Tag Archives: Matthew Stafford

Thanksgiving 2009: Packers de-claw the Lions

Happy Pilgrims Ate a Whole Bunch of Food Hundreds of Years Ago Day!  The Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions mixed collard greens today in the first of three Thanksgiving NFL games.  Joe Buck and Troy Aikman provided commentary for this Fox telecast.   The Packers began on offense–for one play as kickoff-returner wide receiver Jordy Nelson fumbled the ball as he was tackled and the Lions recovered it.  After three attempts to score, wide receiver Calvin Johnson made a touchdown catch in the end zone.  Detroit 7 and Green Bay 0.  In the bottom of the first quarter Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was intercepted by Packers safety Nick Collins.  The final play of the quarter was a beautiful sixty-eight yard pass from Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers to wide receiver Donald Driver.

Packers tight end Donald Lee leaped into the end zone for a TD at the start of the second quarter.  Detroit 7 and Green Bay 7.  The Packers took the lead with a field goal halfway through the quarter.  Green Bay 10 and Detroit 7.  Two or three plays into the Lions’ go on offense, Matthew Stafford threw another interception, this time to Packers cornerback Tramon Williams.  The Packers increased their lead with another field goal in the remaining minute of the second quarter.  Green Bay 13 and Detroit 7.

The third quarter opened with Matthew Stafford throwing an interception to Packers cornerback Charles Woodson.  The Lions challenged the call but didn’t win.  Luckily for them, Aaron Rodgers lost the ball a few plays later and the Lions got back the ball.  How would they capitalize?  Would they capitalize?  Nope.  Donald Driver made a TD catch for his team in the second half of the third quarter.  Green Bay 20 and Detroit 7.  The Lions had a chance to shrink their score deficit but a field goal was no good in the bottom of the third.  Wide receiver James Jones’s catch and crossing of the goal line increased the Packers’ lead.  Green Bay 27 and Detroit 7.

The Lions regained some of their opening offense momentum in the fourth quarter…except they couldn’t get the ball in the end zone.  Whoa, what just happened on the second play after the Packers took to offense?  One of the Lions knocked a Packer down.  Either the Lions got a safety or they got a TD.  The Packers coach challenged the TD call and won.  It was a safety.  Green Bay 27 and Detroit 9.  Another trip to the red zone yielded no TDs; a field goal was good.  Green Bay 27 and Detroit 12.  Charles Woodson intercepted Stafford again with four minutes left in the game and ran it into the end zone.  Green Bay 34 and Detroit 12.  Final score.

The CBS signal only emits through the TV in the living room; I prefer to watch TV in the dining room.  Thus, I shan’t be watching the Cowboys-Raiders game.  The Giants-Broncos game is on NFL Network tonight.

Observations & Miscellania:

1.  The National Anthem was sung by Melanie Fiona.  Qui?  Wow.  It’s Jennifer Lopez and Pocahontas in one!  She wore a red wine colored knee-length dress and a huge diamond bracelet on her left wrist.  Matt Stafford and Calvin Johnson both got medium shots during the performance.  Wow, Matt Stafford’s jaw is so big.

2.  United Way and E2k sports sponsored a halftime performance paying tribute to the 50th Anniversary of Motown.  The first song, sung byVita Chambers, was “Heat Wave.”   Mon dieu, her singing was not very impressive.  The second song, sung by Kem, was “Higher Ground.”  The third song was “I’ll Be There,” performed by Melanie Fiona.  Yes, dancers surrounded each act.  The fourth song was Hal Linton doing “I Heard It Through the Grapevine.”  Shontelle and Hal Linton sang the fifth song, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”   Forever the Sickest Kids did the sixth song, “Dancing In the Street.”  Who are these people?!

3.  The Fox camera operators (all men) got their five to seven seconds on broadcast in the top of the fourth quarter.

4.  In the fourth quarter, Troy Aikman remarked that Calvin Johnson is incredibly talented and is reminiscent of a young Randy Moss.

5.  $583,000 was approximately the amount that a Canadian developer paid to purchase the Pontiac Silverdome.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.

