Highs and lows from Friday's preseason games
It's only preseason, but so glad Alex Smith had a good debut with KC — Derek Evans (@derekre3) August 10, 2013
Lite overkligt att se Alex Smith i andra färger än Red and Gold, önskar den mannen all framgång dock, oerhört sympatisk. —> — Josef Häggblad (@JosefHaggblad) August 10, 2013No idea what that last tweet meant, but I like to think he's saying something positive. Again, this is the preseason, but with every day I'm liking this Chiefs team more and more. They have a lot of budding talent and could very well make some noise. Kudos to you, Alex. 5. Sean Payton is back where he belongs The whole BountyGate issue has been hashed and rehashed so many times, it's become boring. Who cares at this point? It's just good to see one of the brightest minds in football roaming a sideline again. 6. Cowboys defense looks sharp again Is new defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin cooking up something good in Dallas? Maybe. After getting an interception returned for a touchdown in the Hall of Fame Game, Big D was at it again in Oakland on Friday: After Jason Hatcher recovered a fumble that led to a Cowboys field goal, J.J. Wilcox came up with an interception, which eventually led to a touchdown. That's two turnovers turning into points on the scoreboard. That's how you get it done. THE LOWS 1. Geno Smith limps off the field This was the rookie's big chance. With Mark Sanchez throwing a bad interception early in the first quarter, Smith could have taken the lead for the starting job with a strong showing against the Lions. While Smith went 6 of 7 for 47 yards and didn't turn the ball over, it was an overall listless performance. He never came close to putting the Jets in scoring position. What's worse, he wound up rolling his ankle and was forced out of the game early in the third quarter. I'm not saying he failed, but this could have gone much better. And his body language still leaves something to be desired. 2. Riley Cooper starts for the Eagles I use the word "start" loosely. He was on the field for Philly's first play from scrimmage. And he caught a pass from Michael Vick for 19 yards. Other than that, there isn't much to say about a person who is still in most people's doghouse (mine included).
Riley Cooper on fan reaction tonight: "I don't know. I didn't pay any attention. I know I had that one catch and people said it was good." — Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) August 10, 2013Moving on! 3. New uniform, same old Tebow Here's what I had to say about Tebow getting into the game on Friday. And this pretty much sums up his performance against the Eagles: Tim Tebow" src="http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/3034415/tebowcannon_medium.gif" alt="" width="600" height="400" /> I heard a lot of stories about Tebow visiting various passing gurus during the offseason to get his throwing motion in order. Maybe it's still a work in progress. Whatever you want to say, this isn't going to get it done.
"They are not the best throwing mechanics of quarterbacks we see in the NFL." -Brian Baldinger on Tim Tebow just now — Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) August 10, 2013Agreed. But still, all eyes are somehow still on him:
Which Patriots player had the biggest crowd outside his locker tonight? Me, included? Number 5 in your program, folks--Tim Tebow. — P. Schrager (@PSchrags) August 10, 20134. Bears-Panthers game turns into an interception festival People laugh when I say Cam Newton will hoist the Lombardi Trophy one day. Not this season, but some day. However, he can't take one step forward and one back. First, he threw a first-quarter touchdown pass to Brandon LaFell (step forward). Then he threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown (step back). By the way, Bears quarterback Jay Cutler didn't fare much better, throwing a pick of his own. The backups got into the act as Derek Anderson (Panthers) turned one over and Matt Blanchard (Bears) had a pick of his own. Just ugly football down in Carolina on Friday. 5. The No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft leaves with an injury Everything is OK, but people had to be concerned when Chiefs offensive lineman Eric Fisher headed to the locker room with a thumb injury. X-rays did come back negative and even if he had broken it, he would have probably been able to play with a cast. But still, with all the injuries flying around in 2013, nothing can be taken for granted. ROOKIE WATCH One of the more fun parts of the preseason is seeing the first-year guys get their first taste of NFL game action. So, let's see how some of the more notable names did on Friday. 1. QB Geno Smith (Jets): 6 of 7 for 47 yards. 2. WR DeAndre Hopkins (Texans): 4 catches for 52 yards and a 34-yard touchdown catch. 3. WR Cordarrelle Patterson (Vikings): 4 catches for 54 yards and a 50-yard kickoff return. 4. QB Matt Barkley (Eagles): 11 of 22 for 103 yards and a 12-yard touchdown pass 5. DE Ziggy Ansah (Lions): 2 tackles and an interception returned for a touchdown. Questions? Comments? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we might respond in our weekly mailbag!