Football

Just when I thought I learned all I could about Matt Nagy this past season, I watched the 49ers playoff win again the Packers and was given yet another reason why I think this guy is a legit fraud. Case in point: In a post-game news conference, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan was asked about his play calling and therein, the lack of pass attempts. Shanahan’s response was as unselfish as it was honest:

“‘Cause it was working,” Shanahan said of calling run play after run play. “If it’s working you stay with it. Our guys were running so hard. Our line coming out the ball, our backs. All eleven of our guys how they’ve been all year. The guys fought hard as heck. We’re going to put it all in their hands.”

When I heard this, I immediately thought to myself: “Self, this is a guy who is confident enough in himself that he isn’t trying to prove himself to everyone. This something we are never going to hear from Matt Nagy.”

The reason why is because Matt Nagy needs to be cute, needs to be the guy who is changing the game, needs the attention and admiration.

Shanahan doesn’t. He was born into the coaching game and realizes it isn’t about the guy calling the calls, it’s about the guys on the field. If running the ball gives you the best chance at winning, then you run the shit outta that ball. Shanahan saw his dad do this, relying on Terrell Davis all the way to back to back World Championships. Sure, he had John Elway under center, but at that point, John Elway, while very good, was a shell of his former self. Think more game-manager than game-changer.

But you didn’t come here to read about Elway or the 90’s Bronco’s. You want to hear yet another reason why Nagy has failed the Chicago Bears this season. The Shanahan quote and comparison is simply the cherry on top of the Matt Nagy May Not Be Cut Out For This Shit Sundae.

Nagy is guy who constantly is trying to prove himself – something he has done often in his football playing career. He has always been a try hard guy; constantly being told No, but always asking and trying again. This mentality has served him very well in getting to this point, but now, in his current role, it can be viewed as counterproductive. Nagy is trying to prove himself as this game changing offensive mastermind – the RPO CFO if you will – and is being blinded by his own aspirations.

So, would a Nagy offense that focused more on the run game made a difference between a 10 wins and 8 wins this past season? No. But that’s not the point. The point is adjustments needs to be made on almost a play by play basis. Throw away your scripted first 10 plays – run the plays that will give you the best chance to win, regardless of if they are on a play sheet or if it is run or pass.

As fans, we often take a micro look to on field performance. A run play didn’t work? Oh, that player must suck. A QB throws an interception? He blows, put in the backup. However, if you take a more macro look at Bears offensive struggles in 2019, a majority of the blame needs to be placed at the feet of the Head Football Coach, Matt Nagy. The offensive talent on this team was never put in a position to succeed – that’s on him.

The 2020 Bears will be better, but only if their coach and leader takes a look inside himself and realizes…it’s not about him.

Final Grade – D

 

Everything Else

The Avs are one of the more colorless outfits in the league, behind their top line at least (do we actually miss Patrick Roy?), so let’s take the opportunity to bitch about a Denver icon. There is no idol we can’t throw stones at repeatedly.

There was a time when John Elway was one of the cooler athletes around. John Elway is what Rex Grossman would have been if he had feet and was tall. Elway was blessed with a bazooka as a right arm, told Jim Irsay to go fuck himself, and ended up as a Bronco for a city and organization that desperately needed any marker whatsoever. Then Elway started chucking the ball anywhere and everywhere at high speeds when he wasn’t charging out of the pocket simply to get a nice breeze going through is admittedly amazingly flowing locks. It was utter chaos, but it worked because just about no one else was doing it and in 80s football it was super easy to confuse players who were already massively concussed and coked out,  as well as defensive coordinators who were no less than 78-years-old and ate their own snot.

Elway got to three Super Bowls with rodeo clowns as receivers and a defense bereft of anyone with legs, and nearly sank the entire city of Cleveland into Lake Erie himself, which pretty much everyone agrees would have been a great arrangement for everyone involved. Of course, the Broncos got smashed up to an unrecognizable goop by the Giants, Niners, and Redskins. And then we had to deal with the the whole debate about whether someone like Elway could win a Super Bowl, essentially playing Tecmo Bowl on an NFL field.

And then he did, but he did it by just turning around and handing it off and never throwing the ball more than seven feet (thankfully, he did save us from a second Favre Super Bowl). He became what he was supposed to stand against. He became what we abhorred, and meanwhile all the grumbling old football men shook their heads in approval about how Elway “had finally learned.” He went from youthful exuberance and fun and surprise and illogical success to a buttoned-down corporate stooge. Elway is a baby boomer’s wet dream.

Of course, he was buying every goddamn car dealership from Nebraska to Salt Lake City to carry out the metaphor into real life, and has more money than The Pentaverate. Which he leveraged that into the Broncos presidency, where he’s essentially made baffling football decision after another (this is the team that drafted Tebow and played him, remember), but no one cares because they won a Super Bowl after signing one of the three best QBs of all time and somehow lucking into Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware, and most importantly having Cam Newton turn into urine. Since then they haven’t played a playoff game and just traded for Joe Flacco. Dude’s a moron, but he’ll be in his position forever because he’s ungodly rich and no Denver resident would speak ill of him for fear of being put in the stocks.

Meanwhile, he’s been backing whatever corpse they prop up in front of him that’s Republican and spouting more bullshit beyond that. Again, it doesn’t matter. Elway could shoot a teenage girl in front of Union Station in Denver and piss on her corpse and he’d still get applause.

Fuck John Elway.

 

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