What is of greater significance, attitude or talent? I say this in reference to Dez Bryant and the temper tantrum displayed for all to see in the Cowboys' 31-30 loss to Detroit. It seems that many, if not all, rationalize that his intense passion for football out-weights his lack of self-control and disrespect for other players and coaches.
Going into this game, the battle was Cowboy and Lions with a sub-plot of Bryant and Calvin Johnson. I really can't see Johnson losing control the way Bryant did; he has too much class. What amazed me was that the aggression went on and on and on. First it was Tony Romo and his offensive coordinator, then the wide receiver coach, and then it got serious. Jason Witten and DeMarcus Ware? Perhaps the two most respected Cowboys players in the last 10 years have to intervene due to a player who basically was upset because he was not getting his way. I thought it was an ugly incident that re-established the ticking time bomb that is Terrell Owens. Opps , I mean Dez Bryant.
In the extreme opposite, there is Calvin Johnson. When you wish for the perfect wide receiver you wish for Calvin Johnson. 6'5, 245lbs, runs a 4.5 forty and has a 45" vertical. But have you noticed how the number one comments about Calvin Johnson is not football but personality and person, and how comfortable people are around him and how comfortable he is around people. That he has the one thing we can all control in good and bad times, that being attitude. Often truth is based on massive repetition over time, both positive and negative. If you constantly and consistently hear something about someone, that something about that someone is probably true. Not every now and then but all the time. Everyone says that Calvin Johnson is unique, both on the football field and off and both as a player and a person. Constantly and consistently. There is talent and attitude; Calvin Johnson has both and Dez Bryant has one .
In Green Bay, I vote for Arron Rogers for best quarterback in present time. I know the competition is severe - Payton Manning , Tom Brady , Drew Bress -but I have never seen anybody throw a football like Arron Rogers. The velocity is in the extreme, the accuracy incredible, and his calmness beyond unique. Arron Rogers comes across as if he is playing pickup football with his friends in his demeanor and vibe. Rogers was 15-for-19 on 3rd down and on four of the missed third down opportunities they went for it on fourth down and got it. So it was 17-of-19. It is always an opinion based speculative assessment when you talk about "the best," but my opinion, based on speculation, sides with Arron Rogers.
Who is the best team right now? How about the Cincinnati Bengals. That was a pretty good Jets defense that Andy Dalton ripped apart for over 300 yards passing and over 40 points. Marvin Lewis is becoming a perfect example not to change head coaches too fast. Lewis entered this year with career wins and losses of 79-80-1. Most coaches, if not all, after that many games with a one-game losing record would not be head coaches anymore. Yet, this is the best Bengals team that Marvin Lewis has ever had.
I broke a rule that I promised I would never break: never go against Payton Manning. At one point, the Washington Redskins were winning 21-7 in Denver. Then we heard the last of Roy Helu, Jr. and Alfred Morris and the running game. Have no idea why? RG3 is a different type of quarterback, not better or not as good, just different. Kind of like Alex Smith in KC, who needs players of quality around him to win. RGR needs running backs around him to win and he needs the coaches to use them all four quarters. Finally, the Kansas City Chiefs finished the 2012 season with a 2-14 record; worst in the league. The same Kansas City Chiefs are now 8-0 with eight to go. There really are only two reasons; Alex Smith as a quarterback that protects the ball and Andy Ried as a head coach . Now, of the two, Ried is a bigger reason for success than Smith. This reminds me of when Sean Payton was a head coach, was suspended and came back as a head and look at the Saints now.
But it is not so much the individual head coach as a person as much as the structure and demands that key person demands. Andy Reid sets the schedule, hires the assistants, drafts the players, asks for the free agents, cuts players and this is the key - expresses accountability. Crystal clear in what is expected and what results are demanded. With a team of 53 players and 53 different personalities, organization in the clearest manor is a priority. Head coaches are master organizers. So 8-0, and here we go after an undefeated season created only by the '74 Dolphins. Of the eight games left, five are tough ones. At Denver on November 17 with the Chiefs coming off the bye, at San Diego the next week followed by Denver again, this time in Denver. And the final two; Colts at home and San Diego in San Diego. With that schedule, if the Chiefs do it they for certain have earned it.