Skip to main content

Cheers to Dalton's rise; jeers to Mallett's demise

Welcome to the Around The NFL End Around, a weekly look back at the world of the National Football League. Dan Hanzus serves as your guide.

It was a good week for ...

1. Andy Dalton: The Glowing Gingerman cannot be stopped. Bow down before him. Accept your God.

2. Matt Hasselbeck: A landmark week for old guys at the gym with a sneaky drop-step post move. Chuck Pagano said Hasselbeck was "literally on his death bed" in the days before Thursday's game. Somebody call up Bruce Willis (or a younger bald actor), we got ourselves a movie!

3. Todd Gurley: From my buddy Chris Wesseling: Gurley had more runs of 20-plus yards in the second half of Sunday's win against the Cardinals than Trent Richardson had in three years in the NFL.

It was a bad week for ...

1. Colin Kaepernick: Seriously though, what happened to this guy? I'm starting to wonder if he was cursed by a mystical Irish banshee.

2. Mike Tirico: Tirico is my favorite play-by-play guy in the business not named Al Michaels. Which is why I felt for the ESPN man after he missed K.J. Wright's illegal bat out of the back of the end zone on Monday night. Tirico never misses anything. Let's hope Mike wasn't too hard on himself.

3. Joe Philbin: Some guys get fired and you think, "Yeah, there's a decent chance he gets another head-coaching job down the line." Others get canned and you think, "Teams would fold before giving that guy another shot in the big chair." Guess which category Joey Philbz gets filed under.

OK, this HAS to be the end for Ryan Mallett, right?

If Bill O'Brien sticks with Ryan Mallett in Week 6, I'll be absolutely convinced Mallett is in ownership of a grainy iPhone video of O'Brien dancing nude to Rick Ross hits.

Mallett is not a good quarterback, which made O'Brien's decision to quickly turn away from Brian Hoyer a season-sinking mistake. Now O'Brien is trapped in a grotesque game of musical chairs. Seriously, there are episodes of American Horror Story that are easier to watch than Texans games this season.

Mallett is all swagger, no game, and that's unlikely to change at age 27. Which is not to say I haven't enjoyed the Ryan Mallett Experience. In fact, it might be my favorite subplot of the 2015 season to date. A wildly over-confident and ineffective quarterback getting start after start despite clear evidence this is a bad idea. What was Einstein's definition of insanity again? Oh right, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Mallett's ultimate sin came on Thursday when he pulled himself out of the game after taking a hard shot to the ribs against the Colts. Phil Simms later acknowledged the hard truth of pro football: You don't ever come off the field when you're the quarterback because you give the coach a reason not to put you back in. And that's exactly what happened. Ryan Mallett was not pleased:

Hoyer played well in relief, with the exception of a horrendous late interception that all but sealed Houston's fate. This is Bill O'Brien's life. I feel for the man.

Is Andy Dalton ELITE?

Dalton's first-quarter dominance (yeah, I said it) has to be one of the biggest, if not the biggest, surprise of the young NFL season. Dalton is carving up defenses with a near historic 10.2 yards per attempt average. And check out the video above. As Gregg "The Boss" Rosenthal recently pointed out, even Andy Dalton's hair has more swagger in 2015. The guy is in total control. And he's loose. And he's vocal. And he's ... oh no ... dear God ... I can't help it ... I have to ... say what I feel ...



(Author soils pants, dies.)

Congrats Area Mobile Conglomerate

Drew Brees wasn't on the Saints' injury report this week, a good indication he's over the rotator cuff issue that caused him to miss his first game in nearly a decade in Week 3. That means Luke McCown is again firmly entrenched as the team's backup, which meaaaaaannns Verizon just pulled off one of the greatest ad campaigns, like, ever.

You've seen the commercial, right? You must have, it's only approximately 139,000 plays behind FanDuel and Draft Kings ads this season.

They did it. They freakin' did it! I am now wholly confident that Verizon's backup generator system will be competent in a big spot because Luke McCown proved it, damn it! Don Draper would be proud.

What the what?

The top headline on at one point on Tuesday:

Not that guy. Anybody but that guy. Lance Easley, the man who blew the Fail Mary game and then wrote a book about it and is now attempting to develop a reality show about, I don't know, being a crappy replacement ref for four weeks, wants to reach out to the official who doomed the Lions with a no-call on Monday.

Because I'm a masochist, I clicked into the story. This was a great decision because here's the first line:

"Lance Easley was sitting in a Southern California acting class Monday night when his phone started blowing up."

Of course this guy is taking an acting class.

I'm not saying every game should be played in England ...

... but every press conference should include that guy.

Dan Campbell is large

Jeez, look at how he manhandles that podium. He's almost bullying it. Anyway, now that Campbell is the Dolphins' interim head coach, I had to make some adjustments on the Greatest Body On An NFL Coach Power Rankings:

  1. Dan Campbell
  1. (empty out of deference to Dan Campbell)
  1. (empty out of deference to Dan Campbell)
  1. (empty out of deference to Dan Campbell)
  1. (empty out of deference to Dan Campbell)
  1. Ron Rivera (works out primarily with farm equipment, a la Rocky IV)
  1. Ken Whisenhunt (nice work/life balance shines through)
  1. Jason Garrett (sleeper)
  1. Jack Del Rio (strapping man)
  1. Sean Payton (got rocked up a couple years ago, haven't seen bod lately)

Tweet of the week

I wonder how Jaws pays his plucky Millennial social media guy. Because whatever it is, double it.

Quote of the Week, Part I

"Yeah, I'm upset. It's slanderous to report things I didn't say, to degrade my reputation, it's sickening to me."

-- Ryan Tannehill, who denied telling some Dolphins players to "Enjoy your practice squad paycheck, enjoy your practice squad trophy."

Am I the only one that hopes Tannehill said exactly that? That's a guy who could use a little flavor. Being an 80s teen movie bully would have been a nice turn.

"I don't play for job security. Whether football's here or not, I will be fine. I go out, I play to win. I'm not worried about job security when I step in this building."

-- Colin Kaepernick, who can make these comments with relative confidence when Blaine Freaking Gabbert is the guy taking snaps behind him.

Villain of the Week: Greg Hardy

This guy is the worst. In his first media availability since returning for a suspension for an incident that involved guns and a woman, Hardy made comments about, yep, guns (metaphorical, but still) and a woman (in this case, Gisele).

I'm not sure if Greg Hardy should be allowed to play, but I know he shouldn't be allowed to speak.

Until next time ...

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content