Pre-S 09: the Lions squint over the Falcons

Ah… it’s time to relax.  You know what that means.   A glass of wine, your favorite easy chair, and of course this televised pre-season 2009 NFL game playing on your home television.  So go on and indulge yourself.   That’s right.  Kick off your shoes.  Put your feet up.  Just lean back and enjoy the instant replays.  After all, pigskin soothes even the crabbiest of beasts.

The Atlanta Falcons marked their first pre-season 2009 display in the north lands of the Detroit Lions.   Broadcast on NBC, Randy Waters (of 11alive, my local NBC station) and Brian Baldinger provided commentary for the competitive sports affair.  The first quarter chugged off to a sluggish start.  It wasn’t until the Lions got their hands on the ball for the first time, and were ten yards away from the end zone, that there was any likelihood for a score.  Quarterback Daunte Culpepper was integral to the series of plays that moved his team down the field.  He passed to receivers but also ran the ball.  Detroit put the first number on the board with a field goal.

On the Falcons’ second possession in the first quarter, Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan connected with wide receiver Brian Finneran, which was followed by a forty-yard touchdown courtesy of running back Michael Turner (and the protection skills of tackle Tyson Claybo and fullback Ovie Mughelli).   Atlanta 7 and Detroit 3.

Chris Redman took over quarterbacking duties in the second quarter for the Falcons.  Kicker Jason Elam nailed a forty-six yard field goal halfway through the quarter.  Atlanta 10 and Detroit 3.  Matthew Stafford made his appearance as QB for the Lions in the second half of the second quarter.

The third quarter bounced out with Falcons linebacker Tony Gilbert intercepting Matthew Stafford’s forty-two yard pass for a TD.   The extra point did not happen.  Atlanta 16 and Detroit 3.  Stafford redeemed himself a few minutes later with a TD throw to wide receiver Derrick Williams.  Atlanta 16 and Detroit 10.   DJ Shockley took over as quarterback in the middle of the quarter.   Falcons running back Jason Snelling pushed his way through the Lions defenders to break the plane and toss up another TD.   Atlanta 23 and Detroit 10.

Falcons linebacker Jamie Winborn intercepted Stafford in the second half of the third quarter…oh, but it wouldn’t count due to penalties on both teams.  A few plays later, Drew Stanton went in as quarterback and Lions running back Aaron Brown galloped thirty-some-odd yards into the end zone with few Falcons on his trail.  Atlanta 23 and Detroit 17.

John Parker Wilson quarterbacked for the Falcons in the middle of the fourth quarter.  In the bottom of the quarter, Jason Elam made a forty-one yard field goal, giving the Falcons a lead of 26 to Detroit’s 17.  A minute later,  Aaron Brown ran the ball fortyish yards into end zone for a TD.  He did a cartwheel and a backflip and was flagged for unsportsman-like conduct.  Atlanta 26 and Detroit 24.  Lions kicker Jason Hanson made a forty-seven yard field goal to give his team a one point win over the Falcons.  Detroit 27 and Atlanta 26.

Observations & Miscellania:

1.  Matt Stafford looks pretty good in a Lions uniform.  Oh la la, that blue suits him tres bien.

2.  Oh wow.  Did the Falcons’ spandex pants get even more shimmery?  Mon dieu, I’d love to caress a Falcon kneecap.

3.  Randy Waters noted in the first quarter that Calvin Johnson, a wide receiver for the Lions, would not be in today’s game because of a slight mishap in training camp.  There weren’t any more details but I surmise it’s the kind of injury that would compel Johnson to heal and rest through the pre-season.  Wait, I typed too soon.  Brian Baldinger remarked a few minutes later that Calvin Johnson sprained his thumb in practice.

4.  Tight-end Tony Gonzalez is so handsome.  There was some interview footage (horizontal split-screen/boxed window) after a commericial break.  可是 他的眼睛 好像有畫眼線.  也許是影子.  He was wearing a cap.  He looks awesome in Falcons colors.

5.  Falcons linebacker Mike Peterson likes to “run and hit” as he told Fred Kalil in sidelines interview.

6.  Fred Kalil interviewed Matt Ryan before the third quarter.   The QB definitely has a more confident and calmer air about him.  Less eager-scrappy-puppy and more alert-comfortable-soul.

