays have been whistled dead. Whereas I have also seen in just the last few weeks that Ben Roethlisberger, Mark Sanchez, and Mike Vick were grabbed and being pulled down ... but they were able to escape or at least throw the ball away before they hit the ground. Like it or not (because it might have an advantage AND a disadvantage for either case) ... the rules aren't the same for every quarterback. That needs to stop. 

Overall I may have gotten a little off subject (or touched on a few somewhat related items), but that's ok. The point is that with the NFL currently trying to enforce the currently existing safety rules for players, they also need to realize that they need to enforce them ...equally. That's not to suggest that some players haven't developed a reputation amongst officials of being dirty players, but what it does mean is don't give them the chance to see that preferential treatment (either in a positive or negative way). If a guy commits a helmet to helmet ... cool. PUNISH THEM... I DONT CARE!  but don't just call it on some players (or on some plays) but then not call it on others. If a QB is wrapped up and you want to whistle it dead... fine... but don't let some have all day until they hit the ground, but make another suffer a 9 yard sack because he was touched! So many people are so concerned with the rules, and that is a valid point. But regardless of what the rules are, you need to enforce them equally amongst all players. 
A quick way to make a "power rankings?" 

Simple ... take the point differential of every team and divide it by the number of games the team has played to figure out the average margin of victory (or defeat). 

It's not the most interesting or innovative way to rank teams, but it should give you an idea of how many games they will win. 

After week 14 by using the differential per game, the top ten teams are as follows:
1. New England
2. San Diego
3. Green Bay
4. Atlanta
5. Pittsburgh
6. New Orleans
7. Philadelphia
8. New York Giants
9. Baltimore Ravens
10. Chicago Bears

Officially, New England, Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Chicago have all clinched the post season... and 4 of the others (Ravens, Giants, Eagles, and New Orleans) should all make it as well ... the other two, San Diego and Green Bay, wouldn't be bad teams to watch either. 

Side note ... bottom five teams in this differential?
1. Carolina
2. Denver
3. Arizona
4. Seattle
5. Cincinnatti
Just a quick tidbit because I feel like I owe it to him. Brett has always been someone who I enjoyed, but never really had a love or hate relationship with. It was agonizing to see his meltdown with the Jets (and more or less get Eric Mangini fired ... who had Favre "forced" on him by the way) ... but even his drama with the Vikings didn't bother me. Until this year.

Last year you could even say he milked the whole camp thing, but this year he didn't even act like he wanted to be there. Was it the reason for the Vikings' demise? Maybe not ... but I seem to believe so. Those extra reps in camp (or any ... considering he barely showed up) would have meant Brett was just a few more completions on per game, a few more looks that he could recognize, or even some intangibles and / or pointers that he could bring to the team from a leadership point of view. 

The whole thing was blown up when Childress allowed his stars to (more or less) go crawling on their hands and knees to Brett to come back, That is organization mis-management 101. If Childress was in charge for real... he could have been hated but he also could have found a way to move on. Trade for McNabb, go with Sage before he traded him .. or anoint Tarvaris the starter. Whatever you do ... just do something. Instead he waited around and played #2 to Brett's number one. 

I disliked Brett for obvious reasons (as stated above) for the past year and couldn't deal with him dominating the headlines week to week. BUT. All that aside, I give the guy at least a few points in my book when he took the field as banged up as he was He had nothin to lose. No real incentive to be out there and yet he still sacrificed himself and his health. His team is banged up.. lost a few linemen, Adrian Peterson wasn't playing .. but because there was really no other option he manned up and literally took one for the team. It didn't count for the streak, it didn't mean much for the fame, and he had no chance of going to the post season ... but, when I counted him out, Brett Favre showed just a glimpse of why people have loved him for so long... he is just a kid at heart who doesn't care about anything else than taking the field and playing the game of football. 
Tom Brady. He has talent around him but is arguably the best player on the best team in one of the best divisions in football. 
Mike Vick. He is not a "true" quarterback but he is one of the most electrifying players in the league. Combine that with his # of touches and he is a top 5.
Matt Ryan. However you want to spin it, he wins. He's the leader of a complete team but doesn't have too much (or lack of) talent around him.
Aaron Rogers. In the games he has finished this year, his team lost only 4 games. All four were by a field goal ... and when did he lose his entire running attack? He has willed this team to victories week after week.
Ryan Fitzpatrick. Laugh if you want. With the Bills (and therefore against the Jets, Pats, and Dolphins ... Twice Each!) he has accumulated 4 wins with another 4 losses by 3 points. Fitzpatrick is on pace to pass for 3000+ yards and 25 - 30TDs. WITH THE BILLS. Imagine him in Minnesota or Arizona...

