Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Me loves the defensive heroes

Play of the week from a de facto rookie: Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway, a first-rounder who sat out all of last season after suffering a preseason injury, intercepted a Chad Pennington pass and ran it back 16 yards for a touchdown. The pass was supposed to be a safety valve, a simple dumpoff to the flat after Jets quarterback Pennington saw that his receivers were covered downfield. What was amazing was that Greenway saw the play breaking down long before Pennington did, knew that the checkdown was coming, and ran at least 10 yards at full speed to make the pick. By the time anyone else knew what was happening, Greenway was dancing in the end zone. Pretty remarkable field awareness for a guy who has yet to play in a full-speed NFL game.

Play of the week from a de facto AARP member: Patriots safety Rodney Harrison, 34 years old and still pissed to the high heavens, must see all the attention lavished on Titans phenom Vince Young as a sign of disrespect. (And anything involving words, deeds or thoughts is a sign of grave disrespect to Harrison.) Or perhaps he was just looking for payback against the Titans, after his 2006 season ended with an injury suffered from a cut block delivered by a Tennessee player (the biggest impact Bobby Wade will ever have on the NFL). However the psychic debt was incurred, Young's body had to write the check. On a 3rd-and-21, Young took a short drop and scanned the field for receivers. Harrison came screaming around the right side on a safety blitz and laid his shoulder square into Young's chest, rendering the QB horizontal a full two feet off the ground. Young never saw any of it ... and may still not remember it in the haze of an awful 5-for-17, four-sack day. I've long since made it clear that I don't like Harrison much, but damn, that boy can hit.

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