7.  Falcons owner, Arthur Blank, sat in the press box with Randy Waters and Brian Baldinger in the third quarter.  When the camera cut to the three of them (in a medium, low-angle shot), Baldinger was nodding earnestly like a disciple soaking up words of wisdom from a guru.  Among the questions that Waters asked Blank were whether or not there was a moment in last season where Blank knew the Falcons were doing things right.  Blank mentioned a game against Green Bay and how confidently the Falcons had played – Roddy White had a great day.  Waters also asked about Blank visiting Michael Vick.  And then Stafford threw a TD.  When Blank answered the question, he had summarized the meeting as one of how Vick’s life had changed since his personal and professional lowpoint.   Blank and Waters then gave a shoutout to Harry Douglas.  Blank also wished Vick well.

8.  Stafford’s “second” intercepted pass was a surreal one.  To me, a beautiful or awesome interception is the sort where a defensive player plucks the ball from mid-air.  In-the-blink-of-an-eye sort.  A surreal interception occurs when a quarterback misses his intended target so substantially that he might as well have just thrown the ball straight to whomever intercepted the pass.

9.  The game-winning Lions field goal was filmed in a long shot and very, very far behind the Lions on the field.  I couldn’t tell if Jason Hanson had succeeded for failed based on where the ball went.  I saw Lions fans behind the end zone stand up with their arms extended to the stars, and I knew the field goal was good.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.

College Football: GaTech uncorks UGA with pow

1893. Grover Cleveland was the President of the United States. Thomas Edison was forty-six years-old. F. Scott Fitzgerald wouldn’t be born for three years (he hadn’t even been conceived). DW Griffith was eighteen years-old. And, for our purposes today, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets and the UGA Bulldogs first felt the pangs of anything-you-can-do-i-can-do-better.

The stingers and the barkers doled out their best moves in Athens today. Would UGA win for the eighth time in a row? Would GaTech yank the handkerchief from the Bulldogs’ breast pocket? Televised by CBS, the first quarter started with a Bulldogs possession which led to a touchdown catch by tight end Tripp Chandler, who spent most of the season injured. UGA 7 and GaTech 0. In the bottom of the first quarter, UGA quarterback Matthew Stafford threw an interception–right into the arms of GaTech safety Morgan Burnett, who then ran thirty-five yards into the end zone for a touchdown. The extra point snap wasn’t executed well (due to the rain perhaps?). An improv two-point conversion was not successful. UGA 7 and GaTech 6.

The second quarter started with a TD for UGA thanks to wide receiver Mohammed Massaquoi. UGA 14 and GaTech 6. Running back Lucas Cox took the Yellow Jackets into the end zone on their next possession. A deliberate two-point conversion was foiled. UGA 14 and GaTech 12. It’s not my imagination. On UGA’s next go, Mohammed Massaquoi threw the ball in search of wide receiver AJ Green (the pass was incomplete). And then, Massaquoi swept himself forty-nine yards into the end zone. Bulldogs 21 and Yellow Jackets 12. The bottom of the second quarter ended with another Massaquoi TD. Going into halftime, UGA 28 and Yellow Jackets 12. Actually, it literally ended with GaTech quarterback Josh Nesbitt throwing an interception; the ball was grabbed by safety Reshad Jones.

Whatever happened in the Yellow Jackets locker room during halftime–a thundering speech by head coach Paul Johnson or just an austere stare down–worked very well. The third quarter started with GaTech running back Jonathan Dwyer running sixty yards into the end zone for a touchdown!!! He also made it into the end zone for a two-point conversion. Bulldogs 28 and Yellow Jackets 20. GaTech, capitalizing on their newfound electrifying umph, increased their points with a TD by running back Roddy Jones. Another two-point conversion was effectively attempted–the goal line broken by Nesbitt. Both teams tied with 28 points. UGA, on their next possession, had the ball for one play. Bulldogs running back Richard Samuel was ferrying the ball back, and as he was tackled, the prolate spheroid fell out from his grasp. GaTech recovered the fumbled ball; Jonathan Dwyer ran it into the end zone one play later. The extra point kick was good. The Yellow Jackets took the lead with 35 to 28 points. GaTech kicker Scott Blair sent out a field goal towards the bottom of the third quarter. Yellow Jackets 38 and Bulldogs 28. The third-quarter-ending play had UGA running back Knowshon Moreno hobbling off the field (but he was able to go back in in the fourth quarter).

