Sunday, October 14, 2007

Jones-Drew, L.T. Run Wild!

Perhaps that embarassing loss by UCLA to Notre Dame two weekends ago was all it took to light a fire under Maurice Jones-Drew of the Jacksonville Jaguars. The day after his (and my) alma-mater's loss he had a big day against the Kansas City Chiefs, with 112 yards of total offense on twelve touches including a 52-yard touchdown run. I said in my blog this past Wednesday that all he needed was "more touches" to be back to the 2006 version who burst onto the NFL scene with 16 touchdowns.

With only 14 yards on five carries late in the first half in today's game against the Houston Texans, it appeared this was going to be another long day for Jones-Drew, but with 2:30 to go in the first half, he rambled 27 yards on a play to help set up a 37-yard field goal by John Carney. The Jaguars took a 10-6 halftime lead.

The game was still very much in doubt as the third quarter wound down. The Jaguars had a 16-9 lead, and Jones-Drew, for the most part, had been ignored in the offense. With 1:30 to go in that frame, he only had touched the ball nine times on offense: two receptions for 34 yards, and seven rushes for 47 yards...

As the third quarter ended though, Jones-Drew FINALLY was allowed to become more involved in the Jaguar offense... a four-yard rush, followed by a 25-yard pass from David Garrard closed out the quarter. The fourth quarter opened with a Garrard pass to Jones-Drew for no gain. He then gained 10 yards and a first down with a run to the left side, setting up a first and goal. Two plays later, Jones-Drew cruised into the end zone with an easy 7-yard run to the right to give the Jaguars a 23-9 lead.

Houston nearly drove the length of the field with their next possession, but quarterback Matt Schaub was sacked, forcing a fumble. Daryl Smith of the Jaguars picked up the loose ball and rambled 77 yards for another score to make it a 30-9 game with 8:55 to play. Schaub was intercepted on his next possession, setting the stage up for Jones-Drew again. The Jaguars took over at their own 27 yard line. They handed the ball to Jones-Drew on the first play of the drive for no gain... Garrard then passed to Michael Lewis for a 16 yard gain to give the Jaguars anothe fresh set of downs... Then, just like last week, Jones-Drew broke the big one... a 57 yard scamper down the right side with 5:48 to go in the game made the Jags lead 37-9.

In a little less than 11 minutes, Jones-Drew had touched the ball seven times, accumulating 103 yards and two scores... making those of us who have stuck with him on their fantasy teams like me VERY happy!!! The commentators doing the game gave him the ultimate compliment today, comparing his moves to the great Barry Sanders. At only 5'7" tall and with his shiftyness and ability to break the big play seemingly at any time, I think those comparisons just might be valid... Even with his big day, he only touched the ball 16 times on offense today. With what he's done the past two weekends, you wonder just what kind of numbers he would put up if given say 25-30 touches a week? I can only hope! In the meantime, the Jaguars ended up cruising to their fourth straight win, with the final result being 37-17.

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One guy who doesn't have ANY problems getting touches is LaDainian Tomlinson of the San Diego Chargers. To be precise, he ended up with 27 touches today in the Chargers game against the much-improved Oakland Raiders... What did he do with those touches, you may ask? Well, one look at the box score is pretty much all you need to see:

Q1 9:24 SD TD Tomlinson rushed up the middle for 3 yard gain (Kaeding made PAT) 7-0

Q1 6:51 SD TD Tomlinson rushed to the left for 27 yard gain (Kaeding made PAT) 14-0

Q3 9:42 SD TD Tomlinson rushed to the left for 13 yard gain (Kaeding made PAT) 21-7

Q4 2:52 SD TD Tomlinson rushed to the right for 41 yard gain (Kaeding made PAT) 28-14


Yes, there's a reason why L.T. goes #1 year after year in fantasy league drafts, and the above only tells part of the story. Yes, he scored FOUR touchdowns in the Chargers 28-14 win over the Raiders today, but he ended up accumulating some REALLY gaudy numbers on the day: 24 rushes for 199 yards, 3 receptions for 16 yards. In a typical league this day would give you 44 fantasy points... yes, that's a lot!!! With the other consensus top five overall fantasy picks (Steven Jackson, Larry Johnson, Shawn Alexander, Frank Gore) disappointing their owners a lot so far, it's good to see at least one of the big five guys starting to live up to his reputation and lofty draft day status. FYI, Johnson had his second 100 yard game in three weeks today (and a score) for the Chiefs as they beat the Cincinnati Bengals 27-20. So, maybe there's some hope for him as well...

As for the rest of L.T's football game, the Chargers defense kept the Raiders in check pretty much all day. Raider QB Daunte Culpepper was sacked six times, threw two interceptions and also lost a crucial fumble in the red-zone as the first half ended. His lone highlight on the day was completing a touchdown pass to Zach Miller with 5:18 to go in the game. The highly-touted Raider running game was non-existant all day long, mustering only 53 yards on 22 carries. The only other Raider score came on a very bad misfire by Charger QB Philip Rivers with seven minutes to go in the second quarter. With the Chargers driving, Rivers tried to force a ball down the left side and instead was intercepted by Thomas Howard who returned the ball 66 yards for the Raiders first score of the game. At 3-3, the Chargers are now tied with the Kansas City Chiefs for the AFC West division lead.

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2 comments:

lil jimmy said...

Nothing about Tom Brady? The guy had an all world game yesterday. He threw for 5 TDS. The Pats won again. Yet not even a mention. What gives? Not a Pats fan I guess. Im just happy i drafted Brady in the 4th round of my fantasy draft. As well as Randy Moss in the 6th round. They are carrying me. Plus Adrian peterson in the 3rd round. A few people laughed at me. But who is laughing now? Thats right Lil jimmy is laughing.

Come read more about sports and my wacky world of comedy at www.eatabullet.com


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John C said...

Hey lil jimmy...

Yes, Mr. Brady had a GREAT game yesterday indeed... and if he keeps up this record pace, I might do a story on him at some point during the season... I'm a big Red Sox fan, but not really into the Pats. :)

On my blog I usually try to stay focused on teams/players that interest my main target audiences - the L.A. area & Washington D.C... so that's why my ex-Bruin boy Maurice Jones-Drew and L.T. got the bulk of my coverage yesterday. If Reggie Bush had scored, I probably would have given the Saints some coverage too... And I would have written about the Redskins, but they kind of blew that game against the Packers - I wasn't too happy about that one! Usually, I try to keep a positive vibe here. :)

Kudos to you on your fantasy team's success! Brady & A.P. racked up A TON of fantasy points yesterday! As for carrying my teams, my guys lately have been Derek Anderson & Braylon Edwards of the Browns - this week Anderson filled in nicely for Peyton in one league, Big Ben in another and I started him over McNabb in another... looks like he just might have earned himself some more starts for me in pretty much any league where I don't have Peyton!