My post-NFL Conference Championship weekend thoughts…
Larry Fitzgerald. Larry Fitzgerald. Larry Fitzgerald. If you’ve watched this guy play this playoffs, then you know that he has been the driving force behind the Cardinals’ improbable Super Bowl run. He’s making a strong case for the Chiefs drafting Michael Crabtree, who I see as being the next Fitzgerald. The big game is in two weeks, which should give Anquan Boldin enough to to get back to full strength. I think the Boldin-Fitz combo could give us an interesting preview of what a Bowe-Crabtree duo could be like. Hey, every good NFL team has to have an identity. With our current personnel, we are much closer to being an offensive juggernaut than a defensive powerhouse. More to come on this for sure.
Bart Scott is a hitter. Karlos Dansby really covers some field. We have to land one of these guys in free agency.
Terrell Suggs played huge today even with his hurt shoulder, and recorded both of his two sacks with his hand down. He and Julius Peppers are free agents, but Peppers is saying he wants out of Carolina and onto a team that runs a 3-4 defense. Suggs is probably the cheaper option and better fit should we decided to ante up the coin to get him. I doubt Baltimore will let both him and Scott walk, though.
A thought on Mark Sanchez and Matt Stafford. Scott Pioli has never drafted a quarterback anywhere near that high. I love Sanchez, but I don’t foresee it happening. Keep an eye on Matt Leinart and the fallout from Kurt Warner leading the Cards to the Super Bowl. Warner will definitely be resigned now, and I don’t think the Cards can afford both Leinart and Warner with Dansby being an UFA. Could be an interesting trade possibility. Our 2010 first and this year’s third or fourth for Leinart?
Jared Gaither struggled today, but he played well at left tackle for the Ravens for most of the year. One of the Carl-Herm regime’s biggest mistakes was passing on a young tackle with that much talent in the supplemental draft. That’s why Ozzie Newsome is one of the best in the biz and Carl Peterson is jobless, I suppose.
Steve Spagnuolo is the Rams new coach. Damn. Jon Gruden is not the answer either, especially with a young QB. Along with Paul Pasqualoni, Rex Ryan and Ron Rivera, Arizona Cardinals offensive coordinator Todd Haley is another potential head coaching candidate. I was super impressed by Haley today, particularly the way he handled a disgruntled Boldin and engineered the seven-minute game-winning drive. He’s a Bill Parcells disciple, so I could see him being in the mix. Especially after today. He might be the next Ken Whisenhunt. (Apparently, Jason Whitlock and I are on the same wavelength on this one.)
How does Herm Edwards have a job when Chucky got canned?
As much as I love Matt Ryan, he and Joe Flacco were pretty bad in these playoffs. Maybe instead of drafting a young QB we should trade for one (Matt Cassel, Leinart)?
That’s it for tonight. I’ll leave with Ryan Parker’s tribute to my man Larry Fitzgerald (C4C, Case for Crabtree!)…