The fourth quarter started with Moreno cramming the ball into the end zone. GaTech 38 and UGA 35. Jaybo Shaw had to step in for Josh Nesbitt when the game clock was about nine minutes. Two plays later, Nesbitt was back in the game. Roddy Jones increased GaTech’s lead with a forty-five yard rushing TD halfway through the fourth quarter. C’etait magnifique! Yellow Jackets 45 and Bulldogs 35. UGA was not about to let their rivalry victory reign slip from under their chins. Aided by successful connections between Stafford and Moreno, the Bulldogs got to the red zone and AJ Green put the ball into the end zone. GaTech 45 and UGA 42. Final score. FINAL SCORE. For the first time since he’s been head coach at UGA, Mark Richt and his Bulldogs lost to the Yellow Jackets.

Observations & Miscellania:

1. Craig Bolerjack and Trev Albert something or another provided commentary.

2. Both teams were on the field before the game, emulating mosh pit frenzy.

3. Brief shots of the spectators revealed a lot of red.

4. The Yellow Jackets wore white jerseys, the Bulldogs red.

5. The interception that Matthew Stafford was the best thing that could’ve happened to UGA. The Bulldogs offense was on fire after that move.

6. One of the UGA fans wore a Grinch mask and some plaid.

7. Product Placement break: Matthew Stafford holding a Coke cup on the sidelines in the top of the third quarter (after the play where one of GaTech’s defensive players had to hobble slowly off the field). I guess a Gatorade cup wouldn’t have matched his uniform.

8. By the bottom of the fourth quarter, the offensive Bulldogs’ white pants had turned greenish-gray on account of contact with the turf. The defensive Yellow Jackets’ white pants, on the other hand, were still quite white.

9. Four minutes left to play in the fourth quarter, each team had only one time-out. UGA used their last time-out with ninety seconds left. GaTech took their final time-out with forty-eight seconds on the clock.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.

Pic cred: google image search

<~>

Oh, and New York Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress accidentally shot himself last night. He’ll live.

Virginia Tech won against Virginia.

College Football: Gators give the Bulldogs a blue christmas

UGA’s Bulldogs (in red jerseys) cartwheeled south to Jacksonville, Florida to play the Gators (in white jerseys) in front of 80,000+ spectators.  Broadcast on CBS, the first quarter started with a false start flag at twelve minutes and twenty-three seconds on Gators outside linebacker Carl Johnson.   A Bulldogs thirty-seven yard field goal attempt was no good.  The quarter ended with a touchdown by Gators wide receiver Percy Harvin.

Another UGA field goal attempt, in the top of the second quarter, was good.  Gators 7 and Bulldogs 3.  Florida scored again with a TD by its own quarterback Tim Tebow.  Or not.  Upon review in the replay booth, the TD call was reversed.  But on a second try, Tebow did indeed break the plane.  Florida 14 and UGA 3.  Blair Walsh, the Bulldogs kicker, kicked another unsuccessful field goal–the ball slammed into the middle of one of the uprights (the left one from the field POV).

The third quarter progressed to the halfway point and Tim Tebow made about TD (after Gators defensive back Joe Haden intercepted Matthew Stafford’s pass and ran eighty-eight yards).  Florida 21 and UGA 3.  Gators Louis Murphy ran into the end zone not long after that one.  Near the end of the third quarter, Florida recovered a fumbled Bulldogs ball and two plays later, Tebow got another TD.  35 to 3.   The fourth quarter began with another interception and then touchdown in the Gators’ favor; Percy Harvin made the TD catch. 41 to 3.   John Brantley took over quarterbacking duties for the Gators from that point.  He threw a TD to wide receiver Deonte Thompson.  49 to 3.  Joe Cox went in as quarterback for UGA about halfway into the fourth quarter.  The Bulldogs finally got a TD in the bottom of the quarter, thanks to tight end Aaron White’s catch.   Florida 49 and UGA 10.  Final score.

Observations & Miscellania:

1. Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson were commentators.  They remarked that Joe Haden and Louis Murphy’s contributions were facilitated by pulling on the shirts of Bulldogs players.

2. Tim Tebow was skipping along his sidelines with joy near the end of the game.  During commercial break, the side judge told him to return to the bench.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.

In brighter news, the Ga Tech beat Florida St. 31 to 28.