Yes Peyton Manning, Matt Schaub, Philip Rivers, Joe Flacco, Drew Brees and Ben Roethlisberger are all solid QB's. However, all have a lot of talent around them (and most have solid defenses as well). But this was only a note on the guys who have been the best regardless of what was around them. Peyton Manning is the closest to this list (probably #6) but he has also faltered through a few games when his players went down. 
Right down the list ...

Baltimore over New Orleans. Neither team should get too thrilled nor upset. Quality game and both are getting primed for the post season. However... the situation in the tight NFC South is making it difficult for the Saints but the next two weeks will show  whether they make it into the post season or not. Baltimore, meanwhile, is completely starting to look scary as long as they stay healthy. The next two weeks might make them division winner and first round bye recipient ... or just a scary play in team. This is the time when teams get into playoff form, and the Raven's offense has started to answer their woes and fix the biggest problem they have. 

Jets over Steelers. In the short term, it doesn't mean much. Over the next two weeks, it will mean playoff spots or byes as a result of tonights game. Both teams are similar as while neither team can seem to take care of business every week ... every single week both teams are scary. Heck .. it seems like every single game when the clock is below 10 minutes these teams are still within a score of making it or breaking it. Sure makes for good football.

Bengals over Browns. Can't look too much into this game. Both teams are out, both are playing for pride of their state, and both are just going to need another year to try and put the entire team back together. The Bengals have flash and talent .. but no team concept. The Browns have a strong and disciplined team concept, but no real play makers (a few, but all young). Not the worst game from either team .. but nothing special about grind it out and field goals in December.   

Bills over Dolphins. This is impressive but not surprising as some will make it out to be. The Bills are a solid team without real talent (who was their head coach last year again and what happened during the off season?) The Dolphins and the Packers are probably 2 of the top 10 teams in the league, and both will miss the playoffs due to strong division play, bad breaks and injuries. Look for strong improvements from this year to next year. 

Cowboys over Redskins. Two teams better than many give them credit for .. but their respective seasons have been over for a few weeks now. With headlining quarterbacks as Kitna and Grossman ... what did you expect? 

Titans over the Texans. This is the end of Gary Kubiak. Makes no real sense to fire him now, but I wouldn't be surprised to see  him out by tomorrow / Tuesday morning. You can't win them all .. but you also can't let Kerry Collins take you to the cleaners as Chris Johnson makes you look like a top draft pick type of team.

Colts over Jaguars. YES Peyton Manning is getting old. BUT... if you took away 3 of the top 5 wide receivers from any QB not named Rivers or Brady ... who still wins games week in and week out? He will be on the decline but the Colts are very much alive. The next two games should both be winnable (Oak and Ten), but the pressure of WIN OR GO HOME might be too much for a team that has been able to coast the last few years. Give Garrard all the credit in the world ... but he simply isn't a 400 yard passed nor does he have the talent around him to be that guy. If Jones-Drew only gets 15 carries .. it won't be a good day.

Chiefs over Rams. We got this one wrong. Can't hide it. Who would have thought that Matt Cassel would not only play just days after an emergency appendectomy surgery, but that he would also manage a game well enough to win? Maybe he can be a franchise quarterback after all?

Eagles over Giants. Both solid teams and this does little but help to figure out playoff rankings. Both are good and I bet both could see each other in the conference championship game the way that they both are playing. One last note ... can someone teach DeSean Jackson to wait until he actually goes into the end zone before he starts celebrating? Imagine if he would have had something bad happen due to a celebration before crossing the end zone plane ... ... you get it right?

Lions over Buccaneers. This makes no sense. The Lions are building but have no reason to play right now. The Buccaneers are fighting for their post season lives. Is Drew Stanton really as good as Josh Freeman? And weren't the Bucs the hottest things in the NFL just a few weeks ago? Both teams just seem too young in their own ways, but in 3 to 4 seasons, this could be a pair of NFC contenders. Don't laugh ... at least not too hard.

Panthers over Cardinals .... what is going on here? Fox is on the way out the door, and Whisenhunt needs a quarterback in this draft BAD or he is going to be feeling the hot-seat by game 3 of next year. Kurt Warner leaving combined with a trip to the superbowl just a few years ago does give him a free pass for the season I believe. One more thing ... hats off to the Panthers. They are a team playing BAD football right now, but if you didn't lose to them then you gotta tip your caps to a team winning when they have no talent and nothing left to play for but pride. 

Falcons over Seahawks. The Falcons just need to continue playing good football and keep everyone healthy. They aren't the best team in football and they aren't the clear favorites to win it all ... but they have been playing clean and efficient football. They win complete games. Seahawks fans ... the Pete Carroll experiment intrigues me. I have no idea if his Rah Rah spirit works in the pro's with paid athletes and a year round schedule ... but give him one more year. His team hasn't quit on him and he is showing some signs of life. Plus, it's still a new way of operating for him  as at USC he has 2 to 3 years before his new players had to play. (And they were paid heads and shoulders above the competition .... too soon?... I'm actually a big Pete Carroll fan in terms of him being a college coach and a community figure... it means nothing as a head NFL coach however...) 

Raiders over Broncos. Another team with an interim head coach that shows what it can do but doesn't exactly have the talent to do it. Tim Tebow will dominate the highlights until something called Christmas happens... but how ironic is it that the three most talked about quarterbacks this week will probably be Tebow, Vick, and Brady (with half a cup of Peyton Manning). Still ... Tim Tebow had one good game and will hope to continue to prove himself as well. Don't look too much into it. He played well against a good defense, but it was ONE GAME.

Chargers over 49ers. How simple was this one to call? We will definitely get some picks wrong (who doesn't) but the Chargers are getting healthy as the 49ers are a mediocre team in a sub par division, and can't even string together a week to week gameplan. 

More on the way tomorrow. Like always - I'd love to hear the thoughts!  
Forgive us if this is slightly cluttered, we are going to let old man Calvin take a look at it and see if he can navigate it. If he can get around the website with ease, then none of you guys should have any complaints! 

Technical and Content updates all throughout this weekend. Check out the Bowls starting today! (For more info, look at the NCAA tab above!) 
Because the QB's are the most important parts of the game, let me touch on a few quick numbers. Usually the blogs will be longer and more frequent, but there is still a lot to do in order to bring this website to the respectable level! As always .. coments are great!

1. If sports are so boring right now that one of the hottest topics is whether or not Mike Vick can own a dog .... I really hope Bowl Season gets here quickly and we have some great games ... (less than 24 hours now til Game #1 ... check it out in our NCAA Football section!)

2. For more proof on the QB being the essential part of a football team ... the Cleveland Browns are a mediocre team. Not a lot of talent, but a lot of hard work. They have been bitten by the injury bug especially at the QB position and here's a quick overview. Read into it as deep as you want. Through 13 games this season:

Jake Delhomme = 4.5 Games
93 of 149 for 62% completion and 872 yards. Also has 2 TD's passing 0 Rushing and 7 Int's with 1 Fumble as well. Add that to 7 Sacks. 

Seneca Wallace + Colt McCoy = Remaining 8.5 (Neither are amazing at this point in their respective careers ... but both have mobility). 
Seneca: 63 of 100 or 63% for 693 yards and 4 Passing TDs 0 Rushing TDs 2 Ints 1 Fumble and 6 Sacks
Colt:    81 of 127 or 64% for 975 yards and 3 Passing TDs 1 Rushing TDs 3 Ints 0 Fumbles and 15 Sacks (14 from the Jets, Jaguars, and Pittsburgh ... who all have good pass rushing units). 

Overview of a Game:
Delhomme's: 194 Passing yards per game, 0.44 TD's(pass) 0 Rush TD's, and 1.56 Int's with 0.44 Fumbles and 1.55 Sacks. 
He did this against Tampa Bay, Atlanta (1/2 game), Carolina, Miami and Buffalo...

Other 2: 196 Passing per game, 0.82 TD's (pass), 0.12 Rush TD's, and 0.59 Int's with 0.44 Fumbles and 2.47 Sacks.
They did this against New Orleans, New England, Pittsburgh, New York Jets, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Jacksonville, and half a game against Atlanta

Long story short Delhomme had the enitre offseason to get ready and played weaker competition, but has the same passing ability as Wallace or McCoy. Meanwhile, a mobile journeyman and a rookie late 3rd round pick have shown flashes of potential while all of their opponents are post season competitors except Cincinnati. They managed the same average yards per game, more TD's, less Int's, and while they averaged about 1 sack more per game (against tougher pass rushers), they also didn't have nearly the turnover ratio as Jake averaged almost a full turnover more PER GAME as the other two. 

Who's the Starter?